Forty Faces of the Groom//1920’s Dinner and DIY party ideas

So what I haven’t mentioned in all of these 1920 Bachelorette Party posts is that my friend is marrying the most hilarious, ridiculous person on the planet. And really, that isn’t an exaggeration. Her fiance is a real stitch, always having something to say or comment on, always ready to make a joke and laugh loudly.  So without him coming to this celebration we were all a little down… we wondered what he would have to say about the madness of the night. I knew I wanted to incorporate him some way into the night, but I just didn’t know how. Then, as Ashley and I were  plotting, it came to me, we would use his face on our stir sticks and straws. But it didn’t seem enough of a statement that he would make! I sat on the idea a little longer, refusing to give up because Lord knows he never does.

Then Friday during lunch, as Ashley and I were creating our stir sticks, it came to me, we would also use his face to tell our guests what types of pizzas we were having for dinner. And we would make little bubbles of the smart-ass things he would have to say about our gourmet pizzas (he never understands why we just don’t put bacon and more bacon on them).  Needless, to say, this completely ridiculous addition to our party was the highlight of the night. There were more pictures taken of the groom than anything else. And that lucky bride? Well, I gave her the extras to take back home.

PROJECT ONE with Forty Faces of the Groom::: Food Labels


First, I photo edited his face from a picture. Then cut & pasted it, so twenty faces would fit onto an 8×10 once we printed it out. Then, we were able to cut out his face out and glue it onto these sparkly 1920’s circles. (Yes, It was a little frightening to have 40 of those smiles looking up at us during the project!)

Then, we made conversation bubbles to put his not so politically correct comments on. We attached them to tooth picks and stuck them in the center of the pizzas. (Note: I decided not to put allll the pizzas and comments up— the internet never forgets ;))


^^^ Included::: red sauce with cheddar and mozzarella cheese. Green peppers, pepperoni, and onions. ^^^DSCF8148

^^^Included on this pizza::: my red sauce, fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and kale. ^^^

DSCF8150^^Included on this pizza::: Refried beans in leu of sauce. Green beans, corn, tomatoes and scallions as toppings.^^

(We also had vegan pizza, with hummus and fresh veggies, a “Greek” pizza w/artichokes, tomatoes and kale, a veggie pizza and another Mexican pizza with taco seasoning added to the red sauce.)

PROJECT TWO from Forty Faces of the Groom::: Straws

For the straws, we simply taped the circles onto straws. (We had to add an inappropriate groom comment to label the straws.)


Pretty ridiculous, huh? I wasn’t lying y’all! But if you’re planning a Bachelorette party, this is such a fun way to spice it up a little bit!

1920’s Bachelorette Party

Some Fridays ago, my friends and I hosted a 1920’s bachelorette party at my apartment. Yes, 25 women in my small adobe. It was quite the event! There were clicking heels, clanking glasses and lots of stories to be told. Friday during the day, my friend, Ashley, and I went to town! Once we started decorating, we just couldn’t stop ourselves. Sean rolled his eyes and said we were going a little crazy, but we already knew that. We tried to explain that everyone would appreciate our efforts, ending our conversation with the agreement of gender differences and laughing. In the end, we were happy we went a little crazy. Afterall, wasn’t that the point of the night? DSCF8132DSCF8128DSCF8143DSCF8153DSCF8136DSCF8139DSCF8144

DIY 1920’s Bridal Shower Games

Instead of playing games at my friends 1920’s Bridal Shower, we our bride made a memory box.  Personally, I’m not a big “game player” at parties, so I’m always looking for a way to do something without having to actually “do” it, you know? So, instead of a group game, we set up this little craft-station table (below). We asked people to get a heart from one of the baskets and write marriage advice on it. Then, we asked people to grab a little booklet from the other basket and write their favorite memories of the bride in them. When people were done, they put them both in the cute 1920’s heirloom box in the center of the table.

memory box table

I stopped by Crissy’s house on Sunday night and she had the box sitting out among her things. Together, we pawed through it, her reading the advice and me laughing, and Sean rolling his eyes at us. It’s definitely a sweet little something that she will always be able to hold on to throughout the years. And when she’s mad at her guy, she can open in up and get a little extra advice from her ladies. advice basketmemory basketNow, we’re on to Bachelorette Party planning… There is much fun to be had yet in 2013!


1920’s Wedding Shower

So, this is my best friend. Readers, please meet Crissy.

Crissy opening giftsShe is beautiful and intelligent and every ounce of crazy. She’s my person in life. You know, the best friend who you can’t shake, no matter what. The best friend who calls you first thing in the morning because they’re pissed or laughing. The best friend who can tell you’re upset and makes fun of you until you laugh and realize how ridiculous you are acting. The best friend who knows you; I mean, really knows you.

