Thursday, May 18, 2017

You Are So Loved and a Very Special 90th Birthday Celebration!

Hello, hello! And another month is speeding by! We've passed the half-way mark of May--can you believe it? I was so busy getting ready for my mom's 90th birthday party that the past few weeks have simply passed in a blur. It was truly a wonderful celebration and I hope you'll enjoy reading about it in later on in this post. Thank you all so much for your "Happy Birthday" wishes for her--she really appreciated each and every one!

First of all, I'll share the stitching I did for mom's birthday. I thought this little freebie from Snowflower Diaries was the perfect thing to stitch for her on her milestone 90th birthday. As any of you who have stitched this will recognize, I changed it up a bit to fit our family.  The original chart (which can be found here), had only two baby birds with a mama bird. But, our family has four "chicks," so I added two more birds to represent me, my younger brother, and two younger sisters. Of course, that meant adjusting the branches, too--I think it turned out so cute!

Freebie finish of  "You Are So Loved"

I used a peachy salmon-colored fabric (which is not nearly as bright as is showing up in this photo) to pick up the colors of the flowers and edged it with the same color cording. The finish also has a tiny, silver heart hanging from the little falling branch which I added to represent my dad. Although he has been gone over two years, we still feel his love surrounding us each and every day. Mom loved it and was very touched, I'm happy to say. And so happy to finally own a "Carol pillow" of her very own. I've stitched and framed pieces for her before, but had never made a little pillow so she was thrilled!

"You Are So Loved"--all finished up

And for her special birthday/Mother's Day gift she also received the finish that I shared with you last time, "Bluebird Out My Window." I decided to add a black Smyrna stitch  for his eye rather than leaving just the fabric showing and I'm much happier with it. In real life, bluebirds have very dark, beady eyes so he looks more realistic to me with this dark eye. I found the perfect 4" x 6" frame at Marshall's and framed it using the lacing method--a first for me! Here it is--what do you think? I thought this would make a lovely gift for mom because of the word "Home" on it--she has always been the center of our home, no matter how far afield us kids are scattered...

Bluebird Out My Window--framed and ready for its new home

So, on to the big 9-0 party! Oh, it was fun--a lot of work for me, but so rewarding to do this for my dear mother. First, of course, came the invitation. I got my inspiration from Pinterest and created it using a photo of her as a little girl along with a more recent one. Just look at those curls--was she not the cutest little thing? Sort of a brown haired Shirley Temple! (I have covered up the personal information and the dotted lines weren't there in real life).

The invitation that started it all

Next, I created some personalized wrappers for Hershey Miniatures chocolates--because what's a party without chocolate? I simply experimented using Microsoft Publisher until I was able to get the correct size to cover the little bars. These are the designs I came up with...

Personalized candy wrappers in pink and black

I ended up making 125 of them which were scattered down the center of the tables along with sparkly pink and silver sequins. Thankfully, listening to a good audio book (The Women In the Castle) made the wrapping go pretty quickly. I used two pieces of double sided tape--one to hold the paper label to the original candy wrapper and the other to close up the wrapper that I made. Funny side story--at the birthday lunch, my youngest son decided it would be funny to take the wrapper off one of the candy bars and put it on a wrapped butter patty. He kept offering it to other guests as a "special" candy bar and then let them in on the joke before they unwrapped it. After the party, he placed it in the butter dish when he left--wonder what the poor waitress thought when she spied what she thought was chocolate "candy" and then realized it was actually a pat of butter!

125 miniatures all ready to eat!

The chocolates were quickly gobbled up by the party goers, but luckily, I had made mom her very own gift box for later on... For her special box, I added a couple of wrapped bars that said, "Love you Mom!" ♥

Mom's personal box of chocolates

I found these cute photo props on Etsy, downloaded and printed them, and added skewers for holders (using my hot glue gun). To display them, I stuck the skewers in floral foam and covered it with pink packing "peanuts."

Photo props from Etsy

They helped create such fun photos as you can see by the smiles below! That's my mom in the lower right--she truly is "90 and Fabulous!" My youngest and oldest son are at the top left, husband in lower left, two nieces on the left and a good family friend is at the top right. Love them all!

Who are those masked men and women?!

