Isn't it amazing how things work out. . . how one fun event can lead to another?
Such an experience occurred when my husband and I took our little grand girl to the 70th Anniversary of Oz Exhibit held at the Crown Center in Kansas City, Missouri, in February. She became so much a fan of The Wizard of Oz that her mom thought it would be fun to have that as the party theme for her upcoming third birthday!!
The party plans officially started when my DIL took a couple of her friends (one who is a great photographer), their kiddos, and our grand girl back to the exhibit for a little photo shoot. One of the pictures ended up being the basis for the birthday party invitations my DIL created!!
Our grand girl was dressed in a Dorothy outfit during this visit to the exhibit--complete with ruby slippers. In this picture, she was standing on The Yellow Brick Road. Beneath the ribbon is the script that told the party info.
I thought we needed an additional set of "ruby slippers" to add to the party decor, so I bought a "previously owned" pair of shoes at a local thrift shop. . . don't you just love the sweet scuff mark? :)
First, I covered the soles with that great friend of ours---blue painter's tape, then. . . .
When the paint was dry, I applied Martha Stewart Glitter glue (thinned with water) and sprinkled on lots and lots of red glitter!
My daughter-in-law was on a Wizard of Oz roll with all sorts of great party ideas---one of which was to create some "ruby slippers" for the Wicked Witch!
She found the perfect shoes at a garage sale, then I painted and glittered them, too! (They started out tan!)
I purchased paper mache' O and Z letters at Hobby Lobby (on sale!) then painted and glittered them Emerald City Green!!!
My DIL used "Dorothy Dress" blue gingham fabric for the dessert table! This was actually the same fabric that my friends had used on the tables at the bridal shower they hosted for her a few years earlier----it meant so much to me that we could reuse it for our grand girl's birthday party!!
We didn't have Lollipop Kids, but we found big candy lollipops at Dollar General to add to our decor!!
My DIL ordered The Yellow Brick Road cake from a local Hy-Vee grocery store....half white and half chocolate and oh so delish!! She had them create a rainbow on one side and poppies on the other.
I found the number three candle some time ago at a local surplus shop for a quarter. The Happy Birthday crown was purchased at the Dollar Tree. The little characters were part of The Wizard of Oz series given away at McDonald's some time ago!!!! My DIL actually purchased the entire set off E-bay for a birthday gift for her little princess!! What a perfect party memory.
My DIL created the cute signs for the front door and entry. . . . you will also see the darling food signs she made on the 3rd and final Wizard of Oz post.
She used paper that was left from the invitations she made FIVE years ago for their wedding!! Again, how perfect that it fit with the party theme!
She wanted flying monkeys, so we used what was on hand---a stuffed Curious George and some pink fairy wings, some nylon cord and----
a Nana who suspended the monkeys from the overhead stair rails in the entry and
we officially had Flying Monkeys!! You'll see another shot on the next post that shows the other winged simians!
This sign greeted little party guests and their parents as did. . . .
this one which was placed just above. . . . .
a little Toto on a picnic basket!
This is how The Wicked Witch appeared once the house landed on her---just before the Ruby Slippers became Dorothy's! We used the garage door for our pretend "house".
A melted Wicked Witch was outside the front door. We created this little "vignette" with my daughter's college graduation robe and a Halloween witch hat. The pail was borrowed from a friend and the broom was one I had purchased at a garage sale last summer. I'd planned on using it in a Halloween display, but I LOVE it that we used it for the OZ Party!!
My pal Bonnie donated this great Wicked Witch poster (it had actually belonged to HER daughter-in-law who no longer wanted it---lucky us !). We placed it in front of a vintage piece of Hallmark poppy wrapping paper we attached to the walls!!
I set up a Yellow Brick Road spray painting booth---what do you think about my shoe savers?
Some time ago, my son and DIL had removed these pavers from around their concrete patio (they had been placed there by the previous owners). With a little yellow paint, they were transformed into the perfect "road" to the Emerald City.
Here we were--- ready and waiting for The Wizard of Oz Party guests to arrive!!
THE STONE RABBIT loved the party invitation......he could hardly wait for the fun to begin!!!!
There will be one more post about the party---hope you will come back!! DANA
When I was a kid, a really big deal for me and my siblings would be the day we selected our official shoes of summer.
Yes, it was the day mom would buy us our THONGS!!!!
NOTE: For you young whipper snappers who are reading this post, we DID call them "thongs" in the olden days--- we didn't call them "flip-flops" until THONGS became the label for skimpy undies.
Anyway, the day we slipped our winter weary tootsies into those brand new, and still cushiony soled shoes, was officially the start of Summer Vacation!!
