Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Sweet Niece #2 turns One!

This weekend my Sweet Niece #2 turned ONE!  We had festivities to celebrate this important milestone in her life, with lots of icing (of course!)

We had family and friends - especially the Prayer Peeps - here to celebrate Macy's birthday.  Mom and I, with much help from Dad, Aliah and Katie, set up a canopy in the yard and decorated in lots of pink and green!  Tissue balls, balloons, streamers, and cute bunnies! Loved it.

We found tin tubs at the dollar store and wrote each kids name on it as their goodie bag.  Inside we had bunny bags from the clearance bin after Easter with a Bible board book (dollar store - 2 for a buck), bubbles (left over from wedding), stickers (dollar store, 6 packs for a buck), and a washcloth that will expand full-sized in water (dollar store).  The older girls got extras like flower erasers, hangman notepads and colored pens. 

My sister made the smash cake from cutouts from a sheet cake and stacked it up for height.  Then she added tons of icing to make sure it was extra messy!

Pinned it, Did it! We used small plastic cups to hold the "rabbit food," carrots and celery sticks with ranch dressing in the bottom.  No more ranch on the cookies and watermelon! It's all contained and neat. Yum! Mom made these delicious cookies. The veggie sandwiches were cut in hearts and flowers with wheat on one side and white on the other.  

Another Pinned it, Did it! The cupcake liner wreath and handmade bunny ornaments for the adults. The goodie bags helped decorate with the cupcakes and smash cake.

The Birthday Banner.  Scrapbook paper glued to cardstock backers and I simply stapled the ribbon to the front. I was out of energy at that point - and you know what, no one noticed. The letters came from a banner from Party City that was on clearance.  We didn't use the banner, just the stickers.

The canopy was six-sided and green (I know it looks black) and we found these green tissue balls at Hobby Lobby - three for $7 or so.  The colored honeycomb balls came in a large package of decor items from Party City for a one-year-old birthday and they were about 70% off!! We used a metal wreath form tied from the top to connect all the streamers in the center.  A cluster of balloons were on each leg.  It was very cute and girlie. :)

The most popular place was the ball pit we made.  Sweet Niece's parents gave her a sandbox for her birthday and we put balls in it from Toys R Us.  The baby jail held the quilt down to keep things clean and contained the balls from rolling all over the yard.

Time to open presents!! She was interested for a while, then was done with that.  

Sweet Niece and my brother and sister-in-law.  Isn't this a great photo?? They are a cute couple. :)

Sweet Niece #1 popping out of the box.  We wrapped large boxes for the kids to climb through like tunnels - a hit! One was a cave (only one end was open) and the other a tunnel. They were so proud of themselves when they crawled all the way through!

PawPaw and his grandbabies

Aunt Donna and the birthday baby!

One exhausted birthday girl at the end of her party.  

And one more cake picture because she was loving it!

This party was so special to our family.  My sister had a difficult pregnancy with several issues and so many people were praying her through it.  Then when Sweet Niece made her appearance several weeks early, there were still issues and our family and friends were there, praying both of them through it.  These people are so wonderful and dedicated to prayer and support. Thanks so much to everyone who went through it with us all! :)  We love you!  

Monday, June 17, 2013

Muffin Monday - The Last Hurrah

Well folks, I'm afraid this will be the last Muffin Monday.  She has never overcome her issues and still isn't eating.  Instead of watching her suffer as she continues to not eat, I've decided to put her down this week.  It's a tough decision, as you can imagine, but my vet has been wonderful through it all and respects my decision. My family has also be so supportive, knowing this has been my buddy for the past 13 years and is a very loved member of my household.

A sad posting, but I'm also relieved that she won't be in pain or struggling anymore. Such a tough decision.  *sigh* Such a rough decision.  But I truly feel it's the right decision.

