The Buzz, February 2009


Sip-T launches its own brand of tea

Sip-T, a new tea blending business, is set to open at 314 E. Holly St. Suite 206, upstairs from Wise Awakenings.

The business will start out with 15 types of teas that owner Cheyenne Black has created from personal recipes. All of the teas are organic and fair trade, Black said.

The business will do mostly wholesale and the location will not be a retail location, Black said. But she has applied to set up a booth at the Farmers Market, which opens in March.

For more information, visit


New business to emphasize Feng Shui and staging

Natural holistic health specialist Jan Templeton has expanded her services to include Feng Shui and home staging.

Her new company, en’harmony, located at 3710 Donovan Ave., offers health for the body, home and office.

Feng Shui is a complex body of knowledge that reveals ways to balance the energies of the environment to improve health, attitude and wealth. Templeton can work with professionals and their offices, homeowners with their living spaces, and Realtors in staging homes that may be otherwise slow to sell.

Templeton has been in natural health practice for more than 15 years. She continues to educate clients, help them identify and manage stress to retrain the body to heal itself, utilizing biofeedback, homeopathy, herbs, therapeutic grade essential oils, and vitamins.

For more information, visit, or call 647-7667.


New event planner opens for wedding season

True Bliss Events, a wedding and event planning business, is now in full swing.

Owner Anne Rasmussen decided to started the business after successfully planning her own wedding last April.

“A lot of people say at the end of their own wedding, ‘Phew, I don’t want to do that again.’ But I loved it,” she said. “When I look back at the last 20 years, it feels like I’ve been doing event planning my whole life.”

For now, Rasmussen is operating the business out of her home. For more information, call 319-3219 or visit


New retail store to open on State Street

State Street could get a new retail store as early as March.

Sedro-Woolley resident and online entrepreneur Brian Kingsberry is planning to open a store at 1031 N. State St. #110 that blends his two online businesses:, which sells clothing for men and, which showcases Kingsberry’s professional photography services.

“My store will be very unique,” Kingsberry said in a e-mail.

Mens Choice is the store name given on the Bellingham business registration, which was issued just after the first of 2009.

Kingsberry said if he can get everything ready in time, he is planning a March 1 grand opening.

For more information about Brian Kingsberry’s online businesses, visit and


CrossFit X to open in Barkley

The Barkley District will soon have a new workout studio.

Construction is underway for CrossFit X at 3130 Howe Place Suite 102. Owner Travis HoGlin, formerly a loan officer for Countrywide Home Loans, said he plans to offer workout classes that follow the CrossFit fitness model.

CrossFit started about seven years ago in California and focuses on 10 major skills: cardiovascular, endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, coordination, agility, balance and accuracy.

“So we design workouts that address all 10 areas of fitness,” HoGlin said. “We will also come up with a workout of the day.”

In college, HoGlin played Division 1 soccer, but hung up his cleats after injuring his back. Since then, he has been playing hockey and running triathlons with his wife, Alycia.

“I feel that had I come across the fitness regime I have now, I wouldn’t have had the back problems I did,” HoGlin said.

HoGlin said he plans to open the exercise studio by the beginning of April. For more information, call 223-2051 or visit


New salon opens in Fairhaven

Essence Nail & Spa is planning to open this month at 907 Harris Ave.

The business will offer everything from pedicures to artificial nails out of the 1,500-square-foot space, said Susan Huynh. She has operated a nail salon in Florida for the past nine years and is helping her brother-in-law Michael Ngo open his own shop.

Huynh said the salon should be open by the beginning of February. For more information, call 933-1358.


Former sign company owner opens Sprout Creative

Teresa Schmidt, former co-owner of Signs By Tomorrow, recently opened Sprout Creative, an ad copywriting business.

Schmidt ran Signs By Tomorrow for five years with David Wiggs, but she said they had attained their goals for the business and it was time to move on.

“It was a good time to have a lifestyle change and be in more control of our time,” Schmidt said.

