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May 25

Six Ways to Make Memorial Day Memorable

Memorial Day is a time for reflection and observance. It’s a time when we can come together with our friends and family to enjoy the freedom our service men and women have fought so hard to give our country. As this traditional welcome-to-summer weekend is upon us again, we hope you find a few ways to enjoy existing friendships and make a few new ones.

Here are a few things you can do to make this Memorial Day happy and healthy:

  1. Partake in a Parade.Virtually every city hosts a Memorial Day parade. Find the one nearest you, and grab a front-row seat on the sidewalk. This is a great way to honor America’s veterans and give thanks for everything they’ve given us.
  2. Host a Cookout Competition.Everybody loves a little friendly competition, especially when food is involved. Challenge your friends to a backyard cook-off, and may the best win! Pair couples against couples, men against women, odd-numbered-addresses against even-numbered-addresses, and watch the craziness ensue. Top this title-winning event off with an unforgettable gift like a smirk-inciting apron.
  3. Keep the Critters out of Cocktails.With the summer heat, you’re bound to run into a few unwanted bugs during your Memorial Day endeavors. For critter-free cocktails, simply slip a cupcake wrapper over each glass, and secure it with a rubber band. Poke a straw through the middle, and presto! You’ve bug-proofed your beverage.
  4. Slather on Sunscreen.Although Memorial Day is still a May day, which can be cloudy and overcast at times, the sun’s rays are well within your skin’s reach. Despite what some people think, UV rays easily penetrate cloud covering, making your delicate skin susceptible to damage on even the dreariest of days if you’re not covered with sunscreen. Apply sunscreen to your face and body before you leave the house, and keep a bottle nearby for re-applications throughout the day.
  5. Bring a Charger.Between texts and music, your phone will have one of the liveliest days of its life. Keep a charger on you so you can play DJ when the party dies down or hail a Lyft when it’s time to go home.
  6. Have a Picnic at the Beach. Head to the beach with a few lawn chairs in tow, a cooler filled with your favorite snacks and all the warm weather essentials. Play a game of beach volleyball on the sand or Frisbee. Whether you hangout on a grassy knoll looking out onto the beach below or on the sand itself, there’s plenty of opportunity to breathe in a preview of summer this Memorial Day.

How do you plan to celebrate Memorial Day? We’d love to hear your tips, tricks, and plans on our social media sites!

May 17

Add Life to Home Decor with Mood-Enhancing Flowers

Add a personal and mood-enhancing touch to your home décor with the natural beauty of flowers. Whether you have consciously or unconsciously developed your home décor to express feelings such as peace, serenity, passion, excitement or others, flowering plants add a splash of color that helps bring rooms to life. Here are a few ideas about how to naturally accent your home.

Fun, Vibrant Kitchens

Kitchens tend to be the place where most everyday life occurs. Whether it’s sipping your morning coffee, cooking family dinners, chatting over afternoon snacks or sharing the day’s events, we spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Explore your creative side in ways that reflect the room. For example, a bouquet of short-cut Black Eyed Susans in mason jars with water can brighten up a window sill. Line the bottom of the jar with smooth stones or seashells and add a ribbon to pull the display together.

The kitchen is a wonderful place to strategically recommission household items. Take a colorful kettle or red and yellow tomato can or other common kitchen items and use them as interesting bases. One the more fun and vibrant indoor plant families to explore are Gerber Daisies. They have a wide range of bursting colors from pinks to oranges to reds and purples. Gerber Daisies are extremely playful to the eye and uplifting to the spirit.

Serene Living Rooms

Living rooms tend to be less bustling and more relaxing spaces. The décor often reflects this ambiance with off-whites and neutral color schemes, but a splash of greenery won’t derail your meditative feeling. In fact, low light leafy plants are a subtle way to incorporate life. A Philodendron Hederaceum in a nondescript planter makes sense. Although they’re often used as hanging plants, they work well in a less prominent fashion on a corner table. Pothos, or Epipremnun Aureum, is like an indoor Hosta with chartreuse leaves while the yellow accents add color and height. The decision really depends on the mood you are trying to set in the room. But when it comes to living rooms, maintaining relaxing plant décor should entail backing off on bright colors and using neutral pots and planters.

