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Friday, August 30, 2013

Lego Par-tay

My darlingest oldest child turned six a few weeks ago.  Sniff sniff.  And he's starting KINDERGARTEN next week!  It's the beginning of the end!  He's practically graduating and leaving me tomorrow!
But I digress.

We threw him a rockin' Lego party this year.  I have a policy on small children's birthday parties: cute, fun and SIMPLE.  So his party was not the elaborate toast of Pinterest.  But it was cute, it was fun, and it was just the right amount of simple for me.

To start with, here is the invitation:
We built that 6 ourselves from my son's extensive Lego collection, then I photographed it on our kitchen table with no special lighting.  Brightened up the colors a bit in Photoshop, then added the text.
Notice we planned on an hour and a half.  That's 'cause last year's water party was two hours and we were DYING by the end of it.  Kids required entertaining far more than they did when we were little, I'll tell ya that!  :P

Anyway, we had just a few activities. Building and racing cars. Cake and ice cream.  Opening presents.  Pinata.

I ordered a random bulk mix of Legos and 10 sets of wheels on eBay.  The random mix was terrific.  (The wheels were perfect too, exactly as pictured.)  My boy and I sorted out the pieces into categories (double wide flat, single wide flat, double wide regular, single wide regular, curved slanted pieces, bigger flat pieces, miscellaneous transparent pieces) and then the day of the party, each kid got a set of wheels and then they each got to be creative and use the random pieces to build their cars.

My husband built a simple but awesome track out of scrap MDF and particle board we had in the garage, leftover from various other building endeavors.  So as the kids finished, they raced their cars, and once everyone was done, we had our official races.

And of course, everyone needed a first place ribbon (cut from this Silhouette file, stamped in the middle with this Blue Ribbon set from Stampin' Up!, and adhesive bar pins added to the back).

Then we had cake
Yes, I know my icing job is lumpy and bumpy.  But the kids all identified it as a Lego nonetheless!
and ice cream and opened presents.

Last, but not least, the kids took turns whacking a pinata in the front yard as parents began to arrive.

Cute, fun and simple.

Last but not least, I firmly believe in sending thank you notes.  And sending them the old fashioned way.
Printed these off on cardstock and cut them into postcards (cheaper postage, you see!  Perfect for a kid's thank you notes).  My son wrote their names (I wrote their addresses), he wrote Thanks (then I wrote the message he dictated) and he signed his name.  Excellent team work.  :)

Top Books of All Time - August

A friend of mine messaged me to tell me how much she'd enjoyed Ten Girls to Watch and asked what else I liked to read...so I sent her some all time favorites.  And then thought, "I should do a post about these."  So I just decided that the last Friday of every month would be not for current reads, but old favorites.  So here we go.  :)

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova
Dracula.  SO interesting.  This book appealed to me largely because of the origins of Dracula: Wallachia, a region of Romania. (Romania has a special place in my heart because of the semester I spent there in college.) I LOVED the book. I will admit, it's not a book for everyone. It is at times very academic in tone and certainly not fast paced, but the story is fascinating. If you like history, I recommend it to you.

Without Reservations: The Travels of an Independent Woman by Alice Steinbach
A travel memoir.  Think Eat Pray Love, except a million trillion times better (I HATED Eat Pray Love).  This I loved.  ABSOLUTELY loved.  I think I should reread it.  Right now.  And it's 2:45 AM (I can't sleep), so that's saying something.

Indelible by Kristen Heitzmann
I wavered whether or not to post this one, since I reviewed it on this blog a couple years ago, but for new followers....it's just so good!
I got this for free with the Blogging for Books program I am part of.  I don't always love the books I get through this.  I don't always LIKE them, for that matter.  But this book has earned a permanent spot on my Kindle.  I found it fascinating.  My degree is in Psychology, and the workings of the mind have always interested me.  One of the main characters, Natalie, has eidetic memory.  There is much debate over whether or not eidetic memory such as this actually exists, but the idea of it is more than intriguing.  I loved that the author took such a concept and created an entire story around it.  She did embellish eidetic memory a bit, in that Natalie did not just have faces locked in her head, she saw right through people, to the honest good and bad.  Fascinating, the idea that such an ability could exist.
And the story itself is gripping.  Couldn't put it down, as the cliche goes.  And though the events were perhaps extreme, I think it still maintained a sense of believability.
Adventure, danger and of course, a little romance.

Anyway, next Friday it's back to my current reading material.  Until then, get your hands on one of these, you just might love it too.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Blue Ribbon Card

I'm no longer a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, but the demonstrators I swap with have kindly included me for another year of swaps.  So much fun for me!  It's like Christmas, getting all the cards in the mail.  :)  Anyway, here is the card I made a few weeks ago:
Stamp Set: Blue Ribbon
Ink:  Gumball Green, Primrose Petals and Basic Black
Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Gumball Green and Whisper White
Designer Series Paper: Basic Black from Neutrals Stack
Big Shot: Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder

I still adore Stampin' Up! but it's time for me to adore them as a customer rather than a demonstrator.  So now I'm linking to my upline demonstrator, Pam Morgan, she is wonderful and if you want to place an order, you can do so through her website.

