Posts Tagged ‘Summer Party’

Backyard Beach Party on a Budget


Melissa Newell from My Party Passion, is back with her first post of the summer on how to throw a budget backyard beach party!

Hello everyone – It’s summertime here in NY and we are gearing up for some nice warm weather. Today I am sharing some tips and tricks, on a budget of course, to throwing your own backyard beach party!

When our son turned seven, he wanted a Beach Party. My first thought was how am I going to turn our backyard into a beach theme? Well, if you know me, you know my first thought is BUDGET!

Now this party was more (money) that I original wanted to spend, however, there are a ton of “budget” friendly ideas that you can easily duplicate at home.



Centerpiece – I used a recycled large plastic pretzel container, filled it with water, and added blue food coloring. I slapped on a pair of dollar store goggles (you might already have some) and I added a hat from the dollar store. This made a big impact and all were talking about it!

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Cake Stands -- Again, off to the dollar store. I bought 6 of the beach themed sand sifters and hot glued them to a tin can that I had put colored duct tape on (but any craft paper would do). These were so cute in displaying our beach themed cookies.

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Beach Balls -- One of the biggest bangs for the buck, hanging beach balls over the goodie bag table caught everyone’s eye. It was so easy and affordable.

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Sandwiches – Using the Pepperidge Farm goldfish bread you can put tuna or chicken salad on them. I did some with PB&J too.

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Corn Dogs – When I think of the boardwalk or the beach, I go to corndogs in my head. I bought mine in the frozen section, heated them up, and stuck them dog side up in a cute display that I made with wrapping paper and a cardboard box. They were snatched up in 10 mins flat!

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Snack Shack -- If you ask any of the children at the party what they loved the most, most would say “shoveling” their own snacks. Again, using new dollar store buckets with shovels,I put snacks in them, tipped them and the kids were able to help themselves at their leisure! The Snack Shack was just for them. I found sea creature cups in the store for them to fill up.

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Keeping the kids entertained is so important at a party. It let’s the parents relax a little, too! Besides the obvious of a using sprinklers and kiddie pools, I had a few games planned for the kids that cost next to nothing.

Fill the Bucket -- Using recycled milk jugs (I saved from a few weeks prior), and a dollar store sponge, each team had to soak the sponge in the bucket with water and squeeze out the water into the milk jug. Once the jug was filled, that team was our winner!

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Water Balloon Toss – You can get the parents into this one too!

Sandcastle Building –- if you already have a sandbox – this one is a no brainer!

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Photo Booth -- Now this one I got real creative with, but it did not cost me a lot of money! I wanted to create a “beach’ for the pictures of everyone (and I mean everyone got into the photos).

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Using a backdrop I found at a craft website, and a few play yard bags of sand , the beach was born!

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I had a basket of props for everyone to pick from. They had a great time with this!

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It’s not that hard to pull this party together and celebrate with friends! I hope you found some beachy ideas and until next time friends... hang ten!

Thank you, Melissa, loving the beach photo booth you made with real sand! To learn more about Melissa, visit her at My Party Passion.

FREE Summer Party Printables from Thedezign Party!

Thinking of throwing a summer party for your kids? Now there's no excuse, because Tatiana at Thedezign Party! created these  adorable summer party printables and we're giving them away for free. Thank you, Tatiana!

The collection includes: invitations, party circles, blank favor tags, straw flags, tented cards, thank you notes, cupcake wrappers, and a "summer is fun" banner.


Here's the whole collection...


And here are some sample files...

What a cute collection, Tatiana, makes me want ice cream now!

To learn more about Tatiana and see all of her designs, check her out at Thedezign Party! and on Facebook.


{RECIPE} Tasty and Refreshing Granita for Summer

It's been hot hot hot here in Palo Alto, so I wanted to come up with a recipe that would be cool and delicious. That's why I excitedly created these strawberry and orange granitas.

For those of you who don't know, granita is an Italian dessert that's a cross between a snow cone and sorbet. It's sweet and icy, simple to make, and the key to getting the texture just right is to mix it every twenty minutes with a whisk while it's freezing in the freezer. Plus, I added a little champagne to each flavor to give them both a nice zing.

I love how they turned out. They were so tangy and delicious and just the thing to cool David and me off!


(For orange granita, substitute 1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice for 1 1/2 cup strawberry juice)


  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3-4 cups strawberries mashed and strained to make 1 1/2 cup strawberry juice (for strawberry granita)
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup champagne (or any other liquor you'd like to add)
  •  Mint for garnish


In a pot, add 1/2 cup water and 1/4 cup sugar. Heat until sugar is dissolved, then take it off the heat to cool.

Once cooled, mix the sugar-water mixture with 1 1/2 cups orange juice or strawberry juice (depending on which you are making), 1/2 cup champagne, and juice from 1/2  lemon.

