5 Inexpensive Last-Minute Halloween Tips

halloween blog2Halloween is just days away, but it’s not too late to find a perfect costume or brew up some last-minute goodies for all the ghouls and goblins that appear at your door.

Halloween doesn’t have to be an expensive event, even if you did manage to wait until the last minute. With a little creativity, you can still celebrate all things ghoulish without skimping on the fun. Just use these Halloween tips to create a frighteningly fun party while also keeping your spending in check.

Repurpose old clothes – Sometimes the best costumes are the ones you already own. Go shopping in your own closets and storage bins for pieces that may work for the look you want. Do you have an old pair of overalls? A red shirt and red cap make an easy Super Mario costume, or you can use a yellow t-shirt and swimming goggles to make a Minion outfit. Versatility is the key.

Face paint – Halloween masks are not only pricey, but they often restrict vision and breathing. Face paint is an excellent inexpensive alternative that is safer and can achieve the same look at a fraction of the price.

iStock_000022989519_MediumBuy candy in bulk – Small-sized candy doesn’t mean small-sized prices. Purchasing Halloween candy in retail stores can get expensive depending on what kind and how much you buy. Purchasing candy and other party items in bulk from warehouse clubs is usually a better value.

Thrift shopping – Thrift shops like Goodwill and the Salvation Army are outstanding spots for inexpensive Halloween costumes. Many thrift shops have complete costumes for children and a treasure trove of options for adult costumes. Putting together your outfit is almost as fun as the party itself!

Freaky finger foods – Are you hosting a Halloween party this year? Pinterest is an outstanding source of inspiration for unique and inexpensive treats. The ideas are endless and you can find ideas and recipes to fit well within any budget.

PicMonkey CollageLike so many holidays today, Halloween comes with plenty of consumer enticements, but there’s no reason why you can’t do it on the cheap. You are only limited by your imagination! If you need any last minute decorating inspiration for your Halloween party, Topper’s has you covered. Give us a call or stop by the shop. We’ll spare you the tricks, but we have plenty of treats!

Topper’s wishes you a safe and happy Halloween!

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It’s Time to Go Green with Amazing Indoor Plants

Cozy corner at home in the morning lightsWe often hear the term “going green” applied to energy-saving tactics such as recycling and renewable energy, but as our society focuses on better living and healthier lifestyles, literally going green with indoor plants is an incredible way to naturally enhance our overall health and well-being.

In addition to the established psychological effects that flowers and plants have on our moods and emotions, green plants benefit our physical health as well by purifying the air we breathe and replenishing oxygen supplies in enclosed spaces.

As the seasons change and the days get colder, we tend to spend less time outside and more time indoors where it is more difficult to reap the rewards of natural clean air. We all know that green plants make excellent indoor companions in our living spaces, but what exactly do they do for us?

Moisturizing the Air

Cooler temperatures tend to bring lower outdoor humidity levels which can lead to dry skin along with colds, sore throats, dry coughs and sinus problems for many people. Investing in a humidifier to bring the indoor moisture levels up is the best way to combat this issue, but green indoor plants also do an outstanding job in boosting oxygen levels and adding some moisture inside the home while also enhancing the beauty and style of your indoor spaces.

Purifying the Air

Among the most important benefits that green plants provide is air filtration. Plants work hard to combat harmful toxins and pollutants in the air. Our air contains dangerous chemicals such as trichloroethylene, formaldehyde, benzene, xylene, and ammonia, which are byproducts of many of the household goods and materials that we use on a daily basis.

