Pool Noodle Pony

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Hi Friends!

Summer break is in full swing over here. Sawyer has been having an absolute blast at his morning summer camps. Each day has such a fun theme (that he gets so into) and they have been making the most adorable crafts.

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When Sawyer brought home this Pool Noodle Pony I knew I had to share it with you all. How adorable is this?! And it’s so easy to make! You fold over the top of the noodle and use decorative duct tape to keep it in place. Then just glue felt on the top for the pony’s mane and two large eyes on the face.

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How perfect would this be for a Cowboy birthday party? I think I would make a bunch of them and give them to all of the kids as party favors. I’m always on the hunt for unique, inexpensive play/gift ideas. Also, it’s 100% “Sawyer Approved”–he has been playing with it in the backyard so much!

Have a wonderful week!

alison_name

“Mani Thanks” Gift Idea With Free Printable

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Hi Friends!

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

Today, I wanted to share a sweet gift idea with you. Sawyer gave these little “mini manicures” to his teachers on the last day of school. I think they make such a cute teacher gift, but they would also be adorable as a bridal or baby shower favor. They are so easy to make…just add your favorite nail polish, hand lotion, and nail file!

If you would like to extend “mani thanks” to some special ladies in your life download my free printable gift tag. I removed the wording at the bottom of the tag so you can write in any message or name that you would like.

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Have a wonderful week, friends!

alison_name

End of the School Year Bubble Gift Tags with Free Printable

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Hi Friends,

It’s officially summer over here!! Yesterday was Sawyer’s last day of preschool. I can’t believe how fast this year went by. It was truly a wonderful first experience of school for him. I couldn’t be happier! He learned so much and made such great friends.

For the last day, Sawyer wanted to give all of his friends a little treat. He picked bubbles from the store. I made these little tags to go on each bottle of bubbles. If you would like to gift some bubbles to your favorite little ones to kick off the summer, download this free printable tag!

I also can’t believe how much Sawyer grew in one school year. I’m so happy I took some first day of school pictures of him so I can compare them with his last day of school photos. Where has my little baby gone?!

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I can’t wait to see what Sawyer wants to include in the rest of his School Days Yearly Record. You can download yours, here.

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On Monday, I’ll be sharing a cute little gift that we gave Sawyer’s teachers.

Have a wonderful weekend, friends!
alison_name

3 Tips for Making Dipped Oreo Pops Easier

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Hi Friends!

This past week Sawyer celebrated his “summer birthday” at preschool. Everyone at his school is so thoughtful and kind. They didn’t want any of the children with birthdays that fall in the summer months to be left out from having the chance to celebrate their birthday at school, so each child had a special day to celebrate their “summer birthday.”

A few weeks ago, Sawyer and I spotted candy eyeballs at Target. He thought they were so funny and had been talking about what we could make with them. So when we realized that Sawyer’s special “summer birthday” was coming up we had a great reason to use those eyeballs…on his birthday celebration treat, Monster Dipped Oreo Pops!

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I’ve seen dipped Oreo pops in the past and figured they couldn’t be that difficult to make so we gave it a try. Sawyer absolutely loved the way they turned out. They weren’t extremely hard to make, but during the process, I definitely realized a few tips and tricks to make them a lot easier.

First, here is a list of supplies you will need (to make 24 Oreo pops):

2 packages of MegaStuf Oreos (You will want extras, because a lot of the Oreos break!)

2 bags of Candy Melts

Lollipop sticks

Candies for decorating the pops (I also bought these Wilton Candy Decorating Pens. But I would not recommend them. I was hopeful since it said on the box that they are made for use on candy melts, but they really did not work well at all.)

A styrofoam block to use as the dipped Oreo pops are drying upright

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 Here are my top 3 Tips for making dipped Oreo pops easier!

