Circus First Birthday Party

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I kind of dug myself into a hole by throwing such a big first birthday for Evelyn. Remember that one? It took weeks and weeks of prep to get it just right. And I couldn’t stand the thought of my kids, as teens, going through photos and noticing that Evelyn got an incredible first birthday and Remi’s was a cake and some balloons.

I thought I was doing a little less DIY with this party but man, it took the whole freaking day to set up. And the party was at 2! Whatevs. It still turned out exactly as I had envisioned. Maybe even better.

Circus seemed like such a fitting theme for a first birthday party! It’s the ultimate birthday experience. You get all those kooky games one plays at typical birthday parties, with a theme that draws guests in! Now granted, most of our guests were a little on the young side so some of the games were kind of lost on them. But I think a party like this is still appropriate for a first birthday if you have older kids coming. Or if you take the games up a notch, they could be more geared towards the adults. A party is a party…no matter the size of the guest.

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The thing I regret the most about the decor is probably that I wasn’t able to make a circus tent happen. I did make one. It was a red and white striped table cloth draped over a hula hoop. It was going to hang over Remi’s high chair. But once we hung it up and the wind started blowing, it sort of a resembled a bag of trash. Sad.

I tried to create a small form of grand entrance at the entry to the backyard with tablecloths but it didn’t really translate. And at that point, I was running out of time. The good news it, guests only saw it for a fraction of the party. The good stuff is on the inside.

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See those signs? I could have made them myself but I opted to buy them. Yes, I know it says ‘Carnival’ and not ‘Circus.’ Who care? The thing the least amount of people took part in was the face painting station. Understandable I suppose. My sister-in-law was in charge and ended up just painting Remi out of boredom. But it was pretty cute.

The station was equipped with regular face paint and face paint crayons. But also some temporary tattoos and glitter heart stickers.

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What’s a circus without games?! Okay, yeah, that’s probably more of a carnival. It was a circus/carnival theme okay?

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You like those mad artistic skills? That’s right, I painted that ha. We nailed my artwork to an Ikea wooden stool (you know the one, it’s amazeballs) and grabbed some hula hoops from the dollar store and BAM! Ring toss!

I should mention that 94% of the stuff for this party came from the dollar store. Seriously. Food included.

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I kept calling this game Ball-In-Hole which doesn’t so much roll off the tongue but do you have a better name? It’s just four pool noodles (dollar store) and some packing tape. Lots of packing tape. Then I added some spunk with bows and points signs.

We already had the balls, because children. But I got the cute orange serving bowl at…you guessed it, the dollar store.

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My acrobats were probably my favorite part of everything! Aren’t they so cute! I just attached Evelyn’s Barbies to some hula hoops and Chris hung them from the trees. How circus is that?!

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DIY ‘Just forget the world’ Wall Art

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I saw something like this on Pinterest that I just loved. I love this song, Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol and these lyrics just seemed perfect for bedroom art. The theme in my room is modern with gold accents and you know the saying, “Go Gold or Go Home!” (That is the saying right?)

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Anywho let’s get onto the tutorial:

Ingredients  Supplies:

2 Canvas, Mine are 16×20

Stencils or sticker letters

Gold metallic spray paint

Glue, hot glue or spray adhesive

Scrap piece of cardboard

**Shopping tips:

  • Both my canvases came together from Hobby Lobby I think. They were $7.99 total.
  • If you have awesome handwriting, you could totally paint the words on yourself and save yourself the trouble of finding stickers. I really like the script font as opposed to a Times New Roman looking situation and luckily I found the perfect stickers at Hobby Lobby for $7.99. Unfortunately there were not quite enough letters for the full phrase but it worked out for me because I only used some of them as stencils and the others I actually glued on. It will make more sense when you read the tutorial.

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Instructions:

001 Set out the stickers on each canvas to get the spacing right. The stickers didn’t stick to the canvas for me so it wasn’t really a problem to move them around to get them to look how I wanted.

