October 10, 2019

Dash's Vintage Inspired Sports Room

Right before I started taking pictures to document Dash's room we found out our new little one would be arriving. I've dreamt of decorating a little boy's room for a good while and when Dash arrived I couldn't wait to get started. The arrangement will change a bit after new baby arrives, but I'm hoping and praying for another little guy to add here to share in all the "boyness" of this room with big brother. 

The inspiration for designing this space came to me from both mine and Shane's love of sports as we grew up playing. I didn't want it to be overly sports themed that would dominate the decor and I knew I wanted to add in neutral pieces to soften it up a bit. Since Shane and I both come from sports backgrounds I thought it would be fun to add that into the mix of things, bringing in old pictures from our dad's sporting days and even some of mine and Shane's from when we were kids. This is where the "vintage" theme came into play. I started collecting all the old vintage sports items I could find, some that came from our own family and some that I found at Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market (always a great place to find the perfect vintage items!). 

Some of my favorite pieces on those shelves are the ones that came straight from Shane, like all the little trophies from when he was growing up and the wooden bat he broke as a kid. The ASU basketball jersey was also Shane's from the time he played on the team during college. I added in old photos from my dad and Shane's dad from their basketball days too, which was a fun touch. And since Shane and I both love golf (he proposed to me on the 18th hole at TPC Scottsdale) we had to add in golf touches throughout the space. :)

We had some help from Burts Bees Baby and Ashley Home furniture from their new baby & toddler line with the bigger items in this room, like the rocking chair, new crib, and changing table/dresser and I love how they lightened up the space in a simple way. This room is pretty small and with any small space in our home I've always stuck to lighter colors on the walls. I knew I wanted to make this more boy-like so I painted one black wall to bring in contrast and bring out more of the dark blues and blacks sprinkled throughout the room. 

To bring some of my art into too I created this "lets play ball" watercolored piece and I love how it fits right in to everything else. 

Vintage photos of me and Shane from when we were kids. Shane's basketball photo, and one of my first from "playing" golf :) Both of us about 4 years old. 

This might be one of my favorite rooms I've done in our house yet. I'm not great about sharing all of the before and afters of our home--I can't remember to keep up with them-- but I've gotten a lot of requests in the past about it so I'll try to share more as things come together. We've lived here for 5 years now and done a TON of work to this tiny space and it's probably just now starting to feel more like "us"... even though the project list is really never ending :)

I'm in full on nesting mode around our house right now since new baby will be arriving in the next couple weeks so I'm rearranging and purging lots of things left and right (Shane's reeeally excited about it). But honestly it's so fun for me to create a new space that I know will bring comfort, freshness and more simplicity to our home. The girls room is on my list right now and I'll be sharing more of that when all the chaos is finished up. Four girls in one tiny room is no easy project! 

Thanks for being here friends! 

September 19, 2019

Simple DIY Fairy Crown

I had so many questions about these crowns I made for the twins birthday party that I decided to make it into a blog post tutorial for those that would like to create one for themselves. The fun thing about this is that it was simple AND cheap, making it a sweet way to bring a little personal touch into the theme of the party for them. So here it is...

What you will need:
-ribbon (any size, color or texture depending on the look you are going for
-thin floral wire, mine is gold so it went well with the colors I was using (found at any craft store)
-brown twig floral wire (found mine at Walmart)
-fake flowers (again, found at any craft store. I grabbed mine from the dollar store! score!)

-Take your "twig" wire or whatever your base wire is for the crown and size it around the head, leaving a little extra on the end to wrap and secure together
-form the wire in a circle shape and wrap the ends together "tying" them together to secure
-once secured together, take your ribbon and cut them into the length you want them to hang down once they are tied onto your crown. 
-simply tie as many ribbons as you want onto the back of your crown
for this I tied all the ribbon over the part of the wire I secured together so it would hide that part a bit more
-optional: you can also take another piece of ribbon and wrap it around your wire to add a little more color and texture to the wire if you want
-once all your ribbon is tied on, take your faux flowers and cut off as many pieces as you'd like to place on your crown. 
for this step I cut the stem a bit longer so I had enough of it to be secured on with the gold wire. 
-Next, take your gold or thinner floral wire and tightly wrap the base/stem part onto the crown where you want it placed. Once you have the wire wrapped all the way, you can maneuver your flower a bit to make it stay where you want on your crown. 
-repeat these steps until you are satisfied with the look of your crown! 

