July 16th, 2009 |

Rubber Ducky Baby Shower

Rubber Ducky Baby Shower

“Rubber Ducky, you’re the one….you make our baby shower lots of fun!”

I had a reader write to me asking for ideas for a gender-neutral baby shower.  The first thing I thought of was the color yellow, and quickly came up with the idea for a rubber ducky theme party.  Playful, and easy to do – this baby shower is sure to bring smiles and giggles from all of your guests!

Invite your guests with this darling invitation from Minted.  Carry the yellow color into your party decorations and accent it with blue and orange.  Creative a bright and cheery tablescape with blue placemats, yellow plates and a diaper cake centerpiece.  Take basic, blue place cards and dress them up by giving them a scalloped edge with a pair of scissors.  The rounded edges remind me of bubbles….perfect for our bath-time theme!

Instead of serving cake as dessert, set up a dessert and candy buffet.  Find all different types of yellow candy, such as lemon heads, jelly beans, lemon bars, etc. and use different size vases, apothecary jars and cake plates to set up your display.  Add personalized labels to each container – try these labels from Paper Source (there is even a template on-line to help you print on them!)

Send your guests home with a rubber ducky candle from Beau-Coup to remember the event!

Images: rubber ducky candle (beau-coup.com), rubber duck invitation (minted.com), place setting (hostessblog.com), placecards (theknot.com), candy buffet (projectwedding.com), baby shower image (inmagine.com)

July 15th, 2009 |

Flower Power Girl’s Birthday Party

Flower Birthday Party (small)

When it comes to planning a little girl’s birthday party, you can’t go wrong with pink and flowers.  Explode this idea into a festive party full sassy cheer!

Invite your guests with this darling invitation from Tiny Prints.  It’s colorful, full of flowers and exclaims the most important part….Party time!  Create a fun and girly table setting by using grass place mats, and a vase full of gerber daisies in shades of pink.  Your little guests will be in awe when they walk into the party and see a whole garden set up on the table!

Keep your food simple and stylish – serve pb & j sandwiches, but make them extra special by using a cookie cutter to cut them into flower shapes.  Use a smaller flower cookie cutter to make a flower-shaped fruit salad (mix in some melon balls for a playful look).  Serve the little girls pink lemonade to drink and cupcakes for dessert!  I love the polka dot design on these….but stay tuned for a darling, and easy-to-do cupcake idea!

After a day full of flowers, send your guests home with a bloom of their own.  Fill a small pail full of candy, stickers, and a lollipop flower.   (Cut out a paper daisy from solid color paper and poke a lollipop through its center.)

Images: invitation (tinyprints.com), floral party dress (bodenusa.com), flower lollipop party favor (skiptomylou.com), cupcakes (amyatlas.com)

July 1st, 2009 |

Sail Away: A Nautical Children’s Birthday Party

Sail Away (small)

Keeping with the red, white & blue theme this week in celebration of the 4th of July, here is an adorable party idea for your favorite little sailor.  Create a nautical theme birthday party full of stripes and sailboats!

I found this adorable party invitation and party favor bags from a company called Imprintables – preppy, but with a touch of modern charm!  It set the tone for the rest of the party….a color scheme of red, white and blue, bold stripes and modern sailboat silhouettes.

Decorate with nautical flags (I found the perfect ones at Land of Nod) and striped tablecloths.  Use grosgrain ribbon to accent all of your details – stripe napkin rings, and tie ribbon around bowls of food.  Use small wooden boats clustered together as a centerpiece.  Instead of serving a traditional birthday cake, serve sailboat-themed cupcakes, cookies or rice crispy treats.

If you are looking for a fun activity for the children at the party, fill up a large baby pool outside.  Buy a bunch of small, plastic boats and write numbers on the bottom of a few of them.  Buy prizes to correspond to the numbers on the boats.  Float the boats in the pool, and have the children take turns picking a boat.  If they choose a boat with a number, they win a prize!

