How to Plan and Implement a Child’s Birthday Party in only TWO DAYS!!

How to Plan and Implement a Child’s Birthday Party in only TWO DAYS!!

What a time we have had the last week or so here! Lately I have been sewing most of the day and into the night until 3am in the morning. Yes I am exhausted. Yes I am having a ball! 🙂

With the volume of orders for my Lilli May designs creations growing by the day, I feel so wondrously fortunate to have so many people wanting my creations for themselves and for their loved ones. With this increase in orders comes the need to increase the time I spend creating. Late at night and weekends are a time when I usually get a lot of creating done however last weekend I knew there would be no time for sewing.  Why I hear you ask? Because our daughter turned TWO and we had her birthday party on Saturday and then a very close friends son’s first birthday on Sunday.

So each night, as my darling Lilli May and my sweet Husbando slept soundly and warm in their beds, I worked away in my Cougar Cave kept company by my iPod on shuffle. With less than 48hours until the party, by Thursday, I just knew I had to stop sewing and focus on our daughters special day. Because at that point I had done NOTHING party related!! And there comes a time when family just must come first! Wouldnt you agree?!

The theme we had chosen for her party was BALLERINA & SUPERBOY!

We did a quick trip up to the shops on Thursday morning (which for us involves a lot of walking and two trains – so as ‘quick’ as that allows) to grab some special icing and a ballerina shape cutter then it was back home to sew all afternoon to get those last items out in the post by 5pm. Once Lilli May went to bed at about 9.45pm on Thursday night I was able to hop online and do the grocery shopping for the party for it to be delivered the next day (Friday).

Starting The Preparations

So then at 10.38pm I finally decided on what I wanted to do with regards to her birthday cake that I was making and began to bake it. I also rolled and cut out the icing decorations that were going to go on the cake.

Cake Cutouts

Then it was time to start creating some of the 8  tutus whilst that was in the oven. Once it was cooked and some of the tutus done, it was into bed at about 3am.

Up at 9.30am and it was time to cook another part of the cake. Then it was out the back to clean down the swings and do the washing whilst the Husbando took Lilli May out for a couple of hours. After a rushed lunch and getting Lilli May settled for her nap it was time to do the housework of tidying up each room and a good vacuum. Then it was time to bake the third part of cake and pack all the shopping away.

My mum and Aunty then arrived and as they went out to grab some takeaway dinner with the Husbando and Lilli May, I got a spray tan done at home. A little treat for mummy 🙂 = it was after all the two-year anniversary of surviving my 43 hours of excruciating labour pain! LOL

After scoffing down some dinner I went and locked myself in the Cougar Cave and created 6 superhero capes and even a pink one for Lilli May!

My mum and Aunt helped me make some chocolate crackles and coconut ice. Then we sat at the table and evenly counted out lollies for the goodie bags…because some kids do count and compare!

My Aunt also made the CUTEST little tea cups from lollies and biscuits! I just love them!

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Then it was back to the Cave to make myself a tutu out of leftover tulle. I went to bed at about 1.30am (early mark!!). Suddenly it started to pour with rain and I lay awake until about 3.30am  tossing and turning thinking about how to change the party plans now that we couldn’t have it outside due to the cold and rain.

It felt like I had only just got to sleep when the alarm went off at 7am. Up we got, had a coffee then rearranged the kitchen so that the party table could now be inside. Nervously I iced the cake and made a tutu for the cake stand.

I was so very happy with the result!

Table 2

Tutu's

From the moment Lilli May woke up the rest of the day just seemed a blur of fun and happiness!

The Birthday Girl is awake!

We all got dressed and then the party began!

Lilli Just Dressed

Checking out her party ptable

How cute do the kids look in their tutus and superhero capes and with their faces painted?!

Group 1

We are SO proud of our little Ruffian and love that we are now in the TERRIFIC TWOs!!!

We are also so proud of how fairly she plays with others too. Such a good girl!!

Blow candles Cubby 3 Guest 1 Lilli Cake eating

The Birthday Cake

Lilli Cake

Lilli May and I also made the best of the rain and enjoyed what it creates by stripping off our tutus and playing in the puddle and mud! By the end of it she was covered in mud from face to feet and had SO much fun….. then a nice hot bubble bath! 🙂

Mud Fun

So there you go! It IS possible to organise and implement a successful toddlers birthday party in less than 48 hours!!

