Friday, October 31, 2008

Are you my friend or family?

If so, feel free to go shop at Sephora and save 20%.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Portland Real Estate Down 7.6%

I love (and by love, I mean don't love) the way the media tries to make the Real Estate market look as bad as it possibly can.

He writes, "In fact, Portland and Seattle now rank at or near the bottom of the top tier cities that fall outside the worst of the worst markets primarily found in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada."

Oh, so if you throw out all the really bad markets, including four entire states, and then exclude all of the small towns, or towns that aren't "top-tier," which I take to read as large cities, then we are at the bottom of what is left?

And even then, "The cities ahead of Portland are: Dallas (-2.7 percent), Charlotte (-2.8 percent), Boston (-4.7 percent), Denver (-5.1 percent), Cleveland (-6.6 percent) and New York (-6.9 percent). But of those cities, which ones would you want to live in? No offense, Charlotte, Cleveland and Dallas.

So really, it's not as bad as this article makes it sound.

-7.6% is looking like a great investment compared to my stock portfolio!

Don't give up on Portland Real Estate! Thanks to our Urban Growth Boundary, there are only so many houses to go around, and Portland is a hugely desirable place to live. I'm currently working with buyers from Texas, Seattle, Hong Kong and Israel. I'm doing my best to help the numbers!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Our Anniversary Weekend

Norris, Whit and I flew to Phoenix and Claire was waiting for us at the airport. She had gotten us a room at the Valley Ho (complimentary, thanks to her wonderful job)and we just loved it! It's a fabulous, renovated 50's hotel, and it was always swinging! The pool scene was fabulous, and we spent a LOT of time in the groovy bar. (It made me want to sell our house and buy a mid-century house, as it's a style that we both adore)

Sushi for lunch at RA. Whit loves this place, so it was our first stop!

Cam & Betsy have arrived - they're staying near campus with the Oregon Band, but we got them for the night! Dinner at TeePee - amazingly good, authentic Mexican food.

Where is Norris' moustache? He shaved it to surprise the kids! Who was the most surprised by this? Probably me! This day was our 27th anniversary and I had never seen his upper lip in 28 years! None of us are used to it. The verdict is out on his growing it back~

Betsy and TJ

The U of O/ASU football game on Saturday night, after dinner with the Adams at In 'n Out. It was super fun! And the Ducks looked great. We won!

We were only 6 rows from the top of the stadium. But the Ducks crowd was amazing and we basically outcheered the ASU fans! Such a good time!

After breakfast on Sunday, we stopped in a funky gift shop, where TJ discovered how he'd look with a ponytail.

Norris and Whit had to leave on Sunday night, but I've got one more night to go before I fly to Palm Springs for the Windermere Symposium. So Claire provided yet another aMAZing hotel room for me - this one at the Royal Palms - where we were greeted with a bottle of Moet and Godiva chocolates... We spent the afternoon at the pool.

Dinner poolside.

The men have left for the airport, Cam and Betsy are probably already home (they flew with the Oregon Band) and I'm alone in my ($450!!) free room with wine and cheese, my little laptop, and a big comfy bed!

This was one of the best weekends I can remember. We had such fun with kids, TJ & Betsy, and we really relaxed, had great meals, absolutely perfect weather, and a bit of good shopping!

Happy Anniversary to us!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A beautiful fall day

Just taking the dogs out for a little stroll - Bean in his camo gear, and Boomer in his full length fur.

It's really fall - dark before dinner - and dark when I get up in the morning.

Time to order a cord of wood!


Life has been a little bit dull lately.

Work is odd - there's a lot to do, and I'm out and about doing it for many hours per week, yet there's little in the way of results, at the moment.

I'm reading The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian (author of Midwives) and it's just so-so.

Food is also a big bore, since we're avoiding all sugar and white flour for 6 weeks. Boring!

Partying? Nope. Not for a while.

The Ducks? Had a bye.

The weather? Rain.

The puppy? Doesn't want to go outside in the rain. It's going to be a long winter.

(reminds me of a terrible old joke: Did you hear about the guy who had a dog with no legs? Its name was cigarette. Every morning the guy took him out for a drag.) That'll be my winter.

The light at the end of the tunnel of boredom is our trip to Phoenix this weekend. And my subsequent trip to Palm Springs, which should invigorate my professional life, and give me a chance to relax.

Not that I'm not just about dozing off here as it is.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Monday, October 13, 2008

Boston Legal

I love Alan Shore.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The week in review

So what's new?

The weather has turned, and it's time to put away shorts and start wearing pants again. I try to hold out as long as possible, but I think I'll be wearing jeans to the Ducks game today - it's going to be cold tonight. (it's an evening game) We have a leisurely day, with our only care being a hand-off of a new suit that we're delivering to our friends' son in Eugene - other than that, we're just laying low and getting ready for the trip to Eugene and the weekend.

This morning we went on a hunt for my Ducks gloves - green knitted gloves purchased last year at a cold football game - and in the process, we cleaned out both coat closets (we have an adult one and a kid one) and never found those gloves but found about 30 other pairs. I had to laugh at how many pairs of leopard / animal print gloves I've been given as gifts. People really must think I'm Cher! Seriously, I love animal print, but no more gloves. (Or salt and pepper sets, thanks!)

