Tuesday, March 13, 2018

House Tour Funds bring author to the district

Dr. Burton, Superintendent of Millburn Public Schools sent the following message below in her most recent letter to the school district.  The grant mentioned below paid to bring the speaker to our community, and a portion of it comprised of funds raised from the Short Hills House Tour that took place last May.

"I do want to remind you about next week’s speaker, Dr. Robert Brooks.  He will be presenting to parents on Wednesday night about the topic of resilience.  How do we learn, and teach our children, to bounce back in difficult times?  How can we help them become self-reliant, a skill needed for success in life?  You don’t want to miss this presentation – I have seen him speak at a conference and he is a highly engaging speaker.  He will share strategies that he has developed that you'll want to try out for yourself and with your family.  I want to thank Jennifer Sowa, our Director of Special Services, for using grant funds to invite him to Millburn.  He will be working with our staff on Wednesday afternoon, to give them professional development and instructional tools to support your children." 

To see the speaker, Dr. Robert Brooks, author of "Raising Resilient Children" please join us at MHS Auditorium at 7pm on March 14, 2018.

Robert Brooks, Ph.D. Child Psychologist and renowned author of 16 books Dr.Brooks has lectured nationally and internationally to parents on topics pertaining to motivation, resilience, and family relationships. He is on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and has served as the Director of the Department of Psychology at McLean Hospital in Boston.

Thank you so much for supporting the house tour to help provide these type of programs.

The next tour will be in May 5, 2018. To get tickets and learn more, please go to:  

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Emails of Appreciation for the House Tour


email from Christine Burton, Superintendent of Millburn Township Public Schools:

From: Christine Burton <christine.burton@millburn.org>
Date: May 9, 2017 at 7:03:18 PM EDT
To: Melanie Rosenbaum <Melanie@realshorthills.com>Cc: Jennifer Sowa <jennifer.sowa@millburn.org>, Nancy Dries <nancy.dries@millburn.org>

Thank you for all your hard work to bring the event to fruition. It is a great deal of work to bring everything together for a very
important fundraising effort!
All the best,
P.S. I will look to get you information for the summer admin. meeting needs as we finalize our planning.

The Superintendent, well the Superintendent came to the Preview Party!  So kind because she had limited time needing to get to a School Board Meeting in the town in which she lives.  She's the President of that School Board!  I'm serious!  So she showed up early to the party, I was running around setting up last minute details, it was funny!   I offered her a drink (with no bar tender there yet), I offered her some food (with the food not yet served), and I offered to take her coat (but she was still holding it when someone went to snap a photo).  I'm not even sure if she toured around the house!  lol  Regardless, it was so nice of her to attend and appreciated her support for the cause.


email from Jennifer Sowa, Director of Special Services with Millburn Township Public Schools:

On May 9, 2017, at 12:21 PM, Jennifer Sowa wrote:

It was a wonderful event and I enjoyed myself. Thank you for all you do to support the district and our
students with ASD!

Jennifer is the new Director of Special Services.  I seriously believe we are in good hands, and the district is fortunate to have her in this role.  I love how interested she was in the house tour, and of course she was thrilled to learn the funds raised from it were for her to decide on additional parental and professional development programs.   


email from Victoria Carter from Weichert:

On May 6, 2017, at 6:30 PM, Victoria Carter <victoria@victoriacarter.com> wrote:

Thank you for your hard work and coordinating such a fantastic and meaningful event. It was our pleasure to participate and we are
glad that it was as successful as it was!

Victoria F. Carter
Weichert Realtors
505 Millburn Avenue
Short Hills, N.J. 07078
973.220.3050 mobile

Seriously a gracious realtor!  With one phone call, a brief description of the philanthropic event, Victoria's response was lovely, warm and welcoming.   She happily confirmed her participation, and graciously made a generous donation.   Thanks Victoria!   


email from Tom Wragg of Wells Fargo:

On May 8, 2017, at 4:25 PM, Tom.Wragg@wellsfargo.com wrote:

Good Afternoon, Melanie –
I’d like to thank you for getting in touch with me so I could participate in the house tour this
weekend – it was really fun!...it looked like the people who went on the tour had a really nice
time and that they all saw some incredible houses!
I’d love to do this again next year if you are planning to do this again –


Tom Wragg
Mortgage Consultant
NMLSR ID 785390
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage | 190 River Rd | Summit, NJ 07901
MAC M6153-031

Tel (908) 608-2213 | Cell (917) 796-7621 | Fax (866) 731-9203

I have not even met Tom yet!  Seriously, surrounded by rock star professionals.


