Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine - March 2015

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California Travel Flower Power Food & Wine Family & Health The Arts

Historic Coronado Motor Hotel Yuma's Destination Hotel Celebrating Over 75 Years of Tradition Where The Past Makes History

Ideal Location Close to Shopping, Restaurants, Attractions & Activities Over 120 Clean & Comfortable Guest Rooms Full Cooked Breakfast at Yuma Landing Bar & Grill Free Hi-Speed Internet & WiFi ~ Work Desk Flat Screen TV & DVD Player Fridge ~ Microwave ~ Coffee Maker Iron & Ironing Board ~ Hair Dryer ~ In-Room Safe Two Swimming Pools ~ 1 Fitness Center 2 Business Centers ~ Guest Laundry Facilities Free Parking for Cars, Boats, Buses, RVs & Trucks Group Rates & Government Per Diem Rates

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233 4th Avenue, Yuma, AZ 85364 Toll Free: (877) 234-5567 Local: (928) 783-4453 PAGE 2

Contents… 4. Contents Continued 5. Editors Block

A Toast to the Arts 6. Some History on Flowers in Art 8. DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun 9. Book Clubs - How to Start Your Own 10. Historic Yuma Theater

Rants, Raves & Rock ‘n Roll 11. Alice Sweet Alice 12. Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway!

Creative Celebrations 14. How To Start Your Planning Process For the Wedding 15. Early Wedding Traditions 16. March Holidays

Eat, Drink & Be Merry 18. Peter’s “Veggie” Irish Stew 21. Confit Tomatoes With Fresh Thyme 22. Storing and Pouring Wine 24. Kitchen Utensil Tricks

Garden Gossip 26. Organizing Your Kitchen and Garage 28. Open Sesame - the Story of Seeds 29. Roses For Spring 29. Plants Of Horror 30. In An English Country Garden PAGE 3

Contents… Nature Connection 32. Wildflower Wonderlands

Quality of Life 34. Spring Cleaning a Negative Self-Image 36. The Children of Now… Evolution 38. Herbal Cleansing For Spring 39. Yoga, Ballet & Pilates Works For All Ages 40. Fat to Fearless

Success Express 41. Attorney Insider 42. A New Program for Emerging Travel Writers

Vacation Station 44. Ventura County West 47. Guanajuato, Mexico 48. Springtime in San Diego’s Backcountry

Way Back When 52. Born Under A Sign - March

Travel/Event Planner 54. Spring in Yuma in Southwest Arizona 60. Spring in California’s Yosemite Gold Country 62. Spring in California’s Sequoia Country

Upcoming Big Blend Radio Shows 65. March. 1: Film, Art, History, Foreign Policy, Travel & Events March 2: Spring in Yuma, Arizona 66. March. 8: Music, Restaurants & Recipes, Drug Dealing & Hollywood History March 9: Tonto National Monument and Globe, Arizona March. 15: Travel, Trails, Herbal Health, Fashion & Cooking 67. March 22: Music, Summer Camps & Travel, Writing & Book Marketing March. 29: Travel, Volunteering, Cooking, Employment Law PAGE 4

Editors Block… Hooray for Spring! This issue kicks of the new season with a full dose of flower power that includes features on desert wildflowers, planting roses, history of flowers in art, garden destinations in England, and Hollywood history of plants in horror films. We also take a look at noteworthy birth dates in the month of March, and share some of the traditions and legends behind St. Patrick’s Day and the Ides of March. March is a time to dust off the drudgery of winter, and we have expert tips, articles and interviews on how to organize the kitchen and garage, spring clean a negative self-image as well We hope you enjoy this month’s blend of topics! Be sure to subscribe to our Big Blend e-Newsletter to as cleanse the body with herbs. get your free Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine and Spirit of America Magazine in your email, and so Spring is a lovely time to get out and travel, and you can enter our Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway. we’ve got destination and event news focusing on Remember, one winner wins all the prizes we add California’s Ventura County West, San Diego’s backcountry, the Sequoia region, Yosemite’s Gold to the prize pot throughout the year. Country, plus, art and entertainment news in Yuma and Tucson, Arizona. When it comes to food, wine Happy Spring! Nancy J. Reid and Lisa D. Smith and cooking, we have recipes for a Veggie ‘Irish’ Big Blend’s mother-daughter publishing, radio and Stew and Tomato Confit, tips on utensils, and travel team; along with Priscilla - Big Blend’s pink advice on storing and pouring wine. sock monkey travel mascot! Listen to radio interviews including: filmmaker M. Front Cover Photos: Apple Blossom by Lisa D. Smith, Sean Kaminsky on his new documentary ‘Open Wine by Linda Kissam, Three Rivers Bathtub Race by Leah Launey, Painting by Ted DeGrazia / DeGrazia Sesame: The Story of Seeds’, musician Scott Martinez from the band Alice Sweet Alice, author This magazine is developed by Big Blend Magazine™. Meg Blackburn Losey, PhD on her new book copyrighted since 1998. No part of it may be reproduced ‘Children of the Now: Evolution’, yoga and pilates for any reason, without written permission from Big instructor Janice Lennard, and weight loss expert Blend Magazine, P.O. Box 87633, Tucson, AZ 85754Asher Fox. There’s also advice on planning a 7633. Opinions expressed by contributors are not wedding, tips on starting a book club, a new necessarily that of this publication or any of its staff. We program for emerging travel writers, and an inside reserve the right to edit submittals. All subject matter is look on what it is like to work in employment law. intended for general information only and not to be take as personal advice in any matter. Although every effort is made to be accurate, we cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies or plagiarized copy submitted to us by advertisers or contributors.


Some History of Flowers in Art By artist Victoria Chick, artist and early 19th & 20th century print collector Although a painted arrangement of flowers is not unusual today, flowers as a subject in art began as a minor decorative addition to other subjects. The earliest flower found in ancient sites is the lotus. It appeared on wall paintings in Egyptian tombs and in low relief sculpture from the earliest dynasties. The lotus blossom was also a motif used Irises by Van Gogh in Egyptian jewelry and was the inspiration for the shape of the capital at the top of Egyptian columns. By the Renaissance, there was a revived interest in Ancient mythology and this was sometimes mixed In the remains of the buried Roman city of Pompeii, in with Christianity. Botticelli’s 15th century works are an example where flowers are used to amplify covered with volcanic ash from Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D, fresco paintings have been found of a garden mythological subjects. In none of these examples though, were flowers the prime subject and this which included some flowers, shrubs, and trees. secondary role continued until the 17th century when the Dutch began to produce flower paintings. During the Gothic era from about 1200-1400 A.D., depiction of flowers in paintings became more specific because they were used as symbols of the But even in the Dutch floral paintings there was symbolism. We see the paintings as beautiful, personality or importance of particular people. For example, paintings of the Annunciation to the Virgin meticulously rendered, floral arrangements sometimes including tulips, a specialty of Dutch Mary would have a lily representing purity growers and hybridizers. But, to the people of the somewhere in the painting. Roses came to time, flowers represented much more than beauty. symbolize the blood of Christian martyrs in medieval painting. The word carnation comes from Some paintings showed flowers in various stages from just budding, to full bloom, to losing petals. For the Greek incarnacyon meaning “God becoming flesh”, in other words, Christ assuming human form. the Dutch, this was a metaphor for the stages of human life. On close examination, one can often This carnation variety was pink (flesh) and was see tiny insects chewing on flowers or leaves. often included in Nativity pictures. These symbolized decay and death. Butterflies on the flowers are a metaphor of Christ’s resurrection.

The Annunciation with St. Margaret and St. Ansanus by Simone Martini

In France, during the 17th into the 18th century, a few artists began doing still life flower paintings. In their studios, French artists painted flowers in vases with aesthetic ideas in mind. Symbolism did not concern them as it did the Dutch painters. The 19th century French Impressionists, being interested in the optical theories of light, spent their time painting outdoors recording their impressions of the effects of light at various times of day and under varying weather conditions. Gardens, flowery meadows, and street vendors selling flowers were images that were often subjects of Impressionist painters. Their brushwork was loose and the small color patches interwoven by the brush, rather than being physically mixed, are best understood by standing far enough away from the painting that the concept of “Optical Mixing” works. PAGE 6

Shapes, and large areas of color used expressively rather than naturalistically, preoccupied the Post Impressionists like Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Matisse. The famous paintings of sunflowers and irises by Van Gogh are admired for their boldness and simplicity in marked contrast to the detail and delicacy of the Dutch flower painting 200 years earlier. From the beginning of the 20th century to the present, flower paintings have tended to be greatly influenced by the work of earlier artists. Notable exceptions are the close-up, abstract flowers done by modernist Georgia O’Keefe, the innovative work explored by many American watercolor artists, and the color woodcut floral prints of Margaret Jordan Patterson. Victoria Chick is the founder of the Cow Trail Art Studio and received a B.A. in Art from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and awarded an M.F.A. in painting from Kent State University in Ohio. Visit her website at


Detail of Primavera by Sandro Botticelli

Listen to Victoria Chick discuss Flowers in Art on Big Blend Radio!

Roses, Convolvulus, Poppies, and Other Flowers in an Urn on a Stone Ledge by Rachel Ruysch

Narcissus in Opaline Glass Vase by Henri Fantin-LaTour


DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun Showcasing the works of infamous Arizona artist Ted DeGrazia, DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun is a fascinating 10-acre art and architectural destination listed on the National Register of Historic Places, in Tucson, Arizona. Opened in 1965, the gallery is home to over 15,000 originals of Ted DeGrazia art pieces including oil paintings, watercolors, ceramics and sculptures. There are six permanent collections on display and several rotating exhibitions each year. A limited number of DeGrazia originals are available for purchase, while the gift shop and online store offers a wide variety of popular DeGrazia reproductions. DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun is also home to the original home of Ted DeGrazia and his wife Marion, their burial sites, the adobe Mission in the Sun, the cactus corral, and the Little Gallery that hosts visiting artists during the winter months. There is no admission charge to visit the gallery and the grounds. On Display at DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun: "Way of the Cross" - The annual showing of Ted DeGrazia's "The Way of the Cross" is on display through Lent with 15 original oil paintings that depict the suffering and crucifixion of Christ. Instead of the traditional 14 Stations of the Cross, DeGrazia's collection culminates with the resurrection. "I never thought the cycle would be completed unless we had the 15th station where Jesus arises in glory," the artist explained on a 15minute audiotape that accompanies the exhibition. On display until May 27, 2015.

“The Lord Gave Me Brothers Saint Francis of Assisi” - DeGrazia created these paintings in 1966 for a book on Saint Francis that was never completed. The story for the book has been lost, but the paintings include images of Saint Francis and scenes from the daily life of a Friar called “Little Brother”. On display until Dec. 1, 2015.

"Enamel on Copper Paintings Of Ted DeGrazia" - Fired enamels are glass-based pigments that melt Little Gallery Exhibitions and fuse to metal when heated to high Feb. 22, 2015 – Mar. 6, 2015, Jeannie Fellow, temperatures. Between 1972 and 1974, Lumen Art Southwestern artist Ted DeGrazia’s focus on this Mar. 8, 2015 – Mar. 20, 2015, Raven Hatfield, Still technique led to the creation of hundreds of Life to Landscapes enameled copper and silver objects including jewelry, sculpture, and enamel on copper paintings. Mar. 22, 2015 – Apr. 3, 2015, Lynn Waltke, Wild Life Art The 1975 book DeGrazia Creates Enamels reproduced selected images from thirteen limited The DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun is open daily edition enamel on copper painting series. This from 10 am – 4pm, and is located at 6300 North exhibit features full and partial editions of those Swan, Tucson, AZ 85718. For up-to-date event paintings along with a selection of DeGrazia’s and exhibit information, call (520) 299-9191 or enameled jewelry, sculpture, and additional individual paintings. On display until Aug. 15, 2015. (800) 545-2185, or visit PAGE 8

Book Clubs How to Start Your Own By Lynn Wiese Sneyd 'The Book Biz Whiz'

Book clubs continue to be all the rage. If you can’t find one to join in your area, consider starting your own. Here are some simple guidelines to follow.

- During the discussion, the leader needs to decide when it’s time to move on to the next question and also monitor how far the discussion segues from the book.

- Start with a group of two to three people and add from there. But don’t make it too big. Setting a max of eight to ten members will allow for better discussions.

- At the end of the meeting, make sure everyone knows the book that will be discussed at the next meeting.

- Agree on the meeting dates, time and hosting schedule. - Have everyone bring in three possible book selections, and then choose which books will be read and who lead the discussion for each book. - Many authors are amenable to Skype sessions with clubs. Most authors can be reached via their website or social media platforms. - As you read, make notes about characters, setting, themes and topical issues. - The leader should write out seven to ten discussion questions. Some publishers include those questions in the back of the book.

For book selection ideas, consult your local librarian. If your area hosts a book festival, consider scheduling an outing to the event. Tucson, for instance, where I reside, is host to the Tucson Festival of Books every March on the University of Arizona campus. For readers and writers, it’s a thrilling weekend-long event that includes presentations by over 400 authors and draws over 100,000 attendees. Authors from all genres – from literary fiction to memoir, science, politics, cooking, YA and more – are represented. One of my friends has been in a book club for almost 20 years. Not only does this group of women meet monthly, but they have taken out-ofstate trips together and developed some pretty amazing friendships. Amazing, the power of a good book.


Listen to Big Blend Radio’s Interview with Lynn Wiese Sneyd!


Historic Yuma Theatre The Entertainment Centerpiece of Historic Downtown Yuma, Arizona Constructed in 1912, the Yuma Theatre originally functioned as a vaudeville and movie house. Though it has experienced a couple of fires, the Yuma Theatre has been in operation almost continuously since 1936. The interior decor has remained virtually unchanged, and features two beautiful mermaid murals in the audience chamber, and one of the only functioning carbon arc projectors west of the Mississippi. Offering seating for 650, ADA accessibility, excellent acoustics, state-of-the-art lighting, sound and digital projection capability, the Historic Yuma Theatre is managed by the City of Yuma with events occurring year-round. It is connected to the Yuma Art Center which hosts a variety of special events and classes, and houses four art galleries, a pottery studio, and a gift shop. For event information or to book a tour, call 928-373-5202 or visit SPRING PERFORMANCES AT THE HISTORIC YUMA THEATRE Mar. 3: The Best of Broadway: Four talented vocalists present a riveting salute to the music of the Great White Way in this concert production highlighting Broadway’s greatest hits with a mix of old and new – from “Oklahoma” and “West Side Story” to modern classics including “Les Miserable” and favorites from Andrew Lloyd Webber. Mar. 6: ABBA Fab: The Premier ABBA Experience! Mar. 10: Luck of the Irish: A Salute to Music, Dance and comedy from the Emerald Isle. This show promises plenty of surprises: you might find yourself doing a jig, singing along with an Irish fiddler, playing a penny whistle, reciting a limerick or taking part in an authentic contra-dance!

Listen to Rex Ijams, Historic Yuma Theatre& Yuma Art Center, on Big Blend Radio!


