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a Calico Critters birthday party for Livie

The days are long, but the years are short.  That is one of my favorite sayings.  I keep it in my heart and I even have it embroidered in my studio.  It is so true and nothing reminds me more than birthday celebrations.

It seems that since we left Florida I have not gotten much done in the way of a birthday party and they used to be such a common thing for us.  The last proper birthday party we have truly celebrated was Mateo’s right before we moved.  We have had a few sleepover birthdays here for the bigger girls but nothing like what I have done in the past,  you can see a few of her others here and here.   I have given up I guess on the complicated and super planned celebrations in favor of something smaller and more intimate.  However, when my sweet little 6 year old comes a calling with the message that she would love to have a cake and party, this mommas heart flutters a little and then it shall be done but perhaps something small and simple.

So, we made out a list of a few friends to invite and talked about a theme.   In the past year, she has fallen head over heals for these cute little forrest animal toys called Calico Critters.  The first one was given to her by Grandma Yoli on a trip to Miami about 2 years ago.  I have quite a dislike of plastic toys but oh my, these toys make me feel little again and they are just so adorable.  So I made a mental note and invited her friends over that weekend.

It just so happens that we are also in the middle of a kitchen remodel (I was going to tell you, I promise) and every corner of this house seems to contain everything we had to take out of the kitchen.  So I did not really have any time at all to plan this little critter party and the internet was no help since I guess no one has really had a party with this theme much yet.

Simple would have to do and fits so well with these simple feeling little toys.  The night before the party, my procrastination finally jolted me into my studio to begin to make everything and really plan what I was going to do.  One night.  Everything in this party was made in one night.  Why I do this to myself?  No idea but  dare I say that after making these little critters a boat out of an egg carton and setting them up,  I feel like buying all the sets for myself and I envision making them little sweaters and accessories.  Olivia loves this thought and I will make time for it once all this remodeling craziness is over with.

On the day of the party, most of the kitchen looked almost done, with the exception of the new concrete countertops and the finishing touches but we got it all cleaned up just in time for the first guests to arrive.  You might catch a glimpse or two of the new kitchen details in some of the pics and I can’t wait to show you the whole thing!

Food was very simple, tea sandwiches, Livie’s favorite snack (bell peppers) with homemade dip, cookies and milk and of course cake.  She also wanted something animal related and sweet so we went with the organic bunny gummies.  She insisted on helping make the cake and explained that was old enough to mix the batter and help with the cupcakes.  Scooping the batter in the cupcakes was her favorite part and I realized I really did have one more kitchen helper to add to the roster.

As we all stood together singing her happy birthday I quietly ran through her past birthdays in my mind and it is hard to believe she is 7.  My pretty little chubby baby who is now all of a young little missy, busy with the business of being a girl, running around with the chickens and anything else that moves.  Climbing trees and playing in the creek. Everyone’s tag along and always the loudest noise in this very busy house.  She has never met a food she didn’t like and I can always count on glowing reports from her on any meal I serve.  Our little ball of laughs and drama rolled into a curly haired girl and presently with 2 missing teeth.

She loved everything I made and approved of every detail of her party.  Her one special day to be the queen of this castle and we all loved being her subjects.

Calico Critters birthday party

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These days… Holiday Edition

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12375992_10153318842503730_6196395200179260157_n2015 Christmas cardHappy New Year to everyone.  I feel like Saturday, my feet finally hit the floor.  Prior to that it was all a whirl wind of making presents and being present (at parties and functions), making merry around here and all that encompasses our holidays.  I do miss the general feeling of walking out into the world and everywhere around us celebrating Christmas also but I am happy to now celebrate the quieter parts of Christmas with just us since all stores, public areas and most of our friends have now moved onto preparing for the next thing.

If you have been around here for our previous Christmases then you already know that we are just getting warmed up and have only really started our holidays until a few days before Christmas came and went for the rest of the world.

Our holidays you ask,  oh but they were lovely!

These holidays we:

::  Went shopping to pick the fabric for this years Christmas bags as we do every year

::  Embroidered the year on this years two bags to be added to our collection

::  Baked gingerbread, sugar, chocolate chip cookies,  caramel puffed corn (oh my so good!)

::  Had friends over for a cookie baking and exchange

::  Made lip balms and sugar scrubs to gift to our friends with our beloved essential oils (more on that later)

::  Made cream cheese mints to go with the other goodies in baskets

::  Found that many of my vintage ornaments had been damaged when something fell on the box I keep them in.  Very sad but now I will start a new search for even more of them.  I do love them so

::  Decked every inch of this house

::  Spend many nights behind closed doors creating gifts for each other

::  Finally got my very own Christmas tree in my bedroom.  Something I have always wanted since I was a little girl.          (I do think it merits its own post so I won’t go into it too much)

::   Ate lots and lots of popcorn and celebrated another Christmas season together and then rang in the new year.

::   Had an evening away with Poppa which was quite fun and so good to be alone with my sweetie.  One benefit to having so many big children in the house along with a now 18 year old (though we still had a friend stay over for good measure)

::  Livie lost her first tooth

:: Watched an abundance of Christmas movies, old and new

::  Had a great laugh when we realized that Alexandra had chosen the same clothing colors for our grandsons as we did for our kids here.  Even though the miles seperate us, our hearts are still one

These days we are just resting and enjoying being off from school, until Epiphany comes around and making lots of warm and comfy foods.  There are many walks in our woods happening here.  The smells of our woods really does call me and today as we walked out there the sun came out and for a second it seemed to be shining down just on us.  I do not long for spring at the moment.  I am too busy enjoying this season as it is just getting started.  I am actually still working on the last gifts for family that will be going out super duper late and its a good thing that our loved ones understand how overwhelmed this mama gets sometimes.   All in good time and we love each other everyday not just on Christmas.

I do hope your holiday was lovely and I would love to hear about it!

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