Archive of ‘Celebrate’ category

Sunshine Safari Theme Baby Shower

Well, it’s been over a month since I helped out with the Operation Shower Sunshine Safari theme event in San Diego and I’ve been dying to share photos with you! The experience was AMAZING and I was honored to be asked to join in showering such deserving military moms. The baby shower was hosted by Operation Shower, Birdies for the Brave and the Farmers Insurance Open  — who all came together to honor 40 deserving moms whose spouses are deployed while serving in the military. Pottery Barn Kids donated a ton of goodies not only for the new moms and babies but also for us designers to use in our tablescapes.

safari theme | decorations

Here’s a glimpse at my table. Inspiration came from the cheerful safari printables created for the event by paper and cake [you can get them here] and I selected a few Pottery Barn Kids items that I thought would work perfectly. I used elephant pillowcases from PBK in the large vases and their glass pink and yellow bottles to hold flowers at each place setting.

operation shower

Here’s a close up {images above courtesy of Jackie Culmer}. And see that little orange monkey above? The SUPER talented Edible Details created the most adorable fondant animals to match the safari printables. They were SO cute!

safari theme

 I played with layering a combination of textures (burlap, grass mats, charger plates, ribbon and florals) and also combined the earthy colors of brown and green with bright & vibrant pops of pink, orange and yellow.

operation shower san diego

Fresh flowers are my staple. You can make any table look gorgeous with great flowers.

safari theme table

My centerpiece was my favorite element! This giraffe was a Hobby Lobby find (I spray painted it white) that I made the focal point of the table. I added the pink single rose to the bed of moss at the last minute and just loved how it all turned out.

A warm thank you to Operation Shower for inviting me to participate in this event, I can’t wait to help with another.

A little bonus was meeting up with party gal friends (old & new!)

entertaining bloggers

From left to right: Shannon of Cupcakes & Cutlery, Rebekah of A Blissful Nest, Nancy of A to Zebra Celebrations, Jenn of Hostess with the Mostess & Kim of The TomKat Studio.

There was so much talent amongst all these designers, I want you to see each table they did — they were each so unique. Check out this post on A Blissful Nest for a great photo-recap.

I’ll leave you with a gorgeous image of the dessert station styled by the super-talented Marie of Sweets Indeed.

 safari theme party

Be sure to check out Marie’s post for all of the dessert details and sweet vendors!

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WIN! Southern Living Wedding Planner & Keepsake

Are you planning a wedding? Know someone who is? The new Southern Living Wedding Planner & Keepsake is AMAZING!

 

wedding planning timeline

 

I really couldn’t have found this at a better time — I’m currently helping my sister-in-law who is in full wedding planning mode! As her sister-in-law, wedding planner, and hello…. Maid of Honor, I want all the best resources at my fingertips! What I’m loving about this planner:

-It has a great wire spiral binding so I can open it up and it will lay flat. It also has great pockets to put in business cards, notes, and swatches.

-The step-by-step wedding planning timeline and guide feels so different than typical wedding planning books I’ve seen — it’s refreshing!

-The photography is top-notch. I’ve already been inspired by flipping through the gorgeous pages.

Here’s a little peek inside:

wedding planning timeline - book

Want to WIN a copy?

To Enter:

Leave a comment on this post telling me what you love most about weddings!

Good luck! Contest ends March 2, 2012 at 10pm PST.

P.S. Stay tuned for a lot more wedding posts over the next 4 months!

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A Birthday Breakfast Party

When it came time to choose a theme for my little London’s 5th birthday — I knew I wanted to do a birthday breakfast and decided it would be fun to make it also a pajama party. Since she’s a little young for a traditional sleepover, it was a nice twist and made for a really unique birthday!

birthday breakfast

 My inspiration for the color palette was non-peril sprinkles — they just scream BIRTHDAY!

pajama party

The party was on her actual birthday (2 days before Christmas!) and it was fun to wake her up with new “birthday pajamas” and a darling pancake necklace (I found it on Etsy here).

birthday breakfast party

The breakfast table was set for 12 little ones and I made it bright & cheery — just like a birthday morning should be!

activities | birthday breakfast

I designed simple paper placemats  for each child to color (FREE printable link at bottom of the post!). This kept their little hands busy while the parents greeted one another and grabbed a cup of coffee.

