October is an awesome month in Arizona

The weather is cooler and the real estate market has shifted here in many areas to a buyers market. It is a great time to buy with the low interest rates and there is good inventory of homes to see right now also.

This time of year everything changes in Arizona.  The weather starts it with the temps going down at night in the 60’s so you can wake up feeling invigorated to go out and run or walk.   Their are so many great
sunrises and sunsets that remind you of why you live here.    It is time to start planting flowers again and many people reseed the grass for winter lawns so everything it green.   The golf courses are overseeding
so that when November 1st comes around, you can play again but at a much higher rate than the summer!

Need more rain this winter

We have had little to no rain so far this winter. It is great when the sun is shining in the Valley of the Sun. As a matter of fact it is expected! We also have to deal with the fact that this is the desert southwest and we have had droughts for most of the past decade. We NEED the rain and snow up north badly.

The storms we have had lately have been going north of the Valley or fizzle out before they hit the state. I loved March 1993 when he had so much rain before it that the desert was actually GREEN. The wildflowers were everywhere and the colors added so much depth to our desert. It was a rare time but a time when you wanted to hike and take in all the flowers and flora that were bursting out in rainbows of color everywhere in the state. I know that will not happen this March.

Warm Monday in January in the Arizona Desert

It seems like the typical January in the southest valley of Phoenix where the sun is shining, the air is clear and the temps are ideal for a round of golf or a nice hike in South Mountain Park. Who would want to be anywhere but the Valley of the Sun at this time of year?

There is so much to tease you when you are working this time of year with the weather calling you outside everyday. I could be roller skating, running, walking, shopping in one of the many outdoor malls (like Keirland Commons or San Tan Mall). Instead I am plugging away working in my business. Now that we have such incredible technology like the Ipad, Iphone, and WiFi everywhere there is no excuse not to be working, especailly when you are in the real estate business. Showing homes on a day like today to someone from North Dakota, Minnesota, or Canada would certainly result in them wanting to buy now. It it just too incredibly beautiful here not to buy. I love January because it reminds you that if you are blessed enough to live in Arizona then you have already won the lottery. Many people in the snow covered areas of the US plan all year to come here for just a week or two. I get to enjoy it year round. I know what you are now thinking, like what about the summers? Well, I have that one handled also, since I have a pool and I get in it at least 2-3 times a day and swim, play, work out so the summers have some challenges however I make lemonage out of those lemons.

Don’t waste your time thinking about it, plan your trip and come to the greater Phoenix area now. The opportunities are there to play, relax, and even check out our great real estate market.

March in the Arizona Desert

This is the start of my favorite month of the whole year in Arizona. The best part is the orange blossoms on the tree that add a sweet aroma to everywhere you go. Everyone is in a great mood since the weather is perfect, there is so much to do with Spring Training going on daily all over the metro Phoenix area.

It motivates me to get out and go hiking at South Mountain Regional Park, get a round of golf in at one of the 100’s of gorgeous golf courses we have, and then dine outside at a wonderful place like House of Tricks in Tempe.

Business is brisk since so many people are visiting Arizona in March and decide to go looking at the homes available at prices they have not seen in years. It is an oustanding time to buy a home in Arizona. I do realize that I am lucky to live in a beautiful state that has so many great communities and people.

Hanging with lots of WordPress fans at WordCamp Phx

I am sitting in a great room near downtown Phoenix learning more about WordPress multisites and enjoying listening to Boone sharing his passion for WordPress with all the fans in the room.

I am still learning a lot about WP and blogging to enhance my experience in blogging.  I am getting tons of ideas just sitting here, like new domain names to use, new blogs to start, etc…  That is one thing I can say about going to classes like this, they seem to open up my mind to creativity since I am getting out of my comfort zone.

Hula Hoops for Change

I got out of my comfort zone last week when I enrolled in a Hoola Hoop exercise class I saw advertised.  It was at a dance studio in Tempe, AZ that I found on the www.meetup.com weekly emails I receive from them.  They advertised the class as something fun to do for a work out.  I was intrigued and moved forward with a registration.

