Saturday, April 28, 2012

{Real Party} Let's Roller Skate - Grace is 8!

It sounds cliche to say, but I really cannot believe that my baby girl turned 8 today!  It really does seem like yesterday laying in that hospital bed, staring down at this little thing in my arms with bright red lips, porcelain white skin, and a full head of dark hair.  That little girl never lost that beautiful dark hair, has lots of freckles dotting that porcelain skin and is just as beautiful today as she was 8 years ago - inside and out!

Because Grace's 1st Communion was a week prior to her birthday (here, here, and here), we decided not to do the all out extravaganza at the house for her birthday party this year.  {Insert tear...}  I think Grace was somewhat relieved she got to have a "normal" party like all of her friends - not at our house, in the garage with her mom losing her mind because the background to the sweets table is not how she imagined it! 

Grace's newest love is roller skating, correction, roller blading.  She decided she would have her friends to the roller skating arena for a roller skate party.  At the end of the day, a party without the 6 months planning (most of this was done this week prior to the party) ended up being a lot of fun for Grace and her friends.  Tonight as I tucked her into bed, she told me it was a great party, but her Prom Party and Hannah Montana/High School Musical Party were still her favorites.  That made my heart smile :)

So, here is what a scaled down party looks like from me.  I worked with Carli at Dimple Prints again for the printables.  They were adorable and perfectly Grace!

I made this wreath out of zebra print cupcake liners.  SO easy.  I used about 150 cupcake liners to fill in a 12 inch wreath form.  I think I found my new go to party decor!

I love paper fans.  They are SO easy to make and so inexpensive.  This was the first time I tried using wrapping paper to make them.  They are not as sturdy as using scrapbook paper, but the nice thing was the ability to make them as large as needed.

Only cake and ice cream at today's party :(  I still found a way to use the adorable printables.

In planning this party, I originally was on the hunt for real roller skates I could spray paint for a table centerpiece.  I didn't have much luck finding them, but my good friend Jen found these skates at TJ Maxx.  They are piggy banks!  They came purple.  I spray painted them with black chalkboard paint so that the girls could sign them for Grace as a memento from the party.  The spray paint crackled a bit, but they still turned out cute.  I added the coordinating ribbon to the top for a little extra touch.


My good friend Jean made the favors.  They are no slip reversible headbands.  She is such a talented seamstress (and a mother to triplets and an adorable boy).  I love being able to utilize my friends' talents!!!

My party limitations end at cake baking, decorating, etc.  The baker I usually use for parties was unavailable for this party.  (Editorial - her name is also Melissa and her adorable son is in Grace's class and she happens to make fabulous GF cakes!)  She found the fondant toppers for me from Sugar Kisses on Etsy.  I attempted to make my own cake.  I think I'll stick to party planning :)

It was a great party.  I even learned a few lessons - (1) It's okay to not go over the top on parties.  8 year old girls just want to hang out with their girlfriends and do things 8 year old girls have always loved to do; (2) Parties CAN be planned last minute; and (3) DIY is just as good, if not better than having a professional look :)

After two parties in two weeks, I am burned out!  Add in a 50-60 hour per week job and running, running, running with the kids, it's hard not to be exhausted.  But as every mom knows, it is all worth it when you see the smile on their faces :)  Thanks for looking :)

Shabby Chic First Communion/8th Birthday - Sweets Table

The last of the features from Grace's 1st Communion / 8th Birthday Party is our sweets table.  This table was so fun to put together and was done on a budget, using things I've owned and making most of the treats myself.  I just want to add an editorial here...  I know that labeling food items is yesterday's trend.  However, in our family, (including me) we have several Celiacs.  For us, labeling food items is not whether it is on trend, but necessary to avoid food issues.  Hence, my table has labels :)  (And I think they are pretty cute anyway!)

All printables are from Carli at Dimple Prints.  I love, love, love them!

For a DIY tutorial on the backdrop, see here.

I found these pink trays at the Target Dollar Spot.  I used my Silhouette to create the quatrefoil design out of vinyl and then applied it to the front of the trays.  I attached a lace flower to the label.

Kim from Sweeties by Kim graciously made gluten free chocolate covered Oreos for us!  They were wonderful!

The cake pop containers were Easter decorations I found at Kohl's on clearance :)  I simply covered up the bunny on top with a lace flower and covered the bunny on the face of the container with a label.  They fit the cake pops perfectly!

This is my attempt at a cake...  Needless to say the professionals do a much better job!  Grace decided she wanted a Dairy Queen cake.  Seeing as how I couldn't plop a ice cream cake in the middle of a sweets table and that some of our family does not like ice cream cake, I made a chocolate cake.  It tasted better than it looked :)

Happy First Communion Grace!  It was a beautiful day!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Shabby Chic First Communion/8th Birthday - Decorations

If you've looked at any of my blog posts, you will notice that they are picture overloads.  This one is no different!  I think as a DIY / Mom Party Planner, you take extra pride in the work that you do to pull together a special event for your child.  So naturally, it is easy to want to show every last picture, including every angle since one of your projects may look a smidge different at a different angle.  And how knows, your most recent party may get you on some famous party blog (I can always dream, can't I...  Some day!)  And, as a Mom, with no photographic training, my ISO or my Aperture number may be better in one picture versus the other.  Some day, when I have time, I'll take a photography class :)

So, here is a picture overload post of the decorations from Grace's First Communion/8th Birthday party.  Again, the printables are from Carli at Dimple Prints.  All of the other elements, I put together.

So what was your favorite part of the decor?  Mine was the "Blessings for Grace."  Family members were asked to fill out a blessing for Grace for her to keep in her keepsakes to remember the day.  I hope she looks back on the day with as special memories as I will.  Thanks for looking.  Up next, the sweets table :)