Sorbet - a SoCal Senior Publication August 2022

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A SoCal Senior Publication


Six Splendid Days in the City of Light Page



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PRINT WORKS! ASK THESE LOCAL BUSINESS OWNERS ... MICAH MEIRING Doheny Bike • Advertising Partner since 2020 We struck gold when we started advertising with Community Publications. We know exactly when the publications arrive in mailboxes because our phones ring off the hook and we are slammed with new business. We are extremely pleased with the response!

JEFF MCCABE One Way Painting • Serving all of Orange County • Advertising Partner since 2011 “Our participation in the magazines produced by Community Publications has been a great asset and a complete success in terms of our marketing efforts and return on our investment. My office staff report that the feedback from potential clients has been very positive. Customers are so pleased that the guy on the cover is the same gentleman who shows up to meet with them. Call volumes have increased in the cities the magazines cover. Participating in South County Magazine and Sorbet - a SoCal Senior Publication has been such a positive experience! We are grateful and look forward to working with Jody and her team again in the future.”


Morena Tile and Stone • Advertising Partner since 2017 Advertising with Community Publications has been a total win! The response we have gotten with a full page ad and cover features has been outstanding. Our goal was to let people know we are here and where they could find us, and the results have been more than we could have hoped for. Customers are continually bringing in the magazine saying “Wow, I did not know you guys were here, so glad we found you, your store is amazing with such great selections.” Jody is a pleasure to work with and her team does a fantastic job with our crazy cat ad ideas. A big thanks to Jody and her team for all their hard work and dedication to keeping it local!

For Advertising Info, call Jody (714) 469-3495

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Absolutely Fabulous

“From our family to yours…” beams Diane Silverstein as she offers me a coffee when I walk through the doors of Absolutely Fabulous Unique Gifts & Décor right as they opened at 10am on a quiet Tuesday.


nd that’s what it feels like when you step into “Ab Fab” - like you are surrounded by family.

The night before opening on Black Friday, 2006, Diane’s husband and son were up until 4:30 AM, entering inventory into the computer. Now, 16 years and over 20 national and international awards later, Ab Fab is still bringing unique and special gifts, décor & home accents to the Huntington Beach community.

“My managers are locals who’ve been here for over 10 years and my newer hires are also locals who I hope will be here just as long.” When asked what the secret to thriving while other gift shops are dying, Diane does not pause: “… people trust us. “We have tons of fun researching the best of the best for our customers and are very excited to help them find amazing gifts and d cor things you ust won t find on an internet search. “From birth to death and everything in-between…” is Diane’s moniker “… from religious to rude, too!”

Owner Diane Silverstein 6

This dedication and love for her job was ust recognized twice in the last few months with Ab Fab’s most recent awards - both for being the “top home accents store on the west coast” (named by the Dallas Market Center) and a “retail star” by Home


Accents today - the leading publication in the Home Accents industry. “As a celebration, we have leaned into our home accents and home goods recently” Diane gladly explains. “I have also bought some absolutely fabulous picnic supplies. Aren’t we all ready for a summer of freedom?” She asks while looking up wistfully. “You see, the summer before the pandemic, Ab Fab had a horrendous ood that shut us for months. We are so ready to go out with friends this year. This is our summer.” Let me tell you… these picnic baskets are unreal: traditional wicker, complete with plates, hand blown glasses, stainless steel utensils and stylish adornments a real throwback to times past. “I am ready for some concerts in the park. Can’t forget the bubbly, though!” Oh! By the way, if you’re a fan of the bubbly, the free coffee becomes free bubbly in the afternoons… just saying… it’s pretty fabulous. See why Absolutely Fabulous keeps racking up awards by visiting them at 6026 Warner Avenue in Huntington Beach or visit them on Facebook @AbFabHB - I bet one of your friends is a fan!

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Are You Retiring Within the Next 5 Years? What to focus on as the transition approaches

Provided by Ken Earwood

You can prepare for the transition years in advance. In doing so, you may be better equipped to manage anything unexpected that may come your way.


ow much monthly income will you need? Unfortunately, there is no “magic” number for everyone to strive for. Instead, examine your monthly expenses, considering any trips, adventures, or pursuits you have in mind for the near term. As a test, you can even try living on your projected monthly income for 2-3 months prior to retiring.

Should you downsize or relocate? Your home is not only a significant asset, it also represents a significant part of your lifestyle. fter all, our homes are often a re ection of who we are. It follows that the decision of how much home we want—or need—may vary with each situation; it is not strictly a financial decision. owever, if you are considering downsizing or relocating, the financial component of the decision should be considered thoughtfully. How should your portfolio be constructed? For many retirees, the top priority is generating consistent income. With that in mind, your financial professional can ad ust your portfolio with respect to your time horizon, risk tolerance, and goals. For example, some retirees prefer to maintain an amount of risk-averse investments that can provide income during retirement. owever, even the most risk-averse investments aren’t immune to risk entirely. How will you live? Whether you dream of endless Saturdays or dedicating your time to volunteering, remember that retirement is a beginning. Ask yourself what you would like to begin doing now. Think about how to structure your days to pursue that goal, and give it a shot! There’s no better way to prepare for what may come, than to practice in the present. 8

How will you take care of yourself? If you retire before age 65, Medicare may not be an option. If you’re considering early retirement, check if your group health plan e tends certain benefits into retirement. Even if you retire at 65 or later, Medicare may not be your ideal solution. Consider items Medicare doesn’t traditionally cover, such as extended care or other specialized medical services. Review your retirement strategy as the transition approaches. ive your financial professional a call today. n adjustment or two before retirement may be all you need for a successful next chapter. Ken Earwood may be reached at (800) 250-3029, or visit Securities offered through Parkland Securities, LLC, member FINRA/SIPC. Titan Financial is independent of Parkland Securities, LLC. This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note - investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment. Investments seeking to achieve higher rate of return also involve a higher degree of risk.




Jason Cellars, DDS:

Graduate of The Dawson Academy. Unlike most dentists, Jason Cellars, DDS practices the Concept of Complete Dentistry, which emphasizes a comprehensive, individualized approach to a patient’s dental care, beginning with prevention and early intervention.

Our goal is to build lifetime relationships with our patients and the community!

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The Value of Cold Therapy and Compression Wraps in Healing By Pamela S. Mangen, MSN, MBA, RN, PHN, PCCN-CMC, LSSG

Cold therapy (also known as cryotherapy) with compression can be an extremely effective way to improve pain and swelling while reducing recovery times in the home following surgery or injury.


rom ancient times to modern day, cryotherapy has been proven to aid in healing by exposing part or all of your body to cold temperatures for a short period of time. Applying the cold to the injured areas reduces blood ow to the treated area. educing blood ow to in ured areas helps to reduce in ammation, nerve activity, and swelling which in turn relieves pain in muscles, joints and tendons. Cold therapy can be as simple as using an ice gel pack or more advanced cold therapy device.

Cryotherapy has been helping to improve the human condition for thousands of years since Hippocrates of ancient Greece. Compression improves blood ow and can lessen pain and swelling so that the heart doesn t work as hard. Taking these concepts a step further, cryo-compression combines cryotherapy and static or intermittent compression through the use of wraps, bandages, compression socks, stockings, or boots to apply pressure to move the blood more effectively so that the injured area receives more oxygen-rich blood to promote healing. tudies have shown that utilizing a combination of cold and compression therapy together (rather than just

one of those therapies alone allows patients to e perience significantly faster recoveries, which can be particularly beneficial for in home care. he many benefits of cold and compression therapy include decreased pain, swelling and edema during post-surgical rehabilitation or recovery after injuries such as sprains, fractures, and tears. In the event of a sprain or pulled muscle, use the RICE METHOD; that is, get plenty of Rest, Ice the area, then apply Wrap (Compression) it and raise (Elevate) it up. Over the years, cold therapy and cryo-compression have evolved to allow caregivers to provide an increased level of patient care with the addition of advanced products and modalities, including cryo compression wraps. hese products are particularly useful in the home setting, where it has been proven that patients are not only more comfortable, but recover faster. Pamela is President of Transition Care Telemetry, Inc., both a Home Health Agency & Hospice Agency. If you have any questions about cryocompression therapy, you can write

If you have any other health concerns, you are free to call one of our registered nurses anytime at: (833) TCT-HEAL. 10

“Our only regret is that our loved one didn’t move in earlier.” Teresa, loved one of a Serra Sol resident When Teresa needed a memory care community for her loved one, Serra Sol Memory Care in San Juan Capistrano was her choice. “The caregivers were attentive and kind and the leadership team was helpful, accommodating and assisted us with short notice. The community was clean without being sterile, and the meals were delicious. We were even able to bring in our golden retriever for visits!”

