May 17

You’ve Graduated…Now What?

Celebrate Your Graduation

Celebrate Your Graduation

Graduation is an important milestone in your life.  High school, college, graduate school…no matter what graduation you’re celebrating, it represents a big change in the direction of your life.  From high school, many people move out on their own for college and truly begin to be independent.  After college, people enter the workforce and begin to earn a living.  Graduate school can follow right after college for some, and for others, it represents a shift in their lives or a major step forward in their career. 

But for many people, graduation comes with a big question:  now what?!

That’s a huge question, and a lot of people might seem to have the answer.  However, no matter how many people give you suggestions, you’re the only person who can make the big decision as to what you’ll do.

If you’ve graduated high school and haven’t selected a college, that might be your first big decision.  However, what if you aren’t sure if you are going to college?  No matter what they say about a college education being absolutely necessary, some people just aren’t suited to the college environment.  And you don’t have to have a degree to find a job.  A certificate or degree from a trade school can open many doors.  People who want to do construction, work in the automobile industry, work on a farm, cook, or work in the transportation industry don’t necessarily need a degree. 

Some people have plans for college but don’t want to immediately jump in to a four year program.  They might spend a few years as a two-year college or even get a job and work for a year or two before going to school.  Those that have the means might even take some time to travel.

Graduating from college has a similar decision: graduate school or job?  This one is usually much easier, however.  People who are planning to become professors, doctors, or lawyers know they will need more education.  Others, however, know that they can start their careers with a four-year degree and will move into the workforce.  There are some people who are undecided, however.

For these people, it’s not so much a question of work or graduate school.  Instead, it’s more a question of what they truly want to do with their lives.  Even after earning a bachelor’s degree, some people aren’t quite certain what career they really want.  For these people, sometimes working as a temp or doing some volunteer work in areas they think they may be interested in can help them make a decision.

No matter what, however, take a bit of time to celebrate your graduation before you begin worrying about what comes after it.  You’ve earned a short rest!

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May 02

Moms are Always There for Us

Moms have to multitask!

Moms have to multitask!

Remember when you were growing up and you needed someone.  The first person you most likely turned to was your mom.  As a kid, mom was your constant cheerleader, nurse, chauffeur, chef, and much more.  Without her, where would you be today?  It’s thanks to mom that you grew up to become the person you are now.  Mother’s Day is this Sunday, May 8, so be sure to take the time to thank you mom for everything she has done.

Mom was, most likely, your primary caretaker when you were an infant.  While today sees more stay at home dads, this is a fairly recent trend.  Mom fed you, changed you, and was probably the one getting up in the middle of the night when you cried. 

Most of us learned to ride a bike at some point or another, and inevitably we fell off and skin up our knees.  Usually it was mom with a band-aid and a kiss to make it all better.  She cleaned us up when we were dirty, fixed us up when we got hurt, and always encouraged us to get back up and try again.

Mom did a lot more for us, too.  She’s the one who often drove us to soccer, dance, or choir practice.  She was always there to get us after school when we missed the bus or when we needed to stay late for an after-school activity. 

Even as adults we often call on our mothers for advice.  Sometimes it’s something easy like asking for a cooking tip, but sometimes we need mom to come help us out of a bad situation.  Whether we need a little pick me up financially or just someone to listen to our problems, mom is only a phone call away.

Mom has always been there for us in many different ways.  It doesn’t seem enough to honor her only once a year.  Fortunately, you don’t have to always wait until Mother’s Day to send her a lovely bouquet of flowers or just to tell her “thanks for being my mom.”  Be sure to honor her on Mother’s Day, her birthday, and any time of the year you feel like telling her you love her.

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Apr 26

Mother’s Day in Kansas City

 

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day!

Mother’s Day is May 8—that’s just a few weeks away!  Are you ready for this big day?  If you haven’t made plans yet, here are some events happening on Mother’s Day that might be perfect to take your mom to.

Power Gardens has a great day planned for Mother’s Day.  You can eat brunch at Café Thyme, order a gourmet picnic lunch to eat while touring the gardens, and listen to an outdoor performance by Brookside Brass.

