Ardent for Life Spring 2019

Page 1


love Story





food & flavor 24. GRILLED CHEESE Carole Morris 28. HAS SPRING FINALLY SPRUNG? Cindy Della Monica

...46 6. - Spring 2019

contents health 50. PLAY BALL Anna Osborn 54. HEALTH AND WELLNESS CENTER Kaiser Permanente 56. TESTOSTERONE Rejuvenation Wellness

...56 education 58. WHAT I’VE LEARNED CT Morris

design 70. SOUTHWEST STYLE Zina Sheya Designs

real estate 76. MODEL HOMES Justin Pinnell


40. BOOK REVIEWS Sacramento Public Library 78. DATEBOOK

8. - Spring 2019


Community Cornerq a &

Nan Mahon

Writer Celebrating Jane Austen, page 36. What book is on your nightstand?

On the side table where I place my books in progress there is the one, I just finished, the one I am reading, and the one waiting. More often than not, they are mystery novels by authors whose writing I admire. When I choose a book, I look for an author that I know will hold my interest and not waste my time. I just closed the last page on New Iberia Blues by my favorite author, James Lee Burke. Few writers come close to Burke. I am always sad when the reading experience is over. His books are character-driven, filled in depth with the human experience, and poetic in style. The protagonist, Dave Robicheaux, (in Burke’s detective series) is set in a small town outside of New Orleans, and a fighter for justice in a very moral sense. He weaves into his story the commercial encroachment and destruction of the Old South. A New York Times best-selling author, Burke is named America’s Best Novelist by The Denver Post and praised by writers such as Michael Connelly and Stephen King. He has won two Edgar Awards and a Guggenheim Fellowship for creative fiction. 10. - Spring 2019

Community Cornerq a &

Denise Henderson

Employment Placement Specialist, Elk Grove Unified School District Story on page 60. Typical work week: I am on the go bouncing between all the

EGUSD high schools (we currently have nine comprehensive and three alternative education high schools) providing employment readiness skills seminars. I also spend a lot of time traveling throughout the Elk Grove Region developing and maintaining business partnerships. A large part of my job is facilitating work experience opportunities between the students and the businesses. I share that task with our program Job Developer, Sherry Clifford. Notable Accomplishments: I may have peaked in first grade when

I received the “Good Citizenship” award for the entire elementary! Since then, I’m proud of the time I’ve spent working and volunteering with kids at every grade level. I love the opportunity to form relationships with kids; they need to know that adults (other than their parents) care about them. What book is on your nightstand? I’m an avid reader so there is a

stack! The two I would like to read soon are Daring Greatly by Brene Brown and Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

I can’t live without these apps on my phone: Audible and

Pinterest: I love having books available on the Audible app. I use it while I’m driving and walking the dog with my husband. I love to explore Pinterest for everything from recipes, craft ideas, books, inspirational quotes and quilt ideas. What is the most important invention man has made? The

written word: Where do I begin? The written word plays such an important part in how we communicate including as a means of selfexpression, entertainment, recording history, sharing great ideas, etc.   13

Contributor’s Corner Justin Azevedo

Justin has been a Youth Services Librarian for Sacramento Public Library since 2010, and is currently the Youth Materials Selector for the system.

Jessica Bowers

Lifestyle Photographer Servicing Sacramento & Elk Grove. Home-school mom of 3 busy boys. Life is too sweet to not capture all the precious moments.

Sindy Cesarini

Owner of Bella Mena Photography, Sindy has been serving the community and greater Bay Area for the past ten years. Specializing in outdoor portraits. Her greatest life accomplishment has been raising her children, Melina and Anthony.

Brooke Frick

Brooke lives with her husband and five children on a “ranch”. Her dreams are big, her hands are full and her laundry room is a mess.

Denise Henderson

Denise is a creative thinker who loves building relationships! She has great ones with her husband and her two sons!

Dr. Dayle A. Imperato

A Board Certified physician, she has served the Sacramento community for the past 20 years. Owner of Rejuvenation Wellness & Aesthetic Medicine in Old Town, Elk Grove.

Nan Mahon

Is an author and journalist. She is a member City of Elk Grove Committee for the Arts and received the Elk Grove 2011 Mayor’s Award for volunteerism in the Arts.

Cindy Della Monica

Cheesemonger and Owner of Cheese Central in Lodi, Ca.

Carole Morris

Instructional Specialist, Author and Adjunct Professor. She is married to an outstanding, brilliant man and the mother of two grown awe-inspiring children, and grammie to three flawless grandchildren.

Kristyn Nelson

Public Affairs Manager of the City of Elk Grove, CA.

Anna Osborn

Anna lives in Elk Grove with her husband and school aged twins. She owns Life Unscripted Counseling in Midtown Sacramento.

Elizabeth Pinkerton

Teacher and Administrator for 40 years, she is now a historian and author.

Justin Pinnell

Justin is not just another pretty face in Real Estate. He enjoys long walks on the beach and high mountain sunsets.

Susie Franklin Roeser

Owner & full time employee of Gifts From The Heart Of Elk Grove. Daughter, Sister, Wife, Mom x2, Carpool Minivan driver, 4-H Leader and lover of all things creative.

Zina Sheya

Has been in Interior design for 18 years. Award winning and featured in multiple publications. She is the owner of Zina Sheya Designs.

Dianna Singh

Owner of Elk Grove Vitamins for the past four years.

Brendle Wells

Is a librarian and lifelong reader who has a passion for sharing books with pretty much anyone she meets. She currently works as the Adult Materials Selector for the Sacramento Public Library and asks, “What have you read lately?”

Charlie Zamora

Elk Grove Entrepreneur and respected businessman. He has owned and operated businesses in Elk Grove since 2010. His greatest accomplishments are being married to his beautiful wife Micha and being the father to his amazing son Myles.

Liz Zimbelman Photography

Owner and full-time photo ninja. Wife, Mom x2, Professional caffeine drinker, and she's never met a cat she didn't like.

14. - Spring 2019

For full bios of our contributors, please visit

On the Cover COVER MODELS:

From left to right: Micha Zamora, Carlee Hull, and Breanne Zamora. Read their story on page 18.


Sindy Cesarini Bella Mena Photography

creative director

executive editor

business manager

Sara Pinnell

Carole Morris

art & production

Justin Pinnell


View Ardent for Life online at WWW.ARDENTFORLIFE.NET

Copyright Š 2019 Mrs. and Mr. Publishing Published by Mrs. and Mr. Publishing six times a year Want to know about great events, open houses, and more? Like us on Facebook at Ardent For Life is distributed in Elk Grove, Sacramento, Lodi, and every point in between. Have a great story idea, or know someone that we should feature? Email us with your comments & suggestions at Interested in increasing your business and partnering with Ardent For Life? Check out The information in this publication is for informational purposes only. Mrs. and Mr. Publishing Inc. (DBA Ardent for Life) assumes no liability or responsibility for any inaccurate or incomplete information, nor for any actions taken in reliance thereon. The information contained about each individual, event or organization is not necessarily the views of the magazine.

ARDENT f o r

l i f e

Checking In

Spring is here! It makes me feel like singing “Here Comes the Sun” with Richie Havens. This is a season that is brimming with promise. It’s not too hot or too cold; and the scenery is filled with green plants. I feel like dancing around the new leaves and buds that are popping out on the tree branches. It’s impossible to keep the smile off my face, because there isn’t anything that is equivalent to the fragrant blooms on the flowers and the trees. Then we have the birds, they are all back busily building their nests and singing their melodious songs. Even the mud—that the swallows are smearing on the outside of my house, can’t dim my joy in seeing them…I’ve actually been looking for their return. Nothing like the present moment in time to start working outside in our gardens. We can feel energetic and healthy as we work outside, breathing in the fragrant air. Then, there is nothing better than lounging on a porch, or under a favorite tree, and taking a well-deserved break. Even better, put your feet up and enjoy this latest issue of Ardent for Life magazine. executive editor

Carole Morris What did we learn after reading this issue? We have an article about Lauren Willig who is a New York Times bestselling historical novelist. Lauren has been writing ever since she got her hands on her first romance novel at the age of six. Read about all the books that she has authored, then choose one for your spring read…you won’t be disappointed. There are some amazing events coming up in the upcoming months—There is a list of these events, in this magazine, and they are guaranteed to keep you and your family entertained this spring. We have an interesting article about members of The Jane Austen Society who call themselves “Janeites”. They celebrate the life, the times, and the works of the renowned English writer. The movement has grown in the Sacramento area due to the leadership of Lynn Ossolinski. Court rooms may not seem like a fitting place for dreams to come true but read the article about how Love Built a Family. It is a heartwarming article about Niki and Taylor and their three energetic sons. As always, we have some wonderful recipes in this issue of our magazine that you will love!


Mothering your way By Charlie Zamora Photos by Sindy Cesarini Bella Mena Photography

There is not just one way to accomplish being a great mom;

even if the internet, magazines or TV shows might tell you otherwise. When people are unmoving in their ideas of what a mom should be, it is hard for them to see outside of that. I feel it is safe to say that most moms do what's right for them and their children. I have been able to see my wife, my sister in law, and one of our close family friends each take on different (and similar) roles as mothers. This is the main reason that I wanted to write this article. All three of them are great friends and respect each other. They all parent a little different, but they are great moms. I know this will help moms everywhere have a better appreciation for each other. 18. - Spring 2019




Micha Zamora (full-time working mom)

How old are you? 32 How long have you been married? Charlie and I will be married a total of eight years in June.

How old is your child?

My son Myles is 2 years old.

What is something you want everyone to know about being a full-time working mom?

I’d say (just like a stay at home mom would say), you must have a calling for it. Although many don’t think it’s the “right” thing to do, it is right for many families. I educated myself and graduated from college 10 years ago and knew I wanted to be in the work force long ago. My career is something I am extremely passionate about. I get to help people all day long and that’s something I am not willing to let go of. I also want to provide my son with many things and opportunities that I did not have growing up. My husband and I are business partners, so we have found a perfect balance to make sure we each get plenty of time with our son.

What is your advice for a full-time working mom?

It is normal to feel sad or guilty some days! Some days I drop my son off at his Montessori school and leave the parking lot already missing him. This is just part of being a mom. A little mom guilt, however, as soon as I get to work… I am fulfilled because I’m able to reach people and help them become healthier for themselves and their families! Most importantly, I’d say make sure you are passionate about your job, and make sure that it’s worth it. You have to be happy! Happiness = Health.

What is the most important thing you want your child to learn through your actions?

I want my son to see how strong and independent his mom is. I want him to learn my work ethic, and I will share my journey with him. I also want him to make the connection that hard work equals success; and he too can be successful as long as he always gives his best effort. I am excited for him to watch my husband and I work together—and to continue to grow our businesses in the community that he is being raised in.   19

featured}MOM Q&A


Breanne Zamora (part-time working mom) How old are you? 29

How long have you been married?

Christian and I have been married for six years.

How old are your children? Josiah - 5 (6 in April) Jonah- 4

What is something you want everyone to know about being a part-time working mom?

Everyone’s situation is different. But for me, there is some guilt. I work/study when Christian gets home from work, because I want to stay home with my kids during the day. So that means I miss out on some evening family time that I value so much. This just means that when I am with my boys in the morning or during the day, I try to give them each the attention and love that they need.

What is your advice for a Part Time Working Mom?

Prep lunches (ha-ha) but seriously… most days I know I don’t eat enough food. But most importantly, make sure to squeeze in some time for yourself daily. For me, that means waking up a little earlier than the kids to get a moment to myself (to read my Bible and pray), before the day begins. I also keep a consistent workout routine throughout the week. Both things keep me sane. Lastly, coffee! Coffee helps with late nights in the office.

What is the most important thing you want your kids to learn through your actions?

First and foremost, I want my kids to know they are loved. I also want them to choose to love and treat everyone like they want to be treated. I think it’s important for my kids to understand that not everything comes easy, but hard work can get you where you want to be.

20. - Spring 2019

featured}MOM Q&A


Carlee Hull (stay at home mom)

How old are you? 27 How long have you been married?

My husband Joel and I have been married for four and a half years.

How old are your children?

My son, Walker, is 2 1/2 and my daughter, Andee, is 1.

What is something you want everyone to know about being a stay at home mom?

Being a stay at home mom is the best, and hardest thing I've ever done. I know that sounds cliché, but that's the truth. For me, I have the best job in the world. I get to see my babies all day, every day. It's exhausting, but as soon as I put them to bed, I miss them. They are addicting!

What is your advice for a Stay at Home Mom?

I don't know if I can offer advice, because there is no handbook for being a “stay at home mom” or being a mom in general. But I can offer encouragement. The best advice I've gotten is “Take a deep breath, days are long, but years are short.” This is so true! And moms out there, let me assure you that you’re doing a great job!

What is the most important thing you want your kids to learn through your actions?

I'm a Christian woman, and I want my kids to know that they are loved by Christ. And through my actions, I hope I'm showing my kiddos how to love and to be kind to others. And, I'm secretly hoping they get my love for music and will forever dance with me.   23

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches By Carole Morris

food} The history of the authentic grilled cheese sandwich is vague, however, the history of “the sandwich” is a little easier to nail down. The sandwich was named after the English aristocrat, John Montague (4th Earl of Sandwich) in the 18th-century. Montague enjoyed this type of food because the sandwich allowed him to eat at his desk while working. I totally get it…this man was brilliant. The sandwich finally came to the United States, in 1840. Sadly, nothing is known about the grilled cheese sandwich between ancient times and the 1920s. The first grilled cheese sandwich was cooked open faced with cheddar cheese, starting in the 1920’s. Now, we’ve evolved to this. Sexy and hot, grilled cheese will never be the same!

