Activerain friends - a blogging bonus

Real Estate Agent with Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.

Activerain members in 2006-2008 were pioneers in the early days of real estate blogging, and we developed a strong kinship by learning together and actively helping each other figure out the "how-to's" of this new world. Many of us have remained close, even after spreading our wings beyond Activerain.

Jesse CliftonIt's been nearly two years since Jesse Clifton posted his last blog to Activerain, Fairbanks Gardening - Ann's Greenhouse. His blog introduced us to the beauty of Alaska year-round through his wonderful photos and reminded us all that there's more to life in Alaska than ice and cold. Yes, Alaskans buy and sell homes, go to Farmers' Markets in the summer, send their kids to school, and love where they live - kinda like people in other parts of our beautiful country.

A lot has happened since that last blog post - Jesse lost his partner and wife of 33 years to cancer, left real estate and the Alaska he shared with so many of us through his blogging, and set out on the adventures that he and Kathy had planned for their retirement years. Since then, he has stayed in touch with Activerain friends through Facebook, and we've followed his cross-country travels vicariously as he's met with Activerainers at nearly every stop. 


Patricia KennedyJesse traveled through Maryland yesterday, en route between North Carolina and Pennsylvania, and we had a mini-meetup of Activerainers from the early years. Pat Kennedy came from D.C., Audrey June-Forshey came with her assistant from Montgomery County, Maryland, and we all had a great time talking about everything from Jesse's travels to real estate and our early Activerain experiences. We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day to enjoy crab cakes on the deck at Carroll's Creek Cafe in Eastport, overlooking the U.S. Naval Academy and Historic Annapolis.


If you're new to Activerain and you're still not sure what the big deal is, you'll find that the comraderie of Activerain members is an unexpected bonus to any business that develops through blogging. Whenever two blogging buddies meet for the first time, there are lots of hugs, smiles, and group photos. Strangers witnessing this would think we're long lost relatives, and seriously... I feel a greater kinship with some of my Activerain friends than anyone I knew in high school or college and most of my extended family.  

Jesse, thanks for stopping in Maryland yesterday. It was great to finally meet in person, and I just wish there had been time to hear more about your travel adventures. We'll see you on Facebook.


P.S. We'd love it if you would drop in to Activerain once in a while and perhaps share some photos and tales from your travels.


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This infoMargaret Wodarmation was provided to you by Margaret Woda, an Associate Broker with Long & Foster Real Estate in Crofton Maryland. Contact Margaret today for general real estate information or to learn how she can help you buy or sell a home in Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton, Davidsonville, Gambrills, and Odenton. 

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Brigita McKelvie, Associate Broker
Cindy Stys Equestrian and Country Properties, Ltd. - Lehigh Valley, PA
The Broker with horse sense and no horsing around


I have been blogging since April 2007 and I have met up with a couple of AR's also.  When we met face to face, it is as if we personally know each other and just hold a conversation as though we have been friends forever.  It is so nice to meet up with the different members.  Hope to meet up with more in the future.


May 20, 2014 04:22 AM #19
Russell Lewis
Realty Austin, Austin Texas Real Estate - Austin, TX

Jesse Clifton Austin Meet up

Had the great pleasure of meeting Jesse in person along with several other notable Texas Rainers!

May 20, 2014 04:40 AM #20
Yolanda Cordova-Gilbert
Sitterle Homes - Richmond, TX
Sitterle Homes


 I love this blog I did not know Jesse but I love to hear about travel, it is my passion. I have to totally agree with you there is something special about the friendships here in the rain!

May 20, 2014 05:45 AM #21
Ann Zieve
Keller Williams Success Realty - Eden, UT
Unmatched Ownership Experience

Thank you Margareth for sharing your wonderful experience. Meeting and talking with other people is still the best way of communication.

May 20, 2014 06:40 AM #22
Kerrie La Guardia
ActiveRain, Community Manager - Kirkland, WA
Let it Rain!

This is such a great reminder to the new and old Rainers.  The old pics make me smile and remember how much we've gone through.  And we're still here baby!!

May 20, 2014 06:46 AM #23
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Margaret, this sounds like such a great opportunity to renew and enhance friendships, so nice of you to enhance his visit by invinting all the area rainers for a meetup.

