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Inside Stories | Everyday Objects with Jess Davis

I’ve been inside Jess Davis’ home a couple of times now. Each time my eye catches something new. I do believe that if I were to visit a hundred more times my eyes would continue to find interest and intrigue that I had missed the first 99 times. One of the marks of truly great design is just this – the layering of materials, patterns, styles, and composition that offers a depth of experience.

How to Hire Contractor Part Two: How to Plan for a Home Renovation

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In my day job as a realtor, my clients consistently ask me about contractors – who to hire and what goes into the process of home renovation. And my friends and family are no different. Everyone around here seems to have a renovation they are dreaming of or ready to pull the trigger on.

So, here it is folks, the definitive guide you’ve all been waiting for.  For the second part of our two-part series on how to hire a contractor,

How to Hire a Contractor Part One: Ready for Your Kitchen Remodel?

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If you ask me, a proclivity for the managing of projects, a.k.a “project management” should be recognized as a trait – you either have it or you don’t. And yet, if you are a homeowner keen on renovation projects, this trait can certainly come in handy.

What if project management isn’t one of the traits that makes you, fabulous you? And what if you just have to remodel your avocado-green kitchen,

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies with Sea Salt

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This recipe is a variation on my standard Chocolate Chip Cookie.  Instead of toffee pieces, I’ve done pretzel pieces and even chopped maraschino cherries. (I like to save those for the Holidays.) If you can’t find the toffee pieces, these cookies are positively delicious with just chocolate chips and sea salt.

A few things before we start: I try to use mostly organic ingredients.  I am conscious about my food and how it’s processed.

Inside Stories | An Outdated Colonial Goes Glam in a Stunning Home Makeover

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Alexis Goldstein is an artist by nature. A successful Director of Sales at a major digital property by day, her art hangs from the walls of her Maplewood NJ home and displays itself through the flow, fabric and distinction of her interior design. When she and her husband, Justin Goldstein, a Brooklyn-based Realtor at Halstead, set out to purchase a home, their priorities were solid bones, walk to town,

Holiday Tipping Guide

It’s about saying thank you. 

Those of us who live in the Northeast of the United States have a wonderful holiday tradition – saying thanks to our year-round service providers by giving holiday tips.  Recently I’ve learned that in many places in the U.S., such as the suburbs of the Midwest, this isn’t a regional custom. Yet in their major cities, like Chicago, it’s done often. And it’s almost unheard of in the EU and in our neighbor to the north,

Inside Stories | A Menagerie of Curiosities Finds a Home in New Jersey

A Collection of Natural Curiosities, Textiles, and Victorian-esque Oddities That Wes Anderson Would Adore.

Margot Tenenbaum greeted me at the door, as she so often does when I visit, and treating me like anything but royalty chased me from the mudroom and to the kitchen where I was greeted by her humans, Zoe Bean and Sweety.

Zoe Bean and Sweety, married with one son, live in a 1924 center-hall colonial in South Orange,

Spicy Asian Noodle Soup For What Ails You

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Spicy Asian Noodle Soup, A Family Favorite

The fall cold season settled heavily upon the Labianca/McDaniel household.  With three sick kids sporting four infected ears among them and two sniffly parents, I decided it was time for some Spicy Asian Noodle Soup.

This soup is a family favorite and is great to clear up sinuses and help break a fever when you’re sick. (Just add extra ginger and chilis to the broth.) It is also just a delicious,

It’s Simple | Understanding Steam Heat

Many homes in South Orange and Maplewood, NJ use steam heat, an outdated but very comfortable heat source is simple to understand, but requires routine attention for proper operation.

Steam boilers (not furnaces as they are sometimes called) can be heated by oil or gas which are called having an oil fired steam boiler or a gas fired steam boiler.

Think of a boiler like a pot of water on your stove with a flame under it.  

The History of My Home | The Thompson’s 1907 – 1966

The history of my home tells a unique story about a family in love with Maplewood, NJ.

Do you ever wonder who lived in your home before you? Do you wonder what changes they made and why?  What were their kids like – did they love sliding down the banister just like mine do? It took more then a few hours of research over several months to compile the history of my home and I learned about the Thompson’s,

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