Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Sporty-Chic Baby Shower

I was so excited to help plan this sports themed baby shower.  My mother- and sister-in-law were in charge of the food, and they wanted to do different kinds of sports balls (wait until you see them down below!!)  I knew the food would be delicious and adorable, and I turned my attention to the invitations and decor.

Browsing Pinterest for inspiration, I came to a realization: it is too easy to slip into "Juvenile" territory with this theme.  Which, if you are giving a party for a six-year-old sports nut, is perfect! But let's be honest. This baby shower isn't for the baby.  We are celebrating him, of course, but the party is all for Mommy.  

I wanted this new Mommy-to-be to feel special and pampered, so I really tried to focus on elegantizing (totally a word!) things a bit.  I can't see baby boy looking at photos someday and being disappointed that I girlied things up a bit, can you?

*The Invitations*

I used a scripty font (Isabella Script for fellow font-a-holics), a hand drawn banner, and a bow in the back to try and up the charm factor.  Also, please note the orange baseball and the teal football.  Going for grown up color scheme here!

How'd I do?  Is it pretty enough?  I was gonna add glitter... but I ran out of time (story of my life). How cool would Caitlin's name look cut out with double sided adhesive on the Silhouette and coated with GLITTER?!?

*The Food*

I told you that the food was fabulous!  And it all tastes even better than it looks.  They made chocolate covered strawberry footballs, baseball cupcakes and basketball sugar cookies.  The biggest hit, however, is that giant beach ball dessert pizza!  Yep, you are seeing strawberries, oranges, blackberries, raspberries, pineapple, blueberries, and mango!  All fresh, all delicious.  Is your mouth watering yet?


We hung this sucker right by the food.  You know, in case anyone was confused about whether or not they could eat those delicious things.

Close up because this thing looks amazing in person!  Again, the baseball's stitching is orange instead of red to go with our color scheme and the edges are DOUBLE inked.  The orange I had was too bright, so I followed it up with a light tan ink and it helped a lot.  Plus there's bows, just like on the invitation! They literally tie everything together and gussy things up.

*The Fun*

We finished things off with a photo booth which was a blast!!  I made some glittery bibs and pacifiers.  I cut them out on my Silhouette, but they'd be easy with scissors!  My backdrop was so ghetto--and I wish I'd thought to take a picture!  I picked a spot across from a window to have lots of natural light.  We tied this fabric up to a balcony and lowered it down to the ground. I love that you can't tell though!

Now I have tons of pictures of everyone who came with the new Mommy to be, and I can give them to her as an added gift!  In addition, the photo booth gives guests a way to get to know each other, be silly, and have fun.  I am in love with this party trend!

Here are some of the props I made for the photo booth.  Sparklies, my friends.  Just making sure we all know who the shower is for!  Once again, I used some ghetto tech--Elmer's glue for the heart, star, stripes, and polkas.  Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

This party was so much fun for me to help plan, and I think it was fun for the party guests too!

As usual, I would love to share some of the files I created so you can use them too!
Sporty Chic Photo Booth Props
I have included .SVGs, Silhouette Files, and PDFs so anyone can use them!! The banner shapes were from Miss Kate Cuttables (baseball) and Silhouette (banner).

I love to see what happens when you use my creations!  One easy way is to put pictures on our Facebook Page--it's such a nice way to say "thank you" and it makes my day happy.

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Friday, May 1, 2015

Watercolor Hearts "I Love You" Card

I loved loved loved my friend Bekka's Valentine cards in her shop, See What I Sea Designs, this year (f.y.i. I linked to her blog so you could see them, since she is taking a vacay on her etsy store as I write this--bad timing on my part.  But go check out her blog :)  I kept thinking about them and thinking about them.  They made me want to paint!

I haven't painted since Junior High art class...

Luckily, the project I had in mind didn't take as much skill as Bekka's cards did.

I just got some watercolor paper pretty wet with a large, flat brush (they call it a wash brush, turns out), and then added the colors dancing around in my head to the paper: oranges, pinks, purples, and yellows.  I dragged them across the page in streaks and let them run where they wanted.

After the paper dried, I stuck it to my Silhouette mat as well as I could (it was a little warped from the water) and cut out A MILLION hearts.  Not exactly a million, of course, but it felt like it when it came time to take them off of the sticky mat!  It made me wish I had a plain ol' heart punch instead!

I printed "i love you so much" on white cardstock, folded it lengthwise, and added my watercolor hearts with pop up foam.  Voila!

I love that each one turned out similar, but so completely unique!

While these may be great for Valentine's Day, they would also be perfect for Mother's Day, don't you think?  In a pretty pink envelope...yeah. It's a plan.  (Don't look, Mom!)

