Unicorns are back!!

I remember being 6 or 7 years old and having an obsession with unicorns. My whole room was done in this awesome theme.

unicorn bedding

So when my daughter told me she wanted a purple unicorn party for her 5th birthday I was stoked!! I immediately took to ebay, craigslist and etsy to find this same set for her as a gift. No such luck. I settled for the purple and gray set from Land of Nod.  http://www.landofnod.com/unicorn-parade-bedding/f14696.

Back to the party, so she decided on purple and gold for her colors. I was unable to find party goods with unicorns so I settled on purple and gold square plates from Party City and coordinating napkins and utensils. Because there were no unicorn themed birthday sets I made my own.


Let’s start with the cake. I (of course) have no pics of the inside but it was purple ombre. For the outside we did marshmallow frosting with edible purple confetti on top. I made the confetti using rice paper (amazon) and food dye. Dab it on with a makeup sponge, allow to dry and then punch it out.


FOOD! The most important part. My daughter is the pickiest eater, ever. So I only did food she would eat. That included: doughnuts (Kripsy Kreme I hand dipped in purple royal icing), nutella sandwiches, purple tortilla chips, purple grapes, purple mac n cheese, purple jello, chicken and waffles (chic-fil-a chicken with mini eggos), cookies and munchie cups. The munchie cups were rigid cupcake cups with cheese, pepperoni, pretzels and mini ritz in them.

*How to make the Purple Mac N Cheese: I brought the noodles to a boil and then added food coloring paste. They turned out a deep beautiful purple. Then I bought velveeta queso blanco cheese and melted that and added the same color. It tasted great and was adorable.

food collage

For the beverages we had water and juice boxes as well but the punch was delicious. I used purple grape kool aid made to the package instructions, then added a large can of pineapple juice and a 2 liter of sprite. Also made ice cubes with gold edible stars in them so as the ice cubes melted there were stars floating in the punch.


Instead of goodie bags full of stuff that usually gets thrown away or more candy we had a painting party. The girls did unicorns and the boys did dragons. My husband made the easels out of a tree he cut down in the back yard. Everyone loved them and wanted to take those home too. Um, no!! The painting party was a huge hit and I will do it again! (Unicorns and dragons were made of vinyl on my silhouette machine and peeled right off after the paint dried.)

unicorn collage

We also had a real live unicorn to ride!!! (We had helmets, this was for a photo op)


For the unicorn decor I bought plastic unicorns and spray painted them gold. Some were added to the tops of purple mason jars. I also bought some brass unicorns on Ebay as well as a glass Avon decanter.

unicorn mason jar

These I had made on etsy by a wonderful seller who made them a little larger then needed and fast! They were here in plenty of time for the party. https://www.etsy.com/transaction/1048003393


So I really screwed up on the banner pics. I meant to grab a better picture and forgot. I am re-doing her room now to match the new bedding and plan on putting it over the windows so will try to update with a better picture then. It was dark purple, light purple and gold tassles. Gold glitter unicorns on each end and her name also done in gold glitter letters.  The unicorn head was also bought of Etsy and my husband made a mount for it to hang it from the window. It will be above her bed and I will also update with a better picture.

131 049

I’m dreaming of a white sandy beach for Christmas

seashell tree

We live only a few hours from the beach so we go frequently and every time we go we come home with a load of new seashells. We have them in bowls, mason jars and on shelves through out the house. Last year we actually decided to celebrate Christmas at the beach and I instantly thought a beach/seashell tree would be fantastic. The kids and I sat down one day and painted them all with blue, blue glitter and white glitter. Then I cut all the jute for the loops and just hot glued them on the inside. The kids were able to hang them all their selves and even remembered picking some of them. I used a mini tree we already had with a fishing net as the tree skirt and just some blue mesh ribbon from the craft store for decoration. It was very easy, cheap and yet so meaningful.

It’s Minecraft time

Are you a “creeper”? I know I am. I creeped every Pinterest post I could find about Minecraft and man was that overwhelming. When I started out, I knew nothing about Minecraft and I think my son had just as much fun coming up with ideas as I did. I handed him Pinterest and he handed me back a board full of 120 pins. Here are our favorites that we used and links to make them yourself all in one place. A whole Minecraft party in one spot.

