Birthday Party Fun ~ Adventure Time Style!

For Nicholas’ recent 7th birthday party, he chose an Adventure Time theme. We love Adventure Time in our home…and it’s possible that we watch it even if the boys aren’t home. For the first time, we had a birthday party someplace other than a relative’s home, so I knew there wouldn’t be too much in the way of party decorations. But, I wanted to have something that was Adventure Time, so I did a quick birthday party invitation featuring Finn and a goody bag featuring Jake.

Thankfully, Finn and Jake are easy characters to draw!

Finn The Human Invitations
I used pre-made cards and envelopes from Hobby Lobby. I try to keep these cards around because they are so versatile, and for $6.00 for 50 of them, they are inexpensive too. I kept it simple, drawing Finn with a black Sharpie and coloring him in with Crayola colors. I hand printed the lettering on the outside and inside. I love simple!


Finn The Human wants to party with you!
















Jake The Dog Goody Bags
I wanted the goody bags to look a little like Jake when they were filled, so I found some goldenrod-colored bags at Party City. Again, keeping it simple, I drew Jake’s face with Sharpie and colored him with markers. Then I made color copies, cut them out, and used double-sided tape to stick Jake’s face to the bags. The kids thought they were pretty cute, so I was happy! Since so much candy is involved in the cartoon, I had gummy bears, bubble gum and Hershey’s Kisses to fill the goody bags.

Jake The Dog full of goodies!










We have a very talented baker and decorator in town and she made her first-ever Adventure Time cake for the party. As always, her cake was super cute and really delicious!

Adventure Time in cake form!

I would love to hear your take on an Adventure Time party!


Linking to Tip Junkie’s “Tip Me Tuesday”! Go check out the awesome ideas you’ll find there!

all crafts Homemade Projects ~ Add Yours! {7 17}


Birthday Party Fun: Dr. Seuss Style!

Just like every post when I talk about my sons’ ages, I want to start it saying, “I can’t believe they are [insert age here] already!” I can’t believe Tobin is two already! I feel better now. Let’s talk about his birthday party! You may remember from last year that Tobin shares a birthday with Dr. Seuss and Texas. With all the Lorax fun happening right now and our general love of Dr. Seuss, we decided to go with the good Dr. for theme inspiration this year.

I did some searching for Dr. Seuss-themed parties and came up with some great examples (which I quickly pinned). As with all the celebrations we have, I try to stick to the theme mostly in solid colors and some accents. I don’t like to have everything too matchy and I don’t like to spend money on all the theme plates, cups, etc. That stuff can get pricey (I’m talking to you  Party City). This year I used Dr. Seuss’ robin’s egg blue and red (with some orange and other primaries thrown in for good measure). I also used red and white stripes when I could.

My favorite place to find cool Dr. Seuss stuff is the Official Dr. Seuss Website. I compared prices on the official site with ones from Oriental Trading and other go-to party sites and they were similar (and in a few cases, lower). I did get a couple of the items from Oriental Trading, but the majority of the theme stuff is from the Dr. Seuss site. The beauty of sticking with so many solid colors (or the stripes in this case) is that you can reuse or buy from local stores.

Enough background, here are some of my favorite details from Tobin’s Second Birthday Party!

Tables, colors & balloons. Except for the light blue table covers and the red and white striped skirts, all the table covers, plastic ware, cups, plates and napkins were red ones from Nicholas’ party last summer. I got too many then, but didn’t have to buy those things this time, so I call it a win! I got four Green Eggs & Ham mylar balloons for dotting around the rooms.


















The banner. I really like this year’s banner. The supplies were simple: letters from the Dr. Seuss site (they are meant for school bulletin boards), blue card stock from Hobby Lobby, white circles cut from copy paper, black ink for the edges, double-sided tape for adhering all the layers, red acrylic paint for the plain wooden dowel rods, florist foam for holding the dowel rods in place, cord left over from Tobin’s party last year, and purple Easter grass. I cut out the blue squares, rounded the corners, inked the edges of the white circles, and did all the sticking in about 10 minutes. After I adhered the letters, I traced them with a fine-point black Sharpie for some extra emphasis. I punched holes and threaded with the cord and the banner part was done. The whole project, including painting the dowel rods, took about 30 minutes. I had the pots from last year’s party, so with all the stuff I bought, the banner set up might have cost $5.00.








