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Pool Party Time!

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There’s nothing like a pool party on a hot day! Great food mixes with fun with your friends mixes with the refreshing setting of the pool, making it the perfect summer get-together. So now that the warm months are here, it’s the perfect time to throw one. Putting one together at the last minute can seem a little tricky, but with a few key ingredients, you’ll be able to throw the perfect event for you and your friends!

First, make sure to plan a venue. If you have your own pool, then you’re all set, but if you’re wanting to book a public pool for an event, then make sure to call ahead and make the reservation.

Next, plan your guest list. You can’t have a party without people, and if you are organizing a last-minute party, it’s important to first identify who you want at your party and get invitations sent out to them so that everyone can set aside the time to make it. Put together your list of invitees, and then get to work letting them know the important details of where, when and what they should bring. While you can call or text everyone on your list, it may be easier to create an event on social media and invite everyone through that.

Don’t forget to remind everyone of what they should bring. For a pool party you might want to suggest a bathing suit, goggles, towel, sunblock and a hat.

With the guest list in place, it’s now time to plan the menu. Food is a key part of any party, and swimming can really amp up the appetite. Stock up on munchies and finger food style appetizers, as these will allow people to snack intermittently while enjoying the water and visiting with friends. For the main course, consider going with an easy option like hot dogs and hamburgers, corn on the cob and a variety of side salads and dishes. To make things even easier, make your party a potluck and have your guests bring along their specialty dishes. Don’t forget to stock up on drinks and pick up a fun dessert to complete the meal plan!

To make things easier, pick up paper plates, napkins and disposable cups and cutlery. You don’t want to run out of any of these, and you don’t want to be stuck doing a huge amount of dishes once everyone goes home.

Because it’s a pool party, it’s already going to be fun and entertaining, but you can make it even better by planning a few entertainment ideas. Plan to play a few group games in the pool, whether it’s a classic such as “Marco Polo” or water tag or something new and silly. Use the Internet to search for fun new ideas. If you can get a volleyball net, water volleyball can be a great group sport, and you can encourage a little friendly competition.

Don’t forget a little party atmosphere either! Download some new music and put together a party playlist on your phone or MP3 player and bring out a few speakers, or bring a radio out to the pool to get the energy up for a little partying!

You may also want to run out and buy a few cheap pool toys such as noodles or floaties for people to enjoy.

With these few main ingredients, you should be all ready to throw a pool party to remember! Rally a few friends to help with setup and get ready to have a great time!

June 19, 2015 |

Fun Things to Do Besides Games at a Baby Shower

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So many baby showers seem to revolve around the same games. If you’re looking to break away from the tradition of playing games there’s actually a lot of low cost, and low maintenance activities you can do that’ll keep your guests entertained. Here’s a list of fun and memorable things to do at a baby shower that doesn’t involve games, opening gifts, and eating.

Gender Reveal 

One of the most exciting things to do besides games at a baby shower is to have the gender reveal right there at the party. Have your doctor write down boy or girl on a piece of paper, put it in an envelope, and give it to the person in charge of the baby shower. They can create a fun way to reveal the gender at the baby shower.

One way to reveal the gender is to have the inside of the cake blue or pink. They could also fill a big box with blue or pink balloons. At the party the parent, or parents will open the box to have the gender revealing balloons float out.

Video Message

With modern technology making a video is easy these days. Throughout the party have each guest leave a message to the baby on camera. In the message they can talk about the first time they met the mother, their hopes for the baby, or fond stories about the parents.

Wish Book 

On a table have an empty notebook. Throughout the baby shower guests can write down things you should do with your newborn during the first year of their life. Guests could also write words of encouragement, and words of wisdom. It’s a great way for people to spread their knowledge of parenthood while showing how much they care for you.

