Mercer’s Garden Faire a two-day family event

Galveston County Master Gardeners program with Heidi Sheesley. 9–11 a.m. at the Wayne Johnson Community Center, 4102 Main, La Marque; aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/ galveston. Autumn container gardening clinic: 10:15 a.m. at Cornelius Nursery, 1200 N. Dairy Ashford and 2233 S. Voss; calloways.com/clinics. Fall festival with plant societies, local artists specializing in garden art, children’s activities. 8 a.m.-4 p.m. at Mercer Arboretum and Botanic Gardens, 22305 Aldine-Westfield, Humble; 281-443-8731; hcp4.net/mercer. Build your own compost barrel workshop: 1-3:15 p.m. and 3:30-5:45 p.m. at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center, 4501 Woodway; 713-681-8433; register at houstonarboretum.org. $80 members, $95 nonmembers. Share homegrown vegetables and fruit; fill out form for pickup at pearlandcommunity gardens.com. Drop off donations 8 a.m.-noon on the second and fourth Saturdays at the Pearland Community Garden booth, Pearland Old Townsite Farmers Market, 2243 N. Grand Blvd., Pearland. Gardeners by the Bay Garden Club meeting. 9 a.m. at University Baptist Church, 16106 Middlebrook Drive, 281-474-5051. Nottingham Country Garden Club meeting. 9:30 a.m. at the Municipal Utility Building 81, 805 Hidden Canyon Drive, Katy; 281-579-7017; nottinghamgardenclub.org. Organic Horticulture benefits Alliance-Texas AgriLife event. 7:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at Texas AgriLife Extension, 3033 Bear Creek Drive.

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Via: Gardening

    

This is Home with Rapping Kids

thisishome This is Home with Rapping Kids

The Coldwell Banker Life, Camera, Action YouTube contest provided some amazing videos of kids, pets and homes from across the country. Actually the videos with pets vs. the videos with kids was pretty much a 50/50 split. The 10 finalist videos were all pretty amazing. It was fun to see the different takes on what makes a home so special. Some were touching. Some were humorous. But the winning video was just plain adorable.

I dare you to watch this video without smiling. The $25,000 grand prize winning video above is called “This is Home” but affectionately here at the Coldwell Banker office we refer to it as “Rapping Kids.” It’s quite simply one of the sweetest and entertaining videos about home that you’ll ever see.

The video comes to us from the Johnson family of Henderson, NV where dad, Jeff, is a schoolteacher and his wife, Suzanne, runs her own business out of their home. Their twins, Liam and Elle, will turn 4 in December and have easily the brightest music career imaginable ahead of them.

I talked with Jeff about the inspiration for the video and he said the song was something he was actually working on for a few months and when he heard about the Coldwell Banker contest it gave him the motivation to finally complete what he had started.

As you can imagine choreographing twin 3 year old’s while also trying to get them to sing the right words is quite a task and the video take more time than expected to get done which didn’t give them much time to get votes before the contest ended. But thanks to a late push in voting by friends and family their video was able to make it into the top 10 finalists.

We wondered how a high school social studies teacher manages to find time to create rap songs and shoot music videos, but Jeff explained this is something he enjoys doing as projects. Well Jeff, this project just paid off.

The Johnson family moved into their current home just over 2 years ago when they quickly realized their home at the time that had only 2 bedrooms wouldn’t quite work for their growing family. So the winnings from the contest they hope to put towards redoing their backyard as they’ve had some plans for it in their minds but didn’t think they’d be able to see them come to fruition.

I’m hoping their plans involve a water slide and perhaps a basketball court, but whatever they end up doing I’m sure Liam & Elle will love it.

Take a look at the video above to see “This is Home” and add a smile to your day. And if you really want a smile, watch the video below and see the kids’ reaction to being told they won the contest:

The post This is Home with Rapping Kids appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

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Favorite Videos from Life Camera Action Contest: Dear Poppy

dearpoppy Favorite Videos from Life Camera Action Contest: Dear Poppy

Yesterday we highlighted an adorable and playful take on an “open house” that was submitted as a video in the Coldwell Banker Life, Camera, Action contest. Today, we’re featuring another video that missed out on becoming a top 10 finalist, but might be one of the most touching videos that was submitted.

“Dear Poppy” is a simple story told through black and white photos and simple title screens, but is sure to stir your emotions. It shares the journey of one couple who found each other, then their dream home, but it wasn’t until someone else came into their lives that their house became a home.

Take a look at “Dear Poppy” and have some tissues nearby just in case. I’m not saying that I need them…ok maybe I did.

