Tips for New Moms from Pear Tree Moms

Props - add a soft or textured blanket

The emotions you feel when welcome your new little one into your arms are indescribably happy ones: joy, love, relief and pride in your accomplishment, followed pretty closely by a panicky, how-am-I-going-to-do-this feeling. The responsibility and the emotions can be overwhelming, so the moms at Pear Tree wanted to help relieve some of that stress by sharing their best tips for new moms. For bedtime, laundry days, play time, school days and much more, here are our favorite tips for new moms from 5 Pear Tree moms.

Michelle, mom of 1 little boy with baby #2 on the way, due in a few short months!

  1. Laundry Magic. Never have to match socks again! Use diaper pins, the ones with the plastic tops, to match socks before laundering. I liked it so much for my son’s socks that I actually do my own now too!
  2. Extra supply of “Liquid Gold.” Help Preemie Babies & Breast Cancer Research by donating if you have extra supply of breast milk. Learn more here.
  3. Food tip. Whole grapes can be dangerous to feed little kids. They can easily choke on them if they’re not cut in half. Use two plates to hold grapes and slide knife through. Cuts a lot all at once! (Here is a pin to help.)
  4. Handprint preservation. Use modeling clay to preserve their sweet little handprint! I started this when my baby was 3 months old and have made them up to 3 years old + counting. I love looking back at these! The other great part about it is, you bake them in the oven and they are non-breakable and flexible. Alex loves looking back to see how small his handprint was when he was a baby and playing with them! We even gave a few as presents. OR use an ink pad + paper – any way of preserving their handprint works for me!

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Unicorn Birthday Party Ideas for Girls

Birthday Party Ideas for Girls
Birthday party ideas for girls seem to get more difficult to come up with each year. My daughter and I talked through a few different ideas and finally landed on a unicorn themed party. She loves anything pink and glittery, so we thought this would be the perfect theme to incorporate many shades of pink and several different accent colors.

Magic Unicorn Kids Birthday Invitations
For the invitations, I decided to use Pear Tree Greetings’ Magic Unicorn Mask Kids Birthday Invitations because they were super unique and fun for the kids to open.  I decided to keep the colors of pink and purple to go with the color theme of the party.

Birthday Party Ideas for Girls
The centerpiece for the party was a unique turquoise unicorn that I had found a while ago and always knew that I would eventually be able to use for a party. Continue reading

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New Year’s Resolution Ideas

New year's resolution ideas
Toss up metallic confetti, wear festive top hats and blow crazy horns, because it’s time for celebrating! It’s a new year filled with goals and wishes waiting for you to make them come true. Every year, we are all guilty of making some of those ordinary resolutions that you see slapped across ads, such as “lose 10 lbs.,” “drink less caffeine,” “save more money,” “eat healthier,” etc. Although those are all fine ideas, this year why not try something different and craft resolutions that will make you a better version of yourself. Here are some New Year’s resolution ideas to get you started!

1. Be Connected
It’s too easy to lose touch with friends and family. Make a commitment to connect with them throughout the year. Don’t just send a text (even tough we are all guilty of it). Actually take a few minutes to write a personal note and stick it in the mail. Or make that extra effort to meet up. Why not host a get-together with distant friends? Take the initiative to rekindle those relationships.
New year's resolution ideas

2. Be Giving
It’s not always about giving money (although, that’s generous too), but about giving your time to help others. This year, rather than just writing a check, go through all of your closets and donate clothes, volunteer at the humane society or send care packages overseas. If you’re crafty, make blankets or hats for those in need, and if you’re sporty, organize a basketball tournament to collect donations. Give back by using your own special talents. Make a difference in people’s lives by giving. Continue reading

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Tips for Fabulous Pet Pictures

Pet pictures
Isn’t it adorable when your pet rolls over and is begging for a belly rub, or sits pretty with their tongue hanging out just waiting for you to toss their favorite toy? These are the moments that are worth capturing. Your pets are part of your family, and their irresistible cuteness deserves a special place on your holiday card this year.

My boyfriend and I have two pups, and I am constantly snapping pics of them with their sweet puppy expressions. This year my holiday card will be splashed with puppy photos, since my friends and family love seeing my pups nearly as much as I do. So here’s a few tips, from one pet lover to another, that will help you take fantastic pet pictures to accent this year’s holiday card.

1. Pick a location
Pet pictures
Find a unique building for your pets to sit in front of, a beautiful nature scene or some unique flooring that complements their fur color. Make sure your location isn’t so enticing that it distracts from your furry friend. After all, you’re taking photos of your pet, not the location.

2. Bribery is a must (a.k.a. treats and toys).
You know your pets will do anything for a treat. So when you need them to stop being their usual hyper selves and sit still, don’t be afraid to bribe them with a treat or a favorite toy. Just hold your bribe of choice up next to your camera or balance it on their nose (if your pet can do tricks), and you’ll have their full attention.

