Gingerbread House Party

Photography by:
Amber Partish of Parrish Studios
http://www.parrish-studios.com

Gingerbread sweets table

 

A couple years ago, we hosted a gingerbread house party for my children, their cousins, and their friends. And I am just now getting around to blogging it!!

We setup our decorating table with mini Gingerbread houses filled with candy of all sorts and kinds. Each place setting had a printout of our shop’s gingerbread house – that acted as a placemat/charger for the adorable gingerbread plates from Oriental Trading Company. Beside each setting we placed cute gable boxes – also from Oriental Trading Company. We scattered some bottle brush trees that we had found at our local Dollar General Store. We placed a cute centerpiece of a girl and boy gingerbread plush figures along with gingerbread rolling pins and measuring cups. I had these in my inventory from several years ago from Oriental Trading Company.

 

We placed a sweets table on one side of the decorating table for the kids to have goodies while they decorated their houses.

 

Gingerbread party overall

 

For the backer for our sweets table, I re-purposed an old cardboard box by applying “frosted” (glittered) shingles made from tan paper and trimmed to fit as shingles on the roof. I then added a trimmed piece of poster board that was made to look like sugar snow covering on the roof, and I added some of our shop’s larger gumdrop graphics to complete the roof look. I printed out a window graphic for the top portion of the house and a door graphic for the bottom. I then re-purposed some old ball pit balls and cut them in half and hot glue them on all over the backer to look like candy pieces for the house. At the bottom, I hot glued on different peppermint, candy, lollipop, and candy cane graphics I had made. I also attached some candy cane ornaments from the Dollar Tree, and I made some other peppermint pieces by wrapping some of my handmade peppermint paper fans in cellophane to look like wrapped candies. And I stuck a lollipop stick onto a few of my lollipop graphics and put a little bow on the bottom of the graphic to look like lollipop candies.

 

Gingerbread sweets table2

 

The table itself held decorations of wooden peppermint candlestick decorations and some glittered tree mini standee decorations, both from Oriental Trading. There was also a Gingerbread wire tiered platter that I put into my serving inventory several years ago – from Oriental Trading.

 

Gingerbread table close up2

 

On our sweets table, we served Little Debbie snack trees that we placed on decorative Christmas straws to make “pops” out of them.

 

 

We also dipped mint Oreos and sprinkled them with crushed soft peppermints and placed those on lollipop sticks.

 

Gingerbread Peppermint Oreos

 

We had dipped rice Krispy treats that we embellished with some gingerbread icing decorations from Michaels and placed straws in those as well, to make pops out of them.

 

 

Atop the Krispy straws, we placed some of our gingerbread house graphic toppers from our shop.

 

Gingerbread house toppers

 

Our table also served spice cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, wrapped and topped with our shop’s gingerbread man wraps and face toppers. We also decorated a few with some handmade paper fans from our shops Christmas pattern papers and embellished them with some of our gingerbread man graphics. We also topped a few with another set of gingerbread matching themed graphic toppers from our shop.

 

 

Our ruffled white background was decorated with a few of our larger handmade paper fans and gingerbread men graphics as well. And the front of the sweets table was draped with some of our Christmas paper circles and Gingerbread Man face circles as a mini banner.

 

 

Many of our food items were tagged with our gingerbread themed food labels.
Off to the side of our decorating table, we had another ruffled background that acted as a separator for our party room. On that separator, we placed a Peppermint “Merry Christmas” banner that is also from our shop’s Gingerbread collection.

 

Gingerbread Dipped Krispies

And gracing the other side of the decorating table was our Hot Cocoa Bar.

 

Hot cocoa Bar front view

 

We set up our toppings portion of the bar area atop an old chest. We placed a chalk board as the backer and strung our shop’s “Baby It’s Cold Outside” mini pennant banner across it.

 

Baby Its cold outside banner

 

 

We then placed all our Hot Cocoa fixings across the chest: Nestle’s and International Delight’s holiday flavored creamers, and then several toppings in mini containers from the Dollar Tree – peppermints, peppermint sticks, chocolate chips, marshmallows, sea salt, marshmallow bits. We also placed bottles of caramel syrup, chocolate syrup, whipped cream, larger marshmallows, and gingerbread marshmallows. And there were shakers of cinnamon and nutmeg. We placed a few of our handmade peppermint paper fans around the setting.

