A guest post…a welcome…and a giveaway!!!

Hi Friends!

I am so excited to share that today I am guest posting over at Just a Girl and Her Blog as Abby is recovering from her surgery. I am sharing this fun School Days Yearly Record free printable! Be sure to head over there and check it out!

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If you are visiting from Just a Girl and Her Blog, welcome and hello! I’m so happy that you are here. Thanks so much for stopping by! For those of you who may not know me very well, my name is Alison and I’m a wife, mother and graphic designer. My family is my whole world. I strive to live a faith-filled life focused on loving my family well.

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Two other aspects of life that I am extremely passionate about are celebrations/parties and motherhood. I believe in celebrating all of life’s amazing moments. Because at the end of the day, it is these moments that are what life is truly about. Not only do I love throwing parties but I also love designing invitations and party decor to help make any celebration in your life even more special. You can find my designs on cardstore.com and minted.com as well as in my own shop. I also love sharing free printables so be sure to take a look around this blog!

Motherhood is another aspect of life that is so very important to me. Being a mom is a tough job, but also an incredible one! As mothers, I believe we should take every opportunity that we can to support and encourage one another. My very dear friend, Natalie started a monthly care package service for moms that is focused on celebrating motherhood, Happy Mommy Box. Together with her business partner, Mandy, they have been doing a wonderful job of inspiring and encouraging moms all over the country. Several months ago I started working with them as a Brand Outreach team member. I just love being a part of the team as we deliver encouragement to all of our mom’s doorsteps each month!

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Also, here are a few of my recent projects to get you started…

WoodlandAnimals_graphic3Woodland Animal Party Invitation with Free Thank You Note Printable

 

IMG_1477-685Chick and Bunny Candy Boxes with Free Printable

 

berry_boxesBerry Favor Box Free Printable

 

YOLO_685-2Once Is Enough Art Print – Free Printable

 

Phew! That was a much longer introduction than I thought it would be!!

And now for a GIVEAWAY…now who doesn’t like a giveaway?! This is a fun one! Enter below to win a custom design of your choice! I’ll work directly with the winner to design a free project of your choice…party invitations, thank you notes, bunting banner…you pick! You just tell me what you’re looking for and I’ll help to make your celebration shine!! How fun is that?!? I’m so excited about it. I hope you are too! Good luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

**The (not so) fine print… This giveaway is for the design file only. No printed cards/invitations/materials are included. Also, this giveaway includes only 1 round of design revisions after the initial design is created. Also, if you are the winner I reserve the right to share your completed design in a separate blog post and/or on my social media channels.

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Instagrahams!

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Hi Friends!

To continue the milk and cookies party one day longer I just had to share these adorable “instagrahams” that Sawyer received for his birthday. Aren’t these just the cutest, most clever cookies you have ever seen!?! They are made by Baking For Good, an online bakery that supports great causes. Not only do their cookies taste so good, they are truly doing so much good for the rest of the world. 15% of all net proceeds go to a cause that you choose.

They will print your instagram photos onto their cookies, creating “instagrahams.” All edible, all completely delicious, shipped directly to your door!

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Sawyer just couldn’t get over seeing his own face on the cookies! He loved them!

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The next time you are looking for a unique, sweet gift, give Baking for Good a try. You won’t be dissappointed!

Have a wonderful weekend!

alison_name

Milk and Cookies Birthday Party: Sawyer is Two!

This post uses affiliate links. However, all opinions are 100% own. For more information, read about my disclosures, here.
 
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Hi Friends!

There has been a lot of celebrating going on around here recently. Last week Scott and I celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary, and over the weekend Sawyer turned 2!! I still cannot believe that my little baby is 2 already. Where did the time go?!?! He had a wonderful birthday celebration over the weekend full of family and friends.

I love theming Sawyer’s birthday parties to his current favorite things. Last year, for his first birthday, he had a Very Hungry Caterpillar party, his favorite book at the time. So this year, we focused on two of Sawyer’s favorite foods…milk and cookies!! I had such a blast planning and designing all of the details for Sawyer’s celebration!

Below is Sawyer’s big day in photos…

IMG_2192_685Suspenders and bow tie from Howell’s Haberdashery

invitations1_685From the moment we decided on the Milk and Cookies theme, I just knew his invitation needed to incorporate a cookie being dunked in milk. I designed the front and back of the invitation to have a large chocolate chip cookie splashing into milk. Then to create the glass, I found aqua transparent paper at Michaels Craft Store.  I was able to make two “glasses” out of each 8.5 x 11 sheet of the paper. I just cut each sheet in half and folded it around the invitation, gluing it together at the left side with double sided tape. Then lastly to add depth and to make the glass look more realistic, I cut a subtle scoop in the front.

