Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Is Your Dining Room Ready for the Holidays?


I can't get bored of these beautiful fall leaves!

Now it's November. How the year flies by! Thanksgiving is 24 days away, and Christmas is 56 days away. Think about things you might want to get done this month regarding these upcoming holidays.

Last month we thoroughly cleaned and organized our kitchens. This month it's time to reap the rewards of our hard work. Time for parties, gatherings, holidays, visitors, and impromptu game nights.

QUICK THINGS TO DO TODAY:

  • Today I'm changing out the D batteries in the three Maglite flashlights I keep ready at all times. (One is in my car, one is under my bed where I can reach it in the night, and one is by the back door, used for finding black dogs in the yard on dark nights). My flashlight batteries are still working, but I want them to be at their very best, super powerful selves in case of emergency. D batteries are expensive, so I'll save out the ones I'm removing from the flashlights and use them for other purposes, as they still have some juice left in them. I'll prioritize brand new batteries for my three mission-critical flashlights that I depend on working perfectly at a moment's notice.

  • Pay rent/mortgage and bills if you haven't yet.

  • Look over your calendar for upcoming birthdays during November. Mail cards, send gifts, or send flowers to anybody on your list for this week.

  • Are you attending any plays, musicals, concerts or symphonies this winter? Buy tickets now if you haven't yet.

  • Remove any Halloween decorations, keeping up Thanksgiving and fall themed ones (unless you're the type of person who enjoys having Halloween decor out for months or year-round!) Store your decorations safely away in a well-marked box. Leave anything that still looks autumn-related: my pumpkins are staying out and so is my orange tablecloth. Keep burning your Halloween candles, they're a great fall color. Plus, if we don't burn them up, we can't go shopping for new Christmas candles!

TODAY'S PROJECT: Dining Room


Welsley Tablecloth, at Crate and Barrel

Let's get our dining rooms ready for the upcoming holiday entertaining season! I've chosen this project today not only because I typically clean my dining room in the first couple days of November, but also because I'm throwing a small fondue party tonight.


Cast Iron Fondue Set, at Crate and Barrel

Whether or not you are throwing Thanksgiving at your own home, you'll want a clean, organized, enjoyable dining room to eat dinner in over the holiday months. You might throw impromptu cocktail parties, or have friends over for a soup-and-salad meal. Maybe you'll do late-night or rainy-day crafts, spread out on your table.

I'll start by removing cobwebs from the ceiling and corners, then using the same broom to sweep the floor. Next I'll wash my two dining room windows and the glass door that leads to the kitchen. I'll hang freshly cleaned velvet curtains at the windows.

Next I'll vacuum, then sponge off my beige upholstered chairs. This takes just about 1 minute per chair. I'll dust the table, windowsills, and baseboards. I'm going to dust the wood slats on each chair, then dust the outside of the curio cabinet that sits in my dining room. I cleaned out the curio cabinet last week, so it's looking nice.

Don't forget your light fixture or chandelier - mine is dusty and needs some light bulbs replaced. Climbing on a chair and dusting this is the most time consuming part of this project today, I think.


Gold Speckled Glassware, at Pier 1

The last part of my project is thoroughly mopping the hardwood floors, using an almond-scented wood floor cleaner.

When I'm done, I'll put a clean dark brown and teal harvest-themed tablecloth on the table. For table decor, I'll set out a long wooden candle holder that has eight holders for tea lights. I usually put fresh flowers on the table, but the multiple fondue pots we're using will need lots of room.


Cranberry Joy Room Spray, from The Body Shop

I'll finish by spraying a cranberry scented room spray around the room. My guests will eat fondue, soup and salad tonight on a clean table in a restful room.

LOVELY BLOGS: Tidy Mom


"A place for everything." A homemaking and organizing blog. Currently they're hosting a pie blog hop; sharing tips for hair extensions (is this a fashion blog after all?); and offering advice on how to clean your washer. I'm amazed that nearly every post here gets hundreds of comments!

http://tidymom.net/

LOVELY BOOKS: Vegan Gingerbread Houses eBook


This is the nicest ebook I've seen in a long time. There's pages and pages of beautifully photographed steps to making the gingerbread houses, and lavish photos of house ideas. Plus of course recipes. You can read it online for free. I am impressed!

Vegan Gingerbread Houses, at My Vegan Cookbook

LOVELY LINKS FOR TODAY:

Along Came a Cider: 12 Sweet-Tart Recipes (Epicurious)

Cheese Fondue Recipe (Epicurious)

Hoot Owl Cookies (My Vegan Cookbook)

Thanksgiving Coast-to-Coast (Epicurious)

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