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Crystal Beach - Florida Living At It's Best! - 11/30/10 02:05 PM
Living in Crystal Beach is indeed Florida living at it's best! With no traffic lights, this beach community reminds me of days long past. Life in Crystal Beach is quiet - a laid back life where the locals either walk or use their golf cart to get around.
There is no rush to get anywhere. Many locals have their own business. Many work from home. You will find artists, fishing guides, golf pros, doctors, lawyers, a realtor or two, teachers and many who are simply retired and enjoying all that Crystal Beach Florida has to offer!
If you are looking (2 comments)
St Nikolaus Day Is December 6th - Are You Ready? - 11/30/10 01:21 PM
My two angels (now mature adults) were born in Germany. There St Nikolaus Day is celebrated every year on December 6th. When my two were little ones we were living in Spardorf, a town just on the outskirts of Erlangen. Erlangen is a university town. It was possible to 'order a St Nikolaus' in advance.
University students would dress up like the St Nikolaus of old, in the long bishop's robes with bishop's cap and the large staff. He would come to the front door and ring the doorbell. A parent would great him and slip him a sheet of paper (2 comments)
It's Almost December And The Temperature Is 82 Degrees - 11/29/10 04:13 PM
It is almost December and the temperature today is going up to 82 degrees! Shorts and sandals again today! I sure can't complain about the weather! This is perfect and I wish we could have these temperatures all year long! That would indeed be wonderful!
Palm trees, blue skies and the sparkling waters of the Gulf of Mexico! Tired of freezing up North? Give me a call today so we can discuss your relocation or retirement plans!
Renovations Continue - 11/29/10 04:04 PM
Yes, the renovations continue. Now that the interior is ready for the painter to come (with the exception of the master suite, which won't be painted until the structural engineer is finished) it is time to work on the exterior of the home.
Unfortunately, this beautiful gardenia bush has to come out. We are going to attempt to save it and move it to another location but I don't think it is going to make the transition. It is too large already and is more like a tree than a bush. But it has to be moved because this wall (4 comments)
An Early Morning In Crystal Beach Florida - 11/27/10 11:45 AM
An early morning walk here in Crystal Beach Florida is always special. It is quiet with the exception of the seabirds. Just a typical lazy morning in subtropical Crystal Beach, the place I live and the place I love.
Walking out to the park which is full of beautiful Live Oak trees and then taking a walk along the pier, camera always in hand. What better way to start the day? So much better than participating in ugly events like Black Friday's madness!
These photos tell the tale much better than any words could ever do of why I (11 comments)
Our Annual 'Day After Thanksgiving Dinner' - 11/26/10 12:04 PM
Every year we wait until the day AFTER Thanksgiving to invite friends over for a 'Day After Thanksgiving Dinner' and this year is no exception. Yesterday was family - my daughter and granddaughter first, then Ron's sister's place for dinner. Today our friends are coming over and Ron is doing ALL the cooking, which he loves. That is fine with me too! I clean up and we are both pleased in the end. He is a wonderful cook, so that makes it a perfect day. Naturally, it is a typical Florida day, full of blue skies and sunshine! It would also (2 comments)
Shopping On Thanksgiving??? - 11/25/10 06:52 PM
I don't get it, why would anyone start Christmas shopping on Thanksgiving? I just heard on the news that many stores are OPEN today to kick off the Christmas shopping. That is just plain WRONG! This is supposed to be a day to get together and enjoy your family and friends. This morning I visited my daughter and granddaughter, we had breakfast together and spent several hours enjoying each other's company before I came back home. Ron and I just got back from having dinner at his sister's place. Stores starting the Black Friday tradition on Thanksgiving Thursday is just plain (17 comments)
Another Sun Filled Thanksgiving Day In Florida - 11/25/10 09:16 AM
Yes, you did read that correctly, another sun filled Thanksgiving Day here in Florida! The temperatures are supposed to go up to 84 degrees, the skies are blue and the sun is shining brightly! This is a typical Thanksgiving Day here in the Sunshine State!
Hope everyone has a blessed day with their family and friends today! Happy Thanksgiving to all!
