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How to Select Flower Arrangements for a Child’s Birthday Party

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Feb 28, 2018

It’s your child’s big day and you’re in the heat of planning the perfect birthday celebration for twenty to thirty friends without a clue as of how to do it.  Don’t worry- there’s an easy and fun way to create the ideal celebratory extravaganza that will fit your budget as well as put the “Wow” factor on the faces of guests.  How do you start?  Well, contrary to popular belief, not all parties for small children have to have a set theme.  Clifford, Smurfs and My Little Pony topics can be incredibly detail oriented that can become overwhelming and impossible to afford on a tight budget.  Give yourself a break and allow yourself a bit of wiggle room by opting for streamers balloons and lots and lots of flowers!  Whether you have a special birthday girl or boy, use these tips to work with a local florist to create an age appropriate blooming presentation that will set the festivities off with a bang.  Choose to navigate the task by implementing these tips for boys and girls or mix and match the colors any way that you want.  Remember, birthday fun starts with cheery ideas and joyous accessories, so don’t be afraid to use your imagination and go for it.

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For Girls

Quite often, we associate the color pink for girls but there’s other options available if you feel limited to this hue.  Lavender, purple, chartreuse, peach, lime green and yellow are also feminine in nature and are stunning when two or more are arranged together.  Ideal varieties may include ranunculus, hybrid delphinium, anemones, calla lilies, gerbera daisies, forsythia and tulips.You can even incorporate a jelly bean filled vase for the festivities.

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For Boys

Just because it’s a boy’s birthday party, it doesn’t mean that you should forget the idea of using flowers as part of the décor.  Many blooms can be very masculine such as delphinium, geraniums, calla lilies, orchids, roses and sunflowers.  Colors that work well for this occasion include maroon, white, blue, red, green, bright yellow and orange.  You can either choose one of these shades or blend together a few flavors to brighten up the room where your party is to be held.  If your hesitant about this idea, grab some truck, sports balls or Lego containers (works well for girls, too) and use these as the flower holders.



Tags: Kids, Flower Arrangements, Party Flowers

The Benefits of Exposing Babies to Flowers

Posted by Suzie Canale on Mon, Oct 02, 2017

f you’re a new parent, you’ve probably recently been bombarded with people offering their expertise on what your little one needs to grow up to be the best person they can be.  “You’ll need to take them to every storytime at the local library”, “You must only feed that child organic food” and “Learning baby sign language should be a top priority” may be just three of the hundreds of pieces of advice being thrown at you.  It can be overwhelming to say the very least and a bit confusing as to which suggestions hold water and which don’t.  

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According to several Boston’s florists, they also have their own point of view when it comes to child rearing and interestingly enough, protest a special set of floral tips that are said to be beneficial to children.  Just by regularly exposing babies and kids to blooms styled in arrangements or grown outside the home, they will be receiving crucial developmental and emotional influences supportive to their growth.  


Some advantages include:

  1. Lower incidences of anxiety and depression.
  2. Increased talents found in creativity.
  3. A greater appreciation of all things that grow.
  4. A general promotion of health in all areas, specifically within sleeping and eating.
  5. An efficient tool for encouraging fine motor skill development.
  6. Increased development of the smell and tactile senses.

These are some great reasons to expose your children to the positive effects of flowers but now you’re going to need to know what are some ways to do it?  It’s a common question but you’ll find the answers are really quite simple.  Just by engaging in one or more of these activities, you’ll soon see the payoff blooms can add to your new family while also receiving some of the benefits yourself.  Check this list out to begin adding florals to your life today!


  1. Plant a garden in your backyard.  This is probably the most obvious but if you don’t have a green thumb don’t worry.  You don’t have to be Martha Stewart to cultivate a flower bed.  Just dig up a small patch of land and add seeds of seasonal bulbs that will sprout during the temperate times of the year.  Water and feed accordingly.
  2. Educate your children by browsing a local florist and ask an employee to tell you a few of the varieties they carry.  Kids can begin to recognize various species and perhaps take a fresh bouquet home with them after their lesson.  
  3. On the next rainy day, go to a flower shop and purchase some stems of your favorite species and let the kiddos arrange the blooms in vases.  You can teach them about the delicate nature of the plant while also allowing them to learn about color, size and texture.  