002 Since the stickers didn’t stick to the canvas, I used a glue stick to press them down all the way. I only did this with the first canvas. I wanted all the edges to stick so that when I spray painted them, the letters would appear crisp.

003 Now it’s time to spray paint. I only spray painted the first canvas. Make sure to follow the basic spray painting rules: Never hold the can still, or you’ll get splotches. Keep an equal distance from the canvas the whole time. You know…that sort of thing.

004 Thankfully glue sticks are not that reliable, so it’s easy to peel off the letters. You don’t have to wait too long after spray painting because it dries fairly fast. And that’s it! Canvas one is done!

005 For the second canvas, I reused whatever letters I could from the first canvas, since they were already spray painted gold. Then I took the remaining letters and stuck them to a piece of cardboard in order to spray paint them. They stick better to cardboard than to canvas so you don’t need to use a glue stick on them.

006 Spray paint the letters, give them a minute to dry, then peel them off and place them on your white canvas.

007 Ideally you want to use spray adhesive to adhere the letters to the canvas. I didn’t have any on hand and was eager to finish the project, so I just used hot glue. It works but it’s a little tedious and you have to get all the edges and be careful that they don’t bubble. Then after it’s all done and dry you have to peel off the hot glue strings and excess glue.

And that’s it! Hang them up and enjoy the fruits of your labor!

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If you make this, I’d love to see pictures! Tag me on instagram @bossyjocie or Facebook, Bossy Jocie.

Remington’s Winnie the Pooh photo shoot

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I just can’t help myself when it comes to silly styled photo shoots including a disney element and my cute babies. And with the inclusion of Winnie the Pooh into the mix, I just couldn’t say no. This little shoot is the product of a lazy afternoon. It required quick costume changes and keeping Evelyn occupied so she didn’t see that her brother was playing with her Pooh toys.

I bought Remi’s Tigger outfit for our trip to Disneyland and then opened a suitcase to pack for the trip and found this Pooh costume. Seriously. I just found it. Like what is that? Full disclosure, I knew it existed..my sister bought it for Evelyn and then lost it and I just happened upon it in a suitcase in my attic. So with two outfits from Winnie the Pooh for the same little boy, I had to work in a faux twin photo. Am I cray or what?

Anyways, scroll down for some amateur shots of my cute little nugget and all his Winnie the Pooh pals.

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Ikea Dresser Makeover

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I had such a hard time finding night stands for our master bedroom that were the look I was going for and weren’t like $100 + each! Not in my budget. I ended up choosing these little dressers from Ikea. I like that they have drawers to hide all the junk that is usually in our night stands and they are the perfect nakedness for me to do whatever I want with them. PLUS they’re only $35 each!

The dressers were pretty simple to put together but I still felt super accomplished and proud of myself for following the weird Ikea instructions.

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I had stain left over from staining my bannisters back in December so I just used that to stain the dressers and then picked some totes adorbs hardware from Home Depot to put on the finishing touches.

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I’m so happy with how they turned out! They are exactly what I wanted in my price point with minimal amount of work. Seriously, staining is the easiest way to update a piece of wood furniture. This project has given me motivation to stain my kitchen table!

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Making Costumes for the Tinkerbell Half

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When running a race at Disneyland, you must have costumes. Not only to make you feel happy while you run, but also because the other runners enjoy the parade of costumes to entertain them as they run 13.1 miles.

Darla and I knew right away that we wanted tutus and a cute shirt and it wasn’t that hard to make it happen. I designed the shirts (with the help of google and picmonkey) and tried to order them on Zazzle but Zazzle was like, “Hey this is probably a copyright issue, so we can’t make this for you. Sorry man.” And I’ve had some bad luck with iron-on shirts in the past so I sent the images to Darla and she bought some cute tanks from Victoria’s Secret and ironed them on for us.

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I played my part by making our tutus. It’s super easy, just a little tedious. So if you’re going to make two adult tutus, I’d recommend setting up a binge-watching sesh on Netflix to keep you entertained.

