BHG tricks & treats issue

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I’m a huge fan of Better Homes and Gardens magazine and I simply can’t wait each year until they publish their special issues, particularly their “tricks & treats” issue each fall. And the 2010 issue does not disappoint! It’s full of wonderful ideas for a multitude of parties ranging from adult only to bright and whimsy for all ages to a monster for preschoolers!

And that’s not all! It offers some adorable homemade costume ideas too. My favorite is the “feathered friend!” And in true BHG style it also offers a TON of decorating ideas (the one next to the cover is part of the “Dead & Breakfast Inn” article).

If you love this season and you love to throw a party, you simply must pick up a copy!

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pumpkin harvest

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As you likely know, we’re in the midst of designing and photographing our Harvest and Halloween collections. With Candy Corn and Spooked Pumpkin complete, we shot our new Harvest collection late last week. I’m going to share all the photography on Thursday, but until then here’s just a little peak at the fabulous cookies Sue from Sweet Tooth Cottage hand iced to perfection when she recreated our pumpkin from the collection. 

Happy Monday everyone!

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facebook freebie today!

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“Like” us today on facebook and “Have a sweet, my pretty!” {witch cackle}

Until midnight tonight all my fans/friends on facebook can download these fun cello toppers (complete with instructions) from our Spooked Pumpkin collection! They’re perfect for giving out treats or for Halloween party favors! And all you have to do is “like” us on facebook and then download the file.

But let me warn you, this isn’t a one time thing. I like giving freebies to my friends, especially around the holidays, and facebook is typically the first place I share them. But freebies isn’t the only thing we share on facebook. I often ask your opinions about new collections and even give quick previews of what we’re working on days before it makes it to the blog.

I hope you’ll join us!

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first day of kindergarten

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No party talk today. Just a picture of my sweet little boy’s first day of Kindergarten {sniff, sniff} and an introduction to my girlfriend Maura Bowen of the 36×37 blog. She’ll make you laugh out loud and candidly sometimes cry. She’s fabulous. Here’s an excerpt from her post “The Idiot Moves of a Kindergarten Mom” this morning:

It’s Tuesday, we’re on our way to H’s first day of kindergarten, and I’m about to make my biggest mom mistake yet. It will happen at exactly 12:05 PM, but at 11:55 AM, I’m still blissfully unaware. 

That’s why I’m smiling as I watch H through the rearview mirror. He sits stoically in his booster seat, slowly zipping and unzipping the front pocket of his flashing Buzz Lightyear backpack. “Shouldn’t we bring all my school suppwhys?” he asks. “What if I need my crayons or my cwipboard?” 

“You won’t need school supplies today, buddy,” I say lightly. “Mrs. M just wants to meet you and your classmates. She’ll also show you some pictures and ask you some questions, so just tell her what you’re thinking, ok? I’ll be right there with you. There’s nothing to worry about.”

I’ll be back on track tomorrow with a sneak peek of the new Harvest collection photo shoot!

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sneak peek: science collection

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I’ve mentioned on facebook that we’re creating a new science birthday party collection for my oldest son’s sixth birthday party in a few weeks. Here’s a little peek at the invite, which is already available in the shoppe, and just a few of the printables that will be available soon. From left to right: favor tag, placecard, banner (one of two), beverage wrapper (one of two) and straw slip (one of six). 

I also have some very exciting news to share about this collection, which I’m officially not allowed to talk about yet. But I know how much everyone loves suspense so I thought I would throw it out there. {sneaky giggle}

I’ll share more details as the party gets closer and if you’re interested in the printables before they’re available in the shoppe, just shoot us an e-mail at customercare@celebrationshoppe.com.

As always, I hope you’re inspired!

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spooky Halloween printables

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In the past few weeks we’ve announced our new Candy Corn Halloween collection, full of trick-or-treating ghosts and screech owls, and showed you glimpses of our new Harvest collection, with a colorful scarecrow and pumpkin that will be perfect for a fall festival or even to decorate the kid’s Thanksgiving table. This morning I want to share our spookier side with some new printables we created to complement our Spooked Pumpkin and Martinis & Mayhem collections.

