Battle of the Sexes

It was an epic event here at the Strickland household Monday night…
A night full of lighthearted competition and WAY too much grueling anticipation! Annnnnd although the results of the climactic gender reveal were not necessarily what Mom (me) had originally hoped for, I’m already beyond the irrational pregnancy emotions and looking forward to a life of raising BROTHERS!

Before showing you these photos, I want to preface: When I decide to do something, I have this uncontrollable need to overdo it – so even though it was just a small party made of primarily my family, I still went ALL out – DON’T judge! This is the big “coming out” year for GRPs (gender reveal parties), so if you’re thinking about having a GRP, here are some fun ideas for ya!

 

Invite
(I designed this cute little graphic to attach to my evite)

Entryway
(create an immediate vibe!)

My wall is painted in a flat black, so I decided to go ahead and use it as my score board! The chalk and empty frame turned out to be the perfect touch!

I hung these tissue poofs, each of which only took $1 and 15 minutes to make!
Notice the score at this point in the game – girl’s are WAY out front!

Make em’ choose a side!

This “table” of name tags is actually the box of balloons to be opened at the end of the evening… I’m all about multi-purposing!

I wore a BOY pin, Dad wore GIRL…. just so we were on opposite teams! (Typical!)

Dessert Table
I chose 7pm so I could get away with a simple cake n’ coffee bar.
Instead of the expected blue n’ pink, I went with a black and white theme (surprise, surprise!)

I took the leaf of my table out and rearranged the dining room to allow a throughway.
Of course then we had to raise the chandelier so it wasn’t hanging down in the middle of traffic

These giant letters were at Joann’s Fabric for $4.99 ea, plus I used my coupons and saved 40%!
I turned these into chalkboards as well

HER-shey’s Candies

hers -HE-y’s Candies

Betting Pool
For those who felt confident in their vote! (Winner takes all!)

Angel Food Cake vs. Devil’s Food Cake!

The Ying and the Yang

The pics from the ultrasound earlier that day hung on the wall opposite the dessert table… minus the gender photos obviously!

We played an intense game of BATTLE OF THE SEXES! Seemed appropriate for the evening!
Please ignore the messy entertainment center… it’s a “work in progress”!

Immediately following the board game we headed out to the front yard for the BIG MOMENT! No one knew what it was going to be… not even Jared and I… despite my dad’s ongoing post-reveal joke, “You mean, not even YOU guys knew what it was!?!?” “Dad, STOP!” (Funny and aggrivating all at the same time!)

Final score: 12 girl votes, 9 boy… well, 10 including Ezekiel’s scribble!

Final Bets: 9 bets in the girl’s jar… only 3 for boy!

Total Cash Winnings: $36! (Congrats, Daniel & Liza Unger!)

Jeopardy music…

Jeopardy music…

Jeopardy music…

Jeopardy music…

Jeopardy music…

…and the gender is: BOY!  (Wait, I already told you that)

I had the Party Spot tape this foil balloon to the inside of the box for keepers;
the rest of the balloons flew up into the sky for ALL to see!

~ Announcing the Name ~
Jesse
Cruz, after his grandfather & great grandfather! He will go by Cruz.
(Jesse is Hebrew for Gift, Cruz is Latin for The Cross, so his name essentially means, the Gift of the Cross!)

You’re traditionally suppose to have an outfit ready for both genders,
but I decided to save a little money and personalize some Onsies I already had.
I plan on dressing little Cruz in this for his newborn photo shoot!

Now my entry seems so plain without all the fun writing on the wall!

 I’m tempted to keep using my entry wall as a chalkboard to jot welcoming messages for all who walk through this door! What do you think?

Happy “Hump” Day!

 

For more fun GRP ideas, visit this great party blog!!!
Happy Hump Day!

-B

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4th of July WORK PARTY!

One year ago today, we had a huge work party before moving into this ol’ place. My whole family selflessly came over and got down n’ dirty rather than enjoying the usual 4th celebrations! It dawned on me some time later…

I (SOMEHOW) FORGOT TO POST THIS!?!?

It’s time to give credit where credit is do, so here’s a Throwback Thursday for ya:

*** July 4th Work Party 2012 ***

Here's the mossy siding, BEFORE my dad powerwashed it!

Here’s the dirty, mossy siding, BEFORE my dad power-washed it!

Mossy Siding

Chimney

He wouldn't stop for nothin'... Did you even eat lunch that day, Dad?

He wouldn’t stop for nothin’… Did you even eat lunch that day, Dad? #probablyNOT

Dad Powerwashing

#SOAKED!
He spent many a year climbing ladders when he owned his window cleaning business, so even up around the chimney he was going out on ONE leg… Scary!
(My hubs on the other hand, he may have a slight phobia of heights!)

Meanwhile... My grandparents were working themselves to the bone trying to prune back the hedge of ivy! I'm pretty sure they did more in their 70's then I could currently do in my 20's!

Meanwhile… My grandparents were working themselves to the bone trying to prune back the hedge of ivy! I’m pretty sure they did more in their 70’s than I could currently do in my 20’s!
(In this pic, he’s showing Jared the underground sprinkler head he just uncovered!)

Thankfully the weather was nice last year, but not quite as hot as it’s been THIS week!

You can SORT OF see the amazon that was once our backyard... I just wish I would've gotten some better pics to give you the full

If you look at the photo of my grandpa above, you can actually see the fence;
in this pic it’s still covered by the ivy FOUR FEET DEEP!

You can SORT OF see the amazon that was once our backyard… I just wish I would’ve thought to get some better pics to really give you the full “before & after” perspective!

