How A Flash Drive Improved My Marriage

by Jillian Leslie on

How A Flash Drive Improved My Marriage | CatchMyParty.com

I take a ton of photos and videos with my iPhone. This is the feature I love most about my phone. And it's the feature I like least. I only have 16GB of storage, and that's the problem.

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My photos and videos have to be constantly downloaded. I can't tell you the number of times I've tried to capture a moment (like my daughter's hip hop recital), and I get the message that there's no more space!

While this is a big problem for me, it's an even bigger problem for my husband, David, because he's the one who actually deals with it. He's the one who has to clean up my phone -- removing photos, podcasts, apps, music, etc. -- to make room.

So when I told David SanDisk was sending me a SANDISK IXPAND FLASH ™ DRIVE to test out, and his eyes lit up, I knew this was going to be a good thing for both of us.

And it was. I've been able to stop worrying about my storage problem, and so has David. A stress creator in our lives is now gone!

So here's my SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive review...

I got the flash drive and immediately with the Lightning connector, plugged it into my phone. Then, without doing anything, it asked me to download the SanDisk app.

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Next, with the push of a button, I was able to download all my photos and delete them off my phone. I also set it up to sync with my phone so whenever I plug it in, it immediately starts copying my photos to the drive.

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It's compact, fits perfect in my iPhone with the case on, and the photos download fast.

The first time I used it for real was last week on vacation. We were in Sonoma, and yes, I took a ton of photos and videos. But because I kept my flash drive in my purse, I was able to download my photos on the spot. I never ran out of space and I could handle it completely on my own.

Here are a few photos of my trip to Sonoma. It really is as beautiful as the say, and the wine is incredible!

Sonoma Valley | CatchMyParty.com

Sonoma valley wine tasting | CatchMyParty.com

Once my photos were on the iXpand, I was able to easily download them to my computer with the USB 3.0 port.

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To get a little technical, the SanDisk has 128GB of flash drive storage, which is huge. It's more space than I would ever know what to do with. I could easily download tons of movies on it.

And it's also a good value. I'd been contemplating buying a new phone with more storage, but to buy an iPhone with 128GB of storage vs. 16GB would cost an extra $300.

In comparison, you can purchase the SanDisk iXpand for $79.99 using this $50 off coupon. (Coupon expires on August 31st.)

And here's another helpful feature. When I record video, I can record it directly onto the iXpand, so I never have to worry about missing another one of my daughter's hip hop performances.

I've started carrying my flash drive around with me everywhere I go. It's like having a little peace of mind with me at all times, and who wouldn't want a little peace of mind in their purse? :)

Western Digital Technologies, Inc. is the seller of record and licensee in the Americas of SanDisk® products.

*1 GB=1,000,000,000 bytes. Actual user storage less.

SanDisk is a trademark of Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates, registered in the U.S. and other countries. iXpand is a trademark of Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone and Lightning are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries. Other brand names mentioned herein are for identification purposes only and may be the trademark(s) of their respective holder(s).

Western Digital Technologies, Inc. is the seller of record and licensee in the Americas of SanDisk® products.

Olympic Games Oatmeal M&M Cookies

by Jillian Leslie on

Olympic Games Oatmeal M&M Cookies | CatchMyParty.com

The Rio 2016 Olympic Games are right around the corner, so if you are planning a viewing party for your friends and family, why not serve up these easy Olympic Games oatmeal M&M cookies!

Bounty, an official sponsor of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, asked me to come up with a party recipe for the occasion. Since cookies are an easy food to serve at parties, especially ones where people are focused on the TV, I made sure my cookies were delicious, Olympic Games-themed, and fun!

But the best part of making them was when I saw my daughter's face light up when I asked her to sort the M&Ms. Can you think of a better job for a nine-year-old?! The only color we didn't use was orange, so guess where those M&Ms went?

Olympic Games Oatmeal M&M Cookies | CatchMyParty.com

Olympic Games Oatmeal M&M Cookies

Makes: 20 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups quick or old-fashioned rolled oats, uncooked
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 package of M&Ms
Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350F

In a large mixing bowl, add the butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla. Mix on high for about 2 minutes.

In a second mixing bowl, add the oats, flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk until combined.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet, about 1/3 at a time, mixing on low until combined.

The dough comes together very easily. You can make it in about 10 minutes.

Oatmeal M&M Olympic Games Cookie Dough | CatchMyParty.com

Roll pieces of dough into small balls and flatten with your hands.

