Finding Dory Party

Finding Dory Party Spread:

We went to see Finding Dory for my son’s 4th Birthday, and decided to use it as a theme for his birthday dinner with our family. Since all the fuss was about him and his birthday, I tried to include him as much as possible in the preparations. He absolutely loved being included! I had to remind myself along the way that the main goal wasn’t to have perfect decorations, but to make sure he had fun, and that he felt special. He loved having a sense of authority, and he did an awesome job helping me out! I found many wonderful ideas on Pinterest. Checkout my Pinterest board here, and follow me on Pinterest for other fun ideas. We used these pins as inspiration for our Finding Dory Party.  Here is how it all turned out!

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Since I have an 11 month old that likes to eat everything in sight, I decided to place my coral reef streamer up and out of her reach. Also I used yellow because that was the color we had on hand, but I was really happy with how it turned out. I traced a fish cookie cutter on blue card stock to get these cute fish shapes.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Free Coloring Pages:

My son was super interested while I was searching Pinterest and making plans for the party, and when he saw these coloring pages, he really wanted to paint them! So I printed them out, set him up with paint, and got back to the Pinterest search. We loved how they turned out so we hung them up as part of the party decor. He was so proud to display them for everyone.

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for these free coloring pages here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas
He used scotch tape and hung them on the wall all by himself!

Welcome Sign:

Snag the free printable download of  my Finding Dory welcome sign below.

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Sign
Finding Dory Party Sign Free Printable Download

Free Printable Download of Dory Party Sign

Food Ideas:

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

I had planned to use the above idea to make fish shaped watermelon pieces for the party. I showed the picture to my son to let him know what we were going to be doing, and he got stuck on the star shape idea. We went with it and made both fish and starfish. He loved making these with me, and he did a really great job! It ended up being really nice to have a smaller star shape to use up the smaller scraps of watermelon. I was surprised at how much scrap we still had even after using the small stars.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Finding Dory Party Ideas
We gathered all the scraps in a separate bowl to be enjoyed after the party. One large watermelon made one large tray of cute sea creatures and one large bowl of scraps.
Finding Dory Party Ideas
As we were using the cookie cutters to make the shapes in the watermelon, he said, “Everybody is going to love it!” He was so proud of the great job he was doing. Here he is enjoying his Fishy watermelon at the party!

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas
This kid is such a character, he can’t take a picture without making a silly face.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas Finding Dory Party Ideas

 Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

We made purple Seaweed because my son picked purple grapes, and it was his Birthday after all. Again, the most important thing was that he was having fun, not that the fruit was the perfect color. He loved having he authority to choose the color of grapes. People ought to feel like kings and queens on their birthdays, and I think he did!

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas Click here to get the printable of these fins and tails from asthebunnyhops.com.

Execution:

I really loved this idea, but I decided to create dory’s eyes myself instead of using googly eyes. I printed them out on a word document and used a larger 1 1/2 hole punch to save time cutting. The fins and tails were quite time consuming to cut out. They were also very skinny making them hard to attach to the cup with the glue dots. In the end they were a big hit at the party so I was glad we did it. I also decided to just draw the mouths on with a permanent marker. This was mostly because I couldn’t find any black paper, but we made several different expressions, and they turned out pretty cute!

Finding Dory Party Ideas

 

Party cup Dory eyes Free Printable DownloadParyt cup Dory eyes Free Printable Download

Here is a link to the Free Printable Download of these Dory Eyes

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

I ended up forgetting about this one until after the hot dogs were cooked so I cut some up afterwards real quick. The tentacles didn’t curl up as well since I didn’t cut them before they cooked, but they were still pretty cute.

Finding Dory Party Ideas Finding Dory Party Ideas

Original Ideas:

Blank Food Labels:

At first I was going to design these with words already on them. I never got around to doing it, and in the end I was actually glad that they were blank. Once I had the food in front of me, it was nice to have blank ones so I could write in what I needed to.

Finding Dory Party Ideas Finding Dory Party Ideas

Free Downloads for Finding Dory Food Labels

Custom Drawn Napkin Holders:

We got my son some Finding Dory Stickers from the Dollar Store for his birthday, and I thought this would be a fun way to use them. He colored paper orange to be wrapped and taped around the napkins and utensils. Then he thoughtfully placed one sticker on each one. This project kept him busy for a while, and he was very proud to share these with his guests.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Bubbles… Bubbles… My Bubbles! (From Finding Nemo)

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Fish & Chips:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Fish Out of Water Popcorn Balls:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Finding Dory Party Ideas
My son helped me make these popcorn balls. He had so much fun, and was so proud!

I think he had a pretty great birthday over all. I am glad he was so willing to help out! I still cant believe my little guy is four! Happy Birthday Big Guy!

