Here’s to A Lovely LOVE DAY at Home…

c9395154857303d65d6d8d79ebfa43a7Well, Valentine’s Day is here again and restaurants are so booked in South Florida this year, Waffle House has jumped on board to add an option for Love Day Dining…

If you’re like me, the idea of getting dressed up and spending a special date night with your loved one sounds amazing ~ the crowds and wait for a table…   Not so much!

So this year, I am going to skip the dialing for reservations step and get started on thinking of ways to make Valentine’s Day even more special – Right at HOME!

It’s going to be a beautiful day here in Parkland, with morning lows expected to be in the high 40’s, but by afternoon it should be crisp, clear and in the mid to upper 60’s.  So, HMMMMM…

What about a little al fresco dining?  How about setting up a romantic table for two on the 532c3ef6e444eb0633c6bbce61ac5f18patio?  It doesn’t have to be super fancy, although it can be if you like…  But I am thinking of creating a little Italian Cafe feel with a simple red table cloth and table decor to match…

An inexpensive patio table on your patio or balcony will do the trick.  Add a few candles, hurricane lamps or torches to add a romantic glow.  Flowers, a bowl of grapes…  You get the picture!

I am working on a simple yet delicious menu that we can make together, then we can watch a great movie, perhaps.  I will put my personal menu plan below for ideas.

The point is, wherever your living space is, it should be your haven and a place where you can greatly enjoy celebrating the different seasons of life.

We are all about Home being where your Heart is and so we will always help you find ways to make your home your own dream space.  And if you just need more space, or less, or need a ‘change of space’ for whatever reason – call us, of course!  We can help!

Nicola “Nicki” Riettie | Florida Luxury Real Estate Group | 954.708.6841 | nicola@flluxreg.com

Valentine’s Day Dinner Menu at Home

Screenshot 2015-02-12 13.10.23

P.S.  If you would like any of these recipes, just leave me a comment below…

FotorCreated

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Do I Need A Public Adjuster?

pubadjusterbannerAn oft-misunderstood role in the home industry is that of the Public Adjuster.  I recently sat down with one of the top Public Adjusters in the State, Floyd Ostrowsky of Reliant Adjusters Group, to get a better idea of what their profession does and how a homeowner might benefit from working with one.

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Nicola Riettie of Florida Luxury Real Estate Group and Floyd Ostrowsky of Reliant Adjusters Group discuss the role of a Public Adjuster.

1. What is a public adjuster? The simplest answer would be an advocate for the people! A trained and state licensed professional hired by a homeowner and or business owner to represent them in the event of property damage. 

2. Why would a homeowner need a public adjuster? When a homeowner has an insurance claim they are best served having someone who truly knows what they’re entitled to for repairing their home and other expenses. The Insurance companies have their people defending their interests, so it only makes sense that a homeowner does as well. A wise man once told me “You know what you know and you don’t know what you don’t know!” That said, having someone who knows how to manage the claim makes a substantial difference in the homeowner’s financial recovery.   

3. How is a public adjuster different from a staff or independent adjuster? Great question! Both staff adjusters and independent adjusters work for the Insurance company whereas a public adjuster is hired by the insured to represent their interests.

4. When would a homeowner need a public adjuster? It is always best to consult with a public adjuster whenever a homeowner has suffered a property loss. We can review the policy, uncover what is covered and suggest a next best step. 

5. In what circumstances? Public adjusters work specifically on property damage claims so we can assist with all claims arising, from the most common being water damage up to and including a full scale natural disaster such as a hurricane and everything in between, be it flood, mold, lightning strike, fire, smoke, structural, sinkhole, theft and vandalism. Basically if it causes damage to your home it is in the homeowner’s best interest to have a Public Adjuster give it a look.

6. How does a public adjuster get compensated for their services? Another great question, public adjusters work on a contingency basis. Basically we only get paid once the homeowner or business owner receives payment from their insurance company. If they do not receive payment, neither do we – so there is no risk.     

7. When is the right/best time after a disaster for them to contact a public adjuster?  Of course, first things first – take care of your family and mitigate your loss.  Then, in my opinion, it is always best to engage a public adjuster right away. Being engaged from the beginning helps keep the process running smoothly. A good public adjuster can basically start the claim for the homeowner and manage it through completion. That’s not to say it is too late to engage a public adjuster once you’ve started a claim or even if a claim has been denied. Lastly a public adjuster can even reopen a claim up for to five years, if there is relevant reason to do so.

