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ADVERTISER TESTIMONIALS "Our company recently started advertising in South County Magazine and we have already received a great return on our investment! There are obviously many options when deciding where to place your marketing dollars, but for my money, I'm very happy to be partnered with a publication run by people who truly care about helping my business grow. Jody and her team worked with me to develop a campaign that would maximize my exposure to new customers and generate the best possible results. Thank you from all of us here at The Other Guys." - David Marzluf, The Other Guys Awning & Tint Specialists "As local business owners and professionals, we are so lucky to have South County Magazine to reach our target customer through advertising and share our business 'stories" and philosophies through the editorial opportunities. Working with South County Magazine couldn't be easier. I was helped every step of the way - from the photography, writing and design - AND ALL AT NO EXTRA COST. Since participating, my business has tripled - a significant return on my advertising investment. Advertising with South County Magazine is simple, straight-forward and most importantly ... it works!" - Victoria Vannini, Howard Jones Salon, Dana Point

December 2014 Publisher Community Publications LLC. Editor Jody Robinson (714) 596-6611 Art Director David Perez

"It is an absolute pleasure advertising with South County Magazine. Wow! We were stunned by the overwhelming exposure and publicity from being on the front cover of South County Magazine. It put our Assisted Living Community on the map for South County. We felt special and like Rock Stars!"- Aileen and Paul Brazeau, San Clemente Villas by the Sea

Editorial Intern Jackie Grade Editorial Assistant

"Being new to San Juan Capistrano, I wasn’t sure what would be the best avenue for advetising and marketing. Thankfully I picked up a copy of South County Magazine at a restaurant and read the testimonials. They were not like any I’d seen – raving about the staff and Jody’s way of being more like a partner in your business than just an advertising publication. Jody met with me soon after I called. She listened to my goals and concerns, and then shared her thoughts and expertise with regard to what might be most effective for my unique business. Several months later, she is still in easy contact, never seeming like she’s trying to make a sale, but always wanting to be sure I don’t miss an opportunity to grow. I cannot say enough about what an asset Jody and her magazines are to our communities and businesses." - Catherine Darras, Catherine Darras Hypnotherapy, San Juan Capistrano

Alex DeFelice Sales & Marketing Marlo Andersen • Anthony Arcurio Eric Bergstrom, Bergstrom Media Kim Roberson Distribution Managers

"With many options when investing my advertising dollars, I decided to interview and research the local publications before I made a decision. After several interviews, it was clear we would put our trust into Jody and South County Magazine. Jody is a delight to work with, giving above and beyond professionalism and attention to detail. I feel she truly cares about the success of my ad and my business. Thank you Jody, South County Magazine is the best!" - Mary McPherson, Awoken Life Brain Wave Optimization, San Juan Capistrano "After searching for the best bang for my marketing dollar, I thought I hit a wall until I found South County Magazine. Great customer service is a priority to me, so when I met Jody and the staff, I was very pleased. They are very organized with a family feel. They want the best for your business and it shows. The best part of South County Magazine - it works! I have received many amazing clients due to this magazine. Thank you South County Magazine you are the best! !" - Brittany De Anda, Bronze by Brittany, San Juan Capistrano

Rolando Ruiz • David Starr Advertising Inquiries (714) 469-3495 Contributing Writers Beverly Blake • Juris Bunkis, MD, FACS Denise Carson • Christina Dunn Genene Dunn • Stephanie Frisch Jackie Grade • Ann Laurence J.A. Makena Marangu, M.D. • Tom Scott

"We have been in business for 9 years and we have always done advertising to reach new customers. Recently, we started advertising with South County Magazine and the calls began flowing in right away! Jody was so helpful and didn’t push us into a long-term contract. We believe that positive results are the only contract we need. We look forward to continuing to build our business even more with South County Magazine." - Scott & Suzie Sells, Spot Free Windows, San Juan Capistrano "Having built my business on word of mouth in the 40+ years I have been teaching piano, I was a little nervous about the process and cost of advertising in a print publication. But I couldn't be more pleased with how easy the South County Magazine staff made it for me - they really took the time to understand the message I wanted to convey, provided guidance on the best design ideas to communicate that message to potential clients and offered so many 'extras' that I didn't expect - and at no additional cost like complimentary ad design and an editorial feature on my business. There is no better vehicle for marketing your business to the local community than South County Magazine." - Irene Bressler, Tots & Keys, San Clemente DECEMBER 2014



Cover Photography Chris and Nicole Staab, ROF Industries

South County Magazine serves the communities of San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills, Mission Viejo and Aliso Viejo. We will strive to continually improve with each edition and welcome feedback from our readers. For questions or comments, please e-mail the editor at


Q & A with Juris Bunkis, MD, FACS 18


Business Showcase: Pacific Water Solutions 22 Spotlight On: Reel Time Sight and Sound 30


COVER FEATURE: A Mission for Michael A Place of Hope and Healing

Beyond Behavior and Language Can social interaction-based teaching unlock new possibilities of independence for children with autism? 36 Business Showcase: Preferred Kitchen and Bath 38 Local girls selected for prestigious USA Gymnastics' "Future Stars" program in Rhythmic Gymnastics 44

One Big Happy Family, Right? 10 Open Enrollment with the Health Insurance Marketplace: One Year Later, One Year Wiser 14 Spotlight On: Awoken Life - Brainwave Optimization 16




On Perimenopause, Menopause and Andropause 48 Marie Shines for the Premiere of Her Life Review Video 50 Dining Out: Brio Tuscany Grill 60

Nobody enjoys having to go through the probate process at all, especially during one of the most difficult times in life. That is why we are here, to help move the process along as quickly as the court will allow, and take the pressure off the family members by letting us handle the burden. should be directed to our office as we are happy to discuss any questions with all parties involved. We prefer this method because it is the only way we can be sure everyone is getting the proper information. Also, if anybody does not like a decision that is being made, we would prefer them to be upset with our office rather than each other. It never fails that the families that end up fighting with each other the most, and end up delaying the process further because of the fighting, are always those families that tried to discuss things with each other rather than our office.

One Big Happy Family, Right? by Genene Dunn he most common answer received to the question of what is most important in one’s life is: family. Most people feel that family comes before anything else, and for some family is everything that matters to them. Growing up we may have been more concerned about how much fun you have with your friends or how much attention you are able to obtain from the opposite sex, but that trend seems to fade as we settle down in life and become more family-oriented.


Because family is so important to most of us, it is often difficult to communicate to people that family members may not always be the warm, loving characters they currently are when tragedy strikes. Working at a law firm that deals with the trust administration and probate process when a family member dies, we see first-hand what can happen to families when a member is no longer with them and the others are left to deal with what has been left behind. I work on all of our probate files at our firm, and am the person who primarily deals with communicating with our clients and the family members involved with an estate when a family member passes without having a properly funded trust. The number one thing I hear from families at our first meeting to discuss the probate process is, “we are not the kind of family that is going to fight over this, we just want to get it done as quickly as possible.” Almost every family says this in the beginning of the process, and it’s usually true about 10% of the time. As the process continues, family members forget what they were told about the process, and begin to ask each other what is happening and why certain decisions are being made or why things are moving slower than they expected. Rather than directing these questions to our office, family members often discuss them among themselves, give out incorrect information, and cause hurt feelings over things that are often nothing more than a mis-communication.

Nobody enjoys having to go through the probate process at all, especially during one of the most difficult times in life. That is why we are here, to help move the process along as quickly as the court will allow, and take the pressure off the family members by letting us handle the burden. The best advice we can give to avoid family conflict during these difficult times is for everyone to utilize and rely upon the professionals involved in the matter, or hire an attorney to handle the situation instead of trying to take matters into their own hands. Another easy solution to this common problem, is to have a plan in place for your loved ones in case something happens to you. When there is a properly funded trust in place, the family feuds are greatly reduced because the person in charge is only effectuating what decisions were already made by the deceased according to what is written in that person’s trust. Having a trust also keeps the estate out of the probate court, and the family is then able to handle things on a personal level with their attorney rather than trying to convince the court to confirm what they believe is best on some things.

Due to the experience we have with dealing with family members in these troubling times, we always remind our clients and the families that all questions concerning the estate or trust administration

Genene Dunn is a law clerk at the Law Offices of Donald A. Hunsberger. Hunsberger Law is a full-service estate and business planning legal firm, with estate planning attorneys and a licensed, professional fiduciary on staff. Connect with Don Hunsberger by calling (714) 663-8000 or visiting DECEMBER 2014



From (L): Psychiatrist Richard Granese, M.D., Executive Director John "Tripp" H. Smith, III, J.D., Program Director Drew Fisher, CADC-II and Chief Operating Officer Lindsey Fisher.

A Mission for Michael A Place of Hope and Healing by Jody Robinson • photography by Chris and Nicole Staab, ROF Industries


ometimes out of the worst tragedy imaginable comes great strength, passion and resolve. When John "Tripp" H. Smith, III and his wife Loretta's son Michael took his own life on November 10, 2007, their lives were painfully and irrevocably changed. By all accounts, Michael had been very successful in his earlier life, but "devolved" into an unrecognizable person as a result of his depression and dependence on chemicals to self-medicate away his problems. Michael's suicide set into motion a series of events that Tripp says "can be described as nothing short of a miracle." Determined not to let his son's passing be in vain, Tripp and two close friends who knew Michael well - Dr. Richard Granese, Dr. Richard Granese, a well-respected Orange County psychiatrist and Drew Fisher, a certified alcohol and drug counselor - joined together to create A Mission for Michael, Inc. (AMFM), a South Orange County-based facility specializing in drug and alcohol rehab and dual diagnosis treatment.

