2014 colour of the year is bloomin’ baffling

Oh, my aching eyes. I’ve been spending some time studying Pantone’s 2014 colour of the year, “Radiant Orchid.” So what’s a radiant orchid? The big, frilly kind your granny might have worn as a corsage. It’s a sort of purple, but it‘s bluer than a true purple, and it’s pinker than lavender. But it’s more […]

Home is where the art is

Art has been with us, well, as long as humans have been humans. Think of the vivid cave paintings found around the world… the still-fascinating wall paintings of Egypt … New World pre-Columbian art … aboriginal art of North America, Africa and the South Pacific. Not to mention the masters of the Middle Ages, the […]

Give your home a fall tune-up

Like it or not (and I don’t), I have to admit signs of autumn are pushing their way in. I need a hard hat, so many acorns are cracking down on the patio. Kids are giggling by on their way to school. Breezes are moving in from the north. And, inexorably, the sun is rising […]

Seven steps to a successful move

The busybodies who keep track of such things say that moving is one of life’s most stressful events. It can sure seem that way on the day itself and the weeks leading up to it. And we’re heading into prime time. “Peak moving season is in late June or early July, though typically the cycle […]

Fall for autumn, indoors and outdoors

Autumn is the bridge season between the heat, light and noise of summer and the chill, dark silence of winter. It’s time to put away our outdoor lifestyle with its happy summer banners and colourful flowering plants. We move at a more thoughtful pace in the fall, celebrating the harvest, the autumn light, earth colours […]

Have a summer fling with colour

You’ve shed your winter coat, cleaned your boots and shoved them to the back of the closet and brought out your brightest crayon-coloured sneakers and T-shirts. Isn’t it time to give your home a summer fashion face-lift, too? In winter, we want to huddle and hibernate, wrap ourselves in cosy warmth and shut out the […]

Home and garden shows combine forces

You may as well bring a sleeping bag – there’s so much home and garden stuff going on in March, you won’t want to waste time going home. This year, two mega-shows – Canada Blooms and the National Home Show – are combining to create North America’s biggest home-plus-garden showcase. The shows run simultaneously for […]

Beachy-keen gift ideas for Christmas

Dear Santa, I figure you must have a pretty hard time finding all those presents for everyone, so I thought I’d help you out. Here are some things I especially like because they’re quick, easy and inexpensive. And you can find many of them right here in the Beach. Calendars There are lots of fancy […]

Even old houses can turn green

Renovating an old house is bad enough. Renovating an old house to be as environmentally-friendly as possible – well, that’s a giant job. But that’s what Beacher Keely Kemp decided to do when she bought a 1917 fixer-upper some three years ago. The house had been vacant for several years, and had been in the […]

An accolade to awesome Beach porches

One of the very best things about the Beach is all the front porches in our neighbourhood. I fell in love with porches decades ago, playing with my cousins in the rain on their front porch in the tiny Midwestern U.S. town where my dad—and I—were born. I was a suburban Texas kid by that […]