Maryland SPRING Meet-Up April 2013 What A Delight!
The call went out for a Spring 2013 Meet-up...Kerrie made the announcement and Maryland's Margaret Rome answered the call. I knew where I would be today the minute I talked to Margaret about scheduling. Real Estate has heated up with the weather but I am blessed to have a great team who work on loan files and answers calls and emails while I do my AR thing!
ActiveRain has become very important for my life and my business, meet-ups are a wonderful part of that interaction. I only wish I had a private jet so I could attend some in other cities to meet some of the folks I read so much about, folks who teach me so much every day. I don't write enough or comment enough, but I do read A LOT and learn something each and every day.
Each meet-up I have attended has been different and wonderful and, and, and...this one was exactly the way it was meant!
What a day it was! Spring has finally sprung in Maryland, the weather was gorgeous, the sun was shining, and the birds were chirping as I headed to Owings Mills (a suburb of Baltimore) to Linwood's Restaurant.
We were seated in a private room with a large, white-clothed square table. This was new, so often we are at one long table or many separate tables...I really liked being able to see everyone and chime in on conversations.
Folks got to circulate a bit before we sat down and conversations were lively as always. There was talk of Real Estate (of course), but I even overheard some Candy Saga strategy. There was a special three course menu with choices to satisfy the pickiest eater. Very fancy!
Margaret and TLH were our charming hosts. We were joined by Margaret's friend Annette Sussman, who's grandchild Theo has Cystic Fibrosis and in whose honor the meetup became a fundraiser. She was a delight and so grateful! She didn't stay long, but it was so nice to have her there. As everyone sat down, Margaret started us off with some of her history in Real Esate and why she blogs EVERY DAY. I got to share a little of what ActiveRain has meant to me (rambled and gushed) and then we worked our way around the table.
THE SALAD COURSE
Next to me was Suzanne Razaq, one of our newbies. Originally from England, she has been a short-sale negotiator for many years and is ready to jump back into selling Real Estate. Her goal is to make sure that she can help to ensure that her daughter has all the best care for life to help her manage her type 1 diabetes (An honorable goal!) She will be working with June Piper-Brandon at Century 21, what a mentor she has! June talked a bit about her blogging and real estate, but also shared how much her quilting means to her. She and her guild provide quilts to wounded warriors, children in foster care and more. She has done lots of baby quilts already this year. She is very busy in real estate, she must quilt in her sleep! June recently lost a friend, much to young, to Cystic Fibrosis, so this fundraiser also meant a lot to her. Our out-of-towner (seems to be at least one at each meetup, Margaret has a wide reach!) was David Brandschain from Philly. David talked about his history in home building and the challenges he faced over the last several years. He was a straight shooter and seemed to really soak up everything around him! He will be a great asset to ActiveRain! Next was the very handsome Johnny, Margaret's personal trainer, he trains at LifeBridge Fitness, just minutes from our location. He told us about his training philosophy and about a ski chalet he has for sale in Pennsylvania (it sounds AMAZING). We were joined today by Alan Gross, a staple in Maryland lending, he is not new to blogging or to mortgages, having spent almost 30 years as a loan officer. Alan offers on-line weekly training to realtors in social media and more. I was glad to finally meet Alan in person, he shares much of my philosophy in getting the job done right!
THE MAIN COURSE
We had Kerch McConlogue speak next. You can find her at WeFixBrokenWebsites.com. She is a web designer who knows how to speak plain english to non-geeks. If your website sucks, give her a call! TLH (Margaret's "The Lovely Husband") really glowed with pride as he spoke about how adaptable and tenacious his lovely bride is. He told us that there were often homes that he never thought anyone could sell that Margaret made happen. It was so nice to get a glimpse of their love story!
Zippy Larson from Zippy Baltimore told us about her special off-the-beaten track tours of Baltimore. What a wealth of Baltimore history she holds and shares. She spoke of her time in Iran and how it made her interested in her own town's history. I am looking forward to taking my family on a Zippy tour one day soon. Whitney Garret told us about her path to real estate staging and her love of real estate. She was encouraged to join us by Martha Brown (one of our missing regulars) whom she met after a staging class project at one of Martha's listings. If you are new in any aspect of real estate, meeting an ActiveRainer and jumping in with both feet will sure get you started out right!
The Dessert Course
Next came the lovely Penny Lownes of Prudential Pen Fed. She is just getting into this blogging thing and felt like this meetup was meant to be. She even had an appointment RIGHT NEXT DOOR just before lunch. We learned again how small the world is since she had worked with Andrea Bedard 5 years ago and refers clients to my cousin Jeanne Topper for their lending needs! We were visited by Reuvan Bloch, one of Margaret's clients, a great friend and of course a source of referrals ...referring many friends and family to Margaret. He told of his life in the Soviet Union and his ultra successful used clothing business (since retired). I even got to see a photo of his very handsome 3 year old grandson! Andrea spoke next, telling of her time in ActiveRain, special connections and sharing some of her life struggle. ActiveRain is a safe place, I am honored to know her and wish her family only good things. Our youngest attendee was Andrea's gorgeous daughter. One of the most well-behaved and sweetest kids I have ever had the pleasure of sharing a meal with. Tuesdays is Andrea's day with "the little one", she wasn't going to give up her special "mom and me" time, so she brought her along!
The group today was diverse and even international (Soviet Union, England, Germany, and the US). We had many years of experience (just one side of our square table had almost 90 years in Real Estate) and some newbies. We had a web designer, a tour guide, a stager, a personal trainer, several clients, 2 lenders, several realtors, a lovely husband and "a little one". We raised money for a great cause and shared an amazing meal with fabulous service.
ActiveRain Meetups...won't you join us next time? You just never know who you are going to meet!
A HUGE Thank You to Margaret Rome, lunch was amazing and you are much too generous. May you and Lee be blessed beyond measure!
Maryland Meet-Up April 2013 What A DELIGHT!
If you are considering purchasing a home in Maryland and want to be sure you are mortgage ready, my brother Tony and I will be happy to help! We help to make the mortgage process a pleasure!
If you already own your home, we are happy to provide a no-cost mortgage review to help you to determine if refinancing may be in your best interest. Please contact me at 410-960-2061.