autumn gardenLast evening as I was taking a stroll after dinner, was the first time this year that I realized it was autumn. Not because of the calender, rather it was the assault to my senses. The Indian Summer warm temperature. Leaves falling to the ground in slow motion. Hearing the sound of leaves rustling in a soft breeze. That particular smell of damp earth and botanical decay. It was delicious!

That made me think of home and decorating changes that will allow me to fully celebrate this new season.

There are many simple ways that just seem right at this time of year.  With summer, we want to be outside enjoying all of the things unique to that season. Now, with shorter days and cooler temperatures, it’s only natural that we navigate indoors.

There’s a kind of cocooning that happens. Sort of like a bear preparing for hibernation. Our home becomes our “den” and we want to feel safe, protected, and warm.


Switch lighter colored area rugs with ones that pick up the colors listed below.

Think of of fleece, chenille, velvet, cashmere. Plaids are especially beautiful this time of year. The fabric just has to feel soft and warm. Sort of like you’re getting a big hug.

Besides the autumnal colors of yellows, golds, burnt red and oranges, think of bringing in plums, purples,  eggplant, and deep greens. Jewel tones that are rich , moody, and enveloping. All of these colors blend together into a tapestry that just seem right this time of the year. Use throws and pillows to bring in these hues.

Instead of fresh flowers, vases filled with dried leaves and seed pods is more in keeping with this season. And, of course, pumpkins and gourds add great color and texture to any fall display.

Besides the wonderful aromas of cinnamon, vanilla, apples, and evergreens, think of introducing fig,bamboo,and pomegranate.

Not everyone is lucky enough to have a fireplace. However, you can purchase electric fireplaces that look good and give off warmth. I also had a client who inserted a DVD into her flat screen T.V. that I swear looked and sounded like the real thing.

After a summer of salads and lighter fare, we start wanting foods with more heft. Maybe it’s nature’s way of making sure we don’t starve during the winter! Below is a recipe that I just discovered and prepared. It’s wonderful and I hope you try it.

2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
1 cup beef broth
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cornstarch
1 and 1/2 beef tenderloin roast
3 tbsp blackcurrant jelly

1. In a small bowl, mix garlic, rosemary, and 1 tsp. olive oil. Rub all over beef. Season with salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 20 min.

2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. In an ovenproof skillet, heat remaining 2 tsp. olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook beef, turning occasionally, until browned. Place skillet in oven. For medium-rare, roast until thermometer placed in the center registers 125 degrees.  Transfer to a plate.

3. Place skillet over medium-heat. Add wine and cranberries. Scrape up brown bits with wooden spoon. Whisk together broth and cornstarch. Add to skillet. Simmer until thickened, 3 to 5 minutes. Whisk in jelly.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

4. To serve, slice beef and drizzle with cranberry jus.

There you have it. Add mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes, a vegetable of your choice, and a glass or two of a Pinot Noir or Merlot. Bon Appetit!

Your senses are now awakened and you’re ready to enjoy this halcyon time of year before it’s time to settle in for the long winter’s nap.

Until next time…



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