Apple Cheddar Bacon Grilled Cheese (tastes warm and cozy—like home) 4 slices bacon 2 slices (favorite) bread 1/2 apple (remove core) sliced thin 4 slices sharp cheddar cheese Soft butter

Grilled Cheese & Egg for Brunch


Ingredients (makes two sandwiches)

1. Cook the bacon to desired crispness.

2. Pre-heat non-stick flat pan over medium high heat.

3. Butter one slice of bread (on one side) then place in pan. Layer two slices of the cheddar cheese onto bread, next sliced apple and then the bacon. Top with the other two slices of cheddar, then cover it all with the second slice of bread. 4. Brown the sandwich on the first side for approximately two minutes. Press down, with spatula, as the sandwich cooks so that it sticks together. 5. Turn sandwich over to brown on the other side for about two minutes. Cut in half and inhale!

(tastes like an indulgent weekend) 1/2 stick softened butter 4 eggs (beaten together in bowl) 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives 1/2 cup mushrooms 4 slices of favorite bread 8 slices of mozzarella cheese 8 slices of sharp cheddar cheese


1. In a pan (over medium heat) melt 1 tbsp butter, then add beaten eggs. Stir until eggs are fully cooked, then add mushrooms and chives.

2. Butter each slice of bread…on one side. 3. In a flat skillet (over medium heat) place 2 slices of the bread, buttered side down.

4. Place 4 slices of mozzarella cheese on each slice of bread. 5. Put about ¼ cup of scrambled egg mixture on mozzarella cheese.

6. Place 4 slices of cheddar cheese on top of scrambled egg mixture. 7. Put remaining slice of bread on top of cheese.

8. Cover skillet and cook about two minutes (or until bottom bread is golden brown). 9. Turn-over and cook the second side until it is golden brown.   25


Grilled Cheese with Caramelized Onion (tastes like a heavenly bowl of French onion soup)

Ingredients for caramelized onions 5 tbsp butter 3 medium yellow onions, sliced in about 1/4 inch slices 1 1/4 tsp salt 2 1/4 tsp granulated sugar 1/4 teaspoon thyme 1/4 cup beef stock

Instructions for caramelized onions

1. Melt butter over medium heat in a skillet. 2. Stir in sliced onions.

3. Season with salt and sugar. Cover pan and cook over low heat for approximately one hour. Stir occasionally until onions are dark brown and caramelized. 4. Stir in thyme and broth and cook for about 2 minutes… Remove from heat.

Ingredients for grilled cheese

Stick of soft butter 8 slices French bread 2 cups grated Gruyere cheese

Instructions for Grilled Cheese with Caramelized Onions 1. Butter each slice of bread…on one side.

2. In a flat skillet (over medium heat) place 4 slices of the bread, buttered side down.

3. Put about ¼ cup of cheese on top of each slice of bread. Then spoon desired amount of onion mixture on top of the cheese. Place remaining slices of bread on top of cheese. 4. Cover skillet and cook about two minutes (or until bottom bread is golden brown).

5. Turn-over and cook the second side until it is golden brown. Enjoy (try not to lick your fingers).

26. - Spring 2019   27


Has Spring Finally Sprung? By Cindy Della Monica, Cheesemonger and Owner, Cheese Central

28. - Spring 2019


This year, the groundhog was playing a joke on us…early spring, indeed! As a responsible citizen, I am still conserving water for household use, though we all know that we are WELL over rainfall and snow normal for drought purposes. As a sun-worshipper, I am past due for my vitamin D infusion! However, my spirits have been lifted as the forsythia and forget-me-nots are blooming in the yard, making bright patches in the gloom. Lodi is in its first week of sunshine and warmth (yes, 65*+ is warmth in my book!). Time to break out the spring, Easter and Mother’s Day ideas and recipes! Years ago, I found a Honey and Forsythia Syrup that is a good topping for ricotta pancakes or a stir-in for tea. I make a nutmeg muffin, too, that gets a “poke-cake” treatment with the syrup as is, or infused with fresh lavender. Now… is the moment for harvest. Nothing says Easter brunch quite like the ubiquitous sliced ham, decorated eggs and deviled egg plate, yummy sweet rolls, muffins and breads, crispy fresh garden greens and a luscious cheese tray. I can’t wait to put out the bright tangy flavors of goats milk cheeses, especially with a spring mix salad from my garden. The arugula isn’t too peppery yet (as the days haven’t gotten hot), the baby romaine and oak leaf lettuces are tender and sweet, and the pea tendrils can be harvested, too. My favorite goat cheese for a salad plate is Bermuda Triangle, by Cypress Grove Creamery in Arcata, California. It is the exact same cheese as Humboldt Fog, but molded into a different form. Delightful! Alternatively, creamy-firm chevre logs can be blended with fresh chopped herbs, rolled and chilled. Decorated with edible flower petals and cut into discs for the salad plate is a smashing way to herald the arrival of Benjamin Bunny! Every year, the garden nasturtium plants have overwintered and flowered regardless of how frosty it might have been in the valley, and many of my landscape plants have edible flowers on them. I don’t use pesticides, so I KNOW that the flower petals are clean and edible, and the first rule of thumb is that if it is on the plate, it must be edible! The vibrant petals of geraniums, roses, violets and Johnny-Jump-Ups, carnation and Sweet William, along with the blossoms of chives, or mint, is just spectacular on the salad (or

just scattered over your cheese platter). The flower petals have flavors of peppery-brightness in sunset-colored nasturtiums, sweet-spiciness of cloves in cornflowers, or the cucumber-like taste of pretty star-shaped blue borage blossoms. Your foodie-forward friends will be wowed! Local asparagus is ready now. Steam or blanch it to tender crispness. Chill and arrange on a pretty tray, crumble chevre over its middle section like a belt, and dress lightly with a lemony vinaigrette. Garnished with a scattering of those flower petals will delight the eye AND the palette. Speaking of vinaigrette, I teach my culinary students the basic French vinaigrette recipe. Just by changing the flavor of vinegar and/or the flavor of mustard, the dressing will be completely different, mathematically making probably 20 different dressing combinations! I even advise using citrus juices instead of vinegar as the “acid” component to the dressing. Recently, I came upon dressing recipes that use either the pureed poached rhubarb flesh, or the poached rhubarb juice, as part of the acid in the dressing. When using the poached flesh, puree it with a bit of honey, rice wine vinegar and vegetable oil for a creamy vinaigrette. Aren’t you ready for strawberries? Strawberry jam, shortcake, muffins, cheesecake, even just a bowlful with yogurt or crème fraiche! The recipe on the next page is for a mini pastry cup with a cheesecake-y filling and fresh strawberry garnish, optionally garnished with candied blossoms such as Johnny-Jump-Ups, violets or rose petals. That gift would make ANY momversion feel special!

How about letting blossoms and cheese find their way into a spring dessert to serve after your ham, take to a friend, or church social, or Mother’s Day? I just love mini desserts—well, mini anything!

One of the best gifts I have taught in my children’s cooking classes is a gift for Mom or Grandma… a teacup and saucer repurposed to be a mini tea stand for an edible gift presentation! Find a pretty pair at the thrift shop. Warm up the hot glue gun. Turn the teacup upside down, run a bead of hot glue around the bottom rim of the base of the teacup, and set the right-side up saucer centered on the cup base. Let the glue harden for a few minutes. The mini-stand is now ready for the saucer to be filled with your special treats. So pretty!

As always, our staff at CHEESE CENTRAL is ready to help you with samples of our 100+ cheeses at the counter. Visit us at 11 N School St, Lodi, CA 95240 or visit our website at   29


FRESH STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE CUPS A tangy creamy filling enhances the freshness of the season’s favorite crop.

Bake at 350° for about 10 minutes, or till lightly browned on the edges. Use the melon baller to press the dough down again in the middle, forming a cup. Cool completely.


3/4 C cream cheese, softened


1/3 C room-temperature butter

3/4 C powdered sugar

1/2 C sugar

1/2 t vanilla

1 egg

2 T lemon juice

1/2 t vanilla

1/4 C whipping cream, beaten until stiff peaks form

1 1/4 C flour 1/2 t baking powder 1/4 t salt Grated zest of one lemon Cream together butter and sugar in medium bowl. Add egg and vanilla, and blend well. In a small bowl, combine dry ingredients and lemon zest. Blend into butter mixture without overmixing. Roll dough into 1″ balls, and place in PAM sprayed mini muffin tin. With your thumb, or the rounded end of a melon baller, make a good indentation in each cup.

30. - Spring 2019

Strawberry halves, with a bit of green cap attached Beat cream cheese just until smooth. Beat in powdered sugar, vanilla and lemon juice just until combined. Add whipped cream, and blend well. Put filling into a piping bag, or a large ziplock bag and cut a small bit of corner off with a scissors. Refrigerate until ready to serve. When ready to serve, pipe filling to the cooled pastry cups. Top with a berry half, and garnish with fresh edible blossoms. Serve immediately or chill.

To crystallize blossoms or rose petals:

1 egg white (using powdered egg whites helps avoid possible salmonella) superfine sugar clean, dry whole blossoms, or rose petals

Beat egg white until frothy. Using fresh picked flowers, paint each flower individually with beaten egg white using a craft paintbrush. When thoroughly coated, sprinkle with fine sugar and place on a wire rack to dry. Flowers are completely dry when stiff and brittle to the touch. Store the dried, candied flowers in airtight container until ready to use, up to three months.


Novelist Historical


Lauren Willig Written by Carole Morris

What is there not to love about a New York Times bestselling historical novelist who writes about lost love, lies, and jealousy? Really, there isn’t a better combination for a novel. Don’t we just love reading about love? Then, add the fact that her most recent novel, The Summer Country, takes place in colonial Barbados—a place that is distinctively charming with its endless beaches, coconut palms, fig trees, cane fields, and flowers. This book is a perfect read for spring! The author, Lauren Willig, has been writing ever since she got her hands on her first romance novel at the age of six. Three years later, she sent her first novel off to a publishing house—all three hundred hand-written pages. They sent it back. Undaunted, Lauren has continued to generate large piles of paper and walk in front of taxis while thinking about plot ideas. She was definitely a precocious child… what a delight she must have been to her teachers! I’m always urging the third graders that I teach, “Write, just six paragraphs…you can do it.” To have a student write three hundred hand-written pages—the thought takes my breath away. My heart would sing, and my feet wouldn’t touch the ground. This early writing was truly the foundation of an amazing author! After thirteen years at an all-girls school, (explains the romance novels, doesn’t it?) Lauren set off for Yale and co-education, where she read lots of Shakespeare, wrote sonnet sequences when she was supposed to be doing her science requirement, and lived in a Gothic fortress complete with leaded windows and gargoyles. Subsequently (when she completed college) she decided she really hadn’t had enough school

32. - Spring 2019

yet, and headed off to that crimson place in Cambridge, Massachusetts for a degree in English history. Like the modern heroine in her Pink Carnation series, she spent a year doing dissertation research in London, tramping back and forth between the British Library and the Public Records Office, reading lots of British chick lit, and eating far too many Sainsbury’s frozen dinners.

By a strange quirk of fate, Lauren signed her first book contract during her first month of law school. She finished writing “Pink Carnation” during her 1st year, scribbled “Black Tulip” her 2nd year, and struggled through “Emerald Ring” as a weary and jaded 3rd year student. After three years of taking useful and practical classes like “Law in Ancient Athens” and “The Globalization of the Modern Legal Consciousness”, Lauren received her J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School. For a year and a half, she practiced as a litigation associate at a large New York law firm. But having attained the lofty heights of second year associate, she decided that book deadlines and doc review didn’t mix and departed the law for a new adventure as a full-time writer.

With all that extra time on her hands, Lauren branched out into a few new projects, including teaching a class at Yale called “Reading the Regency Romance”, an exploration of the rise and development of the Regency romance sub-genre from Austen, Heyer, and McNaught up through all the more bizarre modern permutations, including “wallpaper” historical, Regency vampires, and Austen-inspired chick lit.

Lauren Willig is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Pink Carnation series and several stand-alone works of historical fiction, including The Ashford Affair, That Summer, The Other Daughter, The English Wife, and the collaborative novels, The Forgotten Room and The Glass Ocean. Her books have been translated into over a dozen languages, awarded the RITA, Booksellers Best and Golden Leaf awards, and chosen for the American Library Association’s annual list of the best genre fiction. After graduating from Yale University, she embarked on a PhD in History at Harvard before leaving academia to acquire a JD at Harvard Law while authoring her “Pink Carnation” series of Napoleonic-set novels. She lives in New York City, where she now writes full time.



