How to make the best Mickey Mouse Goodie Bags

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I was recently selected to host a Disney Preschool Playdate, so I got to planning right away and my favorite part of any party are the goodie bags! Since our theme was Mickey Mouse and Friends I had a lot of fun planning and finding the best goodies I could find for all the kiddos.

Candy from The Candy Jar

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First is the candy; our local and super amazing candy shop The Candy Jar, sponsored the most adorable baggies in coordinating colors to match our theme. They not only made the bags for us but took their time to help me with the colors and kinds of candy that work best for the ages of the children and the theme. I wasn’t sure what I wanted but they were super kind and helpful and made us some seriously gorgeous baggies. So next time you need candy for your event make sure to contact The Candy Jar. They also offer birthday parties and corporate events.

They are located in the Hill Country Galleria: 12700 Hill Country Blvd., Suite T-110 across from the brand new pavilion.

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Mickey Chips from Good Health Snacks

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After the candy was taken care of I wanted a yummy but healthy snack and of course Disney themed to add to the bags. After a bit of research I found the most adorable chips! Good Health’s DISNEY MICKEY Shaped Veggie Chips are packed with awesomeness like nutrients (vitamins!) from tomatoes, spinach, beets, broccoli and carrots to deliver a truly delicious snack without the kiddos knowing they are getting their veggies! I’m all for sneaky ways to trick my kids into eating healthy.

You can find Good Health’s DISNEY MICKEY Shaped Veggie Chips on Amazon, Target and several other retailers. They also offer an array of amazing and healthy snacks for the whole family!

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Chocolate Covered Oreo Cookies from CANDYCRAFTS

 

During my research I found the most adorable chocolate covered oreo cookies from Etsy shop CANDYCRAFTSthey sell an array of chocolate covered oreos and candies. Perfect as favors for your next party! They ship natiowide, and I most say I was a bit worried about the heat but they add ice packs and everything came in perfect condition and they are soooooooooo good!

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Personalized Mickey cups from KresgeKreations

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I also wanted some toys and keepsakes, but I wanted to make sure it would be something the kids could use after, nothing disposable and that ends up in the trash. After a bit of research I found the most gorgeous personalized cups from Etsy shop KresgeKreationsThey offer tons of adorable personalized high quality plastic cups with lids and straws and the Disney font just added that extra touch and made it so perfect! Lindsay can work with any design and font to make sure your next party is a hit! How adorable are these? And the best part is how the kids will be able to use them for a long time after and remember the great time they had at our party! Aaaaaaand no more wasted cups at the party since everyone can keep track of their own cup. You can find Kresge Kreations on Etsy and Instagram.

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Social Media Snapshots from HP
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Then Disney Parks though our mamas deserved something special too so they sent some of HP Social Media Snapshots. These allow you to print your favorite photos from your social media apps! No more editing or waiting.

  • Print your photos from your smartphone.
  • Decorate your space with photos!
  • Print, peel, and stick! Removes easily

Goodie Bags from Party at your Door

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Last but not least we needed something to put all those amazing goodies in. And as an Austinite I had to go with the most beautiful and talented mama duo Party at your Door! From custom party decor, confetti, banners, costumes, party favors and more, they have it covered. I gave them my idea and they did not disappoint! The goodie bags are so incredibly well made, everything cut and glued with precision. I loved the combination of colors and how they made Minnie with poke-a-dot paper to make it extra cute! They also made the tags for the candy baggies and lots of decorations and a pin the bow on the Minnie game you can read more about HERE.

You can find Party at your Door on their Etsy shop, Instagram and Facebook.

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Hope you guys enjoyed all the ideas, make sure to check out all the shops and get your party on!

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100 Free Skill Building Practice Questions for Pre-K to 8th Graders

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This post has been sponsored byTestingMom.com, CreativeMeli.com was compansated and/or received services or products for free. The opinions and ideas expressed here are my own and were not influenced in any way. 

