Hanukkah at the Skirball

This year Hanukkah begins at sundown on December 1st and ends on December 9th.  Without a doubt one of the most wonderful ways to commemorate this holiday which celebrates religious freedom is to visit the amazing Skirball Center and partake of their various offerings and their Hanukkah special events.

On Thursday December 2 at 1pm and continuing on Friday December 3 and Saturday December 4 the Skirball will offer their Lights of Hanukkah Family Tour.  Part of their Focus on Visions and Values series, this gallery talk features the history and significance of this special Jewish holiday and is included free with Museum admission.

On Sunday December 5th the Skirball Center will celebrate Down Home Hanukkah! This exciting event features American Folk Art, live music, hands-on arts and crafts projects, circus arts, Hanukkah treats and open woodworking and quilting demonstrations.  It is a full day of events starting at 11am and continuing until 4pm.  Tickets for this event are $10 and do not include Museum exhibits.

Children under the age of 12 are free and welcome at the event but must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Performers featured at the event include Peter Himmelman, The Witcher Brothers, The Kinetic Theory of Circus Theatre, and drop in workshops are offered in the Candlemaker’s Craft, Zat Gezunt! Handkerchief Dolls, And Bookmark Ribbon Weaving.

Gallery exhibits featured at The Skirball Center in the month of December include: The Pieces of Me: L.A. GOALThe 1000 Journals Project , Maira Kalman: Various, Illuminations (of a Crazy World) and the world famous Noah’s Ark at the Skirball which if you haven’t seen, you should!  Be advised that Noah’s Ark tickets are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis only.

For more information on events at The Skirball visit www.skirball.org

 

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The Encino Patch

If you are looking for a great way to keep your finger on the pulse of Encino, you need look no further than the Encino Patch.  This exciting electronic magazine or “ezine” offers daily articles about everything in an around Encino, CA. Experts from all areas of business and all walks of life contribute weekly articles about subjects of interest to Encino and surrounding area residents. 

I myself write a weekly article entitled The Real State of Real Estate.  This week’s article is ‘Tis the Season to Keep Your Home on the Market, which is filled with insight as to how and why to market your home during the Holiday season.  Recent articles include The Worst Home Selling Mistake and Enter Short Sales with Eyes Wide Open.

The Encino Patch features links to area resources and businesses as well as information about area events, arts and entertainment, sports, schools, nightlife, opportunities to volunteer and shopping.  You can visit The Encino Patch by visiting www.encino.patch.com or you can have it delivered daily to your email in box by subscribing to The Encino Patch on their home page.  Check it out and you’ll find me at “The Patch” on regular basis.  I’m Carol Wolfe and “Nobody Does it Better!”

Working with a Negotiation Specialist

What is expertise worth to you?  If you were facing brain surgery you would easily choose a proven board certified surgeon who had successfully performed the procedure numerous times over a first year med student.  Wouldn’t you?  You wouldn’t think of turning your taxes over to the care of your teenager with the rational that they were successfully passing 10th grade math. Of course not, because expertise is valuable.  It saves time, money, and stress.  Expertise can be a life saver.

Expertise in Real Estate is no less valuable.  For most people buying a home is the largest purchase across their life time.  Although it is a huge financial consideration it is also a tremendous emotional consideration.  People rarely buy houses, more often they buy homes.  Home is where you invest your heart, your time, your family and your future.  When buying a home you need the expertise of a Realtor who has proven excellence and knowledge of today’s ever changing market.  You need a Negotiation  Specialist.

To receive a Negotiation Specialist Designation a Realtor must comply with rigorous course work and demonstrate excellence in the area of skilled negotiation.  Would you trust anything less with the sale or purchase of your home?

Don’t settle for less than the best for the sale or purchase of your home, use a Negotiation Specialist.  I’m Carol Wolfe, I am a Negotiation Specialist and nobody does it better.

 

Wants and Needs for Home Buyers

When buying a home it’s important to have a list of  your wants and needs.  It’s always worthwhile to list your desires on a piece of paper.  There is something very freeing about being specific.  It can seem daunting at first, but it is important to remember that your list can change whenever necessary.

