Keys to making your 4th of July party classy and sophisticated.

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I love 4th of July parties! Because they are the lick off to summer. There’s finally decent weather, everyone’s dying to break out the BBQ’s and out door games are being unpacked. Plus, I just love outdoor parties. There is just something so fun about entertaining outside.

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Are you looking to throw a classy 4th of July party for your family and friends this year? Try a few of these ideas to add some sophisticated red, white and blue flair to your event. These decorating ideas show your patriotic respect while still keeping your party feeling fancy and fun.

One of my biggest struggles with holiday parties is how easy it is for the decor to get too over the top or gaudy… there’s so many ideas for how to decorate for a back yard 4th of July BBQ. But most of them are overwhelming patriotic. And as I’m sure you’ve seen in the parties I’ve shared here so far, I like things to stay classy. So I figured I’d share with you a few ways I would decorate for a 4th of July party while still keeping it sophisticated. Enjoy my friends!

Keys to making your 4th of July party classy

  • Keep it simple- don’t add too much.
  • Add some formality – go for high quality products like paper plates and silverware.
  • Be intentional – make your guest feel special

Classy decorating ideas for your 4th of July party.

1 Hang some bunting

Bunting is an easy way to add stylish patriotic flair to your party. But be sure to use it sparingly. I’d stick to just one banner or flag to keep it from getting to be too much. Try a garland over a food table, a casual drap on your fence or a few large flags on your porch railing.

2. Use your food!

A fun way to add some red, white and blue colors to your food table is with the food its self! Come up with creative ways to display your snacks like a flag fruit tray, angel food cake skewers and chocolate dipped strawberries with colored sprinkles.

3. Add some throw pillows.

Throw pillows are seriously my favorite way to add a pop of something – whether that’s color or a theme – to a space. Get some patriotic throw pillows and place them throughout your entertaining area for some classy vibrant 4th of July flair!

4. Place a few flags.

Flags are obviously the key patriotic decorating element, but when used all over the place, they can become extremely busy. Don’t shy away from using a few. I’m mean not more than 5-6. Try staking some into the edge of your yard, placing a few in a glass vase or other decorative piece, or in your floral center piece.

5. Use your flowers

Fresh flowers are a one of my go-tos when it comes to decorating a party- especially one with a food table. If your going to be purchasing and putting out bouquets of flowers anyway, why not be purposeful with them. And make them an element of red, white and blue flair. Try red and white flowers in a blue vase, white flowers in a vase with colored ribbon, or simply red white and blue flowers in glass jars

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10 things to keep in your car for summer adventures.

After realizing things were getting pretty hectic around home. My wonderful man decided we would all load up in the Tahoe and take off for the day.

Part of his plan was stopping at a park for a picnic lunch. Which, bless his heart, he actually put together and packed it. Just so we could enjoy one of the first nice summer days.

After we ate, since it was getting hot, the kids decided to wade into the water a bit to cool off. But I soon realized they had waded up to they’re ankles in mud! And were trying to catch a frog!

THAT”S WHEN I REALIZED, SUMMER IS HERE, AND ITS TIME TO LOAD MY TRUCK WITH 10 THINGS FOR SUMMER ADVENTURES.

Hope you will enjoy with post!

  1. Sweatshirts- Here in Wisconsin, temps can drop once the sun goes over the horizon. So now our adventure does not have to end when the sun goes to bed.
  2. A change of clothes- Just because your kids may be out of diapers, does not mean you don’t need extras. I am accident prone myself. And you never know when that unexpected drip or splash may happen. Or one of your children goes swimming in their clothes. It could happen…
  3. Picnic supplies- I keep a bag with a plastic table cloth, plastic ware, napkins and paper plates. Just in case you decide to grab something to eat, and stay a while longer. You will not have to worry about getting bird poop on your food. Just saying
  4. Sunscreen – We do see the sun now and again here in Wisconsin. You never know when it will appear. So I carry some just in case.

5. Bug spray- The mosquitoes have been awful this year. Nothing like being out at a baseball game, and getting carried away by bugs!

