Free Smash Cake

This will be a short post as I am getting everything ready for my first day back to work after 10 weeks of maternity leave!  It’s hard to believe the time has gone by so fast, but I am looking forward to getting in the swing of things back at work, and I know Jake will keep a good eye out on Tyler during the school day.  I have kept up with parties during my maternity leave, but I have not done much for my other job as a clinical research coordinator at Duke Medical Center, so I’m sure I’ll need a couple days to regroup and get back to “work normal”.

I came across this picture from Jake’s 1st birthday party over the weekend.  I didn’t know at the time of Jake’s birthday, but have since found out that Harris Teeter provides a free smash cake for your child’s first birthday.  This is such a great deal, especially considering all your child is going to do is destroy it!  You will need to provide them two weeks notice (atleast), and depending on the location (all that I’ve used have been wonderful) they will create a cake for your theme.  If you already have a baker or want to create a masterpiece yourself, atleast use the free cake for a fun family dessert for the child’s first birthday.  Who doesn’t love free cake?!

398894_10100344683872801_1940562025_n

Fun daily bargain site

Fun daily bargain site

If you’re anything like me, you get a ton of emails daily from an assortment of daily deal sites ranging from clothing to kids gear to travel/hotels.  Groop Dealz is by far one of my favorite daily deal sites that reminds me alot of etsy; unique clothing, jewelry, housewares, and most importantly unique party supplies.  I have found great bridesmaid gifts, party favors and party decorations on this site and have been very happy with everything I’ve received.  If you don’t have a party coming up that you need anything for, its also a great place to start your Christmas shopping!  Have fun shopping!

Not a baby shower game fan???

index

Baby showers are some of the cutest and most fun parties to plan; everyone loves a baby! When planning a shower, people normally fall into two categories: yes to baby games or no way do I want games. If you’re of the latter opinion, a really fun alternative to entertain the mommy-to-be is to have a scrapbook shower. For this type of party you will need to buy scrapbooking supplies and lots of stickers, tape and scissors. Each guest will decorate one page of a scrapbook; examples include baby’s first bath, first holiday, first smile, etc. At the end of the party you will present a fully compiled scrapbook to the guest of honor and then all she has to do is fill in the pages with the pictures.

This is a really fun idea for the guests and for the mommy-to-be as she is given a gift that will truly last a lifetime. Creating a baby scrapbook is fun to do even if you play party games as well! When it comes to planning a party, try and think outside the box……that’s where the best ideas come from!

Fire Station Birthday Party

It’s hard to meet a child that does not like fire trucks, so what better of a place to have a party than your local fire station!  Not every station will have the facilities to host a party, so you will need to plan in advance and check around to see where the best option is.  Unlike most birthday event sites, there is no fee to have a party at the fire station, but I highly recommend making a donation to them and it isn’t a bad idea to bring goodies as well!  Another huge perk is that you don’t have to plan many activities for the children; the firemen will usually show the truck, give a tour of the firehouse, show them uniforms, and other odds and ends of their job.

There are alot of different decorations and fun food options you can use for the party, ranging from simple to elaborate depending on how much money you want to spend on the party/event.  For this specific little boy’s birthday party, we incorporated the dalmatian fire dog and the phrase “sound the alarm”.  Splendid Celebrations took care of water bottle labels, cupcake toppers, favor bags and decorations; decoration examples include mason jar centerpieces filled with m&ms and number 4 candles (4th birthday party), party hats, and mostly red colors with accents of primary colors.   The kids had a blast at the party and I was so excited at the opportunity to do this party as it opened my eyes to the awesome-ness of fire station parties!

I can’t wait to plan my next fire station party, and I know I will be using them in the future for my little boys’ birthday parties!  I hope everyone is having a great first day of Fall.  It’s absolutely beautiful here in North Carolina today, and we are headed out to feed the ducks at the Lake after the boys wake up from naptime.  Have a great start to the week everyone!