Tags: Kids, Mother's Day, Lifestyle, Flowers, Flowers for Emotional Health

Raising Boys Who Love Flowers

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, Sep 01, 2017

I’m a mom of two boys and also a big lover of plants and flowers so the question is, “How do I combine them both?”  It’s a stereotype that boys don’t belong around the frilly stuff and should instead be committed solely to the “manly” rough and tumbling activities associated with the outdoors.  Flower designing may as well be stricken right off the list as something the male species should be attracted to and to put it simply… That’s just isn’t right.  Although admittedly, times are getting better in terms of it being socially acceptable to wipe clean the lines drawn for “girl hobbies” vs. “boy hobbies”, I still find this particular stereotype a frustrating issue to bend.  Even though girls have been thankfully increasing the ratios as athletes found within hockey, football and baseball- the male species seems to be having a more difficult time adapting to activities, which have previously been seen as “chic stuff”.  As you can imagine, flower arranging is right up on the top of the tier and I for one feel this is a shame.  Is there a way to attract more boys to the floral world?  I believe there is. lance c.jpg


One way of encouraging a healthy connection to plants and flowers is to partake in hikes where wildflowers are prevalent, visiting preservation areas where plant life is abundant and reading about horticulture together.  By exposing boys to the beauty of flowers, we can stimulate growth that reaches far beyond what we could ever imagine.  Did you know that males who possess a connection to both plants and flowers have a greater likelihood to become compassionate, giving and understanding?   Did you also know that boys who have an early education about horticulture possess stronger skills within creative thinking, planning and organization?  Really, it’s true!  Others believe that it may also advance early development of coping skills as well as fuel a longer and happier life in general.  Now these should be reasons enough alone why we should be fostering this important connection to flowers!  So how should we go about it?  Try these simple ways to support a lasting relationship, which might stimulate positive outcomes throughout a boy’s entire life.


  1. Nature Walks
  2. Family Gardens
  3. Simple Flower Arranging
  4. Cooking with Flowers
  5. Artwork Mirroring Flowers

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Tags: Family Time, Kids, Suzie Canale, Family Business

Kids' Flower Bouquets

Posted by Suzie Canale on Mon, Jul 17, 2017

It’s summertime and parents all over New England are looking for fun activities to distract and entertain the kiddies for the next several months.  Hopefully encouraging them to play outside, there are so many wonderful things to do to pass the time, many of which you can find hidden in your own backyard.  If you have a child who particularly loves gardening, here’s an idea that might be perfect for you!  Do you have a bed of flowers and a few old masons jars lying around that need to be repurposed?  If you do, here is an excellent craft to teach your children while also bringing the beauty of summertime into your homes.

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photo credit via aboutflowers.com

Kid-Friendly Directions for Making Arrangements


Materials:

Cutting Shears Masons Jars


Water Flowers


Green Thumb


Directions:

(Your child will need to be supervised during this activity.)

  1.  Take the cutting shears and snip off shoots that are bright in color of differentiating lengths.  Depending on the child’s age, you may want him or her to do their own cuttings so you’ll want to remind them of the plants they are allowed to snip and the ones they are not.  Excellent species to use for this type of arrangement are catmint, hydrangea, nasturtiums, campanula, yarrow, sunflowers, sedum, butterfly bush and lavender.  

  1.  Fill the masons jar with warm, temperate water (not cold) and set aside.

  1.  Once you have your floral clippings ready, place one at a time in the vase, fluctuating between colors and lengths to design an attractive an interesting piece.  Be sure to turn the jar as you add stems to avoid off balanced bouquets and clumping.  Try to only touch a flower once as well because the more times the petals are disturbed, the greater chance of bruising or breakage.

  1.  Once you have filled the vase, bring the piece inside and place on your table.  If you have more spare containers and an overflowing garden bed, create several others and gift to loved ones and neighbors.  

Tags: Bouquets, About Flowers, Kids, Crafts, Summer

Easy Step-by-Step Flower Garland Craft

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, Mar 03, 2017

We are pushing through the last few weeks of winter here in New England and although spring is certainly not to far away, there’s still the possibility of a snowy day or two.  Being stuck in the house with nothing to do can be difficult, especially when you have little kids trapped inside with you and it may be a challenge to find something to do.  That’s why its always a great idea to have a few fun crafts on hand to toil away the hours until the more temperate days allow us to play outdoors again.  Crafting for both kids and adults is a healthy way to keep our hands and minds busy as well as enjoy special time together creating with one another!  Since we love flowers so much, I’ve found this great project that’s simple, easy and ready to hang in your home when you are finished!  

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PHOTO CREDIT via guidepatterns.com

Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

* Tissue Paper

* Pipe Cleaners

* Beads with Large Holes

* Tape

* Scissors


Crafting Technique Steps:


  1. Slide a bead on each end of a pipe cleaner and bend the ends to avoid the beads from slipping off.


  1. Find the mid point of the pipe cleaner and bend them exactly in half.


  1. Use the scissors and cut colored tissue paper into strips to be used as flower petals.


  1. Roll the strips of tissue paper around the pipe cleaners in different sizes and shapes to create a multitude of different looking blossoms and them secure the paper with tape.  

  1.  Secure the florets onto a long piece of string using the remaining tape and        hang in an archway to create a garland for your home.   

Tags: Crafts, Kids, DIY

Does Your Kid Turn into a Monster During the Holidays?

