Entertaining & Gathering

How I Make My Kids’ School Day Birthdays Feel Extra Special — Birthday of the Month

Celebrating kid birthdays is a pure joy because kids have very few expectations. Once I asked my daughter what she wanted for her birthday party and she said, "balloons, cake, and my friends" — how simple is that?

When your kiddo's birthday falls on a school day, though, celebrating them on the actual day can get tricky. For starters, they are going to spend most of their day away from you in a classroom and then after school you'll still need to stick to your pick-up, dinner, and bedtime routines. No time for special trips to the aquarium or the zoo! Luckily, I've discovered that kids need very little to feel special — here are the five things we do to celebrate every birthday in our house, even on school days.

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8 Things to Do for the Most Epic Summer Ever — Make More Good

(Image credit: Kristin Teig)

Sorry to be the ones to say this, but summer is almost over. (Winter is coming!) If your summer has just been ho-hum so far, there is still time to right the ship — and even make it better than last summer.

Just consider these eight things a mandatory checklist for you to complete between now and Labor Day.

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The $20 IKEA Hostess Gift That Doesn’t Look Like It’s from IKEA — IKEA Shopping Guide

Happy Wednesday! And also, happy IKEA catalog day! That's right — IKEA's 2018 catalog hits stores today. (If you're not planning a visit to a store any time soon, you can request your copy here and you can also browse it online starting on August 7.)

Got a catalog in your hands? We suggest turning to page 245. If you don't have one yet, just keep reading this post.

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The One Thing I Never Do When Hosting Weekend Guests — Hostess Hacks

There's all sorts of standard advice telling people what to do in order to be a great host for weekend guests (leave freshly washed towels on their beds, share your WiFi password, feed your guests, etc.), but I have one thing that you shouldn't do!

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My Best Hostess Trick When I Have Weekend Guests in the Summer — Hostess Hacks

(Image credit: Bethany Nauert)

Summer is the best time for visitors looking to spend the weekend at my house. For one, the yard looks its best — all lush and green. There's also plenty of hiking and swimming to be done in the mountains where my husband and I live. And I have an excellent go-to hostess trick that I like to pull out.

Hint: It involves a trip to the farmers market.

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10 of Our Best Tips for Easy Summer Entertaining — Summer Entertaining

The summer is the easiest time of year to entertain. The hardest part is finding a date when all your friends and loved ones are free to come over. Once that's done, though, the rest is smooth sailing. You can keep the menu super simple (or, as we recommend later in this story, make it a potluck) and set up a place for people to sit outside. That's it! Easy, right?

Here are a few of our smartest tips to help make your life even easier — and to make this summer's annual backyard cookout the best ever.

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