Friday, May 21, 2010

Graduation Party

The graduation party was a hit! As promised, I'm sharing the links for the how-to's so you can copy-cat if you'd like. I didn't reinvent the wheel on this one but it still turned out cute.

And this has nothing to do with graduation, but aren't these cute?! I made these in the midst of frantically trying to complete all of the graduation party projects. I gave (most) of them to a friend at church who has a 2-year old, a newborn and strep. She needed mini-cupcakes. That makes it sound a little less frivolous, right?
Want to make them, too? Here's Bakerella's how-to:

Back to graduation...
Any idea what these became?...

These were a labor of love, but worth it. As we were decorating, a precious 10-year old boy who attends the center was just bouncing from table to table because he was ecstatic that they were made of candy. Needless to say, that made it worth it!
Bakerella is the genius behind this idea and her tutorial is here:

This picture was taken close to midnight... I'm tired just typing that.

I {love} tissue pom poms/tissue paper balls. They were easy and relatively cheap to make, but they made a big statement. So cute.
There are a lot of tutorials out there, but All Things Thrifty has my favorite one. Find it here:

The graduation party was held at a youth development center to honor four high school seniors who have attended the center through the years. The center is downtown, in a brick building with bars on the windows and big locks on the doors. To get in you have to ring a doorbell because it is locked at ALL times for safety reasons. A few years ago, before we moved closer, I volunteered on a mission trip where we spent the night in the center and overhauled the insides - painting, cleaning, etc. There was only one car among us and it was an old beat-up van. The most valuable thing inside it was a 4-year old bottle of sunscreen. We were told to take everything out of the van before dark, but we figured the very few items we had (of no value) in plain sight wouldn't be a problem. We were wrong. By 1 am the van had been broken into and the few contents inside (half a pack of Dr. Pepper, a few old textbooks, even the sunscreen) had been stolen. It's a rough neighborhood, and the kids who grow up in it deal with rough situations as a result.

The center is a bright spot for the teens and adolescents who attend tutoring and mentor sessions there. The building's history alone screams of how needed the center is. Before churches across Texas came together to revamp it, it was a crack house owned by a local drug dealer. The walls of this building have seen horrible things, but now it shelters troubled teens and elementary-aged kids who sometimes don't have food to eat, let alone help with homework.
The flags are a free download from Bird Crafts. Find it here:
To graduate from high school is a big accomplishment regardless, but to do so in the environment these kids grow up in is incredible. And this youth development center is not only helping educate kids, it's saving their lives by giving them hope and a path to follow.

And that's why, even though I had a tiny budget to decorate 10 tables and an entire (huge!) room, it had to be special. When we left, my husband told me it was probably the fanciest that place has ever looked. I don't know about that, but I hope it looked formal, it was a big deal. Because it is. And those four graduating seniors needed to be able to walk in that room and know it.

Congrats class of 2010!
Don't forget about the free graduation gift tags and labels download in the previous post!


  1. This looks amazing, Sarah! You did a wonderful job and I think it's so great what you're doing for these graduates. I'm sure it was a very special night for them!!

  2. WOW§

    What aprtay!!!

    I am so impressed by all the dedication, hard work and love that went into making it!!!

    Congratulations to the class of 2010 and to you!!! :)

    Thank you for using my freebies, I feel honoured to have somehow been a little part of this great event!

    Do you mind if I post about it over at Bird Crafts?

    Thanks again,

  3. Thank you everyone! Yes, of course you can post about it! I'd love that.
    I just ask that you link back to me.

    And thanks, Jill! Your words made my day.

  4. Sarah,

    I've posted something about it today! :)
    Hope you like it!


  5. Wow! I'm so happy that the party was a success and I hope the seniors truly recognize what an achievement it was!



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