 

Hot Cocoa toppings bar

Off to the right of the toppings bar, we had our coffee and cocoa center.

 

Hot Cocoa mix table

 

Here we placed our Keurig atop a sled for ease of hot water dispensing. We also had a container of dark hot cocoa and milk hot cocoa.

 

 

We also filled a glass bowl with coffees and cider pods for those who wanted something hot but a little different than cocoa. We placed a cup full of decorative Christmas straws for “stir sticks”.

 

Hot cocoa stir sticks

 

And we also placed a glittered tree decoration from Oriental Trading. And the front of the table was draped with our shop’s gingerbread themed pennants.

 

 

We tied some of our shop’s “Cup of Good Cheer” tags to our small foam cups. We received this idea from Lisa Frank Parties – an idea she had shared a few years ago on Pinterest.

 

Cup of good cheer tags

 

Many of our items on the hot cocoa and coffee center, plus the hot cocoa toppings bar, had our shop’s peppermint food labels displayed as well.

 

Hot Cocoa mix2

 

And finally, off to the left side of the Hot Cocoa toppings bar, we had a milk beverage cart. Here we served cold beverages of plain and chocolate milk.

 

Gingerbread milk dispensers

 

 

We had our plastic beverage bottles wrapped with our shop’s gingerbread bottle wraps and the straws gracing the bottles were topped with our gingerbread mean bow tie toppers.

 

 

We placed some peppermint tall glasses on the bottom of the cart for display purposes. These glasses were from Oriental Trading from last season.

 

Gingerbead milk cart

 

Because of the time constraints of the party, we went with using graham crackers to build our faux gingerbread houses. The kids had a wonderful time and we look forward to hosting another decorating party again – it was so much fun!

 

 

Many of the paper good items are from our shop and are available as digital downloads for you to purchase and print and craft at home. We do offer physical tangible products as well, for additional pricing.

Most of the additional décor was found either a few years ago (and placed in inventory) or recently from Oriental Trading Company. A few of the containers were purchased from Dollar Tree. And the bottle brush trees were from Dollar General.

The sweets were either all store-bought treats, such as Little Debbies, or they were homemade by Water Walker Event (we do not offer treat making services). The backdrop was handmade by Water Walker Events, along with the paper fans and all the printables – barring the gable boxes and plates – which were from Oriental Trading. The hot cocoa mixes were homemade mixes we made in larger batches.

Thanks for reading!
Shawna
Water Walker Events

 

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Day of the Dead – Dia de los Muertos – Masks

Day of the Dead – Dia de los Muertos – Masks

Today in our homeschool, we are going to introduce some of the aspects of Dia de los Muertos – Day of the Dead.  Then we will do a couple projects.  One of our projects will be to make or color our own Dia de los Muertos masks (instead of painting our faces).  I thought I would go ahead and share the page before I do my recap that way any of you who would like to use the printable for this year, could also take part in our fun craft.

I explained to my children that Dia de los Muertos is not the same or affiliated with Halloween.  And that our culture we live in has taken the two and combined them.  As I read in a few of the links, Halloween is about self:  decorating yourself, getting yourself candy, partying for yourself.  Dia de los Muertos is about giving to those who have gone on – to those outside yourself.  It is about remembering.  The skull – when affiliated with Halloween – is thought of as scary and morbid.  The skull – when affiliated with Dia de los Muertos – is thought of as a reminder, not of something morbid, but of those who were loved and have gone on.  It is a symbol of love and happiness of those past.

When I looked up why those who celebrate wear masks or paint their faces, I got a few different answers.  Some said they wear the masks to poke fun at death.  Some said they wear them in honor of those (representative) who have gone on before them.  Some say they wear them as a reminder that we are all the same and we all will face the same fate…death.  Either way, the masks we are presenting here are not given or taken lightly.  These are simply ways of allowing children to experience or understand another culture.  I will explain to my children that this is not like Halloween makeup, but that this is part of ceremony and culture and deeply ingrained in the beliefs of those who celebrate their lost loved ones.  This is not shared to be disrespectful, but as a means for those who would like to learn more about other cultures.

