Tuesday, November 26, 2013

ALL THINGS THANKSGIVING: menus, table settings, traditions, ideas for kids

*this is an updated re-post to keep MooreMinute's Thanksgiving Collection current

Happy Thanksgiving Time!  I grabbed a bunch of Thanksgiving prep ideas and put them into one little-big post!

Tie your apron on, 
work hard for a bit 
(because it's good to work hard!) ;) 
Live in beauty, 
gather with family, 
taste your blessings, 
and appreciate our abundance. 

Focusing on just a few details
creates unforgettable holidays,
wrapped with lots of love of course.

I put all the Thanksgiving ideas from my blog in one place...


A collection of traditional Thanksgiving food, full of homemade goodness.

 This menu is a healthy alternative for Thanksgiving!

This is the speedy, quick, halfway homemade menu.
This menu is ideal for kids helping in the kitchen!

A Thanksgiving Leftover menu,
Smashed Turkey Dinner Paninis


Don't forget the sweet little people with ideas here and here!
- kid's centerpiece and place settings
- kid's crafts
- Mayflower Bread Boats
-Turkey cups
-and more!

Visit the library to check out special Thanksgiving books to read!


We are starting a Thankful book,
one we can continue to add to each year
until we have all the pages filled over the years.


Setting the table for Thanksgiving is one of my favorite parts of this holiday!  Ever since I could remember I've gone crazy decorating tables.  I'm thankful that the world of blogging has helped me document them in photos now!

This past table is lined with white pumpkins and muted tones to add peace and lots of texture for the colder months.


This Thanksgiving table variation is accented with deep plum, the under-used color of fall.  The mustard colored plates are lined with farmhouse chicken wire chargers for a cozy, homey warmth.

This Thanksgiving table  included all the earthy, natural colors of the fall season: burnt rust, creams, and shades of browns.  I took a light plaid wool throw and used it as a table runner and then lined the table with wood dishes and wheat.  Our cozy plaid and wood harvest table !

Our Thanksgiving table last year was playful and kid-friendly because our entire family cooked the dinner together and set the table together.  This table had a kraft paper table cloth to write fun notes about what we were thankful for that year.

This year's bright and happy table!

I baked some yummy little pumpkin cream cheese squared muffins for Thanksgiving time treats this year too!


A couple years ago, our family five took a short vacation to Gateway, Colorado, through Thanksgiving.  It was truly, truly was one of our very favorite vacations we've ever done!  It topped even the big fancy VACAs.  The short Thanksgiving weekend we spent there was incredible.  Even the boys list it on their top favorite lists! 

You can read about our 
2011 getaway

And, because we had such an incredible time making a getaway out of Thanksgiving holiday,

 we did it last year too!  Last year we visited Sorrel River Ranch in Moab, Utah.

UPDATE!  We celebrated Thanksgiving 2013 in Gateway

Do you ever gather up your family and take off to relax for the holidays?  I'd love to hear where you go and how much you love it! :)  We are doing it again this Thanksgiving!  I'll be sharing details soon...

Enjoy this Thanksgiving IDEA collection!
I hope you celebrate 
grateful hearts, 
and the minutes of gathering together.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Vintage Bookstore 12th Birthday Party PART TWO

Cameron's Vintage Bookstore Birthday Party!


Again, trying not to confuse you all too much.  Here goes...  This year our oldest son turned 13 with a donut celebration!  LAST year, on his 12th birthday I threw him a book party at a vintage used bookstore, followed by a fall dinner picnic outside.  I NEVER posted any of those pictures.  Sometimes I do that.  Yep. Even though I share millions,  I still have files of pictures that I don't share because time slips away. However, I REALLY wanted to make a goal to share these photos because it was such a fun party with treasured moments!

A YEAR later, I'm sharing Cameron's 12th birthday celebration in photos and story.  He is our book lover, and October is an appropriate cuddle-up and read month,  so this was the ideal party theme.

Vintage Bookstore Birthday with a Fall Picnic

Part 2,
the party at the bookstore

(see part 1 too: Boxed Soup Dinner Picnic)

Our oldest son, Cameron, is your classic nose-in-a-book, chess playin' kinda kid.  He loves and appreciates books more than most anything else.  He is the child missing from the room, only to be found underneath the table, lost in a book, the one who started reading Classics before he was 10, and the child who sits over your shoulder, trying to read whatever you're reading along with you.  

It only made sense for his 12th birthday party THEME to be books!  I found a little used bookstore, insulated with books, that smelled like an ancient library to host his party at.  It was called "Twice Upon a Time".  Charming name.

Inside this vintage bookshop were rows of story books, old Persian rugs sprawled on the floor, and a few mismatched pieces of antique furniture. 

It was a quiet birthday party on a cozy fall day.  Boys dressed in their warm party sweaters, ready to discover books, celebrations, and cake.

I found a hidden nook to set up our family party gathering.  I used their antique furniture for our table and chairs and I used the bookshelves for a perfectly decorated backdrop. 

I wanted the party colors to mirror the color tones of the inside of book pages: antique white, black, and neutrals.  

I used classic books as decor.

Birthday candles hanging...

And I lit candles on top of random stacks of books.  The candles were wrapped in book pages.

For snacks, I made cones out of book pages and filled them with chocolate covered almonds.

I also made itty bitty books to use as food labels and created fun play on words for candy:

"Reading makes you Smarties" for Smarties candies


"Cozy Bookworm" for gummy worms.

I made more itty bitty books and scattered them about the party decor:

Another element of the party decor was a chalkboard photo timeline of Cameron's life in storybook form.  I always love to add personal photos to party decor.

For party favors, I made simple bookmarks, again using the color theme of the b&w tones of the inside of books.  Each bookmark had the guest's initial and under that was a famous quote about reading.

For ALL birthdays, I love to incorporate their gifts into the party theme and decor!  Someday I'll do a blog post all about that! The boys' gifts always match their party theme and I use the gifts as part of the decor too.  We gave Cameron this hardback classic, creatively wrapped in bookprint:

My parents gave the "slam dunk" gift to match this party theme! They gave Cameron a Kindle.  He was in love and so excited!

I baked a homemade three layer brown sugar cake with a caramel topping for his birthday cake.
 Recipe via Martha Stewart Living

Make a wish, or 12...

Brown sugar layered goodness

Unlike most parties, this was a VERY quiet party.  After gifts and cake, the boys wandered around the bookshop and got lost in stories.

And no, NONE of these photos were staged!  Just total adorable moments. ;)

We did have some silly fun, trying on reading glasses too!

It was a very Happy 12th Birthday for our
favorite bookworm.

Don't forget to see PART ONE of this party: 
Fall Picnic Boxed Soup Dinner

   Pin It
This post is linked to: Under the Table & DreaminNifty Thrifty,  Made by You MondayMet Monday, Tuesday Tutorials and TipsHOMEWORK: Be InspiredTip JunkieGet Your Craft OnWorks for Me WednesdaySnap CreativityOrganize and Decorate EverythingTransformation ThursdayTablescape ThursdayStrut Your Stuff36th AveFoodie FridayI'm Lovin ItTickled PinkFriday FlairBe Different Act NormalFunky Junk Interiors, Weekend Wrap Up, Six Sisters Saturday