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Keeping on the

Cutting Edge

SIMPLIFYING CHRISTMAS | Jason 'Kidjay' Wagers


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An

Take Note ///////

Unforgettable Christmas “My bittersweet, exceptional Christmas gift of 1971�

H CHRISTMAS

CLARK

AIR FORCE BASE

REPUBLIC OF THE

PHILIPPINES

1971

By: Rick Gibbs Of 44 Christmas holidays shared with my wife, 1971 stands out as a bittersweet one. Our daughter was two and our son was 11 months. Christmas toys came into the Base Exchange in September and were gone within days. Similarly, the live Christmas trees arrived around the 1st of December. This presented the problem of keeping a cut tree alive for weeks in a tropical country. The kids marveled at a tree kept in a new metal garbage can filled half full with water and placed in front of an air conditioner. Kathy always bought more than our children needed so she could give toys to the Fire Department for less fortunate families. That tradition still continues. As a family, we savored the thrill of our children's wide eyes on Christmas morning and marveled how the simplest toys generated the most appreciation. It was that sweet. I was not originally supposed to be home on that day. Lt. Dan Poyner had come to me with a request over Thanksgiving. He wanted to know if he could take my place on my December assignment to the Vietnam War. Dan said he wanted a chance to participate in combat before the war ended. His brother had been killed a few years back while flying a combat mission and he wanted to

RICK GIBBS AND KIDS

do this to honor his brother's memory. I agreed and stayed home in the Philippines for the holidays. Dan flew his first mission, which would have been mine if we had not switched. The bitter is that Dan did not return from that mission. He was killed in combat at age 26. Not long after Christmas, Kathy was at the church service for Dan, while I flew in the airplane that pulled abruptly up and out of the flight of four fighter aircraft for the Missing Man formation. Since that bittersweet Christmas of 1971, I often reflect on the effect of Dan's loss. From the perspective of time passed, I realize that I was given an exceptional Christmas gift. It was nothing less than: the years for my wife and I to grow old together; the opportunity to spend another 40 plus holidays with our children; the joy of watching grandchildren experience their first wide eyed Christmas morning. Life is precious and short, so Kathy and I have tried to live our lives in a way that Dan would be proud of. While we have not always measured up, I believe, that on all our Christmas Days, Dan has looked down on us and said, "Rick and Kathy, you made the most of the life I preserved for you". MyMurrietaMag.com |

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Contents

issue4

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departments

21

5 Publisher's Note

Cover Story

27

6 Shear Envy Salon

Rising Star

10

10 Kanisha & Monique Lange

18 6 Ask the Expert

features

13 Wellness

14 Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake Recipe

Citizen Journal 15 Simplifying Christmas 24 Holiday Confessionals

Blazing Tales

16 From the Heart

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22 Health Tip 31 Library

18 Santa Paws

Meet Your Neighbor 21 Jason ‘Kidjay’ Wagers

Students of the Month 27 November

Community Corner 28 The 411 on Murrieta 4

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Publisher’s Note ///////

//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// Publisher Tracy Blanscet Editor Rachael Shay Contributors

A

round my house, I’m known for always singing (and making up lyrics when I don’t really know them.) I have a song to fit any situation. On the cold days I get eye rolls from my teens when they hear me signing, “the weather outside is frightful... but my bed is so delightful…” I have to admit, I don’t love the cold. But on the cold days, I remind myself how lucky I am to live here, where cold isn’t really all that cold. I’m thankful that when we “visit” the snow, I get to come home afterward. 2003

Rick Gibbs Stephanie Constantino Terry A. Rondberg Robin Beck Shannon Schaeffer Rebecca Flansburg Amy Watson Photographer Terina Matthews photography Art Director/Graphic Design Fara Asay MyMurrieta Magazine 27890 Clinton Keith Road, D-306 Murrieta, CA 92562 cell | 951.265.3173 office | 951.801.5332 www.mymurrietamag.com www.facebook.com/mymurrietamagazine

To contact editor: tracy@mymurrietamag.com

Editorial content is provided by advertisers and is expressly intended as general information and for entertainment purposes only. Editorial content is not offered as advice, recommendations, or as an endorsement. Editorial content is intended only as statements of opinion, not statements of fact. The publisher makes no representations or guarantees, express or implied, to the accuracy of any information contained in editorial content or advertisements. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publishers. Express written permission must be granted to re-print or copy any material contained herein.

I’m hosting Blanscet Christmas right here in Murrieta this year. It was our secret plan to avoid driving away to someone else’s home during the season of traffic. (Don’t tell my in-laws!) Unfortunately, I’ve never been a great hostess. The first time I cooked a turkey for company, it wasn’t done and had to return to the oven for 2 more hours! That sort of scarred me and I’m still intimidated cooking a turkey. Luckily, everyone is bringing dishes to share, so I’m sure I can do just fine making two or three dishes. Plus, I plan to wear a cute apron, which automatically sends the message that I’m a great cook who’s been slaving in the kitchen, right? I’d like to offer a special ‘thank you’ to our advertisers, who share my heart for community. We are able to provide this magazine free because of them. If you have friends who don’t get My Murrieta Magazine in their mail, copies can be picked up in several locations: the easiest spots being the library, senior center, city hall, and chamber of commerce. This magazine is for the community by the community and you have a chance to be a part of it. We always love to feature stories written by our own neighbors. If you have a story to tell, write it. If you’re nervous, call me. I’ll talk you through it. Did I ever tell you how nervous I was to write the first article in the first magazine? You don’t have to have an English degree to write. Put it on your list of goals for the new year, ok? I only know so many people, so I’m depending on my neighbors in the community for ideas on whom to feature. In fact, before you forget, you should probably send me an e-mail now. tracy@mymurrietamag.com Your Neighbor,

Tracy


/////// Feature

One can see two ladies who are passionate about their work, their “work family,� and their clients. Simply put, they love what they do.