Even though it poured with rain and it meant that we couldn’t have it outside so that we could have the automatic bubble blower game, the playdough table games, the chalk drawing on the path competition, the balloon game or play on the swings and sandpit that we had planned – we still had the best day!!

A special thank you to all our family and friends that shared this special day with us and a huge HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO OUR GORGEOUS LILLI MAY. We love you and are so proud of you!

Keep smiling

Michka

There is ALWAYS time for a swing!

There is ALWAYS time for a swing!

It has been a little while since I have made the time to write a post! It is so surprising how fast this year is really going!

Between enjoying time with our daughter Lilli May and the Husbando there are always lots of Lilli May designs orders to sew! I love the variety and I love how we manage to fit everything in for our little family!

The other day, I needed to go up to the shops to take some photos of a new Lilli May designs item – the LMD Deluxe Shopping Trolley Cover/Clothing Protector. The Husbando was kind enough to drive us up there and amuse Lilli May so that I could quickly take the photos and get it in the mail.

LMD Shopping Car/Trolley Cover

Now the entire time I was taking the photo all I could here was screams and giggles!! The Husbando was playing with Lilli May on the swings behind me.

Photo 2-04-13 5 52 36 PM Photo 2-04-13 5 52 59 PM Photo 2-04-13 5 53 05 PM Photo 2-04-13 5 53 13 PM Photo 2-04-13 5 53 41 PM Lilli Swinging 1

(Lilli May is wearing a LMD Lilli Dress in Vintage Holly Hobbie fabric – details here)

So as with every time we go out to our backyard or up to the shops, she always makes me realise, that no matter how busy and hectic things get –  there is ALWAYS time for a swing!

So I joined her! She did, after all, point and show me where the swing next to her was! 🙂

When was the last time you had a swing?

Keep smiling

Michka

Honouring Your Brothers And Sisters

Honouring Your Brothers And Sisters

Families!

What a hot pot of love, excitement, personalities, joy, sorrow and support they can be.

Now there are SO many topics to discuss when it comes to families. I thought that with the approaching silly season, which usually means we spend extra time with our families and friends, that it would be a good time to talk about a related topic.

Today’s topic is Aunties and Uncles.

Now I know that no two families are the same. We are all raised in different environments with different values and different ways of learning to do things. I respect that. So when I was planning this post, I thought it would also be interesting to see other people’s points of view, so that I had something to compare my upbringing with.

So I gained the input of over 30 people. 🙂

Before I get into it I would just like to say thank you to all of you that assisted me with this and shared with me your point of view. 🙂

So as Lilli May is growing older and now has recognition of people and names and as we now have lots of friends with their own children this topic almost raised itself. What I wanted to know was what others feelings were on who their children called Aunty and/or Uncle.

Now the Merriam-Webster dictionary gives this definition of Aunt: the sister of your father or mother; the wife of your uncle.

This is how I was raised. That my Aunts and Uncles were brothers or sister (or married to them) of my parents. My sister and I called all my parents friends by their first names. With a few select older/senior friends of my parents that we called by Mrs SoandSO and/or Mr SoandSo.

When my sister (my only sibling) gave birth to her first baby…. a beautiful baby girl and named her Bianca…when I got to hold her for the very first time I was BEYOND proud! I was finally and Aunty!!!!! What an honour!!!

I know that when I returned the favour, and had a baby and my sister became an Aunty to my child she was over the moon with pride as well!! For me there was nothing else quite like holding my big sisters little baby and knowing that I was her Aunty Shell!

Now as time passes and more of our friends have children I have noticed a growing trend in people, now calling my husband and I, Aunty or Uncle when referring to us for their kids. Yet we are no relation.

So I asked the following questions:

Do you think it is ok for people with kids to refer to you and get their kids to refer to you as Aunty/Uncle if you are in no way related? Why/why not?
Or do you think that it should be an honour held for the true brothers/sisters (in-laws included) of the parents to be referred to in that way? Why/why not?

