PSO Presents Bugs, Flowers and Bees


Bugs, Flowers and Bees

 

At Ebby Halliday Realtors, we’re proud to be the two-year title sponsor of the Plano Symphony Orchestra’s EncoreYouth program, which includes the all-new, fun-filled Family Symphony Sundays program.

 

This Sunday, March 5, at 3 p.m., you and your family are invited to enjoy “Bugs, Flowers and Bees,” featuring marionettes from Le Theatre de Marionette as they dance and perform to “Flight of the Bumblebee,” “Spring” from “The Four Seasons,” “Flower Duet” from “Madame Butterfly” and more. Meet the musicians and enjoy pre-concert activities beginning at 2:15 p.m.

 

The event, for children ages 3-12 and their families, takes place at the Courtyard Theatre, 1509 Ave. H in Plano. Tickets are available at planosymphony.org.

 

“Bugs, Flowers and Bees” will also be performed on Sunday, May 21, at 3 p.m. in McKinney. For more information and tickets, click here.

Which Light Bulbs Are Right For You?


 

set of light bulbs

With so many types of light bulbs available, it can be overwhelming to select the right ones. Read this guide to determine what you need for your fixture, space, and budget.

Factors to Think About

*Lumens (brightness)
*Wattage (energy used)
*Appearance (warm vs. cool)
*Bulb lifespan
*Estimated yearly cost
*Contains mercury?
 
When shopping for light bulbs, take a look at the Lighting Facts label on the packaging in order to compare different bulbs. The label looks similar to a Nutrition Facts label:

FTCLightingFacts
Lumens
Lumens represent the amount of light emitted from a lightbulb. The more lumens, the brighter the light. When purchasing light bulbs, start by comparing how bright of a bulb you want before factoring in other characteristics, as lumens are the same across the board. The number of lumens needed to light a room depends on the size, color of the walls, and how much light you prefer.
 
Watts
Watts are the amount of energy a light bulb uses. The higher the watts, the higher the electric bill. (CFLs and LEDs have a lower wattage than incandescent.) When purchasing bulbs, follow instructions provided by the lighting fixture about the maximum wattage. A bulb with too high of a wattage can create a fire hazard due to the production of excess heat. It can also damage the light fixture.
 
Today, light bulb packaging shows the number of lumens. If you’re used to looking at wattage to figure out how much light you need in a room, check out this helpful chart below.
 
Energy Chart

Types of Light Bulbs

Incandescent
Incandescent bulbs are the traditional bulb type, but today, standard 60- and 40-watt bulbs are no longer produced or sold. This has been the case since 2007, when Congress passed the Energy Independence and Security Act, which requires incandescent light bulbs to be 25 percent more efficient.
 
Halogen Incandescent
Halogen bulbs are perhaps the closest alternative to incandescent bulbs, but with a longer lifespan. While more energy-efficient than incandescent, they are still not as efficient as CFL or LED bulbs. These inexpensive bulbs produce a crisp, bright light, and do not fade with age. They operate at high temperatures, which can cause burns if touched, but they do not contain any mercury. Halogen bulbs are commonly used as task lighting — think spotlight or flood light bulbs.
 
CFLs
Compact Fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) emit a similar light output in the same color range as incandescent bulbs, but consume significantly less energy. CFL bulbs can be used anywhere a typical incandescent bulb would go, including both indoors and outdoors. These bulbs may take a few minutes to reach their maximum output.
*CFL bulbs do contain a small amount of mercury, and care should be taken to prevent breakage, as well as to dispose properly.
 
Fluorescent
Fluorescent lights need a controlling ballast to operate, but new ballasts eliminate the buzz and flickering often associated with fluorescent lights. In addition, fluorescent lights are now available in a wider variety of colors and sizes. Fluorescent lights are energy-efficient, but like CFL bulbs, require a warm-up time and proper disposal. They also produce a small amount of ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which some people may be sensitive to.
 