Q&A WAS THERE A PARTICULAR AUTHOR OR BOOK THAT INSPIRED YOU TO START WRITING? Way, way, back in the mists of time, back when people had big hair and leg warmers were a fashion statement rather than a joke, I made a book with crayon pictures and construction paper covers and thought, “THIS. This is what I want to do when I grow up.” That was in kindergarten or thereabouts, but my fate was really sealed when someone gave me a copy of E.L. Konigsburg’s A Proud Taste for Scarlet and Miniver when I was six. It’s the story of the life of Eleanor of Aquitaine and it’s snarky and clever and funny and just plain wonderful. I wanted more—so I wrote a sequel, as one does, narrated by Eleanor’s favorite (apocryphal) horse, Beau Noir. That was my first foray into writing historical fiction and I never looked back. Thirty-odd years later… I’m still writing historical fiction! Although with rather less crayon and construction paper these days. WHAT KIND OF BOOKS DO YOU ENJOY READING? That’s always a tough question for me to answer, because I’ll read pretty much any genre as long as I love the voice. Dorothy Sayers’s Golden Age mystery novels, Georgette Heyer’s Regency romances, Ben Aaronovitch’s paranormal police procedurals, Judith Merkle Riley’s snort-out-loud funny historical fiction, Jen Lancaster’s wonderfully snarky memoirs, L.M. Montgomery’s gentle social satire…. If I fall into the prose, I’ll read it whatever it is. If the voice is flat, it doesn’t matter if it’s a fascinating topic or a great premise; it’s nails on a chalkboard to me. On my keeper shelf, I have all the books mentioned above, plus M.M. Kaye’s sweeping historical epics, Karleen Koen’s Through a Glass Darkly, Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind, and the fantasy novels of Robin McKinley (The Blue Sword, anyone?)

Among more recent releases, I’ve loved Helen Simonson’s Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand (about social and racial tensions in a contemporary British village), Ruth Ware’s In a dark, dark wood (psychological thriller), Karen White’s The Night the Lights Went Out (a contemporary/historical women’s fiction mix), Stephanie Barron’s That Churchill Woman (historical fiction about the life of Jennie Jerome, Winston Churchill’s mother), and Lucy Parker’s contemporary romances.

I talk about what I’m reading every Friday on the News page of my website. If you have a chance, please stop by my Weekly Reading Round-Up and add your own suggestions! I’m always on the lookout for new books and authors. WHAT HAVE YOU EDITED OUT OF YOUR BOOKS, AND WHY? I keep a file for each book called “Old Chapters”, where I put the bits I know I have to cut, but can’t bear to delete. One of my editors once told me, in the tone of someone suffering a faint headache, “Your characters are very… talky.” And it’s true. Once my characters start bantering, they don’t like to stop. They can batter each other with wit for pages and pages—but that does tend to bring the plot to a grinding halt. It’s a wrench to cut good dialogue, but if it doesn’t forward the story, away it goes. The other thing in my old chapters file? Lots and lots of epilogues. I love epilogues. I love those scenes where you get to see the characters all settled in their lives and all the plot threads tied up in a perky little bow. Editors do not love epilogues. So most of mine have wound   33

Q&A featured}


up relegated to the Old Chapters file on my computer, and, from there, to the Outtakes section of my website. I will declare one epilogue moment of success: when you read my upcoming novel, THE SUMMER COUNTRY, you’ll find an epilogue at the end of the book…. Maybe that’s why THE SUMMER COUNTRY is my favorite book to date?

HOW DO YOU CREATE THE CHARACTERS FOR YOUR BOOKS? It’s less that I create them and more that I bump into them at a cocktail party, and, over a few drinks, they proceed to tell me their life story. (Or sometimes they only tell me part of it, and I have to read between the lines and try to make sense of their omissions.) Only there’s generally less pomegranate martini involved and more caramel macchiato. Michelangelo once famously declared that he didn’t create his sculptures; he freed the figures trapped in the stone. That’s the way I feel about my characters. They exist already, complete and entire, and I’m just trying to figure them out and faithfully transcribe their stories. As to where my characters really come from…. They leap out at me from all sorts of places. The catalyst for my last book, The English Wife, was the image of a woman, in Gibson Girl garb, falling off the parapet of a robber baron's mansion into the Hudson River. All I knew about her was that she was the English Wife of a New York patrician, that there were dreadful rumors about her, and that none of those rumors were true (see what I mean about characters coming to me pre-existing?). I followed her story backwards from that moment on the parapet, back to the beginning, and the whole story unrolled from there, from that one image of a Gilded Age woman on a parapet falling into the Hudson River.

My upcoming book, The Summer Country, came out of a Caribbean vacation I’d taken with my two best friends from graduate school nearly a decade ago. We’d gone on a plantation tour, where we heard the story of how the owner’s “Portuguese ward” had died in a fire. That child, the guide explained, was neither Portuguese nor the owner’s ward, but his child by an enslaved woman. That story haunted me. Not so much because of the child, or the father, who’d gone mad—but because of the absence in that story where the mother had been. Who was that nameless enslaved woman? How had she felt about her child being taken away? What had her relationship been with the owner? Where was she in all this? That was the spark for the story, but to bring that unknown woman back to life, I spent two years researching the history of nineteenth century Barbados, hunting down books about the lives of enslaved women, and bit by bit, that missing mother came to life for me and became the heart of The Summer Country.

34. - Spring 2019

Jane Celebrat ingAusten profile}

Written by Nan Mahon Photos courtesy Lynn Ossolinski

In the British countryside of the 18th Century, women had limited options. They needed to be strong, smart, and strategic to achieve success. It is these women who are portrayed in the novels and complete works of Jane Austen. Members of The Jane Austen Society call themselves “Janeites” because they celebrate the life, the times, and the works of the renowned English writer. They do it because it is literary, educational, and just plain fun. The movement has grown in the Sacramento area due to the leadership of Lynn Ossolinski.

Maybe it was that summer in 1965, when Lynn graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno and traveled through Europe that the lure of 18th Century England began. The elegance of that simpler time captivated the interest of the young woman who had just earned a double Bachelor’s Degree in education and history.

“I was there the entire summer and I took in all the museums and historical sites possible,” Lynn recalls.

After her summer in Europe, Lynn married her college sweetheart, Bill Ossolinski, and settled in her home state of Nevada. She worked as a teacher and a school librarian for 30 years, eventually earned two master’s degrees and moved on to become a college professor. Upon retirement, the Ossolinskis moved to Rancho Murieta and Lynn became a major volunteer in her community.

36. - Spring 2019

It was then that Lynn again read the novels she had read in middle school and began seriously romancing the works and life of the English author, Jane Austen. She founded and co-chaired a Jane Austen Reading Group with a friend, Bonnie Allinger, a

Wilton resident. Their goal was to understand the sometimes dark but often inspiring women in Austen’s stories. “Our group quickly grew from three to 35 and we joined the Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA), Greater Sacramento Region eight years ago at the 200 year anniversary of her novels,” she said. “The Public Library System organized programs and classes for the public to celebrate Jane Austen.”

It was Lynn’s love of history, blended with literature, that inspired her to work toward her goal. In 2018, she was elected as Regional Coordinator of the Jane Austen Society, Greater Sacramento Region and joined the multitude of “Janeites” across the nation. The followers of the author continue to expand and splinter into many groups and avenues of study around Jane Austen. Some of those include a cooking club with recipes from Austen’s period in England, an email-based writing club, and a knitting club where crafters listen to tapes of Austen’s

It was Lynn’s love of history, blended with literature, that inspired her to work toward her goal. In 2018, she was elected as Regional Coordinator of the Jane Austen Society, Greater Sacramento Region and joined the multitude of “Janeites” across the nation.


“One doesn’t read Jane Austen books, one rereads them.” work as they knit. There is a performance group to act out her plays, a movie group to enjoy films based on her books, and a reading group to discuss her books. Many of the members dress in period costume when they attend an event, especially the teas. They sew the costumes themselves, rent them, or buy them from shops in England. “Of special interest to me are the artfully handwritten letters and the elegant tea parties of that era,” Lynn said.

That interest led her to collect beautiful and fanciful tea pots and cups from around the world. Lynn co-chaired the Treasured Tea Time event for the Jane Austen Birthday Tea and was a table hostess for JASNA of Greater Sacramento, both in 2014.

Jane Austen was born into the British gentry in 1775. Her father was a minister and sired eight children. It was a period in history when women were dependent on marriage for a living. But, Austen never married. Instead, she wrote what may be the beginning of the romance novels so popular today.

38. - Spring 2019

Her most well-known works are Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Sense and Sensibility. They are among the literary classics in history and are often sentimental, sometimes sarcastic, and seemingly satire of the time. In addition, her body of work included plays, essays, and short stories.

Austen died in 1817, but her work continued to be popular. Rudyard Kipling, a legendry English author who wrote of his country’s wars, told a story of soldiers trapped in battle during WWI. Facing certain death, the stranded fighters were reading a Jane Austen novel and found comfort in it. An avid reader, Lynn belongs to several book clubs and helps raise money for children-based literacy projects. For now, her heart lies in the advancement of JASNA. She plans to promote the organization with the beginning of new groups, a website, and more events as membership grows. Meetings and events are held at library branches across Sacramento County. “My dream is to bring a class into schools and universities,” Lynn said.

JASNA member Mary Adams-Wiley has created a new Jane Austen reading group, Abstentious Study Group of the JASNA. They will be meeting at the Elk Grove library beginning in June. Check the branch schedule for more information. “We began with twelve individuals meeting at my house,” said Mary. “We organized and selected two books.” The group plans to study as well as read Austen’s work, watch her films, and look into her biography.

“One doesn’t read Jane Austen books, one rereads them,” she said. “We keep finding more treasures each time.” Many men have shown interest in belonging and the organizers encourage them to join.

“Considering there are three million people in the region, I know there are many more “Janeites” out there,” Lynn said.

For information to attend an event, visit the Jane Austen website or check with your local library.   39

Reviews brought to you by the

art} BOOKS

The Spy and the Traitor


By: Ben Macintyre Book Reviews by BRENDLE WELLS If you are familiar with the history of the Cold War, the tale of Oleg Gordievsky might be a story you know. He was the top KGB man in London for the USSR but turned to the West out of principle, after seeing the Communist system in his country as problematic and criminal. For a decade he fed information to MI6 who in turn shared it with the US and other western allies without sharing the name of their agent. The US became determined to know who the agent was and ultimately their hunt led to his downfall because the CIA agent assigned to find him was Aldrich Ames, himself a double agent working for the KGB. To read that summary, it’s clear that this is an epic story. But to read the full account is astonishing. It seems almost too preposterous to be real—but it was, complete with a dramatic escape from behind enemy lines. In a propulsive narrative, Macintyre details the spy game at the height of the Cold War, both the players, and the methods used to steal secrets. The reader is drawn in, curious and eager to know more. As the peril grows and dire consequences seem inevitable, the tension becomes almost unbearable and the book unputdownable. This is nonfiction that reads like fiction and would be an excellent choice for all thriller readers. Crown Publishing, 2018

American Spy

By: Lauren Wilkinson American Spy is many things, but it is not a traditional spy story and it’s all the better for it. Wilkinson takes the elements of a great espionage story (it’s based on true events) and combines them with family drama, and the racism and sexism of the Cold War era. Marie Mitchell is an intelligence officer for the FBI, but she is a young black woman working in a boy’s club. When she is offered the chance to join a task force to undermine the new charismatic leader of Burkina Faso, Thomas Sankara, she accepts, despite secretly admiring what he has done for his country and strongly suspecting she was recruited only because of her appearance. The intrigue of the 1980’s spy story alternates with the story of Marie’s childhood, where we see the inspirations for her career choice, and with the present day, where we see the consequences of that choice. The heart of all of this, of course, is Marie, who the reader gets to know intimately. Because of the many moving parts confidently woven together, there are many ways to enjoy this book including its revolutionary new take on the spy genre or as an intimate portrait of the experience of a black woman in a particular place and time. For those reasons and more, it would make an excellent choice for book groups as well as literary fiction or suspense readers. Random House, 2019

40. - Spring 2019

art} BOOKS

Tiger vs. Nightmare

Author/Illustrator: Emily Tetri Children's Book Reviews By JUSTIN AZEVEDO Every night, little Tiger brings extra dinner to her bedroom for the monster under her bed. They talk and play games until bedtime arrives when, as Tiger snuggles up and goes to sleep, Monster perches on the edge of her bed and scares away any nightmares that decide to visit. This has been the routine for as long as Tiger can remember, until the night a nightmare arrives that is too big and too mean for Monster to scare away— and keeps coming back. Forced to huddle under the covers together, the two friends must decide what to do next. Tiger comes to the conclusion that if Monster can’t scare this one away, she might have to step up and do it herself. This children’s graphic novel easily doubles as a picture book, with a relatively short length punctuated by spare, easy-to-read dialogue and beautiful full-page artwork spreads. The illustrations are striking, and contrast the adorably expressive Tiger and Monster with swirling nightmare abstractions. Watercolor sweeps of blues, purples, and golds denote not only the passing of night to day, but the evolution of fear to triumph, as well. The story of teamwork and finding a way to be brave will resonate with any young readers who have ever dealt with night terrors of their own. A wonderful choice for kids who read either picture books or comics, recommended for ages 4 to 9. First Second, 2018

