Welcome and cheers to a New Year and to a new look at the latest in home fashion trends, colors and decorating. Will 2019 be a year of change for you and your home décor? Are you selling, buying building remodeling or making minor changes? If so, you'll find interest in the following information regarding the latest in furniture and home fashions. If you're enjoying your surroundings exactly as they are, then you should still find interest in what's in for '19! 

When Brenda Frecka and her husband Dave sat down with her doctors in July of 2017, there were a lot of questions flying around the room concerning her newly diagnosed cancer. What type? Breast cancer. How aggressive? Extremely. Treatment plan? Chemotherapy, surgery and radiation. How long does treatment last? About a year, if all goes well. 

Now, Brenda also knew that some questions would be coming her way from the doctors and nurses, and she was more than ready for them. Was she prepared for this battle? You bet. Does she have a strong support network? The best! What is that network? Her faith and her family. 

Bohemian. The age of the reader of this column might have bearing on the thought or definition that comes to mind when seeing that word. A Baby Boomer might be thinking of the hippie counter culture of the late 1960s. Older folks might be thinking of stories read about the turn-of-the-century European writers and artists. Millennials even have their own blended version of bohemian, boho for short. 

Wikipedia states, "The term has become associated with various artistic or academic communities and is used as a generalized adjective describing such people, environs or situations: bohemian (boho - informal) is defined in The American College Dictionary as 'a person with artistic or intellectual tendencies, who lives and acts with no regard for conventional rules of behavior.'" 

At the end of State Route 13, the 10th longest state route in Ohio, sits the quaint town of Huron. Named as one of America’s Coolest Small Towns by Budget Travel magazine, Huron offers birding, boating, beaching and many other great activities for those who visit or live within its borders.

Along the shores of Lake Erie in this town are neighborhoods like Nickel Plate, Old Homestead on the Lake and Chaska Beach, full of permanent and warm-weather residents alike who enjoy activities both on the water and off. If you wander the area and stop for a chat with the beachcombers or bike riders, you’ll find a repetitive response when inquiring where folks live when the weather turns cold and the cottages close up for the season … “Richland County, Mansfield,” they say.

Hashtags. Isn’t it interesting how a symbol that was generally only thought of as a number sign has become one fo the most recognized ways of connecting like-minded ideas or thought to people all over the world?

Forever Home. It's the trending term couples are using to describe their permanence of residence. While it might have a newness of term, the idea has been long desired, somewhat expected with past generations. Couples would purchase homes, raise families and then remain there until end of life or end of ability to live independently. What would happen or where one would go if health declined would often be met with trepidation, with the words "nursing home" sending ripples of fear throughout the strongest of folks. But, like terms, times have changed, and the options for people needing to leave their forever homes has grown with exciting possibilities.

They say nothing is constant but change, and that applies to businesses as well as personal lives. For over ninety years, the McCready family has embraced that change and moved ahead.

In 2017, we couldn't help but become overwhelmed by the devastating events that occurred at the hands of Mother Nature and mankind. We ran at a faster and faster pace, trying to keep up with technology and the "social media Joneses.” We were bombarded with flash sales and pop-up events, and we found ourselves exhausted by politics, media and the search for affordable healthcare. No wonder why experts discuss the idea that our society is suffering from their own form of PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), and why we are hearing the term Hygge being used more and more often.

1949... four years after the end of WWII, when men had returned home from the war, married their sweethearts, and together were creating what would become known as the baby boomer generation. Prefabricated homes were being built as quickly as possible; neighborhoods were sprouting up everywhere. Couples excitedly purchased the small, newly constructed houses and settled into their communities where their children grew up riding bikes down the middle of streets and played hide-and-seek in each other's backyards. It wasn't a popular thought at the time for newlyweds to consider taking on a "fixer-upper" project like we see today. But that was exactly what happened for one young couple and a very worn-down barn in the springtime of 1949.

Dale Anne Featheringham, DDS has been providing the families of Mansfield and Wooster with quality orthodontic treatments since 2006. She has built a reputation of having a friendly, family­ oriented and professional practice where you can expect the most efficient and comfortable orthodontics. Dale Anne believes that building personal relationships with patients creates a deeper desire to want to exceed their expectations - and it is how she's been able to define success smile after smile. In 2016, Dr. Featheringham formed a partnership with two other trusted orthodontists to create Trio Orthodontics. The Trio team has seven locations in Ohio: Circleville, Dublin, Mansfield, Powell, Upper Arlington, Westerville and Wooster.

Sitting atop one of the many beautiful rolling hills of southern Richland County is the newly built home of JJ and Alison Burkhart. When standing on their multi-tiered porches or gazing out one of many windows, the views of Bellville, Ohio and the lands beyond are ones that inspire the desire to "sit a spell" with this lovely couple and their son, Hutch. Though difficult to take one's eyes away from the views, once done, it's even more inspiring to inspect the interior of the home itself and the attention to detail on all fronts.

What comes to mind when you think of the word farmhouse? For most, the major themes that are associated with that word would be function, comfort and simplicity. Sturdy and well-built, farmhouses have dotted roadsides across America for hundreds of years. They've provided functionality by allowing a farmer to be close to their animals and crops. They've provided comfort from the howling storms that raged across the prairies as settlers built the West. And they've beckoned a simpler way of living through floor plan and decoration. For a long period, only the farmers and their families who inhabited them paid attention to such a home. However, most recently, Americans of all ages and occupations now desire to update and inhabit what they are calling "the modern farmhouse".

Kitchen renovations continue to rank as one of the most frequently chosen remodeling projects in homes across America.  According to the National Association of Home Builders, 79% of homeowners seeking to refresh an area are choosing their kitchens, and they are emulating culinary environments that are trending on television shows and in home decorating magazines.  The modern farmhouse trend, with its painted cabinetry, quartz countertops, wood floors and gadgets galore is taking center stage in re-dos that are revitalizing the heart of the home for cooking, entertaining and enjoying life.

Napa Valley, California has a history of winemaking that dates back to the 1830s. The valley is not only rich in the expected vineyards, but also has an abundance of agriculture from livestock, floral, nursery and vegetable producers to the possibly unexpected olive growers. Mountains surround the hilly countryside where varieties of grapes grow in scenic rows, with those varietals of grapes being developed from transplanted species from around the world. Millions of visitors gather yearly in the Napa region to experience the beauty, food and wine. Much fewer numbers call the area their home. Residents with a sense of humor refer to themselves as “Napkins,” while others prefer the term “Napans.” While some are native to the area, like many of the grapes growing nearby, most residents are transplants as well.

Gifts can come in all sorts of ways... as boxes wrapped colorfully in paper and bows, as positive words of praise and affirmation or possibly as a monetary gift. I bet you can still close your eyes and vividly see a gift that you received during your childhood. How about a time someone said something so nice about you that it touched your heart? Did a family member or loved one give generously financially to you on a special occasion? Yes, gifts are given in many ways. Most times they are given individually, but sometimes many people can benefit, especially when it comes in the form of a community gift. In 2016, Ohioans of both land and air received a gift of sorts from the city of Mansfield at the Mansfield Lahm Regional Airport.