Surviving the Holiday Season

Can you believe that Thanksgiving has already come and gone? I hope that everyone had a wonderful time with family and friends, and heck, maybe even had the opportunity to put up your Christmas tree. Our tradition has been to do so, but with all of us traveling this year, we will be enjoying the tree in all of its glory this coming weekend.

As I sit  and think of the hectic days that are right around the corner and I ask myself, “What can I do to stay calm, enjoy every moment and not allow myself to be overwhelmed with everything the holidays bring?” I’ve learned over the years, that no matter how much I plan for perfection, something doesn’t go the way I had planned. So, the best advice I can seem to give myself is to just “go with the flow”, “roll at the hips”, “breathe in every moment”… if I can remind myself that nothing is perfect and its the imperfections that often make the best memories, I think I’ll survive yet another holiday season. Of course, this doesn’t mean that I won’t strive for everything to be as perfect as it can be for my loved ones… I just won’t beat myself up if the potatoes are over cooked or we run out of cider :) So, as I prepare for the hectic days to come, I will begin to follow my advice in my every day happenings and hope that it carries through.

That being said…. I so look forward to all of the wonderful things that the holidays bring… smiles and laughter, hugs and warm wishes, togetherness, great food, traditions and family… and because we are lucky enough to live in Florida, sunshine and warmth (which means some baseball catch in the back yard)! If I focus on these things, nothing can go wrong (fingers crossed).

Please feel free to share your ideas on keeping the holidays “stress-free” and allowing yourself to focus on the important things… would love to hear from you!

Thanksgiving Travel

As we quickly approach Thanksgiving Day, I’m sure lots of you are planning to travel to visit family and friends or have someone traveling to visit with you. As for me, I’m getting ready to make the 1,000 mile drive with my sidekick Sebastian (my little Maltese) to PA to be with my family for a bit while my boyfriend and his son are flying to CA to visit with family. We’re both traveling to colder weather, will encounter different delays, obstacles, and meet new people along the way. My wish for all of you is that no matter what type of travel and no matter where you are going, that you arrive there safely and are greeted with open arms and warm smiles. Enjoy your traditions and maybe start a new one… make memories, share stories, and most importantly cherish the time that you are sharing with those around you and enjoy the journey no matter where it will take you… after all, that’s what Thanksgiving is all about, right? What a great opportunity for all of us to show our gratitude and remind those special people just how much we love them and are thankful for them. May each of you feel the true meaning of Thanksgiving this holiday.

From our family at SaraBay to yours… we wish you a Blessed Thanksgiving.

Open Houses this Sunday, November 20, 2011… Don’t Miss Out!

This sunday, SaraBay will be holding several open houses for your viewing pleasure. Don’t miss out on seeing these fabulous properties from Noon to 3p.m. Bring the family, bring some friends… make an afternoon of it!

7303 Westmoreland Drive, Sarasota — Short Sale

Located just steps to maginficant sunsets with views of Sarasota Bay, this West of the Trail, custom-built, contemporary home will delight all. Enjoy your evening stroll under the canopy of grand oaks that line the winding roads to the bay front. Minutes from the world-renowned Ringling Museum, eclectic Art District in downtown Sarasota, and most desirable beaches in the world! Enter this splendid property through the custom gates to your circular paved driveway and then embark on a journey inside this majestic 4,300+ SQ. FT. home, where you are immediately encompassed by the grandeur of the space. Marvel from the second story balcony at family and friends gathering around the enchanting living room and fireplace, encircled by gorgeous wood floors and endless cathedral ceilings. The inclusive gourmet kitchen boasts Rosewood cabinets, granite counter tops, gas stove and a charming eat-in space. Ascent up the custom staircase to the bedrooms, where the sunrise will greet you each morning. Master bath is complete with jacuzzi tub and double vanities. Two additional bedrooms, 3 baths, den and an enormous 5 car garage complete this beautiful home.

MLS #M582537 Listed at $495,000

7219 Broughton Street, Sarasota — Short Sale

Revel in the magnificence of one of Sarasota’s Top 10 Most Beautiful Homes (SARASOTA Magazine, October 2009). Listed in the National Register of Historical Places and the Broughton Street Historical District. This is one of our local treasures. “This home was all our judge’s favorite. The giant oaks compete the beautiful picture – Asymmetry against geometry, dappled with sunlight” said Robert Plunkett, Senior Editor, SARASOTA Magazine. The spacious floor plan, with nearly all of the original interior features, hardwood & tile floors will transport you back to a time of elegance, with all of the comforts of today. Step outside into your private garden paradise including a covered patio, greenhouse, more than 200 species of plant life. Changing room with shower and a black lagoon pool & spa that will mimic your very own private mineral sprint. If that weren’t enough, the spacious guest cottage completes this Historic 1926 Mediterranean revival complete with fireplace and 2 car garage. Seller offering a culinary membership to famed Sarabay Country Club. Don’t let this one slip through your fingers!!

MLS #M5815550 Listed at $599,000

7218 Westmoreland Drive, Sarasota

Beautiful full bay front home in North Isles! Perfectly located between Sarasota and Bradenton with direct views overlooking Sarasota Bay. Walk through the front door into an open great room plan… Perfect for family gatherings or just relaxing to unlimited views of the water. The study could be used as a possible bedroom. The house is move-in condition, the landscaping is established and beautifully maintained! Once you make your way through the house — great dock complete with lift and oversized garage. A must see… to believe just how beautiful and inviting this home truly is!

