Page 1

















A Great Fit


november//december 2013 NHOME /



/ NHOME november//december 2013

november//december 2013 NHOME /






/ NHOME november//december 2013


november // december 2013 texas nhome magazine


functional design California Closets

With 31 years of serving South and Central Texas under its belt, this full-service industry leader continues to provide stellar custom solutions for maximizing your space.

features 34 profile

Jennifer Shemwell This all-star realtor lives by the Golden Rule passed down to her by her mother and uses her million-dollar smile to sell luxury real estate at the Phyllis Browning Company.

52 industry insights

Voices of the Professionals Some of the finest in San Antonio real estate help us make the season merry and bright by providing some of their favorite suggestions for decorating for the holidays.

72 community inspiration Operation Appreciation

In partnership with Operation Finally Home, H-E-B gifts deserving military families with new, mortgage-free homes, supporting and saluting our wounded warriors.

76 community inspiration Don and Leslie Powers

In a true inspirational story of paying it forward, Don and Leslie Powers go from small-town country to country elegance with the help of LLB Interiors and the rest of the stellar team behind their beautiful new home. november//december 2013 NHOME /


in this issue

10 A Note From the Publisher 14 Contributors 16 Advisory Board 90 Letters to the Publisher

Dine 22 Season's Eatings

Functional Design 26 A Great Investment 30 Reach for the Stars 32 Holiday Designs by Interior Designer Lara Hart

nhome staff

Outdoors 44 A Man for All Seasons

Green 54 Holiday Greenings

Lender Profile 58 Man on a Mission


editorial director

executive editor

Kelly Hamilton

Erin O’Brien

creative director

senior graphic designer

60 Leaving a Legacy 62 Dollars and 'Sense'

Arts & Culture 64 Fine Art for the Holidays

Great Escapes 68 Holidays on the River Walk

Active Adult Living 70 Holidays at The Towers

Events 80 Making Dreams Come True 82 Business and Pleasure 84 The PT50 Realtors White Party 86 On the Move 88 The Holidays Across Texas

Elisa Giordano

Cristina Villa Hazar


NHOME Texas would like to acknowledge that the home that appears on pages 22 and 23 of our September/October 2013 issue was built by CKC Custom Homes. We neglected to credit the company, and we apologize for the oversight.



Miriam Guajardo Resendez

Chloe Gil

Bask in the glow of perfection.


and get a whole new definition of lifestyle.

Call 888-66-RANCH or visit

This is living. Pure and simple.

H 8,700 acre gated, resort-style community H Large spacious and private homesites from the low $100s to $500s + H Custom homes and lock-and-leave villas from the $500s H Clubs of Cordillera Ranch with Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course* H Located in Boerne, Texas — the heart of the Texas Hill Country H Minutes from San Antonio shopping and entertainment H Underground utilities including GVTC fiber-optics * Requires membership contract and initiation deposit.

november//december 2013 NHOME /


Our blacksmith artisans carefully hand-forge every scroll from iron the old fashioned way.

Where Iron Becomes Art

Highest Quality at the Lowest Price-Guaranteed Hand Forged Wrought Iron Doors ✤ Custom Staircase Railing Balconies ✤ Wine Cellars ✤ Gates and Fences ✤ Ornamental Iron

Call Today for Your Free Estimate & Free Design



/ NHOME november//december 2013

8666 Huebner Rd. Ste 106 San Antonio, TX 78240

on the

photo by jason roberts


California Closets of the Texas Hill Country specializes in fully custom storage and furniture pieces for all home and commercial spaces. We are a full-service firm offering professional design and installation with a lifetime warranty. Our expertise includes not only closets, but also pantries, offices, craft rooms, mudrooms, media centers, libraries, wall beds and more. Locally owned by Daniel and Jill Siegel, we have proudly served San Antonio, Austin, Corpus Christi and beyond since 1983. Our talented and dedicated team of 34 has a passion for quality and service, and we proudly manufacture locally, using only the finest materials and suppliers available. Our promise is to bring you the most well-designed, efficient, durable, stressfree and wonderfully perfect home solutions available.

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// a note from the publisher //


ne of the greatest things about this time of year is that almost everyone shares the spirit of giving back to those less fortunate. That’s partly why this is my favorite time of year. It is a blessing to be in a position to give back to your community. NHOME has had a busy, productive and blessed year. Thank you for the continued support of our advertisers, board members, business partners, readers and friends. We have worked hard and made new friends, and we have had a lot of fun in our second year of producing what we hope has been enjoyable for our readers and effective for our advertisers. We have received some wonderful feedback from readers, so in celebration of our second anniversary, we share a few of those notes and letters of support. One of our valued clients, California Closets, proud member of: graces the cover, showcasing how they can simplify, organize and create more space in ways we could never imagine. They offer amazing and versatile designs. You must visit one of their showrooms in San Antonio or Austin. Also in this issue a profile featuring Jennifer Shemwell of Phyllis Browning; our mortgage lender profile featuring Easton Crafts of Directions Equity Home Loan; and a feature on Tommy Bonner of Mile High Yard Works, where you will read about how an entrepreneur developed his passion into a business. We also feature The Towers on Park Lane, which I think is one of the city’s best active adult living facilities. This issue offers several ideas and tips for holiday dining and decorating, as well. We promote clients who are giving back to make a difference. Be sure to read the heartwarming article about how H-E-B supports our wounded warriors by helping them get new homes. We also share the story of how Lara Hart of LLB Interiors decorated the home of Don and Leslie Powers, a couple with a beautiful spirit who have decided to impact the lives of others by supporting and encouraging others to become part of Operation Christmas Child and Samaritan’s Purse. We would love to know how you have chosen to make a difference this holiday season, so please take the time to email us and share! We also still accept letters the old-fashioned way, so you can send us a letter or a note in the mail if you prefer. As you wind down for the year, remember to take some time out for you and your family and friends. Focus on what matters most by asking, “Whose life did you touch this year?”

Adaku Okoro, publisher



























































THE STORY within the WALLS









Splendidly Luxurious


{ Staycations{ TEXAS-STYLE


/ NHOME november//december 2013



A Timelessly Texan Builder




{ AT HOME WITH Sean and Claudia Elliott }




{ NEW YEAR, NEW HOUSING MARKET? Predictions for San Antonio }












{ FIRING UP THE GRILL WITH Chef Jaime Martinez }


The Broadway

An Extra Touch of Elegance
























LONE STAR LUXURY great getaways for spring break 2013










right at home




The Ultimate Experience


accessible luxury

FALL 2011



the homes of the future

MAY//JUNE 2013


and More of the City’s Extraordinary Condos, Lofts and Apartments

{ SUSTAINABLE LUXURY Green Multi-Family Housing }


of Distinction


Featuring Mike Hollaway Custom Homes and The Dominion




november//december 2013 NHOME /


Give Your Home a Giſt for the Holidays

NH ME texas

november // december 2013

ceo/nside media productions Eliot Garza


Adaku Okoro

editorial director Kelly Hamilton

executive editor Erin O’Brien

creative director Elisa Giordano

senior graphic designer Cristina Villa Hazar

Spice up the season with new home enhancements from Parrish. Drop by and see our latest displays, and ask our designers for creative, innovative ideas that best suit your lifestyle. Our inspirational showrooms and unsurpassed service are two of the reasons Parrish has been a trusted resource for homeowners for more than 40 years. Happy Holidays from our family to yours!

contributing writers Ashley Bradford Angela Clack Easton Crafts Gabriel Diego Delgado Sonya Edmondson Georgeff Jen Gherardi Chloe Gil Rita Zenzen Heck Margaux Huckabay Christian Reed-Ogba Linda Rudd Allyson Seipp Kim Young

contributing photographers Robin Jerstad Jason Roberts Manuel Serrata


Chloe Gil Miriam Guajardo Resendez

editorial intern Katrina Torres Appliances | BBQ Grills | Cabinetry | Countertops Fireplaces | Garage Doors | Outdoor Kitchens | Windows

For advertising information, please call 210.568.9688 or email For editorial comments and suggestions, please email

830-980-9595 26995 HWY 281 N. San Antonio, TX 78260

210-255-1125 2500 N. Main Ave. San Antonio, TX 78212


Showrooms also in Round Rock and La Feria

/ NHOME november//december 2013

to reach us: 18402 U.S. Highway 281 N, Ste. 201 San Antonio, Texas 78259 Phone: 210.568.9688 Fax: 210.568.6630 Copyright © by NSIDE Media Productions. All rights reserved. Reproduction without the expressed written permission of the publisher is prohibited.

Linda L. Rudd, CFP® - Your Lending Team Senior Loan Officer & Vice President

O: 210.999.5935 | | M: 210.508.2853 NMLS#219069

Purchase and Refinance Service Throughout Texas

“We appreciated the communication and immediate response. From beginning to end, everything was smooth transitions!” - Andrew and Jamie R.

“Their professionalism and knowledge” - Impressed Richard and Janet M.

“Courtesy-ProfessionalismAccessibility-Responsiveness” - Pleased Dan B. and Sheila M.

“Everything went smooth.” - Emily L. and Michelle M.

Now is the time ... This is Your Team

| A Division of CroCkett nAtionAl BAnk | 3503 PAesAnos Pkwy, sAn Antonio, tX 78231 november//december 2013 NHOME /


// contributors //

kim young

Kim Young, a native Texan, is a broker/associate with BH&G RE Bradfield Properties who has been assisting luxury buyers and sellers in the San Antonio and Hill Country areas since 1999. She is a third-year recipient of the coveted Five Star Professional Award for customer service and a past recipient of the Platinum Top 50 award. She is a mother of four, including twin daughters who recently turned 21. In addition to her real estate career, she is an author and co-author of the Creating Machine series, and she writes for various publications and websites.

easton crafts

Easton Crafts is the CEO of Directions Equity, LLC. He has been in the mortgage industry since 1995 and in that time has closed thousands of loan transactions of all types including Conventional, FHA, VA, Texas Vet, USDA, Jumbo and Construction Loans. He co-founded Directions Equity in 2007 along with his business partner Marc Spitzer and together they have helped the company increase production over 20% per year since its inception. Easton holds a degree in Business Administration with concentration in real estate finance and mortgage lending. He is a member of the Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals and SA North Chamber.


jen gherardi

Jen Gherardi is a writer, editor and marketing communications expert with more than 15 years of experience in communications. She has worked with numerous brands including the Citizen Watch Company, India Hicks Fine Jewelry, Lipault of Paris, LeapFrog and the International Baccalaureate. She has also held board leadership positions with several international and education nonprofits.

Gabriel Diego Delgado

Gabriel Diego Delgado is an art consultant at J.R. Mooney Galleries of Fine Art. He has spent almost a decade in nonprofit art management, serving as a curator of exhibitions at the Station Museum of Contemporary Art; the project manager of research and development at the Museo Alameda (a Smithsonian affiliate); the community outreach/communications director for an art and education nonprofit; and a working professional artist. He is a freelance curator and arts reviewer for several publications. His artwork has been shown in Arco 2012 (Madrid, Spain), New York, New York and MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art) D.C., as well as numerous galleries and venues.

/ NHOME november//december 2013

linda rudd

With more than 20 years of accomplished residential lending, her certified financial planning (CFP) certification and the strong and reputable engine of Legacy Mutual Mortgage, Linda Rudd provides the insight to plan the right mortgage to suit the financial needs for her full range of clientele with the utmost care and foresight. She consistently tops the San Antonio Business Journal’s list of top lenders, and with her family’s support, her commitment to the local arts and her passion for her industry, she also serves as a trusted advisor and presenter in the real estate and financial industries.

Sonya Edmondson Georgeff

Sonya Edmondson Georgeff has worked for H-E-B for 18 years in a variety of communication roles. Currently, she writes for and manages the production of H-E-B’s employee newsletter and internal blog. As an Air Force brat, she grew up all over the United States with a brief tour in England, but she has called San Antonio home since 1986. A 1995 graduate of Trinity University, she is married and has a 5-year-old daughter.

Angela Clack

Few people will confess a love of eating, but Angela Clack lists eating among her hobbies. She believes life is best experienced in the enjoyment of great food with family and friends. Her tastes range from casual street foods to exotic selections and fine dining. Clack enjoys traveling and uses it as an excuse to immerse herself in the local cuisine and culture. Raised on highly seasoned traditional Southern fare, she seeks out authentic food and dining experiences and documents her discoveries for other food lovers.

Allyson Seipp Allyson Seipp, a native Texan, is a sales counselor at The Towers on Park Lane. She holds her Bachelor’s in Marketing from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She has 10 years of experience in sales and marketing, and she is looking forward to a long and fruitful career. Seipp was offered her position at The Towers, and it has turned into a very rewarding decision, with new opportunities within her position around every corner. She lives happily in San Antonio with her boyfriend, Ryan, and is looking forward to starting her own family in the near future.

Margaux Gonzalez Huckabay

Margaux Gonzalez Huckabay is the director of communications for the Paseo del Rio Association, a nonprofit that protects, promotes and preserves the River Walk. She is also the managing editor of RIO Magazine, the official magazine of the River Walk, and she owns her own photography company. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Paul, and their six pets. She is also part of Big Brothers Big Sisters, and she raises money for San Antonio charities.

rita zenzen heck

In her hometown of Chicago, Rita Zenzen Heck was a newspaper and magazine editor and TV copywriter. She currently lives in San Antonio and volunteers with the Majestic Theatre, the San Antonio Sports Association, the San Antonio Conservation Society, the San Antonio Council for International Visitors and the San Antonio Downtown Residents Association. Heck has worked for Stars and Stripes, Overseas Weekly and Made In Europe magazine, as well as in advertising and PR, before opening her own Creative Overflow. She added The Green Connection in 1995, also producing green building showcases and her own green building and education magazine and events. Since 1995, she has hosted and produced The Green Connection television show on digital cable channel 20, which airs Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m.

