May 21, 2006

Unique Centerpieces for a Wedding

A couple wishing to really make a statement at their wedding may want to invest in truly unique centerpieces. Typically reception halls do not allow for a great deal of creativity in the decorations as they utilize standard table linens and place settings. However, utilizing unique centerpieces is one way that the bride and groom can make their reception truly memorable.

Incorporating live fish into the centerpieces is one truly unique centerpiece idea for a wedding reception. Simple glass bowls can be used and filled with a few colorful glass marbles along with some water and an exotic and colorful fish. You could even include a small amount of fish food at the table where children will be sitting with careful instructions on how to avoid overfeeding the fish. The children will have a lot of fun and will be less distracted then they would have been with a more traditional centerpiece on the table. This lively and interactive centerpiece idea is sure to be a hit with kids and will even keep adults entertained.

Another unique centerpiece idea is to arrange a collection of board games in the center of each table. This idea is not only unique but if the guests choose to partake in the games; it gives the guests at the table the opportunity and incentive to get to know those seated at their table if they don’t already know them. This is an excellent option for guests who don’t enjoy dancing because they won’t feel so left out of the fun of the wedding.

Cakes or cupcakes arranged on a serving tray and artfully decorated with fresh or artificial flowers also make a lovely and unique centerpiece. These cakes can be used in place of the traditional wedding cake. Using several small cakes as centerpieces is not only an extremely unique centerpiece idea but it also allows the couple the option of having several different types of cakes and fillings. These centerpieces can be collected by the wait staff and sliced in the kitchen for desert or they can be sliced at the individual tables for additional entertainment value.

An attractive journal that matches the theme of the wedding along with several pens can also serve as a unique centerpiece. This centerpiece will not only look lovely on the table but can also be used by the guests to leave messages of congratulations or words of advice for the couple. This way the couple not only had a unique centerpiece but they also have a treasured souvenir of their wedding day in the kind words recorded by their wedding guests.

Mirrors and candles can also be used to create unique centerpieces. An attractive round mirror could be placed in the center of the table with several lit candles resting on the glass. The flickering light of the candles reflecting on the glass makes for a very striking centerpiece especially if the light in the reception hall is kept dim.

Gift boxes of several sizes can also be used to create unique centerpieces. The couple could take gift boxes of three different sizes and wrap each box in a different but complementary piece of wrapping paper. Once the gift boxes are wrapped they can be glued together at odd angles to create very unique centerpieces.

Another unique centerpiece idea is to have puzzles made up from pictures of the couple. The pieces of the puzzle can be left scattered on the table. This unique centerpiece idea encourages the people sitting at the table to work together to try to put the puzzle together. This is especially useful if many of the guests do not know each other because it is a great ice breaker.

An eclectic assortment of Champaign flutes also makes a truly unique centerpiece. You can purchase an assortment of flutes of various shapes and sizes from a thrift store and clean them up to use them as centerpieces. The flutes can be arranged in an attractive but random pattern to create a unique centerpiece for any occasion.

The choice of the centerpieces is one of the only opportunities that a couple has to express their individuality and ensure that their wedding reception really stands out. While some unique centerpiece ideas may require more of an effort than the traditional centerpiece of flowers, a unique centerpiece is more likely to be remembered than a boring one.

Permalink • Print

February 6, 2006

Ideas for Inexpensive Centerpieces

Traditional floral centerpieces can be expensive especially if you plan on having a large number of tables at the wedding reception. While floral arrangements have traditionally been the centerpiece of choice at many weddings there are many more original centerpiece ideas that are also very inexpensive. Depending on the theme and color scheme of the wedding, there are a variety of low cost options available.

A wedding with a light-hearted theme hosted by a fun loving couple might be a suitable opportunity to utilize candy to create festive centerpieces. Clear glass bowls can be filled with colorful candies such as jelly beans or M & Ms to create a lovely and very inexpensive centerpiece that reflects the personalities of the bride and groom. The candy and bowls can probably be purchased for a fraction of the price of floral centerpieces and create a lovely centerpiece that is easily assembled and can be enjoyed by all of the guests.

The bride and groom can also opt for silk floral arrangements if they are intent on having flowers as their centerpiece. Many hobby stores sell a wide variety of attractive artificial flowers that can be arranged by the bride and groom to create attractive centerpieces for the tables. Using fake flowers gives the couple more of an opportunity to express their creativity. The hobby store also likely sells inexpensive vases so the couple may be able to purchase everything they need for the centerpieces in one location. Arranging the flowers in a vase is nice but long stemmed flowers such as calla lilies also look very attractive tied with twine or ribbon and simply laid in the center of the table. The couple could either choose seasonal artificial flowers or artificial flowers that fit the theme of the wedding and arrange them in inexpensive vases or tie them with attractive ribbons to create inexpensive centerpieces for their wedding.

Another inexpensive option for a couple wishing to utilize flowers for their centerpieces is to use potted plants. You can find a multitude of inexpensive potted plants at home improvement stores, greenhouses, and even grocery stores. The couple can choose plants that match the other decorations for the wedding or that will stand out amongst the other decorations. These plants could be repotted into festive pots to create attractive centerpieces for a relatively low cost.

Balloons can be another option for a couple looking to have fun yet inexpensive centerpieces. Balloons are relatively inexpensive and can be easily found in a wide variety of colors and patterns. The couple could choose solid or print patterns that match the colors of the table linens. An extra tip for these centerpieces is to weigh down the balloons with a piece of candy. This will encourage each guest at the table to take home a balloon as a souvenir. With a typical centerpiece only one guest has the opportunity to take home the centerpiece but using balloons makes it possible for each guest to take home a part of the centerpiece.

Another inexpensive wedding table centerpiece is a picture frame in the shape of cube that allows the insertion of a photo into each side of the cube. The couple may choose to include pictures of themselves during their courting or they may wish to include pictures of them with the guests who will be sitting at that table. This is a great opportunity for the couple to express their individuality and share a little bit of themselves with their guests. Artfully arranged photographs create fun centerpieces that are also very inexpensive.

Candles also create a very attractive yet inexpensive centerpiece. The couple may choose to purchase many of the same candle or candles of varying shapes, sizes and colors to arrange on the tables. Candles of the same size, shape and color can be arranged in a uniform pattern to create a beautiful centerpiece. Candles that vary in size, shape and color can be placed at random on the table to create an eclectic appeal.

With a little bit of thought and creativity a couple can find centerpiece options that are affordable, attractive and well suited for the couple. The traditional centerpieces of floral arrangements can be boring and also extremely expensive. Utilizing creativity and ingenuity to create centerpieces that are an accurate representation of the taste of the couple often creates a more appealing centerpiece at a very affordable price.

Permalink • Print

February 17, 2006

Italian Wedding Traditions

Couples who are of Italian descent may choose to incorporate a variety of Italian traditions into their wedding even if they have never even set foot on Italian soil. This is a fun way to honor your ancestors with a nostalgic glimpse into the past. The religious aspects, dances and food at a wedding may all hold traditional values.

The dominant religion in Italy is Roman Catholicism. Therefore a traditional Italian wedding would also be linked to a traditional Catholic wedding and would include a full Mass with the ceremony. Although, not all Italians are also Catholics and if you and your future spouse are not Catholic you can still have a traditional Italian reception to celebrate your marriage. Immediately after the wedding ceremony the couple may release a pair of white doves. These doves symbolize the love and affection that the couple hold for each other.

There are a few other small traditions that apply to the ceremony. One of these traditions is to adorn each entry way that the couple will pass through with elaborately tied ribbons. These ribbons are symbolic of the unity of the couple. It is also customary for the groom to carry a small piece of iron in his pocket during the wedding ceremony. This piece of metal is said to ward off evil spirits and ensure a happy future for the couple. The bride may also rip her veil slightly. This is said to bring good luck to the couple.

The reception that follows the wedding ceremony is where the majority of Italian traditions take place. It is customary for the guests to assemble in the reception room before the bride and groom arrive. You should arrange for your guests to be served alcoholic beverages during this time. The women are traditionally served sweet liquors while the men are served stronger drinks. It is important that these drinks be served before the couple arrives at the reception because tradition holds that the guests offer a toast to the bride and the groom the moment that they arrive at the reception.

There are a few traditional dances that are typically performed at traditional Italian weddings. The Tarantella is one example of these dances. There are several different stories on the origin of this dance but most of the stories revolve around a spider bite. In just about every version of the story, la tarantella was a dance that was performed either to counteract the venom of the spider or as an uncontrollable response to the venom. In modern times this dance is performed as a way of wishing the couple good luck in their future together. La Tarantella is a group, circle dance where the participants dance in a clockwise direction until the music speeds up and then they reverse directions. These tempo changes occur several times and each time the tempos speeds up the group changes direction again. This continues until it is impossible to keep up with the tempo of the music.

No authentic wedding would be complete without a scrumptious feast featuring several courses. A traditional Italian wedding reception begins with an antipasto course that features olives, pickled sweet peppers, mushrooms and cheeses. That is followed by many other courses that include pastas, meats, soups, salads and desserts that are each accompanied by free flowing wine. There are certain foods that have symbolic meanings. For example guests are usually presented with an odd number of almonds. The almonds represent the fact that marriage is often bittersweet. They are presented in odd numbers that have different traditional meanings. For example three almonds wish the couple luck with children while five almonds wish the couple monetary wealth.

Another Italian wedding tradition is to have the couple break a glass or vase at the conclusion of the reception. The Jewish faith has a similar tradition where the groom will break a wine glass at the conclusion of the ceremony but these traditions vary in their intentions and symbolism. Jewish couples break a glass as a symbol of human frailty and the hardship that their ancestors have endured because of their faith. An Italian couple, however, breaks a glass or vase for a completely different reason. According to Italian tradition the number of pieces that the glass breaks into represents the number of happy years that the couple will enjoy together.

It is fun for couples of Italian descent to incorporate traditional elements into their wedding. Even if the couple only has distant relatives that originated from Italy and have never even been to Italy, it is still acceptable to follow these traditions. Couples of other nationalities may also choose an Italian themed wedding just for the enjoyment of trying something different.

Permalink • Print

April 23, 2006

Planning Weddings with Themes

Planning a wedding with a theme can be a fun way to incorporate a specific interest that the couple shares into the wedding. Themes are a fun way for the couple to express themselves and share a little bit of their personalities with the guests. The theme of the wedding can be incorporated into just about every aspect of the wedding. From the couple’s attire, to the decorations, music, favors and even wording of the vows the couple can ensure that every aspect of the wedding reflects their chosen theme. While incorporating a theme into a wedding can be a lot of fun, it’s important to not go too overboard with the theme because the results could be extremely tacky. Below are just a few examples of wedding themes and how they can be incorporated tastefully into your ceremony or reception.

A medieval theme is a popular choice for couples who pine for the romance and tradition of earlier times. You could incorporate this theme by making your reception a costume party and suggesting that your guests dress accordingly. The couple could choose their attire to reflect the theme by wearing outfits that are indicative of the chosen time period. They can do this by either renting costumes or searching far and wide for attire that suits their needs. This theme can also be carried over into the food and entertainment choices. A couple may opt to have a multi-course meal that includes traditional medieval fare. They may also wish to provide entertainment such as musicians and troubadours to perform between each of the courses. Using medieval language during the ceremony and in the vows is another way to incorporate a medieval theme.

A fairly tale wedding is another popular theme for many couples. As many young girls are first exposed to the idea of a wedding in common fairy tales, it is understandable that many brides dream about a fairy tale wedding. This simple theme translates well to wedding preparations and can be incorporated into the wedding in a variety of ways. The couple’s attire is one of the easiest ways to incorporate a fairy tale theme. A form fitting bodice with a tulle skirt is very reminiscent of fairy tale weddings. Furthermore this style of dress is readily available in many bridal shops. In many cases it is even referred to as a “Cinderella Gown”. Simply letting the bridal shop attendants know that you are planning a fairy tale themed wedding will result in them producing a multitude of dresses for you to try on that will be very fitting for the theme. The groom may wish to opt for attire reminiscent of Prince Charming such as a white tuxedo with tails. The theme can be carried forward and included in the transportation that the couple chooses. Arriving in a horse drawn carriage is a very elegant way to include the fairy tale theme. The couple may also choose to perform their first dance together as husband and wife to a traditional ballroom medley. A careful choreographed ballroom dance will look elegant and further convey the fairy tale theme.

An under the sea theme is another common wedding theme. A couple choosing this type of theme may want to consider holding their ceremony and reception on a beach. As always the attire can be incorporated into the theme. If the wedding is held on a beach, the bride may choose to adorn herself in a simple white dress and may opt to be married without shoes. The groom could choose a casual linen suit and may even consider shorts with a lightweight sports jacket. He too could choose to not wear shoes. The decoration possibilities are limitless with this theme. One very popular and appropriate centerpiece idea is to fill glass bowls with sand and seashells. This simple centerpiece is an excellent way to incorporate the theme into the decorations. The couple could also cover the tables in a blue table cloth that is similar to the color of the ocean and layer fishing net over the table. A simple favor idea is to present each guest with a collection of seashell shaped soaps. These are relatively inexpensive and readily available.

While it’s not required for a wedding to have a theme, choosing one can be an excellent way to tie the different elements of the wedding together. The attire, entertainment, decorations, favors and food are all elements that can be used to reflect the theme. Subtle hints at your theme are nice touches but it is possible to go overboard with a theme and the results are often tacky.

Permalink • Print

April 20, 2006

Inexpensive Wedding Gifts

A wedding gift does not have to be expensive to be well received and appreciated by the couple. While the extravagance of some weddings may compel their guests to purchase pricey gifts, it is not necessary to do so. Many people are invited to a number of weddings each year and it’s not feasible to purchase an expensive gift for every wedding you attend. While you may want to splurge on an extravagant gift for a close friend or relative, you are not required to invest a great deal of money in a gift for a casual acquaintance. Even if you are very close with the couple you may be able to create a very inexpensive gift for their wedding. The following are just a few ideas for inexpensive wedding gifts that are sure to delight the couple without breaking your budget.

One inexpensive gift idea is to fill a mixing bowl with a variety of kitchen utensils. This is both an inexpensive and an extremely useful gift. Many couples are starting their life together and will need a few basic utensils and kitchen gadgets to get them started. This gift is thoughtful and useful without being detrimental to your budget.

Another inexpensive gift idea is to create a basket containing elements for a romantic dinner. You could put this basket together by yourself and include items such as dry pasta and sauce as well as a bottle of wine and two wine glasses. You might also want to include a non-perishable desert such as biscotti to complete your meal. You could even include a recipe card with one of your own personally tested recipes. This inexpensive gift idea will be greatly valued by the couple because it essentially giving them the gift of a romantic night alone.

Picture frames can also be an inexpensive wedding gift idea. The couple will likely have a wide variety of photos that they will want to display in their home and providing them with a few simple frames is an inexpensive way to give them a truly useful gift. While many picture frames can be expensive, you could find simple wooden frames in a craft store and paint or decorate to suit the couple’s taste. You could also shop at closeout stores for these items and may find quite a few bargains available. Picture frames are an inexpensive and useful wedding gift idea that is likely to be cherished by the couple.

The couple’s registry could also be another source of inexpensive wedding gift ideas. Many couples will register for an assortment of items that span a large price spectrum. You may find that the couple has included many inexpensive items in their registry that may fall within your budget constraints. Choosing an inexpensive item from the couple’s registry ensures that you are giving them a gift that they will truly like and appreciate because they picked out the item themselves.

If you are a close friend or relative of the couple you may be able to make a very inexpensive wedding gift that will also be unique and greatly cherished by the couple. If you have many pictures of the couple, you might consider arranging these pictures in a unique way in a photo album to give to the couple as a gift. You could also use the photos to create a scrapbook or even a video presentation set to music that features the couple. These gifts will be greatly appreciated by the couple and can be created for a relatively small cost.

Candles are another inexpensive wedding gift. Newlyweds often incorporate candles in their decorating and also use candles to create ambiance during dinner or on other occasions. Just after they are married is the time when couples are most likely to enjoy candlelight dinners frequently and for no specific occasion so a wedding gift of candles is bound to be used often. Candles come in a great variety of colors, sizes and scents so it should be easy to find an assortment of candles that will be appreciated by the couple.

A wedding gift does not have to be expensive to be useful and appreciated by the couple. Many wedding guests spend a great deal of money on fancy china or glassware that is only used on special occasions while inexpensive gifts such as candles and kitchen utensils are used by the couple on a daily basis.

Permalink • Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
10 Great “No Reason” Gifts for Under $10 | Your Relations

January 10, 2006

10 Great “No Reason” Gifts for Under $10

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s the thought that counts,” and this is especially true when giving a gift in a relationship. Simple gifts given to a loved one, don’t have to be for any reason other than to let them know that you care and are thinking of them and these gifts don’t have to be expensive. With a little creativeness you can give your loved one a gift that shows how much you love them and value your relationship for under $10.

The key to giving inexpensive gifts is to make sure they are something that the person you are giving the gift to will really cherish and appreciate. To give a really great inexpensive gift you have to think beyond the generic gifts of perfumed soaps and lotions for women and ties and socks for men. In giving inexpensive gifts try to personalize the gift to reflect the personality or hobbies of the recipient of the gift.

One inexpensive gift idea for a person who enjoys cooking is a specialty cookbook such as a dessert or ethnic cookbook. Interesting cook books can often be found in the discount section of book stores for less than $10. For an additional twist try making one of the dishes in the cookbook yourself and serving it when you present the gift to your loved one. Your loved one will appreciate the gesture and enjoy sharing the dish with you and will remember that moment fondly when using the cookbook.

For a sentimental soul, give a gift of personal photos arranged in a photo album in a unique way. Photo albums can be found for just a few dollars in convenience stores and you can use existing photos to fill the pages. The key to this gift is to present the photos in an original way. Try creating a photo album with a theme such as one that documents your relationship from courtship to your current stage or one that highlights the trips you have taken together.

The runner in your life will appreciate an inexpensive stopwatch or pedometer. While these gadgets can get pricey you can still find models that perform the basic functions for under $10. This gift lets you know that you are thinking of them and that you understand their hobby. They will appreciate your interest in their activities. You can even include a note letting them know you would love to join them for a run one day.

