For those of you who wince each time you visit buzzville and find another monkey party related post, I promise that the monkey content will subside in one week! T-minus 5 days and counting until the big party.
For the rest of you who either have genuine interest in the monkey shindig, or are feigning interest for some unknown reason, I have more fun for you today. Stephanie was the genius who suggested we have a bean bag toss for the little tikes at the party, and we were happy to follow her suggestion. So, this weekend I made banana bean bags for the bean bag toss, and Jerry was assigned with making the monkey. Here is Jerry's beautiful monkey holding a hoop, painted on a large piece of cardboard using tempera paints:
and here are the bananas I made, using yellow ripstop nylon fabric and brown rayon thread for the satin-stitch detailing:
The ripstop nylon is pretty sheer, so I had to fill them with something white. I found Thai-style sticky rice that has grains that are almost round (rather than a long grain rice), and this worked out perfectly. I recommend a very silky thread (like machine embroidery thread) for the satin stitch detailing. All in all, I'm thrilled with how these came out, especially given that I totally made up the 3D pattern and just forced it to work! We've decided that rather than a toss competition (since toddlers can't really be told where to stand and be expected to stay there!), we'll do a timed competition. They will have 60 seconds to get as many bananas through the hoop as they can; parents can encourage and root, but can't help out. This should be pretty entertaining to watch!
As an unrelated side note, I thought I would let you know that saveoncrafts has these wonderful little birds on sale for $11.99. I don't have any yet, but I've heard they're quite amazing and realistic - the songs are actual high quality birdsong recordings from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and apparently the movements are quite realistic as well.