Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Presley's 1st Birthday Tea Party

My baby is ONE! I've said this a thousand times but FASTEST YEAR EVER! She is the sweetest, sassiest, most joyful little girl and we don't know what we did without her. God blessed us immensely when He made us her parents. Gah I could talk all day about how much I love that girl. 

So I started brainstorming about her birthday party way before it was time. I was just so excited!! The great thing about planning it so early (like 6 months early don't judge me) is that I had plenty of time to purchase and create things making this party super affordable and easy going. I made a list of everything I wanted to make and everything I needed to make it then collected those things over the next 6 months. I go to Hobby Lobby almost daily (they know me and Presley well it's kinda embarrassing). So each trip I made where I didn't have to use my digital coupon (because the item I was currently after was on sale), I bought 1 thing for her party with that coupon. That thing might have been a pack of streamers, tissue paper, napkins, cups...anything I needed that was on my list. Those items  typically ranged from $1.50-$5. I needed a lot of those little things, though. So overtime I was able to purchase each individual thing for 40% off saving a lot of money cumulatively. And purchasing  one super inexpensive thing at a time over months made it really easy on the bank account because I didn't go out and buy everything I needed all at once right before the party at full price. Now I know if you don't go to Hobby Lobby that often this is a dumb suggestion. I live 2 minutes away although I'm thinking about just moving in since I've basically paid for the building by now. Every time I leave one of my fabric-cutting or cashier friends I say "see you tomorrow" and they say it back and laugh. If I show up without my baby they ask me where she is because she's basically their mascot. One big happy Hobby Lobby family. 

I have a craft room that has all sorts of weird things in it so I had a lot of materials on hand which was convenient. This party was super DIY which is the way I like it. It included a few Pinstrosities but what's a good DIY party without at least one?! MAKE ALL THE THINGS! NAILED IT!

I'll start with her invitation. I handmade one then ended up scanning it on my printer and sending it to Walgreens. They printed them on cardstock and provided envelopes. 20 invites ended up being about $15 total. Please excuse the blurring of the address and phone number.

Here's what greeted our guests as they arrived.

To make the wreath I cut a ring out of cardboard the size I wanted the wreath to be (I actually used a large cardboard cake board I had on hand). I used my circle cutters to cut out circles of white, pink and mint paper and taped them onto paper doilies. I free-handed the one and cut it out of paper but if you want you can print it, cut it out and trace it. Super easy! I made the little flag last minute the day before with supplies I had on hand. Leftover table cloth fabric, a doily and little paper flowers. I sewed this on my machine but you can used hot glue as well.

So my saddest Pinstrosity were the balloons. I was going to wrap them in a layer of tulle and tie a pretty pink or white ribbon bow on them. I purchased all of the tulle, cut all of the pieces out in advance and was ready to go. The day of the party I sat down with my husband to cover them (I needed his assistance to hold them down because they'd float away) and they just sat on the floor. The one layer of tulle was way too heavy, making the balloons fall. RIP THAT IDEA! It was going to be pretty but you know what! We survived and all was good. First world problem?

My favorite part was the dining room where all of the food was, of course.

It was definitely a Costco party. I was originally going to make all of the food but then I was all "why would I do that when Costco exists"? I had enough on my plate and it was way cheaper and WAY less time consuming to buy it there a few days in advance. I got mini quiches (frozen and needed to be baked right before), spinach dip, pita chips, croissants, chicken salad for croissants, brownies, and flowers. It was delicious.

My awesome aunt is a domestic goddess and sweetly volunteered to help me by making something. I asked her to make lemon cucumber cream cheese sandwiches. I sent her a recipe I found and oh my goodness they were so delicious. It's weird because I don't like cucumbers but put them on this sandwich and I could hear the Hallelujah chorus. Click here for the recipe! She made them so adorable, too!

My grandmother brought some fresh fruit and I made this super easy marshmallow whipped cream I used as a fruit dip and dyed pink. I got so many compliments on it. Everyone was amazed it only had 3 ingredients and was so simple! I actually had to make it twice because I majorly over-beat it the first time. Poor Matt had to run to Kroger less than an hour before the party to get me more marshmallow cream!

