Does spring mark a groundbreaking moment at your place? Will you be doing a kitchen remodel, gutting that 1960s bathroom or building a new patio with an outdoor fireplace?
In Atlanta, where I live, the flowers (and pollen) have arrived, and it’s a terrific time to plant new trees, shrubs and perennials. But even if your yard is still buried in snow, you may be sketching out a new flower bed, ordering vegetable seeds or choosing planters for the porch.
Putting away heavier bed linens, changing out throw pillows and rearranging furniture for a fresh look are a few ways to lighten up your home for the warmer months ahead. What kinds of decor swaps do you plan to make this spring?
Spring is a good time to put on your “estate manager” hat and reach out to service pros to tackle maintenance and repair projects such as gutter repair, air duct cleaning and chimney sweeping. What’s on your must-do maintenance list?
Spring is a great time to tackle often-neglected cleaning jobs. I like to follow Houzz contributor Laura Gaskill’s monthly home checklists for a guide. Or you may be planning to revamp your home office filing system or reorganize your garage. What spring cleaning and organizing projects do you have planned?
Did you know the cheeseburger was invented in Pasadena? Lionel Sternberger made history in 1924 when he served the very first cheeseburger while working at his father’s Pasadena roadside stand, The Rite Spot.
Pasadena salutes Lionel’s delectable innovation with Cheeseburger Week, January 8th – 13th, during which over 40 of Pasadena’s favorite eateries offer their signature burgers. Experience the Zacatecas Burger at El Portal, K-Pop at Dog Haus, the Impossible Burger at Umami and many more!
Go to pasadenarestaurantweek.com to take the Cheeseburger Challenge and vote for your favorite burger. You can also check out a complete list of participating restaurants and hear the official song of Cheeseburger Week!
Jan 1-2 | Post Parade Showcase of Floats
Jan 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 | Music in the Chinese Garden
Jan 20 | Robert Kennard: Architect & Mentor
Jan 27 | Silent Sunday Series: Ella Cinders
Keep your tree looking lush until the last ornament is packed away with these tips for watering, using stands and siting
Artificial trees may have increased in popularity, but for the purist, only a real tree will do. No matter how realistic it looks, an artificial tree can’t compete with the scent and feel of a real evergreen. It’s a living part of nature that, for a short time, we give a place of honor in our homes.
And no matter which kind of tree it is — spruce, fir, pine or cypress — once it’s indoors, the goal is to keep the tree fresh and green. This means keeping the needles pliable and on the tree until the holidays are over. And the only thing that does that is water, lots of it. Think of it like a big, green pet: Just as a dog or cat needs fresh water every day, so does a fresh Christmas tree.
You can saw off some of the tree’s branches and cover garden beds with them to protect plants, or turn them into mulch with a chipper or shredder. If you have the acreage, drag the tree to an out-of-the-way spot for birds and animals to use as cover. Most communities now collect spent Christmas trees and make mulch or compost from them, which they offer back to residents. The saddest end for a tree is for it to be hauled off to a landfill, instead of being turned back into soil — allowed to decompose and feed living creatures, the way nature intended.
I was thrilled to attend the kick off for the Moonlight Forest Magical Lantern Festival. The Arboretum has been transformed by magnificent lantern art into a wonderland as vividly colorful as Chihuly Gardens. The illuminated displays center on three themes – Magical China, Nature’s Treasures and Children’s World.
Magical China acquaints visitors with Asian culture. Some highlights include the stunning Terracotta Warriors, an enormous Chinese palace, and my favorite, a dazzling Chinese dragon that stretches across Baldwin Lake. Learn about Chinese opera, Chinese zodiac and other traditions.
Nature’s Treasures offers a zoo-like experience right here in Arcadia! Elephants, giraffes, zebras are among the great variety of animals artfully depicted by the lanterns. Flowers and trees round out the nature theme.
