Category Archives: Celebrations

How to Celebrate LEON Day! (6/25)

How to Celebrate LEON Day

Happy LEON Day! Leon is “Noel” spelled backwards and Leon Day, June 25, marks the halfway point to Christmas…just 6 more months!

Here are some ideas of how to make Leon Day special!

1. Celebrate a mini-Christmas: Get out some of the Christmas decorations, Santa hats, and Christmas books, movies, and music, put on those Christmas jammies and ugly holiday sweaters and get into the Christmas Spirit a little early this year!
(The easiest way to do this is to get some cheap, tacky Christmas decorations on clearance after the holidays and stash them in their own little box just for this occasion!)

2. Christmas Luau: To really celebrate a summer Christmas, have a Christmas Luau! Use silk poinsettia flowers in your hair, tinsel garland for leis and grass skirts, and hula away to Mele Kalikimaka.

Mele Kalikimaka Hawaiian Christmas Party @ Lynlee’s Petite Cakes
Also featured here

Mele Kalikimaka Christmas Freebie Tag @ Loralee Lewis

Tips on Hosting a Hawaii Theme Christmas Party!
Planning a Hawaiian Christmas Luau

3. Have a backwards day:
Since Leon is “Noel” spelled backwards you can have a backwards day.
(You can incorporate this with the Christmas stuff or do it alone.)
A few backwards ideas:
*Write backwards, read backwards
*Wear your shirt/clothes backwards
*Walk backwards, talk backwards, sing backwards
*Turn the furniture backwards or sit backwards in your chairs
*Backwards meals:
-Serve breakfast for dinner or serve dessert first.
-Set the dinner table with all of the plates, cups and utensils upside down or backwards (cups where plates would go, etc.)
-Serve food in a glass and drinks in a bowl or on a plate?! (Messy!)
-Sit on the floor and eat off of your chair.

How do you celebrate LEON day with your family? Let me know in the comments!
Enjoy LEON day and I can’t wait to see you back here
in about 5 months for some great Christmas posts!

How to Celebrate LEON Day

*Originally posted on June 25, 2011



Celebrate 11-11-11 this Friday

Friday is 11-11-11! Start celebrating at 11:11am (and keep it up until 11:11pm if you’re a real party animal) and check out the following link for ideas on how to celebrate the day.

11 Ways to Make the 11th Magical

Here are some crafts and activities involving numbers that you may want to incorporate into your celebration.
*Number Buddies: Number One Craft: @ dltk-teach

*Number 1 and Circles: @ Our Crafts N Things

*One Red Circle: @ Our Crafts N Things

*Number Portrait: @ First Palette
Compose a portrait using the digits 1 to 7 in this numbers-themed craft. This would definitely be more challenging only using 1’s! You could maybe throw 2 and 0 in there for 2011, or simply use numbers 1-11 instead of stopping at 7 😉

I’m in a bit of a creative slump right now, so if you have more ideas on how to celebrate the 11th let me know in the comments!

Coolest Family on the Block is committed to helping you find creative ways to have fun and make memories with your family all year-long. Don’t miss an idea, tip, or trick…subscribe and have updates sent directly to your email!

Our Wedding

Today is mine and Cool Daddy’s 8th wedding anniversary.
(We were married June 21, 2003 for those of you who can’t do the math ;))
You can read more about us here:
*How I Met Cool Daddy: Part 1
*How I Met Cool Daddy: Part 2
*15 Reasons Why My Hubby is Awesome
*Colonel Mustard on a Rollercoaster with a Plastic Fork

I went all out for our wedding. Cool Daddy was perfectly happy to let me do (and spend ;)) whatever I wanted and tell him a date, time, and place to show up. While there were definitely some stressful moments, some venue mishaps, weather concerns, hair woes, and flower drama…for the most part my mom and I really enjoyed planning my wedding. I didn’t end up with absolutely everything exactly the way that I wanted it, but all-in-all I think our wedding was fabulous and I have no regrets about “going big”. I didn’t have a fairytale wedding…I had a royal wedding. Or as close to one as you can get in Beaver County, PA 😉

You’re going to see quite a few pictures of me before we even get to the one photo of my hubby…but isn’t the wedding all about the pretty girl anyway? 😉

(Click on photos to enlarge)

My sister primps my hair and then puts a sixpence penny in my shoe.
Yes, I actually wore it inside of my shoe the whole time!

