Under the Sea- Emily's 5th Birthday

There is no way that I have a 5 year old!  Although I'm in total denial our first daughter, Emily turned 5 earlier this month.  We celebrated with an Under the Sea-Little Mermaid Party as she requested seriously 6-7 months ago.  She never changed her mind and she reminded me almost weekly about the party she wanted.  Sounds like a mini-me to me, lol.  I love planning and throwing parties but as my life gets busier it gets harder to execute them.  Even though I knew months in advance what the theme was I didn't get around to the nitty gritty of planning until much closer to the event.  Life is just speeding by.  Luckily I found the perfect solution at Shindigz.  I was literally able to find everything I needed outside of food and drink for the party on their website.  Shindigz covered everything from paper goods to banners to decor.  It was a life saver to do all my shopping from the convenience of the couch and all on one site.  I didn't have to run around town or even several websites; it is a one stop shop, which is right up my alley.  I was so impressed with the variety of items you could choose from.  Thanks to Shindigz I was able to turn our dining room into an under the sea adventure.

I used paper lanterns and streamers to make jelly fish.  The tissue paper pom poms added extra pizazz. Using the same streamers I made seaweed and the paper cut outs of fish and mermaids turned our wall into an ocean.  I loved how I could personalize so many items from Shindigz including a birthday banner, lollipops and photo stand in.  I think having a few personalized items at any party makes it just a bit more special.

I made mermaid tails with sugar cones and glitter card stock which I added to each kid's cupcake.  Each child not only got a yummy cupcake but they also took home personalized lollipops that read, "Thanks for coming to my Shell-ebration. Love, Emily."  The cake was designed to look like a mermaid's tail and I think it turned out perfectly.

I love the extra little details in throwing a party.  So I try to continue the theme into the food & drink as well. The food table I covered with a fish net and served Driftwood, Fish & Chips, Seaweed Salad, Sebastian Dip, Sebastian Sandwiches, and Peanut Butter & Jellyfish.  The drink bar included Sea Water and Spiked Sea Water both in electric blue.

Of course the birthday girl was Princess Ariel and her feisty little sister was Sebastian the Crab (she's crabby so it fit perfectly!).  I was dressed as Ursula but I think our guests just thought I went a little nuts with my makeup.  I made a shell necklace, wore all black, sported teal eye makeup and red lipstick.

The birthday girl with her amazing godparents.

We ended the day with opening gifts; I loved seeing her joy and enthusiasm.  Emily is 5 going on 15 or maybe even 25.  She's outgoing (with recent bouts of shyness), social, confident, full of life and energy, EXTREMELY empathetic, my mini-me, kind, organized, a total klutz, a willing helper, and just an amazing little girl.  I can't believe she's 5 already and yet I don't remember life without her.  Emily tells me all the time she's so happy she made me a mommy and I couldn't agree more.  We will always have a special bond as my first baby.  I can't wait to see her grow and mature although I'd have no problem if time slowed down.

A huge thank you to Shindigz for making Emily's party just perfect and very memorable.  Shindigz saved me so much time and I'm so grateful for that!

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This post is sponsored by Shindigz.  As always all opinion expressed are honest and my own.

Skin So Soft

I think back to high school and even the beginning of college when I rarely washed my face or took care of my skin.  I've always been blessed with really good skin and so I got to skate by without really doing what I was supposed to do.  The only skin care regimen that I started young was wearing face sunscreen every day.  Now that I'm into my thirties and and a lot more stressed I have a whole new outlook on how I care for my skin.  Now there is a whole day and night regimen and somewhat regular Hydra Facials.  I'm doing my best to keep my skin looking clear, taught, bright, and smooth. I'm always excited to try new products that claim brighter skin, less wrinkles, etc.  Recently I've introduced two new lines into my routine: Ole Henriksen and Exquisite Earth Elements.  

Ole Henriksen's 3 Little Wonders collection includes a Truth Serum Collagen Booster, a Invigorating Night Treatment and a Sheer Transformation Creme.  The serum hydrates, calms, and provides your skin with anti-aging nutrients.  Sheer transformation reduces hyperpigmentation and increases cell turnover rate. The night treatment is a firming treatment that also aids in cell proliferation and hydration.  In the morning after washing your skin you apply the truth serum, let absorb for a few minutes, then apply sheer transformation.  You then can continue with sunscreen and makeup.  In the evening, again after cleansing, apply invigorating night treatment, leave to absorb, followed by sheer transformation creme.  I've been using the set for a few weeks and I haven't noticed any changes yet.  I do have to say that I'm quite lucky with my skin so I believe at this point I'm just trying to prevent signs of aging instead of fixing problems.  I like how the products feel and they are very simple to use.  

Exquisite Earth Elements Mask is a Glacial Oceanic Clay which contains over 50 skin nourishing minerals and rare elements.  The clay has negatively supercharged ions that draw out dirt, oil, makeup and other impurities.  The mask helps to eliminate blackheads, absorb excess oil, unclog pores, exfoliate dead skin cells, relieve acne, balance oil secretion, sooth irritated skin, even skin tone, and repair weather damaged skin.  There are no artificial perfumes or colors and no parabens or binding agents.  It's very easy to apply; I love the application brush that it comes with because it's so soft.  You apply all over your face avoiding the eye area, leave on for 15 minutes and then remove with a warm wash cloth.

Don't miss Cyber Monday deals on both products:
Purchase Exquisite Earth Elements mask here.  Use code ANNIEF10 for 10% off.
Find Ole Henriksen's Cyber Monday deal HERE.

Also don't forget to do all your online shopping through Ebates where you will get money back just for shopping.  Click here to get started earning cash plus $10 for signing up:

Ebates Coupons and Cash Back

Ole Henriksen and Exquisite Earth Elements products received in exchange for this review.  3 Little Wonders compliments of Ole Henriksen as part of the #PreenMeVIP program.  As always all opinions expressed are honest and my own.

North Pole Breakfast 2016 & Elf on the Shelf Calendar

Jingle the Elf returned in the middle of the night and we celebrated with a North Pole Breakfast. Tinsley, my goddaughter joined us for the fun!  Jingle brought my girls new holiday tees and all the girls socks, plates, coloring books and candy.  I made Rudolph pancakes, strawberry and banana candy canes, and hot cocoa for breakfast.  After eating we made sugar cookies (that flopped), read Christmas stories, and played.  I love our tradition and look forward to our North Pole Breakfast all year long.

If Elf on the Shelf comes to your house you may want to check out my EOTS calendar.  It's like meal planning for the elf, lol!  Check back for pictures and more fun to come.

Get Your Calendar HERE

Check out our North Pole Breakfasts from other years: