Tips for Inexpensive Outdoor Entertaining

<b>Tips for Inexpensive Outdoor Entertaining</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Celebrate the warmer days by hosting an outdoor summertime party or barbecue. It’s easy to add pizzazz to an outdoor party and stay on budget, with accessories and color.

Here are some inexpensive ways to add character to your outdoor get-togethers:

1. Make it colorful. For a fast way to give your party a sense of style, color-coordinate your bowls, plates and cups in attention-grabbing colors. Dollar General stores (www.dollargeneral.com) sell plastic tableware in bright colors and patterns. These items are inexpensive enough to buy in multiples, so if you plan on hosting several parties, you can use one color per occasion, then invite guests to your “pink party” or “orange party.”

2. Pep up your decor with peppers. Add a memorable touch by serving condiments or finger foods in hollowed-out green, red and yellow peppers. Simply cut the stems, and fill the peppers with ketchup, mayonnaise, barbecue sauce or any other condiment. Depending on the peppers’ colors, you may be able to coordinate them with the rest of your tableware.

3. Create a field of dreams. Silk flowers can create a beautiful centerpiece or be used in smaller arrangements around the table. Add a whimsical touch by purchasing a variety of silk flowers and planting them upright in the ground. Use them to mark paths through the yard or to the food tables and seating areas. Silk flowers are inexpensive at stores like Dollar General and are economical enough to buy in large quantities. They’re also more durable than real flowers and can be used again and again.

4. Find unique ways to deter bugs. Certain herbs and flowers repel insects. For instance, sprigs of parsley or tansy may help keep ants at bay, while lavender or mint could drive flies away. Set up decorative bowls of herbs in various spots near the guests’ seating. A larger bowl can be the striking centerpiece of a table. Keep your food safe from unwanted company with mesh food covers.

Tips for Inexpensive Outdoor Entertaining

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A Playbook for Tackling Fall’s Toughest Stains

<b>A Playbook   for Tackling Fall’s Toughest Stains</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Red, orange and yellow aren’t just the colors of fall, but also of some of the season’s toughest stains. Throughout the United States, temperatures may be cooling off, but barbecue tailgates, backyard football and other autumn activities are just kicking into gear.

Tough stains from barbecue sauce, scrapes and tumbles can leave their ugly marks on favorite jerseys, jeans and jackets. When these stains pile up, it’s time to call in the big boys of the Offensive Line like the Whirlpool brand Duet steam washer, which can wash up to 16 pair of jeans in a single load, or the Maytag Bravos washer, which offers a large 5.0 cubic foot capacity so you can toss in big loads to save time and money.

When facing heavy soils and tough laundry stains, a little pre-game strategy can help ensure that clothes come out of the washer looking their best. No matter the configuration of the washer or dryer, beat the toughest laundry room opponents with the following tips from Whirlpool’s Institute of Fabric Science (www.instituteoffabricscience.com):

* Rid clothes of tough mud stains from backyard football by first allowing them to dry and then removing any excess with a soft brush. Rinse in cold water to flush out soils, and then wash in the warmest water that is safe for the garment. Air dry.

* Fumble during the tailgate? Remove barbecue sauce by rubbing liquid detergent into the stain and washing in the warmest water that is safe for the garment. Air dry.

* To beat grass stains, soak in a mixture of detergent and water before washing in the warmest water safe for the garment. Air dry.

When blood stains, mud stains and grass stains rear their ugly heads, formulate a winning playbook to get rid of these stains. With the help of the above tips, and the power packed in the newest washers and dryers, any article of dirty clothing can be back in the game.

Barbecue Basics On a Budget

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Simplify your summer entertaining and save money by heading outdoors for a barbecue. They’re the perfect way to enjoy friends, food and the beautiful weather. Here are some practical tips to help you save money while making every barbecue a fun-filled and delicious event:

– Use simple decorations. The summer sky and the great outdoors provide natural beauty, so there’s no need for ice sculptures or china plates. Inexpensive table cloths and color-coordinated plasticware provide ample decoration. For a simple centerpiece, pick flowers from your yard, and place them in a vase or plastic pitcher.

– Keep bugs away by using citronella candles. They provide light and help keep gnats and mosquitoes off guests.

– Use disposable plates, napkins and utensils to make clean-up easy. For example, Dollar General sells packages of paper napkins, foam plates and plastic cups starting at just $1 each. You can also get inexpensive trash bags at Dollar General.

– At the start of summer, stock up on grilling supplies, which can be found inexpensively at discount stores. If needed, buy a new grill. And, don’t forget accessories like scrubbers, grill and basting brushes, baskets, forks and spatulas.

– Plan a simple menu, which will help keep costs low. Choose your main dish, such as hot dogs or hamburgers, and build your menu around it. Serve side dishes that are inexpensive and easy to prepare such as potato chips, pretzels, canned baked beans and pasta salad. Or make your party a potluck and have your guests bring the side dishes. For easy and inexpensive recipe ideas, visit www.dollargeneral.com.

– Build a condiment bar, including essentials such as ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, pickles and relish.

– And don’t forget drinks. Fill a plastic tub with ice for serving cold drinks such as soda, juice boxes and bottled water.

– End your barbecue on a sweet note. Use brownie, cake or cookie mixes to make a sweet treat without any mess or fuss. For a cool treat, make a pitcher of Kool-Aid, pour it into ice trays, insert popsicle sticks into each cube and freeze.

Gift Ideas for Dads of All Types

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Racking your brain to think of the perfect Father’s Day gift?

Not to fret, there are great gift ideas to match the countless interests and hobbies of fathers out there. Here are some options to consider:

* For the Sports Fanatic: Does dad spend too much time on the golf course or on the court in his mad pursuit for perfection? Give him a hand and buy him a new Sony DVD Handycam camcorder. He can film his golf swing or backhand in slow motion video, analyze his technique on TV and improve his game in record time.

* For the DIY Dad: If dad enjoys tackling those summer fix-it projects, new tools, storage organizers and do-it-yourself books and DVDs make great gifts. Or pick up a gift card from a home improvement store and let him choose the perfect tool for his next undertaking.

* For the Clothes Horse: New sunglasses and watches are perfect gifts for dads who are always in style. They will make him look and feel good.

* For the Gardening Guru: If your dad has a green thumb, you might want to get him some new tools for his favorite trade; that leaf blower or weed whacker he’s been eyeing; a few plants; or a book on the famous gardens of Versailles.

* For the Barbecue Buff: If your dad loves to show off his ability to cook with fire, then consider barbecue utensils, aprons, cookbooks or even a new grill. Top it off with a gift membership to a “steak of the month” or “beer of the month” club to make for a perfect summer feast.

With these ideas, you’ll be able to find a gift that’s thoughtful, useful and appreciated – just like dad himself.