I love this picture of me and my mama 🙂

Putting on my veil and showing off my pearl necklace.

On my mama’s front porch.

My hunky hubby-to-be 🙂

Me and my sister and hubby with his brother.

My cousins were the flower girl and ring bearer.
I chose the pomanders rather than a basket. The flower girl hid a bag of petals behind the pomander and this is where she drew the red rose petals from to drop.

For the ring box I chose one shaped like a carriage that was made out of two quail eggs. I didn’t realize that this was the only photo of the ring box that I had. Here it is cropped for a closer look:

I actually found a photo of the ring box online here.

I was very into the details of the wedding. The funny thing was that I was so afraid that the guys that would be handling the ring box to get the rings in and out would break the egg shells, that we actually had the best man keep the rings in a box in his pocket the whole time. So the ring box ended up just being a front anyway.

A string quartet for the ceremony.
Pachelbel’s Canon in D for the bridal party.
The traditional “Here Comes the Bride” for me.

I walked down a very long aisle.
I wasn’t even halfway down when this picture was taken.

Hubby watching me walk down the aisle realizing how very spoiled I am lucky he is.

We had an outdoor ceremony in the gardens of an extinct Utopian community, Old Economy Village.

The guests had bubbles and the wedding party threw red rose petals while our carriage with white horses awaits.

Hubby looks like he’s carting me off to prison rather than escorting me. He also sounded like he was reading me my rights during our vows…I sounded like I was reciting an eloquent graduation speech. Not a lot of heart-felt teary-eyed stuff during our vows…we are robots.

The carriage ride was awesome. We rode down the streets and everyone stopped to look at us and we waved our best royal wave. A mother was walking with her two daughters and I heard one of them yell, “Mommy, she looks like Cinderella!”
I’d love to do that about once a week 😉

This was actually the aisle that I was supposed to walk down, but I knew that my gown wouldn’t fit, so we had them set up the chairs on the other side of the garden where my gown would have more room to breath 🙂

The bridal party.

For a photo like this the photographer would usually have the bridal party jump off of a step which would put everyone at about the same height, but we didn’t have any stairs available. I couldn’t jump at all without losing my dress so hubby and I stayed put.
I love how weird this photo is.
(You’re definitely going to want to click (twice) to enlarge this and check out all the great facials expressions!)

The reception venue: The Timberhouse at Rolling Acres Golf Course

This is a view from where hubby and I sat at the head table.
Our fancy champagne glasses that form a heart when they’re pushed together 🙂
The bells were the wedding favor…more on that later.
To the right of the glasses you can see my handkerchief. My grandmother crocheted old lace onto a new handkerchief and then tied it together with my mom’s wedding handkerchief. Something old, something new, something borrowed. My something blue was a blue ribbon on the garter that my mom made for me with my great-grandmother’s lace (more old). I had plenty of new: my necklace, my earrings, my tiara, my handkerchief, my shoes, and of course my gown.

The topiaries above were the centerpieces on every other table, the remaining table had wreaths and hurricane lamps shown below. Believe it or not we’ve gotten a lot of use out of all of the topiaries and wreaths. There are a few in Adaline’s nursery, we’ve used them as centerpieces for tea parties and I sometimes use them to decorate at Christmas.

Our wedding favors were silver bells. We attached everyone’s table number to their bell along with a little poem that I wrote about how to use the bells:
We all remember traditions past, to see them kiss you clink the glass.
But new traditions work as well, to see them kiss just ring the bell!

The cookie table…’cause that’s just how we roll 😉
(Yeah, I have a big Italian family. Mangia!)

Cutting the cake. We used our wedding cake knife to cut Adaline’s 1st birthday cake and have used it for each of our birthdays since then, it’s one of my favorite new traditions.

The cake was white with raspberry filling. It was covered in fondant with gumpaste flowers.

