Camp Holiday: A Glamping, American Girl, Spa Birthday

I can't believe Holiday will be SEVEN this week and I have yet to post pictures from her 6th birthday last year!!!  Holiday generally announces her birthday themes more than a year in advance. She had started talking about a camping theme and then at some point switched gears to a spa party that HAD to include American Girl dolls. My mind was already going down the path of camping, so together we came up with a more "Glamperrific" Camping/ Spa/ American Girl party known as Camp Holiday! 

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Party invitations! I created all of the invitations and stationary for Holiday's parties. 

Party invitations! I created all of the invitations and stationary for Holiday's parties. 

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The past few years, I've focused our party decor in some key specific areas instead of decorating the whole house! I feel like I get a bigger "wow factor" with condensing all of the decor and budget into a space or two! 

The past few years, I've focused our party decor in some key specific areas instead of decorating the whole house! I feel like I get a bigger "wow factor" with condensing all of the decor and budget into a space or two! 

Here you can see our dining room set up along with the doll table. The buffet on the right is set with cake, cookies and bottled extra bottles of water! 

Here you can see our dining room set up along with the doll table. The buffet on the right is set with cake, cookies and bottled extra bottles of water! 

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At Holiday's request, we served her favorite, Panera, to all of our guests. We took individual dinner orders in advance for each of the girls and their moms! 

At Holiday's request, we served her favorite, Panera, to all of our guests. We took individual dinner orders in advance for each of the girls and their moms! 

As state above, I created all of the stationary and artwork for Holiday's parties. I've found there are lots of blank water bottle templates online that I can easily add my own artwork too. I print on regular paper, cut down and affix to bottles with packing tape! The good, heavy packing tape will save you lots of frustration! 

As state above, I created all of the stationary and artwork for Holiday's parties. I've found there are lots of blank water bottle templates online that I can easily add my own artwork too. I print on regular paper, cut down and affix to bottles with packing tape! The good, heavy packing tape will save you lots of frustration! 

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I definitely employed the "Use what you have" principle into the decor for this party. A mix mash of chairs from our dining room, homeschool room and some metal folding chairs as well. I also pulled from my stash of woodland/ rustic/ fall decor for most of the decor. The wooden arrows seen throughout are from Target's Pillowfort Collection. You'll also see several pieces from Hobby Lobby's camping theme section. The light up lanterns in pink and white, I've picked up through the years (mostly on clearance) from Pottery Barn Kids. 

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Of course we had to have a doll sized table which I configured at the last minute! This is one of our Pottery Barn Kids Activity Tables under here! It has a recessed top with a lip that goes all the way around. So, I actually took a large chalkboard from our homeschool room and put it on top of the rolling table carts to give us a flat top and then covered it with my huge roll of butcher block paper! 

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For the doll "placemats" I cut down some 12x12 card stock. The cups and plates are from our many trips to the American Girl Bistro. The treats and cake down the center are all collected from American Girl through the years. The dolls, of course, all had to have their own goodies bags as well which are sets of custom pajamas to match the ones each girl received at the party as well! Both the girl and doll pajamas were all custom created by Bella Grace Creations

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As always, the cake is from It's a Mary Cake! My dear friend, Mary Holmen always plays such a special role in all of our celebrations with her wonderful creations! 

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Holiday was SO excited about having an outdoor, flashlight scavenger hunt at the party. I've had those little wooden twig pencils in my stash forever and finally had an opportunity to use them! 

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Oriental Trading has an adorable collection of girly camping party supplies. We like to give out a lot of swag at our parties, so these Happy Glamper Backpacks were perfect for our event! 

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This little cardboard sign is also from Oriental Trading! 

After dinner, we moved upstairs to Holiday's Playroom which we converted into The Wilderness Spa! 

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These Animalz face masks from Target were adorable and a huge hit! You'll see the girls wearing these cute bow headbands (the kind you use to keep your hair out of your face which you're washing it or doing your makeup). The quality on these specific ones is AMAZING! I ordered a few from another seller and they weren't as nice. I still use mine daily!  You can order them HERE! 

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The spa foot baths I found on clearance last year at PBTeen

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On the back wall, you can see the Our Generation Doll Spa Accessory Kits that the girls each got to take home as well... like I said... I love giving swag! 

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We used one of our Pottery Barn Kids Activity Tables to set up the doll spa. It was a HUGE hit and this was a very busy play area throughout the evening. Holiday received the AG doll spa and hair playsets and accessories as her big gift from us for her birthday! 

