What to Bring to Your Office Birthday Party

by Lindsey A. on April 17, 2014

If you work in an office that celebrates birthdays, you may find yourself wondering what to bring to the office birthday party if you have either just started working there or perhaps worked there so long you are looking for some fresh ideas. Look no further!

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Not much of a cook? Your specialty could be finding some really great paper party goods. Themes are always fun so you might want to brainstorm some with co-workers before making the purchase. Be sure to get coordinating cups, napkins and paper plates as a bare minimum. But if you really want to make an impression, you can find some great printable party kits on Etsy that includes banners, toothpick flags, and much more.

If you are into making food, some great birthday party food includes bite size appetizers that easily pop in the mouth without making a mess. Remember, you are in an office environment where people frequently stand chatting and eating and don’t want to spend the remainder of their day wearing what they ate at the office birthday party.

If you want to bring food, look over the food list, if one exists, and check out what others are bringing. This is a good idea for two reason, so you don’t duplicate someone else’s dish and it can also help you come up with an idea to compliment the selection. For example, if someone is bringing in pie, why not pick up some gourmet flavored ice cream?

If you have a recipe that is a fan favorite, bring that if you know it is a proven crowd pleaser. It’s a nice and thoughtful touch to put a little hand made sign using a toothpick fork stating what the dish is and from who’s kitchen. If your dish contains nuts etc, it is also a great idea to add a little sign stating that for those with nut allergies. You will be viewed of as a considerate and observant co-worker.

Beverages is another way you can shine without having to ever light the oven. Don’t just bring an ordinary bottle of soda though. Why not whip up a great batch of homemade lemonade or ice tea complete with adding some slices of lemon and bringing in a plastic pitcher to serve it once there.

You don’t have to spend a lot to make an impression at your office birthday party. You just have to give it a little thought!

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Gallery Collection New for 2014 Christmas Cards

by Evangeline R. on April 16, 2014

The Gallery Collection has a beautiful new series of Christmas cards for 2014. There is sure to be something for everyone!


Starry Christmas Wishes Card

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Top 10 Employee Anniversary Gift Ideas

by Janna D. on April 14, 2014

Celebrating an employee’s anniversary is an important way of letting him or her know that you appreciate the commitment that they show to your company.

If the employee has been with the company for an extended length of time, (such as 25 years) a fantastic idea would be to have a dinner or party in the employee’s honor. At the party, the guest of honor can be presented with their anniversary gift. In addition to a gift, it’s always smart to circulate an anniversary card through the office so the entire staff can sign it and pass along their good wishes.


Of course, anniversaries can be celebrated for shorter milestones, such as 5, 10, 15 or 20 years. Many companies present employees with a catalog of gifts they can choose from. This may be less personal, but it ensures that each employee is getting a gift that will prove to be useful.

However, if you’ve decided to make a choice without the help of a catalog, here is a helpful list of employee anniversary gift ideas

  1. Tickets to a sporting or music event—A great choice for someone who has a devotion to a specific team or band. This will provide your employee with wonderful memories for years to come.
  2. A personalized or engraved plaque or trophy—This could be something the employee displays at home or in their office.
  3. Jewelry—Diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but any nice piece of jewelry will make an employee feel appreciated.
  4. A watch—Although a watch is technically a piece of jewelry, it deserves a category of its own because it’s one of the most well known, classic corporate gifts.  The reason? It serves as an important symbol of the years of connection between the company and the employee. Often, the watch can be engraved or have the company name on the face.
  5. Small Kitchen Appliance—A coffeemaker, blender or toaster. Any of the everyday kitchen conveniences can be given as an anniversary gift. While it may not be what someone thinks of when they think of a special gift, it is practical!
  6. A golf club or set of clubs—Golf enthusiasts are always looking to improve their game, and nothing makes them happier than a specially selected club. This could also be personalized to make it more special.
  7. A “Foodie” gift—This could be anything related to food. A basket of gourmet chocolates, a gift certificate to a restaurant, an expensive bottle of wine, or a subscription to a fruit of the month club. Foodie gifts are usually a great choice because almost everyone loves to eat. They also have the benefit of being appealing to either gender.
  8. A “Techie” gift—There are so many different computer gadgets out today, there could be a top ten list of technology related gifts of their own. We all know someone who has to have the newest model of everything.  A techie gift would be the perfect choice for them.  Some ideas are: the latest tablet, e-book reader, video game console, or Smartphone.
  9. A contribution to a charity or a cause your employee supports—You really have to know your employee with this one.  Not everyone welcomes a gift to someone else with open arms.  A charitable employee who is always giving of their time might find this to be the perfect gift.
  10. A gift card to a store that the employee is known to frequent—Although some people may not think a gift card is as personal as an actual gift, if you know your employee loves basketball, a gift card to a sporting goods store is a great idea.

