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This Baby Shower Is For The Birds

I have a treat for you today. A guest post from Lauren, my accomplice at Pink Peppermint Parties. Enjoy! And don’t forget to leave a comment!

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A couple of weekends ago, several friends flocked together to celebrate the upcoming arrival of a tweet baby girl. This brunch shower stole its theme from her adorable nursery, which features a brown, pink and teal color scheme, polka dots, green gingham, lots of rick-rack ribbon and, of course, birds! It made for a fun and festive way to celebrate the nesting mommy-to-be.

First things first, here’s the invitation!

Birds seem to be all the rage in the party world this season. Go ahead…I dare you to Google bird shower. It’s overwhelming! However, Eleanor and I wanted this event to be as unique as the guest of honor, so we created lots of touches all our own. Take this “bird on a wire” giftline for instance. A spin off the common clothesline version, this one was crafted out of grapevine twine and had paper birds attached to clothespins perched on the line and holding the gifts. Please note that many of the birds are replicas of those found on the invitation—the paper patterns, too. I love consistency!

And a big thanks to a certain retailer for having the PERFECT assortment of precious bird inspired clothes to hang on the line.

Next up…the food! The table featured a beautiful floral arrangement in a copper container, bird statuettes and fun “nest” bowls for jams and jellies. We certainly did not eat like birds will all the delicious options this brunch buffet had to offer.

Each brunch item was labeled with these festive bird menu cards.

The table also featured napkin and flatware sets dressed with a gingham ribbon bellyband, an actual twig (spray painted white and crackled) and finished with a paper bird cut out.

Some of our paper bird friends were also found perched on drink glasses.

One of the hostesses took the invitation to her baker and together they whipped up this fantastic (and super delicious) cake which announced the little chick’s new initials.

Decorating the cake table was a square glass vase filled with birdseed and two long branches also spray painted white and crackled like the twigs on the napkins. Scattered on the branches were an assortment of feathered friends cut from the same paper and in the style as those found on the line. They were attached using mini clothes pins.

Remember these adorable paci mints Eleanor made for the “All In Due Time” shower? Well, they made the perfect addition to these mint nests, which were placed in gathering areas around the home.

Can you spot the adorable little nest the florist added to the arrangement for the drink table?

Finally, since no one should leave a party empty handed, we created these little favors for the guests. They were set up next to the door in a galvanized tin bucket on a stand so it didn’t take someone with eagle eyes to find them. Inside the bucket, birdseed anchored the favors and a lone branch with one bird holding a card let the guests know to take a favor to their nest. At the base stood a wooden birdhouse

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Inside the brown paper favor bags was a birdseed ball crafted from bird-friendly foam, peanut butter and birdseed. A piece of pink rick-rack ribbon was fashioned as the hanger.

And finally, the bag closed with a coordinating paper bird perched on a mini clothes pin. On the outside, a thank you message to each guest on a 2×2 card that matched the invitation.

What a fun celebration for a mommy-to-be who is truly a rare bird and a friend like no other. We wish her all the best as she nests and waits for her tweet baby girl to arrive.

Backyard Birthday Carnival

My college roommate, Gina, and her family just celebrated her daughter’s first birthday. It seem like just yesterday that we were throwing her a baby shower. Wait. Maybe that’s because I just blogged about it a few weeks ago. Either way, I can’t believe it’s been a year! Gina had a birthday carnival on the brain. That’s the ticket! So I whipped up some custom invitation options, and here’s the one she chose.

We batted around some other sweet ideas for the party, and I think you’ll agree that Gina did not disappoint. Enjoy these photos from Ava’s First Birthday–an adorable Backyard Carnival Party!

Here’s the birthday girl doing a little pre-party horsing around with the carnival games!

Gina’s husband, Matt, built this awesome ticket booth. Dibs!

Rain, rain go away! Bad weather caused them to go to Party Plan B. They hustled to move what they could inside, but no worries! Things were lookin’ mighty festive in there!

Look at this sweet personalized birthday banner done carnival style! It framed the window near this adorable table.

Pinwheels, animal crackers, cotton candy. Yum! I love that adorable striped fabric and LOVE LOVE LOVE what they did with it on the ceiling!

I hope they left it up. So festive! And speaking of festive, how super sweet is the birthday girl in this smocked carnival-themed party dress? Perfect. (Update: For those of you who have asked, the dress is Little Threads brand purchased from bestdressedchild.com!)

Check out this popcorn machine. I would so love to have one at my house!

And of course, something to wash it down with–Colonel Smith’s Magic Elixir.

