Monday, October 19, 2015

Eat Your Bananas!!

Did you know you should eat the PEELS of a banana - people in other countries have been taking advantage of the nutrition in bananas for decades
You can bake them, fry them or boil them!
Banana peels have:
   12% of your daily fiber
   17% of your Vitamin C
   20% of your Vitamin B-6
   12% of your potassium
   17% if your magnesium.
For much more information and recipes go to

Monday, July 20, 2015


Mike and I have worked hard all our lives.  I have a degree in Business Administration and have run numerous businesses - from Electronic Assembly to House Cleaning and now my Husband's Flooring Business.  

In 2008 had some physical problems that left me unable to work - bad timing!  I had to declare bankruptcy and transfer one of my businesses to my husband.  Then came the economic 'downturn' and our troubles - we sold our house and closed all the businesses and reinvented ourselves at another location.  

However consumer spending is still slow.
A little over 60 days ago we were given a notice to leave our current location because the house was being sold.  It was - in 2 days!  We have been driving, applying, looking, contacting friends, contacting social services - but so far with no success because of our past problems.  Social Services gave us a list of homeless shelters!

I have discovered there are resources for the disabled under 66, for veterans, for families and for children, but not for seniors.  Senior housing has years long lists and although we could move far away it would make driving impossible for me - I have neuropathy in my legs and a stick shift!  The state of California designates me as disabled, but there isn't anything available for SENIORS that are disabled. We pass into an unwanted void when we start collecting Social Security.

When I am finally relocated God willing, I am going to use my skills as a writer to make people aware of what is going on in our country with the elderly population.  People like me, who grew up in an upper middle class city, went to collage, got married, had a family and worked, worked worked - to the extent that I was probably a 'workaholic' at some point.  

At 69 I still write a newsletter and run my husband's flooring business.

We are told if we had $20,000 in the bank we could qualify for housing.  This is my last desparate attempt to be heard and maybe help from GoFundMe can become part of my story. That is my wish!  

I hope someone out there helps our family rise above this challenge!

Sunday, December 21, 2014


Apparently the landlords don't realize that people are buying things to eat and window shopping -  not spending money on expensive items.  

These long - time Stores will be Missed!

1.  Family Ts - Howard - 30 years on Balboa Island.  Whenever and wherever I wear one of his t-shirts or Hoodies I get complimented!  Over and over.  They were great looking, funny, salient, and true to the nature of Balboa Island!  Howard was the last of many t-shirt entrepreneurs on Balboa Island.  Now the t-shirts are generic corporate types!

2.  Martha's Bookstore.  
     Here is my article from the Coastal Breeze -
     This fall we have seen tremendous changes on Balboa Island’s Marine Avenue.  Howard, 5Cs, Ornate, Shanghai Pine Garden are all gone.  And Martha’s Bookstore!  Many were Island Fixtures—but Martha’s was the one that resonated the most with me. 

Years  ago Kathy and Stephanie lived in Brea and Fullerton and came to Newport  to walk on the beach every weekend.  They loved the water and the sunshine!  Together they decided to open a Bookstore on Balboa Island, but they could not find a location.  Instead  they worked with Bob Teller and got a booth at the Orange County Fairgrounds selling books.  Kathy continued her job as a graphic designer and Stephanie worked hers at Delta Airlines

Muralist Holly Wojan occupied the space that was to become Martha's Bookstore.  Holly decided to take another avenue in her life—leaving the store vacant except for the beautiful murals she had painted on the walls of the store. You can still see remnants of Holly’s work on the walls of Martha’s.—f lowers and patterns that made an eclectic background for the books, cards and gifts.

Kathy and Stephanie opened Martha’s Bookstore on July 28, 1989.  Using the wire racks they had from the swap meet, their books, some cards and little else.  Kathy had three children—Sara, her youngest,  who is now an engineer—was only 3!

Named after Kathy and Stephanie’s mother—Martha’s Bookstore is the place like home on Balboa Island. When you walk in the door you are immediately offered wine or tea.  There are always treats to nibble on while you shop. And book recommendations.  Often the latest ‘book club’ book.  Many a friendship has been forged as the result of their book club!

Martha’s  has always been the spot to buy everything from the latest Bestsellers to harder to find inspirational books.  There has been a parade of local authors signing books on weekends.  Everyone from Mark Victor Hansen to T. Jefferson Parker.

I  remember the ’salad days’ for Kathy and Stephanie—when Beanie Babies were the rage.  Kathy placed an order for 10 dozen without telling Stephanie.  She was afraid they would not sell, but when she took them to a local school—they did!  And sell, and sell and sell!

 The Beanies allowed Steph to quit her job at Delta and for Kathy to move to a larger apartment and send Sara to St. Margaret’s private school in San Clemente for 7th and 8th grade.  It was there Sara discovered she was a genius at Math.  Kathy says, “This was life changing for Sara.  It came at a time when her study habits were forming and her classes there created a solid platform for the rest of her life.”

