Do You See What I See?

The cherries are starting to ripen.

Both Ben Blair and I grew up with cherry trees in our yard. And we both have parallel memories of cherry pit spitting contests. Cherries feel like summer. What are your summer foods?

Rocking Chair Project

So this house we’re renting comes with a pretty fantastic yard. There are mature fruit trees — cherry, apple and peach. Two strawberry patches and a raspberry bramble. An herb garden. Lots of good cutting flowers. A large garden spot (large for suburbia anyway) which we’ve planted with tomatoes, peppers, summer squash, melons, pumpkins, salad greens and beans. Plus a good sized patio/deck with an awning.

We left our outdoor furniture behind in New York and have yet to replace it. In lieu of the traditional table and benches, I’d like to fill our patio with an assortment of rocking chairs instead. I’m thinking 7 mis-matched rockers in bright colors. I’ve set a budget limit of $50 per chair and now I’m hunting them down.

On Saturday I found a great turquoise rocker in metal for $75 that I hope to barter down this week. And a squatty, bright yellow one in front of a costume store. It wasn’t for sale, but if I show up with cash, maybe they’ll change their minds?

I’m willing to add a coat of paint to a non-descript rocker, or embellish with colorful cushions, but I do want to challenge myself to keep to the $50 per chair budget. If you’ve seen any rad rockers around, please let me know.

Also: if you live in the Denver metro area and know of a trustworthy upholsterer, I’d love a recommendation. Please. Pretty please?

image from kitby

Books by Color

Last night, we organized the book shelves in the living room by color — they’ve been so drab every time I walked by, I’m hoping this will be the fix. You like?

Other than that, it feels like a funny day. I wonder what’s up? We returned an air mattress at Target. Then bought a new lamp shade. And some light bulbs. I went grocery shopping. We made cinnamon rolls (the super easy Rhodes version).

Now all I want to do is watch movies until it’s time for bed.

Feel free to join me. Happy weekend!

