Friday, November 14, 2014

Falling For Baby: A Fall Themed Baby Shower

I recently threw a baby shower for a very sweet family member who is expecting a baby boy later this month. We are so excited and cannot wait to meet him! Fall is the expectant mama's favorite season, so I built the theme of her shower around that. Here are a few photos from the event. See below for resources and 6 detailed steps to help you throw your own DIY fall themed baby shower!

1. "Falling for Baby" Poster
-I made it and had it printed at Staples (24x36 engineer print for around $5).
2. Tissue Paper Poms
-I made them. You can find the tissue paper here. I'd be more than happy to post a separate tutorial if anyone is interested. 
3. Invitations
-Designed by my sister-in-law, Kadie Brown
-Leaf sticker here
-I printed "It's a boy" separately on plain white paper and attached it to the back of the invitation. 
4. Fall Decor
-Pumpkins: The perfect decoration for any fall themed party and a simple, yet excellent way to set the stage! I chose three different sizes from a unique bunch at Trader Joes. I bought 6 total and stacked them three high on each side of the doorway, so they were the first things people saw as they entered my home. 
- Handmade elements: Using handmade elements throughout the house is a great way to personalize the theme! The acorns hanging from the mantle, the ceramic pumpkins with the cute faces, and the fabric pumpkin (and more) were all made by mothers, grandmothers, or aunts from our family. It was a sweet touch and went along perfectly with the theme.
-Scents: Although I love pumpkin EVERYTHING during the fall, I chose a different scent for the shower. Vanilla chai was equal parts warm, spicy, and sweet. I had a few candles burning in every room of the house that I knew guests would enter and it really helped create a cozy atmosphere. I can't seem to find that specific scent online, but here are a few others that could be very complimentary to a fall themed shower: Hot Buttered Rum, Cinnamon Carmel Swirl, Spiced Apple Toddy. One suggestion would be to check with the expectant mother before selecting a scent. A lot of pregnant women are sensitive to smells (I was. Bleh!), so be sure to not select anything that would make your guest of honor uncomfortable.
- Color Scheme: I used earthy tones with bright reds, yellows, and oranges mixed in. Additionally, I used little bits of sparkle wherever I could to brighten up the otherwise muted hues. The orange glitter leaves hanging on the mantle were from the dollar store, but here is a similar option: 3D glitter tree centerpiece.
5. Eats & Treats
- Eats: Chicken salad on croissant was my easy go-to in this case. Everyone seemed to enjoy it and it was a cinch to throw together. I stacked the sandwiches and displayed them on simple wooden trays. 
- Drinks: Here are links to the white tea pitchers, similar chalkboards to the leafs I used to label the teas, and my favorite brand of sweet tea.
- Treats: I somehow managed to forget to snap any pictures of the desserts, but here is a list of fun treats (and a few links) that I had out for guests to indulge in: 
  • Trader Joe's Meringues. Having never tasted these myself, I honestly just bought them because they were pretty. However, these were the most talked about treats at the shower! Light and crunchy on the outside, with marshmallow on the inside.
  • Trader Joe's Cookie Butter Cups: Get your hands on these, and leave out a big bowl of them for your guests. Actually, get your hands on anything that includes cookie butter. It's insanely delicious! I forgot to put out little labels to let everyone know what each treat bowl included. People kept asking what was in the center of the cups, realizing that it was not the peanut butter they expected, but was still delicious! And they loved them so much that there was only ONE left in the bowl by the end of the shower. One.
  • The expectant mother's favorite treat/candy. In this case, I had a dish of fun size milky ways out. Those that were left over were put in a bag for her to take home. Just a little something extra sweet for the mama-to-be!
  • Archer Farm Cupcakes: I almost spent a small fortune on little cakes from a cupcakery. You know, the ones with the fancy whipped icing on top and the yummy filling in the center. However, while making a last minute Target run the night before the shower, a display of the most simple and adorable cupcakes caught my eye. They were the perfect flavors for fall (pumpkin and vanilla bean) AND they looked like they were made in a fancy cupcake shop! The icing was thick and swirled perfectly on the top and they were only a few bucks per container. Also, to my surprise, when guests started eating them, they went on and on about the delicious filling in the center. WIN! So, be sure to check the bakery at Target before shelling out too much for cakes. #targetdoesitagain. 
6. Craft 
- Burlap Wreath (adapted from Classy Clutter).  Here was my thought on this: 
1. I don't enjoy shower games, and neither does the mama I was throwing the shower for. 
2. I wanted to send every guest home with a favor they'd love and use. 
3. The guest list was large, and I wanted to have an activity at the shower that was fun and engaging for every attendant. 
So, the idea for a fall themed craft was born. The beauty of this craft is that it can be adapted for any theme/season, so feel free to personalize it to fit your party! 