Mar. 18: 3 Redneck Tenors: Back by popular demand, these refugees from a Texas Roadhouse are classically trained tenors that put a southernstyle spin on the hits of the greatest tenors. Mar. 20: The Spouse Whisperer: Mark Cordes, The Spouse Whisperer. Mar. 24: American Made: A Salute to the Oak Ridge Boys, the Statler Brothers and Country Gospel! Nothing rivals the pure sound of a countrygospel quartet, and we’re bringing you one of the best! The Presidio Boys masterfully recreate the hits of Country and Gospel Music’s favorite vocal groups- including the Oak Ridge Boys, the Statler Brothers, the Cathedrals and more! Mar. 25: The Outside Track: Winner of Best Group in both the Live Ireland awards and TIR awards! This group united by love of traditional music, effortlessly fuse traditional & contemporary styles as they blend fiddle, accordion, harp, guitar, whistle, step-dance and vocals.

Mar. 15: Bring Back that Lovin’ Feelin’: A Salute Mar. 28: Good Rockin’ LIVE! A salute to Sun to the Righteous Brothers and Blue-Eyed Soul. Records and the Birth of Rock and Roll! This live Sensational artists such as The Kingsmen, The concert event pays tribute to the birth of rock and Rascals and Dion were the cornerstones of this movement, and their music has inspired artists ever roll and the music legends Sun Records helped propel to stardom. Good Rockin’ Live tells the tale since. This concert features classics including of how rock was born through the music and stories Unchained Melody, Just Once in My Life, Louie of those who lived it. Louie and The Wanderer. PAGE 10

Alice Sweet Alice Fuse fearsome dedication with diversely talented musicians, a mind-boggling work-ethic and a positive mission, and you’re facing an unstoppable force. Welcome to Alice Sweet Alice (ASA), a Kansas City alt rock hybrid, whose tasty tunes, stylistic diversity and passionate live show are paying dividends with a hard-to-ignore street buzz. Fronted by Scott Martinez (bass/guitar/vocals) and Ali Kat (vocals/keyboard/piano), Alice Sweet Alice plays genrebending music that resists description, classification or categorization – yet sounds intimately familiar. There are definite rock overtones sometimes paired with electronica, jazz, blues and post punk that ignites the senses with progressive composition and meaningful lyrics. ASA has shared the stage with such notable acts as Collective Soul, Adrenaline Mob, Chuck Mosley (Faith No More), Blameshift, Mushroomhead, Hurt, Taproot, Psychostick, Nothing More, Shaman’s Harvest, Pezband, Primer 55, Another Lost Year, and many others. Keep up with Alice Sweet Alice at

Listen to Scott Martinez on Big Blend Radio!

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Enter to Win the Year-Long Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway! ONE WINNER TAKES ALL! Every few weeks we add new prizes to the giveaway. These are announced in our Big Blend e-Newsletter, the monthly Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine and quarterly Spirit of America Magazine.


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Subscribe to the Big Blend e-Newsletter to get the monthly prize update, monthly question, and entry form. Maximize your chances of winning by answering as many questions as possible. Last entry will be accepted on November 10, 2015. Winner will be announced in the December 2015 issue of Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine.

Click Here to Subscribe to Big Blend e-News to Enter the Big Blend Bonanza!

Big Blend Bonanza Giveaway Prizes Include: PRIZE #1: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Three Rivers Bed & Breakfast – Located in Three Rivers, California this Riverhouse is only 8 miles from the entrance to Sequoia National Park. Guest rooms feature a high ceiling, tiled floors, queen-sized bed, TV/VCR, Wi Fi, wood-burning fireplace, A/C and heat, small private verandah, private access to Kaweah River, private bathroom, wine and chocolates. Prize added Nov. 25, 2014. See:

PRIZE #2: $75 Gift Certificate at DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun – Located in Tucson, Arizona, this 10acre historic landmark is home to over 15,000 originals of famous Arizona artist Ted DeGrazia’s art pieces. A limited number of DeGrazia originals are available for purchase, while the gift shop offers a wide variety of popular DeGrazia reproductions. This certificate is for in-store use only. Prize added Dec. 22, 2014. See:


PRIZE #3: 2 Night Stay for Two, at Dream Manor Inn – Located in Globe, Arizona, the gateway community of Tonto National Monument, this Tuscan-style hill-top boutique resort features 20 guest rooms and extended-stay villas, a pool and Jacuzzi, walking paths, lush gardens, fountains, waterfall, a putting green, complimentary DVD and book libraries, free WiFi, and BBQ areas. Gift certificate can be used between Sunday-Thursday. Prize added January 20, 2015. See

PRIZE #4: Coronado Motor Hotel Getaway – Located in Yuma, Arizona the historic Coronado Motor Hotel features comfortable Spanish hacienda-style guest rooms with modern amenities, 2 swimming pools, Yuma Landing Bar & Grill (the site where the first airplane landed in Arizona), and the Casa de Coronado Museum. The hotel is in walking distance from the Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area, the Colorado River, and historic downtown district. This prize includes a 2 night stay for 2 at the Coronado Motor Hotel (includes breakfast), $25 gift certificate for Yuma Landing Bar & Grill, plus a tour of Casa de Coronado Museum. Prize added February 23, 2015. See RULES & FINE PRINT: - Big Blend clients, colleagues, friends or family are not allowed to enter. - Must be 18 years or older to enter. - Must live in the USA to enter. - No transportation is provided to travel destinations that offer gift certificates in the giveaway. - Big Blend is not responsible for gift certificates that cannot be utilized due to business closure, change of ownership etc. - Gift certificates in prize package are not redeemable for cash, and cannot be utilized by someone other than the winner. - You must subscribe to the Big Blend Newsletter in order to obtain the the entry forms and answer the questions.


Just Engaged?

How to Start Your Planning Process for the Wedding By Rebecca Williams, Dream Manor Inn in Globe, Arizona Most of your vendors need to know how many people you are planning for. You also need to figure out a budget that you want to spend for the wedding. Start with figuring out an approximate guest list. By getting your approximate guest list and budget, you will be able to meet with your vendors. Sit down with your partner and parents to come up with a guest list.

Do not send “Save the Date” invites until you have put a deposit on your venue. Venues book quickly and some that you want to look at might already be booked for your date. Sometimes, couples will look at the venue, fall in love with it and change their date. When you find your venue book it and secure it with a deposit. Find out your venue’s policy on payment and follow it. A venue may drop you if you are late on a payment.

You may want to prioritize it this way:

- Need to invite, but probably won’t come. If you want to avoid surprises, you may want to send them a “Save the Date” invitation-but they may not respond to you, unless you note on the invitation to RSVP by a certain date. Or you can wait until you send your invitations and get your responses.

- Need to invite, and will probably come. These guests should get a “Save the Date” invitationespecially the ones who will be traveling. Depending on how formal you want to be, you can send an informal Facebook message/event or email. Most of your guests would like to see an engagement picture which can easily be done via the internet or local printer. Postcards are a budget friendly way of sending.

- Would like to invite, would probably come, but need to stay within budget. These guests can be invited once you have a better handle on what you end up spending from your budget and when you know more of the answers from the above groups. You will know close to what you are spending a few months before your wedding, when you have all of your vendors locked in. Continued on next page.


Finding the Right Vendors Friends, family and co-workers are a great source. Most have married or been to weddings and will let you know if they have had a great experience with particular vendors. Your venue will usually have vendors they have worked with before and can recommend. Check reviews on your vendors to feel comfortable with them before you talk to them. Feel free to ask your vendors for references. Some couples have a vision of what their wedding should be like. Communicate it to your vendors so they can help you. Not sure of your vision? That is okay too. Experienced vendors can help guide you through the process. Whether you know your vision or not, find things you like on the internet, Pinterest or other sources to share with your vendors so they can help you come up with your dream wedding. With good planning and great vendors-you will be able to relax and enjoy your day with your guests. Rebecca & Carl Williams own and operate Dream Manor Inn, a boutique resort, wedding and event venue in Globe, Arizona. Visit

Early Wedding Traditions! By Nancy J. Reid

Mankind’s belief in evil spirits is the basis of a lot of our traditions, and weddings have several customs that have morphed over time, but are still represented at most ceremonies. Originally, the bridesmaids dressed just like the bride in order to confuse evil spirits, and they accompanied the bride and groom on their honeymoon. In medieval times, the bride’s bouquet was made of strong herbs and garlic, meant to scare off evil spirits until after the ceremony. Once married the bride was considered to be very lucky and female guests attempted to tear bits off of her dress, to keep for their own good luck. Throwing the bouquet, which now means the girl who catches it will marry next, used to be a way to distract the guests while the bride and groom made their getaway to the wedding chamber. Once safely inside, the groom would throw the garter out to the guests, signifying the consummation of the marriage was about to take place–with the best man guarding the door. Also dating back to medieval times, the wedding cakes were small and made of wheat, symbolizing fertility and prosperity. The guests threw the cakes, not intended for eating, at the bride. Later the Romans began making barley bread cakes to be eaten. The groom would eat part of the cake and break the rest of the cake over his bride’s head. The guests would compete for the crumbs, thinking they would share in the fortune of the couple.

In some cultures a new bride was considered quite vulnerable to evil spirits, especially through the soles of her feet. It was also believed unattached evil spirits lurked at the doorway to the couple’s home. This belief led to the bride being carried over the threshold of her new home by the groom. Even the first wedding “rings” were tied on the bride’s ankles and wrists to keep her spirit from being taken away. PAGE 15

By Nancy J. Reid

March - A Stormy, Divided Month

St. Patrick’s Day

The word March, from the Roman word ‘Martius’, originally the first month of the Roman calendar, was named after Mars, the god of war. It is known to be a month divided by fine and not-so-fine weather, as pointed out in the old English proverb, “When March comes in like a lion, it goes out like a lamb.”

Lent is the Christian season of penance and prayer before Easter starts every year on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday, before Easter Sunday. This year, lent began on February 18th and will end on April 4th. Right in the middle of this period, St. Patrick’s Day arrives with food, dancing, parades, drinking and a lot of green!

Another popular March saying, “As mad as a March hare” is thought to come from the beginning of the hare mating season, when the male rabbits get a bit excited, often boxing with each other. This later gave rise to the slogan, “March Madness”, first used in 1939 by Henry V. Porter, a high school basketball coach, describing the excitement surrounding the Illinois state tournament for boys basketball.

St. Patrick’s Day, held in honor of the Patron Saint of Ireland, the missionary who brought Christianity to Ireland in the 400’s AD, is an interesting story that carries a lot of symbolism.

March 15, The Ides of March, according to the Roman calendar, is the first day of spring, the first day of the new year, and a day of a full moon. While it brings the end of winter, flowers, and sunshine, it also brings the tones of betrayal and misfortune.

Patrick apparently was not Irish, but born in Roman controlled Britain about 390 AD, to a wealthy, aristocratic Christian family. His father, Calpurnius, was both a deacon and a civic official; his grandfather, Potitus, was a priest.

Patrick was kidnapped at age 16 by Irish pirates and ended up in Ireland as a slave, tending sheep. He wrote in his book, Confession, "The love of God and His fear came to me more and more, and my faith was strengthened." Legend has it that he heard voices urging him to escape, and that a ship th St. Patrick’s Day, March 17 , a day of drinking and was waiting for him. He did escape, and found parades, falls right in the middle of Lent. passage back to Britain on a ship. Once reunited with his family, he again heard voices. This time The March equinox, occurring on the 19, 20 or 21st, urging him to return to Ireland to convert the Irish to marks the moment the Sun crosses the celestial Christianity. equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator – from south to north. On the Patrick became an ordained priest and returned to equinox, night and day are nearly exactly the same Ireland despite the warning from friends. He died length – 12 hours. on March 17, 461. PAGE 16

Legends surround Patrick, one being the use of the three leaf clover, or shamrock, to explain the Holy Trinity, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, to the Irish. The shamrock is a wild-growing annual plant that germinates in spring. The staff St. Patrick carried was said to be Ash and when evangelizing he would stick the staff into the ground and it would eventually sprout leaves, due to the length of time it took to get his message across to his audience. Of course the most well known story is the claim that he banished snakes from Ireland, driving them into the icy sea. According to Nigel Monaghan, curator of natural history of the National Museum of Ireland, who has sifted through vast collections of fossils and records, there has never been any snakes in Ireland. The many tales of snakes were most likely spread by monks centuries after St Patrick’s death. St. Patrick’s Day is one of America’s most popular celebrations and in many churches, the constraints of lent are set aside for the day. Saint Patrick's Day is a public holiday in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Newfoundland, Labrador and Montserrat. It is also widely celebrated by Irish and those of Irish descent around the world; especially in Great Britain, Canada, the United States, Argentina, Australia and New Zealand.

Morte di Giulio Cesare ("Death of Julius Caesar"). By Vincenzo Camuccini, 1798

The Ides of March An old man sits in the dirt, gazing down at the entrails of a freshly sacrificed sheep…. In a trance, he sees danger and hurries off to warn the most powerful man in the land, the man known as the “dictator for life,” of a plot of the dictator’s impending assassination and the betrayal by one of his own proteges. Joining a crowd gathered to “hail Caesar” the seer yells out “Beware of the Ides of March,” as a warning to Julius Caesar, then dictator of the Roman Republic. A few days later, on March 15, 44 BC, the seer sits on the steps of the Theater of Pompey. Caesar passes by him and scoffs, "The Ides of March have come,” sure of himself and that the prophecy of doom was wrong. “Aye, but not gone Caesar,” answered the seer. Later that day, Caesar is murdered by the same senators, including his protege Marcus Brutus, that had made him “dictator in perpetuity”. Caesar’s death triggered a civil war that resulted in his adopted heir, Octavian coming into power. Octavian vowed revenge, and on the Ides of March in 40 BC, on the fourth anniversary of Caesar’s death, his army at his direction, slaughtered 300 senators and knights at the siege of Perugia.

March Flowers: Narcissus or Daffodils Photo: Church of Our Lady, Goleen, County Cork, Ireland by Andreas F. Borchert.


March Gemstone: Bloodstone or Aquamarine

Peter's Veggie "Irish" Stew By Peter Sodhy, Three Rivers Bed & Breakfast Inn Ingredients: ½ large yellow onion 2 large toes of garlic 2 large (or 6-8 small) dried chilies 1 cap of Portobello mushroom 1 large potato 2 large raw carrots 2 cups of broccoli 4 celery stalks 4 whole leaves of bok choy 3 whole zucchini 5 cups water 3 tablespoons plain soy sauce 4 whole cloves 1 tablespoon brown sugar 2 tablespoons white pepper 2 tablespoons black pepper 2 tablespoons chili powder 1 tablespoon ground ginger Preparation: It always helps to have everything sliced, chopped, or otherwise, prepared before you start with the actual cooking. Take the ½ large yellow onion and cut it into two equal parts. The first part should be sliced thin (not chopped) and put aside. The second part should be chopped into roughly ½” chunks and also put aside.

Skin the potato and cut it into chunks approximately an inch square and put aside. Wash the Portobello mushroom thoroughly in water, especially underneath the cap. If there is a stem, remove it and retain the uppermost 1”. Chop that and the cap into 1” squares and put aside. Remove the remaining leaves from the broccoli then chop the broccoli into 1” chunks and put aside.