When making decisions about how to decorate your home with flowers, think about how you want each room to feel. Bright colors excite the eye and deep greens calm. Don’t hesitate to use everyday items for displays or planters. But be careful not to allow the base to overpower the plant itself. Developing your flower décor is an ongoing exploration and change is as natural as the seasons. Get some ideas from Pinterest and give it a try.

May 11

Best Ways to Create an Accent Wall

We’ve all heard the saying “less is more.”  That’s up for debate on quite a few levels, but it does happen to be true when it comes to accent walls in your home. Sometimes that small splash of color is all it takes to give depth and energy to a room, while also providing a perfect palette for creative expression. From paint to wallpaper, decals and wall art, there are plenty of ways to express yourself through dedicated accent walls in every room. Here are a few tips to get you started.

Paint Makes it Pop

Paint is by far the quickest and easiest way to make instant improvements to walls throughout your home. The key is finding the perfect color blend that complements existing walls, furniture and decor  – rather than clashing with them.  A fairly safe way to go is choosing a shade of color that’s just slightly darker or lighter than other walls in the room. This adds depth while maintaining a tranquil continuity. However, life isn’t always about guarding the status quo. If you need a little pizzazz in your life, go bold! Take your own personality into account when choosing whether “bold” means warm yellows, oranges and burgundies, or cool shades such as blues, greens and purples. You can also opt for zingy splashes of contemporary cherry red, electric lemon yellow or sassy spring green for your accent walls. Take an assessment of your personal style as reflected in furniture, lamps and pillows, and then decide how to maximize that with your accent color choice. Remember that paint is the ultimate “do-over,” so don’t be afraid to experiment. You can even use textured paint to create interesting patterns, or brush a section of the wall with chalkboard paint to create temporary murals.

Wallpaper: The Comeback Queen

Like all good things in life, the cycle of wall decor has come full circle, bringing back the old-fashioned art of decorating with wallpaper. A wallpapered accent wall is the perfect place to flirt with styles without a full commitment. Choose to go vintage 60s, fabulous art deco pastels, or even bring nature inside with peaceful landscape-themed papers. If you need to tone it down a bit, add solid-colored drapes, lampshades or throw blankets nearby to even things out.  If you just can’t bring yourself to go the “paste and paper” route, consider using wall decals. They can be as simple as pale blue raindrops in a random pattern, or continuous, repeating geometric shapes.

Accent Wall Decor

When choosing which wall to accent, look at inherent features such as unique windows, portholes or fireplaces. These can be natural accessories that are highlighted by your paint or wallpaper. Alternatively, choose large paintings or a gallery of smaller photographs that come alive on the colorful canvas background you’ve given them. Wall sconces, shelves, mirrors and lights enhance the cozy cubbyhole created by your personalized new accent wall.

May 05

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo at Home

It’s a great time of year when Cinco de Mayo comes around. It’s a time full of food, fun, tradition and celebration. Cinco de Mayo commemorates May 5, 1862, which is the day of Mexico’s victory over France during the Franco-Mexican War. Regardless of where you live, or how you choose to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, it’s a great opportunity to spend some quality time with your family and friends.

First, you can get started on your party planning with free online invitations. Choose your favorite one, send out the details and prepare for some fun.

Once you have that locked down, set the scene for your guests. Colorful table settings are a great way to brighten up the room and your guests are sure to take notice. Try a red, white and green color scheme to go with the theme.

Get the kids involved in a pre-party activity like some fun arts and crafts that will add to the home décor. For example, these DIY Fiesta flowers can turn your walls into a colorful backdrop. You can even consider hanging them from the ceiling or using them as a bold centerpiece.

Try something new this Cinco de Mayo. The ever-popular guacamole and salsa combination is a sure crowd pleaser, but why not tempt your guests to explore new possibilities? Entice them with something out of the ordinary like strawberry or mango salsa.  And for a fun adult beverage that fits the theme, try a beer margarita.

Once your friends and family are gathered in your colorfully decorated home, create a Cinco de Mayo themed meal to share together. Mexican food is definitely worth celebrating and there is no better time, than Cinco De May, to expand out of your typical taco truck state of mind. These recipes are sure to impress.

If you have never celebrated Cinco de Mayo at home with your family you are missing out. There are many fun and exciting ways to celebrate you will probably find yourself having to pick and choose a few of them so you can fit them into one day. Or, you could just make a week of it. But whatever you do, make sure you have fun while spending some quality time with your family!

Happy Cinco de Mayo!  Tag us on Instagram and show us your #CincoDeMayo celebrations.