Category Archives: party people

Champagne Brunch Bridal Shower

Sunday was my sister’s bridal shower. She didn’t want a bridal shower at all, but being the sweet little sister I am, I made her do it anyway. We both agreed that it wouldn’t be the traditional style bridal shower with those annoying “can’t say this word” games and such, but a nice brunch where we could get together, have a mimosa (or two), eat some food, and call it good.


I emailed the other bridesmaids, we agreed on the champagne brunch style and I volunteered to take the lead on planning. When it came to location, we found a winery known for their sparkling wines, which my sister loves. My sister, the MOH and I all headed out there one night to check it out and quickly decided that was for sure going to be the location. It definitely helped there was no location rental fee!

For the theme, I kept it pretty simple and played off the style and coloring of the wedding invitations. I designed the invitations and printed them off at home. All the decorations were kept pretty simple because of the beauty of the location…we had tables set among wine barrels, fermenting tanks and twinkling lights. I pretty much made the decorations myself and had the theme carry throughout. They included a bride & groom banner, a gifts banner (both of which will be reused at the wedding), food table cards with wine cork holders, table plaques for the mimosa bar, drink tags, and thank you card addressing, galvanized tubs to hold the pens, and hershey kisses with K + J = LOVE stickers on the bottoms.




For a “game” we played Bridal Shower Bingo where people wrote in gifts they thought Kelli might receive on a bingo card, then as she opened gifts if she opened one that they wrote in, they  marked it off. 5 in a row meant bingo and a prize! It gave people something to do while she was opening gifts. Prizes were simply Starbucks gift cards and more hershey kisses.

Our mom handled the cake. She found a picture of a cute design, took it to a local bakery and boom. Super cute, and delicious to boot.


All in all, it was a simple shower to put together, but it all turned our beautifully. I can’t wait for my sister’s big day!


The Monster’s Monster Party

I have been scheming and planning this Monster Party for months now! {Thank you Pinterest for planning my 4 year old’s birthday party!}

We’ve called Rylee “Monster” since before she could crawl. It’s a nickname that’s always fit and it’s always stuck. When we decided to throw her her very first “friends” party this year, I knew immediately I wanted it to be Monster themed.

It was nearly all DIY and my overall budget, including food was less that $100. The color scheme for the party was Blue, Green, Yellow and Red.

The Invite:

I bought some different Monster illustrations online that I used throughout all the decorations. They were “fun” monsters, not scary ones…that was key for me. All of the paper used is scrapbook paper I’ve had on hand for years…it was nice to see it go to some use!

Welcome Signs: {I mounted these to a red background and posted them on our fence posts along our driveway leading up to the house.}

Birthday Banner:

Pin the Eyeball on the Monster Game: 

Based of the Monster guys I was using, my mom painted that guy for us for the game. When kids arrived, I had them color their own “monster eyeball” while they were eating snacks and getting temporary monster tattoos! {FYI: tattoos were a HUGE hit!}

The Food:

The party was at 3 PM so I kept is simple for food. I did a fruit salad, a veggie platter, had string cheese handy, chips & salsa and also made mini hot-dog crescent roll ups. To drink I had a big bowl of Capri-Suns for the kiddos and lemonade, iced tea and soda for the parents.

I made the “Monster Eyes” for guests to take with them.

The cupcakes were all mini-monsters as well. I simply frosted them and dipped them in bowls of sprinkles. For the eyeballs, I used the rest of the dipping chocolate to affix M&Ms to marshmallows for eyes. The marshmallows were a huge hit!

The Pinata:

Rylee has been requesting a pinata for her party for about as long as I’ve been planning one. She always sees them lining the aisle at the grocery store. Since that was her one request for the entire party, we figured, why not!?

I snagged these little mini bags at the dollar store, they came in 3 packs. I made different faces on all of them. This way the kiddos had something to put their pinata loot in!

I searched and searched for a monster pinata and couldn’t really find anything I liked, or anything that fit in the budget. I found this egg pinata online and figured I could DIY it into a monster. Didn’t turn out too bad, eh!?

The Party Favors:

Ry’s school has been saving me tissue boxes for the last month or so. It worked out perfectly! I decorated them all as different monsters and filled them with “Monster Bubbles” {aka: bubbles found in a 3-pack from the dollar store wrapped with a DIY label}, a “Make your own monster” dough kit {aka: play-dough tubs filled with a few different colors of play-dough, again wrapped with a DIY label} and a mini monster beach ball.

The Thank You:

Overall, I’d say the party was a success…Rylee had fun and so did the other kids. Including her, there were 8 kiddos that participated ranging from almost 2 to almost 4 1/2. It was a fun group.

If you have any questions about what I did for the party, feel free to ask! It was super fun and all really easy to put together!

Inspiration and Resources:

Monster Fruit Salad
Monster Cupcakes
Monster Eye Balls (chocolate dipped oreos)

Monster Party Favor Boxes
Pin the Eyeball on the Monster Game

Monster (egg) Pinata 

Mini Monster Beach Balls

Monster Tattoos

And, a huge, HUGE thank you to my B, AKA Auntie Julia, for coming out and helping me get set up, keep things running smoothly, playing photographer and helping keep me sane! You’re the best, B!! xoxo

Insert Witty “Wizard of Oz” Title Here

Y’all? I’m beat today.

