Don’t Forget Grandparents Day on Sunday, September 12

Grandparents Day is a national holiday or observance, celebrated each year on the first Sunday after Labor Day. This year it takes place on Sunday September 12.  Contrary to popular misconception, Grandparents Day was not invented by greeting card companies, florists, restaurants, or any other business interest.

Instead, the origin of Grandparents Day can be traced back to 1956 when a mother from West Virginia named Marian McQuade helped organize a community celebration for people over 80 years of age. In doing so, she realized how many elderly care facility residents had been forgotten by their families.  

Fresh and Fabulous Bouquet from Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop is a perfect gift for Grandparents Day

She envisioned a holiday that would not only bring attention to the elderly population but would also honor all grandparents by celebrating the connections between generations. Her work paid off and in 1973 West Virginia became the first state to set aside a special day to celebrate grandparents. Three years later – in 1978 – her efforts resulted in Grandparents Day becoming a national holiday celebrated in every state.

Simple Celebration

Unlike many other popular holidays that honor people on a larger scale with parties and large gatherings, most Grandparents Day celebrations are small and intimate and often take place in homes, hospitals, and care facilities with close family members.

In fact, McQuade went to great lengths to keep the holiday less commercial and truer to its roots by refusing all donations and royalties associated with her efforts. She also spurned overtures from Hallmark who predicted that Grandparents Day would become the sixth biggest holiday on the calendar each year for greeting card sales.

Despite that, many families celebrate grandparents by giving gifts. Some families embrace the spirit of the holiday and encourage grandparents to share stories and give gifts to their grandchildren, especially personal gifts that celebrate special family traditions.

In most cases, family get-togethers do not need to be expensive or elaborate. The important thing is choosing activities the grandparent enjoys while fostering intergenerational connection. Sharing a simple meal or spending time to visit is enough to please most grandparents. Engaging with them by playing board games, cards, and puzzles are fun ways to spend time together. Grandparents Day is also a fantastic time to look at old pictures or share some family stories.

It’s the Thought That Counts the Most

Perhaps the biggest reason why Grandparents Day has escaped commercial exploitation is because of holiday burnout. If that is truly the case, grandparents still should not let the occasion go by unnoticed. Most of the younger generation will be happy to participate even if they don’t have to plan. It is important to remember that true reason for holiday is to give grandparents a chance to show their love for – and spend their time with – their grandchildren.

If you are not able to get together in person, Grandparents Day is a terrific chance for you to call them, text them, video chat with them, or perhaps even write them a good old-fashioned hand-written letter or have your children draw some pictures for them to include in a card. Of course, you could also send them a beautiful bouquet of flowers from Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop. We have options for everyone, and a simple surprise delivery is an easy, convenient, and personal way to make a grandparent’s Grandparents Day special.

As a Yes We Can florist, Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop features same-day delivery in Milwaukee, WI and surrounding areas for Grandparents Day, as well as birthdays, anniversaries, new babies, get well soon wishes, sympathy, weddings, or even just because. Visit our store, located at 7001 W North Ave., Milwaukee, WI 53213, or shop online 24/7.

Back to School time is the perfect opportunity to say thank you with flowers from Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop

It may feel like summer just started, but it’s almost that time of year once again! Back-to-school sales are starting to pop up everywhere, and teachers are busy preparing for the start of school year unlike any we’ve experienced before.

Not sure what to order? Choosing Designer’s Choice from Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop is an ideal option for Back to School flowers because YOU pick the price!

With summer winding down, now is not only the perfect time to show your appreciation to those who have been taking care of your kids during the break, but also a fantastic opportunity to start the school year off right with a gift of flowers for the teachers, facility, coaches, and staff who will be enriching their lives during the next nine months.

To some, it may seem like the summer flew by too fast while others have been counting the days until the new school year begins. Regardless of how you feel about your kids going back to school, we hope your summer was filled with adventure and learning experiences that can’t be taught in schools. If there are any nannies, babysitters, grandparents, aunts, uncles, camp counselors, clergy members or coaches who influenced your summer, flowers are always a perfect way to acknowledge and say thanks for their hard work and dedication.