The invitation is available in my etsy shop right, here.

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FrontDoor1_685I designed the welcome sign for the center of the door to have a cohesive look and feel with the invitation and other elements of the party. Then I surrounded it with cookies and paper rosettes that I folded and glued together. At the top of the door I added 3 simple, tissue paper tassels.

The welcome sign is available in my etsy shop right, here.

IMG_2472_685The cake was made by the amazing Kristin of  Bella Christie & Lil’ Z’s Sweet Boutique. She did such a fantastic job! Kristin was so easy to work with and her cakes taste just as incredible as they look!!

IMG_2299_685All cookie signs and milk bottle labels are also available in my etsy shop right, here.

bottles_685*Fun Tip: Starbucks Frappuccino bottles make perfect glass milk bottles! I bought two cases and Scott and I drank them for about a month leading up to the party! haha! After we finished all of the Frappuccinos, I peeled off the labels and used Goof Off to wipe away the sticky residue. Then I thoroughly washed and dried all of the bottles and then wrapped my new label around each one. They were so easy to make and I really loved the results!

IMG_2315_685The birthday boy caught red handed stealing way too many candies!

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IMG_2312_685Above our bay window I hung a Happy Birthday Sawyer banner and on the sides of the windows I hung more cookies and paper rosettes. I used Dap Adhesive Putty to hang all of the cookies and rosettes. The puddy was stronger than I thought it would be and everything stayed on the walls for the entire party.

IMG_2307_685As for the favors, each guest took home a cookie and a milk carton full of candy. I had such a fun time designing the milk carton and making it personalized to Sawyer.

The thank you cookie tags and milk cartons are available in my etsy shop, here.

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I also wanted to incorporate a photo collage of Sawyer into his party decorations in some way, so I designed this giant 2 that hung on the wall. It was 3.5 feet tall and included more than 35 photos!

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On the tables outside, where everyone ate dinner, I wanted the centerpieces to be unique but very simple. I decided to reuse the twos from the table number forms from my wedding and switch them up a bit. Instead of wheatgrass, I filled them with small white pebbles and a variety of succulents and cactuses.

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The birthday boy enjoying some milk!

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IMG_2510_685Dream big, little one…and make a wish!! Happy Birthday!

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Happy 2nd Birthday Sawyer! You are my sunshine and greatest joy! I love you to the moon and back little one.

alison_name

 

 

I link up at these fun parties!

This post uses affiliate links. However, all opinions are 100% own. For more information, read about my disclosures, here.

Gender Reveal Bee – with free Printable

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Hi Friends! Happy Friday!

I just love the idea of gender reveal parties. I think it’s such a fun way to celebrate your little bundle-of-joy-on-the-way. With my son, Sawyer, we had our sonogram technician write down the gender and seal it in an envelope. The following weekend, we took the envelope to a local bakery and had them bake a cake with pink or blue icing in the middle. Then we threw a little celebration in our home with our family and friends. It was so fun and special to be surrounded by our closest loved ones when we cut into the cake and all found out together that our little boy was on the way!

So, yes. I’m a fan of gender reveal parties. And recently I’ve seen so many fun, creative ways to reveal your baby’s gender. Frosting in cakes, releasing balloons…I even saw an adorable idea of a best friend painting her friend’s nursery pink or blue and then surprising the parents-to-be. So cute!

Well, today I’d love to share a fun paper craft gender reveal bee with you. Recently I added a sweet Gender Reveal Bee Invitation to my etsy shop. You can find it, here. As I was working on it, I started thinking that it would be such a cute idea to make paper craft bees for each guest filled with either pink or blue candy. Then when it’s time to reveal the baby’s gender, everyone can just tear open their bee and see!!

Below are step-by-step instructions:

To start, first we have to make the pom pom head of the bee. Of course you can always buy a pom pom from any craft store but I always like the look of yarn pom poms. Also, they are so easy to make. Just start by winding yarn around 2 or 3 of your fingers. The more layers of yarn you wind the fuller your pom pom will be. I think I wound this one 25-30 times.

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Then, simply slide your fingers out. In the hole that your fingers left, slide another piece of yarn through and tie a knot. Then slide a pair of scissors through the hole and cut the loop of all of the pieces of yarn. Then trim the edges of the yarn and fluff into a pom pom.

