How To Throw a Game Night Party + Free Printables

by Jillian Leslie on

How To Throw A Game Night Party + Free Printables |

If you're looking for a fun and easy party theme for kids and adults, think about throwing a game night party.

Something about playing physical games, has a unique way of bringing people together. Don't be surprised if the night ends with everyone standing around cheering!

I enjoy hosting game night parties at our house, so I thought I'd share tips on how I do it.

TIP 1 - Get fun games!

I put out a mix of old-school games like Scrabble, Sorry, and Life, and some newer games like Coup, Forbidden Island, Abandon Ship, Castle Panic, Q-bitz, and Quirkle (my favorite of the bunch)!

Tips on Throwing a Game Night Party |

TIP 3 - Snacks, snacks, snacks!

We partnered with CVS's Gold Emblem abound on this post, and they provided the snacks. What makes their snacks so great, are their unique flavors.

Here's what we served:

  • Jalapeno Cheddar Quinoa Puffs -- these have a nice, spicy kick
  • Barbecue Potato Fries -- these bring lots of crunch and smokiness
  • Heavenly Light Popcorn -- salty and satisfying, perfect for kids
  • Blueberry Lemon Almond Crunch -- nice mix of sweet, sour, and crunchy
  • Berries and Nut Clusters -- sweet and salty flavors in big clusters
  • Pistachio and Almond Blend-- high quality pistachios and almonds mixed together
In fact, as part of our game night, we all voted on our favorite Gold Emblem abound snacks. Scroll to the bottom of the post to see which snacks won!

Game Night Party Snacks |

Game Night Party Snacks |

TIP 2 - Keep the games as structured or open-ended as you like

I like to make my game nights fluid, and let people pick the games they play in groups of their choosing. The other way to go is to have a more formal setup, where everyone plays the same game and there's a winner at the end.

I find that if there is a big spread in ages, it works best to let people pick their own games. If there are only a few people at your party, or everyone's around the same age, setting up a tournament can be great fun.

Game Night Party Free Printables |

TIP 4 -- Make it casual

I like to place snacks and drinks out, and let everyone graze. This way people can focus on their games, and still have tasty food to nosh on.

Game Night Party Snacks |

Tips on Throwing a Game Night Party |

Hands down, the favorite game our guests played was Coup. It's a pretty easy card game to learn, but what makes it so engaging, is the bluffing. Are your opponents lying or telling the truth?!

Game Night Party Free Printables |

Tip 5 - Decorate with our free Game Night printables 

To add easy and inexpensive decor to your party, download our free Game Night party printables. Just print them out and decorate!

I used the water bottle labels, cupcake toppers, welcome sign, and tented food cards, but the collection has so many other great items you can see here.


Free Game Night Party Printables |

As part of our tasting contest, I used the printable tented cards so people could taste all the different Gold Emblem treats!

Game Night Party Snacks |

Game Night Party Free Printables |

TIP 6 - Finish off the night with something sweet

I bought cupcakes at the grocery store, printed out some cupcake toppers, attached them to lollipop sticks, and served adorable cupcakes at the end of the night!

Game Night Party Tips and Free Printables |

And now, to reveal the winners of our Gold Emblem tasting contest. In first place... the Heavenly Light Popcorn! I think because your party had lots of kids the popcorn won hands down.

Game Night Party Snacks |

Game Night Party Snacks |

The silver medal went to the Barbecue Potato Fries, and the bronze medal went to the spicy Jalapeno Cheddar Quinoa Puffs (these were popular with the grownups! My personal favorite was the Pistachio Almond Blend, but I was unfortunately outvoted. :(

Having something like the snack tasting contest added to the overall fun of the night, because it got people talking and comparing. Otherwise, I recommend adding a DIY popcorn bar or make-your-own sundae bar to your party. It will give it another touch of fun!