You can watch the top 10 finalist videos at youtube.com/coldwellbanker and come back tomorrow to see who will be named the $25,000 grand prize winner!

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Favorite Videos from Life Camera Action Contest: Open House

The Coldwell Banker Life, Camera, Action YouTube contest has officially closed and the 10 top vote-getting finalists have been named. While the grand prize winner won’t be announced until Friday, there are a couple of videos that we really enjoyed that just missed out on getting into the top 10 that we were still some of our faves.

The video above, titled “Open House”, is one of those videos. This video was submitted by Fiorella Occhipinti from La Crescenta, CA and has one of the breakout stars in the Life, Camera, Action contest as the lead.

“Open House” is a take on what a real estate agent showing off a new listing would look like from a child’s perspective. What you get is an adorable mix of cuteness and humor. Nice job Fiorella.

Take a look at the video above or head on over to the Coldwell Banker International Film Festival at films.coldwellbanker.com to see this video and other videos about home during the month of September.

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Via: Coldwell Banker Blog

    

World’s Most Expensive Homes: Quixote Winery Estate

quixote winery Worlds Most Expensive Homes: Quixote Winery Estate

Napa Valley. Those two words immediately make you think of vineyards, beautiful scenery and good eating. The capitol of wine country in California also is home to our next episode in the Coldwell Banker series, World’s Most Expensive Homes.

Today we go inside the Quixote Winery Estate to see a home that is truly one within its surroundings as well as explore the amazing winery that is the only Friedensreich Hundertwasser building in America.

Set on a lake and positioned perfectly amidst the vineyards for its winery, the Quixote Winery Estate is one of the most unique properties you’ll come across in the Napa Valley. Listed by Cyd Greer with Coldwell Banker Brokers of the Valley, the home not only offers the luxury of your own winery, but also some pretty spectacular views.

Check out Episode 4 of the Coldwell Banker series World’s Most Expensive Homes by watching the video above.

The post World’s Most Expensive Homes: Quixote Winery Estate appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

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Real Estate Headlines for the First Week of Autumn

The first day of fall has come. Leaves will soon be falling. Sweaters will be removed from those air tight bags in the back of the closet. The evenings will get darker a little bit quicker. And playoff baseball will soon be upon us. Welcome to the wonderful world of fall, but before you succumb to your urge to carve a pumpkin here’s your weekly dose of real estate headlines.

Our post on the home of Walter White from Breaking Bad has gotten a ton of attention this week. If you missed it, click here to give it a read.

Comedy genius Bob Hope has his home up for sale for a cool $27.5 million.

Here are 4 reasons to buy a home in 2013 and not wait until 2014.

Gen Y is the most upbeat about property prices…in Australia.

Think you spent a lot of money this weekend? A Middle East buyer just went on a $40 million Vancouver property spending spree.

Home inspection for sellers? AOL Real Estate shares why it’s worth it.

One history buff lives in a Victorian home and owns a medieval castle that he turned into a winery.

Here are 5 seriously interesting and unusual real estate listings from Canada this year.

The post Real Estate Headlines for the First Week of Autumn appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

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World’s Most Expensive Homes Hits the Virgin Islands

estate at spring bay Worlds Most Expensive Homes Hits the Virgin Islands

In the Coldwell Banker web series World’s Most Expensive Homes, we’ve started off in the U.S. visiting the Versace mansion in South Beach and then hiking up to Aspen to explore the incredible Jigsaw Ranch. Now in Episode 3, we step outside the continental U.S. and head to the Caribbean to visit the paradise of St. Thomas.

The Estate at Spring Bay is the focal point of this latest episode which contains some of the most incredible and beautiful footage ever displayed in a real estate video. From the private beach to the multiple pools to the ridiculous sunset views, the Estate at Spring Bay is the definition of paradise.

Listed by Amy Land-de Wilde with Coldwell Banker Island Affiliates, this home is an island treasure. Step inside the Estate at Spring Bay by watching Episode 3 of the World’s Most Expensive Homes from Coldwell Banker.

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Making Sense of Backyard Fencing

Privacy concerns, swimming pool requirements, and pet boundaries are just a few of the reasons you might install backyard fencing on your property. Or you may simply subscribe to the old adage, “good fences make good neighbors.” Regardless of your motives, before undertaking the investment, it is wise to research local regulations and to carefully consider the types of backyard fencing available in relation to the specific goals that you have in mind for your project.

No Fencing Needed?