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Now that our pom pom head is created. Next, download and print the bee template. For best results, print on a thicker cardstock paper. Then cut out the bee shape and hole punch in the rounded ends (indicated on template).

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Next, fold on dotted lines (also indicated on template) and glue the tab to attach to other side of bee. Now you are ready to fill your bee with pink or blue treats!! Once your bee is filled, thread a piece of yarn through the holes and pull together to close the top of the bee body.

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Lastly glue on the pom pom head and attach antenna and wings if you would like. For the antenna I used a black pipe cleaner and for the wings I used light blue sheer (somewhat transparent) paper that I found at Michael’s Craft Store.

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That’s it! Your bee is now complete! How adorable are they?!?!

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Happy crafting!

alison_name

 

I link up at these fun parties!

 

 

Woodland Animals Party In A Post with Free Thank You Note Printable

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Hi, Friends!

I have recently been hard at work designing some new fun invitations and party decor. I can’t wait to share all of my latest and greatest designs with you!

To start off, I just launched my new Woodland Animals invitation in my etsy shop. It can be customized with any wording and color palette, so it is perfect for a baby shower or birthday celebration!

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Today, I want to share the matching thank you note with you as a free printable! You can download it right here. For best results, print on a thicker cardstock paper. Then just trim on the crop marks and fold on the line indicated in the PDF. So easy! Enjoy! :-)

Also, below is a collection of adorable Woodland Animals Party inspiration and ideas to make your celebration an even bigger hit! I have included all of the direct links below the photos.

Print1. Adorable Chalkboard Wooden Sign  2. Party “Marshrooms”  3. Breadstick Snails
4. Woodland Owl Tablescape  5. Acme Craft Kit  6. Woodland Animals Felt Masks

You can also check out my Woodland Animals Pinterest board for even more ideas. Happy party planning!!

 

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I link up at these fun parties!

Mother’s Day Gift Idea: Banana Bread Recipe and Free Printable

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Happy Tuesday, friends! Mother’s Day is this Sunday. So today, I want to share a simple and thoughtful gift idea with you—an easy and delicious banana bread recipe as well as a cute Mother’s Day printable to gift your bread in style. I am a strong believer in the old saying “it’s the thought that counts.” Sometimes the most thoughtful gifts cost hardly anything monetarily. Sometimes a sweet handwritten note, a ‘thinking of you’ phone call or a conversation over a cup of coffee can be the best gift of all…or a loaf of banana bread baked with love! ;-)

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Here is the recipe…

Easy (and delicious) Banana Bread

1 box yellow cake mix
1 package Jello Instant Banana Cream Pudding & Pie Filling
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 ripe bananas
4 eggs
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
Brown sugar and cinnamon to taste

Mix all the ingredients together well. Pour into 2 large or 4 small loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes. Enjoy! (I told you it was easy!)

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Download my Mother’s Day printables here.  Both the wrap-around banner and round tags are included in the PDF.

Now go get baking…I’m sure you know a lot of special moms that should be celebrated this weekend!

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Berry Favor Boxes with Free Printable

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Tomorrow is the first day of May! I am officially in spring mode around here. Bring on the sunshine and warm weather! Last week I shared two delicious and easy berry desserts with you. To continue with the berry theme, today I have an adorable berry favor box tutorial and free printable for you. Between the desserts and favor boxes I think we’re pretty much ready for a spring backyard BBQ and strawberry fest!! Yayy!! Also, these little favor boxes are really versatile. If you don’t fill them with candy or sweets, you can string a few together and they easily become an adorable garland to make your party even more festive. Or you could put one at each place setting (with or without candy inside) with each guests name written on the leaves to create a unique name card! How fun!

Below are the step-by-step instructions and free printable:

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First, download and print the printable at the bottom of this post. For best results, print on thicker cardstock paper. Then, trim out the strawberry and leaves.

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Next, fold long all of the dotted lines and use a hold punch to make the holes indicated on the print.

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Next, fill the berry with any candy or treats you would like. Then, string a piece of ribbon or yarn through the holes pulling the top portion of the berry together.

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Lastly, thread the ribbon or yarn through the hole in the leaves and tie a bow. That’s it! So easy! Aren’t they adorable!!

In the printable PDF I have also included a few different messages on the leaves…Thank you, You’re Sweet and a blank option. Also, I’m including a version without the dotted guide lines for folding if you would prefer to make your berries without the guides. Download the free printable here. Have fun!!

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Also, don’t forget, there is still time to enter our Twice As Nice Mother’s Day giveaway. Enter here! Good luck!!

alison_name

 

 

 

I link up at these fun parties!