I can't wait to see how you make yours! Tag me on Instagram so I can see your creations. And with halloween right around the corner it makes for a perfect way to throw together a last minute costume idea!

September 4, 2019

Raleigh's 5th Birthday Ballerina Party

The fact that I'm writing this post almost a year after these were taken shows how "great" of a blogger and on top of it all that I am! haha. Raleigh is turning another year older soon and I remembered I never got around to posting this party we threw for her last year. It was so fun to put together I didn't want to put off posting about it any longer.

I love putting together parties for my kids that are all about them--things they're into, what they love or talk about most, their favorite colors, etc. It's always been natural and fun for me to come up with putting together an event that's well themed and pretty and getting to do that for my kids now is by far the best!

Raleigh has been a little dancer ever since she could start walking. Always into music, boppin her head or singing at the top of her lungs! It's one of my favorite things about her, how much she loves listening to good tunes or can come up with a beat, lyrics and creative dance moves at the drop of a hat. So it was only perfectly fitting to throw a ballerina themed party for her 5th birthday last year. Being a ballerina was especially popular in our household over the past couple years since the girls started their first ballet class (and umm, toddlers in ballet is probably the cutest thing ever!).

The funnest part of the party was surprising Raleigh with some real ballerinas to come over and teach all the kids a little "ballet recital" they could all do together for the parents at the end of the party. The smile on her face when she saw them show up was priceless! The kids made ballerina wands, ate cake, and had a game of "ballerina says" in addition to an impromptu dance party all before the party ended. It was a sweet time celebrating our oldest girl and watching her glow with that beautiful smile of hers was the best part of it all. 

I always say that parties don't have to be a ton of money or over elaborate to make it special (although my husband might say I go overboard every now and then, haha). But making it all about their personality and celebrating who they are is what the theme should always be about. My goal is always to make each of my kids feel known and special in their own way as they grow up weather its through giving them special dates or asking them questions or throwing them a party. I love that each year brings more ways of seeing more of their uniqueness unfold and gives me new and better ways to celebrate them. 

Now I'm off to plan her SIXTH birthday party in another fun way! :)

August 28, 2019

Our Favorite Summer Dessert: Fresas con Crema

I have a huge sweet tooth when it hits about 9 o'clock at night (mostly for ice cream), but when we had no ice cream in sight one night I scrounged around our fridge to see what I could come up with. A handful of strawberries, cream and some sugar is all I could find which reminded me of one of mine and Shane's favorite Mexican desserts "fresas con crema".  So I googled a recipe for the simple dessert and basically went from there making up my own version as I went along based on what I had on hand.  After a few times of making it and adjusting it to our liking, we now have a new family dessert we all love (and has been highly requested around here this summer). The best part is that its easy enough that I had each of the girls help take part in a simple step along the way of making it so it was a sweet family activity to create together as well. 

It's sometimes a challenge finding time to give each of our kids focused attention and time--as you can probably imagine with 5 (almost 6) kids running around. Shane and I have made a commitment since last year to each take a kid out on a special date once a week. Although life gets crazy and schedules get flipped sometimes, we try our best to make this a priority. I've also found that another way to give them sweet time together is allowing them to help out in the kitchen with preparing a meal every once in a while. They each have loved the individual time it brings for us, even if just for a few minutes. And I love that they are eager to learn about what I'm making and how I'm doing it along the way. Giving them these moments is a gift for me as much, if not more, as it is for them. Its something I hope they remember when they're grown up and in the kitchen with their little ones doing the same thing. 

Now, I KNOW I'm no food blogger nor am I trying to be, but since I posted it on my Instagram last week, I've had a handful of people asking for this recipe and I'm so happy to pass it along for you to enjoy! So here is all you need to put together this creamy yummy special treat...

What you need: 
-2 cups fresh strawberries (give or take, depending on how many you are making for)
-1 1/2 cups heavy cream
-2 tablespoons milk (if you want your cream a little thinner)
-1/4 cup sugar
-1 tablespoon vanilla extract
optional toppings:
-coconut flakes
-granola (this is one of my favorites to use)
-chopped pecans

-Cut strawberries in halves or quarters (depending on the size you like) and place in a bowl
-pour sugar over strawberries and mix, coating all of the fruit in sugar
-let strawberries sit for at least 5 minutes for sugar to absorb
-after 5 minutes are up, pour over heavy cream and milk
(optional tip: I like mine extra creamy so I usually pour in as much to barely cover the top of the strawberries in the bowl)
-add vanilla extract for flavor, then mix all together
-if you'd like your dessert colder, let it sit in the fridge for 30 minutes to an hour to become chilled, otherwise you can eat it right away! 
-once chilled, divide into bowls and top with optional coconut flakes and granola (which I highly recommend ;)) and serve!

