4 December 2019

How To Host a Successful Holiday Cocktail Party

The holiday season is here and if images of cocktail parties are dancing in your head, it's time to create a party plan. If you use the right formula, the party can flow together easily and be a complete success. Here are a few tips on how to host a successful holiday cocktail party.

1. Plans
Before you do anything else, jot down a list of all the items, decorations, and people you want to include in your party. Whether it is an intimate gathering of 100 people or a massive gala event with 250 friends, the steps are the same. Before you know where you want to party to go, you have to know what limits you are setting. Is there a theme? What about attire? Will you have a hostess at a hostess stand to welcome everyone? Are the guests bringing alcohol to share with others? Will there be music, and where are you holding the event? These are only a few of the hundreds of questions you need to ask yourself before you can even set up the invitations.

2. Invitations
The invitations should include more than just the date and time of the party. Request that attendees RSVP by a certain date. You can include other special information on the invitation as well, such as parking, expected dress, and what to bring (if anything).

 
3. Caterers
Go with a catering group you know and trust to make your party a success. Meet with the party organizer at least a month before the event to ensure everything is on track. Provide a list of finger foods, a design of the cocktail tables around the room, and where the hostess stand and party greeter will be located.



4. Cocktails 
As the star of the party, you may want your hostess to hand each person a drink as they arrive. Having a table filled with three types of beverages can help your guests feel at home right away as each selects the perfect cocktail the moment they arrive. If you want your guests to mingle, include several small tables around the room with one or two different types of drinks at each table.

Add some finger foods, music, and decorations, and you have the perfect formula for any holiday cocktail party. Don’t forget to add chairs, tables, and glitter to highlight the holidays.


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26 November 2019

4 Romantic Date Night Ideas for Winter

As the year shifts towards its colder months, coming up with interesting ideas for date nights can become more difficult. There are plenty of fun and romantic activities you can engage in with your partner even with chilly weather abound. To get some inspiration for what you should do on your next date night, take a glance at the ideas listed in this article.

Plan a Board Game Night
When you’re in the mood for something warm and cozy, consider scheduling a board game night with your partner. There are plenty of board games that offer a 2-player experience for a more intimate date night in addition to those who cater to larger groups of players. You can aim for popular classics or embrace a more intense experience, such as a strategy game like the Rise of Tribes board game. To mix things up, look into local board game cafes that offer a wide array of games you can choose from alongside food, drink and company. You can also form your own collection of board games at home so you can host game nights with your partner and friends.

Participate in an Epic Snowball Fight
Take advantage of the season and challenge your partner to all-out snowball war. You can employ a run and shoot strategy and fire snowballs on the go while taking cover behind various trees or invest in building individual forts for protection. To take things up a notch, consider squaring off against another couple you are both friends with before ending the night with hot chocolate and coffee in front of the fire to help everyone thaw out.

Tour Nearby Holiday Lights
Hop into your car and take your partner on a tour of nearby holiday light displays. Some areas may offer a drive-through holiday light experience for a fee. There also may be nearby neighborhoods with homeowners who pride themselves on extravagant light displays when gearing up for the season. Do a quick search online to find areas that may be of interest before hitting the road. Make sure you bring hot chocolate, coffee or tea in a thermos to complete the experience.

Throw a Cozy Movie Marathon
Settle in for a warm night inside and gather a collection of movies that you can watch with your partner. There are holiday movies you can watch that will get you two in the spirit of the season. You can also select movies that are based in snowy environments to embrace the weather outside. For those who are missing summer, consider gathering a collection of beach-friendly movies that will keep the spirit of hotter seasons alive. To complete the night, make sure you have plenty of movie theater-friendly snacks such as popcorn, candy and pretzels. Go out of your way to offer a wide selection of drinks as well.

There are plenty of opportunities for love even during the colder months. By using the suggestions listed above, you can take advantage of the cold weather and enjoy a fun and romantic date with your partner.