Onesie Signing

A fun activity that doubles as a keepsake is having a baby onesie signing. If you know the name of your future child have it put on a plain white onesie. Throughout the baby shower guests can sign the onesie. Once the party is over you can frame, and hang it in your newborn’s room. If you don’t have a name yet, get a white onesie with a cute saying already on it like “You’re Loved.”

Door Prizes

Another fun thing to do besides games at a baby shower is to hand out prizes. You don’t have to play games to give out thank you gifts to guests. Once someone walks into the baby shower have them write down their name on a piece a paper and put it in a bowl. While the mother-to-be is opening gifts she can pull a name out of the bowl. When a name is called the person has to give their best parenting advice for a prize.

Craft Table

Guests can decorate solid colored onesies with cute iron-on patches. At a craft store you can find hearts, animals, and more. On the craft table lay out the onesies and patches. The guests can choose which patches they want to iron onto a onesie. Make sure to have an iron and ironing board set up so they can be created at the baby shower.

At the party you could also create a baby shower scrapbook. All you need is a Polaroid camera, blank pieces of scrapbook paper, and different colored markers. The mother will take a picture with each person at the party using the Polaroid camera. They can paste the picture onto a blank piece of scrapbook paper. Around the picture they can decorate or write a note to the baby.

April 22, 2015 |

The Benefits of Having Your Child’s Birthday Party at Home

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A self-hosted birthday party lets you and your child build a wonderland that is uniquely your own. You get to go on a planning adventure together, adding every piece of magic until you have an event that expresses both of your personalities. The result is not enjoyed solely on the day itself, only to vanish in the aftermath of candy wrappings and leftover red velvet cupcakes.  Instead, the organizing phase creates a new bond with your child and memories that don’t disappear quite as easily as a single day at the local picnic grounds would.

Control, Creativity, and Simplicity

Children often have more fun with their gift wrappings than their gifts. For them, life is all about the fun, not the cost and frills. Filtered into party philosophy, that means they only want to feel treasured–and do plenty of splashing and bouncing. Keeping things simple is unlikely to spoil the fun and nor are mistakes. Lack of caring will, though, and that’s what party hosting companies are good at.

Breathe deeply and remember that planning is a complicated odyssey for every mom. When you’re going the home route, you have the power to make the party as small or daunting as your whims allow. Your cost and space issues are within your control, because the sheer enormity of the party vending industry means even the smallest and simplest razzle-dazzle can be ordered, paid for (economically) and forgotten about until the day arrives.

False Economy

Your purse is one of the first things that is going to start heating up in your pocket when you think about hosting a home party. The general, but false, consensus is that hosting at a restaurant is lighter on the bank account. This is not always the case. Your restaurant has a menu with prices that don’t change according to your preferences, no matter how sly your strategizing is. If you’re committed to saving, a self-hosted party will morph to your budget through Scrooge-worthy planning.

Decorations and snacks are your primary cost concerns. Décor is an easy hurdle to leap over. Bedazzles and a week’s worth of art projects can whip up enough tissue flowers and streamer decorations to make even a seven-year-old girl feel she’s had her share of Technicolor and glitz. As for the snacks, no mom gets away with offering an empty smorgasbord, but when planning, remember how your kids spent their last party: odds are that the attention was on the water slide, not the party favors. Many a mother has ended a party wondering why she baked more than one cake. Focus on the fun and penny-pinch on the things that were ignored at your last party.

Building the Fun

When you find an outside host for your child’s birthday party, someone else creates the landscape, atmosphere, and games. Your home party is your opportunity to sparkle, and your child’s enthusiasm will be your inspiration. If you want a magician, you’re the one with the ‘abracadabra’ that makes that happen exactly as you’d like it to. If your child is a water baby, no restaurant manager with a face like Voldemort’s is leering over you saying, “Well…no.”

