Cambridge Summary: Inventory is at historic lows, down 50% from last November. ~ The median list price continues to be greater than 30% with days on market dropped 25 days to about 10 weeks on average before going off market. Properties going under agreement were down 12%.
Cambridge condo sales, month to date down 28% with the year to date about even being rounded up to 2% over last year’s number.The median sale price was about the same as the median list price up by 34%. ~ Multiple offers and quick sales kept the original price to sale price considerably higher than normal at 122%. ~ The average square foot price was $533 per SF with an average condo size of 1,262 SF.
Somerville Summary: November condo inventory is 42% less than last year. ~ The median list price is up by 46% with the active days on market about the same at 73 days on average. ~ Condos going under agreement were up 11% compared to a year ago.
The number of condos sold in November was down 36% from a year ago resulting in a loss of 2% in year to date sales. ~ The median sales price rose 18%. ~ Days on market dropped to less than a month on average. The original price to sale price ratio was 101% of the original list price. ~ The average square foot price was up nearly $58 at $395 per SF with a slightly smaller average living area.
“If we are not fully ourselves, truly in the present moment, we miss everything.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh
Frazzled! Doesn’t that word seem to apply to how we feel so much of the time? Take this morning for example.
I’m dashing about the flat and running late for work. I’m drinking a cup of tea while drying my hair. I have to put the washing away and hang a new load out. I mustn’t forget to feed the cat and pick up lunch before I get to the office.
Then I see him—the cat sleeping contentedly on the bed.
Once I get to work, I feel the adrenaline buzzing as the phone starts ringing and the emails begin to flood in. I’m talking to my boss about the day ahead while mentally planning the to do list I’ll write once I’ve made a cup of coffee.
Then I think of him—lying in the garden stretched out in the sun.
And as irrational as it seems, for a fleeting moment I’m jealous of my pet! But what wouldn’t I give to lead the carefree life of something that lives so blatantly in the moment.
When was the last time you noticed your cat or dog lying awake, seemingly worrying about how they could possibly manage to achieve all the tasks they had set themselves the day before?
Have you ever seen an animal try to eat and wash themselves at the same time? When we picture this, the idea seems ridiculous. So why do we so often try to do so much at once?
I’m not saying for a minute (though it does sound good) that we should hand in our notice and spend long lazy days in the garden. But perhaps we could learn a lesson from our furry friends.
Here are 5 tips for living in the moment that we can learn from our pets:
1.Pick a daily activity and spend time doing this, and only this, activity each day.
Watch as your cat or dog plays with their favorite toy. They focus all their attention on that toy and all their thoughts are of how to reach it, catch it, and enjoy it. It’s almost as if there’s nothing going on around them.
They are completely engaged in the experience, and that makes it all the more pleasurable.
It’s not always easy to focus on the small things because unlike pets, we need to provide for and take care of ourselves, and that can create stress. But that gives us even more of an incentive to disconnect and enjoy the little things. We deserve the chance to be without having to overwhelm ourselves with thoughts.
Cats naturally breathe deeply with long, slow, equal breaths (or snores!). When we hear a change in our pet’s breathing patterns we know we need to do something to protect them from what’s scaring them, cool them down, or take to take them to the vet for a check-up.
If we understand this change of breathing pattern is an important indicator of health in our pets, surely we can see that our own breathing patterns are an indicator of our well-being too.
Next time you’re watching the items pile up on your to-do list items pile up and you feel your breath shortening, take a moment to notice this. Then take longer, slower breaths letting the inhale invigorate you and the exhale calm you.
3.Dwell neither on the future nor the past.
A cat doesn’t sit around worrying about the big, scary dog she might meet the next time she leaves the house. She has good instincts and uses them when necessary—and until then, it’s not on her radar.
Too often we sit around worrying tomorrow’s work or the consequences of the things we’ve said and done, as if we can somehow predict and control the future. All this distracts us from the here and now, preventing us from living this current, precious moment.
When these worries feel they could overpower you, go back to your breathe. All you need to do is take each moment as it comes.
4.Enjoy your treats.
Give your dog or cat a treat and watch them enjoy it. Do they try to eat it while running out of the back door? Do they eat it while playing with their favorite toy or trying to dig a hole? No, of course they don’t – because it’s not enjoyable to multi-task treats. If they do, they miss out on savoring it.
So don’t watch your favorite TV show while chatting on the phone or eat a piece of cake while engrossed in your work. Give yourself the full experience of the things you love.
5.Follow your instincts.
