Saturday, July 31, 2010

Tiki Retirement/Birthday Party for Mom

Last weekend we celebrated my mom's retirement (and her b-day - this week) with a Tiki Party at our family place on the water. Our family is a Tiki kind of family and we spend a lot of time in the Keys, so it was a fitting way to celebrate her retirement.

My mom is an amazing mother, sister, daughter, aunt... She exudes a peace about life and a faith that I can only hope to gain someday. She is caring, giving, patient and such a great listener. She has been very successful - in the top of her field for most of my life, but still always had time to be a wonderful, supportive and present mother, mentor and friend to me. While she won't quit working forever (she has to be contributing to some type of greater good), I'm thankful that she will at least have more time to relax, regroup and enjoy whatever comes her way with less restrictions.

I got the idea for the decorations from a post on Amy Atlas's blog. Lindi, an awesome designer who you can read all about at love the day, was featured on Amy's site. She threw an amazing Luau Party for friends and designed the most darling party supplies for it. I saw it and had to have it. She even customized it to Tiki instead of Luau for me. She is great to work with! Please check her out. I will be using her services again without a doubt!

Hey, for great, low sugar strawberry lemonade (above in the punch bowl): Mix 2-3 tubs Crystal Light Lemonade and 3-5 Equal or Splenda packets (or your favorite sweetener) with 4-6 qts water (2 qts per tub). Cut the tops off about a 1 container of fresh strawberries and cut in half. Toss berries in to the lemonade and let sit overnight - I say at least 8 hours to really get the berry flavor to come through. Then either drain the old berries out, or leave them in, but add some new, fresh berries on top (frozen are great here because it helps keep the lemonade cold). Slice a lemon or two and float slices on top. YUMMY! Kids like it too and is much lower in sugar then regular lemonade. You can even add your favorite adult beverage if you're into that.

My 80 year old grandma had her first margarita at the party. I don't usually drink margaritas, but made them especially for her because she said something so funny...and so sad the last time I saw her. She said, "Before I die I want to have a margarita. I don't know why exactly...I just hear people talk about them and they sound good." So, I had to find the best margarita recipe around and give her a little taste. I'm sure she hasn't had a drink in years - and very few in her whole life. I've can't remember ever seeing her have a drink or even talk about one in my 30+ years of life. It was fun to do for this for her. She really enjoyed the drink and the experience of all her girls doing it together. The young ones drank virgin smoothies to take part in the fun.


Love that view...

Famous carrot cake recipe again...always a crowd pleaser!

Bought mom a Kindle...LOVE MINE! If you enjoy reading, it is absolutely worth the money. If you don't, you might find that you like reading more on the Kindle.

Hope you enjoyed a glimpse into our Tiki Party! It was such an awesome time spent with my very favorite people (my family). Again, it's been sort of a rough week in the photo department here. Had a knock down drag out with my editing software. Sorry for the quality for some of the pics. Hopefully we get things worked out soon!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Circus Party

Five out of 6 nieces and nephews on one side of my family were born in July, along with my hubby and sister-in-law. So, this year I combined our Deck Add On/Grand Opening Party with a great Circus Party for the July b-days. It was so much fun. Please excuse some of the pics. I resized some to send through email and accidentally saved over the originals. So, not the best quality on a few. Darn it.

I found the cutest printable Circus party supplies designed by Carli at Dimple Prints. You have to check her out! She creates really amazing and fun printable party packages. I got about 125 pages of Circus stuff for only $10.00. Can you believe that? Yes, I had to print everything myself, but that's a steal for this kind of design work.

Check out the party...

Printable banners and pennants...

The Circus Party tablescape. Signs, party hats, banners, cupcake toppers and favor bag stickers were all from DP's printable Circus Party package. I did the photo cupcake toppers, but everything else is her design.

Who doesn't love cupcakes?

C does! She loves chocolate, icing, candy...really anything made of sugar. She's aunt R's little sugar head. About half of this cupcake ending up on the floor, but that's why they make good ol' Spot Shot.

And what about this cute little vintage clown cupcake topper? This brings back memories of my childhood. Do you remember these? I found these at my local Kroger, but also found them online at Etsy by searching Vintage Clown Cupcake Toppers.

We didn't eat cupcakes before dinner, but hey, that would be OK, right:) More stuff from Dimple Prints - stickers on the cups, water bottle labels, Drinks sign.

Check out the cute little mac and cheese cupcakes. There are lots of recipes out there for these, but this one is similar to the one I used. DP designed the Food sign and the sign on the silverware bucket.
How about these silverware wrappers? Just a sticker from DP on a piece of colored paper secured with double sided tape. Oh, how I love double stick tape!

I found the hamburger trays, chip bowls, hot dog papers and pop corn holders at Hobby Lobby. If you have a HL near you and haven't checked it out - Not only do they have great crafting things, it's one of the best places for home accessories that I've found...and I've done a lot of searching.

Goodie bags - DP stickers...


Sweet little E-girl guarding her goodie bag with her life. Can you tell that she has two big brothers? She knows if she lets go - it's gone!

B-man looking so stylish in his glasses and super duper lollipop. What a doll!

All of the games came from Party City. Really affordable stuff and super cute. Got a bean bag toss, ring toss and pin the nose on the clown - all for only about $25.00.

Hope you had fun taking a peek at our Circus Party. It was a lot of fun, but most importantly it was time with family. Soon I'll post another family party...A Tiki Party on the water with amazing custom design work from love the day.

Monday, July 5, 2010

I'm Blog Crazy Lately - Copy Cat Chic

Check out Copy Cat Chic. It's a great blog by Reichel B. where she combines home design and good deals. In about every post she will showcase a high end piece like a couch, table, bed, etc. and then will show a piece that is very similar from a discount place - or that she's found on sale somewhere. Really creative and resourceful!

She also does Room Redo's where she takes an inspiration room from a magazine (or from one sent to her) and recreates it the Copy Cat Chic way - for less.

Take a look at this Room Redo example that she did for July's Better Homes and Gardens. can you believe the room total? Amazing!


1.Queen Sleigh Bed from US Mattress = $329
2.Duvet & Bedding Set from Overstock (black) = $50
3.3'6" x 5'6" Rug from CSN Rugs = $120
4.Painted Console Table from Amazon = $153
5.Blue Throw Pillows from Esty = $20
6.Glass Lamp from JCPenney's = $40
7.Lamp Shade from JCPenney's = $20
8.Wall Basket from West Elm = $29
9.Blue Vase for Flowers from Amazon = $14
10.Brass Chandelier from Overstock = $80
11.Brown Drape from Target = $25
12.Vintage Print from All Posters = $30

These photos are both from the Copy Cat Chic blog. Work is by Reichel B. of Copy Cat Chic.

Congrats to Reichel for her feature in Better Homes and Gardens. More big things to come for her I know!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Amy Atlas Events....LOVE THIS BLOG!

Ok, so I've been super out of the blogosphere lately. Not even sure if anyone reads my blog? With a busy career (that I love) I haven't had a lot of extra time. Also, I'm planning several parties for friends and loved ones and that is keeping me busy after work. I will post some great finds, and of course, pics of the awesome parties. I am working on a new direction for this blog that I will actually advertise and get out there better. Stay tuned for some fun stuff ahead.

In the meantime, you have to check out Amy Atlas Events at What an amazing artist she inspiring. Here are a couple of pics of her fabulous dessert tables. You have to go to her website too and view her gallery...AMAZING! You can find her at

Both of these photos are from Both tables were designed by Amy Atlas Events. Go to her inspired!