...because sometimes all you need is a little inspiration...

Friday, January 16, 2015

Cocoa & Conversation Relief Society Activity

For January, we wanted to keep it simple and we just decided to have a get together.
And we decided that the get together was going to be a hot chocolate party.
I mean, after I found these printables at {Upcycled Treasures} it was a must in my mind, cause Baby, it IS cold outside, and everyone wants hot chocolate when it's cold. 
And when I found this quote from Eliza R. Snow, it made me feel even better.  What makes you feel better than warm chocolate along with warm conversation?  Nothing.  The answer is nothing.
So, we got a lovely sister in our ward to host the party at her lovely, inviting house, and brought in all the fixins for a real party!  And this one was A LOT of fun to put together! 
I found these awesome little wooden scoopers and drizzlers on Amazon and prime got them to me right on time. We used the scoopers for most of the toppings, but to make the fudge and caramel sauces easy to apply, I actually put them on electric candle warmers to keep them warm and stuck a honey drizzler in them.  It was perfect.
The jars all came from the dollar store...and they were the perfect size!
I found the stir sticks in the craft section at Walmart, and glued snowflake buttons to the top...and I LOVE how they turned out!
I found these little labels on {Upcycled Treasures} as well, and because I loved them so much, they kind of dictated what we served as toppings, but the list was pretty extensive and I couldn't think of anything else I'd want anyway!  We had white chocolate chips, tiny marshmallows, crushed peppermint, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, cinnamon sticks, carmel sauce, and chocolate fudge sauce.  And of course whipped cream to top it off!
A little red and white bakers twine was just the thing to hold these labels in place.  I loved the way it all looked!  I brought in my snowballs, my snowmen, and my mini trees to round out the display, as well as some apothecary jars filled with pinecones and berries. 
My favorite purchase for this party is a toss up between the scoopers and these awesome cups, which I also found on Amazon.  I just loved them so so SO much better than foamy cups.  And they came with that awesome cardboard sleeve!  Then, these labels made them just theeee cutest!  I think everyone else appreciated them as well.  Plus, they had lids so sisters could take some for the road.  
Because one serving of all this just wasn't enough!  Gotta do at least two different versions of toppings, right? 
If anyone came to this party cold, they definitely left feeling warmed up. :)
I used {this hot chocolate crock pot recipe} which I found on Pinterest and everyone liked it, plus it was easy to make, serve, and keep warm in the crock pot. 
 We all just had a grand time visiting with each other.  Sometimes it's nice to just get together without a program!  
We are all sisters, after all.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Thanks & Giving Relief Society Activity

I got the inspiration for our End of the Year activity from this image I saw on Pinterest.
The holiday season is a great time to offer thanks for all that we have, but it's also a great time to serve.  And that's just what we did.
We started out the night by having a "Thankful Dinner" which consisted of 3 yummy fall soups: Butternut Apple, Cauliflower, and Potato Bacon.  We also served a bunch of different salads and some rolls.  I decorated using Thanksgiving decor including my {Thankful Banner I made and posted about here} which I love so much!
We set up the round tables in the Relief Society room and used real tablecloths and the real dinnerware out of our church kitchen.  We wanted this night to be special and using the real stuff just made it feel so much nicer! 
Different sisters brought centerpieces with the Thanksgiving theme for each table . 
And then we had several pies for dessert. 
Each place setting had a napkin tied with a dried grain of wheat and a tag that said, "So Thankful for You." 
So, the sisters came and ate and visited.  We invited the Young Women in our ward to join us for this activity which was great!  
And then we moved into the gym for our service project.  I found this great idea on Pinterest from {this Little Dresses for Africa blogpost} to make pillowcase dresses for {Little Dresses for Africa} an organization that makes and sends these pillowcase dresses to little girls in Africa and other countries all over the world who have never had a dress.  Thier mission is to give these little girls some self esteem.  I loved the idea of making things for some fellow sisters in need, and I thought there would probably be many sisters in our ward who had extra fabric they could donate to make these dresses. 
I was right!  We had more fabric than we could use!  Maybe we'll have to do it again sometime.  The {Little Dresses for Africa website} has a lot of information on how to make the dresses and how to determine sizes and package them up, etc.  So, we had a cutting station, where sisters determined what size the dresses could be accourding to the size of the fabric or pillowcase donated.  Then we had an ironing station with tons of irons where the sisters prepared the pieces for sewing. 
And then we had a sewing station where ladies who had brought sewing machines stitched away and mad as many dresses as we could!  I called them my little sweatshop because they were working so hard. 
A lot of the dresses ended up being really cute! 
We strung them all up at the end just so we could see how many we had made. 
I loved how colorful it was!  So many fun fabrics made so many fun dresses! 
It was kind of slow going at first as the sisters got the hang of how to make them, but I was so impressed with how many dresses we were all able to make!  At the end my feet were killing me!  But my heart was happy!
39 Little Dresses for Africa.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lego Birthday Party (on the cheap!)