Since I started my cake business in 2009 (fresh out of high school) I'd been most excited about making my own children's birthday cakes. You can imagine my excitement when my time had finally come. FREE REIN! I made the Presley plaque, "1" topper, flowers, bunny, and tiny tea set out of fondant and gold luster dust. I had never used lusted dust and I love it so much. I think my kitchen will forever sparkle because it got everywhere but worth it. I actually got a matte clear spray coating and sprayed the "1", bunny and tea set after the party making them permanent figures that she can keep forever. How cool!! Thanks, internet.

Here's her little smash cake.

Those ruffles gave me a major hand cramp but I love how they turned out. So soft and feminine. Perfect for a tea party! Thanks, YouTube.

I got 2 bouquets of flowers at Costco and a bouquet of baby's breath at Kroger and made a few floral arrangements. I got some wet floral foam at Hobby Lobby so I could but flower arrangements in 2 of the little tea cups on the main table.

My grandmother found the crocheted table cloth a few months ago at an estate sale for $5. All of my crocheted doilies came from that sale as well. I couldn't find a pink table cloth in the right color/size so I ended up making my own. I got the fabric really cheap at Joanne and it ended up being $10 total.

I borrowed all of the fancy things like tea cups and tea pots from my grandmother who is the queen of fancy things (with the exception of the cute little white one above that my mother-in-law let me use).

On this little table I provided a book I found on Amazon for $3 called "My Very First Tea Party" and asked everyone to sign a note for Pres Pres in it. I hope she'll treasure it forever.

I found these cute teapot napkins at Tuesday Morning for $2!

I decorated the china cabinet as well. I printed 3 8x10's and matted them in matching paper, the bunnies were actually mine as a kid that live in her nursery, and I got the "1" on sale at Hobby Lobby for $3. I traced it onto the floral paper I used throughout the party and glued it on. Super easy. I incorporated a lot of things from her nursery into the decor. I made the banner out of scrapbook paper, I wrote the letters in sharpie, and I actually just sewed the triangles onto a ribbon with my machine. Super easy! Who knew you could sew paper! (this was new info for me)

I made the tissue paper balls and hung them up using tiny command hooks so it didn't hurt my ceiling paint. They now hang from the ceiling of my craft room. I made 5. Each ball contained one pack of tissue paper from Hobby Lobby. I wish I had gotten a better picture of them.

I just tied misc ribbons I had on hand to my light fixture to make it festive. I had all of the serving dishes (thanks, wedding gifts).

Now onto the kitchen! I mainly just had this one sitting area that looked pretty. I made a banner of all of Presley's month pics I had taken and hung it up on the window. I matted each picture in alternating pink and mint papers and punched a hole in the top 2 corners. I have a scalloped circle puncher so I punched out 12 of those and wrote the corresponding month in them and glued them to each picture. I then threaded the ribbon through the holes and just hung it up. So easy! I made the polka dot table overlay with leftover fabric from an outfit I made her this summer. I matted 4 pictures of her to lay on the table (just in case you couldn't tell who's birthday party it was lolz) along with another paper doily.

I put a little baby's breath bouquet in the bathroom.

Living room aka the throne room. We have a bar which is perfect for serving drinks. I had pink lemonade sparkling fruit punch, cucumber mint water, coffee punch (my grandma's specialty), and ginger peach hot tea (because I figured with a tea party there should probably be some tea somewhere).

I added some raspberries to the pink lemonade mainly for looks. For the water I actually stamped flowers out of the cucumber slices with a tiny cookie cutter I already had. I threw them along with a few sprigs of fresh mint leaves and lemon slices in the water and let it soak over night. I got the tea for $3 (20 bags) at Marshalls! I was going to add fresh peaches to it as well but they're out of season. It was really delicious and now I'm obsessed with making myself hot tea. It makes me feel way too fancy even when I go days without brushing my hair or getting out of my pjs which is probably way too often. Don't judge me.