The adverse health effects caused by these chemicals depends on many different factors, but the less exposure we have to them, the better. NASA conducted a comprehensive clean air study in 1998 and found 18 of the most effective indoor plants for removing toxins from the air. Here are the plants they recommend:

Simply Elegant Spathiphyllum by Topper's

Simply Elegant Spathiphyllum by Topper’s

– Dwarf Date Palm
– Boston Fern
– Kimberley Queen Fern
– Spider Plant
– Chinese Evergreen
– Bamboo Palm
– Weeping Fig
– Devil’s Ivy
– Flamingo Lily
– Lilyturf
– Broadleaf Lady Palm
– Barberton Daisy
– Cornstalk Dracaena
– English Ivy
– Variegated Snake Plant
– Red-Edged Dracaena
– Peace Lily
– Florist’s Chrysanthemum

Find Your Perfect Plant

With such a wide variety of plants to choose from, there are many outstanding choices for every room in the home or office. It is important to match the right plants to the right growing conditions as some require more light and more attention than others. Make Topper’s your first stop when searching for that perfect plant. Check out our selection of green plants, or stop in and let us help you find the perfect plant for every circumstance.

Don’t forget Your Pets

If you are a pet owner, keep in mind that some plants and flowers are toxic to cats, dogs, and other pets. Be sure to check the toxicity level of any plants or flowers that you introduce to your home.

Think Pink in October

iStock_000020263348_BlogOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer charities to increase awareness of the disease and also to raise funds for research, prevention, treatment and cure. While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to have a plan to detect the disease in its early stages and encourage others to do the same.

National Breast Cancer Awareness Month was founded in 1985 to promote mammography as the most effective weapon in the fight against the disease.

The pink ribbon is an international symbol of breast cancer awareness. It was first used in connection with breast cancer awareness in 1991 when the Susan G. Komen Foundation handed out pink ribbons to participants in its New York City race for breast cancer survivors. The pink ribbon was adopted as the official symbol the next year, in 1992.

Here are some facts about breast cancer and National Breast Cancer Awareness Month:

  • Other than skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common kind of cancer in women. About 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point.
  • Early screening is vital because 80% of women diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history.
  • A variety of events around the world are organized in October, including walks and runs, and the pink illumination of landmark buildings. The National Football League promotes breast cancer awareness by incorporating pink on and off the field.
  • Each year in the United States, more than 200,000 women get breast cancer and more than 40,000 women die from the disease.
  • Men also get breast cancer, but it is not very common. Less than 1% of breast cancers occur in men.
  • Most breast cancers are found in women who are 50 years old or older, but breast cancer also affects younger women. About 11% of all new cases of breast cancer in the United States are found in women younger than 45 years of age.

Discover the Incredible Mood Power of Flowers

Everyone knows that flowers make people happy and enhance people’s moods, but the mood power of flowers may be even greater than we realize. Science has proven time and again that flowers play a powerful role in our lives, but their positive effect on our mental health is nothing short of incredible.

A study conducted by Rutgers University found that every single one of its 150 test participants expressed happiness upon receiving even one flower. The reaction was universal throughout all age groups and included both men and women. The study confirmed the possibility that flowers may, in fact, affect brain chemistry.

Studies show that besides making us happy, flowers are also proven to:

Belle by Topper's European Floral Design

Belle by Topper’s European Floral Design

– fuel creativity and quick thinking
– make employees more productive
– help with stress reduction
– increase focus
– feed compassion
– lower blood pressure
– trigger memory
– boost energy levels

Giving is receiving

What really sets flowers apart from other gifts is that the act of giving may actually be more beneficial than receiving. A study by Texas A&M concluded that givers were perceived as caring, successful and emotionally intelligent people who possess the ability to not only express their own feelings but to take the time to understand the feelings of others.

Rio by Topper's European Floral Design

Rio by Topper’s European Floral Design

Studies have also shown that a person can actually influence and change what others think of them in a significant way through the gifts they give, and perhaps no other gifts have the ability to evoke such positive feelings and perceptions as flowers.

Find the right mood

When a person sends flowers – or purchases them for their own enjoyment – the types of flowers they choose may play a significant role in enhancing a particular mood. Warm color flowers in reds, yellows and oranges boost energy and stimulate the brain, making people more alert and creative. On the other end of the spectrum, cool color flowers and plants in greens and blues tend to create a more soothing effect by slowing the production of stress hormones to aid in relaxation.

No matter what the occasion, flowers are indeed the perfect gift of happiness and positive vibes – they are a potent mood elevator and a natural source of pleasure. Call Topper’s Floral today and let us help you experience for yourself – the incredible mood power of flowers.