 

 

Twice As Nice Mother’s Day Giveaway

Giveaway_header2Hi Friends! Happy Friday!

Can you believe it’s almost May? I seriously cannot wait for the sunshine, flowers and warmer weather of May! Sawyer lives to be outside and I’m so excited for all of the outside fun I’m sure we’ll get into. May also means that Mother’s Day is almost upon us. I love Mother’s Day! Motherhood really is the toughest job and I love that we have a day dedicated to celebrating mothers. Not to mention, I also love being spoiled by my sweet Sawyer! ;-) Also, Mother’s Day gives me an extra-special opportunity to celebrate and thank my mom, who has given me so much, taught me so much, and helped me so, so much throughout my life. I always struggle, though, with finding the perfect gift for her—what do you give to the woman who has given you everything?!

Welllllll, we’re hoping that today’s giveaway can help with that! And what could be better than finding that one perfect gift for mom? Answer: Finding that one perfect gift for mom AND getting to keep one for yourself!

That’s TWO beautiful gifts from an Etsy shop owned by TWO sisters and hosted by TWO blogs!
It’s twice as nice  all around!

I’m teaming up with my friend Abby of Just a Girl and Her Blog to bring you this giveaway from The Amateur Naturalist, an Etsy shop owned by two sisters who create beautiful terrarium designs that are sent as a kit—you receive all of the pieces you need as well as detailed instructions on how to put it together to create a terrarium just like theirs.

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So why is this the perfect Mother’s Day gift?

  • It’s personal. You can choose to follow their instructions exactly or make it your own by adding your own elements as well. You get all the benefits of a handmade gift with the simplicity of an all-in-one kit!
  • You can make a memory. If you choose to give the terrarium as a kit, mom and child can have a blast building it together, and since it will last a loooooong time, they’ll have a fun reminder of their experience for years to come.
  • It’s low maintenance. People like me who have a black thumb can incorporate natural elements into their home decor without worrying about killing them. Just sayin’. :)
  • It’s completely unique and completely gorgeous!!!

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The lovely girls at The Amateur Naturalist are giving one Just Add Confetti or Just a Girl and Her Blog reader their choice of any TWO medium terrarium kits from their shop! And if you don’t win, you can still order your kits any time before May 5th to receive them in time for Mother’s Day! (While you’re perusing the shop, be sure to check out their kids’ kits too—they make great activities for rainy days or favors for birthday parties!) All you have to do to enter is follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter below, so have at it!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you want to know more about The Amateur Naturalist, visit their Etsy shop, check out their blog, or follow them on Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter! Thanks so much for entering! Have a wonderful weekend!

alison_name

 

 

 

*The Amateur Naturalist is providing the prize for this giveaway. All opinions are my own. For more information, see my disclosures here.*

“Berry” delicious desserts

Hi Friends! Happy Wednesday!

This past weekend, over the Easter holiday, aside from eating our weight in chocolate bunnies and peeps we also enjoyed two delicious berry desserts. They were so tasty that I just have to share them with you! Below are the recipes. They are both so fresh and perfect for spring. Oh, and did I mention that they are both super easy?! That is always a must in my book! Enjoy!

berry_collageAngel Lush with Pineapple Cake

1 can (20 oz.) crushed pineapple, undrained
1 package (3.4 oz.) Vanilla flavor Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
1 cup thawed Cool Whip Whipped Topping
1 package (10 oz.) round angel food cake, cut into 3 layers
Seasonal berries

Mix pineapple and dry pudding mix in medium bowl. Gently stir in whipped topping.  Stack cake layers on plate, spreading pudding mixture between layers and on top of cake. Refrigerate 1 hour or until ready to serve. Garnish with your favorite seasonal berries. Makes 10 servings.

 

Decadent Mousse

1 jar Lemon or any flavor of Crème Curd
1 c. whipping cream
1 8-oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 c. fresh mixed berries
Mint leaves (optional)

In a mixing bowl, beat whipping cream until stiff peaks form. In a separate bowl, stir together cream cheese and curd until smooth. Stir curd mixture into whipped cream until blended. Divide mousse into 6 tall stemmed glasses. Divide berries between glasses and garnish with mint. Refrigerate until serving. Makes 6 servings.

 

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Easter 2014

Happy Easter! We had the most wonderful weekend spent with family and friends. I think Sawyer was on a 3-day sugar rush! I couldn’t resist snapping these photos of my little man in his Sunday’s best!

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I hope you all had a fantastic Easter holiday with the ones you love!

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