8. How do you find/select the right public adjuster? First, always make sure they are licensed and bonded.  After that, there is nothing better than a referral.  If you know someone who was satisfied with how their claim was managed that would be a good indication or ask for references. At Reliant we are always happy to supply references.  It serves two purposes – it gives new clients confidence and maintains top of mind awareness of those we have worked for in the past. The greater majority of our business is word of mouth – when you are doing the right thing word gets around quickly. 

9. What sets Reliant Public Adjusters apart from its competitors? At Reliant, we pride ourselves on customer service and great communication. Keeping homeowners and business owners in the loop on the status of their claims is a priority. Added to that, we are a team of experienced professionals, each with our own unique backgrounds, myself having 30+ years of negotiation in business experience and my associates, one with a wealth of construction experience and the other formally an independent adjuster working for the insurance companies. As a team we have the knowledge and experience to deal with whatever possibly comes our way.    

Wow, this was amazing information!  We would like to thank Floyd for making the time to BC Frontsit with us to explain his profession so clearly.  You can contact Floyd Ostrowsky of Reliant Public Adjusters at 954.805.3602.

 

And It’s Back!!! The Annual Parkland Farmer’s Market Returns This Sunday…

farmersMarket2The Parkland Farmer’s Market returns tomorrow, Sunday, November 2nd, 2014 from 9am – 1pm.  This exciting annual event is greeted each year with great enthusiasm from Parkland residents and neighboring visitors.  Come out to find the best organic produce available, some of which is grown right here in our hometown.

Fresh fruit and vegetables, artisan treats and more will be available at this weekly event grounds1held during the ‘Winter Months’ at The Equestrian Center, located at 8350 Ranch Road, Parkland, FL 33076.  A special Craft Show will also be on this Sunday.

 

Hope to see you there!!!

What:    Parkland Farmer’s Market

When:   Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

Time:    9am – 1pm

Where:  The Equestrian Center

8350 Ranch Road

Parkland, FL 33067

Do Halloween Dangers Lurk at the Entryway of Your Parkland Home?

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Do Halloween Dangers Lurk at Your Entryway?

Happy-Halloween-Scary-2Is your front entryway ready for Halloween visitors? Keep everything fun and accident-free with these seven safety tips.

Everyone loves a good scare on Halloween — as long as it’s just a trick.

To help you avoid any real-life scares — such as falls, fires, and traffic accidents — around your property this All Hallows Eve, play it safe while you’re setting up your Halloween lights and decorations.

Here are seven simple precautions recommended by John Pettibone, curator of Hammond Castle, a Gloucester, Mass., mansion that draws thousands to its renowned 20-room haunted house every Halloween season.

1. Light the Scene

Providing plenty of illumination ensures that your visitors can see where they’re walking, helping to avoid missteps and falls. Pettibone suggests using the highest wattage bulbs your outdoor lighting fixtures can safely take (check the label on the socket), and adding landscape lights every few feet along your front walk.

“We use the solar-powered kind because there’s no wiring needed,” he says. “Just push them into the ground, let them soak up the sun during the day, and they’ll light up the walk after dark.”

2. Secure the Footing

Clear your walk, steps, and stoop of any obstructions that could trip youngsters focused more on tricks and treats than watching where they’re going. That means moving potted mums and jack o’lanterns out of the way, and hammering down any nail heads protruding out of your steps.

If you have a concrete stoop, which can get slippery when wet, apply friction tape ($16 for a 60-foot roll of 1-inch-wide tape) to ensure stable footing, says Pettibone. He also stocks up on chemical ice melt ($20 for a 50-lb. bag) just in case of an early freeze.

3. Tighten the Railings

If your porch railings are wobbly or broken, family members and friends may know not to lean too heavily on them, but Halloween visitors won’t. So hire a contractor or handyman to fix the problem. It’ll make your home safer for guests all year round. Because more strangers come to your front door this night than the rest of the year combined, now is the time to take care of it.

4. Eliminate Fire Hazards

Don’t put real candles into your carved pumpkins or paper lanterns. “That’s a fire waiting to happen,” says Pettibone. Instead, pick up a bulk pack of LED-bulb faux candles, which emit a yellowish, flickering, battery-powered light that looks amazingly similar to the real thing — without the danger.