Here are a few links that tell about why (and how) people paint the skulls on their faces and also why the skulls are used and their meanings:

https://crueldazeofsummer.wordpress.com/2013/08/12/sugar-skulls-status-in-popular-culture-what-is-their-meaning-and-where-do-they-originate-from/

https://blog.redbubble.com/2014/10/day-of-the-dead-sugar-skull-art/

https://holidappy.com/holidays/Meaning-Dia-de-los-Muertos-Face-Painting

https://holidappy.com/holidays/Meaning-Dia-de-los-Muertos-Face-Painting

http://www.newsweek.com/day-dead-dia-de-los-muertos-sugar-skulls-696811

 

I have included a colored mask version (for those who only want a printed mask), a black and white version with designs for coloring, and a blank canvas one for those who wish to add their own designs and colors.  I hope you enjoy!

 

Sugar Skull Colored mask

Sugar Skull color your own mask with designs

Sugar skull color your own designs

Shark Week 2017 – Day 4

Shark Week 2017 – Day 4

We took an easier day and didn’t do much on Thursday of Shark Week 2017.

I worked on and finished up some artwork for some free games/printables to share today (Fri). And the kids went swimming.

But other than that we didn’t do anything other than make and munch on Shark Bark.

We took our inspiration from this bark from Sandy Toes and Popsicles

We gathered up these supplies for our version:

Oreos (crumbled)

Light blue and dark blue candy melts

Vanilla Almond bark

Nerds

Sprinkles

Red Swedish fish

Gummy sharks

 

First we crumbled up about 15 Oreos in the bottom of a foil covered 9 x 13 dish.  And we sprinkled in a handful of Nerd candies for color and crunch.

 

We then melted up our 3 colored of melts and almond bark and dropped it by the spoonful all over the dish.

We then swirled the melts together to look like water.

  

Then we added different sprinkles.

Next we added gummy sharks and Swedish fish to the top.


  

Once we finished adding the toppings, we popped the dish in the freezer for about a half hour.

After freezing the bark for a half hour, we pulled the foiled piece out and busted and broke the bark up into hand held pieces.

Our Finished Bark!

Shark Roll Bingo

As I was searching Shark games for our Shark Week activities, I came across this fabulous Shark roll game.  I LOVED the idea.  But I wanted to revamp it so that we could make it into a Bingo type game for several players.  So I used my custom Shark bite design and made it the same way only I made 12 different Shark cards with a different mix up of numbers.  The idea is the same in that each player takes a turn rolling, counting, but then ALL the players cover what is rolled on that roll.  But they only cover it up once (meaning if an added two is rolled – you only cover up one #2 and leave the other for another roll).  The dice are then passed to the next player who rolls, all cover and so on!  It is a great way to practice counting but still be able to play with multiple players.  I also provided a single player roll game (1st card in the file).  So page #1 is for a single player and all the following pages are for multiple (up to 12) players.

Just print out all the 12 Bingo Player cards on white cardstock (pages 2-13 in the document).  Then trim out all the teeth cover “chips”.  Pick a player to roll first then go clockwise taking turns rolling.  If you get the number rolled, cover it with a tooth chip.  Play until one player has cover all their teeth and shout out BINGO!

 

  

I hope you enjoy!  And if you are looking for a roll over game with several different counting versions, go check out Playdough to Plato’s Roll and Cover Game!  It is so cute!

 

Shark Teeth Bingo Game

 

Please remember my copyright and usage clause.  You may use any of my free printables for personal use only.  You may not resale them in any way, sort or fashion – whether digital or physical.  You may also not use any piece or portion of the art in any new way or part of any other digital design or collaboration.  The art may not be tampered with and must stay in it’s original form.  Please also remember to credit and refer others back to us when you use these pieces – especially when posting online or on any social media.  We appreciate your respecting our policies on this.  Thank you!

Interesting Sharks – Fun tidbits & Memory Game – Shark Week 2017

I collaborated with the local artist The Madcat_her (@themadcat_her on Instagram) to bring you this fun Shark Memory game with fun tidbits of information.

 

**** DISCLAIMER****

We gathered the information for these cards from Wikipedia.  We do not claim all of these pieces as facts.  We only gathered this information in this way.  Please be polite if you find a discrepancy and feel free to email me any new/correct information (with a link to source).  I would be glad to update the cards at my convenience.  I will, however, not tolerate any rudeness or ill manners.  Do not email me with rude comments.  This was just a quick – for fun type game.  I am completely open to correcting anything.  But as stated, I did not come up with this information and I used the best source I could for this quick type game.  I will accept any nicely handled corrections.  Thank you!