Another inexpensive gift idea is a basket filled with homemade cookies, breads or other goodies. If you know that your sweetheart has a sweet tooth, invest a few hours of your time to bake up some tasty treats for your loved one just to let them know you are thinking of them. They will not only enjoy the treat you have prepared but will also appreciate the effort that went into the gift. If the person you are baking the goodies for is on a special diet, be sure to incorporate their dietary needs into your recipe.

A homemade coupon book is always a welcomed gift and can certainly be made for under $10. Create coupons on your computer or by hand for services that you know your loved one will enjoy and include a small gift to go with the theme of the coupon book. For example the man in a relationship where the couple has children could give the woman a bottle of nail polish along with coupons offering his services as a babysitter while she goes out for a manicure with a friend. She will appreciate that you are sending her out to be pampered while you get a chance to enjoy some time with the kids. In giving this gift try to think of something your partner will appreciate but won’t splurge on for themselves.

Search the discount DVD bins for ones that are less than $10. Believe it or not, they are available and you just might find one that would make a great gift for someone you love. Inexpensive DVDs are often less mainstream and you could use that originality to try something new. If your partner is always trying to get you to go dancing but you keep refusing, you might find an instructional video on flamenco dancing or square dancing. Invite your loved one over and try following the video together.

Flowers don’t have to cost a fortune. You may spend hundreds on red roses for Valentine’s Day but for everyday occasions or for no reason at all, you could stop by your local supermarket and pick up a bouquet of colorful wild flowers from their floral department. Ditch the cellophane wrapper that the flowers come in and arrange them in a vase yourself or tie them with a pretty ribbon. Pre-arranged bouquets such as these are often available for under $10.

A CD filled with songs that your loved one enjoys or that have special meaning for you as a couple makes a wonderful and inexpensive gift. For under $10 you could easily use your computer to assemble a CD of meaningful songs. You could even create a CD cover that conveys the message you want to send with the CD.

Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy a trip to a local National Park to hike, observe wildlife and enjoy the outdoors so surprise your partner with a day trip to the park. Entry fees for many National Parks are under $10 and you and your loved one will have the opportunity to spend quality time together. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day enjoying nature and each others company.

If your loved one enjoys working out, a jump rope is a gift that you can give them for less than $10. This inexpensive gift will not only remind them of their childhood but also demonstrate that you understand them and realize that fitness is important in their life. An even better idea is to buy one for yourself as well and challenge your loved one to a friendly competition.

Gift giving doesn’t have to be expensive and doesn’t have to be for a specific occasion. Surprise your partner with well thought out gifts that reflect their interests. With a little creativity you can give your loved one a gift that shows how well you know them and they are in your thoughts every day and you don’t have to spend more than $10 to do so.

Permalink • Print

Related Entries

Related Searches

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
floral centerpieces | Your Relations

February 6, 2006

Ideas for Inexpensive Centerpieces

Traditional floral centerpieces can be expensive especially if you plan on having a large number of tables at the wedding reception. While floral arrangements have traditionally been the centerpiece of choice at many weddings there are many more original centerpiece ideas that are also very inexpensive. Depending on the theme and color scheme of the wedding, there are a variety of low cost options available.

A wedding with a light-hearted theme hosted by a fun loving couple might be a suitable opportunity to utilize candy to create festive centerpieces. Clear glass bowls can be filled with colorful candies such as jelly beans or M & Ms to create a lovely and very inexpensive centerpiece that reflects the personalities of the bride and groom. The candy and bowls can probably be purchased for a fraction of the price of floral centerpieces and create a lovely centerpiece that is easily assembled and can be enjoyed by all of the guests.

The bride and groom can also opt for silk floral arrangements if they are intent on having flowers as their centerpiece. Many hobby stores sell a wide variety of attractive artificial flowers that can be arranged by the bride and groom to create attractive centerpieces for the tables. Using fake flowers gives the couple more of an opportunity to express their creativity. The hobby store also likely sells inexpensive vases so the couple may be able to purchase everything they need for the centerpieces in one location. Arranging the flowers in a vase is nice but long stemmed flowers such as calla lilies also look very attractive tied with twine or ribbon and simply laid in the center of the table. The couple could either choose seasonal artificial flowers or artificial flowers that fit the theme of the wedding and arrange them in inexpensive vases or tie them with attractive ribbons to create inexpensive centerpieces for their wedding.

Another inexpensive option for a couple wishing to utilize flowers for their centerpieces is to use potted plants. You can find a multitude of inexpensive potted plants at home improvement stores, greenhouses, and even grocery stores. The couple can choose plants that match the other decorations for the wedding or that will stand out amongst the other decorations. These plants could be repotted into festive pots to create attractive centerpieces for a relatively low cost.

Balloons can be another option for a couple looking to have fun yet inexpensive centerpieces. Balloons are relatively inexpensive and can be easily found in a wide variety of colors and patterns. The couple could choose solid or print patterns that match the colors of the table linens. An extra tip for these centerpieces is to weigh down the balloons with a piece of candy. This will encourage each guest at the table to take home a balloon as a souvenir. With a typical centerpiece only one guest has the opportunity to take home the centerpiece but using balloons makes it possible for each guest to take home a part of the centerpiece.

Another inexpensive wedding table centerpiece is a picture frame in the shape of cube that allows the insertion of a photo into each side of the cube. The couple may choose to include pictures of themselves during their courting or they may wish to include pictures of them with the guests who will be sitting at that table. This is a great opportunity for the couple to express their individuality and share a little bit of themselves with their guests. Artfully arranged photographs create fun centerpieces that are also very inexpensive.

Candles also create a very attractive yet inexpensive centerpiece. The couple may choose to purchase many of the same candle or candles of varying shapes, sizes and colors to arrange on the tables. Candles of the same size, shape and color can be arranged in a uniform pattern to create a beautiful centerpiece. Candles that vary in size, shape and color can be placed at random on the table to create an eclectic appeal.

With a little bit of thought and creativity a couple can find centerpiece options that are affordable, attractive and well suited for the couple. The traditional centerpieces of floral arrangements can be boring and also extremely expensive. Utilizing creativity and ingenuity to create centerpieces that are an accurate representation of the taste of the couple often creates a more appealing centerpiece at a very affordable price.

Permalink • Print

May 21, 2006

Unique Centerpieces for a Wedding

A couple wishing to really make a statement at their wedding may want to invest in truly unique centerpieces. Typically reception halls do not allow for a great deal of creativity in the decorations as they utilize standard table linens and place settings. However, utilizing unique centerpieces is one way that the bride and groom can make their reception truly memorable.

Incorporating live fish into the centerpieces is one truly unique centerpiece idea for a wedding reception. Simple glass bowls can be used and filled with a few colorful glass marbles along with some water and an exotic and colorful fish. You could even include a small amount of fish food at the table where children will be sitting with careful instructions on how to avoid overfeeding the fish. The children will have a lot of fun and will be less distracted then they would have been with a more traditional centerpiece on the table. This lively and interactive centerpiece idea is sure to be a hit with kids and will even keep adults entertained.

Another unique centerpiece idea is to arrange a collection of board games in the center of each table. This idea is not only unique but if the guests choose to partake in the games; it gives the guests at the table the opportunity and incentive to get to know those seated at their table if they don’t already know them. This is an excellent option for guests who don’t enjoy dancing because they won’t feel so left out of the fun of the wedding.

Cakes or cupcakes arranged on a serving tray and artfully decorated with fresh or artificial flowers also make a lovely and unique centerpiece. These cakes can be used in place of the traditional wedding cake. Using several small cakes as centerpieces is not only an extremely unique centerpiece idea but it also allows the couple the option of having several different types of cakes and fillings. These centerpieces can be collected by the wait staff and sliced in the kitchen for desert or they can be sliced at the individual tables for additional entertainment value.

An attractive journal that matches the theme of the wedding along with several pens can also serve as a unique centerpiece. This centerpiece will not only look lovely on the table but can also be used by the guests to leave messages of congratulations or words of advice for the couple. This way the couple not only had a unique centerpiece but they also have a treasured souvenir of their wedding day in the kind words recorded by their wedding guests.

Mirrors and candles can also be used to create unique centerpieces. An attractive round mirror could be placed in the center of the table with several lit candles resting on the glass. The flickering light of the candles reflecting on the glass makes for a very striking centerpiece especially if the light in the reception hall is kept dim.

Gift boxes of several sizes can also be used to create unique centerpieces. The couple could take gift boxes of three different sizes and wrap each box in a different but complementary piece of wrapping paper. Once the gift boxes are wrapped they can be glued together at odd angles to create very unique centerpieces.

Another unique centerpiece idea is to have puzzles made up from pictures of the couple. The pieces of the puzzle can be left scattered on the table. This unique centerpiece idea encourages the people sitting at the table to work together to try to put the puzzle together. This is especially useful if many of the guests do not know each other because it is a great ice breaker.

An eclectic assortment of Champaign flutes also makes a truly unique centerpiece. You can purchase an assortment of flutes of various shapes and sizes from a thrift store and clean them up to use them as centerpieces. The flutes can be arranged in an attractive but random pattern to create a unique centerpiece for any occasion.

The choice of the centerpieces is one of the only opportunities that a couple has to express their individuality and ensure that their wedding reception really stands out. While some unique centerpiece ideas may require more of an effort than the traditional centerpiece of flowers, a unique centerpiece is more likely to be remembered than a boring one.

Permalink • Print

May 18, 2006

10 Tips for Setting a Budget and Sticking to It

Budget concerns can be one of the most prominent sources of disagreement for a couple in the process of planning their wedding. The couple may have different ideas about what type of wedding they want and also about what they can afford. It is important for the couple to discuss financial constraints before the wedding planning goes too far.

The first tip for setting a budget and sticking to it is to have a conversation regarding finances well before the wedding planning starts in earnest. It is important that everyone involved in the decision making process of the wedding understand just how much money is available to be spent on the wedding.

Another tip for setting a budget and sticking to it is to start saving early for your wedding. Putting aside a portion of each paycheck for awhile can add up to a sizable savings that can be used for your wedding. This advanced planning and saving will allow you to maximize the budget that is available to you for your wedding planning.

Once the budget has been established, set it aside for a few days and then review it again. This time away from the budget gives those involved the chance to let the information settle in and the review of the budget after this waiting period gives the participants the opportunity to verify that they understand and agree to the budget. This is important because if someone does not agree with the budget, they may be likely to overspend in one area leaving the budget in jeopardy.

After an overall budget is established it is important to divide the total amount appropriately to establish budgets for items such as the venue, food and drink, the bride’s attire, the groom’s attire, transportation, entertainment, photography, favors, centerpieces, gifts for the wedding party and even gifts for each other. It is also important to partition a small amount of money for incidentals to account for small unexpected expenses.

In establishing a budget it is also important to be clear about who will be paying for what items. For example, if the groom’s family offers to pay for the centerpieces and you choose to let them, this will allow you to divert your previously designated centerpiece budget to other aspects of the wedding. The key to sticking to your wedding budget is to be aware of who has agreed to pay for what.

It is important that budgets for each individual aspect of the wedding be established to enable you to follow this next tip. This tip advises the couple to be mindful of their budgets for each individual component of the wedding before negotiating contracts for services. If you know that you have allotted $250 for entertainment you would be wise to seek out a DJ that is offering his services for approximately that amount and then negotiate your contract to ensure that you remain under budge.

Doing as many things as you can on your own is another way to ensure that you are sticking to your budget. Crafts and homemade invitations can greatly reduce the cost of your wedding. For example making your own favors or centerpieces can greatly reduce your costs and free up additional budget for other areas of the wedding.

Another tip for sticking to your wedding budget is to not view the budget as restrictive. If instead of thinking about the things that you can’t afford, you focus on how you can make your wedding and reception truly unique you will be inspired to create a fabulous and memorable wedding despite your budget constraints.

Still another tip for sticking to your wedding budget is to shop around and comparison shop for services. A limousine company may come highly recommended but if they are not in your price range, don’t be afraid to let them know why you are going to have to choose another company and you may be surprised at how soon they are willing to give you a different offer.

A final tip for creating and sticking to a budget is to realize that there are bound to be snags along the way. As long as you remain cognizant of your spending and realize the ramifications of your actions you are likely to realize that if you go over budget in one area, you will need to modify other areas by reducing their total budget.

A wedding budget can be a serious cause of emotional strain on a couple. It is important for them to discuss their finances and establish a budget for their wedding plans. Doing this early on in the wedding planning process can help the couple to avoid conflict during the planning phase of the wedding.

Permalink • Print

February 13, 2006

Choosing the Perfect Wedding Location

The location of the wedding is critical because it can play a key role in setting the mood for the wedding. There are a number or ways to choose a potential location for your wedding including choosing a location where you have previously attended a wedding, shopping around and visiting multiple venues and seeking suggestions from trusted friends or relatives. Once you have narrowed your choices down to a few options it is important to consider a few additional factors such as price, seating capacities and services available.

There may be a wide variety of suitable wedding venues available but you could greatly reduce the number of venues that you are required to visit by choosing only locations that come highly recommended from a trusted source. This will save you from having to visit every venue in town to determine whether or not it is an acceptable location. Seeking input from others can greatly reduce the amount of venues that you need to visit.

The location of your wedding can play a key role in the style of your wedding. Some couples opt for a ceremony at a church followed by a reception at a catering hall while others may wish to hold the ceremony outdoors but have a reception at an indoor location. Still others choose to hold both the ceremony and the reception at a catering hall. Whichever option you choose for your wedding it is important to ensure that the location you choose has all of the elements that you were seeking in a wedding location such as ambiance, seating capacity, a dance floor or anything else that you require.

Price is one of the most important considerations in choosing the perfect wedding location. There may be many locations where you wish to hold your wedding but if they are out of your price range you may have to eliminate them from your list if you are not able to successfully renegotiate the asking price. Whether you are being charged a price per guest or a flat fee for a set duration of time, if you simply cannot afford the location it is not right for your wedding. Fortunately most cities have a wide variety of options available so it is extremely likely that you will find a suitable venue that is within your price range.

Maximum occupancy is another important consideration when choosing the perfect wedding location. While you may really like the intimacy that a quaint location that seats only 50 guests affords, this is not a feasible option for a couple who has invited over 300 guests to their wedding. Likewise a large reception space that is capable of seating 500 people is not a good option for a couple who is planning a small wedding with only a handful of close friends and family members. It is important to choose a wedding location that is capable of accommodating the number of guests that you have invited without being large enough to accommodate almost twice as many people that you have invited. Choosing a venue that is either too small or too big is not feasible because a venue that is too small will be cramped and may not fit all of your guests while a venue that is too big will be a waste of money because large spaces often include a minimum number of guest required and you may wind up paying for more guest than you actually have in attendance.

The services that are offered may also factor into choosing a wedding location. Many catering halls may also have staff available to provide entertainment or floral designs. If you find a facility that is capable of either performing additional services or recommending service providers you might want to consider choosing this venue to eliminate the amount of services that you have to account for. Consolidating in any way possible can greatly reduce the effort that is required of you to complete you wedding planning.

Choosing the perfect location for your wedding may seem like an impossible task especially if you live in an area that has a number of options. Setting strict criteria for evaluating locations can save you a lot of time and effort. Only visiting venues that meet these criteria will greatly reduce the number of locations that you need to visit.

Permalink • Print

January 10, 2006

10 Great “No Reason” Gifts for Under $10

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s the thought that counts,” and this is especially true when giving a gift in a relationship. Simple gifts given to a loved one, don’t have to be for any reason other than to let them know that you care and are thinking of them and these gifts don’t have to be expensive. With a little creativeness you can give your loved one a gift that shows how much you love them and value your relationship for under $10.

The key to giving inexpensive gifts is to make sure they are something that the person you are giving the gift to will really cherish and appreciate. To give a really great inexpensive gift you have to think beyond the generic gifts of perfumed soaps and lotions for women and ties and socks for men. In giving inexpensive gifts try to personalize the gift to reflect the personality or hobbies of the recipient of the gift.

One inexpensive gift idea for a person who enjoys cooking is a specialty cookbook such as a dessert or ethnic cookbook. Interesting cook books can often be found in the discount section of book stores for less than $10. For an additional twist try making one of the dishes in the cookbook yourself and serving it when you present the gift to your loved one. Your loved one will appreciate the gesture and enjoy sharing the dish with you and will remember that moment fondly when using the cookbook.

For a sentimental soul, give a gift of personal photos arranged in a photo album in a unique way. Photo albums can be found for just a few dollars in convenience stores and you can use existing photos to fill the pages. The key to this gift is to present the photos in an original way. Try creating a photo album with a theme such as one that documents your relationship from courtship to your current stage or one that highlights the trips you have taken together.

The runner in your life will appreciate an inexpensive stopwatch or pedometer. While these gadgets can get pricey you can still find models that perform the basic functions for under $10. This gift lets you know that you are thinking of them and that you understand their hobby. They will appreciate your interest in their activities. You can even include a note letting them know you would love to join them for a run one day.

Another inexpensive gift idea is a basket filled with homemade cookies, breads or other goodies. If you know that your sweetheart has a sweet tooth, invest a few hours of your time to bake up some tasty treats for your loved one just to let them know you are thinking of them. They will not only enjoy the treat you have prepared but will also appreciate the effort that went into the gift. If the person you are baking the goodies for is on a special diet, be sure to incorporate their dietary needs into your recipe.

A homemade coupon book is always a welcomed gift and can certainly be made for under $10. Create coupons on your computer or by hand for services that you know your loved one will enjoy and include a small gift to go with the theme of the coupon book. For example the man in a relationship where the couple has children could give the woman a bottle of nail polish along with coupons offering his services as a babysitter while she goes out for a manicure with a friend. She will appreciate that you are sending her out to be pampered while you get a chance to enjoy some time with the kids. In giving this gift try to think of something your partner will appreciate but won’t splurge on for themselves.

Search the discount DVD bins for ones that are less than $10. Believe it or not, they are available and you just might find one that would make a great gift for someone you love. Inexpensive DVDs are often less mainstream and you could use that originality to try something new. If your partner is always trying to get you to go dancing but you keep refusing, you might find an instructional video on flamenco dancing or square dancing. Invite your loved one over and try following the video together.

