Create The Best Circus Birthday Party Invites With Photo Props

It’s that time… Quinn will be ONE in less than two months. While I’m sitting here reflecting on how fast time has gone, I’m also mapping out the plans for the big event. He’s only going to turn one once and this is the last time I will celebrate a first birthday. It’s a big event, so why not make it THE MAIN EVENT?

I’m a huge fan of photo cards, whether it be in the form of invitations, announcements or thank you cards, I love the personal touch that a photo adds to paper goods. But not just any photo… If we’re going with a theme, I prefer to style the photo to match. But when you order photo cards, it’s best to plan at least two months in advance – possibly more if you’re hiring a professional photographer as each have their own schedules and turn around times. This preliminary time frame allows enough time for you to gather the photo props, take the photos, edit the photos (if needed), personalize the invites, order the invites and send them out – ideally three weeks prior to the event.

Tip: When styling photos, first evaluate what you have around the house, then make a list of items you can make yourself or purchase. If you are hiring a professional photographer for your photos, ask him or her if they have any photo props that can be used for your theme.

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Circus Photo Props

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Circus Photo Props for Birthday Parties by christina holt

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Styled photos can be taken almost anywhere. You can create a backdrop in your own home with the Pop and Lolli Big Top Circus Tent and place your child in a bucket (or in the colorful 4moms rockaRoo) or even on a decorated hat box in the foreground. The options are endless! Other creative options include going to the neighborhood petting zoo with your child dressed as a Ring Master or, like what we did, grab a toy bucket, some suspenders from the closet, colorful balls (to juggle with, of course), a stuffed elephant and a Moustache pacifier and go outside in the natural light.

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After uploading the pictures to Minted, I then select from the different photo cards to personalize the invites.

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Once the invites are saved and in my shopping cart, I can then focus on the party supplies.
Of course they coordinate with the personalized invites…

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Disclosure: This post is part of the sponsored #SocialCircus campaign.

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The Honest Company $500 Giveaway

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The Honest Company has certainly become one of the best brands in the baby business, but they are more than just a company selling diapers and wipes—they are helping families live better lives. Jessica Alba and her team have built a company that wants to do more than just offer clean and safe baby products. They want to make it easy for parents to choose better products and, by doing so, literally change the world. This is why we are so excited to have partnered with them for our #SocialCircus and love sharing their philosophy and products with you! This week we are giving away a $500 gift certificate to The Honest Company to one lucky winner!

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The Honest Company creates effective and unquestionably safe, beautiful and affordable non-toxic products for babies and homes. Their growing product line is comprised of eco-friendly diapers (with super stylish designs) and a natural line of bath, skincare, home cleaning and organic nutritional supplement products. They are all packaged in convenient bundles that can be customized, personalized and conveniently shipped whenever and wherever needed. And for every purchase, a donation is made to families in need.

Learn about all things Honest and exclusive giveaways by subscribing to their blog. You must enter your email address and verify your subscription after clicking the link.

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WIN IT!
One lucky winner will receive a $500 gift certificate to The Honest Company.

Social Circus Giveaway!
$500 to shop The Honest Company
Please enter through the Raflecopter widget below.

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*Terms: The prize winners must be U.S. or Canadian residents. Prize/credit must be redeemed at Honest.com. The prize/credit will expire in one year. The credit does not apply towards the purchase of gift cards. The prize/credit cannot be applied to previous purchases and cannot be redeemed for cash. Terms of the prize/credit are subject to change.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post in conjunction with the online Social Circus event.

How To Plan the Perfect Circus-Themed Nursery

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The typical circus theme is, and always will be, a classic when it comes to nursery design and inspiration for expectant parents. But where does one start? Pinterest is one of my first stops for inspiration and ideas on all things nursery design. After all, I created a Pinterest Board dedicated to Quinn’s nursery even before I found out he was a boy! By doing this, it helped me track and mark my favorites and kept them all in one spot. His nursery didn’t end up a circus theme (although, I did consider it once I saw this particular Pin). But for those of you looking to design a circus nursery, you can find and draw a lot of inspiration just from Pinterest. A great place to start is on the Project Nursery #SocialCircus Design Inspiration Pinterest Board.

I’m a visual person (which is why I adore Pinterest so much – it’s also why it took me so long to complete Quinn’s nursery), but no matter what your personality or how you plan and put together a room, it’s always a good idea to see your ideas side-by-side before you make a commitment – especially on the larger pieces. Naturally, for me, the next step is to piece together the items I want to purchase in one spot, like on Polyvore. By doing this step, you can get a pretty good idea as to how everything will look once it’s all pieced together.

Finally, to view what other parents have put together, and to gain inspiration from finished nurseries, visit projectnursery.com

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For a classic circus theme, it’s easy to accomplish this look with shades of red, yellow, black and white – along with fun pops of color to tie in your favorite accent pieces and artwork.

Here are my picks and inspirations to create the perfect Classic Circus Nursery.
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Circus Nursery

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A circus nursery doesn’t have to include the typical primary tones red and yellow… One of the hottest color combination trends for baby girl nurseries continues to be pink and aqua. But really, you can make the color theme your own based on your personal taste. For instance, how dreamy would a black, white and metallic circus theme be?