Next, cut the ends off the zucchini and then skin it. Now slice the zucchini as thinly as you can, at least Cooking: less than 1/10” thick and put aside. Surprisingly, all this will fit into a regular Dutch oven. I’ll assume a scale of 0-10 for the heat (0 Chop one toe of garlic into thin slices and put being off, 10 is max). aside. You don’t need to do anything to the other toe right now. Pour in the soy sauce and the brown sugar. Set the heat to 7 and stir until the sugar melts. The liquid Chop the dried chilies into strips no more than ¼” should also appear to be slightly bubbling at this wide. Put this aside along with the seeds. point. Add all the thinly-sliced onion and the thinlysliced garlic. Also add 1 tablespoon of chili powder. Chop the celery into ¼” thick chunks. Stir to mix evenly and allow the mixture to start sizzling. Chop the carrots into chunks. Increase the thickness from ¼” at the fat end, to almost 1” at the Now throw in the mushrooms and stir slowly until thin end. the mushrooms begin to darken. If necessary, you can add a little water to prevent the mixture from Cut the bok choy in half lengthwise down the spine drying. This should take no more than 5 minutes. then chop it into inch wide pieces and put aside. PAGE 18

Remove from heat. Now quickly remove as much of the mushroom as possible and put aside. You’ll be adding them back later but you don’t want them to break up from stewing too long. Now put the remaining mixture back on the burner and lower the heat to 5. Add 1 cup of water and stir until the water just begins to boil and then add in about 1/3 of the zucchini and stir until it just begins to boil. Add 1 more cup of water and stir until it just begins to boil, then add in another 1/3 of the zucchini. Add 1 more cup of water (this makes 3 total), stir until it just begins to boil, then add in the remaining zucchini. Stir until it just begins to boil and then turn Take the 2nd toe of garlic and cut into 2 equal the heat down to 3. parts. Crush both with the flat of a knife and add to Add the ground ginger, all the cloves, 1 tablespoon the mixture. Put in the rest of the white and black pepper and the chili powder and stir well. Add the of white pepper, 1 tablespoon of black pepper, stir to mix evenly and then cover. Check back every 10 carrots. Cover and let simmer for another 10 minutes or so to stir the mixture making sure to not minutes. let anything stick to the bottom and burn. If it appears that the liquid is boiling vigorously enough to boil over, turn the heat down a little. You might also want to make sure that the cover doesn’t seal too well. After about an hour, you will have to add in 1 more cup of water. Stir well to mix and then cover again. Keep checking back every 10 minutes to stir. By this point you should see that the zucchini is naturally breaking up. After about 90 minutes or so, most of the zucchini should be dissolved and the mixture is a brownish color. Add in one last cup of water and stir to mix evenly. Turn the heat down to 2.

Now add the potatoes and onion chunks and stir everything. Cover and let simmer for at least 10 20 minutes until the potatoes just begin to cook on the outside. Add in the celery, cover and let simmer for 10 minutes. Now add the mushrooms back in, add the broccoli, stir and simmer covered for 10 minutes. Finally, add the bok choy. You may have to stuff it in. Make sure you stir the bok choy into the liquid. Cook uncovered for no more than 5 minutes until the bok choy softens slightly and then remove the Dutch oven from the heat. Let it cool for about 5 minutes and you are done. Serve with homemade bread.

Peter Sodhy and his wife Leah Launey own and run Three Rivers Bed & Breakfast in California’s Sequoia Country. Click to see Video!



Confit Tomatoes with Fresh Thyme


By Chef Ivan Flowers, Five Star Executive Chef of Top of the Market in San Diego, California. Makes 32 Pieces. Listen to Chef Ivan Flowers on Big Blend Radio!

8 Ripe Roma Tomatoes 1 Gallon Boiling Water Âź Cup Canola Oil 10 Sprigs Fresh Thyme 1 Teaspoon Granulated Garlic Ice Bath (bowl of cold water and ice) Salt Pepper Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Cut out core from top of tomatoes and place in large colander or steaming basket. Place basket with tomatoes into the boiling water for 45 seconds. Remove and immediately plunge into the ice bath. Let sit in ice bath for two minutes. Remove and peel skin off tomatoes. Cut peeled tomatoes into quarters and place on a baking sheet. Drizzle with the canola oil, sprinkle with the garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Finally lay the sprigs of thyme over the tomatoes. Cook in the 200 degree oven for two hours. Remove thyme sprigs before serving.

The Good Luck Tomato According to Victorian folklore, when a family moved into a new home, a fresh tomato was placed on the mantle to ward off evil spirits and bring prosperity to the new homeowners. If tomatoes were not in season a good-luck tomato was made from fabric and stuffed with sawdust. Since pins were valuable in that era, if one was found it was stuck into the good luck symbol.


Storing & Pouring Wine By Howard Milstein As we enjoy all of the tempting wine purchases we have made, a rather obvious question would be "How should I store these gems?" (Assuming, of course that we will not be drinking everything the day that we buy them!) This may seem like a wine connoisseur's problem, when in fact it is really an every man's enjoyable and well needed project to ponder upon. If you are not in the position to have a wine cellar in your home, the best way to store your wine is to purchase a wine refrigerator or cooler as we like to call them. These come in various makes and brands and either have a dual climate system installed for white and red wine, or just one central climate control for handling both. The latter is a little bit less expensive but by all means no sacrifice in terms of quality of storage. The ideal storing temperature (particularly for aging red wine) is about 56◦­57◦ F. (13◦­14◦ c. respectively). This is what we call "cellar temperature" because theoretically, a good wine cellar in your home should be this temperature or slightly cooler if controlled electrically.

White wine is ideally drunk and tasted at "room" temperature (like red wine) to appreciate its taste and flavors to the utmost. However, many like it a bit colder which is one of the benefits of a dual climate wine refrigerator. As for those of you with home cellars, I say drink it at the cellar temperature and try to enjoy it at that temperature. I try advising people that drinking white wine too cold will mask its inherent qualities; it's like drinking soda or water.

As such, red wine when served in its bottle will have a somewhat cool touch to it. As for white wine, while a single zone climate refrigerator or your cellar may store it a bit warmer than what you may prefer drinking it at, the temperature is fine and I am always fascinated and a bit concerned when accurate for storage and aging and it can always ordering bottles of wine at a restaurant that does be slightly chilled a bit longer in your regular not have a temperature controlled cellar. Hence, refrigerator before drinking if you prefer. you receive a bottle of wine that is at least 64­65◦ or higher when it arrives at your table. Not only is Great wine cellars are usually situated in the this obviously too warm for white wine, it can be basement of a home as the temperature should disastrous with regard to reds; they lose their always be somewhat cooler down there. Don't balance and textural attributes. NEVER be afraid of worry if the temperature goes down even to 50◦ or red wine being drunk with a slight chill; for lighter a bit lower; we are more interested in keeping the wines they can be a blessing in disguise. For all wine cool rather than letting it get too warm. others have no fear: within a half hour or more of Speaking of which, many people are not aware of breathing time, red wine will come up to its correct the 'proper' temperatures for drinking wine. Your drinking temperature. Though all of this may seem red wine should ideally be consumed at no more than 63◦ F, which after letting the wine breathe for a a bit confusing or a 'pain' for people to enjoy good wine, the more time you work towards these ideals good while should bring it up considerably from its the more fun it actually becomes! storage temperature of 57◦ F. PAGE 22

Below I have listed some of the better WINE REFRIGERATORS currently available for purchase. Besides build quality, price will often depend to an extent on how many bottles of wine the unit will hold. 1. Newair 21 Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Refrigerator 2. Whynter Wine Refrigerator 3. Kalorik Wine Refrigerator 4. Danby Wine Refrigerators 5. Wine Enthusiast silent refrigerator Throwing a Wine Tasting Party at Home? For us wine aficionados, it's always fun to have a party with your favorite friends and favorite wines. Here is a tip that will bring out the greatest enjoyment at your next wine tasting party at home. First off, pick 2 or 3 reds and white’s and even let your friends bring their special bottles that they love. In the case of the host, try to get something that many people may never have tasted or even know of. On the other hand, it's fun to intersperse some known standards with the "rarer" wines thereby getting your knowledgeable allies all the more excited (or perturbed) when they discover something they thought they knew and were either pleasantly surprised or even dumbfounded when they find out what the wine is! And how is this fun all accomplished? By BAGGING the wines fully as in a blind tasting at home with the friends and connoisseurs. That's how we buy many new wines for my business and not only is it a great learning experience but boy will you have fun at your next upcoming home wine party! So much so that you won't be able to wait for the next gathering (probably and hopefully with a friend who might blind taste you on a 1982 Chateau Haut-Brion)!

Listen to Howard & Ruth Milstein talk about Wine on Big Blend Radio!

Enjoy, drink and be merry! Howard and Ruth Milstein are a husband-wife food and wine expert team. Howard his the wine expert and his wife Ruth Milstein is the author of recipe book 'Cooking with Love: Ventures into the New Israeli Cuisine.’ Visit PAGE 23


Kitchen Utensil Tricks Tablespoons, Chef Knives and Peelers - Oh My!

By Chef Jeremy Manley ‘San Diego’s Sustainable Chef’ Have you ever made pancakes without eggs? Have you started cooking your meal only to realize you don’t have the proper cookware to complete your breakfast? Have you only had enough cream for one of the two coffees you make every morning? Man’s recorded episodes of trials and errors when put in these situations have been documented over the years.

Other simple spooning tricks: Once cut open, you can seed many vegetables, like squash or cucumber, with a spoon. You can clean scales off fish by running your spoon in the opposite direction that the scales naturally lay, and then rinse the fish off under running water. You can heat a spoon under warm water and use it to make a roll of ice cream from an ice cream bucket for a nifty looking quinal. Keep extra spoons in a cup by your stove top to use for tasting. Sample all you cook and taste from beginning to end. See if you can taste the flavors developing and play around with new herbs and seasoning while monitoring their progression.

Becoming a successful home cook or a chef requires adaptation. We receive a basket of ingredients with only a few tools and want to make the best out of what we have to work with. KNIVES One glorious chef knife is all you need. One Santoku knife or one large German forged chef SPOONS knife will not only protect you from burglars and An oversized tablespoon or basting spoon is my home invasions, but also prevent you from cutting second best friend in the kitchen, besides the yourself. A dull knife is a dangerous knife. Most dishwasher. When cooking a steak or chicken breast in a sauté pan, there are juices that disperse people cut themselves while cutting an onion because of force. With your properly sharpened from the protein while cooking, and waste away in knife, a bend of the wrist and pulling movement in the bottom of your sauté pan. Use a tablespoon to your arm will give you the look of a chef and scoop up the juice and place on top of the chicken while you are still cooking. This technique is called confidence to try your own techniques. is a great place to look for chef basting. It reinforces the flavor, and pushes the juice back into the meat you are sautéing, resulting knives, and because I prefer Santoku Japanese knives for their thin blades and multi-functional in a juicier protein for you and your loved ones to design, I recommend Shun and Global. eat. PAGE 24

Other simple chef knife tricks: Peel ginger with the back side of your knife. Crush a clove of garlic by pressing down with the side of your knife, and use the crushed garlic for stock, flavoring soup, tea or risotto. Crack lobster claws with the back side of the knife. When cleaning a cutting board do not use the blade of your knife to scrape as this will dull your knife faster. Never soak your knifes in water, run them through the dishwasher or leave them dirty for long periods of time as this will dull the blades quickly and show signs of a beginner chef.

Other simple Y-shaped peeler tricks: Peel Yukon Gold potatoes for smooth mashed potatoes. Shave a carrot for a ribbon-like salad garnish to dress up your salad for a more festive look. When peeling a cucumber, shave a strip off and rotate to make a zebra stripe and unique presentation.

Chef Jeremy Manley is the executive chef and owner of Jeremy’s on the Hill California Style Bistro, located in Julian, up in San Diego California’s mountains. He is known for serving fresh, seasonal, organic, healthy, local and PEELERS outstanding cuisine. Visit A Y-shaped peeler is one of my top 10 kitchen tools because of mobility, how simple its sole purpose in life is, and it cleans in a jiffy. It is designed for optimum control and mobility with very little work. It can peel a soft kiwi without damaging the juicy flesh of the delightful green and black seeded gem, as well as a celery root with bumps and thick hard skin that grows in the ground. For less than $4 a pop this is a must in every kitchen across the world.

Click to see Video! Knives & Knife Safety


Click to see Video! It’s About the Garlic!

Listen to Chef Jeremy Manley on Big Blend Radio!


Organizing Your Kitchen and Garage Tools Come in All Shapes & Sizes! By Regina Leeds ‘The Zen Organizer’ Traditional Kitchen Zones We all engage in the same activities in our kitchens in order to reap the reward of enjoying something delicious. We prep food; cook it; store leftovers; wash the tools that made it all possible; and, if we’re so inclined, some of us bake as well. Each of these activities comes with tools that make that activity easier. Why wouldn’t we have all the items we need for prep together and separate from baking? Or keep clean-up items away from pots and pans? Usually the most common reason traces back to moving day. Are you surprised? Let’s face it: moving day tends to be chaotic. One of your helpers is going to be thinking how nice it would be for you to make a meal in your new home ASAP. Boxes are opened and items get tossed into cupboards pretty much without rhyme or reason. Unless you have an extremely organized person in charge, the goal will be to put things away and get boxes out of the house as quickly as possible. You can ‘get organized later.’ Unfortunately later never comes. Everyday needs take over. Getting organized is pushed into the shadows. And then it gets more complicated when you start entertaining! A small bevy of helpful souls will descend on your kitchen after dinner to wash everything and put it away. Rarely does anyone ask: “Where does this go?” Once again the goal is to slam items into the dark recesses of cupboards and drawers with the idea ‘you will get organized later.’ What’s a person to do! I’m so glad you asked. The Magic Formula to the Rescue! Organizing a kitchen is a big job. Depending on the size it can take 2 to 3 hours or more likely most of the day. It’s a great winter weekend project. Be sure your family either has plans for the day outside the home so you can spread your work out and not have to stop and make a meal or prepare a snack.

Categorize items as you go along so you know exactly what you have in the way of prep, cook, store or bake. Use your label maker with abandon on shelves and in drawers. Organize your categories so that each occupies the most logical place in the kitchen. Traditionally pots and pans go as close to the oven as possible; dishes are on one side of the sink while glasses are on the other. In a drawer close to the dishes you always find the silverware. Potholders are traditionally found in a drawer near the stove. Continue this standard blueprint going by keeping all related items together in cupboards. Store related tools near the designated cupboard. Why have your rolling pin in the same drawer as your garlic press? If you are blessed with extra space like a garage, a basement or attic, consider keeping once a year use items like the turkey roaster there if the kitchen is filled to the rafters. Do you have an extra set of dishes in the kitchen that are only used on special occasions? See if your dining room hutch or closet can take the set. And keep it all in tidy padded storage holders available at the Container Store. You’ll find detailed help in the pages of One Year to an Organized Life.

