Friday, March 30, 2012

Adorable ideas for an Easter themed 1st Birthday or Baby Shower

I shared with you yesterday some of my ideas for a global themed easter with items I found from Etsy. While I was browsing all the amazing items out there, I kept coming across some of the most adorable items that would be just perfect for an Easter/Spring themed 1st birthday or baby shower.

1./ 2.3. /4./ 5. / 6. / 7. / 8. / 9. / 10. / 11. / 12.

Aren't these just some of the sweetest things you have ever seen?

Although I have never choosen a holiday as a party theme before, I am really inspired by some of these photos! How about you? Have you ever had a Halloween themed birthday or Christmas wedding??

Hope you all have an inspired weekend! I am hoping to get my act together this weekend and finally post my Care Bear collection to my Etsy store...wish me luck!


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Global Easter via Etsy

As well as unpacking what I am sure was our 10,000th box this week, I also unpacked some of our Easter decorations. Which, may I say, is sorely lacking...nothing a little shopping couldn't cure, I am sure :)  That said, however, Jason now has me on a strict budget every time I leave to go down the road to HomeGoods (our new house is now suuuuper close to a HomeGoods store, and I miiight have gone a little over board since moving in. What can I say? Pillows make me happy.)

I have way too much going on this year with unpacking and party planning to even THINK about a DIY project. So, for now it is strictly dreaming :)

Since I am obsessed with all the beautiful colors of this season (think, aquas and tangerines), I thought it might be fun to to do a sort of  "global" theme. Throw in a bright ikat pillow or two, and I would be in heaven :)

Here is a little eye candy I found on Etsy:

Fabulous, right?
Do you decorate for Easter or Spring in bright colors or pastels? I think my eye is always drawn to the brighter colors.

Hope you have an inspired day!


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Dropping By

Hello :)

Things have been super busy over here (as always!). I am in the middle of 16548 DIY projects (and yet, finished with none. HA!).

Plus, I will be honest. I have been trying to figure out what kind of direction I want to take this blog. My initial desire was to focus on kid's design and parties, but I kept feeling this crafty part of me come forward. I do so many projects around our house that I want to share as well.
So, I have finally decided to keep it mostly about the kids, but to have an on-going series (name to be determined soon!) about our house. Also, my first goal is to tackle that "about me" section. ugh :) 

In the meantime, I recieved my new phone case yesterday, from a company BoutiqueMe.
I'm not going to lie; I did bookmark the website for Jason, as a....hint :) But he got to choose the design. And he chose well :) Two of my favorite things! Aqua and Chevron:

You see, I am  (this is only an estimate) the only person left in the world without an iphone.
Insert sad song.
Although my network finally carries it, there is not yet a need to give up my perfectly functioning EVO. Except for the fact that noone makes cool cases for my phone.
Until now! I have finally found a few sites that carry cases that are not bedazzled.
A happy girl.

I have a few fun posts planned this week. It's spring break up here, so I am home with all
 kids, so please bear with me :) Hope everyone is having a wonderful week!


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Care Bear Party Reveal

I am so excited to share with you the reveal of the Care Bear party I threw!

Over the past week or so, I have shown you bits and pieces of the party here and here including party favors, activities, and some of the rainbow decorations.
This party really was a blast for me to plan, and I hope you enjoy all the little detail that went into it!!

Details: I always think you should make the entrance to a party special to set the tone for the rest of the day. In this case, I made a balloon arch (again, super cheap/big impact) and custom made welcome sign. The stairs were hung with streamer (although by the time I took this picture, my kids had already gotten to it. Ha!) I had originally planned on having this set up around our front door, but it was way too windy that day.

Details:  Each child got their own, personalized packed lunch which included a sandwich, rainbow gold fish crackers, and skewer of fruit. I made the placemats out of white craft paper (purchased from Michaels), cut into the shape of a cloud. The placemats played double duty since the children also used them to do thier craft projects on later. The rainbow lolipops were found on Oriental Trading, the plates & cups are from Ikea (I LOVE being able to use what we already have instead of buying plates just to throw them away!), and that adorable frame was a thrift store find (of course!) painted white. Straws were purchased HERE.

Details:  Where to begin?? :) The jello cups were a recipe I found on The "clouds" were a combination of paper lanterns bought from Oriental Trading and hand made tissue pom poms. I bought the little Care Bear figurines off of Ebay. The cupcakes were supposed to look COMPLETELY different, but for some reason, the day of, when we made the frosting, it came out incredibly sticky and gooey (instead of the fluffy cloud likeness it was supposed to be!) . In the end I kind of like the way they turned out because it makes it seem as if the bears were actually playing in the clouds :) The rainbow cupcakes were super easy to make (one box of white cake mix, seperated into 6 bowls and then dyed. Layer the batter into the cupcake pan, and cook as directed!) but were a big hit for the kids. To play on our cloud theme, we had cotton candy "clouds" and marshmallow "cloud" pops.