1. First, “unlock the magic” as the Oreo commercials used to say and take the top cookie off of the Oreo. Create a little impression in the filling using your lollipop stick. Then dip your lollipop stick in the candy melts and place it in the groove. Then put the cookie back on top. Allow this to set and it will concrete the cookie and filling together. I found that this is so helpful as you start to dip the Oreos. Before I started doing this little trick, the Oreo would fall off of the stick every time I dipped it.

2. As you are waiting for your Oreo and lollipop stick to set (tip #1), take your styrofoam block and pre-punch holes in it using another lollipop stick. Once the Oreos are dipped they become pretty heavy and if the styrofoam is not pre-punched, making the holes as you go will create a wobbly, drippy mess from your pops! Also, another tip, try to find the deepest/tallest styrofoam block you can. I wished the one I bought was even deeper since my lollipop sticks were pretty long.

3. Once you have dipped your Oreo pops let them dry completely before trying to decorate them. I think the only exception would be if you were only putting sprinkles on them. If you are decorating the pops with any other candy, due to it’s weight, definitely let them dry fully first. Then, just dip one end of an extra lollipop stick in your extra candy melts and put a small dab where you would like to add the candy. This is so much easier than trying to add the candy right away and having the eyeballs slide right off the Oreo pops, trust me!! :-)

Well, there you have it! I hope these 3 tips help you to make your Oreo pops a lot easier!

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Have a great week, friends!
alison_name

 

Thanks A Latte Teacher Appreciation Gift Idea with free printable

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Hi Friends!

Since tomorrow is Teacher Appreciation Day I just wanted to share a quick gift idea with you. As I’ve mentioned before, both Scott and my mom are teachers so I see firsthand, on a daily basis how much time, love, energy, and dedication it takes to be a teacher. Let’s celebrate all of the wonderful teachers in our lives tomorrow, and every day!!

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This is the easiest little gift, and a super cute way to dress up a gift card. When you purchase the gift card at Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, etc. just ask for an extra cup or two. Then just add some krinkle paper, a bow, and this printable tag and you are good to go! I’m including the printable tag with and without the “Happy Teacher Appreciation!” wording at the bottom. I’m also including a version that says “Have a great summer!” so you could use it as an end-of-the-year gift if you would like too!!

You can download the printable, here!

Have a great week, friends!

alison_name

Play-doh carrots

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Hi Friends!

Yesterday, I had the fun opportunity to help with the Easter party at Sawyer’s preschool. I think the kids had a great time at the celebration. We made bunny masks, ate bunny shaped Rice Krispie treats, read Easter books, and did an egg relay game.

I wanted to make a quick, inexpensive little treat for all of Sawyer’s classmates. I know this weekend will be filled with chocolate bunnies, jelly beans and other sugary deliciousness, so I wanted to stay away from candy. Sawyer loves play-doh and I am a huge fan of this flour and salt recipe. I make it all the time! I usually try to blend up different and unusual colors with the food coloring, but a batch of all orange worked perfectly for these carrots. I mixed up the dough, squeezed it into triangular candy bags that I found at Michael’s Craft Store (in the candy section) and then just tied the top with green ribbons! So easy! I think they are so adorable!

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If you are looking for a quick, last little item for those Easter baskets this weekend, give these play-doh carrots a try!

Happy Easter!

alison_name

 

Get daily texts (and a selfie) from Santa!

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!

Fall is in full swing around here. Sawyer has started his first year of preschool. The mornings are crisp and the evenings have become cooler. Some leaves have even started changing colors and falling from the trees. We will be making trips to some local farms for apple and pumpkin picking in the next few weekends too.