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My mom, sisters, and friends all jumped in to help with manicures, crafts and everything else throughout the night! With the parties I throw, it truly does take a village! (Thank you Mimi, Aunt Jenn, Aunt Rebekah, Erin, Rebecca, Brenda and Nicole!) 

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My sweet niece Emme showing off her pretty blue and gold nails! 

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After our spa time, we all headed downstairs for arts and crafts! I found a great deal last year on these Pillow Plush Craft Kits and the girls all made either a fox or hedgehog pillow to take home. I also planned for them to make washi tape journals, but alas, we ran out of time! 

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All the girls showing off their adorable pajamas, ready to head out on their scavenger hunt with their pink flashlights! 

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Sweet September Style

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It's hard to believe the "BER" months are officially here...well in a few hours! I want to try something new on the blog and show you what adorable kid clothes I'm building Holiday's seasonal wardrobe with.  

This time of year, I'm always obsessed with everything apples, so I was over the moon when I saw Matilda Jane Clothing Company's past two releases.  Since I know so many of my readers love Matilda Jane as much as I do, I wanted to show you how I'm styling some of our current pieces. 

And BEST OF ALL, tomorrow  is the 1st- so that means NEW pieces are loading to the site early tomorrow morning! I have a party open, so if you need a show to order from- I'm you girl!  

Check out all the sneaks for tomorrow's release at the end of this post!  

 

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Matilda Jane Class President Lap Dress and MJ One Night Only Socks. Shoes are Livie and Luca Navy Blue Astrids (Note: this is a new style of shoe for L&L and running a full size small); Headband Bow is from One Stop Bow Shop 

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In this photo, Holiday is wearing the Matilda Jane Put on a Show Cookie Dress and Show Me Stocks. Again, we paired this with the Livie and Luca Navy Blue Astirds. We topped this with the Mini Boden Cable Cardigan in the Soft Blossom Pink Color. These Mini Boden cardigans are a fall/winter/early spring staple for us! 

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In this photo, Holiday is wearing the Matilda Jane Patio Party Party Ellie Top from the summer release (still available), we paired this with orange polka dot leggings we already had from RicRac and Ruffles. Boots are the 3 Layer Fringe Boot from Minnetonka and the Cable Cardigan is past season Mini Boden 

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Showing the same outfit without the sweater, headband is from One Stop Bow Shop. I love the fall colors on the skirt of this Ellie top-- it so reminds me of pumpkin patch fun! 

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Here's another styling option for the Put on a Show Cookie Dress without the sweater. Holiday is wearing white knee high socks and the Livie and Luca Navy Blue Astirds. Bow is from One Stop Bow Shop 

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Here, she's wearing the Matilda Jane Around the Globe Dress. I LOVE this dress. You need to see the closeups of the apple details on the ruffle sleeves and bottom of the skirt. We paired this with the 3 Layer Minnetonka Fringe Boots. Headband bow is from Hanna Andersson 

Those Apples!!! <3 

Those Apples!!! <3 

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In this picture, Holiday is wearing last year's Matilda Jane Dress that was released from the Vault- the Good Vibes Lap Dress. This dress is no longer on their website, but frequently pops up on eBay and on the Matilda Jane Buy/Sell/Trade pages on Facebook. We paired this with the current season One Night Only Socks as well as current season Livie and Luca Tootles (new styled) in Copper. These shoes are AH-mazing! (We also have them in Mustard and they are beautiful!) 

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In this photo, Holiday is wearing the Matilda Jane Girls Cameo Flutter. This top is ADORABLE in real life!  It's been on a special BOGO promotion right now-- so you can get a sister set or share one with a friend! She is wearing this top with the Matilda Jane Bright Lights Big Ruffles. Shoes are Livie and Luca Aurora Ballet Flat in the Ruby color, Headband Bow by Hanna Andersson 

I love, love, LOVE the details on this top! 

I love, love, LOVE the details on this top! 

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This is the Matilda Jane Somethings' Cooking Apron Dress! If you're familiar with the apron style, the apron buttons to the front of the dress and ties around the back. You have the option to wear it with or without the apron. It is darling both ways! In this photo, we paired it with the Matilda Jane Library Book Big Ruffles (match almost this entire current collection) and Native Jeffersons in Galaxy Pink! Headband bow is by One Stop Bow Shop. 

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Here you can see the dress again WITHOUT the apron! This time we paired it with the Show Me Socks and the Livie and Luca Astrids in navy blue. Headband bow by One Stop Bow Shop 

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Another shot of this with the apron!  How cute is this?! Best of all-- the apron can be worn as a regular half apron too! 