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How to Plan for a Natural Disaster

Natural disasters such as hurricanes and tornadoes hit the news with what seems like increasing regularity. Being prepared for one to strike is now a necessity for most homeowners. Use these tips to keep your home ready for when disaster strikes.

Generator
Using a generator like Generac Generator allows your home to have power for essential functions when the power goes out. A serious rainstorm can knock down a light pole knocking the power out for an entire area. Tornadoes and high winds can pick up telephone poles like matchsticks rendering people without power for days. Whatever reason you are without power, keep your food cold with a generator.

Plan 
Make sure your family has a plan in place for any natural disaster. Whether that is a fire or a hurricane, make sure you know where to go and who to call. Even young kids should be apprised of the family plan once a month. This keeps everyone on the same page and not panicking should the time come to put the plan in action.

Electronics
To avoid electrical shock and damage to your expensive electronics, unplug them when a flood is imminent. Then move anything you can up to a higher location to keep them out of the incoming water. This may not always be a possibility for some homeowners, but the more you can move, the less you may need to replace later.

Phone
Many people rely on their smart phones as their main method of communication. Make sure you charge it fully before the storm or other disaster strikes. Then avoid using any apps while the disaster happens and afterwards if you have no power. In fact, to save the battery, you should close out any unnecessary apps. Text and phone should be the only things you use.

Memories
While many people rely on the cloud for their storage, others still keep everything on a hard drive. When you know a disaster is imminent, back up your pictures and important documents to a flash drive and to a cloud service. Take out any camera memory cards and secure them in a safe place. You can even mail certain items like memory cards and flash drives to a trusted family or friend not in the disaster area to hold onto them for you.

Batteries
 Make sure you have batteries on hand for flashlights and a small radio. The radio can help you stay in touch with what is going on in the outside world. Flashlights and candles can help you see while the lights are off.


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19 November 2019

Fire Safety 101: How to Avoid the Top Causes of Home Fires

A home fire is a devastating emergency that can quickly reduce all of your possession to ashes along with your home. Fire safety should be a priority for everyone, whether you rent or own, in order to avoid the loss of property and potentially lives in the event of a fire. In order to protect your home from fires, it helps to know the most common causes of fires and how to reduce the risk of each.

5. Candles
Using candles around your home is a lovely way to create ambiance. Whether you're using candles for the calming feeling their gentle glow provides, the pleasant smells of a scented candle or for the romantic ties to a candle on a table set for two, they are useful and enjoyable additions to your home decor. When left burning without proper observation or in unsafe spaces, however, they are a hazard. You should never light your candles around other flammable items, and should always blow them out when leaving the room.

4. Electrical Problems
One of the biggest unseen risks in a home is electrical wiring problems. While some electrical fires come about as a result of the negligent behavior of the homeowners, such as overloading a socket and triggering a shirt and fire, others come down to errors in the installation of the home's wiring or unseen damage like animals chewing on wires in the walls. You should always leave all home wiring to professionals, and if you see an outlet or other electrical fixture which is behaving oddly or sparking, turn off the breaker to it and call an electrician to check it out.

3. Smoking in the Home
While the longterm health risks associated with smoking are now well known, that is not the only concern you should have if you or someone in your home is a smoker, as cigarettes are actually a leading cause of home fires. You should never smoke in bed or when you are tired as there is a risk of falling asleep with a lit butt, causing it to drop and start a fire. Similarly, it is important to ensure that all cigarettes are fully extinguished when you finish smoking to prevent any accidental fires.

2. Home Heating Systems
A home heating system is a must-have to keep your home warm and safe in the winter, but it's important that you take care of your system to avoid housefires. Overtaxed units and unclean units present a fire hazard, which is why it is important to keep your vents and ducts clean. You should also schedule regular maintenance for your heating equipment to have a professional out to your house to ensure that everything is operating as it should be to minimize the risk of a home fire.

1. Cooking Mishaps
The kitchen is the number one source of home fires. While you can't beat a delicious home-cooked meal, if you aren't careful you can come to regret it. Always be sure that anything flammable is safely away from any hot surfaces, and turn off all ovens and burners when you are done cooking to avoid a fire starting when they are left unattended.


