5 Great Father’s Day Gift Ideas

If you’re like me, you know that buying a gift for some of the most important people in our lives is often the most challenging.

As Father’s Day approaches, we might find ourselves searching for the best gift for Dad. But what do you get the guy that probably has everything? We’re here to offer you an exciting list of gifts that Dad is sure to love! 

 

1) Batting Cages
If your dad is a guy’s guy who enjoys playing sports and watching them on TV, a baseball-themed gift is a perfect idea! What’s great about this gift idea is it allows you to combine a fun activity and spend quality time with your dad. He will love that you thought of him and are taking him out.
Try Le Club Dome or Bergy Baseball’s Batting cages!

You can find their info at the links below:
https://leclubdome.com/batting-cage-baseball-softball-montreal-west-island/
https://www.bergybaseball.com/cages-de-frappeurs

2) Photo Compilation Sign for Dad
The Red Key offers a variety of unique and handmade acrylic signs that would be perfect to help celebrate dad! Think of a beautiful sign with your father’s name on it, surrounded by pictures of your family? The acrylic float mount can be displayed proudly at home – above the mantle, as a table centre piece or even in dad’s man cave!  Any parent would love this unique gift from the heart.

Check out The Red Key’s Etsy Shop for ideas!

3) DIY Tool Box filled with Dad’s faves!
Put together a little tool box with some of your dad’s favorite foods and drinks. You can include anything dad would love! Thinks chips, candy, soda or beer, and top it off with a cute handmade card or note.
Repurpose an old gift bag or shoebox to create the tool box. You can wrap it in tissue or old newspaper. This allows you to have a cool homemade box for a wonderfully personalized gift!

See the links below from Pinterest to get more ideas on Father’s Day Tool Box kits.
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/360710251380487213/

https://www.kristendukephotography.com/17-homemade-fathers-day-gifts/

4) Round of Golf
Fourth on our list is a round of golf for dad. This gift is a classic that he is sure to love! Let your dad grab his favorite polo, ball cap and shoes and take him out on the green for an 18-hole round. There are a ton of great golf courses around the city that could serve as a location for this gift idea.

- The Royal Montreal Golf Club
  http://www.rmgc.org
- Golf Iles des Soeurs
  http://golfidsmontreal.com/fr/

- Meadowbrook Golf Club
  http://www.clubdegolfmeadowbrook.com

5) Personalized Grill Set
BBQ season is just around the corner and that means more time for family, outdoors and delicious food grilled up on the BBQ.

If your dad is like mine and enjoys manning the grill, what better way to say Happy Father’s Day than with a cool DIY Grill Set that he can use proudly throughout the summer months. In order to make this gift a success, you will need a few key supplies – wood, nails & hammer, paint, hooks and grill tools. Put all these items together to create a cool summertime present that your dad can use for years to come!

Check out the Lil’Luna webpage for more information on how to nail this unique gift!
https://lilluna.com/grill-set-holder/

Do you have unique Father’s Day gift ideas? Share them with us in the comments below!

6 Top Marriage Proposal Ideas

A marriage proposal is one of the most memorable times in a couple’s life. Whether it be at an extravagant location, or simply at one’s home, this gesture marks a moment in time that both people with remember forever!

6) Beach Proposal – Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

The beach in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic makes the top 6 list of best marriage proposal spots. With the sound of waves crashing on the sand and the air winding through the palm trees, this beach is one of the most beautiful, and relaxing locations in the Caribbean.

One key idea comes to mind for how to go about nailing the perfect beach proposal.

A quintessential proposal under the stars. One of the simplest and most memorable proposals can be done on the beach, at night, with a few tealite candels strewn about the sand. This proposal has it all – simplicity, beauty and tropical flare.

5) Rooftop Terrace – New York City, New York

New York City is full of historic brownstones and apartment buildings with large rooftop spaces. The rooftop terrace, overlooking the city’s twinkling lights, makes our list of best marriage proposal spots.

The beautiful simplicity of having your loved one propose on a big city summit is an unforgettable and romantic option.

4) Grand Canyon – Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

The Grand Canyon’s majesty makes it another top location for a proposal. This natural wonder’s vastness, valleys and cliffs gives it another worldly feel. A proposal at this location could take place either in the evening, or during the day.

An evening proposal gives the couple the opportunity to see a desert sunset, as well as the evening sky. Grab a blanket and a bottle of champagne and toast to new beginnings under the stars.

A daytime proposal allows the couple to experience the view of the Canyon, as well as the park’s plant and wildlife.

