Sprinkled with Love: Two Baby Sprinkles


I haven’t gotten around to posting much about baby boy on the way becasue it has been pretty busy getting everything ready for this arrival. There are still a few things I would like to get done and we are down to only 2 days to go! Lord, help me. However, he has already gotten spoiled along with me by getting two lovely baby sprinkles to celebrate his arrival!

The first sprinkle was thrown my a few of my co-workers and held at a beautiful bakery called The Cake Bake Shop. My pictures do not do this place justice. It is so beautiful inside and is owned and operated by Gwendolyn Rogers who has been featured on The Food Network many times for her amazing cakes and desserts.




Don’t all these desserts look amazing? I am very eager to come back here to try some new things! It’s dangerously close to where I get my hair cut so I will be coming back for sure.

Two of the hostesses and me.


I love this picture of me and my co-workers. Since they all work insane hours and go from nights to days it can be hard to get us together after work for any sort of event. I was so grateful for all them who came and celebrated with us.



The cake was so beautiful with the carriage on top. It was a strawberry and vanilla cake and it was delicious! The macaroons were rose flavored! It sounds so odd but was so good!





My second sprinkle was thrown by my two dear friends at a local restaurant that we all love called Stone Creek.


The cake and the cookies were so delicious and looked exactly like the invitations! I love the gray, navy and elephants.



Me and the hostesses: Diana and Jill.


We had a lovely lunch on a Sunday and Elin had to miss the beginning becasue her preschool class was singing in church for a special program they had been working on for weeks, but luckily she made it in time to open presents and have cake. She loved helping me open all the presents and hearing about what all the items were for and how the baby will use them. She even got a little big sister present.



I am so grateful for all my family and friends who came out to celebrate with us!

Thanksgiving Party

Elin had her first school party for preschool and I took off work to help with the games. I also got to volunteer and help the class for the whole day. It was so interesting to see their routine and see all the things that Elin talks about at home.

The days started with them putting up their coats and book bags and spending time before class began by working on puzzles. I was amazed how they all worked on their puzzles so quietly. Then they preceded to have story time, sharing time, outdoor running, and different learning stations.


Then for the Thanksgiving party, the kids had worked on special table runners they made and they had a snack of Chex mix and turkey-shaped cookies.


It was so cute to listen Elin talk to her little friends and how she interacts with everyone.


Then it was time for the first game which was Bingo. I was’t sure how this would go over since they are a little young for Bingo, but they seemed to catch on quickly and enjoy the game. I found this adorable game and had it printed and then I just used Cheerios for game pieces. I’m definitely keeping this game to use for future school parties for her. It seems like it would be enjoyed by many ages and I just used stickers as prizes and of course everyone got a sticker.


Then one of the other room parents made this adorable pin the feather on the turkey game and all the kiddos really seemed to enjoy this as well.



Then we played a simple game of hot potato with the kids using a stuffed toy turkey. The kiddos loved this as well and before we knew it, it was the end of the day and time to go home.

Elin’s class is so sweet and it was so nice to get to see the kids in action in the classroom. I am so glad I took off work to spend time with them and I plan on doing this for their Christmas party in a couple of weeks.

Disney Day 6

It was so sad to wake up on the sixth day of our trip and know it was a our very last day in Disney. We tried to pack as much as we could the night before so we could enjoy as much time as we could in the park.

I had to get some shots of the park from our hotel room on the last day.


The Grand Floridan hotel was also a beautiful view from our hotel room. I would love to have enough time to check it out on a future trip.


On our way into the park I noticed this posted above the entrance and I have no idea why I never noticed previously.


It was very crowded in the park and we didn’t have a lot of time to spend, but we managed to ride a few different things; one of which was the Peter Pan ride. It was an insanely long wait and in retrospect it was not even remotely worth the wait, but I felt like we needed to see it before we left. At least there were lots of things to look at while waiting in line. It took you all through the Darling household and had some very cool special effects as you saw TinkerBell flying all around.