The detail on the cake mimicked the detailed beadwork on my gown.
(Click the photo twice to enlarge it and see the detail.)

Our first dance to Nat King Cole’s “Unforgettable”.

Ironically, my husband always asks me, “What was our wedding song again?” and I always answer, “Seriously? You couldn’t be more ironic right now. Did you seriously forget? How could you forget our wedding song?!” Oh well. The song didn’t hold any special meaning for us, I’ve just always liked it.

In case you were wondering…I can still rock a mean Electric Slide in a ball gown.

My throw-away bouquet was a break-away bouquet. We’ve all seen the “America’s Funniest Home Video” clips of single ladies fighting each other for a bouquet. Mine was a bunch of single flowers tied together with one special rose in the middle with a ribbon tied around it. While my back was turned to the girls, I untied the flowers so that when I tossed the bouquet individual flowers went everywhere and several girls picked up a flower. The lucky girl to get the rose with the ribbon is the one who will get the garter.

The garter was actually caught by my then-10-year-old cousin Ben, who snatched it up using a slick slide-on-the-knee move 😉
He placed the garter on the lady’s arm rather than her leg for a more pg version!

And here are some more photos of me, just because I’m pretty 🙂

Happy 8th Anniversary, Hubby! I love you!

On a side note today at 12:15pm Cool Daddy and I are going for an ultrasound to check and see how things are progressing with our little bean and to see if there’s perhaps more than one in there 😉

Photography: Brad Allan at Redford Photography Canonsburg, PA
Cake: Carol Decanini at Carol’s Cakes Aliquippa, PA
Ceremony Venue: Old Economy Village Ambridge, PA
Reception Venue: The Timberhouse at Rolling Acres Golf Course Beaver Falls, PA
Bride’s Gown: St. Pucchi by Rani

Coolest Family on the Block is committed to helping you find creative ways to have fun and make memories with your family all year-long. Don’t miss an idea, tip, or trick…subscribe and have updates sent directly to your email!

Hot Air Balloon Crafts and Snacks

The first hot air balloon flight was on June 5th 1783. I’ve never been on a hot air balloon ride due to my irrational fear of heights, still I thought that I’d share a few hot air balloon crafts, snacks, and activities I found around the web so that you can celebrate in style (safely…on the ground where the good Lord intended us to be 😉 )!

50+ Hot Air Balloon Snacks and Crafts

June 5th is also National Gingerbread Day, so I think that some Hot Air Balloon shaped Gingerbread cookies are in order! Use this gingerbread recipe to make the hot air balloon cookies below.

Hot Air Balloons Cookies, Cakes, and Cupcakes
*Hot Air Balloon Cookies: @ Betty Crocker

*How to decorate a hot air balloon cookie five different ways:
@ Wonder How To Video tutorial

*Hot Air Balloon Cake: @ Woman’s Day

*Hot Air Balloon Birthday Cake: @

*Balloon Cupcakes: @ Family Fun

*Disney/Pixar UP Cakes: @ Family Fun

*Hot Air Balloon Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes: @ Kids Spot