Another idea I spotted on Pinterest was to highlight the birthday girl's year of birth using mason jars filled with flowers. A very simple idea that turned out so cute! I used Columbine from my garden--just loved the rustic look. Another funny story, though... I picked the flowers right before we drove up to New York on Friday. Little did I know that they housed many, many tiny ants which kept crawling out of the flowers and up my legs during the entire trip! My husband even found a couple on the steering wheel as he drove. Glad they weren't bees or something that bites!

1927: A very special year

I placed the mason jars on a table filled with old photos. Everyone enjoyed looking at mom as a child, a college coed, a young bride, and also those of her in her adult years.

The photo table

The party was held in the social room at my mom's senior living center--a perfect size for the 31 guests. I requested that the tables be set up in a "U" shape and thought it worked out so well. Mom and the four of us kids sat at the bottom of the "U" where we could clearly see the guests and they could see us. A buffet lunch consisting of pasta and meatballs, chicken, rolls, veggies (no, I did not eat them--for any of you long-time readers, you know vegetables are just not my thing!) and a green salad. It was prepared by the senior living facility--they have such tasty food!

All ready for a party!

As you can see, there was lots of pink:  polka-dot balloons, linen napkins, and pretty spring  colored flowers. My youngest sister ordered the sweet floral "Happy Birthday" banner you see in the photo below from Etsy. Absolutely loved it!

Pink polka-dot balloons and purple and pink flowers

There was even dancing--well one dance; a very special one featuring mom and my middle son. I just love that photo! Doesn't my mom look fabulous--her smile says it all. And look! There is a very rare photo of me on my blog! And even more rare--I have a dress on and a pink sweater! A miracle! After lunch, the residents of the senior living community all came down and joined us for cake and punch. It was so enjoyable to chat with them and hear the wonderful things they had to say about mom.

My beautiful mom, middle son, and me!

Since the first cake didn't have candles (her facility doesn't allow them--even for birthday cakes!) we wanted to have a second cake later on so she could make a wish and blow out the candles. We ordered a positively decadent chocolate cake--oh, my! D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S! We enjoyed this one when we gathered at my brother's house that evening for pizza and subs. No one was very hungry, but somehow we found room for that cake!

I wonder what she wished for?

I made mom one last gift--a Scrabble themed card/picture. Another Pinterest idea and one that was so perfect for her as we play "Words With Friends" online each night. I had some old Scrabble tiles that had belonged to my grandmother (another avid player) so I used them along with a printed hummingbird and some puffy flowers to create this little picture. 


Whew! So, that is the party round-up. I hope you enjoyed it and found some ideas you can use for your next big family celebration. I told mom I'm going to start planning for her 100th birthday party and she just laughed. But, you never know, do you? She is still so, so sharp--I only hope I inherited her genes... She truly is my best friend--can't imagine how I got so lucky to have her as my mom :)

Thank you all for stopping in to say "hello" today! I appreciate each of your comments so very much. I'm way behind on blog reading and commenting, but hope to catch up today. AND, I really do hope to be back by the end of the month with a BIG finish... I'm working more days than usual, though, so we'll see! Bye for now...

72 comments:

Kate said...

Carol, such a wonderful party for your mom! I just bet you had fun planning and preparing for it - thanks for sharing the occasion with us. Your stitched pieces are beautiful. k

Vonna Pfeiffer said...

What a wonderful day you created for your beautiful Mom! You really did see to every detail and executed it beautifully! Having seen to throwing more than a few receptions over the last few years I understand how much work goes into what you pulled off here. It was all beautiful, wonderful and fantastically created! You earned more than a few stars in your crown 👑 In heaven for making your Mama feel like a superstar! Thank you for sharing your work, your family and your heart with us!

Mii Stitch said...

What an emotional post! You have all worked so hard to make her day so special. Your homemade gifts are the best. I especially LOVE the stitched cushion with reference to your family. This is so precious and I'm sure your mum will treasure this.

Sandy said...

That was all amazing. I know that was special for her and the family. I am taking note of all of your ideas.

Vickie said...

What a lovely post Carol. You are such a very good daughter. Oh I can feel the love in your family.♥ Your mom is so precious as a small girl. Your gifts to her are wonderful! Just perfect. I truly enjoyed all the pink!! You look good in it too Carol. ;) Thank you for sharing this special event.

