Picnic under the stars baby shower

My sister wanted to decorate her son’s room in owl’s and also loved the moon and stars type theme. So for her shower, I did a picnic under the stars theme with a touch of owls. I think it turned out just right.

Entry way decor. We were in the middle of our home addition and so we tried to dress up some of those areas. This entry table had an picture for all the guests to write a message on. It had an owl and the new baby’s name. I then framed it and gave it to my sister along with the baby’s initials for wall decor. We played a couple games, pictured below.


Food station. Wrapped fabric with self adhesive stars around the silverware for a
“star” touch.


Close up pictures of the center table decor. The first initial of the baby’s name (which also became a gift to her) with flowers and silver glitter stars and burlap runner.


The cake! I ordered a cake from Whole Foods bakery, because their cakes are amazing!! Then I made the cake topper with cut burlap, paper stars, twine and stamps. Love how it turned out.aug-sept-2013-317

Food table. Picnic decor. All different sizes and kinds of baskets with picnic like food: muffins, cheeses, fruits, crackers, etc with chalkboard signs.


I’d love to do this theme again!



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Danielle’s SURPRISE 40th Birthday Party

One of my closest friends was turning 40 and I knew we had to celebrate. She went to Hawaii earlier in the year with her childhood best friends to celebrate, since they all turn 40 this same year. But she still needed to have the rest of her friends shower her with birthday wishes for this milestone year.

Surprise parties are a lot of work. Let me just start with that. We had to sneak, plan, stalk, etc for weeks. A few of the easy things were that we know she loves pink. So that was a starting point. I wanted to have the party be classy and elegant, as I felt a 40th birthday should be. I was in Target one day and came across rose gold bulb string lights and rose gold candles in the Dollar Spot. I knew they were perfect and they kind of became the focus of the party.

Part of party planning for me is going around my house and seeing what I have that I can use to decorate. I found a few mason jars and burlap table runners. As well as a wooden cake topper that I had from a previous party. So I went to Michaels Craft store and got some Krylon metallic rose gold spray paint. I painted the mason jars and the cake topper. Then it was time to figure out the little touches. The day of the party I went to the local Farmers Market and got 3 large bunches of flowers to use in all the vases I had.

We ordered food from a local stores deli, so that made things super easy the day off. The cake …. always needs to be a center piece. So we ordered from the same lady that did my son’s Star Wars cake (in a previous blog post). The cake was chocolate two tier pink and had diamonds on a bow. Just the birthday girls’ style. For drinks: we decided to have cider, beer and water. We had sparkling pink lemonade and rock candy champagne drinks. Those two drinks added a great decor touch. Beautiful.

In the end, she was completely surprised! We did it! Here’s the party pics. Hope they give you some inspiration for a future party and thanks for reading. Enjoy.


The party girl and I. I forgot to mention that we bought her a tiara to have her wear during the party. It was perfect. 


Overview of the party space. 


Pictures of friends on string lights. 


Serving station. Great place to display some of her baby pictures. 😉


Drink table.


Rock Candy Champagne drinks. These were a huge hit. I bought pink rock candy sticks and put them in glasses, with champagne poured over the top. The sugar melts, making the drink sweet. Some people also added a splash of sparkling pink lemonade. Yum.


The food/cake table. 


Close up picture of some of the decor. The string lights and candles I spoke about above as well as the painted mason jars with the flowers from the farmers market and the cake topper and burlap. I forgot to mention that I found the letter “D” (friends first initial of her name) at Michaels Craft store and painted it with the same paint as the mason jars, etc. 


A close up for color .. and that tiara! 


Cake by Cakes by Jessica. Cake topper by Charlie Chalk Designs.


Balloons! Balloons make the surprise. Picture perfect.




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Monkey themed birthday

Monkey’s! Who doesn’t love monkeys? A few months before my little one turned one, he got a monkey hat, that both him and I were in love with. Then he got a stuffed monkey from someone and somehow between those two things, it grew into his birthday theme.


Is this not just the cutest?

