Long Beach Public Schools Are Top Rated!

Long Beach isn’t just beautiful sights and recreational areas; it’s also home to top-rated schools!  Getting your child the best education possible is top priority for families here in Long Beach– where schools have an average score of 9 when rated on GreatSchools.org.  With 114 preschools, 102 elementary schools, 59 middle schools, and 34 high schools, you are sure to find the perfect fit for your child no matter their grade level.

The highest rated school in Long Beach is Henry K-8 with a rating of 10/10, Intellectual Virtues Academy Middle School follows close behind with a score of 9/10.  Education is viewed as precious, and a driving passion in Long Beach and the educational opportunities allow your child to flourish.

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The Long Beach Unified School System has been ranked as one of the most excellent school systems in America. Winning the District of the Year award from Industry Drive and their publisher, Education Drive is perfect example of their achievements.  LBUSD ranks among one of the world’s highest performing school systems, with it being in the top three in the U.S. LBUSD has also won over twenty titles nationally that showcase the talent, passion, and determination the students have when it comes to education.

LB public schools also offer exciting opportunities for students interested in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), humanities, and the Arts.  STEM students have the chance to partake in student research, which can only benefit these students in their future endeavors.  There are also departmental programs of study, which allow students to explore the many niches of STEM.

The humanities department allows students to explore topics and encounter new experiences through their “Growth Mindset” program, which strives for students to be principled, balanced, and open minded communicators.  Students can partake in essay contests, book discussions, and have the ability to research topics of interest to them in the Media Center.

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The Arts department here in Long Beach also have reasons to boast- local ensembles are recognized at the state and national level, along with being named one of the Best 100 Communities for Music Education in America the past five years, there is no shortage of pride for LBUSD.

Long Beach schools have been rated amongst the top schools in the nation, and give your children the chance to prosper and find their academic passions.  The high standard of excellence held at Long Beach schools is enough of a reason to relocate to the beautiful city of Long Beach with assurance that your child will have the best opportunities possible.

4 Ways to use mirrors in your Home


Mirrors are essential to every home. They are a nice accessory to brighten up a room and make it appear bigger than it really is. Here are four ways to accessorize mirrors in your home according to design experts.

1 Floor Mirrors


Yes, it might sound crazy but not all mirrors belong on a wall. This is especially the case if you are dealing with larger mirrors. In the case, you use these “floor mirrors” designers recommend angling and/or leaning the mirror.  This will still give you the depth you’d expect to get from a mirror on the wall and also double as a standout furniture piece.

2 Dark Hallways


Do you have a dark hallway? Or a room that receives very little light? Bring these areas of your home to life by adding mirrors. Place the mirror where it will be able to reflect light, opposite or perpendicular to a window would be best. In the event of you selling your home, the more light reflected in your rooms can translate into more interest from prospective buyers.  

3 Bathroom Mirror


The best way to get rid of the claustrophobic feel that all bathrooms come standard with is to replace your small bathroom mirror with a large one. An alternative to help your bathroom space grow is to out multiple mirrors throughout the room. Get creative. The mirrors you add in the bathroom will play to the illusion of having more room.  

4 Use mirrors to showcase your view


One of the best ways to use mirrors according to design experts is to put them across from a nice view. Whether it’s your rose garden or view of the city, the mirrors will complement your space and allow you to have multiple amazing views instead of one.

Today’s Luxury Home Necessities

What is the difference between a luxury home and a conventional one? Times have changed and the luxury difference isn’t so much about paintings on the wall and more decorations than one can count anymore. Today, luxury living is much more about convenience. Take a look at what you need in your luxury home.



One current must-have luxury trend is an open floor plan. Having space where the kitchen and dining room are no longer separate has become more and more of a demand. But, having an open space in a house where everybody can interact freely is a desired trait in any luxury home. In Fact, experts have stated that open spaces are not the number one criteria cited by luxury home buyers.



A big part of what makes a luxury home is the stress-free vibes of living in one. A luxury home shouldn’t have any dings or work that needs to get done. The last thing anyone wants when living in a luxury home is to worry about replacing the roof or fixing pipes. A luxury home new or old should have modern renovations that let you sleep in peace.


Outdoor Living Space

There’s nothing more appealing to luxury homeowners than being able to bring the inside of the home outdoors in a safe and convenient way. From having an outdoor grilling space, fridges, and lots of storage outdoor living areas are more popular than ever and a must for luxury living.



We use to think of spas as an experience that one could only get at the salon. But, in today’s luxury homes the bathroom can include just about all the necessities you would find in a spa. From head to toe shower jets, heat warmers and large bathtubs a luxury bathroom can help de-stress after a long day.