By the time we got off the ride, we only had enough time to get Elin a quick lunch and head back to our hotel to catch the Magical Express bus from our hotel to the airport.

Check out the chocolate mouth. She had just devoured a chocolate chip cookie.


We arrived at the airport and Elin immediately spotted a Snow White statute and wanted to get a picture with it. She must have really regretted not getting a picture of her at Cinderella’s Royal Table.


Once on the plane, Elin got strapped in along with pink doggy, Gus, and Jaq and she enjoyed Mickey Mouse Clubhouse episodes until she fell asleep until just before the plane landed.


Elin was excited for her friend Kelsey’s birthday party the very next day! The party was at our local Gymboree and had a Frozen theme. This picture cracks me up because Elin was very focused on the birthday girl blowing out her candles.


Notice the room has completely cleared out but these two were s-l-o-w-l-y enjoying their cake. Catching up with a friend post-trip should not be rushed.




Such happy girls! Friends from birth to three years old.

Valentine’s Day Weekend


Since Elin is enthralled with all things Valentine related, I decided to have a Valentine themed playdate. When I floated the idea by her, she was beside herself with excitement! She knew one thing for sure….that she wanted cupcakes and balloons. She got a lot of inspiration from all the Valentine books we have been reading.

I made some heart garlands out of some pretty glittery scrapbook paper to make the house more festive. I have no idea why I decided making my own was better than finding something in the stores, but I love how they turned out and the scrapbook paper was super thick so they should be durable to use year after year.



We then got got some yummy cupcakes for dessert after our lunch of peanut butter and jelly cut into hearts, strawberries, and carrot sticks.



Last but not least, some pretty springy flowers were needed to brighten things up.



She was expecting two friends from ballet and story time, but sadly one could not make it due to a medical emergency. Although that was sad, Elin was super excited for her friend Lydia to come!

Lydia came bearing some very nice Valentine sweets! They both looked so cute in their Valentine attire.



The girls enjoyed eating at their little table by themselves. They switched spots a few different times and ate off each other’s plate.


Then they were eager to get upstairs and just play kitchen for awhile.


We coaxed them to go back downstairs to work on making necklaces. They enjoyed Valentine gummies and heart marshmallows while we mostly made their necklaces for them.


At this point, it was evident that both girls were getting tired and ready for naps. So they sat quietly on the couch for awhile and read and then watched a little Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.


I love how they have the same expression in this photo. They were both staring at the television, enthralled by it.


Even though the girls were tired they hated to part ways, they gave each other many hugs and held hands for awhile before Lydia left.



I think they had a good time together! I was thinking about how I should do this again next and then I realized that since Elin will be in preschool next year, she will start having holiday parties at school!

After a little nap, Elin was excited to have her cousins stop by for awhile. They exchanged Valentines and had some sweets. Elin got right to work playing with her new Minnie Mouse stamp set she got.





Then on Saturday, Elin went to a birthday party for her friend, Frances. The theme was My Little Pony and her mom and grandma outdid themselves with beautiful party decor and fun games! This was the first birthday party Elin has been to where there were games for the kids and Elin loved it! She wasn’t quite herself during the party due to a runny nose, but she had a great time and talked about the party the rest of the weekend.



They also made necklaces, wands, and got manicures. Elin will never let me paint her nails but she did it!! She let me paint them and seemed to love it! She let them dry and kept showing me her pink nails, but on the way home she sort of bit her nails and ate the polish off! I hope if we try it again I can prevent her from doing that!

PicMonkey Collage

All the kids were spoiled with awesome favor bags that were filled with lots of goodies. Elin is now a huge fan of “ponies” as she calls them and we watched a few episodes on demand when we got home. Elin also wore her party hat all evening long and we finally took it off her when she went to bed!

It was such a fun weekend with all the parties and festivities!!

Pumpkins and Party Fits


Last weekend we went to another pumpkin patch because Elin loves them and talks about them all the time.  We went on a Friday evening which worked out well because the weather was beautiful and there was not much of a huge crowd.  Elin was on a mission for a square pumpkin like Spookley the square pumpkin but alas he was nowhere to be found.  So she settled on a many others instead.