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14 November 2019

What Car Features Are Important for Your Teen

If you’re thinking about buying your teen their first car, or they’ve asked you for some suggestions on how to narrow down their selection, what is best to recommend?

In this article, we provide a few car features that we feel are useful and often very important for a teen driver with limited experience on the road.

Blind Spot Monitoring 
All cars have blind spots unfortunately, and this is something young drivers will be very much aware of, having been constantly reminded about them in their Driver’s Ed class. However, when they finally pass their test and feel the freedom of getting out into the open road, it can be easy to forget to check. Thankfully, there are now cars that include blind spot monitoring as standard, which means a warning light will show on the wing mirror when you signal to change lanes and a car is about to pass you. Using this type of tool allows your teen to be less anxious when driving, which means they can focus properly.

Fuel Efficiency
The fuel efficiency of a vehicle affects how much it costs to drive around campus if they’re still in college or when getting to and from their job.

Many teens are environmentally conscious too, so if the vehicle isn’t a hybrid or an electric car, then at least prioritize better fuel efficiency to use less fossil fuels for the same mileage. That’s still better for the environment but it also is less expensive too.

Auto Loans and the Buying Decision
The cost of motoring gets far more expensive when starting out in new automobiles and believing that’s the only way. This gets exacerbated when taking out an auto loan that increases the cost of the vehicle purchase. It’s very easy to get trapped in a cycle of repeatedly using pricey auto loans to afford better cars or SUVs, instead of saving up for the replacement cost while owning the existing vehicle.

Discuss this with your teen. Help them to understand that buying a second-hand vehicle or saving up to buy a new car with cash is preferable over purchasing a more expensive vehicle on credit. This discussion then factors into what car they should get this time around, the features available, and those to accept won’t be included.

Interior Lights and Exterior Headlights
Older vehicles have headlamps that aren’t as modern as the latest vehicles with super bright LED headlights. It’s clear that for teen drivers who need to see everything on the road, great illumination at night is useful for their confidence. This avoids them subsequently deciding to avoid night driving which sadly can be the result.

On the interior, some teens tend to be messy and disorganized, especially inside their cars! So, it helps to have bright interior lighting, so they can turn it on to hunt around for what they’ve temporarily lost. It can be a real lifesaver.

Vehicle to Match Their Driving Experience
When your teen has only ever driven a smaller vehicle, advise them to purchase something that’s a similar size. This avoids being a fish out of water trying to handle a much larger automobile on the road.

It’s also useful with parking maneuvers too, because trying to get a bigger vehicle into a smaller parking spot is far more difficult. Make life easier; don’t get something oversized.

There are different things to consider when thinking about a teen and their car. They’re not always obvious because older, more experienced drivers have moved past these types of issues, but we’ve all got to start somewhere.


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27 October 2019

How to Shop for Fashion without Feeling Guilty

Shopping for fashion pieces to fill your closet with, such as new tops or a pair of jeans, is always a bit of a balancing act. You want to look fresh and stylish in different occasions, but you don’t want to end up spending too much on fashion. You also have the size of your closet to think about; you wouldn’t want a closet full of clothes that you never wear, would you?

If you feel guilty every time you buy new clothes or splurge on something new, you are not alone. A lot of women – especially moms – feel the same way. Fortunately, shopping for fashion pieces doesn’t have to be that difficult. With the tips and tricks that we are about to discuss in this article, you can shop for fashion without feeling guilty afterwards.

Know What You Have 
Before buying new clothes and accessories, make sure you take a quick look at your closet. Knowing what you already have is helpful. It allows you to search for new pieces that can be mixed and matched with older items in your closet to create different looks.

Knowing what you already have also helps when you are trying to avoid buying fashion pieces that you know you will never wear. A chic cashmere sweater may seem like a good idea, but you should not pick one up if you have other cashmere sweaters that you are yet to wear.

