June 21, 2016

Graduation celebrations and open house decorations

It's been a whirlwind of milestones at our house and now that we are officially past Emma's open house and her graduation ceremonies, I can share pictures. 
Emma has always been fascinated with maps.  In fact, the majority of her bedroom walls are covered in maps.
Chris asked his elementary teacher colleagues if they had any large classroom maps that he might use for Emma's graduation party.   Several maps that were in school storage were magically made available and we quickly got to work covering our garage walls with painters drop cloths and maps.
One of the maps was used to gather signatures and inspirational quotes from guests and she will be bringing that to college with her next year.
Luckily the weather cooperated and despite the extreme heat, we didn't have any rain or wind to content with.  I can also add tent construction to my "party planner" title. I honestly think it was a miracle that Chris and I were able to put this tent up ourselves.
In case anyone is wondering where Emma is going to college next year, here's a big hint.  At this point, she's declared Social Work as a major (following in her dad's footsteps).
Her official move-in date is August 23rd and we are all excited and nervous about the upcoming changes (especially Josie).
Congratulations, Emma.   We were so happy to celebrate your special day.  

 

June 13, 2016

Nancy Drew birthday party (part 2)

I survived Emma’s graduation open house (that’s a post for another day) but I did want to get a follow-up post about Josie’s Nancy Drew mystery birthday party on the blog.   In case you missed it, my previous blog post shows all kinds of Nancy Drew party decorations. 
When the invitations were mailed out, we had told the girls that they would need to help solve the mystery of Josie’s missing birthday present.  With it being a slumber party, I knew we would never several different things to do to fill up the evening.



The party kicked off with the girls completing an “observation game”. I filled a tray with random items from our kitchen junk drawer. They were allowed to look at the tray for 1 minute, then I took the tray away and using their detective kit notepads/pens they had to list how many items they could remember.
They also had to tell us the exact colors too of the various items. The girls really got into this observation game and it's amazing how many random items we had stashed in our kitchen junk drawer.

During dinner, the doorbell rang and a telegram was left on the front porch. The telegram kicked off their series of clues.
In case any of you want to do your own mystery, here are the riddles that I used. As the girls solved each riddle, they ran to that object in the house and they would find the next clue.   Each girl was given a chance to solve the riddle, but they could ask for help.  

Clue
Some people take me in the morning, others take me in the evening, but one thing you should know - that when I'm 'taken', I don't really go anywhere?
What am I? (Shower)

Clue
What has a ring, but no finger? What am I? (Phone)

Clue
I never ask questions, but always answered. What am I? (Doorbell)

Clue 
What has to be broken before you can use it? What am I? (Egg)

Clue 
I don’t speak, can’t hear or speak anything, but I will always tell the truth. What am I? (Mirror)

Clue 
I begins with a T.
I ends with a T
and mostly I am full of T.

What am I? (Teapot)

Clue
When I was invented, you can looking through the walls. What am I? (window)

Clue
I’m full of keys, but I can’t open any door. What am I? (Piano)

Clue
I am made of rock and shell.
I gather in millions by ocean, sea and stream.

What am I? (Sandbox)

Josie’s wrapped birthday present (it was a watch) was left inside the sandbox and I also found a bunch of detective kits at the Dollar Tree for each child and those were left in the sandbox for the girls.  
The girls also got to put their detective kit flashlights to use playing "find the bomb". To make the bomb, I wrapped 3 empty paper towels with a rubber band and attached them to our mini meat grilling thermometers. When it got dusk outside, the girls were divided into teams and each team took a turn hiding the bomb in our front yard. The other teams could use their flashlights to find the hidden bomb. Using a kitchen timer, each team had 3 minutes to find the hidden bomb.
Before bed, the girls then watched the 2007 (Emma Roberts) Nancy Drew movie.
I'd love to tell you that they all went to bed really good, but I was up several times during the night (including 4am) reminding them to go to sleep. I had also forgotten just how loud 9 & 10 year olds can be.  Wow!!  All in all, a successful slumber birthday party and I can't believe my baby is now in double digits! 

 Happy 10th birthday, Josie!  We love you so very much.  

June 2, 2016

Nancy Drew birthday party

Over the last few weeks, we've had Emma's 18th birthday, my birthday, our 24th wedding anniversary and a slew of graduation events.
This week we are celebrating Emma's official commencement graduation ceremony from high school, my parent's 50th wedding anniversary and I'm hosting a Nancy Drew themed birthday party for Josie's upcoming 10th birthday. 
Yes, I'm officially crazy.  Yes, I've been burning the midnight oil trying to squeeze everything in while also working.
Back in March, during National Reading month, Josie was asked to dress up as a favorite  book character and she enjoyed being Nancy Drew.
When she asked to have a Nancy Drew Mystery birthday party, I was thrilled.
Josie's guests will receiving detective kits to help solve the case of Josie's missing birthday present.
Most of the party supplies came from the Dollar Tree and with the help of Google images and a load of glue sticks, I came up with some fun mystery decorations.
Josie's party is being held Friday night and I'll try and do a follow-up post that includes the mystery and the clues.  
And I promise I will get back to visiting blogs again once I get through Emma's graduation open house.  Until then, I'm riding the crazy train!  Be well, friends!

May 28, 2016

Getting crafty for graduation

We've been busy getting our house and yard in order for Emma's senior graduation open house.  Last weekend, we hauled 15 yards of mulch.
It's my least favorite thing to do, but the flower beds and our backyard woods do look all nice and tidy again.

Emma wanted something different to use for picture boards to display at her upcoming open house.    Chris found a couple of screen doors at a local thrift store and after painting them, he removed the screen and replace it with chicken wire.

Tiny clothes pins found at the Dollar Tree attach the photos to the chicken wire.
The doors are hinged together so that they can stand up.

Because I needed a glue gun fix, I ended up making a bunting to hang across the doors.  I think it turned out really neat and Emma has been having fun going through photo albums to find pictures to hang on her doors.

Although she doesn't graduate until June 2nd, her school held a senior assembly this past Thursday.  What a beautiful event and the weather was perfect for outdoor photos.  

It's nonstop celebrations right now.
 

May 20, 2016

A new holiday for my year-round tree!

My long time followers know that I have a year-round tree that stays up in my sunroom.
 In years past during the month of May, the tree has been decorated with various birthday themes.
This year, my tree is celebrating a brand new holiday...Emma's senior graduation!
We're so proud of all her accomplishments and wonderful friends.  

Between all her sports, marching band, student committees and retail job, she's been a busy and successful young lady.
Graduation officially happens June 2nd but until then, we've been celebrating all sorts of special senior events.
We're so proud of you, Emma!