And look at this adorable cookie bouquet. How fun!

The cupcakes picked up on the colors and the polka dots from the party invitation. The design is so simple, but so joyful! Seriously. Don’t these cupcakes just epitomize a party mood?

Everyone had a BIG time despite the rain, and when the little guests left they got these happy treats! Adorable.

Here’s a closeup of the favor tags.

Once the guests had all gone home, Gina sent out thank you notes on these matching folding note cards.

What a charming first birthday carnival! Thanks G, for sharing and to Matt for playing along. Happy 1st Birthday Ava!

All in Due Time Couples Baby Shower

Some college friends are expecting a little girl! They live out of town, as many of us now do, and quickly settled on a couples shower as a great way to visit with all the folks they don’t see as often as they’d like. Several girlfriends and I got busy putting together a sweet baby shower. I don’t get to do these very often so “Yea!”

I’ll admit this was somehow the first couples baby shower I’d been to, much less hosted. I was on the hunt for something feminine but not so much so that the guys would feel squirmy. I came across this Modern Due Date Shower from Hostess with the Mostess and decided that using mod printed papers and due date-themed elements would be a nice middle ground. If my math is right, the mom- and dad-to-be will be celebrating their 10th wedding anniversary this summer, and since this is their first baby I thought “All in Due Time” was a theme that worked well. Hope you agree!

Here’s the shower invitation!

All in Due Time Shower Invitation

I found a great set of coordinating scrapbook papers from American Crafts’ Everyday collection. I liked them because of their use of pink and green and the concentric (is that the right word?) circles–both themes in the baby’s nursery bedding. Plus, there was a number element that worked well with the due date theme. I used a strawberry colored envelope lined with numbers.

When guests arrived, they were greeted with this paper loop wreath also made from patterned papers.

paper loop wreath

I used a template I found online for the paper baby shoes that hung in the middle and were placed around inside the house for the party. Who could resist a little pair of Mary Janes? Not me. I added a small pink button closure to each.

baby shoes

In the foyer was the perfect place to sort of introduce our theme with some due date numbers. I picked these up at Michael’s, painted them and then distressed them a bit. I then hot glued them to some inexpensive craft boxes, which were covered with more decorative paper.

due date closeup

I also found this small craft figure, which I made preggars with half an Easter egg cut the long way. I dressed her in cut paper to match the numbers.

preggo

And here’s the full affect for the entry way complete with those beautiful pink flowering branches. I love Spring!

entry way table

This was my first time making party poms. Like many things in my life, I saw these and thought “I could totally do that.” These must not have been as bad as I thought because a co-hostess asked where I bought them. Yea! Props to my mom for being a good sport the night before and fluffing those with me! I found that to be the hardest part. Also like many things in my life, it’s just something you have to do a lot until you get good. With the help of my dear husband, I hung them with those nifty little adhesive hooks by 3M that just peel right off after use and tied a bow at the top to hide the hooks a bit.

party poms

cake shot no smash

There were five of us hosting from four different states, so we divided and conquered for the party. One got the cake–a yummy white two-tiered number with our coordinating circle motif and the sweetest fondant baby shoes on top. Adorable!

cake topper closeup

Another handled the flowers. They complimented the color scheme so well. I thought they were perfect!

flowers

Another the food, and so on…

We served chicken kabobs, roast beef on rolls, spinach and artichoke dip, fruit, bruschetta, and a yummy sundried pesto roasted red pepper cheese cake with crackers. Tasty!

Here are the candy pacifiers I fell in love with from HWTM. I used store-bought cookie icing as the “glue” to hold these together so they were edible. It seems I made lots of them, so we placed them around the house in candy dishes, and tied some to the wine glasses.

candy dish

wine glasses

I am always amazed at how easy it is to find even the unlikeliest of things in the colors you need. I found this mod polka dot fabric as well as the more floral one shown above. Then, I came across napkins that echoed both the color scheme and the fabric. What are the odds?

In keeping with our All in Due Time” theme, we sent guests home with these pocket calendar favors. I bought inexpensive vinyl-covered calendars and once again used our patterned papers by trimming them to size and slipping them into the vinyl to cover the original. They were tied with a bow and adorned with a tag reading “All in Due Time” and including the baby’s due date.

calendar close up

Their big day was also marked inside!

calendars inside shot

I borrowed these little suitcases of my daughter’s, which strangely enough, matched perfectly. Plus, I thought it was a subtle nod to both the idea of having a bag packed for the hospital and to hitting the road when the fun ended.

favors

The message says, “Time flies when you are having fun! Thanks for being here.”

favor outside message closeup

We had an evening of fun reconnecting with old college friends, and I think it was a really special night for Gayle and Michael. We are all so excited for them to join the club and see what all the fuss is about! Now we are left to count the days until their baby girl arrives!