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Derby-Themed Bridal Shower Ideas

Even though California Chrome had already been in the winner’s circle of the Kentucky Derby a few months before, this bride loved her Lucky in Love derby-themed shower, complete with fancy dresses and big, floppy hats traditionally worn at the race. To set the tone and tie all the bridal shower ideas together, the bride-to-be chose Off to the Races Bridal Shower Invitations.
Bridal shower ideas

Before heading to the track, all of the guests met at a local restaurant for lunch and to shower the bride with gifts. The table was sprinkled with photos of the bride growing up, along with pink and gold accents using the Gold Faux Glitter Small Table Decor. At each place setting were small favor boxes adorned with a golden horse and a ribbon stamped with each guest’s name. Inside the boxes were strawberry, chocolate and pistachio flavored French macarons and lucky two-dollar bills for betting.  Continue reading

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Boy’s Birthday Party Ideas: Shark Party!

This year for my boys’ joint birthday party we went with a shark theme. The boys didn’t really have their hearts set on anything special (okay, my oldest would have done another superhero party like last year, and my youngest would have done something construction related…but I wanted to do something new :)), so we sat down at the computer and browsed through the birthday party invitations on Pear Tree’s site for inspiration. They immediately loved the mask designs and especially the shark theme! And so, the planning began…

Although the Shark Mask Kids Birthday Invitation didn’t require any photos, I still wanted to do a mini photo shoot with the boys so we could have photos displayed on the day of the party. I found the perfect shirts and we were set!
Shark birthday party ideas from #PearTreeGreetings! #kidsbirthdaythemes #birthdayparty #kidsbirthday

Once we had our theme, the décor and party items came together pretty quickly. I ordered matching ‘Shark’ table décor and posters, then pulled the red and aqua colors from the invite into the serving pieces wherever I could.
Shark birthday party ideas from #PearTreeGreetings! #kidsbirthdaythemes #birthdayparty #kidsbirthday

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Winter Warm Up Birthday Party

Winter Warm Up Birthday Party - hot chocolate bar #peartreegreetings #birthdaypartyideas #kidsbirthday
With the winter we are having in Minnesota, an outdoor party is out of the question. My niece has a March birthday and every year we struggle to come up with indoor birthday party ideas. This year for her 6th birthday we decided to embrace the cold. Our theme was “Baby, it’s cold outside,” and we decided to stay indoors and have each guest create a canvas craft project. We emphasized the theme with snowflakes on our invitations and a hot chocolate bar for the birthday treat!

Winter Warm Up Birthday Party - the theme begins with the kids birthday invitation #peartreegreetings #birthdaypartyideas #kidsbirthday
Pear Tree’s Snow Day Vertical Christmas Cards with white snowflakes printing over the full photo made perfect winter birthday party invitations. We added Avery’s photos and changed the text to spell out the party details to invite everyone to the celebration.

Winter Warm Up Birthday Party - hot chocolate bar #peartreegreetings #birthdaypartyideas #kidsbirthday
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Top 3 Maid of Honor Tips: It’s the Forethought that Counts

Top 3 Maid of Honor Tips: It’s the Forethought that Counts
As anybody who has been through it could attest, being a maid of honor is a singularly unique experience. There’s this moment—you know, when the bride-to-be pops the question—when the full reality comes seeping in as you process it and everything it means. When my sister asked me, tears immediately filled my eyes as I realized what she really was asking: be my rock. From that moment on, I made a promise to her and myself to make the process as smooth as possible. No sweat, right? For anyone else who might find herself in the same situation and on the verge of a full-on freak-out (don’t worry!), here are a few wedding tips I put together based on my experience.

Not So Lonely At the Top
My first piece of advice? Take advantage of extra available help. Don’t be shy. At the very least, it may help you relax and be confident. There is nothing that says you have to go this alone. After I accepted my duties as maid of honor and realized just how big of a deal it really was, I looked for help. One of my co-workers was recently married, so I turned to her for advice on what she expected from her right-hand woman, issues or concerns that arose during the entire process, and for her favorite gift resources. Also, in this wonderfully technological society we live in, you can utilize the internet for just about everything. There are numerous wedding help sites, apps, and communities online that can answer any question you may have in minutes. Don’t be afraid to utilize any sort of support community you may have — the more the merrier.

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Kelsey & Andy: Will you be my Bridesmaid?

After my fiancé and I got engaged I couldn’t wait to ask my best girlfriends to share in my excitement and be a part of our special day. All eight of the girls in my wedding have been incredible friends to me, and we’ve remained close despite the fact that I live several states away from all of them.

Because I couldn’t ask my friends to be my bridesmaids in person, I wanted to send them something very personal instead. I decided to create care packages for the girls and incorporate some little bridesmaid gifts and fun wedding details to get them excited.

Will you be my Bridesmaid?
My fiancé and I really love to travel together and explore new places, and the beginning of our relationship was long-distance so we decided a vintage, travel-themed wedding would be perfect for us. We already use vintage suitcases as decorations in our living room that will work well as wedding décor, so I thought sending mini suitcases with my invitation and a few fun bridesmaid gifts inside would be perfect. I found a mini suitcase set in pink and aqua, which happened to be two of our wedding colors, and were small enough to be easily mailed.

Will you be my Bridesmaid?
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