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A beautiful table using what is at the grocery store is a solution to all of those family dinners coming up. When I saw it, my imagination went crazy.
I love pumpkins and have used them for years now along with gourds, pine cones even dried leaves it is always pretty. Never did I think to hollow out the little pumpkins to put votive candles, tooth picks, name cards anything you can think of. If you use the pumpkin for baking, it can be dried out and serve food in it: function, beauty, and no clean up.
I thought of artichokes. If you clean them and separate (pull leaves back enough), they hold the little votive candles. They look so cute while you enjoy eating the artichoke hearts in the dish as usual. Dividing the avocado? Same thing, why not put the dip inside the shell instead of a separate dish?
Peppers are so colorful, they would brighten any table. Either buy extra or use part of the food itself to make a holiday or special dinner very original. Most of it is just not throwing away inedible before using it to enhance the table.
Candlelight makes everything look special. Votives cost cents if you look around (especially before, or right after Halloween). How special any table can look with a little thought before throwing out the trash?
By Luana M. from San Diego, CA
The various seasonal holidays have always been fun to celebrate with lots of decorations throughout the house. But I now find my storage space is more limited and I often am rushed to get all the decorations up in time for the holiday.
So, my solution has been to merely put up a season wall, a small wall at the focal point in our living room that has a small table under it. For each holiday, even St Patty's Day, the wall and table get decorated.
All the decorations have to fit in one storage bin, marked for the occasion. I am no longer tempted to buy all the cute stuff out there for the various holidays, and my children have happily been the recipients of all my extra holiday decorations.
By Lynne from Chula Vista
The Christmas season seems to stretch many people's budget even tighter than it is already stretched. I know that's true for my personal situation. One way that I have reduced holiday expenses and the cost of future holiday decorating is by learning to be more crafty, more frugal, and more creative with decorating. When choosing Christmas decorations I look for items that can be transitioned into upcoming holidays or seasons. I take advantage of after Christmas sales to get really good deals on items I can use in the upcoming year.
Red is a popular color during Christmas. It is also a color that is used for Valentine's Day and for numerous patriotic holiday decorations. By shopping with future holidays in mind, I can find tablecloths, napkins, paper plates, ribbons, baskets, serving trays, and many other red items that are on sale after Christmas. I always look for red stars and red hearts because they transition easily to other holidays. Stuffed animals, such as teddy bears and dogs that are frequently on sale after Christmas, can be used for Valentine decorations or gifts.
White, gold, and silver can be incorporated into various other holiday decorations. Christmas tree lights are always on sale after Christmas. These can be used in a variety of ways in the upcoming year. Simply placing mini lights inside of a glass jar gives you a quick, easy start on a beautiful tabletop display for any holiday.
One way to cut costs at New Year's is to purchase an assortment of prepackaged Christmas gift boxes such as meat and cheese gift sets, gourmet popcorn gift sets, holiday cookie and cracker packages, and various other food related gift sets at the after Christmas sales. I use these items to inexpensively create impressive looking snack trays for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.
Seasonal sales and after holiday sales are ideal times to find items that I can use and reuse in a variety of ways to decorate for various holidays. Living on a small budget requires that holiday decorations and celebrations be kept simple. Smart shopping and creative decorating keeps each holiday celebration affordable, enjoyable, and memorable.
By VeronicaHB from Asheboro, NC
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Red and green items are usually drastically reduced after Christmas and New Years - candles, paper goods, dishes, etc. Think ahead to two other upcoming days that you will use those colors, namely red for Valentine's Day, and green for St. Patrick's Day.
I prefer to hang my holiday wreaths on the inside of our front door. The door has a large window in the middle. I don't like the look of the over the door hangers so I decided to attach a clear Command Hook (holds 3 lbs.) to the glass.
I like to display one of the larger decorative banners on the flagpole on my porch for all the seasons, holidays and occasions. They're nylon, nearly indestructible, and can be washed in the washer when they get dusty.
I love things that have more than one purpose. This table runner was 10 cents at a yard sale this summer. One side was fall leaves, the other was holiday snowmen.
Fresh vegetables from your garden can make a beautiful table decoration. I change the centerpiece on my table according to what vegetables are in at the moment.
This Valentine hint, which will also work for Easter, is something I figured out when Christmas decorating. When we went to hang our collection of seven Santa ornaments, I didn't want to put all those holes in my new walls...
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Does anyone know where I might find a set or several garden/decorative flags with holiday or seasonal themes at a thrifty price? I have several small flags (about 12in x 18in) for the mini flag poles, but would like to mount a flagpole on my porch for the larger house/decorative flags (about 2' x 3').
These flags are pretty expensive ($10-15 each), but I'd like to get several at a much more affordable price, even if they are used but in good condition. I've checked eBay, but only found a few sold as a set/lot. Most are sold separately and costly! THANKS for any suggestions!
Leah from Shelbyville, Tn
The best time to buy is AFTER the occasion...usually marked down 50% to 75% or more and then you have them for next year.
Or you could make them -- if they're small you could download clipart, print out an iron on template onto special iron-on paper, iron it on to a small piece of canvas, and you'll be set.
you may want to check with your local freecycle . just go there and register now you have to give something up first as a good faith type thing but than you can post and ask if anyone wants to get rid of theirs
Too late for this spring and summer, but in early Autumn you can probably find them on clearance in the craft stores and garden centers. That's when I usually get mine if my currently hanging flag has started to shred apart.
Have you tried Dollar Tree? Everything is $1. You might not find a lot of them you want to buy, but I'm betting you might find one or two there. Its worth your time to look.
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Do you want to know the way to keep your outdoor flags from fading as fast? Spray both sides of the flag with a fabric protector (like Scotchguard). Let it dry or hang your flag. It will keep your flags flying brighter for longer.
By Vera from Little River, SC
What a great idea. I was just thinking I need to replace our "faded glory"! (08/28/2009)
Oh so simple and so wonderful to keep the same flag wave life extended! (08/28/2009)
Timely hint, especially with the anniversary of 9/11 and the move to fly Old Glory that day. Wish I'd have thought of this! (08/29/2009)