Posted by Suzie Canale on Mon, Dec 19, 2016

You may have laughed out loud when you read the title of this blog but I bet it wasn’t because the idea was out totally of the park!  How many of you secretly parent a child who is otherwise perfectly well mannered until the dreaded Christmas season rears its ugly head?

“I want this!  

“I better get that!”

“But you said Santa would give it to me!”  

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photo credit via http://702mag.com/

Sound familiar?

 

I don’t know what happens but many kids suffer this incredible personality change when Christmas closes in and many of us have a hard time figuring out why this occurs?

 

We use Santa as bait for good behavior, but even the guy in the red suit is no match for the whiles of overly excited, out of control little pills.

 

Perhaps the “Twinkie Defense” (or in this case the “Candy Cane Defense”) is responsible since their intake of sugar extends well past what their small bodies can manage?   Or could it be the continuous visions we load their tiny minds with through holiday media of movies and books?  Are characters such as Ebenezer Scrooge impacting their little minds with thoughts of selfishness, annoyance and naughty behavior?

 

According to specialists, the “Christmas Crank for Children” diagnosis stems from an increase of stimulation, decreased amount of sleep and an influx of in-nutritious foods.  One of these off kilter may not seem like such a big deal but when you combine all three-SHAZZAM!  You’ve got yourself one unhappy, inflexible hooligan of a kid.  

 

That kind of stinks, right?

 

After all, this season is made merry and bright by a child’s faith in holiday magic.  Their inherent ability “to believe” is what makes the whole thing fun and memorable for all of us who will do anything to see smiling faces on Christmas Day.

 

Is there anything we can do to prevent this negative metamorphous from occurring?  

 

Of course there is!   

 

While we can’t compete with the impact of Christmas Crazy, we can attempt to manage certain areas of their care, which will benefit their health (most specifically their mood) during the holidays.

  1. Mandate a reasonable time for bed and just say no to “Can I have ten more minutes, pleeeaaaasssseee?”
  2. Make sure they are drinking lots and lots of water to wash their systems out from built up sugar.  You’re not going to get them to avoid all of the Christmas sweets but you can help to keep them hydrated.
  3. Lower their expectations of what they are going to “get” and ask them what they are going to “give”.  Not up scaling previous holiday shopping is one way to keep things under control and to evade some of the unwarranted “gimmees”.  
  4. While there are lots of invitations to get-togethers and parties, your child may not be able to attend all of them.  Seasonal burn-out is typical with younger children who really need a grounded schedule to go by.  While agreeing to a few dates is perfectly fine, having your family booked out every day of the Christmas month is going to undoubtedly overwhelm and exhaust them.
  5. Switch up their books and DVD’s with some topics that are not holiday related.  Keep the Christmas classics that you love and add material other than stuff solely wrapped around trees, wreaths and Santa.  It will help keep things in perspective and allow an easier transition when it’s time to get back to their regular routines.

Tags: Christmas, Santa, Holidays, Kids

Ornamental Magic on a Budget

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, Dec 02, 2016

hristmas time is here and the bells are ringing, music is flowing and the decorations are being hung with care!  One of the biggest yuletide displays is the beloved Christmas tree, which is customarily decked out with shiny baubles and lights.  This presentation is the focus of the celebratory decor so it’s important to take pride in choosing themes, color palettes and textures.  


But wait a minute…  This can be EXPENSIVE!

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photo credit via http://www.nomeatathlete.com/

Have you ever really done a good accounting check on how much ornaments, tinsel and lights can cost for only a single year?  Generally, tree accessories can be a fortune ranging anywhere from $5.00 to $50.00 for a single package.  Holiday companies have made a fortune over charging for personalized gifts and hanging tokens when realistically we’re only using them one day out of the whole year!  I mean come on!  How much is overspending when it comes to dressing up a tree?

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photo credit via http://www.bhg.com/

Through careful research, I’ve found some great ways to cut back on the elaborate ornament fees by just using a little imagination.  Make your tree gorgeous without having to tap into the kids college fund and show your guests you can still implement a look with style and taste!  Start checking in your closets, attics and basements because I guarantee- you’ll have everything you need if you do some prep work before hand.  Be sure to add both perishable and nonperishable items including dried fruits and antique relics that have been passed down for generations.  Select only materials that are small in size and durable enough to be featured on branches that might be whimsy.  This is a fun activity for the entire family so get together and raid the house for anything and everything that will make your tree uniquely spectacular!