Shear Envy Salon:

Keeping on the

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Feature /////// By: Stephanie Constantino

H

ave you ever heard the term, “avant garde?” It’s a term used in fashion to describe individuals that push the boundaries. They are innovative and lead the way in fashion trends. Patricia (Patty) Barber and Melanie Askins definitely prove to be avant garde in the hair styling industry. The mother-daughter duo are the owners of Shear Envy Salon, and they have dedicated their talents to providing trendy, eye-catching hairstyles to their clientele. Patty earned her cosmetology license by the time she was 18, and immediately went to work. A few years later, she married a man who was also a stylist, and they opened a salon together. “We were booked solid from the very fist day,” she recalls. After Patty gave birth to her third child, Melanie, she took a step back from working to be a stay-at-home mom. As Melanie was growing up, she watched her mother do hair in their home for family members. In high school Melanie’s friends often appealed to Patty to do their hair for special occasions. She was also known for saving the day whenever her daughter’s friends came over, teary-eyed and distraught over a botched haircut or color. Patty recalls how Melanie gave haircuts to her dolls and Barbie’s beginning around age 4. “She couldn’t understand why their hair wouldn’t grow back after she cut it,” she smiles. “I remember using markers to ‘highlight’ my doll’s hair,” Melanie adds. Melanie decided to become a hairstylist at the age of 20, graduating from a local beauty school in Temecula. She’s now worked as a stylist in the valley for over 17 years. Eight of those years were spent simultaneously working as an educator for REDKEN. This was exciting as she got to travel periodically to New York and style hair for the actors and actresses on Broadway. In 2005, when Melanie began working at Image Makers Salon, she saw at once the place had tremendous potential. The owner was not a stylist, so she saw many things that she would change and improve. She let the owner know multiple times that if he ever wanted to sell the salon, she was very interested in purchasing it. It became a running joke. Melanie went on out maternity leave when she gave birth to her third child. Her baby boy was only a month old when her phone rang with the opportunity of her lifetime. The owner of the salon was ready to sell! She immediately called her mother, and it was a whirlwind. They acted immediately and within 24 hours, the paperwork was signed, and the salon was theirs! It all happened before they could secondguess anything. In retrospect they are thankful they didn’t hesitate.

Cutting Edge MyMurrietaMag.com |

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//////// Feature

There were others interested in purchasing the salon as well. Apparently even distributors, and vendors recognized that the place was a gem. The two ladies had a shared vision for their new salon, which they renamed Shear Envy. They wanted to create a place where contemporary, fashion-forward thinking stylists could exercise their creative edge. Their motto: “Progressive not prohibitive; we always stand ‘on the edge,’ but not over it.” They like to push the boundaries while still giving clients realistic, stylish outcomes. They wanted to build a reputation for their excellent customer service, high quality products, and creating hairstyles that made their clients feel incredible. Education and staff development were equally as important to them, because they wanted their stylists to remain on the cutting edge and feel like they were a part of something truly special. They approached the business as a divide-andconquer mission. Patty briefly considered a return to styling hair, but after 20 years working in a chiropractic office, she naturally fell into running the business side of things. She does reception and administration. As manager, Melanie took on the duty of hiring and directing staff. She also works as a stylist. With 17 stylists who are mostly women, things could be complicated, but this team has a strong bond. “When I interviewed here I had offers from other salons. But I came into Shear Envy and I just knew this was the place I wanted to be. It felt like home,” shared Becca Partin. “It feels like a family.” 8

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Patty agreed that it really does feel like family. “It’s unusual to have so many people work together and get along so well,” she says. Within a month, the transition was complete. They didn’t have time to question their decision because it all happened so fast. “Deep down we knew with our passion and vision we could do anything,” says Melanie confidently. Mother and Daughter agree, the adventure so far has been fun.

23905 Clinton Keith Rd Wildomar, CA 92595 (951) 600-1661

M-F 9am-6pm Sat 9am-5pm Sun-closed

It’s obvious they love what they do. The most amazing part of this salon is definitely their commitment to meeting the customers’ needs and expectations. They pride themselves on the art of listening. “We truly listen to what our clients want, and we keep up on our training and education so we can deliver it. We take the time to show our clients how they can recreate their salon-look at home,” explains Patty. The stylists spend some time asking questions to figure out a style that works for the client. This can make all the difference in a client feeling confident and enthusiastic when they leave. Although they keep

a watch on trending styles, the technicians can also deliver simple wash and wear styles. Melanie explains that hair trends follow fashion trends with fabric textures, patterns, colors, and shapes all considerations. This is a salon that keeps up on trends. “Our clients expect it,” explains Melanie. When someone comes in wanting ‘a haircut like Jennifer Aniston got 4 days ago,’ they can oblige. They keep their eye on Hollywood for changes their clients are sure to be asking about. Mom and daughter both feel proud of putting together an amazing and talented team of stylists. They know how to recognize stylists that have the same passion for people and profession that they do. They are also proud of the high quality AVEDA products they carry. These are luxurious, high-quality products that are plant-based and sustainable. Both of Melanie’s daughters have followed in their mother’s and grandmother’s footsteps. Melanie’s eldest daughter Kirra, 20, graduated from the same cosmetology school that Melanie did, and is practicing her craft in Northern California. Her middle child Kylie, 18, works in the ‘family business’ at Shear Envy. She works as a receptionist and helps schedule appointments. It’s evident that the joy they’ve found in this profession has been passed down through the generations. Looking into the faces of Patty and Melanie, one can see two ladies who are passionate about their work, their “work family,” and their clients. Simply put, they love what they do.«


MyMurrietaMag.com |

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email: tracy@MyMurrietamag.com

Seeking Advertising Rep.