Don’t Pay the Full Price 
There is always a discount to use. The fashion industry is more competitive than ever, so it is not surprising to find brands and retailers offering bigger, more appealing discounts to attract customers. Thanks to the internet, you can compare discounts and deals easily.

Take the time to find special discounts, coupons that you can use, and other deals for the pieces you want to get. The more you search, the more discounts you will come across, and the more you can save on new clothes. Speaking about saving….

Save and Splurge 
Going for cheaper fashion pieces isn’t always the way to go. There are times when spending more to get high quality items that last longer – and that can be worn in different situations – is what you want to do instead. Value should be the main aspect you consider when making purchase decisions.

For example, a little black dress that is more expensive is considered an investment worth making. The dress can be worn with different accessories to create different looks. A little black dress is also versatile, meaning you can wear it with jackets for semi-formal occasions too.

Browse Online 
Going on an online window-shopping spree is a must. Every fashion brand has an online catalog that you can browse through. The catalog for Jovani evening dresses collection is a good example. Jovani have been making gorgeous dresses for years, and they have an extensive catalog indeed. By browsing through the catalog for Jovani dresses online, you know your options and can narrow down your search before visiting retailers. You save both time and money, and still end up with the best dress (or other fashion pieces) to buy at the end of the process.

Shop Online 
Yes, you can also choose to buy the fashion pieces you want online. Before you do, however, there are a few things you need to know - starting with your measurements. Check the measurement guideline for each brand too, as brands often use different standards.

Before hitting the Checkout button, you also want to make sure that you can return the pieces if they don’t fit or don’t meet your expectations. Understand the returns policy of online retailers and brands to protect your fashion investment.

Avoid Trends 
Trendy items are always the most exciting. After all, they are hot for the season, and everyone is buying them. Still, trendy items aren’t always the best fashion pieces to buy. Items that go out of style once the season is over are bad investments.

Even if you want to follow certain trends, make sure the pieces you buy can also be used to create different looks. Rather than buying into every trend and ending up spending more money, be smart with your choices and limit trendy items.

Get Rid of Your Old Clothes First 
One last tip to keep in mind if you want to do some fashion shopping is to also take out some pieces from your closet. If you buy 2 new shirts, consider taking out 2 old ones that you no longer wear. This is how you stay organized. You will not end up with a closet full of items you cannot wear.

Taking stuff out is a healthy exercise. That brings us to the first tip we reviewed in this article: check your closet before shopping. It is not difficult to integrate these tips – and the others we covered in this article – to stay completely guilt-free and beautifully chic for different occasions.


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25 October 2019

Why You Should Consider Custom Furniture

Moving into a new home or redesigning the one you already live in is exciting. Furniture shopping often is not. Between trying to find something that the entire family finds comfortable, searching for a color that fits your interior decor, trying to stick to your budget, and so on, the process can take quite a while. Of course, if you want something perfect for your home's new look without needing to do all the legwork, you might consider custom furniture such as that available from Joybird Furniture.

It is More Afordable than You Realise 
Many people automatically take custom furniture off the table because they assume it costs too much. The reality is that even if the initial cost is higher, the furniture often lasts longer. Moreover, because you custom-designed it, you're less likely to get tired of it and want to buy new furniture a year later. Most of the time, custom furniture is also better made, so it won't wear out and need repairs as quickly as traditional furniture. Even better, many places that make and sell custom furniture also provide payment plans that are on par with the ones you'd receive from a regular furniture store.

It Offers Better Functionality
You only have so many options when you buy traditional furniture. The sizes, materials, and overall style are often standard and only come in neutral shades. When you buy custom furniture like the items available at Joybird, you get better functionality. Maybe you have a small living area and need something that is bigger than a loveseat but not quite as big as a regular sofa. Perhaps you have five dogs and need room for all of them plus your spouse and kids on the bed. You can create furniture that not only meets your size requirements but is available in materials and colors you love. It's about more than size, though. Whether you want a traditional sofa, a sectional, or something in-between, custom furniture allows you to adapt to other functionality issues as well. It can fit rooms with strange angles or low windows, be made for extra-tall people, and so on.

