Wednesday, April 27, 2011

pretty in pink

Yesterday was my mom's birthday.  She is so sweet and thoughtful and does so much for me and so I wanted to make her birthday extra special.  However, I am finding it a little more challenging to get out of the house to run errands with three small children!  So all of the ideas I originally had went out the window and I was left to improvise with things I had around the house like candles, napkin rings, and ribbon.  I was able to get her some plants (you can read about another gift idea using impatiens here) and a funny little metal sign that I thought was a perfect sentiment sitting in a pot of impatiens!  Although I wasn't able to get helium filled balloons I blew some up that I had leftover from my daughters party and tossed them on the floor.  I added some pink ribbons to an Eiffel Tower and wrote a message on the chalkboard.  It was a lovely evening celebrating a lovely woman.
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Friday, April 22, 2011


In honor of Earth Day today I thought I would share a cute idea for a party favor.  This would be fun for as a birthday party favor too.  I put some instant pudding mix, mini Oreos, and gummy worms inside a mason jar  (You could also use a recycled pasta sauce jar).  I attached a tag and on the back wrote the directions for making edible dirt:
Empty contents of jar.
Open pudding mix and pour powder into the jar.  Add 2 cups of cold milk and put the lid back on tightly. 
Shake like crazy!  (the directions on the box say whisk for 2 minutes- but shaking is more fun)
Pour the pudding into 4 serving cups.  I would use mini terra cotta pots!
Crumble the Oreo cookies on top and put sprinkle with some gummy worms.
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Thursday, April 21, 2011

baby's basket

(photo courtesy of Barnes & Noble)

(photo courtesy of Pottery Barn Kids)
(photo courtesy of Amazon)

(photo courtesy of Old Navy)

(photo courtesy of Pottery Barn Kids)

Even if babies can't eat candy you can still make them an adorable Easter basket.  I choose a few of our favorite items, some of which will be in my little ones Easter basket on Sunday.  Yellow is neutral enough for a boy or a girl and this would make an adorable baby or shower gift for someone expecting around Easter.  The book is the inspiration for this basket.  Owen loves all of the candy in his basket, especially his yellow marshmallow chick that is the same color as his favorite yellow blanket.  Include a soft yellow blanket, and a stuffed marshmallow chick and some cute chick shoes and the basket is complete. ( Last year I wrote about my other favorite Easter book.  You can read about it here. )
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colorful candy

This is the project that I came up with to use up the rest of the candy from my bunny trail mix. I decided it would be fun to use the leftover colors to make a thank you gift for a friend.  I bought some egg crates at Joann Fabric- those little ceramic dishes that are supposed to hold 9 eggs.  I sorted the candies by color and put a different kind in each section. In the middle I put a bunny candle.  I like that the recipient can use the dish after the candy is gone either for eggs or to hold jewelry on a dresser.  I made another one in blue and yellow for my mom.  I got the inspiration for this project after seeing this.   I am also pairing them with a potted pansy in coordinating colors.
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blog love

I am thrilled to be mentioned again on Sara's Party Perfect. She calls my blog a wealth of sweet, simple ideas. You can find it here.   I think her blog is a wealth of inspiration.  Thank you, Sara!
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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

easter goes b&w

I've seen a lot of chalkboard eggs around the web lately so I decided to make some of my own. I bought two bags of paper mache eggs at Michael's and used the chalkboard spray paint I had left over from my globe project.  I simply sprayed two coats on each egg and that was it.  I love that since they are not made with real eggs I will be able to use them year after year.  I also love that they will work perfectly with the black and white decor in my dining room.  Now I am working on making a centerpiece nest/ wreath for Easter. If I don't finish it in time for Sunday I am going to use them in little white egg cups as place cards instead.   I put some real grass underneath to add a pop of color. Aren't they darling? 
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Monday, April 18, 2011

hoppin' down the bunny trail-mix

If you are looking for a fun snack to send to school or to take as a hostess gift for Easter you can whip up a batch of this fun Easter trail mix.  Mine included:
bunny noses: pink jelly beans
cotton tails: mini marshmallows
whiskers: pretzel sticks
ears: pink & white candy corn
muddy paws: mini chocolate covered pretzels
I also dressed up some small water bottles with some ears and a cotton ball tail.  I found the ears and inspiration here
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Thursday, April 14, 2011

balloon party favors

The favors were one of my favorite details from this party.  Since my daughter turned five I put five special objects in a bag with a poem. (Special thanks to my friend Katy who helped me with the wording)

Thank you for coming to celebrate my day!
Here are 5 things to take on your way:
I think you are sweet, so here is some candy

You're worth more than gold, so a nickel is dandy

Balloons are so fun, like us when we play

And a sticker can mean that we never part ways

 You're a great friend, this I always knew-
So blow out your candle and may YOUR wishes come true!

