Friday, December 30, 2016

June's 4th Birthday!

With baby Harrison being due ON June's birthday this year I really had to be on top of my A game so she could have a birthday party this year.  Normally celebrating June's mid-December birthday is an annual bust, being so close to Christmas tends to make things difficult.  So with our added complications this year I knew I needed to strike while I had energy.  Ergo I planned (like a crazy person) a December birthday back in August!  But it was so worth it!  Especially with Harrison deciding he was going to surprise us all and be a NOVEMBER baby it was good that things had already been planned and prepared.  

To say that June is obsessed with mermaids would be a bit of an understatement.  I asked her what she wanted the theme for her birthday to be and after a stare that said "what the heck is a theme" and me changing my question to "what do you like?"  the response was as follows:  "Mom, my things are mermaids, purple, blue, roly polys, lady bugs, birds and roses...and I'm JUST a princess!"  So I took the first part of her sentence and ran with it;).  

I decided that the party favors would be these cute mermaid tail costumes.  I made these using an idea that my amazingly creative sister-in-law came up with.  She has a tutorial featured here, so I was in luck!  I omitted the scales on all of them except Junes and Lucy's (I had made theres first and after sewing around all the scales I decided it wasn't worth it;P).  

Each girl got to find her tail, name-tag and seat at the beginning of the party, they were enthralled!

I put up some undersea decorations so the girls could feel like they were in an enchanted ocean scene: 

The treats consisted of some purple glitter sugar dusted white chocolate star "fish" and tiny pearl sprinkles on cupcakes, grape crystal light, chocolate dipped pretzels and beautiful sugar cookies.

These AMAZING cookies made my neighbor and great friend, Joni.  I had asked her to do these a few months ago and she pulled them off so beautifully.  She does such amazing sugar cookies and all kinds of other desserts and features them on her blog, I could eat and look at her culinary masterpieces! She is amazing!

(side note: I wish I had gotten better photos of these cookies!  I was so rushed right before this party, I only hope Joni got some, nudge nudge Joni;)

I told the girls that these pretzels were octopus tentacles and they were so cute as they made shocked faces and took big ol' silly bites into them...

The cake suffered a little bit by my mismanagement of time.  Running out of time in the end I had exactly 5 minutes to frost this cake so instead of scales she got "waves". However, if I am to be honest it didn't really ruin the effect so I was fine with it (having 4 kids, one a "terrible two year old" and one a newborn I've let go of a lot and realized that some things just aren't that important;)

Things I forgot to get photos of:  We did mermaid coloring pages, fished for crown crafts (see results bellow) and played pin the crown on the mermaid princess.  These girls had a blast, especially this cute little 4 year old...

It was a lot of fun, and what's most important is that we did it!  We were able to celebrate this wonderful girl coming into our lives.  She amazes and entertains us at every turn and I was so happy that we were able to make her dreams come true on her birthday!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Lucy's 6th Birthday!

Recently a friend acquired after my blogging abilities.  My answer was a mixture of how much I would love to and the fact that the dream was killed long ago by both my inability to motivate myself and keep it constant as well as the fact that I have kids and the 3rd officially killed it for me.  But when I really had a chance to think about it it really comes down to the perfectionist in me.  I want to be perfectly witty, innovative and aesthetically pleasing in every post and who on this earth got time for that?!  I was not born with that amazing ability to have my audience rolling with laughter with every post so the intimidation to my extremely high standards has killed my blogging potential.

That being said, we recently had Lucy's birthday and it was so much fun to plan.  She asked for an art party and the wheels in my head did a happy dance because this was something I could get excited about!  I love to plan parties (a little too much) which is why I keep my kids to an every other year schedule, otherwise I would go over board...and love every moment of it!

So I kept myself to a budget and a lowlevel stress and it was great!  Lucy loved it and her friends and sisters had a blast which is really all I wanted!

I wanted to give it a white clean backdrop and then build the splashes of color from there because really thats what kid art looks like. To make the decorations I simply had the girls go crazy with a lot of art and pattern techniques on a small stack of cardstock (I realized later that I could have used normal scratch, computer or butcher paper though because I ended up doubling it anyway).  Then I just cut out large circles using the diameter of a large soup can and putting the circles back to back ran them through the sewing machine to make the garland.  Doing circles left a lot of excess paper so I made a tiny garland for the chandelier out of all that (the girls loved that part;) For the table I got a roll of butcher paper and left it plain so it could get more decorated throughout the party as the girls created their art!

 A friend showed me how to make these paper mache letters using cardboard, egg cartons or cut up toilet paper rolls and tape.  So instead of paying for canvas' Lucy and I were able to work together and make each of her friends the first letter of their first names.  It was great for Lucy to feel so involved in the process.  Also, we bought all these aprons here for just over 6 joke!  

The girls loved the photobooth!  We played a couple filler games after the painting but then moved on to the photobooth so the girls could let out their silliness with props "in a Pollock-style painting".  We then printed them on-site so each girl got their individual picture with one of the group to take home with their favors! The backdrop was just made from a piece of butcher paper that my girls and I went to town on and hung up behind the frame that was attached to a backdrop stand with zip ties.  The printables for the props came from here.

 After the birthday song and presents each girl got to decorate their own cupcake and ice cream (there may have been some juice decorating going on too but you have to expect the unexpected with six year old girls;).

 By the end of the party the girls deteriorated into pure girl mayhem, dressed in all our dress-up finery from the playroom and dancing to kids-bop pandora station while playing on the piano and throwing the pile of white balloons at each other.  It was beautiful and we totally accept that kind of girly behavior in this house;).

Each girl was given a party favor of metallic paint with a rock candy lolipop to match our various paint blob colors, I got all these 12 paints here for under 4 bucks, with no cost for shipping!

 Lucy's birthday fell on a Sunday this year and since we were doing the party Saturday we just told Lucy her birthday was Saturday.  I just thought it would be easier... I instantly regretted my decision. When her birthday was in the program at church the day after the party and everyone was congratulating her on it I realized I couldn't hide it from her any longer.  After I came clean her response was a lot more understanding than I thought it would be and it included an exclamation of "So we get cake tonight too!"

Thankfully I have a wonderful and talented neighbor who also must have been totally in tune with this girl because right when I was about to get into making more cake and frosting she showed up with this beautiful rosette cake for Lucy!  It was amazing and Lucy loved it, it was even strawberry, Lucy's favorite! She was only a little excited as you can tell...;)

I'm not going to say that I'm determined to blog more because just saying it will make it a lie;)  But I will say that I am done holding myself to the gold standard because I love to do so many things that are fun to blog about so I've realized it's okay if it's just a random blog here and there that may not be a literal masterpiece! Not every time anyway....;)