Thursday, November 18, 2010

I Know 14 Ways to have a Fresh and Festive Holiday!

I love holiday season. Okay, I hate, hate, hate the stress and bustle... but, I love the smells, food and merriment. In fact, I think the holidays end up giving my sense of smell and taste a fresh & festive treat. Snuggle Blue Sparkle Ultra fabric softener & TwitterMoms have asked me to share my top 14 ways to have a fresh and festive holiday. So, I am up for the challenge. Let's see if you agree.

Let's start by filling the house with fresh smells. I have children and pets and need a little help in this area sometimes. Here are a few ways I combat that.

1. Crank out the Cookies. I just love the smell of fresh warm cookies from the oven. Since there are so many great reasons this season to get baking. It doesn't matter what kind you make... snickerdoodles, chocolate chip, or peanut butter. They will fill your home with yummy smells all day.

2. Try some Hot Spiced Cider. I highly suggest dusting off the crock pot and making a large batch of hot spiced cider for your next get together... or even just on a lazy Sunday. Put mugs and a ladle nearby so your guests or family can help themselves.

3. Bake Bread. When is the last time you treated your family to a fresh loaf of bread? I have a honey oat recipe that is too die for. Making this in the afternoon gives my house a good homey feeling all night. Then we can enjoy some nice thick slices for dinner, and toast them up for breakfast the following morning.

4. Bake with Pumpkin. I am a huge fan of baking treats with pumpkin. My husband loves pumpkin rolls, pumpkin bars, pumpkin cookies... and of course, pumpkin pie! There is something about the spices that really make me feel relaxed and happy.

5.Cuddle up with a Mug. Maybe this sounds strange, but if I could make coffee air fresheners, I would in a heartbeat. Or how about a cup of chai tea? Either will give your kitchen a little boost of fresh, warm scents.

6. Beautify with a Bouquet. I personally don't think it gets much fresher than flowers on the table. I know that flower prices are a bit higher during the winter months, but let yourself splurge a little. Go for a pre-made bouquet that is bright and cheery.

7. Give a Lemon a Squeeze! I love citrus scents. Lemons can have so many fabulous uses. Slice one up and throw a wedge or two in your water for a very fresh taste. Or, use a lemon half with a bit of baking soda for a fresh scrubber on counters or the sink. The smell is invigorating and lemons have some great natural cleaning power.

8. Pass the Cranberries. I adore baking and cooking with Cranberries. They are so easy to use for a fresh cranberry sauce or in a quick bread. Cranberries pair well with orange flavors and oranges are also lovely and aromatic.

9. Save your Fir Boughs. I love decorating with garlands. Not just because they are lovely for the holidays, but they have such a lovely fresh and clean scent. But them on your banisters or on top of shelving for a festive decorating touch.

10. Don't Just Lick Your Peppermint. Have you ever used peppermint oil for spicing up the holidays? Putting a little in a saucepan simmering in water is one way. Or you can add a touch to your throw pillows for a fresh burst of festive fun.

11. Flame On! There are so many fabulous candle scents out there these days. I think you can find just about every scent under the sun. I am rather partial to apple & cinnamon as well as eggnog. The candles also give your holiday scene a fabulous mood.

12. Break Out the Hardhats. I adore gingerbread. The spices really light up my kitchen, but don't just stop with cookies. Grab the kids and some decorating supplies to snazz up your men as well as throw together your own gingerbread house. A family made gingerbread house not only gives off yummy scents, but can make a very festive decoration for your home.

13. Freshen the "unfreshenables". Because the holidays come with a lot of waste... garbage, scrap, packaging don't forget to keep your garbage can smelling it's best. Throw a dryer sheet under your garbage bag and it will keep bad smells at bay.

14. Make Your Own Air freshener. Just a small saucepan with a bit of lemon or a cinnamon stick and apple cider set to simmer will fill your whole home with a lovely scent. Completely natural and phtalate free just keep an eye on the water level.

 If you follow and bake your way through my list, you will have a fabulous smelling and festive home. Now, I don't mean you need to eat your way through the list, just bake and give away as gifts. As you can tell I love natural scents in my home. We are pretty fragrance free, but have learned to make the most of natures own freshness. Enjoy and have a happy holiday season!

A special thanks to Snuggle & TwitterMoms for this topic. Also as an added treat for my readers, 
Curl up with Snuggle®, the Ultimate in Snuggly Softness®! Get a $1.00 Snuggle® coupon and enjoy the scent of Blue Sparkle® Ultra that lasts for 14 days of freshness!

*Disclaimer - I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Snuggle blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.
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