Most of those people aren’t expecting gifts, so the gesture certainly isn’t necessary, but even a small token of your appreciation is a thoughtful way of showing gratitude that often means more to the recipient than the giver will ever realize.

Forget the apple

It’s 2021 – your teacher doesn’t want an apple unless it’s a phone or computer – so forget the fruit in favor of a beautiful bouquet of brightly-colored flowers instead. Flowers really are the perfect way to set the mood for the start of the school year while brightening up the classroom at the same time.

Teachers aren’t the only ones who enjoy flowers, however, so don’t forget bus drivers, teacher’s aides, facility members, crossing guards, and everyone else who makes the school a fun and inviting place to learn. Flowers are so wonderful at putting smiles on people’s faces, especially when they’re least expected. At Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop, we specialize in helping you choose the perfect gift for everyone on your list – no matter how big or small of an impact they have on your children’s education.

If you have a friend or family member going away to college for the first time this fall, flowers are a fun and festive way to decorate dorm rooms and live plants are perfect picks if you’re looking for a longer-lasting gift. Most of the plants we carry are easy to care for and don’t require a lot of work, which is ideal for busy students who are always on the go.

As a Yes We Can florist, Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop features same-day delivery in Milwaukee, WI and surrounding areas for birthdays, anniversaries, new babies, get well soon wishes, sympathy, weddings, or even just because. Visit our store, located at 7001 W North Ave., Milwaukee, WI 53213, or shop online 24/7.

This Mother’s Day, trust the designers at Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop to create a one-of-a-kind gift she will never forget

Click to order a Designers’ Choice bouquet from Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop in Milwaukee, WI

Mother’s Day is less than a week away, but the good news is you still have time to find the perfect gift for mom and have it hand-delivered to her door in time for Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 9. Even better news is that you won’t have to travel far to find a gift that is so unique and special that we can guarantee she has never seen anything like it before. All it takes is the click of a button and a little faith the experienced floral design team at Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop.

Ordering flowers online with the national retail companies can often be a frustrating experience. First you see a beautiful image of a perfect bouquet of flowers with a “special” price that seems too good to be true. The further along you get in the ordering process, the more fees, and charges you manage to rack up until you finally end up paying nearly as much in mysterious service and convenience fee as you did for the flowers!

Several days later your gift to mom will arrive in a box that will be left on her doorstep with the rest of the packages. Please don’t do that to mom (or yourself) this year when there are better, fresher, and more cost-effective options right here in town.

Why choose designers’ choice?

If you want the most bang for you buck when ordering flowers, a “designers’ choice” bouquet is almost always the best option, no matter where you shop. Without having to replicate an image from the website, our designers are free to create something totally unique with the freshest flowers we have available in the shop.

You also won’t be disappointed by unrealistic expectations! No matter how delicious the dish, the food you receive at a restaurant will never look exactly like the picture on the menu. But that is what you ordered, so expectations have been set and that is what you expect the waiter to bring. If your food arrives looking less-than-camera-ready, you might be disappointed before even taking a bite.

We certainly don’t ever want you to be disappointed with your flowers, and we definitely don’t want to disappoint mom this Mother’s Day with an ordinary gift that looks like all the rest. Make this year one she will never forget with Mother’s Day flowers from your friends at Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop. Same-day delivery is available in Milwaukee, WI and surrounding areas, or anywhere in the USA for birthdays, anniversaries, new babies, get well wishes, thank you, sympathy, or even just because!

Six Ways to Help Support Small and Local Businesses

Looking back, 2020 was a devastating year for small businesses. Many closed permanently, and most that survived were forced to downsize or racially alter their business model in order to keep operating. In many instances, customers stepped in a big way with innovative efforts to support their favorite local and small businesses. Here are six things you can do if you wish to help in 2021.

