Ball Homes

Fall Cleaning Checklist
We all know the concept of "Spring Cleaning"; the time of year where everyone gets organized and gives their home a deep clean as…

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June Top Producer: Mary Layton!

Everyone give our Top Producer for June a round of applause! Congratulations, Mary! Keep up the great work!



Mary has been in the business since 1981, and has practiced as a Realtor since 1994. * Broker Associate * Ball Homes Specialist in all Central Kentucky Ball Homes neighborhoods * While attending Eastern Kentucky University, Mary majored in real estate and has been actively involved in the real estate community ever since. * She is a member of the Richmond Chamber of Commerce and has been the Director of Education for the Madison County Board of Realtors. * Mary has always enjoyed residential sales, particularly relocation and new homes. She has her ABR, ALHS, CNHS, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, SFR, and SRES designations. * Mary strives to treat buyers and sellers respectfully and professionally, and to uphold the highest of ethical standards. Her personal goal is one hundred percent satisfaction.

The Best & Worst Times to...

Ever have chores that you keep pushing off because you think there has to be a better time to do it? We all have things we need to do that we keep pushing off. Here are the best and worst times to do all kinds of things around your home.

...Clean your gutters.
Best: Early spring and late fall after all the leaves have fallen. Cleaning out your gutters twice a year prevents build-up of debris which weighs down your gutters.
Worst: Early fall before the leave are done falling. It'll undo everything you just accomplished! Also avoid this chore when the ground is wet and slick. That makes it very dangerous to be on a ladder!

...Get your chimney inspected.

Best: Spring when the chimney business is slow. Since the companies are so slow during this time, they might offer some discounts. This timing will also allow you plenty of time to make any repairs before the cold returns.
Worst: Don't do this during the fall!

...Paint your house's exterior.
Best: On a dry day when the temperatures should be between 50 and 95 degrees and shouldn't drop down below freezing at night. Early summer is usually the best.
Worst: When it's about to rain, humid, or chilly. Avoid super windy days too. It makes being on a ladder a little scary!

...Buy a major appliance.

Best: September and October. These months are just before the new model releases, and the stores get eager to make room in their inventory meaning discounts for you. Also look for sales during the weekends before or after holidays.
Worst: November, December, and January. These months are right when all the new models come out, and you'll be paying full price.

...Grocery shop.
Best: For the biggest savings, hit the store the same day the ad comes out. To avoid crowds, shop Monday or Tuesday between 10am and 3 pm if you can.
Worst: Weekends are going to draw the most people and have the biggest crowds. After 6 on weeknights will be busy too when everyone's trying to rush in after work.

...Clean your oven.
Best: When you don't need to be in your kitchen for a while. The oven's self-clean cycle can take three or more hours. Make sure to do it on a day when you can have your windows open, so you can air out those funky fumes.
Worst: Before bed or when you're not home. Oven grime could get smoky or even catch on fire.

...Plant a tree.
Best: Once the ground has thawed in the spring and before your tree has sprouted all its leaves. Or early fall.
Worst: Midsummer is the worst time to plant a tree. The heat and process of transplanting can stress the tree causing it to have less energy to settle its roots into its new home.

...Reseed your lawn.
Best: Fall if you live in a cool climate and spring or summer if you live somewhere warm. Grasses grown in cooler climates need cool soil and adequate rainfall to establish their roots. In warmer areas, grasses prefer temperatures in the 70s or higher to get started.
Worst: Midsummer for cool climates because heat poses a challenge for these grasses to grow. For warmer climates, the worst time to plant is in the early fall because the grass won't have enough time to establish roots before the temperatures drop.

...Plant bulbs.
Best: Six weeks before your area's first frost date for spring-blooming plants. For summer bloomers, plant them late in spring when the chance for frost is over.
Worst: Early in the spring when cold, wet soil can cause bulbs to rot.

Let's all get started on these chores and knock out that "honey-do" list!

Lexington Burger Week

The first ever Lexington BURGER WEEK is July 6-12th! It doesn't get better than this! There are 20 restaurants participating from all over town and each one is creating a special $5 that isn't on their regular menu. The chefs are competing for the most unique burger in town. The hardest part of the whole week is going to be deciding which restaurant to visit first!

The Five Commandments of Burger Week

1. They will run out. The restaurants are going to be making A LOT of these burgers, so try to understand if they run out. There will be 19 other restaurants also serving burgers that are just as tasty that you should try next!

2. There will be waits. Be prepared to have to wait for a table. This event is going to be very popular, so try to go early or make sure to be patient with our restaurants.

