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Monday, June 25, 2012

Mickey Mouse Birthday



Every year I take the “go big or go home” challenge to planning my son’s birthday. Yes, I understand he just turned 3, lol. But really I have a reason. Here's some of the back story, when I planned his First birthday "Smurfday" (see the pictures here), I was a stay at home mom. I took my time and made it a very DIY event, especially since this was prior to the Smurf movie release and just simply there was nothing much I could purchase. For his Seconded birthday, I failed!! I was going to SDSU full time and I graduated the day before his birthday, so planning was not my priority. 
In order to make up for that last fail, with the help of Pinterest, and Felicia ( DIY for Mommies) as a sound board, I was able to make reasonable and achievable plans for his Third birthday.

We took Max to Disneyland for the first time this year, so it was only appropriate to have a Mickey and Friends themed party, "Mickey's Clubhouse."  Okay, so now I’m a full time Employee (Social Worker, part time photographer & blogger) and a full time Mommy, so I had to do this little by little. We made it work.
Granted that not everything turned out as desired…but does it ever? Max and his friends had a great time. 

 Here are a few of my favorite things from the birthday with links to my inspirations!


Here is the birthday boy. He is wearing his birthday ears he got while we visited Disneyland. The cake was inspired by a cake we saw at t local bakery, but being so crafty (frugal) I could not shell out the $250 for a cake. With the help of my mom, a retired Pastry Chef and my sister, who recently took a fondant class, we made this cake for a total of $30.00 which includes the purchase of the whole Clubhouse gang and candles (Dollar Tree).


The scene setter in the back is from Party City, and it wasn’t that expensive and it made a great addition to the cake table.


We also had a small dessert/candy table. It included Cupcakes, a may shift “Toodles” lollipop holder Mickey cookies (thanks to a dear friend) and some licorice, rice krispie treats and just yellow and red gummies. (Inspiration here)


Mickey Cookies, made by a good friend!!


Cupcakes, just regular white cupcakes (from the box) with wilton chocolate (candy melts) for ears.
The Minnie Cookies, I bought at Walmart. They are the Pillsbury ready to bake cookies. They are awesome.


Oreo Mickeys, as found on Pinterest.
And the Rice Krispy Treats also thanks to Pinterest.

*Items, before cutely placed on tables*

For Centerpieces, I used Mickey ceramic piggy banks that I found at a local Swap meet. They were rather inexpensive and a handy keepsake. I also purchased the Mickey boxes pictured above, found them in Mexico. I just had to paint them and add the buttons, to make them resemble the party invitations. Also, pictured above is an unfinished “Toodles” lollipop holder and a Mickey centerpiece.


We also had Mickey lollipops made of Chocolate. I bought that mold on one of my trips to Mexico, but I'm sure you can find them online


Black Linens, black chair covers, big red chair bows, and red, yellow, black balloons. 


We also made foam letters, was originally intended like the "Disney Junior" logo, but black and red worked an completed our look. The great thing is they are so light that a little bit of rolled tape and a push, then TADA, done!

To make it a little more festive, without requiring all the children to wear Mickey outfits, I made Mickey ears for all the children.

(learn how to make your own ears here)

But let's not forget, our main course…well Hot Diggity Dog! We had Hot Dogs!! 


We bought this bad boy from Walmart… and it was a hit. We had bacon wrapped hot dogs, regular hot dogs and chili dogs!!!


I got the hot dog holders from the Dollar Spot at Target.


Water bottle labels, look online cause it adds to any event! I've seen them done with just festive duct tape if you don't want to spend much time.


Birthday Boy and Piñata :
Max had a wonderful time, which is what really matters.
Mommy and Daddy with Birthday Boy…
I’m glad it’s over, but I'm ready to plan next year’s grand event… not sure what the theme is yet, but I’m brainstorming.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Sharpie Mug?






Great idea, just needing a little tweaking. I'll give you what we learned in this DIY process.


I came across this "pin" on Pinterest and I, probably just like you thought wow! So easy, cheap & just perfect for a gift. Well after doing a little investigating it's cute, but not so usable. "Kyoko has a blog" had a great idea! The only bummer is that if you start reading this idea is good for a desk, as a pen holder, not so much as a drinkable mug. Sharpie isn't toxic, but after washing it whatever you added to your mug will be gone.


