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Summer Adventures Roundup

When it comes to fun and adventure, there’s no better season than summer to charter unknown territory with your friends. From traveling and hiking, to exploring your own city or offering up your time to assist a person or organization, there’s always something new to learn, unfamiliar places to explore, and grand experiences lying just around the bend.

We’ve collected six fun and different ideas you might like to try, or they may even spark an idea of your own.  So grab your friends and set out on some new adventures, and be ready to make some beautiful memories that will last a lifetime. There’s still so much summer to enjoy!

  1. 08112015_Summer_adventures_Roundup_BLG_BMAGet up, up, and away! Whether you’re heading off for a week at the seaside or a fun day trip, parasailing will give you the ultimate adventure of fun in the sun! It’s one of those “someday”   activities that we always want to try but never seem to get around to. Unleash your hesitations and let your spirit soar!
  2. Take a random road trip. Let fate plan your fun by throwing darts at a map of your county (or of your state or country if you’re up for a longer excursion) and wherever they come closest to is your road trip to remember. If you happen to be near the World’s Largest Frying Pan or Biggest Ball of Twine, Roadside America will make sure you don’t miss it. Don’t worry too much about taking an exact route—the goal here is the fun and stories you’ll gather along the way.
  3. Food truck day. If you’re tired of the same old restaurants or just want to cut back a bit on spending while you explore your town or city, switch things up and chase down some delicious food trucks! Have each friend pick a different truck for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and of course—snacks and treats! Or have each friend pick a different food truck each week, and plan to meet for lunch throughout the month. It’s amazing what new and different things you can experience right in your own city.
  4. Go on a hike and pack your own trail mix. Hiking doesn’t have to be an all-day trek through the wilderness. Visit your local trails or your state park and relish the fresh air as you catch up,unplug, and drink in nature’s scenic beauty. Have each friend bring a batch of homemade trail   mix to share during your outing.
  5. Try a completely new activity without spending a lot. Always wanted to try yoga? Never learned to swim? How about learning how to paint? It’s always refreshing to try something new with friends,  and with helpful sites like Groupon and Living Social, you’ll find great deals and discounts to boot.
  6. Volunteer for a good cause. There’s no better feeling than helping someone else, so gather your friends and do something for the greater good. You can help build homes with Habitat for Humanity, volunteer at a local animal shelter, rock babies at your hospital, or even band together and help a sick or elderly neighbor by mowing, weeding, and beautifying their yard. There’s no greater joy to be had than sharing a simple act of kindness.

 

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Printable Quote: Summertime

We hope you are all enjoying the sunshine and warm weather of sweet, sweet summertime! The feelings that summer bring out should be shared, so we wanted to create this printable, and framable summer quote for you. Hang it on your wall, at your desk, or give to a friend. Enjoy!

07222015_Summertime_living_Printable_BLG_BMA Click here to download, print, and frame

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Celebrate National Sisters Day on August 2

Sisters share an unbreakable bond, and did you know that there is a special day just for celebrating what that bond means?!? August 2 is National Sisters Day – a day to spend with your sisters, or even friends who are like sisters to you. We created this special postcard just to help you celebrate. Click here to view, send, and share. Happy Sisters Day!

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Birthday Surprise: Celebrating 70!

 

70_birthday_partyIntroBirthdays are meant to be celebrated. And milestone birthdays are even more special. One of our extremely talented Art Directors, Alison, has a knack for party planning, and she does a pretty amazing job. This past Spring, Alison’s mother was turning 70, and she knew she wanted to celebrate in a really special way. We had to share how everything turned out, so here’s Alison with the details….

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My mom was turning 70 this year and I didn’t want another birthday, especially a milestone, to go by without an unforgettable celebration. What better way to honor someone than to throw a surprise birthday party?

So back in February, my brother and I started planning. We wanted to invite as many people as possible–friends, family, classmates, and co-workers. I designed the invitation around her stunning engagement picture, my favorite photo of her.