I asked Kathy what she planned to do when she left Martha’s—travel, row with her Rowing Club 4-5 days a week, continue the book club, read and indulge her passion in theatre arts.  “I don’t know if I ever went to classes when I was in college ,” she admitted, “I was always in the theatre.” Or singing—Kathy loves to sing!  I’ll bet there will be a lot of music and fun in their future!

3.   Beach Time Realty

When I moved to Balboa Island in 1990, Dottie and her son Terry Lewis owned Beach Time Realty.  They had started Beach Time in 1980 and had multiple rentals on Balboa Island, I had a cleaning service - we were a match made in heaven!  I cleaned their units for many summers and in between tenants. At that time there were a lot of winter rentals to students - so between summer and winter was a big clean-up!   I really enjoyed the work and the people!

Glenn, Dottie's husband, was the handyman who did all the repairs on their properties.  He was always running around between properties on his golf cart with tools and a ladder.  And always smiling!

Eventually Dottie retired and her daughter Anne and Anne's husband Bob inherited the business.  
We will miss Beach Time - but the landmark clock where their office was will always be there to remind us of these wonderful people - and to tell us what time it is!

4.  Even Sisters

 A fabulous independent, creative store - has been there for more years than I have.  Started by sisters Helen and Katie - born in the 'Even' years.  The cow was an Island favorite - always dressed for the season!   And marching along in our yearly parade in June!
They are mooooving their store online - but the bricks and mortar will be gone by January 11, 2015!!

4. Candlessence
Overhead or Grandkids….. ??
In the end it was an easy decision for us :)   Neil and I will be closing our Balboa Island store after the holiday season this year and moving closer to the family in San Diego County where it all started.
Don’t fret though, as our candles will still be available on Balboa Island at Laura Matthews Designs at 322 Marine Ave. We will keep the island stocked with all your favorites and seasonal choices as well as continue to take custom orders on the website.
Our candles will also be available for shipment on the website or by phone so feel free to call us. You will also still be able to see what candles are coming out of the molds, and undoubtedly some photos and videos of Oliver on our facebook page, so if you haven’t already, follow us to stay connected at
We will also be branching out to expand our corporate gift, custom labeling and wholesale services, so if you know a business that would benefit, please refer them to our website at  
Wishing you and yours the very best !
Neil, Stacey and Oliver

5.  Sculptures of Balboa - Great Gift Items - Inexpensive Creative, Souvenirs that represented the Island as it has been - not as it is becoming!  
And though the items were inexpensive - they were not 'cheap'! Something we don't find very often!

Other Stores - not so Long Term - That disappeared recently - Ornade, 5Cs

AND A FINAL SAD FAREWELL TO SHANGHAI PINE GARDEN - Gone but not forgotten are your individual pots of tea, your crunchy tid-bits with awesome sauce and your reasonable prices.  
None to be found at the new incarnation!!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Soda Will Kill You - Sooner Than You Think

Los Angeles Times 11-7-2014
In celebration of the victory in Berkeley of the 'soda tax' I am posting this timely information.  Loved the article in which they interviewed the representative from the Beverage Association.  He said, "Berkeley is low hanging fruit."  Especially in light of the 'dubious regulations' that have emanated from that city.

Which regulations - oh, non-smoking sections in restaurants and curb cuts for wheel chairs.  Nope, their ideas never catch on!

Here is more fuel for that fire:

Bad news if you’re a soda drinker: according to a new study, downing just eight ounces of the bubbly stuff per day can age your cells by nearly an additional two years.
Researchers are the University of California San Francisco analyzed data from 5,309 adults by looking at numbers from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Specifically, researchers wanted to check the correlation between drinking soda and telomere length—which is the cap on every chromosome in the body, associated with shorter lifespan, higher stress, heart disease, diabetes and certain forms of cancer, among other issues. The researchers found drinking just eight ounces of soda a day increased cell age by 1.9 years. Drinking 20 ounces increased cell age by 4.6 years—which is the same aging effect smoking has on your telomeres.
Interestingly enough, the link between soda and cell aging only seems to exist for sugary, regular variety—not diet. “The extremely high dose of sugar that we can put into our body within seconds by drinking sugared beverages is uniquely toxic to metabolism,” says study author Elissa Epel, PhD, professor of psychiatry at the University of California San Francisco. Interestingly, there’s no link between cell aging and sugary fruit juices either. For now, soda seems to be the main culprit affecting our telomeres in the beverage department.
Luckily, soda drinking has been on the decline since the researchers pulled these numbers from the survey nearly 14 years ago. And while telomeres normally and naturally shorten with age, past studies have shown you can actual help grow your damaged telomeres up to 10 percent by eating a healthy diet (without sugary soda) and cutting stress from your life. So if you’re still popping the top on regular Pepsis and Sprites, it’s time to settle on a new drink of choice.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

HALLOWEEN, THIS FRIDAY,OCTOBER 31st, 8:00 pm to 11:30 pm
THE RICK SHERMAN DUO (Rick and Alan Remington)
Giving another "Monster Performance" at 
127 Marine Avenue, Balboa Island, 92662  (949) 675-8300Join us back at our old haunt for a fun night of Halloween revelry, with the ever-popular ANNUAL V.I. COSTUME CONTEST!!!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Artificial Sweeteners Disrupt Body's Blood Sugar Controls

Last week I had a conversation with a friend who said after she drinks her tea with artificial sweeteners her appetite becomes ravenous.

