Sonja Jones

Sonja Jones is a Founding Member and Managing Broker of Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty. Sonja attributes high client satisfaction to over twenty three years’ experience in real estate, the majority spent in Washington’s Puget Sound market, combined with her personal yet professional service philosophy. Contact Sonja today to find your perfect island home – satisfaction assured.

A Perfect PNW Spring Day on Bainbridge Island

Trying out life on island time does wonders for the soul.

There’s nothing like a sunny spring day in the Pacific Northwest. The temperature is comfortable, the sun is shining, and there’s such a variety of things to do that you’ll never have a dull moment! Today, we’re exploring a day on Bainbridge Island—where time moves just a little slower, and people savor the moment and enjoy lasting memories.

Depending on where you’re starting your day from, you may need to take a ferry ride over to the Island. This trip averages 30 minutes and can be done by car, foot, or bicycle. You may elect to grab a cup of coffee or a light snack on board as you sit on the view deck and enjoy the marvelous views of the sound. In no time at all, you’ll have arrived at the terminal and will start your short walk up to Winslow Way—the heart of the Island’s activity.

On Winslow Way, you’ll see a collection of local businesses ranging from bookstores to restaurants with friendly individuals at each door ready to greet you. A charming way to start the morning is to grab a pastry and either your first or second cup of coffee to give you a boost for walking around. I recommend Blackbird Bakery. You can’t go wrong with anything on the menu—everything is simply delicious. You may even decide to stop by our office to say “hello!” just a few doors down the way!

Next, take your coffee over to nearby Waterfront Park, where you can take in the vistas and watch the boats pass through the marina. In the past, this park has been home to shows, festivals, and even concerts. We all anxiously await the return of these festivities!

In the meantime, one of the island’s most popular destinations has just reopened and is a great way to spend a few hours. The Bainbridge Island Museum of Art is currently showing some stunning new exhibitions and is just a short walk away.

After some well-enjoyed art appreciation, it’s time for lunch! A short walk from the museum is Doc’s Marina Grill. Right on the water, this homestyle restaurant offers mouth-watering seafood, burgers, and American-style food that looks as good as it tastes, especially when on a plate next to the gorgeous view!

Once you’re through, there’s more to explore! A walk through the Bloedel Reserve will have you relaxed and enjoying what everyone says Bainbridge Island is famous for: peace and tranquility. There’s a mixed tapestry of woodlands, meadows, and gardens to stroll through, and on a sunny day, there’s rarely a more magical experience. Perfect for families as well as a solo visit, this is a great way to safely recreate while still experiencing key favorites of the Island.

To round out your day, savor a sip at sunset by visiting one of Bainbridge Island’s many wineries. Tastings can be done alone or with a group and may require a reservation. Grapes are grown right on the island and create a product that simply tastes diVINE.

As you board the ferry or your car to return home, you may be thinking “I could get used to this!”. If you’re considering moving to Bainbridge Island or the surrounding areas, I would love to help you find the perfect fit based on your unique lifestyle. Send me a note whenever you’re ready, and I’ll gladly set up a time for us to virtually connect.

Room-by-Room February Home Maintenance Checklist

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Many often associate home maintenance with spring cleaning. But February is as good a time as any to get a jump on maintenance items so come sunny spring days you can kick back and relax. Check these items all off your list or use a few to get inspired!

 

Kitchen

Check a couple of these items off your winter home safety maintenance checklist to improve conditions in your kitchen.

Deep Clean the Garbage Disposal

Nobody likes sink odors, so take a little time this month to clear the air in your kitchen. A clogged garbage disposal isn’t just gross—it can create expensive plumbing problems. Here’s how to clean your garbage disposal: Turn off the power, wipe the grinding chamber and drain, and deodorize with ice and vinegar. When finished, keep your garbage disposal clean for the rest of the year by grinding orange and lemon peels once a week.

Clean Out the Oven

Did you know that 8% of home cooking fires are caused by dirty ovens or ranges? Grime and food built up over the year can render your oven a grimy fire hazard if you don’t clean it regularly. The good news is cleaning the oven is as easy as following the instructions on your favorite brand of oven cleaner.

Check Your Fire Extinguisher

Kitchen fires are serious business. From 2012 to 2016, cooking was the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries and the second leading cause behind home fire deaths. You can keep an accident from becoming a tragedy by investing in a fire extinguisher and training your family on how to use it.

 

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Make your home feel a little cozier with these bedroom and living area improvements.

Clean Linens, Carpets, and Curtains

Dust, mites, and dander can all cause allergies long before spring pollen strikes. Deep clean your bed sheets, duvets, and comforters in each bedroom to keep the creepy crawlies away. The carpets and curtains in your living areas will also need some love after a year of use.