Here's where my trusty Bounty paper towels come in. Your hands will be sticky and covered in dough, so have a wet piece of Bounty nearby for wiping.

Next, put your cookies in the oven for 7-9 minutes. (When my cookies go in the oven, I use Bounty to wipe up my countertops. It's 2X more absorbent, so it is my cleanup workhorse.)

Oatmeal M&M Olympic Games Cookie Dough | CatchMyParty.com

Take the cookies out of the oven just when they're close to done but still soft, and with your M&Ms nearby, gently push the M&Ms onto the cookies in a ring. I used 8 M&Ms per cookie.

You want to work while the cookies are hot so the M&Ms will stick. If they don't all stick, use a little white decorating gel to "glue" them in place.

Olympic Games Oatmeal M&M Cookies | CatchMyParty.com

Because of all the M&Ms in the cookies, I was able to reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe. I felt good about that. And the real judge in the family, my daughter, thought they were delicious!

Olympic Games Oatmeal M&M Cookies | CatchMyParty.com

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One last cool fact... Bounty has teamed up with four-time Olympic Gold Medal sprinter, Allyson Felix, for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

I love her and can't wait to watch her compete. She's so lightning fast! Go Allyson!

Olympic Games Bounty | CatchMyParty.com

This post is sponsored by Bounty, but all opinions and text are mine. And I really do love Bounty and use their paper towels and paper napkins in my house every day!

Olympic Games Bounty | CatchMyParty.com

Olympic Games Posts You Might Like:

Olympic Games Sprinkle Donuts

Olympic Games Sprinkle Donuts | CatchMyParty.com

Free Go Team USA Olympic Games Printables

Free Olympic Games Party Printables | CatchMyParty.com

 

 

14 Must-See Pokemon Go Party Ideas

by Jillian Leslie on

14 Must-See Pokemon Go Party Ideas | Catchmyparty.com

Pokemon Go is such a phenomenon! My daughter and husband play it a lot, and for the last week that was all they've been talking about. Are your families as obsessed?

I'm expecting a slew of Pokemon Go birthday parties showing up on our site very soon. So to help you plan yours, check out these 14 awesome Pokemon Go party ideas!

10 POKEMON GO PARTY IDEAS

1. Pokemon Party Printables

What adorable Pokemon party printables This set comes with everything you'll need to decorate your Pokemon party in style!

Pokemon Party Ideas - Dessert Table | CatchMyParty.com

 

2. Pin the Tail on Pikachu

A printout of Picachu and a missing tale. Here's a perfect game for your party!

Pin the tail on Pikachu | Catchmyparty.com

3. Pokeball Candy Bowl

I'm loving this DIY Pokeball themed candy bowl and the Pokeball cake pops in the background.

Pokeball candy container | Catchmyparty.com

4. Pikachu Party Cake

Purchase this cake topper and you've got all the decoration you need for your Pokemon Go cake!

Pikachu cake topper | Catchmyparty.com

5. Pikachu Peep Pops

I think this is such a clever way to make Pikachu Peep pops!

Pokemon Go Party Ideas - Pikachu Marshmallow Pops | Catchmyparty.com

6. Pokeball Snack Tray

Take a red snack tray, cover one side in white tape, add some black detailing, and you're there.

Pokemon Go Party Ideas - Pokemon snacks | Catchmyparty.com

7. Pokeball Trainer Hats

Homemade Pokeball trainer hats would make great party favors.

Party Favor Pokeball Trainer Hat | CatchMyParty.com

8. Marshmallow Pokeballs

Red candy melts, chocolate candy melts, and white chocolate chips... how clever are these?

Marshmallow pokeballs | Catchmyparty.com

9. Party Invitations

How adorable are these Pikachu invitations!

Pokemon Birthday Party Invitations | CatchMyParty.com

10. Pokemon Masks

Printable Pokemon masks to give out to your guests.

Pokemon Masks | CatchMyParty.com

11. Pokeball Cupcakes

Cupcakes topped with red, white, and black fondant.

Pokeball cupcakes | Catchmyparty.com

12. Pokemon Favor Tags

Here's how to give your party favors a Pokemon touch.

Pokemon Party Favor Tags | CatchMyParty.com

13. Pokemon Favor Boxes

Favor boxes with Pikachu!

Pokemon Party Favor Boxes | CatchMyParty

14. Pokemon Banner

Purchase this "Happy Birthday" banner and get your guests into the Pokemon spirit!

Pokemon Happy Birthday Banner | CatchMyParty.com

Be sure to check out all of these Pokemon party ideas on our site!

