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Ardent content featured 18. GRACE LIN 46. SHELTER PUPS 76. NEIL NAYYAR

love Story






74. NAMES Elizabeth Pinkerton



20. BOOK REVIEWS Sacramento Public Library

74... 6. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

80. A NANNOSECOND in Art and Music 80. DATEBOOK

contents profile



60. WOMEN’S HEALTH Kaiser Permanente 62. COLD AND FLU Elk Grove Vitamins 64. FUNCTIONAL VS. CONVENTIONAL MEDICINE Rejuvenation Wellness 68. STRESS & CHRONIC PAIN


non-profit 48. PET FOOD PANTRY

education 16. WHAT I’VE LEARNED CT Morris 54. REAL ESTATE Justin Pinnell 56. INSURANCE Stephen Baker 70. REFORM QUESTIONS Jim Hooker

Community 24. LITERARY GROUP Martin Luther King, Jr. Library 66. LAUNCH PARTY Isagenix 78. ARTIST EXHIBITS Elk Grove Fine Arts Center 8. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018


Contributor’s Corner Stacy Antonopoulos

Stacy is a mom, teacher, and photographer who spends her time living, exploring, and working in Elk Grove.

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.

Tonya Gonzales

Tonya an inspiring nutrition educator, energetic fitness coach and passionate public speaker on a variety of relevant health and wellness topics!

Dr. Dayle A. Imperato

A Board Certified physician, she has served the Sacramento community for the past 20 years. Owner of Rejuvenation Medical Spa 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.

Lynn Martin

Photographer and Owner of Elk Grove Photography

Cindy Della Monica

Cheesemonger and Owner of Cheese Central in Lodi, Ca.

Carole Morris

Instructional Specialist, Author and Adjunct Professor. The proud mom of two perfect children and grammie to three flawless grandchildren.

Kristyn Nelson

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

Barrie Olmstead

Adult Materials Selector at Sacramento Public Library.

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.

Bruce Robinson

Owner and photographer at Bruce Robinson Photography.

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.

Chris Tanaka

Owner/Senior Instructor of Sher Khan Karate. He is a 5th Degree Black Belt in American Kenpo Karate.

For full bios of our contributors, please visit www.ardentforlife.net.

10. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

subscribe and find us at www . ardentforlife . net

Community Corner...



What pet do you currently have? If you could have any pet, what would it be?


Stacy Antonopoulos Stacy Antonopoulos Photography

As the owner of two cats, I am paving the way to my status of crazy cat lady. I love how independent and inquisitive cats are. Our cats, Lily and Linus, neither of whom wished to be photographed, are as different as can be. Lily is very low maintenance, while Linus is in constant need of attention. They are an excellent pair, however, and I wouldn't have it any other way; except, maybe if I could have a perpetual kitten. If I could have any pet, that's what I'd like. Photo credit goes to my ten year old, Anthony Antonopoulos.

David Hipskind

The Red Door Antiques, Vintage & More

Meet Lucy. She is a six year old English springer spaniel. She has a very gentle, happy personality; loves people, other animals and especially children. Springers are often given the nick name "Velcro Dogs” because they love to be stuck to their human companions.

Lynn Martin Elk Grove Photography

Muffin has been a part of our family for over twelve years! She is the most loving Maltese/Bichon Frise you will ever meet. Muffin loves long walks, playing fetch, and feeling the breeze on her face during car rides. We sometimes call her “Nana” after the dog from Peter Pan, because she is like a little nanny to our two children – snuggling and playing with them since they were born. Muffin brings so much joy and warmth to our home – she is very loved! 12. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

We actually consider Lucy our "fur baby". Weather permitting, she goes everywhere we do. She loves to ride in the car. She especially loves it when we take the trailer and go camping; because she knows it means she will be able to get out, run and explore. Most days, you can find her behind the counter at the Red Door Antiques. She is our "Official" store greeter—although most of the time she lays quietly on her bed sleeping. Most people are unaware that she is even there. However, if you own an animal, or come in with your kids, she pops up like a jack-in-the-box. She can always tell an animal lover when she smells one. And she really loves the kids. I always joke that her little stubby tail is going to fall off from wagging with excitement. She is perfectly happy to lay behind the counter and sleep all day, as long as she can see me. But, come 5:00 p.m., she knows it's time to go home and she’s charged up like the energizer bunny. She knows it's time to play and run. If I ignore her and don't play with her, she sits at my feet and barks until I have to give in and go play with her. If you could have any pet, what would it be?

That's a hard one since Lucy is our 4th Springer Spaniel. They are so friendly and love being with their families, it makes it difficult to decide on any other kind of animal. But, if I had to choose—I think I'd choose a horse. They are strong, graceful and majestic.

Maureen Lampl

Elk Grove Police Department Supervisor- Animal Control Unit

Bailey (shown in the photo) is one of four dogs that are a part of my family. Bailey is a prima donna, so she had to be in the picture. My other dogs are a chocolate Labrador retriever named Mandy, a long hair toy Chihuahua named Cheeto (he loves the ladies and knows how to work the room), and a Shih Tzu named Mickey. I also have a cat named Capone who runs the show at my house. He keeps all the dogs in line and demands the bathroom sink be turned on at his request. The pet I would like to have is a tea cup pig. After watching the Chase bank commercial (that has the couple walking their pig around) I knew I wanted one. And yes he/she would have their own theme music playing while they walked.

Dayle Imperato Rejuvenation Wellness and Aesthetic Medicine

My pet family consists of a Jack Russell Terrier, Cairn Terrier/Poodle Mix and a Shih Tzu (each around 17 pounds) and one Anatolian Shepherd, weighing in at 110. I got her (the Anatolia Shepherd) three years ago because I was having problems with coyotes. They are guard dogs originally from Turkey. Though I have had no problems with coyotes since I got her, this breed is very independent and I would not recommend them unless one has time for on-going training. ardentforlife.net   13

On the Cover

“You can find magic

wherever you look. Sit back and relax, all you need is a book.” -Dr. Seuss-


Zoe Antonopoulos


Stacy Antonopoulos stacyantonopoulos.com

creative director

executive editor

business manager




Sara Pinnell

Carole Morris

art & production


Justin Pinnell



View Ardent for Life online at WWW.ARDENTFORLIFE.NET

Copyright © 2018 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 facebook.com/ardentforlifeelkgrove 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 info@mrsandmrpublishing.com Interested in increasing your business and partnering with Ardent For Life? Check out www.ardentforlife.net. 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 February, as a month, has a lot going for it. It’s a short month, for those of you wishing your winter away. Also, let’s not forget Groundhog Day happens this month. The first Groundhog Day, which featured a rodent meteorologist, happened back in 1887. According to tradition, if a groundhog comes out of its hole (and sees its shadow) there will be six more weeks of winter weather; no shadow means an early spring. Our winters here in Northern California are mild, so the groundhog seeing its shadow really isn’t a big deal. In fact, we can handle six more weeks of winter. Now, in the Russian village of Oymyakon, where the temperature fell to -79.6 degrees Fahrenheit this winter, I’m pretty sure they don’t want to see the shadow of a groundhog. Another exciting happening this month, Valentine’s Day—a day of love, laughter, flowers and candy. Make the dinner reservations, and take a moment to savor our newest issue of Ardent for Life. executive editor

Carole Morris What did we learn after reading this issue? We have an article about Grace Lin (the amazingly creative author of over a dozen children’s books) who will be visiting Sacramento. Students from local schools will be bussed to the Central Library in Sacramento to hear from Grace Lin. Grace is the talented author of “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” which was awarded the 2010 Newbery Honor, and chosen for Al Roker's Today Show Kid's Book Club—in addition to being a New York Times Bestseller. Read about the road to Grace’s success, as an author and illustrator. Did you know Elk Grove has its own musical record setter? At 12 years of age, Neil Nayyar holds the Assist World Records Research Foundation’s title for the youngest person to play the most different musical instruments. Currently, Neil plays 44 different instruments. Read all about this amazing young man in this issue of our magazine.


16 16. . ardentforlife.net ardentforlife.net--winter winter 2018 2018


Libraries Have Taught Me What

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

I’ve seen images of libraries that are spooky and truly unnerving. Hometown libraries—that have ghostly female apparitions (wearing bonnets) who talk to people, then mysteriously disappear. Ghosts who roam the hallways of numerous libraries, then pass through walls and vanish. However, the truly alarming picture that I saw was the image of a library with a ghost (dressed in 18th century clothing), who was pulling books off shelves and leaving them in piles on a table. This image went way too far on the scare meter. We have all been trained, from toddlerhood, that when you take a book off the shelf in a library you put it back where you found it! What was this ghost thinking? How demented and depraved this apparition must be.

dysfunctional family, my unhappiness at school, and all of my disillusionments faded away. If allowed, I would have stayed there forever in my safe haven. Now, I’m a teacher… and I take my class of 24 children to the library. Many of them have the same unhappiness in their lives that I had as a child. Their lives are shallow and lack luster—they don’t have anything to stimulate their imagination or creativity. We know that reading enriches a child’s developing mind and stimulates their imagination. In addition, young readers learn skills like phonemic awareness, phonics, comprehension and fluency. Reading, for children and adults, is a win-win situation.

Thankfully, the libraries in our area don’t go by the “children should be seen and not heard” rule. If you have gone to any of the Elk Grove Libraries, you We all know that libraries typically have a sign that know that their librarians are friendly… and actually says, “Rules of Conduct”. Under the heading there is a lengthy list of what not to do in a library. When I was a smile when you walk through their door. They have child, I purposely didn’t read the list so that I wasn’t held baby story times, toddler story times, a homework accountable. On every visit, the dreaded librarian was zone for older children, and one-on-one technology seated close to “the sign”. She or he was an individual whose demeanor resembled the bad witch on the help for everyone. In fact, there are fun programs Wizard of Oz. The sullen, angry librarian always made happening in the libraries all the time! sure you put that book back where you found it.

Even though, as a child, I wasn’t a rule follower—I loved going to the library. I would walk through the doors and breathe deep… the glorious smell of old leather bindings, and paperback novels. To me, nothing was as soothing as the smell of books. I would sit on the library floor for hours, and escape into the novel that I was reading. My

What I’ve learned about libraries? I’ve learned that they have come a long way. Today, they are user friendly for both adults and children. They aren’t solemn, gloomy institutions that strive to keep individuals out—who don’t fit into a mold. Best of all, they still have that wonderful aroma in the air that I remember from my childhood. ardentforlife.net ardentforlife.net   17 17


Grace Lin Inspiring our Children Written by Carole Morris

Exciting news! Grace Lin (the amazingly creative author of over a dozen children’s books) will be visiting Sacramento. She is collaborating with Words Take Wing, a partnership to bring expansive literature opportunities to local youth between UC Davis School of Education and its partners, Sutter Health/Sutter Children’s Hospital, Sacramento, and Sacramento Public Library. We are all aware of the fact that all children need opportunities to experience literature. For this year’s program, students from local schools will be bussed to the Central Library in Sacramento to hear from Grace Lin, on Tuesday, Feb. 27 at 7 p.m. 18. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Grace Lin is the talented author of “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” which was awarded the 2010 Newbery Honor, and chosen for Al Roker's Today Show Kid's Book Club—in addition to being a New York Times Bestseller. Additionally, Grace's early reader “Ling & Ting” was awarded with the Theodor Geisel Honor, in 2011. The road to Grace’s success, as an author and illustrator, is inspiring for all children who are endeavoring to follow their dreams.

Before Grace Lin was an award-winning and New York Times bestselling author and illustrator, she was the only Asian girl (except for her sisters) going to her elementary school in Upstate New York. That experience (good and bad) influenced her books. While growing up, Grace’s sisters became scientists, and she became an artist. However, being an artist was not Grace's first choice. She first dreamed of being a champion ice skater, and drew many pictures of herself twirling and dancing on the ice. Unfortunately, Grace had neither the talent nor coordination to make it to skating stardom. However, the pictures she drew of herself held much promise and quickly became Grace's career focus.


After attending the Rhode Island School of Design, Grace quickly set out to achieve her dream of creating children's books. Her first book, “The Ugly Vegetables”, was published in 1999, and was quickly heralded. As well as being an American Booksellers Association's "Pick of the List" and a Bank's Street College Best Books of the Year, “The Ugly Vegetables” was nominated for the California Young Reader Children's Choice Award and named a Growing Good Kids Book Award Classic. I am proud to say that in the elementary school where I teach, “The Ugly Vegetable” is part of our curriculum. I love this book! Grace followed that success with the publication of over a dozen more books, including “Dim Sum for Everyone!” and “Lissy's Friends”. Grace's first children's novel, “The Year of the Dog” was released to glowing praise in 2006, and nominated to the TX Bluebonnet list, next she wrote “The Year Of The Rat”.

As well as occasionally reviewing for the NY Times, Grace has become an advocate for diversity. She is a commentator for New England Public Radio and created the video essay, “What to do when you realize classic books from your childhood are racist?" for PBS New Hour. Grace also delivered the popular TEDx talk, "The Windows and Mirrors of Your Child's Bookshelf". Grace truly believes, "Books erase bias, they make the uncommon every day, and the mundane exotic. A book makes all cultures universal."

In fact, the cover illustration for her novel “When the Sea Turned to Silver” (a 2016 National Book Award Finalist) was displayed at the White House! Grace, and was recognized by President Obama’s office as a Champion of Change for Asian American and Pacific Islander Art and Storytelling. Presently, Grace lives in Florence, MA with her husband and daughter. Please visit her website: www.gracelin.com for more info.