LEDs
Light Emitting Diode bulbs (LEDs) are just as energy-efficient as CFLs, but with a longer lifespan. In general, LED bulbs are pricier than other options, but are becoming more affordable as they grow in popularity. LEDs are cool to the touch and do not contribute to indoor heat buildup. They come in a variety of whites and colors, and are also shock-resistant.
 
Smart LEDs
These “smart bulbs” have all the characteristics of traditional LED bulbs, but connect to your home Wi-Fi to be controlled by a smartphone or other smart home device. These bulbs will set you back a bit more than your average LED bulbs, but allow you to change the color, set an on/off timer, and more.

 

Fresh Listing Friday: High-Quality Hurst


FLF Logo

Happy Friday y’all! This week’s Fresh Listing Friday is a completely updated home in Hurst, situated northeast of Fort Worth. 935 Park Forest Drive offers an open floor plan and proximity to a park, highway, and a railway park-and-ride. Take a virtual tour below to see the beautiful details and accommodations throughout!

Need-to-know Details:

• Priced at $275,000
• 2,221 square feet: 4 bedrooms, 2 baths
• Kitchen with marble countertops, ample cabinetry, stainless-steel appliances, and glass backsplash
• Master suite with sitting area, jetted tub, and separate shower

Fresh Listing Friday
Front Exterior  Fresh Listing Friday
Front Entryway Fresh Listing Friday
Formal Dining AreaFresh Listing Friday
Fresh Listing Friday
Casual Living Area Fresh Listing FridayFresh Listing Friday Fresh Listing Friday
KitchenFresh Listing Friday
Casual Dining AreaFresh Listing FridayFresh Listing Friday Fresh Listing FridayMaster Suite Fresh Listing Friday
Rear ExteriorFresh Listing FridayFresh Listing Friday
Nearby Park

To view this listing, contact Becky Silvers at 817-654-8450 or beckysilvers@ebby.com.

5 Tips for Beginning Your Home Search


5 Tips for Beginning Your Home Search

 

The home-searching process can be a lot of fun. You look at homes and imagine yourself living there with all your furniture set up, having family and friends over, and relaxing on a Friday evening in the living room with your favorite show on the TV. With all this excitement, your mind may (understandably) be in the clouds, however, there are important things to remember when searching for a home.

 

Below are five of our favorite tips:

 

Become Pre-Approved for a Loan

Lety Service, a sales associate with Ebby’s McKinney Office, recommends that potential buyers speak to a lender before looking for a home so they know exactly what price range to stay in. “It’s devastating to fall in love with a home only to have a lender tell you later that you can’t afford it,” she says. “If you are pre-approved first, you will find a home that you love and will be able to obtain financing within your price range. This will prevent the disappointment of comparing a home in your available price range to one that you aren’t qualified to purchase.”

 

Be Organized

During the process of buying a home and working with your lender, you will be asked to provide information and documentation. Have your W2s, pay stubs, bank statements and ID ready to give to your lender. After review of these documents, the lender may require additional information. You will also sign documents throughout the loan process. Getting your home inspection will be one of your first steps after submitting a purchase contract. Also, scheduling the following services to be placed in your name with a start date will need to be on your list: electricity, Internet, phone, cable, water, and gas. Organize what days you will devote to each task and the process will run smoother.

 

Keep Options Open

Lety advises future homeowners to start with an open mind because they might fall in love with something they didn’t think they would and to focus on the floor plan and location instead of cosmetic upgrades. “Looking at multiple houses in person, instead of online, will give you an idea of what you definitely like, don’t like, and maybe even some things you could settle for.” Keep in mind if you find a home with a perfect floor plan but can’t stand the carpet or countertops, you may be able to do a home-improvement loan and roll the costs into your mortgage.

 

Avoid New Lines of Credit

Debra Smith, a loan originator with Home Team Mortgage, advises that when you decide to start looking for a home you should avoid taking out new credit or making large purchases on credit. “This is especially important once you are in the middle of your loan process,” she says. “Any new account could affect your ability to qualify for your loan and cause you to lose the home that you may be a week away from moving into.”

