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a gender neutral shared kids' room...

a gender neutral shared kids' room / oh joy!

It can be hard to style a room for siblings, especially when its boy and girl each with their own personalities. So today, we're showing you how to create a gender neutral bedroom that's bright, colorful, and fun. Here's are some tips you can apply to your own space...

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oh joy! pumpkins...

Artist Pumpkins... / via Oh Joy!

We're halfway through October, which means Halloween is right around the corner! Over the last few years, we've shown you different Oh Joy! versions of painted pumpkins. It's a great way to get creative, add some color to the traditional black and orange holiday decor, and requires a lot less clean-up than making jack-o-lanterns. Here's a look back and some inspiration for this year's pumpkin decorating for you...  

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bringing yellow into fall...

how to bring yellow into fall / oh joy!

Yellow has become one of my favorite colors over the last couple years both in fashion and home decor. It's often seen as a summery color but it transitions so well into fall if you know how to use it. Here are some tips for making yellow feel just right for fall...

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how we celebrate birthdays at oh joy!

birthdays at oh joy!

Ever since I started growing the Oh Joy team, it was important for me to celebrate everyone's birthday in a fun way every year. It started off with decorating their desk with a fun theme (often photos of their celeb crushes) and going out to a fun lunch. But in the past couple years, we started a tradition of doing a group activity after my team surprised me with a class at Cirque School! Here's a look back some of the birthday team trips we've taken!

birthdays at oh joy!

Flower Arranging - This was one of my favorites because we learned some fun tips but also came home with these beautiful arrangements

birthdays at oh joy!

Mini Golf - This one was just hilarious!

birthdays at oh joy!

Pottery Class - We've done both making pots from scratch and also ones where you paint pre-made pieces.

birthdays at oh joy!

Cake Making or Decorating - It's always fun to make something you can go home and eat after!

birthdays at oh joy!

Hip Hop Class - We got moving and decked out in 90's style for this one.

birthdays at oh joy!

Nail Salon - It's always a treat to get a mid-week mani!

birthdays at oh joy!

Bowling - It can be hard to find a bowling alley that's open in the middle of the day, but when you do it's pretty fun cause no one is there! ;P

Also, others we've done...

Virtual Reality - We went to a VR place yesterday for Jess' birthday, and it was SOOOO fun! We got in teams to go to these alternate realities and work together to conquer missions. I so want to go back!

Massages - Always a treat to get a massage in the middle of the day!

Movie - This is a fun one if there is a movie out with an actor that the birthday girl really loves.

Cirque School - This is the one that started the activities. It was probably also one of the hardest ones!

It's also VERY fun to all wear some sort of coordinating outfits (the same color, stripes, overalls, 90's gear, etc)

a diy paper table runner fit for fall...

How To Make A Colorful Paper Table Runner / via Oh Joy!

How To Make A Colorful Paper Table Runner / via Oh Joy!

Today we have a really fun and VERY easy way to instantly add bright pops of color to your dining table with a DIY pieced paper table runner that's perfect for fall! It only requires four supplies, all of which you probably already have at home. And since it's so free-flowing, you can make the style and color palate completely your own. It's great for a fall table or even a kid's birthday party. Here's how... 

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How to style a corner gallery wall...

2018_10_02_Corner-Gallery-GIF-blog

If you know me, you know how much I love gallery walls! We've shown you a few different ways to create them over the years, and today, we're showing you how to fill a small corner with a mix of great art. Corner nooks are so cozy and are a great way to utilize every inch of space. Plus, gallery wall instantly adds personality and makes it more inviting. Here's how...

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cute spider donuts for halloween!

Cute DIY Spider Donuts for Halloween... / via Oh Joy!

Meet the cutest spiders you'll ever lay eyes on! They make for a super fun snack for a Halloween party and a tasty treat to make with the kids. Here's how to create them...

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taking oh joy! for alice and ames into fall...

Taking Oh Joy! for Alice + Ames into Fall... / via Oh Joy!

Happy Monday! Last week, I showed you how I'm taking a few of my favorite summer pieces into fall. So today, I'm showing you how you can help extend your little lady's wardrobe to do the same! Our Oh Joy! for Alice & Ames dresses from the summer are almost sold out. But with just a few cozy layers, they're also great for fall. Come check it out...

