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November 2009 - JANET PORCARO

Be Green and Earn Tax Credits

Be Green and Earn Tax Credits

Energy Star

Be Green and Earn Tax Credits

As we move through December, remember, you still have time to receive up to $1,500 in tax credits for energy efficient improvements or products for your home. The Stimulus Bill was not just designed for home buyers. Replace some windows, insulate your water heater, keep warm, save money and energy. Not to mention, this is a great time to replace some of your old inefficient appliances.

The Energy Star Program is a join venture of the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy. Through this program, there are many possibilities to “be green” and save money. Go to http://www.energystar.gov/ to find detailed information about tax credit guidelines and qualified products. Program qualification say this must be your existing home (sorry, no new construction) and your primary residence. In addition, there are state specific appliance rebates which can be researched using the Energy Star Partners Rebate Search Tool.

For a more commercial perspective, Lowes has a Home Auditing Tool to help you research other ways to save by receiving rebates, reducing utility bills, and making home improvements.  Build your savings at Loew’s. I found this website to be full of tips and credited articles about home maintenance.

Creative Energies Shine at Newton Open Studios

Creative Energies Shine at Newton Open Studios

Turquois necklace by June Lion

Last Sunday, craving a dose of culture, I visited The NOS Juried Show at the Newton Culture Center on Nevada Street. I was not disappointed. Not only was the work impressive, I also enjoyed socializing with some old friends and made some new ones. Fascinating to find how many artists are compelled to produce on many different levels.

Newton Actor Creates Museum Quality Jewelry Design

Drawn to the beautiful chunky necklace woven from beads from all over the world, I was delighted to meet the spirited June Lion. The robin’s egg blue stone necklace is made with turquoise from the Sleeping Beauty Mines in Arizona. http://www.sbturquoise.com/. The natural stones in her creations Chunky necklace woven from beadsare a joy to wear. See Kris Schaffer below wearing one of June’s beautiful orange pieces. June came to her arts after a long and successful career as an actor. She has appeared in films such as Jumanju, The Autumn Heart, as well as, in over 40 commercials. June has also performed at the Charles Playhouse. A delightful lady with an abundance of positive energy, you can contact her at junesjewels@verizon.net.


Interior Designer Produces Elegant Series of Oil on Canvas Paintings

Kris ShafferKris Shaffer created a series of paintings studying imaginative arrangements of books. For me it was a mini art class to hear her articulate her investigations of certain aspects of the art of painting. She discovered that by arranging books in different compositions offered her the opportunity to explore space, shadows, angles, depth, and volume. In addition, she limited her color palate by often using only the non-spine edge of the books. The Books by Kris Shaffercreation of this series was an exercise in presenting her vision while challenging her as an artist. Needless to say, I was impressed by her expression and found the paintings beautiful and organized in a very comforting manner. Kris brings her talent and vision to her work as an Interior Designer. I have seen her work, in fact, the curtains hanging in my kitchen, often so admired by friends and family, are a product of her creative vision. Contact Krist at krisshaffer@netscape.net.


Graphic Designer Expresses Himself Working with Photography and Mixed MediaMixed Media Collage by Paul Regensburg

It’s difficult to capture the highly sophisticated essence of the work of Paul Regensburg. Being a bit of a photography buff, I know enough to be dangerous. Paul is a craftsman and one with the crisp sense of precision required in the study of physics, the mother and science behind photography. Coupled with his skills and experience as a graphic designer, he produces stunning photos and collages of mixed media. Paul is also the President and Creative Director of Raincastle, a strategic marketing and interactive firm. Visit www.raincastle.com and see a beautiful example of a complex web site that communicates with a clean and concise style.

How did they find the time? Talk about living with intention. I am inspired by these people and their work and look forward to the exhibits coming up over the winter. This is just another reason why I love Newton.

Newton Open Studios Juried Craft Show

Juried by Elizabeth Geller, Head of Corporate Program, DeCordova Sculpture Park + Museum.

See 10 of those artists for a 3-week Preview Exhibit
Oct. 16 to Nov. 5 at NewTV Art Gallery

Reception, Thursday Oct. 29, 7-9 pm., at NewTV, with refreshments by Lincoln Street Coffee.
NewTV is located at 23 Needham St.
Gallery Hours: Mon-Thurs 10:30 to 9pm, Fri-Sat 10:30 to 5:30pm, Sun 12:30 to 5:30pm


National Association of Realtors Oct 23 Press Conference

At the October 23, 2009 NAR Press Conference Chief Economist Lawrence Yun discusses the existing home sales surge and comes to some interesting conclusions. He uses national statistics by 4 major regions and makes seasonal adjustments. While prices are still down, inventory is decreasing. Seems like his hope is that the tax credit will give the market the stimulus needed to push prices up.

Watch here.