WAS THERE A PARTICULAR AUTHOR OR BOOK THAT INSPIRED YOU TO START WRITING? I had many favorite authors and books as a child, but there wasn’t a specific book or author that inspired me. Honestly, what made me want to become an author and illustrator was when I entered a book contest in 6th or 7th grade—a big national contest where the winner got their book actually published. I did not win 1st place (so my book was not published) but I did win 4th place. And with 4th place came the prize of $1000! It was then that I realized that one could earn money making books, that is could be a job, and I knew that was what I wanted to do. WHAT KIND OF BOOKS DO YOU ENJOY READING? I read children’s books and I refuse to be ashamed of it. Once in a while, I’ll read an adult book, but I really love children’s books. I think we, as a society, make the mistake of thinking that darkness is deep and sincerity is foolish and tend disdain children’s books with those beliefs. But, if we all read more children’s books, I think we would be better off.

WHAT HAVE YOU EDITED OUT OF YOUR BOOKS, AND WHY? Oh, I think every author has edited out lines and phrases that they love. Many times it will be a metaphor or simile that is just so lovely as language but really does nothing but slow the story down. We are writing to create a story, not make pretty-sounding sentences—not that you can’t have beautiful language, of course. It’s just finding the balance between selfindulgence and art. This is especially important in children’s books, where you want the readers to discover the magic of words but can’t afford to lose their patience. HOW DO YOU CREATE THE CHARACTERS FOR YOUR BOOKS? I tend to use people that I know; sometimes I mix and match traits. Even if I am writing about a dragon, I give it the personality of someone I know!

ardentforlife.net   19

Reviews brought to you by the

art} BOOKS

Coming to My Senses: The Making of a Counterculture Cook

By: Alice Waters Book Reviews by BARRIE OLMSTEAD Alice Waters, who opened the famed Chez Panisse Restaurant and Café in Berkeley in 1971 at the age of 27, reveals the circuitous, sensual path she took to get to that pivotal moment. Born in Chatham, N.J., her aesthetic awakening began when her family moved to California, where she became inspired by the free speech movement in Berkeley and a junior year abroad in Paris. She came to appreciate the French traditions at the table, and her culinary experience there centered on fresh, seasonal food, cheeses for dessert, little lettuces, unpretentious wine and ambience. She found the simplicity of locally sourced food and a prix fixe menu lacking in the restaurants back home. She rallied her group of friends in Berkeley, consisting of artists, cinephiles, graphic designers, cheesemongers, musicians, and activists to help get her vision for this neighborhood bistro off the ground. Woven throughout the story are liaisons with various lovers, travels, and friendships born of shared passions. Although readers who are hoping for tales of restaurant shenanigans and the epic reign of chef Jeremiah Tower in the 1970’s should look elsewhere, this is a memoir that is sure to ignite the senses. Little, Brown and Company, 2017

The Wine Lover’s Daughter: A Memoir

By: Anne Fadiman Farrar   Anne Fadiman, author of the acclaimed The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, writes a loving memoir of her father, Clifton Fadiman, who was not only an oenophile but a renowned literary critic. Relying on her own recollections, as well as her father’s essays, tasting notes, letters and interviews, Fadiman constructs the life of a man who fell in love with wine. Clifton cultivated a taste for wine not only for its history and gustatory delights but for the desire to seem, and be, more refined. Having grown up Jewish in Brooklyn, Clifton sought escape from what he saw as the “meatball” life, longing for foie gras instead. He also strove to gain entry into an elite WASP literary world. He accomplished a great deal, becoming the editor-in-chief at Simon & Schuster before the age of 30, as well as the head of the book review section at the New Yorker. Despite his many accolades and successes he still felt like a pretender and his lifelong cachet with wine provided a sense of stability and prestige, even leading to the publication of The Joys of Wine in 1975. Fadiman’s memories of her father are heartfelt and her writing is, as always, lyrical and deeply touching. Straus and Giroux, 2017

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art} BOOKS

Flashlight Night

Author: Matt Forrest Esenwine Illustrations by: Fred Kohler


Author: Marie Lu Emika Chen lives a hardscrabble life in a futuristic New York City. At 18 years old, she has no family, is days away from eviction, cannot find work due to a juvenile criminal record, and has resorted to scraping together a living by collecting bounties on those who illegally bet on the world’s most popular virtual reality game, Warcross. When she decides to hack the international event of a Warcross tournament in a desperate attempt to earn some rent money, she accidentally glitches into the game in front of millions of fans, and immediately becomes a media sensation. The young creator of Warcross, intrigued by her apparent hacking skill, flies her to Tokyo and secretly recruits her to track down an even larger, more sinister threat to the game’s security. As she is thrown in the glamour and celebrity of highstakes Warcross, she also sinks deeper into the dangerous underworld of the virtual-reality internet and uncovers horrifying implications that reach far beyond the game. This new series by the author of the Legend and Young Elites books has everything a YA reader would want: layered characters, tight plotting, quick-burning romance, and plenty of action. While the book is sure hit for gamers, it also has plenty to offer for those who have never picked up a game controller but are looking for a suspenseful, fast-paced thriller. Recommended for ages 13 and up. G.B. Putnam’s Sons, 2017

Children's Book Reviews By JUSTIN AZEVEDO Three young children bring a flashlight to their sleepover in the backyard treehouse, and in the beam of its light the mundane becomes fantastical. As a young storyteller relates their adventures through lyrical rhymes, the flashlight subtly transforms backyard trees into dark forests, porches into Egyptian temples, swimming pools into pirate-infested oceans, and animals both real and stuffed into fearsome creatures. As the tale swings back to the treehouse, piles of classic children’s books in the background reveal the inspiration for their quest. The pencil and digital color artwork in this picture book is an absolute joy, as gloomy night melts into subdued color wherever the arc of the flashlight lands, revealing clever details born from the kids’ imaginations that demand multiple readings. As engaging and playful as the artwork is, Esenwine’s gentle, sweeping prose still makes for a comforting read-aloud at bedtime, after which kids can dream up their own backyard adventures. Recommended for ages 5-8. Boyd Mills Press, 2017

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

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community} HAPPENINGS

Literary Group 25TH ANNIVERSARY

On Saturday, Jan. 13, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library Literary Group celebrated its 25th anniversary. The group began in the fall of 1993, with Toni Morrison’s “The Bluest Eye” and has since read more than 200 books by and about African Americans. “The community came to me to start the club,” explained former librarian Patricia Sandefur. “There were no other clubs at the time, and together we were able to get it started.”

That community included retired literature professor Jean Harris. In 1993, Harris shared with the Sacramento Bee that the mission of the group “was to build bridges and open dialogue in an area that desperately needs both.” When asked how the group has stood the test of time, Sandefur offered that it’s because of the black community’s desire to stay connected—despite the challenges they often face.   The group’s next selection is “The Underground Railroad” by Colson Whitehead. The group is open to everyone. To join, please call Sacramento Public Library at (916) 264-2920.

“Together, we were able to get the book club started … and it has stood the test of time because of our desire to maintain a connection to our community.” – Patricia Sandefur, former librarian and a founding member of the book club. 24. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018


After being a hairstylist since 1978, Jackie decided to retire in 2013. After retiring, she began volunteering at The American Cancer Society’s free wig program. The American Cancer Society is a resource that provides free wigs for adult women who are suffering from hair loss due to cancer treatments. Jackie began selling a full line of hair loss accessories including wigs, toppers and hats. After some time, clients began asking about toppers. Therefore, Jackie quickly began doing some research to discover what toppers were all about. Jackie learned some important and exciting facts regarding the difference between toppers and wigs. One of the main differences was the fact that toppers are blended and clipped into your own hair. Another important detail...toppers save time and take minimal care; allowing a client to explore fashion with alternative hairstyles. Soon toppers began out-selling wigs. Jackie began wearing toppers in 2013, and never goes out without one. Whether your hair-loss is medically induced or you just want to have more volume and look fantastic, a topper or wig could be for you.

Consultations at Jacquelyns last between 30-60 minutes where you will be measured and discuss a style and color for your individual needs. Most clients leave with their fitted and styled topper or wig. For a consultation appointment please call Jackie at (916)764-2648. Jacquelyn’s motto has always been “You’re not fully dressed until you are wearing a smile”. When you enter her salon, your face, hands, feet, hair and personal style will inspire her staff of professionals to enhance the beauty that is uniquely yours. At Jacquelyn’s they are passionate about their craft.

“Hair Angel” is a name close to Jacquelyn’s heart, since she has helped so many going through chemo. A client talking to Jackie’s daughter, Heidi, in the salon one day gave Jackie that name; and her daughter replied, “Yes, she is My Hair Angel too”. Because, in the fall of 2016, Heidi was diagnosed with Breast Cancer and this is where Jackie had the opportunity to help Heidi first hand. Heidi was told she would lose her hair with her chemotherapy treatments.

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Heidi said to her one day “Mom this is why you started to work with wigs, so you would have the knowledge when you were needed to help me.” Jackie had learned that every client who is going through chemo hair loss has their own personal time and way to have their “chemo shave”. Heidi, who was living in Dixon with her family, called one afternoon about a week or two after her first chemo treatment asking if Jackie would cut her hair (which was thick and long at that time). Heidi came over that evening and Jackie took some length off of her hair, which took the weight off her scalp.


Life isn’t perfect but your hair can be!

Heidi decided to have a “shave down party” like she used to have when she was on the swim team. Candid photos were taken, as they celebrated the life changing event with homemade pizza and cake.

During this journey, Heidi had a break between treatments and her hair grew about a quarter of an inch. She decided she would like to try a Topper. Heidi looked amazing with dark curly long hair. However, she choose blond and wore it beautifully (always with a smile). Heidi’s last day of chemo was March 23, 2017. “We are so proud of Heidi, and glad we let her do it her way.” Jackie asserted. “At Jacquelyn’s family is one of life’s greatest blessings, and we are thankful for all our clients who have been coming to Jacquelyn’s since the late 70’s. These clients are part of our family. When you become part of our family, you are gaining access to the latest in hair, nail, skin, hands, feet, wig and Topper fashion. Jacquelyn’s is committed to supporting their extended families in good times, and bad, lifting each other up with a SMILE.”

Jackie believes, “A smile after each client assures me that I have done my best in making a difference!” JACQUELYN'S SALON OF ELK GROVE SALON, WIGS, BEAUTY SUPPLIES AND GIFT BOUTIQUE 2475 ELK GROVE BLVD. SUITE 120 ELK GROVE, CA 95758 916-647-9302 SALON 916-764-2648 JACKIES CELL email: jacquelynssalon@yahoo.com website: www.jacquelynssalon.com facebook: Jacquelyn’s Salon of Elk Grove

From top left to right: Heidi’s shave down party, blonde Topper, wig, and Heidi’s natural hair today.

ardentforlife.net   27


Kitchen Design Trends The INS & OUTS of 2018 By Zina Sheya Designs

Photo by SOLLiD Cabinetry

HERRINGBONE IS HOT Who doesn’t love herringbone? In 2018, you will see it rise front and center‌subway tiles installed in kitchen and bathrooms in herringbone patterns. In addition to wood floors and tile in herringbone patterns. 28. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018


DEDICATED FOODIE COUNTERS Another trend we will see in kitchens this year, is dedicated baking and chopping areas. The trend of farm to fork, fresh prepared meals which require chopping, mixing and other chef moves‌ require space and a lower counter area. Sometimes a taller cabinets are in order, for dedicated baking and chopping stations

Photo by SOLLiD Cabinetry

MILLWORK FEATURE WALLS Thanks to Joanna Gaines, shiplap is hot for accents walls. We will see a rise in millwork panels and reclaimed wood boards. We have already seen, and will continue to see, the big box stores jumping in and offering more economical materials for these walls.

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32. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Sheen, Texture and Metal combinations are hot. Mixing shiny brass with black matt metal, or shiny black metal (with a honed or leathered countertop) and matte tile or subway tiles. Mixing materials, sizes and shapes is the trend this year.


COLORFUL KITCHENS WILL BE BIG IN 2018 There is a shift from the trend of all white kitchens to a more colorful route. Although all white kitchens remain a classic timeless choice, we will see an increase of color in the kitchen designs—from cabinetry to sink materials. There will be bolder choices, such as charcoal and sage tones, and a little modern and traditional mix. Also, the addition of reclaimed wood on islands and kitchen accent walls. Don’t get me wrong if you love white kitchens… just add a darker island or a custom stove hood. You will see a shift, in regarding to sinks, from the standard stainless steel and white sinks—to more colorful choices such as concrete, travertine, copper and granite.

FISH-SCALE AND PATTERN BACKSPLASH In 2018, we will see more patterns for backsplashes in the kitchen. Moving away, just a little, from the classic simple subway tiles. Don’t worry—subway tiles are not out, we will see many more colors, sizes, texture, and sheen with subways. The installation of them is in more patterns like herringbone instead of the traditional offset brick. We will see fish-scale and scalloped pattern tiles, which offer more movement (and work with most kitchen styles).

INTEGRATED APPLIANCES Tired of those stainless steel appliances? 2018 has you covered, built in appliances and unique accent paneling make them stand alone in style to fit any space.

