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Hello and Happy new years eve! Reporting  from sunny California…where the weather is just perfect in every sense. Sunny, warm, 70’s, zero humidity…….it is heaven especially coming from cold, icy NY! I prepared this post in advance…… I just cannot believe 2013 is over. Hard to believe we are about to start a whole new year…wow this one really flew. I feel like I say it every year but this year I really really mean it. It was a good year, a productive year and a year filled with many highlights. There are still many many things on my “to do” list and I am hoping that 2014 will allow me to bring those to fruition. I have a penchant for even numbers and 14 happens to be one of my lucky numbers so I am quite looking forward to 2014!

As I have done the last two years (wow cannot believe I have been blogging that long) I have created a post on reflections from this past year as well as a favorite post from each month of the last year. Hope you enjoy…I cannot thank you enough for your support, friendship, I feel incredibly fortunate and look forward to another wonderful year together! I will be back on Jan. 4th and very much look forward to resuming blogging and starting off 2014 with a bang!

Click on title of post to visit

JANUARY….One word with Tina from The Enchanted Home, I had fun answering my own questions on different things.

FEBRUARY   Building a blue and white collection. A fun post for any blue and white aficionado and how to start building a blue and white collection.

MARCH Three cheers for cherry blossoms. This post is so appropriate for March…cherry blossom beauty at its best!

APRIL Dining al fresco.….nothing quite like it!

MAY The perfect little getaway.  A recap from my wonderful trip to the beautiful Mayflower Inn and Spa.

JUNE Party central part 1. A fun look at the prep behind a birthday luncheon I threw for a friend…..

JULY Hamptons Panache. Love any excuse to talk about the wonderful Hamptons!

AUGUST  Why the beauty of fall sometimes makes me cry. One of my personal all time favorite posts.

SEPTEMBER How my home came to be. A look at how it all happened……it was fun to go down that road again!

OCTOBER Fall in the Hamptons. A fun post on visting my favorite beach town in the “off season”

NOVEMBER Yearning for urns part 2. A great post on so many wonderful ways to use urns…..

DECEMBER By Invitation only…..Christmas cocktails. Loved and enjoyed putting this fun post together!

Reflections on 2013…….

Taking advantage of time. It is a cliche but a true one at that.  I have learned how precious time really is…and to try to take advantage of “living in the moment”, seizing opportunities when they happen. I have gotten pretty bold about just going for it as opposed to saying one day I would like to do this or that. Time is so precious and it is a gift, don’t let it pass you by and then one day you have no choice but to look back with regret because that moment of opportunity has come and gone.

Quality vs. quantity in relationships. I have been very very blessed to have some incredible friendships. As with all things in life, some come and some go.           Many I have had for over 20 years and they are still going strong. Some have proven their friendship more than others…..I have learned that it is far more valuable to have a few close true authentic friends than a bunch of people who might not have your back or just be there when it’s fun and fabulous. You know a  good friend by how they react during a tough time, they know when you are sick or stressed and are there unconditionally with support, a hug and a smile. They are by your side not through not just the fun times but the tough ones, when you are sick or down….those are the friends who are the “real deal”.  I value and cherish the friendships I have and am incredibly thankful for them. You know who you are……a million thanks!

Becoming an empty nester. I honestly feel way way too young to almost be an empty nester. Just saying the word makes me well up. My “baby” all six feet of him will be off to college next year fulfilling his dream of playing college lacrosse…it is a dream we are so happy to share with him but it is a chapter closing to what has been virtually my entire life. To any of you who have young kids…..I cannot stress enough how important it is to find the enjoyment and joy out of even the small every day happenings….one day you will wake up and they too will be heading off to college. I have no regrets, I devoted my life to my three kids and wouldnt’ have it any other way. Take all the pictures you want to, even if people make fun of you for it (my family sure did) they will one day be the one thing that can “take you back” to their childhood and fond family memories.I know the silver lining in all of this is more time to myself to pursue dreams and ambitions that maybe had to take a backseat to my most important job, motherhood. More time with my hubby to work on projects together, and travel more……a new stage which will take getting used to. I am thankful to have so many amazingly fond memories of my kids when they were young and still “in my nest” but know there are many special times ahead……

