How to Host a TMNT Playdate

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My kid is kinda obsessed with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles right now. So when my friend Ilana of Mommy Shorts passed along an invite to meet the Turtles at the Toys R Us in Times Square it was pretty hard to pass up. This was not the type of meeting my son took lightly. He dressed up in a collared shirt and hip sweatshirt to meet these guys. It was a ridiculously exciting day. I took Gavin to an exclusive meet and greet with the celebrity voice talent and executive producers behind Nickelodeon’s hit animated series Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Gav and I got to conduct an interview with this group and I'm not gonna lie...I really didn't know what to ask them. I was dating back a good 20 or so years since I had seen the show myself. Yikes. SO...I asked you. Our readers! What would you ask the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles if you had the chance to meet them?And honestly guys? You gave us the best ideas! Here's how the interview went...followed by how I was inspired to do conduct a TMNT Playdate for Gavin and his buddies... LMP: Why do the turtles love pizza so much? TMNT: Who doesn't love pizza? LMP: So what is their favorite pizza place in New York City? TMNT: Johns...? Johns!! "Jonatello pizza" kidding.Also, Lombardis.However when in North Hollywood go to Little Tonies...not quite pizza pie but pizza cracker....good date night spot.   Um...I want to go! LMP: Gavin has recently gotten into Karate and may or may not think he's some type of super hero. TMNT: Was it the turtles that inspired you, Gavin to take up Karate? Gavin: Um, no. Ninjago. BEEP. WRONG Answer. LMP: Why are all of the turtles named after renaissance characters? TMNT: Larry, Mo and Curly were taken. Ninja turtles are a form of art and expression. The turtles brought attention to many who weren't otherwise exposed to art like Donatello otherwise. LMP: Michaelangelo has a California accent...why is that? Do you spend a lot of time there? TMNT: Uh....Yah. Duh. LMP: How were the colors for their bandanas chosen? TMNT: They were all supposed to be red. When the sketches came back they were different colors. At first it was the weapons that made them different. Every turtle has a very different and distinct personality. Kids choose their favorites and stay loyal to their hero. Following the interview Gavin got to meet the turtles in person. His favorite truely was Raphael. He quite literally nuzzled up to him! Since TMNT's are all the rage in my house right especially following this incredible experience, I thought it would be only fitting to come up with a fun way to have a play date. I asked our insanely amazing (and who knew SO crafty?!) babysitter, Erin to see if she could put together a DIY TMNT craft for the kids to play with. Well...she went a bit above and beyond and the kids had a blast! TMNT Crafting:Nan-chucks made out of Toilet paper (or paper towels cut in half!!) rolls, string and anything to decorate (markers, stickers, poms, etc!) Turtle Shells made out of small square paper plates with boxes drawn on for the kids to color inside of. Poke a hole on either side and string it through like a backpack. Turtle puppets made out of cardboard! Erin traced a ninja turtle, cut it out and stuck it onto a pick. The kids added googly eyes, poms, stickers and colored them in! Turtle masks made out of corrugated sleeves - from the coffee shop!  AH! No seriously, Erin - Genius! The kids colored these and then Erin poked a hole on either end and threaded twine through for the kids to tie on. To eat...I ALWAYS have a snack set out for kids on a playdate. After school they are "STARRRRRRVING". Everything is more fun in a festive cup...Veggie chips. Yum. Crudités in the turtles' colors is a no brainer. My children adore veggies especially when there is a bowl of ranch dip next to it. Make your own pizza pita pie! The kids got to make their own pie on mini pita bread topped with sauce, green peppers, cheese and pepporini. Bake for 10 min at 350 and boom. The TMNT's favorite food. The kids cooked and ate in their masks. And they devoured this meal. Kids love eating their own creations! Everyone had a blast. They walked in and shouted AWESOME! And left with the excitement of telling Mom... Cowabunga!