More Bushes...

More IVY…

... More Bushes

… More IVY

More Bushes

Overgrown Bushes (before)

Backyard

After!

Hello, Sprinkler System!

Hello, Sprinkler System! Found You!

Once the ivy was cut back, we discovered all this extra yardage! But any grass that once was in now dead n' gone!

Once the ivy was cut back, we discovered all this extra yardage!
But any grass that once was is now dead n’ gone

Why is this fence chain-link instead of matching the others? #disappointed

Why is this fence chain-link instead of matching the others? #disappointed

What's left of the grass....

What’s left of the grass…. #postIVYtakeover

Beneath the ground covering was this nice retaining wall!

Beneath the ground covering was this nice retaining wall!

Z's Playgrounds

Z’s Playgrounds

Starting to actually look and feel like a quarter acre! It was just hiding under a bushel! heehee

Starting to actually look and feel like a quarter acre! It was just “hiding under a bushel”

It's hard to believe my grandparents did all that work nearly by themselves!

It’s hard to believe my grandparents did all that work nearly by themselves!

Thanks Gpa & Gma!!! You REALLY outdid yourselves!!!

This is what happens when a house is abandoned by its previous owners and then the bank decides they don't want to keep up on landscaping!

FRONT YARD
This is what happens when a house is abandoned by its previous owners and the bank stops landscaping once the house is sale-pending! #FIELDofFLOWERS

This Tree: Marked for Deletion

Awkward Tree: Marked for Deletion

Another view of the awkward tree (left)

Another view of the awkward, partially dying tree (left)

These Bushes (3 of them) marked for deletion

Overgrown BEE-BUZZING Bushes: (3 of them) also Marked for Deletion
Oh and notice the rampant grass covering the flower bed…

As you can see in this listing photo, the 3 BEE-BUZZING bushes I speak of are so large they nearly cover the walkway and front windows!

As you can see from this real estate listing, the 3 BEE-BUZZING bushes I speak of were so large they nearly covered the front door and window!
(Not to mention the patio and walkway)

I'm assuming these weeds are growing over what used to be a flower garden?

Deciding where to plant this beautiful Pink Magnolia Tree,
a gift from Ben Farley of Genesis Realty!

Break Time! It wouldn't be a 4th of July Work Party without a picnic style lunch, complete with Red Solo cups! #itstimetoparty #getinmybelly

Break Time!
It wouldn’t be a proper Work Party w/out a picnic style lunch, complete with Red Solo cups! #itstimetoparty #getinmybelly

Lunch

My, has my brother changed a LOT in a year!

Lunch Time Entertainment Sponsored By: THESE HARD-WORKING ANTS!

This ant was carrying a daddy-long-leg UP the awning post!

This ant was carrying a daddy-long-leg UP the awning post!

This ant was trafficking a bug much larger than he!

This ant was trafficking a bug much larger than he!

Carrying creatures 3-times their size… marching one after another… I suppose we should’ve been more concerned about WHERE these busy carpenters were going!?!?

Lexie playing with her new pet insect of some sort;)

Lexie playing with her new pet insect of some sort;)
It’s hard to believe I have a lil’ sis this young sometimes! She’s 6 in this pic… ME, 26!

Its hard to

This was my J. 4th #OOTD... Apparently I documented this to remind myself of how little OUTDOOR work I did?!? I spent most of my working hours indoors doing things like this... (see below)

This was my J. 4th #OOTD…
Apparently I documented this to remind myself of how little OUTDOOR work I did?!?
I spent most of my time inside doing housework and things like this… (see below)

Tediousness I ran out of 2

Tediousness
I ran out of 2″ tape and had to switch to 1″…
so now all the stripes appear to be different widths but I PROMISE they were not!

And back outside…

Look at the SIDE-BY-SIDE comparison! He was at his halfway point here!

^ Dirty | Clean ^
Look at the SIDE-BY-SIDE comparison! He was at his halfway point here! #progress

The neighbor came over and offered us his tiller when he saw all the commotion! Made the job MUCH easier for my main man!

Tilling

Nothin’ HOTTER! #tillin’

The house looks so much BIGGER now that you can seeeeeee it!

Now that’s bettuhhh!
The house looked so much BIGGER now that you could seeeeeee it!
#progress

Front Yard

Now, to just get it GREEN!

Front Yard

Can you see the tree? We decided to plant our baby magnolia (aka

Can you see the tree?
We decided to plant our baby magnolia (aka “our love tree”) in the front corner of the yard

Front View

We ended the long day with a BBQ at my parent’s house…where my son pretended to get beat up by his MUCH smaller female cousin, Tylyn ;0

To think that we will soon be able to take this pic with the two NEW cousins! #procreating

To think that we will soon be able to take this pic with the two NEW cousins! #procreating

The next day…

Let's just say, the next day I took it easy... REAL EASY! Celebrated Zekiel's 9 mo with a new Harajuku Mini Outfit, relaxed in the perfect not-too-hot / not-too-cold weather, and sipped a free venti iced coffee!

Let’s just say, we took it easy… REAL EASY!

The next day we celebrated Zekiel’s 9 mo with a trip to Target to buy this new Harajuku Mini outfit, relaxed in the perfect not-too-hot / not-too-cold weather, and sipped a free venti iced coffee!
“Ahhhhh, it feels good to get in a good day’s work!”

Hope you enjoyed this Thursday throwback! It’s time for me to go get ready for our big day of July 4th mattress sale shopping, a family BBQ, then we’ll spend the evening out at Fort Vancouver!

#celebrateFREEDOM!

-B