I draped pink and white streamers over the bar and taped them up with scotch tape. I also taped up some pink satin ribbon bows. I had the paper straws leftover from her gender reveal party and they just happened to match the party perfectly! The bulletin board was hanging in her playroom. I pinned up my favorite family photos from this past year. I made the drink labels out of little paper doily-esque things I found on the papercrafting aisle at Hobby Lobby. They were on sale $2 for 12 of them and there were 3 or 4 different kinds.

I served the tea with milk, stirrer sticks and homemade sugar "cubes." Yes! Homemade! You can make sugar cubes! This was one of my favorite touches because it was so unique. Thanks, Pinterest. I used cookie cutters to make hearts, flowers, and little "1"s. Click here for the how-to link.

Here's a better overall picture before I put out the drinks:

I made this "1" (just in case you hadn't figured out how old she was turning by all of the other 1's sitting around) out of foam core board. I cut out a big 1 to act as my base and cut out a lot of pictures and just collaged it until they fit and filled in all of the spaces and taped them in place! Super easy!

I borrowed this high chair from my aunt because Presley's high chair didn't match. Matt made so much fun of me for this but IT WAS IMPORTANT TO ME, OKAY! I love the antique feel of this one. I used tacks to pin up a king-sized white sheet behind the streamer wall. I tacked it into the wooden trim instead of the ceiling so it'd hold better and be less noticeable. Plus we went through hell to make our ceilings smooth 2 years ago and I refuse to taint their beauty. I ended up just scotch taping the streamers up and they didn't mess up the paint at all. We just very carefully pulled them off and they were fine! I made the (yet another) "1" banner out of ribbon scraps. I just slipknotted them onto a base ribbon. I cut out the fabric 1 and glued it onto the pink fabric and it was all really simple and turned out really cute.

Presley LOVED her smash cake. I've literally never seen a child go for a cake like she did. She was in heaven. She spent a few minutes massaging the top before I gave her a taste and she just went for it, destroying it in seconds. When we took it away she got so upset. I know. Terrible, mean parents. But then she realized she was covered in cake still so she kept eating. She was so gross and the grandma's gave her an SOS emergency buttercream bath. Worth it.

Best day ever??

We had so much fun celebrating our sweet, precious girl and can't wait to celebrate many more birthdays with her. Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoyed and are inspired!

Monday, January 4, 2016

House Update 2016

New year, new resolutions, right? There are some things in my house I've been itching to change and I've been binge watching Fixer Upper (I'm currently obsessed just like the rest of the world) which has made things a lot worse (or better?). So I thought NOW IS MY CHANCE! Start 2016 with a clean, fresh look. I got mostly money for Christmas this year (dat adult lyfe) so I decided to dedicate some of it to those (un)necessary house fixer uppers I've been dying to try. I know, before you go judging me for redecorating after only 2 years of being in this house (btw we moved in exactly 2 years ago this week. CRAZY), styles and trends do change way too much. I think I like one thing then a year or 2 later I'm bored and I'm ready to try something new. Being self-diagnosed OCD and obsessed with crafting and home decor paired with being a stay-at-home mom where I'm staring at my house all day every day makes things a little worse (well worse for my husband, better for me ;)). I promise I stare at my baby too. She's almost ONE and I can't believe it. I'm completely in love with her and still can't believe she's all ours (PS 1st birthday post to come within the next few weeks).

Here are some pictures of her LOVING Christmas. SO many prezzies! And more to come with her birthday being in January.

I redid my dining room entirely, my kitchen mostly, and my living room a little bit. I did all of this in less than a week because I have a problem. I had a little help from Presley's grandma's some during the day but I mostly did it after bedtime until like 12-1 AM. Matt says I'm impatient (which is completely true) but I like to refer to it as motivated.

