Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Boy Scout Birthday Bash

This past weekend I threw a joint birthday party for my hubby and his best friend. It was so much fun, especially considering hubby's best friend's wife is my close friend and she helped throw the Birthday Bash.

When we were discussing what we should theme the party, the idea came up to celebrate their birthdays by reminiscing on the days of their youth as Boy Scouts. I had a ton of fun searching through Pinterest and my own imagination to come up with ideas for the party. I spent the week before the party making the decorations.

First, I made the "Happy Birthday" banner by printing out the font I wanted from Microsoft Word. Then, I traced the letters onto cardboard and cut them out using my Exacto Knife. Next, I traced the letters onto outdoorsy themed scrapbook paper, cut them out, and mod podged them onto the cardboard letters. Finally, I punched holes through each letter and strung them together using twine. I think it turned out awesome (see bottom right picture) -->
Second, I made the "Boy Scout Camp" sign. I went around my town house and gathered up twigs. I broke them and laid them out to spell the words. Then, I simply glued the pieces of stick to the cardboard, punched holes in the cardboard and strung it on some twine. I made the "Camp" arrow the same way. Our townhome is on the corner and you can't actually see our front door from the parking lot, so I thought it was a cute way to point the way for our guests that had never been there before.Finally, the day of the party, my beloved hubby hung my tent entrance. We used white curtains that used to hang in our living room, but I shrunk them accidentally in the dryer. Since then we had bought new ones, but I had hung onto these knowing one day they would serve a purpose. Hubby draped them over sticks and hung the sticks using twine and hooks. He did a great job at fufilling my vision.

Also during the week, I planned out the menu for the food we would offer, and I made the tent that would be the centerpiece of the table. (See table picture below). I made the tent using twigs and twine and covering it with some fabric. I actually LOVE the way it turned out.

Throughout the week, I made my lists of things that had to get done and the grocery lists. Friday after work, my friend and I went to Sams to buy food and hung out at my house making all of the delicious treats and rocking out to some Disney music. Meanwhile, our two husbands hung out and played on their computers. We had so much fun making everything!

Starting from left to right on the table I will now explain the Boy Scout themed treats we made :)

1) S'more Bites:
Because S'mores are so messy, we decided to do a bite- size treat. All you have to do is melt some chocolate and crush some graham crackers. Then take a marshmallow (on a fork or toothpick) and dip it in the chocolate then into the graham crackers. Place it on a cookie sheet with wax paper. The chocolate hardens in just a few minutes. They were easy to make and our husbands loved them!

2) Acorns:
These are also really easy to make and very tasty. Unwrap the Hershey kisses and break pretzel rods into little bits and dump the mini nilla wafers in a bowl. I put the three ingredients into separate bowls. Then I put chocolate icing into ziploc bags. It turned out to be beneficial to make two icing bags because as the icing gets warm by using it, it stops holding together as well. Having two bags lets you keep one in the refrigerator so you can switch it out. Then just use the icing to attach the Hershey kisses to the mini nilla wafers and then add the pretzel bits to the top. That's it! These were a big hit!
Acorn Inspiration Here

3) Fire Cupcakes:
These are pretty straight forward. We made vanilla cupcakes. Then I colored 1/4 of the icing red and the rest green. We iced the cupcakes with the green. Then using a tip and the red icing, and put "flames" in the middle of the cupcake. Finally, break the pretzel rods into thirds and stick the ends into the flames. This was such a fun addition.
Cupcake Inspiration Here

4) Sliders and Mini Corndogs:
We decided to go with sliders rather than full sized burgers because it was more reminiscent of Boy Scout days. We used salt, pepper, and garlic salt to season the burgers. Then you just roll the patties to be about 2oz or 1/8 of a lb. Then you grill it for 6-8 min the day of and put it onto dinner rolls. The mini corndogs were pre-made frozen ones that you simply bake in the oven.
5) Pinewood Derby Cars:
These were also a lot of fun to make. We used a variety pack of mini candy bars. We used m&ms as the wheels, Spree as the steering wheel, and Honey Teddy Grahams as the drivers. Unwrap the candy bars, cut the spree in half, and cut the teddy grahams in half. Then use chocolate icing to glue it all together. The color coding turned out really cute!
Derby Car Inspiration Here