3) Musee du Louvre – Paris, France

Paris is a dream location for many couples. It has so much to offer – culture, history, fashion, amazing food, and even more amazing scenery.

Paris is a city for everyone. For art lovers, the Musee du Louvre is one of the most important museums in the world, containing some of the most renowned collections from the history of art.

A proposal outside the museum, in front of the Louvre Pyramid, is quintessential Paris, with an artistic flare!

2) Chalet – Mont-Tremblant, Quebec

Imagine being proposed to in the middle of a beautiful forest, with the changing leaves around you and a crystal clear lake off in the distance? Or, if being amongst the trees isn’t your thing, imagine looking out onto this serene landscape from the comfort of a chalet.

A chalet, located in the heart of Quebec’s ski country, is a great location for a low-key and intimate proposal

1) Lavender Fields – St-Eustache, Quebec

The lavender fields in St-Eustache top the list of 6 best proposal spots. This location is a great idea for all nature lovers who are also romantics at heart. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate a new chapter than to have the future bride or groom get down on one knee amidst rows of beautiful and sweet-scented lavender.

This option offers beauty and romance at a low cost, with no frills attached.

Was your proposal at or similar to one of the six above? We would love to hear your story so please share in the comment section below.

Wedding Traditions From Around The World

Though our world can be different in so many ways, you would be hard pressed to find a culture that did not celebrate marriage.  No matter what culture, religion, or social class we come from we all have wedding traditions that we honor.

Happy

In some parts of Brazil they have a tradition where the groom has to tame a donkey in order to prove his worth prior to the wedding. It is also customary for the bride to place her shoes in the middle of the dance floor so that guests can dance around and drop money on them to show their support for the couple’s financial future. Engraving each other's names in their wedding rings is also customary.

Wedding rings

In Japan the bride will wear a white kimono with long sleeves and will have her hair done in a wedding topknot. Instead of a veil, the bride will wear a white hood.  The bride and groom will also change their outfits numerous times during the wedding.Celebration of a traditional Japanese wedding.Black & white photography

A recent trend among Japanese weddings is the over-the-top return gift, okaeshi.  Usually the guests will receive a small gift after signing the guestbook and weeks later receive something larger. Some couples even send guests a catalog of gifts to choose from.

 

In Africa the bride plays a very special role and is treated with respect because she is a link between the unborn and the ancestors. Broom jumping is a very popular African marriage ritual, it is thought to originate from long ago when a couple would place sticks on the ground, representing their new home together.

 

Depositphotos_59445561_l-2015In Russia most weddings last anywhere from two days to one week.  Russians traditionally wear the wedding ring on the ring finger of the right hand.

 

 

 

In Italy the groom carries a piece of iron to ward off envious people.  During the reception the men are supposed to kiss the bride for good luck, she also carries a satin pouch where guests can give envelopes of money for the chance to dance with her.  One of oldest traditions is the giving of candy-coated Jordan Almonds, they are meant to represent the bittersweet nature of marriage. assortment of sugared almonds and copy space        At the end of the day, the couple will break a vase or glass and the number of pieces are to represent the number of years they will be happily married.

 

 

 

No matter what the culture or tradition, weddings are a celebration of love and unity that are recognized and honored.

We would love to know what wedding traditions your family honors.  Let us know in the comments section.

Top 5 Montreal Wedding Venues for 2016

Getting married is as much for the celebration with family and friends as it is to tell the world you have found your one and only.  And what is a celebration without a fabulous venue?  Whether you are looking to enjoy an intimate affair with close friends and family or are inviting the all those second cousins your mother keeps insisting on, Montreal has you covered.

Top 5 Montreal Venues for 2016

From chateaus to chic hotels, we’ve got you covered in our list of the Top 5 Montreal wedding venues.

Auberge du Vieux Port-  For intimate groups accommodating 65 guests, the Auberge offers a dedicated wedding planner, custom menus, onsite valet parking, hotel buyout possibility and rooftop terrace.  From the hotels rooftop terrace you are able to take in the breathtaking views of the Saint Lawrence River and the Old Port.

Chateau Vaudreuil- From intimate to large gatherings, the ambiance of Chateau Vaudreuil will captivate you and your guests.  Situated on the shores of Lac des Deux-Montagnes, this 25 acre chateau boasts fabulous gardens and has received the distinction of 5 star and 4 diamonds.

The Nelligan- In old Montreal you will find the Nelligan, accommodating 200 guests or less. This gorgeous venue offers you a dedicated wedding planner, custom menus and a rooftop terrace. You will also receive a complimentary suite on your wedding night, chocolate strawberries in your suite, a complimentary menu tasting prior to the wedding and your wedding guests will receive preferential room rates.

