Monday, January 23, 2017

Playroom Updates and Things

Like every room in my house, the playroom/Presley's future big girl room is always evolving. I want it to be a fun, whimsical space that's really personal to her. As her interests develop and change it helps me to kind of mold the room into a place she really enjoys. Or maybe it has 8 million toys in it (only a slight exaggeration) so duh she loves being in there. But every time she points at something on the wall and smiles at it because it's something she loves it makes me so happy. We love spending time in here.

It hasn't changed too much from the last update but I've added a few personal touches that I wanted to share!

Here is the before before right when we moved in:



Here's what it looked like when I had Pres:


Here are my first decorative touches that took 32 hours (another slight exaggeration) that I immediately took down because THEY JUST WEREN'T RIGHT OKAY!


So basically I handmade all of those pom pom balls that I strung onto string and hung up. HAND. MADE. I thought they'd be cute but I just didn't like them. It was too much. The curtains were just some I had on hand and were way too dull for this space. With the white walls I needed something more vibrant. Especially for a little girl's room. I love the purple doors. Again, the white wall needed some pizazz. The ceiling is a light pink.

Then there was this:



Then I made this massive "P" that ALSO took 3233234932839 hours (actually not an exaggeration) that I liked for a day then I was like.....things have gotten a little out of hand here, Katie.

It was huge. It lit up and was cool but it was the size of a walrus. Ain't nobody got time for dat.


So I wasn't kidding when I say I've changed this room 8 times (is that the actual number? It actually probably is). And lets be real. This isn't going to be the end. But this is where we stand and I'm happy with it at the moment. It's a fun space with too many toys where we love to play and watch movies and kiss every puzzle piece before we put them together (I literally have no idea why she does this but I've embraced it and I'm all "you do you, girl").

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The thing that I'm MOST excited about is my new IKEA light fixture. It's so weird...just like me. I felt a deep connection to it the moment I saw it. It's like it stared into my soul and just whispered "yes." And I was all "Here IKEA take all of my money." BTW have you heard that MEMPHIS HAS AN IKEA NOW?? I've been 3 times in a month and a half which I don't think is too bad considering how magical it is. And lets be real. I mainly go for the hot dogs. 2 hot dogs and a drink for $2 *head spins around*. LET ALL OF MY DOLLARS BE TURNED INTO HOT DOGS! I love hot dogs....hot dogs.

It was $60 so it was probably the most expensive thing there (worth 80 IKEA hot dogs) and it was apparently impossible to install (because Sweden) but it happened and I love it (shout out to Matt and my FIL, Jeffrey)! It's just what this room needed. I've been holding out to buy a light fixture for this room (it has had a super cheap brushed nickel flush mount light in it for 3 years) but I thought I eventually wanted to move Presley's chandelier from her nursery over. She's not leaving her nursery any time soon and I just decided that that is too fancy and I wanted something more funky in here. *Enter IKEA*


I got this cute table and chairs on a local FB resale site and painted it. Pres loves it and sits here and "reads" almost every day. Also, she LOVES flowers (fake, real, flowers in books...she doesn't discriminate). She will spot one then start dramatically sniffing and it makes me laugh every time. I'll hear her start to sniff (it's that loud) and I'll look up and she'll be sniffing a page in a book with a flower on it. Makes me LOL every time. You should see her in the silk flower aisles of Hobby Lobby. She could sniff for hours. So I got her a little bouquet of silk daisies (that actually came from my high school bedroom that I saved for some reason). 



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Santa loves a good deal and stood in a 45 min long line at Walmart on Black Friday to get Pres the cutest Hello Kitty kitchen for Christmas. It was $40 on Black Friday but originally $70 (Amazon). It was so dang packed I..I mean Santa...literally held this huge box above my...I mean his...head to maneuver around the place. Which, let me point out, wasn't easy after my...his...large Thanksgiving feast that was just indulged in. Who needs a new years resolution to exercise or whatever when there's Black Friday? You'll lose like 39 lbs in one day trying to master the vicious crowds. That was a free tip. You're welcome. 

My MIL gave her the adorable apron to go with it. I hung that with a decorative Command hook. Have I mentioned that Pres is obsessed with cats? Hence the kitty cat birthday party she had a few days ago.


She went to grandma's like this a few weeks ago. She's in love she's in love and she doesn't care who knows it. 