Is there a car in your garage? I’m willing to bet cold, hard cash the response is a resounding: ’NO!’ It seems that the vast majority of families use the garage for storage rather than for the car. If you live in a temperate climate, it’s not a problem but if you’re in a cold, snowy state, the car really does need a home. What’s in the average Here in a nutshell is what you need to do: garage? It’s usually a repository for all the items we just don’t wish to make a decision about because in - Eliminate what you no longer need, want or use. some way we have an emotional tie. The answer is Donate suitable items to a charity or a women’s to set aside a day or preferably a weekend and shelter. Feel free to toss the expired food goods or enlist some help. Follow the Magic Formula to that rusty old potato peeler that grandma left you in success. The tools in this room need to be her will. categorized just like the ones in the kitchen! PAGE 26

Here are a few tips to help you reach your goal: - If you have a lot of items to toss, rent a dumpster. - If you can’t afford built-ins from your local closet company, buy a few bakers racks from a store like Bed Bath & Beyond (and use a discount coupon). You can also go to your local home store and get inexpensive shelving designed specifically for the garage. These units keep categories together, off the floor and easy to access. - Replace cardboard boxes with sturdier containers. Critters love paper products. - If you have electronic items to toss, find out how your community handles such disposal. Don’t toss them into the dumpster. - Tell your neighbors what you intend to do. You might inspire them to join you. A spring or summer group yard sale might be in your future.


Regina Leeds talks Organizing on Big Blend Radio!

Plan a reward! Both of these projects require time and energy but that is exactly what they are going to save you in the long run. If you are a couple, maybe one of you could work on the kitchen while the other tackles the garage? With the current craze for discounted services from coupon websites, I bet you can find a reward tailored to both of you. My suggestion would be to find a masseuse who will come to your home and tend to your tired muscles.

- If you’re handy put in a loft for storage. Or fly some items with a pulley system you can check out Regina Leeds ‘The Zen Organizer’ has been at your local home store. organizing clients for over 20 years. Named 'Best Organizer in L.A.' by Los Angeles - Do you have bikes and brooms? There are Magazine. She is the author of 9 books on the special ways to store them that will keep them from subject including New York Times best seller falling onto the floor in a messy heap. Check out ‘One Year to an Organized Life’. Visit The Container Store for ideas.

Check out our new Vimeo Channels. As we cross the country on our Big Blend Spirit of America Tour of all 400+ National Parks, we film and produce videos of all kinds. Here are just some of our Channels - enjoy! Click on the banners below!


OPEN SESAME The Story of Seeds One of the world's most precious resources is at risk. OPEN SESAME: THE STORY OF SEEDS, from award-winning filmmaker M. Sean Kaminsky, is a timely and compelling film illuminating what's at stake and what can be done to protect the source of nearly all our food. Seeds provide the basis of everything from fabrics and food to fuels; in fact, they're as essential to life as the air we breathe or water we drink...but given far less attention. According to the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN), approximately 90 percent of the fruit and vegetable varieties that existed one hundred years ago, no longer exist today. Heritage grain is near extinction. And seeds that were lovingly nurtured over decades -- or even hundreds of years ago -- have been lost forever. More troubling, seeds have also shifted from being common heritage to sovereign property; corporations are co-opting seed genetics and hiding behind patent law in the process. Today, corporate-owned seed accounts for 82% of the world-wide market, allowing transgenic seeds (or GMOs) to spread exponentially. OPEN SESAME looks at the extraordinary challenges that seeds face today, placing our food supply at risk and threatening our farms. Telling the story of seeds by following the challenges and triumphs of some of the most dedicated stewards and advocates, OPEN SESAME introduces viewers to a diverse range of individuals whose lives center around seeds: farmers, renegade gardeners, passionate seed savers, artists and activists, who are all working tirelessly, planting the seeds of information and inspiration to tell the story of one of our most precious resources. It's not too late...yet.


Listen to M. Shaw Kaminsky on Big Blend Radio!

Click to see Video!

Learn more at


Roses for Spring! Our rosarian friends Chris VanCleave ‘Redneck Rosarian’ and Teresa Byington, hosts of the popular Rose Chat Podcast, joined us on Big Blend Radio to discuss planting and caring for roses in spring, and their obsession with David Austin roses. Listen to their interview with us, and read Teresa’s rose planting tips below. You can keep up with their podcast at Teresa’s Tips on Planting Roses for Spring For late March or early April planting, I buy bare root roses from online vendors. When they arrive they are “bare roots” wrapped in wet newspaper and plastic. I immediately unpack them and soak them in a bucket of Moo Poo tea for 24 hours before planting. Grafted Roses: Most hybrid teas, floribunda and grandifloras are grafted roses. That means that a rose is created by being grafted onto strong, hardy root stock creating a “bud union.” Plant the bud union (knobby part just above the roots) 2-3” below the soil line.


Listen to Chris VanCleave & Teresa Byington on Big Blend Radio!

Own Root Roses: Roses that have not been grafted but started from cuttings, so there is no bud union to protect. Plant as you would any other shrub. Soil: We ask roses to bloom for us all summer, year after year, so it is best to give them a good start by planting them in good soil. Dig a hole deeper and wider than your roots. To the soil you remove, add compost and a quality grade of top soil. Your roses will appreciate more nutrients and better drainage! My soil is mostly clay so we dig very deep and very wide! (I usually go about 18″ X 18″). It is always a good idea to have your soil tested. See your county extension office for a soil kit test or they can be purchased at most any garden center.

Plants of Horror!


Listen to Steve Schneickert’s Big Blend Radio segment as he recalls the Hollywood History of Plants in Horror Films including: Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, The Day of the Triffids, The Shining, Little Shop of Horrors (as pictured), Invasion of the Body Snatchers, and more!

In the Little Shop of Horrors, Audrey Jr. Is a man eating plant that is a cross between a Venus Flytrap and a Butterwort. Photo of a Venus Flytrap by: Noah Elhardt PAGE 29

In An English Country Garden Garden Destinations in Norfolk, England

By Glynn G. Burrows, Norfolk Tours “In an English Country Garden” is a lovely song, and one which always conjures up a picture in my head of the cottage gardens which I knew when I was a child. In those days, everyone grew their own vegetables and flowers and neatly trimmed box hedges lined the cinder paths.


Listen to Glynn Burrows on Big Blend Radio!

Chickens were always hidden around the back of the cottages and sometimes, if there was a greenhouse tucked up against the side wall, there We are so lucky that we have so many ancient could even be cucumbers and tomatoes in the greenhouses! I loved the smells! Nothing beats the gardens in England. Many of the gardens smell and taste of fresh fruit and vegetables and for associated with our Country Houses, date from me, fresh tomato sandwiches always transport me Tudor times and some which are attached to Castles, Monasteries or other Churches and back to the days of summer harvest fields, with stubble pricking my bare legs (us boys always wore ancient buildings, date back over 1,000 years. shorts) and the smell of the dust and straw. During Farming and horticulture are very important parts of the harvest, we seldom saw our Dad at home as he our heritage and we have so many fantastic places was working from dawn till dusk so we always took to visit for those interested in plants, both cultivated him his tea into the fields and we had ours with him and wild. When we are walking along the footpaths, lanes and roadways in our villages, it is often the too! Even today, if I am eating a tomato sandwich case that we are walking beside hedge-rows and and ask my wife Diane, “Where am I?” she laughs boundaries which date to Roman times and earlier. and says “In the harvest field!” PAGE 30

I will just tell you about a couple of such places in my area and hope to whet your appetite to come over and take a look at some real English Country Gardens. I have often spoken about the private home of Her Majesty The Queen at Sandringham, but I haven’t really told you about the magnificent grounds which surround the house. The Park covers some 243 hectares and most of that area is open to the public at all reasonable times, but the grounds of the House itself covers around 24 hectares and is only open at certain times. The gardens contain many trees which were planted by important guests and family members during visits and for special occasions and the selection of plants is something to see. To say that these gardens are fit for a King and Queen is a slight understatement as most of the Crowned Heads of Europe and many of the World’s most famous and important people have walked around the paths admiring the beautiful grounds. The beautiful lakes, flowerbeds and lawns are wonderful to stroll around any time of the year. The Walled Garden covers nearly seven hectares and used to grow fruit and vegetables for the house. It still grows fruit, vegetables and flowers used on the estate but it also produces many plants which are on sale in the estate shop. If you want to stay on the estate, you can stay in the Gardener's Cottage which is in the walled garden. The accommodation is self-catering but it is a beautiful setting! If you love your gardening, the Sandringham gardens are definitely the place to visit to get some great ideas. The other garden which I will tell you about is at nearby Heacham, where Pocahontas was Lady of the Manor.

Housed in an old Watermill, this garden is called Norfolk Lavender and this is home to the National Collection of Lavenders and there are over 100 different specimens. The gardens not only have Lavenders but they also contain many of the old herbs which used to be used in medicines as well as cooking. Talking of medicines, many of the medieval monasteries had their own herb gardens as this was where many of the early hospitals were and remember, village folk used herbal remedies for most ailments up to very recent times. The cafe and gift-shop is quite amazing as it is unbelievable to see just how many different things you can buy which contain Lavender. I thought it was just for perfumed drawer liners but apart from the perfumes, oils, hand-creams and soaps, you can also buy cakes, chocolate, scones and many other foods which contain Lavender. Although I don’t eat sweet items, I have been told that the chocolate, and other food items are actually surprisingly very tasty! Glynn Burrows is the owner of Norfolk Tours in England. If you would like advice about tracing your family history, need someone in England to do some look-ups or take some photographs for you, or are thinking about taking a vacation to England, contact Glynn and visit


Masses of Blooms Make-Over the Deserts By Nancy J. Reid Waiting for just the right amount of moisture, warmish days and cool nights, thousands of seeds lay lightly covered with sand, waiting to burst through their outer layer and dazzle the deserts with even more color than the sunrises and sunsets. No year is ever the same. Sometimes the blooms cover massive areas, and sometimes you have to discover their hiding places. The weather controls the display-too much rain will wash the seeds away, too little will inhibit germination. Rain too early or too late just doesn’t count. Temperatures too high will scorch seedlings, too much wind will dry them out, cold weather or a freeze can ruin new blossoms, but just a bit of cool in the evenings will keep aggressive grasses and mustard seedlings from taking over. Depending on the location and elevation of the desert, late February through March is usually the best time to enjoy the desert wildflowers. But there are lots of cactus that bloom a bit later and blooming times differ in the high desert areas. Blooming at different times is nature’s way of making sure that those who feed from the wildflowers have food throughout the year.

You can use Wildflower Hotlines to help you plan your excursion for the optimum viewing time, but sometimes going earlier or later than others is even more enjoyable if you like more solitude as you walk through the blossoms. Roadsides lined with colorful blossoms will entice you to investigate, and National and State parks, public lands and wildlife refuges are the best places to view the flowers. Besides being beautiful, the wildflowers play an important role in the desert landscape. Even though they look fragile, they hold soil in place with their root systems, provide food and shelter for animals, birds and insects. For that reason, it is great to carry a camera to photograph rather than pick the flowers.

Shape, Size, Color & Leaf Nature has a reason for everything, it is a great puzzle, but all the pieces fit. Flowers attract forms of life by their shape, color, size and accessibility. We are mesmerized by the beauty of the blooms, often forgetting that most of our medicines come from plant life. Shape & Size: Yes, size matters, a lot–but so does shape. Diversity in the shape and size is another way nature ensures a variety of animals, birds and insects will find shelter and food from the flowers, and that no one species of flower will be overused– however, the flowers gain from those who use them. The birds, insects and animals pay the flowers back for their bounty, by spreading the pollen of the flowers from one flower to another. Beetles are not the most agile fliers, so they need flowers that provide an easy landing pad, flowers that are open and flat or bowl shaped, They need flowers where the nectar is easy to access, but they also eat the petals and leaves. Although they damage the flowers, they are the biggest group of pollinators.

Hawkmoths are superior pollinators that look very much like hummingbirds. Watch for them at dusk. Photo: IronChris PAGE 32

Butterflies and more adept at flying, and they have a long proboscis so they can get to nectar hidden deeper in flowers, but they still appreciate a flat, more open flower. Hummingbirds and hawkmoths can hover and with their long narrow bills or long proboscis, they can access nectar in tubular flowers. The moths tend to come out at dusk and are mostly nocturnal, so they search for flowers that do not close up when the sun begins to fade. Bats are strictly night-feeders searching for night blooming and none-closing flowers. Color: Birds, bees and butterflies are more attracted to brightly colored flowers, whereas bats, beetles, flies and moths like the duller, pale colors. Don’t be fooled here, there is a bright white and a dull white, just like in your laundry. Some insects and birds see colors in the ultraviolet end of the spectrum that are invisible to humans. Wildflowers have honey or nectar guides and they direct pollinators to the parts of the flower where nectar and pollen are available. The pollinators eat the nectar and carry the pollen to the next flower. Leaf: Leaves come in all shapes, textures and designs. They can be smooth, shiny, hairy or downy. Their edges can be smooth or toothed and they have distinct vein patterns in the center of each leaf. Some come in pairs or leaflets, running up along the stems of the flowers, while others hug the base of the plant, leaving the stem bare. Look at how the leaves are arranged if they travel up the stem, are they arranged opposite to each other? Or, do they alternate from side to side. Some leaves climb up the stem in a circular fashion.

Identifying wildflowers is easier than ever. The internet has databases with photos, there are plenty of field guides on the market, and there are even apps you can download on your phone. If you take note of the shape, size, color and leaf pattern, you will be able to identify the wildflowers within minutes. While enjoying the beauty of the desert wildflowers, watch for the pollinators that partner with the plants. Neither can exist without the other. Wildflowers support entire eco-systems, with birds, bees, bats butterflies, beetles and even small mammals depending on their nectar, seeds and pollen for their food. In fact, we ourselves cannot exist without the very same pollinators, so we have a direct connection to the wildflowers and their partners. Their fate, is the same as ours. We need those pollinators to help our food crops. According to the United States Department of Agriculture: “Of the 1,400 crop plants grown around the world, i.e., those that produce all of our food and plant-based industrial products, almost 80% require pollination by animals. Visits from bees and other pollinators also result in larger, more flavorful fruits and higher crop yields. In the United States alone, pollination of agricultural crops is valued at 10 billion dollars annually. Globally, pollination services are likely worth more than 3 trillion dollars.� For more information visit: http:/

Click to see Video! Wildflower Wonderland!


Spring Cleaning a Negative Self-Image By Bobbi DePorter Spring is just around the corner, which means it’s spring cleaning time. Parents, it’s also a perfect time to help your son or daughter do a little spring cleaning on any self-image issues they may be carrying around. It’s a fact that most young people have a delicate psyche. Kids, from tweens through teens, are extremely conscious of their self-image and how other people view them. Comments made to them, whether harsh, sarcastic or completely unintentional, can have negative and lasting effects. "In seventh grade, Maddie's English teacher told her she was stupid. Instead of trying to understand Maddie's dyslexia, the teacher would comment about her horrible spelling in front of the class. Even though Maddie qualified for a gifted-level English class, the teacher kept insinuating that she didn't belong. At the end of the semester, the teacher gave her a D, the lowest grade she'd ever gotten. The blow to Maddie's self-esteem was devastating. Her grades in other classes began to slip. Her social world began to shrink. She lost her enthusiasm for school, friends, and activities."