I loved pulling out a brush and acting all official, like I could really paint something beautiful.  I definitely haven't put in enough time to completely paint something lovely, like Bekka has, but I'm happy with the result of my first attempt, and proud that I blended a skill I didn't have with techniques I use all the time--like cutting paper, baby!

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Wednesday, April 29, 2015

My Battle Against Perfectionism :: Pie for Dinner

You know those days where you actually have a plan?
And it's a good plan?
And everything should work out perfectly to make that plan happen?

And then it doesn't?

Yeah, well.
Monday was one of those days.

I do my weekly grocery shopping on Mondays.
Depending on how the morning goes, we either sneak it in before my daughter's preschool, or the other two hooligans and I go while she's at preschool. 

I always do my meal planning before I go, otherwise our budget goes out the window.
And this week, we have a couple events that affected what meals I planned for on each day, like kindergarten orientation, and we always have a leftover night, but that has to be after certain meals that we always have leftovers from, right? 

Sounds a little OCD?
But it works for us. 

My glorious plan went flying out the window when my 18-month-old didn't nap at his usual time. 
I'm not totally crazy, I promise. I know kids naps go crazy sometimes, and typically nothing goes as planned with children.


NEVERTHELESS--I was determined to have Slow Cooker Breakfast Casserole for dinner, because I needed to use the bacon and green onions that we'd already had for a week, so I figured I'd just use the "cook on high for 2-3 hours" option.

I got it in the crock pot at 4:30.
BUT I figured that 6:30 wasn't too bad for dinner, right? And when I do this meal on low for "4-5 hours" it's ready in 4. So I figured 2 hours on high was a pretty safe bet.

We still had runny egg coming out of the middle at 2 hours.

So I figured, what the heck. We have a Marie Callenders banana cream pie in the fridge that has ALSO been there for a week. It won't last forever. So let's have dinner backwards!
Naturally, the husband and kids thought it was a great idea.

So we had pie for dinner.


The casserole still wasn't done at 2.5 hours.

So we threw some bagel bites in the oven and ate those. Nom nom nom.

It still wasn't done at 3 hours.

So we put the kids to bed.

And then I ate some casserole 3.5 hours after putting it in on high for "2-3 hours."
Maybe I need a new crock pot!?!?!

And life went {deliciously} on. 
Plus we had some awesome Breakfast Casserole leftovers for dinner tonight. 

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Instant {removeable} Backsplash for $30

Okay... maybe instant is a little bit of a stretch.
But I DID do it during naptime, so I consider that's pretty darn fast in my book.


Yeah, I know--ideally the quartz strip wouldn't be there, and the backsplash would go all the way down to the counter, and blah blah blah. But here's the deal--eventually we'd like to install a subway tile backsplash. Probably in a similar color to this. But it's not in the budget right now, since Mr. Handsome is working on finishing the basement. But I reeeeeallly wanted to get some color in there, because I didn't exactly realize how close in color the countertop was to the wall color we chose when designing our house. 


I almost cried when they first put the countertops in. Once everything else is there it's not really a big deal, but we chose things with a blue backsplash in mind. I just didn't realize how much the lack of color there would drive me crazy in the meantime.


On a completely related note, I spend a lot of time in Target these days, since my daughters' preschool is right around the corner from one, and who wants to drive all the way home for an hour and a half just to drive back out to pick up the tiny human, when that time could be spent walking around the haven that is Target? 

My point is that I stumbled upon this aisle while looking for their command hooks.
"Oooh! Pretty colors!" my mind said... and I naturally gravitated towards the blue diamonds (Devine Color Diamond Wallpaper in "Horizon"). 
Which, ironically, are not in this photo because they were all sold out when I went back to get a product shot. Go figure. 

I had to give it a try, though. I figured it would be a nice, fast, way to add some color. It's wipeable (vinyl, not paper), so when I spray cake batter from my mixer all over the wall, it's no big deal. It's supposedly easily removed, without any damage, which is awesome--RENTING, ANYONE!?!? And it's repositionable (peel-and-stick!), so if you don't get it perfect the first time, you can gently pull it off and try again. HOLLA!

(I can't actual testify of this quality, since I haven't tried to remove it. When we actually get around to replacing it with tile, I'll let you know. Figured I had nothing to lose, since when we actually DO remove it, we'll be covering the area back up anyway.)

So I got a nice fresh squeegee and a roll of wallpaper, and once the kids were snoozing I went to town. I had to reposition a few times, but it was a lot easier than I expected. the cuts aren't perfect. If you look close at the top ends (which no one with ever see unless they feel the unquenchable urge to squat down in my kitchen) it's not particularly pretty, which you can see below:

But again. Who really cares, right?

 I'm really liking the way it looks behind my spice jars.