With this combination of the popular pink and aqua, create a more colorful and whimsical circus vibe with these beautiful colors along with coordinating brights and layers of fun – in the form of accents and decor.
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Baby Girl Pink and Aqua Circus Nursery
What would your circus nursery look like?
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Disclosure: This post is part of the #SocialCircus campaign. All opinions are my own.

My Life is a Circus

No, really.
I lovingly refer to my life as The Circus.
Because it is.

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It all started with one phone call from my mom at 7:45 AM one Tuesday morning.

My mom: Hey! Good morning! (Takes a nice long pause to leisurely sip her morning coffee – presumably while still in her pj’s and robe). How are you today?

Me: Mom. STOP KICKING YOUR BROTHER. Mom, we’re running late for… I SAID PLEASE STOP PULLING YOUR BROTHER’S HAIR… We’re running late for school. COME ON GUYS; PLEASE GET IN YOUR SEATS. Can I call you after I get The Circus to school? Ok. Thanks. Bye. Click.

Sometimes, when things get really out of control, I start singing the classic circus theme – duh duh duh duh duh duh duh, duh duh daaaaaa. It usually stops the kids dead in their tracks – or at least quiets them long enough for me to change the subject. As far as everyday life, you should see the looks I get as my kids pile out of my minivan one by one… all four of them. One day, the three oldest were standing by while I grabbed the baby from his car seat and a passerby actually asked me if there were more kids coming out of the car after. I laughed. And then when I say I have four kids – but not just four kids, four boys, I hear some variation of these nine questions and comments:

  1. Are you done?
  2. Please tell me you’re done.
  3. You are one away from a basketball team!
  4. Are you going to try for that girl?
  5. Oh, bless you.
  6. You must be tired.
  7. But you look so young to have four kids.
  8. That’s a lot of high energy, huh?
  9. How do you do it?

Sometimes I answer, sometimes I just laugh and nod and give the ‘you have no idea’ stare. That one usually scares them out of asking any further questions. It all just depends on my mood that day. But when I do answer, this is what I typically say in response to the above comments and questions:

  1. Yes, we are done.
  2. Oh yes, we are really done.
  3. Yep, but if you count my husband, we do have a team!
  4. I like being the Queen.
  5. Thank you. I think…
  6. Coffee.
  7. Thank you again. I’ll take that as a compliment.
  8. (Give the ‘you have no idea’ stare)
  9. But as far as how I do it?
    Sometimes I don’t even know. I just do. But my biggest suggestion on how to efficiently manage kids, a house and life can be answered with three words, The Honest Company.

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Why? Because we have monthly bundles delivered right to our front door and I save money on all the items we already need. For less than $20 a week, we have diapers and wipes delivered, which saves me a trip to the store with four kids (the ultimate sanity saver). For the baby, I get the Diaper and Wipes Bundle which includes a full month’s supply of diapers and wipes, but I typically order a few extra packs of wipes because I love them as much as I love coffee and use them for everything. Plus, they are the only wipes that don’t give my little sensitive Quinn a rash. When Quinn was a tiny baby, if there was ever a time I worried about running out of diapers, I simply logged into my Honest account online and changed the delivery to an earlier date (but I can honestly say that we have never run out of diapers). Same goes for now that he’s older. If I need to change the diaper size, add items to our order or if we have more diapers than we need, I can adjust, add additional items and/or push the delivery date in a matter of seconds. It’s so easy. And trust me, I need anything and everything that’s easy to be in my life.

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But the real reason why we love The Honest Company products the most? Oh, where do I begin? A big reason is that I’m not running around to multiple stores to find all of the eco-friendly products that we use on a daily basis.

But why Honest?

Because of their mission to make everything better, their goal to create a safer environment for children, their families and the planet, their involvement in giving back to communities, their products that not only look good, but are also amazing, their customer service and, of course, The Collective. The Collective is a genius collaboration between Honest and like-minded companies to create wholesome products to make life easier, safer and cleaner. Quinn’s current favorites are the Wooden Toys by Manny and Simon. The natural, non-toxic, handcrafted, made in the USA wooden toys encourage curiosity, development and imagination and are loved by our whole family. All of our children are naturally drawn to them and my husband and I appreciate their simple and modern design.

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Our family has been using Honest products for the past 11 months and I now have our orders down to a science. I highly recommend the bundle because it automatically saves you 35% on the products you already need. This is what I receive each month as part of our Diapers and Wipes Bundle:

  • 6 packs of diapers
  • 4 packs of wipes

I add on these items for the baby, as I need them, to keep them fully stocked at his changing station at all times:

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For the rest of the family and the house, the Essentials Bundle is a lifesaver for less than $40 for five products delivered to my door. Besides owning and using all of the household cleaners, soaps, laundry pods and the candle (that one’s for the rare occasion that I get to take a bath) these are my absolute favorite picks for our home:

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Yes, my life is a circus, but I wouldn’t trade my circus for the world. They definitely keep things entertaining and fun. After all, that’s what a circus is all about, right? A little bit of danger, a lot of excitement, a ton of energy and a massive amount of smiles. But at the end of the day, I’m so thankful for The Honest Company for providing us with safe, affordable and amazing products – and ones I don’t have to go out and buy with four kids in tow.