Discover what makes Serra Sol Memory Care unique. Schedule a tour today.


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Highly Custom, Exceptional Quality By Jody Robinson

In Southern California, our backyards and patio are often viewed as an extension of our entertainment spaces - a place for hosting parties, lounging by the pool or in the case of one of our family’s favorite pastimes, dining al fresco.


ecause so much time is spent outdoors, many folks I know invest as much on their patio furniture as they do in appointing their interiors. he problem is that over time the weather can be particularly hard on the metal and fabrics with constant e posure to the sun, salt air and in the case of homes closer to the ocean, even sand. With four generations of patio furniture repair and refinishing e perience, C atio specializes in restoring e isting furniture and updating colors styles for a far more cost effective alternative to purchasing an entirely new set. C s services range from custom tailored outdoor cushions, sling fabric replacement, and vinyl strapping

replacement and vinyl lacing/weaving replacement to powder coat refinishing and commercial repair and restoration. Clients can choose from a large selection of metal finishes, fabrics and color schemes, including hundreds of colors and fabrics for slings, straps and cushions for a coordinated, polished result. “C atio is an incredible company to work with from beginning to end,” says ibby, a recent happy customer. “ ach person I spoke with was e tremely knowledgeable and helpful. heir service was fantastic. ick up and delivery was on time, and the furniture was very carefully handled. ur chairs, lounges and tables look like new, and I am sure they will last for many years to come. I highly recommend them.” nother client, agrees with ibby s assessment and adds “I was so impressed with your prompt and professional service. I felt your pricing was very fair and actually surprising low. I highly recommend your store and staff. irst class in every respect.”

wners rian ee and his son Collin and their team offer pick up and delivery so the process couldn t be more convenient. hey ll strip the old, dull finish by sandblasting and pre treating your set in preparation for the powder coating application available in an array of colors and finishes including high low gloss, metallic, te tured or clear , which is then baked in an industrial oven to cure to a beautiful, long lasting final finish. ew straps or sling materials are then installed and voila brand new look feel for a fraction of the cost and hassle of removing your old set and purchasing a new one. “What sets us apart from others in the industry is our attention to detail and a true passion for the industry,” says rian, a ana oint resident. “If you re interested in an estimate, it couldn t be easier ... simply send photographs of your patio furniture via email or call us directly. our furniture was intended to last for decades and so is our work. hat s why we offer a three year real warranty on all of our services.”

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Tips to reducing the discomfort and risks associated with prolonged inactivity: • Wear comfortable clothing • rink plenty of uids avoid alcohol) • Stand up and stretch several times during travel • Wear gradient compression legwear to anyone during travel, regardless of age, weight or lifestyle. JOBST™ medical compression stockings and socks are a simple and comfortable way to help avoid heavy, tired and achy legs and the swelling of feet and ankles.

Travel Can Be Tough on Your Legs

Unlike the products available at your local drugstore, JOBST™ medical compression stockings and socks are recommended by physicians for their clinically proven gradient compression benefit. edical compression products reduce swelling and helps prevent the pooling of uid in the venous or lymph systems. The stylish cotton blend dress socks and compression hose available today increase tissue pressure to help balance the ow of uid across the capillaries of the limb.

Medical compression stockings and socks are a travel essential By Livia De Los Rios


any people travel long distances and have to remain seated for two or three hours or even longer. They might not think much of it, but when movement is constrained, the blood circulation in the legs is restricted. This can contribute to heavy legs, leg pain and swollen feet and ankles. Prolonged sitting is also a major risk factor for the development of phlebitis and Deep-vein Thrombosis (DVT). Deep-vein Thrombosis involves the formation of blood clots (thrombi) in the deep leg veins during prolonged inactivity. In some cases, blood clots 14

can migrate to the lungs resulting in a pulmonary embolism. When seated without moving for a few hours – whether by plane, train or automobile - the risk of DVT could be four times higher and can happen

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Outside SCR

Returns to Mission San Juan Capistrano with South Coast Repertory’s Production of

Million Dollar Quartet


(714) 369-2377

through Aug. 21st


ission San Juan Capistrano and South Coast Repertory announce the return of Outside SCR at Mission San Juan Capistrano this summer through Aug. 21st. This year’s production of Million Dollar Quartet, book by Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux, original concept and direction by Mutrux, chronicles a momentous day in December 1956 when Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis played a jam session for the ages. Directed by Broadway veteran James Moye, Million Dollar Quartet is the sole Outside SCR production in this second summer of partnering with the historic Mission San Juan Capistrano. Ticket prices range from $25 to $42, with special pricing for those age 25 and under. Single tickets may be purchased online at or by phone at (714) 709-5555. 15


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towers out of blocks, connecting pieces together, or using play dough. As children practice this type of play into elementary school, their creations become progressively more complex. Construction play can be done alone, or with others – which encourages collaboration and problem solving.

PHYSICAL PLAY - Like exploratory play, physical play

begins in babyhood and plays an important role in motor development and health. s they learn to use their bodies in more complex ways, they begin to play through running, climbing, jumping or engaging in “tumbling” activities. rom there, physical play leads to games with rules, like tag or organized sports.


Game On Five Unique Benefits to Different Types of Play in Your Child’s Development “Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning.” - Mr. Rogers, television personality Children naturally play for fun, yet during play they’re also building and practicing skills, creating and strengthening relationships, exploring and processing emotions, and so much more. ere, we ll shine a light on five types of play, based on the work of child development researchers. ach one has its own uni ue value, and most importantly, all five types of play are interconnected.


PLAY his is a child s first e perience with play, when they do things like grab objects (or food!), touch them, squeeze them, put them in their mouths, drop them, or bang them together. hey re developing fine motor skills and eye-hand coordination, while also learning about object characteristics and processing sensory information such as te ture, temperature, scent, and avor. ensory play continues into preschool age and beyond.

CONSTRUCTION PLAY - Once children learn how to manipulate ob ects during e ploratory play, they can move on to using objects to build and create. For toddlers and preschoolers, this might be progressively building taller 18

Imaginative play emerges when toddlers are about 18-months-old, alongside the cognitive milestone of symbolic thinking. lso known as pretend play, it develops through several stages from toddlerhood to elementary school. From pretending a block is a phone, to inventing increasingly dynamic imaginary storylines and acting them out using props, costumes, or sometimes nothing at all! uni ue and important aspect of imaginative play is that children use it to understand their emotional world. As an e ample, you might observe a toddler putting a stuffed animal on a potty chair while they themselves are potty training. r an older child and a sibling might act out driving a car from their own observations and e periences.

GAMES WITH RULES round age five, after having plenty of practice with other types of play, children begin to play games with rules (card games, board games or sports . ames with rules are critical for developing countless life skills, including following directions, collaborating, strategizing, self-regulating, and using resilience after a loss or failure. lementary aged children, when given the opportunity, will invent their own games with rules, which both re ects and further develops e ecutive function skills – which are central to planning, organizing, and executing a goal. he most important thing to remember is that every type of play nurtures a child s development, and also supports the development of more sophisticated types of play. or example, object play helps children manage tools during constructive play. egular physical play helps children feel confident playing sports or other active games. he planning and problem solving involved in imaginative play helps children feel engaged and challenged as they learn and grow. With just a few materials and plenty of opportunities, it’s easy to encourage all types of play! If you are interested in learning more about Stratford School, or scheduling a personalized tour, visit us online at

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Training the Heart and Soul at South Coast Conservatory BY JODY ROBINSON


n the 1960’s, a man named Roger W. Sperry developed a theory: that the human brain goes about thinking in two very different ways. Having worked in the field of psychobiology for years, he’d noticed that one side of the brain saw the big picture - processing information in an intuitive and simultaneous fashion. The other, putting sequential pieces together like a puzzle, parts making a whole. We all use both sides of the brain complementing logic with creativity. But ask any dancer, writer, sculptor, or painter and they’ll tell you they’re “right brained.” Controlling three-dimensional spatial reasoning, creativity, and artistic ability, right brain dominance certainly has given us some of the world’s greatest art forms. And South Coast Conservatory is finding more and more ways to celebrate it. Founded in 1992, the Conservatory is heading into its 30th year of operation. Specializing in individual and group dance in classical, contemporary and commercial, they provide programs for kids from age 2-18. Programs to help children grow, programs that train “the heart and soul of every dancer,” says Director + CEO Jena Minnick-Bull. South Coast Conservatory offers eight separate programs, from PreAcademy to Competitive Dance Teams, a certified acro/aerial arts gym and a dance supplies store. 20

