Whidbey Beer Works

Did you know that the town of Oak Harbor has its own specialty beer store?

Well, if you didn’t, you should definitely check out Whidbey Beer Works! 

Here, at this local shop, I met Greg, the owner of the business, and let me tell you… he is one of the nicest person you will meet and so knowledgeable about BEER.

If you decide to go and check this place out, I highly encourage you to take your time and browse through the vast variety of beer on the shelves. You will be able to find a huge selection of beers, ciders, meads and wines. The owners import some of the beer from other countries as well and I was able to find some beer to satisfy my Italian heritage. Yippie! 

You should check out another awesome event: Oktoberfest in Leavenworth. You can buy tickets online and enjoy the fun atmosphere of this great event less than 3 1/2 hours away. 

DID YOU KNOW? Beer soup was a common breakfast in medieval Europe! ( I am sure people had a good start to their day  😉 )

For more information check out Whidbey Beer Works web page here & Leavenworth Oktoberfest here

Posted on June 9, 2018 at 5:58 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , , , , ,

Selling Vacant Land

Vacant land, real estate, raw land, selling


Last month we talked about purchasing vacant land. But what about selling?

Here are some things to consider when selling raw land.










Please, do not hesitate to contact me if you have any additional questions.

For information about purchasing vacant land click here.


Posted on March 28, 2018 at 5:12 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , , , ,

Miss Oak Harbor Scholarship Program

If you didn’t know, Oak Harbor has a Miss Oak Harbor Scholarship Program and just a few days ago it was the crowning of Miss Oak Harbor, Teen Miss Oak Harbor and their Royal Courts.


I just learned about this great opportunity for our local ladies and took the chance to interview the founder of this amazing program.

Jes Walker-Wyse is the founder of Pageant Wyse Inc. and she, with the help of her friend River Powers, created this program four years ago.

By watching the above video, you will learn that Pageant Wyse Inc. is not a beauty pageant. The essence of the program is based on empowerment and self-development of these young adults. The contestants get graded on different aspects of their lives: academics, athletics, services…. these are just a few of the fields taken into consideration.

These young woman have the opportunity to have fun, gain confidence and also make new friends. They have the opportunity to show off their talents, overcome shyness, learn life skills and become well rounded citizens. And most of all there is the opportunity to win scholarships in the advancement of their education.

If you would like to know more about the program you can check its website here and the Facebook page here.

Posted on March 22, 2018 at 10:13 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , , ,

Purchasing Vacant Land


Ahhhh, the lovely earthy scent produced by the rain or the morning dew, the buzzing of the bees and the many of shades of green enchanting the view. Who doesn’t like to be immersed into nature and fantasize about living in it?

If you are one of the many Americans that would love to buy raw land and build your dream home, let me help you with this complex but exciting task.


Make sure you take into consideration these details:



If you don’t have a preferred lender let me know and I can help with the perfect match.


Understand how the land can be used. Local government usually have established zoning regulations.

Call your local planning and zoning department and they will provide you with the information.

Check the island county webpage here 

We will need to do some research and this will include things that can be forgotten: utilities.

You need to make sure to check if the lot has access to public utilities: electricity, sewer, gas, water etc.


Last but not least, make sure you do thorough and expansive research about home builders.

I would be more than happy to give my recommendations.



Posted on February 28, 2018 at 9:30 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , , , , ,

Becoming an American Citizen

February 14th is traditionally known to be a day filled with flowers, chocolates and shared love stories. This year, instead of celebrating a customary Valentine’s Day, I commemorated a NEW event in my life, I became a US CITIZEN!

After living in the Unites States for nearly 14 years, last May I finally made the decision to apply for citizenship and make this country my official home.

I still remember the first time I landed in the United States. People were so warm and friendly, and I never felt uneasy or unwelcomed in this country. Needless to say, becoming a full fledged US citizen wasn’t a hard decision to make.

I checked in at the Homeland Security Office at 8:15 am. We, all the applicants, were grouped together, just waiting to be called for check in.

After check in, we went downstairs into the auditorium, where families and friends were already there, seated, waiting for us. Applicants seats were assigned and we were directed into our rows, eagerly awaiting for what was going to happen next.

The director of the Seattle Homeland Security office spoke to 76 applicants from 36 different countries who were waiting to be officially naturalized! When they called our country of origin we stood, and they told us that the next time we sat, it would be as Americans. We recited the Oath of Allegiance with our right hands raised in the air, watched and listened to President Trump’s message, and then sat as new American Citizens! Woot Woot!!!!

What a GREAT experience!!!
This day will always be an extremely emotional and important day in my life. I was so impressed by the number of people gathered together and swearing their allegiance to their new country. I am sure this event meant many different things to the many different people that participated in the ceremony. As for myself, I have grown roots here, in Oak Harbor, and have no plan to leave in the foreseeable future. I decided to become an American citizen and to honor this country which had given me a home.
Now, every time the Pledge of Allegiance will be recited or the Star Spangled Banner be sung, I won’t feel left out. I will proudly stand up and put my right hand over my heart.






