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Archive for August, 2008

Join The Maryland Farm Bureau and Save on Your Home Owners Insurance.


Maryland Farm Bureau, Save Money and Help Your State . . . (edit/delete)

I belong to the Maryland Farm Bureau and really feel it is a worthwhile cause. It is a non profit organization that is privately run to support our Maryland Farmers. 

 It costs $60.00 a year and I save on my Home owner’s Insurance on my home.  I think we save about $110 a year.  Maybe that is not a huge amount, but you also get benefits for belong to the Farm Bureau.

Here are the Farm Bureau’s top ten reasons you should join;

1.  Maryland Farm Bureau is the organized

voice of Maryland agriculture

2. We advocate for an abundant, affordable,

and safe food supply

3.  You save hundreds of dollars by using the

many member-only benefits

4.  We support a healthy, viable agricultural

industry which means more open, green


5.  We educate the general public on the

importance of Maryland agriculture

6.  Farm Bureau’s successful grassroots

structure allows for member participation

7.  Maryland Farm Bureau supports the next

generation by offering college scholarships

8.  Farm Bureau promotes the safe and

humane treatment of animals

9.  You join locally at the county level, but also

benefit from the state and national Farm

Bureau organizations

10. Farm Bureau offers participation opportunities

for all ages

We have been members for years and enjoy the discounts we receive from our membership and helping our community at the same time.  Go to their website and sign up today!  Maryland Farm Bureau

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

The Worst Traffic Day of the Year . . .

traffic-jam.jpgThe DC area, with it’s suburbs, is ranked as one of the top 5 worst traffic areas in the country.  Right up there with Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Atlanta and DC.  Actually, without looking up the exact statistics, I think these cities are the top 5 worst traffic cities in the country?  I know, I know you folks down in Miami have some complaining to do too, so go ahead.

The traffic is always something we contend with in our area.  Heck, I time showings and appointments around it just so I don’t have to run late or suffer the pain of sitting on the Beltway.  You folks that do it day in and day out, I don’t know how you do it?  Bless your hearts, I think it must get to you all sometimes.

The good news is once school is out and Summer is here the traffic seems to lighten up in our area. Folks are on vacation and out of the area.  August can be like a ghost town.  I marvel at how empty the parking lot at my office building is during the Summer months.

But then it happens.  Labor Day weekend comes and goes and it is back to the real world for all of us.  Yep, I think the Tuesday after Labor Day is the WORST traffic day of the year.  Everyone is back to work and school.  School buses that you did not have to contend with for the last 3 months are back on the road getting the kids to school.  Frantic parents dropping kids off to school before they have to get to work.  For some reason it seems no one ever schedules enough time.  Racing here and there and then the mother of all traffic jams happens.

I am afraid that day.  I stay home until after 9:30 am on that Tuesday and let you folks do your thing.  I sit and watch the traffic updates on Channel 4 every ten minutes to wait for the all clear.  When you all get to where are going and it is safe to exit the building, then I head out.

Do yourself a favor, get an early start because it is going to be a long day.  Listen to WTOP on your car radio.  They will give you a “traffic and weather update every ten minutes on the 8’s”.  That could help you take an alternative route in case there is an accident or extra tie up.

Buckle up and be safe!

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

Suburban Maryland Home Show 2008, Germantown MD

paint-swatches.jpgIf you are anything like me and my husband, home improvement is a never ending process.  Don’t get me wrong, it is a labor of love but it is definitely labor.  One of the previous owners had done several improvements ten years ago, but we have since improved upon their improvements. There are so many choices, it can be daunting.  Where do you start? What is your budget?  That is why the Home Show is a great place to start.  Everyone you want to talk to all in one place! 

We look at it as eating an elephant, one bite at a time and soon you will make progress.  We divided the house into sections as far as cost, if it was something we could do ourselves, and the amount of inconvenience.  The fun part is you get to make your home your very own.

A helpful way to determine these factors would be a visit to the Suburban Maryland Fall Home Show.  The show will be held at the Discovery Soccer Complex in Germantown, Maryland  September 12,13, & 14.  There is an admission is $9.00, kids under 16 are free.

At the show you will find all kinds of vendors that can give you advice on projects you might be contemplating.  Anything from gutters to granite will be at the show.  There will be vendors with goods to sell that you can purchase at the show.

