In the garden…. it’s time to till the beds and add fresh mulch prior to planting the fall flowers. What looks nice for quite some time and pairs well with our Houston climate are mums. I even have some that made it through the hot summer and are fixin’ to bloom yet again!


At the front door it’s time to examine what that space is looking like. If the door looks sad perhaps a fresh coat of red paint is in order. There is nothing more welcoming that a bright red front door! You are going to have guests coming from Halloween through New Year’s so now is the time to spruce that space up!


On my bedside (or nightstand) table now are the latest copies of “Travel Agent” and “Conde Nast,” as well as Gary Keller’s “SHIFT.” Pretty reflective of where I am right now in my life right now! Is what you are reading feeding you? Find out what makes you passionate about living and giving back and stretch yourself to find passive streams of income. My big “why?” I want to retire early and sit on a beach booking travel and writing for the rest of my life!


Earmark one per week and go through each “junk” drawer in your kitchen and then move on to your home office. Take bins and place the items in a semi organized fashion. After tackling those drawers that always seem to attract the strangest things, walk around the house and put back the items where they actually belong. Keeping everything in its place and having no “surprise” drawers for your family during the holidays will make you less stressed.


Have a little family meeting and discuss what adventures you’d like to have on Spring Break. Ask the children to describe their “PERFECT” vacation. That will give us some clues as to what things they might enjoy and where your next destinations should be.


It’s time to be like a sneaky Santa and start picking up teacher gifts and stocking stuffers as you see them while you are out and about. Store these in a bin in the closet and keep gathering like a squirrel so you have all your stash finished way before the Holiday rush begins!


Go through the attic and see if there are any coats or toys that you may have inadvertently placed out of site. Chances are there are a few items that you can drop by the Goodwill or local shelter. It’s not that many days…but we will have a few cold ones, and for the homeless and less fortunate that coat in your closet can be a lifesaver.


Visit the Houston Zoo now that we are having a little break from our super-hot weather. Enjoy the park or the museum too! Children, young and old, like to start conversations and there’s no better place to inspire that than by giving them the experience of art, nature and good conversation! Cell phones OFF please!


Call each of your family members and assign them recipes for the Thanksgiving feast. I find that creating a board on Pinterest has been very effective at getting cooperation in this area. There’s a recipe… there’s a picture…here’s the how-to that you have been assigned to bring. Hard to argue with at that point…right?? They will still find a way to cause they are family but alas… at least you did try!


Find a project to do with the children that will become a tradition. Perhaps it’s decorating the mantle or table-scaping for Thanksgiving. It could be going to the Farmer’s Market and gathering fresh apples and them making a pie. We like to ask the children to make a craft and participate in the appetizers for our gatherings. Here’s a turkey treat that is easy enough for the littles to make! Whatever it is just know that those hard days of parenting are memories you are making and they will long outlive you!