Month: May 2014 (page 3 of 6)

The Power Of Pen

power of pen blog pic 2

The other week, I had the opportunity to sit down with a friend who helped me sort through a web of ideas that have been taking up space in my head and spilling over the lined pages of notebooks I keep in the console of my car, my nightstand, the basket at the bottom of my daughter’s stroller.  She let me bounce ideas off of her and offered insight.  Referred me to helpful sources and listened to me ramble.

Ordinarily, the bulk of my communication with friends, family, old colleagues, vendors, virtually everyone I connect with, is through text, Facebook messages or email.  There are very few phone conversations consisting of more than a quick, short question or direction, and less face-to-face meetings than ever before.  But when I really have someone heavy on my mind, when I’m feeling thankful, when someone has gone out of his or her way, I always, always write a hand-written note.  There is something distinct about it.  There is something about that ink that is infinitely different than the set fonts in the drop-down box on our computer ever could be.  And when I slip the sealed square under the metal, blue lid, I know that although it is not yet a completely foreign notion, that it still resonates a little bit deeper.

Send someone you care about a hand-written note today!


Pink Lemonade Stand First Birthday Party {Celebrating Harper Leigh}

When life hands you lemons, throw a {pink} lemonade stand party.  And that’s exactly what I did for my niece’s first birthday.

LSP birthday girl 2

Pumpkin + Rose just launched their party planning services with this special one to start the busy season.

LSP bday girl

The happy one-year-old enjoying the festivities.

LSP birthday girl

An elated wave to all of her family and friends who gathered to help her celebrate.

LSP stand details

LSP photo banner{Lemonade photo banner was strung in the tree behind the stand.  To see how to make this photo banner check out this post from my blog.}

LSP stand from a far

I wanted to keep things fairly simple and sweet, and chose to work with the few same colors all throughout.  We made a mini-version of this lemonade stand above that was perched on the front lawn to welcome all guests as they arrived.

LSP welcome mini stand{A perfect sized stand for little entrepreneurs, parties or pretend}

The kids had a lot of fun with all of the lemons hiding in baskets, scattered across the grass, on tables.  This kept them busy from the start.

LSP stand and kids

They also enjoyed pretending to work the stand and helping themselves to some sweet pink and yellow lemonade.

LSP square flowers

I picked a variety of yellow, white and pink flowers, combining hydrangeas, tulips, cushion pom chrysanthemums and matricaria for different texture in each vase.  I assembled the arrangements and put them in water the night before, so they were ready to go when I set up the next day.

LSP fishbowls

I stuck to a very basic layout for the tables, keeping all of the flower arrangements clean and low, so that everyone had plenty of room to see each other.  A few extra lemons were placed around the burlap table runners to carry out the theme.

LSP dessert table

The dessert table was another highlight of the party.  The treats were easy to reach and the brick chimney provided a great backdrop.

LSP dessert table overview

I loved this high chair {the tutorial can be seen here}.  The very first piece that I knew I wanted to tackle to create this memorable day.

LSP cupcake stand

I made all of the cupcakes the night before and then decorated them with lemon slices and pink and white paper chevron straws the next morning.

LSP dessert table corner

Pink and yellow baking twine was wrapped around the tops of each glass milk bottle and little flags were attached with hand-written messages about the day.  The flowers on this table provided just the right pop of color and stood out against the pale pink, lace tablecloth.  A photo of the birthday girl from the photoshoot I did with her for her birthday invitations was framed, front and center.  Cylinder vases were filled with more lemons and tied with pink polka dot ribbon to anchor the ends of the table.

LSP harper cake blurry

I baked three layers of yellow cake and cut them out to create a mini three-tiered cake for the birthday girl.  I topped it with a half of a lemon and a handmade gold glitter candle.

LSP harper cake

LSP cake smash{Harper’s first encounter with sugar was a hit}

LSP scallop cake

The ombre scallop cake {you can see the tutorial here} was baked the night before and I iced and decorated it the morning of the party.  This cake was for the guests, sliced neatly and served as opposed to the smash cake seen in the photos above and below.

