Wow…it’s the end of 2013!

So what did you accomplish in 2013?  I had my best year to date in Real Estate and am moving into 2014 with 4 active listings, 2 pending sales and 2 active buyers!  My volume as a single agent was $2.5 million in homes sold!  I want to double that in 2014…anyone want to take a bet on it?

The biggest deal for me personally is one of the pending transactions (and one I’ve mentioned several times) and that is the sale of my Grandparents farm.  The last few weeks have been challenging as we remove my family‘s stamp on the farm and ready it for the new owners…the main reason I’m so excited about this is that it removes a worry from my Dad and Uncle Bob and takes a responsibility off their already full plates.

This year has been challenging in other ways, I found out that I’m going to be a Great-Aunt…yeah, I already know that I’m a great aunt, but my beautiful niece Jordan Pyles is expecting March 25…we have a family pool going for date, weight and length…hope I win!  Jordan also completed her high school education in December and will go through graduation ceremonies with the rest of the class in June.

I’m working on selling my home, haven’t quite accomplished it yet, but I know I don’t want to carry the burden of that too big house for another year.  I’ve paid off debt and am working through the Dave Ramsey Total Money Makeover…by the end of 2014, I will be debt free and living a cash based lifestyle – so excited about the next chapter in my life.

What’s amazing to me is that I will turn 50 in August of 2014…I remember when 50 seemed so old, now it feels very young!

2014 is going to be an amazing year for all of us and for the first time in a very long time, I’m babysitting on NYE – well, they aren’t babies, they are 11, hanging out with Riley Ray tonight and one of her friends while my sister and brother-in-law go out for a few hours!

So for 2014, the family will have a new baby, 2 high school graduates (Allyson is graduating too!), my 50th birthday and my Dad’s 75!  Sounds like a good year already and it doesn’t start until tomorrow. Happy New Year everyone, I hope your 2013 was great and your 2014 will be even better!

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Vicki Reed

Ah…memories…

Many of you know, I’m in the fortunate position to be the Realtor who sold my Grandparents farm recently and as any full service daughter would do, I’ve been working alongside my parents and uncle to clear out the house, garage and barns for the new owners, looks like we might be ready to close in early January!

I know I’ve written before about the tears and memories, and the weekend before Christmas was especially exhausting because we were just getting started, but today was the first time I didn’t feel like crying most of the day.  It’s been a lot of work and we have so much more to go…but I thought I would share of few of my favorite memories with the next few posts…since it’s Christmas, let’s start with a few Christmas memories…

Growing up, our Christmas followed a very strict routine…Christmas Eve at Aunt Ruth and Uncle Loren’s…with the entire McKay side of the family.  For most of my youth, that meant a big brick house painted red on Main Street in Vevay and later a much smaller home overlooking the river – boy did that house ever seem small with so many of us crammed into it!

Dad worked 2nd Shift most Christmases, so Mom and my sisters, brother and I would go for dinner and gifts then come home and watch the Sound of Music on Channel 3…for you youngins out there, that was before we were able to get satellite out in the country and we only got 2 channels!  Then off to bed with us!  A lot of the time, we would all sleep in the upstairs bedroom that belonged to Paula and I…then it was Christmas morning!  So much fun!  Mom always worked really hard to get us each exactly what we wanted, heck she still does!

After a quick breakfast, it was off to Mamma and Pappa Reed’s for Christmas lunch, gifts and and our annual picture of Dad stretched out on the couch asleep…we added a Christmas bow for an accessory and took a picture…we have one for every year up through 1988…He was always exhausted because he never got enough rest at Christmas.  It was always a great time, my favorite year was when the “old” pond was frozen over and Pappa dug out his ice skates and we all went ice skating – he was really good!  So much fun, then back to the house for hot chocolate and pie!

Then after a great afternoon there, we went back home and Mom’s parents – Granny and Pappa Howie would come up to see what we had all gotten…I have a picture somewhere of Granny sitting on our bean bag chairs we had gotten one year – a better pic would have been her trying to get up!

Bear with me, more memories to come…let’s talk about Easter next time!

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Vicki Reed

Recap of 12 Wishes of Christmas from last season….

