Wintertime always has me longing for spring and summer days in the outdoors, so I've been reflecting on some of my favorite places to visit in the warmer weather. Allen and I love hiking (more like nature walks to those of you who are intense hikers haha), and one of our favorite hikes/nature walks is a really short and easy trail to The Grotto in Payson, UT canyon. If you live in Utah or are every visiting during a warmer month, The Grotto is definitely worth checking out!
I thought that next time we go, it would be really fun to make a themed day of it. The Grotto reminds us of something out of a fairytale—almost like a place a mermaid could live, so we sometimes refer to it as "Ariel's Grotto." The Little Mermaid was my favorite movie as a child, and I want to pass on the Disney magic to our kids!
So I thought a fun family activity or couple's date could be to go to Ariel's Grotto, make sushi (or another meal that goes with the mermaid theme if you or your kids don't like sushi), and then watch The Little Mermaid together!
After recently seeing Moana, The Grotto really reminds me of that movie as well, so this could make a great Moana day too. You could eat a Polynesian meal and then watch Moana after doing the hike.
A couple of other activities you could do for either theme if you have more time to fill, or you want to make a whole weekend of it, are to go swimming if you have access to a pool, go on a boat or canoe ride, make your own origami paper boats to float down a river, go to a water park, and/or go to an aquarium (Utah has an amazing aquarium in Draper called The Loveland Living Planet Aquarium).
When the weather warms up, try this activity out and let me know how it goes! Happy memory making!
If you like silver, gold, glitter, and parties, this post is for YOU! Since this weekend is my birthday, I've been reflecting on my favorite birthday party from a couple years ago. My husband, Allen, threw me the absolute best surprise party ever! He shares my love for themed parties, and he themed this one based off of my absolute favorite fairytale--The Twelve Dancing Princesses. (If you're not familiar with this fairytale, check out the synopsis here if you're interested.)
If you like this story as much as I do (or if you just want some ideas for a silver/gold party), you can totally replicate this amazing themed party that Allen did! He used mostly items from the dollar store, along with some silver and gold spray paint from Hobby Lobby.
My favorite part of The Twelve Dancing Princesses is when they travel through the silver, gold, and diamond forests, so I LOVED how he put these sparkly branches in a vase! His mom already had the branches, but you could definitely find some branches outside and spray paint them silver or gold and even add some glitter if you want! I've even seen sparkly gold and silver spray paint at Hobby Lobby, but I haven't personally tried it yet.
Then Allen got some white beads from the dollar store and hung them from the branches along with some white ribbon. He also got a couple of gold, silver, and white ballons from the dollar store that you can see in the background. And of course, he bought me the book from Amazon, which I was so excited about!
Around the base of the branches, he put some gold votives from his sister's wedding, along with some of our Chrismas tree gold branches. :) The silver table cloth is from the dollar store and the sparkly silver fabric on top is from Tai Pan that he got 80% off after Christmas!
Here's the food table where he hung crepe streamers for a backdrop (he got these on Amazon) and he went the extra mile by cutting fringe into them and then twisting them to get this cool look! Also on the food table, he spray painted bottles silver and then bought a few sprigs of baby's breath and greenery and spray painted those gold and put them in the bottles! So creative! He also put a couple of our lit up tree Christmas decorations on the food table, along with some twinkle lights!
Here's a close-up of the food table. All of our friends were so nice and brought delicious food! The gold table cloth, gold plates, and silver forks are all from the dollar store. The overlay is from Tai Pan.
Here's a close up of the twinkle lights! This was the first thing he ever used Pinterest for, haha. He just took some jars turned upside down with some twinkle lights inside! He got the lights on eBay. Some twinkle lights come with a battery pack and some have cords that plug into the wall, so just choose which one works best for where you're putting them!
Here's a table where we sat and ate. Allen got candles and candle holders from the dollar store and then he spray painted the candle holders (and more bottles, leaves, and baby's breath) silver and gold. He also found some fake vines with leaves at the dollar store that he spray painted silver and gold and put along the table. So cute!
Last, but certainly not least, Allen got me cinnamon rolls from Cinnabon (my favorite!) in lieu of cake and stacked them like a cake. The awesome thing about these particular cinnamon rolls is that when he went to pick them up, the power at Cinnabon was out so they couldn't use their credit card machine, so they gave him all the cinnamon rolls for FREE! Best birthday gift ever! Haha. Then Allen topped the cinnamon rolls with some adorable gold cake candles from the dollar store.
Needless to say, I was VERY impressed with Allen! I hope you enjoyed this awesome party inspiration from my amazing husband! Now go throw a princess party with some silver and gold!
Items used in photos above:
Dollar store—silver and gold tablecloths, beaded necklaces, candle holders, candles, plates, silverware, vines, balloons, and candles
Amazon—book and crepe streamers
Hobby Lobby—spray paint (Krylon brand) and ribbon
Save on Crafts—votives (save-on-crafts.com)
Treasures Antique Mall (local thrift shop)—bottles and jars
Tai Pan—sparkly gold and silver ribbon/fabric (table overlays)—go after Christmas for huge savings!! I've also seen the same ribbon/fabric at Michael's throughout the year and you can use their 40% off coupon at checkout!
Gatehouse—sparkly tree branches (if you're not handcrafting these, make sure to go after Christmas for huge savings as well!)
***If you want some gold and silver treats for a goodie bag or on a dessert table, try some Rollos, Hershey's kisses, Almond Roca, and/or Ferrero Rocher!