Christian Reed-Ogba

Christian Reed-Ogba launched her boutique PR firm, BethanyEast PR, alongside her husband, Uchennaya, in late 2012 after relocating from Detroit. Since then, she has garnered much recognition in the social media marketing and nonprofit public relations sectors of the city’s increasing small business sector. Reed-Ogba is devoted to increasing connectivity between entrepreneurs, local community influencers and their audiences. As a publicist, she has worked with a number of nonprofits, new technology and hospitality brands, and she takes time to write freelance for area blogs and editorials.

november//december 2013 NHOME /


Nelson Enochs

// advisory board //


denise graves

Peggy Zettner

easton crafts

A realtor and real estate business owner since 1991, Denise Graves started the Graves Group in 2003 with the vision to offer extraordinary service to her clients, both locally and globally. The Graves Group has been in the Top 25 Real Estate Teams (SABJ) since 2005 and continues to set the standard for real estate in San Antonio and the Hill Country. With her 20-plus years of real estate experience in the area and her business mantra of “high tech, high touch,” Graves makes her properties stand out and keeps clients coming back.

San Antonio native Peggy Zettner has been in the wholesale interior design industry for more than 21 years. As president of Interior Trade Cartel Inc. (ITC) for the past 17-plus years, she has seen many changes in the local interior design market. And business has never been better. Zettner has always felt there was a need to bring more design product to the trade in San Antonio. ITC currently represents more than 100 lines of product. ITC is an ASID industry partner, and it is very involved in the community. As a wife, mother, daughter, sister and aunt, Zettner stays pretty busy. She loves entertaining family and friends, and her newest passion has been getting involved personally in the community. Her two biggest passions are CASA and Wounded Warriors.

Easton Crafts is the CEO of Directions Equity LLC. He has been in the mortgage industry since 1995, and in that time, he has closed thousands of loan transactions of all types, including Conventional, FHA, VA, Texas Vet, USDA, Jumbo and Construction Loans. He co-founded Directions Equity in 2007, along with his business partner Marc Spitzer, and together they have helped the company increase production more than 20 percent per year since its inception. Easton holds a degree in business administration with a concentration in real estate finance and mortgage lending. He is a member of the Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals and the San Antonio North Chamber.

trish najim

edna de saro

barry denton

As a realtor and certified luxury home marketing specialist, Trish Najim prides herself in providing her clients a service to best assist them with their real estate needs regardless of whether they are sellers or buyers. Najim is with Keller Williams Realty Luxury International in San Antonio, and she is also a certified staging consultant and an interior design consultant. With her design background, she is able to work with buyers to visualize themselves in the home of their dreams, and to help sellers make their homes appealing to buyers. 

Edna De Saro is the senior vice president of Lone Star National Bank. As marketing director of one of the fastest growing banks in Texas, De Saro is involved in the development and implementation of all strategic marketing objectives that include corporate branding, public relations and market positioning.

As the director of real estate sales at Cordillera Ranch, Barry Denton is dedicated to creating an environment where people work together to consistently exceed goals. Prior to joining Cordillera Ranch, he worked for Bluegreen Communities, starting as a sales consultant in 2000 and ultimately becoming the South Texas regional sales director in 2009. Denton also has a background in teaching and in the golf business, and he remains a member of the Professional Golfers’ Association of America. A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, he has been a licensed real estate agent since 1991 and a licensed broker since 2005.

/ NHOME november//december 2013

belinda vela-reyna Belinda Vela-Reyna is originally from Corpus Christi, Texas. She earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at San Antonio and a Master of Science degree in Educational Guidance and Counseling from Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. She retired from an 11-year career as a U.S. probation officer for the Western District of Texas San Antonio Division to stay home with her two beautiful daughters, Alexandria and Mia. She also has two amazing stepchildren, Danielle and John, and a wonderful husband. She has always had a passion for design, and she recently enjoyed renovating her new home with the help of Trent Hultgren.

paulette jemal Paulette Jemal is a global property specialist and a member of the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing. With a degree in advertising from the University of Texas at Austin, she is also a writer/producer for Telemundo and a freelance writer for a number of Hispanic advertising agencies. Jemal is currently one of the luxury specialists at Keller Williams Luxury International at the Dominion. Fluent in Spanish, French, Italian, English and Portuguese, she lists and sells property worldwide.

special advertising section


G i v e y o u r ki t c h e n a b r e ak t o n igh t a n d d i n e wi t h u s

november//december 2013 NHOME /


Frederick Costa continues to write his love sonnets in fine cuisine and wine and the latest creation is not only a new look for Frederick’s Restaurant — complete with a fresh menu featuring his latest French and Asian favorites offering a variety of tastes to try.

// advisory board //

dale ponder Dale Ponder is the owner and operator of Cozy Outdoor Escapes, an outdoor living retail center focusing on customer service and high-end equipment. His career started in the electrical trades, where he held various positions in a large, nonunion shop in San Antonio, where he was raised. He later entered the international market, project managing the construction of drug interdiction radar sites throughout South and Central America and owning and operating a telecommunication construction service company in Caracas, Venezuela. Ponder left the business in 2010 to pursue his passion for the outdoor living retail sector. He developed a business plan, and Cozy Outdoor Escapes opened to the public in March 2011.

Rev. Dr. Claudette Copeland

Try our new Happy Hour appetizers and drink specials at our New Bar at the Broadway location!

To make reservations call #210.885.3782 M O N D AY T H R O U G H F R I D AY: 11:30 a.m. — 2:00 p.m. lunch 5:30 p.m. — 10:00 p.m. dinner S AT U R D AY: 5:30 p.m. — 10:00 p.m. dinner


/ NHOME november//december 2013

Rev. Dr. Claudette Copeland has served in a variety of ministry settings, including the Hospital Chaplaincy and the Mission Field (in Haiti, South Africa, West Africa and East Africa), and is a former member of the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education. Copeland is a founding co-convener of the Women in Ministry Training Conference, serving aspiring and active women ministers in all seasons of their journey. She is married to the Bishop David Michael Copeland. She serves with her husband as executive pastor of the New Creation Christian Fellowship Church, a thriving nondenominational church in Windcrest, Texas, just outside San Antonio. Copeland also has a passion and appreciation for beautiful homes and exquisite décor.

Gabriel Diego Delgado Gabriel Diego Delgado is an art consultant at J.R. Mooney Galleries of Fine Art. He has spent almost a decade in nonprofit art management, serving as a curator of exhibitions at the Station Museum of Contemporary Art; the project manager of research and development at the Museo Alameda (a Smithsonian affiliate); the community outreach/ communications director for an art and education nonprofit; and a working professional artist. He is a freelance curator and arts reviewer for several publications. His artwork has been shown in Arco 2012 (Madrid, Spain), New York, New York and MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art) D.C., as well as numerous galleries and venues.

mike hollaway Mike Hollaway enjoys a well-earned reputation as one of the San Antonio area’s most prestigious builders of fine custom homes since 1992. One of his many well-earned awards was the 2008 Builder of the Year. He is a past president of the Greater San Antonio Builders Association; he holds graduate master builder (GMB) and certified green professional (CGP) designations from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB); and he is a voting director of the Texas Association of Builders and the NAHB. Hollaway currently builds throughout San Antonio, as far north as Austin and Horseshoe Bay and as far south as the Eagle Ford Shale. Some of his community involvement includes being a past member of Rey Feo court, and he is honored to have been chosen to build the 2013 St. Jude’s Dream Home.

november//december 2013 NHOME /


t he


a t


a n a n

’ s.

A New Bar With An Old Tradition. An elegantly appointed Old World bar where cordial

Like the great old bars of the past, we dispense classic

bartenders practice their venerable art behind a

cocktails, exotic beverages and good cheer in a

46-foot bar of reverently polished cherrywood. The

civilized setting. Join us for drinks and hors d’oeuvres,

cheerful clinking of glasses punctuates the rich notes

then come upstairs to Bohanan’s Prime Steaks and

of the baby grand piano.

Seafood for the best steak you’ve ever had.

(210) 472 - 2 2 0 2 20

# 221 East Houston Street San Antonio, Texas

www . boh a n a ns . com

/ N H O M E n o v e m b e r / /C d ee cl em e rr2 a 0 1t 3 e with us — the bar is open! ebb


T W O L O C AT I O N S I N S A N A N T O N I O ! Mid-Week Power Lunches. Happy Hour & Dinner Nightly. Full Service Off-Site Catering. On-Site Banquets & Events. Alamo Quarry Market 255 E. Basse Road, Suite 500 210.832.0300 Éilan Located on the Piazza 17101 La Cantera Parkway 210.251.3542 | #piattiristo | november//december 2013 NHOME /


holiday table image B. and E. Dudzinscy/

// dine //

Season’s Eatings Some of San Antonio’s finest restaurants offer a number of unique holiday dining options so you and your loved ones can enjoy a season to remember. // by: Angela Clack 22

/ NHOME november//december 2013


wine glass image magicinfoto; couple image Lucky Business/

he holidays offer an opportunity to step away from our dayto-day routines to spend time with family, friends and coworkers. Some of San Antonio’s finest are offering unique dining options to make your season brighter. Parties of two to parties of 200 will find room to celebrate, as most restaurants accommodate large groups with private dining facilities and, in some instances, customized menus. Families and corporate groups can enjoy traditional options or themed fare.

An intimate setting for couples seeking a respite from holiday tasks, Bohanan’s Prime Steaks and Seafood, downtown San Antonio’s premier location for fine dining, also offers event venues suitable for parties of 10 to 300, including seating for 20 guests on their patio and up to 300 standing guests in their stunning courtyard. For more information, visit www. or call Jenny at 210-885-0538.

Lüke San Antonio offers private dining for up to 150 guests and up to as many as 500 for an exclusive buyout of their entire facility. Options range from a build-your-own holiday buffet with choices such as local pumpkin soup, shrimp cornbread dressing and mini desserts or bread pudding to family-style holiday selections including Southern caviar and cornmeal pancakes, Creole seafood gumbo, Texas yam soufflé and Wild Turkey pecan pie with vanilla pot de crème. You can request more information and download a catering kit at

Located at 910 S. Alamo St., Rosario’s Cafe y Cantina provides a wide variety of contemporary executions of traditional Mexican dishes. Rosario’s offers special menus for private events with 20 to 70 guests. They will also customize their menu. More information is available at www.

Myron’s Prime Steakhouse a San Antonio favorite that accommodates private parties of 20 to 80 guests with a choice of banquet event menus. Featuring seafood-stuffed mushrooms and shrimp remoulade, filet medallions, ahi tuna and double-cut pork chops, Myron’s also offers banquet bar options. Call 210-493-3031 or visit for more information.

Sustenio at the Eilan Hotel Resort and Spa offers elegant settings including a VIP room for up to 10 guests and a private dining area featuring a display kitchen for as many as 66 guests. Sustenio touts a “farm to table” commitment to using local and sustainable resources. The menu includes a number of imaginative ceviches and main courses including mesquite-grilled buffalo and rack of lamb. For assistance with catering or a private event, send an inquiry to

Biga on the Banks, with its amazing views of the river and the exquisite cuisine of Chef Bruce Auden, can accommodate parties of eight to 200 guests desiring an upscale private dining experience. Visit the private dining page at to request a party information packet or call 210-225-0722.

Piatti Éilan, a new addition to the community of Éilan at La Cantera Parkway, offers seating for parties of up to 65 in their Fontana Room and up to 100 in their Great Room. Event Sales Director Jan Bonugli applies her 20-plus years of industry expertise to ensure guests have a memorable experience. Private party event inquiries can be made online at If, like me, you think “the most wonderful time of the year” is the onset of football season, you’ll enjoy dining options geared toward sports enthusiasts. New to San Antonio, Cover 3 is a sports lover’s paradise with an expected (and appreciated) loud atmosphere and an eclectic menu that includes the staples (wings and sliders), along with flatbreads, burgers and a 22-ounce bone-in rib eye. More information is available for the Austin and San Antonio locations at 

november//december 2013 NHOME /


Sumo Japanese Steakhouse promises an entertaining and delicious experience for the whole family with their Teppanyaki tableside presentation. Daily happy hour specials begin at 4:30 and end at 7. Sumo offers a reverse happy hour from 9 to 11:30 on Friday and Saturday nights. Make a reservation online at www.

Most Thanksgivings, you’ll find me with family enjoying a traditional meal – one we’ve

worked for days to plan, prepare and present. Dinner begins at noon and concludes late in the evening with a massive cleanup effort. The fellowship, fond memories and leftovers are worth it. However, there are other options: Lüke San Antonio, a Chef John Besh restaurant, will be open with special menus for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Click on the reservations link at www. to make an Open Table reservation.

Open on Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve, North Side gem Piatti Éilan will delight diners with a special prefixe menu. Call 210-251-3452 or visit to make restaurant reservations. If you’re taking a break after a robust day of shopping for holiday bargains or are planning to catch up with old friends, make a reservation at one or more of these favorites for an evening (and a season) to remember:


/ NHOME november//december 2013

Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden is located in the historic Pearl Brewery. Contact Angela Toscano for information about their semi-private and private dining accommodations for up to 270 people. Boiler House offers offsite catering. It is a must for New Year’s Eve, when they will serve their full regular menu, a pre-fixe tasting dinner option, wine pairing packages, live music and a champagne toast at midnight. For more information, visit www.boilerhousesa. com.

Texas de Brazil, a downtown favorite located on East Houston Street, is renowned for their slow-roasted, impeccably seasoned beef, lamb, pork, chicken and Brazilian sausage and salad bar with seasonal selections. They will be open on Thanksgiving and will include turkey with all the trimmings, along with their usual menu items. You can make reservations at www.texasdebrazil. com/location/san-antonio. At the time of this writing, a $10 special offer was available.

