Four for the Fourth

The 4th of July has always been a big day in our family. It’s my favorite holiday and it also happens to be my mom’s birthday! We like to joke that the entire country is shooting off fireworks for her. 🙂 So, in honor of the upcoming weekend of celebration, I thought I’d do a patriotic post with a few fun and easy ways to add some 4th of July flair to your party, BBQ, etc.four ideas

The idea here is that the following four ideas are things that you can do in under $4 and under 4 minutes each… are you getting the theme here? Well, let’s get started so that you can start trimming your house and table with 4th of July fun!

Idea #1: Add red, “white”, and blue ice cubes to any drink! This one is super easy- all I did was grabbed an empty ice cube tray, chopped up some berries, put a bit of strawberry and a few blueberries in each, filled it with water, and stuck it in the freezer like normal ice cubes.patriotic ice cubes

All of this took me under five minutes, so you can definitely do it in four to keep with the theme. 🙂 I put two blueberries in each cube and used about two strawberries in total to fill all of the tray. As you can see, it’s a lot of bang for your buck (and your effort).fourth 016 fourth 015Just look how festive they make a simple glass of lemonade or water! Plus, when the ice cubes melt, there’s a sweet treat leftover to enjoy with your drink! Oh, and here’s a bonus idea: Grab those festive striped straws (I always get them from Michaels) and put them out for guests to really get into the red, white, and blue spirit!fourth 021They come in all sorts of colors and are a foolproof and EASY way to add to your party decor. The best part? All you have to do is put them out (definitely fits the “under 4 minutes” qualification)!fourth 018

Idea #2: Make your own table fireworks. Grab a vase and fill it with any glittery, stick-like thing you can find. I used a white ceramic pitcher, so you can definitely get creative and hunt around your house for other interesting items to fill for your table. For ours, I used these twirly sticks from the Dollar Tree, but it would be just as cool and festive if you added some sparklers to the mix! fourth 011fourth 012

Idea #3: You’re a star. Literally. Let your guests be the stars of your party as you incorporate this patriotic element into your decor.starsTo get the look, I created a cardboard template of a star, traced it onto scrapbook paper (one for each guest), and cut it out. I ended up adding a thick black line of Sharpie to make each star pop just a bit more. After that, just add the name of a guest to each star and you have yourself a quick and easy (and oh-so-patriotic) place card.fourth 022 fourth 013fourth 029

Idea #4: Label those drinks. Find a bunch of red, white, and blue trinkets to attach to rubber bands for your guests’ drinking pleasure. This will help them identify their drink and be able to do so throughout the night as well. fourth 025For this look, I grabbed a few packs of red, white, and blue 3D stickers from Michaels (thank you dollar bin) and stuck them to white rubber bands for each glass.

fourth 002This made for a classy patriotic, but not too redwhiteandblue-in-your-face look.

fourth 005fourth 026So that wraps up our four (ideas) for the fourth (of July) for four (dollars or less) in four (minutes or less). I know, that’s a lot of fours. Let me unscramble your mind with a few more pictures of how everything came together in the end. I’d say we’re all set to party it up Uncle Sam style…fourth 028 fourth 027 fourth 010 fourth 003What’s happening at your house this 4th of July? Any red, white, and blue making an appearance on your table? Got your sparklers and fireworks all ready to go? Ooo, I can’t wait! Happy “Birthday” USA (and mom!)


PS. As you can see, we’re loving the additional feature of adding another “wing” to the table for serving/seating purposes. To learn more about the table we purchased, click here. If you’re lingering on those clean-lined, black chairs, find out more here. And if teal is your jam and those cushions are calling your name, you might like this post. Happy reading!


It’s Auction Day!

First of all, if you are visiting over from Pinterior Designer, WELCOME! Glad to have you! Feel free to stick around for awhile… take your shoes off and relax, even. 🙂 Oh, the Fun of It readers- remember that road trip we talked about last month? Well, it’s here! Hop on over to Pinterior Designer to read “10 Questions with Oh, the Fun of It”! Thanks again for having us, Chelsea!

Ok, onward with all of the Auction-y details…

Every year, we (the Youth Ministry Team) hold an Auction to raise money to send a group of High School students on Mission Trip over the summer. This year is different than any other year, though. THIS year, we’ve added a dinner. Woah. It is going to be a blast (although we are frantically running around, putting the finishing touches on things!) and we are thrilled to partner with some local restaurants who have committed to donating food for the event. The countdown is on!

Yes, yes, you say- but what does this have to do with home decor and paint and stuff? Nothing. But we are throwing a party and with every party comes decorations, so you get the backstage pass to some of the elements that are making our event, well, a party! Here we go:

Decoration #1: A Welcoming Sign. Remember the map in our Spare Bedroom?lamps 018 Well, it’s attached to a cork board, because our initial thought was to have some sort of backing that would allow us to stick push pins into all of the places we’ve been. We have actually decided to take the map down for good (there’s a mini house update for you) in exchange for something else (more on that to come!), so our cork board is a free agent! Here he is before/during his big make-over:

auction 040 auction 039

And after? Well, let’s just say… he’s lookin’ pretty dapper for the big event:auction 041 auction 046

To get the look, I just flipped the whole board over, sprayed the backing with a few coats of chalkboard paint, and went chalk-crazy. The end result? A stylish and welcoming menu board, giving our guests a taste of what’s to come later in the evening. Pun intended. I’m thrilled with the way it turned out because I didn’t have to sacrifice an inch of cork space to make room for the chalk board. Lesson Learned: Next time you’re in the market for something new, see if an item that you already own can do some multitasking!

Decoration #2: A Charming Table Setting. Our theme is “a night on the town”- we want guests to feel like they are enjoying a warm, spring evening, eating outside at one of our local restaurants on the main strip in town. The goal: simple, yet beautiful. auction 033To get the look, we just layered a few colors and textures to create one cohesive piece. The base is a plain white plastic table cloth (Party City) and to that we added a large square of cut burlap (Joann Fabrics), followed by a smaller square of patterned wrapping paper (dollar bin in Michaels).auction 027We added another dash of color in the form of a pretty Begonia (Produce Junction), and topped it all off with five baby food jars wrapped in twine (left over from our wedding). The jars will later be filled with battery operated votives (Dollar Tree) that look like real candles!auction 028 auction 030The total cost for this table setting is less than $5 and the impact is pretty grand, especially when you have a whole bunch of them in a room. Oh, and I almost forgot about the place settings! We decided to skip the formal settings (because we figured that by the time everyone found a seat they wanted, it would all be messed up anyway) and left bundles of silverware tied in ribbon and twine and a stack of napkins, plates, and cups at each table. The end result is simply charming. A formal version of a picnic, if you 031One table on its own is lovely, but let’s take a shot of a room-full… just for kicks. 🙂auction 032Decoration #3:Our Team Wall. auction 035We did this for the first time last year and it was a smashing success. The church has been doing this Auction for the youth since long before I began working here. Auction night is always a bit crazy and there is a lot of running around, so guests do not really get to interact with and get to know students attending the trip. We wanted a way for church members and Auction supporters to get to “meet” the students they were so willingly supporting. And thus, the Misison Trip Team Wall was born- it is essentially a map of the US (with our trip destination highlighted in some way) and a picture of each team member and their name surrounding it. auction 034Last year, the Team Wall created so much buzz that we knew we had to bring it back. In the end, we want those supporting us to be able to at least be able to put a face to a 036

So there you have it- a few of the details that are helping to make the night special and oh-so-enjoyable. Here’s to a great night of food, fellowship, and fun!

Party on, people. 🙂