Make a day of it, there will be a concession stand when you need to take a break from shopping.

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

“Jazz it Up” at the Rockville Town Square August 30, 2008


saxaphone.jpg“Jazz It Up” on the Rockville Town Square

Have you been to the new Rockville Town Square It is fabulous.  There are all kinds of new shops and restaurants.  They even have a Gordon Beirsch brewery/restaurant.  It is so much fun. 

Come out Satruday, August 30th from 10:00 am to 5:00pm for the Rockville Town Square Jazz Festival.

There will be live Jazz all day long, food tastings and the shops at the Rockville Town Square will have store specials.

The tastings will be featuring the Rockville Town Square restaurants including;

Austin Grill, Bobby’s Crab Cakes, Greystone Grill, La Tasca Tapas Bar, Oro Pomodoro, Taste of Saigon and many more.  The tastings are $5.00 each, plus tax and they only take cash. So make sure you stop off at the ATM before you come.

The Band Schedule is as follows;

10:15 am The Meritxell Project

11:30 am Swing Speak

1:00 pm  James King

2:30 pm  Donato with Friends

4:00 pm  Daryl Davis

Parking is free after 7:00 pm and on the Weekends. 

For more information you can call 703-690-2329 or rockvilletownsquare.com

Hope you have a great time.

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

Gaithersburg Labor Day Parade 2008


parade.jpgGaithersburg Labor Day Parade September 1st 2008 (edit/delete)

Gaithersburg will be say good bye to summer with a big send off.  On September 1st the 70th annual Gaithersburg Labor Day parade will be held at the intersection of Russell and Diamond Avenues in Olde Town Gaithersburg. 

There will be Fire engines, marching bands, giant balloons and clowns celebrating the weekend.  The parade will start at 1:00 and last until about 2:00.  Bring your the family and your chairs and enjoy the afternoon.  There will be free parking at the city parking garage and shuttle buses from Gaithersburg Middle School.

If your group is  interested in participating in the parade you may contact Janet Limmer at 301-258-6350 or you can go to Gaithersburgmd.gov and fill out the pdf form online.

Come on out with the family and enjoy the fun!!

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

What’s Old is New Again . . .

clothesline.jpgWhen I was a kid I can remember my Mom hanging the laundry out to dry on a nice sunny afternoon.  She always said the sun made things smell better.  I just thought that was what everyone did.  Then, the next thing I knew we had an electric dryer delivered to our house and boy we thought we were we something.

After the dryer came, the clothes were never hung out to dry on the clothes line.  Sure, we had the drying rack thingamajig for delicate clothes, but never did our unmentionables go back outside.  Then it seemed that you weren’t supposed to do that . . .  Yards were for patios, pools and fancy landscaping. 

Nowadays not only are you not supposed to hang your wears out for all of the neighbors to see, the Home owners associations in our area even state that this is a violation of the covenants.  However, yesterday when I was showing houses I could see down in the next door neighbor’s yard a Clothesline.  It was full too, with a full load of laundry.  It was behind the fence so no one could see anything.  It had been so long since I had seen laundry hung out on a clothes line it really stood out to me.  It was kind of neat to be reminded of those old days being outside helping Mom.

Since being green is so en vogue this got me to think that maybe we should start hanging our unmentionables out for our neighbor to enjoy again to save energy.  When you think about it, the dryer is one the most expensive appliances we run in our households.  By considering this new chore we could not only save money, we could help save the planet.

Next we might consider hand washing our clothes again .  .  . Nah, we don’t want get too crazy with ourselves.

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

You Go Girl! Single Women Move Forward in Purchasing Real Estate

super-girl.jpgYou know the saying.  You go Girl.  It is kind of like the female version of that jump in the air high five thingy?  Whatever you guys call it?!!  It is something that we say to women when they show us their strengths and that they have overcome or accomplished something major in their lives. We all know that we are stronger than we realize, just sometimes we need a little nudge.  So this story will be about women and their strengths when it comes to home ownership. 

I work with many first time homebuyers.  I love them, they are eager to learn the process from start to finish and they are so proud at the sucess of their first home.  It is so cool when that happens.  Not to pick on the guys, but I think some women are not sure about this subject.