 

TOMORROW IS THE DAY!!! THE FOLLOWING PICS ARE ALL SNEAK PEAKS OF WHAT IS COMING IN THE MORNING! The details are all back up at the top of this post for how to order! 

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Baby's First Easter

As promised, in addition to my annual Easter Basket post for kids, I wanted to include a separate list for Baby's FIRST Easter!  Darling, special little things to commemorate your little one's very first bunny celebration!  Hope you love it all as much as I do! 

All of the pictures and captions are shopping links which will open in a separate screen-- happy shopping! 

The Beaufort Bonnet Company will make you want another baby to shop for. All super high-end, high quality items. These classic bonnets are sure to make you swoon and sure to keep sun off baby's little head. 

This classic set of four Peter Rabbit Tales are SURE to delight both you and your little one.  It was important to Beatrix Potter that the books be sized for little hands (also a measure to keep the costs down and affordable for all children). While we have the complete volume of Beatrix Potter Tales, Holiday still prefers to read the smaller ones whenever possible!  Of course these little books include all of Beatrix Potter's original, gorgeous illustrations! 

Jellycat is the most favorite brand of stuffed animals at our house. They are SO soft and cuddly. The ones featured here (and most of what we own) are the size medium- for the bunny it's 12 inches and the perfect size for snuggles. Make bunny extra special by having the ear embroidered with your little one's name! 

Also available from Jellycat are these seriously adorable Baby Soother Security Blankets!  The link will take you to a selection of different animals and colors! 

I've always been a big fan of classic, wooden toys for little ones and Haba makes some of the best! Here's an article on why many parents prefer wooden toys for their children

Haba Little Sparrow Clutching Toy 

Haba Little Sparrow Clutching Toy 

Teething Egg is a new baby teething toy on the market this year! It's the perfect size and weight for little hands and mouth. Designed by a mom who worked with top-notch engineers. 

Kamani Designs- aka THE WORLD'S BEST BIB-- SERIOIUSLY!!!!  These bibs are reversible and feature snaps at the bottom.  It will catch all the extra food that misses baby mouth.  When you're ready to clean up-- simply unsnap and wipe right into the sink!  These bibs are easily wiped down and can also be thrown into the washer! Made out of laminated cotton and NOT oilcloth which can be toxic. 

Admittedly, I have loved Peter Rabbit forever, so I may have been a little biased when Holiday was in puree stage, but these Peter Rabbit Organics were our very favorite!  She ate these until she was 3.5!!! 

If you love Peter Rabbit, you NEED this baby board book filled with lots of fun things to touch and see! 

These Skip Hop Stacking Bird Bath Toys are also scoops so babies and toddlers can scoop and play in the water.  These adorable spring-time colors are sure to be a hit in your little one's Easter basket! 

Ahhhh!  These Pottery Barn Kids Baby Bunny Slippers are PERFECTION! Super soft and cozy, fit up to 12 months.  More animals/colors available via the links above! 

If you really want something special to commemorate baby's first Easter, look no further than this plush sherpa bunny rocker from Pottery Barn Kids!  We've had two of the rockers from PBK and they are superb in quality and engineering!

Top Picks for Easter Baskets 2017

I feel like I'm getting this list out later than ever this year, but hopefully it will be worth the wait! My husband and I just got back from a little trip celebrating our wedding anniversary.  On our last day, I swung by the gift shop to bring home a gift for Holiday and discovered Bling2O swim goggles.  Can I just tell you that the online pictures don't even do them justice?! They are SOOOO ADORABLE in person and the boys' designs are every bit as cute as the girls.  Summer is right around the corner and these are definitely my top pick for both boys and girl this year! 

ALL of the pictures are links that will open in separate windows.  If you hover over each picture, you'll also see the item name which is also a link for the item.

Disclaimer:  I'm not sure if it's obvious how many hours go into creating my Easter and Christmas blog posts-- not to mention, always keeping my eyes out for the newest and greatest items to share with you all!  I have chosen not to put advertising on my blog for the time being.  However, for Amazon items, I do have an Amazon associates link.  Meaning if you follow my links to the items and purchase, I do get a very small percentage of your sale (most items I earn must 3%) so I do appreciate you purchasing through the links if you decide to purchase based on my blog! Thank you! 

BLING2O SWIM GOGGLES

There are SO many adorable styles, I didn't think you could really see the details on this collage picture!