Travel. I really miss traveling the way we used to. All except the flying part!  But thankfully there are meds to get me on the plane and keep me happy and calm! I plan to resume more traveling in the coming year and already have a few ideas for trips including that southern road trip that didn’t happen! I LOVE this quote and think it is so on the mark. Travel makes you feel alive and helps you see a different perspective both of the world all the way until you get home….you know that feeling of  walking into your home after being away and looking at things with a whole new set of eyes and renewed vigor! Travel really does invigorate me.

Slowing down. Up until about 6 years ago I was my happiest being busy 24/7. I was known as the one who was never home and if someone caught me at home it was  a surprise. Now (possibly in part thanks to blogging) I LOVE being home. I have in fact become a bit of a homebody, go figure! I am definitely my happiest being home, being in comfy yoga pants and doing things like blogging, reading, cooking up something yummy, sprucing up something around the house or plotting my next project:) I dont’ miss my frantic lifestyle of going morning, noon and night and love and relish this more relaxed stage of my life. I take it slow and am not afraid to say no to doing things…it is liberating!

Great food. Hey, whats life without something good to eat! I do not fit into my size 6’s anymore and of course I miss looking so svelte but I have to admit I do love good food, love cooking it, buying it and tasting it. Life is too short to not enjoy it. The only thing I want to do different in 2014 is to incorporate more exercise into my life. This might help offset my habit that is here to stay of eating great foods. Life wouldn’t be worth living without cheese, bread, a bit of chocolate,etc…..can’t give those up, no way. But I will start getting back to a regular exercise regimen! Goal for 2014……………of course while enjoying a nice chunk of parmigaiano and a good glass of wine πŸ™‚

Everyone is fighting a battle. I totally believe this. No one and I mean no one goes through life unscathed. Everyone is fighting a battle, some big and some small. I love the saying ” the grass is greener where you water it”. It is easy to look over your shoulder to someone who might seemingly have it better than you but truth is things are not always what they seem. If you walk through life assuming that everyone has something they are battling….you might find yourself being more compassionate and empathetic towards people. I have adopted this and have found its made a difference in how I treat people.

All things worth having are worth waiting for. Boy is that ever true. Case in point my bedroom. I so believed in getting wall to wall carpet for my bedroom that it was worth the “standoff” with my husband for almost a year and a half! But finally we got it and I have been unstoppable in getting the room completed!! Window treatments got put up within weeks, my new lamps were placed on their nightstands, new down comforter and pillows ordered to fill the new linens…indeed the room has come together in just weeks because I felt inspired to finish it at long last. I walk into my room now and am overjoyed with how it makes me feel. It is truly my private oasis. A refuge to get away from our chaotic world, it is everything I wanted and dreamed of. It made me realize and confirmed how very true it that it is indeed worth the wait to get what you want, so don’t compromise if you don’t have to. Carry on with a little more fight…..think you will be happy in the end:)

Hope you enjoyed this post…..what are your own reflections from 2013? Learn something new or did something inspire you to carry into the new year? I like closing the door to the current year having learned a thing or two and starting the new year feeling inspired and enlightened.