The common thread among them is avoidance. Whether they withdraw, conform, or hide behind an image, they're trying to duck from somebody they don't want to deal with: themselves. At the heart of this issue is negative self-image. For a kaleidoscope of reasons, teens can end up feeling bad about themselves – or about a particular aspect of themselves. They may become afraid to show their true selves - sometimes even to their parents.

Parents are alarmed when their teenagers withdraw into a shell. Some parents recall their sons or daughters being enthusiastic and outgoing until a particular incident triggered a shutdown. Others, with sons or daughters who have always been a little on the shy side, worry that their shyness is keeping them from growing and experiencing life. Image Isn’t Everything There are also those kids who are not so much withdrawn as they are caught up in maintaining an image. They spend a lot of time and energy being the tough guy, the glamour girl, or the most outrageous, and not much time being themselves. Some young people with low self-esteem are easily coerced by peer pressure into doing things against their will: drugs, bullying, and playing hooky. And there are those who pour a lot of energy into avoiding peer pressure. They conform to what they think is normal and avoid doing anything that might make them stick out. PAGE 34

Everybody goes through this kind of thing at some level. Most of the time, it's an event or a phase. Other times, it's a downward spiral. That's when it becomes potentially damaging to teens – and terrifying to parents. Not Perfect Equals No Good Sometimes, when young people are exploring their identities and the way they present themselves to the world, they realize that they've gotten locked into the belief that they need to be perfect. They discover that they've been thinking in black and white. If they're not pretty enough, they're ugly. If they're too fat, too thin, or don't have the right clothes, they're worthless. They have to look good all the time or they'll be called out as losers.

Maddie, whose teacher told her she was dumb, decided she wanted to be the kind of person who was inspired to do great things. Her little bit of shyness and reservation disappeared. It was replaced by self-confidence and self-assuredness. The girl who was once told she was too stupid to be in the gifted English class went on to ace AP English along with AP Calculus and Physics - and also won four consecutive awards for community service.

Duncan was a boy who was ostracized because he marched to a different drummer and was always inventing things and asking questions. With a great deal of positive support from his parents, he decided to embrace the things that made him different, such as his natural curiosity and inquiring When they explore what's motivating this obsession mind. He convinced himself that he wouldn’t let with being perfect, they often discover that it's fear. social conventions hold him back from having a great life. He embarked on pathways few have They're afraid their peers will judge them by their traveled, including graduating with a triple major flaws - and often they're right. from Tufts University. What's perfection costing them? People who get onto the "perfect" track avoid situations that could expose them when they're looking less than perfect. They forget that when people are doing something for the first time, they're probably not going to do it perfectly - and they're going to look a little awkward while they're learning to do it. But since many are afraid of looking uncool, they shy away from trying anything new. The bottom line is when teens obsess about perfection, they're focusing on things that have nothing to do with who they really are. When they realize that the unique, complex, terrific person inside them isn't getting a chance to be known, appreciated, or developed, they begin to look at their fear of social situations, Positivity to the Rescue Young people with negative self-images really blossom when they and their parents keep a relentless focus on the positive - when they acknowledge every effort and celebrate every achievement. It's not just about praising them for what they've done, but also for who they are.

No one can teach confidence to a young person. Confidence is theirs to discover. But parents can make sure that the evidence of their sons' and daughters' greatness is all around them - that it's recognized and acknowledged. In time, everyone will start to see and realize their own potential.

Bobbi DePorter is the President of SuperCamp and Quantum Learning Network, a U.S.-based educational firm producing programs for students, teachers, Positivity snowballs over time: success builds on schools, and success. After a while, it reaches a tipping point. Negative self-image falls away and the unstoppable organizations across the United States and dynamo within the individual surges ahead. Once kids acquire a taste for success, once they see how worldwide. SuperCamp is the leading academic much they're really capable of doing, there's no summer camp in the world. Visit stopping them. PAGE 35

THE CHILDREN OF NOW... EVOLUTION How We Can Support the FastForward Evolution of Our Children and All of Humanity For the past few years, a new kind of highly intelligent, sensory-expanded children have been joining our population. They are a clear break from the continuity of past generations...and many times their minds are leaps ahead of ours! However, they perceive the world differently than we do, they often see and hear what we do not, and they react in what would be to us "unfathomable" ways. And while the minds of this future generation of humanity is changing in spectacular and positive ways, these youngsters are finding it challenging to live and be accepted in today's world. Not only are they not encouraged, but sometimes they are misdiagnosed as overactive, depressed, autistic, ADD, ADHD, bipolar and having Asperger's Syndrome. Parents, schools and society are failing to understand, nurture and support these children because they are so different from previous experience.


These Children of Now need a whole new approach to find their rightful place in our world today. They also need help in adjusting and thriving in the world as it exists--a world which they are helping to change...And now help is on the way with Meg Blackburn Losey's remarkable new book The Children of Now Evolution, a follow-up to her bestselling book The Children of Now. Losey revisits these spectacular children and discusses who they are becoming and how their growing influence is changing society for the better. Losey offers concrete information for parents, schools, and others to understand what these kids need and how to help them function and flourish. She also addresses the alternate realities that these children (and others) perceive. There may not be monsters in the closet or under the bed, but these highly-evolved children may actually be "seeing" things that their parents or caregivers cannot. Finally, she paints a picture of what our world will look like when the "Children of Now" take over. Meg Blackburn Losey, PhD, is the author of the international bestseller The Children of Now along with several other books including Conversations with the Children of Now, The Art of Living Out Loud, and The Secret History of Consciousness. Dr. Meg is an international keynote speaker and lectures worldwide and has served as a consultant to Good Morning America and 20/20. Visit her online at

Listen to Dr. Meg Losey’s Big Blend Radio interview! PAGE 36


Herbal Cleansing for Spring By Cynthia Johnston Spring has sprung and the dust cloths are out. As tulips and crocuses bloom, I am filled with a desire to organize, to clean closets, wash curtains, and dust all the hidden corners. As well as my house, I also feel a need to “spring clean” my body. I know that in my garden there is a bounty of wonderful medicinal herbs that will help in this endeavor. As I look out of my window into my beautiful herb garden I see chickweed, dandelions, plantain, burdock, violets and comfrey beginning to pop up everywhere. Everything I need for my rejuvenating beauty cleanse.

Listen to Cynthia Johnston’s Big Blend Radio Interview!

Our skin is the largest organ of our bodies and a significant indicator of our total health. When our skin glows, our eyes are clear, our tone vibrant - we know that we are in good health. I definitely recommend using creams to nourish our skin on the outside but this exterior “food for the skin” is only part of what is necessary to have a gorgeous glow, radiant skin, shiny hair and strong nails. When we look pale, have dark circles and puffy This process creates what is called a "medicine eyes, these are indicators of toxicity. tea." Chickweed is a rich source of minerals… essential in any cleanse. As we clean the body we Just like the house, our bodies collect residue from also want to nourish it. The burdock is a powerful the foods and beverages we consume. An herbal blood cleanser. Cleansing the blood often clears up spring tonic tea can be very effective in clearing the skin. Dandelions assist in removing toxicity from many of the toxins. When we provide herbal the kidneys and liver, as well as being diuretic, and support in the form of teas, juice and food, we can a potent source of potassium. Dandelion root is get the jump-start we need to clear up our skin, often roasted and used as a coffee substitute often cleanse the blood, and nourish our organs and with burdock root added. Comfrey, also called glands. You can achieve this cleansing effect by knitbone, is used for internal as well as external modifying your diet to consist mainly of raw foods hurts. It promotes the growth of tissue and is useful and add lots of fresh juice, tea and wild greens in a on cuts as well as inflamed skin. salad. Dandelions are the most common greens we can all find in our yards or gardens. If you don’t With this wonderful herbal tonic…skin, hair, nails, spray or use chemical fertilizers you can simply and eyes will have a glow you’ve not experienced pick some and add to a spring salad mix. The in a long while. young greens are delicious!! The blossoms add color and have a slight radish taste. Cynthia Johnston is an herbalist and founder of


MoonMaid Botanicals, a small herb company that is dedicated to providing high quality herbal products that are free of chemical preservatives, propylparabens or synthetics of any kind. Products include remedies for menopause, PMS, yeast infections, common women’s health issues, and herbal products for the family. Learn more or shop online at PAGE 38

A wonderful cleansing tea might consist of dandelion greens, chickweed, burdock root, and comfrey. As I walk about my garden I can pick these plants fresh, and then chop them up to make into a tea. Place them in a half gallon mason jar, cover with nearly boiling water. Allow this to set overnight. In the morning drain the liquid from the herbs into another jar.

Yoga, Ballet and Pilates Works for All Ages 40, 50 or 60 is not what it used to be. Neither is 72! Can we have the same flexibility, muscle tone, balance, and weight at 72 that we have in our 20s or 30s? Janice Lennard proves we can. For Janice, age truly is only a number! She walks the talk, or more accurately, she dances, poses, pulses and stretches the talk every day, and she can tell us how we can, too! Her three DVDs, just released, Yoga with Janice Lennard, Ballet Barre with Janice Lennard and Mat Pilates are all available, and so is Janice for an interview on how to get and stay fit, avoid injuries, feel vital and at peace in our bodies and our minds, into our 70’s and beyond. Born in l942 in New Orleans, Janice has been involved with ballet, yoga, and pilates through study, practice, and instruction for over 65 years. She has retained the vigor and stamina of her youth – both in body and mind -- through her various practices and she wants to spread the word about the amazing benefits she has personally experienced and has helped her thousands of clients achieve. She is living proof that certain exercises -- practiced regularly and accurately– no matter at what age we begin -- will pay off as we get older. From World Gym in Palm Desert to nursing homes in La Quinta, Southern California – 20 something’s to 90 something’s, Janice travels from gyms to private clubs to nursing homes, helping people of all ages and stages get into shape, stay in shape, recover form debilitating illness, and regain or maintain their flexibility. In addition to her weekly classes, Janice works with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to instruct MS students on the benefits of yoga. As a volunteer, she also teaches a unique class she calls, “Music & Motion,” which she has designed for those who wish to learn yoga, but have limited mobility and must exercise while seated in an ordinary chair or in a wheel chair. Learn more at PAGE 39


Listen to Big Blend Radio’s Interview with Janice Lennard!

Fat to Fearless Enjoy Permanent Weight Loss and End Emotional Eating… For Good!’ Asher Fox thought that becoming a personal fitness trainer would give him the tools, motivation and activity to conquer his yo-yo weight gain. And at 22, starting with only $300 left over from student loans, he built one of the largest personal training businesses in the state of Florida with multiple locations and a host of trainers working for him. But it's hard to maintain your credibility with clients, when you reach 300 pounds-just as Asher did at his peak. Working in the business could not inoculate him from his own lack of self-esteem and the things that were literally eating at him. And so he began his quest to find a permanent solution for himself and others. It led him to ultimately create the most comprehensive arsenal of psychological tools assembled to date, to overcome, convert and enroll the subconscious mind in the healing process. Fat to Fearless: Enjoy Permanent Weight Loss and End Emotional Eating...For Good! is what everyone who struggles with emotional eating has been waiting for. Why Fearless? “Because,” Fox says, “it is fear that lies at the heart of every emotional overeater… an often - unconscious fear that reinforces the desire to eat to avoid some aspect of pain. That's why reaching and changing the subconscious - which is exponentially more powerful than the conscious mind - is so critical.”


Listen to Big Blend Radio’s Interview with Asher Fox, C.Ht,.Sc.B.

Initially using himself as a test subject, Fox explored clinical hypnotherapy, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), cognitive behavioral techniques, EFT and more - disciplines in which he now holds a variety of advanced certifications. He has since become a member of the faculty of two institutions teaching the next generation of therapists and coaches. Thus, the book that contains his Fat to Fearless® system is far from a quick fix-change-your-diet, journal-what-you-eat, get-some-more-exercise, or fad weight-loss book. This 400-page manual and guide book is a full-on assault on the subconscious that requires from 8 to 12 weeks to do, if followed as directed. Every chapter is filled with illuminating information about how our subconscious minds can sabotage us and the very specific methods to transform it as an ally. PAGE 40

Attorney Insider Have you ever wondered what it is like to be an attorney? What kind of decisions they have to make every day? What kind of challenges do they have to overcome? We asked these questions and more of S. Ward Heinrichs, Esq., who is a shareholder and named partner of the San Diego based employment law firm, Backstrom & Heinrichs, Attorneys at Law, APC. The firm represents both employers and employees in almost all areas of labor law. 1. Why did you choose to become an attorney, and more specifically practice employment law? After four years in the Marine Corps as an artillery officer, I was looking for a different challenge. I wanted to try the world of business and law and went into law school with an open mind about how I would use my law degree.

S. Ward Heinrichs, Esq.

2. What attributes do you have that make you a good fit for your profession? My first job was as a criminal defense attorney. At first I drafted appeals but eventually represented clients in court. I still help employers who face white collar criminal charges from time to time. About fifteen years ago, I teamed up with a lawyer who practiced employment law. That’s what I’ve done ever since. Employment law is a large practice area, and it constantly changes. It’s very interesting, and I get great satisfaction from helping my clients with their often confusing employment law issues.

5. What is your pet peeve in regards to your business? Dealing with administrative issues. I like to practice law, not deal with day to day issues that divert my focus from what I do best.

3. Who or what inspires you? My mother inspires me. My parents got a divorce when I was a boy. She already had a Registered Nursing degree and worked days as an ER nurse, going to school at night. After finishing her Bachelor of Arts degree she got her Nurse Practitioner degree. She worked as a Nurse Practitioner until I went to college. While I was in college, she completed her Masters in Occupational Health, then worked for several big companies like Exxon and Quaker Oats. She spent the last 10 years of her career with Marriott Hotels until her retirement and now and lives very comfortably in Florida.

7. What do you consider your biggest challenge? Creating a competitive online presence and working hard to keep it competitive.

6. What personal changes have you had to make in order to grow your company? I have changed my approach to marketing many times over the years. Obviously social media is part of the “new age” marketing strategy. Because of its importance, I have had to open up my online personality.

8. If you could have a dinner party with three people (alive or passed), who would they be? Socrates, George Washington, Mom. Ancient man versus modern woman. 9. If you could switch careers for a day, what would you choose? Women’s Softball Head Coach at UCLA. I have two daughters who play a high caliber of softball at the pre-high school level, and I’ve managed several of their teams over the years. It would be fun to step it up and motivate players at a higher level.