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Meet the sinister sisters. They are totally up to no good! But with a pumpkin spice cupcake topped with cream cheese icing my boys and a few wanders by can testify that they taste super yummy! {wink}  You’ll notice that these are not your typical cupcake picks. I wanted to do something a little different so we created the head and the hat separately to give the sisters a real 3-D effect when you use a adhesive square to attach the hat. (There are four designs. Two purple/orange witches, one smiling and one frowning, and two green/black witches doing the same.) I really, really love these!

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In addition to the witches, we also created these coordinating tags “Try one if you dare…” and

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“Have a sweet, my pretty!” {witch cackling}

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We also created this hilarious mat that would be perfect on your treat table next to uniced cupcakes for the kids to decorate themselves. 

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Or next to the sisters! Doesn’t the little pumpkin look afraid of her?! Eeekkkk!

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And here are the two green/black sisters together. Like my crow? Well you’re lucky to be seeing him. I had a few things stashed for the shoot and my little ones decided to have a mini-war with the crows. Needless to say, there were casualties…

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And here’s the purple/orange sister with the “Have a sweet, my pretty!” as a cupcake pick.

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Last, but not least, here’s our cello topper. These would be perfect for pre-packaged little favors for party guests or even trick-or-treaters. I’ll be filling mine with gummy worms as those are one of my youngest son’s favorites!

All these will be added to the Spooked Pumpkin and Martinis & Mayhem collections the week of Sept. 13. And as always, I hope you’re inspired!

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real parties: wilderness camp

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My friend Chris from Celebrations At Home featured a campout birthday party yesterday and I had to share it here. The party was hosted by Lisa of Moore Minutes and every detail was perfectly rustic for a campout in the “real” wilderness!

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I’m starting at the S’mores bar because I love how Lisa pulled this all together. Just look at how she displayed her dessert tags: aged paper and pine cones! Very clever!

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Lisa set the scene with three different stations: S’mores table, main dining area, and

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gift/banner area. 

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Before I go, I have to leave you with a few shots of the favor bags and the boys going on a hike. My boys would LOVE this! Make sure you hop over to see tons more pictures and details in Lisa’s original blog posts: classic campout birthday party and S’mores dessert bar.

And check out our campout  and great outdoor invitations and table decor for even more ideas! Happy Friday everyone!

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real parties: breakfast bar

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I love this idea from Kristy of The Purple Pug blog. It would be perfect for a fun and easy back to school breakfast party, especially for little ones like mine who are excited and apprehensive at the same time. If I wasn’t completely out of time, I would host one for my boys and all their little classmates just to help warm the waters. I could also see this being perfect for a slumber party. Since its difficult to determine when guests would wake up after giggling all night, you could put together a cereal buffet table and just let them help themselves as they rolled out of bed!

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How fun are these real orange juice sippers?!

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And I’m just loving the personalized beaded spoons for each child. Very smart favor idea! Make sure you hop over to Kristy’s blog to see all the details!

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DIY dish towel child apron

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I often hang out in the craft room with my mom on the weekends. (Believe it or not, hers is even more elaborate than mine!) It’s my way to relax and get the creative juices flowing. A few weekends ago while we were planning all of the Halloween crafts that I’ve recently posted about (DIY fabric Halloween masks, DIY fabric Halloween and/or birthday hatDIY ruffle cake plate), we got the boys involved and whipped up these easy dish towel child aprons. 

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My mom just got some new fall designs for her fabric die cutting machine so she let the boys crank out the designs they wanted to use to embellish their aprons. But a template and a pair of scissors works great too! 

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The boys chose pumpkins, leaves and acorns for a Halloween/fall theme. We attached Wonder Under (self-adhesive for fabric) to each design and let the boys place the die cuts anywhere they wanted… note the lack of symmetry… oh well, they were super happy. Once the designs were in place, we peeled off the backs and ironed them on.

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Next we selected our ribbon, a 3/4″ grograin, folded in each side of the towel and sewed a pocket for the ribbon. Then we inserted our ribbon, making sure it had enough room to lay flat and move up and down. I love this because the aprons are adjustable to height and make it super easy to get them on and off!

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Here’s how the back looked when finished! Oh, and of course my mom had to monogram their names on with a dripping Halloween font!

As always, I hope you’re inspired!

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