How to be a guest at your own party

(or that time I talked my friend out of having a DIY grilled cheese bar at her son’s first birthday party)

Once upon a time, my friend, a mother of two boys, was running ideas by me for her second son’s first birthday party.  She was expecting 77 guests (43 adults and 30 kids). It was October, two weeks shy of Halloween.  She ordered a bouncy castle, organized mini pumpkin painting and a DIY grilled cheese bar. Continue reading

How to pack a summer deck bin to save time

If you have small kids, you know that getting outside to play in the summer heat is quite the task.  By the time you’ve finished sun-screening, putting shoes on and finding hats and sunglasses, half an hour has gone by.  My kids love playing outside and we eat most of our meals outside too, weather permitting, so I keep a bin on the deck with supplies we usually need, to avoid having to run in and out of the house all day.

deck bin contents
Keeping a bin on your deck makes heading outside with the kids quick and easy. (Some items not shown.)

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Four boozable virgin summer cocktails

Summer is here and there’s nothing I love more than an ice-cold cocktail on the deck, while basking in the sun.  And by basking in the sun, I mean parenting my four kids.  Some days are long, and it feels like five o’clock is so far away so why not get a head start with a virgin cocktail. If you want to (or need to) you can booze it up when five o’clock hits, if you like to play by the rules. Continue reading