COLORS ARE GOING RICH & WARM Greys are still hot, but they are moving towards the warm tones instead of the cool tones. Earthy tones like camel, tobacco, and brown-black tones are surfacing. They pair well with the wood feature walls, which are also trending. All photos on page 32 and 33 provided by SOLLiD Cabinetry. You can purchase SOLLiD Cabinetry though Zina Sheya Designs or Alkire Construction. If you have Interior Design questions or need design advice contact Zina at zs@zinasheyadesigns.com ardentforlife.net   33


A Few Thoughts on

CHEESY BREAD By Cindy Della Monica, Cheesemonger and Owner, Cheese Central

We are lucky to be living in California, where the climate is generally temperate. I grew up in the south Bay Area, where the sun shines daily except for the occasional rain clouds or marine layer of fog drifting over the Santa Cruz Mountains. There, my mom’s version of “cheesy bread” was Wonder white with American slices, toasted in a ton of margarine. As a young bride, I was excited to make the late summertime move to Seattle and school at UW. We arrived to a clear blue sky, sparkling water in the lakes and Puget Sound, and greenery filling the landscape. The first of the fabled northwest rain started early in October, a bit of snow dusted roofs and roads in November, and then rain, and drizzle, and more rain—until AUGUST of the following year! Inclement weather to me means dinners of soups, stews, chili, hearty roasts or meatloaf with a side of vegetables, and bread or rolls. These foods make the house feel cozy against the drab consistent gray through the windows. I was already a bread baker before the move, but I certainly had time and incentive to perfect my techniques during our Northwest stay. Fast forward from the rainy 70’s … to today’s aromas in my cheese shop in the sunny Central Valley town of Lodi. I teach bread baking classes here, and there are 100 different cheeses at my fingertips to use in breads, muffins, scones and rolls of all kinds. More often than not, my carb creations accompany hearty salads filled with local produce, from Delta asparagus to the myriad fruits and vegetables grown all around us. The soup/stew/roast meals are confined to December through March, then the grill is taken out from its winter cover. Yeasty pizza dough with fresh toppings and gooey cheeses of all kinds are a go-to grill item. The garden starts to kick in fresh herbs and veggies until the summer abundance brings us back to those hearty entrée salads where bread and cheese play a minor role, but are present nonetheless. Today I look out my window as I’m writing. Gray and rainy, drippy shop canopies and slick streets. Chili is in the crockpot at home, and I’m thinking a sweet/ savory cornbread should go with it. Our weekend menu also has a beef broth vegetable soup--a few baguette slices with Fromage Fort (see recipe on the right) will be wonderful next to that bowl of soup! 34. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

If you can’t make bread dough, please try the Fromage Fort. We use this recipe at the cheese shop when we have bits and pieces too small to sell. Whipped up with white wine and garlic, this schmear is spread onto good bread and tucked into a hot oven for instant gratification. It will bring cheesy goodness onto a delicious bakery baguette—you won’t be disappointed. If you haven’t baked a golden yeasty loaf before, take the plunge into a floury mixing bowl next. Google basic bread dough, add shredded cheese to the dough in the final mixing, and let rise and bake as directed. Easy-peasy! Keep in mind bread baking is an exact science—measure precisely; yeast is a living organism that loves warm liquid and warm air; and the slow drift of time lets you rise a delightful loaf. Read a few chapters, or watch that movie with the kids while the house fills with a yeasty aroma. The Zweibelkuchen (recipe on page 24) is a great German recipe that will remind you of a creamy oniony pizza! Also, try the cheesy buttermilk cornbread with your favorite chili or stew…delicious. 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 www.cheesecentrallodi.com


Fromage fort is the ultimate way of using leftover cheese. Recipe adapted from Jaques Pepin.

Put about 1/2 lb. of various cheese pieces in the bowl of a food processor. We use all kinds, but limit the blue cheese to less than 15% of total weight. Add 1 garlic clove, about 1/4 C of dry white wine and a big grinding of black pepper. Salt is usually not needed, but taste the mixture and add some if it is. Process for 30 seconds or so, until the mixture is creamy but not too soft, and then pack it into small containers. The fromage fort is ready to use now, either served cold or spread on bread and broiled for a few minutes. Broiling will brown the cheese and make it wonderfully fragrant.



Preheat oven to 375⁰. PAM an 8x8” baking pan, set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine the melted butter, sugar and honey. Whisk in the eggs one at a time, beating until the mixture is smooth. Add the buttermilk and mix to combine.

8 T butter, melted 1/3 C sugar ¼ C honey 2 eggs, room temperature 1 C buttermilk 1 C flour 1 C cornmeal ½ t salt ½ t baking soda 2 C shredded sharp Cheddar, or spicy Jalapeno Jack

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, salt and baking soda. Stir in shredded cheese to coat well with flour mixture. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring with a spatula until only a few lumps remain. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with the spatula to create an even layer. Allow the batter to sit for 5-10 minutes before placing in the oven.

A simple quick bread, sweet and savory. Yield: 1 (8x8) pan

Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

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An easy yeast dough, German-pizza style… 1 pkg. active dry yeast 1 t sugar 1 ½ t salt 1 C water 3 C flour 1 T butter 6 slices of bacon, fried until crisp, fat reserved 2 yellow onions, sliced ¼ t cumin ½ t salt Freshly ground black pepper 1 egg yolk 1 C sour cream

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In large mixer bowl, combine yeast, sugar, salt, water, ½ C flour, and butter. Beat for 2 minutes. Add enough flour to make a soft dough. Turn out onto lightly floured board and knead for 5 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Cover and place in lightly greased bowl, and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Meanwhile, fry onions in reserved bacon fat until soft and slightly golden. Pat dough into lightly greased 12” pizza pan or baking sheet, pressing up sides to make a slight rim. Evenly distribute onions, bacon, cumin, salt, and pepper over dough. Bake 400⁰ for 20 minutes. Whisk together egg yolk and sour cream. Pour over the onions, and bake 10-15 minutes longer, until sour cream is set and bread crust has turned golden brown. Serve warm or room temp.


Two Bean

Vegan Soup By Carole Morris

Many of our New Year’s resolutions included losing weight and getting healthier. We thought we would help get you on the right track with this vegan soup. This delicious and satisfying soup will be extra sexy if served with the Cheesy Cornbread recipe in this issue of Ardent.

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TWO BEAN VEGAN SOUP Sauté together 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 chopped onion ¼ cup minced garlic

2 cups stewed tomatoes 2 cups pinto beans (canned or precooked)

1 cup celery

2 cups red beans (canned or precooked)


Mix together in bowl

1 teaspoon oregano 1 teaspoon thyme 2 teaspoons cumin ½ teaspoon black pepper 1 teaspoon red pepper 1 jalapeno (chopped)

1/2 cup green pepper 1 cup crushed tomatoes 3/4 cup brown sugar 3/4 cup white vinegar 2 tablespoons onion powder 1 ½ teaspoon salt


Sauté, in olive oil—onions, garlic and celery. When brown add oregano, thyme, cumin, black pepper, red pepper, jalapeno, stewed tomatoes, pinto beans, and red beans. Simmer, while you mix together the rest of the ingredients. In a bowl—mix together green pepper, crushed tomatoes, brown sugar, vinegar, onion powder and salt. Add to soup mixture and simmer for an hour or more on low heat. ardentforlife.net   39


Spring Into

Smoothies By Tonya Gonzales, Holistic Nutritionist

Food is information for the body, not just calories. Calories are certainly important, but they’re not the only factor to consider. Your food has the power to reset your hormones, but it’s a two-way street: food controls your hormones, and your hormones dictate what your body does with food. Healthy food tells your good genes to turn on, and your bad genes to turn off. Now is a time when those resolutions fail, and you probably return to using caffeine and sugar to boost your energy. You might feel like you’ll never get rid of your 4-cup a day coffee habit, or sugar cravings. But you can. So where do you start? One shake at a time. Imperfect action tops perfect inaction. Drink your shake as a meal replacement, morning wake-up call or an alternative snack. No caffeine. No sugar. Adding more vegetables and lean protein to your meals, will help you lose that I-need-a cookie-now feeling sooner than you think. Every day, with every sip… you will experience more peace of mind for making a healthy choice for your body and have more energy. You may even find you’ve shed a few pounds, with no difficulty and an increased feeling of well-being.

It’s almost impossible to screw up a smoothie. Throw any combination of milk, fruit, nuts, and other goodies into a blender and presto: You’ve got drinkable meal. Not everyone can stomach dairy, so there are a variety of milk substitutions—like hemp, rice, soy, almond, and coconut—or try dairy-free yogurts.

Here are a few tips to make your smoothie taste even better: · Pour in liquids first and add ice last.

· Start with the lowest blender speed and work up to higher speeds. · Divvy up leftovers into an ice cube tray for easy blending the next time. · Freeze fruit for a thicker consistency. Chop first, for easier blending. · Try your smoothie from a bowl—if you're not in a sipping mood, top with fresh fruit, seeds, chopped nuts, or shredded coconut for a texture change. · All recipes listed, serve one individual. 40. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018


Coconut water is a great substitute for water after a workout because it has been found to offer the same hydration as leading sports drinks (minus some of the calories and sugars). This smoothie highlights the superfood pineapple, which boosts the immune system and has a ton of vitamin C.


1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk 1/2 cup coconut water (or try coconut water ice cubes) 1/2 cup frozen pineapple 1 teaspoon honey 1 tablespoon shredded coconut 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


Smoothies don’t always have to be for the sweet-tooth sippers out there. Ginger adds spice to this savory beverage and might help ease sore muscles. Cayenne pepper has also been shown to suppress appetite and boost metabolism.

Ingredients: 3 carrots

1/2 avocado 1 tablespoon lemon juice 1 cup water 1 tablespoon grated ginger, pinch cayenne pepper


Avocado and chocolate are a divine duo! The other half of the avocado (from Savory Surprise recipe), is perfect for this!

Ingredients: 1 cup water

1 scoop chocolate protein powder 1/2 avocado 1/4 tablespoon chia seeds 1/2 frozen banana 1/8 cup ice 1 tablespoon almond butter 1/2 tablespoon hemp seeds 1/4 tablespoon flaxseed

Smoothies are a great way to obtain instant vitamins and health benefits, so drink up! Tonya Gonzales has been involved in health and wellness for more than 15 years. She is a marathon runner, writes a health and wellness blog and is an award winning chef. She appeared regularly on television as the local food and wellness expert and authored a health column for Live Well Amarillo before recently moving back to Northern California from Texas. Need personal dietary support? Schedule a nutrition coaching session with her! Her mission, her passion, is to educate and empower people towards a lifetime of healthy habits which includes personal and group nutrition coaching, healthy cooking classes, therapeutic essential oils, yoga and fitness of any kind. Health, wellness and people are not just her lifestyle, they are her LIFE!! foodfreaktonya.com

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CRAZY ABOUT HAZY By Anthony Dyer, Raley’s Beer Expert

Look through the beer menu at any brewery or tap house in Sacramento, and you are bound to find beers labeled as “Hazy” or “NE (New England) IPAs.” In rare cases, it might be called a “Vermont IPA” or “double dry hopped IPA.” While the names change, they are all referencing the same thing, an IPA that has an appearance that is cloudy, but where is the reference? Being an IPA, hazy beers are flooded with hops, usually even more than the standard IPA. Upon hearing that, most people would think that NE IPAs would be bitterer than their well-known cousin, as hops are known for adding bitterness to beer. However, NE IPAs do not have the overpowering bitterness that the IPA style has become synonymous with. Instead, the hazy style IPA has an intriguing fruit or citrus-like character that makes it easy to drink. The incredible smooth and citrus-forward nature of these beers has many people describing them as being “juicy.” This beer is so uncharacteristically IPA that many people who wouldn’t touch an IPA are loving this new style. With a juicy character, smooth-mouth feel, and lack of clarity, many Hazy IPAs are compared to orange juice instead of other beers.

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While Hazy gets its name from the appearance, haziness in the beer is a product of trying to achieve a beer that has a creamy smooth mouthfeel and maximum aroma, which gives great hop flavor, but limits the bitterness on the palate. While this haze craze seems new, the style has been around for some time. One of the first credited types of this beer was produced almost 15 years ago in the city of Waterbury, Vermont. Local brewer John Kimmich, at The Alchemist Brewery, created a beer named “Heady Topper.” Kimmich created a beer that was immensely hopped and left it unfiltered and unpasteurized. The IPA came out thicker and contained many microscopic compounds that would usually be filtered out. These compounds added flavor and aroma to the beer. The final product was murky, opaque, and citrus colored. While the appearance of the beer was not Kimmich’s focal point, customers noticed and identified the beer through this quality alone. As the beer’s popularity grew, other brewers started to notice, and the NE IPA market began on the east coast. Since then, hazy beers continued to gain momentum before coming to the west coast craft brew scene (about two years ago). While Hazy gets its name from the appearance, haziness in the beer is a product of trying to achieve a beer that has a creamy smooth mouthfeel and maximum aroma, which gives great hop flavor, but limits the bitterness on the palate. One of the primary methods of doing this is in the yeast strain selection. Yeast is the work horse of any beer. As many brewers will tell you, brewers make wort, yeast makes beer. With hazy IPAs, the yeast strain is even more important. The yeast strains chosen for these beers leave large amounts of fruity esters in the beer and particulate matter suspended in the finished product.

Late addition hopping is another technique that is used in creating a hazy IPA. With late addition hopping, hops are flooded into the boil (at the very end of the boil), and in the early stages of fermentation. This gives the beer a massive boost in aroma and extracts less of the alpha acids from the hops, limiting the bitterness. The late hop addition leaves tiny bits of the hops floating in the finished beer, adding to the flavor and aroma profiles.

While these techniques are the current primary methods for making a hazy beer, brewers are artists and are constantly looking to push the envelope to find new and creative ways to make beers better. Only time will tell if this is a fad or a trend, but hazy IPAs have not shown a sign of slowing down. Even the large craft breweries have started to produce a hazy option - Sierra Nevada released its rendition, “Hazy Little Thing,” this January. Whether you love or hate Hazy IPAs, all craft beer fans will recognize that hazy IPAs are the current “it” beer, and that shows no signs of changing.

Here are some great local Hazy IPAs worth seeking out and trying. Track 7 Brewing CoSukahop North East-Ispired IPA Track 7 Brewing CoMo’suka Northeast-Inspired Double IPA Moonraker Brewing CoYojo NE IPA(Named a top 50 beer in the world by Ratebeer.com) New Glory Craft BreweryTurbidity New England Pale Ale Device Brewing Co-Curious Haze NE IPA Flatland Brewing CoMurk Diggler- Hazy IPA

Anthony Dyer Anthony’s career at Raley’s began in 2000, when he started as a courtesy clerk, bagging customers’ groceries. Since that time, he has advanced from store management to Raley’s expert and merchant on beer. As his love for food and beverages grew, Anthony developed a strong passion for craft beer and now gets to bring that passion to life. California is home to many craft brewers and as the beer buyer, Anthony aims to make Raley’s an industry leader in craft beer.