First came the dining room. I had previously painted the dining and kitchen/half bath/laundry Sand Dune by Benjamin Moore. It really was a great neutral color but I got so bored with it after a while. I needed something more interesting. I also had made burlap curtains that I loved but I didn't like them up next to the wall color. Another thing that bothered me was that my entry hall next door is painted Wool Skein also by my bff Benji Moore. I absolutely love that yellowy neutral and still do but I thought it clashed with the Sand Dune. I wasn't thinking when I picked them out and it has bothered me ever since. My living room as well as our master bedroom is painted Sea Salt by Sherwin Williams (good ole Willie) which I'm a huge fan of. I was dying to paint the dining room that color as well. I love the white molding in there and thought the blue would look great with it and be a nice contrast. So the first thing that had to go? All that PINK! I loved my coral, yellow and green gingham fabric that I built the room around but, again, I got sick of it fast. I was ready for an upgrade.

Here's the original before when we bought the house. The whole house was painted this peachy neutral:

Here it was it looked like as of a week and a half ago painted in Sand Dune. Click here for my post on this version of the dining room:

Here's what I changed:
New paint (Sea Salt)
Recovered chairs, removed window valence
New curtain rod
Painted buffet furniture
New mirror 

This really wasn't an expensive change at all (about $150 total) but it looks totally different. 

July 2016 UPDATE Plate Wall:
I've always loved the idea of a plate wall. All of my Pinterest dreams came true when it finally became a reality. I found plates in all shapes and sizes from Target, TJ Maxx, Marshalls, etc. I used simple $2 plate hangers from Lowes. Once you collect all of your plates you just figure out a design and go for it. I love its Southern Living-esque charm.

The mirror and curtain rod came from Tuesday Morning. The mirror is actual wood and was only $80! At Pier One it would've been like $500. I was super happy about this find. The curtain rod is made of iron and came with extenders for windows up to 120 inches. It was only $20. I love that place. They have so many weird little finds. I got the greenery in the middle of the table there last year. The cute little preserved boxwood plant on my buffet table came from Pier One for only $15. I'm obsessed with preserved boxwood and want it all. Is that a weird thing to be obsessed with? Don't care. I love the pop of green it adds to the space.

I actually spray painted the buffet furniture. They have chalk spray paint at Hobby Lobby (Krylon Chalky Finish in Classic White). Did you know that was such a thing?? Life changing. It's usually on sale for 30% off but if not you can use your 40% coupon. It's usually around $8-9. It's not exactly the same but it looks very similar when dry. I used 2 cans. I ended up painting the top using my leftover Big Spender by Farrell Calhoun. I painted the inside of my china cabinet (on the other side of the room) this color and wanted to tie them together. Plus it would've been way too white with the it being up next to the white molding on the wall. I spray painted the handles with an oil rubbed bronze spray paint.

The chairs I covered in a fabric from Premier Fabrics. They also have other coordinating fabrics you could alternate with. I stuck with 1. I got 2 yards and it covered my 6 chairs perfectly with not much to spare. The 2 yards were $20 total. Not too bad!

In my previous dining post I talked about my dining table my dad helped me transform. Still love it so much. 

That was it! Not much to it but made a huge difference. I love the cool, fresh look it gave the room.

2017 DINING UPDATE (I know I have a problem)

At the beginning of every year I have this longing to redecorate my house. Or at least fix the things that bothered me throughout the year. I loved my 2016 dining makeover but a few things started bothering me: The chair covers and the plate wall. 

The blue clashed a little with my wall color and I could never find the inspiration to bring more yellow into the room so it felt out of place. I covered them again and sold the blue/yellow fabric on a Facebook resale site for $10. The new fabric was on sale. I needed 2 yards and it was $2 off a yard (originally $10/yard) at Premier Fabrics. So with the old fabric sold this update technically only cost me about $7. Totally worth it since I found this new fabric I'm obsessed with that couldn't match my blue walls any better.

Now my plate wall was buggin me. All I did was take out the color and make it more neutral. I love how it matches the chairs so well.