Anyway, this great friend of mine, Crissy, is getting married this coming New Year’s Eve. But before the snow hits Michigan, our friends and I decided to throw her a 1920’s Bridal Shower. It was a perfect day, with sunshine and a slight breeze, sangria and laughter, and lots of ragtime music playing in the background.

dessert tableCcrissy and daniellecheers sign and tablecard suitcasetable settingsThe spread::: a make your own sandwich appetizer buffet. Because we did the party at two in the afternoon, we wanted people to have lots of light things to munch on. I ordered three types of bread from this great local bakery and picked up some Naan at Costco. Friday night, I furiously rolled all of the ham, turkey & chicken. A mom of our friend also made a great chicken salad spread. We had a plethora of cheeses.  Cut carrots, sweet peppers, cucumbers and tomatoes were also offered. Toppings were mayo, mustard & hummus. To say this least, this was the perfect afternoon snack as we celebrated our friend’s marriage.

The music::: I ordered a CD from the Preservation Hall Jazz Band from i-tunes for our background tunes.

The details::: I used this little machine to cut all of the hearts for the party. Hearts were used as labels for the food, labeling guests glasses, and for guests to write advice to the bride.

Since it was a 1920’s bridal shower theme, we used lots of pearls, ribbons and gold! We found the pearls on the food table @ Hobby Lobby in their Christmas Decor section— score! And that fabulous sparkly CHEERS sign came from Michaels. Each of the letters was on sale for 75 cents! Hooray. Our friend Barb already had that cool window chalk board.

In addition to our centerpieces, I went to the library the morning of the shower and rented books about all things 1920’s. There were fashion books and jazz books, prohibition books and film books, too. It was fun and free way to add a little punch to our centerpieces. Plus, it allowed all of us to plot our outfits for the upcoming 1920’s Bachelorette party!

It was a great party. And we definitely pulled out all of our best tricks for it! There are few better things in life than celebrating someone who really deserves the best. She and her fiance area  walking love story and we can’t wait to continue this 1920’s themed wedding in October at her bachelorette party.


Mason Jar Organizers

Our little kitchen is good for a few things. Like bumping butts while you’re boiling water. And…well… there isn’t too much else that we truly enjoy about our kitchen. It’s a small galley kitchen with a single sink, which means limited counter space and few cupboards. But we’re doing the best we can to organize and use the space we do have to it’s fullest potential. I’m also learning to take deep breaths and channel Sean’s tranquil aura.

When we first moved in, almost one year ago, I converted an old wine box into a shelving unit for all of our dried beans, fruits and seeds. Confession time: I hate grocery shopping. And because of this, we buy pretty much everything in bulk; preserved or dried. And while I absolutely love this method of stocking our kitchen, it also means we have a lot of mason jars filled up and spread all over our kitchen. beans in jarsTo help tame this collection, last week, I decided to make labeled lids for each of them. It was a simple project I wish I’d done a lot sooner. The only supplies I used were scraps from my paper collection. When I was done, I couldn’t believe how such a small project added so much continuity & organization to the area.  all jars angledmason jar lids 2 all jars straight mason jar lids 1Why didn’t I do this sooner, I wonder? Either way, I’m happy I took the short time to do this project and it is already making life much, much easier in our small kitchen. It didn’t make our kitchen larger, but it did bring relief. And we still bump butts when I’m boiling water, but I’ll never complain about that.

DIY Fabric Banner

Two Fridays ago, I started rearranging our common area furniture. This is typical to my compulsive must-rearrange-the-furniture-on-a-regular-basis-nature. But this time I decided to go a little crazy, move more furniture than normal and completely change the flow of our apartment. (Huh, don’t know why I threw out my back…) all before Sean came home from work and could call me a maniac. But I did it! And I absolutely LOVED it. But all of that feng-shui left an empty area over our radiator. And no one likes a lonely nook. So, I decided that this solitary area gave me the perfect excuse to create a fabric banner.Penant AngledNow I must disclaim that making this fabric banner was not as “spur of the moment” as I let on. I actually have been wanting to make a fabric pennant for awhile. But because I had already made a paper pennnat for our entry way, I needed to create one that was really different. After looking around stores and Pinterest for while, I decided that I would make a simple tie pennant– no sewing necessary, and I could upcycle some of my old clothing. So I put on a movie and went to work! PenantAll I did was measure out the length of twine that I wanted my banner to be.

:::Then I cut strips about four inches long from old t-shirts and cardigans. I decided to use three more muted colors, simply because Sean and I already have a lot of bright colors in our living space.

