Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Celebrating Four

Happy Birthday Kate! 

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Pictures Say it All - Matt & Bonnie's Engagement

Congratulations to the future
Mr. & Mrs. Matthew Bemister!
PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and Lolli

Plotting an Engagement

The story began on July 24, 2010  while I was out of town at a gift show in Orlando. My brother was supposed to come over and watch Brendyn while Joey and Kate went to a birthday party at the YMCA.  Matt was running late, Joey was stressing out so I put in a big sister phone call to little brother to see what was taking so long.

I found out that Matt was running late because he was at Soloman Brothers in Buckhead buying an engagement ring for his girlfriend (who also happens to be my co-worker) Bonnie. I come home from Orlando that night and Matt is at our house eating dinner, so I ask him to show me the ring and he pulls out the picture. So I asked him point blank "How are you going to do it," and in true Matt fashion he starts rattling off some of  the various ideas he has, which my favorite one was skydiving. I just looked at him shaking my head and said, "you can't put a ring on someone's finger 20,000 ft in the air - what if you drop it..."

So after the kids were in bed and over a few beers we started coming up with a real plan so Matt could propose to Bonnie. We came up with the idea to take her to one of the wedding venue's that she's been eyeing for months which is Flint Hill Mansion in Norcross, GA. And the original plan was Matt and Bonnie would go there to take a "tour" and while they were outside he would propose and after she said Yes, they would walk inside where friends and family would be waiting to toast them with champagne. We knew we had a limited window to do this so Matt and I immediately got to work, he contacted the venue and arranged the photographer while I was in charge of getting the friends and family to Flint Hill. 

The surprise element was a true test to both mine and my brother's will power. Matt and Bonnie live together. Bonnie and I work together it's kind of hard for both of us to not look insanely guilty and like we are up to something. And the hardest of all would be the fact that we are talkers...

So on Monday, I emailed the friends and family and told them what we were doing and to arrive at Flint Hill on Saturday at 2:30. Everyone is instantly on board. Tuesday goes by no problems and then we get to Wednesday, and this is the day whereI truly felt that our master plan was done. Bonnie comes into work on Wednesday and she looks absolutely defeated. I know something's wrong because she barely says three words to me all day. I had to initiate all conversation with her. I found out later that morning from our friend Rachel that Matt told Bonnie that they were going to a surprise engagement party for one of Matt's friends on Saturday at Flint Hill. When she told me a look of horror came over my face and I immediately sent Matt an email that said "WHAT DID YOU DO". 

At the time I thought it was the worst idea EVER! But, Bonnie had plans to go shopping with her mom and sister on Saturday and Matt's thinking at the time was this was the only way he could get her there, looking cute (he hired a photographer to document the whole thing) and propose without her figuring out what he was up to.  But, it worked. She was so irritated with Matt -- her thoughts were: We've been together almost four years... we live together...I have a picture of an engagement ring taped to our fridge... and he told me he needed time to get situated in his new job and earn some money before he put money down for a ring... she thought they were ready to do this, and after hearing that Matt was helping his friend propose to his girlfriend of less than a year Bonnie felt that Matt wasn't even close to being ready... We had her right where we wanted her.

I knew Bonnie was going to meet up with her friends Kay and Natalie on Hump Day for a scrapbooking get together so I immediately emailed them Wednesday afternoon and told them what Matt did and they worked their charm during their girl's night and on Thursday Bonnie showed up to work back to her normally cheery self! (Kay and Natalie - you girls are miracle workers)

So onto Saturday - you now know the story behind the engagement - I think the pictures in the next post say it all so enjoy the photo story of Matt and Bonnie's engagement:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Home improvement Projects - Landscaping

Happy Birthday Kate!

On Saturday, we celebrated Kate's 4th birthday a few weeks early with an "Alice in Wonderland" themed birthday party at our house. Our friends and neighbors came over for a special 'Mad Hatter' tea party. Kate and her friends dined on pizza and cupcakes and danced  to a special mixed cd of songs that I created in  honor of the Birthday Girl including some of her favorite songs by Hannah Montana, Justin Beiber, The Chipettes and Beyonce.  When they weren't dancing they were outside bouncing in the Disney Princess moonwalk.  

I also enjoyed preparing for the party. When Kate wanted to do a "Alice in Wonderland" party, I was a little nervous because there isn't much out there in terms of party supplies, but I have to say I found an awesome vendor through Etsy, who hand made Kate's invitations, cupcake toppers, treat bag stickers, thank you notes, confetti and more and that, coupled with lots of online research that gave me the inspiration I needed to carry through to come up with lots of great ideas for decorations, favors, games and crafts. As Alice in Wonderland is one of the most popular ideas for a children's birthday party, I thought I would help some of you other mom's out there and tell you what I did:

I set up our play room for the "Mad Hatter Tea party" - we rented a couple of kids-size tables and multi-color kids chairs from Rent-All Plaza in Kennesaw, GA and set the table with a blue-green paisley fabric table cloth for tea. I even used my white china teacups from Crate and Barrel and turned them in different directions as the table top decoration.  The dining room (where the adult food was set up) was decorated in a "Queen of Hearts" theme complete with casino-type decorations, red and black, hearts, spades, clubs, and diamonds and vintage Alice in Wonderland tea sets that I happen to score on a random trip to Home Goods. The entry way was decorated in pastel colored Creatology foam flowers and a Happy Birthday Kate sign.

In keeping with the "Mad Hatter Tea Party" theme, each of Kate's guests decorated their own "Mad Hatter" hat, which they all really seemed to enjoy. I bought green plastic top hats online and went to Michaels for ribbons and foam letters, hearts and different shapes that they could stick on to their hat. No glue! It was a fun and easy craft for three, four and five-year-olds. 

For fun, I posted a little video that my friend Ragan shot on her i phone of all the kids singing Happy Birthday to our sweet Kate.