Between a crazy Saturday full of running errands, going OUT{!!!!} to a Halloween Party on Saturday night and staying up until almost midnight {stop laughing}, then getting up a 5 AM on Sunday to go hunting all day and Rylee peeing, yes peeing in our bed last night with subsequent trips into our room every 10 or 15 minutes for the next 2 hours, I am left with overwhelming exhaustion.

Happy Monday?

But, back to the fun. Saturday night we went to a family-friendly halloween party, complete with costumes. This is big people…HUGE in fact, considering in the entire 10 years Andy and I have been together we’ve never once dressed up for a halloween party.

When we got invited I decided I wanted to do some sort of family theme for our costumes. The Flintstones was suggested to me and since I have the cutest little red-head I thought it’d be a great idea! Andy was even on board for it. That is until he remembered…”wait, Fred wears a dress doesn’t he!?” On to plan B.

Since Rylee had already decided she wanted to be a witch for halloween, and Andy already has all sorts of scarecrow-esque farm-wear, I decided we go with Wizard of Oz.

After leaving one St. Vinnie’s store completely overwhelmed and empty handed, I did what any right-minded woman would do…I called my mommy. Then I headed to the fabric store to buy some blue-checked fabric and a pattern and proceeded to drop it all off at my mom’s house. {yep, my mom rocks!}

I made my own ruby-red slippers out of some heels I was about to drop off for donation. Add a little bit of red spray-paint, glue and red glitter and viola! Ruby red slippers.

{That left a trail of glitter behind me the entire night…}

Andy, of course, was totally anti-photo, so this is all you get. It was forced and at the end of the night and Ry had already shed her witch costume. Oh well…

But, we had a blast and as it turns out? My kid is pretty good at pumpkin bowling.

Beautiful Bride-to-be

My very best friend in the whole world is getting married in 20 days. TWENTY DAYS people! I am beyond excited for her and her soon to be hubs and so happy to be a part of the wedding. Yesterday we threw her a bridal shower. By we, I mean the other bridesmaids, her mom and me. It went great. And, even though it is pretty close to her actual wedding, to me, it was just kicking off all of the wedding festivities for the month! As the type-A person I am“Matron” of Honor for the wedding, I really wanted Julia to have the BEST shower possible.

Our original plan was to have the shower at another one of the maid’s houses, but when the invite list went over 40, we decided we should look at some other options! We settled on having it at the Oregon Electric Station. It worked out perfectly, it was really affordable, the food was good, we had all you can drink champagne and we didn’t have to cook or clean up. All we needed to do was handle the cake, decorations and games. I mean really, how does that not sound perfect!?

The Cake:
Julia’s mom handled the cake. Beautiful is an understatement. It was more like an actual wedding cake than a bridal shower cake! A friend of Julia’s mom made and decorated the cake and it tasted just as good as it looked!

I took care of the decorations for the party. There was no real “theme” for the shower. We just stuck with the wedding color of dark purple. I tried to make sure the theme carried throughout everything.

I bought pre-printed invitations online that were perfect. Dark purple and simple. I made matching return address labels, used a purple pen to address and used the purple “LOVE” stamps for postage. 

Julia really liked the banner I had made for Ry’s b-day so I decided to make one similar for the shower. At first, I was going to have it say “Congratulations Julia”, but then I remembered how annoyed I got when people would say to me “It’s your day” or “It’s all about the bride”…because hello people…it takes the bride AND the groom to get married! So, instead, I made the banner to say “Julia & Spencer = LOVE”. We hung it over the entryway to the room we had the shower in.

Carrying on with the banner and purple, I bought Hershey’s kisses, both regular and dark chocolate (purple foil). Then, I picked up some labels at Micheal’s that are made for the bottom of kisses. I made the background dark purple and had white lettering with things like, “J”, “J+S”, “6.26.10”, “LOVE”. We had them scattered on all the tables for a sweet treat that also worked as a decoration .

 On the tables, we also had little bouquets. Each bouquet was actually put into different pieces of china from each of Julia & Spencer’s grandparents and Juila’s Aunt Sandy. This was Julia’s mom’s idea and it was such a nice touch! She made little coordinating tags with purple ribbon, decoration and writing to go with each piece so guests could see who each piece belonged to. It was a very special way to honor their grandparents and Aunt Sandy.

The favors for the guests were little “cake” slices. I found this kit at Michael’s and bought it on a whim…and I am so glad I did! I stuffed each piece with little goodies for the guests. I figured not everyone would like the same treat, so each little cake was stuffed with different things. I used mixed nuts, chocolate covered raisins, Hershey’s Bliss chocolate (the wrapper was purple) and sour patch kids. We arranged them on cake platters that we brought with us and since we were 1 platter short, the rest of the pieces decorated the rest of the table. Each “cake” was decorated with some sort of purple.

Other touches included dark purple silk flower petals and clear glass pebbles to decorate around the cake and favor table. The basket for the thank-you envelopes had purple fabric in it and the pens on each table all had at least some purple in them.

