Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Camping Party 2013

Probably the highlight of my party planning was planning a camping themed party for my daughters 11th birthday.  The research for this party and the making of the decor started early, 
but it was well worth it!!
This was one of my first attempts at making tissue paper tassels, a lot of work, but definitely worth it, as they looked great.  The I found the directions from this site Tissue Tassel Tutorial, and I made some small modifications.  I twisted the tassels, then stapled them, then strung them on some twine. 
I covered our main bathroom door with some butcher paper, and used black paint to give it a wood effect. I also used the butcher paper to cover our backyard fence and to make some 
authentic signage on our front porch.  
I am not an artist by any means, but the crude drawings added to the effect, I think.

One of the other highlights was the campfire cupcakes.  These too were a lot of work but they turned out fantastic!!.. I got the original idea from this blog and again, made some of my own adaptations.  I used red, yellow and orange lifesavers, crushed them, then laid them on a cookie sheet.  I used waxed paper, do not do this, as the paper stuck to the candy and it was very difficult to peal off, just spray the cookie sheet with non stick spray for better results.

I made two different colors of icing, green and orange, and I used chocolate covered raisins for the rocks and pretzel sticks for the wood.  The kids and adults just love this one.

 We had plenty of games at the party, but the favorite game was the bingo scavenger hunt.  the kids spent a whole hour trying to fill up their cards!!  I also made some little thank you s'mores to give the kids when they went home.  I am not a graphic artist, and I don't know adobe or in design, I do all of my work on a cheezy print master program.  It does the trick for me!!

 We had some sun shade tents, so I placed them out in our backyard, and in our front yard, and I made a fake fireplace with wood and tissue paper.  I also put several of our stuffed bears in them, and made a do not feed the bear sign.  All of this really added to the decor.
 Inside, I used tin take out containers for plates, and canning jars covered with burlap for glasses.
 Here are some more props that I found and placed them in the yard
Some more inside decor.  I found a great website for camping signs, and I downloaded a bunch.  You can find the site HERE

By far, the kids enjoyed the outdoor movie the most!!  We watched open season with popcorn and an outdoor movie theatre!!

Thanks for checking out this weeks Shenanigans!!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

2012 Summer Vacation Recipies

Last summer while we were on vacation, I decided to try a few new recipies, and they actually turned out GREAT, so I thought I would share them.

Bacon Beer Butt Chicken

Grilled Pineapple Chicken (grilled in the pineapple)

S'more Pizza!!

Dinner Party

Wow, I cannot believe it has been over a year since my last post!!  
I have been super busy and I have lots to get caught up on!!

Well, to ease myself back into posting, I thought I would backtrack to a fabulous dinner party that we held back in August of 2012 with our good friends Nicole and Larry.  We always have such a great time when we get together, and of course there is good food and good company!

I started the evening off with watermelon martini's!!  They were a big hit.  My recipe is very simple, blend watermelon with vodka and ice.. and voila.. Watermelon Martini's!!

For the Salad I chose a grilled peach with blue cheese and mixed greens, it was just delish!!

 I also wanted to try my hand at a spinach and cheese foccacia bread, it was so filling, 
almost a meal in itself!!

For the main dish, we had crab and cream cheese stuffed chicken with grilled corn

And for dessert, we marinated pineapple and grilled it and served it with vanilla ice cream!!  I had a heck of a time figuring out how to cut a pineapple, so I thought I would post the process for those of you who would like to give it a try.

Till next time, and I promise this time it won't be a year until my next post!!!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Jungle Sarari Birthday Party

Hello Everyone;

It has been awhile since my last post, and that is because I have been up to my eyeballs in Alligators (literally).  I have been hard at work planning my daughters 10th Birthday party.  This year, she decided that she wanted a jungle animal / safari theme.. so I of course had to oblige!!  I began scouring the internet for ideas for decor and I as always, I was amazed at the creative people out there throwing parties!!  So, I set right to work on the preparations!!  The first thing was to create the invitation.  I concluded I wanted a passport theme and used word to create the below invitation.  The passport stamps and the photo of my daughter were what made the invitation complete.  