German Potato Salad For Thanksgiving - 11/24/10 06:52 PM
This evening I made a large amount of German potato salad for Thanksgiving. One container for Ron's sister (where we are going tomorrow), one container to take to my daughter tomorrow morning so she has some and another container for our own after Thanksgiving party on Friday. What goes into it? Well, naturally plenty of finely sliced boiled potatoes along with plenty of dill, black pepper, salt, parsley, small pieces of chopped bacon, mustard, olive oil, balsamic white vinegar and water. The water is necessary so that the oil and vinegar gets thinned down a little. Naturally, it is to taste. Ronnie (7 comments)
Wishing Everyone A Wonderful, Blessed Thanksgiving - 11/24/10 10:52 AM
This comes to wish all of my ActiveRain family and anyone else that reads this a wonderful, blessed Thanksgiving! We have so much to be thankful for. While the economy may not be where we wish it was, we are lucky to live in a country where we can freely express our opinions without fear of being imprisoned. We can travel as we wish without fear of searches and seizures, without armed soldiers patrolling our streets and knocking on our doors. We can practice the religious beliefs that we choose or practice none at all without fear of reprisal. All of (8 comments)
An Evening Drive Along Dunedin Causeway - Dunedin Florida - 11/23/10 08:10 PM
This evening I took time to take a drive along Dunedin Causeway in Dunedin Florida and had to stop to take a couple of photos. The temperature had dropped to the low 70's and there were plenty of boats out on the water. That is the beauty of living here, you can take advantage of living right on the Gulf of Mexico the entire year!
The sun was shining and I was surprised to see so many people bathing since it was getting pretty cool already for that (remember, temperatures in the low 70's is cool for those of us (8 comments)
Cool Old Car, But What Is It? - 11/23/10 07:59 PM
On my travels through Indian Rocks and Largo today I passed this car and had to stop and take a photo. I have NO IDEA what type of car it is or the year but it looked so cool that I took the photo hoping that someone here in The Rain would be able to identify it.
If you know what it is, please let me know. It looks like somebody is keeping it in excellent condition, complete with what looks like a new paint job!
Driving Along Hamlin Blvd In Largo - What Lovely Homes - 11/22/10 05:52 PM
Driving along Hamlin Blvd in Largo I had to take a detour on a couple of streets so that I could photograph some of the lovely homes that I was seeing! As a realtor, my eyes always go over the neighborhoods that I pass and as you head south on Hamlin from Wallsingham there are indeed some lovely properties!
This was the home that caused me to turn into this neighborhood. It caught my eye immediately! I was not disappointed, as I got closer! Imagine growing up in this home as a child and perhaps even finding a hidden winding (6 comments)
The Little Princess Turned Four - 11/22/10 05:33 PM
My granddaughter, Aubrey, turned four on Sunday! She had a great birthday party in the park on Saturday and her immediate family celebrated her actual birthday on Sunday. While her mother had baked two beautiful cakes for Saturday's birthday, she also baked a surprise cake for Sunday. The neatest part was that my daughter's Dad, his wife and their two grown sons skyped with Corinna and the birthday girl on Sunday. While Oma Heller in Germany brought a marble bunt cake to the table in front of the computer and Opa lite the candles, everyone sang Happy Birthday. Then Opa said (0 comments)
Imperial Point In Largo Florida - A Wonderful Place To Live - 11/20/10 05:52 PM
Imperial Point in Largo Florida is indeed a wonderful place to live! The small community is minutes from the Gulf Beaches and has the community pool, clubhouse, fishing docks and boat launch right on the intercoastal waterway.
With no through traffic, this is a wonderful place to live. If you are considering relocating and looking for a lovely community, give me a call! I would love to show you around Imperial Point.
Imperial Point is without a doubt one of the nicest communities on the intercoastal, offering 2, 3 and 4 bedroom homes and condos.
Another Beautiful Day In Paradise - 11/19/10 08:42 AM
As I start this Friday morning with a full day out checking on properties with and for clients I am so glad to hear it is going up to 77 degrees again today! Shorts and tennis shoes today, lots of walking and the perfect weather for it!
That is just one of the many reasons I love living here in the Sunshine State! Tired of the cold rainy winter months? Give me a call and start your own search for that dream place in the Florida sun!!!
Renovation Update - 11/18/10 05:34 PM
Our renovation project is progressing nicely. Panel doors have been installed and the place is almost ready for the painters. It is really amazing what a few minor changes and a good cleaning can do! The team that I have hired to work this project are really doing an fantastic job!
The interior should be completely ready for the new coat of paint (after all the wallpaper is removed and an orange-peel finish is added to the walls) right after the Thanksgiving Holiday!
Stay turned to continued updates on this project!
Island Estates, Clearwater Beach Florida Condos - 11/18/10 05:06 PM
Island Estates is a beautiful place on Clearwater Beach Florida to live. Yesterday I was out there showing a condo that is bank owned. The price was just reduced to 330k. With beautiful views of the Gulf of Mexico and the intercoastal from the balcony, this 3 bedroom 3.5 bath condo with a 2 car garage is indeed worth considering!
