Saturday, April 30, 2011


After 2 full days of cupcake making, party prep and a fun day long party, I am pretty tired.. 

On Friday I made 4 dozen chocolate cupcakes because my son needed 3 dozen for his class.    This  picture was taken before frosting them. 

I ran 3 dozen cupcakes to school only for him to tell me that 6th graders don't want to be seen with their mom at lunch.  It was fine in 5th grade but he is older now.. waaaaaaah!    I reminded him several times to bring back mom's cupcake pans only for him to forget them at school.  

Last night while at Rs house to decorate we made some more cupcakes but could not decorate them because she did not have food coloring and she is not near enough to a store to make a store run worth while.    I decorated these when I got to her house this afternoon. 

This morning I made 3 dozen mini cupcakes.  I was planning on using my cake pop maker but we somehow manage to short it out last night.   When plugging it in, I saw a spark.  I think that might have something to do with the short.  When I tried to make some cake pops at her house last night, the bottom half worked but not the half.    The mini cupcakes were simple to make and tasted just like the cake pops. 

We also decorated as much as we could Friday night. Good thing because there would not have been time to today before the party.     I will show more pictures in a detailed post on Sunday.  Operation Birthday was a big success!  
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Friday, April 29, 2011

Today Only FREE shipping at

I just saw this deal on Totally Target.  Today only you  will get FREE shipping when you use the code WISH.  5% of  all  sales from today, up to $50,000' will be donated to the Make a Wish Foundation.  You can shop here.

Also if you go through Ebates you can get 5% cash back.
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Royal Wedding and other things..

Did you watch the Royal Wedding?    I did by accident.  LOL!   I had left the TV on in case I woke up during the night.   I woke up just as Will and Kate were being pronounce husband and wife.  Perfect timing!  I saw the kiss while getting my daughter ready for school.   I saw recaps of all the other things, so I feel like I didnt miss a thing.  

Today is my son's 12th birthday and my friends big milestone birthday.   As you can imagine the last minute to do list for the day  is long.   

I am making and delivering 3 dozen cupcakes to my sons school before 1 pm.
I am finishing the flower pot favors
I am making the cupcake stand
I am packing all of my supplies/decorations  to take to her house tonight
I will be wrapping my son's presents that he has already asked me if he could open. 

Later tonight
we will be decorating and setting up
we will be making more cupcakes and cake pops
we will be doing other food prep so there is not a lot to do tomorrow.

I might not post much in the next 48 hrs but I will be sharing lots of pics of Operation Birthday Weekend soon!
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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Flower Pot Favors

I made flower pot favors for the Garden Themed party that we are having for Operation Birthday.   I first had the idea when I found 3 pk mini flower pots at the Dollar Store a few weeks ago. 

Each flower pot is 2-3 inches high and about 2 inches wide. 

I painted the flowers freehand, but you could lightly draw a flower on the pot before painting if desired.   I first painted the bottom color of each flower in either pink, yellow or purple.  I started with one petal and worked my way around until I had a flower that looked like..  

I liked the look of the extra paint because it gave the flowers texture. 

I didnt realized until I downloaded my pics that I used different colors as examples.  I worked on painting a little bit at a time over 2 days.    After the base flower was dry,  I added a smaller flower in a cooridinating color.     

When that layer was dry,  I painted then center and a few small lines. 

The next step is to use green tissue paper to make the grass.   I found green tissue paper on clearance at Target but they also have it at the dollar store for only $1 a package.  I used a bowl that was about 6 inches across and traced around it  for my circle. 

Make small snips all around the circle. 
Place the circle inside the pot and arrange it so it mimics the look of grass growing out of the pot. 

Add your favorite candy.   I do not have the candy on hand that we plan on using so I had to "borrow" some from one of my kids recent Awana carnival bags..   

Each flower pot favor cost less than .50 each to make. 

Make sure to check out the my linky party page to see all the great websites I am sharing on, including the Sundae Scoop on I heart Naptime, Skip tp My LouTodays Creative 
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Vgs deals this week..

I had another great day at VGs..  I went in just to pick up a few sale items. 

2 Cheez its on sale $2.50.  I had two $1 coupons that doubled, final price .50  each

2 Xtra laundry detergents on sale $2.88, $1.88 for Yes reward email members.  I had two .50 coupons that doubled,  final price .88 each 

2 boxes of slow cooker liners $2.59 each.  I had two $1 coupons that doubled, final price .59 each  

Sara Lee Chocolate Pie on sale $3.  I had .75 coupon that doubled, final price $1.50. 

2 boxes of Fiber Plus Eggos $3.39.  I had two $1 coupons that doubled, final price $1.39 each.

