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The Celebration Advisor - Wedding and Party Network Blog

Interested in planning a wedding? Curious about party planning? Do special events intrigue you? Then The Celebration Advisor is the place for you! We are a community of people who enjoy sharing the ins and outs of planning a celebration. Party planners will find topics ranging from party themes to party ideas. Wedding planners will discover wedding tips including handy checklists, learn about wedding traditions and find the answers to issues of etiquette. In this party and wedding blog, we invite you to share your experiences while exploring the celebrations of others. Welcome, let's celebrate!

by Kelly Curtis

Your Wedding Wednesday Question

Do you purchase gifts for ushers as well?


Actually, one of the duties of a groomsmen is to usher your guests. However, some choose to look at these as two different roles. To answer your question, they should receive a gift. It can be the same as groomsmen or different, it's up to you.

Skip the rice and bird seed for your send off. Instead, have you ever thought about having your guests throw confetti, sprinkles or glitter? Just imagine what your pictures would look like. Colorful confetti being thrown in the air above you would make for some amazing photos. Plus, it's something different yet still keeping the wedding tradition incorporated into your wedding. Thinking about incorporating this into your wedding? Share your photos with us or other ideas you may have at

Hosting a party? Have you ever thought about your hostess responsibilities? There's a lot more to it than you think. This week's Party Tip will focus on a few ways to make you a better hostess than you already are for future events.

  1. Introduce your guests – As soon as possible, introduce your guests to each other. That way, everyone feels included.
  2. Ask for dietary restrictions – Make sure there's something for everyone to eat. Some may have dairy or nut restrictions. It's important to be aware of that as well so you can let them know what dishes may not be for them.
  3. Engage your guests – Keep the conversation flowing and avoid any awkward silence.
  4. Seat someone new to each other – Don't just group friends together. Make your guests branch out and meet new people.

There are are many ways to be a gracious host at your party. How are you one? Share us your tips at

by Tracy Brengard

4th of July is a treasured national holiday. Many families celebrate in the traditional fashion with a neighborhood cookout or family gathering and end the night with fireworks. Keeping such traditions in tact is important, but sometimes it is fun to try something new!

Mix It Up With Your Food

Whatever type of food you plan to serve on the 4th this year, mix it up and prepare a different menu item. Traditional recipes combined with a new appetizer or desert can liven up any table. Keep with the theme and find a fun recipe using red, white and blue ingredients. For example, strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream are utilized in many holiday desserts.

Don't forget to liven up your table as well. Most craft stores have fun decorations you can use to set the table or picnic area. Purchase or create place cards and name your foods like Liberty Burgers or Freedom Fries. This would be a good way to involve the children or grandchildren in helping name all the food. Also, you can easily find themed plates, napkins, cups and serving pieces. Many flowers, such as tulips, roses, gerbera daisies, phlox or hydrangeas come in red, white or blue varieties and would make a festive holiday arrangement. Your table is one of the main focal points, so spend a little time on your table.

4th of July Activities

If you live in a neighborhood with children or grandchildren, try having a Patriotic Parade. Kids can decorate wagons, bicycles or even golf carts in red white and blue and parade around the neighborhood. Someone might be selected as Uncle Sam and judge the vehicles, awarding a prize to the most patriotic entry. The event could end with Uncle Sam reading a book to the younger ones about the founding of our country. The 4th of July Story by Alice Dalgliesh or The Story of the Star-Spangled Banner by Patricia A. Pingry are two examples of books that help explain the history of the holiday. This would be a great activity shared by all.

All About The Fireworks

The culmination of any 4th of July involves fireworks. Some may prefer to go inside to watch New York or Boston light up the sky on television. Still others attend events and watch a local fireworks show. While these are the least risky options, many enjoy lighting fireworks with family and friends. Most are aware of the dangers of fireworks, and adults should always be present. One or two adults could be in charge of a neighborhood show, which is a safer way for the kids to enjoy the holiday.

However you choose to celebrate the 4th of July, make it festive with decorations, flowers and food. Remember to appreciate the history of the day and enjoy celebrating with family and friends!

by Kelly Curtis

Birthday cakes are such a huge part of any birthday party. It's honestly one of the main highlights at a party. Guests walk in wondering what type of cake they'll see, since there are some very detailed cakes designed today. The most important thing to remember when figuring out what type of cake the birthday recipient will have is that it reflects them. Still need ideas? This weeks Inspirational Friday is all about birthday cakes.

