Archive for June, 2010


It’s true…we all like things that go B-O-O-M!  For as long as fireworks have been around, photographers have been taking dark & blurry photos of them.  Fireworks photography may seem difficult, but if you follow some simple rules, you are guaranteed some great results. 

Bring a tripod:  Good fireworks photos require long exposures, and the best way to get them is to use a tripod.  If you don’t have a tripod, use something to brace your camera on or against to keep it steady. 

Bring a flashlight, charged batteries, and plenty of empty memory cards:  Let’s face it, you are going to change your camera settings and since it will be dark out, you will need a small flashlight to see your camera.  Don’t forget to also make room on your memory card “before” you go out to shoot fireworks, or you will find yourself kicking yourself that you missed some great shots, or even the grand finale!

Find a great location early:  Once the fireworks start, you probably won’t have the chance to move around much in the crowd.  Look for a good spot that is not obstructed with any trees or buildings.  Fireworks over the water will reflect, so this will be some great photos. 

Turn OFF your flash:  No matter what kind of camera you may have, turn off the flash.  A flash from a camera will ruin firework photos. 

Drop your ISO to 50 or 100:  Your digital camera has several user-selectable light sensitive settings.  The highery your ISO, the more sensitive your camera is to light.  Normally this means you want to use a higher ISO in dark settings.  An ISO setting of 100 is the best bet. 

Use your camera’s fireworks setting:  Many cameras already have a “fireworks” scene mode built in.  Experiment with this setting, by taking some photos with and without to see which one you like the best. 

Take lots of pictures, be creative and have fun!   Your One-Stop Shop for all your Seasonal Needs


Are you stressed out about Halloween coming?  Don’t be.  Most people don’t even start thinking about anything Halloweenish until September, but we have news for you!  If you are one of the many who do this, you may find yourself out of luck when looking for any Halloween props & accessories for your home haunt.   We wrote about this in an earlier post and thought that it would be beneficial to mention it again, that the best time to start stocking up on your Halloween Props, Ghouls, Tombsstones, Fog Machines, Light Shows, and even the simpliest home decor is right NOW!  Most suppliers are stocking up as we speak on all of their Halloween items and if you wait until September you will find that most items will be out of stock.  It’s true that all local retailers will stock their shelves when Halloween nears, but what you don’t know is that each store only carries a few items of each prop or decor, and when they’re gone, they’re gone.  They don’t restock.   So, if you are into Halloween as much as we are, NOW is the best time to start planning on what you want to purchase, then grab it before it’s gone! 

Don’t stress out about Halloween!  Sometimes, all it takes is the simpliest props for your Home Haunt to make a spectacular scene.  Shown here, we have a nice RIP Tombstone and a simple groundbreaker prop, and with a little lighting effect of an amber flood light, we created this spooky scene in our own haunt.  Using blue flood lights will also create a nice creepy effect on your props as well.  Don’t forget that when you use black lights on your props, make sure to use them only on props that are mostly white,  as this will make your props glow.  Even if you have a dark colored prop with white eyes, the black light will make the eyes glow too.  So, don’t stress out about Halloween being only 128 days away, make the best use of your time and think simple, but effective uses of your time with some of our tips and tricks. 

If you have any questions, or comments that we can help you with, let us know or contact us at   Website:

We’re your One-Stop Shop for all your Seasonal needs

Dimensions:  30″ x 17″

Non-skid backing, 100% Coir
Add a little fun to your front porch with this adorable snowman shaped coir doormat!  Three snowmen are lined up and ready to greet your guests.   Price: $16.99

Dimensions:  8.5″ x 5″

Box includes One Evil Pumpkin Fogger, UL Approved Adaptor.  Uses regular tap water, and has creepy color-changing light effects.   Price:  $49.99

Dimensions:  7″ x 6″ x 7 1/2″

Add this creepy looking spider skull to your table for a great addition to your Halloween decorations!  Just add the required 3 AA Batteries (not included) and watch the fiber optic show begin!  Skull is made of durable resin and his hand is touching a ghoulish spider on top of his head.  Price: $21.99