Upgrade Indoor Lights

Brighten things up with an upgrade to your living room and bedroom lights. You can control smart lights and anything plugged into a smart plug directly from your phone. These devices let you turn on the lights or start your morning coffee without getting out of bed.

 

Bathrooms

Here are a few home safety maintenance tasks to make your throne room fit for a king.

Clean out your medicine cabinet

After years of medications piling up, it’s time to clean out your medicine cabinet. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends tossing unused or expired medications. Proper disposal depends on the type of medication you’re throwing away. There are some medications you can flush and others you can’t (a list can be found via the FDA). For those you aren’t sure about, many cities have take-back locations that will dispose of medications properly.

Recaulk the Tub and Toilet

Prevent leaks and water damage in your home by checking the sealing and caulking in your bathroom. If needed, it only takes a few minutes to patch up any problem areas. You can find caulk online or at your local hardware store.

Deep Clean to Prevent Mold

Bathrooms are a paradise for molds, mildew, and fungus. This month, clean out your vents, fix any water leaks, and scrub the walls and ceilings to prevent black mold and other household mildews.

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Hallways

It’s easy to take your hallways for granted when it comes to routine checks and maintenance. These quick tasks take only a few minutes and can keep your home safe all year.

Test Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Dead batteries caused 25% of smoke alarm failures from 2012 to 2016.4 Simple routine maintenance can keep your home much safer.

This February check all the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they’re functional. If it’s been over 10 years since you last replaced these units, consider replacing your existing detectors.

Change Your HVAC Filter

Air quality is important inside and outside your home. Breathe a little easier going into spring by changing your HVAC air filter in the hallways, ceilings, or wherever your vent is located. While vents can vary from home to home, the process takes about as long as changing a lightbulb.

 

Outside

While February can be chilly, for those in warmer climates, spring is just around the corner. Here are a few ways you can keep the outside of your home safer until the warm weather comes.

Gutters

When able, clean out your gutters this February to prepare for the spring showers. Clogged gutters can cause expensive issues with your roof even if snow and ice aren’t part of the equation.

Upgrade Locks

Want to give a boost to your home security? Smart locks are both secure and convenient making it easier for you to get in and out of your house without letting intruders in. They’re especially handy for anyone who tends to lose their keys or needs to let visitors in.

Pantone’s Color of the Year Has a Unique, Local Tie

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Pantone colors of the year for 2021 are Ultimate Gray and Illuminating. (Image: Pantone)

Every year, folks around the globe look to the start of a new year with a fresh perspective. And leading that change, is the often highly anticipated Pantone Color of the Year. For two decades running, that color is chosen by experts at the Pantone Color Institute, but you might be surprised to learn that this influential decision is made right here in our backyard.

Local island resident Leatrice (Lee) Eiseman has been leading the influential group since the beginning. How special is that? Seattle Refined sat down with Leatrice to get the scoop on this year’s colors, how they were chosen, and what they mean.

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Leatrice (Lee) Eiseman is the Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute. (Image: Lee Eiseman)

Seattle Refined: Lee Eiseman from the Eiseman Center for Color Information and Training – you are literally a global color guru, and you live right here in our area on Bainbridge Island. You wear many hats, including one with Pantone, and we all know Pantone are the color experts!

Lee Eiseman: I’m the Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute. I’m the leader of the group who does their Color of the Year.

How did this start?

We started this back in 1999 because people would call Pantone, and they would say, “So tell us about the color for the Millennium?” There were two things going on at the time. One was the millennium bug, where the clocks were gonna stop, and all the computers were gonna go down. But at the same time, it was looking forward to a new century. We chose a color called Cerulean Blue. The color of the sky, the color of what lies beyond us. That represents a bit of peace and tranquility. We had such an amazing response to doing the Color of the Millennium. We decided that maybe we needed to do Color of the Year.

For 2021 there is something really unique happening.

We chose two colors this time, which is unusual for us. The two colors of the year are Ultimate Gray and Illuminating, which is a yellow.

What do these colors mean in terms of 2021?

We felt that with 2021 (and goodness knows what’s happening in the world around us and the stresses that people are under), gray would give us the solid, resilient color that is something you can depend on. It’s the color of rock and stone and granite and those sorts of things that are very substantive. Yellow, the Illuminating Yellow. What can we aspire to? What can we look forward to in the future? We know that in every country all over the world, people respond to sunshine on a very positive level. It’s cheer. It’s happiness. So we have two disparate colors coming together, which then gives us a feeling of connective-ness. We feel that that’s a very important word as far as the future is concerned.

