Our Town Monthly October 2022

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students took a huge burden off of families whose children are receiving treatment at by restocking our pantries with supplies." CHOA

The Ronald McDonald House Scan to watch the news video below.

PAGE 4 Our Town Each Keller Williams Realty Office is individually owned and operated JOANNIE BATES, REALTOR® KW Mega Agent / Top 10% Producer Cell: 678.788.6465 Office: 678.631.1700 joannie@joanniebatessells.com - Katie - Jordan - Kelly READY FOR WHAT’S NEXT? Let’s get started! From our very first meeting, Joannie spent lots of time answering my questions and explaining to me exactly what the process was to sell my home. Joannie’s advice and quick communication helped us quickly go under contract on the perfect house right in our budget and desired area. She’s the best! Joannie went above and beyond to help us weather the ups and downs of multiple offers, contingencies, starting over, and ending up with an even better offer. Gas LogsEtc., Inc. VISIT OUR SHOWROOM IN HIRAM! Just a short drive from West Cobb We Can Bring the Showroom to You Call for Details! Locally owned and operated since 1995 770-420-LOGS (5647) www.gaslogsetc.com Thermo-Rite Custom Glass Doors Accessories Gas LogsEtc., Inc. VISIT OUR SHOWROOM IN HIRAM! 156 Hiram Acworth Hwy (Hwy 92) Hiram, Ga. 30141 We are A+ Rated

“We’re honored that both Sterling Estates Communities have been recognized as ‘Best of Cobb’ for Retirement Living, Assisted Living and Memory Care again in 2022. I’m proud to say that it’s the 4th year in a row we’ve won these awards and an awesome tribute to our staff members. We’ve been serving seniors in greater Atlanta for over 25+ years now...we invite you to come and experience what sets us apart.”

- Marshall Gill, COO & Partner, Sterling Estates Senior Living Communities

• Large living and outdoor areas to gather with friends and loved ones

• Life enrichment center for residents to gather for art classes, lectures, games, etc.

• Certified Parkinson’s Delay the Disease Programs

• Wellness Centers & Programs On Site (Sterling Recreation Therapist and Exercise Specialist)

• Award Winning food. Spacious dining areas overlooking courtyards

Our Town
The time has never been better to join the Sterling Estates Family! 2022 Voted Again, Cobb’s Best Retirement, Assisted Living & Memory Care STERLING ESTATES Independent, Assisted Living & Memory Care SterlingEstatesWest.com SterlingEstatesEast.com WEST COBB 3105 Dallas Hwy Marietta, GA 770-255-7000 Lacey & Sherry EAST COBB 4220 Lower Roswell Rd. Marietta, GA 678-946-4454 Shelly STERLING ESTATES Senior Living Communities SAFE SOCIAL COME SEE WHAT SETS US APART!

Note from the Publisher............................8

Cover Photographer: Jennifer Mehling...............................................8

Family Football Fun in Our Own Backyard

Justin will tell you where to go in Talkin’ Sports..............................................................12

Cover Story: Welcome to Covenant Christian Academy.....15

Home Town Heroes! The heart of Independent Grounds..............21

Travel Expert

Heather Meliski, has some rules to follow when traveling during Hurricane season.................23

Health & Fitness

Tips for avoiding burnout in our “busy season” from Our Town’s health expert, Ashley Inglese................................................26

Real Estate

Deborah Ratchford, takes you step by step through the home buying process...............34

PAGE 6 Travel Hurricane Season In This Issue OCTOBER 2022
Cover Story Covenant Christian School 23 10 Talkin’ Sports Backyard Birds 21 15 Home Town Hero Independent Grounds 26 Health A Busy Life



Linda Demery & Lori McLinden

Graphics and Design

Terry Tanner

Tanner Graphics, Inc.