 I thank you again for following along…without your support, friendship, encouraging words and countless emails (which I LOVE to read) this blog would cease to exist. You give me a great reason to get up and excited to blog and share so sending a great great big thank you! I look forward to an even better 2014! Cheers to a new year filled with all great things, good health, happiness, love and plenty of laughter:)

Because of this trip…my “Christmas magic” contest dates are slightly changed.
Instead of the deadline for submissions being Jan. 1st it is now Jan. 4th and
the contest will run Jan. 5th through Jan. 7th
. I will announce two lucky
winners on Jan. 8th. Details are below……
I also want to announce the start of my
final contest for 2013, “Christmas magic”. I will be collecting pictures as of
today through Jan. 4th.  I will hold the contest on Jan. 5th- 7th and announce
the winner(s) on Jan 8th. As the name implies….please send your pictures of
anything Christmas related, your decorated front door, a beautifully wrapped
gift, a table set with your Christmas finest, your darling kids and pets are
always a hit, whatever the name “Christmas magic” means to you! Since my “Hooray
for the Holidays” post included some Christmas pictures, if you would like to
use the entry you used for that please just email me to let me know and I will
be happy to include it. I cannot wait to start getting your entries!!
  • 2 entries per person (they must be your pictures, not downloaded from
  • Please in subject line when you email me put Christmas Magic (get
    tons of emails )
Please email your pictures to [email protected]

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You have such a positive attitude, Tina that is refreshing and inspiring. My baby will be a senior in college next Fall… being an empty nester takes some getting used to…like you’ll be buying and cooking less food (or end up with lots of leftovers). But it has been a good time with my husband…like this new adventure in SF. Enjoy California. Happy New Year!


I was just in sunny California last week and came home this past Friday! It was 85 degrees in Orange County where I spent Christmas day with my cousins. I want to thank you for these 12 months of 2013 that have lifted my heart. We all have individual styles and homes, visions of beauty and lifestyle, and I want to thank you for always coming to visit my world. I wish you more happiness as you continue to explore the things you have always wanted to learn, appreciate the lessons you have learned, and to continue to inspire US.

Have a BLAST in California! It is wickedly cold here in Minneapolis! Anita

Sooooo beautiful! I cannot wait to visit all the posts I have missed- your blog has brought me so much joy and inspiration- thank you! All the best for the new year- enjoy your trip.

Happy New Year, Tina!! I hope you are having a blast in sunny Cali! It is cold here with snow on the way…ugh. I really enjoyed this post and your reflections on 2013. One of the highlights of this year for me was becoming friends with you! Here’s to friendship and a happy and healthy 2014!!! xoxo

Hi Tina,
What a wonderful recap of your last year. My husband and I did this today-we sat down and put together our goals for 2014 and they fell into 3 categories: financial, health and relationships. We then explored all that falls within each of those categories. We have been doing this for the past few years and it has brought us such freedom and happiness. In addition we are each putting together our reflections of 2013 separately and then we will share them. This is an exercise I recommend to everyone!
Like you, I can no longer fit into my size 4s and 6s (I recently parted with each and every item that was in those 2 sizes). I can say however I am at peace with the size I am and know that the size pants I wear has no reflection on the size of my heart or anything else. Slowing down has become a joy for me. Don’t get me wrong, we still hike and walk and push for health, but I no longer run around like a crazy woman—I am so much more relaxed and confident. There are so many pluses to maturing and I savor each and every aspect of it.
Here’s to 2014 and I will enjoy reading your wonderful blog with all of your wonderful readers during that year.

My dear Tina,
I am trying to put into words just how much it has meant to me to ‘meet’ you, for like a magical journey, in late spring 2013 I found you at the Enchanted Home. Beautiful, super stylishly elegant and eloquent Tina how you inspire me.. I have enjoyed every post since.
I love your reflections on this special year, so infused as ever with your infectious enthusiasm and affection…….Im smiling to read that you receive so so many emails, for I am composing one to you …….!!! πŸ™‚ but for now, it is indeed New Years Eve and I am raising my glass to you from my home in England and I wish you and your family and all who read and love your blog, the most wonderfully happy 2014.
With blessings, love and my thanks
Sally xxx

What fun to look back on all of the remarkable content you have created this year; wow! Enjoy your time away, it sounds like the perfect formula for relaxation and rejuvenation. Happy New Year!

