Archives for February 2012

The MANLY birthday party

I discovered something recently… there are very FEW male birthday party ideas out there.  Apparently our male counterparts aren’t as interested in theme parties or “frou-frou”.  Who knew?  (snicker, snicker)

So.. what I did find?  I’m sharing today!

Like this adorable… er, totally masculine “bbq cake”, from Scissors and Spatulas.  What a FUN idea for an outdoor weekend birthday party.   And the great thing is that this cake is surprisingly easy to make.  TRULY!  Those hamburgers are actually rice cakes sprayed with red food coloring.  Read the post to learn how to make one yourself for your manly man!

I was able to find a great example of a dessert table for the man in your life, from Kara’s Party Ideas.  Can’t go wrong with browns and oranges!

This gallery from Hostess with the Mostess is for a 2 year old fishing birthday party, but I think it could totally be re-worked for the fisherman in your life.  She has some great ideas that are sure to spur your own.  For Diva Entertains – we thought “Fish Cupcakes” would be fun and found these wonderful, colorful, edible fish decorations to put on top of homemade (or store bought) cupcakes:

The next two are cake inspiration, not how-tos.  But if you really like the look, print off a picture and take it to a bakery to see if they can create.

I found several “handyman” type cakes…which could be a good theme, if your guy is a handy fellow.  Love this tool belt cake from the Sugar Syndicate.  Take time to look through their portfolio of cakes – so many great ideas!

And how about combining everything a guy loves into a theme or cake?  Check out this topsy turvy cake from the Pink Cake BoxEven if Golf, Nascar and Palm Trees aren’t your guy’s favs – create one that incorporates those that are!  I love a topsy turvy cake and they seem to be the rage at most bakeries these days:

Golf Theme Cake with FerrariAnd that’s about it!  If YOU have original party ideas for the men-folk, help us out by leaving a comment!

Tween Girl Birthday Party Ideas

When it comes to tweens and teen girls, can’t go wrong with a fashion show birthday party.  From dressing up dolls, to dressing up each other, almost any girl will love a runway birthday party!

Check out this fabulous post about a Project Runway party, from  LOTS of great ideas for throwing a fashion designer party.  Make sure you read through the whole post because there are so many amazing, low cost fashion party ideas!

For a little younger set, check out this adorable post for fashion divas, from Glitter and Gloss.  Dresses, a fashion runway, and a fashion show!  Doesn’t get better than that!  The post is filled with terrific diva girl party ideas!


Another sweet twist on a fashion party, is a SEWING party for the girls!  From Pure Joy Events, a vintage sewing party that will wow you!  If you happen to have craft skills – then this party won’t be difficult to recreate!

From Ruffles and Stuffy, really CUTE tutorial for how to make flower headbands – these would be great as favors, OR as a DIY craft at the party.  So so simple!  You can purchase everything you need at any craft store.

This tutorial from Lucks Food Decorating Company is “kinda” DIY… in the since that it tells you “how” to make the cake.  It’s probably more than most of us could handle, in terms of difficulty, but the items necessary to make it are available to purchase from Lucks.  And it IS gorgeous – isn’t it?

And finally, in the Diva Entertains shop, we have super fab fashion centerpieces.  There are so many fun ways you could use these at YOUR fashion party:

Oreo Brownie Cupcakes – Amazingly Simple To Make!

Oreo Brownies

This recipe, and the beautiful photography,  comes from Camber over at Instructionables. That website is devoted to pictorials of DIY projects including recipes!  And the recipe itself?  *DELICIOUS*.  And  oh-so-easy to make!  Thanks Camber!  VERY important note: Use FOIL cupcake liners.




















Fab Friday FREE Birthday Tag Printables

We are going to be starting a new feature here on the Diva Entertains blog… and we are calling it Fab Friday FREE Printables!  Every week we’ll bring you a new printable for your party and entertaining needs… and we’ll try to show you how to use them too!

Today’s free printable is a fun Birthday Balloons round tag.

These designs are 2 inches around, and come 20 to a sheet in PDF format.  You can print the sheet on cardstock and use a circle punch (like THIS ONE) to cut them out.  OR you can print on label paper, and do the same thing.  Then simply attach to your party or favor bag, and you are good to go!


You can download the Fab Friday FREE “Birthday Balloons” printable HERE.

Happy Friday!!

Homemade Baptism Favors (Christening and Confirmation too!)