Images: nautical flag decoration (landofnod.com), ahoy sailboat gift and party favor (imprintables.blogspot.com), stripe napkin rings and bowl of strawberries (socialcouture.com), tiered cookie stand (instyleweddings.com)

June 24th, 2009 |

4th of July BBQ

4th of July BBQ

4th of July is right around the corner!  Have you started planning your holiday weekend yet?!  A lot of times we forget about the little guests at parties – so today I am going to focus on tailoring your BBQ to make the kids happy!  The 4th is all about stars, stripes, flags and fireworks – so let’s talk about how to incorporate these into your BBQ.

Set up an area especially for the kids – a picnic table with kid-friendly dishes and paper napkins, and a play area with lounge chairs and umbrellas to provide some sun relief.  Pottery Barn Kids has these darling umbrellas – available in different colors and patterns, they are the perfect thing to provide a little shade and a whole lot of style in your backyard.  Put out a couple of small pools and a sprinkler for the kids to play in – but don’t forget a stack of towels!

Add a little fun to your food – take a basic pb & j sandwich, but cut out stars with a cookie cutter to add a bit of patriotic fun.  Serving cheeseburgers to your adult guests?  Make smaller versions (otherwise known as sliders) for the kids, and stick  in an American flag.  The food doesn’t have to be complicated – a little creativity will go a long way and the kids are sure to have fun!

Images: star sandwiches (bhg.com), drink bucket (inmagine.com), burgers (southernliving.com), kids on the dock (pbkids.com), picnic table (potterybarn.com)

June 17th, 2009 |

Playdate Pizzazz

Snack Table with Pizzazz

Whether you are the hostess of a child’s birthday party or just trying to out-do yourself for your next play date, I have the perfect idea for you from Parent’s Magazine!

Make your snack table come alive with a few simple steps (and delicious treats)! Cover a table with butcher paper and paint it into the cutest buffet ever. Plan out your masterpiece according to your bowls and platters. Pizzas make great wheels, silicone cupcake liners work perfectly as caterpillar cookie stands, carrot sticks are colorful for sun rays.  You get the idea…..get creative and plan your “landscape” and menu together!

The Land of Nod Summer Sale!

June 17th, 2009 |

Surfin’ Pool Party

Surfin' Pool Party

Surfin' Decor

Let your kids cool off during the dog days of summer by hosting a Surfin’ Pool Party!

If you are lucky enough to live by an ocean – plan your party for the beach!  For those of us that are a little more land-locked, find a local pool to host your party.

Invite your guests with this darling invitation from Tiny Prints.  Request that your guests come wearing beach theme clothing – Hawaiian print swim trunks or shirts, sundresses, flowers in the girl’s hair.

You can really have some fun decorating for this party….have your kids help you prop up surfboards, and stuff wetsuits to make faux-surfers. Turn beach towels into tablecloths, have a surfing video playing on the TV in the background, and popular surf music playing to get everyone in the mood. Looking for suggestions?  Reggae music or anything by The Beach Boys would be perfect!

If you plan on having this theme party at home, check out these great wall decals from Target.  The surf boards would be darling on a wall behind the birthday cake!

Disposable paper goods are definitely the easiest way to go – so check out these supplies at Birthday in a Box.   All that’s left?  The perfect party favor!  Fill up small canvas beach bags with candy, an inflatable beach ball and little toys.  Make it easy on yourself by ordering them thru Birthday in a Box, too!

Surfin' Party Supplies

Images: surfing kids (coastalliving.com), surfboard cake (carriesellman.com), colorful drinks (bhg.com), food table (pbkids.com), cute swim trunks (bodenusa.com)

June 15th, 2009 |

Add a Little Fizz

Soda Shop

Add a little fizz and some retro fun to your next party with a soda bar!

Whether you decide to use old-fashioned soda pop (available in a variety of flavors – all with fabulous vintage logos on the bottles) or the modern day versions – choose a variety of colors and flavors and prominently show them off.  The colorful bottles can act as decorations for your party too!

Keep the bottles refrigerated until right before the party starts, and then arrange the bottles by color on a table.  Add a bucket full of ice, a stack of cups, and for those wanting to drink right out of the bottle – brightly colored plastic straws!

I think this idea would be darling for a child’s birthday party, an outdoor BBQ, or even a casual, summer wedding.

