Arizona Hiking Precautions

Arizona has one of the most beautiful landscapes this country has to offer. In fact, because of its landscape, many Arizonians love the ability to hike. With so many diverse trails and scenic views, it can be a great way to stay physically active throughout the year. However, while hiking can be fun, Arizona’s deserts have some very harsh terrain. Improperly preparing for some of these elements can set you up for failure. To help, here are three things you need to remember before hitting the trails:

Stay Hydrated

Arizona’s heat is no joke, especially during the summer! If you plan on hiking during the summer, plan on going very early morning. Arizona’s peak heat time is in the afternoon, so evening hikes can still be very hot. Bring plenty of water for the trails. Be cognitive of how much water you are drinking. When you have consumed more than half your water, you should start heading back. This way, you are paced to not run out of water deep in the desert or high up in the mountains.

Stay on the Trails

The desert is beautiful, but many animals and plants in the desert should be admired from afar. Arizona is home to many venomous snakes and insects. Scorpions, Black Widows, Rattlesnakes, Gila Monsters, Tarantula, Brown Recluse, and Desert Centipedes are among some of the few critters to be concerned. Some cacti are even called jumping cacti and can “leap” towards you in your come into close proximity. Your best bet is to stay on trails and watch where you are stepping.

Know When Sunset Is

Sunset and sunrise change throughout the year. Arizona does not have a time change, but sunset can be pretty early in the Valley. Know when sunset is so you do not get caught in the desert at night. The desert comes alive at night with coyotes and javelinas. Be cognitive of the time while you explore the trails. 

Do Not Hike Alone

Lastly, while you may be excited to go explore, do not hike alone. Having a companion with you is always smart. Know your limits and be responsible for your own safety and others.

While there are elements to be concern about, hiking is still very safe when done right. Be smart and prepare for your trails before you go out for the day. Staying hydrated and being wary of your surrounds will allow you to have the best experience when hiking the beautiful desert oasis!

Why Arizona Is Right for You 

Many individuals have recently chosen to pack up their belongings and move to Arizona. The population has seen a significant increase over the last decade, but what makes this area such an attraction? Arizona not only offers excellent weather all year round, but it is a very versatile place to live. From scenic landscapes to blue skies, this paradise is extremely inviting for all ages. Whether you are new to Arizona or about to experience this desert oasis, here are the top five reason Arizona has become so popular. 

Cost of Living 

Arizona’s cost of living is currently very competitive. While it is beginning to increase, this is still the time to buy! Arizona offers many of the amenities you would consider in one of the most expensive states like California for a fraction of the price.

Annual Climate 

Throughout the United States, many individuals dislike the harsh winters of the North. The constant shoveling of driveways and scraping ice off your windshield can quickly get old. However, you do not need to shovel sunshine! Arizona is always a perfect temperature all year round with winters being in the 70s! 

Artsy Atmosphere 

If you travel into any major city like Scottsdale or Phoenix, you will quickly recognize the passion for art used throughout the city. From beautiful architecture to extravagant landscapes, Arizona offers a very sophisticated art scene. 

Scenic Landscapes 

Arizona’s desert landscape is one of the most beautiful spectacles. From mountains to valleys, this landscape never gets old. Within a few several hour drives, you can see beautiful National Parks, canyons, craters, waterfalls, mountains, and much more! 

Arizona has many great attractions, museums, and landscapes. Many tourist and homeowners cherish having the privilege to explore the beloved state. What are your favorite features of Arizona? Let us know below in the comment section! 

Design Inspiration: Set a Snowy Mood

22974805_SThe number of times we’ve seen snow in the Phoenix area in the last decade can pretty much be counted on one hand, but we can visit snow country all winter by driving just a few hours.

With the holidays coming, some people from other parts of the country may miss the winter weather, while others are grateful for no shoveling off driveways and scraping snow and ice off cars.

If you would like to capture some of the feeling of a crisp snowy day, your decorating decisions can help make that vision a reality. Let’s imagine a January morning in the country just after the first fall of “real” snow – the kind that sticks to the ground and piles up rather than just melting away.

Here’s the first surprise. There’s a lot more than white happening. In the photo above, tree trunks look black against the snow, and shades of grey appear with the contrasts of sunshine and shadow.

Look again and you will see textures and patterns visible at no other time of the year. You can make your home reflect this mood with a few choices.

22549326_STake a look at the room shown to the right. White shares space with several shades of grey and some black. But it’s about more than color – notice the texture of the wall – matching well with the dappled look of snow in the shadows of the landscape above.

The rug mirrors the mix of white and grey visible in the scene in the combination of branches, ice and snow. If you look at that rug with winter in mind, it almost seems as though it might melt under your feet. The sheer curtains mimic the white sunlight coming through the snow in the distance.

The blue and white coverlets on the sofa bring in a color often visible on a snowy day, and the space finishes up with pops of red – always a powerful contrast color and perfect with a winter landscape.

Would you like to bring a snowy mood into your home just in time for the holidays? You can do it, with the right combination of color and texture. And maybe just a few sleigh bells?