Flowers don’t have to cost a fortune. You may spend hundreds on red roses for Valentine’s Day but for everyday occasions or for no reason at all, you could stop by your local supermarket and pick up a bouquet of colorful wild flowers from their floral department. Ditch the cellophane wrapper that the flowers come in and arrange them in a vase yourself or tie them with a pretty ribbon. Pre-arranged bouquets such as these are often available for under $10.

A CD filled with songs that your loved one enjoys or that have special meaning for you as a couple makes a wonderful and inexpensive gift. For under $10 you could easily use your computer to assemble a CD of meaningful songs. You could even create a CD cover that conveys the message you want to send with the CD.

Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy a trip to a local National Park to hike, observe wildlife and enjoy the outdoors so surprise your partner with a day trip to the park. Entry fees for many National Parks are under $10 and you and your loved one will have the opportunity to spend quality time together. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day enjoying nature and each others company.

If your loved one enjoys working out, a jump rope is a gift that you can give them for less than $10. This inexpensive gift will not only remind them of their childhood but also demonstrate that you understand them and realize that fitness is important in their life. An even better idea is to buy one for yourself as well and challenge your loved one to a friendly competition.

Gift giving doesn’t have to be expensive and doesn’t have to be for a specific occasion. Surprise your partner with well thought out gifts that reflect their interests. With a little creativity you can give your loved one a gift that shows how well you know them and they are in your thoughts every day and you don’t have to spend more than $10 to do so.

Permalink • Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
candy | Your Relations

February 6, 2006

Ideas for Inexpensive Centerpieces

Traditional floral centerpieces can be expensive especially if you plan on having a large number of tables at the wedding reception. While floral arrangements have traditionally been the centerpiece of choice at many weddings there are many more original centerpiece ideas that are also very inexpensive. Depending on the theme and color scheme of the wedding, there are a variety of low cost options available.

A wedding with a light-hearted theme hosted by a fun loving couple might be a suitable opportunity to utilize candy to create festive centerpieces. Clear glass bowls can be filled with colorful candies such as jelly beans or M & Ms to create a lovely and very inexpensive centerpiece that reflects the personalities of the bride and groom. The candy and bowls can probably be purchased for a fraction of the price of floral centerpieces and create a lovely centerpiece that is easily assembled and can be enjoyed by all of the guests.

The bride and groom can also opt for silk floral arrangements if they are intent on having flowers as their centerpiece. Many hobby stores sell a wide variety of attractive artificial flowers that can be arranged by the bride and groom to create attractive centerpieces for the tables. Using fake flowers gives the couple more of an opportunity to express their creativity. The hobby store also likely sells inexpensive vases so the couple may be able to purchase everything they need for the centerpieces in one location. Arranging the flowers in a vase is nice but long stemmed flowers such as calla lilies also look very attractive tied with twine or ribbon and simply laid in the center of the table. The couple could either choose seasonal artificial flowers or artificial flowers that fit the theme of the wedding and arrange them in inexpensive vases or tie them with attractive ribbons to create inexpensive centerpieces for their wedding.

Another inexpensive option for a couple wishing to utilize flowers for their centerpieces is to use potted plants. You can find a multitude of inexpensive potted plants at home improvement stores, greenhouses, and even grocery stores. The couple can choose plants that match the other decorations for the wedding or that will stand out amongst the other decorations. These plants could be repotted into festive pots to create attractive centerpieces for a relatively low cost.

Balloons can be another option for a couple looking to have fun yet inexpensive centerpieces. Balloons are relatively inexpensive and can be easily found in a wide variety of colors and patterns. The couple could choose solid or print patterns that match the colors of the table linens. An extra tip for these centerpieces is to weigh down the balloons with a piece of candy. This will encourage each guest at the table to take home a balloon as a souvenir. With a typical centerpiece only one guest has the opportunity to take home the centerpiece but using balloons makes it possible for each guest to take home a part of the centerpiece.

Another inexpensive wedding table centerpiece is a picture frame in the shape of cube that allows the insertion of a photo into each side of the cube. The couple may choose to include pictures of themselves during their courting or they may wish to include pictures of them with the guests who will be sitting at that table. This is a great opportunity for the couple to express their individuality and share a little bit of themselves with their guests. Artfully arranged photographs create fun centerpieces that are also very inexpensive.

Candles also create a very attractive yet inexpensive centerpiece. The couple may choose to purchase many of the same candle or candles of varying shapes, sizes and colors to arrange on the tables. Candles of the same size, shape and color can be arranged in a uniform pattern to create a beautiful centerpiece. Candles that vary in size, shape and color can be placed at random on the table to create an eclectic appeal.

With a little bit of thought and creativity a couple can find centerpiece options that are affordable, attractive and well suited for the couple. The traditional centerpieces of floral arrangements can be boring and also extremely expensive. Utilizing creativity and ingenuity to create centerpieces that are an accurate representation of the taste of the couple often creates a more appealing centerpiece at a very affordable price.

Permalink • Print

September 26, 2006

A Creative Romantic Lives in You

Why is it that so many people believe that they don’t have time or take the initiative to be romantic? Maybe most people don’t believe that they are creative enough to be romantic. Everyone is creative! The definition of being creative is having the ability or power to create. The word create offers a much broader definition than most people accept when it comes to the process of being able to come up with something original or simply well thought out.

Gifts that are considered to be traditionally romantic like candy and flowers are wonderful, but sometimes you need something that goes one step further. If your spouse enjoys flowers, you don’t have to settle for roses because they can sometimes become unexciting after a while! Present him or her with something completely original such as a daisy or another flower where petals can be counted. Ask him or her to play the childhood game of ‘they love me, they love me not’ and watch them pluck the petals as they go. However, don’t allow for the possibility of him or her arriving at the ‘they love me not’. Count the petals before you present the flower to your spouse and trim it so that there is an odd number of petals for the right outcome!

Arts and crafts used to be a fun break from the monotony of the school day, but believe it or not, it will come in handy when it comes to creative romantic gestures. Instead of promising that you will love him or her forever, show them. Take a piece of paper, ribbon or other material you choose and write “I love you” on both sides from end to end. Twist the paper 180 degrees and connect both ends of the paper until you have mad what looks like the figure eight. Tape or glue to ends together. You can present your love with a symbol that shows them your love for them is an endless love.

Creativity comes in many different forms! Being creative can mean creating an atmosphere. If you want to plan the ultimate romantic evening but funds are low or you simply don’t want to have to leave the house, shut down the electricity and imitate a power outage (it’s up to you whether or not you tell him or her!). You won’t have any distractions or heat, so it is up to both of you to keep the other warm and entertain each other.

Maybe romance is on your mind, but he or she is going out of town. Did you know that people on airplanes are typically hopeless romantics? Any flight attendant would be more than happy to make sure that your spouse receives a special present after the flight has left the ground. Simply approach a crewmember after he or she boards the plane and they are usually more than happy to oblige a hopeless romantic like you! (You might want to make sure that the gift is unwrapped or keep it to a single rose due to heightened security.)

Creativity doesn’t have to come in the form of gifts every single time. Gestures like getting up and dancing with your spouse when a special song comes on the radio is quite creative and incredibly romantic! Whenever the mood strikes you, allow your creative juices to flow!

Permalink • Print

February 27, 2006

Creative Wedding Gifts

Many new couples receive more picture frames, candy dishes and candle stick holders than they can possibly use. While these are all lovely gifts, they are also very common and not likely to stand out very much to the new couple. On the other hand a gift that is truly creative is likely to be well appreciated by the bride and groom.

A collection of board games can be a very creative and useful wedding gift. Many couples enjoy entertaining and having a number of their friends over for dinner, drinks and conversation. While this in itself is a great deal of fun, introducing board games can be a competitive way to spice up the evening and bring laughter into the gathering. Everyone enjoys playing their old favorite board games and many people also enjoy experimenting with new games. Giving the couple a collection of board games as a wedding gift can lead to many nights of fun for the couple and their friends.

Theme baskets also make wonderful creative gift ideas. In creating a theme basket you are only limited by your imagination in what to include in your basket. You could create baskets that are cooking related, sports related or travel related. The key to creating a theme basket that is not only creative but also appropriate for the couple is to keep in mind their likes and dislikes. The couple that eats out every night of the week may not enjoy cooking and would therefore not appreciate a basket full for recipes and kitchen utensils, however, the couple with season tickets to a particular sport may enjoy a basket filled with DVDs from a championship series as well as memorabilia from their favorite sports team.

A couple is likely to receive countless picture frames on their wedding but you can put a twist on the idea of giving a picture frame to turn it into a more creative wedding gift. One way to do this is to purchase a large frame and insert an inexpensive print that the couple will appreciate or a blown up picture of the two of them. This creative gift stands out from the traditional picture frame because it includes a photo and is ready for immediate display. Many picture frames remain in the box for years while the couple tries to decide on the perfect picture to display in the frame but giving the couple a framed portrait or print eliminates this dilemma.

Another creative gift for a wedding is a personalized calendar. Many office supply stores will create a calendar for you if you provide them with the twelve pictures that you would like to include in the calendar. This creative gift idea can be created by an office supply store for a relatively low price or the wedding guest may opt to create the calendar themselves on their own computers. It is very simple and many word processing programs offer calendar templates. This creative gift idea is sure to be appreciated by the new couple for its practicality and originality.

There are many companies that will create a print that has the appeal of a watercolor painting from a photograph. Giving a gift certificate for this service can be a very creative gift idea. You may choose to give the gift certificate with instructions for the couple to redeem the gift certificate to have a water color likeness created from one of their favorite wedding pictures. If you have a copy of a picture that is flattering to both the bride and the groom you may want to arrange for this service using the picture you have in lieu of giving the couple the gift certificate. The one caveat to giving this gift is to allow enough time for the print to be created and returned to you so that you don’t have to present your gift to the bride and groom after their wedding date. If you plan to attend the wedding in person, it is appropriate to have the gift for the bride and groom either at the wedding or else scheduled to arrive via shipping prior to the wedding date.

A couple that already has children may appreciate a gift certificate stating that you would be willing to baby-sit for the couple’s children once a month for the first year of their marriage. This creative gift is extremely useful for the couple because it allows them one night a month to go out and enjoy themselves.

Creative wedding gift ideas don’t have to be expensive but they are often widely appreciated. A creative wedding gift is likely to stand out from the more traditional gifts. Creative gifts are also likely to be greatly appreciated by the new couple.

Permalink • Print

August 13, 2006

10 Incredibly Nice Things to Do For Her

You can demonstrate your love for the special woman in your life in a number of small ways. Flowers and candy on special occasions are always nice but you can also surprise a woman by offering smaller gestures on a daily basis. She will appreciate your thoughtfulness and understand that you are trying to show her how much she means to you.

One incredibly nice thing to do for her is simply to ask her how her day was and listen intently to her answer. Women enjoy talking about their personal issues and expressing an interest in her career or other areas of interest will be greatly appreciated. Listening carefully to her will let her know that you are interested in her thoughts and care about her feelings.

Cooking for a woman is another incredibly nice thing that you can do for her. Most women are the primary cooks in the relationship and giving her a night off from her usual kitchen duties is always a welcomed gesture. Don’t worry if you don’t know how to cook, it’s really not that hard. There are many cook books and Internet sites that offer a wide variety or recipes. Pick one that sounds interesting and follow the instructions carefully.

Remembering and celebrating a small occasion is another nice gesture that women appreciate. It’s always nice to celebrate on big occasions but if you remember the anniversary of another special day the woman in your life will be completely caught by surprise. For example celebrate the anniversary of the day you brought home your new puppy with a trip to a dog park.

Another incredibly nice thing to do for a woman is to give her compliments when they are unexpected. Women expect compliments when they put a lot of effort into their appearance but letting her know you think she is beautiful while she’s running errands, demonstrates that you see her inner beauty shining through at all times. Compliments don’t always have to be about physical characteristics either. You could compliment her on her career accomplishments and let her know that you appreciate how hard she works.

Handing over the remote control is another incredibly nice thing you can do for a woman. You may not want to sit through another episode of a home decorating show but allowing the woman in your life to indulge in this without complaining about her choice will show her that you are not belittling her interests.

If you want to do something really nice for the special woman in your life, get to know her family and friends. Woman value their relationships and she will be pleased about the fact that you take an interest in and get to know the other special people in her life. Caring about those that she loves shows her that you love her.

Still another incredibly nice thing to do for a woman is to write her a love letter and send it in the mail. Sure she sees you every day and you may even exchange emails and phone calls on a daily basis but a love letter is something that she can save in a special place and will cherish. Expressing your love in a letter is a special way to tell a woman that you care deeply about her.

Planning a trip for your woman is another incredibly nice thing you can do for her. A vacation is always nice but when you take the initiative and plan out all the details ahead of time, it shows that you want her to have the enjoyable experience of the trip but that you are willing to take care of all the planning. Women tend to take the lead in making travel arrangements and verifying the logistics of trips but if you take care of that ahead of time, the woman is free to just focus on packing for the trip.

Another incredibly nice thing to do for a woman is to surprise her at work by showing up for a lunch date. Woman always love to be surprised and your lunch date will give her the opportunity to get out of the office for a little while and enjoy some time with you. Many women skip lunch or work straight through it but giving her the opportunity to break away from her desk for even a half hour will give her a welcomed chance to relax a little bit.

Finally if you want to do something really nice for the woman in your life, it could be as simple as opening the car door for her when you go out. Women enjoy being independent but small chivalrous gestures are always appreciated. If you normally rush to the driver’s side of the car and hop in, stop once in awhile to open her door first. It will show her that you want to protect and care for her and will make her feel well loved.

There are many ways you can show your love for the special woman in your life. Many of the items listed above may be seemingly small, inconsequential things but it is these little things that really show a woman that you care. Doing nice things for a woman demonstrate that you want to go out of your way to make sure that she is happy.

Permalink • Print

January 17, 2006

10 Creative Ways to Propose

Marriage proposals made over a romantic dinner at an elegant restaurant can be very romantic but they are not necessarily creative. Many women dream about the day that the man of their dreams proposes to them and hope that the day will be absolutely perfect in every way imaginable. In a recent study the majority of married women reported that they believe that their spouse spent a significant amount of money on their wedding proposal but that the lack of originality in the proposal had left the women feeling disappointed.

One creative way to propose for a couple involved in a long distance relationship is to plan a surprise visit and set up a scavenger hunt. You could have a friend pick you up from the airport so that your girlfriend doesn’t know that you are coming to visit and have the friend give your girlfriend instructions for the scavenger hunt. You could hide a number of small surprises such as candy, flowers and a CD as the first few stops on the scavenger hunt and then hide at the final location poised to propose when your girlfriend completes the game.

An outdoor enthusiast might appreciate a creative proposal during a camping trip. It’s a good idea to plan a quiet trip for just you and your girlfriend at a picturesque location. You could hide the ring in your sleeping bag to use in a surprise proposal. When it’s time to go to sleep after a long day of hiking and fishing, you could complain that there must be a rock or something underneath you and then pull out the ring and make your proposal. This creative proposal also contains the element of surprise as a camping trip is not a usual proposal location.

Another creative proposal idea is to place an ad in a local newspaper. You could place an outrageous ad in a newspaper asking anyone who was willing to get married to give you a call and include a fictitious phone number. Then when you and your girlfriend are reading the paper together, you could point out the ad as a joke and while she is reading the ad, seize the opportunity to pull out the engagement ring and let her know that you would love to marry her.

Proposing at a sporting event is a creative way to propose to a sports fan. For this proposal idea you could either arrange to have your proposal broadcast over the public address system or displayed on the large screen. If you are really adventurous, you could also contact the team’s public relations department and try to make arrangements to make your proposal on the field at halftime. They might be willing to help you stage a scenario where you are either chosen to win a prize or participate in a contest and while you are on the field, they would hand over the microphone to allow you to make your proposal.

Another creative marriage proposal idea is to purchase a book of poems and leave the first few pages intact and carve a heart into the remaining pages and sew the engagement ring to the back of the book. You could suggest taking turns reading the poems on each page and plan to have your girlfriend turn the final complete page to reveal the heart and ring that were hidden inside. This proposal idea is not only creative but also incredibly romantic.

Having the DJ of your girlfriend’s favorite radio program ask her if she will marry you is another creative proposal idea. You will want to make sure that you are aware of the exact time that the DJ will be sending your message so that you are able to ensure that you and your girlfriend are listening together when he makes the announcement. You could also arrange to have the DJ play a song that has a special meaning for you as a couple so that you can enjoy a dance together after she accepts your creative proposal.

Another creative way to propose is to include all of your family and friends in the event by inviting them all to a surprise party for your girlfriend. To make this proposal work, you would either convince your girlfriend that you want to have a quiet dinner at home or at a restaurant with just the two of you. Once you arrive at the destination all of the guests will reveal themselves and while all eyes are on the two of you, you could take the opportunity to profess your love and propose.

Still another creative way to propose is to hide the ring in an unexpected location. For example you could pretend to have a clogged sink and while you are working to fix the clog, you could reach into the sink and pull out the engagement ring. When your girlfriend is nearby, you could seize the opportunity to pull out the ring you had hidden earlier and say something to the effect of, “No wonder the sink is clogged, I’ll have to find another place to store this ring, how about your finger?” This whimsical proposal is both light-hearted and creative.

A variation on the traditional proposal at an elegant restaurant could be to have the waiter bring out the ring with the bill. You could have a little good natured fun with your girlfriend by going out of your way to drop hints that you would be proposing over dinner. If you keep up the act, she will be expecting your proposal with each course. After dessert you could tell her that you have something very important to ask and as she eagerly awaits your proposal, you could ask an inconsequential question about something completely irrelevant to your relationship. She will probably be furious at this point but her anger won’t last as the waiter arrives with the bill and the engagement ring and you let her know how much she means to you.

Finally a creative proposal idea is for the woman to ask the man to marry her, instead of waiting for him to propose. Many women anxiously await the day that the man in their life will propose but why not add your own creative twist by proposing to him instead. The woman is free to propose in any way that she finds truly romantic and can ensure that the proposal is both creative and romantic and that it’s a moment that they both will remember for the rest of their lives.