Let’s start with things you can do in advance. Gift wrapping.


Green wrapping paper, red wrapping paper and craft paper.I used these images and cut them out and pasted them to the kraft paper. http://www.fps-x-games.com/2014/01/create-your-own-stampy-mask.html#more and http://www.fps-x-games.com/2013/06/free-minecraft-steve-head-printable-mask.html. The TNT was his favorite, red paper, white paper and wrote out TNT.

GOODIE BAGS! Always a big hit.


Green bags with creeper faces. http://t3hn3w13.deviantart.com/art/Creeper-Face-264253433 I printed it out, cut out the face with exacto knife and used it as a template.

Backdrop for the food table.


Excuse the glare. A storm came and the lighting was bad. Anyway, I ordered a minecraft poster from Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Trends-International-Unframed-Minecraft-Computronic/dp/B00BE719SK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1424293092&sr=8-1&keywords=minecraft+poster) and I glued it to poster board. Then I attached it to the jute rope and added tissue paper garland in gold, black, dark green and light green. Here is a how to on the tissue paper garland. You can make that weeks in advance. (http://www.thetomkatstudio.com/howtomaketasselgarland/)

This was my favorite thing to make and probably the tastiest! It was a huge hit. Homemade creeper peeps.


I have never made marshmallows before and this was actually quite easy. I made them on Tuesday and stored them in a air tight container. They stayed very fresh. Trust me, they are worth the hassle! Also pictured is the toppers for the brownies. I printed them out and attached to lollipop sticks. Peeps: http://www.saynotsweetanne.com/2013/mas/ Toppers: http://www.thepartyanimal-blog.org/Downloads/Minecraft_Cupcake_Toppers.pdf

I made the “cake pops” on Wednesday and also stored in a container until Saturday. I did refrigerate these. They were also a huge hit. All the kids loved them and once all the adults realized it was snickers they loved them too.


You will need candy melts in red, black, brown, green and white. snicker minis, lollipop sticks and edible markers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIuHKldZJmc&list=UUjwmbv6NE4mOh8Z8VhPUx1Q

On to the cake. I made the cake on Friday and the dirt block was so easy. I wish I could make a dirt cake every year.

050 051

The “grass” on the table came from Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Group-Adventure-Tissue-Paper-Grass/dp/B004L6L79W/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1424294511&sr=8-2&keywords=grass and the cake decorations were from Etsy. They were gum paste creations and I messaged her that I needed a creeper, TNT and Stampy cat of course. She put together a listing for me.(https://www.etsy.com/shop/FancyTopCupcake) The cake I made using this tutorial. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5vOTakaew4&feature=em-uploademail

For beverages we made “Lava” punch and “Creeper” juice.


The creepers are juice green mondo juice with creeper faces drawn on them and the lava punch was delicious. Adults and children alike both raved about it. Here is the recipe: 2 containers of vanilla & orange sherbet and 2 bottles of strawberry soda.

Now for the rest of the party food.

041 045 044 046 048 054

Grass block brownies: Used a brownie pan so they were perfect squares and just topped with green icing.

Rice Krispie Creeper Treats: Green food coloring added to homemade treat mix. Topped with creeper faces made of chocolate. I printed out the creeper faces again. (Just resize to suit yours) Top with wax paper and pipe out melted brown candy melts.

Creeper cookies: Square sugar cookies topped with green royal icing. Allow to dry and top with creeper faces again.

Creeper pizza: Digorno pizza sticks baked mid way then I top with pepperoni’s and put back in to finish baking. Made perfect creeper faces.

Hope this has helped some other moms with minecraft addicts in their home. It was a great party and I am sure yours will be too!

Do you want to build a snowman?

If you clicked on this post then chances are your house is Frozen obsessed too! We love Frozen, all things Frozen. My daughter’s birthday isn’t ’til August but I have been planning for a while. Recently she has wanted a Un-Birthday party so what better excuse to try out a cake? (That and a neighbor wanted a cake for her daughter. I agreed as long as she shared it with my daughter for her un-birthday.) We decided to make Olaf since he is a favorite of ours.

