Let’s Taco ‘Bout It!

This is the first birthday party that almost didn’t happen.

We planned really well, ordering fun items from the US in time to be hand carried by my Mother-in-Law who came to visit for East’s first birthday. She arrived the end of February. Not 2 days later, East started coughing and came down with a cold, so bad her chest was rattling. Then my Mother in Law fell ill. By the weekend, a week before the party, I succumbed. My husband held out, making me a short time believer in the flu shot. But we forged ahead planning, thinking we’d be better in a week.

We weren’t. My glands were still swollen a week later and I had no voice. East was probably the best, but she still had a cough. My Mother in Law was ill, and my husband was starting cough. But the real kicker was Friday afternoon, the day before the party, the cat got sick too. With running all over town, going to vet and the pediatrician, still not full recovered, we decided to postpone the party a week.

I’m glad we did– we ended up with more babies able to come in the end. We lost some people, gained some, and fun was had by all. My sweet MIL made 2 pinatas and supervised the food, I had a voice and could talk to guests and give instructions, my husband managed the drinks and the non-baby friends, and East was able to play and have fun. Some people may have thought it was a bit odd to have a taco and margarita party for a 1 year old– but I think it was just perfect for us.

I dreamed of having a park party– a common US kids’ party location– but the weather in Hong Kong is too variable. You don’t know when it might rain, or be cold or crazy hot. So we settled on the common rooms of our building (our apartment– and most apartments– are much too small). Thankfully this offered us flexibility in terms of the date– although not much of the decor. It’s what I call medieval Vegas– but there is a kids playroom, a kitchen, a bar, and a couple of sitting areas. We made it as festive as possible, with tons of papel picado, balloons, flowers, and pinatas.

When guests walked in: DSC_0134

You can just see the sitting area to the right, with the baby food (veggies and no salt food) to the right. And you may be able to make out the taco pillow! (These quesadillas were popular!)



Also some fun hanging elements in this room. DSC_0142

This was outside the kids playroom, with the first pinata. DSC_0157

We put out mats for the little ones to crawl around. I also found taco and burrito felt toys to get the kids in the mood. (The birthday girl trying them out!)


Heading the other way, towards the food, stopping at the bar is mandatory! DSC_0111


And chips, salsa and guacamole, of course. I love those pineapple plates!


The obligatory letter balloon– which is still inflated! East loves playing with it!  You can also see the papel picado  and the cake in the background.


We had an a regular full sugar cake (lemon with blueberry filling) as well as no sugar banana cupcakes for the babies. East ate a whole cupcake herself.


The taco menu–

easts birthday party 2

Can you believe we didn’t end up with any pictures of the tacos?? What’s wrong with us?! But we do have a pic of the taco pinata!



For activities, we had story time, read by my husband. Appropriately, Dragons Love Tacos. East loved it. easts birthday party


And we made maracas! Using just plastic eggs, beans, wooden spoons and tape, I think the kids (and parents!) had a good time. And it was a good take away.



Lastly, cake time!



And the next day we left for Perth!

Sending Invitations…via What’s App

East’s first birthday is nearly upon us, and we are deep in planning mode for her party. For as much as I love paper and would have loved to send out (or deliver!) gorgeous invitations, I communicate almost entirely by Whats App these days. Not only to talk to my family back home, but to schedule play dates, learn about events, or share baby stories with other moms. So when it came time to getting out the word for the party, I wanted the fastest, most effective way to get on people’s busy calendars. So via text it went!

taco-invite-east blured

Mamas have to be adaptable, even party planner ones!

Summer Lovin’

How’s your summer going? Can you believe July is nearly over? I’ve gotta get in my sunny days in while I can!

Here are some things I’m loving right now…

collage fav july

1. This baby shower tablecloth is so cute.

2. I must have this gold {temporary} tattoo.

3. Chocolate potato chips? Yes please!

4. I adore this 40th birthday. It gives me ideas for a future party for my hubby…

5. Tiny gift parade. {this has made the rounds, but I love gifts!}

6. Candy necklace napkin ring. So colorful and fun for summer.

What are you loving this summer?

Personalized Gifts

I love giving gifts. It’s so much fun to find the perfect item for someone, just the thing that they need or want. For special occasions, I find that personalized gifts that commemorate the moment can become the most meaningful items to share. Living overseas, it can be hard to to provide these kind of thoughtful gifts– so thank goodness for shopping online!