I chickened out and didn't put it on the wall with the window. There would be a LOT of "cutting around" stuff, and I'm not sure what I would want to do along the top edge. Maybe a strip of thin moulding? Hmmm. It's suddenly sounding a lot less scary. What do you guys think? Overall, it was suuuper easy to put up, and it makes a HUGE difference, for only $30. I consider that a huge win. 

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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Free Printable: Thanksgiving Placemat

Hey everyone!  Thanksgiving LOOMS.  It's one of my favorite holidays--a time to laugh with my family and eat all the best foods together.  But let's be honest, it can add a teensy smidge of stress--especially if you're trying to make it special.  I was trying to figure out how I could add my mark to Thanksgiving at my Mom's this year.  After playing some Thanksgiving-themed games with friends, I knew I had my answer: a placemat we could write on.  The perfect thing to help us focus on being thankful, instead of being distracted by stuffing our faces with our favorite goodies.

Not that I'm dissing the goodies, my friends!  In fact, I was pretty tempted to cook a full course Thanksgiving Feast so I could photograph it with the placemat.

Someday, once I learn to cook a turkey like an actual grownup, I'm going to bust a move like that.

Here's a close-up of the game: Thankfulgories (You know, like Scattergories)!  Everyone tries to think of 10 things they are thankful for that start with the letter "M."  Then, one by one, family members read their list.  Any duplicates get crossed off, and the person with the most blessings listed at the end WINS!!

On the other side, I have listed questions to take turns answering--things like, "What do you appreciate most about the person sitting at your left?" and "Describe something that happened this past week that you are grateful for, and tell us why."

Mostly, I can't wait to see my grumpy uncles' faces when I tell them they have to play along.  It's going to be GREAT!!

Oh, and the back is blank--perfect for the kids to draw the things THEY are thankful for!

You can download the Placemat HERE.

I took the file to a local print shop and had it printed on 11 x 17 cardstock.  Cheap, easy, love it!

As always, I would love, love, LOVE to hear how it goes if you use these!! Drop me a line in the comments, or upload a picture on our Facebook Page

And tell me, please: what Thanksgiving traditions do you have in your family?

Friday, November 7, 2014

Operation Organization: My Craft Space

Dear friends,

We are about to get up close and personal.  Those of you with weak stomachs for disorganization may need to avert your eyes.  I am about to share one of my MANY greatest weaknesses:

I am prone to clutter.

There are other, not so nice ways of saying this, but I prefer not to think of myself as a slob or a messy! Really, I don't know what happens, but it's not very long after I clean my craft space that it looks like this:

The leftovers from former craft projects pile up around my computer and start to take over my husband's space too.  I'm sure the poor dear often feels he's being eaten alive!  The pictures simply cannot communicate the feeling of utter chaos that I start to feel in my space.  It's just sad, because that is not how I want to feel in my creative space!

I want to feel Inspired.   Empowered.   Free.

As I get to know myself better, I have realized that it is my perfectionism that causes most of my problems (say WHAT?!?  Perfectionism can make you messy?!?).  In this case, I become overwhelmed trying to tidy a space when I have to decide, as I go, where to put things.  If everything had a place, I wouldn't fizzle out trying to clear up.  But I am reluctant to jump in and organize an area until I have a plan for the ENTIRE room.  WHAT IF I DO IT WRONG AND HATE IT LATER?!?

But I have four kids who keep me crazy busy, and a mild case of ADHD which keeps me from focusing on any one project for very long, so a full blown plan for any part of my house has yet to happen.  If I want to keep my sanity, I'm going to have to let go of my desire for a perfect plan, and get moving. 

Before my clutter starts eating family members.

I will be researching Pinterest-y ways to organize my various supplies.

Because piling it on my kids' train table isn't working...  for some reason...

I will be adding shelves, drawers, and more counter space one piece at a time (I love you, Ikea!) and slowly but surely making enough places to put my ever growing craft supply (I love you, Pick Your Plum!) and turning this chaos into order.

Will you join me, my friends?  Will you lend me the strength of your listening hearts?  Because if I know you are waiting to watch my journey, I will push myself further.  It's going to be grand--a joyful rebellion against self imposed shackles--and against entropy too.

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P.s. How do you impose order on your craft supplies?

Does keeping your creative space tidy come easy, or is it a constant struggle for you, as it is for me? 

How have you been able to conquer your inner perfectionist?

Tell me all of it in the comments below.  I need your help!!

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Monday, September 29, 2014

Celebrate You Glitter Dahlia Card

I wish I had the photography skills to share this card in its true glory.  How does one photograph glitter?  Teach us how, Lauren and Jamie!!

At any rate, this was my first time playing with Silhouette's double sided adhesive and I'm in love!  I used this shape and the font is Amatic!

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