Happy Valentine’s Day!

Just a few fun facts as you are going about your day…

  1. Cupid is the mini-god of love and son of Venus, the absolute goddess of seduction, beauty, and love—guess it runs in the family! This chubby little guy shoots arrows (or flowers, depending on the story), hoping to make two people fall in love. According to legend, Cupid is the great creator of all couples in the entire universe!
  2. The first Valentine’s Day card was from the Duke of Orléans who sent it to his wife with a poem, in the 15th century. As luck would have it, his mother’s name was—Valentine! FUN FACT:around the world, people send each other roughly a billion cards decorated with red hearts and flowers?
  3. Is Valentine’s Day a celebration of chocolate? The most popular gift today…a box of chocolates, likely in the shape of a heart. In the US, every year, chocolate sales reach or exceed $20 billion!
  4. Did you know…Giving roses is one way to express your love, but not all colors send the same message. A red rose symbolizes passion; white=purity and sincerity of your feelings; yellow,=friendship; orange=carnal desire; and pink= loyalty and sweetness.
  5. The number of roses you give on Valentine’s Day also has meaning. One rose is good for a whirlwind romance. Giving two means you’re trying to apologize. A bouquet of 12 is reserved for marriage proposals, and 36 is to profess true love. And, if your wallet can handle it, 101 roses signifies the craziest love of all—especially when you think of the bill you’ll be getting from your florist!

Make certain your special someone knows how you feel and to all, Happy Valentine’s Day!

images

Vicki Reed

Did you know…

…that Indianapolis has a thriving live theatre community?  It can be anything from the Broadway Series to local actors/actresses in local productions and the list of 2015 productions is amazing!  We have so many options in Indy, large to small…

Clowes Hall at Butler is always a great place to see a play, this year hosting Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Beauty and the Beast and for those of us of a certain age…Dirty Dancing!

There are a number of smaller community playhouses us in the area – Spotlight Theatre in Beech Grove, Putnam County Playhouse, Buck Creek Playhouse – all great opportunities for a night out, a little culture, for a very reasonable price!  Want to try out your own acting abilities, many of these smaller playhouses have opportunities for auditions!

One of my favorite productions every year is the University of Indianapolis Dinner Theatre – always entertaining, my friends and I have been going for years!  This year’s performance is the female version of The Odd Couple!  I expect that the food will be good, the production excellent and the company even better.  UIndy hosts a number of productions throughout the year, I’ve seen several and never been disappointed.

For more information about all of these productions and venues, click the links within the post or visit Indy Arts Guide or Indianapolis Theatre for more information…I’ll be checking out some of them…will you?

theatre

Vicki Reed

 

Time to Sell?

Thinking about selling your home?  Just a few things to think about…

Renovations: The changes that make your house work for you may not appeal to potential buyers. Not everybody loves that bright blue paint color — no matter how much you personally adore it. Make sure any big changes you make will increase, rather than decrease, your home’s value.

ALWAYS leave during open houses and showings: No hovering!  Current homeowners hovering over potential buyers as they tour the house…it’s a lot of pressure and can prevent them from giving honest feedback that could ultimately help you sell your home.

Waiting to list in the Spring: Most people house hunt in the spring and summer, but that’s also when most people list their homes. List yours when it’s available and you’ll reach those buyers who need a home now and aren’t finding much on the market.

Setting the price too high: What your home is worth to you and what it’s worth on the current market can be vastly different. Take a good look at the comparables provided by your REALTOR® and follow their advice…we are the experts!  Ignore Zillow…the Zestimates they offer are just WRONG!

Not doing enough marketing: Just putting up a “for sale” sign isn’t enough. Talk with your REALTOR® about other options, like online listings with virtual tours to attract buyers who aren’t looking on Craigslist!

Not getting a real estate agent: Unless you’ve had plenty of experience, going the “for sale by owner” route is probably not a smart bet. A REALTOR® can give you insights, marketing advice and, most importantly, can get your property on the multiple-listing service (or MLS or if you are in Indianapolis, BLC), which gets it in front of other agents.

Not staging your house: You need to help buyers envision themselves in your home. This includes removing any clutter and overly personal items (like family photographs) and making sure furniture flows well and demonstrates the purpose of each room.  Don’t go overboard, sometimes you can declutter and depersonalize to the point that the potential buyers can’t envision anything!  Discuss with your REALTOR® and if they don’t have a good eye, bet they know a good stager!