To make the tutus I bought:

  • 4-5 yards of tulle per tutu
  • One package of elastic

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First things first, I cut all the tulle into strips that were more or less the same length. You want the strip twice as long, since you’ll fold it in half when you tie it to the elastic. I’d recommend keeping the strips a tad longer than you think you want them. It’s easier to trim a tutu than it is to add fabric (actually that’s pretty impossible).

Next you’ll want to measure your waist and sew the elastic accordingly. When measuring your waist pull the elastic just a tad to make sure it actually stays on when you’re running (or whatever other activity you’ll be performing while wearing le tutu). I like to have about a 1.5-2 inch overlap when I sew it.

Last thing to do is tie on the strips of tulle. Just fold the tulle in half and put the tail in through the top loop around the elastic. The closer you put the tulle and more tulle you use, the fluffier it will be.

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We ended up trimming our tutus to stick straight out more than lay down. But all in all we looked fab!

What costumes do you wear when running races at Disney or anywhere else?

Hey Girl Memes– Baby edition

Remember those 8 month photos I had taken of Remi? Well one of them was just so cute and studly that I couldn’t help myself but turn it into a meme. Or 8.

You know those “Hey Girl” meme of Ryan Gosling? That’s what these were modeled after. Obviously. These are really the most pleasing things an infant could ever say to his mother. Anyway, that’s all I really have to say. The memes can say the rest.

 

I present to you, Hey Girl memes, Baby style.

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“Hey Girl, I know you’ve had a hard day. You relax in the tub and I’ll take an extra long nap.”


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“Hey Girl, get ready for a full night’s sleep. I’m feeling extra sleepy.”

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“Hey Girl, No, don’t get up. I’ll put myself to bed tonight.”

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“Hey girl, That extra baby weight looks good on you.”

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“Hey girl, you can finish your book. I’ll just play quietly by myself.”

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“Hey girl, Don’t worry, I’ll change my own diaper.”

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“Hey girl, I’m really craving some mashed peas. Can I get you anything while I’m in the kitchen?”

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Which would you add to the mix?

Disneyland for two

IMG_9702 copyJPGI have been to Disneyland and Disney World my fair share of times. They are my second home. My mom grew up in California so we went there for a long time until we moved to Georgia and Disney World was a short 10 hour drive away. Then I got an internship at Disney World right after Chris and I got married. The Disney parks hold a special place in my heart and are full of fun memories.

However, this past trip was unlike any I’ve taken, in the very best way. My Aunt Darla and I have been close pretty much my whole life. She’s always treated me like a friend first and a niece never. I even lived with her for a year during my most very awkward of phases. Nonetheless, and despite our cross country distance, we’ve remained close friends. That made this trip to Disneyland incredible!

The occasion, of course, was the Tinkerbell half marathon. But we decided to take advantage of being there and spend a few days in the park. With her military discount we scored 3-day park hopper passes for $150!! At first we were just going to do one day, but a one day ticket is $105+tax. So for $45 extra dollars we could add two more days and a park hopper. It was a no brainer really.

It was about a 9 hour drive from Utah to Anaheim but the drive really wasn’t bad. We left at like 6am and took 2 hour turns so neither of us got too bored with driving.

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^^Lunch on the road at Wienerscnitzel

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Darla was all too happy to point out that there had been shift in our relationship. Where I was once the cool, young, hip teenager, I was now the mother of toddlers and was not in-the-know on anything cool or hip. She, however, as the mother of 2 teenage girls was. As evidenced by the fact that she had to teach me how to use snapchat. #imsoold

We had a ridiculously fun time. We let ourselves enjoy sitting down for a nice meal (Scroll down for all my favorite places we ate!) instead of feeling stressed to rush and ride everything. We sat and chatted (and were interrupted by Oswald). We moseyed around and rode what we wanted, when we wanted, without having to make a whole gaggle of people happy. We even took a break for like an hour and bought some souvenirs from Sephora in Downtown Disney. That would have never happened if my husband was with us.

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My favorite part of the trip was probably Sunday night. We were both so silly slap-happy after having been awake for so many hours. We were hobbling around with sore knees and giggling at everything. It was fun that Darla brought herself down to my immaturity level for a night.