Images via Project Wedding

May 13th, 2009 |

Two Little Fish: A Baby Shower for Twins!

Fish Baby Shower

fish-baby-shower-invitation

A new baby joining the family is a great reason to have a party – but two babies?!  That’s cause for a huge celebration!

Our Mom-to-be is having the dream duo – a little boy and a little girl!  Since we have to go with a fairly gender neutral theme and the party is going to take place this summer, I though goldfish were the perfect theme!  This invitation from Tiny Prints is perfect – it creates a great color palette and has 2 little fish on it!

With a color palette of bold brights – orange, blue, yellow and green – and an accent of fish here and there – this party is sure to please our guest of honor.  Start by decorating your space with colorful lanterns – I love the square shape of these from organize.com.  If you are looking to carry your goldfish theme through even further, check out these goldfish lanterns (they would be super cute for a child’s birthday party, too).

For our tables, choose “happy flowers” such as dalias, gerber daisies, or sunflowers to create your centerpieces.  Use a round, clear vase and fill with 3 goldfish – your guests will love it!  Set your table with blue, orange and white dishes.  I love the ones pictured above, but if you are looking to re-create this look with some disposable paper goods – check out Plum Party Supplies for the great products below (blue scallop placemats, orange ruffle edge plates, and orange and blue vase gems).  I absolutely love the goldfish glasses pictured above from Crate & Barrel – perfect for the baby shower – but also great to use all summer long!Fish Baby Shower Party Supplies

Serve a colorful meal of healthy food – try stuffed peppers and a cherry tomato fava bean salad.  Serving wine or a champagne punch is always fun, but remember to include a non-alcoholic drink for your guest of honor!  I love these orange Izze sparkling juice bottles.  They are available in all different flavors (and colors to match your party theme) at Whole Foods Market and Target.

Looking for a creative party favor?  I love these golfish in a bag soaps!  Perfect for our theme!

Images: goldfish centerpiece (midwestliving.com), orange Izze drinks and placesetting (hostesswiththemostess.com)

April 29th, 2009 |

Safari Theme Children’s Birthday Party

Safari Party (small)

This Spring, encourage your kids to explore the backyard by throwing a Safari theme birthday party!

This easy-to-do adventure will thrill your  smallest explorers….here are a few ideas:

  • Use postcards of Africa as your invitations – write something cute, like “We are going WILD for Matthew’s 5th Birthday!”
  • To decorate your house and yard, make an animal track path throughout your house. Use black paint or markers to draw tracks on a roll of brown Kraft paper. Tape the long roll of paper to the floor so the kids can follow the animal footprints all the way to the party table.
  • Drape a mosquito net canopy from the ceiling and decorate it with toy bugs, plastic monkeys, giraffes and zebras.
  • Fill the area with clusters of animal print, brown and green latex balloons.
  • Set your food table with animal print plates, and red, orange and brown napkins and tumblers.
  • Use a large square of real or fake grass as your centerpiece – place bunches of bananas and animal crackers in the center of the table for when your hungry explorers return from their safari adventure.

You are going to need a few activities/games to keep your little explorers busy:

Enjoy the Safari…I hope your guests don’t get too WILD!

Images: kids in masks (potterybarnkids.com), goodie bags and monkey cupcakes (flickr.com), toy binoculars (orientaltrading.com), tablescape (cookiesmag.com)

April 22nd, 2009 |

May Day Celebration

May Day (small)

May Day is a celebrated tradition all over the world.  Celebrated on May 1st (half way between the spring equinox and the summer equinox) the traditions surrounding May Day vary by country. The common theme in most celebrations – the use of flowers!

May Day is a wonderful opportunity to gather your loved ones, your children’s friends or the neighborhood for an outdoor celebration.  The most popular activity on May Day is to decorate a tall pole with brightly colored ribbons or streamers.  The pole is usually carried in a parade and then placed in the ground at the center of a party.  People then dance around the May pole, holding the ends of the streamers or ribbon in their hands.

It’s a colorful day – and a great exuse to be outside!

Images: floral dress (bodenusa.com), cone favor (rebeccathuss.com), may day pictures (via flickr.com)

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