We have more pumpkins than we know what to with.



This particular orchard and patch was very pretty and picturesque.  There was a “cool bus” to pose with and Elin was excited to pose with her Papa.


Then on Saturday there was a Halloween party at Gymboree.  Elin was so excited and had been talking about it but let me tell you—when we got to party she threw a huge fit and was not in a party mood.  Her costume has a big tutu so I changed her in the back of the car when we got there and she was not a fan of that.  I think that is what set her over the edge.  When we got inside, she did not want to take her shoes off so they let her keep them on and she spent the first party of  the party pouting and being anti-social.  Isn’t that the saddest little puppy on the floor?


She perked up when she started noticing all the decorations and the non-spooky haunted house.



She spent a good party of the party in the haunted house with her pal Kelsey and they were very taken with this little ghost that made ghostly noise.  They would get in there and just shriek with happiness.


I thought the wall of felt monsters was rather creative.  They had a huge piece of blue felt up and then dozens of felt parts and pieces to make your own monsters.  Elin seemed to really enjoy that as well.


Then is was time for a snack and a monster craft.  Elin was excited to see pumpkin pretzels.  She currently loves pretzels!


She did a great job on her craft and we left a littler happier than we came.


Kara’s Party Ideas Feature

I am so excited that Elin’s second birthday party was featured on Kara’s Party ideas! I would love for you to take a look at their post!

Here is a link to Elin’s first birthday party post.


Tea Party – Part 2

Elin was so exited when she woke up and found out it was the day of her birthday party! She kept saying, “Birth de party” and “two” over and over. She was so excited and wound up that she would not take a nap!  The party was at 2pm. In order to get a good nap in before hand, it would have been an early one for her. Therefore, right before the party was about to start, she started acting sleepy and testy, but when she saw her tea set all set up and her guests started arriving, she perked right up.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

I was so excited for her to see her big gift this year which was a pink kitchen set. She loved it and has been enjoying it! I love this picture of her on her tip-toes checking out the stove.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

This tea set was a birthday gift she got on her actual birthday. You can never have too many tea sets! She was so cute getting tea ready before anyone got to the party.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin was excited to see her best gal pal, Kelsey. They are about 2 weeks apart in age and it’s so fun to see them grow up together.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin was amazed by her teapot cake! I have to admit it was quite the cake! I think the look on her face says it all! I had a special cupcake made for to eat and I was thrilled when she ate a decent amount of the icing! It was definitely a step up from last year when she refused to try her cake!

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday


Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin received so many lovely presents for her birthday. One extra special gift was a baby doll. She loves her new doll and all the little accessories that go with the doll. We have yet to name the baby so we just call her dolly for now.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin’s cousins, Max and Ethan were good sports going along with the tea party theme even though it’s not their bag.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

I love this hug captured! Even though no words were exchanged at the time I imagine that Elin was thanking Kelsey for her lovely gifts and Kelsey was wishing her a happy birthday and many more years of friendship.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

I also love these shots of Elin’s and her cousins.  Ethan is 9 and Max is 5.

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin's Tea Party Birthday

Elin’s Second Birthday Tea Party

Elin’s second birthday party was just 1.5 weeks ago and I am excited to share pictures and details. I couldn’t be more thrilled with how everything turned out. I have many photos so I will share the details here and then follow up with a post of the birthday girl at the party!

Elin has enjoyed playing with her tea sets so much this past year that I thought a tea party-themed birthday party would be just perfect for her! The theme turned out to be a little harder than I imagined to find elements that weren’t too “vintage tea” but yet not too modern. My first hurdle was to find the invitations and party prints. After hours and hours of searching I found Jo Studio and I found all the elements I was looking for in the party prints, right down to the exact pink, blue, and green color hues I was searching for.




