Garden classes cover a variety of subjects

Galveston County Master Gardeners fruit tree sale: 8 a.m. seminar, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. sale at the Wayne Johnson Community Center, 4102 Main, La Marque;

Fruit Tree Class: with Jim Maas. 10-11:30 a.m. at Maas Nursery, 5511 Todville Road, Seabrook; register at $25 fee applied to fruit-tree purchase.

Fruits and Berries in the Garden: 10:15 a.m. at Cornelius Nursery, 1200 N. Dairy Ashford and 2233 S. Voss;

Mittleider Gardening: sponsored by Kingwood Garden Center. 10-11:30 a.m. at East Montgomery County Improvement District, 21575 U.S. 59 N., Suite 200, New Caney; 2-3:30 p.m. at Lone Star College Atascocita Center, 15903 W. Lake Houston Parkway.

Old Garden Roses, the Ultimate Plant:with Mike Shoup. 11:30 a.m. Master Gardener program and hamburger lunch at Texas AgriLife Extension, 3033 Bear Creek Drive; 281-855-5600, $5.

Gardening by the Square Foot: with Master Gardener John Jons. 6:30-8 p.m. at Galveston County AgriLife Extension Office, 4102 Main, La Marque; reservations, 281-534-3413. …read more

Via: Gardening


A Garage Addition Can Solve Your Storage Problems

For many Jacksonville residents, the garage is far more than a spot to park the car — it’s become more of a catchall for every outdoor item the family owns. Floridians spend a ton of time outside, so they often have to store their surfboards and windsurfers in addition to the normal gardening and lawn supplies you’ll find elsewhere.

If the accumulation of stuff is threatening to leave no room for your car, you can fix the problem by building a garage addition. It’s generally easier to add on than it is to build a new storage building. What’s more, adding space to the garage takes advantage of the security system you already have built on the structure.

A Bump-out

Much like a bump-out adds extra living space to an RV, a bump-out addition to your garage will add a surprising amount of much-needed storage space. The roof isn’t as high as the original building, so you don’t have to deal with an extremely large project, but you can create enough room to house a tool shop, storage for all your sports equipment, or even workspace for crafts or woodworking.

Most bump-out plans call for a wood foundation and simple rectangular design, and you can find kits at building supply companies that have all the materials and instructions in one place. If you can build a deck and install drywall, you can build a bump-out addition to help with your storage needs.

Storage Platform

Often, the items that fill up a garage’s space aren’t large, but rather a huge collection of smaller items. Each individual piece doesn’t take up much space; it’s the accumulation that gets to you. Adding a storage platform all around the garage interior provides enough storage space to clean up almost any mess, while never using up a bit of floor space. Create shelves that are two feet deep and hang them three feet below the ceiling. Make a ring of these shelves around the inside walls, then store a series of plastic bins to organize all the smaller items you need to store.


For the ultimate garage addition for storage space, consider a loft for your garage. Definitely not a DIY project, adding a loft adds an entire second story. You can use this space for massive amounts of storage or even transform it into living space or an office. Adding actual living space will require more insulation, wiring, and connecting into a house HVAC unit, while using it for simple storage space is a much simpler proposition: It only needs the same sun protection the rest of the garage enjoys. Adding a loft space is a practical and attractive way to add a lot more storage space and corral even the largest collection of tools, toys, and equipment.

Image Source: Morgue File

The post A Garage Addition Can Solve Your Storage Problems appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


How to Makeover Your Closet on a Budget

Last January my husband I started our hunt to buy our first home. In October we became homeowners. In that 10 month period we looked at countless homes online and ended up seeing around 30 in person. One thing that shocked me in nearly every house were the closets. In almost every home the closets were a mess with unmatched hangers, shoes thrown all over the floor and absolutely no organization.

Whether you are thinking about putting your home on the market this Spring or just looking to get organized there are several affordable steps you can take that will make your closet the best it can be without breaking the bank. Take a look at the video above and see how just a few changes can make all the difference.

