Tag / parties

Camp Crew (Crew’s Second Birthday Party)

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

We had so much fun celebrating our two-year-old Crew Man this weekend!

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

I’ll let the pictures do most of the talking, but between some painting with pinecones, scooping and dumping ingredients to make our own trail mix, chucking marshmallows into a bear’s mouth, and munching on hot dogs (and barbecue for the adults!), Camp Crew was a raging success thanks to his buddies who made the morning so much fun! I refrain from posting others’ kids (even my friends’ kids) here on the blog, but imagine lots of squeals and sugar-highs! 🙂

(Click on any photo to view it full-size!)

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Every camper went home with a canteen and a bag of gear (a.k.a. flashlight, whistle  –pretty sure the parents hate me! — and adhesive glow stars…so even if they didn’t get to at the party, they can sleep under the stars!)

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Page built the A-frame tent and I used the Target bear as a muse to paint a piece of plywood for the marshmallow toss.

Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday | swanky shank shirt

Crew's Second Camping Birthday | pillowfort target bear

Crew's Second Camping Birthday pinecone painting

Crew's Second Camping Birthday pinecone painting

Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday Crew's Second Camping Birthday

Crew's Second Camping Birthday log cake

Biggest birthday wishes to our happy camper! #campcrew

planning for Camp Crew

It’s still a few weeks away, but with the holidays between now and January 5 (and the inevitable slow-down in ordering/shipping/business hours), I’ve launched into planning mode for Crew’s second birthday party sooner than later. I’ve started to just consider it another one of ‘the holidays’!

Last year, we piggybacked his first birthday (that he was of course completely unaware of) with both a one-year-later housewarming and a general New Years celebration, hosting brunch with lots of friends and family. It was a larger bash, and this year we’ve opted to just make it about Crew’s birthday and keep the gathering much smaller with a few of his buddies and their families.

Camp Crew Inspiration Board | lifeinyellow.com

A January birthday in Iowa of course means celebrating indoors. But that didn’t mean we couldn’t bring the outdoors in. For his second birthday, we are opting for a chance to set up a cool tent and eat some marshmallows — a camping birthday!

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Between the popular plaids everywhere in seasonal merchandise (hellloooo after-Christmas clearance scores!) and the popularity of camping/adventure in kids’ home decor, it’s been easy to find a variety of items to incorporate into his party theme. I also feel less guilty about investing a little — I’m planning to use some of this after the party, permanently, in our home.

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I’ll be back with the full run-down and day-of photos, but for today, I’m excited to share where a great party all starts — the invitation! Envelopes came from Paper Source and I designed the invite myself. The oh-so-cute personalized address labels from Tiny Prints’ Holiday collection are the icing on the (birthday!) cake. I love that they introduce the plaid party vibe right from the start!

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I can’t wait to pull this all together — and I don’t even like to camp! 😉  More soon!

ONE in an instant.


We didn’t go all-out on a party for Crew’s first birthday, but I did do a cake and a couple decorations as part of our one-year-later housewarming / new years day brunch with family and friends. It was fun to do a party with so many people (about 40 stopped by throughout the morning), something we haven’t had room in the past to host. Birthday photos of Crew ARE coming…just not in this post ha! He slept through nearly the first hour of the party, and then it was go-go-go. I always sigh and figure if I don’t have pictures from when something is actually happening, it’s a sign it was a good time. 🙂


For the kiddos the bevvies includes chocolate milk shots…


…and for the adults, mimosa and bloody mary bars.


We had figured with so many parents of littles, we should stock up on coffee…but clearly this crowd was ready to drink. CHEERS! 😉


We kept the food simple. Fruit and donut hole skewers, which I repeated after serving at a baby shower last month (SO easy, and pretty to display!)…


…and sausage/egg/cheese breakfast enchiladas, which were still in the oven at photo-time 🙂



Understandably, the bakery could only make me a “camera” cake, as opposed to the actual Instagram logo, but I added a little color once I got it home, to get it a bit closer. 😉


Some Instagram prints, one for each week of his first year, were strung up as garland…


…beginning with my last belly shot and his first photo at an hour old. #sob #washereallythatlittle


Little camera viewfinder favors went home with the kiddos…



…and I made a photo prop that we totally forgot to point out to people until the party was over! ha! IMG_5919

A definite success. It was a very sweet moment to hear everyone sing Happy Birthday to Crew (who grinned at all the attention!) and to be settled in our home, brunching with friends, was a perfect way to kick off the new year.


Cheers to 2016!

the big O.N.E.


I can’t believe it, but I’m planning a first birthday party.

Yes, this little Christmas gnome will be *ONE* just after the holidays.


