Tuesday, September 27, 2011

oh how tweet!

My sister Rissa - number three of four - is having herself a little baby girl in November. So I thought we'd have ourselves a little baby shower to celebrate.

If you know me, you know that I love spreadsheets and planning and bossing people around. So baby showers are right up my alley. Given the fact that I've given birth to my brain twice now and that planning had to occur in spare minutes when one tiny one wasn't screaming or one larger tiny one wasn't begging to play, I've been planning this shin dig for months. It actually worked out great that way, however, as I was able to just keep my eyes open for things that would fit our theme. And what a theme it was:
Not only am I obsessed with birds, but so is Rissa. Maybe not as much as me (?) but she does love them. I designed a few invites before this became the winner. And then everything else was inspired by it. I tried to do this on a budget, and this is how it broke down:

invites - Designed by me, printed at Wal Mart as photos - it's a seriously cheap way to print invitations and cards. That said, you have to get a few test prints done and adjust color and margins to fit accordingly.

decor - Because of my obsession, I've got random bird stuff that I was able to put to work. I found that {slightly strange} pigeon for fifty cents at the DI and spray painted him to match. The darling bird houses and bronze birds are my mother-in-law's. I'm completely in love with them and wish they could disappear into my own collection. :)

:: banners, cupcake toppers, food labels, etc. - Designed by me, printed at Alphagraphics - rip off - then a local St. George printing shop, Steamroller's - great deal. My recommendation is to shop around before printing instead of just using the closest place (like me). Alphagraphics was more than twice the cost of Steamroller's. I cut out everything as well, but using a cricut machine would be much quicker (I don't have one).
:: "feather" banners - I used this tutorial to make accordian streamers out of tissue paper. I used two bags of tissue paper (they're only about $1 a bag).
:: table runner - I bought two pink feather boas at Zurcher's ($5 a pop) and ran them lengthwise folded in half. It may be my favorite thing about the shower.
:: hanging birds - Spotted those lovely numbers in the dollar bins at Target.
:: food label clips - Dollar bins at Target. I found them just days before the shower and was more than a little excited.

food - I yo-yoed the menu around for weeks. Because the theme was "oh so tweet," I really wanted to do sweet treats only, but Rissa preferred to have more of a lunch spread. But then as I began pricing a real menu out, I realized that making just treats would save us money. And with a huge invite list (seventy people!), we needed a bunch. So we made everything (the day before, and wow did the kitchen get hot), and everything was "oh so tweet."

:: honey lime fruit salad - I make this recipe from Mel all the time. Kiwis, grapes, and strawberries are staples, but I also throw in random fruit all the time. It always works, and it's always delicious. We used half canned and half fresh and bought at Costco to save a little (and make a lot).
:: grandma's sweet rolls - These are my mom's sweet rolls, a favorite of our family. We tried making them tiny - and they are smaller than normal - but they turned out nice and fluffy and a little bit big. And a lot bit delicious.
:: almond Texas sheet cake - Many people are familiar with the regular chocolate Texas sheet cake (which I also love). This is the same, sans the cocoa and plus almond extract. It's one of my favorite desserts. And makes a nice big batch.
:: oatmeal chewies - This recipe is from Mel too. My Internet BFF. (But she said we could be BFFs so it counts. I love the Internet.) If you haven't made these, you haven't lived. They do have coconut, which some people balk at, but honestly, you don't even know it's there. It just makes the cookie moist and unbelievably delicious. (I didn't even use the word "coconut" on the food label so people wouldn't be scared.)
:: mint brownies - Uh, Mel's recipe. (Her recipes are my favorites, if you were wondering.) We doubled this and ate a truckload of batter.
:: mini cheesecakes - Oh hey Mel. Her recipe too. Rissa really wanted to make these. I'm so glad she did - they were delish. And so dainty and pretty.
:: orange-kissed cookies - These were made, but never frosted. We ran out of time and space on the table. But these cookies are honestly melt-on-your-tongue delicious.

It was super involved and a ton of work (and very little sleep for a few days), but it was worth it. Babies are so worth a celebration, and I wanted to make my sister's perfect. I think she liked it, and it's possible I loved how it turned out.

{Cue the truckload of photos.}

Photos by the youngest sister, Danielle.


Diana said...

I'm so impressed! I absolutely love all of the details. The feather boas are a perfect touch--and so easy to implement too.

Come do Ella's frilly philly party in a couple of weeks, okay? (I wanted to do a ruffle party,and then her obsession for horses emerged so frilly philly is now the combo.) Wish my party-planning partner was close by. Miss you, friend!

The Staheli's said...

WOW, you're hired. :)


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