Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tiny Prints Photo Contest

I know... two posts in a row about Tiny Prints but I really can't help myself. I remember when Maddie was born and we thought she was the cutest baby around.. then she got older and we thought she was the cutest toddler.. well, you get my point. We all think we have the cutest photos and here's a great opportunity to show off your little cutie!

Tiny Prints is holding a Talent Search Contest.

Prizes awarded for:

Cutest Baby (0-2 years old)
Cutest Kid (3-10 years old)
Cutest Family
Cutest Couple
Cutest Pet

As a reader of Park Talk, you have November 21st to enter your photos before the general public votes. You can enter via Facebook or their website.

Enter now for a chance to win the grand prize of $1,000 cash and a $500 Tiny Prints Gift Certificate. I think the best prize (besides the cash!) is the chance to be in their 2012 marketing campaign. Can you imagine?!

Good luck to you and all your sweet ones!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Holiday Cards- Tiny Prints

So hard to believe it's that time again, but just take a walk into any store and it's for sure, Christmas is coming! That means it's time to get working on my holiday cards.

Throughout the year I took advantage of several offers for free personalized cards from Tiny Prints. All the recipients were really impressed with the quality, plus I love receiving cards that are personalized and/or have pictures of people I love. Those cards are guaranteed to NEVER be thrown in the trash!

Because Tiny Prints has been so generous with their offers, I decided to check out their website to see what they were offering for holiday cards.

Wow! Now I'm confused because there are really just too many choices!

Here are a few of my favorites:

Retro Wishes: Wave
I really love the fact that the back of their flat cards have decorative backgrounds instead of just white. You can always print your family's yearly review on a sticker and center on the back. Another detail that I really LOVE is rounded corners! I think they make everything look more special.

Lasting Links
This card is just adorable in either the green or blue. That's so cool that you can change the coloring on some of their cards. So many times I've fallen in love with a design but it doesn't work with my photo.

Shared Joy
I thought this card is great for someone that may not have a traditional "holiday" photo. Not sure what I was thinking but we're wearing black and pink in our latest family photo.. not exactly great on a "Jolly Old St Nicolas" Red background.

Traditional Tidings
I thought sending out ornament cards is genius! Wouldn't it be great if everyone did and your tree could be filled with family and friends?! If I received one, I know it would get saved and used from year to year.

What about you, have you thought about your holiday cards yet? Know which photos you're going to use? Time to get going because before you know it, it'll be Thanksgiving and your mailbox is going to start filling up with cards!

Any cute ideas for displaying your cards?
Because we don't have a mantel, I usually do what my mom did when we were growing up.. hang a thick holiday ribbon on a wall and pin the cards to it as they arrive. Sometimes the ribbon ends up going up and around doorways or from the ceiling to the floor. I'd love to hear what you do in your house.

Card Photos
This year we had family portraits done at a studio. Last year I just took Maddie in the background and got some super cute shots of her. Guess that means you don't have to spend a lot of money on your photos. Some of my favorites are candid shots of families or couples at a party or sharing something they all love to do. I guess that's when the smiles are most genuine. That and I'm a sucker for close ups of the kids. They're the ones who change from year to year and that people really want to see, right?!

Whatever you decide to do, I would highly recommend checking out Tiny Prints. With so many choices, there's no way you won't find something you love!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween Party

On October 21st we attend our annual MOMS Club Halloween party. It was so much fun seeing all of our little cheeky monkey's friend's wearing their costumes. A few weeks prior, the hostess contacted me to work on decor. She didn't have any guidelines, just said "go for it".... here's what I came up with.

(You may click on any images to enlarge to see details)

One of my favorites is water bottle labels. I overheard one mom say she was sad she didn't get one... aw! A few on the table really make an impact and although they are covered by packing tape (little secret) they aren't officially waterproof so don't submerge. Instead keep cool and place out just before the party What I've found is most people don't mind (and some prefer) room temperature water.

Fry Boxes... kids and adults love them. They're easy to hold and you can use them for almost anything... little sandwiches with the crusts cut off, popcorn, or in this case, every two year old's favorite, GOLDFISH!

