April 12, 2017

Chef Lukes goes Pacman for National Grilled Cheese Day

You know that saying “it’s so easy a kid could do it”? Well…that’s how we feel about grilled cheese. Seriously, it’s so easy, our own little Chef Luke made it!

Since it’s National Grilled Cheese day today we thought of a fun way to celebrate with our little guy.

Chef Luke whipped up a few grilled cheeses (all by himself!) slapping two pieces of bread together with his favorite slices of cheese inside (cheddar and muenster) and then grilled it up in a hot skillet filled with butter.

Now since Chef Luke loves to play with his food…we let him do just that. We found Pacman cookie cutters for him to cut the grilled cheeses out into Pacman shapes. With all the cut shapes, he built a game board on one of our black trays with grape tomatoes and cherries.  HOW CUTE IS THIS?!!

Watch Chef Luke in action here…

Happy National Grilled Cheese Day, friends!

Video by Maggie Antalek
Photos by Abby Copleston

xx, Seri
Post your comment

*Required

April 10, 2017

Crafty Easter Eggs

Easter is approaching quickly, so we decided we would do this week’s DIY project with the upcoming Holiday in mind.  Seri’s boys and their friend, Eryn, came over after school and we got to crafting!

We’re always trying to find a way to repurpose supplies that we already have in the studio, so we decided to use these leftover tissue tassels to decorate Easter Eggs! You can also use regular tissue paper. Besides that, all you need are some hard boiled eggs, Mod Podge, and paint brushes.

First, we cut our tissue paper down into small pieces that would easily glue onto the eggs.

Next, we set the kids up with their own cup of Mod Podge and a paintbrush.

We were careful about showing them how to add small amounts Mod Podge to the egg before placing their pieces of tissue paper on top.

Once they had the hang of it, we let their creativity run free!

Even Seri joined in the fun to make an Easter Egg!

Luke took a quick snack break….

While Eryn worked hard to make the prettiest egg of the bunch.

It was safe to say the girls ruled this craft, but in the end, all the eggs made for the most perfect Easter decoration.

xx, Maggie
1 comments
Party conversation
  1. Hassain Shareef

    Thank you for sharing this great article i hope its work to me and its helpful birthday party events

Post your comment

*Required

March 16, 2017

Q&A With Aunti Marissa

Today, Ilana and I had breakfast as we do every Thursday (or sometimes Tuesdays or Wednesdays depending on our schedules) with a special guest joining us:  Aunti Marissa.

Aunti Marissa is my Aunt now Great Aunt to my boys who she shares a very special bond with. She lives in Toronto and is Head of the Guidance department in a secondary public high school. She has been a teacher for her entire career and this year won Teacher of the Year in her board. Pretty huge and so deserving.

She’s a person I trust deeply when it comes to advice about my children and today I opened up the Q&A to her instead of Ilana and I. There was an overwhelming response from you all on Snapchat. We were going to each answer 3 questions however we ran way short on time.

Because Aunti Marissa has such great advice to share we decided to answer the third question chosen plus a few additional questions asked on the blog today. Hope you find Aunti Marissa’s answers helpful! I think you will…

How can I get my 5 year old to want to clean up? Pick up toys and such…

Prior to the situation occurring, parents must sit down and have a discussion with the child about household responsibilities. You need to create a chart defining everyone’s duties one of which will include “tidying up after playing”. It is important that children realize what the parent’s expectations are beforehand. If you try to address it in the moment, there will be tension and resistance. Now, with expectations come consequences if the expectation is not met. These consequences need to be decided beforehand as well with the involvement of the child so that they are clear. If and when the situation arises again there are no arguments. If the child does what they agreed to do by cleaning up their play area, great if not consequence number one is put into action. The child knows that you mean business. There is no loud voice on the part of the parent. Calm and cool. Just remind your child of the agreement. Have the chart in plain view so that you can refer to it. In time, the child will take control of their own duties and only the odd reminder may be needed. NOTE: The consequences must be acted upon or this plan will be for naught.