/////// Rising Star

S

By Tracy Blanscet

isters, Kanisha and Monique Lange, started dancing and cheerleading when they were only six and four years old and haven’t stopped since. Now the siblings cheer for Vista Murrieta High School and coach their own youth teams through Murrieta Mavericks, along with their mom, Diana. In addition to working and cheering, both girls have managed to maintain 4.0 GPAs. Their interest started when they signed WORK, up with a local competitive cheer group. CHEER AND Along the way, several of the girls in this group broke off to form their own team, the MAINTAIN A 4.0 GPA Murrieta Mavericks. They were a winning team: learning a new routine every six weeks and taking the first place spot at nearly every competition. A few years later, the coach who was running the new team was ready to leave. That’s when Diana Lange stepped into the position. She hired a choreographer that first year of taking the team on, but by the second year, the eldest of her two daughters, Kanisha, began to choreograph the routines. Now both daughters coach the cheer teams as well. The Murrieta Mavericks have won the State and National Championships for the last 2 years: An amazing accomplishment for the team members and their young coaches! “Kanisha and Monique are excellent role models for young girls,” cheer parent, Josaline Cuesta praises. “They embody everything I hope my daughter to be at their age. They figured out what they wanted to do in life and went after it. That drive is something to be admired.” Josaline’s 4-year-old daughter, Isabella, is on the Tiny’s Team. Kanisha and Monique are finding out for themselves that life is really what you make of it. Putting time and effort into developing their talents has led to their ability to take on the task of training others. Equally impressive has been their performance in school. These sisters are not just coaches, they are future leaders; and that is something we can all cheer for! «

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Kanisha & Monique Lange

CHAMPION

C OAC H E S


Age: 18 – Senior at Vista Murrieta High School Varsity Cheer, captain Coaches: Mini’s team 6-8, Junior’s Team 8-18, and Stunt Team A natural leader and a gifted teacher. Accomplishments: Choreographing cheer routines since age 14 Winner of the All-Star award at cheer camp 4 consecutive years. Coaches state and national championship-winning youth cheer teams. Future goals: Wants to be a radiology tech in addition to running the youth cheer teams. Would love to open a gym with her mom as the Murrieta Mavericks program grows.

Age: 15 – Sophomore at Vista Murrieta High School Junior Varsity Cheer, captain Coaches: Tiny’s 6-8, and assists with others Great with children and very artistic. Interesting fact: She loves Motorcross and enjoys riding motorcycles and quads with her dad. Future goals: Plans to continue coaching cheer and go to college after high school. Would love to become an interpreter for the deaf. MyMurrietaMag.com |

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Is your body on toxic overload?

Ask the Expert / wellness ///////

By Dr. Terry A. Rondberg

Face it; we live in a toxic world. No matter how healthy your eating habits are, your body is filled with toxins. You can't help it. There are chemicals everywhere we go – in the air we breathe, on the food we eat, and even in water we drink. That doesn't even take into account the steroids, antibiotics, and all of the pills we take. Many common ailments and diseases are frequently linked directly to toxic overload: Asthma Headaches Rheumatoid Arthritis Fatigue Depression Crohn's Disease Mental Illness Diabetes Hypertension Menstrual Problems Bloating Insomnia It's important to detoxify your body to maintain your optimal health. Detoxifying your body can lead to: Recharged vitality Increased energy Increased mental clarity Improved digestion Reduced inflammation Weight Loss Boosted immune response Better sleep Anti-aging

Think of a detox as a body reboot. It gives you the opportunity to get rid of the toxins in your body and start over with a clean slate. So now that you know “why" a detox is important, let me explain "how" to accomplish it. A full detox, is 21 days and will help your body purify and rebuild from the inside out. You’ll be amazed at how good you’ll feel. A health professional can guide you on this type of plan to be sure you’re diet is supporting your major organ systems with vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients found in whole foods. Afterwards, you should transition into a healthy way of eating that will help you continue your journey toward looking and feeling your best for the rest of your life. The best plan is to consume whole foods with plenty of organic fruits and vegetables if possible. These foods are naturally good for you and will help you detox your body... 1. Citrus, such as lemons and limes 2. Garlic - it can ward off more than vampires! 3. Fruits and raw green foods such as kale, spinach, chard, parsley, celery, cucumber, collard greens etc. 4. Green tea 5. Seeds and nuts raw such as flax seeds, chia seeds, almonds, and sunflower seeds. 6. Omega-3 oils such as coconut and olive oil.

TEMECULA WELLNESS CENTER 28780 Old Town Front St. Ste. D-7 951-699-5000 www.temeculawellnesscenter.com

Lemon or lime juice also offer you a wonderful healthy way to enjoy enhancing the natural flavors of many types of foods. Toxic chemicals are all around us. Short of living in a bubble, you will come into contact with them. The best thing you can do to stay healthy is to eat good organic foods, drink plenty of ionized alkaline water, get enough sleep and exercise, and detox regularly. Raw alkaline foods, like green vegetables or berries are terrific for detoxing your body on a daily basis. Flax seeds and chia seeds along with olive oil or coconut oil are also excellent things to add to protein shakes with stevia as a natural sweetener. These ideas can enhance your lifestyle and nutrition as well as helping you detoxify your body. Using the tips I've listed above can help you detoxify on a continual basis. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, try detoxing before looking to medications that may add further complications.« (See facing page for free educational workshops to learn more.)

Dr. Rondberg experiences: • Diplomate of the College of Energy Medicine • Diplomate of the College of Mind-Body Medicine • Certified Massage Therapist • President of World Chiropractic Alliance • Doctor of Chiropractic MyMurrietaMag.com |

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§

§

/////// Recipe

Triple Chocolate

Bundt Cake §

§

A recipe from your neighbor

{

}

Shannon Schaeffer

ingredients: 1 package (2 layer) devil's food cake mix 1 package (3 3/4 oz) instant chocolate pudding 4 eggs 1/2 cup cooking oil 1 cup sour cream 1/2 cup warm water 1 (6 oz) pkg. chocolate chips glAze 2 Tablespoons butter, melted 1/2 cup powdered sugar 1 teaspoon milk (or as much as needed to make smooth consistency)

directions:

Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 50 minutes Ready In: 1 hour Yields: 12 servings

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray In large bowl, combine all ingredients except chocolate chips Beat 3 minutes at medium speed Add chocolate chips and beat 1 minute more Pour batter in prepared pan Bake 50 minutes or until cake tests done Cool in pan 15 minutes and turn out to cool more

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To mAke glAze: Combine melted butter and powdered sugar and add milk a little at a time, stirring until smooth Pour glaze on top with back and forth motion in grooves of cake ADDITIoNAl ToUCHeS: Use Cream Cheese frosting and pipe on to make a beautiful presentation! Fill hole with strawberries or a flower too. I like to use a poinsettia for Christmas.