Disclosure: I’m proud to partner with CVS Pharmacy to promote their exclusive Gold Emblem and Gold Emblem abound snack lines. I am being sponsored by CVS Pharmacy for my posts and activities, but all opinions expressed are my own, and all product claims or program details shared should be verified at or with the appropriate manufacturers.

Free Game Night Party Printables

by Jillian Leslie on

Free Game Night Party Printables |

I love hosting game night parties at our house, so I thought this collection of free game night party printables would be fun to give away! Don't you just love the Scrabble design?

I think game night parties are so fun and a perfect way to celebrate in fall. They work for both kids and adults, and you can make the parties as casual or intense as you like. Bring on the competition!

This adorable collection was created by Ana at Love Party Printables and contains everything you need to host an awesome game night party at your house.

There collection includes: a "Game Night Welcome" poster, a "Game Night" banner, party circles, straw flags, water bottle labels, blank tented cards, and favor tags.

Just download the files to your computer, print them out, cut them out, and decorate with them! For inspiration on how I did used them at my party, check out my Game Day Tips post.

Download the free game night party printables here!

Free Game Night Party Printables |

Free Game Night Party Printables | Free Game Night Welcome Sign Printable |

Free Game Night Water Bottle Labels | Free Game Night Printable Straw Flags |

Free Game Night Party Printables |


Free Game Night Party Favor Tags |

Here are some of our favorite games for Game Night at our house!

Lumberjack 1st Birthday and More!

by Jillian Leslie on

My favorite parties this week: a lumberjack 1st birthday, a farmer's market baby shower, a mermaid party, and a donut first birthday |

Lots of great parties were added to our site this week, including a fantastic lumberjack 1st birthday!

My favorite parties this week: the awesome lumberjack birthday party, an adorable "locally grown" farmer's market baby shower, an amazing under the sea mermaid girl birthday party, and a lovely pink and gold donut birthday party for a one year old.

MKKM Designs' Lumberjack First Birthday

My favorite details:

  • The bear poop treats
  • The tree stump cake
  • The s'mores party favors
Lumberjack camping first birthday party |

Sweet Jelly Parties' Locally Grown

My favorite details:

  • The locally grown cupcakes
  • The burlap fruit and vegetable banner
  • The vintage crates and scale
Farmer's market baby shower |

JDL Design and Event Planning's Under The Sea With EMMALEE

My favorite details:

  • The gold mermaid backdrop
  • The beautiful mermaid cake with scales
  • The flowy white table skirt
Under the sea mermaid birthday party |

printsforevents' Our Little Pumpkin First Birthday

My favorite details:

  • The donut cake
  • The "Little Pumpkin" banner
  • The adorable printables
Little pumpkin donut party |

Our first week back to school was a success! It feels good to be on a routine again. Now I'm starting to think about Halloween content for the blog. Wow!




Balloon Flower Garland

by Jillian Leslie on

Balloon Flower Garland |

Balloon Flower Garland

Materials: Flower Balloon Garland |


Create a beautiful balloon garland for a wedding, bridal shower, baby shower or as general party decor. The balloon garland also makes a gorgeous photo prop for a photo booth at a first birthday.

Start by removing the faux flowers and leaves from the plastic stems. Trim off any excess plastic stem.

Bunch of plastic flowers |

There are two ways you can do this. The first method is to slide the flowers onto the curling ribbon.

String slide to the curling ribbon |

String slide to the curling ribbon |

The second method is to use glue dots to attach the flowers to the base of the balloon and ribbon string.

Base of a plastic flower |

I chose to use both methods. I started by sliding one flower up to the base of the balloon using the first method.

Tied a ribbon at the base of the balloon |

Next, I pressed a glue dot to the base of each flower and pressed gently to the base of the balloon as I positioned and attached them.

Pressed a glue dot at the base of the flower |

I then began to attach the flowers down the curling ribbon using glue dots.

Attached glued flowers to the ribbon |

The flowers will act as the balloon weight. The over-sized balloons will hold the weight of the flowers the best. But you can also just attach the flowers to the base of a standard balloon.