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2016-08-25 22.11.57

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

2016-07-05 17.51.25

You have 2 overripe bananas left over just sitting there on your counter. They are too ripe to eat, and you don’t have enough to make banana bread. You don’t want to toss them in the trash. What do you do? You make Gluten Free Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes! These are even great as a last minute dinner.

At first I was skeptical of these no flour pancakes, but when I tried them, I was pleasantly surprised. These three ingredient pancakes are delicious even without any flour or sugar. You can’t even tell they are gluten free! You have to eat it to believe it. Give it a try.

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Serve with some Turkey bacon and fried eggs!

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: About 14 mini 2 inch pancakes.

Serving Size: 4-6 mini 2 inch pancakes

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 2 over ripe bananas mashed
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Heat Skillet between 300-350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
  3. Grease skillet with coconut oil or butter.
  4. Use a mini cookie scoop to drop batter on the skillet.
  5. Flip when golden brown on one side.
  6. Cook both sides till golden brown.
  7. Serve with fresh bananas on top or with homemade maple syrup.
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Visiting Teaching Handout July 2016

  • Scroll down for the July visiting teaching handouts.
  • If you are looking for a handout for the September visiting teaching message you can check it out here.

image

Here is a link to the Visiting Teaching Message for July 2016: Our Potential for Parenthood. I had way too much fun with it, so I came up with a couple of different handouts. I think it is important to Pray and Ponder over your sisters, and what they might need to hear from you this month. It might be good to focus on different parts of the lesson for each sister you visit.

I first read this message about a week ago, and I have been pondering and praying over it ever since. This particular message has pulled at my heartstrings. It quotes Elder Neil L. Anderson’s talk Children from the October 2011 General Conference. A few months after my Husband and I celebrated our 1st Anniversary, I remember listening to this talk live. It played a big role in our decision to have our first child. I love this talk. I highly recommend you read it. There are a lot of great stories and quotes in it.  In his talk he said:

Many voices in the world today marginalize the importance of having children or suggest delaying or limiting children in a family. My daughters recently referred me to a blog written by a Christian mother (not of our faith) with five children. She commented: “[Growing] up in this culture, it is very hard to get a biblical perspective on motherhood. … Children rank way below college. Below world travel for sure. Below the ability to go out at night at your leisure. Below honing your body at the gym. Below any job you may have or hope to get.” She then adds: “Motherhood is not a hobby, it is a calling. You do not collect children because you find them cuter than stamps. It is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in. It is what God gave you time for.”7

Isnt that a great quote? I just love it! Hence, this handout was born. Plus, aren’t Lemons just perfectly Summery?

Visiting Teaching Handout.

The above quote that Elder Neil L. Anderson referred to in this talk is found in an article titled Motherhood is a Calling by Rachel Jankovic from the Blog DesiringGod.org. This is also a fantastic read.

Click Here for your Free Printable Download of this ‘Squeeze” Handout.

Ideas to Supplement this Handout:

oil vile
1. Add a doTERRA Lemon Essential Oil Sample to this Handout.
  • Not sure what Lemon Essential Oil is good for? Click here to find out.
  • Want to obtain some for your sisters? Go here to purchase from my friend and neighbor.
Visiting Teaching Handout Ideas
This is how my final product turned out.
This is a great paper cutter for making crafts.
I bought this EK Tools 1/2 inch Circle Punch to get the perfect sized hole for the sample lemon oil, and to make sure my Handouts were cut perfectly straight I used my new Paper Trimmer. It is always exciting to get a package in the mail, and I was so happy I had the right tools to make this project look so nice!
Visiting Teaching Hand out Ideas-lemon squeezer
2. Another Idea is to add a Lemon Squeezer like this one.
Yummy lemonade for my visiting teaching lesson.
3. Or you could add some Lemonade. Yum!

 

Being Sensitive:

Not all sisters have “Picture Perfect” families as mentioned in  Elder Neil L. Andersen’s talk Whoso Receiveth Them, Receiveth Me April 2016 General Conference.

God loves children. He loves all children. The Savior said, “Suffer [the] little children … to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”1

Children today find themselves in many different and complex family configurations.

For example, today, twice as many children in the United States are living with only one parent than were 50 years ago.2 And there are many families that are less unified in their love of God and willingness to keep His commandments.

In this increasing spiritual commotion, the restored gospel will continue to carry the standard, the ideal, the pattern of the Lord.

In the Visiting Teaching Message it says:

Though not all of us become parents in this life, we can nurture children of every age. We enjoy the blessings of being part of Heavenly Father’s family, and we experience the joys and challenges of being part of an earthly family. And for many, parenthood awaits them in the eternities ahead.