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What To Write In Your Managers Birthday Cards

by Lindsey A. on April 10, 2014

Sending or giving someone a birthday card requires some thought or at least I think it should. I like to pick birthday cards that reflect the relationship I have with the person. Some are more light-hearted, others more heart felt and some are more on the professional level.

Birthday Card

I generally don’t find it difficult to pick a card for my co-workers or boss but what to say inside can be more of a challenge particularly when trying to figure out what to write in a the birthday cards I sign and give to the managers at my company.

With those I have a close relationship with, I tend to write something a little warmer like

“Mark, Have a really awesome birthday!” or “Amanda, I hope you have a great birthday, you deserve it!” but that what do you write when you don’t really know someone all that well?

Certainly, a more generic closing is always a safe way to go if you don’t have much of a relationship with that person such as writing something like “Best Wishes to you on your Birthday!” or “Tim, I hope you celebrate your birthday doing all the things you most enjoy”. But let’s face it, safe can be a bit boring.

So what I like to do is personalize it a bit without getting too personal if you know what I mean. Writing a note in your manager’s card can demonstrate you pay attention at the workplace. Think back to something you heard your manager say that he or she enjoys doing. Does your boss like to fish? How about something like “Jerry, I hope you find some time to fit in a little fishing on your special day!” Or acknowledge your hard working boss (yes, your boss is a person too who appreciates being appreciated just like we all do) by writing something like “Danielle, I hope you find a little time to relax and enjoy your Birthday. Have a very Happy Birthday!” You have to be careful you don’t sound like you are just trying to suck up to the boss so I recommend keeping your birthday cards message to your manager positive and subtle.

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How to Deal With Workplace Bullying

by Dolly A. on April 7, 2014

There has been a renewed recognition of bullying in the schools of America. Most have adopted a no bullying policy that is strictly adhered to. What is under recognized is the amount of workplace bullying that is practiced in many companies. Whether it is instigated by a superior or a peer, it is an insidious attack that comprises the company’s values and undermines the victim’s health and well being.


Workplace bullying takes many forms and is often hard to prove. It masks itself as joking, sarcasm and often an undervaluing of an employee’s performance. It adds additional stress to the victim which can translate into lost work hours and often increased health problems causing absenteeism and lost wages. Although it is not quite as blatant as sexual harassment, bullying may have a far longer run and cause extreme problems for the victim. Company morale can plummet causing a loss in productivity. Bullying often affects more than the victim, it will also have a profound affect on people who witness it. It will definitely cause a change to the company culture if left unchecked.

Statistics from the 2007 WBI-Zogby survey shows that 13% of US employees report being bullied currently, 24% claim to have been bullied in the past and 12% say they have witnessed bullying in the workplace. This statistic indicates a real problem that has caused 16 US states to initiate legislation directly citing bullying. Many countries around the world have already passed legislation, including the United Kingdom, Sweden, Canada and Ireland.

The first step in combating bullying is to recognize when it occurs. Looking at the right indicators is important. Is the behavior repetitive? Is it escalating? Is the object of the bullying unable to successfully defend them? Is the behavior attributable to mal-intent? Certainly these are red flags that should at least make us investigate further.

Studies have recognized that there are 5 types of bullying behavior in the workplace:

  1. a distinct threat to professional status- belittling, humiliation, intimidating and misuse of discipline.
  2. a clear threat to personal standing among colleagues-inappropriate jokes, teasing, name calling, insults, and sarcasm.
  3. Isolating an individual-lessen opportunities, professional & personal separation, and excluding from functions, meetings or information.
  4. Extra workload-adding impossible deadlines, disruptions to the work flow
  5. lack of recognition-good work that is unacknowledged, meaningless tasks, constant reminding of mistakes.

Micromanagement and disrespect for an individual may not seem like bullying but it is subtle and long lasting and works to deprive a person of confidence and self esteem causing additional stress levels. Bullying in the workplace is often compared to domestic violence. It keeps the victim off balance with the hope that it will end and the fear that more abuse will occur at any time unexpectedly.

Exterminating bullying from the workplace will only take place when we recognize where and when it occurs. If you are being bullied you should make a detailed record with dates, examples and comments made. You should then take it further up the chain. If it is a superior doing the bullying go to their superior or to the personnel department and as a last resort the head of the company. If all these steps fail, you can go to the National Labor Board, where they will expect you to have facts, dates and any documentation that can be provided.  The best course of action is to refuse to be bullied, refuse to allow anyone else to be bullied and shine the light of day on the problem, wherever it occurs.

