Friday, August 31, 2012

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Hungry Caterpillar party prep: DIY multicolor crayons

I struggled with what to put in the children's goodie bags.  At first I was going to give them lollipops because that went along with the theme of the book.  But then I remembered that they were already going to get candy after bashing the pinata.  Images of screaming children on candy highs filled my mind, so I went another route:  DIY multicolor crayons.  (It sort of goes with the theme, right?  Colorful crayons.... colorful Eric Carle artwork? Ok...maybe it's a stretch...  Alright, you got me.  I just wanted to try this DIY out and I needed an excuse... )

Anywhoo... here's what I did:

(1)  I found a bunch of old crayons, ripped off their paper covers, and broke them up.
  • Note 1:  My mom actually found these crayons at that means they're at least 20 years old... ehhhh.... I think they're still good)  
  • Note 2:  I had a tough time ripping off the covers.  So hubby and I ended up using a scissor to slice the paper right off.  Be careful!  I sliced my finger. 
  • Note 3:  It was tough breaking crayons.  (Hmm, I sense a theme here.  I should probably go to the gym and work out my arms).  I ended up using my trusty pair of scissors and cutting the crayons up.  You could probably chop the crayons up too.  But I didn't want to get wax on my knives or cutting board.  
(2)  I put the broken crayons into some silicone candy molds.   (I've seen other people using cute ice-cube trays or cupcake trays.)
  • Note 1:  You probably don't want to do this with a beloved tray.  The wax stains the silicone.
  • Note 2:  I placed the silicone molds on top of a baking dish because I was afraid of spilling melted wax.  I spilled wax anyway...but at least it didn't get onto my floor.

(3)  Place the crayons into a 250 degree oven.  Bake for about 10-15 minutes (depending on how big  your crayon chunks are).  Watch them as they bake.  Take them out when the top layer is liquidy.

(4)  Once melted, take the tray out and let your melted wax cool and harden. (Mine took about 15 minutes to solidify.) 
  • Note:  Melted crayons smell bad.  Really bad.  Open a window.  Wear a gas mask.  Do whatever you need to feel ok with this.... I kept reminding myself that crayons are non-toxic....*cough cough*
(5) Once cool, pop those babies out and admire your colorful handiwork.
  • Note:  I placed mine in the  freezer for a bit before popping them out.  Some other blogger said to do that, but I don't think I really had to.
Voila!  An army of rainbow crayons ready to color the world!  Muah ha ha ha.

To see other things that we made for the party, click  here

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Happy Anniversary!

It was our wedding anniversary a couple of days ago.  We've been married for 7 years.  Wowzers.  We celebrated the big day by going out for dinner... without Baby Chuck! (Thanks Tita Tina for being brave enough to watch our little monster!) 

I love my son, but it was really really REALLY nice to eat dinner without him.

Throughout the night we tried our very best to (a) not talk about Baby Chuck and (b) eat slowly.  Since becoming parents our conversations revolve around our son.  Dinner topics include dissecting his moods, sleep habits, bowel movements (tmi?), and skin.  I'm quite embarrassed by the number of times I start statements with"Baby Chuck did this today...."

Our manners have also seriously slid down the tubes.  We shovel a whole ton of food into our mouths as fast as we can.  Forget about savoring the meals.  Napkins?  Hah!  No time to wipe our mouths. Knives?  Nope.  That's a luxury.  We just use forks (or one hand.).   The other hand is always spooning, mushing, wiping or entertaining baby.  Dinner time is battle time.  Those who follow dinner etiquette starve.  Only the impolite survive.

So it should come as no surprise to you that we really appreciated that alone time.  Maybe we can try this whole date night thing again?  (Anybody interested in babysitting?)

Today I spent some time looking through some old wedding stuff.  I found these messages written by our guests 7 years ago.  (Instead of a guestbook we asked guests to write on paper "leaves" which were then hung on twigs.)  I laughed a whole lot when I saw these.  Some of our guests got really creative...  

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Oh the agony!

Recently Baby Chuck's mood has been quite volatile.

One moment he's calm and content:

And the next moment he's moaning to the heavens:

We think his mood swings are teething related.  Poor boy!  This too shall pass, right?  (Just how many teeth do children get, anyway?)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Hungry Caterpillar party prep: DIY Photobooth props

So first we made a Number 1 pinata.  Then we made a Hungry Caterpillar themed bingo board.  Now it's time for photobooth props!