May 20, 2014 07:22 AM #24
Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

Thanks for sharing this real-life example of what makes AR so great ... the members and their relationships.  Admittedly, I am somewhat jealous of those areas of the country that have active and consistent get-togethers.  I keep hoping that the Chicago area soon joins that list ...


May 20, 2014 08:36 AM #25
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Jesse and his blogs were some of the reasons I went to Alaska last August, and of course, he was off somewhere in Phoenix or something. But I would have loved to have met up with Jesse in person. I hope he comes to northern Cal someday.

May 20, 2014 08:39 AM #26
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

Many of my favorite bloggers from back then have left, it makes you wonder.

May 20, 2014 09:39 AM #27
Realty Executives NOLA
Realty Executives NOLA - Kim Higgins, Broker/Owner - Greater New Orleans & Northshore Area Rea... - New Orleans, LA
Greater New Orleans & Northshore Area Real Estate

Thanks for sharing. It helps to understand how far this network reaches.

May 20, 2014 12:31 PM #29
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

"the comraderie of Activerain members is an unexpected bonus to any business that develops through blogging. Whenever two blogging buddies meet for the first time, there are lots of hugs, smiles, and group photos. Strangers witnessing this would think we're long lost relatives, and seriously... I feel a greater kinship with some of my Activerain friends than anyone I knew in high school or college and most of my extended family."    How true this is.

May 20, 2014 01:03 PM #30
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad


What a neat post this is! Such a wonderful tribute to someone who has been a part of the AR family, but also a reminder to us all about the wonderful comraderie that exists in our community - speaking of which I am so sorry you were not able to be at the AR meetup in DC a week ago.

AR is a very special community and taking time to meet up with others when traveling is a wonderful way to experience the friendships we have.


May 20, 2014 01:17 PM #31
Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS 602-380-4886
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana!

Margaret THIS is what Activerain is all about.........people, creating relationships/friendships and enjoying the journey together.  Jesse is a great example of what we're all about............awesome!

May 20, 2014 02:49 PM #32
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Margaret, whenever I travel, I reach out local Rainers and plan to see them. This is what ActiveRain is all about!

May 20, 2014 04:15 PM #33
Margaret Woda
Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc. - Crofton, MD
Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation

Russell and Richard, thank you for posting your photos.  I'll bet you Jesse could put together quite an album of Activerainers and the uniquely beautiful places he's visited them.

Thank you all for your comments. I read each of them and smiled... Who among us would have expected such life-changing friendships when we signed up for Activerain?

May 20, 2014 09:28 PM #34
June Piper-Brandon
Remax New Beginnings - Baltimore, MD
Piecing Dreams One Home at a Time

Activerain like real estate is all about building relationships and enriching lives.  Thanks for sharing.

May 21, 2014 06:22 AM #35
Bryan Robertson
Intero Real Estate - Los Altos, CA
Broker, Author, Speaker

I've met a lot of great people from all around the country via Activerain.  There have been a lot of strong relationships forged for which I'm forever grateful.

May 27, 2014 09:19 PM #36
William Johnson
RE/MAX Associates - La Jolla, CA
San Diego Real Estate Voice, GRI CRS e-Pro CDPE

Hi Margaret, I think if the new Rainers are going to catch on to what was and remains a life changer for many of us, we will have to lead the way. It seemed totally natural back then and I see no reason why this very special aspect of ActiveRain shouldn't continue. My fist instinct was to want this post featured, not realizing it already was. Superb post Margaret !

I count ActiveRain as one of personal treasures in life. I don't know if I could live as happily without it but one thing certain, I am glad I don't have to find out. 

Jun 20, 2014 05:58 AM #37
John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

WOW Margaret, that goes to show just how impressive the AR community is.  I haven't been around in the rain that long, but have already formed some tremendous relationships

Jul 20, 2014 02:19 PM #38
Richard and Beth Witt
Long Island Cash Home Buyer - Massapequa, NY
Long Island Cash Home Buyer 516-330-6940

I enjoyed this post Margaret... thanks for sharing with us... I first entered the Rain on 12/12... I did it because Rich had hear it would help drive traffic to our site... and it does and it does so much more and your post so beautifully illustrates...

Happy Day

Aug 17, 2014 01:15 AM #39
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Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation
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