Current Obsession: Christmas Clearance!

Ok, so a while ago I posted about how I was going crazy and was already shopping for my daughter’s birthday??  Yes I know it’s in September and currently it’s January, but that’s not the point.  The point is…the theme is something along the lines of “Freezing Time”, and a winter theme.  So I must shop now while the clearance sales are here!

Well, after many sales and hunting for those 90% off signs,  I think I better stop now or risk having storage bins take over my house.

I don’t want to reveal any decor just yet.  So you get to look at the ever so exciting photos of bins!!

Image

Isn’t this just the most exciting thing you’ve seen all day ;). Pictures of boxes!!

And I know they are labeled “Frozen”, but I have been given strict instructions that this is not a “Frozen” party.  This will just be modeled after the atmosphere that was in the Frozen movie.  Either way I don’t care, I’m just stoked that I got party decor for 90% off, score!

Image

So that is a look into my current obsession.  Creating a frozen wonderland for a September event.  Where is PPA when you need it…Party Planners Anonymous 🙂  I should start my own group.

How about you?  Any current obsessions?  Come on, I know you have something you’re just dying to dish.  Tell me!  I love it!

Neon Party, Part 4, the Final Installment!

Wrapping up my Neon Party Series, I have a bunch of party action shots.  These photos are from Valerie’s 2 birthday parties and a work party that we just had this weekend for my hubby’s pharmacy.  I’m glad this theme got a lot of mileage.

Don’t forget to check out my other installments!

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Family party birthday cake.

ImageImage

Ambiance.

Image

Yum.

Image

In order to get the glow effect in photos you have to take pics without a flash.  So most people end up looking like glowing clothes without heads :).  Unless you are standing directly in a black light.

Image

Party Time!

Image

Crazy Girls.

Image

I wonder what kind of wishes she made…

Image

Playing games out in the yard.  Who knew 9-10 year old girls were such cheaters!

Image

Gotta love how kids chow down as quickly as possible so they can continue playing.  Good thing we always go simple with the kid food.  Waffles, cheetos, grapes, popcorn, and desserts.  That’s what the birthday girl wanted and that’s what she got.

Image

Photo Wall!

Image

Image

We had a black light shining right at the sign so it lit everything.  Very cool.  Just don’t look directly at the light, you will go blind, momentarily 🙂

Image

Black light really spreads.  We had no lights in the kitchen, yet our clothes are still glowing from other areas that are lit.

Image

Me, embarrassing my child 🙂

Image

Sugar makes me happy.

Image

I think I need an industrial cotton candy machine.  It was dry enough towards the end of Cam’s work party to use it, hooray.  All the other parties, too wet, and I was too tired.

Image

I think I need pink bangs all the time.

Image

Some final family shots.

Image

The End!

Image

I hope you enjoyed the party pics!

Neon Party, Part 2

Ready for some more Neon Party fun??!  Well, here it is!

And in case you missed part 1, check it out here

This is a beauty bar for guest to get all “glowing”.  Those lip glosses may have been my favorite purchase.  They were on clearance at Justice and glowed amazingly well.  And the bows…duct tape.  Oh yeah, look it up on youtube.  So many cute duct tape crafts.

Image

I love love love backdrops for food areas.  This one is made from a black table cloth (dollar tree), flagging tape, and rolls of price tags 🙂

Image

Here’s a craft for the younger crowd, or those who like to color.  If you’ll notice, lots of tables are indoors but will later appear outdoors at the actual party.  Well, if you live in Utah you have noticed the massive wind and rain storms that passed through just hours before both of our parties.  BOOOOOOOO!  And the biggest boo of all to the lake stink and gross dust that coated everything outdoors!  Nasty!

Image

But we made the most of it and waited until the last second to move EVERYTHING outside.  Exhausting, yes.  But necessary to avoid grossness and gagging.

These are fun party favors 🙂

Image

Neon card stock turned into a giant accordion flower.  Love.

Image

Another beauty bar shot, because I love me a beauty bar.

Image

Amazing how those little tags from dollar tree could bring so much glow and impact to something as simple as a food tag.  I was giddy.

Image

Hula hoop chandelier!  Man those price tags and flagging tape had so many uses!!

Image

A little peek at the bathroom decorations, light on.

Image

And a video of the Neon Glow Black light bathroom experience.  Ignore me in the mirror. I know I am the biggest nerd that ever lived…one who gets so excited over party decor in the bathroom.  I need a support group.

Neon Party, Part 1

Before I jump in and start talking about Val’s birthday I thought I’d give some tips and tricks to planning a neon, glow, black light party.

