A-List Party Guru Shares Holiday Hosting Secrets

January 2, 2018 The holiday party is tomorrow. I’m hosting. My friends think I’m nuts. “Are you sure?” they asked, giving me both a sanity check and a way out. I’d offered to host the dinner party for the book club ladies and their husbands knowing that I would only be in my new house […]

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10 Ways to Paint Like a Pro

December 11, 2017 In a recent interview, novelist Anne Tyler answered a question about whether she ever reread her own books by replying that doing so “always feels like lying awake in a bedroom I’ve painted myself. The mistakes are so noticeable and so upsetting.” I can relate. When I look back on my past […]

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How Not to to Pick a Painter

December 4, 2017 “Please call me in 30 minutes,” I am talking on the phone with my daughter. “If I don’t answer, call the police.”  “Now what did you do?” She is used to this. “I am being followed by a man I just met at the paint store,” I explain. “We are going to […]

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Find Your Creative Eye When Decorating New Place

November 27, 2017 “You look like you’re pondering,” DC says to me the other night. I am staring into space wearing an expression so serious he must think I’m single handedly solving the health-care crisis. “I’m thinking about how to treat the handrails on the staircase,” I wonder aloud. “Should we paint or replace them?” […]

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How to Handle a Closing Day Surprise

November 20, 2017 You’ve made it this far. You’ve negotiated the price, had the home inspected, gotten your loan approved, and the house sale is heading for the corner pocket. Nothing else can go wrong, right? I had to wait a week for the steam to stop coming out of my ears before I could […]

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Wood Floors: Find Your Forever Look

November 6, 2017 “As long as we’re …” I am talking to DC over dinner about work we’d like – or more accurately, I’d like — done on our new house before we move in. He pauses, fork in midair. He knows that those words — as long as we’re – are the four most […]

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Floored by the Choice: Carpet or Wood?

October 31, 2017 When I first walked into the downstairs master bedroom of the house DC and I are buying, I said, as if stating something as obvious as fish need water: “We’d have to change the carpet in here to hardwood.” “Why? The carpet isn’t bad,” DC says. I look at him as if […]

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How to Handle a Home Inspection Hiccup

October 26, 2017 “We accepted an offer on our house,” I tell my colleague. “Already?” she says. I shrug. “It took 18 days. I was trying to beat my record of one day.” “We did have a hurricane,” she reminds me, then adds, “You don’t seem very excited.” “Not till it’s over,” I say wearily. […]

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