I showed up early and went into the studio room where the class was getting ready to begin.  There were 4 other participants who looked relaxed and ready for the hour class.  We all picked out the hoola hoop that appealed to us.  The hoola hoops come in heavier weights that are hard to distinguish from just looking at them but I quickly learned not to be deceived by them.  I had to change after starting out to a lighter one. 

I thought that it would be easy just throwing the hoop around my waist and just doing it like I did when I was a kid.  I was quickly reminded that I was not a kid anymore and that my size was not the same either so the motions you have to do continually be doing to keep it up around your waist were quite different than I could remember.  Gee it has only been 40 years since I contemplated the hoola hoop.  Now I was doing battle with this crazy hoola hoop.  It kept wanting to fall down after every effort I was making to keep it up.  I was starting to sweat and think to myself  when is the fun part going to start in this class?  After about what seemed like 100 tries I was starting to get what I needed to be doing to keep this hoop circling my body regularly.  I would have it drop down again every now and then but I was starting to get the motion I needed to do to get it going and staying around my waist.  I  kept thinking that this was a lot more challenging than I ever anticipated. 

It turned out to be a good work out for me and I felt good about doing something new and different.  I also realized how valuable it is to seek out challenges like this that can have you seek out ways to get you thinking, acting, and being open to new things.  It was very refreshing to do something so out of the ordinary for me that day.  I started to look at my real estate business and in ways that I could get out of my comfort zone with what I have been doing for years.  I do know that it is changing quickly and I need to throw the mental hoola hoop for my mind so that I can be prepared for the challenges facing the industry.

Shopping with Social Media

I just heard on the financial news that one of my favorite stores, Chico’s has doubled
their sales recently.  That is amazing considering all the bad economic news so
you know they are doing something right in the marketplace.

I then started to think about how much Chico’s is communicating with me via”
Facebook.  Of course I am a Fan of them so I get daily updates.  I find out about
their sales every week.  I have been able to buy some clothes I like on sale.  I do
not shop that much anymore due to time and budgeting constraints. 

One of the best things they have done is to start to put videos of the Fall clothing line
with great music (like the music they play in their stores).  I watch most of them
since it only takes a minute and I am curious as to what they will be showing.

I started to think about my real estate business on Facebook.  We have  a fan page
and now we are spending a lot more time and energy making it a great experience.  It
The challenge is to make it so cool that our clients and potential clients will enjoy
it as much as I have with Chico’s.  That is one reason I love and embrace social
media.  It is fun and it reaches more people!  Get on board, the train is moving fast!

Green is the new Pink

With a name like Barbie you can imagine how much pink I have around me. It has always been one of my favorite colors. I know I have overdone it at times so now I have migrated towards an orange sherbert color for the most part. There is one other color that really has my attention these days and it is GREEN.

Green represents so many great things in our universe. It is more commonly referred to helping out the environment more than anything now – going green. I know that everyday I go through something green related. If you drink water out of a plastic bottle then you are not being very green.  It would be better to buy a few Sigg bottles and refill them.  I have one that says, “Green is the new pink” that inspired me writing this blog.

To be more serious about green and going green there are posts, blogs, articles on the web that embrace all the ways to go green and reduce, reuse, and recycle so that you reduce your carbon footprint on this earth.  You can google green and it will apply to just about any aspect of your life.  I have even gone to cloth napkins at home to remind me of the little things I can do daily to make a difference.  It can be that simple.

Video Awesomeness

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Do you really know you?

I read a great article in the Oprah 2010 magazine titled, “New Year, New Virtual You” written by Farah Miller. I was amazed to find information about social media in Oprah already. It just goes to show you that social media has really taken the country by storm!

The one webiste she shared that I found fascinating (and I had no knowledge of before) was www.peekyou.com I went to the site and checked myself out. It was interesting to see what all came up. I saw others who share my same name and then all the references to me including pictures I have on sites. It is truly eye opening to see yourself there and realize that anyone interested in finding out more about you will be going there and seeing where you are on the web and social media sites.

It is well worth your time to find yourself on that site.

Barbie Burke
Respect Realty