the ultimate little miss blog

November 27th

Harlow Turned 2 with an LMP in a Box

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If you haven’t already heard all the buzz….we’ll be the first to tell you that we have officially launched Little Miss Party in a Box!
Imagine…you have a party to throw, no time to put it together but you order one of our boxes and it arrives on your doorstep so all you have to do is set it up! Order some food, add drinks and voila! You’ve got yourself a party.
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Our friend Ilana of Mommy Shorts, wanted to throw a low key party for her daughter, Harlow’s 2nd birthday. I asked her if she would be a test case for one of our feature boxes: Little Miss Birthday Party in a Box. She was thrilled.
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For Harlow’s first birthday I went all out and helped put on a PJ’s & Pancakes themed brunch. For her other daughter Mazzy we pulled a miracle Milk n Cookie’s 3rd birthday. And of course then there was the joint Superhero party for my son Gavin and Ilana’s husband Mike.
For Harlow’s 2nd…I dropped the box off…and LEFT. Ilana set it all up by herself, ordered bagels, served coffee and mimosas and guess what? I got to be a GUEST! Was quite the feeling. And I was so proud to see how she turned our box into a beautiful party! Even my little one was in awe of it all…
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The most difficult task Ilana had from the items in our box was finding a spot to hang this banner….
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We even include bags for the favors…!
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Harlow woke up to her home fully set up and ready to party. She couldn’t wait for her friends to arrive!
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And when they did…they didn’t waste any time…
Ilana is not a baker BUT was so inspired by the cupcake kit that comes in our box she baked some cupcakes. Out of a box. Because why not? SO easy, kids love em and we give you the liners and the flags to make them look extra pretty!
Let me allow my son Luke to model these cupcakes on the adorable Happy Birthday dessert plates that we include in this birthday box for you…
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Another really cool feature of our LMP in a Box is that we include a party blueprint full of tips to complete your party and suggestions for setting it all up.
I LOVE that Ilana actually followed along!!
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There’s a huge jumbo balloon filled with confetti and a string of really pretty tissue tassel hand made by one of our fabulous partners, One Stylish Party. In the blueprint we advise you take this balloon to your local party store OR florist! Bet you didn’t think to ask the florist down the road if they have a helium tank. Well I’m sure that they do! While you’re there…pick up a couple stems of flowers and then place them in jars that you find in your home – milk bottles, wine bottles or I’m sure you have a vase lying around…no need to spend a lot of money.
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Ilana even took it all a step further…she decided to get crafty with the cake. The perfect way to bring in a theme to this LMP in a Box! With a white cake for the base Ilana took a glue gun, toilet paper roll, some pretty paper and M&M’s and made the prettiest carousal cake I’ve ever seen.
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The party was so nice. I was relaxed the entire time (which is such a rarity for me) and I loved seeing our work come to full fruition from not only a friend but a mom who I know works so hard and has no time to pull off a party this pretty.
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Are you sold? I bet. Click here to purchase your very own Little Miss Birthday Party in a Box and save yourself the headache of trying to plan all the details on your own!

*all of the photos above were taken by Karilyn Sanders.

categories: Birthday, Confetti, Decorating, DIY, For Mom..., Gifts, Little Miss Mommy, little miss party, Little Miss Party in a Box, Napkins, Party, Party Favors

November 26th

Little Miss Party Holiday Gift Guide 2014

The Ultimate Little Miss Party Gift Guides to help you find something creative for everyone on your list. Scroll through for discount codes and a giveaway.

Holiday List - For the Hostess

Rodin Luxury hand and body Cream  // Extra moisture for the cold months ahead
Doma serving set from Anthropologie // Gold and gorgeous
C.Wonder ikat polka dot appetizer plates // Gorgeous on any holiday table – 40% off online until 12/1
Foil-pressed personalized stationary from Minted // Nothing beats a hand-written note
Brooklyn Slate cheese board // The way cheese deserves to be displayed
Oh Joy! For Target striped stoneware pitcher // We love to use as a vase for fresh flowers
Calypso St. Barth gold trim agate coasters // Almost too pretty to use!
Dwell Studio faceted white vases // Modern and white, the perfect combination

Holiday List - little prince
Dinosaur A-Z Alphabet Puzzle from Little Circus // Make his ABC’s more fun!
City Skyline Glow Blocks from Norman & Jules // The city really doesn’t sleep
Kids Star Wars Cookbook and lightsaber ice-pop tray from J.Crew // Is there anything this company doesn’t do?
Hape Toys Discovery Space Center from Target // Made from sustainable materials for your little learner
Land of Nod Tree House // For the kid who always wanted a tree house. 15% off and free shipping until 12/1
Piccolini NYC Hot Dog/Pretzel baseball tee // The “it” shirt for those in the know