1) Follow and engage with the business on social media

One of the easiest and most effective ways to support a small business without spending a dime is by following them on social media. It is easy to engage with their posts and stories by commenting, sharing with a friend, or simply liking their posts.

Social media engagement is extremely important to a small business. If their content receives enough good engagement, algorithms begin pushing it to the feeds of other users with similar interests. This exposure helps a small business get noticed by people who may not know it even exists yet, which is a very powerful way of helping them grow.

Make a Wish by Alfa Flower and Wedding Shop, Milwaukee, WI

2) Share your experiences with a small business by writing a review or offering a testimonial

People love sharing their experiences on social media but are much less likely to leave a review unless their experience was either outstanding or terrible. Unfortunately, many of those reviews come from extreme circumstances that fall outside the norm and do not necessarily reflect the overall reputation of the business or the views of their regular customers.

You can help by writing reviews and offering testimonials for the brands and small businesses you love. You can even go a step further and become an influencer by posting about them on social media to let your followers know about them. Good reviews will encourage new customers.

3) Buy a gift card to a local business

Another fantastic way to support small business is by purchasing gift cards. Their versatility makes them a great gift idea because the recipient can use them to order online or can choose to save them for a time when they feel comfortable enough to use them in person.

Gift cards also make wonderful gifts for the friends and loved ones when you cannot get together to celebrate. While many large gatherings have been put on hold for a later time, birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays are still taking place. Gift cards are easy to put in a card and mail anywhere in the country for the cost of a stamp.

4) Be understanding and patient

For local business reopening after the pandemic, the retail landscape looks completely different than it did before COVID-19. While some of the larger businesses were able to return to normal operations, many of the smaller shops have taken longer to adjust.

In most cases, small business owners rely on a number of constantly changing factors in order to make difficult business decisions. While they are doing what they feel is best to keep employees and customers safe, they are often forced to rely on trial and error until they discover what works best.

5) Sign up for their email list

Email lists are extremely valuable for small business owners because email is a direct line of communication to you. Many businesses offer exclusive discounts and sales through email and some even offer a special promotion just for signing up.

6) Make someone smile with flowers from Alfa

At Alfa Flower and Wedding Shop, our expert floral designers are still working hard every day to arrange beautiful flowers and our delivery drivers are out every day of the week making same-day contactless deliveries. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, or even “just because,” now is the perfect time to send some love with the gift of flowers. We offer same-day delivery in Milwaukee, WI or anywhere nationwide! Call us today at (414) 475-7080 or shop online 24/7.

Need a reason to celebrate in 2020? Sweetest Day is the best holiday you’ve (probably) never heard of

Everyone deserves a break after surviving the first three quarters of 2020 and we cannot think of better way to celebrate than donning our fanciest mask and enjoying Sweetest Day on Saturday, October 17.

If you are unfamiliar with Sweetest Day, you’re missing out one on of the best reasons we can think of to celebrate right now. Unlike holidays such as Christmas or Valentine’s Day, Sweetest Day does not have a religious affiliation.

It actually stemmed from a clever candy company employee named Herbert Kingston who promoted a holiday called Candy Day as a chance to bring happiness to those in society who were often forgotten.

He enlisted the help of several friends, and together they distributed over 20,000 boxes of candy to “newsboys, orphans, old folks, and the poor” in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Sweetest Day in the Year Committee was assisted in the distribution of candy by some of the biggest movie stars of the day including Theda Bara and Ann Pennington.

The idea began in Cleveland in 1922 and quickly spread through the Great Lakes areas and portions of the Upper Midwest. Newspapers and advertisements began referring to Candy Day as the “Sweetest Day of the Year.”

Sweet Peep Bouquet by Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop

That fairytale, however, was completely untrue. Candy Day was in fact established for the sole purpose of selling more candy, and Kingston was actually an advertiser. But by the time that was discovered, Candy Day had already been proven to be a big hit!

The cities of Detroit, Cleveland and Buffalo are among the biggest Sweetest Day celebrators according to Retail Confectioners International, a trade association comprised of chocolate and candy makers, some of its members report that Sweetest Day candy sales are bigger than those for Mother’s Day. 

