Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tierra Pacifica HOA Directory Coming Soon!

The "Tierra Pacifica HOA Directory" is in the works! Joan, our HOA President, solicited lot owner input a while back in order to help us compile a directory of HOA members. This is a voluntary listing for the purpose of information and networking. Only those HOA members in good standing who submitted their information will be included. In addition, the directory will only be distributed to those who submitted their information. It's not too late to be included. If you would like to add your information to the soon-to-be-released directory, you may submit your information to me directly at: dakaleta@sbcglobal.net

Information to be included: Lot number; owner name(s); co-owner name(s), if applicable; children's names and ages; hometown; e-mail address; and phone number(s) (home and in Costa Rica, if applicable). *Note: We did not solicit this information previously, but now ask that you consider including the following with your submission: House constructed on lot? yes/no; house available for rent? yes/no; owner(s) job title (and business contact information, if desired); any other relevant information you would like to have included.


Lot #12: "Casa Kaleta"
Rob and Dana Kaleta (Claire, 16; Robert, 18)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
rkaleta@sbcglobal.net (Rob); dakaleta@sbcglobal.net (Dana)
(414) 961-1622 (US home); (506) 8353-5699 (CR cell)
house constructed; private rentals
Rob: university administrator
Dana: environmental educator

Don't forget: Make your plans to attend the HOA Annual Meeting on Sunday, February 22nd at 9:00 am at Club Arbol.

Do you plan to attend the HOA Annual Meeting? Comment in response to this post to let others know you plan to attend! Plans for a casual HOA member gathering are in the works for those in attendance. RSVP to help us anticipate numbers.

NOTE related to reading this blog: Follow new posts on this blog easily, without having to look up the URL every time you want to check for new posts. Simply click on the word "Follow" on the right hand side of the screen under the heading "HOA Members/Blog followers" and sign up. Your personal info can be kept hidden, but you will receive an e-mail notification with each new blog entry.

Want to comment on a post? Simply click on the word "Comment" after the related post and type in your personal comments. Once you post your comments, they will be moderated (to ensure that no spam enters the blog and that comments were posted by an actual HOA member), then posted.

Don't forget to send those "Tierra Pacifica HOA Directory" submissions today!

Pura Vida!

Dana Kaleta
Tierra Pacifica HOA Secretary

Saturday, January 10, 2009

About this blog...

Welcome to the Tierra Pacifica HOA Blog! This link is only being sent to active members of the Tierra Pacifica HOA (property owners who have actually closed on their lots and are HOA fee-paying members). Why another blog? I was searching for a tool that could be utilized by the HOA Board to convey info to HOA members, as well as a means for members to communicate with one another and to network. Members can choose to follow the blog anonymously or openly, so their personal info need not be shared.

The existent blog posted by Steve McKnight is tied to the general Tierra Pacifica website. The site is maintained by the developers and acts as a marketing tool, so numerous folks have access. It's a great resource and a great link to the Tierra Pacifica "big picture" and related info posted by Steve. This blog is an effort to provide a separate, private venue for us as HOA members to share info that is more pertinent to the day-to-day operations and concerns of current property and home owners. It also lets us make posts and comments to one another and allows you to comment on blogs that the HOA Board posts from time to time. I view it as a way to connect to let others know when you will be in Tierra Pacifica or in Playa Junquillal, to network and get others' opinions on local services and business needs (landscaping, property management, rental opportunities, local dining), and other uses as we see fit.

Please note: I am maintaining this blog spot and making posts voluntarily, as a way to help us build community within Tierra Pacifica. That being said, I want to respect everyone's privacy, so please let me know if you do not want me to use your name or last name. I commented on some coming's and going's below, just to let HOA members know that Tierra Pacifica has been bustling with activity these last couple of months. I also want to use this blog to represent the interests of the group as a whole, so feel free to e-mail with comments or things you would like to see discussed. This is a new site and can only be improved with your input. A blog is just that... I will write things I hope are of interest to others. No one should feel obligated to read the blogs. They are totally subjective in nature. As this site develops, I hope to add more objective HOA Board information and a feedback forum, but I'm still exploring software limitations and capacity. My kids are the technologically-abled in this household, so I have a learning curve ahead of me!