How To Build A Giant Table

Okay friends. Here it is. My attempt at instructions or at least an explanation of how to build the giant table. With lots of photos. And more notes than you probably want. If you’re nervous to try it, remember that all I had to go from is some sketches I’d made on a legal pad and the picture of the table from Downtown Chic. So you’re already way ahead of me. FYI: the finished table measures 33″ high x 53″ wide x 107″ long. First, we spent an afternoon assembling materials. We used: 2 two x eight boards, 8 feet long each 2 two x eight boards, 46 inches long each 2 pieces of 1/2 inch plywood, 48 inches x 53 inches 1 piece of 1/2 inch plywood, 11 inches x 53 inches 6 two x four boards, 46 inches long each 4 two x two boards, 8 feet long each, cut to assorted lengths 4 four x four fence posts, 32 inches long each A full sheet (60″ x 114″) of metal from Denver Heating & Air Conditioning. Before we left, they used their industrial metal folding machines to make a 1/2 inch lip around each edge so that we didn’t cut ourselves while handling the metal. Costs: -The lumber was just under $80 at Home Depot. -The sheet metal was just over $50. -My nephew already had some long screws (about 4 inches) and a box of black nails. -We eventually decided we would want to attach the legs with bolts, so that we could easily remove the legs. Sixteen heavy-duty bolts and washers, etc, were about $50 at the hardware store. Once we had the materials assembled, we built the table top base. (And I should note, whenever I say “we” I mostly mean my nephew Josh.) We formed a rectangle using all four of the eight x two boards. The short pieces went inside the long pieces. We secured this box together at all 4 corners with 4 inch screws. Once the outer rectangle was formed, we laid the six 46″ two x fours across the bottom. We attached those with screws from the outside. Then we flipped it over. Next, it was time to attach the top surface of the table — the wood we would eventually attach the metal to. We couldn’t buy a single piece of plywood that was big enough, so we used 3 pieces. Two large pieces and one small one in the middle. We attached the 3 plywood pieces to the table top base by screwing into the two x four boards through the plywood. Once attached, they formed a rectangle that measured 53 inches x 107 inches. When the plywood sheets were securely attached, it was time to add a lip around the edge — something to wrap the sheet metal around. We used lengths of two x two board, held them in place with clamps, then screwed in through the plywood to attach them. And tada! Phase one was complete. During phase two we added the metal top. During phase three we added legs. Here’s phase two: We laid the piece of metal on the ground, top side facing down. Then placed the upside-down table top base on top of the metal. We marked and trimmed the corners of sheet metal. You can enlarge the images to see our technique. Then we hammered and hammered and hammered the metal until it would keep it’s shape wrapping around the table base. We used nails to secure the metal to the bottom of the table top lip. With the table top complete, we moved it into the room where it would eventually live. (It’s incredibly heavy. Seriously.) And then we attached the legs. The fence posts were nestled inside each corner and secured with clamps. Then we drilled four holes through the table base sides and completely through the fence posts. Two holes on each side. For each leg, four bolts went through four holes and were secured with nuts and washers. If/when we ever have to move the table through a doorway, it will be easy to remove the legs. And that’s it. We turned the table on its feet and it was ready to use. Except. A few days later, we realized some air pockets had formed between the metal and the plywood beneath. So we did a pretty major fix. Josh’s whole family came to help out. We took out every single nail and removed the metal top. We squirted three bottles of Gorilla Glue onto the backside of the metal, spread the glue evenly and placed the top back on the table. We weighted the metal top down with every heavy thing in the house we could find. A couple of cinder blocks. Books. Boxes of files and papers. (Luckily, Ben Blair is a PhD and has oodles of boxes of paper and books.) We let the glue dry overnight, then removed all the weight and re-nailed the metal under the lip. Obviously, if we were building again, we would have done the glue part before we hammered and nailed the metal the first time. Other Notes: 1) Our table is at a non-regular height. 30″ is standard table height. 36″ is standard counter height. Our table is 33″ and works best with a 20″ workstool. If you wanted a higher table, you could just use longer pieces of fence post. You could make the table shorter, but you might not be able to sit around it comfortably because the two x eight boards extend down quite far — making it hard to tuck knees under if you were sitting on a standard height chair. If you want a standard 30″ table, you would be wise to use two x six boards instead of two x eight boards. 2) Since we didn’t really know what we were doing, I intentionally picked a table style that would be rough and allow for building mistakes. Let this give you courage if you attempt a table as well. The more scratches, rough spots and gouges the better. And that’s it. Amazing! We still haven’t aged the table and are considering our options. I’ll definitely report back when I decide what to do. If you end up making a table too, please let me know. I’d love to hear how it turns out. Josh, the main builder on this project (and the handsome guy in the blue polo shirt here) started a two-year proselyting mission yesterday. I know it’s only been a day, but my whole family already misses him like crazy. Thank you, Josh!  

Table Project Update

More sneak peeks of the table project!

Isn’t it amazing? It’s enormous. And weighs 300 pounds or so. I love it so much! I know I owe more details and sources — a full post with more pics is coming.
Now. Do I leave it as is? Or try to age it to
look like this one?

How To Paint a Piano

If you’ve been thinking about painting your piano, then run, don’t walk, to your nearest paint shop and get yourself a quart of high-gloss enamel. You don’t have to paint it green, or any particularly bright color. But if you feel like your piano needs a fresh start, this is the cheapest, fastest way to go. I had been wanting to do this project for 9 years and kept getting intimidated by it. But there was no need for fear. It was actually very straightforward and is one of the most satisfying projects I’ve finished in ages. Here are my notes, in case you’re considering a paint job.   how to paint a piano

