Mother's Day idea: Throw a tea party!

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- Creating something out-of-the-ordinary for mom doesn't have to be difficult this Mother's Day. You can make her feel special by creating a unique experience with items you already have.

It's an idea Erika Monroe-Williams was happy to share with us.

The former 3TV news anchor and host is now the creator of The lifestyle expert says that through several failed attempts, she has become an expert in what will work, when it comes to entertaining. She also says it doesn't have to be stressful or expensive.

First, take a look at your inventory.

This is the time to pull out items you already have. Remember, they don't have to match.

Keep in mind most people do not have a full tea set. Second-hand stores like Goodwill and My Sister's Attic often sell single tea cups and serving plates.

Cake plates offer a great way to show off colorful glazed cookies.

A two- or three-tier petit-four dish is a must. This will stand as the centerpiece on the table. This serving dish doesn't have to be fancy. In fact, for a pretty presentation small flowers can be strategically placed between finger sandwiches and scones.

Second, choose a theme.

Whether you plan a whimsical experience or one that is more traditional and formal, this will help to set the tone of the entire experience.

If you do plan to mix and match your pieces, using table linens with the same theme will help to pull the entire table together.

Small vases with a single flower can add simple elegance. You and also use strands of beads between serving pieces for an added pop of color.

Finally choose your menu.

Cucumber sandwiches are a traditional tea offering. You can also offer delicious scones.

For those hosting younger guests, why not offer peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches? Use cookie cutters to create finger sandwiches shaped in the form of a heart.

Monroe-Williams says the ideas are endless and as long as you'll use a little creativity, you'll have a whole lot of fun.

For more ideas and "Erika's Secret Weapons," check out