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Monday, March 28, 2011

Kissi's Princess Party Preperations

I really don't know why I keep doing these ridiculous things and fussing over such small details that really are inconsequential but I am, God help me! So far I hand made Kissi's invites, I will post them soon, I cut the invites and the envelope on my cricut and wrote the invites out with the computer I had to figure out MAC rich text program to make a spreadsheet, but I did, then I used fancy cutting scissors and glued worded part inside. I embellished the front of the card with a crown that had a #3 cut out in the center. I used my Cricut like a mad woman, the invites also had a fancy cutting in the top portion that read, "PRINCESS PARTY"-really cute.

The center pieces I made are so cute I got for a steal, they are clear paint buckets (I have a feeling they will be used for many parties!), that will contain pink tissue paper enwrapping a silver balloon weight that has metallic tissue paper and sparklers. The base of the paint can will have white feather boa wrapped around it and a glass slipper hidden somewhere in the center piece. Each center piece will have one accent balloon (adults tables will have pink metallic stars Food table will have "Happy Birthday Disney Princesses" & gift table will have HUGE birthday cake) one pink, one lilac, and one white balloon. I made tags with princess icons and punched a hole in them they will attach to each balloon with a cascade of curly ribbon tumbling down about 2-3". The balloon bundles will be held tightly in a Diamond effect  making a sort of topiary with pink tulle stretching from the lowest balloon to the balloon weight about 6". I made name tags w/the girls names, so each attender gets a balloon bundle to take home (minus the paint bans!) The tables will have purple organza ribbon & pink tulle bows on each end and each chair (maybe) will have the same bows on the backs.

For the food table I made little paper dolls to resemble the Disney princesses; Belle, Ariel, Tiana, and Cinderella. I will place them on the food table beside the dishes that co-ordinate such as, Tiana's Froggy Fruit Kabobs, Bipity-Bopity-Boo Cheese Ball, Belle's Farmer's Market Tray, Under the Sea Jelly delights. The cheese ball is a really pretty Raspberry Ice Cheese ball that has white Sugar Crystal topping, I might throw in some pink sparkling crystals too. The Jelly Delights, are going to be grape jelly and strawberry cream-cheese sandwiches cut out with a "star" cookie cutter and sprinkled with purple crystal shimmer sugar, the fruit kabobs are going to be cut up strawberries, grapes (white & red), and cut up oranges all brushed with purple luster dust to make them "shimmery". They will placed in silver container with 'Karisa' in crown font with ice blue ribbon.

The name plates were cut with a beautiful tag and will attached to a pop-up place card with shimmery glitter dots accenting it. The table will be pink with "Happy Birthday" in crown fronts gracing the front of table, held together with sheer organza ribbon and twine-real shabby-chic style. This table will have 2 sets of center pieces each with a "Happy Birthday" princess balloons and I think I will make tissue paper pom-poms out of white glittery paper and hang from the area around the food and drink area and the area that well have a "princess ball dance party". IF I can get them too look right as well as this neat idea I saw for a castle container for chips-I will see if Jim can wrap it better than I can-if not I will just use Grandma Mowrer's  white mixing bowl, our lg square white bowl or crystal lg bowl. 

The drink area will have a punch bowl filled with pink lemon-aid and an ice ring with fruit frozen inside, coffee, and water bottles with customized labels I hand made with the word" Princess" on it with pink shimmery balloons I made the lettering with cricut pens and drew them in with markers and glitter glue, I hand cut each label-that when quick once I figured out how to use my slide cutter. They look cute and cost me literally pennies! I will use the counter area for the drinks to prevent over indepdant toddlers from spilling and use pink table cloth to princess it up along with princess cups I bought 24/$1 and princess plates 14/$1, napkins 48/$2 and the plates will be reg white as will the forks and coffee cups-no use spending all that money for a few plates when I get good plates for less and get mor of them!