Despite Sweetest Day’s questionable origins, the tradition stuck, and now Sweetest Day serves as a reminder to give back and take care of those who need extra attention.

it has truly become a reason to celebrate in several parts of the country who view it as similar to Valentine’s Day, although sometimes on a smaller scale without all the pageantry and romance involved.

Primarily a regional observance celebrated in the Great Lakes region and the Northeast, Sweetest Day is spreading to other areas of the country. People tend to take the Sweetest Day tradition with them when they move. Ohio is the top state for Sweetest Day sales, followed by Michigan and Illinois. Texas, California, and Florida are among the top 10 states in sales.

One reason why is that there seems to be less pressure tied to Sweetest Day, as it focuses on the actual thoughts behind the actions. It also occurs during the fall season, everyone’s favorite time of the year.

Now, the point of the day is to show friends, family and even strangers that you care by gifting them a note, a small treat, or any other act of kindness. We recommend flowers!

From Birthdays to Anniversaries to New Babies, Sympathy, and Get Well Soon flowers, Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop has you covered. We offer same-day delivery to Milwaukee, Wisconsin and surrounding areas as well as anywhere else in the US.

Window Shopping for Mom Has Never Been More Fun!

Are you still searching for the perfect gift for Mother’s Day? Now is the perfect time to get out for some fresh air and window shop like never before at Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop!

All week long we will be featuring special items and Mother’s Day products in our windows at 7001 W. North Ave. (at the corner of 70th and W. North) in Milwaukee.

It’s just like shopping online with a much larger screen – but without having to wait days for delivery! In addition to flowers and plants, we have tons of giftware, outdoor metal art, boutique items and so much more!

We’re constantly changing the displays so every day will be a brand new experience! We invite you to come back often and check out all the new items, or perhaps discover something that you’ve never noticed before.

Our doors may be closed, but our windows are wide open and we can’t wait for you to see what’s inside!

There’s something special about the month of March

Bright and Stunning by Alfa Flower and Wedding Shop, Milwaukee, WI

For many of us, March not only signifies the end of a bitterly long and cold winter. It serves as a warm (and welcoming) transition to spring, the season of growth and prosperity.

For sports fans, March signals the dawn of a new baseball season with the start of spring training, along with a thrilling end to “March Madness” and the college basketball season.

For outdoor enthusiasts, March offers a great chance to get outside of the house as local parks and green fields come to life with longer daylight hours and warm(er) temperatures.

For students (and teachers), March begins the official countdown to a much-deserved and well-earned “spring break.”

For gardeners and nature lovers, March signals a new growing season as we anxiously await Mother Nature’s’ first new sprouts to push their way up through the soil.

And who doesn’t love St. Patrick’s Day?! A whimsical day of celebration and parades – with a little luck thrown into the mix – always makes for a good day. That’s unless you forget to wear something green!

Simply put, March is a time for the senses to come alive!

Exotic Bells by Alfa Flower and Wedding Shop, Milwaukee, WI

It’s a time to bask in the bright, bold colors of spring and waft away at the unmistakably sweet aromas that only the current month can provide. March 2020 is busier than ever, with an early date for Easter on the calendar and the promise of a quick winter’s farewell from our beloved groundhogs. Whether your March came in quietly like a lamb, or it roared in like a lion, we hope you take the time to stop, take a deep breath, and smell the flowers!

If your blooms aren’t quite ready yet, or if you just want to get an early start by sharing some beautiful flowers with someone you love, Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop has you covered! We’re just as excited about spring and can’t wait to help you pick out some of nature’s most delightful floral creations. Give us a call today, and we’ll be happy to help you find something special!

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Sending a Message on Valentine’s Day

Be My Love bouquet by Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop, Milwaukee, WI

You often hear the saying, “it’s the thought that counts.” That may be true, but the thought isn’t the only thing that counts – especially not to your valentine on this special day.