Super easy to make balloon garland |

The balloon garland is super easy to create and turns out just beautiful!

Beautiful flower balloon garland |

Beautiful flower balloon garland |


Ombre Yarn Monogram Letter

Yarn Monogram Letter |

Monogram Floral Centerpiece

Monogram Floral Centerpiece |

10 Must-See Alice in Wonderland Cakes

by Jillian Leslie on

10 Must-See Alice in Wonderland Cakes |

We see so many fantastic Alice in Wonderland parties on our site and the cakes are always amazing! Below, we're sharing ten of the best cakes!


1. Nina H's Mad Hatter Tea Party

How fun and whimsical is this upside down Alice cake!

Alice in Wonderland Cake |

2.Bernelo's Alice in Wonderland Party

This is one of the most stylish Alice in Wonderland cakes I've seen. Look at the edible images on the cake.

Alice in Wonderland cake |

3.Maynoris L's Audrianna's Tea Party

Again, what beautiful edible images from the book, and I think the teacup and roses at the top are also edible. Beautiful watch and necklace details!

Alice in Wonderland cake |

4. Mek R's Samantha's Onederland

I love how all the fun characters are represented on this cake.

Alice in Wonderland cake |

5. Party Pieces by Perry's Ariana in Onederland First Birthday

That subtle checkerboard pattern on the first layer of the cake is incredible as are the clock and lock details.

Vintage Alice in Wonderland cake |

6. Sweetly Chic Events and Design's Mad Hatter Tea Party

Great "Eat Me" cake topper on this pretty pastel cake. What a way to set the mood at the party.

Alice in Wonderland cake |

7. Think Happy's Noa in Wonderland

I love the fondant table cloth and the Queen of Hearts detailing, plus the pocket watches are great!

Alice in Wonderland cake |

8. Sweet Bits and Pieces' Alice in Wonderland First Birthday Party

This cake is almost too pretty to eat. The pocket watch chain adds such a great touch, as well as the scalloped first layer.

Tea Party Cake |

9. Dolce Francesca's France in Wonderland

I love that Alice is sitting in the tea cup with the Mad Hatter!

Alice in Wonderland cake |

10. Chakoda Design's ONEderland

Great touch with the Mad Hatter's hat as the top layer of the cake.

Mad Hatter cake |

Be sure to check out all the amazing Alice in Wonderland parties on our site!


7 Alice in Wonderland Party Ideas |

Free Alice in Wonderland Party Printables |

Kitchen Bridal Shower and More!

by Jillian Leslie on

My favorite parties are a kitchen bridal shower, a donut party, a farmer's market party and a neon art party |

This week we have seen lots of great parties, including a gorgeous and glam kitchen bridal shower!

My favorite parties this week are the beautiful bridal shower, an amazing modern donut birthday bash, a fun farmer's market first birthday, and a glow in the dark neon art birthday party! Take a look at each one below...

14 & Hudson/Paula Clemente Woods' Recipe for Love Bridal Shower

My favorite details:

  • The kitchen-themed cookies
  • The mimosa bar
  • The playful ring pops
Kitchen themed bridal shower |

Shaa'ista K's Donut Bash

My favorite details:

  • The mini donuts and chocolate milk
  • The donut cake pops
  • The black and white color scheme
Donut birthday party |

Alison M's Easton's First Birthday Farmers Market Celebration

My favorite details:

  • The adorable party welcome sign
  • Easton's vegetable stand
  • The fruit and veggie box cake
Farmer's market birthday party |

Party Sprinkles' Neon Art Birthday Party

My favorite details:

  • The rainbow paint cake
  • The gorgeous pallette and paint brush cookies
  • The cute creative juices in plastic bottles
Neon glow in the dark art party |

So it's finally here... school. My daughter starts fourth grade on Tuesday. Boy, did this summer fly by. I will miss the lazy days and all that daylight, but I'm ready to get into a routine again. The best part is that I have a kid who is excited to go back to school. That makes it a lot easier.