In Las Vegas, block walls surround individual properties in many subdivisions. A Las Vegas Sun article addressed the reasons why this exterior design element is prevalent in the majority of neighborhoods. In the 1970s, this construction trend was initially aimed at buffering traffic noise for residents of subdivisions adjacent to city streets. In later decades, smaller lot sizes further promoted the block wall as it provided separation between yards that would otherwise lack privacy.

Yes, Fencing Needed

Perhaps your home sits on a large custom lot with no fabricated walls, or you live in a vintage neighborhood that predates the block wall standard. If so, begin your quest for backyard fencing by researching city building requirements. For the City of Las Vegas, fill out a Single Lot Wall application. The City of Henderson also requires a backyard wall building permit. The City of North Las Vegas specifies that permitting is necessary only if you want to construct a block or masonry wall or a fence that is over six feet in height. Your fencing contractor will know the building codes pertaining to various types of fencing in your zone.

You may like the idea of block wall perimeters because they provide privacy and are a sturdy deterrent against unwanted visits from coyotes or other desert wildlife. If you simply wish to soften its visual impact, consider climbing vines or other trees and shrubbery that effectively create a natural facade and offer some cooling effects from the sun’s heat on the block wall hardscape. If your budget allows, you can always apply stucco as many community associations do with exterior facing walls. If you want to break with convention, consider PVC, aluminum, or wood fencing.

Backyard Fencing for Pool Homes

Pool safety is a common reason for fencing in a back yard, regardless of existing block wall perimeters. If you have a block wall, it may need to be raised to comply with wall/fence height requirements around pools. Southern Nevada Pool Codes do not require child safety fencing for a pool, however, provided you install an audible door alarm and self-closing latches on gates at all access points to the yard. Even so, if you have young children living in your home or visiting frequently, fencing would be a prudent addition. Some companies specialize in this type of fencing, which is designed …read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog

    

Master Gardener plant sale and garden demonstrations set for today

Preview 8 a.m.; plant and book sale, how-to garden demonstrations 9 a.m.-noon at AgriLife Extension Office, 3033 Bear Creek Drive; 281-855-5600, hcmga.tamu.edu. With Jason McKenzie. 10 a.m. at the Arbor Gate, 15635 FM 2920, Tomball; 281-351-8851; arborgate.com. Texas gardening with fall flowers clinic: 10:15 a.m. at Cornelius Nursery, 1200 N. Dairy Ashford and 2233 S. Voss; calloways.com/clinics. Build your own rain barrel workshop: 1-3:15 p.m. or 3:30-5:45 p.m. at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center, 4501 Woodway; 713-681-8433; register at houstonarboretum.org. $80 members, $95 nonmembers. Fall festival with plant societies, local artists specializing in garden art, children’s activities. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Mercer Arboretum and Botanic Gardens, 22305 Aldine-Westfield, Humble; 281-443-8731; hcp4.net/mercer. Organic Horticulture Benefits Alliance-Texas AgriLife event. 7:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at Texas Agri- Life Extension, 3033 Bear Creek Drive.

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“Ghar” (Home) – A Woman Dreams of What Her Home Will Be

Ghar” is the Indian word for home and its namesake is the grand prize winning video from the Coldwell Banker/MoFilm video contest. It is a powerful and moving narrative about the dreams of a newly married woman who envisions what her home will be like as she starts a new family and future.

Besides the stunning cinematography and memorable scenes, the film struck a particular chord with the team at the Madison, NJ headquarters because it represents a modern approach and take on traditional customs that have been passed down for generations in India.

According to a few of our Coldwell Banker Real Estate colleagues who were born in India, the young couple incorporate time honored rituals such as the putting of powder on the floor and having the wife “cross the threshold”, but they do so in their own uniquely modern way. It shows that no matter where life takes us, our traditions, childhoods and customs are intrinsically a part of who we are.

David Marine and I had the opportunity to meet with the power co-directing duo of Aashini Shah and Vishwesh Kolwalker in Chicago as we honored them for their fine work on this film. They were extremely grateful for the opportunity share and celebrate their communities, homes and stories with the world through the Coldwell Banker International Film Festival.

“We were very excited when we read the brief for the Coldwell Banker contest. It gave us an opportunity to make something close to our hearts, that would represent our community and traditions. We both came up with different concepts which had nuances of our day to day life. Shooting the ad itself was like a celebration; celebration of festivals and childhood memories as well as a woman’s spirit.” – Aashini Shah

Join us at films.coldwellbanker.com for a look at “Ghar” – a film about what we envision home and family to be.

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Via: Coldwell Banker Blog