Browsing Category: Celebrations

Ninja Piñata!

Happy Monday to you!

I wanted to share how I made the Ninja Piñata for my son’s birthday party.

You might be thinking, “I’m never going to do this project!”  And seriously, I hear you.  But never say never!  I’ve found that the techniques I used here can be applied to lots of other projects.  You’ll see!!


Here’s what you’ll need:

-Newspaper or butcher paper cut into strips

-Vessel for water

-A few cups of flour

-A balloon

-A small box

-2 paper towel rolls or 4 tp rolls


-Rope for hanging


-Crepe Paper *Optional

And obviously, you need some inspiration!  I found this during a google search – I loved the cartoonish look of it!


1.  Tape your box shut and make a bunch of slits in it.  You don’t want it too secure or else it will be difficult to break…use your judgement for the age group.  Tape the rolls where the arms and legs would go.  Blow up the balloon and secure it with tape.

You’ve got a little body!!

DSCN3058With some extra newspaper, wad up balls and attach them to the ends of the rolls with tape.

DSCN30612.  Secure the Rope to the body.  I used tape to make it super easy!  Just remember that eventually the balloon with deflate and you’ll have a lot of slack on the top.  Also, don’t just tape it to the balloon, secure it around the body.

DSCN30593.  Make the paste!  With a little flour and water your newspaper will dry quickly and strong.  Is your mixture runny?  It should be!  You don’t need much flour, so don’t go for a full paste consistency… think more creamer-like.  Promise!


4.  The fun part!!  Just start dunking your newspaper strips and laying them on the ninja body.  Try to do 2 vertically, then 2 horizontally.  On the limbs, do a few going from body to toes, and then wrap a few strips around, overlapping the strip on itself.  This will smooth all the seams and keep the body from falling apart… before anyone whacks it, of course!


I actually did 3 different layers on this piñata.  I kept my flour water mixture in the fridge, so I didn’t have to start over each time!  Yay, for avoiding dishes!!

Can you see that the ninja’s nose got a little concaved?  When I opened the back, I simply pushed it back out with a knife.  Sometimes solutions are that easy.


Now, paint it up!  For fun, I added a few loops of crepe paper around where the bandana would tie and the sash of the robe.

Cut the back open and fill it with dulce!  Stay away from candies that melt in the sun!  And try to add in a few light toys.


Hang and Enjoy!  Or should I say, smack the heck out of it!

My friend said it was very therapeutic for her.  Maybe I’ll make one for my next birthday…. or bachelorette party?  That would be an interesting one to explain to the kids…why there’s a huge “talent” on the table.  I think I’d rather take the birds and bees conversation over that any day!!

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Piñatas are just fun!!  I love ’em!  I even had one at my rehearsal dinner – ’cause I’m dope like that… or a big lush.  Same, same.

Just don’t get hit with the stick.

Happy creating!  Jessica

A Pancake Samurai Party!

Yes, you heard me right.  Pancakes and Samurai’s.

Let it simmer for a second.

Did it just hit you that my twins, who just turned 3, had a pure genius idea?!  Well, actually that’s not exactly how it happened… I asked each of them what kind of party they wanted to have.  Zander had decided months before that he wanted a Pancake party, which he declared after a breakfast feast of (you guessed it) pancakes.  Cruz, who’s been obsessed with swords for like ever, said he wanted Samurai’s so he could get “lots of swords,” (my own worst personal nightmare).

Hence the Pancake Samurai Party was born and I think it was a huge success!

Combining their ideas was my little way of making each of my boys feel special.  Even though, ‘cummon, sharing a birthday with your bff is seriously fabulous!  I would love to do that every single year.  Yes, I would.



What do you need for your own Pancake Samurai Birthday?

Definitely a big birthday banner!

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Lots of INFLATABLE SWORDS!  And tough samurai’s dressed in towel samurai robes, made by mom, of course!

Nightmare averted.

Water balloons are much, much a bit safer option.  Love to see the parents beaning their kids = free therapy bonus!!




Climb Samurai Summit to claim your sword!!  DSCN3092

Ninja balloons.  Um, duh.

And a ninja piñata to beat up.  Samurai’s don’t like ninjas, so I’ve heard.



Pin the sword on the super pancake.  Hey, the kids liked it.