"Dr. Granese, Drew and I knew we could offer people like Michael and others, and equally importantly, their families, the chance at a new life free from the suffering and interdependence they had endured with no apparent way out," says Tripp, Executive Director. "At A Mission for Michael, we surrounded ourselves with a staff of professionals who are equally as passionate about helping others recover from that hopeless state of mind and body that people like Michael, and their families, suffer."

A Mission for Michael offers 45 or 90-day programs specifically designed for people with co-occuring disorders. Substance abuse disorders and mood and anxiety disorders that develop independently of intoxication, dependence and withdrawal are among the most prevalent psychiatric disorders in the United States. DECEMBER 2014



"With a dual diagnosis, both the mental health issue and the addiction have their own unique symptoms," says Chief Operating Officer Lindsey Fisher. "They also both affect and interact with each other. If a mental health problem goes untreated, the substance use problem usually gets worse and vice versa. Alcohol and drugs are often used to self-medicate the symptoms of depression or anxiety. Unfortunately, substance use causes side effects and in the long run worsens the very symptoms they initially numbed or relieved. Substance use can trigger mental health symptoms. Alcohol and drugs also interact with medications such as antidepressants, antianxiety pills and mood stabilizers. "These are questions we have to identify first and we can create an integrative treatment plan from there." While many programs offer treatment in these areas, a core strength at A Mission for Michael is its size programs here are focused on quality, not quantity - and one M.D. treats patients from beginning to end for a true continuum of care. "We treat a maximum of eight men at a time," says Psychiatrist Richard Granese, M.D., "This allows for full

participation and lets our staff work with our patients and their families on a deeper level. The amount of flexibility in our treatment planning allows for us to mold our program to the individual - not the individual to our program."

John "Tripp" H. Smith, III and Loretta Smith, parents of Michael, in whose honor A Mission for Michael, Inc. was created

At A Mission for Michael, all of its process groups (there are four per day) are run by Masters or Ph.D.-level clinicians and licensed counselors who have many years experience in both chemical dependency and mental illness. "Imagine a safe place of just men, a Clinical Psychologist sitting in a circle with them, no women around to distract or intimidate, and someone decides to open up about a trauma he has experienced," says Fisher. "Perhaps this trauma was a secret for many years and is fueling guilt, shame and remorse, therefore contributing to the substance use. A Mission for Michael creates this space every day, allowing our patients to feel safe while they share and explore some of their life's most challenging issues. Whenever you call A Mission for Michael, you are speaking directly with a team of directors. You'll feel the difference in our treatment philosophy. Because alcoholism, drug addiction and the various accompanying conditions - both mental and physical - are extremely serious, we choose to invest our time and energy in direct, high-quality patient care."

well as individuals who are stepping up into treatment for the first time. "Many individuals are successful starting with and remaining in outpatient," says Tripp. "For others, outpatient can be a great indicator that a higher level of care is needed." In terms of addiction in and of itself, the AMFM team truly understand how challenging and difficult the recovery process can be - and moreover, that it is a process that is nearly impossible to successfully "go it alone."

"The recovery process itself is tremendously moving to watch, for the addictive individual and for his family," says Fisher. "It takes an inordinate amount of strength and vigilance to recover from substance abuse, but when you add in a mental health problem, it can really complicate recovery. Recovery really does start with the brain and body but to truly recover we need to heal our minds, hearts and spirits. If you are struggling with substance use or have a family member who is, get help, locate therapy, find a support group and listen to your doctors. Our staff here are some of the most gifted people I have ever met - they take families in crisis and can mold and shape them back to love and function."

A Mission for Michael believes in an integrated approach to treatment focusing on five areas biological, psycho/social, spiritual, family and relapse prevention Individualized approach The AMFM treatment team understands that whatever is motivating a man to seek help is unique to that individual. For this reason, they strive to create an addiction treatment program that is as individual as he is. Upon admission, clients participate in an intensive interview process that will provide the psychiatrist and treatment team with the information they need to create a customized treatment plan. The treatment team consults with each client and one another throughout the course of an individual’s program to meet his specific needs as he progresses through the process of recovery. "A Mission for Michael believes in an integrated approach to treatment focusing on five areas - biological, psycho/social, spiritual, family and relapse prevention," says Fisher. "Biological refers to the medical treatment, brain chemistry and psychiatric evaluation/stabilization, genetic factors, fitness, sleep, food, etc. through individual sessions with our psychiatrist and clinical team members, proper medication management and simultaneously treating both the substance use problem and the client's mental health problem by the same team of professionals and the same doctor." Psycho/social addresses personal, emotional, family and community issues. Clients are taught healthy coping skills and strategies to eliminate substance use, cope with emotions and triggers and strengthen relationships. A Mission for Michael offers a continuing (after care) option for individuals who are making the transition back into society, work and their homes after participating in its program. This outpatient program is designed for those stepping down from more intensive treatment as

Perhaps the best testament to the successes achieved at A Mission for Michael can be summed up in the words of Sam H., who experienced recovery through its personalized drug and alcohol treatment program: "A Mission For Michael quite literally saved my life. It’s the treatment center that becomes your second family. The staff members are in recovery themselves, and their personal experience with addiction is translated into beautiful empathy for their newly sober residents. The dual-diagnosis program treats underlying psychiatric issues with skill and respect. Life is structured and purposeful at Mission, days being comprised of group sessions, 12-step meetings, exercise, meditation, and more. Individual therapy and family therapy brings true healing to spiritual wounds ... I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to earn the start of my sobriety there." One parent whose son experienced recovery at AMFM writes: “A Mission for Michael is a true gem in the recovery community; it is a true dual diagnosis program. What makes A Mission for Michael unique is the accessibility to the extraordinary management team of Drew, Tripp and Dr. Granese. The consistent and daily communication between the counselors and Dr. Granese is so important when dealing with mental health and the comorbidity of addiction issues. They provide a weekly family component lead by excellent group leaders and comfortable homes with a great support staff. In addition, A Mission for Michael becomes an extension of family – someone to reach out to and can depend on when the road to recovery feels impossible. They offer hope and solution, not just for your loved one but for the family as a whole. To quote Al-Anon 'they say what they mean, mean what they say and never say it mean.' My son has been through many programs – A Mission for Michael was where his sobriety held. They gave us back our son and our family. My gratitude overflows for A Mission for Michael for saving my son’s life.”

For more information, call (949) 489-0950 or visit DECEMBER 2014



Open Enrollment with the Health Insurance Marketplace: One Year Later, One Year Wiser by Stephanie Frisch

t was uncharted territory last year. There were hiccups, glitches, rumors, misinformation, you name it. One year later I have 200-plus enrollments completed. Some “On-Exchange” via Covered California and some “Offmeans which Exchange” helping my clients apply directly to the insurance carrier for their insurance if they made too much money to receive financial help paying their premiums by receiving a federal subsidy (which is the only reason to apply for insurance through the by the way).


Open enrollment is the same timeframe on and off exchange; Nov. 15th –Feb. 15th. If you want coverage by 1/1/15, you need to apply by 12/15/14. Applying 12/16/14 up to 1/15/15 will get you a Feb. 1st effective date. Applying 1/16/15-2/15/15 will give you a March 1st effective and then enrollment with be closed for the year unless you have a qualifying event. Medical networks and doctor participation has been the biggest source of confusion. Insurance companies offering insurance plans on Covered California offer the same plans “OffExchange” and the network of doctors associated with that insurance company is the same whether you applied for Blue Shield (for example) through Covered California, or directly with Blue Shield. Anthem Blue Cross converted to an HMO and an EPO option last year. Anyone with an Anthem policy starting 1/1/14 and beyond had to choose either the Anthem HMO network or the Anthem EPO network. In Orange County there were and are no PPO options for individual plans, and many doctor’s fell out of network with Anthem. A lot of doctor offices thought they could just participate “in-network” for “off-exchange” enrollments. By thinking this they unknowingly chose to participate with Covered California. Front office staff was directed that they DIDN’T take Covered California, and began turning people away. Yet they were showing participating in the accurate and updated online directory. Frustrated discussions and confusion ensued in many waiting rooms. I am hopeful this is all behind us and that the doctors have relied on staff to learn more about the whole process the ACA brings overall. If you DON’T qualify for Covered California federal subsidy funds, then I will show you options for Cigna PPO and Assurant (Aetna PPO network). They don’t participate on Covered California, so consequently networks are broader and are nationwide too. They have more flexible plan options as well.

Stephanie Frisch is the owner of Insurance 101 and is an independent insurance broker dedicated to helping others make “educated decisions” about their insurance choices when it comes to Medicare, Long-Term Care Planning, The Health Insurance Marketplace-Covered California and Life Insurance. For answers to your questions, or an inhome, no-fee consultation, call (949) 351-2443. DECEMBER 2014




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and holds patents for original research such as; changing of molecular structures of plastics and optical thin film production using gas plasma technology. It's easy to see why someone might think of Mary as an "engineer." Clients who met Mary in another career incarnation as the owner of Elegant Wall Painting where Mary’s original art hung in galleries across the county and she provided fine wall finishes and murals (she apprenticed at the age of 15 with Master Mural Painter Ricardo Estrada), understandably think of Mary as an "artist."

Awoken Life Founder Mary McPherson (R) and Michelle Newell, Brainwave Optimization Technician

Awoken Life

Awakening Your Brain's Limitless Potential by Jody Robinson • photography by Lisa Baker, Lisa Renee Photography

For the many clients she has helped overcome a variety of conditions ranging from anxiety, anger and addictions to insomnia, migraines and depression, Mary is simply "amazing." Through Awoken Life and Brainwave Optimization, Mary is able to combine her education, skills, talent and training with a deep desire and passion for helping people live their best lives. If you ask Mary, she'll tell you that all of these descriptors - and more - are accurate. Which is exactly the point - "when you are able to awaken your brain's true potential, there is virtually no limit to what you can believe and achieve." "Your brain is the control system for your body," says Mary. "Brain balance and harmony are essential to overall well-being and optimal cognitive, emotional and physical performance," says Mary. "Once the brain is balanced, the body follows. This condition of balance and harmony for the brain is known as homeostasis. Once you’ve achieved homeostasis, you’ll enjoy new states of self-regulation and relaxation, leading you to think more clearly, perform more successfully and experience a higher degree of hope and happiness."

