Monday, June 3, 2013



Monday, April 1, 2013

The Mission Part II

There were gummy bunny teeth inside the outlet safe with the clue shown below:

This clue led them to another laser field that had snaps (small friction sensitive explosives) on the pavement between the lasers. This was funny because the kids thought the field looked really easy and then they would hit a snap and bang, they would all start laughing. Some of the kids had to run back inside for their shoes that they had left at the door. After they all got through the mine field, they had to find the right sprinkler that held the next clue.

After they found it, we paused for dinner. Perfect timing.

The clue in the sprinkler used one of the codes from their training. The clue sent the kids off to find the correct Dr. Pepper can from among a group of cans on the table.  
Several shaken cans and fountains of erupting sodas later, we had the clue. 
We played the "pass the bomb" version of hot potato. We spaced the recruits approximately 15 to 25 feet apart around the yard and set the timer for anywhere from 20 seconds to 4 minutes. When the timer went off, the one holding it was sent to the informant for a secret hint as to the vault combination. 
Dr. Monkey and  Black Monogram are shown breaking into the vault below.  The informant almost always got the first guess wrong.  Oops, instead of a disguise the agent released a flour cloud, but when the second punch was done, the agent found disguise glasses.  These were from target and often broke from vigorous vault punching.

Above to the right are some unicorns wearing their noses upside down.

The second bomb in the clue was the pinata.  This was tough to break and we had to bring out the baseball bat to finish the deed. Inside this pinata were pieces to a puzzle that had the last clue.

At the piano, there were green bowler hats and the following message:
Hooray, the agents defeated the mischievous leprechaun and won their slightly altered disguises.  They ran into the sun room to find the dessert table ready with yummy treats, their evidence to destroy.  The desserts are highlighted on a previous post. 

We had a wonderful time preparing and enjoying this party. Dr. Monkey was completely surprised by the mission. We had disappearing ink and a password station that I forgot to point out before the mission began and we didn't get around to making badges with their code names. Maybe we will send those with the thank you cards. 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Party Snacks

I set up the snack area in the room with the finger printing station. I used the footprint snack cups from the tutorial I pinned to the spy party board on Pinterest from :popcorn-party-cups posted by Koilie K. Thank you Kolie K.  Everyone liked these treat cups.  They were filled with popcorn, freshly popped that morning, Snapea Crisps ( a huge hit), and peanut butter filled pretzel nuggets.   On the other side of the room was an edible arrangement in a white rectangular tin of honey dew melon and green grapes, and glass cups filled with raw green veggies (asparagus, snap peas, snow peas and celery). Some had dip in the bottom; some did not. Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures of this area after I placed out the snacks because the guests started arriving just then. Here are the paper documents for making the snack cups:

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Mission:

To the surprise of the new recruits, the disguises had been stolen by another secret agent. He left a message for his team at the scene of the crime:

Our team soon got to work figuring out the clue and checking all the towels in the kitchen. Then they went to the bathroom and asked if they could go inside behind the caution tape. (Earlier in the day, we said those areas were off limits.)  Inside the bathroom they found several more clues:

First there were tiny footprints on the toilet seat:
Behind the toilet, on a shelf, there was another note from Agent Luck E. And on the towel rack across the room, there was a strange expurgated note with chads cut out. (It is shown here smaller than the actual size to fit on the same line, but the actual one had to match the other precisely because it had to fit perfectly over the other note to reveal the right letters.)

The next clue was: Use to see Wii or a DVD.  That was the T.V. room, and again the kids asked if they could go behind the caution tape. Taped to the wall at the entrance of this room was another clue.  

On the T.V. table is a hollowed out copy of gone with the wind that held an outlet tester. On the little chair is a set of colored pencils in rainbow order that held two safe keys. One of the outlets in the room is actually an outlet safe. The black balloons held little pieces of paper that spelled out OUTLET if placed in rainbow order.The new recruits found the keys and outlet tester first. When the recruits started popping the balloons it sounded like fireworks. Very funny. Best activity of the day. Dr. Monkey's Dad came into the act after the rainbow order was discovered to show the agents how to test outlets to see if they were "hot" or not. 
Above is a picture of the room before the agents went in.
This is the hollowed out book:

The book held the outlet tester device,  The recruits thought the key in the rainbow box was to use the pencils to pop the balloons. That worked well, but when they found the wall safe they realized they still needed the real key from the pencil box to open the safe. When the agents opened the outlet safe, they found gummy bunny teeth which they started to eat right away.  There was also another note from Agent Luck E.