There are times it feels he’s always been here, but seriously…didn’t he just arrive on our scene, like, a few weeks ago?


I digress. (Otherwise I’ll start crying.)

With a birthday so close to the holidays, we’ve opted (at least for this first year, when he doesn’t even know what the heck a birthday IS) to roll his celebration, and our one-year-later long overdue housewarming, into a casual new years day brunch with friends and family. While he doesn’t need a single thing in the way of gifts, I DO want him to look back on pictures and see that he was celebrated. So naturally…the frustrated hostess of everything in me had to pull a little something together.

We’ll do a cake smash shoot sometime after the brunch, but when we do, I wanted to prop it a bit with some shades of metallics. Nothing too crazy (okay, the balloons ARE 40″ tall and will spell his name…Page is going to choke), but I figure you only turn one, once.

For the actual brunch, I do want to put together a little setup to reflect on his first year…I’m thinking it seems only natural to incorporate Instagram into the theme. 🙂 More birthday fun to come…stay tuned!

Update: Check out how Crew’s first birthday shoot came together here and the New Years brunch here

it’s gender reveal day! (free printable)

gender reveal free printable

I designed this little handout for tonight when we get the grandparents together for our gender reveal, and it was a fun way to let everyone cast their “educated” guesses, based on the results of some old wives’ tales!

For your reference:

  • more morning sickness versus less = GIRL
  • conceiving ON your ovulation date (not before) = GIRL
  • salty cravings = BOY, sweet cravings = GIRL
  • baby’s heart rate is OVER 140bpm = GIRL
  • Mom’s skin getting worse (breakouts, oily) = GIRL
  • a dangled wedding ring going in a circular motion = GIRL; back and forth = BOY
  • check the Chinese gender chart to learn GIRL/BOY prediction

I made a generic version without our details included, so you can print for your own purposes — simply check the boxes according to which way each tale points, and let guests cast their votes at the bottom. Happy guessing… and revealing! 🙂

Click the link below to access the PDF and print away to your heart’s content!


an adorable mothers day celebration.


The Alison Show

All of my own dishes and entertaining pretties are packed away in boxes, but as Page and I work to get the final stages of the move done in the coming days, I wanted to share another pretty post from the blogosphere. LOVE, love, love this “Moms Rule” brunch (and her printable place mats, among other things!).

Hoping to be back soon with progress on the move and more of our new temporary home!

Yay for mamas!

Set the Table: Easter 2014

Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com

I won’t be in town for Easter this year (girls trip!), but as I was packing things this weekend, I allowed myself a break to play house and create a fun tablescape as if I were going to be. 🙂

Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com

I like to keep brunch from feeling too stuffy, but still pretty and a bit feminine for the spring season. Other than some jellybeans, I didn’t invest in anything new to bring this look together. (Although I later realized I had some coral colored glassware I meant to set out with this look – it was a MEGA sale score from Target last summer – drat! I’m sure I’ll use it again soon enough!)

Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com

Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com

Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com

I don’t do much for Easter decor – it always seems a little cutesy to me. But I did pick some favorite Psalms and wrote one on a painted wooden tag (originally bought for the Oscar party, but never used!) and set one at each place setting. A shot glass of jellybeans at each plate was about as themed as I go for this holiday. 🙂

Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com
Easter 2014 Tablescape | lifeinyellow.com

And now for the “pan right…” and you’ll see a peek at the moving chaos already in play!

Anyone else planning an Easter tablescape?? I’d love to see! 🙂

Oscar 2014!

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

Another Oscar Party is in the books! It is so fun to host this little get-together, each year with a different group of girls (someday, I’m hoping to get all different friends who don’t know each other together for this, but until space allows…it’s on a bit of a rotation!)

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

This year’s scheme was Pantone’s color of the year, Radiant Orchid, with some black and white striped details, and (of course!) dashes of “Oscar gold”.

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

The theme for the evening was “Sweats encouraged, fabulousness required.” 🙂 It was a relaxing evening spent curled up in yoga pants and blankets, sipping and munching, and chatting away about who wore what (my favorite of the evening was Lupita’s blue Prada!) and which movie should win (I think Wolf of Wall Street was robbed).


Ballots were filled out, and bingo was taken pretty seriously (!)…

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

And cupcakes, cocktails, and snacks were on hand. (They didn’t make the photo cut, but tortellini skewers with various dipping sauces will be one of my new go-to food items – so easy and yummy even after they’ve cooled.)

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

And as always, the paparazzi lurked nearby along the red carpet…

oscar party 2014 | lifeinyellow.com

Cheers to a fabulous awards season!

Looking for more Oscar inspiration? You can find previous parties via the links for 2013, 2012, and 2011!