Kids will have their size table with enter piece in smaller scale and they will also have a "craft table" for an ice breaker princess color wooden board and possibly color pages-we see how the time goes and kid's patience goes. Each chair will get the tulle-organza bow and I made the favor bag tags that resemble each princess in attendance-the girls will get a tutu, a crown, a safe wand (star foam, wooden dowel, and ribbons), a wand for home (that is pointy and a little sharp-not going to have any girl poking anyone at the party!), feather boa, and princess coloring book and princess crayons- got all of this for under $5/bag total-I think that is pretty good and not filled with sugary treats and chocking hazards!

We will have games, where a real life princess will lead! Like pin the crown on the princess, pass the glass slipper, princess parade, and princess ball dance party. First we will play pin the crown and then pass the glass slipper- we will play "glass slipper" (The glass slippers are 3" little wedding favor high heels-really cute 6/$1) like hot potato only each person who gets caught with the slipper when the music stops will get to be "princessifed"-I don't know how this will go, I think this will be a fast game so I don't loose the girls. After each winner has been princessified we will have a "princess parade", followed by a princess ball dance party. We will play Kissi's fav princess songs sprinkled in with songs that are just fun to dance to like The Chippettes and Laurie Berkner Band. I might get this bubble machine and add more fun to the party. I think if the girls r having so much fun I might let this go on and make the gift time quick. This is hard on the other girls, but I still want the gift givers to have the joy of watching Kissi open her gifts. Plus what kid doesn't want to open gifts?

The Dessert Bar, is going to feature dainty delights that princesses LOVE, such as White Chocolate Oreo cream Truffles drizzled in purple shimmery choco, Red Velvet Cake Pops which will be covered in Pink Shimmery Luster Dust Choco-very decadent,  Marshmallow Wand Pops- which will be covered in pink choco and dipped in white sugar crystals, strawberry yogurt covered raisins, pink wafer cookies, and the piece-de' resistance, will be the Enchanted Castle Cake up on the highest tier. This table will decorated in true princess fair! A pink table cloth will adorn the table with a shimmery pink fabric accented and tied with an organza ribbon in the front. The edges will have a feathery chandelle boa pink of course. The back drop with have 10 pink balloons all staggered in 2 heights with a "Little Princess" pic frame that will have a "Thank You for coming" saying or "Enjoy!" something like that.

I think I will have open "grazing time" for guests so that we keep the kids attention, I am not sure when to do the cake, I think I will do it b4 the games so the kids get the sugar rush outta their system, we will just see how that goes.

The gift table will have a "throne" beside it for Kissi to open her gifts (which is Jim's childhood rocker) embellished with purple Charmuse silk I got as remnant for .85 for 7/8 yard! and a pink satin with glitter swirls and organza ribbon plus tulle, very girly  !! I will place the decorated easel with the "princess Karisa" sign in case anyone gets confused LOL! behind the "throne". On the Table on a pedestal will be this 3-D pink and purple castle I made, I made a back drop with sky and grass, don't know if I will use it yet as I think it might detract-but it might help keep it safe at the same time? Jim remembered this picture of the Phillips' Family coat of arms from the medieval time period we got back in the 90's at a festival so I matted it and framed it, it will grace her gift table- I can't wait for the Phillips family to see that, it is really neat!

This whole party will cost me somewhere between $150-$175, I think it is pretty good considering all the decorations I and fancy stuff I got..I will post pics when I can and the grand total. Now I have to get on Izak's Elmo Party in July!! :-)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Italian Preztel Braided Rods

I just adapted a recipe for hot buttered pretzels for a spaghetti and meatballs supper, the dough tastes gr8, I hope the finished products tastes even better! I am writing it down so I know what I did, then I can tweak it later if needed:

  • 2 pkg yeast
  • 1t sugar
  • 1 1/4 C Warm Water
  • 5 C flour
  • 1/4 C Sugar
  • 1 T Canola Oil
  • 2 t Salt
  • 2/3 C of Parmesan & Romano Cheese
  • 2 T Italian Dried Herbs
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2t Dried Minced Onions
  • 4 Grinds of Black Pepper
Brine Solution:
  • 1/2 Baking Soda
  • 4 C HOT water
  • Kosher Salt
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • EVOO
  • Parmesan Cheese

