De-Stressing Holiday Travel

fall road tripFor many people, the decision to hit the open road for a long road trip during the fall season can be a double-edged sword. As I mentioned before in my last post, there is typically less construction during the fall and the weather tends to be more bearable (as in the weather is not too hot – I’ll get into the reverse of this later on). On the other hand, there are quite a few drawbacks to traveling during the fall and winter months. Some of these include the likelihood of inclemently-cold weather and devastatingly brutal pre-holiday traffic in October and November – not to mention the typical issues you deal with on a road trip during any time of the year. For me, the best way to stay cool, calm and collected during a long road trip in the autumn season is to prepare ahead of time. I ensure all of the organizers and travel comfort items I need are packed away, a key to successful travel. Read more

Incorporating Fall Colors into your Home Decor Scheme

fall decorOf all the seasons, fall has the most distinct, recognizable color palette, by far. It also happens to be one of the most soothing and user-friendly color palettes, a cinch to incorporate into one or more rooms of the home.

Whether you are wanting to make long-term changes to your room’s decor scheme or just simply want to get in the mood for autumn and the upcoming holidays, I’ve got some great picks and ideas for you! Read more

Getting Into The Fall Spirit

cozy fall tableEvery time the season changes, I like to throw a party to celebrate it. Not necessarily on the actual date, but when it really starts to feel like that season. As we all know, winter tends to drag on, spring pushes itself as far as it can, and summer (especially this year) just can’t seem to let go. So right now I’m making plans for my “welcome” party for fall. And boy is it welcome! I am so ready for a change. Fall’s party is always really exciting for me because it’s my favorite season change. By this time, I’m sick of sunny days and warm weather. I’m tired of hearing that monotonous drone of the air conditioning unit. I don’t need another backyard barbeque! Read more

Tips For "Cozifying" Your Home

Tavola Cherry Electric Fireplace by Holly & MartinFall may have officially started already, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to prep your home for what’s to come: shorter days, cooler weather, and finding pleasure indoors. I have a word for this, and it is “cozify”. I just got started on cozifying my home, even though it still feels a little like summer. What I do is introduce cozy items to my surroundings like plush fabrics and pull out appliances like the slow cooker and electric tea kettle. To me there is nothing like a cup of hot tea, a comfy chair, a warm blanket and a good book on a rainy autumn day. Read more

Winterize Your Home – Part 2

mulcherNow that we’ve had our fun in the garden, it’s time to get serious about winterizing our homes.

But don’t worry, we’ll keep it simple.

We are not going to cover some of the more serious items, like pipes, as you may want to turn to a professional for those important items. Instead, we will focus on what the average person can do to get ready for winter. Read more

Give Your Guests The Spa Treatment

down comforterHave visitors coming to stay this holiday season? Give your guests, and yourself, an excuse to indulge with some decadent items for your home. By choosing items for the guestroom and guest bath that you can enjoy too you’ll get the most for your money and have a happy house guest.

On crisp fall days getting out of the bath to wrap up in a warm towel is a luxurious bathroom touch. The towel warmer is a convenient and portable way to keep towels toasty. Keep this warmer in your bathroom and then bring it in the guest bath filled with fresh bath linens so visitors can enjoy it too. This warmer is a great way to give any bathroom a spa like feel. Read more

My Fall Prep Plans

mama's mac and cheeseIt’s difficult to think fall when the weather doesn’t agree. Days this week have been in the upper 90’s and low 100’s here in Wine Country. But it’s still not deterring me from preparing my home and heart for the inevitable cool and wonderful fall weather that’s surely on its way.

Here are some of the things I’m doing this weekend to prepare myself and my home for fall: Read more

Decorate with Fall’s Bounty

decorating with fall leavesFall is such a great time to decorate, whether it’s just for the season or for expanding the long term decor plan in your home. Because of all the autumn beauty nature provides us at this time of year, it’s a cinch to get yourself in the fall-mood by simply looking at what is already around you. Here, we will focus solely on seasonal decorating, with the next post taking a look at what elements of fall you can incorporate into your home decor scheme to last a lifetime!