4. Describe your perfect client. All my clients are perfect in their own unique way. Each has a legal problem that is important to them. In Southern 10. What is the most important tip you would California, they can choose many different pass on to another person just getting started employment lawyers, and I feel honored that a potential client would choose me to represent them. in the same career? Learn how to market effectively. In Southern California, business doesn’t just come to you. To learn more about Backstrom & Heinrichs, Attorneys at Law, APC, visit PAGE 41

A New Program for Emerging Travel Writers

IFWTWA Helps Launch Travel Writers by Susan Montgomery The International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA), a worldwide organization of experienced writers who publish regularly in both print and digital publications, has recently launched the Emerging Writers Program to guide new food, wine and travel writers through the process of writing and publishing in these topic areas. After working with a mentor to publish four articles, the participants then become eligible to apply for a regular membership in IFWTWA. The requirements for joining IFWTWA include publishing for at least two years with at least four articles published in the food, wine or travel topic areas during the past year. Those applicants with blogs must have been publishing for at least one year in these topic areas. Of course, all IFWTWA members must adhere to good grammar, spelling and clarity standards.

As an accepted participant in the Emerging Writers Program, you will have the following benefits:

All applicants to IFWTWA are vetted by our Chair of Membership and must be approved by the Board of Directors. Becoming a member of IFWTWA is a very desired goal for many writers because of the association’s numerous member benefits, including the opportunity to apply for exciting press trips and to post a professional profile on the organization’s website.

• You will be given access to an online guideline, written by IFWTWA members, on how to become a travel, food, or wine writer.

• You will be assigned a mentor who will work with you in the areas of writing, publishing, social media, and possibly photography and/or videos for the travel, food or wine markets.

• You may attend IFWTWA’s Annual Professional Development Conference, which this year will be a cruise from Boston to Montreal at the end of August.


• You will have the opportunity to submit articles to IFWTWA’s online Magazine, Global Writes.


• You will have online access to Press Pass, IFWTWA’s Members’ Only online newsletter. • You can apply for regional luncheon activities. Listen to Susan Montgomery on Big Blend Radio!

• You can join IFWTWA’s groups for members on LinkedIn, Facebook, Tripatini and Twitter. We are very excited about the Emerging Writers Program since we feel the world is wide open for new writers in these topic areas. With our world’s immersion in social media and the extensive availability of online outlets, the opportunities for publication are countless. The market is also growing as more people focus their leisure time on travel, food, and good drinks. In today’s world, when one article is published online it can be shared to huge audiences through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and other social media outlets. There has never been a time in history when one writer has the potential for reaching so many people.

Yet we also need to focus on maintaining high standards for the accuracy and quality of our publishing efforts. And by learning directly from an experienced professional, Emerging Writers can make sure their articles meet high standards. Cost for participating in the EW program is $150. You can apply by going to for an application. Susan Montgomery is a board member of IFWTWA. She writes about food, drink, travel, and the arts on, as well as San Diego Food, Restaurant Examiner, Food & Wine Examiner,


Ventura County West Beyond Expectations in Coastal California By Linda Kissam ‘Food, Wine & Shopping Diva’

We all love California – especially Southern California. The sun, the sea, the wine, the ahhhh of it all. You may be someone who thinks they’ve been there, done that. Have you experienced Ventura County West? This coastal town between LA and San Francisco is trending big, offering unique activities, great wines and some tasty restaurants. If you’re looking for an ‘indulge yourself’ kind of vacation, this would be it. Tourism dollars make a big difference in The tourism folks for a specific section of Ventura communities – especially small towns. Just like the got smart and figured out that marketing three commercial products Pepsi or Godiva Chocolate, different cities – Camarillo, Oxnard and Venturaeach travel destination needs an identity that stretching 22 miles under the moniker “Ventura evokes emotion, imagery and reactions that inspire County West” as its own destination would make travelers to visit. You know what I am talking about. sense. The dynamic trio offers everything from Think “I [Heart] New York®,” “Virginia is for vintage shopping, beach time, wine time, whale Lovers®,” and “What happens in Vegas, stays in watching, to exploring the Channel Islands National Vegas®. Each of these cities have developed a Park and championship golf (as well as foot golf). unique, exciting and valuable brand that draw Add in the Camarillo Premium Outlets, a great millions of visitors to their respective regions. For year-round climate, a burgeoning culinary scene Ventura West, it’s, “Inspiring Choices.” plus a very busy regional airport … and spending a Consider this. Brands are business assets requiring night or two in the Ventura County West area skillful marketing and extensive promotion to stay seems to be the smart traveler’s choice. recognized and relevant. Leading companies invest I spent a couple of days there. All you need to do is billions of dollars each year on advertising exit California Highway 101 in Ventura County campaigns, marketing materials, social media outreach and other creative brand-building tools in West to enjoy places you’ve never seen, beaches you’ve never walked, wines you’ve never sipped, an effort to appeal to customers, increase market farm-to-table food you’ve never tasted and trails share and grow revenue. Small towns have to you’ve never walked. compete using this mindset. PAGE 44

Here are some of my favorite things about this area. Lodging: All memorable vacations begin and end with great accommodations. My advice is to stay somewhere that has many of the comforts of home, is centrally located, and has something to do on property. With that in mind, I recommend the extended-stay hotel Residence Inn Oxnard River Ridge. You’ll enjoy spacious guest rooms with a nice kitchen area and state-of-the-art 32-inch LG TVs. Just steps away you can hit the links at the adjacent PGA-rated River Ridge Golf Course, or play a match on one of their five lighted tennis courts. They are also offering “Foot Golf.” Played on the golf course this is fun for ANY age group. Restaurant on property. Art & Wine: The Painted Cabernet at The Collection Riverpark is perfect for both the artistic and the not so artistic (definitely my category). The instructor guides you step by step to recreate the daily featured painting while you sip a glass or two of wine, soda or juice. Good for all ages and genders. Great bonding activity. I actually enjoyed the heck out of this activity. Like drinking wine, your art is good if you like it. Nature Walk: Something exciting is happening –especially for nature lovers. You can now hike the hill behind city hall and be part of a new development. An easy three mile walk (assuming you have the proper shoes, hat and attitude), have fun walking a winding path up a canyon that is part of the Ventura Botanical Gardens (dogs on leashes welcome). The long-range plan is to turn this somewhat bushy and scruffy open land into a botanical garden, with a visitors and nature education center at the top, all with a view of the ocean and the Channel Islands eight miles offshore. Experiencing it now is like watching a rock star being born. Wine Time: Yup, there are wineries in Ventura County West offering an interesting selection of varietals, blends and dessert wines. Most are boutique wineries producing between 1,500 and 2,000 cases annually, but some go as high as 200,000. Many tasting rooms include on-site production facilities and vineyard sources range from off-site vineyards in Ventura County to top wine-growing California regions. A special shout out goes to Herzog Wine Cellars. In 1985, the Herzog family decided to expand their winemaking operations to California from New York. They make wine under two separate labels: Baron Herzog and Herzog Wine Cellars. After twenty years of renting space in various wineries, the family finally built its own state-of-the-art winery in Oxnard in an industrial complex. Under the supervision of head winemaker Joe Hurliman, Herzog Wine Cellars has created a center for high-end contemporary winemaking in a tradition that dates back nearly six centuries. Beautiful tasting room, amazing upscale restaurant. Do both or miss something very special. Continued on Next Page… PAGE 45

Footgolf: Footgolf is a newer sport where players kick a soccer ball into a cup in as few shots as possible, using an existing golf course. This has a quick learning curve and is appropriate for all age levels. The best part is you get to ride around in a golf cart. Rules are golf-like, but you can modify to fit your group. It felt more like kickball to me than Listen to Linda golf… and yes I missed a ball or two and landed on Kissam’s Interview my bum, but I loved every minute out there. Best on Big Blend Radio! played with six or less people and a big ‘ol beer, cocktail or bottled water in hand. Take your time – be one with the surroundings and fun of it all. You can play it right next to your lodging at River Ridge Vintage Aircraft: Golf Course. VERY affordable. Play 9-18 holes. The Southern About a two hour time investment. California Wing, one of the largest Great Dinner Choice: Treat units in the CAF in yourself to an unforgettable membership, seafood dinner at Brophy aircraft and Brothers at Ventura Harbor capabilities, was formed in 1981 and can be found Village. This is a valuenext door to the Wayside Café (see above). There driven menu meaning it’s are about 11 aircraft on display at any one time, affordable and delicious. most of them still participate in air shows The menu is large, but throughout the Western states. focused. The harbor views are breathtaking. Expect crowds. Nice bar featuring one of the best Aircraft are based in two large hangars and there Bloody Mary’s in Southern California. If you like are tons of other artifacts and displays to engage clams, you’re going to be in clam nirvana. Casual with. The wing’s Aviation Museum is unique with atmosphere on some high end real estate. hundreds of artifacts of aviation history. Do yourself Professionally trained servers and fanatic owners a favor, call ahead and ask for a docent-led tour. guarantee this is money well spent. The docents are well trained, articulate, and passionate. This place is ever expanding, so you’ll Night Time Fun: Located in the beautiful Ventura never be bored, always moved. Small donation Harbor complex, the Ventura Comedy Club requested. features some of the best comedy shows touring the country. If you haven’t been to a comedy club in So there we have it – the new and yet ever evolving Ventura County West. A booming area that attracts a while, you’re missing a fun night out. Every seat surfers, bohemians, tourists and anyone else who is good. Prices are affordable, even with a two seeks an easy breezy vacation with access to pure drink minimum. Appropriate for adults, lots of parking, and the guys who run this club are serious wholesome fresh air, unspoiled ocean beaches, hiking trails, a near year-round perfect climate, and about quality comedy. a decidedly free spirit atmosphere. Charming communities can be found along California's Breakfast Done Right: I judge a city by its coastline, but few reflect California's distinctively breakfast offerings. If you can’t come up with a diverse, relaxed and friendly personality like good breakfast joint – you’re not on my radar. Speaking of radar, a group that really knows how to Ventura County West. eat well are the pilots and locals who have found their way to Waypoint Café at the Camarillo Airport. Linda Kissam 'Food, Wine & Shopping Diva' is a professional travel, food, and wine writer based Built for casual weekend travelers (pilots), it’s also out of Southern California. Through her a great place for the rest of us. Sit inside or out on persona as The Wine Chix of the patio, the Waypoint gives diners a front-row she specializes in easy, seat to view planes and helicopters coming and breezy destination stories sharing her favorite going, but it’s the food that is going to WOW you. things about the places she visits. Linda is also Great service, affordable prices, funky digs, and the President of the International Food, Wine generally a waiting line for breakfast or lunch. Be and Travel Writers Association. See more at patient, it’s worth it. Bonus: The premium outlets her website are two minutes away. Just sayin’. PAGE 46


Guanajuato, Mexico

Leave the beaches of Quintana Roo, skip the rain forests of Chiapas, and vacate the hectic streets of D.F. (Mexico City) to become captivated by the cultural city of Guanajuato, Mexico, nestled comfortably in the Sierra of Guanajuato Mountains. Each October the city welcomes Festival International Cervantino, where people from all over the world come to perform ballets and plays. Tunnels throughout the former mining city make it easily accessible to visit, but the most welcoming aspect of the area are the people who embrace the traveler. Relish this hidden gem of a city amidst the culture, the cuisine, the tunnels, the mountains, and most of all the locals. Henry Biernacki ‘The Global Henry’ is an airline captain, line check airman, world traveler to over 130 countries, and the author of the novel ‘No More Heroes’. Visit



Listen to Big Blend Radio’s Interview with Henry Biernacki ‘The Global Henry’

Springtime in San Diego’s Backcountry

Forests, Farms, Birds, Blossoms and Wine By Lisa D. Smith Spring in San Diego’s mountain and backcountry region is spectacular. Unless you experience one of those unusual March or April snowfalls, the days are cheerful with wildflowers and sunshine, and the evenings are crisp and romantic under a velvet star-studded sky. Because it is on the Pacific Flyway, San Diego County has a large number of visiting bird species, and spring is one of the best times to view them in the mountain and countryside. Just under an hour from downtown San Diego and less than a three hour drive from all Southern California cities and the Arizona state border, here are three weekend escapes that will reconnect you with nature, replenish your spirit, and put a spring back in your step.

Flowers, Wine and Mountain Magic in Julian Boasting four gentle seasons, Julian is a charming, historic gold mining town up in San Diego’s mountains. Spring is a colorful experience with rolling hillsides speckled with wildflowers, and roadsides lined with blossoming apple orchards, poppies, lupine, daffodils and fragrant lilacs. Whether you’re looking for a girl’s weekend away, a family getaway or romantic retreat, Julian has the lodgings to suit your budget and needs, the activities to keep you entertained and engaged, and the tranquility to help you relax and rejuvenate. Julian is an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise. Lake Cuyamaca and Rancho Cuyamaca State Park make for a splendid day of hiking, boating, fishing and picnicking. Explore the backcountry trails in Volcan Mountain Wilderness Preserve, Santa Ysabel Open Space Preserve, and William Heise County Park, and you are sure to see a variety birds and wildflowers, forests of oak and pine, and wide open views that stretch to the coast and desert. It’s not uncommon to see wild turkeys and deer. A day trip down to the vast Anza-Borrego Desert State Park offers even more wildflower and bird sightings, hiking trails, and phenomenal desert scenery. A unique Julian experience is a visit to the California Wolf Center. Tours are by reservation only, and include an educational presentation and guided observation of resident wolves.


Julian’s charming historic downtown features an assortment of eclectic and boutique shops, art galleries, and restaurants. You can take a historic walking tour, visit the Julian Pioneer Museum and wander through the Pioneer Cemetery which provides some of the best views of the downtown district. If you want to learn about the area’s gold rush history, Eagle Mining Company, offers guided tours of the Eagle and High Peak Mines that were established in the 1870s. Fun for families, the Julian Doves & Desperados perform historic comedy skits on Sundays (weather permitting) in the downtown.

When it comes to lodging choices, the area has a number of Bed & Breakfast Inns, hotels, as well as vacation cabins and cottages. Nestled into the hillside on the edge of the downtown district, Orchard Hill provides luxurious accommodations in a beautiful garden setting. Located in the heart of the downtown district, Julian Lodge features charming rooms and offers a deluxe continental breakfast. And if you travel with your canine family, Pinehaven Cabin is a lovely mountain home for couples and their dogs.

To plan your Julian Escape, contact the Julian Chamber of Commerce at (760) 765-1857, or visit When the gold panned out, Julian them in the historic Julian Town Hall. Their website turned to agriculture. Apple, has up-to-date event peach and pear orchards were information, and lists local attractions and activities, planted and Julian became known shops, lodging choices, restaurants and more. for its apple production and delicious apple pies. In the fall, SPRING EVENTS IN JULIAN visitors clamor to the mountain For up-to-date event information call (760) 765hamlet to go apple picking and to 1857 or visit get a taste of Julian’s famous pie, March 21-22: Daffodil Show which in that season is made from locally grown April 8-12: Julian Family Fiddle Camp apples. Apple pies are served year-round at April 11: A Taste of Julian bakeries such as Apple Alley, Mom’s Pies and April 12: Julian “Flash” Jam Julian Pie Company. Home to producing wineries like Menghini Winery, and wine tasting rooms such May 7-10: Julian Women's Club Wild Flower Show May 7-11: Julian Arts Guild Spring Fine Arts Show as Witch Creek Winery and Orfila Winery, Julian has now become a wine tasting destination. Jeremy’s on the Hill California Style Bistro is a popular restaurant known for serving delectable Click to see seasonal cuisine made from local ingredients, and Big Blend’s for pouring locally produced wines, hard cider and Historic craft brews. The restaurant often hosts wine Julian, Ca TV! dinners and special culinary events, and also has live entertainment on weekends. PAGE 49

Forest Delights at Bailey’s Palomar Resort on Peaceful Palomar Mountain A mile high up on beautiful Palomar Mountain in north San Diego, Bailey’s Palomar Resort is a historic 60 acre property that was once the original township. Continuously operated by the Bailey family since 1888, the resort maintains its historic charm and features old growth forests, lush green meadows, wildflowers, heritage apple orchards, walnut trees, and a fish pond. The resort is a place of pure tranquility. Here one can relax, recharge and simply enjoy the clean, fresh mountain air, chirping birds and friendly critters.