I took this one from the ol sorority days… seriously you can pin something on anything.  Am I right?!  Such a versatile game.



And to eat?  Well fancy pancakes, of course!  Or crepes as the French Samurai’s call them.  And boba.  You’ve gotta have boba.





What more could a set of 3 years olds want?



I only got one complaint… that the swords were not “real” Samurai swords.

Can’t get anything passed these guys.

All in all, a great day!  With some fun projects that I’d love to share with you!

Happy Creating and Celebrating!  Jessica

How to Make a Rose Cupcake Display and other fun things!


How’s your week going?  I’m trying to finish up as much as I can for the finale of the One Room Challenge going down on Thursday morning.  SO MUCH TO DO CANNOT SIT STILL

Not good for my cankles, yo.  Week 37.  Oh, yeah that’ll be going down very, very soon too.  And do you think this kid’s got a clean car seat and bed to sleep on?  I swear, Next Week!!

But I wanted to continue the fun in sharing a few of my nifty projects showcased at Yaso’s Bridal Shower.

Namely, these


They are Rose-flavored, rose-shaped cupcakes on a rose bush.  And in keeping with the Mad Hatter theme, of course, they’re white roses that the queen has decreed should be promptly painted red.  I think I was the only one who got that reference, but I thought it was terrific.  (No confidence issues, here!!)

You can use this technique for ANY kind of cupcake!  Sky’s the limit!!

And do you know what?  They only cost me $2.50 to make!!  And seriously about 20 minutes each.

That’s bomb.

Start off by purchasing a strainer and 1/2 yard of felt.


Turn the strainer over, and cover it with the felt using hot glue.

Seriously.  That’s it.


Put in toothpicks were the strainer slits are.  Should be nice and snug.

And using the leftover felt, make some cute little leaves.


I made these a week before the party and on the day of, I simply secured the cupcake rose onto the toothpick.


Not too tough, right?!

How about a super cute cone display for popcorn or cotton candy or whatever else you can dream up??

All you need is a trash bin sold at most dollar stores, some ribbon and wrapping paper.


I used tape to secure the ribbon (in a basket weave pattern) and put a few drops of glue between the ribbon to give it more strength.


To make the cones, simply cut squares out of your paper.  Mine were 7×7 inches, and I secured them with a bit of hot glue.



Here is the Eat Me template I made for my heart shaped blueberry scones.


I cut these and poked ’em through tooth picks.  Yummy!!  I could totally go for a few of those right about now…


Another simple but charming little craft I did, was to gift each guest a vintage tea cup.  I used a butterfly punch to cut these out and they stood up perfectly on the rim!!


Hopefully there are some ideas in there that get your wheels spinning!

I’d love to see any photos that you may have of your celebration creations!!

And as always, Happy Creating!  Jessica

How to make a Tea Pot Topiary!

Welcome Amigos!

I’m so excited to share with you how I put together the centerpieces for my GF Yaso’s Mad Hatter Bridal Shower.  Please make sure you check out the pictures if you haven’t already!

Here’s what I was able to put together using mostly stuff I had lying around the house!


So cute, am I right?!  And it would work for a bunch of different celebrations other than a tea party… maybe Easter, Princess Party, Book Club, Baby Shower – lots of options there!

First things first.  Do you have a tea pot?

I didn’t have anything like this, so I started going to a few thrift shops once a week to scour for unique pots and tea cups.  Each of these was $5 bucks or less!


Randomly, the polka dot one was from Ikea!

I didn’t want to ruin the actual pots, so I made bases for the topiary sticks using plastic cups filled with plaster of paris.

Find the largest cup that will fit the lip of the pot.
Find the largest cup that will fit the lip of the pot.


I filled the cups 1/2 way with water and then added spoonfuls of the plaster until there was a pudding consistency.  For the stick?  An extra long chopstick that’s used for cooking.  I grabbed a pack of 5 for $1.50 at Daiso, a Japanese dollar store nearby, but I’ve seen these all over the place.  You can also use a dowel for a steal and cut it down to size.

To keep the chopstick in place, I simply taped it to one of my kitchen cabinets for stability.  The level is out, but really I just eye-balled to make sure it was straight, from all angles.

