Trekking Taos – Adventure to Taos, New Mexico
Jan08

Trekking Taos – Adventure to Taos, New Mexico

By Annette Brooks     My first time in Taos, New Mexico, was a whirlwind affair.   I thought a one night stay added to a Santa Fe vacation would be fine, but it wasn’t nearly enough. The Taos community has a one-of-a-kind laid back vibe along with a storied, proud history, multiple cultures living side by side, and a heritage of colorful people. The area also offers a rich array of activities for outdoor enthusiasts—and you’ll find...

Read More
Matters of the Mind – Brain Building Activities
Jan07

Matters of the Mind – Brain Building Activities

Brain-building activities that’ll keep you sharp and focused By Mimi Greenwood Knight   We’ve all stumbled when reaching for a stray thought— a song we heard the other day, what we had for dinner, where we set the keys… and perhaps with increasing frequency as we get older. But research seems to show that performing regular, targeted brain exercises can increase the brain’s cognitive reserve and lessen the effects of age on our...

Read More
Don’t Stress – Five Great Ways to Chill Out
Jan07

Don’t Stress – Five Great Ways to Chill Out

If you feel stressed after a day at the office—or even just a busy one at home—you’re not alone. A recent study found that about 8 in 10 employed Americans felt stressed about their work. If you’re like most people, your instinct might be to pull up social media or flip on the TV, but depending on the day’s developments, that might even make things worse. Forget tech and media for a while and focus on yourself with a few of these...

Read More
Recipes to Keep You Fueled and Focused
Jan07

Recipes to Keep You Fueled and Focused

Recipes and photos by Meghan Yager   When it comes to starting the New Year off on the right foot, you have to focus on the first meal of each day. Whether you prefer a grab-and-go smoothie, a big bowl of warm overnight oats, or a handheld egg sandwich, we’ve got some ideas that’ll keep you fueled and focused all morning long.       Freezer Frittata Sandwiches Makes: 6 Sandwiches | Time: 55 minutes Ingredients: 1 tablespoon olive oil...

Read More
Dwelling in Dallas – Renovated Residence in Greenway Parks, Dallas, Texas
Jan07

Dwelling in Dallas – Renovated Residence in Greenway Parks, Dallas, Texas

  Classic Meets Modern The careful design illustrates how contemporary architecture can still flourish in a National Historic Landmark neighborhood.     Lived In The home needed to be friendly for a busy family with active children, so the materials used are both simple and durable.           Nice at Night Situated on a constrictive lot in the Greenway Parks neighborhood of Dallas, this Waneta Street renovation had to stick within the...

Read More
Rethink and Repurpose – New Approaches For Lesser-Used Rooms
Jan07

Rethink and Repurpose – New Approaches For Lesser-Used Rooms

New Approaches For Lesser-used Rooms By Annette Brooks   With the arrival of the new year and the departure of any lingering houseguests, now is an ideal time to rethink how you’re using your home—and you might have some good data if you recently hosted visitors. Release yourself from traditional notions about how rooms and space ought to be used and focus on enriching your life with the things you enjoy and love doing most. Maybe the...

Read More
Practicing Gratitude – How Being Thankful Can Actually Improve Your Health
Dec10

Practicing Gratitude – How Being Thankful Can Actually Improve Your Health

By Mimi Greenwood Knight   “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” — Marcus Tullius Cicero         We all enjoy being around people who are naturally grateful. And most of us try to cultivate an attitude of gratitude in ourselves. But did you realize there’s a connection between being grateful and your mental and physical health?   “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though...

Read More
Stoneham Harmony – Featured Home Design by PARKA
Dec10

Stoneham Harmony – Featured Home Design by PARKA

    FULL EXTERIOR Natural wood and black slate on this house newly built for a young, dynamic family contrast with the white volume of the house, blending with the snowy surroundings in winter and contrasting with the bright greens and vibrant colors in summer and fall.     PATIO Designed for all-season use, the exterior spaces are creatively shielded from rain and snow while being open and accessible to the backyard pool.      ...