Account Executive

Sara Young, sara@ourtownmonthly.com

Feature Photographer

Contributing Writers

Our Town is published and direct mailed monthly to prestigious homes in the West Cobb Area. Opinions expressed by the editorial staff are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publisher. Our Town reserves the right to edit and or reject any editorial or advertising content. Our Town is not responsible for errors in advertising beyond the cost of the space or for the validity of claims made by advertisers.

Entire contents copyright 2018 by Our Town Reproduction in whole or in part is forbidden in any media without prior written permission from the publisher.

Our Town is published and direct mailed monthly to prestigious homes in Cobb County. Opinions expressed by the editorial staff are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publisher. Our Town reserves the right to edit and or reject any editorial or advertising content. Our Town is not responsible for errors in advertising beyond the cost of the space or for the validity of claims made by advertisers. Entire contents copyright 2022 by Our Town. Reproduction in whole or in part is forbidden in any media without prior written permission from the publisher.

Our Town Monthly 109 Anderson Street Suite 109 Marietta, GA 30060


Tara Hill Hanover



Fax: 678-337-7825 info@ourtownmonthly.com www.ourtownmonthly.com

Justin Hanover


Kimberly Watkins-Swenk


Jules Fandos


West Cobb Sara Young sara@ourtownmonthly.com

Smyrna/Vinings/Galleria/Cumberland Misty Flanders-White misty@ourtownmonthly.com


Jennifer Mehling


Heather Meliski

Ashley Inglese Deborah Ratchford PO Box 813610

Smyrna, GA 30081-8610 (678)337-7844

info@ourtownmonthly.com www.ourtownmonthly.com

FB: Our Town Monthly IG: @our_town_monthly Our Town PAGE 7


Feature Photographer


Jennifer is creative at heart. She loves to take photos, paint and join forc es with the Holy Spirit. She is fol lowing His guidance to have her first children’s book published, so be on the lookout for ‘Olive’s JESUS’

Jennifer grew up in a non-Chrisitan & broken home. Jesus was always with Jennifer even when she didn’t realize it. She became a BELIEVER officially in 2012. During the year the world changed in 2020 she was drawn more into the pres ence of Papa God. Once she began to be more obedient to His voice her story and childhood began to unravel. She at tended a Be Still Ministry event in North Georgia that forever changed her path. She encountered the LOVE of Jesus. Her heart began to heal and the walls came down. Jennifer is on a journey to live out the abundant life Jesus gave us ALL!

Jennifer is happily married to her best friend Ryan. She is a mother to a beauti ful little girl Olive. She is an animal lover to include dogs, cats and chickens.



Letter from the Publisher TARA HILL HANOVER Expires 10/31/22 Expires 10/31/22 Love Street Home & Garden 1275 Concord Road Smyrna 770.434.8578 @lovestreetlife lovestreetonline.com Heart & Sole Boutique 1295 Concord Road Smyrna 678.238.0130 @heartandsolesmyrna Expires 10/31/22 Our Town It’s October!!! Who is excited? pple orchards, pumpkin farms, falling leaves and the an ticipation of the holidays to come...what could be bet ter? My challenge to you and to myself this season is to celebrate everything!
is the time to enjoy the moments, wear the silly costume, eat the cake, make the memories and embrace the chaos. Choose JOY my friends! Happy Fall Y’all, A Tara
/ IG

T O G E T H E R we are more

At Whitefield, we understand the importance of community. That is why we are dedicated to bolstering Christian families in rearing young people who go on to college and life with a passion for learning, for others ahead of self, and for the living and active Jesus.

A Christ Centered College Preparatory School for PreK 12th Grade Located
Our Town PAGE 9
G e t t o k n o w u s a t w w w . w h i t e f i e l d a c a d e m y . c o m
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Our Town PAGE 11 Love Street @ Cedarcrest is NOW same location l same unique gifts, clothing & home décor l same wonderful customer service & smiling faces Stop in, shop & sign up to receive 20% off one item on your next purchase 80 Seven Hills Blvd Dallas GA 30132 l 678-483-0283 l shopindigogoods.com l info@shopindigogoods.com

The college football season is heating up as the Georgia Bulldogs are looking to win back-to-back FBS National titles. Certainly, Alabama and Ohio State, among a few others will attempt to have something to say about that. But did you know that if you don’t want to travel all the way to Athens to see the ‘Dawgs, and still want to see some quality football, you can do so right here in our own backyard?

