Monday, March 29, 2010

Weekly Challenge #13

Connect. Call/write a note-what ever you want to do to connect with 3 old friends.

How did last week go eating a fruit or veggie last week? Heidi said they had lots of mango and avocado. We tried some really fun new recipes. I'll post them this week-headed off to Riverside for the night.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Party part VI. Decorations.

Here's my last post of Annie's party. Hopefully you can get some ideas for a party or get together.
We were planning on Annie's party being at this cute park with tables and a trellis type cover where we could hang the puff balls and balloons. Weather did not cooperate. A rainstorm came through. Our friends let us use their clubhouse at their complex.

List. We made a 2 page list of every little thing we would need to take with us and set up for the party. We wrote down the order of activities and what we would need for each activity.
Bean bag Toss, Pin the Nose on the Clown, Doughnut Eating Contest, Birthday song and Cake, Cake and Cupcake Eating, and Open Presents.

Puff Balls. This came from Martha Stewart (I think it was for an adult New Year's party). I crumpled cupcake liners on a pen and then hot glued them to some old balls.

I didn't have tons of balls and the Styrofoam balls (suggested by the Martha Stewart Magazine) were too expensive. So, here's the cheap way to make them and they turn out just as beautiful:

1. Crumple cupcake liners around a pen.

2. Crumple magazine papers (any cheap paper) together (the more you do, the bigger the ball will be). I used white computer paper on the outside so you could just see white. Tape the ball/wad of paper with tape so it holds its shape. Hot glue the cupcake liners to the taped ball.

Keep going until it looks as full as you would like.

They can be hung with ribbon. I just set them around on the paper and prize table. I used the white ones the next week for a baby shower I threw.

Glitter Gems. Apollo helped me with these. We just dipped them in glue and then dipped them in glitter.

To check out the cake table, gift table, and other decorations, go back to the older blogs about the birthday.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Party part V. Games.

Since I did a vintage invitation, I wanted to do some retro games too.

Pin the Nose on the Clown. They all had their names on a round circle (the nose) and after 3 turns and wearing a blindfold, the had to try to put the nose on the clown.

Doughnut Eating Contest. The parents held the ribbons that held the pink frosted donuts. We just special ordered them from the Ralph's bakery.

Beanbag Toss.
We had a line for the big kids and a closer line for the little kids to toss their bean bags.

Pinata. There were two pinatas-big pink ones-that each had 15 ribbons coming out. Each child grabbed a ribbon and pulled. Better than swinging a bat at a party for a one year old.

Prizes. The prizes, books, coloring books, and stuffed animals, were wrapped in cellophane so the kids could see what they were picking. They were in basket from Target-a buck a piece. I bought 10 of them to organize my craft closet.

Weekly Challenge #12

Eat your fruits and veggies. Eat a fruit and/or veggie with every meal.

How did last week go reading something spiritually uplifting for 15 minutes a day? I'm setting this goal again this week. Heidi and I had a hard time with this last week.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Weekly Challenge #11

Try something new. Read something spiritually uplifting for at least 15 minutes per day.

How did last week go adding something new to dinner? Just little things made dinner more special and fun together. We ate together by candlelight-not so romantic with 2 little ones...but fun. I made some shakes and a jello pudding for dessert (all sugar free-still on our 1 month no sugar thing). The shake with dinner tonight was Costco berries, milk, peach yogurt, and some pistachio pudding powder. Heidi and I both went out to eat with our families one day. Heidi took a meal to a pregnant lady and one night they roasted hot dogs on their new firepit on their deck.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Party part IV. Invitation.

I scanned these pictures from a 1942 nursery rhyme book that my mother-in-law had. How cool is that. The one picture is Little Miss Muffet-we erased the spider in Photo Shop.

We did the whole invitation using Photo Shop and uploaded them to Costco's website. They have super cheap deals that include the envelopes for a bunch of them.

I have a bunch of retro books from Heidi and I think it would be fun to scan the pictures and use them to make cards.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Party part III. Cakes.

I looked around for someone that could work with fondant cakes and at a reasonable price-no luck. My friend Carol had never worked with fondant, but is great with cakes so we tried it out. She's amazing. I had so many compliments on they cakes-they were perfect. Carol did all the decorating on the cakes and taught me some cute things with the cupcakes. Here are some cake tips I learned from Carol and the book I borrowed from Sherri.

Cake Tips:
* Bake the layers for the cakes and the cupcakes ahead of time-just freeze them. I baked cupcakes the day before and messed up on some ingredients. I was literally baking or frosting cupcakes all day. The wedding cake part of the book said to freeze the layers-less to do close to the party.
* Trace the cake pans on parchment paper, cut it out, and then spray everything with cooking spray. The cake comes out perfect.

* Cut the top part of the cakes off and flip them over for really flat edges.
* Put the frosting in the fridge before decorating so it doesn't have that melted look. Leave the cakes/cupcakes in the fridge until ready-everything looks more crisp. We put the cupcakes in the freezer overnight and took them out with enough time to thaw before the party.
* Put a layer of frosting on the cakes and put them in the fridge before decorating so they don't crumble when they're decorated.

* Warm up the fondant in your hands to make it mold better.

* Carol used the butter box to flatten out the cakes (why spend money on fondant flatteners when you don't have to).
* Have the pictures handy of how you want to decorate the cakes.
* Do a trial run. We did ours a week in advance and from there we thought about other things that would be pretty and needed to buy.

Trial run.

Carol taught me how to make roses. Use a tip with lots of spikes. Just start in the center and swirl outwards. Simple but they turned out pretty.

The flower accessories were from Michaels. The fondant is also from Michaels-6 bucks for a cake's worth.

Annie's own little cake.
The beads in the bottom are just rolled up fondant.

Cake numbers 2 and 3.
I can only say I baked the cakes-Carol thankfully did the rest. The present cake turned out just like the one I took a picture of in Europe years ago.

Cake table. All the cupcakes and cupcake frosting was made from scratch with real vanilla-very irresistible. The cakes were made from a box-each cake had 2 layers.

Carol and Annie on her big day.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Party part II. Drinks.

Strawberries and water. That's it. No sugar or sweeteners.We first saw this idea at a yogurt place we went to and thought this would be perfect for Annie's party.

I threw a baby shower for Nikki to welcome baby Andrew. I tried the same idea with oranges-just sliced them peel and all. It was yummy. It might be fun to try other fruits.

Weekly Challenge #10

Try something new. Add a creative element to dinner. Some examples might be eating to candlelight, fresh flowers, dressing up etc. I think Carleton will just be happy that I have a meal ready every night this week.

How did last week go cleaning or organizing an area of your house? I threw a lot of trash out from our hall closet and from a garage box. I feel motivated to organize more now. Some things seem less important the more time passes.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Party. Card.

I had so much fun planning and preparing for Annie's party and found a lot of good ideas and wanted to pass them on. These ideas can be used in any party or gathering if you just change them up a bit.

Annie's card came in a pack for cheap at Target. It's glossy on the outside, making it easier for the stamp to stick. I think I found the stamp in the dollar bin at Michaels. Just stamp, sprinkle embossing powder, and "melt" the powder on with a heat gun (I hear a blow drier works just as well).

For the presents, I used "Brother Sister design studio" wrapping. I like that they a grid on the back of the paper so you can cut it out straight. The pink ribbon came from Michaels. I put a pink table cloth on the table with the presents on to start off the gift table.