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I love our white-and-black ceramic floor – except when I’m washing off the muddy paw prints for the third time in a day. Sure, mats and carpet runners help when we first bring in the dog from a walk and wipe off his paws. He patiently lifts up two of them for the wipe-down but then seems to say, “I’m outta here.” Perhaps he thinks he has two feet – not four paw…

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Federated Holland Garden Club will meet at 11 a.m. Wednesday in the Brink Memorial Community Center, Legion Drive, Holland. Following the business meeting and luncheon, members will discuss and plan for their 2017-2018 yearbook as well as the club’s May flower show. New members welcome. Call 537-9710. Cinderella Isle Garden Club will meet at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Trin…

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By now you’ve likely heard that Greenery – the yellow-green color named by Pantone as its Color of the Year – is expected to be big. But what other home decor trends are forecasters predicting for 2017? Here are just five that popped out at us: 1. Butterflies. Who doesn’t love butterflies? If trend-forecasters have it right, you can expect to see more butterf…

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Jan. 1, 2017: I did some gardening today, unexpectedly. The sun had come out, the ice dam on the roof was melting, the deck needed shoveling, and I wanted to get away from the computer. I intended to shovel a little bit, fill the bird feeders, and hang up a large suet-seed cake. How surprising then to find out all the other jobs my garden and landscape called me to do. It …

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Take a break from all your last-minute holiday preparations to take this short quiz on holiday plants and Christmas trees. It’s never too late to pick up some pointers and learn a few new things. (Answers at the bottom of this post. No cheating.)  True or false? 1. Today’s custom of the Christmas tree started in Germany in the 15th or 16th century. It was popula…

Home and Style

Technology has replaced -- and some might say improved -- the heart-warming spectacle of strings of twinkling Christmas lights strung along rooflines and window frames. A small projector stuck into the ground and focused on the house gives a similar star-spangled look to houses and trees. Sold under various names, including the original Star Shower Laser Light, the pro…

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Inquire about any piece of furniture, accessory or painting in the Bartolone home and Elizabeth Bartolone has a story about it. The low-post bed in the guest room? "That was my grandparents' bed when they were first married." The lineup of miniature buildings on top of the armoire in the living room? "Those are Russian churches. I've been there three times." T…

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The Bartolones' four-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath home in Amherst is a traditional center entrance, decorated elegantly for Christmas in ivory, silver and gold with pops of red. They bought the house four years ago, moving from a home in Williamsville. Here is a peek inside: The floor plan: Living room, dining room, family room, kitchen, sun room, laundry and half bath …

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Ever since I heard that Pantone named Greenery its 2017 Color of the Year, I've been seeing it around our house. I see it on the cap of our daughter's shampoo bottle. I see it on the linen tablecloth and napkins that have been in my family for many years. I see it mixed into the pattern on the cover of a Lilly Pulitzer book I own. It even comes pretty close to the color of…

Local News

WILSON -- Participants may get a glimpse of 1800s glory or marvel at new green energy-saving technology in a range of houses gussied up for the holidays during Wilson’s Holiday Tour of Homes Saturday, Dec. 10. The addresses this year include: A stately home at 182 Harbor St., once owned by Luther Wilson, community founder. Thought to be constructed prior to 1835,…

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When I think about velvet in the home, I think of the year I decided to sew emerald green velvet pillows for my mother for Christmas. I was in high school, had minimal sewing skills, but I thought it was just what my mother - and our living room - needed. During study halls, I would venture down to the Home Ec room and sew away. I don't recall much else about this ambitiou…

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I remember one December day some years back when I piled my daughter and aunt into the car and headed up to Lewiston for the annual holiday tour of homes. Yes, I had laundry waiting for me back home, shopping to do and a long list of errands to tackle. But still we went  - and had a lovely, memorable afternoon. Home tours are fun any time of the year, but at Christm…

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Whether you're hosting a Thanksgiving feast or a Christmas cocktail party, early planning not only smooths the way but also elevates your game. It enables you to better enjoy the adventure of holiday entertaining while adding memorable touches that make your guests feel extra special. It can help you stay calm, stick closer to budget, try out new decorating ideas and get t…

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The Niagara Frontier Orchid Society will hold its Fall Orchid Show at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. There will be orchid displays, growing demonstrations and orchid vendors. Your admission to the Gardens includes the Orchid Show. In addition, a seminar of national speakers …

Lifestyles

New York State tree lovers and plant industry professionals have a new reason to be proud: Draves Arboretum in Darien was recently accredited by the ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program, which was created by the Morton Arboretum and is the only international program that evaluates arboreta. Thanks to arborist and plantsman Tom Draves, Western New York can claim a destina…