Friday, May 29, 2015

Girls 2nd Birthday Party--Noah's Ark 2 by 2!

Well.. We successfully had the girls 2nd birthday party. I can't believe they are Two already! The first year of their lives felt like it took a long time to get to 1.. but from the first to second it just flew by!

I picked out the theme about 6 months ago.. The girls love animals, and I knew the party was going to be at the Crossings Playground, so we decided on "Noah's Ark, 2 by 2".. because that was of course the cutest and most fitting for the girls. 

I will try to provide info on where everything came from..but I've been collecting it for 6 months, so my apologies if I miss some of it. 

The fabulous Cake came from Chubby Cheeks Bakery in Edmond. It was awesome. She did an Ark "Cake" and then we added the animal Cake Pops to the center of it.. She even made a Noah Cake Pop! It was the CUTEST.. 

The girls wore super cute outfits that we found on Etsy. A Shop called Lillybellasboutique. She designed the shirts for us, then Mom found matching pants from Mis Tee V Us. They turned out super cute.. Ironically, I left it to their dad to get them dressed while I went to setup for the party, and he put Cross's Shirt on Londyn.. lol..

Their Chalkboards were one of my favorite things. We found a shop on Etsy who actually put the pictures ON the chalkboards which I think makes them so much more personal.. and cuter.. Her Shop is Called My Three Charms, and she can do just about any Theme. She's super sweet and easy to work with.

The Cute Vinyl Sign came from Oriental Trading too.. they had one we hung on the gate, and they had another one that stabbed into the ground. They were cheap and they do a pretty good job with those..

The Big Ark, Giraffe and Zebra were ordered from Oriental Trading. Now.. these things do not stand up very easily..they are kinda flimsy, so we ended up putting ours up on the fence. Plus is was kinda wet that day, so it was better that they were kept under the Awning. The first Giraffe we ordered had been shot.. (had a hole in him) so we had to send him back, but they were quick to send out another one.. However, they wanted me to send the old one back.. They paid for shipping, but it was a pain in the butt, so just keep that in mind if you order from them.

We ordered Masks for the Ark from Melissa & Doug.. "Put em on, 2 by 2, wearing Masks is what we do!" and had all the kiddos pick one, put it on and take off! They were pretty easy to put together (I pre-assembled before, but if you had older kids this would be a super fun birthday activity to do while they are there). They were awesome. The kids really enjoyed them. 
Those delicious looking Pretzel animals came from another Etsy Shop Called Sparklesbaby that is UH. Maze. ING. She did the pretzel animals, Chocolate Covered rainbow Oreo Cake Pops, and Choclate rainbow drizzled Rice Krispy Treats. They were all so freaking good. She is super easy to work with and ships them in plenty of time. You can store them in the frig.. We are still eating the stuff a week later and its just as delicious. 

 The super Cute Treat Bags came from Jettabees.   These were one of my favorite things at the party because they are soo soo cute, and an awesome little hand-crafted touch. They were also super affordable. She let us pick which 'animals' we wanted for the bags and they were so cute. We used these as the goodie/take-away bags for the kids at the party. We put a LED light Stick in there, (Compete with a sticker of Cross & LL from Sticker you. They make great stickers for anything,a nd we just loved them.) LED bracelet, Hershey's kisses (complete with Cross & LL 2 by 2 stickers stuck on the bottom of each Kiss. Those little cute stickers were from Party Games. They can make them for little candy bars, or whatever you like. Its just a cute little Unique Touch.
We also put a plastic Ark Animal, and some really cute little Noahs' Ark Rubber Duckies. A rainbow Crayon, Rainbow Swirl Lollipops, and on the back of the sacks we had little Thank you Stickers from Treasured Moments. There are literally a million things you can do as little personal touches. Etsy and Pinterest will dominate your mind with these things.. but these are just the ones I chose that didn't require a TON of money or effort. 

I made Butterly Treat Bags from an Idea on Pinterest. I put Rainbow Goldfish in some of them, and then I put assorted fruits in other. They are pretty easy.. Clothes pin, pipe cleaners, googly eyes and hot glue.. Here's the Pinterest Pin.. 
I also got the Cheese brella Idea from Pinterest. These are super easy. You take Babybel cheeses, cut off the tops of them and stab a bendy straw in them. You can also leave some straight. They make super cute cheese treats, and the cheese gives everyone a break from the Sugar rush!  I also made a fruit Umbrella that the kids could munch on.. complete with baby Marsh mellow Clouds. 

I also made Rainbow Bars.. but there was so much other stuff to eat that it wasn't really worth it. I bought Fruity Pebbles and mixed them with Marshmellow cream (Like Rice Krispy Treats) and put them in a pan with sprinkles. 

Now lets talk about the Cookies. OMgosh. If you have not been to 1 Smart Cookie in OKC you are missing out in your life. People look at these cookies and think "There's no way they can be that cute and taste good".. Um, I'm here to tell you that you are WRONG. Those cookies are the best cookies I have ever had. Everyone raved about them and they are so so good. They can make about any shape you want, and I still have the left-over Donkey on my desk.. he's so cute that I can't bring myself to eat him.. yet I know if I bite into him, he will be delicious magic. The struggle is real folks. She did Rainbows, Raindrops and animals for me. Everyone loved them and they are still asking about them now.. 
The Invitations were one of my favorite things too.. We ordered those from Sara Janes Studio and they were adorable. Took no time to assemble and fit in a square envelope. I also could not send out the invitations without the personalized Stamps from 

You can also order the thanks you's for this at the same time.. Which I should have done, but waited till later.. so be smart and order those when you order the invites. 