3.  Tips are appreciated. $5 brings out the cheap in all of us, but really, you're getting a $10-15 burger (many restaurants go way overboard with ingredients, trying to outdo each other), so please tip at least 20%. The people who are serving you are working harder during Burger Week than at any other point in the year. A kind word will also be welcome - these people are our friends and neighbors.

4. You really should buy a drink or other food. While extra purchases are not a requirement, I think it says something good about you if you show a little love to a restaurant going above and beyond to bring you an awesome burger. Pick up some fries and a pint of Kentucky Ale. You'll enjoy yourself more.

5. Check Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Restaurants are encouraged to post their waits and remaining burgers for the day. Go to lexingtonburgerweek.com and don't forget to tag your Instagram photos and tweets with #lexburgerweek.

Now to the good stuff, the burgers!

1. The Pole Dancer from A La Lucie
Two Angus beef patties with a bourbon soaked Bellavitano and Swiss mac and cheese waffle in between, topped with applewood smoked bacon, onion ring, pickle, tomato, chopped lettuce and a Dijon mayonnaise “special sauce.” The Dancer will be served on a split-top potato bread bun and skewered. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


2. Two Drunken Burgers from Enoteca
Two red wine-soaked burger sliders covered in melted drunken goat cheese from Spain, topped with house cured pork belly, green peppers cooked in Kentucky Ale, and baby greens served on brioche buns with house aioli on the side. Best paired with: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale


3. Smokin' Beer Cheese Burger from JDI
An Angus patty topped with in-house smoked pulled pork, JDI beer cheese made with Kentucky Ale, fresh red onions; breaded and fried with lettuce, and tomato. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale

4. The Animal Club from Country Club
A Kentucky beef patty from Marksbury Farm Foods, seared with mustard bbq sauce, 2 slices American cheese, smoked onions, pickles, lettuce, Garey Farm heirloom tomato, BBQ 1000 Island, on a toasted Sunrise Bakery bun. Best paired with: Kentucky White Ale

5. Kentucky Beef Burger from Al's Bar
A beef burger blended with Bourbon butter crimini mushrooms, topped with Kenny’s Swiss cheese, house-pickled Garey Farms kale kraut and our Russian dressing. We’ll also offer a lentil patty using the same treatment for vegetarians. Best paired with: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Stout


6. Far East Bound & Down O'Round from Shamrock Bar and Grill
O’Round with a dollop of Sriracha, fire roasted green chiles, pepperjack cheese, finished with garden fresh leaf lettuce, diced red onion, and a hand breaded, Panko fried green tomato with a butter grilled bun lathered with Sriracha aioli. Best paired with: Kentucky Old Fashioned Barrel Ale


7. Best Friend Burger from Best Friend Bar
A beef patty topped with house made pimento cheese, fried green tomato, fried shallots, Sriracha mayo, tomato onion jam and fresh cilantro on a potato bun. Best paired with: Kentucky IPA

8. Five Buck Burger from Drake'sA ginormous 100% USDA beef patty with honey-jalapeno barbecue sauce, heaps of American cheese, and house fried onion straws. Best paired with: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale


9. Beef WELL-ington Burger from Smithtown Seafood
Locally sourced beef burger with mushroom duxelles, coffee stout demi-glace, crumbled Kenny’s Barren County bleu cheese, crispy buttermilk onions, roast garlic aïoli, and FoodChain mustard microgreens on a croissant. Best with: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Stout


10. Backyard Voodoo Burger from Lynagh's
A perfectly seasoned ground sirloin patty on a toasted brioche bun, topped with caramelized onions and drenched in a root beer and onion sauce so damn good it can only be called Voodoo. Best paired with: Kentucky Kolsch


11. Rising Sun Burger from Alfalfa Restaurant
A 1/4 lb Local Stone Cross Farms beef burger topped with tamari marinated grilled onions, tempura battered shiitake mushrooms, cucumber-ginger pickle and wasabi mayo on a housemade sesame bun using Weisenberger Mill flour. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


12. Thai Me Down Burger from Lexington Diner
A 1/3 lb. local Cooper Brothers burger with Thai Peanut Sauce, mushrooms, caramelized onion, smoked gouda, and Asian vegetables with a sweet jalapeno chili sauce on a Sunrise Bakery brioche bun. Lexington Diner does not serve beer.