LSP emma and harper cakes{My daughter, Emma, helping her cousin polish off the desserts}

LSP harper cake aftermath

LSP table aftermath

LSP boy and stand

It was fun to sit back and watch the aftermath.  The kids, happy and smiling.  The cake eaten up and lemonade sipped.  All signs of a great party.

LSP emma with balloon{Emma wishing a very Happy Birthday, Harper Leigh xo}

My Favorite Party Details From This Pink Lemonade Stand Bash:

  • The distressed wooden high chair {in pink}
  • The ombre scallop cake
  • The eyelet and burlap high chair banner
  • and MORE!


Stylist:  Pumpkin + Rose

Photographer:  Gina at Pumpkin + Rose

Cookies:  Made with love by my Aunt Joanne

Cakes:  Gina at Pumpkin + Rose

Food:  Made by my dad (and the birthday girl’s grandpa)

Lemonade Stands (the big and mini version):  Made by Pumpkin + Rose with the help of my brother-in-law 🙂

Mason Jar Drink Dispensers:  World Market

Big Pink Balloons and Gold Ribbon:  Party City

Tissue Paper Pom Poms:  DellaCartaDecor on Etsy

Happy Birthday Burlap Banner:  AliEliWeddings on Etsy

High Chair:  Pumpkin + Rose

White Cake Stand:  Home Goods

Birthday Girl’s Decorative Cake Stand:  Amazon

Eyelet and Burlap High Chair Banner:  LittleMaisie on Etsy

Paper Straws:  Michael’s Craft Store

Pink Lace Tablecloth:  RedBarnGarden on Etsy

Yellow Accent Rugs:  T.J. Maxx

Blue Wire Baskets:  T.J. Maxx

Vintage Scale:  Zassy’sTreasures on Etsy

Galvanized Cupcake Stand:  Pottery Barn

Wine Crates:  Pumpkin + Rose

Yellow and White Striped Table Runner (as seen on the lemonade stand):  T.J. Maxx

Burlap Table Runners (as seen on the tables):  Overstock

Square Vases, Fishbowl Vases and Mason Jars:  Pumpkin + Rose

LSP dessert table up close 2

Hope you enjoyed!

Distressed Wooden High Chair Tutorial {In Pink}

When I initially settled on a theme for my niece’s first birthday party, the item at the top of my list that I wanted to tackle was the high chair.  I pictured it old and wooden, painted pink and slightly distressed.  And I knew it would be a focal point of the event.  I just needed to track one down to use as my canvas.  The problem with old wooden high chairs is that although they are often in poor condition, they can be pricey and hard to find.  I managed to locate one on Craigslist for $30 and for an added bonus, it wasn’t in such bad shape at all.

high chair cover


original high chair{This is the original high chair, photo taken by the owner, before it was painted}

I found this Americana Decor paint at Michael’s craft store and it was as easy to use as the little jar promised it would be.  There was no need to sand the chair before applying the paint.

paint blog pic {The creme wax and the soft-touch varnish didn’t seem to be that different, so I got both in case I wanted to test each of them out, but ended up only using the creme wax}

I started with one coat of the pink chalky finish paint and then let it dry.  This paint dries very quickly, which makes this project so easy to complete in one afternoon.  Once dry, I painted a second coat and let that dry, too.

painting blog pic{For this high chair, I used about one and a half cans of the pink chalky finish paint to cover with two coats}

Remove the tray and paint that separately, making sure to turn over when the top is dry, so that you get the bottom and the sides, too.

tray blog pic

Then, I began sanding to distress.  When distressing, I focused my attention on the edges where natural wear and tear usually occurs.

sanding blog pic

To make the distressing look authentic, stick to the edges and the high points of the furniture that would have been touched most often.  Such as the arms of the chair where hands rest and the foot bar where little feet tend to lay or kick against.  I also sanded the seat of the chair, going over the curves.

sanding on the bottom blog pic

sanding again

Next, I applied the clear, creme wax with a slightly damp, clean rag.  The wax offers a soft, smooth finish and not much is needed, so apply sparingly.

creme wax blog pic{I did go over the chair with the sand paper once more after waxing, so that I made sure to rough up the polished look a bit}

Things You Will Need:

1.  Wooden high chair.

2.  Americana Decor (or another brand) of paint in your desired color in a chalky finish.

3.  Americana Decor (or another brand) of clear creme wax, varnish or dark wax, depending on the final look you are trying to achieve.