That’s right, the Kennesaw State Owls, a perennial top 25 program in the FCS of Division One play here in Kennesaw at the beautiful Fifth Third Bank Stadium, right off of I-75 on George Busbee Parkway.

I have been the PA Announcer for Atlanta United 2 at this very same stadium and can tell you it is an absolute gem. There is nothing better than going inside this venue on a beautiful day as it is small enough to be considered quaint, yet big enough to have some rocking vibes.

The Owls have only had a football program since 2015 but have already earned three Conference Championships and have played in a pair of Na tional Quarterfinals. Brian Bohanon, who has been the only head coach the program has ever, has led this team to an amazing 63-20 record (as of press time) and 28-8 conference mark, after serving as an Assistant Coach for years under former Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson.

Bohannon’s boys went 11-2 a season ago and a perfect 6-0 in conference in 2021 as they finished ranked 10th overall in the nation.

KSU has also now played four FBS opponents after tangling with Atlan ta Falcons’ Quarterback Desmond Ritter’s alma mater, the University of Cincinnati earlier in the season. So don’t accuse them of beefing up that record with some cupcakes.

As of press time, the Owls were ranked 18th in the nation. The mark gives KSU its 61st consecutive week in the top 25 poll, dating back to Oct. 30 of the 2017 season. This streak also spans 1,771 days with the Owls entering the last 52 games as a ranked program. Since its inception as a program, 96 weeks of national FCS top 25 polls have been released and the Owls have been fea tured in over 63 percent of them.

Here is how my good friend and orig inal play-by-play voice of the Owls, Brian Katrek, sums things up. “The game day experience at KSU is amaz ing. There isn’t a bad seat in the house


and the food is great! Coach Bohanon has been the perfect leader for our program and they will make another post season run this year.”

They may not get the pub of the Bulldogs or the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets or some other programs but Kennesaw State is a quality and en tertaining program that is a good time for all. The Owls boast a lot of for mer Georgia high school players and play at home four times in October. Come support local and have an incredible time in the process!

Justin Hanover is a sports reporter/analyst who has worked in the business since 1996. His stops have included ESPN, CNN, 790 The Zone, 680 The Fan and the Atlanta Falcons. He has also done play-by-play analysis and color commentary ranging from the high school level all the way through the professional level. Justin lives in Smyrna with his wife and three children.