Architectural and Real Estate House Tour in Short Hills

Dr. Christine Burton, Superintendent; Melanie Rosenbaum, Tour Organizer
and Nancy Dries, Communications Coordinator
The 5th Annual Architectural and Real Estate House Tour Preview Party in Short Hills, benefiting Millburn Township Public Schools and promoting Autism Awareness took place the weekend of May 6th with many in attendance at 12 Ferndale Road in Short Hills. The location of this year's preview party was a modern new construction 10,000 sq ft house that was on the actual tour on Saturday, May 6th from 1-4pm. This particular home has been described as a Simonian Rosenbaum Architects "Falling Water moment" (Frank Lloyd Wrights most famous house).

Melanie Rosenbaum, KW & Stephanie Mallios, CB

Elan Bitan, KW
Jill Bray, PPSI

The day of the tour, six homes were hosted by the following listing agents: Arlene Gonnella and Victoria Carter of Weichert, Stephanie Mallios of Caldwell Banker, Jill Bray of Sotheby's, Melanie Rosenbaum and Elan Bitan of Keller Williams. The tour consisted of 3 new construction homes and 3 historic Hartshorn homes. Tour participants received treats, giveaways, and even a light lunch from Tom Wragg of Wells Fargo and Jon Lamkin of Guaranteed Rate.
Victoria Carter, Weichert
Arlene Gonnella, Weichert with 
hosting homeowner, Chai Gray 

Bruce Engler
The Ferndale house was a fantastic place to throw the Preview Party, and so perfect to create a chance to raise some money for Millburn Township Public Schools. The new Director of Special Services, Jennifer Sowa will be deciding how best to utilize the funds raised for the District. The mutual objective is to further support educators and parents alike; the goal is to provide parental and professional development programs to ANYONE in the district who wishes to participate.  

Director of Millburn Township Special Services, Jennifer Sowa
Several Important District Administrators attended the Preview Party to support the event.  Key figures such as, our very own Superintendent, Christine Burton; Director of Special Services, Jennifer Sowa; Communication Director, Nancy Dries;  Secondary Special Services Supervisor, Brent McGuinness; School Psychologist, Dr. Christopher Mesopotanese; Behaviorist, Catherine Benedetto; LDTC, Leslie Blitz (my son's case manager) just to name a few.  It's a true testament  to the supreme community within our schools, with individuals whom provide an outstanding commitment to excellence for our children.

Exceptional District Special Services Professionals
Last year, a portion of the fundraising efforts went to Autism NJ, who provided four full grants to attend their official state two day conference.  Some of the district professionals who attended include the school psychologist, a district behaviorist, and a self-contained classroom teacher. In the past, many of our school's professionals were only able to attend the conference for one day, however these same employees wrote me a note indicating that they came back refreshed and full of ideas for all of the students (not just the special education students). 

To date the fundraiser has raised more than $30K for the cause spreading Autism Awareness throughout our community educating individuals. The  disorder affects 1 in 41 children in New Jersey.  Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder that affects a person’s social communication and interaction. Individuals with ASD also have restricted and repetitive behavior, interests, and activities. These challenges can significantly impact their quality of life. Individuals with ASD may be more likely to have seizure, gastrointestinal, sleep, and anxiety disorders as well.

Autism New Jersey is the largest statewide network of parents and professionals dedicated to improving lives of individuals with ASD. This nonprofit organization is committed to providing information, education, awareness, and public policy work to NJ’s autism community.
Brynn Alberici, Special Events & Community Relations Manager with Autism NJ
From the bottom of my heart, I'm touched and grateful, by the community involvement and support with this philanthropic effort.

For more information on the Architectural and Real Estate House Tour and how to participate, please see the link. 