If you’re looking into the mirror and noticing your lack of resemblance to Martha Stewart, there are ways to kick your intimidation to the curb. You needn’t stuff your own invitation envelopes or bake your own shortcakes. That’s what vendors are for. Rentals and planners are all a terrified mom needs to replace her Xanax:  Today’s businesses do everything from delivering the jumping castle to creating the entire scene, theme and all.

March 11, 2015 |

14 Ideas for the Perfect Valentine’s at Home

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Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to focus on that special someone. It can get a little distracting when you are not the only couple out with the same ideas. Do something a little different for the night. Don’t go out with the rest of the crowds, stay home and have a romantic and intimate evening just the two of you.

Create the mood. A perfect night at home starts with the setting. Set out candles and turn those bright lights off. Set out love notes, hang them from the ceiling, set them on table to look at as you eat.

Cook your meal together. Choose a menu that that is unique, one that you both can make every year. Turn it into a tradition reserved for Valentine’s Day. A bonus, you will never have to worry about you’ll do for dinner on this special day again.

Get the right movie. A perfect night at home needs the perfect movies. If you are going to have a movie night pick a couple great movies for the occasion. Don’t go too sappy with the romance. Choose a movie that you will both enjoy.

Turn up the tunes and get on your feet. Make a playlist before your special night. Turn on the soft music and enjoy your meal then turn up the music and dance the night away. Change it up, don’t just slow dance, get down and have a little fun.

Spend the night somewhere different. Plan a romantic evening in the living room and end it there. Clear the floor and spend the night there. If you have a fireplace set a fire, roast some marshmallows, and cuddle up with a book.

Make it a game night. Get out those dusty old board games and have a game night. Pick a couple of your favorites, add in some fun romantic twists to make the night extra fun.

Plan for a nice massage. Get some massage oil and give each other a full body massage. Spend time on each other.

Revisit your childhood. Surprise your special someone with a surprise attack when they get in. Have a Nerf gun ready and leave one for them to find. Then, let the battle begin.

Have a spa night for two. Plan a bubble bath, a foot massage, and pamper each other.

Take this night to try a new hobby. Plan to do something new together. Pick out a new project you can do together. Think about something you both may find interest in, painting, reading, or building something.

Have a dessert contest. Both of you take a turn making your best dessert or desserts. Then try and pick a winner.

Turn it all off. Get back to the basics. Don’t let each other get distracted with social media and other things. Turn the phones off, turn the television off, and turn the lights off. Light some candles and just enjoy each others company.

Dress to impress. You are not going out this evening. Take that opportunity to dress in something that will really get your dates attention. You can use your imagination, dress up or dress down.

Send them on the hunt. Present your Valentine’s Day gift in a fun way. Make them find it. Send them on a hunt and leave them clues to guide them around the house until they find it. That special gift could be you!

February 19, 2015 |

12 Ways to Make a Party Fun for Everyone

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Planning a party where the guest consist of both adults and kids can be tricky. You don’t want the party to be geared too much towards one group. If the atmosphere is too stale for kids, they will get bored. However, if you focus too much on making it fun for kids, the adults may find the party a bit “childish”.

The best way to make the party fun for all is to find the perfect balance. There are many things you can do that are fun for each age group. The best way is to keep things natural and simple. Here are a few great tips to help you plan that next party.

Plan ahead. Make sure that you are equip with plenty of toilet paper, wipes, napkins, and all the necessities. Keep them handy too.

Set the right tone. Pick a theme that is non-age and non-gender specific. Having a theme makes things easier to plan and organize. Try something such as a game theme, a beach theme, or a winter theme.

Clear the place of breakables. Kids will have more fun if they aren’t being told to watch out or no the whole time. You and the parents can also have a better time if you aren’t worried and they aren’t walking behind the kids all the time.

Set a flexible time-frame. You have to work around bedtimes, nap times, and still allow time for people to get ready. Make you time-frame broad and allow guest to arrive and leave when they need.

Choose a space big enough. You won’t want kids cramped in with adults. Choose a setting that provides space and a chance to divide up a little. Pick a few rooms to escape to that have things for kids to do while adults converse.