Linking up here:
{M} Twigg Studios-Skip to My Lou-The DIY Showoff-Mad in Crafts-Marvelously Messy-Pinkopotamus-Sumo's Sweet Stuff-Making the World Cuter-Sew Can DoC.R.A.F.T.- Keeping It Simple-Creating My Way to Success-All Things Fee-Craft-o-Maniac-Boogieboard Cottage-Be Colorful-Between Naps on the Porch-I Should Be Mopping the Floor {T} Today's Creative Blog-Tip Junkie-Cherished Bliss-A Diamond in the Stuff-Sugar Bee Crafts-Reasons to Skip the Housework-Me and My Boys-Funky Polkadot Giraffe-Hope Studios-Creative Itch-Not Just a Housewife-At Home with K-My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia-Home Stories A2Z-DIY by Design-Primitive and Proper {furniture only}-Elizabeth & Co.-Project Queen-Coastal Charm-Ladybug Blessings-Homework-Topsy Turvy (third Tuesdays)-New Nostalgia {W} Tea Rose Home-Someday Crafts-Lil' Luna-Creations by Kara -Sew Much Ado-My Girlish Whims-Savvy Southern Style-Seven Thirty Three-Sugar and Dots-The Trendy Treehouse-Southern Lovely -Polkadots on Parade-Restore Interiors-Ginger Snap Crafts-Fireflies and Jellybeans-Organize and Decorate Everything-Rae Gun Ramblings {Th} The Shabby Creek Cottage-House of Hepworths-The Brambleberry Cottage-The 36th Avenue-Yesterday on Tuesday-Momnivore's Dilemma-Beyond the Picket Fence-Somewhat Simple-A Glimpse Inside-Domestically Speaking {paint only}-A Creative Princess-Christina's Adventures {$20}-Tales from Bloggeritaville-A Little Knick Knack-Crafty, Scrappy, Happy-Two Yellow Birds Decor-The Girl Creative {F} Thirty Handmade Days-Romantic Home-Remodelaholic-Shabby Nest-Lovely Crafty Home-WhipperBerry-At the Picket Fence-Finding Fabulous-delicate CONSTRUCTION-My Repurposed Life-Naptime Crafters-Chic on a Shoestring Budget Decorating-Fingerprints on the Fridge-504 Main-French Country Cottage-See Vanessa Craft-It's a Hodgepodge Life-Truly Lovely-Simply Designing-Miss Mustard Seed {furniture only}-Simply Sweet Home-Joyful Stamper-Craftionary-Release Me Create-Simple Home Life-Family Ever After-Addicted to Decorating-One Artsy Mama {S} Funky Junk Interior-Ladybird Lane-Tatertots and Jello-Craft Envy

Sunday, August 25, 2013

DIY Wedding B&H: Details

Okay, the details.
I took very few photos while I made these (in WAY too much of a hurry), so they will not be tutorials, just an explanation.  If you want any further details or have any questions, please feel free to email me at diykindagirl@hotmail.com.

table

Okay, I'll cover the specifics of the pedestals and accompanying flowers, candles and patterned paper frames when I talk centerpieces.
Hanging 16X20 Our Love Story:
I painted a thrift store frame, and looped striped ribbon over it before putting it all back together.
The print I created in Photoshop, using guidance from this tutorial on creating chalkboard effect.  The fonts I used are Sketch Rockwell, Objectum, Janda Stylish Script and CK Doodling.  Then hung it to the underside of the deck with the  striped ribbon and a staple gun!
Bunting banner:
Made from designer series paper by Stampin' Up! in calypso coral, night of navy and basic gray.  The navy and white striped paper I created in Photoshop and printed at home.  The flags are that I folded over half an inch and sewed down, then strung on jute twine.  Also stapled to the underside of the deck!
Hanging B & H:
I used Birmingham font for the B and H, and New Cicle for the ampersand.  Traced them onto cardboard and cut them out with an exacto knife.  I wrapped the B and H in jute twine  and covered the ampersand in the calypso coral patterned paper.  Hung from the underside of the deck with striped ribbon and jute twine.
Storybook for guest book:
Fanny's Dream, the perfect storybook for newlyweds!  I had a framed print I designed in Photoshop that said "And they lived happily ever after. Please sign the storybook on a TEXT page."  Just used ultra fine point sharpies

Gift and card table:

Patterned paper bunting, same as above.  Just added vinyl letters cut from scrap vinyl in New Cicle font.
Already had the basket, just added the striped ribbon
Thrift store frame painted, easel I already had.

Overhead buntings:

My favorite project!
These are white thrift store sheets I dyed.  Then cut the flags out (8.5 inches tall, 8 inches wide), ripped 2 inch wide strips and made something that resembles double fold bias tape with them, then sewed it all together.  About 180 feet of bunting total.  And I love it.


Pedestals were made from scrap MDF and 2X4's that I trimmed the curved edges off of and then ripped right down the middle lengthwise.  Painted all the components with Rustoleum Painters Touch in Granite Satin, then assembled with construction adhesive.  Trimmed the rough edges of the MDF with striped paper I printed out.
The flowers!  Cut out of calypso coral cardstock from Stampin' Up! on my Silhouette Cameo, using this cut file, with some extra petals added.  Creatively assembled (or at least I think so!) around a Dollar Tree tealight.
Candles, mason jars and tealights, cut the covers out of night of navy cardstock from Stampin' Up! also on my Silhouette, with this and this cut file, both adjusted to fit the jars.
Patterned paper frames, covered in calypso coral Designer Series Paper, then I added the B&H in night of navy cardstock, cut with my Silhouette in New Cicle font.

Food tables:

Last minute labor of love.  Pleated rosettes made from basic gray and calypso coral, cut into strips (11" by just over 2.75") and folded one way and then the other every half inch.  Two strips put together to make one rosette.
White lettering cut out on my Silhouette, skinny jeans font.

So there you go, details.  Again, if you want more information, feel free to email me at diykindagirl@hotmail.com
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