I've never seen a real live photobooth before.  But, I've drooled over so many online that I wanted to try the whole activity out too. (Has anyone out there ever used a photobooth?  I think you just provide guests with some props and a nice background, right?)  Anyhoo... I'm lucky enough that Tito Ric has real photography backdrops that we can use.  I'm just providing the Hungry Caterpillar themed props.  Old cereal boxes and cardboard boxes (stolen from our building's garbage pile- yay garbage) were used to create these colorful props.  I painted them with craft paint "Eric Carle" style.  Here's how a couple turned out:

(Note:  I really wanted to take photos of all the props, but hubby reminded me that I should leave some surprise for the guests.  So, you'll have to wait to see all the props later!)

The mask looks like a bunny... but it's meant to be the hungry caterpillar.
 I can't wait to see the kids and their parents playing around with the props.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Hungry Caterpillar party prep: DIY Caterpillar Bingo

Here's my second completed project:  Hungry Caterpillar Bingo

I figured I would need more than a pinata to keep our young guests entertained.  I loved playing Bingo as a kid, so I created these Hungry Caterpillar themed bingo boards.  I placed different images from Eric Carle's book into each square.  Here are 11 different 4x4 Bingo boards that I created:

(Note:  Once again, I am not ashamed to admit that I am a big time copycat.  I used copied images to create my Hungry Caterpillar invite.  This time I copied quite a few of my Bingo images from Patty's blog.  Thank you Patty!)  

Hungry Caterpillar 4x4 Bingo

Friday, August 24, 2012

The weekend

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

(Thanks Kim for taking this photo.)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Hungry Caterpillar party prep: DIY Number Pinata

I just realized this week that September is right around the corner.  Eek!  Summer is slipping through my fingers.  Nooo!

Baby Chuck's birthday party is almost here.  I have all these marvelous DIY plans dancing in my head, but I have yet to fully complete one.  Fortunately, Kim is super crafty and creative.  I'm mucho thankful that she was able to help out.  

Here's our first birthday party project:  The pinata! Ole!  (Note:  I've never hit a pinata before, but the whole idea seems very fun.  What? You get to hit something with a big stick?  And it's ok?  And it spits out candy?  Sign my kid up!)  After looking through pages and pages of pinatas, I skipped the paper mache route in favor of cardboard (using this awesome set of directions).  I'm not sure how sturdy the structure will be since we used flimsy cereal boxes.  Luckily, only a couple of young kids will attend our party, so I think it'll be ok.  *Crosses fingers*

I'm not going to lie.  It was loads of fun to make, but it took a looooong time.  We could only work at night when Baby Chuck was sleeping.  (Unfortunately, that meant that we were both also exhausted too.)  Having Kim as my slave helper really helped.   If you were to try this project, I recommend that you get yourself a Kim too.

Here are some photos from our efforts:

I added thicker cardboard to reinforce my flimsy ones.

This was all we were able to accomplish the first night.
Note the ice-cream in the background.  We needed to keep our energy up.

We started from the bottom and then slowly worked our way up.

Delirium sets in.

This is all we accomplished the second night.

And then when I work up the next morning , our pinata was magically completed!  Just kidding, we finished it after another night of work.

Now I just have to fill this baby up and then we can see it in action. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

We like to party

During the Summer, our town hosts small Sunday get-togethers in the park.  They serve free food and drinks.  Plus, they hire a dj to play music.  Week after week I kept meaning to go but something always came up.  This past Sunday Kim, Baby Chuck, and I finally joined the festivities.  It was  a lot of fun.  We ate delicious food, people-watched to our heart's content, and even got roped into a little dancing.

Boy oh boy, West New Yorkers sure know how to party!

Love em and leave em from Pink Stripey Socks on Vimeo.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

New York Aquarium Part 2

The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever..  ~ Jacques Yves Cousteau 


Jellyfish from Pink Stripey Socks on Vimeo.

New York Aquarium Part 1

We've been trying to follow the "work hard, play hard" mentality.  Hubby works long hours during the week and we try to cram in a whole bunch of fun during the weekend.  Last Saturday we visited the New York Aquarium. It was amazing.  We felt like we were visiting another world.      


Monday, August 20, 2012

A girl named Kim

Hi everyone!  Sorry that things have been a bit quiet around here.  One of my good friends Kim is visiting
us for a couple of days.  We've been really enjoying having her around.  I'm definitely going to miss her when she leaves tomorrow.   

(Luckily, she's also a bit photo-crazy like me, so I have TONS of photos from her stay.  Here are a couple of my shots.)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Neighborhood faces

Walking outside with Baby Chuck is one of the highlights of my day.  Every time we walk outside we see something different.  I usually don't bring my camera out, but yesterday was an exception.  Here are a couple of photos that I snapped and then edited.  Hope you enjoy them! 


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