It probably is time given what is happening with GMO's, Antibiotics and other substances created by man - that we step back and start looking at plant-based solutions like the bioidentical hormones I have been taking for the last 30 years with no adverse effects.

This article also emphasizes how the American system - at almost all levels - is being held hostage by 'big food' and other large corporate entities.  They don't care about side effects or if a chemical will harm us - as long as it makes money for the bottom line.

I am hearing more and more about how far behind our country is in so many areas.  We are becoming a third world country.  A depository of harmful chemicals and hateful ideas.  Come on - let's become the country of the individual again!!

This article was published in the New York Times - for the complete article Google "Artificial Sweeteners May Disrupt Body's Blood Sugar Controls".

Artificial sweeteners may disrupt the body's ability to regulate sugar, causing metabolic changes that can be a precursor to diabetes, researchers are reporting.

That is the "very same condition that we often aim to prevent" by consuming sweeteners instead of sugar, said Dr. Eran Ellinav, an immunologist at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, at a news conference to discuss the findings.

The scientists performed a multitude of experiments, mostly on mice, to back up their assertion that the sweeteners alter the microbiome, the population of bacteria that is in the digestive system.

The different mix of microbes, the researchers content, changes the metabolism of glucose, causing levels to rise higher after eating and to decline more slowly than they would otherwise.

The findings by Dr. Elinav and his collaborators in Israel, including Eran Segal, a professor of computer science and applied mathematics at Weizmann, are being published Wednesday by the journal Nature.

Cathryn R. Nagler, a professor of pathology at the University of Chicago, who was not involved with the research, but did write an accompanying commentary in Nature, called the results "very compelling."

She noted that many conditions, including obesity and diabetes, had been linked to changes in the microbiome.  "what the study suggest," she said, " is we should step back and reassess our extensive use of artificial sweeteners."

The rest of the Article talks about the exact implementation and results of various studies which led to their conclusions.

I am not willing to take a chance - never have been - I like t he products that nature has provided for me!

And don't forget that any sweetener - like Truvia - created by a corporation is more than suspect.  Thanks to a false-advertising job well-done, many health conscious consumers have been tricked into believing that Truvia is the same thing as Stevia. The (disappointing) truth is that, despite the fact that Truvia is marketed as a “stevia-based sugar substitute,” it is NOT equivalent to Stevia. Not even close, actually. Get this: the ingredient list for Truvia is as follows: Erythritol, Rebiana and Natural Flavors. Just three ingredients and Stevia isn’t even one of them. That right there should tell us something (for starters, not to trust the product manufacturer…which by the way is Coca-Cola teamed up with a company called Cargill…)

Stick with 100% Stevia and Sugar!!

Thursday, June 19, 2014


The lease holders of the Dunes have proposed a project at PCH and the BackBay on a plot of land they own. They did an extensive PR outreach to the public. I saw it three times and originally supported the project, because it seemed like a moderate use of the space.

At a DS BOD meeting, a member asked how the project would appear when driving on PCH. We were told that such and image was not available. Before the City Council vote, I was able to get a copy of the EIR and was surprised.
1) “BAIT AND SWITCH” The images in the EIR appear massive. Not a small “landing” rather wall to wall and three stories high. The PCH images in the report are from the far side of the street and across the intersection. When you drive across the PCH bridge it will be more imposing. The upper bay and the green belt will be replaced with stucco.
2) “YOU HAVE TO PASS THE PROJECT TO FIND OUT WHAT IS IN THE PROJECT” We also had difficulties with the artist misconception drawings. They do not reflect the described project. It includes fork lift boat storage and a 65 ft tower. There are no assurances that the project will be as shown.
The STDH Pac filed suit seeking to have the environmental document accurately reflect the project. We also asked that they show the public the size of the project next to the PCH bridge with story poles. The city and developer did not agree. They used a process that would have increased our costs and would have eliminated our reserves. . Up against a unified front of Developer attorneys and City attorneys, we choose to preserve our funds.
Stop The Dunes Hotel (STDH) was founded in 2000 to ensure the lessee of the Dunes would abide to an agreed family inn. The leased Dunes property is on public tidelands designated for family use. They sought to expand the project into a large hotel and convention center. The structure would have 70’ high towers and would be funded with time shares they would build along the bay. Seems that they cannot sell public land but somehow sell timeshares.
STDH is concerned that the expanded Back Bay Landing project with and it’s 65’ tower and 49 new dwelling units with more to transfer is a stepping stone to an expanded project in our peaceful lagoon.
We have the Newport Center and the area around the airport for large structures. I hope that the people of Newport Beach recognize the beauty and value of the harbor before we turn into Huntington Beach and Marina Del Ray.