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Haunted Mansion Inspired - Free Halloween Printables

Welcome Foolish Mortals... to the Haunted Mansion! Growing up in Southern California and being raised on Disney Princesses meant many trips to Disneyland as a child. Today I celebrate turning 25 by sharing some free Halloween printables inspired by a ride in a place that is near and dear to my heart - Disneyland's Haunted Mansion!

The color pallet included purple, green, black, and orange. The cupcake wraps were inspired by the Mansion Maids costumes and the iconic mansion wall paper. The prints I've created include a welcome sign featuring the hitch hiking ghosts and a Tomb Sweet Tomb cross-stitch. Check out my Haunted Mansion Pinterest Board for other decor ideas!

The tombstone cookies by Marinold Cakes were actually printed with edible ink using printables that Disney created. Check out the links down below to see other FREE Printables by Disney that would go with this party - especially the Tomb Sweet Tomb Treat Boxes! They are perfectly sized for making sure your little monsters don't make off with too much candy!


The Power of a Flower

What little girl doesn't love flowers? They come in all kinds of colors and shapes and they smell AMAZING! I am obsessed with the LA Flower District. I love turning onto Wall St when the smell of fresh flowers immediately fills your car. It instantly brightens my entire day and is a very welcomed change of pace from the other smells that can be found in downtown LA.

I was tickled pink at all the blooms that awaited me at part 2 of the joint birthday party. For those that follow me on Instagram, you know that I've been busy crafting paper flowers and I am so very proud of how beautiful the rose arch turned out. They matched perfectly with the pink ombre color scheme and with the paper flower bouquets my aunt, Marivic of Marinold Cakes made. Speaking of flowers she made, check out all the amazing blooms that can be found on the framed pictures of the celebrant on the main cake, the square rosette cake, and the cookies. I still can't believe she made the sweets for both parties!

Another flower feature that I loved working on was the pink baby's breath letters that hung above the candy bar. Guests had no problem cleaning out both the dessert table and candy bar. Candies coordinated with the gold, white, and ombre pink color palette; they included sixlets, chocolate balls, gum balls, chocolate kisses, jelly beans, salt water taffy, and Ferrero Rocher. It was truly a sweets spectacular for an even sweeter little girl - Happy 7th Birthday Mia!

Bow Ties are Cool

Last weekend was quite a weekend for Sugar and Soirées. Not only did we complete our first boy party, but it was also our first joint birthday party. Setting up for two completely different themes was quite a task but we're so pleased with how it turned out. Today I'm proud to share with you Gabriel's 10th birthday Dessert table. The theme was a mix of Steampunk elements and Dr. Who - none of which I was familiar with. Internet searches and pinning led to some great ideas. If you follow us on Instagram, you will find the completed gear candy bar tags. I think they compliment the extra large mason jars so perfectly.

I had so much fun collaborating with my oh so talented aunt - Marivic of Marinold Cakes. Can you believe she did the cake, cookies, and cupcakes for both parties?! She's amazing! Details to look out for include the assorted cookies, bow tie print, steampunk clock, cupcakes, and candy bar. The color pallet included Tardis Blue, Shades of Brown, Gold, Copper, Black, and Pops of Red. The candy bar featured salt water taffy, chocolate coins, kisses, truffles, gummy bears, toffee, swirl pops, and Ferrero Rocher. Flavors included Chocolate Hazelnut, Caramel, Milk Chocolate, Black Cherry, Blue Raspberry, and Toffee. It was all so delicious! Such a fun party both plan to attend - Thank you for checking it out and Happy 10th Birthday Gabriel!!

I Believe in Forever

I met my husband when I was 15. It was not love at first sight. In fact, I thought he was going to be trouble because he came off incredibly rude and defiant. Not the type of personality you want to deal with when you're in a class leadership position. Fortunately, he was able to make up for his very bad first impression and I was happy to find out that he was not even close to being that type of person. He was the polar opposite - incredibly sweet and trusting. Over time, we became friends.

Fast forwarding to our first date, we had the usual high school teen plans: dinner and a movie. We were on our way when Ryan realized his parents had something that he needed. They were over at a friend's house for a game night so we swung by. On our very first date I met Ryan's family and the Petersen family. I have known the Petersen family for as long as I have known my in-laws. Over the last 10 years (yikes... has it been that long?!) I've watched their friendship with my husband's family endure despite the separation of being in 3 different states. Needless to say, they aren't just like family... they are family.

This past June, their daughter Kelsey got married in the San Diego Temple. Being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, I believe that families can be together forever. The Bible teaches us that Peter was given the keys of heaven and he was promised 'whatever thou shalt bind on earth shall also be bound in heaven'   (Matthew 16:18-19)

What makes a temple marriage different from any other marriage ceremony is that we believe in using the same Priesthood authority, or keys, that the apostle Peter once held to make promises, or covenants, in the temple not only with our spouse but with God. Honoring that covenant allows us to extend marriage beyond 'until death do us part' into heaven and eternity.

What a blessing it was to see Kelsey and Cody make those very special promises to each other and watch as they bound their two families into one. It was a wonderful day and they celebrated it in a very beautiful way. Isn't the coral and turquoise color palette amazing? My mother-in-law and I took on the candy bar. Kelsey decided she wanted an all turquoise candy bar since there was a lot of coral already incorporated in the decor. Being one of my favorite colors, I absolutely love how it turned out. The candy included gum balls, rock candy, sixlets, salt water taffy, old-fashioned candy sticks, chocolate kisses, and customized monogram suckers. The candy bar was displayed on the most darling vintage dresser and mirror combo.