Read More
All I Want For Christmas is Food
Dec10

All I Want For Christmas is Food

Photos and recipes by Meghan YAGER   ‘Tis the season for spending time with family, and one of the best places to make memories is the kitchen! This month, with mugs of slow cooker hot chocolate in hand, bring the gratitude and holiday feelings to life by baking classic gingerbread cookies and a seasonal eggnog pull apart loaf.   Pull Apart Eggnog Loaf WITH CREAM CHEESE FROSTING   Serves: 4 to 6 | Time: 55 minutes   for the dough: 2...

Read More
Christmas in the city of a Hundred Spires – Christmas in Prague
Dec10

Christmas in the city of a Hundred Spires – Christmas in Prague

  By Annette Brooks   Prague shines brilliantly among Central Europe’s glittering jewels of art, culture, and architecture in any season, but during Christmastime, the city is sheer magic, transforming into a festive winter wonderland. And if you’re lucky enough to find it blanketed in sparkling snow, its romantic charms will dazzle you.           Old Town Square is the main place to be and to see in Prague. Covering around a quarter...

Read More
Fighting the Feisty Flu – Three Ways to Fight the Flu and Stay Healthy
Dec10

Fighting the Feisty Flu – Three Ways to Fight the Flu and Stay Healthy

    3 Ways to Keep it at Bay and Stay Healthy By David Buice   Flu season is upon us. While it’s possible to contract influenza (the flu) any time, the number of flu cases often increases during October and peaks between December and February, though widespread activity can continue as late as May. There’s no way to make yourself “bullet proof” against the flu, but there are steps you can take to reduce the chances of getting it or...

Read More
Gatherings & Gratitude – Encouragement for hosting your first Thanksgiving
Nov01

Gatherings & Gratitude – Encouragement for hosting your first Thanksgiving

  Encouragement for hosting your first Thanksgiving By Lisa Jenkins-Moore   Sandwiched between the gore of Halloween and the glory of Christmas is a holiday we should take time to savor—Thanksgiving. With so much to give thanks for and the opportunity to gather with friends and family for good food and fellowship, Thanksgiving is to be cherished. If you have the honor of hosting  the celebration in your home this year, consider the...

Read More
Seasonal Soak – Our recipes for the perfect holiday bath
Nov01

Seasonal Soak – Our recipes for the perfect holiday bath

Our recipes for the perfect holiday bath By Mimi Greenwood Knight The holidays— whether they’ve yet to actually take place or have recently passed—can wear you down like few other times of year. Amid all the hubbub, it can be super helpful to take an hour or two to slip away, unplug, and revive your spirit with a long, soul-reviving bath.   Starter Pack   Ideal Bath Basics Temperature: 92 degrees Fahrenheit Length: 20 to 30 minutes...

Read More
Fall in Nova Scotia
Oct31

Fall in Nova Scotia

Falling for Atlantic Canada By Annette Brooks       The lyrics from “You’re So Vain” kept replaying in my head as we sped northward, trying to make it to St. John, New Brunswick before the ferry to Digby, Nova Scotia departed. Listening to Carly Simon’s 1972 hit back in the day initially ignited my curiosity about Nova Scotia (Then you flew your Learjet up to Nova Scotia/To see the total eclipse of the sun), and it stayed with me over...

Read More
Empty Nest
Oct31

Empty Nest

    By Mimi Greenwood Knight   How to adjust when it’s time for them to leave Something happens to me each day at about three in the afternoon. I suddenly panic, thinking I forgot to pick the kids up from school. Then I realize “the kids” are down to one and that beautiful boy got his license and car this summer. He’s not waiting for me in the school carline. He’s pulling out of the parking lot with a cute blonde in the passenger seat...