Citizen Journal ///////

Simplifying Christmas

By: Rebecca Flansburg

E

very year it seems there are more and more things demanding our attention during the holidays. Run here, run there, run, run everywhere. Our To Do list becomes so big it threatens to need its own zip code. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to return to the time when Christmas was more about family and creating memories rather who can score more gifts? Are you dreaming of a simple Christmas? Here’s why less is more and how you can get there.

1 Choose a live tree this year and keep decorating simple. Rather than placing tons of ornaments and tinsel on the tree, place a simple strand of lights and a few ornaments that really mean something to your family. Some of our favorite ornaments are ones made by kids in school. Precious memories always make for great tree décor.

2

Suggest that everyone make gifts for family members instead of partaking in retail spending until your wallet groans. If you feel you must buy gifts, choose one large gift that can be for the entire family. The rest of the gifts could be ones you can make and give.

3

Heirlooms, keepsakes and memories make great gifts too. Gather favorite family recipes throughout the months leading to Christmas. Take those recipes and create a family cookbook. Include family photos or stories and you’ll have an awesome gift which will mean so much to those who receive it. It doesn’t have to beep, honk or need batteries to be a meaningful gift.

4

Lastly, talk to your children about Christmas. Explain what it originally meant and what it means to you. If your family doesn’t celebrate Christmas, or celebrates in a different way, take time to explain how different families and cultures each have their own traditions. A simple Christmas is within your grasp if you seek out ways to be peaceful and avoid the stress of the holiday. So how will you celebrate this year? MyMurrietaMag.com |

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//////// From the Heart

By Tracy Blanscet

CHRISTMAS 2005 I was newly divorced and attending school full time after 13 years of being a stay-at-home mom to my five children. Knowing I could use a little extra help, a friend of mine recommended I apply for Salvation Army’s Christmas help for low-income families that she read about in the newspaper. I called the number she wrote down for me to see what it was all about. I went to their office while the kids were at school and a little uneasy. Even though we had to live very frugally, we were not destitute. The application asked for gift ideas for each of my children, a family gift idea, and even ideas for myself. The lady I met with told me that most likely the Children would be represented as a name and a wish on a tree that people could select from, but the other ideas were just in case we were “adopted” as a family. She explained that a family isn’t adopted year after year, and so it is rare to be adopted. It was difficult for me to fill out the paperwork. It struck me how “absent” I’d been that year, since my attention was mostly on the necessities of life and attending school. I really didn’t even know what size clothes my children wore since most of their clothes were they were hand-me-downs. I had to call my oldest daughter who was 13 to ask her to check sizes and think of present ideas. I felt terrible for not knowing what they might want. A week or two before Christmas, I received a letter explaining that our family had been adopted and when I should come to

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pick up the gifts. I still didn’t fully understand what it meant to be “adopted,” so when I came into a room with a pile of boxes and bags organized for each family it really was a surprise. Each wrapped gift was labeled with the names of my children. I won’t lie… I didn’t wait to get home to look through those packages. I pulled over after I left the building and looked through it all. There were toys, clothes, a gift card to the grocery store for Christmas dinner, and a very nice quality four-slice toaster (our family gift). My chest felt tight and my eyes were a little leaky because of this outpouring of generosity. I did not tell the children that the gifts came from someone else. I didn’t want them to worry about our finances and it was somewhat embarrassing at the time. CHRISTMAS 2012 Seven years later, our circumstances had changed quite a bit. I had finished school at Loma Linda, started working, and had gotten re-married over the summer. As Christmas approached, I had started talking to my children and husband about adopting a family from Salvation Army. We picked a family with a mom and three children. I planned for my family to actively participate in shopping for our adopted family, but when it came time to go, there was grumbling, eye rolling,


From the Heart ///////

and general resistance from the kids. They thought I should go shop for our adopted family myself. I made them go anyway, reminding (lecturing) them a bit about Christmas being a season of giving. Each step of the process from picking the family to delivering the gifts had me at the edge of tears, but the kids didn’t know why it meant so much to me. While shopping, I pointed out to my children that when someone is really struggling to get by, they don’t ask for typical presents that a child might want: instead they list needs: like a coat or sweatshirt… or shampoo. I pointed out that one of the children in our adopted family, an eleven year old, asked for exactly that. So we purchased the shampoo and lotion listed as gift ideas but we also picked out something fun. The toughest part was when it came time for the “optional” items. Optional items listed such are clothing, toiletries, household items, etc. In our tradition, toiletries were already stocking stuffers. It was the clothing that was tough for me: practical and affordable seemed ingrained in my thinking. I wanted to buy sweats because they are warm and inexpensive, but my conscience kept bugging me. The boys were easy to buy for. It was the girl’s outfit that was so difficult. You see, seven years ago, when we were the ones adopted, my seven-year-old daughter received a very special outfit: An amazing pink top with a sparkly crown and jeans with sparkled embellishments. A luxury I had never provided her. I had a dilemma on my hands. I would put the warm (and affordable) sweats in my basket and then I’d change my mind and replace them with sparkly jeans. I went back and forth like this repeatedly, my conscious playing tug-of-war with me. My 14-year-old daughter, who was in favor of the sparkle jeans, got frustrated with my inability to decide. “Just get the sweats then!” she said moodily. So I got the sweats. But as we were driving home I was still tormented. “I should’ve gotten the jeans,” I lamented. “When our family was adopted, they didn’t get you sweats.” I watched my daughters face change from annoyance to curious interest. “Our family was adopted? What? When was that?” “While I was in school,” I explained. “What year,” she persisted. “What did I get for Christmas?” Thinking back, I couldn’t remember the exact present she got or which year. “Remember the year you got the jeans with sparkles?” Without hesitation she responded that yes, she did