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This cute window was originally blank inside but I added the poster and cat for her bday party and thought it was too purrfect to take apart. So I left it. And I like it. One day when she's actually ready to move in here we'll put her pink dresser (currently in her nursery) under this.


This bulletin board (super cheap from Hobby Lobby that I painted) is still decorated from her 1st birthday party because I'm in denial and can't make myself take it apart and update it.

I painted her this Pooh picture for Christmas. She is OBSESSED with Winnie the Pooh so I wanted to incorporate that in some way. She loves to point at it and giggle and say "Pooh Pooh" which makes my day.


Lastly, my MIL gave Pres the CUTEST kitty cat bedspread for her birthday from Target. As soon as she saw it she gasped, crawled up on the bed and did this:





I'll end this post with yet another picture of my majestic "ALF"


Hope you enjoyed!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Purresley is TWO: A Kitty Cat Party

Is this really possible?? So my little squishy baby is officially not a little squishy baby anymore?! She's two now so basically she's a strong independent woman who don't need no mom. Gah I just can't believe it. When you're pregnant everyone tells you how fast it goes by but you can't fully wrap your mind around that fact until they're born and you experience first hand how fast it actually does go by. It's definitely bittersweet. Of course with each stage I've experienced with my daughter I've found the beauty (and challenges) that come with it. Newbornhood was HARD but seriously sweet. I've never experienced exhaustion quite like that before but it was so worth it. I miss it. But then she grew and she grew and she grew until she was 6 months old! She was sitting up and crawling and playing and laughing. It was HARD but seriously sweet. Then that little girl grew! And she grew and she grew and she grew until she was TWO YEARS OLD! Yes some days I do feel like I'm in a zoo and it's still hard but seriously sweet. Presley is quirky, hilarious, sweet, full of energy and just so joyful. She loves to laugh and make other people laugh. She loves animals, playing with her baby dolls and Pooh. OMG I can't tell you how much she loves Pooh. She brings me the remote multiples times a day requesting it. Every day with her is an adventure for sure. IDK why God decided to let us be her parents. We are so blessed.



So Presley is madly in love with cats. I'm not a cat person. They make me itchy. We have a dog. Presley does not care. At 2 years old she is the definition of a crazy cat lady. Of course her birthday party had to be cat-themed. Pretty sure she had the best day of her life. And surprisingly there was very little Pooh involved!

Per usual I started planning this a million months in advance (ok like 6). But before you judge me I have a point to doing that! First, her birthday is in January right after the holidays. We're so busy the whole month of December so I like to have most things (decor-wise) purchased and made before life gets hectic. Second, around mid summer a glass of vino and I sit down on a date with Pinterest and plan her party! I make a list of everything I want to make then make another list with everything I need for crafting, food, etc. Once I have that list I make a note on my phone of all of the things I need. Every time I go to Hobby Lobby and am not using my coupon (because the thing I need is already on sale) I look at my list of what I need and buy something for the party! If I know all that I need early enough I have plenty of time to gather everything. This makes almost the whole party 40% off! It doesn't seem like you're saving alot when you're buying a single item for $4 plus 40% off but it really does add up. I end up saving about $100 in the end by doing this. Plus buying it item by item over a few months is alot easier on the bank account than buying everything at once. I buy almost everything at Hobby Lobby including plates, plastic silverware, napkins and cups. So what's the hassle in doing this? Just plan a little earlier (you're going to have to do it eventually anyways) and save money! Of course I can't buy perishable things in advance so I save that until the week before but everything else was ready to go!

So obviously this party was cat-themed but I wanted it to be super girly so I went with pink, purple and gold accents. Here are a few pics!







Instead of mailing an invitation this year I went the free-route and made a Facebook event! This is so much easier because everyone (well everyone with a Facebook which is basically everyone) sees it and they can RSVP right there! Also, did I mention it's free??

I made this glitter banner with supplies from Hobby Lobby then took a picture of it outside where the lighting was good. I just cropped it to FB banner size. I love this gold paper from the fancy paper section at HL! I bought like 4 packages of these cute cat stickers when they were on sale. I bought a big bag of tiny pink bows and hot glued them to all of the cats' necks. I also made an actual invitation and uploaded a picture of it along with a poem I wrote about the event!


