crafty, kids, printables

“No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed” Birthday Party

Yes, it’s a mouthful.

I know.

It’s not the shortest birthday party theme in history, but it’s cute, right?

I found this canvas art at Home Goods a few months ago and bought it to go in my boys’ playroom. As I was deciding what to do for my one year old’s party, I saw the art propped up against the wall (that’s how I throw hints to my husband that I want something hung) and thought it would be great decor for the party.



I used the colors from the art: red, blue and yellow. I cut out simple monkeys using my Silhouetted SD and hung them on the wall with a simple pennant banner. I was focused on keeping it simple, because we have only been living in this house 3 weeks, so my birthday party crafting time was limited.



We have a huge family and it costs a bundle to do a full meal, so we went with just cake and ice cream.

I made my standby Double Chocolate Chip Cupcakes (from Our Family Favorites), but iced them with a banana cream cheese frosting. My tip for this kind of frosting – it won’t be pretty. The banana turns the frosting into a kind of goopy, ugliness, but it tastes delicious. Stick with real bananas, not some weird artificial banana flavoring…grody.  Add a little yellow gel coloring and it looks and tastes great.

We also had a banana split bar (get it…bananas?). I pre-dished vanilla ice cream into plastic cups before the party and kept them in the freezer. Then I just let everyone go wild making their banana splits – bananas, hot fudge, chocolate syrup, strawberry syrup, pineapple, nuts, whipped cream and cherries. It was a big hit and took very little work. To doll it up, I covered up the commercial labels with scrapbooking paper and labels I designed so that everything would match the theme.

For drinks, I just made up my own punch out of blue hawaiian punch, lemonade and club soda – it makes a pretty blue color and tastes yummy.



Since it was just a one-year-old’s party, I didn’t plan any games. The only activity we really had was a board for voting if Pax looks more like me or his daddy (inspired by Pinterest).

I got a photo of each of us at the age of one and put them on a white board for everyone to mark their vote. My hubby won by a landslide…and seeing the pics next to each other I had to agree. He looks like his Daddy!

Happy Birthday to our lil’ monkey – Pax!


Enjoy these Banana Split Bar printables you can use for your next party –

Banana Split food labels

Banana Split Bar sign

crafty, kids, printables

“Zander be 3” – A pirate-themed 3rd birthday!

As evidence of how far behind I am on blogging…this party happened in November and I am just getting to blogging about it!

First of all, I love planning Zander’s birthday parties. You can see his first birthday (a Dr. Seuss party) and his second birthday (a car-themed party) in my previous posts.

As I picked the theme for this year’s party, I tried to find something I knew Zander would love. He loves the movie “Peter Pan,” but I’m not the hugest fan of doing a cartoon-themed party, so we went with a general pirate theme.

I didn’t want it to get too dark or scary, so we stuck with really fun colors and cute pirate decorations.We had also just moved back to the States two weeks before his birthday, so I had plan quick and cheap.


We did a mid-morning party because that is when Zander is at his happiest. Because of this, we didn’t need to serve a full meal, so we did brunch-y snacks.

  • Cannonballs (grapes)
  • Chocolate donuts
  • Salty Sea Water (blue punch)
  • Orange Slice Pirate ships (found this awesome idea here)
  • Cupcakes – Pumpkin w/Cream Cheese Frosting and Chocolate Chocolate Chip (Nothing Bundt Cake knockoff – a.k.a. the best cake recipe ever…found here)

Pirate Gear

  • Hats from Meri Meri
  • Hooks & Eye Patches from Dollar Tree
  • Tattoos from Hobby Lobby



The treasure hunt was definitely the highlight of the party – the kids had a blast swinging on the rope, walking the plank and searching for the treasure chest. Luckily, my parents have 4 acres of land for the kids to run around on.

I got the hanging banner and cupcake wrappers/toppers from Meri Meri using a 50% off deal – the quality was awesome and everything was super cute.

I had a whole pinterest board for his party, but with the lack of time, I had to pick and choose what I wanted to do – to check out my inspiration board – click here.

Happy Birthday to Zander!

food, printables, projects

Turning 30 & Birthday Printable

Not me, I’m still a few years away from the big 3-0, but this weekend we celebrated my husband’s 30th birthday. I tried to decide if I wanted to do a theme for the party, but couldn’t come up with something great for a 30th, so I decided to just go with “Turning 30” being the theme.


I hung up signs around the room with random facts and quotes I found about turning 30 – my hubby wasn’t especially encouraged about losing muscle mass.

I hung up this Happy Birthday pennant banner above the food table – it added just the right amount of festivity. (I’ve included the printable below.)

I figured a man’s party is mostly about food, but we didn’t want to serve a full meal, so we went with snacks. After putting together our menu I realized that the real theme of the party was “Cream cheese” because everything we picked had cream cheese:

Bacon-wrapped Stuff Jalapenos, Stuffed Mushrooms, Creamy Caramel Apple Dip,

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cake w/Cream Cheese Icing (shaped as an Apple laptop)…lots and lots of fattening cream cheese.

Fattening, but delicious.

P.S. If you like chocolate cake – try this recipe. Trust me, it’s a-maz-ing.

Here’s the Happy Birthday Pennant Banner (printable on an 8.5 x 11)


crafty, kids, projects

A Race Car 2nd Birthday for Z!