Exploring Fulton Homes Design Online

Envision_HomeThere are so many wonderful choices to make when you’re planning your new Fulton home. And there are many ways to approach learning about and determining which options suit you. The models are a great place to start. Take the time to visit a number of models to see various choices in person. Don’t hesitate to take notes on your favorites.

Of course, the Fulton Homes Design Center is set up to help you review and make your selections. In addition to your personal design appointment time, weekly browse nights give you the opportunity to take a look at all of the choices available for you.

Fulton Home’s Design Online lets you review options and make some preliminary decisions using your computer. It’s easy to log on to your own personal design planning space. Start by reviewing the design library which provides blogs that give advice on making decisions, and be sure to take the time to review the included features. You may be surprised at how much is included with your home purchase.

Then move on to the Wishlist. This covers every category of home option, from structural and electrical decisions to design elements such as flooring, cabinets and countertops. Create your Wishlist and you will have a head start when you visit the Fulton Homes Design Center.

Browsing this “virtual” design center online is a fun and intriguing part of planning your new Fulton home. We look forward to helping you make your Fulton home as special as you are.

Welcome to Cooley Station – Amenities

To do justice to Cooley Station, we’re showcasing the amenities using more photos in this blog. Whether you are young professionals, a family with growing children, or empty nesters, this masterplanned community, located in Gilbert, is designed with you in mind. Let’s take a look at some of the amenities available to our future homeowners.

1 beautiful common areas3 beautiful common areasHere are several examples of the common areas available for Fulton homeowners. With covered spaces, outdoor fireplaces, seating and lovely landscaping, these provide great locations for meeting neighbors and entertaining family and friends.

10 community pool8 community pool4 community poolThree community swimming pools provide a perfect place to bring your children during hot summer afternoons. Taking a dip in a pool in the evening can reduce stress and cool you off for the rest of the night.

Think about creating your own swimming schedule. Swimming and water aerobics are some of the best ways to build and maintain muscle strength without putting too much pressure on your joints.

6 lots of green space5 play structuresGreen areas give your eyes a break from desert landscaping and cool down the area. Best of all, the homeowner’s association maintains these spaces so you don’t have to mow lawns or pull weeds in the summer heat!

Parks offer multiple play areas and tot lots, with swings and other features to keep your active children or grandchildren entertained. These are great places for play dates with other toddlers in the area. And you will find one just a short walk from your Fulton Home.

11 ramadas7 barbequesPlanning a barbeque or picnic? Check out the Cooley Station grills and ramadas. Take an evening to play a game of pick-up basketball on a neighborhood court.

This community has been designed to give you opportunities to live fully, whatever your preferred amenities, with a minimal cost of only $111 a month in homeowner association dues. If you’re planning a trip to visit Cooley Station, take a few minutes to drive around and visit our shared spaces.

 

Welcome to Cooley Station – Santa Fe Models

El Capitan ADo you enjoy exploring model homes? Then how about taking the opportunity to visit Fulton Homes’ newest community, Cooley Station? With three models and four designs set up for a quick move-in, if you are captured by one of the choices the Fulton team will work with you to get you ready to go in double-quick time.

The Santa Fe series has four home designs, with three of them available to view as models. All of these homes are two stories and feature courtyards that can be transformed into outdoor living spaces. The photo above shows the El Capitan, which offers 3 to 5 bedrooms, 3 baths with an open study, loft, and huge side courtyard. With the option that adds a studio and bathroom, the addition of 261 square feet of living space makes the total home size 2557 feet.Grand Canyon G

The next model, the Grand Canyon, has a first-floor master bedroom and the option of two to four more bedrooms on the second floor.

The home has three full baths and an option to add a fourth. It also features a large loft and side courtyard. This home starts at 2458 square feet, with the possibility of expanding the upper level by 437 square feet, adding either an extra two bedrooms or an additional master suite on the second floor.

Phoenix Express EThe third model, the Phoenix Express, is 2658 square feet with 3 to 4 bedrooms and 3 full baths. This home design offers a large open study, a loft, and a side courtyard. One option offers an expansion of the second floor loft, adding an inviting covered balcony.

All of the Santa Fe homes feature eight-foot interior doors, 18 inch ceramic tile, 36 inch maple cabinets, granite countertops, ceilings fans, window coverings and front yard landscaping and maintenance. We’d love you to come out and take a look!

 

Welcome to Cooley Station

Cooley StationHow about Gilbert, Arizona for your new home? Gilbert, known for its small town feel with a big city appeal, has great shopping, restaurants, and excellent schools.

Fulton Homes selected Gilbert for its newest master-planned community, Cooley Station, for these reasons and many others. The neighborhood is only five minutes away from San Tan Mall, a wonderful source for some of the finest department stores in Arizona, such as Dillards and Macy’s, along exceptional national chains such as Best Buy and the Apple store.

