Thanksgiving side dishes: The new classics


by Kathryn Dean Posted in Homeowner resources /   November 14, 2012

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Thanksgiving wouldn't be complete without turkey, stuffing and buttery mashed potatoes. But what about the other side dishes? If you're hosting Thanksgiving this year and you're feeling adventurous, have someone else bring the standby green been casserole so you can whip up something new! These recipes offer a fresh take on the fixings:

Woman in kitchen, preparing Thanksgiving sides

Squash, Sage & Ricotta Cannelloni

Squash is in season this month, so it makes a perfect addition to your Thanksgiving table. The folks at Martha Stewart Living have created a rich cannelloni side dish that should get your guests' mouths watering.
Get the recipe »

Cauliflower Gratin

Good thing most people give up calorie counting on Thanksgiving day. This dish, featured in Food Network Magazine, includes heavy cream and shredded gruyere cheese. Delish!
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Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Mushrooms & Spinach

Marshmallows are out! Ricotta cheese, shallots and ground pepper lend a savory flavor to the sweet potatoes in this hearty dish spotted in Sunset Magazine.
Get the recipe »

Want more ideas? Check out all the great recipes we dug up this month on our PINTEREST THANKSGIVING RECIPE BOARD.

Need the dining room before you can host the big family meals? Start shopping for that dream home now! Search homes in your area »

3 smart improvements to sell your home


by Julia Miller Posted in For sellers /   November 6, 2012

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Looking for ways to boost your home's salability? Focus on these homebuyer hot-buttons!

1. Bathrooms: Bathroom remodels can often increase your home's resale value. Consider replacing outdated tubs, sinks, vanities, fixtures and flooring. Even basic maintenance tasks like re-caulking the tub, replacing old shower doors and applying a fresh coat of paint to the walls may make a difference. A few stylish touches like plush new towels and bathmats can help too.

2. Kitchen: Many times, the heart of the home can be the heart of a sale. Make sure countertops and flooring are in good shape. New cabinets are a great way to give the whole room a lift. If you're on a strict budget and can't afford to replace old wood cabinetry, you can sand and paint them for a fresh update. Other things to consider that may appeal to buyers: stainless-steel appliances and window treatments. Need some inspiration? Check out our Pinterest board, dedicated to the dream kitchens we love »

Attractive front porch

3. Exterior: It's just like the old saying, "You never get a second chance to make a first impression." Curb appeal should be a top consideration because it's the first thing potential buyers will notice. Make sure the lawn is in good shape and consider planting flowers or a tree. Keep your porch and patio swept clean, and your outdoor furniture in good condition. Even if your home is in good shape, there are still many things you can do to help make it more attractive to buyers. Start with a clean slate: scrub the walls, clean the carpets, wash the windows and shine hardwood floors. Repair anything that's broken—no matter how minor—so it doesn't discourage potential buyers. Need a fresh coat of paint? Check out our article about choosing interior paint colors for resale success »

As a finishing touch, stage rooms to show off their true potential. You can hire a professional to help, or try it on your own. Get a storage unit and clear out excessive clutter and personal belongings. Display furniture and décor in a way that makes the rooms feel inviting and warm while maximizing space. For more home staging tips, read about how the 5 senses can help you sell your home »  

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