It seems like yesterday that I was writing the 12 Wishes of Christmas series, hard to believe it’s been a year!  I thought it was time to run through them again and see where we are in 2013…

Wish # 1 – I wish for my family and friends to find happiness and success in their everyday lives….let’s see…we’ve had a few job changes and promotions, a pregnancy (slightly unexpected), a wedding (no it’s not the same one), a couple of deaths and a more successful year in real estate for me.  All in all, things improving or at least moving in the right direction…

Wish # 2 – My second wish is that everyone feel loved and valued…I found that over the last year, I have made an impact on a number of lives of friends and even the new agents in our Keller Williams office…I simply do what I do and several have graciously shared with me that I have had an impact on their lives…makes me cry tears of joy, but I’m weepy at this time of year anyway!

Wish #3 – Everyone remember to be human, not just during the holiday season, but all year long.  I have tried to pay more attention to those around me this year, held doors for others whose load was greater than mine, taken the time to speak when in the past I might have been caught up in my mind (or my phone!) and not paid attention.  I intend to continue this trend, it gives me a warm feeling inside and I’m sure it translates to my outside!

Wish #4 – we, as a society, remember the victims of senseless acts of violence and make changes in how we treat ourselves, our loved ones, and one another.  This was written immediately following the Newton school shooting.  I struggle with our media as it creates a “psuedo-celebrity” of those who commit the crime and doesn’t focus enough on the victims.  They are looking for their “15 minutes”, let’s not give it to them!

Wish # 5 – is that society curb their consumerism.  I don’t know about you, but I truly need…nothing.  I have clothes, furniture, shoes (way more than I need, but love them all!), bags, accessories, well, just everything!  in 2013, I bought 2 long-sleeve white t-shirts (on sale total was $21) and a pair of black sandals on sale for $20 – mine broke in the middle of my day and Payless was closer!  That’s it…what did you buy?

Wish # 6 – goes along with Wish # 5 is that we as individuals work to reduce our debt on a path to eliminating it.  I have!  I can say that I no longer carry any credit card debt!  I do still owe my Dad for a few things, but he will be taken care of by the end of 2014…on thing at a time.  I’ve also working on The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey – the man makes sense, wish someone had introduced me to this years ago!

Wish # 7 – that we turn off  the television more often and lessen the constant bombardment of advertising, noise and a 24/7 news cycle.  I’m the first to admit, I am a TV junkie…but only for the noise! I am one of those people who have the TV on all the time, I am likely not really watching it, but it is on while I’m reading, working at home, or cooking, eating…I’m still working on this one!

Wish # 8 – that I would win the lottery…I’ve won about $12 this year, haven’t been able to make a big change with this, but I’m still wishing!

Wish # 9 – that we open ourselves to receiving help from others when we need it and not being shy about asking for help from our family and friends.  This can be humbling, but sometime necessary…be grateful that you have people in your life who are so willing to share what they have and be ready to share with them in the future.

Wish # 10 – that we curb our excess eating and drinking and work toward a healthier lifestyle.  I have failed miserably on this one…my 2013 has been very stressful, the hope is that 2014 will be easier and I can get myself together!

Wish # 11 – that we allow ourselves more spontaneity in our lives and be more lighthearted, it is important to see the joy in your life.  I have continued to enjoy this aspect of my life as a Realtor – if I have a “break” in my schedule…I love the ability to pop in and have lunch with a friend or stop by a clients home…try to find it for yourself next year!

Wish # 12 – I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and my wish is that all your wishes for positive change come true.  Ditto for 2014!

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Vicki Reed

Indianapolis Symphony Yuletide Celebration

In its 28th year on the Hilbert Circle Theatre stage, the Yuletide Celebration is still considered Indiana‘s greatest holiday tradition. Five-time Grammy Award-winner and Indiana favorite Sandi Patty returns to take the stage with Jack Everly, the ISO and a cast of Broadway’s best singers and dancers.  For those of us who are fans of The Sound of Music and to story of Captain and Maria von Trapp…The von Trapp Family Singers, the great-grandchildren of Captain von Trapp, performing a Sound of Music medley and other classic holiday music.

Other highlights include a Holiday Motown Medley, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas and of course, the Tap Dancing Santas! And as always, you can enjoy pre-concert holiday cheer with cookies and wassail for sale, the magnificent Christmas tree in the main lobby, and live reindeer in the front of the theatre.

There is still time to see it this year and I highly recommend it!  I had the opportunity to attend last night with my friends as well as clients, the Denkers and a great time was enjoyed by all! Below are the dates and times of the remaining shows this season…you really don’t want to miss this!

December 14, 2pm & 8pm
December 15, 2pm & 6pm
December 17, 7:30pm*
December 18, 7:30pm*
December 19, 7:30pm
December 20, 8pm
December 21, 2pm** & 8pm**
December 22, 2pm** & 6pm**
December 23, 2pm** & 8pm**

Click here for more information…heck there is still time to go tonight!