The Next Great Paulie Finkildcard

By: Ali Benjamin

Caitlyn Breen spent a lot of time learning and refining the rules of making friends and being popular, in order to prepare herself for her first day of middle school. Just before that fateful day arrives, however, Caitlyn moves with her mom to rural Vermont. She lands in a seventh-grade class of only eleven students in a school housed in a run-down mansion, where her rules don’t help her at all. Everybody knows each other, nobody is concerned with being cool, and she’s definitely the odd one out despite all of her hard work at blending in. Unfailingly friendly, her new classmates tap her to judge a reality television-style competition to dub the next Paulie Fink, a boy infamous for his pranks who has mysteriously not returned to Mitchell School. Her supposed objectivity and standoffishness gives her a window to better study and judge her challenging new surroundings, and in doing so she learns exactly how much her new classmates mean to each other, and what the run-down old school means to all of them. This story sets a notably lighter tone than Benjamin’s previous book, The Thing About Jellyfish, and provides uniquely charming and extraordinarily witty look at the tumultuous process of entering middle school. The story touches on class issues and bullying with nuance and wit, and comes to a heartwarming conclusion. A funny and gratifying read, recommended for ages 9 to 13. Little, Brown & Company, 2019

42. - Spring 2019

Visit WWW.SACLI BRARY.ORG For details, telephone the Sacramento Public Library at (916) 264-2920 or visit


Love Built Our Family Written by Brooke Frick Photos by Jessica Bowers Photography

It was a beautiful sunny day in February when Niki and Taylor sat in a small Sacramento court-room with their three active, curly-haired boys. They were finalizing the adoption of their third son in three years. Only four years ago, in 2015, Niki and Taylor began their home study to become adoptive parents. They never dreamed their life would be so full of love and laughter—and yes, a little bit of chaos—so soon after. But they wouldn’t change a thing. “We waited years for this!” says Niki, the adoptive mother of three biological brothers, ages three, two and one. When they were dating, Niki and Taylor knew they wanted adoption to be a part of their family story. So, in 2015, after being told by doctors there was no explanation for their infertility, they knew adoption was next. They completed their 44. - Spring 2019

home study quickly and were set to sign papers on another February afternoon in 2016.

first son, exactly nine months after they began the process of fostering to adopt.

That morning, they got a call asking them to sign papers because there was a baby ready for placement. Amazingly, he was one of Cindy Lopez’s emergency placement babies. (See article, Baby Lady, in the winter issue). Cindy took care of him for six weeks and was hoping to place him with a family as soon as possible. However, for one reason or another, the attempts did not pan out. Luckily, for Niki and Taylor.

Then, one year later, they got another surprising phone call with news that a little baby boy had been born… the biological brother of their first son. It was much sooner than they expected, but they were more than willing to welcome another baby boy into their home, with the hopes of adopting him also.

Excited at the opportunity to foster and hopefully adopt this baby boy, Niki and Taylor left work early to sign the papers and bring home their

Although it was risky to take in another baby— when the adoption had not yet been finalized with their first son, Niki and her husband were willing to take the risk so they could share their love with the boys.



Even though fosteradoption can be a riskier route than some because of the possibility of a baby reunifying with his or her biological parents, Niki has nothing but great things to say about the chance to foster and love these kids. “Adopting, through foster care, means one less child raised in the system,” she says. “So many children age out of the foster system and never get the opportunity to be in a forever family.” The adoption of both brothers was eventually finalized; and Niki and Taylor were happy to be a family of four. But by February of 2018, they felt ready to add to their family again. This time, they were thinking pink. Niki was starting to decorate a nursery for a girl, in the hopes of soon adding one. But on March 1, the day they opened their home back up for placement (much to their amazement) their third son was born. Again, another surprising phone call, another baby boy, another biological brother. It was a no-brainer to take him in. However, initially the county was skeptical. Could they make this work? Was it too much? But one in-home visit from the social worker and she quickly agreed that this was a good situation, and baby brother needed to join the others.

Although they had always wanted children, they never expected them so close together, nor did they expect they would get siblings. It has been one wonderful surprise after another. There are many things Niki loves about fosteradoption. She could go on and on about the benefits for kids and parents, but she admits, “Our greatest joy is seeing God’s hand in it. We went from having no explanation why we can’t have children, to suddenly having an abundance of children.” Even though foster-adoption can be a riskier route than some because of the possibility of a baby reunifying with his or her biological parents, Niki has nothing but great things to say about the chance to foster and love these kids. “No matter how long these children are in your care, it is the absolute best place for them…you have the opportunity to love them every minute of that precious time you have them. A lot of these kiddos come from some hard places; so giving them a safe, loving and

nurturing environment is the best gift you can give them. Don't be afraid of reunification,” she says. When asked if they are done adopting Niki laughs, “We get asked that question a lot. We just smile because we are known for not being able to say no to any child, because after all, it is Biblical. But in all seriousness, we are currently staying a certified foster-adopt home; but we are closed for placement except for biological siblings. If any additional bio-siblings do come along, we would not even hesitate to build our family in that way.”

Court rooms may not seem like fitting places for dreams to come true, but for Niki and Taylor sitting there with their three energetic sons and surrounded by family and friends, it was nothing other than that. “They may not have our blood running through their veins, but love is so much greater than blood. Love built our family,” says Niki.   45


Jessica Photographed by

Liz Zimbelman Photography

WHO ARE YOU? Jessica Campos, 27, born and raised in Elk Grove, Sac State alumni, and state worker. Zachary Campos, 31, born and raised in Sacramento. Works in Hospitality.

How did you meet?

Zachary has been best friends with Jessica's brother, Michael, for years! In 2015, Zachary and his friend, Jordan, needed a roommate

46. - Spring 2019

in their 3 bedroom apartment and the rest is history.

The Proposal?

April 28, 2017 - Jessica, Zachary, and their families went on a vacation in Oahu, Hawaii. Jessica already had an idea that something big might happen, but didn't know when. It was the second to last day of their vacation and the group decided to go to Kualoa Ranch

to ride ATV's. They stopped at different famous movie sites on their tour. The last stop was at the top of a mountain overlooking the valley. The tour guide was taking pictures of Jessica and Zach and said, "Okay, I think I have enough pictures!" Zach said, "Oh, can you take one more?" then he proposed.

What is love?

Jessica: Love is giving the last bite of your fa-



Love getting to

wake up everyday next to the person that makes you the happiest. Coming home from a long day knowing the person you love will be home to make you smile.   47




I that his patience never waivers with me, no matter how much of a headache I can be. He is humble, kind, and treats everyone with respect. He also has the cutest dimples! vorite food to your husband, but really... Love is being able to spend time with your significant other and just being happy doing nothing. It's having the same interests in things, respecting each others' differences and embracing each others' flaws. Love is wanting the best for your partner and genuinely wanting them to succeed in everything they do and being there to cheer them on, support them, and being their shoulder to cry on.

What is love?

Zachary: Love is getting to wake up everyday next to the person that makes you the happiest. Coming home from a long day knowing the person you love will be home to make you smile. Love is having that natural communication and trust with your partner. Love is having that gut feeling that you know you married your soulmate.

What do you love most about him?

I love his big heart and how he always puts

48. - Spring 2019

others before himself. I love that he has a tough exterior, but deep down is a true romantic. I love how supportive he is and how he makes me feel like I'm on top of the world. I love that his patience never waivers with me, no matter how much of a headache I can be. He is humble, kind, and treats everyone with respect. He also has the cutest dimples!

What do you love most about her?

I love her contagious personality. She always makes me smile, no matter how terrible I feel from a long day. I love how courageous she is...never afraid to go after what she wants. I love how silly she can be, dancing and making jokes all the time keeps me in good spirits.

When did you know you were in love?

Jessica: It's hard to pinpoint exactly when I knew I was in love... but I always think about a time before we started dating. I saw him eating Cinnabon all by himself in Arden Fair

Mall (when they first opened). I knew from that moment this guy was something special.

When did you know you were in love?

Zachary: We both agree that it's hard to really say when. It could've been the accumulation of things she did that made me believe she was the one. Whether it was her personality or her amazing cooking. Or when she made us walk home from the bar and we talked and flirted the whole two hour walk home. Or it could've been because she's a bigger Kings fan than me!

Fun facts

Die Hard Sacramento Kings Fans!

Lived down the street from each other for almost 20 years before finally becoming friends.

Honeymoon plans

We're going to Maui for 7 nights in June and will be staying at the Grand Wailea... so excited!

Photographer Liz Zimbelman Venue Scott's Seafood on the River

Rentals La Tavola Linens, Mimi Linens Florist Visual Impact

Videographer Wild35, Paul Ortiz

Tux Rentals Men's Warehouse

Caterer Scott's Seafood on the River

Bride's Dress Miosa

Wedding Coordinator Courtney Reading (Scott's) DJ Matt Brys, Extreme Productions Entertainment Desserts/cake Ettores Hair and makeup Polish and Pout

Bridesmaid's dress Rings Sharif Jewelers & Zales Signs and Place Cards Chalk & Design Photo Booth Jaybee Events   49


PLAY BALL By Anna Osborn, LMFT, owner of Life Unscripted Counseling

It’s officially spring, which around my house means baseball season. We have three different game/practice schedules that we’re navigating this time of year and sometimes the madness of it all feels crazy; luckily enough most of the time it’s crazy in a good way. My daughter played softball last year and although it wasn’t her favorite thing in the world, she was a trooper. Her games were a bit (a lot) on the slow side, some kids at bats stretched well into the 20-minute mark and there was very little ball hitting, base running action. To make it even harder, when she went to watch her brother’s game, (in her eyes) it looked like he was having more fun. His games were a bit more action packed than the tee she found herself hitting on and she left each game feeling sort of deflated 50. - Spring 2019

only to ask, “how come I don’t get to do strikeouts and run the bases like brother does?” Well you can imagine my surprise when signups came around this year and she said she was willing to give it another try. Yes, I might have nudged her to give it one last shot but at the end of the day, she was the one willing to step up to the plate. The wild thing is she’s having a blast so far. I don’t know if it’s the difference of a year, a coach that’s really focused on fun or being a bit more coordinated, but regardless, she’s having a great time. Honestly, I think the biggest difference is that she sees herself getting a little better. Her confidence is growing, and it’s absolutely transforming her attitude. Now, she’s no Jenny Finch; but the girl is hitting the ball and knows to always look for the play at first. She’s seeing herself do this hard thing and it’s starting to build her confidence.

The amazing thing about confidence, which I feel we need to be reminded of at any age, is that it’s not a requirement to do the hard thing, it’s the result you get from doing it anyway. Let me say that again…Confidence is not a requirement to be brave! It’s the byproduct you receive from showing up anyway. Sadly, I see so many folks believing that confidence really is the prerequisite to taking action. You tell yourself enough times that you must feel certain about your ability, in order to take on said goal, and soon you start to believe it’s true. When in fact, it couldn’t be further from the truth; believing that confidence is required (before you risk) is one of the most self-limiting beliefs you hold. You can spend so much time talking yourself out of trying the hard thing, that you miss opportunity upon opportunity to take the first step.

health} And I get that risk is relative. What may seem risky to one, may seem like a walk in the park to another. If we look at risk as a spectrum, I would argue that risking… in our intimate relationship is pretty far up there on the fear factor. We’re all probably more likely to risk with folks that are farther outside that circle of emotional connection, simply because it doesn’t hurt as bad if you fail. I truly believe that telling your partner how you feel, what you think, and what you need is one the bravest things you can do. It’s also the area where I see couples hold back the most. You create all sorts of excuses why now isn’t the right time—or how not knowing the words to use, or the right way to say it, means you don’t need to try at all. Well, let me tell you in the most loving and kind way I can, DO IT ANYWAY. You’re never going to feel any more confident, than you do in this moment, if you continue to stay exactly in the same place. If you’re waiting for the right setting with the perfectly eloquent wording, you’re going to be sitting on the bench for-ever! You must get in the game. You have to accept that you’ re going to strike out, and that’s the risk you take for being at bat. You also risk hitting a grand slam, but nobody wants to see that as a risk. You build up all the bad things that could happen, let the fear become your truth, and then use that as your excuse not to try. I’m not here to argue that there aren’t a thousand different and very valid reasons to be cautious in love. But if you believe feeling confident is the requirement to tackle any of those 999 reasons, then you’re swimming in a self-limiting belief.