Amy said...

Oh wow, what a wonderful post! You did such a lovely job with the party, and your additions to the "loved" design are adorable and heartwarming! Thank you for sharing this!

Phyllis said...

Such a wonderful celebration for your mom's 90th birthday! She looks great!
My mom also turned 90 on May 9. Although we didn't have a huge celebration like you did, she was treated like a princess by all her friends all week long. I got to be with her Mother's Day and brought her a huge bouquet of spring flowers. I've been blessed to have her for a mom.

marly said...

First off, your stitched gift to her was perfect and your framing is as good as your finishing. The little dangling heart is so sweet. As for the party, do you rent yourself out? Everything you did is just so special and the details were spectacular!

Cheryl said...

Carol, you did such a beautiful job organizing what had to be the best party!!! You thought of so many details and fun things to make and brought it all together perfectly! What a wonderful day for your mom! Your stitched pieces are gorgeous and will surely be treasured by your mom. I enjoyed all of the pink too! Thank you for sharing this.

Christine said...

Beautiful stitching, and the party looks as if it was fabulous. I especially loved the jars of columbines (even in they did have an ant problem)

Ms. Wright said...

So glad to see this post, Carol. I love the beautiful gifts that you created for mom. Honestly, everything you created for mom's celebration was amazing! Thank you for sharing your creativity and time--you made this a party to remember! Love, Julie

Mendy Elliott said...

Love your stitching! Your mom is beautiful at 90!

Vicki said...

Oh my gosh, you did an awesome job on your mom's 90th party! I love the decor, the special touches, all of it looks wonderful. I know your mom had an awesome celebration. The scrabble tile project is my favorite, so cute.

Robin in Virginia said...

What a beautiful post, Carol! The little "Carol" pillow is perfect for your Mom and I love the frame you found for the bluebird piece. But the pictures tell it all so -- what an amazing and joy-filled birthday celebration you created for her. Well done, my friend!

Gabi said...

What a wonderful post. Happy birthday greetings from Germany with delay. Your Mom looks georgous and I am sure she enjoyed each and every minute. You did a great job!!
The stitching for her is perfect and the scrabble picture simply awesome.

Heritage Hall said...

Ingenious and love-filled...all of it.. the stitchery, the party
and the planning. You made it all seem like so much fun... and
no doubt, your beautiful Mom was deeply touched by such devotion..
Thanks for inviting us to share.

Preeti said...

Love your gifts to your mom, Carol! You really did work hard and made the celebration so beautiful and memorable :) I liked all the decorations and I have seen you arrange parties in earlier posts as well, you are so good at it! Enjoyed seeing yours and your family's pics:)

cucki said...

Your mom is so beautiful
Please give her my love from South Africa
Big hugs x

Sweet Sue said...

wow carol, you may have outdone yourself, maybe a future for you in event planning?! congrats to your mom:) really nice finishes ~ congrats on your lacing accomplishment, feels good huh! now go have yourself a good loooong rest my friend, you've earned it and then some:) xo

Manuela said...

Hello Carol,
wunderschöne Geschenke hast du für deine Mama gestickt bzw. genäht. Das Auge bei der Drossel passt hervorragend hinein. Sieht super aus.
Deine Ideen für die Geburtstagsfeier für deine Mama sind alle großartig.
Liebe Grüße Manuela

WOODY said...

Amasing all you managed to do! Happy Birthday from Switzerland 🤗💓🍀🍀🍀

Tricia B said...

Fantastic party pics!!! Especially the one of the party planner 😉 Thanks for sharing!

Lesley said...


l loved reading your post Carol,your mom's birthday looks so much fun.It is wonderful you and your family could celebrate 90 years of her life.Your mom looks fantastic.
I love the stitching you made for her.So special.You certainly made the day one to remember.

Linda said...

Such beautiful stitchy gifts for your Mom Carol. The party decorations are stunning. Looks like everyone had a great time. Happy Birthday to your Mom.

Linda

LoriU said...

What a sweet party and such great decorations, gifts and fun! It was obvious your mom was enjoying being Queen for the Day!

