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Conejo Valley MARCH 2017

ConejoValleyLifestylePubs.com

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Precious Pets K9S FOR VETERANS THE LITTLE ANGELS PROJECT RILEY’S RESCUE ANIMAL ADOPTIONS


WEALTH ADVISORS CHECKUPS ARE GOOD FOR YOUR FINANCIAL HEALTH

CHECKUPS ARE GOOD FOR YOUR FINANCIAL HEALTH

You have an annual physical to make sure you are healthy. What do you do to make sure you remain financially fit?

Once a year, you should have a thorough financial You have an annual to and makeunbiased sure you are checkup. I specialize in physical thoughtful investment guidance designed to keep your finances healthy. What do you do make sure you remain in shape. financially fit? CallOnce todaya for more orato schedulefinancial a year, youinformation should have thorough consultation.

checkup. I specialize in thoughtful and unbiased investment guidance designed to keep your finances in shape.

Call today for more information or to schedule a consultation.

MB&T Advisors Jennifer Strong

Located at Montecito Bank & Trust Wealth Advisor Jennifer CA InsuranceStrong #0F86692 Wealth Advisor CAPaseo Insurance #0F86692 770 Camarillo, Suite 120 Camarillo, CA 93010 Road 4730 Telephone (805) 564-7386 Ventura, CA Office 93003 (805) 564-7386 Office jstrong@mbtadvisors.com jstrong@mbtadvisors.com montecito.bank

Not FDIC Insured

Not Bank Guaranteed

Not Insured by Any Federal Government Agency

Located at Montecito Bank & Trust • montecito.bank

May Lose Value Not a Bank Deposit

Jennifer Strong representative with, and offered through Financial, FINRA/SI Jennifer Strongis aisregistered a registered representative with,securities and securities offered LPL through LPLMember Financial, products offered throughInsurance LPL Financial or its licensed Bank & or Trust MB&T Advisors Member FINRA/SIPC. products offeredaffiliates. throughMontecito LPL Financial itsand licensed affiliates.are not brokers/dealers affiliates of LPLAdvisors Financial. Montecito Bank nor & Trust and MB&T are not registered brokers/dealers nor affiliates of LPL Financial.


“I don’t sell homes... I sell a lifestyle”

PAIGE GORDON CalBRE: 01908944

805.750.2105 paige@thegotwoguy.com 32129 Lindero Cyn., #105, Westlake Village CA 91361

WWW.PAIGEGORDON.COM


A Greater Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce Networking Group Do Business With Local Businesses In Our Conejo Valley Community * FREE Hearing Test & 45 Day Tri al !

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NURSE-MANAGED CARE AT HOME

Joe Engle

Estate Planning Attorney Wills • Trusts • Probate • Conservatorships

Westlake Corporate Plaza 2625 Townsgate Road, Suite 330 • Westlake Village, CA 91362 O: 805.297.8121 • F: 805.306.1865 • joe@englelegal.net

805 233 3800 brightstarcare.com/conejo-valley brightstar care.com/conejo-valley Independently Owned and Oper Operated ated HHA 550002234 & HC O 564700035 HHA HCO

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Find out what a Greater Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce Networking Group can do for you. Call Debbie Soden 805.300.0936

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Join us for the next Women in Financial Transition

Reception and Speaker Panel—Series IV “The Money Myths Women Should Stop Believing!” Discerning fact vs. fiction as it relates to your financial future.

Please join us for an evening of education and empowerment with four dynamic speakers. Enjoy gourmet appetizers and delicious wine in the beautiful Wine Cellar Room at the Westlake Village Inn. For more Information and to register… Online: ManchesterFinancial.com/Women Phone: 805-495-4405 Cost: $25.00*

*Register by March 31st and admission is waived. Thursday—April

POWERED BY PLANNING®

6, 2017

5:30 PM to 7:30 PM Westlake Village Inn The Wine Cellar Room


Lifestyle Letter

The Cat's Meow

O

ur readers may recall last year’s heartfelt tribute to our beloved cat Tuxedo, better known as Tuxie, in the March issue of Conejo Valley Lifestyle. Although  he passed away a year ago in January, his spirit remains in our house…sometimes I see a shadow and think it’s him. But it was time to move on. By April, we were ready to welcome a couple of new companions into our lives.

After watching endless hours of cat programming on Animal Planet, Robin developed an affinity for Birmans, nicknamed “Velcro Cats” for their gentle nature and inclination to rarely leave your side. Unfortunately, legitimate breeders want to be paid $1,000 or more for a kitten and anyway, it would then not be a rescue. Two good reasons to look elsewhere. As luck would have it, during her research on Birmans, Robin stumbled upon a very questionable breeder. In what amounted to an indoor feral Birman colony, we found a 10-month-old male and a 2-year-old female. Malnourished, suffering from gum problems and patchy coats, questionable shot records, not neutered. Never having been handled properly, they were also very skittish. We were ready to leave when I spotted the female across the room and somehow felt a connection. We made an impulse decision and took them home (having paid only what we would normally pay a shelter). There was much work to be done. We felt that the female would not have lived another 6 months. The folks at Veterinary Angels have helped us immeasurably in their transformation to good health. Here we are a year later. Cameo is very smart, very sweet. She has also gained over 2 pounds and is no longer a sorry little ragamuffin. She’s a beauty queen. Cosmo has doubled in size. He is very handsome, a Mama’s boy and a complete goof. Whether you are a cat person or a dog lover, save a life and be rewarded with love and furry companionship.

MARCH 2017 PUBLISHER

Ben Malkin | Ben.Malkin@LifestylePubs.com Robin Chesler | Robin.Chesler@LifestylePubs.com EDITOR

Tracy Marcynzsyn | Tracy.Marcynzsyn@LifestylePubs.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Alicia Doyle, Taylor Hubbell, David Kreinces, Tracy Marcynzsyn, Rocky Mills, Mary Noe, Kim Pagano, Ken Phillips CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Ken Taylor Photography

CORPORATE TEAM | Steven Schowengerdt

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

CHIEF SALES OFFICER

| Matthew Perry

CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER DIRECTOR OF MARKETING ART DIRECTOR EDITORIAL MANAGERS

| Sara Minor

| Nicole Sylvester, Nicolette Martin

OPERATIONS MANAGER AD COORDINATORS

| DeLand Shore | Brad Broockerd

| Janeane Thompson

| Cyndi Harrington, Chelsi Hornbaker, Megan Seymour, Chad Jensen

LAYOUT DESIGNERS

| Cyndi King, Jessica Sharky, Dana Rudolph

DESIGN SPECIALIST

| Ashleigh Thomson

EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT

| Melanie Carlisle

EXECUTIVE ACCOUNTANT APPLICATION ARCHITECT WEB DEVELOPERS

| Randa Makeen

| Michael O’Connell

| Hanna Park, Scott Lavigne

Ben Malkin, Publisher Ben.Malkin@LifestylePubs.com

by Community ™

ConejoValleyLifestylePubs.com JOIN US

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

TALK TO US

P.O. Box 12608 Overland Park, KS 66282-3214 Proverbs 3:5-6 Conejo Valley Lifestyle™ is published monthly by Lifestyle Publications LLC. It is distributed via the US Postal Service to some of Conejo Valley’s most affluent neighborhoods. Articles and advertisements do not necessarily reflect Lifestyle Publications’ opinions. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in any form without written consent. Lifestyle Publications does not assume responsibility for statements made by advertisers or editorial contributors. Information in Conejo Valley Lifestyle™ is gathered from sources considered to be reliable, but the accuracy of all information cannot be guaranteed.


March 2017 Scarlett

30

How her love of animals saves hundreds

30 Unconditional Love

12

Good Times

16

Around Town

20

Animal Kingdom

22

Hot Spot

40

Financial Buzz

42

Giving Back

46

Locally Owned

48 DIY

26 A Little Girl’s Legacy

Departments

52

Lifestyle Calendar

58

Parting Thoughts

Reaping the rewards of animal adoptions

36 A Veteran’s Best Friend

Hogan Family Foundation supports Vets with K9s

42 Angels to the Rescue

Nonprofit’s medical treatment aids local rescues

26

36

Lifestyle Publications Arizona | California | Colorado | Florida | Georgia | Idaho | Illinois | Kansas | Minnesota | Missouri | Montana North Carolina | Ohio | Oklahoma | South Carolina | Tennessee | Texas | Utah

42


Thinking about selling your home? Start the New Year off by calling or texting Rosemary @ 805.479.7653 to discuss the best strategic plan to prepare your home to sell in 2017

Rosemary has set the standard for excellence throughout her career and is truly a legend. Her vision and reputation as a trend-setter in the science of marketing Southern California’s finest estates, established her as the most innovative leader in real estate. Rosemary’s dedication to the Santa Rosa Valley and strong work ethic have earned her a reputation as one of the most trusted and admired real estate professionals. Rosemary’s numerous honors and accolades include recognition in the Wall Street Journal as one of the top selling 250 individual Realtors in the USA. Premier placement in Internet search engines and full color advertisements in local magazines allows Rosemary’s listings to be seen by thousands of prospective buyers each month. Discover what Rosemary’s proven real estate marketing plan with individually tailored service can do for you.