This Trick or Treat banner was really fun and could easily be cut out and pasted. I purchased sparkly card stock to give it a little pizzaz! This could easily be folded up and tucked away for next year. I love the look a food table with banner behind it. Everyone always hangs out there so why not decorate the walls too?! Random Bats and witches were also taped around the room.

My snack contribution was cupcakes. Normally I would leave that to the baking moms (and I did leave it to the grocery store) but I really wanted to use the cupcake toppers that I created. What a great way to again, a personal touch whether it's for a birthday or a MOMS Club Halloween party. Starbucks stir sticks cut on half are the perfect size for a cupcake topper!

When I saw this "Boo" "Spooky" banner online I couldn't way to try it out. I still can't figure out how it only cost her $2 but I did have fun with my first paper/felt project. First I cut out all the letters and ghosts bats and corn on card stock. Then I hot glued them to felt on the wrong side and cut around. My glue gun broke (boo) but I managed to get the project finished and sewn together with a bright yellow floss. I almost wanted to keep this one for myself! It was a lot of work to work with the felt and all the sewing and probably could have just as easily been done in all paper and tied together with colorful ribbon but I'm glad I tried it because the results were very cute!

I've been searching high and low for the creator of this SVG (if it's yours please contact me so I can add credits). I'm a HUGE fan of word art, sometimes called Subway art. Usually I just print them out and frame but I found a cut file that I could use with the Cricut that cut just beautifully. I added a little MOMS Club in a slime font to fill up my frame. oooohhhhh!!!

I did create a fun Pin the Nose on the Pumpkin game but with all the candy and action, we never got around to playing it. I did see a version of this at Target for $5 or so that would be just as fun as a homemade one. But this was a pretty easy project and could be done last minute. Just cut out yellow triangles and write name before they play. Glue dots would make easy work for pinning too.

This Front Door Welcome Sign was a combination of two free SVG files found online. I used sparkle and matte card stock that had a fantastic result. Witch Legs and Witch Silhouette The text was created in SCAL and cut out on black card stock.

As you see, working in personalized items with store bought things can really give you a big wow factor and impress your friends. Although these days most things are made using my Cricut but every now again, I cut by hand. Small scissors are the key to accurate cuts. Printing things out using your word processing program (flip text before printing) and then cutting out doesn't always take that much more time.

If you're looking for decor for your next party, start by searching online for ideas or just contact me, I have TONS! :)

More Closet Dividers

After giving the jungle closet dividers to my girlfriend's daughter for her shower, she contacted me to make two sets for her to give to friends that were expecting.

One set was to match the NoJo bedding Zoom Cars link and the other was turtles (no bedding specified). While I don't own the rights to the NoJo Cars and patterns used for the bedroom sets, I did my best to match and create. It's a bit of mix matched patterns but I think they turned out cute.

The turtles set was a little easier because I just created two paper patterns and used on the turtle and the backs. At first I had smaller eyes on the turtles but something didn't look quite right. After changing them, I realized they were much cuter!

It may seem with so few posts I haven't been active but I've been EXTREMELY busy working on projects for my soon to be 3 year old's birthday party... It going to be amazing (if I do say so myself). Lots and lots of projects that I hope will impress the party-goers.

I also worked on party decor for a MOMS Club party that I'll post about next.


Friday, August 26, 2011

DIY Closet Dividers - Personalized Baby Shower Gift

Look what I made!!

The second I received an invite to a friend's daughter's baby shower I knew I wanted to create something personal. When my own little one was born, I was so grateful for the baby clothes, blankets, and all the necessities a newborn baby calls for but the gifts that meant the most were the personalized ones. They're the ones sitting on her shelf or on the wall and not packed away for the next lucky recipient.

I found out from her mom that she's really excited about putting together her little guy's room and oh how I remember those days where I would just go sit in there and adjust this little burp cloth just so to make everything p-e-r-f-e-c-t. Of course, then she came home and reality set in, lol... rookie mistake!