Okay, now are you ready?  Call, text or email me and let’s get started!

sold

Vicki Reed

 

Is your home haunted?

My grandparents home is!  My Dad has recounted stories of when he was a teenager and sitting at the kitchen table and an old man in a sweater walked up where stairs had been prior to a 1950’s era reno that moved the stairs to the upstairs to the living room!  And then not to many years ago, he was visiting my grandparents and they were standing in the living room and a hand print appeared on the back of the loveseat next to the window and the curtain moved out of the way, like someone was leaning to look out the window!

My Grandmother routinely swore that her brother Albert was also there, she would see him leaning against the door jamb like he had done when he visited, one night after a bathroom visit, she literally ran into – well, I guess that would be through – him in the hallway on her way back to bed!  Bear in mind, Albert was killed in WW2 and buried in France!

There is an article in today’s Indianapolis Star, “3 haunted destinations in Midwest offer scary good times” offering an idea for a weekend getaway (click here for the article), the locations are Alton Illinois , Bardstown Kentucky and Marietta Ohio.  If that’s your idea of fun, looks like it could be a great time!

But what about Indy?  There are schools, bridges and of course Crown Hill Cemetary, but here are 3 that seem to show up on everyone’s list of REAL Haunted Houses:

Hannah House

Built by local farmer and politician Alexander Hannah in 1858, this south side manor maintains a prominent place in Indianapolis‘s storied past. A Historic Landmark, the Hannah House was a safe haven for escaping slaves as part of the Underground Railroad. This designation also plays into its reputation as a hotbed of paranormal activity, as an undocumented fire purportedly claimed the lives of several refugees one fateful night. The spirits of those victims, and of Hannah himself, are said to roam the corridors of the estate. The Hannah House is open to the public and even offers the chance to stay overnight and do a little ghost sleuthing…if you dare!

Central State Hospital

Originally christened the “Indiana Hospital for the Insane,” Central State Hospital opened its doors in 1848. From a single building housing five patients, Central State grew into a veritable campus where thousands of patients were treated for various ailments, both mental and physical. At its height in the middle of the 20th century, Central State encompassed nearly 100 acres, with two main buildings, several peripheral treatment centers, and enough businesses to have formed its own town. Not surprisingly, given the nature of its existence, the grounds of Central State Hospital, located on the near west side of Indy, is reportedly ripe with ghostly happenings.

The House of Blue Lights

Located on the city’s east side, the House of Blue Lights was an estate owned by Skiles Test, and it was the subject of many spooky tales involving caskets, dogs, cats, misty blue lights, and other goodies! Although the house is long gone now, much of the property remains as it was during the heyday of these stories, and is home to the Skiles Test nature park. The Test grave is also a popular ghostly destination in nearby Crown Hill cemetery.

Do you believe???  Or are you like me and the thought scares the bejeezus out of you?

download

Vicki Reed

Historic Irvington Halloween Festival…

Indy is just full of fun communities to call home, since this past spring when I helped my friend Kate buy her new home in Irvington, I’ve found myself spending more time in the area and exploring the many restaurants and shops in the are and am even considering a move to the area in the future!  Kate kept mentioning the Halloween Festival and I finally had to find out what it was all about…this is from their website:

For over 60 years, the Historic Irvington Halloween Festival has brought together thousands of residents, dozens of neighborhood organizations, and countless Eastside businesses in a fun-filled celebration of our heritage and community. The festival and its associated events are designed to bring awareness to the community, to bring commerce to local business and sponsors, and to provide fun for the children of Irvington and Indianapolis. The celebration now encompasses a week of events including a 5 mile run, a scholarship pageant, musicians, contests, Halloween-themed movies, storytelling, ghost tours, live theater, roller derby, a haunted puppet show and dozens of other events.

The Irvington Halloween Festival is organized by the Historic Irvington Community Council, a 501(c)3 organization that provides a voice to the city on Irvington issues such as public services, zoning and works to improve the community and the lives of its residents.

A Brief History of Irvington

Irvington was founded by Jacob Julian and Sylvester Johnson, who developed 300 acres into residential plots four miles east of Indianapolis. Named after 19th century writer Washington Irving, Irvington was annexed by the city of Indianapolis in 1902. Western Christian University (now Butler University) relocated to Irvington in 1873 and stayed there until 1928.