Schooling is hard, being a mother of three my children’s education is of the outpost importance. We even moved to our new home based solely on the school district. And having kids ranging from 5th grade through almost Kinder makes homework time gets interesting everyday, while one kids needs help with multiplication and division the other is trying to figure out how to spell, and I’m sure it’s only going to get harder.


Tutoring can get soooooo pricey and again! three kids is no joke! But what if you’re kids are struggling or you just want them to succeed but life just doesn’t allow you to sit and explain everything or you just don’t get it, hey! no shame if you don’t remember what an isosceles is. Lord knows I haven’t solved for x and almost a decade, and unless you’re a mathematician, teacher or astronaut odds are you haven’t either.

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Enter TestingMom.comTestingMom.com is an online educational program that’s designed by parents to help other parents and their kids aged Pre-K through 8th grade develop a lifelong love of learning. Their site features fun skill-building games, challenging learning activities and test prep materials for all 50 states (including state standards and Common Core). Parents can customize each child’s program by choosing practice questions for state standard, Common Core and IQ tests, assessments required for entry into gifted and talented programs as well as testing required for private school admissions.

For all my Texas mamas out there, that’s that spooky STAAR test, eeek! There’s an array of education programs to help you child in reading, math, vocabulary or anything he/she is struggling with or simply needs a bit of a notch you just can’t give him/her. My 5th grader is amazing at taking tests, but my 1st grader needs a little more help, and TestingMom.com has all the resources to get her excited about tests and for me as her mother to make sure she’ll do her best. You can get started with TestingMom.com by downloading 100 Free Skill Building Practice Questions for Pre-K to 8th Graders, this prepares kids for most state tests or just writing or kindergarten preparedness.

TestingMoms.com has made a huge difference in my daughter, she’s enjoying learning again and it’s such a wonderful feeling to see her thrive within such a short amount of time. She’s enjoying all the questions, they keep the kiddos entertained while learning and she’s loving it! I wish I had this resource when my oldest was her age. You can read reviews and testimonials HERE. There’s nothing cuter than your little kid coming to you running so excited about something new she learned and to see the dinner conversations morphed into the kids bragging about their educational progress.

Do your kids struggle at school? Are you concerned about their learning or just don’t have time or money to deal with tutoring? Let me know in the comments what your needs are.

Check out TestingMOm.com reviews HERE and their testimonials HERE

 

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Mean Green: Meet my new favorite cleaning supplies

This is a compensated campaign as part of my new role as a Mean Green Brand Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

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So, I really hate cleaning… there I said it and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one. There’s so many things I rather do with my time than scrubbing and sweeping. So I am always on the look out for new products that help me get the job done as fast as possible. Enter Mean Green. When I received the invitation to become a Mean Green Ambassador, I was super excited but also a bit skeptical, you see, becoming my brand ambassador means I am fully behind the brand, it means I truly enjoy their products so I obviously wanted to make sure I really liked them before I told you guys about them. And boy! Was I in for a pleasant surprise. I received the following products:

ORANGE CHAMP

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  • CUTS TOUGH GREASE & GRIME
  • SURFACE SAFE
  • WITH ORANGE POWER

Cut through tough grease and grime!

Mean Green Orange Champ is a multi-purpose, multi-surface cleaner and degreaser with orange power. Orange Champ cuts through tough grease and grime leaving a fresh citrus aroma, a scent of clean. It gives a powerful clean that is safe on most washable surfaces throughout your family’s home.

Orange Champ makes my kitchen smell so fresh and so clean! even when the kids are extra gross, it removes everything! from our counter tops and table. I’m seriously loving this one!

MILDEW DESTROYER

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  • KILLS MILDEW
  • CLEANS SOAP SCUM
  • WITH BLEACH

Mean Green Mildew Destroyer is a must have for cleaning and disinfecting areas with mildew and soap scum like the bathroom, kitchen, patio and more. Mildew Destroyer is a bleach-based cleaner and disinfectant. It destroys what is growing in dark, damp spaces.