My little boy turns 2 today! Wow, my little boy turns 2 today…

I have to admit I’m a little emotional as I type these words. I know everyone says that kids grow up fast, but you just never really believe them until yours blows through 2 years in the blink of an eye.

I’ve enjoyed these two years of watching my baby grow into a little person.

He’s funny, sweet, tender-hearted and above all, energetic. He keeps me on my toes and belly-laughing every day.

Such a cool kid definitely deserves a cool 2nd birthday party!

Z has a deep love for anything cars, so we went for a car-themed party. I’m not a fan of cartoon-type parties, so we steered away from Disney’s Cars and used more generic hot wheels cars.

First, we borrowed Little Tykes cars from all of our friends, so that the kids would have cars to drive around in. Then, we used rolls of black plastic tablecloth to make a track for them to drive on and added stripes with yellow duct tape.

The kids each received a Driver’s License as they arrived to wear around their neck – they even included their picture!

We set-up stations for the kids to stop at around the track. There were 6 stations:

Gas Station (cardboard box, old hose, water nozzle)


Drive-in Movie (TV, Disney’s Cars, Comfy blanket)


Auto Shop (tools for the kids to pretend to fix their cars)


Rest Area (kiddie pool, plastic balls)


Car Wash (pvc pipe, fabric strips)


Home (tent, play rug, hot wheels)

The kids had a blast driving, crashing and especially going through the (waterless) Car Wash.

For dinner, we served hot dogs, chili, and for sweets we served “Spare Tires” (mini chocolate donuts) and “Dipsticks” (chocolate dipped pretzels).

The cake I made was a racetrack cake that I found at It’s just 2 round 8” cakes pushed together with a black fondant track. And the cake tasted oh, so good. One was a Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cake from Favorite Family Recipes (and it was amazing) and the other was a Vanilla Cake w/Raspberry filling from

For the goodie bags, I made the car-shaped crayons from Homemade By Jill and they were super easy, but very cute (sorry I don’t have a picture).

The tables had black tableclothes and yellow stripes that matched the road motif.

It was a huge success! It was a lot, lot of work, but totally worth seeing Zander having a wonderful time. And one of the best things about the party was that we didn’t spend a lot of money, because we used lots of things we already had!

If you’re interested in downloading any of the printables (cupcake toppers, signage, driver’s licenses, etc) let me know and I’ll put them up!


Race to the Party – Birthday Invites!

For Zander’s 2nd birthday party this year we decided to go with a theme that best fits his current interest —cars! He spends a large portion of his day driving cars and trucks on the race track, railroad track, coffee table, couch, floor and bed. I’m still working on all of the details for the party, but we just picked up the invites I designed and I am so excited to send them out!

It was my husband’s genius idea to put Zander’s cute lil’ face on a body driving a car…I love them and am so excited for the party! Hopefully we can pull off everything!


crafty, kids

Dr. Seuss Birthday Party

I love books. I love to read, I love to just go to a bookstore or a library and look at all of the books. Thankfully, my son loves to read as well. He will go in and pull the books off his shelf and sit and look at them over and over. So, for my son’s first birthday party, I thought that we should do something to do with reading. What better children’s books than Dr. Seuss?
I refused to spend tons of money on a one-year-old’s birthday, so I was determined to make most of the stuff myself to keep it inexpensive.
Here are the invites I designed and had printed as postcards:
This is the poem from the left side of the card:
The news just came in
from the County of Knowing,
that Zander Lang
is very quickly a-growing.
He is getting so big,
that a party we’re throwing!
November’s the month,
the 21st is the day.
An Open House leaves,
plenty time to play.
Starting at 2,
You can come by and say,
Congrats to lil’ Zander,
your life’s on the way!
For food, I made three kids of cupcakes: a pumpkin w/cream cheese frosting, a white chocolate filled cupcake & a brownie/snickers cupcake.
red fish, blue fish: we bought a fish-shaped candy mold from a cake store and red and blue candy to melt and make red and blue fish.

 Of course we had green eggs & ham
(deviled eggs dyed green & ham roll-ups).

 We also had “Goose Juice” (water) and “Moose Juice” (punch).
I found a Z shaped cookie cutter and made blue Z-shaped cookies especially for “Zander.”
the food table
the cake was actually rice krispy treats cut into circles and stacked on each other. We made a very last minute batch of homemade fondant from marshmallows, water and powdered sugar. We cut it in stripes and painted the color on it. The plan was to have a much more polished finished product, but time was short and we did what we could.
The cake stand is something we had laying around. Somehow we turned it into a 3 tiered cake stand.
I checked out tons of Dr. Seuss books from the library and tied balloons to them for centerpieces.
My mom crocheted a striped Cat in the Hat hat for Zander to wear. It was so cute. She didn’t even have a pattern, she just made it from scratch!
Guest Book: I made a card for each letter of the alphabet. Guest were asked to give life advice beginning with that letter. I’m planning on compiling them into a book for Zander. They turned out even better than I expected.
Here are some examples:
G: God loves you now and forever.
J: Jump on the Bed.
N: Never eat yellow snow
T: There is no such thing as too many pictures, so smile!
Decorations were simple, I made this pennant banner out of scrapbooking paper and ribbon. We saved it to use for future birthday parties too.
Then we took some popular Dr. Seuss quotes and wrote them on poster board and posted them as signs all around the party.
Here Z is with his hat and of course, his own cake.