Thursday, November 21, 2013

Paint Your World in Personal Progress-Young Women in Excellence 2013

For our Young Women in Excellence this year, we had a theme of "Paint Your World in Personal Progress."  Our Young Women's President, along with our Activity Specialist, found this blog which most of our night was inspired by. However, in true "us" form, we were inspired to do a bunch of other things too. :) Lots of different details...

(A side note: I didn't create these invites.  Our YW President did and I haven't been able to get a hold of a copy. Good luck. I think she just found a template online.)

The blog we found was inspired for this theme by the talk from Elder David A. Bednar.  Our YW President gave a wonderful talk about this, explaining how we as individuals in Young Women are our own brush strokes but put them all together and they make a wonderful, colorful canvas.  Then we made our own Young Women canvas (more on this below).

"In my office is a beautiful painting of a wheat field. The painting is a vast collection of individual brushstrokes—none of which in isolation is very interesting or impressive. In fact, if you stand close to the canvas, all you can see is a mass of seemingly unrelated and unattractive streaks of yellow and gold and brown paint. However, as you gradually move away from the canvas, all of the individual brushstrokes combine together and produce a magnificent landscape of a wheat field. Many ordinary, individual brushstrokes work together to create a captivating and beautiful painting."

The invitation envelope was made with white crayon and then a brush stroke of paint over the top.
 Prep Time!

Painting the painting brushes. Heehee.

Only a few days before my parents from California, as well as my sister and her husband from Idaho came into town.  While I had rescheduled everything in life while they were there, this was something I couldn't. So they came to help!  Parties are their specialty. (I'm actually not kidding... go to this link to see their catering events business.)  I got a kick out of my dad using tiny glue dots to make mor epaint chip straws. He did a bunch of other bigger things like tables and chairs but would any of my family be surprised that after he did these crafty jobs he had to find an errand to run, even in a foreign country... running to McDonald's! :) Hey I wasn't complaining.  The McDonald's over here are game-changers.

Streamer wall was serious business.

Gotta love my dad!

My mom is seriously talented with decorating.

And the only picture I got of the girls setting up their displays (more pictures below).

Front Display

Our front display with a white background for our slideshow.

Soup cans covered in paint chips with the color of each value.  We use this for our program later.  Fun paint chip garland too.

I'm totally loving the paint splattered table covers.  The artwork can be found here.
Treat Table
As you can tell we based a lot of our decorations around all the paint chips we collected.  Being in Germany I'm sure you can imagine the difficulty in finding the right paint chips.  All the hardware stores had the long thin paint chips, which we utilized all over, but for the square ones we asked a guest coming  over from the states to bring a big stack.  We could only imagine what the airport people thought when seeing a big stack of paint chips going through the screening belt.

We also used the same idea of making/hanging paper pinwheels we used at New Beginnings earlier in the year.  This is a great how to on making pinwheels. SUPER easy!

I think the paintbrush rice krispy treats were my favorite thing of the whole night!
The paint pallet cookies were a take home gift for the girls

We tried to get cupcakes in all the colors of the Young Women Values.
Food Table

More pinwheels! :)
 Our Menu:
-Baked Potato Bar-
(we provided the potatoes, each girl brought toppings to contribute)
-Veggie Cups (see below)-
-Rainbow Fruit Skewers-
(strawberry, mandarin orange, pineapple, kiwi, blueberry, purple grape)
-Decorated Water Bottles-

Veggie cups were a hit!  Added a ton of color too.

I didn't get a picture when all the food had been set out. Can you see the fruit skewers?
Guest Tables
There's not much I can say about these tables that isn't sort of self-explanatory.  We sort of all just brought our home paint supplies and added them to the centerpiece (description below).   

The paint splattered tablecloths were the original plan but it was so wet outside the paint on the other paper didn't dry for two days.  So we improvised and made stripes of streamers down the center of some of the other tables.

We made these centerpieces with an empty paint can covered in paper.  We attached paint chips to tall straws and secured them inside the paint can with sand.  Then just added paint supplies and paint brushes I had bought and painted the handles. If you look closely inside the paint can you can see some tall paintbrushes that added a bit of depth.

Probably another of my favorite details of the night were the silverware holders made with a paint chip on front and a white piece of paper (a little taller on the back) sewed together. Each girl received a mini canvas with the temple outline on it because our theme was "Stand in Holy Places."
Just little details from around the room we brought from home or used extra supplies we had.

How cool is it this paint-by-number painting one of the girls (my Xanthe) painted.

