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5 ways for children to celebrate National Grandparents Day

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Marian McQuade was an expert in grandparenting. A West Virginia mother of 15, she had 43 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.

If McQuade’s name doesn’t ring a bill, her work no doubt will. She was the founder of National Grandparents Day, which President Jimmy Carter signed into law in 1978.

National Grandparents Day is held on the first Sunday after Labor Day (Sept. 13 in 2015; Sept. 11 in 2016; Sept. 10 in 2017). September was chosen to signify the autumn years of life, according to Legacy Project.

To help celebrate the holiday, the Connells Maple Lee Kids Club offers five activities that children can do for or with their grandparents:

  1. Send flowers: OK, this is an obvious one, but our founder, Hannah “Mom” Royer, was a doting grandmother and much loved by her grandchildren, as was her husband, Lester.
  2. Make a card: Draw a pretty picture and write a note to tell your grandparents how much they mean to you.
  3. Interview them: Grandma and grandpa have seen and experienced a lot of things in their lives. This handy interview form can help get you started. Listen closely to their answers because you can learn a lot.
  4. Trace your family tree: Here’s a family tree chart that will make it easy to identify the people in your family by generation.
  5. Read a book together: The kids club is a big believer in the power of reading. Here’s a terrific reading list to get you started.

Of course, there is an endless list of things that grandchildren and grandparents can do together.

What are some of your favorites?

 

Outdoor weddings, weather and having a Plan B

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On this particular September wedding day, the misty weather presented some logistical challenges for the bride and groom.

The ceremony that had been planned for a beautiful garden had to be moved indoors on short notice. A ballroom had to be transformed into a beautiful garden setting, complete with an arch and flower-festooned aisle.

As they say, into every life some rain must fall. And it was a good reminder that weather is one variable that no one controls, no matter how good of a wedding planner he or she is.

If you want an outdoor wedding, it’s best to have a Plan B just in case. We all know how variable the weather can be in Ohio, after all.

A number of years ago, the Farmers’ Almanac solicited submissions for its “Worst Wedding Weather Contest.” After Texas and Florida, Ohio tied Pennsylvania and Indiana for the most submissions.

Couples from those states “have experienced the soggiest, snowiest, windiest, most hurricane-hampered and hail-ridden wedding weather,” according to the Farmers’ Almanac.

MANY FACTORS TO CONSIDER

So what should you consider when it comes to creating that Plan B for your outdoor wedding? There are many factors, none more important than the safety and well-being of the wedding couple and their guests.

An article from about.com wedding expert Nina Callaway offers “10 tips for the perfect outdoor wedding.”

Of course, we’re pretty protective of the flowers, too.

We were on hand for that misty September wedding mentioned above. Being a perishable product, flowers require a tender touch. While do-it-yourself can be tempting when it comes to flowers (and other aspects of a wedding), it’s also comforting when a professional is on hand, in good weather and bad.

A florist will ensure that your flowers look their beautiful best. Unlike the weather, this is an aspect of your wedding that you can control.

Third-grader Landon Brown wins Connells Maple Lee Kids Club birthday card design contest

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His mother describes Landon Brown as an “outdoors kid” who enjoys bugs and creeks, riding his bike, playing soccer. The Galena third-grader also has a creative side.

“He’s more creative with Legos and models,” said Lynnee Brown, “but he does love to draw.”

His drawing of a cake, balloons and presents was plenty good enough to win the Connell Maple Lee Flowers & Gifts Kids Club birthday card design contest.

In fact, it will grace the electronic card that Connells Maple Lee Kids Club members will receive on their birthdays in the coming year. For Landon’s effort, he will receive a flower delivery on his next birthday.

The kids club is free to ages 5 to 12. With parental permission, children may register for the kids club at any Connells Maple Lee store or online at www.cmlflowers.com/kidsclub.

Connells Maple Lee Kids Club celebrates start of new school year with free event Aug. 22

 

2015 Back to School

Before they go back to school, they can go back to the Connells Maple Lee Kids Club.

We’ll celebrate the start of a new school year with a free kids club event Aug. 22 in each of our stores.

Children ages 5 to 12 will have an opportunity to create an arrangement adorned with a “back-to-school” stick-in. Participants also will receive a free balloon.

Time slots are available at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Registration is required by calling your nearest Connells Maple Lee store.

Connells Maple Lee donates $1,000 to Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research

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Connells Maple Lee Flowers & Gifts has donated $1,000 to the Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James).

The donation reflects proceeds from the sale of Connells Maple Lee’s Power of Pink bouquet, which is available year-round. With every bouquet sold, the florist earmarks $10 for breast cancer organizations.

The Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research supports breast cancer research, including genetics, as well as technology needs for research, patient care, medical education and training on breast cancer at the OSUCCC – James.

Photo: Andrew Royer, regional vice president, Connells Maple Lee Flowers & Gifts, and Erika Beasley, assistant director, community partners program at the OSUCCC-James.

Kids club: books for families to read aloud together

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As we noted in the June 2015 issue of the Connells Maple Lee Kids Club newsletter, Buds, it’s important to keep reading and learning even during summer vacation. Here’s an expanded version of a list of books that families can read aloud together that we touched on in Buds, courtesy of our friends at Bexley Public Library:

“Mr. Popper’s Penguins” by Richard and Florence Atwater
The unexpected delivery of a large crate containing an Antarctic penguin changes the life and fortunes of Mr. Popper, a house painter obsessed by dreams of the Polar regions.

