The Right Christmas Wreath For Your Front Door

Choosing the perfect tree is part of any holiday decorating tradition, but finding the right wreath for your front door can really finish off your holiday look and can be a beautiful and elegant addition to your exterior décor.  Choosing the right wreath, however, can be complicated, so here are a few tips to consider for finding a holiday wreath that not only works for your door, but also coordinates with your other holiday decorations and the exterior of your home.

Size

The size of your wreath is an important consideration in making it look its best on your front door.  If you have a large, prominent front door then you’ll want to choose a wreath that matches it well.  A small wreath will get lost on the door and won’t look proportional.

Color

While you may select a wreath based on its appearance and whether it matches your other holiday décor, you will also want to choose a wreath that has colors that complement the color of your door.  If you have mostly red and green holiday decorations, but have a blue door, you may want to consider a blue and silver themed wreath, perhaps hung with white lights, to better complement your front door.

Materials

This is the area where you can really get creative.  From natural to synthetic, from pine to grapevine, there are a number of options from which you can choose.  Again, when selecting a wreath for your front door you’ll want to consider whether it matches not only the other decorations, but the door itself and the style of your home.  For example, if you live in a traditional or historic style home, using natural materials such as greenery and berries may look better than a more modern arrangement.

Decorating for the holidays should always be fun and reflect your personal style. But when selecting particular items for the exterior of your home, it is always a good idea to be sure they accent rather than detract.

 

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Preparing Your Home For Holiday Guests

It’s wonderful having friends and family at your home to share the holidays, but it can also be a lot of work.  Hosting for the holidays comes with some challenges that are best met with preparation and an extra dose of patience.  Here are a few quick tips to get your home ready for your holiday visitors.

Overnight Company

Whether you are expecting guests to spend the night or a surprise visit leaves you scrambling to find bedding for everyone, the simplest way to deal with it is to keep an air bed on hand.  Today’s air beds are a lot more comfortable than they were in the past, and you can buy a quality raised air bed for less than a hundred dollars.  A raised air bed will keep guests off the floor and will feel more like a real bed.

A deflated air bed can be stored easily and blown up in a matter of minutes, so you can save space and still have a comfortable guest bed when you need it.  Having an extra in the house comes in handy for all sorts of holiday guests.

Anticipate Their Needs

Be prepared with things holiday guests may use up or simply forget to bring.  Stock up on things like toilet tissue.  Pick up a few extra toothbrushes and toothpaste. Add a few extra towels as well, to avoid having to do constant laundry.

Buying in bulk can save a lot of money on the household items you go through quickly when extra people are in the house—make a trip to your local warehouse store before your guests arrive.

Clear The Clutter

Nothing makes clutter more obvious, or more of a problem, than having extra people in the house.  When you are expecting guests, grab a few storage bins and put away some of the things that tend to clutter up counter tops.  Make a sweep through the house and grab anything that won’t be needed for a while.  The less general clutter you have, the more room you’ll have for guests and their luggage.

Getting through the holidays smoothly and with as few frustrations as possible can be done—even with holiday guests in your home.  Just be ready for their arrival and anticipate what will be needed ahead of time, so you aren’t running around in search of an extra towel.

 

Thanksgiving Menu Ideas

Thanksgiving is an annual national holiday commemorating a harvest festival celebrated by the Pilgrim Fathers in 1621.  This day, which is used to express gratitude, is observed in the United States on the fourth Thursday in November.  One of the greatest traditions of Thanksgiving is that of a family dinner, which means menu planning is a must.  Here are some Thanksgiving menu ideas that will fill your table and the appetite of your guests:

Main Course

The traditional main entré for Thanksgiving is, of course, turkey.  If this isn’t quite your taste, you may want to consider serving ham instead.   This is a popular alternative and is a pleasing main course for your dinner guests.

Side Dishes

When it comes to serving a meal, the side dishes are almost as important as the entree.  Popular Thanksgiving side dishes include mashed potatoes with turkey gravy, dressing, green beans, sweet potatoes, macaroni and cheese, rolls and cranberries served with cranberry sauce.  If you have a large family, it may be a good idea to prepare several side dishes so that everyone will be able to find something that they like.

Dessert

What meal would be complete without the perfect dessert?  Whether it’s a pumpkin pie, chocolate pie or other favorite flavor, this traditional treat is common at the conclusion of a Thanksgiving dinner.  If you are planning for a large gathering, consider serving several different pies in an effort to accommodate a variety of taste buds.

The Benefits Of A Homemade Meal

Believe it or not, some may choose to dine at a restaurant on Thanksgiving instead of preparing a homemade meal.  Although dining out may be easier, it cannot replace the taste and camaraderie of a family dinner at home.  Many may shy away from preparing a large Thanksgiving meal because it seems intimidating to cook for so many people.  However, with the right recipe, cookware and a little know how, your next holiday meal can be a breeze.