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art will also host a Mother’s Day event.  Many of them are free, including many of the live music events.  Irma Starr, a local artist, will be on hand to create unique gifts for mothers, too.

If your mom likes animals, spend the day at the Kansas City Zoo.  Moms get in free, plus they get free ice cream and free rides on the train, tram, and boat!  Several new exhibits have opened this year, such as the River Otter exhibit, so check it out.

The Truman Presidential Library also gives mothers free admission on Mother’s Day.

The Symphony Designers’ Showhouse is being held on Mother’s Day this year.  It features many local designers and can give your mom some great decorating ideas.  Tickets are $15 at the door or $13 in advance.  The Showhouse is open from 12 to 5 on Mother’s Day.

Many different restaurants are planning Mother’s Day specials, as well.  A few of them include Buca di Beppo, Capital Grille, Garozzo’s Ristorante, Benton’s Prime Steakhouse, La Bodega, and McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood.

If your mom’s the active type, maybe you’ll want to participate in the KC Express Mother’s Day 5K with her.  The walk/run race is great for first-timers and veterans alike.  Different prices and refreshments are available.  The race starts at 8:00 am in Corporate Woods, Building 40, in Overland Park.

Don’t forget to order your Mother’s Day flowers as soon as possible from Village Gardens!

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Apr 20

Easter Happenings in KC

Easter is SundayWhat’s going on for Easter in Kansas City?  There are a number of different events this weekend that celebrate Easter, so if you’re looking for something to do, read on!  Note that all of these events are held on Saturday, April 23rd.  Most egg hunts and parades are on Saturday so families can go to Sunday church services and spend the holiday visiting with their families.

The Kansas City Easter parade at Zona Rosa starts at 11:00 at 8640 N. Dixson Ave.  The parade features many different local celebrities and bands.  After the parade, head to Town Square to see who is crowned Most Outstanding Gentleman, Lady, Family, and more.  Then meet the Easter Bunny, explore the petting zoo, and enjoy other activities.  More can be found at www.zonarosa.com.

The Midland Railway will host its annual Easter Egg Hunt Train Rides from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.  An egg hunt, trail rides, and photos with the Easter bunny will be included.  The cost is $12 for adults and children over 12, $7 for children under 12, and babies are free.  More details can be found at http://midland-ry.org.

The Bunny Eggstravaganza at Andersen Park is from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.  It’s free for the whole family.  Enjoy clowns, balloon art, and more.  Kids can also get a look at a real fire engine and police car.

Enjoy an egg hunt and pancake breakfast at the Red Bridge UMC Easter Egg Hunt & Pancake Breakfast at the Red Bridge United Methodist Church from 8:00 am to 11:00 am.  It’s free!  Visit www.redbridgeumc.com for more.

The Marlborough Community Center will hold their Easter Eggstravaganza from 10:00 to noon on Saturday.  Bring your kids to their egg hunt and check out their various activities and entertainment.

After enjoying these great Saturday activities, spend Sunday afternoon having your own egg hunt or gathering.  Hiding eggs around your yard for your young children and relatives can be a lot of fun.  Adults will enjoy visiting and eating that delicious Easter dinner.

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Apr 19

Giving Thanks to Our Administrative Professionals

Administrative Professionals Day is coming up—this year, this observance is on April 27, with the entire week of April 24 to April 30 being Administrative Professionals Week.  On this day, be sure to thank all of those hardworking professionals—secretaries, assistants, office managers, receptionists—who keep your office running smoothly. 

The secular holiday was first celebrated in 1952 as National Secretaries Week.  Harry F. Klemfuss, a New York publicist, and Mary Barrett, president of the National Secretaries Association, came up with the idea.  The goal was to get more people to consider careers in the administrative support area because there was shortage of trained professionals.  The first National Secretaries Week was June 1st through the 7th, with June 4 National Secretaries Day.  Later, in 1955, the week was changed to the last week of April.  In 1981, it was renamed Professional Secretaries Week, and in 2000, Administrative Professionals Week.

Today, the week is one of the largest workplace events and is celebrated worldwide.  In the US, bosses often give their administrative assistants flowers, candy, other gifts, or take them out to eat. 