The post How to Makeover Your Closet on a Budget appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


Home of the Week: A Home that ‘Rocks’ in Malibu

In our newest ‘Home of the Week‘ we move from the Bob Hope estate in Toluca Lake to a celebrity retreat in Malibu that seriously ‘rocks’.

This $3,250,000 million dollar estate is the living embodiment of our #HomeRocks hashtag, in that it is a home literally made of rock! The 1 bedroom and 2 bath home features 360 degree views of the Pacific Ocean, Channel Islands, Boney Mountains, Serrano Valley and the city lights of Los Angeles. The estate sits on 22 secluded acres that offer peace, serenity and an intimate connection with nature.

Sure, Fred and Wilma Flinstone would probably drool at this truly exceptional structure, but I’m guessing the stainless steel appliances and expansive glass windows letting those views in would appeal to the likes of George Jetson as well. The home’s interior space dramatically showcases the changing views from every room and also features a spacious and magical master suite.

While there’s much to do near this ideally located home, I’d personally love quiet nights by the wood burning fireplace…Flinstones style. #HomeRocks

Click here if you’d like to learn more about this truly exceptional property listed by Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.

The post Home of the Week: A Home that ‘Rocks’ in Malibu appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


Why Are There So Many Songs About Home?

Artists across all genres sing about “home.” What is it about this idea of home that makes it so popular among artists and lyricists?

Music is one of the most powerful and universal vehicles to represent and convey our inner emotions. It’s not only an important part of our cultural dialogue, but it also plays a key role in how we feel. Music can lift our spirits and in doing so, improve our quality of life. Music therapy has been used for centuries as a way to restore energy, improve mood, and even help the body heal. Research in The Journal of Positive Psychology and scientists at the University of Missouri found people can improve their mood and overall sense of happiness just by listening to upbeat music. Given all of these benefits, it’s interesting to observe how one of the most talked about topics in all music is this idea of “home.”

To create something that resonates with their audience, skilled lyricists communicate an intimate part of themselves. Writing a song from the heart is the best way to reach out and connect to an audience. Compelling descriptions about a touching experience are the most powerful way to bring listeners deeper into the artist’s world.

And that’s where the idea of home comes into the psychology of songwriting. If home truly is where the heart is, what better topic is there to communicate a message from the heart? When artists turn to experiences that shaped their lives, many times they turn home.

Homes carry unique emotional meaning for all of us. No matter who you are or where you’re from, home means something to you. Homes serve as the backdrop for our childhood memories as well as the background of the interpersonal dramas in our lives. Our homes hold an iconic status as a place we can always belong. A place we can always be ourselves, let our guard down and still be loved.

Music and home share some surprising parallels. Music has the power to unite people. It’s a language that seems to speak to who we really are. And it’s a language that is always evolving. So many emotions exist inside of our music, and there is an undeniable intimate and personal side to it.

All of this can also be said about home. Home unites friends and family. It’s a place we feel safe. It serves as a refuge from a chaotic world. It’s a place we can freely express our true selves. Much like the music we listen to, home communicates aspects about our ever-changing social identity, and it helps us communicate a private part of ourselves to those we choose to let into our world.

Why are there so many songs about home? When an artist looks to share an intimate part of his or her self, one of the first places they’ll naturally turn is “home.”

The post Why Are There So Many Songs About Home? appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


14 Lovely Valentine’s Day Decorating Ideas

entry 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas

January is almost over which means Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Get your house ready for the loveliest day of the year with these 14 Valentine’s Day decorating ideas.

Entry Table Chalk Board

Great for a countdown until kisses or daily love notes.


