Posts Tagged ‘entertaining’

Caroline’s Winter Fairy Birthday Party

Monday, December 17th, 2012


Hello, welcome to our magical winter fairy birthday party wonderland! We’re so happy you’re here to celebrate Caroline’s second birthday. Our theme this time is winter fairies, who like the ice, snow, cold weather animals and of course, pine cones:

Fancy Chalkboard

Fancy Chalkboard

Winter Fairy Birthday

Fairy house and magic tree

Winter Fairy Birthday

Welcome to my cottage, friends!

Welcome to my cottage, friends!

Winter Fairy Birthday

Caroline’s yearly books, from her first day til this month

fairy tent over food table

Winter Fairy Birthday

Don’t forget proper fairy attire:

Fairy party wings

Wings, headbands & antlers!

Winter Fairy Party

I spy some fairies!

Please have some food:

Winter Fairy Birthday

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Thumbprint cookies (so, so, so good. Insanely good. You won’t believe it good.)

winter fairy birthday food

Candy Cane Chex Mix, Caramel/Chocolate/Candy Appples

Winter Fairy Birthday food

Sparkling Brie Bites (these are now a tradition, since we had them last year too)

Winter Fairy Birthday food

Gum drop fudge (I used those sparkly gummy fruit wedges – DELICIOUS)

Winter Fairy Birthday food

My mom made her traditional Christmas coffee cake

winter fairy birthday food

Coconut snowballs, Pita Trees

Winter Fairy Birthday food

Pancake tree-tower, dusted with powdered sugar and surrounded by extra sparkling cranberries (I used the store brand complete mix, which was surprisingly good!)

Winter Fairy Birthday food

Caprese Pops (pin link, original pin goes nowhere)

winter fairy birthday food

Reindeer Cookies –  E said these are his new favorite Christmas cookie

winter fairy birthday food

Cucumber sandwiches – ALWAYS a hit

Winter Fairy Birthday food

Pinecone cheeseball – I ignored the recipe and mixed 1 block cream cheese with a tub of Rondele herb cheese and added a little dill and garlic powder. Then I ate ALL the leftovers for dinner.

winter fairy birthday snowman pops

Snowman marshmallow pops

winter fairy birthday food

Microwave popcorn in paper cones I made with scrapbook paper and a hole punch

Winter Fairy Birthday food

Olive wreath – This was the only thing that was TOTALLY gone at the end

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Fruit tree – thanks to my mom for doing all the work on this


Cupcakes – white box cake mix with homemade frosting (1 stick butter, 1 block cream cheese, 1 2 lb bag of powdered sugar, the end)

winter animal cupcake toppers

Sparkly polar bears! Reindeer! Narwhals!!

Winter Fairy Birthday food
Extra cupcakes

Winter Fairy Birthday_-13

I forgot to take a picture of the buttermints, but they get 5 stars definitely will make again

Help yourself to a drink:

Winter Fairy Birthday hot cocoa bar

Winter Fairy Birthday drinks

Homemade gingerbread donuts on “milk bottles” (actually those store-bought frappuchinos) (idea from here)

Winter Fairy Birthday Winter Fairy Birthday donut on a milk bottle

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On the hot cocoa bar: candy cane dippers, peppermint sticks, mini M&M’s, mint marshmallows, regular marshmallows, whipped cream, 2 kind of creamer, whipped cream vodka (THIS IS A THING), peppermint schnapps, Bailey’s, sugar sprinkles, milk hot chocolate, dark hot chocolate, coffee, hot cider.

Decorate a tree to take home (or eat right now because they’re delicious):

Winter Fairy Birthday activities

Winter Fairy Birthday activities

Winter Fairy Birthday activities

Winter Fairy Birthday activities

Winter Fairy Birthday

Winter Fairy Birthday

Winter Fairy Birthday

Caroline really enjoyed this part of the party

Winter Fairy Birthday

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Winter Fairy Birthday activity


Don’t forget your party favors:

Winter Fairy Birthday favors

Red & white glitter play dough in mini mason jars with printable tags

Winter Fairy Birthday favors

Magic wands I made from dowels, tiny eye hooks, ribbon and jingle bells (I totally forgot to give them out!)