Are you planning a baptism or christening?  If so, I’ve got some great affordable ideas for favors.

For some yummy DIY baptism favors, check out this post on how to make chocolate covered pretzels.  Read through the entire post for great instructions on how to make these.  And to jazz up the presentation of your pretzels, we have free Baptism favor tags right below


We’ve designed a couple of FREE Baptism printables for you, in case you’d like to make something similar.  These are set up in PDF format, with 20 of them per sheet.  You can simply print, punch out with a round punch (or cut out with scissors), and make favor tags!

You can download the PINK version HERE.   You can download the BLUE version HERE.

Baptisms and Christenings are a time to celebrate new life, so why not give away LIVE plants? You can purchase them inexpensively at supermarkets or nurseries. Check out this post from 2 Sisters, 2 Cities, on how to personalize terra cotta planters with mini plant favors.  I LOVE how they painted the terra cotta planters in a metallic color!:

I found a very fun and unique baptism gallery on the Hostess blog.  Sort of vintage, old-school decor… with lots of fun touches.  Click HERE to check out the gallery for inspiration. I think my favorite photo?  The “AWsome” cans:

And in the Diva Entertains shop, you can find lots of great baptism favors including our Baptism Rosary Favors and Baptism Remembrance Cards with Rosaries.

Oreo Baptism Favors  ~  Communion Magnets  ~  Beautiful Cross Ornaments

Fancy Flower Cupcakes

It’s almost time for spring (isn’t it??), and I’m in the mood for SPRINGY, eastery, flower cupcakes! And thankfully, there are plenty of tutorials out there to show me HOW to make edible flower cupcakes.

Check out this post from TomKat studio, with simple instructions on making a swirl ruffle rose cupcake:


If simple ruffles aren’t quite enough, why not try making Hydrangea cupcakes? These are much easier than you would think!  From Glorious Treats:

Using a simply icing tip, you can make a “field of flowers”!  Get easy flower cupcake instructions from Bake Decorate Celebrate (basically – you are using a star tip #22 to make the simple stars that create the flower, then a #352 tip to make the leaves – both readily available at craft store):

And from Hostess Jo comes a fun and very UNIQUE way to decorate your cupcakes with roses: (you’d never guess if we Hostess Jo didn’t tell you!)

And finally, a step-by-step tutorial on how to make big petal flowers can be found at My Sweet and Saucy:

Definitely time for cupcakes… and time for spring too!


DIY Bridesmaids Gifts

Your wedding day is coming, and you are checking off items on your To Do lists.  Bridesmaids gifts… what to do?  Why not create a custom PERSONAL gift for each one of them, so they know just how special they are to you and your big day?

Bath and body makes a great gift, any time.  Now you can make adorable handmade soaps for our bridesmaids.  Check out this DIY tutorial on the Ruffled blog:  Soap making is easy, quick and all supplies can be purchased at craft stores.

Or… a personalized monogrammed tote bag?  Another fab DIY along with cute ideas for gifts can be found here at Elizabeth Ann Designs.  In her post she explains how to do the letter or monogram.  For the doily imprint, the tutorial is here at Under The Sycamore.  Inexpensive canvas totes can be purchased at craft stores.

Jewelry is often a top choice for a bridesmaid gift, but why not take it one step further, and include a very personal, custom message?  Read the very simple DIY “message in a locket” post from 100layer cake:

Another wonderful idea is custom monogram stationary or handmade note cards.  You can click over to ellinee, and get FREE printables to customize your own bridesmaids gifts.  You’ll need to scroll down to the end of the page for these printables.  I’ve also hand-stamped note cards that I’ve purchased at craft stores by purchasing ink pads and rubber stamp there too.  Don’t forget to look in the dollar bins – they are abundant with great stamps and ink colors!

Do you have ideas for personalized DIY bridesmaids gifts?  We’d love to hear about them!

Rosemary Mashed Potatoes (with Lemon and Parmesan too!)

Parmesan Mashed Potatoes

Truth be told, the hubby and I are not to big mashed potato eaters.  They tend to be a bit on the ‘blah’ side.  That is until I concocted these.  It combines some of our favorite flavors: rosemary (which pairs perfectly with potatoes), lemon and Parmesan to elevate plain mashed potatoes into something a bit more sophisticated and special.  With very little extra effort.  In fact, I didn’t peel or use beaters or a potato ricer to make these; I simply use a wooden spoon to break up the small red potatoes called for in this recipe.  And although this recipe calls for butter, to turn these into low fat mash potatoes, swap out the butter with fat free evaporated milk.