Read More
An Autumn Assortment
Oct31

An Autumn Assortment

TIPS & TRICKS These three recipes make for a great three-course dinner for your next gathering! All the recipes come together in a little over two hours of cooking time, plus dessert can cook while you eat the main course.     Pumpkin Sage Fettuccine Alfredo Serves: 4 Time: 30 minutes   1 pound fettuccine 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 tablespoons flour 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 garlic cloves, minced 4 cups low-fat milk 2...

Read More
Life Among the Mountains
Oct31

Life Among the Mountains

  Lodgepole Retreat, near Allenspark, Colorado   PROJECT BY AND COURTESY OF Arch11 Photos by Raul Garcia BUILT by J.A. LONG CONSTRUCTION COMPANY About the architects: Founded in 1993, Arch11 is recognized for precision, craft, and a modern sensibility that anchors buildings to their sites, heightening the experience of materials and place. They design solutions specific to place, purpose, and client, and are continuous learners,...

Read More
Celebrate Autumn In Asheville
Oct24

Celebrate Autumn In Asheville

As the dog days of summer wane, autumn beckons to us all. You can almost feel the crisp air, smell the wonderful fall aromas, and visualize foliage so vibrant you want to reach out and touch it. That’s when it’s time to head to Asheville, North Carolina. Each year, autumn-loving visitors from around the world slip into town to drink in the splendor of the Blue Ridge Mountains ablaze with color, fill their hearts with laughter and joy...

Read More
A House in the Woods
Oct05

A House in the Woods

  UPDATED EXTERIOR This mid-century original underwent a comprehensive renovation for its new owners, both to respect the home’s roots and reflect the owners’ aesthetic and lifestyle. Every inch of the space, interior and exterior, was redone.     CUSTOM Kitchen The entry wall wraps to form the interior custom walnut cabinetry inside, both at the entry gallery and into the kitchen, part of an open concept living space.   LAID-Back...

Read More
Dealing With the Stress of Unexpected Changes
Oct02

Dealing With the Stress of Unexpected Changes

By Mimi Greenwood Knight         You’ve undergone life changes you didn’t sign up for or expect. But here you are. When it happened to our family, we made a lot of mistakes. But we also learned some strategies that helped, and continue to help, as we move forward. On November 6, 2014, our home phone rang at 3:00 in the morning and life for our family was never the same. An hour before, our dynamic, world-moving daughter had a freak...

Read More
Pumpkins & an Irishman Called Jack
Oct02

Pumpkins & an Irishman Called Jack

The carved pumpkin, otherwise known as a jack-o-lantern, is an established part of our Halloween traditions, but where did that practice come from? Why do we carve pumpkins at Halloween? The answer lies buried deep in the myths and traditions of ancient Ireland. One version of the tale says that a fellow named Jack once chased the devil up a tree. Then he made a deal: He would let the devil come down from the tree if the devil...

Read More
Cozy Sunday Cooking
Oct02

Cozy Sunday Cooking

Recipes and photos By Meghan Bassett The seasons are changing and a cold breeze will be heading our way in no time. Cozy up to a weekend bowl of creamy pumpkin soup, or heat things for sports with spicy chicken tortilla soup. You can even pair them with a slice of homemade no-rise bacon and sage bread. All recipes serve from 6 to 8 people.     Creamy PUMPKIN SOUP INGREDIENTS 3 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 small white onion, chopped 2...

Read More
Rightsizing Your Residence
Oct02

Rightsizing Your Residence

Is the home you bought still the home that fits? By Annette Brooks     Once the kids have left home, what’s the point of hanging on to a big house? The extra bedrooms are probably seldom used, except for an occasional overnight stay. And if you were a younger, kid-free couple when you bought your smaller place and a little time has passed, maybe you’re wondering whether it’s still such a good fit. Instead of sinking money into a place...

Read More
Renewed Spirit
Oct02

Renewed Spirit

Travel destinations that’ll leave you uplifted for whatever life changes come your way By Annette Brooks In a hectic, tumultuous world, finding a place on earth that instills wonderment, if only for a few moments, makes an impression that lasts a lifetime. Spirit-renewing experiences are deeply personal and often happen serendipitously as you explore new destinations. A singularly still moment while touring San Antonio’s Spanish...

Read More
Fair State – One of Mind, Body and Fried Foods
Sep06

Fair State – One of Mind, Body and Fried Foods

Proclaimeth the operators of the State Fair of Texas: “Since 2005, the Big Tex Choice Awards contest has solidified the State Fair of Texas as the top fair for great food creations.” Clutch your hand to your chest gingerly and think of your arteries, dear reader, cause that’s not all a decade of fried delights have solidified. The question, of course, is whether we’d have it any other way.   It is now a Texas tradition, and...

Read More
Weird Texas
Sep05

Weird Texas

Things you’ve never seen—just outside your front door In addition to its well known wide-open ranges, rolling vineyard-filled hills, and action-packed theme parks, Texas has its share of odd destinations—really odd destinations. From kitschy roadside attractions to towns devoted to beloved rodents to alien gravesites, Texas truly has it all. Cadillac Ranch Amarillo When people think of Texas oddities, it’s possible that they first...

Read More
Updating A Houston Classic
Sep04

Updating A Houston Classic

  About the Designer: Founded in 1991 by principal Jay Baker, Jay Baker Architects is Houston’s premier residential architecture firm known for harmonizing form and function. For more than 25 years, the firm has designed new homes, renovations, and additions throughout Houston and Southeast Texas, leaving an indelible mark on the architectural tapestry of the region. The firm has committed itself to providing a uniquely engaging and...

Read More
Celebrating Our Style Icons
Sep04

Celebrating Our Style Icons

What Would Make Your List? Texas has embraced and nurtured an attitude and style all its own from the very beginning. Not surprisingly, when it comes to fashion, design, and tastemakers, natives of the Lone Star state make an impact. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite style icons to highlight in our edition that celebrates everything Texas. Tom Ford When it comes to world-renowned fashion designers, many would agree that...

Read More
Finding Home
Aug30

Finding Home

A young artist returns to Texas By Audrey Ashe   There’s an old saying, “You can take the girl out of Texas, but you can’t take Texas out of the girl.” Years ago, I would’ve rolled my eyes at this. I still may, but perhaps with a little more whimsy. As a child who grew up in rural Texas just north of Dallas, I have memories as far back as I can remember of distinctly not wanting to be in Texas. Being a decidedly shy kid who was much...

Read More
Be the Hero of Your Grill This Summer
Jun20

Be the Hero of Your Grill This Summer

Nothing brings people together like a barbecue. There seems to be something about being outdoors and the sizzle of fresh food on the grill that makes you want to gather with family and friends. This summer, you can be the hero of your grill with a few simple tips and tricks: A great meal starts with great meat. Make sure to use versatile, high-quality and tender cuts like Smithfield Fresh Pork ribs, chops and tenderloins. Cut down on...

Read More
Summer Learning Activities for Kids
Jun20

Summer Learning Activities for Kids

Summer may be a break from formal education, but keeping kids excited about learning can be an easy way to keep them active and engaged instead of zoned out on screen time. The National Summer Learning Association estimates that kids can lose up to two months of learning during the summer but involving kids in educational summer activities can prevent them from forgetting skills they learned during the school year. Encourage your kids...

Read More
Austin Hotel Restaurants to Remember
May30

Austin Hotel Restaurants to Remember

Whether you are traveling on business, enjoying a romantic weekend getaway, or simply looking for a new place to overnight, these fantastic Austin hotels offer more than just a comfortable room. In-hotel restaurants have in times past been thought of as simply convenient, but sometimes the best fare in the neighborhood is right where you’re staying. In fact, locals frequent and recommend these fabulous Austin hotel eateries below,...

Read More
A Deserved Day for Dad
May14

A Deserved Day for Dad

Whether dad wants to spend his day on the patio, in the garage, on the couch or at a ballgame, Father’s Day is the perfect opportunity to celebrate everything that makes him special to you and your family. Since each dad is a little different, it’s sometimes tough finding just the right gift to put a smile on his face. Whether he’s into a grilled meal, a clean deck or a quality shave, these products are ideal for all types of fathers....

Read More
Rejuvenated Real Estate
May09

Rejuvenated Real Estate

From May baskets and Cinco de Mayo to Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, the month of May has a lot going on. It also happens to be one of the best months to buy a house. Beautiful spring weather—especially before the summer heat and humidity hits in full force—means it’s a better time for house hunting. And of course, new listings begin to pop up like Texas wildflowers. The birds are chirping, the leaves and grass are green, and sunshine...

Read More
A Piece of Spring
May09

A Piece of Spring

A spring swimsuit is a versatile thing, whether matched with a breezy cover up, the rest of an outfit, or worn solo. We’re not quite into the depths of summer yet, but the Texas sun is more than sufficient for an early season splash. Gibson & Latimer – Pique Stripe Plunge $82 La Blanca – Vision Quest Plunge Cross Back Tummy Toner $119 Gossip-Jean’s Addiction Ruffle Off-the-Shoulder $70 Kenneth Cole Reaction-Over the...

Read More
Global Gastronomy
May09

Global Gastronomy

Incorporating the flavors of Asian cuisine in your own kitchen can be a little intimidating at first. But this month we’ll help you discover how to reinterpret a few everyday dishes with some unique twists that you and your family will love. Whether you are hosting a party or planning an easy weeknight meal, we hope we can open your eyes to a whole new world of flavor. Banh Mi Noodles 1 pound ground pork 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled...

Read More
Shoreline & Seafood
May09

Shoreline & Seafood

Eight hours was a long drive, but just doable enough to get through with some sanity intact. That’s one perk of living in northern New Jersey—New England is only a day’s drive away. It was the summer of 2017, and my mom and I were headed out on a road trip to Maine. A big part of our expedition was an impending “mother-daughter lobster crawl.” My mom, of course, was ecstatic over our little escapade. Had I been younger, I probably...

Read More
DNA Demystified
May09

DNA Demystified

Genetic testing involves examining your DNA—the chemical database that carries instructions for your body’s functions—and can reveal changes (mutations) in your genes that may, or may not, cause diseases. The chances of you or your children inheriting some genetic mutation depends on a variety of factors including your parents’ genes, your genes, the disease itself, and mathematical odds. Why test? Genetic testing plays a vital role...

Read More
A Camping We Will Go
Apr11

A Camping We Will Go

The weather is changing and the great outdoors are calling! Take your cooking outside this spring with these easy-to-make (and even easier to eat) recipes that taste better when cooked over the hot flames. The only other things you need are the stars. All recipes serve 4. Campfire Sausage and Vegetables 2 links of smoked turkey sausage, cut into rounds 1 red bell pepper, sliced 1 green bell pepper, sliced 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced...

Read More
Lake House Life
Apr11

Lake House Life

Many families in Michigan share a tradition of spending weekends and vacations in cottages adjacent to the state’s collection of lakes. Higgins Lake is considered one of the most spectacular of the inland lakes, and the empty-nesters who commissioned this cottage wanted to be able to share this resource with their large family and many friends. In order to host plenty of guests, the owners requested a large gathering area for cooking,...

Read More
Wear and Tear
Apr11

Wear and Tear

Watching out for common outdoor injuries as you get back to nature this spring. It’s already April, and many of us who have largely hibernated during the winter are again venturing outside to engage in our favorite forms of exercise and recreation. Unfortunately, no matter what you’re up to, there’s always the risk of injury. Fortunately, a little awareness can help keep you both active and injury free. As we all get outdoors this...