For those of you with kids going back to school soon, I send you all my best luck! If you're looking for inspiration, check out these back-to-school parties from our site and all our back-to-school blog posts (including free printables).




Succulent Painted Pot DIY

by Jillian Leslie on

Succulent Garden Painted Pot DIY |

Succulents are everywhere this year. They're so on-trend. How about creating a garden for your succulents in a watermelon pot. Not only would this look great for summer but would add a bit of cheer to those dark, winter days. Plus, this succulent painted pot DIY couldn’t be easier to make. You just need six things!

Succulent Painted Pot DIY

Supplies: Directions:

Step 1: Mix together a pearlized pink, red, and white paint to get a pretty watermelon pink shade. Paint the pot with 2-­3 coats of watermelon pink paint, letting the paint dry between each coat.

Watermelon succulent pot |

Watermelon succulent pot |

Step 2: Paint 2-­3 coats of green on the rim of the pot, letting the paint dry between coats.

Watermelon pot |

Step 3: Once the paint has dried overnight, use the black Sharpie or black paint pen to draw watermelon seeds all over the pot.

Succulent Watermelon pot |

Succulent Watermelon pot |

Step 4: Add soil and succulents to the newly painted clay pot!

Watermelon succulent pot |

Doesn't this look beautiful!

Succulent Garden Painted Pot DIY

Succulent Garden Painted Pot DIY |

How easy is our succulent painted pot DIY?! I plan to make a handful of these beauties! You could also plant an aloe vera plant with the succulents for a little more variety.

Succulent Garden Painted Pot DIY |

This DIY was created by our craft and food contributor, Shauna at Ella and Annie Magazine! To see more of Shauna's work, check out Ella and Annie Magazine and visit them on FacebookTwitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.


Watermelon Cupcakes |

Geometric Flower Pots |

14 Must-See Superhero Party Ideas

by Jillian Leslie on

14 Must-See Superhero Party Ideas | Today we're sharing fourteen fantastic superhero party ideas for your amazing birthday parties!

1. Superhero dessert table

How incredible is this dessert table with all your favorite superheroes represented. I love the framed images as the backdrop.

Superhero dessert table |

2. Free superhero party printables

We've got everything you need to throw an awesome superhero party. The collection has invitations, cupcake toppers, cupcake wrappers, a Happy Birthday banner, and more! Just download the files, cut them out, and decorate!

Free superhero party printables |

3. Superhero Cupcakes

Just purchase these edible toppers and add them to your homemade cupcakes! What a great way to add some flair to your party!

Superhero cupcakes |

4. City backdrop

Covering cardboard boxes with colored paper and stickers makes them look like a cityscape. Great hack for a dessert table backdrop.

City backdrop |

5. Cake pops

Cake pop superheroes, just attach goggles and capes!

Superhero cake pops |

6. Superhero cake

Wow, what a great cake with my three favorite superheroes!

Superhero cake |

7. Superhero masks

This is a perfect idea for party favors. Give your little guests masks and watch them transform at your party!

Superhero masks |

8. Superhero party games

Add a photo booth, and some games where you get to knock down bricks and cans and you've got a great way to entertain your little superheroes.

Superhero party games |

9. Captain America food idea

How fun is this Captain America platter. It's just strawberries, cherries, blueberries, marshmallows and a white yogurt dip!

Captain America food idea |

10. Superhero gloves

Here's another great party favor item.

Superhero gloves |

11. Kids' table

Here's a fun way to DIY your kids' party superhero table. Just add cutouts to the chairs, and add masks and Batman symbols to the plates.

Superhero party table |

12. Superhero lollipops

What a clever way to dress up some lollipops. Add glasses and capes and stick them in a block of styrofoam.

Superhero lollipops |

13. Superhero capes

A superhero birthday boy or girl needs a cape. Check out this aweosme one!

Superhero capes |

14. Party favors

Add superhero symbols to colored take out boxes and you've got an easy themed party favor.