Birds and Blooms at Blue Heron Farm Bed & Breakfast in Fallbrook Nestled in the hills of Fallbrook between the Temecula wine country and Oceanside coastline, Blue Heron Farm Bed & Breakfast is located on an organic farm that produces a variety of crops including sugar snap peas, lettuce, strawberries, and heirloom tomatoes. Surrounded by flower-filled gardens that lead into the farmlands, this beautiful hacienda-style B&B features three guest suites, outdoor patios and seating areas, and a lovely Jacaranda-tree shaded lawn. Innkeeper Andrea Stay in one of their Peterson is known for her sumptuous breakfasts mountain cottages, that are laden with the fresh fruit and vegetables the restored turn-offrom the farm, and served out on the deck the-century Bailey House once known as overlooking the farm and gardens. Bailey’s Palomar Hotel, or enjoy a little A family-friendly destination, Blue Heron Farm Bed & Breakfast is a casual and relaxing escape from glamping retreat the city, and spring is a wonderful time to visit. The under the trees. gardens are brimming with blossoms, and lively Perfect for families or couples, the mountain with the chirping of local and visiting birds that cottages are equipped with fresh linens and include hummingbirds, orioles, hawks, thrashers, bedding, have a full kitchen, fireplace, and an and roadrunners. Birding locations abound, both outdoor dining area. Ideal for groups or family close to the farm and within easy driving distance. gatherings, the Bailey House has seven 1920s style guest rooms, covered porches, and a modern Another reason the farm is a birders paradise, is that it adjoins Camp Pendleton, the last large kitchen. And, if you want to sleep under the stars and wake up to the birds but don’t want the hassle expanse of chaparral and coastal habitat in of setting up a campsite, Bailey’s glamping season Southern California. begins in mid-May and features luxury campsites Besides bird watching, you can spend the day outfitted with comfortable tented sleeping areas, a reading a good book on a deck overlooking the kitchen and dining area, and bathroom facilities. gardens, or take a farm walk. Visit quaint downtown There resort features hiking trails and picnic areas, Fallbrook and see the murals, browse the art galleries and boutique shops, and grab a bite at and you can also visit the adjacent Palomar State one of the local restaurants. The area also has Park, and nearby Palomar Observatory, a fascinating facility that showcases the famous 200- wine tasting opportunities. Just a short drive away, Oceanside features sunny beaches, the pier and inch Hale Telescope, known for decades as the harbor village. largest effective telescope in operation. To learn more about Bailey’s Palomar Resort visit Learn more at PAGE 50


By Nancy J. Reid People born in March are said to be very loving compassionate and will help others, as long as they feel they are respected and their help is appreciated. They are usually honest and reliable, romantic and sensitive, and somewhat selfless. They are attracted to beauty, they are creative, and they can be dreamers. Because of this, they tend to let others dominate them and they adapt to different situations more readily than others. Those born under the Pisces sign, March 1 to March 20th like action and winning. They are up for challenges, are very flexible, and like getting involved in good causes. They can be impatient if they have to wait around with nothing to do, and admitting failure is not a strong point. They do not take commands well, but they like a good fight. Those born under the Aries sign, March 21st to April 20th are full of energy and love adventure. They are quick witted and like being the first to do something new. They exude confidence and enthusiasm but can be rather impulsive and impatient. Sometimes they are selfish and quick tempered and their love of adventure can make them foolhardy and risk takers. Two of the most interesting people born in March are Wyatt Earp and Chief Joseph. Wyatt Earp was born on March 19, 1848, and Chief Joseph was born on March 3, 1840, so they are both Pisces. Contrary to the Hollywood version of Wyatt Earp Americans love, he was an outlaw one minute and a lawman the next. Chief Joseph, on the other hand, seems to have been a real hero to his people. He protected them as best he could, and valiantly fought to keep his people’s land. Whether Chief Joseph and Wyatt Earp ever met is hard to tell, but Hollywood says they did. In a 1958 television episode of The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp, (Hugh O'Brian played Marshall Earp) Earp, under orders from General Sherman, tracks down Chief Joseph (played by Richard Garland) to retrieve a Gatling Gun captured by the Nez Perce during the Indian Wars. When Earp catches up to Chief Joseph the Chief is sorry for the conflict between the militia and his people, and Earp tells him that justice for the Indians would only occur 50 years down the road. Earp also espouses his Christian belief that all would be equal in the hereafter. This western series was part of the DesiLu Productions, a television production company co-owned by Lucille Ball and bandleader Desi Arnaz. Desi Arnaz was born March 2, 1917 and is also a Pisces. PAGE 52

Another great bandleader and also an astute business man and television producer, Lawrence Welk, was born March 11, 1903, just adding to the numerous musical Pisces. While Welk hosted his own show, The Lawrence Welk Show, Arnaz played himself in I Love Lucy. Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball co-founded DeSilu Productions and are credited with inventing the rerun concept.

March is a musical month with well-known composers and singers in both the Pisces and Aries categories. Pisces composers include Frederick Chopin, Giochino Rossini, Bedrich Smetana, Antonio Lucio Vivaldi, Maurice Ravel, and Rimsky-Korsakov. Aries composers include Modest Mussorgsky, Bela Bartok, Johann Sebastian Bach, Joseph Haydn as well as conductor A. Toscanini. Pisces singers include Justin Beiber, Jon Bon Jovi, Liza Minneli, James Taylor, Herbie Mann and Nat King Cole. Aries singers include Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross, Elton John, Mariah Carey, Reba McEntire, Eric Clapton and Herb Alpert. Haydyn was instrumental in developing chamber music as a style and he is known as the Father of the Symphony. He was also Beethoven’s teacher. Aretha Franklin was the first female performer to be inducted into the Rock and Roll hall of Fame. Herb Alpert and Jon Bon Jovi are major philanthropists. Alpert having his own foundation that supports youth in the arts, addresses environmental issues, and he financed the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Bon Jovi has been named the first Founding Ambassador for the Habitat for Humanity Ambassador program and is he heavily involved in the fight against AIDS. Two very interesting men born in March, both Pisces, are Albert Einstein (right) and Joseph Pulitzer (left). Einstein is famous as a physicist that developed the most famous equation in the world, E = mc2, the theory of relativity, plus for his part in WWII and his letter to President Roosevelt. Pulitzer was a journalist who crusaded against big business and corruption, and helped keep the Statue of Liberty in New York. He is best known for the Pulitzer Prizes established in 1917 by money he bequeathed to Columbia University to recognize artistic and journalistic achievements.

To see the rest of our famous people born in March, including Artists, Entertainer & Performers, Entrepreneurs and more, please click here. PAGE 53

Spring in Yuma in Southwest Arizona

Alive with The Arts, History, Golf, Farm and Culinary Festivities Celebrating over one hundred years as the Listen to Tanisha Yee, “Gateway to the Great Southwest”, Yuma is just a Yuma Civic Center few hours from San Diego, Tucson, and Phoenix. Events, on Big Blend The city is home to the Yuma Crossing National Radio! Heritage Area, Yuma Territorial State Historic Park, as well as the beautiful Colorado River. Host to a weekly farmers market, special events and festivals, Yuma’s historic downtown district bustles with boutiques and gift shops, the Yuma Art Center ART & MUSIC and Historic Yuma Theatre, art galleries, restaurants and saloons, along with wine and beer See our special feature on the spring shows at tasting destinations. the Historic Yuma Theatre on Page 10! Other event venues include the Yuma Civic Center, Quartermaster Depot State Historic Park, and West Mar. 6-8: 9th Annual Studio Tour: Mountain Shadows Artists Association member’s studios. Wetland Park and Gateway Park on the banks of Various locations. Tel: 928-345-9503. the Colorado River. From shows, expos, and art and entertainment, to family-friendly festivals that Mar. 13: CASA’s Tribute to Elvis: Scot Bruce is celebrate Yuma's rich southwestern history and internationally known as the greatest Elvis since cultural traditions, there's always something Elvis. His amazing resemblance to Elvis Presley happening in Yuma, the world’s sunniest and his ability to sing and play like “The King of destination! Make your travel plans now around one of this southwest city’s favorite annual events! Rock and Roll” has entertained audiences around the globe. CASA provides toys, clothing and personal care items for neglected children. Please note, events are subject to change. For Recreational activities and training are also travel information and up-to-date event details provided by CASA. Fundraising is vital so Mr. including times, locations, and cost – please Bruce faithfully makes Yuma a priority in his yearly visit . schedule. Yuma Civic Center, Tel: 928-373-5040.



ART & MUSIC Continued Mar. 21: Yuma Benefit Jazz Concert: The Yuma Jazz Society presents the 2015 Yuma Benefit Jazz Concert, with performances by local and acclaimed artists. Proceeds benefit the Stewart Vincent Wolfe Creative Playground Rebuild. 6pm, West Wetlands Park. Tel: (928) 373-5243


Mar. 28: 4th Annual Music on Main: Free entertainment and lots of vendors, fun, and food in historic downtown Yuma. Info: 928-373-5028

Bruce Brown talks Yuma Golf Events on Big Blend Radio!

GOLF & ATHLETICS Feb. 28-Mar. 1: Yuma Men’s Senior City Golf Championship: 2-Day Stroke Play Event. Desert Hills Golf Course. Tel: (928) 373-5220.

Big Blend’s

Watch Yuma, Arizona TV!

Mar. 7: March On City Finals (5K/10K Run and Fun Walk): This is the final event in the Yuma Parks and Recreation 5K and 10K Run and Fun Walk Winter Series. Tel: (928) 373-5243


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Mar. 7: Desert Hills Men’s Club Association Tournament: 8:00am at Desert Hills Golf Course. 2 Man Add ‘em Up. Tel: (928) 373-5220. Mar. 7: Family Fitness Fest: Join Parks and Recreation and the Yuma Regional Medical Center as we exercise our way to a happier, healthier lifestyle. 9am-12pm, West Wetlands Park. Tel: (928) 373-5243

Mar. 15: Family Golf “Play the Par-3 Course”: In this clinic you will actually play golf on the course. All Ages: 3 and up. Desert Hills Golf Course. Tel: (928) 373-5220. March 27 & 28: Desert Hills Men’s Club Association Tournament: 8:00am. Men’s Club Championships. Tel: (928) 373-5220



Quartermaster Depot-Sunrise Farmers Market: Sundays, 9am - 2pm. Tel: (928) 782-0062 Historic Downtown Yuma Farmers Market: Tuesdays, 10am - 3pm through April 1. Tel: (425) 941-5030

Mar. 3 & 11: Savor Yuma Culinary Tours: Progressive dinner with friends. Info and tickets call 800-293-0071 or 928-783-0071. Mar. 4 & 5: Field to Feast Tours: Hands-on ag tour departs from Quartermaster Depot. Info and tickets call 800-293-0071 or 928-783-0071.

Yuma Palms Regional Center Farmers Market: Saturdays, 10am - 3pm through the last Saturday in Mar. 13: Date Night: Gourmet dinner served in a March. Tel: (425) 941-5030 date grove with a menu featuring Medjool dates. Info and tickets call 800-293-0071 or Feb. 28-Mar. 1: Yuma Lettuce Days Festival goes 928-783-0071. “down on the farm” on the UA research farm with live cooking demonstrations and contests, product Apr. 10: People's Choice Salsa Queen samples, farm and equipment displays, fun for kids, Competition & Kick-Off Party: Think you have music, entertainment and lots of food and drink. Yuma's best salsa recipe? Enter the Salsa Queen Celebrity Chef is Chef Hosea Rosenberg, season 5 Contest on Friday, April 10 and compete for the title winner of Top Chef. For more info, go to of Yuma's Salsa Queen! Kick-off party for the Tunes & Tacos Festival. 6pm, Yuma Civic Center, Tel: 928-373-5040. Mar. 3: Farmer to Farmer “technical” Ag Tour for Apr. 11: 5th Annual Tunes & Tacos Festival: The those with a background in farming departs from Taco Festival brings people from all over the the Quartermaster Depot. Info and tickets call southwest together as they enjoy activities, 800-293-0071 or 928-783-0071. contests, live entertainment, food and refreshments. Festival goers are invited to feast on tacos as Yuma’s finest taco vendors compete for the title of ‘Yuma’s Taco King’. Sample and vote on your favorite salsa from local competitors vying for the chance to be ‘Yuma’s Salsa Queen’ winner. The Vendor Village will be filled with business and craft vendors for those who like to shop. Adults can visit the Cerveza Garden and Tequila Tent to enjoy Beer, Margaritas and Tequila. Entertainment for the kids will include piñatas, face-painting, jumpers, pony rides, games and more! Community performers will entertain and main stage music acts will close out an amazing night of Tunes & Tacos. Yuma Civic Center and Desert Sun Stadium, Tel: 928-373-5040. PAGE 57

Downtown Tours: Tours of downtown and the riverfront with Steve Cook, sponsored by Yuma County Historical Society. Every Tuesday and Thursday plus, the first Saturday of the month. Cost is $10, call 928-231-6433.


Mar. 7: Arizona Archaeology Expo: Free, educational event for adults and children alike that features Native American craft demonstrations, field trips, and information booths on Arizona's prehistoric and historic heritage. Yuma Quartermaster Depot. Tel: 800-293-0071 or 928-783-0071.

CARS, PLANES & MILITARY EVENTS Feb. 27 & 28: 53rd Annual Marine Corp Air Station Yuma Airshow & Open House. With the theme of "Yuma Air Circus," this year’s air show will include rehearsals, a children’s expo and a twilight preview on Friday as well as daylong performances and displays Saturday. MCAS. Info: Greg McShane 928-269-3327 Mar. 6-8: 23rd Annual Midnight at the Oasis: This classic car show features more than 1,000 classic cars, plus vendors, food, rides for the kids, Friday and Saturday evening concerts and a “cruise-in” to kick things off. Desert Sun Stadium. Tel: 928-343-1715 Mar. 18: Behind the Big Guns Tour: This inside look at Yuma Proving Ground departs from Yuma Quartermaster Depot. Advance reservations required, for info and tickets call 800-293-0071 or 928-783-0071.

