For Georgia's birthday this year we had a super fun science rocks birthday party. Our kids are both super science nerds thanks mostly to their dad who has been doing experiments(or experiences as they used to call them before they went and grew up on us) since before they could walk. Couple that with the fact that Georgia LOVES home made birthday parties and we knew we had to put together something for her this year. I think it is super cool that Georgia is always super grateful to all of her friend's moms who put together cool parties in their own homes. I have done both--gone to a party place or hosted at home. I kind of prefer going somewhere(and taking the mess with us), but...there isn't much we won't do for our kids. So, an at home Science Rocks party is what we went with. I made a beaker birthday cake and used green cotton candy as the bubbly smoke coming out of the beaker(we have a cotton candy machine). I instagrammed a shot of it so if you are interested, you should head on over to my instagram account to check it out. When the kids arrived we had them put on their 'safety googles' which were Groucho Marx glasses from Target.
We did a few 'experiments'. Starting with home made bath bombs. These actually worked pretty good and it gave the kids a chance to get messy and make something to take home. I lead that experiment so there are no photographs of us making them, but here they are drying.
They are really so easy to make...and kind of fun. We went to a soap making supply store for most of the ingredients. This is the recipe:
Two parts baking soda, one part citric acid, one part corn starch, one part epsom salts, a little bit of water, a little bit of essential oils, and maybe some food colouring.
That's it. How easy is that? First you mix the dry ingredients, and then you add the teeniest bit(like start with a teaspoon) of the wet stuff and you mix it until it has the consistency of wet sand. Then, you pack it into a mould(which we also bought at the soap supply store) and they say to let it sit in the mould, but we found it pretty easy to pop them out relatively quickly. The one thing is...once this stuff dries in the bowl, it is no good so you have to get all of it in the moulds before that happens. Pretty easy when you have a bunch of kids doing it :)
Then, we did the exploding baggie experiment. We had each kid wrap a tablespoon of baking soda in a piece of paper towel to make a bit of a bomb. Then, we had them put a bit of white vinegar in a sandwich baggie. We had them drop the bomb and zip the baggie shut quickly...then, we watched them gradually expand and blow up. This was a big hit(like anything that explodes). This is best done outside.
We came back inside and did the ever Pinterest popular 'Elephant's Toothpaste'. We could not find the 6% hydrogen peroxide that it calls for so just used plain old 3% which is what you can buy at any drug store. It didn't have as big a foam response as the images you can find on Pinterest, but the kids still really liked it. We hot glued water bottles to tin trays, had funnels for everyone.
It was handy having a husband who is scientifically inclined to explain all of the reactions and answer the kids questions, but you can find most of these answers on the internet beforehand if you are thinking about doing something like this yourself.
After all of this fun, Bob pulled out what would be the piece de resistance for the kids--dry ice. They got to see it do all sorts of things--including make instant ice cream(just a note that if you do this, you must make sure that all of the dry ice is dissolved before allowing the kids to eat it...we smashed it into very tiny pieces before making the cream by putting it in a paper bag and rolling it out with a rolling pin). It creates a sort of carbonated ice cream which some of the kids liked, but most thought was weird. ha.
When all was said and done, Georgia declared the party a huge success. We each poured ourselves a large glass of wine the moment the kids went home. ha. True story. Then, we talked about the day that Georgia was born and how we cannot believe that she is already 9 years old. Time flies people. I simply cannot believe that my children have grown so quickly.
Georgia would like to tell you that science does indeed rock. One day she hopes to be a marine biologist who studies the wildlife of the oceans she adores. Or, maybe, an oceanographer who can help solve some of the major issues facing the health of our oceans. I can't wait to see what she'll become. One thing is for certain, her spunk and tenacity will get her just as far as her intelligence and quick wit. Love this kid.