Talkin’ SportsTalkin’ Sports 1 S T C L A S S S O C I A L G A M I N G V E N U E F O R G R O U P S U P T O 2 0 , F O O D A N D D R I N K I N C L U D E D ! S C A N T H I S C O D E W I T H Y O U R P H O N E T O L E A R N M O R E ! V I D E VO I D E VO I D E O G A M I N GG A M I N GG A M I N G B I R T H D A BY I R T H D A BY I R T H D A Y P A R T I E S P! A R T I E S P! A R T I E S ! 2 7 9 0 C U M B E R L A N D B L V D S E , S M Y R N A G A 3 0 0 8 0 W W W . C O N T E N D E R C U M B E R L A N D . C O M
• Diabetic Foot care • pediatric foot care • sports injuries • reconstructive foot surgery Dr. Mike Laur 4450 Calibre Crossing NW Suite 1130 Acworth, GA 30101 770.771.6991 www.vpcenters.com 770.805.9977 4500 W. Village Place / Suite 1011 / Smyrna NEW EARLY HOURS OPEN Mon-Fri 7am - 7pm Sat 10am - 4pm Sun 12pm - 6pm DOMINION Christian School Love God and love others through Christ-centered education. s College preparatory s Dual Enrollment Program s Family Atmosphere s Full Athletic Program NOW ENROLLING FOR 2022-2023 4607 Burnt Hickory Road Marietta, GA 30064 l dominionchristian.org l 770-420-2153 Call us today to schedule your personal campus tour! 770.420.2153 2022-2023 INVESTMENT MIDDLE SCHOOL (6-8) $9,500 HIGH SCHOOL (9-12) $10,500
PAGE 14 Our Town We provide the highest quality, comprehensive dental care with the utmost comfort. l Accepting new patients of all ages l General and implant dentistry l Advanced cosmetics and imaging l Complimentary laughing gas for all appointmentsDimple Patel, DMD Radha Patel, DMD 3475 Dallas Hwy. SW, Suite 310 Marietta, GA 30064 770.425.2001 LeadingEdgeDentistry.com $89 New Patient Special (includes complete exam and X-rays) $290 value, does not include a cleaning, restrictions apply Serving Cobb Co for 13 Years! Register at: https://tinyurl.com/2022spooktacularchase 8K/5K OCTOBER 22 ND Benefiting Vision Rehabilitation Services of Georgia 501c(3) helping the visually impaired https://vrsga.org USATF Certified Course AJC Peachtree Qualifier Each Registration Includes: l Free Brunch with Bib ($5 for all others) l Spooktacular Chase T-shirt l Finisher Medal l Your personal fundraising page Awards for: l Largest team of 10+ l Most funds raised by an individual l Most funds raised by a team 8K/5K OCTOBER 22 ND

Covenant Christian School, a ministry of Smyrna Presbyterian Church, sits on Atlanta Road, at the edge of a major cultural center – hardly a desert. However, when it comes to educating children, there are deserts all around that need irrigation.

Yet, here in little old Smyrna – a community that has morphed into a nexus of sports, business, and entertainment – students are connected to a pipeline of learning that keeps feeding them all their lives. Covenant Christian School is a classical school, one devoted not just to facts and figures, but to the pursuits of beauty, truth, and goodness – the very stuff our kids are thirsty for, even while they gorge themselves on social media and video games. Instead of parking in front of screens, the students here learn grammar rules, math facts, and history timelines. They read fables, ancient myths, and chapter books about farm animals, medieval knights, and Holocaust survivors. They even learn Latin!

Covenant Christian School is part of an educational movement that began about forty years ago, when a group of concerned parents and educators decided to dodge the ever-changing whims of progressive education and return to a time-tested methodology called classical education. The clas sical model has existed for centuries; in fact, nearly all schools practiced it until about 1900. Ancient and medieval educators observed that children naturally move through phases as they grow. It’s how God made us! Clas sical educators have names for these stages of development: grammar, logic, and rhetoric.

When children are in the grammar stage – between six and twelve – they are like sponges. They memorize quickly and love to move and sing. Classical education makes the best use of their talents by feeding them lots to memorize. Often, the information is set to music and movement, so facts stick in their brains like commercial jingles on television. This base of knowledge gives children something to build on in the future. So, at Covenant Christian School, our youngest students learn their mul tiplication tables, parts of speech, and history facts in a rhythmic, musical way they enjoy.

As students become adolescents, they enter the logic phase. They grow more argumentative, questioning adults at every turn. Classical education takes advantage of their tendency to question by offering logic courses, showing students what good arguments sound like. Our students learn to order their thoughts in their essays and science projects. This training prepares them for the rhetoric stage in high school, when they are mature enough to blend facts and figures with their logic skills to express what they know.

Deserts need water, and Covenant Christian School is an oasis. In the New Testament, Jesus promised living water to the woman at the well – water that offers eternal life. Using Jesus as our model, the teachers at Covenant Christian School offer an education that serves children for a lifetime.

