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June 21, 2016

Summertime Backyard Sack Race

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SweeterTogether #CollectiveBias


Summertime in Texas is hot, hot, and did I say hot?! What better way to beat the summer heat then with a summertime backyard sack race? It's a perfect way to keep kids busy indoors while decorating the sacks, aka pillowcases, then heading outdoors to help to set up the race course in the backyard. Plus, throw in some fun water balloon target practice and a delicious bowl of ice cream and you have a perfect summer backyard fun day full of family fun. 

How to Create a Backyard Sack Race
Materials Needed:
  • Pillowcases - king size or body pillow size worked best for us. My boys are a little tall for their age.
  • Paint, fabric paint works best, but we created ours with regular craft paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Craft materials (optional); ribbon, material, stickers, etc. to decorate your sacks
  • Crepe paper; multiple colors
  • 4 Yard stakes
  • Start and Finish signs


How to Make:

  1. Start painting. Place paint on a plate or tray and let your kids decorate their own sacks how they want. 
  2. Let dry. Make sure they are completely dry before jumping in.

 

Set Up Jumping Course:

  1. Using the yard stakes, place to form a large square.
  2. Wrap the crape paper around all 4 yard stakes, taping ends in place. Be sure to leave one side open.
  3. Add a start and finish sign
  4. Set up your lanes. I placed a cone in the center to designate the two lanes.
  5. Ready..... Set..... Jump!!!! 







First one to cross the finish line (break through the paper) wins!!! Ours was a photo finish that ended in a tie of course!


After all that jumping, the boys didn't want the fun to end. I quickly grabbed some sidewalk chalk, tape, and a bunch of water balloons to create some target practice, and to help cool down a bit.

How to Create a Backyard Water Balloon Target Practice Game

Materials Needed:

  • Water balloons
  • Sidewalk Chalk
  • Tape, painters tape, duct tape, etc.


How to Make:

  1. Place tape on ground to create a large square or circle.
  2. Create a smaller square or circle inside the larger square.
  3. Create a bulls-eye inside the smaller square (optional).
  4. Fill water balloons with water and place in a large container.
  5. Create a score chart with chalk to the side.
  6. Using the chalk mark score numbers inside each square level.
  7. Toss balloons to land in the target areas and record.
  8. Balloon has to POP inside the area to gain the points.





After all the balloons had been tossed and broken and the final scores had been tallied, we headed indoors to help cool down with the new DREYER’S Butterfinger Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream and DREYER’S BabyRuth Ice Cream. How could we not? It's ice cream and candy in one!! Two our of favorite things. Plus, it's made from fresh milk and cream with no artificial flavors or colors and most importantly no rBST (milk production hormone). 




Head to your local Wal-Mart to grab your DREYER'S Ice Cream with flavors inspired by your favorite candy for a delicious summer treat. Plus, stay for an in-store demo featuring your favorite flavors this month in June.

How do you and your family cool off in the summer heat? 

June 18, 2016

Catch a Falling Star Watching Party



It's summer and that means lots of outside play time, warmer weather, and staying up late. To celebrate the start of summer I treated the boys to a Catch a Falling Star Watching Party in the backyard. They are fascinated by the stars, outer space, and all that comes with it. What better way to celebrate their love for Astronomy then to head out to the back yard with some flashlights, popcorn, and lots of goodies!





We wanted the party to be fun and festive so, used lots of glitter and gold and added some blues in there as well. We hand crafted the glitter star banner with twine to add some sparkle to the party. We chose elements, most I already had on hand, that complimented our out of this world star party.




Of course our party ware had to match as well. Using permanent metallic and glittered gold vinyl, we cut out stars and applied to the cups filled with yummy popcorn and dishes holding the chocolate covered raisins and mini star shaped sugar cookies.



No star watching party would be complete without your very own star dust to bring home. What is star dust? Well, have you seen a shooting star? The trail or tail of "dust" following the star, falls down to Earth and we catch it and seal it in a jar. Well, this is according to my boys.



Once the sun went down and the lights went off, the stars came out and were shinning brightly. But, we didn't want the kids to get scared of the dark, so we had some mini flashlights to light way back to the house. Plus, they were able to bring them home for some flashlight fun at home. 



These Constellation Guides from Lulu the Baker was absolutely perfect for our party. They were a great way for the kids to study the constellations and get an idea of what to look for once the sun went down. We paired them with our glittered clipboards which was a fun and simple DIY project.



At the end of the night, our guests were treated to mini muslin bags filled with glow sticks, flashlight, and a mini star cookie as a thank you for coming out to star gaze with us.