Call or text Rosemary at 805.479.7653, email her at RosemaryAllison@aol.com or find more on-line at callrosemary.com ©2017 Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker® and the Coldwell Banker Logo, Coldwell Banker Previews International® and the Coldwell Banker Previews International Logo, are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Real estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage are independent contractor sales associates and are not employees of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. CalBRE Lic # 00545184.


Private Single Story Tuscan flavored villa

335 Highland Hills Drive | Camarillo, CA

www.335HighlandHills.com Offered at: $1,498,000 Private SINGLE STORY Tuscan flavored villa above the city and beyond the noise, nestled in an exclusive gated community in the heights of Camarillo. This 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath retreat has a serene park like two plus acre lot that includes beautiful trees and fountains that deliver a luxurious compound feel. Detached rec room with stone patio covered veranda. Large pebblestone pool/spa with huge BBQ entertaining area. Fabulous views that extend over the valley to the Santa Monica mountains, the Conejo grade, and out to the ocean. Enter the home through a grand covered entryway flanked by matching fountains. Quality construction and updated to be new throughout. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

805.491.2100

rosemaryallison@aol.com callrosemary.com

RosemaryAllison Estate Director, Coldwell Banker Previews International

©2017 Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker® and the Coldwell Banker Logo, Coldwell Banker Previews International® and the Coldwell Banker Previews International Logo, are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Broker does not guarantee the accuracy of square footage, lot size or other information concerning the condition or features of property provided by seller or obtained from public records or other sources, and the buyer is advised to independently verify the accuracy of that information through personal inspection and with appropriate professionals. CalBRE Lic # 00545184.


Palatial Mediterranean inspired villa

12916 Andalusia | Santa Rosa Valley, CA

www.12916Andalusia.com Reduced to: $2,795,000 Palatial Mediterranean inspired villa with 5 acres. 360 degree views behind private gates of Hidden Meadows in Santa Rosa Valley. European romance is mingled with Californian magic in this two story residence situated as a crown on its own hilltop. Classic architectural elegance complemented by magnificent curving staircase, volume ceilings, state of the art technology and Travertine marble flooring. Resort size backyard, with paths leading up to hilltop koi ponds & tremendous slide. Multiple waterfalls complete the incredible scenery. Stunning lighted tennis court, corral and equestrian facilities, 4 car garage with deep limo bay. Reduced to: $2,795,000.

RosemaryAllison Estate Director, Coldwell Banker Previews International

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

805.491.2100

rosemaryallison@aol.com callrosemary.com

©2017 Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker® and the Coldwell Banker Logo, Coldwell Banker Previews International® and the Coldwell Banker Previews International Logo, are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Broker does not guarantee the accuracy of square footage, lot size or other information concerning the condition or features of property provided by seller or obtained from public records or other sources, and the buyer is advised to independently verify the accuracy of that information through personal inspection and with appropriate professionals. CalBRE Lic # 00545184.


Good Times

Debutantes Honored at 35th Annual Ball

The Conejo Valley Chapter of National Charity League, Inc. recognized 18 debutantes for their philanthropic endeavors and community service. The girls collectively contributed 8,000+ service hours to 23 local philanthropies. The nonprofit organization of mothers and daughters in Grades 7-12 fosters community responsibility through philanthropy, leadership activities and cultural events.  PHOTOGRAPHY BY KEN TAYLOR PHOTOGRAPHY

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


Good Times

Montecito Bank & Trust Awards $1 Million to Local Nonprofits

Montecito Bank & Trust hosted its 14th annual Community Dividends Awards at Four Seasons The Biltmore in Santa Barbara to honor 203 local Santa Barbara and Ventura County nonprofits. Awards totaling $1 million were presented by Chairman Michael Towbes and President and CEO Janet A. Garufis.

Divorce can disrupt your life, don’t let it destroy your financial future.

Get expert advice and guidance before you sign a final settlement.

Wealth Management

We help you: • Build a divorce team you can trust • Organize the important financial information • Set goals and determine the best settlement to maintain your lifestyle • Make tough decisions such as keeping your house or selling it • Create a sound financial strategy for your future and the future of your loved ones

Certified Divorce Financial Analysts®

Contact Kathy Costas or Evan Miller for a complimentary consultation: Kathy@FMBWealth.com | Evan@FMBWealth.com 2659 Townsgate Road, Ste 246, Westlake Village, CA 91361 | www.FMBWealth.com | (805) 446-4494 14

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

Listen to us on the Kim Pagano radio show. www.kimpaganoshow.com


Knowledge...Skill...Efficiency... Pride of Workmanship...Teamwork...Poise Can you ask more than that in hiring the right professionals to handle your Real Estate transaction? You can. How about the latest, most technologically advanced escrow processing platform in existence today? We know escrow!

Getting ready to Open Escrow?

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Around Town

AROUND TOWN

ANIMAL OBSERVATIONS The month of March is full of notable animal-related dates and occasions: National Pet Sitters Week – March 1-7 World Wildlife Day – March 3 Iditarod Race – March 4 kickoff Festival of Owls Week – March 5-11 National Aardvark Week – Second week of March National Animal Poison Prevention Week – March 19-25

science fair, panel presentation by undergraduate students about being prepared to attend college and a tour of the university campus. “This will be a first for many of the children in our programs,” says event organizer Rene Solem. “From bowling to stepping foot onto a university campus, in many cases, these children will be the first in their family to graduate from high school and pursue a college degree! We are proud of them and are so excited to introduce Bowl For Kids’ Sake as a tool to support their educational enrichment.” The March 11 event is one of many BBSVC-sponsored youth programs. BBSVC.org/BOWL

MARDI GRAS HONORS Festivities for Community Conscience’s 25th Anniversary Mardi Gras event on March 4 include recognition of husband and wife Hugh and Keets Cassar for their many years of public service. Kicking off at 5 p.m. with a champagne reception and live music by the Riverboat Dixie Jazz Band, the Mardi Gras event features a

STRIKING IT BIG More than 150 kids from Oxnard, Fillmore and Santa Paula, along with fundraising volunteers, are in for a day of bowling fun and science education, sponsored by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County. The Bowl For Kids' Sake event transports program youth, aka “Littles” to Harley’s Camarillo Bowl for breakfast, a youth motivational speaker presentation and bowling, complete with prizes and giveaways.

silent auction, a Mystery Wine auction and a live auction sure to thrill. Dinner is followed by dancing to The Hodads’ music. Black tie or costume optional. For ticket information, call 805.494.3543 or visit CommunityConscience.org.

CELEBRATE NATIONAL PANCAKE DAY IHOP restaurants nationwide offer guests a free short stack of buttermilk pancakes in celebration of National Pancake Day, Tuesday,

After their bowling session, the Littles head to California State

March 7, from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. In return, IHOP asks guests to consider

University, Channel Islands for a S.T.E.A.M. program featuring a

donating what they would have paid for the pancakes or more to CONTINUED >

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


WHAT DOES

WELLNESS

MEAN TO YOU?

At the My Health Studio Lifestyle Enrichment Network we call “wellness” that feel-good, lookgood feeling. It’s a state of being that is physical, spiritual and psychological…yet uniquely different for each of us. It may be the sound of laughter, the peace of calming conversation or the courage to navigate your own path. Since the inception of MHS, it has been our passion to provide integrative services to help our clients improve their overall health. The wait is over – we have just what you have been searching for! We are excited to have practitioners who are among the best in their respective industries. We all share the same philosophy: OUR CLIENTS COME FIRST!

My Health Studio

Esta McIntyre, National Academy of Sports Medicine MyHealthStudio.com | 818-889-3737

Esta is passionate about helping clients to find their distinct and sustainable fitness blueprint. She offers Fitness Training, Group Classes, Corrective Movement, Weight Loss and General Population Nutrition for individuals and groups.

The Hidden Gem

Clinical Skin Care Kathryn Bruno, Licensed Esthetician TheHiddenGem.info | 818-879-1250

With more than 35 years of domestic and international experience, Kathryn’s main goal is to provide the highest level of personalized, state-of-the-art products and services for the most discerning clients.