Tina, you write beautifully, just as you do so many things beautifully. This is indeed a time for reflection and expressing gratitude. I have been an empty nester for 15 years, and it is still hard. My children were my entire life as well, more so because I was a single mom. They are still the greatest joys in my life, and we delight in each other’s company. Because my daugher had to work this Christmas, we 3 weren’t together, but we are going to Paris together in February, as we did last year. I will be feeling your pain as your nest empties, and I will be unable to offer anything to make you feel better. But as long as you have no regrets and as long as you love each other, you will create new memories. And…once those little birds fly away, it’s amazing how “smart” you suddenly become. They really begin to see their parents in an entirely new light. Happy New Year to you and yours. And thank you for such a fun, sometimes light and funny, sometimes soul-searching and heart-wrenching blog. It is definitely my favorite.

I’m so glad you have been able to enjoy this beautiful weather in California… is gorgeous here! Cant believe your going to be an empty nester… I was sad at first, but after a month or so the hubby and I really started to enjoy it! Looks like you had a wonderful year!

Well we have entered 2014 with lots of Big Bangs… You might say we were surrounded. But the most beautiful were at Sydney Harbour and the Opera House…WOW. 2013 was one of those years I just wanted to see the end of it with the hope that 2014 would be kinder. You lovely ladies with your wonderful blogs full of humour and inspiration I can honestly say kept my sanity, so I thank you for being there and putting so much of your time and talent to brighten the year that was. Cheers Tina …Hope 2014 is Happy Healthy and Prosperous for you and your family. Regards Esther from Sydney it is 12.30 pm on 1st Jan. 2014


So enjoyed your recap. You captured the year so well and eloquently. Yes, the empty nest. Ups and downs, the hunger for hugs for weeks at a time and then happiness when they return. It was my reason for starting a blog in the first place to deal with the change of parenthood. You’ll do great! πŸ™‚ Happy New Year to you! Enjoy our beautiful weather this week. A little chilly when the sky is clear at night but hopefully you’ve experience the warm Santa Ana winds to relax in the sand. Would love to visit on one of your visits to SoCal. Enjoy! πŸ™‚

Tina, a very happy New Year to you! I hope that you have a fabulous holiday in California. Thank you for sharing your beauty, wisdom, knowledge and adventures this year. I am looking forward to seeing whatever you do this year.

I hope that 2014 is everything you hope and more.

Xo Elizabeth

Tina, I am so happy to have found your blog. It is the one that I most look forward to! Happy New Year to you! I am wishing you a safe, happy, healthy 2014. Thank you so much for all of the wonderful posts. I feel so inspired by you and love your stylish-ness, your enthusiasm, and your warmth that come out in your writing.

Happy New Year Tina… I loved your reflections and agree with them all… Enjoy California and I look forward to much more of your ‘enchanted’ world in 2014… xv

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Happy new year to you Tina. We are skiing in Lake Tahoe and have lots of snow so your sunny warm weather despite how much we love to ski sounds really nice! I loved going over some posts I had not seen and really enjoyed your reflections. I particularly related to the friendship one as I ended a very long standing friendship this year but it was toxic and more than I could deal with and I realized how true it is that some you need to let go and others are there for the long haul. And of course waiting for what you really want, how true. We had our hearts set on a house which wasn’t happening too fast but we waited and waited and finally after almost a year we got it and are closing end of January. No other house would have made me as happy so I really agree with that sentiment. Enjoy your blog immensely and your wise words, tremendous style and wonderful outlook on life. You are so inspiring. Enjoy California!

bonne et heureuse année pour vous et votre famille! ce fut encore et toujours une année de plaisir à lire votre blog qui me fait rêver chaque jour…J’attends impatiemment chaque fois de me plonger dans votre univers… enchanteur!!! merci Tina!!! Happy new year.. Carole

Happy New Year to you and your family. I am following your blog since last June though I have never posted any comment. It’s such a pleasure reading your blog and looking at your pictures. Everyone is fighting a battle resonates in me. I like your attitude.

