Friday, June 24, 2011

Summer is here!

Whats your favorite color of hydrangea?

Blue blue hydrangeas are my favorite. Sometimes in the photos they almost look purple until one positions them next to a purple one. Then the true color is quite obvious.

There are also hydrangea bushes that have blooms of every hue all in one bush or a faded hue look to the entire set of blossoms. I've heard it said that the acidity of the soil plays a role in the type of color hues the hydrangeas take on:

And the varieties in the blooms are interesting as well. Take a look at these two fuschia hydrangea, they are relatively the same color yet the type of bloom is very different:

A great way to display the cut hydrangeas is in a favorite milk glass container:

Hope you're having a nice summer and enjoying the colors of the season.

If you'd like to make the most of your real estate experience call me today...I am here for you and will treat your transaction as if it were my own...

Carla Brooks

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

In the name of Love!

A wonderful day at Tysons Central Long & Foster...Our team (residential and commercial) came together on our annual Community Service Day and transformed the yard for a very special group of young ladies!

Gege is the director at this home for young ladies aspiring to graduate from high school and do good things in the world thereafter. She has to prioritize her time so yard work somehow doesn't fit into the picture most days. We came to the rescue with energy and enthusiasm!

We are so Proud of the young ladies and their hard work in school and we had a great time making "their outdoor spaces" shine.

If you can picture the yard "before", as in not having been weeded and mulched and trimmed in at least two years time:

We started out with an endless array of tools and machinery and gloves, compliments of all the wonderful folks at Tyson Central:

Trucks filled with plantings (Merrifield Garden Center) and mulch thanks to Kathleen and Dylan:

Bring it on! we started out slowly.... pulling weeds with our hands and digging out rooted dandelions with shovels:

to removing many larger specimens with clipper and chainsaws....

There's Chuck behind the bushes with that wild chainsaw--all our lives were in danger at one point!

Hopefully, these bushes will grow back:)

Osman was brave enough to assist in the backyard tree removal detail:

Didn't take long for that dumpster to fill up! Thanks to MBH (Don Tomlinson) for providing it!!

The backyard slowly went from wild jungle to neat mulched beds....

Guy and Donna put their special touches in the corner, relocating divided hosta, and as I caught them in the act:

they decided to get cute and pose for the camera!

There was time around 1 pm for a beer and pizza break:

thanks to RGS for the music & coolers of water and soda and Sam (with Propsperity Mortgage) for the (shhh..Yuengling beer) & pizza :

Keisha, a resident, helped out with the water hose so the plants wouldn't wilt in the heat:

Gary, Dylan and ....directed the mulching operations:

Mike did a great job cleaning up debris and fine dust from the walkway and driveway:

Awesome...deweeded and mulched and planted with flowers....and thanks to Marlene, Tom and a few others the overgrown hosta were divided and shifted to other areas of the yard as needed:

While most activity was focused on the outside, Betsy and her daughter, Allie concentrated on reorganizing the living space in the lower level of the home:

A great time was had by all and we are still busy collecting items for the home. A local lawn company, Merlos Lawn Care (703-281-8084), has volunteered to care for the lawn until October!

A special thanks to Brian Hipwell for donating the DVD player and Able Moving and Storage for the wood for the picnic table.

Thanks to all of you for your time and talents that made this day a successful Community Service Day!

If you'd like to make the most of your real estate experience call the Tyson Central Office @ 703-556-8600. We are here to earn your trust and we care about our community!

Carla Brooks

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Thinking "Green"/Acting "Green"

Tired of paying too much in energy costs to heat and cool your home? Want to conserve energy resources? Whether you live in a castle:

or a small cottage in the woods you may want to consider purchasing a programmable thermostat.

If so, consider purchasing a programmable thermostat to regulate temperatures inside when your a/c unit comes on in the spring/summer months and likewise your heater in the fall/winter months. There's no sense in paying for day time comfort when you are sleeping, just program for when you wake up in the morning:

or for when you return from work or the kids are home during the day:

Costs range from $99 to $469 for the thermostats depending on how sophisticated one desires to be. The lower end units require manual setting for a 7 day stretch while the upper end models can be accessed remotely (in case you left home and forgot to progam) and have colorful, interactive screens.

The most basic programmable thermostats can be installed by the homeowner in less than an hour, the more advanced models may require assistance from a technician.

The benefits to installing programmable thermostats are clear: Save the earths' precious resources while at the same time reducing your energy costs.

If you are thinking of buying or selling a home and want to make the most of the experience call me today. Your transaction will be treated as if it were my own!

Carla Brooks
Long & Foster

PS all photos are a courtesy of OLive Beaupre' Millers series "My Bookhouse".