5. Secure your Property

To prevent burglaries and Halloween pranks — especially on mischief night the previous evening — make sure to keep all windows and doors (other than your main door) locked shut.

You might have an electrician add motion-sensor lights around your property, so anyone who walks down your driveway or around into the backyard will be discouraged from intruding any farther.

6. Set the Scene

In addition to spooky items like cotton cobwebs and half-buried skeletons, consider a few safety-related scene-setters. Pettibone suggests propping open the screen or storm door so it doesn’t get in the way when there’s a big group of kids congregated on your stoop. “We use yellow caution tape to tie open the door,” he says. “You can order it online and it works well with the Halloween theme.” A 1,000-ft. roll of 3-inch-wide caution tape is about $8.

You’ll also want a working doorbell, so if yours is broken, either hire an electrician or handyman to fix it — or install a wireless doorbell in its place.

7. Enhance Street Safety

Four times as many child pedestrians get killed on Halloween night than a normal night. So limit the danger as much as you can by clearing parked cars off the curb to allow better visibility and placing a reflective “watch for children sign” at the edge of the road. For for high-traffic roads in Halloween-intensive neighborhoods, consider posting an adult in the street with a hand-held traffic control light to help maintain safety.

Happy-Halloween-2014-2

From all of us at Florida Luxury Real Estate Group ~

Have a Happy and Safe Halloween!

 

Article Written By: Oliver Marks - Houselogic.com
 Read more: http://members.houselogic.com/articles/halloween-safety-rules/preview/?cid=eo_em_mkt_rcrnewsletter#ixzz3HSDNVpQL
 Follow us: @HouseLogic on Twitter | HouseLogic on Facebook

Don’t Miss These Events, Parklanders…

moviesinthepark
Grab your lawn chairs, blankets and appetites … The City of Parkland, North Broward Preparatory School, North West Medical Center, Paragon Theaters and Allstate Insurance – Marllan Valerio, MBA, MA – Exclusive Agent present Monsters University on the big screen! See you at Pine Trails Park Friday at 7pm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Let’s get together and raise money for the S.O.S Children’s Village…
parkland food drive
Ongoing Food Drive till November 14th

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hope to see you out and about in our Town…

Are You Ready For The 4th of July?

4th-of-july-plank-flag-manditremayneOne of our nation’s most patriotic events will be here this Friday – are you ready for the 4th of July?  What will you be doing this year?  Barbecue at home, hanging out at family or friend’s or celebrating it with your community?

Whatever you are doing, here are some great ideas that you can add to your celebrating to bring your full patriotic spirit to your home.

Here in South Florida, the 4th of July is one of our favorite summer days.  It usually is a beautiful sunshin-ey day, great for spending outdoors.  Enjoy the pool or beach or local park and cool off from the heat with this Watermelon Blueberry Salsa.

Watermelon Blueberry Salsawatermelon-blueberry-salsa2

Yield: 2 1/2 cups

Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 4 small Roma tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped (discard seeds for a milder salsa)
  • 1 cup diced watermelon
  • 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice (from 1 lime)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions:

  • Combine tomatoes, onion, and jalapeno in the bowl of a food processor; pulse briefly or until finely chopped (do not fully liquefy). If you don’t have a food processor, you can finely chop the ingredients by hand.
  • Transfer tomato mixture to a medium bowl; stir in watermelon, blueberries, cilantro, lime juice, and salt.
  • Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to develop.

Read more at http://www.loveandoliveoil.com/2012/08/watermelon-blueberry-salsa.html

Serve up these great Red, White and Blueberry Cheesecake Cupcakes for Dessertred-white-and-blueberry-cheesecake-yogurt-cupcakes

Skinnytaste.com

Servings: 12 • Serving Size: 1 cupcake • Old Points: 2 pts • Points+: 3 pts Calories: 98 • Fat: 4.3 g • Protein: 3.6 g • Carb: 10.5 g • Fiber: 0.3 g • Sugar: 7.6 g Sodium: 29.5 mg

Ingredients:

  • 12 reduced fat vanilla wafers
  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 6 oz fat-free vanilla Greek yogurt (I used Chobani)
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 8 oz strawberries, hulled and sliced thin
  • 8 oz blueberries

Directions:

  • Heat oven to 350°.
  • Line cupcake tin with liners. Place a vanilla wafer at the bottom of each liner.
  • Gently beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth using an electric mixer. Gradually beat in fat free yogurt, egg whites, and flour. Do not over beat. Pour into cupcake liners filling half way.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool to room temperature then chill at least 1 hour in the refrigerator.

healthy-4th-of-july-strawberry-blueberry-poke-cake-dashingdishWe LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this recipe for a Strawberry Blueberry Poke Cake, served with sparklers and all!