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I wanted the colors to be classy and fun. Gold, black, pinks and polka-dots to represent the 50’s era my mom grew up in. I turned black paper fans into records, using song titles that went with my mom’s name, Sharron, like “My Sharona” and “Sherry Baby”. To continue the theme, I used records as table centerpiece mats as well.

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Each centerpiece was a gold Mason jar that contained  a Happy Birthday tag, black paper fans with her picture, gold flags with “70”cut outs, and black or pink polka-dot balloons and flowers. Flowers were incorporated into everything. I made pom-pom flowers, cupcake liner flowers, and small and large tissue paper flowers.  Each table featured different titles for her—“mom,” “daughter,” “sister,” “wife,” “grandma” and “friend.”

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Ah…the cake!  I continued with the flowers and created a topper for it that said, “70 Years Loved.”  I also served polka-dot cookies with gold “70” and black “S” for “Sharron,” that people could take home with them.

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As you can see from my mom’s expression, we got her!  She was beyond surprised. Hugs went on forever and everyone had a great time. Best gift of the evening: as my mom hugged me she told me, “It’s an honor to be your mom.”

All the planning, stress, and flower making…totally worth it.    Happy Birthday, Mom!

Click here to see more pictures from the party.
All Photos Courtesy of Kelly Kutsko
Cookies by Chris Carolin
Cake by Kelsey Elizabeth Cakes

 

 

 

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Summer Craft Roundup: Planning a Crafternoon

It’s summer. You’ve got some extra time on your hands. And you’d love to plan a crafternoon.

“What exactly is a ‘crafternoon’?” you may be wondering if you’ve never heard the term before. Simply put, it’s an afternoon solely devoted to the joy of crafting.

In other words, it’s a time to relax, have fun, and let your creative juices flow!

This summer, take respite from the heat and activity-filled zaniness to enjoy a lazy afternoon with one of these easy-to-make home and garden décor craft projects. (Lemonade or iced tea optional—but highly recommended!)

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1. DIY Outdoor Pillows via Meet the B’s
2.  Garden Markers via Wit & Whistle
3. Drink Covers via Martha Stewart
4. Driftwood Seahorse via Creative in Chicago
5. Simple Summer Totebag via Crafting Chicks
6. Mason Jar Tiki Torches via The Frugal Homemaker

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Summer Gardening

Gardens—of any and all kinds—bring both joy and tranquility to those who cultivate and grow them. Whether it’s a flower garden, a vegetable garden, an herb garden, or a purely whimsical garden, it’s a place that becomes your haven. Your sanctuary. Your masterpiece.

Of course, gardens take time and patience. You need to plan, plant, water, and weed. But you also get to enjoy every moment, watching them grow into the magnificent fruits of your labor.

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1. Vegetable Garden: Juneau Empire
2. Whimsical Garden: Gardening Gone Wild
3. Herb Garden: Persephone Magazine
4. Vegetable Garden: LLH Designs
5. Flower Garden: Architecture Art Designs
6. Herb Garden: Not Just a Housewife

 

Blue Mountain certainly appreciates the significance of lovely gardens to our readers. That’s why we love to create beautiful eCards that specifically feature a garden theme. Click here to see some enchanting examples—and then be sure to send one to someone special today. Summer gardening is one of the best ways to brighten up any ones yard.

If you already have a garden growing right now, wonderful! If not, we’d love to offer some creative examples of unique gardens you may want to consider growing yourself. Or at least to “oooh” and “aaah” over.

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July 2015 Desktop Background & Letter from the Editor

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Life is like everything else—we get out of it what we put into it.  You can wait for an adventure to come knocking at your door, or you can go out and make one happen.

When was the last time you did something for the first time?  It doesn’t have to be base jumping or highlining, it can be as simple as taking a dance lesson, attending a music festival, joining a hiking group or embarking on a road trip.  Children have an innate sense of adventure, so pack a picnic and invite your kids and grandkids, or borrow someone else’s, and go exploring.   Now is the new never.