However, Schmidt is no stranger to her new trade. She said she spent several years at an East Coast ad agency where she worked as a copywriter and production manager.

“I’ve always been an ad copy admirer and aficionado,” Schmidt said.

Schmidt said she is excited to work with ad agencies, web developers and graphic designers to produce top quality advertising content.

“Advertising is a kick,” Schmidt said. “I love everything about the business.”

For more information, call 961-4055 or visit


Former public defender opens practice

There’s a new private attorney in town.

Geraldine Coleman, who has been a Whatcom County public defender for the past 10 years, has opened her own law office in the Crown Plaza Building at 114 W. Magnolia St. Suite 434.

Coleman said she will work in criminal defense, but hopes to branch out into family and probate law.

“I will mostly be doing criminal defense because that is what I know,” Coleman said.

To contact Geraldine Coleman, call 392-3901.


Edward Jones office moving to Barkley

Local Edward Jones financial adviser Rob Naidu is planning to move his office from 601 Northshore Drive Suite E to a larger office at 3130 Howe Place Suite 101.

The new 1,100-square-foot office is about 350 square feet larger than the current space in Silver Beach, which has been an Edward Jones office for about 10 years, though Naidu has only been there for the past three. Naidu said he is still waiting for final permits, but would like to move in this spring.

For more information, call 647-5761.


May Day Spa-lon opens for singles gatherings

Terrie May, owner of May Day Spa-lon located at 127 W. Kellogg Road, is planning to open up her spa/salon (spa-lon) every Sunday starting Sunday, Feb. 15, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for an intimate and elegant singles gathering featuring wine, cheese and an opportunity to meet someone new this year.

Annmarie Krug, May Day Spa-lon’s general manager, said that she and May have spoken with several of their single clients who wanted to meet someone in a comfortable and personal environment as opposed to a noisy bar or club.

“This is going to be a cozy, quaint meeting place for single people to come together to talk about their common interests,” Krug said.

Space is limited so all participants must RSVP by calling 676-6288.

May Day Spa-lon is open Monday through Saturday and is a full-service salon and small spa.


Scott Davis renovates new office

Scott Davis, a local certified public accountant, is a busy man these days. Not only is tax season in high swing, but Davis has been remodeling a home at 2211 Elm St. near Broadway to be his new office.

Davis bought the home back in October and has been slowly converting the space to house his two-person company.

“I’ve wanted to own my own space for a long time,” Davis said. “But it’s hard to find something that is zoned properly and is the right size.”

Davis is currently located downtown in the Bellingham National Bank Building. He said he would like to move soon, but will probably wait until tax season concludes in April.

For more information, call 647-1200.


Lakeway mixed-use project receives permit

Troy Muljat’s proposed mixed-use project planned for 1311 Lakeway Drive was issued a planned development permit on Jan. 6.

The building would have a total of 24,392 square feet on three floors with 57 spaces of underground parking, retail and office space on the first two floors and eight residential spaces on the top floor. However, Muljat must still apply for building permits before construction can begin.

Muljat said now that he has the planned development permit, he will work with architects to draw up more detailed floor plans for the city in order to get the building permits.

“It’s kind of a two-step process,” Muljat said.

Muljat said he currently owns the land and the existing homes on the property, but has not yet applied to finance construction.

“We don’t anticipate that there will be any problems,” Muljat said. “But market conditions will dictate when this project comes out of the ground.”

For more information, call Bellingham planner Brian Smart at 778-8355.


Median home price drops 4.5 percent

Whatcom County’s housing market in 2008 suffered its first drop in prices this decade, but the more significant change was in the decline in the number of homes sold.

The median sales price of residential units sold in Whatcom County during 2008 dipped 4.5 percent to $276,900 and the average price slipped 4.4 percent to $317,740, according to Lylene Johnson of The Muljat Group South office in Fairhaven. With many areas of the country experiencing double-digit declines, this is a positive sign for the local housing market, she noted.

