Thursday, November 13, 2014

Benefits of Volunteering

Volunteering brings about many benefits not only to those being helped but also to the volunteer. I have been involved in volunteer positions consistently through out the years serving in a number of different capacities. Most of the volunteer opportunities that I have served at in the past have been through church. Recently I decided I’d like to give more of my time and help people in the community. I now volunteer one morning a week at a food bank in my area. I find it a different and enriching experience each time I go!

Some of the benefits of volunteering are:

- the connections you make with other individuals, meeting people from all different walks of life and expanding your network!

- volunteering gives you a greater sense of community and helps you really see how blessed you are

- as you volunteer, you meet new people and develop better social skills as well as increasing your self-confidence and self esteem

- helping those in need gives you a better attitude all around which carries over to your everyday life, motivation is good!

- if your volunteer position involves lifting, sorting, a lot of moving around you’ll also benefit physically from it as well, (not so much sitting at the computer or on your couch)

- develop new skills or discover something you are good at and enjoy doing

- volunteering can also benefit your career as you grow and utilize skills that you use. Perhaps you problem solve, are great at organization or a super team player these will all benefit you in the long run

So I hope this sheds a little light on volunteering and spurs you on to volunteer in your community. Helping others always brings blessings and makes you feel good!  Especially during the holiday season when people feel extra pressure to spend more money. Many folks are just trying to feed their families and buy the necessities of life. A little help can go a long way to bring some cheer to a family in need!

Starfish and Ocean Change of Address Square Sticker
Starfish and Ocean Change of Address Sticker
  
Smiling Snowman Christmas Ornaments
Smiling Snowman Christmas Ornaments
  
Turquoise Blossoms Small Gift Bag
Turquoise Blossoms Gift Bag
  
Tall Castles and Buildings Silhouettes Nite Lites
Tall Castles and Buildings Silhouettes Nite Lites
View another
 
  Cozy House Christmas Greetings 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
Cozy House Christmas Greetings 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
 

 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Preparing for the Busy Shopping Season

You’ve probably heard it said, don’t miss the window of opportunity! if you’re just working steady but haven’t started getting your marketing strategy together for the busy holiday season  you just might miss the boat! I’m sure you know that the stores in the malls are already starting to pull out there seasonal and promotional items, holiday and Christmas displays are already popping up in many stores. Big box stores already have Christmas trees and many holiday themed items on their shelves. When people see these it starts the ball rolling and many purchase gifts earlier than expected.  Personally I feel it is way to early for me to see Christmas items in the stores but as an online small business owner I understand that one has to get on board and be preparing our stores and websites for those early shoppers. People are starting their shopping earlier and earlier every year.  Research shows more and more people are shopping online and this is a trend that surely will only increase with the convenience of shopping from the comfort of one’s home! 

Have a plan, this is so important here. Take a look at your inventory and assess what you need to bring in to your store. What are the trends and items that will attract customers to your store front. What will be your big holiday sellers this year? Is there something particular that you want to feature? With millions of online businesses the competition is fierce and just thinking that the customers will come and buy from you without you putting in some big marketing efforts is pretty silly.

If you had your online store last year, review what items sold well for you and what items didn’t move at all. Decide on what new items to add to your inventory and which ones to promote. Use all available social media platforms that you are active in. Just do it subtly, nobody wants to just see a big push of your items, add something of value when you can. Perhaps offer a sale coupon or a contest.

When using Twitter to market your products remember to include appropriate hash tags, like #holidayspecials, #holidaydeals, #blackfriday, etc. This will help when people are searching for shopping deals. If you use Pinterest regularly be sure to create holiday boards that feature your products. Create unique boards like Christmas decor, holiday t-shirts, Christmas kitchen accessories, you get the idea. Also include prices, Pinterest lets you add this! Well I hope this has given you some incentive to get going on your holiday marketing strategy! Don’t leave it too late or you seriously might miss your window of opportunity. The shopper’s will buy elsewhere and you don’t want to miss out on the sales!

Juggling Snowmen Round Pouf
Juggling Snowmen Round Pouf
 
Weight Lifting Snowman Small Christmas Stocking
Weight Lifting Snowman Small Christmas Stocking
 
All is Calm, All is Bright Gold Plated Banner Ornament
All is Calm, All is Bright Gold Plated Banner Ornament
 
Christmas Decorations 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
Christmas Decorations 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
 
Pretty Packages Stickers
Pretty Packages Sticker Gift Labels
 
Smiley Snowman in a Pink Hat Tag For Bags
Smiley Snowman Luggage Tag For Bags
 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Fall is Upon Us

The nights are getting cooler, the sun is going down earlier and earlier and it’s definitely getting darker too!  A sure sign that we are sliding into the fall months. I like to think of fall as a time of new beginnings. One reason would be the start of a new school year for many, whether it is elementary, high school or University.

