Now that we are in the ‘ber months, it’s the time to start cleaning out your decorations. Go through what you have for Halloween, Christmas, and Thanksgiving, and make sure that everything works, anything that’s broken gets thrown out and anything you haven’t used in a couple of years can get donated. This way, you are making sure that you aren’t holding on to something that won’t work anyway, and you’re getting a headstart on cleaning and organizing your garage storage space.
Hosting the perfect indoor/outdoor party can be a little difficult, but not when you follow our tips. These types of parties are perfect for taking advantage of the beautiful spring nights, as well as work well for smaller spaces in that your guests can be more spread out rather than crammed into one small space. I’m a huge fan of them in the fact that I can get some fresh air if needed, while also enjoying a beautiful night and my friends’ company.
Indoor/Outdoor Party Tips
- Twinkle lights will go a long way. If you have a porch or deck or patio area, add some twinkle lights around the perimeter. They’ll add a wonderful ambiance, while also allowing you light to see, but without those harsh floodlights.
- Prepare a summery spread. This means you can choose light options like different salads, charcuterie boards, fruits and vegetables, antipasto options, and this gives your guests a variety of foods to choose from to munch on all night long.
- Keep mosquitos away naturally with citronella plants. Not only are they wonderful, leafy green plants, but they are natural mosquito repellants. Place some around the patio border for decoration and bug control. You can also light some citronella candles around the border to help with the pest control.
- Set up the food inside. Let your guests wander outside with their drinks, but keep the food inside to keep bugs, pollen, and other gross things out of the food. If you have a large dining table, set up your spread there or on the kitchen counters in a buffet style so everyone can just grab a plate and then move the party outdoors.
- Use melamine plates. They won’t shatter if someone drops them, but they also won’t create waste in the same way that paper plates and cups do. They also are easy to wash and store, are fairly cheap, and come in fun colors and prints.
- Have a rain plan. It’s spring, so those spring showers could come at any point. If you have a covered patio or screen porch, your guests will be covered even if it rains. If not, have a rain plan and a secondary area for your guests to mingle.
- Remember to turn the AC off. Odds are you will have doors and windows left open, which means you’ll want to make sure you aren’t trying to cool the outside world.
- Use a variety of outdoor chairs, pillows, and cushions for seating. Some of your guests will likely wander around and prefer to stand, but for those who don’t, offer a variety of outdoor seating. This way, everyone can have a seat if they want it, and the different layers will look wonderful.
Hopefully some of these indoor/outdoor party tips will help you throw the party of your dreams. These can be great for graduation, birthdays, and even just because.
Whether you’ve changed up your color scheme or just aren’t using certain ornaments or decorations anymore, donate them. If they’re in good shape, give to those less fortunate, and help them have the decorations for Christmas.
No one is perfect, no not even your neighbor who seems to have it all together. I know so much of our time spent is trying to be a perfect person, with the perfect life, but that’s just not reality. So instead, let’s try to embrace imperfections.
I’ve always been a perfectionist, even when I was a kid. I strived to get all A’s in school, be amazing at whatever sport I tried, etc. I’m still an overachiever, and I did manage to get A’s in school, but I didn’t get all A’s. In fact, I nearly got a C in Geometry Honors, and that truly crushed me in high school because it didn’t fit the image of this perfect girl I was trying to be. I colored my hair, because in my mind, being blonde was more perfect than being a brunette. I also started straightening my hair every day, because again, in my mind, straight hair meant perfection. I can’t really explain to you how that worked, but I can say I have learned since then to embrace the imperfections. I went back to my natural hair color, and now, if I want a change, it’s because I want to try a new color, not because blondes are somehow more perfect than brunettes. I learned to embrace my naturally wavy hair. It’s not perfect, it gets frizzy, and it fights me on styles certain days, but that’s ok. It’s me, it’s what I was given to work with, and it’s not always perfect, but it’s a part of myself.
I feel like sometimes we get so caught up in giving off this appearance of perfect that we lose ourselves. Society puts so much pressure on us, especially this time of the year, to be perfect with the holidays. Holidays are messy, there’s family in town, so things are more high-stress and things get broken, and things don’t go quite as planned, and maybe your Christmas light display isn’t as grand as the one next door. That doesn’t mean it’s bad, that doesn’t mean you failed Christmas. If you burned a batch of cookies, that’s ok, it happens to the best of us. If you forgot to make the vegetables along with the rest of the main meal, it happens. Just learn to roll with those moments and embrace the imperfections. Maybe you burned the cookies because you were out building a snowman and lost track of time. That to me sounds more perfect than missing out on that amazing memory to have a nice batch of cookies.
Life is messy, there’s so much of it that we can’t control, and that can make us all want to have these picture-perfect moments. But I can tell you, some of the strongest memories for me, they weren’t in picture-perfect moments, they were in messy moments, moments where things got forgotten because we were spending time as a family or moments where, the most important thing was a family game of football, not how perfectly decorated the house was. Enjoy the mess. It’s those little moments that make up a big, beautiful life.
When you’re putting up holiday decorations, decorate one room at a time. You’ll see immediate results, and feel less overwhelmed than jumping around from one room to another, never really completing one.
If you’ve gotten a live Christmas tree, make sure to give it a day or two to fall down before decorating. This allows it to resume its natural shape.
Now that Thanksgiving is over, you can officially decorate for Christmas! (If you couldn’t hold off that long, it’s ok) . Pick one room at a time to decorate, and completely finish that room with your color and decor scheme.