This 40W 120V black light fits any standard lamp!  Black light looks like a giant skull!  Price:  $3.99

Dimension: 10″ x 4 3/8″
Tan Vinyl

Includes ten 4″ x 6″ note cards and a pen holder for note taking, holds up to 96 business cards, features an extra pocket for your own business cards, exceptional contact management all in one book that holds business cards, IDs or credit cards!  Price:  $12.49  (Great Gift Idea)

Christmas is my second favorite time of the year, other than Halloween, because I find myself getting all caught up in the Christmas music, wrapping presents ever so nice with great big bows, decorating the house, the scent of cinnamon in the oil burner, making Christmas cookies (and eating them too, of course), family get-togethers, and sharing a good glass of wine with your loved one.  But one of the best thing about Christmas is remembering some good ole childhood memories, and one that comes to mind is when my sister caught me unwrapping my presents when I was little and said that they were going to tell Mom & Dad.  Of course, the only way to get out of that situation was with a huge bribe.  (even though I paid dearly, for some reason I never forgot that childhood memory)  One of my favorite holiday traditions is to pick up a new ornament each year to put on the tree and every year thereafter, then your tree is filled with many memories.  Sharing the holidays with your family and loved one is the most precious gift of all.  Nothing compares to the love that is shared when you can feel it in your heart.  How do you make your holidays special? 

Take a look at this face….innocent, or guilty?  BUSTED!  Ever wonder what your cats do when you are not looking?  We found out that Princess (AKA: Prinster, Prinny,  Acrobat, the list goes on) likes to surf the net when we’re not looking, or at least that is what it looked like.   The only thing we did not figure out is what websites she was viewing!  LOL  She always tries to act so innocent, but somehow, her face gives it all away.  “What, who me?”
No matter how many new toys she has, she always enjoys an empty box to hide in.

How often do you say the phrase….“When Pigs Fly” in a conversation?  Probably pretty often, but just when I think that I have seen it all, I got an email today that proved that Pigs do fly!  Office Playground is selling flying pigs

The Flying Pig Stress Toy is perfect for all you fans of piggies on the wing. Squeeze this squishy pig to help release the stress of a busy day. Let this cool Flying Pig stress reliever roam your desktop in search of truffles and mud holes. Tell your co-workers the day has finally come when pigs fly — oink! oink! wheeeeee!

The Little Things in Life

Posted: June 22, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

It’s amazing how “The Little Things in Life” matter the most.  The feeling that overcomes you , the smile that ends up on your face, and the happiness that fills your heart.  Listed below are some of my favorite “Little Things”:  (please feel free to add your own “Little Things” to the list as well)

  1. The smell of fresh cut grass
  2. Finding the button that goes on your winter coat
  3. Taking a great photograph
  4. A Get Out of Jail Free Card in Monopoly
  5. A pair of jeans that fit
  6. A new color highlighter (and if it is scented, bonus!)
  7. Finding money in your pocket
  8. A great kiss
  9. Scratching off your instant lottery ticket & seeing that you won!
  10. A kitty purring
  11. A great boyfriend
  12. The Cleveland Browns actually winning a game
  13. A good glass of wine (Alice White Lexia is my favorite)
  14. Peanut butter (without the nuts)
  15. Getting a good price on a new Halloween Prop
  16. Chocolate (in any form, cake, brownies, cupcakes, M&M’s, icing)
  17. Finding the best pair of high heels (you never can have enough)
  18. Hot Dogs on the grill
  19. Post-it Notes
  20. Watching it snow (when you don’t have to drive in it)
  21. A loving family
  22. Getting free samples in the mail that you forgot you signed up for weeks ago
  23. An email from an old friend
  24. Getting what you want for your birthday
  25. Chips and Salsa
  26. A good steak
  27. Finding money on the ground (or finding money in the change holder at the grocery store that someone forgot – Ka Ching)
  28. Going to the Zoo & acting like a kid
  29. A day without allergies
  30. Painted toenails in the summer
  31. Christmas Songs
  32. Unwrapping Christmas presents
  33. The smell of fresh brewed coffee in the morning
  34. Hitting all green lights on the road
  35. The smell of fresh cleaned sheets