These were some other paint chips we had found and didn't have a use for. So we sewed them together and used them over the girls' displays.
Young Women Displays
Each girl was asked to bring things they had worked on throughout the year with Personal Progress. They wrote little cards they could describe the items.  Then they each received a card relating to the theme with their name on it (can you see it next to the temple picture below?) where they described one of these values and then used this card to speak about it later on.
This is my daughter, Xanthe's display.
This is my other daughter, Xoe's display.  Yes, they're twins.  And yes, the coloring is different.  I got this picture from the YW President.
And overview of one of the corners of displays.  Take note of the cute chalkboard clothespins.  Found at a local store.  I have a more detailed picture below.
These are the girls' tracker cards.  The person we ordered the framed value artwork from (above) sent them to us free!  So nice!  

I didn't post all the pictures I had of the guests. Those went up on our group Facebook page. I only posted those from my close family so those back in the states could see them. :)

Uncle James and Aunt Heather Georgianna visiting from Idaho.

My twins Xoe and Xanthe and their friend Mailee.
Program Cover

Inside Cover

(A side note: I didn't create these programs.  Our YW President did and I haven't been able to get a hold of a copy. Good luck. I think she just found a template online.)

Yes, that's me.  I don't usually post pictures of me but I thought it'd be fun to post this candid for my sisters.  I guess I'm known to feel comfortable talking in front of people so I "got" to conduct. Haha. At least I didn't have to prepare the talk, which I was MORE than happy to let Melanie do. Heehee.

We don't have anyone who plays piano.  So my mom jumped in! :) I love how involved my parents were.  And of course my dad was pretty much the caterer that night.  I didn't do any refills or prep back in the kitchen.  I pretty much just got to sit back and relax.  Everyone should have their events catered! It's kinda nice! :) Thanks mom and dad.

Melanie, Young Women's President, giving her talk I described above.
 At this point in the program, each girl was given a value to describe... i.e, what color it was represented by, the scripture and value description, and how it has been important in their life.  Then they took the paintbrush in their color and created some brushstrokes on a canvas to make our Young Women's painting that is now hanging in our YW room.
My daughter, Xanthe, describing Integrity, Purple.

Again I didn't post pictures of the other girls, but you can see all those that came before who created brushstrokes.

My Xoe describing Virtue, Gold.

Didn't this turn out amazing?!  Their own each individual brush strokes created a beautiful painting.

And here are our Young Women! I'll try to go in order from left to right... Lisa, Ashlenne, Aubrey, Sara, Tatiana, Xoe, Xanthe & Mailee.  We were missing 3 girls.

And add the crazy Young Women Presidency and advisors.

And it wouldn't be true Wiesbaden Military Ward form without a crazy picture too!


  1. Anyway to get the YW presidents talk? We are doing this theme and I would love to see her talk!

  2. I just stumbled onto your blog. I am a new YW president who needs to get her girls excited about personal progress and church again. do you have an outline of what values you did which months or what you did for New beginnings? Really anything would be helpful. I have looked at all your ideas on here and that helps a ton. if you have anything else you are willing to share you can email me at

  3. Hello! I found your post about Young Women in Excellence - Paint your World in Personal Progress and we LOVED your ideas! Would you be willing to email me the files for the program cover, invitation and display cards so we can use them at our Young Women in Excellence coming up in a couple of weeks? We absolutely love your designs! Let me know. Thanks!

    1. Hi Kristi, you didn't leave your email for me to message you, but what i wrote to everyone else is that but I didn’t create these programs. Ive contacted our previous Young Women’s President and will forward them once I hear from her but she has moved away and I don’t know that I would count on it. I think she just found a template online and added some wording to it. I hope this helps!

  4. Hi! I was also looking for a fabulous YWIE idea and couldn't stop looking at your pictures! I love the details!! Like Kristi, I am curious if you wouldn't mind sharing the files for the invitations and program. My email is Thank you for sharing all of these ideas!

  5. I as well just got called as YW president and need to plan YW in Excellence that is in three weeks. Would you be able to email me the files for the program cover, invitation and display cards? My email address is Thank you!!!

  6. I know this was a while ago, but any chance you remember where you got that frame that's holding the value printables? We are doing this for YWE this year!

    1. Hi Sarah, we just used frames from Ikea and glued them together.

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  7. Oh, what a good idea!! Thank you!

  8. I tried to access the blog where you got the idea from but it is private..... do you know who i could contact to access that blog? or do you have a link?