I put all five objects and the poem in a green paper bag that I decorated with the personalized sticker and some polka dot ribbon!

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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

balloon bites

We had the party from 1-2:30 so just some simple snacks were needed.  The kids munched on popcorn, watermelon, "5" shaped cookies and balloon cupcakes.  I got the idea and directions for the cupcakes here.  I just changed the colors so that they matched the colors of our party.  The ribbon wouldn't stick to the bottom of the cupcake liners so I just placed them on the ribbon on top of our tray.  I made the cupcake tray with a box frame that I covered with wrapping paper.  I also added some polka dot ribbon around the edges.  I made the sugar cookies white with green polka dots in the shape of a 5 instead of a balloon. 
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the pinata

My daughter requested that we have a pinata at the party.  I actually found one that fit our theme too (the party store had one that you could attach a Mylar balloon to the front).  Perfect!  Although I love the idea of pinatas it always seems like they are either impossible to open and/or someone always ends up crying or getting hurt.  I think I solved both problems.  You can now buy pinatas that have magic strings attached.  Each child takes a turn pulling a string to see if it will open the door and let everything fall out.  It turned out at our party that the very last string was the magic one and the birthday girl was the one who pulled it! To avoid the mad dash for candy I filled little plastic bags so that each child could find one once the pinata opened.  In each bag I put a green balloon, a twisty balloon with miniature directions to make a balloon animal, some large gumballs and some tiny chocolate candy spheres.  There were no tears (and no parents needed to rip the thing apart) after this pinata which I consider a great success.
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

balloon fun

I had a lot of activities out for the children.  At most of my parties I like to leave the activities out for the children to do if they choose.  I find it is better (and easier for me) than having structured activities.  It takes into account that some kids may not want to do crafts or games.  Most of the kids just enjoyed playing on the playground but there were things theree for them if they wanted to rest and create something fun to take home.  I put the activities in metal green buckets on the tables with labels and directions.  The activities were to make animal balloons, play with rocket balloons, and do face painting.  We also did a balloon burst.  The balloon animals were from the Martha Stewart's craft line a few years ago.  I had some and ordered some more on EBay. The rocket balloons were a big hit.  You can buy 12 for $1 at the party store and they were a lot of fun for the kids.  The last activity on the table was face painting.  I found a really easy and fast way to do it here.  I found a balloon stamp in the dollar section at Michael's and I am going to use it for our thank you notes too.  The balloon burst activity was probably the most fun.  I saw this idea on Martha Stewart and adapted it to fit the colors and theme for this party.  The kids loved taking turns popping a balloon and then searching for the candy that came out. I also had the book "Where do Balloons Go" and a large blanket to sit on in case the kids needed some down time.  They didn't and it was a little to cold and windy to sit down and listen to a story but, I had it just in case. We also had a pinata that I will blog about next.  Although it wasn't a sunny hot day, it wasn't raining and the kids didn't seem to mind on elittle bit!
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Friday, April 8, 2011

Balloon Birthday

On Monday my daughter will be five!  Back in January I asked her what kind of theme she wanted for her birthday.  She said "balloons".  I asked her to pick a color and she choose green and when I asked her where she wanted to have the party she told me the park.  I really loved having her input and enjoyed all of her help with the planning and putting together of her party. I found that by picking a theme a few moths before her party it allowed me the time to find everything I needed and more!  For the invitations pictured above, I used personalized stickers from Tiny Prints and mini cards from Target.  I used a Martha Stewart stamp inside for the party details.   I saved a lot of money by making my own invitations and I think that they came out pretty cute!  I also used the stickers for the favor bags.  Stay tuned next week for all of the party details and prey for sunshine on Monday!
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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

butterfly snack tray

It is my turn to help out in my daughter's classroom tomorrow.  I always like to do a special project or bring  a fun snack when I go in.  Since they will be learning about butterflies tomorrow, I made these pretzel snacks.  They didn't take long to make and I had everything I needed in the pantry.  I found the directions here.  Another fun tip is to use inexpensive box frames as trays.  I took out the card board insert and put in a piece of scrapbook paper.  You can coordinate the colors of your party with the paper that you choose and then you will always have the perfect tray for your food.  I am using a bunch of these in different sizes for my daughter's birthday party next week.
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Friday, April 1, 2011

where in the world

Since my dad is a former geography teacher we seem to have a lot of globes around our house.  I saw a chalkboard globe once in a magazine or online and thought it would be fun to make one of my own.  I took one of our old globes and used chalkboard paint, the kind that comes in a spray can to cover it entirely.  It took no time to make and came out pretty cute.  I love how you can still see and feel the images and crevices that define all of the continents.  A fun and simple project that will bring us lots of entertainment.
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