The holidays are a special time of year when joy and laughter fill the air. We decorate the house with festive ornaments, string lights along the rooftop, shop for holiday gifts, and celebrate the season with family and friends who come to visit.
Whether your holiday guests are visiting overnight or staying for a few days, they need a cozy place to relax and sleep. Hosting guests requires some preparation, but you don't need to stress. With a little effort, you can make your guests feel comfortable and welcome for the holidays.
Create a Warm Welcome
Welcome your guests to your home with a festive entry that showcases the holiday season. Starting outdoors, adorn the trees and shrubs with holiday twinkle lights, line the front walkway with poinsettias, hang a seasonal wreath on the front door, and greet your guests with a cup of hot chocolate. As guests step into your home, welcome them with scented holiday candles, a roaring fire in the fireplace, freshly-baked muffins, and a beautiful holiday tree filled with ornaments, tinsel, and wrapped gifts.
Stock the Kitchen
When you're hosting overnight guests, make sure you stock the kitchen with extra food and beverages. A self-service style layout will keep you from playing short-order cook, especially when guests are staying for several days. Set up an area in the kitchen for a coffee bar with mugs, spoons, and sweeteners. Provide a convenient countertop area for making toast, sandwiches, salads, and plate lunches. For late-night snacks, fill a big basket with fresh fruits, snacks, and sweets so guests can munch at their leisure.
Prepare the Guest Bedroom
A beautiful, inviting guest room is a sure way to make your holiday guests feel welcome. First, create a comfortable, cozy bed with fresh linens, puffy pillows, and warm blankets or quilts. As a welcoming gesture, leave some mints or chocolates on the pillows and a good book on the nightstand. Next, make room for your guests' personal belongings:
If your guests are staying for a while, make sure they have easy access to wall plugs and consider sharing your wi-fi password. To create more restful sleep, put a sound machine, a small fan, or a humidifier in the room. If there's no TV in the guest room, leave some magazines, a pack of playing cards, or a puzzle on the dresser. In case of an emergency, make sure there's a flashlight near the bed.
Prepare the Guest Bathroom
Whether your guest bathroom is directly off the bedroom or down the hall, make sure your guests have everything they need. Before you start gathering essentials, clean the bathroom spic and span, clear out non-essentials, fill the room with fresh scents, and put down non-slip rugs. Once the bathroom is sparkling, you can put out guest essentials:
Some people travel with their own beauty essentials, so put a decorative basket on the sink or vanity where they can conveniently store them during their visit. For fresh scents and a relaxing atmosphere, place a few holiday candles on the tub or the vanity.
Above all, remember it's the personal attention you show to your guests that really matters, so welcome them to a comfortable holiday home filled with warmth, laughter, and lasting memories.
5 Holiday Decorating Tips for Small Spaces
Are you in the process of getting your decorations up and realizing you're running out of room? Maybe you are starting to outgrow your current home? Today, we are sharing 5 decorating tips for small spaces.
Keep It Simple
A Christmas tree is a must but opt for something smaller that won't take up a ton of space. When it comes to your Christmas decor theme, use lots of neutrals. Winter White looks so pretty againt a tree and won't overwhelm small spaces.
Candles are your best friend when it comes to making smaller spaces festive and cozy. You might not have tons of extra space for strands of garlands and lights without feeling overwhelming, but candles can be added to decorative trays, countertops and your mantle, if you have one.
Swap out linens and blankers with cozy, chunky textures. Think chuny knut blankets, sheepskin rugs and comfy pillows. If you don't want to totally replace what you have then bring on the layers! Festive flannel sheets are a fun way to add decor to your bedroom without taking up any additional space.
Festive Framed Artwork
One of the easiest ways to add holiday cheer to your home is to swap out current framed photos or art with fun Christmas prints. You can even print your own Christmas quotes in pretty font and frame them for the season.
Bring The Outdoors In
Evergreen clippings, berries and birch logs for the win! You can add berries to a pretty vase, and use evergreen clippings to accent the fireplace, kitchen table, a mirror - really anywhere! Lean birch logs against a corner wall or throw into a woven basket for some easy decor.
What do you think of these simple holiday decor ideas? What is your favorite way to make your home festive for the holidays?
Everything from security cameras and thermostats to light bulbs and locks is now available with wireless connectivity, and when multiple devices communicate, they join an "Internet of things" that instantly makes life more convenient and customizable. Some even learn your preferences and household habits, then adjust themselves accordingly. However, some homeowners still assume that "smart home" technology is still out of their price range.
If you want to smarten up your home and take advantage of the latest gadgets, you don't actually have to invest in a six-figure rewiring job. Instead, just take some of the following steps to keep your home compatible with the 21st century.
How will you turn your house into a smart home? Investing in a few wireless gadgets now may save time, money, and energy for years to come, but let's be honest: it makes your house look a whole lot cooler, too. Whether you hope to attract buyers soon or you want to make life in your new home more convenient and futuristic, these smart products are a great place to start.
Meet Your Neighbors with these Three Party Ideas
If your strategy for meeting the neighbors is a quick hello while walking the dog or picking up your mail, you need a better approach. Here are three ideas for neighborhood get-togethers that are easy to organize, inexpensive and a lot of fun.
