Category Archives: party

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!


A Party for Reese

My original plan was to pretty much do nothing for Reese’s birthday. She’s one, who cares was my thinking. Then Saturday morning while sipping my coffee and writing out my grocery list, I was thinking about snacks & beverages for the party. I thought a lemonade stand would be fun and then it all spiraled from there.

The lemonade stand was kind of the center of the party…lemonade, sun tea, frozen fruits to put in the lemonade. Mason jars, paper name tags tied with twine and paper straws were a hit. There was also a giant tub full of other beverages; soda, beer, etc.  Then I had a “Summer is Sweet” table with different kinds of candy, I had a “Cool off with a Sno-Cone” station (the kids LOVED that), and a “snack stand” with chips & dips, a veggie tray etc.

Jul 21, 2013
I ordered cupcakes for the first time ever, {I normally make them} and I’m officially a convert. While she wasn’t so sure about 20-30 people standing around singing at/to her, Reese loved her cupcake.

Jul 21, 20131


We ended the party by opening her gifts. For being 1 she seemed pretty into it.



All in all, it was pretty low-key. Just family and our closest friends gathered around to celebrate our sweet Baby Reese. Exactly what I had envisioned.


Ry’s Angry Birds Birthday Party

I had some major grand plans in my head about how this whole Angry Birds birthday party would play out but when it came down to it? I was too tired to stay up late at night to get stuff done. I bought a lot more than I had originally planned instead of hand making it. I texted a photo of the invitations instead of mailing them. I didn’t have enough boxes for my big giant life-size angry birds game. It rained on the day of the party so our game was played in the house and the piñata was setup in our woodshed. And the camera battery on my DSLR was dead.

It all ended up kind of ghetto-fabulous but guess what, the kiddos didn’t love it any less.

And so…here is Ry’s angry birds themed birthday party by way of crappy iPhone photos.

Angry Book Marks are Angry…{and ridiculously cute}
IMG_4831 “life-Size” Angry Birds Game AKA empty boxes they took turns trying to knock over by throwing balls at.IMG_4849

“Homemade” cupcakes, crappily decorated by yours truly.
{You’d never have guessed I used to decorate cakes as part of my job, huh?}

Angry Birds Kabobs…three blueberries because when you tap the blue bird, he bursts into three!IMG_4858

Can’t believe my girl is FIVE!IMG_4854
The pinata…that little bastard was pretty tough to break.

But that just meant all the kiddos got plenty of turns to try!


We had our friends, good food, lots of treats and temporary tattoos…what more was needed?!

The nuts and bolts:

Decorations: I made the banner myself for Ry’s birthday last year. The swirly jobbers I got here. The piñata I got here. The cupcake topper rings I found here. The invite and bird printables I downloaded from here. The toddler life-size angry birds game I made out of wrapping various sized boxes in solid color wrapping paper. The table cloth and balloons I picked up at the dollar store. I also had Angry Birds color sheets out on the table.

The goodie bags: I bought Angry Birds corner book marks from my cousin’s hand made shop. I threw in angry bird Popsicles I found at the dollar store. I also included Angry birds tattoos from here as well as an angry bird disc shooter and sticker sheet I found at Target. I tossed them all into a brown paper lunch bag and topped it off with another printable from here.

The food: the angry bird kabobs were the only “themed food” we had…and I didn’t even call attention to it, so I’m 99% sure no one picked up on that. A pre-made veggie tray, cheese quesadillas and chips & guac rounded out the selection.

What am I missing? Eh, I don’t even know at this point. Feel free to let me know if you’d like any specific details.



When your kid is too sick to go to school on Valentine’s Day…

You throw them their very own party!

Rylee had been counting down the days to valentines day for over a week. So when she ended up sick with RSV & pneumonia, I knew she’d be missing her school valentines party and I knew she’d be absolutely crushed.

When I broke the news to her on Wednesday morning that she wouldn’t be going to school on valentines day, there may have been tears. (Hers, not mine. She’s a sensitive one.)

I decided right then and there that I wanted to try and make up for it in some way, and so the idea of a surprise valentines party just for her was born.

I had a big plan to get everything prepped while she napped the day away. Instead, she never napped (stupid meds). So while I mixed sugar cookie dough and she asked what I was doing, I lied to her and told her I was making dinner for Andy & me. Then I stayed up late cutting out hearts from pink, red and white paper, baking said cookies and taping red crepe paper to a yard stick. I kept things simple, yet festive.

When I got home from work last night, I sent her to her bedroom with her dad and sister and set to work. I brought in the red heart shaped balloons Grammy got for the girls, all the valentines from her classmates I had picked up from her school, I set out a valentine table runner (literally my only official heart-day decoration), hung the paper hearts and the streamer screen.


When I called to her that she could come out, her reaction was priceless. She seemed to be in awe over the whole thing. Her favorite part was the streamer screen with hearts taped to it.


After breakfast for dinner, {I had planned on heart shaped pancakes, but I just didn’t have it in me}, I put Reese to bed and her and her dad played the heart shaped dice game I had put together. She won, for the record.


After that, we decorated a few sugar cookies with frosting and sprinkles.


Throughout the whole night, she just kept thanking us for throwing her special party. There were hugs…lots of hugs. There were smiles…so many smiles.

I’m a big advocate for kids knowing they’re loved every day of the year, not just on a holiday that’s been overdone in the name of profit, but this year, she deserved a little bit more.



Mission accomplished.

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