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Have you visited Harding Mudge Bush’s new Watercolor shop in downtown yet? It’s gorgeous! What beautiful artwork!

The Lowell Sun wrote a story about Mr. Bush’s new studio a few months back:

AYER — On April 1, Harding Mudge Bush opened a store at 30 Main St. to sell his watercolor paintings and note cards. It is a return to downtown Ayer for Bush, who previously sold his art and ran a picture-framing business for 11 years on Park Street before it closed 22 years ago.

Partial to painting New England landscapes and architecture, Bush, 75, is as active as ever. With the warming weather, Bush plans to head out with easel and canvas.

Bush pointed to a framed picture of a Boston building which he said was one of his favorite projects.

The painting happened to involve his wife Sally.

Several years ago, Sally was working on a project at the New England Historic Genealogical Society on Newbury Street in Boston. Harding tagged along for the four- to five-day project, and set up his easel on Commonwealth Avenue. The subject matter of the painting is the First Baptist Church of Boston.

“I’d do research,” said Sally Bush. “He’d paint across the street and we’d meet for lunch.”

Bush also enjoys painting scenes in the North End. Bush recalled fondly the courtesies extended to him by passersby, especially on Salem Street.

“The coffee and eclairs would arrive,” said Bush. “The meter maid would ask where I was parked and disable the meter.”

Boston scenes play prominently in Bush’s portfolio, including pieces depicting the State House, Boston Garden and the iconic swan boats.

Bush’s work also catalogues Ayer’s streetscape with images from the present and past. One favorite subject matter for Bush is Ayer Town Hall.

“I love that building,” said Bush. “I’ve painted it five or six times.”

In one Bush iteration, the Victorian-era red brick building is dwarfed by an enormous elm tree which stood at the corner of Main and Columbia streets. Bush said the tree was there when he painted the picture but was later felled by Dutch elm disease.

Another captured Ayer landmark is the Park Street Diner (now the Sovereign Bank). Behind the restaurant, Bush included the western profile of the P.N. Laggis men’s clothing store, which has remained in business through three generations of Laggis family members since 1916.

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We are very excited to announce a new member of our Pingry Hill Homes family: Camellia!

This adorable cape style home is an exciting addition that we are sure you’ll love. Starting at $405,900, the Camellia plan offers 1,858 SF of living space, a first floor master and 2.5 baths.

Interested in learning more about Camellia? Call us today at 978-772-4281 to discuss this lovely plan and make sure to watch our website for photos of this stunner! We’ll be releasing photos of this plan soon!


Flip flops are small but when you’ve got a ton of different pairs, they tend to take up a lot of valuable closet space. Here’s a great way to store those sassy summer sandals so they’re easy to get to and not precious space hoggers!



We have been absolutely off-the-wall busy this past week with 4 homes sold! It’s going to be a very busy 2013 so let’s hope this trend keeps up! 

Are you in the market for a new home? Have you driven through our beautiful neighborhood of newly constructed homes? Each home features stainless steel appliances, central air conditioning, tile and hardwood flooring, granite counters and much, much more. We have over 20 different house plans to fit your budget and with each home built on one acre, wooded lots, Pingry Hill is Ayer’s most coveted address. Couple that with town water and sewer and a low tax rate and it’s worth putting on your list of places to check out during your home search.

Home builders are cheering the latest Improving Markets Index, which suggests the sector may be finding its footing again.

While the triple-digit reading seen back in April remains elusive, Monday’s report from the National Association of Home Builders says that the list grew by four to 84 markets in July. The monthly index is based on a number of factors measured over six months, including employment growth, house-price appreciation and increases in single-family housing permits.

“The index appears to have stabilized following a dramatic slowdown over the past three months in which the index fell from 101 to 80,” writes Stephen East, a builder analyst with ISI Homebuilding Research, in a client note.

This recent batch of healing cities includes Phoenix and Tampa, which were among the areas hardest hit when the market crashed. Newcomers include smaller markets such as Prescott, Ariz., and Springfield, Mass. But a notable new addition was Houston, one of the nation’s largest housing markets.

“The geographic diversity and growing number of metros on the latest [index] help spotlight the improvements we have begun to see,” crows NAHB Chairman Barry Rutenberg, a builder from Gainesville, Fla.

Another NAHB report, this one with the Home Builders Institute, found that 40% of single-family home builders plan to work with laborers during the next year, indicating they expect to be building more homes. Nearly half of builders in the Midwest and West expect to hire, while 39% in the South do.

But the hard-hit sector continues limping along. Home builders complain that appraisals are being skewed by foreclosures. Credit standards also remain stringent, which is keeping plenty of would-be buyers out of the market. Indeed, seven markets fell off the improving markets list, including Rochester, N.Y., and Owensboro, Ky.

Still, industry watchers remain optimistic. “This is evidence that the housing recovery is slowly but surely taking root, one market at a time,” says NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.

Read original article here.