Visitors to The Grill at Leon Springs will discover an energetic, music-filled environment with an extensive list of wines by the glass and cocktails. Their menu includes pizza from their authentic brick oven, house-made pasta, Hill Country entrées and an extensive selection of appetizers and desserts. The Alamo, the Candle and the Fireplace Rooms are available for private dining. You can make reservations online at Parties of eight or more are asked to call 210-698-8797. ‘Tis the season to take advantage of all the holidays have to offer. Reservations and advance planning are strongly encouraged. ■

thanksgiving table image Sandra Cunningham; 2014 cork image Zepedrocoelho/

Yard House welcomes weary shoppers and sports lovers alike with a food menu that has more than 100 selections. Open late, the La Cantera location includes a vast selection of beers ranging from light and easy to dark-roasted with craft, malty and wheat selections. Large screens are visible from every table so patrons can take in the game while enjoying selections from the Chalkboard Series, which features “unique rotating draft offerings” in limited amounts. To view their extensive food and beer menus, visit www. and select the San Antonio location.

River City Seafood & Grill, located in the Stone Oak area, features a delightful selection of fried and broiled seafood and a killer bread pudding in a quiet setting. A neighborhood favorite, River City has a daily happy hour with fun appetizers including fried pickles, fried jalapeños and broccoli cheese bites. Private dining is also available. Click on the reservation link at www. to be directed to Open Table.

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BY TEXAS MONTHLY Top Row: Ellen Bunde—NMLS #406311, Jeff Williams—NMLS #221380, Dale Lucas— NMLS #258782, Rob Adams—NMLS#221357, Jon Tober—NMLS #212945, Tina Mattingly—NMLS #479802, Keren Wells Bottom Row: Leslie Barnett—NMLS #225632, Claudia Costilla, Jim McKissick—NMLS #225338, Kristie Arocha—NMLS #299226, Diane Koenning—NMLS #219558


15900 La Cantera, Suite 26230 San Antonio, TX 78256

© 2013 SWBC. All rights reserved. Loans are subject to credit and property approval; other guidelines may apply. Program guidelines are subject to change. Rates are subject to change. 8540-4780 0813

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// functional design //


A Investment

Having provided South and Central Texans with custom organizational solutions for maximizing their space for 31 years, industry leader California Closets shows no signs of slowing down. // by: Kim Young // photography: Jason Roberts


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I love clothes and shoes. The only thing worse than not having something to match my ‘80s vintage designer skirt is not being able to find it in the closet. And how can you properly accessorize if you can’t remember what’s in all of those unopened packages you’ve been hiding (I mean “storing”)? The first time I saw an ad for California Closets, I was mesmerized. Just the thought of having organization in my closet sent me into nirvana. It’s hard to categorize a house as “luxury” without a large, well-designed and organized master suite closet. And the best thing about California Closets: they have something for every room in the house and garage. It’s the holiday season, and you may be expecting the in-laws, outlaws and Cousin It. Have you thought about maximizing your space with a wall bed in your home office or guestroom? “We do closets better than anyone else on the planet, but we do so much more, as well,” says

“We do closets better than anyone else on the planet, but we do much more, as well.” Daniel Siegel, president of California Closets of the Texas Hill Country. “What sets us apart from others is that we are full service. We design, manufacture and install, and bring quality people into your home to do it. We pride ourselves on 31 years of custom solutions in Central and South Texas. If your closet is a nightmare and you can’t find anything, one of our specialists will come do a wardrobe inventory. We offer a complimentary consultation to discuss your needs and come up with a solution.” If the kitchen is the heart of the home, it’s also the catchall. And I have to admit I’m not much on cooking, but I’m pretty sure that if I had an organized pantry, I could pick out any recipe (my kids are laughing) and know pretty quickly if I have all of the ingredients necessary without getting halfway though and realizing I need something from the store. Talk about a buzz kill, not to mention a late dinner. And for the men of house, California Closets has an entertainment center design that will blow you away. Trying to find a place for all of your Father’s Day, birthday and “just because you’re cool” gifts can be a challenge for even the smartest engineer. It’s time to relax and start enjoying those components in your California Closets media center. For any of you who think organization is blah and boring, I have news for you. California Closets can give you color, shine or glass – just about anything you can imagine, they can deliver. Are you an aquarium enthusiast? There are fish tank lovers around the world. Let California Closets create the perfect system, keeping in mind the size of the tank, water weight, where to store the pump, power supply, cords and tubing, all the while maximizing your space. I won’t write about budget since most of our readers are in the luxury market, but space and budget can be important factors for some. California Closets prides itself on delivering both. I think you’ll find that a consultation with them will give you the solutions you need much faster than watching those well-known home improvement shows. Hmm, coffee, tea or me – it’s definitely 5:00 somewhere, and I’m starting to think about a fine glass of wine. Since you mentioned it, yes, California Closets has a wine and coffee bar that's perfect for that little nook in your master suite. And we can’t forget Jill and Jack Jr. How do you go from toddler to college applicant with just one California Closets system? Adaptability is the key. Obviously, november//december 2013 NHOME /



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infants don’t have to worry about an organized, well-designed closet, but big drawers can hold dividers to separate little clothes and do-dads, and you don’t have to worry about Jr. not being able to reach hangers. When they’re old enough to dress themselves, it’s almost as good as when they can drive. A closet with tiers is the answer. Tiers allow toddlers to reach everyday clothes, but not those special occasion clothes you don’t want them playing dress-up with for the babysitter when you’re not home. Paint and fabrics are easy to change as your child grows. Short hanging rods are great for seasonal organization. Low drawers that teach toddlers self-sufficiency become storage for those rarely needed items in the teen years. Three tiers can easily become two, or two with a section for prom dresses. With three cheerleaders and a football star under my roof, I had mums, trophies and sports pins running out my ears. Trying to throw out the old to make room for the new was a major production. What used to be space for toy trucks, trains and Barbie dolls can now be utilized for doing homework (a foreign concept, according to my son), playing Xbox or watching Jack Sparrow in “Pirates of the Caribbean” or Edward Cullen in “The Twilight Saga.” With any luck, in the passing years, thoughts of college will bring about technological concerns of where to put the charging station or space for a book bag (yes, they do allow you to take home textbooks that you might want to read if you’re bored). As Siegel says, “At California Closets, we want to be a great fit, whether it’s space, lifestyle or budget.” A California Closets system is truly an investment that can last a lifetime. ■

“At California Closets, we want to be a great fit, whether it’s space, lifestyle or budget.”

For more information about California Closets, visit www. november//december 2013 NHOME /


// functional design //

Reach for the Stars Chaddock’s Larry Laslo offers some holiday decorating tips so you can optimize your everyday lifestyle while celebrating your blessings with a luxurious sense of style this season. // by: Jen Gherardi // photography: robin jerstad


nternationally acclaimed arbiter of luxury taste, Larry Laslo, is a world-renowned expert at creating visually enticing environments. He loves the holiday season, especially when these days are filled with an abundance of children, pets, friends and family. He enthusiastically points out that there is also no better time to celebrate our blessings with a luxurious sense of style. We had a chance to speak with him about some of his favorite holiday decorating tips as he caught up on some much-needed rest at his beautiful Palm


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Beach bungalow. He has been particularly busy completing his latest collection of Chaddock furniture, exquisite heirloom-quality pieces brought to life by master craftsmen in the foothills of North Carolina. At the outset, Laslo suggests optimizing your everyday style. While the holidays may provide an opportunity for adding more sparkle and glitz, everything you do should still be in keeping with the fundamental style and personality of your home. In any holiday decorating project, he loves to

start with the tree and encourages people to “reach for the stars. Do it up to the ceiling, and decorate to your heart’s content.” He recommends stringing a tree with regular lights placed on a dimmer, and then turning them down to virtually nothing so they are reduced to little glowing pin dots. “Nothing is worse than having glaring lights in your face when you are trying to look glamorous.” A large dining table that brings friends and family together is a must for holiday entertaining. Laslo prefers to decorate this with long, low arrangements. He recommends mixing pine and other greenery of different shades and accenting this with just the right touches of gold and silver. As a Floridian, he loves to place orchids in all-gold pots that are encrusted with Swarovski stones. He then puts a few Swarovski stones where the dirt would be and even uses hot glue to adhere some stones to a few of the leaves. Laslo feels it imparts a very festive feel without screaming “Christmas.” Don’t just set the table – set the scene by dressing up the backs of chairs with festive seat swag and place cards. One of Laslo’s favorite ways to do this is to Polaroid each guest as they come into the room

and then pin their photographs to the backs of the chairs. That way, each person can always find his or her place, and it adds even more fun and whimsy to the event.  Incorporating accent chairs around the room is also essential. Laslo’s Garbo chair, recently designed for Chaddock in a rich, textured emerald-green velvet, provides the perfect pop of holiday color for a refined home. Mirrored pieces are particularly breathtaking at holiday time, and they intensify the feeling of warmth and magic. Laslo loves to use furniture

such as his Chaddock Reflection Credenza and decorate these pieces with candles, flowers and jewel-encrusted greenery. The room is then filled with reflections upon reflections, transforming the environment into something utterly magical. Above all, Laslo stresses the importance of keeping everything personally meaningful, from the event planning to the décor to the gift giving. One of his favorite traditions is to save things from the past that friends and family have given him over the years and incorporate them in his tree decoration.

When it comes to giving gifts, Laslo believes in prioritizing originality and thought over expense. “Gift giving can get so expensive and out of hand,” he says. “It’s always better to select something that is chosen from the heart.” The ultimate expression of holiday sharing is to open your home and create a warm and welcoming environment for those you love. ■

For more information, visit Chaddock online at www.

Above all, Laslo stresses the importance of keeping everything personally meaningful. november//december 2013 NHOME /


// functional design //

holiday designs by interior designer

lara hart // photography: jason roberts


/ NHOME november//december 2013

25 years of expressing your personal style


november//december 2013 NHOME /


// profile //

Luxury Real Estate Matchmaker

With a million-dollar smile that sells luxury real estate, Phyllis Browning Company President Jennifer Shemwell lives by the Golden Rule her mother taught her.

// by: Rita Zenzen Heck


s a child, Jennifer Browning Shemwell was always amazed that selling real estate could make her mother so happy. “She would come home excited and tell us about her day and about the great people she had met,” she said. “Only incidentally did she mention selling … just happy memories.” Shemwell smiled. Elegant from first glance, Shemwell lights up a room when she enters stylishly dressed and smiling, inquiring how everyone is and complimenting them on their dress and appearance. No wonder clients cling to her like bees to honey. “I grew up knowing about real estate, but never thought I would be a part of the business,” she recalled. “I got my B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Yale University. My first job was with the government, which turned out to be a dream assignment at a World’s Fair in Seville, Spain. Since I speak fluent Spanish, I became a tour guide and I loved it. It was one of the greatest years of my life.” Born and raised in San Antonio, Shemwell always appreciated the finer things in life and always thought she would eventually be part of the luxury real estate market. Once back in San Antonio, she realized she wanted to join her mom, Phyllis Browning, in the work that made her so content. Fortunately, she inherited her mom’s easygoing, nurturing manner and natural knack for matching people with property. In no time, they were more than mother and daughter – they were friendly (but serious!) competitors striving to break records, which they have done consistently, selling between $20 and $30 million of properties in the million dollar-plus range.  Married to Overland Partners architect Robert Shemwell, Jennifer Shemwell has successfully balanced her sometimes demanding career with successfully raising three children: Paris, 13; Browning, 11-and-a-half; and Reed, 10. Are any of her children leaning toward real estate? “Too soon to tell,” she smiled, “but I hope so. I’d like them to be blessed with the opportunity of helping people find the home of their dreams and making the process an easy, pleasant experience.” Specializing in luxury properties in the Alamo Heights area, Shemwell is currently excited about her success with The Broadway high-rise luxury condos on Broadway and Hildebrand. “So far, we have them 40 percent occupied and have sold two of the penthouses, which are amazing,” said the enterprising Shemwell, smiling. “And I think we will have it completely occupied next year.” Why do so many real estate clients respond so positively to Shemwell? “I think it’s the Golden Rule my mom taught me as a child: Treat others as you would like to be treated,” she replied. “You can’t miss if you really care and want to do the best for your clients. I feel I was born to be a luxury real estate matchmaker.” ■

For more information, you may contact Jennifer Browning Shemwell at


/ NHOME november//december 2013

The Graves Group The art of fine residential real estate Fabulous Hill Country homes for golfers! presents:

CommanChe TraCe, Kerrville – Tuscan-Mediterranean influenced design on 1.59 acres overlooking the second green of the Hills in Comanche Trace golf course. 3 bedrooms, 3.5 baths and superior custom detailing throughout. $2,000,000

Cordillera ranCh – Transitional Texas Robert Thornton designed 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath home on over 5.5 horse-friendly acres. $776,000

Denise Graves,

Cordillera ranCh – Beautiful Mediterranean-style 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath hilltop home by Burdick/Christofilis on 5.22 acres. $815,000

RealtoR®, CLHMS, CRS, ABR, GRI I I eoffice: cell: nov m b e r 210-698-4700 //december 2 0 1 3210-260-2176 NHOME / 3 5

YELLOWJACKET RANCH consists of 142 parklike, gentley rolling acres with both sides of South Grape Creek and just 9 miles from Fredericksburg. A 3800 SF, custom Tony Martin home with all the detail and unique finish you expect including a high end kitchen, beamed ceilings, long leaf pine and wonderful master suite.  Gated entry, paved road to the home, guesthouse and workshop. $3,350,000   GERMAN REPRODUCTION home by Richard Laughlin on 28 acres with views into downtown Fredericksburg. 3228 SF of living space in main home with the Hill Country flare you will appreciate and Laughlin homes have won so many awards for; plus guest quarters over the garage. Excellent landscaping, this is the package you have been waiting for. $968,000

When location, luxury and quality are important to you, then you should consider this energy efficient ICF home on 22+ acres just outside the Fredericksburg city limits. 3200+ SF, 3/2.5 with room to expand the upstairs, custom details, pool, garden areas and horse friendly soils with Ag exemption. $1,298,780

116 E. Austin | Fredericksburg, TX 78624 Office: 830-990-8708 | Cell: 830-456-6327 | Fax:  830-990-8906

Dennis Kusenberger GRI, CRS, Broker/Owner RE/MAX Town & Country | Each office independently owned and operated. 36

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Located between Fredericksburg and Kerrville, mysteriously hidden behind gated entry, the backyard overlooks Wolf Creek which has been dammed to create one of the bests pools of water in Gillespie County. Over 8,000 SF of custom living space designed for a busy family and one that values a lifestyle of entertainment. $2,850,000

Historic Premier Ranch between Fredericksburg and Mason, 1,674 acres, high fenced with complete deer breeding setup, lodge that will sleep 20+ people, limestone plantationstyle main home. The work has been done, come and enjoy! In addition to the wildlife, this is excellent cattle and horse country with fertile soils and several irrigation quality water wells. $8,700,000

FREDERICKSBURG BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY, if anyone knows anything about dining, then you know that AUGUST E's is one of the best known restaurants in the Hill Country and situated on a prime commercial property in the central business district; only a block off Main Street. The building was completely renovated and updated in 2007 into the stylish venue it is today where patrons can be served in the eloquent dining room, the lounge or at the full bar from more casual dining. The offering includes all of the furniture, fixtures and equipment with the exception of a few personal items of decoration which have personal value to the owners. The kitchen is the heart of the operation, and is equipped with modern equipment which is designed to get the job done in a professional manner. With 5128 SF of space, this is the largest seating restaurant in Fredericksburg.

