Bottles and Booties, diapers and pins, this is where the love begins!

Napkin

Last week I posted about my nephew’s first birthday and I thought it would be fun to share some party ideas from his baby shower that I hosted in February of 2012.

I chose an elephant theme and used blues and browns.  The centerpieces were white tulips and daisies in square vases with light blue polka dot ribbon secured with an elephant sticker.  They didn’t turn out exactly the way I planned; the florist used ivy and a little too many greens for my liking but it worked.

Flowers

I used Dolce Jeanna Delectable Desserts for the dessert table.  I had so much fun working with Jeannie Nafash!  We had blue elephant sugar cookies, chocolate covered graham crackers with blue icing, blue and white meringue bites, cheesecake bites, chocolate covered pretzels, mini cupcakes and several different types of candy.

Dessert Table

Elephant Cookies

Candy

As mentioned in a previous post I think the best shower favors are usually edible.  Because we chose so many different desserts I thought it would be fun to allow people to take some home to enjoy!  I found scalloped penny candy bags on Etsy to use as “goody bags.”  The bags were decorated with blue and brown bows and a sticker that said Babies Make Life Sweeter.  On the goodie bag table I used cylinder vases with peanuts inside as the centerpieces.

Goody Bags

Goody Bags 1

I am not a huge fan of games but it is almost like you have to have them at a baby shower.  My friend Laura Knapp Chadwick had recently thrown a shower for a friend and gave me several different ideas.

Game Table

On one table we had “advice cards” for the baby at every age.

Advice Cards

We did a baby food taste testing.

Baby Food

We also played “Baby Price is Right.”

Price is Right

I had a blast planning the shower and am so lucky to have a sister-in-law who let me take complete control!

Hass and Christie

Sprinkled with Love

Sign

It is hard to believe that I am old enough to have friends having babies let alone a friend having her second baby!  Last December my friend Meghan was expecting her second child but her first little girl.  My friends and I had thrown her a shower for her first baby Connor and wanted to do something to recognize the impending arrival of Julia.  Meghan asked that we keep the get together small so we decided on a “Sprinkle.”

We chose a pink and grey theme to match the pink and grey damask linens in the nursery.  We found invitations that matched our theme on Etsy and used the same vendor (Lauraleidesign) for the door sign as well as the cupcake toppers.

CupCake Toppers

We kept the flower arrangements simple.  We did mason jars with pink Gerber daisies for the living room and for the centerpieces we used three cylinder vases with Gerber Daisies and pink and white sprinkles.

Flowers

We had quiche, chicken salad sandwiches on croissants, a strawberry and spinach salad and fruit salad in individual cups with grey ribbon and pink diaper pins.

Table

Fruit Cups

We served pink lemonade in mason jars with grey gingham ribbon and pink buttons and prosecco in champagne glasses tied with pale pink ribbons.

Bar

Mason Jars

It is always hard to come up with clever favor ideas for showers.  I feel like favors can sometimes be tacky if not done right.  The rule that I stick to is a favor should be something edible or something that your guest will actually use.  When our friends were getting married the go-to favor was a sugar cookie to match the shower theme so I wanted to stay away from cookies this time.  For the Sprinkle we decided to give pale pink Essie nail polish to our guests; everyone loves a little pink on their nails!

I would consider the Sprinkle a success.  Baby Julia received lots of fun outfits including a beautiful Lilly shift from her Aunt Christie!  Everyone enjoyed catching up and it was the perfect size for a party for a second baby.  It was so much to plan and I look forward to being able to help with many more baby showers and sprinkles in the coming years!

Dinner this week! Yum!

What you will begin to learn about me is that I LOVE food and I LOVE to cook!  Growing up I always had a fascination with cooking magazines and as I have gotten older and the internet has become the norm I am now a bit Pinterest obsessed.  One blog that I have found via Pinterest and am now in love with is SkinnyTaste.com.   Gina always has healthy and inventive recipes on her site and so far everything I have tried has been delicious!

I find planning a menu for the week provides structure in my life and I find cooking a way to unwind after a tough day.  So from time to time I may share my menu for the week.

This week’s menu: 

Sunday- Linguini, shrimp and broccoli with a creamy cauliflower sauce.

Monday- Quinoa Burgers with a tzatziki sauce and sweet potato fries with a sriracha/light mayo dip.

Tuesday- Pork tenderloin (already seasoned and ready to go thanks Trader Joes!) and zucchini cakes

Wednesday- Breaded eggplant, polenta and marinara  (Cheating a bit on this one- it comes from Trader Joes)

Thursday- Salmon burgers and leftover zucchini cakes

Friday- Dinner Out

Eli’s First Birthday

Eli

My brother-in-law and sister-in-law have their hands full with the arrival of their second child so I offered to help plan my nephew’s first birthday party.  Eli is an adorable little boy and is also my first nephew so I couldn’t wait to get started!  Eli’s parents wanted to have a BBQ outside so I thought the best theme would be “Barn Yard Animals.”  I started with farm animal invitations that I found on Etsy.

The party was in mid-April so luckily we had decent weather!  I used cows as my inspiration and stuck to using reds, yellows and blacks.  We had red table cloths with animal cracker centerpieces; these also doubled as snacks for the guests.  The animal crackers were in round vases with black and white polka dot ribbons that were secured by cow stickers.  On the food table I used two larger mason jars with yellow gerber daisies.  These were wrapped in the same ribbon with animal stickers.  For drinks we used mason jars with black and white cow straws and personalized water bottles both of which I found on Etsy.

I found a great personalized bib and birthday hat from the Sunshine daydream Creations Etsy store and they were perfect for his birthday cake experience!  Eli had his own birthday cake while the rest of the guests enjoyed vanilla and chocolate cupcakes with barnyard animal cupcake toppers.

I couldn’t find a sign online that I liked so I made two of my own.  I made one to decorate the food table that said “Eli is One” and another for the fence with photos of the birthday boy during each month of his life.

To end the party I did personalized chocolate bars for the guests to take home and enjoy!  PurpleBerryInk designed the wrappers and I printed and wrapped the candy bars.

I had a blast planning the party and I think Eli had fun too!

 

 

Animal Crackers Bar Cake Cows Cupcake Toppers Gerbers

Water Bottles

candy bars