Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My Favorite Things Party

Can you say SO MUCH FUN!!!! Have you heard of them???? They are such fun! The concept is this...  (you can change the price limit and # of gifts each person brings to your personal standards)

Each guest was asked to think of their favorite things in the $10-$15 range. Then they narrowed it down to one item and purchased 3 of that item. They packaged it and brought it to swap at the party. Each guest then went home with 3 new and different items from other guests at the party. We drew names to decide who went home with what.

What a neat way to share our favorite things with each other!

I also gave away some door prizes! Thanks to Amber for donating a Tastefully Simple Beer Bread mix (def one of my FAVORITE things!) and a cookbook! If you are interested in some of TS amazing products, like the beer bread.... check her website out   www.TastefullySimple.com/web//AAdeshina
I highly recommend... well everything they make! :) :) :)

Some of the gifts people brought were a $10.00 Starbucks gift card, an exercise video and Skinny Cow snacks, A large teacup filled with drink mixes, Mary compact filled with make up, and I brought Our Best Bites cookbook.

I also served my favorite lemonade in these cute mason jars with cupcake liners and paper straws. I found the idea here. The lemonade itself is something my aunt TC always makes. I just made a really strong lemonade from the Country Time mix. Then juiced about 2 large oranges into it. I added sliced oranges to the jars before serving.

I also made each guest a little favor bag with pretty baking liners, stick matches and gel paste food coloring. Some of my favorite baking items!

I used scrabble tile stickers and scrapbooking paper to turn these plain brown bags into pretty gift bags for everyone to carry home their goodies in. 

It was a great time! I look forward to another one! :) 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Summer Fun: Space Day!

Planning summer activities can be challenging when trying to appeal to a varied age group. I wanted to do something fun and themed  (cause who doesn't like a good theme?) that ages 2-9 could enjoy. I did not want the 2 year olds to be left out, but I did not want the older kids to be bored. So here is what I came up with:

I got out the craft bin that is filled with scrapbooking paper, glue sticks, scissors,  markers, crayons, paint chips and stickers. These are items that are for the kids to use during any craft. They are quite enthralled when they ask me if they can use something from the bin and I say, "Sure can, you don't have to ask, those are your craft things." Their eyes light up just like I gave them a million bucks.
I did, however provide each kiddo with a long sheet of black construction paper and foil star stickers. I also precut large circles out of wax paper and gave each kiddo one of those. We started by talking about the planets, the older children named the planets and how many there were. They felt like big stuff because they got to teach the younger ones. Then I showed them how to crumble the wax paper  to look like a moon, because our moon has big holes that we call craters.  I told the kiddos that they could use paper or paint chips to cut out planets, starts etc. I also brought up my special scrapbooking punches (circle and stars) for them to use.

They spent the next 40 minutes making their master pieces of the Milky Way. They were so proud of what they made and were very creative. I love seeing how unique each one was.

I love the astronaut!

 I know it is hard to see, but that is "the cow jumping over the moon!"

(To make the moons, we crumbled up a precut circle of wax paper and then smoothed it out before gluing it onto our papers.)

Then after we were all cleaned up, we decorated cupcakes to look like aliens! I colored some canned icing with gel food colors. I had the girls decorate and eat their cupcakes first, followed by the boys. I set our cups of raisins, chocolate chips, decorating icing, edible eyes, and candy melts. Again, having the choice to use whatever they wanted thrilled them!

So what did I learn? Saying "YES" as much as you can is very important. Let them use scissors. Let them do projects their way. Let them use lots of icing and candy. Praise their work. Watch their eyes light up. Make memories.