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May 26

A Day to Remember: Tips for Throwing the Perfect Memorial Day Party

Memorial Day Cupcakes

Preparing your home for Memorial Day also means getting ready for summer. If you plan to host an event with 10 people or 50 people, here are a few simple, but very important things to do now that will ensure a successful event.

  1. Decorate with flare in red, white and blue

Honoring the sacrifices of those who served the United States means paying respect to the Armed Forces. It’s easy to incorporate this into your party by using red, white and blue coloring throughout your home’s decorations. Add streamers to doorways and walls. Choose ribbons and clothes in American flag stripes. Be as creative as you like to create a patriotic theme.

  1. Prepare your home with care

Before inviting anyone over, you should do a walkthrough of your home. Remove any items that may be in the way of the space you need for entertaining, and consolidate furniture as much as possible. Don’t forget, this applies to items that don’t offer seating or table space so you’ll have room for people to walk through the home. This is also a good time put away items that are easily broken or those you simply don’t want out for the event.

Also, before you send out those invitations (which of course can have a patriotic theme to them as well) determine:

  • How many people can comfortably sit in your home based on available seating
  • Consider if you can add additional seating
  • Consider using outdoor spaces (garage, backyard, deck space) for additional seating
  • Invite those you wish, but don’t overdo it based on what your home can maintain

Having too many people could limit the ability of people to move around easily.

  1. Get the grill ready

Because Memorial Day is the beginning of summer, there’s nothing like grilling or barbecuing some great meals for your guests in the backyard. If you have a grill, be sure to inspect it and confirm that it’s still in good working order after those winter months. You may even want to grill a meal or two before your party just to ensure everything is in working order.

A grill also isn’t necessary to a Memorial Day party. Preparing food on the stove and in the oven is a nice alternative; just keep an eye on your home’s temperature.

  1. Establish areas of the home for various purposes

To ensure you’re using your space efficiently, map out activities for each room. For instance, your backyard and kitchen may be the center of where people go to enjoy the food you’ve prepared and the living room can serve as your designated place to sit and talk in a quieter setting. For eating, you could also designate another area, such as the dining room or picnic tables outside. Another important area to consider is the bathroom. Make sure it is easy to get to and from the bathroom and that there are ample toiletry items like soap and toilet paper. If you hope to limit access to some areas, place furniture along those paths or close and lock doors when possible.

  1. Keep the temperature under control

In the summer, the more people that enter your home, the more important it is to have the air conditioning on; especially if you’ll be cooking indoors as well. It won’t only keep the area cool, but will also help to improve airflow. If you don’t plan to use the air conditioning, use fans and open the windows throughout the home instead.

Like most parties, having the best Memorial Day celebration requires a little planning. Following our tips and adding a few twists to the setting, food, and entertainment, as TheNest.com suggests, is sure to make the holiday a blast for your friends and family. Our current and upcoming homes in Northern and Southern California are perfect for setting the stage for people to come together and have fun. Enjoy your Memorial Day and have a great summer!

May 18

New Family, New Home: 5 Things Young Families Should Consider When Buying

New, Young Family

Buying a new home is an exciting and, sometimes, overwhelming experience.  New families looking to set down roots need to think about various factors that those without children don’t: daycares, school districts, safety features in the home and outside, enriching activities as your kids grow up, and more.  Here are a few points to guide your way to the home your family will flourish in:

1. Space

When you’re ready to buy a property, think carefully about how much square footage you really need. You don’t want to break the bank on an enormous property. However, if you’re planning to grow your family, you’ll want enough room for everyone. A good way of striking a balance is to look into homes with spacious backyards or front yards.

During your house hunt, make sure you’re comparing square footage and floor plans to ensure you’re picking the right home.

2. Schools

Ideally, you want a place with a great public school system or convenient proximity to an independent school. You’ll want to consider factors like commute to school from home and the office . If you’re thinking long-term, don’t forget to look at the nearby high schools and even colleges. Lucky for you, our Fielding neighborhood at Wallis Ranch takes education into account with a variety of great schools for growing minds.

Not sure if the schools are up to your standards? There are online services such as the Fraser Institute that offer ‘school report cards’ that can help tremendously in your future home decision.

3. Safety

Safety is paramount for parents with young children. You can check out crime statistics online, but the best way to get a feel for the area is to walk or drive around the prospective neighborhood at different times of day and night, and even on weekends. Don’t forget to ask neighbors and local businesses to share their opinions as well.

When it comes to the actual house, keep an eye out for safety risks such as steep staircases, unfenced pools and high patios without railings.

4. Community Perks

While researching your future home, don’t forget to look up child-friendly activities in the area. Is there a local playground with equipment appropriate for a variety of ages? Are there galleries and zoos offering free admission to children? Do you like the local day care centers? Do other families in the neighborhood have children for your kids to play with?

These are important questions that our upcoming neighborhood, Fielding at Wallis Ranch, can help you answer. We’ve created a neighborhood that’s designed to make your child’s transition to a new home easier and your weekends a breeze.

5. Child-Friendly Houses

There’s a lot you can do to easily and cost-efficiently make a house child-friendly. These range from covering sharp table corners to setting up safety gates for toddlers. However, you can make your job easier by choosing a family-friendly house layout.

For very young children, a one-floor home with a closed floor plan will make it easy to keep them in one or two safe areas. For older kids, an open floor plan lets you supervise them while you tend to the house. Large families, or those that include teenagers, may appreciate the extra space in a two-floor model with a bonus room over the garage.

There are many aspects to consider when buying a new home for your new family. The most important thing to remember is that as your family grows, their needs will as well. Taking a proactive step and accounting for those changes now is sure to help you out in the future.

May 01

Builder Magazine: Trumark Named to Prestigious Builder 100 List

With a strong background in entitlements, Trumark makes a competitive play for unique land deals.