I truly believe that telling your partner how you feel, what you think, and what you need is one the bravest things you can do. It’s also the area where I see couples hold back the most. Start small… take a baby step, risk an inch, but man oh man, you’ve got to start somewhere. You can be nervous, scared, uncertain and still try it anyway. Because I can say (with the utmost certainty) that when you try, you will absolutely feel more confident. It is literally the most amazing gift you get from doing it anyway. I know this because of the work I do, of the ways I see couples risk in love in order to fight for something better together. I know this because when I see people risk sharing of themselves in love; how they feel, what they need, how they think, they become more confident to try it again next time. They begin to see the amazing transformation that occurs when they take that first step onto the plate. And I know this because I’ve had the privilege of seeing the giant smiles on my kids’ faces when they risked, came out the other side, and realized they were able to do it despite the fear. Give yourself and your relationship the permission to take a risk. Stop limiting yourself by believing that you have to be confident to try that hard thing. Let yourself bask in the confidence you get from doing it anyway. And if you’re up for it, let me know how it goes…

Anna Osborn, LMFT, is the owner of Life Unscripted Counseling. She works with couples to improve communication, deepen intimacy and heal from betrayal. Anna was born and raised in California and lives in the Elk Grove with her husband, school aged twins and boxer dog. She is an avid sports fan and can often be found at the ballpark cheering on her local team.   51


When Care Is Available,

Accessible and Comfortable, too By Hillary Van Horn-Gatlin, PhD Kaiser Permanente

Prior to the opening of our new mental health and wellness center in Elk Grove, I got a sneak peek at what many of my colleagues and leaders had been working tirelessly to create. The hundreds of hours, effort, thought and attention to detail are visible from the first glance. From the color schemes, to the paintings, the flooring to the tile work, every aspect was picked out by hand with our members in mind. My colleague Cindy Ford, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, is among 30 providers now housed in the new Elk Grove center and she said “It’s an energizing place. The sur54. - Spring 2019

roundings are light and airy. That impacts how the space and subsequently the people coming here feel.” As a psychologist, I couldn’t agree more. An accessible, welcoming and healing environment makes all the difference for patients and therapists. I am proud to be part of an organization like Kaiser Permanente that has invested extensively to refurbish, and add new sites, where behavioral health care is delivered. The Elk Grove center is part of Kaiser Permanente’s investment of more than $500 million in Northern California between 2016 and 2020. From Roseville to Fresno, and all points in between, Kaiser Permanente is adding significant capacity to better serve members through individual visits for mental health and wellness care. There are also new facilities in Sacramento and Roseville.


From my perspective as a psychologist, feeling safe and at peace in your surroundings is an important part of the healing process. As a referring specialist to this clinic, I am confident and excited in the care I know my patients will receive, both in terms of the mental health providers and services this new location houses, and in the setting itself.

In these new spaces, we provide addiction medicine and rehabilitation services, intensive outpatient programs, specialty programs related to eating disorders, autism spectrum disorder, and a larger array of services, therapy, groups and classes, for our child and adult members. Therapists and managers helped design the mental health and wellness centers with an emphasis on creating a relaxing environment. There’s a variety of seating arrangements, wireless technology, and more in-person greetings. Physical barriers between members and staff were removed while bringing in abundant natural light and views in offices and common areas. Alongside our therapists in the Greater Sacramento area, Kaiser Permanente has been on a path to be the best mental health and addiction care program in the country. In addition to improvements in our physical spaces, technology and overall capacity, we have increased our staff by 30 percent since 2015 – more than 500 therapists in California – even though there is a state and national shortage of mental health professionals. I am proud of Kaiser Permanente’s commitment to do even more to innovate, to advance and ex-

pand care in our communities, and to continually seek to improve what we do. For Cindy, and the other members of my team, the Elk Grove mental health and wellness facility has given them several upgrades. Cindy said new gathering spaces help build engaged working relationships, improving the overall functioning of the team. Group rooms accommodate classes and therapy sessions of any size. There are water bottle filling stations to keep patients relaxed and hydrated.

“Patients comment on the décor. They appreciate the feeling of being in a modern, updated environment,” said Cindy, who feels the space is representative of good care. “We want people to feel confident about the care they receive and positive about where they receive that care.” From my perspective as a psychologist, feeling safe and at peace in your surroundings is an important part of the healing process. As a referring specialist to this clinic, I am confident and excited in the care I know my patients will receive, both in terms of the mental health providers and services this new location houses, and in the setting itself.

Psychologist Hillary Van Horn-Gatlin, PhD, joined Kaiser Permanente in South Sacramento in 2011 and works in the Department of Adult Medicine and Women's Health as a Behavioral Medicine Specialist. She works alongside physicians and staff in various departments serving Kaiser Permanente members and patients. She is a wife and a mother. She has been a speaker or presenter on topics related to the impact of health conditions on family functioning, grief and loss, women's and children's health issues and parent-child support. She enjoys spending her spare time with her family- particularly outdoors when the weather cooperates!   55



By Dr. Dayle A. Imperato, Rejuvenation Wellness & Aesthetic Medicine

According to the Journal of Endocrinology, “half of healthy men between the ages of 50-70 years will have a bioavailable testosterone level below the lowest level seen in healthy men who are 20-40 years of age”.

Testosterone declines with age beginning in the early 30’s. By the age of 40, levels naturally decline by 1% per year. During the time between 25 to 75 years of age, most men will have a 50% decrease in bioavailable testosterone.

56. - Spring 2019

We’ve all heard of menopause, but have you heard of andropause? It is the male counterpart of menopause. It is less sudden in onset than female menopause, but results in a decrease in bioavailable testosterone and may have serious long term consequences.


Loss of drive and competitive edge, decreased level of fitness and effectiveness of workouts, joint pain and muscle stiffness, increased brain aging with decreased memory, increased heart disease with cir-

culation issues, changes in body composition (such as abdominal obesity), fatigue, depression, mood changes, irritability, reduced libido, reduced morning erections and erectile tension, decreased intensity or orgasms and longer recovery time between orgasms.

Physical signs of testosterone deficiency can be dry eyes, reduced muscle tone, depressed attitude, nervous, irritable, hesitant, poor concentration and memory, decreased axillary and pubic hair, pale skin, increased fat in breasts, abdomen and hips, decreased muscle mass and strength, hot

health} Stress can result in a lowering of testosterone levels because as the stress hormone cortisol goes up, it suppresses the production of testosterone.

Over time, the amount of testosterone produced is less and it becomes less available, which accentuates the effect of the declining levels. flashes, excessive emotions, unnecessary worry, anxiety, fear, loss of self-confidence, anemia, and persistent fatigue that increases with activity.

Long term testosterone deficiency may increase susceptibility to the following diseases: Cardiovascular disease, myocardial infarction, coronary insufficiency, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, thrombosis, infertility, obesity, type II diabetes, metabolic syndrome, dementia, alzheimers, frailty syndrome, decrease in bone density (osteoporosis), and inflammation.


Stress can result in a lowering of testosterone levels because as the stress hormone cortisol goes up, it suppresses the production of testosterone. Cortisol also interacts with receptors in the hypothalamus which is the main modifier of short term memory and it increases the immune system inflammatory response resulting in an unregulated immune

system. Other factors that contribute to low testosterone are insulin resistance, smoking, toxin exposure, prescription drugs, infections, excessive alcohol, increased prolactin levels (stress, hypothyroidism, kidney disease), and trauma.

The aging male also increases production of Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) which increases the percentage of bound testosterone, which, in turn, decreases the bioavailable testosterone level. So over time, the amount of testosterone produced is less and it becomes less available, which accentuates the effect of the declining levels.


Treatment is multifactorial, and plans are individually designed to fit the needs of each person. Areas that influence the outcome are insulin sensitivity, exercise, cortisol demand, amount of sleep, toxin exposure, levels of inflammation, prescription drugs, alcohol use, and appropriate hormone balance. Levels of testosterone can be

measured by serum, urine or saliva. Testosterone replacement can be done with gels, creams or injections. Questions such as, patient age, lifestyle, diet, history of elevated PSA, desire for fertility all must be discussed and the best treatment plan decided upon weighing all the pros and cons of treatment options. Low testosterone not only affects men. It also commonly occurs in women, but the approach to replacement is different. Keep in mind that ALL of the androgens, estrogens, progesterone, and cortisol come from cholesterol. Like a symphony, it is a balance of all of these that support health and wellbeing. No hormone lives in isolation and the direction of pathways, thus production of any hormone, can be altered by many different influences. If you feel “out of sorts” with the world, come in for a consultation. With a few labs and my help, you’ll soon be back on the path to wellness. Call Rejuvenation Wellness & Aesthetic Medicine at 916 670-7601 today.   57


What I’ve Learned About

Community By CT Morris - BS Elementary Ed., MS Ed.

The word community evokes many feelings. It has become a catch-all phrase or metaphoric dumping group for everything from social networks to a community in Arkansas called Toad Suck (whose name dates back to a tavern that was a frequent stop for boatmen that sucked on the bottle until they swelled up like toads). I know the definition of community is; “A feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals.” Therefore, Facebook and Twitter folk could call themselves a community as they give thumbs up to comments they agree with. But that is such a shallow community—a community that is easily severed with one click on a device “unfriend”. I believe community is more than a simple one-dimensional statement.

Community is a group of people that feel they belong together and care about each other. In my opinion this is the complete and essential core of a community. The individuals in that group aren’t strangers, they have a relationship with each other. Trust— this is the ingredient that makes a community materialize…they develop trust. When we develop trust it forms teamwork, input, care, confidence, and wellbeing. Therefore, as a teacher of elementary students—I strive to make my 58. - Spring 2019

classroom a community. While other teachers are stressed out about common core, state testing and English language development tests, I feel those things are a walk in the park. When students have an environment to learn in that is safe, they will excel. The most important legacy I can leave my students is giving them a sense of community. I want them to feel they belong, that they are loved…I don’t want them to be lonely or fearful. A classroom should give children a sense of home, and of family. Even though they are diverse ethnically and culturally, they know they are accepted. I don’t pair my students together, they work in groups of three and four, and it works…because they have developed a community mindset, “together”. I remember the days when people in the neighborhood were…neighbors and part of a community. Yes, I’m that old! Then came the years of everyone teaching children “stranger danger”. This—I feel was a sad, gloomy time period. It was an, I don’t trust anyone time. I believe that it caused more harm to children than we will ever know. Teaching children distrust of strangers or community members… putting community in the evil and

creepy category and not differentiating between good and bad. Being cautious is different than looking at community members as dangerous. Instead, children should be taught to recognize good strangers that they can ask for help. You know—police officers, firefighters, parent or parents with children, teachers, principals, and librarians. Instilling confidence and empowering them to know how to protect themselves from danger. Many children are trapped in their houses for lots of reasons, including the marked increase in time spent interacting with electronic devices. Community camaraderie is a great thing especially when kids have other kids in the community to play with and a safe environment to play in.

There are many people who have the same interests and goals, however, they are not communities. I’ve learned that true communities have trust, shared goals, and a relationship…these communities will positively impact our world.

education}   59   59

HAVE YOU PAID YOUR FIRST WORK EXPERIENCE FORWARD? EGUSD Transition Services and Area Businesses Partner to Provide High School Students with First Work Experiences By Denise Henderson, Employment Placement Specialist Elk Grove Unified School District- Transition Services Program

I grew up thinking that the daintily made floral arrangements and dozens of red roses displayed in the local “Flower Power” floral shop window were surely some of the most luxurious things in life! I was more than thrilled when I got my first job working in that very shop. I remember being so excited about the opportunity to work in a place surrounded by literally hundreds of flowers destined to be part of some exciting celebration or very romantic gesture. I had no previous work experience and no idea what the job would entail.

I got the job like a lot of people get their first jobs, through a friend of a friend. Unfortunately, sometime after the first week or so I got FIRED! Well, technically I believe my employer and I decided mutually that things “just weren’t working out.” You may wonder what I did to find myself no longer employed in the job of my dreams after such a short time. Well, I was given the seemingly simple task of prepping a fresh load of long-stemmed red roses for the upcom-

60. - Spring 2019

ing Valentines holiday. I watched a short demonstration by the florist who wielded a very sharp, hooked shaped knife as though it were an implement of magic while working his way through a handful of longstemmed roses quickly and efficiently.

With a lot of enthusiasm, I attempted to carefully wield this unique cutting tool like I had observed and unfortunately for me, the flowers, and the florist… I was unable to muster that same magic from the hooked knife. When the florist eventually returned to the scene, he gasped in what I (as a 16-year-old) believed to be absolute horror at what he saw. I had massacred buckets of beautiful deep red roses by reducing them from their more than 24-inch glory and five-dollar value, to half of both. My first job experience ended abruptly; but I am very thankful to Ron, the store owner, who gave me the opportunity for a first work experience. Legendary actress Helen Hayes once said, “The expert in anything was once a beginner.” While I am still quite charmed by nice floral arrangements, I did not persevere on to become a professional florist. I did, however, go on to have several more job opportunities. I like to think I have become a much better employee with each one.

First Work Experiences Every working adult has a story about their first job. All first job experiences do have one thing in common, someone gave the person a first chance. Recollections of first chances (and the people who provided the opportunity) is often a motivator for many of the Elk Grove businesses that partner with the Elk Grove Unified School District’s Transition Services program. The Transition Services program is part of the EGUSD Special Education Department. The program had been utilizing WorkAbility and Transition Partnership Program funds to provided paid work experience opportunities for high school students for nearly 30 years. Over 180 EGUSD students participate in paid work experiences at Elk Grove businesses each year through the program. Business partners include many local small businesses as well as several nationally known companies. Susie Franklin-Roeser, owner of Gifts from the Heart of Elk Grove, shares her experience, “I am extremely grateful to the women who gave me a first work experience opportunity. Being part of the Transition Services Program is a way that I can “pay it forward” to the next generation. Work Experience interns in my shop have a



Transtion Specailist Laurel Hochmuth reviews a job application with studnets at Valley High School.

