April Fool's Day Fun

Tomorrow is April Fool's Day! Have a little fun with your family...

April Fool's KFC chicken
A slightly healthier version of KFC with Kitchen Fun With My Three Sons.

April Fool's condiment prank
Fake them out with a condiment prank from All For The Boys.

April Fool's TomKat Studio ice cream
I love that most of the treats from this darling party featured at TomKat Studio aren't really what they are! Meringues disguise as soft-serve ice-cream and chocolate candy dressed up as fudgesicles? Yes, please!

April Fool's Jell-O Eggs
Make a few soft-boiled eggs for breakfast...I love this fun tutorial from Oh Happy Day!

April Fool's food collage
Check out last year's (Not) Food For Thought for more inspiration!

Scholastic Book Fair AKA Where I've Been Lately

I'm bored.  Between being a mom, student, blogger and party planner, I'm Secretary of my boys' PTSA and chair a few events.  So I figured, eh, that's not enough, why not become a Scholastic Book Fair chairperson.

So twice a year, for an intense week, armed with a team of volunteers to help set up lots of books and displays, I show up early to get the registers going, make sure the morning shift is set, open the doors to tons of children with bags of change to buy $15 books, leave for a bit, come back for the afternoon shift change, leave for a bit, come back for the rush of after-school kids with bags of change to buy $15 books, close up, count tons of money, leave for evening, rinse, repeat the next day.

Throw in an evening event for another 2 hours, then finally close up, repack everything and settle our account.  Not to mention meeting with students for a few weeks creating posters, decorating, advertising, making flyers, prepping the library, etc. etc. etc.

This would explain my sporadic posting, and oh yeah, dealing with full on-allergies (gotta love those cherry blossoms) which developed into something that knocked me the past weekend, and pretty much all week. I still sound like Big Ang from Mob Wives.
Scholastic Book Fair Is Out Of This World space window
Do you want to see what I've been up to?  Here are a few highlights from last fall's Book Fair, it was awesome with a space theme, an alien made with pumpkins, a space ship beaming up books...

5th grade students created the wall job was the front case display window.

Scholastic Book Fair One For Books penny challange

Scholastic Book Fair One For Books Donut Party

Scholastic's One For Books program gets books in the hands of children that need them. I challenged the students to fill up our buckets with spare change, the winning grade would get a party.  We raised almost $300 that we purchased books for the Marine Corps Toys For Tots.  The winning 5th graders students enjoyed a doughnut party...
Scholastic Book Fair One For Books Marine Corps officer
...and I invited our local Marine Corps recruiter to our school assembly to accept the books on our behalf.  Man, how I love their dress blues...

Scholastic Book Fair Book Fair Luau volcano
This spring's Fair, Book Fair Luau. In my manic state putting the window together, and later, drug-befuddled state taking it down, I neglected to take pictures of the front case.  It involved a piñata hula girl, tons of tissue flowers and surfboards....yes, I know.  But I did get the volcano wall mural the students created.  I gave them the idea and they ran with it...

Scholastic Book Fair Book Fair Luau totems
I also discovered a great idea called Name Tiki Craft from The Party Animal and had the students create a few for the opposite wall. 
Scholastic Book Fair 3

Scholastic Book Fair 2

Scholastic Book Fair
Exhausting but totally worth it! We earn books for our school and classroom libraries and our students get excited about reading.  

If there is a school-aged child in your life, chances are, their school holds a Scholastic Book Fair. Please support their endeavors...many schools depend solely on the credit earned to maintain their libraries.

Tuesday Tip - Spring Fling GNO + Party Straws

spring fling girls' night out
Are you looking for a way to get your gal pals together and welcome in spring? I'm thrilled to have a guest post on GigMasters for fabulous ways to pamper yourself and get those toesies ready for a Spring Fling GNO!

And speaking of fun accents, I've been coming across clever ideas lately to making paper straws even cuter...

paper straw with tissue fringe
Jenny of Hank + Hunt is sassing them up with tissue fringe...check out her full tutorial.

paper straw with cupcake liner
Layer Cake Shop pairs them with cupcake liners, check out their fun how-to.

