Courtesy of Lori Bolton

Lori's Mini Mag

Volume 37 Number 2


When it comes to interior design styles, the term “contemporary” is unique in that it’s constantly evolving. While styles like mid-century modern and traditional stay largely the same year after year, contemporary is always changing because – by definition – it means what is going on right now. However the now is always changing, isn’t it? So what do the interiors of contemporary homes look like these days? For starters, picture an open floor plan then add floor-to-ceiling windows.

Now, envision the surfaces covered with light-toned wood paneling and – where there isn’t wood – white walls. Add in black accents such as metal light fixtures, painted hand railings and black and white artwork. In a more daring contemporary home, there may even be a sculpture made of stone, metal or even an art installation made of fabric. To sum up – today’s contemporary homes are open, airy, modern and minimalistic.


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INGREDIENTS: 1 pound whole cremini mushrooms 1/4 cup butter 1 small onion, diced

1/4 cup Parmesan 1/4 cup mozzarella, shredded 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon pepper

4 cloves garlic, minced 2/3 cup breadcrumbs

Have you ever seen photos of a room with a black feature wall and thought, “Wow! How daring!” Maybe you even liked the look so much you’d like replicate it in your own home. If so, take a minute to consider a slightly softer, but still impactful shade – soot. A slightly less deep black, soot borders on very dark grey and echoes colours found in natural stone or the metals of classic industrial design. Homeowners are loving the less intense shade and are using it to paint their kitchen cabinets, built-in bookcases, bathrooms, feature walls – even the inside of closets. One of the great things about a soot coloured wall is it isn’t going to show fingerprints and scuff marks the way a light wall would. If an entire room in soft black – or even an entire wall – is too much for you, try introducing it with furniture and accents. Another option would be to select a soft black tile for your kitchen or bathroom floor, or tile your shower in a very dark grey. There are truly so many options to bring this look into your home. The great thing is it blends well with many interior styles such as traditional, industrial, modern, Scandinavian and minimalist. Want to give it a try? Check out these soft black colours from various paint brands. SOOT IS A BEAUTIFUL ALTERNATIVE TO BLACK DIRECTIONS: 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove and chop the stems from the mushrooms. 2. Melt the butter in a large skillet and add the onions and the chopped mushroom stems. Sauté until softened and starting to brown. Add the garlic, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, mozzarella, parsley, salt and pepper. Stir over low heat until well combined. Add additional butter if the filling looks too dry. 3. Add the mushrooms to a baking sheet, hole side up. Insert the filling. 4. Bake until the mushrooms have darkened and the filling is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Enjoy! " A FRIEND IS SOMEONE WHO KNOWS ALL ABOUT YOU AND STILL LOVES YOU. -Elbert Hubbard

Elbert Hubbard was born in Illinois in 1856. He was a writer, publisher, artist and philosopher. He is best known for founding the New York’s Roycroft artisan community and was an influential member of the Arts and Crafts movement. Among his many publications were Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, which encompasses fourteen volumes. He and his second wife, Alice Moore Hubbard, died in 1915 when the RMS Lusitania was sunk by a German submarine off the coast of Ireland.

• Off Black by Farrow & Ball. • French Beret by Benjamin Moore.

• Caviar by Sherwin Williams. • Broadway by Behr.

THREE BENEFITS OF DOWNSIZING Thinking of selling your larger home in favour of something smaller? Maybe your kids are grown and you no longer need as much space. Or maybe you’d rather have a smaller mortgage so you can spend your hard earned money on other things. Whatever the reason, more and more Canadians are considering downsizing their home. Here are just a few of the benefits and reasons why. 1. Downsizing to save money. Possibly one of the most common reasons to downsize is that smaller homes tend to cost less than larger ones. Of course, selling a larger home in a small town only to move to an expensive downtown city condo isn’t necessarily going to cost less. But selling a larger home and moving to a smaller one within the same area definitely will. 2. Downsizing to lower your carbon footprint. One reason people downsize, that has been steadily growing over the last few years, is eco- responsibility. A larger home means more energy required to heat and light it. A larger home also requires the use of more cleaning products and more maintenance materials. 3. Downsizing to relocate. If you’ve ever wanted to live in the heart of a city, you’ll know that the most likely way to do so is to buy a condo or townhome. Larger houses are usually located in the suburbs, or in smaller towns and the country. If you dream of walking out your door and into the bustle of a downtown core, downsizing is a way to achieve it.

1. What is there one of in every corner and two of in every room? 2. The more there is, the less you see. What am I? 3. I have many faces, expressions, and emotions, and I am usually right at your fingertips. What am I? REALLY HARD RIDDLES Courtesy of

4. A barrel of water weighed 60 pounds. Someone put something in it and now it weighs 40 pounds. What did the person add? 5. You are my brother, but I am not your brother. Who am I?

3. Emojis. 4. A hole. 5. I am your sister.

1. The letter O. 2. Darkness.



Cross number puzzles use digits rather than words. Each of the digits 1 through 9 is only used once in each of these two puzzles. Can you figure out where they must be placed so that each of the equations (both horizontally and vertically) are true? Only positive numbers are involved.

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Cell: 905.536.6959

ESTIMATING RENOVATION COSTS BEFORE BUYING A FIXER UPPER Older homes tend to have larger yards, more mature greenery and are close to amazing amenities. The neighbourhood where a fixer upper is located might be well established, and if it is only in need of a little TLC , it may also be well-priced. However, the challenge with buying a home with plans to renovate is estimating how much the actual renovation costs will be. Experts recommend breaking down the project into chunks and assessing the cost from there. The cost of updating the exterior and landscaping should actually be the easiest price to estimate as you can call reputable contractors in the area and ask them to take a look at the home from the outside. As for interior renovations, start with the kitchen since it’s usually the biggest cost. Again, talk to a contractor or kitchen specialist from the area. As long as you know the size of the kitchen and how much work you’d like to do they can give you a rough estimate, which can be anywhere from $50,000-$150,000. For the bathrooms, it’s the same idea. How many bathrooms are in the home? Do you want to renovate them all? Will the fixtures be staying in place or does the location need to be moved, meaning added plumbing expenses? Smaller bathrooms run about $15,000- $25,000 in cost, while larger bathrooms are an extra $10,000- $15,000 on top of that. Once you’re done adding up the estimates for those major areas, you’ll want to factor in whole house reno costs such as paint or flooring – if you haven’t already. Don’t forget to include 10-20% extra for unforeseen costs, which are a reality on the road to the renovation of your dreams!


Indoor plants bring so many positives into our home. From helping to purify the air, to providing us with greenery to look at during the long winter months. While caring for them during the winter isn’t a huge task, they’ll definitely be thankful if you do take a few extra precautions. For starters, make sure to dust their leaves as too much buildup can hamper their ability to absorb sunlight. Even better, put your plants in the shower and give them a good soak, which will remove any dust and give them a nice deep drink. Next up, make sure you don’t repot them during the colder months. Many plants go dormant this time of year and repotting them could send them into shock. Last up, make sure you don’t keep them near any drafty windows and doors. A cold blast could be too much for them to handle. Instead, keep them in warmer areas of your home. When outdoor temperatures increase, you can move them back to windowsills and near your entrances.

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