A great marriage proposal doesn’t have to be expensive or extravagant. Many women are more likely to cherish the memories of a proposal that was inexpensive but truly creative. The creativity is what makes the proposal so memorable and what makes it a great story to tell their friends.

Permalink • Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
hobby stores | Your Relations

July 22, 2006

Baby Specialty Stores

A newborn baby is the celebration of life. It is a time where friends and family celebrate the birth of a child and the challenges and memories that will occur in the future.

Getting a gift does not only happen before the baby is born but is a continuous process that will occur as the infant grows older.

Giving something does not have to be a chore. It can be fun and challenging and by knowing the gender, the needs of the baby and other things that are equally important to the mother and child, this will be something that the family will certainly love and appreciate.

The best place to look for things for a baby is a specialty store since such places have everything from clothes, bibs, and bottles to baby baskets and strollers. Some of these specialty shops can be found inside malls while others share a small space in a building with other tenants.

Categories are divided from infant to toddler depending on the age, size and weight of the child. Before one buys something inside the shop, it is best to know what is available by looking around. If the person has something in mind, then by asking for assistance will really help saving time in getting the ideal gift from the baby store.

Some baby stores carry other brands aside from the ones that are primarily carried by that company which limits the choices of other products that may be available.

One can just get the company name and perhaps do some surfing in the internet to see what else is available and if it is affordable, then one can order it online and wait for a few days for the manufacturer to ship it to ones home.

Here are some suggested gifts that are great for either the mother or child;

1. A bobby is a support pillow that has a dual function. It can act as a nursing pillow for the mother and a toy for the baby. This will help sore the tired arms during the first months of breastfeeding and helps the baby play.

2. A breast pump is another great gift since this handy device will help women get milk for the baby which is very convenient and inexpensive.

3. A baby basket is a handy carrier which can be carried around. This comes in many models and one can get one that is good till the infant becomes a toddler.

4. Since the child is not able to be toilet trained yet, a lot of diapers will be needed keeping the baby clean and odorless free.

5. The toddler bath is similar to a bathtub. This something both the mother and infant can enjoy when taking a bath.

7. Babies love to cuddle and stuff toys like a bear can help put the baby to sleep or just help it relax.

Babies can be cute, smell good, are quiet and noisy at certain times. It is all part of the phase of the baby growing up. It is a challenge that the parents and those close to the family can do together in making this baby grow up.

Picking a gift does not have to be expensive. There are many things one can get and if that person is not able to pick one, then that person can just pick a variety of things and put it in a basket that the mother and child will surely enjoy.

Permalink • Print

February 6, 2006

Ideas for Inexpensive Centerpieces

Traditional floral centerpieces can be expensive especially if you plan on having a large number of tables at the wedding reception. While floral arrangements have traditionally been the centerpiece of choice at many weddings there are many more original centerpiece ideas that are also very inexpensive. Depending on the theme and color scheme of the wedding, there are a variety of low cost options available.

A wedding with a light-hearted theme hosted by a fun loving couple might be a suitable opportunity to utilize candy to create festive centerpieces. Clear glass bowls can be filled with colorful candies such as jelly beans or M & Ms to create a lovely and very inexpensive centerpiece that reflects the personalities of the bride and groom. The candy and bowls can probably be purchased for a fraction of the price of floral centerpieces and create a lovely centerpiece that is easily assembled and can be enjoyed by all of the guests.

The bride and groom can also opt for silk floral arrangements if they are intent on having flowers as their centerpiece. Many hobby stores sell a wide variety of attractive artificial flowers that can be arranged by the bride and groom to create attractive centerpieces for the tables. Using fake flowers gives the couple more of an opportunity to express their creativity. The hobby store also likely sells inexpensive vases so the couple may be able to purchase everything they need for the centerpieces in one location. Arranging the flowers in a vase is nice but long stemmed flowers such as calla lilies also look very attractive tied with twine or ribbon and simply laid in the center of the table. The couple could either choose seasonal artificial flowers or artificial flowers that fit the theme of the wedding and arrange them in inexpensive vases or tie them with attractive ribbons to create inexpensive centerpieces for their wedding.

Another inexpensive option for a couple wishing to utilize flowers for their centerpieces is to use potted plants. You can find a multitude of inexpensive potted plants at home improvement stores, greenhouses, and even grocery stores. The couple can choose plants that match the other decorations for the wedding or that will stand out amongst the other decorations. These plants could be repotted into festive pots to create attractive centerpieces for a relatively low cost.

Balloons can be another option for a couple looking to have fun yet inexpensive centerpieces. Balloons are relatively inexpensive and can be easily found in a wide variety of colors and patterns. The couple could choose solid or print patterns that match the colors of the table linens. An extra tip for these centerpieces is to weigh down the balloons with a piece of candy. This will encourage each guest at the table to take home a balloon as a souvenir. With a typical centerpiece only one guest has the opportunity to take home the centerpiece but using balloons makes it possible for each guest to take home a part of the centerpiece.

Another inexpensive wedding table centerpiece is a picture frame in the shape of cube that allows the insertion of a photo into each side of the cube. The couple may choose to include pictures of themselves during their courting or they may wish to include pictures of them with the guests who will be sitting at that table. This is a great opportunity for the couple to express their individuality and share a little bit of themselves with their guests. Artfully arranged photographs create fun centerpieces that are also very inexpensive.

Candles also create a very attractive yet inexpensive centerpiece. The couple may choose to purchase many of the same candle or candles of varying shapes, sizes and colors to arrange on the tables. Candles of the same size, shape and color can be arranged in a uniform pattern to create a beautiful centerpiece. Candles that vary in size, shape and color can be placed at random on the table to create an eclectic appeal.

With a little bit of thought and creativity a couple can find centerpiece options that are affordable, attractive and well suited for the couple. The traditional centerpieces of floral arrangements can be boring and also extremely expensive. Utilizing creativity and ingenuity to create centerpieces that are an accurate representation of the taste of the couple often creates a more appealing centerpiece at a very affordable price.

Permalink • Print

September 19, 2006

10 Great Places to Meet New Women

There are a lot of great women out there just waiting to meet the man of their dreams but finding these available women can take a little creativity. Sure there are plenty of single women at bars and nightclubs but the competition is also tough with many men also trying to meet women and women are usually on guard at these locations so getting through their defenses can be difficult. Instead of battling other men for a woman’s affection at a bar, try meeting women in new locations. Specifically locations that sport a high female to male ration will enhance your chances of meeting new women.

A woman’s clothing store is a great place to meet new women. Not only is this location filled with women but it is also almost completely devoid of other men. Many men avoid a woman’s clothing store like the plague so if you are brave enough to venture inside you will have an assortment of women to choose from. You can start a conversation by asking a woman for advice for a gift for your sister or by complimenting her on her purchases.

The gym can also be another great place to meet new women. While you may already spend hours a day pumping iron in the weight room try spending some time on a cardio machine or drop in on an aerobics or yoga class. These activities are typically dominated by women so engaging in these activities increases your chance of meeting women while at the gym.

Another great place to meet new women is in an adult continuing education class. Many community colleges offer night classes on a variety of subjects. Try signing up for a class or two and you may find that you meet a variety of new women. The key to choosing a class is to not only choose a class that sounds interesting but to also choose a class that is likely to consist of mostly women such as cooking classes or pottery classes.

The Internet is always an option for meeting women. You can try placing a personals ad online or join a dating service to read profiles of available men. There are so many personals sites available that it would almost be impossible not to find a suitable match. Just be sure to exercise caution and not give out your contact information or agree to meet anyone in a secluded location.

Hobby and craft stores are also excellent places to meet new women. Many women enjoy activities in arts and craft and often frequent these types of stores to purchase items for craft projects. More importantly though this is a hobby that does not attract many men so you will most likely be one of only a few men in the store.

Tanning spas or salons can be great places to meet new women. Again, these locations aren’t frequented by men so you are most likely to be one of the only men present. If you are attracted to women who put a lot of effort into their appearance the salon is definitely the place to go. Here you will find women who are committed to their appearance and who will appreciate you for your ability to understand that a manicure is just as important to men as it is to women.

If you are in search of a woman with interests similar to yours, a bookstore might just be the place for you. Try visiting a bookstore and only searching sections of the bookstore that interest you. Forget about attempting to determine what section might attract the most women and stick to the sections that hold your interests. You might be pleasantly surprised to meet a new woman who shares your passion for restoring old cars.

Sporting events can also be a great place to meet women who either share your love of sports or are in search of men themselves. You may attend a baseball game and wind up meeting a woman who shares your love of sports or you may at least meet a woman who is trying to meet a man. Sporting events are typically well attended by men so it’s possible that the women you meet at a sporting event are trying to put the odds in their favor and use this opportunity to meet men.

Another great place to meet new women is the theater. Women are typically drawn to the arts and if you begin attending local theater productions you may find the opportunity to meet a variety of new women. Not many men take in plays or operas on their own so doing so will help you to stand out from the crowd and single women are more likely to notice you.

Finally a grocery story is a great place to meet new women. Women make up the larger percentage of grocery shoppers so as one of only few men the odds will be in your favor. Also, women typically are experienced shoppers and you can take this opportunity to ask for their assistance in picking out produce or choosing a pasta sauce. Women will be flattered by you asking their advice and may be open to inviting you to their place for a home cooked meal.

While bars and nightclubs are certainly full of available women the likelihood of meeting a woman at these locations is slim to none. Although many women frequent nightclubs and bars in the hopes of meeting a man, these are also locations where women feel vulnerable and are likely to have their defenses up making them unapproachable. Try frequenting other locations and you may have an easier time meeting available women with interests similar to your own.

Permalink • Print

January 18, 2006

10 Great Places to Meet New Men

If you are tired of searching for a man in the usual singles scenes such as bars and nightclubs, it may be time to broaden your horizons and try alternative locations for meeting men. If you think outside the box and begin exploring new locations you may find that meeting a man who shares your interests is easier than you thought. A few non traditional locations for meeting men include gyms, animal shelters, home improvement stores and sports bars. While these locations may contain a high male to female relationship it’s important to choose a location where you are comfortable to search for Mr. Right. If you don’t enjoy working out or are allergic to animals it would be best to avoid gyms and animal shelters in your quest for a mate because they will most likely lead to you finding a man who is not compatible with you. There are many locations that are filled with available men and these are great locations to meet new men.

The gym is a great place to meet new men. If you don’t already have a gym membership, sign up for your local gym and prepare to meet a multitude of new men. Even if you don’t find your Prince Charming at the gym, you will have at least had the opportunity to enjoy some physical activity. The gym is a great place to meet men for a number of reasons. First of all while women make up a significant percentage of the gym, men still make up the larger percentage of clientele at most gyms. Venturing into historically male dominated areas such as the weight room heightens your chance of meeting a new man. You can take the opportunity as one of the few women in the weight room to chat up a man and ask his advice.

If you are an animal lover, you can meet available new men at your local animal shelter. If you have a love for animals and a desire to meet a new man head on down to an animal shelter on a busy weekend afternoon. Here you may find many men in search of a canine companion. The bonus in this situation is that the single men are easy to spot. Men involved in a relationship wouldn’t consider adopting a dog without their partner’s input so you can be sure that if there isn’t a woman hanging on his arm, he is available.

Outdoor activities such as hiking also present an opportunity for meeting new men. Instead of dressing up and heading out to a chic nightclub in the evening try waking up early and hitting the hiking trails with one of your pals. If you are interested in meeting the rugged outdoors type of man, this can be your opportunity to meet an available man.

Anther great place to meet new men is a home improvement store. These stores are almost overrun with handy men. You may find the man of the dreams in the tool aisle or at the very least may find a man who is capable of fixing a leaky faucet for you. While home improvement and maintenance may not be your idea of a way to spend a Saturday evening you might be pleasantly surprised by the number of available men wandering the aisles of a home improvement store on a weekend night.

If you are interested in meeting an artistic man, coffee houses are another place to meet new men. The relaxed, cozy atmosphere of a coffee house provides the perfect mood to strike up a casual conversation with a new man. Coffee houses invite customers to linger over the coffee and this is the ideal opportunity to approach a man who catches your eye.

The woman who enjoys sports would be well advised to visit a sports bar on the night of an important local game to meet the man of her dreams. This location works wonders for meeting new many for a few reasons. First you will most likely be one of only a few women in the bar and secondly displaying any knowledge of the sport will charm the men in the bar.

If you have a specific interest or hobby, try taking a course on the subject. In doing so you will further your knowledge about your hobby and may meet a new man in the process. Many men enjoy taking courses and learning about new activities so you may find yourself pleasantly surprised by the number of men in your class.

If you are the athletic type, you may find a great place to meet new men is in a local sports league. Try signing up for a recreational league in either a sport you enjoy or one that you have always wanted to learn. Some cities even have singles leagues that you might be interested in joining. This will give you the opportunity to meet a wealth of men who share you love of sports. Even if you don’t wind up meeting the man of the dreams you will have at least had the opportunity to participate in a sport you enjoy.

The technically inclined, modern woman may choose to meet new men online. There are plenty of dating sites available on the Internet that are just full of single men looking to make a love connection. You may find personals sites that cater to a specific interest or those that cater to specific demographic groups. Searching for a man online affords you the ability to read through personals ads at your leisure and allows you to search and sort men according to different categories.

Another great place to meet new men is a Laundromat. Even if you own your own washer and dryer, head on down to your local Laundromat and you are sure to meet available men. While the Laundromat may not be your ideal location for meeting a new man, there are some distinct advantages to meeting a man in a Laundromat. First you can be almost positive that a guy doing his laundry by himself is truly single and secondly it never hurt to meet a man who is capable of doing his own laundry.

If you find yourself frustrated with the lack of new men available at bars and nightclubs try venturing out to different locations to meet new men. The key to doing this is to choose an activity you enjoy and head out to an appropriate location in search of a compatible man. Men are out there doing just about every activity imaginable so whether you like artistic, athletic or handy men, there are more than a few places that are great for meeting new men.

Permalink • Print

January 10, 2006

10 Great “No Reason” Gifts for Under $10

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s the thought that counts,” and this is especially true when giving a gift in a relationship. Simple gifts given to a loved one, don’t have to be for any reason other than to let them know that you care and are thinking of them and these gifts don’t have to be expensive. With a little creativeness you can give your loved one a gift that shows how much you love them and value your relationship for under $10.

The key to giving inexpensive gifts is to make sure they are something that the person you are giving the gift to will really cherish and appreciate. To give a really great inexpensive gift you have to think beyond the generic gifts of perfumed soaps and lotions for women and ties and socks for men. In giving inexpensive gifts try to personalize the gift to reflect the personality or hobbies of the recipient of the gift.

One inexpensive gift idea for a person who enjoys cooking is a specialty cookbook such as a dessert or ethnic cookbook. Interesting cook books can often be found in the discount section of book stores for less than $10. For an additional twist try making one of the dishes in the cookbook yourself and serving it when you present the gift to your loved one. Your loved one will appreciate the gesture and enjoy sharing the dish with you and will remember that moment fondly when using the cookbook.

For a sentimental soul, give a gift of personal photos arranged in a photo album in a unique way. Photo albums can be found for just a few dollars in convenience stores and you can use existing photos to fill the pages. The key to this gift is to present the photos in an original way. Try creating a photo album with a theme such as one that documents your relationship from courtship to your current stage or one that highlights the trips you have taken together.

The runner in your life will appreciate an inexpensive stopwatch or pedometer. While these gadgets can get pricey you can still find models that perform the basic functions for under $10. This gift lets you know that you are thinking of them and that you understand their hobby. They will appreciate your interest in their activities. You can even include a note letting them know you would love to join them for a run one day.

Another inexpensive gift idea is a basket filled with homemade cookies, breads or other goodies. If you know that your sweetheart has a sweet tooth, invest a few hours of your time to bake up some tasty treats for your loved one just to let them know you are thinking of them. They will not only enjoy the treat you have prepared but will also appreciate the effort that went into the gift. If the person you are baking the goodies for is on a special diet, be sure to incorporate their dietary needs into your recipe.

A homemade coupon book is always a welcomed gift and can certainly be made for under $10. Create coupons on your computer or by hand for services that you know your loved one will enjoy and include a small gift to go with the theme of the coupon book. For example the man in a relationship where the couple has children could give the woman a bottle of nail polish along with coupons offering his services as a babysitter while she goes out for a manicure with a friend. She will appreciate that you are sending her out to be pampered while you get a chance to enjoy some time with the kids. In giving this gift try to think of something your partner will appreciate but won’t splurge on for themselves.

Search the discount DVD bins for ones that are less than $10. Believe it or not, they are available and you just might find one that would make a great gift for someone you love. Inexpensive DVDs are often less mainstream and you could use that originality to try something new. If your partner is always trying to get you to go dancing but you keep refusing, you might find an instructional video on flamenco dancing or square dancing. Invite your loved one over and try following the video together.

Flowers don’t have to cost a fortune. You may spend hundreds on red roses for Valentine’s Day but for everyday occasions or for no reason at all, you could stop by your local supermarket and pick up a bouquet of colorful wild flowers from their floral department. Ditch the cellophane wrapper that the flowers come in and arrange them in a vase yourself or tie them with a pretty ribbon. Pre-arranged bouquets such as these are often available for under $10.

A CD filled with songs that your loved one enjoys or that have special meaning for you as a couple makes a wonderful and inexpensive gift. For under $10 you could easily use your computer to assemble a CD of meaningful songs. You could even create a CD cover that conveys the message you want to send with the CD.

Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy a trip to a local National Park to hike, observe wildlife and enjoy the outdoors so surprise your partner with a day trip to the park. Entry fees for many National Parks are under $10 and you and your loved one will have the opportunity to spend quality time together. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day enjoying nature and each others company.

If your loved one enjoys working out, a jump rope is a gift that you can give them for less than $10. This inexpensive gift will not only remind them of their childhood but also demonstrate that you understand them and realize that fitness is important in their life. An even better idea is to buy one for yourself as well and challenge your loved one to a friendly competition.