 

  

 

Shark Card Game

Attached you will find a pdf of the Shark cards.  Just print the file once as I have already duplicated the cards in the file.  I would print them on heavy white card stock or on regular paper and glue to another dark or heavy card stock or chipboard piece.

Shark matching cards

 

Please remember my copyright and usage clause.  You may use any of my free printables for personal use only.  You may not resale them in any way, sort or fashion – whether digital or physical.  You may also not use any piece or portion of the art in any new way or part of any other digital design or collaboration.  The art may not be tampered with and must stay in it’s original form.  Please also remember to credit and refer others back to us when you use these pieces – especially when posting online or on any social media.  We appreciate your respecting our policies on this.  Thank you!

Shark Week 2017 – Day 3

Shark Week 2017 – Day 3

 

Shark word find

We started our day pretty lax.  We didn’t do any shark activities until early afternoon…. at the eye doctor.  Big sister had an eye appointment so the younger two took along their shark word finds from Jinxy Kids to keep them busy.

Later in the day, we made our shark clothespin craft.  We went off the idea here from Kix Cereal.  But I have provided you with art you can print and cut yourself, if you do not have the supplies they recommend.  You will still follow the same directions – just use this artwork.

Shark Clothespin art

 

After we made our shark clothespin craft, we made some shark attach drinks for snack time before church.  There are a few different alcoholic recipes out there.  But we obviously like to keep things kid friendly around here and so we use kid friendly drinks.

Shark Attack Drinks

We start with having some clear round glass bowls (we got ours from the Dollar Tree a long time ago and I use them for many different type parties).  We also use my tall taster dessert cups from one of my mini dessert server sets.  We start by gathering all of our ingredients:  7 up (or some sort of clear soda), punch or red koolaid, Swedish fish (we use tiny mini ones from Dollar General), a package of Nerds or if you have time to order them, use Candyfetti from Sweets Indeed.  You can find her shop on Etsy and her candies are THE BEST!  Also grab a bag of gummy sharks – we found ours at Dollar General.

Start by putting a gummy shark in each of the mini tall tester glasses and pour some of the red koolaid punch into the glasses as well.

 

Then you will wet the rim of the taster glass (use your CLEAN finger or use a clean wet paper towel).  Over turn the round glass “fish bowl” and place the taster glass to the middle of the bowl.  Once you have secured the glass completely against the bottom of the bowl, gently turn the bowl right side up.

After you have righted the bowl, add your sea “rocks” aka Nerds or Candyfetti and also add in any other underwater life you wish – we used our mini Swedish fish.  You will then add in your clear soda.  You can stop here at this step before doing your “shark attack” or you can add blue food coloring to make the drink more “bluish tinted”.  The blue does tend to make seeing a little harder and the red “attack” less of an “attack”.

Once you have your drink ready, you can uplift your taster glass and let your gummy shark and red punch rush out.  The red will float through the drink and give an appearance of a shark attack in the drink.  If you wish to do a less gory version of this drink, simply omit the taster glass and red punch and just add your shark, pebbles, and fish all to the bottom of the glass bowl and pour in your soda or drink of choice – for an “Under the Sea” version of the drink.  Now just add a straw and ENJOY!

The water (drink) will appear murky – just as sea water might.  And you never know where your shark will be lurking!

 
  

  
  

That was the end to Day 3.  We had other activities planned, but due to unforeseen events (doctors appt etc) we just went with the flow of what we could get done.  We may try to carry over some of our activities into next week – just so we can still do them and learn.  Or we may save them for another time.  Either way we are enjoying our time spent together and learning more about and having fun with sharks!

 

Shark Week – Free printable Banner

It wouldn’t be a festive Shark Week without having a mini party or at the very least some fun Shark Week decorations.  Last year we shared with you this fun BEWARE banner printable.  This year we thought we would share this mini Shark bite “Shark Week” banner for you to add to your collection.  We hope you enjoy it!

Please remember my copyright and usage clause.  You may use any of my free printable for personal use only.  You may not resale them in any way, sort or fashion – whether digital or physical.  You may also not use any piece or portion of the art in any new way or part of any other digital design or collaboration.  The art may not be tampered with and must stay in it’s original form.  Please also remember to credit and refer others back to us when you use these pieces – especially when posting online or on any social media.  We appreciate your respecting our policies on this.  Thank you!

Just click on the link below for a pdf version of the file.

 

IMG_2821IMG_2820Shark Week Mini Banner