“What was Presley’s first word?” you inquire.
If I said it was “Momma” I would be a liar.
Her first word was “keecaa,” I know this to be true.
Thus began her crazy love of whiskers, paws and mew.
Nothing brings her joy quite like kitty cats do.
She can spot one a mile away! Is that something you can do?
We can’t believe our Pres Pres is TWO!
Of course a kitty cat party was soon to ensue.
We’ve chosen January 21 as the party date.
It’s safe to say that she definitely can’t wait!
She loves you all so very much and hopes to see you there.
So RSVP, friends of ours, and join our cat affair!


Note: This invite looks alot cuter when the address isn't blurred. Better safe than sorry, people.

So back to the party...



What I made:
Invitation + "Purresley" is 2 sign
"Litterbox" bathroom sign
"Sign a page for Pres" sign
Cat ear headbands + sign
Cat head for the door
"2" with cat stickers
"MEOW" covered in yarn
Table runner + cat tablecloth
2 banners (Happy Birthday + Presley)
Yarn balls...LOTS of yarn balls
Tissue balls for the ceiling
Felt mouse
Picture frame
Garden flag

I found some chalk paint (no not what you're thinking) at Joann on sale for like $2. It's sidewalk chalk powder and you add water and it's actual chalk paint that washes away just like any other sidewalk chalk does. It is so vibrant and easy to use. I loved it! The pack came with pink and purple. How purrfect! (You might start to get sick of my cat puns but I LITTERally don't care ;) ) I'm sure I looked pretty ridiculous to my neighbs on my hands and knees painting what felt like 80 of these on my walkway. The things we do for our children.


We have a little garden flag stake by our front door. I sewed this pink flag for her tea party last year and just remade it to fit the theme this year. Again, just lots of hot glue. And scrapbook paper. And bows. And more cat stickers.





I kinda made up this cat head as I went along. I was originally going to cover this foam wreath with yarn balls but I got inspired and went in a different direction. I had all of this fabric already on hand! I just used hot glue to stretch and attach the fabric to the wreath. I then folded over the white fabric and drew that design freehanded. Doubling it over and cutting it that way makes sure both sides are even. Worked like a charm. I used a thick cardstock to cut out ears then covered them with fabric as well. The pink accents and eyes are felt and the whiskers are skinny pipe cleaners. I used white paint to add the little mark to the eyes. I think it really gives them depth and makes them look better. I finished it with a bow made of ribbon. This was so easy and turned out so cute! And I already had everything except the foam base!



For the living room I used things I already had. The window with fabric garland was hanging in Presley's playroom already. I got this cute polka dot white and gold poster from Hobby Lobby to put behind it along with a cute cut out picture of my in-law's cat Archie when he was the cutest kitten ever. I covered my shutters in yarn and made the banner out of paper, glitter sticker letters and ribbon (all from HL). I got the big glitter "2" at Joann for $5 (originally $10 but I had a 50% off coupon).



I served drinks from the bar in the living room. The tassle garland was $5 from Michaels (also originally $10 but I had a coupon).


For the signs/invitation I just picked out a variety of paper patterns in pink and purple along with some glittery paper and sticker letters. I used a black scrapbooking pen (Le Pen) to do the writing. Super easy and I love the textured, handmade look.



These cat headbands were super easy but time consuming. We invited about 40 people (I know! Big family probs) but I wasn't about to make 40 of these. Not everyone will want to wear them, right? So I made 20. The headbands came in a pack of 5 at Hobby Lobby for $2.99 ($1.79 with coupon) and the ears are made of felt. So 4 packs of headbands plus the felt made this project about $10. I got the cute little chalkboard bin at HL for around $6.



I started by making 2 paper templates. One for the ear and another for the pink inside. I doubled the felt over and traced the ear template onto the felt with a sharpie and cut it out! I doubled over the pink felt as well but they only have to be 1 layer so this was just for efficiency. Look at the picture to see how the ears are. They fold over so they can slip onto the headband easily.

