Easy Pre-School Craft: Birdhouses

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Oh Georgia weather, you’re such a tease. With the jonquils blooming and yesterday’s afternoon warmth I was thinking Spring was officially here, but no, this morning is downright chilly! Come soon Spring, we are ready for you to stay! Aren’t the flowers beautiful though?

Today I wanted to share with you something so easy and fun that your pre-schooler (or probably any kid for that matter) will have fun doing. The other day Preston (my 3.5 year old son)  and I went to my favorite place, Hobby Lobby. One of the aisles we went down had all the little bare wood items. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about, this aisle has wood letters, little boxes of all kinds, small shelves, shapes of every kind…a huge assortment of plain wooden items. Well, Preston found a tiny little birdhouse that he just thought was the cutest thing. It was only a few dollars so I let him get it.

Later that afternoon he was bored so I got out the birdhouse and his paints, covered his little work table with a plastic tablecloth and let him get to work. He probably painted that little house for over an hour and had such a good time doing it. It was a great pre-school craft because it allowed him to practice making decisions–he decided which wood item he wanted, and he got to tap into his creative side and let his artistic juices flow. I feel that letting children develop their imagination and creativity is so important.

This idea may be one you already to do with your little one, but in case you hadn’t thought of it before I decided to pass the idea along. I also loved that it kept him entertained and occupied for so long, this would be the perfect thing to let your child do if you need to work on laundry or clean the house a bit. Since this is an inexpensive activity we will be doing this a lot more often too.

And now I have the cutest little birdhouse painted by my most favorite little guy. Isn’t it darling?

Easy Pre-School Craft: Bird House

I love it sitting here on my front porch, however, the other day Preston saw it out here and got really upset. Apparently he painted it to give to his baby sister for her first birthday. He’s the sweetest child I have ever known.

I brought the birdhouse back inside after I took the photo; it’s just as well though because this was how the porch was decorated for the winter. During the Christmas season in place of the birdhouse was a tiny silver glittery reindeer that was just so cute. Don’t you just love the mix of all the mediums? I think the mason jar with twine wrapped around it sitting next to a mercury glass votive on a modern looking tray with a burlap runner has a fun, interesting look.

However, I need to do some Spring decorating now that April is just around the corner. Maybe, just maybe, after Madison’s birthday on April 4th Preston will let me put the birdhouse back on the porch. 🙂

What kind of crafts do you like to do with your little ones?

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Homemade Valentines

Okay, so I know this holiday has come and gone for the year but I didn’t want to post this before Valentine’s Day because I didn’t want to spoil the surprise for the people I sent Valentines to. So…use these as ideas for next year or adapt the concept for upcoming holidays.

First you have to visit a craft store for supplies. I picked up silver glitter notecards, Mod Podge, pretty scrapbook paper, silver scrapbook letter stickers, a large heart shaped hole punch and small white lacy heart stickers. You will also need envelopes that the notecards fit in.

These are so easy and cute to do! Just punch out lots of cute hearts from the paper and arrange it however you’d like on your notecards. Use a paint brush and paint the back of the hearts with Mod Podge then glue to your notecard. Make words like LOVE, HEART, XOXO and KISSES with the silver scrapbook letters. Put the white heart stickers on too.

I was making these for my 18 month old son to give his grandparents and friends so the inside included a Happy Valentine’s Day note and also his handprint. I painted his hand with fingerpaint and put it on cardstock, then cut out the hand print with fancy edged scissors and glued it on the inside of the card.

Have fun making these Valentine’s Day cards! Just a thought: for Easter you could do something similar and cut out cross shaped paper or Easter egg shapes.

“Bye, Bye Fall” Photoshoot

I have somewhat of an obsession with taking photos…hardly a day goes by that I don’t take at least one photo of my little man! Before the Christmas season takes over I thought I would post a few Fall themed pictures of Preston. As you can see, he sported a monkey costume for Halloween this year.

Isn’t his shirt so perfect for fall pictures? I love the combination of orange and the grayish-green color.

The good thing about him sitting in a wagon is that he can’t run all over the place…it can be quite challenging capturing an active little boy! I’m learning some tricks though and at some point I have faith that I’ll be able to say, “Stand still please” and he’ll actually do it! (grin)

It’s about time to take the family photo for Christmas cards…need someone to take it for you? I’d be glad to! If you’re in the Metro Atlanta area and are in need of a photographer for Christmas card photos or engagement photos or maternity photos or just cute photos of your kids, contact me at AnneRains@gmail.com.

Baby Gender Reveal Cake Pops

These Baby Gender Reveal Cake Pops were such fun creating! You may be wondering, “what in the heck are Baby Gender Reveal Cake Pops?!” So let me first explain, the idea of having a Baby Gender Reveal party is catching on quickly I think. Basically, instead of finding out the sex of your baby at the time of the ultrasound, the nurse will put the ultrasound pictures and also a note whether the baby is a boy or girl in an envelope. Then the parents-to-be take the envelope to a bakery so they can create a cake that reveals what the baby is. On the outside of the cake (or cake pops in this instance) you can’t tell what the baby is, but the inside cake will either be dyed pink or blue…girl or boy. How fun is that?!