Over the years I have had clients come to me and tell me their wants and needs only to realize that they had changed.  I had one young couple tell me that they needed a three bedroom home with a large backyard and they wanted great room with a fireplace that overlooked the backyard.  After showing them a number of properties that fit their list but left them uninspired I discovered there was one need that had been left off their list.  They needed to be in a specific school district so their children could be close to their friends.  Armed with that knowledge I was able to help the find the home of their dreams in only one day.

It’s essential to know your wants and needs in order to successfully find the ideal home for you and your family.  Things to consider including on your list are square footage, the number of bedrooms, neighborhood, schools, proximity to work, allocation of space, cost,  necessary repairs, renovations and investments, amenities, appliances, green features, architecture and esthetic features.  Of course each person’s list of wants and needs will be unique based on their tastes, preferences and life style.

The wonderful thing about Southern California is that we have the ability to fulfill everyone’s wish list.  Whether you are looking for a Craftsman home on acreage or a French inspired Villa with virtually no commute into the city, Los Angeles and its neighboring suburbs has all your real estate solutions.

If you are shopping for quality real estate in the Los Angeles area, I hope you’ll give me the opportunity to meet all of the wants and needs on your list.  I’m Carol Wolfe and nobody does it better.

Underwood Family Farms

It’s harvest time in Southern California.  Do you ever wonder where your fresh produce comes from?  Underwood Family Farms in Moorpark is fully functioning sustainable family farm that allows visitors, for a small fee, to tour their facilities and even pick and purchase fresh produce directly out of the field.

For parents with small children this is an excellent educational outing.  For the little ones the Underwood Family Farm has animals to pet and view and all of the trappings of the best available pumpkin patches during the fall festival, at other times during the year it also offers an opportunity to ride on a hay wagon into the fields in order to identify and pick their own vegetables.  Children delight in seeing how broccoli actually grows!  There is something magical about tromping through the dirt and discovering various lettuces or pulling leaves up from the ground to discover hidden treasures such as carrots, onions, beets and radishes.  It is a great way to teach children about whole foods and where they come from.  It also makes them interested to taste them.

Underwood Family Farms is a great Fall outing to entertain and educate. Ticket prices Monday through Friday are $3 and weekend tickets during the Fall Festival (Oct. 1-30 are $12, but offer a wide variety of Halloween activities)  Children under the age of 2 are free.  Vegetable picking is not available during the month of October.

I’m Carol Wolfe and nobody does it better.

The 23rd Annual Taste of Encino

Encino is a wonderful place to call home. Among its many spectacular attributes are some of the finest restaurants in the world. Each year Encino celebrates its culinary excellence by taking to the streets in a festival of flavors known as The Taste of Encino.
This year will mark the 23rd anniversary of the Festival and it promises to be one for the record books.

The 2010 festival is scheduled for October 9th and will take place at the St. Cyril School which is located at 4548 Haskell Avenue in Encino, at Haskell Avenue and Ventura Blvd.
The fun begins at 10 am and will continue until 9pm.

Area restaurants will be in attendance offering a wide variety of food along with artisans and craftspeople with treasures sure to delight. For those with young children there will also be a kid’s area complete with a moon bounce, a rock climbing wall, and a pumpkin patch ideal for picture taking. Additionally there will be home improvement and disaster preparedness exhibitions as well as a beer and wine pavilion.

Ticket prices are $5 for adults, admission is free for children under the age of 12. Proceeds from the event will be used to fund local school and community projects including the annual Teacher of the Year luncheon and the Disaster Preparedness Community Outreach. Free parking is available within walking distance to the festival. Tickets can be purchased at the event or from the Encino Chamber of Commerce.

Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to enjoy the best of Encino’s food and entertainment while supporting local schools and community outreach! I know I’ll be there. I’m Carol Wolfe and nobody does it better.