It was a gorgeous love-filled day and I am so happy for Kelsey and Cody. I can't wait to see what the next 10 years will bring. Once you're done perusing the beautiful pictures, be sure to check out the vendor links below!

Venue: San Diego LDS Temple
Reception: Twin Oaks Garden Estate
Photography: Joiedevivre Photography
Flowers: Florals Designs by Jerri Disney
Candy Bar: Sugar and Soirées

Garden Themed 1st Birthday

This last weekend I had the opportunity to travel to San Diego to help my dear friend Joy with her daughter's 1st birthday party. Our families have remained close over the years - her father is my brother's god-father and our mothers were best friends back in the day. I've always considered Joy to be like an older sister to me and it has been so fun to watch as she's become a successful clinical psychologist, loving wife, and now 1st time mom. You can only imagine my excitement when I had the chance to to help her with the dessert table for Amelia's 1st birthday and baptism celebration.

The party had a garden theme with a pink and gold color palette. The backdrop consisted of paper lanterns and tissue paper poms in various shades of pink. I love how the poms resemble flowers and that the custom birthday banner added the perfect pop of gold. The dessert table featured an all pink candy bar as well as baked desserts. The birthday cake by Marinold Cakes was a sweet design of lace and bows in pink and white. The mini chocolate chip cookies were homemade.The gold vases with pink gerber daisies and carnations in the petites fleurs crate added an elegant touch in keeping to the garden theme.

Additional details to look out for are the gold painted mason jars with pink and white flower arrangements that were done Joy's friend Liza and were the centerpieces for the tables. The favor consisted of stamped muslin bags filled with seeds. They were arranged on the wooden herb garden set up. I adore how the paper roses I wrapped the sides with turned out. They transformed an otherwise rustic piece into looking sweet and dainty. I love the overall look and am thrilled that Joy was happy with the dessert table. Happy 1st birthday dear Amelia! I look forward to watching you and Kaylen grow in the years to come.

Dessert Table Styling - Sugar and Soirées
Birthday Cake - Marinold Cakes
Birthday Banner - Little Retreats

Milk and Cookies Birthday Social

Last year, we didn't really get to celebrate my husband's birthday with our daughter's birth and all... so this year Ryan wanted to have a few friends over to celebrate. This was a last minute decision. As in the week before this little shindig was to take place. For most people that is probably not a big deal but for me, that made my mind reel and I went right into planning mode.

To keep things simple, I knew I was only going to serve dessert but the thought of a traditional dessert table seemed too girly and just serving cake seemed way too simple to me. So I focused on one of Ryan's favorite sweets - cookies. We served 3 of his favorite kinds - Burt's Bomb Diggity Chocolate Chip Cookies, Molasses Cookies, and Oreos (his absolute favorite). I baked the cookies myself and even dressed up some of the Oreos with the help of a handy dandy cookie mold and white chocolate.

The recipe for the Molasses Cookies and a tutorial on how to make the Oreos can be found on my Pinterest. The chocolate chip cookies are actually a secret family recipe that my father-in-law doesn't give out. If I can ever convince him to one day give me the ok to share it, I'll be sure to do a feature on how to make them because they are sooo good.

I kept the decor simple and rustic, utilizing a blue and white color palette with pops of silver and brown. I had plain milk in glass bottles that were on ice in a galvanized tub from Etablir Shop. Chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry mixes were available so our guests could flavor their milk to their own preference. Instead of cake, we served cupcakes that I dressed up with some DIY'ed mini paper fans that I made to coordinate with the paper fans used in the background. Overall, I think it all came together nicely and Ryan was happy that I was able to pull together his 'man' party haha. We had a great time with some friends we haven't seen in a while and we're blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful company. Happy Birthday Ryan!


Kaylen's Mermaid 1st Birthday

When Kaylen was born last summer, I knew I wanted to do an outdoor celebration for her 1st birthday. Living in Southern California, the beach quickly became a natural fit for the venue. The mermaid theme emerged upon inspiration from a mint and purple swim suit that I knew would be perfect for Kaylen. With the help of Pinterest, the ideas quickly came to life.

When it comes to kids parties I don’t like to take the theme too literally. I feel like there is a very fine line between pretty and too kiddie. In fact, you won’t find any actual mermaids anywhere in this party. Instead, I focused on mermaid-like elements like the mermaid “tail” tier of the birthday cake and the fun mermaid hair chalking station. I utilized other elements of the ocean to create a cohesive feel – sea shells, sea creatures, sand, bubbles, and loose gems.

I got to get down and DIY dirty by crafting the tassel garland, making the white chocolate sea shells for favors in upcycled baby food jars, re-purposing additional jars for simple centerpieces, and coordinating a candy bar onto the dessert table. I absolutely love how the party turned out and all of our guests had a blast at the beach. I am so very thankful to my wonderful vendors for their amazing talent. Make sure to check out the links to their work below!

Party Design and Styling - Sugar and Soirées
Photography - Jessica Downey Photo
Decorated Cookies and Ruffled Smash Cake - Marinold Cakes
French Macarons - Merely Sweets
Paper Straws - Spiral Sage
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