Cereal Deal 
Buy 4 General Mills cereal at $2.69 each and get back two $2.25 coupons on your next 2 gallons of milk.   VGs also has a milk program where you get the 7th one for FREE when you buy 6.
I used two $1 off 2 coupons that doubled.  The cereal was $1.69 each, plus I got back $4.50. 

I used $19.50 in coupons and saved $7.18 in sales.  I only spent $17.84 for about 60% savings.. I would check on the calculator, but it is upstairs and I dont feel like going up to get it right now..  LOL! 
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Meijer Deals this week..

Today R and I went shopping for the party.   I also bought my own groceries for the week.   Meijer is having an excellent 99 cent sale with many products on sale. 

Buy 3 Capri Sun at $1.97 each get a coupon for a FREE Nabisco Multi Pack on your next trip.  

2 gallons of water for the turtle and fish tank .87 each

1/2 gallon of Smart Balance milk on sale $2.99. Used $2 coupon,  final price .99

bottle of Meijer brand veggie oil $1.74

2 boxes of Pillsbury cake mix (for sons cupcakes!)  on sale .99 each

2 jars of Pillsbury frosting  on sale $1.39.  I used $1 off 2 coupon, final price .89 each

Bag of Meijer chips for sons lunches, on sale $2

4 boxes of Pizza rolls on sale .99 each.  I used two .40 off 2 coupons that doubled, final price .59 each

3 boxes of Michelinas on sale .99 each

2 containers Breakstones cottage cheese on sale $2.50.  I used $1 off 2 Meijer Meal Box coupon, final price $2 each. 

4 cans Red Gold tomatoes on sale .99 each.  I used two $1 off 2 coupons, final price .50 each

2 tubs of Country Crock margerine on sale $1.34. I used two .40 coupons that doubled, final price .84 each

1 loaf of Aunt Millies Homestyle bread on sale $1.39

2 bags Haribo gummy bears on sale .99 each.  I had two ..30 coupons that doubled, final price .39 each

Smithfield bacon on sale $2.50

3 Hormel Kids compleat meals on sale $1.50.  I used two $1 off coupons and one $1 off 2 Meijer Meal box coupon.   Final price .50 each  PLUS got a FREE gallon of milk when you buy 3.   (technically made money on that deal!)

mini bella mushrooms on sale .99

baby carrots on sale .99

strawberries on sale .99

grapes .99 a pound

Dole bag salad on sale .99

zuchinni on sale .99 lb..

I realized that I forgot to use my $3 off  your next order coupon after I left the store.   It is good until 5/6 so thats okay.  Today I used $16.41 in coupons/promotions and $22.36 in sale.  I saved $38.77 and spent $45.03 which is really good since many items did not have coupons. 
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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Despicable Me Party Ideas

Check out these adorable Minion cupcakes  by Confessions of a Cookbook Queen  . Any fan of the movie would just adore eatting  these.   Make sure to check out her wonderful tutorial here.

Emilehomemade  expanded on the minion cupcakes with some other food ideas right out of the movie.   She also has great  ideas for invitations, decor. and games.  I really LOVE her idea for the minion bowling game  that you can see here

Obsessively Stitching        show how you can make minion wall deocr and T Shirts. Even if you dont have a party these would be fun crafts to do with your children.  You see her blog here .

and how about these super cute  Minion Twinkie Cakes by Nicole from The Party Animal.      She has a very detailed tutorial  that you must check out  here.  I think I might make these just because even though we are not personally  having a Despicable Me party.  (I am still trying to talk my very soon to be 12 yr old to do SOMETHING instead of just plain old chocolate cupcakes..  LOL!)

This theme would be great for kids of all ages. 
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Nature Party Ideas for the Classroom

A friend of mine recently asked  me if I had any nature party ideas that should could use for an end of the year party in her daughters classoom..   I have been so busy the last few weeks, I just realized that I still needed to come up with some for her.    When I think of nature,  I think of plants and animals.    What is nice about nature is that there are just so many ways you can bring nature into your party. 

These bird nests will probably take too long for a class party,  but I love how realistic the brown looks.  I know that a kindergarten class at out school made these so all ages could make them.    You can find the directions  at

This bird nest is even quicker and easier to make. It can be found on

If you dont not want to make a fake birdnest, how about something that helps the real  birds  in nature.

You can make homemade birdseed treats.   I did not find a direct link but I know instructions are on the internet. 

If you would like to help real birds make their nests, maybe try and make a nest bag from

I found this compost cake on  and thtough it could be fun depending on how you go with your theme. 

How about these bug cupcakes from

If you would like to play a themed Bingo game, you can print your own game cards  at dtkl-cards Some of the themes that are a available are flowers, spring and earth day. 