 

BLING2O Girls Styles

BLING2O BOYS STYLES 

CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT ALL THE BOYS STYLES! 

CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT ALL THE BOYS STYLES! 

Bling2o Gooey Gator Swim (2 color options via link)

Bling2o Gooey Gator Swim (2 color options via link)

Bling2o Boys Super Hero 

Bling2o Boys Super Hero 

Bling2O also has a few other fun swim accessories that all rate super well! Grab some goggles, maybe one of these accessories, add in a super fun beach towel (Pottery Barn kids is my fave) and a pair of flip flops (Hanna Andersson or Havianas) and you have a fantastic Easter basket! 

The Bling Board Kick boards each contain a diving toy ball that is contained in the kick board! 

Shark Bling Board

Cupcake Bling Board

Candy Jar Snorkel Pink

Candy Jar Snorkel Brights

Hope y'all love these goggles as much as I do.  I bought Holiday the mermaid ones to give right away and a pair of the heart ones are stashed away for her Easter basket.  They were all SOOO cute, I just couldn't decide!!!! 

Chunkies and Kwik Stix Paint Sticks

Before Christmas, I was raving about the Lil' Chunkies Paint Sticks-- they are AMAZING!!!  We've continued to use them (Pssst- THEY'RE EVEN AWESOME FOR DECORATING EASTER EGGS!) Holiday also wanted some that were a little finer/ thinner, so I also purchased another brand, Kwik Stix that are essentially the same product, but make thinner/finer lines and kids are able to use a traditional pencil grip with them.  If you didn't buy them for Christmas, you will totally want them for Easter.  It's mess free painting for your littles of artists through age 8 will really enjoy these! (See below for perfect paint paper pads to go with these!) 

CLICK HERE FOR CHUNKIES PAINT STICKS! 

CLICK HERE FOR CHUNKIES PAINT STICKS! 

 Be sure to pick up a paint pad or heavyweight sketch paper for all their paintings.  I love the Kid Made Modern ones from Target, they run just about $5. Even our local grocery store had some other really cute paint pads for $2. 

KID MADE MODERN: HEAVY WEIGHT PAD CLICK HERE

KID MADE MODERN: LIGHT WEIGHT PAD CLICK HERE 

 

LIGHT STAX 

I discovered Light Stax right before Christmas this past year and they are SO much fun! They are more like the size of a Lego Duplo square brick, but they light up!  You just have to have them connected to a light up base.  Even older kids enjoy creating with the Light Stax. You can use the power base to connect to a USB and use it as a night light.  They really are AMAZING! 

Here's a YouTube video on Light Stax-- the possibilities are endless! 

CLICK HERE TO GO TO AMAZON LIGHT STAX

CLICK HERE TO GO TO AMAZON LIGHT STAX

Holiday used her Light Stax to make rainbows for her leprechaun trap on St. Patrick's Day! 

Holiday used her Light Stax to make rainbows for her leprechaun trap on St. Patrick's Day! 

 

 

FANDEX FAMILY FIELD GUIDES  

If you have kiddos who love absorbing and obsessing over certain topics, you might love the Fandex Family Field Guides as much as we do.  There are Fandex Field Guides for SO many topics from Dinosaurs and Presidents to Shakespeare, DC Comics Wildflowers and SO much more! They are really age appropriate for a large variety of ages.  I would say any child who is a fluent reader through adult- even younger children will enjoy the pictures and having the cards read to them. There is such a wealth of engaging information on each card, little readers are just as engaged as an adult.  CLICK HERE TO SEE ALL THE FANDEX OPTIONS

Fandex PRESIDENTS 

Fandex PRESIDENTS 

FANDEX Family Field Guide Presidents

FANDEX Family Field Guide Dinosaurs

FANDEX Family Field Guide 50 States

FANDEX Family Field Guide Butterflies

FANDEX Family Field Guide DC Comics and Villains

FANDEX Family Field Guide Star Wars

PEACEABLE KINGDOM STICKER FUN SETS 

I've used and blogged about many Peaceable Kingdom brand items in the past and have always loved their quality and creativity.  A few months ago I stumbled upon the Sticker Fun sets and ordered some for air travel we had coming up.  They were a HUGE hit!  The stickers are heavyweight- more like vinyl clings you'd put on a window and each set comes with several scenes to decorate.  The stickers are super easy to remove and reuse countless times!  There are SO many fun themes to choose from if you're doing a theme basket! 