However, Johnson added, the number of homes sold in the county last year plunged 26.4 percent to 1,981 — well off the decade’s high of 3,052 units sold in 2003 as well as the previous low of 2,199 units sold in 2000.

“The turmoil in the stock market and banking industry, combined with a slowing economy and a local housing market that was due to cool off led many prospective buyers to postpone decisions,” Johnson said.

Statistics for the largest communities within the county didn’t vary much. Bellingham’s median sales price for the year dropped 5 percent to $299,000 and its number of sales fell 28 percent. Lynden fared better than the rest of the county with its median sales price down only 1 percent to $296,975 and its number of sales waning 16 percent.

The county’s condominium market experienced similar difficulties as houses, with the median sales price down 3.4 percent to $191,937 and condo sales falling 32 percent to 466.


Residential statistics for all of 2008:

n Whatcom County: Median sales price, $276,900, down 4.5 percent; average sales price, $317,740, down 4.4 percent; total homes sold, 1,981, down 26.4 percent; average days on the market, 101, up 2 percent.

Bellingham: Median sales price, $299,000, down 5 percent; average sales price, $359,151, down 4 percent; total homes sold, 881, down 28 percent; average days on the market, 121, down 2 percent.

Lynden: Median sales price, $296,975, down 1 percent; average sales price, $324,636, up 2 percent; total homes sold, 182, down 16 percent; average days on the market, 101, up 32 percent.

Ferndale: Median sales price, $290,000, down 5 percent; average sales price, $309,345, down 7 percent; total homes sold, 257, down 28 percent; average days on the market, 103, down 2 percent.

Sudden Valley: Median sales price, $255,750, down 6 percent; average sales price, $267,795, down 10 percent; total homes sold, 142, down 29 percent; average days on the market, 102, up 6 percent.

Blaine/Birch Bay: Median sales price, $249,925, down 4 percent; average sales price, $281,518, down 14 percent; total homes sold, 262, down 24 percent; average days on the market, 113, down 5 percent.

Nooksack Valley (median sales price unavailable): Average sales price, $274,054, down 7 percent; total homes sold, 93, down 2 percent; average days on the market, 91, down 10 percent.

Mount Baker (median sales price unavailable): Average sales price, $181,330, up 8 percent; total homes sold, 120, down 31 percent; average days on the market, 104, down 5 percent.


Katie’s Cupcakes to open in March

Fairhaven will soon have a new place for you to satisfy that sweet tooth.

Katie’s Cupcakes will be taking over the former location of the bunch at 1005 Harris Ave. Owner Katie Swanson said she got the idea for her shop from seeing how popular cupcake shops are in New York.

She plans to offer an array of cupcakes and cookies, from the good old standards to some surprising weekly specials. Personally, Swanson’s tastes are closer to the standards.

“My favorites are a chocolate cupcake with vanilla buttercream or carrot cake with cream cheese frosting,” she said.

This is Swanson’s first time opening a business and she plans to open by March 1. For more information, call 305-2095.


Magnolia Mortgage moves to Young St.

A local mortgage company has moved into a new office.

Magnolia Mortgage Company recently moved into its new 1,000-square-foot home at 2011 Young St. Suite 101 from its former space since 1996 in the Crown Plaza Building at 114 W. Magnolia St. Suite 108.

Steve Gray, the firm’s broker/owner, said the move will give the company’s clients access to better parking and put the company closer to one of its partner businesses, Whatcom Land Title.

“This way our customers won’t be timing their visits on the meters and we will be right next to one of our principal business partners,” Gray said.

Magnolia Mortgage Company is a full-service mortgage broker offering real estate loans throughout Washington state. For more information, call 715-2001 or visit


Anker Cafe finds new home on Cornwall

Nearly two months after leaving the former Fantasia Coffee location, The Anker Cafe is back.