It Provides Your Home with Something Unique
You've seen the meme about the ugly couch that everybody owned in the 1970s and '80s. If you didn't grow up with that in your living room, you knew somebody who did. Custom furniture means your home won't become the butt of a meme in a few decades. You'll have a piece that is unique only to you and your home. Nobody else in the neighborhood will have it, which means it will be more impressive when you have family or friends over.

It Saves You Time
While it's true that you'll need to wait longer to have your new furniture if you custom build it, the wait will be well worth it. Even better, since you won't need to spend hours or even days going back and forth to local (or not so local) furniture stores, you'll be saving lots of time. Instead of furniture shopping, you can catch up on other chores, spend time with family, practice self-care, or just sleep in a little longer on the weekends.

It Lets You Get Creative
Furniture sets in brick-and-mortar stores are all one color, all one texture, and offer no insight into your personality most of the time. If you want your style to shine, custom furniture lets you do it. Choose a bright red, faux leather chair and match it with a royal blue or dandelion yellow sofa. Go bold, pastel, black, patterned, or nearly anything else you can imagine.The hardest part of getting custom furniture is deciding which colors work best in your rooms. Even so, choosing furniture while you're wearing pajamas at home is much more relaxing than rushing from store to store on your one day off this week!


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2 October 2019

How to Become a Movie Producer

Almost everyone dream of Hollywood at some point in their life. The draw of the brights lights, the glory of the red carpet, the satisfying notion of fame of fortune. Although most people might dream of becoming an actor or actress, others might aspire to produce films. They might look up to people like Heather Parry, George Lucas, or Walt Disney. With the correct mixture of education and experience, becoming a movie producer is well within reach.

Education

To begin a career in the film industry, it is typically required that a person have a bachelor's degree in film, acting, journalism, communications or another related field. The key is to focus on a program that gives you skills to film and edit a movie into a cohesive piece. Producers need to know how every facet of movie-making works, so students should not ignore any part of their education.

After earning a degree, you should look for an internship opportunity with a production company. This can give you exposure to their industry and how things work, as well as allowing you to meet professionals in the business. These networking opportunities can prove invaluable when you start to look for full-time work.

Experience


Just like any industry, experience in your desired role is imperative to securing a role as a movie producer. Typically people look for one to five years of experience for entry level jobs, so you should start working on your portfolio while you are still in school instead of relying on past class projects to carry you into a job.

Once a person has made it into the industry, they should always keep an eye on the latest trends and salaries. Staying informed about the next big movie can mean the difference between producing a box office hit and an Indie film flop.


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27 September 2019

The top 3 supplies that you will need for camping outdoors

If you enjoy camping, there are many supplies that you need. Having the proper gear that includes a ratchet belt, hiking boots, and other protective wear makes you have confidence so that you can fully enjoy your camping experience. It is good to have a camping checklist so that you do not leave some necessities behind. You need at least three essentials to ensure maximum comfort and fun while camping.

Here are the top 3 supplies that you will need for camping outdoors;



1. Cooking supplies 
Meals during camping should be simple. As much as possible, you should opt for a menu that does not involve much preparation. A cooling device, cooking stove, and some water are some of the basic things you will need. You may also carry some spices to ensure you enjoy good food too. Opt for lighter cooking pans and pots for ease of transport, and to minimize the luggage. You may opt for drinks and simple snacks. Find out if the campsite has grills and picnic table first. You will then decide on what you may require, and carry appropriate foodstuffs. You may also review a few camping recipes to prepare fast meals during camping.



2. Camping gear
As much as possible, you should pack minimal luggage. That is why you should opt for versatile camping gear and accessories. You should not carry so much clothing because, in some instances, you will walk for long distances carrying the luggage. Some of the items to include in your camping gear list include a ratchet belt, boots, and appropriate clothes that offer protection. A camping tent is also part of the gear that you should carry unless the site provides tents. Try the tent first before buying to be sure that they are of the right size. You can check on the quality of the material to ensure safety and protection in case of harsh weather. Do not forget other items for personal use including; toiletries and sunscreen. When you spend a lot of time outdoors, you should ensure that your skin has protection to prevent sunburns. You need to have appropriate sleeping bags to keep warm at night. You may also carry inflatable sleeping pads for more comfort.



