Friday, August 31, 2012

SURPRISE Party ::: The Reaction


We pulled it off! She never suspected a thing.

As she looked around the room she kept screaming and screaming as she realized who all was there. This moment when she had to brace herself, was when she saw her sister-in-law Carol and nieces Brooke and Jessica who flew in from out of state!

Carol, Brooke & Jessica

Best friend DeeDee. Also from out of state.

She went around the room hugging everyone. And couldn't stop crying. "All the women I love in one room" was how she put it.

Another hug for Carol. Her coming meant the world.

"The BEST birthday surprise ever!"

A GIANT thank you to everyone who made the effort to be here for Mom! And thank you Grandma for letting us use your house. All the stress was worth the result.


Thursday, August 30, 2012

SURPRISE Party ::: The Food at the Party

This is how it all came together. We thought about serving a fun sherbet punch, but then said, "Who are we kidding? If Mom had her choice it would be Diet Coke with Lime." A bucket with ice and cans was WAY easier.

Regular cupcakes with mini chips

Mini cupcakes

Soft pillowy sugar cookies

Tomorrow: The REACTION

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

SURPRISE Party ::: The Food Prep

Food for the party was a bit of a logistical nightmare. We live in Los Angeles, the party was in San Diego. Grandma helped us out by doing a gorgeous fruit platter with her yummy fruit dip and a scrumptious veggie tray.

I started Friday with preheating the oven at 7:30 am. Cut and baked 3 dozen of my famous sugar cookies.

Next came 5 dozen regular and mini cupcakes. Not just any cupcakes. White Wedding Cake Cupcakes.

Then my day got too hot and too busy for any more photos. 

*Cream cheese frosting for the cookies.

*Buttercream frosting for the cupcakes. Tried a new recipe. FANTASTIC!

*A trip back to the grocery store because I miscalculated my sour cream usage.

*Spinach dip.

*Chopping veggies and grating carrots to put in the cream cheese spread for the mini bagels.

I worked until 7:30 pm when we loaded the car and left for San Diego.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

SURPRISE Party ::: The Decorations

We started planning the decorations almost before we finished saying the words "lets throw Mom a surprise party." Some were more time consuming than others, but the overall effect was exactly what we were hoping for.

Crochet doilies

Turned into doily garland



Paper medallions and giant origami dress.

Lace wrapped "J"

Paper dress and heart garland.
More medallions, origami dress and doily.

Adorable pic of Mom.

Disclaimer: we did not take NEARLY enough pics at the party. The lighting was bad, too. But better than it was when we decorated at 11pm the night before.

Tomorrow: food prep

Monday, August 27, 2012

SURPRISE Party ::: The Invites

My mom's birthday is at the end of the month. She has been so selfless the past year and a half---dedicating her life as the caregiver for dad as he battles bladder cancer. My sister and I decided that it would be fun to throw her a SURPRISE party! It would have to be a party of the surprise kind because she would never consent to it.

We pulled it off!!! She was SO surprised! I'll be sharing party details the rest of the week. For now, the invites.

First make 40 origami dresses.

Next type up the insert. Format it perfectly. Fight with my printer. Email file to sister at work. Re-format because her computer doesn't convert the correct fonts. Settle for the next best thing. Print them anyway because they have to go out in the mail ASAP.

Don't forget the labels!

In the envelopes they go!

Tomorrow: decorations.

Monday, August 13, 2012

They're Over

I'm going through Olympics withdrawals. I watched more coverage of the games than I ever have before. Some of the events seem ridiculous to me, but I can appreciate the honor it is for these individuals to represent their countries. I'm not ashamed to admit that I shed more than a few tears over the course of the past few weeks. So many inspirational stories and journeys.

One of the most inspiring is Oscar Pistorius. If you don't know who he is you must have been living under a rock. His outlook and attitude towards life and hardship put things into perspective. "My mother used to tell us in the mornings, 'Carl put on your shoes, Oscar you put on your prosthetic legs . . . So I grew up not really thinking I had a disability. I grew up thinking I had different shoes."

His sporting motto is: "You're not disabled by the disabilities you have, you are able by the abilities you have." I LOVE this quote.

The Olympics are more than a sporting event. They are human stories about dreams coming true. I can hardly wait for 2014 in Sochi, Russia.