Details: The ice cream was stored in half-pint mason jars I got from Walmart. They were kept in the freezer until it was time to eat, and then placed in a bowl of ice. I made the labels myself and just taped them to the top. The spoons were the inspiration for the whole ice cream bar, and the kids LOVED picking out their own toppings. The spoons were purchased from Etsy HERE.

And of course, a party wouldn't be complete at our house without some silly moments:

I hope you enjoyed seeing this party come along, bit by bit. It's been a long time coming since the first time I posted a sketch of some of my ideas on here. As always, it's amazing to me to see my ideas on paper come to life...

Hope you all are having a splendid week!!



Linking Up....

Bird's Party Blog 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day Weekend!!

Technically, St. Patrick's Day is over, but much like the rest of my life, I am a day behind :)
This weekend has been super fun for us. Not only did a leprechaun leave clues around the house for us to follow, but we got to spend the weekend grilling out with some of our new neighbors.

Here's a glimpse into the green craziness that invaded our house this weekend:

I am posting the final pics of the party tomorrow. I would have done it today, but THIS girl was too busy shopping today :) I have so many projects planned for our new house and I am so happy to finally get started on them.

Hope you weekend was as fun as ours!


Friday, March 16, 2012

Care Bear party part 2: Goody bags & activities

We have been having such AMAZING weather up here, it's been hard to actually sit down and get this post done :)  Tonight I am going to share all the activities that we did at the party, and (one of my favorite parts of any party) the goody bags!

I always think that one of the most memorable things for a child going to a party is what they get to take home with them! Who doesn't like a little bit of swag?

Each of our guests were welcomed with their own Care Bear shirt as soon as they arrived. This project has honestly been an idea of mine since last year when our daughter REJECTED the idea of having a Care Bear party (my, what a difference a year makes!). I love having personalized gifts that I think the child would actually reuse.

They were super easy to make, but those of you worried that this project is a bit beyond your scope, don't worry because I will most likely be adding these on to my Etsy shop as well :)

To begin, I bought plain t-shirts from Joann's. I was lucky and happened to stumble upon them when they were having some awesome sale on them. The only downside to these were that they only carried youth and adult sizes; a little too big for some of our guests (but perfect to grow into!)

For the image, I designed them on a program I have on my computer, CorelDraw. You could always use Adobe or any other drawing software. Since I am obsessed with detail, I made sure to have the outline look like fur and even created a red heart for the back.

Next, I printed it onto Iron Transfer paper (the kind specifically designed to transfer to dark fabric).

The yellow shirt is mine (FunShine Bear). I did this one first so if I totally messed it up I wouldn't feel too bad :)

1. Cut out designs as close as you can leaving little to no extra blank page
2. Follow directions given from your transfer paper. Mine had you peel off backing and placing it onto the shirt
3. Cover with parchment paper and iron on! (I repeated this process for the small heart on the back)

Next up, was the whole family:
Everyone was doing thier best "CareBear Stare" which is why they are all pushing out thier bellies!
(The little guy got a different shirt because I knew there was no way he was fitting into anything larger.)
The BEST part of this project was getting to chose the designs based on everyone's personallity. We knew going into this, that our little princess would be the rainbow one because that one is her favorite. Our oldest got Grumpy Bear, because, can guess :) The little guy is LuckyBear out of irony, and the kids voted on what Daddy should be (unanimously SleepyBear...although I am not even sure if that's the right name), because he is always falling asleep. Ha!
And, of course, we had to make one for our adoptive daughter, Eloise (the cheapest thing, I am sure, that this American Girl has ever worn! HA!):

I really think the kids enjoyed them, and it kind of set up a theme the rest of the party, where the kids would grab things that had "their bear" on it :)

Once settled into thier shirts, the games began! And by games, I mean one game and a lot of crafts.

First came this:

I couldn't find an actual game to buy, so I just got a poster from Ebay and made some heart labels on the computer that the kids used.

I actually had more crafts planned (lucky me--they were all rainbow themed, so I can use them this St. Patricks day!), but the kids were having more fun running like mad men all over our house, so we skipped on over to the scavenger hunt.

First I printed up some clues one the computer and placed them all over the house with little goodies:

The starting point was at the gift table where the goody bags were laid out.

(notice the adorable frame I found from Goodwill???)

The goody bags were hand made (after the big reveal this weekend I will go back and show a step by step of how I made them). Each child got one to hold all thier soon-to-be-found treasures.

Treasures included:

....and by the end of it most of the kids looked like this little hot mess of mine: wand and candy in hand, covered in paint!

The cookies were the finish line:

I made these myself, and though they tasted delicious, they definitly prove that I need to practice my cookie decorating!! I made clouds and stars. The suns I made all got rejected :)


I hope you enjoyed some of the details that went into making this party special. I PROMISE this weekend I will finally reveal the whole party. If I had to do it all in one post, we might be here all night lol.

'Till then, I hope you all have a lovely weekend!