So a lady came into the office this morning to work here for the first time. She'll be here for a week and we've never met.  Don't you know I totally lose it as I'm trying to email the vet and she walks in about that time? Yeah, that's my luck.  But she was so understanding since she had to put her dog down a few weeks ago, so we are now two peas in a pod. And then her daughter just texted that she's at the vet with her dog, which may also have to be put to sleep.  Sheesh!  We are all basket cases over here!

I'll post pictures from Macy's birthday party later today or tomorrow.  I'd appreciate your happy vibes sent my way to pull me through this! Many thanks!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Magic Bullet Bliss?

Dad gave me a Magic Bullet last night. You know, those things that are advertised on TV as being the answer to your culinary dreams?  Yeah, that one.

He's had it forever at his house and told me to take it home, but the color coded rims on the mugs were just so freakin' cheesy, I resisted.  Last night, I finally brought it home, mainly because I want to try my hand at smoothies.  I've gotten so many berries from my Community Support Agriculture box that I have a freezer full.

Yes, this sucker comes with a recipe book, but you know me better than that and you KNOW I had to look online for a million recipes.  How cool is it that I found THIS: A blog dedicated to Magic Bullet Recipes! No way, right? WAY!! All kinds of crazy and hopefully tasty recipes for the Magic Bullet!

I'm hoping this is something I'll use frequently for healthier alternatives to my weekly menus.  Living alone, it's tough to make something just for one.  Maybe this will help? I'll let you know.

Do you have any suggestions for 1) recipes for one or 2) recipes for this new toy of mine? Lemme know, please!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Monday Monday - Update

Muffin had a rough weekend. She's sick of me squirting medicine down her throat... well, she actually runs through the house spitting it out all over my floors. *sigh* Yeah, I'm in serious need of a mop job.  You know she's sick when she turns down tuna. Say a little pray for her, please?

The rest of my weekend, when I wasn't torturing the cat with medicine, involved visits to the hospital to see a coworker's husband, visiting with my friend, Donna, over dinner and catching Sweet Niece #1's dance recital.  She's growing up so fast!  Not only did she have a GREAT recital, but earlier in the month she earned her yellow belt in tae kwon do!  She's multi-talented! Go AH!

I almost didn't recognize her when she came up to us because she had her braces removed and got contacts within a week of each other.  So she's changed a bit!  We are so proud of her. She's really artistic, too, so she's got mad skillz! 

Ya'll have a great week and you know I'll keep you posted on Muffin.  :)  Thanks!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Friday's Letters.

Dear Friday, I thought it was Saturday on Wednesday. So for the love of heaven, please be nice to me because obviously this has been a long week.

Dear co-worker peeps, Thanks for going along with the mouse ears, just to be silly for A.  We are really happy for you, A, A, A, & A, that you are heading to Disney World! I hope you have a GREAT time!

Dear Sweet Niece #2, I know teething is driving you insane and I'm sorry. But that doesn't make it OK to throw blocks around the house. Tsk Tsk. You are supposed to be a SWEET niece, remember?  Did you know one year ago (this week) your mama fell down the steps with you in her belly? Yup. She was so scared - ended up breaking her foot. Then you were born one week later!! :) Almost one, baby girl!

Dear Muffin, girl, not only are you putting me in the poor house with vet bills, but you made me cry all day Monday I was so worried about you. I'm glad you are feeling better. Let's work on not spitting your medicine out all over my house, OK? Thanks.

Dear Self, sunscreen is your friend. Especially when you are super sugar white. Maybe you'll remember next time. :)

Dear Sweet Niece #1, Look at you! All grown up, got your braces off and I hear you got contacts this week, too! WHAT! And you'll be heading into SIXTH GRADE! *sigh* I thought growing up wasn't allowed! I'm very proud of you (congrats on your Yellow Belt, too!)

