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How Do I Get Hot Chocolate Out of My Carpet?

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Holidays

Hot chocolate is a staple on cold winter nights and holiday parties. Unfortunately, this dark liquid can stain your carpet quickly in the event of a spill. While it looks like it’ll be there forever, chocolate can be removed from carpeting. Just be sure to clean up the spill as soon as you see it to keep it from setting.
Begin by blotting up as much of the spill as you can with an absorbent cloth. Don’t rub the stain; you don’t want to work it further into the carpet, just absorb some of the liquid to help lighten the spill. Keep blotting until the cloth comes away dry.
After blotting the liquid from the spill, use one of the following mixtures. As a note, pretest any solution used on an inconspicuous location first. If a small amount of solution results in color transferring to a white cloth, use a different spot solution.
• Mix one fourth (¼) teaspoon dish detergent with one (1) cup of lukewarm water (don’t use any mixture stronger than this!)
• A non-flammable spot removal solution, such as a dry-cleaning type solvent.
• A mixture of 1 part vinegar to 2 parts warm water.
• Warm water
Dip a soft cloth into one of the above solutions. Use this to carefully blot the area of the spill. Begin on the outer edges of the spill and work towards the center. This will keep it from spreading.
Keep blotting the stain until you get the majority of it up. Rinse the cloth with water and pat the area again to help get any remaining soap out of the fibers.
If none of these solutions work, remember that professional cleaners are a great way to attack stains. Professionals have the equipment and skills to attack spots more aggressively.
Spills happen, particularly during parties. If you happen to notice some hot chocolate on your carpet, don’t panic. Take steps to clean it up as quickly as you can, and you shouldn’t notice any lingering stains to remind you of what once was spilled there. Learn more on removing chocolate stains here!

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The Perfect Party Playlist

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Holidays

The Fourth of July is almost here.  Independence Day means family gatherings, food and decorations.  July is an amazing time, the middle of summer; marked by the outdoors, warm nights and fireworks in the evening air.  Throughout the country memories are made in very separate locations and yet have much in common with one another, from helping a father with the grill in Seattle to chasing fireflies with neighbors in the Appalachians or waving a flag at a parade in Phoenix. 

Creating these memories alongside friends and family can be one of the best inspirations for celebrating and celebrations are often the best time to play music!  A perfect playlist fits the mood and rhythm of the occasion and inspire memories down the road for all those listening.  The playlist below may just help create those moments for the guests on your special day.

  • Born In The U.S.A. – Bruce Springsteen
  • Hotel California – The Eagles
  • Georgia On My Mind – Ray Charles
  • City of New Orleans – Willie Nelson
  • Miami – Will Smith
  • Texas Women – Hank Williams Jr.
  • Save Me, San Francisco – Train
  • Rocky Mountain Way – Godsmack
  • New York State of Mind – Billy Joel
  • Los Angeles – Anya Martin
  • Arizona – Mark Lindsay
  • Ohio – The Black Keys
  • Florida Moon – Gene Mitchell
  • Sweet Home Alabama – Lynyrd Skynyrd
  • Viva Las Vegas – Elvis Presley
  • Albuquerque – Sons Of The Desert
  • Wild Montana Skies – John Denver
  • Sunny In Seattle – Blake Shelton
  • Sweet Home Chicago – Eric Clapton
  • East St. Louis Toodle-Oo – Steely Dan

 

The above is just a start – can you think of more songs about American cities?  Using this list, craft your own collection to inspire mid-summer memories. 

Decorating Your Home for Winter

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Hints and Advice, Holidays

6543918_SDoes the house seem bare now that the tree and yuletide décor is gone? Yes, the holidays are over but that doesn’t mean you can’t decorate for winter.

Rearrange your furniture. If you have a fireplace, pull furniture towards the hearth to create a cozy gathering spot.

Add some bright pops of color to counteract the blue and silver scene outside.

Just like you bundle up to go outdoors during these cold months, use slipcovers on your dining room chairs for a fun layered look. Layer beds with textured throws and pillows. Add dozens of throw pillows to your couch and chairs in your living room.

