Chicago Graduation Party

I’m headed to Chicago today to spend Memorial Day Weekend with my besties and thought it fitting to share with you this clever dessert table by Whimzical Parties and Designs. This guest of honor is off to The Windy City after graduation so the dessert table was themed accordingly complete with a Chicago skyline backdrop! And how cute is the airplane with the banner flying behind?!

Have a great Memorial Day weekend everybody!!!

An Elegant Beach Photo Shoot

I wish I lived closer to the beach. If I did I would have a party and copy every single detail of this photo shoot by KT Merry Photography. I was thrilled to see that the shoot took place at the Moorings Village in Islamorada, Florida as we are headed to Florida next month for vacation! I adore the concept too since it reflects a similar concept I had in mind for my own wedding (sans the beach). It’s casual meets elegance aka “black tie meets the beach” incorporating my favorite flower (peonies) and my favorite rock (diamonds). What’s not to love? And just in time for summer…

Vendors:

Location: The Moorings Village
Styling: David Fittin
Gowns: Douglas Hanet and Oscar de La Renta from Ever After Miami
Florals: Parrish Designs
Hair and Makeup: Lori Cleary
Assistants: Chad and Nicole

The “Shoe” Game

As promised, here are the questions I asked my parents for The Shoe Game we played at their anniversary party. I found these questions in several places around the internet and tweaked them a bit to match my parents’ personalities so I advise you do a Google search if you want more suggestions. This list is safe for anniversaries/grandparents/children whereas other lists can get a little risky. 😉

-Who made the first move?
-Who said “I LOVE YOU” first?
-In high school, who broke it off the most? (My parents dated all throughout grade school and lived on the same street. Every time they broke up my mom would send her baby brothers up the street with a wagon full of my dad’s stuff and my dad would send his baby sister back down the street with my mom’s belongings.)
-Who has the wackiest family?
-Who’s the better driver?
-Who’s the faster driver?
-Who is in control of the checkbook?
-Who spends more money? (They both chose each other for this question)
-Who wears the pants in the family?
-Who steals the cover’s more?
-Who is most likely to let Boo sleep in the bed? (Boo is my parents dog)
-Who’s most likely to get lost?
-Who’s most likely to ask for directions?
-Who has gotten the most speeding tickets?
-Who is the bigger baby when they get sick?
-Who is the first to say “sorry”?
-Who’s the one that started the fight in the first place?
-Who forgets things the most?
-Who is always right?
-and finally… Who do you love the most in the whole wide world…(My dad held up his own shoe for this question, which had everybody rolling!)

My Parents’ 30th Wedding Anniversary

My parents celebrated 30 years of marriage this year and so I of course insisted on throwing a party (duh). My cousins threw their parents a wonderful party last year and I wanted to make sure my parents felt just as special. The difference, though, is that my cousins had nine adults to help plan their parents soiree and I had me, my sister (sort of) and my husband (who I was trying to boss around to a minimum). My brothers were both MIA as one plays professional baseball and the other is away at college and my sister is in the midst of her senior year (and thus still at my parents’ house under their every watchful eye) so I started working on the party last year knowing what I’d gotten myself into. Needless to say, when all was said and done we were all 100% exhausted and so glad it was over. With that said, everything was perfect.

We couldn’t have prayed for better weather. It was a perfect 72 degrees with a slight wind and scattered clouds. Perfection. I also made sure I sprayed vigorously for mosquitoes the day before. (Side note: number one question I want to ask God at the pearly gates: The mosquito? Really? What was your thinking on that one?) As with any and every party we encountered a few roadblocks along the way. On the day of the party we were hanging the stringed lights and discovered that if you connect more than three strands together they will short. Oops. So we had to disconnect, fix the lights and rewire. My husband deserves a medal for all his hard work on this party. I would have had a nervous breakdown if he hadn’t been so helpful. Ok ok I did have a nervous breakdown but I would have had two nervous breakdowns. We also had a difficult time detangling the strands of my dessert table backdrop. I was THIS close to just cutting them. This close. The party was held where my parents’ were married which at the time was my granny’s house but now belongs to my mom’s sister. My aunt and her family worked tirelessly making their backyard perfect for the party and it was. Ready for me to prove it? Ok!

My cousin Aubrey took pictures for us. She just showed up and offered, like an angel. She and her mom also made the sign below and sell customized signs on their website!

My husband and I went through desperate measures to cut Magnolias down from the tops of the trees. On Thursday before the party we had made sure there were enough to cut down on our property and when we woke up Saturday morning the ones we had found were all brown so not only did I have to sit on his shoulders to find an acceptable flower to cut, we also had to climb onto the roof of our house! I’m not a big fan of heights or 90 degree angled roofs so just imagine me in a half squat, half standing position trying to maneuver my way across the roof at snail-like speed.
SURPRISE!!!
We played the “shoe game” that you often see at weddings. The premise of the game is that I would ask a question in which the answer would either be “Steve” (my dad) or “Rene” (my mom). To answer the questions, my parents each held one of my mom’s shoes and one of my dad’s shoes and held up the shoe accordingly. It ended up being highly entertaining, especially considering the fact that my parents answered every question differently. I will include a post next week with the questions I used for the game!
Happy 30th Anniversary mom and dad!!!
My sister Morgan also took a few photos at the party…
We “blindfolded” my parents so they wouldn’t suspect where we were going. I didn’t have actual blindfolds so kitchen towels sufficed. 
 For their first surprise, we sent them on a gondola ride!

On the dessert menu: Double Fudge cake truffles from Romano’s Bakery, Carrot Cake cupcakes from That’s the Cake (my parents wedding cake was carrot cake), cookies from Tiff’s Treats and Bread Pudding Whoopie Pies from Society Bakery.
We made my parents a scrapbook (on the right) of letters from their friends and family and modge podged the front with copies of their old love letters we found!
 We hung my mom’s wedding dress, hat and shoes at the sign in table.

A special thanks to the following vendors:

Design/Coordination: Events by Shelbi Rene
Invitations/Photography: Three by The Quill Pen
Food and Catering: The Prairie House
Cake Truffles: Romano’s Bakery
Cupcakes: That’s the Cake
Cookies: Tiff’s Treats
Whoopie Pies: Society Bakery
Gondola Ride: Gondola Adventures

I can’t say thank you enough to the following individuals who, without their help this party would not have been a success:

*Preston Rampy (as my dad said, my company should really be “Events by Shelbi Rene and Preston”)
*Ed and Barbara Bonneau
*The Heard Family
*Marsha and Shannon Bonneau
*Aubrey Bonneau
*Troy Bonneau
*Rick and Jane Smith
*Derrick and Chandra Chen

Piece of Cake Tutorial #2 by Jessica Kirkland

So yesterday I shared with you one way to dress up a plain cake and today I want to share another way. Jessica Kirkland shared this DIY on Hostess with the Mostess that costs only pennies to make. Not to mention the actual cake is an $8 grocery store cake and just like the last tutorial I shared with you, these decorations can accomodate any occasion!

Here’s what the cake looked like before the decorations…

And these are the cakes after adding the decorations…

Stunning right? And so SO simple! These cakes cost her MAYBE $10 a cake. Now THAT’s a deal! Hostess with the Mostess has the full tutorial. Thanks Jessica!