Anthony completed his bachelor’s degree in economics from Sacramento State University and completed a master’s degree in economics from UC Santa Barbara. He is a Cicerone Certified Beer Server and a Wine and Spirits Education Trust-Wine and Spirits Expert Level 2.  He continues to grow his beer knowledge and is working on becoming a Certified Cicerone. 

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PETER PETTY Hep-Hopera! Written by Nan Mahon

Hep-Hopera! It’s hip hop with an operatic form; and therefore entertaining, danceable, and just plain fun. Bandleader, singer, songwriter Peter Petty has created a Hep-Hopera performance that keeps audiences moving. It’s the Harlem Renaissance, the Cab Calloway show, the 1950’s Your Hit Parade.

So, all through his years at John F. Kennedy High School, Petty sang in the school concert choir, the jazz choir, and any stage performance available acting—as well as singing.

“It’s based on all that big band music my parents had playing on the radio when I was a kid,” said Petty.

“I was featured in several principal roles,” he said.

On his more serious side, Petty likes to engage the songs of the disenfranchised, such as the Fat Waller classic, Black and Blue.

Petty joined the Harley White Orchestra as front man and singer, doing mostly jazz. After five years with Harley White, Petty left the band to form his own.

If a song breaks his heart, he wants to sing it. To add to his complete embracement of all musical genres, Petty holds an annual sing-along tribute to the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar in his backyard, singing all the parts himself.

The house in Sacramento, where Petty grew up, was filled with two parents, four boys, one sister, three cousins, music, and lots of love. “I realized I could sing when my older brother was learning to play the guitar and asked me to harmonize with him,” said Petty. “It was easy and automatic to me.”

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But it was not a musical career he planned when he enrolled in Sacramento City College. “I thought I wanted to be an English and drama teacher.”

While at college, he saw a leaflet announcing auditions for singers at the Sacramento Opera Company. He joined the company and sang with them for eight seasons. In the years after high school, Petty acted in a movie and several films, took a day job as court reporter, and got married. At age 32, he re-enrolled in Sacramento City College.

With his group of seven to thirteen musicians, Petty combined all the things he loved in the entertainment world. Often in a costume, Petty leads the band and the audience through the best parts of yesterday’s music. “I can indulge in what I like about entertaining,” he said. “It’s what I have to share.”

“It was the first American protest song,” he said. “It all comes from the early blues.”

“I have no escape plan,” he says. “Music is what I do. I am both privileged and grateful.”



In order to help young talent grow in the difficult entertainment business, Petty is a director on the board of the Sacramento Preparatory Music Academy in mid-town. The non-profit is dedicated to music arts education and related art forms. Petty and his wife, Theresa, have one child, a son named Simon, who is also a musician currently attending the California Jazz Conservatory in Berkeley.

At age 50, Petty is looking forward to leaving his day job as a free-lance court reporter to devote all his time to music. “I have no escape plan,” he says. “Music is what I do. I am both privileged and grateful.” In his own style of promoting the kind of music that endures, Petty guarantees a program for his audience that is “just a hell of a lot of fun.”

Petty and his band will be featured March 9, at the Lullaby of Broadway Revue presented by the City of Elk Grove Arts Commission. The event is free to the public and will include a variety of singers performing songs from Broadway musicals. The show will be held at The Sun Grove Church Theater and is free to the public. To learn more, visit the City of Elk Grove website.

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SHELTER PUPS Sponsored by Leselie Sategna of State Farm and Justin Pinnell of M&M Real Estate

Are you looking for that special someone who will love you unconditionally? One who will be there to greet you when you come home with a tail wag or a meow? If so, there is a place where you can find that special someone. The Bradshaw Shelter, located at 3839 Bradshaw Road, has hundreds of pets looking for their forever home. Why not stop in and see if we can help make that special love connection for you. Call 916-875-5246 for more information.

Meet Chucky!

"Erik is a rock star, and is really adorable and such an easy going boy, we know you will love him as much as we do!" 46. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

My name is Chucky, and you will find me in kennel CATFE. I am a neutered male, brown tabby and white Domestic Shorthair. I have been at the shelter since Jan. 22, 2018. ID# A731423

Meet Erik!

Erik is a two year old neutered Pit Bull. He is adorable and loves everyone he meets. He walks well on a leash, plays well with others, and wants to please. Show him a treat and he is all yours. He has been at the Bradshaw Shelter since November and would love to find his forever family. ID#: A728395


Meet Pilot!

Meet Tyler!

Lovely, lovely boy. Enjoys playful female dogs, extremely handler focused. You will find me in kennel D-094. I am a neutered male, white and brown brindle Pit Bull Terrier. I have been at the shelter since Jan. 20, 2018. ID# A729276

Tyler- sweetest boy ever. Needs to be on daily high blood pressure meds which are around $4-$6 a month. Enjoys other cats, very people friendly. I have been at the shelter since Dec. 12, 2017. ID# A729252

Meet Dollup! My name is Dollup, and you will find me in kennel D-023. I am a spayed female, black and white Pit Bull Terrier. I have been at the shelter since Jan. 13, 2018. ID# A727829 ardentforlife.net   47



Pet Food Pantry

Help the Food Bank feed our Four-legged friends by donating pet food today!

Like anyone who has been “adopted”

by their furry kids, the clients of EG Food Bank love their pets. For some of our clients, their pet is their only source of companionship. Helping families and especially our seniors and homeless clients stay together with their pets is crucial. Marie Jachino, the Executive Director of the Elk Grove Food Bank, started the Pet Pantry six years ago. Marie stated, “It’s been a great addition to our programs. The clients are so grateful, especially the over 900 seniors we serve“. Pet food is distributed at Elk Grove Food Bank Services through our Emergency Food Distribution program. If you are in need of pet food, please make the volunteer at the window aware of your need. If you are able, please consider a donation of pet food. EGFBS is open for donations Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Visit us at 9820 Dino Drive, Ste.140, Elk Grove, CA 95624. Questions? Call (916) 685-8453 Interested in participating in the next Pet Food Drive? Turn to page 80 to learn more.



Ana & Kevin Photographed by Lynn Martin of

Elk Grove Photography www.elkgrovephoto.com

Who are you?

Ana: I consider myself very lucky to have

an amazing and loving family. They mean the world to me and make my life 100 times better. I have many hobbies that I really enjoy, and I have a career that I find challenging… yet very fulfilling. However, I had been single for a long time and the only thing that was missing was having someone to share my life with. But after I met Kevin, there is not much more that I can ask for. Life is good!

Kevin: I am the Director of Purchasing,

Biotech Company in the Bay Area. I consider myself to be a family and friends man… first and foremost. I love all of life’s experiences and I’m always looking forward to traveling to new places around the world and seeing

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new things. I love music and play the drums. I am a happy person, but I am now the happiest I have ever been since I met Ana. I feel extremely lucky to have met and married her.

How did you meet?

Ana: We met on a dating site. We both had been dating for a few years and it was getting tiring; since dating can be very time consuming and take a lot of effort. We both had decided to take a break from dating, and cancel our memberships. However, one week before they expired, Kevin contacted me and we decided to meet. I had little expectations and knew I needed a break if this didn't work out. However, I was extremely impressed when I met him.

We both couldn't believe how well we got along or how well we connected. And after a short courtship, we knew we had something special and the rest is history!

The Proposal?

Kevin: I knew within the first year dating, Ana, that I loved her and wanted to spend the rest of my life with her; so I wanted to do something special. I really wanted to take her to Eiffel Tower in France for at least part of our honey moon. Therefore, I flew her to Las Vegas, so I could propose to her on top of the Eiffel Tower there. Then, for the honeymoon we could go to the top of the real Eiffel Tower to celebrate. To make sure the night was special, I had a table with champagne waiting for us up on the


Love is being so incredibly happy with the person you are with and knowing that there is nothing you would change about him.




I love her spirit and her joyful energy and passion for life. I love how much she cares about her family and is always willing to be there for them.

observatory deck of the tower (there was even a full moon that night). We walked around the deck for a bit, then I decided it was time to propose. It was a beautiful night, but I was nervous—not because I was worried what her answer would be (I knew she would say yes). I was nervous because I had the ring in my hand and the floor of the deck was 40 stories in the air…and was only a metal grate. If I dropped the ring, it would be gone for good. I asked her to marry me and of course she said YES. I slipped the ring on right away, and we enjoyed the rest of the evening.

What is love?

Ana: Love is being so incredibly happy with the person you are with and knowing that there is nothing you would change about him. He is everything, and more than you could ever ask for. It's knowing that you want to spend the rest of your life next to this person who is your best friend, and you will always be there for each other.

What is love?

Kevin: Love to me is wanting to be with someone more than you want anything else and having that person feel the same way

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about you. It’s knowing there is nothing you wouldn’t do to make that person happy.

What do you love most about him?

I love his kindness, sense of humor, his intelligence and there tons of other qualities I like about him (but there too many to name). It doesn't hurt that he's hot! He is my best friend, and I know that I can always count on him. He makes me feel special every day and for that I'm very grateful.

What do you love most about her?

I love her spirit and her joyful energy and passion for life. I love how much she cares about her family and is always willing to be there for them. I especially love how everyday she says something to me, no matter how big or small, that makes me feel important.

When did you know you were in love?

Ana: Early on I knew that Kevin was special, and that I had never felt this way about anyone else. I didn't want to rush things, so I just enjoyed my time with him. However, we both naturally started talking about our future together and I knew that I was falling in love.

When did you know you were in love?

Kevin: I knew I was in love with her not very long after meeting her. I had never met anyone that had everything I was ever looking for in a wife and partner. She checked every box, kind, caring, giving, smart, supportive, loving, and not to forget the most attractive woman I’ve ever met. I just didn’t think it was possible to meet someone that had it all.

Fun facts

Kevin: When we were dating at some point we knew this was going to be forever, and I wanted to exchange keys to our places to make it easier to come and go. I had a copy of my key made so we could put it on her key ring. One day we came back from the store to my house, and my hands were full of groceries, I asked her to open the door for me with her key of my house. Instead of grabbing my house key, she grabbed her house key and shoved it in the lock of my front door. I thought, oh no, she’s going to break the key but to our shock and surprise, her key unlocked my door. We compared the two keys and they were identical. The locksmith told us the odds of two people (who know each other) to have the same



key are one in a million. I said it’s a sure sign that we were meant to be together


We went to Paris, Venice, Rome and Florence. It was a dream come true, and we had a blast. It was a true adventure and we could not feel more blessed to have had such an amazing honeymoon. We traveled very well together and became even closer. We will never forget the memories we created on this trip.

Wedding details

The wedding was at the beautiful Grand Island Mansion. We had our ceremony in the garden, our reception in one of their gorgeous dining rooms and dancing was in the Patio. We were so excited to have access to the entire mansion and have our guests experience the different rooms. The food was delicious and everyone agreed that it was the best wedding food they had ever had. Our DJ was amazing and we danced all night long! Our immediate family, Kevin and I got to spend the night in the Mansion's gorgeous bedrooms. Every room was unique and extremely special in its own way. After the wedding, we had pizza with our family (in the Mansion). The next morning, we woke up to the great smell of freshly baked treats. They also had fruit, mimosas, etc. waiting for us. It was a real treat to have this experience and to share it with our families. We feel very blessed because we thought our wedding was more than we could have ever imagined.

Photographer - Lynn Martin of Elk Grove Photography Venue, Caterer, Cake, Wedding Coordinator Grand Island Mansion - DJ - Digital Delta DJs Florist - Nina's Flowers and Gifts




If it's your first time buying or selling real estate, you don't know what you don't know. There are tons of potential pitfalls and challenges along the way; they are hard to anticipate when you don't know what to expect.

But luckily for you, most of the missteps taken by first time buyers and sellers are pretty universal, which means you can learn from their mistakes and avoid falling into the same traps. Here are four common real estate mistakes to avoid the first time you buy or sell a home:

Thinking you know the right price.

The price of a home - whether you're buying or selling - is one of the most important components of a real estate transaction. But there's a lot more that goes into pricing than what meets the eye. 54. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Pricing a home is a kind of science. There are so many factors that come into play - time of year, current market conditions, how quickly homes are selling in the neighborhood, and the current value of the home. The real estate agent takes all of those factors into consideration when coming up with the right price for a home. Without a real estate background, it's impossible for you to understand all of those conditions and how they affect the price of a home. If you're selling, you're likely to think your home should sell for a higher price because of the value it holds for you. If you're buying, you're likely to think a property should sell for less because that means a better deal on your end. But ignoring your real estate agent's pricing advice, because you think you know what the price of a property should be, is a mistake. As a seller, you'll end up overpricing your house (which will leave it sitting on the market). As a buyer, you'll end up lowballing your offer (and losing the house in the process).

The first time you're buying or selling a home, it's your best bet to leave the pricing to the experts. Your real estate agent will always work to get you the best deal - and keep you from pricing yourself out of the deal you want.

Not budging on negotiations.

Another mistake first time buyers and sellers make is being too rigid when it comes to negotiations. Most real estate transactions require a bit of compromise. As a seller, you might need to give in on some of your buyer's demands. As a buyer, you might need to work with the seller a bit in order to close the deal. It's just the way real estate works. And if you're not willing to give an inch, the deal can very quickly go south. Now, just to be clear: you should never compromise TOO much. Don't compromise on the things that are important to you. But if a minor repair is all that's standing between you and closing your real estate deal, giving in can be much easier than walking away.

The first time

you're buying or selling a home, it's your best bet to leave the pricing to the experts. Your real estate agent will always work to get you the best deal - and keep you from pricing yourself out of the deal you want.

Not thinking outside of the box.