What techniques do you have for getting really smart kids to listen and behave in class when they already “get” the lesson?

This is a very difficult situation to be sure. You will have to have some strategies that you can work through with your child while you are at home first. They need to learn to take control of their own behavior. Your child needs to have “tools” in his/her toolbox that they can draw upon when the situation in school arises. Secondly, you need to set up a meeting with the teacher to discuss some options for classroom behavior management. What plan is the teacher willing to facilitate? For example, when your child is finished their work ahead of time, will the teacher be willing to allow your child time to research an extension to the topic? Would you be able and would the teacher allow you to provide some materials that could enhance your child’s learning? As an example, would your child’s teacher be willing to allow your child to create an easy experiment such as the one I have copied and pasted below. This would be an engaging extension and give your child something to look forward to. They could make predictions and then chart the progress and then explain it to the class. Sometimes teachers will give “extra” worksheets to children who are finished quickly but it is not always received by the student as a positive solution. Maybe there can be a “maker space” created in the classroom that could be used by all students but would be a positive addition for your child to be sure. This space gives children the opportunity to understand the concept being taught by using physical manipulatives or technology to enhance their learning. Maybe all parents could donate materials to build up this space.

I’m a mom with disabilities. I have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and MS. It’s hard to keep up with a 10 & 2 year old. How can I make sure they feel like they have my attention? I’m in chronic pain and feel like I miss a lot of their life. I want them to know how much they mean to me.

First of all, I cannot profess to understand or identify with your situation. It is a very difficult one to be sure. Here are some ideas:

I am not sure how much your older son understands and if he comprehends your limitations. You need to have a discussion with him to discuss what you can and cannot manage. He needs to be able to be allowed to help plan ideas around what works for you. Secondly, he needs to be invested in his younger sibling. By that I mean he can become not just a brother but a mentor to your younger son. He can be the one to teach him how to do certain things and maybe read to him so that they develop a special bond and your little man looks up to his older brother. Now as far as your older son’s needs go, you must give him the opportunity to participate in his normal activities as much as possible. This may mean that someone else takes him or if you can manage it you take the little one with you. If you are able to go too, maybe there is another adult who could watch your younger son to give you some special one on one time.

I suggest that you have a family meeting to discuss your needs and create a duty roster, which accounts for everyone’s personal and emotional needs, household duties and chores, (which should include your little one) and activities and school responsibilities. This needs to be a working document that changes weekly. It should include quiet bonding time with mom. The activity could be a craft that is geared to your older son such as putting together a birdhouse (just an example). For your younger son, you can get a pre-made version at one of the dollar stores or a craft store and your little one paints it and puts on embellishments. Same outcome different difficulty level.

Your duty roster must include every part of your day in order to “find time” to make sure that your children feel your presence and include you in their daily ritual without anger or frustration.

I hope that I have provided you an idea that you can use and I wish you all the best!

Any travel tips for a first flight with my 8 month old?   First time momma here!

First of all, I would recommend the bulkhead if at all possible so that you will have extra space in front of you. I was able to put my daughter down on a blanket to play with them. Secondly, I would recommend an arsenal of favorite toys or a book and snacks. Thirdly, I found that nursing (if you are nursing) or giving them a bottle upon take off and landing helps to stabilize the pressure in their ears. Happy flying!

xx, Seri
1 comments
Party conversation
  1. Jessica Mischna

    Thanks Aunti Marissa this is great!

Post your comment

*Required

March 3, 2017

Basement Beauty with Better Homes and Gardens

People used to always tell me – don’t do a major renovation in your home until you have lived there for a little while. Boy is that ever TRUE! Once you live in a home you get a feel for what works and what doesn’t, especially when you have children.

In our home out on eastern Long Island, we had an unfinished basement. After 5 years of living there, I finally decided what I wanted (and needed) to do with it.