Buon Anno Tina e grazie di esistere! Catia

Happy New Year, Tina! Keep blogging and I want to see that finished master bedroom:-) Carol P.

You speak from the heart TIna and your honesty is always appreciated. Your reflections on friendships really struck a chord with me. In the end, family and friends are what life is all about, and so true how people come and go in your life – and sometimes go and come back! I hope your son will be playing lax close enough that you will be able to see his games. Our son’s college lacrosse years were so exciting and so fun; I will cherish those memories.

Happy New Year, Tina! I wish I were in sunny Cali next to you. I’m here in MA enduring freezing temps and piles of snow. It is a perfect excuse to stay in yoga pants and cook something yummy.

I too am going to be an empty nester. It’s been tough thinking about it. Logan is my youngest. I’m glad I met Dan, who is a sweetheart and a perfect companion. It’s hard to let go of the kids. I agree that I feel way too young to be an empty nester.

Also, I agree that everyone is fighting a hard battle. We all need to be a little kinder. xoxo

Happy New Year friend! Wonderful to hear you are away while the snow begins to pelt us here in New England. Lovely post, thoughtful and genuine as always. You have much good advice here too. Looking forward to 2014 and hope it brings much satisfaction for us both. xo

It was fun reflecting back on the year through your posts! I am a bit jealous that you have escaped the 16 degree weather in Cali!! I am sure you are having a wonderful time! I too feel like the empty nest is coming too fast, one gone another goes this year and my baby goes to high school. I felt a bit overwhelmed this year that time is flying by so fast and I need to catch my breath, but I feel better when I see i am not alone and we all go through these emotions. I wish you and your family a wonderful 2014 and good luck to your son with college!

Hi Tina,

This post made me cry… πŸ™‚ I spent a LOOOONG time here reading some posts I missed (loved seeing your home again! πŸ™‚ ) and you got me when you said we all should spend more time with our little ones…. I already do that, but I always feel I should be doing more and more for them… Don’t we, mothers, always feel this way? πŸ™‚

Lots of Love and Blessings in this new year to you and your family!


Luciane at

You are truly amazing and so inspiring! Love that you are giving back. I send you a HUGE hug on this Thanksgiving holiday and I am grateful for being your blogger friend! Little by little, I will be redecorating our house and I look to your blog for ideas.interior design

Tina, every time I visit, I leave feeling enchanted! True! I am so impressed with your sweet disposition and humble spirit and your stylish ways! Thanks so much for your wise words at the end of this post. You are a darling! Happy New Year!

Precious Tina!

How lifted up I feel as I see your comment on my post! I’ve had several friends who have emailed me to tell me that they can’t leave a comment from their ipads or tablets, but I so thank you for trying and getting in to leave me a word. I so miss your generous posts, but you are still in the land of the sun! Oh I cannot wait to hear about your trip! I was in Santa Monica….good heavens, what a dose of my childhood, and the SHOPPING! HAVE FUN my friend, and I will always blog. It’s too fun!

Much love, Anita

Hope you are having a most wonderful time in sunny CA, and wishing you and your family a very happy New Year 2014! Loved the links to previous posts, you have created so many beautiful treasures!

Happy New Year, Tina!!!!! I have been away from blogging for nearly 2 weeks – thinking it would be a nice break for me. But, found that I missed out on the “chats” and creativity we all share in this little corner of our world. I loved your year end highlights, which I need to remember to do next year! I so relate to your thoughts on 1) taking time with children and 2) everyone is battling something. So, 2 things I plan to do this year are 1) savor the days with my little ones, realizing that the years will fly and 2) being even more compassionate than I currently am, knowing that people do the best they can and to cut folks some slack. Wishing you a wonderful start to 2014.

xoxoxo Elizabeth

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