Heart Mirror

Something you can leave up year round.

heartmirror 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


XO Pillows

Perfect to add a little touch of love to your bedroom decor.

pillows1 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas

via Anthropologie

A Conversation Hearts Vase

The best part? You can eat your decor on Feb 15th!

candy 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


VDay Runner

We love the runner but how delicious do those macaroons look?!

runner e1390939205239 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Love Placemat

Perfect for a romantic dinner at home.

placemat e1390939324358 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


XO Wreath

Spread the love in your neighborhood.

wreathes 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Wall Art Cottage Sign

Another great piece that can be left up all year round.

3 cottage d cor love sign 7 pretty knick knacks to spice up a bland living room e1390937818578 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Drinking Glasses

These glasses are so sweet.

il 570xN.404181095 5gcy 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas

Heart Dishes

What is Valentine’s Day without candy? Serve up your goodies in style.

heartdishes e1390937279687 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Valentine’s Mantle

Add a little love to the focal point in the room.

mantle1 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Picture Frame

This also makes a great gift.

pictureframe 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Dish Towels

A simple, subtle way to add a little Vday decor into your kitchen.

dishTowels e1390937425611 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


Lalique Rouge Amour Vase

This luxurious vase is a good reminder to bring flowers home :) vase 14 Lovely Valentines Day Decorating Ideas


The post 14 Lovely Valentine’s Day Decorating Ideas appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


A Win Win Strategy for Decorating Your Child’s Room

Buying a home, whether it’s a family’s first house or a newer model, can be an exciting time for all involved. While parents may look forward to decorating their master bedroom or organizing a kitchen space to hold family dinners, kids may have their own “ideas” about how to creatively decorate their room. It is important for parents and children to work together so that the child’s room is unique to their taste while still reasonable for long term plans. This is especially true for young children who are likely to outgrow their own tastes and furnishings in a few years, according to the Wall Street Journal. There are several options and strategies available to parents that will allow them to avoid outrageous patterns, wall colors or fabrics while still striking a happy balance with their children. Take a look at how celebrity Kourtney Kardashian decorated her son’s room in a fun but tasteful way for her son Mason. (image via

Focus on the Big Furnishings

Children often change their tastes repeatedly over the years, meaning that last year’s princess-themed bedding set may change to pink leopard or demure pastels the next. To avoid spending money on new furniture and accessories each year, parents should focus on buying neutral furniture that can match a child’s changing style. Purchasing plain desks, chairs, headboards and dressers can serve as a base for any other type of small accent pieces, such as carpets, mirrors and decorations.

The same holds true for choosing a wall color. Instead of agreeing to paint the walls electric blue or hot pink, compromise with children on pale pink or baby blue to give them more options when it comes to changing the color or decorating their space.

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Once the bedspread, walls and furniture are taken care of, most children will decorate the rooms to their liking, with pictures, toys, books, ornaments and sports memorabilia representing most of their decorations, the Journal reports. This lets parents off the hook for purchasing more accent pieces and kids will have more freedom to decide where to put their personal items in their rooms.

Parents who are trying to avoid too much clutter in their kids’ rooms can also purchase colorful storage bins, small dressers and racks or shelves to both dress up the rooms and hold some their kids’ belongings. Storage bins that appeal to kids can be purchased inexpensively at several retailers, ranging from high-end furniture stores to big-box chains and home improvement stores.

The post A Win Win Strategy for Decorating Your Child’s Room appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


Real Estate Headlines Featuring Dexter, Midnight Red, Fredo and More

The Grammys were last night and the Super Bowl is less than a week away. Before you know it you’ll be realizing you don’t have a Valentine’s Day gift, but before you start questioning where the first month of 2014 has gone here’s your weekly dose of real estate headlines:

This might be the most useful article for homeowners who don’t live in Florida, Arizona or California: how to make walkways safe in icy conditions.

The Wall Street Journal has named their “house of the year” and it just happens to be the place where Fredo died in The Godfather, Part II.

This will blow your mind. Home owners in a typical zip code spend $1.9 million to remodel their homes.