73 acres just 5 miles from Fredericksburg with Pedernales River frontage, 6,000+ SF home with all the appointments you would expect and views overlooking the river valley, excellent soils for horses, guest house and much more. This home is an entertainer’s dream with easy flow from kitchen to greatroom to the veranda and the master retreat will totally re-define that term as you view other homes. $3,539,000 november//december 2013 NHOME /



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november//december 2013 NHOME /



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november//december 2013 NHOME /


Trish Najim “God, Family, then Business”


Check out my website


(210) 722-0500


Call or Text 210.213.2531 “ 42

/ NHOME november//december 2013

10 Dominion Dr. San Antonio, TX 78257 Each Keller Williams is independently owned and operated.

OPENING DOORS IN SAN ANTONIO SINCE 1974 KING REALTORS is dedicated to helping San Antonio and the oil industry with their real estate needs. If you are looking to buy or sell a property, call us and say you saw it in Shale Magazine!

TABITHA KING ďƒŞ 210.414.4255

5600 Broadway Avenue | San Antonio, TX 78209 |

Your Lifestyle. Your Community. our expertise

ALAMO HEIGHTS 210.821.6441

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// outdoors //

A Man for All Seasons

Using his groundwork to pursue his passion for flying, Tommy Bonner brings out the best in your outdoor spaces with his thriving, aptly named maintenance business, Mile High Yard Works. // by: Rita Zenzen Heck


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turf grass rolls image Nagy-Bagoly Arpad/


t 17, Tommy Bonner was doing what lots of teenagers do to earn extra pocket money: mowing lawns in his childhood neighborhood. But his mind was always in the sky. His dad, Mike, was a pilot and he couldn’t wait to take the controls of his own plane and fly miles high, which later inspired the name of his thriving landscape maintenance business: Mile High Yard Works, headquartered in New Braunfels, San Antonio and surrounding areas including the Hill Country, Seguin and San Marcos. Following his dream, Bonner enrolled at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University at Randolph Air Force Base, where he took basic classes coupled with flying-related programs. Meanwhile, he had expanded his lawn-mowing business to include a little maintenance like hedge trimming, mulching and planting, which earned him a little more cash and a lot more knowledge. He figured he could use his groundwork to get him up in the air. Realizing his dream, in no time, Bonner was sharing the controls of his dad’s Beechcraft Bonanza. In 2001, still in his early 20s, the entrepreneur turned his pocket money project into a full-scale landscaping maintenance business, initially focused on lawn and grounds upkeep. Soon after, he added hardscape design and installation “because many clients wanted paths, walkways and flower bed enhancements that were permeable, allowing water to drain underground.” The next step was the installation and monitoring of sprinkling systems “to better control water usage,” said the inherent environmentalist. Mile High now has more than 30 employees pushing lawnmowers, spreading gravel and nurturing plants. Currently, more than 500 homes, plus businesses, restaurants and malls

depend upon Mile High to manicure their outdoor spaces from the sophisticated The Ridge shopping center to the rustic charm of Gruene Hall outside of New Braunfels. Eventually, clients were asking for concrete work for new patios and flagstone and stained concrete embellishments to improve access to their outdoor space. “Since we aim to please, we initiated the concrete side of the business last year,” said the astute young businessman. “We were also becoming aware that many clients like to spend evening time enjoying their outdoor space with barbecues, so lighting became another one of our services. Including romantic, energy-efficient lighting not only makes the garden available 24 hours a day, it is a definite safety measure to discourage intruders.” How does an affable, easygoing and understanding guy like Bonner manage to handle his broad range of clients and gain their trust and loyalty? Just that. He understands their yard needs and concerns and strives to fulfill them, always remaining calm, helpful and smiling. According to Bonner, “Every client is different. Some know exactly what they want, which makes it easier for us. Others need a little prompting – suggestions for design and materials. When that doesn’t work, we call on Sarah Smith, a professional landscape architect who can miraculously transpose their thoughts on paper, which visualizes a complete plan for their space. So far, this has never failed and we wind up with really happy clients. So far, we think we have satisfied 97 percent of our clients; the other 3 percent have to find another company. “The one thing missing right now is a full-fledged nursery where clients can come out and actually see the plants and

“So far, we think we have satisfied 97 percent of our clients.” materials we’ve suggested and visualize them in their own yard.” Bonner is currently striving to fill this void by actively seeking a nursery suitable for his clients’ needs. “We hope that will happen before too long.” With that, he grinned as if he were keeping a secret.

As Mile High Yard Works grows, Bonner is looking to make the operation a real family undertaking. His wife, Mariya, currently employed as a civil engineer, is planning to join the firm in 2014, probably overseeing day-to-day operations. And maybe one day, his daughter, Kiley (4), and

2-year-old Landyn will join the crew. With such an active company, Bonner still finds time to fly, with his favorite trips to Louisiana where he has some property and friends. “Just before Landyn was born, I was getting ready for a trip to Louisiana when I got a call from my wife november//december 2013 NHOME /


that she was going to the doctor for a scheduled checkup,” he recalled. “We didn’t think it was anything urgent, so I went. Soon after arriving, I got a phone call to hurry back. Mariya was in labor and probably would deliver shortly. Man, I got in that plane and did an amazing grace flight, which got me back to San Antonio just in time for the blessed event. I’ll never forget that.” Holiday outdoor decorating is another valuable service Mile High offers. “We match our ideas to the seasons: trees, wreaths, lighting – they’re all part of celebrating the many holidays we have, including Thanksgiving, Christmas and all the rest which occur throughout the year, including individual special occasion like weddings, birthdays and anniversaries,” Bonner said. Like the man of all seasons, Bonner is always available to bring out the best in your outdoor spaces at Mile High Yard Works. ■

Creative Overflow/The Green Connection is located at 201 Barrera in San Antonio, Texas. For more information, contact Rita Zenzen Heck at 210-212-8031 or visit

➻ Pergolas ➻ Pavilions ➻ Arbors ➻ Decks ➻ Outdoor Kitchens ➻ Patio Covers

Mile High Yard Works 2951 IH 35S / 830-626-3455

Serving: San Antonio, New Braunfels, San Marcos, Schertz, Universal City, Converse, Seguin and Garden Ridge Outdoor space management is a year-round commitment for Mile High Yard Works. The following are just a few chores recommended for late fall and early winter: • Remove sticks, stones and other debris from the ground

• Treat to prevent winter and spring weeds

• Continue mowing, leaving a two-inch height, so long as it continues to grow

• Pull or cut annuals; leave roots to decompose and add organic material to soil

• Feed lawns and plant material in early fall

• Bring plants in-house; they beautify and many clean the air

• Treat weeds to prevent next year’s growth • Rake leaves and mow into mulch

• Plant an indoor herb garden to enjoy during winter months

Enjoy your outdoor space without the labor:

Rely on Mile High Yard Works!

➻ Decorative Concrete ➻ Water Features ➻ Outdoor Fireplaces ➻ and more…


/ NHOME november//december 2013

210.380.4229 San Antonio, TX

"Experience Living - Outdoors."

"Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the FIRE ..." Come and visit us this season......

Located between Bitters & Nakoma off 281 S. 210 276-0734 Open: M-F 9-6 & Sat 10-4 november//december 2013 NHOME /





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[210] 386.6531




OUR SCOPE OF SERVICES IS VERY BROAD, INCLUDING (BUT NOT LIMITED TO):  Landscaping  Landscape Design  Irrigation  Xeriscape  Retaining walls

 Patios/Decking  Fencing  Concrete work  Masonry work  All maintenance



Design • Maintenance • Irrigation • Sprinkler

830-626-3455 •

14726 Bulverde Road | San Antonio, TX 78247

Building and servicing pools since 1987

When Only The Best Will Do!


A Sanchez Pool custom design can provide whatever you can dream up, with superior quality, integrity and unrivaled safety features. We can also build you a beautiful backyard Patio Cabana. Sanchez Pools is licensed, insured and bonded. Sanchez Pools is also a member of the Better Business Bureau, and a Hayward select pool builder. november//december 2013 NHOME /










210.340.2033 • 210.789.2033 • 866.202.1650 • •


OvMe E Tc R eUmCbTeIrO 2N0 1B3Y : J O S E P H L A V E Z Z A R I C U S T O M H O M E S A N D R E M O D E L I N G / N H O M E nHo m bCe O r /N/ S de

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// industry insights //

voices professionals of the

Make the season merry and bright in your home by following these suggestions for fine holiday decorating from some of the finest in San Antonio real estate.

Rafael A. Sandoval

Colonial Iron Doors

Lara hart

Kelly Parrish Walker

llb interiors

Parrish & Company Inc.

LLB Interiors just recently completed a home that included 14 Christmas trees. Wow, what a project! The client and I decided on individual room themes, and she had already begun the process. She had beautiful new ornaments saved up from earlier purchases that started our process. We began with the topper of the tree, then we proceeded to the filler and ribbons and then we delicately placed each ornament by wiring to the tree for added security. The crowning touch was each single chosen skirting and surprise decoration on each tree – and an awesome topper element. The amazing outcome was to stroll through the home and see a Christmas wonderland in each room completed with the individual design and coloring collaboration that we had previously installed in the bedding, draperies and furnishings. You can see some of our beautiful Christmas decorations in this issue. Enjoy!


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Holidays can be overwhelming, especially in an improperly prepared kitchen. When planning your space, think about how often you entertain and add simple luxuries to make cooking for a large group fun, not a flop. For example, the GE Profile Series Advantium ovens allow you to prepare meals up to eight times faster than a conventional oven while locking in moisture for juicy flavor. The Advantium 240 can speed-cook a 5-pound roaster chicken in 33 minutes and still produce the ovenquality taste and texture you expect. Every minute you can save while cooking adds up and allows for more time to create those special memories with loved ones.

Prepare for the holiday season! Give your home the appeal of a wroughtiron door. Brighten up the entrance of your home and receive your guests with the elegance of handmade wrought-iron work. Elevate the character of your home by adding ornamental ironwork, and have your home looking beautiful for the holidays. Let us transform your idea into reality by creating your dream iron door. Our slogan is, “Colonial Iron Doors: where iron becomes art.”

Jill Seigel California Closets

The following are my holiday decorating tips for keeping it simple and staying organized: (1) What is your signature look? By keeping with the same color scheme, theme and style, your holiday look will be more cohesive and consistent, as well as feel professionally decorated. (2) Switch it up! For the holidays, re-imagine your living room so the focal point is the fireplace or perhaps the tree and shift around your furniture pieces. Think about trying something new or creating more coziness for the season. (3) Think heirlooms! Start investing in an ornament collection you can add to year after year and that can be passed on to the kids as part of your family tradition. Buy for quality, and buy things that make you happy and are meaningful to you and your family. Also, buy a durable cloth ornament bag with individual pockets to store them – protect your collection and stay organized.

Tom Burrows

Joann Wilmeth California Closets

‘Tis the season of baking for friends and family! Reduce your stress with an organized, adjustable pantry custom designed for you and your space. Creating sections to separate items into categories makes locating items a breeze: slide-out can and spice racks, baskets for breads and snacks and drawers to keep essentials together. DIY or call in the experts. Happy baking!

Sterling Home Technologies

With a little planning, you can make your home participate in the holidays. It can be as simple as having your decorative outdoor lights plugged into a timer, or you can use your lighting control system to automatically turn them on at dusk and off at dawn or take a much more elaborate approach. By using RGB outdoor LED lighting, you can have your white lights turn red and green for the holidays.  And no need to limit yourself to one time of year. Why not red, white and blue for the Fourth of July or orange for Halloween? With the correct type of light and control, you have an enormous palette of color choices. To complete the mood, play your favorite list of holiday hits through a whole-house audio system, both indoors and out – maybe some John Philip Sousa marches for the Fourth or scary sound effects for Oct. 31. Make your doorbell chime “Jingle Bells” for carolers, or flash the lights on trick-ortreaters. Project seasonal displays outdoors on a clear acrylic screen. And you can turn all of these features on and off from your iPad or iPhone.