The Cat’s marshmallow hats. I found them on Babble first and really love how they turned out. They were simple to make and were a great addition to the decorations.








The food. Because I am trying to simplify my world and not stress so much about every detail, I decided to order the food. Nothing crazy, sandwiches (PB&J for the kids), a veggie tray, a fruit tray, chips, goldfish (One Fish, Two Fish, etc.), and drinks. The one item I had to make after seeing it on so many other sites was Green Eggs (regular deviled eggs with a few drops of bright green food coloring).








The cake. Originally, the cake was going to be a top hat with red and white stripes, but the South Texas heat and humidity made it impossible. The fantastic Jennifer of Sweet Thangs by Dragon made a super tasty, really cute cake. Next year, we’ll defy gravity and humidity!








Picture time! My awesome colleague, Linda, drew the Lorax for us and I added details with acrylic paint and orange felt. I got the big Cat In The Hat and Thing hair from the Dr. Seuss site. I had planned for the kids to play pin-the-whiskers-on-the-Lorax and to get a picture of all of them together wearing their Thing hair on next to the Cat and the Lorax. That didn’t happen because they stayed in the jump house outside almost the entire time. I’m good with that too. I also love that we’re giving the cat, the Lorax and the leftover Thing hair to T’s daycare for the library section of his classroom.













Goodie bags. The bags themselves are recycled bags with Dr. Seuss characters on the front and a quote from the corresponding story on the back. These are sturdy bags, and I felt like the bags themselves were really the goodies for the kids. There was also a Lorax bag that didn’t make the picture somehow. The set came with three per design and the kids had fun choosing which character they took home.








Goodie bag insides. I did want the bags to have something in them since the younger kids at least would be looking for something inside! I included a blank white bookmark with red and white striped ribbon on top; Dr. Seuss stickers to decorate the bookmarks (or whatever); a couple of Dr. Seuss temporary tattoos; and a cute sucker. I was also excited to be able to add some of the fun Lorax goodies that the wonderful rep at BlissDom shared with me.








Goodie bag tags. I used the same red and white striped ribbon for the tags that I used for the bookmark. I also used the same blue card stock for the background paper as I used for the banner. I cut and rounded the corners of the tags like I did for the banner, stamped a white circle with my favorite “Thank You” stamp, adhered and done!








We had such a fun time with Dr. Seuss and our friends again this year. What was your favorite detail?

Tip Junkie handmade projects






Birthday Party Fun ~ Super Mario Style!

For two years Nicholas has wanted a Super Mario Birthday Party. I didn’t get my act together it time for last year so Sponge Bob stepped in, but this year N got his Mario. As I tend to do for the boys’ birthdays, I stuck with solid-colored party supplies with a few of the theme touches to decorate. It seems to be so much less expensive that way (and the kids are still happy). William was so much help with making the decorations (especially the Question Boxes). Even when the man thinks I’m crazy with these birthday parties, he just sort of shakes his head and gives me whatever help I need. That’s a good Daddy and husband right there!

Thanks to my wonderful friend, Heather, who captured these images of all of our kids having fun and helping my big boy celebrate. So here are some of the highlights from the Super Mario Party!

Decorations & Food

Question Boxes! They looked better before the wind tangled the mushrooms and stars together, but I still liked how they looked.

1 Up Marshmallows! I got this idea from Paisley Petal Events, and she was sweet enough to give me tips. The kids all loved them and I loved how they looked.


Power Up Punch (aka, lemon-lime Kool Aid). I used the figures and toys that Nicholas already had to add to the decorations. I thought Luigi was perfect here!


I had planned to make a Wii remote cake, but N wanted a round cake with his toys on it. The toys turned out to be too heavy, but he was happy with the cool candles.

Thanks to my crafty friends Rachel and Pam, I made these cool tie-dye cupcakes, with star sprinkles of course!


We kept the rest of the food simple with fruit, veggies and pizza. Water and lemon aid rounded out the drink selection. With lots and lots of ice on a very hot day.

The entertainment at an outside party, in June, in South Texas better include water! We borrowed my cousin’s inflatable water slide, we broke out the sprinkler and we got a kiddie pool (which only the big kids used!). And of course a big ol’ Super Mario pinata!


And I will leave you with a Pop Rock-covered smile

I would love to see your favorite party decorations! I need to start thinking about next year!