:::Next, all I did was tie the strips, in half, around the twine.

:::I looped the edges to make hanging easier, then rigged it up.

Room shot of Penant

In the end, I really liked the way it looked. I appreciate that it isn’t another piece of artwork hanging squarely over a shelf. I like that it gives a little more dimension to the space and draws the eye to the window. Plus, the tapered and jagged effect of the fabric reminds me in some ways of the edges of Tibetan Prayer Flags…. which I haven’t made, but clearly need to now.

I’ll post a few more pictures of the mess I made two Fridays ago and the great space I ended up with, soon!


Our State Storyboard:: Summer

Each season, I try to change our state storyboard to reflect our current days. How happy I am to see sand & dunes from our first trip to the beach, instead of snow drifts hanging on our storyboard these days! state board 1state board 2state board 3This is the first time that I have used clothes pins to attach pictures. What have I been waiting for? They make it much easier to rearrange photos as I get more developed. And guiltily I admit, I always try to make things as easy for myself as humanly possible.

I love that our storyboard is something people always comment on when they come over.  Having conversation pieces throughout your space helps define areas and make the environment more welcoming, more homey to guest. When people come over and see the state storyboard, they can immediately see who we are and what we enjoy. The board tells the story of our *insert gushy adjective here*life in Michigan. And that story, I have to admit is everything to us.

I wonder what our board will look like next year at this time? How will life be different? Or the same? I can’t wait to see.

ABC Book for Children

When the kids I nanny for turned three years old (where does time go?), I knew just what I would do for them. Instead of toys they would grow out of, I decided to make them a special ABC Book. I had made an Alphabet Book for the little chick I watched in Atlanta years ago, and I was longing to make another for the twins. The idea behind the book was simple: I would compile the photos I had taken over the last two years, organizing them in such a way to fit each letter of the alphabet. After many episodes of How I Met Your Mother, I finally finished and was very excited to share it!

abc bookabc book intro pageA pageC pageh pageK pageThey liked it very much, and I am happy to see them in quiet moments, looking at intently and remembering all the fun experiences we have had together. I firmly believe that nannies have a very important role to play as daily memory keepers. Spending forty hours a week with little ones means that we witness their quirks growing and changing constantly. As they grow, it is easy for us to say, “ohhhh she has always been like that,” and “oh boy, we should have seen that coming! remember when he…” I challenge myself to remember all of my little one’s personalities in special ways. If you haven’t made memory books of sorts for the kids you nanny for, I recommend you do the same! It’s lot’s of fun having something to sit down and look back on together.

Our Welcoming Pennant

Our entrance has been an ongoing project since we moved in almost one year ago. To be honest, it’s been an ongoing project mostly because it has become a storage area for all of the things we want to get rid of. (If anyone wants a loom, let me know!) But walking into a place and being met with junk and bare walls isn’t exactly the first impression I want to share with visitors. So, a few weeks ago, I decided to start this project…slowly by surely, one foot in front of the other… now we are going…

Step One: A Welcome Sign.

Because our walls are concrete and impossible to hang things on, I knew I needed something I would be able to creatively rig up. Also, the wall in our entrance is very long, so I wanted something that could cover the vastness it presents. In the end, I decided I wanted to make a pennant. So I did. And I definitely love it. we love you parttape of signentire welcome signupward angle of welcomeAnd hanging, it still is. Thanks for stopping in! You’re always welcome here.

From Pinterest to Reality #3: My “New” Shutters

Sean and I had an idea to make a mail organizer out of shutters. It was a good idea. A very good idea. But in the end, the idea didn’t pan out as expected. And you know what? That’s okay, too.

I found these shutters at a little shop down the road. The shop is jammed packed with found items. Literally, there are hundreds of things packed into this little shop wall to wall, floor to ceiling. There’s no organization, which I don’t really mind, because with all that stuff, you have to go through it carefully and slowly, so as not to miss anything. When I saw these little shutters, I just had to get them. I was especially happy because they were only $1.50. What’s not to like about that? original shuttersshutters orginal 2

They were a little rough, as you can see, but I had a vision. After some lots of cleaning, I decided to paint them orange to help bring in the orange of the dresser we painted a few months ago. Once they were painted, I really liked the way they looked: a little Brady Bunch-esque, a little vintage— my favorite combination! But I also thought that they were just a little too cute to clutter up with mail. So, I gave them a prominent place on our recently organized shelf. shutters finished 2shutters finished 1

I really like the simple statement they make in the place. And even though they weren’t quite what I originally wanted, I am very pleased with them. I guess it just goes to show that sometimes our best ideas are really mistakes, and sometimes these mistakes end up being our favorites!