We started with clean mugs and Sharpies, just as instructed. If you haven't begun you may wanna run out to a craft store and get some porcelain drawing markers, Pebeo Porcelaine Markers will work. Too bad we had already begun this idea before I started my research, but I found a way to save my little one's art if you wanna try it.


Time to add the art work with the tools you choose.


Next we did just as instructed, bake 30 mins at 350.


Out of the oven the colors are not as vivid and yellows & pinks have turned to a weird tan-ish color, but it was still cute, just not as cute as before.


Here's where I got lucky, in original pin after oven that was it, our mugs were done, but I happened to have a can of sealant on hand, just perfect for the project. Matte or Glossy is just for your aesthetic, but when picking out a spray finish make sure to read that it is good for porcelain projects and follow the instructions. I sprayed the mugs upside down to avoid spraying lip and inside mug, our decorations stayed on the outside so I didn't want to add anything there if I didn't have to.


After a few coats and a little drying it was done! We have (hand) washed it and guess what?! It's all still there! Great gift, just make sure to take the extra steps and give a great usable gift.


Monday, June 11, 2012

Pirates & Pixies Party

Our little pixie turned 4!

If your kid is still at the fun age where they are friends with any kid, no matter boy or girl, come birthday time it can be a blessing or a curse. Just kidding! But when talking to our kiddo about her birthday wishes we had a tough time at first. Hello Kitty was at the top of the list, but we really couldn't picture her little boy friends enjoying that so much. So we started thinking ok, well you are going through a Disney phase (for her 3 year we took her to Disneyland for the first time). Then followed that thought to, well your room is Disney Princesses & Fairies sooo that lead us to the pixie part. At the same time we were brainstorming she was getting more an more into pirates, so one day it just clicked! Pirates & Pixies!!! Or Pixies & Pirates, say it how you want. 


We wanted it to be a fun for adults and kids, told anyone and everyone to dress up. Though we had a special treat for each little one. All the boys got a hat, eye patch, mustache, and of course a hook. Most of the boys' stuff was easy to find, but the hook, oh that was a challenge. Knowing our group of little ones a sword just spell danger and hard plastic just as scary. Lots of searching and I found these foam hooks, the only thing is on Amazon the shops that had them would charge only cents for the item but a ridiculous amount for shipping. Well I found it again, but on Joann Fabrics' website! 1- the price balanced out even cheaper and 2- I found coupon codes all over the internet! Score!

As for the girls, I had a ton of fun! Halo Heaven was my shopping base. I recommend you like them on Halo Heaven's Facebook. Make sure you keep it in your feed because all the time there are specials! Let them know I sent ya. ;) From the site I ordered each girl their own wings to chose from, not 1 the same. I also ordered a ton of her flower hair things. My daughter opted to use it as a bracelet, but others added them in their hair. Bounce around the site because there are a lot of items! Even for Pirates. I ordered Riley her very own pirate hat, I mean it was her birthday after all. I found wands at Target already, but let me tell you I wasted time adding glitter glue to them thinking it would make them more sparkle, but it didn't. If I hadn't ran out of time I probably would had added tulle and ribbon to each.


Decorations were fun! A big toss up of Tinkerbell and her friends with lots of pirates. We had some items that she already owned an just brought them into the party for extra touches. She had a tiny wooden treasure chest, a Tinkerbell tent, a pirate telescope from Disneyland, and Disney Fairies Rescue Lantern.  One of my cousins was awesome and gave me some pirate stuff she had ordered off of Oriental Trading.


Although I had some stuff, of course I got more an we made more. 

There is never a reason not to tie your appliances in on the ambiance, so on the fridge in our room I added a photo magnet. We had the magnet already made but it was perfect! Riley was dressed as a fairy (photo by Natalya Fiore Photography)! We used that magnet to add a few quotes from the old Disney Peter Pan and some clip art, nothing fancy. 

"If growing up means it would be beneath my dignity to climb a tree, I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!"

Check out your Dollar Stores and 99cents Stores, there we found some butterflies that were added around. I also noticed they had a lot of pirate themed party decorations there. 