You will need:
13×9 rectangle cake pan
9″ round cake pan (2 would be great but you can make do with 1)
2 boxes of cake mix and ingredients
Icing of your choice (We used cream cheese. If star tipping do not use cream cheese.)
Carrot with a wide bottom
Cake board (I used 2 of these taped together with a board underneath for stability. http://www.amazon.com/Wilton-19-by-13-Inch-Cake-Board-6-Pack/dp/B0000CFN6B)
Royal icing with bags and tips to use for eyes, arms, hair and buttons
Brown and black coloring

I started off by baking my 2 9″ cakes first. Once they were done and cooling I put in the 13×9 cake. Once they are cooled off a bit I put them in the freezer on a piece of cardboard so they harden. After a few hours I started with the round pans again. Take one and using the cake pan cut of small chunk. Like a small semi circle for the bottom base. Take the other cake and cut a smaller circle for the middle part. I used a top from a sauce pan. Then the middle will fit in the semi circle to make up the body.
olaf For the head I printed out this image. I enlarged it using Microsoft Word to make it the size of the page basically. Once printed I cut it out and traced it onto a piece of cardboard. Then cut out the cardboard. Next get the 13×9 cake and place the cardboard on top. Using a sharp knife cut around the cardboard to get desired shape. (Keep the scraps to cut out nubs for his feet) Now put back in the freezer.
To start icing remove one piece at a time and dirty ice them. Basically just lightly ice and catch all the crumbs. Then put them back in the freezer and do the rest. After a couple of hours, get your cake board and put the body together as desired. (I used a grill spatula to place the dirty iced pieces) I placed mine similar to image above so his body is a little catawampus. Plus you need to turn them a bit to fit on the board. I used cream cheese icing to spread but if you want to star tip then use regular icing. I iced the 2 body pieces and then got the head and feet from the freezer and did those also. 036
Now that the base is done we move on to the arms and hair. I used royal icing from here on out. I took some and mixed it with cocoa powder to make a great brown. Using a Wilton #10 tip I piped out the arms, hands and hair.
037 Next I lightly traced out the eyebrows using a toothpick and filled those in with black royal icing using a Wilton #5 tip for all outlines. For round eyes I actually used my salt shaker and gently pressed it on the cake. It made a circle indention and then I piped the edge. Same with inner circle. I used the top to my toothpick holder and piped out the edge and filled it in. (Once the black is dry I went back in and filled the middle in with white icing.) Then also with a toothpick I moved down and traced out the mouth. Trace out a section for his teeth as well. Fill in the other part with black icing and let harden then finish his teeth with white. Move down to his buttons and just have fun. They are meant to be misshapen so it’s hard to mess them up. All that is left is his nose. I used a carrot and iced it. Bad Idea! Learn from my mistake and just use a carrot. All the icing fell off and made a mess. Looked fine with no icing. Just get a slightly bulbous carrot and carve down as needed. I added that right before serving and here is the finished product. olafcake It turned out great and everyone loved him. I made the cakes on Thursday and dirty iced, Friday I did the rest. We served on Saturday at noon. If you want to do the same make sure you have enough room in your fridge to keep him until serving. “Winter’s a good time to stay in and cuddle, But put me in summer and I’ll be a — happy snowman!”

We survived 100 days of school

My oldest came home with a project for his 100th day of school. This was new to me but I loved the idea. I love celebrations! We immediately came up with lots of ideas, of course his favorite was one already seen on Pinterest. I try to be original but it was his favorite so we went with it and improved it a bit. The shirt was just a plain white tee. I bought lots of different band aids and these markers.
fabric markers
Next I went to Microsoft Word and typed in the words “I survived 100 days of 1st grade and so did Mrs. McLawhorn.” I blew them up to a larger size and printed them out. Then I put them on a piece of cardboard and put them under the shirt. I used the fabric markers and traced the letters. The instructions say to let the paint dry for 24 hours but by the time I got to the last word the first word was dry. Give it 30 minutes and turn it over to work on the backside. Now is the time to get the kids to help. We counted 100 different band aids. Band aids these days are expensive, $4 for a box of 20. This shirt is only being worn for one day so I really didn’t want to invest that much into it. My husband had the idea of double sided tape and it was genius. We taped all the band aids on. They lasted the day but could be peeled back off and saved.
double sided tape
The shirt turned out great and he was very happy he got to help.

