Monday, June 15, 2015

E @ 3 - Zoo Birthday Party

Sunday was E's big Zoo birthday party!  He has been so excited to have a batman birthday at the zoo and so have I as it seems like the perfect place to hang out with friends.  The zoo birthday adventure began with each kid getting a small stuffed animal zoo buddy to be their friend today and thereafter.  Each family was also given a set of prompts for a photo scavenger hunt that involved the new zoo buddies.
 Uncle Able managed to get nearly all the items photographed for the scavenger hunt before we made it into the actual zoo.
 One item on the scavenger hunt was taking a photo with the birthday boy :)
 For the very first time in all my nearly 8.5 years of motherhood I bought a cake from the store.  My cake baking and decorating supplies are all in storage so I caved.  E, and everyone else, seemed to love it.  We sang happy birthday, ate the cake, mini doughnuts, mini muffins, and juice near the entry to the Oklahoma Trails exhibit as the bat barn was #1 on E's must see list for his batman birthday party.
 E got lots of awesome presents and will have a MUCH more fun week as he is quite tired of the toys we didn't pack away and ready for a lot more fun!  He had plenty of help opening his presents too.
 The Korenaks, as always, exemplify the party spirit and all came wearing batman shirts, some of which were specially purchased for this occasion.  So awesome!
 We ended up with a pretty large group of around 27 people.  We stayed together at times, but also wandered away and back together as everyone made their own way through the zoo.
 For some reason, M and the bears seems a particularly lovely picture today.
 This is one of those classic moments when we try to get all of the kids in one picture and they keep wandering in and out and adults wander in and out trying to corral them.  I probably have 10 versions.
 After the Oklahoma Trails portion of the zoo, we visited the lions briefly and then headed to the elephants.  The view from someone's shoulders is always best.  (Brent might have ended up with muffin in his hair though).  We happened to arrive right at the keeper time and got to see every one of the elephants, but especially the very cute baby Achara!

 B took the scavenger hunt to heart and is getting his picture with Slush (the stuffed dog) and an elephant for the bonus round!
 Thanks especially to Tracie for always making sure I am actually in some of the photos from family events!
 E and Genevieve were part of the stroller crew, mostly made up of his 2-3 year old friends.
 Finn is another of his stroller buddies.  His brother Eli couldn't make it, but I think Finn had a good time with his mama all to himself.
 We elected to take the elephant express back to the top of the zoo and take a little rest while we waited for it to arrive.

 Riding the tram back was lots of fun, especially as our group took up almost the entire thing!
 E loves his lion so and snuggled it carefully on the tram ride.
 Finn and Kela on the tram!
 Molly and Genevieve
 Tracie also got an awesome picture of M and her grandparents!
 And with her goddaughter
 The OKC Zoo doesn't actually have huskies so we decided a mexican grey wolf was a close enough relative.
 B took this group picture and he, Brent, Molly, and Tom are among the missing guests, but it is very close to the whole group!
Our family watching the elephants, photo credit to Tracie again.  We had a wonderful time and came back to the house to cool off with the Wainrights and Tracie in the afternoon.  B said he had an awesome day and all the kids seemed to love the new animals and spending the day together roaming the zoo.

Also a pretty good lesson for me that simple parties can be the best, but we knew that already, right? I used paperless post to send the invites and loved that it prompted guests to share photos from the day there. It went perfectly with the photo scavenger hunt idea, but also made it easy to get access to everyone else's photos and to share ours with the group. This has existed in photo sites for awhile, but the interface with the invitations and guest list here really helped it work well.  Great tool that I'll definitely use again for parties. 


Audra said...

Wonderful party, we all had a blast & the boys love their new friends. Scavenger hunt was a huge hit. Loved how into it B was when he told you no one would do it.

Tracie said...

It was a fantastic party! The scavenger hunt was so fun!! Simple sometimes is better 😀


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