The three of us kids could pick out ANY color we wanted---they just all had to be different colors to avoid any issue of ownership down the road.
We became quite adept at keeping those shoes on our feet while doing nearly anything. We could ride our bikes, run races, dig for worms, chase after lightning bugs in the dark on dew slickened grass-----even climb a tree while keeping those shoes on our filthy summer feet.
The sad day usually came, well before summer had ended, when the strap that went between our toes would pull out of the sole of one (or both!) of our "thongs".
We became inventive in ways to reattach the straps, but no way really worked that well for any length of time.
It was at that point that, even with the color coding ownership technique in place, we would be forced to "borrow" the "thongs" of another sibling on occasion---even if it meant doing so without permission or concern about proper fit or the fear of sibling retribution. We would get desperate!
Many a shoe spat ensued over "who took my thongs". . . . we soon learned to hide them if they weren't on our feet. While the thongs were cheap when I was a kid, money was usually very tight. We had one pair per summer. The end.
These days, I have lots of those special shoes of summer. The amazing thing is that now, when I don't really need more than a pair, that I have this pile. The time when I needed the extra shoes was years ago--when I really put the wear and tear on them.....when I broke one before the summer had ended...when I had to wear my "school shoes" in place of the THONGS because they were the only shoes I had in my closet that would stand up to the rigors of "play"...and they were usually a bit too small because they had been purchased the previous fall, but they were what I had.......
Well, truthfully, I usually owned a pair of white tennis shoes, too, but I always liked them to stay looking as "new" as possible, so I didn't wear them except for "good". And that leads my mind in a different direction....did any of you ever put white shoe polish on your white tennis shoes? My sister and I did---after we would wash them and dry them in the sun, there would always be a discoloration around the part where the rubbery stuff came up to meet the canvas (I think we didn't always get the soap rinsed out when we washed them). Anyway, we solved that problem by applying white shoe polish to them to cover up the funky color. Yes, the white shoe polish would soon be all over our ankles as we would touch our shoes to them inadvertently. Ah, the memories of summer. . . . . .back to the topic. . . . .
Now, as an Elder Gal of Summer, I have Flip Flops with a patriotic look . . . . . .
and Flip Flops just to wear when I "garden"........
I even have a black pair with sparkly sequins on the straps for those festive summer outings. . . .
and some with fluffy stuff wrapped around the straps to slip on after a bath or shower.....
THE STONE RABBIT listened intently as I shared my tale about flip-flops, then . . . . .
he reminded me about the day I sat outside with my little grand girl.......
and cuddled and snuggled as. . . . . .
she showed me her first pair of flip-flops. . . . .
and they were PINK. . . . with sequins.
Then I realized how great it is that she and I, while separated by 50+ years in age, have yet another bond . . . . the love of Flip Flops. Especially PINK ones.
What ended up as the theme for our grand girl's recent third birthday party actually started in February, with an outing to the "70 YEARS OF OZ" exhibit held at The Crown Center in Kansas City, Missouri.
It was actually my husband's idea, her daddy's daddy, who read about the exhibit which was celebrating the seventieth anniversary of the motion picture release and was featuring an extensive collection of memorabilia from local Oz enthusiast, Jane Albright. He thought it would be a great idea for us---her grandparents here in town---to take her to it. I, her daddy's mama, was a bit afraid that it might "scare" her......you know with the green faced wicked witch and the flying monkeys, and all. She was just a BABY---- four months away from her 3rd birthday at the time!!!!
We ran the idea by her mom and dad---I promised if I saw anything I perceived as "scary" that I would promptly cover the eyes of our sweet little grand girl and whisk her OUT of that place.
It took about 12 seconds for us to obtain permission to have her for a few hours and expose her to The Land of Oz...........
Dorothy, Glenda and Toto were waiting for us as we entered the exhibit.
Her Grandfather was fairly quick to yank her little hand from Glenda's dress----the sign clearly said "Please Do Not Touch Dorothy or Glenda". That's oh so hard for a little non-reader to know---or understand! Glenda said it was OK and that the little one just needed to "Follow the Yellow Brick Road!!!!"
And the little one DID "Follow the Yellow Brick Road" !!!!
She saw The Scarecrow, who only wanted a brain!!!
She saw The Tin Man, who was hoping for a heart!!!
Then she saw The Lion, who wanted some courage!!!
Oh my goodness, they all passed through the Poppy Field-----
until they found The Wizard of Oz!!!
Several of The Munchkins were "working away"---trying to help the Grand Girl "find her way home to Kansas!"
First, she had to climb up into The Wizard's palace and zooooom down the magical slide!!!
