Fall Backyard Birthday Party and Movie Night

Last month we celebrated Brent's birthday in our backyard for a little party and movie night.  We had just returned that week from our vacation so the party ended up being fairly simple.

During our trip we had spent a few days in Iceland where we tried, supposedly, the world's best hotdog.  It was pretty amazing so I decided to use the idea as the foundation of our menu for the party.  Though the Icelandic hotdog is a little different, I did my best to recreate it.  The combination of onions and mustard's made for a crunchy and sweet topping.  I am not usually a very adventurous hot dog eater, so these came out surprisingly delicious!

A theme for the night made this simple meal feel a bit more special while keeping my jet lagged stress at a minimum.

We also served some homemade chili that I made in advance and then threw in the slow cooker the day of.

And a little salad to balance it all out.

Our regular lemonade and water drink station was set out.

Brent set up our movie screen projectos and we played Ghostbuster's during the party.  It was a casual and fun evening...even if I didn't end up having time to put together any centerpieces!

The focus turned to the company and catching up with friends we had not seen in awhile.  Brent's birthday is usually our last outdoor hoorah for the year as the weather quickly starts to turn at the end of October.

It is always a joy to see the little ones run around our yard.  Happy children equal happy parents who get to socialize with other adults!

For the cake, I made my famous ice cream cake.  It is always a hit and has become surprisingly easy to make after all these years of practice.

Those ice cream layers get me every time.

We then ended the night with a few of us watching another movie out on the back patio.  We moved the projector and screen over and lit a warm fire and cozied up for the night.  Don't worry, I do not make my husband watch Twilight on his birthday!  It's just the previews!

October is a busy time of year as we celebrate our anniversary and Brent's birthday just before jumping into the holidays.  I am glad that I did not let coming home from vacation stop us from celebrating.  I could have gotten stressed and all perfectionist about it.  Instead we went with simple.  No centerpieces and easy hotdogs.  Even in the busiest of seasons, I want my husband to feel special and appreciated as well as welcome people into my home wherever life has us for the season.

Styling a Dresser: Two Ways

Dressers are one of my favorite furniture pieces to use in my home. They offer a lot of versatility while also providing tucked away storage. For example, we use a dresser under our TV as a TV console as well as a dresser in our dining room as a buffet.

Moms Group: Potted Canning Jar Plants

The Moms Group that I coordinate at my church is in full swing.  We are into our second session now and time just seems to fly by these days.  But I am grateful for this awesome group of women that gather together weekly, sharing in life, and doing fun things like pot plants together.

For one of our recent crafts we planted flowers and succulents into canning jars.  For the project we set up a potting station consisting of small gravel rocks (for draining in the jar), dirt, plants, and canning jars.  We also set up tissue paper, paper, and kebab skewers to party up their plants with banners and such.

I brought some big storage containers and baking trays to organize the materials trying to prevent too much of a mess!

The women enjoyed picking out their own plants and flowers and dressing up their jar to their liking.  I always love to see the different personalities and designs that come through creating together.

Here are just a few of our little creations.  Our theme for the year is "Bloom" based off of 1 Peter 4:10 so we thought this fun little planting project would encourage the women to bloom where they are planted.

We had a few extra plants when we were finished so we delivered them to our awesome volunteers who help with our children's programming as well as to the sweet women who work in the church office.  A fun morning of creating and chatting as well as spreading some love to others around us!

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