JB Medical Aesthetics

JoAnn Bishop, NP Aesthetic Nurse Practitioner JoAnnB@JBMedicalAesthetics.com | 805-630-9571

Skilled in Cosmetic Injectables including Botox, Dysport, Juvederm, Voluma, Restylane (Lyft/Silk) & Radiesse, etc. Vitamin B12 Injections, Lash Serums, and Medical Grade skin care products are available.

Heather Colligan

M.A., LMFT, CPLC Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist PersonalGrowthInYourHands.net | 805-368-9941

As a licensed therapist for nearly 15 years Heather uses various modalities including traditional psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, brain spotting and distress tolerance strategies. Heather is also a Certified Life Coach.

Alicia Trocker

MS RDN, IFNCP Dietitian Nutritionist Alicia@AliciaTrocker.com | 818-970-1990

Alicia empowers clients to find optimal health. She is a Dietitian/ Nutritionist, Integrative & Functional Nutrition Certified Practitioner and speaker. She incorporates personalized nutrition, mindfulness and health coaching in her practice.

My Health Studio

Scott McIntyre, EMT, CPR/First-Aid Instructor MyHealthStudio.com | 818-889-3737

Scott has been involved with emergency first-response training/ preparation since 1995. He offers CPR, First-Aid and AED education and certification as well as disaster preparation instruction. He makes a serious topic fun and memorable!

KayB Therapeutic Massage Kay Bahari KayBTherapeuticMassage.com 818-621-4836

Kay Bahari has been a licensed Massage Therapist since 2000. Kay offers many massage modalities, including Deep Tissue, Pregnancy, Acupressure and much more.

Lash Artists/Waxing/Spray Tan Lisa Ebuen/Sherryl Upton, Estheticians Lisa.Ebuen@icloud.com | 818-851-8645 Sherryl.Upton@gmail.com | 805-843-0600

Professional lash artists at competitive pricing. Each lash application is a work of art. They will create that special look for you from classic conservative, glamorous to diva dramatic! They also specialize in waxing and sunless tanning.

Nazli Saliminejad

M.A., LMFT Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Nazlimft@gmail.com | 818-388-3102

With a background in neuropsychiatric research at UCLA, Nazli uses mindfulness-based psychotherapy to help her clients create long-lasting transformations, particularly in the areas of depression, anxiety & childhood trauma.

Christen Berman

Financial Specialist ChristenBerman@FinancialGuide.com 818-681-7731

Christen uses proven wealth strategies to help you create more income at less risk for a happy and successful retirement. Holistic planning to help you achieve the greatest wealth…peace of mind.

CUSTOMIZED PROGRAMS TO HELP YOU THRIVE. ALL UNDER ONE ROOF! L I N D E R O O A K S S H O P P I N G C E N T E R I 3 1 1 3 9 V IA COL INAS, # 30 3 I W E S T L A K E V I L L A G E


Around Town

(CON TI N UED)

the Children's Miracle Network and other designated local charities. IHOP has raised nearly $24 million for charity through this event since 2006! IHOPPancakeDay.com

PET-TINI FUNDRAISER IN OXNARD Keeping pets and loved ones together until the end is the mission of The Assisted Home Health & Hospice Foundation’s Hands to Cuddle, Paws to Love program. The organization’s Pet-Tini Fundraiser on March 8 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. treats guests to a comedy show, silent auction, appetizers and more, with all proceeds benefiting the foundation’s mission. The event takes place at Oxnard Levity Live, 591 Collection Blvd, in Oxnard. For more information and tickets, visit Assisted1.com/events/PetTini/ or call 805.379.3656.

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


Lose 3" to 23" Inches in 3 weeks... Naturally.

Contour Light Body Sculpting as seen in Conejo Valley Lifestyle

To learn more, call 818.852.7352 or visit WerstlakeBodyContouring.com. Westlake Body Contouring is located in the Mediterranea 1 Building, 30423 Canwood Street, Suite #205, in Agoura Hills.


h t l a e H r o f g Groomin

Animal Kingdom

IT' S PAWFECT! PAMPERS PETS

ARTICLE AND PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED

G

rooming is essential to your pet’s health, as it prevents matting and discomfort and keeps the skin, coat, nails and ears healthy. Regular baths prevent pollen buildup, a common allergy source, and help avoid skin problems like parasites, ticks, fleas and rashes. In many cases, dogs speak to their owner through their groomers, who often see pets more than veterinarians and may notice changes such as body lumps. 20

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


Jonelle Shmoldas and her team at It’s Pawfect! in Agoura Hills understand the important link between health and regular grooming. The official groomer for the Emmy Award-winning show “Lucky Dog,” Jonelle also finds time to care for dogs in need. For the past 20 years, Jonelle and her staff have been grooming dogs at the Agoura Animal Shelter, providing services free of charge for those that don’t have somebody to pay their bill. She notes that too many dogs end up at the shelter because people often don’t realize the responsibility of owning a pet. “Getting a puppy that looks cute requires two to six weeks of potty training, which is no different than having a baby in a diaper,” says Jonelle. “Even bringing home a more mature pet requires 15-20 minutes twice a day of training, as it is very important that pets learn the boundaries of your home, and the connections made between you and your pet during this time are huge,” she adds. She stresses the importance of simply spending time with your pet to create a forever relationship and keep untrained dogs from ending up in the shelter due to irresponsible people.

IN GOOD HANDS

Drawing from her years of experience working with pets, Jonelle creates a calm environment so pets feel safe when they come for their grooming appointments. “Dogs feed off our energy,” she explains. “You may notice that your pets try and be closer to you and comfort you when you are sad. When you are angry. they stay a little bit further away and watch you more closely, waiting for the negative energy to change. Having happy energy lets the dog feel they are walking into a fun environment,” adds Jonelle. In addition to creating an inviting atmosphere for pets, Jonelle safeguards their health by using Mauro Natural Care products, made with the highest grade of natural essential oils, extracts and plant botanicals. Free from dyes, sulfates, parabens and animal byproducts, the products contain essential hemp and argan oils to nourish and support a thicker, healthier, softer beautiful coat. “During different times of the year when you experience dryer skin, our pets do too, so we make sure to add a little bit of coconut oil to our shampoos for extra moisture,” says Jonelle. With decades of experience and a genuine love of pets, Jonelle finds great joy in keeping area animals in top shape. “We feel very blessed to be working in this community for about 20 years. We look forward to many more,” she says. To make an appointment to pamper and groom your pet, contact It’s Pawfect! at 818.991.3310 or visit ItsPawfect.com. It’s Pawfect! is located at 31143 Via Colinas #501 in Westlake Village.

March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

21


Hot Spot

22

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


North Ranch Country Club

ARTICLE TAYLOR HUBBELL | PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED

Promotes Family Fun L

ocated in the hills of beautiful Westlake Village, North Ranch Country Club has a rich tradition of active and knowledgeable golfers, an energetic tennis membership and an incredibly warm and welcoming dining and social culture, offering year-round events fit for adults and families alike. TEE UP

North Ranch offers 27 challenging holes of Ted Robinson signature-designed championship golf on perfectly manicured greens. Our pristine facilities provide the ability to continue improving your golf game. We offer over 7 acres of comprehensive practice facilities, including a fully stocked driving range with Titleist range balls, a chipping/pitching area and a practice bunker in addition to our 6,987-squarefoot putting green. The staff of PGA and LPGA instructors CONTINUED >

March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

23


Hot Spot

LOVE ASK

(CON TI N UED)

COURAGE

CREATING NEW MEMORIES AT

offer one-on-one, group and junior instruction to men, women and children of all skills. In addition to the wonderful facets of our golf operation, North Ranch has embarked on water conservation efforts by converting 45 acres of land into naturalization areas added to the three separate well projects that have solidified our water supply for decades to come. LOVE IT

We are dedicated to helping our residents live as independently as possible, with a host of activities designed to encourage interaction and participation through appropriate programming and engagement by our highly trained and dedicated staff.

Our 12 all-weather professionally lit tennis courts are open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. We have a team of world-class tennis professionals that lead our members through multiple complementary weekly drills and offer individual and group lessons to improve your skills. North Ranch members participate in USTA team activities, singles and doubles leagues year-round, a robust Junior Program and a full calendar of fun and engaging events. WINE & DINE

www.Meadowbrook-Agourahills.com

818-514-5041

5217 Chesebro Road • Agoura Hills, CA 91301 Lic# 197608497

The facet of North Ranch that truly sets us apart from any other club is our dining experience and member events. From a quick bite after your round to an elegant evening out with your spouse, our Food and Beverage department serves up a variety of five-star menus with a smile. Our robust year-round social calendar offers unparalleled events that appeal to the entire family. Whether your desire is to quench your palate at one of our wine tastings or dinners, experience Chef Karl Holst’s philosophy of farm-to-table fresh foods or engage with other families from your community at one of our incredible holiday parties, we have the event for you! Being part of the North Ranch family extends well beyond a membership at a private country club. The friendship, camaraderie and memories made at North Ranch reach higher capacities than a regular membership. Our staff thrives on providing the ultimate membership experience to our members and their guests on every visit to the club. The club’s membership process includes a 30-60 day waiting period finalized by approval from the Board of Directors. We are always looking for wonderful families in our community to welcome to the North Ranch Family. To learn more or to schedule a tour of our wonderful club and facilities, contact Director of Membership and Marketing Taylor Hubbell at 805.413.1241.