Check out the recipe here

 

4th-of-july-mantel-landeeseelandeedoIf you are crafty, you can try these great ideas for decorating for the holiday to add to the patriotic spirit!

 

Check out these great mantel ideas from Landeelu

 

 

IMG_3063-1Try these super cute Kids’ Flag Shirts from Make It And Love It.

 

 

This year, we will be celebrating the 4th of July with our community at the beautiful Plaza Heron-Bay-2del Lago Clubhouse in Heron Bay in Parkland!  It is so wonderful to live in a community that puts on such fun, well-organized events for our neighbors and ourselves to enjoy and to celebrate our country’s Independence together!   Our own poolside Cabana Grille has a great, special menu planned and it is going to be one packed, fun-filled day for Heron Bay residents!!!  We can’t wait!!!

Whatever you do, enjoy your 4th of July! Don’t forget all who have fought for our freedom and independence so that we can live in and as the greatest nation on earth!!!

Happy Independence Day to All of You!!!

 

 

Summertime Fun at Zoo Miami

Summertime is now upon us and many are looking for new, fun things to do with their families.   We are very excited about a visit to Zoo Miami this summer because it is the home of a series of great animal exhibits and activities that are sure to be very exciting for the whole family!

Zoo Miami has just introduced one of their newest additions  – a female black rhinoceros named “Aria”! She is the 13th successful birth at Zoo Miami for this very highly endangered species. The African Black Rhino is also one of the species you can adopt at Zoo Miami!rhino2 rhino

In addition, lioness “Kashifa’s”  five cubs are now on exhibit: “Saba,” “Bantu,” “Asani,” “Amirah,” and the adopted male, “Kwasi,” son of Kashifa’s late sister, “Asha”.

lion pride 2lionpride1

Check out the Creatures of Habitat Exhibit – a gazillion-piece animal adventure” all made

legozoomiamiof LEGO® bricks.  Zoo Miami will be presenting this most exciting, educational, and fun exhibit until June 22, 2014, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily, at Dr. Wilde’s World (DWW), so hurry there to catch it!  The exhibit will be displayed both in DWW’s air-conditioned museum space as well as on its outdoor plaza.  The Creatures of Habitat, a popular exhibit made up of LEGO® bricks, comes to Zoo Miami from the Philadelphia Zoo, where it captured a wide audience.  The purpose of this exhibit is multifaceted:  to educate visitors on the potential extinction of various animal species and habitats; to inspire them to protect our planet; to teach them how our behaviors and actions contribute to the destruction of these animals and their habitats; and how we can change our lives to ensure and promote our planet, animal species, and habitat conservation.

giraffesDid you know that this Saturday, June 21st, is World Giraffe Day?  Be sure to take the kids out to Feed the Giraffes at the SAMBURU GIRAFFE FEEDING STATION.   Have you ever been face to face with a giraffe? Since these famously tall creatures stand at about 16-20 feet tall, most people would only be able to compare to one of its legs in height. At Zoo Miami, you can get up close and personal with Titan, Kita, Fezzick, and the rest of your favorite giraffes at the Samburu Giraffe Feeding Station. At this interactive exhibit, guests can walk up a custom built ramp that leads to an elevated platform overlooking the African Plains exhibit. Every day from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., you can purchase delicious green veggies like lettuce or collard greens to feed to these giant creatures for only $3! You will get to check out their spots up close and look into their eyes as they come right up to you and extend their 14-inch long tongues to gently scoop the treats right out of your hand.

There is no shortage of great, fun things to do with the family this Summer and Zoo Miami is one of the best ways to do just that.  For more information on what’s happening at Zoo Miami, visit their website.