I served a blue constellation punch for our party guests in matching blue mason jars with topped with a festive blue striped straw. Each straw was topped with a gold glitter ribbon flag.



Star shaped blue, white, and gold cookies cookies and iced star shaped rice krispie treats were on hand to enjoy as they waited for the sun to set.




The gold coated star topped cupcakes were a hit and a party favorite.


Once the kids were completely stuffed, they relaxed on the blanket and waited for the sun to set.




Here comes the stars! They could not wait to see all the shining stars in the sky. They quickly studied the guide and got to know all the constellations in hopes to find them all.



For some added inspiration, we sneaked in the Starry Night painting by Van Gogh.



It was such a fun and inspirational party for my boys and their friends. They all had a blast and they can not wait do this again soon. 

Vendors and Credits:
Styling and setup - Creative Designs by Toni
Cupcakes, cookies, and treats - Kimberly and Loren's Sweet Treats
Large Constellation Picture - Paper Source
Constellation Guides - Lulu The Baker
Large Blue Sphere - HomeGoods
Patchwork Quilt - Pottery Barn Kids

June 16, 2016

4th of July Bash on a budget


Wanting to celebrate the 4th in style but have a tight budget??? We styled this fab 4th party on a very low budget! Check it out and see how you too can have a great party on a low budget. Please see info below photos for details on price and where to get as well as how we did it. I of course couldn't have done it alone. A huge thanks to Aimee, our designer/coordinator, for all the help!!! 


I created the Pledge sign and printed out on white card stock and framed in a white frame I had on hand. We had all platters and stands on hand. We also placed a festive picnic blanket on top of a regular table cloth for a more festive feel. Using old banister posts from the habitat for humanity store and tied a banner from the Dollar Tree, we created the backdrop.






For food, we cut up a banana and drizzled with chocolate and sprinkles. All items we had in the kitchen. Rice Crispie treats were purchased. We cut in half and placed a stick in each one. We placed a bowl of strawberries from the fridge.


For the festive water bottles, we cut strips of scrapbook paper and wrapped around and taped each paper over the label of each bottle.


We crafted the blue and white container by re using an old oatmeal oats container and wrapping a piece of scrapbook paper around it.



For the striped pin wheels, I cut 4 squares from a 12x12 sheet of scrapbook paper, folded and cut to create pinwheels. I created and cut out the center circles. Will post a DIY for this project shortly. I used the paper straws as well as the sticks/base for the pinwheels.


Cupcakes I made using a box mix from the clearance section at the store for $.50. I hand made cream cheese icing and piped on to the cupcake. I topped it with cupcake toppers from Hobby Lobby that were 50% off.


For the Straw Sparklers we purchased patriotic paper straws from Hobby Lobby at 50% off. We got a pack of 20 for only $2.00. Then using tissue paper we had on hand, we crafted these sparkly decorations. Check out the tutorial here to create your own paper sparkler.


For cups/jars we re used old spaghetti jars and filled with red gatorade. Tied twine around each glass and adorned with a strawberry and paper straw sparklers.


In advance, at a craft party night, we crafted the fire cracker blocks and america blocks with a group of friends. All using materials we had on hand. Scrap wood, glue, stickers, and paper. Check out the tutorial here for the fire cracker blocks.


Cost and items used:

Background:
Posts - $5.00 each Habitat for Humanity Resale Shop
Pennant banner - $1.00 Target Dollar Spot

Decor:
Blue/red metallic pinwheels - $1.00 each Dollar Tree
Mason Jars - Free (reused spaghetti jars)
Cupcake Toppers - $2.00 Hobby Lobby
Star straws - $2.00 Hobby Lobby
Red, white, and blue paper banner - $.99 Party City
Fire cracker table cover - Picnic Blanket (from Target, bought many years ago, but think was around $10)

Food:
Cupcakes - $.50 (found box mix on clearance and hand made icing)
Rice Crispie treats - $3.50
Bananas with chocolate and sprinkles - free (had on hand)
Gatorade - free (had on hand)
Bottled water - free (had on hand)

DIY Items:
Fire cracker Blocks
America Blocks
Blue Striped container - Oatmeal oats container with scrapbook paper
Blue Striped pin wheels
Star water bottle labels - Scrapbook paper
Straw sparklers
Pledge of Allegiance Sign
 All DIY Items were free since they were DIY and made by myself or our co worker using materials we had on hand. Scrap wood, scrap paper, and such. 

Total cost for entire party - $25.00

I hope everyone has a fabulous and safe fourth of July!
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