It has been used to clean and disinfect areas which are common for mold, mildew, athlete’s foot, salmonella, Staphylococcus aureus (bacteria) and soap scum. Those spaces are showers, bathtubs, sinks, toilets, tile and grout, floors and garbage cans.Mildew Destroyer is also effective against Salmonella enterica and Staphylococcus aureus in 30 seconds.

I was amazed by how strong and potent the Mildew Destroyer was, as a mother of two boys my bathrooms have a tendency for smelling like a public restroom, sometimes even like a potta-potty during SXSW. Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit but it sure gets disgusting. The Mildew Destroyer worked fast and it stayed clean for longer. It was also super easy to use and within a couple minutes my bathroom was squeaky clean. It goes without saying that you need to use caution with this one. It has bleach and it is pretty strong so make sure you leave your windows open so avoid inhaling the fumes.

AUTO & GARAGE

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  • PROVEN TO OUTCLEAN COMPETITION ON GARAGE GREASE AND GRIME
  • #1 HEAVY DUTY CLEANER
  • SAFELY REMOVES ROAD GRIT, GREASE & GRIME

Mean Green® Auto & Garage is a concentrated, multi-purpose cleaner and degreaser. Proven to beat other brands on tough grease and grime. Specially formulated to remove and dissolve petroleum based grease, grime, and oil from engines, tools, and concrete, to outdoor furniture, grills, painted surfaces, and more. Mean Green is the #1 Heavy Duty cleaner!

I’m not much of an auto girl, but since we’re still not done building and haven’t really decided what we are doing with our floors downstairs, we still have concrete. Which mean EVERY.SINGLE.STAIN. stays put. No matter how much I try once it hits the concrete is stays there forever. Well the amazing Auto & Garage cleaner took some of the stains off that I has already given up on! Fast, easy and not too stinky.

SUPER STRENGTH 

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  • PROVEN TO CLEAN BETTER THAN OTHER BRANDS
  • MULTI-SURFACE CLEANER FOR INSIDE & OUT
  • CONCENTRATED FORMULA

Mean Green Super Strength Cleaner & Degreaser is a powerful, multi-purpose cleaner and degreaser that can get grease out and eliminate grime from most surfaces. From fabric to concrete, Mean Green has been a trusted brand for more than 20 years. It is used to clean just about everything, inside and outside the home, business, garage, restaurant, work or hobby shop.

This one is the big brother of multipurpose cleaners, I used it the day after I had the bright idea to feed my little monsters couscous, I was too tired to clean after dinner so the next day there was dried on couscous everywhere! A job that usually takes about 3-4 disinfectant wipes took only a couple spritz of Super Strength and a quick wipe and Voila! I didn’t have to scrub a thing!

Check out this House graphic to see how versatile the Mean Green products are: MeanGreenHouse-withcopy (1)

To learn more about Mean Green and to find a retailer near you make sure to check out their website

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Everything is better now that SoCozy meets HEB


I blessed my daughter with curly hair, the same curly hair that drove me insane well into my teenage years. You see, my mom has super thin, straight hair so she didn’t really know what to do with it.  The struggle was real guys! 😂

She barely had any hair so the longest time! I couldn’t wait for pigtails and bows. Little did I know I would have to wait until she was almost 4, for her luscious curls to start coming in. And my goodness did they! We went from practically bald to Annie in 2.5 seconds. Knowing the struggles of curly hair, I was determined to make sure her curls were always pretty and shiny and I made sure she learned to never EVER brush them while dry. But I encountered a huge issue, although I wanted her to have lovely, bouncy curls, I didn’t want to start demaging her hair with the copious amounts of stuff I put on mine. I know the days I accept the curls…


It has truly been a struggle, last year she wore tight pony tails, every day because her hair was just too crazy to wear it any other way. Not only was it time consuming in the morning, but her little scalp started getting itchy from all the gel I was using. She even ended up at the nurses office a few times and I got that super scary your child might have lice call, only for the nurse to not find any bugs on her hair but to completely mess up her hair for the rest of the day. 