“The End of the Beginning” by Avi
Avon the snail and Edward, a take-charge ant, set off together on a journey to an undetermined destination in search of unspecified adventures.

“The Penderwicks” by Jeanne Birdsall
While vacationing with their father in the Berkshire Mountains, four lovable sisters, ages four through twelve, share adventures with a local boy, much to the dismay of his snobbish mother.

“A Bear Called Paddington” by Michael Bond
A very small bear found by Mr. and Mrs. Brown at Paddington Station becomes a member of the family.

“The Mouse and the Motorcycle” by Beverly Cleary
A reckless young mouse named Ralph makes friends with a boy in room 215 of the Mountain View Inn and discovers the joys of motorcycling.

“My Father’s Dragon” by Ruth Stiles Gannett
A young boy runs away from home to rescue an abused baby dragon held captive to serve as a free 24-hour, seven-days-a-week ferry for the lazy wild animals living on Wild Island.

“The Year of Billy Miller” by Kevin Henkes
Seven-year-old Billy Miller starts second grade with a bump on his head and a lot of worries, but by the end of the year he has developed good relationships with his teacher, his little sister, and his parents and has learned many important lessons.

“Toys Go Out” by Emily Jenkins
Lumphy is a stuffed buffalo. StingRay is a stuffed stingray. And Plastic… well, Plastic isn’t quite sure what she is. They all belong to the Little Girl who lives on the high bed with the fluffy pillows. A very nice person to belong to.

“Pippi Longstocking” by Astrid Lindgren
Annalina’s diary entries reflect her feelings and experiences as she goes from being afraid to go to kindergarten to loving it during her first month of school.

“Gooney Bird Greene” by Lois Lowry
A most unusual new student who loves to be the center of attention entertains her teacher and fellow second graders by telling absolutely true stories about herself, including how she got her name.

“Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle” by Betty MacDonald
From her upside-down house, the eccentric Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle issues to parents her marvelous cures for such common children’s diseases as Won’t-Put-Away-Toys-itis, Answerbackism, and Fighter-Quarrelitis.

“The World of Winnie-the-Pooh” by A.A. Milne
The world of Pooh is a world of enchantment. It is a world where Winnie-the-Pooh and his friends Piglet, Eeyore, Tigger, Kanga and the others share unforgettable adventures with Christopher Robin.

Connells Maple Lee Kids Club birthday card design contest runs now through July 17

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We’re looking for budding artists to enter our annual birthday card design contest.

The winning design will adorn the Connells Maple Lee Kids Club birthday card, which will be emailed to all kids club members on their birthdays. (You can see last year’s winning card to the left.)

The artist will receive free flowers on his or her birthday.

The contest is open to children ages 5 to 12. The deadline to enter is July 17.

The entry form may be downloaded at www.cmlflowers.com/kidsclub and dropped off at the nearest Connells Maple Lee: 2408 E. Main St. (Route 40), Bexley, 614-237-8653; 2033 Stringtown Road, Grove City, 614-539-4000; and 8573 Owenfield Drive, Powell, 740-548-4082.

Connells Maple Lee Kids Club event June 20 to kick off annual ‘Stems Hunger’ food drive

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Our annual food drive – Connells Maple Lee Stems Hunger – will take place June 20-27 to benefit the Mid-Ohio Foodbank.

Connells Maple Lee Kids Club will help out with a special event on June 20 for children ages 5 to 12.

They are asked to donate a non-perishable food item as the price of admission and to bring an empty food can to fill with flowers and take home.

Participants also will have an opportunity to enter the kids club’s birthday card design contest and to create a Father’s Day card.

Time slots are available at 10 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Registration is required by calling the nearest Connells Maple Lee: 2408 E. Main St. (Route 40), Bexley, 614-237-8653; 2033 Stringtown Road, Grove City, 614-539-4000; and 8573 Owenfield Drive, Powell, 740-548-4082.

 

Connells Maple Lee Stems Hunger food drive returns June 20-27

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Connells Maple Lee Stems Hunger, our annual food drive, will return June 20-27 to benefit the Mid-Ohio Foodbank.

Customers who donate a non-perishable food item during the event will receive a free carnation, up to six flowers per family per visit.

The food drive will be the theme of our June 20 Connells Maple Lee Kids Club event; more details to come on that in the days ahead.

Our friends at Drayer Physical Therapy Institute will be helping us again this year, collecting food at the company’s outpatient physical therapy centers in Grove City and Hilliard.

Administrative professionals loyal, social media savvy: survey

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When bosses want to tweet, they only need to turn to their administrative assistants for help.

Some 84.3 percent of administrative professionals are social media savvy and are generally more tech-savvy than their bosses, according to Staples’ fourth annual survey tied to Administrative Professionals Day on April 22.

Among other survey highlights:

  • Admins also rated higher than bosses when it comes to creative problem solving, sense of humor, being a team player, and likelihood of being described as a friend.
  • Nearly 46 percent of admins have been with their companies for six or more years.
  • When admins were asked who they would most enjoy as their boss, historical figures topped the list in the United States. Movie stars were preferred by their Canadian counterparts.

Meanwhile, nearly eight out of 10 survey participants said their company does a good job of making administrative assistants feel appreciated. April 22 provides another opportunity.