Location, Location, Location

Looking for the perfect home in the perfect location? Look no further, nestled in the prestigious Rancho Estates, this gated traditional home features 5-bedrooms, 4 bathrooms and plenty of custom upgrades. Set back from the street on almost a ½ acre this home offers a double door entry into warm, large, light filled rooms. From custom carpeting and crown moldings to leaded glass windows, this home is all about the details. The stone and slate fireplace in the living room sports a lovely wood mantle, the adjacent formal dining room invites with Venetian plaster walls.
The chef’s kitchen is an entertainer’s paradise with granite counters, center island, custom pantry and stainless steel appliances from Thermador, Fisher Paykel, and GE Monogram. Custom cherry cabinets, wainscoting and crown moldings complete the effect. The family room beckons with its hardwood floors, beamed ceilings, custom bar and fireplace. Completing the downstairs are Maid’s quarters, a game room and the master suite, which boasts 3 closets. There are 2 additional bedrooms upstairs and another full bath.
The lush landscaped grounds include a covered pergola, brick decking, pool and a spa. Sculpted grass areas are interspersed with a wide variety of bearing fruit trees including lemon, tangerine and plum. An outdoor kitchen including a barbecue, refrigerator, 2 gas burners and a sink make al fresco dining effortless.
To arrange a private viewing of this spectacular home please give my office a call at 818 285-3688, or view additional photos at www.RanchoStreet.com. You can also stop by the open house this Sunday, February 14 from 1 pm to 4 pm. I’m Carol Wolfe and Nobody Does it Better.

The Southern California Conservatory of Music by Carol Wolfe, The Encino Real Estate Report

There are so many wonderful things to see and do in the Los Angeles area that it is not uncommon for people to overlook some of the worthiest gems that make our home so truly remarkable.  pianoThe Southern California Conservatory of Music is one gem no one should overlook.  This wonderful institution is devoted to providing music instruction on many different levels.  They offer Private Music Lessons for Children and Young Adults on three levels preparatory, conservatory and adult studies.

Notably, they also offer music lessons for the blind and for students with multiple disabilities.  In fact they are the comprehensive year-round music conservatory in North America that teaches the blind through Braille music literacy.   Classes for the blind and disabled reading Braille music, sight singing, become adept at keyboard geography, applied listening skills within comparative history/listening classes, and orchestral instrumentation their our orchestral technology labs.

Their Fame program (Free Access to Music Education) offers teacher training, expertise, technology and materials so that blind students are able to be mainstreamed with traditional conservatory students.

The conservatory provides outreach to schools through out Los Angeles and orange counties.  What a remarkable institution with a remarkable mission and they are located right here in West Hills!  For more information about the conservatory or their programs please visit their website: www.sccm.us

Whitefire Theatre by Carol Wolfe, The Encino Real Estate Report

They say you can judge a society by the quality of art that is supports.  For residents in the San Fernando Valley this is good news as the caliber of theatre, art and music available here rivals anywhere in the world. Whitefire One example of long standing excellence is the Whitefire Theatre.

The Whitefire Theatre proudly resides on Ventura Blvd. on Restaurant Row in Sherman Oaks.  Since 1982 the Whitefire has dedicated itself to providing quality theatre to Los Angeles and The San Fernando Valley.  A member of the Valley Theatre League, the Whitefire presents a wide variety of theatre, from musicals to original dramas premièring for the first time before and audience.  The theatre space is also available for rent and is frequently used for film and television production as well as for casting sessions.

This summer the theatre will offer and array of original plays in their series called Friday Night Quickies. For more information about the theatre or upcoming shows visit their website: www.whitefiretheatre.com

I’m Carol Wolfe and nobody does it better.

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Canyonback Wilderness Park by Carol Wolfe, The Encino Real Estate Report

I’m always thrilled to show out-of-towners the lifestyle that is available by living in Southern California.  One of the great things about living in the San Fernando Valley is our close proximity to virtually every kind of terrain and weather. Westridge_Canyon A short jaunt could equally put us on a beach or atop of a mountain.  The latest in technology and city life is readily available but untouched wilderness is also close at hand.  The Westridge Canyonback Wilderness Park is one remarkable wilderness get away that is practically in Encino’s backyard.
 
The Westridge Canyonback Wilderness Park contains over 1,500 acres of untouched woodlands that are suitable for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding.  The park is bordered by upper Mandeville Canyon, Sullivan Canyon, Mission Canyon, and San Vicente Mountain Park and is accessible from both West Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. Dogs are permitted off leash in the park if they remain under the owner’s immediate control.

How truly amazing to be able to enjoy a morning hike in the midst of virgin forest and then spend the evening enjoying the night life of one of the world’s largest cities.  This is what living in Los Angeles affords to all of its residents. 

If you are considering relocating to the Los Angeles area and are interested in finding a distinctive home for a superlative price, please contact me.  I’m Carol Wolfe and nobody does it better.