Mother’s Day Reflections

Holidays are embraced as a time to celebrate and spend time with family and other important persons in our lives.  In general, what are we celebrating?   My top three reasons for celebration are:




I would like to say that I celebrate life each day.  Embrace it fully with gratitude.  Some days are better than others for claiming that stance.  As we accumulate moments and memories in life many of us also accumulate stuff.  Collections, gifts, inherited items all seem to funnel into our lives.  Families are often burdened with making decisions about these belongings which are often perceived as wed to relationships or memories.

I like to think of my relationships with family as layered like a trifle.  Spongy cake, bright juicy berries, and fluffy whip topping.  However, when there are only a few cherries who gets those cherries?  If we think of the great items in our families as cherries we can see that it can be tough deciding who gets the prized fruits?  Do we divide them?  Do we subtract cake if you get a cherry?  Does Mom worry if there are not enough cherries someone will be upset so she just ignores serving them and pushes them aside?  Can a conversation possibly be the gate to freedom for Mom – the current caretaker of the family heirlooms ?

Honor Mom.  Celebrate her life, your family, and memories.  Reflect.  Would your Mom appreciate directness if you ask that some items be professionally valued and divided now?  Would it make her load lighter on a daily basis ?  I encourage families to discuss important belongings.  Not only for decisions regarding disbursement, but to record history and provenance.

As an appraiser I find meaning at several levels in the old adage – “There is no time like the present.” Increasingly I find that many adult children have no room or desire to take in a vast array of “goodies”.

Is engaging a professional broker to sell some items now a scenario that warrants family discussion? Professional appraisers can fulfill the role of a broker. I personally always have a client or two somewhere in the brokerage process and offer client tailored solutions based on many important factors.  Call today to discuss your situation and factors surrounding your situation.  The phone consultation is free.

What if Mom is gone and you are facing dividing items amongst heirs ?  Obtaining a professional, objective 3rd party decision so that the “cherries” don’t become a problem is often a wise step.  Appraisers can assist in equitable distribution.  If one member of the family takes a bigger scoop of trifle and a cherry,  then they should get less cash or other assets? Making sure that there is no room for doubt, hurt, or the potential relationship damage is one of the tasks executors face.  An appraiser can offer solutions.  For example, this week I am assisting two families in this process.  Neither possess a great deal of personal property, but the involved parties realize worth beyond the value of the items in engaging my services.

If Mom wants to live with all her items and the family decides that disbursement will come later then consider whether items need to be appraised to document ownership, what the item is, and determine the replacement value.  As the policy holder these are the three pieces of information that will need to be established for items you own in event of loss.  Knowing and recording these facts allows for informed decisions regarding insurance coverage.

The market changes, what was valuable decades ago may or may not be valuable.  What was put in “the back room” could now be sought.  Professional appraisers know the market.  Call today if you desire a proficient appraiser to value your valuables.  Val knows Value – call today to discover options for engaging a professional who understands the “soft” and hard issues involved with a family’s personal property.

Wishing you and your family continued and happy celebrations.

Colorful, Cool, and Collectible. The 3 C

Colorful, Cool, and Collectible. The 3 C’s of the paper world! @ISAppraisers Check o @ISAppraisers Check out ISA’s Annual conference line up. Sunny AZ!

Would certainly like to see this exhibit

Would certainly like to see this exhibit. Great way to present fine objects in context of Worlds Fairs debut.

Whoa – China surpasses USA once again in

Whoa – China surpasses USA once again in becoming largest art market

Stunning auction sale of master http://o

Stunning auction sale of master

Big Number cited by AJC peeks interest.

Andy Warhol, Campbell's Soup I, 1968.

Image via Wikipedia

Alas, my first blog post for the New Year was as slow in appearing as the ice is in melting or being cleared in metro Atlanta.  Today as I was braving the freezing cold to make my way to Starbucks to meet my social media user group members, I noticed a folded AJC section, from Wednesday, on the kitchen table.  Face up was the side bar item entitled “Today’s Number”.  While it wasn’t the exponential number – schools cancelled to the power of number of days, or the number of minutes trucks sat on I-285 near Hartsfield Int’l Airport.  Mentioning Hartsfield, one of the nation’s busiest airports, it wasn’t even the number of flights canceled or the number of people calling the terminal home.  It was a huge number.  $7.75 million.

So what is  significant about 7.75 million dollars ?  It is, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the top estimate that a large and little known self-portrait is pegged to reach.  Whose face ?  Which icon ?  A political leader, a rock-star ?  NO – it is Andy Warhol.  Christie’s expects the 6-foot-square red and white painting by the pop artist executed as one of series in 1967 to bring down the hammer in the 7 mil range.  The painting goes on public view Jan 22 – 26 in NYC, NY.  Auction date for the work is in February.  Check out Christie’s website for a press release at:   Christie’s Andy Warhol Press Release.

Thanks goes out to my husband Joe for bringing home the section, even though he alerted me to  another tidbit which I will share in my next blog post.  My social media user group(smug) rocks – as today’s weather braving smuggers (Twitter ids: @BousquetCMP, @robertfbenson, and @capitalhorizons) encouraged me to get this post out to you.

If you need help understanding auction estimates or want to venture into the wide world of auctions and need a bit of guidance we are here to help.  May your New Year be Healthy, Happy, and Prosperous.

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