Be mindful, frugal with Thanksgiving leftovers

Now that you slaved in the kitchen for days on end to feed all your family and friends, the last thing you want to do is cook some more. You can either give away leftovers, eat them as is, or turn them into new, lighter fare to take you through the weekend, and even into Monday, as you begin your holiday shopping. I love finding creative ways... Read more →

Can’t you hear the lilacs?

To be an artist is to be an outsider. A loner. A person overwhelmed by his passions. And more than a little insane. That’s the premise of Stacy Sims’ play “As White As O,” now having its world premiere at the Road Theatre in North Hollywood. In sympathy and fascination we watch as a group of artists, swamped by their... Read more →

Fine night for a fine wine

One of the great marketing successes in the world has been the creation of anticipation of the Beaujolais nouveau each year for hundreds of thousands of people around the world. The past few vintages were not so great. But I just had the recent vintage at a special dinner offered at La Cachette, and this vintage was superb! This vintage had... Read more →

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Dear New Shrink, For the last few years, I have been suffering from chronic stomachaches, heartburn and acid reflux. My doctor says he believes these symptoms are all related to my stress level. I will admit I am somewhat of a worrier. There isn’t anything unbearable or tragic going on in my life right now but I do constantly find... Read more →

Efron comes of age in ‘Me and Orson Welles’

When I tell you the feel-good, comedic, coming of age flick for the holiday season takes place in New York during the 1930s you might incredulously think, “Yeah, right.” So brace yourself for this next revelation — it also involves William Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” as envisioned by iconic American... Read more →

Creating a new tradition to be thankful for

It almost seems too easy to have this column be about Thanksgiving. But it also seems so appropriate, being that it is only two days away. Since Thanksgiving is a time to take stock and be thankful for those around you, and since motherhood is a daily experience of stock-taking, I figured I had no choice but to get a little sappy, perhaps... Read more →

Never too young to give back

We will be spending a lot of time this weekend stuffing ourselves with turkey and paying lipservice to the concept of “giving thanks.” This year we decided to find ways to really show how thankful we are to live in a place like Santa Monica. Just handing over a check to a charity doesn’t hold much meaning for a 4 year old.... Read more →

Once a cheerleader, always a cheerleader

ROSE BOWL — Geoffrey Strand looks forward, then back, then forward, holding up a sign directing the crowd when it’s time to scream. “Not yet,” the sign reads, Strand glances back quickly at the field. No movement yet. “Not yet.” Strand looks back again, sees the Arizona State Sun Devils prepare to line... Read more →

Dieting never takes a holiday

According to a commercial from a popular cereal company, “When it comes to dieting, the more options you have, the more likely you are to stay on track.” Excuse my French, but that is complete bull! They are just trying to get you to buy each of their eight different versions of dry cereal. In fact, according to at least 20... Read more →

On the job training

Dear New Shrink, I started a new job about two weeks ago. I have been waiting for a position like this for a long time but now I have a difficult decision to make. The company only takes off Thanksgiving Day for a holiday and I am expected to work the day before and the day after. My family lives over five hours away and I have been planning... Read more →

No bliss found at new age dinner

My husband and I were invited to experience an unusual food event the other night at 1418 Abbott Kinney called Bare Naked Bliss. The lovely center that hosted it, Ascended Living, is on the second floor of a building that promotes itself as an urban oasis. We “ascended” the stairs and were greeted by the hostess, Suzanne Toro, a... Read more →

Never too soon to start yoga

During our pregnancies, we practiced yoga to try to relieve stress, backaches, and that awful swelling in our knees and ankles. We did specific exercises to help us get our bodies in shape to deliver and keep our minds calm and focused through the excruciating pain of childbirth. After the birth, we attended mommy and me and post-natal... Read more →

Local teen to dance in the Macy’s Day Parade

PALISADES AVE — Rebecca Hutman is used to being in the spotlight. The 15-year-old Santa Monica resident has danced at Clippers games and school musicals, studio recitals and summer camps. But next week will be a whole other story. Hutman, who lives by Goose Egg Park, will be watched by 2 million spectators and an estimated 65... Read more →

Increasing your carotenoid intake

A guy walks into a doctor’s office with a carrot in his ear and a piece of celery up his nose. The doctor told him he wasn’t eating right. Badum-bum. Last week we looked at vitamin A’s uses and food sources. Although toxicity used to be rare, with the increase in supplements and topical creams that contain vitamin A, there... Read more →

A sweet play of great value entertains

What if bygones are never bygones? What happens to a man, betrayed by a friend, who seethes in anger and bitterness for the next 30 years? And what happens to that former friend who has, ostensibly, “put the past behind him,” but has to live with the ineradicable knowledge of that betrayal and the shadow it casts over the rest of... Read more →