Choose a Piano That’s Not Worth Restoring

The best candidate for something like this is a piano that’s not worth restoring. Ours was perfect. It was the piano I grew up with and it was pretty beat up when my parents originally picked it up for a bargain $300. By the time I inherited it, it was even more war-torn and the first thing I did was get 3 bids on having it refinished and restored. All three refinishers told me it would be about $2000 to restore the inside and $2000 to restore the outside and that the inside was just old, and even if it was restored it wouldn’t be as good as new. All 3 recommended sending this one to the junk yard and buying new. But new was out of our budget. And so was a $4000 restoration. I got some other opinions, and it was decided that the piano was good enough for lessons for the kids (the kids were babies at the time), and that we could get a more serious piano when and if our kids became serious piano students. So we just kept the piano as it was and I dreamt of at least giving it a shiny coat of paint. I kept the dream alive for 9 years. Some years I thought a glossy black would be lovely. But then I felt like black would seem like I was trying to make the instrument more formal than it really was. Later I thought maybe a white coat that we could sand down and make sort of rustic would be nice. Then for about the last 3 years I decided turquoise would be the right thing to do, but I never made it happen. When we were moving, the piano was so depressing I almost left it behind. But Ben Blair said we should bring it to Colorado. Saturday morning I was craving a challenge so I decided to finally tackle the piano paint job. When I got to the paint store I had a vision: go big or go home. I decided on Grass Green then and there. I bought one quart of hi-gloss enamel, one quart of primer, tinted to match the paint, and a paint brush. Grand total: $40. By Saturday afternoon I had primed it and painted 2 coats of paint. At that point, I decided the green was a little too yellow, so I took the remaining paint back to the paint store and asked them to green it up a bit.  Saturday evening, I added one more coat and then came back to the project on Monday. Monday I did two more coats. Tuesday I did some touch ups. And tada! It’s finished. Unexpected thing: I can already see this will be the signature piece in our home. I had never thought about a signature piece for our home, but because I went with a bold color, now we have one. Every person that comes in the house is drawn to it. Everyone wants to touch the keys. It’s been played more in the last two days than it has been in years. Ben Blair wants to host a recital and call it Variations on the Green Piano. Other unexpected thing: a piano is big. Physically and visually. It’s not just a small accent piece. Once you have a green piano, you basically have to design the room around it instead of just work it into the existing space. Which means I need to talk to the landlord about painting the walls… Seeing our newly painted piano makes me super happy. Green wouldn’t be right for every home, but it’s perfect for ours. I feel like I just bought this piano 10 more years of life. Next up: time to get it tuned.

Updated To answer some of your questions:

1) The color is Benjamin Moore Yellow Green (but in my mind it looks more like grass green). 2) I didn’t use oil-based paint. 3) According to the paint store: yes, you should sand off any existing hi-gloss finish before you prime. 4) I don’t have any “before” pictures to share. I did have some. But they are gone. Because I am an idiot and mistakenly erased them. 5) Yes, I painted the bench as well. When I have the room more put together, I’ll share a photo tour. 6) I did not disassemble the piano, but an expert or less-lazy person would have. I painted with the keyboard closed. Once the paint was dry, I opened the keyboard and painted around it with a smaller brush. Happy painting! P.S. — More green piano photos. Plus, at what age should your child start piano lessons?

New Sofas

We left our tired, well-used sofas on the street as we packed up our house in New York. Which means we now have very little to sit on and are in couch shopping mode. Here are four I’m considering:

1) The
Florence Knoll Sofa in fabric by NJModern pictured at top.

2) The Bucktown Sofa by Chiasso.

3) The Bantam Sofa by DWR.

4) The Abby Sofa by Chiasso.

These are all between $1100 and $1800 — about what I expect to pay for a good quality sofa in not-extravagant fabric.
For a total bargain, there’s also this simple silhouette:

The Buse Sofa from JC Penney. More of an over-stuffed feel than I’m looking for, but you can’t beat the price: on sale for $499.


We’re Officially Locals Now

Morning all! It’s a brand new week. Our house is now wired up. I’ve got a new Guest Mom to introduce to you today. And I’ll be announcing winners of last Friday’s Giveaways in a bit. Life is good!

While I’m writing today’s posts, here are some pics of our maiden voyage to the library. Library cards were acquired by all.

Most fun thing about our new library: see that phone Oscar has to his ear? When you pick it up, someone on the other end is there to read you a story.

Which reminds me, we have decided to try something new: no cable/DVR. I am a bit of a DVR addict and want to declare from the beginning that I may not last a month without its joys. We’re not giving up TV altogether — we just want to experiment with the downloadable options out there. Maybe Apple TV. Maybe Roku/Netflix. We’ll see.

While we figure things out, the library has suddenly regained it’s prior glory in my life. I’ve got all sorts of reading time on my hands now that I can’t depend on American Idol to keep me entertained. So I’m need of book recommendations. If you’ve read anything wonderful lately, please leave a comment. I’d love a nice long list to plow through.

Central Park Photo Shoot Details

The feedback on the family photos in Central Park has been wonderful. Thank you! I promised a followup post with more details and I’m ready to deliver.

How it Came About
Candice Stringham (the Brooklyn-based photographer) contacted me a few weeks ago. She teaches online photography classes and wanted to build her family photo portfolio for an upcoming class. So she offered to take photos of my family in Central Park. I took a peek at the work on her blog, thought it was fantastic and said: yes, please.