Adding hot accents is always a winner...Papermash's free download would be perfect for Mother's Day beverages.

paper straw with felt heart
The Knotty Bride shows us how to make adorable felt heart toppers...change the shape to fit your theme, from stars to clouds, the sky's the limit!

paper straw with cloud paper punch
But don't let felt intimidate you...a simple paper punch will work just as fabulously! I added a cloud punch  for our Mario Party straws.

Fiesta Friday/Real Party - Robot Valentine Playdate

It's a little late, but better than never! The little one was really sick, so we had to postpone our Robot Valentine Playdate. In fact, the boy pointed out that St. Patrick's Day was the next day...but as my mom would say 'by hook or by crook' we were having this party.  The kids played hard, then sat down to a few special treats.

robot Valentine Playdate party styrofoam gears

I made the gears by cutting Styrofoam disks and and spray painting them...

robot Valentine Playdate party styrofoam gears 2

Tuesday Tutorial - Basketball Court Cookies

March Madness basketball court cookies
Are you having a sports-themed party or just an avid basketball fan? Check out how to make my easy-peasy Basketball Court cookies on Today's Mama...necessity was definitely the mother of invention.

Happy Pi(e) Day!

Today is March 14 (3.14) also known around the world as Pi Day; no, not pie, 3.1415926535....Π. It is the holy high day for us math nerds; back in college every year there was a Pi Contest to see who could memorize the most digits of Pi. First place received $314.15, second place, $31.41 and third place...wait for it...a pie, and bragging rights. Yeah, I know.

Of course, if you want to be technical, it should be called Pi Approximation Day, since it's an irrational number which means it never terminates or repeats itself. Currently, the verified world holder for memorized digits of Pi is over 67,000, but computers have calculated Pi to over 1 trillion digits past the decimal. Sorry...I drifted...

So of course in the spirit of Pi, today it's all pie, all the time! Watch out cupcakes, pies may be the big sweet on the block!
mini pies

First up, my version of Bakerella's famous pie pops minus the powered sugar.  So I guess that makes them...pie bites??

mini pies and box

I used a can of Lucky Leaf's blueberry pie filling and refrigerated pie crust.  You know I can't make anything from scratch. I thought it would be fun to package them in a little box and embellish with a stamp from Michael's.

If you live in the Seattle area, check out some of our pie spots that I featured on my Today's Mama post.

Pi Day Twig & Thistle apple hand pie printable

A fun recipe and free download for from Twig & Thistle.

DIY pie in a jar

Pi Day DIY Pie In A Jar recipe from Green Wedding Shoes.

Pi Day pretty pie flags
Pretty pies with flags from Tara Guérard Soirée.

Pie Day Lamb Shank Pie

Lamb shank pie from What Katie Ate.

How's this for a 1st Birthday from EAD Living.

Do you know what kind of pie you are?  Lucky Leaf has put together an easy formula... I'm definitely a Cherry girl! Check out their Easy As Pie Facebook page for lots of great tips and tricks for making the perfect pie.

Pi Day Lucky Leaf Sweethear Ginger Spice Apple Pie

Speaking of Lucky Leaf, we can't forget my Sweetheart Ginger Spice Apple Pie? Some handmade touches, mostly storebought pieces, all taste.

Disclaimer - I was provided the supplies and ad from Lucky Leaf for review and no compensation was given, real or implied. This review is my own personal opinion.

St. Patrick's Day Rainbow Crafts & Pinspiration

St. Patrick's Day Rainbow crafts
Can you believe St. Patrick's Day is Saturday? It sure crept up fast...check out my Today's Mama post on some great rainbow craft ideas including this amazeballs wall decoration from Creative Juice for her amazeballs party!

Have you been following my St. Patrick's Day Board on Pinterest? It's got lots of great ideas from a Silly Shamrock Swim to great freebies, fun treats and party ideas.  Go forth and follow!  If you need an invite, just ask! I think I have the power to give you one.

Drink Of The Week - St. Patrick's Day Drink Garnish Ideas

St. Patrick's Day rainbow drink rimmer
It doesn't matter what you are drinking, you don't need a lot to take it from "ok" to "oh my!" Case in point, this fabulously clever rainbow rimmer and candy shamrock garnish from Oh My! Creative. Yes, she made the shamrock from candy melts, you know they are #1 in my party book! Hop on over to check out her easy tutorial!

