we celebrated oscar’s fifth birthday last weekend with a couple of his favourite things: camping and plenty of sugar. i took very few photos once the guests arrived, but definitely documented the decked out campsite well 🙂
we celebrated six with sharks of all sorts and hundreds of balloon ‘bubbles’. cole picked all of the activities — “let’s make a shark craft out of paper plates!” — and helped with the menu — “please make blood drip down the cake” — and was thoroughly pleased the whole afternoon through. we hung the bubbles the night before the party and woke to all of them tangled all over the floor, so i might suggest something other than scotch tape on a popcorn ceiling if anyone wants to recreate the idea, haha. (this also explains why there are only a handful of photos; we finished setting up approximately thirty seconds before guests began to arrive.) overall, the perfect afternoon for this shark loving dude!
it’s hard to not let your heart explode when the girl requests a craft birthday party and you throw craft parties for a living. lila and i had such a blast planning the decor and crafts (and snacks, and colours, and flowers) for her made social party last month. complete with all things blush and gold, lights strung across the living room, blooms from our favourite florist fabloomosity, it was the perfect evening with all of her best pals. they made yarn wall hangings and each got a custom name kit to stitch, played party games, and ate a zillion sweets. pretty much a nine year girl’s [and maybe her mama’s too] dream come true.
when the holiday inn express west edmonton got in touch with me to chat about their new property opening up near the west edmonton mall, i jumped at the chance to head there to check it out with the family for a weekend. we’ve been wanting to try a staycation and the timing was perfect — we actually celebrated our eleventh wedding anniversary there with the kiddos and didn’t even have to cook or wash dishes 😉
this new hotel is unique to edmonton as it’s IHG’s first dual-branded property in canada, with the holiday inn express on one side for short term visits and the candlewood suites on the other for longer stays, but the most exciting things for our kids (and us) were the family friendly amenities and the proximity to the mall (yay shopping!)!
lila is currently going through a phase where she loves to know the weather forecast at all times so she was more than thrilled with the interactive screen in the lobby on which she could check out the day’s weather, among other things, and the boys were most excited about making up the couch bed for themselves. having three kids, it’s sometimes hard to find hotel rooms with enough sleeping space for everyone so having the two beds plus the pull out couch was a welcome change and we quickly made ourselves right at home. (meanwhile i was impressed with the modern decor and clean lines that aren’t always to be found in hotel chains!) next on the agenda, was checking out the pool, which mark and the big kids would have loved to stay all day. oscar and i were perfectly content to hang out in the hot tub while the sunshine streamed in through the giant windows (a photographer’s dream come true). while there isn’t a full restaurant in the hotel, they do serve up a pretty awesome little complimentary hot breakfast buffet. the kids were, of course, thrilled by the plethora of cereal options that we don’t usually have around the house, and even more excited to watch the hotcakes slide out of the one minute pancake machine! after breakfast we headed over to west edmonton mall for a round of mini golf with the cousins and a bit of shopping, because what’s a staycation in edmonton without hitting the second largest mall in north america, especially when it’s just minutes away? 😉 (for those of you unfamiliar with our mall, there’s also the option of ice skating, the water park, an indoor amusement park, a mirror maze and a small aquarium if your heart so desires!) overall, our staycation was a total success, thanks largely in part to the hospitality of the holiday inn express west edmonton, and we can’t wait to do it again!
next month lila is turning SEVEN (what?!). probably time i share last year’s party before it’s time to throw this year’s 😉
quick highlights: the girls decorated sugar cookies and individual letter canvases from michael’s , played pass the parcel and twister, and LOVED the confetti toss!! make a wish balloons were from confetti sparkle, the confetti print that inspired the whole party is by bianca cash, the wall confetti is just cardstock we punched out and stuck to the wall with double sided tape (thanks to christine for spending the night before the party drinking bubbly and helping hang it with me!). any other questions, ask away!
i recently alluded to a little something special that my lovely friend christine and i have been working on, and i’m so excited to finally chat about it a bit here!
earlier this month we hosted our inaugural made social — a modern craft workshop that is equal parts fun night out with the girls, excuse to get a bit crafty, confetti photobooth, yummy snacks and a whole lot more. after frequent crafting adventures over the past few years for various parties for our children, holidays, business launches, etc., christine and i came to the conclusion that it’s so much more fun to do these things together than it is to do it all alone, and maybe there are other people out there who would feel the same way. that little idea grew into what you see below — a modern craft party, if you will, each one individually styled to reflect a specific season, or holiday, or event. (we’re excited to offer private parties — birthdays, showers, bachelorette parties, no-reason-at-all-parties as well as ticketed events open to the public).
which brings me to some exciting news — registration for our fall workshop, to be held on saturday, october 24th, opens THIS evening (monday, september 28) at 8:30pm. the link will be posted on our instagram account at 8:30 sharp and i have a feeling spots will fill quite quickly, so be there to get in on the fun!
my good friend christine and i (and all five kiddos!) were lucky enough to spend a morning in the studio with local talent uppercase press collaborating for a brand new venture we have in the works. you’ll be hearing much more about MAKESHOP. the social co. in the coming days but for now, head over to our brand new instagram account to enter to win one of these letterpressed but first, confetti prints!
black storm clouds loomed in the distance, light rain fell from the sky and crazy winds kept knocking down my little box city, but i was determined that oscar’s first birthday be the backyard party i had envisioned from the start. the crazy weather combined with a wee case of procrastination-itis kept most of my more ambitious ideas from coming to fruition, but in the end, the sun came out, the birthday boy had a great time, and we were surrounded by so much love and laughter that “what was” was just as special as “what could have been”. huge thanks to everyone who joined us, and especially to our friend rob for surprising us with this amazing video of the festivities (seriously! his tiny camera is so inconspicuous that i thought he was just snapping a few photos) and more than making up for the fact that i hardly picked up my camera all day.
it’s friday and time for the fifth and final giveaway of a very hanki launch party, in celebration of my new look and the transition from pink sugar to andrea hanki! (and if you haven’t already, you can enter the first (a lifestyle session with me) here, the second (my favourite things) here, the third (goodies for your home) here, and the fourth (kids’ fashion) here!)
today’s giveaway is a curated collection of some of awesome goodies to throw yourself your very own personal party (because, why not?!) from some awesome canadian small businesses and designers. it’s been so awesome celebrating this week with all of you and what better way to wrap up this launch party than with an actual one!