Archive | Uncategorized RSS feed for this section

‘Tis the Season… for Christmas returns!!!

26 Dec

Just a day or two ago, there were piles of presents that lay beautifully under the Christmas tree – full of the promise of happy times.  After the dust settles on the Christmas holiday, your eye naturally turns to the new piles of “stuff” that seems to have exploded in your house.  Here are some survival guide tips on how to sort through the piles and restore your home to some normalcy.


Step 1:  Separate the gift from the wrapping supplies….

Half of the volume of stuff in your house is the packaging that the presents were delivered in.  You can easily weed down the piles by simply removing the gifts from the gift boxes and tissue paper that seem to take over the house on Christmas day.


If you tend to save the gift boxes like I do (not every store offers gift boxes anymore), I immediately fold the boxes down flat and put them in a single neat pile.  Tissue paper gets thrown away – or if it’s not too wrinkled – it can be folded neatly to make tissue paper poms (refer to this link for a tutorial on how to make these fun decorations


Step 2:  Make sure everything fits properly….

If you haven’t done so already, have everyone in your family try on the clothes that they received for Christmas.  If the item fits, put it away in a drawer or closet right away.  If it doesn’t fit, or they just don’t want it, put them in a pile to be returned/exchanged.

photo 1

Step 3:  Make a plan to handle the returns/exchanges….

If these items were purchased by someone in your home, pull out the receipts and put them with the items.  If they were purchased by someone outside your household, decide if it’s appropriate to ask for the receipt for the item so you can get the proper value that the gift giver paid for the item (and any sales tax they may have paid).  If you think the gift giver would be offended or upset by the thought of you returning the item, then you will probably need to just get a store credit for the current value of the item (less any state sales taxes paid).


Step 4:  Sort the items by store…

I put all of the items that need to be returned in one bag per store and pile them up in a busy spot in my kitchen.  Just the thought of tripping over these items each time I walk by helps give me the push to actually go out there and make the return/exchange.


Step 5:  Make a driving plan to return the items – and get out there and actually do it!

After the craziness of the holiday, I am not usually in the mood to spend a whole day going from store to store returning items.  I tend to group the stores by their location to each other and tackle one direction at a time.  Writing out a list helps me to organize my thoughts and remember all of the things I have to do.

If I am feeling really ambitious, I will put all the bags in my car in order to get the piles out of my house.  After all, if the items aren’t in your car, you can’t ever make the return – right?

HAPPY RETURNING from all of us at BaptismalGownsPlus!!!

This family friendly blog is provided by  We specialize in high quality, affordable Baptismal gowns, rompers & suits, First Communion dresses, girls headpieces and boy’s suits.  In addition, we have a full line of Confirmation robes for churches to choose from with sizes to fit any size Confirmation candidate.


Enjoy The Little Things In Life…

16 Sep

2013-09-16 enjoy the little things

Come visit for a wide selection of Baptismal and First Communion apparel and accessories for boys and girls.

What I Want for Mother’s Day…

9 May

Well, I got the text I was waiting for a few days ago from my husband…. “anything specific you want for Mother’s Day from your boys?”

text message

After 20 years of marriage, and 11 years of being a mom, my husband knows that randomly picking a gift for me doesn’t always work.

wedding ring

I’ve received several gift certificates to a “spa” for a massage, or facial, or some other luxurious service where I can be pampered for an hour or two, to emerge feeling like a new woman.  Problem is, I’m a busy woman, and ‘pampering myself’ usually falls to the bottom of my very long to-do list.

gift certificate

My greatest satisfaction is doing things for others so I have never enjoyed splurging on something just for me.  I guess the thought of feeling selfish overpowers the ‘relaxing’ feeling of the spa service itself.  I find it hard to actually unplug and relax – and often find myself just running through my ‘to do’ list to figure out what I should be doing once I finish with the treatment I’m in the middle of ‘enjoying’.

to do list

I’ve actually let gift certificates pile up unused for a period of years.  Feeling guilty about not using them, I decided I would procrastinate no longer and actually set aside a day to use them.  I made the call to get an appointment, only to find out that the salon I had these gift certificates for actually closed their doors and were out of business.  Now I had the opportunity to feel guilty that we were losing the money that my husband intended me to enjoy…


Time seems to get away from us… I am always busy running my own business and volunteering countless hours for our town’s Little League organization by running a concession stand and being Parents Auxiliary President.  My husband is Secretary of Little League, coaches our son’s baseball & football team’s and is President of our town’s Youth Football league.  Did I forget to mention he also works full time?  I find that our family is rarely home at the same time.

baseball coach                    football state champshot dogs

This year’s text from my husband made me stop and think about what I really want.  After just a few moments, I decided what I want for Mother’s Day.

Landscaping stones.  Yes, you read that right – what I want for Mother’s Day is landscaping stones… Well, not just landscaping stones, I want landscaping stones AND the time from my husband and son to work on our landscaping together and get this project done.  They aren’t glamorous, they aren’t luxurious, but none the less, it is what I want for Mother’s Day.  I told my husband what I want when he came home for lunch that day.  He just grinned knowing that as ridiculous as it sounds for a Mother’s Day gift, it is what will make me the most happy.

A girl wants what a girl wants…

red landscape stones                    oh well shrug                    Kevin mowing lawn

What are YOU hoping for on Mother’s Day?  Share your thoughts with us by commenting on this post.

Anne-Marie Dunn is the owner of

Please feel free to visit our website or send us an e-mail at to let us know what you think.

April is Earth Month

5 Apr

In case you haven’t heard, April is now dubbed “Earth Month” in celebration of Earth Day which is April 22nd.  Implement these easy earth friendly ideas into your Easter clean up.

  • Save all the plastic eggs collected during Easter egg hunts for next year.  Your kids will love to hang them on the tree next spring.You could even surprise them with a winter egg hunt during a snow storm

easter eggs in snow

  • Dump the plastic Easter basket grass into a bag and store it in an Easter basket for next year’s celebration.  There is no reason to buy Easter grass year after year.

easter basket with grass

  • Donate the excess Easter baskets, stuffed animals and toys to Goodwill (crafters always look there for deals!) or give away via Freecycle or craigslist.  This avoids landfill waste.

donating to Goodwill

  • Check with your local church or synagogue.  Many places collect unwanted wrapped candy for their volunteers to take to the local soup kitchen.

wrapped easter candy

  • Finally, enjoy the Easter plants for years to come!  When appropriate, plant outside.

easter plants

As always, involve your kids!  They are learning lots of earth friendly ideas at school and they will be impressed with your initiatives!

What other ways can you think to reduce/reuse/recycle your Easter items?  Share your thoughts with us!

Any questions at all, please visit us at or contact us at