Monday, February 27, 2012

Four Years of Birthdays - a look back

I thought it would be cool to go back through the past four years to see how my party style is evolving. I am a catering manager by trade and I love cooking and entertaining, so people expect a good party. I have received some good feedback about the last birthday party. Someone even said it was like a wedding :)

For A's first birthday party we had an Elmo theme. Not sure why...maybe it just seemed very one year old friendly. I made fondant from scratch and I learned how to frost cupcakes. We had tons of people and tons of food since it was a celebration for both my husband and daughter. I was only working part time at the time so I had lots more time to bake and cook.




I can't believe how little she was!
First Cupcake Ever!


I think somewhere between her first and second birthday I made cupcakes for my friend's baby shower. She had a rubber ducky theme and it was smack in the middle of summer. I made fondant rubber duckies and they were cute and tasty. Unfortunately, it was a homemade butter cream disaster. The frosting melted and it started to slide off of the cupcakes :( 





We had her second birthday party at Pump It Up and she picked a Kai Lan theme. It was her favorite cartoon. I was back to working full time again and I am not sure what possessed me to make Kai Lan, Hoho and Mr Sun Cupcakes. I was running so late! My brother, the artist, had to bail me out. This year I learned how to follow directions  on the iron on and it turned out better.
I think I am through with DIY character cupcakes. I was going to make the kids Kai Lan favor bags with bags leftover from party #1 but as it turned out they were not cloth. I tried to put an iron on transfer on them and they melted. I used take out boxes instead and they worked out much better.






The Third Birthday party took place at  an  Interpretive Center and we had a Finding Nemo theme. I gave up on the funky cupcakes and  got into paper crafting. I just bought my Cricut Expression and I put together a bunch of characters. Again, my brother came to the rescue.



My brother with my monkey.
This year we went to the other nature center in Hayward. I started preparing for this party back in December.  My brother still kind of helped with this event. I made him cut out all of the letters for the birthday banner and stick labels on water bottles. Unlike the one from last year, I only had 30 minutes to set up for the party. Talk about stressful, since I had no idea what to do about my backdrop or banners and some guests came early (I put them to work ). Everything turned out great and you can read about it here and here.

 Not sure what we are going to do next year. My husband mentioned Pump It Up so I can't go more over the top. We will see!

Sweet Peas and Seashells: S&S Giveaway- You call it, you got it!

Sweet Peas and Seashells: S&S Giveaway- You call it, you got it!: The S&S giveaway is officially here, in celebration of the 2 year mark of my little Etsy shop, I'm offering up any item in my shop your litt...

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Kara's Party Ideas | Kids Birthday Party Themes: $100 Bloom Designs Giveaway!

Kara's Party Ideas | Kids Birthday Party Themes: $100 Bloom Designs Giveaway!: ...

Sweet Dinosaur Party : Part Two

It was lots of fun planning this party, even though it was a lot of hard work. I started working on it in December. I made dinosaur crayons in January and I won 2 huge giveaways in early February. Both had amazing sponsors and I used their services to help make the party a success. The first giveaway was from Cakes and Kids  (Thanks Julie!) and I used the credit to her shop to buy a cupcake kit and the Mid Size Bitty Bags. Also, from her giveaway, I won a dozen marshmallow pops from Sassy Soirees.







The other HUGE giveaway I won was from Double the Fun Parties. Thank you Jennifer! It couldn't have come at at better time! 3 weeks before the big day. At that point I was wondering how I was going to get everything done by myself with working 50 hours a week, cooking dinner from scratch almost every night, and trying to hang out with my family. I am also a pretty big fan of sleep and I was hoping that I wouldn't have to lose too much. I decided to call upon the services of two of the sponsors to see if they could have something for me in such short notice.

First,  I emailed the fabulous Faith of Faith's Cookies and I ordered a dozen yummy butterscotch chip and delicious chocolate chip. She had them sent quickly, carefully packaged and tied with the party colors.

The next amazing sponsor is Kima of Kima's Konfections. I won a $30 credit to her shop and at first I was sad that I didn't see dinosaurs. I emailed her that I was looking for dinosaurs and she said she would be able to do them and asked for the party colors. I was so happy and even happier when they arrived! I wasn't going to have to cut more dinosaurs out with my cricut cake or learn how to sculpt dinosaurs.
Check these beauties out:



Another cool giveaway that I won was a gift certificate from Tea Party Designs. I got a custom dinosaur birthday t-shirt transfer and a banner. Of course, they were in purple and green.

She got to pick out one of the animals from her presentations.

Birthday Silliness



I don't think I have ever put so much effort in a little kid's party before but it was lots of fun and I really learned a lot. I believe that over time the parties will get better and more refine. One of my friends remarked that if I am doing this when A is four, one can only imagine what I am going to do for her wedding.  I am looking forward to my next party.

Thanks again to everyone who contributed and thank you for stopping by to visit.

A Sweet Dinosaur Birthday Party: Part One

We just celebrated A's fourth birthday on Sunday. She really, really wanted a dinosaur party. I mean the girl likes Star Wars, Harry Potter and Alice in Wonderland. I kept asking her weekly for the past 3 months...."what do you want for your party?" The answer always came back "DINOSAURS!" What is a mom to do, right? You all know that I love giveaways and I tend to win a lot because I enter tons. One of the first big giveaways I won was over at Mom Endeavors for her One Year Blogiversary back in September. She had lots of great sponsors, one of which was Sweet Rose Studio. I won a mini custom printables from her and she was nice enough to wait until I had an event to use them for. When I realized that Aurora wanted a dinosaur party, and was serious about it, I searched high and low for the right printables. The problem was all the dinosaur parties were for boys. BOOOO!!! Then Katie came to the rescue. She sent me a few samples of cute dinosaurs and asked for what colors Aurora  liked. She picked purple and green. She did an amazing job and I even ordered custom matching invitations from her afterwards. Katie is so talented! So, with all this purple and green dinosaurs I decided to put together my first dessert table. I think I have been reading too many party planning blogs! It is pretty basic and not to shabby for a first try. I just want to show all the amazing people that I won giveaways from what I did with their wonderful things.









I made the cake pops with my cake pop faker thing. I don't like real cake pops so these were perfect.

The thank you tags were also from Sweet Rose Studio, and I used twine from The Twinery  in Lilac and Peapod to wrap the favor bags and string up the banners.













Another giveaway that I won a few months ago was from the fabulous Laura of Eye Candy Event Details. She was having a celebration, too with lots of awesome vendors. One of the vendors was The Marshmallow Studio. OMG! It was LOVE at first site. I LOVE marshmallows! It is amazing edible art. This was back in the summer, so I kindly asked them if I could hold on to the gift certificate. When it came closer to the party I shot them an email and we worked on the dinosaur design. I think my guests were so impressed that they asked for permission to take them.

Aren't they the cutest things ever?! They were yummy, too!

I have to run off to work now, but I will be back later with more pictures of stuff from more amazing vendors!

Link Party 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

MARTHA STEWART PRIZE PACKAGE GIVEAWAY!!

It is time for another MG Party Impressions Giveaway!
This month they are giving a way a Martha Stewart Party Supply Package.

MARTHA STEWART PRIZE PACKAGE GIVEAWAY!!


Go and enter and tell them Donna Sent you!!!