Another reason is because this is the time the leaves begin to change to brilliant colors of orange, red and yellow and nature is so beautiful and appealing during this season. Going for interesting hikes and walks with my husband in the cooler temperatures and crisp air is one of my favourite weekend things to do in early fall.

September can also be a time of rethinking routines and goal setting for many. Perhaps reading this will inspire you to sign up for a new class, try a new hiking trail, change up your routine at the gym, start that business you’ve been thinking about, whatever it is I hope you do something new and see great progress this month.

I’ve been working hard on my websites, there is always so much to do with designing, marketing and finding new ways to get my designs and sites seen.  Stop by my store or visit one of my websites, you can find them in the side bar of my blog. You’ll find lots of new items and ideas! 

Zoo Animals with Vines Pillow
Zoo Animals Pillow
 
Love Seashell Design Walnut Cribbage Board
Love Seashell Design Walnut Cribbage Board
 
Cartoon Dog with Paw Prints Wrapping Paper
Cartoon Dog with Paw Prints Wrapping Paper
 
Cartoon Dog Birthday Party Invitation
Cartoon Dog Birthday Party Invitation
 
Dental Design Tooth and Brush Luggage Tags
Dental Design Tooth and Brush Luggage Tag
 
Green Plaid with Chocolate Brown Business Card Template
Green Plaid with Chocolate Brown Business Card Template
 

Friday, August 1, 2014

Bucket List– 7 Places You’ll Want to Travel

Perhaps you’ve had a travel adventure this summer or are still preparing for one. My husband and I have just started travelling and exploring different countries and cultures over the last 5 years or so and once you start it’s hard to stop. There is always another place you want to see, another piece of history to learn about, another country to explore.

Here are some recommended places to put on your bucket list! Some we’ve been to and some we are yet to visit!

1) England

2) Rome,Italy

3) Greece

4) Hawaii

5) Spain

6) Germany

7) PEI

There are so many exciting trips to be taken. So many pictures to snap! Awesome food to be tasted! I think people love to travel for the great experiences and the sense of adventure and possibly the thrill of the unknown. Meeting new people, finding out others experiences and learning how cultures differ from country to country. The airplane flying is not the most favourite of most people but it is tolerated as a means to get to the good stuff! Being comfortable and organized can make this part of travelling much more enjoyable.

Visit this ‘Travel Blog’ and read about some of these places as well as find luggage tags to protect your bags from loss and theft.

Kayaking on the Ocean Travel Bag Tag

 
Purple Bike Pullover

 
Blue Hydrangea Wedding Invitation

 
Vacation Beach Scene Coffee Mugs

 
Funny Giraffe Art Luggage Handle Wrap

 
Pink and Black Leopard Pattern Luggage Handle Wrap

 

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Using Paper.li for Marketing

Recently you may have noticed lots of different daily newspapers popping up on Twitter and other social media sites. Perhaps these are new to you and you are wondering what they are about and if they might work for your own marketing.

These papers I had seen showing up but didn’t really know anything about them, how they came together or why one would want to publish one!  I looked into this and last week decided to create a couple of my own to promote my websites and further my marketing efforts.

Paper.li pulls stories, videos, ideas from sources that you authorize by choosing #hashtags on certain subjects that pertain to your newspaper topic. It pulls links together and sets it up in newspaper fashion without you having to scour the net for the information yourself. Unfortunately you can’t really customize the paper too much but you can delete sites or items you don’t like, so it’s good to check the paper when it’s published and be sure there is nothing on there that is offensive or that you don’t approve of.

My first paper.li is called ‘All Things Bridal’ You can check it out to see what paper.li is all about and if this idea appeals to you!

Choose a name for your paper.li that reflects your topic, choose your relevant news sources, choose your keywords wisely and let the paper to the rest for you!