 

 

Parkland’s Farmers’ Market Is Back

Have you heard the news? Parkland’s Farmers’ Market is back this weekend!!! Sunday, November 6, 2011 is OPENING DAY! Stop by the Equestrian Center at 8350 Ranch Road Parkland, FL 33067 between 9:00am till 1:00pm

Opening Day Activities will include a free bounce house, live music, pony rides for the kids, special give-a-ways, cooking demos and much more.

Over 80 vendors will be selling everything from fresh produce, creative cupcakes, fresh pasta, herbs, teas, gourmet breads, Amish jams and jellies, fresh cheese, gourmet oils and dips, vegan and gluten free food, and much more!

Get the whole family together and come out for some fun and shopping for natural, wholesome good produce, preserves and more – see you there!

Don’t Miss The Taste of Parkland Today!!!

Hooray!!! Its another SoFlo Weekend…

The weekend is upon us and its time to make our plans, right?  There are lots of great events to go to or partake in this weekend.  Here are some of our top picks:

Thursday Night 9/15/2011

The Whale Raw Bar in our hometown, Parkland, FL is celebrating their Grand Re-Opening – Break your week up with a PARTY!! Head on over to The Whale Raw Bar tonight, Sept. 15 when they’ll have an OPEN BAR from 5-6pm! (Plus FREE food samples and live entertainment). Bring the whole family! See the restaurant’s fabulous changes and taste their new menu items!  Click here for more information.

Art Walk in Las Olas is a great way to celebrate the incredible weather we’re having tonight.  Sun-Sentinel’s Go Guide puts it perfectly:  “The free monthly third-Thursday community event seems to be gaining traction with downtown Fort Lauderdale workers and residents. And what’s not to like about a stroll up and down one of South Florida’s most striking streets, populated from 6 to 10 p.m. with fellow seekers of art, culture, serendipity and a drink?”

Art-Walk-Las-Olas-video.jpgHere are a few things to look out for at Art Walk Las Olas tonight:

$5 mojitos in a rainbow of flavors: strawberry, raspberry, pineapple, blackberry and watermelon. Get yours at the newest glamour spot on the boulevard, M Bar (1301 Las Olas).

CineART al Fresco (at right) projects digital art, video and performance pieces on the two-story screen bordering the Riverside Hotel lawn (620 E. Las Olas) from 8 to 10 p.m. Seating is free.

Gospel music from two choirs, Remnant of Praise and Visionary Men of Valor, 7-9 p.m. on the lawn of First Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale (1250 E. Las Olas).

Pinwheels! A field of more than 200 artfully rendered “mini wind turbines,” as ArtWalkers call them, will bring a sense of whimsy to the lawn at 1250 E. Las Olas. Giveaways to Las Olas area residents (with ID).

More info: artwalklasolas.com.

Friday  9/16/2011

Check out the the cerebral ’60s-set thriller “Brighton Rock,” based on the Graham Greene novel, a gripping love-gone-wrong story sprinkled with menace, mod period fashion (and scooters) and, especially, a dazzling Helen Mirren. Something for everyone. It screens at 6 p.m. Friday and 8 p.m. Saturday-Sunday at Cinema Paradiso in downtown Fort Lauderdale. Info: fliff.com, 954-525-3456.

Saturday 9/17/2011

The Island Flair on The Avenue in Delray Beach is our top pick for Saturday.  Enjoy the weather, Caribbean music and food on the hip, main drag of Atlantic Ave. in Delray Beach (Atlantic Avenue at Southwest Fifth Street), between 12 noon to 7pm.

Sunday 9/18/2011

Of course, for many, the NFL is the pick of the day!  There are some great games on this weekend, so that’s no surprise.  But if you’re looking for a great way to enjoy the outdoors this Sunday, why don’t you check out The Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens in Delray Beach?  Visit the Morikami Museum and see the exquisite array of items from Japan and Asia.  Stroll through the beautifully manicured Japanese Gardens.  There is something for everyone to enjoy at Morikami!  Click here for more details.

Don’t forget that if you visit Parkland, FL’s Bluefin Sushi Restaurant, check in on Facebook and get an easy 15% discount on your bill  (Offer valid Mondays through Thursdays only.)  Want more ideas for things to do this weekend?  Click here. Whatever you choose to do in SoFlo this beautiful Fall weekend, keep it safe and have great fun!