Dale Ponder Cozy Outdoor Escapes

Fireplaces are a central part of home comfort, and they can become a striking architectural addition to any living space. Cozy Outdoor Escapes is proud to be a South Texas dealer for the Ortal family of products. Ortal has been in business since 1986, and it is well-known for its wide selection of modern and sleek gas fireplaces. All of the product line is designed and produced with close attention to detail, finishing, heating efficiency and quality. Ortal products combine traditional and modern design with the technology innovation that ensures a green product with high-efficiency ratings. Our advanced technology produces eye-catching fires that are safe, beautiful and economical. The product sophistication allows for installation in more locations inside the home, creating that true “wow” factor.

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// green //

Holiday Greenings ‘Tis the season to respect the environment. Have a happy holiday season while doing your part to help save the planet by following Bullfrog Energy’s seven-point program for holiday conservation. // by: Rita Zenzen Heck


ou could make this holiday season a sustainable landmark and have the best time ever because you’ll be taking a lead in saving the planet. According to Bullfrog Energy, a Canadian company that outlined a seven-point program for holiday conservation, it’s a win-win situation that makes the season more fun for everyone while recycling and rethinking how the season is celebrated to respect the environment.

Living Christmas tree Just one acre of a Christmas tree farm can remove up to 13 tons of air pollution from the atmosphere each year, so consider a live tree this holiday. Better still, choose a growing tree in a decorative pot that you can move outside or plant in the yard. Think Norfolk pine or blue spruce for the San Antonio area. Throwaway trees are recycled into mulch by the city. San Antonio either picks up trees after the holidays or designates a place where they can be taken for recycling.


Light timers These are a good idea year-round inside and out. Timers on indoor and outdoor lighted decorations, as well as on lights throughout the house, save electricity and wear on bulbs. Motion detectors control all indoor and outdoor lighting, turning it on only when someone enters the space. Dimmers control light density and are not only energy efficient, but can change the room mood from full bright to romantic. Timers, dimmers and detectors are inexpensive and available at hardware and home supply stores.


Gift wrap Here’s where your recycle and reuse creativity comes in. According to the Bullfrog report, if every family (in Canada) wrapped with recycled materials, the paper savings would be enough to cover 45,000 football fields. Imagine the amount in the U.S. materials: newspapers, comics, magazine pages, grocery


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man with christmas tree image Elena Elisseeva/


Sustainable Holiday Decorating Tips


Installing motion detectors can help your family conserve electricity by ensuring that the lights come on only when necessary.

Just one acre of a Christmas treee farm can remove up to 13 tonnes of air pollution from the atmosphere annually! Also, many municipalities now offer environmentally friendly tree recycling programs.




Many artificial holiday wreaths are made from plastics and other petroleum-based products and are not recyclable. Use leftover branches and foliage from your own backyard instead!

Bullfrogpowering your home with 100 percent green electricity can reduce your carbon dioxide emissions footprint by 2.4 tonnes annually.*


Did you know that a string of decorative LED lights lasts up to 30 times longer than conventional holiday lights?

3 Biodegradeable tableware is usually made from cornstarch, potato starch or sugarcane and has a lower environmental impact than conventional disposable tableware.

If every family wrapped just three presents with recycled materials, together they would save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields.

6 *This number represents the national average.

bags and holiday waterproof shopping bags (good for mailing, too). Tuck in the handles and use on-hand yarn, rope, etc., to tie fabric to reuse (towels, napkins, fabric scraps, etc.). Also reuse last year’s wrappings.


Lights A string of LED decorative lights lasts up to 30 times longer than conventional lighting and uses less electricity. The same applies to all of the lighting in your home. Switch to LED bulbs, and profit from the difference. They are more expensive upfront, but the long-term savings will more than match the initial cost.


Decorations Most store-bought wreaths and decorations are made from plastics and other petroleum-based products that are not recyclable. Using a grapevine wreath base (from the hobby shop), tuck in a variety of herbs such as rosemary, thyme, sage and oregano, and wrap paddling wire around the finished wreath. You can add pinecones, nuts or other natural products for a custom look. Tie a piece of ribbon or rope at the top, and it’s ready to hang. Use pinecones to hold place cards on the table with stray branches, berry vines, etc., arranged in jars, bottles or vases and blooms from your garden for a centerpiece. To dry pinecones, heat november//december 2013 NHOME /


the oven to 200 degrees, line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spread a single layer of cones. Heat for 30 minutes or until the cones have fully opened. Remove and rest them for a few days before cutting or using in crafts. This process will kill any bugs and melt the sap, which adds sheen to the cone surface. Easy-to-make paper mâché can be fashioned into a wide variety of ornament shapes and sizes using cookie cutters or other forms and paint. Here is a recipe: Ingredients: • 1 cup flour • 1 cup cornstarch • 1 tablespoon salt (to prevent mold) • 1 to 1 1/2 cups cold water • 1 cup white glue (Elmer’s, etc.) Instructions: Combine flour, cornstarch and salt in a large bowl. Add water and mix thoroughly to a creamy, thick batter. Stir in glue, and mix until well combined. Add more water for thinner consistency for smaller items.


Biodegradable tableware If you are not using china, look for disposables made from cornstarch, potato starch or sugarcane, which has a lower environmental impact than conventional disposable tableware.


Forever after Gift yourself and your family with a start on green power. Look for heat pumps that are 16 SEER or above, a couple of solar panels, a tankless water heater and a ductless air conditioner, and give both your utility bill and the environment a break. Happy holidays, and thanks for helping save the planet. ■

Creative Overflow/The Green Connection is located at 201 Barrera in San Antonio, Texas. For more information, contact Rita Zenzen Heck at 210-212-8031 or visit


/ NHOME november//december 2013

A string of LED decorative lights lasts up to 30 times longer than conventional lighting and uses less electricity.

Your Vision Becomes a Reality at Lone Star National Bank Home Mortgage NATASJA FIKE

Mortgage Loan Originator NMLS#513609

Owning your own home, a place to start a family and create memories, is still the American dream. At Lone Star National Bank Home Mortgage we make reaching that dream easier with competitive rates and personal service. Our experienced Mortgage Loan Originators will show you just how easy home buying can be at Lone Star National Bank Home Mortgage.

CLAUDYA GUTIERREZ Mortgage Loan Originator NMLS#208591

1-800-580-0322 I (210) 489-4554 930 Proton Rd. Suite #106 • San Antonio, TX 78258 Offer of credit is subject to credit approval.

november//december 2013 NHOME /


lender profile

Honesty and teamwork are among Crafts’ core values. 58

/ NHOME november//december 2013

Man on a Mission As a self-proclaimed knowledge seeker, Easton Crafts makes it his personal business to create an educated consumer base at Directions Equity Home Loan.

// by: Christian Reed-Ogba // photography: Jason Roberts


aston Crafts. Yes, that is his real name – and it’s completely indicative of the type of super-hero mortgage lending professional he is, as the owner of Directions Equity Home Loan. Born in Brownsville, Crafts has lived in San Antonio since the age of 8. He loves this city, and he has literally watched the Center City and Hill Country real estate markets evolve into flourishing meccas for new businesses, families and legislation. When it comes to mortgages in San Antonio, as an entrepreneur, Crafts makes it his personal business to create an educated consumer base. And from our conversation, it’s evident that he knows what he’s talking about. “I like people to be educated,” he says, “so that whenever they step into the arena of getting a mortgage loan, purchasing a home and getting a very good understanding of rates, [they know] how the interest rate markets are moving and what moves the market.” Crafts himself is a self-proclaimed knowledge seeker who reads quirky news and uses that information to bring interest to conversations with everyone. “Texas is our sandbox that we get to play in,” he says. “There’s so much business [in Texas] that there is no need to lend out of state.” Crafts feels honored to have been so well received for so long – 17 years, to be exact – and he has made it his mission to provide well-rounded service to his clients. According to him, “We’re in an industry that has undergone so much change.” And he’s right: In recent years, the mortgage lending industry has been blamed for the world economic meltdown. But Crafts doesn’t dwell on apologizing. Instead, he continues to provide great information on

how policy changes and a growing list of dos and don’ts affect buyers and lenders. “Texas was one of the last states to allow for home equity loans,” Crafts says. That’s a very conservative outlook for such a fluctuating and load-bearing industry, especially compared to states like California and Florida, where borrowers can acquire up to 125 percent of their home’s equity. This type of lax legislation led to many states getting hit hard by high foreclosure rates. He says that specifically in San Antonio, business growth, low unemployment rates, educated consumers and past and future legislation reform have attributed to the smaller effect the national failures of mortgage lending have had. Honesty and teamwork are among his core values. Crafts and his business partner, Marc Spitzer, launched in 2008 with only one team member (who still works with them in their new roles as a leading mortgage loan company). “There is a big trust factor in our team,” Crafts says. “There is the belief that they are going to get done what our client needs to get done.” Crafts compliments his team’s open-communication approach in problem-solving: “If and when we see issues on a certain file, our team immediately voices them and we work on them together.” And from the traffic of processors and underwriters in and out of his office, he’s very devoted to making sure every possible question about a loan is answered. He says that in the end, when they’ve made up their mind to purchase a home, most buyers aren’t worried about housing market trends. Borrowers want their questions answered; they want fair and unwavering service, and Directions Equity Home

Loan offers that. While rates and fees aren’t necessarily going to alternate if you take your business to a large bank or a private lender like Directions Equity Home Loan, at the end of the day, it boils down to quick closing time and continued personal access to your lender. Where large banks may take up to 90 days to close a loan, Crafts stands by his average timeline of less than a month. Crafts’ success story is intertwined with family. His appreciation for learning no doubt came from his parents, who were both teachers. And his dedication to his business is backed by his wife, Rachel, who works alongside him as the office manager at Directions Equity Home Loan. “From the selfless hours she puts into animal rescue work to the amount of charismatic involvement into our son’s [Noah’s] development, she makes me want to strive for the highest level of productivity.” In the coming months, Crafts is looking forward to more regulations in his industry – some he’s sure will spark dozens of questions and some he’ll be discussing on a trip to Washington, D.C. Serving as the government affairs chair in the local chapter of the National Association of Mortgage Professionals, Crafts will educate members of Congress on the types of qualified mortgage borrower regulation and fee caps that would benefit the economy. He and Directions Equity Home Loan are also continuing their support of the Cocker Spaniel Rescue of Austin and San Antonio and of San Antonio Pets Alive! ■ For more information, contact Easton Crafts at easton@directionsequity. com or 210-257-0642, or visit www. november//december 2013 NHOME /


// finance //

Leaving a Legacy Whether you donate funds, give of your time or simply brighten the lives of others through your daily actions, your act of giving – however modest – will make a difference.

Leg-a-cy (noun): 1. a bequest made in will, money or property that is left to somebody in a will; 2. something from past, something that is handed down or remains from a previous generation or time.


/ NHOME november//december 2013

woman’s hands image Hasloo Group Production Studio/

// by: Linda Rudd


y definition, a legacy is something passed on from one to another, either by inheritance or by teachings such as knowledge, philosophies and traditions. By association, legacies are often deemed something reserved for the wealthy. Names like Andrew Carnegie, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs come to mind. However, upon deeper reflection, there are so many ways to leave a lasting impact on the world. Look at Mother Teresa, who, at the age of 12, decided to commit to a religious life of serving the poor and the sick. She touched millions and continues to long after her death. So this begs the question, “How can everyone leave a legacy?”

San Antonio Area Foundation is an example of this in action. At, you can match your funds with those areas you are passionate about. It was established in 1964 with the funds of individuals, families, businesses and other entities to support charitable causes in our community. The foundation has distributed more than $220 million in scholarships and grants to educate youth, preserve the environment, protect animals, fund research and provide services that enhance the quality of life for people living in and around San Antonio.

Making a conscious choice to be kind and live by example

leaves your imprint on the world.

Where to start

hand sesrving soup image James Steidl/

With your daily actions We have all had those people who have touched our lives because just through their daily actions, they made us better people and left a lasting impression. Offering advice or consolation to a friend, smiling at a stranger in line at the grocery store and buying lunch for a service member in line behind you at a restaurant are all opportunities to impact the lives of others. The scope of the action does not dictate the lasting effect on the recipient. Making a conscious choice to be kind and live by example leaves your imprint on the world. What one thing can you do differently today to change the lives of others? It may not be as difficult as you think.

With your time What better way to make a difference than to give your time? There is not an organization in the nonprofit arena that is not in need of volunteers. Whether it is serving in a food line, stuffing envelopes, man-

ning phones, running in a 5K or just baking a cake for a bake sale, you can get involved and make a lasting difference. Where to start? With the vast resources today, it is as close as the click of a button to see where you can serve. In San Antonio, there is an amazing resource in SA2020. An initiative begun in 2010, it harnesses the resources and energy of both businesses and individuals to make San Antonio a city of impact. The role of SA2020 as a nonprofit is to connect the efforts of individuals, the private sector and government and nonprofit organizations, creating partnerships that focus our energy and resources on achieving the ambitious goals set by the community. All you have to do is visit www.sa2020. org – the needs and opportunities abound.