“We start kids in our ‘Pre-Academy’ program to introduce them to a range of dance styles, such as ballet, tap, jazz, tumbling, hip hop, and song and dance,” says Jena. “Once they grow into the ‘Academy’ program, they receive a more in depth training, also beginning to learn contemporary, break dancing, pilates, lyrical, acting, and pointe.” With one-fifth of South Coast’s kids joining the competitive level of dance, their

program structure is set perfectly to grow with them: accelerated training with elite coaches in either its “Ballet Conservatory” division, or the “Elite Academy” - prepping kids for the commercial world of dance. It isn’t just for kids either: Christina Portillo has been attending the Conservancy for over ten years as an adult, “engaging in various dance styles, performing with the Ballet Conservatory, and even competing with the adult hip hop team: Moms Crew.” Linking up the left and right brains is an automatic function of the body - synthesizing even to the smallest degree what we are seeing out of our left and right eyes, and putting the picture together as a whole. Because each student learns differently, South Coast has set up a compassionate and individualized teaching philosophy. “We take the time to understand and aid the goals of our students.” And dance, really, isn’t just about processing information intuitively,

Director + CEO Jena Minnick-Bull

as most might think. The analysis of sequential movements, for example: choreography. A projected kinetic trajectory on an angled plane: leaping. Symmetry, patterning, geometry group theory and permutations. Left brain and right brain working together to create beauty, community, and create a passion for learning that will persist for years beyond any single dance class. Parents learn about passion alongside their children too. Adriana Escobar notes that she loves South Coast Conservatory because it introduced her daughter to such a passion: musical theater. “[The Conservatory] provided her with the place and people she needed to take a chance to dance, sing, and then to act. Today, it’s her passion and she is comfortable on any stage.” Roger Sperry went on to be awarded the Nobel Prize in 1981 for his work in psychobiology - and certainly, while South Coast is preparing kids for a lifetime of creative, rightbrained pursuits, Jena notes that “all of our graduates go on to pursue many diverse degrees and careers using the lifelong skills our school provided them.”


(949) 545-7091



South Coast Conservatory 27652 Camino Capistrano Laguna Niguel (949) 367-0099

Explore Art in an Environment FULL OF FUN! 21

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Cefali & Cefali, APC Trusted Accident Attorneys for the Most Serious Injuries By Jody Robinson

It’s a remarkable feeling when you can find someone to take your side. In relationships, sports: you name it. That one person who believes in you, makes you better, fights alongside you.


ichael Cefali matched with his person (his wife Courtney) long before law school - but their partnership extended through the long years studying for the bar and paid off in an even match that has stacked up in their favor many times over. Graduates of Chapman Law and California Western, respectively, they started the San Juan Capistrano-based Cefali & Cefali, APC in uly of and have been fighting for the little guy ever since. From setting clients up with top-tier doctors and specialists, to negotiating stellar settlements, Cefali & Cefali, APC handles cases from start to finish with client health as their top priority.

it was very apparent that he cared about me and my case! He and his team are so HONEST and FAIR and

it was clear from start to finish that he had my best interest in mind! Not only is he a good lawyer but he is a

Focusing on all aspects of personal injury, the Cefalis are what you might expect in such a ring: passionate, aggressive, and most importantly, honest - all traits that have contributed to the couple having recovered millions of dollars per year on behalf of their clients since opening their firm. “The insurance companies would like you to think that they get to determine the value of your injuries, your suffering,” says ichael. “We ll fight for every last penny because we know that you deserve it.” Clients appreciate the work that the Cefalis do. In fact, as of the date of this publication, you won t find a single negative review of their firm anywhere on the internet. Client Jamie shares, “I am so grateful for everything that Mike Cefali and his team did for me! Not only was he able to help me get what I was owed in my settlement and then some, but he was so responsive and kind and 24

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good person which made a world of difference for me. I could not have asked for a better experience with a personal injury attorney! I have already recommended him to all of my friends and I will continue to recommended him to anyone looking for a good lawyer! Thank you so much Cefali and Cefali!” Another client Carrie echoes Jamie’s sentiment, “My husband and I were rear-ended on the freeway. We felt bad thinking of contacting a lawyer, but after several months of continuous pain and medical treatments, a friend recommended Michael Cefali. From the beginning, he lived up to his core values of integrity, loyalty, and vigorous advocacy. Michael is a dedicated, friendly, and competent attorney who seamlessly represented our interests and ensured the outcome was in our favor. He treated us not like a client, but like family; he was there any time we needed him. He was empathetic to our situation and worked tirelessly with all parties to represent us. We don’t trust many people, but we trust Michael and his team and would highly recommend him to anyone seeking a professional, effective, and focused attorney.” With five staff members to back up the stellar work ichael and Courtney produce, the couple remain incredibly hands on, based on a culture of empathy, integrity and advocacy. “We craft each case personally, build each one for trial, and remain accessible to clients,” says Michael. “Personal injury attorneys get a bad rap when really we’re the good guys. I like to think of our firm as a pirate ship. imble, clever, and tenacious in spite of being outspent by the adversary, we pry money from greedy insurance companies and give it to our very deserving clients.” iving back is the spirit of the firm, and community work creates a direct link between Michael, Courtney, and their circle in San Juan Capistrano. The couple and their team proudly supports a number of local charitable and community organizations including: The Boys and Girls Club of Capistrano Valley (Courtney is on the Board of Directors), The San Juan Capistrano Friends of the Library (Courtney is also a board member , C , the acific arine ammal Foundation, and Project Coyote. Michael is a member of the San Juan Capistrano Rotary Club and has been recognized as a Paul Harris Fellow. The Cefali team’s ethics, constant communication (every client is given Michael’s personal cell phone for easy accessibility), commitment to their clients and involvement in the community keeps everyone growing stronger and healthier together. Remarkable isn’t it, that feeling when someone takes your side? Cefali & Cefali, APC (877) 423-3254

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By Jody Robinson

One of the perks of my job as a magazine editor is being able to interview entrepreneurs in a wide variety of industries - an opportunity for a bit of education on businesses I might not otherwise have had exposure to.


n today's market, I've read my share of articles about the importance of hedging against in ation, but it wasn't until I chatted with Ali Soltani, owner of the Dana Point-based Royal Gold Group that I learned about options and benefits in investing in gold and silver. It doesn't hurt that Ali waxes poetic about all kinds of currency like he was Nicholas Cage’s National Treasure character talking about the George Washington campaign buttons. Before I met him, the concept of investing in coins and precious metals seemed as fantastic as someone attempting to steal the Declaration of Independence. The more I learned though, its ties to true financial finesse are difficult to ignore. Following in his father's footsteps, Ali has been a personal collector of coins and currency since he was a child and it's clear that educating clients or the lay public in general about currency is absolutely a passion for him. Much more than a hobby, Ali makes it a specialty rather than a

simple customer service transaction. or the last five years, oyal old Group has been operating in South Orange County. Part of the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce, Royal Gold originally started as a small shop in Old Town Tustin and has recently expanded to Dana Point in a much larger space. But why coins? Why currency? “It isn’t about the formal business for us," says Ali. "I didn’t want to have just another old dirty coin shop. I enjoy the blend of customer service and sales in this specific arena - educating my customers and exchanging knowledge with seasoned collectors.” Ali and his team at the Royal Gold Group cater to investors of all ages and abilities. If you are a novice investor, they can create an offering based on your specific goals. re you looking to collect for pleasure, buy and sell for quick profit, or buy and sell for a long-term investment?

Owner Ali Soltani

Offering private appointments for those clients who might need a little more time or privacy to look at products, “or go over valuable estate items they are looking to sell," jewelry repair, and coin appraisals mean less time out on the market, liquidating the responsibility for a single customer to travel distance for multiple appointments. Easily booked over the phone and offered free of charge, private appointments take the pressure off for clients who need extra time to catch up in a clean, wellorganized, stress-free and accessible environment. “Coins and bullion are not for just a specific type of collector or investor anymore," says Ali. "We see patrons ranging in age from 6 to 76 years old: parents with their kiddos, seasoned collectors who have been in the marketplace for a generation. We welcome all.” Royal Gold Group 34291 Doheny Park Road ne t to the post office Dana Point oyal old



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to Kyle Warner, co-owner of Your Home Care Inc. about what they do and the benefits of home care services.

Because Home is Where the Heart is


or the majority of seniors living in California, quality of life equates to living at home. A recent AARP survey reports that 77 percent of seniors want to remain in their home for the long term.

Often times in order to keep seniors living at home in comfort and safety, services and help are needed. Many seniors have opted for home care services when they need help and want to remain at home.