Another game could be some sort of fishing game where you have a pole with a string and try to catch a fish, or a treat etc..

If you would like to play a pin the tail type of game, you can do variations like  pin the wing on the bug, pin the apple on the tree, pin the flower on the stem etc. 

Some snack ideas that would be good in the classroom, would be food made from nature like carrots,  strawberries, grapes, and apples. 

What is nice about doing a nature party is there are so many things in nature that you can chose from and so many different ways you can go with a theme.  You could make your party  all about bugs,  all about growing seeds,  all about being green or  many, many more.
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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Leftover Ham?

Do you have hame left over from Easter? I like to make a great casserole recipe that is perfect for those leftovers.    I found the reipe a few years ago in  Kraft Food and Family.   The original recipe calls for peas.  I have used peas but it is also good with broccoli.  We used broccoli today because I had 4 bags in the freezer and I could not find my one bag of frozen peas.  

Mix 2 cups of uncooked riced, 1 can of Cream of Mushroom soup, 1/4 cup of Miracle Whip and 2 cups milk in a casserole pan. 

Add about 6 oz of ham cups.  I  think the amount of ham you use can be changed to your preference.  I cut up two slices of ham for our casserole. 

Add 2 cups of peas or broccoli.. Again I feel the amount can be changed to your preference and still turn out great. 

Cover with foil and bake in a 425 degree oven for 20 minutes. 

Uncover and add your cheese.   The original recipe calls for 1/2 cup cheddar cheese.  Personally I do not think that is enough and I add  about a cup.   Put back in oven and bake 10 mins more. 

This casserole is a cheesy, creamy mix of flavors that my whole family loves.  
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Planet Whoopie Pies

Sugar Swings has a  fun idea that would be perfect for a space themed party.  It might also be a fun way to teach your children the planets.   I love how colorful her yummy whoopie pies turned out to be. Make sure to check out her tutorial and science lesson here.
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Monday, April 25, 2011

Operation Birthday- In the home stretch!

Well we are in the home stretch!  Only 6 more days until our special birthday party.   As you can imagine I have been very busy here.

Can you tell what this is?   With a a lot of glue and some  flowers...

I now  have two partially finished topiaries.  I am waiting to add the moss and ribbon until after I move them to the party site. 

These are painted and glued together, but also not yet complete..  Hmm, what will they turn out to be? 

Still more painting to do.  I have half of the mini flower pots started. 

Stay tuned to see how it all turns out!
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Tip of the Day

I just saw a tip on the Nate Berkus show that I NEED TO DO RIGHT NOW!   Peter Walsh, the organizing and decluttering guru, had a great idea on how to keep receipts under control.  He suggests getting an accordian file with 12 slots, one for each month.  When you bring home a recipt put it in the file for that month.   If you need to find a receipt, it will be easy to find because  they are all in ONE PLACE.   Keep the recipts in the file and if after on years time you no longer need to receipt, throw it out.       I so need to do this because I have receipts everywhere.   Going to get my accordian file the next time I go to the store.  
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Royal Wedding Party Ideas

The Royal Wedding is just around the corner!    I found some really fun ideas if you want to celebrate the big day.  

How about this Union Jack fruit pizza   from Betty Crocker.   They have an entire page of Royal Wedding party ideas here.

Woman's Day has a list of ideas presented on the Today show  here.

Make a Princess Kate paper doll  here at .

How about some Royal Wedding printables from Tip Junkie.   I love the photos of her Royal Wedding party ideas. 
Whatever you decide to do, it will be a day to remember.
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Target Easter Clearance

Target was a party planning mom's dream this morning.  =)  Whenever you can get Wilton baking items for 50% off it is a GOOD day!  My store is picked over early, so I knew I would have little chance of these items making it to 75%. 

Here are some of the goodies that I found. 

These cupcake pans have lids!  I like them because they make transportting cupcakes much easier..  Normally $9.99 each, today $4.99 each. 

I found a mini shape cake pan,  egg cookie pan and a bunny whoopie pie pan, regularly $8.99,  for $4.49 each.

The bunny cake pan and the cookie cutter set were both only $2.99, regularly $5.99.

I really liked this spring tablecloth that was only $2.49,  regularly $4.99

Betty Crocker Rich and Creamy Spring Frosting only .87 each, regulary $1.74
Pillsbury Spring Cake Mix only .84, regularly $1.68
Confetti Sprinkles only $1.49, regularly $2.99
Wilton pink glitter gel $2.12, regularly $3.04
Kraft bunny marshmellows only .59 regularly $1.19

I found these bowls in the kitchen section on clearance for only .88! These are the perfect size for dips. 
Candy was only 30% so I waited on that.  I hope to find a few things we can use for Operation Birthday!
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