Theme Your Cookout to Maximize Memorial Day

After you call, visit or #memorialize your favorite #veteran(s) on Memorial Day, a cookout is the perfect way to launch the summer with family and friends. To make it truly memorable, give your gathering a festive theme, The Spruce suggests. Good menu options include Southern barbecue, craft-beer tasting, hot dog/burger bar, and (for maximum potluck potential) “You bring it, we grill it.” Add some outdoor games such as cornhole, croquet or badminton to work off those cookout calories, and let the summer fun begin! #MemorialDay

Celebrate the Start of Summer

The unofficial start to #summer, Memorial Day is ideal for a family activity, even if it’s just a short road trip or staycation. Celebrate those who gave their lives for the country by paying your respects at a cemetery, flying the flag, and making red-white-and-blue treats for a picnic or cookout, Country Living suggests. Parades are another great option, as are quick jaunts to a beach, park or nature preserve. It was a long and likely stressful winter, so take advantage of the extended weekend and — as Grandma used to say — go get some air in your fur. #MemorialDay

Shopping the Memorial Day Sales?

Like so many American holidays, Memorial Day is a great day to shop for deals on big-ticket items such as automobiles, mattresses and furniture. While we at The Organizing Blog would rather be eating hot dogs and barbecue beans, #cleaning the #garage and playing a round of bags, we won’t judge if you shop the long-weekend sales on furniture, outdoor gear and other products. Just remember the cardinal rule of #decluttering when you take delivery: To keep your amount of #stuff from getting unmanageable, get rid of one similar item (or two) for every new item you bring into your home. #MemorialDay

Honoring Veterans on Memorial Day

Established to honor those who lost their lives in service to the country, Memorial Day is a great time to honor living #veterans, too. Good Housekeeping suggests spending some of your long weekend shopping at a veteran-owned business or streaming one of the Storycorps oral histories presented by active-duty military members and veterans. You can also #donate to the #Vietnam Veterans of America and ClothingDonations.org, Building Homes for Heroes, and other nonprofits that help U.S. military veterans access food, housing, health care and other necessities every day of the year. #MemorialDay

Keep Pets Safe on Memorial Day Weekend

Traveling with pets this Memorial Day? Keep them safe by keeping them on a leash, securing doors and gates, and making sure they are wearing proper identification and are microchipped, says the Imperial Valley Press. Provide them with plenty of fresh water and shade to fend off dehydration, and apply a pet-friendly flea and tick repellant to their fur when outdoors. Go easy on the table scraps, and set aside a quiet zone where your pet can get away from all of the human hubbub when they need some space and rest. #MemorialDayTips