The advantages of aging in place are numerous. As we age we want to maintain the highest degree of independence possible. Our home is familiar and comforting to us, it’s where we feel safe.

As the senior population increases, so has the home care industry. We spoke

Throughout the pandemic we have seen our homes become a safe-haven, a place where we can heal and stay healthy. Our home is filled with memories and it’s what we’ve created over the years with our loved-ones. 28

Question: Tell us a little bit about Your Home Care and what it is that you do. Answer: At Your Home Care, our mission is to enrich the quality of life for seniors by providing compassionate caregiving services at home. The agency was created in 2003 and is family owned and operated. Our agency is licensed, insured and bonded, all our amazing caregivers are vetted, trained and background checked. We service most areas of Orange County, CA with a concentration in Laguna Woods and the surrounding cities. And we also work seamlessly with all Long-Term Care Insurance plans. Q: What is the biggest gift or or blessing that you see while providing care for seniors? A: The culture we have created here at Your Home Care is that of kindness and compassion. The most important

thing we can offer families is that we honor the people we are entrusted to care for. It is indeed a blessing to see our services make a positive impact in people’s lives. It is humbling to know that we get to provide a vital service that enriches and prolongs people’s lives. Q: How many hours does a typical home care client start with? A: The hours vary based on the needs of the client. Some clients like to start with a four-hour, or a six-hour shift. Others know they will need more care than that and schedule full days. We try to be as accommodating as possible to meet the scheduling needs of our clients. We work with many clients coming home from the hospital, or skilled nursing facility and they require 24 hour care as they rehab and regain their strength.

Companionship and social engagement is another key aspect of caregiving. Some of our seniors feel isolated and lonely, so a caregiver becomes a friend to talk to and their bond is lasting.

Another important aspect of scheduling is establishing consistency and dependability for the families we serve. We work hard to have the same caregivers work with our clients whenever possible in order to build rapport and strong relationships.

Seniors with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or Dementia can benefit greatly from a caregiver because they are experienced in working with people with cognitive impairments. They are trained on the techniques used to manage behavior, keeping them safe and well supervised.

Q: Tell us about the staff at Your Home Care. A: Employees and clients say they appreciate working with us because they get to deal directly with the owners. They like working with the decision makers because it tends to make things run more smoothly and the process is more streamlined. Owners Segal Ronen and Kyle Warner oversee everything from client acquisition, employee operations to office administration. But the real magic behind what we do is the talented, experienced team of caregivers we have the pleasure of working alongside. Our team is filled with special people and it’s apparent they genuinely love what they do and have “a calling” for this work. They are service-minded, kind people, who love to care for seniors as though they are family.

Q: What makes Your home care stand out above the other home care agencies? A: The senior home care industry is growing and changing. The trend we are seeing is an increase in rates, add-on fees and lengthy minimum hour requirements. At Your Home Care we don’t have lengthy minimum hour requirements, nor do we up-charge. We make every effort to be as accommodating and flexible as possible to meet the needs of our clients. We are responsive and available to our clients and caregivers when they need us. We act quickly to address and resolve any issue or concern. Going back to our mission…to provide compassionate home care services that enrich families’ lives… with this in mind we are always looking for ways we can exceed our clients’ expectations.

Q: What types of services does home care typically cover? A: We offer a wide range of non-medical home care services and customize a care plan for every client. These services include personal care related services such as bathing, dressing, bathroom assistance and other personal hygiene needs. We prepare meals, provide transportation and help with housekeeping duties. We help with mobility and fall prevention. We basically help with all the activities of normal daily living that seniors might need a hand with.

Your Home Care is a company with heart, we care about our clients, and we care about our employees. If you are considering home care for you or your loved one, you can call Kyle Warner directly at

(949) 424-9322 and let us show you how much we care. 29

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MARK FARNER As one of the founding members, lead singer, lead guitarist, and wrote 90% of the Grand Funk Railroad music catalog, Farner has always been known as the energetic driving force on stage, the engine that pulled the original Grand Funk Railroad to the top of the charts.


THE AIRPLANE FAMILY THE AIRPLANE FAMILY performs the 50th Anniversary of PAUL KANTNER’S Rock Music / Science Fiction masterwork ‘BLOWS AGAINST THE EMPIRE’ with original & legacy members of Jefferson Starship, Hot Tuna, Jefferson Airplane, Bob Weir’s RatDog, KBC, NRPS, David Crosby Band & Oteil Burbrige Band.


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How Can I Tell If I Have Skin Cancer? There are three main types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. Because each has many different appearances, it is important to know the early warning signs. 38


ook especially for change of any kind. Do not ignore a suspicious spot simply because it does not hurt. Skin cancers may be painless, but dangerous all the same. If you notice one or more of the warning signs, see a board certified dermatologist right away, preferably one who specializes in diseases of the skin.

WHAT PATIENTS NEED TO KNOW 1. Everyone needs to perform a self-skin exam once a month.


An actinic keratosis (AK) is a crusty, scaly growth caused by damage from exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. An AK is considered a precancer because if left alone, it could develop into a skin cancer. AKs are the product of a lifetime accumulation of UV damage and typically appear on areas most commonly exposed sun, such as the backs of the hands, forearms, face, neck, and scalp.


Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most frequently occurring form of all cancers, with more than 4 million cases of diagnosed in the U.S. each year. BCCs may look like open sores, red patches, pink growths, shiny bumps, or scars. Any skin lesion that doesn’t heal, or bleeds with even gentle trauma, such as drying with a towel, is concerning for a BCC.

2. Melanoma can appear anywhere on the skin, including the palms/soles, under your nails, and places...for most, have never seen the light of day (genitalia). For this reason, it is important to look everywhere. Lock the bathroom door, get out a hand mirror, and check, it could save your life. 3. What to look for: ABCDEs, and an ugly duckling A - Asymmetry: If I draw a line down the middle, do the sides match? B - Border: Is there a nice crisp border, or does the mole melt into the surrounding skin? C - Color: Moles should be one color, one shade of brown. Is there a variety of shades or additional colors, such as black, red, white, or blue? D - Diameter: Any mole larger than 6mm, ie the head of a pencil eraser, has a higher risk of becoming melanoma.


Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is an uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells arising in the epidermis, the skin’s outermost layer. SCCs often look like scaly red patches, crusty bumps, warts, or elevated growths with a central depression. SCCs may appear suddenly and some forms are tender to touch. They can become disfiguring and sometimes deadly if allowed to grow. More than 1 million cases of SCC are diagnosed each year in the U.S., which translates to about 115 cases diagnosed every hour. Incidence has increased by 200 percent in the past three decades in the U.S., and more than 15,000 Americans die each year from this type of skin cancer.


Melanoma is a very dangerous form of skin cancer. Melanoma is caused mainly by intense, occasional UV exposure (frequently leading to sunburn), especially in those who are genetically predisposed to the disease. An estimated 178,560 cases of melanoma are diagnosed in the U.S. each year and is fatal for an estimated 9,320 of these patients. Fortunately, if melanoma is recognized and treated early, it is almost always curable.

E - Evolution: Has it changed? F - The Ugly Duckling Sign: Most people have a “signature mole,” their own personal mole appearance and architecture. Is there a mole that seems different from all the others? 4. Everyone needs a full body skin exam by a board-certified dermatologist once a year, more frequently if you have a family history of skin cancer, a personal history of skin cancer, or live in an area with substantial sunshine. 39

s y a D d i Six Splend f o y t i C e in th Light

By Jody Robinson

My 14-year-old daughter has long been obsessed with all things French - its food (crepes, baguettes, macarons), fashion and the idea of one day experiencing these “for real” in the City of Light. While we’ve traveled extensively within the borders of our own country endeavoring to visit all 50 states as a family by the time our now 15-year-old son graduates high school, we’ve ventured abroad too few times for her (or my) liking. This summer we made a concerted effort to remedy that with an unforgettable family sojourn across the pond. While flying for upwards of ten straight hours with a pair of teens in tow might not sound like much fun, Paris is one of the most family friendly places to travel. Look beyond Disneyland (though that’s a great option, particularly for fami40

lies with littles) - think scenic river cruises along the Seine, more gorgeous gardens and verdant green spaces than you can shake a stick at, picturesque outdoor cafes and crepe stands around every corner and rife with both iconic and little-known landmarks rich in history and reflective of Paris’ vibrant art and cultural influences - past and present.


I’d been to Paris as a single woman in my late 20s and spent the better part of a week wandering the City of Light; known so for being the first city in Europe to light its streets with gas lamps; I must have averaged 12 miles on my feet per day. Absolutely torturing my toes to ensure I saw every square inch of every arrondissement, I promised myself if I ever went back, I’d try to be less intimidated by the metro system and even indulge in other modes of public transportation.