How to Take Oh Joy! for Alice + Ames dresses from Summer to Fall... / via Oh Joy!

How to Take Oh Joy! for Alice + Ames dresses from Summer to Fall... / via Oh Joy!

To take our Fizzing Bubbles tank dress from summer to fall, we paired it with a VERY cool silver metallic bomber jacket and cute gold metallic booties. To complete the look, we added a knitted beanie on top. This outfit is perfect for early fall days when it's cool enough to keep legs bare but you need a little extra warmth on top.

Fall Outfit: Oh Joy! For Alice & Ames Fizzing Bubbles Dress, James Street Co Port Beanie, Rockets of Awesome Silver Bomber Jacket, and Target booties

How to Take Oh Joy! for Alice + Ames dresses from Summer to Fall... / via Oh Joy!

How to Take Oh Joy! for Alice + Ames dresses from Summer to Fall... / via Oh Joy!

How cozy is this outfit?! We paired our Dancing Daisy dress with a warm knit cardigan and cute polkadot socks to keep little legs warm. I love using tank dresses as the base for layering because there are no sleeves to bunch up underneath and they don't add too much warmth when kids are running around playing.

Fall Outfit: Oh Joy! for Alice & Ames Dancing Daisies dress, Milk+Bots Misha and Puff Cardigan, Target shoes, Tiny Cotton socks, and Wunderkin bow.

How to Take Oh Joy! for Alice + Ames dresses from Summer to Fall... / via Oh Joy!

These dresses won't be around for much longer! So shop them now for this fall or bigger sizes for next summer before they're gone for good...

{Photos by Lily Glass. Flatlay styling by Wilmarose Orlanes, flatlay styling assistance by Jess Hong. Model styling by Lucia Tran.

let's discuss: presents at kids' birthday parties...

Oh Joy! Gifts

I'm about to say something you might not agree with. I don't believe in kids getting presents at birthday parties. Eeeek...do you hate me? It's not that I don't LOVE giving presents (I do). And I will give a present to every birthday my kids are invited to unless they tell me not to. And it's not that I don't think kids should get something special for their birthday (I do). But, I have had a really hard time recently with the excess of presents that a kid gets at a birthday party. If you invite 10-30 kids to your birthday party, your child then gets 10-30 gifts. That's more gifts than they probably get for the holidays.

In my almost 7 years of of being a mom and throwing a birthday party every year for my kids, we have only accepted gifts once. Ruby turned 3 and we invited 5 friends to her party. I was 37 weeks pregnant, and I wanted to her to have a little party just for her before her world was about to be turned upside down by a little sister. So, I let her have 5 presents from 5 friends plus the couple presents we gave her as parents. 

I know not everyone has the means to buy birthday presents. My problem with gifts is for kids who already have plenty. They often have no appreciation for each gift when they get so many at one time. ONE gift or even a couple can feel SO special to them. But when they have 30, they go into hyper toy mode, hyperventilating to open them all back-to-back with no time spent appreciating each one.

Birthday-207-blog

So what's a better solution? I can't say this is for everyone, but for every other party I have thrown my kids we have asked for "no gifts" OR book donations that we donate to children in need. The book donation has been my favorite because it satisfies a guest's desire to bring something, but the gift is going to other children who need the books more than my kids do. Plus, I get my kids involved in taking the books to the donation center and get them excited about seeing how many we collected to give. Last year, we collected over 100 at their joint birthday party because everyone ended up bringing more than one book!

Maybe you have a better way of handling a mass amount of presents or feel more sane about it then I do! I have some friends who hide some of the birthday gifts and bring them out at different times during the year. Or some friends let their kids keep a few and donate the rest. How do you guys handle gifts at birthdays? Do you accept them or not? 

P.S. I asked this question (before I knew my own feelings on it) six years ago as I was approaching Ruby's first birthday. It's interesting to see how my feelings have solidified since then.

{Photos by Casey Brodley}

my summer to fall outfits...

Summer to Fall Outfits... / via Oh Joy!

How is it October already?! Today, I'm showing you how I'm taking a few of my favorite summer pieces and transitioning them into my fall wardrobe! The key is to pair them with warmer (but still colorful) pieces to make an outfit cozy enough for those chilly fall mornings but still lightweight when it starts to heat up in the afternoon...

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