So some of the comments I got back when I was conducting this research were as follows:

  • My kids call a few of our friends Aunty and Uncle, their “real” Aunties and Uncles all live far away and they only see them once a year if they’re lucky so I think it’s a good thing.
  • Our kids call our closest friends Aunty and Uncle and I think it’s a lovely respect for those special friends.
  • Several friends kids call me Aunty and I think it’s nice 🙂:) it’s a respect thing and to show closeness also
  • I am known as Aunty to all my friends kids. Love it. I have no kids of my own. I became a proper Aunty 5 months ago. Nothing beats it but I love that my friends want their kids to think of me like family.
  • I grew up interstate from all of my blood Aunts and Uncles. But had quite a few of my parents friends that we called Aunties. And I still call them Aunty now.

And the other point of view

  • I don’t like being called Aunty by anyone but detest it from friend’s kids. Fortunately I only have one friend that makes her kids do it.
  • Hubby comes from a family that call pretty well all adult friends Aunt and Uncle. I find it cheapens the term.
  • My children don’t know some of their Aunty and Uncles due to a family rift so I feel uncomfortable with my children calling them Uncle and Auntie when they have nothing to do with them. I don’t call our close friends Aunty and Uncle for my kids though because they aren’t.
  • I think it should only be used for real Aunties and Uncles
  • I think it should be for true Aunts and Uncles. I don’t like when my niece calls her mums friends Aunty I don’t know why but it REALLY eerks me !!! I grew up only calling my true Aunts and Uncles this and friends of my parents were called mrs whoever and mr whoever.
  • The only time it may cause issues is if you don’t want to be called Aunty or Uncle and someone’s pushing it on you
  • I have friends that refer to me as Uncle/Aunt with their kids and I don’t like it… but they have never even asked me is it ok, they just do it.

So as I found out there are two clear points of view on this topic. 🙂 I guess we all need to follow what feels right for us and our individual families based on what we value and how we were raised.

So after much discussion with the Husbando, and after realising that we were raised on the opposite sides of this topic, we have made a decision for OUR little family.

We want to honour our brothers and sister (and their partners) and have Lilli May refer to only them as Uncle and Aunty. We feel that it is important for us and our little family to use the true meaning of the titles Uncle and Aunty and have this clear for Lilli May and not confuse her. If our friends wish to continue to refer to us as Uncle/Aunty for their children, they can, however we wont be doing the same in return. We understand that they may be doing it as a sign of respect to us and we appreciate that. Thank you we are honoured. We value our close friends and want Lilli May to love and respect them as we do, and we feel that she can do this without adding a title to their name. 🙂 Being good role models is what is important and having loving supportive friends is what matters.

I really enjoyed looking in to this topic and hearing the different points of view and reasons and I hope to look into other interesting family related topics in the future (if you have any suggestions please let me know). We need to respect each others preferences when it comes to family, no matter which side of the topic they sit on.

So, please give me your feedback. What are your preferences with regards to this Uncle/Aunty topic? And if you are having your children call your friends Aunty/Uncle, have you checked with them if it is ok? And why/why isn’t this important to you?

🙂

Keep smiling

Michka

1 Tequila..2 Tequila..3 Tequila…

1 Tequila..2 Tequila..3 Tequila…

What comes next?

I used to go out on a Friday night after work and live this song….

I can’t remember what comes next now though…

Maybe I cant remember it because I am a mum now, and for me, I would prefer to stay with my little Ruffian than go out partying on a Friday night…I am enjoying not waking up hung over on a Saturday that’s for sure!

Oh hang on…thats right! The next bit is FLOOR!!! 😀

Day 5 – Floor

Todays tasks in the 20 Days to Organise & Clean Your Home Challenge is to clean the floors! 🙂

So basically this involved picking up all the items off the floor so that the vacuuming can be done.

Meet Bob. This is our Budgie, full name Silent Bob. He used to live with Jay but Jay died nearly a year ago 😦

Bob lives in our home office, surrounded by my handmade curtains, my old primary school ports and is constantly chirping all day until he is covered up at night. He is a happy little thing and Lilli May adores him. Anyway, more on Bob at another time.

Bob is also a great dropper of feathers. So we use the little vacuum nearly everyday to suck them up.

This is something Lilli May loves to do…so she also did it today for me too.