Green Riv

er Cruise


Arc de Triomphe

This time around, swimming around online to put together ideas for our itinerary, I happily discovered Big Bus Tours ( Offered in cities all over Europe, Central Asia, America, and the Middle East, their hop-on, hop-off tours give you a front row view of the sights you want to see, for a fraction of the footsteps. We used our ticket for our first day of adventuring, which proved to the perfect way to get the lay of the land, learn a bit of history/background on each of the 10 “stops” along the route and determine which were “must-see” destinations for the coming days.

Choose between a classic ticket, which offers a single day with 10 top landmarks, pre-recorded commentary, and a flexible ticket, or upgrade to a Premium or Deluxe ticket - with all the basics plus an additional day of touring and option for a river cruise as well. Incredibly priced, you can choose to hop off at a particular sight to explore a bit more, or stay on the bus the entire time to snap crystal clear photos from the open top deck for the duration of the 2.5 hour ride. Whichever way you want, the Champs Elysees, Louvre, Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and more are waiting for you. Save your feet for an easy stroll along the Seine at night.


Cirque Bo rmann Moreno

Isak Dinesen was famously misquoted as a man for her line from “Seven Gothic Tales,” in which a seaman tells his son “the cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea.” Though the Seine, when it travels through Paris like a great wet artery, contains less salinity than the Atlantic, its ability to soothe is unmatched. Green River Cruises ( offers comfortable, luxurious private river tours for two to twelve guests per pontoon boat. Customizable boats provide a relaxing environment for a sunset aperitif, a romantic dinner for two, a fun 41

team-building experience or in the case of our family, an unforgettable experience of the city “in a different light” as we leisurely cruised past several of the city’s most iconic landmarks while our “captain” shared a bit of history and inside info from a local’s perspective. With four electric boats in its fleet, Green River Cruises is dedicated to providing the most respectful experience for its guests and the planet alike. Sipping chardonnay as you tour one of the most enchanting cities in the world, you’ll see the evolution of Paris from its medieval heritage to the modern mecca it is today. Choose from a one, one-and-a-half, or a two-hour cruise and celebrate any special occasion or just a gorgeous day or evening on the water.


I have a personal rule when traveling abroad - no chain restaurants. Especially American ones. I stand by this for a couple of reasons - to experience the city and its newness, but also that as I’ve followed the advice of locals over the years, I’ve enjoyed better food, better wine, and better sightseeing experiences in general. After all, we know what we like where we live so the local perspective can make all the difference between vacationing like a tourist or experiencing the environs more akin to a native. Hidden Paris Tours ( exists solely to give its guests the most unique and intimate view of Paris there is. Our guide, company co-founder Delphine and her partners have already done all the legwork over the years ... roaming the city in search of delicious cuisine and incredible locales with which to share the colorful history and beauty of their fair city. Choose from a private, group or customized tour, whether your interest is in fine art, gourmet food or haute couture fashion. We chose to explore the neighborhood of Montmartre and indulged in stories only a local like Delphine knows to share. In addition to witnessing firsthand the postcard perfect landmarks we all associate with Paris, we discovered charming neighborhoods away from the typical tourist destinations, meandered down romantic side streets, viewed the studio spaces that were once home to some of the world’s most fa-


rs Hidden Paris Tou

mous artists, painters, singers, dancers of years past. From Versailles, museums, and monuments, to the world’s most famous cemetery (Pere Lechaise), experience Paris as though you were born a local and grew up with curiosity as a companion.


One doesn’t necessarily travel to another country hoping to hear about widespread public health problems, especially these days. But deep underground the romantic streets of Paris lie another tale to be told, one you don’t want to miss. In the late 18th century, Parisian officials began to worry about the impact above-ground cemeteries were having on the population of the city. Following the first evacuations of the Saints-Innocents cemetery, which had been in use for nearly ten centuries, the tombs, graves, and charnel house were emptied of their bones, and transported nearly five stories underground to abandoned quarry wells, and stacked high by workers through the night. Tours began in 1809, and have continued ever since. Welcoming nearly 550,000 visitors annually, the Paris Catacombs ( are an artistic contemplation on introspection, and a meditation on death itself. The ossuary was carefully organized by Inspector Hericart de Thury, and boast a monumental approach, much like that of the Egyptian pyramids and their masonry monuments. Tours last roughly an hour, and if you were worried about balancing a bit of exercise on your tour de cheese while in Paris, you’ll certainly work off the morning’s baguette with 131 steps

into the depths, and 112 steps back up into the sun. Grab a timed ticket, your sweetheart or history-loving counterpart, and drop back a couple of centuries this vacation.


Who doesn’t love a good circus? Cirque Bormann Moreno ( is a lively throwback to an earlier era when circuses were held in a traditional big top and the performers loved interacting directly with the public. The current “A Journey Through Time” themed show performed in French - travels from the prehistoric era to ancient Egypt, Africa, the roaring 20s and modern day Paris. It was such a treat to experience this cirque de la belle Epoque - this seven-generation family of performers work together to entertain audiences of all ages with three weekly shows (Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays) featuring acrobats, trapeze artists, jugglers, clowns and an array of im-

Paris Catacombs pressively trained animals including a quartet of magnificent horses. Before each performance, there is free access to “initiation and animation” workshops where the visitors are afforded a “behind the scenes” experience - the younger attendees especially love this artist-supervised aspect.


By Jody Robinson couple of years of a pandemic, I’m certain anything that makes life a little easier is a wonderful respite. One of those things is an easily bookable flight, where you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg for nonstop travel from Los Angeles to Paris with the family. French bee ( makes that possible.

A New Way of Flying Nonstop

Los Angeles to Paris


fter the past few years of waiting to again take to the skies, our family was thrilled to learn that France has lifted Covid restrictions for those flying into the country 44

and lifted mask mandates for those who have their feet on the ground. While many moms like me find that their patience is better these days after having struggled through the past

Founded in 2016, the low-cost longhaul airline is revolutionizing international flights with a fleet of Airbus A350s wide-body aircraft optimized for long flights. One hundred percent flexible tickets (and rail options to make traveling in country that much easier) to tailor your fare and flight experience any way you want it. Basic, Smart or Premium, you pay only for what you’re interested in. Get the lowest price you want, add a few extras, or go for the full package for maximum comfort and amenity. When booking travel, I find there’s often a bit of translating to do: what exactly is a la carte (there are more

than 20 add-on options)? What is economy, or premium? French bee defines it all. If you’re looking for nonstop travel at the best possible rate, French bee offers two classes of economy (with one-way fares starting at only $326): Basic and Smart. Basic is the most economical option that comes with one 26-lb. carry-on included, while Smart includes the carry-on, one 50-lb checked bag and an inflight meal. Either of these economy options come with leather seats, adjustable headrests, USB and electrical ports (to keep all your devices charged throughout the entire flight) and what French bee bills as “unlimited entertainment.” I personally found the latter to be true ... I have a hard time sleeping on flights so I thoroughly enjoyed binge-watching a series of movies - new releases and older favorites on the individual HD touchscreen outfitted for every traveler. An upgrade to Premium (with oneway fares starting at $767) takes you a step further with even more leg room, larger seats, two premium meals, complimentary beverage service, priority boarding, line jump and priority baggage (one carry-on and two 50-lb. checked bags) to make your trip a dream. Choose from a

Standard seat, Window, or Extra Leg Room. Customize, customize, customize. Down to the Michelin chef designed meal service, French Bee is there to ensure whatever it is that you need while aboard, they’ll ensure quality, custom service. For our part, we literally experienced all three levels of service: my husband and I opted for Premium class on the outbound while the kids sat together in Smart Economy (our thought was that the little extras would make for a less-jetlagged and thereby less cranky crew at destination). My husband likes the extra leg room, so he traveled back in the Premium cabin while I sat with the kids in Basic economy. Having personally experienced both, either is a terrific option ... I’m only 5’3” so I was just as comfortable on the return and my daughter and I were able to watch shows together for a little extra quality time on the way home. Bonus! At Paris Orly Airport prior to boarding our return flight, we took full advantage of the Prime Class airport lounge - a spacious, relaxing space close to our departure gate overlooking the runways with complimentary Wi-Fi, French and international newspapers, self-service hot and cold beverages and light bites (including crepes).