I had seen an invitation online where they attached a candle to the invite and I thought that was perfect and exactly what I wanted to do. I gave some details and ideas to an Etsy shop (https://www.etsy.com/shop/PamperYourParty) and these envelopes and cards were created. PERFECT.


This is the envelope for the invitation.


Invitation. I then attached a yellow candle on each invite using super glue on the back of the candle and tying some brown yarn around each. 


Finished invitations.

We were going to have the party outside and I knew I wanted him to be in his high chair for when he had cake. I had seen some ideas online of making the high chair a photo prop too. So I went online (craigslist) and found an old wooden high chair that someone was selling for $10. I picked it up and decided to sand & paint it the color of the invitation. I couldn’t have asked for it to turn out better. summer-2012-065

Now on to the decor. I decided to try to stick with the color of the invitation for the whole party. I bought bubbles from Dollar Tree and then printed the same design that was on my envelopes out to wrap around the bubbles (just used large packing tape to go over the top to secure the labels on and to make the ink not run if they got wet).


They were perfect for the kids to play with… 


And also for some good pictures beforehand. 🙂 

I ordered these custom suckers from Oriental Trading and made/printed this little sign to go with them.jts-1st-bday-007

Outside tables: mix of table cloths from Dollar Tree and Walmart, solid color balloons, big green leaves from Oriental Trading, real bunches of bananas and little plastic cups of banana candies and some little paper monkeys hanging from the balloons.jts-1st-bday-009


I used two tiki torches and a string of leaves and put a picture of my son from every month (1-12) since he was born. jts-1st-birthday-009


Now lets talk about dessert. My sister in law is amazing. She made all the desserts for this special day. The cupcakes were a mix of flavors: chocolate banana with peanut butter frosting and banana with banana frosting or peanut butter. And chocolate dipped bananas with either coconut or nuts. jts-1st-bday-020

My son had his own smash cake. It was banana cake with peanut butter frosting. He LOVED it … probably a little too much.jts-1st-bday-022


Here’s a few more party pics to end this blog post. Enjoy.


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Superhero Birthday Party

My son has been OBSESSED with all things superhero for a while. As part of his birthday present, we even re-did his room in a superhero theme. He was so excited. So it was a no-brainer when it came to planning his birthday.

The invitation was made by Red Barn Studios (https://www.etsy.com/shop/RedBarnDesignStudio) .. . If I haven’t said it before, she’s amazing. I just give her an idea and theme and I always end up with the best invitation. superhero invite1I started wanting to make a superhero centerpiece, as well as something that could be used in his room for decoration. So I bought these letters on clearance at Michaels and then found some old comic books my husband had and some Mod Podge. I will tell you – I am NOT a crafter. So this was kind of an experiment in a way. Lol.  So the letters are not perfect, but it turned out good enough.


I found these superhero comic fun kits in the clearance department (for like .75 cents a peice) and it just seemed like the perfect, cheap party favor.

Then I started planning the rest of the party based on the comic superhero theme. I decided we’d do some activities that would involve a few different superhero powers and also use the comic books I had found. After some brainstorming, here is what I came up with.


Table decor was easy. Just a plastic table cloth and some comic book pages.


This table had most of the superhero challenges we were going to do as well as the party favor talked about above. Challenges were: “Ironman fly”: candy ring pops that the kids put on and “flew” around the trampoline. “Superman breath”: The kids blew bubbles & put on superman candy bracelets.  “Villain vaporizer”: Silly spray that the kids used to spray pictures of villains attached to balloons around the backyard. “Hulk Smash”: (show in lower pic) The kids used hulk hands/gloves to punch a board and get a prize. “Spidey web”: They put on a spiderman glow mask and climbed thru a web in the hallway.


Superman breath: bubbles from Dollar tree. I found comic duct tape at Walmart and used that to wrap around the bubbles. Then I put Superman candy bracelets from Dollar Tree around the top.


Ironman Fly: Candy ring pops from Dollar Tree.