The building was built in 2007 and the condo itself is over 2000 sq ft! There are wood cabinets and granite countertops. This is such a fantastic location!
If you would like more information on condo living in Clearwater (2 comments)
Another Beautiful Day On Clearwater Beach Florida - 11/17/10 06:01 PM
Today was another beautiful day on Clearwater Beach Florida. I was showing condos on Clearwater Beach's Island Estates and could not resist taking a photo or two since it is such beautiful weather. We are indeed lucky to be living in such a wonderful place!
These condos are beautiful and will be in another post. Remember, if you are thinking of relocating or looking for a winter condo here in Clearwater Beach Florida, give me a call!
I live in the area and grew up locally, so I can really assist you with your search here in Clearwater Beach (4 comments)
Mama Squirrel Busy Building A Nest Over Our Balcony - 11/17/10 09:12 AM
This morning Ron was on the balcony after breakfast and he called me out to see the new nest that Mama Squirrel was building right above our balcony in the Live Oak Trees. She was busy gathering Spanish Moss and twigs and going in and out of the nest, as she added materials. From time to time you could see a little tail stick out. Naturally, I had to run and get my new Nikon camera and make my FIRST video with the new camera! Here is how we spend our spare time at home: watching nature's creatures.
Imperial Point - Largo's Secret On The Intercoastal - 11/16/10 07:40 PM
Imperial Point is a lovely community! Two, three and four bedroom homes are here, many with private pools. All of the homes in Imperial Point have one thing in common: they are all part of one of Largo's best kept secrets on the Intercoastal Waterway!
The community clubhouse and pool are directly on the intercoastal. There is also a dock and pier to go fishing and a ramp to launch your private boat. Just minutes from the Gulf Beaches, Imperial Point is a wonderful location to live.
If you would like more information about homes currently available in Imperial (4 comments)
Florida's Tropical Paradise - 11/16/10 07:23 PM
Florida is such a beautiful place to live! There are so many wonderful plants here and even though we are now in the Fall season, we still have the most amazing colors brightening up the landscape.
While our Northern neighbors are experiencing bare trees and cold nights, we are still running around in shorts and barefeet. There are still fresh flowers for the dinner table and the sound of the surf is still calling us to the beaches.
Tired of cold winters and gray skies? Come to Florida where the skies are always blue and the Gulf Beaches (6 comments)
Treasure Island Florida - Powder White Sand, Blue Skies - 11/15/10 05:33 PM
Treasure Island Florida is a vacationers paradise and it sure doesn't get any better than here! Powder white sand and blue skies together with the sparkling surf of the Gulf of Mexico! Who wouldn't love to live or vacation here?
I was at the Bilmar Resort on Treasure Island today checking out a listing for a client and took these photos. My client will be down next week to see this lovely condo.
From the back of the Bilmar you can see the surf in the distance, past the pristine beach. Thinking of purchasing an investment or vacation condo? (4 comments)
Barbara-Jo's New And Improved SCHNITZBROT - 11/15/10 09:14 AM
Well, since everything that gets posted to the internet remains there forever, I figured this is also the easiest way to pass on my new and improved SCHNITZBROT recipe so my kids will have it when I am no longer around to share it with them.
As you can see from the photo where a slice is cut and photographed on it's side, it is full of dried fruit. My 'ex', who lives in Germany, informed me that the correct Swabian spelling is Schnitzbrot, not Schnittsbrot, which is how it sounds. But that is getting off the topic of how (5 comments)
November In Florida - 82 Degrees And Barefeet ! - 11/13/10 04:58 PM
November in Florida is always a beautiful month! This year is no exception! Today the temperature went up to 82 degrees and I have been running around all day in shorts and barefeet! This is my favorite time of year! It is cool enough that you no longer need to run the air conditioning! All the windows are open and the ceiling fans are on. I imagine this is what the weather in heaven is like!
Schnitzbrot (German Fruitbread) - It Is That Time Of Year Again! - 11/12/10 05:57 PM
Today I baked Schnitzbrot. That is German Fruitbread and it is nothing like American Fruitcake. It does not have ANY candied fruits in it! It has dried fruit that are cut small and soaked in rum over night (after the rum is brought to a slow boil). This year I used figs, mangos, papaya, pineapple, cranberries and apricots.