C.S. Lewis, author of The Chronicles of Narnia, famously wrote, “The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles, but to irrigate deserts.”
www.ccssmyrna.org 3130 Atlanta Rd, Smyrna, GA 30080 770.435.1596
PAGE 16 Our Town Protecting Your Core Business Creations™ Protecting Your Core Business Creations™ Regardless of industry, true legal ownership of your business’s name, logos, taglines and creative works is critical to your business’s brand recognition and longevity. Let the Gervin Frazier Law Firm, LLC’s client-centered trademark and copyright services give your business the intellectual property peace of mind it needs. Georgia Barred, Atlanta based. Full U.S and Worldwide Trademark and Copyright Registration Reach. Delia Gervin Frazier, Esq. Principal Trademark & Copyright Attorney (404) 445-3446 www.dgfrazierlaw.com Delia@dgfrazierlaw.com @TrademarkandCopyrightLawyer

Welcome Home...

...to DayBreak Village, your warm and friendly home nestled in the heart of historic Kennesaw. DayBreak Village provides our residents with the lifestyle they want, services they deserve and care they need!

Schedule your tour today, call 770-218-6166 3056 Cherokee Street • Kennesaw, GA 30144 www.daybreakvillage.com

your next chapter of wonderful

Our Town PAGE 17
PAGE 18 Our Town ON SALE NOW • OCT 21 – 23 • FoxTheatre.org
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PAGE 20 Our Town

ctober is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Ap proximately 80 percent of adults with Intellectual and/or Devel opmental Disabilities are either unemployed or underemployed. And yet they represent a large population of adults who want to work but are too often overlooked in the traditional interviewing process. Inde pendent Grounds Cafe is one of many local businesses who are working to change those odds.

Independent Grounds Cafe was started by Lorna Heid, a single mother of two daughters, one of whom has a traumatic brain injury. As her daugh ter, Emma, neared high school graduation, Lorna began looking at the opportunities available for her daughter to obtain meaningful work. Not finding a lot of great options available, she decided to create her own. She knew her daughter and her peers already had experience working in a coffee shop through their special education high school programs and an idea was formed to create a similar atmosphere on a greater scale.

The onset of the COVID pandemic caused Lorna’s first ventures into the coffee business to close, but as 2021 approached, she knew she want ed to try again this time in a better-suited location, namely close to the Kennesaw State University campus and in a newly constructed housing development focused on college students.

To date, Lorna has employed more than a dozen employees with spe cial needs, many of whom have gone on to find employment at other like-minded businesses who see the value in this loyal workforce.

Lorna gives all of her employees the opportunity to shine and show their personalities through their work.

Drew, the (sometimes sassy) morning cashier, has a great attitude and an online presence in many of the shop’s videos.

He proudly greets all customers as they enter the shop with his signature phrase: “Welcome to Independent Grounds Cafe can I take your order?”

Andre, one of her loyal baristas, de livers drinks with a smile and win ning attitude.

Emma, the star of the shop, loves to show off her smoothie and frappe showstoppers with a smile and a giggle.

Examples of developmental disabil ities include autism, behavior dis orders, brain injury, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, intellectual disabil ity, and spina bifida.

Independent Grounds is open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. They are located at 3061 George Busbee Parkway, Suite 2000, Kennesaw, GA, 30144.

They can be found at their website, www.independentgroundscafe.com and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tiktok.

O Home Town Hero 3900 Legacy Park Blvd NW, Suite A100, Kennesaw, GA // 678.695.7132
PAGE 22 Our Town BEAUX ARTS HOME WEST 2960 Olympic Industrial Dr. SE Atlanta, GA 30339 678.882.1362 NEW WAREHOUSE NOW OPEN FRIDAY + SATURDAY ONLY 10AM - 6PM I-285 S.ATLANTARD OLYMPIC IND DR CHURCH ST. / PLANT ATKINSON RD Just of off S.Atlanta Road, inside I-285, Facing Builder’s SurplusDESIGNER BRANDS 40-80% OFF! FURNITURE LIGHTING ART ACCENTS RUGS

Tips for Traveling During Hurricane Season

As I’m writing this article, Hurricane Fiona is bearing down on Puerto Rico. I typically keep an eye on tropical storms and hurricanes throughout hurricane season because I constantly have clients traveling to the Caribbean and Mexico. But I am paying extra attention to this one because I have clients porting in Puerto Rico next week during their cruise and my family is supposed to leave in a week for our fall break vacation in San Juan.