Whilst she was doing this I moved all the mats off the floor throughout the house and move the furniture, that I could, as well. See this mat after 1 day?!

So THAT’s where the TMNT badge of Dadda’s went?! Under the toy chest.

We went out for morning tea, and when we got back home we vacuumed the rest of the house. Then we had lunch and then whilst Lilli May slept…

…I did this…

Then I sewed the rest of the nap time.

Well that is the first week down of the challenge! I love our newly organised rooms! We will be getting all the ‘repair’ items on my list over the weekend and I also plan to clear out the pantry.

So have a fantastic weekend and enjoy it no matter what you decide to do!

See you next week.

Keep smiling

Michka

Today’s Blog is bought to you by Cold Chisel and Poison!

Today’s Blog is bought to you by Cold Chisel and Poison!

Well today was Day 4 of the 20 Days to Organise & Clean Your Home Challenge.

I can’t believe how fast this week is going!

Time for you to snoop in another part of our home. 🙂 Todays schedule also included a quick trip out this morning for a ‘in home’ consultation (yes laa dee daa) to measure up a new Lilli May designs item. So the before photos were taken before this and we started on the room after breakfast and after we got back home.

Day 4 – Lounge Room

So this is how we started…

So not too bad really.

First things first was to turn on some tunes on MTV Classic channel and then remove the items that don’t belong, take the cushions out to get some sun and pack the toys back in the toy box. Yes our bears wear shoes. Volley’s to be exact.

We decided when Lilli May started walking at 8.5 months (YES you read that right), that we would store away our glass coffee table and not have one. It has been a great idea as not only does it allow us extra space in the lounge room for her to play, it is one less thing for her to climb up and stand on (which she does to anything and everything) and it means that we aren’t tempted to have any hot drinks etc near her. Well I use the term ‘hot’ loosely..as we all know that I love lukewarm tea. 🙂

Now isn’t this little bit of interior decorating TO…..DIE…….FOR!!!

This stunning unique layering of a black scarf and a deep crimson red scarf are the perfect accessory to cover the glass door of an evening if someone is up watching TV so that the light doesn’t shine through into the bedroom (through the office) and you are too busy to take the time out to make the roll-up blind that you have all the parts for that you purchased months ago. Simple, yet very effective. *blushing*

As this door leads to our home office and the front door, I want a blind here and not a curtain, as I want to be able to have the light come through when I need it during the day but need the door closed to keep my little Ruffian out of the office. I will make the blind sometime in the next few weeks. I promise and I will Blog to prove it (gee now it’s out there I better actually do it)!

As Poison was pumping out of the speakers, I dusted and clean all the speaker surfaces….

Dusted and cleaned the bookshelf (which we picked up second-hand last weekend) and the TV, DVD player etc…

Then in my quest for more natural light, I looked at the curtains….

..and I decided to remove them for good and I will replace them with some framing curtains. I love the extra NATURAL light we now have and you can see the lovely window details now as well. Win win.

Bonus: as I took time out to admire the new improved windows, we had a bit of a yell-a-long and dance to Cold Chisel.

Since we have been in this house, it has been winter, so we havent ever opened the window in the lounge room. If we wanted air flow we just opened the glass panelled door and the front door was right there. So I wasnt that surprised to find really grotty windows and lots of spider webs on the outside of them.

So after some spray with bug spray, and clean inside and outside, the windows were much cleaner than the paper towel was. Eeeewwww.

Next was the cabinet. We had only recently packed this so not much to do here except a quick tidy of the draws.

Have you ever played Skip-Bo?!?! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this game! Grew up on it with my sister and mum on a weekend at the kitchen table. FUN!  We preferred this over Uno, what about you??

After all the dusting of the shelves and rearranging of the contents of the draws I replaced our very hi-tech “keep Lilli May out of the draws and cupboards” devices…

…tiny squares of cardboard. Jams them shut and even I struggle to get them open. Cost = zero!

It was great to finally organise the new (used) bookshelf too by putting some more candle holders and happy snaps etc on display….