  1. Mix Yeast and 1 1/4 C warm water in small bowl w/1/2 sugar and place in a warm spot while mixing other ingredients. Meanwhile in bread maker place rest of ingredients up to "brine solution".  Make well in center of flour and pour yeast in. Select "dough only" setting and forget about it for about a 1&1/2 hours. 
  2. Turn dough out onto to floured surface and divide dough into 12 or 14 equal sections.  Take each section and divide again to make 2 pieces and roll into each piece into "snakes". I do this instead of making 24 or 28 pieces, b/c it makes it easier for me to make them even. Take the 2 pieces and "rope braid" them by twisting each piece around each other and "pinch" the ends. Place each piece onto a greased baking sheet. Continue with the rest of the dough.
  3. Place Braided Rods into cold oven with only light on if u have a gas oven and cover with clean, damp, tea towel to let rise another 20 min. If u don't have gas oven place somewhere warm and draft free.
  4. After the rods have risen for 20 min, make ur "brine solution" with 1/2C Baking Soda and 4 C HOT water. Dip the rods into the solution and sprinkle with Kosher Salt. Bake in a 450 degree oven for 8 min or until golden brown.
  5. While dough is baking take 2 gloves garlic and saute in EVOO until golden brown. Discard garlic and keep oil to brush the rods with when done baking and finish with a dusting of grated Parmesan-Romano cheeses.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Awesome afternoon!

What a FUN morning we had @ the Perry Branch Stark Park and Library! We started off our morning with "the Little Explorers" where we learned about snakes and colored a paper, made a craft "snake"out of beads, even got to pet to snakes, one was rough scaled and the other was smooth. Both were a pretty pink brown colored. Kissi just LOVED it. They do these FREE little classes in the LL in the Science Room and they give u these little laminated cards on rings with each months lesson so u can review key points with ur kids, really neat. They do these classes once a month and offer 2 time options and repeat the class 2 weeks later. Did I mention it was free? We sat next to a brother & sister who r home schooled, what a gr8 opportunity for homeschoolers to learn some biology. We used it as an opportunity to review the letter "S" as well as the biology aspect, it held Kissi's attention and even Izak co-operated.

Then after the class ended we took a walk outside on the trail called Stark Parks Exploration Gateway, listened to different bird calls and we now know the "call" a Cardinal & Canadian goose makes. Kissi loved it so much she imitated it the whole time we walked, LOL! We smelled the awful  scent of "skunk cabbage" that is an early spring wetland flower that releases this, well yucky skunky-cabbagey smell, aptly named of course!  But still an opportunity to teach Kissi about plant life, these little guys will even melt snow and ice to start blooming. We both agree it is through it stinky smell, the snow melts from gagging on it, LOL! Izak fell asleep as we chatted about the birds, insects, and plant life we saw as spring is upon us.

We rounded out our afternoon by going back inside and upstairs to the library and found this fun book, THE POPCORN DRAGON" a real cute book about a dragon who learns how to make and be a friend (I sound like reading rainbow, huh?") IT was so cute as I read this book to Kissi in their children's area she sat on a humongous stuffed dragon and she acted out what I read. She wanted to play with the other kids, but hung back b/c they were doing things I wouldn't let do, i.e run around and on the furniture. But soon those little kids joined us and were acting out the book too, kinda funny that book about making friends drew the kids like a magnet and Kissi had new friends to play with. 

They all looked at me and soon we had the whole areas attention as all the little ones sat the floor surrounding me as I read, I guess I have some acting/reading skillz after all. The little ones cracked me up the way the interacted with each other and me.  It was so darling the way Kissi acted like a little mother hen to the younger ones and then she directed the play, what an imagination. Kissi even used the big girl potty, that was amazing. When we came back she said, "OK, Kids, IIIIIIII'm Baaaaaccckkkk!" So funny, she NEVER saw that movie of course, but she did a perfect imitation, LOL!