Animals always follow their instincts. They know how to hunt, when to run from danger, and how to protect their territory without having to be trained.
By listening to their instincts, animals stay alive and healthy—something we don’t always do well as humans. We’ll ignore our hunger cues, or stay in unhealthy situations far longer than is good for us.
If your body tells you you’re hungry, eat. If your emotions feel out of control, take a break to refocus. If your mind tells you it’s time to make a change, make that change! You know a lot about what’s good for you. You just need to listen to yourself.
Next time I see the cat lounging around, lazing the day away, I’m going to look at him and remember that I too can enjoy that contentment— if I only let myself!
“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.” ~Robert Brault
Is the housing market back on track? More deals closed this September than in any September since 2005, according to real estate tracking firm The Warren Group. Foreclosures are down all over, and prices are up almost everywhere, too. Eric Berman of the Massachusetts Association of Realtors ex- plains why: “Inventory is low, interest rates are low, and the economy’s better, so we have qualified buyers. We’re moving in the right direction.” Looking at the percent increase in median sale prices between the first nine months of 2012 and 2013, you can see which neighborhoods are really heating up.
A pre-Thanksgiving Christmas tree, holiday home tours, a film fest for kids, and more.
Thursday-Sunday > November 21-24
Here’s a chance to decorate your own halls with some local art: Boston’s School of the Museum of Fine Arts holds its annual sale with thousands of works by students, faculty, and alums to choose from over four days. smfa.edu/artsale
HOMES FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Friday-Saturday > November 22-23
Portland, Maine, is launching a Holiday Home Tour this year, with five homes in the city’s historic West End opening their doors to visitors. Decked out for the season by professional designers, the homes will also feature chefs serving up baked goodies and authors signing and selling cookbooks. Tickets start at $25. 207-831-0201 or 207-229-3866; thedivineseries.com
O CHRISTMAS TREE
Saturday > November 23
Sure it’s pre-Thanksgiving, but Boston’s Faneuil Hall is ready to light up its 80-foot holiday tree — 12 days before the tree on Boston Common. The day’s events start at noon with a visit from Santa and culminate in the (televised on WBZ) lighting ceremony at 7:30. The Tanglewood Festival Chorus and a host of other acts will perform. As the tree illuminates, 350,000 other lights strung throughout the marketplace will begin to flash to the music of Holiday Pops. The tree and the BLINK! installation will be on display through January 5. faneuilhallmarketplace.com
HERE COMES THE BOOM
Saturday > November 23
It takes muscle and stamina to perform like Yamato, the Drummers of Japan do, hopping from drum to drum and never losing the beat. The lively taiko show begins at 8 p.m. at Cambridge’s Sanders Theatre. Tickets start at $28. 617-876-4275; worldmusic.org
Pictured, Yamato’s twenty drums make for one big percussion party.
Saturday-Sunday > November 23-24
For 60 years, Weston Woods has adapted tales from some of kids’ best-loved authors (Maurice Sendak, William Steig, Lois Lowry, to name a few) for the screen, and you can catch a selection of those gems at Belmont World Film’s Family Film Festival next weekend. New favorites as well as classics like Harold and the Purple Crayon and In the Night Kitchen are on the schedule. Tickets start at $5. 617-484-3980; belmontworldfilm.org
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Cambridge Summary:Inventory has gone from little to less, down 62% from a year ago. ~ The median list price jumped 37 with days on market being just about two months before going off market. Properties going under agreement remains down by 26%.
Cambridge condo sales, month to date were down 20% with the year to date losing two points, up 4% over last year’s number. The median sale price was up almost 19%.. ~ Multiple offers and quick sales kept the original price to sale price higher than normal at 103%. ~ The average square foot price was $523 per SF with an average condo size of 1.158 SF.
Somerville Summary: October condo inventory is about the same as last year. ~ The median list price rose significantly by 51% with the active days on market slightly higher at 62 days on average. ~ Condos going under agreement were up 15% compared to a year ago.
The number of condos sold in September was up 8% from a year agoresulting in a negligible loss of 0.3% in year to date sales. ~ The median sales price rose 15%. ~ Days on market were just two months on average. The original price to sale price ratio was 104% of the original list price. ~ The average square foot price was up nearly $50.00 at $399 with the living area 132 SF larger.
The wind was a challenge and rides were in doubt when Chris Mooney, Balloon Pilot arrived on Cambridge Common. About an hour later he decided to give it a try and with some concern we launched the balloon. We had an hour before sunset and managed to raise over $300 for CHAF – Cambridge Housing Assistance Fund.