My five-year-old flies around the house at an alarming rate. This is the child who jumped off the back of the couch, glanced off a window, and chipped his tooth on the entryway tile. But nothing keeps him down for long.
He wants to be a pilot when he grows up, so I wasn’t surprised when he requested an airplane party for his birthday.
We started with a crash-landing snack (rice krispy airplanes in chocolate pudding cups) because I think he likes crashing almost as much as flying:
We decorated the room with yellow streamers and origami paper airplanes.
Of course for one of our activities we made and decorated paper airplanes. [Note: the five-year-olds needed a little help with this, while the seven-year-olds had this skill mastered.]
We tested our airplanes for accuracy and distance.
I couldn’t think of a cute way to shape a cake into an airplane and all of the ones I found online looked like too much work. I opted for a sheet cake with an airplane design.
But my most ambitious birthday project the paper-mache airplane piñata. You’ll need to start this project at least three days before the party.
Here’s how we did it…
- newspaper (torn into strips)
- 1.5 cups water
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- a balloon
- cardboard cut-out wings, tail, and propeller
- tissue paper or a party streamer
1. In a small bowl, mix the water and flour until there are no lumps. Blow up the balloon, and tie it off.
2. Dip the newspaper strips into the flour paste and then run the newspaper between two fingers to remove the excess glue. Press the wet newspaper onto the balloon. I recommend placing the strips in a variety of directions to improve the strength of the final piñata.
3. Let the balloon dry for one to three days (this will depend on how many layers of paper you apply. The more layers you apply the longer the drying time). I only did one layer, so mine was dry after 24 hours. Even so, one of my children stabbed the piñata with a steak knife after eight hours and the balloon popped. I ended up with a flat bottomed airplane. Not the effect that I was going for but we made it work.
4. Since I already had a hole in my piñata, I filled it with the prizes. (Tip: it’s a good idea to fill your balloon before you decorate it anyway.) I wrapped the gaping hole with painters tape before decorating.
5. We glued a yellow streamer around and around the balloon to create a feathered look.
6. Then we painted the wings and propeller to match the streamers.
After the paint dried, we hot glued the extra accessories to the piñata. Ta da!