So when I was asked to try SoCozy, I was so excited! Could this be the end of my little princess hair woes?  SoCozy is this awesome line of salon formulas for the unique hair needs of kids between the ages of 2 and 12 years old. SoCozy products are non-toxic and made without parabens, formaldehyde, sulfates, phthalates, synthetic color, propylene glycol. Free of alcohol, gluten, wheat, peanuts and tree nuts.



I could not believe how great her hair looked! The bouncy, soft curls I’ve always wanted, with a lovely scent and zero guilt! She’s loving wearing her hair down and can’t wait to start school without crunchy hair ever again!


Meet Cozy Freidman, founder of SoCozy. Read her awesome story and why she started SoCozy. Here are a few awesome facts about the SoCozy company and products: 

  • So Smart – Genius is more like it. We believe knowledge is power, which is why education is at our core – the pulse of our brand. Advice, solutions, tips, trends – we serve as an extensive resource for moms, kids, stylists and salon owners.
  • So Safe – No nasties in here; just good, clean, honest formulations with ingredients that perform at the highest level. Safe and effective – and completely non-toxic – it’s great hair minus the harsh chemicals.
  • So Easy – Because being a parent isn’t always easy, we make haircare that is: simple, fun, multi-functional products that streamline tub time, as well as solutions targeting specific hair concerns to make styling a snap.
  • So Cool – Take a strand. Through our products, website, social channels and unique collaborations, we encourage and support individuality. All kids, any hair type – we make it our mission to build confidence and inspire originality. Being you is our idea of cool.


And right now you are in luck! HEB  has a super HOT deal! Get $4 off any SoCozy products with in store coupon! 
The  following products are the ones you can find at your local HEB:

  • Cinch 3in1
  • Cinch Detangler
  • Boo! Shampoo
  • Boo! Spray
  • Boing Curl Shampoo
  • Boing Curl Conditioner
  • Behave Styling Cream

This awesome HOT HEB promotion runs from August 7th to August 21st, so make sure you don’t miss out! 

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Quinoa Pancakes with my own MockMill


As many of you know I was recently diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease. After the diagnosis I made it my goal to find as many natural ways to help me heal, my illness doesn’t have a cure and the idea of having to take medication for the rest of my life was a scary scary thought. So that’s when my gluten free journey began.

As an avid baker, it was super hard to give up my baked goods, all the cupcakes, cakes and just the fun baking and creating used to bring to my life. I tried out many alternatives, but goodness some were just gross! It was difficult to find compliant ingredients. When I finally found a few flours I liked, it seriously got pricey. After so many years paying very little for flour (because conventional flour is very cheap). I really wanted to mill my own grains but all the mills I found were super pricey and honestly I just don’t have the counter space, so when I was asked to review the Mockmill from Wolfgang Mock I was thrilled!


I decided to play around with rice, amaranth and even tigernuts! Stay tuned for my trials with milling tigernuts! Then I decided to use my family’s favorite protein packed grain: QUINOA! I wanted to make sure I started with something easy so by the request of my bit gang we tried pancakes. Here’s the modified recipe because working with freshly ground grains it’s a bit different.


AIP Gluten Free Quinoa Pancakes

Ingredients:

2 cups quinoa flour
2 tbsp. coconut sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
2 tbsp. coconut oil, plus more for cooking
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 gelatin eggs

1. In a bowl, whisk together quinoa flour, coconut sugar, baking powder, and cinnamon.
2. In another bowl, whisk together coconut milk, coconut oil, vanilla, and gelatin eggs until well-combined.
3. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until combined.
4. Heat an oiled, skillet over medium heat. Add batter to skillet in 1/4 cup scoops, and cook until bubbles just begin to form.
5. Flip and cook the other side for 1-2 minutes.
6. Serve with syrup and top with your favorite fruit.

Everyone LOVED them! They were super delicious! And honestly you can’t beat freshly ground delicious grains. And the Mockmill did an outstanding job. I was amazed by how fine the quinoa was and how easy it was to do it. If you love to bake gluten free or not you NEED to get yourself a Mockmill.