Lego Party Time

For a Birthday theme this year my son had a very hard time choosing between Duck Dynasty and Lego. Finally Lego won out. YES!!

Let’s start with invitations.


I made my own with cardstock using their template which was extremely easy.

In an effort to not be overwhelmed on party day I did as much as I could before hand. These can be made WEEKS ahead of time.

We looked at some of our mini-figurines and just free handed from there.
These were all hand drawn also.

Get your kids involved and let them take over this task.

We spray painted a propane tank yellow and I freehanded the face. It didn’t turn out as hoped but I was pushed for time and actually did this the day of. It was a bad idea. Do it a week or more before!

Again get the kids involved. Make a empty cube for a utensil holder and throw some smaller legos in a clear sanitizer bottle.

Juice boxes were a big hit!! (The lego ice cubes of course have to wait until the day of. They were made with a mold I bought from amazon. Ice Tea went into the container. Note: The soda was just for adults. I hate drinking from juice boxes.)

Now to the day BEFORE party time. I went ahead and made the lego pops. (They have a tutorial in a previous post


Also the day before were cookies and the cake.

I used a sugar cookie recipe and cut them into rectangles. Since I had so much leftover fondant from the cake I just used that for the top. You can use icing.

(See the cake in the left corner? Yep that’s the best one I have. Totally spaced out and didn’t get one.😦 My little helper was helping me roll out fondant for the cookies)






We had lego fruit skewers. (Bamboo skewers with printed out lego heads attached.)

Cupcakes with chocolate lego men. (Mold also bought from Amazon. Made using colored candy melts. The men can be made days ahead of time too.)

Veggie shooters. (Every year there is so much waste. So in a effort to stop that I found these little containers so everyone could have just enough dip & veggies.)

Lego candy. (Bought in bulk from Amazon)

Fruit salad. (YUMMY YUMMY)

Chips. (We reused old lego boxes for the containers)

Lego Pizza. (Digornio has these cute little rectangle shaped pizza. I think it was called dippers? or something like that. I bought the cheese version and put my own mini pepperonis on it to make it lego.)

Lego Head Pops

I will start off by saying that I was really scared to try this one because quite frankly I have tried cake pops twice and they didn’t work real well for me. I just couldn’t quite get the chocolate melts to apply evenly. So I took to Google to find out why. (Thank God For Google.) Turns out there is this awesome product called Paramount Crystals. Basically it thins the candy melts out without changing the flavor or color. (I bought mine from Amazon)
I started off by melting one bag of Wilton yellow candy melts in a glass bowl. Once completely melted I added 1/4 cup off crystals and stirred. I wasn’t happy with it so I added a little bit more at a time until I was. (Probably about 1/3 cup.)
While your chocolate is melting in the microwave go ahead and take some regular size marshmallows and put them on the lollipop sticks, that way once your chocolate is ready you won’t waste time. (It hardens quickly) Now that your marshmallows take the tip of your spoon and put a drop of chocolate on the top, now add a yellow M&M. I make about 8 at a time and then stick them in the freezer so they can harden. They will look like this.
Once they are ready you can now dip them in the yellow chocolate again. Now comes the tricky part. After you have dipped it you need to swirl and tap it until you are happy with it. It will drip off easily and just keep tapping until it slowly drips. That’s usually when I stop. Then I put them on my cake pop holder to dry. If you don’t have a cake pop holder then turn a colander up side down and use those holes. (The metal ones work best but if you are worried then try a lollipop stick by itself for a test)
Once they are all dry you get to be creative. Make sure you have some edible markers. These are what I use and you can buy just the black if you want to. (Amazon)
I had lots of fun with these.

A Mermaid’s 3rd Birthday

We decided on a mermaid theme this year since my daughter’s favorite time is bath time. We actually got a large above ground pool to use and have a “under the sea” party but that didn’t really work out. (My husband got very sick and didn’t get well until a few days before the party so we couldn’t put up the pool.) However once he was finally feeling better we decided on making a home made slip ‘n slide.


It was a HUGE hit! We used Large sheets of plastic from Lowes, pool noodles for sides, cut down wire coat hangers for stakes and at the bottom another roll of plastic and hay bales for the catch pool. We have a naturally sloped yard so with some baby shampoo and water it was ready to go. We had 15 kids and 2 adults try it out and it held up great!