Holiday List - little princess

Land of Nod pink floral canvas teepee // Camping never looked this glamorous – 15% off and free shipping until 12/1
Gray glitter sneakers from Little Circus // A little sparkle goes a long way
BlaBla Doll  // For extra cuddle time
Roominate building toys for girls
 // A Shark Tank success story
Land of Nod wooden doll stroller // Even the fussiest dolls will love this stroller – 15% off and free shipping until 12/1
Ballerina Duvet and Pillowcase set // Now she can dance in her sleep
Wooden Magic Slate multi-color drawing house // Perfect for the car


Holiday List - stocking stuffers
Fatty Sunday’s DIY Pretzel Kit // use code FSxLMPP10 for 10% off their site through 12/31
DryBar Up Up and Away Travel Set // the only haircare you will ever have to pack. Check out our Instagram for a free giveaway
Cards for Humanity // The card game for horrible people.  Awkward, inappropriate, and nothing but laughs
Nudo Olive Oil // Olive oil from your own tree in italy.  Really!
Ban.do Hot stuff thermal mug // Is there really any other way to do morning?
Kiehls Lip Balm // Still the best
J.Crew Socks // Put a little twist on business casual

categories: Gift Guide, Little Miss Mommy

November 25th

3 Ways to keep your Little Turkeys busy on Thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving is days away. There are groceries to buy, ingredients to get prepped, wine to chill. All to do while tending to our little ones.  It’s one of my favorite holidays but seriously, since having kids, it’s a doozy. There is so much that you put into this one day!
Who am I to complain though?  Great food, family and friends?  I’ll take it! I just need my kids to keep busy so I can enjoy it all!
Here are a few ideas on how you can get the kids table set up with activities to enjoy throughout your gathering…and don’t worry…these are EASY ideas…you can handle it!
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1.)   Turkey Apples:  Does it get cuter then this??  No seriously folks. Does it? Here’s what you need for the set up:
*An apple for each child
*Toothpicks
*Edible Items to create your turkey – check your pantry before you buy anything! Examples are: Mini marshmallows, Cranberries, baby tomatoes, candy corn…
*Googly eyes and craft glue
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Now your kids can STICK it to the apple! That’s the name of the game. Let the kids stick the items onto toothpicks and poke ‘em into the apples to create turkey. Glue the googly eyes on (and any other crafty items you may have on hand…like pom poms). So fun!
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2.)   The Giving Tree: Do you own this book?  If you don’t, get it!  Makes for a GREAT holiday gift. What a fabulous book. Well the Giving Tree and my Aunt Marissa who is the craftiest gal around were the inspiration for this next holiday activity. Here’s how you do it –
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*Tree branch – check the street or your backyard for a clean branch. Take it home and set into a block of clay or a small pumpkin..
*Grab some construction paper or card stock and trace + cut a leaf out for each child. Is your child old enough to use scissors?  Then let them do this step instead!
*Have a hole puncher and string or twine on hand…
*Set out markers and ask your children to write on their leaf – what are you thankful for.
*Hang the leaves on the tree and what do you have?  A giving tree!
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3.)   SNACKS: We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. SNACKS SNACKS SNACKS are the key to keeping kids quiet and happy.  Here’s what I’ve noticed from all of the entertaining that I have done since having children…when other children are around – my kids want nothing to do with me or eating. They turn into wild lunatics and won’t sit still for one second. SO…I set out tons of snacks to give them something to grab and run with as they go nuts. Here’s what we suggest serving to the little ones this Thanksgiving…so at least they eat something!
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*Festive crudités: My kids happen to love veggies. If yours don’t – please don’t stop reading. Just trust me when I tell you…if you make it look a little prettier then normal…they may be willing to try it. For Thanksgiving we used orange and yellow veggies (set out fruit too!) and hollowed out a pumpkin for some ranch to dip. Crunchy, delicious and EASY!
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*Pumpkin pie muffins. We did a quick search and found the easiest recipe possible. Add some powdered sugar on top and be careful…these will go FAST! They are delicious.  And if you overbought on ingredients…use them on your platters! How pretty do these muffins look on a bed of cranberries?!
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Have any great craft ideas or recipes to share with us for Thanksgiving? Leave us a note in the comments. We’d love to hear what you’re cookin’ up this Thanksgiving!
We are so excited to spend time with our families this week…and dare I say, relax a little bit?!
However you’re spending it…Happy Turkey Day!
Gobble Gobble.

*All photos above were taken by the lovely Karilyn Sanders.

categories: Appetizers, Decorating, Food, Holidays, Kids eats, Little Miss Foodie, Little Miss Mommy, Photography, Sweets, Toddler activities

