11-10-2021 Holiday Gift Guide - Flipbook - Page 6
6 Wednesday, November 10, 2021
New Movers Create New Traditions
By Lisa Baldino, Contributing Writer
here do holiday traditions start? Those much-anticipated
annual activities have their origins in the home and the
community. This year may prove to be a disruption of
tradition for many people – especially those who successfully rode
the residential real estate wave and are now busy making a new
house a home.
These gift ideas contain some of the newest flavorings or ingredients or offer ways to It’s no secret that the real estate market is
still burgeoning, and people are moving to new houses every month.
Low interest rate mortgages have presented new opportunities to
buy a home, despite the limited home inventory. While real estate
agents say the momentum will continue through fourth quarter
2021, the shortage of houses is easing slightly.
“Housing inventory in Harford County is still very low, but it’s not
the mad dash for the two-day sale,” says Marty Ricci-Ehrhardt, real
estate agent with American Premiere Realty. “Baltimore County has
more inventory, but the increase in home prices makes it difficult for
first-time buyers.” Ricci-Ehrhardt says across the greater Baltimore
area, 45% of zip codes showed high demand in the housing market,
and another 17% showed a moderate demand. The demand for
townhomes and homes priced over $590,000 is increasing, accord-
ing to data from Bright MLS, the multiple listing service for Maryland.
Ehrhardt says buyers who moved to new homes this year are
starting new traditions. “People are looking for larger homes that
accommodate more gatherings of family and friends,” she notes.
“Larger kitchen spaces allow for more cooking, baking and gatherings that turn into traditions.”
Mary Lynn Bezek, interest group coordinator and past president
of the Newcomers Club in Harford County, says new movers to
the area can find social outlets and activities year-round with the
Newcomers Club, especially during the holiday season. “We provide
lots of social opportunities to make new friends. We are a great
resource for them to learn about the area and to pursue different
interests,” Bezek says. She describes 20 interest groups offered
by the club, including game night group, dining-in club, dining-out
club, helping hands group, men’s breakfast group and men’s poker
group. Many of these groups have annual traditions and holiday
activities. As a whole, the Newcomers Club also gives members an
opportunity to give back to the community by making donations to
specific charities. They carry on a tradition of giving an annual donation to the Aegis Empty Stocking Fund at holiday time.
Top Left: Barbara McCarl and Marci Keener at the Let’s Have Tea Christmas Tea. Middle: Joe and Mary Lynn Bezek at the Bel Air Winter Wonderland. Top Right: Stitch & Craft and Lunch Bunch
Christmas Brunch – Christine Hamilton, Carol Rigsby, Carolyn Warkmeister, Jeanne Conigliaro, Barbara McCarl, Barbara Pirmann, Ellen Kennedy, Anne Melamed, Diane Fewster, Anita Lewan, Betty
Karukas, Mary Lynn Bezek. Bottom left: Mark and Sheila Kuhn at the Christmas Social at Bulle Rock and Kathy Mitchell at the Christmas Pot Luck & Gift Exchange.
SOME SUCCESS TIPS AND
NEWCOMERS IN THE AREA
Ricci-Ehrhardt says she often hears homebuyers
express worry about where the tree will be located
when they are considering a home. If you’re planning a
live Christmas tree, know before you go:
• where the tree will be placed in your home
• the best places in town to get trees
• the maximum height the tree can be to fit in your
• disposal guidelines for removal of the
tree after the holidays.
If your tradition is cutting down your own live
Christmas tree, be sure to visit the tree farm’s updated
website and/or Facebook page and call before you go.
The tree market took a hit with Covid, and farms may or
may not reopen or they may have a shortage of trees.
Traditions continued on page 19