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Beauty and the Beast Party and More!

by Jillian Leslie on

My favorite parties this week are a Beauty and the Beast party, a floral tea party, a camping party, and a flamingo party | Catchmyparty.com

Thanks for adding such gorgeous parties to our site this week. Don't miss the stunning Beauty and the Beast party I'm featuring. One word... Wow!

My favorite parties this week are a beautiful Beauty and the Beast girl birthday party, a lovely outdoor floral tea party, an adventurous backyard camping party, and a tropical pineapple and flamingo party!

Iva T's Ivana's 5th Birthday

My favorite details:

  • The beautiful dessert table with Belle and the Beast in the backdrop
  • The incredible Beauty and the Beast cookies
  • The Belle favor bags
Beauty and the Beast Belle birthday | Catchmyparty.com

Cassie B's Lavender's Floral Tea Party

My favorite details:

  • Lavender's flower crown
  • The pretty fabric bunting
  • The beautiful cake with the tea cup on top
Floral tea party birthday party | Catchmyparty.com

Emily B's Backyard Camping Celebration

My favorite details:

  • The cute party signs
  • The burlap details
  • The upcycled decor
Backyard campout with s'mores | Catchmyparty.com

Tania's Let's Flamingle! Birthday Bash

My favorite details:

  • The delightful printables
  • The paper rosette flower backdrop
  • The two flamingos cake topper
Tropical flamingo pineapple birthday party | Catchmyparty.com

We just got back from Las Vegas. Even though it was 107 degrees, I love Las Vegas in the summer. We stayed at the Wynn, which felt so glam, and because it's summer, was so inexpensive! We spent most of our days indoors (in the malls, at the buffet, or watching movies in our room), then we'd head to the pool around 4pm.  I also took my daughter, Lainey, to her first concert. We saw Meghan Trainor, which was awesome, and I have one word for you... "No!" (Now I can't get that song out of my head.)

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Mod Sea Glass Candlesticks

by Jillian Leslie on

Mod Sea Glass Candlesticks | CatchMyParty.com

This was such a fun post to do. I love crafting in the summer when I can be outside. I also love modern, colorful details.

So when Krylon asked me to do a project that showcased their KRYLON® SEA GLASS PAINT, I knew I wanted to make mod sea glass candlesticks for my mantle. Our living room is mostly neutral, so my goal was to bring a pop-up of color and a casual playfulness to the room.

That's why when I went to Lowe's to shop for colors, I chose Cornflower (blue) and Sea Foam (green), two of my favorites.

And because I wanted a smooth, translucent sea glass look, I only sprayed each candlestick with one coat of paint. It could not have been simpler.

Mod Sea Glass Candlesticks

Supplies:

Directions:

First, I cleaned my candlesticks well using dish soap and water. I wanted to make sure there was no dirt or oil on my candlesticks so the paint would spread evenly.

Mod Sea Glass Candlesticks CatchMyParty.com

Using colored tape, I carefully taped two stripes around the necks of the candlesticks. I wanted to show lots of color but have some modern details.

Sea Glass Paint | CatchMyParty.com

I placed my candlesticks on a piece of butcher-block paper outside in a well-ventilated area. The weather was warm but not too hot, and the humidity was low.

Then, holding the can about 12 inches from the candlesticks, I sprayed each candlestick in a big sweeping motion. I made sure to move quickly because I didn't want the paint to drip.

My goal was to make them look very translucent -- like real sea glass -- so I used only one coat of paint on each.

I let them dry for a few hours, and...

Sea Glass Paint | CatchMyParty.com

Voila! I love how they turned out. Don't they look great on my mantle?

Mod Sea Glass Candlesticks CatchMyParty.com

Mod Sea Glass Candlesticks CatchMyParty.com

If you want to add smooth, translucent color to any clear glass piece you have in your house, try  KRYLON® SEA GLASS PAINT. You will beautifully and easily turn something ordinary into a statement piece.

For more inspiration, here are some other other inspiring ideas from Krylon. Just please don't use it on glass items that will touch food.

Take everyday items from ordinary to extraordinary! Krylon can give your everyday objects a new life with an assortment of colors, finishes, and textures. For more information, visit our website, follow us on Pinterest, or like us on Facebook.

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Free Emoji Party Printables

by Jillian Leslie on

Free Emoji Party Printables | CatchMyParty.com

Emoji parties are getting very popular on our site, especially among teen girls. I'm not even a teen girl and I use emojis daily in emails, on Instagram, and on Snapchat!