I invite you to e-mail me directly if you have info to share. I can post on your behalf until I figure out a way to moderate posts from within the site. My direct e-mail address is:


How to use this blog: The most recent blog entry appears at the top of the page. If you would like to read the blogs in order of their posting date, start from the bottom of the page. If you choose to become a "Follower" of this blog, you can opt to receive a notification when a new blog entry is posted. Oh, and by the way... If you know a better way to do all of this, please let me know. I'm a novice!

Note: The views, opinions, blog content, etc. on this site reflect my personal opinions and views and do not represent a position by the Tierra Pacifica HOA Board, its members, or individuals associated with Tierra Pacifica. I apologize, in advance, for any content that may be incorrectly reported and I will do my best to correct any misinformation as I am made aware of it.

Now, let's blog!

Pura Vida!

Dana Kaleta
Tierra Pacifica HOA Secretary
"Casa Kaleta"

Friday, January 9, 2009

Tierra Pacifica


Milwaukee's stark, snow-laden landscape is blinding after three and a half weeks in sunny Playa Junquillal! I'm already counting the days until my return to Tierra Pacifica (Twenty-six days to be exact, but who's really counting?!)...

December in the dry forest (bosque seco) of Guanacaste is a palette of waxy deep green foliage blended with the yellow-green of drying and falling deciduous leaves (approximately 40% of Tierra Pacifica's native trees). It is the transitional time for flora, as trees and plants lose their leaves, but begin to produce fruits and flowers during the dry season. This is a wonderful opportunity for viewing the "wild side" of Tierra Pacifica. The Howler Monkeys (Mono Congo) feed insatiably on the buds of emerging Corteza Amarilla (Yellow Cortez trees) and other flowering species. The life cycle of the trees guarantees a healthy monkey population in Tierra Pacifica, where babies and juveniles can be spotted in troupes year-round. After flowering trees bloom to provide food in the months of January and February, they subsequently develop seed pods and fruits in March and April. The pods are eaten by monkeys, birds and squirrels in the trees and dropped to the ground and are further dispersed by agouti, coatimundi, and other animals on the ground. The result? A new crop of seeds is dispersed and ready to root and sprout as the green season rains begin in late April and May, starting the cycle all over again. The trees green up, deciduous trees sprout new growth, and the monkey diet remains plentiful. For Tierra Pacifica property owners and residents this translates into beautiful scenery year-round!

Birds, too, are more easily spotted in trees now and just as the activity of migratory bird species begins to peak in February and March. Nests become more visible and the Mot-Mot and Trogan more vocal and easier to spot. Both birds have a distinct call. The Mot-Mot calls "mot, mot... mot, mot" and can be identified by a pendulum-type tail. The bird plucks its own tail feathers to achieve the pendulum effect, though scientists disagree as to the motive. A walk along Tierra Pacifica's hiking trails is rewarded with sightings of the Squirrel or Lesser Ground Cuckoo. The estuary in the corner of the property and surrounding wetland area are favorite stop-overs for Roseate Spoonbill, Black-bellied Whistling Ducks, Wood Stork, heron, egret and more. Last year a Jaibiru (the world's largest wading bird species at a height of approximately 6 feet tall!) frequented the organic farm in Tierra Pacifica. This is an important occurrence in that it reminds us of the need to protect Tierra Pacifica's green space and wildlife habitat. There are some exciting efforts underway related to wetland and mangrove protection and restoration in and around Tierra Pacifica and Playa Junquillal. Look for a related blog in the near future!

So, snowblind here in Milwaukee, I must be content to daydream about Junquillal and our time spent in December and early January.

Last year Doug hosted a party for Tierra Pacifica employees just before the Holidays. Joan, Dana, and Rob helped out with food and festivities last year, but this year the planning and party were officially in the hands of the HOA. Joan did an admirable job of planning and buying food on short notice. Linda and Ricardo Rush cooked up a storm, with Ricardo flipping burgers on the grill and Linda cooking chicken to perfection in the kitchen! The employees of the HOA number only 12 (gardeners, pool maintenance, cleaning, and guards) and the majority have worked at Tierra Pacifica since the beginning. Holding the fiesta on a Saturday afternoon hurt attendance somewhat, as many travel to the market in Santa Cruz on Saturdays. However, those who were in attendance with their guests had a great time and the Rush's cooking was a hit! We ate a lot of food, drank a lot of cervezas, and had a nice time recognizing the tireless efforts of the HOA employees in keeping Tierra Pacifica looking great and running safely and smoothly. We will profile our HOA employees in coming blogs. We are very fortunate, particularly on the security front, to have such consistency in our staff.