When I sat down to chat with Mary McPherson, founder of the San Juan Capistrano- Brainwave Optimization is a unique highly scientific, based Awoken Life, it was immediately evident that Mary’s true desire is to help people. yet holistic approach to brain balance. Over 70,000 people have successfully participated, and the number As I entered Awoken Life to the sound of a waterfall and a sweet fragrance in the air, grows every day.”We start with an intensive scientific it felt as if I had walked in to a sanctuary. Michelle Newell (office manager and brain- evaluation of your brainwaves, called an Assessment wave optimization technologist) greeted me and asked if I would like some water or using a very advanced computer program," she says. tea. “We want our clients to feel at home, relaxed and safe, this is a place welcoming "We determine where the imbalances and frequency those who are ready to get past the conditions of an imbalanced brain,” says Mary levels are and from that we are able to tell if you’ve experienced trauma. We can 'draw a picture' of what you McPherson, a Certified Brainwave Optimization Specialist. may be feeling or living through just by looking at the Awoken Life offers a variety of services but specializes in Brainwave Optimization assessment results. For anyone interested in finding (something you might have heard about on Oprah, read in the pages of People mag- out more about why they feel the way they do, an asazine or in science journals). “Brainwave Optimization (scientific name “HIRREM”) is sessment on its own can be very revealing and helpful. for people who would like to get back to living a happy and more balanced life with a "We can then create a plan customized to your specific natural, holistic approach. Brainwave Optimization is a clinically proven EEG-based needs. The five day process of Optimization is always technology (research conducted at Wake Forest School of Medicine) consisting of a centered on your goals and helping you achieve overweek-long intensive program which leaves you centered, balanced and recharged. all balance and harmony. You can relax in our zero“Some of the things we help people with are anxiety, ADD/ADHD, addictions, anger, gravity chair while listening to audio feedback being depression, brain injuries, panic attacks, PTSD, obsessive thinking and insomnia or created by your own brainwave frequencies and mirrored back through this advanced technology (this sleep disorders.” clinically proven process can be viewed at www.awokFor my part, I am convinced the best testament to what Awoken Life is and the pro-, under “What is Brainwave Optimizagram's ability to truly "awaken your brain's limitless potential" is Mary herself. While tion?”)." interviewing Mary for this editorial feature, I discovered her to be an inspirational example of self-empowerment and what we as individuals are capable of achieving when Brainwave Optimization is one of the many tools that we refuse to be defined by labels that others - and more often that we put on our- Awoken Life utilizes in order to bring about a more fulfilled and enriched life for all of their clients. Its unique selves. I found Mary to truly be the modern face of a renaissance woman. technology is like exercise for the brain. “We focus on Mary, who holds a degree in Chemical Engineering, spent her early career as a very the parts of the brain that may not be functioning at successful Materials Science Engineer working for world-leading companies like their peak because of traumas or injuries sustained DuPont and Himont Advanced Materials. She has published several technical reports throughout the course of ones’ life,” Mary explains. (continued on page 24)




ROF Industries Inc.

For most of us, photography is merely a “point and shoot” experience. ROF Industries begins with a carefully conceived concept, supported by true technical knowhow. “Utilizing experience in large market newsrooms as well as high-end video production, we are able to work with clients to deliver a product that always seems to exceed their expectations.” They also have equipment that sets them apart from competitors, such as a quadcopter, numerous GoPros, and an ENG video camera (broadcast quality camera.)

In a given week, projects can range from a toddler's birthday party, to anniversaries, weddings, and memorial services. ROF Industries adds that personal touch, ordering thank you cards, canvases, albums, magnets, and mugs, and producby Chris Mays ing slide shows comprised of family photos. nspired by her father's legacy, Nicole Staab and her husband Chris have applied 15 Oftentimes, Chris captures these events on years of entrepreneurial experience to a thriving local business. "My father recently video, resulting in personalized short stories passed away, and honoring him is what inspired ROF Industries," says Nicole. "He families can enjoy for years to come. taught me everything I know and it's the best way to show him his lessons were For business clientele, ROF Industries does heard.” everything from showcasing homes for realtors, From families to large corporations, ROF Industries has a diverse clientele. Photography to photographing and videographing hotels services include weddings, anniversary parties, corporate events, and product shots, while across the globe. Most recently, they filmed a hyvideo offerings include script writing, editing, and marketing. In the area of print, they brid car symposium, an embryo transplant for a surrogacy company, a promotional video for an specialize in larger jobs, mainly catalogs and magazines. insurance agency, and a video for a magician. “Video is the future,” says Chris. “Our clients unFor business clientele, ROF Industries does everything from derstand that they need it to promote their comshowcasing homes for realtors, to photographing and panies and engage their viewers.”

Full Service Video, Photography and Printing: It's a Family Affair


videographing hotels across the globe. Nicole, whose main background is print, was born and raised in Huntington Beach. Chris has extensive news video experience and moved here from Hawaii in 2009. “Together, there's nothing that we can’t achieve for clients, who often become lifelong friends," says Nicole. "We deliver projects that look more expensive than they really are, and customers are 100 percent satisfied." With a shared love of travel, wildlife photography, and travel with their children Haven and Adrian, Nicole and Chris are free to work on creative projects of their choice. “We do shoots all over the world,” says Nicole. “And the kiddos join us wherever we go.”

Connect with Nicole and Chris by calling (714) 801-7924 or visit DECEMBER 2014



Pacific Water Solutions

scale and other harmful contaminants at the door. So the water that comes out of every dispenser in your house - faucets, baths, showers, toilets, kitchen, laundry - is clean and safe.”

by Heather Evans • photo by Melisa Chandler, Chandler Photography

When you contact Pacific Water Solutions, you get a water professional on the phone right away, not an answering service with a promise to return the call. Because Mike and his team take the time to answer questions and work with your budget, they have hundreds of happy customers (Google “Pacific Water Solutions” to read online, unbiased reviews).

rowing up in rural Idaho, I was lucky enough to live in a house that got its water from a well. My family never worried about chemicals like chlorine, calcium, magnesium or sediment like those found in the municipal water supply. I’ve heard so many people say they drink bottled water as a solution, but that doesn’t solve the fact that it’s wasteful and expensive or that you still absorb these chemicals through your skin. Bottled water doesn’t solve the problem of washing your dishes and watering your vegetables with these contaminates.


The solution is more cost-effective and easier to implement than you might think. A full-service water filtration company, Pacific Water Solutions sells, services and installs water filtration and purification systems to all of OC and unlike many of its competitors, has retail locations where customers can check out the product options – and get an education on the benefits of both types of systems - before they buy. For Owner Mike Dougherty and his staff, no job is too small. Anywhere you use water, they can sell and service water filtration equipment for you - and their passion is to educate customers about the importance of drinking and using safe water. “A water softener uses salt and electricity to remove calcium and magnesium from the water, while a whole house filtration system doesn’t use salt or electricity,” says Mike. “It connects to the main water line coming to your home and essentially serves as a point-of-entry-filter to stop dirt, sediment, rust,

To connect with Mike, call (949) 951-9800 or visit




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(continued from page 16)

"When our brain is balanced, our bodies and our lives can achieve well-being and a higher degree of performance and happiness." Awoken Life is dedicated to helping people achieve their potential, through Brainwave Optimization, in addition they offer packages including guided visualization as part of the process. “Guided visualization helps the client to consciously work through their challenges, while Brainwave Optimization works on the subconscious and below subconscious levels.” Awoken Life also offers a variety of services such as Life Coaching, Hypnotherapy and The BioMat - an infrared mat with NASA created technology used to improve circulation, relieve pain and more.

Another client, Penny from Mission Viejo echoes Vince's sentiment and adds "Two longtime friends from separate parts of my life said 'The old Penny is back!' and our three adult children claim there is a 'night and day difference' and that I am "so much calmer, so centered.' I'm thinking so much more clearly. What a blessing! “My goal is for my clients to walk away with a greater sense of selfempowerment and a clearer vision of themselves and the world around them," says Mary. Mary is also available for speaking engagements, workshops and private coaching sessions.

Scrolling through the many client testimonials on her website, it’s clear that Mary has found her true calling. “I cannot put into words how much Awoken Life has changed my life," says Vince, Dana Point. “Alcohol dependency, depression, spelling and even my fear of heights suddenly became manageable. I went in to this a total skeptic and was made in to a believer. Thank you for giving me a life I never thought possible.” Another client, Penny from Mission Viejo echoes Vince's sentiment and adds "Two longtime friends from separate parts of my life said 'The old Penny is back!' and our three adult children claim there is a 'night and day difference' and that I am "so much calmer, so centered.' I'm thinking so much more clearly. What a blessing! The depression, anxiety, OCD and ADD are virtually gone." (Note: Penny underwent two intensives to achieve these results).

Brainwave Optimization with RTBTM is not intended to treat, cure, heal, or diagnose any disease, mental illness. Brainwave Optimization is intended to balance and harmonize brainwaves. Individual results may vary.

For a new approach to total brain wellness, call Awoken Life at (949) 661-6909 or visit




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Advanced Provider

Mary Catherine McPherson, C.Ht.

30320 Rancho Viejo Rd. San Juan Capistrano


"We take our clients and what we do seriously because at the end of the day, everyone should either be in the home of their dreams or keep the one they love so much. To some people, it’s just paperwork and numbers. But to us, it’s personal. It’s home."

