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August-September, 2008, Volume 10, Issue 5


AUG 8—31 JUST PLEIN FUN INVITATIONAL.  Show at Debra Huse Gallery.


AUGUST 27 KICK OFF MEETING - BALBOA ISLAND TRAFFIC & PARKING STUDY - CARROLL BEEK CENTER - 6:00 - 7:30 pm The City has hired Consultants - come and give your input.

AUGUST 30 PANCAKE BREAKFAST 8—10 am Beek Center Park

MAY 2, 2009 ALL ISLAND GARAGE SALE 7:30 am—3:00 pm

SHOOTING THE BREEZE . . . . Carolyn Carr

I learned something about myself recently.  In fact during these times—which haven’t been easy for any of us no matter how much or how little money you have - I have learned a lot about myself.  And life.  It really is, as they say, a matter of attitude.  It can make things go right or go wrong.  Attitude can make your day good or bad. 

Attitude can make you sing with joy or cry with frustration.  Attitude can take a challenge and make it full of exciting possibilities or a black pit into which you are falling.  I think my friend Mary Hardesty-Clayton summed it up one day when I noticed she was playing the lottery like I do—she said, “I play the lottery because of the possibilities.”

It was a little boy named Seth that taught me about myself and gave me a lesson in what is important.  It was Saturday afternoon on Agate and Seth was with his mom Lisa and her friend Sam.  Lisa thought Seth was with Sam and visa versa—and it only takes a moment of truly human behavior to turn into a near tragedy. 

imageI was in my office and I heard what turned out to be Sam scream, “No, No, No!!” and then a screech and a scream.  And lots of crying.  I thought a car hit someone—but it was a bicycle.  Seth had gotten away from Lisa and was headed toward Sam who was parked in front of the Stone building.  The ferry line was stopped and there were no cars coming—but the bicycle was coming.  And a three year old probably thinks of a bicycle as fun—not a dangerous thing.  It hit Seth—Hard.  Seth went down.  And when he came up he was bleeding profusely from his head and his lip was swelling.

Sam was yelling, “we need to take him to the hospital.” Seth was crying.  Lisa was in a panic.  Now, I hate blood and violence.  My kids screen movies and tell me if I can watch them or not.  I have spent whole movies with my hands covering my eyes.  But for some reason—when I see the real thing I become very calm.  It is like I go into a trance. 

So Lisa, Seth and I went into my work bathroom and wiped off the blood and revealed a small cut—head wounds bleed disproportionately.  And put ice on his lip.  And then all hell broke loose.

Someone had called 911—we had police—we had our local fire men who I recognized from my yearly inspection—we had paramedics—we had traffic cops redirecting the ferry traffic so that all the emergency vehicles could park on Agate.  We had more people in that one small bathroom than I thought possible.  It reminded me of the Volkswagen stuffing events in college. 

Seth survived the chaos—although he refused the stickers offered by the paramedics down to the last moment.  Lisa was in shock.  She almost left my office with her face covered in blood.  A truly panicked mom who knew in her heart that the bicycle could have been a car and the results could have been far worse than going to the store with a still crying, frightened youngster to get popsicles to sooth his fat lip.

I guess we all learned something.  Lisa and Sam learned that little boys are like greased lightening and you cannot look away for a second.  I learned that in spite of all the problems I have been having—mine are small in the world of things.  I am alive, I am healthy and I can do something about my problems. 


I received a call yesterday from Steve Koudelka of the Newport Beach Police Department who asked if I would do him a favor and clarify a recent incident on Little Balboa Island. 
On Thursday July 24, 2008 at 9:50 pm a woman in her 20s was walking by the construction site on Little Island by the Little Island Bridge. The woman was approached by a stranger who asked her directions to Agate Avenue.  He then tried to snatch her purse by putting his arm around her.  She thought the silver object he was holding in his hand was a knife.
She was very, very, scared.  An SUV came over the bridge at that moment. When the car’s lights shined on the two people the man ran away.  6-8 police officers, two canines and the helicopter responded to her call.  The man has not been caught. 


Icons have made the Island a Tapestry—held together with common threads, yet each adding their own unique pattern.  “Maxwell”, the owner-proprietor of J.P. Maxwell @ 204 Marine Avenue is no exception!

Born and raised in Los Angeles of Russian/Scottish descent, he always had ‘wanderlust’ - perhaps inherited from a 1990’s grandmother who survived a trip fatal to many.  She came from Russia through Siberia and China to get to America.  His great grandfather came West for the California “Gold Rush’!  Maxwell wonders if anyone has that kind of grit now?

