Preparing for Company in 60 Minutes or Less; Speed Cleaning 101

A home is made for entertaining. The anticipation of house guests’ arrival is exciting and thoughtfully prepared. With the holidays, however, you can’t always predict who will be stopping by. Here are some great tips from Apartment Therapy on cleaning up in a pinch when you don’t always get the advanced notice you had hoped for.

1. Gather the basics. Floor wipes, bleach wipes, countertop spray and an air freshener like Febreeze. A magic eraser is great to have on hand as well.

2. Pick up the floor and put everything away (or into the drawer to deal with “later.”) Clearing the floors and surfaces first makes everything go much faster later.

3. Vacuum the floors or, if you have one, let the Roomba do the work while you move onto #4.

4. Spray down all kitchen/dining room surfaces with countertop spray and wipe down. Tackle any tough spots with your magic eraser.

5. Use the bleach wipes to wipe down the sink, toilet and shower in the bathroom.

6. Wipe down bathroom and entryway mirrors with the glass cleaner.

7. Shake out the rugs and throws and straighten pillows. Use air freshener on upholstered surfaces.

3 Festive, Holiday-Themed Place Card Holders

When it comes to weekday dinners, place cards are typically not found on M/I Homes’ dining room tables, but holiday festivities are a fantastic reason to bring them out! These festive pieces will make your meal more organized and more fun! To spark your inspiration, here are three place card holder ideas guaranteed to make guests feel welcome.


Thanksgiving Place Card Holders

Let’s be honest, your table is likely very full on this holiday! But these adorable turkey candle place card holders are small and take the guess work out of, “where do I sit?” They also double as cute party favors for family and guests. Buy a set of 4 for only $7.99 online.


Christmas Place Card Holders

Add a dash of Christmas cheer to your table during the snowy holidays. Direct your guests in style with these frosted reindeer cardholders. All you need is to do is spray-paint or Mod Podge small plastic reindeer figurines you can find at select craft stores. Plus, they’ll keep the kids entertained while you eat.

News Year’s Eve

New Year's Eve Place Card Holders

Ring in the New Year with a little glitz and glam with these eye-catching gold disco ball cardholders. Easy to make, these flashy additions to your dinner table are sure to keep your guests raving way past midnight. Check out the directions here.

How to Pick a Table and Chairs for Holiday Hosting

How to Pick a Table and Chairs for Holiday Hosting

The holidays are coming. Are you ready for the throngs of people you’re expecting for a season’s worth of dinner parties? If not, it might be time for a new dining table and chairs. But don’t go buying the first thing you see.

There are pros and cons to each table shape. And then there are all those extra chairs you need to factor in. It’s enough to make your head spin!

How to choose a dining table

How to Pick a Table and Chairs for Holiday Hosting: Dining Table

Round tables are arguably the most space efficient in terms of creating a comfortable exchange between diners. In the case of both the round and oval table, no one need sit at a corner when the table is crowded beyond its ideal capacity. However, round and oval tables may be off-putting for those who prefer to match the clean lines found in the rest of the dining area.

Square and rectangular tables use the shape of a room to their advantage. Their 90-degree angles provide clear, unencumbered walkways around the perimeter. The downside is that the longer a table (rectangular or oval) is, the more difficult it is for those sitting on the farthest ends to hear one another. Plus, when a square or rectangular table is overstuffed with guests, someone’s bound to get stuck straddling a corner.

If you’re lucky, you’ll find that one shape accommodates both your functional needs and aesthetic wants. For 10 to 12 people, an oval or rectangular table is best.

How to choose a dining chair

How to Pick a Table and Chairs for Holiday Hosting: Chairs

Once you determine the table you want, you’ll need chairs to seat your guests. “Most people buy dining chairs for looks without giving enough attention to comfort,” says Triggs. “Make sure you’re purchasing comfortable chairs that guests will enjoy sitting in for long periods of time.”

Chairs with arms are lovely and can be very comfortable, but they’re space hogs when it comes to a large crowd. Should you wish to have such chairs for big parties, Triggs suggests limiting them to the heads of a rectangular or oval table. Armless chairs, on the other hand, will allow you to squeeze more of them around a table of any shape.

But just how many chairs does one household need for that handful of large-scale dinner affairs annually? First buy the amount of chairs that will naturally fit around your dining table at its everyday size (likely its smallest size). If you can afford the space and the cost, Triggs suggests storing additional full-size chairs on either side of the buffet, next to an entry console and maybe in a guest room if necessary.


Original content via Houzz 

Find more information on how to choose dining chairs here.


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