She's showing the Mermaid set, but I snapped pics of the front and back of the unicorn set we also have.  They are SUPER fun! 

She's showing the Mermaid set, but I snapped pics of the front and back of the unicorn set we also have.  They are SUPER fun! 

At the Zoo

Cars and Trucks 

At the Airport

Space Adventures

Mermaid

Butterfly

Magical Unicorns

The Princess Ball

Fire Station

Pirates

Under Construction

Train Time

Horses

Ocean Animals

United States

Dinosaurs 

PICK A PUZZLE! 

Puzzles are a main attraction at our house. I've bought a lot of them and I have three top favorite brands for kids puzzles: Ravensburger, Crocodile Creek and Mudpuppy.  Puzzles are awesome Easter basket gifts because you can find them to match pretty much ANY theme and they are appropriate for all age levels when you scale by the number of pieces.  Holiday is 6 now and will sit and do anything from a 24 pc puzzle to a 200pc.  Anything beyond 200 pieces tends to lose her attention a little.  For 100 pieces and under, she will sit and put them together on her own pretty quickly.  For 200 pieces, she'll tend to start it in the morning, move on to other things and then come back and finish.  Puzzles are great STEM builders and really good for developing problem solving skills!  

Ravensburger:  While the other two brands I mentioned are purely for kids, Ravensburger makes quality puzzles from toddler to adults-- so the possibilities for themes and subjects are endless.  Ravensburger also makes a lot of Disney and other character themed puzzles-- so search for whatever you're looking for.  They are top quality, nice heavy pieces!  

CLICK HERE TO SHOP ALL RAVENSBURGER PUZZLES 

CLICK HERE TO SHOP ALL RAVENSBURGER PUZZLES 

Construction Crowd 60pc puzzle

Horse Dreams Glitter 100pc puzzle

Space puzzle 100pc puzzle

Mermaids and Dolphins Glitter 100pc puzzle

Beautiful Ocean 100pc puzzle

Thomas the Train Counting Trains 21pc puzzle

Pirate Battle 100pc puzzle

Land of the Giants (Dinosaur) 100 pc puzzle

Railway Station 60pc puzzle

Crocodile Creek: This is a super fun brand of kid puzzles.  All nice, heavy puzzle pieces.  The smaller pieced puzzles are all XL size and easy for little fingers. The puzzles in tubes are a puzzle PLUS a poster! They also have a series of truck puzzles where the box looks like a vehicle (pictured center in the collage below).

CLICK HERE TO SHOP ALL CROCODILE CREEK PUZZLES 

CLICK HERE TO SHOP ALL CROCODILE CREEK PUZZLES 

Unicorn Forest 36pc puzzle

Pirates Puzzle & Poster 200pc 

Land of Dinosaurs 24pc puzzle

Ocean Puzzle & Poster 200pc  

Recycling Truck 48pc puzzle

Super Heros 72pc puzzle

Fire Truck 12pc puzzle

Cinderella 72pc puzzle

Mermaids 72pc puzzle

Mudpuppy: Mudpuppy makes all kinds of wonderful items for children.  Again, their puzzle pieces are nice and heavy quality.  For your littlest ones, their puzzles in a pouch are SO cute and a nice, easy 12 pieces. There are lots more pouch puzzles than I have pictured below, but you can shop all pouch puzzles here. Also below are some of their Puzzle Stick Puzzles which you can see all here. Each set contains SIX 8pc stick puzzles! 

Forest Friends Jumbo Puzzle, 25pc

Princess Castle Pouch Puzzle, 12pc

Dinosaurs Jumbo Puzzle, 25pc

Construction Jumbo Puzzle, 25pc

On the Road 42pc Puzzle

Geometric Animals Puzzle Sticks Set

To the Rescue Jumbo Puzzle, 25pc

Under the Sea Pouch Puzzle, 12pc

Animals of the World Jumbo Puzzle, 25pc

IF YOU STILL NEED A THEME... 

If you really love themed baskets as much as I do-- there are SO many options here to mix these different products for a beautiful themed basket! 

Dinosaurs, Super Heros, Construction, Vehicles, Princess, Mermaids, Sea/Ocean, Outer Space and so many more! 

If you still need more ideas, there are SO many wonderful things on previous years' posts.  Last year was all broken down into awesome themes! 

THE WELL STYLED CHILD BUNNY BASKET BONANZA 2016

THE WELL STYLED CHILD BUNNY BASKET BONANZA 2014

THE WELL STYLED CHILD BUNNY BASKET BONANZA 2013