Lighting Trends for 2018 that will make your space feel luxurious


If there is one thing that can make your home either look dated or give your home a new sparkle it’s lighting. Lighting can help highlight areas in your home and complement decor. Take a look at a few lighting trends in 2018 that will make your home shine.

Mix Together Different Lighting

If you want to go for a more eclectic look mix and matching lighting together, whether it’s different shapes or hues can bring about a new look to any room. Depending on the arrangement it could become very stylish.

Large Fixtures

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Modern lighting trends are veering towards one direction, large scale. It’s important to keep in mind space when adding lighting fixtures, but having a large fixture that acts as the centerpiece of a room is a trend that is here to stay in 2018.


Aside from being large in scale like we mentioned above, chandeliers also over exciting shapes. A playful chandelier is a great addition to any living room.

Bubble Lighting

Glass bubble lighting is a modern representation of wonderment and a great addition to any space. These trendy lighting fixtures will make a strong appearance throughout 2018 home decor.


Make your living room a clutter-free zone


The living room is the center of comfort and the place everyone in your house gravitates towards. The worst thing about the living room is that it can also be the place everyone drops of their shoes, clothes, blankets and whatever else they with them. The mess eventually tends to pile up. Rest assured though, here a few tips to make and keep your living room a clutter-free zone.

Install storage space

The living room is known for piling up clothes, so prevent it from landing around the room by installing a rack or opening a closet where visitors can put their coats, hats and other belongings. Having a basket in a corner can also help be a designated drop off zone for footwear. Remind everyone in the home where things go to create habits.

Manage your coffee table

Your living room coffee table is part of what ties the room together, but it is also victim to forgotten mail, magazines, and newspapers. After a few days, a coffee table can rack up piles of unread papers. Go through your stack and get rid of the old and keep just a few of the important items and new magazine issues. Buying a small basket to store them in will help remind you when to flush out the old with the new.

Remove excess furniture

Although your furniture looks beautiful cramming too many things into the living room can take away from the overall look of the space. If you’re squeezing in or shifting your body to get past furniture it might be a good idea to find another place for it. Keeping furniture to a minimum will open up the living room and showcase the pieces you do have.

New Decorating Ideas for the New Year


As the new year is now upon us we like to change up our lives in preparation for the new year. Many of these changes or resolutions focus on the bettering of ourselves. To improve ourselves and our lives we must start with the home we live in. Having the right feelings about our homes is important to our inspiration and motivation. The holidays may have taken a toll on our bank accounts, making it hard to freshen up our homes for the new year. Here are a few ways in which you can easily change up your home for next to nothing.


Accents with Impact

There is nothing easier than sprucing up your home with accent pillows and throws. Buying new furniture for each easy is unrealistic, but adding pillows to a couch or chair can change the whole aesthetic of the room. These pillows can add a pop of color to a neutral colored couch. You can layer and add pillows to fit the dynamic of the room. Also being able to change of the look of the room with each season is a plus. Adding runners to the heaviest foot traffic areas will save on wear and tear of the flooring along with adding feng shui.


Deck the halls

Painting a room can also change the way a room looks. Even choosing to paint one accent wall can bring a room to life. When choosing a color, pick neutral colors that can easily be matched when you look for new accent pillows and throws. Warm, neutral colors usually go best with pops of color with accent walls. Wallpaper is not only for your grandmother’s house, today you can find any different, modern patterns. Wallpaper is an easy alternative to paint, which can make your home look like it’s straight out of a magazine. You can also use the wallpaper to line the backing of a bookshelf.


Turn on the Lights

Since the new year occurs in the dead of winter, sunlight is minimal. Proper lighting can transform a whole room. You decorated your home with a holiday light show, now it’s time to translate that into a year-round look. Add additional lamps to poorly lit areas. The trick is to incorporate various lighting techniques. A properly lit room may have lighting from above, along with a traditional table lamp and a standing lamp in the corner.  Watch what turning a few lights on can do for a room.


Decorate with nature

Replace the poinsettias and garland with fresh flowers or greenery. Some of the best home decorations come from nature. A new plant or indoor tree can add life to a dull room. If you have a history of killing plants opt for a cactus, which can be nearly impossible to kill, or silk arrangements. Nowadays they come in different arrangements and are indistinguishable from the real thing.

6 Truths You Need To Know About Buying a Home This Winter


Luckily for us here in Southern California, winter means a slightly lower temperature average and a bit more rain. Unlike most of the country, life doesn’t change much once winter months hit. This is true for the real estate market too. While it does tend to slow down a bit, winter is still a great or even better to buy a home, but there are a few things you should know first.

Here is what you need to know about the winter real estate market:

1. Slimmer pickings, but also less competition

It is true, there are fewer homes on the market in the winter than any other time of the year. But this should not deter you from buying this season. While the inventory may be down, so are the number of buyers out looking for a home. This means you, as a buyer, will have less competition.

