Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Nesting Baby Shower

A few years ago I was searching for a theme for a baby shower for my future nephew...I stumbled upon these nest invitations, and I was hooked! {plus it was close to Easter and lots of cadbury mini eggs were around!}

Matching nest stickers for the favor boxes....

bird nest cupcakes individually packaged in clear plastic boxes, wrapped with chocolate brown and blue grosgrain ribbon and finished with personalized nest stickers.

close up of favor boxes

bird nest cupcakes - made by Publix, idea from my idol, Martha Stewart. wrapped in chocolate brown nest cupcake wrappers. 

bird wishing tree - each guest wrote a wish on a 'good wish bird' {a blue scrapbook paper cut-out bird} for the mommy & baby and hung it up in the tree!

instructions for the 'good wish birds' - printed on boatman geller cards

diaper cake - i wanted it to be more elegant than the usual ones... this is set on a white cake plate surrounded by floral moss, tied with blue grosgrain ribbon, with faux birds perched on the different levels and a nest filled with white & blue eggs on top.

place setting - with edible bird nest made from pre-shredded phyllo dough and filled with white and blue cadbury mini eggs

another place setting - each table was set with different blue and white plates.

chandelier wrapped with egg garland from pier 1 imports {thanks to my fabulous friend, lissette}

coconut cake topped with a faux bird

white and blue 'cupcakes' made from 2 baby washcloths, a muffin liner, grosgrain ribbon and faux cherries

another view of baby washcloth cupcakes

bird nest invitation hanging by front door in nest frame

bar set-up: champagne mixed with gingerale and fresh strawberry puree and orange juice

wine glasses garnished with fresh strawberries

egg centerpiece

another egg centerpiece

birdcage filled with faux flowers

birdcage on front steps

even the doormat fit the theme!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

thanksgiving reminders

charlie {5} came home from preschool today with copy of Helpful Hints for Cooking a Turkey, written by his class.  the 11 other kids mentioned where they would buy their turkey, how their mom would rub it with salt and pepper, side dishes they would have and guests that would join them. charlie's quote, however, was "We never had Thanksgiving. It's going to be our first Thanksgiving. There's no Thanksgiving in Florida. I just want to have a peanut butter and jelly".  i read this on the steps of his school, the teeny brick building i had graduated from myself, and cried. in front of all the kids, all the moms, the teachers....everyone. his teacher, who was my own elementary school teacher, hugged me - and i couldn't get the words out to explain why i was crying. of course we have thanksgiving in florida - i have always loved holidays, and try to make a special effort to make a big deal out of them in our house, with special traditions, decorations, books,  treats and big dinners, complete with an adorable kids' table. it wasn't that he didn't seem to remember any of this - but the idea that he has been affected by what has happened with his dad's health this year, that things are different, that we are far from home, that no matter how hard i try to keep things 'normal' for my munchies a small dart of uncertainty, change, and upheaval had snuck past me.  and so....what better way to cheer myself up, than making a special thanksgiving treat with my little turkeys?

double stuff oreos on lollipop sticks, covered in milk chocolate with candy corn feathers, icing eyes, whopper face with the white tip of the candy corn for the beak and a red fruit imperial for the wattle. and pretzel stick legs!

wrapped and ready to be delivered to our most favorite people!

and so, this thanksgiving i am reminded that what is truly important is being together with family and dear friends... not decorations, or carefully arranged holiday tables or perfectly brined turkeys and homemade cranberry chutney served in a vintage pink hobnail bowl - but being with the people who will love you forever and ever, without hesitation, no matter what challenges are thrown into your lap. 

 i am forever thankful for our families, for my dear sweet munchies and for every single beat of my darling husband's heart.

dagny {3} is thankful for: her cousins, her baby sister and big brother, mommy and daddy, chicken and movies.

and charlie's artistic representation of our thanksgiving dinner!

charlie's handmade placecards for grandma jane's table

may your thanksgiving be warm and bright - with those you love most close at hand....

xoxo mary

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Firehouse Birthday Fun!

my sweet charlie turned 5 this november - we celebrated with our families, old friends and new classmates at a firehouse theme party! {oh, how mama loves a theme!}

fire truck invitation {discontinued from In Good Company Designs}

the welcoming committee

drink dispenser of lemonade, red cups displayed in a red lunchbox and red paper straws!

 red paper straws displayed in a mason jar, decorated with red grosgrain ribbon and a personalized fire truck sticker

red utensils displayed in red metal buckets {target dollar section}, red plates displayed in a red lunchbox and red napkins held securely in place by a little red wooden fire truck.

dalmation cake pops made by the amazing grandma jane, displayed in a vintage wooden coca-cola crate. {the hubby bought several of these on ebay years ago - finally found a use for them!}

marshmallow and oreo pops displayed in a vintage wooden coca-cola crate. 

marshmallow pops: marshmallows stuck on lollipop sticks and then dipped in white chocolate and then rolled in red, yellow and orange sprinkles.

oreo pops: double stuff oreos with a lollipop stick carefully inserted into the filling, then covered in milk chocolate. placed on wax paper until chocolate  hardened and then decorated with charlie's monogram and age in red icing. 

red and yellow m&ms displayed in red polka dot baking cups

marshmallows dipped in white chocolate and sprinkled with orange and yellow sprinkles for a fire effect!  

{i wasn't thrilled with how they looked, but they tasted amazing!}

popcorn and red and yellow m&ms packaged in red and white polka dot favor bags. 

birthday cupcakes with red and white polka dot cupcake wrappers decorated with white icing and 'spray painted' with red food coloring and topped with a red chocolate fire helmet. i used a fire helmet candy mold and red chocolate melting wafters. {i can't with good conscience give the link for the fire helmet candy mold, because they were just plain awful to deal with!}

cupcakes with red and white polka dot cupcake wrappers and personalized fondant cupcake toppers - fire trucks, helmets and dalmations!  i wanted so badly to fib and say i made these cupcake toppers myself - but julie did such an amazing job!

after stuffing ourselves with burgers, dogs and tons of treats, it was time for a super cute fireman relay race, rides around town on a real fire truck,  pretend race car driving in poppy's cars, freeze dance and simon says. {three cheers for our master of ceremonies, hannah!}

it's not a party without favors! yellow polka dot favor boxes individually packaged in a clear bag, tied with a grosgrain ribbon and finished with a personalized fire truck sticker.  

 fire house themed chocolates handmade by the multi-talented uncle ross - who knew he was a master chocolatier?  love that guy! each of the {97} chocolates was individually packaged in a clear bag with a personalized candy bag wrapper!  we used merckens red, yellow and milk chocolate melting wafers and fire truck, helmet, badge and fire hydrant candy molds. 

charlie's birthday fun continued the next day at school with a birthday 'sharing snack' - popcorn and m&ms in personalized red metal mini pails for each classmate. {charlie's favorite treat is popcorn with m&ms in it - can you tell? love to the fabulous meg fay for inventing it a million years ago!} custom vinyl names and fire trucks by the fabulous kelly at 1derfully made! {if you can dream it up, she can create it!}

each of the 'sharing snacks' was individually packaged in a clear bag, tied with a grosgrain ribbon and finished with a personalized fire truck sticker

and the most important part - thank you notes! charlie's great grandmother, 'gaerta' would be so proud of him!

{fire truck fill in thank you notes}

much love to teams donneson and otis, the quogue fire department {all volunteers!} and my darling husband, who wrapped every single one of those chocolates!