December 3, 2013
For families who choose to put up a real Christmas tree (instead of a store bought tree), it’s about this time of year when they start the hunt for the perfect Christmas tree. Not all Christmas Trees look the same; some have soft, flexible needles while others have firm. Trees can even vary in color, height and width. Depending on your your space, decorations, and other factors, there are a variety of different trees to choose from.
Here are the most common varieties of Christmas Trees:
Fir Tree Varieties:
* A Fraser fir tree has dark green needles 1/2 to 1 inch long with excellent needle retention and a nice scent.
* A Douglas fir tree’s cones hang downward and the tree grows into a cone-shaped naturally. It has 1 to 1-1/2 inch needles that are persistent with a sweet scent. (This tree is found in nearly every tree lot in the Unites States).
* The Balsam fir is a beautiful pyramidal tree with short, flat, long-lasting, aromatic needles.
* The White fir has long blue-green needles that are 1/2 to 1-1/2 inches long (sometimes mistaken for a pine). The fir has a nice shape with a pleasing aroma and good needle retention.
Pine Tree Varieties:
* A Scotch pine tree has stiff branches, two bundled dark green needles 1 to 3 inches long that are retained for four weeks. The aroma is long-lasting and lingers through the entire season. Scotch pine does not drop needles when dry – excellent retention.
* A Virginia pine is dark green to gray in color and the limbs are stout with woody branches. It has only recently been used as a Christmas tree but is one of the most often purchased Christmas trees in the Southeastern United States.
* The White pine is the largest pine in United States and the state tree of Michigan and Maine. The tree retains needles throughout the holiday season but has little or no fragrance and not a good tree for heavy ornaments. The tree is sought by people who suffer from allergic reactions to more fragrant trees.
Spruce Tree Varieties:
* A Colorado Blue Spruce has dark green to powdery blue needles, 1 to 3 inches long and a pyramidal form when young. Colorado blue spruce is very often sold “living” and with an entire root ball – to be planted after the holidays.
* A White spruce has green to bluish green needles but has poor needle retention and they have an unpleasant odor when crushed. It is a regional favorite because it grows into the best shapes in the wild. The tree is excellent for heavy ornaments.
Cypress Tree Varieties:
* The Arizona cypress has become a valued Christmas tree. It’s a steeple shaped tree with a pale-green to gray-green color. The leaves are extremely tiny and quite plentiful. They lay close to the branchlet surface in a scale like arrangement and are about 0.1 inches long.
* The Leyland Cypress is dark green – gray in color and has very little aroma. Because it is not in the Pine or Fir family, it does not produce sap, so that those with an allergy to sap can still enjoy a Leyland as their Christmas Tree.
* The Eastern red cedar branches are light but compact and form a pyramidal crown as a young tree. It’s not a true cedar but in fact a juniper. The needles are aromatic and a dark, shiny, green color and sharp and prickly to the touch. It’s been a traditional Christmas tree of the South.
What is your favorite variety of Christmas Tree? Do you prefer a real farm raised tree or a reusable artificial tree?
November 25, 2013
With Thanksgiving in a few days, we know many of you may be hosting your family for dinner. If you’re a bit rusty on how to set the dinner table correctly, here are some basic rules to follow. Aside from these basic rules, have fun and be creative with colors, themes and centerpiece decor. Pinterest has at TON of ideas and we’ve been pinning quite a few ourselves.
Here are the basics:
* Start with the plate or charger. A charger can take the place of a place mat and it helps to keep the dinner plate warm.
* Align the flatware with the bottom rim of the charger/plate and place the flatware on the outside of the plate on the left and right side in order of how you will begin eating a meal. For example, if you are having a salad or soup before the main course, you will place the salad fork on outside of the dinner fork and the soup spoon on the outside of the dinner knife.
* Bread and butter plates sit above the plate and to the left with the butter knife across the plate.
* Stemware is set above and to the right of the dinner plate. The water glass stands above the dinner knife and if you are serving wine, the wine glass will stand to its right.
* The dessert fork and spoon are laid across the top of the setting above the plate and the fork’s tines should face right and the spoon’s bowl should face left.
* If the cloth napkin is lightly starched, pressed, & folded, place it to the left of the plate, under the forks, or on top of the plate. Or, you could drape the napkin through a festive napkin holder and place it on top of the plate.
Now that you know the basic setting, you can make adjustments and have some fun. You could add placement cards for your guests in front of or on top of the plate, center a pretty flower or candle arrangement, and mix vintage china with newer pieces as House Beautiful suggests.