remember, and it struck me how we could both remember the special outfit she received, but not the toy. She still seemed in disbelief that someone else bought our presents. “Would I have ever bought those expensive jeans,” I asked. “Did I ever buy jeans like that?” Of course, she realized the truth of my statement. She excitedly remembered the shirt that was with it. We went home and looked up the old photos to see what toy she had received. We had many photos of her in her sparkly clothes to identify the year our family was adopted. The photos showed her with make up on; make up that had been my oldest daughter’s present from the anonymous givers. We didn’t ask for the clothes, her request had been Heely’s (shoes with wheels in the heels). The sparkly jeans and top were a gift from someone who could not foresee the impact they would make. I delighted in seeing each of my children look back at those Christmas photos from a new perspective. The story of the Christmas we were adopted has become more special with age. As we’ve moved further away from that place in life, it has become even more meaningful. The emotion makes it difficult to tell (and write) without tears. It’s the jeans. I can tell the story just fine until I get to the jeans. Sadly, I'm still regretting the fact that I didn’t splurge on those special and sparkly jeans last year; maybe the only pair one little girl would’ve ever had. But in the end, what matters is that the lesson was learned. I intend to make up for it this year. The Salvation Army Adopt a Family program has left a lasting impact on my family. This year even the kids are looking forward to shopping for our adopted family, with their new perspective. This is our newest tradition and it brings me amazing satisfaction imagining the joy we can give to a local family in need.

To participate call them at 951-677-1324 or e-mail Major LeAnn Trimmer. leanntrimmer@usw.salvationarmy.org MyMurrietaMag.com |

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//////// Blaze Tales

Dear Santa Paws, I’ve heard you see me when I’m sleeping and know when I’m awake. I know you’ve been busy rolling rawhide bones, and making chewy toys for all the good dogs. I’ll admit I’ve been hoping you haven’t paid close attention to my behavior all year round. I want you to know, (just in case you’ve been watching for a while) that I intend to be on my best behavior for the rest of the year. I know I’ve been in some trouble this year when I’ve done something wrong, but please do not put me on the naughty list. Do take into account that I have improved since last year and even more since the year before that. When I do get in trouble, I go right to my kennel when my people tell me to. I really am sorry, Santa, but sometimes I feel so excited about something; I just get a little out of control. Mom says even though I have my naughty moments she thinks I’m a good dog. And, Santa, please keep in mind that Dad says Mom is always right! Santa Paws, I know I’m not allowed to sleep on Mom and Dad’s bed, but when they are away and let me roam, I sometimes feel a little lonely. Those are the only days I jump onto their bed, where it seems they’re near. I promise not to get on their bed again before Christmas, if you can overlook those other times… There was that one day, when my people’s little cousin, Ethan, came over… I know I’m not allowed to touch him, because he’s allergic to me, but he’s so cute. I just wanted him to known that I was happy to see him. I mostly stayed away, but then he was talking to me so nice, and I thought it would be rude if I didn’t respond. So I just licked him a little. It was a very tiny, little kiss. I really did feel bad when his eyes got all red and puffy and he couldn’t stop itching. Remember, Santa, that he came over many other times this year and I did not kiss him or snuggle him at all. At the dog park, I’ve been a lot better this year too. I did steal my friend’s stick and run away with it, but only because I wanted him to play with me. And after he chased me awhile, I gave it back without a fight. And even though I made fun of those two Corgis for being so short, I quit teasing once we all started playing together. Santa Paws, I really am trying to be a good dog. Please leave me a present or two. Blaze

P.S. I left you a biscuit and a bowl of water by the doggie door.

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Meet your Neighbor ///////

Jason Wagers: THE SLAM DUNK DJ

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” –Confucious By Stephanie Constantino

J

ason Wagers lives the double life of his dreams: Monday through Thursday, Jason is the laid back assistant coach of the boys’ varsity basketball team at Vista Murrieta High School. Friday and Saturday, he gets behind the microphone and transforms into the lively, charismatic DJ, “Kidjay” on 99.1 KGGI radio. Jason started “work” doing both things he was most passionate about at only 14 years old. He began working as a ball boy for the Los Angeles Lakers, and simultaneously began developing his DJ-ing skills, accumulating turntables, music, and other equipment. “I remember listening to the DJ on the radio and thinking, I can do that…” recounts Jason. True to his prediction, his career as a DJ really started during his time spent attend-

ing Long Beach City College. His big break came when he volunteered as a guest DJ for a local radio station. His purpose was to promote a fundraiser, and he got the gig because of his job with the Lakers. Once he got behind the mic, he surprised everyone with his charisma. This led to a job offer. A transformation takes place when Jason takes on the role of DJ, suprising even his closest friends. His ability to steer a crowd often got him noticed. This attention led to opportunities for him; like being invited to DJ the George Lopez Show, becoming the program director for Direct TV music channels, and working as the music director & DJ for a San Diego radio station. He’s also DJ’ed at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and his job at Club Silk in Pechanga is what led him to his current home in Murrieta. Upon his move in 2007, the program director at a local radio station contacted him, inviting him to DJ for them. Jason has been very happy at 99.1 KGGI, where he becomes Radio Personality, Kidjay, on the air. Jason attributes his success to his ability to read and adapt to a crowd. He hasn’t minded schmoozing with celebrities along the way, either: both in music and sports. He’s got photos with Shaq, Kobe, Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, Rihanna, and many more: a fantasy for some, but all in the line of duty for Kidjay. During his 20+ years with the

Lakers, Jason was also a team attendant. Despite moving out of the area, he continued to commute to every single home game from San Diego. Working with the Lakers team made him realize he'd like to coach youth basketball someday. Jason’s now starting his third season with the VMHS Basketball team and, he’s really grown to love this town “It’s been a great place for my family and I can’t see myself ever leaving,” he says. He lives life to the fullest with his wife, Araceli, and two children, Justin and Jasmeen, and he is able to “work” at two jobs that he really loves. By putting his time and effort into the things he was most passionate about as a youth, Jason has created the life he dreamt of.