Winter Fairy Birthday activity

Foam ornament decorating

The birthday girl had a wonderful time (even though her brother blew out her candles):

Winter Fairy Birthday blow out the candles

1-Party Photos7

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1-Party Photos8 1-Party Photos5 1-Party Photos11

Thank you friends for coming!

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Winter Fairy Birthday

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1-Party Photos10

I actually missed photographing a lot of details and people because I was too buy enjoying my own party (for once!) Despite a lot of things not going as planned – Caroline refused to wear EITHER of the “princess dresses” I planned for her, misplacing her beautiful hair bow (not that she’d wear that either), forgetting to give the kids their magic wands, not getting many photos in the photo booth – I think everyone had a really good time and that’s what is really important at a 2 year old’s birthday.

Sites and Sources:

My Pinterest Board

Tips for writing on chalkboards (dipping the chalk in water worked REALLY well)
I made the chalkboards using garage sale frames, spray paint (silver and chalkboard colored) and a piece of particle board
Wings are from both a local bargain store and The Hair Bow Company
Headbands and antlers from Oriental Trading
Tissue paper snowflakes from Oriental Trading
Branches, crystals, ice cubes, paper stars from Save on Crafts
I made the tent with Ikea curtains and an embroidery hoop (
tutorial here)
Balloons from Oriental Trading
The Fairy House is a the Discovery Kid’s Playhouse I bought on clearance after last Christmas for $10
Mini light strings, paper gingerbread house, red lanterns, various other Christmas decor from Ikea
Hot cocoa k-cups purchased at Bed Bath & Beyond
Deer cupcake toppers, cupcake wrappers, paper straws, sprinkles from Bake It Pretty
Super awesome tree stump stands were made by my dad
Winter animal cupcake toppers were custom made by PaperPartyParade
All banners, signs and labels were made by me using cardstock, my printer & free fonts found online

Pretty much everything else is from Target or Michael’s

That was really fun but I am SO glad it’s over and I can concentrate on wrapping Christmas gifts and not baking for 12 hours a day. I think my theme for next year is just going to be “Milk & Cookies” and I’ll spread out all the cookie-making over a month so my feet don’t feel like they’re going to fall off from standing in front of the stove. Mmm…cookies.

Winter Fairy Birthday Invitation

p.s. I forgot to include the beautiful invitations my friend Denae designed for me! She did Evan’s dino invites too & is so talented.

Michelob ULTRA Light Cider Review

Monday, June 11th, 2012

I think this post makes it official – I’ve hit the big time as a blogger. I love doing reviews anyway, but “free beer” is pretty much the dream. Although since I don’t like regular beer very much this was even better – Michelob ULTRA Light Cider is a less sweet, lower calorie alternative to traditional ciders. It was the perfect drink to share with friends on a warm evening, straight from the bottle or over ice.

E came home from work a couple weeks ago and said “So the guys decided it’s my turn to host a barbeque this weekend. They’ll be here around 5.” Lucky for him the house was already clean. And thanks to the week of backbreaking work last summer we have an amazing patio space to accommodate his coworkers and their families. I was also excited that I had just picked up a six pack of 12 oz Michelob ULTRA Light Cider, which ended up being a great choice for a casual backyard party.

Even though summer is making it harder, I’m still trying to choose healthy food whenever I can, so I made chicken and veggie kabobs and a light tabbouleh salad to go with the cheeseburgers and nachos. Since Michelob ULTRA Light Cider has only 120 calories per serving I felt good about enjoying one (or two) with dinner.

Michelob ULTRA Light Cider

After trying it, I would absolutely buy this product again. Michelob ULTRA Light Cider was light and crisp and you could definitely tell it is made of fresh-picked apples. I know “cider” makes most people think of fall, but in this case it was more like a fruity white wine. Like I said above, I’m not a huge beer fan so this is a great alternative. The brewing process for cider is similar to that of beer, with the main difference being the ingredients used: cider is made from apples, while barley and hops are generally the main ingredients in beer. Michelob ULTRA Light Cider is made with all-natural ingredients, including apples, and is naturally sweetened with stevia. It’s also naturally gluten-free!

You can get more information on Michelob ULTRA Light Cider on the Sponsor’s site here. It includes a great tool to find it in your area (and here’s a hint: some stores have a separate cider section, so be sure to look there!) You can also check out the Michelob ULTRA Light Cider page on Or come on over and I’ll share one with you on the patio.