Kids and grown-ups alike will be charmed by Children’s World. A stunning color-changing frog, charming Panda Paradise and vibrant Candy Tunnel are a few of the whimsical displays. Children also have the opportunity to create crafts with paint and dough.
But that’s not all! Chinese acrobats and dancers perform nightly, and a great selection of food trucks and bars offer refreshment to round out your Moonlight Forest experience.
You’ve got to come see this amazing fantasy of light for yourself! The Moonlight Forest runs Wednesdays – Sundays now through January 6, 2019. Visit arboretum.org for tickets. Your get 15% off if you get an Arboretum membership. It pays for itself and you can enjoy the Arboretum year-round with your family. Enjoy!
Splurge on the fancy cinnamon spice tea, fresh-pressed cider for
It’s no fun to turn on the heat for the first time only to realize that the
Take a walk around the outside of your home this weekend and make
Not so in love with your laundry room? For a quick update, bring in a vase of fresh flowers and treat yourself to a new laundry basket you love. Have a few more dollars (and hours) to invest? Hang a new wall shelf to hold your laundry supplies or swap out the light fixture for one that suits your style.
With (typically) more mild weather and golden light, early fall can be
If you grew herbs in your garden this year and they’re producing more
- Wash freshly cut herbs and dry lightly with a dishcloth or paper towels.
- Tie herbs into small bundles using rubber bands, twine or twist ties.
- Hang bundles indoors, out of direct sunlight, until dry and crispy.
- Once fully dried, store your herbs in airtight containers for six to 12 months.
September is Disaster Preparedness Month, and with hurricane season
- Pack disaster kits for your home and cars. The American Red Cross has a good checklist if you need guidance on what to include.
- Plan and practice for an evacuation from your home.
- Make a plan for staying in contact and meeting up with your family.
- Be sure your pets are microchipped or wearing tags in case you get separated.
Celebrate the 4th of July
Memorial Park > Times Vary
3: Pre-parade picnic, music, kids zone & more.
4: Celebrate all day with a 5k fun run, followed by the annual parade, music, games & fireworks.
Pasadena | Americafest
Rose Bowl Stadium > 2-9:30pm
4: Don’t miss this world-renowned fireworks show & entertainment at America’s Stadium.
Lacy Park > Opens: 7am, Fireworks: 9pm
4: Celebrate with food, fun zone, parade, entertainment & fireworks.
Library Park > Entertainment: 3pm, Music: 7pm, Fireworks: 9pm
4: Monrovia celebrates with entertainment, live music & fireworks.
South Pasadena | Festival of Balloons
Locations Vary > 7am-4pm, Fireworks: 9pm
4: Parade showcasing the balloons, pancake breakfast, celebration at the park & fireworks.
Crescenta Valley High School > 4-9:30pm
4: Annual celebration with live music, food from Berlin Truck & Slammin’ Sliders & fireworks.
Music in the Park
Memorial Park > 6-8pm
1: Sierra Madre Music Co.
8: Cash Up Front
15: Sgt. Peppers
22: Alumni Acoustic
29: Tenor Daniel Rodriguez
Finkbiner Park Bandshell > 6pm
1: City Beat and the Main Street Horns
8: Kings of 88
22: Creedence Relived
29: Night Owl Jazz Orchestra
La Cañada Flintridge
Memorial Park > 6-8pm
1: FM Radio
8: The Jack Lantz Big Band
15: My Generation
22: Cold Duck
29: Past Action Heroes
Farnsworth Park > 7pm
7: Kenny Sara & the Sounds of New Orleans
14: Susie Hansen Latin Band
21: Lisa Haley & the Zydekats
28: Mary Jane’s Last Dance
Saturdays at Station Square Amphitheater
Sundays at Library Park
Parks After Dark Concerts > 5:30-7:30pm
14: Jazz it Up! (Washington Park)
21: 80’s Vibes (Central Park)
Norton Simon Museum > 5-6pm
14: Del Mar Trio
21: Marlon Martinez & the Jazz Marlonius Quartet
Movie Nights Under the Stars
Old Pasadena Summer Cinema
Across Old Pasadena > Times Vary
5-28: Movie series featuring 17 screenings in various urban locations.
