Gift Jar – 5 Ideas for Homemade Holiday Presents

If you are looking for one good idea for a craft item that you can use for everyone on your gift list, then look no further. A gift jar is the perfect present that can be personalized to suit anyone. The basic concept is to take any size or shape jar, fill with contents that the recipient would enjoy and decorate to suit the theme.

1. Mix Jar. Think brownies, cookies and soups – any of these foods could be used for a mix jar gift. Just layer the dry ingredients in the jar (don’t just dump them all in together – presentation is important), then neatly print or type the recipe on card stock and attach to the neck of the jar with twine or ribbon. Be sure to include on the recipe card all wet ingredients that must be added.

2. Beach Jar. Make this gift jar for the beach bum in your life. Fill the jar with seashells or sea glass (either can be purchased in bulk at a craft supply store). Cover the top surface of the lid with glue and dip in sand. Allow this to dry, then glue a seashell in the middle of the lid. Finish by wrapping thin rope or twine around the edge of the lid.

3. Candle Jar. Purchase a set of small jars and a candle-making kit at a craft supply store and make jar candles for everyone on your list. By making them yourself, not only are you saving money, but you are also able to personalize the candles for each recipient. Different scents and colors can be used to make your candle jars unique. Attach a small box of matches or a matchbook to the jar with ribbon or glue.

4. Food Jar. Fill these jars with any dry, nonperishable food item that you think your friends or family would enjoy. Popcorn, coffee beans and jelly beans are just a few of the kinds of foods that would make a great gift and also look good in a jar. If the contents are something that need to be measured when used (such as coffee), attach a small scoop to the outside of the jar with ribbon or twine.

5. Toy Jar. This is perfect for the kids on your list. Bear in mind that you don’t need to use glass jars; plastic jar-shaped containers work just as well (as long as they are clear and the contents will show) and remove the risk involved with giving an item to a child that might possibly break and cause harm. Fill these jars with a colorful item, such as rubber bouncy-balls, play dough (you can either fill a jar with small containers or layer the play dough in the jar) or crayons. Finish with ribbon tied around the neck of the jar and consider attaching something with the ribbon that relates to the toy(s) inside (for instance, a jar filled with play dough could have shape cutters attached).

Five Principles of Great PowerPoint Presentation

1. Use as little text as possible
The main purpose of a presentation is to aid in orally and visually transferring information. The main concentration should be in building a neat and interesting speech. It is impossible to read all the text while listening, and putting too much text in the presentation can confuse the listener and disrupt concentration.

2. Use high quality pictures
If you don’t have good pictures that really illustrate ideas and can aid the talk, don’t use them! If the pictures are not clear and can be misunderstood by the audience, they can cause more damage than help. Use only clear, high quality and relevant pictures!

3. Keep conventional and tidy layout.
don’t put messy and unordered information and graphics all over the slide! Each slide should be carefully designed with title, simple layout, 1 to 4 pictures, with the relevant text, to help focus the audience.

4. Don’t use unnecessary animations.
Even more annoying than unclear pictures are stupid animation. Animations can be great if they illustrate something. You can use movies and animations that have a real point, any other animation is not decorating the slide, but distracting and irritating.

5. Put titles on each slide.
Finally, don’t forget to give a relevant title to each slide. This can help the listeners to keep up and focus the central ideas, and can help you associate each slide to its subject during the presentation.

Remember: PowerPoint presentations are great aid in speaking but can be easily destroy a good lecture if not done properly.

Business Networking – The 10-Minute Presentation

In most structured networking groups, members have the opportunity to do a ten-minute presentation at their local chapter meeting to further educate their fellow members about their business, the types of leads they seek, their unique selling points and the ways in which members can assist them. The one-page business description can be used as an outline for this presentation.

In addition, the ten-minute presentation should contain ideas or directions regarding ways in which members can find leads for you or assist you in other ways. This portion of the presentation could contain information about the types of referral or strategic partners that would be best for you, what types of questions to ask to uncover leads, materials like discount coupons or free samples that could be shared to help generate first time customers, etc. Most members do a good job of describing their businesses but few do a good job of instructing others on how to help them. This portion of the presentation is extremely important, because your fellow members want to help with your business, but don’t always know how to help.

The purposes of your ten-minute presentation are to focus your chapter members on helping you and to provide them with the information they need to help you. Conclude your ten-minute presentation with a call to action or specific assignment that members can easily complete. For example, you could provide each member with coupons they can distribute to a specific target customer group with which they all have contact. Or, you could identify specific types of referral partners and ask members to think through their contacts and let you know if they know anyone fitting that description. The simplicity of these tasks increases the likelihood that your fellow members will complete them. The feeling of accomplishment resulting from their ability to fulfill the simple assignment will predispose them to take additional steps to help you.