What goes into this process of choosing these colors?

The biggest part of how we get that messaging is to examine the “Zeitgeist.” What’s going on in the world around us? What is it people are aspiring to, that they’re hoping for, and how does color best serve that? We look at fashion because fashion is always a forerunner. We look at the world of entertainment. We also look at the world of art. We look at industrial design. In addition to that, we look at big events.

Lee, you have written ten books on color – you are a teacher, you’ve taught many classes and you’ve dealt with some very big clients around the globe. Some people might feel intimidated by the idea of color and not know where to start.

I think that some people just have a skill like an artist does, but others can still learn how to enjoy color and use it in their everyday lives. I mean, when you set the table, you want to make the table look wonderful, you want to pick the colors that are right, the flowers, the stemware, you want to create a beautiful atmosphere. It is something that we take for granted – yes, that is a form of creativity! Why are we picking that color, what is it saying to us? I always tell people; each of us has that artistic ability within is. It’s something you can spend time and learn about and enjoy because it gets your creative juices going.

Lee Eiseman, it’s just so much fun talking to you. Thank you so much for your time and for sharing the colors of the year.

You’re very welcome.

For more about Lee Eiseman, including her color training programs, check out the Eiseman Center for Color Information and Training. You can also follow Lee Eiseman on Instagram and Facebook.

The Spirit of Giving this Holiday Season

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For those wanting to give this year, there are many wonderful opportunities here locally on our island. We’ve highlighted a few below, but for an extensive list, please visit here. Additionally, if you’re looking to shop local gifts, sosbainbridge.com is a wonderful resource with a comprehensive list of business updates on hours and ways to shop, plus find local specials and promotions!

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LOCAL NONPROFITS

Fishline

Fishline serves the North Kitsap Community by providing food, emergency services and resources to transform lives. Their vision is a community where a safety net exists for all people, which includes adequate food, shelter, healthcare and employment.

There are numerous ways you can contribute and even the smallest of acts make a huge impact.

Visit fishlinehelps.org >>

 

Helpline House

Helpline House is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides a network of critical social services through several different programs – including children services, senior services, financial assistance and a food bank. The agency’s programs help more than 2,500 people every year.  Neighbor helping neighbor, one neighbor at a time.

Visit helplinehouse.org >>

 

Bainbridge Island Senior/Community Center

The Bainbridge Island Senior Center is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit that participates in the community One Call for All program. Your gift of over $20 through One Call for All earns them a “share” of the Community Fund, so your gift has an even bigger impact!

Visit biseniorcenter.org >>

 

Bainbridge Island Land Trust

As a membership-based non-profit (EIN 91-1439338), the Bainbridge Island Land Trust receives its funding from generous Islanders and others who want to support lasting and real action on Bainbridge – from the acquisition of new land to the removal of invasive plants and replanting with native species, and stewardship of sensitive ecosystems and protection of wildlife habitats. Supporters also give thousands of volunteer hours out on the land, in the office, or serving on the board or one of their 6 committees. The Land Trust welcomes all to join in its land conservation work!

Visit bi-landtrust.org >>

Q3 2020 Market Update

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In an unusual year, the real estate market has largely been a beacon of positivity. After activity came to a brief halt in the second quarter, buyers quickly got off the bench to take advantage of extremely low interest rates, to invest in homes with bigger spaces, or to be closer to nature. And even as temperatures began to drop this September, the market remained hot in the third quarter with rapidly appreciating home prices, low inventory, and buyers eager to find the right opportunity.

This is particularly true on Bainbridge Island where homes are appreciating at record speed. Compared to this time last year, the average price per square foot is up 22%, while the median sold price is up 34% year-over-year. Fewer homes have been on the market, and those homes that are available have been closing quickly, too, with inventory of available homes down 61.3% versus this quarter in 2019.

If you’re curious about how this competitive market impacts the value of your home, reach out today. I’d be honored to help you reach your real estate goals!

Best of Bainbridge 2020

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It’s an honor and privilege to be voted the Best Realtor on Bainbridge Island for six years running. To my clients, friends, family and community members alike, you are the heart of my business and I thank each and every one of you for being a part of my growth as a realtor. Cheers to a successful year, and years to come!

Insider Look at Agate Point Estate

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Step inside this exceptional waterfront estate surrounded by lush gardens and mature landscaping. A mystical, winding drive through tall firs leads to the compound: A Miles Yanick designed main home.