Last week I helped out a friend and picked up her girls at their schools so she could unpack without interruption. They wanted to listen to music and wondered if I had any kids CD's. I turned on the CD player in the car, and it's still got Christmas CD's in it, and they loved that - so I'm already starting to get in the mood for holiday shopping. Scary, but true.

Work is busy, but sales are slow. Buyers are starting to want to buy "on contract," which is surely a sign of the times. My two new listings this week are getting some decent play, and let's hope they are "just what we've been waiting for!" for somebody out there. Pricing homes is an art, and I hope we've hit the right number to prompt a quick sale.

Want to see them?

This one is $1.25 million and of course I want to live there. It's definitely my favorite style of house, and makes me homesick for our PA house, which was very much the same but not as deluxe inside... The seller is moving to California. He's promised me some shoes! LOL! He's in the shoe biz and by shoe biz, I don't automatically mean Nike!

If you want to see the inside of this place, check out the photo gallery on or else come to my open house on Sunday, Oct 19! It's such a groovy pad!

This one is $300,000 and is perfect for someone who wants to retire and putter around in the garden. There are fruit trees, figs,grapes, raspberries, lots of Christmas trees and it is all surrounded by greenspace and a creek. It's a little slice of heaven!

I sold it to a dear couple in 2002, and lately the wife's health is deteriorating and she's now living in an adult care facility. Paul is a flirt and is still about 99% with it, but he just can't hear the phone ring, LOL, which makes it hard to set appointments to show the place - I've driven to Milwaukie three times this week just to talk to him. I had to give him some cell phone lessons!

This one will probably sell quickly - it's a little cream puff! (in fact I just had a phone call on it as I was typing this!)

(gosh I need a hair cut)

Last week I had the distinct pleasure of presenting a $10,000 check from the Windermere Foundation to Ken Cowdery, Executive Director, and Amy Smith, Director of Development for New Avenues for Youth. Do you know about New Avenues? They help homeless teens in Portland get off the street and teach them skills - and they're one of Windermere's favorite organizations to help with our $$.

I bought tickets to Phoenix this week, and we get to be with all the kids on our 27th anniversary We're taking Whit down with us, Cam and Betsy are going down with the U of O band, so well all get to have dinner together. We'll watch, or go to the Ducks game together with Whit, Claire and TJ. Just a little weekend getaway, but we're excited for it.

Time for more coffee, a wardrobe review, to find warm, yellow clothes (it's Homecoming and everyone is supposed to wear yellow) and a little dog walking. Isn't Bean cute?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Dang, this was one tasty drink

This cocktail won the contest for Oregon's new state drink, or some such thing. All I know is that it beat out my friend Kim's amazing drink recipes, and I was shocked that she didn't win. But the drink that DID win is really tasty. It combines beer and whisky, and I can't imagine that I'd like it. But Stacy made them last weekend and I LOVED them. (Them, because I drank several.) YUM. Give it a try. And if you can't find huckleberries, do what Stacy did and make the syrup out of jam.

Hike, Fish & Go Camping Punch
Eastern Oregon
Cheryl Meloy, Portland

Serves 4
5 oz Pendleton Whisky
4 oz (1/3 of 12 oz can) frozen lemonade
4 oz (1/3 of 12 oz can) frozen limeade
4 oz huckleberry syrup
2 bottles Terminal Gravity IPA
Mint sprigs for garnish

Mix together the first four ingredients in large pitcher. Slowly stir in both bottles
of beer. Pour punch into a tall, ice-filled glass. Top with mint sprig and serve.
To make huckleberry syrup: Heat to a slow boil 2 cups berries (fresh or frozen;
you can substitute blueberries for huckleberries) with 1 cup sugar and 2 cups
water. Slow boil for 20 -30 minutes, cool slightly and strain mixture through
fine mesh sieve. Work the mash to get all the fluid through the sieve before
discarding the skins. You may also cool syrup and store in airtight container in the

“This is an easy, fun loving punch. With a warm whisky, flavorful micro brew, and a handful of wild berries, it’s a real Eastern Oregon concoction. A new twist on the youthful Hop, Skip & Go Naked and classic Whisky sour, this recipe crosses the generational gap and quenches the thirst of all revelers seeking a taste of Eastern Oregon’s high country.”

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Babysitting Wednesday

I got to babysit Philippe today!
We had so much fun at the office, meeting various dogs (Ted, Bean, Boomer) and meeting my clients in Milwaukie...(where he remained sleeping like an angel through the entire visit) and finally home for lunch and play.

The old pots and pans trick, with some Captain Crunch to pour and munch, and dogs to sweep up the spoils is always fun!

Nap time! So kissable and cute! I just loved every minute of it.
And his mom got their new house cleaned and a couple of bedrooms unpacked.

My tomatoes

Little yellow ones
Big yellow ones

These are my very first tomatoes!
There are tons more to be picked.

Caprese salad every night until they're gone!

YUM! So glad I planted them!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The End of the Housing Market Freefall

I know we're being inundated with articles on the sinking economy, the housing market, the sub-prime mortgage crisis, foreclosures and other doom and gloom. And while I'm always optimistic, I'm not always looking through rose-colored glasses. My business has definitely been affected.

But this article (the title is the link) in NY Magazine is worth reading.

If you want to downsize, my boomer friends, and don't pick up that bargain before next summer, don't say I didn't warn you. I still think it's a great time to scoop up a rental or a retirement property.