Frozen Birthday Party-Part 2: Decorating

Finally, here is Part 2 discussion & photos of our Frozen themed birthday party from back in January! This post will focus on decorating! Thank you to my friend Erin who took the photos for me!

If you missed Part 1 click here:

Frozen Birthday Party-Part 1: Food

Thanks to Pinterest, there are a ton of great ideas for a Frozen themed party! Many of my ideas came from Pinterest and other ideas are my own! Frozen allows for many great possibilities but way too many for one party on a limited budget.

IMG_2602To recap about the food table, I started out with a purple plastic tablecloth. I stretched out blue and purple tulle over the length of the table as runners. We used paper plates (with purple & blue flowers), plastic forks, and purple & blue napkins, blue basket. The party favors included, Frozen notebooks & pencils,  and Frozen tattoos. I also used blank food tags & water bottle labels to label everything! See where I found everything  in my Part 1 post.IMG_2606

I bought helium filled balloons from our local grocery store to scatter above the food table. During Christmas season, Hobby Lobby has many items that can be used for a Frozen theme. I bought fake snow,  purple  &  teal glitter snowflake ornaments, purple & teal snowflake garland strands, and clear icicle garland strands all from Hobby Lobby. If you are on Hobby Lobby’s mailing list, you get weekly 40% off coupons and if you watch their sales you can find whole sections of the store already discounted.

IMG_2604I bought these lovely Frozen themed decorations from Oriental Trading Company. I hung the banner above the window in the dining room. I hung the swirl decorations around the dining room above the table and in the living room above all the doorways. They just added the needed touch to complete the actual Frozen theme. IMG_2603



IMG_2655We already had these Frozen pillows that the girls received for Christmas! Olaf of course was the favorite among the guests! Olaf was purchased at Target and the throw pillows were purchased at Walmart.







IMG_2629Now comes the kitchen bar decor. I topped it with fake snow, hung the snowflake & icicle garland, and the snowflake ornaments. I put the cake & dessert plates on the bar until it was time to serve. The glass candy jars are filled with decorative candy from Hobby Lobby. A friend uses these for baby shower decorations and she allowed me to borrow them. She tied ribbon on them to match my color theme. Of course, a Frozen themed party is incomplete without Elsa & Anna! These dolls were given to the girls two Christmases ago and were the perfect addition to the bar. IMG_2624Under the bar, I used Frozen bags that we found at Target (in the dollar section!) and stuffed them with tissue paper. You can also see a single snowball! We have a set of indoor snowballs that I scattered all over the living room floor. These were the highlight of the party because the kids had an indoor snowball fight!

IMG_2642IMG_2635 And last but not least: the gift table! I covered the coffee table with the same purple table cloth that is on the food table and topped it with the Frozen mylar balloons found at the local grocery store. Gifts for the girls were placed on and around the table. I tried to specify one side for each girl but that did not work out so well (and it really did not matter).



Here are some free party tips!

Party Keepsakes!

  • Buy a Mylar Balloon that matches the theme of your party. When it looses most of its air (or when you are tired of looking at it), cut a small hole at the base of the balloon to let out the remaining air. Fold the balloon and place it wherever you keep your child’s keepsakes.
  • Save one filled out invitation to put with your child’s keepsakes.

Save Gift Wrap!

  • Gift bags are getting to be expensive! Fold and save all gift bags for future use then you have a stack on hand to choose from without having to run to the store last minute.
  • Tissue paper can be smoothed out and folded neatly for future use. Since tissue paper is usually scrunched into bags, most people will not notice that it has been reused.
  • Wrapping paper can also be smoothed out and folded for future use. Unfortunately, my kids tear into wrapping paper and most of the time it is not salvageable.

Stay Tuned for Frozen Birthday Party-Part 3: Birthday Girls!

Catie Conrad: How to Become the Most (un)Popular Girl in Middle School

This book by: Angie Spady and illustrated by: Channing Everidge is the second in The (Desperate) Diva Diaries which is a Christian alternative to the Dork Diaries. It portrays a Christian girl in public middle school (6th grade) who has to deal with the ups and downs of being a tween. Catie Conrad writes in her diary about all of the drama in her life. In this book, Catie’s family’s mission in this book is to adopt a child through Compassion International. They decide as a family which child they will support as a family. Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and Catie is constantly nervous around the boy she has a crush on. She is still struggling with her feelings and actions towards her brother, Jeremy. But when “the Germ” breaks his leg, Catie learns how to serve him with compassion. She gives him advice on how to deal with the boys at school who tease him. She sees the value in her own advice when she has to deal with the school bully, Miranda Maroni, who does everything she can to rile up Catie. Thank God for BFF, Sophie, and the rest of her friends who stand up for her!