Gift giving doesn’t have to be expensive and doesn’t have to be for a specific occasion. Surprise your partner with well thought out gifts that reflect their interests. With a little creativity you can give your loved one a gift that shows how well you know them and they are in your thoughts every day and you don’t have to spend more than $10 to do so.

Permalink • Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
inexpensive option | Your Relations

February 6, 2006

Ideas for Inexpensive Centerpieces

Traditional floral centerpieces can be expensive especially if you plan on having a large number of tables at the wedding reception. While floral arrangements have traditionally been the centerpiece of choice at many weddings there are many more original centerpiece ideas that are also very inexpensive. Depending on the theme and color scheme of the wedding, there are a variety of low cost options available.

A wedding with a light-hearted theme hosted by a fun loving couple might be a suitable opportunity to utilize candy to create festive centerpieces. Clear glass bowls can be filled with colorful candies such as jelly beans or M & Ms to create a lovely and very inexpensive centerpiece that reflects the personalities of the bride and groom. The candy and bowls can probably be purchased for a fraction of the price of floral centerpieces and create a lovely centerpiece that is easily assembled and can be enjoyed by all of the guests.

The bride and groom can also opt for silk floral arrangements if they are intent on having flowers as their centerpiece. Many hobby stores sell a wide variety of attractive artificial flowers that can be arranged by the bride and groom to create attractive centerpieces for the tables. Using fake flowers gives the couple more of an opportunity to express their creativity. The hobby store also likely sells inexpensive vases so the couple may be able to purchase everything they need for the centerpieces in one location. Arranging the flowers in a vase is nice but long stemmed flowers such as calla lilies also look very attractive tied with twine or ribbon and simply laid in the center of the table. The couple could either choose seasonal artificial flowers or artificial flowers that fit the theme of the wedding and arrange them in inexpensive vases or tie them with attractive ribbons to create inexpensive centerpieces for their wedding.

Another inexpensive option for a couple wishing to utilize flowers for their centerpieces is to use potted plants. You can find a multitude of inexpensive potted plants at home improvement stores, greenhouses, and even grocery stores. The couple can choose plants that match the other decorations for the wedding or that will stand out amongst the other decorations. These plants could be repotted into festive pots to create attractive centerpieces for a relatively low cost.

Balloons can be another option for a couple looking to have fun yet inexpensive centerpieces. Balloons are relatively inexpensive and can be easily found in a wide variety of colors and patterns. The couple could choose solid or print patterns that match the colors of the table linens. An extra tip for these centerpieces is to weigh down the balloons with a piece of candy. This will encourage each guest at the table to take home a balloon as a souvenir. With a typical centerpiece only one guest has the opportunity to take home the centerpiece but using balloons makes it possible for each guest to take home a part of the centerpiece.

Another inexpensive wedding table centerpiece is a picture frame in the shape of cube that allows the insertion of a photo into each side of the cube. The couple may choose to include pictures of themselves during their courting or they may wish to include pictures of them with the guests who will be sitting at that table. This is a great opportunity for the couple to express their individuality and share a little bit of themselves with their guests. Artfully arranged photographs create fun centerpieces that are also very inexpensive.

Candles also create a very attractive yet inexpensive centerpiece. The couple may choose to purchase many of the same candle or candles of varying shapes, sizes and colors to arrange on the tables. Candles of the same size, shape and color can be arranged in a uniform pattern to create a beautiful centerpiece. Candles that vary in size, shape and color can be placed at random on the table to create an eclectic appeal.

With a little bit of thought and creativity a couple can find centerpiece options that are affordable, attractive and well suited for the couple. The traditional centerpieces of floral arrangements can be boring and also extremely expensive. Utilizing creativity and ingenuity to create centerpieces that are an accurate representation of the taste of the couple often creates a more appealing centerpiece at a very affordable price.

Permalink • Print

April 27, 2006

Options for Wedding music

The old saying is that, “music soothes the savage beast.” Music can also maintain the pleasant atmosphere of your wedding. Choosing wedding music is not always the easiest task in a wedding. You have to put some thought into the wedding music that will be played and how it will be played. Of course, budget concerns are also something to consider when making your wedding music decisions.

The tradition for wedding music is to hire a live band that will play during the wedding reception. Check your local area to see if there is a band available that is willing to play wedding music during your reception. If you are a member of a church that has a band, you might request their services during your reception. This may choose to be less expensive than hiring a local band. When you hire a band, be sure to discuss meals in addition to wedding music selections. Although the bride and groom are not traditionally responsible for feeding the band, it is something that a band may include in their list of requirements.

Hiring a DJ should be similar to hiring a music coordinator. The DJ is in charge of the music entertainment. Don’t take this position lightly. You need someone who is not only talented with wedding music selection, but someone who will be able to keep your guests entertained. For example, a good DJ will play music that everyone can enjoy. The music the DJ plays will serve as your wedding music. It is a good idea that you request to review the collection of wedding music the DJ intends to play. If you don’t know someone who can serve as your DJ, you may want to solicit the services of a local radio station DJ.

Another option to having people control your music is to use CDs of appropriate wedding music. This option is appropriate for the wedding and the reception. If the wedding ceremony is going to be held in a church, you will probably need your music approved. Be sure to take care of this as soon as possible. There are collections of wedding music that you can find in just about any store that sells music that are probably fairly inexpensive. You could also create your own CDs or have someone with a variety of music create the CD for you. With the prevalence of music-recording software, it’s easy to make your own wedding music CDs.

Permalink • Print

April 20, 2006

Inexpensive Wedding Gifts

A wedding gift does not have to be expensive to be well received and appreciated by the couple. While the extravagance of some weddings may compel their guests to purchase pricey gifts, it is not necessary to do so. Many people are invited to a number of weddings each year and it’s not feasible to purchase an expensive gift for every wedding you attend. While you may want to splurge on an extravagant gift for a close friend or relative, you are not required to invest a great deal of money in a gift for a casual acquaintance. Even if you are very close with the couple you may be able to create a very inexpensive gift for their wedding. The following are just a few ideas for inexpensive wedding gifts that are sure to delight the couple without breaking your budget.

One inexpensive gift idea is to fill a mixing bowl with a variety of kitchen utensils. This is both an inexpensive and an extremely useful gift. Many couples are starting their life together and will need a few basic utensils and kitchen gadgets to get them started. This gift is thoughtful and useful without being detrimental to your budget.

Another inexpensive gift idea is to create a basket containing elements for a romantic dinner. You could put this basket together by yourself and include items such as dry pasta and sauce as well as a bottle of wine and two wine glasses. You might also want to include a non-perishable desert such as biscotti to complete your meal. You could even include a recipe card with one of your own personally tested recipes. This inexpensive gift idea will be greatly valued by the couple because it essentially giving them the gift of a romantic night alone.

Picture frames can also be an inexpensive wedding gift idea. The couple will likely have a wide variety of photos that they will want to display in their home and providing them with a few simple frames is an inexpensive way to give them a truly useful gift. While many picture frames can be expensive, you could find simple wooden frames in a craft store and paint or decorate to suit the couple’s taste. You could also shop at closeout stores for these items and may find quite a few bargains available. Picture frames are an inexpensive and useful wedding gift idea that is likely to be cherished by the couple.

The couple’s registry could also be another source of inexpensive wedding gift ideas. Many couples will register for an assortment of items that span a large price spectrum. You may find that the couple has included many inexpensive items in their registry that may fall within your budget constraints. Choosing an inexpensive item from the couple’s registry ensures that you are giving them a gift that they will truly like and appreciate because they picked out the item themselves.

If you are a close friend or relative of the couple you may be able to make a very inexpensive wedding gift that will also be unique and greatly cherished by the couple. If you have many pictures of the couple, you might consider arranging these pictures in a unique way in a photo album to give to the couple as a gift. You could also use the photos to create a scrapbook or even a video presentation set to music that features the couple. These gifts will be greatly appreciated by the couple and can be created for a relatively small cost.

Candles are another inexpensive wedding gift. Newlyweds often incorporate candles in their decorating and also use candles to create ambiance during dinner or on other occasions. Just after they are married is the time when couples are most likely to enjoy candlelight dinners frequently and for no specific occasion so a wedding gift of candles is bound to be used often. Candles come in a great variety of colors, sizes and scents so it should be easy to find an assortment of candles that will be appreciated by the couple.

A wedding gift does not have to be expensive to be useful and appreciated by the couple. Many wedding guests spend a great deal of money on fancy china or glassware that is only used on special occasions while inexpensive gifts such as candles and kitchen utensils are used by the couple on a daily basis.

Permalink • Print

January 10, 2006

10 Great “No Reason” Gifts for Under $10

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s the thought that counts,” and this is especially true when giving a gift in a relationship. Simple gifts given to a loved one, don’t have to be for any reason other than to let them know that you care and are thinking of them and these gifts don’t have to be expensive. With a little creativeness you can give your loved one a gift that shows how much you love them and value your relationship for under $10.

The key to giving inexpensive gifts is to make sure they are something that the person you are giving the gift to will really cherish and appreciate. To give a really great inexpensive gift you have to think beyond the generic gifts of perfumed soaps and lotions for women and ties and socks for men. In giving inexpensive gifts try to personalize the gift to reflect the personality or hobbies of the recipient of the gift.

One inexpensive gift idea for a person who enjoys cooking is a specialty cookbook such as a dessert or ethnic cookbook. Interesting cook books can often be found in the discount section of book stores for less than $10. For an additional twist try making one of the dishes in the cookbook yourself and serving it when you present the gift to your loved one. Your loved one will appreciate the gesture and enjoy sharing the dish with you and will remember that moment fondly when using the cookbook.

For a sentimental soul, give a gift of personal photos arranged in a photo album in a unique way. Photo albums can be found for just a few dollars in convenience stores and you can use existing photos to fill the pages. The key to this gift is to present the photos in an original way. Try creating a photo album with a theme such as one that documents your relationship from courtship to your current stage or one that highlights the trips you have taken together.

The runner in your life will appreciate an inexpensive stopwatch or pedometer. While these gadgets can get pricey you can still find models that perform the basic functions for under $10. This gift lets you know that you are thinking of them and that you understand their hobby. They will appreciate your interest in their activities. You can even include a note letting them know you would love to join them for a run one day.

Another inexpensive gift idea is a basket filled with homemade cookies, breads or other goodies. If you know that your sweetheart has a sweet tooth, invest a few hours of your time to bake up some tasty treats for your loved one just to let them know you are thinking of them. They will not only enjoy the treat you have prepared but will also appreciate the effort that went into the gift. If the person you are baking the goodies for is on a special diet, be sure to incorporate their dietary needs into your recipe.

A homemade coupon book is always a welcomed gift and can certainly be made for under $10. Create coupons on your computer or by hand for services that you know your loved one will enjoy and include a small gift to go with the theme of the coupon book. For example the man in a relationship where the couple has children could give the woman a bottle of nail polish along with coupons offering his services as a babysitter while she goes out for a manicure with a friend. She will appreciate that you are sending her out to be pampered while you get a chance to enjoy some time with the kids. In giving this gift try to think of something your partner will appreciate but won’t splurge on for themselves.

Search the discount DVD bins for ones that are less than $10. Believe it or not, they are available and you just might find one that would make a great gift for someone you love. Inexpensive DVDs are often less mainstream and you could use that originality to try something new. If your partner is always trying to get you to go dancing but you keep refusing, you might find an instructional video on flamenco dancing or square dancing. Invite your loved one over and try following the video together.

Flowers don’t have to cost a fortune. You may spend hundreds on red roses for Valentine’s Day but for everyday occasions or for no reason at all, you could stop by your local supermarket and pick up a bouquet of colorful wild flowers from their floral department. Ditch the cellophane wrapper that the flowers come in and arrange them in a vase yourself or tie them with a pretty ribbon. Pre-arranged bouquets such as these are often available for under $10.

A CD filled with songs that your loved one enjoys or that have special meaning for you as a couple makes a wonderful and inexpensive gift. For under $10 you could easily use your computer to assemble a CD of meaningful songs. You could even create a CD cover that conveys the message you want to send with the CD.

Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy a trip to a local National Park to hike, observe wildlife and enjoy the outdoors so surprise your partner with a day trip to the park. Entry fees for many National Parks are under $10 and you and your loved one will have the opportunity to spend quality time together. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day enjoying nature and each others company.

If your loved one enjoys working out, a jump rope is a gift that you can give them for less than $10. This inexpensive gift will not only remind them of their childhood but also demonstrate that you understand them and realize that fitness is important in their life. An even better idea is to buy one for yourself as well and challenge your loved one to a friendly competition.

Gift giving doesn’t have to be expensive and doesn’t have to be for a specific occasion. Surprise your partner with well thought out gifts that reflect their interests. With a little creativity you can give your loved one a gift that shows how well you know them and they are in your thoughts every day and you don’t have to spend more than $10 to do so.

Permalink • Print

January 22, 2006

Non-Denominational or Mixed Religion Weddings

Couples of mixed religions or who come from families that do not have a strong religious background may choose to have either a non-denominational wedding or a wedding that blends two separate religions. This can be tricky however because many religions may not honor or recognize a wedding unless it is performed according to their own unique guidelines. For this reason it is very important to check with potential officiants and church leaders to ensure that your wedding plans will result in a union that is recognized by both churches. This is significant because you would not want to invest time and money on a marriage that will wind up not being recognized by the church and possibly not even recognized by the government. Whether a couple decides to have a non-denominational wedding, incorporate aspects of both religion into a ceremony that will not be recognized by either faith or participate in two separate religious ceremonies, it is important to remember that their love for each other and their love of their faith are equally important.

If both the bride and the groom have very strong faith backgrounds and wish to have their wedding recognized by their respective churches, they may have to take a few extra steps to ensure that their union is recognized by their churches. Sometimes the only way to do this is to have a wedding ceremony in both churches. This may seem like an unnecessary step but one of the defining criteria of having your marriage recognized by your faith, for many religions, is to have your wedding ceremony in the church. It is simply not possible to do this unless the couple takes the extra steps of having two wedding ceremonies to ensure that they will be both be accepted as a married couple into their faiths.

Another alternative to participating in two separate ceremonies in order to have the union recognized by both churches is to have a non-denominational wedding that is only recognized by the government. Couples may choose this option if they do not have the time or money that would be required to have two separate wedding ceremonies. A couple may choose a compromise that results in neither church recognizing the union. The theory behind this type of choice is that the couple decides that their love for each other is strong enough to survive and that they do not need to have the approval of their churches in order to have a successful and lasting marriage.

Still another alternative is to have a non-denominational wedding ceremony at a location in a natural setting. At this type of ceremony the couple has no restrictions and can choose to incorporate either religion into the ceremony in any way that they see fit. They may do this by using traditional prayers and religious songs during the ceremony. While this type of ceremony will not be recognized by the church is does offer the couple the opportunity to incorporate some of the religious traditions of both of their faiths into a beautiful ceremony that successfully blends two religions.

A final alternative is to incorporate one faith fully into the wedding ceremony and incorporate the other faith fully into the wedding reception. This option results in the marriage being recognized by one of the religions but does not allow the other family to feel neglected because their faith is well represented in the traditional activities of the wedding reception. This option is only feasible if the member of the couple who will not have their church recognize the union, is completely accepting and understand of this fact. This is important because the resentment and jealousy that could result from this could be very detrimental to the couple.

Inter-faith couples are on the rise. Years ago it was unheard of to marry someone outside of your faith but this is no longer true and many couples today are inter-faith couples. It is difficult but not impossible to integrate the two faiths in a way that is satisfactory to all of those involved. While the faiths can be blended to create a beautiful wedding, the problem is that many churches will not accept this blended wedding as a union. Sometimes the couple decides that their happiness together is more important than having the church recognize the union so they opt for a non-denominational wedding that is completely devoid of any religious traditions.

Permalink • Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
traditional toast | Your Relations

5 Toast Ideas for the Best Man

The best man traditionally offers the first toast at a wedding. His toast can offer a thought provoking look at married life, honor his friendship with the groom or reveal intimate and often embarrassing details of the couple’s courtship. The traditional toast is simply a short speech given verbally but best men are free to try other approaches to the toast such as a slideshow or a video presentation. The best man could also choose to give a verbal toast with a few new twists.

The traditional best man’s toast is a verbal speech that is given early in the reception. Although it is unoriginal, this type of toast is widely accepted and popular. If the best man is married himself, he may want to take this opportunity to offer the couple some sage advice for enjoying a happy and peaceful marriage. He may also wish to simply state why he admires the bride and the groom and offer his best wishes. Still another popular option for this traditional version of a best man’s toast is to regale the guests with a slew of stories from the groom’s wilder days. This, however, is not recommended at a wedding attended by mostly conservative guests as this can be embarrassing to both the couple and the guests.

A slideshow is on increasingly popular way for the best man to toast the new couple. You could take the opportunity to display various pictures of the bride and groom separately and as a couple. One option is to interview both parents prior to the wedding and ask them to contribute pictures of their child from when they were a baby until now. You would ask the parents a series of questions about the bride or grooms childhood, adolescence and adult life. Then you could take the pictures and arrange them in a slideshow presentation that you could narrate with information gleaned from your interviews. This type of toast is especially popular with the older generation in attendance at the wedding because many of them knew the bride or groom as children and will enjoy reminiscing about those times through the pictures and stories.

If the best man is linguistically inclined he may also wish to write a short poem or song about the couple. This poem or song could either be sweet and sentimental or funny and potentially embarrassing to the couple. Although the best man may be making the same points that he would in giving a traditional speech, the use of a poem or song to convey the sentiment makes it more original and amusing for the guests.

A video presentation is another unique way to make the best man’s toast. One way to do this is to arrange meetings with close friends and family members and ask them a series of questions about love and relationships and videotape their answers. You could then videotape yourself giving a short toast and introducing the other members on the tape. This is an excellent idea for the best man who is afraid that he will forget what he wants to say on the wedding day. The video allows him to practice his speech and record it over and over again until it is perfect.

Another original toast idea is the idea of memory boxes. The best man could talk to the parents of the bride and groom ahead of time and obtain a few objects from their pasts such a photos, childhood security blankets and special gifts from loved ones. The bet man would put each of these items into one of the boxes and leave the other one empty. When it comes time for the toast the best man could present the couple with the filled box. He would then open the box and explain the story behind each of the memory items. When he is done with the first box, he could present the couple with the second box and explain that this box is for the couple to fill up with keepsakes of the memories that they will share together.