Candice liked the idea of doing either a pastel English tea inspired color scheme, or a more colorful Kate Spade/Crewcuts inspired color scheme. She pulled Brenda Barrett Taylor on to be the prop stylist and they decided to go with Kate Spade/Crewcuts. My assignment was to come up with outfits in this color palette: navy blue, crisp white, grass green, cherry red and mustard yellow. I didn’t keep to the palette in every case (my skirt is royal blue, for example), but I did my best to keep to their vision.

While I took care of the clothes, Brenda and Candice provided all the props. The picnic. The teacups. The books. And the cupcakes from Magnolia Bakery. Brenda is an incredible stylist. It was a treat to get to see her in action.

What We Are Wearing
I worked hard on the outfits. Dug through closets. Borrowed, begged, bought. Recruited friends to help shop. Overbought just in case. Kept tags on anything new until I knew exactly what we were going to use. I used my bedroom floor to gather outfits as they came together and get a sense of what colors we still needed more of. The night before the shoot I had the kids try on different options until we narrowed it down.

We brought additional clothing to the shoot in case the photographer wanted to mix things up — a mustard jacket for me by J.Crew, a green check button down for Ben, etc. But we ended up shooting in exactly what we were wearing. Amazingly, we didn’t need to buy that much. And everything we did buy is very useable.

Betty wore an adorable dress from Ses Petities Mains. It wasn’t new (she’s owned it since December), but it still looks great. Her red cable sweater is by Ralph Lauren, a hand-me-down from a friend. Her yellow sandals are by Salt Water Sandals, from Zappos.

Oscar wore plaid shorts and a blue oxford button down from Old Navy. His tie was picked up at Gymboree (score: $6!). I actually had a different tie picked out for him with wide, diagonal mustard and navy stripes. But he wouldn’t wear it. The one he did wear worked out just fine. His shoes were picked up last summer, classic boat shoes by Perry Topsider.

Olive wore a white eyelet skirt by Ralph Lauren, borrowed from my friend Kathryn Carmona. Her mustard shoes are also borrowed from Kathryn. They are European and beautiful. I can’t remember the maker — Kathryn, if you’re reading, please share. They were actually a size too small for Olive, but she manned up and wore them anyway for the photo shoot — without complaint I might add. Olive’s red stripe shirt is several years old from Old Navy. Her red flower was a lucky last-minute addition. I picked it up at H&M; last summer.

Maude wore a gorgeous mustard jacket from Ismodern. On sale. Grab one while you can. The dark denim skirt she made herself at sewing class last summer. Her red stripey socks were borrowed from Ralph — all stripey socks in the photo are from H&M;, and were found in Ralph and Oscar’s stockings this past Christmas. The flower headband was made by Olive last Christmas as a gift. Edit: Forgot Maude’s shoes — purchased at Target last month in the boy’s shoe department.

Ralph wore a green Lacoste polo shirt. Found at Lord & Taylor. Pricier than I would normally go for a polo shirt, but it was 25% off and was the exact perfect green. His navy blazer is by Gymboree (another score: $18!). His jeans he already had from H&M.; His sneakers were new — but weren’t bought for the photo shoot, he just needed new sneaks. By Adidas, from Zappos.

I wore a blue lamp-shade pleated skirt from Banana Republic. I already owned this. The white shirt is from H&M;, also already owned by me. The green cardigan was bought for the shoot and was found at Old Navy. Edit: Forgot my shoes — I bought the adorable gingham peep toes at TJ Maxx last summer, I believe the brand is called Unlisted.

Ben wore BR jeans he already owned. Lacoste sneakers he already owned. A tie he already owned. We picked up the blue check button down at Old Navy.

What The Shoot Was Like
The shoot was 90% awesome and 10% Oscar throwing tantrums. But really, the kids were great. Candice was patient. The weather couldn’t have been better. The whole shoot took about 2 hours but felt like a few really wonderful minutes.

I said it before, but I have to say it again: I couldn’t be more pleased with how the photos turned out. A perfect souvenir of New York for my family. Thank you Candice and Brenda!

Central Park

The family pictures in Central Park turned out beautifully. Candice Stringham, the photographer, was incredible. Lots of patience. Great style. Flexible. A delight to work with. If you’re in New York — or anywhere near New York — book her right away. For reals.