MLS #M5824333 Listed at $850,000

602 Whitfield Avenue, Sarasota

Huge corner lot with circle driveway. This lovely mid-century home boasts a new kitchen with beautiful dark Cherry cabinets and extra drawer space. Gorgeous Corian counters and stainless appliances will keep the best cooks happy. The circular driveway has a “porte cochere” style 2-car carport with a storage room attached. Enter through the spacious covered lanai with beautiful Terrazzo flooring. French doors take you into the home. The large living room has a wood burning fireplace. The extra-wide hallway leads to 3 oversized bedrooms. The Master bedroom has sliders to an enclosed atrium which would be perfect for a secluded jacuzzi. The indoor laundry room, 16 x 16 ceramic tile floors and the slate flooring in the kitchen gives you a great head start on remodeling to suit your needs. The almost half acre lot with fruit trees is one of the largest in Whitfield. More than enough room to build the pool of your dreams.

MLS #M5824717 Listed at $149,900

435 Edwards Avenue, Sarasota

One block away from Sarasota Bay in the much sought after “West of the Trail” museum area, this mid-century “Old Florida” style home is nested in a secluded neighborhood with narrow winding streets and mature landscaping. Home has been lovingly updated, preserving much of its original vintage charm. Open and flexible interior features including ceramic tile floors, classic corner casement windows, solid wood cabinets and a warm, neutral color palette. Outdoor spaces include a secluded, tree-shaded “courtyard” patio and a newer (2010) free-from pool and paver block patio that overlooks a picturesque lake. Overvized 1 car garage with work area. Spectacular bay views of Longboat Key and the Ringling Museum & Asolo Theater are only a short walk away. Convenient to beaches, downtown Sarasota & Bradenton, St. Armands Circle and cultural facilities. Not your typical cookie cutter house or neighborhood! Owner may consider also selling adjacent lakefront parcel.

MLS #M5824982 Listed at $239,000

844 Magellan Drive, Sarasota

Thinking green? Then this is the home for you! Situated on a spacious 1/2 acre + corner lot on legendary Sarabay Golf Course. Enjoy the views while relaxing by your pool. Wide open floor plan with beautiful hardwood floors and charming fireplace greet you upon your entrance. Kitchen with granite counter tops and breakfast bar would make any chef envious! Three oversized bedrooms with 3.5 baths compete this golf course beauty. Bonus workshop, oversized 2 car garage with separate golf cart space provide more storage than you have ever dreamed of… Seller will provide culinary membership to prestigious Sarabay Country Club.

MLS #M5814486 Listed at $299,900

Selling Your Home in the Winter?

Depending on where you are, the winter months might bring added complications when it comes to selling your home. Ice, snow, cold, wind, hail… can all affect how quickly your home can sell over the winter months. Does that mean you should wait until the weather gets warmer? Absolutely not! There are simple and easy things that you can do to help the sell of your home. Read this great article found in our Realtor Mag which touches on these simple ideas to get activity around your listing even in the winter!


Traditionally, the time from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day can be some of the slowest time of the year for home buying due to the holidays and the often less-than-perfect weather. But that doesn’t mean sellers can’t sell during the winter months. In fact, with decreased inventories, sellers may have a better chance to standout and face a buyer pool with more urgency to settle down.

Experts offer some of the following tips for selling a home in the winter:

Stage it: Stagers can arrange furniture so that selling-points in a home don’t get overlooked, paint rooms inviting colors, and have the know-how to give a home a cozy winter feel. Display photos of the home that also show it in warmer summer months. And don’t forget to turn up the thermostat in the home so buyers are comfortable from the moment they step through the door.”If you have a vacant house in winter with the heat turned down to 50, chances are someone will make a very low offer,” Loren Keim, a real estate broker, told the Associated Press.

Price it right: “If it’s priced properly, it will sell any day of the year,” Katie Severance, a broker for RE/MAX in Upper Montclair, N.J., told the Associated Press.

Show the way: Keep sidewalks and driveways clear of snow, ice, and leaves–giving potential buyers a clear path to your listing’s front door.

Light it up: There’s less daylight in the winter months so it’s even more important to keep all the lights on as well as open blinds and drapes for natural light. Keep the home well-lit even when you’re not there so the home still looks inviting to passersby who drive by in the evenings after work.

Source: “Selling Your Home? Some Tips for the Off-season,” The Associated Press (Nov. 9, 2011)

11-11-11 Happy Veteran’s Day

What a great day to celebrate those men and women who have and continue to fight for OUR freedom. Imagine the courage it must take to wake up every day and promise to put your fellow American’s and our great nation before yourself. These men and women sacrifice time with their families so that we may wake-up every day, and put our feet on the ground without fear. Thank you brave soldiers for looking over us.

On this Veterans Day, we are celebrating those who have served our country. In honor of you…

Getting Back on Track

Hi all… it’s been awhile since I’ve posted a blog (shame on me!) and it just seemed like a good day to get back in the groove and back on track. Why wait until the New Year to make resolutions? If I start working on some of them now, my list won’t be quite so long when January 1 rolls around, right? :) I’m not only getting back on track with my blogging, but with other aspects of my life too… financial goals, fitness goals, family goals… Are there things that you might need to get back on track with too? Things that you could start doing right now? Join me in starting to “get back on track” and easing into the “New Year resolution” period that we all get excited about and then normally fall away from. We can do this!

So that being said, my first “new” blog is short because its focus is on this beautifully designed article that US Airways has placed in their current magazine… can I simply say “WOW”? It’s 48 color pages all about Sarasota!! What a spread! I’m including the link for it here so that you can all share in the glory of our great Sarasota! Enjoy :) and see you soon!!

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