Hands Across the River

The StarNews editorial on August 14th made some interesting observations about development in northeast Brunswick County and how it is affecting the City of Wilmington.

ATMC in Waterford

Residents of Waterford are encouraged to express their interest in ATMC’s fiber optic services by completing a very short survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/WaterfordNC . Your input will commit you to nothing. 

Real Estate Trends

Real estate sales statistics have been updated to include July, 2016 data. Select a neighborhood from the menu bar at the top of the Home page.

If you would like to be alerted when monthly updates have occurred, sign-up for email notification. There's a gadget at the top of the sidebar for that purpose. The only time your email address will be used is when there's something new on this blog.

Brunswick County Bond Referendum

One of the items on Brunswick County’s November election ballot will be a $152 million bond referendum to improve the county’s schools. A task force is putting on a number of events to inform voters about the projects that will be included.

Good Neighbors

Our neighbor, Lyn Herdt, lost her house and everything in it, including her two dogs. The lightning strike that destroyed her home could just as easily have hit any other house in Waterford. It woke many of us up to the dangers of living in an electrical storm prone area, and there’s been a flurry of local interest in lightning protection devices since the disaster. 

Catch and Release - Gently

I enjoy fishing.

A couple evenings a week, I fish for  largemouth bass from our dock, and I’ve hauled some nice ones out of the canal over the past few years.  Also, when we have young visitors, I like to get some worms and show them how to catch the panfish that hang out around the dock.

Opening Soon: A Publix Store in Wilmington

The Lady* is a big fan of the Publix Grocery chain. When we lived in Florida, she did most of her grocery shopping at one of their stores - with an occasional side trip to the local Harris Teeter. Beside being well laid-out and very clean, Publix stores are known for their excellent service and, most important to The Lady, their product selection and prices. She especially likes their coupon-matching policy. Needless to say, she was more than pleased to learn that “her” Publix will open their first Wilmington store on August 10th.

Waterford Fire Raises a Question

One of our Waterford neighbors lost her home on Monday. The house burned to the ground within minutes after being struck by lightning. Her pets perished, and the structure and all its contents were destroyed. Friends and neighbors are pitching in to help her get her feet back on the ground. It's been gratifying to see how the community is rallying to support her.

Could faster emergency response have saved the home and pets? In this particular case; probably not. However, this disaster does raise some questions about emergency services in our part of the county.

More Leland Police Officers

Recently, we called the police about an incident in our neighborhood. The dispatcher told us that an officer was on his way, but nobody came. After an hour or so, the assigned officer called to say he couldn’t respond because he was at the scene of a death elsewhere in Leland. Understandable, because he couldn’t have done more than document our issue anyway.

Real Estate Trends Update

Real estate sales statistics have been updated to include June, 2016 data. Select a neighborhood from the menu bar at the top of the Home page.

If you would like to be alerted when monthly updates have occurred, sign-up for email notification. There's a gadget at the top of the sidebar for that purpose. The only time your email address will be used is when there's something new on this blog.

Best & Worst Retirement Cities


A chart on the BankRate website compares 196 U.S. cities as retirement destinations. I found the list interesting. Maybe you will too.

Mason Bees - Success!

About a year ago, I wrote about my unsuccessful attempt to lure mason bees into our yard. I promised to try again - and I have. 

And I succeeded!

Early this spring, I bought a simple mason bee house on etsy.com and attached it to a post in our yard. A few days later we noticed activity and, sure enough, the first bee was depositing eggs in the house and sealing them in with mud. In the meantime, the bees have used most of the 32 pre-drilled holes, which means we should have 80-100 of the useful creatures next year.

As noted in my earlier piece, mason bees don’t sting, they are very useful pollinators, and it’s interesting to watch them do their masonry work. We’re glad to have them.

Here are links to my earlier posting, and to an information-packed article about mason bees by Judy Beaudette that I found on ecolandscaping.org. 

Maybe you'll get the bug too.

New look! New concept!

The focus of amijohn.com is now on property values and the issues that affect them in the Waterford, Magnolia Greens and Brunswick Forest neighborhoods.

Use the silver menu bar at the top of the page to navigate to one of the neighborhoods; then select a property type from the sub-menu that appears.

Statistics and graphics are updated once each month after I determine that all transactions for the month have been posted to the Brunswick County Tax Assessor’s database. The date can vary, depending on workload in the county office. 

If you want to be alerted when the monthly update has occurred, sign-up for email notification. There’s a gadget at the top of the sidebar for that purpose. The only time your email address will be used is when there’s something new on this blog.

Classy Rental Apartments Planned for Brunswick Forest


A luxury, 360 unit rental complex is in the works for The Villages at Brunswick Forest.

Grass Carp

The Waterford Board recently approved restocking our grass carp population. Then, the other day, I saw a good sized school of them in the canal behind our house. They got my curiosity going. 

Breakfast at Blossoms

This morning, The Lady and I had breakfast at the newly expanded and redecorated  restaurant at the Magnolia Greens Golf Club. Along with its new look, it has a fitting, new name, “Blossoms”. We found the new spaciousness and tasteful decor comfortable and relaxing.

Gates: I Was Wrong

If you read my blog, you already know that I'm no big fan of Waterford's gates. They are wide open during daylight hours and, even if they were always closed, a bad guy can walk around them anytime. I’ve posted several pieces that gripe about the cost and the amount of time and effort necessary to maintain them. 

Phew - Stinky Waterford !

We were cheated yesterday. The gorgeous weather made everyone want to get out into the fresh air and enjoy the mild temperatures, but someone else thought it was a great day to burn a stump. The irritating, stinking smoke made it impossible to enjoy the day.

After thinking about it overnight, I was fired-up enough to write an Email to the Leland Mayor to see if she can do something to prevent it happening again. You can read it below.

Aldi is Coming to Leland

A Port City Daily article this morning indicates that Aldi, the German grocery chain, wants to build a store between Ploof Road and the Westgate (Walmart) shopping plaza. The pre-construction planning is still going on and, from the sound of it, approval hinges only on some modifications to the site plan.