Friday, December 27, 2013

New Year, New Fees

Many Princeton Landing homeowners will be surprised when they look at their maintenance bill this month—but not as surprised as residents in Parcel 1. The fee increases for many parcels once again demonstrate the inability (or is it unwillingness?) of the community's leadership to control costs. But this year Parcel 1 has a new fee on its bills—for a "Litigation Fund" amounting to as much as $90 per residence. There was no warning at all from the Board of Directors, the Parcel 1 committee or  the management company that this fee was coming. There is no explanation on the bill. And there is no indication whether it's going to appear each month or is a one-time charge. This is yet another example of the lack of transparency on the part of Princeton Landing's current leadership.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Princeton Landing's Snowy Mess

Even the Longford Landscapes snow plow operator who made this mess admitted it looks terrible. He had just plowed the snow out of Parcel 4 and driven it up onto a berm in Parcel 6. Large piles that include snowy dog urine from the street were plowed up high into the tree branches.

With open common areas so close by, this really wasn't necessary. And our previous snow removal contractor of over 25 years, Shearer Penn/SavATree, didn't do this. Some of us know because we've been here long enough to remember. This isn't the quality of service we once had. What is happening in Princeton Landing?

The photos below were taken at berms next to homes in Parcels 6, 7 and 12. And we wonder how our landscape gets damaged. 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Nelson Mandela

1918 – 2013

No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.

— from Long Walk to Freedom

Sunday, December 1, 2013

December Recycling Dates

The recycling dates in Princeton Landing for December are the 2nd, the 16th and the 30th. There is also a link to these dates in the right-hand column under Popular Posts.

Monday, November 25, 2013

More Tarps in Princeton Landing

More roofs in Princeton Landing have been covered in tarps—these are visible from the Loop Road.

Friday, November 22, 2013

November 22, 1963

Photo: Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs.
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Question of the Week

What was Princeton Landing's ex-maintenance man doing speeding around the Loop Road this weekend gesturing wildly at homeowners?

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Welcome to Princeton Landing

Here's how Princeton Landing is welcoming residents and their visitors this weekend.

Fall Back

Remember to move your clocks back one hour tonight. Daylight saving time ends at 2:00 am on Sunday, November 3.

Friday, November 1, 2013

November Recycling Dates

The recycling dates in Princeton Landing for November are the 4th and the 18th. There is also a link to these dates in the right-hand column under Popular Posts.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Shikantaza at South Brunswick Jazz Café

Shikantaza (left to right): Lori Pantaleo, Brandon Lewin, Doug Miller, Robert Bullington, Tanya Saunders, Bernhard Geiger. Photo by Jonathan Michalik.

On Friday, November 1, 2013, the jazz trio Shikantaza will be performing at the South Brunswick Jazz Café. The word shikantaza, translated literally as just sitting, refers to a form of Japanese Zen Buddhist meditation. The ensemble seeks to create musical environments that quiet the mind and open the heart. Shikantaza explores the jazz canon, making familiar works uniquely their own, and offers original compositions developed improvisationally. Their music draws inspiration from many genres. Shikantaza features Doug Miller on piano, Bernhard Geiger on acoustic bass, Brandon Lewin on percussion, and special guests Lori Pantaleo, Tanya Saunders and Robert Bullington on vocals.

Jazz Café performances are sponsored by the South Brunswick Arts Commission. They are held monthly on Friday evenings from 8 to 10 pm at the Herb Eckert Auditorium in the Senior Center at the South Brunswick Municipal Complex, located at 540 Route 522, Monmouth Junction. Admission is $6 and light refreshments are served. Doors open at 7:30 pm. For more information call 732-329-4000, ext. 7635.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Treat or Trick?

TREAT: Princeton Landing's Association complies with FVCSA Governing Documents and replaces shrubs and tree it removed last May.

TRICK: See photos below.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Monday, October 21, 2013

Under the Harvest Moon

by Carl Sandburg

Under the harvest moon,
When the soft silver
Drips shimmering
Over the garden nights,
Death, the gray mocker,
Comes and whispers to you
As a beautiful friend
Who remembers.