I asked my friend Lisa of Abaca Interiors if she would spear head the project. Thankfully she accepted and did the most amazing job bringing my vision for this basement to life.

For starters, I needed storage. Storage for all of the Little Miss Party supplies we have accumulated over the years. So Lisa suggested we take one of the walls and turn it into custom built in cupboards that flush into the wall. I took great advantage of these closets filling them with vases, candle holders, cake stands and so much more.

The most important thing to me when designing this basement was to make it feel like a regular room in the house. Not like a basement.

Lisa suggested the wood panels for the ceiling and very light grey stone tiles for the flooring. I love love love how both turned out.

I also wanted a wet bar or small kitchen in the space. This way my husband and I could entertain in the space as well.

We already had an extra fridge in the basement so Lisa doctored it up with some gold tape on the handles. I’m obsessed.

The ultimate goal for this basement was to have a place and getaway for the kids to play. They have so many toys and it was time to send them down there! They now have a chalkboard wall, art table, TV to watch movies and their very own closet for toys. It’s so perfect.

Included in this renovation was a bedroom. We had a two car garage and only used one side of it. So I thought let’s turn one garage into a bedroom so we have extra space for guests to stay over.

Lisa nailed the design in this room. It feels light, bright and like a total escape. My favorite piece that she sourced was for the lighting next to the bed – hanging pendants from CB2.

Now I take great pride in having guests stay over in this space and I always make sure they feel welcome and well taken care of with the simple things like cold water next to the bed.

This basement renovation was so worth the wait.  I’m so proud of how the space turned out and love nothing more than entertaining with the kids, my husband and friends in there.

See more details about our basement renovation in features on:
Better Homes & Gardens
Domino Magazine

Photos above by:  David A. Land
Space in photos above styled by:  Charlotte Safavi
Space in photos above designed by: Lisa Hershman of Abaca Interiors

xx, Seri
2 comments
Party conversation
  1. Beth Davidson

    I’m moving this week and we have a formal living room that’s going to sit completely empty for awhile, as we never have any ideas what to do with those. I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one who waits to decorate everything! I love the chalkboard wall here though. The kids must love that. They don’t use the chalk on all the other walls, do they? I think mine might be too young to get the difference.

  2. mack talbott

    love the pops of color! do you know the source for the color block pillow in the living room?

Post your comment

*Required

February 22, 2017

Chef Luke Makes crêpes with Crêpes à la Maison

My favorite part of social media is when people discover Little Miss Party and get in touch to share their excitement towards our business and all that we are doing here. We recently received an email from Jennifer at Crêpes à la Maison who caught wind of Chef Luke’s little cooking show here and asked if she could come in to give him a lesson in making crêpes. Obviously we screamed YES! Please! How fun?!

Jennifer, the cutest, sweetest French gal came over with all the gear required to teach a little one how to make her delicious crêpes. She set up balloons, a menu, toppings to decorate the crêpes and more. She even brought berets for her and Luke to wear while they cook! Could you die from these two?!

Although Luke and her had some language challenges between her heavy French accent and Luke’s extremely fast speaking lip, they got along incredibly well and Luke listened to everything Jennifer said and asked of him.

Jennifer made making crêpes SO easy! And boy were they ever delicious. Jennifer offers crêpes making classes and events. What a great idea for a kids party or even an adults brunch right?!

She even came with a special crêpes making diploma for Luke AND a book about France. TOO CUTE!!

Your mouth is probably watering now and I’m sure you’re dying to try these yourself. So here is Jennifer’s recipe for these delicious crêpes.

And even better…here’s a video of Chef Luke and Jennifer whipping up crêpes together.

Can’t get enough? Watch Chef Luke decorate his crêpes here!

Enjoy!

Video shot by Abby Copleston
Video edited by Maggie Antalek
Get in touch with Jennifer at Crêpes à la Maison

xx, Seri
0 comments
Post your comment

*Required