 

 

Opt for a Bridge Loan

Are you a current homeowner looking to purchase a new home? If you want to use your current home equity to put down on your new home, the sale of your old home must close on or before the closing date of your new home. This makes everything time-sensitive and there is always a chance the financing of your buyer could fall through. Smith says a “bridge loan” may be the ideal solution for you. “You can use a bridge loan to use the equity in your current home even before you put it on the market,” she says. “So if you don’t want to sell before you move, or you don’t want to make your offer contingent on selling, our bridge loan may be just right for you.”

 

Considering purchasing a home? Home Team Mortgage Company, Ebby Halliday’s affiliated mortgage company, has a track record of building long-lasting relationships by providing exceptional service with competitive rates. With an office in each Ebby Halliday branch, Home Team Mortgage loan officers offer the convenience of one-stop shopping, coupled with expertise to ensure peace of mind for borrowers and agents alike.

 

For all your mortgage questions and needs, contact Home Team Mortgage Company.

 

 

 

How to Dress the Perfect Bed (+ IBB Day of Design)


unspecified-2

Have you ever wondered what gives hotel beds the edge on luxury and comfort? Well, now you can find out.
On Saturday, Feb. 25, Frisco-based IBB Design Fine Furnishings is hosting a Day of Design open to the public.
 
From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., enjoy sips and bites, and learn about a variety of design topics from IBB’s talented team of designers. The schedule includes presentations on how to decorate a bookshelf, add depth to your interiors, and more! Guests will even get to take home one of IBB’s signature giveaway bags.
 
As a sneak peek into the event, IBB Designer Michael Reese gave us tips on how to dress the perfect bed!
Read below to learn a few of his tricks, and mark your calendar for Feb. 25 to learn more.
 
IBB Day of Design
 

*Pick the best sheets

It’s important to dress your bed with a good foundation — bedsheets. If you’re unsure about what sheets are right for you, read here!
 
*Don’t skimp on pillow inserts
What you fill your pillows and duvet covert with can make a world of a difference. Down fills give you the best look, but if you’re allergic, a soft alternative will suffice.
 
*Decorate
With decorative pillows, start small in the front and work backward with a variety of sizes.
 
*Layer, layer, layer!
Layering will give you the overall luxurious look and feel. Try to layer with sheets, a coverlet, a duvet, and a variety of pillows. You can even add a foot quilt or throw for a final touch.
 
Want to learn more about creating a sophisticated and inviting bed? Reese will present at 11 a.m. during the event.
 
For a complete schedule of design seminars, click here.

 

Fresh Listing Friday: High-Ceiling Homestead


FLF Logo

Happy Friday y’all! This week’s Fresh Listing Friday is a gorgeous home situated in Las Colinas, just 15 minutes from both DFW and Love Field airports and 20 minutes from downtown Dallas. Built by Coventry Homes, 7320 San Felipe Drive offers hardwood flooring, a study, and a gourmet kitchen with granite countertops and stainless-steel appliances. Take a virtual tour below to see the plentiful windows and upgrades throughout!

Need-to-know Details:

• Gorgeous traditional, priced at $539,000
• 3,640 square feet: 4 bedrooms, 4 baths
• Open floor plan, white oak hardwoods, plantation shutters, stainless-steel appliances, marble countertops
• Game room and media room with built-in bar
• Private backyard with covered patio

Las Colinas CustomFront Exterior Fresh Listing FridayFront Entryway
Fresh Listing Friday
Front Entryway Fresh Listing Friday
OfficeFresh Listing Friday
Formal Dining AreaFresh Listing Friday
Casual Living Area Fresh Listing Friday
KitchenFresh Listing Friday
Casual Dining AreaFresh Listing FridayGame Room Fresh Listing Friday
Built-In BarFresh Listing Friday
Media RoomFresh Listing Friday Fresh Listing Friday
Master Suite   Fresh Listing Friday
Covered PatioFresh Listing Friday
Rear Exterior

To view this listing, contact Liz Cougot at 214-909-9291 or LizCougot@Ebby.com.

