Birthday Party In a Box

Let’s face it, no matter how old we get, we still love getting birthday cards in the mail. Well, I know I do at least. What if you didn’t just get a card this year? What if you received an entire birthday party in a box? Feelin’ like a kid again, huh?

My sister is one of the greatest people I know. She lives 9 hours from me, so I knew I wasn’t going to be able to be with her on her birthday this year. I decided to send her a party in a box, because I knew her three kids (ages 5, 3, and 2) would LOVE celebrating with her and it took a little less planning on her part and a little more enjoying! She deserves it!!

I tried to use all of the same theme of decorations. I found a wonderful colorful polka dot pattern so I used that as much as I could and then used other colorful patterns for everything else.

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Here’s what I included in her box:

-Brownie mix

-Candles

-Sprinkles

-A “Happy Birthday” Banner

-A table cloth

-Plates and napkins

-Party hats

-Noise makers

-A wrapped birthday gift and card

-A personal bottle of wine [her favorite part, I’m sure ;-)]

She loved it and had a fun party with her sweet little family! If you have a relative or friend you can’t be with on their birthday, maybe this is something you could do for them. Share your twists on this project, I’d love to see them!

DIY Thank-You Gift Idea for Labor and Delivery Staff

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I was days away from delivering our baby boy when I realized I had nothing to give to the staff at the hospital for all of the wonderful care they provide (at least from what I’d heard). I love giving gifts, so I came up with this easy, inexpensive gift. I know it’s not much, but it showed the staff their hard work was appreciated! And it really was!

I bought a big bag of the “fun size” peanut M&M’s and made cut-outs that read, “Thank you for taking care of our little “peanut” and taped them on each bag. I gave one to anyone and everyone that dealt with us while we were in the hospital, from L&D nurses, to recovery nurses, to my doctor that delivered the baby. They were all so excited to receive them.

Trust me, if you have time to do something like this before going into the hospital, do it. It will make their day just a little bit better just by getting something small like this. And they really do work their tails off with a smile on their face.

And who doesn’t love getting chocolate?! This is just an easy way to show your gratitude.

‘Dinner & a Movie’ gift basket.

Every year our church has a St. Patrick’s Day dinner and raffle with a silent auction to raise money for the church. This year they asked the high school youth group to make a gift basket to put in the auction. One Wednesday at youth group the kids decided on the theme of their basket: Dinner and a Movie.

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Everyone was assigned one thing to bring for the basket the following week. This is what we came up with:

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I’m pretty impressed with how well it turned out. Everyone contributed and I’m proud of the kids for participating.

Here’s a list of what could be found in the basket:

  • A $25 gift card to the movie theatre in town
  • Spaghetti and Fetechini noodles
  • Marinara and Alfredo sauces
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • $5 to Kroger (for meat of choice)
  • 1 bottle of Merlot
  • 2 DVDs
  • 2 boxes of popcorn
  • Various kinds of movie theatre candy

This was a fun project and I’m glad it worked out for the youth to help. The basket ended up being a big success at the auction as well. 🙂

“I Love You, Because…”

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!

This year I was a little worried I wouldn’t be able to top last year’s Valentine’s Day scavenger hunt I made for my husband. I don’t want to toot my own horn, but he did love it a whole lot. Ok, our marriage doesn’t depend on awesome gifts or anything, but I wanted to do something equally as special for him this year. So, I searched and searched and searched for the perfect gift to get/make him. Then it happened; I found my pinspiration from a young new mom trying to encourage her helpful husband, found here. How cute is she?

I thought it seemed like the perfect gift for our home. I put my own touches on it, using a different frame, paper, font and felt flowers. I also added to the frame scripture from 1 John 4:19 “We love because He first loved us.” It is one of my favorite passages in the Bible. It’s because of God’s love that I am even able to love my husband. So with that in mind, I can share specific reasons I love him to encourage him daily.

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It’s true. He really does do the laundry every week. I’m so thankful!!

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He absolutely loved it! ::pats self on back::

Enjoy your day, all you love birds!

Ten DIY Valentine’s Day Gifts (for him and her!)

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The most loved and most hated holiday is quickly approaching. Do know what you’re getting your special someone? Do you want to impress the lady or fella you like, but don’t know where to start? Fear not! I have put together this list to help you come up with a guaranteed winner. This goes beyond the gambling chocolates and hearts with weird phrases on them. This is the real deal that shows you put time and effort into this gift. And the best part? You don’t have to burn a hole in your wallet to do these things. Amen!