Starfish and Ocean Bridal Shower Custom Invite
Starfish and Ocean Bridal Shower Invite
 
Whimsical Sea Critters Igloo Can Cooler
Whimsical Sea Critters Igloo Can Cooler
 
Blue and Green Floral Design Fingernail Decals
Blue and Green Floral Design Fingernail Decals
 
Spa Party Accessories Favor Box
Spa Party Accessories Favor Box
 
Purple Octopus Pacifier
Purple Octopus Pacifier
 
Under the Sea Girls Birthday Invitation
Under the Sea Girls Birthday Invitation
 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Gala Event Planning Tips

Hosting a gala event, black tie affair or fancy reception requires hard work and great organization. You want things to run smoothly and be as elegant and fairy-tale like as possible. There are many things that you’ll want to be aware of as you begin your planning.

- hire help or at least recruit friends or family members that you can count on and that you can give specific duties too.

- find your venue and check out the set up, halls, ballrooms or churches are often rented out for such fancy events

- choose your Master of Ceremonies to host your event

- choose a menu, bar options, dessert buffet

- if it’s a charity event you’ll need to decide on your fundraising and set goals for this as well

- choose your invitations, rsvp cards and send these out at least 6 weeks in advance of your event, include dress code (black tie, formal)

- choose table seating cards, tables, chairs, tablecloths, table decorations and any other decor require

- does the venue have a PA system or do you need to bring one in, choose your music or have your MC prepare this

-make a table seating chart and have hosts to direct people to their seats

Well that’s a short list with lots of information to think about if you’re about to plan a gala event, especially if it’s your first time hosting something this big and special. Just remember to enlist help and it will all come together.

Here are some samples of table seating cards, invitations and reply cards below. You can visit here to see lots more styles and various  color combinations.

Silver Sequins Invitation Card
Silver Sequins Invitation Card
  
Black Gold Black Corporate Party Event Template Personalized Invite
Black Tie Corporate Party Event Invite
  
Black and White Initial Reply Card
Black and White Reply Card
  
Black & White Traditional Wedding RSVP Card
Black & White Traditional RSVP Card
  
Formal Tuxedo Black Table Number Seating Place Table Cards
Formal Tuxedo Black Table Number Seating Cards
  
Elegant Black and White Art Deco Table Numbers Post Card
Elegant Black and White Table Seating Cards
  

Monday, May 5, 2014

Travelling - Don’t Eat That

I thought I’d share some travel tips for those that might be going on a trip or happen to be frequent flyers.  Since I am doing some research on this for my husband and myself so that we can have a comfortable flight on our next trip, I thought others might benefit from the information as well.

If you are going on a long flight anywhere from 5 – 10 hours here are some things you’ll want to avoid eating and drinking to ensure a more comfortable time during your flight.

The day before your long flight avoid rich, heavy foods. Starches and foods that contain heavy cream as these take longer to digest and may aggravate your digestive system. When you’re sitting for long periods of time bloating and discomfort become more pronounced. The pressurized airplane cabin promotes bloating as it is. Try to get up and walk around, even just standing up and stretching for a couple of minutes can help.  Avoid caffeine and alcohol as these can dehydrate you, even carbonated drinks can cause discomfort, though I often thought that ginger ale was supposed to calm the stomach!  Water is better!

Eat lightly the day before a long flight. Avoid all fast food! Grease is not your friend! Protein like chicken, fish or turkey will keep you satiated and is easier to digest. Fruits and non gaseous vegetables are fine to consume as well.

On the flight bring snacks like bananas, nuts , carrot  sticks and bottled water. You need to stay hydrated so drink plenty of water or light fruit juices even if it means more trips to the washroom.

Keep items like tums, antacids and something for stomach cramping in your carry-on. Gravol can be useful to keep nausea away. Mints or menthol gum can be helpful too!

Well I hope these tips make your next travel vacation or business flight more enjoyable!

I’ve been working lots on my websites and creating designs. Here are a few below. Thanks for visiting my sites.

Leopard Pattern Baby Shower Invitation
Leopard Pattern Baby Shower Invitation
  
Ocean Beach Scene Save the Date Postcards
Ocean Beach Scene Save the Date Postcards
  
Cartoon Giraffe with Flowers Baby Bibs
Cartoon Giraffe with Flowers Baby Bibs
  
Pink Flamingos Birthday Greetings Greeting Card
Pink Flamingos Birthday Greeting Card
  
Busy Bees Honey Do List Dry-Erase Whiteboard
Busy Bees Honey Do List Dry-Erase Whiteboard
  
Animal Patterns Earth Tones Birthday Invitation
Animal Patterns Earth Tones Birthday Invitation