Tag: Holiday Decorations

Protect Your Floors This Holiday Season

The holidays are fast approaching and in no time, friends and family will be descending upon your home for yummy meals and holiday cheer. Get your floors ready for the increase in foot traffic with these quick fixes:

1. Save your floor cleaning for last.

There's a reason why people say "cleaning from top to bottom". Save the mopping, vacuuming, and sweeping for last, that way your floors are nice and clean before people start showing up.

2. Get creative with your coverings.

Place a festive door mat or carpet runner at the front door to absorb slush and snow. You'll be able to keep your freshly cleaned floors clean, as well as prevent slips or falls.

3. Put pads on the legs of furniture.

If you're planning on moving any furniture to make way for more people, consider putting felt pads on the bottom of chairs and couches. Not only will it make it easier to slide the furniture across the room, but it'll protect your carpet or wood floors from scratches.

4. Corral the clutter.

Do you walk into your home, only to trip over stray shoes? Add a boot tray by the door to catch melting snow or mud, that way it's not melting on the floor.

5. Call in the professionals.

There's something to be said about getting your carpets and floors professionally cleaned. If your carpets are looking a little worse for wear, it's probably time to call in the professionals.

Thanksgiving Preparations

With Thanksgiving less than a week away, hopefully your holiday preparations have already begun. Just in case you need a boost before your home is full of your family and out-of-town guests, here a few things you can do this weekend to get ready for turkey day!
·         Give your house an all-over cleaning. Don't waste time with hidden areas and deep clutter; focus on the places your guests will most likely travel, like the entryway, bathrooms, the dining room and the living room.
·         Tidy up the front porch, check porch lighting and add a few fresh potted plants or a wreath on the door. 
·         Clean out the fridge and freezer. You’ll need enough room in your refrigerator to store all those tasty leftovers. For tips on how to clean out your refrigerator, check out this post from our partners at Milestone Realty Consultants.
·         Review the menu and gather all the recipes in one spot. Make a list of all the ingredients you’ll need to purchase.
·         Shop for and begin cooking dishes that can be made ahead and frozen, like pie dough. If you are buying a frozen turkey, make sure you buy it ahead of time so it has time to thaw in the fridge. If you need ideas for tasty treats that can be made ahead of time, check out Real Simple’s list here
·         Set your dinner table. Iron out the wrinkles on your table cloths (if you’re using any) and set up your table decorations. Find decoration ideas on our Pinterest page! Use sticky notes to set up the layout of where you want each dish to be placed.
·         Write the cooking plan (oven temperatures and cooking times) on a whiteboard or tape it to the wall, somewhere that you and your helpers can easily check it. You won't have added stress of people coming up to you and asking how long something has to cook for--it's already written down for them!
Do you have any other Thanksgiving preparations?

Carve the Perfect Pumpkin

With Halloween just a few days away, decorate a perfect looking pumpkin with the help of these step-by-step instructions!

1. Pick out a pumpkin.

Examine the rind. It should be firm, uniform in color, and free of cuts, bruises, and blemishes.  Make sure that the stem doesn’t look brown and dry. And don’t use the stem as a handle, since even a healthy one can break off. Pick up a pumpkin by its base instead. Give the pumpkin a knock. A thumping sound means the pumpkin is solid, with no internal defects, rot, or soft spots. You should try to have an idea of what you want to do with your pumpkin before you pick it out. If you want to carve an intricate design in your pumpkin, it may be easier to carve on a flatter surfaced pumpkin. 

2. Carve your pumpkin.

Make sure you don’t carve your pumpkin too early! Once a pumpkin is cut, they usually last 4-5 days before they start to rot. With a serrated knife, carefully cut an opening around the stem of the pumpkin, leaving a small notch on the back. It will be easier to put the top back on the pumpkin when you’re finished. 

3. Scoop out the goop.

Use a large spoon to remove the pulp and scrape the sides clean of stringy pieces. Separate the seeds from the pulp for a tasty treat later. Make sure you don’t put anything down your garbage disposal. It will clog up the drain and be a big hassle!

4. Start drawing.

Use a marker to start drawing a face on your pumpkin. If you aren’t an artist, you can use a free pumpkin stencil like the ones shown here or here.