Archive for August, 2009

Back to School Centerpieces

Class has begun and it’s time to get back in the groove of things. I’m sure your children got home from their first day of school and went down for a nap. Teachers generally don’t load students up on homework the first week so it’s a good time to prepare for what is to come.

I have found that when the kids sit down to do the evening’s homework, they tend to lay out every imaginable school material across their work space. A fun way to decorate and organize children’s designated homework area is to be creative with vases, jars, bowls and trays. Place the crayons, colored pencils and/or markers in one of the jars, glue sticks in a bowl, erasers and pencils in another tray and build some sort of organized centerpiece.

You can add other useful art supplies like paint, paintbrushes and oil pastels for future class projects. The simplest way to keep the children’s areas clean is to use disposable plastic table covers or paper tablecloths since they can easily be removed and refreshed. Bottom line is that with an organized supply holder that can be easily spun and re-organized, a mess may stay away longer during the months to come.

Personalized Guest Towels

Monogrammed Guest Hand Towels, or even plain solid colored paper guest towels, are making a comeback. My grandmother is old fashioned in many ways and she always manages to surprise the family with the little mannerisms that are so specific to her. She just had an eye procedure done last week and our family stopped by for a visit this past weekend. In spite of all her health issues, Lola likes to keep her space guest-ready.

She is so cute. Her bathroom is set up with matching towels and bathroom accessories that include lavender paper guest towels for her guests. It totally brought to mind all of the phone calls we’ve received from customers requesting high quality guest hand towels for their bathrooms.

I know having the perfect guest room and “powder room” is essential and a dream come true for many new wives. Ladies, (or involved new husbands) take it a step further with monogrammed guest hand towels sporting the initial of the last name you both share now. ;-)

September 11

The first day of school is only a week away for many students, and the following week marks the 8th anniversary of one of the United States’ most tragic incidents. It is the fateful day on which a horrible act of terrorism took the lives of many individuals—innocent civilians and terrorist subjects who may not have known any better.

The point is that this day especially, requires a moment of silence for all of those brave civilians, firefighters and paramedics that put their lives at risk to save others. It is a wonderful opportunity for elementary, junior high and high school teachers to teach and remind students about the occurrences of that day.

A tip for elementary school teachers: add a twist to a lesson focusing on careers by having students write thank you letters to those individuals who risk their lives for the public safety’s everyday.

Finish off the lesson with treats served on patriotic party supplies.

Housewarming

Wedding season is just about over and upon returning from romantic honeymoons, it is time for the newlyweds to face reality. Although I’m sure all post-brides dread planning anything right after the wedding, a housewarming party is a great way to share your new life with friends and family (the gifts don’t hurt either :) ).

A housewarming is definitely not the time to invite the entire world—invite only close friends and family (people that you would normally want over for a visit/dinner). Provide advice cards or a small notebook where your amigos can leave words of wisdom to the young grasshoppers.

Bottom line, you’re just having friends over to hang out. Set out disposable bowls with yummy treats/snacks and/or appetizers, burn a custom CD with a favorites playlist (or plug the iPod into the speakers) and have plenty of lounging area. Don’t forget to take plenty of pictures for the scrapbooks!

Fateful Cookies

Landmark parties and events are usually planned in honor of an important occasion or milestone in a person(s) life. For example, weddings are the celebration of the union between two people that love each other and wish to spend the rest of their lives (ideally) together. Invited guests are generally close friends and relatives of either the bride or the groom and they are typically happy for the joyful.

A fun way for you happy hosts to share your joy with your guests is to use fortune cookies as party favors—fortune cookies with self-made fortunes that is. First, write out your own creative messages, then steam open each fortune cookie and remove the message strip and insert your own. Let them cool and re-harden.

If you’d like to add a more Asian touch to your party, consider Chopstick Caterwraps as an elegant touch to your table setting.

Mexican Independence

September 16 marks the day Mexico gained independence from Spain in 1810. Every year on the eve of Independence Day, the Mexican president recreates the events of the fateful night by ringing the bells of the National Palace in Mexico City. At dawn the following day the national military parades and ends on Mexico City’s main boulevard.

Today, similar celebrations take place on a smaller scale at churches, parks and/or people’s homes. Most celebrations consist of traditional Mexican meals with drinks and a reference to Hidalgo’s famous independence speech.

If it applies, gather your closest family members and plan a potluck fiesta. Not only does a get together allow bonding times, but it celebrates your heritage. It’s a great time for grandparents to share stories about the past to the grandchildren. Culture is something that can slip through our fingers in one generation and it’s a shame when some cannot point to their homeland on a world globe.

Dress up the house with Fiesta Fun Party Supplies, bring out the maracas and let the shots begin!

Quinceanera Trends

When I was a teenager, quinceaneras and Sweet 16 party decorations included much more reserved color schemes and arrangements. Typically the young girl’s dress consisted of a white gown with one other color such as a pastel blue or a baby pink. In recent years, a trend has emerged in which the main colors include bright shades of magenta, blue, teal, purple and lime green (to name a few).

I wasn’t too convinced by this new trend at first, but the idea has slowly grown on me. Our resident sales coordinator ( :) ) has been assisting a family friend with the plans for her dream Quinceanera, a Latin take on a Sweet 16. Not surprisingly, her choice colors are purple, blue, teal and magenta. Claudia toyed around with the idea of so many colors and quickly cooked up a creative setup using almost only solid colored tableware.

Planning large parties gets expensive fast and saving a couple bucks here and there adds up. Solid colored tableware can be more than just eating utensils—the tableware can double as the main décor.

Slumber Parties

Back in my day (I like to think that is not too long ago), my mother absolutely refused to allow me to attend a slumber party. Well I was allowed to attend, but I had to leave before everyone went to bed. I remember thinking it was the end of the world and vowing never to put my own children or younger siblings through such tragic moments. I suppose now I can look back and appreciate that my mother’s tactic was to be better off safe than sorry in regards to her children’s well-being.

In any case, I’d like to suggest sleepover themed parties for parents of young teenage girls. Pre-teenage/teenage years are the hardest for young girls because of all the body changes, drama, etc. I would definitely stress that a female figure supervise the slumber parties just because it typically makes parents feel more comfortable allowing their children to sleep over.

Make sure and plan plenty of gossip-oriented games, set aside time for hair and makeup makeover, spa supplies and yummy snacks. Get ready to host a slumber-less slumber party. Slumber Party Polka Dots Supplies are the perfect addition to a girl focused night!

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