Tag Archives: The Denver Post

What’s the difference between a menorah and a chanukiah?

Denver menorah history Mizel Museum

Photo by Aaron Ontiveroz of The Denver Post

Chanukah begins tomorrow, December 12, 2017, in the Gregorian calendar. Researching my article on Chanukah lights for The Denver Post, I interviewed a rabbi and a professor of Jewish studies. I visited a Jewish cultural center. And I looked at menorahs of all sizes, shapes, materials and moods.

Even though I went on assignment to Israel in 1994, I didn’t know the difference between a menorah and a chanukiah. The temple menorah has seven branches, as instructed in the Bible’s Book of Exodus. The Chanukah menorah has nine branches: eight to represent the eight nights of miraculous oil and one “servant” candle to light the others.

The rabbi noted that the symbol of light is common to many faiths.

“The really interesting religious dimension is that Chanukah, Diwali [the Hindu festival of light], Christmas, and Kwanza [the African-American celebration that incorporates candle-lighting] all come at the darkest time of the year. Our religious impulse is to bring light,” said Rabbi Eliot Baskin of Denver’s Jewish Family Service.

“The torch held by the lady in New York harbor represents the liberty of religious freedom. And that’s what makes America so great. This Chanukah, as we recall the rededication of the temple, we rededicate ourselves to religious freedom for all.”

Happy Chanukah to all Jewish people, and may all people of goodwill stand in the light.


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Expert tips for setting a memorable table

Thanksgiving table setting ideas

Photo by John Leyba of The Denver Post


Thanksgiving has come and gone, but these tips apply to any table for any special occasion. My article published in The Denver Post includes tips from a Sur la Table chef and two design experts from an events company celebrating their 70-year-old anniversary this year. Whether rustic or elegant, there’s something for everyone.

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Five easy handmade gifts from the heart



Image from The Denver Post


Here come the holidays, and the season of hostess gifts and gift exchanges. Even if you’re on an budget or find yourself lacking Martha Stewart homemaking skills, these gifts will do the trick.

Have a look at my article published in The Denver Post.

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Botanical illlustration: where science and art meet

Botanic art and illustration

Illustration by Randy Raak | Photo by RJ Sangosti of The Denver Post

Even if your garden is put to bed after the growing season, you can find delight in botanical illustrations. Part science and part art, botanical illustrations provide painstakingly detailed looks at fruits, flowers, vegetables, trees–any member of the plant kingdom.
One of the most rewarding aspects of botanical illustrations is that they can provide us with a look at plants from seed to blossom to flower to fruit–all in one image.
Whether you’re interested in pursuing botanical illustration or simply want a close-up appreciation of plants, have a look at my article published in The Denver Post. You’ll find a number of examples of artfully rendered botanical illustrations.


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Djuna reopens tony design store in Denver

Djuna new location for antiques

Photo by John Leyba of The Denver Post

Djuna, named after the eccentric American writer Djuna Barnes, will host their grand reopening in November. Visit Djuna at 1824 South Broadway in Denver if you’re in the market for one-of-a-kind French antiques, sumptuous bedding, American-made upholstery–or inspiration from amazing interior design set-ups by artistic owners Karen and Jeffrey Moore.
My feature in The Denver Post last weekend includes a wonderful slide show that gives you a sense even if you can’t make it to the bricks-and-morter wonderland that is Djuna.
Have a look here.


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Transition outdoor living space from summer to fall and winter

Birdsall & Co home and garden shop reopens in Englewood, Colorado.

Photo: Helen H. Richardson of The Denver Post

Autumn is upon us, with summer a memory and Old Man Winter not far away. Now is a perfect time to spruce up the garden for fall and beyond. We’ll likely have plenty of days to enjoy outdoor living, and a few adjustments will make your garden, patio or porch more appealing and more comfortable.

In my article for The Denver Post, professional designers share their expert tips. And there’s a beautiful slide show that might spark your creativity, too.

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End of summer propagation projects: save seeds, take cuttings


Seed saving and propagation stretches any gardening budget.

As August winds down, many gardens are revved up. Now is an ideal time to collect some seeds for next season and take some cuttings to propagate over winter. Saving seeds and propagating plants will stretch your garden budget and give you a green-thumb fix during the dead of winter.
The Denver Post published my article about propagating plants, and the piece includes lots of tips from the woman known as “the Propagation Queen” at Denver Botanic Gardens. You may read the article here.
Easy seeds to save include hollyhocks, cosmos, marigolds, and many other annuals and bi-annuals. You might want to take cuttings from zonal geraniums, angel wing begonias, succulents, or herbs such as sage and rosemary. All you need is a sunny window or some grow lights, and you’ll have an indoor garden.
The best part is when spring comes and you have plants ready to go outdoors without purchasing them.

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