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Vicki Reed

Aren’t we pushing it just a bit?

Well…Thanksgiving as a holiday seems to be fading into oblivion…The Hallmark Channel started running Christmas movies November 1 and now, instead of waiting for the traditional “Black Friday“, many retailers are opting to join those retailers who saw favorable sales last year by opening on Thanksgiving evening and starting their Black Friday deals on Thursday!

Whatever happened to the traditional Thanksgiving?  No stores open for shopping except a few grocery stores so that you can pick up that can of cranberry glob that everyone serves and i’ve never seen anyone eat!  Now Wal-Mart, which is always open, will start their Black Friday deals at 6:00 p.m., Macy’s is opening some stores, Target and Kohl’s as well.  Is it really the wave of the future?  I know there has been some panic because of the late date of Thanksgiving this year (the 28th – Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad – 51 years! and Happy Birthday to my cousin Angie who was born the day my parents married!) only leaves 3 weeks between the holiday’s, but it seems that we are trying to wipe Thanksgiving off the calendar!  Maybe it’s the turkey’s idea…hmm, something to think about!

Will you be shopping on Thanksgiving?  Are the deals really worth it?  Would love to hear from you!  Me…I’ll be watching movies and lounging…in my very best sweats!

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Vicki Reed

Don’t you love seeing those old movies again on the BIG screen?

The Historic Artcraft Theatre in Franklin is setting your Halloween stage with a “Monster Mania” weekend!

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and next weekend, you can catch Young Frankenstein on the big screen!

Monster movies not your thing?  How about High Noon (for those of you old enough to know why it was a great movie) They are having a fund raising event November 2 – Cartoons for Cans, who misses Bugs Bunny?  Classic cartoons on the big screen…price of admission – 1 can of food…sounds like a deal to me!

The Christmas movie selection this year is excellent:  Elf, A Christmas Story (my fav!), White Christmas and another fan favorite…Christmas Vacation!  Yes, you can see all these and more on the BIG screen again for a mere $5 a person (or less if you are:  $4.00 for Military with ID; $4.00 for College Students with ID; $4.00 for Seniors 55 and over;
$3.00 for children 12 and under!).  For special events, check with the Box Office…so much less expensive than the big theatre’s and the popcorn and cokes are cheaper too!

The schedule for the first half of 2014 is out too…who wants to see American Graffiti on the BIG screen?

This theatre is truly a treasure, take your children and grandchildren and introduce them to movies that are so much more than explosions, murder, drugs, adultery…Annie’s coming in January, it would be a great place to start!

I’ve been introducing my nieces to Gidget (and Moondoggy!), Doris Day, Cary Grant, Rock Hudson and so many more for years…and at least 1 of them loves them as much as I do.  Movies can be entertaining, original and wholesome(?) not sure that is the right word, but something you aren’t embarrassed to take your kids to see.

Check out the Historic Artcraft Theatre in Franklin Indiana and enjoy yourself!

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Vicki Reed

 

 

First Friday…huh?

Any idea what First Friday is?  What about IDADA?

Well, IDADA is the Indianapolis Downtown Artists and Dealers Association and the First Friday of each month, they sponsor The IDADA First Friday Art Tour.  This is IDADA’s longest-running program.  It is a free, self-guided tour that happens on the first Friday of every month and that is open to the public.  The tour includes artist studios and art galleries that are members of IDADA and located in the downtown area.  The IDADA First Friday Art Tour venues open their doors from about 6:00-9:00pm (or even later in some locations) to allow people to see their artwork.  There is no distinct beginning or ending point to the tour—people are encouraged to hop from studios to galleries as they please!  Each month, IDADA publishes a brochure that is available at participating locations and that is also available on the IDADA website.  The brochure includes a map of all of the IDADA First Friday venues as well as an alphabetical listing that explains what is going on at each venue.

I was fortunate to have been invited to attend a special showing for my friend and fantastic artist Patty Coulter  last Friday.  Patty had entered a contest last Fall to design a special edition wine label for Mallow Run Winery...and she won and Mallow Run Winery sponsored a showing of her work during First Friday!  Her beautiful design is on the Impression Pinot Grigio – LIMITED EDITION LABEL

An instant palate-pleaser with rich flavors of ripe peach and pear and a lingering finish of refreshing grapefruit. Perfect with grilled fish, or try it with spicy chicken enchiladas. Label artwork by local artist Patty Coulter, in a proud partnership with the Greater Greenwood Arts Council; proceeds from the sale of this great wine will be donated to promote artists and art awareness in the community.