Upon entering the estate, you’ll find yourself embraced with custom designs in exotic wood, brick, and glass — the perfect testament to the quality of build and thoughtfulness of hand-picked finishes. The stunning woodwork and brick add exceptional design elements and warmth to the home while ample windows pull in the sunshine that brightens each room.

This is the home you deserve, complete with a spacious primary bedroom with stellar views and a home office that’s sure to inspire. With four-bedrooms sprawling across 3,790 square-feet, you’ll find ample room and flexibility within the spaces to meet your needs.

The home chef will be delighted with the thoughtfully-designed kitchen that is centered with a sprawling island. Ample windows offer stunning vistas and a built-in dining nook lends itself for the most peaceful mornings with coffee as you watch sailboats pass by.

 

The sweeping views from this home will captivate you as you overlook Agate Pass marine traffic and wildlife from sun-drenched decks reminding you to unwind and connect with nature. For a cozy evening along the shore, follow a terraced path to 100 feet of private waterfront complete with a fire pit fit for lovely outdoor entertaining.

A separate two-car garage with a one-bedroom ADU above offers flexibility to meet any need and an over-sized shop with RV doors lends itself to accommodating storage for all the toys.

Embrace sustainability by nurturing the garden framed by a waterfront backdrop with plenty of space to expand the garden. When finished, head to the covered lower deck for relaxation where looking over the water will make you feel as though — just for a moment — time slows down.

Ready to schedule your private tour? Reach out today.

 

If You Only Have a Day

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We are so lucky to live on Bainbridge Island. For us, this is just our community – but for others, Bainbridge Island can be a relaxing getaway. Our island makes for an excellent day trip and escape from the hustle of surrounding cities. Perhaps you’re looking to explore the island for a day. If so, this is the ultimate guide to visiting Bainbridge If You Only Have a Day.

If coming from the East (Seattle and beyond), you’re likely to enter the island by ferry which is undoubtedly the most picturesque arrival. Boarding from Ferry Terminal at Pier 50, you’ll use the same ferry islanders use to commute downtown for work. You’ll enjoy a breezy 35-minute ferry ride offering spectacular vistas of the Seattle skyline to your east and Olympic Mountains on the west. Traveling on a clear day? Don’t forget to turn around for an epic shot of Mount Rainier as your backdrop. The best part? You can go by car, bicycle, or foot as the island is flexible and accessible to all modes of transportation.

Sound fantastic? Then read on for our suggested itinerary below and don’t forget to bring your mask!

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9:00 am

Get up early and catch the 9:35 am ferry from the Seattle Ferry Terminal. You’ll want to make sure to get there a half an hour early (especially if you have a car) because they do fill up on busy weekends at prime time.

When you get to the island, walk 10-15 minutes up the street into the quaint downtown area.

10:15 am

Turn left on Winslow Way E and stroll through the downtown area. Don’t worry, you’ll be back! Walkthrough the main strip of Winslow and take a left on Madison Ave S. You’ll end at Pegasus Coffee, a strong contender for the best coffee on the island. Grab your drink of choice and savor it at Waterfront Park to admire the views of the harbor and beyond.

11:00 am

Time for breakfast! We recommend Good Egg for brunch. They have a range of breakfast foods – from eggs, to sandwiches, to granola. Eat your fill and relax – their outdoor patio seating is the perfect place to hang out and enjoy your food on a sunny day.

11:45 am

Remember that cute little downtown strip you walked past? Now it’s time to explore that little slice of heaven.

If you’re in town on a Saturday, don’t miss the Bainbridge Island Farmers Market, which is a few blocks north of Winslow Way.

A must-stop for book lovers (and pretty much everyone, I guess) is Eagle Harbor Books. Spend a few minutes wandering the shelves and check out some of the work by local authors. If you see something you like, buy it!

Next, time for some shopping. You won’t want to miss Pelindaba Lavender and Salt House Mercantile, two of the best shops in the area. Here are some others that are worth checking out.

  • Danger – handcrafted gifts and art – like their stunning jewelry
  • Millstream – Pacific Northwest-inspired art, gifts, and souvenirs
  • Winslow Mall – a collection of small boutiques

There are a few more stops worth making before catching the 2:10 ferry back to Seattle.

For ice cream…head to Mora Iced Creamery for the best ice cream on the island. Gluten free? Just ask and they’ll use a clean scoop and cup to serve up your frozen treat.

For wine… head to Eleven Winery’s tasting room along Winslow Way. Or, if you’ve got a car, you should head to the actual winery a few miles away on Bainbridge Island.