Since you already share a neighborhood, you may as well find out what else you have in common. This spring, assemble the troops and plan some creative festivities to mix and mingle.
What's one of the fastest and easiest ways to update a room? You guessed it – window treatments. Gone are the days of heavy, dark, drab curtains. Instead, you can refresh just about any space with a variety of modern options to fit every style and budget.
Whether you're creating a home office space, looking to be more eco-friendly or moving into a new home and want to add your own personal touches, window treatments can make all the difference.
If energy efficiency is on your list, you have many options to choose from. High-tech cellular shades offer temperature control capabilities in a variety of innovative designs. Roller shades have a modern, minimal look and provide UV ray protection while allowing ample natural light in. Blinds have also come a long way, now designed with modern patterns, textures and materials to enhance any space.
Bring on the Drama
If you're ready to breathe new life into a room and add a little drama, consider luxurious curtains. Depending on how much light you want, a sophisticated, patterned drape can set the mood and make a bold statement.
By introducing a pop of color, like a bold orange or deep red, you can give your space a dramatic new look. Not into vibrant tones? White window treatments can be just as impactful. Layer white shades with a gauzy curtain to create a romantic and whimsical feel. You could also inject a little boho chic into a room by pairing classic woven or bamboo shades with patterned drapery. Whatever you choose, curtains can easily give your home a whole new look in a matter of minutes.
Who would've thought that you'd be able to open and close your curtains with the touch of a button? Say hello to smart windows, which let you control your blinds, curtains or shades through either a remote control or handy app. You can easily set up a schedule or use the setting to adjust your window treatments without even having to leave your comfy couch.
Giving your interiors a fresh new look is easier than ever by simply by changing out your window treatments. Whether you're creating a space that's soft and serene or bright and bold, these ideas should help set you off on the right path.
There are plenty of home improvement projects that will add value to your home if you're selling and add comfort to your home if you're staying put. One of these home improvement projects is clearing out pet odors from your house. Lingering smells from dogs are particularly unpleasant — and worst of all, you may have become so desensitized to them that you can't sense them at all! Regardless if you're planning to sell or planning to entertain guests, here are a few easy home improvement tips for removing dog odors from your home.
Your home doesn't have to smell like you own a dog! Clean your home and four-legged friend consistently to eliminate strong odors from your house.
First impressions are everything when it comes to selling your house. When a potential home buyer drives by your home, what will they see? The outside of your home should serve as a preview for the inside of your home.
"WOW" home buyers from the curb with these tips perfect for the fall.
5 Simple Ideas for Fall Home Makeovers
Whether your fall interior design aesthetic is spooky, sophisticated or somewhere in between, it's the ideal moment to implement some fresh ideas to spectacularly enjoy the season. If you're ready to deck out your home for fall, here are five easy, creative ways to infuse fall colors and textures into your décor:
Add Seasonal Wreaths
Not only do fall wreaths add beauty to your front door, they can also add a touch of the season inside your home. Try a playful twist on the traditional fall palette with unique "statement" fall wreaths, which are a must-have this fall. For the crafty, DIY wreaths are a whimsical way to add some vibrancy to your usual autumn décor. Remember, wreaths are versatile! Display a colorful wreath as a table centerpiece or hang it from a pretty ribbon to enjoy it from a different perspective.
Switch out summer pillows in lightweight fabrics in your family or living rooms for luxe, velvet ones in rich, fall shades. Think burgundy, cinnamon or caramel velvets and warm brown brocades, or classic fall colors in strong hues like burnt orange or exotic chinoiserie red.
Swap Out Rugs
Change area rugs throughout your home, replacing lightweight summer jute rugs with thick, plush rugs in rustic, autumn colors to make rooms look and feel warmer.
Create a beautiful fall table with distressed and repurposed containers filled with your favorite fall lowers and dark-hued berries. Or make a cornucopia of fall colors by arranging autumn blooms on a chic serving tray. Mimic nature's fall transformation by introducing dried floral arrangements into your home – adding a rustic vibe to match the season. Add some beautiful fall-colored flowers, like mums or cockscombs, to your front porch or patio.
Cozy Up Outdoors
Make the most of fall's cooler evenings by creating a small conversation area around a firepit on the deck or in the backyard. Bring out a few pillows and autumn-inspired throws for the chairs and keep a large basket nearby so you can easily bring the linens indoors if inclement weather threatens.
These are just a few of the many ways to fill your home with autumn beauty without overhauling your holiday décor stash.
Of course, you probably already know that, but what you might not know is that upgrading your property doesn't have to be expensive or time-consuming. The right DIY home improvement projects improve your home, add value, and bring buyers to your door.
With these fixes, buyers will be flocking to your property and making top offers. And remember, it's not always the costly changes that give the best ROI, so consult your real estate agent about which home improvement changes will be better suited for your home.
Whether you're new to homeowning or have been a homeowner for a while, improving the security of your home is a good idea. It can provide peace of mind and help you keep your property secure while you're away. These 5 tips will help you know where to start.
Improving your home's security isn't difficult. With these tips, a little work can go a long way to giving you the peace of mind that your home is safe.