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There’s really nothing more beautiful than sitting and admiring your beautifully lit Christmas tree.

I mean, you worked so hard to get the thing into the stand, made sure each and every single strand of lights worked properly, and took the time to adorn it with ornaments — so it’s only natural to spend a good bit of time staring at it during the holiday season.

But it’s important to remember that while they’re pleasing to the eye and fun for the whole family, Christmas trees are, in fact, trees — so take the necessary steps to keep them fresh, and make sure you aren’t creating any safety hazards.

1.Water daily — This should be a no-brainer, but make sure to check the tree’s water supply daily and always replenish it when it starts getting low. (They’re thirsty little suckers.)
2.Extinguish any candles that may be lit on or around the tree.
3.Make sure all lights bear the UL mark of safety before stringing them around your tree.
4.Always unplug lights when you are sleeping or away from home. (Or put them on a timer so they don’t stay on 24 hours a day.)
5.Saw off the base of the tree before putting it in the stand so it will better absorb water.
6.Add an aspirin tablet or a few pinches of sugar to the water — some say this helps the tree last longer.
7.Always keep trees away from heaters that will dry them out.

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Metro Atlanta, the South’s Melting Pot

Atlanta is ranked about 33 in the list of largest US cities, but jumps all the way up to around 10 when you start talking metropolitan areas.  This is because Atlanta is truly made up of many “neighborhoods” or areas.  There isn’t just Downtown, there’s Midtown, Buckhead, Sandy Springs, Forrest Park, Smyrna, College Park, Stone Mountain, and so many more.  Each smaller neighborhood inside of Metro Atlanta has its own individual and distinct characteristics based on location, amenities (such as Stone Mountain having the Mountain), and sometimes even demographics such as Decatur being more young professionals than retirees.  One thing is for sure, Metro Atlanta has something for everyone.

In the coming days my goal is to go through and highlight some of the top neighborhoods in Metro Atlanta.  Whether you are single, have a family, retired, or working, we all want to be somewhere that feels like home.  So if this can in any way help you to find that place to call home, then I want to help you get there.  Stay tuned to find out which area/city I choose first….

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My first thoughts of winter, Brr…


There sure has been a drastic change in the weather here in Georgia in the last couple of days, as in most of the country.  And though I know we will warm up a bit at least one more time before the cold is here to stay a while, it got me thinking about turing on the heat, making a pot of chili, and snuggling up in a blanket in front of a warm fire. 

Then came the ugh!  Power bill is about to skyrocket yet again… Though we get a small repreeve from high energy bill in the fall, it is never long enough.  This got me thinking about ways to save money on the energy bill, so I have complied two lists.  The first list is easy ways to save for year round usages, and the second is more peak season tips.  I hope this is helpful to you all…

Electricity Conservation

Probably the easiest place to save money on “energy” is by reducing the electricity consumption.  Here are a few simple steps to start reducing yours
Step 1:  Turn off lights that are not being used. (Each year we waste a tremendous amount of electricity by leaving lights on in rooms we are not occupying.)
Step 2:  Convert your incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent light bulbs. (Today’s CFL’s are very affordable and available in many shapes, styles and colors. For example, you can buy the GE 13-Watt Energy SmartTM – 8 Pack – 60 watt ouput from Amazon for $12.69 or $1.59 each. The beauty of switching to CFL’s is the bulbs last 8 times longer than an incandescent bulb.)
Step 3:  Unplug electronics when not in use or use a “Smart” Power strip. (Computers, TV’s, DVD players, printers, fax machines and many more consumer electronics all use power even when they are switched “off”. An easy way to save electricity is by using a Smart Strip LCG3 Energy Saving With Autoswitching Technology. These new technology power strips monitor the electronics connected to them and completely shut down the power when the electronics are switched off.)

Fuel Conservation

The biggest use of home energy is due to heating and cooling our homes.   Here are a few relatively inexpensive ways to reduce your usage:
Step 1:  Install a programmable thermostat.  Programmable thermostats range in price from about $40 up to $500.
The key to saving money with a programmable thermostat is to turn down the heat or air conditioning when you’re not in the room or awake. By turning back the temperature 10 to 15 degrees when you sleep or are away you’ll be able to save 10% to 15% annually on energy costs.
Step 2:  Use window treatments to save heat. Thermal Curtains are very reasonably priced and decorative. Think of window treatments as putting on a sweater or jacket when you’re cold. In the summer time window treatments can help keep out the hot as well.
Step 3:  Install a Chimney Balloon® in the flue when you’re not using the fireplace. These inexpensive inflatable balloons prevent heat from rising up the flue and out of your house.
Step 4:  Lastly, air seal your home. Foam Guns are really great for spraying foam into small gaps, crevices and spaces in your houses frame. Take the time to seal around utility penetrations, door and window openings and any place you can see or feel air movement. Caulking around window and door trim will also help seal your home from drafts and cold air.

Home Energy Savings Tips Summary

Home energy savings can be accomplished with lots of small easy to do home improvement projects. By tackling several of these easy projects each year you’ll be able to reduce your energy consumption and ease the pain on your wallet.

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Hello world!

This is a place where you can find not only a great source for all your real estate needs, but a lifetime partner.  When I think back on all the homeowners that I have helped buy and sell their homes, I am reminded of not only the real estate transactions, but the marriages built, the babies born, and the lives that I have been blessed to be apart of.  In my 33 years, I have found many more friends, and additional family members than I can count.   The reason for this is that I don’t just help you buy or sell a house, I help you find your HOME.  Whether it is a one time transaction that you buy and live in for 30 years, or it is the first of many, it is one of the most important decisions you will ever make.   I love being blessed to be apart of that with you.  I feel as though I become invested as well, so I want to make sure that you are taken care of from the first moment and long after we turn over the key.

This may be as simple as helping you find a near by cleaners to as indepth as helping you weed through all the legalese of the contracts.   Whatever it may be I want you to know I am here to listen, give advice, and whatever you might need.

In this blog you will find all kinds of tips, links and suggestions that will help you as a homeowner, buyer, or seller.  I want to be able to walk with you through all your phases in life, whether you are buying, selling, or staying right where you are, you will find useful informtion available to you.

Thank you for taking the time to let me into your life and your home,