To be continued...

Spy Party: The Desserts

During the party, the snacks were wholesome, but before we sent our little spies home, we loaded them up with sugar. We had a bomb cake, bomb brownie pops, all sorts of candies, chocolate dipped cherry bombs, jello parfait, Watergate salad, pots of gold, chocolate mustache pops, swirl lollipops, gummy worms, gummy bears, apple rings, now and laters, jolly ranchers, green bunny peeps, sour punch straws, Oreos, gumballs, sixlets. Because it was a spy party on St. Patrick's day, they were all in shades of green and black.

I didn't get any shots before the table had been picked through a bit. The decorations, a passport, compass and magnifying glass, had been moved from their original locations and the uppermost banner had been knocked down and I didn't notice right away because we were all looking at the cake. 
I cut out the little triangles and rectangles from the paper place mats and cut circles and squares around printed letters for the banners.  This took a long time and with everyone moving around in the room the little flags kept shifting. Next time I will tape them in position. 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Spy Party: The Event

The big event was yesterday, March 17th, St. Patrick's Day.  Ten spy recruits attended and several of their parents stayed too.  Recruits arrived at 2:30 sharp and gave my son the correct response to his greeting: "Happy St. Patrick's Day!"  The way to know that the response is a code, is to know the Irish. An Irishman would never say, "Tis a good day."  To a real Irishman, it would be grand, or great, or fantastic!

After correctly revealing the password, the new recruits received code names. They spun a dial to get their secret agent code names. (The dial was a twister spinner with two circles of names. The first name was on the inner circle and the second name was on the outer circle.  A bit backwards, but I had done the first names first and so there it was.) Some of the names were: Dr. Monkey, Cool Molder, Black Monogram, Stellar Ninja, Stealth Hawk, Masked Wolf, Stealth Dawn, and Major Mist. Some parents even got names.

After getting code names, spy trainees sat down and to make finger print cards. When all of the agents arrived, Dr. Monkey's Dad showed them how to lift prints off of a glass with UV powder, tape, black paper and a UV pen light.

In the background, the spy party music was playing. My husband made a playlist with songs from two Music to Spy By albums, Kim Possible, Powerpuff Girls and Shrek. You could hear this playing while the recruits focused on their next task at the counter intelligence station.  They received dial ciphers and used papers from their folders. They proceeded to decode messages in their folders using the dial and the vigenere ciphers from the International Spy Museum web site. The codes said, "Cruz is eight" and "He is glad you came."  A sheet of funny messages was also included courtesy of the talented and generous Luna's Daughter.

At last, we allowed thechildren to go through the laser field. They had been begging since they arrived.  This was set up in the hallway using red crepe paper streamers.

After that, they used lemon juice, baking soda and white crayons to write secret messages. We started this inside in the play room but because it was such a nice day, we moved the table outside.  While the messages dried, they ran around the yard and gave Cruz's outgrown play equipment a fond farewell.  Those castles must have felt like Andy's toy, Wheezey.

After that, the recruits were told it was time to go to the spy disguise station. Note: A box labeled "Disguises" was prominently placed on the piano in clear view of the entrance and the first two party stations. They ran back to the living room to find the box on the floor with a note.  Someone had stolen the disguises. Uh, was over.  The mission was on!

To be continued...

Monday, March 4, 2013

Invitations went out today

This party is going to happen in two weeks and the whole family is excited. All of the ideas and most of the supplies for this party came from Pinterest, SMILE, the International Spy Museum and Coolest Kids Parties. The Pinterest link leads to my Pinterest Board that has links to all the amazing blogs that got me started. The invitations went out in case file folders inside clasped envelopes with top secret stamps across them. Take a peek below:

I printed several ciphers on one sheet. The font is wingdings3. The symbols for I and $ are tricky.
I can't wait to begin Phase II. Wish me luck.