Tierra Pacifica saw several visits by homeowners at the end of 2008. The Morgan and Robertson families visited during November. The Robertson's home is nearing completion on the lot adjacent to Club Arbol. Linda and Ricardo Rush are in residence in Playa Junquillal for a few months. The Kaleta's spent the Holidays in residence at Casa Kaleta in Tierra Pacifica. Wes and Judith were able to enjoy vacation time in their now-completed home. Their open house on New Year's Day was well attended and they have definitely added the finishing touches that make a house (casa) a home (hogar)! Diane McLaughlin (HOA Vice-President) arrived just after the New Year with a visiting friend and the McLaughlin's sons and nephew. The guys were squeezing in a week of surfing before returning home. Diane's husband Joe arrives soon and they will remain in their home in Tierra Pacifica for a couple of months. Will and Lynette Raap's daughter and son arrived with friends to ring in the New Year, with Will and Lynette following last week. Lynette's mother arrived a few days later. They will be in residence for a few months.

Early January has been an active time for visiting Tierra Pacifica property owners. Thomas Windsor and friends were in town for a week. The Rogers-Windsor house is nearing completion and looks stunning! Thomas' wife, Ramona, has made frequent visits during the construction process and plans to return in February. Lot owners Liz and Randy were soaking up the sun poolside last week. It was great to see them again after meeting around this same time last year. A group of TP HOA members (Liz, Randy, Joan, Dana, Diane, and guests) enjoyed sunset and cocktails at Joan's, followed by dinner together at Las Tuquitas last week. It was fun to get together and we've really developed a nice network of property and homeowners. The more people we meet, the more we are convinced that Tierra Pacifica has really attracted a great group of folks!

Tierra Pacifica is a rapidly growing community. Many lots have sold in the past year. In fact, sales have remained active in recent months, despite the economy in US and foreign markets. Doug Stern continues to manage and oversee things as our Estate Manager and Jim Hamilton keeps the books balanced and collects the HOA fees that allow us to keep Tierra Pacifica running smoothly. Joan Inman (HOA President), Diane McLaughlin (HOA Vice-President) and I, Dana Kaleta (HOA Secretary), have been working to address some of the issues that accompany growth and change in any community, particularly one that is as new as Tierra Pacifica. Many issues that arise are new concerns and require decisions that lay the groundwork for future use of our common areas. Other issues impact our security, the solvency of our community, and our relationship with the surrounding community. We will highlight some of these concerns, developments and related decisions in coming blogs to keep you appraised of all that is happening in and around Tierra Pacifica.

I have to take a moment to recognize and praise our HOA President, Joan Inman. Joan is really the only Tierra Pacifica homeowner who is a current, full-time resident within the Tierra Pacifica community. She serves as the Manager of Club Arbol, handling seasonal and annual gym memberships, is the first to receive phone calls day or night when issues and concerns arise, and is generally our eyes and ears at Tierra Pacifica as long as the majority of us are seasonal visitors and part-time residents. Joan is often the first point of contact for potential Tierra Pacifica buyers, as she hosts numerous visitors in her bed and breakfast, "Hotelito Si, Si, Si" on the grounds of Tierra Pacifica. As such, she is basically "on-call" for Tierra Pacifica around the clock! Joan: Thank you for all you do to keep our community running smoothly! "Tireless hostess" among her many hats, who hasn't enjoyed Joan's hospitality and a sunset from her rooftop?

I'm off to shovel the 5 inches of snow we have received since my return from Costa Rica just two days ago! Keep an eye on our Tierra Pacifica blog for photos, more posts, and updates. Make your travel plans now to attend the Tierra Pacifica annual HOA meeting, scheduled for Sunday, February 22nd, 2009. The meeting will begin at 9:00 am at Club Arbol.

Pura Vida!

Dana Kaleta
HOA Secretary