MyMurrietaMag.com |

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//////// Health Tip

A Simple Switch How Changing my Beverage Container Solved Multiple Conflicts By: Tracy Blanscet

As a mom with an active and busy family, with lots of kids, we were going thru multiple cases of water bottles every month. I knew there were many health concerns with using disposable plastic water bottles, but it was hard for me to give up the convenience of the grab and go water. When purchased in the average 16 oz containers, the cost per gallon can get pricey. PROBLEM: Packaging that contaminates the water Most water bottles are packaged in cheap plastic that contains BPA. BPA, or bisphenol A, is an industrial chemical used in making plastic. It is considered a toxic substance, banned from certain uses in other countries for its detrimental health effects. Although some US states and local governments have banned BPA in baby bottles, formula containers, and metal food cans, the federal government as a whole still allows BPA in food and beverage packaging. This means consumers must take it upon themselves to learn about the risks and effects. Currently Canada, the European Union, China and Malaysia have banned the chemical from items used for infants and children. BPA is widely used in plastic water bottles, plastic milk jugs, plastic storage containers, baby bottles, toys, pacifiers and sippy cups, and much more. Research has shown that even a tiny dose of the chemical can produce effects. Specifically this chem22

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ical is a hormone disruptor, which can wreak havoc on our systems. The video “The Disappearing Male” is great to get an idea of how boys are especially affected by the estrogen-mimicking chemical. According to the literature, you should avoid BPA if you’re pregnant, as it can have a serious range of effects on a fetus. /// SOLUTION: Using glass or metal bottles for your water is a great idea, but for our big, active family, I chose well-built BPA-free plastic bottles, purchasing a different color for each person in the family. The kids like having their own and this allows me to easily identify the culprit when one is left sitting out on a counter. We save money by refilling our water at home. On the down side, it’s still plastic. As kids move to adulthood, I may switch to the stainless steel containers, as I’m sure science will find other problems besides BPA in plastics in the future. PROBLEM: Quality of the water When you drink bottled water, you really don’t know what you’re drinking According to an article by Dr. Joseph Mercola, Studies show that 40% of bottled water is actually regular tap water. He explains that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards for public water supplies do NOT apply to bottled water. Bottled water is less regulated than the public water supply. There aren’t even restrictions that would

prevent a source of bottled water from being located near a dump or industrial facility. /// SOLUTION: When I use filtered water from my refrigerator, I at least know the community water supply has met the minimum standards set by the EPA. The additional filtration from my fridge brings me some peace of mind. Plus, even after considering the cost of my water bill and the cost of the filters, I’m still spending less than I was on purchasing disposable water bottles. PROBLEM: Massive amounts of waste from “disposable” plastic bottles Since we don’t see the piles and miles of waste in front of us, it’s easy to forget that all those plastic bottles are going somewhere. The bottles (along with all other plastic ever made) will not decompose, so they just sit there leaching chemicals into soil and water, hanging out for decades; an ugly legacy for our posterity. Many of us aren’t aware that there is a huge “trash island” floating in the Pacific that is twice the size of Texas. It is almost all plastic. Birds and fish die with their bellies full of plastic that they mistook for food. The Plastic Pollution Coalition explains that “recyclable” plastics are not truly recycled, but “downcycled” to make other products that will someday end up in a landfill. I figure my family alone probably contributed a minimum of 150-200 bottles per month to the problem.


Health Tip ///////

Many of us aren’t aware that there is a huge “trash island” floating in the Pacific that is twice the size of Texas. /// SOLUTION: Reusing one container over and over greatly reduces our waste. With kids in school and sports, our BPA-free bottles are a sturdy and convenient alternative for the time being. If you are able to carry your water in glass or metal, these containers would be even better because they can be fully recycled and reused and will not leach any chemicals into your water. It’s amazing what a difference one family can make and every individual really can contribute to reducing the problem.

2/3 of my daily water before lunchtime, so I start sipping when I wake up in the morning. If you drink caffeine, be aware that you will have to increase your intake of water, since caffeine is a diuretic and will add to dehydration. I hope you’ll think about making this simple change that can improve your health and your life. Cheers!

PROBLEM: Drinking enough water during the day When you are trying to lose weight or even just stay healthy, it’s essential to drink enough water. The book “Your Body’s many Cries for Water,” explains that people often mistake thirst for hunger. Eating when you really just need a drink can lead to problems with weight. According to the book, most of the body’s functions are regulated by water. Dehydration can cause fatigue, joint problem, headaches, irritability, and depression among other things. /// SOLUTION: You should be drinking ½ of your bodyweight in ounces each day. This means if you weight 150 pounds, you will drink 75 ounces of water per day. Our new beverage containers let me measure the amount of water I’m drinking now. I try to drink MyMurrietaMag.com |

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//////// Citizen Journal

Holiday Confessionals:

the Sweet, the Sticky, and the Downright Elfin By: Amy Watson

S

ometimes I wonder if I have taken my desire for family traditions a little too far. Growing up, my family did not have any traditions to speak of and while this left our schedule very flexible and did not require us to be anywhere at any specific point on the calendar, I did feel like we were missing something important. As I was growing up, I heard other kids talk about how they participated in certain family traditions every year and I loved the thought of knowing that no matter what, you could count 24

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on this happening every year because we as a family do this together. Twenty-five years later and here I am celebrating my favorite holiday with my own little family. My husband loves tradition as much as I do so our three children know they will hunt for Easter Eggs at Chief and Tia Lola’s house, Labor Day is spent in Mammoth fishing, during Thanksgiving we will be camping (well, glamping) in the desert, and Christmas is 4-6 weeks soaked in tradition because their mother just doesn’t know when to stop.