Throw a sheepskin rug by the fireplace or better yet put one on each side of your bed. Your footsies will thank you when you get up each morning.

Hang thick velvet curtains. Hang these right over the window treatments you already have. Once the warmer months arrive you can simply take them down.

You can still dress up the mantle of your fireplace. The greens and holly may have gone, but why not create a scene using a white, silver and a pale blue palette? Add glittery snowflakes too.

Hang glass icicles from the chandelier over your dining room table. Glittered branches in glass vases make a beautiful centerpiece.

Add snowflake decals to any mirrors in the house. If you have any snowman décor from the holidays, it is perfectly acceptable to leave those out.

Don’t Let the Holidays Sneak Up on You

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Christmas, Events, Family, Hints and Advice, Holidays, Thanksgiving, Tips

16311397_SThere are so many already aired holiday ads, and the stores have had their winter holiday aisles up since just after Labor Day. Retailers certainly won’t let us forget that the holidays are almost upon us. Our email inboxes are already full of coupons for holiday cards and ideas for holiday meals. So, have you made your appointment for your family holiday photo yet? Are YOU ready for the holidays?

Without putting the horse before the cart, here is a checklist of items you can do now so that you are not overwhelmed as the holiday season arrives.

  • Get out your holiday recipes. Check your pantry to make sure you have what you need so you don’t have to run to the store in the midst of holiday food prep.
  • Plan your Thanksgiving meal. Order your turkey, if that’s what’s on the menu. Your butcher will thank you for not waiting until the last minute.
  • Also plan your holiday baking. You can easily make breads and cookies now and freeze them for future use.
  • Buy containers for freezer meals, holiday gifts and baked goods. The stores are full of holiday themed disposable ware.
  • Take stock of your china, holiday tablecloths, serving pieces and stemware. If you need additional items you have plenty of time to look for sales.
  • Review your address book. Update any changes and count how many holiday cards you need to order. It’s also not too early to start writing your holiday letter.
  • Make your gift list and plan your budget. Look through your wrapping supplies and see if you need extra tissue paper, ribbons and bows.
  • Make travel arrangements if you will be visiting family out of town. Service your car so that it is ready for the trek to Grandma’s house.
  • If you are hosting family, check your supply of extra linens, towels and throw blankets. Schedule carpet cleaning, window washing and a professional house cleaning so that your home is sparkling.
  • And finally, don’t forget to plan for a haircut, and a mani/pedi so that you start the holiday season relaxed and looking great.

Labor Day Plans

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Events, Family, Hints and Advice, Holidays

14663731_SFor those of us who are not having Labor Day weekend parties but have instead planned camping trips here are a few tips to make the holiday as enjoyable as possible. Labor Day is such a busy camping time that it’s crucial to make reservations at the campground of your choice in advance. Waiting until the last minute is likely to leave you scrambling to find a spot for the weekend.

Please check the weather. Your local television station will have up-to-date forecasts. Pack clothing and camping gear depending on the weather. If it’s predicted to be cold, pack warm clothing, long-sleeves and pants. If the weather is going to be hot, opt for shorts and tank tops. But, keep in mind that you’ll need to pack at least one warm outfit for each person, because nights can be cool during Labor Day weekend.  It’s also imperative to pack bug spray, wet wipes, toilet paper and a first aid kit.

Plan your menu. Do you have a camping stove or will you be cooking directly over the fire? This is an important difference. If you are cooking over an open fire, pre make many of your meals as possible, wrap them in foil and reheat. Burritos are an especially easy option in this situation. If you have a stove, the world is your oyster. Don’t forget to pack paper towels and dish soap for easy cleanups. A huge container of water for cleaning, drinking and brushing your teeth is also a necessity.

Since you will be “unplugging” from the real world you’ll want to bring a deck of cards, a football or a Frisbee for entertainment.

And most importantly, bring marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate. It’s never a good camping trip without making smores.