First thing you should do.  Buy a black light flashlight.  I bought a little one at Walmart, but I’d suggest ordering one off Amazon or something.  Mine was not as strong as I would have liked.  This little device will help immensely when you are at stores trying to decide if things are going to glow.  Yeah you might look a bit strange shining it on everything, but it will save you a lot of time and money later.  I didn’t buy my flashlight until after I had purchased a bunch of stuff that I thought would glow and founds out later that it didn’t.  Learn from my mistakes!  Just because it looks neon green does not mean it will glow, boooo I know.

Next up, think outside of the box!  There are not very many options when it comes to neon/glow/black light decorations at a party store.  And those places are beyond overpriced anyway.  I ended up using lots of office supplies like post its, stickers, card stock, paper, tape, even price tags!  This ended up being much more economical and unique.

The black lights.  This is the biggest and first thing you should figure out when planning a glow party.  I did a ton of price comparing on line and in stores and this will be the biggest expense, so be prepared.  If your city/state has an online marketplace for used goods look there first!  Here in Utah we have a site called ksl.com classifieds and that is where I actually got several of the fixtures for our party for super cheap.  I got two of the 48″ fixtures with bulbs for only $20 and then 4 24″ fixtures with bulbs for $16.  That ended up not being nearly enough, so off to Home Depot we went.  Home Depot was the cheapest option for buying new black lights for us.  We already had fixtures so we just needed more bulbs. Online, most black lights will be from American DJ and a single tube 48″ fluorescent light and fixture on Amazon is $34.99. This will be the cheapest option if you need both fixtures and lights. At a home improvement store you will pay around $15 for 1 48″ bulb, plus the cost of the fixture.  You can also buy black lights in bulk on ebay.  If you lots of fixtures lying around or can get them used, this would be a great option.

As luck would have it, my sister in law was able to find me a very generous dude who works for a local theater here and he let me borrow a bunch of LED black lights from them!  This was amaze balls since I was going to spend quite a bit of money on more lights. Thanks Haley, & Kacey for the hookup!!

So how many lights do you need?  Lighting an indoor space is easiest and requires the least amount of lights.  I’d say you need to pick your spaces to light first and then decide.  We lit the dessert area with one 48″ black light fixture (2 bulbs), the hallway with 2 CFL bulbs, and the bathroom with 2 24″ fixtures and 1 CFL bulb.  For our walls in the great room we used the LED black lights, 6 of them.  But if we didn’t have those I would have used 2 more additional 48″ 2 bulb fixtures to light the area.  Our house is pretty small so it’s not hard to light, but it will take more fixtures than you think, so plan accordingly.  Pick the areas that are the most important and focus on lighting those.

Ok, boring stuff done!

Here is the entrance to our house.  Val painted a big piece of cardboard with yellow paint we had lying around (didn’t glow, but cute in the light) and I painted the lettering.  My mistake… using black to paint the sign, duh!  At the friend party I was smacking myself.

Image

The next day I painted it will florescent orange craft paint for the family party, much better.  The pink streamers are actually flagging tape.  Super cheap and glows great.  The green is just ribbon and didn’t glow, but was cute.

Image

Neon poster board, a must buy.  Found it the cheapest at Dollar Tree, 69 cents.

Image

Oooooo glowie!

Image

By the front door I put an old frame we painted neon pink and had papers the guests could use for writing birthday wishes on.

ImageImage

Out front we also had glow necklaces and T-shirt strips for guest to add glow to themselves. Yeah the pic is indoors, but it was sooooo windy and rainy we waited until the last second to put everything outside.  More on our weather dilemma later.

The best site for bulk glow sticks is coolglow.com they have a great selection and quality products.  The dollar store is also a great option, but you will find comparable prices in bulk online and get more selection.  Like the multicolor glow necklaces!

T-shirt strips are just that, old T-shirts cut to make loops and then stretched.  They make great scarves and are just fun.

Image

These next pics are of the dessert area.  I used an old fabric board from a previous party, cheap white fabric, and craft paint for the GLOW backdrop.  All the walls I hung black plastic and then went wild with flagging tape and paper decorations that we made.

ImageImageImage

A thanks and and shout out to my sis in law Alli for taking all these awesome photos!  You can see more of her work here where she did the photography for Val’s neon photo shoot.

That’s where I’m ending today.  Stay tuned next post for decorating the hallway, bathroom, and other areas for a glowtastic time!!

Pushing the Reset Button & Neon Party Teaser!

