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Always be prepared for the unexpected guest. Whether it is a friend stopping by after work or neighbors gathering on the front porch for an impromptu drink, here are a few tips so you are always party ready.

Whether you are entertaining overnight guests or friends just dropping by, the powder room is the one area all will ask to visit. Have you taken inventory of this part of your home lately? Make your bathroom boutique beautiful by implementing our top points below. 

May can be a crazy month with the chaos of end of school activities, home projects, and travel plans. But we need to hit pause for one day to celebrate the special mom in our life. With hearts of gold and putting others before themselves, we have gathered a list of ideas to help you honor the special lady in your life.

A few years back my husband and I attended a play that was an adaptation of the classical movie Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, which originally starred Sidney Poitier, Katharine Hepburn, and Spencer Tracy. It was a beautifully written, and quite comical, story based on the difficulties families faced in the 1960s with inter-racial marriage. The scene that stood out the most to me was when the son was trying to bring both families together for dinner. In the last line of the last act, he turns to his father and says, “Dad, we need you at the table.” With that, the father joined the others, and the audience was left with the understanding that healing had begun.

Giving a party requires a great deal of work. If you have been fortunate enough to be included in a festive soiree, it is nice to arrive with a gift for the hostess. The typical present will cost anywhere from $15-$100. What you spend will be determined by your relationship and the type of event. Is it a formal dinner? A backyard BBQ? Also, when possible, know the likes and dislikes of your hostess. If she is allergic to flowers, you probably will not arrive with a bouquet in hand.

1. Choose the table. Will you use a round that seats four or a rectangle that seats twelve? This decision will determine your centerpiece.

Warmer weather will be arriving soon, and I am seeing more of our four-legged members making an appearance in the dog parks and on walking trails. With pets taking more prominent roles in our lives, I thought it would be good to brush up on basic dog etiquette and ownership responsibilities.

Meeting friends for dinner after work, grabbing coffee with your girlfriend or just ordering pizza on a Friday night with neighbors. We all have a deep desire to be connected in a world that often forgets the importance of relationships. Many of us have the desire to entertain, but we let our circumstances keep us from extending hospitality. Often it revolves around our lack of confidence in our ability to host events. I get this!

A toast may be offered in any setting and made to an individual or a group. Increase your confidence at your next social gathering by learning the ins and outs of this ancient tradition.

A perfect entertaining year for me would be hosting a different themed party each month! Will I do that? No. Will I dream about it? Yes! If I cannot have a party every 4 weeks, I can at least help my Lisa Lou family with ideas so hopefully a few of you can carry the torch of hospitality for the rest of us.

  • Writer's pictureSami Reyna

Our Top 20 Teacher Gifts

School is almost out for summer! Many of us want to gift our child’s teacher something special at the end of the year for all the love, kindness, and patience they have poured out on our little ones. Being a teacher is not easy, and they are so deserving of our gratitude especially after this wild 20/21 school year! Some common go-to gifts you might have thought of are bath and body products, Starbucks gift cards and mugs, but below are some additional gift ideas your child’s teacher will be touched to receive:

1. Summer themed beach bag: Fill it with sunscreen, sunglasses, magazines, a towel, and some yummy snacks!

2. Personalized tumbler: The days are long for teachers who are using their voice all day and staying hydrated is essential.

3. Personalized stationery/notepad for her desk.

4. Spa gift card: Any teacher will be anxious to redeem this one to kick off summer!

5. Monogrammed tote bag: Teachers lug around lots of papers, books, and supplies. Help her feel stylish with a new teacher bag.

6. Recipe book of quick, weekday meals for those hectic evenings.

7. School supplies gift basket: Many teachers spend their own money on school supplies! Help them replenish their stash of practical items for next year such as pens, pencils, highlighters, staples, etc.

8. Insulated lunch bag and container set for a quick desk meal.

9. Umbrella and raincoat: Get a matching set they will use for years to come.

10. Mason jar filled with mints/gum: This is a budget friendly idea that goes a long way!

11. Restaurant gift cards are so appreciated. Even teachers go out to eat!

12. Personal laminator and sheets to keep in the classroom will make a teacher’s life a little easier.

13. Cute kitchen towels: It’s one of those things that no matter how many we have we always want more! They make a great gift because they are both stylish and useful.

14. Hand soap with a gift tag that reads: “Hands down, you’re the best teacher!”

15. Basic toolkit for around the classroom will no doubt come in handy!

16. Personalized lanyard: Upgrade the one the school issues them to something a little more special.

17. Personalized pencils that say “Return to ______” so when a student borrows one, they are sure to return it!

18. Potted flowers with flower pick that says, “Thank you for helping me bloom.”

19. Cookie bouquet: Who doesn’t love getting sweets?!

20. Many of the gifts above are appropriate for male or female teachers, but for a true masculine idea: personalized dop kit with shaving supplies! This is always a hit.

Samantha Reyna

Mom to 2 toddlers and loving wife

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