When she reached the bottom, The Wizard had arranged for a balloon ride back home.
When the balloon "landed", the little girl loved looking at the amazing collection of Oz items!!!
After a quick lunch to regain her strength from all of the excitement of visiting The Land of Oz, her Grandpa took her outside to the fountains......
for a little exercise and........
It was a gorgeous day in FEBRUARY---in Missouri!!
While they were outside, I visited one of my favorite shops inside Crown Center!!!
They had lots of Oz stuff for sale--including the sweetest little Dorothy dresses and "ruby slippers".
When we arrived home that afternoon, I shared with THE STONE RABBIT our Oz Adventures at Crown Center.....then I read the story to him about Dorothy, The Wizard, the Scarecrow, the Lion, the Tin Man, Toto, the Wicked Witch, Glenda the Good Witch.......he LOVED every word.
As he hopped off to share the story with his little yard ornament friends, he turned to me and said, "I hope I can hop down a Yellow Brick Road someday!"
She purchased the two yard length of PINK wool to use in the construction of a suit.
I knew that my sister did some sewing, but I did not know she had the skills to make a garment as complicated as a suit. Perhaps her intent was to have someone make it for her or maybe she wanted the challenge or maybe she was a whole lot better than what I realized.
For some reason, the suit was never completed.
My sister passed away nearly twenty years ago. She was just forty years old.
She had been ill, but we did not expect her to die----after all, we were still dealing with the death of our father, who had just passed away eight months before.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Somehow, my mom ended up with the suit fabric.
I don't know when she acquired it---whether my sister had given up on ever making a suit and thought mom would do something with it, or if my brother-in-law asked mom if she would like to have it after my sister died.
My mother later passed the PINK treasure on to me.
I've had it for many years now.
I have never been able to use it--to cut it. You see, I love it just the way it is----even with the moth holes that have appeared in it over time.
I just have to look at my two yards of PINK treasure and hold it----- and I am quickly filled with memories of my life with my sister----a period of time that was far, far too short.
I have to say, we were best of friends---although, while growing up, we weren't.
My appreciation of her as a "person", and not just a pain in the neck sister, started the summer she lived with me and my roommate---three of us in a studio apartment--- with no air conditioning.She was almost 18 and I was almost 20.
She even got a job at the same place I worked---within walking distance from the apartment because we didn't have a car!!
That summer was filled with a whole lot of "partying" and bonding. I soon realized that she was so much more than the pest she used to be. She was my friend and confidant.
The following summer, she was my Maid of Honor. Not long after that, she was also married---she flew to Hawaii to wed her intended while he was on leave from serving in the Vietnam War.
She remained in the same area as we lived until her husband returned from the war. He was then reassigned to a base in Nevada. She and her husband moved away and it broke my heart.
We always stayed in touch, whether by phone calls (when we could afford the long-distance fees) or written notes.
She gave birth to her daughter while they were still stationed in Nevada.
My excited parents flew out to visit their first grandchild----I still love to look at the photos of them gathered around the tiny baby. Mom and Dad were sooooo young----and so was my sister.
Years brought many changes and moves.
They never lived near us again, but we continued to stay in contact.
We shared the events in our lives---the good times and
We spoke of our ups and
Times were rough for her little family and mine in those early years, but we still tried to make the best of what we had and continue to work for improvement.
She loved her daughter so much and she was so great about keeping me updated on what her little girl was doing. Her daughter was a talented actress and singer as a youngster----and she has evolved into a even greater talent as an adult.
I know her mom is watching from above and clapping the loudest whenever she performs on stage.
I remember she had many interests and loves. Close to the top of her Love List, was her love for her little family -----
and the LOVE she had for her poodle, named Danny.
I always thought Danny was a funny looking little thing as his lower jaw jutted out and exposed his bottom teeth. She didn't care---she was nuts about him and Danny was nuts about her, too.
I don't recall if she ever had a cat once she married and moved away. We always had cats when we were growing up at home and she loved them then. I'm pretty sure she would love the critters that live in my house now.
Whenever we were able to get together in person, we would jabber from the moment we first saw each other, until we parted. We were never at a loss for words.
We laughed a lot----especially when we each had our own little kids. They always brought us such joy.
While I think she might have been more "serious" around others, we were usually not that way when we were together. We had fun. I loved being with her.
When she became so ill, I called her frequently.
I felt so helpless.
We lived several hours apart and I had two young children. Plus, I had just started a new job.
It was awful not being able to be with her. . . . and I felt terribly guilty.
The phone calls I made to her eased my troubled conscious a bit, but I didn't really know if I was making life worse for her by calling so often......
until the last time I spoke with her.
