Outdoor Christmas Decor Checklist

Outdoor Grade Lights and Decorations

At your local home improvement store, you’ll find a wide variety of outdoor grade lights and decorations to choose from. There are traditional string lights, lit-up figures, net lights to surround your trees and shrubs, and large ornaments to hang from trees. When looking for décor appropriate from outdoor use, you want to look for the words ‘outdoor grade’, ‘waterproof’, ‘water-resistant’, and UL which stands for Underwriters Laboratories and means that it meets national industry standards for safety and outdoor use.

Plastic Hook Products

You never want to sever a string light’s electrical cord by using nails to hang lights on your home, so look for plastic hook products that you can nail or screw to the home and hang or wrap lights around them. This makes for easy removal, and also, easy re-installation next year!

Outdoor Grade Extension Cords

For the same reason you want outdoor grade lights and decorations, you want outdoor grade extension cords that can withstand the elements, especially if you live in an extreme weather region with rain, ice, or snow. Tape or secure your outdoor extension cords out of heavy traffic walkways and above ground, water, and snow for the safest installation.

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter Outlet

Speaking of re-installation next year, if you don’t currently have a GFCI Outlet installed outside your home for jobs like these, you’ll want to contact your electrician and have one installed. Then it will be a permanent fixture, making future decorating easy. There is, however, an alternative. You can purchase a portable unit from your local hardware store for 20 dollars or less. This outlet ensures that in the case that your lights overwhelmed the circuit, it would shut off, preventing a potential fire or blowing fuses connected to the lights inside your home. This is an absolute safety must-have for outdoor holiday decorating.

A Reliable Ladder

The qualities you want in a reliable ladder are a wide-spread between its legs, rust-proof hardware, heavy side rails, and a stable stand when you open it. Be sure your ladder will reach the height of your vision. If you can’t reach where you need to standing two steps below the top, you will need to purchase a taller, reliable ladder, or alter your vision for safety.

We hope you have a safe and happy holiday season, from our families to yours!


Best Easter Basket Fillers For All Ages 2017

Easter egg hunts are very typical, and affordable activities for the Easter holiday, but Easter baskets are more exciting and personalized. If you are bringing the kids to a community or church Easter egg hunt, consider making them their own basket. Some people even make a hunt out of the finding of the baskets. Each child’s basket has their name on it and has to swear secrecy they won’t tell someone if they’ve found out where theirs is hidden. If you have children far apart in age, consider having the younger kids hunt for eggs and the older kids receive a basket.

1. Spring/Summer Themed Items

For children who just endured a long winter, Spring and Summer items are the best way to celebrate new life and growth with the coming season. Sunglasses, flip flops, and outdoor and beach toys are great items that can be easily modified to any age for them to enjoy.

2. Books

Books are another item that can be personalized to each child. Journals, how-to draw, short stories, biographies, and best sellers and award winners are great choices for the Easter basket. You can fluff up the Easter basket even further by getting bookmarks, reading lights, and filling a mug with hot chocolate accessories for rainy days.

3. Tools

Empowering children by giving them tools are an awesome consideration for the Easter basket. Young children can receive play tool and older children, real tools. If you don’t care too much for this idea, you can get them something they can create and have the same effect.

4. Paintable Ceramics or Suncatchers

What child or teen doesn’t love creating art and its therapeutic benefits. For less than five dollars you can find a kit or the items needed to give them a neat craft project.

5. Water Bottle

Water bottles are appropriate for all ages and easy to find different designs and colors. Those with built-in ice chambers are nice. You can fill the inside with single serve drink mixes such as Gatorade and Crystal Light. It’s something the kids will enjoy, but also encourages them to stay hydrated and healthy.

6. Movie Tickets

Going to the movies is so special these days. Putting two pair of tickets in your child’s Easter basket and letting him choose who gets to go with him/her is like giving them an experience rather than stuff.