4.  Old rags.

5.  Paint Brushes.

6.  Sandpaper.

bird's eye view blog pic

{Additional Tip}

1.  Dark waxes can be used on top of clear waxes to add an even more authentic, antique look.  Since this was my first go at this, I stuck to the clear wax, but I am looking forward to trying the dark wax next time as well.

high chair complete

Stay tuned for photos after the party this weekend, so you can see the finished product with the one-year-old model sitting pretty in her new chair!

Hope you find this helpful if you, too, are looking to paint and distress a high chair for a kid’s party!

A Few Of My Favorite Things {This Week}…

{A few of my favorite things this week that I either just discovered or already know I couldn’t do without}

love being a mama

1.     Boxed Cards – I love sending people cards and little hand-written notes and am always on the lookout for boxed card sets, so that I regularly have them on hand.  These offer 40 cards and envelopes, which should hold me over for a while and they come in a variety of cute prints.

boxed cards blog pic 2

2.     Fun Clipboard – Similar to my love of cards, stationery in general is one of my favorite things, but as far as jotting down notes and lists I usually stick with my standard Moleskine.  While I was in the checkout line of T.J. Maxx the other day, I noticed this fun clipboard with a pen disguised as an old wooden pencil and thought it was too good to pass up.

clipboard blog pic

3.     Surprise Flowers – Flowers are such a simple way to bring happiness to someone, but thanks to my husband, the thoughtfulness of surprise flowers helped make this bouquet that much sweeter.

flowers blog pic{Caldwell Flowerland always has stunning fresh picks}

4.     Being a Mama – Though Mother’s Day is now a few days behind us, it has been on my mind and a frequent topic on my blog.  I would be remiss if I didn’t recognize that being Emma’s mom is one of my favorite things always, but this stretch of a week in particular because if not for her, the celebration would not be as sweet.

love being a mama 2


A Few Of Emma’s Favorite Things {This Week}…

{A few of my daughter, Emma’s favorite things this week that she either just discovered or already knows she couldn’t do without or some kid stuff that her mommy may love even more than she does}

stickers cover blog pic

1.     Melissa and Doug Animal Magnets – We got these as a gift from my aunt and like the rest of the Melissa and Doug toy line, they quickly became a favorite.  For a while, these magnets were kept in a bag with the rest of her toys and Emma would line them up on the coffee table and we would practice the names of each animal and their matching sound.  Now, she has moved them to the fridge, a place more suitable for magnets, and they are a sweet reminder of my fun little girl every time I reach for the door.

magnets blog pic

2.     Brookstone Nursery Spa – This towel warmer is part of our bath routine and I get as excited to wrap Emma up in the goodness of a warm towel as she is to receive it.

nursery spa blog pic

3.     Hyland’s Baby Teething Tablets – My daughter got 16 baby teeth in just over one year, actually one month after she celebrated her first birthday the full initial set of teeth were all in tact.  Both good and bad I guess, on one hand they came in quickly and she got it over with fairly fast, but on the other hand, the constant pain was probably not all that fun to deal with.  Early on, we relied heavily on all-natural Hyland’s Baby Teething Tablets and they seemed to do the trick.  They calmed her down and she was noticeably less irritated.  Fast forward to now, at a year-and-a-half and she is getting her two-year molars.  These little suckers are a whole other monster; the first time her teeth have affected her at bedtime.  And there are two things that Emma doesn’t do without, good food and a full night’s sleep.  So, I rekindled my fondness of these teething tablets and have a much happier baby.

teething tablets blog pic

4.     Stickers – For the longest time, when Emma had exhausted all of her toys, found herself suddenly bored with all of her books, she busied herself with crayons, colored pencils, coloring books and loose paper she would find in the printer underneath my desk.  But recently at a restaurant, there was a family sitting next to us and the three-year-old girl happily brought over some stickers to share with Emma.  Instantly, they were on the backs of her small hands, the restaurant’s wooden table, her shirt, my shirt.  These tiny little stickers consumed her and kept her occupied for long stretches of time, allowing us to enjoy our wine for longer stretches of time, too.

stickers 2


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