If there's a mistake that nearly all first time home buyers make during their home search, it's not thinking outside of the box. Most first time buyers have a very specific idea of what they're looking for in a home. And while it's fine to know what you want, refusing to look at properties that don't check off every single item on your wish list is a major mistake - a mistake that can keep you from finding a home you're in love with. If you want to find a home you love, it pays to get creative and see as many properties as possible. Have certain non-negotiables (like a specific number of bedrooms or a designated outdoor space) but allow for some wiggle room on everything else. You'll end up seeing more properties, and who knows? You might fall in love with a house that's totally different from what you thought you wanted - a house you would never have seen if you didn't think outside of the box.

Trying to do everything on your own.

Perhaps the biggest mistake you can make the first time you buy or sell a home is trying to do everything on your own. Buying or selling a home is not only hard work, it requires a certain level of knowledge and expertise. You need to know where to look for hot properties, how to market to buyers, how to negotiate, and how to file all the paperwork... it can be completely overwhelming. Which is why you need a real estate agent to walk you through the process. When you work with a great real estate agent, they make the experience of buying or selling a home easier, faster, and more profitable. Trying to do everything on your own is a mistake, but hiring a real estate agent can quickly rectify that. Buying or selling your first home can be overwhelming. But now that you know the most common mistakes to avoid; you're well on your way to a stress-free, first-time buyer or seller experience. If you have questions regarding investment properties or real estate in general contact Justin Pinnell BRE- 02045095, M&M Real Estate at (916) 812.0576 www.jpsellscalifornia.com ardentforlife.net   55





Insurance, yeah—I know, who wants to talk about this stuff? It’s boring and uninteresting! I have been in this industry for over 20 years and you might think it would be monotonous, but helping clients with their insurance needs is what I was called to do. I know there are many other insurance agents that would say the same thing. We are here to help you when you need us. Insurance is not to protect you from a bad day, insurance is to protect you from a bad life. 56. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Insurance is a practice or an arrangement by which a company (or government agency) provides a guarantee of compensation for specified loss, damage, illness, or death in return for payment of a premium. The question is how much insurance do I need? What am I protecting? I have worked with many people over the years, pertaining to their insurance and investments, and many spend more time researching a television than they do their insurance. They will talk about LED TV or LCD TV but when I ask about limits of liability that they have on their auto, their home or their umbrella, they have no idea. These limits need to be set correctly before

they have a loss. Remember, limits cannot be changed after an incident. Insurance does not pay for speculative risk but pure risk. Pure risk is the just in case this might happen. If the just in case happens, please do enough research to be accurately insured. When I work with clients, I start with what are they worried about and what keeps them up at night. Then I look at assets, goals, and the time they have until retirement. After all of this, I make a recommendation. Most on line carriers will assign a liability limit and then talk to you about add-ons. How does this cover a need? If you understand insurance then please utilize all the on line insurance carriers, however if you

HOW MUCH INSURANCE DO I NEED? WHAT AM I PROTECTING? are confused at all about coverage’s ask a professional. They are the liaison between you and the insurance company… if there is ever a problem. Remember, a great price does not pay your bills when you are injured. Let us see if I can give you some applicable information for your own situation. Let’s talk auto! The typical scenario is a client with a home and two cars. Take a look at the value of the home, bank accounts, other assets and then add them up. Take these assets and minus the debt and you get a net worth. This is what you are looking to protect, based on your net worth. I will then be able to help you set your coverage limits. You should be at or above, unless you want to self-pay a portion. An auto policy limit can go as high as a million dollars. If the client’s assets are worth more, then I talk about an umbrella policy which will wrap around every other policy they have. Pricing can be reduced by increasing your deductible.

There is a huge difference when you selfinsure a little. Just take a look at the pricing. You don’t want to pay too much, but you don’t want to pay too little either. Why is this process so important? If you are ever in an accident and you hurt someone this is where an attorney will investigate your worth. They will look at all of your assets and your insurance, then decide who they will sue. They don’t have to take your insurance, they can come after your assets instead! The insurance company will defend you (well most of them will) but if you are underinsured, you might have to sell that house. So to sum it up, insurance is not the same at every company—and what someone else needs may not be what you need. Take a look at your net worth, and set your liability limits for your auto, home, boat, etc. accordingly. This will make sure if there’s an accident, you are not paying for it for the rest of your life.



Hilma was scheduled for Surgery for a herniated disc that occurred when she bent over to pick up some luggage. A back specialist took an MRI which showed a herniated disc that was pinching on the L5 nerve root causing excruciating pain down her right leg accompanied by numbness, tingling and a “hot poker” feeling. Walking was almost unbearable and a wheel chair was the only way she could get around for two months. She tried a round of epidurals that wore off within a day or two. She tried some high dosage prescription pain pills with only an upset stomach to show for it. Her specialist said “Your only option at this point is surgery.” He scheduled her for surgery 3 days later. However, Hilma didn’t want surgery. Many of her friends had undergone surgery with no or minimal results. So Hilma began to get on the Internet and find every possible non-surgical option for a herniated disc. It seems as if everyone is talking about revolutionary, new spinal decompression for neck and back pain. More than 7,000 neurosurgeons, physical therapists, medical doctors, and chiropractors have added spinal decompression over the last 10 years. More than 10 research articles support up to 80% effectiveness with even the toughest of cases. And now even other countries are getting in on the action as spinal decompression becomes the worldwide “go to” treatment for neck and back pain. Listen to how one medical doctor helped not only himself but also his patients. “I was amazed at the results. I was astounded. I have now treated hundreds of patients including myself and am continually impressed with the results”. Dr. Donald Bailey, M.D., Pain Management, Savannah, GA

Why All the Fuss?

Simple. Hundreds of thousands of successfully treated spinal decompression patients might say that spinal decompression was nothing short of a miracle. It has been called a “Godsend”, “life changing”, “miraculous”, and even “the best decision I ever made.” These mounting spinal decompression success stories are from patients who have helped find relief from back pain even after everything else failed, sometimes even after failed back surgeries. Celebrities, CEOs, Professional Athletes, patients into their nineties, and even medical doctors themselves all seem to know something that the general public still may not be aware of.

The Controversy

The controversy isn’t over whether spinal decompression works. Hundreds of thousands of happy patients agree on that. The controversy is fitting “alternative” medical practices into a model dominated over the years by pharmaceutical pills, shots, physical therapy and surgery. Until recently patients like Hilma thought these were the only options. Patients complain every day that they don’t want to take pills because of some potentially nasty side effects. Shots tend to be temporary and patients know that simply disabling your body from telling you not to do something in order to not make it worse is probably not something you want to disable. They say, “I want to actually FIX the problem, not just mask it.”

to the office and the Doctors explained everything. The Dr’s put me on the Decompression Table and only 3 weeks later my back and leg feel wonderful. No more pain pills or emergency room visits for me. I cannot say enough about Spinal Decompression! I recommend it to anyone with back or neck pain.”

Is It Worth It?

The Breakthrough

Because of these concerns doctors, engineers, and researchers have spent the last 15 years searching for a non-invasive, non-surgical, pill free, clinically proven way to actually fix the growing epidemic of neck and back pain and not just mask the symptoms. So it’s no surprise that when research began mounting showing up to 80% success rates, long term effectiveness and not just temporary relief from researchers and institutions such as doctors from Mayo Clinic and researchers at John Hopkins, it created a serious stir.

The Revolution

The machine that was the subject of these research findings is called spinal decompression and is now being offered by thousands of clinics all over the world. In fact some believe that “there will come a day when EVERY back pain specialist, physical therapist and chiropractor will have a spinal decompression table because that’s how effective this treatment really is.” One Orthopedics Surgeon has even been quoted as saying, “As an orthopedic surgeon and peer reviewer, I see many patients who are significantly worse after back surgery. In many cases I believe that if they had been treated with spinal decompression before surgery they would have resolved completely”. Dr. Howard Berkowitz, M.D., Orthopedist, Atlanta, GA. Many clinics have even added up to 10 spinal decompression tables just to keep up with the demand of the happy, successful, life changing results of their local patients. This treatment has gone from a medical doctor just wanting to fix his own back pain to a full blown phenomenon. Even the United States patent office has added several patents for spinal decompression equipment to protect the technology from imitators. Now, thanks to revolutionary spinal decompression technology patients are saying goodbye to 10, 20 even 30 years of back pain with this comfortable, safe, non-surgical back and neck pain option. Luckily Hilma was one of those. Hear what she had to say. “I was three days from having back surgery when I saw an ad in the newspaper. I came down

Many patients would say that a treatment with almost no side effects that is non-surgical and doesn’t involve highly addictive pills with lots of side effects is a no-brainer. However, make no mistake about it the “established” medical community (and of course they know everything) will say that pills, shots and surgery are all the options patients need. But there’s no denying that hundreds of thousands of happy patients that had tried everything else and failed and then got life changing relief from sometimes even only a couple of safe spinal decompression treatments, couldn’t be wrong. Frankly I think after 10+ years of success spinal decompression is not only here to stay…. But may even become the world’s new leader in the treatment of back and neck pain. Will this new therapy put spinal surgeons out of business????

So What’s the Catch?

Dr. Steven Hansen, one of the nation’s spinal decompression specialists says, “There are 3. First, while spinal decompression is far less expensive than surgery, the treatments are not always covered by insurance. Luckily the treatments are affordable and most clinics offer financing and discount programs.” “Second, some patients will require up to 4 weeks of treatments. While many patients get significant relief after the first week of treatments, some patients may require up to 4-6 weeks of care to see maximum results depending on the patients health, severity, duration of symptoms, and social factors such as diabetes, obesity, smoking and others.”

“And last but not least some patients do not qualify for this program. Patients such as pregnant women, spinal cancer patients, patients with aortic aneurysms and a few other conditions do not qualify. Check with your doctor to see if your condition would qualify for spinal decompression treatments.”

How Can I Find Out If Spinal Decompression is Right For Me?

Rhino Chiropractic is one of the few prestigious clinics in the area now offering spinal decompression treatments. Call today to see if you qualify for spinal decompression treatments for a herniated, bulging or degenerated disc, sciatica or chronic neck and back pain.

Steven B. Hansen, D.C. Rhino Chiropractic

9792 Bruceville Rd, Elk Grove, CA 95757 Call (916) 685-1230 or visit us at www.RhinoChiropracticElkGrove.com.


Women’s health concerns and how they can TAKE CONTROL By Anne Srisuro, M.D, Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center

Weight gain. Stress. Worries about cancer. Sexual questions. The list of women’s health concerns can run the gamut. There are some specific things women can do to take control of their health. We talked with Anne Srisuro, MD, obstetriciangynecologist with Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento/Elk Grove. She is also the Assistant Director for Regional Women’s Health for Kaiser Permanente, in Northern California.


In your experience, what are women’s top health concerns?

One of the most common things that tends to worry women is weight gain over their life span. Your weight is more than a number on a scale — it can impact how you feel every day, and the quality of your life.

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Another big concern is cancer prevention. They read about cancer. They know people who have had cancer and they are afraid it may happen to them. The third thing is low libido. You might say life gets in the way and can impact both time and energy in this important area.

What is your advice for helping women who are worried about their weight?

There are a lot of fad diets and promises of easy solutions, but there is no quick fix. The key to weight loss is adopting lifelong healthy habits. You should have realistic expectations. Take baby steps. Choose one change, make that a habit. Then make another change. If you try to change too much at once, you may not be successful. You should do what is sustainable over the long term. There are a lot of women who aren’t doing anything at all. To them I would say, just get started. Do something. You don’t have to go to the gym for two hours. That may seem daunting and it probably won’t be sustainable. The focus

should be incorporating more physical activity in your daily life. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. When you have a 15-minute break in the middle of the day, go out and walk. Do some fast walking laps around the building or up and down the hallways at work. It’s a matter of just getting started. Start with small things and build from there. You will feel better and you will want to keep that momentum going.

Why should women get their weight under control?

Excess weight can lead to heart disease, high cholesterol, increased risk for certain cancers, joint issues and diabetes. If you're very overweight, your chances of getting some forms of cancer are higher. People who carry extra fat around their waist may have an even greater risk. Studies show that more than one-third of all heart disease is caused by extra weight and lack of exercise. Weight is a common thread to many other health conditions, and that’s why we want to help people get it under control.

health} What are women reluctant to talk about, but should?

Low libido. The tricky thing is there is no quick fix or simple pill for this, either. The problem for women is that there are many causes for low libido. It could be physical and should be discussed with your doctor. It could be psychological. But for many women, it stems from being busy and stressed. They are working, taking care of family and the home. Sex is not a priority. One suggestion is to schedule time for physical intimacy. Some women may be averse to that, saying they don’t want to plan it. But if you don’t plan for it, it may not happen. Aside from just sex, there is every day intimacy. It’s a matter of connection -- seeing each other, talking to each other. The hand holding, the hugs, really help you connect. Believe it or not, this is part of overall health.

It’s a matter of connection -seeing each other, talking to each other. The hand holding, the hugs, really help you connect.

You have already touched on how being busy can cause women to neglect their health. Can that busyness also lead to stress?

Absolutely. I find stress becomes more of a problem when women stop taking care of themselves. They don’t have that same resilience or positive outlook on things. Self-care is so important when it comes to dealing with stress. Take time to exercise and plan healthy meals. Find an activity that keeps life interesting and active with your partner or with your family. Take time to be mindful. Try 5-minute meditation where you take some deep breaths. Exercise. Prioritize what’s important.

There are so many health concerns. How do you begin to address them?

My overall advice is to just slow down. We are a society of instant gratification and constant bombardment of accessibility. It’s so fast paced. It builds on people’s level of stress. People don’t know how to slow down. But if they could… they would reconnect with themselves. When you are more mindful, you are not reaching for unhealthy snacks from a vending machine, you are sleeping better, you are less stressed. It’s all connected for a healthy lifestyle.

Any final words of advice?