During our very last conversation, she told me how much my phone calls meant to her.
I felt better.........
sadly, she passed away shortly after that.
But all is not sad........
when her daughter, my beautiful niece, married (about 10 years ago) it was to a fellowshe had met while living in Texas. It turned out that he was a local boy---and they later MOVED to our town!!!!
What a miracle that she would fall in love with someone from our area and eventually call this place home.
On top of that gift, it came as a great surprise to learn that her mother-in-law worked (and still does) with a dear friend of mine. Her mother-in-law just happens to be one of the nicest people ever put on this earth. My niece is so lucky to have her and I am, too! She and I have become very good friends over the years.
Here I am with my beautiful red-headed niece.
How lucky am I to live so near to her and her family !!!
I am also lucky that my sister didn't finish that suit.
Built in 1920, Brookside was Kansas City, Missouri's, first suburban shopping district. It continues to be the home of many wonderful shops and restaurants and is just minutes south of the Country Club Plaza shopping area.
Brookside is also the site of a wonderful annual art fair. If you click HERE you will see many photos of participating artists in this year's event.
We attended on the last day of the fair and it was still packed with shoppers and. . . . . .
cute little doggies. Some of them sported terrific clothing and great hair cuts!
There was the "unique" and. . . . . . . .
more pups and. . . . .
more "unique" and . . . . . .
more pooches and . . . . .
little kiddos enjoying the "unique" and . . . . . . .
more well dressed canines and . . . . . .
a fabulous artist, named DANA FORRESTER, whom I have long admired and . . . . . . .
he was so gracious to pose with some of his fabulous work and spend lots of time talking with us. What a small world---we found out he lives right down the street from us! As I was enjoying talking with him and looking at his wonderful work, I realized the lady who came into his booth and who was also thrilled with his prints and paintings, and also started speaking with him was . . . . . .
one of my long time friends---Diane!! We've known each other for (gasp) almost forty years (and we still look as cute as we did on the first day we met!!!). . . . and then I met her friend, Connie, and . . . .
we realized we BOTH go to the same hairstylist (note the darling hairdos!!!) and she lives in the same neighborhood as Diane (and so does my hair stylist!) and THEN they introduced me to their other friend, Mary Lou (for some reason, I didn't get her picture!) and we found out we go to the same church! I don't recall if she lives in the same neighborhood as they do, but heck, it was all so much fun to figure all of this out!! After several minutes of tying up Dana's booth with our excited conversation, we continued on our tour of the wonderful works of art and . . . .
more cute doggies and then . . . . . .
I purchased one of the great souvenir posters for the art fair painted by the fabulous artist, MICHEL TSOURIS. She was so nice to autograph it for me and . . . . . . . .it was soon time to head home.
THE STONE RABBIT was really impressed with pictures of the art fair and with Michel's poster. He asked me if I would let him use some of my supplies so he could brush up on his painting skills.
I think Twiggy was a great subject, don't you?
Also, I think THE STONE RABBIT has some hidden talent---he always surprises me with the things he can do!!
My Pink Saturday Post is ready on Thursday this week because I'm taking a little Blog Break for a few days. I KNEW you all would be eager to see who won the little PINK flamingo party favor I wrote about last Saturday (click here to read that post). I had it left from my "Potluck Luau Pink Saturday 1st Birthday Party Post" (click here to read that post).
I put the name of everyone who signed up for the awesome chance to receive the sweet little Pink Flamingo on a piece of paper. I folded up each one and placed the slips of paper in my flamingo gift bag.
THEN, when I paid a visit to my OUTSTANDINGLY talented hair stylist on Wednesday, I asked her if she would select the winner of my giveaway.
First, Debbie stirrrrrrrred up the names, then - - - - - - -
she selected the winner.
Oh, my goodness!!! The lucky winner is SANDY!!!
Sandy does not have a blog, but she is a consistent reader and COMMENTER. The most amazing thing is that Sandy was also one of the winners in my 100th Post Giveaway earlier this year!! Some folks are just "lucky". I think Sandy is one of those Lucky Folks!! I'll bet she will be a Power Ball winner one day-----ooooh, I hope she remembers me and THE STONE RABBIT when that happens! ;)
THE STONE RABBIT was so thrilled when I told him the little PINK flamingo would be going to live with Sandy!!
The two of them have grown very close over the past two weeks, but THE STONE RABBIT knows the little bird is going to a wonderful home!! Sandy has even shared with me how, since reading Pink Saturday posts for so long, she notices the color PINK now every place she goes!!
Please visit Beverly's blog, HOW SWEET THE SOUND (starting on Saturday morning) for a long list of other bloggers with PINKS to share!!