My Birthday-Easter Combo

We had such a great weekend! The great thing about my birthday falling on Easter is that I’m pretty much guaranteed that my whole family will be there to celebrate. So, here’s the recap of my wonderful Easter birthday. It started with three cute boys (one grown, two still growing) wishing me a Happy Easter while tackling me in bed (including a very slobbery kiss from the littlest one). Then Nicholas enjoyed digging through his Easter basket and helping Tobin with his basket. The University of Texas-themed chocolate bunnies were a hit (because they were chocolate as neither boy cared at all what was on the package). Then I got my gift from William and the boys, a sweet onsie charm for my charm bracelet (to mark T’s birth…I have a rocking-horse for N’s birth).

Eventually we headed to Grandma’s where the rest of our day went like this…

Chocolate Bunny Easter shirts FTW! From my talented friends at 2 Mamas Tees.










Cascarones! I just got the last of the confetti out of my hair tonight. I think.










Smashing Innocent Rabbits for their sweet insides! Our rabbit was lined with Spanish-language newspaper. My friend got a bigger pinata from the same stand. Hers was lined with Spanish-language nudey girl pictures. True story.









The Mighty Egg Hunter! One of them at least.








My blessings. True story.








Sometimes you need help blowing out the candles (and keeping an eye on the ceiling, apparently).









It was the perfect Birthday-Easter combo. What was your favorite part of the Easter holidays this year?


Birthday Party Fun!

We had a kids-running-around-crazy, box-robot-decoration, way-too-many-cupcakes, left-the-juice boxes-for-the-kids-in-William’s-car kind of party for T’s first birthday. It was so much fun and I’m so glad so many of our friends and family got to be there. I got some great ideas for the party from my talented friend, Domenica, and some other great ideas from etsy. If you are in no way interested in the birthday party recap, feel free to leave with no guilt.

It started with my seeing photos of Domenica’s little guy’s birthday party, specifically the robot they built him! So cute! Since T is obviously not into any characters right now, I showed N Domenica’s pictures and asked if he thought T would like the robots and off we went! N assured me, “Tobin will love it! He really loves robots, I can tell.”

Luckily, William’s parents have a big house that is open to us (we could have fit all of 3 people in our apartment). Also, luckily, I knew that my amazing friends Heather and Rachel would have their trusty cameras there and I wouldn’t have to worry about capturing the moments.

So, here’s what we did!

I got a super-cute onsie with a robot for T to wear for the big day. The robot’s belly says, “I’m One!” on it. Perfect for a party outfit.

We built a robot who guarded the goody bags. The robot is made of boxes, dryer venting, scrapbook paper, and silver paint. The goody bags included robot-shaped foam beads to craft with, Sixlets candy in shades of silver and black (I called them “ball bearings”) and some miscellaneous stuff.

We made a birthday banner using the cute graphics I got from etsy, my trusty scrapbook paper (Paper Studio from Hobby Lobby), two dowel rods painted silver, and two pretty glass containers filled with sand.

We made fun cupcake picks from my etsy purchase and stars I punched.

The extra graphics I didn’t use for the cupcakes went on a little banner for around T’s high chair tray.

I intended to make a banner with T’s pictures (from birth to 11 months), but time got away from me, so the photos went into a small scrapbook. What? You don’t have spare scrapbook albums around your home? Oh.

Food was simple, just snacky stuff, hot dogs and chips. The cupcakes were purchased from H-E-B with butter cream icing I made. I also made this incredible-tasting strawberry butter cream that completely separated and is still in a bowl in our refrigerator. I will be perfecting that recipe because it tasted *so* good. We had some fun with white-chocolate dipped marshmallows and Rice Krispy treats.

T’s smash cake was a robot head. I was going to make a complete robot, but am glad William convinced me to go the easy route. T cracked us up with his dainty eating of the icing, but once he figured out that he could smash, that poor cake was a goner. I don’t think he actually ate any of the cake at all.

The best part of the party was being surrounded by friends and family who were there to celebrate this incredible little boy. We are so blessed to have people who love us so much. And I am blessed to have William who not only doesn’t make me feel crazy for wanting to do so much for our baby’s birthday, but also helped me set up everything and built the robot.

I can’t wait for N’s birthday this summer!

What have some of your favorite party decorations been? Do you like to buy party stuff, or do you like to make it?

Thanks to my awesome (and talented) friends, Heather and Rachel Matthews for their photography skills. Here are some photos of the fun!