I love this time of year. The weather is finally cooling down and the calendar of local events is jam packed with things to do. As someone that is passionate about the outdoors, I’m ready to come out of summer hibernation and take advantage of Louisiana’s (albeit short) fall season. With milder temps, our focus typically shifts to sprucing up our outdoor areas or preparing our homes for the holidays. And this issue is chock-full of ideas and inspiration for your home. 

Earlier this year, my husband and I became first-time homeowners — something neither one of us believed would ever be possible. But with persistence and hard work we made our dream a reality. Not fans of moving, we’re pretty sure this will be our forever home, however, we know our 50-year-old home will need some updating, love and care — a task we take great pride in. In fact, we took the DIY approach to updating our kitchen with new cabinets, countertops and backsplash. The work has been well worth it. 

Lisa Willard, project manager with Ashley’s Building & Construction, is an expert in home remodels and design. She shares some of her latest projects and the transformations are remarkable. If you’ve recently remodeled or renovated your space, we would love to see it. Send your before-and-after images to [email protected] to be included in an online photo gallery. 

In September, we had the pleasure of meeting Tanya McMaster and learning about her beautiful and unique Victorian style home. Located in South Shreveport, the home breathes life and every piece has a story. Read more about the McMaster home and Tanya’s incredible eye. 

Writer Scott Anderson has been busy following the career paths of local athletes now playing professional football in the NFL. From Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott to Morris Claiborne with the New York Jets, these young men are making their hometown proud — on and off the field. 

One more thing: Halloween is around the corner. If you plan on taking your children trick-or-treating, be sure to put safety first as you venture from door-to-door. Bring a flashlight, wear comfortable footwear and walk in groups. And if you partake in a little adult fun, don’t drink and drive.