Set-Up

Fun times with the kids

“Sound the Alarm”

“Flames” Favor Bags

Friday Favorites

The world of blogging is so new to me, and I constantly have ideas running through my head about fun topics to write about; then I go to write about them and can’t remember a thing! I’ve started making a “road map” for myself to keep track of all my ideas and when I will write about them.  I have so many parties and events that I’ve done in the past, so I’m excited to incorporate them over the next couple of months into my site to give you all a good idea of what I’ve done and where I’m going with my business.  I’ve said it before, but I truly appreciate your understanding and patience with my writing skills as I learn more and more every day about how to portray my work/ideas/thoughts in this whole new blogging endeavour.

Today starts my first “Friday Favorites”; every Friday I will talk about things that I have come across over the past week, or maybe something that I’m looking forward to for the weekend.  Sunday is the first day of fall, so I could easily write about all things pumpkin every week for the next three months, but I will do my best to branch out!

While its only September, I am already getting excited for Christmas as I will have two little boys to spoil! My littlest one will only be 5 months old, so he won’t care, but my 2 1/2 year old is really going to have alot of fun this year (too bad he won’t remember all the fun!).  I always go all out for decorating at Christmas, but tend to keep things pretty simple for the fall.  The Williams Sonoma herb wreath is always on my “want” list for the fall, yet I always seem to talk myself out of it and just admire it online.  Instead I try to freeze as many fresh herbs as I can from our garden (the small patch of one we have) and tend to make TONS of pesto with all our leftover basil.  Image

My son’s school this week had Safety Day, where an ambulance and fire truck came out to school for the kids to see and look around in.  Needless to say my son LOVED it and I had such a nice time getting to know our local fireman.  When you ask my son what the fire truck and ambulance do, all he says is “they help people”, which sums it up perfectly.  The firemen said to stop by the station whenever we want as they love visitors; it helps keep them busy and break up monotony when they aren’t out on calls.  And there is nothing cuter than a little kid getting excited about what you do! To tie this in to what I do, I got a call this week asking about venues for children’s birthday parties that did not cost an arm and a leg; caveat being the party is in the winter so it needs to be indoors.  My first thought was a fire station; not every fire station will host a party, but there are definitely several stations in the area that will.  It is free to use their space, but I normally suggest giving a donation to the station and bringing food/sweets for the firemen.  Because it does not cost to have the party there, you can use the money you are saving towards food, decorations and favors.  The firemen will provide all the activities you will need for a party; normally consisting of touring the trucks, trying out the clothes, seeing the station and anything else the guys have around that day.  To me its one of the best places to have a party for kids as you don’t need to worry about having the kids be entertained, which is always a priority to me at parties.  This weekend I will be blogging about a party I did at a fire station for a little boy this past year, and I can’t wait to share my ideas and pictures with you all! I hope that everyone enjoys the upcoming weekend and the beginning of a wonderful fall.  Image

Pinterest

It took me awhile to get on the Pinterest bandwagon, and while its hard to not get completely swept up in all things “Pinterest”, it is a great place to go to find ideas for parties, decorating, recipes and just ideas in general.  I can definitely attest to the fact that my projects do not look like they do in the pictures, nor do my dinner recipes look as perfect, but I’ve found so many great things that I keep going back to find more ideas! It is an especially great site to find ideas for parties and events, and with the convenience factor of saving things to your “boards”, you have the ability to do things in advance and come back at a later time. 

This is one of my favorite pins from today: http://lilluna.com/halloween-cookies-jar-gift/

It’s also a wonderful website that has some great DIY crafts and recipe ideas for the busy mom! Check out my Pinterest site that has everything from breakfast recipes to ideas for baby showers and kids birthday parties. 

Unique Party Invitations

One thing that makes any type of party special is providing people with a unique invitation to your event.  The best way to do this is to personalize it with a name, age, or theme.  My favorite place to find invitations is through Etsy (http://www.etsy.com/).  I have used several different vendors in the past and have had wonderful experiences with everyone; the best thing is that you will receive a file with your invitation and you can then choose to print them out or send them through email.  This is a very easy and inexpensive way to personalize your event. 

These are two of my favorite shops that have great products and wonderful customer service:

http://www.etsy.com/shop/FourLeafPrints

http://www.etsy.com/shop/LollipopPrints