Fiesta Friday - Paleontologist Party Inspiration Board

My oldest nephew just turned 11 and is a serious paleontologist. I offered to put together a Party In A Box since he lives on the other side of the mountains and we aren't able to make his birthday parties.  Plus, I was having a party itch for this theme, it's the one thing my boys weren't in to.  But after they saw what I was doing, the little one wanted one too.

Paper & Cake Dinosaur dig party invite
I'll share some of my favorite parts....first up, getting my hands on Paper & Cake's Dinosaur Dig printables.  Oh, so full of fun, like these party invites, just plug in the info and go!

paleontologist dinosaur party DIY fossil

They'll be making their own fossils and dinosaur snot (AKA my Borax slime recipe). Oh yes, I know, you want to know how I made such a realistic's using Plaster Of Paris.  I used the tutorial from Roots And Wings Co.  and scored on these great dinosaur bones from Michael's to use for impressions.  I also used a few shells and evergreen leaves and voilà!  It's like you went back 250 million years in time.

paleontologist dinosaur party party snacks

Besides their fossils and snot, guests will be taking home bags of freshly excavated dinosaur bones AKA candy pebbles and yogurt covered pretzels. I know, I know...I left no stone unturned...ack, I'll stop now.

A few more fun ideas I sent mama's way...

paleontologist dinosaur party molten lava cakes

Serve molten lava cakes from Wants And Wishes.

paleontologist dinosaur party teeth plates

Make jagged dinosaur teeth similar to these shark teeth from Dollar Store Crafts.  Scatter them around, and hang them up to decorate your party space.

paleontologist dinosaur party names

I love Mini Mocha's idea of giving all the guests dinosaur names.

Elements Of Design In Party Decor - Proportion

Before I launch into today's musings, it's time to announce the winner of my Every 100 Followers Giveaway!!

Entry #101 - Shelley S.

The winner has been contacted and has 24 hours to respond or an alternate will be drawn.  Didn't win?? That's ok, I've got more giveaways up my sleeve....

My elements of design in party decor post generated lots of buzz; I also received several emails for more in-depth ideas about why these ideas 'work'. By no means am I an expert with years of design under my belt.  But as you work on more events, you start getting 'the eye'...something doesn't look right, something's missing...and you'll keep playing around until you get what feels right to you.

Thus, I'm inspired to do a mini series using all eight principals of design (check out the post to see what I'm talking about); so far we've got balanceemphasismovement, repetition, and today is proportion.

Proportion is when all the elements seem to relate well to each other in terms of size...large objects are balanced with small objects, one side may feel 'heavy' because of one large element so the other side has several smaller elements to weigh it evenly.  It can be a scale, a graduation in size from large to small.  There are many ways to represent it...but you know it when you see it.  For example... 

elements of design proportion carnation centerpiece

I don't know why carnations get such a bad rap! Martha Stewart Weddings clustered them together in white vases gives them a beautiful elegance. Notice how although the elements are similar, but by graduating the size of the containers, the centerpieces don't feel too matchy.

Green Eggs & Ham(ish)

Happy birthday, Dr. Seuss! How many of us grew up on his riddles and rhymes and have had the pleasure of introducing the kids in our lives to them? If you haven't heard, The Lorax movie opens today and if you missed my post full of fun parties and crafts to celebrate, go check it out! Plus, it has links to Read Across America events that may be going on in your area.

Green Eggs & Ham candy treat
What better way to celebrate than with his most iconic treat, my version of Green Eggs & Ham.  Of course, you all know my egg candy mold, and the 'ham' is a Hostess Sno-Ball.  Yes, it's a bit of a stretch but do you know how hard it is to find anything that looks like a real ham, besides a real ham?

The adorable topper is a freebie courtesy of those fab ladies of Anders Ruff...did you know they have an entire Dr. Seuss birthday collection?

Green Eggs & Ham snack treat

candy rimmed milk bottle
Do you like the sugar rimmer? I took a tip from Sweet Sensations and dipped the rim in melted candy melts, then dipped into the crystals. Change the colors and it's perfect for any party! Half the fun for my boys will be licking the glass...

Dr. Seuss Pottery Barn Kids collection
And while I'm on a roll, did you know about the Dr. Seuss Pottery Barn Kids collection? My new catalog came in and I can't wait to see it in real life, it's just so much fun...I wish it came in California King size, I so want one for my bed! 
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