24

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


Casual Fine Dining. You’re Always Welcome.

HAPPY HOUR

$5 Beers & Wines (5:30-7:00 Tues-Fri & Sun) Full Bar Coming March 2017 • NO CORKAGE TUESDAY • SUNDAY BRUNCH (10am-2:30pm) • GLUTEN FREE & Allergy Friendly 30990 Russell Ranch Rd, Unit C, Westlake Village, California (805) 405-5054 • ArohaRestaurant.com RESERVATIONS RECOMMENDED

ABOUT New Zealand Cuisine

Back in New Zealand, whether surrounded by the backdrop of the Auckland harbour or the rolling hills of green grass and the smell of feijoa trees, locals are accustomed to fresh and organic meals at home and at the local restaurants. In one of Auckland City’s top restaurants, dining out is not just another outing but a one-of-a-kind experience complete with top quality ingredients, beautifully plated dishes, and most importantly, an environment designed for the laid back Kiwi lifestyle. Many restaurants flaunt their trustworthy kitchens with open passes, allowing the customers to view the chefs from their seats. While a typical United States kitchen relies on pepper and strong seasonings, the Kiwi chef creatively designs dishes to showcase the best combination of flavors, without masking the natural flavors of the food. Aroha, New Zealand Cuisine was founded in 2014 by Award Winning Kiwi Chef Gwithyen Thomas (at age 26) and his wife, Justine (at age 23). Meaning love and compassion in Maori, Aroha is dedicated in loving memory to Gwithyen’s mother, Athena, and Justine’s grandfather, Harold.

Quality Matters

Chef Thomas has created a menu designed to represent the mouthwatering flavors of New Zealand with only the highest quality ingredients. Our menu features hand-grown and predominantly organic produce (our passion fruit and feijoa are grown on our back patio!), free-range and grass-fed organic meats primarily from New Zealand, and fresh New Zealand seafood that’s flown in less than 48 hours out of the water. Dishes are seasoned with native New Zealand plants including horopito and kawakawa. Chef Thomas and his team take pride in creating house-made dishes. Ice creams, ricotta cheese, chutneys, cured and smoked meats and seafood, are all made in house.


NONPROFIT RESCUES

of Animals FO R T H E LOV E O F RILE Y ARTICLE ALICIA DOYLE | PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED

26

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


W

ith her dream to become the first female president, Riley Rolph often professed that her first order of business was to prevent any shelter animal from euthanasia. “She wholeheartedly believed in this and told me often,” recalled Riley’s mom, Julie Taft, of Thousand Oaks. So when Riley passed away in 2009 as a result of an ongoing battle with a congenital heart condition, her mother decided to carry on Riley’s wish. One year later, she established the Riley Rolph Animal Rescue Foundation, a nonprofit that places animals in foster care until they can find a forever home. “After Riley passed, my husband and I, plus many supportive friends, wanted to honor Riley in a way inspired by her— something she would be proud and excited to be a part of,” Taft said. “And honestly, I was a stay-at-home mom and my world had been crushed so I needed to figure out what to do with my life. Fast forward six years later and here we are.” At Riley’s Rescue, most of the animals they have homed were pulled from shelters, while some have been surrendered by their owners. The rescue has also helped senior animals whose owners have passed away. “Any animals that are in Riley’s Rescue care are kept with a foster until placed with a forever home,” Taft explained. “If the animals have been pulled from a shelter or owner surrendered, they are all checked by a veterinarian to make sure all vaccines are

current, they are spayed or neutered and their general health is good.” Since the rescue was launched in 2010, they have found forever homes for at least 700 animals. “We have helped other rescues by paying vet bills and providing supplies,” said Taft. “Riley’s Rescue has pulled hundreds from shelters and placed them in loving homes.” The Thousand Oaks home of Dawn Bloom was among them. “My daughter, Summer Bloom, knew Riley through her best friend Courtney Chelebian from elementary school,” Bloom said. Summer had wanted a puppy for a long time. “So when we decided the time was right, we wanted to support a foundation we knew that was in it for the better of the animals and truly reaching out to help animals in need,” Bloom said. “This foundation obtains animals from high-kill shelters and animals in danger of death or worse.” It is very important that people like Taft, and the Riley Rolph Animal Rescue Foundation, stand up and speak for the animals that can't speak for themselves, Bloom added. “It's so comforting to know that the animals lucky enough to find their way to Riley Rolph Animal Rescue Foundation are well cared for and offered a free vet visit to comfort new adoptees,” Bloom said. “And each new family is properly interviewed to make sure it is the best match up for both the famCONTINUED > ily and the animal.” March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

27


NONPROFIT RESCUES HUNDREDS OF ANIMALS FOR THE LOVE OF RILEY (CON TI N UED)

Today, the nonprofit’s main focus is providing free mobile spay and neuter clinics in low-income areas. Riley’s Rescue is currently working with the Camarillo Animal Shelter to target the highest intake neighborhoods by providing mobile clinics every month. “Prevention and education is the best way to help stop the overpopulation of unwanted and abused animals that end up in shelters,” Taft said. To that end, the future of the nonprofit includes providing as many free mobile spay and neuter clinics monthly as possible for low-income areas, plus education. “We will be working with other resources that help the homeless so we can provide services for their animals as well,” Taft said.  “And of course, we will always help place loving animals in forever homes.” This huge task would not be possible without the team of volunteers who are the lifeblood of the operation.

Riley's Rescue first mobile clinic

L-R: Peggy Simon and Julie Taft with dogs pulled from a high-kill shelter

Riley Rolph

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

Peggy Simon, of Newbury Park, started volunteering at Riley’s Rescue more than five years ago. “I met Julie and learned about Riley's Rescue while I was a volunteer at another rescue that Riley's Rescue was helping to support,” Simon recalled. While there are many animal rescues doing great things, “I chose Riley's Rescue because after meeting and getting to know Julie and seeing how much she cared about not only the animals, but about people, I knew I wanted to help in any way that I could,” Simon said. She volunteers at least a few hours a week and donates more time if a fundraiser or adoption event is underway. “I am there for road trips to Bakersfield with Julie to bring supplies to the small outof-the way shelters and to bring back dogs that have no chance of being adopted where they are,” Simon said.

She has also fostered all the kittens for Riley's Rescue. “I think in the last three years I have fostered between 50 and 60 kittens,” Simon said. “We have successfully placed all of them in loving fur-ever homes.” Above all, “we all love and care about the dogs and cats that are rescued,” Simon added. “Riley's Rescue was started to honor the memory of a wonderful young girl, Riley, because of her love for animals,” she said. “I think she would be very proud of what her parents, Julie and Eric, have done to better the lives of so many dogs and cats. I am very proud to call Julie and Eric my friends, and be a small part of this wonderful organization.” The Riley Rolph Animal Rescue Foundation is headquartered in Thousand Oaks. For more information, visit RileysRescue.org.