DISCOVER A NEW TRAVEL EXPERIENCE WITH TAILORED FARES BASIC The lowest price for your greatest pleasure. Ideal to travel light and affordably, you travel with a carry-on only and add all the services you want. Pay for only what you are interested in. SMART French bee’s most popular ticket type fare - includes a 50lb checked bag in addition to your carry-on plus a delicious in-flight meal (with a range of options including vegetarian and fish). PREMIUM Enjoy the same as above but with faster priority boarding and jump-the-line services at the airport, a larger seat, more leg room and priority baggage - you don’t need to wait for your luggage upon landing. Indulge your inner foodie with an additional in-flight meal and complimentary beverage service, plus an additional 50lb. checked bag.


Medicare Part A & B Sign Up Periods and Pitfalls to Avoid y tephanie risch

hen you’re first eligible for edicare arts .


or example, you can sign up during the 7-month period that begins 3 months before the month that you turn 65, the month that you turn 65 and the 3 months after you turn 65. (If your birthday is the 1st of the month, your effective date for Medicare begins one month prior to your birthday month). Important to note! If you wait until the month you turn 65 (or anytime during the 3 months after you turn 65) to enroll, your Part B coverage effective date will be delayed. This could cause a gap in your coverage. Enrollment in Medicare Part A is no longer automatic because while eligibility for Medicare begins at age 65, the Social Security “fully vested” retirement age is no longer 65. Social Security and Medicare “share notes on you” for a simple explanation of why Social Security is in on the discussion of Medicare. If you’re taking Social Security early you will be automatically

edicare, you have a

month Initial nrollment eriod to sign up for

enrolled in Medicare Parts A & B and they will mail you your Medicare card a few months prior to your Medicare effective date which is always on the first day of a month.

then just going onto Medicare when you first turn . I don t recommend trying to do this without the help of a Medicare professional (like me for example).

If you have group health insurance through you or your spouse’s employer, then you are allowed to use that coverage versus going onto Medicare without any late enrollment penalty from the government as long as it’s group coverage through an employer with 20 plus employees. When you decide you want to leave that coverage (retirement or just realizing Medicare is a better option for you versus your group health plan) then you apply for Medicare using what is referred to as a “Special Election Period”. It’s more complicated to apply for Medicare this way

With the afore mentioned exception, in most cases if you don’t sign up for edicare art when you re first eligible, you’ll have to pay a late enrollment penalty. You’ll have to pay this penalty for as long as you have Part B going forward in your life. IMPORTANT FACT! If you’re eligible for Medicare, you don’t qualify for COBRA coverage without having to pay the Medicare Part B premium. You have 8 months to sign up for Part B without a penalty, whether or not you choose COBRA. If you miss this period, you’ll have to wait until the Medicare General Enrollment period which takes place Jan. 1 - March 31 to sign up for Medicare Part B, and your coverage will start July 1. This may cause a gap in your coverage, and you most likely will have to pay a lifetime Part B late enrollment penalty.

Stephanie Frisch is the owner of Insurance 101 and is an independent insurance broker dedicated to helping others make “educated decisions” about their insurance choices when it comes to Medicare. For answers to your questions, or no-fee consultation, call 949-292-4958. 46


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elcome to HADESTOWN where a song can change your fate. Winner of eight 2019 Tony Awards® including Best Musical and the 2020 Grammy® Award for Best Musical Theater Album, this acclaimed new show from celebrated singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and innovative director Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812) is a love story for today... and always. HADESTOWN intertwines two mythic tales — that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone — as it invites you on a hell-raising journey to the underworld and back. Mitchell’s beguiling melodies and Chavkin’s poetic imagination pit industry against nature, doubt against faith, and fear against love. Performed by a vibrant ensemble of actors, dancers and singers, HADESTOWN is a haunting and hopeful theatrical experience that grabs you and never lets go.



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New Orleans Family-Friendly Fun in the Big Easy By Jody Robinson


hen someone says “festival season” to me, the one of the first things that comes to mind is Coachella. But long before the annual music and arts festival began in Palm Desert, another season entirely captured America’s imagination: that of Louisiana’s favorite French city. With over 100 festivals year round, New Orleans is the prime destination for any type of vacation - but is especially friendly for families in the summer months. From art and music to food and drink, seasonal celebrations, tours and an abundance of attraction, there is always something to do day or night on the banks of the lower Mississippi. Stroll the vibrant French Quarter or experience a free concert in Lafayette Square. Hop aboard a streetcar or play outside in the city’s 1300-acre City Park: complete with paddle boats, a Mother Goose-themed playground and an antique carousel. From Bourbon Street to beignets, no matter what time of year, fun is always in season in NOLA. Immediately after school let out for the summer in early June, our family boarded a flight to the Crescent City armed with an itinerary that encompasses Creole cooking, 18th century historic structures, jazz music, ghost tours and cultural attractions – all part of a gumbo (pun intended) that has been simmering here for three centuries. 50

Higgins Hotel While searching online for an ideal home base, two properties stood out above the rest: The Higgins Hotel and the Loews New Orleans.


Opened just two years ago on The National WWII Museum’s campus in the Arts & Warehouse District, The Higgins Hotel ( harkens back to an earlier era. An Art Deco and period-inspired aesthetic and architectural influences are evident throughout the property – from its expansive lobby defined by a floor-to-ceiling mural looming over the reception area and a myriad of elegantly arranged WWII artifacts on display to each of its 230 spacious and well-appointed guest rooms and suites – all thoughtfully equipped with modern conveniences and special touches (think ultra-comfortable beds, stylish seating and pretty spectacular views of the cityscape).

Distinctive dining options here include Café Normandie for breakfast and lunch featuring sophisticated French-influenced fare and Rosie’s on the Roof – a local favorite for small plates, sandwiches and salads during the dinner hour. The latter paying homage to the new female American workforce of the WWII era. Rosie the Riveter is a cultural icon representing the women who worked in factories and shipyards during the war, producing munitions and war supplies.

The best part in my view? Its proximity to the neighboring National World War II Museum ( – where we could incorporate history, education and inspiration into our vacation for a particularly memorable afternoon with our teenagers in tow. Our experience was defined by immersive exhibits, soaring aircraft and personal stories from Home Front efforts to the combat encounters of the American soldier abroad. If you go, don’t miss “Beyond All Boundaries” - a moving 4D cinematic journey produced and narrated by Tom Hanks

that gave us all a greater understanding and deeper appreciation of the epic and global scale of the war that changed the world.


A Four-Diamond luxury property, Loews New Orleans (LoewsHotels. com) leans into the city’s love affair with art – starting at reception’s beautiful tiled mural and stained glass. Each of its 285 bright and spacious guest rooms and suites showcase original local artwork and iconic New Orleans images as accents. As lovely as the views are in each accommodation, the vistas to behold beyond the wall-to-wall windows of this 22-story Big Easy high-rise are even more mesmerizing – nearby New Orleans neighborhoods ablaze in color, the city skyline sparkling at night and the magnificent Mississippi River, always a storied beauty to behold. Each of the generously sized rooms are finished in modern blues, grays and pops of bright color and characterized by thoughtful décor and Southern charm. For our son who recently embarked on a regular fitness regime, 24/7 access to the fitness center’s state-of-the-art

Muriel’s Jackson Square cardio and strength equipment was a huge bonus, while the indoor lap pool, whirlpool and sauna were more my speed for a little exercise and wind down at the end of the day.


Speaking of day’s end, Bar Peters at the Loews features Cajun-inspired entrees, light bites and hand-crafted cocktails influenced by the spirit of the city. A friend recently turned me onto a super cool site ( for the “definitive guide to the world’s hidden wonders,” which is where we discovered Muriel’s. New Orleans is no stranger to paranormal activity or classic Creole cuisine so we were anxious to sample both at Muriel’s Jackson Square (

Loews Hotel

At this iconic French Quarter eatery, guests are said to dine amongst the patrons of the city’s past – there’s even a hidden séance

room on the second floor where a special table is reserved each night for the spirit of the former owner (cus51

tomers and employees have reported seeing objects moving around the room and voices emanating from the second floor when no one is there).

greens and fried catfish. My personal pick? The chicken and andouille gumbo – a hearty, rich, generously seasoned Creole stew.

It’s easy to see why this establishment is so popular – in addition to its prime location in the heart of the French Quarter, Muriel’s menu is filled with regional favorites – including seafood specialties which were right up this seafood aficionado’s alley. The New Orleans seafood gumbo, crawfish and goat cheese crepes, shrimp and grits were a delicious introduction to creole cooking.

And no trip to New Orleans would be complete without indulging in a few beignets at Café Du Monde ( – the famous fritters here are piping hot squares of doughy delight topped with con-

light and sound spectacular featuring two-story projections of the artist’s most compelling works. It is another singularly unique experience that is a both entertaining and educational family outing.

fectioner’s sugar. Café Du Monde is not-to-be-missed – this French coffee stand is open 24 hours a day and has been in operation since 1862.