The University Club of Montreal- This private club and wedding venue are located in a historic building in the heart of Montreal.  Known for their excellent service, elegant furnishings and succulent menu, the University Club of Montreal will make sure your event is elegant and cozy. Accommodating up to 90 guests for the ceremony and 150 for the reception while offering majestic backdrops for photographs make the University Club of Montreal a wonderful choice.

La Place D’armes-  With two ballrooms, accommodating from 120-250 guests, La Place D’armes and it’s richly appointed suites and banquet spaces will make sure you and your guests have an event to remember.  The onsite wedding planner, original stone walls, exquisitely prepared menus along with rooftop terrace will make sure your wedding will be a memorable one.

Have I missed a favorite wedding venue of yours, if so let me know in the comments section.

For a full list of Montreal’s Wedding Venues click on the link below.

http://www.letsgetmarried.com/montreal/montreal-wedding-reception-halls.aspx

How to Throw a Memorable Baby Shower in 5 Easy Steps

Congratulations, you’ve been tasked with throwing a baby shower, now what?  Here are 5 easy steps on how to throw a memorable baby shower.

Step 1.  Find out if the parents know the gender of their baby. Knowing the gender will help you in deciding the décor, colour palette and the theme of the baby shower.  You have the traditional option- pink for a girl, blue for boy and yellow or green for the “We want it to be a surprise!” baby.  Frogs, ducks, and owls are a great choice of theme for the gender neutral baby shower.

Step 2.  Choose a location, whether you will be holding it at your house or at a favorite restaurant you will want to make sure there is enough parking, seats, food and drink for all your invited guests.

Step 3.  Food and drinks or How to Throw a Memorable Baby Shower in 5 Easy Stepsa potluck is always a nice choice for a baby shower.  If it’s a family gathering you can ask guests to bring family favorites.  Asking the mom to be what she would like to snack on is always appreciated.  Having a cake or cupcakes decorated with your theme of choice is a nice addition to the party.  Don’t forget about plates, cups, napkins and cutlery.  Make sure you have enough drinks for everyone; water, juice, tea, and coffee will keep most guests happy.

Step 4.  Invitations, etiquette dictates you should send your invitations out at least 4 weeks before the day of the baby shower, this gives guests ample time to RSVP.  You have the choice of paper or email when sending out the invitations.  Email can be a great choice because you can add in links to things like the gift registry, potluck organizational web sites and maps for directions to the baby shower location.  Whether it will be a paper or electronic invitation, don’t forget to include any special requests you might have for your guests.  You may want to ask about any allergies your guests may have.

Step 5.  This is where the memorable part comes in, having a guest book poster and asking guests to leave the parents to be with words of encouragement, favorite quotes or helpful advice is truly something that will be treasured.  You can also ask each guest to bring a favorite childhood book for the new baby.

Games can also become a memorable part of the baby shower.  One fun game is to give each guest 3 clothes pins if one guest hears another say the word “baby” they get to take that person’s clothes pin.  The guest with the most clothes pins at the end of the shower receives a gift.  Another fun game is to pass around a roll of toilet paper and ask each guest to take off the amount they think would go around the belly of the mother to be, she then goes to each guest to see how correct their guess was.

Having small gifts for the winners of the games is a nice touch as well.  Scented candles, coffee, and chocolates make great gifts.

There you have it, how to create a memorable baby shower in 5 easy steps.  What are some of the memorable moments you’ve had at a baby shower?  Let us know in the comments section.

How To Make A Lasting Impression At Your Next Business Expo

Have you tried selling your products or services at an event? When deciding to participate at your first business expo, it’s important to research. Who will be there? Families or couples? Will it be an outdoor or indoor event? How big is the space? How will the expo be advertised? On social media, local newspapers or magazines? What will the cost be?

There is a lot to think about before you jump into your first expo. Opportunities to showcase your business are out there but which ones are the right ones for you and your business.   Below I’ll be listing some key elements to consider before, during as well as a post-event follow up checklist.

I hope this list will help in planning your first successful business event!

