Saturday, August 25, 2012

Bob's 60th Surprise Birthday Party

Two weeks ago, we  had a surprise birthday party for my father in law, Bob.  He turned the big 6-0 this year! We had his party at my sister in law's cafe in Lewisville. 

If you know me, you know I always have to have a theme to my parties. We thought long and hard, but settled on a "swamp people" theme, since that is his favorite TV show.

Getting ready for the party, I did what any twenty first century party planner does...I looked on Pintrest of course! 

But... sadly there were not many swamp people parties.  Most were for kids and didn't have too much to them.

So, I thought I'd share some of my swamp people party ideas, just in case you decide to throw a swamp party for someone special in your life.

I thought I would highlight a few of the things that I made for this party.  First, I made swampy, glow stick votives. These cost $5 for the set and I got all the materials at the dollar tree.  I found some twigs in the front yard & glued them around the sides.  I plan on recycling these for fall!  I filled them with water & threw in a green glow stick (also found at dollar tree).  The only thing I would have done different on these is maybe add green food coloring to the water and/or about 3 or 4 more glow sticks in each votive.

Glow Stick Votives
Two glass vases
Two Candle sticks
twigs from the yard
glow sticks & water

Materials for making signs for the party.  All FREE!!! Found in an ally down town. (most off old pallets, throw outs from an antique shop, & boards fallen from old buildings).

First of all, I never really thought that there was a "font" for swamp writing, but technically there is. I sat long and hard thinking of how to paint on these signs to make them look "swampy".  I finally perfected the "swamp font", which is actually making it look like a 2 year old wrote it-the messier the better!

I recommend using a truck for project #3-Swamp trees! I got some pretty crazy looks from my neighbors driving down the street like this.

Swamp Trees

The original plan for these was to use the crepe paper to fold up or spiral to attach to the branches to look like moss hanging down from a swamp tree, willow tree, or whatever kind of tree you want to make. 

After I got them made and started attaching the paper, my sister in law & I decided we liked them better without the crepe.

Find lots of branches. (and I mean lots!!!) I broke them off to be the heights I wanted.  I found two black buckets at the dollar tree & removed the white handles.  Next, I put the foam in the bottom of the bucket & began to stick the branches in all different ways. I threw in the rocks around the sides of the foam to weight it down and support the heavy branches.  As I added more branches, I continued to fill the bucket with rocks. After I got finished, I hot glued hunks of moss on top of all the rocks to cover up the "ugliness".

You can also use a much prettier base, spray paint your branches white or a bright color, & hang jewels, feathers or anything else that you can think of to make these a more elegant addition.

Assemble these where ever the party is.  These do not transport well! 

Total cost on these (2 buckets $1 a piece + foam $1+ 1 bag moss $1)=$4
Add rail road rocks (free) & branches courtesy of crazy Arkansas weather(free)

The free signs (swamp font at it's best) & Swamp trees

For this sign, I recycled tin from a previous project, painted it up, & took it into the backyard & added a little buckshot flair to it. Perfect for what I needed!

(& yes, I shot those holes myself-& reloaded the gun, I'm sort of proud of myself over that...)

Total cost=FREE!!  (minus the cost of the bullets, which my hubby already had)

Bob's awesome red velvet gator cake, courtesy of All in Good Taste Bakery in Texarkana. They always do a wonderful job on cakes for me, but I honestly think it was one of the BEST cakes I've ever eaten. 

The Menu

The Birthday boy himself

Dalton has gator fever!

April gave Bob his birthday card.

Look at all those candles! We ran out before we got to 60...

Bob & his friends from work

Another "free" sign. I think this could be recycled to flower bed decor? haha!

up close view of the stick votives-definitely much cooler in person, but still wish I had added a few more glow sticks.

I added the gator hats & plastic snakes around to serve as decoration, but they were perfect to let the kids play with & send home with them.

Luke was showing Bob his snake.

Bob & his "Troy" pose-He looks just like him!

Val & Bob

Jason's Family

The Clark ladies & Aunt Sue

Best Friends!

My brother & sis in law

Overall, we really pulled one over on Bob! He never knew what we had up our sleeves.  Both of my sister in laws, Val & Robbi, did so much to make the party amazing! We all came together and had a wonderful time We had around 65 people show up, so we definitely had a good turn out to celebrate Bob.

Since we didn't have a lot of room, we kept the decorations to a  minimum, but they had a wonderful effect. 

Total cost of decorations for the party:
$2- 2 Buckets
$1-glow sticks
$2-glass vase
$2-candle sticks
$4-tissue paper for pom pom puffs
$3-plastic snakes
$3 Gator hats


I think that's pretty good!  Of course we also had cake, ice cream, & all the food, but overall, it was a very fun & easy party.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Girl's Weekend to Nashville

Where has the summer gone? I can hardly believe that school has already creeped up on us.

Fall is fast approaching,that means it's time for yummy soups, trick or treating, football, and this year, one of my very best friends from college is having her wedding in October!

Lauren & I lived together, were sorority sisters, and were best friends through our college years. I am so honored to have been chosen as one of her bridesmaids.

A few weeks ago, we kicked off Lauren's wedding festivities in style with a "boot scoot'n" girls trip to Nashville, TN. 

This was my first time there (even though I've always wanted to go).  It was just as amazing as I pictured it.

We had a wonderful weekend full of Bachelorette fun, sight seeing, & of course, eating at some yummy stops along the way.

Check out this super cute invitation & glass that Ashley & Cassie Jo made!

Here we are getting ready to hit the town for a girls day out!

Sporting our blinged out YEE HAW bandanas

Lunch at Hard Rock Cafe

Even these sweet little dogs wanted to be famous. :) I think Maci could definitely have a future as a Nashville Star.

We hung out at "the Stage" for a bit & listened to a few country singers.

Me & the Bride

Having a blast in Nashville!

Overall, we had a fantastic time. I can't wait to go back & this time go with Jason.  

It was the perfect place to have her bachelorette party. Now, the real fun begins, the wedding :)

Happy Weekend Everybody!!!!