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Adopted Pets

FIND FOREVER HOMES

IN OUR Hearts

ARTICLE MARY NOE

C

onejo Valley residents love their pets, and rescue animals seem to hold a special place in their owners’ hearts. The Agoura Animal Care Center, run by the County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control, has contributed many of these treasured pets to our community. According to Denise Rosen, manager of the Agoura animal shelter, more than 1,000 animals were adopted from the Agoura center last year. This may seem like a lot but, Rosen says, “We are the smallest L.A. County Animal Care Facility and we take in the least amount of animals compared to our other county shelters.” Although the Agoura shelter takes in “mostly dogs and cats,” says Rosen, “We also care for stray and unwanted horses, rabbits, goats, pigs, ducks, chickens, turtles, tortoises, lizards, snakes, parrots and other birds,” and all of the animals are eligible for adoption. ADOPT

Chop (aka "El Chopo")

Adopting from the Agoura shelter is an easy and affordable process. Available animals are posted on the county’s website (AnimalCare. LACounty.gov), and can be searched by shelter, breed, age and size. According to the county site, “If you see an animal on the website that you are interested in adopting… visit the animal care center in person to view the animal. Since animals have unique and individual personalities, this helps ensure the best possible match between you and your new pet.” CONTINUED >

30

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


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ADOPTED PETS FIND FOREVER HOMES IN OUR HEARTS (CON TI N UED)

“People decide on the pet they want after visiting the Animal Care Center,” says Rosen. “We have play yards for the dogs where people looking to adopt a dog can meet and spend time interacting with the animal before they adopt.” Adoption fees vary, “depending on how long we have had the animal and if we have performed spay or neuter surgery,” says Rosen. For more details on the adoption process, please visit AnimalCare.LACounty.gov. With their unique and sometimes quirky personalities, our pets often become the stars of the family—obsessed over, pampered and treated like royalty. Conejo Valley Lifestyle caught up with some of the most precocious pets in the area to see what they’ve been up to since their adoption…

manage to sneak out and we would have to catch her and put her back. After five or six attempts at this, we realized that she was the one.” Scarlett took time out from updating her Instagram account (@meetscarlett) to comment on her life post-adoption: Named after Scarlett O'Hara from Gone With the Wind, the fetching feline says, “I have a sassy purrsonality, just like she does.” She adds, “I enjoy ruling the household. Everybody here is well aware of my reign as Queen.” Favorite Food: “Caviar, sourced from wild king salmon caught off the coast of Alaska.” Favorite Band: “The Pussycat Dolls” Hobby: “Sleeping on fresh, clean laundry.” Favorite TV Show: “‘Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan’ because I like to see those dogs get schooled!”

SCARLETT

MOLLY

Scarlett is a 2-year-old gray striped tabby who was adopted as a kitten by Westlake Village residents Tracy Brister, Leslie Thompson and daughter Michaela.  “The Agoura shelter is just down the street from us, and we'd heard good things about it-so when we were ready for a new furry friend, we thought we'd give it a try,” recalls Leslie. “We are so glad we did!” “Scarlett was in a cage with a large litter of kittens at the shelter. Every time we opened up the cage to look at a particular kitten, she would

When they adopted her from the Agoura shelter, the Loper clan didn't realize what a sweet addition Molly would be to their family. At the shelter, the four Loper children, ages 8-14, “immediately fell in love with” the Dachshund/Labrador mix, and “we stayed an hour while the kids played ball with her,” says mom, Jennifer. Adopting a dog that would be gentle with children was important to their family, especially for their 10-year-old son John, who has Down syndrome. 

32

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

“Molly is super patient with John when he grabs her and hugs her,” says Loper. "He always tells her he loves her!” Molly took a break during her favorite game of catch to share about life with the Lopers: How I Got My Name: “The kids named me Molly because I look so Irish!” Hobby: “Playing ball—any time, any day!” Favorite Team: “Notre Dame—GO IRISH!” Relationship Status: “Single and loving it!” Favorite Food: “Avocado” Favorite Family Member: “John, because he lets me kiss his face and sometimes he kisses me back!” LILY

Kim Ferry and her two sons adopted Lily, an orange tabby cat “who acts and thinks like a dog,” from the Agoura shelter in 2011, and she is “the best adopted friend ever!” says Ferry. “She meows when we get home and loves to play jokes on us.” Named after a character in the Harry Potter series, Lily Potter is also known as “A Menace to Society” and “Furr-ocious Beast.” We caught up with Lily as she was relaxing to some music by Cat Stevens. What I Love About My Family and Home: “I pretty much run the joint. These humans are really trainable and they do my bidding. I meow-they feed me. I sit close-they pet me. I get cold-they snuggle. It’s a good partnership.”


Favorite Snack: “When the family is eating breakfast, if they look away or leave their seat, I like to lick their eggs. Yum!” Favorite Hobby: “'Tail Torture,' where I sit near or on one of the boys and gently slap my adorable tail on their face-humans love that! I also like to run as fast as I can from one random empty room to another for no good reason.”  Favorite Team: "Detroit Lions"  Favorite Movies/TV Shows: "The Pink Panther series, 'Nine Lives,' 'The Secret Life of Pets' and 'Cats & Dogs.'" How I Help the Family: “I’m a great nurse when the boys are sick. I’m studying to be a purr-a-medic.”  If you are thinking about adding a pet to your household, consider adopting a rescue. While the Agoura shelter is an excellent option for pet adoption, there are several additional rescue organizations also at work in our community, including L.I.F.E. and Shelter Hope Pet Shop. Says Agoura shelter’s Rosen, “In addition to our Animal Care Centers, I would recommend any rescue that pulls animals from shelters to help save a life and give them an opportunity at finding their forever home.”

ANIMAL RESCUES S carle

tt & L

LA County—Agoura Animal Care Center AnimalCare.LACounty.Gov 29525 Agoura Rd.

Agoura, CA 91301                                                           818.991.0071 Hours: Monday-Thursday: 12 p.m.-7 p.m. Friday-Sunday: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.   Shelter Hope Pet Shop, Thousand Oaks ShelterHopePetShop.org olly John & M

Thousand Oaks, CA 91360 Hours: Wednesday-Saturday: 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. LIFE Animal Rescue-Agoura LifeAnimalRescue.Org 818.707.2007 for dogs 818.707.6186 for cats

adopted two dogs from the Agoura shelter. The

Join LIFE for pet adoptions

latest, a surprise birthday present for her son, is cubes and lounge by the fire.

193 N. Moorpark Rd. East, Suite F 805.379.3538

Full disclosure: Over the years, this writer has

a dynamo named Chop. He likes to snack on ice

eslie

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P ot

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Saturday: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. PetSmart 5766 Lindero Canyon Road Westlake Village March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

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The unnamed veteran served in Iraq and had not left his house for five years due to severe PTSD. The first day he had his service dog, he went for a walk with his new friend, bringing the veteran an instant sense of comfort and security. Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

36

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


Soar for Wounded Warriors ARTICLE KEN PHILLIPS | PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED

E

very year, some 40,000 critically ill American men, women and children seriously in need of medical treatment and diagnosis go untreated simply because they cannot afford the airfare to facilities and doctors who may be able to help them. Since 1999, the Hogan Angel Flight program in Newbury Park has served as a safety net for some of these financially distressed individuals when other resources are not available. The Hogan Family Foundation’s Hogan Angel Flight program works with Air Charity Network and Mercy Medical Angels to help needy patients throughout the country. Much of this assistance is in the form of purchasing commercial airline tickets, which often cost more when purchased at the last minute, as is often the case when transporting people in need of emergency surgery and urgent care. Such expenses cost the Hogan Angel Flight program alone about $250,000 annually.  While Mercy Medical has received some airline support in the past, resources are dwindling, including a recent setback of a major airline sponsor pulling a million dollars a year in free seats from Mercy Medical. Much of the carrier’s support funded a Mercy Medical program called Angel Canines for Wounded Warriors, which provides transportation for disabled veterans to receive service dogs that help them with their everyday needs. Begun in 2009, over 1,500 missions have been flown to connect veterans with their new canines. 

“Mercy Medical is the only patient transport charity responding to this unique need for veterans often suffering from PTSD, traumatic brain injuries, loss of mobility and other conditions caused during military service. When the airline dropped its sponsorship, we felt we needed to step up and help fill the void,” says Christine Hogan, executive vice president of the Hogan Family Foundation. Sadly, the demand is much higher than the availability of dogs, which are specially trained to suit exacting needs of the veterans they will serve. The process can take several airline trips that must be funded to link the former soldier with his or her new partner. The first two veterans aided through Hogan Angel Flight were Kayne Shum and Wayne Birmingham. Both had special needs that could be attended to by highly trained dogs. INJURED MARINE APPRECIATES CANINE’S ACTS OF SERVICE

Thirty-four-year-old Kayne, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, shattered his back in a skydiving accident in December 2012. Surgeries and rehab brought him back, but left him confined to a wheelchair. He needed another set of legs. That aid came in the form of his new best friend Nikki, a yellow lab provided by NEADS (National Education for Assistance Dog CONTINUED >

HOGAN FAMILY FOUNDATION ANIMAL RESCUE PROGRAMS

training for horses that have been abandoned

Lifeline 4 Paws Dog Rescue Support

n addition to its involvement with the Angel

and abused. In turn, children and adults are

program supports over 100 outside rescue

I

Canines for Wounded Warriors, the Hogan

given the opportunity to learn about horses—

organizations that need financial aid to care

Family Foundation operates several animal

including their care, feeding and riding—which

for canines with serious medical conditions.

rescue and medical support programs to

are positive experiences to renew a sense of

Some 2,000 dogs have been saved due to

benefit our community.

pride, self-esteem and hope.    

funding made available through this program

Rancho St. Francis – Equestrian Education

Home Front Riding Program is an eques-

and many of these dogs have been placed in

is the cornerstone of activities surrounding the

trian education program designed to instruct

homes with caring guardians. Lifeline 4 Paws

many programs operating at the Hogan Family

children of deployed military personnel on

also funds spay and neuter clinics to help con-

Foundation’s two equine facilities. Rancho St.

the training, caring and riding of horses at the

trol canine population growth.