Rounding Up The Perfect Recipes

If you know what to cook, but still need a little help with the details, consider looking for the perfect recipes to turn your meal into a masterpiece.  While many recipes are available online, many turn to cookbooks and/or women’s specialty magazines for popular recipe and preparation ideas.  As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, there is no shortage of publications containing ideas for creating the perfect meal.  Now that you have the perfect menu idea, it’s time to start putting your plan into motion.  By planning ahead, your Thanksgiving meal can be stress free and enjoyable for you as well as for everyone who joins you.  And don’t lose sight of the reason for your efforts – a time for family and friends to celebrate and give thanks.

 

The Year Ahead. What 2017 might mean to you, your home and your other real estate investments.

What are the experts saying about the new year and what you can take away from it.

First of all, let’s take a look at the value of your home. Now there, I have some good news for you. Prices in most parts of Texas and America are expected to keep rising in 2017. The reason is that there aren’t enough homes for sale. But there are still plenty of buyers out there. So the laws of supply and demand are in your favor if you own a home or plan on selling one. Now, it won’t be a huge increase. The National Association of REALTORS believes that by this time next year the median price of a home in the United States will go from its current point of $232,200 to $241,250. That’s an increase of 3.9%. Now it’s not a spike, but after all, up is up. That’s good news for owners who have even greater equity in their homes and investments. Also for sellers, who will see those profits at the closing table.

Now, that low inventory and rising prices are expected to create challenges for home buyers. Especially first time buyers. But, those buyers do have factors in their favor. For one thing, most mortgage lenders are allowing lower credit scores and lower down payments. Up to now, home buyers have enjoyed record low interest rates. Well that’s about to change. Interest rates have started to rise. Not by that much, but they are on the way up. They’ve gone up about half a point since the summer. By the end of 2017 they’re expected to be a half point higher than that. The days of record lows may be behind us, but even so, the rates will continue to be incredibly low and not a barrier to home ownership.

Experts believe there could be some really good news for buyers coming down the line in 2017. And that is more homes are expected to come on the market. That means more choices, less competition, and all that added inventory should help curb those rising prices. You see, the nations home builders are predicting that in 2017 they’ll finally be on tract to build more than a million new homes. That’s up there from after the slump they had after the downturn. Not up there all the way since the home builders ordinary would put up a million and a half homes. But again, up is up and new home construction is headed in the right direction.

So buyers who hang in there might do okay. Especially if they end up getting a home of their own. That would make 2017 a great year. And even better if they are moving from renting to buying because rents are expected to continue to rise throughout 2017.

So, what’s the bottom line? Well in prices, interest rates, mortgage rates, mortgage availability, and inventory we’re seeing positive changes on the horizon. Not massive, epic changes, but slow, steady movement back to be what could be considered a normal market. A balanced market in which buyers and sellers are on more equal footing without either being at a big disadvantage. You could call that a healthy real estate market. And that’s a pretty great outlook as we approach 2017, the year ahead.

Let’s Rodeo San Antonio!

rodeo2Hello Friends,

It’s that time of year again! What a way to kick off the year with San Antonio’s Stock Show & Rodeo.
Whether your looking forward to Food, Entertainment, Rides & Shows the Stock Show and rodeo is sure to provide plenty of fun & goodtimes for the whole family. This is one of my favorite times of the year. here are some fun activities you might consider.

Bar-B-Que Cook-off: The San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo Bar-B-Que Cookoff is an annual event that occurs prior to the start of the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo. Nearly 300 teams of the world’s best Barbequers compete in this championship event. There is live music throughout the day, shopping and plenty of fine Texas Barbeque to sample.

Stock Show Stampede: This annual 4 Mile Run and/or 1.6 Mile Walk allows volunteers and patrons the chance to “get fit” before they “get Rodeo ready”! The race begins at the Gembler Road satellite parking lot and continues around Red Berry Mansion, ending at the Stock Show & Rodeo grounds.

Youth Day: Youth Day is an entire day during the San Antonio Rodeo dedicated to Youth! During this day, 4-H, FFA, & FCCLA members from across Texas gather together to showcase their organizations, activities, & project work. These members set up exhibits and interactive activity booths for young visitors attending the Stock Show & Rodeo. Children are treated to arts and crafts, games, demonstrations, sweet treats, and educational activities. All the fun of Youth Day is included with your rodeo or grounds ticket.

Rodeos dare cowboys to test their abilities to the fullest such as bull riding, bareback horse riding, and steer wrestling. The livestock show gives children a firsthand look at the life of a Texas rancher and lets them meet the many animals the ranchers bring with them for judging and auction. Kids can participate in many of the activities they would experience on a ranch, such as milking a cow, and play with some of the actual animals at a petting zoo and other interactive exhibits.

Visitors should be sure to spend some time enjoying the grounds, where clothes and custom boots can be bought from one of hundreds of vendors selling items of the western variety walk through the art displays showing beautiful work and talent from local students. The family fair and carnival offer everything from authentic barbeque and funnel cakes to thrilling rides and family friendly shows.
Be sure to tell them Scott Myers sent you! Have fun & Enjoy!

Scott Myers
Broker/Owner of Century 21 Scott Myers
(210) 479-1222 or Toll-Free (888) 868-1222
email: Scott.Myers@Century21.com

5 Things to do on the Riverwalk

Hello again,

Today I want to share some great information with everyone and some of the things to do in San Antonio & the Riverwalk.

