Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words may be encouragement to them. Ephesians 4:29b

Monday, September 29, 2014

Beefin' Up My Bags!

Lately, I've been stocking up Clearly Candace on Etsy with more party sacks!  I will blame a lot of this on my geeky love for creating the designs.  The software I use is kind of nerdy fun for me.  I have also learned that new/current party themes sell pretty well, if there's not as much else out there.  Boys seem to want the latest greatest themes, and my son is no exception!  It's always the brand new movie/show/character themes that have no party goods in stores they like, forcing moms to turn to Etsy. :) (Can I get an "Amen" moms?) 

My son's party bags were my inspiration as my first trial-and-error Etsy items.  Along the way, I learned a little more about Etsy and licensed characters (I draw my own), and I provide my Ninjago-inspired masks for free. FYI, the "brick company" is a little more nitpicky. ;)

TMNT masks on Etsy in color or black and white

Lately, the bags have been more geared to boys, but I plan to start some girl ideas soon. 
If you missed them, here are my most recent printables...
So, if you know of any kiddos or moms wanting/planning any of these themed birthdays, send them to the shop!  A cheap idea that's easy and creative and fun for the kids! 
Thanks for visiting!
Keeping Him in mind,

1 Peter 4:10

Sunday, September 7, 2014

American Girls and Master Builders

Apologies on a much-delayed birthday celebration post for my kiddos!  It's been a busy Spring/Summer 2014!

It actually happened.  2014 was the first year my kids had actual separate birthday parties!  I cannot believe I managed to make it this long!!  It was a money-saver, but in the end, I knew the separated party demands would come.  Lucky for us, it turned out to be easier than it could have been.

American Girl Store or Bust!

E wanted to go to the American Girl Store, so we planned a trip to see/meet family in DFW, including her little BFF who's grandparents live in Dallas, too.  We met up for an official AG Birthday lunch in their restaurant, complete with party hats and favors.  Afterwards, she got to shop with family and top it off with family pedis! Let's just say her day was MADE! :)

I didn't create anything for this party, believe it or not!  The store provided favors for E and her friend and invitations for the family.  Since we wouldn't be local to home, this really helped make it a fun, low-stress party. SCORE!  I also found a cute "in-theme" gift for her. This adorable Aggie outfit from Etsy for her doll.  It even came from a woman in TXK - my hometown - Crazy!  I think her doll Emily digs it. ;)

Everything Was Awesome!!

Now, I did pull a few things out of my creativity hat for B's party.  He wanted a LEGO Movie-themed sleepover, so we let him invite three friends for a movie out and cake/game time/sleepover.  I found this invitation to hand to his buddies after school. Quick and easy!

Next, I got to work on party favors - my favorite part!  I decided that since there were only 4 boys, I would go bigger.  I came up with an idea for t-shirts to wear to the movie!  Let me tell you, these were--and still are--a HIT with the boys!  They wore them to school every week before summer! :)  For the front, I used my Silhouette to create a Lego cube stencil.  I painted in the stencil with white glow-in-the-dark fabric paint.  I created a Lego font stencil for the back.  I filled the letters with the same glow paint, but added a little black paint for edging to make them pop more.  They took a little longer than I liked, but they turned out well!

To hold the favors, I got yellow beach buckets from Dollar Tree.  I then created Lego Movie character faces using  my Silhouette and applied the black adhesive vinyl faces to the buckets.  I decided on Emmett, Benny, Bad Cop, Lord Business and Wild Style (for sister).  I filled the buckets with the t-shirt, a Lego mini-figure and some candy treats.  For sister (and her friend), instead of a shirt, I hot-glued a Lego piece to a colorful hair bow for some "Wild Style" hair flare. :)

This year and didn't have to (or get to?) to make cakes/cupcakes.  AG made E's cake and both my kids wanted American Cookie Company cakes on their actual birthdays.  No cake-making took a big chunk of time out of party prep, but I was still a little sad they didn't request Mom make a cool cake for their themes. :-/  Oh well...I honestly don't blame them.  I'd eat a cookie cake over a regular cake any day!  I guess they take after mine and Daddy's sweet tooth!

The fun "in-theme" gift for B this year was a small DIY project.  My mom found a golf ball shelf on ebay that we decided we could turn into a Lego mini figure display shelf.  I simply spray painted it black and hot glued 72 black flat square Legos (cheap on ebay) into each hole.  He was pretty stoked about it.  It never got officially hung in TX, but it's now hung up in Montreal!  He likes to use it as the "Think Tank" from the movie where Lord Business had all the Master Builders captured.  :)

And with that, we had another year of successful, fun birthdays!  It did help that they were planned two weeks apart. :)  Now to figure out what to do for their first international birthdays!  A good (or bad?) thing for them is that we will be on Spring Break during both their birthdays.  I vote for an island beach party venue...on a REAL ISLAND! :)  No really...they may have some epic birthdays these next 3 years.  Who wouldn't enjoy taking in some of God's tropical beauty for their birthday? I can hear the ocean waves now....

I will put my hope in God!
I will praise him again— my Savior and my God!
Now I am deeply discouraged,
but I will remember you--
I hear the tumult of the raging seas as your waves and surging tides sweep over me.
But each day the LORD pours his unfailing love upon me,
and through each night I sing his songs, praying to God who gives me life.
(‭Psalms‬ ‭42‬:‭5b-6a,7-8‬ NLT)

Thanks for visiting!

With Him in mind,