DIY Science-Themed Party

I had such a great time reminiscing about Raine's last Japanese-themed birthday party, I dug up photos from her 7th birthday, when we had a Science-themed party here at home. This one was really a family affair, with my mom, sister, sister-in-law, The Hubby, uncle in the US, a good friend, and the sister's boyfriend all coming together.

We love Science, and we've been doing home experiments since the kids were little, so it was fairly easy to come up with activities. The Hubby and I experimented with experiments (ha!) to narrow down the ones which would be easy and safe to conduct with lots of kids. Plus they had to be on the side of wow. We finally decided on invisible ink with phenolphthalein (oh, add our former classmate who is now a Science teacher at our old high school to the list of people who made this happen), massive bubbles, lava lamps, 'smoke' in bubbles, soda volcano, and make-your-own ice cream.

Of course, invitations, giveaways, and decor were all DIY. I found some vintage flasks and bottles at my dad's house (my grandfather used to run a tannery), and we filled them with colored water and dry ice for that smoking lab flask effect. I made little clipboards and printed out Science experiment sheets so the kids could record their observations (and they did!). My uncle sent kids' safety glasses, and we got really cheap white shirts and cut them down the front to transform them into lab gowns. I found a supplier who makes adorable cardboard suitcases, so I just printed out name tags like 'Professor Raine' and stuck them on the suitcases to make it look like an attache case. My uncle also sent colored plastic test tubes, which we filled with Jelly Belly flops (misshapen jelly beans) which we called failed genetic experiments, and added that to the attache case. Kids also got a pack of Nerds candy each. And being the nerd that I am, I stuck little notecards into the attache case, each explaining the scientific reasons why the experiments reacted the way that they did.

Food was mostly home-cooked. We had DNA pasta (fusilli), Atomic Fried Chicken, Radioactive Lemonade, Neu-TURONs (banana fritters), PUTOns (local rice cake), and Electrons, and of course a home-baked birthday cake with a marshmallow molecule topper.

We weren't able to take pictures of everything, like the ice cream making and the soda volcano exploding, but my sister did get to capture several great moments. And as always, the kids had a blast, and that's what really matters.


Graduated cups 😀

Jotting down notes and observations.

This one took too long--the magical invisible ink. Phelolphthalein dissolved in alcohol and water, after application on paper, reacts with the air as it dries, turning pink.

The invitation. Simple printout. And I just added a little cut-out flask on foam tape for more texture

Dry ice, or solidified carbon dioxide, dissolves in water, and turns back to gas. As it passes through the tube and funnel, it blows bubbles, trapping the carbon dioxide inside.

The marshmallow molecule toppers on the home-baked cake.

Raine enjoying Radioactive Lemonade, and Sky enjoying the ice cream she made (Didn't get to take pictures of that, but we basically put milk and flavoring in a ziplock bag, which we put in an even bigger ziplock bag, which was filled with ice cubes and salt. Salt lowers the temperature of the ice, making it easier to freeze the milk).

Part of the decor.

The Lava Lamp experiment, which works thanks to different densities of the liquids.

The loot bags

Food all home-cooked. I really love the smoking flasks and jars in the background, thanks to more dry ice.

The sign that announced to guests that they had arrived at Professor Raine's party.

The Mentos and Soda experiment. Unfortunately, we were too excited by the spectacular spewing of soda out of the bottle we forgot to take pictures.

Bubbles. The shirts hanging behind Raine were the 'lab coats'.

We used Zome Tools to make bubble wands that produced huge bubbles.



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