Can we just talk about the gorgeous flowers?!?! In my wildest dreams I could not have imagined anything more beautiful! My florist, Rosemari is so talented. I gave her some inspiration photos and talked about my favorite flowers and she blew me away. She gets me and my vision and I just love her–enough said.



Nothing says tea party without some lovely small desserts. I found a lovely bakery that was up for the challenge of making a tea pot on the cake and specialized in french macarons. Again, I was totally blown away at what a fantastic job the baker did at matching my vision and color scheme.









Since this was a tea party theme for a child, I opted not not have tea but instead had sparkling pink lemonade, sparkling french berry lemonade, and water. They were delicious! The glass bottles also gave it a lovely vintage feel. I was able to also find some plastic milk bottle sippy cups for the younger children at the party.





I loved the look of these paper fans as a fun backdrop and I initially toyed with the idea of getting crafty and attempting to make these myself, but then I thought better of the idea and decided to leave this up to the professionals. Boy was that a good idea! I had such a positive experience working with Jennifer from The Papier Studio. The paper was thick and of a nice high quality. They gave the room great texture and dimension.


Last year I was thrilled to find paper plates from Hallmark that you could personalize with a photo. They were so adorable and I was so sad to see that Hallmark discontinued their party supplies on their online shop. After browsing I found something similar from Shindigz. I love the extra special touch that these plates add.


Elin loves balloons and I found these lovely and unique balloons on one of my blogger friend’s blog and Etsy shop. I love the cleanness of the clear balloon and the fun confetti in the beautiful coordinating pastel colors inside!






I had a hard time finding tea pots or tea cups that matched my theme.  I was ecstatic when I found this unfinished tea pot and pedestal at Michaels. My dad spray painted it pink and then painted the ruffle and knob white. I think it turned out gorgeous! I plan to keep this in Elin’s playroom as a decoration and a keepsake from her second birthday party.







Elin’s second birthday was a success and I was so blessed to have been able to enjoy planning and executing her party.

I will be posting part 2 later this week.


Vendor List

Photography: Alicia Monahan: Monahan Photography

Party Printables: Jo Studio

Cake/Desserts: Confectioneiress

Florist: Rosemari Herbert: McNamara Florist

Confetti Balloons: Meg-Made Shop

Bow: Chic Bella Bowtique

Paper Straws/Gumball Tubes: Lola Loves a Party

Paper Fans: The Papier Studio

Glass Milk Bottles: Amazon.com

Favor Boxes: Amazon.com

Personalized Photo Plates: Shindigz


Elin’s First Birthday Party

I have been busy trying to plan Elin’s second birthday party. I unfortunately haven’t decided what the theme will be, but I am hoping to figure that out soon and really get to planning. After I posted a picture from Elin’s first birthday party on my Five for Friday post, I got a few emails asking for more details and pictures. I have lots of pictures, so I am only going to post the basic detail pictures for party inspiration.

Elin’s birthday is on May 16th, so we had her party on that following Sunday. The weather was beautiful and sunny. When I started planning, I had no theme in mind but just wanted the party to be pink and feature the number one. The first main element I picked out was the printable theme. After searching through Etsy, I found the Chickabug shop and picked the “Pretty in Pink” collection. From there, I just tried to match the pink colors. Along the way, I found some awesome vendors and had a wonderful experience with each and every one of them.

Elin had a lovely day and I hope she has a wonderful second birthday in 2.5 months! Here are some detail photos from Elin’s first birthday.

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com


Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com


Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com

Elin's First Birthday www.simplejoysblog.com


Vendor Credits:
“Pretty in Pink” water bottle labels and party printables – Chickabug
Photographer – Alicia Monahan from Monahan Photography
Cake – Piece of Cake
Dipped marshmallows – Homemade
Florist – Rosemari Herbert, McNamara Florist
Candy – Candy Warehouse
Cookies – Sugar Dreams Cakes and Things
Picture plates –  Hallmark (no longer available)
Elin’s hat and bib – Dainty Couture
Elin’s birthday outfit – Mudpie
Bow – Chic Bella Bowtique
Fabric Banner – Stichin’netka