For more information on the Department of Special Services of Millburn Township Public Schools, please see the link. 

For more information on Autism NJ, please see the link. 

Monday, November 28, 2016

My heart is warmed, and my efforts are worth while! Thank you!

My heart is warmed, and my efforts are worth while!  Thank you!  Thank you!  Thank you!

The house tour in Short Hills that you supported sent 4 Millburn Township district professionals to the state's official autism conference, put on by Autism NJ.  The conference is usually in October and provides a wealth of information directed at individuals providing specials services, including parents, educators, healthcare professionals, etc.  What I love about Autism NJ and their main conference, is that the valuable information provided is not ONLY focused on Autism, but it relates to many other types of special needs.  I found the conference to provide very useful information that I access everyday, for all of my children.  The conference spans over two days, and one night. The house tour paid entirely for the conference on both days and the one night hotel stay.  

Four very deserving and important district professions, just sent me this beautiful card:

My heart is warmed, and my efforts are worth while!  Thank you!  Thank you!  Thank you!  

Thank you so much to all that supported this effort and made this happen.  For certain I want to acknowledge, Brynn Alberici, Events Coordinator with Autism, NJ for facilitating, and all that she does with Autism NJ;  Jennifer Sowa, Millburn's new Director of Special Services, for following through and making sure that this happened for our district;  Peter Uzzolino with Acres Title, for his continuous support & pep talks, and providing a generous donation;  Guaranteed Rate for showing up with Sushi;  and my loving family, just because.  The list and the details really goes on... Ha!   All the info is added to the tour map.  LMK if you would like to see one.   

For more info on the Autism NJ Conference.

For more info about the Short Hills House Tour.  Next one slated for May 2017.

PS.  The house tour also paid for two wonderful seminars that the new Director of Special Services, Jennifer Sowa has chosen for our community coming in December and March.  If you would like more information on these seminars, just lmk.

Sales Associate & Blogger

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The 4th Annual Short Hills House Tour was a huge success!

The 4th Annual Short Hills House Tour Benefiting Autism NJ and Millburn Special Services was another huge success.  The tour showcases architecture and real estate in Millburn Township, and has huge community involvement.  This year the tour provided 4 full paid scholarships for district members to attend the Autism NJ official state conference, along with monies for professional development for Millburn Specials Services to add to their budget.  The next tour will be in May 2017.  For more information go to http://www.realshorthills.com/house-tour-benefiting-millburn-special-services/.  

Hartshorn’s Principal, Kenneth Frattini, Tour Organizer, Melanie Rosenbaum, and School Board Member, Emily Jaffe, came out to support the community event at the Tour’s Preview Party.

The High School group the Eyeronics performed at the Tour’s Preview Party.

Local Designers staged one of the homes for the event.  This room was designed by Greg Smith of Contemporary Art & Edition on Essex Street, not photographed.  From left to right, designers and stagers, Michelina K., Uma Stewart, Laura Credico, & Maura Buckley.  

Schultz Furrier filled the master closet with beautiful furs and Bedazzeled added amazing jewels.

Many came out for the Architectural & Real Estate House Tour and made it a family affair, seeing beautiful homes like this one at 54 Western Drive, Maggee Miggin’s listing along with Heidi Davis.  

The tour participants even included a couples playdate shown in 12 Ferndale Rd, listed by Melanie Rosenbaum (tour organizer).

Monday, May 23, 2016

Short Hills House Tour

The 4th Annual Short Hills House Tour

It was a wonderful day spent seeing great local architecture, Short Hills real estate, and exceptional designers talents via this Architectural and Real Estate Short Hills House Tour. Thank you to everyone who supported this hugely successful event, and supported spreading Autism Awareness. We raised almost $9K! The proceeds are going to Autism NJ and Millburn Special Services. Autism NJ will be providing materials and support direct to Millburn Township Public Schools to help educate and spread autism awareness. Millburn Special Services will be utilizing the monies raised for further professional development.

Thank you so much! For additional information please go to www.RealShortHills.com or contact the tour Organizer, Melanie Rosenbaum at 973-768-1818 or Melanie@RealShortHills.com.