The MockMill uses STONES to grind the grains and has little dots  on the side to choose how fine you want to grin. The attachment fits ALL KitchenAid mixers, uses ceramic grinding stones and comes with a 2 year manufacturer’s warranty.


Amazon has the Mockmill for $199, which is already an awesome deal but since I am working with Mockmill for this campaign they have an AWESOME deal that you absolutely NEED to get! They have the packages below which are normally priced at $259 but are now on SALE for ONLY $179 with my special PROMO code!! Just use code CREATIVEMELIMOCK at checkout on the payment page to get that $80 discount (expires August 31, 2016). Go HERE to get yours. DON’T forget the promo code or you won’t get the sale price. The book is $25 you get up to 8 POUNDS of grains to start with your Mockmill!
For less than the mill costs alone on Amazon! How amazing is that?!? Gluten free and regular packages are available.

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Gluten Free package includes:

  • One MockMill
  • One cookbook reprint “Flour Power”
  • 32 oz. Hazzard Free Farms Floriani Flint Corn
  • 16 oz. Maskal Brown Teff
  • 24 oz. Breadtopia Organic Buckwheat
    Make sure you choose package #4 for gluten free!
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Buddha’s Brew: Best kombucha EVER! 


After I got diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis I began a journey of healthy eating, food is such a huge part of our lives and it truly affects us in many ways.

I started to follow AIP (autoimmune paleo/protocol) and the results were amazing! I lost weigh and started feeling like myself again, but there was still something missing. A friend recommended probiotics and told me I need to heal my gut too. I was already taking so many supplements and pills I didn’t want another one so I turned to fermented foods. It took some time to get used to it but that’s when my love affair with kombucha began.


Although I loved kombucha I needed to drink quite a bit to get the probiotics I needed. Until I found Buddha’s Brew! Omg life changed! It’s not only delicious but each 16 oz bottle has 19 billion probiotics, 19 BILLION! And it comes in some insanely delicious flavors, my two favorite are peach mint and pineapple greens.


Here’s a bit more about them:

“Buddha’s Brew Kombucha was born from the farmer’s markets of Austin, Texas. What began as a simple curiosity, grew to selling at the Sunset Valley farmers market. Seeing the increasing demand and wanting to satisfy more craving thirsts, Kimberly teamed up with John-Paxton to begin a business. A passion for meditation and spiritual practice along with Kombucha’s tendency to produce calm whole-body energy led to the name, Buddha’s Brew. A scenic warehouse on the greenbelt was selected in South Austin and after a year of working with the city learning to be contractor, a commercial brewery was born.

Today, we still brew out of our original location. We continually strive to find ways to be more efficient with our humble space and have added a few gardens on the property for good measure. Presently Buddha’s Brew employs around 20+ Kombucha fanatics with a desire to bring our delicious and alive Kombucha to Austin, Tx and beyond.”

Simple Ingredients – Powerful Kombucha. They brew over 15 Flavors in 16oz jars with rotating seasonal(s) in mason jars. Their Flavors are also available in 67oz Growler Jugs & 5 Gallon Kegs.

You can find Buddha’s Brew at several several stores and farmers markets in Austin and surrounding areas, for a list of places go HERE.


We’ve partnered with Buddha’s Brew to giveaway, two lucky Creative Meli readers will win a super cool t-shirt! Just enter HERE

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The Secret Life of Pets character collectibles from GM


Have you seen the specially marked boxes of General Mills Big G Cereals (Honey Nut Cheerios, Cheerios Multi Grain, Lucky Charms, Trix and Cocoa Puffs) they made me feel like a little girl! They now come with free character collectibles from the New movie The Secret Life of Pets, including: Max the pampered terrier mix, Duke the massive mutt, Snowball the leader of the flushed pets, Buddy the sarcastic dachshund, Gidget the naïve, but gutsy Pomeranian and Chloe the fat cat.