I hope you enjoy it as much as we have! If you decide to try it out on our own or with your kiddos please let me know what you think. You can always tag me on Instagram or comment here below. I'd love to hear from you!

August 12, 2019

Twins 5th Birthday Fairy Party

It's been a little over a week now since we officially have three 5 year olds running around our house now. If you're confused by that, our oldest is still 5 and will be 6 in September--her and the twins are 10.5 months apart!

We celebrated their big day in fairy style with just our family for a sweet morning brunch. Anything having to do with fairies or princesses is all they've been into lately, which I kind of love to be honest. I love to watch their imaginations run wild as they dress up and pretend and invent new ways to play together. It brings me back to all the things I used to do as a kid and all of a sudden I'm 5 years old again too.

I scored some things on Amazon for the party like these dresses and shoes that the twins have been wearing non stop. For the birthday activity all the kiddos painted and decorated fairy houses to take home. I was so surprised at how into it they all were and loved that it was something they all were excited about. Seeing each little house at the end of it all was probably my favorite, they all turned out so dang cute!! I love making intentional times like this at their parties, a little activity they can all look forward to and remember back on  as they grow up.

These twins of mine have sure given us more life and laughter and challenge than we ever imagined, but reflecting on this past year with them was something that made Shane and I both choke up at the thought of how sweet our year with them has been. They are feisty and fun, and strong-willed and kind and creative and smart and determined. So many similarities between them, but each in their own unique and different way. I'm pretty proud I get to be the one they call mom and I loved celebrating them in this way.

Here are a few links and inspiration ideas for more things I grabbed for the party in case you were wondering:

Girls fairy outfits: Most of it I found on Amazon, all linked here

Fairy houses and accessories: Houses and mini mushrooms I found online & the rest I grabbed at the dollar store like the moss, clear stones, and butterfly stickers. Similar items here
**Dollar store is a great place to browse for cheap craft stuff. (the adults helped hot glue the stones and moss on once the houses were painted)

Craft paint: All the craft paint I grabbed for .50¢ each at Walmart--  a little tip: I chose 6 colors that all coordinated so it wasn't a big eye sore of color by the end of it ;)

Table decor: I usually browse the birthday section at Target for some cute things, like the gold paper plates and scalloped white table cloth. For flowers I bought the greenery fillers and cheapest pink ones at our local grocery and sprinkled them around the house in jars to add a pretty touch. I used the moss and stones and wooded tree pieces we had laying around as the center of the table to make it look "fairy garden" like. 

Cake: I love to have my kids bake the cake with me and decorate it together for their party--a little tradition we started a couple years ago. I found some fun edible glitter spray and sprinkles in the baking section at Walmart for these that I've used over and over again for the last few parties. (Walmart surprisingly has a ton of fund baking stuff to make cakes and desserts pretty if you're into making them yourself)

Cake topper: I was inspired by this pin I found on pinterest and made the number 5 myself with glitter

Fairy crowns: I made these myself out of craft things we already had at our house and grabbed some fake flowers from the dollar store to add. I will give a little tutorial on that soon! 

Fairy wings: These I also saw at the dollar store (win!!) and grabbed 8 of them for the kids. They were an ugly lime green color to begin with so I bought gold metallic spray paint to change them up and make a little prettier.

Final touch--Fairy topper Illustrations: The little fairies I illustrated and taped onto a wooden stick and place around the flowers and on top of the cake was a last minute idea I had. My girls are ALWAYS asking me to draw things for them these days so it felt fitting to draw them a fairy for their party too. They were quite a hit with them!

I wanted to gift these fairy illustrations to you as well just for saying "thanks" for being here and following along! Simply download the illustrations here, cut them out and add a stick to the back with some tape or glue. If you end up using them I'd love to see how it turns out so don't forget to tag me on Instagram @coleykuyperart #coleykuyperart.