I made it easy for guests in the following ways:
- Example Wreathe: I had a wreathe already made so that they could see the final product.
- Craft Kits: Including the burlap they'd need, the wire (already formed), and instructions.
- Fall Decor: I hit up the fall/Halloween sales at a few craft stores and scored an insane amount of items for guests to choose from to add to their wreaths. I scattered it all across the dining room table so that they could see each item, and didn't have to dig for anything.
- Hot Glue Station: I set this up in a separate location, away from the craft kits and fall decor. This helped the traffic run smoothly from start to finish, so that guests weren't on top of each other in one location.
- Lint Rollers: I knew the burlap would be messy, so I provided a few of these for guests to use so they wouldn't leave the shower covered in burlap.
I can also post a separate tutorial for this craft if anyone is interested, just let me know!

So there you have it! I've never done a blog post like this before, so I hope you enjoyed it! Please let me know if you have any questions or are interested in any of the additional tutorials I mentioned. 

Need a few more ideas for a fall themed baby shower or party? Check out my Fall board on Pinterest!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Balloon Festival

We attended the Plano balloon festival this past weekend. The crowd was insane, but the music, balloons, and fireworks were a lot of fun. I love watching Rynna as she experiences things for the first time. She enjoyed watching the balloons light up once the sun went down and kept pointing her tiny finger at them and looking back and forth at Josh and I to make sure we were seeing it all. 

Here are a few grainy phone pics from the event. I forgot my good camera, but I'm glad I captured at least a few on my phone!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

These Days

I seem to share so much more on Instagram these days because it's simply faster and easier to do than blogging. However, in an attempt to not completely neglect this little space, here are some recent photos from my phone. :)

Our little flower child. 

I love that last photo (bottom right)! Here face kills me. She's like, "Uh, seriously mom? You're a weirdo!"

Homemade chicken fajitas! 

I'm going to attempt to make my own ring sling out of a single curtain panel from Ikea. I'll keep you guys posted lol. We'll see how it goes. 

All tuckered out. 

Baby blues and a face with endless amounts of expression. Her signature faces have lovingly been dubbed "crazy" and "stink face." She has them down pat. 

Homemade pizza. OMG. So good! 

I never thought anyone could love him with as much crazy passion as I do. This kid though. She about loses it every time he walks in the room. #goshilovethem

Toes for breakfast.

Those eyes.

Josh finished his last semester of classes and is now a college grad. We are so proud of him!! Rynna was kind enough to help him open his bundtinis so we could celebrate.

Thanks for always dropping by Every New Day. I really love this community and have been bummed because I can't seem to organize my time well enough to consistently write here. I appreciate you all though, and would love to connect with more of you on Instagram (@everynewday_blog) and Twitter (@everynewdayblog). Say hi anytime! And if i owe you an email, it's coming soon!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Discovering Magic: Kindergarten Addition

This little dude (my nephew) starts kindergarten on Monday! I went with him to orientation tonight and afterward we toured the school. At one point he told us he had to go potty, so we used the opportunity to teach him how to tell the boy's restroom from the girl's by looking at the little people on the signs. The girls have on a dress, and the dudes have on pants. Foreshadowing (wait for it). He quickly identified the boy's restroom and invited us to join him. After explaining to him that we couldn't go in because we were ladies, he squared his shoulders, held his chin high, and went in by himself like a big boy. A couple of seconds later he came running back to the door with his pants down around his ankles (underwear still on, thankfully). For a brief moment I thought he was scared after having to go in by himself and had decided to bail. Boy was I wrong! He threw his arms in the air and pointing wildly toward the inside of the restroom he shouted, "come look at these cool potties!" Needless to say, the kid had never seen a urinal until that very moment. I wish I'd captured a picture, better yet a video of him standing in the doorway of the bathroom in his cartoon character covered boxer briefs. The look on his face was sheer amazement. He was so excited through the whole tour, and could obviously not wait to start school, but man, the "cool potties" were like icing on the cake. What did I do? Well, I'm his aunt, so i just stood there laughing and secretly high fived him a million times in my mind! My sister however, being the awesome mom that she is, didn't miss a beat. She had his pants up and we were moving on before he was even able to consider running outside of the restroom to announce his discovery to the large crowd of other parents and children passing in swarms through the hallway.

After the tour we sat out on the lawn by the playground and had a picnic. It was a relaxing evening and a great way to introduce him to what will become his new home away from home for the next year. 

To his future teacher, whoever she may be: have fun with this little dude! I'm sure there will be many more "standing in front of a crowd of people with his pants down announcing the magic toilets" moments throughout the school year. And to my sweet, sweet nephew: I'll always be here to tell the story of your first moment of glory in a public school. It ranks right up there with your confession at daycare. I love you little man!

-For more laughs, check out that daycare link above, and this post on his three really good wishes.