Hulk Smash: I made this board using: a tri fold board from Michaels, some paper bowls, a poster, duct tape and tissue paper. Inside each of the bowls is a different toy (found at Dollar Tree). Then we had hulk gloves already (as I said before, my son is obsessed. Lol). We attached it to some boards and then to our trampoline to make it sturdy.


Spidey Web: Used Dollar Tree streamers and put them all over in my hallway so that the kids could try to climb thru them. My son had a spiderman mask that has glowing eyes, so they used that to make their way thru the spidey web.

Dessert! This was fun. I wanted to keep with the comic theme and so I found an etsy shop (www.etsy.com/shop/LITTLEHOPECAKES) that made these fondant comics. These were perfect and amazing. img_3597


I made my own cupcakes and just put one edible comic on each. They were a huge hit with the kids.


This was the birthday boy’s cupcake. A number 4 candle topped it off.

I’ll end with some pics of the kids doing the superhero challenges. 🙂

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Minecraft Birthday Party

My son, Will, wanted a Minecraft birthday a few years ago. It was when Minecraft first came out and there weren’t very many things you could buy in the store, besides some items that went with Halloween costumes. So I pretty much had to piece this party together using those items and custom Etsy items. The party was a HUGE hit. I started with an invite I found on Etsy. If you’ve read my other party posts, I love using Red Barn Studios on Etsy (www.etsy.com/shop/RedBarnDesignStudio), because she can pretty much make anything you want. willbirthday

For the main decor, I pieced together a few different items to complete the look I wanted. I purchased some “grass” (www.amazon.com/Green-Grass-Tissue-Party-Accessory/dp/B004L6L79W/ref=pd_sim_ac_3) to use as a base for this table and my dining room table. Then 2 halloween “masks” – a creeper and Steve from Minecraft (www.amazon.com/Minecraft-Steve-Creeper-Exclusive-Costume/dp/B00A9YJU7G/ref=sr_1_3?s=toys-and-games&ie=UTF8&qid=1473186923&sr=1-3&keywords=creeper+head). And the Minecraft pick axe (you can find them now at Walmart, Target, Amazon). I thought it would be great decor, but the kids could play with it too. Then I just tried to find candy that resembled things in the video game. So: “pillows” (pillow mints), “dynamite” (red licorice), “rocks” (chocolate rocks), & “diamonds” (blue rock candy). I put them in different containers with labels on them, and then just printed little TNT labels for the licorice. The kids had gift bags and were able to fill them with the candy shown.twins-9th-birthday-parties-april-2013-021twins-9th-birthday-parties-april-2013-022march-may-2013-183

Then the dinner table. Grass, Steve head and a brown plastic table cloth (for dirt). march-may-2013-184

Gift bags. Custom labels with a necklace and cookie and room for the candy from above. march-may-2013-190


We found this awesome, free printable board game. You can find it here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0Bxx5h8X8MfR0VnlDVFA2aTQ2NVk . I downloaded it and had it sent to Walgreens and printed on their poster board. Then just printed the directions and pieces myself. The kids had a blast. They played this game, as well as played the Minecraft video game. march-may-2013-189

Unfortunately this pictures is a little blurry. But here’s my son Will, with his minecraft shirt and the cake. Making the cake was pretty easy. We just baked a cake and then used white and red fondant to create the look below. Everyone loved it. Minecraft success. march-may-2013-213


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Candy Buffet Birthday Party

Candy, candy, candy. Who doesn’t love candy? Although in hindsight … probably not the best idea to have so much sugar at a birthday party that is also a sleepover. Lol. Oh man. I learned my lesson for sure.