I know preparing for a family portrait can be stressful. What will everyone wear? Will the kids behave? Will I look hot? : ) Leading up to our photo shoot, there were several times I was tempted to cancel — we’re just so busy right now. But I am beyond happy that I have these photos now. What a treasure for our family! Worth every bit of time and effort.

And I can’t even put into words how wonderful it was to spend an afternoon-with-perfect-weather in our beloved park before the big move. I’m going to get all weepy just thinking about it.

P.S. — Thanks for all the great feedback! Per your requests, here is a post about how the shoot and the wardrobe came together here.

Calling Cards

Yesterday, the older 3 kids went to school with a stack of keep-in-touch calling cards to hand out. The cards list twitter handles, blog urls, email, skype names — everything but a phone number. My favorite were the titles they picked out: Kids Film Expert, Ballerina, and Girl Extraordinaire.

5 Easy ways to teach a girl (or boy) to sew — By Guest Mom Amy Smart

image credit, Amy Hackworth

I think sewing is another great method for kids to express themselves creatively. I love this thought of teaching our children to sew as a means of being a “stabilizer” in their lives expressed beautifully by former first lady, Grace Coolidge:

“Every girl should be taught to sew, not merely for the sake of making something, but as an accomplishment which may prove a stabilizer in time of perplexity or distress. Many a time when I needed to hold myself firmly I have taken up a needle (a sewing needle, some knitting needles, or a crochet hook.) Whatever its form or purpose, it often proved to be as the needle of the compass, keeping me to the course.”

So here are some ways to get them (or you!) started:

One fun way, especially with really young kids, is beginning-level lacing cards. The ever-popular eeBoo has some adorable choices.

If your kids are a little older and you want to make your own sewing cards, check out Marie’s patterns at Make and Takes.

In The Creative Family, Amanda Soule suggests simply giving your children some fabric in a sewing hoop, a needle and thread, and letting them go.

We’ve also had success with my daughter drawing a picture and taping it to the window. Then she lightly traces it onto plain fabric, and stitches over the traced lines. A very simple way to let them capture their art in another form.

For another very simple project to do with your kids, Oliver + S offers this free download for an easy child’s skirt. I am no expert at sewing clothes (still a little scared of zippers and sleeves) but this one is totally do-able. And cute.

Really, you can do this. And it doesn’t need to be perfect. Keep it simple, but at the same time, let them run with it. Don’t be afraid to let them (or yourself) make mistakes. Your kids will love anything they have a hand in, and it will give them a ton of satisfaction to see a finished product that they accomplished with their own hands. Hopefully it will do the same for you too!

Recycled Boxes

The towers of boxes in my living room are by turn exhilarating (new adventure!) and overwhelming (so much work to do!). Diane at Mayflower told me to call her whenever I’m getting stressed out about the move — she promised to talk me down from the ledge — and now I’ve got her on speed dial. : ) Mayflower will be bringing boxes when they arrive to do the packing on the 28th. But it turns out I want to do as much of the packing myself as I am able to. I didn’t know I would feel this way. I assumed I would want them to do all the packing. Every last Lego and barrette. But I’ve found that doing the boxing up myself is the ideal way to carefully go through drawers and closets and purge our belongings. And I have to say here, that purging feels good. Really good. If you come by my house and tell me you want something, I’m very likely to hand it to you. (Piano? Take it. Oscar? He’s yours.) It feels that good. At one point, I did go to Staples and pick up some bankers boxes to put our paperwork and files in. But I’m trying to gather used/recycled boxes for the rest of our belongings. Freecycle has been my best source — by providing either actual boxes or advice on where I can pick up used ones for free. In fact this morning, based on some freecycle advice, Ben Blair and I gathered a ton of boxes at Sound Shore Hospital (and apparently they have dozens on any given morning — who knew?). Diane also recommended checking out places like U-Haul or self-storage shops if we end up needing to buy any specialized boxes because they usually have the best prices. What about you? What are your best box sources?  

Ask Design Mom Week: Caring for Curly Hair

Hi Gabrielle. I’m really enjoying your Ask Design Mom week, and I have a question for you. What products do you use for your hair? Your curls always look beautiful, and I love that you wear it curly and don’t get it blown straight all the time. I also have curly hair and am always looking for product suggestions. Thanks, and good luck with the move. — Emily

Hi Emily! Thanks for the hair compliments. I feel like I’m having a hair crisis right now, so I appreciate the positive feedback. My haircare has been heavily influenced by the book Curly Girl. I don’t follow their instructions exactly, but I have adopted many of their guidelines. Two that I use daily are:

1) Pile on the conditioner. I use a light shampoo very infrequently, and then a heavy conditioner very frequently. Any thick conditioner will work. I leave it on in the shower for a few minutes. Then rinse it out. After I’ve towel-dried my hair I put in more conditioner, mixed with gel, and leave it in. On a particularly frizzy day, I might scrunch my dry hair with even more conditioner throughout the day.