Business Insider has 14 real estate terms that everyone should understand.

Home sales in 2013 were at the strongest level in 7 years.

Let’s see. You could buy an iPad air, a GoPro Camera, or 4 homes in Detroit.

Dexter didn’t make a killing on the sale of his home but star Michael C. Hall still got $2 million for his Hollywood Hills pad.

Have you seen how U.S. boy band Midnight Red reacted to winning the first ever Coldwell Banker #HomeRocks award? Two words: bubble wrap.

A family of four is living in a 168 sq. ft. home. The address? 2 Close For Comfort Street.

And finally, this home on an island 20 miles off the coast of Maine is an amazing green getaway.

The post Real Estate Headlines Featuring Dexter, Midnight Red, Fredo and More appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


Household Items Recycled Into Art

I love collecting art to add life to the walls of my home. I was so excited to return home this holiday season after a visit to Asheville, N.C., where I was finally able to purchase my first Michael Banks piece – an artist that I’ve been admiring forever. Every artist has their own unique way of expressing their visions, but when an artist finds a way to use recycled materials in that expression, it makes my heart sing. The Banks’ piece that now hangs in my living room, titled “He Like,” was painted an old kitchen cabinet door.

Every time I look at the piece I wonder whose house this door came from? What was stored behind the door in the home? The story that I’ve concocted is that it was a cabinet that hung high in a family’s kitchen with two young children. And behind the door was the cookie jar, that when no one was looking, a young boy and girl climbed up onto the countertop to sneak a treat. I believe that Banks must have felt the adventurous spirit of those kids when he initially looked at the old cabinet door and decided to bring their mischief back to life through his painting. I hope to one day meet him to discuss my theory.

There are so many artists out there using household items like reclaimed cabinets, doors, windows and more as the backdrop for their art. That got me thinking, where can homeowners who have discarded items, after a remodel for example, donate their items so that artists can turn trash into treasure? I found a list that can help some people locate organizations seeking to provide creators with donated items (scroll down to see organizations “Outside the Bay Area” for everyone who’s located outside of San Francisco).

So far I’ve been unsuccessful in locating any organization in my hometown like the ones on this list, but I do know that any Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore accepts gently used items such as furniture, home accessories, building materials, and appliances. Thanks to artists like Banks, our trash might end up in museums instead of the landfill. And if it doesn’t make it to a donation center, watch out cuz Molly Evans might LionelStichie it.

The post Household Items Recycled Into Art appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog


Stardom Starts at Home for These Cutie Pies

The release of our brand new commercial ‘Home Sweet Home’ has us at Coldwell Banker thinking about all things music and home! Get a look at this absolutely adorable video of two little girls, Zoe and Maddie, singing their hearts out to “Let it Go,” from the movie Frozen (Walt Disney Pictures).

This unique take on a music video, shot entirely out of the family’s living room, exemplifies in my mind two things. One is that talent showcases itself very early, and two–even the most renowned stars can trace back their success to humble beginnings performing at home. Home is the place many of us feel most comfortable and supported. This is definitely apparent in Zoe and Maddie’s performance, and they were appropriately dressed as princesses.

I cannot remember how many plays and musicals I put on for my family as a young child in my living room. I would create scripts, write songs, and rehearse my behind off. This was all in anticipation of the big day that my parents, stuffed animal friends, and dog would gather on the couch to watch me render my best example of a superstar at work. I swore I would be a singer or an actress, maybe both–the next Jennifer Lopez? Obviously that didn’t happen. As I got older, my mom brought me back to reality by telling me that I was completely tone-deaf and that my expectation of making it as the next American Idol was definitely not happening.

Maddie and Zoe however are something special. They look like they’ve got everything it takes it make it big, including most importantly the heart. I look forward to seeing them under the bright lights one day!

The post Stardom Starts at Home for These Cutie Pies appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

…read more

Via: Coldwell Banker Blog