Here are some simple ideas for making your own invitations:
- Draw a simple shape such as a cactus, cowboy hat or boot. Fold paper in half along left edge of design and cut out both layers.
- Write the invitation information on plain index cards and wrap each in a red bandanna (cut in half if desired). Tie closed with jute or brown string (to resemble a lasso).
- Photocopy images of cattle, Western movie characters, or Western scenery such as mountains and prairies. Have your child help you color in the images, then paste onto the front of blank cards.
- Write "Wanted!" on the front of blank ivory-colored cards or brown construction paper (folded to fit envelopes), then inside write, "Reason: To come to Paul's birthday party!" Fill in the date, address, and so on, then finish with something like "Reward: Cake and fun!"
- Go to a local farm and get a few bales of hay for children to sit on.
- Borrow some riding tack -- saddle, bridle, stirrups, horseshoes, cowboy hats.
- Make "Wanted" posters (see activity page).
- Tie red bandannas to the knots on your balloons, use bandannas as napkins or as bibs.
- Cover serving areas with gingham checked cloths.
- Make some burlap sacks of gold tied with twine and set out with big cactus plants (or cucumber cacti, made by securing cucumbers in clay pots with sand and inserting lots of toothpicks (for thorns).
- Indian headdresses, fake-fur "bear skin" rugs, coils of rope, and tin sheriff's badges are also fun.
Continued on page 2: Food Ideas