Business Expo

QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE THE EXPO:

  • When is it being held?
  • Where is it being held?
  • Who will be attending? Families, couples?
  • How will the organizers advertise? In local newspapers, on social media, in flyers?
  • Is this a yearly event? If so, does the location change year to year?
  • How many months in advance will you have to register for the event? Often times there is a limited number of spots.
  • How big is your vendor space? Is it a booth or table? How big is the booth? How long are the tables? Are table coverings offered? How many chairs are available? Can you hang on material on the walls? Is there room for an easel or banner?
  • Where will your space be located on the floor plan?
  • How much is each space? Location of your booth or table is important.
  • Is this a free event for guests or is there an entrance fee? If a fee is charged, will there be an early bird special? What about a VIP pass?
  • Will swag bags be offered to the first x amount of guests?
  • When will you be able to set up your booth? Can you bring material and leave it there overnight? Is it in a secure environment?
  • Will electrical outlets be available?

THINGS TO THINK ABOUT FOR THE DAY OF THE EXPO:

  • Get a good night’s sleep
  • Prepare your outfit, wear layers and wear comfortable shoes
  • How will you advertise for this expo? On your social media pages? Email marketing? Word of mouth advertising at networking events?
  • Always stand in front of your booth or table. This will enable you to engage with visitors.
  • If you have products or a service to sell, how do you plan on setting up your table?
  • Will you be offering a giveaway?
  • Will you need an iPad or laptop at your table?
  • Business cards are important to have that day
  • Are you planning on hanging this up if walls are available?
  • If you're a solopreneur, will you have an assistant for the day?
  • If you’re offering a promotion of the day, will it be advertised in a flyer? Or will you have a sign at your table with your promotion?
  • If you have a newsletter, how do you get people to sign up?
  • Which product samples will you be displaying?
  • Bring water and snacks for the day
  • If you’re a solopreneur and don't have an assistant, make a  ‘back in a few minutes' sign to leave your table for bathroom breaks or meals. Or ask your neighbor if they can watch your table. In my experience most people are very kind and will help you.
  • How will people purchase your product or service? A Square reader is a good option.
  • Bring your chargers for your phone, tablet, laptop etc.
  • Bring pens, pencils or sharpie pens for your table
  • If you’re offering a raffle, a little easel with the announcement works well
  • Make raffle cards for people to enter their name and email or phone number
  • Bring a small container for raffle cards entries
  • Will you need order forms?
  • How are you advertising your prices? Will you be offering a special sale for the day?
  • Bring extra tape, sticky tack, scissors
  • Raffle at end of event - ask host + picture
  • Where will your company sign be displayed? Will you have a sign? Does it need to be in different languages?
  • Kleenex and an extension cord are handy
  • A little bowl of candy or chocolates are a nice touch
  • Bring a cash box and change
  • For women, bring an extra pair of flat shoes

POST-EXPO WRAP-UP

Once your event is over you will want to document these points that will help you determine if this event was successful and lessons learned.

  • Was it successful or not? Do you plan on participating in other events?
  • Did you gain clients? Did you meet potential clients?
  • On average, how many people do you think came to your table?
  • If you held a raffle, contact the winner to congratulate them and discuss their prize.
  • Send a thank you note to new clients
  • Process orders and follow up with clients
  • If people signed up to your newsletter, thank them and offer them a special
  • Display pictures and successes on social media
  • Was it profitable?
  • Talk to other vendors and find out what worked and didn't work for them

I would love to hear how your first business expo went.  Please feel free to share in the comments below.

Our Favorite Knock Knock Jokes Of All Time

When my son Matteo was around 4 years old my husband started teaching him knock-knock jokes. He giggled and giggled and they laughed and it became an everyday joke fest. There were knock-knock jokes in the car, at dinner, at bedtime and anytime he wanted to play. We also invented a bunch of silly made up jokes.

When it came time to find a name for my banner company, I started a list and started brainstorming with my husband. All of a sudden he yelled out Knock Knock Banners! We both loved it and loved how it tied in to our family.

Knock Knock Jokes

We found my step-daughter’s book The Clown Arounds Go On Vacation by Joanna Cole but when we started reading it to our son we didn’t realize it had knock-knock jokes in the story.

Knock KnockClown Arounds
Who’s There?
Philip!
Philip Who?
Philip the gas tank, please.

Knock Knock
Who’s There?
Lettuce
Lettuce Who?
Lettuce in it’s cold out here!

Knock Knock
Who’s There?
Boo!
Boo Who?
Don’t cry, it’s only a joke.

 

It’s worth adding this book to your collection. My son has loved it since he was little!

I’ve compiled a list of our all time favorite knock knock jokes. If your little one is anything like mine they will love these.

