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Category "Birthday"

Wedding Coffee Table Photo Books

When I planned my dream wedding, I tried my hardest not to overspend. It’s sooo easy to do. So I found creative ways to cut costs (like doing my own flower arrangements) or just eliminated things (like renting a limo).  But one area where I was willing to pay top dollar for top quality was my wedding photography.

Wedding Coffee Table Photo BookI knew that I would have only have my memories and the photographs by which to remember all of the special moments that happened that day.

The moment when he first saw me in my wedding dress.
The moment when we shared our personalized wedding vows.
The moment when my best friend made me cry with her funny and heartwarming toast.
The moment when I “dropped it like it’s hot” on the dance floor – still in my wedding dress – with my champagne glass held high above my head.

Memories fade over time but my wedding photographs never will – thanks to digital copies!

My talented wedding photographer Kristen Edwards did an amazing job capturing all of  the details, the people, and the emotions that made up my wedding day. Kristen ended up providing me with a CD filled with nearly 800 beautiful photos – and she was able to make me look damn good in almost every one. God bless her and Photoshop!

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Ordering the 25th Wedding Anniversary Special at Sonic

My husband and his best friend, Curtis have been friends since they were 16 years old. They played on their high school tennis team and were known to be pretty salty players. They even won a state championship in doubles their senior year. When Curtis started dating Susan, the four of us became best friends.

kiss me frog cookie jarCurtis and Susan’s daughters were planning a 25th wedding anniversary for their parents and asked if Randy and I would “distract” them while guests were arriving to their parents’ home.

Through the years, the four of us have celebrated birthdays and anniversaries together by going out to eat. So Randy and I made plans to take them out for a 25th wedding celebration dinner. That way it wouldn’t look suspicious.

Susan wanted to know what to wear and I told her the place we were going was a surprise but to wear their Sunday best. Afterwards, we would return to their home to change into more comfortable clothes for the second event of the evening.

That gave us a reason to go back to the house! Continue Reading

Birthday Card Blitz | 80 Cards for 80 Years

- - Anniversary, Birthday

My mother was turning 80 years old. After 80 birthdays, how could we make this a unique birthday for her?

80-cards-for-80th-birthday-gift-idea-sunburst-giftsI came up with the idea of family and friends sending her birthday cards. That’s nothing new, but for that thoughtful twist the goal was for her to receive 80 cards by her 80th birthday! My brother and I called family and friends to put the birthday card blitz in action.

If you have been following my blog, you know my mother was deaf and I’m all about giving her gifts that are visual experiences. Like the year I popped out of a box.

On another birthday, I treated her and several of her deaf friends to a local diner that cooked fried chicken, mashed potatoes and green beans just like her mother, my Grandma, used to cook. Afterwards, I took them all to the Science Museum Oklahoma for fun hands-on-experiences. Mom and her friends loved her birthday party!

Mom knew my boss and several of my co-workers so I purchased birthday cards ready with stamps so all they had to do was to address the envelope, sign the card, and mail it. I asked my co-workers, who my mother didn’t know, to wish Mom a Happy 80th Birthday anyway. So that there was a connection, I requested they write in the card they worked with me and something nice about me – anything that would thrill a mother to read about her daughter.

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Instant Photobooks Delivered Monthly | Groovebook

Click. Click. Click. With the camera on our smartphones, we can quickly capture any moment with ease. Many of of us have hundreds of photos stored in our phones.

instant-photobooks-groovebook2-sunburst-giftsBesides the ones you’ve shared on social media, most of the photos you’ve taken on your phone have probably never been seen by another human being. That’s too bad!

You also probably don’t get many of them printed either. Heck no! That would be waaaay too expensive!

Or is it?

What if I told you that you could print 100 photos from your phone each month and have it shipped to you in a keepsake photobook for just $2.99? That’s the total price. No tax. No shipping and handling.

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“I Love You” Jar Filled With Handwritten Notes

During a family reunion this summer, my family wanted to let my Grandma Anna Marie (our amazing matriarch) know just how much we love her and to thank her for bringing the whole family together. I came up with the idea to surprise her with an “I Love You” Jar.

jar and notes written on leaf-shaped paper

Fill any container with handwritten notes to create a sweet and sentimental “I Love You” jar gift.

