Spectacular Views! Open Tues 10a to 2p A

Spectacular Views! Open Tues 10a to 2p AND Sun 1 to 4. Come See! 232 Sandringham Dr North, Moraga http://ow.ly/jTw7i

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Gung Hay Fat Choy! The year of the Snake

Gung Hay Fat Choy! The year of the Snake starts on February 10th this year! http://ow.ly/hwUDQ The SF parade will be February 23rd. Clean your house before it starts to start the year off fresh.

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Super Easy Artichoke Dip

This dip a crowd pleaser. Every time I make it, it is gone in 10 minutes. There are only 3 ingredients:

  1. TJ Artichoke Antipasto Spread-12 oz jar
  2. TJ Marinated Artichokes (drain liquid and roughly chop)-12 oz jar
  3. TJ Swill & Gruyere blend shredded (I throw in mozzarella too)-about a 2 cups

Mix all ingredients in oven proof pan. Put in preheated 350 oven until hot and bubbly and slightly brown on top–about 20 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes. Serve with chips or spread on sliced baguette. Enjoy!

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Home Sales Starting to Swing Up. Now is

Home Sales Starting to Swing Up. Now is the time to buy. http://ow.ly/ftj6Y This is particularly true for LaMorinda home sales.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Thank you for your friendship & support. Enjoy your family & Thanksgiving!

Warmest Regards.

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LaMorinda API School Score Comparison 2010-2011 School Year


LaMorinda Public Schools consistently rank in the top 10% of California schools. Each city has its own respective school districts for grades K through 8, however, since each town only has one high school, the high schools are in a single school district (Acalanes School District) separate from the K-8 system. Learn about each city’s school system through the links in the API (Academic Performance Index) chart below.

All LaMorinda school districts were ranked highly in Forbes Magazine’s article America’s Best School Districts for Your Housing Buck in April 2011. This is why home buyers seek out LaMorinda to live in addition to its close proximity to San Francisco and easy access to BART.  For more information about LaMorinda  go to HataHomes.com

2010-2011 API School Score Comparison
API is the California Academic Performance Index. LaMorinda schools consistently rank in the top 10% of the state. Click on the links for the respective district websites. Compare Contra Costa County API scores to Alameda County API scores.

LaMorinda API School Scores 2010-2011

Lafayette K-8 Schools API Moraga K-8 Schools API Orinda K-8Schools API
Burton Valley 926 Camino Pablo 966 Del Rey 965
Happy Valley 967 Donald Rheem 976 Glorietta 969
Lafayette 943 Los Perales 961 Sleepy Hollow 984
Springhill 925 Wagner Ranch 968
Stanely Middle School 929 Joaquin Moraga Intermediate 951 Orinda Intermediate 956
Acalanes High School 911 Campolindo High School 922 Miramonte High School 944

See how LaMorinda stacks up against other top rated school districts nearby:


Walnut Creek School API School Scores

Walnut Creek Schools are divided into 2 main school districts: Walnut Creek & Mt Diablo Unified school districts. They are listed below.

Walnut Creek Grades K-8 API
Buena Vista Elem 895
Indian Valley Elem 926
Murwood Elem 883
Parkmead Elem 924
Walnut Heights Elem 946
Walnut Creek Intermediate 911
Las Lomas High School 874
Mount Diablo Grades K – 12 API
Bancroft Elementary 906
Valle Verde Elementary 947
Walnut Acres Elementary 934
Eagle Peak Montessori 914
Foothill Middle School 890
North Gate High School 860

Piedmont API School Scores & Map

Peidmont City School District API
Beach Elementary 959
Wildwood Elementary 921
Havens Elementary 959
Piedmont Middle School 943
Piedmont High School 930

Fund raising arms for each town bring in over a million dollars per town to help bridge the gap from the short fall of state funding. This is the reason why LaMorinda & Piedmont schools have been able to maintain their curriculum despite state budget cuts. Additionally, each town has a parcel tax to help fund the schools.

School Fundraising entities of each town:
EFO Education Foundation of Orinda             MEF Moraga Education Foundation
LASF Lafayette Arts & Science Foundation      PEF Piedmont Education Foundation

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Dreaming of Chickens

I’ve been thinking about getting chickens for 2 years now and dreamed of a feathered flock of chicks who laid beautiful brown, blue and speckled eggs. It would be so nice to have fresh creamy eggs daily and give the surplus to friends and family. Clients have been asking me about raising chickens at the potential purchase properties I show them.  Stumbling upon a chicken tour in Alameda, I discovered how many San Francisco East Bay neighborhoods were already raising chickens.  The thought of having chickens has even influenced my painting….the painting above is in Diablo Foods in Lafayette.

There’s plenty of info on the net on building chicken coops, what kind of chickens to get, what color eggs they lay, which chickens are “nicer” than most, feed stores and have spoken to many friends who have chickens.    Still, two years later, I don’t have chickens!  The reason is that the only logical (and physical ) place to put them would be too close to my neighbor’s bedroom window and chickens do make noise as they talk to each other. Now I can only dream of having chickens. Cluck. Cluck.

So I am posting this article to share the information  & resources I found if you are on thinking about raising chickens in or near LaMorinda (Lafayette, Moraga, Orinda).

 What kind of chickens do you want? Did you know there were so many beautiful breeds?

There are so many beautiful breeds of chickens with gorgeous colors and equally intriguing egg colors. These sites were the most comprehensive lists to help you decide which chickens are for you.

Chicken Coops

There are almost as many types of coops to choose from as there houses on the market in LaMorinda…well almost. They range from a very basic build your own to a Cape Code Deluxe  “house.”

  • Backyard Chickens  People share their chicken experiences and ask questions of others

Where Do You Get Chickens or Chicks?

Our kindergarten teacher / next door neighbor used to hatch eggs in an incubator for the children to experience the hatching. Afterwards, she would give the chickens away.  You don’t have to hatch chickens from an egg, but it is a nice way to have your children involved. After speaking to friends with chickens, it seems that they all got them as chicks and watched them grow up. Some people kept them in a box in the house or garage until they were big enough to put in a coop. A majority of the people polled  had their chickens laying eggs after 4 months, but every breed is different and also, the environment is a factor as well.  Some chickens take up to 8 months to lay their first egg. Chickens can lay an egg a day in warmer weather and in colder weather taper the egg laying to one a week or stop laying eggs all together. Most agree a happy chicken is a prolific egg laying chicken.  Be sure to not get a rooster as they can become a noise factor for you and neighbors.

  • Alamo Hay & Grain The closest place to LaMorinda pick up chicks, feed, coops, information
  • You can also order from various online sources.

I hope you find this information useful and I will keep dreaming about chickens.

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