Remember, you don't have to do everything. Taking breaks can help you stay healthy. Ask for help from supportive family members and friends. Take time to take care of you. You will be healthier and in a better position to take care of your responsibilities and to care for those you love.

Anne Srisuro, M.D., is a women’s health physician with Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento/Elk Grove. She has a special interest in health education, especially in the area of women’s health, and she is the Women’s Health Liaison for South Sacramento Medical Center and Elk Grove Medical Offices. During her free time, Anne enjoys cooking, food and wine, day hikes, reading and spending time with her family. Anne also sings soprano in a community choir and travels to Thailand every other year to visit her extended family where she has done volunteer work with war veterans and refugees. https:// mydoctor.kaiserpermanente.org/ncal/ provider/annesrisuro

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TIS THE SEASON.... COLD AND FLU By Dianna Singh, Owner of Elk Grove Vitamins

The Cold and Flu Season. These three dreaded words, cause an individual to shiver... just thinking about them! Well, you’re all in luck...All of us here at Elk Grove Vitamins want to help you with your worries and concerns. Everyday something new pops up in the media: a new virus, new flu and new diseases that scare the heck out of us. Decisions have to be made! Do we get on a plane or do we drive? Do we send our kid to school? Do I stay home from work? 62. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Our Diet

Let's face it......it's the one subject no one wants to talk about. Well, I do! It's probably the most important part of keeping our bodies in its most healthiest form possible.

SUGAR is one of the most harmful substances you can put in your body. Studies have shown that sugar is as harmful as drugs, with the same addictive response from your body. By sugar I don't just mean that white substance that comes in five pound bags....that makes yummy desserts. Sadly, that includes white flour, wheat flour , all those yummy (addictive) baked goods our bodies crave. Yes, crave! Just like drugs.....our bodies crave these products. The fact is, sugar causes inflammation and inflammation is the cause of most diseases. Therefore, this is a great place to start taking care of your body . We want you to feel great! Not sick all the time, your kids either. Did you know that after 30 days you can train your body to refuse those same addicting carbs? Seriously, it's true...



Vitamin C is another form of supplement to support your immunity. Did you know that every creature can increase production of Vitamin C... except humans? Crazy... Huh? Now, let's get that immune system working...

Here are just a few of many different ways to kick start this cold and flu season!


Elk Grove vitamins has been in business 22 years (wow, it is amazing). With that being said, we are knowledgeable on how to protect ourselves from those little invaders that could wreak havoc in our bodies. We agree that because 80% of your immune system is in your gut, that would be a great place to start.


Our first suggestion would be Probiotics to start building a healthy immune system. Everyone needs to increase and keep all that good bacteria in our gut . We carry a wide assortment of quality brands. Everyone in your family should be taking this very important

supplement. Including infants! Today with all of the viruses going around I personally take them daily, along with my husband and kids.


What a wonderful anti-viral property this is. It has been used for hundreds of years to fight the cold and flu. In recent studies, Elderberry Flavonoids bind to and prevent H1N1 infection invitro. This is one of our top sellers, look for it as a lozenge, extract or capsule.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is another form of supplement to support your immunity. Did you know that every creature can increase production of Vitamin C... except humans? Crazy... Huh? This is why we should supplement with a good Vitamin C source. We have many great brands to choose from.

This is another important immune booster. Studies show up to 33% of people are deficient in Vitamin C. We could talk about so many different varieties of supplements that can help boost your immune system. We would love to answer any questions you may have. Remember, as with any suggestion, always consult your Doctor.

Our staff here at Elk Grove Vitamins has a true passion for learning and sharing their knowledge with our customers. Please come by and visit our store. Allow our friendly staff to help you be the best that you can be! Our Motto is, "It's never too late to live healthy ever after!"

Dianna Singh, Owner of Elk Grove Vitamins 9647 E Stockton Blvd. Elk Grove, CA 95624 (916) 686-4488



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

Functional medicine looks at the core body processes as the source of all dysfunction and potential healing. So instead of treating the symptom of a disease or dysfunction with drugs, which work like band-aids but seldom fix the underlying problem, the reason for the imbalance is investigated and corrected. Conventional medicine has made impressive achievements in medical advances and continues at an accelerated pace. Our lifespans have increased, but if the final decades of our lives are suffering from, possibly, multiple chronic diseases, is this what we want? Will those extra years be meaningful and rewarding? 64. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

The proportion of children with chronic disease has increased dramatically over the last few decades. Children now have an increased incidence of obesity, asthma, ADHD, allergies, eczema and autism. Over a lifetime, these individuals could suffer for seven or eight decades. A 2005 study suggests that today’s children are the first generation expected to live shorter lifespans than their parents. This is a wakeup call. It is no secret that our health care system is in a crisis. In the U.S. we rely on insurance companies to pay for our care. However, the goals of insurance companies, doctors, and patients are not always the same. Health care is a business, and insurance companies make money when healthcare expenditures increase. Thus, there is no incentive for insurance companies to embrace treatments that shrink spending on health care. Additionally, the treatments are not necessarily those supported by the most recent evidence, they are simply what the insurance companies have agreed to

pay for. And if they have not agreed to pay for preventive care, you are on your own. Likewise, pharmaceutical companies have enormous influence in health care and are focused more on making money than optimizing health care. Also, 2/3 of medical research is funded by pharmaceutical companies. My Mother would say this was “The fox watching the hen house”. Our current medical paradigm is focused more on managing disease and suppressing symptoms than it is on addressing the underlying cause of disease and the prevention and reversal of disease. The average doctor’s appointment last 10-12 minutes, which is not enough time to investigate all the possible causes of a patient’s chronic illness. It is impossible to deliver high quality care when the patient has multiple chronic health problems, is on multiple medications, and has a new symptom.

Conventional medicine has made impressive achievements in medical advances and continues at an accelerated pace. Our lifespans have increased, but if the final decades of our lives are suffering from, possibly, multiple chronic diseases, is this what we want? health} A functional medicine approach would look more like the following. After considering the patient’s list of symptoms, the cause of those symptoms would be investigated. Thorough testing would be done to determine what some of the causes might be. Once those causes are identified, they are removed to see if the symptoms go away. Drugs are not completely ruled out, but underlying causes are first identified and corrected. Functional medicine is not a one size fits all approach. Let’s look at two patients with the same symptom. Each has a skin problem like eczema. In patient A, it was determined that there was a gut infection that was driving the skin condition and it was treated with a combination of antibiotics and probiotics. In patient B, the skin disorder was driven from an autoimmune disorder, which was treated with diet and supplements to help regulate the immune system. In conventional medicine each are likely to receive a steroid cream, but the skin condition will most likely not go away completely, because the underlying cause had not been addressed. Let’s look at an example of a patient who can’t sleep. If this patient goes to see a conventional medical doctor for insomnia, there will be no investigation to discover the root cause and she will, most likely, walk away with a prescription for a sleeping pill. Whereas, a functional medical doctor will look for the reason for the insomnia. Is it high cortisol because of stress, an imbalance of neurotransmitters or hormones, inflammation, low serotonin or melatonin levels?

Conventional medicine is well suited to deal with infectious disease, trauma and acute injuries. However, it falters in addressing chronic disease, the biggest health problem we face today. Conventional medicine is not true healthcare---it is disease management. ardentforlife.net   65

community} HEALTH

Launch Party ISAGENIX

By Chris Tanaka, Sher Khan Karate, Owner/Senior Instructor

On January 6th, 2018, Sher Khan Karate hosted a launch party for Isagenix. Isagenix is the fastest growing health and wellness company in the world. It offers solutions in weight loss, energy, performance, health aging, and wealth creation.

Parties like these help people understand how this company can help them reach their goals no matter what those goals may be. The biggest thing to understand is Isagenix is a health and Wellness Company and not a “diet plan�. We focus on helping people reach optimal health. Individuals get what they need from having the proper nutrition in their bodies and ridding the body of toxins. For many people that means losing weight and gaining lean muscle. Isagenix also offers great business opportunities. Network marketing is an amazing way to generate income through geometric progression. The goal is to free people from physical and financial pain.

Sher Khan Karate hosts these launch parties every couple of months to help people reach optimal health and grow their business. The next party will be in March. If attending one of these parties interests you, please contact Chris Tanaka over at Sher Khan Karate at 916.690.1736 to be put on the list.

66. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018



Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes Recipe inspired by Kathryn K.


1/2 cup oats 1/2 cup Egg Beaters, or 2 egg whites 1 teaspoon baking powder 2 tablespoons almond milk 1 scoop of chocolate protein powder (I used Creamy Dutch Chocolate Isalean brand, so good!) 1 tablespoon nonfat Greek Yogurt 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter


1. Mix all ingredients thoroughly in a bowl. 2. Coat a non-stick pan with cooking spray and heat over high heat. 3. When pan is hot enough, pour ¼ cup pancake mix into pan (per pancake) cook until tops are covered with bubbles and edges are cooked. 4. Turn pancakes over, continue cooking for about 30 seconds, and then enjoy!

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STRESS & CHRONIC PAIN By Sabrina Danielle

Stress is a prevalent component in today’s fast-paced world which can negatively impact an individual’s health and wellbeing. Stress is an incredibly important indicator of your health, and if there’s one thing that will kick your immune system into overdrive, it’s chronic pain. Massage therapy and chiropractic adjustments have been proven to be a means by which stress can be reduced significantly, on a physical and psychological level, which could enhance response to disease and injury. What is stress? Stress is a state of emotional or mental strain, pressure, or tension that results from difficulties, adverse situations, or extremely demanding circumstances. The very nature of stress by definition makes

68. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

it very subjective. An adverse situation to one person may not faze another. What one person considers extremely demanding circumstances would barely get a second thought by another. This makes it difficult to find a precise, universal definition. More often the term stress is used to describe the set of symptoms that are caused by stress, and those symptoms can be as varied as the people who are experiencing these symptoms.

The following are some examples of common stressors. PHYSICAL CAUSES OF STRESS car accidents improper lifting being overweight slips and falls repetitive motion rotating shifts at work

EMOTIONAL CAUSES OF STRESS death of a loved one alienation or loss of affection divorce deadlines at work decline in self-esteem crying children depression geographical move


over eating caffeine consumption eating foods high in corn syrup hormonal imbalance prescription medications high sugar consumption high sodium intake over-the-counter medications white flour consumption

health} It is important to understand how the body reacts to stress. There are three basic ways our bodies perceive stress: environmental, physical, and emotional. An example of environmental stress is when you hear a loud noise playing nearby, or pollution would be another example of environmental stressors. Physical stress includes illness, lack of sleep, or poor nutrition. Emotional stress is different, as it encompasses how we interpret certain things. You may become stressed due to relationship conflict or a passive aggressive person in your life; this can be in your family or work relationships. What’s unique about emotional stress is that we have control over how much of it we experience, much more so than environmental or physical stressors. In today’s fast paced society, we work longer hours, and the media is constantly overloading us with the latest tragedy. It is easy to see why many people experience anxiety and stress ranging from mild to gut wrenching levels. However, there is good news—massage and chiropractic care is useful for helping individuals manage their stress levels.

When you’re under stress, your bodies fight or flight response is triggered. Which means your heart beats faster and your senses become more acute, stimulating your sympa-

thetic nervous system. One of the effects of chronic stress is muscle tension and contraction. This can lead to uneven pressure on the skeleton which in turn leads to subluxations. Massage and chiropractic adjustments can help ease muscle tension, helping ease the stress on certain parts of the skeleton and the subluxations. A crucial element of managing personal stress is achieving a balanced spine and relaxing the body’s muscles. Nutrition is also a crucial component in stress management. Studies have found that massage and chiropractic adjustments can also help improve your overall health. These treatments can alter immune function, affect heart rate, reduce blood pressure, and aid in helping maintain overall good health.

Although massage and chiropractic adjustments cannot eliminate stress, it does help to relieve symptoms of stress in the body. The more stress the body endures the more sensitive it becomes to pain and physical imbalances. Massage therapy and chiropractic adjustments help bring the body back into balance, relieving pain, aligning the spine, and improving circulation… which is essential in relieving muscle tension. It is integral in achieving and maintaining a relaxed, balanced state, shutting down the fight or flight response that accompanies stress and allowing the body to rest and heal.


Stress symptoms can affect your entire body, physically and mentally. Ultimately, stress symptoms can lead to some very serious health conditions including, diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), heart disease, and obesity to name a few.

Common Symptoms of Stress Include:

Sleep problems Depression Anxiety Muscle Tension Low back pain Fatigue Irritability Gastrointestinal Problems Lack of motivation Restlessness Chest pain Feeling overwhelmed Headaches Inability to focus Decrease / increase in sex drive

If you are experiencing stress in your life or stress symptoms, those symptoms are likely to get worse if untreated. You can care for your body and health by getting help for your stress with massage and chiropractic care to treat your symptoms.

Taxpayers with Tax Reform Questions A tax services agency tackles frequently asked questions about how and when the new legislation could affect clients. The most extensive update to the U.S. tax code in more than 30 years was recently signed by President Trump, and made major changes to the tax code for individuals and businesses. We want taxpayers to understand how this might impact them by answering some commonly asked questions. To help understand the changes coming in the future, Jim Hooker of Jackson Hewitt Tax Pros compiled common questions and answers from taxpayers and what they should consider in preparation for tax year 2018: “We’ve had clients calling to ask how the new legislation will impact their taxes,” said Jim, “and we’re here to help them navigate any

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By Jim Hooker at Jackson Hewitt Tax Services

questions they may have. Clients will notice most changes on their 2018 tax returns, which aren’t due until April 2019.”

Will the 2017 Tax Cuts and Job Act affect my 2017 income taxes?

No, the new tax bill focuses on changes for tax years beginning January 1, 2018, so we will see most changes on our 2018 tax returns, which aren’t due until April 15, 2019.

How does it impact my personal income tax?