I bought a beautiful glass jar (this one happened to be made of mercury glass) and some die-cut paper in the shape of leaves. The leaves represent our family tree.

During the family reunion when my Grandma was out of earshot, I asked everyone – even the little kids – to write Grandma Anna Marie handwritten notes on the leaves that said something along the lines of:

  • I love you because…
  • I remember when…
  • Because of you…
  • Thank you for…

That was just to get them started because really they could write anything that conveyed “I Love You.”

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Like Father Like Son | Rain Gauge for Birthday Gift

Why would anyone want a rain gauge? You can Google the rain fall in your area to find out. Do you want to know the answer? It’s because we become our parents.

My husband, Randy, is just like his dad. He talks, walks, thinks and laughs just like him. So it is no wonder he likes the same things as his dad. I just didn’t see it coming!

rain-gauge-birthday-gift-idea-sunburst-gifts

Click to enlarge

When we first started dating, Randy’s great sense of humor attracted me! His mother is funny too so I thought he got his sense of humor from her but through the years I saw glimpses of my father-in-law’s humor. Looks like Randy got it from both of his parents!

Randy’s dad was a “thinker.” He would mull around on a problem for as long as it takes and when he figured it out in his mind, he would fix the problem. Once! That’s it – no do overs.

When we were younger, it would drive the entire family crazy because some of his projects took so long to complete but in the end it was done perfectly. These are the things I see in Randy. He’s a thinker too.

Randy’s dad became our family’s weatherman since he followed the weather and would tell us how much it had rained by using his E-Z Read Jumbo Rain-Gauge
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Painting of Childhood Home Brings to Life Cherished Memories

I bet you can remember in great detail your childhood home.

canvas painting of a two story houseFor me, I still remember the wallpaper design in each room. The texture of our brown couch where I spent hours reading my Nancy Drew novels. The large crack that ran across the width of my bedroom door for which I have my younger brother and a very sturdy chair to thank for creating.

Every time one of my siblings visits our hometown of Enid, Oklahoma, we always drive by our childhood home. It’s a magnet that draws us.

With one look at that two-story beige house with its wide front porch, the flood gates open to our childhood memories. We see the windows but what we’re really seeing are the many family events that took place behind those windows.

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Thank You Card AKA Birthday Card

I received a call from my son’s friend, telling me Dustin’s friends were throwing him a last minute surprise birthday party. I had 45 minutes to get ready, call my husband home, and drive across town. There was absolutely no time to purchase a birthday card if we wanted to arrive on time.

thank-you-card-aka-birthday-card-gift-idea-sunburst-giftsI rifled through my drawer full of cards. (You have a drawer like that at home, right?) No birthday card. Panic sets in. I’m his mother. I can’t show up without a birthday card for my own son!

I noticed a thank you card. I thought, “Aha! This will do!”

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The Big 1-0 | Happy 10th Birthday Gift

Growing up, I could not wait to turn 10 years old and thought it would never get here soon enough. I was so excited to have a two digit number, the big 1-0 for my Happy 10th Birthday! It was a big deal to turn 10. Even the word “ten” sounded so much older!

Happy-10th-Birthday-experience-gift-idea-sunburst-gifts

Click to enlarge

My nephew, Carson, was also excited about turning the big 1-0 this year so my sister-in-law, Lesa, and I brainstormed about giving him 10 different experiences for his Happy 10th Birthday gift.

We purchased gift cards or certificates to local arcades for mini-golf, laser tag, bowling, kayaking, zip line, and a gift card to McDonald’s. We placed all of the gift cards and gift certificates in a new wallet and placed a $10 bill inside.

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Gather the Family to Celebrate in a Limousine!

Besides being fancy and having seats that face each other, do you know what else is awesome about a limousine? It holds a LOT of people!

large family riding inside limousine

The adults will have just as much fun as the kids riding around town in a limo!

My co-worker Sandra took advantage of all that space and coordinated an eight-hour limousine excursion for her parents, her brother, her other brother and his wife and their two sons, and her own husband, son, and herself. That’s a total of 10 people!

They had a lot of reasons to celebrate – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, her father turning 75 years old, and her parents’ 50th wedding anniversary!

One by one the limousine picked them up at their houses and drove them to Bricktown in Oklahoma City. Sandra’s parents hadn’t been there in years, not since it’s revitalization into a popular dining and entertainment district.

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