    Under the summer roses
When the flagrant crimson
Lurks in the dusk
Of the wild red leaves,
Love, with little hands,
Comes and touches you
With a thousand memories
And asks you
Beautiful, unanswerable questions.

                                      Photo: ihave3kids

Thursday, October 17, 2013

KGA Fall Foliage Walk

Photo: Jonathan Michalik 

Kingston Greenways Association will host its annual fall foliage walk on Sunday, October 20, 2013, at 2 pm. In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the founding of Princeton Nurseries, Rick Henkel will lead a walk through the Nurseries' Kingston site. Rick was formerly Sales Manager for Princeton Nurseries, where he worked for 32 years. After leaving the Nurseries, he founded Princeton Horticultural Services, which he continues to run. Rick has an extraordinary knowledge of trees and knows the Kingston site intimately.

The walk will start at the Mapleton Preserve outside the Main Office for the D&R Canal State Park at 145 Mapleton Road in Kingston. The walk will last about two hours. For more information, call 609-683-0483.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

More Tarps — Now They're Brown

The tarps covering roofs in the community aren't just blue—there are brown ones, too. Again we ask the question: Why isn't Princeton Landing repairing roof leaks more promptly?

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Gold Is Best

Have you seen these hilarious videos from Conan O'Brien about Apple's new gold iPhone 5s?

Monday, October 7, 2013

More Blue Tarps in Princeton Landing

Here's another Princeton Landing home with a blue tarp on its roof. Why aren't the roofs in the community being repaired promptly? If you've been waiting for a roof repair, let us know.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

October Recycling Dates

The recycling dates in Princeton Landing for October are the 7th and the 21st. There is also a link to these dates in the right-hand column under Popular Posts.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Question of the Week: Roof Repair

Have you or your neighbors had a recent experience with a roof repair at Princeton Landing?

If so, send us an email. We'd love to hear about it.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

National Public Lands Day at Mapleton Preserve

Friends of Princeton Nursery Lands will host its annual National Public Lands Day work session in the Mapleton Preserve on Saturday, September 28, 2013, from 2 to 4 pm. National Public Lands Day is the nation's largest hands-on volunteer effort to improve and enhance the public lands Americans enjoy. Friends of Princeton Nursery Lands invites the public to play a part and contribute to the restoration of the Mapleton Preserve, the former home of Princeton Nurseries and a significant historical site in Central New Jersey.

FPNL's focus this year is clearing small trees, brush and vines, mulching trees in the Arboretum, and collecting litter. Volunteers are asked to bring their own loppers, pruning shears, saws, and rakes. Sturdy shoes, work gloves, long pants, long-sleeved shirts and hats are also recommended. Refreshments will be served.

The entrance to the Mapleton Preserve/D&R Canal State Park is at 145 Mapleton Road in Kingston. For more information, visit the FPNL website or call 609-683-0483.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Stump Hill Revisited

Almost a year after Superstorm Sandy knocked down trees near the tennis courts, nothing has been done to restore the appearance of the area—other than the removal of the fallen trees. This very visible spot, seen as you round the turn on the Loop Road near the tennis courts, is still strewn with weeds and tree stumps. This once beautiful area, which we've dubbed Stump Hill, is a blight on Princeton Landing.

Monday, September 16, 2013

PSE&G Power Outage

At about 9 pm a power outage occurred in parcels along the outer side of the Loop Road in Princeton Landing. As of a few minutes before 10 pm, PSE&G was reporting that its crew is currently working to restore power and that restoration is estimated by 11:33 pm on September 16.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Dead as a Dodo

This large shrub at the entrance to Princeton Landing was just planted in spring.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Question of the Week: Blue Tarps

Two homes in the community have blue tarps covering the skylights on their roofs. The tarps, which are plainly visible from the Loop Road, have been up for quite some time. What's up with this makeshift repair? If there's a roof leak or if a skylight needs to be replaced, why is it taking so long? Instead of a timely fix, must months pass before "We get things done"?

How does this affect the rest of us who do not have tarps? Well, think how potential buyers might feel about Princeton Landing when they see things like this. Do the tarps indicate that other roofs are likely to develop leaks? Do they suggest a lack of concern or care for the way the community is being maintained? Is that not likely to lower our property values? And consider this: Would you want to live in a community that doesn't promptly repair its own leaky roofs?