The new bill keeps the seven different tax brackets, but does reduce most of the brackets: 10%, 12%, 22%, 24%, 32%, 35%, and 37% (current rates are 10%, 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, 35%, and 39.6%). Many of the lower tax brackets are widened, allowing for lower taxes at all income levels. Small business owners who are sole proprietors or whose business income is taxed on their individual return will get a break due to the new, lower business tax rate of 21%.

Updates made to deductions?

The standard deduction increases substantially. Itemized deductions are still available, but only the following, and there are new limits or thresholds: lMortgage interest paid on an original loan for

up to $750,000 lState

and local income, property, or sales tax up to a total of $10,000 lThe

medical expenses floor, or amount subtracted from the total expenses before deduction, has been reduced to 7.5% of adjusted gross income (AGI) for all taxpayers lCharitable

contributions – the new limit is 60% of AGI. Any charitable contributions over this amount must be carried forward and added to the next year lCasualty

losses – but only for Federally Declared Disaster Areas. Theft losses are no longer allowed.

education} TAX REFORM How does the new bill affect the Child Tax Credit?

The Child Tax Credit and the Additional Child Tax Credit are larger. The total Child Tax Credit for each qualifying child under age 17 is now $2,000 per child. In addition, up to $1,400 of the credit for each child is refundable. The credit is available for incomes up to $400,000 if filing a joint return and $200,000 for all others. This can mean a more substantial refund for hardworking low-income taxpayers and more deductions for middle-income taxpayers. Taxpayers may also claim $500 per dependent for dependents who aren’t their children.

If I don’t have health insurance, will I still be penalized?

The penalty for not having health insurance remains in place for the 2017 and 2018 tax years. The penalty has been repealed beginning January 1, 2019.

Have personal exemptions been eliminated?

Under the new tax laws there are no personal or dependent exemptions.

What about the alternative minimum tax rate (AMT)?

The AMT is still here, but with a higher exemption of $109,400 if you are Married Filing Jointly (up from $84,500), $70,300 for Head of Household (up from $54,300), and $54,700 if you are Married Filing Separately (up from $42,250). The exemption phase-out threshold is increased to $1M for MFJ taxpayers and $500,000 for all others.

How are pass-through provisions affected?

Basically, deduct 20% of business income as deduction, and the remainder is taxed at new rates. There is some other great stuff for “immediate expensing” of business assets, and small businesses are a big winner!

To keep the cost of the bill within Senate budget rules, all of the changes affecting individuals will expire after 2025. At that time, if no future Congress acts to extend the changes, the individual tax provisions would sunset, and the tax law would revert to its current state.

What are the lesser-known impacts of the legislation?

lThere’s no more tax deduction for amounts paid in exchange

for college athletic event seating. You can’t pay to get those college tickets and deduct them. Better get those payments in before December 31! lS corporations will be required to report all profits as salary,

and they have to pay FICA and Medicare tax on the profits, regardless of whether they distribute those profits. lThere are no more business expense deductions. If you have

Be sure to see a Tax Pro to discuss how tax reform impacts you. Visit Jim Hooker at Jackson Hewitt Tax Services, Elk Grove, 9632 Emerald Oak Dr, Ste D Elk Grove, CA 95624, or call (916) 685-8551 72. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

been a remote employee who deducted a home office, travel, or other items, you’ve lost a large deduction. lCasualty losses are no longer allowed unless the loss is from

a federally declared disaster area.

lLosses associated with theft are not allowed at all.


Names How We Got Them


By Elizabeth Pinkerton

p Sifting basket--Southern Miwok

We have names of streets and roads, names of towns and communities, and names of schools. How did we get them all? What is the history of all the names? This story is an attempt to help folks have a better understanding of the names they see on signs all over Elk Grove and South Sacramento County.

Photo of Miwok Park courtesy of the CSD.

We also have a street, Cosumnes River Drive, near the college. It is a fairly new name for the road that was known previously as Duluth, a short street that went west from Highway 99. We do not know why the road was called Duluth, the name of a French fur trapper, but perhaps someone lived there that came from Duluth, Minnesota.

Names from the Miwok Indians - Let’s start

with what is probably the oldest name among us – Cosumnes. We have the Cosumnes River, and it was here before any of us, finding its way down from the Sierra Nevada Mountains to the Mokelumne River and on to the Sacramento San Joaquin Delta - and then to the Pacific Ocean. Our first residents, the Miwok Indians, named it kossum meaning salmon. Umne meant the people of. That is how we get Cosumnes. The Mexican Land Grant on the south side of the Cosumnes River that was obtained by William Petty Hartnell in 1844, was called Rancho Cosumnes. Today, we not only have the Cosumnes River, but we have Cosumnes River Elementary School, Cosumnes Oaks High School, and Cosumnes River College. We also have Cosumnes Community Services District that handles our parks and fire department. And, long ago, we had a stage stop called Cosumne – at the site of today’s Davis Ranch east of Sloughhouse. 74. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Another name we get from the Miwok people is Mokelumne. It is the river that the Cosumnes River runs into in the Franklin area, and the names have similar origins. Moke appears to come from the Miwok name for fishnet, and umne is the people of. In 1861, we had the Mokelumne School south of today’s Franklin.

Names from the Spanish Explorers - The

San Joaquin River name goes back to the late 1700s, as it was named by the Spanish explorer, Gabriel Moraga. He was searching the area to find places for more missions, and he also explored the Cosumnes River. However, he wrote back to his superiors that this was no place for missions - laguna, laguna, laguna – and look at all the names we have today with Laguna! San Joaquin exists today only as the River to our south and an historic cemetery on Stockton Road and Sheldon Road, but it was a major name in days gone by. Sacramento County was made up of townships, and the San Joaquin Township covered much of what is Elk Grove today. We also had the San Joaquin School that was the first official school in Sacramento County in 1853. The San Joaquin School District built two more schools, referred to

as San Joaquin No. 1 and No. 2 – later known later as Pleasant Grove, 1859, and Elk Grove, 1860. San Joaquin School combined with the new Elk Grove Elementary School in 1921.

Names from Mexican California - Next

on the list of our names is the Monterey Trail, the route that went from New Helvetia, Sutter’s Fort in today’s Sacramento to Monterey, the capital of Mexican California. The name goes back to the late 1700s with the Spanish mission. There were two Monterey Trails - the one to the west is today’s Franklin Boulevard, and the one to the east that was used during flood time is today’s Highway 99. As a reminder of those long ago times, we have Monterey Trail High School today.

Grant Line Road is next on our history list,

and it goes back to 1844, winding its way 17 miles from what was the Upper Monterey Trail toward Sloughhouse. It was the line that marked Jared Dixon Sheldon’s land grant from the Mexican government, 18,662 acres along the Cosumnes River. It was named Rancho Omochumnes and also known as Rancho Río de los Cosumnes al Norte. The marker was lined up with Mount Diablo in the Bay area, and it was surveyed by William Tecumseh Sherman, who later became the famous General in the Civil War. We had a continuation school named Omochumnes High School, in Elk Grove in the late 1970s, but it combined with another school a few years later. Jared Sheldon built a house on a slough on Deer Creek, near the Cosumnes River, the house on the slough. That is how we got the name of Sloughhouse. It was also a stage stop during the Gold days. We have Sloughhouse Road today, and we also have the historic Sloughhouse Cemetery. And, for many years, we had the Sloughhouse Inn that has a different name now.


Gold miners, El Dorado, California


The Old Sloughhouse Inn photo courtesy of Elk Grove Historical Society

pThe Days of Gold - A number of names came to Robert Stockton, a naval officer, by Captain Charles in honor of his mother’s family. Today, we have the us during the Gold days, and some of them are still with us…one way or another.

Michigan Bar - The clue to this being a gold rush

era name is the use of bar in the name, which doesn’t have anything to do with drinking as one might think. When a river took a turn in another direction, or if there was a submerged bank of sand alongside the shore, the place was called a bar. For the gold miners, this kind of bar often led to a bonanza. The heavy ore settled at the bar, just waiting to be found by some lucky miner. There were three miners who found this bar on the Cosumnes River, and they were from the state of Michigan; so that is what they named the place. It grew to become a tent city of 2,000 folks during the great gold days of California. Michigan Bar Road was the main road from Stockton to Placerville. Folks crossed the Cosumnes River, using the Michigan Bar toll bridge. The enterprising businessman, who built the toll bridge, Samuel Putman, ended up with more gold in his pocket than any of the miners. We even had the Michigan Bar School in 1857. Michigan Bar is still known in the community of Rancho Murieta – the road and the bridge. Then we got Elk Grove in 1850. James Hall built the Elk Grove stage stop and named it for the tule elk that traveled through the grove of oak trees near the stage stop (today’s Elk Grove Regional Park). We have many names with Elk Grove including the Park, Elk Grove Boulevard, Elk Grove High School, Elk Grove Elementary School, the Elk Grove Cemetery, Old Town Elk Grove, and our City of Elk Grove. Also from the Gold days, we have Stockton Road that parallels Highway 99. It was the road to Stockton where gold was shipped to San Francisco. And, it replaced the name of Monterrey Trail. Stockton was named for

Weber who had a land grant there. It appears to be the first town in California that did not have a Spanish or Indian name. The town of Sheldon was a wagon making site for Jared Sheldon in the gold days. Jackson Road was the main route from Sacramento to the gold fields and the town of Jackson. It is State Highway 16 today, but many still call it Jackson Highway.

Dillard – Bandeen- This long stretch of road on

Franklin Cemetery, Franklin Elementary School and Franklin High School.

So…when you travel around Elk Grove, you will know what those names on the signs of streets mean. You will be able to take a trip back into the times of long ago as you sit in traffic – to the days of the Miwok people, Spanish and Mexican California, and the days of Gold. And, you will be able to impress everyone you know with your knowledge of how we got those names.

the south side of the Cosumnes River, that connects NOTE: Read more about names in the next Highway 99 to Jackson Highway, is a very prominent Ardent Magazine. feature of the south county. It was first known as Bandeen Road, named for the early pioneer Bandeen family that lived there. It was a much traveled road BOOKS By ELIZABETH PINKERTON during the gold days, the main route for miners to Weber’s Place and Ferry, Stockton. The Dillard name History Happened Here, comes much later when the California Traction line set Book 1 – River, Oaks, Gold up a station there and named it Dillard for the family Book 2 – Fields, Farms, Schools that had the land there.

Franklin - Franklin Boulevard/Lower Stockton

Road/the Monterey Trail - Although we may not think of Franklin as a main road today, except in its most urban part, it was the first inland north-south road in our area. The road paralleled the River following the mighty Sacramento as it rushed on southward to join with the other great river of the Central Valley, the San Joaquin. First known as the Monterey Trail because it was the route from New Helvetia-Sutter’s Fort to Monterey, the capital of Mexican California, this was our earliest traveling route. During the gold days, the trail became known as Lower Stockton Road, one of two main roads that connected the growing city of Sacramento to Weber’s Town that picked up its new name of Stockton. The Franklin name came from the stage stop of the mid-1800s, named by Andrew George

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 elizabethpink@gmail.com.

You can also get the books at my web page,


ardentforlife.net   75


Neil Nayyar setting a musical record Written by Susie Franklin Roeser

76. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

Can you believe it? After almost 30 year of unpopularity, Vinyl Records are back in style and uniting music lovers of two different generations. Who’d have guessed? “Licorice Pizzas,” as they are sometimes nicknamed, aren't the only surprising kind of record making news in the music industry these days. Did you know Elk Grove has its own musical record setter? At 12 years of age, Neil Nayyar holds the Assist World Records Research Foundation’s title for the youngest person to play the most different musical instruments. Currently, Neil plays 44 different instruments, but by the time you read this, he is likely to have added a few more. His goal is to play 100 instruments by the time he turns 13 years old!

"It gives me a feeling of joy when I see people move with music, and it’s always fun to play for an audience." Now, you may be asking yourself, “How did Neil get started on such a monumental undertaking?” His parents believe this journey began even before he was born. They credit playing Mozart for him while he was in the womb as the catalyst for his talent. Interestingly, this musical prodigy didn’t show any signs of interest in music until he was five years old. This is when Neil took his first lesson—a drum class through Cosumnes C.S.D. (here in Elk Grove). Within minutes, it was apparent Neil would have a bright future in the world of music. From there, Neil began taking lessons to play piano, guitar, and then flute. Today, Neil takes music lessons from 12 music teachers. Seven are local and five provide instruction through classes Skyped every week from India, China and Italy. When Neil was learning to play his 26th instrument, he started looking into what it would take to become the world record holder for most instruments played (by the youngest person). His research revealed current records recognized a 23 year old who played 27 instruments. Neil was already well on his way to meeting and exceeding those numbers—so the next step was contacting the proper authorities to verify his accomplishments. Currently, Neil plays traditional string/bow, percussion, wind and brass instruments, sings vocals… as well as playing more culturally based instruments popular in Chinese, Arabic, Hindustani, Carnatic and Bollywood styles of music.

What will be the next instrument Neil learns to play? Neil says he picks the instrument at random, buys it, and then practices it until he can play it proficiently.

