Thursday, February 9, 2012


We get deer in herds, almost everyday. Very neat to see them up so close.

I have also seen a cougar, bald eagles and a raccoon. Pete has seen a fox, and we see badger prints. Yet to be seen is a bear, moose (we have seen one far away on the mtn.) and I would like to see the badger, maybe a wolverine would be cool.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Hunger Games Birthday Party

Okay, so the girl is absolutely obsessed with the trilogy The Hunger Games right now. She read them last year, but decided to read them again when she saw the movie preview. So in trying to come up with a party idea for her 11th birthday we landed on The Hunger Games. So first the invitation which I included a little typed summary of the book, good thing since only one other girl had read them. (oh well)

Front door welcoming them to district 12.

I decorated the inside with balloons and then hung silver parachutes from the ceiling with bread and chocolate tied to them. The chocolate is not really from the book, but they were prizes that the girls could claim later. I had a poster board with all of their names written down, so each phase of the party was a competition of sorts with one final victor.

This was the first time I have made a pinata, and I think it turned out quite well. Cadence helped make it and we made it after the tracker jacker nest that Katniss drops on a tribute, killing her when it splits open and the trackers attack. I made a few fake looking bees to really show that it is supposed to be a wasps nest of sorts. The candy inside was wrapped in yellow to look like the tracker jackers upon explosion.

Of course we had to have hot chocolate, not just because it was cold outside, but because Katniss loves the hot beverage in the book. (and by the way those are gingerbread marshmallows, not dog treats!)

The centerpiece was a cornucopia filled with burnt bread. I had to borrow the cornucopia, so I could not paint it gold. And of course the burnt bread represents the bread Peeta burns when they are 11 to help her when she is starving. If it had been spring or summer, I would have covered my buffet with dandelions as well.

Cadence helped me make a Boston cream cake from scratch, it was really not too pretty, but it tasted awesome.

Also on the buffet were poisonous berries (chocolate covered blueberries) crackers, dried meat, and not pictured we had strawberries, puffed corn, district 12 drop biscuits, half moon rolls with black seeds, liver filled puff pastry (really pepperoni and cheese croissants) and Mr. Mellarks cookies.

Also I had to make the goat cheese and apple tarts that they talked about, they were so good (even if only one child ate them). I would make these again in an instant.

First the girls had capitol makeovers. Aunt Emily came to help with the hair dos, I had cheap colored hair clip ins and loads of funky colored makeup and glitter powder.

Then they had a scavenger hunt for survival gear, we had about a foot of snow outside so we opted for the hunt to be in the basement. The girls started with camo bags and had to find whistles, compasses and other survival things.

Then they tried their had at painting wooden animals, not quite the camouflage from the book, but still fun, and it took a really long time. The girls voted on the best. Also they took a quiz on which plants are edible and which are poisonous, and played some other athletic games to simulate the training. I had a knot tying craft, but we ran out of time.

Pinatas, always a little crazy, took about 10 girls before that nest split.

Then we blew out the candles, and had some cake and opened presents. We are super grateful to those friends from Salt Lake that traveled all the way up to Heber to celebrate with us!