They're fun and expressive and very of-the-moment. I'm predicting this is just the beginning of a big party trend.

So I'm super excited to be giving away these free emoji party printables for you to use at your own emoji parties!

The collection includes: party invitations, cupcake toppers, a "Happy Birthday" banner, a welcome sign, and tented cards.

Download the free emoji party printables here!

You can see the individual files here...

Free Emoji Party Printable Invitations | CatchMyParty.com

Free Emoji Party Printable Cupcake Toppers | CatchMyParty.com

Free Emoji Party Printable Welcome Sign | CatchMyParty.com

 

Free Emoji Party Printable Happy Birthday Banner | CatchMyParty.com

Free Emoji Party Printable Happy Birthday Banner | CatchMyParty.com

Free Emoji Party Printable Tented Cards | CatchMyParty.com

Free Emoji Party Printable Tented Card | CatchMyParty.com

And make sure to download our free Emoji party bingo set for a fun activity at your party!

Free Printable Emoji Bingo Cards | CatchMyParty.com

 

Lilly Pulitzer Bridal Shower and More!

by Jillian Leslie on

My favorite parties are a Lilly Pulitzer bridal shower, a cowgirl summer party, a white daisy party, and a country fair pinwheel party

There were lots of amazing parties added to our site this week, including an incredibly beautiful Lilly Pulitzer bridal shower!

My favorite parties this week are the stylish Lilly Pulitzer bridal lunch, a summertime shabby chic cowgirl party, a gorgeous white daisy birthday party, and a pretty country fair party with pinwheels!

Amy S' Lilly Pulitzer-Inspired Bridal Luncheon

My favorite details:

  • The Lilly Pulitzer dress cookies
  • The flamingo cake pops
  • All the pineapple details!
Lilly Pulitzer flamingo party | Catchmyparty.com

Annaliese J's Howdy Summer Girls' Night Out!

My favorite details:

  • The vintage furniture details and burlap
  • The adorable kids' table
  • The cowgirl cookies
Girl's Night Out Cowgirl Party | Catchmyparty.com

Silviya Schimenti's Elizabeth's White Daisy Birthday Party

My favorite details:

  • The birthday girl's white daisy dress
  • The beautiful yellow, green, and white cake
  • The daisy ring cookies!
White daisy girl birthday party | Catchmyparty.com

Lucia P's A Day at the Country Fair

My favorite details:

  • The pinwheel cookies
  • The vintage lemonade stand
  • The pastel cupcakes
Country fair pinwheel birthday party | Catchmyparty.com

We just got back from two days in Sonoma. One of the benefits of living in the Bay Area is that we can head up to wine country for great food and great wine!

We got to tour the hills of the Gundlach Bundschu winery driving in one of these!

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Yes, we got to taste wine during the drive (and no, we weren't driving) :)!

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The wineries we toured were Gundlach Bundschu, Patz & Hall, Ravenswood, and Schug. All had delicious Chardonnays and Pinots. What's your favorite Sonoma winery?

 

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Skinny Meatball Recipe

by Jillian Leslie on

Skinny Meatball Recipe With Turkey | CatchMyParty.com

With summer entertaining in full swing, how about trying this delicious skinny meatball recipe to serve up easy turkey meatballs to your guests. These are great for kids, too.

Baking them in the oven keeps the turkey meat moist, and you avoid drying them out by over-cooking in a crock pot.

The meatballs will take on the flavor of the BBQ sauce you serve them with. I love using a sweet and tad bit spicy BBQ sauce.

Skinny Meatball Recipe

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • ½ sweet onion chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¾ cup breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup crushed pineapple
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • Barbecue sauce
  • Toothpicks
Skinny Meatballs Ingredients | CatchMyParty.com

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350℉.

Toss onion and garlic with 1-2 teaspoons olive oil. Saute in a pan until onions are translucent. Combine ground turkey, onions, garlic, egg, bread crumbs, pineapple, salt and pepper.

Combined all ingredients | CatchMyParty.cpm

I like to use a potato masher to combine all my ingredients, but you can also use your hands.

Used potato masher to combine all ingredients | CatchMyParty.com

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a tablespoon, scoop the meatballs and roll them into small balls.

Scooped and rolled meatballs | CatchMyParty.com

Place meatballs on the baking sheet and bake for 15-18 minutes until golden.

Scooped and rolled meatballs | CatchMyParty.com

Place cooked meatballs in a bowl and toss in barbecue sauce. Keep meatballs warm in a small crock pot on low.