2) Get rid of your brush. When I’m wearing my hair curly, I never brush it. I keep a wide tooth comb in the shower to work the conditioner through, but I don’t brush.

What about you Fellow Curly Girls? Do you have any favorite haircare products or haircare tips?

Images of curly haired peeps from Bumble & Bumble. Win a $300 shopping spree from Peek? Find out how here.

Homemade Cherry Pie

I just finished my 3rd piece of pie. I had one after dinner last night. One as a late night snack. And another for lunch today. The pie is so good. Cherry. Not weirdly-artificial-from-a-can-cherry, but real, sour cherry. With a buttery crust. Cherry pie is my favorite. Yesterday after school, my friend Sherry came by with her kids. And she brought us this whole gorgeous pie. I couldn’t have been happier. I love afternoons spent with Sherry. We send the kids to the trampoline and then we talk about everything and anything that comes to mind. Kids and marriage and school and moving and photography. I would ask Sherry for the recipe, but I know she’s one of those bakers that adds a little of this and a little that and doesn’t really keep track. So I took some photos of the gorgeous pie instead. So that I will remember her kindness when I’m far away.  

Ask Design Mom Week: Thank you/Welcome Gift

Gabrielle, I have been reading, enjoying and learning from your blog for a little over a year now and was hoping you could help me. I was elected as the new President for my sons preschool and will be taking this adventure with seven other wonderful, amazing women whom I want to greet, encourage and thank for joining together to make our school a better place.

I need gift ideas that are super cool and useful but on the less expensive side as I do not want to spend a ton. If you have any ideas or links you could send my way I would really appreciate it. I am a graphic designer so do it yourself projects would work too. Thank you for any help or direction you may give. — Jennifer


I love your question, Jennifer. There are always great suggestions in the comments whenever the topic is gifts — so many thoughtful ideas. Since you’ll be working with these women, my first thought was pretty office supplies. Specifically, I was thinking of the decoupaged clipboards I made for my daughter’s birthday party favors. I made mini ones, but you could make full size ones for the grownups. A great DIY project and very inexpensive. Plus they’re practical and useful. You can find instructions at Martha Stewart.

What about you, Clever Readers? What would you give as practical, super-cool, inexpensive gift?

You could win a $300 shopping spree from Peek Aren’t You Curious? Yay!! Find out how here.

Green photo scavenger hunt

Katie Schultz had a great idea. She took her kids on a photo scavenger hunt. They walked around their neighborhood and took pictures of anything green they could find. So smart!

The same concept would work with any color. You could do it with letters as well. Or pick another sort of theme — smiles, toys, cars, things that make noise, animals, etc. Toddlers and preschoolers would be all over this.

Young Einstein Party Food & Decorations

Maude’s Young Einstein party was on Saturday. It was a hit! Maybe the favorite birthday party we’ve ever hosted. Decorations were simple — green balloons hung upside down and circles featuring portraits of Einstein that coordinated with the invitations we’d designed. (They matched the party favors as well.) The first part of the party was filled with experiments showcased by Kiasa from Science Explorers of NY (they were wonderful — you can see my post about them by scrolling down or clicking here). And afterwards, it was time for lunch: pizza (delivered mid-party by our favorite local pizza shop) plus strawberries and bananas. But to keep it science-y, we started the meal with a blind-folded taste test between two different chocolate milks. By the time the taste tests were done, Kiasa and her talented assistant Emily had already cleaned up all their equipment and were packed and ready to go. So efficient! When lunch was finished, it was time for cupcakes and candles. Brain-y cupcakes of course. (I know. I know. The cupcakes are a little too gross/creepy/cheesy, but you can not believe how awesome they were with the 4th grade crowd.) Edit: for everyone that’s loving the brain cupcakes, take a look at this full on brain cake I found at Cookie. Hooray for Maude turning 10 years old! Hooray for successful parties! Lots more Young Einstein party photos here.
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