Party Scores a Hole-in-One!

A few months back, I had a customer come to me with an idea for her son’s first birthday party. Golf! I confess that, having no golf enthusiasts in my family, I was a little thrown at first. But soon, Amaris and I both got swept up in the fun ideas, the bright colors and a hint at warmer weather in the bleak winter months. I just couldn’t wait to see how it all turned out, and I’m here to tell you, this mama did NOT disappoint. Prepare to have your argyle socks knocked off as you enjoy Amaris’ account of Bradley’s Hole-in-One First Birthday!

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The Course

I chose the red and yellow theme with lime accents. I wanted bright colors in the dreary winter…and most of the accessories and golf favors I found were in primary colors.  Here’s our invitation, which we mailed in a matching yellow envelope.

Hole-In-One Party Invtation

The Rough

I grew wheat grass as the centerpieces for each table and as an accent for the cake. I purchased the seeds at the local organic grocery store.  I started about seven days before the party–soaking the seeds overnight and then placing them in wet paper towels overnight before planting.  I had several round glass bowl vases, which I filled with sand and topped off with about an inch of potting soil. The wheat grass seeds can actually go directly on top of the soil.  The seeds germinate quickly, and it is amazing how fast the grass grows!

Pin and Cup Golf Centerpieces

The cake was amazing!  I loved the whimsical “topsy-turvy” golf flags! To make the cake display, I purchased an 18″ round plastic tray from the party store and covered the tray with about an inch of potting soil.  I put a small bowl in the center of the tray to reserve space for a clear glass cake stand to hold the cake.  (my cake stand measured 11″ in diameter and the cake was 10″)

Hole-in-One Cake

and here is the matching smash cake…

Smash Cake

I tried to carry out the “one” theme and use circles when possible, like on the stickers and favor tags. I made a Happy Birthday banner out of red felt to resemble a string of golf flags, which hung behind the cake table.  I also found yellow hand clappers, or, golf claps as I like to call them.

Pin & Cup Golf Centerpieces

Playing A Round

To entertain all of our golfers, I had several activities throughout the room.  Guests were greeted with their party favor, a set of toy golf clubs and golf balls to use during the party and take home.  I chose from several favor tag design options and went with the one with a curvy golf flag to mimic those on the cake.

Favor Tags Close up

Our “sand trap” was created out of a huge galvanized tub which was filled with several bags of playground sand and plastic golf balls.  I placed the tub on artificial turf cut to look like a golf green.
Sand Trap

The kids loved playing in the sand!

Sand Trap Play

I found a Par 3 Mini Golf Course made by Step 2 toys, which was fun! It was a great interactive toy for parents and kids. The older kids especially enjoyed it, and I even saw a few daddies testing out their putting skills, too!

Par 3 Party Game

Here’s our birthday boy trying out his skills.

Puttin' around

I also borrowed my nephew Jack’s golf cart rocker.  It was the perfect photo-op for parents and the kids loved taking turns going for a “ride.”

Golf Cart Rocker

Par-tee Eats and Treats

We served typical golf course style food–mini hot dogs, chips and rotel dip, mac and cheese and fruit.  At the last minute, I found some straw sipper cups online which were on mega clearance from Christmas and just so happened to be red and lime green with coloring page inserts.  I had tons of felt left over from making the golf flags and birthday banner, so I got creative and cut felt inserts with each guest’s first initial to personalize each cup.  They were perfect!

Personalized Sippers

We also had stickers to give out that said, “I played a round at Bradley’s 1st Birthday!”

Golf Sticker

I must admit, with all the excitement, I totally forgot to give out the precious stickers at the party.  Booo mama.  However, I did put stickers in each thank you note, which, I think worked well, too! Here are our thank you notes.

Golf Folding Thank You

I loved the Hole-in-One Par-tee theme!  Most importantly, the design work that Pink Peppermint Paper did truly set the tone for the party and made it extra special.  I really enjoyed that I was able to be so involved with the designs and incorporate my ideas.

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The Whole Fam

Thanks for sharing Amaris! What an amazing job and a big day with their little boy! Happy 1st Birthday Bradley!

