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HOME & GARDEN
January 2, 2010 | Chris Erskine
It's difficult to sum up the Celtic drama that was our holidays. First, the whole place smelled of hot sauce and scrambled eggs for almost two weeks. What's with that? I finally had to crack open a window. The crowning moment probably came a few days before Christmas when the little girl called an impromptu family meeting. This stunned everybody, for we haven't had a family meeting in about seven years. The last time was just before the little guy was born, to announce we were still fertile and to tell the kids "let that be a lesson to you how a few moments of animal behavior can forever alter your life" -- that kind of stuff.
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HOME & GARDEN
December 26, 2009
Re "Stories for Life" (Dec. 19): How I wish I'd seen your article encouraging the interviewing of aging loved ones in 1975! As a teenager growing up in the very remote Ozarks, I used to keep my elderly grandmother company while she hand-churned butter or made her own incredibly tasty cottage cheese while I watched. She casually would mention "that pinch-faced President Wilson" or admire that late, lovely young actress named Marilyn Monroe while I listened, utterly unaware of the deep wellspring of history sitting across from me. If only I'd secured some of these many interesting retrospective observations on tape!
HOME & GARDEN
December 19, 2009
More Is More Hutton Wilkinson Abrams: 368 pp., $75
HOME & GARDEN
December 19, 2009
Sustainable Landscaping for Dummies Owen E. Dell Wiley: 364 pp, $21.99
HOME & GARDEN
December 19, 2009
Kid Made Modern Todd Oldham Ammo Books: 192 pp., $22.95
HOME & GARDEN
December 19, 2009
What are the must-haves in Southern California potting sheds these days? We asked the folks at Gardener's Supply, the Vermont-based mail-order company. Its most popular tools and gadgets among California consumers are those that support sustainable gardening, spokeswoman Maree Gaetani says. "Our kitchen compost crocks are big -- including the new bamboo one," she says. The Bamboo Crock, a container for kitchen scraps that can be composted, is made from a sustainable material and has a 3 1/3 -quart removable pail and a snug-fitting lid. It measures 11 inches high and 7 3/4 inches in diameter.
HOME & GARDEN
December 19, 2009
In Korean, duson means two hands. It's the ideal name for designer Yeung Kim's Silver Lake store, a mix of contemporary home furnishings he made from recycled objects as well as other midcentury furniture and found art. "I like to mix American, Asian, antiques and modern," says Kim, who sells 500-year-old bronze bowl rims from Korea mounted on sleek wooden bases. Point to a thick wooden chopping block mounted on an old typewriter stand or a table lamp made from dented cola cans, and Kim will say, "I made that."
HOME & GARDEN
December 19, 2009 | By Emily Green
The idea that suburban gardens might be "sustainable" came late to Southern California. Modern Los Angeles was sold on the promise that anything grows here. Exotic plants were status symbols. Sunshine was constant, and the only worry about water was finding plants best suited to go next to the swimming pool. More than a century later, the fantasy style is out. Sustainable is in. There's only one problem. What does sustainable mean? Landscape architect Owen Dell has cut through the eco-babble to offer not just a definition but also a how-to book.
HOME & GARDEN
December 12, 2009
The National Christmas Tree outside the White House represents the most energy-efficient tree in a long, long time, expected to consume just 6,000 watts of power, compared with 18,000 in 2008 and 40,000 in the years before that. The 42-foot-tall Colorado blue spruce is decorated with LEDs from topper to toe -- 750 strings of white lights in all. In the spirit of recycling, the White House and National Park Foundation also suggested that the team behind the tree "take a look at reusing some of the ornaments from the past," said Mary Beth Gotti, who designed the National Christmas Tree.
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