For Cajun Southern Cooking, we experienced Cochon ( for authentic, traditional dishes custom crafted from locally sourced pork, fresh produce and seafood. Set in a rustic, yet contemporary interior of a renovated New Orleans warehouse, the menu is characterized by a bevy of unique starters and main courses that make a meal here a truly memorable experience for the senses. I’m particularly proud of our teens, both of whom have in recent years stretched their culinary palates. But none so much as on this trip where they had an opportunity to try crawfish pie, fried alligator with chili garlic mayonnaise, roasted pork belly with pepper jelly, bacon braised collard 52

Beignets at Cafe Du Monde

The city’s only 360-degree observatory, Vue Orleans ( offers unparalleled views of this storied city in literally every direction you look – from the entire length of historic canal street to the way in which the Mighty Mississippi winds its way through NOLA. We ascended the 34 floors in less than 60 seconds – then had a ball challenging the kids to locate the landmarks from the previous days’ excursion.

New Orleans is considered to be “the most haunted city in America” so no visit here would be complete without getting a little scare on. The Ghosts of New Orleans ( is the No. 1 tour for families and children, but is also great for history buffs and fans of the paranormal. This all-ages walking tour takes you to some of the most famous haunted locations in the French Quarter, including sites of grisly murders and crimes where the victims are said to haunt the living today and homes of famous residents whose ghosts still walk the halls of their past lives (it’s no coincidence that the tour starts right across the street from Muriel’s, whose previous owner committed suicide on the second floor (in the area that once served as the slave

If you’ve ever dreamed of stepping into a painting and are a fan of post-impressionVan Gogh New Orleans: The Immersive Experience ism, don’t miss Van Gogh New Orleans: The Immersive Experience ( Ranked quarters and is now home to the hisamong the 12 best immersive experitoric structure’s Séance Lounges) after ences in the world by CNN, this tourlosing his beloved home in a game of ing exhibit is a 20,000-square-foot cards in 1814.

Mission Viejo Wigs:

Where Customers are “Family”


received many compliments on her “new do” and no one was the wiser. It’s been over nine years since my mother completed treatment and is now leading a cancer-free life. Although her own hair has long since grown back, she still often prefers to wear Betty’s wigs on “bad hair days.” Thank you Betty!

by Jody robinson

ission Viejo Wigs is truly a family business. Not in the traditional sense, where its owners and operators share the same genes. But rather in such a way that every person who has walked through Owner Betty Darroch’s doors in the 30+ years she has been in operation immediately felt like a member of Darroch’s extended family.

As a professional hair and wig stylist since 1962, Betty began her career at CBS where her résumé reads like a celebrity screenplay starring the coifs of a veritable “who’s who” of Hollywood: Ann Margaret, Carol Lawrence, the Midnight Specials and the Sonny & Cher Show. She went on to work for the Hallelujah Hollywood Show at the MGM Hotel in Las Vegas. But it wasn’t until she opened her own business in Mission Viejo that she felt as though she were “truly doing God’s work.” Her clients today include people who are experiencing hair loss due to chemotherapy treatment, alopecia or other medical conditions. Betty specializes in wigs, hairpieces and toupees for women, men and children and carries only the highest quality brands. Each wig or hairpiece is custom fit to the client for the most natural look and feel – no one will know you’re wearing a wig unless you tell them. “Hair loss, whether it is the result of illness, the aging process or heredity, can be a traumatic and emotionally draining experience,” says Betty. “We work with people on a daily basis who are facing the issue of hair loss for the first time. Our goal is to help you find the solution that works best for you and do so in a caring way that makes you realize that you are not alone.” There are wonderful testimonials from longtime customers on her web site (missionviejowigs. com), but for me, the best testament to Betty’s genuine, caring nature came from a source closer to home. When my mother was diagnosed with lung cancer six years ago, there were so many aspects of what she was facing - including the side effects associated wit chemotherapy treatment – that were out of our control. But my mother’s appearance was something she felt she could dictate. We knew she would lose her hair, but she was determined not to “look like a sick person.” From the moment my mother met Betty, she knew she had found the right place and more importantly, the right person to help her. Betty shared so many stories of survival – of longtime customers and friends who fought a similar battle and won. Her warm embrace and inspired hope and help steel her resolve to maintain a positive, fighting attitude when she was diagnosed with lung cancer. The wig Betty selected was the perfect color and style for my mother’s face (and head) shape. The wig was so natural looking that my mother

You can connect with Betty by calling (949) 581-4549. Mission Viejo Wigs is located at 25571 Jeronimo Road in Mission Viejo. 53

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oxy coatings can also be removed during this same process. “Despite the fact that Coatings Industry requires concrete to at least be diamond ground before installing a new coating system, many of my competitors will install their coatings right over raw or pressure washed concrete just to save a few bucks - I will never do that” says Paul.

It’s Not Epoxy, It’s SpartaFlex!


or nearly 40 years, southern California homeowners have used Epoxy for garage and industrial floor coating projects despite its tendency to yellow, it’s soft and easy to scratch surface and it’s tendency to be permanently damaged by the hot, high performance tires found on most cars in the OC area. Today OC homeowners don’t have to settle for Epoxy and all of its flaws anymore. SpartaFlex is an advanced, next generation 100% solids polyaspartic floor coating that gives your garage a beautiful finish that is 3x harder than epoxy, resists yellowing while also resisting permanent damage from hot tires. Perhaps best of all, SpartaFlex comes with a much better warranty than Epoxy. Perkins Custom Coatings has been installing SpartaFlex on OC garage floors for nearly 14 years and has completed over 9,000 floors during that period of time. Its CEO and owner, Paul Frankel is considered by many to be the most knowledgeable contractor in the local market. “Unlike many of our competitors, we strive to do an onsite assessment including a moisture test for every floor coating project we install and instead of using the ‘one size fits all’ approach, we develop a coating solution that we believe will last for decades not just for a few years.” Perkins uses only the most advanced surface preparation methods available and will either diamond grind or shot blast every floor that he installs. Old, failing, yellowed ep-

Perkins also is known for its professional and unique approach to repairing concrete cracks. “Anyone can slap some crack repair paste to cosmetically fix a crack” says Paul. A year later, when the concrete moves again and damages their brand new floor coating, the devastated homeowner will learn that this damage is not covered by the typical Epoxy warranty. “We are the only company that I know of that uses a ‘structural crack repair’ technique to fix cracks. The process is so effective we can offer our customers a warranty that can cover future damage from cracks!” says Paul. After the surface prep is completed, a very effective moisture control primer is applied to the concrete. “This is extremely important” says Paul because for many homes built in Socal before 2005, elevated moisture vapor levels in the garage concrete can have a detrimental impact on floor coatings. Paul does a fast and non-destructive moisture test for every one of the pre-2005 homes he visits and develops a unique installation plan for each home. For newer homes, Paul and his crew can use a basic primer that dries a bit faster allowing installation of a garage floor in as little as one day! The color chips that give the Perkins floor its legendary appearance are sandwiched between this primer and finish coat. Perkins carries the widest selection of colors and sizes in the market and uses a ‘full chip broadcast’, not a partial sprinkling of chips like many of its competitors. “The full chip broadcast gives the floor a consistent appearance and makes the floor much more durable and helps hide dirt better than the partial broadcast finish” says Paul. Finally, Perkins installs the SpartaFlex polyaspartic finish coat and the finished garage comes to life. “Epoxy & SpartaFlex floor coatings are virtually identical in appearance when they are first installed” says Paul. “However, when you will really begin to appreciate a SpartaFlex floor is a few months down the road when you would typically start to see problems develop with an Epoxy floor. If there was a better material on the market, I would be selling it, but there isn’t and that is why we love selling SpartaFlex.”

