Sunday, March 29, 2009


Another thing to look forward to, although none of us are there quite yet!

Something to look forward to

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


The week of April 6th I am going with Bob to Swiftwater Pennsylvania in the Poconos, and NO, we will not have a heart shaped bathtub or mirrors on the ceiling, lol. Bob's company has their Americam headquarters in Swiftwater and he needs to go for a couple of days. Since it is not convenient to fly there, he will rent a car and drive. Therefore he needs me to keep him company on the drive. Big question.... does anyone know here I can find some antique shops/antique malls/ thrift shops in the area? I have not found much on line. Better yet, any bloggers to meet for lunch? I can have the car during the day.

We will resume our "where's Janet" feature later.


Monday, March 23, 2009


Are you having fun with this guessing game? We will be here in 49 to take a guess? I told the owner of this picture I would give him credit and link back to his blog, BUT I can't do it now or I would spoil the surprise, right? When I am done teasing you I will give him the credit he is due. So where do you think this is and what is with that funky boat?


Friday, March 20, 2009


Let's play a little game of "Where's Janet Going?", shall we? In 49 short days or 7 long weeks, depending upon your viewpoint, Bob and I leave for here. Give it your best shot in the comments section, OK? Let's have some interactive fun. I will give you another clue in a couple of days.


Thursday, March 19, 2009


Some of you have asked me what I think is going to happen with the Real Estate market, where it will improve first etc. See me above, with my prognosticating instrument...all Realtors wish that we could get our hands on one of these. My observation is that the market seems to be picking up a little. Homes that are well priced for today's market are selling. Sellers have to be realistic and realize that prices are down a good bit in most of the country. "Today's market" is not the price they could have gotten four years ago. Each market is different and has fared differently in the last four years, so ask a Realtor in your local market how much prices have dropped and what is going on in your area. That being said, I hope the market comes back soon in every nook and cranny of the country :-)

What is the most beautiful home I have ever seen and do I have pictures? The answer is totally subjective and varies from day to day. I love all houses and have been obsessed with them and their architecture, decor and quirks for years. I can tell you that my favorites are usually houses built between 1910-1940, particularly homes from the 20s and 30s. They have a lot of character and in most cases are not ostentatious. My dream house might be a Craftsmen style bungalow, a Colonial Revival style two story, a Tudor Revival or a New England Colonial from the very early 1800s and the list goes on and on. I really seem to like the "Revival" styles because they are often a romantic take on the original style. Aside from the architecture, the decorating also makes a statement and I hate to see a house with potential have that potential go unrealized because of the decor or lack thereof. Of course I redecorate houses in my head when I can't get (or stay ) asleep. What is with *that* anyway??

The same with "what is the worst house you have ever seen?" question. Most all houses some some inherent quality that makes them livable and lovable. Who I am to say what house is the worst? Someone may love it, but I really think the worst houses are those that don't have someone to love them. Sometimes there is just a feeling of unhappiness about a house manifested by a lack of maintenance and old fashioned cleaning. Dirty laundry hanging around, scuffs on the walls and crusty dishes in the sink do not inspire buyers or Realtors and believe me I am not the greatest housekeeper myself, but if my home were on the market it would be as clean as possible.

The last question to be addressed is why I got into Real Estate. The short and sweet answer is because of my obsession with houses. But you know I am never brief ! I studied for the Real Estate exam back in 1977 when I was out of work and didn't have any kids and thought I was in a stable marriage....( enter music from "Jaws"). Before I finished ( there were no classes required back then, just a textbook) and was ready to take the test I got a job at a local bank and decided that was my best career choice at the time. I had my first child in 1980 and the deal was I would stay at home until he went to school, then go into Real Estate. If I made money fine, if not I would be having a career that I had always wanted and my husband would support the family. What a guy! Fair enough. Meanwhile in 1984 I had my second son. Life is good...2 cars in the yard ( OK, so they were both Chevettes), two boys playing in the yard. Three years later I am unceremoniously dumped and told "you're a smart girl, you'll find a job to support yourself, I have found someone much more interesting with only a grown child". Gee thanks! So, of course Real Estate was out of the question at that point and I went slinking back to banking after being out of the job market for almost 8 years. A couple of years go by and I meet Bob at a Parents Without partners dance. We were married 2 years later while I was working for the FDIC ( my bank failed in 1990). I stayed there and enjoyed it for most of my tenure. Then times got tough, downsizing began and although I had a job, my superiors were making my life miserable. So, with Bob's encouragement I got my RE license in the fall of 1994. I love what I do, but I have never made a lot of money at it. Fortunately I have made enough to get the boys ( there were now 4) through whatever schooling they chose and now the money is not as important in our day to day lives. Good thing, what with this market the last couple of years. Bob takes good care of me financially and emotionally and we are really enjoying being Empty Nesters and doing our own thing.