With your financial support Carnegie was a man of great wealth and accomplishment. He said he spent the first half of his life accumulating wealth and the second half giving it all away. When you stop to think about it, you really can’t take it with you. Whether large or small contributions, it is the act of giving that makes the difference in your life. Making a monthly donation to a cause is such an easy place to start. Whether it is $10 or $1,000, it all adds up. It is no different than setting up automatic withdrawals to your retirement account. Once it is in place, you often don’t even realize it is not in your checking account to spend. On a larger scale, planned giving and charitable foundations are accessible by more than just the ultra-wealthy. The

Think about what you are passionate about. Perhaps you have had a personal experience or tragedy in your life and want to focus your efforts on that cause. Perhaps you want to focus on something you love to do for fun. Or perhaps you love to work with children. It can be as simple as reading to children at your local library. Then start with where you are, with regards to both time and money; do what you can, and don’t worry about what you can’t do. Whether you have a couple of hours per week or $20 per month to contribute, what you do will make a difference. Remember that the act of giving is just as important for the difference it makes on the giver as it is for the difference it makes on the receiver. Don’t wait until later in life to start making a difference. Start leaving your legacy today. ■ Linda L. Rudd, CFP, is a mortgage planner with Legacy Mutual Mortgage, located at 2526 N Loop 1604 W, Ste. 150, in San Antonio, Texas. For more information, contact her at 210-429-4900, ext. 2064, or

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// finance //

Dollars and ‘Sense’ The major factors to consider when it comes to


hether you’ve been considering a home improvement for a while and already have a plan or you are just beginning to think about the idea, some questions you may be asking yourself are: ① How much will this project really cost me? ② How much do I really want to do, and how much do I really need to do? ③ Regardless of how much, how am I going to pay for it all? ④ Will I get my money back out of this when I sell? ⑤ Can I finance this remodel?


/ NHOME november//december 2013

// by: Easton Crafts

If you are really getting serious about a small home improvement project or a major home renovation, these are some common questions you’ve probably asked yourself. While these questions are well warranted, there are some other major factors to consider before you begin a home improvement project:

• Where to allocate the money • Let’s look at the kitchen and bathrooms. A kitchen is the nucleus of the home, and the household revolves around it. Everyone in the household spends time there preparing, cooking and eating food, reading mail, paying bills, doing homework, entertaining guests and so on. Adding features to a kitchen such as new appliances, cabinets and countertops adds value to your home. Bathroom renovations are also very

common. A bathroom gets a lot of use and wear, and it may not be reaching its full, functional potential, which, for example, may require a small renovation to add more storage space. These are also areas that can have a theme to show a different and eccentric look that you might not be so bold to try in other rooms. From plumbing fixtures to flooring and wall color, the bathroom can truly have an identity of its own. The kitchen and the bathroom are two commonly renovated areas of a home to match lifestyle and keep up-to-date with the latest trends in home design.

• Value • Not all home improvements are created equal when it comes to adding value to your home. Your return on investment (ROI) will almost never immediately return 100 percent of what you paid for the actual

woman and money image Andy Dean Photography/

home improvement financing

The good news about home improvements is that they can be financed if needed. improvements to your home. Unlike kitchen and bathroom remodels, which can return value up to 50 to 75 percent (i.e. for every $1,000 you spend on the improvement, you receive $500 to $750 in fair market value of your home), there are other projects that may return less than 25 percent. Adding a new swimming pool, doing too much landscaping or adding new high-end upgrades that are well above the norm for your neighborhood may be a recipe for a low ROI.

Opening Doors to the American Dream

• Time horizon • Will you be enjoying the improvements for years to come, or are they just to get your home prepped for sale in the near future? This should be the biggest factor in your decision on what to do. If you plan on getting your home prepped for sale, you will want to treat your home improvements more like a business decision and have improvements done that will help add the biggest bang for your investment buck, which can include the likes of a kitchen and bathroom remodel. On the other hand, if you plan to exercise the full enjoyment of your home improvements for many years to come, your home improvement selections as related to ROI will not have as much of a direct effect (I refer to this as the personal enjoyment factor).

• Financing • The good news about home improvements is that they can be financed if needed. If you own a home you would like to remodel, you can get a home improvement loan or a home equity loan. If you are looking to purchase a home in need of remodeling or even a home that may not be completed (i.e. the bank foreclosed on the builder in the middle of construction), there are home improvement loans that can be done in concert with the acquisition of the home so it can get remodeled before you move in. Depending on your disposition, there may be more than one loan option for you. Each loan program has different terms, requirements, loan limits and general nuances, so consult a mortgage loan professional if you are in the market to finance some home improvements. Remember that rates are still at historic lows, which increases your borrowing power. ■

For more information about mortgage loans, contact Easton Crafts at or 210-257-0642. You may also visit for online payment calculators, for payment scenarios and to apply online.




DREAM Purchase

Jumbo Loans





• Purchase • Home Equity Home Equity • Refinance • Renovation • Construction • Jumbo Loans Renovation

• Conventional VA • FHA, VA •USDA USDA

Easton Crafts,Easton Crafts, CEO CEO 18730 Stone Oak Pkwy, Ste 208 18730 Stone Oak San Pkwy, Antonio,Ste TX 208 78258 San Antonio, TX 78258 210-257-0642 Ph.Ph. 210-257-0642 NMLS# NMLS# 220151220151

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// arts & culture //

Give the gift of fine art this

season both to support local small businesses and artistic entrepreneurs and to give your loved ones unique pieces that have a truly personal touch.

// by: Gabriel Diego Delgado


/ NHOME november//december 2013


j.r. moonies galleries of art

Fine Art for the Holidays

ine art is often bought and sold as a blue chip expense – an item reserved for special occasions, events, openings and auctions. However, fine art should be considered a gift for loved ones to share in the artistic experience – a perfect present for any occasion, but more importantly, the for ever-encroaching end-of-the-year festivities and holidays. Art can be a reflection of the buyer that pays tribute to the new owner with a personal touch – a purchase that holds a certain integrity that store-bought and mass-produced items do not offer such as a classy acquisition that not only supports the local economic climate, but adds ever-increasing revenue to the Greater San Antonio creative economy by placing the dollars directly into the hands of small businesses and artistic entrepreneurs. San Antonio is rich and alive with artists making work that is both affordable and gift-able in the sense of wall hangings, tabletop sculptures, holiday gifts and handmade crafts. From San Antonio’s First Fridays, Second Saturdays, Second Fridays and Third Saturdays to art walks in Tobin Hill and Beacon Hill and art crawls in Southtown and Boerne, galleries and studios are open to the public by appointment or with regular hours, granting access to these culturally diverse troves for holiday purchase. Plus, galleries like J.R. Mooney Galleries of Fine Art offer complimentary gift-wrapping included with purchase, making the often intimidating gallery experience for any novice a rather appealing one-stop shop in comparison to

zollie glass studio

Fine art should be considered a gift for loved ones to share in the artistic experience. november//december 2013 NHOME /



/ NHOME november//december 2013

photos by russell stephenson

San Antonio is rich and alive with artists making work that is both affordable and gift-able.

big-box department stores. But with the ever-changing climate of where to purchase art through a studio or a gallery, you must know where to begin. Several new venues have gained a certain highlight in today’s San Antonio art community, stores and studios that offer a wide variety of gift ideas, fine art selections and handmade crafts. Mockingbird Gallery and Studio, located at 1420 South Alamo, Building B, Ste. 108, in downtown San Antonio, offers is a new art venue run and owned by San Antonio artist Paula Cox and craftswoman Jane Bishop. Mockingbird offers vintage jewelry, screen-printed, custom-decorated and upholstered furniture and fine art treasures. Collectable handmade and funky pincushions settle in next to wood cuts of Cox’s line drawing animals, while ceramics, recycled tin cuts and letterpress cards, notes and envelopes scatter the store shelves like shabby chic accents – all for sale in a location central to the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum. Mockingbird’s pincushions filled with sand and lavender and various artistic figures range from $25 to $48, while their porcelain ceramics by Dim Sum range from $45 to $65. Look for steals on their vintage jewelry, which is available for $40 to $65, while custom Fat Cat Jewelry, recycled cut tins, earrings and bracelets are reasonably priced at $36 to $60. A breath of fresh air can be found at Zollie Glass Studio, a new contemporary fine art glass store and studio located at 1428 S. Presa, No. 1, in the Blue Star complex. Owner Jake Zollie Harper opened Zollie Glass on the heels of the remodeled arts complex that once housed Stella Haus Gallery, Joan Grona Gallery, Cactus Bra Space, Three Walls and others during his first First Friday in August 2013. Since then, he has hosted various workshops, guest artists, hands-on demonstrations and spontaneous pop-up events. Look for Zollie Glass Studio to have a special Christmas sale complete with extended holiday hours. At Zollie Glass, Zollie Harper al-

photos by louis vega trevino

Here is a current list of galleries and artists’ studios for the 2013 fall season:

ways has a variety of glass artists selling their wares, with a stable roster of five to seven glassblowers making work. Fine Art Glass is the perfect gift for those who might shy away from painting purchases with these precious handmade items completing any gift-giving occasion. Prices are a flux of items for $20 to $4,000. Cleverly priced clear tumblers range from $25 to $30, while signatory “Ice Cups” are $80. Artistic glass sculptures and the coined “spores” sculptures range in size and price from $250 to $3,000. Ask about the custom-made house wares and lighting cover options, including the cherished glass chandeliers at $3,750. San Antonio painter Russell Stephenson offers affordable and small-scale abstract landscape paintings that capture the pure essence of his signature aesthetic. Gold, earth tones and deliberate mark-making mix with minimal compositions that are tied to notions of the sublime. Stephenson’s landscapes complement any color palette, room décor and interior design. With approachable imagery and easily digestible color theory, his work is a no-worry contemporary art purchase that will undoubtedly dazzle everyone from the beginning collector to the seasoned aficionado. His “Panoramic Texas Series” paintings are moderately priced at $600 each, granting access to any buyer a chance to own, collect and cherish this San Antonio painter. Stephenson’s art can be seen at AnArte Gallery in San Antonio, as well as J.R. Mooney Galleries of Fine Art in Boerne. Texas regional minimalist Louis Vega Trevino’s artwork has graced the buildings of the Main Plaza in downtown San Antonio. His strip paintings have hung in Terminal B at the San Antonio Airport, and he has been creating art for the who’s who of architectural firms and their clients for more than 20 years. Trevino’s stripe paintings and geometric post-minimal expressions are a play on color theory and linear perfections mixed with automatic geometry. Bands of color shimmer, shake and vibrate next to complementary hues, making for effective submissions by the viewer to respond to simple color pairing – a shamanistic approach with a minimal aesthetic. Lines, bands and stripes go vertical, horizontal or sideways, often overlapping in an effective composition or rhythm that would accent even the most minimal interior. Accentuating hard interior visual cues and ostentatious lines of overpowering window dressings, countertops, furniture and ceilings, Trevino’s work adds a contemporary charm with bold accents of color that play off any inflexible interior motifs and architectural designs. His small paintings available for the holidays range from $250 to $300. ■

For more information, contact Gabriel Diego Delgado at

AnArte Gallery 7959 Broadway St., No. 404, San Antonio, Texas 78209 210-826-5674 Bihl Haus Arts 2803 Fredericksburg Road., San Antonio, Texas 78201 210-383-9723

Silkworm Projects 1906 S. Flores St. San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-607-1322

ArtPace San Antonio 445 North Main Ave. San Antonio, Texas 78205 210-212-4900

Plazmo Contemporary 1101 West Woodlawn San Antonio, Texas 78201 210-837-0561

Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum 116 Blue Star San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-227-6960

Mockingbird Gallery and Studio / Mockingbird Handprints 1420 South Alamo Building B, Ste. 108 San Antonio, Texas 78210

Grindstone Gallery and Studio 111 Lone Star Blvd. San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-275-5087

Flight Gallery San Antonio 1906 LoneStar Blvd. San Antonio, Texas 78204 Gallery Nord 2009 NW Military Highway San Antonio, Texas 78213 210-348-0088 Gallista Gallery 1913 S. Flores St. San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-212-8606 REM Gallery 219 E. Park Ave. San Antonio, Texas 78212 210-224-1227 Lady Base Gallery (Inside Gallista Gallery) 1913 S. Flores St. San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-212-8606 UTSA Texan Cultures 801 César E. Chavez Blvd. San Antonio, Texas 78233 210-458-2300 Gravelmouth Gallery 1906 S. Flores St. San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-367-2528

Zollie Glass Studio 1428 S. Presa, No. 1 San Antonio, Texas 78210 210-601-3883 Hello Studios and Gallery (Blue Star Arts Complex) 1420 South Alamo, No. 106, Building B San Antonio, Texas 78210 210-291-8640 R Gallery 110 E. Lachapelle San Antonio, Texas 78204 210-793-8899 Centro Cultural Aztlan 1800 Fredericksburg Road, Ste. 103 San Antonio, Texas 78201 210-432-1896 Mercury Projects 538 Roosevelt San Antonio, Texas 78210 210-478-9133 Sala Diaz 517 Stieren San Antonio, Texas 78210 972-900-0047

107 Lonestar (Curated by Lullwood Group) 107 Lonestar Blvd. San Antonio, Texas 78204 Clamp Light Artists Studios and Gallery 706 Fredericksburg Road San Antonio, Texas 78202 High Wire Arts 326 W. Josephine St. San Antonio, Texas 78212 210-320-570 Carriage House Gallery 110 Rosewood Ave. Boerne, Texas 78006 830-248-1184 COSAS 1109 S. Main St., No. 1 Boerne, Texas 78006 830-249-1500 Texas Fine Art Treasures 605 S. Main St. Boerne, Texas 78006 830-816-5335 J.R. Mooney Galleries (Boerne) 305 S. Main St. Boerne, Texas 78006 830-816-5106 J.R. Mooney Galleries (San Antonio) 8302 Broadway St. San Antonio, Texas 78209 210-828-8214