6. Snacks- There is nothing worse than driving home from a fun activity, and finding your self hungry, or listening to the tune of IIIII”””””MMMMM HHHHUUUUNNNGGGRRRRRYYYYY!!!!!! Keep a box of granola bars, or other individually wrapped snacks handy to pass around.

7. Umbrella- When it rains, it pours! Nothing so miseralble as when it rains on your parade. Keep an umbrella handy, where its easy to grab, so you dont end up needing your extras as well!

8. A Sheet or blanket- I keep both. A sheet is great for unexpected stops at the beach. And the blanket is great for those roadside stops and fireworks, once the sun goes down.

9. Car activities- This depends on the age of your children. There are a ton of ideas on pintrest for this. I keep a couple note books, and boxes of pens, pencils, and markers. Because too many video games and movies, will rot the brain! Keep creativity alive.

10. Frisbee- Just for fun, and great for exercize at a rest stop in the midst of a long road trip. Just don’t toss in on the road, or at a near by person.

One other thing I like to keep with me is a first aid kit. This isn’t just for summer, although we tend to use it more in the summer. I keep one in the glove compartment, and now is a great time to check and restock if you already have one.

So, happy adventures to you. You have all the things you will ever need with you where ever you go.

Keeping up with the laundry. Its easier then you think!

I USED TO HATE DOING LAUNDRY.

Hated it so much that I would avoid it for as long as I could. When I did do laundry, it would be the bare minimum. After the clothes were washed and dried, (hopefully in the same day) they rarely made it into the drawers or closets. It would sit in piles or in baskets in each room.

I took it personally too. I thought to myself, “why can’t I get it together and just get it done.” What was holding me back?

But over the last few years. since committing myself to being a more organized person I have finally broken thru the obstacle and figured out that keeping up with the laundry isn’t really that big of a deal. In reality, its a really simple and surprisingly easy task. If your doing it right.

HERE ARE A FEW THINGS THAT HELPED ME GET MY LAUNDRY ACT TOGETHER

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1 Sort your clothes…or don’t

If you sort your laundry, get multiple hampers so you can sort as you go. I suggest four, one for cold water, warm water whites, warm water colors, and towels. This way, when you do laundry you just grab a basket and go.

But before I changed my game on laundry, it was my short cut to just wash it all in cold water. No sorting necessary. FYI – the laundry police have not showed up yet!

All laundry is safe in cold water. Its the warm water that makes things shrink or causes colors to run. Plus cold water is more energy efficient. Hello savings!!!

Yes, warm water is better on stains or really dirty clothes, but if your looking for a corner to cut, this one most likely wont cause you any trouble.

So, sort your clothes as you go… or don’t sort them at all. Either way, you’ve eased some of the pain of doing laundry. High five!

2 WASH AND DRY IN 2 MINUTES FLAT

The amount of time spent on this part of the process is incredibly small. It takes like 60 seconds, maybe, to turn on your washer and let it fill while you pour in detergent (and fabric softener) and add the clothes. It seriously is so easy.

Once you are done with that, then comes the hard part, for me…remembering to move it to the dryer. Figure out a way to remind yourself… leave the light on as a reminder, set a timer on your phone, or figure out when in your schedule you will come back and take less then 60 seconds to move clothes from the washer to the dryer. Just don’t forget!

So far, we have done 2 minutes of laundry. Why do we avoid this exactly?

3 FOLD< HANG< AND PUT AWAY FASTER!

Now this is the part I would dread about laundry. I would procrastinate this step for so long that my clothing situation was a night mare. Here is how I made it easier.

De wrinkle your clothes before you start.

Forget ironing. If your clothes have been sitting for a while after drying and gained a bunch of wrinkles, then toss them back into the dryer to get the wrinkles out. 5 minutes in there (on any setting that involves heat) goes a long way!

Take your clothes straight from the dryer to your closet.

Because I hate this part of laundry, when ever I do it I try to make it fun. By doing it while I watched tv. I love to multi task, si if I can watch a favorite show or you tube video I know it will be more enjoyable.