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On Monday, we had planned to go to Disneyland in the morning and leave by noon for the 10 hour drive back. Well, we were both so tired that we didn’t even end up getting to the park until noon. And we didn’t really care. There was no one to tell us one way or the other.

We started at Matterhorn which was an annoyingly long line but we both really wanted to ride it. We got up to the part of the queue where it was weaving back and forth. We were close to entrance of the ride but there were still probably 30 people ahead of us. But the guy running the ride saw us, pulled us out of line and let us walk right on. I guess were were looking pretty fly.

We got through most of the ride before it stopped. Shut down. We were sitting there for a while but it was actually really peaceful. We were in the sun, right next to a waterfall. Darla and I were just playing on our phones. By the time they got us off the ride, they gave us a fastpass for the ride of our choosing (except Hyperspace Mountain) for our trouble. #worthit.

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We headed over to Star Tours since we hadn’t been on that one yet. The fastpass line was stupid long which got us both annoyed because we had limited time in the park. But when it got to the point to give up our magical fastpass ticket the guy looked at us, and then gave it back. “I didn’t do that,” he said. We must have been lookin’ super fly!

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So we walked right onto Indiana Jones. For the third time this trip. Then a quick corndog lunch (yum!) and we rushed right over to California Adventure since we still hadn’t ridden Tower of Terror. But I checked the wait time on my app as we walked in and noticed that California Screamin was a 10 minute wait. So instead, we rode that twice, wrapped it up with The Little Mermaid, grabbed some ice cream from Ghiradelli and headed home.

By this time it was about 5pm. I drove us out of the city and as we were reaching our 2 hour switch point we spotted an outlet mall. Something you should know…Darla and I are both avid shoppers. (I blame her for my addiction). So we spent like 30 min to an hour in Old Navy and then got back on the road.

Darla drove for almost two hours and I took us the rest of the way home so she could sleep. But the only way I could manage that was by chugging two Rockstar energy drinks back to back. By the time we did get home at 5am, I had a hard time falling asleep cause I was still a little buzzed on caffeine.

It was the most amazing weekend. Neither of us wanted to leave but were still excited to see our families. It was so wonderful, we plan to make a habit of this whole Disney running thing. So stay tuned for more Disney runs! I’m thinking the next one will be Feb 2017.

Favorite Places to Eat at Disneyland and California Adventure:

Jazz Kitchen

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Located in Downtown Disney, the Jazz kitchen offers cajun-creole food. It’s on the pricier side but if you have the money to spend, it’s well worth it. I just wish I had saved more room for dessert because we saw and smelled them making Bananas Foster at the table next to us and it looked mouth wateringly delicious.

Flo’s Cafe

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Flo’s is in the heart of Radiator Springs at California adventure and is the perfect stop for breakfast after getting your fast pass for Radiator Springs Racers (you have to do that first because they run out). The brioche french toast is incredible and it is a big piece. But if you’re anything like me, you might need something savory in addition to a sweet piece of french toast. If you are there with another person, one of you order the french toast, and the other person order the breakfast platter with eggs, hashbrowns, a biscuit and bacon and then split it! It’s more than enough food for two people.

Cozy Cone Motel

I wish I had been hungrier when we walked through the Cozy Cone Motel but I just wanted a a quick snack and popcorn hit the spot perfectly. I opted for regular butter, but the offer all kinds of flavored popcorn if you’re feeling adventurous. The other cones have sweet and savory snacks and some that could even serve as a meal. You can read more on this post (scroll about halfway down).

Little Red Wagon

When I did research for our last trip to Disneyland I read about these corndogs and wanted one SO BAD. But it just never happened. So for this trip I was determined to get one! This was my first meal after our half marathon and it hit the spot perfectly. These are unlike any corndogs you’ve had. They’re huge and hand dipped and delightful. They are located right at the end of Main Street and corndogs are the only thing they serve (with chips and a drink if you want). But everyone seems to know how amazing these corndogs are and the line is always crazy long. So if you’re looking to save some time and have a place to sit, head on over to the next restaurant, The Stage Door Cafe.

