Monday, October 11, 2010

GET REAL-TOR! "GREG ELLIOTT" The Love Shack Series Blog 2

One of the first three people to cross the threshold of the side door entrance to my "new old house" (The front door still doesn’t open. I need to buy a new one)was actually the person who most influenced me to buy a house…my good friend and realtor Greg Elliott. Greg and I have been friends since way before he became a realtor. Actually it's fair to say that he’s been one of my BFFs for more than 20 years! There's only a hand full of them floating around. Believe me, we both have the blackmail stories that go with such a long and mututally successful friendship and needless to say I don't think either of us will ever use them. Needless to say this will be delicately worded blog! 

Greg Elliott is the BEST realtor in all the world! The sad thing is after buying this house is that I immediately posted that as my Facebook Status much to the chagrin of my other realtor friends. They quickly and good-naturedly pointed out my politically incorrect post and I do see their point. But come on, at the moment I was partial. I’ve always been partial to Greg! If I had to choose member to a kickball game, an alliance for the TV show "Survivivor", or someone to have to go on a criminal spree with, Greg would always be in my posse. Well at least I'd always invite him!

He’s one of about 5 people on this Earth that would make me lose on that old TV game show “Make Me Laugh” by just looking at me the wrong way. Believe me, for me buying a house was not a laughing matter. That’s why I really am grateful to Greg, not only for his loyal friendship over the years, but for taking on the thankless task of helping me to buy a house. Believe me, no commission in the world could be worth selling me a house (especially one under a hundred thousand). I often think “Greg made me buy the house” more out of concern for my well-being and security than anything at all.

When I say Greg made me buy the house, it’s not that much of an exaggeration. I don’t know if I would have done it if he wasn’t able to make it such a non-emotional experience and some levity gratefully. It was more like getting me through a hard work-out by telling me I could do it at all the right times. Greg wouldn’t hover over me about me buying a house, yet he consistently and factually would keep me appraised with the great opportunities that buying a house in this buyer’s market would afford. He eventually made me see that my emotional stubbornness was keeping me away from not only making a good investment but frankly in this case cheaper than most rentals! Once I dove in, it was so much easier than I thought (Of course Greg's reassurance was always helpful.

Greg Elliott is a great friend, not only to me, but too many people.. So yes great sense of humor. The perfect amount of intelligent sarcasm and acerbic wit mixed with not being too evil. Greg is also very kind in general.

He’s a great business man as he still is the Owner of Synergy Educational Services, an educational travel company he’s been running since the one we both worked at was driven under by the ridiculously self serving expenses of an arrogant owner (Not that I’m bitter). But funny how Greg has kept his company making a profit since the day it opened; something our former boss never could seem to do. In fact, I have worked part-time for Greg's company on occasion and got to see many schools and teachers we worked with in the past.

I remember Greg when we were 20, then 30, then 40! Wait, I take the 40 back. And it’s been really cool to see him transform over the years into who he is now on the inside and out. Not that he ever looked bad, but he’s only grown better looking over the years which is always a source of comparison pain to me. Greg took me to my first spinning class at the YMCA and despite his efforts to convince me not to do everything everyone else was doing for the entire hour, my stubbornness prevailed and I could barely walk for a week.

Whenever I’m looking for inspiration to take me to the next level whether it be fitness, finance, or friendship, Greg has always been there for me. I TRUST Greg. So if you are thinking that now might be a really good time to buy a house, you may want to call OLD TOWN PROPERTIES and ask for an appointment with him. I promise you Greg will have YOUR best interests in mind. He certainly won’t BS you! Having bought, kept and flipped several properties of his own over the years, he knows houses inside out and what it will take to make an old home, YOUR NEW HOME! I put in about $4,000 and already would say that this house jumped $20,000 in value over the first three months I owned it.

I am grateful to have Greg Elliott as a friend and as my realtor. Because of Greg, I have a house. Because of the love and patience that many people have invested into this house, I now feel like I have a home.

Featured Song: A House Is Not a Home -Chris Colfer (Of GLEE. Yes, i'm a GLEEK!)

Featured Quote:
"A true friend is someone who says nice things behind your back.”

Friday, October 1, 2010

I can DO BLUE can you DO BLUE?

OK! Honestly, it wouldn’t be that hard for me to say I’m becoming way too jaded as a professional fund-raiser and consumer. Ribbons and walks are all starting to blur together to me. I’ve now literally started to affiliate causes and illness with colors!

When I think pink I think it’s breast cancer, yellow its Lance Armstong’s Livestrong, and Red is HIV AIDS or the Organization ONE that had everyone wearing those Inspir(RED) shirts. While, I admire Susan G. Komen for getting her own M&MS, I’m not sure I want to think about breast cancer while I’m eating them.

I could go on, but I think there may be a little part of me that is just jealous, because as an Arthritis Foundation employee, I often wish that people would associate arthritis with something other than the elderly. To this day, I can tell you that the majority of the people I have met don’t realize kids get arthritis! It’s such a misunderstood disease.

Well, I may have got my wish! This October 12th is World’s Arthritis Day and the United States and the Arthritis Foundation are participating for the first time and in a big way. And our mission should we choose to accept it…..”DO BLUE”!

I have to admit, at first, it sounded a little funny to me. I mean, can you do a color? Isn’t that not only physically possible but just begging for parody? Sorry I digress, at least BLUE is one of my favorite colors, so visually this ought to be an aesthetically pleasing promotion.

Still what do I do?? And how exactly does one “DO BLUE”? Is it a dance? Of course my first thought was dying my hair blue but come on, that’s so obvious! Not to mention that I have never died my hair so there’s a little fear of the unknown there. I mean they do have ones that rinse out the next day, right? I’ve got to come up with something unique and creative. I am feeling the pressure now. I don’t want to be out-blued by anyone!

I think the beauty of the promotion is instead of something limited like “WEAR BLUE”, this opens things up to allow people with arthritis to express themselves in anyway by using the color blue. Blue shirts, blue toe nails, blue face paint, there are really no limits to how someone can “DO BLUE”.

The moral of the story, as an Arthritis Foundation employee, it’s my job to make you stop and take notice that this October 12th, is a day that 46 million Americans, and 300,000 children that live with the painful reality of arthritis are for the first time uniting with the entire world to bring attention to a cause that is very personal to them.

I am so grateful for my creative friends. Throughout the years many of you have helped produce benefit CDs, art calendars, design T-Shirts; I could go on and on. This time I am humbly asking for your help to turn Orlando blue on Oct 12-World’s Arthritis Day. Some cities are even lighting up skyscrapers! I’m hoping all of you will find some way to “DO BLUE” on that day, and take a picture of it. Then send the picture to me at or post it on my facebook page at I will be using the photos to create a You Tube video and a photo essay for our Foundation’s Florida State E-newsletter that goes out to approximately 25,000 people through the state. Please consider joining us in our efforts! It’s just one day, but it’s a very important day to me and many of the families that I have grown to love along the way. Thanks!!!

Peace, Love & Music T

Related Quote: I think I have something tonight that's not quite correct for evening wear. Blue suede shoes.
Elvis Presley

Related Song: Blue-Eiffel 65