Real nice time, there was the fit at the end, ughhh! Don't know how to stop her from doing it, but at least she is getting better at calming down sooner. This one little girl who was left was NOT interested in playing w/Kissi and just like I do was perplexed that this little one wasn't apart of her "fan wagon" and was determined to get her to "like" her and play with her.

Kissi tried and tried to get her to play with her, she sat by her quietly for awhile then  did everything but stand on her head to get her attention. That broke my heart, I hate seeing her deal with rejection so young, only Kissi didn't notice the girl wasn't interested, she saw this as her playing with her. I wish I had her view point. The longer I am a mommy the more I learn I want to see life through my kids' eyes. I wanted the other girl's mom to make her play with Kissi, but this one lesson that Kissi taught me, maybe some ppl need others to just sit by them quietly and allow them time to warm up to others? I quickly will "write" others off if I don't get the response I think I should, interesting day indeed!

Izak fell asleep even b4 I had his diaper changed & Kissi fell asleep as I read her the "Popcorn Dragon" book, that was nearly 4 hours ago, REALLY GOOD day!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Haunting Memories...

As I am trying to sleep I am plagued with memories of the month I was in the hospital after I gave birth to Izak. It is so ironic that the fears that have held me in limbo for many years were in fact made very real especially during the first 2 weeks in ICU. The feeling of suffocating was ever present, with the breathing tube u have this tube shoved down ur throat & u have this feeling that u want to swallow and u cant this tube thing is in ur way, u want to drink and r so thirsty but u can't. All I was allowed was to suck on this disgusting bitter tasting sponge textured stick. That made me think of sponges sitting out on a counter top that had just scrubbed dirty chicken juices off.

U can't speak & u have this feeling u can't get enough air into ur lungs b/c this tube is doing it for u-but u still want the action of breathing on ur own and it is not the same like when u r snorkeling and forget to breath out of the tube instead of ur nose. At least that was my impression of it, the left side of my lung had collapsed so I am not sure if that was the suffocating feeling but it was so awful when they would feed me, I would feel as though some one was holding a pillow over my face and the panic would set in and I would want to claw and scratch my way out of there. At one point they were weaning my off of the tube and those times were excruciating and caused me to want to pass out from the fear of being smothered.

This one night I was scheduled to have a MRI of my lungs and for whatever reason the order slipped by the nurse on my rotation. It was nearly midnight and one female nurse who I really liked and one male nurse Michael who I loved, made a mad dash to get me to the MRI test on time. My bed crashed  into every wall and they shoved my humongous bed threw the elevator barely fitting in an attempt to get me there on time, all finesse was out the window. Apparently my bed was very hard to maneuver and b/c of the late hour transportation was not called and these nurses were not used to moving the bed. Each jar and bump was so painful as my abdominal wound was still gaping open feeling like my intestines could spill out at any moment.

It was a wild ride and the whole time my bed which had special air movement to it to prevent bed sores and some other things I guess I needed was deflating and scaring the hell out of me as I pulled every muscle trying to stay upright. When unplugged it went flat as a board, I couldn't get air to my lungs and the feeling of a gorilla sitting on my chest was so terrifying as I couldn't sit up due to the football size gaping wound in my abdomen caused by the debrasion the surgeon had to do b/c of the septic poisoning of my skin (peritonitis) . It was a hellish ordeal, I couldn't  breath deep full refreshing breaths- I imagine this is what an asthma attack feels like. My lungs were on fire and hurt like I had swallowed ice, each breath was not refreshing and caused me to take another breath that brought on more fire and ice.

The fear of being suffocated was so real and there was no where I could go to get away from the feeling, not even sleep allowed me peace. The hallucinations were so real and so vile they very rarely offered me any reprieve from the torture the waking hours held for me. My only solace was when I opened my eyes and saw family members there. Their caring facings talking soothingly to me, singing to me, offering me words of comfort and ice cold hands on my feverish brow were moments I lived for. Hearing their voices and being able to communicate the songs I wanted to hear were treasured by me. I will never forget the loving patience they showed me and the strength I rec'd from their reassuring words.