UAMC President Al W. Hensling

“What it boils down to is that we’ve grown substantially because we have the ability to adapt to the ever-changing marketplace,” says UAMC President Al W. Hensling. “We are in the home business, the helping-people business. Yes, it requires us to at times work around the clock. Yes, we have to keep up-to-date on the latest products and regulations. We take our clients and what we do seriously because at the end of the day, everyone should either be in the home of their dreams or keep the one they love so much. To some people, it’s just paperwork and numbers. But to us, it’s personal. It’s home." Their incredibly impressive, rare, referral-only business model may also be the key to understanding their success, as customers flock just to see if UAMC truly walks the walk. To them, offering you efficient, cost-effect and timely service is just a day’s business. These days, most companies feel the need to plaster those words all over their advertisements. UAMC doesn’t need to express that they go above and beyond, they just think that it should come standard. “I guess you could say we just want to help how we can. Since our business is referral based, we truly get to know your family and friends. UAMC continues to evolve with new products and financing solutions to the ever-changing Southern California real estate market. While many have given up the idea of owning a home or even refinancing, UAMC holds to the knowledge that today’s new and innovative programs are making it easier than ever to purchase or refinance.

United American Mortgage Company

“The ‘Mortgage Meltdown’ created a great deal of uncertainty in the marketplace and made it difficult for so many to secure financing," says Al. "We understand that a lot of people are scared to see where they stand and that’s ok. We just want you to know that it doesn’t have to be this way. Most of our clients feel the same way. Some people tell us they didn’t even want to find out about their options in the first place because they didn’t understand the jargon. Well, we aren’t the company that just explains things once. We’re with you step by step, no matter what."

Want to put your toe in the water? Visit their website: to view their mortgage calculators to get a head-start. You can also apply online, get a custom quote and read more about the loan programs they offer. If you’ve never had a loan before, consider their handy ‘Loan Process’ tool. They take you step-by-step through what you can expect when applying for You’re almost tired of reading about it but it’s true: the mortgage meltdown and receiving a loan. hurt more than a few and people are still trying to recover. It’s hard to know whom to trust. With many mortgage companies competing and failing, “If you’re considering anything in our sector then consider us the UAMC has found itself expanding into 9 states. Originally formed to provide right team for the job,” Al says. “Call us, visit us online, or stop by for the specific needs of Southern California borrowers seeking mortgage the office anytime. We’re always on standby to see how we can products tailored for them, UAMC has made it their personalized business help you. Don’t let the mortgage meltdown of yesterday affect where you’re at today. We’ve got the cutting edge techniques and to get to know and help you. knowledge to help your unique situation. We’re ready to meet And since so many of these mortgage companies are failing, what is UAMC your challenges and assist you into getting or keeping your home!” doing different?


rusted, tried and true. That’s the reason why Irvine’s United American Mortgage has been successful for over 20 years. Since 1993, UAMC specializes in providing mortgage-financing solutions to homeowners and homebuyers.

United American Mortgage Company is located at 19782 MacArthur Blvd #250 Irvine, CA 92612. Connect with Al and his team by calling (949) 250-1300, Ext. 110 or visit DECEMBER 2014



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take you from start to finish for the home theater or sound system of your dreams. “Usually there is a part of the job that you find you just can’t do by yourself,” says Skip, who has overseen the design and installation of thousands of home theater and sound systems over the course of forty years in the business. “You get your brand new television home, you’re so excited, then you realize you need to move an outlet or none of the cabinets you can find will fit your space. We’re here to make sure you get the equipment that will give you what you want and the system that will work with that equipment, without leaving you to fend for yourself.”

Breaking free from the big box for your perfect home theater system When you started planning for your ultimate home theater set-up and sound system, did you plot your perfect flat screen location and find that the outlets were placed at exactly the right distance, with the perfect electrical scenario for everything you wanted to do? Could you find the right media cabinetry for your particular space – cabinetry that wouldn’t catch on fire from the heat of the equipment, or that would simply look good in the room? Did you understand half of what the televisions, receivers and other devices could do, and did you have anyone to hold your hand to make sure you weren’t overspending for what you wanted?

Skip opened the doors at ReelTime Sight & Sound in 1983. Today, the technicians and designers that Skip assigns to clients are all ReelTime Sight & Sound employees, knowledgeable in all home theater and sound technologies. First, they work closely with you to determine what you’re looking for. Then they custom design every aspect of the project, from wiring to custom-built cabinets, frames, or built-in wall designs. Finally, licensed, in-house contractors install your entertainment system with care and precision. There are a couple of things that people may not think about when they embark upon the road to their own home entertainment system. “You need to think about your home theater goals,” says Skip. “You don’t have to do everything at once – you can do it bit by bit – but if you know where you’re going, you’ll save money and when it’s all said and done, you’ll have exactly what you want and what you will actually use. We’re here to help you determine your goals.” Skip is also an advocate for getting what you’ll use, which is part of the design and planning process.

“You can buy everything you want to, but if you can’t operate it, what’s the point?” he says. “There’s the television, DVD and Blue-ray; there’s the receiver, there’s Apple TV… it’s all great, but how do you get them to work together? We’re big advocates of the universal remote. Not everyone knows how to get the most out of their systems Yeah, neither did I. with one powerful remote – they’re not expensive, but the best ones are computer-based. We’ll set that up for you Big box retailers, the professed champions of value, are happy to sell you any so you’re getting the most out of your custom system.” home theater and sound equipment you think you might like, and send you off to figure it out at home. That’s what they do. And that’s all they do. It’s easy to assume that personal service is expensive, but a conversation with Skip and the experts at ReeTime Sight If you want the home theater sys- & Sound is free. Ultimately, in planning your purchases for tem that you envision, you need the right outcome, you’re likely to save money while avoidSkip Myers of ReelTime Sight & ing chilling setbacks. The only chilling you want to be Sound, the guy you can lean on to doing is in front of your fantasy home theater system.

Connect with Skip Myers and ReelTime Sight & Sound by calling (949) 240-0555 or stop by their showroom at 26381 Via De Anza in San Juan Capistrano. DECEMBER 2014



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Beyond Behavior and Language Can social interaction-based teaching unlock new possibilities of independence for children with autism?

by Jody Robinson

by Jody Robinson


s heart wrenching as the prospect of an empty nest can be, parents are ultimately interested in seeing their children lead happily independent lives. For most parents independence is about their children simply growing up; becoming young adults who possess the life skills to support themselves and their own families is pretty much a matter of course. But for parents of children with cognitive disabilities like autism, independence for their children is not so certain. In many ways these parents’ primary question becomes, “Will my child be able to live an independent life?”

Dr. Karina Poirier, Psy.D., BCBA-D of Irvine’s Center for Social Cognition has made it her mission to help autistic and cognitively impaired children develop a capacity for independent thinking and the possibility of becoming independent adults. And parents are the key. As a young intern in the Netherlands and France, Dr. Poirier had the opportunity to work with some of the most talented European experts in the field of cognitive impairment, who were helping these children learn and develop through social interactions. Through this approach Dr. Poirier saw some amazing things happen. She watched as the I.Q.s of many children increased by as much as 40 points; she witnessed young adults with severe mental impairment stand up and give speeches and function socially in ways that people didn’t think was possible – all as a result of using social interaction-based teaching. DECEMBER 2014


Inspired by her experience with these extreme cases and extreme results, for her doctorate Dr. Poirier decided to apply the method to children with autism. Most of the therapies in the U.S. for young children with autism focus on basic language and behavior. But Dr. Poirier believed she could get better results with the social interaction-based teaching she learned in Europe. The result of her doctorate research was the Poirier Social Potential Curriculum, which teaches self-regulation as an intervention component in the early years. These are referred to as executive functions (EFs), and are often omitted as intervention goals for young children due to a misconception that EFs are considered higher-level mental functions, and they are believed to be acquired at a later development date. Because of this wrong assumption, many of the programs for young children diagnosed with autism focus on basic language and behavior. In contrast, research suggests a gradual development of mental processes that is influenced by experience and interactions with more knowledgeable adults or peers. “Social interaction is something that we do naturally; we don’t even realize we’re doing it,” says Dr. Poirier. “To help children with cognitive impairment we have to stop and be aware of what we’re doing. We have to teach them, but we cannot think for them. Unfortunately most therapies and methods are teaching children not to think on their own, but to have other people think for them. My curriculum teaches kids how to think on their own.” For years Dr. Poirier has been providing training for clinicians and inperson therapy for individuals, and she has traveled extensively, speaking and teaching about social interaction-based teaching. But parents are the ones she most wants to empower. “Children can be taught how to think, how to interact with others and


