More than 70 remodeled homes, with projects ranging from whole-house renovations to mudroom makeovers, will be open Friday through Sunday in the Parade of Homes Remodelers Showcase. Remodeling professionals will be in the homes to answer questions. There also will be programs on kitchen design and other remodeling-related topics. Admission is free except for the three remodeled Dream Homes, which cost $5 to tour. Hours are noon to 8 p.m. Fri., noon to 6 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Pick up guidebooks at Twin Cities Holiday Station Stores or go to


If you haven't planted your spring bulbs yet, do it now. There's no reason to wait until it's finger-numbing cold outside. In fact, many spring-blooming beauties, including tulips, do better when planted earlier in the fall. There's no need to feed newly planted bulbs, but it's a good idea to water well after planting and mulch once the ground starts to freeze.


Top-notch gift wrappers can show off their skills and compete for $10,000 in the Scotch Brand Most Gifted Wrapper contest. To enter, go to www.MostGifted and explain (in 100 or fewer words) why you are a gift-wrapping guru. Be sure to include your best gift-wrapping tip and submit a few photos of how well you wrap. Eight finalists (four amateurs and four pros) will win a three-day, all-expenses-paid trip to New York City to compete in the final challenge Dec. 3 at Rockefeller Center. Entries are due by Oct. 18.


We introduce the first of our Beautiful Garden contest winners.