After reviewing the first book in this series, Catie Conrad: Faith, Friendship, and Fashion Disasters! I was excited when asked to read and review book 2! I like how real the storyline is. I feel like I am back in the ups and downs of Middle School. Catie shares her true feelings even if they are not always the best but then shares how she decides to do the right thing by recalling scripture, sermons, or parental & friend advice. While the Christian perspective is scattered throughout the book, the salvation message was not as strong as the first book. Still the message of showing compassion and love towards enemies and those who we dislike is definitely woven throughout the book. I really like these books and know that my daughters will like them as well. I have caught my 8 year old reading portions of it along side of me while I was reading. I still feel like my 8 year old is a little young for some of the content (the crush on boys and popular girl trying to get boys to notice her) but she is able to read the book well from a reading level perspective. She loves the drawings throughout the book (see photos in my review for book 1) which actually goes right along with her personality since she always carries around a notebook for writing and drawing. I think that this book is an easy read and would appeal to tween girls. Parents will love the wholesome storyline and that Catie works through her drama from a Christian perspective.

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that B&H Kids provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.



Order at Christian Book Distributors through the following link!

I get credit for all purchases made through my CBD links!

Catie Conrad: How to Become the Most (un)Popular Girl in Middle School By Angie Spady & Channing Everidge / B&H Kids

And don’t forget book 1 in the series!!!

Catie Conrad: Faith, Friendship and Fashion Disasters By Angie Spady / B&H Kids



Brave Girls: Better Than Perfect

This book is a 90 day devotional (actually 86 specified days) geared toward girls. Honor and Faith are two girls who “wrote” this book with the purpose of remembering that God sees the bigger picture. There are six sections in the book. Each day starts with a scripture verse and ends with a Prayer Pointer (which is a one line prayer that applies to the reading).

Section 1: Truth Detectives— Each day in this section has a Lie that girls believe and the Truth based on scripture. An example of a Lie and Truth are: “I need to have money to be happy” and the Truth is “God not only meets our needs–He’s what we need most!” There is a paragraph or two under both the lie and the truth that helps explain them.

Section 2: Bible Beauties and Beaus— Each day in this section talks about a woman or man in the Bible who God used in a great way. For example, Hagar–The One Who Was Seen & Josiah– The King Who Repented.

Section 3: Divine Design– This section talks about a variety of subjects that show how God’s designed the world around us. Examples include: the platypus, pearls, and chocolate. There is also a baking recipe and instructions for a craft in this section.

Section 4: Body Builders– Each day gives instructions for practical ways of building the reader’s faith and how the reader can encourage others.

Section 5: Character Quest– This section has thought provoking questions related character traits that brave girls will want to cultivate in their lives. For example, courage, truth telling, love, and peace.

Section 6: Mind Games–This section includes instructions to a game, cross word puzzles and an opportunity for the reader to insert her name throughout 1 Corinthians 13 (the Love chapter).

All six of these sections end with a question(s) and space to journal the answer.

I reviewed a different devotional book several months ago with the purpose of trying to find a devotional that was age appropriate for my 8 year old daughter. I thought that book was too advanced for my daughter so when the opportunity to review this book came, I was hopeful that it might be what I was looking for. It was! I am pleased to say that it is perfect for my daughter. She has already started reading it and loves it! I think a 90 day devotional is also a lot less overwhelming than the 365 day book. I think that the devotionals are simple enough for an early chapter book reader to understand but still thought provoking. This will be a good introduction to a daily devotional routine. I would say that this book is for girls who are 7-8 years old through the pre-teen ages.

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that Tommy Nelson provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.



Order at Christian Book Distributors through the following link!

I get credit for all purchases made through my CBD links! 

Better Than Perfect: 90-Day Devotional By Thomas Nelson



Who You Are

This book by John Croyle is a story of second chances and subtitled: “Defying the Circumstances that Define Us.” It is the story of how Big Oak Ranch in Alabama was founded; it’s purpose, vision, and continuous mission. Croyle shares hard lessons learned over his lifetime. He shares difficult to hear and shocking stories of the children who come to the ranch. Every child who comes to the ranch has been abused, traumatized, neglected, abandoned, etc. They all need a chance to have security, love, care, support. Over the past 40 years, Big Oak Ranch has impacted the lives of 2,000+ children.

As the reader, I felt like I was a part of a personal conversation with the author. Croyle weaves scripture and Biblical truths throughout this book to encourage the reader and to explain the ranch mission, the choices he has made over the years, and how he has encouraged the children in his care. He also encourages daily Bible reading, prayer, and Holy Spirit guidance as important life elements that can help anyone face the circumstances in their lives. He also clearly defines character traits that the ranch hopes to instill in the children as they mature and heal from their past wounds (physical, emotional, and spiritual) I would recommend this book to teenagers and adults who have faced difficult circumstances or for those who want to be more aware of what some children face in life.

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that B&H Books provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.



Order at Christian Book Distributors through the following link!

I get credit for all purchases made through my CBD links!