I found that the easiest way to do this was to glue all of the ear pieces closed with hot glue before attaching them to the headbands. I was having a hard time centering the ears so I used a piece of tape to guide me. I got a headband, found the center at the top then put a piece of scotch tape there. I slide one ear on one side up to the side of the tape and hot glued it all the way shut and in place. I did the same with the other side. This ensures all of the headbands have ears that are exactly the same distance from each other and none are CATiwompus. Remove the tape and voila! I glued the pink on last. It needed to be scrunched a little at the bottom to fit right since it's being glued onto a curved surface. I had to work with that but it wasn't so bad. Are these incredible? No. Do people get the point? Yes! I love how they added to the party and Pres loved the fact that everyone looked like a cat so that's all that matters, right?




Another tradition I started with Presley's first birthday was to have everyone sign a page in a theme-related book. Last year I found a book entitled "My First Tea Party." Appropriate? YASS. This year I chose "If You Give a Cat a Cupcake." I got it in the mail a week before the party and I think Pres "read" it to herself appx 392 times. But now it's super special because each page has a sweet note from one of her favorite people! Something we'll treasure forever.


I had so much fun making these cakes for my girl! She called the big one her "keecat cukkake" and the little one (her own personal cake) just "cat." 

If you're in the Memphis area and need a cake HIT ME UP (Shameless plug). 




This was a weird thing to spend my time doing but what don't I do that's not at least a little bit weird? I made this mouse out of felt to put on my cheese plate. I have no idea how this happened. There's fluff and a glass ball I had amongst my craft supplies inside of it. I just worked with it until it looked kind of like a mouse. I guess my advice is hot glue. Lots of hot glue. BTW his name is Evinrude.




So these yarn-covered letters seemed like a great idea but took FOREVER! Since I had so much time to do this I just worked on one thing at a time when I could. I'd only tackle one letter a day to maintain my sanity. It wasn't hard it just made me want to throw stuff that's all. My advice is to figure out the plan before you start. See, all of the sides need to be covered so the yarn has to go every direction. By the time I got to "W" I was being lazy and the top and bottom are yarnless. No one knew because I had them up high. You'll know what I mean if you decide to do this. THEY'RE SO CUTE THOUGH! Worth it. My main goal with the initial wrap was to fill in all space. So I'd spend a lot of time and yarn wrapping methodically to achieve that. Once it was all covered I just started wrapping in random patterns to get the look I ended up with. I didn't want it to look perfectly organized. But lets be real, unless you're Martha Stewart that's not happening anyways. I also suggest hot gluing your yarn wherever you are every few minutes. This helps keep it from unraveling. Or if you drop it mid wrap you won't say too many bad words because you won't have to start totally from (cat) scratch. Speaking from experience here, people.

The banner I just made from paper, glitter sticker letters and sewed each piece onto a piece of ribbon with my sewing machine (or you can use hot glue). I actually glued them in place before I sewed so everything would be spaced right.

Making tissue balls is so easy. I hung the with little command hooks. 



Then there were the yarn balls. Guys, I bought like 8 packages of foam balls thinking no big deal I'll just cover all of them. LOL. I got through 3 packages including 2 different sizes. The original goal was to make some kind of garland that draped from the ceiling. Once I started wrapping that idea went out the window and tissue balls were sounding alot better. These really were easy just redundant. 

I think I had 5 different yarns to work with. I wanted a variety of shades and textures. Most was on sale for like $2 for a whole loaf. Can I call it a loaf? I have no idea what a package of yarn is supposed to be called. Or maybe it's just supposed to be called "a package of yarn?" Whatever now it's a loaf. For the larger balls I actually used foam Christmas ornaments. They're just foam balls but alot cheaper because they're technically Christmas so 50% off! Only $2 for a pack of 6. I started by hot gluing the end of the yarn to the foam ball then just started wrapping! Again, don't forget to use the glue to hold the yarn in place every few minutes. I left a string hanging off at the end so it'd look more like a yarn ball. I just laid them around the table and in misc places around the house.



I had a ton of leftover yarn so I covered both the dining room and kitchen chandeliers with it.



I got this "2" for $1.50 (it was 50% off). I turned it over and traced it onto this polka dot paper. I cut that out and just glued it to the "2". Add a few cat stickers and glue on a few bows and this was so easy.



I found these cute fabrics and couldn't resist them. The pink polka is from Hobby Lobby and the cats are from Joann. I made a table cloth out of the cats for my smaller kitchen table and a table runner for my dining room out of the pink. So easy. I just cut the fabric, folded over the edges and ironed them, then just sewed a straight line around the sides! That's it!




I was a little too excited about this idea on the bathroom door:


The food was simple and affordable thanks to Kroger and Costco plus a little couponing! Everything was less than $100. The decorations were a little less than $100 so this whole party was less than $200 total! Plus I paid for most of it over 6 months so it wasn't a big deal at all.

These were chicken salad ($10 from Costco) sandwiches. I got a good quality bread (Bunny) and used a cookie cutter (from HL) to cut out the shape! Be sure to make these the day of and keep them covered in plastic wrap until the party starts so they don't dry out and they will taste nice and fresh.


I couldn't decide if these were cute or terrifying. But I'd do it again. These little mouse cracks are just Ritz, Laughing Cow fancy cheese (I used an assortment of flavors that were on sale at Kroger for $3 for a pack of 8), almond slices (for the ears), chives (for the tails), blueberries (cut in fourths for the eyes) and a tiny dolp of apricot preserves (for the nose). These were gone in like 2 seconds. Probably because the cheese/cracker ratio was way off making them justttt rightttt. I made these the day before and kept them in an airtight container in the fridge. The cracks got soggy but it was no big deal to change them out. So you can make the mice the day before but be sure to add the cracks the day of. Cracks Cracks Cracks.


My brother's girlfriend is a cookie MASTER and I was so excited she was in town to make these for Pres Pres. They were a huge hit! So yummy and basically the cutest thing there (besides Pres Pres). If you're in the Memphis/Starkville area and want her contact info hit me up and I'll be happy to share!


IDK what I was doing with these. I was originally using a "2" cookie cutter to make each rice krispie treat a "2" but that clearly isn't what happened because that was a huge fail. Not sure how people accomplish that but I ended up just making these round shapes and dipping them in candy coating dyed pink then adding gold sprankles. The white candy coating is in the baking aisle at Kroger for $3. It's so easy to use! I just molded the big "2," put a dowel in it then doused it in chocolate so it wouldn't fall apart. It was basically a hot mess but it is what it is.


Chex mix in a cute cat bowl from TJ Maxx and fruit with the yummiest fruit dip dyed purple. It's just a 10 oz container of marshmallow creme, 8 oz of cream cheese (room temp) and 1 cup of powdered sugar. How can you go wrong with that combo? I just dumped it in my kitchen aid mixer with a little food coloring and that was that was cat was hat was bat...sorry. Been reading too much Dr Seuss. IF I HAVE TO READ HOP ON POP ONE MORE TIME I MIGHT EXPLODE! Basically have the whole book memorized. FISH IN A TREE? HOW COULD THAT BE? I digress.


This yummy spinach, artichoke, parmesean dip from Costco is SO GOOD ($10 for a huge tub) along with pita chips (same brand is sold at Costco and Kroger). A huge bag of the chips at Costco is $7 and a small bag at Kroger is $2.50. We went big and haven't looked back. I got the cheese slice sampler at Costco for around $10 as well.


For the drinks I had Coke and Diet Coke, coffee punch (courtesy of my grandma who is a Katie-proclaimed coffee punch master), sweet tea (from a gallon because ain't nobody got time for homemade), cucumber water and MILK!

This is my husband Matt who insisted on being in this pic. Now you know I'm not the only weirdo who lives here. JK MATT I LOVE YOU.

I was sure to infuse the cucumbers in the water overnight to give it a stronger flavor. So crisp and refreshing. Although it was gone before I ever got any so I just made that up. RIP. 


I was so excited about this milk! I got these glass jars at Michaels when they were on sale legit 5 months ago for $12 TOTAL! I was proud. My time has finally come. I got pink Pillsbury icing and dipped the rims in then in gold glitter. I filled them with milk using a funnel and added cute paper straws (leftover from Presley's gender reveal party) and it was the perfect addition to all of the sweets we had. But lets be real..they were cute and that's really all I cared about.




I got the pretty flowers from Kroger. They matched perfectly and I'm obsessed with tulips and hydrangeas so the Lord provides.

Pres had so much fun and we're so thankful to have so many wonderful people in our lives who are so excited to get together and celebrate Presley's life. She is our biggest blessing and we adore her. Happy 2, sweet girl. Here are some fun people pics!



Maybe my fav pic from the day. LOL.









I hope you enjoyed! CATcha next time!