Organizing ideas that control the paper clutter

bhg.comI am getting the itch to do some spring cleaning. I don’t mean washing windows, vacuuming curtains or polishing silver. I mean digging out from under the landslide of paper that has built up over the winter, so that I can see my kitchen counter again.

Paper piles are everywhere. While it may look disorganized, it is anything but. Each pile holds something specific: bills; coupons; kids’ school work; recipes I intend to try someday; holiday cards sitting around since Christmas; craft and school paper for the kids; stationery, greeting cards and mismatched envelopes. There’s a place for all of it. Unfortunately, that place is usually my kitchen. Continue reading

5 ways to use 1 note card

Note cardsWe’re letting you in on a little secret. Our thank you notes aren’t just for thank you’s. You don’t have to be a grad or a bride to use the cards in our graduation or wedding collections. And our personalized note cards can be personalized with your name, a friend’s name, or left completely blank. It’s totally up to you!

Maybe you already knew that the text on most of Pear Tree’s note cards and invitations was editable. But just in case you didn’t, this little tip opens up hundreds of possibilities. Now that you know, if you see a design you like in our bridal shower collection, you can use it for a birthday party invitation. And the same note card can be used to say, “I’m sorry,” “I miss you,” “You’re awesome” or none of the above.

Have fun finding a design you like from any of our collections and coming up with stationery ideas that work for you. That’s the true meaning of personalized stationery.

Party for Moms, Packages for Kids

Party for MomsWhen my son went off to college, I didn’t really think about the effect it would have on my social life. Turns out, it had a pretty huge effect. Our son’s activities in high school had put him in a close-knit group of guys whose parents all attended events together, and with whom we socialized regularly. Once the guys went off to college, we were suddenly party-less!

One of the moms had a great idea for a get-together. She invited us all to her house to assemble care packages for our boys. There were eleven women attending, so she asked us to think of something our boys would like to get, and bring eleven of them. She would supply the boxes, along with wine and appetizers.

When we arrived, we shared wine and appetizers while catching up with each other. We had a blast hearing the stories about each of the boys at school–and there were some good ones! Then we set to work packing the boxes. It was fun to see what each mom had brought. Care package ideas included: energy bars, snacks, microwave meals, drink mixes, toiletries, socks, room freshener, highlighters and school supplies. We then filled a sheet of stationery with messages from each of us, and made eleven copies to enclose in the boxes. The next day we brought them all to the post office.

Was the party a success? I can speak for the moms when I say we all had a wonderful time. It was especially fun packing the boxes and imagining the boys’ faces when they opened them. As for the boys, my son was surprised and very appreciative. He said his favorite thing in the box was the argyle socks. That was a surprise to me!

Tipping and gifting those who make our lives easier

Notelettes for tippingSpreading holiday cheer to those who perform important services for us all year long is what Christmas is all about. Giving a gift to your child’s teacher or day care provider may be obvious, but there are plenty of other people, including the mail carrier, school bus driver, newspaper delivery guy, doorman and garbage collector who shouldn’t be forgotten, and these thank you ideas are sure to please.

Everyone appreciates a little recognition or extra tip around Christmas time. It’s a simple gesture, but one that means a lot, to tuck a little cash inside a mini note card or holiday thank you card. In lieu of cash, enclose a gift card to a local store, restaurant or coffee shop. A teacher might appreciate a gift of personalized stationery, supplies for the classroom or a gift card to a book store.

Thank you ideas don’t have to be extravagant—it really is the thought that counts—but your thoughtfulness creates goodwill that lasts far into the new year. Brighten someone’s day with a little green, and see if that warm feeling doesn’t brighten your own holidays.

Visit our Gift Guide to start shopping now, or keep reading our blog for more gift ideas!

Dear Santa, I’ve Been a Very Good Girl

Letter to SantaEvery year the US Postal Service processes thousands of letters addressed in block letters to: “Santa Claus, The North Pole.” Each one is carefully written by a hopeful child, and just as carefully delivered by an earnest mail carrier. No one questions whether or not it will get there without a proper address (of course it will) or whether Santa has time to read and process all those requests (of course he does).

Writing a letter to Santa is a beloved tradition for many families, and one we wouldn’t miss. Kids love to send and receive mail, and for parents, it’s an inconspicuous way to find out what’s on their Christmas wish list. Anything goes for stationery, from personalized kids thank you cards to colored paper, and for extra credit, a drawing inside is sure to win Santa over.

Of course, the “what I want for Christmas” list is the most important part of the letter. We as parents are often surprised by what our kids write—sometimes touched by their thoughtfulness, sometimes appalled by their choices, but always grateful for the glimpse inside their little heads and hearts.

Then comes that magical moment when your child drops the letter to Santa in the mailbox (and peeks again to make sure it went all the way down), trusting that sometime soon a jolly man who lives far away will open it and get their special message. And on Christmas morning, when Santa comes through with the perfect gift yet again, we will all know just how he did it.

Keep reading our blog for more fun kids ideas. Or check out our collection of personalized thank you cards for kids. They don’t have to say thank you, and are just perfect for writing a letter to Santa.

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