I have one sister.
But oh what an incredible sister she is!
She's my big sister, and seriously one of the most gorgeous ladies you'll ever see. She stands over 6 feet tall, but still insists on wearing high heels on top of that. So whenever I go to give her a hug, I end up with a face full of belly button or chest. She's obsessed with bacon, and is soaked to the bone in the Crossfit world of exercise.
Ashley's a strong woman, and has been through so much with multiple miscarriages and her husband being in Iraq for more than 3 years of their marriage. Nonetheless, she has pushed through, stayed strong, and on Christmas she surprised my family with a blessing of an announcement: a beautiful baby girl on the way.
This past weekend we were able to do something we've only dreamed about: celebrating a little one coming into their family. We couldn't be more excited, and I know she's going to grow into motherhood just beautifully.
Again, normally I only do food on my blog, but as you know if you've been a follower for a while, I like to share the party stuff I do. Here's just a few details of Saturday's baby shower:
I created this invitation using PicMonkey and found the little rhyme floating around on Pinterest. I love the look of subway art, and wanted to use all the fun (and almost overused/abused on blogland) fonts they had to offer. Ashley's daughter's nursery is pink, grey, and white, so we couldn't help but use the same!
Earlier last week I spray painted the heck out of some of my glassware. It really works! They looked just like milk glass, and the beautiful white is such a clean look. I couldn't wait to use some of my new white dishes for the table during the shower - especially the cake stand.
We hosted the baby shower in my Mom's beautiful backyard (where we had our wedding reception almost 6 years ago actually). We set the table up on her back porch in the shade. Beautiful vines of little preemie grapes covered the front end of the white awning. My Mom has such a wonderfully green thumb, and visiting her backyard frequently is always a highlight of my summertime.
The week before the party, I made a bunch of little banners. These tassel banners are hot right now on Pinterest, and I couldn't wait to try making them. As soon as the Manchild went to sleep, the crafting began. The wonderful thing about these tassels is that they were super inexpensive to make. I purchased the tissue paper from the dollar store, and I had the yarn leftover from a previous project. I sliced slits in the paper, keeping about an inch uncut in the middle, rolled the middle, twisted, glued, and threaded the hoops with the thick yarn. I thought it added a touch of celebration, but sweet softness to the usually bare front end of the table.
Instead of the usual triangle banner, the tides have moved on over to the double pointed banner. I looked everywhere for grey and white striped paper to use, but couldn't find it anywhere. So I used grey paper, and glued on white stripes. Worked just as well, and added great contrast to the pink, darker grey, and damask print on the other flags. Again, I used the thick white yarn for threading. Ashley loved it so much, she's going to try to use it in her nursery! (another plus towards using the nursery colors for the shower theme).
For the food, we wanted to go simple, but elegant. We used clear cutlery with pink and grey/white polka dotted napkins. We hulled out three giant watermelons with a melon baller, and placed three melons per half kabob skewer. It was the perfect little serving, and looked so gorgeous when all lined up on the white plate.
Originally I was going to use pink and white peonies. Unfortunately, they were super expensive - even if they were at the tail-end of being-in-season. There was a wonderful woman in my neighborhood with a few perfect bushes in her front yard, but they bloomed early, and were pretty limp by the time the shower came around. I felt defeated, and had no idea what we were going to do for flowers (I even checked the fake ones at the craft store: $16.99 for one stem).
My Mom saved the day with these gorgeous flowers! The second I walked in, they were on her table in this huge vase. I loved them even more than the peonies. They added great height, and were such an elegant touch to the table.
We just had to have the straws - even if they didn't go so well with the water bottles. That didn't even phase us. They were too dang cute to pass up. I placed them into this darling pink pail I found at the dollar store.
Oh these water bottles. We decided early on that we wanted them to have the cute labels. I procrastinated making them, and wanted to design them online with words, etc. But I think these turned out much better than I previously pictured. I purchased the pink/white damask paper from the craft store, and a few yards of tulle from Walmart (super cheap there).
Halfway through making them, though, I realized I was cutting the strips of paper too short to wrap around the bottles! Quickly, I used the leftover paper from the double-pointed banner and added a little strip on the back to hold it all together. It turned out kind of unique, and I loved the look.
The tulle bows were made with just slicing off pieces of tulle, scrunching them in the middle, and tying them off with shiny gift wrapping ribbon.
Dessert, oh that dessert...
I turned to one of my favorite cupcake bloggers for this recipe, and IT WAS DYNAMITE. I'll be sharing the recipe, and more pictures later this week. Let's just say there's a bit of cherry filling, vanilla cake mix, white chocolate ganache, cocoa buttercream, and fresh cherries involved...
If you've seen my son's UP birthday party from this past March, you'll know that I love having things floating in the air all over the place. This time, I wanted to hang paper cranes. It was so whimsical, and added such a fun touch to the party (plus it filled up that empty space above the table). I had NO idea how to make paper cranes, so thanks to a couple youtube videos, I quickly got the hang of it. Unfortunately, the box storing the finished cranes was taken prisoner by my toddler, and half of them were damaged in the process. We still hung up as many as we could, and everyone thought they were beautiful.
The side table was filled with all kinds of goodies. The diaper cake was made my sister's friend, the flowers and owls were from my sister's nursery, and she had also just finished making this beautiful frame with the sweet little girl's name in it. She purchased the vinyl separate, and then placed it inside the painted frame.
On the table I wanted to have something special for the guests to fill out for my sister's little one. So I created this "wishes for the baby" sheet on PicMonkey.
UPDATED - Here's the printable, kids:
These owls, from the nursery, are from etsy or zulily or wherever the heck the crafters meet together to pow wow. Again, food blog here, I have no idea about these things! I think they're adorable, though.
Another tassel banner, but this time I made them much longer, and used hot glue to keep the tassels spaced out a little better. They flowed in the light backyard breeze of the wonderfully cool afternoon. My parents have trees that have finally began to shade the backyard almost completely, and it makes for such a peaceful haven back there.
My husband and I hung these adorable pink and white lanterns off one of the trees. They hung over part of the gathering party guests, and over Ashley as she opened the generous gifts from friends and family. They're from the nursery, as well, so that made it easy enough for borrowing.
|nope, she doesn't have her 6 inch heels on for this one :)|
I absolutely love my big sister, and it was such a pleasure throwing her a baby shower with my dear Mom, and the help of my Aunt Karin for some serious food prep. The women who came to the shower from my family and Mom's neighborhood were all so lovely, and are such good people. I'm so grateful everything came together, and that we get to meet this sweet little angel in a few short weeks!