Fall Seasonal Decorating:

Pumpkins – Not just for carving or eating, pumpkins make great seasonal decorations inside and outside the home, and are a must-have at any fun fall get-together. Read more

Oars Up! Holiday Cooking Time is Rapidly Approaching

fall cookingFall is officially here, and the holidays are just around the corner! Do you have all the tools and gadgets you will need in the kitchen to whip up your favorite meals? Now is a great time to organize those cupboards and take stock of what you have and what you will need. If you keep a detailed list on hand, you can take advantage of those great grocery store sales as they pop up over the next few months.

Get Your Kitchen in Order Read more

Tips for a Fall Themed Party

fall dinner partyFall is one of my favorite times to entertain because you can draw so much inspiration from the natural surroundings. When planning a menu and decorating scheme for a fall bash, think about all the things we love about fall. The first thing that comes to mind? The changing of the leaves. Tree lined streets burst into vibrant flames of color and richness. The apples ripen and give us mouth watering tones of red and green. Pumpkin patches alongside the roadway create blocks of luscious orange. We trade in our bright, floral summer dresses for cozy sweaters in charcoal and chocolate colored knits. Read more

Cozy Thoughts of Fall

cozy fall afternoonEvery year around this time, I start falling in love with fall. As the festivities of the action-packed summer come to a close, I move inward and one word describes everyday… cozy. What is cozy? To me, cozy happens when all the senses are in tune with something comforting. A warm blanket to snuggle up in, a scented candle that evokes the upcoming holidays, warm and hearty home cooked meals. The refreshing iced tea of summer becomes hot, steeping pots of herbal blends that soothe the senses. Playful afternoons in the sunshine turn into drizzly craft days, movie days, and days where any kind of indoor indulgence is acceptable. The sun sets a little earlier everyday to remind us that this is the time to nest. Read more

My Fall List of Cozy Cooking

fall cookingFall is officially here, just in time to dust off those old holiday cooking recipes that will get us through to the New Year! But instead of jumping right into the Christmas season prematurely like so many big chain stores do these days, let’s not forget to savor some of fall’s favorite activities, many of which happen to involve cooking. I like to think of Autumn as the time that we essentially kick-off the cozy season, so here is my official list of things to experience and enjoy during the Fall via your taste buds. Read more

Stop House-Guest Overwhelm

welcome house guestsWith so many holidays, fall is the perfect time to visit with friends and family. While it can be fun to catch up, having a house guest at such a busy time of year can sometimes seem like a lot to handle. Don’t get overwhelmed with everything going on. A little planning ahead can help make sure you have plenty of time to spend with guests and don’t waste any time worrying about whether or not they’re being taken care of. Read more

Summer Clothes Storage 101

summer clothes storageOne of the most well-known and oft-recited laws in the world of fashion is, “Never wear white after Labor Day”. Of course, this strict rule of thumb begs the question: Where does one keep all of those white garments during the fall and the winter?

While some fashionistas are blessed with walk-in closets that provide ample amounts of space to store your off-season outfits, the vast majority of us have to make do with what we have and find a way to squeeze those out-of-season duds into what available space we have left. Read more

Winterize your Home – Part 1

winterize your gardenWinterizing your home, whether you rent or own, is as important (if not more so) than spring cleaning. As we all know, winter storms in any part of the country can cause damage to the home, and frankly much of it is preventable with the right plan of action. However, since fall has just begun, I thought it would be nice to ease into things, starting with what I think of as “the fun stuff” when it comes to taking care of the home in preparation for winter.

So let’s just start in my favorite place, the garden! Read more

Taking The Stress Out Of Fall Travel

fall travelAs we approach the crisp, fresh days of fall and escape the sweltering sweatbox that is summertime, I know that I suddenly find myself looking to capitalize on my personal favorite season.

There are many ways to enjoy the fall – from apple-picking to cheering on my favorite college football team. There is something about the freshness in the air that makes fall the number one season for me. Read more