Wow it has been a long time since I blogged!  The reason behind that is coming up in a series of posts though, starting tomorrow.  But as a teaser…

Image

This is the birthday cake I baked for my daughter’s 10th birthday.  Also, you can see a glimpse of the party decor in the background.  So a couple times of year this blog does turn into a party blog.  This is one of those times :).  Yes, I do go all out for her birthday’s.  Am I nut…yes.  Do I love it, yes!  So be on the lookout tomorrow to see how I put together a Neon/Glow/Blacklight party.  I have lots of tips!  Mostly because I made lots of mistakes and we had some major weather disasters 😉

So onto today’s topic.  The Reset Button.  I know I’ve talked about starting fresh a couple of times and it’s because I really believe in it.  No one is perfect all the time, especially when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle.  So being able to take a deep breath and realize that today is a new day is one of my favorite things.  I have been terrible the past ummmm…forever!  J/K, more like 6 weeks.  I haven’t been sleeping enough, drinking my water, eating balanced meals, or taking care of myself.  Bad all around.  But today, I got my 8 hours, had my oatmeal, and I’m ready to start again.  First things first, hide all candy, cake, pastries, and fried/fatty things from myself!  Next, take Freddie for a light jog and schedule my strength class for tonight.  Ah, I feel better already.

Before I head off to run and tackle my mountain of laundry though, I thought I’d hide a little shout out to my girly in this post.  Let’s see if she finds it.  I love that she reads my blog.

Dear, Valie

I can hardly believe that you are now 10 years old!  It seems like yesterday you were a tiny baby, giving me fits because you hated everyones guts, except me of course :).  You were such a tyrant, but I wouldn’t trade those memories for anything.  I like to think that you got all your angst out early on and now you are the most lovely thing in my life.  I can’t believe how incredibly smart, talented, and wonderful you have become.  You are amazing.  I hope you know that.  I love your adventurous spirit, your determination, and the way the way you inspire me everyday.  I truly treasure this time that we have together while you are young.  I hope you look back someday when you are my age and remember all those fun times we had together, just you and me.  You are my baby girl, you always will be.

Love, Mommy

10th Birthday Neon Photo Shoot

I have to post a few pictures from a super fun photo shoot I did with my sister in laws this weekend.  I am in love with how the pictures turned out!  I can’t believe my baby is going to turn 10 next month.  Where is the time freezing machine when you need one.

We took all the pictures in Downtown Salt Lake City.  It was very fun, urban, edgy look we were going for.

The hair styles were Teen Beach Movie inspired 🙂

ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

This post is also a preview of the big birthday bash we are planning.  Neon/Glow is the theme.  I’m getting pretty darn excited about it.  So lots of my obsessing over the next month will probably include lots of party stuff 🙂

30th Birthday Citrus Party

I have to share some pics from the party my Mom threw for me.  The theme was Citrus and it turned out super cute.  I love to style parties and pretty much everything.  So thanks Mom for putting up with this Birthday Girl’s demands, love you!

Here is the dessert table!  Isn’t it adorable?!  I loved how it turned out.

ImageYummy, orange brownies.  Dessert is my favorite food group.  Oh yeah, I forget, it’s not a food group….sigh.  But it sure is cute and fun!ImageMy favorite thing at the party.  Pink Lemonade cupcakes!!  I don’t usually eat desserts for more than a couple days after an event.  I like to freeze them or give them away.  But these little babies…yeah…I ate them all.ImageAdorable fruit.  This is the healthy alternative 🙂Image

I love the colors and freshness of citrus, so spring like.Image

No party is complete without a candy buffet.  Ooo wait, I take back desserts being my favorite food group.  Candy IS my favorite food group!!  I guess it’s a dessert too, but better.  Candy is portable, colorful, happiness, rolled into little sugar filled nuggets.  ImageImageImage

Lemonade Stand!  I think we had every form of citrus flavor available for mixing.  I loved the orange cream soda with a splash of orange vitamin water, very tasty.ImageImage

The food was all citrus themed as well.  So delicious.  I wish I could have a lemon tree!Image

Gotta love a good party!!

Wonderland Party Part 6, The Final Chapter

This is our little Freddy dressed as the White Rabbit.  Isn’t he the cutest?!!

Image

The crazy Dawson family!  What can I say, we like to have fun 🙂

Image

Valie’s cute friends.

Image

Very creative Cheshire Cat!

Image

My hubby is hard to recognize in his Hatter make up!  I learned how to do this look via youtube.

Image

Cutie Pie Cheshire Cat!

Image

Meow.

Image

Gotta love Grandpa dressed up as a card guy!

Image

Tweedles!!  A must have costume when there are twins in the family!

Image

And that’s the end of our Valie in Wonderland story.

Hmmm, I wonder what we should do for Val’s 10th birthday?? 🙂 🙂