Here are some interesting facts concerning Administrative Professionals that might surprise you.

In 2010, there were more than 5.7 million administrative professionals employed in the U.S.

Between 2008 and 2018, the U.S. Department of Labor estimates that more than 500,000 new administrative professional jobs will be created, an 11 percent increase.

When National Secretaries Week was first created, most secretaries answered the phones, filed, and typed on type writers.  Today, administrative professionals are required to be computer-proficient, organize large events, do research, handle some office accounting, coordinate multiple schedules, and do reports.

Don’t forget to show your appreciation to your administration professionals on Administrative Professionals Day!  Visit our collection of flowers especially designed for this day and select one for delivery.

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Apr 12

Fun Facts About Wednesdays

Happy Wednesday!

Happy Wednesday!

It’s Wednesday!  But did you know that the names of the days of the week are more than just random?  There is a history behind each name, plus each day of the week has some fun and different little facts pertaining to it.

Wednesday comes from the Old English word “wodnesdaeg.”  This word meant “Woden’s Day” While some people believe Woden is simply an alternative spelling of Odin, the chief Norse good, Woden is actually a separate entity.  He was part of the pantheon of gods of the Anglo-Saxon and Continental polytheistic religions.  He was, however, often associated with Odin.  Later, after Christianity swept through Europe, his story was rewritten to say he was an important king in ages past, and a number of rulers claimed to have been descended from him.

Wednesday is associated with the planet Mercury and the color green.  You can see this association in a number of the Romance languages such as Spanish (miercoles) and French (mercredi). 

The German name for the day, Mittwoch, literally translates to “mid-week,” while in the Portuguese, it’s called quarta-fiera, or “fourth day.” 

In Mandarin Chinese, Wednesday is

According to Mother Goose’s nursery rhyme, “Wednesday’s child is full of woe.”

Religious holidays traditionally held on a Wednesday include Ash Wednesday and Holy Wednesday

People often refer to Wednesday as “hump day” because it’s the middle day of the week.  Once you’re over the hump, it’s all downhill until the weekend!

Help people enjoy their Wednesday by sending them a great arrangement of flowers!

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Apr 06

Random Acts of Kindness

Have you ever been the “victim” of a random act of kindness?  If you have, you know just how great it feels.  Why not give someone else that great feeling by doing something random for them?  These random acts of kindness can turn someone’s day around and make them smile.  They’re also a nice way of showing someone just how much you care for them.  If you need an idea for a random act of kindness, here are a few.

Surprise someone with lunch.  Take a co-worker out to eat by dropping by and asking if they have plans for lunch.  Then pick up the tab.  To really make it special, let them pick the restaurant.  You can do this for their birthday or other event, but that isn’t exactly random.  To really make it a random act of kindness, take them out on a day that has no real meaning.  You could also pick up lunch and take it by your friend’s or significant other’s office. 

If you aren’t able to take someone out for lunch, think about sending them flowers.  Flowers are a quick and easy random act of kindness.  You can easily have flowers delivered to a co-worker, a friend, a family member, or even someone who lives in another state or country.  If you want to show someone how much you care but can’t actually stop by to do so in person, go with flowers.

Doing a chore or taking up part of a task can be a really nice random act of kindness, especially if you know someone is overburdened.  For example, if you know an extra task is going to go to a certain person at work and you have the time to take it on, volunteer to do so.  For a friend or co-worker, volunteer to do some yard or house work.  If someone is out of town, imagine their surprise when they come home to find that you’ve cleaned their house or mowed their yard.  Just be sure they will be able to find everything if you move stuff around, and you might want to let them you know you cleaned before they get home and think they’ve been robbed!

Random acts of kindness don’t have to be big or expensive.  Bake some cookies for the office, give your significant other a back rub after a long day, or take it upon yourself to do something like clean the kitchen.  These small acts of kindness don’t take much, but they can be enough to make someone smile and make their day a little brighter.