Speaking of practice, Neil spends six hours a day practicing his orchestra of instruments. When deciding which instrument to practice first, he looks at his strengths and weaknesses on each instrument and then decides how to divide his time among them. Some instruments, such as the sitar, guitar, veena, trumpet, and clarinet take more time to practice, while he has already achieved an advanced level on other instruments, so these require less practice. Neil says, “Practice is a must for any musician, even after they have mastered an instrument.” Watching professional musicians play helps keep Neil motivated to practice all of his own instruments. Favorite musical genres include: Pop/Rock, Jazz, Classical and Bollywood. Not only does Neil practice to learn new instruments—practice is also essential because he

enjoys performing on his instruments publicly. Neil belongs to several musical groups including: Capitol Chinese Orchestra where he plays Chinese Guzheng/Dizi, The CCC Ukulele Fellowship, and Sacramento Youth Symphony where he is part of the Harp Ensemble. Additionally, he is a member of a performance group at Elk Grove’s School Of Rock. Neil also has an active solo performance career. He’s been invited to perform on “The Steve Harvey Show” and auditioned for “America’s Got Talent” in January. “It gives me a feeling of joy when I see people move with music, and it’s always fun to play for an audience.” Neil explained. You might be surprised to find out, even with his busy musical practice and performance schedule, Neil still finds time to pursue other hobbies including Martial Arts (he is currently working on earning his black belt). He also enjoys drawing, painting, gymnastics and dance. In fact, Neil’s “Dance Card” is nearly as impressive and diverse as the musical instruments he plays. He enjoys Hip Hop, Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary, Tap Dance, Break Dancing, Bollywood, and Tahitian Dance. Given Neil’s unique combination of natural talent and enjoyment of performance, it isn’t surprising that he sees himself headed toward a career in the music field as an adult. Composer, author/



educator and music director are all jobs which he can see himself possibly pursuing.

As you can imagine, Neil has a wealth of experience when it comes to trying something new. What advice does he give for someone who's considering learning to play an instrument? “Begin with drums, we all can hit the drum with a stick and begin learning the rhythm—which is the heart of music.” suggests Neil. For those of you who are ambitious… and want to play more than one instrument, Neil recommends piano or guitar (since they are currently some of the most commonly played instruments).

Who knows? With all of this musical talent (along with the support of his parents and teachers) someday music lovers out shopping for the latest vinyl record might come across a record by Elk Grove’s very own musical record setter, Neil Nayyar.

ardentforlife.net   77


Artist Exhibits


The Elk Grove Fine Arts Center is a unique organization in that it is the only gallery south of downtown Sacramento (in Sacramento County) that is administered by artists privately. Their main goal is to provide an arts center that brings together artists and art lovers for education and enjoyment of the arts. Monthly art receptions with featured artists are held (along with six two-month Community Artists Display cycles) for emerging and established artists.  Numerous art workshops in all media by award-winning art teachers are also offered.  The community supports them through Special Event grants from the City of Elk Grove, and a Cultural Arts Award Program grant of the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission—with support from the City and County of Sacramento.   The photos below, of the January Arts Reception, feature artist Frank Barrera with his “Houses of Spirit & Shadow”.  The shadow boxes reflected scenes and memories from his childhood and the fairy temples from the Spirit House traditions of Southeast Asia.   For more information contact the Fine Arts Center at 916-685-5992


MARCH 3, 6th Annual Art Competition Show, continues through March 28th. APRIL 7, Pleasant Grove High School Art Show (Each year a local high school is featured to celebrate National Youth Art Month) – continues through April 25. MAY 5, Milford Zornes, famous watercolor artist’s work and Author Hal Baker will be on display through May 23. JUNE 2, Art Tour Kickoff Reception and raffle fund raiser, show continues through June 27th. JUNE 9, 7th Annual Art Tour where local artists open their studios for public to enjoy. JULY 7, Andrew Ciminelli, a Photographer, show continues through July 25th. SEPTEMBER 1, Jonathan Lowe, acrylic artist painter, show continues through September 26th. OCTOBER 6, “Journey of Hope,” where Artists are paired with Authors who have Mental health challenges, to give others insight, inspiration, understanding, strength, connection and raise awareness. The show continues through October 20th. NOVEMBER 3, Small Treasures Show. 60 local artists are given 5 panels to create one of a kind pieces of affordable art. Show continues through December 27th. DECEMBER 1, Small Treasures Show continues through December 27th.

78. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

community} HAPPENINGS

A NANNOSECOND in Art and Music

Written by Nan Mahon

A RT S be at i n El k Grove

ELK GROVE IS SHOWING OFF ITS ARTISTIC SIDE The entire month of March will be filled with art, in all its forms, throughout Elk Grove. Backed by The Arts Advocacy Project (TAAP), ARTSbeat will stage its inaugural program designed to showcase the many facets of art in this city. An inspiration of long-time Elk Grove resident Judy Tafoya, TAAP began planning for ARTSbeat last year. The community is now geared up to celebrate art all month long. It begins March 4, when the Elk Grove Presbyterian Church will present Jazz/Blues Vespers, an hour long program featuring local jazz musicians. Local celebrities will show off their artwork in a blind sale at Visions Art Show— Thursday, March 7, at The Falls Event Center. Added to the evening will be an auction of works from well-known artists, both local and nonlocal. The City of Elk Grove Arts Commission is offering a professional musical revue, Lullaby of Broadway on Friday, March 9, at 7 p.m. The evening show is free at the Sun Grove Church Theater. March 18 will bring a display of art, and authors, through the lobby of the Hilton Garden Hotel in Elk Grove. For anyone interested in becoming a writer, a free workshop if offered at the Elk Grove Library, March 21, at 6 p.m. As always, The Elk Grove Fine Arts Center in Old Town will be hosting an open house featuring a local artist. With such a variety of choices, most residents will find something they like. It is important to attend and to show support for the performing, literary, and visual arts in this art exposition. The Arts Advocacy Project and the Elk Grove Arts Commission have worked to join with the entire art community to bring ARTSbeat throughout the City for the people’s enjoyment. Check the calendar at www.theartsadvocyproject.com, info@theartsadocyproject.com, or 916-682-9718. 80. . ardentforlife.net ardentforlife.net- -winter winter2018 2018 80


Sun. Feb. 25th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Laguna Gateway Shopping Center. In the PetSmart parking lot. (8215 Laguna Boulevard) Elk Grove. Show some love to local animals and their owners, who are in need, during this Pet Food Drive benefiting the Elk Grove Food Bank Services and the City's Pet Food Pantry. Any dog or cat food graciously accepted. Visit www.shopelkgroveca.com for more information.

Farmers Market

Saturdays, 8 a.m. to noon Laguna Gateway Shopping Center (At Big Horn Blvd. and Laguna Blvd.)

Old Town Elk Grove Farmers Market Sundays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Old Town Plaza

World of Wonders Science Museum

Sat. Feb. 24th. from10:00a.m to 4:00p.m. General Admission [$5-kids/military, $6-seniors/students, $7-adults] Let your geek flag fly at the World of Wonders Science Museum’s Geekology event. With a variety of exciting activities, enthusiasts of all ages and stripes will find a scratch for that nerdy itch as they geek out at the WOW! The WOW Science Museum proudly becomes a geek cultural destination with areas dedicated to comic books, pinball machines, a gaming expo, board games, a virtual reality demo, hackerspace, arts & Minecrafts, 3D printing, and more. Presentations on the science of sci-fi and a cosplay contest will add to the fun. In fact, family-friendly costumes will get visitors $2 off their admission! The World of Wonders Science Museum will play the song of our people, so come geek out at the WOW! Contact Nick Gray at 209-368-0969 for more information.

save the date LULLABY OF BROADWAY 6th Annual Open Fine Arts Competition

Reception Sat. March 3rd from 4p.m. to 7p.m. Show continues through March 28. Categories: 1) Water Media, 2) Oil, Acrylic, 3) Pastel or Drawing, 4) Photography, 5) Three Dimensional. Entry Fee: $15 per entry per piece (nonrefundable) - limit 3 entries per artist. Entries will be limited to 20 juried works per category. Awards: First Place in each category - $200, Second Place in each category - $100, Third Place in each category - $50.

Hank and My Honky Tonk Heroes Thurs. March 1st. from 7:00 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Hutchins Street Square, Lodi. General Admission is $29

Join us for a nostalgic look at Hank Williams, and his influence on country music. Obie, awardwinning singer/actor, Jason Petty who brings Hank's music back to life paying tribute to artists such as Jimmie Rodgers, Roy Acuff, Ernest Tubb, and The Carter Family will be playing. A must-see for all country music fans! For more information call 209-333-5550


By The Arts Advocacy Project Thurs. March 1st from 5:30p.m to 9p.m. at The Falls. Free admission. ARTSbeat's opening night kickoff and fund raiser. Families welcome. Food and beverages available, live music, door prizes and a very different kind of an art show including… ...a silent auction of original art by Elk Grove's own award-winning and up-and-coming artists (great for beginning collectors) ...a live auction of original art by master artists of renown throughout the region and beyond (bid on an opportunity to own a very collectible work of art) ...and a unique and fun art sale with a twist of intrigue: Original art by non-artists (referred to as community 'celebrity artists') who happen to be prominent Elk Grove community leaders. The twist: Names of the participating artists will be well-publicized prior to the event; however, their identity as the creators of their specific art pieces remains anonymous until after the art is purchased at VISIONS on March 1.

This year's Judge is Kristina Gilmore an Associate Curator at The Crocker Art Museum. This event is hosted by Elk Grove Fine Arts Center, sponsored by the City of Elk Grove with a special events grant, funded in part by the Cultural Arts Award Program of the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission with support from the City and County of Sacramento, 365. com, and the Elk Grove Citizen. The Fine Art Center is located at 9080 Elk Grove Blvd., Elk Grove 95624. In Old Town Elk Grove. For more information contact the Fine Arts Center at 916-685-5992

By the Elk Grove Arts Commission. Fri. March 9th at 7p.m. at Sun Grove Church Theater. A musical production featuring Broadway show tunes -- everything from the classics to rock. Free admission. For more information visit www.cityofelkgrove.org


Presented by Chicks In Crisis Sat., March 10th from 10a.m to 6p.m. at Laguna Town Hall - Free Admission. Featuring work by internationally acclaimed artists, animators, illustrators and graphic designers - collectibles, memorabilia and more. A benefit for Chicks In Crisis. Local donations of art, collectibles and memorabilia welcome. For more information visit www.themotherhenproject.org


By Musical Mayhem Productions Fri, March 16th at 7 p.m. and Sat. March 17th at 2 p.m. at Cosumnes Oaks Performing Arts Center. Winner: 2017 Elly Award, Best Overall Musical - Spanalot; and 2017 Broadway Junior Theatre Festival - Best in Ensemble. Congratulations MMP! This will be a ticketed event. Contact Musical Mayhem for more information (916) 525-2995

Giant Pumpkin Growers Forum

Sat., March 3rd. Award-winning pumpkin growers from California, and beyond, will share their strategies on growing giant pumpkins at the annual California Giant Pumpkin Growers Forum—at the Pavilion in Elk Grove Regional Park. With a few special seeds and tips from those who know best, you could grow a GIANT pumpkin just like the pros! The forum is open to the public and will include a question-and-answer session, catered lunch, seed swap, seed raffle, seed auction and prize raffle. This year’s guest speaker is Joel Holland (a retired firefighter from Sumner, Washington) who was crowned the pumpkin king at the 2017 Safeway World Championship Pumpkin WeighOff in Half Moon Bay with his 2,363-lbs megagourd. Admission to the forum is $20 per person in advance and $30 per person at the door. Register online at www.yourcsd.com, by phone at 916-405-5300 or 916-405-5600, or in person at the Parks and Recreation Department Office, 9355 E. Stockton Blvd., suite 185, or the Wackford Complex, 9014 Bruceville

Vintage Trailer Show & Antique Market!

By The Red Door Sat. March 17th. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Elk Grove Old Town Plaza. General Admission $5 and Children 16 & Under Free. Contact The Red Door for more information 916-714-0619 ardentforlife.net   81

community} HAPPENINGS


By the Elk Grove Artists, Inc. Sat, March 24th. From 12 -6p.m. at the Laguna Town Hall. Elk Grove Artists, Inc. is the winner of The Arts Advocacy Project's first Arts Advocacy award, presented in 2017. Visual art show and open art competition. Competition entry details available at www.theartsadvocacyproject.com. Free admission. Music and entertainment. Refreshments available.

Breakfast with the Bunny

Sat. March, 31st. 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.

Get Fit, Get Healthy and Be Happy at Elk Grove FitFest

Sat. April 28th. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Elk Grove Regional Park. Join the movement toward a healthier, active lifestyle at Elk Grove FitFest! The Cosumnes Community Services District (CSD) and the City of Elk Grove will host this new fitness special event. Families can stroll through the free Fitness Festival to learn about healthy habits, fitness and nutrition, and take part in class demonstrations and activities. The event will feature the third annual Elk Grove Gauntlet adult fitness competition and the Kids Warrior Challenge course.

Registration Fee Pre-registration is encouraged as seating is limited. Ages 2 and up is $5 per person in advance and $7 at the door. All children must be accompanied by a paying adult.

The Elk Grove Gauntlet is a oneday fitness competition open to men and women, Scaled (novice), Rx (Open), and Masters (40+). Participants must be 18 years or older. An award ceremony will follow the competition with prizes given in each category. Cost is $100 per team of two males or two females. Details and advanced registration is available at www.elkgrovecity.org.

You can also pre-register by phone at 916-405-5600 or 916-405-5300, or in person at a CSD registration location.

Kids Warrior Challenge will give young athletes a chance to test their mental and physical abilities as they conquer challenging obstacles on an inflatable course! Registration is limited to the first 225 children ages 6 to 12. Cost is $25 per participant and includes a T-shirt and one hour on the course. Details and advanced registration is available at www. yourcsd.com. Event organizers are currently seeking vendors and sponsors to help FitFest promote health, fitness and family fun. For more information, contact the CSD at 916-405-5300.

Upcoming Events at Gifts From the Heart of Elk Grove

Seuss-a-bration Fri. Mar, 2nd, 5-7p.m. FREE “Seuss-a-bration” is for the whole family. A party honoring Dr. Seuss and all things related to Children’s Literature. Trading Card Workshop Sat. Mar, 10th - FREE For more information about their classes or events, feel free to call Susie at (916) 714-0914 or e-mail: giftsfromtheheartofelkgrove@gmail.com Would you like your event mentioned? Email submissions to us at info@mrsandmrpublishing.com 82. ardentforlife.net - winter 2018

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Ardent for Life Winter 2018  

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