You can read more about bullying in the workplace at these sources:

Adams, Andrea – Bullying at Work: How to Confront and Overcome It

Barnes, Patricia G. – Surviving Bullies, Queen Bees & Psychopaths in the Workplace

Brodsky, Carol M. – The Harassed Worker


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The Gallery Collection, as part of our charitable donations program, recently donated 10 assortment boxes of greeting cards to St. John Bosco High School for use in auction at their 3rd Annual Braves Gala and Auction. The assortment boxes included Holiday Cards, Religious Holiday Cards, Birthday Cards, and All Occasion Cards.

Religious Assortment Box

St. John Bosco High School is a Catholic high school in the Salesian tradition. It strives to provide a safe environment for learning and celebrating Christian life, embrace diversity as an advantage for the school community, encourage the highest standards of excellence in academic, athletic and community efforts, and give assistance to all in need of our passion for living and learning in the ways of St. John Bosco.

If you are interested in learning more about St. John Bosco High School, please visit their website at http://www.bosco.org/.

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Birthday Cards For Business And For Pleasure

by Brenda Z. on April 3, 2014

Birthdays are a great time to show someone how much you care and appreciate them. And so, birthday cards are the perfect way to show you remembered their special day. There are many choices at The Gallery Collection for you to choose from. There are cards appropriate for the office, as well as cards more suitable for personal use. I once received a birthday card from the office I worked for, and it was such a pleasant surprise! I never thought my birthday would be so significant as to receive birthday cards. It sure did make me feel more appreciated for everything I did.

Birthday Cards

Birthdays are special since they only occur once a year. For business, you may opt for a birthday card with a “Happy Birthday” and presents on the cover. If you’d like to show some of the personalities in the office, you may like the card that features several characters on the cover. If you are looking for personal cards, my personal favorite would be cards that have the delicious birthday cakes on the cover. I also love the cards that have cupcakes sprinkled all over. Who knew birthday cards could be so much fun? Make sure to choose your favorite for the next special birthday in your life.

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Thank You Notes After A Job Interview

by Brenda Z. on March 31, 2014

We are living during a very competitive time, in which anything and everything you do can impact your current or future job. It’s quite difficult to stand out today among so many applications, all after that one position. But what if I told you there actually is a way to shine above the rest? It’s as simple as sending a Thank you note right after your interview. Yep, that’s right. Who would have thought something as simple as a Thank you card can go so far as to have you stand out at a possible job position?


Thank you cards show that you are genuinely thankful for the opportunity to have been interviewed at the job you applied for. It shows that you truly care about the position, and also shows you are the best candidate. It is very rare to receive thank you cards today. And so if you send one out to a possible employer, it shows you went out of your way to personally thank them for sitting with you on an interview. I have sent out thank you cards numerous times, and even if I hadn’t received the position I was always remembered throughout the years and was called first when a position opened up. It doesn’t take much time, but it leaves a lasting impression. Don’t be like the rest, take the time to write a thank you card…it won’t go unnoticed!

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As part of The Gallery Collection’s charitable donation program, we recently made a donation of 100 holiday cards to Saint Joseph Academy in Bogota, New Jersey. These holiday cards will be part of a silent auction that takes place during their 5th Annual Mystery Dinner Theater fundraiser.

Maella Adoration of the Shepherds Peace Card

Saint Joseph’s is a well-established Academy with a legacy of 70 years educating the children of the Bogota /Teaneck area. The primary purpose of Saint Joseph Academy is to challenge and educate students spiritually, morally, intellectually, emotionally, socially, and physically for their future yet allowing them to be children in the present.

If you are interested in learning more about Saint Joseph Academy, please visit their website at http://www.sjsbogota.com/index.php.


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Cheap Birthday Cards Can Leave A Bad Impression

by Evangeline R. on March 27, 2014

I am a true believer in, “you get what you pay for”. Especially with, birthday cards. I understand people are very busy these days, But buying a cheap birthday card??? To me it means I wasn’t thought of at all. I got a birthday card last year that was not even cut correctly. I was a little upset that a very close friend of mine was the one who sent it.

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I know that choosing a birthday card shouldn’t be a hassle, but a little thought would be nice. I look through several cards before choosing the correct one for that person.  I even have an assortment box from The Gallery Collection for emergencies. They have very nice greetings in them. And I can add my own touch where needed. There are no excuses to buy cheap cards. There’s a reason why they are on sale. Most of them have boring greetings, or the writing is off center, or the whole card was cut wrong.

If you care about the person, you should care about the card you send. I’m not saying to buy the most expensive card out there, but put some thought in buying the card. You may even find that the sayings on the card match the person perfectly. Heck I’ve been known to actually change a few words on cards from time to time to make them say exactly what I need them to say. Let’s face it, most cards have most of what you want on them, but you may have to fix it a little. My family has done this for years. We look forward to seeing what changes have been made on our cards. So when looking for a birthday card for family or friends, please remember, would it be a card that you want???

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