Hurricane season in the Caribbean runs from May 1 – November 30. Here are some tips for how to prepare for travel that may be impacted by the season.

Buy Travel Insurance! - I never travel outside of the US without it, and 99% of my clients don’t either. I recommend it not for lost baggage or trip can cellations, but for medical coverage and emergency evacuation coverage (which would also apply to hurricanes). If you’re on an island without power, flights, and basic supplies, paying a few hundred dollars for travel insurance means not paying tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars to get home.

Have a Back-up Plan – when I heard that Hurricane Fiona could impact my family’s trip to Puerto Rico, I immediately went into ‘travel advisor mode’ and had plans B, C, and D figured out within a few hours. It’s still TBD which one will be our final choice, but having options figured out in advance means that we will be going somewhere fun instead of being stuck at home.

Allow for a Travel Time Buffer – if you need to be home for an important event, allow for buffer time with your travel dates. Having a flight back to the US the day before your child’s high school graduation isn’t the best idea because if there is a travel delay due to a hurricane or tropical storm, you may miss it entirely and you may not have power or cellular coverage to be able to watch remotely (true story from last year).

Be Flexible – be okay with possibly altering your plans, often at the last minute. Activities may need to be moved or cancelled, your trip may be shortened or extended, or you may have to change travel plans to a completely different destination. Going into your planning knowing that things may change will help ease the disappointment if they do.

Take Extras – always travel with extra medications and medical supplies, as well as a few extra items of clothing in case your travel plans are delayed.

Enroll in STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program) with the State Depart ment before International Travel - this lets them know when you’ll be outside of the country, where you will be staying, who your emergency contact is, etc. so if there is an emergency, they will know to contact you.

Charge Your Devices – if a hurricane or tropical storm is headed your way, make sure to immediately charge all of your devices. I also recommend traveling with a portable power bank which can charge your devices if you are without power.

Keep In Touch – call or text family and friends often as the storm is approach ing and as you can during and after landfall. This lets them know you’re okay and, if needed, gives them the information they need to work with your travel advisor, airline, or the state department.

Book with a Travel Advisor – this one probably goes without saying, but book ing with a travel advisor is incredibly beneficial if a tropical storm or hur ricane hits. We will assist with rescheduling your vacation or extending your stay, and we have the expertise and connec tions to help get you home faster.

Make sure to read next month’s article to find out where we ended up for fall break!

Heather Meliski is a travel agent specializing in the Caribbean, Hawaii, Mexico, Europe, Australia, the South Pacific, cruises, theme parks, and more. She lives in Smyrna with her husband two sons. Heather@yellowshoetravel.com FB @ heatheryellowshoetravel IG @yellowshoetravelheather

Our Town PAGE 23
PAGE 24 Our Town Helping families plan for the future and protect their loved ones. 1690 Stone Village Ln., Ste. 322, Kennesaw, GA 30152 Estate Planning l Probate Elder Law l Small Business Contact Erika Today 678.383.7857 info@orcuttlawoffices.com
Our Town PAGE 25

Strive for a Healthy Pace

The holidays are coming and that means that we are entering the “busy season”. Just kidding, if you’re like me it’s ALWAYS the busy season. We keep waiting for “things to slow down” only to realize that they aren’t slowing down anytime soon, thus we need to adapt and adjust.

Adapting and adjusting refers to your day-to-day schedule but it also re fers to your mentality. How are you handling your acceptance and out look on your day?

Find joy! For me personally, I’ve found myself with a daily commute. As much as I typically don’t enjoy time in the car, I can control my outlook. I use that time to catch up on the phone, find an entertaining podcast or book, or hear all about my kids’ day while we travel to school or practice. I have to find a way to make it enjoyable because I refuse to be miserable.

