Sunday, June 15, 2014

Easter Bunnies and Superheroes

We have more than settled into our place in Hampton, Virginia.  It has now become our home complete with school events, sporting events, playgroups, friends, birthday parties, weekend BBQs, photography sessions, and a part time job for myself.   I've just recently been able to sit long enough to convert my own family pictures from RAW to JPEG with the intent to finally print some and get them hung on our walls.  Believe it or not, I have not a single framed picture in this house.  So many of our precious memories are stored away on my external hard drive but here are a few of our recent moments.
Easter 2014
This year, Matthew's birthday fell on Easter Sunday.  We had a special birthday breakfast, donuts with a candle, and held his birthday party the following weekend.
Looking a little serial killer-ish.
Looking a little mental institutional-ish.
There we go, much cuter.
Craft projects allow for a rare moment of peace and quiet.
Well, until something goes wrong.  There is no doubt where Nicholas, the kid on the right, gets his temper.  Home girl over here is going to have to teach him how to reel it in.  What can I say?  We are just passionate people. 
And passionate people often receive funny looks from others.
By the way, we were eating egg salad for a week.
Easter morning was a mixture of birthday presents from us and baskets from the Easter bunny.  Matthew isn't exactly athletic and so we were stunned when he took an interest in archery.  After spending one day shooting at a Tiger Scout camp, he was hooked.


OK, isn't this awful?  This is what an Easter basket/picture looks like for your first born.
And this is what an Easter basket/picture looks like for your third born.
"Oh, shit! We forgot to put together a basket for Atticus.  Here, throw some things around him and snap a picture so he'll never know should he decide to look back years from now."
Don't judge me =)
The archery set was a hit.
I had an odd feeling in my heart when we piled outside to hunt for Easter eggs.  Matthew looked so big holding his basket.  It really hit me that my little boy was 7 and that the years of enjoying certain activities are numbered.  How many years will it take before he no longer wants to dye Easter eggs, or stops believing in the Easter bunny, the tooth fairy, or Santa?  I'm not a big crier but I had to stop and choke back some emotion as I saw him take off in his quest for hidden eggs.

Oh, shit.  We forgot the baby again.  Hold on, let's snap a quick picture to show that he was involved.
I mean, really.  Who needs Easter eggs when you can have this cool, crushed, plastic water bottle to play with instead.
Easter wouldn't have been complete without testing out the new archery set.


Matthew Turns 7!!!!
I used to be awesome at planning birthday parties.  Well, I was awesome until I had more than one kid.  The first one had a custom cake like this
The second child had a Walmart cake.  In my defense, he did get a smash cake.

 And the third child received a Walmart cake......bought two weeks after his his grandparents.....and fed the cake on the kitchen floor.

Which he flippin' hated.

I made a promise to myself that 2014 was going to be different.  I was going to throw my kids pinterest worthy birthday parties.  First up, Matthew's superhero themed party. 
I often hear other moms talk about how OCD they are.  It's usually followed with, "No, I'm serious.  I'm so OCD, it's crazy."  Well, when you start drawing out the decorations for your kids' birthday parties, come talk to me.
I'm not kidding.

I know, I have issues.  Just do what my husband does.  Sit back and enjoy the ride.  There is a method to my madness.
Here we go:
1.  Superhero puff balls:
  I made the large puff balls out of tissue paper and the signs out of cardstock.  Here is a puff ball tutorial.

2.  Cityscape
You could use something sturdy and cheap like OSB board but I wanted something easier.  After trying and failing to locate a large cardboard box, a girlfriend came across a huge water heater box which I gladly took off her hands.
I took it apart at the seams, painted it black, and used a Cricut to cut out different size rectangles and squares from yellow cardstock. 

3.  Superhero Garland
Honestly, if you don't already have a ton of cardstock, just go ahead and buy premade garland.  It will probably be cheaper. Being that I always have an obscene amount of cardstock, I went ahead and made my garland.  I used the Cricut and printer to create the superhero symbols and bought cheap ribbon from Walmart to connect it all. 

4.  Buffet Table Risers
I learned, through pinterest, that interesting buffet tables have elements of varying height.  Therefore, I should incorporate some buffet risers to add optical interest.  Alrighty.......
I bought 4 small square mailing packages from Walmart for $1 each.  I covered them with strips from comic books found around $1 each at a thrift store.

5.  Kryptonite Candy Buffet Containers
This was a hefty initial investment and by hefty I mean around $25.  However, I have already used the containers for another birthday party and will continue to use them until they break.
I used photoshop to render the comic shapes and connected them to ribbon with hot glue.





The large superhero logos hanging around the room were the product of a past project.  They are usually hanging in Nicholas's bedroom but we pulled them for the party. 
They photograph pretty well!
We had more than enough food to go around.  I decided to have one table dedicated to actual food as well as a candy buffet.

I really loved my buffet table risers and pinterest was right.  They do add visual interest to a table.

We can't forget the goody bags.
Matthew's party was an absolute success.  Him and his friends had such a wonderful time and the adults did as well. 


I wasn't 100% satisfied with the cake but the kids loved it and that's all that mattered.


Lets face it.  Planning and hosting parties can be stressful.  We thoroughly enjoyed every minute spent with our guests but it was also nice to have some family time afterwards.

In the middle of a cornhole game, we simply decided it was time to cut Atticus's hair. 
Atticus is one gorgeous baby.


We ended the day with a campfire and smores.

Nana's very first smore!
I saved the party decorations and put them to good use. 
One party down and two more to go.



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