I am having a year full of "lasts." This is the last year of school for my oldest and the last year at home for my youngest. It is really starting to sink in that I am one of the older moms now and moving into another stage of life. (I am a little sappy these days!) So, this is my last year in MOPS. It will also be my last year helping with the steering team through creative activities. For our first meeting, we like to do some sort of craft or activity as we get to know one another. The past few years we have kind of mixed it all together with the welcome gift, too. Succulents just sort of seemed to go along with the theme this year, so we decided to plant succulents at the first meeting.
(Those aren't even the best succulents- just some that were left over after the meeting!)
First, I contacted a local greenhouse and ordered wholesale succulents. Then, I got terra cotta pots at Michaels (with a coupon!) and spray painted them with chalkboard paint. I picked up a bag of cactus soil and at the meeting each mom got to choose her own succulent and plant it in the little pot. We included succulent care instructions in the newsletter, too. Overall, this activity seemed to go over very well!
The rest of our welcome gift included a magnet with our meeting dates, designed by our awesome publicity team, a little bag of chalk to use on the pot, an index card with washi tape for an icebreaker activity, and a little print to reinforce the theme. It was all slipped into a little kraft paper bag and closed with more washi tape. (We had a lot left from last year's journal craft).
I ordered the prints with the Shutterfly app for free. They came out to 9 cents each with the shipping, though. I uploaded a few of my designs as files (also in 4x6 if you want to print them somewhere else and trim them down) and you can access them HERE. The graphics came from freepik.
I hope some of these ideas are helpful to other MOPS groups! Enjoy these days! Before you know it, you will be an old mom like me. :(