Sleigh bells ring, are you listening? In the lane, I don’t see any snow glistening. Snowflakes, I should be in the fast lane, instead of staying right except to pass. Better yet, I could keep driving west to Palm Springs and see no snow glistening anywhere.

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Winter in Palm Springs.

When I was there last month visiting Terry Johnson (a once-upon-a-time resident of Santa Fe, a topnotch sales person at Gallery 10 during his SFe tenure and a super-talented house remodeler/interior designer wherever he lands), I was surprised to see how many of my friends have relocated to the Palm Springs area. Oh, Sugar Plums, I can see you now, poised on the edge of your seats, waiting for some examples.

Okay, Terry for starters. Then we have Joe Hoffman and John Day, who moved there about 20 years ago, continuing in their long careers of selling real estate. (Their last office in Santa Fe was the former Homefield Realty with Craig Huitfeldt). Next, Charles Pearson, one of SFe’s premier landscape designers, and his partner, Thomas Starkey. They moved to Palm Springs 17 years ago to reinvent themselves. Which they did. In the process, they opened the shop, Hedge, a “must-stop design destination filled with last-century furnishings and artwork fit for every living space.” (Excerpted from Palm Springs Life.).

Chestnuts, we can’t overlook Forrest Moses (1934-2021), who moved to Santa Fe in 1969. Already a well-known landscape artist, Forrest was wowed by the southwest landscape. But, sadly, his allergies got the best of him in the City Different, so he moved fulltime to Palm Springs in 2010.

Santa Fe enthusiasts, Brent McGee and Steve Oakey, loved Santa Fe, but to their surprise and good luck, they inherited a condo in the Palm Springs area last year. Growing restless (a typical 7-year itch story), they put their SFe house on the market. Boom, it sold in 2 days — a typical Santa Fe real estate story, 2021. Now, Poinsettias, they’re celebrating this holiday season poolside under the palm trees.

Lisa Harris of Video Library

Lisa and her vast collection at The Vid.

Back at the ranch, Nutcrackers, I’m celebrating the holidays on my couch in front of the fireplace watching a treasure trove of old movies I rented from our steadfast Video Library store on my new DVD player. Excuse me, is that an oxymoron? After all, Puddings, a new DVD player is such a last-century mode of movie-watching. Nonetheless, I recently bought it for the explicit purpose of enjoying the vast library of the 2nd oldest, still-surviving video store in America. Candy Canes, I’m grateful to Lisa Harris and Casey St. Charnez, owners of The Vid, for keeping this gem alive over the last 40 years.

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Rob Thalmann (L) and his partner Chris Lucas (R) after a delicious Sunday brunch at The Grove in Albuquerque.

As I’m lounging in movie heaven, my friend and seven-days-a-week real estate pro, Chris Lucas (Owner/Broker Chris Lucas Real Estate in Albuquerque), is wrapping up his wildly successful year. Hmmm, My Wildly Successful Year, what a perfect title for a Realtor’s autobiography in 2021. According to Chris’ clients, this seven-days-a-week thing is accurate. Ginger Cookies, in addition to listing and showing property every day of the week, Chris takes the time (in his sleep?) to author and email to subscribers his MetroABQ Real Estate Newsletter. It’s filled with history, maps, photographs and fascinating facts covering the Albuquerque area and parts as far away as Las Vegas (NM). Pumpkins, I suggest you go to his website, chrislucasabq.com, and subscribe to his newsletter. Why? Because I’m quite sure that sometime soon he’ll be including interesting history, photos, maps, etc. of Santa Fe. Why? Because in a month or two, he’ll have his Santa Fe Specialist designation.

The Santa Fe Specialist Designation (SFeS) is a unique, premier Santa Fe-centric program accredited by the Santa Fe Association of Realtors. The designation requires taking more than 30 credit hours, featuring coursework in: Santa Fe History, Culture and Arts; Architecture and Governance; Water and Mineral Rights; Property Title, Land Use and Commercial Real Estate; Housing and Green Construction; and Water Conservation, Energy Efficiency and Solar. Ashley Margetson (Sotheby’s), one of more than 38 designees since the program started in 2019 and an Associate Broker since 1988, says the program is well worth it. Today she is Ashley Margetson, REALTOR, GRI, CRS, CNE, and now, SFeS. That’s right, Silver Bells. Our future designee is Chris Lucas, REALTOR, GREEN, CNE, SRES, and soon, SFeS. Angels, you’ll have to look up these initials,

It’s time for me to say goodbye. So long, Sweetpeas. As Santa Claus used to always say to me, “Merry Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight.”


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