Elizabeth said...

Belated Happy Birthday to your mom. The party looks like it was a lot of fun and enjoyed by all that were there - thanks to you. Your cross-stitch pieces are beautiful - I like your idea of adding a few extra birds for your family - more meaningful to your mom.

Pam in IL said...

What a wonderful party for your mom. She looks so happy! You did a great job with all the party prep and decorations. I love the changes you made to the Snowflower Diaries pillow for your mom. Your Columbine flowers are so unique and quite different than the ones in my garden.

averyclaire.org said...

What a lovely celebration! Your Mom looks terrific. My Mom would have been 104 if she were still here. I miss her every day. You did a beautiful job on the party things. And I adore your Snow Flower bird pillow...it's perfect! The bluebird out my window is lovely as well. Nice work as always!

Daniela Bencúrová said...

This is a beautiful celebration! 90! Congratulations to your mom! Let them be healthy!
Hugs!

CalamityJr said...

What a wonderful celebration! Everything is beautiful - your stitching and finishing, the decorations, both cakes, you in your dress and pink sweater, and most of all, your beautiful momma. Thanks for sharing a very special day for a extra special lady.

deb said...

What a wonderful birthday celebration you prepared for your mom! So many fun ideas and all those little special things - and from the pictures, she clearly enjoyed her day and appreciated all you did.

The frame for Bluebird is marvelous! And you did an excellent job framing the piece - what a very special gift. I lace my stitchery when I frame it and find it a very worthwhile chore - not hard, but very tedious....

Thanks for sharing the party with us! (and it was fun to get a glimpse of you)

Susan Lankford said...

Carol...the party, the gifts, the decorations, the cakes...amazing! Your mom is the most amazing and she looks very sharp...and still cute as can be! Thank you for sharing such a special celebration!

RJ said...

Carol, this may be my favorite post ever. It was so heartwarming and special. I must admit I had tears in my eyes. I love every single thing you did for your Mom's very special day. First of all she is still cute as a button. And you can see the delight in her face. I know she enjoyed every single minute of her day.

The pillow came out adorable. I love all the changes and additions you made to personalize it for your special Mom. I've been wanting to do that pattern for a long time and now I will get on it.

The frame was perfect for the bluebird stitch and I like the addition of the dark eye. And you are right that stitch with Home on the bottom was just the best choice for a lady that has her family number one in her life. You did such a fabulous job on every detail of the party. I had so much fun just reading about it so I can imagine how everyone felt that was there. RJ

Barb said...

This was a wonderful post, Carol. I enjoyed reading all of it. First, a belated Happy birthday to your beautiful mom. She has such a wonderful smile. That looked like such a fun party and you did a wonderful job with the theme . The covered chocolates were perfect. Plus the stitching,amazing as usual. I hope she has many more happy days like this one.

Cindy said...

Oh Carol! I just loved reading about your mom's party! You really did a great job and I'm sure she was so pleased. I love all of those ideas and everything was so pretty. Now you should take a well deserved break and stitch! LOL!

Mary said...

Carol, Every detail for your Mom's party was just perfection! What a special treat for a special lady to have so many personalized decorations, I loved the Mason jars with her year of birth, the scrabble picture and your gifts must have made her cry with joy, love the home stitch and the frame was meant for it. You can see in your Mom's face the joy of celebrating this milestone with her loving family! Mary@stitchingfriendsforever

Mavi. said...

Hola Carol: muy feliz cumpleaños a tu bella madre. Es una gran satisfacción verla con sus 90 años tan guapa, tan radiante, tan contenta, tan lúcida y disfrutando enormemente de ese día tan especial en el que toda la familia ha participado para hacerla feliz.
Me encanta todo lo que habéis preparado y ver el ambiente de alegría y felicidad que se respira.
Ojalá tengas que preparar muchas más fiestas de cumpleaños y espero que los genes tan estupendos de tu madre los hayas heredado.
Me encantan los bordados, los que nos muestras en el post y el de la cabecera del blog, es divino.
Un gran beso.

Christina said...

