Wednesday, February 15, 2012

{Carson's 10th Birthday Party: Minute to Win It}

Oh man, this was a fun party!  As the kids were laughing and having fun I determined that this party theme was absolutely perfect for 10 year olds.  If you haven't seen the game show on NBC, 'Minute to Win It' is a show where contestants have to complete challenges using household items in one minute or less. 

My cute birthday boy...10 years old!!

In order to clear out enough room to hold this party indoors, we moved the sofas to the living room and set-up chairs with their names on it.  When we played this on New Years Eve, the hardest part was just keeping the kids in their own chairs while the current contestant was playing.  So the chairs seemed to help.  I made those pendant banners and love how they turned out (my first sewing project with my new sewing machine!)

I found the actual 'Minute to Win It' countdown timer on You Tube, so we used that as the official clock over and over.  It was perfect because the kids could see and hear it ...all with the official 'Minute to Win It' music.  I also made score cards for the kids to keep track of which games they completed.  I knew from the very beginning that I wanted each kid to be able to play every game.  It would be no fun having to pick and choose contestants.  So everyone got to participate in every game.  The score cards were just for fun. They got to mark it off if they gave it a 'good try'.  There were no winners and no prizes.  The kids were pretty competitive on their own. 

I picked out 10 games and we got through 8 of them.  The 'Minute to Win It' website has at least 100 games to choose from with instructions and supply lists.  It wasn't hard to gather what I needed and was very inexpensive too!  I scaled the challenges back a bit to make them a bit easier since these were 10 year olds, not adults like the game show. 

The kids were a hoot to watch.  Some of the games they all played at once, and others were played 2 at a time. 

My favorite was this tissue game where they had to keep one hand behind their back and pull out all the tissues from a tissue box, one at a time, with the other hand.  Tissue was flying was hilarious.  They loved it.

We took a break in the middle to fuel up on some snacks.  Nothing was too terribly hard.  Premade brownie bites, rice krispy treats, blue popcorn, carrots/celery, and chips.  Along with a blue drink that was supposed to look layered (clear on top, blue on bottom) kind of worked. 

And then there was the cake.  In my mind this was really easy, but ended up taking forever!  I copied an idea from pinterest and even bought precolored fondant, but it just seemed to take an eternity to cut out each little shape and determine the scale of it and everything.  I won't be tackling something like that again, but Carson loved it for this party!

And I layered the cake inside with shades of blue.  That part was easy and actually got rave reviews from the crowd.

The kids were fantastic.  All of them were so well behaved.  It warmed my heart that every single person he invited came to the party.  I know he still feels like the new kid in the neighborhood, so it was wonderful to see him have such great friends and support. They were super generous with gifts and he felt so treated! What a great  group!

Favors were these water bottles stuffed with goodies and treats along with a watch tied on the side (get it? Minute to Win it?).   I found a friend nearby who cut the vinyl for me, they turned out great!

It was such a fun party to plan, and it was so wonderful to see him enjoy it!  Being the oldest is hard sometimes, he is always being asked to help out more than the other kids around the house...simply because he is more capable than our 2 year old.  So the spot light doesn't shine on him as much as it should, but it definitely did on his birthday! 

I was exhausted by the end which meant leftover birthday cake and party food for birthday dinner.  On the weekend we made up for it by going to the Ram for dinner with just the big kids (Car and Addy).  Man, you mean it is actually that easy going to a restaurant with kids when they aren't under 4??

We love you Carson! 
*Photo by Kali Leenstra*

I can't believe you are 10 years old.  Double digits.  A big deal.   You made us parents 10 years ago, and we have never been happier!  We are so blessed that your sister and brothers have such an awesome example to look up to. 

What I love about you right now:

1.  You love Miles.  You are still first to say hi to him in the morning and when you get home from school.  You love snuggling him in your bed.  You have always loved babies, and Miles just lights you up.
2.  You help out with Miles.  You seriously are a big helper now.  You can even change diapers and feed the little man oatmeal.  If we are doing jobs, you always want the one to help out with Miles. 
3.  You are an awesome student.  Sometimes we battle with homework, but you are becoming very responsible.  You know when things are due and what needs to be done each day.  You are a great reader and I've been amazed at the number of books you have tackled so far this school year.
4.  You love hanging out with Dad.  I get side-lined here, but I couldn't care one bit because it is a joy to watch you and your dad enjoy sports and activities together.   Dad usually works his way into your room last at night to "tuck" you in, and I usually find you guys asleep or talking (way too late!)
5.  You will still give me hugs and tell me you love me.  Almost every day.
6.  You earned your Bear in cub scouts and it is on to Webelos!  I love how you enjoy cub scouts. 
7.  You love your cousins and grandpas and grandmas.  You adore them.  Even the little ones.  They are your bestest friends!
8.  You are old enough that I can leave you home alone for a little bit to run to the store.  I don't leave the little kids, but it is nice to see the light at the end of the tunnel with a real deal babysitter!
9.  You are just a good kid.  We never get complaints at school or church about behavior or attitude.  You are just generally a happy, low-stress kid.  Because of this I'll forgive the usually messy bedroom and constant unflushed toilet. Ha!

Grandma chipped in to make your birthday present extra, extra special this year!! We can't keep you off of your new ipod touch.  My favorite app is the free texting app (when there is wi-fi), so I get adorable "I love you" texts from him now.  He might be harassing some of the family too with a few too many texts, but I love that all of his 'contacts' are exclusively family.   (And you better believe I have that thing loaded with parental controls: No Internet, no you-tube, no ability to install or uninstall apps. I was hesitant at first, but feel good about it now).  And another bonus, I catch him reading his scriptures and watching messages from the 'Mormon Channel'  and reading other goodies in the Gospel library from his ipod.  That. is awesome. 
Thank you to those who remembered him with cards and presents on his birthday. So nice of everyone!  I seriously can't believe you are 10!  Happy Birthday Car!!


The Mendes Family 1:34 PM  

Looks like a super fun party! Great job on the banners, they look wonderful!

Tyler 3:11 PM  

uAmazing party Rochelle! I am not sure how you come up with all of this stuff! Very Cool!

Can't believe he is 10 already! They are growing so quickly!

Kris and Cath 8:06 PM  

HOLY COW. You should be a party planner! Where do you get all of your ideas! I cannot believe he is 10! Love and miss you and the fam!

SuburbiaMom 9:42 PM  

Party looked awesome, as usual! Great job, Rochelle!

Jen I 8:40 AM  

Seriously, you blow me away. Do you keep all your graphics and stuff from your parties? Someday I want to get them all from you and copy some of your parties! I always put in so much work for ours - and they are never NEAR as cute as yours - and they STRESS ME OUT! But then I always think I should pass all the hard work on to someone else to enjoy....

Holli 2:54 PM  

Super cool party, mom!

mommy of 3 5:11 PM  

Hello. I am huge into party planning myself, but this year I told my son he could only have a simple party. I am finding that a simple party is not satisfying me :) Now I am in crunch mode to make it an impressive party. Would you be willing to share your amazing printables? Where did you find the watches?

mommy of 3 5:11 PM  

whoops... email address

Anonymous 8:43 AM  

Do you have any of the graphics or anything left from when you did this party? I am planning my 10 year old daughter's party for the end of this month. Thanks and you did a wonderful job.

My email is

Anonymous 8:44 AM  

Do you have any of the graphics or anything left from when you did this party? I am planning my 10 year old daughter's party for the end of this month. Thanks and you did a wonderful job.

My email is

Moody7 9:35 AM  

Im interested in the graphics as well. Do you make them or order them online? Great party by the way.

Aakriti 1:02 AM  

where did you get the print outs from??

Anonymous 2:31 PM  

I am planning my daughters 10th and it will be a minute to win it party just like carsons. can you share you printables/patterns etc..

cristina furtado 8:28 AM  

Hi I'm planning my sons 9th party and I was wondering was there a sure you downloaded the graphics from a website if not can you provide me the graphics you used? Thank you in advance my email is

Anonymous 9:26 AM  

Would love to know where you got the signs etc for the party?? I am doing a Minute to Win It party for my daughter as well. Please email any ideas to:
Thanks so much! great work on your party!!!

Suba Journey with Thyroid Cancer 9:43 AM  

Hi, I'm planning my son's 10th birthday,. I am doing the Minute to Win thyem, Could you please share were you got the graphics. please email at


Erin 8:39 PM  

I am interested in the graphics as well, if you are willing to share. I went thru the comments and couldn't tell if you were or not, so i thought I would try. My email is


Marissa 11:28 AM  

This party is exactly what I want to do for my son who is turning 8! It looks like people have been leaving e-mail addresses to possibly get the graphics from you- i/d love it if you don't mind sending them along. Thank you!

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