For more information or to see for yourself the advantages of SpartaFlex over Epoxy, you can call Perkins Custom Coatings, at 866-330-1DAY (1329) or visit their informative website at 56


COME VISIT US! 20452 Laguna Canyon Road Laguna Beach

(949) 494-5107 57

The Proof is in the Paint with


Photography of Jeff McCabe by Lana Farfan, Caught in the Moment Photography

Ralph Waldo Emerson famously said “who you are speaks so loudly I cannot hear what you’re saying.” Keeping this quote in mind has served me well over the years, particularly in choosing friends … and when seeking out the services of professionals. In my opinion, integrity isn’t a word heard often enough in the business world. Competitive, certainly.


ut unfortunately phrases like “bottom-line oriented,” “unscrupulous,” even “cutthroat” have cropped up in the vernacular when hearing home improvement gone wrong stories from fellow homeowners. That’s why it was so refreshing to come across Jeff McCabe and his Orange County-based One Way Painting. In business since 1976, Jeff and his team serve all of the OC and specialize in interior and exterior residential and commercial painting. They swear by the rules of professionalism: “no cutting corners. No cheap materials. We pay attention to every detail, and never call a job complete until the customer is completely satisfied.” Some might call it good Christian values. Others might say it’s simply good


business. But for the last 42 years, working from the heart has earned One Way Painting such a respected reputation in the industry that the vast majority of their work comes through repeat customers or referrals from repeat customers. The company’s success isn’t merely rooted in customer service though. Boasting a superior knowledge of available product on the market and hiring the most professional crews in the business also goes a long way. “Our reputation speaks for itself; but if it didn’t, we have satisfied employees on our permanent payroll who would put a hand up in

defense of the standards we set,” says Jeff. Standards which were born and bred through a commitment to ethical business practices and hard work. In 2001, Jeff teamed up with seasoned professional Ron Bartz as a journeyman, then took over the company when Ron retired, and has been growing it ever since. In 2009, Jeff took the pair of threeman crews and expanded the operation to encompass six crews, two office staff, and a pro ect manager who oversees jobs, right alongside the man with the plan himself. “We currently have four trucks on the road and I’d like a full eet someday. I d like to leave a legacy for my daughters, and that means more than just cans of paint and a warehouse full of equipment and materials.” To Jeff, it means taking care of his employees, taking care of his family: taking care of business. The hope is that One Way Painting becomes a household name, for its quality of work and quality of values.

My husband and I can happily attest to both. When we moved into our home in an uan Capistrano five years ago, we acquired quotes for exterior painting from several contractors, but were particularly impressed with Jeff and his crew. Prior to starting work at our home, Jeff came by in person to go over what the job would entail and answered all of our questions. His team showed up right on time the first day and each subsequent day - and at the end of each day everything was cleaned up before they left.

process and followed up immediately upon completion of the job to ensure that we were satisfied with the results and our overall experience of working with One Way Painting). Their attention to detail is found from start to finish. or e terior pro ects, they begin by power washing to clean and remove any loose paint, mildew or mold. Then the patching: with stucco, trenching around the foundations and priming with an acrylic. They’ll treat your wood siding, eaves, fascia,

windows. Main doors, garage doors, trim. Even wrought iron, or other specialty surfaces like patio covers and fences. Most work depends on the client’s preference: at to semi gloss, acrylic or oil finish. Inside walls see at, matte, eggshell, satin, semi, or hi-gloss. If you have natural wood cabinets and they need refinishing, One Way’s crew will see to it that they look new again. Also licensed and bonded as commercial painters, Jeff’s crew has been making businesses and their buildings look new again for 42 years. With a free on-site estimate, your custom needs are sure to have a custom solution. No deposits required, and “no surprises along the way,” Jeff is quick to add. “I think at the end of the day what sets us apart is taking our time with each and every customer that comes our way,” says Jeff. “We run a business like every person we interact with is family.” They may not be the cheapest out there, but then that wouldn t y in merson s eyes, and not in Jeff’s either. “Our business is based on the Christian ethic of treating every customer with honesty and integrity. Every job is done ‘as unto the Lord.’ Does this mean we’re perfect? No. It does mean that we strive to do the best painting job possible.”

“We pride ourselves on working with a team of long-term employees - we do not hire off the street,” says Jeff. “We guarantee our work and do not require payment till the job is completed and the customer is completely pleased with our work.” Jeff and his crew delivered on these promises and more than exceeded our expectations - the result was outstanding work, a job completed on time and on budget and defined by unparalleled customer service (Kelly in his office was hyper responsive to our inquiries during the estimating

Connect with Jeff, Kelly and the One Way Painting team by calling (866) 986-9781, visit or YELP for reviews. 59

Why Repipe when you can


Lead-Free, Leak-Free Pipe Protection By Jody Robinson

It is safe to say that I know nothing about pipes. I know a little about drywall, and some about framing; my husband has his general contractor’s license so I’ve picked up a few nuggets of knowledge over the years - albeit in conversation, not in practice.


ipes, however, are a complete mystery. I have family who live on the East Coast, where pipes seem to burst with some degree of frequency in the winter, but that is the extent of my experience via six degrees of separation. Since our family moved into our “new” home in San Juan Capistrano a few years ago, we have since become something of an expert on experts: those who do and don’t know anything about pipes. There are a bunch of things I can now catch you up on: leaks, sprinkler lines, lead testing. But truly, all you need to know is this: In many cases, ePIPE can have your pipes restored the same day without displacing you from your home. Topping my list of folks I’d call expert, ePIPE has been in business since 1999. With over 40 international and US-based patents, the company has contracts with the US Department of Defense, several counties across the States, schools, HOA’s, and thousands of individual homeowners nationwide. Jason Houck, National Sales Director notes “twenty years ago this process was developed to be more convenient, less destructive, longer lasting, and healthier. Now it’s a patented, proven process used around the globe.” Traditional systems wreak havoc on a home, tearing up oors, walls, and ceilings. To get to the pipe, you have to get everything else out of the way: and then to replace the pipe, you have to remove what is there. “Instead of re-piping, we restore pipes in place. Many homes can be completed in a day, with the water going back on in a number of hours.” 60

ool piping, fire sprinkler systems, water lines - ePIPE deals with it all. They’ll even test for lead and remediate as a LeadSmart® Service provider. Any number of factors can lead to corrosion in a system, often in as little as two years after installation. Any number of factors can lead to pinhole or slab leaks. So what happens next? If your pipes were simply failing due to changing water chemistry, perhaps you’re wondering if there is a better pipe? Turns out the restoration of your pressurized system can be as simple as drying, cleaning and applying ePIPE's patented epoxy coating. “The cleaning process prepares the internal pipe surface for proper bonding,” says Jason. “A bit like sanding before you paint.” In researching what ePIPE has to offer in terms of the process, I don’t see the word drilling, or destruction, or demolition anywhere. Taking care of

a problem once it begins is one thing, but ensuring that you won’t have that problem for years down the road is entirely different. Restored piping protects against corroding and pitting, in turn reducing copper and lead leaching. “Because there is no need to destroy walls, ceilings, or oors, you save a significant amount of money in reconstruction costs,” says Jason. “I’ll keep saying it: we do the work without the mess and expense.” Ranked in the top 1% of over 300,000 California contractors, ePIPE is here to ensure your pipes deliver the way they were made to. That’s really all I need to know.

To connect with Jason and his team, call (866) 567-5106 or visit

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he stepped in with a solution. “Usually people think they just have to be replaced, but that isn’t the case! We have a ton of e perience with all kinds of doors, no matter how old, what material, or what brand.”

Performance & Professionalism:

Dr. Slide-Door By Jody Robinson

It’s a new year. I, along with everyone I know, made resolutions: mostly hoping that this year would be better than the last, but some that genuinely re ected an optimistic mindset. aid mindset led my husband and I to craft one that hadn t topped our previous lists: fi broken things.


ike most everyone we know, our family has spent considerably more time at home these past months - and knocking around the house all day, we've made a priority

of a dizzying array of home improvement projects - both indoors and out - that we'd previously deferred. Turns out, we're not alone. A common refrain among our friend group? Countless home appliances to be replaced. Garden and landscaping projects to embark on. And a rather surprising number of sliding glass doors in need of repair in our collective Southern California homes. Enter Shy Hadan. Known as Dr. SlideDoor, Shy's father was in the business of selling sliding doors, but when he saw that there was no one to fi them,


If hauling open your sliding door requires Herculean strength, it’s likely you re e periencing rollers with dirt and dust buildup so they don’t roll the way they used to. Over the years, it’s common for the rollers to wear to the point that you may actually be dragging the entire weight of the sliding door across the track, which causes even more damage and drag every time you do it. Whether your door is modern or ancient, made of aluminum, vinyl or wood … all you have to do to “remedy your rolling troubles” is schedule a free inspection. A tech will come out to see if the components can be fi ed or replaced, and it. With over years of industry e perience, Dr. Slide-Door is the number one chosen sliding glass door repair service in Southern California. What sets them apart? Each member of Dr. Slide Door’s team arrives with everything you’ll need on site. “Your sliding door professional will replace the parts right down to the rollers, leaving your door feeling weightless and good as new. You’ll be amazed at how easily your door slides open and closed.” With parts made in Germany, you can be assured that your “new” door could last another 20 years: plenty of time to tackle out the rest of your resolutions. Dr. Slide-Door (888) 881-2007

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