It looks like an ordeal, but it took me about 15 – 20 minutes to do 4 of these cups.  They set up quickly, so do one at a time.  Give em a good 2 hrs before moving them just to be safe.

Next up?  The actual topiary balls!

I snagged a bunch of shredded paper from my office and used flour!  That’s it!!!


Fill a plastic shopping bag 1/2 full with your paper (don’t use all your paper just yet!) and gradually add water until the paper is mildly saturated.  Then add flour until the paper starts to break down and feel a little slippery.

To form the actual spheres, take some dry shredded paper as the center and then cover them with the wet, slimy mixture.  They will dry much faster this way!


After a few hours of sitting outside some of the spheres began to sag under the weight.  I just rotated them, but I didn’t stress about it too much because…

As soon as they’re dry, you’ll cover them in moss!


Using my trusty glue gun, I simply attached chunks of moss at a time.

Make some holes (I actually busted out the drill!) and thread them on your topiary chopstick.

Now you can decorate them anyway you like, but I used ribbon and book pages to embellish mine.

Cut out butterflies with a paper punch.  Two punches for each butterfly will give you a 3D effect when they’re stacked.

Make your ribbon flowers.  I learned how here.  Here’s my tip, though, DON’T cut your ribbon until AFTER you make the flower.  That will save you sooooo much ribbon!!  With one dollar spool from Joanne’s I was able to make 12 small flowers since I didn’t waste any!!

With very thin, pliable wire, wrap your chopstick around the base of a sphere 4-5 times and glue the end onto the ball, hiding it in the moss.

Can you spot the wire there??
Can you spot the wire there??

Attach a butterfly or two on the wire so that it looks like it’s flying around your topiary!


Then attach your flowers and butterflies using a glue gun.  I did two variations… one with flowers on the actual topiary spheres and one with flowers hiding the chopstick.


Using double stick tape, I secured the plaster of paris cups to the inside of the tea pot.  That worked well for the larger tea pots, for smaller ones, you might want to add some small pebbles, rice or colored sand for extra support – especially if it’s windy outside!


How super cute is this on the table?!  And then you can give them to the guests as party favors/gifts or hey, keep ’em for yourself!!

I’ll share more party ideas in a few days!

But what do you think?  Totally doable, yes?!?

Happy Creating!  Jessica

A Mad Little Bridal Shower!

Hello Friends!

So, it happened.  The shower has come and gone (bittersweet) and now I get the fun part of sharing all the special little details with you!  Yay!

For today, maybe just a few pictures and tutorials will be out in the next few posts.  Coolio?


There’s me on the left, with “my girls!”  We’re having fun with our summer hats and perfect weather!


See those adorable tea pot topiaries peaking there?  I’ll show you how I made them with stuff I basically had on hand!


Check out the cotton candy buckets, rose cakes, hanging circle and book page garlands… yup, all that knowledge will be yours to yield!


A fun little perch for the Bride to be!  She didn’t have to wonder where to sit… right in front of blueberry scones with “Eat Me” tags.  The less thinking the better, no?!

You can also see that I set up a few coffee machines in the back for hot water and cafe… it’s a tea party and you need lots of tea, of course!  But who wants to be running back and forth heating up tea kettles??  Not me!


Each guest went home with a vintage tea cup, embellished with a butterfly cut-out and a sweet wish for the bride.  Here you can also see the book runner made with pages of a book and some glue!  Easy stuff that looked so whimsical!


No shower would be complete without a little roasting of the bride!  Here we’re testing her knowledge of the groom.  She did great!!  And that sash?  Ya, I’ll let you in on how I made that too!

I must thank this guest for having her hat cover my belly in every shot!!


Guests are filling out fun little advice cards to put in a glass canister as a gift to the bride.  Makes for great Sunday morning laughs during the first year!!



No tea party would be complete without a little signage!  You can make your own with arrows printed on colored paper and a spare cardboard roll – I used a fabric roll since it was sturdier and I had one on hand.  Just wrap it in crepe paper and glue your arrows on!

I’m super happy with how everything turned out!  It did take a bit of planning, but hey, I’m all about a fab party with unique, personal touches.

Have a wonderful day my gems!

And check in on Thursday morning for Week 4 of the 6 week room challenge!!  Needless to say that it’s getting close to the wire and I’m working hard to get ‘er done.

Tootles!  Jesica