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Life 399 Stories

With the air turning crisp, leaves falling and farmer’s markets overflowing with squash, gourds, apples and potatoes, October is a time to celebrate the harvest — and button up the home and garden for the winter ahead. From raking leaves to sharpening knives, see which of these 13 to-dos make your list this month.
4 Obstacles to Decluttering — and How to Beat Them
My husband and I began dating when we were still children. He was 16 and I was 15, back in the olden days when people still talked on the phone and wrote letters. By the time we got married and had three kids, we had almost 20 years of correspondence....
14 Things You Need to Start Doing Now for Your Spouse’s Sake
OK, nobody’s perfect. But seriously, you really need to start putting a new roll of toilet paper on the spindle when it’s out. And you definitely need to start closing the toilet lid, like, 10 years ago. Oh, and I’m pretty sure someone has...
Chore Time: How to Work Better as a Family
Years and years ago, one Saturday morning in spring, my husband, Paul, and I had an impromptu discussion. In truth it was an argument, but since we were in the front yard, in the sight of God, our neighbors and anyone who happened...
Making a Home Away From Home
If you’ve ever made a big move, whether to a different state or a different country, you are probably familiar with that uprooted feeling that comes along with leaving everything known for something different and new. It can be exciting but also...
Simple Pleasures: Your Home Is Your Château
Savoring a good life should start at home, but it’s easy to get stuck in the trap of thinking our homes are not grand enough, clean enough or beautiful enough to celebrate them as they are. In her recently published book, At...
Pet-Friendly Design: Making Room for the Dog Dish
When I say there is nothing quite so unpleasant as stepping in a dog’s water dish, I speak from experience (no thanks, Augie). Like a good pet owner, I keep my pup’s water bowl filled with fresh water. It’s located in the kitchen, where I inevitably...
You Said It: ‘Every Centimeter Counts’ and Other Houzz Quotables
Houzzers, Halloween is a week away — have you bought the candy yet? I haven’t, because in spite of the fact that I make the tiniest hole in the bag, before the big night it all seems to fall out, unwrap itself and land in my belly somehow, and then...
Simple Pleasures: Preserving Analog Memories in a Digital World
Before switching to a digital camera, I remember getting photos printed regularly and enjoying time spent flipping through the albums stored on my shelves. But I also remember feeling positively joyful when I switched to a digital camera. Hooray...
You Said It: ‘Change Is Good’ and Other Houzz Quotables
It was due — a You Said It column rounding up quotes, tips and advice grabbed from the Comments sections of stories. Taking several hours to read through those sections was a refreshing way to get my creative juices flowing — a topic readers explored...
You Said It: ‘Enjoy Your Own Private Symphony’ and More Houzz Quotables
Though I look forward to cooler temperatures and lighting the fire on fall and winter nights, I dread nights where it’s pitch black out by early evening. To turn that dread into something more positive, I think about what I can do to combat it. Houzz...
You Said It: ‘Rather Than Remove Them, They Framed Them’
Several interior designers I interviewed this week brought up storytelling as a big part of what they do. It got me thinking about the stories we tell via our homes, through objects we place inside and out. All of our homes have stories to tell, and those...
15 Questions to Ask When Interviewing a Real Estate Agent
Selling your home is a big deal — so while it may be tempting to go with the first word-of-mouth recommendation you get, when it comes to choosing a real estate agent, it pays to do a bit more research. Your real estate pro will be responsible for setting...
Curl Up With Some Dreamworthy Nap Spots
Did you know that September 29 marks the start of Sleep Awareness Week in Australia? (It comes along in March in the U.S.) If not, there’s no...