Anyhow her guy is getting a jungle theme Lambs & Ivy- Cocoa room. A really fun idea hit me... Closet Dividers. If I know my girlfriend (the baby's grandma) this kid is going to have clothes! They'll need some way to keep them organized. The dividers go between hangers to tell you what sizes you have. I can't tell you how many times I found an outfit in Miss Monkey's closet that still had tags but she had outgrown because I forgot it was there. It's a shame to waste a cute outfit!

I've always wanted to try cutting chip board with the Cricut. I did a little research and realized cereal boxes work really well. So, using Sure Cuts A Lot's basic shapes I created a rounded rectangle 3.5" x 9.125" with a 2.75" circle and a slit to fit over the bar. The cereal box was easy to cut (just did a double cut- blade at 6 and max pressure/speed). Then cut a cute green plaid paper using layout. I didn't want to leave the back unfinished so I found a cute animal pattern in the same stack.

I used a thin layer of Modge Podge to adhere the paper on one side to the cereal box and let it dry, then I did the other side. (don't forget to flip your template if you plan to cut paper to fit the back side). I found stacking heavy books on top helped to keep them from curling/warping as they dried.

Paper Used: Animal Crackers Stack  by DCWV, and random scraps for the animals.
Cricut Cartridge: Create a Critter
Font for numbers: Palatino
Animal sizes
Lion- 2.25"
Monkey- 2.75"
Giraffe- 4"
Zebra- 2.5"
Elephant- 2"
Small grass- 1.25"
Large grass- 1.5"

I got to use my new Sizzix Texture Boutique to add a little embossing to the lion's mane. I just received the Create a Critter cartridge in the mail (Yay Sarah! She's the actual owner of the Cricut that I use so now "we" own this super cute cartridge) and couldn't wait to start cutting. I've only really used SCAL2 so I was a little afraid to figure out the cartridge buttons and sizes but using a piece of white card stock was super helpful to figure out my cuts before using the more expensive card stock.

I did make one extra (a total of 6) but didn't label it or add an animal yet.. what do you think 18 months and an alligator? Leave me a comment if you have a cute idea.

I hope they love the special gift I made for her little guy! The shower isn't until September so now I can relax a little and get back to my daughter's birthday party plans.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Paper Compulsions: Butterfly award

Jani from Paper Compulsions gave me a butterfly award! My very first blogger award, wow! Thanks for making my day Jani!

Check out her blog below

Paper Compulsions: Butterfly award: Yippee! My new blog friend, Eva from Eva's Scraps N'Cards , gave me an award. I came across her blog a couple of weeks ago and absolutely...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Lawson Family Farewell Party

This is one party that makes me sad to talk about... a dear friend and her family moved to Kansas and wanted to get together with friends at a local park to say goodbye. They're very excited to start their new life and wanted to convey to their friends their newfound love for Kansas. She asked me to help with some ideas and here's what we came up with!

This sign was created to show the love they have for their new home. Look closely and you'll see the Map in the Kansas shape is actually from their new town! (details my friends... of course nobody else noticed, but I did!)

Kids young and old love these photo props. They're a great way to break the ice at a party where not all your guests know each other. Ideas: cutouts of glasses, mustaches, a dry erase board/chalkboard to write a message in the photo or an empty photo frame. Backdrops are always fun to create a classic photo booth but not necessary... especially at the park!

Here they are in action!

I created three different postcards with the family's new address so friends can send them updates on their summer and keep in contact. What a great addition to a memory book and hopefully she has some mail waiting to greet them at their new place.

A fun activity for the kids while everyone else is having heartfelt talks :)

Not just for weddings. A great way for friends to make sure their well wishes are felt well after the party.

Something the hostess created, turned out super cute!

Just received word today that the family made it safely to their new town in Kansas. I know they already have a huge network of friends to get them settled and I'm really excited to hear how things are going. Best of luck guys! Southern CA already misses you terribly!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Pepperidge Farms Fish Bread

Have you seen these yet? Pepperidge Farms has a fish shaped bread out.. how cute would this be for your next pool party? I bet the kids would gulp them up!