Gordon Biersch, Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, Paradise Bakery, Johnny Rockets, and Blue Wasabi sushi are just a few of the enjoyable restaurants also available. Harkins Theaters provides the best in film viewing. This area of Gilbert has everything you need to live comfortably without traveling very far.

Cooley Station is designed to meet the needs of growing families, young professionals and empty nesters. Amenities are many and varied with choices to meet a variety of interests. while the HOA dues are just $111 per month.

All of the homes are designed with a side courtyard for an inviting outdoor area that is perfect for entertaining. This collection of two-story homes have landscaping designed for easy living: making them ideal for those who love to travel, with homes that work well for the “lock-and-leave” livestyle.

Cooley Station is located on Warner Road east of Higley Rd. and one mile north of the 202, making this an easy-to-get-to destination. We invite you to pay us a visit soon.

Fulton Homes Super Browse Night and Poco Verde Landscape: Arizona’s Premiere Landscape Company

15149083_SFulton Homes is pleased to host another Super Browse Night at our Design Center this Thursday night from 5 – 8 p.m. We’re fortunate to have two great sponsors for the event: Poco Verde Landscape, Inc. and Bertazzoni appliances.

Join us this Thursday night to discover the rich selection of options available for your Fulton Home and sign up for a chance to win an iPad Mini.

Take the time during your visit to learn about Poco Verde Landscape, with over 30 years of experience serving the Valley of the Sun and over 45,000 residential and commercial projects completed.

With a Landscape Architect, Arizona Certified Nurseryman, Horticultural Specialists and Master Gardeners on staff, Poco Verde is prepared to help you develop the yard of your dreams.

Start by reviewing the inviting landscape packages available to you specifically developed for Fulton Homebuyers in your community. Then take the opportunity to talk with one of the knowledgeable Poco Verde specialists to determine how to create a landscape that meets your entertaining and aesthetic goals.

Outdoor features available through Poco Verde include fireplaces and fire pits, water features such as spas and fountains, decks of travertine and concrete pavers, barbecues and armadas, and whatever your imagination can dream of to make your outdoor space fulfill your goals. Enjoy looking through a portfolio of successful installations to start giving you some ideas for your own place.

Join us Thursday night from 5 – 8 p.m. at the Fulton Homes Design Center, 1241 West Warner Road, #106, Tempe, AZ. To find us turn south on Beck between Priest and Hardy. Turn right in the second driveway. We look forward to seeing you!

Preparing for Summer: Outdoor Prep

6089971_SNow that summer’s heat is upon us, it’s time to come up with ways to enjoy being outdoors in spite of the temperatures. Here are a few suggestions to make the most of the season.

Al fresco breakfast: The temperatures stay cool in the morning here in Arizona well into the summer. How about planning breakfasts outside instead of dinners? Place dishes, bowls and silverware on a tray, and add cereal, eggs or whatever is planned for breakfast that day. It only takes a few minutes to move outside, and you and your family will have a cheerful start to the day before temperatures rise.

Shade: The best shade comes from trees, but a covered patio or umbrellas such as the ones in the photo provide a close second. Just remember to close the umbrellas when you’re not using them, because our Arizona sun can fade and wear them out quickly.

Misting: You can hire a company to install misters or pick up a do-it-yourself kit at your local hardware store. The cool damp air works well in our dry weather as an informal evaporative cooler. When sitting under the mist, the temperature can feel much more enjoyable.

Outdoor ceiling fans: NOT to be combined with misting systems! These fans don’t actually lower the temperature, but they can make you feel cooler when sitting under them. Even though your fan may be under a covered patio, be sure to buy one designed for outdoor use. It is then protected from dust and other weather elements.

Choose your best options from among these or others, to allow you to extend your outdoor enjoyment for a few more months every year.

Bring a Taste of the Outside Inside with Fresh Flowers

With the Arizona summer barely half over, we can look forward to the future days to come when it will be more pleasant to spend time outside. One good way to bring the feeling of the outside into your home is with fresh flowers.

Shop your favorite florist, pick some from your garden, and check out the flowers available at your grocery or warehouse store. Look for flowers that are perky, with buds only partially open so that they will last.

Put flowers where you spend most of your time. Take a look at this home office to the right. A small bunch of flowers like these gerbera daisies tucked behind the computer monitor add a bright spot to your space. Gerberas are available in a rich variety of colors in one bouquet.  You can also look for flowers with a nice, fresh scent to add a real perfume to your room.

 

If you’re uncomfortable making your own flower arrangements, go simple. The arrangement at the top of the post is made up of only yellow tulips, all cut to about the same length. Even simpler, how about tackling the easy option to the left. This also uses gerbera daisies, but by using only one or two flowers per vase, you create an almost sculptural look. This is also an inexpensive option since you only have to use a few stems.

For those of you who would rather buy flowers, one bunch can be affordable, so don’t hesitate to experiment. If they don’t turn out the way you imagined, they will still be beautiful. Even the process of arranging flowers can be relaxing and enjoyable. Give yourself a present of fresh flowers every now and again, and bring the best of the season inside.