It’s hard to believe that Christmas is less than 3 months away! As you can see from Sawyer’s shirt, we definitely “believe in the beard” around here. So I’m super excited to share with you an adorable and fun way to celebrate with your kids during the entire month of December leading up to Christmas…with texts from Santa! The big guy in red (along with Mrs. Claus and the elves) will send a custom text message to you and your kids every day during the month of December leading up to Christmas. The personalized messages vary from festive holiday cheer, to games, to spreading goodwill (example: Do 3 nice things for someone today to help {your town} have the highest number of good kids!). As a parent, I love the spreading goodwill idea! Then on Christmas morning Santa sends a photo of himself next to your stockings or tree in your living room!! (shhh! you can submit the picture for Santa through the website) A selfie from Santa!?! How fun!!

The cost is $9.95 to receive a personalized message every day in December leading up to Christmas. Sign up right here and get into the holiday spirit!

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Also, Texts from Santa is currently running a kickstarter campaign to raise funding for even more fun features for the future. Check out their campaign here and support this awesome company!

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

 

Sawyer’s First Day of Preschool

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Hi Friends!

This fall marked a major milestone in our household…Sawyer started school!! I’m still having a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that he is even old enough to be starting school but I guess that’s a discussion for a different day. He’s in the 3 year old preschool class that meets 3 days a week and is truly loving it! Just as I had suspected, there were no tears or fears (on his end at least!) with me dropping him off on the first day. He’s only gone a few days and I can already see so much growth and change in him. He wakes up so excited for school. His curiosity and thirst for learning is truly inspiring. At drop off he always gives me a quick hug and then he’s off running to the first activity, never looking back. This is going to be an amazing year watching him grow and become even more independent.

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I originally shared my School Days Yearly Record on my dear friend Abby’s blog but in an effort to capture these fleeting days and years I just had to share it here as well. I designed and created my School Days Yearly Record as a way to see/remember (and document!!) all the ways children grow and change from the first day of school to the last day of school.

A really fun feature of this little record book is that it is completely self-contained. On the first day (or close to the first day) of school have your children fill out the five “First Day of School” pages. Then, just flip the whole book over and on the last day of school have your children fill out the “Last Day of School” pages. You can read all of the first day of school pages, left to right and then when you reach the center of the book, just flip the entire book over and read the last day of school pages, left to right, until you reach the center again. The entire year is captured in this one little book!

To make your record book, first, download the printable, here.

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If your printer is able to print double sided that would be the easiest way to quickly produce your record book. If not, no problem at all. Just print each sheet individually then glue together pages 1 and 2, 3 and 4, and 5 and 6.

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Next, stack all of the pages in the order of the printable PDF. (Page 1 should be facing down on the bottom and page 6 should be face up, on top.)  Then fold all of the pages in half and use a hole punch to make two holes for the spine of the book.

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Then just thread a ribbon through the holes and tie a bow. Now your School Days Yearly Record is complete and you and your children are ready for a wonderful school year ahead!

Have a great school year Sawyer! I am so proud of the little independent boy you are becoming. You inspire me daily and it’s an honor to be your mommy. I love you so much!

alison_name

 

A dino-mite birthday bash: Sawyer is three!

 

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Hi Friends!

It’s hard to believe that my little man turned three this summer. Three. How is that even possible?! Sawyer’s dinosaur themed 3rd birthday party was a roarin’ good time!! We celebrated the day surrounded by family, friends and neighbors. Our Sawyerosaurus is truly blessed to be loved by so many.

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We served dino-mite desserts (all of Sawyer’s favorites)! Everyone enjoyed “digging into” all of these goodies!

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Sawyer’s birthday cake was a sculpted dinosaur wearing a party hat and holding a “3” flag. Year after year, Bella Christie’s truly outdoes themselves!

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All of the kids had a blast pretending to be paleontologists and finding toy dinosaurs in the dino dig! It was a wonderful day!

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Everyone enjoyed some dino cookies for the road too!

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Happy 3rd Birthday Sawyer! You truly are our everything. We love you more than you will ever know.

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All paper goods (invitations, thank you tags, food signs, welcome sign, dino dig sign) are available in my etsy shop.

Photography by my amazing and talented friend, Jen of Rose Photography.

 

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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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