Ryan Luke of Elk Grove Screen Printing at COHS class guest speaking about being a small business owner, the screen printing business and his own career path. variety of on the job training opportunities that help prepare them for future careers. Business-wise, working with the Transition Services Program has been a true ‘win-win’ opportunity. Being a new business with plenty of startup costs, having the opportunity to have interns who are paid through the Transition Services program has allowed us to get a little extra help we otherwise would not be able to afford.” Mariel Black of Sinful Treats is another enthusiastic partner of the program who also thinks partnering with the program is a “win-win. “We’ve had the most amazing group of students work with us during our busiest time of the year. This program not only helps students gain work experience, it also helps small business owners in many ways. Every one of us has something to contribute. This program has taught me to recognize each person’s talent and gifts, so we can work in harmony as a team." Transition Services staff continually consults with area businesses to keep apprised of local employment needs and trends. By staying in continual touch with employers, Transition Services is able to gather information regarding the skills and characteristics employers are seeking in potential employees. Being current with this information helps the program to better prepare students to meet the needs of employers and to experience increased success. As participants in the program, students are required to participate in Job Club seminars prior to starting a work experience. Seminars focus on “21st Century Workplace Readiness Skills” including collaboration, teamwork, critical thinking and problem solving. Students explore various careers as well as their individual interests and aptitudes, through labor market research, interest inventories and aptitude tests. Students also learn self-advocacy, self-awareness and leadership skills.

Bringing the student into the business and the business into the classroom. In addition to utilizing businesses for paid work experiences, Transition Services partners with local businesses to offer students opportunities to explore occupations in many job sectors. Inviting guest speakers into the classroom to share their knowledge of a particular industry, as well as their personal employment journey, is a great way to encourage students to start thinking about what they would like to do.

Kristin Berkery graphic designer reviews a future student designers portfolio.

Over 180 EGUSD students participate in paid work experiences at Elk Grove businesses each year through the program.

RYAN SANDERS is a senior at Cosumnes Oaks

High School and is in his second year participating with the Transition Services Program. Along with attending seminars at school, Ryan is currently in his second paid work experience, both having been in the automotive field, which is of high interest to Ryan. The California Auto Museum hosted Ryan in the fall. Carly Starr, museum curator, met with the Employment Placement Specialist to discuss how a partnership might work to provide Ryan with an experience. Ryan was assigned to Terry Emery, the lead docent of the automobile detail crew. Terry was a bit hesitant at first to have such a young person working with very valuable cars. Ryan quickly impressed him with his “formidable knowledge and interest in the automotive industry”. Terry shares that “Ryan was very reliable and performed his task with enthusiasm!” Ryan is currently in a work experience at Autotech. John, the owner, was very open to providing an experience when Job Developer Sherry Clifford first approached him with the idea of providing work experiences. When asked to host another student worker, John replied, "Of course, why not? Everybody wins!” Ryan’s mom, Lynn, has another son who went through the Transition Services program and is very grateful for the support her sons have received.

Ryan Sanders poses with his favorite car at the California Auto Museum, a Ford Mustang Boss 302.   61

BLAST 825 PIZZA is a business partner that ap-

proached the Transition Services Program about partnering to provide work experiences during Fall 2017. Blast 825 Pizza management had worked with similar programs in other regions before coming to Elk Grove. Mackenzie Petersen, Blast and Brew General Manager, really values the company’s ability to play a part in providing first work experiences. “We love working with our local Workability and Transition Partnership Programs. It is exciting to know we are able to shed such a positive elite on the youth entering the workforce. We love that we get to play a part in young lives by teaching them a work ethic and giving them essential skills needed to help their future endeavors.” BRANDON THAO is an EGUSD graduate who participated in a few paid work experiences with the Transition Services program. Brandon recommends current high school students give the Transition Services program a try. Brandon credits the program with helping him learn how important communication is at the workplace, how to deal with customers and how to be an effective team member. After doing a fantastic job during his placement at Blast 825 Pizza, he was hired directly and has been their employee for over a year.

Brandon Thao prepping a pizza at Blast 825 Pizza.

62. - Spring 2019

A Transition Services work experience student learns the screen printing process at Elk Grove Screen Printing. PGHS teacher Christine Lawson reviews student, Madison Carter's, portfolio.



Work experiences are not meant to lead to permanent hires but they do happen occasionally and is one of the several benefits to employer partners. Employers have the chance to train and evaluate students while assessing if there is a good for match for their business before putting the student on their own payroll. As the employer of record, EGUSD is responsible for the human resource and payroll necessities in addition to being responsible for the liability of having a student on a business site. It is always rewarding to hear from a former student about how the program impacted their employment journey. Program Administrator Linda Vargas has worked in Transition Services for nearly 25 years. Linda shared, “One of the most satisfying things about supporting high school students transitioning to the world of work is watching the self-esteem and confidence level of students greatly increase through these em-

ployment experiences. Business partnerships play a vital role in the successes of our Transition Services program and often have life-long impact on the youth in our community.” A large part of the program’s success is due to the strong connections with local businesses. Consistent communication and timely follow up are key. Program staff regularly reach out to local businesses sharing information about the program including the many benefits to employers and their customers. The program is always seeking opportunities to assist high school students with their transition to the world of work. If you are looking for a way to pay your first work opportunity forward’ consider partnering with the Transition Services program. Contact Denise Henderson, Employment Placement Specialist at or call (916) 686-7758. Partnership possibilities include but are not limited to guest speaking, job shadowing, business/ industry tours and work experience opportunities paid by EGUSD. Small business owners, entrepreneurs, and unique career areas are always welcome in addition to more traditional types of employment.

Dennis Buscher Elk Grove's Mr. History

By Elizabeth Pinkerton Photos by Louis Silveira and courtesy of the Elk Grove Historical Society

Dennis Buscher is well known in the Elk Grove and South Sacramento area because he has been a volunteer in many activities, especially those related to history. He is the longest serving and active member of the Elk Grove Historical Society, working to support the Society since its beginning in 1976— and is still very active. He has served as president as early as 1983, and other times as well, and held almost every position in the Board of Directors. Dennis knows all about the history of the Franklin area families, and he is everyone’s “go to” person when information is needed. Dennis’ great grandparents came to America with the Schmidt families in 1870 from Ostfriesland, Germany. They settled at what we now know as Point Pleasant, south of Franklin. The Methodist Church was the center of the community, and they founded it in 1885.

Dennis’ grandparents lived on 20+ acres, and they had a dairy. As did all families of that time, they raised and grew most of the food they needed for the family. This is how Dennis describes the lives of his parents: “My father, Henry C. Buscher, was born in 1904 and attended school in Point Pleasant. At the age of 13, he left home in the summer and worked on local ranches, saving his money for his dream to one day own a ranch. In 1934, he married Agnes Kunsting, a 3rd generation resident at of Franklin. Her maternal ancestors also came from from Germany in the 1870’s, and her father emigrated from Germany in 1903 and owned and operated the Franklin Hotel, Saloon and Social Hall. In the mid 1930s, Henry and Agnes purchased a 160 acre ranch in Franklin on which they operated a cattle business while they were partners in the Franklin Red & White General Merchandise Store. In the mid 1950’s, they devoted full time to their 200 head beef cattle operation. “Born into the family were three children - Kenneth, Dennis and Yvonne. Kenneth Buscher married Dianne Westlake of Elk Grove. They were ranchers in Franklin until 64. - Spring 2019

the City of Elk Grove moved west into Franklin and development crowded them out. They sold their ranch in Franklin and moved to Oregon where they could continue their ranching. Yvonne married Richard Bonacci and they live in Wilton. Her interest has always been horses and art, and she has been very successful in both of them. Yvonne was one of the founding members of the California Cow Girls, a drill team that performed throughout California. She has become an accomplished artist and has won awards throughout the United States for her western themed art work. “I graduated from Franklin Grammar School (1958), Elk Grove High School (1962) and Sacramento State College (1967) with a major in Business Administration, emphasis in Accounting. I started working while I was still in grammar school and continued until I retired in 2004. My first job was stocking shelves at Luttig’s Market in Franklin, and then progressed to cashiering and weighing hay trucks on the truck scale. While a junior in high school, I started working as a busboy at the new Valley Hi Country Club and stayed at that work until I graduated from college. “Immediately after graduation from college, I was drafted into the Army (during the Vietnam offensive) and I served my two years at the NATO base, 23rd USA Missile Detachment, in the Netherlands. I took a European discharge and traveled for a month throughout Europe and looked up my German relatives. I have since returned many times to Germany to attend the family reunions and cruise the Rhine River during Christmas.

“Upon returning to the United States, I joined the Franchise Tax Board as a tax auditor where I worked for 34 years, retiring as a Hearing Officer in the Legal Department, specializing in taxation of multinational corporations during business within and without California.” Dennis still lives in Franklin, and he continues to travel extensively to Europe, Mexico, England, Australia, Japan, and China. He finds the world and the different cultures fascinating. At an early age Dennis became interested in history and particularly in the local history and antiques. He dug for bottles in local backyard dumps and bought antique furniture for his bedroom while he was still in grammar school. That eventually led him to become an Antique dealer, which he still is today. In 1976 Dennis acquired the two-story Victorian house that was built in 1895 by his great aunt and uncle who owned and operated the Franklin General Store in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. The house was located next to the store in Franklin, and Dennis moved it onto three acres of land on Bilby Road, about two blocks from its original site. That began his long project of restoring the house from the two unit apartment in which it had been converted, back to its original splendor with a large Victorian yard surrounding it. “This began my interest in preserving our local history,” Dennis tells us, “and it was at this time that I became a community activist in historic preservation.”



“In looking back on my community involvement, it gives me satisfaction that I have had a role in saving some of our local history that would otherwise have been lost. There is still much work to be done, so I continue to be an activist in historic preservation. Also in 1976, members of the Elk Grove community moved the Rhoads School into the Elk Grove Regional Park and began restoring so it could be used for a living history program in the Elk Grove Unified School District. With that began the formation of the Elk Grove Historical Society and Dennis became one of its founding members. Dennis tells us more: “Following the determination and leadership of Carl Amundson, we reconstructed the 1850 Elk Grove House and Stage Stop, moved the original San Joaquin Township Justice Court and Jail, moved the 1852 Foulks house (the oldest home in Sacramento County), moved the Reese School and constructed a replica of a blacksmith shop all into Heritage Park. For the last 43 years, I have been active in many fund raisers to finance these projects and their restorations.”

Dennis Buscher serves as the second Vice President of the Elk Grove Historical Society. His volunteer work continues as the City of Elk Grove and South Sacramento County areas continue to grow, Changes keep coming, and here is Dennis’ view of what is taking place at this time: “When the sewer plant was constructed in south Sacramento, it gave the signal that Sacramento planned its expansion to the south. With that, the developers began to buy land and plan housing tracts in the Franklin area. To provide community input in future development, the County of Sacramento created the Franklin/Laguna Community Planning Advisory Council in 1985. I was appointed to that council and served for about eight years. My goal was to help create a win-winwin situation for the County, the developers and the community. A win for the county to meet the

needs for the infrastructure and housing for the growing County, a win for the developers to invest in the community and a win for the community to make sure the growth was well planned and did not create a burden or destroy the lifestyle of our current residents. “With this planned growth began the demolition of many of our historical elements of early Elk Grove. I and others began to petition the City of Elk Grove for the need to save some of our history. So in 2007, the Elk Grove Historic Preservation Committee was formed to identify and review the historic resources in the City of Elk Grove and to advise the City Council on their future. I was appointed to be a member of that committee when it was formed and I am the only original member to still be on it 12 years later. It has been a long journey, but we have identified and evaluated over 160 potential historic resources. We hope to bring a list of about 80 resources before the City Council this year to be recognized as historically significant in Elk Grove. This will help preserve some of the rich history of Elk Grove. Some of our historic sites in Elk Grove are our cemeteries which date back to the 1860’s and 1870’s. “In 2012, I was appointed as a Board member to the Elk Grove-Cosumnes Cemetery District on which I still am a member. We are just about to begin the major renovation of the historic Franklin Cemetery that will combine the old section with the new section which will create one of the most beautiful, yet historic, cemeteries in the community. “In looking back on my community involvement, it gives me satisfaction that I have had a role in saving some of our local history that would otherwise have been lost. There is still much work to be done, so I continue to be an activist in historic

preservation. Since my retirement, I have invested in real estate, including a condo in Rosarito Beach, Baja California, Mexico. Maintaining the property and rental units has constantly kept me busy. In addition, I have been very active in collecting pictures, artifacts and stories of the local history. Genealogy has been fascinating – I have genealogy files of over 19,000 names that link most of the early families of Franklin, Pt. Pleasant and Elk Grove.” We are very grateful to Dennis Buscher for all that he has done, and that he continues to do, to help preserve our wonderful history. With trips to Mexico and ocean cruises, he still finds time to work on local history projects, and we thank him greatly for all that he does.


History Happened Here, Book 1 – River, Oaks, Gold Book 2 – Fields, Farms, Schools We the People, a Story of Internment in America

All book proceeds go for student scholarships. Make your check payable to Laguna Publishers and send to 9227 Lamprey Drove. Elk Grove CA 95624. Books are $20 apiece and California sales tax is included. Add $3 for shipping of one or two books; $5 for 3-6 books, and tell me who you want the books signed to. For more information call me at 916-685-0606 or email at You can also get the books at my web page,   65

Should you be worried about what the new tax law —a.k.a. the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—

means for your 2018 refund? The early reports from the Internal Revenue Service have been a mixed bag: In February, weekly data showed that the value of refunds, on average, was down compared to last year— by as much as 16.7%. But that trend seems to have shifted, with the latest stats (from the week of March 8), revealing that the average check was in-line with the 2017 tax year.

