Thank you for stopping by! Here you will find a variety of things as I post whatever happens to be going on in our home - recipes, crafts, homeschool, birthday parties, travels, meals in muffin tins and more! I'd love to know what you think so please feel free to leave comments!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Muffin Tin Monday

Our tins today really didn't have a theme other than: "We really have a lot of fresh fruits and veggies leftover from the party on Saturday, so let's use those."

Our tins contained: Cucumbers, sweet peppers, snap peas, celery, carrots, apple slices, strawberries, grapes, blueberries, strawberry cream cheese dip, yogurt parfait, cheese stick and mini peanut butter sandwiches on silver dollar rolls left over from the party.

Since today is Micah's birthday, I put a candle in his sandwich and we sang Happy Birthday to him. He sang along and blew out the candle before diving into his tin. 

Micah loves drinking out of the "fancy" stemware.

Laural loves having muffin tin meals but she always has the same dilemma: "I don't know which one to eat first!"

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Happy 3rd Birthday, Micah!

Since Micah's birthday falls on a Monday this year, we decided to have his party a couple days early on Saturday. He has been like a little obsessed madman over Super Mario for a few months, so that was the theme we decided to go with. Now, I could have easily gone to an online party supply store and bought the plates and favors and decorations all pre-made for me, but what fun is that? I started the planning in January and here is what we ended up with for Micah's 3rd birthday.

Through the duration of he party, we had the Wii in one room with Super Mario Brothers on it and we pulled out our old Super Nintendo with the old school Super Mario Brothers on it. In a third room, we set up a theater and had the live action Super Mario brothers movie playing. I was too busy to get pics but all three options were popular with our guests.

I wish I could take the credit for all these awesome party elements but I took a lot of inspiration from a couple of blogs I found through the Tip Junkie and some general google searches. I put my own spin and flavor into a lot of them but had a lot of inspiration from some very creative people. I need to look up the blogs again so I can link to them.

The gift table - actually it's the gift piano. I figured I'd save the trouble of putting up an extra table and just use the piano. MICAH are simple paper mache letters painted with Ceramcoat paint. The question block is a glass block that I taped off on both sides and spray painted with yellow Rustoleum. 

The goody table! On this table were Mario hats I made for each child, Super Mushroom Marshmallow Pops, gold chocolate coins, colorful gumballs, Twizzlers Pull & Peels, chocolate mustaches and of course, the cake!

I bought pipe fittings at the home improvement store and painted them with green Rustoleum. I stuffed them with paper shreds from the dollar store. The Super Mushroom Pops are marshmallows on a stick, dipped in red candy melts and then sprinkled with white sprinkles. Toad is perched atop a glass ? block.

On the other side of the cake are the chocolate mustaches in another pipe and Yoshi hanging out on another ? block.

In the center was the cake. It was a 2 tier cake - chocolate on the bottom, yellow on the top. I covered it in fondant and made the decorations out of fondant. It is sitting on top of a hat box that I decorated to look like a Super Mushroom. I got this idea from Grey-Grey Productions but made mine a little different. I also got the idea for the glass blocks and the marshmallows, again making the mallows a little differently. On the top were Mario & Luigi figures. I think I looked at about 50 different cakes and cupcakes online to help me decide how I wanted my cake to look. I am quite pleased with the end results.

Each dining table had candy filled Bob-ombs, a mushroom tin, Starman boxes and a brick block. The ticket invitations can be seen on this table. I sent a separate ticket for each kid and we used them at the party for the door prize drawing. Georgia Mario won one of the glass ? blocks to use as a bank. My kids got the other two.
The Birthday Boy's table got a POW block as well. I painted each of the Starman boxes and inside was a packet of Super Mario Brothers gummis.

The food table. I had intended to decorate this a bit more, but we were pushed for time. I wasn't able to get a pic of the table before it was over half empty but we had: Koopa Bites (lil smokies wrapped in crescents), Piranha Plant Pizzas (mini cheese pizzas), Mario's Sliders (mini burgers), fresh veggies with hummus or ranch dip, fresh fruit, macaroni salad, 2 different potato salads, deviled eggs, pretzel sticks and punch.
 The food was a big hit.

The obstacle course before it was attacked by the kids. 

Before we could do the obstacle course, the kids had to be properly geared up - with their hats and mustaches! You can't go through a Mario game obstacle course without a hat and mustache! I got the hat idea from the Giver's Log. Her fleece hats were so cute and I saw some in an etsy shop but I am far too cheap to buy them, so I decided to make them myself. I need to use my sewing machine every once in a while. I found the mustaches at Party City for about 25 cents each. They were a bigger hit than I thought they'd be.
We had Micah Mario,

Laural Mario,

Georgia Mario,

Rilee Mario,

RJ Mario,

Christian Mario,

Austin Mario,

and Jesse Mario who wasn't so fond of his hat.