Francis provides shelter, medical attention and

Rancho St. Francis facilities. March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

37


ANGEL CANINES SOAR FOR WOUNDED WARRIORS (CON TI N UED)

Services), which serves the deaf and disabled and has a special program for veterans. Kayne spent two weeks training with Nikki on the NEADS campus in Princeton, Massachusetts, and, now, back home in Kansas, Nikki retrieves items Kanye drops, gets things from the fridge, opens and closes doors and performs many other helpful tasks. GUIDE DOG KEEPS VETERAN ON SOLID GROUND

Vietnam veteran Wayne Birmingham, who has lost his sight, has a spring in his step now, thanks to his new buddy Maverick, a 3-year-old yellow Labrador and a gift from Freedom Guide Dogs for the Blind. The New York-based charity is one of only two charities that will train a blind person where he or she lives; a service essential to someone like Wayne. Hogan Foundation, again in partnership with Angel Canines for Wounded Warriors, provided flights for trainer Eric Loori and Maverick to and from Bardwell, Kentucky. Ms. Hogan noted, “Both men have regained some of their independence lost with their injuries while serving our country. We salute them and thank them for their sacrifices. The program has proved to literally save the lives of American veterans, but there is so much more to be done.” Steve Craven, a 20-year Mercy Medical Angel Flight volunteer, who coordinates the canine flights, knows the life-changing opportunities offered by the program. “Our disabled veterans need a great deal of support and we desperately need to expand the Angel Canines for Wounded Warriors program,” says Craven. “We are so blessed by the Hogan family and hope others will join in this important mission to benefit our brave military personnel.” NATIONAL K9 VETERANS DAY

During World War I, European countries used dogs in the military as sentries, message carriers, scouts and for other duties. Taking note of their canine successes, the United States started a program called Dogs for Defense, which was initiated by private citizen Alene Erlanger, along with the American Kennel Club and many dog breeders. Together, the group trained the dogs for military use; March 13, 1942 marks the official launch of the U.S. Army K9 Corps and, in November of that year, the first Dogs for Defense assignments saw their canines shipped off to North Africa, where they proved their value and their valor. As the war progressed, Mrs. Erlanger and her supporters couldn’t keep up with the growing demand, so the Remount Branch, Service Installations Divisions took over the training and this country’s War Dog Program was launched. Formerly, Remount Branch was charged with procuring horses and mules for the military. Over the years, specially trained K9s have maintained important roles in the military, law enforcement, rescue and other programs, such as Angel Canines for Wounded Warriors. National K9 Veterans Day is now celebrated annually on March 13. The acknowledgement was the brainchild of Joseph White, a retired military dog trainer. Joe has since passed on, but today, his mission to keep the National K9 Veterans Day program alive is carried on by TheDogPlace, which notes these four-legged heroes “protect our military, guard our borders, and heal our wounded veterans.” For more information on current programs operated by the Hogan Family Foundation, visit HoganFoundation.org. 38

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

Wayne Birmingham lost his sight in Vietnam and Maverick now serves as his eyes. Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

Sarah and Darby—Darby helps Sarah, a veteran suffering from PTSD, depression, extreme fear of the outside world and devastating flashbacks, overcome her fears. Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

Kayne Shum shattered his back skydiving and can no longer walk. His service dog Nikki handles a number of activities to make Kayne’s life easier. Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

Katrina with Drake—As a result of traumatic experiences while serving as a medic in Iraq, Katrina was diagnosed with PTSD. “I was very lost and did not see the light at the end of the tunnel till I met him. He saved my life,” she says. Photo Courtesy of Mercy Medical Angels

“Our disabled veterans need a great deal of support and we desperately need to expand the Angel Canines for Wounded Warriors program.”

Christine Hogan, executive vice president of the Hogan Family Foundation, also heads up Lifeline 4 Paws Dog Rescue Support, which has saved over 2,000 dogs. Photo Courtesy of Paula Hsien


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Financial Buzz

F

rom March through June, this column will explore each of these steps for successful investing in detail. Do you update your smartphone more often than your portfolio? If so, consider the following steps: 1. Investable Benchmarks 2. Leverage 3. Risk Control 4. Leading Growth Stocks

INVESTABLE BENCHMARKS

Exchange-traded fund (ETF) indexing is widely considered to be the best way to invest. Asset class ETFs are often preferred for their strong relative performance, broad diversification, tax efficiency, ultra-low expenses and intraday liquidity. In fact, Warren Buffett and Yale CIO, David Swensen, both disclosed their ETF portfolio prescriptions for investors. At InvestableBenchmarks.com, we report the performance for their portfolios and for our income and growth versions. BUFFETT & SWENSEN

While Buffett and Swensen recommend growth portfolios, many investors are unable to accept the associated volatility. Portfolios with 70% or more allocated to risk assets (stocks and real estate) are very hard to handle at times. In the 2008 stock market crash, the Buffett and Swensen ETF portfolios fell by -32% and -26%, respectively. INCOME & GROWTH

Given the recent equity and housing market crashes, investors increasingly prefer income and growth portfolios, with 50% allocated to bonds. The best bond ETF has often been long-term Treasuries (TLT) because of its superior liquidity, security and non-correlation to stocks during extreme market volatility. 40

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

4

Steps to

Investment Success

ARTICLE DAVID KREINCES

In 2008, the S&P 500 fell by -37%, while TLT gained 34%, and in 2002, the S&P 500 fell by -22% while TLT rose by 17%. Longterm Treasuries will not contribute a positive return every year, but this bond ETF has often been critical for portfolio protection when equities have crashed. CRASH PROTECTION

Over the past decade, Income & Growth delivered a total return of 92%, or roughly 7% annualized. The total return was competitive with the Buffett and Swensen asset allocations, but this balanced portfolio only fell by -4% in 2008, exhibiting far lower risk. The Income & Growth investable benchmark has 42% allocated to global equities (VT), 8% in REITs (VNQ ) and 50% in long-term Treasuries (TLT). ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

To enhance diversification, many investors add real estate exposure to their portfolios with REIT index ETFs. While the Income & Growth investable benchmark includes an 8% allocation to U.S. REITs (VNQ ), we temporarily shifted this allocation in 2016 to overweight semiconductors (SMH). Given the rate that Amazon (AMZN), and artificial intelligence in general, are replacing human labor with smart machines, the strong relative outperformance trend in semiconductors may continue. Â


In the May CVL issue, the third step to investment success will examine how certain leading portfolio managers utilize rules-based risk controls, including trend following, especially when using leverage. LEADING GROWTH STOCKS

LEVERAGE

For many years, our firm, ETF Portfolio Management (ETF PM), advised clients against using portfolio leverage. However, early in 2016, we introduced our first leveraged income and growth portfolios, also known as “leveraged risk parity.” In the April CVL issue, the second part of this series will cover leveraged ETFs and the risks and rewards associated with leverage in active and passive portfolios. RISK CONTROL

Experienced investors learn to expect the unexpected. Extreme market environments are unpredictable, and it is best to have efficient risk control plans ready.

Everyone would like to be an early investor in the next great company that delivers a return comparable to Apple (AAPL), Alphabet (GOOGL), Amazon (AMZN) or Facebook (FB). At ETF PM, we recently purchased Tesla (TSLA) and Nvidia (NVDA) for clients well before those stocks became household names. In 2013, we strongly recommended Tesla before the stock rallied 154%, and last year, we “pounded the table” on NVDA, which quickly rose by 180% to become the top performing stock in the S&P 500! In the June CVL issue, the fourth part in this series will cover leading growth stocks, our stock rotation process and top picks for the second half of 2017. While past performance is never a guarantee of future results, be sure to catch all four steps to investment success! David Kreinces is the Founder & Portfolio Manager for ETF Portfolio Management (ETF PM), a Thousand Oaks-based financial advisor. To learn more, visit ETFPM.com or call 866.409.5844.

