Saturday, May 30, 2009

Frazzled Nerves Are A Given When Selling Your Home.....

Well, here I am, back on the real estate market....I'd almost rather have my nails pulled out with a pair of rusty pliers! Although that would be a feat in itself as I've worked so hard I have no nails left. You know the drill, clean every inch of the house, then head outside to repair damage the winter left in the yard. I haven't had time to even shave my legs or rather haven't had the energy to do it after the end of weeks of back-breaking labor around here.
And then we get the realtor over to work out a strategy for selling. Now we tried last year to sell, went thru the whole nine yards keeping the house ready at a moments notice to exit and let a group of strangers look in my closets. In the 6 months we were for sale last year we couple look at our house! Talk about despair. So hearing that the market was improving we once again called the realtor. We had a sit-down with her to talk about a new price, we were being realistic, we knew that prices were at rock bottom in our state, so we knew that we'd be in for a shock. And geez, we got more than that. Last year we priced the house for 439,000.00. In order to sell this year the realtor said we'd need to price at between 250,000 and 299,000......might as well have poked me in the eye with a sharp stick because it didn't hurt any less. The part that hurts so much is that our price isn't based on years of equity that we'd built up, but the actual money we'd invested in remodeling this fixer-upper we bought 3 years ago. We only want our money out of that such a horrible thing? I'm not trying to make a huge profit here, just want a little something to repay me for 3 years of back-breaking labor.
So, to make a long, boring story short, I've been so busy I have neglected my blog. Stay with me friends, I'll need you to help get me thru these days of nerve-racking craziness trying to sell my house. Till later.....

Monday, May 11, 2009

The "Don't Do It" of The Week

I love the old brownstones you see so many of, especially in the Eastern parts of the U.S. These brick or stone houses were built to last, and included many architectural features you just don't see anymore.
So why would anyone paint these lovely old stone buildings, especially such an outlandish color as this bubble gum pink. I simply don't understand this choice of color, it is garish and harsh on the eyes. There are certain color's that don't lend themselves to blending into a neighborhood, and pink is one of them.
So, if you are fortunate enough to own a brick or stone home, please think twice before painting it....there is probably a better way to update, refresh or accent it without adding paint to the stone. I'm just saying.....

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Grow Your Own Bay Tree

One of my favorite trees to grow is the Bay Tree, I use the leaves for cooking but the tree itself is such a pretty one that it can also be used for an ornamental.

The Bay tree is one that must be pruned unless you want it to grow to it's full potential, which is 40 ft. high by 32 ft. wide. The tree is best pruned in the fall, although I snip off leaves whenever I need them for cooking. The Bay loves a hot, sunny spot so anyone with a southern exposure should do fine with this tree. However, if you live where the wintertime weather has a hard frost you will need to move it inside.

The Bay loves to be pot bound, so planting in a 12" pot will hold for 6 years.

Use a whole bay leaf for all kind of soups, stews or sauces. Discard the leaf after cooking. The leaf also can be used for pickling, in seafood dishes and marinades.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The "Don't Do It" of The Week

If your lucky enough to have a fireplace in your place, I envy you! I don't have one in my current home and sure do miss the ambiance of having a fire flickering and sending off warmth. Not to mention all the wonderful opportunities a fireplace mantel gives for decorating.
The one thing you should never do though is use your fireplace hearth as an entertainment center, as in this picture. Now I have to ask, "who would do this"? Well, someone did and they must be desperate for a place to set that T.V. I think I would move my dresser out into the living room before I would hide my fireplace with this massive piece of electronics!
So, the moral to this story is, don't use your fireplace for anything other than having a fire, or for the display of a few little pretties, your space will thank you for it!