Credit: Jim Bartsch

If you traveled with me last week, you know that I was in southern Mexico, swimming with dolphins and relaxing on the warm, sunny beach. Coming home to Santa Barbara has been an extra-chilly shock. I had to wear my wooliest socks, warmest sweater, and fuzziest slippers today. I even turned on the heat in my house for the first time in two years. I’ve never coveted a fireplace quite this much. Check out this tour of beautiful fireplaces from our columnist Keith Hamm. Be forewarned: it may make you burn with envy. 


Credit: Veronica Crawford

If it’s December, we must be decorating. Whether you trim a traditional tree, string lights up to the rooftop, or throw some tinsel on a potted palm, most of us are getting jolly with the holly this time of year. I tend to do a mild-to-medium amount of decorating each season, often at the last minute. When I do get inspired to put up lights or garland, I almost always have to replenish my hanging supplies. Here are some nifty tricks for decking the halls using ribbon, fishing line, putty, or even existing objects. Be kind to your walls and cut down your post-Christmas clean-up time by using one or all of these tips.

This edition of The Home Page was originally emailed to subscribers on February 4, 2024. To receive Sarah Sinclair’s real estate newsletter in your inbox each Sunday, sign up at independent.com/newsletters.


Credit: Rafael Bautista

More years than not, when I was growing up, my sisters and I swore we could hear the sleigh bells as Santa and his reindeer flew toward our house on Christmas Eve. We never saw the jolly old elf or his four-hooved friends, but that wasn’t for lack of trying. My friend Laurel Abbott has a talent for selling houses that have amazing views. Her current listing at 1110 Alameda Padre Serra is a dramatic mid-century modern home that was specifically designed to showcase views of our coastline. The kitchen, living room, dining room, primary bedroom suite, and home office each showcase a different vista, “creating a dynamic display of city lights and glistening shoreline.” Santa is going to make the nighttime sky even more dynamic next week. Contact Laurel to learn about making this house — and this view — your own.


Credit: Kristy Bertuzzi

I fell in love with my friend Kristy’s Craftsman house long ago. It’s been in her family for generations, and Kristy painstakingly restored it before, during, and after she moved in. It was one of the first houses I wrote about for our Make Myself at Home column back in the summer of 2015. Owning a vintage house can involve an ongoing series of projects, and Kristy and her husband, Reno, always seem to be in the middle of something fun at the house. This season, their home boasts an impressive array of Christmas lights. Located in the 2000 block of State Street, make sure to cruise by on your way to see the huge Christmas tree in the middle of State near the Arlington Theater. It’s sure to lift your holiday spirits!

However you’re celebrating this holiday season, make sure to take some time with this week’s issue. It’s full of happenings, stories, and ways to make your spirits even brighter.

Support the Santa Barbara Independent through a long-term or a single contribution.


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.