But… It took me a while to realize that this made the process take longer. It only takes 5 minutes to fold one load … not a whole episode! Also, if you do it in the living room, or even the laundry room, its a whole extra step to collect all the piles and carry them to the correct rooms. So cut out the middle man and fold or hang the laundry right by the closet or dresser it belongs in.

Stop sorting socks!

It takes so much time to match them up and secure them together. I’m usually about variety, but I’m happy to sacrifice unique socks to make life easier all my socks are the same, and they get stacked not bundled. I use a lingerie bag in the washer to keep all the socks together.

4 LESS CLOTHES = LESS LAUNDRY

If you’ve got a bad habit of waiting until you’re out of clothes to ware before doing laundry… then maybe its time to get rid of some clothes so you run out faster. I’m kidding – kind of lol!

If you have to many then you will end up with too much laundry to do. If you only have what you need, then your house wont be busting at the seams with piles of clean and dirty clothes.

Its just logical. If you can manage to go 3 weeks with out doing laundry, then don’t be surprised when you have 3 weeks of laundry to do at one time. If you limit the amount of clothes that you own, you also limit how far behind you get.

5. MORE LAUNDRY = LESS LAUNDRY

Say what?!?!

Forget “laundry day” Please don’t make your self spend hours doing laundry every other Saturday. Its the worst! Do some laundry every day.

Doing laundry more often will allow it to take less of a toll on your life. Find your rhythm, figure out how much needs to be done on a daily basis to stay on top of it.

I would rather spend 10 minutes a day keeping up with laundry then skip it all together and end up needing to spend hours on it. Laundry is a never ending chore. But it doesn’t have to be miserable. keep it simple, and keep it moving.

Spread the word!

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How to easily clean and maintain your vacuum cleaner.

A clean vacuum is an efficient vacuum! Here how to keep it in top condition.

With out maintenance a vacuum cleaner is only good for moving around dust and dirt. It is one of the most hard working pieces in the whole house. So don’t forget to give it some regular TLC to keep it in top condition.

All bunged up: The most common cause of loss of suction is blockages. This makes the machine slow to pick up, and quick to over heat. To keep this at a minimum, never reuse the bag, as this is often part of the filter system. If it gets clogged with dust it will reduce the efficiency of the machine.

With a bagless machine, empty the canister after each use. For bagged machines, replace the bag when it is 1/3 full. Yes, you read that right, just 1/3.

To unblock a vacuum cleaner always switch it off and unplug as well as pulling out any blockages in the tube. Undo the hose and check the entrance to the top of the bag for further debris.

TIP If the blockage is unmoveable, soak the tube in warm soapy water.

Look after the filters: Many vacuums have at least one filter that is washable. Check where your vacuums filters are located, then remove and tap against a hard surface to remove any clumps of dust – do this outside or you’ll end up surrounded by a dust cloud.

If its washable, run the filter under luke warm water and allow to air dry thoroughly – for at 24 hrs – before returning it to your vacuum cleaner. Additional filters in your vacuum may not be washable, so be sure to check the instruction manual. If they’re not washable, just tap them against a surface to remove clumps of dust then return them to the vacuum.

Brush heads: Make sure the brush on the head is free from hair and threads. If it becomes jammed, cut (don’t pull) any threads that prevent it from rotating. Be careful to avoid cutting the bristles.

Nasty smells: Smelly vacuums are usually the result of not emptying your vacuum regularly enough or possibly sucking up something. Check these first, then give the outside a wipe over with an antibacterial wipe or warm soapy water and a cloth to keep it smelling and looking fresh.

For bagless vacuums, wash the cannister in warm soapy water after emptying and leave it to completely air dry before putting it back in the vacuum.

If your vacuum still isn’t running to the best of its will, then its time to buy a new one.

And here are a few tips to remember when vacuuming. This should help reduce the amount of times you vacuum.

  • 1. Use the vacuums crevice tool to clean around the edges of your room.
  • 2. Use the vacuums crevice tool or flat universal piece to clean under furniture.
  • 3. Start at the corner furthest from the door. Vacuum left to right and then front to back.
  • 4. vacuum your way to the door.