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// great escapes //

Holidays on the River Walk Take in the sights and sounds of the holiday season in scenic

downtown San Antonio. // by: Margaux Huckabay


/ NHOME november//december 2013

photos by semon tam


he holidays are a time for rest and relaxation, with kids out of school and family and friends in town visiting. Take advantage of the time off and enjoy many of the holiday activities on and around the San Antonio River Walk. Perhaps the best way to take in the sights and sounds of the holiday season is a boat ride with Rio San Antonio Cruises. The friendly and knowledgeable Rio Cruises tour guide will engage you in a rich narrative history of the River Walk while you enjoy the sights of the Christmas lights and the sounds of holiday carolers. Or you can enjoy a more intimate experience with a private charter available for dinner or cocktails. And don’t forget to take a Rio taxi ride into the Museum Reach to take in the beautifully landscaped addition to the River Walk. For more information, please call Rio San Antonio Cruises at 210-244-5700. From Dec. 6 through Jan. 3, experience the San Antonio River Authority (SARA) Museum Reach River of Lights at The Pearl. Beginning at the turning basin near Grayson Street and flowing southward to Lexington Avenue, this 1.3-mile stretch of the river will come alive in an array of colors and lighting. Experience more than 100 underwater lights, fiber optic lights throughout many of the water features, LED rope lighting crossing from one side of the river to the other, light posts wrapped in LED holiday lights and much more. River of Lights will kick-off with “Santa’s Rockin’ River of Lights,” co-produced by the Paseo del Rio Association, on Dec. 6 and 7. Have your picture taken with Santa

Claus and Mrs. Claus on a decorated river barge for free, and bring your camera and listen to live entertainment! Expect to see even more lights this year with added lights in the trees. For more information, visit Back on the horseshoe of the River Walk, join visitors from around the world in impromptu sing-a-longs from the Patio’s of River Walk restaurants during the threeweek Ford Holiday Boat Caroling. Joyous caroling fills the evening air along the San Antonio River Walk in December as more than 185 school, church, company and civic choral groups ring in the holidays by singing traditional carols on cruising boats. Ford Holiday Boat Caroling takes place from 6:15 p.m. to 9:15 p.m. nightly from Dec. 4 through Dec. 22. Spots are still available, so grab a group of friends, family or coworkers and reserve your barge now! The cost is $125 for Sunday through Thursday, and $150 for Friday and Saturday. Call 210-227-4262 to make reservations. The Ford Fiesta de las Luminarias, held the first three Fridays through Sundays in December, will enhance the atmosphere as warmly glowing candles in sand-filled bags line the walkways of the River Walk. More than 2,000 luminarias are lit each night

The 55-foottall white fir Christmas tree in Alamo Plaza will be adorned with more than 110,000 LED lights and 450 ornaments this season.

during this centuries-old tradition that symbolizes the lighting of the way for the Holy Family. Off the River Walk, make sure to check out the 55-foot-tall white fir Christmas tree taking center stage in Alamo Plaza during the holiday season. The tree, a gift from local grocer H-E-B, will be adorned with more than 110,000 LED lights and 450 ornaments. Finish up some holiday shopping at the Holiday Arts & Crafts Show on Dec. 13 through 15. Located on the River Walk near the Chamber of Commerce, participating vendors display some of the most unique handmade merchandise available anywhere. Whether it’s jewelry, pottery or fine art you are interested in, you are sure to find what you’re looking for. Enjoy a stroll along the picturesque River Walk, stop to talk to our vendors who are anxious to share information about their craft and take home an item that is sure to brighten up a loved one’s holidays! ■

For more information on any of these fun holiday events, call the Paseo del Rio Association at 210-227-4262 or visit www. november//december 2013 NHOME /


// active adult living //

Holidays at The Towers The Towers makes the season special for residents by helping them enjoy holiday traditions both old and new with festive parties and entertainment. // by: Allyson Seipp


veryone has their own traditions when it comes to holiday celebrations. Whether it is decorating your house, baking cookies or celebrating with family and friends, the holidays are a special time for everyone. Many clients who come to The Towers are apprehensive because of the thought of losing the familial connection, especially during the holidays. The Towers recognizes this trepidation with its incoming residents and takes great strides to prevent the holiday blues. To kick off the holiday season at The Towers, our resident services department begins adorning the community in holiday twinkle and charm. Throughout every part of the community, the festive music splendor of Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin is heard. From the beautiful Christmas figurines set on tables throughout the community to the wreaths that are hung from the second-floor guest balconies, The Towers is sure to invoke everyone’s holiday cheer. The Towers holds the annual tree-trimming party at the beginning of December. This is a time when the residents can gather

with their friends and family to continue the traditions started in their own homes. A 15-foot Christmas tree is strung up with sparkling lights and shiny Christmas ornaments. All of our residents take turns adding ornaments to the tree and taking spins on the dance floor to holiday music. Homemade dishes from the residents’ kitchens line the lobby and help carry on the culinary traditions from holidays past. To continue the holiday season, The Towers is filled with festive entertainment, residents’ holiday parties and visiting family staying in guest rooms. There are two types of family at The Towers: family you are born with and family you make when you move to The Towers. The collective resident support is what creates new families every day, and it’s the new and old families who make holidays at The Towers a special time for everyone. ■

Allyson Seipp is a sales counselor for The Towers. For more information, call 210-805-6276 or visit

family you are born with and family you make when you move to The Towers.


/ NHOME november//december 2013

holiday decor image Beata Becla/

There are two types of family at The Towers:

Take Ownership of Your Active Lifestyle…

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San Antonio, TX 78209 I n d e p e n d e n t

The convenience of city living and the quiet charm of a resort lifestyle flow together at The Towers on Park Lane. Conveniently located near Alamo Heights, Ft. Sam Houston and downtown San Antonio. The Towers is surrounded by fine dining, The Quarry shopping center, and is the prime location for an active lifestyle. The Towers caters to both civilian and military individuals age 50 and over.

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Penthouse Club Overlooking Downtown San Antonio 4.5 Acre Park with Walking Paths and Garden Beds Heated Indoor Swimming Pool & Whirlpool Wellness Center with Weekly Classes Restaurant-Style Dining Room & Casual Deli Daily Resident Activities & Clubs

Call us for questions and to schedule your private consultation. Let our staff help you make your move to The Towers a smooth transition.

210-822-8722 ✤

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// community inspiration //

A Warm Welcome H-E-B salutes and supports our wounded warriors with its Operation Appreciation campaign, recently partnering with Operation Finally Home to gift two deserving military families with new, mortgage-free homes. // by: Sonya Edmondson Georgeff


aving grown up as an Air Force brat, I understand the sacrifices the men and women in the U.S. armed forces and their families make every day, year in and year out, to serve our country and preserve freedom around the world. They are some of the most amazing, and yet most humble, people in the world. In June, I had the great privilege of joining fellow H-E-B partners (what we call our employees) in welcoming two of these valiant wounded warriors and their families to their new homes as part of H-E-B’s Operation Appreciation campaign. H-E-B partnered with Operation


/ NHOME november//december 2013

Finally Home to help two deserving military families get their lives back on track with brand-new homes in San Antonio. H-E-B partners and community volunteers to put finishing touches on the homes, including landscaping, painting, assembling fixture, building playground equipment and filling the pantry with non-perishable items. The McCrillis and Brown families found out less than 24 hours before that they were getting new, mortgage-free homes! Our large group of H-E-B partners in red H-E-B Helping Here shirts, joined by employees of Pulte/Centex Homes, which built the new homes, as well as neighbors from the subdivision, prepared to welcome them

home. With H-E-B’s Military Appreciation truck positioned in front of the homes, we lined the streets and practiced waving our American flags and chanting, “Move that truck!” Extreme Makeover: Home Edition-style while we waited for the families to arrive. Many people in the crowd had ties to the military. Two H-E-B partners, Valerie Huizar and Ruby Heritage, brought their friend, Christy Saenz, with them to support the families. Saenz wore a pin and a dog tag in remembrance of her husband, Jose, who was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2010. I thanked her for her husband’s service and sacrifice. Another H-E-B partner, Jeremy Porterie, got off his overnight shift, put on his Army Reserves uniform and came out to salute the families and welcome them to their homes. Finally, we commenced cheering and flag-waving as three Operation Finally Home vehicles drove up with the families and parked behind the H-E-B truck. We chanted, “Move that truck!” and the truck pulled away, revealing the new homes to the McCrillis and Brown families. Both families were overcome with emotion as they cut the ribbons and went inside to tour their new homes. John Karl McCrillis served in the U.S. Army Special Forces Division in Afghanistan. In 2011, he was severely wounded when he sustained two gunshot wounds while pulling wounded comrades to safety. He and his lovely young wife and

“You didn’t just change my life; you’ve changed my daughters’ lives and the generations of my family to come.” november//december 2013 NHOME /


baby daughter had been living with his mother-in-law. After their house tour, both spoke to those assembled about how thankful they were for the new home and how much it would help them financially, considering their medical and other bills. He also made sure to mention his many fellow veterans who could use similar support and assistance. Next door, the Brown family came out to thank everyone in attendance. Nicholas Brown spoke with a lilting British accent. He had already adopted the United States as his country and was going through the immigration process when 9/11 happened. Coming from a military family back home, he “knew what needed to be done” and joined the Army. Since 2003, he has served three tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan as an Army specialist. He was serving in the Wounded Warrior Battalion, and he his wife, and their 8- and 9-year-old daughters planned to move to San Antonio upon his discharge. Brown spoke eloquently about his struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder, and how so many other veterans need support and assistance, and he thanked everyone involved in building the home, saying, “You didn’t just change my life; you’ve changed my daughters’ lives and the generations of my family to come.” As he finished speaking, his daughter, Jordan, surprised everyone by saying, “I have something to say. Thank you, everyone, for our new home.” That sweet thankyou brought everyone to tears. As we left, we all talked about what an amazing morning we’d had welcoming these wounded warriors home. I’m always proud to be an H-E-B partner, but I’m especially proud of everything H-E-B is doing for the men, women and families of our U.S. armed forces through our Operation Appreciation campaign. ■

To learn more about H-E-B, visit www.


/ NHOME november//december 2013

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november//december 2013 NHOME /


// community inspiration //

Paying it Forward

Small-town country comes to country elegance: Meet Don and Leslie Powers, a couple greatly blessed with wealth who always make it a point to give back to their community.

// by: Kim Young


/ NHOME november//december 2013


oakum, Texas, is located in Lavaca County in South Central Texas and there’s oil in them there hills, so we have discovered thanks to the Eagle Ford Shale. Stories of overnight wealth fascinate me, and Don and Leslie Powers were gracious enough to tell me theirs. Don is a humble and Godly man with a degree from Texas A&M. As I am a Red Raider, we didn’t discuss football. Leslie was an elementary school teacher, Sunday school teacher and musician for their local church. They hail from Yoakum, as you might have guessed. They spent 35 years living near friends and family. Don became a postman after leaving the USDA, and Leslie taught first- and second-graders and even gave private piano lessons from home for a time. Don and Leslie were happy and healthy, but there were a few frills, so they decided to sell the drought-stricken section of the family land in Gonzales County that they had accumulated over the years and move to the Fair Oaks area. During the sale negotiations, mineral rights were discussed, but they ended up retaining them, never guessing in their wildest dreams what God had planned. Don’s favorite scripture is Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord; “plans to prosper you and not to harm you – plans to give you hope and a future.” And as they say, the rest is history. As was common just a few years ago, they were contacted by landmen with EOG and ConocoPhillips. The negotiations were made, the contracts were signed and the drilling began. Never again would their lives be the same. One thing you will always find, as a rule, is that people who have been greatly blessed give back greatly. Don and Leslie are not an exception to that rule. One of Leslie’s favorite ministries is Operation Christmas Child, which is a ministry project of Samaritan’s Purse, a non-denominational humanitarian organization. “After sharing the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37), Jesus said, ‘Go and do likewise.’” The mission of Samaritan’s Purse is to do just that: “to follow the

example of Christ by helping those in need and proclaiming the hope of the gospel.” Operation Christmas Child began in 1993. More than 100 million boys and girls from over 130 countries have experienced the love of God in “shoebox gifts.” Samaritan’s Purse coordinates with local churches and ministry partners who reach out and share the “life-changing good news of Jesus Christ.” Don and Leslie found their future neighborhood a few years back on the drive home from Abilene after spending Thanksgiving with Don’s family. Following the new development signs, they came across Stone Creek in Fair Oaks Ranch. They attended the Street of Dreams luxury home show in April 2011. They chose Trinity Custom Builders, who came highly recommended to them. It has been a perfect fit from the builder to Brady Lawn & Landscape and Pool Concepts to LLB Interiors, who designed the beautiful home. They could

not say enough good things about all of those who worked so hard to build and create the home of their dreams. “We made friends with everyone who worked in our home.” It’s been quite a ride, according to Don and Leslie. Don was a bit concerned at one point that a postman from Yoakum might not fit into this luxury neighborhood. But one evening, as they were in the construction phase, he was walking around the house when a neighbor, whose house was also under construction, came across the street. As they exchanged pleasantries, Don mentioned he was moving from Yoakum. Wouldn’t you know it: His neighbor had been born in Yoakum and still had relatives there. They took that as a definite sign that they were home. ■

To learn more about Operation Christmas Child and Samaritan’s Purse, visit www.

