Monday, April 23, 2012

Caity's Lalaloopsy Party

Caity loves Lalaloopsy dolls.
So do her sisters.
{So do I.}
When she asked for a "lala party" I thought it seemed like a really fun party theme.

Here she is, in all her 3 year old glory!!

Showing my her tiny fork that she is planning to eat her whole cake with...

I have made a decision to stay away from toxic food dye.
And white sugar.
I've felt great about this decision all the way up until my birthday girl asked for a pink cake. 
I debated about bending my own rules but decided it wasn't worth it and opted for convincing Cait that I would put pink on her cake in another way.

Cake + streamers + balloons = classic party.
They kind my Mom used to throw for me.
Love it.

Caity picked out her own balloon colors.
She basically picked every bright color available.
It ended up working out!

Little cutie!
She also requested popcorn.

Cute teeny bottles and fun straws...

Look at her sweet little self!
First thing in the morning she said 
"Mommy, it's party day and I am the party girl!!!"

She was so excited that it was finally her turn.
Three year olds really get the whole birthday thing.

Some of the familys' Lalas on display...

It's kind of a necessity to have a dollar store candle-made-fabulous these days.
Caity requested it.

Another Caity pick...teensy tiny forks.


Cute little centrepieces I ordered off of Etsy and just added the stands.

So many pretty balloons!

Sissy kisses before the party.
"No more pictures" says Cait.

We all dressed in our brightest outfits!

Sweet girl, three already!

Did I tell you I chalkboard-painted this part of my house?
Well I did.
Most of the time I keep it clean and keep the chalk our of reach but for fun I let them go crazy sometimes.
This day, the assignment was to draw lalaloopsies.

Waiting with Daddy for party guests to arrive.

Sibling picture!
Aren't they great at playing along with the party dress code?  
They do it without me even asking!

Caity was so excited when the "Happy Birthday" song was all for her!
She smiled thru the whole thing.

Happy girl!

She even had enough wind to blow out her candle all by herself for the first time!

Lots of sibling/cousin help here.

A New Lala doll!!

Happy Party Day Caity Gator!!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre

Last weekend we visited an awesome museum.

The Nk'Mip Cultural Centre had lots of fantastic information, artifacts, and a really well done likeness of many parts of a Native village.

The Museum's building is amazing.
Really well done.

Our kids standing next to the children in the first Inkameep School.

Learning how to say some Native words.

A tee-pee!

We saw a pit house at the BC Museum this fall so the kids were excited to see this again and recognize some of the same features.
I was happy to find that they had remembered quite a bit of information from the beginning of the school year.

Very cool.

Stangs and Banmans.
The kids enjoyed the museum and got an awesome feel for the desert habitat.
Thanks Nk'Mip!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Easter 2012

Happy Easter!  
We celebrated with the family out at the Stang's in Armstrong.
It was a gorgeous sunny warm day
{one of the first this spring}

Cambria got a lavender polka-dotted dress for her birthday last week so I decided to build our outfits around her new dress.

I love figuring out the color scheme and digging through the kids' closets to make it work.
{okay, I *may* have added a few new items to pull this off...}

Lots of pretty feet!

Big sister-Little sister.

Eggs we hollowed and decorated with craft paint and puff paint.

One for each kid.

Caleb's new lego.
{from his Easter "bucket"}

The Dads hide the eggs in our family.
Here the men are giving the kids the rules.
Here's how it goes down:
We get a package of plastic eggs (12) for each kid (10).
We fill the exact same thing into each set of 12 eggs and write initials on the eggs.
The Dads hide the eggs according to the age of the kid.
Each kid is only allowed to find their own eggs.
Is this too much control?
I'm okay with it, but I do like me a controlled environment:)

This system seems to work well for such a big group of kids with a large age span.
 How do you do it?

Yes, that's my son wearing sock feet outside.


These two just won't stop growing!!!

Little Bree stayed on the blanket and played with her eggs.

It was really bright for her!!

Baby cousins!

These two are so funny, they don't really interact at this stage but they are so cute to watch as they do their own thing next to each other!

Happy Easter from the Banman 8!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Cambria's Delicate Pink & White First Birthday Party

Last weekend we celebrated our 6th first birthday.

I still remember obsessing over Mikayla's first birthday.
And Mailee's.
And Maddies.
And Caleb's.
And Caity's.

I love first birthdays most of all.
The baby, the smash cake, the immense feeling of gratitude for a year of sweet baby love.

The best!
Here's to last-first-birthdays in Banmanland!

Pretty party details.

Fun tassels.
This was a new experiment.
It was time consuming and not enjoyable for my helpers.
Might be a one time only kind of thing.

White cake with lemon curd filling and whipped cream icing.
We no longer employ the likes of white sugar or flour in our home so baking is an exciting adventure in trying new things.
This was a happy success.

I popped in to the store the morning of the party to buy pink tulips and came out with these beauties.

God really does make the most amazing art of all.


The food.
Aunty Terri blessed me with two full days of aunty sleepover bliss for two of my girls.
This left Mikayla and I free to go crazy in the kitchen.
We baked, and baked.
We worked late into the night. 
It was lots of fun to have the quality time with her.

The end result was a table full of healthy tea party treats!

Peppermint Pattys
Raw Lemon Meltaways

Mini pesto-chicken-turkey bacon pizzas

Rosemary crackers and Applewood Cheddar

 A healthy copy of my favourite Girl Scout Cookie

Fancied up tea bags!
(more on this soon:)

Jamin and Aunty wearing their pink.

Big sister, little sister:)

My cute baby!

We love tea parties around here!

Cambi refused her party hat.
I still forced the issue.

I've made a hat for each of my 1 year olds.
It's a little tradition:)

Ahh, crepe paper.
The cheapest, most versitile party craft supply.

She knew just what to do with a cake on her tray.

Best pic I got with hat-on-baby.

Little cutie!
Her cake was angel food cake.

Considering if she should share with the guys...
Caleb loves Cambria to bits.
He is really sweet with her.

Party pretty-ness

Doesn't seem possible that this was a year ago.


These white eyelet lanterns have gotten a lot of miles at our house!
Mikayla just strung some simple crepe paper from the bottom wire.
Lanterns are my favourite easy party decoration item.
So many ways to mix it up.

Cambria's new bunny.
Pure sweetness.

Pink bow.
More pure sweetness.

When Mikayla was born I refused pink and frilly everything.
These days I fully embrace the world of pink:)

Pink Balloons!

This little combo is still on our table.
My secret?  I covered it with clear vinyl.
We have the pretty table cloth feel with an easy-wipe-up feature!

Yesterday I slipped educational placemats under the vinyl so the kids have something to look at while eating.

Last minute cute napkins!
Love when adorable details fall into my lap.

Some begging sisters.

Tiny fingers.
And a cute cute cake stand.
I'll have to tell you more about it later.

That's a wooden letter that I got at Michaels for $1.50.  I painted it pink.
Easy peasy.

Mikayla got too close.
Cambi got her with some whipped cream.

My party crew.
In their pink and white.
What a fun group of girls!

One more look at the little party cake.
And what's on top?

Another Dollar Store candle revamp!

We hope you enjoyed our baby's party as much as we did.
It was a special day to celebrate our little girl.

To be honest, I was exhausted at the end of it.
I always am.
As much as I love everything about throwing a party, I have not figured out how to do it in moderation and keep myself well rested and constantly pleasant.
I supposed I'm a work in progress in that regard.