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Mar 29

Get Ready for the Men’s 2011 Final Four

If you or your significant other love college basketball, then you know it’s almost Final Four time!  The games will be played on April 2nd and 4th in Houston, Texas.  The game on the second will be between Virginia Commonwealth University and Butler, while the game on the fourth features the University of Kentucky and the University of Connecticut.  If you’re a college sports fanatic, you’ll be glued to the TV.  But if you aren’t, you may find yourself still sucked into the madness as a party host.

Preparing for a Final Four party isn’t really that difficult.  After all, your snacks and decorations are just the background—everyone is going to be focused on the big screen.  However, that doesn’t mean you can slack off too much.  There’s still a lot to be done.

For decorations, go with team colors.  Since there’s not a whole lot you can do without owning items related to the college your rooting for, the main thing is to go with a table cloth, paper plates, napkins, and paper cups in the team’s colors.  If you do happen to have shirts, hats, or anything else with the team logo on it, you can display them on the table or on your entertainment center.

As far as food goes, think finger foods.  You want things that can be eaten in front of the television, of course.  Pizza, chicken strips, hot wings, chips and dips, veggies and fruit, or sandwiches are all good options.  You’ll also want to have plenty of drinks on hand.  Some people will want cold beer, but you should also have some soft drinks, bottled water, or even tea.  Get an idea of what people want to drink, or ask your guests to pitch in and bring their favorite beverages. 

Finally, seating is something you might need to consider.  If you have a lot of people coming, you may need to get out some folding chairs or even rearrange your living room.  Be sure everyone has a good view of the TV and has some room to jump up if something exciting happens.

That’s about it.  Don’t overdo decorating or even go to the extreme on making food for a Final Four party.  Just have some basic snacks, plenty of beverages, and some comfortable seating.

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Mar 22

Making Someone Smile

We’ve all been there: the bad day.  The alarm didn’t go off, there was a traffic jam on the way to work, the boss was in a bad mood, a deadline suddenly moved from next week to tomorrow…you know how it goes.  But then someone does something to make you smile, and the stress melts away.  Making someone smile is one of the most important things we can do. 

There are many different things we can do to make someone smile.  It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture, either.  In fact, sometimes it’s the small things that really do it.  For example, if someone is having a hard time at work, offer to help them out if you can.  Even if your own job responsibilities won’t allow you to do that, let them know that you would gladly help out if you could.  Take them out to lunch or see if they want to go out after work.  Just being there and listening can make someone smile,

Another way is to smile yourself.  Being a happy, upbeat person tends to be infectious.  If you always try to be cheerful and look on the bright side of things, you can help those around you see that things aren’t quite as bad as they seem.  Don’t be unrealistic, because that can actually make things worse, but do what you can to always smile at least once a day, no matter how bad things are.

Of course, while you don’t have to give actual gifts to make someone smile, they never hurt.  Candy, little trinkets, and flowers can all bring a smile to someone’s face.  Village Gardens even has a great line of arrangements in our Make Someone Smile line just for this purpose.

Next time you see someone having a bad day, do something to make them smile.  They will return the favor when you’re having a rough time of it.

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Mar 13

The Flowers of Ireland

St. Patrick’s Day is coming up this week, so many people are thinking about shamrocks and Irish stories.  If you’re lucky enough to get to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland, or if you get to visit the Emerald Isle soon, you’ll see a number of different flowers.  Here are just a few of the pretty flowers you may find on your visit.

The shamrock, of course, is native to Ireland and is the unofficial symbol of the country.  It’s similar to the clover, and it is said to bring good luck to those who wear one.

The sunny and cheerful daisy is found in Ireland and is one of the flowers the Irish most enjoy giving.  Daffodils and sunflowers are also popular among the Irish.

Lilies are also found in Ireland.

There are a number of different wildflowers found in Ireland.  They include the common dog violet, the fly orchid, the foxglove, and the primrose.

If you see one of the lords and ladies plants, which feature both male and female flowers on upright stalks, do not eat the berries.  They’re highly poisonous.

The Killarney Fern is an indigenous fern found in Ireland, but you may not see many of them.  They have been picked for decoration since the Victorian era, and they are now fairly rare.

Wall pennywort actually does grow near walls, between rocks, and in the woods of Ireland.  It can be up to 15 inches tall and has beautiful bell-shaped flowers on it.

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