For the games, we decided to go simple. With 30-40 people, it needed to be easy and relatively fast. We had originally thought about doing a wedding trivia game, but the other MOH nixed that idea when she read the questions and realized NO ONE would get any other them right. She decided to do bridal bingo instead. That was pretty fun. Everyone was handed empty bingo cards and they had to fill the spaces in with items they thought Julia would receive as gifts. As Jules opened her presents, they marked off the ones they had written down. The first person to get a bingo, won! For the prize, we gave away a gift certificate for a pedicure. We also played the “timer game” which is really not a game at all. We brought a kitchen timer and set it for random intervals while Julia opened her gifts. If she was opening your gift when the timer went off, you won. We did it 3 times and had 3 flower baskets to choose from for those winners. Lastly, as people were coming in, we had them address their own thank-you note envelopes. Then, at the end we had a random drawing from the envelopes and the winner took home a fresh flower bouquet in a coffee mug.

Another thing we did that was not actually a game, but something to keep guests occupied/entertained was to have each person write a challenge, or encouraging word or advice for the bride and groom on a note card and seal it in an envelope. Then, on the outside of the envelope, they wrote a date. On that date (AND NOT BEFORE JULIA!!!), Julia & Spencer will open and read the note.

Food was good. Cake was great. Game was fun. Things ran smoothly. All in all, the shower was a success!

Rylee’s 2nd Birthday Celebration! (Warning: It’s a LONG one!)


What a day! Ry’s actual birthday (photos to come) was on May 18th. A Tuesday is no good for a party and since I had to work the weekend before, we decided to have the party on Sunday May 23. This also happened to be Uncle’s 16th birthday, but he was gracious enough to share is special day for Ry’s party! I have been scheming and working on plans for this party for the last month or so. I was inspired by another blogger-mama‘s decorations she did for her little girl’s first birthday. I made all of the decorations myself and all I had to buy was a hole punch and ribbon. I also bought bright colored placemats for some accents.  We had a big taco bar with all the fixins’ that everyone seemed to enjoy. (I wish I would have got photos of the spread!) Daddy was in and out of the party but that’s another post for another time.

Since I can’t figure out how to go back through and type between the photos after I’ve inserted them into the blog post, I will go photo by photo here:

  1. I made this “Happy Birthday Rylee” banner using scrapbook paper and other scrapping supplies I already had. This banner ended up being the “theme” for the rest of the party. I am excited that I can use this banner for years to come too!
  2. Close up of “Happy” Right before the H, there is a little photo of Ry from the day she was born.
  3. Close up of “Birthday”
  4. Close up of “Rylee!”
  5. I made these too. Each photo circle represents one of Ry’s birthdays; birth, 1 year, 2 year. I plan on adding to these each year. I used the same scrapbook paper as I did with the banner. The little streamers are made from the paper scraps from the banner.
  6. A view of the house from the kitchen. You can see there are some triangle banners hung in the entry way and over the dining room window. I made these triangle banners from the paper scraps too.
  7. Auntie Keri helped me make homemade cupcakes for the party. We had chocolate and yellow to choose from. The tops were decorated with orange frosting and pink lettering that read “Happy Birthday Rylee”. The photo of Rylee in the upper right hand corner is one that Bliss did, this also helped add to the theme of the party that carried throughout. In the upper left hand corner were the party favors that we handed out to everyone that came. They were cards  that Bliss did that had a photos from Ry’s photo shoot. They made the perfect 2-year photos.
  8. Close up of the “Happy Birthday Rylee” cupcakes.
  9. “& JP” I made sure to include Uncle on the cupcakes too!
  10. Another view of the cupcakes and photo. This time including the tu-tu suprise!
  11. Ry was not enthused about the tu-tu at first! This is her throwing a little fit…it was too cute not to include a photo of this!
  12. She calmed down and did a puzzle with Uncle. I love the piggies! She even kept them in the WHOLE day! Her eyes look so big in this picture.
  13. I call this one “I couldn’t have picked a better Auntie!” HA! (See what I did there…it was a play on words)
  14. Time to blow out the candles!
  15. Opening up her gifts! And a good shot of the pig tails.
  16. Heading outside for her last present…big SURPRISE to come!
  17. I think this is a cute photo of us walking.
  18. A beautiful photo of Ry! One of my favorites of the day.
  19. It wouldn’t be a complete birthday party without bubbles!
  20. Trying out her new SLIDE! Ry loved it! And, for every readers future reference: a tu-tu is a great way to gain speed on a slide! I’m pretty sure that Rylee caught air at more than one point!
  21. Checking out one of the new swings! (SIDE NOTE: A special thanks to all the grandparents and great grandparents and all the other family that helped make this play structure possible (both with $ and the help to put it together)! We could NOT have done it without you!)
  22. Giving Kian hugs good-bye…so-so sweet! I can’t wait to have the kids play together this Summer!
  23. Mama had to have a little fun with the tu-tu too!

And…I just realized I included 23 photos! Holy Moly! As you can see, Rylee had a great time. Thanks to everyone who joined us for her celebration! She is so lucky to have so much family so close…We love all of you!