To the above mixture come walnut pieces and sliced almonds. Add spices and bread flour along with yeast and eggs. I made six loaves of this special bread and three of them will get mailed to Washington, DC to my son in (8 comments)
Grapefruit Season Has Arrived - Pink Grapefruits That Is! - 11/11/10 03:56 PM
Pink grapefruits are so tasty and grapefruit season has arrived here in sunny Florida! Last weekend Ron and I were over at his mother's house, picking pink grapefruits! Today I made about two gallons of fresh grapefruit juice for Ron. I still have plenty left to eat too!
We will be back at his mother's place this weekend, picking grapefruit again. There are hundreds of them on the trees there! While the northern states prepare for the winter months we are picking fresh citrus fruit down here in Clearwater Florida!!! Oh, and I was in sandals and shorts all day (9 comments)
Renovation Update - Things Are Moving Right Along! - 11/11/10 03:47 PM
Here is a renovation update on the house that was once known as the Little House of Horror. Things are progressing along nicely. New doors are being installed and various minor changes are being made as the home gets ready for the interior painting to begin in December.
The above 'hole in the wall' where the tv cabinet was is being transformed to something that will be usable and not look as dated as the former cabinet did. At the same time, access to this piece of plumbing will still be possible, should it ever be needed.
With a (0 comments)
HAFA/HAMP Class At Pinellas Realtor Organization - 11/10/10 04:56 PM
Today I attended a HAFA/HAMP class at the Pinellas Realtor Organization. My brokerage, Charles Rutenberg Realty, was responsible for our continuing education class. This is something I have come to expect from what I consider to be the best brokerage in the nation!
Susan Dutcher was the first speaker and she explained the new HAMP and HAFA programs that are now in existence to expedite the short sale process on conventional loans. There is always so much going on in the real estate industry and Charles Rutenberg makes sure that this information gets to their agents.
After Susan answered the (1 comments)
Lauriol Plaza Restaurant On 18th St NW - Washington DC - 11/10/10 04:08 PM
If Latin American food is what you are looking for, you need to check out Lauriol Plaza Restaurant on 18th Street NW in Washington, DC. This is where we went for dinner after our trip to Mount Vernon. We were all tired and this is one of my son's favorite restaurants.
Since this was Halloween weekend, they had decorated appropriately! We ate upstairs where we could enjoy the sights. Many of the dishes offered are Mexican and from what I have heard, all of them are delicious! So here is another great place to eat while visiting our nation's capital!!
Colorful Autumn Leaves In Virginia - 11/09/10 03:57 PM
As we were leaving the estate of George and Martha Washington in Virginia I had to stop and photograph the beautiful foliage. Living in Florida, we do not get to experience the beauty of the changing color of the leaves during Autumn.
My son, Sascha, was all too glad to pose for this photo for me! These colors are one of the things that Southerners travel North to see at this time of year! What a beautiful display of Mother Nature doing her thing!
Visiting Mount Vernon - Home Of George & Martha Washington - 11/09/10 03:49 PM
On my last full day in Washington DC my son and his friends took me to Mount Vernon, home of our first President, George Washington. The last time I visited Mount Vernon I was around 8 years old and in my child's memory, the main house was enormous. What a surprise to see it again as an adult and discover that it really isn't that large after all!
We had a wonderful time on that Sunday afternoon, walking through the main house and gardens. We also visited the final resting place of George and Martha, a site I remembered from (1 comments)
Carmine's Italian Restaurant - Penn Quarter - Washington DC - 11/08/10 04:33 PM
Sunday was a beautiful day, full of sunshine. Two of Sascha's closest friends drove in from Baltimore to spend the day with us. Chad and Regina lived in Pinehurst Dorm at Rollins College in Winter Park with my son and this trio has been close ever since! We met at Carmine's Italian Restaurant on 7th Street NW in the Penn Quarter. It was lunch time and we ordered a platter of the chicken parmigiana with pasta and broccoli. This platter could have easily fed 5 or 6 people! It was a massive amount of food and it was delicious!
Regina (5 comments)
Eatonville Restaurant, Washington DC - 11/08/10 03:48 PM
I know it looks like all we did was eat out while I was in DC but we REALLY did do other things too! Saturday night we went to Eatonville Restaurant on 14th St NW. The food was out of this world!