Multi-tasking! My kids have practice just about every night and you will usually see me walking during this time. I love watching my kids play but I also love showing them that I value my physical activity too. It’s a great way to get a workout in or even walk with another friend who is at the park too.

The risk we take by not adapting to being busy is burnout. Of course, we can say no to things, delegate, and take things off of our plates but it’s also okay to enjoy all of the madness (for the most part).

The burnout is real! Here are some tips for combating burnout:

1. Take a step back! I know that sounds impossible when you have so many things to do, but sometimes stepping away from that project will reset your mind, give you a new perspective, or recharge your battery.

2. Do something fun! That lunch break with a friend or weekend getaway may feel like procrastination but it also may give you the opportunity to have an inspiring conversation or experience leading to more productivity.

3. Recharge! Resting and recharging are two different things. Resting is important but when combating burnout you need to recharge! Recharg ing is different for everyone but mainly it’s that thing you love to do that leaves you feeling energized and content. It may be paddleboarding, hiking, cooking, volunteering, or whatever it is at your core that brings you joy. Do more of that! It will make you more productive, creative, inspired, and fulfilled in the end.

4. Find a finish line! Is it a project at work or a busy sports season? When does it wrap up? Enjoy the process but also look for the finish line.

5. Set a goal! A trip, a dinner, a few weeks of nothing; whatever it is, find something to look forward to but most of all, find joy in the process.

Ashley Inglese is a Smyrna resident. She is a wife and mother of 2 human kids {Lila, 11 & Leo, 8} and 2 rescue fur babies {Maple, chiweenie & Hazel, tabby}. Ashley owns HOTWORX Smyrna, and co-owner of HOTWORX Marietta Square. She is very involved in the community and loves supporting local schools, events, and nonprofit organizations.

PAGE 26 Our Town
Our Town PAGE 27 Home is where the heart is at Dogwood Forest Acworth Assisted Living & Memory Care and so is the CARE. We love our residents like family and you can visit our website and hear from family members why they love us, too. WE OFFER: • Short Term Stays • Studio & 1BR Apartments • On-site Rehab • Robust Activities & Programs • 3 Miles from Local Hospitals • Pastoral Chaplain as we are a Faith-based Company Call Mandy McQuay today for more information at: 678-628-9274 | www.dogwoodforest.com 4461 South Main St. l Acworth, GA 30101
PAGE 30 Our Town
Our Town PAGE 31Our Town PAGE 31 678-401-4473 www.FiveStarChimneyandhvac.com • Chimney Sweep & Inspection • Relining & New Liners • Gas Logs Installs and Repairs • Rain Caps • Water Leaks • Chase Pan & Shrouds HEATING & AIR SERVICE • Service • Repairs • Installs LIKE US! Cozy Nights are Ahead of Us! IS YOUR FIREPLACE READY? Down your Chimney in to your Heating and Cooling - We do it All! FREE QUOTES l FINANCING AVAILABLE l HABLA ESPANOL Chimney Inspection $199 Regularly $249 Expires 10/31/22 Chimney Cleaning & Inspection $250 Regularly $299 Expires 10/31/22 Camera Chimney Inspection $350 Regularly $399 Expires 10/31/22 Fall Maintenance (Heating System) $8999 $7999 each addtional Expires 10/31/22 $250 OFF Any New HVAC Install Expires 10/31/22 Falling in love with new PAINT colors? Residential & Commercial Pickup Services Atlanta Paint Disposal.com (404) 333 8763 AtlantaPaintDisposal com Find more details at: Recycle last year's paint cans!
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Our Town PAGE 33 Your Local Garden Center l Wild Bird Supply $5 OFF Purchase of $25 or More EX 10-31-22 NEW TEMPORARY ADDRESS! (Next to Rev Coffee) 2938 Jonquil Drive l Smyrna Ga 30080 678-653-8838 l neighborsfeedandseed.com



There are many aspects about the home hunting process that can be exciting, but there’s nothing quite as exciting as when the seller accepts your offer. Maybe you were in a bidding war or maybe you were the first offer. Regardless of your journey, it definitely doesn’t end here. When the seller accepts your offer there are a few more steps you need to get ready for.

