Category Archives: Parties & Events

4th of July

We had such a good time on the 4th! We had family and neighbors over for food and lots of fireworks. I hate to spend time in the kitchen while people are over, so I prepped everything prior to the evening and it was stress-free and I was able to focus on being present.

I picked up these adorable tablecloths from Target (the boys said the circles looked like fireworks), and the table runner from Tuesday Morning (the brand is Thro— of which I am obsessed!). The rest of the stuff I shopped for in our attic, with the exception of the ceramic berry baskets that I use every day into kitchen. They also make handy silverware caddies!

I picked up the petit fours from Alexander’s (if I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a million times– and stuck some extra toothpick pizzazz in them. For the cake, I made two cakes, a red velvet and a blue velvet from the box and layered them with white icing. I cut out a stencil of a star out of paper, set it on top of the cake, smeared icing over it, and then poured blue sprinkles on it. I lifted up the stencil, and voila! So cute, so easy, done!

I also made pulled chicken sandwiches in the crockpot. For the pulled chicken, I winged my own recipe, and here it is:

8 chicken breasts
9 ounces of BBQ sauce
2 cups of brown sugar
1/8 cup of soy sauce
1/8 cup of Worcestshire sauce
1/4 cup of Bourbon
1 tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar

Cook ingredients on high for 4 hours. Remove breasts from crockpot and pour liquid into a bowl to preserve. Shred chicken and put back into the crockpot. Pour enough liquid over the chicken to coat it. Set leftover liquid aside. Cook one more hour and serve on pistolettes.

I used the leftover liquid for storing the leftovers, so the chicken won’t dry out when reheating.

All in all, the food was easy and everyone had a blast. I hope yours was fun and easy, too!






Lorax birthday

I dropped the ball this year on planning Radcliffe’s birthday party. So, in less than a week, this is what I pulled together….

I didn’t send out invitations, which if you know me at all, is something I am obsessed with. The guilt took over, and at 9:30 Wednesday night, I decided to paint a piece of plywood that was hanging out in our garage. Why yes, my husband does think I’m crazy. When Radcliffe saw it the next day, he exclaimed: ‘I LOVE it, Mom!’ Good, because it’s going in your room….

We ordered a lemon dobache from Alexander’s (my happy place), which I decorated with fluffy things to look like Truffela trees, and of course, a rock that I painted ‘unless’ on.

For the activity, the kids planted a succulent (much easier than an actual tree), and topped it off with their own rock.

My new favorite decorations for parties are these giant balloons. Minimal effort, maximum impact. Plus, they’re bigger than the kids, so they think that’s sooo cool.

The only thing Radcliffe insisted on, besides Mexican food, was a piñata. It was ready to go, AND THEN WE FORGOT TO DO IT!!!!! And, of course, this kid holds lifetime grudges. So, here is a picture of the boys beating the piñata after all of our friends and families left. Epic fail. I did catch a sweet moment of the boys eating their candy together, along with our obese dog.

The best part about the day, though, was when I tucked Radcliffe in that night. After I kissed him on the forehead, he says, ‘Thanks for making me feel special, Mom.’