Patty is a woman of many talents, she also owns and operates Spectrum Flooring Services in Greenwood.  Spectrum Flooring Services was founded in 2005 on the premise that quality flooring, backed by full manufacturer’s warranty and expert worry-free installations, could be sold at a minimum markup, in sufficient volume to be profitable.  They consistently live up to that that philosophy and their business and experience is strong.  In addition to being a fantastic artist and business woman, Patty is an expert Interior Designer and Stager.  If you need flooring, try Patty and Spectrum, you will be happy.

Are you ready for a new home for that flooring?  Need new carpet before we put your home on the market?  Let’s talk!

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Vicki Reed

Home Inventory??? Why?

The Richmond Hills tragedy (click here if you want to know more about this senseless act) and a recent home invasion robbery in my own neighborhood reminds me why it is important to know exactly what you own.  I know, we’ve always been told…take pictures, keep your receipts, yada, yada, yada…do you have all of those things?  What about the new IPad you just got for Christmas?  The engagement ring when he proposed at New Year‘s?  The family silver you inherited from your Grandmother when she passed last year?

I have a solution for you!  Please let me introduce you to The Inventory Lady – Jo Soard.  Jo is a bonded, insured and certified third party Inventory Professional who will document your home and business assets, provide you written and digital documentation as well as secure a copy off site for future needs and will update your inventory annually at minimal cost.  A member of American Home Inventory Professionals (not in the Indianapolis area?  Click here to find someone in you area!), Jo is professional, efficient and one of the nicest people I know!  Use The Inventory Lady to help you know just what you own!

Now…how about a new home for all of those things to live?

Home Sellers, now is the time to put your home on the market!  Prices are edging higher, inventory is down and days on market decreasing, check out my website to see what’s happening on your side of town, sign up and let’s talk about the value of your home!

Ready to buy your first home?  Let’s pre-qualify you for your mortgage and talk about what your needs are in a new home.  Why should you pre-qualify?  Check out this earlier blog post, then click this link to complete a preliminary application to see exactly where you stand then let’s go shopping!  Rates are still historically low and prices are edging up….let’s do this!

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Vicki Reed

Wish # 12

Wish twelve…my final wish!  So for my twelfth wish…I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and my wish is that all your wishes for positive change come true.

This exercise has been eye-opening for me, I hadn’t really thought about my wishes other than how my wishes affect my life, thank you all for taking this journey with me, I hope it opened your hearts as well.  Continue to pray for those affected by the tragedies of 2012 and pray for a brighter 2013.

Merry Christmas

Christmas-Decorations-Gift-Thread-Needles-New-Year  Vicki Reed

Wish # 5

My fifth wish is that society curb their consumerism…do we really need a bigger TV to be happy?  Does constantly accumulating more “things” make you happy?  I’m the first to admit…I love shopping!  I love nice clothes, purses, coats…and oh the shoes!  But do I need them to be happy?  Probably not, but the right shoes with the right outfit makes me happy and these red ones, they just make me feel great…Red Shoes

I see people every day, working hard and spending more for things you wonder if they really need or more likely, do their children.  Growing up, we had everything we needed, sure there was plenty of stuff we wanted, but I couldn’t tell you now what any of those things were.  My favorite things are the experiences we had as a family.  My Pappa was a school bus driver and a farmer (goes hand in hand more often than you would think).  His route took him past our house for a drop, then he would come back by…we would yell to Mom where we were headed, he’d pick us up at the end of the drive-way and take us home with him.  Mamma would add more plates to the table and after Dad got home and finished feeding (we too lived on a farm), he and Mom would come to retrieve us.  There was always ice cream (sometimes homemade that we had to crank!) or watermelon and cantaloupe, sitting on the front porch, laughing, talking enjoying the breeze and each other before jumping into the back of the pick-up and heading home.

With Christmas just around the corner, it is a great time to take stock, look around at what you have, decide what you really need before making that Christmas wish list, think about what you have, what you don’t use any more and donate usable items to your favorite charities…Goodwill, Salvation Army, Red Cross…the list is extensive.

My friend (and Co-Blogger) Mary O has a great solution – she has 3 sons, all married, 2 with kids, (1 with dogs) – instead of shopping for things…she takes each family to dinner and an event.  Plays, the Circus, Children’s Museum…she is making memories that her Grandchildren will remember for a lifetime…that’s what life is about, not the “things” you accumulate…

What could you live without?  What are your wishes for positive change?  Please share!

Vicki Reed