Understanding Earnest Money

are now under contract

Home Inspection and Appraisal

When your offer is accepted you will be asked to put down earnest money. Earnest money is a show of good faith from the buyer and depending on where you live it can range from 1-3% of the offer. Make sure to talk to your real estate agent and learn the conditions of the earnest money. Some contracts allow for the home buyer to get the money back if the deal falls through, but it depends on the circumstances of the situation.

Apply For Your Loan

While your loan company may have given you preapproval, you can only apply for the loan after the binding agreement has been signed by both parties. Loan companies may have different rates and options, so make sure you meet with a few lenders. It’s important to take the time and ana lyze the costs- can you afford the monthly payments on top of the utilities and the possible HOA? Taking the time to check your finances now will save you major headaches in the future.

If you are using a loan to purchase the house, your lender will require a home appraisal. The appraiser will price the home according to its features, condition, and recent sales in the area. The outcome of the appraisal may change how much the lender is willing to loan, which can lead to either rene gotiation of the home price or even the end of the deal. The next important step is to invest the money in ordering a home inspection. The home inspector’s job is to inform you if there are any damages in the home and to provide estimat ed costs to fix these issues. This step will give you a better understanding of the home’s condition and may help you and your real estate agent negotiate a lower cost of the home.

Homeowners Insurance

Homes are the biggest investments people make so it’s important to protect your investment with the right type of home insurance. Some insurance policies can cover AC systems, freezing, floods, fire, and more. Make sure to take the time to look into the policies and find one that best matches your concerns.

Final Walk-through

The final walkthrough is a process that happens two days before your closing date. This is the time to see if there are any new damages, and the agreed conditions of the home are in order. Now is the time to address any new concerns because after you sign the deal in two days all home is sues will be your responsibility. This is also an important time to contact the proper resources and ensure that utilities will be turned on, starting the day of closing.

The day is finally here, so make sure to bring all required documents to ensure a seamless settlement. You’ll need to bring the funds for the home and possibly two forms of government-issued identification to complete the process. This is the time where closing costs will be paid, the agreement with the lender will be paid, and the most exciting partyou will get the keys to your brand new home.

While this list may seem a bit daunting, your real estate agent will be by your side the entire time to guide you. They are a valu able source of information, so remember to ask questions. Staying on top of each step will reduce stress and possible hiccups, and you’ll find yourself a homeowner in no time!

678-570-4779 / Debratchford@kw.com

Paulding, Bartow & Douglas Counties Vicky Bates-Owner
PAGE 34 Our Town
Serving Cobb, Cherokee,
770-427-4448 MaidinAmericaGa.com
buying a home
Deborah M Ratchford Keller Williams Cityside 3350 Atlanta Road Smyrna, GA 30080 C: 678-570-4779 O: 770-874-6205 Again! it DebDidI Want To Sell Your Home Today! Deb is Results Driven! SOLD IN SMYRNA! 15k Above Asking Price! Looking for Listings and Buyers! Call Today! 678-570-4779 barry.butler@rate.com / O 404.474.3974 C 770.365.7179 125 Townpark Drive Suite 300, Office 23 / Kennesaw, GA. 30144 Barry Butler Branch Manager/VP of Mortgage Lending NMLS ID: 658820 All information is believed to be accurate, but not warranted. Each Keller Williams Realty Office is individually owned and operated. www.guaranteedrate.com/barrybutler JUST SOLD IN MABLETON! Above Asking Price! SOLD IN SMYRNA! 30k Above Asking Price! JUST SOLD IN SMYRNA! 18k Above Asking Price! UNDER CONTRACT! In Smyrna in Just 2 Days! UNDER CONTRACT! In Mableton in Just 3 Days! Call the agent that knows the market and how to get over the asking price. Results Driven!!! Call today for your FREE market analysis.
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