Uncommongoods is now offering handmade and personalized gifts, making it so much easier for me to find the perfect gift for friends and family. From jewelry to entertaining items, home decor to slippers, you can find something for everyone. Just check out some of these items…

collage uncommongoods


1. I met 4 new babies while I was home in the US. These pillows would have been perfect gifts for those families.

2. These shark slippers make me laugh. These would be great for a nephew or a brother.

3. I love this personalized couple/family art. So cute and good for any stage of life.

4. This handmade basket is just plain cool.

A Little Girl’s Frozen Dream

One of my favorite followers on Twitter asked for some party ideas for her 3 year old’s birthday. This little lady loves Disney’s Frozen (I mean, really, who doesn’t?), so I put together a party that I’d like to attend!

collage frozen party


1. Some cute movie ticket invites {free printables!}

2. I like this marshmallow topiary. And naturally, styrofoam snowmen would be welcome.

3. These would be adorable give aways.

4. A plastic snow globe would be a fun and easy activity for little hands.

5. Flowers {and snowflakes} always add. {I’d probably use mums}

6. The name just asks for frozen treats– snow cones, popsicles, ice cream. As long as it’s blue!

7. These simple decorations {but still cute!} in the blue color story will allow you to create consistency, without being too theme-y.


Let us know how it goes!

Party Themes I Gotta Try

I’m always looking for an excuse to throw a party, host friends, or make someone feel special. These ideas would be so much fun.

collage party themes


Living in Hong Kong, there is lots of to-and-fro. These invitation are amazing.

Do you have too many books and nothing to read? Me too.

A seriously healthy birthday cake. It’s pretty, but…oh.

And always, treat yo self.

June Crush

Some things I can’t stop thinking about this month. #happysummer

collage june love


1. A how-to for writing on a cake

2. A Farmers Market First Birthday. So adorable.

3. Everything you love about your state, in a postcard.

4. Color code your bar cart. Yes please.

How To: Polka Dot Party Tablecloth

Do you remember this awesome party? At Charlee’s 5th Birthday I painted this polka dot tablecloth, as well as some striped ones. Since the original post was lost, I thought I’d re-create it here.

balloon backdrop


I won’t lie– this is a time consuming process. It took me 2-3 times more time I expected. But the results are awesome– so colorful and fun. I was sad to see them go at the end of the party!


tablecloth how to.jpg


First I washed and dried the tablecloth (I got a blend, part cotton to make it a little stiffer) and laid it out on the floor, on paper.

Since I was working with so many colors, I marked bowls to lay out the color and the look, giving it that perfect, but not too perfect, randomization.

I made a circle stencil for each color, and used acrylic paint to make the dots. Pick up the stencil quickly, so it doesn’t dry to the tablecloth. Let the tablecloth dry overnight.

Drape it over a table and get ready for the compliments!

Black, White, and Neon Cake + Tea

One of my good friends celebrated a birthday this week, so even though it was wet and rainy, I had her over for a little cake and tea.


I used a tea towel for the backdrop, one I got in Florence, Italy. I don’t remember what is says exactly, but something about preparing and cooking food for enjoyment, love and family.


I found these simple gold birthday hats at the grocery store and livened them up a bit with twine. I also grabbed the beautiful white flowers to freshen things up.


I really loved these washi tape stirrers with the pop of neon color. You just can’t beat washi!


It was just the two of use, so I made a little cake, and spruced it up with mini oreos. Not heathy, but oh so good with the yellow cake. And I made the T2 quince tea that mentioned in my last post, which was a big hit.




Overall, it was a fun afternoon, even dodging the rain.

What do you love?

February was a little crazy for me, so I’m just as glad to see it go. I’m hoping March will be better. My husband and I are celebrating our 5 year wedding anniversary mid-month with a trip, so it’s already looking up. #needavaca

That being said, there were some great ideas floating around the web world in February. Here are some of my favorite and I hope you like them, too.

collage fav march


Food station wedding buffets– but nothing beats that sign.

Billboard birthday messages.

I had to follow this board, with its Event Lucky theme.

These carrot stamped DIY dish towels are adorable. The wrapping, too.