Dear next three weeks, you are SO BUSY, calendar, and I'm thankful for all the great events coming up.  I sincerely hope my body will recognize the need for sleep to survive it all! :)

Go link up with Ashley and enjoy other folks' letters! Fun stuff! :)


Monday, June 3, 2013

Muffin Monday - Sick Kitten

This is a repeat picture, I know, but my sweet kitten isn't feeling well. She's been to the vet this morning, which is tramatic enough, had xrays, bloodwork, steriods, ... she's not feelint well at all. I'm hoping she's at home resting and the steriods will make her feel better.  Blow her a sweet kitty kiss for get well wishes, please.  She's my only baby... :(

Photo Flower Pot Tutorial

Ya'll know I don't usually do tutorials, but this project came out so stinkin' cute, I had to share it. I found the original idea on Pintrest (Pinned It, Did It!) but never found great directions. Here are the directions for an adorable photo flower pot.

What you will need (or what I used):
Newspaper or something to avoid a major mess
Terracotta Flower Pots (I used 6" pots, I think)
Mod Podge
White Acrylic Paint
Foam Brushes
Access to a laser printer or copier - NO INK JET

Ribbon, Buttons - your choice of stuff for the lip
Oil Diffuser Ring
Hot Glue
Super Glue

Ok, I think that will get you ready for cuteness. I did this at work it's so easy, so pretend like you don't see my work desk in these pictures, ok?

I first painted the clay pots white. You don't have to, I just liked the look of it better.  I used a foam brush and wasn't careful because it will mostly be covered up with pictures and ribbon. It dried super quick. 

I didn't paint all the way inside because you'll be adding a flower later.  I chose to include the base of the flower pots, too, but that is optional. 

I used Publisher to make up plenty of pictures for the pots. I think my pots were 6" and it took 15 pictures to cover pretty well. I did use two different sizes - a smaller (2" x 2") and larger size (2.4" x 2.4"). I also learned to leave a bit of "dead space" in the pictures and not fill the frames up with faces BECAUSE you'll need to overlap a bit.

I printed on a laser printer with regular copy paper and worried they would streak when I applied the glue, but they didn't.  I do not believe an ink jet printer will work on this.

I also learned by the second one to lay out the design to see if you'll be covering up people's faces or not. Or to make sure the kids are scattered all the way around and not just in one spot.

Grab your Mod Podge and smear some on the pot with another foam brush. Take a photo and press it into the glue, smoothing it out as you go with your fingers. Keep doing this until everything is covered.  I did have some white gaps showing the painted pot at the top, no biggie. Just keep smoothing as you go. I did end up with a few wrinkles, but it wasn't very noticable. The copy paper is very thin, but I think anything thicker might not adhere as easily?? Thoughts on this - please share.

Once you are totally covered, smear Mod Podge all over the outside using your foam brush.  It dries clear so no worries! (I had never used it and it was SO EASY!) I do recommend keeping it going in one direction because you will see brush strokes in certain lights.

See, it's clear! I must have done 4 coats or more, letting each one dry before adding another to it. I wanted a good solid coating before I gifted it. 

After they dried I used super glue to adhere ribbon around the top lip for decor. Hot glue seems to leave ridges and super glue doesn't.  Understand, it will NOT lay flat all the way around because the edges are tapered. To get bubbles at the bottom edge of the ribbon out, I made a little snip with scissors right in the middle of the bubble, overlapped and glued down the two sides and it removed the bubbles. I hot glued buttons and bows to add some color to all this black/white scheme! And thankfully, I found flowers that fit perfect into the pots with liners!!

Optional addition:  because I was planning to use live flowers that would require water, I decided to add an oil diffuser ring to the bottom so the bottom of the pots wouldn't be standing in water.  I hot glue those on, too. Anything would work - like a shower ring, I would think. But those only added a dollar to the overall cost. I thought they turned out so cute - the diffusers are almost like a little pedestal for the pots. :)

Tell me what you think! I'm sharing this on Pintrest, too. And please share your pictures if you decide to do it!! I'd love to see how yours turn out. It's awesome to see everyone's take on it, you know? So please share!! :) 

Mom with her gift

My sister with her gift

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