..including my original Strawberry Shortcake doll from the (shhhh) early eighties when I was 5 that Lilli May loves to play with. Also the orange pumpkin is from the 70’s as was a favourite of my sister and I – its Cinderella’s pumpkin that she travelled to the ball in and has the little mice and all!! Cute hey?! Another fav is this picture of the Husbando and I at the V8’s up in Darwin for my birthday a few years ago. The note is a message he wrote on a post-it for me years ago (he was living in Perth & I in Sydney, and he left this note under my pillow on a day he flew back to Perth from spending a weekend with me) when we first started seeing each other. Awwwwwwww how romantic is he?!

The mat was next to attack…when we bought this, we thought “oh yeah, black would hide dirt etc”…but this mat shows up EVERYTHING and we have to vacuum it a few times a week!

 

Lucky for it that it comes up so nice after it is vacuumed to ensure it is not banished to Gumtree/eBay!

Now, the last thing left to do today was to vacuum the couch.

Before I show you the final pics of the lounge room, I wanted to share two last photos with you. The first was taken on Tuesday afternoon and the second was taken this morning of the same spot. It was almost like Lilli May took a look around the lounge room the other day and thought to herself ‘this room is pretty organised already, she wont be able to fill a whole blog post on this, so I better help her out’.

So she grabbed a biro, from me whilst I was on the phone IN THE SAME ROOM AS HER SITTING ON THE TOY BOX (so yes I only have myself to blame), and decided to decorate the lounge….in 10 seconds flat she did this:

Being the knowledgeable Stepford Wife that I am, I worked my magic…

….and it was gone. I guess I still have a photo of her lovely artwork to keep as a memento. Monkey.

With the kettle on and the incense burning, welcome to our organised and clean (and light and bright) lounge room.

Come on over and have a cuppa and a sing-a-long with us! We do have coffee…but lukewarm/cold tea is my speciality!

See you all tomorrow for the next installment. 🙂

Keep smiling!

Michka

Will I ever drink a full cup of hot tea again?

Will I ever drink a full cup of hot tea again?

My name is Mich and I am a Mum and I love lukewarm and cold tea! I will drink at least one cup like this

EVERY….SINGLE……DAY.

I make a cup of tea with boiling water. I take a sip. I let it sit and go cold. Then I drink it.

At least that is what the outside world sees. To anyone one doing a ‘big brother’ on me, that is what they would see. So one would then assume that if she is having it every day then she must like it!

I have to say that I agree with the saying, ‘dont judge a book by its cover’ !!

Cause in reality, I am not that keen on lukewarm or cold tea. In fact, if I had to be completely honest with myself, I would say I hate it. Yet I seem to drink one at least EVERY single day!!

And just like everyone with a habit that they wished they didn’t have, I try not to do it every day, but it still keeps happening. Even though I keep trying it still seems to occur! I always have good intentions to ‘finish the entire cup, whilst it is still nice and hot, and not get distracted’. I have even tried to not even bother making one till I can see a clear 15 minutes where I will just stop, sit and drink.

I don’t know what it is like for you, but when I sit down to relax, and take 15 minutes out, that is when I seem to think of all the things I need to do (and have the actual motivation to do them), or when I notice things that need to be done. Like pack away toys. Like vacuum the dirty rug. Like respond to those emails. Like get sucked into the online abyss. Then when I finish these things, BAM, the tea is on its way to cold!!

Sometimes I will reheat it in the microwave. Sometimes I then sit down again and get distracted again and it goes cold again.

I cant help but wonder, is it just me that this happens to or does it happen to others? Does this kind of thing only happen to mums? Is it like, once you have kids you wont often-be-able-to-go-to-the-toilet-on-your-own-again nor will you be likely to drink-a-full-cup-of-hot-tea, and nor will-you-be-able-to-wear-white-pants-for-a-full-day-without-getting-little-hand-marks-on-them kinda thing? 

Hmmm. Oh no!! I gotta go. My tea has gone cold AGAIN and I have to go reheat it. 

Keep smiling!

Michka

Taking my creativity outside.

Taking my creativity outside.

As you may well have guessed, I LOVE to use my creative ability. It truly makes me smile on the inside when I can create things.

I enjoy creating anything with anything…be it with fabric or food or arts and crafts. 

We are now well and truly settled in our home and have finally had a chance, and the right weather, to get outside and create! 

So we set about a project that will involve the whole family – a fruit, herb and vegetable garden.