There are a variety of toasting options available to the best man. Whether he chooses to speak from the heart with an unprepared speech or invest time prior to the wedding to put together an elaborate presentation, the toast is sure to be appreciated as long as the best man is speaking from his heart.

Print

Looking Beyond the Traditional Men’s Wedding band

It wasn’t too long ago that the selection of wedding rings for men in jewelry stores was limited to gold and platinum wedding bands. Nowadays, the selection of men’s wedding rings is just as varied as those for women. The reason behind the big switch is demand. More and more men are opting for more than a traditional wedding band. If you hadn’t considered more than a plain wedding band, the following information about what is now available for men may offer you an alternative.

Probably the most widespread change in the wedding band that you can choose is the type of metal. Gold and platinum are no longer the only choices you have for a wedding band. There is also Tungsten, two-toned gold, stainless steel, and titanium. A Tungsten wedding band is a good choice for a wedding band because of its durability and quality. A wedding band made of Tungsten won’t tarnish, is difficult to scratch, and has a natural shine. Tungsten does not contain an alloy metal so it probably won’t cause an allergic reaction.

Can’t decide between gold and platinum? A two-toned gold wedding band is the answer! A wedding band that features metals with opposite properties is appealing to men who are interested in a wedding band that looks good at both work and play. This type of wedding band is usually inexpensive. Stainless steel has made a come back in the jewelry industry. Like Tungsten, stainless steel is very durable. It makes a handsome wedding band for a man who wants a stylish wedding band without frill and an expensive price tag.

The best seller of men’s wedding jewelry is Titanium. The reason Titanium is so popular with men is style. The hammered Titanium wedding band is particularly popular with men because it has a rugged look. Men who opt not to wear a wedding band often do so because they consider wearing jewelry to be feminine. A Black titanium wedding band is also a big hit with men. Its color is definitely an attention getter, especially when combined with a diamond or other metal, such as gold.

With the new styles of wedding band available to men, bridal sets are becoming more popular. These sets are a great choice for couples that want to share in the same style of ring. Another reason a couple may choose to purchase a bridal set is because wedding rings are typically less expensive when purchased in a set. The only foreseeable problem is the couple having to choose a single style they both like.

Print

Irish Wedding Traditions

Many nationalities have their own wedding traditions. The people of Ireland have their own distinct traditions that make it easy to distinguish an Irish wedding from weddings of other cultures. The traditions include Claddagh rings, superstitions, a special toast, as well as kilts and bagpipes.

The Claddagh ring has a special meaning in a traditional Irish wedding. The Claddagh ring is a traditional ring that looks like two hands holding a heart that is adorned with a crown. Tradition holds that Claddagh rings be passed down from mother to daughter. As these rings are meant to be passed down for generations, it is not considered proper to buy a Claddagh ring for yourself. Yet another tradition involving the Claddagh ring relates to how it is worn. An engaged or married woman or man would wear the ring with the tips of the crown facing towards their fingertips. In this position the ring is considered to be turned inward and symbolizes that the heart of the person wearing the ring is taken. A man or woman who is not involved in a romantic relationship would wear the ring with the tips of the crown facing towards their wrist. This outward position of the ring symbolizes that the person wearing the ring is reaching out for companionship.

Traditional Irish weddings also adhere to several unusual superstitions in an attempt to ward off bad luck. A rain or overcast day might be cause for concern at a traditional Irish wedding. This is because one of the strange superstitions is that the sun must shine directly on the bride to ensure that the couple will be blessed with good luck. Birds also factor into some of the traditional Irish superstitions. Hearing a cuckoo bird or seeing three magpies are also considered to be signs of luck for the couple. Yet another final superstition relates to offering well wishes to the bride. At a traditional Irish wedding it is considered bad luck for a woman to be the first one to congratulate the bride and wish her well. For this reason a close friend or relative of the groom will also take it upon himself to ensure that he is the first to congratulate the bride.

A traditional Irish wedding usually concludes with a toast that has been recited for many years. At the end of the reception the guests will gather around the couple for the final toast. The couple will begin the toast by saying, “Friends and relatives, so fond and dear, ’tis our greatest pleasure to have you here. When many years this day has passed, fondest memories will always last. So we drink a cup of Irish mead and ask God’s blessing in your hour of need.” The guests then respond to the toast with the following answer: “On this special day, our wish to you, the goodness of the old, the best of the new. God bless you both who drink this mead, may it always fill your every need.” “Friends and relatives, so fond and dear, ’tis our greatest pleasure to have you here. When many years this day has passed, fondest memories will always last. So we drink a cup of Irish mead and ask God’s blessing in your hour of need.” The guests respond: “On this special day, our wish to you, the goodness of the old, the best of the new. God bless you both who drink this mead, may it always fill your every need.”

Of course, no traditional Irish wedding complete without the presence of bagpipes and kilts. It is customary for friends and family members to bring along their bagpipes and pipe the couple into the mass and into the reception. They may also continue to charm the guests with an assortment of bagpipe tunes suitable for dancing. Not only do friends and family members enjoy performing for the couple and the other guests but they also enjoy taking the opportunity to dress in traditional kilts for the occasion. The look and sound of the bagpipers creates the feel of a truly traditional Irish wedding.

A traditional Irish wedding is a festive occasion filled with good friends, food and music. In addition to these traditional elements the Irish people also have traditions regarding the Claddagh ring and standardized toasts that are used to wish the new couple well. Superstitions also play a role in a traditional Irish wedding. Many of the traditional superstitions relate to objects or occurrences that are thought to bring the couple good luck.

Print

Russian Wedding Traditions

Russia has a long history of wedding traditions. The traditional Russian wedding ceremony does not have many traditions and many couples opt for a simple civil service that is not widely attended by their friends and relatives. The wedding reception however is a very important part of Russian tradition. Perhaps the most distinguishing aspect of a traditional Russian wedding is that it lasts for at least two days.

Russian law does not recognize church weddings so couples wishing to marry must have a civil wedding ceremony. At the conclusion of this ceremony the couple is given bread and salt which represents health and prosperity. This civil ceremony is considered unimportant by family members and many of them do not attend. In the Russian culture the wedding reception is a two day extravaganza that is considered to be more important than the ceremony itself.

The first day of a Russian wedding ceremony is filled with a series of events that includes the civil ceremony, a tour of the city and the start of the reception. The wedding day begins with the bride and groom in separate locations each accompanied by their own friends and family members. The groom will arrive at the bride’s location well before the two of them need to arrive at the civil service. This is necessary because the bride’s friends and family members make it difficult for the groom to reach his bride. For example, if the bride lives on a high floor of an apartment complex, the groom will be detained by friends or family members at each floor and asked trivia type questions about his bride. If he answers incorrectly, he must pay cash to advance to the next step. Once he arrives at his bride’s side, the two of them travel by train, in separate cars, to the location of the civil service. Only their closest friends and family members accompany the bride and groom to this ceremony as it is not considered very important. It is viewed as merely a way to have the union recognized by the government.

Immediately after the civil ceremony the couple takes a tour of the city to visit memorials of those who have died. This tour is usually two to three hours long and during this time the couple honors those who were killed in wars by laying flowers at their memorials. The couple is usually only accompanied by the two witnesses to their wedding on this journey. Sometimes a few other close friends will come with the couple but family seldom partakes in this tour because they are busy making preparations for the reception.

After the tour of the city the couple arrives at the reception and this is where the true celebration begins. The reception always starts with a toast and usually the parents are the first to toast the bride and groom. The rest of the guests then offer their toast. Following the toast is the most prominent Russian wedding tradition. The guests drink wine after each toast and after they sip the guests will begin to shout, “Gor’ko” which means bitter. The couple then has to kiss in order to sweeten the wine. The guests will continue this tradition after each toast requiring the couple to kiss after each toast.

The rest of the first night is filled with dancing and another Russian tradition of playfully “kidnapping” the bride. The groom’s friends will take advantage of the chaos that ensues as all the guests start to dance and “kidnap” the bride. They will then demand the groom pay a ransom for her return. The bride’s friends also get in on the good natured fun by “stealing” the bride’s shoes. Again the groom has to pay a ransom before her shoes are returned. This first day of the reception continues on late into the night leaving the guests exhausted.

The second day of a traditional Russian wedding is usually held at the house where the couple will begin there lives together. This is a more relaxed day and although anyone from the first day is invited to attend, usually only the closest friends and family members attend this second day of festivities. Day two of a traditional Russian wedding usually begins in the late afternoon or evening. The guests all enjoy a meal together and after the meal comes another Russian tradition of having the bride clean the floor. The guests will litter the floor with currency and the bride has to “clean” the floor by picking up the money. The guests can continue to litter the floor with additional currency while the bride is “cleaning” and are particularly fond of coming to the festivities with a large amount of coins to make the bride’s job as difficult as possible. This tradition gives the guests the opportunity to make a contribution to the new couple.

Traditional Russian weddings are essentially two fun days of food, drink and friends. The ceremony itself is not viewed as the highlight of the wedding. The government will only recognize a marriage that is verified through a civil service and the church will not perform a church wedding unless a civil service has already been performed so couples often participate in both types of ceremonies separately. It is instead the reception that is the focal point.

Print

Italian Wedding Traditions

Couples who are of Italian descent may choose to incorporate a variety of Italian traditions into their wedding even if they have never even set foot on Italian soil. This is a fun way to honor your ancestors with a nostalgic glimpse into the past. The religious aspects, dances and food at a wedding may all hold traditional values.

The dominant religion in Italy is Roman Catholicism. Therefore a traditional Italian wedding would also be linked to a traditional Catholic wedding and would include a full Mass with the ceremony. Although, not all Italians are also Catholics and if you and your future spouse are not Catholic you can still have a traditional Italian reception to celebrate your marriage. Immediately after the wedding ceremony the couple may release a pair of white doves. These doves symbolize the love and affection that the couple hold for each other.

There are a few other small traditions that apply to the ceremony. One of these traditions is to adorn each entry way that the couple will pass through with elaborately tied ribbons. These ribbons are symbolic of the unity of the couple. It is also customary for the groom to carry a small piece of iron in his pocket during the wedding ceremony. This piece of metal is said to ward off evil spirits and ensure a happy future for the couple. The bride may also rip her veil slightly. This is said to bring good luck to the couple.

The reception that follows the wedding ceremony is where the majority of Italian traditions take place. It is customary for the guests to assemble in the reception room before the bride and groom arrive. You should arrange for your guests to be served alcoholic beverages during this time. The women are traditionally served sweet liquors while the men are served stronger drinks. It is important that these drinks be served before the couple arrives at the reception because tradition holds that the guests offer a toast to the bride and the groom the moment that they arrive at the reception.

There are a few traditional dances that are typically performed at traditional Italian weddings. The Tarantella is one example of these dances. There are several different stories on the origin of this dance but most of the stories revolve around a spider bite. In just about every version of the story, la tarantella was a dance that was performed either to counteract the venom of the spider or as an uncontrollable response to the venom. In modern times this dance is performed as a way of wishing the couple good luck in their future together. La Tarantella is a group, circle dance where the participants dance in a clockwise direction until the music speeds up and then they reverse directions. These tempo changes occur several times and each time the tempos speeds up the group changes direction again. This continues until it is impossible to keep up with the tempo of the music.

No authentic wedding would be complete without a scrumptious feast featuring several courses. A traditional Italian wedding reception begins with an antipasto course that features olives, pickled sweet peppers, mushrooms and cheeses. That is followed by many other courses that include pastas, meats, soups, salads and desserts that are each accompanied by free flowing wine. There are certain foods that have symbolic meanings. For example guests are usually presented with an odd number of almonds. The almonds represent the fact that marriage is often bittersweet. They are presented in odd numbers that have different traditional meanings. For example three almonds wish the couple luck with children while five almonds wish the couple monetary wealth.

Another Italian wedding tradition is to have the couple break a glass or vase at the conclusion of the reception. The Jewish faith has a similar tradition where the groom will break a wine glass at the conclusion of the ceremony but these traditions vary in their intentions and symbolism. Jewish couples break a glass as a symbol of human frailty and the hardship that their ancestors have endured because of their faith. An Italian couple, however, breaks a glass or vase for a completely different reason. According to Italian tradition the number of pieces that the glass breaks into represents the number of happy years that the couple will enjoy together.

It is fun for couples of Italian descent to incorporate traditional elements into their wedding. Even if the couple only has distant relatives that originated from Italy and have never even been to Italy, it is still acceptable to follow these traditions. Couples of other nationalities may also choose an Italian themed wedding just for the enjoyment of trying something different.

Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
radio frequencies from | Your Relations

BABY MONITOR: THE DAWN OF ELECTRONIC NANNIES

How would you expect your great, great grandma to react on the existence of baby monitors nowadays? In their time, the only baby monitor around is their active presence. The whole idea could infuriate them, but practically in the 21st century, almost half the century since mothers gained liberty in climbing a career path, all possibilities were laid accessible. Perhaps the technology and the inventors should receive better appreciation instead of being cynical.

Baby monitors are gadgets that serve to produce and amplify the condition of the infant in the crib while the parents are not at hand to see them. It does not mean leaving the baby alone in the house, but it has more use at night during sleep. They come in various brands and sophistication but all the way serving the purpose of keeping the child safe. The audio sounds that it produces are the breathing, heartbeat and vital responses to avoid the dangers of SIDS, known to be Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. SIDS occurs in a baby’s life at the age of 1 to 4 months.

Baby monitors like these are not only used at homes but also in hospitals. If it is in the hospital, then one could expect all the transmitters, antenna and connections plugged to the baby’s crib. For home use, it could come in different portable functions, but the opinions that go along with it could range from the option of hiring a nanny to the point that the mom must quit the job instead of depending on baby monitors.

The advantage of having baby monitors is its capability to detect intelligently more than what practical nannies can detect by intuition. This is much applicable for children with breathing problems and some mental retardation that prevents them to respond like normal babies do. Baby monitors come in radio frequencies from 46 to 49 MHz, which can be activated by batteries or regular current plugged in convenience outlets. These gadgets can either had transmissions located less than 10 feet from the crib for clearer monitoring.

The main disadvantage is it could interfere with wireless phone, other baby monitors and other gadgets that use radio frequency. Literally, the sounds emitted from other sources could be heard in the monitor. Later, the products increased to 900MHz to solve the problem, but still it has no guarantee to patch the problem.

Other fancy things baby monitors can do in some push buttons include: lullabyes to pacify the crying baby, talks, vibrations, capability to connect to emergency lines, heart listener, baby movement censors, video.

Culturally, the use of baby monitors is more common in the western countries where parents do not co-sleep with their children. Chances are the child sleeps in a separate room, with doors left ajar while parents plug a monitor as aid. In Asian countries, SIDS is not a common dilemma. Mothers culturally co-sleep with children plus they are not so required to take part actively in climbing careers have the full-time dedication to tend to the children. These are commonly in rural areas. In cities where life is fast-phased, there is no use getting the financial role of parents as an argumentative matter.

Truly we cannot avoid life changes that technology offer as gifts of advancement. Using gadgets to aid parents will not mean to diminish the way they give care and love.

Print

Options for Wedding music

The old saying is that, “music soothes the savage beast.” Music can also maintain the pleasant atmosphere of your wedding. Choosing wedding music is not always the easiest task in a wedding. You have to put some thought into the wedding music that will be played and how it will be played. Of course, budget concerns are also something to consider when making your wedding music decisions.

The tradition for wedding music is to hire a live band that will play during the wedding reception. Check your local area to see if there is a band available that is willing to play wedding music during your reception. If you are a member of a church that has a band, you might request their services during your reception. This may choose to be less expensive than hiring a local band. When you hire a band, be sure to discuss meals in addition to wedding music selections. Although the bride and groom are not traditionally responsible for feeding the band, it is something that a band may include in their list of requirements.

Hiring a DJ should be similar to hiring a music coordinator. The DJ is in charge of the music entertainment. Don’t take this position lightly. You need someone who is not only talented with wedding music selection, but someone who will be able to keep your guests entertained. For example, a good DJ will play music that everyone can enjoy. The music the DJ plays will serve as your wedding music. It is a good idea that you request to review the collection of wedding music the DJ intends to play. If you don’t know someone who can serve as your DJ, you may want to solicit the services of a local radio station DJ.

Another option to having people control your music is to use CDs of appropriate wedding music. This option is appropriate for the wedding and the reception. If the wedding ceremony is going to be held in a church, you will probably need your music approved. Be sure to take care of this as soon as possible. There are collections of wedding music that you can find in just about any store that sells music that are probably fairly inexpensive. You could also create your own CDs or have someone with a variety of music create the CD for you. With the prevalence of music-recording software, it’s easy to make your own wedding music CDs.

Print

A Creative Romantic Lives in You

Why is it that so many people believe that they don’t have time or take the initiative to be romantic? Maybe most people don’t believe that they are creative enough to be romantic. Everyone is creative! The definition of being creative is having the ability or power to create. The word create offers a much broader definition than most people accept when it comes to the process of being able to come up with something original or simply well thought out.

Gifts that are considered to be traditionally romantic like candy and flowers are wonderful, but sometimes you need something that goes one step further. If your spouse enjoys flowers, you don’t have to settle for roses because they can sometimes become unexciting after a while! Present him or her with something completely original such as a daisy or another flower where petals can be counted. Ask him or her to play the childhood game of ‘they love me, they love me not’ and watch them pluck the petals as they go. However, don’t allow for the possibility of him or her arriving at the ‘they love me not’. Count the petals before you present the flower to your spouse and trim it so that there is an odd number of petals for the right outcome!

Arts and crafts used to be a fun break from the monotony of the school day, but believe it or not, it will come in handy when it comes to creative romantic gestures. Instead of promising that you will love him or her forever, show them. Take a piece of paper, ribbon or other material you choose and write “I love you” on both sides from end to end. Twist the paper 180 degrees and connect both ends of the paper until you have mad what looks like the figure eight. Tape or glue to ends together. You can present your love with a symbol that shows them your love for them is an endless love.