But even if you do end up with a smaller refund this year, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re paying more in taxes, says Jim Hooker of Jackson Hewitt Tax Service. The issue may actually relate to your withholdings. When new withholding tables were released in February 2018, many employers adjusted the amount that was being removed from workers’ paychecks—a change that left many Americans taking home more each pay period. The new tables are designed, in part, to encourage people to pay the proper amount in taxes throughout the year—a strategy that reduces refunds by design. (After all, when you get a refund, it essentially means you overpaid during the year. However, it is possible that your withholdings were actually reduced too much, leaving you facing an unexpected tax bill after you file for 2018. In that case, you’ll want to tweak the amount that’s being held back now, so you don’t face the same predicament next year. Your HR department should be able to help you make that change—consult with your tax pro if you need help identifying the right withholding strategy.

Of course, there are certain groups of taxpayers where the smaller (or non-existent) refund is not simply a matter of fine-tuning withholdings. In many of these cases, the likely culprits are the new rules about deductions, which eliminate many of the writeoffs taxpayers have been taking for years— and, in some cases, result in higher overall tax bills.

Sorry, singles The tax reform bill boosted the amount of the so-called standard deduction: It has jumped from $6,350 to $12,000 for single filers, and from $12,000 to $24,000 for married couples filing jointly. This reduced the advantages of itemizing deductions— i.e. listing expenses in order to reduce the amount of income that’s subject to taxation. In fact, the number of people who will file with itemized deductions this year is expected to plunge to 18 million, down from 46.5 million in 2017, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation. One of the largest groups impacted by this change are single filers who can’t claim a dependent. While some single taxpayers will benefit from the standard deduction boost, those who have historically opted to itemize will now have to find nearly twice as many expenses in order to make itemizing worth their while. Another change that makes that $12,000 threshold tougher to hit: The law now bans itemizing some costs—such as unreimbursed work-related expenses like gas—that taxpayers could previously rely on. Hooker believes that these changes will have more impact among single filers, since the standard deduction doesn’t reduce their taxable income as much when compared to those filing jointly. On the flip side, those who file jointly and have kids benefit greatly from an increase in the standard deductions, which doubled

to $24,000. Plus, there’s been in increase in the tax credit that parents earn, which grew from $1,000 to $2,000 per child.

Homeowners in high tax states lose out

Among the most controversial moves in new tax bill is the capping of how much state and local taxes filers can deduct. That change will have a particularly dramatic effect on higher income taxpayers in high tax states, says Ebel. Under the new rules, they can no longer deduct the cost of state taxes beyond $10,000 on their federal income statements. And the situation is even bleaker for those higher income taxpayers with expensive homes, since the new rules also cap how much mortgage interest one can deduct.

For those living in states without income taxes, like Florida or Texas, the rule changes aren’t as painful, no matter your income bracket.

Not too charitable to givers

One of the perks of giving to charity has long been the ability to do some good and then write off the donation on your taxes. But because the standard deduction moved higher, those who donate will have to give more in order to see the impact.

Under the previous rules, a filer who itemizes deductions, files jointly, and had $10,000 in expenses, plus $5,000 in donations, would have paid less in taxes by itemizing her expenses. But this year, that same person would instead take the standard deduction of $24,000—and the charitable gift would have no tax   67

Spring -A Time for New Beginnings

CLOSET FACTORY Written by Susie Franklin Roeser

Flowers blooming, baby animals being born, more hours of sunshine - all certain signs of spring. Another age-old tradition of the season? Spring cleaning! Out with the old, and in with the new. After spending the cold winter months bundling up and hunkering down, spring provides a welcome opportunity to clear out accumulated clutter and give your home a fresh start. You may be thinking to yourself, “Sure, sounds great… but it’s so much work! Maybe later…” Trying to get your home organized all by yourself can certainly seem overwhelming. The good news is you don’t have to do it alone! Did you know there is a local, family owned business right here in Elk Grove that has generations of experience helping people just like you plan, design, and build from scratch custom storage solutions to help your home function more effectively so you can spend less time cleaning and more time enjoying your home? Meet the Feist Family, owners of Feist Cabinets & Woodworks and The Closet Factory. For more than 30 years, this family has been crafting custom cabinetry for both homes and businesses in Elk Grove and its neighboring communities. What sets their business apart? “Helping people is our main goal.” says manager Barbara Feist. The way they meet this goal can clearly be seen at every stage of the projects they undertake. Stage one occurs when a home or business owner is overcome by a sense of frustration because the space they are in just isn’t working for them. When they contact the Feists, a knowledgeable designer will be assigned to help assess exactly what is important to 68. - Spring 2019

the client, and how they can maximize the use of the space they have—while also creating a look the client finds aesthetically pleasing. How does this happen? There are two ways to get the process started. Clients can come and visit The Closet Factory showroom located at 9930 Kent Street, Elk Grove. The showroom is open Monday through Friday from 8AM -5PM (and by appointment on Saturdays). The showroom allows clients a “hands on” experience helpful in visualizing how their current space can be made more “User Friendly.” A second option, for those who might find it difficult to picture their old space in a new way, is to call 916-686-4892 and make an appointment for a design consultant to come to the client’s home or business so they can see the client’s needs in person. The designer can then offer helpful suggestions based on their knowledge of organization and the scope of products available that would work in the specific space. Once an initial assessment of needs and space have been conducted, and measurements have been taken, clients are ready for stage two. This is where working with an experienced designer can be especially helpful. Designers can create a plan on paper/computer encompassing the clients

wants and needs, while giving them a visual of the completed project before they even begin. Think of stage two as the link between the past and future of the client’s space! This “paper plan” is then handed off to expert woodworkers who execute the designs from scratch in the Feist’s workshop, behind the showroom on Kent Street. When the sawdust settles, it’s time for stage three - “The Install”. No need to dig out your hammer or screwdrivers— The Closet Factory staff will arrive with everything needed (including plenty of experience) to put your brand-new custom cabinetry in place. Just one more way they help you accomplish the goal of moving from frustrating space to a beautiful place for you to embrace.

With a staff of 40 employees who are skilled in space planning, organization, design, woodworking, construction and installation, the Feist’s local franchise of The Closet Factory is fully equipped to help you give new life to your home or office space this Spring.



Have you ever been shopping at Costco, and on your way out noticed displays featuring “Home Improvement” businesses? One such display (that may have caught your eye) belongs to The Closet Factory. Even though The Closet Factory is a nationally known company, when Elk Grove residents request service they will be working directly with their neighbors, the Feists. Not only do customers receive personal, local service, they will also be supporting the economic stability of the Elk Grove community.

4 Benefits of Organization 1. Save time finding things 2. Save money - you won’t re-buy items you already have but can’t find

3. Save space by maximizing its potential 4. Save your sanity by being able to find what you want when you want, allowing you to be loving (instead of begrudging) the space in which you live. Don’t be misled by the name. The Closet Factory does far more than create organized closets. They have both the expertise and experience to add organization and style to any space for any purpose. Visit their website: and and be prepared to be inspired by just how beautiful a well-organized space can be!

What might your “Space” be trying to tell you this spring?

Not many of us speak the language of “Space”. For those of you not blessed with this talent, here are some helpful translations of what your “space” might be trying to tell you!

What you See

Shoes, boots, socks, gloves, and coats strewn across the hallway floor. Blue Ray boxes, remotes, video game controllers and cell phones precariously balanced on the arm or a couch or buried under a pile of mail on a coffee table. You have friends over for dinner and you can’t find that bottle of wine you were saving for a special occasion -or worse yet, your guests discover it is "past its prime" due to improper storage. Even though your pantry is packed from floor to ceiling you still hear the all too familiar phrase "There’s nothing to eat in this house!"


If you had a "Mud Room" there would be a place to put away these items so you wouldn’t trip over them. If you had a more functional entertainment center, maybe even one built into that oddsized wall cut out in the family room, you’d have a place to store those techie items that are currently just sitting around collecting dust. If you had a wine cellar especially designed for this purpose, you would know right where that bottle would be and could feel confident it had been properly stored for maximum enjoyment. Maybe it’s time to rethink how this space is being used! Just because your house "came with" a pantry doesn’t mean it has been set up in a way that fits your lifestyle.

Questions? Call the Closet Factory at 916-686-4892 or visit their office at 9930 Kent St, Elk Grove, CA 95624.   69


Design Elements of the

Southwest Style By Zina Sheya Designs

At the beginning of my interior design career, I was fortunate enough to practice in the culturally rich state of Arizona, where Southwest design was second nature to the backdrop of the Arizona landscape. Some of my most significant and memorable projects developed from the understanding of Southwest and Mexican design. Today, I am lucky enough to travel to Mexico both for design projects and for vacation, consequently, I wanted to share a few elements which exist in creating a home influenced by Southwest design. I am excited to share some photos from my most recent Mexican design journey within this article; I hope to share both the elements and the culture.


One of the most impactful elements in Southwest design is in the vibrant colors and textures. These are woven into not only the walls but also into the pottery, ornate furniture, and hand-woven rugs. The walls are often saturated in warm earthy tones of brick and clay, setting a rich (but neutral) backdrop for the rest of the vibrant colors this design style holds. Incorporating these earthy tones into a Venetian plaster techniques provides the result, and look, of a true adobe or authentic hand applied stucco and creates the most authentic look. 70. - Spring 2019


Bold color


By no surprise, the depth in the colors woven into Southwest design are vibrant—with an upfront and center expression of bold and bright colors combined. It is not unusual to find deep blues, golden yellows, vivid reds, and lush greens all woven together in one space. Patterns are bold and primitive prints are vital to bring this style to life.   71



Talavera Pottery is essential in Southwest design accents. Authentic Talavera is made in Pueblo Mexico, although it can be found in various other places. If you are creating a Southwest design style home, I would recommend incorporating (at a minimum) the Talavera Pottery into kitchen table settings and flower vases. Another area, where you can easily integrate the Talavera is in bathroom sinks. The other most common and fun way to incorporate Talavera is in entry floor tiles, shower tiles, kitchen backsplashes, laundry room floor tiles, and the house number plates. I am not a big fan of the exterior Talavera pottery (solely because I think it fights with the natural beauty and vibrant colors of the plants) but that is another area which Talavera can be incorporated. I believe there is a fine line between overdoing an accent and the balance of the accent, and this goes for any style of design. Too much of a good thing is a bad thing… Until next time, be inspired! For questions or design needs contact Zina Sheya Designs at

72. - Spring 2019


Elk Grove Antique Warehouse Honoring the History of Items Treasured

74. - Spring 2019

In 1984, Peggy Forseth-Andrews was living in Oregon when she met and married Elk Grove native Steve Andrews. Steve’s family had deep roots in the Elk Grove community because his Mother’s family moved to the area in 1917. Additionally, Steve’s parents had opened and owned Elk Grove Variety Store the “go to” five and dime store for many years in Old Town Elk Grove. With this family history, it was only natural when Peggy decided to go looking for a warehouse style building that she chose Old Town to open The Elk Grove Antique Warehouse. Peggy, along with her partners Dave & Kathy Hipskind, filled the 1200 building with a variety of treasures. The Elk Grove Antique Warehouse grew out of two distinct desires; to provide people with the opportunity to find affordable treasures and to make Peggy’s husband happy. “My husband really wanted his garages and outbuildings back… I had filled them to the brim.” With new items being added weekly, people can find affordable ready to go pieces—from glassware to furniture—as well as pieces that may need

some sweat equity. Small antique pieces are an affordable way to add unique accessories to your home. Some people are under the misconception that vintage or antique items are rickety or junk. In most cases the furniture is well made and made with solid wood. If you like the thrill of the hunt, this is the place for you. Often you will find visitors sharing stories, memories, or suggestions about items that are offered for sale.

With new items being added weekly, people can find affordable ready to go pieces. profile}


My love of antiques and collectables developed as a child. I have very fond memories of going shopping with my Mom or my Grandmother in antique stores, thrift stores, or to garage sales and the thrill of finding that special piece. I loved hearing the stories they shared about each item and the history behind them. Later, I spent hours researching either by speaking to people or reading books to develop knowledge about the items I collected. As a young adult, I furnished my apartment with found treasures that interested me; a WWII field radio as a side table, trunks for tables and vintage cameras or kitchen tools for decorations. There was no theme of recycle, reclaim, reuse in those days, and the word eclectic was never used. Like many others, I knew early on that surrounding myself with these items brought a unique vibe to my home and honored the history of the items I treasured. Believing in the importance of preserving Elk Grove’s history, Peggy quickly became involved in assisting the Elk Grove community in historical preservation when she arrived. “In my early days of living here (when Elk Grove was unincorporated Sacramento County) we were constantly advocating for preserving Old Town and our historical sites.” Involved in establishing Old Town as a Historic District, being a member of the original five people who worked to save the Old Grammar School (now CCSD headquarters) building, and later writing the application for the building to be established as a State Point of Historical Interest are just a few of the ways she has contributed to Elk Grove. Recently appointed as a member of the City’s Historic Preservation Committee, Peggy hopes to continue to help assure Elk Grove will never forget the importance of its roots. The Elk Grove Antique Warehouse is located across the parking lot from The Red Door at 9040 Elk Grove Blvd., Elk Grove. Hours are Saturday & Sundays 11:00am -3:00pm or by appointment. Managing the warehouse is Rick Andrews, who carries on the family tradition of being in business in Old Town. Located in the building that once housed the community’s fire trucks, visitors can experience a piece of Elk Grove history while searching for treasures.   75

real estate}

Something You Should Know Before Looking At A New Construction Model Home

Picture yourself out for a drive one weekend. You see a sign that says:

just want to take a look, and it’s not like they’re asking me to sign my life away.