Plates, Cups, Napkins, etc.. I ordered those from Birthday Direct. They have cute little bundles you can get. I ordered Rainbow Tablecloths, and more napkins and cups from Amazon. They were cheap, so save the money for the cute stuff. 

These were a nice little touch.. "Flood Water". Got a Printable from Etsy, cut them out, and then Put them on mini water bottles with Packing Tape.. that way they wouldn't bleed in ice, or if the bottle sweated. They were cute and I put them in a big bucket on Ice. 

This cute little "Photo Op" came from Shindigz.. Its a Lion, and you put your face in it to take Pics.. however, it was a little Breezy, and once again, if you do this outside, you'll need to make sure you have a place for it to stand up because its kindof a pain. The Kids didn't care that much about it, but a few parents did get some cute pics.. 

So as I'm writing this.. I realize its way more elaborate that I had firs thought.. Because we also got animal balloons from Party City, Cupcakes, Rainbow Twizzlers, Rainbow Gold Fish, and probably a bunch of other crap I can't think of.. But.. if you start hoarding 6 months before the party, it doesn't seem that bad. I do think the little personal touches make the party great.. So I tried to do as many of those as I could without going broke, and going crazy. 

Everyone had a blast, and everyone enjoyed the food.. so yes, While I did go a little crazy, it was totally worth it! Except now I feel like I have some big shoes to fill for next year! Still loved that it was outside at our church.. kids loved running and playing the whole time, and we loved the big Pavilions for shelter and food. It was a great trip on the Ark! 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Mommie Dearest....

Have you ever had one of those days where you feel like you have just kinda failed at life? I kinda had a WEEK like that last week.. It was a rough week.

On Monday we (MJ and I) went to a funeral.. those are never fun.. The girls had a playdate with a sweet little girl that ended up having Hand/foot/Mouth, so we have been super paranoid that they were going to get sick (so far so good, 6 days later, fingers crossed, and I swear its because I oiled them) and then we tried to go to a fun event at church (Volopulooza), didn't bring the stroller, and ended up chasing the girls across a soccer field.. #Parentfail. Drove the girls to Tulsa to visit MJ's Grandma and to go to the aquarium.. But by the time we had driven up there, visited, ate lunch, and they didn't take naps, they were losing their minds.. So..we didn't get to go to the aquarium. #parentfail. Ran out of Cross's "Juice" (pediasure), Diapers, and Wipes.. #parentfail. So as you can see.. I have had a week in which I just kinda feel like a big fat failure at life..

The girls have had allergies and its just not been easy for them.. Cross makes it much harder because she refuses to take medicine.. LL does too.. so I was thinking.. "Why don't I get those dissolve tabs and then it will be like candy?".. Yes, KC, great idea! So I did this..and it was a hit with Londyn. She loved hers.. so success.. Cross? NO. She spit it out. She knew immediately.. and even though it tasted like Grape Shasta.. she was having no part of it.. I tried to sneak it in gummies, cheese, meat.. Nope. She spit it out every time.. then started questioning the authenticity of the gummy.. Spit it out.. Leslie also tried to give it to her. She looked Leslie square in the face and said "NO" and threw it down.. Sometimes that Kid is too smart for her own good.. Thankfully she will still take the liquid form, so that has been helping with the coughing at night.

I have realized that a lot of things change when you become a parent.. and they should.. Your life is not your own anymore, and the days of doing what YOU want to do are over.. so if you are one of those people thinking you will have a baby and nothing will change.. Think again. It should change, because when you become a parent, you should be thinking of your Kids as the first priority anyway.. but that doesn't make it any easier for your former, selfish self to deal.. Right now Cross is still in the phase of clinging to me. I can't get more than 3 ft away from her or she starts yelling "mama! Mama!" and if I don't' go back (because I'm walking to the bathroom) she lays in the floor sobbing.. I know there will come days when I wish she would WANT me to be around her.. so even though sometimes those moments are trying, I try to just stop and sit with her, because I know the one thing she is really wanting is ME.. Well, and maybe a Popsicle..

With kids comes so many magical moments.. Moments that you would never trade, but there are also crap moments.. Moments in which you feel like you don't get it right.. that they will end up in therapy.. that you could have made a better choice.. that you shouldn't have said that.. that you got dealt a poor hand.. Its hard. There are weeks that you feel like you just don't measure up as a parent.. And there are days when you feel like you just need a break.. but then you feel guilty for feeling you like need a break! Guilt as a mom is huge. I have guilt for not using the words "So in love" with my newborns when they were born. I think the words that I used were like "Scared to death".. But everyone else will have babies and post these heart-felt pictures.. "We just had a baby..and we are so in love".. I was thinking "I just had 2 babies, How will I keep them alive?".. I have guilt that sometimes I just want to sleep till 7:00, or go to 3 movies in one day, Or sit at Barns & Noble by myself...

Its not that I don't enjoy being a mom.. I do.. but I think most people don't realize when you have kids, you are breaking up with your former life. All the things you formerly did, that basically revolved around what YOU want to do have to change. That can make you feel bad, and feel guilty, So its a wake-up call.. I read this.. and it was great.. So enjoy.. and feel less guilt.. and Celebrate your kids.. And realize that even when you screw it up, your kids are still going to love and forgive you.. much like Jesus does.

To The Mom Who Yelled at Her Kids Today (Thanks Brooke!)

I'm going to remind myself of this when Cross kicks me.. because she has diaper rash... and when I try to wipe cream on her.. it ends up on my eyes, my work clothes, and everywhere but..her Butt...And the next time she spits blueberry advil at me... lol.. Gotta love it!!!