Holiday Decor From Chip and Jo, the Property Brothers, and Other Stars That’ll Make You Cringe

Instagram / Kohl’s

When it comes to Chip and Joanna Gaines, Drew and Jonathan Scott, Leanne Ford, and other popular reality TV stars, we like to think their holiday decor tastes would be an inspiration for all.

But even TV’s top design pros can take a wrong turn, particularly during the holidays.

As proof, we present some of the most questionable and even creepy holiday decor we’ve seen reality stars buy, sell, or otherwise say is A-OK. Um, do you agree? Check out what we’ve seen and judge for yourself.

Chip and Joanna Gaines present a plant mister ornament

It’s shiny, but it makes no sense.

Magnolia

Chip and Joanna certainly know their way around a modern farmhouse, and their Magnolia shop is bursting with tasteful decor for every room. Still, when it comes to Christmas tree ornaments, a mini plant mister seems like an odd choice.

“Perfect for plant lovers,” the product description insists. Yes, we know plants are popular, but last we checked, no true plant lover would chop down a tree and hang baubles on it, even for the holidays ($10, Magnolia).

Drew Scott croons a Christmas ballad

And since no holiday home is complete without music, did you know that “Property Brothers” star Drew could sing? Yup—he crooned a tune (as seen in the accompanying video) titled “Nothing Feels Better Than Christmas,” which fans can stream on Apple Music or Spotify. Fine, it isn’t the worst thing we’ve heard, but we’re so very glad he can fall back on a successful day job in real estate.

Jonathan Scott offers a vanity ornament

You can’t unsee his stubble.

Kohl’s

Meanwhile, the other “Property Brothers” star, Jonathan, has allowed himself to be turned into an ornament you can hang on your Christmas tree, complete with chin stubble and a tiny tool belt. It’s possible some people find this look festive and fun, but we’re betting most folks will quickly click past this tragic figurine in favor of another snowman or angel instead ($3, Kohl’s).

Leanne Ford trots out ‘carol art’

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A post shared by Leanne Ford (@leannefordinteriors)

“Deck the Halls” is a classic Christmas carol, but it’s also one of the more annoying ditties you can sing—or display on your wall. Still, the co-star of hit show “Restored by the Fords” rewrote this song and designed this poster to celebrate, available at Sapling Press ($30).

Still, though, we thought the “word art” trend has been waning already, and this particular song isn’t exactly something you want guests belting out in your home, right?

Jasmine Roth bought a plastic Santa

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A post shared by Jasmine Roth HGTV (@jasminerothofficial)

Roth has two top shows on HGTV, “Hidden Potential” and “Help! I Wrecked My House,” but we’re not sure either of these programs plays well with this jumbo plastic Santa. Worse, this design star has decided to work him into her own otherwise chic California home vibe this year.

There’s one saving grace, however, in that this Santa is vintage, so perhaps Roth is going for a throwback theme this season?

The ‘Home Edit’ team introduces a Christmas junk drawer

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A post shared by THE HOME EDIT ® (@thehomeedit)

Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin are the genius duo behind the Netflix show “Get Organized With The Home Edit,” and each episode has them taking on the toughest organizing tasks from A-list celebs (Reese! Khloé!).

We dig their sensibility, of course, but must there be a Christmas theme to their junk drawers, too? The tipping point for us: those perfectly placed bottlebrush trees, nestled in their own precious slots. We get why partitions are necessary for a junk drawer, though, so maybe you’ll want these for some purpose. We just doubt you’ll stuff your Christmas lights in here ($3, Container Store).

‘Good Bones’ crew rolls out ornaments made from rocks

Leave the rocks on the ground.

Two Chicks District Co.

If you love the looks from Karen Laine and Mina Starsiak Hawk, the mother-daughter duo on HGTV’s “Good Bones,” you can shop their designs online, including these rocks for the tree. Sure, they sparkle and shine, but unless you’re a family of geologists, these items are still rocks that should otherwise be left in the bin at the natural history museum ($16.50, Two Chicks District Co.).

The post Holiday Decor From Chip and Jo, the Property Brothers, and Other Stars That’ll Make You Cringe appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Source: realtor.com

Tipping Etiquette in the Time of Coronavirus: How Much Is Enough?

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Delivery workers at restaurants, grocery stores, and other essential businesses provide a lifeline to homebound shoppers while the highly infectious and deadly coronavirus circulates, so you might be wondering: When do I need to leave a tip? And how much gratuity is enough?

From curbside pickup to alcohol delivery, there are many services that could warrant a tip, but the etiquette on tipping during a pandemic isn’t obvious.

“This is the time when we should be generous if we can, but there is no hard and fast rule for how much extra to give,” says Diane Gottsman, author of “Modern Etiquette for a Better Life” and founder of the Protocol School of Texas.

So, what does “generous” mean in dollars and cents? Follow these pointers to avoid an etiquette error the next time you go to leave a tip.