A Quick Guide to Wine and Cheese Pairings


 

Wine Pairings

Valentine’s Day presents the perfect opportunity to indulge in life’s simple pleasures. But, pairing wine and cheese like the pros can be anything but simple. Whether you’re enjoying wine and cheese pairings today or any other day, being educated before heading to the grocery store can help your taste buds tremendously. Here are some quick tips on perfect pairings:

* Follow your taste preferences: If you don’t like a certain cheese or a certain wine, pairing it with something won’t change your opinion on the flavor.

* Try to match flavor profiles evenly: Avoid pairing mild cheeses with strong wines.

* The bolder the cheese, the bolder the wine should be: Cheese that has been aged for a long time needs to be paired with a full-bodied wine.


 

Cheese Pairings

Fresh/Soft & Bloomy Cheeses: Burrata, Ricotta, Mozzarella, Feta, Brie, Boursin
Pairs well with…
Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Moscato, Champagne

Cheese Pairings

Semi-Soft Cheeses: Havarti, Gruyère, Manchego
Pairs well with…
Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Viognier, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel

Cheese Pairings

Semi-Hard Cheeses: Cheddar, Gouda, Baby Swiss
Pairs well with…
Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Côtes du Rhône, Shiraz/Syrah, Merlot

Cheese Pairings

Hard Cheeses: Parmigiano Reggiano, Pecorino, Aged Manchego
Pairs well with…Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Zinfandel, Chianti

Cheese Pairings

Goat Cheeses: Chèvre, Pavé, Rave de Provence
Pairs well with…Pino Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Rosé, Champagne

Cheese Pairing

Blue Cheese: Gorgonzola, Roquefort, Stilton
Pairs well with…Chardonnay, Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux, Zinfandel, Nebbiolo, Port

For more tips on the perfect wine and cheese pairings, visit HEB.com.

 

Market Your Luxury Home to the World


 

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

 

Selecting representation when buying or selling a luxury property is critical to your experience and success. Ebby Halliday Realtors offers clients whose homes are priced at $750,000 and above the advantages of its affiliation with Luxury Portfolio International, the luxury marketing arm of the Leading Real Estate Companies of the World network.

 

Luxury Portfolio International is a unified collection of the world’s most experienced, visible and highly regarded experts in luxury real estate marketing over 50,000 properties annually on the award-winning luxuryportfolio.com and in prestigious publications around the globe. Luxury Portfolio markets more $1 million-plus listings than any other luxury real estate network.

 

Luxury Portfolio offers sellers extensive search engine and social media strategies – ensuring their luxury listing is in front of today’s sophisticated consumers where and when they are searching. In addition to leveraging social media platforms, Luxury Portfolio utilizes international partner websites, such as juwai.com, which reaches beyond the Great Firewall of China to target the wealthy Chinese buyer, and wallstreetjournal.com, to reach affluent online viewers. Each property on luxuryportfolio.com is translated to nine languages and 60-plus currencies, which results in consumers visiting the site from almost every country each month.

 

Simply put, sellers who list with Ebby Halliday significantly increase the chances of attracting a qualified buyer to their luxury home due to our affiliation with Luxury Portfolio International. For buyers, finding a home is a personal process of discovery, and Ebby Halliday Realtors and the accomplished global network of Luxury Portfolio brokers is ready to assist in the journey. Explore luxury properties around the world at luxuryportfolio.com.

 

Learn more about Ebby Halliday Realtors, its Associates and all of its listings at the award-winning ebby.com.

 

PHOTOS: The estate home at 5326 Edlen in Old Preston Hollow exceeds all expectations. It is offered by Ebby’s Patricia Stampley for $8,650,000.

 

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

 

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

 

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

Market Your Luxury Home to the World

How to Make Your Bouquet Last Longer


Colorful roses background. Beautiful, high quality, good for holidays, valentines's gift.

 

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, and that means flowers are flying off the shelves.

 

In fact, Valentine’s Day is the “second-largest holiday next to Mother’s Day for the floral industry,” according to 1800Flowers via Fortune Magazine. It’s estimated that Americans will spend $2 billion on flowers this year, according to GoBankingRates.com.

 

If you’re the lucky recipient of a bouquet of flowers, here are some tips on how to make your bouquet last longer.

