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The Vanderveen Team

#20 - 8180 Macleod Trail S.E. Calgary, AB, Canada T2H 2B8
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September 2014

Found 7 blog entries for September 2014.

Skating in CalgaryIf you’re like me, you get a specific joy from cruising kids classes on the internet and finding the awesome and price-friendly classes for your little ones. Today, I’m going share a little Vanderveen secret: where I find all the classes in South Calgary that I use for my pile of children, and how I keep the costs down.

1)      Indus Figure Skating Club/Can Skate/Star Skate

This one is by far one of my favourites. You cannot beat the value for the dollar here. Classes range from beginning into full-fledged training for figure skaters. The drive is about 7-10 minutes from Auburn Bay depending on traffic. My daughter gets an awful lot of one-on-one coaching and costs are very low for what you get here. Click here for details.

2)      Home Depot

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Property taxesI have written on this topic before, but I just feel I need to come back to it because I hear it over and over again and sometimes I feel as if I am fighting against a tide of unrelenting strength.

Say it with me people:

"My Calgary property tax assessment means nothing"

Nothing. The true market value of your property is as clearly reflected in your most recent property tax assessment as culinary excellence is reflected in a Tim Horton’s BLT. If you’re lucky it MAY get you into the proper $100,000 period.

Your assessment was done by (what I think is a room full of monkeys on typewriters) but is probably a group of unionized city employees who crank out these numbers in a set time frame, and they did it a long time ago. They may have been in

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 September 27th, 2014 Clothing for a Cause

Drop all of your old clothes and textiles here for a good cause: the Mahogany zamboni fund!

What CAN be accepted for donation?

  • any textiles, sewing fabric
  • pairs of shoes (please, no single shoes)
  • clothing
  • comforters, gently used pillows, linens, etc
  • coats & purses
  • STUFFED ANIMALS

What CANNOT be accepted?

  • furniture
  • mattresses
  • strollers
  • toys
  • mismatched shoes
  • loose, un-bagged items

October 25 - Halloween Event

Mark your calendar - details to follow

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selling your homeI have always known that I could never list my own house and as the weeks and months have gone by leading up to D-Day, I’m more convinced than ever that I can’t do it myself. Here’s why.

House Blindness

So many homeowners think their upgrades and layout are far better and more valuable than they are. What? My giant concrete step isn’t worth the $25,000 I paid for it? Seriously, I can’t get the $5000 back for my custom built-in desk? But I special-ordered that urinal for my half bath! That was expensive!

I’m the same way, and I can admit it. What makes it even worse for me is that I know this about myself, and then proceed to undervalue everything I have, probably too much, thinking that I'm OVER-valuing, and then my evaluation is just crazy-town.

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Special Reserve Spaghetti recipeThis is a series that I love to come back to. Cooking for a small army is something I do every day, but in order to save time and make future mealtimes so much easier, I love to make, like, 20 meals at a time and freeze them. This one is a Baisi (my Italian maiden name) family secret, and here I am posting it on the internet for the public. I expect to be chased out of town very soon by burly, black-haired women, brandishing a rolling pin.

Spaghetti Sauce is something everyone does, but when Clint and I do, what we call, a spaghetti cook-off, we make something so special, that it can only be called a special reserve. When all is said and done, we have at least 24 meals (1 bag feeds 4 adults or 2 adults and 4 kids) worth of sauce to freeze in Ziploc

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Autumn events in Calgary lake communitiesWondering what to do as fall hits and your kids are far away and at school? Well, once you’ve put down your bottle of celebratory breakfast wine, here is a list of activities for you mommies in Auburn Bay, Cranston, Mahogany, McKenzie Towne, New Brighton, and Copperfield to enjoy. Most activities are free for residents and charge a nominal fee for non residents.

McKenzie Towne Book Club

2nd Wednesday of every month 7-9. Starting The Constant Gardener September 10th, 2014. McKenzie Towne Hall. More Info

McKenzie Towne Drop In Play Group

Tuesday between 12-2:30 and Wednesdays 9:30-11:30 McKenzie Towne Hall More Info

Auburn Bay Kreative Kids Playgroup

Tuesdays and Wednesdays 10:30-12:30 at the Auburn House More Info

Auburn Bay

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How to throw a block partyThis year, our street had an amazing block party. Every year that we have one, it’s always an event that is remembered and it certainly contributed to the cohesiveness of the block. Perhaps I have a bias, but I think Auburn Glen Circle is one of the tightest-knit blocks in Auburn Bay.

I think one of the ways that we got as close as we are, is because every year, some generous soul has taken time out of their day to plan a great block party in the summer. This year, that generous soul was Amanda Harrison. I asked Amanda to give me some pointers on how she pulled off the great par-tay that she did this year and with her help,

I have produced the following blog which should help more blocks around town pull off the same shindig, whether you’re in

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