Read More
Texas Bluebonnets Beckon
Mar13

Texas Bluebonnets Beckon

The sights of springtime draw near Few things represent spring in Texas more than bluebonnets. Blanketing fields and roadsides in sheets of blue, their showy display inspires a deep appreciation for the sheer beauty of nature and the Texas countryside. Although the Texas state flower appears in many areas, especially throughout the Hill Country, ask anyone about the best location to view them and you will likely get different answers....

Read More
Perfectly Perched
Mar13

Perfectly Perched

The approximately 2,580 square foot Perch Haus rests in the heart of East Dallas on the shore of White Rock Lake, bordering the popular 9-mile trail that encircles it. A grand “vanishing point” entry stair opens itself up to guests, leading to a steel-tiered landscape and a front door roughly 12 feet above street level. The pronounced second floor cantilever commands the attention of the hundreds of cyclists and runners that pass by...

Read More
Power Bowls
Mar13

Power Bowls

Get bowled over with nutritious meals! Eating healthy in the spring doesn’t mean that things have to be flavorless! Get your fill from a single bowl packed with protein, veggies, and grains that’s easy to make, easy to eat, and easy to clean up. Each recipe makes two bowls. Tips & Tricks You can easily make these bowls ahead of time at the start of the week to make your lunches for the week! Each recipe makes two servings so they...

Read More
Splitting Hairs
Mar13

Splitting Hairs

Opened in 2003 and bursting with old Hollywood glamour, fainting couches, chandeliers in every room, original wood floors, and passionate people, Renata Salons is an old-time full-service salon with cutting edge style. Owner Lauren Jackson traveled the country training stylists and working fashion week events for years before returning to Texas to run the salon with her mom and co-owner, Sherry. She also reconnected and fell in love...

Read More
Saguaro Oasis
Feb06

Saguaro Oasis

A desert vacation home for four generations of family From the outset, this private residence in Scottsdale, Arizona was sure to be a unique one. Paramount were the applications of visually taking in the nearby mountain ridge to frame the vastness of the views, and providing comfort in shade from the sun. The central common space extends and connects to the exterior, blurring the definition of what’s inside and what’s outside. “It is...

Read More
Love it and List it (…or not)
Feb06

Love it and List it (…or not)

Getting your home ready to show—even if you’re the only one looking “Are you getting ready to sell your place?” More than one neighbor asked me this when my home’s hardwood floors were being refinished and the interior painted. The truth was that I simply wanted to care for the place I call home. Too often we wait until we’re thinking of selling to give a little TLC to our frequently-neglected abodes, only to be struck with a pang of...

Read More
Cooking for Comfort
Feb06

Cooking for Comfort

Whether it’s to a sick loved one or a friend living across the country, send your love with comforting recipes everyone will swoon over. You know the smile will be from ear-to-ear when the recipient opens this box of goodness. Harvest Bread 3 cups all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons salt ½ teaspoon sugar ¾ teaspoon instant yeast 1½ cups + 2 tablespoons room temperature water Add flour, salt, yeast and sugar to a large bowl. Whisk together...

Read More
The Big Day
Feb06

The Big Day

“Isn’t this the most romantic time of your life?” “Aren’t you having SO MUCH FUN?!” If you’re engaged, you’ve probably heard this stuff from friends and family. And if you’re like me, you feel as though your response should be an overwhelming “OMG YES,” even when your caterer won’t return your calls, half your family isn’t speaking to each other, the seating chart is a disaster, and your guest list thinks RSVPs are a suggestion. The...

Read More
Into the Blue
Jan03

Into the Blue

The sea plays a focal role in Ashley Maddox’s home in Cape Town—and not only because it features a 180-degree view of the ocean. Each of the upstairs rooms has been painted to match the spectrum of blues and greens seen in the sea. “When we bought the house, it was all white everywhere—very stark with big, white, shabby-chic couches. You can create so much personality just with color,” says Ashley. The cerulean shade in the couple’s...

Read More