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photo credit via http://stowandtellu.com/

Tags: Christmas, Holiday Decor, Christmas Ornaments, DIY, Crafts, Kids

How to get Your Kids to Love Flowers

Posted by Suzie Canale on Sat, Nov 05, 2016

If you’re a big fan of flowers, you might want to pass along your hobby to your children.  Whether you have boys or girls, floral enthusiasts understand the importance of nourishing their child’s connection to nature, particularly when it comes to flora and fauna.  The reason lies in the benefits, which include a healthy development of curiosity, creativity and a stronger bond to our surrounding environment.  According to scientific study, kids that play with flowers grow up to have a stronger nurturing tendency towards both nature and human beings.  Many lessons can be learned by all who raise a family with fresh flowers in and around their homes, which are beneficial to all long term.  If you’re stumped as to how you can begin educating your children about the importance of appreciating flowers, try these fun activities and projects to get you started!

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photo credit via www.milajasmineflowers.com.au

Fun and Easy Activities to Nourish a Child’s Bond to Flowers


  1. Pick a patch of land and start a flowerbed in your backyard!  Allow your child to hand select their desired varieties of packaged seeds and let them get digging!
  2. Literally, make your kids stop and smell the roses.  The effects of aromatherapy are said to cure issues such as anxiety and depression without having to use over the counter drugs.  When they feel better, they’ll instantly tie flowers with positive feelings and mindsets.
  3. Crafting with flowers shows little ones the vast usage of heads, petals and stems while simultaneously opening the door to their imaginations.  Try having them glue dried petals to construction paper and let them make cards, bookmarks or beautiful pictures to hang up on the wall.
  4. Encourage your kids to play “florist” and allow them to manifest their own arrangements using cut flowers that are either purchased from local shops or simply cut from the backyard.  Don’t focus on the perfection of the piece, instead emphasize creativity and see what their tiny hands can come up with!  Who knows?  You might just have a brilliant designer in the making!
  5. Do your neighborhood some good and have the kids mix together small bouquets that they can gift to friends and family.  They’ll see the immediate joy and happiness they elicit and seek out to replicate that reaction over and over again.

Tags: Floral Design, Kids, DIY

Arrangements Thematic after Famous Children’s Books

Posted by Suzie Canale on Tue, Aug 30, 2016

I work in the children’s department of a library here in Massachusetts where thousands of books holding wonderful plots and characters constantly inspire me.  I also used to work in a flower shop, which too, provoked me to come up with different ways to display and arrange a variety of flowers.  So I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be neat if the two worlds could combine to make something really spectacular?

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  photo credit via - pinterest Four Seasons Florist

\What if we took famous characters from well-known children’s titles and designed beautiful centerpieces and bouquets to mirror them?  Think about the conversations these presentations would encourage if they were used in libraries, youth events, schools or even kid’s birthday parties?  The idea has prospect doesn’t it?  Both fun and educational, flowers themed after juvenile literature can open the door to a whole new world of magical reading and floral appreciation.  Here are some of the best one’s I’ve seen so far from a few of my favorite picture books.

cat_and_the_hat_flowers.jpg photo credit -  A Touch of Class Florist and Gifts- Stockbridge, GA

Tags: Childrens Book, Libraries, Kids, Flower Arrangements, Books

Handmade Flower Inspired Kid’s Crafts for Mother’s Day

Posted by Suzie Canale on Sun, May 01, 2016

I think we all agree that gifts made from the heart are the best gifts to receive, especially when they come from our children.  There’s something about unwrapping a present handed to you by your child and watching their little faces light up with pride that makes this type of gesture the most meaningful.  So it’s up to us to encourage crafting for children and to teach the value of this sentiment instead of spending money to show others how we feel.  With Mother’s Day soon approaching, we have the perfect opportunity to open up the window for this type of creativity!  Books and online websites have loads of ideas for both kids and parents to start using their imagination, particularly with crafts thematic after flowers, which are wonderful for the holiday.  Here are a few of my favorites that I’ve found and hope to pass along to your children to make this Mother’s Day!  

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photo credit: kansascity.com

Paper Flower Pinwheels

These are so sweet and easy to make by just folding the corners of a piece of colored paper and securing the center front and back with plastic beads.  Have the kids go one step above and write all the things they love most about mom on the petals to let her know how much she really means to them!

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photo credit: crafthubs.com

Paper Flower Necklaces

Who needs gold and diamonds when you can make this adorable paper flower necklace?  Cut out desired blossom shapes and glue to a string or paper loop and let mom show off her flashy new bauble!  Felt is also an optional material.

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photo credit: funhandprintartblog.com

Painted Handprint Flower Bouquet

It doesn’t get much cuter than this when your child gifts you with their tiny handprints to form a bouquet.  Not only will she love hanging this piece of artwork on the wall but she’ll also be able to remember the days of her children’s early childhood for years to come.

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photo credit: goodshomedesign.com

Clothespin Pot

Grab some old clothespins and glue them around an old clay container to make this neat little flowerpot!  Cut out small hearts and clip them to the sides, afterwards adding a little plant to finish the effect!  Mom will love the creativity and the purposeful usefulness, too.  

Tags: Mother's Day, Kids, Mothers Day

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