3. Camping equipment and tools 
Some of the essential include lanterns and other sources of light. Though you can light fires at night, you still need lights in the tents, and sometimes for security purposes. You should also carry water treatment options and filtration systems. Ensure that you have enough water, but sometimes you may run out of water. It is good to have such water treatment in case of such eventualities. You should also have a first aid kit in case of emergencies. Having google maps and a spare battery in case you need to recharge the phones is advisable to ensure that you are in constant communication with your friends and family.

With these supplies, you will enjoy camping and have more fun. It is good to avoid distractions while camping. Some people prefer to switch off their phones and focus on outdoor fun and enjoy nature.


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4 September 2019

How To Keep Your Home Cool In The Summer

Summer is here and so is the warm weather which means only one thing – it is very hard to get a good night’s sleep. Of course, many people have air con but what if you want to save some money on your energy bills or your air con cuts out? There are plenty of ways to keep your home cool in the summer that are really easy to do so don’t worry about that.

Here, we are going to give you some of our best tips to help you keep your home cool. This will include everything from switching out your sheets to investing in a fan for your home. Keep reading to find out what these are.

Switch Your Sheets 
 If you are having trouble sleeping thanks to the warm weather, then it might be time to switch your sheets. We highly suggest that you stay away from satin and silk sheets as these can trap the heat and make it harder for you to nod off. The best kind of sheets for the summer are cotton and linen as these can make your bed much more breathable. Try to opt for lighter sheets and this will make a big difference in how cool your home is. Then, when winter comes along you can switch back to your silk sheets.

Invest In A Fan 
Do you have a fan in your home to circulate the air and cool it down? It might be time to invest in one as this can be a great solution to all of your summer issues. Of course, you need to make sure that you are choosing the right fan for the job and Lasko can help you with this thanks to all of their helpful guides. A fan can be more cost-effective than air con so make sure to consider this.

Close The Curtains 
Our next tip for those who want to keep their home cool in the summer is to keep the curtains closed. While you are at work, the sun will be shining through your windows and heating up your entire home waiting for your arrival. If you keep your curtains closed when you can, this will reduce the amount of warmth that is in there. This is a simple trick so make sure to check it out and see if it works for you. you won’t regret it when you come home to a much cooler home.

Hang A Wet Sheet 
This next idea might sound a little strange, but it can actually make a bit of a difference. All you need to do is hang a wet sheet in front of a window that is open in your home and you should find that it is much cooler overall. If you don’t believe us, make sure to give this a try next time you are trying to figure out how to keep your home cool in the summer.

Transform Your Water Bottle 
Another great way to keep your home cool in the summer is to transform your water bottle. While a hot water bottle is used for keeping you warmer, it can also work in the opposite way. Why don’t you fill it with cold water and stick it in the freezer? This will then turn it into an ice pack that shouldn’t leak, and you can keep it wherever you want. Whether you are sitting in your bedroom and need some coldness, or you are hard at work in your home office, this will make a huge difference.

Avoid Hot Showers 
Many people use a shower to cool down in the summer but if you are having warm showers then this is only going to make your home warmer over the course of the day. This is because of the steam that lingers after a warm shower so it is best if you can avoid taking any kind of warm shower if possible. Try to go for a tepid shower and this will reduce the steam and not have an impact on the heat in your home. If you can’t face a cold shower, then try to keep your warm showers shorter to have a similar impact.

Conclusion 
As you can see, there are plenty of ways that you can keep your home cooler in the summer. If you have some air con then you are already halfway there but otherwise, there are some viable options for you to try out. Consider investing in a fan for the room and close the curtains when you don’t need to have them open. These small changes will make a huge difference and you won’t have to deal with a stuffy home that is unpleasant to live in.


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