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Located in Frontierland at Disneyland, this cafe serves the very same hand-dipped corndogs you can get at Little Red Wagon, without the long wait and with other food options if you’re dining with people who may not be in the mood for a corndog (is there such a person?!)

River Belle Terrace

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Also located in Frontierland with a great view of the Mark Twain Riverboat, River Belle Terrace is a nice sit down restaurant to rest your tired feet for dinner after a long day at the park. Or if you ran a half marathon 20 hours prior. I had the ribs which were finger lickin’ good. The price is worth it for the food. We didn’t make a reservation but we didn’t have to wait long for a table.

Cocina Cucamonga Mexican Grill

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Located at the Pacific Wharf in California Adventure. Yummy yummy Mexican food and the price is right! My aunt and I both got a burrito plate that came with beans and rice and was plenty to fill our bellies. Plus the time of day we were there wasn’t too crowded so we could pleasantly chat under the shade without distraction.

Ghiradelli’s

And right down the way from the Mexican Grill is Ghiradelli’s! Head over for a delicious ice cream dessert. I’d highly recommend splitting it with a friend though. Neither of us could finish our Sundays. And every time you enter the store you get a free chocolate. We happened to go in three times and decided not to get ice cream until the 4th time. But we got three free chocolates (say that 10 times fast).

 

Mickey and Minnie photo shoot

 

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Remi’s 8 month photo shoot just so happened to be right before our trip to Disneyland. I took advantage of the fact that I had gotten costumes for the kids for the trip and decided to get a few Mickey and Minnie shots while I had a talented photographer there (Malae Talley Photo).

I’m kind of a Disney fanatic so these pictures make me obsessively happy. Like I kind of can’t even handle it. These are perfect.

Remington likes Evelyn significantly more than she likes him. Which is unfortunate and makes it hard to take photos of the two of them. They turned out pretty cute nonetheless.

Take a look for yourself:

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Neverland Nursery

 

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Remember when I did the reveal of the Winnie the Pooh nursery? Well we have since moved Evelyn into her own room downstairs and took the Pooh decor with her which means that the old Winnie the Pooh nursery needed a makeover!

Initially my thought was to do a nautical theme, because adorable! But as I was searching Pinterest for inspiration I came across a Peter Pan’s Neverland themed nursery and I was instantly hooked. I’m a sucker for storybook, imagination, fantasy goodness.

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I kept the crib and a few pieces from the old gallery wall but everything else is new and on theme.

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My favorite part of the room is probably the flying ship mobile. When I started making it, it was just going to be floating stars but once it was all done it felt like it was missing something and thus came the flying boat. If you know the story of Peter Pan, you know that he covers Captain Hook’s ship in pixie dust and uses it to fly Wendy and her brothers home. Making this mobile was a ridiculous amount of work but after seeing the end product, I feel like it was SO worth it.

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I love that this room has so many elements of the Peter Pan story; Captain Hook’s ship on one wall, a teepee from the lost boys on another. Even Captain Hook’s hook is there to hold up a lantern for my little lost boy’s night light.

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This has become one of my favorite rooms in the house. It’s so full of imagination and possibility. I’m excited for Remi to get older and find a similar love of the Peter Pan story and dream of going to Neverland.

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Remi 8 month baby photo shoot

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I had every intention of doing a 6 month photo shoot for Remi like I did for Evelyn. Well I kept having to reschedule and bottom line is, it ended up being more of an 8 month shoot. (Full disclosure, Remi is like 11 months now). Which is still adorable. It happened right after I bought the kids Easter outfits and right before our Disney trip so we got some really adorable Mickey and Minnie shots (in a post coming your way soon) and Easter shots.

At 8 months Rem is a moving machine. He pulls himself up on everything and cruises from couch to table to chair. He loves playing with his sister who would rather play with ANYONE else. He loves jumping in his bouncer chair. And he finally has two cute little teeth!

These incredible photos were taken by Malae Tally Photo, my go-to photographer and BFF.

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