Monday, January 23, 2017

Cute and Easy Valentines Ideas

Hello friends and hellooooo 2017!

I hope all you beautiful people are having an extra amazing start to the year.  If you're anything like me, it hasn't really sunk in that it's 2017.
(1. Because you're too busy to even notice, and 2. Because you're in denial).

I do love the New Year though.  The fresh start and promise of new beginnings.  I also love that it always feels like Spring is right around the corner, albeit a very long corner at times. 

The New Year also gets me thinking of the first holiday I get to decorate for and what kind of cute must-have things will be overflowing from the Dollar Spot at Target.  Because let's be real, if it's in that section at Target you HAVE to buy it and you NEED to decorate with it.

That leads me to the purpose of the post, the first 'decorating holiday' of the year!
(Well I guess it's technically the second if you decorate for the New Year.  And if you actually do that then you're an overachiever and we can't be friends.  Lol, totally kidding!  Sort of).  ;)

Valentine's Day.

The day your kids bring home cutely decorated bags overflowing with adorable little cards, heart-shaped candies, pencils with matching tiny erasers that you'll accidentally suck up with the vacuum in a week or less.

Yep, I've always been a fan of Valentine's Day (is it even really a holiday?  I should Google that).  What I'm not a fan of, however, is spending countless hours handcrafting the perfect cards, literally using tweezers to glue on each individual piece of glitter OR going to the store and thoughtlessly buying the first box of Valentine's I see.  I fall somewhere in the middle.  I want our Valentine's to be cute, homemade and fun, but need them to be quick, easy and economical.  Ya feel me?? (P.S. If you go to the store and buy the first box of Valentine's you see, you rock.  I need to try and be more like you).

In the spirit of cute, homemade, fun, quick, easy and economical Valentine's, here are some options that are exactly that.

What kid doesn't love donuts?  Throw some store-bought sprinkled donuts in cellophane bags, tie them up with some ribbon or bakers twine and add the FREE printable tag from Jenny over at Bloom Designs and you're done!!

2.  Valentine You're a Ball (and other cute sayings) 
Shannon and Rebecca of Petite Party Studio have these adorable FREE printables up for grabs.  Just pick up the necessary supplies (cello bags, candy, circle punch, etc.) and you're practically done!  They're all SO cute!

This one would be a fun project for both littles and older kids.  There's no printable, but it was just too cute not to share!  You could do up a big batch and take it in for the class party or package up little bags and include a small store-bought Valentine card, either way, I just love this idea from Hello Wonderful.

If candy isn't an option or you just want to go a healthier route, check out this 'cutie' idea from Linda at Craftaholics Anonymous.  It really doesn't get any easier, grab the appropriate fruit, print out the FREE printable tags and package them up!

See, aren't those cute AND easy??  I mean, come on, you're practically already done!  I'd love the hear your thoughts or if you've come up with a great Valentine for your kiddos (or coworkers)!  Let me know if you have any questions too, I'm always happy to help!  Don't forget to show me a little love by sharing this post, liking my Facebook page, and following me on Instagram!

Have a great Monday!


Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Taco Tuesday!!

It's Tuesday and what goes best with Tuesday??
It's true!  They're the stuff dreams are made of.
If fact, they're so dreamy that one of the first meals I made for my hubby when we were dating was tacos.  With both of his parents being from Mexico and his affinity for authentic Mexican cuisine I KNEW he would be more than a little impressed with my mad south-of-the-border culinary skills.
Or so I thought.
Apparently, unbeknownst to me, the tacos I grew up eating (your classic ground beef, lettuce, cheese, sour cream, tomatoes, olives, etc.) were a little more 'American' than my mom (and that cute little Chihuahua) had led me to believe. 
I'll never forget the moment when I proudly presented my future husband with his taco dinner.  He looked at it, looked at me (trying to and failing at not grinning), looked back at the plate and then said, with brutal honesty -- ahem, loving support, those are not tacos. 
Say whaaaaaa?!?!
Yep.  It's true.  My tacos weren't actually authentic at all.  I was missing some major key ingredients. 
All of them.
Flour tortilla  Corn tortilla
Ground beef  Carne Asada, pork or chicken
Lettuce  Cabbage
Cheese  Cilantro
Olives  Salt
Sour Cream  Chile (aka homemade salsa)
Tomatoes  Lime juice
As much as I hate being wrong (although in this case I think it's fair to say I had been receiving years of misinformation, basically brainwashed), I have to admit that the 'tacos' I was making don't come close to the real thing. 
This one's for you babe. 
In writing.
I'll admit.
You were right.
(Were. This once. Simmer down).
Now onto the good stuff, a seriously delicious Taco Fiesta!  Kelly over at Studio DIY threw the most AMAZING Taco Piñata Workshop Party!  Just look at all these maravilloso images from her event!
This shot is everything.

LOVE El Pato, it's the real deal!  And using the can as a planter?!  Pure genius.