More than 100 million kids from over 130 countries have experienced the love of God in “shoebox gifts” thanks to Operation Christmas Child. november//december 2013 NHOME /




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november//december 2013 NHOME /


// events //

Making Dreams Come True NHOME and Mike Hollaway Custom Homes support St. Jude Children’s Hospital and raffle off tickets to win the extraordinary St. Jude Dream Home. // by: Chloe Gil // photography: Manuel Serrata


n Oct. 29, NHOME hosted a mixer with Mike Hollaway Custom Homes in celebration of the St. Jude Dream Home built by Mike Hollaway and other generous supporters for the sole purpose of raising money to support St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Guests purchased raffle tickets for a chance to win this extraordinary house.  It was an enjoyable night for realtors, designers, investors and several other businesses and friends as we helped raise money for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, one of the world’s premier pediatric cancer research centers. Thank you to all who contributed to this evening. Because of such continued support, no family ever receives a bill for their child’s care at St. Jude Children’s Hospital. ■


/ NHOME november//december 2013

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// events //

Business and Pleasure

SWBC Mortgage-La Cantera celebrates its grand opening within The Shops at La Cantera. // by: Ashley Bradford


ongratulations and best of luck to SWBC Mortgage-La Cantera! On Oct. 16 and 17, SWBC Mortgage-La Cantera celebrated its grand opening with nearly 400 attendees over two nights. Nestled in The Shops at La Cantera, the boutique-style office houses 14 employees and Branch Manager Jim McKissick. “It’s been an exciting road traveled to the opening of the SWBC-La Cantera,” McKissick says. “We joined SWBC in June 2009. Two years later, in the fall of 2011, we opened the Leon Springs Branch with four employees, which grew to 14, enabling us to relocate to La Cantera in June 2013.” In the past two years, branch loan volume has increased to $5 million per month – a 200 percent increase from two years ago. In July, we celebrated a record month with a volume of $6.9 million. “Our goal is to provide a comfortable and warm environment for employees, industry partners and clients. We chose La Cantera because we wanted a great location for our employees to work and enjoy their surroundings. Our ‘modern gallery’ feel and naturally landscaped garden courtyard has access to shops and restaurants, making it the perfect mix of business and pleasure.” ■

Ashley Bradford is the marketing programs developer for SWBC.


/ NHOME november//december 2013

“Custom home building is an art. I strive to create exclusive designs and features, integrating quality materials and craftsmanship to build a home that reflects your personality and lifestyle needs.” - Mike Hollaway President

Unparalleled Knowledge and Expertise

Established in 1992, Mike Hollaway Custom Homes has received expansive recognition with some of the most prestigious awards in custom home building for exceptional craftsmanship and design innovation. With more than 30 years of industry knowledge and expertise, Mike Hollaway holds the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) designations of Graduate Master Builder (GMB) and Certified Green Professional (CGP). Awards of distinction include: 1998 Distinguished Single-Family Builder of the Year, 2008 Builder of the Year and numerous Texas Star Awards, Summit Awards and The Greater San Antonio Builders Association (GSABA) Parade of Homes Awards, including People’s Choice, and Realtor’s Choice Awards.

Mike Hollaway, President 2511 N. Loop 1604 W., Suite 200 San Antonio, Texas 78258 210.490.0069 november//december 2013 NHOME /


// events // Dan Diepenhorst and others from Legacy Mutual Mortgage

The PT50 Realtors White Party Platinum Top 50 Realtors of San Antonio hosted a White Party for its members on Sept. 26 at ZaZa Gardens. Based on sales production and philanthropy, PT50 Realtors qualify for membership and represent San Antonio’s finest residential professionals. ■ For more information, visit

Denise and Bill Graves

Denise Smith and Cindy Mitchell

Linda Rudd, Haley Catlett and Lisa Arlett

Ellen Stephens, Cindy Wilks and Patrick Wilks

Amber Thomas and Kelly Maizel

Craig Ross, Libby Ross, Wade Phillips, JoHelen Clark and Ken Davis


/ NHOME november//december 2013

Miriam Guajardo Resendez, Kelly Kenigstein-Maizel, Adaku Okoro and Chloe Gil

photos by Light Catcher Photography

Highland Homes

JOIN US WHERE THE SEASON MEETS THE SEA Come play in real snow at our newest addition SnowWorld, presented by Coca-Cola. With new attractions and themed areas of the park, there’s more lights and décor than ever before. SeaWorld’s animal stars join in the festivities with special holiday shows, including Clyde & Seamore’s Countdown to Christmas and Shamu Christmas Miracles. Coasters, caroling and cups of cocoa make Christmas Celebration a tradition your whole family will enjoy.


PAy fOR A DAy AND GET NOW THROUGH 2014 fREE. Buy yours at or visit the park. Not valid with any other offers, promotions, discounts. Other restrictions apply. © 2013 SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved.

// events //

On the Move Real estate professionals learn rock star moves at the Rock Your Sales Rally 2013 in San Antonio. Special to NHOME


ver wonder what makes one salesperson rock and another one roll? Sales and marketing professionals recently learned how to rock, roll and move like Jagger at a recent motivational seminar called Rock Your Sales Rally arranged by the Sales and Marketing Council of the Greater San Antonio Builders Association. The Rock Your Sales Rally featured John A. Palumbo, an international author, speaker and master closer; Meredith Oliver, a digital specialist; and Melinda Brody, a mystery shopping specialist. The half-day motivational rally and seminar was sponsored by Bella Vista Homes, Mid America Mortgage, Ana Kennedy – BBVA Compass, Smith Print,, New Home Guide, the Schrader Group – RE/MAX Associates, Pilgrim Mortgage, SmartTouch Interactive, NHOME Texas and Move Smart Solutions by Move Up America. “The rally taught us how to build a relationship with different buyers at various points of contact,” said Cheri C. Bass, director of sales and marketing for Sitterle Homes. “We learned that communication is key. Because we’re seeing more buyers in the market, we have more opportunities to practice rock star skills. And it helps that we’re in San Antonio – the heart of Texas.” The Sales and Marketing Council of the Greater San Antonio Builders Association sponsored the high-energy rally to inspire sales and marketing professionals and realtors. Homes sales in the San Antonio area in August were up 15 percent over August 2012 – which is good news for buyers, sellers and wannabe rock stars. ■


/ NHOME november//december 2013

“The rally taught us how to build a relationship with different buyers at various points of contact.�

november//december 2013 NHOME /


// events //

The Holidays Across Texas Whether you opt for industry-focused events, family fun for a great cause or a little of both, the Lone Star State has a wide variety of festive ways you can deck the halls this season.

Nov. 23 – Dec. 31

SeaWorld Christmas Celebration SeaWorld San Antonio is decking the halls for its annual Christmas celebration, a magical holiday program offered on scheduled operating days from Nov. 23 through Dec. 31. Enjoy stunning live shows and sip hot cocoa as you stroll through a sea of Christmas lights. And check out their newest addition, SnowWorld, where you can play in real snow! The SeaWorld Christmas Celebration is a tradition the whole family will enjoy. For more information, call 800-700-7786.

Nov. 25

Santa’s Holiday Parade at North Star Mall Welcomes Santa and Special Guest Broadway’s Grinch The Santa parade at North Star Mall signals the start of the Christmas season. On Nov. 25, Santa will be joined by the Grinch from Broadway’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical,” a marching band, beloved mascot characters, elves and children, making the event the perfect mix of fantasy and excitement. Shoppers are encouraged to share in the fun, join the magic of the season and welcome Santa to San Antonio. The parade


/ NHOME november//december 2013

starts at 10 a.m. at Macy’s, winds its way through the mall and concludes at Santa’s Court in the Saks Fifth Avenue wing, lower level. Call 210-340-6627 for more information.

Nov. 28

Thanksgiving Day Parade Houston’s new and improved Thanksgiving Day parade, “Houston on Parade,” is set for Nov. 28, 2013. This year’s parade will pay tribute to Houston by showcasing the city’s finest from fashion, food and heroes to culture, sports and talent. Gates open at 7 a.m., with the parade starting at 9 a.m. in downtown Houston. For more information, log on to

Nov. 29

Ford Holiday River Parade The Ford Holiday River Parade is a floating parade of approximately 25 professionally decorated and lighted river barges. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the parade, produced by the Paseo del Rio Association, a nonprofit association that produces more than 22 events on the River Walk throughout the year. The Ford Holiday River Parade always falls on the day after Thanksgiving, which means this year’s parade is on Friday, Nov. 29,

2013. The parade is from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., and it will be preceded by the lighting ceremony, during which 1.4 million Christmas lights are turned on along the River Walk. For more information, visit

Nov. 29 – Dec. 22

“The Nutcracker” Everyone’s favorite holiday ballet is deep in the heart of Texas this season, and tickets are on sale now! Tchaikovsky’s beloved masterpiece is as much a part of the season as cookies and eggnog, and it’s part of a tradition that’s been handed down from parents to children for 120 years. Bring your kids and enjoy the ballet at the Majestic Theatre or the Lila Cockrell Theatre in San Antonio, Texas, this November and December. Show times start on Nov. 29 and last through Dec. 22. Buy your tickets online at before they sell out!

Dec. 5

Holiday Mingle Jingle at The Shops at La Cantera The Holiday Mingle Jingle at The Shops at La Cantera is the shopping shindig of the season! Enjoy cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, a little socializing and a lot of shopping from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 5.

Nov. 25

Exclusive holiday offers including special discounts, special services such as engraving, gift with purchase, complimentary gift-wrap, product demonstrations and enter-to-win and fabulous prizes abound. Tickets are $40 per person in advance and $50 at the door (cash only). All ticket sales benefit local charities. Go to www. for more information.

Dec. 21 & 22

Cowboy Christmas at Enchanted Springs Ranch Celebrate Christmas at the ranch for a day! Open Saturday, Dec. 21, and Sunday, Dec. 22, there is plenty to come check out. There will be activities for all ages. To name a few, there will be puppet shows, stick pony races, pedal tractor races, cowboy skits, a kids’ playground, craft tables, a live interactive nativity scene and tractor rides through Wild Animal Park. Food and other goodies will be available, along with a variety of merchants set up to help you finish your last-minute Christmas shopping. There’s something for the whole family. Contact the Enchanted Springs Ranch team at 830-249-8222 for more information.

Has been working with luxury home buyers and sellers achieving their real estate goals in the San Antonio/ Hill Country market since 1999. Call her today!

Dec. 6

Mayor’s Holiday Celebration Join the city of Houston on Friday, Dec. 6, for the Mayor’s Holiday Celebration and the lighting of the “Official Holiday Tree.” The festive show is a holiday tradition of music, Santa and family fun. This holiday tradition will be on the upper plaza at City Hall, located at 901 Bagby, at 6 p.m., with tree lighting and fireworks at 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Go to for more details.

Dec. 11

Building for the Future: How Wood Contributes to Sustainable Construction On Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013, WoodWorks will discuss how wood contributes to sustainable construction. This seminar is intended for engineers, architects, builders and others with an interest in the environmental performance of non-residential and multi-family buildings. The program will be held at Morton’s Steakhouse, and it will begin at 11 a.m. and conclude at 2 p.m. Parking is free, but get there early to check in. Contact Dawn at 404-3944197 or for more information.

Kim Young

Dec. 23 & Dec. 30

Moscow Ballet’s “Great Russian Nutcracker” Start making traditions this Christmas! The “Great Russian Nutcracker” will be at the Majestic Theatre on Monday, Dec. 23, at 4 and 8 p.m., and Monday, Dec. 30, at 7 p.m. One of San Antonio’s favorites, Moscow Ballet will be featuring awardwinning Russian dancers, as well as solo dances by ambassadors from Hispanic, African, Russian, Asian and European heritages. Tickets start at $28. Groups of 10 or more receive discounts by calling 800-320-1733. For tickets, call Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.

KimYoung Broker/Associate Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Bradfield Properties


november//december 2013 NHOME /


Letters to the Publisher In celebration of our second anniversary, NHOME Texas magazine

Dear Adaku: Congratulations on the anniversary of NHOME magazine. The magazine is very professional and provides fantastic information and opportunities surrounding our communities. You and your staff make a huge difference with your expertise and positive influence. We look forward to a continued business relationship and to the next anniversary. Cheers!  Michael Saenz Banking Center Manager, V.P. Lone Star National Bank (Stone Oak Branch)

Dear Adaku: As a potential homebuyer, I found NHOME to be an important and essential guide. I am pleased to see how informative NHOME is of up-and-coming communities in the San Antonio and surrounding areas. I enjoyed how NHOME displayed up-todate, detailed and vibrant pictures of communities, homes and amenities available. I believe realtor listings to be a vital link to the communities listed and appreciate how NHOME provided valuable resources and listings of experienced and knowledgeable realtors familiar with the area. I am able to have a holistic view of life within the communities due to the plentiful amount of information provided and warm descriptions of the homes and beautiful areas of San Antonio. I always find NHOME to be an enjoyable read. Estella Ibarra Master of Social Work

Dear Adaku: I first learned of NHOME magazine through a friend. When I stated I hadn’t heard of the publication, I didn’t realize it was going to get me the latest issue, as well as the previous two issues. Since then, I have not only attended a mixer, I have also found myself looking for the latest issue when shopping. Filled with great editorials, inspirational stories and upcoming events, and showing the best living spaces the city has to offer, NHOME magazine has become one of my favorite publications. Keep up the good work! Majestic Events by Maria 503 E. Ramsey, Ste. 103 San Antonio, Texas 78216


Dear Adaku: NHOME has been such a great source of exposure for my company. You guys target to the right audience, your content is relevant and your picture quality of all the properties in the magazine are first class. Through advertising with NHOME, Directions Equity Home Loan has received leads and referrals that clearly justify our investment. I want to extend a sincere thank you to you and the NHOME family for playing a vital part in Directions Equity’s growth.   Thank you,   Easton Crafts CEO, Directions Equity Home Loan 18730 Stone Oak Parkway, Ste. 208 San Antonio, Texas 78258

/ NHOME november//december 2013

Dear Adaku: I just wanted to say it was a pleasure meeting you and thank you for making the latest mixer such a special event and getting behind the St. Jude Dream Home. Good luck with the magazine – Angie and I had a great time.   Warm regards,   Neale C. D. Parker Development Director– San Antonio American Lung Association (Plains-Gulf Region)

mailbox image hd connelly/

is proud to share some positive feedback we’ve recently received from some of our valued clients, readers and friends.

110 Gallery Circle, San Antonio TX, 78258 (210) 428.2770 - 428.2771 Fax (210) 428.2772 november//december 2013 NHOME /



/ NHOME november//december 2013

NHOME Texas Magazine Nov/Dec 2013  
NHOME Texas Magazine Nov/Dec 2013