Once everyone was pretty much exhausted we headed inside for cake!

The cakes

The ombre mermaid cake was made especially for the Birthday girl. I made my own fondant using Wilton’s recipe about 5 days before the party. I separated the one batch into 3 balls. Then added a different color blue to each one and rolled them up tight in saran wrap. On Friday, (the day before the party) I baked two 6″ circle cakes. While they were baking I rolled out the fondant and made my mermaid “scales”. I used the opening of a Wilton decorating tip like a cookie cutter. After the cakes were cooled and had been in the freezer for 20 minutes I stacked them, then I “dirty iced” them. (Which means a thin layer of icing, nothing pretty. It’s being used as a glue for the scales.) Then I started applying the scales into I got to the top. Now being completely honest I hadn’t thought this far ahead so when I got to the top I was pretty unhappy. Luckily my husband said “Add sand” and he saved the day. So I added a bit more icing to the top since it started drying out and while it was still wet I threw on some sand. I also had some pearl sixlets candy that I added and those were the Birthday girl’s favorite part. The number 3 candle came from Wal-Mart.

(Scroll to the bottom for the Sandcastle Cake tutorial. I featured it separately.)


Since the party was at 3pm we didn’t do lunch but I did lots of snacks.

Fruit- The fruit was just a medium sized watermelon that my husband cut into a “pail” shape and hollowed out a bit. Then I used cookie cutters and cut out honeydew, cantaloupe, & watermelon. Then I used the scraps and cut cubes and added them all in. I had some blueberries and grapes and threw them in too. In another picture you can see the grapes threaded onto a bamboo skewer. We labeled them ‘seaweed grapes’.

Cookies– You can see the sand recipe came in handy again as a bed for the sea star cookies.  I cheated and used refrigerated cookie dough and rolled it flat. Then I cut out my shapes and baked. Once cooled I used this recipe http://www.sweetsugarbelle.com/2011/07/outlining-and-filling-cookies-with-royal-icing/ for the icing. It was really yummy and I had lots left over.

Sand Pudding- The sand pudding was the sand recipe once again (Again I made one giant batch and used it for everything) and a pudding recipe. http://manouvellemode.blogspot.com/2011/08/sand-pudding.html I used her pudding recipe and then just layered each one over and over.

Sandwiches- The peanut butter & jellyfish sandwiches were just regular sandwiches and I cut them out using the same cutter I used for the cookies. My husband sure enjoyed eating the scraps from these.


Jellyfish juice-   Using 2 packages Blue Raspberry Lemonade unsweetened kool-aid follow the directions on the back. Once mixed add two frozen Pina Colada Mixes and stir well. Then fill to the top with Sierra Mist. I think I used about 1 1/2 cans. If you are using a container like mine you need to strain it because the Pina Colada will clog up the spout. If you are using a pitcher to pour it then you can half the recipe if needed. I used recycled Starbucks glass bottles to drink from. The water bottles to the side were Deer Park brand that I peeled the label from. Then I downloaded a water bottle template, inserted my clipart from Etsy, printed and attached with packing tape.  I refrigerated them until right before the party.

Veggies- I will tell you no one in my family is really “veggie” people. However I know many people are so we used cucumber and carrots for our “sea cucumbers” and “crab legs”.

Sea foam- COTTON CANDY!!!🙂 Seriously what kid or adult for that matter doesn’t love cotton candy.

There are a few things you can not see much of in these pictures. The large white bowl held Pirate’s booty, the Cheetos were labeled Mermaid Munch, the cheese triangles were Shark Teeth. To the right of the center picture you can see the sand dollar cookies. Again I cheated and used refrigerated dough that I rolled into balls and pressed flat. Then I added 5 sliced almond pieces to the center and sprinkled them with cinnamon sugar. They looked just like sand dollar’s and they were delicious. There was also a clear bowl full of gummy sharks. In honor of shark week it was labeled Shark attack.

mermaid2picCupcakes- I loved the mermaid tail idea when I first saw it on Pinterest. http://mrsdork.blogspot.com/2012/01/mermaid-tail-cupcakes-tutorial.html I just knew this is what I was going to use for the whole party. However after making my first batch I knew that I was going to need to have a plan B.  2 of them broke and honestly it just took forever to pipe them all out. Maybe if I had made the tails much earlier I would’ve been in a better position but as you can see I had a LOT on my plate and just didn’t have the time. I printed out 6 templates to a page and made 4 pages. I had 12 survive. So I made those 12 and using my sand again I whipped up 12 sandy ones also. I made the seashell candy molds in advance and truly forgot about them so I was glad to incorporate them in too.