Posted on February 16, 2018 at 10:03 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , ,

National Boy Scout Day

Today February 8th 2018 is National Boy Scout Day.
I met with Blake Jones, the Island District Executor, and was able to learn quite a few interesting things about the Boy and Cub Scouts programs we have in wonderful Whidbey Island.
With a town filled with energetic children, and an area rich in history and nature, having kids join these programs is such a great idea. Social skills, life lessons and community work are just a few of the things they will get to experience.
For more information click here & here 
To join, check this webpage 

Posted on February 9, 2018 at 9:30 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged ,

National Pie Day

Did you know that the first pie recipe was published during the Roman Empire? Earlier pies were mainly meat pies and later on, during the 12th century in England, they evolved into a more modern pie resemblance.

These days we enjoy pies all over the world, and it is a staple dessert in America.

Today, January 23rd 2018, is National Pie Day and I decided to get my pie fix at Greenbank Farm.

I went to Whidbey Pie Cafe’, and let me tell you….this place is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! If you’ve never been, now is the time to change that. From delicious coffee, sandwiches and soups, to pie galore you find a little bit of everything at Whidbey Pie Cafe. Local produce is used, along with coconut oil, fruits and berries from the Pacific Northwest.

Every holiday is an excuse for me to go ahead and order a pie from this local business. For you berry lovers, the marionberry pie is a must try! The caramel apple pie…. Oh My!

I hope that by the end of this post you are now eager to go grab a delicious pie 🙂

For more information http://www.whidbeypies.com/


Posted on January 25, 2018 at 12:43 am
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , ,

National Cheese Lover Day

Today, January 20th 2018, is National Cheese Lover Day!


I like to support local businesses, so I took this opportunity to visit one of my favorite places on the Island to shop for cheese and wine. Who doesn’t like this magical combination? 🙂


Cheese has such an interesting history, no one really knows when or where the first production started. There are a lot of references to cheese in Greek and Egyptian history. By the time of the Roman Empire, cheese was a widespread food and delicacy in Europe, and also in the Middle East. 


Today we are blessed (….blessed if you enjoy this yumminess) to enjoy different varieties of cheese. From soft to hard, and savory to sweet, you are able to find what best suits your taste in most stores. 


I went to Bayleaf, a local shop in the heart of Coupeville, and talked to Beth, the owner, about cheeses and their differences. It is the ultimate treat to shop for wine and other delicacies in the same place. The smell, and appetizing foods displayed on the shelves are inviting and alluring. If you were not hungry by the time you arrive here, you will be within a few minutes!


For more information visit https://www.bayleaf.us/

Posted on January 20, 2018 at 11:25 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , ,

Are You Ready To Sell?

Happy 2018!!!

Holidays are already behind us and before we know spring will be here at our doorstep.

Have you been thinking of selling your home this spring? If you are, you are in luck. We are still in a seller’s market, and spring is the optimal time to sell a house. Because the real estate market is based on the principle of supply and demand, being in a market where there are more buyers than homes for sale, works to your advantage.

Here are some important factors to consider for a smooth selling process:

Interview Real Estate Agents

Your choice of a listing agent will make a huge difference in how quickly you will sell your home and for the most profit possible. I always recommend to interview several agents. An agent with a comprehensive marketing plan and knowledge of the market is KEY. Choose wisely and don’t just go with the one who tells you they can sell your property for the highest price; overpriced homes often sell for less than market value.

Improve Your Home

While you don’t necessarily have to do a major renovation (unless needed), you can approach minor repairs prior listing your home. Not all repairs/renovations will pay off, hence asking for professional guidance is important. Updating light fixtures, ceiling fans, door knobs and a fresh coat of paint are just some examples of sprucing up your most valuable asset.

Clear Away The Clutter/Depersonalize

While everyone has clutter, buyers want to have a vision of the house they are going to step in; a place where they can fantasize and view themselves living in. The choice is yours, you can hire a professional stager, have your real estate agent guidance or stage it yourself.

For more information on staging click here 


Posted on January 5, 2018 at 9:36 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged ,

Prepare your home for winter in Whidbey Island.

With winter fast approaching, I chose this lovely day to interview one of my trusted home inspectors, Rick Bunzel from Pacific Crest Inspections. 

Like a car, a home needs regular maintenance and even seasoned homeowners can fall behind if not paying attention.

Be a smarter homeowner and take some time now to get ahead of the game!

You might be interested in this https://paccrestinspections.com/

Posted on November 14, 2017 at 8:55 pm
Simona Groves | Posted in Simona's Blog posts | Tagged , , , , , ,