Oh Carol, you certainly know how to throw a party! I love all of your thoughtful touches - your mom must have been so thrilled to have those she loves around her. Wishing her many happy returns. Is your mom wearing a jacket with irises on it?! 😍😍 Just gorgeous. And I love the dress that you are wearing. Such pretty colours. It's certainly a year of celebrations for you, isn't it? Ruby Anniversary next?

jeffsrose35 said...

Wow, what an amazing day you had!!!! Thank you so much for sharing this day and all of your wonderful work. It is also nice to put a picture to the face and you are beautiful!!!

Patricia Dee said...

Carol, you made a special day even more special for your Mom. All the decorations were stupendous. Thanks for sharing it all with us.

Jackie said...

Dearest Carol, I absolutely enjoyed reading your blog post. I have not been much on reading blogs of late, but I had to come to pay you a visit :/. What a joy and a much enjoyable read about your finishes, Mom's birthday and all the preparations, decorations and finding the perfect touch for everything. Looking at your pictures, I can tell it was a success and a fun time had by all. I am so glad you all had a great time and all your effort was well worth it all. TFS and I hope to visit again...Hugs dear friend :/.

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

What a wonderful party! I love the little chocolates so much, they are such a clever idea and a great talking point. My favourite badge is the "I only came for the cake"!
You stitched some lovely gifts for your Mum too. I am tempted to stitch the Snowflower design for my MIL, she has four children too. I could add little ants for all the grandchildren and greats!

Kaisievic said...

Wonderful post, Carol, I love all of the very special things that you made for your mother - how clever you are. I bet that she loved all of it! Thanks for the link to the freebie - as you commented on Instagram, I started stitching it straight away. With one minor change, it is perfect for a project I am working on. Happy, happy birthday to your mother. hugs, Kaye

laceystitcher said...

Wow!! Everything you did for your mom's birthday celebration was absolutely fantastic. Love it! Your stitching gift to her couldn't have been any better; so creative and gorgeous. Your mom is lucky to have a daughter like you. Happy stitching..................

Lili said...

Your birthday gift to your mother is adorable!! Wonderful frame for the bird piece and such a sweet Mother's Day gift!

Your mother have a great smile, she is so happy on the photos!
How cool party!! The decoration is beautiful!

Happy weekend!

Margaret said...

It looks like it was a wonderful celebration! You are lucky to have such a great mom, and to have her for so long too.

butterfly said...

WOW, what a lovely post full of family and so much love .
Happy 90th Birthday to your Mother who looks so beautiful .
You made such a lovely party for her Carol , all those extra lovely bits you added were wonderful.
Looks like you all had a wonderful time , so happy for you and your family.

And now the stitching just love the header how cute, and all what you stitched and made for your mother was so wonderful and such love went into each and every stitch.

Nurdan Kanber said...

Carol, "the 90th anniversary" of your mother seems unforgetable ♥♥♥ You celebrated the day with such a wonderful organization.

So, I congratulate you both "your mother and you,your family for to be able to create such a special family tie ♥

The special pincushion for your mother is sovery lovely too

♥ Happy Birthday to your gorgeous Mother♥

Have a great Sunday ♥♥

pj said...

Carol,
Oh my you did a fantastic job on this party for your Mom! You made it so soecial and all fun stuff! I am sure she was smiling all day long! I love everything and especially the candy bars! What fun with the pics, the flowers, all the pink! And your special stitching! We all know that at 90 there isn't much to give from the retail stores and your gifts were made with love! Your pic is darling! You look great and am glad you are enjoying sharing your stitching! I am so happy that you shared your pics of the party!

Mothers are special to us and I know you cherish each memory! Love those smiles! ❤️

Hugs,
Pam in Iowa

Jennifer said...

What a wonderful party for your mom! I love all the Pinterest inspired items! How neat that she is still sharp and was so touched by your pillow. It is a real gift to be such good friends with your mom (I am lucky to have the same kind of relationship with my mom too). I also enjoy seeing a picture of you - great dress and pink sweater! Hope you had some time to catch up this weekend!

Arlene Grimm said...

What a lovely heartfelt party. I know your mom loved it.

Hilda said...

Oh Carol! Your mom is looking so happy on your photographs. Seemed as if she enjoyed her party very much. You made so wonderful and pretty things! Pink is such a great color for a such a beautiful silver-haired lady. I think I already wrote it on insta (hope so) but here once again: Happy belated Birthday to your wonderful mom!

