DIY Pom Pom Cupcake Garland

Every celebration needs cute party decor, and this DIY pom pom cupcake garland is absolutely adorable. It's perfect for a birthday party or baby shower, and it would be wonderful as a photo booth backdrop too. It's easy, inexpensive, and fun to make... and I'm sharing the full step-by-step instructions below.




The first step is to make a bunch of pom poms. The number of pom poms you need depends on how long you need your garland to be. I suggest a minimum of 5.




To make simple pom poms. Wrap yarn around your fingers or a piece of cardboard approximately 60-80 times (not too tightly), slip the yarn off your fingers and tie it in the middle, cut the loops, and trim to shape. It's that easy! 

(You can also find a helpful video here.)




Then: use hot glue to attach cupcake liners to the bottoms of the pom poms, use hot glue to add "cherry" pom poms to the tops, and trim as desired.

To turn the cupcakes into a garland, simply string embroidery floss through the "cherry" pom poms.



Isn't this garland sweet?




DIY party decor is wonderful, inexpensive, and totally unique, and this pom pom garland is perfect for any party. If you give this craft a try, let me know what you think.



Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)

Simple Easter "Bunny Bar"... with free printable sign

Putting together a self-serve "Bunny Bar" is an excellent Easter entertaining idea. It's simple, inexpensive, and fun! Below, I'm sharing recipes, DIYs, and a free printable sign... that are guaranteed to let you impress your guests (with very little effort). 


The best thing about a bunny bar, is that you can use whatever you want. And, the free sign I designed will help you pull all the elements together. I printed mine at my local photo lab, and I popped it in a $2 frame from the Dollar Store.

To download the sign I designed: click on the picture below, right-click, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular 8x10 photo.




One option for setting up your bunny bar is to include hot chocolate, bunny tails (mini marshmallows), and bunny kisses (chocolate kisses).




Homemade cookies are a wonderful addition too. These "bird nest cookies" are my all time favourite Easter treat. You can check out the recipe here.




Another option is to embellish dollar store jars and add Easter treats. Below, I filled jars with cookies, marshmallows, hot chocolate, candy coated chocolate mini eggs, and chocolate carrots.



For example, I hot glued some ribbon around the mouth of a jar, hot glued a dollar store plastic bunny to the top, and filled it with foiled covered carrots. Isn't it sweet?




A hot chocolate bar is an excellent addition to any Easter celebration... small or large. And I encourage you to try out a few Easter DIYs to add to your display. Let me know how it goes, and Happy Easter!


Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)



DIY St.Patrick's Day Hot Chocolate Bar... using dollar store supplies

Who doesn't love a simple holiday celebration? And setting up a hot chocolate bar is the perfect way to add some fun to a St.Patrick's Day party... or a day at home with family. To set up an easy and inexpensive St. Patrick's Day hot chocolate bar, all you need are a few dollar store supplies, and the information below.



I had a bunch of empty mason jars. Then, I picked up: a dollar store shamrock necklace, black paint, gold chocolate coins, and Skittles.




I decided that I needed a "pot of gold", so I painted a small mason jar black.




Then, I cut up the St.Patrick's Day necklace. I used hot glue to attach one of the Shamrocks to the front of the black pot, and I set the others aside to be used later.



I filled the finished "pot of gold" with chocolate gold coins. Cute, right? I absolutely love how it turned out!



Then, I grabbed the mason jars (I already had), and added: cookies, mini marshmallows, rainbow covered Skittles, and hot chocolate mix. I attached the charms I made using the dollar store necklace... and voila! I absolutely LOVE how it turned it. 

It is festive and fun... and it was super easy and inexpensive to put together.




I hope I've inspired you to put a simple St. Patrick's Day hot chocolate bar together for your family and friends. It really is a super easy project, and its lots of fun.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)


You might also be interested in these fun ideas.

DIY Valentine's Day Hot Chocolate Bar

Little DIY details are what make holiday celebrations special... and hot chocolate bars are a wonderful way to add a little fun to a party. They are also fantastic for quiet get togethers at home with family and friends. Today, I'm sharing how EASY it is to create a DIY Valentine's Day Hot Chocolate Bar using simple (and cheap!) dollar store supplies.



I started by repurposing some mason jars that I used to make a hot chocolate bar at Christmas.



Then, I headed to the dollar store to pick up a few inexpensive supplies. I purchased: red mugs with heart-shaped handles, heart-shaped dishes for candy and chocolates, heart-shaped felt embellishments to replace the bells on the mason jars, and wafer cookies.




I filled the jars, attached the heart-shaped embellishments with twine, filled the dishes with chocolates, and made some hot chocolate. Cute, right?




You can leave the hot chocolate bar plain...




Or you can add some handcrafted decor to your display to make it a little more special.




I wrapped a milk bottle in twine (securing periodically with hot glue) to create a vase, and I filled the vase with pom poms and cardboard hearts covered with yarn.