Some sisters haven’t been blessed with children yet. Some have lost children. Some have children far away at college, or on missions, and some may be estranged from their children. I believe that knowing and loving your sisters can help you magnify your calling as a visiting teacher. One of the best ways I have found to do this is to pray for them. You can ask Heavenly Father to help you see them like He does. Perhaps you will be prompted to refocus your lesson on the fact that we are Heavenly Father’s Children and He loves us very much.

I taught Sunbeams last Sunday and the lesson was I belong to a family.  It says:

Heavenly Father and Jesus love every family

Show picture 1-7, A Loving Family. Explain that some families have a mother and a father, and some families have only one parent. Some families have a grandparent or other person helping to take care of the children. Some families have many children, while other families have one child or no children. Help the children understand that every family is different and Heavenly Father and Jesus love every family.

I love that even the lesson for the 3-4 year old sunbeams emphasizes the love that Heavenly Father and Jesus have for every family no matter their circumstance. Isn’t it cool that the lessons in all 3 meetings seem to have related themes? Last week in Sacrament meeting one of the talks was based on Elder Neil L. Andersen’s talk from the April 2016 General Conference that I mentioned earlier in this post. I thought they correlated perfectly. I think there is some divine guidance there. In the July Visiting Teaching Message it says:

“It was essential that God’s spirit children have mortal birth and an opportunity to progress toward eternal life,” taught Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “In light of the ultimate purpose of the great plan of happiness, I believe that the ultimate treasures on earth and in heaven are our children and our posterity.”1

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For your Free Printable Treasures Quote Handout click here.

We are Heavenly Father’s Children. We are His treasures!

Make some Hidden Treasure Cookies for your sisters and give them this recipe card.2016-06-26 08.42.18

For your Free Printable Download of the Hidden Treasure Cookies Recipe Card click Here.

Chocolate Caramel Hidden Teasure Cookies. Yum!
Don’t these Hidden Treasure Cookies make your mouth water?
Visiting Teaching treat!
Don’t have time to make cookies? Attach your Treasure quote to some chocolate gold coins.

I hope you find some ideas here that you can use. You can customize your handouts to meet your sisters needs. I have a testimony that Heavenly Father answers prayers. I know He can help you to see them like He does, like Children of God. We are children of the King of Kings. Now that really is a treasure.

Hidden Treasure Cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 24+ 2 inch cookies

Hidden Treasure Cookies

Delicious Chocolate Cookies with a Surprise Caramel Center.

Ingredients

  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • Rolos

Instructions

  1. Combine cake mix, oil and eggs.
  2. Form cookie dough into 1 1/2 inch balls.
  3. Hide unwrapped Rolos inside of each dough ball.
  4. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
  5. Bake for 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees F.
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To check out the handouts for the August Visiting Teaching Message click hereVisiting teaching handouts August 2016

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Top 11 Quick and Healthy Summer Snacks

 

Such Great Ideas for Healthy Eating!You are as busy as a bee and hunger strikes again! We have all been there. The question is, do you run to the pantry, or your drawer at work, and grab whatever processed garbage you can find, or do you try to find something healthy? Perhaps if you had a list of delicious healthy ideas you would stop going for that Twinkie or Ding Dong. Wouldn’t that be convenient? Oh wait! There is a list of healthy snacks right here at your finger tips! Now you can eat healthy snacks and get back to work instead of sinking into a food coma.

 

Quick Throw Together Snacks:

  1. Yogurt and Granola. It doesn’t get much simpler than that. Pop the top off a yogurt and sprinkle on some granola. My favorite yogurt with granola is strawberry. If you have a little time, you can cut up a banana, and a few strawberries too, to make the yogurt even more filling and delicious. This also makes a yummy breakfast.
  2. Crackers with Cottage Cheese. Spoon a teaspoon of cottage cheese over whole wheat crackers and sprinkle with Mrs. Dash .This spice mix packs a great punch of flavor, and doesn’t contain salt! Definitely a winner in my book. In case you have never heard of Mrs. Dash, you can find it here. I like the Original flavor. Growing up we used to eat this on Ritz Crackers, but now I use Triscuits as a healthier option.Top 11 Quick and Healthy Summer Snacks. Yum!
  3. Green Smoothie. The key to a good fruit smoothie is the right ingredients. Start with frozen tropical fruits including Strawberries, mangoes, peaches, pineapple, grapes etc. It is usually cheaper when you buy it in bulk.  Add a leaf or two of washed kale. Some people are deterred by the green color of the smoothie, but kale has such a rich green color, I think it is just beautiful.  Add a dollop of low fat plain or strawberry yogurt to make it nice and smooth. Pour in at least a cup (8 oz) of V8 juice. Just make sure you use the right type of V8. The V8 Splash flavors contain high fructose corn syrup so steer clear of them. I always use the V8 fusion flavors. I like the strawberry banana,  mango peach, and strawberry pineapple flavors best. My favorite thing about V8 is that each 8 oz serving contains 1 whole serving of fruits and vegetables! You can almost get your five daily fruits and veggies all in one cup! Can you tell I like V8? Blend it all until its nice and smooth. It’s like drinking pure energy!
  4. Bagel with Tomato. Toast half of a whole wheat bagel and spread 1TBS low fat whipped cream cheese over the top. Top with a slice of lean lunch meat and sliced tomatoes.  Eat open faced. This snack is filling yet doesn’t weigh you down. Delicious!
  5. Warm Peanut Butter Drizzled over Apple Slices. Since it’s a warm snack, it’s nice to eat this one at night when the munchies set in. Just plop some peanut butter in a mug and microwave for about 30 seconds. Drizzle it over sliced apples and eat with a fork. Sprinkle some mini dark chocolate chips or granola over it if you are feeling dangerous.Top 11 Quick and Healthy Summer Snacks. Yum!
  6. Cottage Cheese and Pineapple. I like to use low fat cottage cheese and Dole  pineapple in pineapple juice. This snack reminds me of my childhood summers. My mom and I used to eat this together. Just mix the pineapple and cottage cheese together and enjoy. Be sure to add the pineapple juice too! It is super refreshing and gives you a burst of energy. I hear that people like to have cottage cheese with peaches or mixed berries too, but I have never tried That. Maybe that will be my next adventure.
  7. Chocolate Banana Shake. I love Breakfast Essentials! They are quick, filling and delicious. They taste even better as a shake. Just toss 1/2 a banana, one cup of ice, one cup low-fat milk, and a packet of rich milk chocolate breakfast essentials into a blender, and it creams up real smooth like a milkshake. Sometimes I even drink it as a recovery shake after a taxing workout. Can’t go wrong with this one. If you don’t have banana’s on hand, no biggie, throw in some strawberries, or mixed berries instead. My Bella Rocket Blender works great for this shake. Since it is a single serve blender, it is less mess to deal with when I am done.
  8. Homemade Trail Mix. In a small bowl combine ¼ cup each of raw almonds, craisens, and unsalted cashews. I like to toss this mix in a small kids cup with lid, you know the ones you get from restaurants? Yeah, we are “those people” the ones that take the kids cups home. We wash and reuse them. Don’t judge, they are super convenient.  It fits conveniently in the cup holder in the car, or even in your stroller. If you aren’t taking this on the go, try adding a few dark chocolate chips for a little extra flavor.Top 11 Quick and Healthy Summer Snacks. Yum!Prep Ahead of Time Snacks:
  9. Hummus and Veggies. The hummus I purchase the most is probably Sabra brand. You can find it at some stores for around $4. I like the roasted pine nut flavor. You can eat this with all kinds of veggies. My favorites are baby carrots, sugar snap peas, red or yellow bell peppers (the green ones aren’t as good), celery, jicama, cherry tomatoes, broccoli etc. Here is where the prep comes in. Slice up a couple days worth of veggies and place them nicely on a plate so they look appetizing. Having it all prepped will help you to actually eat it. Remember, you are a busy person, and you don’t want the thought of meal prep to deter you from eating healthy when hunger comes creeping in. Believe me, it will be worth it!
  10. Guacamole and Veggies. At first I thought this would be weird, because Guacamole was intended to be consumed on crunchy corn chips or a greasy taco right? But I went to a church activity where they served only veggies instead of chips, so I thought I would give it a try. Boy was I pleasantly surprised by the amazing flavor of the guacamole on the crisp veggies. Plus if you are already planning to chop up veggies for hummus, just make a little extra for the guacamole and you are good to go. I always make my own guacamole. Just mash an avocado with a fork and add some lime juice to help keep it fresh. Leaving a pit in the guacamole helps with this too. You can add some sea salt and pepper or even some diced tomatoes or onions if you are into that.
  11. Hard Boiled Eggs. My son loves these, and I can let him snack on these guilt free! Just place some raw eggs in a pot and cover them with cold water until the water line is one inch above the eggs. Boil the water. Once you have reached a rolling boil turn off the burner and let the pot sit for 15 minutes. Remove the eggs carefully with tongs and allow them to cool before refrigerating. I also like to eat this as egg salad on wheat toast. To make the egg salad, dice the egg and mix in a little plain yogurt, mustard and lemon pepper.

Top 11 Quick and Healthy Summer Snacks. Yum!

You may have noticed that a lot of the ingredients repeat themselves. This cuts back on waste. I like to try and keep these items on hand so I can pull them out at a moment’s notice.  I hope this gives you some inspiration to eat healthy and feel good! You can do it! What are your favorite healthy snacks? I would love to hear from you.

For your convenience, I have added a link to purchase some of these snacks on Amazon Prime.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

This post contains Affiliate links. To read more about what that means, click here to see our Affiliate Area.

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Top 11 Quick and Healthy Summer Snacks. Yum!