Picking the perfect spot in the backyard is of course the most important step. As this not only determines the size of the patch but also what fruit and veggies you can grow there based on the amount of sun and shelter it has.

So I chose a spot that gets the full sun all day until about 4pm when the sun drops behind our large gum tree. After agreeing on the best size, husbando went about building the frame for us.

As I watched him, I realised it was kinda like how I measure and cut out fabric…measure twice and cut once…and the drop saw is kinda like a very large rotary cutter…but a lot more dangerous. He did a great job and it cost less than $20!

As husbando was responsible for the building, I was responsible for the soil and plant selection. I managed to use my powers of persuasion, that my dad taught me, and got a great deal on a tonne of premium soil delivered. Plus Lilli May was amazed at how the tip truck worked!

I was so happy with what he built, that I even watched him helped him fill it with wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of my soil! 🙂

Then yesterday, with lots of prancing around in a tutu in Bunnings help from Lilli May we picked out the perfect plants for our needs. 

I was so happy to wake up this morning to a gorgeous warm sunny winters day that was just PERFECT for getting out in the garden!

Of course we had to lay in the sun and think about which plants to put where and then the digging and preparation began. It is an important step in the creative process of planting your garden, to ensure the layout of the plants is just right, based on their shape and the height they grow to. After a few VERY relaxing hours in the sun, soaking up the vitamin D, breathing the fresh air and getting our hands dirty, we have our very own fruit, veggie and herb garden!! (We did already have some herbs so it was nice to add to these as well.)

 

 Now it is up to Lilli May and I to tend to the garden and potted plants everyday, shower them with water and love and watch them grow until we can eat them! The plants all look so tiny now. I will show you in a few weeks how they are going. I love that we now have another reason to get outside and enjoy our backyard! I cant wait to eat all the yummy things we have growing…as I know that the food we grow always tastes that little bit better than the stuff you buy at the markets, as it is grown with that extra bit of love. Plus this is a great way to teach Lilli May about the wonders of gardening, the fun that you can have with dirt and how to grow things to eat!

And boy did I love getting down and dirty in the garden! Its true what they say, you can take the girl out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the girl!

Now I think I better go scrub my hands after this outside creation, before I go inside to create something with my fabric!!

Keep smiling

Michka

Is there an echo in here?

Is there an echo in here?

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It only seems like yesterday that I held Lilli May in my arms for the very first time. That was 14 months ago tomorrow! Look how grown up she is in this photo! I never really appreciated it when people would say “wow doesn’t time fly” until we had Lilli May! Now, I can’t believe how fast it is going!

I remember when I was a kid and time seemed to drag. Months seemed to take F O R E V E R until the next school holidays. Weekdays seemed to drag on until it was the weekend and we could spend time at my Nan and Pops farm. Afternoons seemed to feel like a week if I was waiting to see if Mum would tell Dad about the fight I’d had with my sister, cause she had threatened it all afternoon ‘you wait till your father gets home!’. And minutes seemed like eons when I was laying in bed, not tired, knowing my older sister was up watching TV like I wanted to, but because I was younger, my bedtime was earlier.

But not now! I don’t even notice minutes anymore. The microwave is always ‘remind beeping’ me that my cup of reheated tea is still in there as I have forgotten about it! Again! So will have to reheat it. Again! The toast is always cold and hard when I get to it as the minutes fly by so quick that I can’t even get to it when it cooks and pops out!

The speed of time had never been more obvious than in the last couple of weeks….because Lilli May is starting to repeat (or at least try to) everything we say! It’s like she has read the “how to speak English” manual in record time, just like Trinity reads the “how to fly a helicopter” manual in The Matrix. LOL

She is coming out with things now that we don’t even notice that we say. This is what happened when my husband Dan was leaving for work;
Dan to Lilli May: Bye Bye
Lilli: Bye Bye (standard response)
Dan to me: See ya
Lilli: See ya!

We never took any notice that that is what we say to each other all the time and that now she has picked it up! Maybe it’s time we take more TIME and be careful about what we say as we seem to have a very attentive little parrot!

It kinda makes me wonder, what does time feel like for her and how does time feel for others? Is it just me that it is flying for? Or has the world simply sped up?!

Keep smiling
Mich