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Springtime in Solivita

March is our last cool month in Central Florida and with spring beginning later in the month, this is the perfect time to grow some vegetables.  Our latest favorite veggie to grow is Baby Bok Choy.  This is an amazing plant to grow from seed and it only takes 2 months to grow, shorter if you pick the baby leaves.  Baby Bok Choy is perfect for container gardening as the plant will grow a max of 5” tall with white stems and glossy, dark green, tender leaves.  While these tasty leaves are still small you can use them in a salad.  Once the plant gets bigger cook them up in a stir fry or steam them in broth and serve as a veggie or add them to soup.

I already have my seeds and planted our Baby Bok Choy a week ago.  Lee and I love this time of the year while the air is refreshing with warm sunshine.  Springtime is the perfect time of the year to visit us and see all that Central Florida offers.  Our lifestyle is relaxed and filled with beautiful surroundings, our homes are modern and highly livable, our job market is flourishing, and our economy is strong.  The latest statistics state that nearly 900 people move to Florida each day for many reasons.  We are not only a great state to retire in but a great state to work in and a great state to raise a family in.   Florida has no personal income tax, our property taxes are reasonable and our weather is stunning.  Call us and we will be happy to show you around the neighborhood and introduce you to the good life in Solivita and our surrounding communities.

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Lemon Blueberry Chicken Salad

Considering this is Corned Beef Month I thought I would pass along a lower fat recipe made with Florida fresh blueberries.


  • 2 cups Cooked Chicken cubed. Buy a roaster chicken from one of the local groceries. 
  • ½ Cup sliced green onions
  • ½ cup diced celery
  • ½ cup diced Apple
  • ½ cup Fresh Blueberries
  • 1 Cup Low Fat Lemon Blueberry Dressing
  • Assorted Lettuces about 20 oz


After assembling the above and mixing up the dressing pour dressing over salad and enjoy.

Low Fat Lemon Blueberry Dressing

Mix together ¾ cups fresh or frozen blueberries, ½ cup low fat lemon yogurt, 2 TBSP.  Mayonnaise, and 1 tsp salt until blended. Chill and serve. 

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It is Almost Florida Fresh Blueberry Season

Did you Know?  That Florida grows the earliest blooming blueberries in North America    

Did you Know?    Florida Blueberries were developed by crossing northern high bush varieties from Michigan and NJ with native wild berries from Florida.

Did you Know?  Current research has deemed blueberries as a super food.

Did you Know?  – That Central Florida has lots of U-Pick It Farms 

Well now that you know.  However, you enjoy your berries, enjoy them Florida Fresh. 

Whether you pick them yourself, order them in advance from the farm or buy them from Publix; Florida Fresh Blueberries are a sweet taste treat that is good for you.

I am listing two local farms where Lee and I have picked our own berries, but there are many farms to choose from in our area.  Blueberries are easy to pick, the bushes are tall so bending is not really required, and the farm will give you a basket to strap on for “easy peasy picking”.  Berries are great freshly picked, freeze beautifully and enhance both sweet and savory dishes.  

Late Bloom Blueberry Farm

115 Scenic Highway

Haines City, FL 33844



Whitehead’s Blueberry Farm

1024 Macon Road 

Winter Haven, FL 33884


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Looking for something new to do, why not visit the…

Sunnyland Boat Festival on Lake Dora in Tavares from March 24 – 27th 2022

This festival is the largest Antique and Classic Boating Event on the East Coast and for the last two years it has been cancelled due to covid, so this year this event should be bigger than ever.  Want to buy an antique boat, this is the show to attend.  Enjoy the 250 – 300 boats on display, visit the food court, the beer garden, the nautical flea market, or the Sunnyland Ship’s Store. Lots of vendors are expected to attend and the atmosphere is always fun.  This makes for a fun afternoon out in the Florida Sunshine.  If you plan to visit, the show is in Wooton Park on Lake Dora, 123 South Joanna Avenue, Tavares, FL 32778.

Or visit Sebring to attend a throw-back Soda Festival from April 1- 3rd.

Sebring is a small, old town along the Lake Wales Ridge in Central Florida and the Sebring Soda Shop holds a craft soda festival in the beautiful, historic downtown giving visitors a chance to sample more than 200 flavors of craft made soda.  Flavors range from traditional colas and root beers, but the soda festival is also serving up interesting flavors such as prickly pear, candies bacon, and cucumber and pepper.  The fee for this is $5.00 for eight samples or $10.00 for 18 samples.  

What makes a soda a craft soda? Each of the sodas you will sample are made in small batches without corn syrup.  Admission to the festival is free and on Saturday night there will be a free Block Party Concerts from 6 – 9 pm with a live band, food trucks, and beer and wine. 