Summer is a great time for making new memories and revisiting old ones.  Are there elements you could add to your décor that evoke happy recollections, like wildflowers in mason jars, bowls of seashells and sea glass, wind chimes and Japanese lanterns?  Are there summertime drinks that remind you of home, like sweet tea or sangria or root beer floats?  Maybe you could you return to a favorite family vacation spot or theme park.  The Fourth of July is a perfect time to revive some childhood traditions.

On July 4th we commemorate the day in 1776 when our Declaration of Independence was signed and our freedom declared—a freedom that we continue to cherish and protect.  Parades, picnics, BBQ’s, sparklers and fireworks are all part of the fun.  And while you’re celebrating our nation’s birthday, remember all your family and friends who are celebrating theirs this summer, by sending them Blue Mountain Birthday eCards. 

We also have a brand new, beautiful desktop background for your computer phone, and even your Facebook cover image.

July Background:
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2560 x 1440 / 1680 x 1050 / 1440 x 900 / 1280 x 800Facebook Cover Photo / Phone
For help on how to install, click here.

Go 4th and have fun!

Caroline Martlew, Senior Editor
Caroline

 

 

 

 

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Father’s Day Coloring Pages

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Let Dad brag about the little artist in his life! Father’s Day coloring pages are the perfect keepsake for Dad or Grandpa, that lets kids exercise their creativity and give him something from the heart. Simply print out a page to color and personalize…that’s it!

Our Father’s Day printables make a sweet, thoughtful gift idea for kids who want to honor Dad or Grandpa on his special day. After coloring in images designed to make Dad smile, proud papas can display their children’s art on the refrigerator, in the garage, or on their desk at work.

With a little help from parents, siblings, and (of course) Blue Mountain, each Father’s Day coloring pages can be personalized with your own words to Dad. Show and tell him how much he means to you this Father’s Day with a colorful corner of your heart printed out to share with the #1 Dad in your life.

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Mothers Day Kids Coloring Pages

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We’re so happy to share a little something new with you for this Mother’s Day! Whether you’re looking for something creative to do with your kids or grand kids, or you’re just a kid-at-heart, you’ll love these new Mothers Day Kids Coloring Pages!

Children can sit down with a parent, grandparent, or sibling to select coloring pages to print and present to Mom or Grandma on her special day. Blue Mountain offers a variety of Mother’s Day coloring pages online. Color a brilliant bunch of Mother’s Day flowers for Mom, or let her know she’s #1 – not just on Mother’s Day, but every day.

Printable Mother’s Day Coloring sheets give kids the freedom to color outside the lines, and add their own special poem or words to Mom or Grandma, too. Include a thoughtful message from the heart and you’ll be good to go!

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Letter from the Editor May 2015

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New month, new day, new dreams–it does seem like anything is possible in May.  In a whirlwind of spring cleaning, we’ve put away our winter things—sweaters, boots and ice scrapers and we’ve begun mowing, mulching and weeding.  It won’t be long before we’re barefoot in the grass again.  We’re shaking out our welcome mats and looking forward to entertaining our family and friends on the warm and sunny days ahead.

May is filled with reasons to celebrate!  Bookending the month, we have Nurses week at the beginning (where would we be without them?)  and Memorial Day on the 25th, when we honor and remember those who have served our country.

On May 10th, we celebrate all the great moms in our lives on Mother’s Day.  Here at Blue Mountain, we’ve been creating some wonderful new cards especially for her.  Inspired by beautiful Boston Public Garden, we imagined a scene from the turn of the century with the swan boats drifting on the lagoon to the music of a string quartet along the bank, playing Minuet in G.  Our favorite collage artist has created a stunning new design, incorporating warm and loving wishes for Mom. And you’ll be happy to hear, we’ve designed a new Mother’s Day card, featuring Pharrell Williams’ song, “Happy.”  If you’re a Talking Card fan, you’ll enjoy our new glam dog at the spa, “Paws and Relax.”

Happy May and Happy Mother’s Day!
Caroline Martlew, Senior Editor

Caroline

 

 

 

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