Maybe he does?  At 18 Maxwell took a bus to Mexico.  Several months later he walked into his home with a beard he nearly tripped on while his mother was having a ladies’ card game.  Typical Mother—she said she was glad to have her ‘baby’ back!  Although his father was employed by Disneyland creating special effects, Maxwell acquired a Bachelor of Arts and Masters in Foreign Trade.  He knew he wasn’t destined for the corporate life.

Ever drawn to the ‘unique’, Maxwell first designed clothes for the “Sawdust Festival” in Laguna Beach and then took over a shop there.  Maxwell named his shop “Aardvark” - the hippie influence started his intrigue with hand-made clothing (because no two are alike) and a lifetime of world travel to find hand made clothes & ‘just observe the world, not try to change it.’ His travels included Eastern Europe, Asia, India, Indonesia, Africa, and South America.  Starting in 1970 he opened three Island stores: Aardvark, Ethan, and J.P. Maxwell’s, after a lot of hard work and time.

Who would think this mild mannered, quiet, modest man would name 2 stores ‘Aardvark’ because he is fascinated by anteaters!!  Or generate world wide clientele, including a Senator from Majorca, Spanish priests and Island visitors through only ingenious retail business and graciousness?

Although his heart is in the Island Spirit—his two sons, wife, 2 cats, Island home and one remaining store are all here on Balboa Island.  But Maxwell still has the ‘wanderlust to travel more.  He says if something happens and he isn’t around—just say “Maxwell is on the road somewhere.”

Would you like to be saluted as a Balboa Island ICON—please call Doris Lee @ 949.280.0607 or e-mail

The Debra Huse Gallery Proudly Presents –The Third Annual Just Plein Fun Invitational

The Debra Huse Gallery is proud to present the third annual Just Plein Fun Invitational!! Award-winning artists will paint scenes on beautiful Balboa Island from August 4th –August 8th while the public watches.  On Friday, August 8 there will be a “Brush Off” downtown from 4-6 pm with live music.
The show will open that evening with an artist reception at the Debra Huse Gallery.  Jean Stern of the Irvine Museum will present awards and there will be a raffle with fabulous prizes including an original painting. Artists include: John Budicin, Patti Cliffton, Debra Huse, Margaret Jamison, Mark Kerkoff, Greg LaRock, Terry Masters, Michael Obermeyer, Scott Prior, Frank Serrano, Jason Situ and Keith Wicks.  The Show will run through August 31.


Bright, Airy, Quiet Studio Apartment w/Sleeping Loft. 
Queen Sized Bed– Super Comfortable!!
DirecTv in Living and Sleeping Areas.
We Supply the Linens and the Coffee!!!
Wireless Internet Access.
$950.00/week.  949.422..8570.

Need a Fax or a Copy - Or an Airline Ticket Printed Out.
Come to Island Flooring.
We even do short run copy jobs—NO NEED TO LEAVE THE ISLAND.
118 Agate Avenue
949.675.3456.  FAX NUMBER 949.675.4348

You can’t have a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you . . . . .John Wooden

DEE’s BALBOA ISLAND TALK . . . . . . . . . . Dee Dawson

Summer is here and it is time to get out and enjoy our Balboa Island beauty—a ‘destination spot’ for travelers everywhere.  You will bump into them up and down Marine or strolling either of our Bayfronts—many with tasty ‘Balboa Bars’ in hand!

As I window-shopped one recent afternoon I ran across several Outdoor sale racks packed with bargain mark downs! 

I stopped by the ‘just opened’ Seashell Company—218-1/2 Marine—and spoke with new owner John Mehess.  Busily unpacking boxes and stocking shelves he informed me that he invites all LOCALS ONLY to a generous 20% off all purchases.  What a great guy!  I admired some lovely wind chimes just hung up—more merchandise on its way—check it out soon!  949.675.7377.


Also getting in on the act—did you know that Hershey’s Market is now carrying a signature line of Balboa Island logo items?  You can find pens, caps, mugs and more boasting our island paradise.  Visiting friends and relatives can take back a memento of their time spent here.  I picked up a couple of ballpoint pens while I was there to replace the ones I keep losing.  Useful impulse items or gifts!!

Beat the heat on a hot July day and stop into Tutti-Frutti for a delicious bar or bowl of frozen yogurt.  So many neat flavors to choose from you will want to serve up one of each!  New to the neighborhood—this type of shop is a welcome addition just in time for Summer!!