For single women though, I think some of you don’t think you can’t do it.  I think many women still think they need to wait for their Knight in Shinning Armour to show up and that is when these types of life decisions start to take place.  Not so I say.  As a former single female first time home buyer, I say go for it.  You can do it.

Did you know, as a single home buyer you make up about 18% of the home sales across the country?

Here’s how strong you are;

Statistics on women and home ownership

The single female segment of the home buyer population accounted for 18% of all home buyers in 2004. Single women purchased approximately one in five homes in 2003, while more than one in ten were purchased by single men.

More women (15.5 million) than men (11.8 million) lived alone. Among these, women were more likely than men to own their homes (56% vs. 47%).

About one-quarter of the nation’s nearly eight million single mothers spend more than half of their incomes on housing, compared with one-tenth of households headed by single fathers.

Over the time period of 1994-2002, the number of unmarried females owning homes climbed from 13.9 million to 17.5 million.

Sources: 2007 NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, (Chicago, IL: National Association of REALTORS®, 2006).

2000 census delivers insights on homeownership, (Community Banker, Mar. 2002).


Many of us are waiting to marry or cohabit later in life, but there is no need to put your life on hold in regard to making a home buying decision.  I remember about 5 years ago I had a buyer, a Single woman around 30 who said to me “I don’t know why I put this on hold?  I think I have been waiting to be rescued and now I have missed out on buying a home at a lower price waiting for prince charming.”  That just smacked me right across the head as an “Ah ha moment”.  What are we thinking?  We can do it.

Right now, my buyer pool has 3 single, never been married woman, on the hunt for a new home in the Gaithersburg/Germantown area.  I am so proud of them and their strength.  You should find yourself a REALTOR(R) and a lender that you know and trust to guide you through the transaction.  It is not as difficult as you may think.  It will be one of the magic moments in your life, owning your first home. 

You Go girl, you are stronger than you think!!

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: 2 Comments »

Learning about Alzheimer’s, Silver Alert and Safe Return

elderly-couple.jpgThis is a funny story with a serious message. . .

Awhile back I was on my way to an appointment and of course I was running about 10 minutes late. So I am driving down  Middlebrook Road the road pretty focused, minding my own business.

This is a fairly large road, 3 lanes in each direction 40 mph speed limit going through town. As I get start to  get on I-270 on-ramp, I notice this older gentleman standing at the corner of the road and the on-ramp. He was probably 80 – 85ish, dressed to a tee. Navy blue pants, button down shirt, blue Izod cardigan he was as dapper as could be. Bless his heart. Nothing out of the ordinary about that the fact that he was standing at the on ramp hitch hiking is what made me think something was not right.

So I dutifully call the Germantown police department, not 911, and just told the woman it was probably nothing but an elderly gentleman was hitch hiking I just wanted one of the police officers to stop and check on him, maybe he was lost or disoriented. She said she would call and thanked me because this is a problem.

If I would have not been late, I would have stopped myself but I was on a mission. I called my husband to tell him what happened. The ultimate smart alec, my husband Mike, says ” Why did you go and do that? The poor guy just busted out of the old folks home thinking he was free at last and you go and bust him.” I just shook me head.

I thought about that, maybe I should have minded my own business, but I think I did the right thing by making sure he did not have Alzheimer’s and is lost or something of that nature?  If you have ever had a loved one suffer from Dementia or Alzheimer’s you know the pain and frustration it can cause.  Just remember the love.

I started thinking about our older family members. They need to be revered and protected like any other member of our family. If they have Dementia or Alzheimer’s becoming lost or disoriented is a common occurrence. The Alzheimer’s Foundation says that 60% of Alzheimer’s suffers will “wander” and become lost or disoriented. That is huge. Think how frustrating it is when you walk into a room and forget what you went in there for, just imagine that being your daily life.

Several states have started Silver Alerts which are similar to Amber alerts but for elderly Americans.  Another program is the Safe Return registry.  This is where you can register family members just in case a family member wanders.

Some of the States I have found that have enacted these laws are Colorado, Texas, Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, California, and Florida. These are the states I have found so far. If your state, mine has not, has not enacted these laws please encourage your lawmakers to do so. 

We must protect and revere our older family members.  You never know, it could happen to you someday.

Spoken by Audrey Forshey | Discussion: No Comments »

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