1. Always tip for delivery and takeout/curbside pickup

Whether you’re getting Mexican food delivered for Taco Tuesday or placing an order for delivery from your local cannabis dispensary, right now you should tip at least 15% to 20%, Gottsman says. The same goes for grocery or alcohol delivery.

If you’re picking up from a restaurant that started offering curbside pickup in the wake of the pandemic, leave a tip.

“The people that are outside are probably employees they’re trying to save from losing their job,” Gottsman says. “They’re probably working for gratuity but not a large hourly rate.”

But just how much should you tip for curbside or in-store pickup? That depends. While some etiquette experts suggest tipping the same 15% to 20% that you would tip for delivery, others say it’s OK to go lower.

“There is a difference between curbside pickup and actual delivery, and for delivery there’s more involved,” says Elaine Swann, a lifestyle and etiquette expert. “Anyone coming to your front door should get a little more money.”

Still, Swann suggests tipping at least 10% on pickup orders during a pandemic.

When it comes to grocery pickup, the etiquette is a bit more complicated.

“Grocers normally don’t allow their people to take tips; although in this scenario, they might have altered their policy,” Gottsman says. If you want to tip the curbside pickup person at your grocery store, ask first if a gratuity can be accepted.

Most of us aren’t in the habit of tipping drive-up window workers at fast-food restaurants, and that’s still OK, Gottsman says—those workers earn an hourly rate, and staffing the drive-up window is part of their regular job duties.

2. Tip just as generously regardless of who delivers

Whether you order your lunch directly from a restaurant or through a third-party delivery service like Grubhub or DoorDash, you should tip the delivery driver the same amount.

Gottsman suggests at least 15% to 20% here, too—although you might have noticed some delivery apps have a default tip set to 25%. If you’re able to swing it, it’s a nice way to thank the person facing the health risk to deliver essentials to you.

“Whether you’re ordering through a third-party service or the restaurant itself, the tip is intended for the person delivering it to you, so I think they should be treated equally,” Swann says.

Even if you have to pay extra for delivery through a third-party service, service fees shouldn’t cut into your tip. On that note …

3. A service or delivery fee is not a tip

When you see a delivery fee or service charge on your order total, that money doesn’t go to your driver—so don’t use it as an excuse to pinch pennies with the tip.

“A delivery fee covers other costs for the restaurant,” Gottsman says. “It’s really important not to confuse a delivery fee with a gratuity. They are two different things.”

4. Some workers can’t accept tips, but you can still offer a kind gesture

Right now, you might be feeling extra grateful for postal workers delivering mail and packages every day. But mail carriers aren’t allowed to accept cash tips or gifts worth more than $20 in value.

“What you could do for somebody you appreciate is leave a nice candy in the mailbox or a gift card for a cup of coffee,” Gottsman says.

What about your local boutique that’s started delivering home goods, or the pet supply store that’s delivering dog food? Many small retail businesses don’t expect tips, Swann says, but now is a great time to show gratitude by posting a glowing review online.

“Not only should we be patronizing our businesses, but we should be putting forth an effort to highlight our positive experiences,” she says. “If they can get that virtual high-five during this time, that would be very helpful.”

5. Be cautious with cash

For online or phone orders, you’ll likely add the tip when you provide your credit card information. But what about cash tips at a time when we’re all trying to eliminate unnecessary physical contact?

“If you do have to tip in cash, to put [workers] at ease, put the cash in an envelope in advance,” Swann says. “One of the core values of etiquette is to make sure we’re doing everything we can to put others at ease.”

And of course, if cash changes hands, sanitize or wash your hands before and after the interaction and follow Centers for Disease Control guidelines for maintaining safe social distance.

6. Tip on the total, not the subtotal

It’s the perennial debate: Should you tip on the subtotal before tax, or the total after tax?

“Just tip on the whole thing,” Gottsman says. As essential workers gear up in masks and gloves and take extra precautions to deliver food and necessities so the rest of us can stay home, now isn’t the time to be stingy.

“Do those few pennies matter? I think they matter to that person [you’re tipping],” she says.

7. Consider tipping contractors, fitness instructors, and others who go above and beyond

You probably wouldn’t normally tip a plumber or electrician who comes into your home, but if you can afford it, it’s not a bad idea, Gottsman says.

“If they come out in the middle of the night or they come out all masked and covered up, you might offer to give them some extra gratuity,” she says. “More than likely they will take it. … They aren’t having the businesses they normally have.”

If your favorite trainer or fitness instructor offers free workout plans or streaming classes while gyms are closed, you may also want to send them a tip on Venmo or PayPal.

“If they’re not charging you but just doing it to keep you going, then why not go ahead and send them a little something?” Swann asks.

8. When in doubt, just do what you can

This is a tough financial time for many people. If tipping above and beyond your normal amount feels out of reach, don’t beat yourself up—just do what’s in your budget.

“The bottom line is, we give what we can afford at this time,” Gottsman says. “Some people are not impacted at all financially, and some people don’t have jobs. To say across the board that everyone should tip more would be unfair.”

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Source: realtor.com