The neighborhood is situated on Washington Street, which is the route of the historic National Road, a National Scenic Byway. US 40 was formerly routed along the road. Through the early 1900s, a commuter rail/trolley system ran from Irvington to downtown Indianapolis along US 40. Ideally located just 10 minutes East of downtown Indianapolis, Irvington is a strong and growing community of quaint and magnificent homes located on tree-lined historic streets. Successful restaurants, coffee shops, retailers and parks all contribute to Irvington’s charm. The Irvington community is founded on strong ties to its historic past and is a great place to raise a family.

So if you are looking for something fun to do this week, check this out!

HIHF_Logo_indent1

Vicki Reed

Do you believe?

I read this story on Facebook today…don’t know if it’s true, but I choose to believe that there there is a greater being guiding our lives.  Many of you know (many of you may not…), but I have struggled with my faith for some time and have only recently began the trek back to the fold and putting my faith and future into God‘s hands.  The beginnings of this journey have been amazing and the more I walk in faith the greater my life is becoming.  Read this story, it may warm your heart…it may make you cry (I did, but I cry at commercials!) or you may not care, but I do and hope to be able to repay all of the love and support my family, friends and fellow Keller Williams agents have shown me during this past year…enjoy:

Good morning said a woman as she walked up to the man sitting on the ground.

The man slowly looked up.

This was a woman clearly accustomed to the finer things of life. Her coat was new.. She looked like she had never missed a meal in her life.

His first thought was that she wanted to make fun of him, like so many others had done before.. “Leave me alone,” he growled….

To his amazement, the woman continued standing.

She was smiling — her even white teeth displayed in dazzling rows. “Are you hungry?” she asked.

“No,” he answered sarcastically. “I’ve just come from dining with the president. Now go away.”

The woman’s smile became even broader. Suddenly the man felt a gentle hand under his arm.

“What are you doing, lady?” the man asked angrily. “I said to leave me alone.

Just then a policeman came up. “Is there any problem, ma’am?” he asked..

“No problem here, officer,” the woman answered. “I’m just trying to get this man to his feet. Will you help me?”

The officer scratched his head. “That’s old Jack. He’s been a fixture around here for a couple of years. What do you want with him?”

“See that cafeteria over there?” she asked. “I’m going to get him something to eat and get him out of the cold for awhile.”

“Are you crazy, lady?” the homeless man resisted. “I don’t want to go in there!” Then he felt strong hands grab his other arm and lift him up. “Let me go, officer. I didn’t do anything.”

“This is a good deal for you, Jack” the officer answered. “Don’t blow it..”

Finally, and with some difficulty, the woman and the police officer got Jack into the cafeteria and sat him at a table in a remote corner. It was the middle of the morning, so most of the breakfast crowd had already left and the lunch bunch had not yet arrived…

The manager strode across the cafeteria and stood by his table. “What’s going on here, officer?” he asked. “What is all this, is this man in trouble?”

“This lady brought this man in here to be fed,” the policeman answered.

“Not in here!” the manager replied angrily. “Having a person like that here is bad for business..”

Old Jack smiled a toothless grin. “See, lady. I told you so. Now if you’ll let me go. I didn’t want to come here in the first place.”

The woman turned to the cafeteria manager and smiled……. “Sir, are you familiar with Eddy and Associates, the banking firm down the street?”

“Of course I am,” the manager answered impatiently. “They hold their weekly meetings in one of my banquet rooms.”

“And do you make a godly amount of money providing food at these weekly meetings?”

“What business is that of yours?”

I, sir, am Penelope Eddy, president and CEO of the company.”

“Oh.”

The woman smiled again. “I thought that might make a difference.” She glanced at the cop who was busy stifling a giggle. “Would you like to join us in a cup of coffee and a meal, officer?”

“No thanks, ma’am,” the officer replied. “I’m on duty.”

“Then, perhaps, a cup of coffee to go?”

“Yes, ma’am. That would be very nice.”

The cafeteria manager turned on his heel, “I’ll get your coffee for you right away, officer.”

The officer watched him walk away. “You certainly put him in his place,” he said.

“That was not my intent. Believe it or not, I have a reason for all this.”

She sat down at the table across from her amazed dinner guest. She stared at him intently.. “Jack, do you remember me?”

