A beaver dam party {my son is 8}

He’s 8.
That makes me sad and happy all in one moment.
His favorite place is the “Beaver Dam” next to our house.
All he wanted for his birthday was a cake that looked like a beaver and for his friends to come hike around with him. I like birthdays and celebrating them. However, I’ve learned my boys really don’t care about all the little details…what they care about is how they feel after the celebrating is over. They don’t need the latest party craze. They don’t need costly parties and elaborate decorations. And though, I truly enjoy all those details and decorating….it is nice to know those things aren’t what matter the most.

His party was super simple. A cake that looked like a beaver. A hike to the beaver dam. One structured activity. And a whole lot of 8 year old boys running crazy and free outside.

I’ll be honest, I am super proud of the cake. Pride comes before the fall, so I am sure my next cake will be a mess. I did a google search and found one by The Cake Cow. Her’s is amazing and it looked simple enough that I could attempt it. I am not a baker. I am not a chef. My cakes are usually a disaster. However, I kind of think for the first time…I nailed it. When my birthday boy saw it complete, his response was “That is AMAZING. I can even see it’s blood. Awesome Mom.” My next son came in and said, “WOW…it even has blood!”. All that work and their favorite part was the red velvet cake peeking through the icing. I love those boys.

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When I was planning the party, I told my son we needed one activity. He said I should give all the boys some pretzels and peanut butter to build their own beaver dens. He told me they could take them home as their party gifts after the party. He’s a genius that one. So in a nutshell, he planned every detail of his party. I just followed his instructions. Easy Peasy Pumpkin Squeezy.
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These are what I call the “Calm Before the Storm” pictures. So peaceful and quiet. Then the van load of little boys descended on my solitude.
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 I found him a jedi beaver shirt on etsy last week from HappyFamily. How perfect for the birthday boy?!
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The party began with battles…lots and lots of battles. Boys are so easy.
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Then we walked the couple of feet over to the woods.
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Some people call these “wellies”, if I called them that in Oklahoma I’d get a bunch of odd looks. They’re my mud boots, rain boots, work boots and my beaver dam boots…
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In case you’ve ever wondered it is nearly impossible to relocate beavers. Right now this area has dried up, so they are downstream. However, once spring rains come the beavers will return. They destroy all the trees and create ponds that mosquitos infest. Our neighbors have tried all kinds of friendly and not so friendly ways of relocating them. Yet, the beavers always return….much to my son’s delight.
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You can’t hike with 8 year old boys and not jump over streams carrying weapons. What if a rouge beaver has returned and tries to attack? Foam swords, shields, fake guns and plastic light sabers are essential. Can you believe not one boy landed in that stream? Nice.
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This is what most of the trees look like in the area. And here is the largest den…it is hard to tell in this photo how amazing it is. Chris gave the boys an educational lesson on beavers and their habitats.
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And we returned home.
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They set to work on creating their beaver dens.
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General Grievous showed up.
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I got chocolate chips because I thought peanut butter, pretzels and chocolate sounded quite yummy together. Just fyi, if you give a bunch a boys little brown pieces of chocolate for a beaver den….well their minds go somewhere else.
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Guess which little brother was a bit bummed it wasn’t his birthday?
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I got icing all over the box under the cake. It was a mess. So, I used a paper punch to cut circles out and shoved them all under the edges of the beaver. I also glued them randomly to the box where I had dropped blobs of icing…and that is how I hid the mess I made with icing.
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I let the boys tell me which part of the beaver they wanted to eat. Boys are so funny.
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It was probably the most relaxing birthday party we’ve had around here.

The boys really just ran wild outside and I tried to divert any injuries.

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