Creativity comes in many different forms! Being creative can mean creating an atmosphere. If you want to plan the ultimate romantic evening but funds are low or you simply don’t want to have to leave the house, shut down the electricity and imitate a power outage (it’s up to you whether or not you tell him or her!). You won’t have any distractions or heat, so it is up to both of you to keep the other warm and entertain each other.

Maybe romance is on your mind, but he or she is going out of town. Did you know that people on airplanes are typically hopeless romantics? Any flight attendant would be more than happy to make sure that your spouse receives a special present after the flight has left the ground. Simply approach a crewmember after he or she boards the plane and they are usually more than happy to oblige a hopeless romantic like you! (You might want to make sure that the gift is unwrapped or keep it to a single rose due to heightened security.)

Creativity doesn’t have to come in the form of gifts every single time. Gestures like getting up and dancing with your spouse when a special song comes on the radio is quite creative and incredibly romantic! Whenever the mood strikes you, allow your creative juices to flow!

Print

10 Creative Ways to Propose

Marriage proposals made over a romantic dinner at an elegant restaurant can be very romantic but they are not necessarily creative. Many women dream about the day that the man of their dreams proposes to them and hope that the day will be absolutely perfect in every way imaginable. In a recent study the majority of married women reported that they believe that their spouse spent a significant amount of money on their wedding proposal but that the lack of originality in the proposal had left the women feeling disappointed.

One creative way to propose for a couple involved in a long distance relationship is to plan a surprise visit and set up a scavenger hunt. You could have a friend pick you up from the airport so that your girlfriend doesn’t know that you are coming to visit and have the friend give your girlfriend instructions for the scavenger hunt. You could hide a number of small surprises such as candy, flowers and a CD as the first few stops on the scavenger hunt and then hide at the final location poised to propose when your girlfriend completes the game.

An outdoor enthusiast might appreciate a creative proposal during a camping trip. It’s a good idea to plan a quiet trip for just you and your girlfriend at a picturesque location. You could hide the ring in your sleeping bag to use in a surprise proposal. When it’s time to go to sleep after a long day of hiking and fishing, you could complain that there must be a rock or something underneath you and then pull out the ring and make your proposal. This creative proposal also contains the element of surprise as a camping trip is not a usual proposal location.

Another creative proposal idea is to place an ad in a local newspaper. You could place an outrageous ad in a newspaper asking anyone who was willing to get married to give you a call and include a fictitious phone number. Then when you and your girlfriend are reading the paper together, you could point out the ad as a joke and while she is reading the ad, seize the opportunity to pull out the engagement ring and let her know that you would love to marry her.

Proposing at a sporting event is a creative way to propose to a sports fan. For this proposal idea you could either arrange to have your proposal broadcast over the public address system or displayed on the large screen. If you are really adventurous, you could also contact the team’s public relations department and try to make arrangements to make your proposal on the field at halftime. They might be willing to help you stage a scenario where you are either chosen to win a prize or participate in a contest and while you are on the field, they would hand over the microphone to allow you to make your proposal.

Another creative marriage proposal idea is to purchase a book of poems and leave the first few pages intact and carve a heart into the remaining pages and sew the engagement ring to the back of the book. You could suggest taking turns reading the poems on each page and plan to have your girlfriend turn the final complete page to reveal the heart and ring that were hidden inside. This proposal idea is not only creative but also incredibly romantic.

Having the DJ of your girlfriend’s favorite radio program ask her if she will marry you is another creative proposal idea. You will want to make sure that you are aware of the exact time that the DJ will be sending your message so that you are able to ensure that you and your girlfriend are listening together when he makes the announcement. You could also arrange to have the DJ play a song that has a special meaning for you as a couple so that you can enjoy a dance together after she accepts your creative proposal.

Another creative way to propose is to include all of your family and friends in the event by inviting them all to a surprise party for your girlfriend. To make this proposal work, you would either convince your girlfriend that you want to have a quiet dinner at home or at a restaurant with just the two of you. Once you arrive at the destination all of the guests will reveal themselves and while all eyes are on the two of you, you could take the opportunity to profess your love and propose.

Still another creative way to propose is to hide the ring in an unexpected location. For example you could pretend to have a clogged sink and while you are working to fix the clog, you could reach into the sink and pull out the engagement ring. When your girlfriend is nearby, you could seize the opportunity to pull out the ring you had hidden earlier and say something to the effect of, “No wonder the sink is clogged, I’ll have to find another place to store this ring, how about your finger?” This whimsical proposal is both light-hearted and creative.

A variation on the traditional proposal at an elegant restaurant could be to have the waiter bring out the ring with the bill. You could have a little good natured fun with your girlfriend by going out of your way to drop hints that you would be proposing over dinner. If you keep up the act, she will be expecting your proposal with each course. After dessert you could tell her that you have something very important to ask and as she eagerly awaits your proposal, you could ask an inconsequential question about something completely irrelevant to your relationship. She will probably be furious at this point but her anger won’t last as the waiter arrives with the bill and the engagement ring and you let her know how much she means to you.

Finally a creative proposal idea is for the woman to ask the man to marry her, instead of waiting for him to propose. Many women anxiously await the day that the man in their life will propose but why not add your own creative twist by proposing to him instead. The woman is free to propose in any way that she finds truly romantic and can ensure that the proposal is both creative and romantic and that it’s a moment that they both will remember for the rest of their lives.

A great marriage proposal doesn’t have to be expensive or extravagant. Many women are more likely to cherish the memories of a proposal that was inexpensive but truly creative. The creativity is what makes the proposal so memorable and what makes it a great story to tell their friends.

Print

A Little Goes a Long Way

Relationships are never always easy. It is normal to hit some bumps in the road or to even have long stretches where you and your partner have a hard time connecting. Couples who are lucky enough to seem to get along more often than not have probably discovered a little secret early on in their marriage. That secret is to show love and affection in little ways often- not always in big ways when things seem to be going badly or when an apology is in order!

Imagine stopping on the way home from work and picking wildflowers from alongside the road for your spouse. She may have had a difficult day on the job, the kids were trying her patience or you both simply seem to have lost your intimacy lately. If you were to walk in the door with a fist full of wildflowers you took the time to select just for her on the way home; you will have broken the surrounding atmosphere with love and consideration. You both have the opportunity to start fresh with that one, small yet powerful gesture.

If you are going out of town or simply feel like ‘ships passing in the night’ because of kids, commitments or work, find a sun catcher, charm or porcelain figure in the shape of a star or a shooting star. Wrap the trinket in a small gift box and fold a note on top of it that says, “Wish you were here” and place it in his or her travel bag or even in a briefcase or purse. When he or she finds it and knows that you are missing them and thought enough to share that sentiment, it will stir emotions that may not have been awakened in some time.

In order to change tedious or tired routines or to inspire intimacy, you might be surprised at how little effort is required. Tape a note on the television that says, “Wouldn’t you rather turn me on?” instead. If he or she is enjoying a good book, remove the bookmark and replace it with a note that says, “I bet you’ll never guess where I’ve hidden your bookmark.”

Remember the small things you used to do when you first got together that would make your heart flutter and put a twinkle in your eye? Do them again! When you go shopping, for a walk or you’re just sitting together watching TV, hold hands, link arms or put your arm around her. Softly whisper “Hey” into his or her ear and gaze lovingly into each other’s eyes. If he or she wants to know what you are doing, simply say that you are amazed at how much you love them.

These simple, small acts can really go far when it comes to sparking a little romance in your marriage. They can break the monotony of a relationship or help your partner to feel appreciated and loved. You can expect to feel the same in return!

Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
important numbers | Your Relations

Wedding Invitation Etiquette

With all the expenses typically associated with preparing for a wedding, there is the temptation to put less emphasis on certain aspects of the ceremony. Stationary often falls into this category. Invitations, thank you and note cards, and orders of service are examples of stationary that people choose to use for their ceremony. Of these, you don’t want to diminish the quality of wedding invitation that you use. Your wedding invitation is what people see first regarding your wedding. It sets the tone of what your guests can expect when they attend the wedding ceremony. A wedding invitation generally includes key features and there are some considerations to help you with your choice of wedding invitation style. You don’t have to spend a significant amount of money on a particular wedding invitation style, but there are some guidelines you can follow to make them a success.

Word Choice
What you say and how you say it is an important part of a wedding invitation. At the very least you want to include information that will inform you guests of the what, where, why, and when of the ceremony. The obvious information that should be included in a wedding invitation is the names of the bride and groom, as well as the date, time, and venue of the ceremony. The names of the individuals who are hosting the wedding ceremony (paying for it) should appear on the wedding invitation. There really isn’t one standard for how this information should appear on the wedding invitation, so you can use your best judgment or seek advice from a printer.

Getting Down to the Particulars
Numbers are important when preparing a wedding invitation. Knowing how many invitations to mail and when to mail them are important numbers for your wedding invitation. The general guidelines for sending out invitations to your wedding is six weeks to 12 months before the ceremony. If you are inviting guests from out-of-town you should allow an extended amount of time for the individual to receive the wedding invitation and to make arrangements to attend. Unless everyone who receives a wedding invitation will be invited to the reception, it is standard practice to include a separate card announcing the particulars of the reception with the wedding invitation of those you intend to invite to the reception. No matter how you plan, you will always need an extra wedding invitation. As a rule, it is a good idea to order at least 25 extra invitations.

Considering Style
When your guests receive their wedding invitation, they should receive more than a simple card with information on it. Add as much creative flair to your wedding invitation that you possibly can. Ideas for making a wedding invitation unique include adding color, accessories, and aromas. You can experiment with each of these elements when deciding on the style of wedding invitation to use or view samples from a printer, online catalog, or those within a stationary shop.

Print

Hiring a baby sitter

Most parents prefer to be hands on with their kids. Raising kids is a difficult job but still parents want to do it themselves because they feel like it is the only way to make sure that they can properly train their kids to grow up into ladies and gentlemen. However some parents have no choice because both of them have to work to fend for the family so either they leave their kids with other family members or friendly neighbors but then again leaving kids with other people can not go on for so long. This is when the idea of hiring a baby sitter becomes an option but a baby sitter is a stranger so careful thought should be given by the family about this decision from the time they say yes to the idea to the choosing of the baby sitter.

There are certain things that should be considered when choosing a baby sitter. First and foremost, the baby sitter should be credible meaning that he or she should have a good record with past employers. Second is that there should be certain characteristics present in the baby sitter like he or she should have at least a general knowledge of how to run a household including operating machines especially the complex ones present in the house and of course he or she should be patient when it comes to dealing with the kids because that is really the bulk of his or her work – taking care of the kids.

It is also advisable to ask around people who have past experiences with baby sitters so that you can have an idea how to set your criteria and how to actually find and eventually hire someone that will fit into the criteria you set. After the initial research you are now ready to do interviews for possible prospects. During the interview, you should not only concentrate on the resume or the answers but you should more importantly watch out for the body language because they tell so much. Ask routine questions but also come up with questions that will make you get to know more about the morals or the personality of the one applying.

After finally choosing a baby sitter make sure that you do some advance preparations like giving the baby sitter a tour of the places in the house where he or she will be working, machines he or she will be operating, list of numbers to call in case of emergencies and talk to him or her about any special instructions you might want to give. Also, go through with the family policies with him or her like no spanking or no cursing. These are simple things but make it clear so that you will not have any future problems.

Hiring a baby sitter will make parents focus on their jobs but during the first days of the baby sitter one of the parents should watch how the baby sitter is during active duty even for just a few hours. This is sort of transition time and it is also a way of still being involved with your kids despite the fact that you already have a baby sitter. There are many good sitters around and hopefully you will find the right one for your family.

Print

Italian Wedding Traditions

Couples who are of Italian descent may choose to incorporate a variety of Italian traditions into their wedding even if they have never even set foot on Italian soil. This is a fun way to honor your ancestors with a nostalgic glimpse into the past. The religious aspects, dances and food at a wedding may all hold traditional values.

The dominant religion in Italy is Roman Catholicism. Therefore a traditional Italian wedding would also be linked to a traditional Catholic wedding and would include a full Mass with the ceremony. Although, not all Italians are also Catholics and if you and your future spouse are not Catholic you can still have a traditional Italian reception to celebrate your marriage. Immediately after the wedding ceremony the couple may release a pair of white doves. These doves symbolize the love and affection that the couple hold for each other.

There are a few other small traditions that apply to the ceremony. One of these traditions is to adorn each entry way that the couple will pass through with elaborately tied ribbons. These ribbons are symbolic of the unity of the couple. It is also customary for the groom to carry a small piece of iron in his pocket during the wedding ceremony. This piece of metal is said to ward off evil spirits and ensure a happy future for the couple. The bride may also rip her veil slightly. This is said to bring good luck to the couple.

The reception that follows the wedding ceremony is where the majority of Italian traditions take place. It is customary for the guests to assemble in the reception room before the bride and groom arrive. You should arrange for your guests to be served alcoholic beverages during this time. The women are traditionally served sweet liquors while the men are served stronger drinks. It is important that these drinks be served before the couple arrives at the reception because tradition holds that the guests offer a toast to the bride and the groom the moment that they arrive at the reception.

There are a few traditional dances that are typically performed at traditional Italian weddings. The Tarantella is one example of these dances. There are several different stories on the origin of this dance but most of the stories revolve around a spider bite. In just about every version of the story, la tarantella was a dance that was performed either to counteract the venom of the spider or as an uncontrollable response to the venom. In modern times this dance is performed as a way of wishing the couple good luck in their future together. La Tarantella is a group, circle dance where the participants dance in a clockwise direction until the music speeds up and then they reverse directions. These tempo changes occur several times and each time the tempos speeds up the group changes direction again. This continues until it is impossible to keep up with the tempo of the music.

No authentic wedding would be complete without a scrumptious feast featuring several courses. A traditional Italian wedding reception begins with an antipasto course that features olives, pickled sweet peppers, mushrooms and cheeses. That is followed by many other courses that include pastas, meats, soups, salads and desserts that are each accompanied by free flowing wine. There are certain foods that have symbolic meanings. For example guests are usually presented with an odd number of almonds. The almonds represent the fact that marriage is often bittersweet. They are presented in odd numbers that have different traditional meanings. For example three almonds wish the couple luck with children while five almonds wish the couple monetary wealth.

Another Italian wedding tradition is to have the couple break a glass or vase at the conclusion of the reception. The Jewish faith has a similar tradition where the groom will break a wine glass at the conclusion of the ceremony but these traditions vary in their intentions and symbolism. Jewish couples break a glass as a symbol of human frailty and the hardship that their ancestors have endured because of their faith. An Italian couple, however, breaks a glass or vase for a completely different reason. According to Italian tradition the number of pieces that the glass breaks into represents the number of happy years that the couple will enjoy together.

It is fun for couples of Italian descent to incorporate traditional elements into their wedding. Even if the couple only has distant relatives that originated from Italy and have never even been to Italy, it is still acceptable to follow these traditions. Couples of other nationalities may also choose an Italian themed wedding just for the enjoyment of trying something different.

Print

10 Exciting Bridal Shower Game Ideas

The bridal shower is an opportunity for the women in the future bride’s life to honor her with a simple luncheon or get together filled with good food, fun and games. Many bridal showers feature a series of games that are not only a great deal of fun but also allow a bonding opportunity for all of the women at the party and sometimes serve the purpose of completing a task for the bride to be.

A game that encourages the participants to get to know each other is always a fun game with which to start the party. One game you can play is known as the Name Tag Game which encourages guest to mingle with the other guests. In this game, the hostess writes the name of each of the guests along with a word related to weddings such as veil, favors, groom, etc on a name tag. The rules of the game are that you are not allowed to say the word on your name tag or else you lose your name tag to the person who got you to say the word. If you acquire one or more additional name tags you are tasked with not saying any of the words on either your name tag or any of the other tags. If you say the word on your tag, you have to relinquish it to the person who got you to say the word and if you say the word on one of the other tags, you also have to give that person the tag plus you have to introduce them to the person from whom you had acquired the tag. There is usually a pre-determined time limit for this game and the person with the most tags when time runs out is the winner.

The Purse Game is another popular bridal shower idea. This is a simple game where the hostess draws up a list of items likely to appear in a woman’s purse and assigns a point value to each item ranging from 1-5 depending on how unusual the item is. For example car keys might be a 1 on the scale, a mirror a 3 and an eye lash curler a 5. The hostess might also choose to allow 10 bonus points for the woman who can produce the most outrageous item from her purse. The woman with the most points wins the game. Another variation of this game is to have a list of items and call out the items one at a time. The first woman to find each item and hand it to the person judging the game wins one point. After the entire list has been completed, the woman with the most points is proclaimed the winner.

Another common bridal shower game is the Television Couple Game. In this game the hostess will read out the first names of a television couple and the guests try to guess the last name of the couple. A few examples clues along with the answers are George and Jane – Jetson, Al and Peg – Bundy, Ward and June – Cleaver. One point could be awarded for each correct answer or a point system could be established to award more points to more obscure references. This game is also sometimes called the Famous Couple Game and includes references to celebrities or political figures and their real spouses such as Bill and Hillary – Clinton.

Bridal Shower Bingo is another simple bridal shower game. This game is played just like regular bingo except that instead of using letters and numbers for the spaces, each space is filled with a word or words that relate to weddings, love or marriage such as wedding dress, favors, eternal, true, rings, etc. The host makes up the bingo cards ahead of time and puts a piece of paper with each word used on the cards into a large bowl. During the game, the hostess will draw out a word and read it allowed and each participant will mark that square on their card. The first person to complete an entire row, column or diagonal wins the game.

One bridal shower game that can be a real benefit to the bride to be is a simple drawing. The hostess may purchase a few inexpensive gifts for the drawing and ask each participant to fill out an envelope with their name and address to enter the drawing. The hostess then picks out a name for each prize. This is a fun game because it offers the participants a chance to win a prize plus it really helps out the guest of honor because she can use the envelopes to send out her thank you cards after the party.