 

1. Clean vases are a must.

If whatever container you’re putting your stems in isn’t clean, bacteria will continue to grow and kill your flowers. MarthaStewart.com suggests scrubbing the vase with a mixture of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water before rinsing.

2. If a whole leaf is submerged underwater, tear it off.

When leaves remain underwater, they decompose and bacteria grows. You must keep bacteria at bay if you want your flowers to last.

3. The colder the water, the better.

When you want to cook vegetables, you steam them with warm water until they wilt and soften. Think about it like this … if you use room temperature or warm water, you’re causing the flowers soften. The colder your water, the better your results.

4. Cut stems at a 45-degree angle.

When you cut flower stems with scissors, you are constricting the straw-like tube that allows nutrients to reach the top of the flower. Use a Swiss Army knife for soft stems and a pair of bypass cutters for woody stems. Cut the stems at a 45-degree angle.

5. Measure flower food precisely.

Avoid taking the easy route and dumping flower food into the vase with your flowers. Too much flower food will poison your flowers, and too little flower food is somewhat pointless. Use the directions on the packet of flower food to follow the correct food-to-water ratio.

6. Fresh water is a must.

Every two days, or when the water gets cloudy, replace the water in the vase. With each water change, it’s recommended to clean the vase. Use the same recipe as above.

5 Culinary Classes for Couples


Looking for something new to do with your partner? Try taking a culinary class! Whether you’re a self-proclaimed gourmand, or simply looking to dip your toe in the water of the culinary world, here are some courses you can find in North Texas. They may cost a small fee, but the memories will last a lifetime.
 
1. Mozzarella Company
Situated in Deep Ellum, the Mozzarella Company is a bustling cheese factory that produces almost 200,000 pounds of cheese a year. What better place to learn about cheese than from the experts? The Mozzarella Company offers three classes perfect for any cheese enthusiast: wine and cheese pairing, beer and cheese pairing, or hands-on cheesemaking. To see the schedule, click here. To make a reservation, call 214-741-4072 or email mozzcomanager@mozzco.com.
 
2. Central Market
Gourmet grocer Central Market offers a wide variety of classes at its various Texas locations. Learn how to make sauces, gumbo, or Korean BBQ from cooking school staff, or hone your knife skills and the latest cooking techniques. But wait…there’s more! Central Market also invites special culinary guests and celebrity chefs to teach various classes, so be sure to keep an eye on your nearest location’s calendar.
 
3. Sur La Table
Popular cooking retail store Sur La Table has a few locations across North Texas. While you may just be familiar with the store as a place to shop for kitchen items, each location also offers many different in-store cooking courses. Learn to make sweet treats like doughnuts, crêpes, or macarons, or opt for a culinary escape with courses centered around Thai food or Spanish tapas. The calendar is quite extensive, so you’ll be sure to find something in your budget on a date that’s right for you. Call your local Sur La Table for more details.
 
4. Kenichi – Ken’s Sushi Class
This modern sushi restaurant in Dallas’ Victory Park neighborhood offers sushi rolling classes once to twice a month. For $45, enjoy appetizers before learning to make a California, Spicy Tuna, or Veggie roll from Chef Ken McCullough. Classes are usually on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. For more information and to stay in-the-know for when classes are offered, follow Kenichi on Facebook. You can find upcoming classes or book a reservation on Kenichi’s Eventbrite page.
 
5. Stoney’s Wine Lounge Wine Pairing
This charming wine bar and lounge in the heart of Lakewood offers three wine pairing classes each week. The hour-long class is taught by owner Stoney Savage himself, and covers what to look for in wines that pair well with food. You’ll even learn about the various grape categories and what foods each one is known to pair with. The ticket price includes a tasting of six wines and seven bites such as nuts, chocolate, cheese, and sausage. Classes are offered at 7 p.m. on Tuesdays, 6:30 p.m. on Thursdays, and 6 p.m. on Saturdays. Purchase two tickets for $24 on Groupon.com, and then call 214-953-3067 to reserve your spot. An additional $8 per person is due upon arrival.