O'Sullivan family travels and beyond

Back to normality … whatever that is


September. Swapping the beach, buckets and bbqs for back-to-school and raking leaves. The weather however, continues to be wonderful – as hot as summer and so it hasn’t been too much of a shock to the system yet, although the nights are drawing in.

September is a busy time for birthdays in our house. Seamus celebrated his 4th birthday (a little early so it didn’t clash with starting nursery) I gained another year, too. The theme for Shay’s party was Ghostbusters! Fantastic costumes, especially from our neighbour who is in her 70s and made an absolutely fabulous Marshmallow Man!

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So yes, this post is a bit of a departure from a “traveling with young children travel blog” (sorry Nicky),  but as I have been asked for some of the details as to making a DIY Ghostbusters Party and can’t figure out Pintrest site, I’ll post what we did here ….

The decorations and costumes were all homemade. This was lots of fun and (I hope) saved a bit of money. We drew characters, made a ghost containment unit out of construction card and blu-tacked it to a picture frame. Lots of Slimers and ghostbuster logos were stuck everywhere. Green balloons and hazard tape added to the effect.

Orla made a stunning Statue of Liberty – her costume was a green bedsheet with a 99p garden light to hold. Aoife and Seamus were Ghostbusters, (I bought boiler suits and sewed on Ghostbuster patches saying Spengler and Venkman.)  Ian and I were Louis and Janine. Ian’s hat was made with a colendar, wires and chin strap, and I channelled my inner 80s and topped my costume off with a tacky ra-ra skirt. Guests could come as any character or anything spooky.  As a theme, it was different, funny and seemed to go down well.  Who doesn’t like the Ghostbuster theme music for pass the parcel?!

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Food – the best part of any party! This was really easy to do in comparison to other parties we have had at home.

  • lots of hot dogs (vegetarian ones, of course for our house) in finger buns, with ketchup and NY mustard
  • pizza (always a favourite)
  • meringue and marshmallow ghosts
  • green jelly (our tribute to Slimer), green grapes,
  • ghostbuster lollipops bought online
  • cheese and pineapple on USA cocktail stick flags
  • cheese and french bread for the grown ups
  • cupcakes decorated with ghosts
  • we decorated Shay’s chocolate cake with lego Ghostbusters, a statue of liberty paper crown and rice paper Slimers

Games . We tried to have games suitable for all ages which were funny, not too overwhelming and involved as many or as few people who wanted to take part.  Firstly, when guests arrived we all decorated a green paper party bag (colouring, ghostbuster stickers etc) and whenever you won a prize, these would be put int he bag to take home. Party bags also included an Americn flag, birthday cake and we made small packs of marshmallows with a thank you sticker on.

  • Musical statues – when the music stops pose as the Statue of Liberty or Ghostbuster firing his ray gun.
  • Pass the parcel – traditional, easy and fun
  • Pin the smile on the skeleton
  • Knock down ghosts (place a tennis ball in tights and wear on you head. work as a relay team to knock over  line of skittles / bottles) I imagine this would make a great game at an adult alcohol fuelled party!
  • Silly string spray fight
  • Chilled Chocolate Challenge (roll a dice, when you get a number 6 you run to the table and put on a large pair of green rubber gloves – just wish I had included goggles too.  Using  knife and fork, you cut a square of refridgerated chocolate. Keep going – and eating one square at a time – til the next person has rolled a six) Gets quite frantic!
  • Toilet paper mummy wrap
  • Spaghetti and marshmallow skyscraper challenge
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All in all, the party went well and Seamus is already asking when he can have another one! Every year I say, ‘never again, next time we will go out’ as the clear up is always immense. However (bar tidying up the silly string in the garden) this was a straight forward party to organise and one I would recommend for any age, or even an alternative Halloween party.

All the decorations are currently on sale on ebay so it is ‘never again’ on the Ghostbusters front for us, as I hope someone else gets a bargain and another use out of the stuff we made, saving them a bit of work. Perhaps I should set up a ‘recycled party shop’ to save parents the hassle of party prep!  Look out for me on Dragons Den!I require $1,000,000 for 5% stake in the buisness.


Another chance to dress up was at our visit to an event at the Marvellous Micro Museum which had a James Bond theme one weekend. Of course, we rose to the challenge and went as James Bond, James Bond Jnr 003.5, Bond Girl/Russian Spy Ivana Kissyacheek (although we instantly regretted not naming her Ivana Kickyabutt) and ‘M’ aka Mummy.  Despite having secret identities, we made ID badges! Again this would be a great theme for a party – a few dickie bows, a Russian hat or two and hey presto, it’s almost Casino Royale. Granted we had small water pistols rather than anything more dangerous, and boy did we look cool taking the bus to Ramsgate!

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Next big event for dress up is Halloween … decisions, decisions!


Author: threekidsintow

We are Caroline and Ian. We recently undertook an adventure, packing up everything and travelling with our three children. Our blog started as a way of capturing our memories of the preparation and interesting aspects of our journey. After a twist of fate, we're back in the UK much sooner than expected so who knows what's next for us now we're back home with our three kids in tow!

2 thoughts on “Back to normality … whatever that is

  1. Hi Caroline,

    So glad you are still writing your blog really enjoy reading it. Was a lovely party well done you and the effort you put in dressing up and planning the games were really impressive, and of course the food was delicious. Definitely have a good business idea there why not????


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