When should parents begin working with their children through social interaction-based teaching? As early as possibl, says Dr. Poirier, especially if the children have been identified as cognitively impaired or on the autism spectrum. how to solve problems – but that happens by helping them build their understanding day by day. That’s why parents are the best teachers.” She began providing workshops to parents wherein she would cover her curriculum, teaching parents how to be the teachers. Children with autism, says Dr. Poirier, have to be explicitly taught how to read emotions and integrate them; they need to learn how to remember the timeline of their day, to plan and solve problems along the way; they need to learn how to pretend, and build mental images – if they can’t do that, they can’t read other people’s intentions. These are the kinds of abilities that open up the possibility of independence in life. “Normal play is how average children get a lot of the sensory input they need to naturally build these abilities, but children with autism, especially after they get labeled as autistic, get shifted into a cookie cutter treatment model and don’t get the same kind of play that other children get,” says Dr. Poirier. “We have to focus on developmental milestones, and help them go from one milestone to the next, rather than focusing on the label.” When should parents begin working with their children through social interaction-based teaching? As early as possible, says Dr. Poirier, especially if the children have been identified as cognitively impaired or on the autism spectrum. Dr. Poirier’s approach is working. Children who have attended her early intervention program are fully mainstreamed in general education. They are excelling academically and socially without classroom support. Their autism label is considered residual. Parents can learn the Poirier Social Potential Curriculum in two ways: in-person and online. Dr. Poirier offers two-day workshops where parents and clinicians can learn the principles of social interaction-based teaching and how to implement them. The next workshop in Orange County will be held in Irvine March 19-20, 2015. For those who want to learn the curriculum on their own time, from anywhere, the Center for Social Cognition now offers topic-by-topic, easy-to-manage online modules. In both scenarios, the Poirier Social Potential Curriculum teaches strategies for: • Enhancing and improving the development of basic cognitive skills through social interactions Integrating higher-order thinking skills into social learning experiences in order to promote selfawareness and self-regulation • Developing the ability to empathize with others’ feelings, including complex emotions, such as pride and shame • Taking others’ perspectives using interpersonal interactions • Developing the essential skills for building meaningful relation ships, such as lasting friendships • Promoting language as a social tool for communicating messages in appropriate contexts to achieve social and communicative competence • Acquiring conflict resolution skills to implement when problem situations with peers arise

Visit to register for a workshop or online learning, or to find out more about Dr. Karina Poirier and the Poirier Social Potential Curriculum. DECEMBER 2014



Different by Design Preferred Kitchen and Bath’s “back to basics” business philosophy helps company thrive in today’s challenging economy by Jody Robinson ou can get anything you want in life if you'll just help enough other people get what they want." - Zig Ziglar, author and motivational speaker


believed we could do better, which would improve people's remodeling experience and provide us a good living.” So far, the couple’s concept seems to have served them well. Their full service interior design and remodeling firm, specializing in kitchen and bathroom remodels, has not only survived, but thrived in today’s challenging economic climate.

This is the underlying philosophy upon which David and Julie Allen built their Lake Forest-based business. At Preferred Kitchen and Bath, the Allens and their team “think like homeowners” asking themselves "Knowing what we know, what would we do if we were spending our own hard earned money on this project?" and "If we were the client, what would we want to know and how would we want to be treated?" “We don't think like contractors or salespeople even though we are both,” says David. “It starts with the attitude of the owners, which becomes the company culture and inevitably guides the day to day actions. We have attracted to our small firm a wonderful family of designers and craftsmen which in turn help our clients imagine what they want and then make it a reality. Are we perfect? Hardly, but you don't need to be perfect to be "Best in Show.” In 2003, David and his wife Julie saw an opportunity to bring their interests and skills together in interior design and renovation. David brought over 40 years of experience in construction to the business, while his wife had worked for years in clothing design and manufacturing. “We believed the Orange County market was ready for a remodeling company that thought and behaved differently,” says David. “Many companies had operated here for a long time and had become complacent regarding the way they served homeowners. We

“As you work with us you will see that we are committed to helping you get what will make you happy and not just selling you a bunch of stuff to make a buck,” says David. “We have invested extensively in computers, software and displays so that you can get as clear a picture as possible what your kitchen or bath will look like before you spend one red cent.” David and his team of professionals understand that when you decide to remodel your kitchen or bathroom, you are paying for more than just cabinets, counters, and fixtures. You are paying for designing, planning, scheduling, communicating and installing - a total remodeling experience culminating in a rewarding outcome or finished product. Happy customers like Joe and Sheri DiPrima of Mission Viejo attest to the “Preferred” experience by saying that "I could tell after meeting you, Julie, that Preferred Kitchen & Bath was the way to go. You were very helpful in some decisions we weren't sure about but you were never pushy. I have to say the whole process could not have gone more smoothly. Also, we found the workers were polite, knowledgeable and best of all - cleaned up every night before they left. We would definitely recommend Preferred Kitchen & Bath to anyone thinking of a kitchen remodel. Thanks again for all your help. Our kitchen is perfect & I love cooking in it."

Are you dreaming of a beautiful kitchen or bath remodel that fits your budget and lifestyle? Experience the personal attention and professional service of the Preferred Kitchen & Bath team by calling 949.830.6300, stopping by their showroom at 22600 Lambert St., Bldg.A, Suite 709 in Lake Forest or visiting DECEMBER 2014







Tuttle’s Carpet One Floor and Home by Jody Robinson any local businesses boast great customer testimonials of recent transactions, but few can credit true “relationships” with clients dating back 50+ years.


Because expert installation is so important, Kevin and Mary Gail only work with highly trained professionals who can install complex jobs and handle high-quality materials.

Kevin and MaryGail Hentzen, owners of the Laguna Niguel-based Tuttle’s Carpet One Floor and Home, have had clients bring in their old invoices from carpet installations in the 1960s.

The company’s growth in more recent history can be traced to Kevin’s decision to move the operation to a more visible location Laguna Niguel in 1994. In addition to enjoying increased foot traffic, Kevin joined Carpet One two years later, which lent itself to capturing even more market share – for a variety of reasons. Carpet One is a co-operative that has over 1,000 stores worldwide. Although all are independently owned and operated, because they are a co-op, Carpet One can negotiate the best prices and warranties as a large group. For example, Carpet One offers “the Beautiful Guaranty” which allows the customer up to 120 days from installation to have the carpet replaced for ANY reason (even if they decide they don’t like the color). The carpet and the labor are covered. No questions asked.

Back then, the store was located in Laguna Beach and owned by Mr. and Mrs. Tuttle. In 1980, the Hentzen family purchased the business and young Kevin took over its dayto-day operations, working alongside his father, Gene. Under the elder Hentzen’s tutelage for the following decade, Kevin honed his skills by learning the intricacies of all aspects of the flooring industry. Today, Kevin brings more than 30 years of expertise to every job. His wife, Mary Gail, specializes in window coverings and with years of experience in their own right, staff design consultants Cathi, Nancy and Lori round out the Tuttle’s Carpet One team. “Much of our business is from customers that I’ve known for years. It is more of a relationship with the client,” says Kevin. “People enjoy the personal experience that you won’t find in a big box store. It is very rewarding to beautify people’s homes. It’s a great feeling when the client calls to say how much they love their new floor.” Tuttle’s Carpet One specializes in all types of carpet, hardwood flooring, tile, stone, area rugs, vinyl and window coverings. They carry top brands such as Karastan, Masland, Lees, Armstrong, and Hunter Douglas and offer the largest wool carpet selection in Orange County.

Another offer that only Carpet One offers is the “Healthy Living Installation.” This is a process that cleans the sub-floor with a HEPI-VAC and the installers then spray the subfloor with Healthinex anti bacterial spray. Then they use a special carpet cushion that minimizes symptoms from mold, mildew, allergens and pollens. The bottom line is that Tuttle’s Carpet One Floor and Home offers the great advantage of the buying power as a group while still retaining the independence and specialty of a small store.

Connect with Kevin and Mary Gail by visiting the Tuttle’s Carpet One Floor and Home showroom at 27751 La Paz Rd. in Laguna Niguel or by calling (949) 831-1332 DECEMBER 2014







South Coast Shutter and Shades “I feel that we are successful due to the quality of customer service we give our customers, which in turn creates our repeat and referral business,” says Donna. “Although there may be providers of similar products, there is no one that can match our superior customer service – from showing up on time, making precise measurements and flawless installations - and with a professional ‘can do’ attitude.” perating honestly and with integrity has served as the foundation for the continued success of the Dana Point-based South Coast Shutter and Shades. With 25 years in the window covering industry, Owners Tom and Donna Shuster launched their own company after realizing that “on our own we would be able to offer quality products in an honest environment to our customers, as well as servicing the products we sell.”


Specializing in custom shutters, blinds, shades, security shutters and everything in between, Tom and Donna offer free in-home consultations for design as well as measuring, they always include free professional installation and prefer to bring all of the samples to each client’s home to go over the assorted styles and many color options to match the existing interior.

Tom adds that “our pricing with unbeatable discounts, sales support and the fact that we offer our customers an in-house design team at no additional charge is the first step in setting us apart from our competition. I am proud to say that we have built a reputation in the business for having the highest quality, best beauty, fit and finish and value available. All of our products come with a lifetime warranty.”

To connect with Tom and Donna, call (949) 388-8344 or visit




for both coach and gymnast,” says ISRG co-founder and coach, Anastasia Fomin. Annaliese Dragan was one of six girls that made it into the National Youth Squad Camp and proudly earned the title and position as Future Star. “This is a proud moment for ISRG as one out of thirty girls was tested nationally, two from our school were selected to be tested and one made Future Stars,” says Fomin.

Future Stars Local girl selected for prestigious USA Gymnastics’ “Future Stars” program in Rhythmic Gymnastics by Christine Dunn Tis the season when competitions begin for rhythmic gymnasts and Laguna Hills-based Irene School of Rhythmic Gymnastics is going for gold.

ISRG has already competed in USA Gymnastic-approved events this competitive season, including the Los Angeles Rhythmic Academy where ISRG gymnasts showed very good results in each level of competition. Each ISRG gymnast that competed stood on the winning podium. “One of our greatest achievements this year was being selected to participate in the National Competition, the Stars and Stripes Cup,” says Fomin. The Stars and Stripes Cup is a national competition for rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline, synchronized trampoline, double mini-trampoline and tumbling. Approximately 1,000 athletes, coaches and officials participated in these combined events. ISRG was also personally invited to participate in the Elite Squad Camp in Texas in November. Annaliese Dragan represented the school and is the youngest to have been invited to this prestigious camp. Becoming a future Olympian requires dedication and a passion for the sport of Rhythmic Gymnastics. Girls begin their training as early as four years old. There are different levels of courses offered to girls who just want to explore the sport and art as compared to those girls who are serious competitors.