Meatballs tossed in barbecue sauce | CatchMyParty.com

Serve each meatball on a platter with toothpicks!

Skinny Meatball Recipe | CatchMyParty.com

Delicious skinny meatballs on a toothpick | CatchMyParty.com

This delicious summer recipe 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.

Here another party recipe you might like!

 

Blueberry Mojito Recipe | CatchMyParty.com

For more party inspiration, check out all our summer parties on our site and our free summer party printables.

Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream Bowls

by Jillian Leslie on

Ice Cream Cookie Bowls | CatchMyParty.com

Here is a delicious and easy-to-make summer treat for summer. Just bake some cookie bowls using the back of a cupcake tin, and serve mini scoops of ice cream in them! Here we used chocolate cookies, but you can try any type of cookie you like!

Scooped Ice Cream to the cookie bowl | CatchMyParty.com

Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream Bowls

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup, salted butter
  • 1 1⁄4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1⁄2 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 1⁄4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Ice cream
  • Sprinkles
Directions:

Preheat oven to 350. Take a muffin pan and turn it upside down. Cover every other muffin cup with foil. The foil makes for easy removal of the cookie bowls. Lightly spray oil on each piece of foil.

Cookie Ice Cream Molder | CatchMyParty.com

In a medium bowl combine salted butter (at room temperature, do not melt), sugar, 2 eggs and vanilla. Mix thoroughly.

Add cocoa powder and mix. Add baking powder and flour. Mix to combine.

Chill dough for at least an hour.

Place dough between two pieces of parchment paper. Roll out dough.

Cookie Ice Cream Dough| CatchMyParty.com

Using a circle cookie cutter, slightly larger than the base of the muffin pan, cut out circles. The colder the dough, the easier it will be to work with.

Cut rounded dough | CatchMyParty.com

Mold each circle on top of the foil covered muffin cups. Bake for 10-­12 minutes until the cookie bowls are fully cooked. Cool completely before peeling foil from the cookie bowl.

Draped cut dough to the mold | CatchMyParty.com

Cool completely before peeling foil from the cookie bowl. Serve with a scoop of ice cream and all you favorite ice cream sundae toppings!

Sprinkled ice cream in the cookie bowl | CatchMyParty.com

Wouldn't your kids just love these!!

Delicious cookie ice cream| CatchMyParty.com

This delicious summer recipe 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.

Here are two other desserts that are perfect for summer!

Mini Funfetti Cheesecake | CatchMyParty.com

BBQ Grill Cookies | CatchMyParty.com

And for more inspiration check out all the fantastic summer parties on our site and our free summer printables.

Woodland Baby Shower and More!

by Jillian Leslie on

My favorite parties are a woodland baby shower, a back to school party, a stylish fashion party, and a French Paris party | Catchmyparty.com

Happy mid-July! It's hot here today in Palo Alto but we braved it and walked to our neighborhood art show. I shared a few snaps on Snapchat if you're interested. You can follow me at catchmyparty. Btw, I'm really enjoying Snapchat! Are you on it yet?

Lots of great parties were added to our site this week, including a woodland baby shower you will love! Check out the toadstool cupcakes with white chocolate chips!

My favorite parties this week are the amazing woodland themed baby shower, a back to school party (it's coming soon), a stunning and stylish Louis Vuitton fashion party with a must-see cake, and a gorgeous Parisian birthday party!

Krown Kreations & Celebrations' Over The River Baby Shower

My favorite details:

  • The woodland photo booth backdrop and props
  • The toadstool cupcakes
  • The gorgeous printables
Woodland themed baby shower party | Catchmyparty.com

Mint Event Design's Back to School Party

My favorite details:

  • The Scrabble letter displays
  • The apple cupcake toppers
  • The vintage details on the "back to school" dessert table
Back to school outdoor party | Catchmyparty.com

Paula S' Fashion Birthday Party

My favorite details:

  • The Louis Vuitton cake!
  • The pink nail polish chocolate truffles
  • The edible Chanel sugar shoes!
Fashion stylish birthday party | Catchmyparty.com

The Tru Happiness' They dream in perfect french. Je t'aime Paris!

My favorite details:

  • The carousel cake
  • The macaron towers
  • The incredible party set design
French Paris Laduree party | Catchmyparty.com

We're heading to Sonoma for a small get-away. It's so breathtaking there and the food and wine are incredible! I'm very excited to go. I'll be sharing my trip on Snapchat. :)