The first of the Christmas traditions begin when Elvis flies in from the North Pole right after Thanksgiving. The kids start asking about Elvis in early November. They know he is coming and they look forward to seeing their friend, the Elf on the Shelf. Each morning Elvis is in a different location in the house so there is a mad dash to be the first to find Elvis. According to tradition, Elvis and his cronies wait till the little ones are asleep and then they fly to the North Pole to report to Mr. Claus himself on the behavior of


Citizen Journal ///////

According to tradition, Elvis and his cronies wait till the little ones are asleep and then they fly to the North Pole to report to Mr. Claus himself on the behavior of their charges. their charges. This tradition works brilliantly in our home because Elvis is the equivalent of a Catholic Confessional. My children have been known to write apology letters to the Man in Red when their behavior has been less than stellar and at risk of landing them on the “Naughty” list. Elvis, with his jolly yet unassuming smirk, listens intently while the kids read their letters seeking approval and an inkling of hope that Santa will forgive their shenanigans. No one has received coal in their stocking… Yet. No pressure, kids. Not only is Santa watching, he has sent the elf brigade too. Finally, reading our favorite Christmas stories around the fire together is another tradition. We have a basket of books that we take out each year and put by the fireplace and we read them throughout the season. It sounds very Norman Rockwell, I know. Not to worry, there is plenty of arguing about

which book we will read, who gets to sit where, who gets to read and why can’t we put more wood on the fire. And when we are done with the story? Why, another family tradition! The kids each get to eat the day’s chocolate from their Advent Calendar that Aunt Lani gives to them each year. Decorating the Christmas tree is one of my favorite traditions because each year I present each of our children with an ornament that represents something meaningful they did during the year. Whether it was their sport, their first lost tooth, or an achievement, they have an ornament to remember what was important to them that year. We also collect ornaments from all of our travels and I love watching our family’s faces light up with memories as they uncover each ornament. This always leads to more great conversations about the travels and more memories. It is always a wonderful time

full of chatter and laughter! Another tradition that is stickier than the kids’ faces afterwards is fondue on Christmas Eve. My husband and I love fondue and seeing our babies get chocolate all over them while dipping fruit, marshmallows and other yummy treats is just too much fun. Our five-year-old daughter has renamed it “fun-do.” It is a fun way to spend time together and now the kids are old enough to help prepare the food for dipping. We have so many more traditions woven into the fabric of our family holiday. I know not all will stand the test of time. However, some are here to stay and I know my kids will be telling my grandchildren on their way over to my house someday that we have been doing this every year since they can remember. Traditions help define the culture of the family. This is what family is about.

MyMurrietaMag.com |

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Student of the Month ////////

E

ach month, a senior from each of the high schools in Murrieta is recognized for their hard work and dedication, at the Chamber of Commerce Student of the Month program. Local dignitaries, business owners, high school principals, proud parents, and others gather to listen to their stories. Those who attend, are moved by these amazing, young people. We share their pains and their victories; we celebrate their accomplishments; cry with them for their struggles; and rejoice in their ability to overcome. These are our kids. Murrieta’s kids.

PeoPLe Are LiKe diAMonds. some are still in the rough, Looking like a dull piece of glass, Feeling like a dull piece of glass, Believing they are nothing special, unaware that with some

photos BLINKit Photography - BLINKitPhotography.smugmug.com linkitphotography.smugmug.com by:by bphotos

Focused attention, they would uncover their true value! oak Grove Center AsHLey KeistLer

Murrieta Valley High MiA-KyLA CoroneL

some have developed one facet of themselves. that one area really shows through, And they feel great! they shine! others have realized

Calvary Murrieta Christian High LAndon CoLLoM

Vista Murrieta High AAron rutH

they have many facets, And they work to develop Multiple parts of themselves, Polishing each surface, until there is so much light, Bouncing off of all those facets,

river springs Charter school KyLie CAnALes

Murrieta Mesa High dustin netHerCutt

These students have chosen to put time and effort into developing their minds, bodies, and souls. They shine on multiple facets: academics, performing arts, athletics, leadership, community involvement, etc. But the key component is character. They are unbelievable. They are our future.

in every direction, that not only do they feel great, everyone around them is lit up By the brilliance of their light!

For more information, or to sponsor this program, contact Margaret Jones, Chair. (951) 677-4856. MyMurrietaMag.com |

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//////// Community Corner

A Generous Gift

working on a second-degree black belt and drives over 100 miles to Murrieta to work with her instructor. She hopes to be on the Olympic team for 2018 and perhaps own her own martial arts school someday. Congrats to Melanie and Giordano Martial Arts!

Murrieta’s 1st Rod Run

A Booming Success!

Just like the packages under a tree, giving comes in all different shapes and sizes. This season, three local businesses, have really gotten into the holiday spirit. Jimmy Bird of Bird Family Tire and Auto; Harold Deem of Rock Star Used Cars; and Autozone of Temecula teamed up to make a difference in a local families life. They purchased a 2002 Chevy S-10 Blazer and put in a brand new engine and making all other necessary repairs. They worked with several local non-profits to screen for families with no transportation. The recipient will presented with the vehicle on December 14th. The donors are hoping that this gift will be a step towards a better future for the family who receives it. In this busy season, it’s refreshing to find business owners who have the true spirit of giving.