New Construction Homes!

You get the bug. You fall in love. You picture yourself in this lifestyle. Next thing you know, you’re making an offer on the spot.

Models Starting At $XXX,XXX Next Right! Maybe you’re actively looking for a house, or maybe it’s just a spur of the moment urge, but you follow the signs to the model home. You park. You walk into the model home. The builder’s sales representative asks you to please sign in. You sign in. Ouch. You may have just made a costly mistake…

It’s Not Like I’m Buying One… Most people don’t think twice about signing in when they visit a model home. They figure, what’s the harm? It isn’t like I’m signing something to actually buy one. I 76. - Spring 2019

But sometimes you do end up buying one.

Or, maybe you leave, but you can’t stop thinking about it the whole ride home, so you decide you’re going to buy one. Either way, (if you decide to buy one) having signed in with the builder… you may have signed away your right to involve your own real estate agent to represent and advise you.

Others just don’t even think to bring their real estate agent with them or didn’t want to “bug” them to go see a house they could easily get in to see. They just stop in on a whim, and once the ball gets rolling, they feel like they can’t involve their agent, or they might even be “encouraged” by the builder not to. And they figure, what’s the big deal… the builder or their representative can handle everything. And some people feel like real estate agents just want to latch onto the deal to make a commission, while doing very little—since the builder and/or their representative can handle the paperwork and process.

It’s More Than Just “Finding” And Pushing Papers…

Is A Real Estate Agent Even Necessary?

Sure, a buyer can “find” a new construction house on their own. And a builder or their sales representative can certainly handle the paperwork.

Some people question whether it’s even necessary to have their own real estate agent involved in the purchase. They feel like they’re an unnecessary middleman. After all, the builder has a sales rep. They feel like they’ve “found” the house, not a real estate agent. The builder or their representative can handle the paperwork. And, ideally, not having an agent will perhaps give them some leverage to negotiate.

But the value of having a real estate agent on your side isn’t just about “finding” you a house (new construction or not) or filling in a few blanks on a contract and pushing the papers through the process. It’s about their knowledge, advice, and representation. Okay, some agents out there may just want to get a few papers signed and wait for the closing day to get a commission check. And yes, you’re probably

But the value of having a real estate agent on your side isn’t just about “finding” you a house or filling in a few blanks on a contract and pushing the papers through the process. It’s about their knowledge, advice, and representation. better off not involving an agent like that in the purchase of new construction. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t find and have an agent who truly understands new construction (and real estate) on your side.

A good agent can help you: · Avoid costly mistakes · Get everything you can—and should get—from the builder · Advise you as to whether buying a particular home is the best or right choice for you · Offer alternatives you may not have otherwise considered · Help you choose the best lot and model for your own enjoyment and future resale value · Keep the builder and building process in check · Advocate for you when issues arise with the builder

Things to Know and Look Out For There are quite a few things to know and look out for when buying new construction — more than I can cover in a brief article. So, give me a call and I'll help you through the new construction process, or any possible pitfalls. Do you have questions regarding real estate in general? Contact Justin Pinnell BRE- 02045095, M&M Real Estate at (916) 812.0576 or   77

save the date... Animal Adoption Event

Last Sunday of each month from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Petco, 7715 Laguna Blvd., Elk Grove. Elk Grove Animal Control has partnered with Petco to help find forever homes for shelter animals. For more information contact Animal Control: 916-687-3042

A Special Edition of Jazz/Blues Vespers

Dedicated to the memory of Judy Tafoya Sunday, May 5th starting at 6 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Express, 9175 W. Stockton Blvd., Elk Grove. Enjoy the gospel music of Triumphant Quartet and EGPC’s Virginia Ayers Dawson at a special Jazz & Blues Vespers event. Reserve your tickets now at or call (800) 965-9324. A portion of each ticket will benefit the EGPC Honduras Mission Project and the Judy Tafoya Scholarship Fund through Asian Resources, Inc. For more information contact Diane Sakakihara at 916.479.3578 or Nan Mahon at 916.806.9476

Journey Revisited

community} HAPPENINGS

Breakfast With The Bunny

April 20th from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. at the Elk Grove Regional Park Pavilion. 9950 Elk GroveFlorin Rd, Elk Grove. Start the day with a hearty pancake Breakfast with the Easter Bunny hosted by the Pride of Laguna Creek Lions Club. Don't forget to bring your camera! Each child will have the opportunity to visit with the Bunny. Pre-registration is encouraged as seating is limited. Ages 2 and up is $5 per person in advance and $7 at the door. All members of party must pay. You can also pre-register by phone at 916405-5600 or 916-405-5300, or in person at a CSD registration location. Learn more: https://www.

Franklin Friends Craft Faire

by Franklin Friends of the Library Saturday April 27th from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Franklin Community Library, 10055 Franklin High Road, Elk Grove.

Date Night

May 9th from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Laguna Town Hall, 3020 Renwick Ave, Elk Grove. Enjoy an evening in the beautiful Laguna Town Hall outdoor amphitheater with your significant other and/or friends to watch a movie on the big screen. This adults-only (age 18+) event is free and does not require registration. Don't forget to bring low-back chairs and a blanket. Pack your own picnic dinner or purchase dinner from food trucks on site. Seating will open at 6 p.m. with the movie starting at dusk.

The Franklin Friends Craft Faire will showcase unique, handcrafted jewelry, paper arts, ceramics, home decor, quilted, crocheted and knitted items, women's apparel, personal card products, four local authors and more. Baked goods and prize drawings too. All items for sale are HANDCRAFTED creations. Support ongoing library programs while shopping for yourself, family and friends. Free admission and plenty of free parking.

“The Best Journey Tribute in the Country” Saturday, April 20th, 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Hutchins Street Square, 125 S Hutchins St., Lodi. Journey Revisited is hailed as “The Best Journey Tribute in the Country”. Replicating the sounds that put Journey on the path to super stardom, master vocalists Frank House and Kevin Jachetta bring their biggest hits to life in this spectacular live concert with stunning detail. From “Don’t Stop Believin'" and “Wheel in the Sky” to “Any Way You Want It”, “Lights” and so many more mega hits that rocked the world for decades, and still do to this day. Journey Revisited delivers their heart-pounding rock and roll hits, those smooth rock ballads, and those over the top timeless classics without pre-recorded backing tracks or digital vocal enhancements like others tributes you may have seen. This is your chance to see how it’s supposed to be done. Come see the most organic live high-energy Journey sound available on the market today. Bring your friends and family, dance in your seat, sing the hits along with them, it will be a night to remember forever! Call 209-333-5550 for more information. 78. - Spring 2019

Relay For Life

Cosumnes River Communities Saturday, May 18th and 19th from 10 a.m. to 10 a.m. at Harriet Eddy Middle School, 9329 Soaring Oaks Dr., Elk Grove.

Bike and Bite

Wednesday May 1st from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Old Town Plaza, 9615 Railroad Street, Elk Grove. Ride your bike to the monthly Food Truck Mania event and receive a $2 coupon to enjoy some tasty, discounted bites. The first 100 people to come on 2 wheels can pick up a coupon when they valet their bike with the Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates (SABA). Then, grab some food, and check out the May is Bike Month Energizer Station. Admission is absolutely free and open to all ages.

Join a team before the event or come out on the event day to celebrate survivors and support the fight against cancer. At Relay For Life no donation is too small, each and every dollar counts. Your donations help fund groundbreaking cancer research, patient care programs, and can make a difference in communities like ours. With every donation, you are helping the American Cancer Society save lives. At Relay For Life events, no one faces cancer alone. We come together every year at more than 2,500 Relay events around the country to support and celebrate survivors and caregivers. Contact Marie Maeller for more information at or call 209-524-7242.

community} HAPPENINGS Cost is $30 per twosome. Twosome must consist of one child between the age of 7-12 and one adult with a valid driver's license to drive the golf cart. Register online or by phone at 916-4055600 or 916-405-5300, or in person at a CSD registration location. Resident registration begins December 12, while non-resident registration begins December 26.

Elk Grove Western Festival

Sunday May 19th from 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. at the Emerald Lakes Golf Course, 10651 E Stockton Blvd, Elk Grove.

Keep’n it Country May 3th, 4th and 5th starting at 10:00 a.m. at the Elk Grove Park, 9950 Elk Grove-Florin Road, Elk Grove.

Calling all mothers and sons! The CSD is hosting the 3rd annual Mother Son Wacky Golf Tournament this spring! Not a golfer? Not a problem! This isn’t your ordinary golf tournament. Leave your golf clubs at home because we will provide the equipment. You'll make your way down the fairway with tennis racquets, baseballs, Frisbees and other sports equipment. More than one son? Bring Grandma, Aunt, Mom’s best friend, or another female over 18 to complete your team.

The 62nd annual Elk Grove Western Festival celebrating this year’s theme Keep’n it Country. Join us for a weekend filled with fun and excitement and help us celebrate the 5th annual Elk Grove Western Festival & BBQ Championship brought to Elk Grove courtesy of the Kansas City BBQ Society (KCBS). The Carnival starts things off Friday night, and the festivities continue with the Western Festival Parade on Saturday morning at 10:00 a.m. The Parade starts on City of Elk Grove and Auto Mall and ends at the Elk Grove Park.

Mother Son Wacky Golf

Big Truck Day

Wednesday May 22nd from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Laguna Reserve Market Place, 10044 Bruceville Road, Elk Grove. Free Admission Celebrate National Public Works Week with the City of Elk Grove at Big Truck Day. Honk the horn on the bus, get behind the wheel of a semi-truck, build a castle in the sand, play with giant bubbles and learn about all of the vehicles involved in maintaining a city at this free event geared to kids 2-6.

Senior Day in the Park

May 29th 9:00 a.m. at Beeman Park, 8830 Sharkey Ave., Elk Grove. Stroll among the over 40 booths, talk to vendors and learn about the array of services available to you as a senior in Elk Grove. Watch the Senior Center’s own Tai Chi, Aerobics and Zumba participants show you how fun and vibrant our classes are. Learn how to defend yourself at the “Cane-Fu” demonstration. Get your blood pressure and bone density checked, learn about free phones and other devices available to seniors. Call the Senior Center of Elk Grove for more information 916-685-3160

community} HAPPENINGS Family Movie in the Park

Friday, June 7th from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Elk Grove Park, Near Rotary Grove, 9950 Elk Grove Florin Rd, Elk Grove. Movie in the Park is a perfect chance to relax and enjoy a safe evening under the stars. Come early and get a good seat. Bring a blanket, low back chairs, family, neighbors, and friends for the free movie which will begin at dusk. A variety of food trucks will be in the park selling delicious treats beginning at 6:30 p.m. The CSD will offer inflatables for a minimal fee per child (CASH ONLY), beginning at 6:30 p.m. until the movie starts at dusk (around 8:30 pm). Visit for more information

Regional Safety Day

Saturday June 8th from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Elk Grove Regional Park, 9950 Elk Grove-Florin Rd., Elk Grove. Free admission Regional Safety Day (RSD) is an event hosted by the Elk Grove Police Department (EGPD) and the Cosumnes Fire Department (CFD). The purpose of the event is to introduce and reinforce safety to area families in a fun and educational environment. Several safety-oriented organizations from throughout the region (SSD, CHP, Stop the Bleed, PG&E, CERT, USCG and several others) will be invited, at no charge, each to demonstrate their own area of expertise. The event will feature tents, displays, and vehicles from participating organizations, as well as live demonstrations throughout the day. There will also be food trucks on site.


Saturday, April 27th from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Elk Grove Regional Park, 9950 Elk Grove Florin Road, Elk Grove. Stroll through the Fitness Festival and visit the many healthy vendors on site, enjoy all-day stage entertainment, have lunch on site with a picnic or grab something from our food vendors, and check out the free kid’s zone featuring a 200 foot zipline, climbing rock wall, mini-obstacle course, inflatable jousting, several bounce houses and more! Join the Movement and come out to Fitfest! For more information visit www.

Elk Grove Gauntlet

Saturday, April 27th 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Elk Grove Regional Park, 9950 Elk Grove-Florin Road, Elk Grove. The City of Elk Grove has thrown down the gauntlet! Join the Elk Grove movement toward healthier living at this one-day fitness challenge and competition taking place at Fitfest inside Elk Grove Regional Park. Teams of two (male division or female division) will compete in three different competition levels to determine who's fit to take home the title. Open to men and women, Scaled (novice), Rx (Open), and Masters (40+). You must be 18 or over to participate. More specific information on the workouts will be released closer to the event. Registration includes a commemorative Gauntlet shirt. $100 per team of two (male division or female division) 82. - Spring 2019

$8 per golfer

check out our website for 20% off birthday party packages! hours of operation*

3443 laguna blvd #130 elk grove, ca 95758 | 916-562-3900 *business hours can vary