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Sunday, September 1, 2013

September Recycling Dates

The recycling dates in Princeton Landing for September are the 9th and the 23rd. There is also a link to these dates in the right-hand column under Popular Posts.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

August 31, 1963

President Kennedy aboard the "Honey Fitz" off Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, August 31, 1963. Photograph by Cecil Stoughton, White House, in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013

Princeton Nurseries Kingston Celebrates 100th

The Friends of Princeton Nursery Lands invites members, friends and neighbors to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Princeton Nurseries Kingston site on Saturday, September 7, 2013, in the Mapleton Preserve. Princeton Nurseries is an important part of Kingston's history. The preserved portions of the former nursery lands are a key part of the Kingston greenbelt. Read about the history of Princeton Nurseries here.

The anniversary celebration, from 1 to 4 pm, will feature Princeton Nurseries' displays, historic vehicles and live music by The Bare Root Band, which includes William Flemer IV and friends. Refreshments and birthday cake will be served. The event is free and all are welcome. The Mapleton Preserve is located at 145 Mapleton Road in Kingston. If approaching the preserve from Princeton Landing, the entrance is on the right, marked by a sign for the D&R Canal State Park Headquarters.

Extra hands are needed, so if you can assist with set-up, registration, serving refreshments or parking, please call 609-683-0483 to volunteer.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Recent Visitor — Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Click on the photos to get a closer look at her.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Haste Lays Waste

Yesterday morning many of us heard the noise of large mowers racing over our lawns. On July 16 we were told by Management that Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are mowing days, so this burst of activity on a Friday was unexpected. Even more surprising was the speed with which the work took place. The mowers were sprinting across the turf, the men with the edgers were practically running with their tools, and the blower team went through the property at a record clip. It looked like an attempt to compress three days of work into one and mow the whole community in a single day. But speed is not always an asset, especially in getting a job done well.

Now it's likely that the Association will blame the weather for this compressed schedule. It rained very heavily on Tuesday morning. But it was certainly dry enough to mow on Wednesday afternoon and all day Thursday. So why not spread the mowing over those days? Why try to do it all at once? Why do a job in so much haste that it can't be done right? The Landscape Committee and Management need to consider these questions. We need better planning, more advance notice to residents and more careful execution if we are ever going to get the Princeton Landing landscape back into decent shape.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Friday, August 9, 2013

Question of the Week

We've written here before about both poison ivy and Princeton Landing's continued bad decision not to mulch. The use of mulch helps control this noxious weed. So it was probably inevitable that we'd see poison ivy growing on the property—maybe on the berms as we usually do or in other brushy areas around the community. What was surprising was to spot poison ivy growing in full view in a bed next to a homeowner's driveway. As you can see from the photos below, it's a good size plant and its trailers are making their way through the bed. Actually, what's most surprising is that the poison ivy was not noticed by anyone on the parcel landscape walks or by any member of the landscape team. Does the Association feel any responsibility to remove poison ivy so close to homes in Princeton Landing?

Monday, August 5, 2013

What Are We Paying For? (#2)

Last Wednesday, July 31, a Princeton Landing resident left a comment on our post "We Get Things Done?" (#3). This resident, who lives in Parcel 1, spoke of being "embarrassed to invite people over because everything looks so shoddy . . . mainly the awful trim and the grounds."

This disturbing comment caused us to revisit our two posts about the wood trim in the Parcel 1 condos. The first piece, a Question of the Week, dates back to June 8, 2012—over a year ago. It showed photos of just some of the rotted wood trim and asked the question, "When will the wood trim in the Parcel 1 condos be repaired and painted?"

We revisited that post about six months later on December 3, 2012, asking again, "When will the wood trim in the Parcel 1 condos be repaired and painted? Some of the trim has been replaced—though not painted—but much of it is still rotted or missing."

We shot the photos below a few days ago. As you can see, the trim is in the same state. Much of it is still rotted or missing around the windows and has not been replaced. The trim that was replaced still has not been repainted.

There are 120 units in Parcel 1. If each unit pays a maintenance fee averaging $300 a month, that would be over $400,000 a year to the Association from residents in Parcel 1. Again, we must ask, "What Are We Paying For?"