This year Canaan did a Social Studies project all about the Lakota Indians. One thing I love about Canaan is how much he loves to learn. He can get excited about any random fact and everything from science, to history, to reading is fascinating to him. At 8, he retains it all way better than I do. I'm constantly having to pull out my phone to answer questions about how the moon and tide work, or how the cilia on our lungs die when we inhale cigarette smoke. His teachers this year have said he's a joy in group discussions because he is so interactive and engaged.

Anyway, the Lakota became quite the topic and he researched far beyond what was required for the project. His teacher told him he wrote way more than any other kid. So with the Lakota obsession on his mind he asked for a Cowboys & Indians themed birthday. One of our favorite birthday traditions has become the kids picking out their own theme and then perusing Pinterest together to choose (doable) ideas. I told Canaan we were going to keep it fairly simple, but realized that as they get older they can actually do the work of the crafts, etc. Canaan and Eden painted the cactus' and they did the marshnmallow bow & arrow treats.

My favorite part about his birthday was the first hour. It was so sweet to watch the first few boys come in and all smash Canaan into a group hug. They just love him. Immediately the first arrivals went to the backyard and started their own soccer game: Cowboys vs. Indians. It was a great game while we waited for kids to straggle in and wasn't even planned. I love that this is such a cultural piece that soccer is as fun and desired at a birthday party as it is on the playground every day at school. The competition was fierce and Eden, as goalie, took a direct ball to the face kicked by an older boy but held her own through it.

There were sack races around gas tanks. Bobbing for apples had some surprising twists as several kids were more excited about getting to eat the apple than winning. And then kids started dunking their whole face in the water in search of an apple which cracked us up. They all wanted multiple turns and I tried to keep thoughts of cold and germs being distributed from my mind. Shoot out involved nerf guns and was decidedly the crowd favorite. Of course there was a piñata that Canaan took from being Buzz LightYear to a Cowboy & Indian with his own artwork. Cake, little smokies and other cowboy food and then phewf! The parents came to pick up their kiddos and we were left with a house full of wrapping paper and crumbs. What more could you want from a party??




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