The Who Am I Game is another bridal shower game that encourages guests to interact with each other. In this game, the host prints out pictures of characters from romantic books or movies and tapes one character to the back of each guests so that other guests can see the picture but the person wearing the picture cannot. The point of the game is to ask other guests questions where the answer is either yes or no to try to determine who is on the picture on your back. At the end of the party, each guest takes a guess at who is depicted in the photo on their back.

The Wedding Jumble is another fun bridal shower game. For this game the hostess will prepare a list of words related to a wedding day such as toast, limousine, receptions, and vows. Next the hostess will scramble each word so that the letters are out of order and provide each guest with a copy of the scrambled words. The guest will be given a set amount of time to unscramble the words and the person who unscrambles the most words wins. If more than one person gets all of the words correct then the person who did so in the fastest time is the winner.

The Wedding Day Obstacle Course is another game that can really help out the bride. In this amusing game each guest is timed individually on how fast they can complete a series of tasks such as wrapping a wedding favor, addressing envelopes, filling out a place card, assembling a centerpiece, or whatever other projects the bride has in progress that can be incorporated into the game. Not only is this a game that is both fun to watch and participate in but it also helps the bride to complete some of the tasks on her list.

The Bridal Shower Memory Game is also very popular. The typical way to play this game is to have a tray filled with various household items. Bring out the tray and allow the guests to study the items for a few minutes and then take the tray away and ask questions about the items such as, where the spoon was and what color was the spatula. This game could also be modified to have one of the guests bring the tray out and then leave the room to take the tray away. You could then catch the guests by surprise by asking questions about the person who carried the tray such as what color shirt were they wearing or on which finger was she wearing a ring instead of asking questions about the contents of the tray.

The Price is Right Game can also be a great deal of fun at bridal showers and can serve to benefit the bride as well. For this game the hostess will purchase about 10 different items that will be useful for the couple such as towels, soap dispensers, household cleaners, etc. and have the guests try to guess the price of either all the items combined or each item individually. This is not only a fun game but the bride also gets to keep the items which makes it useful for her.

All of these games are a lot of fun to play at a bridal shower and they encourage the guests to get to know each other in a casual atmosphere. Some of these games even serve the purpose of helping to complete some of the bride’s last minute projects. The fun of these games is that they help people to get to know each other better which is helpful especially if the bride and grooms’ families don’t know each other well.

Print

10 Great Places to Meet New Women

There are a lot of great women out there just waiting to meet the man of their dreams but finding these available women can take a little creativity. Sure there are plenty of single women at bars and nightclubs but the competition is also tough with many men also trying to meet women and women are usually on guard at these locations so getting through their defenses can be difficult. Instead of battling other men for a woman’s affection at a bar, try meeting women in new locations. Specifically locations that sport a high female to male ration will enhance your chances of meeting new women.

A woman’s clothing store is a great place to meet new women. Not only is this location filled with women but it is also almost completely devoid of other men. Many men avoid a woman’s clothing store like the plague so if you are brave enough to venture inside you will have an assortment of women to choose from. You can start a conversation by asking a woman for advice for a gift for your sister or by complimenting her on her purchases.

The gym can also be another great place to meet new women. While you may already spend hours a day pumping iron in the weight room try spending some time on a cardio machine or drop in on an aerobics or yoga class. These activities are typically dominated by women so engaging in these activities increases your chance of meeting women while at the gym.

Another great place to meet new women is in an adult continuing education class. Many community colleges offer night classes on a variety of subjects. Try signing up for a class or two and you may find that you meet a variety of new women. The key to choosing a class is to not only choose a class that sounds interesting but to also choose a class that is likely to consist of mostly women such as cooking classes or pottery classes.

The Internet is always an option for meeting women. You can try placing a personals ad online or join a dating service to read profiles of available men. There are so many personals sites available that it would almost be impossible not to find a suitable match. Just be sure to exercise caution and not give out your contact information or agree to meet anyone in a secluded location.

Hobby and craft stores are also excellent places to meet new women. Many women enjoy activities in arts and craft and often frequent these types of stores to purchase items for craft projects. More importantly though this is a hobby that does not attract many men so you will most likely be one of only a few men in the store.

Tanning spas or salons can be great places to meet new women. Again, these locations aren’t frequented by men so you are most likely to be one of the only men present. If you are attracted to women who put a lot of effort into their appearance the salon is definitely the place to go. Here you will find women who are committed to their appearance and who will appreciate you for your ability to understand that a manicure is just as important to men as it is to women.

If you are in search of a woman with interests similar to yours, a bookstore might just be the place for you. Try visiting a bookstore and only searching sections of the bookstore that interest you. Forget about attempting to determine what section might attract the most women and stick to the sections that hold your interests. You might be pleasantly surprised to meet a new woman who shares your passion for restoring old cars.

Sporting events can also be a great place to meet women who either share your love of sports or are in search of men themselves. You may attend a baseball game and wind up meeting a woman who shares your love of sports or you may at least meet a woman who is trying to meet a man. Sporting events are typically well attended by men so it’s possible that the women you meet at a sporting event are trying to put the odds in their favor and use this opportunity to meet men.

Another great place to meet new women is the theater. Women are typically drawn to the arts and if you begin attending local theater productions you may find the opportunity to meet a variety of new women. Not many men take in plays or operas on their own so doing so will help you to stand out from the crowd and single women are more likely to notice you.

Finally a grocery story is a great place to meet new women. Women make up the larger percentage of grocery shoppers so as one of only few men the odds will be in your favor. Also, women typically are experienced shoppers and you can take this opportunity to ask for their assistance in picking out produce or choosing a pasta sauce. Women will be flattered by you asking their advice and may be open to inviting you to their place for a home cooked meal.

While bars and nightclubs are certainly full of available women the likelihood of meeting a woman at these locations is slim to none. Although many women frequent nightclubs and bars in the hopes of meeting a man, these are also locations where women feel vulnerable and are likely to have their defenses up making them unapproachable. Try frequenting other locations and you may have an easier time meeting available women with interests similar to your own.

Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.
friendly neighbors | Your Relations

Hiring a baby sitter

Most parents prefer to be hands on with their kids. Raising kids is a difficult job but still parents want to do it themselves because they feel like it is the only way to make sure that they can properly train their kids to grow up into ladies and gentlemen. However some parents have no choice because both of them have to work to fend for the family so either they leave their kids with other family members or friendly neighbors but then again leaving kids with other people can not go on for so long. This is when the idea of hiring a baby sitter becomes an option but a baby sitter is a stranger so careful thought should be given by the family about this decision from the time they say yes to the idea to the choosing of the baby sitter.

There are certain things that should be considered when choosing a baby sitter. First and foremost, the baby sitter should be credible meaning that he or she should have a good record with past employers. Second is that there should be certain characteristics present in the baby sitter like he or she should have at least a general knowledge of how to run a household including operating machines especially the complex ones present in the house and of course he or she should be patient when it comes to dealing with the kids because that is really the bulk of his or her work – taking care of the kids.

It is also advisable to ask around people who have past experiences with baby sitters so that you can have an idea how to set your criteria and how to actually find and eventually hire someone that will fit into the criteria you set. After the initial research you are now ready to do interviews for possible prospects. During the interview, you should not only concentrate on the resume or the answers but you should more importantly watch out for the body language because they tell so much. Ask routine questions but also come up with questions that will make you get to know more about the morals or the personality of the one applying.

After finally choosing a baby sitter make sure that you do some advance preparations like giving the baby sitter a tour of the places in the house where he or she will be working, machines he or she will be operating, list of numbers to call in case of emergencies and talk to him or her about any special instructions you might want to give. Also, go through with the family policies with him or her like no spanking or no cursing. These are simple things but make it clear so that you will not have any future problems.

Hiring a baby sitter will make parents focus on their jobs but during the first days of the baby sitter one of the parents should watch how the baby sitter is during active duty even for just a few hours. This is sort of transition time and it is also a way of still being involved with your kids despite the fact that you already have a baby sitter. There are many good sitters around and hopefully you will find the right one for your family.

Print

10 Ways to Meet New People Without Even Trying

Meeting new people doesn’t have to involve a conscious effort. Just participating in activities you enjoy or running daily errands can lead to meeting new people without even trying. Of course, if your favorite activity is watching television it is unlikely that this will lead you to meeting new people unless you watch television in a public place instead of your home. Anytime you are out in public you are bound to meet new people without even trying.

A weekly grocery shopping trip can lead to meeting new people without even trying. Even this mundane chore gives you the opportunity to meet new people. Even if you shop in the middle of the night you are likely to not be the only person in the store and can wind up meeting someone new. You may be the only customer in the store but surely there will be store employees present. The cashier may strike up a casual relationship while they are ringing up your order and this could lead to the effortless start of a relationship with someone new.

Another errand that may result in you meeting new people without even trying is taking a trip to a bank. You will most likely encounter long lines and a significant wait. Rather than keeping to yourself, speak to those around you and you may find yourself meeting new people without even trying. While many people may be annoyed by the long lines, many others will be thankful for your starting a conversation because it offers them a distraction and a way to pass the time.

Participating in group exercise classes at a gym can also help you meet new people without trying. You are unlikely to meet someone new if you put on your headphones and hop onto an individual cardio machine but if you join a group class you will probably end up meeting some new people without even trying. The class automatically gives you something in common and if you can’t find anything else to talk about, griping about the intensity of the class is always a good ice breaker.

Those with children can find themselves meeting new people all the time without even trying. Children are incredibly social and often befriend most if not all of the kids in your neighborhood. While you may have not yet met all the neighbors you may find that your child has. If they have been making friends with other kids in the neighborhood, invite some of the other parents and children over for a play group and you will have the opportunity to meet the other adults while the kids play.

If your child is into sports, you can consider coaching a team that they are a member of in order to meet new people. The parents of the other kids will most likely attend games and practices and as the coach you will get the chance to meet all the parents at these games and practices. While your focus will be on the kids, the natural level of parental involvement will result in you meeting new people without really trying.

Taking a job where you interact with people such as customer service or retail is another way to meet people without even trying. Your job will put you in contact with many different people each day and each new person gives you the opportunity to strike up a conversation that may blossom into a relationship.

Attending religious services is another way to meet new people without even trying. At the start of many religious services the attendees are invited to greet those sitting around them. Most people simply offer a friendly hello but you are certainly welcome to introduce yourself and offer some basic information about yourself. If your neighbor responds affirmatively and offers additional information you can take this as an indication that they may be willing to begin a relationship. You may wait until the conclusion of the service and then ask the person if they would like to continue the conversation you started over a cup of coffee.

Still another way to meet new people without even trying is to volunteer for a charitable cause that you support. Your volunteer effort will put you in contact with like minded individuals who share your passion for the cause. As anyone who has ever volunteered can attest, it is virtually impossible to not be pulled into many aspects of the volunteer effort. As you become more involved you will likely end up serving on different committees and meeting new people without even trying.

Joining a club is another way to meet people without even trying. If you enjoy biking, try joining a club that meets for weekly cycling rides. There may be regulars on these rides and getting involved will lead to you meeting these people. Additionally there will probably be at least a few new people every week so you will be meeting new people just about every week.

If you take a class related to one of your interests, you may find yourself meeting new people who share your interest without even trying. A classroom setting gives students a chance to mingle before and after class and sometimes to interact during class. You will already have a common interest so use the class to form a bond with other members of the class. Either commiserating about the difficulty level of the class or raving about the interesting aspects of the class are both adequate ways to meet the other class members without trying.

Just going about your everyday activities may result in you meeting new people without even trying. Most of the activities, including errands that you normally engage in are wonderful opportunities for meeting new people. The key though is to be approachable or you may wind up missing these opportunities. Sometimes, all it may take is a hello to get a conversation started and sometimes you may need to dig a little deeper and ask some thought provoking questions of yourself and the other person to really form a relationship.

Print

Dress them up with the best baby clothes

Babies are bundles of joy so it is not surprising why everyone from the nuclear to immediate family gets all excited over the prospect of raising the newest addition to the family. For some, even the neighbors, who have become like family, share in all the anticipation. There is still nothing though that can match the enthusiasm of the parents of the child but most especially of the mother to be.

There are so many preparations to be made and even if the mother to be feels uneasy or a bit uncomfortable because of the additional weight she is carrying in her womb she is still ready to be up and about when it comes to baby preparations. And one of the most exciting parts of baby preparations is buying tons of baby clothes.

It is proven that baby clothes are one of the tops sellers in department stores and malls in any part of the world. This is the reason why big clothing companies decide to have their own line of baby clothes. More than this, there are also the brands that specialize in just baby clothes and the stores of these brands are just as big and saleable as that of the clothing brands for kids and adults. There are also known designer baby clothes and we usually hear these brands worn by celebrity kids especially those celebrities that are fashion conscious themselves. There is Anne Geddes in the United States of America and Tutti Bella for the Europeans. These brands became big by only selling baby stuff but primarily their line of baby clothes are the best in the industry.

One might argue that babies are not choosy about clothes in fact they are too young to care about fashion but precisely that is why baby clothes are a hit because the parents who want only the best for their babies are the one deciding. Another thing that can be raised is that why buy expensive clothes when in fact babies outgrow these clothes so fast but then again parents’ pride in their kids during the baby stage rests not on how intelligent or talented their kids are but rather on how cute their babies are so they have to make sure that their baby clothes highlight the best physical attributes of their little ones.

There are many kinds of baby clothes but parents need not buy all the kinds of baby clothes available in the market. We will run down the baby clothes that will be of most use to babies. First there are baby clothes based on gender. The usual baby clothes for boys are colored blue and for the girl baby clothes pink but more and more parents are now being open to buying unisex baby clothes which is really a good idea. Unisex baby clothes will send the message that there are no limitations to being a boy or being a girl.

Babies should always have a set of playwear and sleepwear because playing and sleeping are two of babies’ favorite activities. The key to choosing baby clothes for playing and sleeping is that clothes should be comfortable but of course there should also be style because there is nothing wrong with teaching babies the best way to dress up. As they say it is better to start them young.

Print

10 Great “No Reason” Gifts for Under $10

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s the thought that counts,” and this is especially true when giving a gift in a relationship. Simple gifts given to a loved one, don’t have to be for any reason other than to let them know that you care and are thinking of them and these gifts don’t have to be expensive. With a little creativeness you can give your loved one a gift that shows how much you love them and value your relationship for under $10.

The key to giving inexpensive gifts is to make sure they are something that the person you are giving the gift to will really cherish and appreciate. To give a really great inexpensive gift you have to think beyond the generic gifts of perfumed soaps and lotions for women and ties and socks for men. In giving inexpensive gifts try to personalize the gift to reflect the personality or hobbies of the recipient of the gift.

One inexpensive gift idea for a person who enjoys cooking is a specialty cookbook such as a dessert or ethnic cookbook. Interesting cook books can often be found in the discount section of book stores for less than $10. For an additional twist try making one of the dishes in the cookbook yourself and serving it when you present the gift to your loved one. Your loved one will appreciate the gesture and enjoy sharing the dish with you and will remember that moment fondly when using the cookbook.

For a sentimental soul, give a gift of personal photos arranged in a photo album in a unique way. Photo albums can be found for just a few dollars in convenience stores and you can use existing photos to fill the pages. The key to this gift is to present the photos in an original way. Try creating a photo album with a theme such as one that documents your relationship from courtship to your current stage or one that highlights the trips you have taken together.

The runner in your life will appreciate an inexpensive stopwatch or pedometer. While these gadgets can get pricey you can still find models that perform the basic functions for under $10. This gift lets you know that you are thinking of them and that you understand their hobby. They will appreciate your interest in their activities. You can even include a note letting them know you would love to join them for a run one day.

Another inexpensive gift idea is a basket filled with homemade cookies, breads or other goodies. If you know that your sweetheart has a sweet tooth, invest a few hours of your time to bake up some tasty treats for your loved one just to let them know you are thinking of them. They will not only enjoy the treat you have prepared but will also appreciate the effort that went into the gift. If the person you are baking the goodies for is on a special diet, be sure to incorporate their dietary needs into your recipe.

A homemade coupon book is always a welcomed gift and can certainly be made for under $10. Create coupons on your computer or by hand for services that you know your loved one will enjoy and include a small gift to go with the theme of the coupon book. For example the man in a relationship where the couple has children could give the woman a bottle of nail polish along with coupons offering his services as a babysitter while she goes out for a manicure with a friend. She will appreciate that you are sending her out to be pampered while you get a chance to enjoy some time with the kids. In giving this gift try to think of something your partner will appreciate but won’t splurge on for themselves.

Search the discount DVD bins for ones that are less than $10. Believe it or not, they are available and you just might find one that would make a great gift for someone you love. Inexpensive DVDs are often less mainstream and you could use that originality to try something new. If your partner is always trying to get you to go dancing but you keep refusing, you might find an instructional video on flamenco dancing or square dancing. Invite your loved one over and try following the video together.

Flowers don’t have to cost a fortune. You may spend hundreds on red roses for Valentine’s Day but for everyday occasions or for no reason at all, you could stop by your local supermarket and pick up a bouquet of colorful wild flowers from their floral department. Ditch the cellophane wrapper that the flowers come in and arrange them in a vase yourself or tie them with a pretty ribbon. Pre-arranged bouquets such as these are often available for under $10.

A CD filled with songs that your loved one enjoys or that have special meaning for you as a couple makes a wonderful and inexpensive gift. For under $10 you could easily use your computer to assemble a CD of meaningful songs. You could even create a CD cover that conveys the message you want to send with the CD.

Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy a trip to a local National Park to hike, observe wildlife and enjoy the outdoors so surprise your partner with a day trip to the park. Entry fees for many National Parks are under $10 and you and your loved one will have the opportunity to spend quality time together. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day enjoying nature and each others company.

If your loved one enjoys working out, a jump rope is a gift that you can give them for less than $10. This inexpensive gift will not only remind them of their childhood but also demonstrate that you understand them and realize that fitness is important in their life. An even better idea is to buy one for yourself as well and challenge your loved one to a friendly competition.

Gift giving doesn’t have to be expensive and doesn’t have to be for a specific occasion. Surprise your partner with well thought out gifts that reflect their interests. With a little creativity you can give your loved one a gift that shows how well you know them and they are in your thoughts every day and you don’t have to spend more than $10 to do so.

Print
Rodney’s 404 Handler Plugin plugged in.