So one of my best friends is preggo with her second child and thought having a Baby Gender Reveal party would be fun this time around. She asked me to create cake pops for the party and I happily obliged. Oh what fun!

I made these cake pops with a dark chocolate coating to ensure the inside color would not be revealed ahead of time and then decorated them with adorable blue and pink polka dots. Each cake pop was individually wrapped and tied off with either a pink or blue ribbon. I wasn’t about to give any hints to spoil the big surprise!

The cake pops were displayed in a glass vase that the Mom-to-Be set out at the Baby Gender Reveal party. I loved making these cake pops and would love to make some for you too. Just shoot me an email at AnneRains@gmail.com and we’ll coordinate the details.

As you can see, this friend is having a girl. Which is pretty perfect since her first was a boy; how great to have one of each! I’m ecstatic for her and will be spoiling that little girl since I only have a son as of right now!

Favorite Photos from Crested Butte, Co

Tonight I finally got around to editing my favorite photos I took while on vacation in September to Crested Butte, Colorado. If you have never heard of or visited Crested Butte before you should definitely consider vacationing there! It’s absolutely beautiful and is a fun little mountain town full of great restaurants (you won’t find fast food places or franchises there…just locally owned restaurants with really delicious food!)

If you enjoy snow skiing it’s great to visit in the winter and is cheaper than big name places like Aspen and Vail. Summertime you can enjoy hiking, mountain biking, white water rafting, horse back riding and just taking in the beautiful scenery. And no matter which season you visit in there’s plenty of cute little shops and boutiques for you to explore. I love the slower pace of life in Crested Butte and the fact that you can easily walk or bicycle to get around town (or take the free town shuttle between the town of Crested Butte and up to the ski resort area!)…maybe someday I will move there.

Enjoy these photos!

If you want to see more pictures from our Crested Butte, CO trip, here’s a link to my Facebook album of my favorite (unedited) images:

Colorado Trip Album

Isn’t the world God created for us beautiful?! Just imagine what Heaven will be like!!
Have a blessed evening!

A Pirate’s First Birthday

This post is long overdue seeing as this party occurred in July!! Ooops! Better late than never though right? My son, Preston, has been nicknamed “Preston the Pirate” since before he was born when I decided upon a pirate themed nursery…so, it was only fitting to make his first birthday party pirate themed as well.

I spent months working out the details for this party! (I’m kind of obsessed with planning and throwing parties!) Many nights I would be trying to fall asleep when a new idea would pop in my head and I would have to write it down right then…and sometimes I would even get out of bed, open the laptop and update the spreadsheet I created for the party. Yes, I did say spreadsheet! I’m a bit of an organized nut so I make spreadsheets for each party I plan with guest lists, decoration lists, food lists…basically anything I can make a list for I do!

Well, before y’all think I’m totally crazy, let’s get to the photos from the party…

I created a banner using ribbon, scrapbook paper and this Martha Stewart letter template.

Using styrofoam, some cute fabric, dowel sticks and laundry pins I created a photo display of each month of Preston’s first year.

The food table was so much fun creating! I’m in love with burlap at the moment and it’s very “piratey” in my opinion so I used it as the tablecloth. I created another banner that says “Ye Grub Station” and hung tons of ribbons from the chandelier. You can see the pirate flag and the pirate ship make up the centerpiece. Gold coins and necklaces were the treasure scattered throughout the table.

Cake pops are pretty time consuming to make but I think they really added an extra touch to the party.

I opted for cupcakes instead of doing a smash cake and regular birthday cake.

S’more kabobs…as you can see, I labeled all the food with silly little names to add more fun.

Fruit kabobs

Sausage Balls

Pigs ‘n a Blanket

Carrots and Celery with Ranch

Other food items included caramel popcorn, goldfish and fruit snacks.

Sweet tea and lemonade was served and guests could choose a mason jar to drink from. I created labels that they could write their name on.

I created a “Preston” banner for his chair and attached a balloon bouquet.

The favors were pirate rubber duckies, pirate tattoos and necklaces.

It was such a fun first birthday party to plan! He’s already almost 15 months, almost time to start planning birthday party number two…just kidding, kinda!

Don’t have the time or would rather hand off the duty of planning your child’s birthday party to someone else? Contact me for a free consultation. I serve the Metro Atlanta and Northeast Atlanta areas and would love to help!

Need help with a bridal or baby shower? Or maybe a milestone birthday party or anniversary party? I can help you plan those events too!

You can reach me at AnneRains@gmail.com

Family Outing: Perry Fair

Today we drove forever away to go to the Fair in Perry, Georgia…well it wasn’t THAT far, but 2.5 hours in the car with a 14 month old who rather run around than sit still can be fraying on the nerves! Preston is too little to ride the rides or play the carnival games so we mostly checked out the animals (the llamas were our favorite!) and munched on some snacks…fair food is not healthy, but oh so delicious! Have you had a hot apple dumpling with vanilla icecream at the fair? Oh you HAVE to get one! Yummy!

Here are a few photos from our day

Is that Llama not precious? She was so sweet too…she gave kisses! Her owner takes her to hospitals to visit patients and brighten their day. Pretty neat!

I hope that you are having a great weekend and enjoying fun activities with family and friends! Be blessed!