Summer Cottage

A good day to plan for summer!

Just listed for sale:  vintage fishing cottage in Stone Harbor NJ situated on a 35′ X 110′ lot.

Click HERE for the complete MLS fact sheet and pictures.


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Avalon and Stone Harbor update

The roads are better, but certainly not completely clear.  The snow drifts at street ends caused many issues today with vehicles unaware of the depth of the snow.

If you are riding down this weekend to check your house, be aware that  properties on the north side of streets are more likely to be obstructed with higher drifts (a function of the wind direction).

The snow plows cleared the center of each street – blocking driveways in the process.  So you will need your boots :)

With the extreme and extended cold temperatures,  it’s worthwhile to check on your shore house (unless the house is completely winterized/pipes drained). Thermostats set at 55 or 60 degrees may not be adequate heating  to prevent frozen pipes in unoccupied properties.

Every fall and winter I stress the value of a winter watch service.  Regular inspections of the interior and exterior of your home provide peace of mind, and tbe inspector can trouble shoot to prevent serious damage.

I’m happy to make recommendations of local service providers.

Stay warm!


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Well, the weather forecast was correct.  At least 10 inches of snow and hurricane force winds.

The snow drifts are impressive!

The Boroughs of Avalon and Stone Harbor did their best with plowing, but as of late this afternoon,  the roads are still a mess.

I took pictures and will post on Twitter.


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Snowy Memories

As I walked through the 50th Street dune path today on my lunch break, I had a flash back to childhood snow days.

Although substantial snow fall was rare, we made the best of it with sandy dune sledding!

Some local families would go sledding along the side of the Parkway ramps, but our little neighborhood gang would bring makeshift plastic sleds to the “hills” of the high dunes.

Realistically, only the first 2 or 3 runs were worthwhile.  After that, it was sand sledding!



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Frozen Shore Houses

Repeating this post-

The extreme cold temperatures are freezing pipes in occupied homes and businesses (including our office!).


A “check list” time of year – preparing your shore house for colder temperatures and the WIND!

Drain the outside shower and non-frost proof faucets (FYI- most water faucets on upper decks are NOT frost proof).

Disconnect hoses from all outdoor faucets (even the frost proof type-  water in hose will freeze and cause damage to faucet).

Close crawl space vents (air flow is essential in the summer months to keep the crawl space dry- but  cold air will freeze pipes even if the house is heated).

Set the heat between 55 and 60 degrees.  Open cabinet doors under all sinks to allow warm air to circulate around pipes.

Turn off the ice maker in the freezer.  This water line from the sink to the freezer is susceptible to freezing and water will continue to run if the ice maker is set to “on”.

Lock all windows- especially casement style with a crank (the wind will rattle the window, allowing it to open and possibly blow out).

Secure storm doors, outside shower doors, and trash cans.

Store or secure outdoor furniture and the grill.

Ideally, hire a local property watch service to regularly inspect the property during the winter months.  The inspector can turn up the heat during especially cold periods, and trouble shoot potential problems.

And then…think spring :)

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Happy New Year!

Wishing you a peaceful, and joyful 2018…


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The REAL Seashore Santa

This entry was originally posted Christmas 2008. I think it deserves an annual repeat.

Santa- the life size painted, cut out version- has been an important part of Christmas for as long as I can remember.

Santa2017Santa began his life of service in the early 1960’s at my parents’ first house in Avalon.  He was surrounded by big, multi-colored bulbs on the newly planted shrubs.  Inside that modest Golden Home rancher, 4 little girls hung their stockings on a cardboard fireplace with a plug in red bulb that magically turned the metal wheel to create “fire” .

In the 1970’s, Santa moved with our family 5 blocks south in Avalon to a larger, 2 story home with a real wood fireplace.  The colorful exterior lights were eventually replaced with more subtle white bulbs, but the spot light literally remained on Santa.

In the off season, Santa hung proudly on the garage wall- watching us all come and go.  Those little girls grew up and moved out, bringing back grandchildren for days on the beach.  In the 1980’s, my young sons were fascinated by Santa, and maybe a bit intimidated based on our attempts to use him for improved behavior!

When my parents downsized to a townhouse in the early 1990’s, my father asked if I wanted Santa for our home.  Of course, I was thrilled- and Santa didn’t complain as he was forced to leave Avalon and move “off shore”.

Santa loyally followed us on each move- knowing that he would be given a prominent position (with a flood light) at Christmas.   Several years ago, he gratefully moved back to the island to become a Stone Harbor resident!

Now approaching 50 years old, Santa is showing some signs of wear (aren’t we all).  I

thought about asking an artist to do a “touch up”, but it just doesn’t seem right.   It’s good to remember that so much time has passed- it helps us to celebrate the journey.


Merry Christmas!

P.S. for 2017-  I updated Santa’s photo this year.  He’s now in his mid- 50′s, fading a bit from a healthy share of salt air and sun light ;)

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Merry Merry!


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Island to Island

We had the opportunity to meet and talk with a temporary neighbor on our block.  We saw the car, and house lights (rare this time of year!)- and guessed they were winter tenants- maybe while building a house?

It turns out they are full time residents of St. John, USVI. They were traveling just before the hurricanes, and then unable to get back home immediately after.

The husband is a charter boat captain, and the wife is a full time real estate agent for a Sotheby’s office on St. John.  Obviously their lives and livelihoods were turned upside down.

Thankfully, their home survived the 200+ mile per hour winds (I can’t even imagine), and they are planning to move back by January -in time for high season.  They shared stories of the resilience and recovery from their island neighbors- very inspiring.

I thought it was unusual that they took refuge on our island- but the wife grew up in Cape May Court House and they have family and friends nearby. We discovered several “small world” connections.

An evening of perspective to be grateful for our simple life – especially meaningful at Christmas.

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Snowy Sunrise

This never gets old…


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