Bill and Katy Anker are planning to reopen the coffee shop in the 8th Day Building located at 1426 Cornwall Ave. The couple are taking half of the space, approximately 1,600 square feet, and have been doing construction on the site for several weeks now. Construction costs are estimated to be $50,000, according to permit data.

“There has been quite a bit of construction, that’s why we haven’t opened sooner,” said Katy Anker.

The business model will stay the same and the shop will host local music and open mic nights. It will also continue to serve coffee, soups and sandwiches, Anker said. The Ankers are planning to have the shop open around the beginning of February.

For more information, e-mail


Del’s Feed to close Bellingham location

Del’s Feed & Farm Supply has announced it will close its Bellingham location at 4781 Guide Meridian. Del’s officials also said they will not seek a new location in Bellingham and liquidation of the store’s assets began on Friday, Jan. 2.

Scott Whitfield, Del’s district manager, said the Bellingham location was approaching the end of its lease and the company felt it was best to focus its efforts on the Mount Vernon location.

“This was a business decision based on many factors, but we hope to better serve those customers in Mount Vernon and at our other store locations,” Whitfield said in a press release. “The closing of the store is not a reflection on the employees or the community. For our customers, we’ll be honoring all warranties at our other stores and local service centers.”

Del’s will continue to operate a total of 20 store locations throughout the state of Washington. Del’s offers a wide selection of products tailored to those who enjoy the rural lifestyle, and specializes in equine, livestock and pet merchandise. For more information about Del’s store locations throughout Washington, visit


Cordata dentist purchases new office

Cordata Dental may soon be moving to another location along Cordata Parkway.

According to county property documents, Chris Rosinski DDS, owner of Cordata Dental currently located at 333 Calluna Court #102, has purchased a 2,300-square-foot office located in the Parkway Professional Building at 4540 Cordata Parkway Suite 105, for $529,000 with his wife, Ashlea Shepherd Rosinski.

Rosinski could not be reached for comment. However, one of the dental office’s employees confirmed that the Rosinskis purchased the office, but was unaware of a timeline for moving the business.


Cohousing group submits plans

Millworks Cohousing, the group behind a proposed 1.77-acre cohousing development project to be located at 2600 Mill Ave., has submitted a site plan to be reviewed by Bellingham’s planning & community development department.

The group’s site plan features eight housing units plus a common house, open space, a community garden, eco-friendly porous concrete parking areas, pedestrian trails and a rain garden.

According to the city’s public notice of application and pending action, the development would have a maximum of 10 houses, including the existing residence, which would be converted into the common house. The site plan also includes a wetland buffer enhancement to maintain the site’s critical areas.

Additionally, the group has requested a variance from street improvement requirements and a deviation from the 15-foot setbacks for parking areas.

The group’s cohousing, design review and variance applications require a public hearing before the hearings examiner, which has not yet been scheduled. If the variance requests are approved, the design review board will forward a recommendation to the city planning director.

To learn more about Millworks Cohousing, read Isaac Bonnell’s article from July 2008 here:


Fairhaven Paper Doll closes

After almost three years in business, The Paperdoll Boutique and Gallery closed its 10th Street location in Fairhaven. The store is located at 1200 10th St. Suite 103, next to Whimsy and The Fairhaven Village Inn.

Owner Shultzie Fay could not immediately be reached for comment on the closure. She stated in a press release and on her blog, however, that the Paperdoll will continue to operate its downtown arts district location at 312 West Champion St., carrying curated paper, clothing, gifts and accessories from independent and environmentally friendly designers.

All products, fixtures and décor from the Fairhaven location will be on sale and priced to 40 to 75 percent off January 5th through January 31st. Customers interested in display cases, lighting and wall décor can check Bellingham Cragislist as well as The Paperdoll Web site at for prices and units available.

“Thank you for your support through the last three years and we look forward to serving up a healthy dose of indie paper and fashion wares for years to come,” she stated The Paperdoll Blog Space,

For more information regarding the closure, check The Paperdoll Blog Space or telephone the shop at (360) 738-3655.


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