Old Jack searched her face with his old, rheumy eyes. “I think so — I mean you do look familiar.”

“I’m a little older perhaps,” she said. “Maybe I’ve even filled out more than in my younger days when you worked here, and I came through that very door, cold and hungry.”

“Ma’am?” the officer said questioningly. He couldn’t believe that such a magnificently turned out woman could ever have been hungry.

“I was just out of college,” the woman began. “I had come to the city looking for a job, but I couldn’t find anything. Finally I was down to my last few cents and had been kicked out of my apartment. I walked the streets for days. It was February and I was cold and nearly starving. I saw this place and walked in on the off chance that I could get something to eat.”

Jack lit up with a smile. “Now I remember,” he said.. “I was behind the serving counter. You came up and asked me if you could work for something to eat. I said that it was against company policy.”

“I know,” the woman continued. “Then you made me the biggest roast beef sandwich that I had ever seen, gave me a cup of coffee, and told me to go over to a corner table and enjoy it. I was afraid that you would get into trouble… Then, when I looked over and saw you put the price of my food in the cash register, I knew then that everything would be all right.”

“So you started your own business?” Old Jack said.

“I got a job that very afternoon. I worked my way up. Eventually I started my own business that, with the help of God, prospered.” She opened her purse and pulled out a business card.. “When you are finished here, I want you to pay a visit to a Mr. Lyons…He’s the personnel director of my company. I’ll go talk to him now and I’m certain he’ll find something for you to do around the office.” She smiled. “I think he might even find the funds to give you a little advance so that you can buy some clothes and get a place to live until you get on your feet… If you ever need anything, my door is always opened to you.”

There were tears in the old man’s eyes. “How can I ever thank you?” he said.

“Don’t thank me,” the woman answered. “To God goes the glory. Thank Jesus…… He led me to you.”

Outside the cafeteria, the officer and the woman paused at the entrance before going their separate ways….

“Thank you for all your help, officer,” she said.

“On the contrary, Ms. Eddy,” he answered. “Thank you. I saw a miracle today, something that I will never forget. And.. And thank you for the coffee.”

God is going to shift things around for you today and let things work in your favor.

God closes doors no man can open & God opens doors no man can close..

Thoughts?  Would love to hear from you…

Motorcycle Details

Vicki Reed

 

Co-Op? Not what you think!

When you google Co-Op’s in Indianapolis, the results go to farm or food cooperatives…but did you know that we also have Co-Op homes in Indy?  I have personally assisted my dear friend Kate in her purchase of her new home…a Co-Op in Irvington!  I learned a lot during this process and thought I would share some it.

When I think of Co-Op’s, I think of those fabulous Park Avenue places in New York City…you know the ones, millions of dollars, thousands of square feet, very exclusive with a fabulous view.  In Irvington, there are 2 neighborhoods – Maplewood Court and Irvington Court.  A housing cooperative is a legal entity consisting of one or more residential buildings, a distinctive form of home ownership that has many characteristics that make it different than other residential arrangements such as single family ownership, condominiums and renting.

The corporation is membership based, with membership granted by way of a share purchase in the cooperative. Each shareholder in the legal entity is granted the right to occupy one housing unit. A primary advantage of the housing cooperative is the pooling of the members’ resources so that their buying power is leveraged, thus lowering the cost per member in all the services and products associated with home ownership.  Members, through their elected representatives, screen and select who may live in the cooperative.

Kate purchased her new home in Maplewood Court, these were built in 1917 and to the credit of the Board, somewhere along the way they added garages to the property along with a caretaker apartment and caretaker.  These units boast an unfinished basement with Laundry hook-up, main floor has a living room, dining room and kitchen – some have taken down the wall between the kitchen and dining which really opens the space – 2 bedrooms and a bath on the 2nd floor and most have finished the attic that really adds to the usable space!  They all have front porches and lots of period detail.  Kate’s unit even has the original doorbell on the beautiful wood and leaded glass front door!

Closing was the simplest transaction I’ve been involved in during my career…money transferred, a few documents signed and well, what took the longest was the issuing of the Stock Certificate – one of the board members actually used calligraphy and issued it from the original book of blank stock certificates!

Great process, lots of lessons learned, Kate has a fantastic new home and all is well.  Living in Irvington was Kate’s dream….what can I do to turn your dreams into an address?

DAKOTA2-articleLarge

Vicki Reed