Monday, September 21, 2015

DIY Monday: JAE‘s Sip and See on a budget

It's been a long time since I did a DIY Monday post. I love DIY and wish I had more time to let my creativity shine but between full time work outside the home, caring for 2 young kids and and pumping every 3 to 4 hours, I barely have any time to do DIY items let alone post about them. However, I did a few for JAE's Sip and See a few weekends ago.
I had to keep it simple, on a budget and not too time consuming. I'm happy with the way everything turned out.
With 2 young kids, we have to stay on a budget so most of the DIY items took into account the cost. This of course meant that I had to do a lot of the stuff but it was all a labor of love.

The afternoon before the event, I realized I didn't have any signs for JAE so I decided to make a few to put around the house. I used Microsoft Word to write out the letters of JAE's name in colored letters. Then J printed them out on a colored printer. 
I already had the rest of the items at home. I got a roll of wrapping paper, a pair of scissors, ribbon, a pen and a stapler.

First I cut the letters into rounds. I drew the circles around each letter using Microsoft word so I could use it as a cutting guide.

Then I cut out each letter.

Next, I used my ruler and pen and drew triangles on the wrapping paper then cut them out.

Then stapled the letters to the triangles.

I stapled each triangle to the ribbon.

And here is the finished product. I get my wrapping paper from the dollar store. Why spend more on expensive ones that will be ripped off and trashed?
I used 2 rolls of wrapping paper and was able to make 3 of these. Overall cost (including ribbon and paper, was approximately $5 for 3 signs.

For the sweets table, I made a batch of some chocolate chip and peanut butter cookies. But I wanted it loaded so I added some of the real stuff. It was semi-homemade though given my time constraints. Afterall, there's only so much I can do when hubby is not home and I have both kids and a pump schedule to maintain.

The bags of M&Ms and Reeses were $3.99 each. I ended up only using about 3/4 of each bag in the batch so I just added what was left to the cake mix :-).

These boxes of cookies were awesome! I got a solid 60 cookies from each box. Its a double batch box and definitely a good party size. The box cost $2.98 at Walmart. Definitely a great buy.

Next, I made some cupcakes. Basically, I made a box of chocolate cupcakes and another of vanilla. Kept it simple. Each box was $1.99. 

I left it all to cool down overnight. 

JAE kept me company while I baked. I enjoyed the company but had to keep moving her hands cause she kept trying to reach for everything. Oh and homegirl isn't exactly a light weight. Can't believe her pediatrician said she is in the 13th percentile for weight. She sure felt heavier when I had her on while baking. 

The next day, it was time to frost the cake. This was all done with JAE strapped on to me (baby wearing momma here) while JOE and J went to pick up J's brother for the festivities and also ran some errands. 

Another semi-homemade item. I got frosting from Walmart. This cost of the frosting was $2.59 each.

Then I got some decorative sugar for the the cupcakes. This was $3.99. I only needed one and didn't even get through half of it.

I also got some frosting tips from Walmart. I didn't get a bag so I used a large ziploc bag and cut a tiny hole in the corner then inserted the tip. 

To hold it up, I put it in a measuring cup. This also helped ensure that the frosting didn't get everywhere. 

Then I applied the frosting to each cupcake. They aren't perfect but I think they turned out OK. I then sprinkled the colored sugar on each one.

I found the cutest little plastic teddy bear picks at the dollar store so I stuck them in each cupcake.

Sweets table complete. Total cost for cupcakes and cookies? Approximately $30. We had about 50 people at the party so this was definitely worth it.

For food, I made chicken wings. These are always a hit and are just so easy to make. I used thyme, parsley, a little bit of curry powder, seasoned salt, garlic powder and some dried hot pepper powder. I add the bag of frozen chicken from walmart ($10.98) to a big pot with some water and the ingredients. I then cook it for 30-minutes. 
Then I sprayed a big plan with cooking spray, added the chicken into the pan and sprayed the chicken before putting it into the oven. I also added some of the broth from the chicken to keep it moist. I baked it at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes.

Next, I made some sticky meatballs. This was another easy one to do. Put a bag of frozen meatballs ($5.99) in a crockpot, add 3/4 of a jar of grape jelly, add 1/8 cup of Frank's red hot sauce, 3/4 bottle of honey BBQ sauce and let it cook on high for approximately 2-hours. Taste to make sure it is done before serving. 

For the mini smokies ($4.99 each. I made 2 bags), I used the remaining 1/4 of the honey BBQ sauce and 1/8 cup of Frank's red hot sauce. Then baked in the oven for 30-minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Since this is a Sip and See, we made sure to invite kids as well. To ensure it was going to be fun, we got a bounce house using Groupon. We found an awesome deal for $140 for 8-hours. SCORE! It was definitely a big hit with the kids. 

J grilled up some burgers and hot dogs as well. 

It was a very fun time and we really enjoyed welcoming our friends and family to our home to meet JAE. 

We hope to do another celebration with our friends this Fall. Perhaps a "Harvest Party" or "Christmas Toy party" where we collect toys for kids in need. I'm still working on the logistics but for now, we are so very grateful for the love, gifts and support given to us by our friends and family. 
I am thankful to God for each and every one of the people he has placed in our lives. We feel very blessed.


  1. This truly looks like a labor of love. We all enjoyed those treats for sure :)

  2. All the food looked so delicious and that was a great diy sign for Jae. I love using dollar store supplies to cut costs, too. :)


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