2. Abundance of starter homes

For first-time buyers, this is the time of the year you should be looking. According to Trulia, the inventory of less-expensive starter homes actually increases by 7 percent during the last three months of the year.

3. FHA buyers are more likely to win a bid

FHA buyers tend to be less appealing to sellers because of their loose requirements compared to those with a traditional loan and bigger down payments. With less competition, sellers are more open to FHA buyers.

4. There go the open houses and bidding wars

A typical open house during the summer can attract 50-100 buyers with a listing often receiving more than 10 offers. In the winter, the opposite occurs. An open house may attract only a dozen serious buyers with one to two offers. If you’re looking for zero competition, stick to the few weeks right around Christmas.

5. Interest rates are still low

The last few years, we’ve been blessed with low-interest rates. Many experts believe that in the new year the Federal Reserve will raise rates. If you’ve been thinking of buying a home, now is the time to do so while rates remain low.

6. Deals are ready to be made

Sellers in the winter are often motivated by some other factor, such as job relocation. Also, homes that have been on the market since the fall are also more susceptible to accepting a lowball offer.

Low-Calorie Thanksgiving Recipe Alternatives


Mash potatoes, stuffing, yams, ham, turkey, and don’t forget the apple, pumpkin, olallieberry, and pecan pie! Just the mere reading of these foods make us salivate. We stuff ourselves until we hate ourselves, we pile our plate up with food, appetizers, drinks and desserts. This is the time of the year where our healthy food habits go right out the window! Not only are we overeating, but we are overeating high-calorie food.

To ease the guilt this year, here are a few lower-calorie Thanksgiving recipes you can create so you don’t gain that those holiday pounds.

Salads and Starters

California Spinach Salad
For a delicious and nutrient defense salad, try this spinach salad.

8 cups fresh spinach leaves
2 avocados
3 handfuls of alfalfa sprouts
2 bell peppers
For the dressing:
1/4 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1 medium lime, juiced
1/4 cup chopped chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce (about 1/3 of a medium pepper)
1 tablespoon fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Pepper, to taste
What to do:
Pile on the desired amount of spinach leaves in a salad bowl or plate.
Slice up the avocado and the bell pepper, and add to salad.
Sprinkle a handful of alfalfa sprouts on top.
Make dressing. There are two ways to do this: If you have a small food processor or blender, throw all of the ingredients in it and pulse until well-combined. If doing things by hand, chop all ingredients very finely and stir until well-combined.
Drizzle over the salad and toss to combine.


“Vegan” Creamed Corn
For those who may be lactose intolerant or the vegans in your family, this is the perfect spin on a classic Thanksgiving favorite.

7 Ingredients
2 cups frozen corn kernels
1 can (15 ounces) coconut milk
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon chopped scallions

Combine corn and coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until coconut milk has evaporated a bit and thickened, about 15 minutes.
Once the mixture has reached the desired consistency, mix in parsley, red pepper flakes, and scallions.
Quinoa and Sweet Potato-Stuffed Mushrooms
Try adding a new dish to this year’s Thanksgiving feast that both vegetarians and meat eaters will love!

4 sweet potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
3 cups greens (spinach or kale work well)
2 cups cooked quinoa
6 portobello mushroom caps, wiped clean

Heat oven to 450 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Toss sweet potatoes with oil and salt and pepper to taste on the baking sheet. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, flipping halfway through, until pieces are golden brown and cooked through.
Just before the sweet potatoes are done cooking, remove sheet from oven and add spinach on top. Place back in oven for the last 2 to 3 minutes. Once spinach has wilted, remove pan from oven and cool until veggies are cool enough to handle. Lower oven to 400 degrees.
In a medium bowl, mix quinoa, sweet potatoes, and greens. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Brush both sides of mushrooms with olive oil, and place gills up on the baking sheet. Spoon quinoa and sweet potato mixture into caps, mounding slightly in the center. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake for 15 to 25 minutes, or until mushrooms are cooked through.


Quinoa Apple Cake

Made with whole quinoa, this hearty cake is both naturally sweet and filling.

1 cup quinoa
8 tablespoons salted butter, melted
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup raisins
2 apples, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
1 teaspoon ginger (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine quinoa with 2 cups water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook for 10 minutes, or until quinoa is tender. Drain well and set aside.
Dip a pastry brush in melted butter and use it to grease inside of a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.
Put remaining melted butter in a large bowl, and mix with brown sugar and raisins until evenly distributed. Add apples and cooked quinoa, and stir to combine.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and ginger and nutmeg, if using. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir to evenly combine.
Scrape mixture into prepared pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and top of cake is golden brown.
Let cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a cooling rack. Let cool completely before cutting to help cake maintain its shape.