San Antonio is one of the top tourist destinations in the country because of our rapid growth and our diverse culture. There are many exciting things to do while visiting the Riverwalk downtown from Entertainment to Fine Dining. The riverwalk offer a unique and fun prospective for all age groups.

Here is a list of top 5 things to do at the Riverwalk,

1.) Eat, Drink & Be Merry
Over fifty restaurants, bistros, cafes, clubs, bars — most with quaint outdoor patios — line the River Walk as it meanders its way through downtown San Antonio. There is everything from stellar Tex Mex to haute cuisine and locally-owned spots as well as popular international names like the Hard Rock Cafe. Find the right spot to eat.


2.) Land & Art Scapes
Few visitors venture beyond the downtown River Walk but it’s well worth it. Explore the Museum Reach, north of downtown, and watch for the  twelve art installations on the river banks. Stop along the way at  the San Antonio Museum of Art and the Southwest School of Art, then the boat ride ends at the 125-year-old Pearl Brewery complex, now home to restaurants, an outdoor amphitheater, a Saturday farmers market, eclectic shops and the Culinary Institute of America — San Antonio. If you go south from downtown, the south fork of the river meanders through the stately King William Historic District  all the way to the Blue Star arts complex, an eclectic enclave of creative souls, unusual shops and galleries, public art scattered about, and a brew pub.


3.) Sunset Cruise
Lots of folks take a tour of the River Walk aboard a river cruiser, but few know that you can take asunset taxi ride from downtown, along the Museum Reach, to the Pearl Brewery. Only in the dark will you be able to appreciate the full impact of  the art installations that line the banks, all of which use light in creative ways. They were created by some of the most interesting names in the art world. Museums, schools, residences and commercial buildings often are lit in startling and unusual ways.


4.) Secret Places To Shop
Don’t leave without a pink cowboy hat of course — pick one up at any of the River Walk curio shops. Less obvious but also right on the River Walk:  La Villita Historic Arts Village;  The Pearl BrewerySan Antonio Museum of Art Store and Southwest School of Art Gallery Shop. For major mall goers, the Rivercenter Mall— with over 60 stores — hugs the banks of the River Walk lagoon.


5.) Run, Walk, Hike, Bring Your Dog
The River Walk is a long linear park, beautifully landscaped, with great sidewalks. The less congested places are perfect for serious exercising or romantic strolls. The River Walk is eight miles long. In a few years, it will be a 15-mile masterpiece that weaves the city’s past and future together, starting north of the city at Brackenridge Park (San Antonio’s Central Park) and traveling south all the way to the four Spanish colonial missions south of downtown.

ImageScott Myers

Broker/Owner of Century 21 Scott Myers

(210) 479-1222 or Toll-Free (888) 868-1222

email: Scott.Myers@Century21.com

A Great Downtown San Antonio Museum and Restaurant

One of my co-workers recently told me about a Saturday that he and his wife spent downtown playing tourist, and he reminded me about a great museum I haven’t been to in several years, as well as one of my favorite downtown restaurants. I asked him to contribute a guest post to my Blog, and here it is:

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Submitted by Richard House (Guest Blogger)

My wife and I recently decided to spend a day downtown playing tourist, and we ended up spending half of it at the Institute of Texan Cultures. The museum was originally part of HemisFair ’68 as the Texas Pavilion, and is one of the few exhibits from the 1968 fair that has remained as a permanent fixture on the former fair grounds. When I think of Texan Cultures, I recall my middle school Texas history class and think of the six national flags that have flown over what is now the state of Texas, but this museum reminds me that there is a lot more cultural diversity in the state than just the familiar “Six Flags Over Texas”.

The main exhibits of the museum are all on one floor, which is divided into sections for the various cultures that have influenced the development of the state. Each area is filled with artifacts, photographs and narrative discussions of the history of the immigrations and contributions of the various cultures and individuals.

The first exhibit you encounter on entering covers prehistoric humans that are thought to have inhabited various parts of what is now Texas, followed by the several Native American tribes that were encountered by the first European settlers. Other exhibits describe the many cultures that have come together to make Texas what it is today, including: English, Irish, Scotch, Hungarian, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, African-American, Jewish, Czech, German, Wendish, Italian, Swiss, Japanese, Chinese, Polish, Belgian, Dutch, Greek, French, Lebanese and Tejano.

After several hours at the museum, it was time for lunch so we took a 10-minute walk to Schilo’s Delicatessen at the corner of Commerce and S. Alamo St. If you are a visitor to San Antonio and have had your fill of our famous Mexican Food and Bar-B-Que, give Schilo’s a try. I had a cup of split pea soup, wiener-schnitzel and German potato salad, and my wife had a pastrami sandwich. Shilo’s is also famous for its homemade root beer. Everything was freshly made and delicious, and a great example of the influence of German immigrants in Texas.

 

 

Scott Myers

Broker/Owner of Century 21 Scott Myers

(210) 479-1222 or Toll-Free (888) 868-1222

email: Scott.Myers@Century21.com