Friday, October 3, 2014

T'is the Season of preparing for the Holidays

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The season of holiday gift giving is upon us, and I am here to help you with your list.  In need of some last minute Halloween goodies, getting ready for Thanksgiving, or doing some early holiday shopping for the table, these products are perfect. 
Before I tell you about the special for this month, I know for most people, the holidays are a stressful time with all the preparatory work that goes into it all.  I do not have too many things I have to worry about, because it is just me, but my mother does.  She waits until two weeks before Thanksgiving, and two weeks before Christmas to get everything ready for whoever drops by for dinner, BUT you have to let her and my father know you are coming.
I have learned in my research of blogging and reading other people’s blogs on the subject of decorating and entertaining for the holidays, which the idea situation for this time of the year, is to prepare NOW.  I am not saying that my mother’s methods are wrong. There was a time where she would start looking for me and my siblings’ toys in August for Christmas, and my dad would look for turkey deals in early October, but the method they use now to entertain for the holiday is THEIR method, and it works for them in their stage in life.
1.      Are you sending cards?   Get your list started now.  If you make them (which I do), get the materials now.  You do not have to start them now (early October), but making them in late October puts a damper on things. The idea time to gather and make cards is late September.  If you are not a crafter, premade cards are the way to go, but do not go to a store.  My suggestion is to look for someone online, such as sites like Etsy, Zibbet, or Art Fire.  Why?  These are people who dedicate their lives for making cards and they will customize for your needs.  Even if you need one card, the tick here, is to save time.  Some may be a little expensive, but the reason is some artisans have billable hours, and some work per piece.  I explain it a little bit more in another blog.  Places like Hallmark, American Greetings, and other companies like these have generic cards that often do not reflect your taste, your cultural, or what you want to say.  So if you want 50 blue and white Hanukkah and Christmas cards that says, “Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas” in Spanish, Hallmark is not going to have it, but Nadine, an artisan you meet on Etsy will customize the order for you, and have it for you, in a week, and at a price you and her agreed on.
2.     What about entertaining guests?   This is one of the best times of the year to break out the good china and dishes, and have a great time?  Only if you like it like that.  Now it is the time to plan your party.  If you can afford it, hire a culinary student to fix your meal.  Call around with some prices in mind, not only are you helping a student get through school, but you are again customizing a meal that is pleasing to your guests, and you do not have to slave over a hot stove.  If hiring a student chef is not your thing, you can easily whip up a meal, but in either case, plan out your meal.   Think about who is coming, and if they are bringing a guest or two (please not 10).  Also think about the dietary needs of your guests.  Prepare a meal that meets all of those needs.  On the invitation, ask them to call you ahead of time if there are any diet restrictions you should know about, and keep that in mind when you shop.   You want your guests to feel welcomed and comfortable, especially if they are staying overnight.
3.     Speaking of staying overnight, if you are going to have overnight guests, how about a hospitality basket?   They are really fun to make, and it will make your guests feel like they are staying in a 5-star hotel.   Start with a largeenough basket to hold everything in.  Place in the basket a set of towels (one set person guest if a couple is staying), a bar of soap, lotion, toothbrush and toothpaste or gel (in case they forget anything), favorite snack, magazines, and their favorite music (or holiday tunes) (do not forget to have a player of some kind).
4.     Finally, if you are going any place special, make sure you have everything to make the trip smoother, rather you drive or fly someplace.  My trip to Disney world is turning sour, because I did last minute planning, and everyone in my traveling party is not feeling it at the moment. My deadline is at the end of the month.   So, what is going on this month at Longaberger?
The month of October is all about the anticipation of a Christmas stocking.  Christmas stockings hold little presents for children (and adults alike).  I remember getting fruit, a coloring book, and some little trinket, as well as money in my stocking.   This month’s special is the StockingBasket and theTree Trimming, Little Stocking Basket.  Inspired by Tami Longaberger’s recollection of her first Christmas stocking given to her by her father, the late Dave Longaberger, many of these products are perfect as gift baskets, table settings, organizing and more. This special runs through October 31st and watch for other specials throughout the month.
 Visit my website at www.longaberger.com/patricialogan. Also look for other blog posts, throughout the holiday season, where I will show you how to decorate your home for the holidays, or feature a product that would be perfect for you, as a gift, or for entertaining, decorating, or organizing.   Let me know if you have any questions, want to book a party, or want to earn some extra money by PM on Facebook, or by emailing me at plogan721@att.com.


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