Much like previous post, Vintage Theme Bridal Shower I made a banner. Click the link, find where I made the "Soon To be Mrs" banner, because this was the same. This time I used "2nd Star to the Right" (from Peter Pan). Once again Dafont gave me the text, same 6x6 scrapbook paper pieces, but this time used fishing wire instead of yarn. 


On the television we had playing Peter Pan on mute so speakers on top could play a mix of soundtracks, Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, an Jake and the Never Land Pirates. I found a few random additional pirate songs that I threw into the playlist. Above all that a project that the whole family got involved in. One of my worries was that the pixie and pirate tie in wouldn't work so I printed out a bunch of coloring pages. Disney Junior and some from googling. Try looking up coloring pages Hook and Tinkerbell. I got some older images to work with doing that. After all done, one by one cut off the extra white and glue sticked each to it's on color construction paper.


I made a couple of puff balls following directions All Things Mamma. There are lots of "How To's" out there but I wanted a no wire needed way and her's was closest to my idea of how to make it work. I used fishing wire again, and since I was worried about it slipping off the middle of my folded tissue paper I secured it with a little masking tape strip on each. Follow her blog, she knows what she's doing.

After a bit of image searching I made these two collages that I printed and framed. The frames I used were a rustic gold look to them so it matched fairy and pirate, though wood may work just as well. Originally I was thinking to put each with the corresponding dress up items, but they ended up on the mantel above the gift area. 


If you are lucky enough to live by a Swap Meet, go! You never know what you'll find. Riley has some great people in her life and one of them found these ceramic banks at a meet and they served as easy table centerpieces.


What's a party without fun and games!?! So we had a little plank walking and treasure dig. 

We bought a child pool which worked for both games, start with the plank. In the pool we had a skeleton, some plastic snakes and bugs, but you can always opt for water. On each end was a plastic crate turned upside down. Our board of wood was secured by some rope and just in case we had parents all around to grab any little one that felt like walking zig zag instead of straight. I was surprised that all the kids from ages 2 thru 8 loved it and wanted to do it again and again. 



On the first time across we gave each child a loot bag. Bags were just old fashion paper bags. Drew on each like a pirate treasure map, a big red X after a dotted line trail. On back each kid's name since boys and girls got a little different of a bag. Each was preloaded with chocolate gold coins, tattoos, stickers and random fairy or pirate items I could get my hands on. Each kid also got a coloring book, prints from Jake and the Never Land Pirates and this Treasure Map. It worked like a prize for making it across and that way they had their bag ready for the activity.

Eventually we made them stop "walking the plank." We moved the crates still attached to board aside and dumped a huge amount of fake jewels, bead necklaces (like Mardi Gras beads), pirate coins, and jewel rings. Check out Ebay store 4angels4us2u.partiesrus, lots of stuff and one of the best deals I could find. I got stuff for treasure dig and goodie bags from there. Dump a bag of sand (from Home Depot/Dixieline) on top of goodies, throw show beach shovels on top and done. We gave each kid 30 seconds on their own then let them have a free for all. Yes, the skeleton, bugs, snakes were all still there an up for grabs.


Didn't take pictures of our fabulous b.b.q. or fruit salad, but the sweets always steal the spotlight. So you know, to keep with the theme there were goldfish and if I had more time I would had made "canon balls." My idea for canon balls was chocolate cake balls from my Babycakes Cake Pop Maker. Also there were lots of cool turn your watermelon into a pirate ship ideas I didn't get to use.  As for the cake and cupcake decorations, once again internet shopping. Halo Heaven with BEST DEAL on pirate flagsEbay was my Captain Hook and Disney's Fairies place. 

As for the fabulous Tinkerbell Candies, my guest blogger Yajaira made those! She found a mold and used candy melts (the ones we use for cake pop coating). Melt and pour. While wet laid a cake pop stick then let dry. Once dry she put each in it's own clear bag an tied shut with cute ribbon.


Another tiny detail was water bottles. Search online there is a lot of templates to make your own. All you need is printer, scissors/cutter and glue. The first time I attempted this I used craft glue, yeah not good. When it got cold and the bottle sweated the glue undried and made a mess. This time around a tiny bit of hot glue to each and no issues.

There is sooo much you can do with this theme! Have a blast, decide if you wanna try to throw some pixie dust in there. It was a great party for us and I am sure yours will be to!