6) Edible Fire:
This is a brownie baked in a circle pan. When it was cool, I covered it with chocolate icing and then sprinkled crushed graham cracker over it. We used twix bars as the logs and red and orange m&ms as the coals. Finally, we used Fruit Roll-ups as the flames. The one that was my inspiration used tissue paper as the flames, but that wasn't edible so I came up with this idea. It turned out super cute.
Edible Fire Inspiration Here

We also served lemonade and sweet tea and allowed guests to bring their own beer.

I was soo happy with all of the food. Everybody loved it. The final decorations were a couple of Boy Scout themed activities. First, on top, I printed out different Boy Scout badges. I picked ones that represented the interests of our birthday boys. I set out safety pins, and had the guests pick a badge and wear it. Second, I printed out the Boy Scout Law which is the characteristics to be found in a Boy Scout. I set out sharpies and cards to have our guests write a note to the Birthday boys pointing out how they saw the traits of a Boy Scout in them.

Well, that was my Boy Scout Birthday Bash! I am so excited about how everything turned out and everybody seemed to really enjoy the food and decorations. This is my favorite party I have thrown and I had so much fun doing it!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


I am so excited about the things that God is doing in the life of the Nolls!

1. Earlier this year, I finally got a teaching job! I have been searching and praying for a teaching job since I graduated FSU in May 2010. (Well I've actually been praying about it since I was a child.) The first August after graduating, school started and I didn't have a job. I was devastated. It is probably the most I have questioned my life and my dreams and even the path that I thought God had put me on. I don't know how I would have made it through without my beloved husband. Throughout the next year, I worked two jobs at the same time (which was rough) while Austin finished up grad school. Finally, Austin graduated and got a job (yay!) Less than a month later, he got a raise (double yay!) He was now making enough that I could resign from my job (Sorry Dr. Currieo) and focus on looking for a teaching job. As I spent time at home, I discovered that I love being a stay at home wife and focusing on my husband and our home. Through it, we saw we could live comfortably on only Austin's salary. Austin told me that I didn't have to work unless I wanted to. I figured out through all of this that I really only wanted to work in a Christian school. As I stated at the beginning of this post, I got a teaching job for next school year. I am so excited about the school! It is a Christian school here in Tallahassee that is a hybrid program. The students are in school Mon-wed and then they are home schooled by their parents Thurs-Fri. The teachers send home lesson plans for the home school days. I absolutely love the set-up of the program. The school focuses on academic excellence, moral excellence, spiritual excellence, and leadership combined together for a God-centered, well-rounded education. I am an assistant teacher this year. I hope that I can show what I can do and hopefully get to have my own classroom next year. But for now, I am absolutely thrilled to be a part of this environment and so thankful to get back into the classroom.

2. The second exciting event is that Austin got another promotion! He started his new position on Monday. He is now in management. When talking about his new position, it is the position that he had been looking for when he was preparing to graduate grad school. At that point, either the companies weren't the right fit, or they required traveling for five days out of the week. As we did not want that in our lives, we moved away from that route. God saw fit to bring us back to the perfect job for Austin.

3. Finally, we are in the final stages of buying a house! We will be closing at the end of July. I could not be more excited about this house! It was built in 1950s, so it does need a little updating. I am even excited about that. It has a lot of charm and I can't wait to put my stamp on it through the decorating. I promise pictures when we close. I can't wait to move in. Although, I am not loving packing up our townhome. How did we get so much stuff into this place???

Whew! What a crazy whirlwind summer it has been, and it is not done yet! Praise the Lord for his faithfulness to us!