Just in case you hadn’t heard, Rick, our well-liked Island fixture at the Post Office is no longer working there.  He was promoted recently to supervisor and has transferred to another office.  I have spoken with lots of locals who were sad to see him go.  But, Rick, congratulations on your promotion.  We Miss You!!


On Agate, I really liked the fun—and very reasonably priced— apparel collections at Let’s Go Shopping, 114 Agate Avenue 949.723.1169. This cute little boutique with alternative lines to the ones usually featured ‘up-town’ on Marine Avenue.  Great jeans, purses, sundresses and tees at reasonable prices.  Also, ladies don’t forget to pick up a couple of pieces of jewelry to accent your outfit—some really snazzy stuff and mostly one of a kind.

Football Season Is Here—Island Style, 118 Agate Avenue, has all your favorite team flags—from Everyone’s Favorite—the House Divided (Comes in a door mat too) - to All the Pac Ten, Big Ten, Long Beach State, San Diego State and schools from all over the country.  Door Mats and Luggage Tags too!  NFL Teams.  MLB, NHL, NBA too!  Come in and see what’s new.


Tina Page was known as “Tina from Apolena” - she grew up at 222 Apolena .  She spent first and second grade traveling to St. Catherine’s school in Laguna Beach, but in 4th grade Tina entered Our Lady Queen of Angels where she had the honor of being a part of the first 8th grade graduating class.

While living on the Island she attended St. John Vianny with her friends.  They used to hang out in the “choir loft” and leave during the commotion of communion. 

imageOne incident at St. John’s sticks vividly in her mind today.  “Hell Harvey—Father Harvey” did not allow pants to be worn by females to services.  He felt they were inappropriate.

One day a woman had the audacity to actually wear pants.  Father Harvey said, “Oh my God, you are so fat to be wearing pants.  You look like Crisco—fat in a can!” No wonder Tina remembers that after all these years!

Tina was married on Apolena and moved to another Island—Maui, in 1974.  Her husband worked for the Chart House and then they started their own restaurant—the Makawao Steakhouse.  They sold that and started Pizza Burger and then Kapaheo’s Steakhouse.  During this time they had three children—Ryan, Lindsay and Chris.

Then Tina started North Shore Bookkeeping.  She had been doing bookkeeping for all the restaurants and really enjoyed it.  One day Tina’s brother, Craig Page, called and said the house next to his was for rent on Opal—so Tina came back to Balboa Island after 33 years.  And she started Island Bookkeeping.

Tina’s service is wonderful—I used her recently to help me catch up. She is an expert with Quick Books.  Tina can do business as well as personal books—and Payroll too.  So please give her a call at 949.673.7941 and don’t forget to ask her about “Hell” Harvey!!!

TIP OF THE MONTH . . . . .  . . Coffee Grounds Repel Cats
Scatter coffee grounds in your flower beds—the cats will stay away!  It doesn’t matter whether the grounds are fresh or used to brew coffee.  Apply them liberally, either underneath or on top of mulch.  The nice thing is that the coffee grounds smell nice and will help dissipate and mask odors until time and nature do it for you.


New Wood Floors from Du Chateau—Finished with Oil—Made in Holland. 25 year warrantee.  The first floors I saw at the flooring convention and it was “love at first sight”.  Gorgeous.  No need to refinish like conventional wood floors.  You can make the scratches disappear yourself.  I Love these floors.  Come and see them.

New Cork Floors—Eco friendly and beautiful.  Many patterns to choose from.  Warmer than stone.  Fun—nothing at all like you think of when you think of cork.

New Carpets from Tuftex and Queen—Basket weaves that are walking out of the store.  Beautiful.  A new “Island-type” look.  Back to The Islands by Tuftex.  I put it in my bedroom and now I have sold two housefuls—come and see—we give daily tours of our house.

Outdoor Living Carpets from Royal Dutch.  We have carpets we can make into any size and shape for your outdoor patio needs.  Why be constrained by the sizes available in the stores?
If you are “quality driven” come and see us.  Our prices are competitive and installation is the step that makes or breaks the job.  A great installation is the final step in a great job.  We have lots of rave reviews!
We will work to make sure your job goes smoothly from start to finish!

Did you know there are extended warrantees on some carpets—that you pay for???

ISLAND FLOORING Will Donate 10% of Your Total Invoice to Your Favorite Charity
Expires October 15, 2008

118 Agate Avenue
Balboa Island, CA 92662
949.422.8569 Cell

The Island Breeze
PO Box 5930
Balboa Island, CA 92662