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For beer lovers… head to Bainbridge Brewing’s Alehouse for some craft beer made on Bainbridge Island. If you have a car, their brewery is a few miles north along state highway 305 and is worth a visit. They have cider (in cans and bottles, for Celiac friends) and non-alcoholic drinks that are gluten-free, but no food or wine.

For art lovers… head to Bainbridge Island Museum of Art for a world-class display of contemporary art and crafts of the Puget Sound Region.

1:45 pm

That’s it! Head back to the Ferry Terminal (the same one you arrived at) and take the ferry back to Seattle.

Social Distance-Friendly Events Around the Island

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The pandemic has changed many things in 2020, but one thing that has not changed is Bainbridge Island’s love for community! We’re finding creative ways to stay connected while staying safe. Check out these events happening around the island this month that are social distance-friendly and island approved!

 

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Photo Courtesy of Island Theater

WHAT | Island Theatre’s 2020 Ten-Minute Play VIDEO Festival

WHEN | August 13-15 at 7:30 p.m.

Watch some of the best plays by Kitsap County playwrights! In lieu of the traditional live event, Island Theatre will be streaming a selection of plays from past Ten-Minute Play Festivals for four screenings, August 13 – 15. Screenings will be at 7:30 pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (8/13-8/15) and at 3:00 pm on Saturday 8/15. The program features 11 plays in two one-hour programs that will be streamed back-to-back. Watch all 11 plays at one time, or watch half one day and half another. No ticketing or registration is required.

Watch and learn more at www.islandtheatre.org.

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Photo Courtesy of Bainbridge Island Parks and Rec

WHAT | Movies in the Park – Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker

WHEN | August 14, 2020 at 8:30 p.m.

Pack your car full of your favorite treats and head on over to Battle Point Park for a drive-in movie with the family! To ensure the safety of all guests and follow WA Safe Start phased reopening guidelines, it is asked that you please remain in your vehicle for the duration of the film. Due to limited vehicle capacity, registration is required for this free event. Movies begin shortly after 8:30 pm. Parking attendants will be on site to help situate your vehicle. Viewing the film outside of your vehicle will not be permitted due to WA Safe Start requirements.

Register to watch at Bainbridge Island Metro Park & Recreation District.

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Photo Courtesy of Bainbridge Island Rotary

WHAT | Bainbridge Island Rotary Online Auction & Rummage Sale

WHEN | Monday August 24, 6:00 am through Sunday August 30, 5:00 pm

This August, for the first time in its 60-year history, the Rotary Auction & Rummage Sale is being held online. To protect our community during the COVID-19 pandemic, they opted for this new arrangement. And while a lot of things are different this year, one thing remains the same: All proceeds from the Auction & Rummage Sale are invested in our community, local and beyond. This year, donating and buying items happens from the comfort of your home. The only personal interaction is between donor and buyer for item pickup, at an agreed upon time and place. You can eliminate contact by arranging for pickup at the donor’s porch or driveway and items will stay with donors until purchased.

Learn more and shop at bainbridgerotaryauction.org/shopping-at-the-online-auction/.

Seeking a Change of Scenery?

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After months of quarantine you might be itching to get some fresh air and step out of the house. Last month, we highlighted some wonderful hikes around the island to marvel at nature and stretch your legs. This month, we’d like to look at some of the local businesses open that you can safely support and visit for a change of scenery.

 

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Photo Courtesy of Bloedel Reserve

Bloedel Reserve

The Reserve is one of the greatest gifts both to local residents as well as guests from elsewhere. It gives everyone an inspiring experience and opportunity to explore nature. To protect the health and safety of their guests, Bloedel Reserve is offering a timed ticketing system for admission to makes sure the grounds stay at an appropriate capacity. For more information, or to request tickets, please visit https://bloedelreserve.org/tickets/.

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Photo Courtesy of Bainbridge Island Apothecary and Tea Shop

Bainbridge Island Apothecary and Tea Shop

A lovely new business on the island that just had their first soft opening July 3rd and are officially open for business as of July 8th, this new Apothecary and Tea Shop is sure to become a new favorite! Stop in for some delectable treats or browse their inventory of teas to add to your collection. Learn more information about their business hours here.

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Photo Courtesy of Eleven Winery

Eleven Winery Paint and Sip July 10th

Join the winery along with Corks and Canvas Events for an evening of fun and creativity. Dust off your artistic skills with an instructor as you create the Bainbridge Island iconic ferry boat. The class includes step-by-step instruction, all paint supplies, brushes, and gloves (must be worn during the event). You must bring a mask to wear for arrival and departure for the safety of yourself and other guests. To get tickets, visit https://corksandcanvasevents.com/event/ferry-crossing-at-sunset-at-eleven-winery-bainbridge/.