First up was the Goomba Stomp. In each of the hoola hoops was a picture of a Goomba with bubble wrap over it. The kids had to jump from hoop to hoop, stomping out the Goombas.

Next up was the puzzle round. They had to work through a maze and once done, they got to open the question block box in front of them. If it had a Starman inside, they got a power up (they got to take home one of the star boxes from the tables and all the boxes had a Starman).

I was too busy helping with the next part to get pics of it, but we had a Yoshi Egg Rescue. They had to carry a boiled egg (decorated with green spots) on a spoon to the other side of the games area. After that, they had to walk the balance beam to the next stop which was...

The Boo Bash. The kids each had to pop a Boo. The problem was that Steve didn't fill them super full, so they didn't want to pop. The grown-ups had to help with this.

Micah did not care much for the noise from the balloons popping.

The last part of the course was to defeat Bowser. I didn't get any pics of this either but, I had a poster of Bowser and the kids had to throw fire and ice balls (bean bag balls) at Bowser and hit him 3 times to defeat him. All the kids really enjoyed the games and everyone did great. After the obstacle course, we played a couple games of Mario Bingo. I used a bingo card generator at ESL to make the cards and we used bright colored M&M's as the markers. It was hard to keep the littlest kids from eating their markers long enough to play two rounds of bingo. After prizes were handed out, it was time to move to opening presents.

Micah Mario and his helpers getting ready to open gifts.

He's starting to look tired, but I love this pic of Micah with his name and presents behind him.

I only managed to get one picture of him opening gifts because I was video taping this part. Unfortunately, something happened to the video so this is all I have for presents.

Finally, we had the cake. There is a reason Micah is covering his ears. You see, in our family, we have a tradition of singing Happy Birthday in the worst possible way we can. Everyone sings off key and at different speeds and it sounds like the most horrible thing you can imagine. Well, as we were getting ready to sing, Micah put his hands over his ears. It was too funny. We even sang it nicely but he left his hands over his ears - just in case.

Blowing out the candle - the votive candle. I forgot to bring the candles so I found some votive candles in the church and we used that in place of birthday candles. Silly mommy. Micah didn't care a bit though. 

Finally, a pic of Micah Mario shortly before the party was over. He insisted on leaving the mustache and hat on while eating his cake ice cream and this chocolate mustache. I think he was afraid it would hurt coming off. You can tell by the look in his eyes that he is just about done for the day and was more than ready for a nap but he seemed to have a wonderful day and his excitement over his Mario Party continued after his nap and through the evening. I had a great time planning and putting his party together and it was all worth it to see the excitement on his sweet little face.


Friday, March 18, 2011

Busy Mama is Busy!

And because this mama has been so busy, this little blog has gone neglected. Poor blog. There is a good reason though - besides a seemingly unending string of colds and flu that have been worming their way through everyone in the house, I've been doing lots of prep work for two big birthday parties that are coming up real soon! Micah will be THREE (I can't believe it!) in just 10 days and Laural will be SIX (no way!) at the end of April. 

So, like I said, I'm getting ready for their parties which is something I actually started doing a few months ago. I decided that I was going to do a slightly more involved party for each of the kids this year since we didn't quite have the parties I had envisioned last year. Now, here I am one week before Micah's party and nearly finished with all the major work for his party. We discovered that Micah absolutely adores Super Mario Brothers. He loves to watch us play Super Mario Bros. on the Wii and, with Laural's help, he discovered the Super Mario Bros. cartoons on Netflix. While we were out at Walmart in Hermitage a few months ago, we walked past a shelf that had a bunch of Mario, Luigi, Yoshi & Toad figures on it. Micah got all excited and named all the characters (except Toad). We decided that moment that his birthday party theme would be Super Mario Brothers. Since then, I've been planning and sketching and putting together an awesome Super Mario Party. Here are a few pics of what I've done so far:

Starman boxes will be a table decoration and take home item for kids.

Glass ? blocks and pipes for decoration on food tables and goodie table.

1-Up Mushroom sans eyes & spots will be the cake stand. I put the cake pans on top for effect.

Chocolate Mustaches because you can't be Mario without the mustache.

Mario Hat without the M - will get to that tomorrow.

Gumballs & Chocolate Coins because you just can't have enough colorful goodies and, well, coins.

Update: Click HERE to see pics from the party and everything completed!

I just can't wait until the party! Micah is going to be wowed by it all. I can't wait to see his little face light up! Laural's party will be a Mermaid/Under the Sea theme. I don't have a lot done beyond lists of stuff to do and I've bought several things for it, but I still have a  month before her party, so no big hurry but I am really looking forward to hers too.


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