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Care Bear Party, part 1


Today's post is kind of a sneak peak of the Care Bear party, because I am only showing off some of the rainbow decorations I made. I wanted to do this post first because I really think the decorations are beautiful and perfect for St. Patrick's Day (in fact, we still have ours up!)

For all my parties I try to think of creative ways to make a big impact on a small budget. The projects I am showing you today were made with some of the CHEAPEST items: scrapbook paper and crepe paper! Half the time I have this stuff on hand just lying around; if not I cut myself a coupon and head to the nearest craft store :) For this party, everything was centered around clouds and, of course, rainbows. The colors used could always be swapped out to match your theme, however :) But, I have to say, seeing all these bright colors sure have put a smile on my face!

The first project I made were the streamer "wind socks".  I have done this project for a lot of the parties I have thrown, because it so super easy and super cheap. My plan had been to have them hanging outside near the front door, however, it was much too windy during our party to do so. So, inside they went (and still are!)

Things you will need are:
Crepe paper (I keep a drawer full of just about every color so I always have it on hand)
Yarn, or some kind of sturdy string
Something for the circular base. I used a metal wreath thing I bought a few years back. Anything circular could be used, however as long as it is sturdy.

***Also, you could totally switch out the crepe paper for ribbon. This would instantly make it look more expensive and probably last awhile longer. If I was using ribbon, I would suggest hot gluing it onto the base instead of tape***

First, I tied 3 pieces of yarn equal distances away from each other on the base, and then tied them all together, making sure that when it hung it was even and not slanted.

Next, I cut out a long piece of crepe paper (twice as long as you want it to hang), and placed it over the metal, so it hung equally from both sides. I did the same with the next color, and then taped the two to the base with one slice of tape.

Repeat until you are there is no space left. I kept our color pattern the same as all the rainbows I used throughout the party: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.

In the past, I have been strict about having all the streamers the same length, but I really love how these are staggared at different lengths; it gives it this beautiful, messy look.
Simple, but beautiful, right??

The next three projects were all created using the same technique and all used cardstock paper.

Although I sewed all these together using a sewing machine, you could tape it instead. That is what I used to do before my sewing machine came into my life. However, sewing it is SO much easier and really makes it look so much better (and if you take care of it, you could reuse it for another party!), there is no way I would ever go back!

First, cut you paper into strips. Mine are about 1". Also, I used 12 x 12 paper, however in the past I have used standard 8.5 x 11, and it comes out just as great. Repeat with each color. I used 1 sheet of each color (6 colors), and it was enough for the two garlands I made.

Next, cut out your heart shapes (or any shapes you want!)

I used my Cricut machine because it really made it much easier to cut out the gazzilion hearts I wanted to cut. However, you could always use a punch or even do it by hand. If you do free hand it, consider using felt... I have seen a bunch of tutorials out this using felt, and it just looks amazing. 

This project evolved from seeing all this paper I had left over from my cut outs. I kept thinking how beautiful it would look hanging up and all the beautiful shadows it could cast on the walls.

Next, create a little production line and run all your pieces through a sewing machine. I was lazy this time, and didn't bother changing my thread to match each color, so everything is sewn with the yellow that was already in there :)  For the paper strips, I just sewed right down the middle. For the hearts, I did it just above the center, that way the top wouldn't be to heavy and flip over when I went to go hang it up. For the paper strips, since they are hung vertically, it is best to weigh them down a little with a bead or something. Also, make sure you leave plenty of thread in the beginning to hang your garlands from!

I didn't show the other garland (the one where we took our heart shapes from), because I just taped string onto those and hung them.

I have done these before, and everytime I am shocked by how much impact they provide!!

Combined with our "cloud" pom poms they really played up our theme :)

The heart garland we used behind our ice cream bar.

So, here it is: Super easy, super cheap Rainbow Decorations!!

I hope you are inspired to add some to your party!


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Care Bear Goodwill Take!

Care Bear madness went down this weekend.
And we survived :)
I am so excited to finally be able to relax and actually unpack our house (ha! what a concept, right?)
Not to mention how super-de-duper excited I am to share with you all the details.
Because it was AMAZING. In that everything-is-girly-and-full-of-rainbows kinda way.
As things are finally settling down here, and I am getting all the photos ready to show you and debut my new addition to my Etsy store, I will leave you with this quick pic of some goodies I happened to come across at our Goodwill store:

Although I think I might make a thank you card to go with the invitations that I made for my Etsy line, I just couldn't resist gobbling up these cards that I found for only 49cents (!). White crepe paper for the same price that I used as accents for our "cloud" theme and two adorable frames that were Target clearance items at one point for $1 each. (these babies were originally 9.99 each!) I used them to frame some signs that I created for our gift table and ice cream bar.

I also found (not pictured), a larger ornate frame that I painted white and a small Care Bear dog that I happened to spy from the opposite side of the store. All in all, it was quite the score :)

Over the next week or so I am going to share with you all the details of everything that went into making this party.

But for today, I leave you with this sneak peak:

Judging by all the candy and paint on here shirt, I would say,  a pretty happy birthday girl :)

'Till tomorrow.....