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Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day

It is easy to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  Put a Corned Beef in a pot, add some cabbage, carrots and potatoes and boil till tender, break out the mustard and rye bread and it is a feast.  Of course, It is easier to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by letting someone else do the cooking. When we lived up north St. Patrick’s Day would find us at McSorley’s Old Ale House, a New York City Institution that opened sometime around the Civil War.  It was always fun, lively and the beer was fresh and cold.  Now that we live in the Sunshine State we head to Lizzy’s in Orlando for an Irish Pub.  Lizzy McCormack’s is  “a hole in the wall” on Orange Avenue in Orlando and always an interesting stop.  If you are looking for a real St. Patrick’s Day party Lizzy McCormack’s has an Outdoor Beer Garden, Multiple Bars inside and a Front Patio that is party read for St. Patrick’s Day.  Of course, every space has multiple bars and on St. Patrick’s Day McCormack’s is serving from 8:30 am to 2:00 am.  We have friends with tickets for St. Patrick’s Day Kegs and Eggs Breakfast at Lizzy’s and they have planned a day filled with fun, music and the wearing of the green.

Our family Celebration will be at Mom’s for a Traditional Corned Beef & Cabbage Celebration, and it is a night we all look forward to.  After all, we get up and go to work the next morning, so a quiet, tasty evening filled with good food and the love of family is the perfect celebration for us.

Sorry if you are not lucky enough to have Mom in the Neighborhood cooking up a delicious, corned beef dinner just for you.  If you have to go out, may I suggest you head over to Toojay’s Deli, 7600 Dr. Phillips Blvd, Orlando, FL for a great Corned Beef Sandwich.   When Lee and I have a craving for deli TooJay’s is where we head.  We usually go for breakfast; but end up eating a Corned Beef or a Pastrami Sandwich, after all we can get eggs anywhere.  If you go, please don’t forget the pickles.

Lee and I can always stop by Lizzy’s later in the year, when we find ourselves in downtown Orlando, and enjoy a pint when the crowds and excitement of St. Patrick’s Day is done and we can quietly contemplate how lucky we are to live in such a beautiful spot.  In Central Florida we have it all.  Orlando is only a short drive or a quick trip on the Sunrail away, providing the benefit of the various activities the city offers, the parks, concerts, events, museums and restaurants while we enjoy life in  a pristine private community surrounded by nature.

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Bring More Sunlight into Your Home

An affordable way to bring natural light into your home is with a Solar tube a/k/a sun tunnel.  These high performance, natural lighting systems significantly brighten your living space at a fraction of the cost of a skylight or other lighting options.

Adding this option to your home is not only a green solution but it is a nice feature for any room, hallway, or even your closet. Your home is a unique reflection of you and your style but without proper lighting your home may feel closed in and dark.  The benefits of daylight are indisputable; studies have shown that daylight can make you more productive by boosting your energy level,; it can strengthen your mental abilities by improving concentration and it can enhance your well-being by lifting your mood.  Even on a cloudy day, a Solar tube will bring in an amazing amount of natural light into your space.  In addition, a solar tube can be installed by a pro in a few hours, and we know a very handy do-it-yourselfer who even installed his own.   This is a small investment with a big payoff PLUS think of the electricity you will save while enjoying the beauty of pure light.   Our environments have the ability to shape and influence our emotions and your home should be a place that restores, calms, and rejuvenates your mind and spirit. We added a solar tube to our home and light is streaming in highlighting the pure beauty of the colors, textures, and furnishings we surround ourselves with.   

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Considering Solar. What to know before you make the investment.

Solar energy is becoming more popular for homeowners. and we are starting to see panels on many roofs in our Central Florida Neighborhoods. Installing solar panels on your home is a great way to produce clean energy and will reduce your monthly electric bill, but before you invest you need to do your research. First determine how long you plan to remain in your home to see if you will benefit from reduced energy costs vs the expense of installing Solar Panels. If you are only adding solar to reduce your cooling/heating expenses be sure you are not trading off your energy expense for a Solar Panel Expense. If you are looking to reduce your footprint at any cost then Solar Panels are a really good choice.

Before signing a contract, consider the age of your roof. You would not want to install new Solar Panels on an Older Roof. Additionally, the weight of the solar panels must be considered as your roof may need to be engineered to support the panel weight. Check the Solar Companies References and business practices to be sure you choose the right company for you. Finally, before signing the contract, do your due diligence and Review the Panel Manufacturer’s Warranty, as Solar Panels are expensive to replace.

We are all for Green Energy, but as a realtor, we have seen too many Solar Contracts signed with long term payouts. What happens if you want to sell your home, but you still have a Solar Panel Payment in place? The Seller needs to pay off the panels in advance of the home sale, or the buyer needs to add the cost of the Solar Panel Contract to the sale price of the home.

Hopefully, in the future we will see the Federal Government Jump on Board and help to reduce the initial expense of Solar Panel Installation making Green Energy not only good for the environment but good for our pocketbooks too.