Eatonville gets it's name from the town of Eatonville, Florida. After the Civil War was over and Reconstruction was going on African Americans were segregated in sections of white towns. In 1882 Joseph C. Clarke purchased land from the mayor of Maitland, Florida and started selling lots to African American families. In 1887 Eatonville was officially incorporated. This made history as it (2 comments)
My New iPhone Now Has Custom Ringtones - 11/05/10 04:04 PM
My new iPhone had only one thing wrong: I love my custom ringtones and was told that it is a problem gettng custom ringtones on the iPhone. Well when I was in DC the wonderful guy at the AT&T store told me about a website called www.gx-5.com that allows you to make custom ringtones. Today I went to the website and for a little over $13 I have a lifelong membership and the ability to make ringtones from any section of any song I want. Naturally, I have to purchase the songs and get them into iTunes if I don't own the (7 comments)
Progress On Our Little House Of Horrors - 11/04/10 05:10 PM
I promised to update everyone on our Little House of Horrors which is slowly taking shape. Tom has been getting the place ready for the painters to come in next month. All of the electric plates have been removed, as have been the ceiling lights and fans.
All air conditioning vents have also been removed and the verticals are down. It is amazing how many little things have to be taken care of BEFORE the painters can get in and start removing all of that wallpaper (which is in EVERY room). Tom has also been repairing so many things, like (8 comments)
Politics, Washington DC and the Rally - 11/04/10 04:56 PM
As we were leaving the Rally to Restore Sanity last Saturday I noticed massive numbers of signs. Everyone has an opinion and wants to share their thoughts. That is what this country is all about, the right to express yourself without fear of being imprisoned. There were a couple of signs that I especially appreciated, so I decided to take photos of them and share here:
I nust admit, I did enjoy the sign above and the one below made me think of the 60's - that attitude for change to take place seems to be coming to life again! (4 comments)
Halloween In Washington DC - 11/03/10 01:53 PM
As my son, Sascha, and I were returning home from the rally and walking up 16th Street NW we passed this building that was really well decorated for Halloween! Naturally, being a true blogger, my camera was with me.
I actually had to get two shots to get all of the decorations into the photos, but thought they had done such a great job that I needed to share!
As we walked on I found the best one of all and had to do a second look to make sure I was not passing a church's cemetery!
These (13 comments)
Teak Wood Restaurant - Logen Circle - Washington DC - 11/03/10 01:44 PM
After the Rally to Restore Sanity we were all starving, so we walked from the National Mall up to Teak Wood Restaurant on 14th Street (in Logan Circle) for what proved to be an excellent lunch! The place was packed and we were told there was a two hour wait but Joey, a close friend of my son's who eats there all the time and knows everyone, found us seats at the suchi bar!
After hours of standing during the rally, it was great to be able to sit down and enjoy a good meal! The suchi was excellent as was (8 comments)
Rally To Restore Sanity In Washington DC - 11/02/10 07:56 PM
The Rally to Restore Sanity was not as political as I had personally hoped, but it was a lot of fun and had a fantastic turnout. The numbers I was hearing was between 125,000 and 150,000 people showed up on the National Mall for the event that Colbert/Stewart planned. I find that an amazing turnout!!!
Naturally, I was there with my son, Sascha and his friends. HRC had a reserved section for us but we were a little late getting there and it was impossible to get to that section through the massive amount of people that were there.
Meeting Active Rain Members Is Really Great!!! - 11/02/10 07:45 PM
Meeting ActiveRain members is indeed a great experience! On Saturday morning I got up early and Pat Kennedy came by and picked me up in front of my son's apartment building on 16th St NW. We both planned on going to the Colbert/Stewart Rally to Restore Sanity later that day, so it was a quick breakfast.
The time flew by and soon it was time for me to meet my son and his friends at the HRC Headquarters so we could all go to the rally together.
Sascha (my son) and his friends Joey and Adam were already waiting (6 comments)
Our Nation's Capital - 11/01/10 08:49 PM
If there is one thing that makes me proud it is a view like this one! The statue of a female Native American called 'Freedom" that was made during the presidency of Abraham Lincoln. Even though there was a Civil War going on, Lincoln felt it was necessary to complete this project.
I am so glad he did! I get goose bumps when I stand in the streets in DC and look up at this statue!!! This is one of the many things I love about our Nation's Capital!
Washington DC Is My Favorite Town - 11/01/10 08:37 PM
I really do love Washington DC! It is a beautiful town where there is always something going on AND you never know who you are going to run into while there!
We had just come from having brunch when Whoppi Goldbery showed up in front of us on the street! Naturally, a photo was in order!
I walked more in one day in DC then I do in an entire month down in Florida! And the fact that DC has bicycle paths in the middle of traffic is something I wish we had down here!!! Stay tuned for more (4 comments)
Having grown up in south Tampa and lived here in Pinellas County for the last 20+ years, I know the area well!
Give me a call today at 727-512-0910 or send an e-mail to email@example.com. Be sure to visit my web site: www.barbarajo.com
Ich spreche Deutsch!
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