For about a year before his birthday, even before the Lego movie came out, my son has been telling me he wants a Lego party.  So, with lots of time to prepare, I put this together.
Found this awesome free invitation {here on Pinterest} and I downloaded a free Lego looking font to fill it out in word.  I also changed the top of the invite to say "Everything is Awesome!  Everything is cool when you Party with Me!"  Thank you Lego Movie for such a great caption!  My son helped me make these invitations.  We printed them out, and then cut colored cardstock for the back.  We also cut circles out of cardstock and stuck them on using a 3d foamy sticker so they stood out a little bit.  He loved them!
We used the same technique to make this awesome lego banner.  I just cut construction paper in half and then a ton of circles and stuck them on with foamy stickers.  Then, clothes pinned them to a ribbon using mini clothespins from Walmart.  I love those things!  
Together with my awesome bunting from Target that I use at every party, it made a pretty great backdrop for our food table. 
I created some food stands to give it some height using shoe boxes and some primary colored wrapping paper.  It was just the ticket. 
Our drink was orange juice, which of course I labeled "Lego Juice".  Legos are fun because they're so organized and orderly.  To stick with that idea, I got these square compartment trays from the $ store to display the food. 
Then I made these "Lego Cookies" using graham crackers, colored frosting, and m&ms.  They were cheap and easy and the kids loved them.  Win! 
I decided to serve little finger foods that looked like they'd been chopped off the top of legos and call them "Lego Bits" - thank you Walmart for selling those smily face fruit snacks.  That and the mini marshmallows were perfect.  
Then, I made these "Lego Crackers" using string cheese that I sliced and stuck on with easy cheese.  Cheap, easy, and the kids loved them.  Another win! 
Lastly, we had "Lego Corn" which was popcorn of course.  I made these bags using dollar store colored lunch bags which I cut the top off of and used that to make the circles.  Then, we used the same technique as we used on the invite and banner to stick em on. 
Lastly, I made an icecream cake.  My son doesn't really like cake, so this was perfect!  And if you've never made {this icecream cake} you gotta try it!  There was never anything so easy that seems so impressive when you serve it!  When I frosted it, I just stacked up some oreos on the top and frosted around them to make it look like a lego.  It was a big win!
Couldn't have been happier with the way everything turned out! 
And this guy was pretty pleased himself.
We borrowed these kid sized table and chairs from our church which were perfect for the space we had and the amount of kids we needed to seat!  So, when the kids got there, we had them sit down and color a lego head.
And our first game was pin the lego head on the lego guy.  I found these little stars like the one my son is wearing at a school/teacher store near me and turned them into stickers by putting some double stick tape on the back.  These were given to the winner of each of our games.  And by the end we had a lot of specials running around our house! 
I made these bean bag toss's from boxes that I wrapped in yellow wrapping paper and decorated with construction paper.  We just used a "sword of exacto" (haha) to cut the mouths out.  I made the beanbags out of felt and they, too, got the circle treatment but I glued their circles on with hot glue.  Whoever got the most beanbags in the mouths was the special!
I made this lego toss using poster board and construction paper which I cut and taped together to make different sized circles.  
The kids had 4 legos to toss and whoever got the most points was the special!
Honestly, the kids weren't really into these games.  There were a few who participated in every game, but most of them were just running around playing.  

Our last game was musical chairs which we played to the "Everything is Awesome" song.  Honestly, we could have just done without any of the other games and played this one over and over for the whole party because after the first game when everyone cried when they got out, they LOVED playing this!  And we played it like 10 times until finally they were excited about who got out and cheered for the winners!  It's hard to loose when you're 5.  But, the more they played, the more they loved it! 
Then we all ate. 
Opened gifts. (self made crown there) 
And had cake! 
And before everyone left, they got a goodie bag. 
Which included these little coloring books I made using free lego coloring pages I printed 4 to a sheet, cut them in half so they were 2 to a sheet, and sewed them all together.  I also found this awesome image of the "you are special" quote from the movie that we used as the cover page and a lego "thanks for coming" that we used as the back.  I stuck in a "The Special" star and a box of crayons from the $ store. 
My kid could not have been happier.  And I think everyone had a great time!

If you want word copies or PDF's of any of this stuff, just email me!

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