Trash Talkin’ Our Way through a Birthday

So my son fell in love with a toy garbage truck at the store over two months before his birthday. When he asked to bring it home, I quipped about how he had a birthday coming up and unknowingly sealed my fate—a garbage truck party. Rubbish! I angled for a heavy machinery theme. Rejected. So I took a deep breath and dug in. Way in. Knee deep in garbage and recycling!

I looked all over the Internet for ideas, and most of what I found was dozens of other moms asking for help throwing a garbage/garbage man/garbage truck party. Awesome. Where to begin?

I started thinking about all the things you would normally find at a party and attempted to trash them up. We set the tone for trash with these invitations I created. Check them out at www.pinkpeppermintpaper.com. I used paper grocery bags to make the envelopes and mailed them with coordinating return address labels that hinted at our theme.

Garbage Party Invitation

I decided that we could turn our trash into decorations for the party.
I made flowers out of drink boxes and food boxes and used yogurt cups for the centers.

Recycled Flowers

Our house is hard to spot until you’re right on top of it so I rolled our garbage can up to
the street and tied some balloons to it. We supplemented our planters with recycled flowers.

Recycled Planters

Pennant banners made from old drink pouches and scrapbook paper in our colors—
blue, green and orange—hung above the main table.

Garbage Party Banners

It was decorated with layers of vinyl tablecloths used to help create a cheerful garbage route.

Garbage Route Tablecloth

Pages from old magazines trashed our party hats.

Garbage Party Hats

The iPod bellowed songs like Oscar The Grouch’s “I Love Trash,” “The Trash Can Band,”
Jack Johnson’s “The 3 R’s,” and “Stuck on Trash” by Recycleman & The Waste Band.

My son is always really interested when we see workers picking up trash on the side of the road. I found some inexpensive robot pincher claws online and added a sticker to make them Garbage Grabbers, and our garbage pick-up game was born. We told the kids that litterbugs had scattered trash all over our yard and asked for their help to make it all clean again. Some of them really got into it!

Garbage Grabbers

Garbage Game

There was some spontaneous can-stomping fun too. What boy doesn’t like to do that?
I also made garbage truck coloring sheets for those not into picking up trash.

The summer camp at my son’s preschool gave me the idea to make bottle cap necklaces.

Bottle Caps

At the party, the kids got choose their necklace colors, look for the charms with their names and choose from other designs like ballet-themed, football teams and super heroes. We had some garbage and recycling charms too like the 3 R’s and a frog from one of my stationery designs that said “It’s not easy bein’ green.”

I created the designs, punched them with a one-inch circle punch and glued them into bottle caps I ordered from a home brewing supply place. I used jewelry glaze to give them their 3D effect without the smell or mess of resin.

We also used the bottle caps on the candles, for cupcake toppers, on the main table and as decorations on the seedling trees we sent home with the kids. They got a small reusable shopping bag to carry home all of their loot.

Seedling Trees

Small, galvanized trash cans held some of the party food and flowers.

Garbage Pail Roses

Now for the junk food! We had Junkyard Dogs aka Pigs in a Blanket, Funky Chicken Salad, a Stinky Cheese Ball, Hubcaps with Cheese and Old Tires with Jelly—both Uncrustables sandwiches and the birthday boy’s favorite—Mini Mud (Meat) Pies and Fruit Fly Skewers.

Junk Food

Water bottle labels got people thinking about the potential after recycling.

Water Bottle Labels

The cake was a little garbage truck I attempted. Not my best work
(there were circumstances people), but the four-year-old thought it was the coolest!

Garbage Truck Cake

And here are our bottle cap cupcake toppers!

Bottle Cap Cupcake Toppers

I made the birthday boy a t-shirt for the big day using the garbage truck art from our invitation.
I used a dark t-shirt transfer with great results! It’s true. He’s quite the Trash Talker!

Trash Talker Tee

The other kiddos got garbage truck stickers that I printed for the end of the party.
It’s hard to pass up a good sticker.

Trashed Stickers

Out-of-town family and friends shipped us Reese’s birthday presents so in keeping with our theme, we recycled newspaper and magazines into wrapping paper and bows. And, let me tell you when you can get away with it, a trash bag made the perfect gift bag for an oversized toy!

Gift Wrapping

We thanked our guests with these garbage truck folding note cards.

Garbage Truck Thank Yous

And since we clearly hadn’t trash talked enough, later that week we made dirt cups to celebrate with his classroom friends.

Dirt Cups

Whew! Happy 4th Birthday to my little Garbage Man!

Source List

Bottle caps: online from a home brewing supply store

Choker Necklaces: Etsy

Garbage Grabbers: eBay

Galvanized Garbage Cans: www.galvanizedpail.com