About nine months ago, Mini Gwinn, at the ripe old age of three and a three months, began playing video games on PlayStation 3 with us regularly. We have a pretty ridiculous set up that’s conducive to family play time. Two PlayStation 2s, two PlayStation 3s, one long, low couch, and a basement where he can yell without waking his baby brother two floors above us. As he grew, so did his skill and interest in what he played. He’s a better car driver than me, better racer, and his enthusiasm is infectious. And his interest was largely wrapped up in Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare for a long, long time.
I knew what had to be done. We had to throw him a PVZ party, especially since it would be the first birthday he’d really remember.
I started planning months ago, playing around with ideas, digging up other PVZ parties and mulling over what had been done. Etsy has hundreds of shops that sell Plants vs. Zombies invitations, paper crafting, and digital files, but for the most part, I wanted to have my hands in what was done for my almost four year old. I used the above image and made his invitations in GIMP (Linux/ open source version of Photoshop). The wording was such:
Garden Warfare is coming to (Mini Gwinn’s) Fourth Birthday!
Meet us on October 31st to Defend the Garden from Zombies!
Wear your Halloween costume to protect your brains
Let (Mini Gwinn’s) mom or Crazy Dave know you’ll be there for reinforcements
(phone, address, etc)
And since it’s a Halloween PVZ party, we had to give the kids what Halloween is all about: the candy. We’re doing a pretty big candy buffet, and in future posts, I’ll include the food and candy list, tags for the buffet, and decorations for the buffet table. For now, though, I want you to check out these 20 x 30 paintings on foam board I worked up.
I made a mini projector for my phone using a small magnifying glass and a shoe box, then traced the outline of the pictures onto foam board. I didn’t exactly do it free hand, but I’m also not exactly an artist, so I can’t take all the credit. But, I did only by the basic primary colors in tempera paint and mixed them all to match, so I feel like that’s some artistic accomplishment? Ha, anyway, I went with the original Plants vs. Zombies game instead of the console Garden Warfare, because frankly, the original game is much easier to draw and paint than the console game graphics. Either way, MG was pretty excited. We’ll use these around the house for decoration.
One more foam board use: Bonk Choy’s Bonk a Cup game. I love the poke a cup game from carnivals, it’s easy, kids like it, and it took me ten minutes to assemble the cups and glue them to the board. Bonus, it gives them something else to do while waiting to eat more candy or jump in the bounce house.
More to come later! Plus, I’m thinking of making this party planning gig a public thing- if you read this, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it!