If you’re doing an invitation or place cards, this is a great opportunity for little ones (or even big ones!) to do a “homemade with love” project. Using regular card stock, you can choose from a multitude of stickers, stamps, personal drawings of birds or butterflies, or use actual elements such as dried flowers or shells to decorate and embellish your invitations and place cards.
To set the tone for the party right from the start, it’s nice to tease your guests with what they might expect right from the front door. Any kind of natural items you can gather make a terrific wreath or door decoration, with maybe a photo of mom attached.
This is a great opportunity to set up your table outside, if possible, in the midst of Mother Nature’s splendor. If that’s not possible, inside is fine with lots of outdoor ingredients and you can always buy a CD that has the sounds of nature on it and have that playing during brunch.
Taking your cue from natural outdoor components, your centerpiece can be numerous things – a bird’s nest (faux or abandoned, of course!), bird houses, interesting shells, fruits, nuts, or glorious spring flowers. Another fun thing to do is to have a small item at each place setting to replicate or enhance the centerpiece, such as the example in the accompanying photo with a small nest, eggs, and bird.
I can't tell you how many times I have used these little birds and nests! The yellow plates are from Tiffany's and were given to me by the board at the end of my Junior League president's year.
Menu selections for this type of party are very simple and wholesome – the freshest of your garden bounty, served in its simplest form. Everything is very easy, very colorful, and very healthy.
After brunch, it’s time for the real fun to start! All parties should have some element of entertainment or participation and going on a nature exploration is a charming activity for all ages. The idea for the Mother Nature Mother’s Day Brunch emanated from a “nature journal” I bought so that I could spend some quality time with my grandchildren and it turned out to be an inspiring book for all ages. Who doesn’t like to get outside and see nature close up? Even the most indoor loving people enjoy spying a lady bug making her rounds up and down a rose petal or a mother bird feeding her chirping babies.
The little silver collecting pails I bought at Target for $1 a piece, the binoculars we gave our grandson for Christmas, the magnifying glass is antique from my collection, and the bloom is from a passion flower plant in our backyard.
Giving each person or couple the appropriate “tools” to explore with, such as binoculars, a magnifying glass, scissors, and a pail, box or bag for putting your treasures in, are just the things they need to be successful explorers.
If you are exploring with small children, make sure they are accompanied by an adult so they do not disturb active nests or any dangerous plants or insects.
My granddaughter, Marina, exploring nature.
You could even make a game of it and create a scavenger hunt. Survey your yard or public space such as a park, and see what you might list as items to find. If you are not in an area where gathering is allowed, give each team a camera to photograph each find.
Another option for a quiet activity is to give each person a sketch pad and colored pencils or markers and have them document each discovery in their notebook. This is especially nice if you want to encourage artistic talent or want a permanent record of your finds.
After your adventure, you can either preserve your treasures in a shadow box, or your drawing or photo in a frame, and present it to Mom as the perfect gift. A simple and fun “green” Mother’s Day!