The Irene School of Rhythmic Gymnastics (ISRG) has been preparing rhythmic gymnasts all year long for various competitions. Several of their student gymnasts have been invited to compete in many events this season. The school’s goal? To develop the next rhythmic gymnastics gold medalist.

Thinking about Rhythmic Gymnastics? If your child likes to dance around and flutter like a butterfly, she may want to try out ISRG’s beginner’s course. This course is great for girls ages five to seven years old. It teaches fundamental and rhythmic gymnastics skills with the goal of developing motor skills, strength, flexibility, attention span and listening skills through creative themes and lesson plans tailored to the pre-school level child. Colorful apparatuses (ribbons, balls, and hoops) bring a lot of excitement and enhance the child’s hand-eye coordination.

Rhythmic Gymnastics marked its debut in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Although a relatively new Olympic sport, Rhythmic Gymnastics has been growing in popularity in the United States. This beautiful sport has appeals to young girls and parents because it helps children grow in coordination, balance, good posture, elegance, strength, flexibility, discipline and confidence.

Recreational Rhythmic Gymnastics is the best way for girls 6 years old and up to discover the beauty and elegance of the sport. The recreational program is perfect for the beginner athlete, or for girls who may not be interested in a competitive environment. This program is designed to develop basic movements, coordination, concentration, rhythm and team skills.

ISRG is thrilled that two of their students, sisters Christina Dragan, age 7, and Annaliese Dragan, age 9, were selected to be tested for the USA Gymnastics “Future Stars” program. Both the girls started training at ISRG in June 2012 and have been shinning stars for ISRG.

Competitive programs start at Levels 3-4. In order to gain a spot in the competitive program girls are tested for flexibility, strength, grace and coordination. The program develops the beginning skills required to advance through the competitive USA Gymnastics system. The classes are structured so that the girls learn basic rhythmic gymnastics body technique, fundamental apparatus technique, dance preparation and choreography of age-appropriate routines.

The USA Gymnastics Future Stars program tests rhythmic gymnasts to determine if they are suited for an elite level of Rhythmic Gymnastics. USA Gymnastics is a non-profit organization that was established in 1963 and is dedicated to creating a viable national program for gymnastics in the United States.

Levels 5, 6 and 7 are invitational programs for girls 8 years old and up that prepare them for national and international competitions. Their competitive program involves a floor routine and three apparatus routines choreographed to feature their best qualities and strengths. The goal for the preparation is through participation at invitational, state and regional meets to qualify for the National Championships.

“The goal of this very elite camp is to bring together the best of best and see the potential of these girls in hopes of identifying a future Olympian. It is at this camp that coaches and gymnasts learn to develop presentation and technique with well-known coaches. This is definitely a great achievement

The Rhythmic Gymnastics community hopes that Rhythmic Gymnastics will be recognized and appreciated in the near future as one of the most beautiful Olympic sports, featuring athletes full of grace and talent, and ISRG and Coach Anastasia hope that Orange County will stand out as a great source of that talent in years to come.

If you are interested in exploring Rhythmic Gymnastics for your daughter, or if your organization is interested in having the ISRG athletes perform at your event, visit or email DECEMBER 2014




Great Opportunities Every child should have the opportunity to discover what they can accomplish and build belief in their own potential. Great Opportunities, a non-profit based out of San Juan Capistrano, is providing kids just that. “We offer so many classes and programs, it’s incredible,” says David Groos of Great Opportunities. “We offer free swimming classes, a ‘Beach Awareness Program,” bike rodeos, and so much more.” Founded in 2002, Great Opportunities works with children ages 9 to 18 years old. They provide quality educational and recreational opportunities for the youth of Southern California. Their swim lessons and Beach Awareness Program are both offered at no cost to the participants. “We’re also able to offer young adults fully paid tuition and study materials for a 52 hour Lifeguarding Course at Saddleback College. We employ those who successfully pass the Lifeguarding Course to work as pool lifeguards, assist in swim instruction, and act as junior aides for the Great Opportunities Beach Awareness Program,” ºDavid adds.

If you’re interested in learning about additional Great Opportunities programs, visit them online at DECEMBER 2014




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ertain things in life I am very grateful for. These things include chocolate, wine, soul music and places like the Doheny Clothing Exchange in Capistrano Beach. If you’ve been to a place like this, then I know you’re already giving me a mental “Hallelujah.” But if you haven’t, you are so missing out!


Picture this: racks and racks of men and women’s name brand or designer clothing and accessories, all gently used or sometimes new, at way, way less than the original price. And the beauty of it is I can bring in my own gently used clothing, and trade in for something sexier and better fitting. The owners, mother and daughter team Pamela and Caia take the time to truly inspect each item, so there’s never any mystery stains, rips or smells.

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Because they get new merchandise every day, their store stays fresh and new. Because they get new merchandise every day, their store stays fresh and new. Personally, I love the fact that I can buy jeans here and I don’t have to spend the next few weeks trying to break them in. Plus, I can pick out a funky outfit and know it’s not something everyone is wearing. That fact alone makes this place fabulous. This place is awesome for guys, too. And the fact that they have a variety of sizes and styles for one stop shopping rocks. Now, I’m sorry to have tortured you into reading this when you could be on the road, driving there to shop. So, to reward you, I’ll let you in on a little secret. Pamela and Caia will give you 20% off your entire purchase through the month of August if you mention this article. Don’t forget to follow them on Facebook, they are awesome about updating with pictures, sales and must-have items. Have fun!


Connect with Pamela and Caia by stopping by The Doheny Clothing Exchange at 34276 Doheny Park Road in Capistrano Beach or call (949) 240-4800. Follow Doheny Exchange on Instragram and Facebook. DECEMBER 2014

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The Good News Replenishment of hormones to optimum physiological levels has been shown to alleviate symptoms of perimenopause, menopause and andropause. How do hormones fit into the aging process? Traditionally, we have been told that aging is inevitable and that progressive deterioration cannot be prevented. Fortunately, there is a revolution in science and medicine that now identifies aging as a disease. Mainstream medicine is now focusing on the prevention of the aging process rather than simply treating the symptoms of aging. One of the most important preventive therapies is bio-identical hormone replacement therapy for men and women.

On Perimenopause, Menopause and Andropause by J.A. Makena Marangu, M.D. or some, the years that encompass perimenopause, menopause, and andropause can mark a time of increased confidence, freedom and satisfaction. However, for many these years may be a time that poses challenges, particularly changes in energy levels and overall health. The good news is that there is an increased willingness to discuss these changes and to approach them in a positive and effective way.


Hormones are molecules that are manufactured in the endocrine glands, which include the adrenal glands, testes, ovaries, thyroid, pineal, and pituitary gland. As the body ages, the levels of hormones diminish. Specific hormone receptor sites in the cells tend to change with age and become less sensitive and more resistant to hormone stimulation, resulting in a decrease in cellular function, cellular repair, protein synthesis, and cell reproduction. Collectively, this results in the signs and symptoms of aging and can only be reversed by replacing our hormones to optimum levels. As the levels of hormones decline, so do our mental and physical capabilities. We lose energy, vitality, strength, and health. This deterioration results in osteoporosis, coronary artery disease, muscle loss, sleep disorders, depression, mood disorders, and decreased sociability in both women and men. By restoring these hormones to their appropriate levels, it is now possible to restore youthful zeal and energy, to strengthen our bodies and our minds. We can improve, even reverse many of the signs of aging that we have thought were unavoidable.

Unfortunately many of the hormones What is perimenopause? regularly prescribed are synthetic and Perimenopause is a highly individual experience. When are not identical to those found in the and how it begins and how long it lasts vary widely. human body. While these hormones may Perimenopause, the five to seven years leading up to somewhat resemble our own hormones menopause, is a natural transition in a woman’s life. Most women experi- and may accomplish some of the same tasks, they ence perimenopause between the ages of 45 and 55. are not what the body is used to and needs. The body tries to metabolize these foreign substances What is menopause? and may produce toxic by-products which can 3,500 women enter menopause everyday in the United States. Menopause cause side effects such as bloating, mood swings, is defined as no menstrual cycle for twelve months, but symptoms can water retention, weight gain and depression. begin as long as fifteen years before the cessation of menses. That National Institute of Health reports that in the US, the average woman stops men- The proper replacement of hormones involves restruating between the ages of 50 and 51. plenishing all of the deficient hormones back to optimal, more youthful levels using only bio-idenWhat is andropause? tical hormones. Which hormones to replenish, how Also known as male menopause, andropause is the condition caused by much to replenish and how to adjust the hormones decreasing hormone levels in men. is the art and science of the specialty of bio-idenDECEMBER 2014



tical hormone replacement therapy. Your age-management physician can help you to achieve the quality of life you desire and deserve! How do hormones work to reverse symptoms of perimenopause, menopause and andropause? Hormones interact with each other to regulate the body’s functions. Your age-management physician will prescribe hormones in a perfect balance for your body. This is a case where One Size does not fit all. Your customized hormone program can eliminate the debilitating symptoms of perimenopause, menopause and andropause. Maintaining optimum levels of the following hormones can make a world of difference in your overall well-being and outlook: Estrogen and Progesterone – Estrogen has experienced a bumpy ride over the last four decades. Conclusions of studies such as the Women’s Health Initiative have left women scared and confused. But these studies have focused on the synthetic estrogen whereas bio-identical estrogen mimics exactly the estrogen produced by the body. Estrogen is essential for muscle tone, skin smoothness, hair texture, and sex drive. It may also help deter Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis, and heart disease. Bioidentical progesterone should be regarded as the partner of estrogen. They balance each other and work synergistically to promote optimum female health. Progesterone boosts mood and well-being and helps stimulate bone growth and healthy heart function. DHEA – Studies have shown that this hormone has a beneficial effect on immune response, sex drive, metabolism, and emotional stability. DHEA’s effect on the immune system and its powerful antioxidant capabilities have demonstrated ageresisting potential. DHEA supports cognitive function, helps the body to cope with stress and protects against heart disease through its effects on the body fats and lipids. Testosterone – Although testosterone is the primary male hormone, women also benefit from its supplementation. Its levels decline with age in both men and women. At optimal levels, testosterone increases bone density and formation, enhances energy and sex drive, decreases body fat, increases muscle strength, lowers blood pressure and modulates cholesterol levels. Pregnenolone – Memory loss and lack of mental clarity can be some of the most frustrating aspects of aging. Studies show that pregnenolone may be beneficial against age-related cognitive decline. Melatonin – Melatonin regulates the circadian rhythm as well as the deep stages of sleep. Studies suggest that the immune system is stimulated during these restful periods. In the 1997 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, melatonin was extolled as the valuable antioxidant and a potential anti-cancer agent. Studies show that the melatonin can help to eliminate free radicals, induce youthful sleep patterns and possibly slow the aging process.