350I had one happy little mermaid!

mermaid sign

Yes, I made the sign too.🙂

Sandcastle Cake

While planning my daughter’s 3rd birthday I decided upon a mermaid theme. I immediately knew I wanted to make a sandcastle cake. Browsing around online I found some really cute pictures and only one had instructions. (http://www.livingwellspendingless.com/2013/06/12/how-to-make-a-sandcastle-cake-tutorial/) I liked her ideas but I also tweaked them a bit. See below:

the cake

I made a large batch of sand for the cake, sand pudding, cupcakes, and I used it on the plates to sit the cookies on. I made up my own sand recipe because I found that graham crackers alone tasted like cardboard. I don’t own a food processor but my blender has a “crumb” button and that worked pretty well.

Sand Recipe
2 boxes Graham Crackers
2 boxes Nilla Wafers
2 cups toasted cocounut
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cookie part of the oreo

I used a 10″ well greased square pan for the bottom layer. My tips are I always use Wilton brand bake even strips and tap the cake pan a few times before baking. Once it’s cooked let it cool in the pan for about 10 minutes and then tap it out onto a cooling rack, wait another 20 minutes. Then I transfer it to the freezer for 20 more minutes. (This helps the cake stay together. Ever iced a cake and it falls apart? Not anymore.) Then I put it directly on to my cake server. The other two layers are 8″ & 6″ circles. I stacked all 3 levels before I iced them because I wanted the icing to be “tacky” so it would hold the “sand”. Once they were stacked and iced I applied the sand. I found this was probably the most difficult task and it really wasn’t that hard. I sprinkled it on, threw it on and tapped it on. They all worked! I used sugar cones and marshmallows as embellishments also done the same way. I cut the tips off the cones and put in the straws. They helped the cones stay on a lot better too. I also added “flags” to the straws that matched our theme. At Michael’s I found blue rock candy and sprinkled some around the base mixed with sand so it looked like sea glass. Also about a week before I made chocolate shells with a mold also from Michael’s. They were pretty easy and I refrigerated them until needed. I made all the rest the day before and wrapped it in saran wrap overnight. It truly was the highlight of the party. Nobody wanted to cut into it because it was so beautiful.

Just another Burlap Wreath.


I LOVE Burlap. There are just so many things it can be used for. It’s rustic and yet beautiful. For a while now I have been planning on making a wreath with it and a few months ago I went to Joanne’s craft store and they were running it on sale by the yard. So with a coupon I bought 2 1/2 yards for about $7. That night I sat down to make a wreath but everything I found on Pinterest involved using the burlap rolls. (They are $6 a piece) I decided to do more research and finally found one that works for burlap by the yard.

Here’s what you will need:
2 1/2 yards of Burlap
Hot glue & gun
Styrofoam wreath
Circle Template 5-6″ (I used a scrapbook circle cutter for template)

Lay your burlap out flat. You can either trace out every circle then cut or hold the template and cut around it. (That’s what I did) I recommend cutting at least 2 yards before hand. That way if you need more you can cut it and won’t waste any if you don’t need it.

Plug in your glue gun and put the wreath down flat in front of you. Once your glue is warm take your circles and fold in half and then again. Place glue at the bottom of circle and attach. (So that the loose ends of the circle are sticking out) From then on just work your way around the wreath. They do not have to be right beside each other. You can do 1/4″ or 1/2″ between. If you need to go back in fill in you can or you can wrap the wreath in burlap before you place circles. I did not do that but I might next time. Note: You will need more burlap for that.

The fun part is you can add whatever you want. Fabric flowers, a brooch, starfish etc. I plan to make more burlap crafts using the same method. Stay tuned!