Again, although a great color, I was sick of the Sand Dune in here as well. I really wanted to go light gray. My craft room and our upstairs guest bath is Agreeable Gray by Willie and I love it. It didn't turn a weird color when painted (like green or blue) and it was just agreeable (for lack of a better word). I decided to do this in the kitchen as well. It's still a neutral but it's a lot more interesting, in my opinion. I painted the walls and then guess what happened..I hated it against my ivory-painted cabinets. The previous owners painted the cabinets to put the house on the market and they looked good but it has always bothered me that the cabinets and trim were painted a drastically different white. I got new cabinet hardware (hinges and handles) for Christmas (more of dat adult lyfe) and thought this was a good time to paint my cabinets since I have to take all of the hardware off anyways to change it out. I was super pumped about my new hardware actually. I didn't like the previous bronze hardware. Most everything in the house is brushed nickel including the light fixture in the kitchen. It bothered me so bad that they didn't match. I know this is like a true first world problem and I'm embarrassed admitting the things that go through my brain on a daily basis. I put these new nickel handles/hinges in the living room when we painted those built ins 2 years ago so I knew they'd look good. I wanted the cabinets more of a pure white that was the same as the trim. I had it matched and went for it. Not something I was planning on doing but I'm so glad it happened. It also just heightened my hatred for oil-based paint. THE WORST!! I really love the outcome, though. I painted the cabinets in the kitchen, bar area in the living room and the cabinets in the laundry room. 

Original before:

Here is the before as of about a year ago before we redid the backsplash. Here are those posts:

What I changed:
New cabinet paint and hardware
New wall paint (Agreeable Gray)
New curtains + spray painted curtain rod + diy curtain tiebacks

New After:

Ok so it's not a huge difference, especially in pictures, but I'm so happy with the change. I love the freshness the purer white added to the room (fresh is apparently my word of the day). 

I got the hardware and curtains on Amazon (both panels for $22). I made the tiebacks with leftover fabric from my window cornice/chair covers. I'm currently obsessed with the shop Printable Wisdom on Etsy. They have the cutest lyrics, Bible verses, etc printables available for around $5 for an instant download. I got the verse on my coffee station above from there. It was $5 and I sent it to be printed at Walgreens in whatever size and framed it. I got an 8x10. I got different ones for my bedroom and living room as well. Now I have them saved on my computer and can use them for gifts in the future as well! All they need is to be printed and framed. Definitely worth the whopping price. And they're so cute!!

I painted the laundry room and 1/2 bath Agreeable Gray as well.



I did get a new rug and door pulls for the bathroom. The pulls are mercury glass and came from my favorite place, Hobby Lobby for just a few dollars a piece (I only buy them there when they're 50% off). The rug, like everything I buy these days, came from Amazon. 

So lastly, our living room! 

I didn't change much but I feel it made a big difference. I did some rearranging and changed the mantle decor as well as painted the backs of the shelving with leftover cabinet paint (which was a trim/shelving paint match). Before they were blue (wall color) but I wanted them to look more like built ins and not shelves in front of the wall. Plus the gray shutters I added didn't look good right next to the blue because they're similar in color. I love the brightness the white added and now my shelf decor looks alot better than it did with the blue. Everything matches white! Lastly, I made pillow envelope covers for the couch pillows. I got both fabrics at Joann.

Original before:

First after. And here is that post.

And currently!

SHE'S SO CUTE!! (sorry had to)

I absolutely loved my painting I had in here. It was a wedding gift painted by my friend Lisa. It's beautiful and I can't tell you how many compliments I've received on it over the years. It was the exact colors of our last house and looked awesome hanging above our couch. I did some rearranging and ended up moving the poppy painting from my previous dining room into the living room because the colors matched so perfectly. To even out the space I added 2 shutters on either side. 

The shutters were actually 1 big shutter that I got at Sheffields. I think it was an antique because it looked pretty old. Well, I asked my brother and his sweet girlfriend to redo it for my Christmas present. They did an awesome job. They cut it in half, sanded it and spray painted it light gray. 



More from Printable Wisdom!

I love how these little updates have changed our home. Most of them aren't super noticeable but they made a big difference for me. Hope you enjoyed!


I'm so excited about these new beauties: Our new washer and dryer. Having new appliances makes laundry fun! Is that even a thing?