Coffee, creamer, chocolate spoons, birthday bark and fruit made up a little “rise & shine” station for the moms & dads.

 

cereal - breakfast party

The real sugary fun took place over at the cereal buffet and birthday pancakes station! Loved the colorful birthday banner from A To Z Celebrations (and it matched the table runner she made perfectly)!

cereal buffet

All the sugary cereal a kid could dream of — a true birthday treat for our little one! Served in these darling kraft paper bowls. I stamped the wooden spoons with “Happy Birthday” which was an easy way to add something special. The vintage milk carafes were a great thrift-store find.

Mini yogurt parfaits, funfetti pancakes and flavored syrups were all out for grabs. The Mr. whipped up pancakes and bacon to order outside since it was such a gorgeous December morning.

These vintage syrup dispensers were also an Etsy find — and I LOVE having them in my collection now :).

breakfast party

My other favorite element was the breakfast “dessert” table. Donuts and cinnamon rolls that delighted every kid (and several parents)!

It was just so much fun to put together! The donut pops stood up perfectly in these bright containers from Blumbox (they have new inserts which made it super easy).

And these little edible toppers from Edible Details … can you say, PERFECT? I could not get enough of these darling stacks of pancakes — they were so adorable! And the muffin toppers matched our invite perfectly, just so cute!

Activities and Games: We let the kids make cereal necklaces and also played a pancake relay game.

pancake cake

The birthday pancake-cake looked like a stack of giant pancakes, but was really a cake! It was a little tough to convince the birthday girl that we weren’t serving more pancakes (that yes, this was an actual CAKE), but once she tasted it — it was a hit! This is the recipe I used.

For favors, we sent the sugar-overloaded guests home with something that would pick them up after their (inevitable) afternoon crash … Fruity Pebbles rice crispy treats. Oh yes, try them — they are so good!

pajama party

And the birthday girl, awe so sweet :). A big thanks to all those who helped with her party, attended her special day (bright & early!) and to those reading now — thank you!

** I got so many requests for the placemats I designed that I am sharing FREE downloads and have included ages 1-6. Feel free to print and use at your own Birthday Breakfast party! Download the signs & placemats here.

 

For a look back at London’s 4th birthday, check out her cowgirl party.

Invites, Paper Elements, Styling | Thoughtfully Simple

Cinnamon Roll & Muffin Toppers | Edible Details

Table Runner & Birthday Banner | A To Z Celebrations

Party Rentals | Allie’s Rentals

Holders for Donut Pops | Blumebox

Cups, bowls, coffee dispenser, spoons, parfait cups | Garnish

 

 

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Superbowl Party | Ideas & Inspiration

The big game is this Sunday! Are you hosting an party or having people over to watch the game? Whether you are expecting a big turnout or just a few family members, make it an  event with a little Superbowl fun!

Each year I host an completely informal gathering so all the adults can get together and enjoy the game and just hang out. (Hostess Tip: Rent a bounce-house to keep all the rowdy kids entertained in the BACK YARD!)

These four recipes are typically on my menu each year:

Superbowl Party

Get the recipes to these Superbowl food ideas. This year I hear my mother-in-law might be bringing some clam chowder — YUM.

Halftime Snacks

I like the idea of having a halftime snack table. The kids can grab what they’d like, adults have snacks handy and the hostess can be off-duty!

Decor is typically very simple. A couple team balloons and maybe a paper pennant banner hung somewhere. I also gather chalkboards and draw out football plays on them (I place them on the mantle near the TV). I also get team colored cups and make each person claim the color they will be cheering for.

I LOVE this chili bar idea from Chris at Celebrations at Home (I just might have to try this out myself!):

Isn’t this perfect for Superbowl? Check out her full post + recipes here.

I’ve also been collecting great sources for printables and decor that would be perfect for a Superbowl party over on Pinterest. Check out my Football board for more recipes, football dessert ideas, and even fun games (like rate the commerial and Superbowl bingo!).

So, what will YOU be doing this Sunday? Have a favorite Superbowl snack? I’d LOVE to know — I’m always eager to try something new!