I also made an adorable gnome from dollar store socks and a dollar store mop. You can find the full step by step tutorial for the gnome here.




A hot chocolate bar is an excellent addition to any Valentine's Day celebration... small or large. And I encourage you to try out a few Valentine's Day crafts to add to your display. Let me know how it goes, and Happy Valentine's Day!


Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)


If you are looking for more Valentine's Day inspiration, check out more than 30 Valentine's Day ideas here.

DIY Sledding Party

Winter is the perfect time for a sledding party. You can host a special afternoon for a few kids, or you can invite the whole neighbourhood for a super sledding themed birthday party. As long as you have a few fantastic treats and activities, all your party guests will have a great time. Below, I am sharing all my best tips, tricks and ideas for hosting a sledding party... including a special hot chocolate bar.


The key to the success of a sledding party (besides snow), is a fun hot chocolate bar. Using different sizes of mason jars to hold the different components of the hot chocolate bar is simple, and it creates a lot of visual interest. Fill the jars with hot chocolate, chocolate kisses, marshmallows, and cookies. Whipped cream and different types of sprinkles are fun too!


You can also decorate with dollar store snowflakes, a winter themed tablecloth, and this cute "hot chocolate bar" sign


To download this sign for free: click on the photo below, right-click, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular 8x10 photo.


Getting the party guests to decorate their own cups is a fun party activity, and it will help the kids remember which cup belongs to them... in case they want a refill. Drawing on styrofoam cups with Sharpie markers is simple and fun.


Doesn't the tablescape look cute when it all comes together?


And the hot chocolate is going to be a hit after an afternoon of sledding.


You can use sleds you have, ask guests to bring sleds, or you can make designing and crafting a duct tape sled a party activity.


And, after the party, you'll want to send guests home with sledding party favors. "Make your own snowman" kits are perfect for a winter party. (Get all the supplies you need at the dollar store: hats, scarfs, and some big buttons. Attach notes that say "Just add snow!") 

Snowman Soup (a bag containing hot chocolate, marshmallows, chocolate and a candy stir stick) is also fun.


Snowmen gum favors are adorable and inexpensive too. They are easy to make with scissors, a couple Sharpies, and a little felt (for the scarf).



A sledding party is a simple party theme, and it is perfect for winter. I love the hot chocolate bar and party favor ideas, don't you? Do you have a child that would enjoy this type of party with their friends?


Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)


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New Year's Eve Treats / Party Favours... KISS 2020 Goodbye!

2020 has been quite a year, and I think we are all ready for the goodbye party, am I right?!?! With Covid restrictions in place, New Year's Eve is going to look a lot different this year, so with that in mind, I thought it would be fun to create a fun treat for my family and friends to enjoy. Check out the perfect 2020 New Year's Eve treat (and free printable tags) below.




Isn't this a cute way to share Hershey kisses? I put a few kisses in a clear bag, and attached the tag I designed with a bit of curling ribbon.




To download the tags for FREE: click on the picture below, right-click, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular 4x6 photo.
It's pretty simple to make a bunch to share. You can enjoy them in your home, or you can deliver them for friends to enjoy while social distancing.



How are you celebrating New Year's Eve this year? Even if the group you are spending the evening with is small, it can still be a lot of fun with a few special treats.



Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)

 You can find MORE New Year's Eve ideas here.

Carnival Party Games and Activities

A backyard carnival is simple to put together. All you need are a bunch of simple games and inexpensive prizes. This post is full of simple and inexpensive DIY carnival games and activities.


Everything I made was created using my printer and some dollar store supplies. The signs were designed using Picmonkey, and they really tied everything together.

Check out this simple guessing booth. I filled two dollar store jars with candy, and the child that was able to guess closest to the amount in each jar was able to take that jar home after the party.





The straw draw was another popular game with the party guests. Bits of paper were rolled up and inserted into pieces of straws. Some of the bits of paper had "small", "medium" or "large" written on them. Then, kids picked straw pieces, and those that found prizes were able to claim them.





I also made a ring toss by hot gluing a paper towel roll onto a dollar store cake pedestal. The rings were made from pipe cleaners. (To make it a little fancier, I used hot glue to attach carnival tickets to the cake stand.)




A bean bag toss is easy to make too. Just attach point values to bowls, and start throwing bean bags to earn prizes.




I also used an x-acto knife and duct tape to turn an old box into a frisbee toss. So simple!




And what is easier than stacking cups to make a knock down game? It's a classic carnival game for sure.




Old boxes make good carnival games too. Put the lid on an angle, cut a few holes, and you've got a wonderful ball toss game.



And just to keep things interesting, and to help the kids perserve the memories from the party, set up a carnival photo booth. I have some great tips and tricks (and free printable photo props) here.





It's so easy to set up a backyard carnival, and it's popular with all ages. These carnival games and activities are simple, inexpensive, and lots of fun!


Gina Bell
(Mom and Amateur Party Planner)