Don't forget to talk with your bakery. They'll have great ideas if you tell them what you have in mind and even if you don't. Don't forget to share your pictures with us at


by Laken Watts

Your baby is 6 months old, and we know what you’re already thinking: first birthday party. Your mind starts to wander to blow up toys, goody bags, smash cake and decorations. All you see are dollar signs. Never fear, we’ve got your how to’s on doing a ONE-derful party that won’t break the bank.

Birthday Party Location

Do it at home! Why rent a big party space when you can open your home to friends and family for free? Homes make everyone feel more welcome and “part of the family.” Your house will be the perfect quaint atmosphere.

What Food To Serve

Also a DIY. Buying food at your local bulk store or cost saver grocery is the way to go. For this little girl’s first birthday, we commissioned grandmas to make a few sides to help bear the burden, because let’s face it, EVERYONE wants to come to this first birthday. The theme was Look Whooo’s Turning one, and momma made most of the food to look like owls.

A Party Isn't Complete Without Decorations

This little girl in particular had her bedroom done in an owl theme, with bright pops of color. So to save money, Mom went ahead and carried that theme to the party and used decorations she already had. Tissue paper flowers (see our tutorial) made for cute table decorations, and the only money spent was on these glittered O-N-E letters. These were cardboard letters found at the local craft store. We dipped in Modge Podge and rolled in gold glitter. Easy!

Don't Forget The Cake

The infamous smash cake. Baking a homemade cake seemed like the best idea for this budget-savvy mom. She bought a cake, and baked two layers in a small 6” round cake. Then we iced with a pink buttercream icing and rose tip. Total cost for the cake was about $4, which was much easier on the pocket book. For the rest of the family, she did a regular sheet cake.

Capture Those Special Moments

This could easily be the biggest bulk of the expense for your child’s first birthday. No doubt, we want to get photos of them smashing that cake, and quite often, photographers can do a separate shoot for that special event. For the party, get a friend to take photos throughout the day of your little one to document the occasion. Even a simple point and shoot camera will do the job.

There you have it. Simple and easy, and right on the money steps for planning a first birthday party. Decide your budget, and use these simple tips to help plan your child’s first birthday party. Also, don't forget to talk with party vendors as well. They have such amazing ideas and a variety of packages that may work within your budget as well.

by Kelly Curtis

Your Wedding Wednesday Question

Is it proper etiquette to send a gift to a friend that recently eloped?


You are not obligated to send a gift. However, it might be nice to send a card congratulating the couple or even a small gift. It's completely up to you.

We hope this answered your question!
If you have more wedding questions, send them to:

Every Wednesday we will post answers to your biggest wedding questions.

by Kelly Curtis

What's another wedding trend we're loving this year? Mini desserts. They're everywhere. From mini cupcakes, macaroons, petite fours to tartlets, we're seeing a variety of miniature desserts. Not only can you display these in some fun ways, but they're also great for guests since they're so easy to pick up. Tell us what you think of this trend at

by Kelly Curtis

Planning an outdoor wedding? They are absolutely stunning. You have the elements of nature as your backdrop and you have breathtaking views all around you. However, planning an outdoor wedding does have some drawbacks, but nothing that you can't overcome. This week's Wedding Tip gives you a few tips when planning yours.

  1. Backup Plan – As much as you want an outdoor wedding, there are just some factors that are out of your control when planning an outdoor wedding. One is rain. Therefore, it's best to have a backup plan.
  2. Consider Your Food – Of course, your caterer should warn you about this but consider the food you serve. Will it spoil in the outdoor temperatures?
  3. Outdoor Elements – Consider everyone at your wedding. The sun and bugs can be another challenging element at an outdoor wedding. It would be a nice gesture to provide sunscreen and bug spray.
  4. What You're Wearing – Consider the fabric you plan to wear on your wedding day. If your outdoor wedding is during the summer, consider lighter fabrics. If it's during cooler months, think about wearing a dress that will provide some warmth.
  5. Hydration – Again, heat is an important factor to consider. With the heat, comes the possibility of dehydration. Don't forget to provide plenty of water, drinks and even hydrating food like watermelon.

We hope these tips helps when planning your outdoor wedding. Don't forget to share your tips with us at

by Kelly Curtis

Your wedding bouquet is a big part of your day. This is what you carry down the aisle and will be an accessory for you. Also, your wedding bouquet displays your personality as well as style. It really says a lot about you. So, getting your wedding bouquet right is a must.

Don't forget to discuss in detail about what you are wanting for your wedding bouquet with your florists. They'll have many great suggestions, as well as knowing exactly what flowers are in season. There is a bridal bouquet out there that is perfect for you, your style and wedding. We hope this Inspirational Friday brings you a little inspiration. Also, don't forget to share your wedding bouquet photos with us at

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