I’m not even sure where the idea of a candy buffet party came from to be honest. But, somehow that’s what ended up happening. It really was fun for the girls and pretty simple to do. We found an invite on Etsy that we loved and it turned out so perfect. emmasbirthday

I found random jars of all different sizes and shapes first. I got mine from Michaels and Ikea and a couple I already had. Then I purchased chalk labels/stickers from Michaels (with their wedding crafts) and put one on each container to label with chalk once I had the candy for each. I purchased candy from different places, once I finished trying to find the cheapest places or items. I ended up using a mix of Michaels, Oriental Trading, Dollar Tree and Nuts.com.The girls got to fill a bag with the candy they wanted and take it home as a party favor. march-may 2013 150 Decor was easy. Besides the candy buffet, we just had the dining room table set up. The girls had pizza for dinner and then I made Bubblegum Floats (http://www.ladybehindthecurtain.com/bubble-gum-floats). Yes… more sugar. Lol. But so fun for the girls to have. march-may 2013 163

You can find the table decor here: http://www.birthdaydirect.com/candy-express-party-package-for-p-37781.html , with just another candy filled jar for a centerpiece. march-may 2013 154

And lets not leave out dessert… of course more candy. Cotton candy cupcakes. My sister in law made these yummy cupcakes (http://www.cookingclassy.com/2015/07/cotton-candy-cupcakes). Let me tell you, those girls didn’t want any more sugar after that party, and for quite some time. twins' 9th birthday parties april 2013 005

That’s the year she got an American Doll for her birthday. She’d been wanting one for so long and she seemed old enough that we thought she could take care of it. She was so happy! The whole party was a success (but there will be no more sugar birthdays in our future – this mama was sugared out). march-may 2013 228


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Chocolate Spa Party

If I haven’t mentioned it before, my daughter and I normally come up with her party themes together. She normally says things she’d like and then we go from there – brainstorming and planning and now of course that includes creating a Pinterest board of ideas. We are the only girls in our house, so it’s definitely something we enjoy and bond over. Originally she wanted to take her friends and go to a place to get pedicures. That was so expensive and they would just get pedicures and leave, nothing to take with them and then we’d still have to figure out dessert. So we decided we’d bring the spa to us, with a little twist – Chocolate! We started researching how to make our own face masks and scrubs. And so this party was born.

We used Google a lot! First I googled “water images” and then found one I liked and copied it to Word, so that I could add words and make labels or stickers, etc with it. I already had some empty picture frames too, but you could buy cheap ones at Ikea or Dollar Tree. I started with the entry . . . wanted it to be just like going to the spa. Flowers, candles and spa services.

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Then we set up stations based on the spa services we listed. For some odd reason I didn’t take a picture of the chocolate facials when I took this pic, but I have a pic of the girls wearing it. 🙂  We had a facial station where we did chocolate facials (http://tidymom.net/2013/chocolate-facial-recipe), with cucumbers for their eyes. I just used the same image that I had copied to word and printed them out on large label paper, and attached them to candles I already had. April 2012 birthday 022

And a pedicure station. The girls got to pick out their color toenail polish, then we used that for the pedicure but it was also part of their gift bag. My sister in law and I called the girls over in sets of 3 and soaked their feet in plastic tubs with water (that I got at Dollar Tree) and then we used the homemade scrub on their feet and some chocolate lotion we found for cheap at Walmart and painted their toes. April 2012 birthday 023

Here’s the spa set up. This is where the nail polish was that they could choose from. After they were done with their stations, they got to put together their gift bag – one from everything shows. We had:

  • Homemade bath salts. We used this recipe: http://www.marthastewart.com/265388/body-scrub . My daughter and I made some batches of this a day or two before her party and then packaged it in little party favor bottles that we found at Michaels and just bought sticker/labels that we put on the front of each and wrote on. 
  • Nail files. I think we found these at Target, but you can find anywhere.
  • Lip gloss.
  • Nail polish. Found these on sale at Walgreens.
  • Sleep masks. These were in the Dollar Spot at Target. Great find!
  • Toe spacers. Found at Dollar tree.
  • Pink gift bags with homemade labels. Found at Dollar Tree (pk of 12 for $1).April 2012 birthday 024

Here’s a few images of the girls with their face masks and pedicures.April 2012 birthday 048April 2012 birthday 045

Then it was on to yummy snacks and desserts. Chocolate dipped/flavored everything! April 2012 birthday 019

She was one happy girl. And the party was a huge hit!April 2012 birthday 051

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