Jungle Passport Invitation
 Once the invitation was complete, then I set to work on the planning for the house decor.  I wanted everything to look like a jungle.. so lots of green yellow and brown streamers were in order.  I found a unique way to make fringed streamers from Oh Happy Day Blog and I used the same technique for my fringed streamers below.

Fringed Streamers
They turned out fantastic and made the room look like you were stepping into an African Safari deep in the jungle!!  I also wanted to decorate the front step and entry way to our home.  Again, this really gave the "Jungle" like feel to it right from the moment you saw our place.

Front Entry Way Decor
I made the banner on my computer in word, and I also made some safari signage.  It is amazing what you can do with your computer and a little imagination.  I had some palm tree's from a Hawaiian birthday that I threw for my daughters 6th birthday, so I re-used them for this event.  I also found a ton of animal pictures on the web that I cut and printed off and placed them all around the house.

The food was next on my list of planning.  I tried to think of unique things that went with animals, and animal snacks and came up with cute little signs with zebra stripes that added to the final touch for the food.  We had Roaring Sweets, Lion's Lunch, Hungry Hippo Fruit, Peacock Pops, Jungle Juice, Elephant Treats and of course Safari Snacks!!

Jungle Food

It was a hot day, and I was going to be sending the kids outside for a scavenger hunt, so I knew that they would need quite a bit of water.  I found some zebra striped duct tape at Home Depot and it worked like a charm adding that jungle touch to the water bottles that I served.

Cupcakes were going to be the dessert of choice, as I am not great at icing a whole cake, so I attempted to make jungle cupcakes.  I made little toothpick signs out of paper and my trusty computer and managed to find little sugar jungle animal heads to top them off.  They turned out great and the kids loved them.

Safari Cupcakes

There were many other  decor ideas that I cam across that added to our party.The table was a highlight of the decorations and a sneak peak of the table decor is below.  Each party goer had their own little adventurer place card, and I decorated the table with burlap and greenery.

Table Decor
And for the grand finale of this party.. a Scavenger hunt!!  I divided up the party into two teams and had clues and tasks for them to complete all around our back yard and our townhouse complex common area.  Each team had to find 3 animals from the clues about them.  The animals were also hidden.  The Monkey was in a tree, the Rhino was in a mud bath, and the elephant was in a neighbors water fountain keeping cool.

Scavenger Hunt


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Teacher Appreciation Gift - Wordle

It is that time of year again when we begin to shout for joy that school is almost over!!  No more pencils, no more books.. now, what to give for that special teacher that has worked so diligently with your child all year.. a word cloud.  What is a word cloud you ask?  Well, I stumbled onto Wordle which is a great free online program that let's you make word clouds.  So I put together a word cloud with my teachers name, and all of the wonderful qualities that she possesses.  I used my daughters help to assist me with coming up with the words that describe her teacher, plunked them into the wordle create dashboard and.. voila!!
  A few tips when entering the words into Wordle. In order for there to be a space between two words, use the ~ symbol. So for "I like her hair" I had to enter "I~like~her~hair". If you enter a space, the words will appear separately.  Every time a word appears/is entered, the word get larger in the cloud. In other words, the larger the word, the more times it appears in your word file. So I entered the teacher's name the most, followed by the school name next. 
  I copy and pasted all the words  into the 'create' page on the Wordle site and selected 'go'. Wordle creates a custom word cloud with a random design. The best part is, you can customize almost every aspect of design, including the background, fonts, directions the words appear, etc. The possibilities are endless.

 Wordle Create Dashboard


Wordle Finished Product
                            I color printed the file on photo paper and framed it in an 8x10 frame.

                      I love that it is personal to the teacher and gives her an amazing perspective
                                                        of what my child thinks about her.

Hope you enjoyed today's Shenanigan!!