And he has a Star Wars party and he finishes kindergarten (can you believe it?!). I felt like it was just yesterday when I wrote these  two posts about him turning five and graduating from preschool. That sounds incredibly cliche, and I hate cliche, but it’s true. I barely had time to think about him actually growing up this year. Usually I look forward to his birthday all winter. I hate winter and his birthday always falls in the first really summery weekend. Plus, I love to plan parties.

But this year, I guess because we really didn’t have much of a winter so I wasn’t trudging through the cold, counting down the days till spring, I think time just flew by. The next thing I knew, it was March and and I hadn’t thought about Gabe’s birthday really at all. (I know what you’re thinking. “Elizabeth, it was March, you had TWO months to plan, what are you talking about?”) But I usually start planning some kind of spring party for him as soon as I put the Christmas tree away.

Anyway, so we talked about it and he said he wanted a Star Wars party. I thought we should have it outside, because once you realize you don’t have to have your kids’ birthday parties at your house and clean up afterward, it changes your life forever. And Weller Park is great because it’s close to home and the shelter has attached bathrooms which pretty much sums up my list of must-haves.

I got a bunch of great Star Wars party ideas from Pinterest, which I love because it is a visual compulsive list-maker’s dream. (Or, ahem, my dream.) I felt like it took me a long time to get everything together, or maybe it was that time-crunch feeling I had going on the whole time. But once we did, I have to say, we threw one hell of a Star Wars party.

Jay made lightsabers out of pool noodles, and we had a couple of games with those. Then we played pin-the-saber on Luke. I made grape skewer lightsabers, and we had hot dogs (or lightsaber dogs). Truth be told, I called this the phallus party. You get why.

Gabe had a great time, and it seemed like the other kids had fun too, even if it was pushing 90 by noon. I hope he starts to remember his birthdays. I hope he remembers bits and pieces of this one. I really had fun putting it together, I wish I could do it for a living. But until then, here is a picture run-down:

If you throw a Star Wars party, make these. They were great for beating the shit out of each other. I mean, role playing.

Light saber toss through a hula hoop. We also had a game in which the kids were supposed to keep balloons up with their sabers but they just kept popping once they hit the grass. So it turned into a game of blow up balloons and pop them.

Pin-the-saber on Luke. That blindfold was pretty wet and sweaty by the last kid. Gross.

Eight pounds of grapes + skewers + corks covered in foil = kids eat their fruit and then take the corks out of the foil to shoot through their sabers. A weapon scenario I hadn’t planned on.

Gabe’s Vader cake that his grandma made. We went with brown because black would have dyed their teeth for 24 hours. It was awesome. And delicious. And I just ate the rest of it before writing this post.

And finally, the kids’ table. You can’t tell but there were black tablecloths with a Star Wars streamer going down the middle and silver stars garland on top. Plus balloons in the middle. If you’re going to do it, do it right, right?

Happy birthday, buddy.