Just when you thought it couldn't get any better....
Tacos, crafting AND a swag bag!
For more pics and all the details click here!
Ok amigos, that's all for now!  Happy (Taco) Tuesday!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

It's A Bug's Life

Hey there all you beautiful readers, followers and friends.  We've made it to hump day and man, did I wanna keep sleeping when that dreaded alarm went off.  So I'm feeling pretty accomplished in only hitting the snooze 3 times.
(That's all it lets me snooze.  Dang smart phone).
The other day I was looking for some photos of a past event.  I grabbed the SD card out of the camera and plugged that baby into the computer.
My fears were true.  The only images I had of the adorable Bubble themed party I did for a client were on my phone.
The silver lining was finding photos of not just one, but TWO other parties I had done.  All of which made me realize I really suck at getting party photos posted.
Here's the deal.
After spending umpteen-million man-hours conceptualizing, planning, creating, procuring and putting it all together, the last thing I want to do is be the photographer, spending a millennia editing my mediocre photos.  When I've got a pro to shoot an event, it's like Christmas getting those photos back and I can't post them fast enough, but Jessica the photographer (that's me) isn't as eager to showcase her photographic work. 
Well, I'm gonna get over that.
So I'm no Annie Leibovitz.
Big deal.
I'm not letting a few less-than-stellar photos keep me from sharing all the fun details with you.    
Now, let's get to the goods.
A few months ago I put together A Bug's Life 5th birthday party for Sally, the cutest-curliest-haired-little-girl!  This party was especially fun because much of my inspiration came from the happiest place on earth!!  If you've ever been to A Bug's Land in Disneyland you know that everything is supersized, making you feel extra buggy, and that's how I wanted the party décor to feel. 
Take a look!









Here's a list of the items I custom made for this event (which was held at the MAC in downtown PDX):
Faux Grass Backdrop
Giant Pencils
Wood Round Cake Stand
Watermelon Prop
Leaf Welcome Bunting
Sally's Birthday Leaf Sign
Bug's Life Character Cut-Outs
Waterbottle Labels
Animal Cracker Box Centerpieces
Napkin Wraps
Bug w/ Rock Candy Party Favor
That wasn't so hard.
I hope you enjoyed my 'unprofessional' photos ;) and maybe even found a little inspiration for your next party!

Monday, August 8, 2016

30th Birthday Inspiration

How did that happen?
I refuse to think about summer ending, especially while I sit here in my comfies working on my second cup of coffee listening to my jammie-clad littles cheering on Team USA.  Summer is just too short, there's no denying it.  It's not the weather that I'll miss the most come fall, but more, it's the mornings spent like this and the absence of the gloomy homework cloud hanging over our heads.  Just as the weather season in too short, so is this season of life.  With the girls getting older and my business continuing to grow, our summers have definitely have evolved, much like life itself.
We'll sleep in for 10 more minutes tomorrow and stay in our jammies just a little bit longer today as we soak up what's left of our break.
Let's switch gears and talk about something that never changes, shall we? - My obsession for a good party.  And this 30th birthday party from Urban Palate is great.  The venue, the décor, the cuisine, it's all perfection.



Check out the full post here!
Well, sweet readers, time for a coffee refill before a conference call with this weekend's bride.  Soak up all the sun and family time you can these last few weeks of summer.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Personalized Teacher's Gift

We did it.
We made it through yet another school year.
{Although this year flew by, sparing us the pain and agony of
the always dreaded slow-moving year}.
I hope your school year is coming to a close and you can enjoy all that summer has to offer.  Late nights, late mornings, bra optional days, Netflix marathons, day drinking - just kidding {not really}, at least those are a few of the things I look forward to when summer break rolls around.
A week or so ago I passed on some cute teacher's gifts ideas to all you fine folks with the promise to share what I put together for our teachers {whom we LOVE}. 
I had an idea in mind and looked on Etsy, Pinterest, Google, etc. to see if anyone else had done something similar, but came up empty-handed.  No biggie, this wasn't rocket science so I got to work.  I picked up three 8" by 8" canvases at Michaels then hopped on Photoshop to design the graphic. 
My inspiration was the periodic table.
I wanted to make each teacher a sign that looked like an element from the periodic table, using their name/initials, the grade they teach and the school year.  I even came up with a cute {cheesy} little saying to put on the card! 



So what'd ya think?!  Didn't the canvases turn out great?  
I hope our teachers love them and know how much we appreciate all they do!
Have a great day and thanks for reading!!
XOXO, Jessica

Monday, May 16, 2016

End-Of-Year Teacher's Gifts

Less than two hours and I can kiss this Monday goodbye.
(I'm not a fan of Mondays).
What's even better is that after tomorrow morning we only have 5 school mornings left (because let's face it, the hardest part of the day is getting out of bed and out the door) before ......
That being said, I have yet to put together this year's teacher's gifts (although I do have something in mind).  All that got me thinking that maybe some of you are in the same boat and so I figured I'd pass along some of the great ideas that I've come across.  Ok, here we go!

1.  If you're teacher is a coffee lover/drinker, than this would be so cute!  Maybe add a bag of some yummy coffee beans or a gift card to a local coffee shop.
Click here for more info!
2.  An apple for teacher.  This sign is ADORABLE and would look soooo cute on your favorite teacher's desk, heck, it'd look cute on anyone's desk!
Click here for more info!
3.  Do you DIY??  This project would be super fun and I think it's so dang cute (plus really economical if you've got lots of teachers to get gifts for).
Sorry, no link.
The image is from Hobby Lobby and the link only sent
me to their site to purchase the jars. :(
4.  Succulents rule!  And so does this darling little plant holder made from some rulers!  Another fun, easy and inexpensive gift!  Now that's an A++
Click here for more info!
5.  This one is so easy, and us busy mamas love it when things are easy, right?!  Oh, and did I mention this printable is FREE?!  Yep!  Just print, frame and voila - teacher's got a new pet!!
Click here for more info!
6.  Yeah, I know this is another mug, but come one, how cute is it?  Plus if you're teacher is a tea drinker then the other one doesn't work as well as this one, right?? ;)
Click here for more info!
7.  This last one is a bit of a wildcard.  This image is from Country Living Magazine and, for the life of me, I can't find the source of this table runner.  HOWEVER if you're crafty (or know someone who is and has some free time) you could easily make (or bribe them to make) this! 
Alright my dears, I hope that gives you some inspiration for your end-of-year teacher's gifts!  I can't wait to share mine with you soon!  Have a great week and thanks for reading!