*Hot Air Balloon Snack: @ Making Learning Fun

*Hot Air Balloon Games: @ Kiwi Families

Hot Air Balloon Crafts
*Project #84: Hot Air Balloon: @ bloesem kids

*Hot Air Balloon Blow Painting: @ Teach Preschool

*DIY Hot Air Balloon Greeting Cards: @ The Crafting Chicks

*Paper Lantern Hot Air Balloon: @

*Hot Air Balloon Craft: @ Free Kids Crafts

*How to Make a Mini Flyable Hot Air Balloon with Candles:
@ WikiHow

*Wrapping Paper Hot Air Balloons: @ Show Kids the Fun

*A Ballooning Craft: @ Sparkling Adventures

*Hot Air Balloon: @ Ramblings of a Crazy Woman

*How to Draw Hot Air Balloons: @ Draw While You Learn

*Hot Air Balloon Craft: @ Inspired Kids

*Hot Air Balloons: @ Preschool Storytime Crafts

*Hot Air Balloon Festival Craft: @

*Things in the Sky Craft: @ Flaming Imp

*Hot Air Balloon: @ Sprout Online

*Hot Air Balloon Craft: @ Sprout Online
Free template included

*How to Make a Hot Air Balloon Craft:
by Craft Club @ Video

*Hot Air Balloon Crafts: @
*Plastic Bag Hot Air Balloon: @ Show Kids the Fun

Hot Air Balloon Free Printable
Coloring and Activity Sheets

*Free Printable Hot Air Balloon Father’s Day Card: @ Kaboose

*Hot Air Balloon Crafts: @ First-School
Hot Air Balloon Color and Shapes Activity, Hot Air Balloon Trace by the Color and Decorate

*Free Printable Hot Air Balloon Coloring Sheets:
@ Coloring Book Fun
10 to choose from! Warning: Lots of pop-ups!

*Hot Air Balloon Coloring Page: @ Activity Coloring Pages

*Balloon Craft: @ DLTK’s Holiday Activities for Kids
Balloon template free printable

Papier Mache Hot Air Balloons
*Paper Mache Hot Air Balloon: @ The Imagination Tree

*Papier Mache Hot Air Balloon: @ First Palette

*Papier Mache Hot Air Balloons: @

*Make a Papier Mache Hot Air Balloon: @ York Blog

Tissue Paper Hot Air Balloons
*Tissue Paper Hot Air Balloon: @ Teaching Physics

*Tissue Paper Hot Air Balloon: @ Junior Balloonist

*Hot Air Balloon Tissue Paper Craft: @ I Can Teach My Child

Hot Air Balloon Mobiles
*Tutorial: Hot Air Balloon Mobile: @ Brown Accents

*Kid’s / Mommy Craft: Hot Air Balloon Mobile: @ Make It Lovely

*Floating Hot Air Balloons Craft: @

*Baby Mobile Hot Air Balloon: @ Fave Crafts

Hot Air Balloon Pinatas
*How to Make a Piñata: @ Family Fun

*How to Make a Paper Mache Pinata: @ Family Crafts

*How to Make a Pinata: @ Easy Party Ideas and Games

*Making a Hot Air Balloon Pinata: @ Suite 101

Hot Air Balloon Centerpieces
*A Lofty Table Topper: @ Family Fun
Jazz up your picnic with a utensil-holding hot-air balloon that really rises to the occasion.

*How to Make a Hot Air Balloon Centerpiece:
@ Meta Café Video tutorial

*Hot Air Balloon Candy Dish: @ Kim’s Kandy Kreations

*How to Make a Patriotic Hot Air Balloon Decoration:
@ Crafty Mates

Hot Air Balloon Party and Room Decorating Ideas
*Hot Air Balloon Room: @ Design Dazzle

*Up, Up, and Away Baby Shower: @ Project Nursery

*Hot air balloons theme decorating ideas: @ Marie’s Manor

*So Much Sweetness | Baby Shower Photography:
@ Simply Bloom Photography

*Hot Air Balloon Inspired Wedding Celebration: @ The Sweetest Occasion

*Vintage Travel Inspired Wedding Ideas:
@ The Sweetest Occasion

*Puffies Hot Air Balloon: @ KI Memories
You can see the rest of Maggie’s room here

*Hot Air Balloon Birthday Party: @ Steph Modo

Hot Air Balloon Costume
*Hot Air Balloon Costume: @ Family Fun

*Hot Air Balloon Costume: @ Family Fun
A finalist in the 6th Annual Costume Contest

*Hot Air Balloon Costume: @ Country Living

Have you tried any hot air balloon crafts?
Have you ever been on a hot air balloon ride?
Have you ever gone to a hot air balloon festival?
Tell me in the comments!

Click here for more weird holidays and celebrations!

For more link lists like this try:
*FREE April Fools Day Printable Pranks (Links)
*30+ April Fools Pranks to Play on Your Kids!
*April Fools Day Family Traditions
*50+ Free St. Patrick’s Day Printables
*Valentine’s Day Link Love – Free Printables, Crafts, and More!


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