Top trends: Designer reveals what’s hot in kitchen renovations

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Courtesy of Viscusi Elson Interior Design & Rutt Kitchens
A white kitchen provides a neutral backdrop for both bright and subtle colors and earth tones, said Gina Viscusi Elson, owner of Viscusi Elson Interior Design & Rutt Kitchens of Los Altos.

Kitchens have been on overdrive since Thanksgiving, with Christmas Day, perhaps, being the swan song for an outdated or dysfunctional one – that is, if Santa got the message.

By Design: Seamlessly incorporating heirlooms into your home

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Celeste Randolph/Special to the Town Crier
Displaying heirlooms in a home can make the space feel unique, special and authentic.

“Anyone may have diamonds: an heirloom is an ornament of quite a different kind.” – Elizabeth Aston

In 1932, George Liebenstein gave Maud Taylor a silver tea set engraved with initials “MTL” to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. More than eight decades later, it sits in our home, reminding us of our family’s past.

Native Plants: Monarch waystations provide necessary habitat for butterflies

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Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier
Monarchs seek out milkweed, above, to lay their eggs, because the caterpillars eat only milkweed leaves.

Did you see any monarch butterflies in your garden this year? If not – or if you want to see more – consider creating a monarch waystation. That’s a pollinator garden designed specifically to cater to the needs of monarchs.

Coming up Roses: Reine des Violettes shines in romantic rose bouquet

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Julia Isaac/Special to the Town Crier
The Reine des Violettes rose was bred by Mille-Mallet in France in 1860.

I have introduced some of my favorite roses to the readers of the Town Crier, such as Pierre de Ronsard, Geoff Hamilton and Wollerton Old Hall roses. However, all of these are modern roses. I would like to introduce an old garden rose – Reine des Violettes, also called Queen of the Violets.

Rains herald optimal conditions for planting wildflowers

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Sherri Osaka/Special to the Town Crier
California native wildflowers, including clarkia, above, are simple to grow and attract pollinators.

It’s time to go wild with wildflowers. The days are shorter, the nights are cooler and, according to the “Old Farmer’s Almanac,” rain is forecast for early November. This is the optimal season for sowing wildflowers.

Promoting well-being in bedroom design

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Lauren Edith Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
Creating a restful, calm and inviting master bedroom, above and right, can promote both good health and restoration.

Every summer, my family and I spend time at the beach. I love waking up early, grabbing a cup of tea and finding a yoga class outside, breathing in the fresh air.

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