FOR HER:

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1. COOK DINNER. Guys, there is nothing more attractive to a woman than a guy that cooks for her. Get a couple steaks and grill them with some nice seasoning and maranade. Look up some recipes for side items (potatoes, corn, green beans, etc), and grab a bottle of wine (try to figure out her favorite if you don’t already know). You can’t forget the most important part though…dessert! Chocolate mousse is the way to a woman’s heart. It’s really easy to make and it’s delicious. Set the mood with some candles and piano music in the background. You could even get cute and make a menu for the dinner and placecards at the table. Oh, I’m getting a little crazy now, but you really can’t go wrong with impressing her on this one. As long as you don’t set the house on fire, I think you’ll win her over.

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2. PLAN A SCAVENGER HUNT. If you want to show your woman that you put effort into her gift, make her a scavenger hunt. Put clues around her place (or if you’re married in your alls house) and you could do this one of two ways: 1.) You could be hiding at the end of the scavenger hunt with flowers/roses or  2.) You could have a gift waiting at the end of the hunt (flowers, homemade sweets, jewelry, etc). It depends on if you would be able to be there when she finds it or not. The clues should have her thinking, but not so hard she couldn’t figure it out. Be creative and put some thought into it. I promise you she’ll be smiling the whole time she’s on the hunt.

personalized-valentine-puzzle3. CUSTOM-MADE PUZZLE. You still have time to make this if you haven’t already. It’s easy. Almost every online picture company has the custom-made puzzles. I have seen them online through Walmart, Shutterfly, and Snapfish. You may not want it to have the saying in the above picture on it, but you could have a picture of the two of you turned into a puzzle. Then on Valentine’s day when she opens it, you can put it together and frame it. Adorable.    223843043950160029_Vnecc9Bn_b

4. SHARPIE COFFEE MUG. Most women either love coffee, tea, or hot chocolate. What’s a more perfect gift for her than a personalized, made-by-you mug?! All you have to do to make this is purchase a plan white (any color really) mug and a black sharpie. Put whatever fits her best…maybe it’s drawing a picture, or writing a quote, or song lyrics, perhaps you could just write, “I love you” on it. After you’ve finished your design, simply “bake” it in the oven at 30o degrees for about 30 minutes (sometimes you have to bake it twice before it becomes permanet enough not to wash off in the dishwasher but I would wait maybe a day to bake it again so you don’t crack it). Once it’s cooled, you’re good to go. She’ll love it. I know I would [hint-hint to my husband ;)].

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5. HOMEMADE SCRATCH OFF. Ready to test your luck? Look no further than the homemade scratch off card (by better homes and gardens found here: http://www.bhg.com/holidays/valentines-day/cards/make-a-scratch-off-card-for-valentines-day/?socsrc=bhgfb0117132) This one will take a little more effort and creativity on your part, but she will fall head over heels for you when she sees how much time and thought you put into this gift. Each of the hearts can have things you will do for her such as: breakfast in bed, foot massage, date night of her choice, etc. Personalize it how you wish.

FOR HIM:

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1. HOMEMADE SWEETS. Men love sweets almost as much as women. Chocolate covered stawberries are a guys best friend. Especially if they are homemade, ladies. It’s not difficult. Buy some strawberries and baking chocolate bars, melt the chocolate and dip the berries in, put them on a platter in the fridge and you’re done. Bam. He’ll love ’em…as long as he likes strawberries and chocolate. If not, you might have to re-think this idea and maybe the guy as well. Just kidding.

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2. MANLY GIFT BASKET. You can make this gift very personalized. If you’re dating or married to him you should know his interests, his likes, his preferred beer of choice…the usual. Ok, maybe he doesn’t drink…I don’t know him, you do. So this is a cute way to get a bunch of his favorite things in one gift. It will not only show that you pay attention to what he likes, but it will also be practical in sense because he loves everything in it. Duh.

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3. PERSONALIZED PICTURE FRAME. If you’re a creative crafter, this is the perfect gift to give your man. You could start from scrath, making the frame from piece of scrap wood and then painting it and adding a picture of the two of you. You could also buy a plain wooden frame from Hobby Lobby or any other craft store and design it how you want. It’s your gift, so you can make it as fun and personalized as you want!

4. 52 REASONS YOU LOVE HIM. Why 52 you ask? Because there are 52 weeks in a year…a reason for every week. 365 would be a little tough, but if you can do it…more power to ya! This is really your call on how to display the reason you love your boyfriend/spouce/lover-and-friend. You can do it on the back of playing cards (because there are 52 cards in a deck, how cool!). You could do it in a photo book and add pictures. Be silly and serious with the reasons. He’ll like hearing both.

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5. PERSONALIZED POKER SET. If your man loves poker, this is a perfect gift for him! I know guys like to get together at certain times of the week/month to have poker nights and do manly things, so if that is the case with him, he’ll love this gift! It’s a little on the pricey side, but if you can afford it I think it’d make a great gift nonetheless.

Have fun with these and enjoy!

If you didn’t find a gift that works for your loved one, maybe this at least gave you inspiration for a sweet and thoughtful gift. You can do it.