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Arthur Murray – Woodland Hills 21723 Van Owen St. (818) 225-8000 March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

41


Giving Back

Angels P R OJ E C T :

T H E LI T T L E

PROVIDING HOPE & HE ALING FOR ANIMAL S

ARTICLE TRACY MARCYNZSYN PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED

W

hen a little kitten named Pirate came down with an eye infection, a Los Angeles shelter placed it on the “red list” to be euthanized. Lucky for Pirate, animal rescue organization FixNation saved the suffering kitten just in time, calling on Darlene Geekie, RVT, and Dr. Gary Latos, DVM, at Veterinary Angels Medical Center in Agoura Hills to help treat Pirate’s eye, which had to be removed. Similarly, Canela, a pocket pit bull, was scheduled to be euthanized due to his cough and breed. This time, Love that Dog Hollywood swooped in to save Canela, again relying on Darlene’s program to treat his cough, which turned out to be a simple and easy-to-cure kennel cough. Thanks to dedicated rescue organizations, Pirate and Canela were treated and placed in forever homes, saving them from the fate of some 2.7 million animals that are euthanized annually in California. Sadly, some 1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats are put to death each year because of a lack of resources to house and care for them in shelters. Animals suffering from a medical condition are often euthanized before healthier animals who may have more of a chance to be adopted. It is for this reason that Darlene, owner of Veterinary Angels Medical Center, established The Little Angels Project, a 501c3 nonprofit organization with the mission to reduce euthanasia rates of animals by providing surgical and medical treatment. For the past 16 years, Darlene has been partnering with area animal welfare organizations and leading education efforts to aid animals in need. “Nothing great can be done alone,” says Darlene. “We collaborate with other organizations by providing the medical care for pets

42

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


NG N I H CA T O T N A NE “ E GR DO E” BE ON AL Pirate (after)

Pirate (before)

Love that Dog Hollywood rescues a dog needing medical care

they have rescued. It’s kind of like a synergy,” she explains. “One of the biggest problems with rescues is most of their funds go toward paying for expensive medical care, leaving them with less money to pay for shelter pull fees, food, care and events for adoptions.” By providing low-to-no-cost medical care for these animals in need, The Little Angels Project saves rescue organizations money they can use to save more animals’ lives. From primary care to more complex surgical procedures and emergency treatment, The Little Angels Project treats all types of animals, from dogs and cats to farm animals and exotics. Darlene and her team recently helped diagnose and provide hospice care for Malika the elephant who had cancer and operated on Evan the alpaca’s ACL. “We feel this much-needed help will contribute to making our community a better place for people and animals alike,” says Darlene. Her organization also works with an RVT college program that helps hold her rescue wellness clinics once a quarter. "We want to help our veterinary community while spreading awareness," she says. The Little Angels Project provides care exclusively for 501c3 rescues. IT TAKES A VILLAGE

THE LITTLE ANGELS PROJECT PARTNERS Veterinary Angels Medical Center, VetAgouraHills.com FixNation, FixNation.org Animal Tracks, Inc., AnimalTracksInc.org

The Little Angels Project depends on donations and community support to help in its mission to save animals who are desperately in need of aid while waiting in shelters and animal sanctuaries. “Monthly donations provide three times the impact by allowing us to plan ahead and provide the much-needed help, hope and healing all year long for these animals in need,” says Darlene. In addition to financial assistance, people can get involved by volunteering their time, helping with various tasks from caring for animals to raising awareness through social media, event planning and fundraising. Donations of supplies, such as clean towels and blankets, cots for dogs, dog beds, leashes and toys, are also welcome. Located at Veterinary Angels Medical Center, 29348 Roadside Drive Unit B in Agoura Hills, The Little Angels Project operates two to four days a week. To help meet its fundraising goal of $100,000 by year’s end or to learn more about volunteering, visit LittleAngelsProject.com or call 818.865.1800.

March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

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Locally Owned

BORROW FROM YOUR

401K? ARTICLE ROCKY MILLS

I

f you need to borrow a small sum, you may want to see if your 401K is a good borrowing source. In this article, we’ll review the process and some of the key advantages and disadvantages. PROCESS First, check with your 401K plan’s administrator. In order to borrow from your 401K, the plan you’re in has to allow it. Most plans do, but not all, and some only allow borrowing for certain hardships. How much can you borrow? If your plan allows borrowing, the law permits you to borrow (1) the greater of $10,000 or 50% of your vested account balance, or (2) $50,000, whichever is less. So, for example, if you have $250,000 in your plan, the maximum amount you could borrow would be $50,000. If you have $40,000 in your plan, you’d be allowed to borrow $20,000. What does it cost? The interest rates are set by your plan. Typically, these rates are lower than personal loans or through a credit card. ADVANTAGES • The process is usually pretty quick. Your plan has the required form(s), which may be online. • Generally, you’ll have five years to pay the loan back, making a payment at least quarterly. Many plans will set you up on a payroll deduction for the loan’s repayment. • Most plans allow you to pay back the loan early, without penalty. • The interest you pay goes to you, not a finance company.

46

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

DISADVANTAGES • You’re borrowing cash from your 401K account. If you don’t have enough cash on hand to cover what you’re borrowing, you may have to liquidate a portion of your 401K investments. This means, of course, that you’re taking funds away from what they were invested to fund. • If you can't repay the loan, it is considered defaulted, and you will be taxed on the outstanding balance, including an early withdrawal penalty if you are under age 59½. • Interest on the loan is not tax-deductible, even if you borrow to purchase your primary home. Again, start with a chat with your plan administrator. And then discuss the points raised above with your financial and tax advisors. For more information, visit IRS.gov and search for Retirement Topics – Plan Loans. Robert A. "Rocky" Mills is president of Westlake Investment Advisors in Westlake Village and can be reached at 805.277.7300 and WestlakeIA. com. He is a registered representative with and offers securities through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advice is offered by Westlake Investment Advisors, a registered investment advisor and separate entity from LPL Financial.


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DIY

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DIY HOP-INFUSED WET & DRY SHAMPOOS FOR PUPS (& CATS IF YOU'RE BRAVE)

PHOTOGRAPHY COLLEEN KELLY

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


HOMEMADE HOPS-INFUSED DOG SHAMPOO  Perfect for a fresh, deep clean scented with hops.  • 1 pint gentle natural dish washing soap  • 1 pint hop water  • 1 pint apple cider vinegar  • 3/4 cups hops • 4 oz. glycerin  • 1 tablespoon baking soda  1.  Infuse water and hops in a jar for at least an hour.  2. Mix all of the ingredients together and put in a bottle.  3. Grab your pup and suds up. Rinse thoroughly.  Voilà!  

CONTINUED >

March 2017 | Conejo Valley Lifestyle

49


DIY

(CON TI N UED)

NATURAL DRY SHAMPOO For continuous upkeep and a quick and easy refresher.

• 1 cup baking soda • 1 cup cornstarch • 1 tablespoon Apple cider vinegar powder • 5 drops of your favorite essential oil *peppermint and lavender are known to repel fleas*   • Jar/container (one with a shaker lid)  1. Combine the baking soda, cornstarch, apple cider vinegar  and essential oil; stir well.  2. Place in a container with a tight lid and shaker top.  3. Sprinkle shampoo generously over your dog's coat and use a soft brush until powder is not longer visible.  Repeat as needed and enjoy a fresh Fido!

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Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017


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Lifestyle Calendar

March MARCH 2

mile) distance through CLU community and a 20-minute campus

TANTALIZING THURSDAY RICHEEZE GOURMET MELTS

stroll. CropHungerWalk.org/ThousandOaksca

SUNLAND VINTAGE WINERY Enjoy $5 glasses of Sunland Vintage award-winning wines every

MARCH 8

Thursday. Richeeze Gourmet Food Truck features gourmet grilled

PET-TINI FUNDRAISER

cheese sandwiches, soup and more. Don't miss Cousin's Maine lob-

OXNARD LEVITY LIVE

ster March 16. SunlandVintageWinery.com

The Assisted Home Health & Hospice Foundation and Assisted Home

MARCH 3

Health & Hospice event features a comedy show, silent auction, appetizers and more. All proceeds benefit the foundation's Hands to Cuddle,

WISH NIGHT 2017

Paws to Love program, which strives to keep pets and loved ones to-

HYATT WESTLAKE PLAZA

gether until the end. Call 805.379.3656. Assisted1.com/events/PetTini/

Make-A-Wish Tri-Counties event to benefit the Make-A-Wish foundation. Casual cocktail attire. $100. Call 805.826.1178 for details.

MARCH 4

MARCH 8 OAKS CHRISTIAN HIGH SCHOOL "CINDERELLA" BEDROSIAN PAVILION

30TH ANNUAL SPRING ARTS & CRAFTS FESTIVAL

Oaks Christian high school students present "Cinderella." The mu-

BORCHARD COMMUNITY CENTER

sical runs through March 12. Afternoon performances from 2-5 p.m.