Knock knock
Who's there?
Howard!
Howard who?
Howard I know?
Knock knock
Who's there?
Beets!
Beets who?
Beets me!
Knock knock
Who's there?
Ice cream!
Ice cream who?
Ice cream if you don't let me in
Knock knock
Who's there?
Cows!
Cows who?
Cows go 'moo' not who!
Knock knock
Who's there?
Tank!
Tank who?
You're welcome!
Knock knock
Who’s there?
Luke!
Luke who?
Luke through the keyhole and you can see!
Knock knock
Who's there?
Wooden shoe!
Wooden shoe who?
Wooden shoe like to hear another joke?
Knock, knock
Who's There?
Ashe
Ashe who?
Bless you!
Knock, knock
Who's there?
Nobel
Nobel who?
No bell, that's why I knocked!
Knock Knock!
Who's there?
Cowsgo.
Cowsgo who?
No they don't, cowsgo moo.
Knock Knock!
Who's there?
Doris!
Doris who?
Doris locked, that's why I knocked.
Knock knock!
Who's there?
Water?
Water who?
Water way to answer the door!
Knock knock!
Who's there?
Dewey.
Dewey who?
Dewey have to keep telling silly jokes.
Knock Knock!
Who's there?
Cash.
Cash who?
I knew you were a nut!
Knock, knock
Who's there?
Dwayne
Dwayne who?
Dwayne the bathtub. It is overflowing.
Knock, knock
Who's there?
Nana
Nana who?
Nana your business!
Knock, knock
Who's there?
Philip
Philip who?
Philip up my glass please, I'm thirsty!
Knock, knock
Who's there?
Dwain
Dwain who?
Dwain the bathtub, I'm drowning.

Which one is your favorite knock-knock joke? The one that your little one loves to tell over and over again? Feel free to share your jokes with us below.

Top 6 Ways to Make Your Next Corporate Event a Huge Success

I was fortunate to have organized many events when I worked in the corporate world and I had a ton of fun doing them! Luckily the events always ran smoothly due to great teamwork and proper planning. And we can’t forget the food! :)

There are many elements that make a corporate event successful and I would like to share 6 that I found really helped keep everything on track.

Top 6 ways to make your next corporate event a huge success

  1. PLANNING
  • Planning ahead is key to a successful corporate event. Here are some key questions to ask yourself:
    • When will the event take place?
    • What size budget do you have?
    • What will be the title/theme of the event?
    • What event topics do you want to cover?
    • Who will be speaking? Will guest speakers be invited?
    • Where do you want to hold the meeting? Close to a local office or an off-site location?
    • Who do want to attend? How many people do you need to accommodate?
    • Will a restaurant outside of the venue be chosen?
    • How do you want to promote your event?
  1. MARKETING
  • Here are some marketing ideas to consider:
    • Which Social Media platforms will you be using to promote your event?
    • Will you be needing high-quality corporate event banners?
    • Will you be using print media?
    • Will you need a photographer or videographer?
    • Will you be live-streaming the event?
  1. SET A LOCATION
  • The location of the venue is extremely important to attract attendees and to make it a fun event. Here are some things to consider:
    • Size of the conference room and layout (U-shape, round tables, etc)
    • Audio visuals-podium, microphone, screen, pointers
    • If a hotel is chosen, will you have preferred rates and room blocks available?
    • Will there be a check-in table and name tags?
    • Will each table have water, note pads, pens?
    • Is the venue close to restaurants, sites to visit, shopping?
    • Will there be a table set up for refreshments - coffee, tea, water, juice and snacks throughout the day?
  1. AGENDA
  • The agenda is key for your event to stay on schedule. Here are some tips to stay on track:
    • Conference title, date, location, phone number and contact person should be well indicated.
    • Start and end times for each speaker clearly shown.
    • Ensure there are enough breaks throughout the event so attendees can stretch their legs, network, respond to emails or phone calls.
    • A facilitator should be assigned to address any concerns throughout the event.
    • Who will be taking notes throughout the event? This is highly recommended when questions come up and need to be answered after the conference by specific individuals.
  1. QUESTION & ANSWER PERIOD
  • It’s important to have a block of time at the end of the conference for an overall Q&A session and suggestions for the next event:
    • A survey is a sure way to get people’s confidential feedback. This can be done by handing out a printed copy to be returned before the end of the event or by sending out an electronic survey.
  1. POST CONFERENCE DEBRIEF
  • Debriefing after a conference is essential to evaluate every element of the conference:
    • Review survey results.
    • What went well and what can be improved.
    • Will this conference be an annual event?
    • Did outside speakers bring added-value?
    • Respond to unanswered questions.
    • Review of the location, venue, accommodations, food

I hope you found these helpful. What would you add to this list?