Keep the food simple. When it comes to food, keep it simple. One idea is a pot-luck, supply the main dish and have everyone add to it. Or you can go with a taco bar or hot dog bar. This way everyone can build-their-own. Have plenty of finger food.

Turn on the music. Having the music on and up will add to the atmosphere. Create a playlist that has a great mix suitable for all ages. Throw in some oldies but goodies with some new and hip jams. A little bit something for everyone will keep the party going well.

Recruit the help of a babysitter. Have someone at the party that is great with kids, and that doesn’t mind hanging out with them. Having someone with their eyes on the kids allows the parents to relax.

Plan a few activities. Create a few different spaces, one for kids, one for adults, and one common area for both. Have a “movie room” playing family friendly flicks. Chances are this is a space both groups may hang out. Keep kids busy with a craft table, a bounce house, and some games. Adult spaces an be socializing and relaxing.

Make it a pool party. If you have a pool there is nothing better for both groups. Both kids and adults love hanging out by the pool and swimming. Just be sure supervision happens at all times.

Be prepared. Accidents can and will happen. Don’t stress if they do. Kids will make messes and so can adults.

Relax, have fun, and enjoy. Above all, relax. Your guest will have more fun if you are comfortable and enjoying yourself.

Follow these tips and you will have a fun and successful party. Both the kids and the adults will enjoy themselves and so will you!

This post was brought to you by Family Fun Entertainment.

January 22, 2015 |

Why Invest in Commercial Video Production for the Web?

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Video is a major part of online marketing and content development. It is a perfect platform for people, business, non-profits, and any other online entity that wants to reach people in a personal way that text can’t touch. For businesses, the value of video cannot be understated. It reaches more people in a way that makes them more likely to become leads and customers.

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Why invest in commercial video production for the web?

  • Video offers variety to in website content and improves a website’s search engine rankings. One of the lesser known factors that search engines use to rank websites is the variety of website content it presents. Search engines, Google in particular, want to give their users the most relevant, high quality content associated with their keyword. When a website offers multiple forms of high quality content around a keyword, search engines pay attention and give it a high ranking. That means more visitors to the website.
  • Video attracts a wider audience. Videos are easy to share. When people like a video’s content, they are likely to share it with their social media followers. Video is also easy to upload to share sites like YouTube. Mobile users love video because it does not require them to read through page after page of tiny text. A simple video can reach more people than dozens of pages of text.
  • Video offers a fresh way to speak with your audience. Some information is a natural fit for video. A how-to presentation is a great example. Almost anything, though, can be presented in a visual way. Breaking down a complex subject with the help of visuals can make it simpler for people to understand. People are more likely to keep that information and be able to recall it weeks later. That is perfect for companies trying to build their brand and online marketing presence.
  • Video gets both quality and quantity backlinks. Search engines look for how many external sites link back to your website. When people like a business’s video, they will link to it from their website. When they share it on social media, the links they offer also improve the backlink count. All of this helps to improve the search engine rankings for a particular web page as well as the website overall. Higher rankings mean more visitors and more potential customers.
  • Video keeps people on a company’s site longer. Studies have long proven that the longer time a visitor spends on a website the higher the chances that person will become a lead or become a customer. With video, you are going to see those higher stay times and should see higher lead generation or sales rates as a result. The key is to position the video in a way where people viewing it can easily sign up to become a lead or buy the product featured in the video.

Many businesses think that video is too expensive or complicated to put together. The fact is that video production for the web is becoming more affordable all the time as demand goes up. With so many companies producing text-based content, video is one way a company or organization can stand out from the crowd. It offers a personal way to connect with potential customers. It is the “wow” factor that makes people pay attention.

Are you interested in commercial video production services for your website? Contact the award winning Arc Light Digital Media for a free consultation.

December 20, 2013 |
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