The list goes on, but we can all find happiness in The Little Things in Life that matter the most. 

www.themesnthings.comYour One Stop Shop for all your Seasonal Needs

Looking for a great idea to make for Father’s Day?  You can create these cute little notepads right at home with any photograph! 

Here’s what you will need:

  • Two 4″x6″ vertical photo prints
  • Assorted types of paper (lined paper, graph paper, colored paper, etc.)
  • Paper cutter or X-acto knife and ruler
  • Two binder clips or clothespins
  • White glue (like Elmer’s)
  • Stack of heavy books (optional)

Take your assortment of fine papers and cut each piece 4″x6″, the same size as your prints. An X-acto knife and ruler will work, but a paper cutter is a lot easier and quicker.

Keep cutting until you have a stack of paper about 1/4″ thick.  NOTE: You can also pick up pre-cut paper from a craft store to make this project even easier to complete. 

Tap the stack of paper sharply on the table to even up the stack. Tap one of the short edges until it’s perfectly flush.

Clamp the stack together with binder clips to keep it nicely lined up.

Apply glue to the evened-up short edge of the stack. Smear the glue evenly over the surface with your finger.

If any glue gets on the face of the pages, just wipe it away with your finger.

Let the glue dry for about 15 minutes, then shmear another layer of glue onto the same edge. Let it sit until the glue is completely dry.

The glue layer should be nice & thick. Unclamp the stack and ruffle it to see if any pages come loose. If they do, apply another good layer of glue and let it dry.

Place a print, face out, on the top and bottom of the stack and re-clamp with the binder clips.

And now… the spine!

Cut a strip of decorative paper 4″ long and about 3/4″ to 1″ wide.

Apply a thin layer layer of glue to the paper strip, smearing it over the whole surface with your fingertip.

Glue the strip onto the spine of the notepad (um, that’s the part with the glue layer on it.)

Line the paper strip up over the center of the spine, then bend one side down so it folds over the front cover of the notepad.

Smooth the strip onto the photo with your finger, then bend the other side of the paper strip onto the back cover and smooth that down.

If excess glue gets on the face of the photos, wipe it away with your finger or a damp paper towel.

Dump a big stack of books on top of the notepad (or put the clips back on so they hold the strip in place) and let the glue dry completely.

That’s it! See? Easy!

You can even make some great Halloween pads of paper to pass out to your trick-or-treaters !

Have you been looking for a unique Christmas present idea for your kids?  You search & search around the mall going to every store, look through shelves of products to no avail, look at the long lines that form only to wonder that when you find the item you are looking for, how long will it take until you finally reach the register.  We’ll look no futher because we found one unique item that will bring your kids hours of entertainment! 

Create drawings directly on your television!

Simply plug the controller into your TV and explore 4 activity modes:  Cool drawing tools, trace a pic, super sketch, and connecting the dots.

The image you draw with the controller magically appears on your TV and you just shake the controller to make the image magically disappear!  All ages will enjoy the fun!

Warning: Choking hazard – small parts. Not for children under 3 years.
Great stocking stuffer idea for Christmas!  Uses 4 AA batteries (not included)

Find it at in the Christmas Section!

Summer nights can be a bit chilly, but you can stay warm in front of the camp fire while snuggling in this American Flag Fleece Blanket

Keep warm in Patriotic Style!
Show your patriotism with this fleece blanket that looks like the American flag.  The dark, vivid colors of the flag appear on both sides of the throw for twice the wear. 

Made of machine-washable polyester.
Measuring 49″ x 60″, so it’s big enough for snuggling!   Find it at