Thyroid – The metabolic hormone secreted by the thyroid gland regulates temperature, metabolism and cerebral function. Insufficient levels of thyroid result in fatigue, increased cholesterol levels, and an increased risk of coronary artery disease. Low thyroid can cause fatigue, constipation, dull hair, dry skin, and weak nails. Also, individuals suffering from low thyroid may feel constantly cold, particularly experiencing cold hands and feet. How to get started? Your age management physician will conduct an initial consultation that will include history and physical as well as laboratory work-up. Based on the results of these and other evaluations, your physician will formulate a hormone replacement program tailored just for you and your special needs. Your customized program will include prescriptions as well as recommendations for appropriate dietary supplements, exercise, and nutritional guidelines designed to restore your hormone and quality of aging to optimum levels. Your customized program will also include continued monitoring of hormone levels as well as symptoms.


The program is designed to help you feel, look, and live your best for years to come.

"In my 40s and 50s, I had a very stressful job in law enforcement. I suffered from migraines and my energy had started to wane. This was about a decade ago in an era when many physicians simply 'diagnosed" my symptoms as premenopause and menopause and sent me home with a prescription for synthetic hormones which only made my migraines worse. I met Dr. Marangu in 2002, who was clearly an innovator in the field of natural hormone replacement therapy - she put me on Bio-Identical hormones. It has literally changed my life - I haven't had a migraine in a decade. With Dr. Marangu's help, I lost 43 pounds in 4 months. My overall health has greatly improved, I feel better than I ever have and I'm blessed to be so healthy in my retirement and I have Dr. Marangu to thank for that." Sharon Ruiz, San Clemente "I knew my body was changing and didn’t know how to help myself. I was experiencing depression, catastrophic mood swings, crying for no apparent reason, mega hot flashes, and lack of libido, among many things. After seeing Dr. Marangu's advertisement, I made an appointment. Today, my body and life are back to normal and I have lost 38 lbs. Hallelujah! It is so amazing to experience life at 56 and feel on top of the world every day. Thank you Dr. Marangu so much for your care! - Kathy, Dana Point

For more information on bio-identical hormone therapy, call J.A. Makena Marangu, M.D. at (949) 443-4313. DECEMBER 2014



Marie Shines for the Premiere of Her Life Review Video by Denise Carson


t 102 years old, Marie Lasher dresses for the premiere of her life story in a small movie theater near her Laguna Hills, California home. Shannon Sirovy, Director of Volunteer Services of Hospice Care of the West, accompanies Marie in a wheelchair into the elevator. As they enter the elevator, they see posters of Marie on the wall inviting the community to her movie. Yvette Aiello, the volunteer editor of Marie’s life review video, joins them. “Look Marie, you’re famous,” Shannon says. “Well, Marie says beaming. “I’ll only sign autographs, no checks.”

As they enter the movie theater, Marie receives a red carpet welcome. Friends surround her from the community she has lived in for three decades. As she basks in a wave of embraces and endearments from friends, she shines like a star in the spotlight. Wafts of fresh popcorn fill the theater as the guests sit take their seats. The theater is full.

Her son tells Marie he wants "a copy of everything." Which is the entire motivation behind the lovely life review videos put together by the volunteer services at Hospice Care of the West. A gift given to the hospice patients and their families, each life review interview retraces the footsteps of a person’s life from birth to childhood, young adulthood to falling in love, lessons learned to chosen religious paths, parenthood to grandparenthood, to wisdoms and hopes and dreams to pass on to the next generation. This life review video is then edited with music and pictures to be passed on so the hospice patient like Marie Lasher knows a tangible legacy of memories and wisdom will live on for her children and grandchildren and great grandchildren.

As the lights of the theater dim, Marie shows up on screen. And she watches herself on the silver screen retrace her life’s footsteps, stories and lessons that began in Ohio when she was born. Marie shares her personal history and journey that led to the life review interview video recorded by Shannon just a few weeks before. Marie shared the story of how her family coming to America from Hungry and Austria. Those of her family who stayed behind, she laments were killed in the gas chambers when the Nazis invaded Europe during World War II.

marie shared the story of how her family coming to America from Hungry and Austria. Those of her

Marie's father played pinochle at weekend gatherings that brought the family together in America. She knew all her aunts and uncles. Pinochle brought together not only family but also friends from the neighborhood. The gatherings punctuated her childhood while also setting the course for her adulthood. As it was during one of these games that she On that memorable afternoon shortly after Marie entered hospice care, her bedroom was trans- met and fell in love with the man who formed into what appears to be the dressing room of a movie star. As Shannon conducts the inter- would become her husband in 1944 and view, Marie's son Lewis calls from Denver, Colorado. her son, Lewis, was born in 1945.

family who stayed behind, she laments were killed in the gas chambers when the Nazis invaded Europe during World War II.

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Gracie Barra Jiu Jitsu In the two years since our now 7-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter started the program, they have both thrived in the encouraging, fun atmosphere and in interacting with their fellow students and the instructors. What is particularly nice is that there are several “coaches” on the mat throughout the 50-minute class, so each student receives individualized, personal attention. All of the instructors I’ve witnessed are incredibly patient, supportive and seem to have an affinity for teaching their art to children. “I attribute the success of the business to date to our people,” says Flavio Almeida, executive director, Gracie Barra (GB) Association and professor, GB Dana Point and GB San Clemente. “Gracie Barra has been an amazing magnet, attracting good people. From the staff to the students, every individual has been very elf development. Discipline. Self defense. Character committed to the team and their training, as well as the growth of the school.” development. These are all traits any parent would want to instill in their children and the main reasons Almeida, who has been practicing Jiu-Jitsu his entire life, says Gracie Barra has why my husband and I chose to enroll our children “transformed me and my family in so many ways and we are really motivated to expose as many people in our community to the amazing benefits of the practice in Gracie Barra Jiu Jitsu in Dana Point. – from improved confidence, strength and coordination to personal discipline. Open since December 2009 in the Blue Lantern Plaza (at Our classes are run using curriculums and teaching methods developed by our the corner of PCH and Blue Lantern), the Gracie Barra Jiu- founder Carlos Gracie Jr. and, most importantly, we have our students goals in Jitsu studio specializes in self defense and Brazilian Jiu- mind all the time. Jiu-Jtsu is a tool for each team member to discover his or her own strengths and grow from their weaknesses and we are here to help them.” JItsu for men, women and children of all ages.


Connect with Professor Flavio by calling (949) 388-8886, stop by the studio 34085 Pacific Coast Hwy in Dana Point (in the Blue Lantern Plaza) or visit




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SOUTH COUNTY DINING & ENTERTAINMENT Our tradition at Camino Real Playhouse is to celebrate New Year’s Eve, Broadway Time. There is a great New Year’s Eve dinner from Sundried Tomato, dancing music with Martin Gerschwitz & Gina Kessler, stand-up comedy with Tom Riehl and of course a Champagne toast.

The Door to the New Year by Beverly Blake and Tom Scott mong ancient peoples the first day of the year was seasonal, variously corresponding to the vernal or autumnal equinox, or to the summer or winter solstice. In the Middle Ages it was celebrated among Christians in early spring, usually on Mar. 25. After the adoption of the Gregorian calendar that began in 1582, the day was observed on the first of January.


January is named after the Roman god, Janus, the god of doors because this month is the door to the year. The Roman god Janus represents all beginnings and possesses the ability to see all things past and future. He is usually a two-faced god since he looks to the future and the past. The Romans dedicated the month of January to Janus. Twenty-five hundred years ago, two thousand years before Shakespeare, Western theatre was born in Athens, Greece. Between 600 and 200 BC, the ancient Athenians created a theatre generally featuring Comedy or Tragedy performances. The familiar two masks that are now the symbols for theatre date back to 500 - 300 BC. Their origin was Janus, the two-faced god of doors!

Many traditions have evolved in various cultures and you probably have created your own traditions with your family and friends. The most commonly sung song for English-speakers on New Year's Eve, "Auld Lang Syne" is an old Scottish song that was first published by the poet Robert Burns. It is often remarked that "Auld Lang Syne" is one of the most popular songs that nobody knows the lyrics to. It was bandleader Guy Lombardo, who popularized the song and turned it into a New Year's tradition. Lombardo's version of the song was played every New Year's eve from the 1930s until 1976 at the Waldorf Astoria. The song is such a New Year's tradition now that if we failed to play 'Auld Lang Syne,' at the stroke of midnight some would think the New Year didn’t arrive. Our tradition at Camino Real Playhouse is to celebrate New Year’s Eve, Broadway Time. There is a great New Year’s Eve dinner from Sundried Tomato, dancing music with Martin Gerschwitz & Gina Kessler, stand-up comedy with Tom Riehl and of course a Champagne toast with ‘Auld Lang Syne’ at the stroke of midnight on Broadway (9 pm here!) You can get home early…..or go to another party!