Imagine a scenario such as this: your valentine is hard at work on Valentine’s Day when a delivery driver opens the door and delivers a box to a colleague’s desk. Your valentine looks on in excitement and a bit of envy as the colleague opens the box and begins pulling out roses one-by-one, before arranging them in the accompanying vase. It’s Valentine’s Day, do you really want your valentine assembling their roses at work?

As they think about you and wonder if a similar box will arrive for them, suddenly the door bursts open and someone in a Alfa Flower & Wedding shirt walks in with an eye-popping bouquet of the most vivid and beautiful long-stem red roses. Your valentine watches as the driver makes his way through the office, and tightly crosses their fingers in hopes of somehow willing the delivery driver to not make a sudden turn before reaching the desk.

Try as they might to hide the smile, it modestly grows wider and wider as the delivery driver approaches. By now, co-workers are peeking around office doors and over cubicle walls. The colleague in the front of the office takes a break from arranging the last of her flowers to see where the elegant roses are headed.

When the delivery driver finally makes it to her desk and confirms that she is indeed the recipient, her first thought will undeniably be of you – and just how special you made her feel.

When you send flowers, you’re sending a message. It’s easy if all you want to say with that message is: “I’m thinking of you.” A quick phone call or a brief visit to any number of websites will easily convey that message just fine. But doesn’t your Valentine deserve a stronger message than that – especially if it doesn’t take any extra time or effort on your part to let her know how you really feel about her? Send a message this year – a message that lets her know she deserves the very best.

A True Love’s Tulips by Alfa Flower and Wedding Shop, Milwaukee, WI

Sending roses on Valentine’s Day is a time-honored tradition, but not all roses are the same. Roses are beautiful, but fragile, flowers that need care and love – just like your Valentine. This year, think outside that battered box and send the very best message – by sending the very best roses. When you see or hear of roses being advertised at “special” prices, in most cases, you will need to add the shipping and handling along with some additional hidden fees. Suddenly, the remarkably-low price is no longer so low anymore.

At Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop, we would never stuff our roses in a box and drop them off with someone else to get delivered – we prefer to handle that ourselves. Grown only in the finest farms, and cared for by the finest professionals in the business, our roses are the finest and most beautiful roses you will find for your Valentine.

When you send flowers from Alfa, you can rest assured that not only are you sending the very best professionally designed and hand-delivered flowers, but you are always backed by an unconditional guarantee that is unmatched in the industry.

Exceed her expectations this year and leave the details to us. Call Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop today to make this Valentine’s Day one that will truly be remembered.

Mother’s Day Around the World

In the United States, we celebrate Mom every May with flowers and gifts, and perhaps treat her to a meal at her favorite restaurant. Sure, Mother’s Day is celebrated around the world, but other countries have their own spin on Mom’s special day too. Here are few of the more interesting ways that mothers are celebrated across the globe.

Australia

Janet Heyden started the first Mother’s Day in Australia in 1924. She began the tradition by asking school children and businesses for gifts to cheer up lonely and forgotten mothers at the Newington State Home for Women. Chrysanthemums are traditionally thought of as Mother’s Day flowers in Australia since they are naturally in season during May and end in “mum,” an affectionate term for “mother” in Australia.

Belgium

Belgian children celebrate their mothers by making little presents at school to give to their mothers in the early morning of Mother’s Day. The father will typically buy croissants and other sweet pastries that are served to her while she is still in bed at the beginning of a day filled with pampering. While most of Belgium celebrates Mother’s Day on the second Sunday of May, many Belgians consider August 15 to be the classical Mother’s Day and view the May observance as one started strictly for commercial reasons.

Egypt

Mother’s Day is celebrated on March 21 in Egypt to coincide with the first day of spring. It was first introduced by journalist Mustafa Amin in 1943. The idea was largely either ignored or ridiculed at the time by Egyptian politicians, but it was eventually adopted in 1956. When Amin was arrested and accused of being an American spy in 1965, unsuccessful attempts were made to change the name of “Mother’s Day” to “Family Day” to prevent the observance of reminding people of its founder.