So what you might ask what can you do with these adorable collectables? Well, you can hang them from backpacks, use as keychains, or… you can use them as the perfect project to keep your little ones busy this summer! What better than to make them a house!


After you gobble up the delicious cereal, make sure you get your collectable and keep the box! You can use it to make them a little house to play and promote imagination. If your kids are anything like mine this would provide hours or entertainment, specially if they already watched the movie.


All you need is some cardboard, you can save the box or get a pre made house at your local craft stor and paint! Isn’t our house adorable?! And the kids are just having a blast with it! They loved choosing the colors and painting it 😊


Check out the adorable Crusoe the Celebrity Dachshund on the grassy green carpet for The Secret Life of Pets. HERE

Disclaimer: Compensation was provided by General Mills via MomTrends. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions of General Mills or Momtrends. 

 

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Visiting my local At Home store 


I was invited to check out the new campus line at my local At Home store. I have been wanting to visit at home but just hadn’t. Little did I know all the awesomeness I was missing.


Their selection is awesome! It is truly great to see all the different displays and get ideas on how to decorate your own  home.


The new campus collections is lovely and so different! They had different color schemes and themes so I’m sure you can find something to decorate your or your kids dorm.


I chose a few things! Among them this lovely pillow! Isn’t it darling? And soooooo true!


If you haven’t already make sure you check out your local At Home. I promise you won’t be disappointed! Also make sure you join their email list, every week they have an insane deal you can take advantage of!

Have you been to At Home? What’s your favorite section? Share your awesome finds with me!

 

*Disclosure: I was compensated and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free. All opinions are 100% my own.

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Making Care Bears at build a Bear!

 
You guys know my undying love for Care Bears, so when I had the chance to take the kiddos to make their own Care Bear at Build a bear I think I was more excited then them! 😂 yes, I might be that kind of mom…  

As soon as we walked in we were greeted with excitement and the kind of joy you can only find at places where the sweetest memories are made. They explained the process to the kids and after each picked a Care Bear, it was time to fill them up. Here’s the adorable video of the super thoughtful girl making sure this was unforgettable for K.

  
 
 Everyone we met was kind and super sweet and the whole experience was simply adorable.   

How about some adorable clothing for your bears? From pjs to dresses! Aren’t these darling?!  

After you’re done you can register your new stuffy friend, pick their name and make sure they have your information in case three get lost.   

Thank you so much to Care Bears and Build a Bear for allowing my kids to experience this! And now we have adorable bears to snuggle with. ❤️

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Frozen Party Series: Tutu-Rela Review

I am so excited to share with you guys one of my latest Etsy shop finds: Tutu-Rela Boutique. They make the most darling tutus and I just had to have some for my Frozen themed party/sleeover.

My daughter K seriously thinks she is a princess. And she shows it in the way she dances, the way talks, acts…even in the way she dresses. I am not a big fan of huge puffy dresses, specially in super humid and hot crazy Texas weather. So image my delight (and my daughters) when we found these gorgeous tutus?! Not only are they light and fresh but they can be added to any outfit to make any little girl feel like a princess. Can I say perfect for a birthday party?

I got the idea for the table setup online and I couldn’t wait to see the little girls faces when the saw them! Each little girl got a tutu from Tutu-Rela Boutique, made to order for each little girl. I can’t tell you how happy they were and how much they enjoyed dancing and playing in their tutus.

 

The tutus are made with white, purple, and turquoise tulle and decorated with blue ribbon and snowflakes. Tutus are handmade. No-Sew tutus are made with elastic waist. Itty Bitty and Extra Small tutus are made with crochet waist. Please specify elastic waist for these sizes.

Tutu-Rela is an adorable Etsy shop that makes all their tutus to order and they offer an array of colors, sizes and they have a super friendly and accommodating customer service. They also offer headbands, tutu totes and decorated hangers. They are super detailed with the sizing and want to make sure everything surpasses your expectations. Make sure to check out their shop HERE and follow them on Instagram

***Disclosure: I receive this product and/or compensation. Neither influenced my opinions, the review is based on my own experience and opinions.

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