13. Lum's Olie Burger from The Ketch Seafood Restaurant
A 6 oz. Angus chuck patty seasoned with the original Lum’s Burger Spice Mix, cooked over white oak coals, topped with provolone, Romano & Parmesan cheese and served on our house baked, toasted bun with Original Lum’s Sauce. Try it with an order of spicy Lum’s Fries. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


14. Hot Diggity Dog Beer Cheese Burger from Columbia Steakhouse
An 8 oz. burger with a chargrilled 100% beef hot dog, our artisan top-secret beer cheese and leafy green lettuce. Served on a butter-toasted sesame seed bun. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


15. Western Burger from AP Suggins
An 8 oz. burger topped with a spicy Kansas City style BBQ sauce, hickory smoked bacon, sharp cheddar cheese, a beer battered onion ring, romaine lettuce and sliced tomato on a toasted bun. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


16. Caballero Steak Burger from Coba Cocina
A steak burger with arugula, queso fresco and chimichurri. Best paired with: Kentucky Kolsch


17. West Kentucky Blue Jack Mutton Burger from Billy's BBQ
A fresh rosemary and garlic infused mutton burger with melted bleu cheese crumbles or pepperjack cheese topped with pickles, lettuce, onion and tomato on a sesame seed bun. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


18. Beaumont Bomber Burger from BRU Burger
A tri-cut blend of sirloin, chuck, and brisket topped with chorizo, white cheddar, sauteed peppers, eggs, hashbrowns, and a star anise gravy, sitting on a brioche bun. Best paired with: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Stout


19. Bite the Bulleit Burger from The Cellar
An 8 oz. burger smothered in a bourbon glaze, caramel onions, bacon and two slices of smoked gouda cheese topped with a toasted sesame seed bun. Best paired with: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale


20. Drunken Cajun Butter from Bourbon & Toulouse/CCI
A 1/4 lb. beef patty mixed with bourbon smoked garlic salt, minced onion, sharp cheddar cheese, creole spiced bread butter, Cajun power hot sauce and Sadistic Mistress homemade ketchup. Best paired with: Kentucky Ale


Now comes the hard part...what's going to be your first stop!? Visit www.lexingtonburgerweek.com for more information!

Creating A Master Bedroom Retreat

If your home is your safehaven, then your Master bedroom is your command center. It's the place where you can recharge and refresh from the busy-ness of our everyday lives. It's essential to create an atmosphere for yourself that is warm and inviting and comforting. Here's some Master bedroom ideas to transform your bedroom into a serene oasis.


Start your transformation with color. Whether you decide to paint your Master retreat, or incorporate new bedding, soothing colors like greens, soft creams, or purples create a feeling of rest and relaxation.

You spend a third of your life sleeping, so it’s important to choose a mattress, pillows and bedding that are the most comfortable for you. Bedding is also important. You have a variety of fabrics and finishes to choose from. Whatever you choose, make sure you feel most comfortable with it.

Maximize functionality by incorporating a space in your master bedroom for an elegant chaise lounge or a pair of overstuffed armchairs. Having any form of additional seating in your master creates a more dynamic sense of space where you can enjoy alone time away from the main social areas in your home and instantly creates a peaceful spot to unwind at the end of the day.


Lastly, incorporate personal touches, like family photos or keepsakes on nightstands or bookshelves. Try not to over-accessorize, but just include items that are important or sentimental to you. Banish electronics, like TVs, laptops, or cellphones to another room or hallway to keep your Master retreat a serene spot, without distractions.

How to Spruce Up Your Entryway

The entryway or foyer is your home's first impression on visitors. Make sure it's a good one. If you're looking for ways to add some life to your vestibule, here are a few suggestions to get you started.

Floors

Your entryway floors take a beating from all the traffic and weather. Make sure your flooring can take the beating by choosing the correct flooring for your home. Consider adding an area rug or runner down to combat some of the foot traffic. Keep your rugs clear of the furniture so the space has a feeling of openness. And don’t let it extend the entire length of the hallway: You want to be sure that the front door can open freely.

Walls

The easiest way to liven up your foyer is to paint the walls. Choose a color that is in the same palette as the other rooms close to it for continuity. If painting isn't in the budget, pieces of art can work wonders. Hanging artwork, mirrors or other decorations engage your visitors eyes immediately and gives your foyer the lift it was missing. Art doesn't have to be expensive either. You can use swatches of wallpaper in clean frames to create an eclectic grouping, or try ornamental mirrors as well.

Furniture

Your entryway should not only be appealing to the eye, but it should also be functional. Consider adding a few pieces of furniture, like a small dresser and chair to give your foyer a cozy feeling. Put a basket or bowl there to be a catch-all for keys or mial, but make sure it doesn't become too cluttered. A drop-zone is another great piece to add to your entryway to corrall all of the coats and shoes.