Happy Valentine's Day!

Are these not the cutest Valentine's ever? I was looking for something more creative than the grocery story fold and seal type, but at the same time did not want to slave over 19 handmade Valentine's that would end up in the trash before the actual Vday rolled around. When I saw the idea on nannygoat, who got it here, I knew I had to make them. A brief photo shoot, 5 minutes with Photoshop, and a few tries uploading to Walgreens and they were done. I love them. And it only cost $4.75 to have 25 printed.
Have a happy Valentine's Day, all!


Stenciled Furniture: A New Love

I opened my Trees and Trend ad the other day and saw this:

Do you see the BLACK damask-stenciled chest in the center? Oh, be still my heart. I love it. LOVE. IT. I want it. I already have the perfect spot in the new house for just such a piece.

If my mother read my blog (which I'm pretty sure she doesn't), she would be laughing hysterically at the fact that I am drooling over anything stenciled. I used to roll my eyes at her constant need to stencil--a pineapple on the front door, multiple "Welcome Friends" signs, you get the idea. But this is not your country mama's stenciling. This is updated, chic, and completely DIYable.

So now I am on the look out for a chest to use for this project. I may have something here that will work, as most of what we have will not make the move with us, at least not it its current form. Much of what does come will only stay until we replace it with what we really want and what will work in the new space. When I find what I am looking for and actually do this (it could be awhile), I'll be sure to post the pictures and step by step. Sarah @ Thrifty Decor Chick did a great job stenciling an old sewing machine cabinet she found in the trash. WARNING: if you visit her bblog you will read every.single. post. Twice.

So...what have you stenciled??


It's That Time Again

My sweet Avery will be four in exactly two months. That means I have two months and 2 days to get her party planned. Yikes!!

I have so much fun coming up with the themes, researching ideas and creating all the little details that really make the parties special. So far we've had:

Of course, now Avery is old enough to have an (ever-changing) opinion of her party themes. At first she wanted an Ice Cream Social (my dad picks her up from daycare every Friday and takes her to get ice cream). Then it turned into a Lollipop Party like the fabulous one done by TomKat. But...the more I looked for and tried to come up with ideas, the more I realized how MUCH this theme has been used in the past year. I can see why--it's super cute and fun--but I didn't want to be jumping on this party wagon so late in the game, and really, most of my ideas had been done.

About this time the Munchkin had some party inspiration of her own...

Have you seen it yet? Definitely my favorite Disney movie since Aladdin, and that's going waaay back. Tiana is strong and sassy, and does not immediately fall in love with the Prince just from looking at him, as most of the princesses do. Granted, he is a frog when she meets him, but still. Their relationship grows as they get to know one another, as it should. And Tiana has plans outside of falling in love and never gives up on them. And she has a mother.

We took Avery to see it when it first came out: it was her first time to see a movie in the theater. I think she enjoyed the popcorn and coke and leaving to go to the bathroom as much as the movie, but nevertheless, we have been in full Princess and the Frog mode around here ever since.

Now, if you know me at all, you know that I do. not. do. commercialized. themes. I don't want my parties to look like I went to the Princess and the Frog aisle at the party store and bought all I saw. But if this is the theme Ave wants, what do you do??

...A fairytale Princess and the Frog party with lots of princesses and frogs, but no Tiana or Naveem. BUT, as a subtle tie in to the movie, I'm going to use the spring green, lavendar and light blue that appears through out the movie. This paper is PERFECT:

It's actually a lot softer in person. It has all of the colors, plus a watery, lilpad-esque quality to it that I love.

I also purchased the new Paisley cartridge for my Cricut for its two frogs. By the way, this immediately became my new favorite cart. LOVE. IT. I'm going to make frog invites with googly eyes and flower embellishments (of course!).

I actually have every element planned (I can't WAIT to show you the table settings!!!), which is what happens when the sky dumps 6-8" on you here in the South. No one knows how to drive in it, so we stay put. Since I got home Thursday afternoon, I have walked to the left of my house to the new one (which has the first floor framed and is just how I imagined it) and to the right to my in-laws. I am craving a trip to Hobby Lobby so bad you cannot believe, for no other reason but to get out of this house!! I was able to get an order placed to Oriental Trading last night, so the first of the party things should arrive next week.

So even though things are planned on paper, there are a couple of things I'm going to enlist you, dear readers, to help me with:
  1. Does anyone know how to line up the Cricut so that you can cut around pre-printed paper? I'm wanting the invitation wording to be on a frog cut out, so I would need to print it out before I cut. Can you do this?? (without simply using trial and error and tons of paper)
  2. I have this idea to make cute signs for the food with fairytale inspired wording. So far I have "From the Royal Garden" for veggie tray, "Happily Ever After" for sweets, and "Frog Legs (they taste like chicken)" for the chicken tenders. I'm not completely set on a menu, which would help, I know, but if you have ideas for sayings, I'm sure I could make them work with whatever I decide to serve. Or maybe I'll just use those ideas to create the menu.

If you have any ideas, please let me know in a comment.

I can't wait to get started with this one. I have a feeling it will end up being my favorite yet!!

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