Ethiopia

Mother’s Day is a three-day long celebration in Ethiopia, where it is celebrated in mid-fall at the end of the rainy season with a feast called “Antrosht.” Children bring the ingredients making a traditional hash recipe. Girls bring butter, cheese, vegetables and spices while the boys contribute a bull or lamb. Unlike many places where mothers needn’t lift a finger on Mother’s Day, in Ethiopia, the mom prepares the hash. Afterward, mom and daughter put butter on their faces and chests as part of the celebration ritual.

Nepal

In Nepal, Mother’s Day is known as “Aama ko Mukh Herne Din” which means “day to see mother’s face.” Many Nepalese people honor their late mothers by making a traditional pilgrimage to the Mata Tirtha ponds in hopes of seeing their deceased mother’s face. Pilgrims believe they will bring peace to their mother’s souls by visiting that sacred place.

Taiwan

Mother’s Day in Taiwan is held on the second Sunday in May to coincide with Buddha’s birthday and the traditional “washing the Buddha” ceremony where devotees pour fragrant water over Buddha statues as a way of symbolizing a fresh start in life.

No matter how we choose to celebrate, the day is all about mom. Let Alfa Flower & Wedding Shop help you treat her to something special this year and make her day one that she won’t soon forget.

Know Your Flower Etiquette

We all know that flowers make wonderful gifts for a variety of different circumstances. It’s hard to go wrong with choosing flowers as a gift, but there are a few rules of etiquette that should be followed when giving flowers on certain occasions.

Choosing the right flowers

  • While there are no definitive rules about what kind of flowers to send, certain types or colors of flowers may be inappropriate depending on the circumstance. A dozen red roses typically suggest romance and may send an unintended message if you are giving them to a co-worker or casual acquaintance.
  • White or light yellow flowers are usually the best choices for sympathy flowers. You certainly will want to avoid bright colored flowers in most instances.
  • Bright colored flowers, however, are almost always appropriate for happy occasions or milestones such as birthdays, anniversaries, congratulations, or thank yous.
  • When thanking someone, choose their favorite flower or favorite color instead of the cheapest option, the extra effort on your part will be appreciated and it makes your gratitude appear more personal and genuine.

Timing is everything

  • Some hospitals prohibit flowers, so check to make sure they’re allowed if you are sending them there. The local florists should know which hospitals accept them, and which do not. If the recipient’s hospital visit is brief, consider sending them to the home after they are dismissed.
  • While many people prefer to send sympathy flowers directly to the funeral home, it is perfectly acceptable to send them to the family’s home afterward. It’s even okay to wait a week or two in order to let the family know you’re still thinking of them.
  • Birthdays, holidays and anniversary are obvious occasions for sending flowers, but giving flowers “out of the blue” or “on a whim” are more impactful, especially if the recipient is not expecting a gift.
  • If you are late hearing about an occasion, but still wish to send flowers, be sure to mention that to the recipient – otherwise, the timing may seem odd to them.

Consider the recipient

  • Size matters, so consider where the flowers are going and what will happen to them after they’re delivered. Designs that are too small may not send the appropriate message you wish to convey, but larger gifts may be intrusive in small offices or rooms – especially if they’re shared with other people.
    Putting yourself in the recipient’s shoes and asking yourself how you would feel receiving the gift should give you a good idea of what is appropriate.
  • Do some research when sending flowers to people from different cultures. Some cultures have stigmas against certain colors or flowers, and you don’t want to misconstrue your message or create an obligation to reciprocate.
  • Sending sympathy flowers If a family specifically asks for donations in “lieu of flowers” is a breach of etiquette, even if you mean well. In circumstances such as this, a fruit basket or other memorial item may be appropriate if you would still like to send a gift.

Flowers are such an excellent way to convey a personal sentiment, so it’s important to consider the message you are wishing to express. When in doubt, give us a call and let us know the circumstance and we’ll help you select the perfect gift!