Friday, June 1, 2012

DAD Frame Gift


Last year's Father's day my husband, Dereck gave strict rules to his Dad's day gift, "No money. PERIOD." So Riley & I got our creative juices going and this was the end result.

At least bi-yearly we make a trip to The Picture People. If you have one, look at their website because they ALWAYS have a coupon and they honor it along with their Portrait Club. Okay, I'm not a sales person, but I'll give you the short, for the cost of the membership (which costs less then the freebies) you get a 3 free sheets and 3 $10 off to use at your portrait sessions, so it pays to join. Since they had a awesome Father's Day promo and we were (still are) Portrait Club Members we thought up the brilliant idea of pics. Hehe. 

A little more back story, my husband is a Veterinary Technician. My friends think it's cute to encourage her to take follow Daddy's footsteps, so she has been giving plenty of scrub stuff. She has a fake scrub top and Doctor Bear. We also have a few real stethoscopes lying around the house do to Dad's profession. The same friend that gave her the scrub top thought it was hilarious to give Riley a giant stuffed dog. Let me mention this gift was just like the friend's real dog and had to drive home with us from Sacramento back to San Diego with a pit stop in the Sequoias. Along with all that fun we had plenty of band-aids, a extra benefit of being a household with a kid. 

                     

Pictures turned out awesome and I think I may had ended up spending a few cents on tax, but I don't even think it cost me that. Three pictures were my absolute must haves and then the idea of a DAD Frame popped into my head. Now to think on making that work without spending...

I was just about to make my own DAD template by either typing and printing or drawing it out when I got the idea to Googled it. So funny! Martha Stewart had a template! Score! It wasn't exactly as thick as I wanted it but that was a easy fix. I then checked out her idea on how to do this project: Father's Day Cutout Frame. It was really similar to what I had in mind, but I really didn't follow her way. I didn't like the unfinished back and I wanted it to be a little bit more from our little one as opposed to a just me project.

Feel free to follow her directions, but here's how we did our's:
You'll need- 3 pictures, scissors, Exacto knife, cutting mat, heavy card stock, glue, masking tape or glue stick, 2 paper clips, paint brushes, paint and or glitter glue.

For our pictures I knew this wasn't a photo safe, acid free project, so I copied the pictures to simple black & white, also this was to easy my stress about cutting these beautiful images up. We worked with wallet sized versions. (I placed originals in a handmade Father's Day Card.) While I was printing I printed out Martha Stewart's template.

I gave Riley the card stock color options, any heavy scrapbook paper I had two of. She totally stuck with scrub blue.

Placed my template on top of card stock and paper clipped together. Roughly worked outside the letters with scissors, like I said I wanted our letters a little thicker. When you are cutting just make sure you have a flat very linear bottom so it can stand on Dad's Desk or what not, If you want thinner cut right on the lines. After that bit was done, the very careful Exacto the inside parts (the picture holes) step. Make sure your template is where you need it, re-clip it and work on top of your cutting mat. No need to gouge your table. It also is helpful to go over any tight spaces you couldn't get to with your scissors, just be gentle and careful not to rip or you can start over. Once that is done paper clip that DAD piece of card stock on another and bust out your scissors, again. This time your just making the back to hide all the rough picture trimming, tape, paper clip and glue mess.

Now is the time that if your kid is like mine and wanted to add a little something extra to the frame to go for it. She painted a silver glitter glue to the frame.

If that the frame is dry time you can finish the project up. Adjust your pictures inside DAD's holes (picture's will be secured to the backside, the mirror image side) and trim and hold in place with masking tape. Just make sure tape is on the back of picture and not hanging over any sides where the front of the letters will see it. If you would rather let your child glue stick the back of the frame piece and then place pics in you can, just trim the images after they are glued down so there isn't any gaps in the windows of the DAD frame. 


Unfold your paper clips half way. Tape the flat shorter end of paper clips to the middle of each D. Now I let my daughter have fun gluing the back card stock on.


Maybe this helped you stay in budget or at least got you thinking.

Happy Father's Day to all you Dad's out there! 
An to my husband, the greatest Dad I know. 
Riley is a very lucky little girl to have a awesome Dad like you!