Superhero party favors |

For more inspiration, check out all the amazing superhero parties on Catch My Party, and all our superhero party supplies.


Toy Soldiers Party and More!

by Jillian Leslie on

My favorite parties this week are a rainbow unicorn party, a toy soldiers party, a bumblebee shower, and an Olympics party |

If you only see one party, you must see the toy soldiers party I'm featuring! It's so modern and stylish!

My favorite parties this week are the awesome toy soldier army military party, a pretty pastel rainbow unicorn party, a beautiful bumblebee baby shower, and an amazing Olympics party!

Tania's Toy Soldier Army Party

My favorite details:

  • The camouflage cake
  • The dog tags
  • The toy soldier chocolates
Army military birthday party |

Tiffany H's Lily's Iridescent Unicorn Party

My favorite details:

  • The beautiful flower backdrop
  • The pastel ruffle cake
  • The sparkly gold unicorn horns
Rainbow unicorn birthday party |

Sweet Jelly Parties' Bee Loved Baby Shower

My favorite details:

  • The glass jars filled with cereal
  • The cute donut stacks with heart toppers
  • The rustic bee details and honey dippers
Bumblebee baby shower |

Brittany S' Olympics Party

My favorite details:

  • The gorgeous cake with the Olympic ring Oreo pops
  • The Oreo cookie gold medals
  • The hanging Olympic rings
Olympics birthday party |

I just got back from the BlogHer Conference in LA. I had a really good time, hung out with old friends, and met new ones. I also got to hear Kim Kardashian, Sarah Michelle Gellar, and Mayim Bialik speak -- how cool was that!

If you're looking for a fun conference, I recommend attending BlogHer next year. I'll be at BlogHer Food16 in October if you want to come!



Free Back-To-School Owl Printables

by Jillian Leslie on

Free Back-To-School Owl Printables |

Now that summer is winding down, we're sharing these adorable free back-to-school owl printables designed for us by

I'm a big believer in celebrating transitions. Going back to school is an important one for our kids. Lots of children find going back to school stressful. I know I do. Just figuring out what to pack for lunch gives me a headache. So my advice is to turn it into a celebration, and host a back-to-school party. This is what I do for my daughter.

I print out the printables to make it feel like a special occasion. Then I put out a few item to eat, like mini donuts, grapes, cheese, and crackers. I don't go crazy. I just want her to know something new and exciting is coming! Another idea is to celebrate over breakfast the morning of school or the day before. It's just a way to let your kids know you're there for them.

**** With this collection, the extra surprise is that the food labels are completely editable if you use Adobe Acrobat!! You can have them say anything you'd like! ****

This back-to-school owl collection has everything you'll need to host an awesome party: a welcome sign, cupcake toppers/favor tags, food labels, water bottle labels, straw flags, cupcake wrappers, and a "Back to School" banner.

Download the Free Back-To-School Owl Printables Here!

Free Back-To-School Owl Printables |

Here are the individual files...

Free Back-To-School Owl Printables - Welcome Sign |


Free Back-To-School Owl Printables - Welcome Sign |

Free Back-To-School Owl Printables - Welcome Sign |

Free Back-To-School Owl - Back To School Banner |

Free Back-To-School Owl - Water Bottle Labels |

Free Back-To-School Owl - Tented Cards |

Free Back-To-School Owl -Cupcake Wrappers |

Free Back-To-School Owl Printables |

And here are some inspirations for styling...

DSC_0748 copy





DSC_0770 copy DSC_0763 copy

DSC_0743 copy DSC_0750 copy

DSC_0746 copy

Thanks for the sweet collection, Party and Printables!

To learn more about them, please visit their website, and on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.

And for more back-to-school inspiration, check out all our amazing back-to-school parties on our site, our back-to-school party supplies and gifts, and all our collections of free back-to-school printables.

Here's another back-to-school post you might like!

10 Must Have Back-To-School Party Ideas |