November 24th

Mandy’s Meals & Mores

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Thanksgiving is almost here! Dust off your china and pull out the silver…just kidding, Thanksgiving can be easy and casual. Here’s a couple tips and tricks using items that are accessible and inexpensive.
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Delicious olives in a mini pumpkin? Yes please! Simply cut off the top of any “gourd” and scoop out the seeds and “brains”. The seeds would be fabulous later roasted with a little garlic powder and rosemary. YUM!
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We’ve got munchies covered, what about the table? People stress too much about the details, we need room for food after all. Here is a super cute option for napkins, even the most novice of host can master this trick!
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Lay out the square napkin, can be paper or cloth either works, and begin to fold the full length of the napkin back and forth in opposite directions like a fan. Keep the folds about an inch thick. Once you have finished the whole napkin fold in half and grab the “handle”.
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Now it’s time to get creative: slip on a napkin ring, tie a ribbon, or wrap some twine. Go nuts.
What about the kids? Getting them involved in set up can be fun!
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Have them choose from different colored napkins to stuff their glasses with. Cover the tables with craft paper for crayon play before or after dinner.
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Use fresh herbs on their table and ask them to smell and taste them…
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If you’ve got time to make pie, kids often love helping in the kitchen. No time? No Problem! Buy a premade pie from the baker and make some homemade whip cream. Like what you see below? Copper Moscow Mule mugs and Thanksgiving plates both from Crate and Barrel.
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Wishing all of our favorite Americans a fabulous thanksgiving filled with delicious food, family and friends.
-M

Photos above were taken by Karilyn Sanders.

categories: Appetizers, Baking, Chicken & Turkey, Cocktails, Dinner Party, Guest Post, Holidays, Little Miss Foodie, Sweets

November 21st

Ready, Set, Weekend with The Garden of Eatin’

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This is probably one of the most stunning things I have ever made in my life. Back in the summertime, I made a similar recipe using a yogurt and fruit combo and kept it very healthy. From what I have been reading lately, dark chocolate is now the new yogurt and is considered to be good for you.
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Here’s some facts about the health benefits of chocolate that I found very interesting (and if this is true….COME TO MAMA BABY!)
1. Chocolate decreases stroke risk
2. Chocolate reduces the likelihood of a heart attack
3. Chocolate protects against blood inflammation
4. Chocolate helps with math – * I wish I knew this when I was in school because I suck at arithmetic
5. Chocolate may prevent cancer
6. Chocolate reduces the risk of diabetes
7. Chocolate is good for your skin
8. Chocolate can control coughs
9. Chocolate improves blood flow
10. Chocolate strengthens your brain
11. Chocolate makes you live longer – see cool fact below
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Jeanne Louise Calment lived to the age of 122—the oldest anyone has ever lived. She ate two and a half pounds of dark chocolate per week. Researchers found that eating chocolate actually adds two years to your life expectancy…..(two pounds of chocolate a week???!! It may help you live longer but what size jeans did this Jeanne Louise Calment wear??)
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Okay, so don’t just start binging on chocolate! Most of the chocolate you buy in the grocery store is heavily processed, which means that it has lost many of its healthy chemicals. And some of the research above supporting chocolate’s healthy characteristics was paid for by chocolate manufacturers….well duh. Check out your local organic food stores for the unprocessed kind. Um…if all of the above could remotely be factual, then why not indulge?
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The Garden of Eatin’s Chocolate Bark:
16 ounces melted best-quality dark, semi or milk chocolate (2 bars)
3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
(colored melting chocolates, optional)
2/3 cup mixed toppings such as nuts, coconut, sea salt, cranberries etc. (might as well go wild since you are going to be scarfing down chocolate).
Can we talk about the ins and outs of melting chocolate for a second? I always like to speed things up in the kitchen. Lately I have been melting chocolate in the microwave and although the results are good, there really isn’t anything quite like doing this task in heat proof bowl over slow boiling water.
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How to belt out a perfect melt:
Place water in the bottom of the double boiler or a use a pot and a heatproof glass bowl that fits well inside and doesn’t touch the water (leave about a ½ inch space between the water and the bowl). Place the double boiler over low heat. Stir the chocolate constantly until it is melted. The water in the bottom of the double boiler should not come to a  high boil while the chocolate is melting. Working with chocolate has to be quick so that it doesn’t harden. Your chocolate should have a beautiful sheen to it and should be a good consistency for spreading. If by chance the phone or doorbell rings in the middle of this project and your chocolate turns to glop, fear not. There is a way to fix it. Just place the bowl over the water again and add a few drops of water to the chocolate, stirring constantly until you regain that smooth sheen and consistency back.
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Next:
Line a baking pan with wax paper. You can use a small baking sheet OR a 8 inch square pan. I opted for the pan because I wanted a thicker piece of bark to sink my teeth into…OH YA.
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Spread your melted chocolate evenly in the pan and dot with melted colored chocolates, if desired. I used the end of a chopstick to make my marble swirlies but this is totally optional. It was fun and pretty to do but let’s face it, if you are making this for yourself you don’t need to fuss. If you are considering this for a gift, which is an awesome idea, the possibilities are endless.
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Once your chocolate base is ready top, with any combo of goodies you desire. I used crushed pistachios, sliced almonds and coconut.
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Chill until firm and then crack em up with a mallet or just punch the heck outta of it with your fist.  I like this idea…don’t you?
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See ya next week!
debi @thegardenofeatin
xoxo
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categories: Baking, Dessert, Dinner Party, Gifts, Guest Post, Little Miss Foodie, Sweets, The Garden of Eatin'

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