More than 100 artisans and craftpersons sell original, handmade art and craft

March 11 and 12. OaksChristian.org

items. Event features a hands-on children’s art/craft activity area. CRPD.org

MARCH 4

MARCH 9 DISCOVERY CENTER 2016-2017 SCIENCE SPEAKER SERIES

55TH ANNUAL VENTURA GEM, MINERAL, FOSSIL & LAPIDARY SHOW

CAL LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY

SEASIDE PARK

The Discovery Center for Science and Technology Science Speaker Series

The Ventura Gem & Mineral Society show runs through March 5 and

"Science Everyone Can Understand" also takes place May 4. For tickets,

features gems, minerals, rocks, fossils, jewelry, exhibits, displays, priz-

visit DiscoveryCenterScienceSpeakerSeries2016.eventbrite.com.

es, dealers, silent auction, kids' activities and free admission (parking at Seaside Park is $5). VGMS.org 

MARCH 4

MARCH 10 FINALLY FRIDAY WITH JAMIE & GAIL SUNLAND VINTAGE WINERY

COMMUNITY CONSCIENCE MARDI GRAS BALL

Jamie and Gail perform 70s and 80s vocal tributes to your favorite

HYATT WESTLAKE PLAZA

music, while you “Sip and Sway” the night away! Enjoy happy, feel-

The 25th Silver Anniversary event starts with a champagne recep-

good music and great wine. March 31 features the Ego Monkeys.

tion and entertainment by the Riverboat Dixie Jazz Band. The event

SunlandVintageWinery.com

features a silent auction, Mystery Wine Auction and a live auction, dancing and dinner. CommunityConscience.org

MARCH 5

MARCH 10 WESTLAKE JUNIOR WOMEN'S CLUB WIG & STACHE PARTY FOUR SEASONS WESTLAKE VILLAGE

CONEJO VALLEY CROP HUNGER WALK

The Westlake Junior Women's Club annual Wig and Stache Party

CALIFORNIA LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY

raises money for local nonprofits, including Many Mansions, Triunfo

Members of some 35 local clubs, schools and churches plan to walk

YMCA, Conejo Free Clinic and the Cancer Support Community. $80

to raise awareness and funds for international relief and develop-

per person, includes a cocktail, hors d'oeuvres, raffle, dancing and

ment and local hunger-related charities. The event features a 10K (6.2

silent auction. WestlakeJuniors.org

52

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

CONTINUED >


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Lifestyle Calendar

(CON TI N U ED)

MARCH 11 BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS OF VENTURA COUNTY BOWL FOR KIDS' SAKE HARLEY'S CAMARILLO BOWL Some 150 program youth from Oxnard, Fillmore and Santa Paula get to have a day

FINAL HOMES NOW SELLING New homes in the heart of Thousand Oaks

full of fun. Breakfast, a motivational speaker and bowling games with prizes precede a California State University, Channel Islands S.T.E.A.M. program, including a science fair, undergraduate student panel presentation about college preparedness and a campus tour. BBSVC.org/BOWL

MARCH 11 29TH ANNUAL ST. PATRICK'S DAY PARADE VENTURA Ventura Elks Lodge #1430 presents "The Sporting Life: The Games We Play" St. Patrick's Day parade. Route starts at San Buenaventura Mission, travels up East Main Street and ends at North Chestnut Street. VenturaStPatricksDayParade.com

Don’t miss out on this beautiful community of solar powered homes! Discover the best of smart innovation and local charm at The Oaks Collection by City Ventures! As one of the only communities in Thousand Oaks, this enclave in the foothills of the Santa Monica Mountains is an ideal and central location to enjoy a variety of activities. With great schools and exceptionally safe neighborhoods, it’s a family-friendly city providing the lifestyle you’re looking for in a location you’ll love. • 26 Mediterranean style tri-level townhomes

• Shopping & dining nearby

• Direct 2-car garage access

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• Miles of open trails for hiking & biking activities

• Easy freeway access

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E Hillcres

E T ho u s

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Longboards, student entertainment and silent and live auctions. OaksChristian.org 101

CONTINUED >

Oaks

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adult. SBOrchidShow.com

MARCH 18

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Lifestyle Calendar

(CON TI N U ED)

MARCH 19 31ST ANNUAL ST. JOSEPH'S

DR. SHARON CROWDER DDS IN ASSOCIATION WITH

DAY CELEBRATION ST. PASCHAL BAYLON CHURCH The Italian Catholic Federation (ICF) hosts the 31st annual event, featuring a bake sale, viewing and blessing of the traditional St. Joseph’s Table and a pasta dinner with raffle prizes and musical entertainment. Proceeds benefit St. Paschal Baylon Church and other charities. Dinner tickets are $15 for adults/$8 for children. Call 805.368.3384. ICFBranch380.org

MARCH 19 CELEBRATION OF THE WHALES FESTIVAL MARINE EMPORIUM LANDING, CHANNEL ISLANDS HARBOR

AGOURA HILLS

5921 KANAN ROAD, AGOURA HILLS, CA 91301

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Creating Smiles That Put

Celebrate the migration of the Pacific Grey Whales at this event featuring live entertainment, whale and marine education exhibits, whale watching excursions, an arts and crafts market, children's activities, BBQ and seafood booths and a certified Farmer's Market.

MARCH 22 LIFE IN COLOR DANCE PERFORMANCE OAKS CHRISTIAN Oaks Christian high school dance students present this entertaining, colorful performance. Open to the public. OaksChristian.org

MARCH 26 12TH ANNUAL FRIENDSHIP WALK IN AGOURA HILLS WILLOW ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Nonprofit Friendship Circle of Agoura Hills sponsors this Friendship Walk for volunteers, families and friends of special needs kids to show their appreciation and support through an exciting fundraising opportunity. A 5K is followed by a family fun walk, food and enter-

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MARCH 27 CHARITY LUNCHEON & TENNIS

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LAS POSAS COUNTRY CLUB The Meadowlark Service League event starts with tennis, followed by boutique shopping at 10 a.m., lunch and a fashion show. Call 805.630.7257.

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Parting Thoughts

Unconditional

Love

W

e all have some loyal friends in this world, but if you have been lucky enough to find a furry friend that honors you, even when you have not brushed your teeth or have gained a little weight, you have been blessed with one of the greatest friendships of all time. Our pets represent the true meaning of unconditional love. Knowing they’ve been waiting all day for you to get home so they can just love on you is one of the best rewards of having a pet. What animals do you have a passion for? Some like large animals for throwing balls, hiking or going to the beach. Others like small animals that are snuggly, quiet and perfect for relaxing with while reading a book. Some people choose their animals just based off of their love for good company and companionship. I’ve mentioned some ways we are comforted by our pets, but what about the ways that we comfort them? Do we take time to make sure they are being fed the right food and get enough daily exercise? Have you ever considered if they get bored with the same food that they eat every day? All that our pets really ask for is to be treated kindly in return for their unconditional love. Our furry friends are always grateful for the love and kindness that we provide them. It is important for us to speak to our pets often, for our voices are their music. Feed them clean healthy food and keep their bowl full of water, as they cannot tell you when they are thirsty. Also, remember to bring your pets inside when it is wet and cold since they are domestic animals and are no longer accustomed to the bitter elements of nature. I used to have the most amazing Golden Retriever, who was sadly harmed by the poisonous dog food that was being sold in stores not too long ago. I lost my Golden to this awful epidemic and it made me so nervous and cautious about buying store-bought dog food that I started making my own dog food made with rice, ground beef and vegetables. I have to say, my other dogs loved the home-cooked meals! Just like making food for my children, I knew exactly what was in it 58

Conejo Valley Lifestyle | March 2017

and did not have to worry about my pets getting sick from eating it. My mother used to always feed her dogs boiled chicken and giblets, which they absolutely loved eating. What do you feed your pets? If you don’t have a pet, take a moment to evaluate whether you might enjoy having a furry and unconditional loving friend in your life, and whether you have the resources to take care of a pet in your home. Which furry friend do you think would enhance your everyday life? The rewards of having a pet completely outweigh the extra time required to take care of your new best friend. I want to mention that choosing your new best friend is just as important as choosing a partner in life, so make sure to decide wisely and go with what your heart tells you. In some ways it might be easier to look at your present life before deciding what kind of pet you want to have. Are you a couch potato or an active person always on the go? Start with that in the decision-making process, because you definitely want to choose a pet that complements your lifestyle, so that you won’t get overwhelmed and you will better enjoy each other! Listen to the Kim Pagano Show Saturdays from 6-8 a.m. on 1590 KVTA, visit KimPaganoShow.com or tune in to her podcast at iTunes/The Kim Pagano Show for inspiration.


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Conejo Valley March 2017  

March 2017 Issue of Conejo Valley Lifestyle

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