Mardi Gras / Fat Tuesday!

Fat Tuesday is almost upon us, and if you are looking for last minute decorations OR recipes, I’ve got a few for you!

First, a DIY post on making festive pinwheels, from Mardi Gras Outlet.  You will find so many fun things at Mardi Gras Store.   And for all of their Mardi Gras Craft Tutorials Click Here:

Adorable cupcake toppers (FREE PRINTABLES for Mardi Gras) from TomKat Studio:

This new post is for a more “kid-friendly” Mardi Gras mask, BUT you could easily use the Mardi Gras Mask tutorial from Twig and Toadstool, and create something elegant:

No Fat Tuesday party is complete without a King Cake Recipe.  Check out this this from the Brown Eyed Baker:

You’ll definitely need something to DRINK while celebrating, so click over and check out the Mardi Gras Drink Recipes from Simply Stated:

And finally… two Mardi Gras Recipes! One is a healthy Jambalaya recipe from .  Also a crawfish fettuccine:

Happy Feasting!

Kids Birthday Theme Party Favors and Treat Bags

Birthday season is fast approaching in our household.  I have three parties to plan in just over six weeks.  Two of them are two weeks apart.  (Wait, where is my paper bag?  Breath…breath…)

Besides deciding on a THEME for their party, the thing my kids like MOST is deciding what kind of favor to give, and WHAT to put it in.  I have crafty, creative children, so we often make favor bags or treat bags… but we’ve occasionally splurged on “fancy” favors too.  This post is all about a variety of options, in case YOU are looking for themes for kids parties!

As I mentioned, theme is key.  Of course, sometimes the theme is the hardest part!  My oldest son is all about Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Legos.  Even though his party is first up, we are STILL working out the final theme.  To help him decide, I rounded up a few favor ideas…

If he decides to go with a Harry Potter Birthday Party,  I found a tutorial on how to make these super fun Harry Potter “Quidditch” treat bags at iVillage:

If he goes with a Star Ward birthday party, I found an adorable Father’s Day post with Star Wars treats, from Sandy Toes and Popsicles… some of the ideas would be perfect favors for a Star Wars birthday party.  Check out THIS one… Hans Rolos:  (and click on through for FREE printables for several others too!)  Key to this post is the material list and FREE Starwars Printables.

For a fun and colorful read, full of LEGO birthday party ideas, check out Crunchy Catholic Momma’s blog post about her son’s lego party.  GREAT ideas all around, including these super-easy Lego party bags, Lego party games and more!:

Now, my middle child (also a boy) has similar tastes to his big brother.  Any of the ideas above would work well for him too.  The only other ideas HE might have is for a Dinosaur Birthday Party.

Found these CUTE Dinosaur favor ideas, from the hostessblog.  The toppers would be easy to make with cardstock and some clip-art. She even shares fun and easy Dinosaur party food.

When I did a search for “art party” favors, I found this wonderful post, from Under the Sycamore, about DIY notebooks and crayons.  These items were actually made and sent to children in Haiti.  You’ll have to click through and read all about it.  I love the idea, for so many reasons, and would love to make some for party favors too!

And… last but not least… my little Princess Martha.  She is turning FIVE this year, and already had a very specific party idea in mind when I asked her. No worrying about WHAT her theme was going to be… she knew immediately…  Fairy Princess Ballerina Birthday Party!  Nothing like combining everything you love into one theme, eh?  Thankfully Fairy, and Princess, and Ballerina are easy themes to find and easy to work with.  Because she was so decisive, I actually know exactly what we’re doing for HER party (her brothers better get busy with their deciding!)

We are starting with these super fab ballerina treat bags from the Diva Entertains shop:

Martha wants each of her guests to receive wings… a wand… and a tutu.  I told her that wings and a tutu won’t fit in the ballerina bags, but she wasn’t worried about that!  So… I’ll be getting tutu and wand materials from Hobby Lobby to make THESE, from The Modest Homestead:  (the wands will be made to fit the ballerina bags!)

We will be including candy bars wrapped with these Ballerina wrappers, with added customized text to include “Fairy” and “Princess”:

And Martha wants to add more items like plastic bracelets, nail polish, and a few other little goodies.  The bags?  I think they will be full.

Nothing but the best for my Princess… and her brothers!