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SOUTH COUNTY DINING & ENTERTAINMENT NA LEO PILIMEHANA, which in Hawaiian means the voices blending together in warmth, is the most popular, award winning and biggest selling female Hawaiian group in the World. soldier steps into no man’s land singing Stille Nacht. Thus begins an extraordinary night of camaraderie, music and peace.

Soka Performing Arts Center Presents: Aliso Viejo Show ‘’Voices of Peace’’ Saturday, December 6 at 7:00 PM The 4th Annual Aliso Viejo Holiday Show and Food Drive Concert proceeds benefit scholarships at Soka University and the Aliso Viejo Community Foundation Scholarship Program. Please bring canned food for donation to South County Outreach! Cantus “All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914” By Peter Rothstein Sunday, December 7 at 7PM The Western Front, Christmas Eve, 1914. Out of the violence of the Great War's trenches comes a silence, then a song as a young German

Na Leo Holiday Concert Friday, December 12 at 8PM NA LEO PILIMEHANA, which in Hawaiian means the voices blending together in warmth, is the most popular, award winning and biggest selling female Hawaiian group in the World. Na Leo consists of three childhood friends, Nalani Choy, Lehua Kalima Heine and Angela Morales. This concert will feature Na Leo performing their contemporary hits and holiday classics. All-American Boys Chorus: Sounds of Christmas Sunday, December 14 at 4 PM Be there when the internationally acclaimed All-American Boys Chorus, under the musical direction of Wesley Martin, takes the stage for a superb production that will thrill music lovers of all ages. Get into the Christmas spirit with the most beloved songs like It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas, Silver Bells, Jingle Bell Rock, and many more. It's the perfect family Yuletide event! Order your tickets early!

Come early for Dinner! Soka Bistro is open for dinner M-F 5:30-7:00 pm, Sat/Sun 5:00-7:00 pm. Only $10.95 for an all-you-can-eat buffet. For Tickets & Further Info Call (949) 480-4278 ir visit





Join us for the Christmas episode of South County Safari as we take you to the Dana Point Harbor for IlluminOcean 40 nights of holiday lights on this festive walking tour in your own backyard. Miss Dana Point Harbor, Kim Tilly, leads us on a tour of all the great happenings in our quaint little marina this holiday season. You'll also get a chance to meet the U.S. Marines in charge of the Orange County Toys For Tots program, the top caroling group in Orange County, Lil Dickens Carolers and our very special guest Santa Claus. Sit down with your family and enjoy the show on Cox Channel 3 every Saturday in December at 11:00 am and 9:30 pm

Watch South County Safari every Saturday at 11 a.m and 9:30 p.m. on Cox Channel 3. DECEMBER 2014



SOUTH COUNTY DINING & ENTERTAINMENT I love the wood-fired pizzas here. They don’t make deep-dish-American-football-sweatpants pizza. No. They serve handmade, thin, crispy, flaky crust pizza.

pizza. No. They serve handmade, thin, crispy, flaky crust pizza. I had "Make Your Own Pizza" with prosciutto and arugula, complete with a soft flurry of mozzarella. You know, the kind of pie you sip wine with, reflecting on the old country while a hot steam of freshness rises poetically around you. Or, as others put it: one heck of a tasty pizza. For heartier appetites, I recommend the Filetto Toscano (USDA Premium choice filet mignon medallions pan roasted and served with a sweet red onion, shallots, Chianti reduction and melted fontina cheese, and favorites like the Rigatoni Casa Brio characterized by grilled chicken breast, caramelized onions, roasted

Brio Tuscany Grill by Ann Laurence


have to admit - I'm pretty particular when it comes to deciding where to go for dinner on date night, out for a family meal or simply stepping out to enjoy a glass of fine wine and live entertainment after work. Lucky for me, I live in Dana Point and am only a stone's throw from a popular eatery that dishes up all this and delicious Italian cuisine to boot: Brio Tuscany Grill. This place isn’t the kind of establishment that has huge, bedazzled lights pointing to it with acrobatic sign holders out front. This restaurant respects itself in a quaint location at 24050 Camino Del Avion in Dana Point. If you didn’t know about it, you might miss it driving by. But after you read this, I guarantee you’ll make it a point to seek it out.

garlic, baby spinach, cremini mushrooms, sweet baby peas and fresh basil topped with fresh buffalo mozzarella.

For starters, the Antipasto Italiano Platter arrives with an array of flavorful favorites - Prosciutto di Parma, artisan salame, fresh buffalo mozzarella, Tuscan olives, grilled artichoke hearts, roasted bell peppers and toasted ciabatta bread. Yum! A seafood aficionado? Try the Mare Platter which is made for sharing: Buttermilk battered calamari fritti, seared Ahi tuna and blue shrimp scampi. I love the wood-fired pizzas here. They don’t make deep-dish-American-football-sweatpants

Brio Tuscany Grill has an incredible selection of fine wines (and a full premium bar), great nightly specials and the kind of attentive-yet-unobtrusive service that makes any meal that much more enjoyable. Visit for their menu and catering options or call (949) 443-1476 for reservations. You won't be disappointed! DECEMBER 2014



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South County Holiday EVENTS GUIDE Holiday Tree Lighting; Laguna Beach. 2014 information is tentative. Join us as we celebrate the season to come. There will be many special activities and an assortment of delectable creations from our renowned chefs available throughout the evening. Enjoy holiday carolers, hot cocoa, children's activities and, of course, our traditional tree lighting, all here on our beautiful oceanfront setting. All ages. Free admission. 4:30pm-6:30pm. Montage Laguna Beach. 30801 South Coast Highway. (949) 715-6608.


Holiday in the Harbor; Dana Point. 2014 information is tentative. The three areas of the Harbor, Dana Wharf Mariners Village and Mariner’s Alley will all host holiday activities geared to families and children. There are many fun activities planned, including photos with Santa, performances by various characters, holiday crafts, and people painting. This year’s Holiday in the Harbor will include additional attractions adding to the fun and excitement. Family friendly game booths for the kids along with Ponies and a Petting Zoo with clean and gentle animals for families to enjoy. So, bring friends and family down to enjoy the Harbor’s Holiday spirit. All ages. Free admission. 10am-2pm. Dana Point Harbor. 34624 Golden Lantern. (949) 923-2255.


Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony; Mission Viejo. Theater in the Round presented by the South Coast Freestyle Dance Training Center along with St. Killian Choir for our 4th annual tree lighting ceremony. Join us as we are entertained with over seventy-five dancers to their performance of A Candyland Christmas. Ring in the holiday with cheer with the St. Killian Choir as they help us light up our holiday tree. Plus, a special appearance by the jolly man in his big red suit! All ages. Free admission. 6pm-8pm. Kaleidoscope. 27741 Crown Valley Parkway. Visit www. for more information.


Annual Boat Parade of Lights; Dana Point. 2014 information is tentative. Boaters from all around Orange County decorate their boats and vie for the awards of Judges Choice, Best Theme, Best Use of Lights, Best Animation, Most Colorful, Most Original, Best Sailboat, Best Powerboat and the Perpetual Trophy for the Yacht Club with the Most Entries, along with many other awards DECEMBER 2014


and cash prizes! You can view the parade free from anywhere in the Harbor, or make reservations at one of our restaurants to view it from a cozy and warm spot. All ages. Free admission. 7:30pm-9:30pm. Dana Point Harbor. 34624 Golden Lantern. (949) 923-2255. Boat Rides with Santa; Dana Point. Come aboard for a twentyminute Harbor cruise with Santa and his helpers. Santa will be hearing those Christmas wishes as you cruise the Harbor. Bring your cameras for pictures with Santa. What a unique and fun way for kids of all ages to visit with Santa, so dress warm. All ages. Free ($5 donation to the El Camino Real Junior Woman’s Club would be appreciated). 10am-2pm. Dana Point Harbor. 34624 Golden Lantern. (949) 923-2255. Holly Jolly Hoopla; San Clemente. 2014 information is tentative. The City of San Clemente and Casa Romantica bring back a day of excitement and jubilee! It’s double the fun in San Clemente with Santa, cookie decorating, hot chocolate, crafts and much more holiday cheer for the whole family to enjoy! Begin your day with a holiday spectacular at the Community Center. Decorate a holiday cookie in Mrs. Claus’ Bakery, visit with Santa (bring your camera), walk through the Candy Cane Factory, snack on popcorn while watching Polar Express, and listen to sounds of holiday cheer. Light the tree with the Mayor at 5:15pm. Enjoy the spirit of the season at Casa Romantica splendidly decorated for the holidays, with Santa, Dickens carolers, hot chocolate and cookies,crafts for kids, holiday entertainment, and holiday exhibitions. Ages 12 years and under. Free admission. 2pm- 7:30pm. San Clemente Community Center. 100 N Calle Seville. (949) 361-8264. Laguna Niguel Holiday Parade; Laguna Niguel. 2014 information is tentative. Come view over 100 exciting entries including marching bands, floats, local youth groups, equestrian units, exotic cars, military members, local heroes and fun attractions! And no hometown holiday parade is complete without a dazzling entrance by Santa Claus! Get there early! This hometown event is a Southern California tradition with more than 3,500 parade participants and an anticipated crowd of more than 10,000 people. Parade watchers are encouraged to bring chairs and take advantage of the free shuttle, available from the Federal Bldg. parking lot off of Dorine/El Lazo. Event will go rain or shine, unless conditions are determines unsafe. All ages. Free admission. 10am-12pm. Laguna Niguel Holiday Parade. Crown Valley Parkway and Nueva Vista. Visit for more information.





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