After Thanksgiving, we’ll be offering 15% off all Table Linens from November 29th – December 14th to help take a little of the pressure off of you and save you time on putting together the perfect table setting for your guests.
However you choose to set your table, the focus is on the spirit of the occasion. We wish you all a fabulous Holiday season!
November 19, 2013
If you’re ever near 116th & Olio Road in Fishers, stop in and say hi to Deb. She didn’t really want her picture taken but don’t let her photo shyness fool you. She’s extremely outgoing and loves meeting new people.
Deb will celebrate her 10 year anniversary with Classic Cleaners this coming May and for the last 7 years she has managed the store at 11501 Geist Pavilion Drive in Fishers, IN. Before joining Classic Cleaners, Deb worked as a pharmacy technician and every job prior has always been customer service related.
Today, Deb says the best part about working with Classic Cleaners is the customers. She’s established amazing rapport and relationships with them over the years. She goes above and beyond for her customers and has driven items to and from customer’s homes when they’ve been in a pinch. Some of her customers have become Deb’s friends – she’s even been invited to be a guest at one of her customer’s wedding!
This time of year, Deb is a self-described “Hunters Widow”. Her Husband of almost 12 years, Todd, spends the fall months hunting deer. When he’s successful, Deb can cook just about anything with venison. Most of the time, her guests don’t know it’s deer meat when she whips it up in the form of fajitas, tacos & chili. In fact, her venison chili won a chili contest last year.
Deb doesn’t hunt but she’s always loved the outdoors. Growing up in the country in Wabash, Indiana, she was “never inside”. In the summers she’d play at the river, the reservoir, fish, hike the forest, boat, swim – you name it. And in the winter she’d ride snowmobiles. She even fishes and can put a worm on the hook. Deb isn’t afraid to touch the worm or the fish, but she says she needs plenty of paper towels. Once a month she still visits her family in Wabash and recently visited to celebrate her Grandfather’s 85th Birthday.
When Deb isn’t working, she’s home spoiling her “kids”: 2 Dogs and 2 Cats. She loves to curl up with a good book and watch TV and just relax. On the weekends, Deb and Todd like to go out to a casual dinner at Chili’s where they are known by the same waitress who serves them each time. In the summer they go to their home-away-from-home at Hidden Paradise Campground where they spend time with a group of regulars that have become like family. They’re so close as a group that in the winter, when they aren’t able to visit at the campground, the group gets together for an annual Christmas Party.
Are you a customer of Deb’s? Did you know all this cool stuff about her? We hope you enjoyed getting to know her. Thanks, Deb for all your years with Classic Cleaners – and for making your customers feel appreciated each day.
November 12, 2013
I remember years ago if one drove downtown to work each day, when the work day was done, one drove back to his/her home in the suburbs. If you visited downtown Indianapolis on the weekend, it was unlikely you would pass someone walking on the sidewalks or sitting in the many green spaces we have today. Today, times have changed!
Over the last 20 years, a HUGE revitalization has happened among the streets and neighborhoods of downtown Indianapolis. One could argue our city has always had wonderful downtown restaurants, entertainment, sports, museums and parks. But now, with convenient, walkable (and bike-able) access and the surge in residential development (luxury condos & refurbished historic neighborhoods), downtown is a desirable place to work, live and play.
There are 15 Downtown historic/recognized neighborhoods Downtown:
♦ Babe Denny
♦ Cole Noble Commercial Arts District
♦ Chatham-Arch & Massachusetts Avenue
♦ Cottage Home
♦ Fayette Street
♦ Fletcher Place
♦ Holy Cross
♦ Irish Hill
♦ Lockerbie Square
♦ Old Northside
♦ Pogue’s Run
♦ Ransom Place
♦ St. Joseph
♦ Upper Canal
Individuals who are trying to live a greener lifestyle can leave their car at home and walk to work, to shop, to eat and to visit the many parks and green spaces available downtown. They can use less gas and generate less pollution. And, they have easy access to the Indianapolis City Market, farmers’ markets and winter markets which offer fresh, locally grown foods.
They have access to more than 350 acres of green and public open spaces like the 250-acre White River State Park, Central Canal, Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene & Marilyn Glick, and an 8-mile urban bike and pedestrian path.
Downtown living is all about having fun in a safe, vibrant, friendly, convenient and walkable neighborhood and we’re excited to be a part of the neighborhood. Visit our newest store in Lockerbie Marketplace at 350 E. New York Street. We still have grand opening specials going on and we’d love to see you. Click here for our hours of operation OR, sign up for our free pick-up and delivery service to your downtown home or office.