(Since we've just moved, I couldn't find our Cuisinart in our sea of boxes, so I mashed the strawberries by hand, then strained them using a fine strainer. I only used 2 cups of hulled strawberries which produced about 3/4 cup of strawberry juice, so I added a little less sugar-water mixture and champagne, and it turned out great.)

Pour the mixture it into a shallow baking dish. I used a small lasagna pan.

Here's my orange granita mixture where I substituted 1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice for 1 1/2 cups strawberry juice.

Place in the freezer covered, and every 20 minutes mix it with a whisk so you continue to break up the ice crystals. It should take 3-5 hours to freeze. And look like this when you're done...

Once it reaches the consistency you like, you can store it in the freezer until you are ready to serve.

Garnish with a mint leave and look how pretty...

I promise you will love this for summer!

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DIY: Festive Pedestal Name Display Centerpiece

As you may know from reading my blog, I'm a huge fan of personalized anything at parties.

So when I saw these personalized pedestal letters spelling out "Tyler" in the middle of the dessert table at T's Summer Stripes Sprayground Birthday Bash, I had to know how Zoila made them.


Here is her easy tutorial, so take it away Zoila!

Festive Pedestal Name Display Centerpiece: (Or as I like to call it: Finally Getting Use Out of Those IKEA Frames in the Back of the Closet)

Materials Needed:

  • Wooden or cardboard letters suitable for painting – approximately 5” high (we found ours at Michael’s)
  • Craft paint
  • Coordinating patterned or solid / textured cardstock
  • ZOTS™ 3D clear adhesive dots
  • IKEA® TOLSBY double-sided pedestal frames – only $0.99 each
  • Paper trimmer or scissors
  • Paint brushes
Step 1: Plan which color you will use and which cardstock pattern / solid you will use as a backing for each letter. (Much easier to sort everything out before you are putting them together.)

Step 2: If you haven’t already done so, setup your frames by attaching the pedestal and peeling the protective cover off BOTH sides of each of the clear plastic protectors.

Step 3: Prep and paint your letters (front, sides, and nooks and crannies) in coordinating colors for your party theme. No need to paint the backs of the letters. Depending on how light or dark your letters are going to be, you may need a white base coat or several coats of paint. (We did about 4 coats per letter using a basic all-purpose, water-based paint.)

Step 4: Trim your cardstock to fit the frame at 4.125” x 6.125”. Each frame will use two pieces of cardstock, front and back.

Step 5: Insert the front and back pieces of cardstock on the outside of the plastic protectors. In other words, the two photo protectors will be sandwiched in between the two pieces of cardstock. Make sure the cardstock faces outward. The letters will be adhered to the cardstock, not the frame itself.

Step 6: Once your letters are dry and ready to adhere, place a 3D glue dot at the top and bottom of the letter.

Step 7: Press onto the cardstock that is to be the front of the frame. (Be mindful of where you are positioning the letter as these glue dots are a bit hard to reposition.) The letter should float a bit in front of the frame and if the letter is wide enough, will be layered over the frame. Repeat for each of the letters.

Step 8: Enjoy the oohs and ahs when people admire your craftiness.

Thank you Zoila for this easy tutorial! To learn more about Zoila and see her beautiful printable designs, check out Squared Party Printables.

If you haven't seen the rest of T's Summer Stripes Sprayground Birthday Bash check it out.  What a fabulous summer dessert table, love all the vibrant colors.

FREE Summer Party Printables from Embellish

If you're looking to add a little sophistication to your summer party, we've got these stunning FREE beach party printables for you, designed by the talented Kirsten of Embellish.

The collection includes: party circles, invitations, cupcake wrappers, tented cards, drink flags, banner flags, and water bottle labels.

Party circles


Cupcake wrappers

Tented cards

Drink flags


Water bottle labels

Download the high resolution files for printing:

Thank you, Kristen, for these gorgeous printables. To learn more about Kirsten and see her beautiful printables, please visit her Etsy shop, and her blog, Embellish.

Now you have every reason to throw a summer party!!

TRENDS: Summer Parties on Catch My Party

As summer winds down, I thought it would be fun to revisit some of our most memorable beach and pool parties of the year.  Enjoy!

Lindsey M's Girly Gecko Birthday Party

Lisa R's Carnival Party

Sarah Y's Popsicle Party

Katie I's Flip Flop Fabulous Party

Christina C's Splish Splash Party

Maureen A's Blue and Green Pool Party

Jen C's Brinley's 2nd Birthday

Lisa R's Hannah's Flip-Flopped Party

Claudia S's Surf's Up Party

Tonya B's Splish Splash Soiree

Hope you've had a wonderful summer!

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