Casa de Coronado Museum Click to see

Free Tours by Appointment Tel: (928) 783-4453

Travel & Hospitality Memorabilia On site at the Historic Coronado Motor Hotel, Yuma, AZ PAGE 58

Yuma Landing Bar & Grill Come Eat, Drink & Be Merry where the First Airplane Landed in Arizona! Hangar Sports Bar 24 Beers on Tap ~ Daily Drink Specials Appetizers & Entrees Televised Sports Events ~ Live Music & Entertainment

Captain’s Lounge Top-shelf Cocktails ~ Fine Wines ~ Specialty Coffees

Yuma Landing Restaurant American & South-of-the-Border Cuisine Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Click to see Video!

Win! Win! Win! Sign up on for our Captain’s Log e-Newsletter and you will be entered into our monthly drawing for a $25 Yuma Landing Gift Certificate, plus you'll get news on other great giveaways, specials, Yuma Landing recipes, events news & more! Located on the same property as the Historic Coronado Motor Hotel, the Yuma Landing Bar & Grill is the site where the first airplane landed in Arizona, and features a state monument, historic photos and memorabilia.

Groups of 15 or more diners get a 15% discount on breakfast, lunch and dinner. All Military Personnel Receive a 20% Discount on Meals!

195 S. 4th Avenue, Yuma, Arizona Tel: (928) 782-7427 PAGE 59

Spring in California’s Yosemite Gold Country Art, Theatre, Celtic Celebrations, Living History & More! Host to numerous festivals, special events, art shows, concerts and performances, Tuolumne County is located in the heart of California’s Yosemite Gold Country, and is comprised of the historic gold rush and mountain towns of Sonora, Groveland, Twain Harte, Long Barn, Columbia, and Jamestown. For up-to-date event information contact the Tuolumne County Visitors Bureau at 800-446-1333 or 209-533-4420, or visit

THE ARTS March 1- May 3: Sierra Repertory Theatre Presents “Mary Poppins”: Mary Poppins follows the troubled Banks family after the delightful nanny arrives on their doorstep. Using a "practically perfect" combination of magic and common sense, she takes the children on memorable experiences, but even the grown-ups learn a lesson or two from the nanny who advises that "anything can happen if you let it.” Shows run through May 3 at the Sierra Repertory Theatre in Sonora, on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 2pm and Fridays and Saturdays at 7pm. Info: 209-532-3120. March 14: 2nd Saturday Art Night: Enjoy art, music and refreshments from 5pm-9pm in historic downtown Sonora. Free to all.




March 6-8: 29th Annual Sonora Celtic Faire: The largest Celtic Faire returns to Sonora’s Mother Lode Fairgrounds, celebrating all Celtic Nations. Five stages of Celtic Music features BarleyJuice, The Black Brothers, BlackEyed Dempseys, Banshee in the Kitchen, Black Irish Band, Cooking with Turf, Golden Bough, and more. There will be jousting on horseback, a large armor foot combat tournament, and a Celtic living history area with performers acting out 2000 years of Celtic History! Browse through Celtic vendors, artisan and craftsmen booths. Enjoy Scottish Highland Competition Games, Bagpipe Bands, Celtic Clans, Irish step Dancers, Scottish highland dancers, jugglers, magicians, fire-eaters, a fire breathing dragon, traditional foods, whiskies, and ale! Tel: 209-532-8375 or visit March 17: St. Patrick’s Annual Shooter Scooter Race - Dress in costume and come and cheer on your team as they race around downtown Twain Harte on their scooters from bar to bar for some libation and playing cards for the poker run. For information call Tel (209) 586-4482

March 27: Columbia’s Birthday Celebration Celebrate the discovery of gold by the Hildreth party (March 27, 1850). Gather in the middle of town for a speech, cake, punch, and reenactments costumed docents throughout town. Call Columbia State Historic Park for more details. (209) 588-9128 April 4-5: Railtown 1897 Opening Weekend: Grand Opening festivities, both days. This weekend only, Calaveras, Mariposa and Tuolumne County residents ride trains for free (proof of residency required). Arrive at 7am and watch the crew prepare the train for the day in the historic roundhouse. Tel: 209-984-3953 April 5: Victorian Easter Parade & Egg Hunts in Columbia SHP: Parade begins at 12:30 pm, registration at 11 am. Prizes are awarded for fanciest Victorian hat, and best dressed couple, lasses and lads, and groups. Costumed docents from the gold rush era add color to this lively event. Egg hunts for children by age groups, noon to 2 pm. Find the golden egg and receive a special prize! Be on the lookout for Thaddeus E. Hare (aka the Easter Bunny!). Tel: 209-536-1672.

April 10-12: Sierra Smokepolers Spring Rendezvous: Sonora Smokepolers present black powder shooting; cannons, children's fun; primitive camps; trader's row; Dutch oven cooking; council fire. Camp Six Bits, Chinese Camp, CA. Tel: 209-785-2128 PAGE 61

Spring in California’s Sequoia Country

Art, Music & Theatre, Bathtub Races, Flower Festivals & More!


Tulare County in central California is home to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, Giant Sequoia National Monument and Sequoia National Forest, agricultural communities, art and historic downtown destinations including Visalia, Exeter, Porterville, Three Rivers, Dinuba, Lindsay, Springville, and Tulare. Spring is vibrant in California’s Sequoia Country with wildflowers in the foothills, parks and forests, specialty shopping in the historic downtowns, wine tasting, art and theatre productions, musical performances and garden events and festivals. To plan your Spring Sequoia Adventure, visit

FLOWER POWER April 25: 17th Annual Iris Festival: A multitude of activities are offered for the entire family from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in downtown Porterville. Attendees will enjoy features such as: over 200 crafter, food, vendor, business and information booths; free entertainment on two stages; antiques and collectibles faire; special merchant promotions, a Kids Zone, Chili Cook-off and Festival of Colors Run. Presented by the Porterville Chamber of Commerce, (559) 784-7502,

Listen to Big Blend Radio’s interview with Sandy Blankenship and Stephanie Cortez, about Spring events in Exeter and Porterville, CA!

May 3: 14th Annual Garden Party: Held at downtown Exeter’s Mixter Park, (corner of Pine & E Streets) at 5:00 pm features dinner, entertainment, a live and silent auction, a fun time for all. Presented by A Festival of Arts, the Garden Party is the main source of income that supports the murals of Exeter. For more information call 559-592-2919. May 9: 12th Annual Full Bloom Garden Walk: Presented by Exeter Chamber of Commerce, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Visitors are invited to explore four beautiful and unique private gardens in and around the Exeter area. Be sure and take time to enjoy some refreshments hosted by Exeter’s 2012 Business of the Year, By the Water Tower Antiques, relax in the ambiance of their lovely Victorian garden, 141 South B Street. Tickets in advance, will be available at the Exeter Chamber of Commerce and at By the Water Tower Antiques. Tickets will be available the day of the event, only at By the Water Tower Antiques. For more information call 559-592-2919 or


MUSIC & THE ARTS March 6 & April 3: First Friday Porterville Art Walk: Free, self-guided, public art walk in downtown Porterville. Visit galleries, studios, businesses, restaurants and other venues from 5pm-8pm. Tel: (559) 776-7675

March 16: Irish Hooley: Slugger O'Toole: Musicians and step dancers with foot-stomping pub songs, heart-rendering ballads and traditional instruments. Visalia Fox Theatre, 308 W. Main, Visalia. Tel: 559 625-1369

March 7: The Tulare County Symphony: Traditional Beethoven Symphony No. 3 along with a modern YouTube Symphony "Eroica" at the Visalia Fox Theatre, 308 W. Main, Visalia. Tel: 559 732-8600.

March 20-22: South Valley Artists Studio Tour: Wind your way through Tulare County’s countryside to visit various art studios. Tel: 559-802-3266. March 27-29, April 3-4, 10-12: Greater Tuna: Hilarious comedy about Texas' third smallest town, where the Lion's Club is too liberal and Patsy Cline never dies. The Barn Theater. Tel: (559) 310-7046.

March 7 & April 4: 1st Saturday Art in Three Rivers - A day-long festival of food, fun, fabulous art, with specials promoted throughout the town. April 3, 10, 17 & 24: Music on Main Street: 6You can watch artists painting plein air, eat good 8pm, Centennial Park in downtown Porterville. food and listen to local musicians or story-tellers. From 11am to 5pm. Visit Tel: (559) 784-7502 March 14: Pianist: David Wheatley: Wheatley is a fabulously successful pianist, arranger and composer in the Hollywood film scene. Presented by Three Rivers Performing Arts Institute at the Community Presbyterian Church in Three Rivers. Info:

April 10-12: 42nd Annual Jazzaffair: 3 day traditional jazz festival that celebrates “Jazz for all Generations!” The pre-festival kick-off is on April 9th. Info: Rusty Crain at (559) 561-4549


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March 28: Bathtub Race for Charity at Lake Kaweah: Part of Hero Appreciation Months in Three Rivers, this Free Family-Friendly annual event is held at Lake Kaweah's "Kaweah Recreation Area". Pack a picnic lunch, gaze at March 22: HOPE Relay for Life 2015 Golf Tournament: Held at Exeter Golf Course. Check in spring wildflowers, and watch teams turn cast-iron at noon, $50 per play includes Green Fees and Tri- bathtubs into floatable steerable boats and race across Lake Kaweah for charity. Better still, form a Tip Dinner. Prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places, hole sponsorship is $100. For more information on team and join the race! $200 per team. Free for how you can participate, call Ted at 559-786-1188, spectators. Free rides and free water safety lessons for children on Frank Root's big blue raft. sign up deadline is March 16th. Tel: 559-561-4270. March 15: 1st Annual Rocky Hill Triathlon: Held in Exeter, CA. For information on registration visit


UPCOMING BIG BLEND RADIO SHOWS Join co-hosts Nancy J. Reid & Lisa D. Smith, the crazy mother-daughter travel team and publishers of Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine and Spirit of America Magazine, for Big Blend Radio’s Champagne Sundays variety show on March 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29; and, special Arizona shows including Yuma on March 2, and Globe on March 9. All shows stream live online at 11am PT / 12pm MT / 1pm CT / 2pm ET. Listen live or to the archive show on, or download the podcasts from iTunes. Mar. 1: Film, Art, History, Foreign Policy, Travel & Events On this Episode: - Actors Stan Houston & Clay Chappell who both appeared onscreen with Oprah (photo above), in the movie Selma - Glynn Burrows of Norfolk Tours UK will discuss Historic Women of England - Artist Victoria Chick profiles Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer - William Northrop – Author ‘Spook War: A Memoir from the Trenches’ Show Airs Live on March 1, 2015 at 11am PT / 2pm ET – Click Here to Listen Live / Archive. March 2: Spring in Yuma, Arizona On this Episode: - Rex Ijams – Historic Yuma Theatre and Yuma Art Center - Bruce Brown – Desert Hills Golf Course - Tanisha Yee - Yuma Civic Center - Yvonne Peach – Coronado Motor Hotel, Yuma Landing Bar & Grill and Casa de Coronado Museum - Debbie Mansheim of Basket Creations & More and Bard Date Company talks Medjool Date Nutrition - Donna George of The Peanut Patch shares Fun Facts about Peanuts Click Here to Listen Live / Archive!


Mar. 8: Music, Restaurants & Recipes, Drug Dealing & Hollywood History On This Episode: - Texas based singer-songwriter Shelley King will talk about her new album and video ‘Building A Fire’ - Acclaimed baritone/soprano husband-wife duo Beth Donnelly & Doug Feller discuss their latest CD ‘My Heart is For You’ - Howard & Ruth Milstein, author of ‘Cooking with Love: Ventures into the New Israeli Cuisine’ discuss Passover Food & Wine - Chef Eric Sutter - Executive Chef of Flying V Bar & Grill at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort in Tucson, AZ. - Carl Senna – Co-author ‘Never Charged, Never Convicted: My Life in the Boston Drug Trade’ Plus, Hollywood History with Steve Schneickert! Show Airs Live on March 8, 2015 from 11am PT / 2pm ET – Click Here to Listen Live/Archive!

March 9: Tonto National Monument and Globe, Arizona On This Episode - Libby Schaaf - Chief of Interpretation, Tonto National Monument - Ellen Kretsch – Executive Director GlobeMiami Chamber of Commerce - Kip Culver - Historic Globe Main Street Program & Cobre Valley Center for the Arts - Leana Asberry - Supervisor, Besh-BaGowah Archaeological Park - Rebecca Williams – Dream Manor Inn - Phil Smith – Copper Country Renezvous - R. Michael Wilson – Author ‘Crime & Punishment in Early Arizona’ Show Airs Live on March 9, 2015 at 11am PT / 2pm ET – Click Here to Listen Live / Archive.

Mar. 15: Travel, Trails, Herbal Health, Fashion & Cooking Featured Guests: - Janna Graber – Award-winning travel journalist and editor of ‘Adventures of a Lifetime: Travel Tales from Around the World’ - Travel writer Linda Kissam ‘Food, Wine & Shopping Diva’ discusses Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona - Adam Roberts – CEO of Born Free USA wildlife organization talks about Safe Trails and Trapping - Herbalist Cynthia Johnston of MoonMaid Botanicals discusses Herbs for the Heart - Fashion designer Aggie Garcia of Illusions By Aggie chats about Fashion in Italy - Five Star Chef Ivan Flowers of Top of the Market in San Diego talks Spring Cooking Show Airs Live on March 15, 2015 at 11am PT / 2pm ET – Click Here to Listen Live/Archive! PAGE 66

March 22: Music, Summer Camps & Travel, Writing & Book Marketing Featured Guests: - French-Algerian guitar virtuoso Pierre Bensusan ‘Mozart of Guitar’ celebrates his 40th Anniversary World Tour - Bass player Mitchell Coleman Jr. releases his debut urban jazz album ‘Soul Searching’ - Bobbi DePorter – Co-Founder of SuperCamp and President of Quantum Learning Network - Stephanie Cortez – CEO of Porterville Chamber of Commerce talks Summer in California’s Sequoia Country - Phyllis Hinz & Lamont Mackay ‘The Cooking Ladies’ - Food and travel writers, cookbook authors, and RV vagabonds - Lynn Wiese Sneyd ‘The Book Biz Whiz’ – Author, publicist and owner of LWS Literary Services Show Airs Live on March 22, 2015 at 11am PT / 2pm ET – Click Here to Listen Live / Archive!

Mar. 29: Travel, Volunteering, Cooking, Employment Law – Join Nancy Reid & Lisa Smith – publishers of Big Blend Radio & TV Magazine, for Big Blend Radio’s Champagne Sundays variety show. On This Episode: - Author John Marshall discusses his book ‘WIDEOPEN WORLD: How Volunteering Around the Globe Changed One Family’s Lives Forever’ - Travel writer Linda Kissam ‘Food, Wine & Shopping Diva’ talks about her visit to San Benito County, California - Chef Jeremy Manley of Jeremy’s on the Hill California Style Bistro in Julian, CA shares a Spring Recipe - S. Ward Heinrichs, Esq. of Backstrom & Heinrichs Attorneys at Law in San Diego talks Employment Transportation Law Show Airs Live on March 29, 2015 at 11am PT / 2pm ET – Click Here to Listen Live / Archive.