To celebrate the #SocialCircus, Honest is giving new customers $10 off a minimum purchase of $40 using the code Circus10off40. Limited to first-time orders and one per customer.
Expires April 14, 2014 at 11:59 PM PST.

And don’t forget to enter to win the #SocialCircus baby gear and essentials prize valued at over $3,500! Contest ends April, 14th!

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Disclosure: This post is sponsored by The Honest Company as part of the Social Circus campaign, but all opinions are my own. We buy and use their products on a monthly basis.

It’s a Social Circus! And you’re invited!

Join us for the entire month of April as we bring you the best and greatest Social Circus you have ever seen! All month long we will be bringing you helpful tips, tricks and prizes pertaining to topics such as nursery design, birthday parties, baby showers, baking, DIY, baby gear, parenting and much, much more.

Who are your ringleaders for this #SocialCircus?
I’m glad you asked!

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And now… Are you ready for the grand event to kick off all the fun? In the Big Top Arena we have over $3,500 in prizes for one very lucky circus goer.
(perhaps it could be you?)

So step right up and see what we have in store for you, but don’t walk as slow as an elephant, because you only have until April 14th, 2014 to enter this grand giveaway.

Check out these amazing prizes and don’t forget to enter below…

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  • $250 Gift Certificate to Minted
    With everything from baby announcements and party invites to nursery art and party decor, Minted is the place for gorgeous paper goods with lovely options like real foil pressed announcements and custom artwork. Their large collection of art from independent artists has something for everyone.
  • (1) Diapers & Wipes Bundle, (1) Essentials Bundle and one (1) Health & Wellness Bundle from The Honest Company
    The Honest Company prides themselves on creating safe and non-toxic products for your family—their growing line includes everything from eco-friendly diapers to cleaning products. Sign up for subscription bundles to get the products delivered to you at set intervals, and have we mentioned how cute their diaper designs are?
  • Sleepi Mini with Mattress & Conversion Kit to Sleepi Crib with Mattress by Stokke
    The Sleepi Mini is a real eye-catcher. The round, nest-like environment is a comfy spot for baby and a beautiful design statement in the nursery. Once your baby is older, convert to the Sleepi full-sized crib to keep your baby’s space familiar yet still growing with him or her.
  • Origami by 4Moms
    With features like a power self-fold, LCD screen, running lights, a built-in generator and the ability to charge your cellphone, this stroller is truly a modern marvel. Your baby will be strolling in a sweet ride with the Origami.
  • rockaRoo by 4Moms
    The rockaRoo changes up the baby swing game. In order to maximize the sensation of motion in your baby, it rocks in the same motion as a rocking horse. Its sleek design will look great in your home, and features like mp3 hookup and plug (meaning you never have to worry about running out of batteries) will keep babies happy, rocking their way to sleep.
  • Two-Piece Crib Bedding Set by Caden Lane
    Caden Lane has perfected the art of combining patterns and creating unique color palettes. Always on top of the current trends, Caden Lane’s bedding will look gorgeous in any nursery—boy, girl, traditional or modern.
  • Babycook Pro 2X by BEABA Cook
    Making your own baby food has never been easier with the Babycook Pro 2X. You can cook, puree and reheat baby’s food in the same machine. With twice the capacity, the Babycook Pro 2x allows you to cook double the amount of food, which is great for busy mamas.
  • Motorola MBP25 Video Baby Monitor & Binatone Movement Monitor Bundle Pack by Motorola
    The MBP25 Digital Wireless Video Baby Monitor allows you to keep an eye on baby even when you aren’t in the same room with a 2.4” full color LCD screen and infrared night vision. You can even talk to baby through the device. The movement monitor alerts you if baby’s movements stop or become irregularly slow.
  • Diaper Pail by Ubbi World
    You no longer have to worry about adding an ugly eyesore to your nursery with the addition of a diaper pail. The Ubbi Diaper Pail’s modern design comes in a variety of cool colors to complement your design and seamlessly blend into your baby’s nursery.
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Pop & Lolli
    The unique and whimsical fabric wall decals from Pop & Lolli immediately transform a room into a magical place. The non-toxic decals add fun and joyfulness to your child’s room. They are removable and repositionable.
  • Tiger Humidifier by Crane
    Whether your child has a cold, dry skin or you just want to add some moisture to the dry air, a humidifier offers a world of help. You don’t have to sacrifice your design to include one either; the adorable humidifiers from Crane are sure to put a smile on your little one’s face.
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Little Me
    Dressing up your baby is part of the fun of becoming a parent. With the clothes from Little Me, you will be able to create darling outfits that keep baby comfortable whether napping or having fun and exploring the world.

Enter to win this amazing grand prize valued at over $3500!
There will only be ONE winner and this contest is open to US and Canadian residents only.

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Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, but like always, all opinions are my own. I have been compensated for my participation in the #SocialCircus


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