March 2014 Newsletter

Affording Home Ownership
Sort of a funny sounding phrase isn’t it.  One might immediately think, “if I can afford the payments on a home, I can afford to own a home”.  But there’s far more than monthly payments that determine the ability to afford a home.  What about home insurance, taxes and routine repairs?  And when energy prices are as high as they have been this winter, what about utility costs?  All of these are necessary elements of home ownership.  And, since most of these extra expenses are requirements, they are prioritized accordingly.  But  home repairs…those are expenses that are often put on the back burner.  Can we really afford to put off the maintenance of our homes though?  For most of us our home is our single, largest investment. As such, it is certainly in our best interest to stay current on maintenance and even be proactive to prevent more expensive repairs and problems. Yet, we procrastinate.  This tendency in all of us to delay some expenses is why lenders require us to carry insurance on our homes and automobiles.  It’s also why we do annual inspections in Johanna Woods.  Replacing a broken window or torn screen is not terribly expensive.  However, Ignoring a broken window and allowing rain to damage a window sill can result in a very expensive repair.  Staying current on home maintenance is one of the things that keeps Johanna Woods from looking like a “trailer park”.  It’s also a big part of being able to “afford” home ownership!

Are You Storm Ready?
The changing seasons make stormy weather a fact of life in Oklahoma.  Last year our state experienced devastating storms and a large tornado touched down in our own city, just a couple of miles from us.  With that in mind, it’s time to start thinking about storm safety again.  Here are things to consider:  1) Watch the weather!  Everyone MUST be aware of weather conditions! Seeking shelter BEFORE the sirens sound is a good idea.  At some point the doors to the shelters may have to be locked and we want everyone inside BEFORE then. 2) Pets are NOT allowed in the storm shelters.  3)  If you have kids who are home alone in the afternoon be sure they know what to do.  4)  Know in advance where you will shelter.  Everyone has been directed to a specific place.  If you are unsure of your location, please call the office for a reminder.   Let’s hope for the best this Spring, but be prepared for whatever we get!

Neighbor News
Wow!  Like flowers in Spring, new neighbors are showing up all around Johanna Woods!  We always hope that our residents will introduce themselves to the new folks around them and make them feel welcome.  A bit of kindness and friendship goes a long way when you are trying to settle into a new neighborhood.  Cookies are optional 🙂

Our American Heritage
“If men of wisdom and knowledge, of moderation and temperance, of patience, fortitude and perseverance, of sobriety and true republican simplicity of manners, of zeal for the honour of the Supreme Being and the welfare of the commonwealth; if men possessed of these other excellent qualities are chosen to fill the seats of government, we may expect that our affairs will rest on a solid and permanent foundation.”  Samuel Adams in a letter to Elbridge Gerry in 1780
“The aim of every political constitution is, or ought to be, first to obtain for rulers men who possess most wisdom to discern, and most virtue to pursue, the common good of the society; and in the next place, to take the most effectual precautions for keeping them virtuous whilst they continue to hold their public trust.”
James Madison, Federalist No. 57—1788
“Nothing so strongly impels a man to regard the interest of his constituents, as the certainty of returning to the general mass of the people, from whence he was taken, where he must participate in their burdens.”
George Mason, from his speech in the Virginia Ratifying Convenetion-1788
“The natural cure for an ill-administration, in a popular or representative constitution, is a change of men.”
Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 21—1787

Just For Laughs…Toddler Rules
If I like it, it’s mine.
If it’s in my hands, it’s mine
If I can take it from you, it’s mine.
If I had it a week ago, it’s mine.
If it’s mine, it must never appear to be yours again.
If it looks just like mine, it’s mine.
If I think it’s mine, it’s mine.
If it’s near me, it’s mine.
If it’s broccoli…it’s yours!

Cook’s Corner
Mini Chicken Pot Pies
Ingredients:    Chicken Mixture—
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces
1 tablespoon oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 cup frozen peas and carrots
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Baking Mixture—
1/2 cup Bisquick® mix
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
Directions:  Heat oven to 375°F and spray regular size muffin pan with cooking spray.  Heat oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat and cook the chicken pieces for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally until chicken is no longer pink in center.  Add chopped onion and chicken broth to skillet and heat to simmering.  Add frozen vegetables and seasonings and continue to heat until hot and most liquid is absorbed.  Cool for 5 minutes and stir in cheese.  In a medium bowl, stir baking mixture ingredients with a whisk or fork until blended.  Spoon 1 scant tablespoon of baking mixture into each muffin cup.  Top with about 1/4 cup chicken mixture.  Spoon 1 tablespoon baking mixture onto chicken mixture in each muffin cup.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool 5 minutes, then use a thin knife to loosen the sides of the pies from the pan.  Remove and place, top sides up on cooling rack for 10 minutes, then serve.  Yummy!

Community Calendar
March 1st—Rent is Due
March 6th—Rent is late and subject to a $25.00 late fee
March 9th—Daylight Saving Time begins….Move your clocks forward one hour before you go to bed on the 8th!