Martial Arts Master

Twelve-year old, Melanie Diaz, a student at Giordano's Martial Arts in Murrieta, CA, has been involved with Tae Kwon Do for only three and a half years, yet incredibly she already holds 13 State Championship Titles, two District Titles, and now a World Championship Title! She is currently a black belt and 28

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Preliminary totals show Murrieta’s first Rod Run event raised over $37,000 for the Murrieta Boys & Girls Club. Remodeling on the current building is expected to begin immediately. Crowd estimates were 10,000 for the Friday night cruise, and 35,000 for Saturday’s car show. The organizers are exultant with the turn out and the support of the community. Equally as impressive were the community volunteers & nearby business owners who showed up to help prepare on Thursday afternoon. Historic Downtown Murrieta welcomed 350 classic cars to the show. Two hundred more entrants were turned away after all of the available spots were filled. Rod Run t-shirts ran out by 1pm Saturday. More t-shirts were ordered and are now available for purchase at The Mill restaurant. Thanks to Pat Vesey, Dave Lella, Drifter’s Car Club, and Maryann Edwards of the Boys & Girls Club Southwest County, who came together to organize the event.

11th Annual Veterans Day Parade

Nearly 12,000 spectators and participants flocked to Historic Downtown Murrieta to join in celebration of our veterans. Hundreds of people waved flags and wore red, white and blue to show their support of our


Community //////// Corner service men and women. With approximately 100 participants in the parade, it was a stirring event for those in attendance. In addition the Field of Honor, presented by Rotary Club of Murrieta in partnership with the city, featured over 2000 flags in an inspiring display. The exhibition of flags is something to behold while driving by, but can rouse a mixture of emotion, gratitude, and respect when time is taken to walk through the display.

Annual Angel Tree Christmas Party

Community Outreach Ministry is adopting 200+ needy children for the 13th Annual Angel Tree Christmas Party. To meet the need in the community, they will be hosting two parties. Middle and High school student volunteers will be on hand to help make the party fun and entertaining by engaging with face painting and crafts.

The first will be held on Sunday, December 15, from 12:30 PM. - 3:00 PM. at the Elks Lodge #2591, 33700 Mission Trail, Wildomar, CA 92595. The second party will be held on Saturday, December 21, from 2:30 PM. - 4:30 PM. at the Murrieta Public Library, 8 Town Square, Murrieta, CA 92562. Children will be able to interact with firefighters, police, sheriff officers, CHP agents, Custom Border Patrol agents and explorers. Each public service group will teach the children the importance of safety. The children will receive Christmas gifts, which are made possible by local business and community sponsors. All are welcome to join in and help give the gift of joy at this year’s annual Angel Tree Christmas parties. If you would like to sponsor gifts or volunteer, please contact us at 951.698.7650 or info@communityoutreachministry.org. Tax-deductible receipts are provided.

Certified Residential Specialists

The Southwest Riverside County Association of REALTORS® recognized the following REALTOR® members at their weekly MLS Marketing meeting for earning their Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) designation: Forrest Greenwood of Temecula Realty, Mike Mason of Mason Real Estate, Marti Scott of Temecula Realty Certified Residential Specialist is the highest professional designation awarded to residential REALTORS®. Only 3 percent of the estimated 1.35 million REALTORS® in the nation (National Association of REALTORS®) are Certified Residential Specialists. “We commend these REALTORS for receiving this prestigious designation,” said Diane Stumpp, Member Services/Marketing for SRCAR®. MyMurrietaMag.com |

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Upcoming

Activities!

H Star Party Tuesday, January 7, 6 PM All Ages Star light, star bright, what cool things we’ll see tonight! Explore the night sky with the Temecula Valley Astronomers. Fun for the whole family. Personal telescopes welcome.

Murrieta Public Library 24700 Adams Ave Murrieta, CA 92562 (951) 304-2665 www.murrieta.org/services/lib

DECEMBER:

JANUARY:

Mother Goose & Me Wednesdays, December 11 10:15 & 11 AM Birth to Age 3 with Parent An on-the-lap storytime designed to introduce small children and their parents to storytelling.

Mother Goose & Me Wednesdays, January 8, 15, 22, & 29 10:15 & 11 AM Birth to Age 3 with Parent An on-the-lap storytime designed to introduce small children and their parents to storytelling. Wee Wigglers Storytime Wednesdays, January 8, 15, 22, & 29 10:10 AM Ages 3-5 An independent group activity designed to introduce preschool age children to storytelling.

Wee Wigglers Storytime Wednesdays, December 11 10:10 AM Ages 3-5 An independent group activity designed to introduce preschool age children to storytelling.

Library ////////

Preschool Bootcamp Tuesday, January 7 10:30 AM Ages 3-6 Have fun with your preschooler while helping them develop gross and fine motor skills, a sense of rhythm and following directions.

PSAT Practice Test Saturday, January 18 1 – 4 PM Grades 9 – 11 A fully proctored practice PSAT will show students what to expect on test day. Students will receive a comprehensive analysis of their performance on the test. Register online at www.kaptest.com/college. Space is limited to 44 participants. California Native Plants Thursday, January 16 3:30 PM Adults Master Gardener Laura Simpson of the Riverside County Master Gardeners will talk about a wide variety of drought resistant, California native plants to create a water-smart and beautiful garden. PSAT Workshop Tuesday, January 28 6 - 7 PM, Grades 9 – 11 & Parents The format and content of the test are explored, including ways to maximize efficiency on the exam and score higher. Students who took the PSAT Practice Test on January 18 will receive their test scores.

Holiday Makeup Tips Saturday, December 7 1:30 PM Adults Professional image consultant Lauri Morris will demonstrate cosmetic tips and color use that are perfect for travel and the holiday season. MyMurrietaMag.com |

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PRSRT STD PRST STD ECRPoSTAge WSS U.S. PAID U.S. POSTAGE mURRIeTA, CA PAID PeRmIT No.236 EDDM RETAIL

Mymurrieta dec2013  

My Murrieta Magazine is a positive community magazine that focuses on the amazing people, places, and businesses that make our city feel lik...

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