Hugs
Hilda

Andrea said...

Such a special day for your Mum and I bet she had a fantastic time looking at all of the treats you made. She looks very well for 90. Love the pillow and the Bluebird piece is just perfect in that frame.

Have a good week.

Andréia Regina Sarmento said...

Hi, Carol,

What a beautiful post! Your mom's birthday party!Nice party you prepared and I loved all the finishes!

Lillie said...

What a fabulous post indeed and a wonderful party for your mum. You've planned it well and it must have been a joyful event for your mum and her guest. You look great! My happy belated Birthday wishes for your mom.

Southpaw Stitcher said...

What a great party you planned for your mom! She looks like she is a very fun person. Love the orange fabric you chose for You are So Loved. Your Bluebird Out my Window is gorgeous. I'll have to dig the chart out of my stash box and put it in the Sooner Rather Than Later pile.

Shockers Fan Tom said...

Love your heart! Thanks for sharing it.

- Tom (Stitchin Post Creations)

Diane Prenatt said...

What? No cookie table? Just kidding! What a beautiful celebration you gave your mother! I love your adaptation of the "You Are So Loved" design. The work that went into all of this! (Your mother knows.) I'm going to steal your idea for the Hershey's wrappers.

Beth said...

What an amazing party for your mother. I'll bet she was beyond thrilled. All the amazing details - chocolates, scrabble tiles - truly unique and wonderful.

Julie said...

So many beautiful things you created to make your mom's day so very special. The additions of the little birds to represent your family in the Snowflower freebie was truly delightful and so clever - you do have such a sharp mind yourself Carol.
Wishing your Mom many more happy times to come.
xx

Cindy's Stitching said...

Oh Carol. My eyes had tears just reading. What a special tribute to your mom. You have her smile and so much more. You did an amazing job on all the decorations. I could get lost in Pinterest for hours. The pictures of all your family is just a special tribute to a great day. The scrabble card made me laugh. Adore the pieces you made. The color scheme and birds so pretty. Well done my friend.

Irene said...

tanti auguri alla tua mamma, è bellissima!! Le hai fatto una festa meravigliosa, sei proprio cara

Mary - Lecoeurceltique said...

You put a lot of thought and work into your mother's birthday party. I hope she has a good year. Your stitching gifts for her are lovely.

priscilla said...

What a wonderful celebration for your pretty Mom, Carol! You are lucky to still have her and she is equally as lucky to have such a wonderful daughter. Love all the things you made .. you are so talented!

BARBARA said...

How blessed you are to have your beautiful Mom still in your life....the party you planned looks like it was a rousing success :) I have loved your blog for years and now can put a face with it......a beautiful person !

Brigitte said...

What a wonderful birthday party this was, Carol. It's amazing to see how many ideas you had and what you created for your mom's birthday party. And it's more than visible how much she was enjoying everything and everyone. Your stitched gifts for her are so thoughtful and lovely. And it was really time for her to belong to the owners of one of your beautiful little pillows, lol.
An unforgettable day for the whole family!

Sheryl S. said...

What a wonderful post and party Carol. A lot of work for you but the perfect celebration. Love the idea of the personalized choco wrappers and the photos of your mum in years gone by. She must have loved her pretty gifts and looks so happy. Great stitching too.

Sally said...

Happy Belated Birthday to your Mum. It looks as though she an amazing day and I love everything you created to make her day so special.Lovely photos. You can see the joy on her face. Lovely to see a photo of you too :)

Annie said...

Don't ask me how I missed this post. I was even anticipating a party summary post from you and still missed it!

You really should consider party planning as a second career. So many creative touches and so much work/love went into this. And such a fun loving family with their butter pat pranks, funky photos and dancing with Mom. Did you do videos too? This was really a day to remember.

And of course, you look gorgeous in your pink frock!

Meari said...

Sorry I missed the party! Happy Belated Birthday to your Mom!! Everyone looked like they were having so much fun. Love all your party themed ideas. Nice to see another photo of you on your blog. You have your Mom's smile :)

phann son said...

That was all amazing. I know that was special for her and the family. I am taking note of all of your ideas.


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