Who You Are: A Story of Second Chances
By John Croyle / B&H Books


Blog Update!

We are finally home after a two week short vacation to Iowa, Delaware, and New York (City)! I am completely exhausted after driving (I was the only driver) all across the country. It was a good trip (even though it was too busy to really be considered a vacation)! The next few weeks I hope to play catch up on the blog and with everything else in life. Here is a list of what is coming soon (in no particular order):

More Frozen Birthday Party Photos/Ideas (from January)

Vacation Photos (including NYC 9/11 Memorial) 11049647_10206395823603538_4857885999379755572_n Book Giveaways!!! (Look for the giveaways closer to summer)

Book Reviews:

  • Brave Girls: Better Than Perfect
  • On Shifting Sand By: Allison Pittman
  • Who You Are By: John Croyle 
  • Boogs and Beans: Everyday Parables For God’s Children By: Britney Hawkings
  • The Pharaoh’s Daughter By: Mesu Andrews
  • BASH and the Chocolate Milk Cows By: Burton W. Cole and Illustrated By: Buddy Lewis
  • The (Desperate) Diva Diaries~ Catie Conrad: How to Become the Most Unpopular Girl in Middle School By: Angie Spady and Illustrated By: Channing Everidge

Resurrection Cookies

Originally posted on Heart Treasures:

Last year, I posted recipes for two types of Resurrection Cookies and how to teach your children the resurrection story through baking. You can read that post here. This year we are only going to make the following recipe which is the less complicated of the two types. This is a great & unique way to teach your children about the resurrection!



Large Marshmallows

Crescent Rolls (uncooked)

Sugar/Cinnamon Mixture

1. Wrap an uncooked crescent roll  around most of the marshmallow–leaving one side of the marshmallow exposed.

~~The crescent roll represents the tomb and the marshmallow shows that the tomb is not empty.

2. Roll the crescent roll/marshmallow tomb in the sugar/cinnamon mixture.

3. Place them on a cookie sheet and bake according to crescent roll directions.

~~Read the resurrection story (using a Children’s Bible or book on your child’s level).

5. As they bake; the marshmallow will…

View original 16 more words

By Alysa Posted in Life


This book by: Dina L. Sleiman is the first book in the Valiant Hearts series. Valiant Hearts features strong females in traditionally male roles. In the case of this book, Lady Merry Ellison is somewhat of a Robin Hood figure. She leads protects a group of orphaned children who were forced from their homes and now live in the forest. Rumors spread and they become known as “The Ghosts of Farthingale Forest.” Her skills with a bow and arrow as well as secrecy allow her to provide for her friends. When she is captured by Timothy Grey, a childhood friend who thought she was dead, she realizes that her heart is torn between her life now and what it could have been. Timothy starts to question his loyalty to the throne when he encounters Merry and her “ghosts.” In an effort to try to protect them, he accidentally puts them in more danger.

The story of Robin Hood is one of my favorite legends (Robin Hood Prince of Thieves has been my favorite movie since I was 13 years old). I was drawn to this book first by the beautiful and unique cover. Then when I realized it had a Robin Hood type theme I knew I had to read it! It has action, suspense, emotion, miracles, and a hint of romance. The characters are believable and diverse. Merry is conflicted about whether or not God truly exists. Her spiritual struggle is apparent throughout the book yet her faith is deepened as the storyline continues. While reading, you can tell that the author researched the time setting and culture. She explains some of her writing decisions in her historical notes at the end of the book. The book is marketed as teen fiction but I am 32 and absolutely loved it! I think any teen or adult who like medieval settings will fall in love with this book!

I am really looking forward to book 2 in the Valiant Hearts series: Chivalrous. It will feature Gwendolyn Barnes, who wants to be a knight, in a Camelot setting! It is due to be released in September 2015!

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that Bethany House provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.




Order at Christian Book Distributors through the following link!

I get credit for all purchases made through my CBD links!

Dauntless, Valiant Hearts Series #1
By Dina Sleiman / Bethany House




Seven Signs That You Need to Read Another Book


LOVE THIS POST!!! These are absolutely legit reasons for reading!

Originally posted on Bethany House Fiction:

Readers, we face a dilemma: not everyone understands our love for books. You know it’s true. There are those skeptics who will look askance at the piles of books on our coffee tables and say things like, “Didn’t you just finish a novel by that author?” or “Don’t you think you have enough books already?”

too many books

In case you have experienced this, you might be wondering if you really need to start another book. Well, I’m here to help. Here’s a handy list to help you evaluate that very question.

You know it’s time for you to read another book if…

One: The last book you read ended too soon. Or if it ended sadly or—hopefully not too often—throw-it-across-the-room badly. Or if it ended on a cliffhanger and the sequel isn’t coming out for a year. Or if it ended at all.

Two: There is housework to be done. As anyone…

View original 439 more words

By Alysa Posted in Life