Finkbiner Park Bandshell > Dusk
11: Lego Ninjago
Memoral Park > 8pm
13: Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
27: Sherlock Gnomes
21: Space Jam (Julian Fisher Park)
28: The Sandlot (Recreation Park)
Fun in the Outdoors
Classic Car Nights
Lake Avenue Church, Pasadena > 6-8pm
13 & 27: Classic car show with burgers, live music, a raffle & all ages fun.
Colorado Street Bridge Party
Colorado Street Bridge, Pasadena > 6-11:30pm
14: Music, dance, activities & more. Visit the Podley volunteers at the wine & beer bar!
Glendora Village Art Walk
Glendora Village > 5-8pm
20: Featured artists interact throughout the Village while showcasing their pieces & process.
Altadena Chalk Walk
Altadena Library > 10am-3pm
21: Twelve artists showcase their works. There is extra space to create your own chalk masterpiece.
Dancing Under the Stars
The Paseo, Pasadena
Dance Lesson: 7-7:30pm, Music: 7:30-9:30pm
22 & 29: Learn some dancing steps, then enjoy free live motown & rock.
MAFA Summer Art Walk
Old Town Monrovia > 7-10pm
28: Stroll in the cool summer air & enjoy art demos, live music & more.
1. Pick one (or more) simple earth-friendly tweaks to up your energy-efficiency game. Something as simple as remembering to always shut off lights and unplug devices when you leave a room can add up to energy savings over the course of a year. Other easy tweaks to make right away include swapping traditional bulbs for compact fluorescent or LED bulbs, sealing up holes and cracks around the house, and installing low-flow fixtures.
2. Buy nothing (new) for a day. Reduce consumption and save cash by intentionally avoiding unnecessary shopping for a day this weekend. If you do have a need for an item, opt for secondhand, thrift or antiques stores over your regular go-to shops. Want to take it a step further? Join a local Buy Nothing group and swap goods with neighbors to avoid unnecessary purchases.
3. Pare back your book collection. If the weather is looking less than springlike in your area, keep busy indoors with a decluttering project. Bolster yourself with good music and start filling a bin with books to give away or sell.
4. Find a good home for hard-to-donate items. Whether it’s a stash of leftover yarn, spare building materials or unused personal care products, when your go-to local charity won’t accept an item, it can be hard to know what to do — which usually means these things pile up in closets and cupboards. Ferret out your stashes of stuff you’ve been holding on to for far too long, and track down a good home for it.
It’s always a good idea to call a potential donation spot first, as policies vary by location. The tips below can get you started.
- Habitat for Humanity’s ReStores take building materials and furniture.
- Some homeless and women’s shelters accept unopened personal care products.
- Senior centers are often happy to accept donated yarn.
5. Set up your kitchen for a rise-and-shine Monday. Combat that case of the Mondays by doing a little extra prep on Sunday evening. Fill a blender with smoothie ingredients and store it in the fridge, fill the coffee pot with water, and make sure everything is neat and tidy. You may not have little birds helping you get dressed in the morning, but at least you’ll have something good to drink.
6. Start planning for house painting. Spring and summer are prime times for house painting, and if you’re hiring pros, it helps to get on their schedule early. Start searching for painters, checking references and scoping out paint colors so you (and your house) are ready to go when it’s painting time.
7. Help clean up a natural area. Earth Day offers lots of opportunities to pitch in and make our parks, beaches, forests and wetlands cleaner, safer places for wildlife. Search for a cleanup event happening near you, or gather with friends and family to clean up a favorite nature spot on your own. Even when cleaning up, remember to stay on marked trails and carry out everything you bring in.