Homepage featured image from HWTM which is included in the Pinterest source roundup.

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It’s a Sunshine Safari with Operation Shower

How’s your week going friends? Fantastical I hope (yes, that’s a real word — we’ll at least it should be). I’ve been a little quiet this week so I wanted to check in with you all and say “hello” and share what I’ve been working on.

Operation Shower Sunshine Safari

I’m super excited to be helping with an amazing baby shower next week for a group of very deserving military moms. I’ll be one of a handful of party stylist  working on next week’s Operation Shower. If you’re not familiar with Operation Shower, here’s an interview I did with chief party planner Amy a while back (it’s worth the read!). This baby shower will be presented by Operation Shower and Birdies For The Brave and will be sponsored in part by Pottery Barn Kids, Carousel Designs and Carl’s Jr. It’s been a blast working with PBK during the design process. Check out our group Pinterest board where we’ve been gathering some virtual inspiration:

operation shower

With darling printables from paper & cake and great finds from Pottery Barn Kids, I’m in total brainstorming mode. The creative juices are flowing — here’s a sneak peek at what I’m up to (it’s sort of a creative mess in my office today!).

operation shower

See that cute little guy in the middle? Yep, he’s coming with me (and bringing some pals too). I can’t wait to show you more soon.

Now, I better get back to work, only a few more days until I head to San Diego. I just realized that next week I’ll be knocking TWO items off my Party Planner Bucket List (#3 and #5) which is a bonus! I can’t wait to reunite with many of my party planning friends and meet up with many for the first time in the flesh :).

Updates to come on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest — I can’t wait to share all of the great deigns and more of this soon-to-be amazing event!

 

 

 

 

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Baking and Craft Party

If you’ve been reading Thoughtfully Simple for the past few years, you’ll remember my oldest daughter Taylor’s past birthday parties. We’ve done a candy party and a zebra party which I shared. Today, I’m sharing her 11th birthday party which was a lot of fun.

She completely helped mold the theme of her party which made it all the more fun (and challenging) to plan. We planned the party decorations and activities and then came up with a theme (which is completely opposite of how I typically operate). But hey, maybe she’s on to something? We could all be reading her party blog a few years from now.

She wanted to have tie-dye cupcakes (she loved these St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes we made last year). She also wanted to decorate them (check and check). She wanted arts & crafts (check), plus she wanted green, purple and blue decor (check). Here’s how we pulled it all together:

craft party

Bake. Craft. Create.

I designed the invite (with a little emergency design help from my go-to-gal Kori of Paper and Pigtails).

baking party

The decorating stage was set. I premade our colorful cupcakes the night before to make it easier.

craft party ideas

When the girls arrived, they began making their paper flowers that would adorn their new aprons. They made all types of darling flowers using cupcake liners, glue, and brads. I loved how unique each looked! Then, they chose an apron and we attached their flower.

I’m calling the aprons “shabby chic” because I made them and I have no clue how to operate a sewing machine. I’ve had one for 8 years and can barely turn it on (so please don’t look closely at this photo, there is a grandmother rolling in her grave somewhere I just know it).

And now they were ready to get their decorating on. And boy did the go for it!

baking party | cupcake decorating

They were each so unique and fun!

craft party

Each girl chose their most-favorite cupcake to take home. We put them in little boxes (they fit perfectly) and they took them home for a sweet reminder of the party. The other cupcakes went on our stand and we later sang happy birthday and enjoyed them.

a to z celebrations

 

We also enjoyed these adorable chocolate covered Oreos (the birthday girl has been requesting these since her last birthday party). They were so cute and delicious, I could use one right about now.The purple table runner from A to Z Celebrations was a perfect match — it had just a touch of glitter which worked into our theme perfectly.

For all the unconvential planning that went into this, I’d say it turned out great. The girls had a blast and hopfully we’ve shared some simple ideas for your next baking party or craft party!

The rest of the party was a pretty typical pre-teen affair. Pizza, giggles and lots of dancing went down.

Do you remember your 11th birthday? What was the best birthday party you remember as a child?

Boxes for cupcakes | Garnish

Oreos | Sweet Temptations

Table Runner | A to Z Celebrations

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