Hope this answers your questions...feel free to ask more if you know I adore and appreciate all of you who take the time to read about my life.

Janet has the answers to more of your questions

Saturday, March 14, 2009


Just to let you know I am working on a post answering your questions and I am getting ready for a Real Estate closing...hope I don't forget has been a very long time! And I am planning our vacation which will start in 56 days...yippee!



Wow, you ask some tough questions; ones that require me to think. I will start with the vacations. Bob and I only started taking vacations a few years ago. When the boys were young there was the whole timing/visitation issues plus it was just too darned expensive to take four growing boys on any kind of major vacation. My youngest one always lamented that all his friends had been to DisneyWorld and "they aren't rich". Maybe not, but we were more about keeping food on the table and clothes on their backs. That being said, since the boys have left the nest Bob and I have been to Bermuda twice, to Seattle and to Alaska. All were nice trips, but none were super spectacular vacations. Bob used to travel a lot for his last job and although the trips weren't vacations for him, when I went along we usually stayed somewhere a couple of extra days and called it a vacation.
Watefront Youghal, Ireland

Of these trips I would say my favorites were probably our two trips to Ireland with long weekends in London. Ireland is just so verdant and the people are absolutely wonderful. We stayed in a town called Youghall ( I posted on this town once) right on the water ( Irish Sea??) where the walking and gawking was wonderful. Great small hotels, fresh seafood and then on to London.

City street London

Portobello Road (not a market day!)

London is wonderful but very congested and very expensive. Both times we stayed near Hyde Park and quickly figured out that walking is really the fastest and most economical way to get around. The "Tube" is pricey and buses are slowed by the traffic. I went to Portobello Road to the Flea/Antique Markets but it was so crowded that you couldn't get near the merchandise. That was disappointing, but as I have said everything is so expensive I doubt I would have been tempted to buy anything anyway.

Where would I like to go next? Stay tuned and soon I will fill you in on this year's vacation which will take place in 8 weeks. Bob has had a tough year this year and he certainly needs to get away and this should be just the ticket, pun intended.

Where would I live if I could live anywhere? The caveat here is that money must not be involved. Both places I would love to live are extremely pricey, and not just because they are both on the Pacific Ocean. Either one of these places would suit me just fine.....Carmel California or Coronado California. See a pattern here? I have only been to Carmel for an afternoon, but I feel like I could wander and housepeep for days and then there is the ocean of course and the shops. It is like no other place I have ever been, just magical. If I lived there I would live in one of the smaller cottages with a fanciful shingled roof and funky trees in the yard. I would have a view of the sea...ahhhh, so romantic. Remember money is no object in this dream world!!

Both of these homes are for sale ( or were) for about 2million each.. and neither are as fanciful as I would like, but what the heck. Pondering....should I just buy them both???

If I can't, for whatever reason, live in Carmel I will reside by the sea in Coronado. Again, I don't want a big home, a cute bungalow in the village will do. I will walk the beach, do lots more housepeeping and eat in all the fun restaurants. I will probably open a small creperie as the one there is just terrible, and you know how much I love to cook.

Coronado cottage

Does anyone notice a theme here??

Okay, this is much harder than I thought, so I will post this now and get working on your other questions regarding Real Estate, my crystal ball and why I actually got into Real Estate.


Monday, March 9, 2009


After the snow last Monday, we had a glorious weekend with plentiful sunshine and high temps near 60 degrees. The snow has mostly melted. Absolutely heavenly. Today...not so much. The euphemistically termed "winter mix" falling from leaden skies has turned to wet snow falling from even more leaden skies. Arghh...such is weather in New England.


Monday, March 2, 2009


Snow, snow and more snow and I am sick to death of it right about now. This weather is making me gloomy, plus my thin skin has been pierced by an rather unpleasant e-mail from someone I adore so..... in the spirit of Rue, you know Rue with the greatest new/old house and the best pictures courtesy of George her Camera, I am opening up this blog for questions. So, anything you want to know about me, my life, life as a Realtor just ask. Don't be shy and I will answer your questions in a future post. OK?