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Coastal Breeze, December 2014 - January 2015, Volume 4, Issue 1


Wednesdays ART WITH A TWIST—5:30 pm-8 pm—Wilma’s Patio Contact: Carole Boller @949.433.1400or e-mail
Wednesday January 1 NEW YEARS DAY—HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
Saturday April 25, 2015 25th ANNUAL BALBOA ISLAND—ALL ISLAND GARAGE SALE 7:30 am—3 pm

Christmas is coming!  Every year there is a universal rumbling and grumbling—from Grandparent, aunts and uncles and friends of all kinds.  The younger generation doesn’t know how to write ‘thank you notes’ !
They all ask, “How do we even KNOW when a package has arrived—or more importantly a card with money.” There is only the sound of silence!  We don’t give these presents just for the ‘thank you’ , but it would be nice to be acknowledged once in a while!” And to know a gift actually arrived!


Each year Mark Zuckerberg, of Facebook fame, sets a goal for the year.  In 2010 it was to learn Mandarin, in 2011 to only eat meat he had slaughtered himself, in 2013 to meet a new person every day and last year it was to write a ‘thank you’ note every day.  He figured he had plenty of things to be thankful for—and so do we!
Google “Famous Thank You Notes” and you will find examples from Neil Armstrong, Ronald Reagan, Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe and even the infamous Johnny Depp!
When I was a child my parents sat me down after Christmas and helped me write Thank Yous to everyone who gave me a gift—no matter how small.  I still try to do it—but I am not nearly as consistent as Mr. Zuckerberg.  My goal is to send that Thank You note every day in 2015!  There are so many opportunities—for gifts, job interviews (who do you think is more likely to get that position), small kindnesses you remember or just to say you appreciate someone.
I volunteer at New Directions for Women and Repeat Boutique on 17th Street next to Ralph’s.  They never fail to send me a ‘thank you’ for every thing I do. In December they are having a Luncheon to thank all of us who volunteer our time.  What a wonderful group of people run that organization!  They know the value of “an attitude of gratitude.”
Do stop in at Repeat Boutique if you have time—I have found many fun and fashionable clothes donated by ladies who wear things a time or two and then pass them on.  It is a great place to shop and the employees and volunteers who greet you are wonderful. 
Let’s all Be Thankful and Have a Wonderful Holiday Season and a Happy New Year! Just don’t forget to write those all important Thank You Notes.  You will brighten someone’s day just by telling them you are thinking of them.
Remember—”You can’t be Grateful and Hateful at the same time!! “

Maturity is a Myth.  I don’t know anybody mature.  I just know children with older bodies” Chellie Campbell


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!


If you are on Covered California and turn 65—you need to contact BOTH your insurance carrier and Covered California to cancel your insurance. Otherwise you could be penalized for the months you used Covered California while on Medicare.  Read Emily Bazar’s column.  http://www.ocregister.com/articles/california-642764-medicare-covered.html The tricky part is ACTUALLY getting them to cancel you.  Mike turned 65 in July and we are still getting invoices from Health Net despite numerous phone calls and faxes from us and from our insurance agent!  Emily has heard from many of us and will do a follow up column - so stay tuned. (Emily Bazar is a columnist at the USC Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism)


Scams—several days ago Mike got a call on his cell phone—they said it was the IRS.  I told him, “Hang up—it’s a scam!” He didn’t have time—the other person quickly hung up. Remember NO government agency will call you looking for money or information—not the IRS, not the State, not even the Sherriff because you missed jury duty.  They will send you an official letter! 

DEE’S TALK OF THE COAST . . . . . Dee Dawson
Well can you believe we’re at Holiday-Season 2014???  And as always, multiple great Gift Giving ideas - but too little space to name them all!
Island Home never fails to impress me with their ‘nostalgic’ array of  Christmas selections.  Loveliest Table-Top Miniature Trees w/ gleaming ornaments, priced @ only $12.95 - $30.00 range.  The adorable ‘Elfin’ window characters highlight this year’s window.  But my absolute favorite, is the old-time ‘Father Christmas’ figurine, stringing lights.  ’He’ is a limited Edition and a definite must-have collectible.  Perfect for your mantle or Fireplace area.  Swing by the ‘Treats Table’ on your way out and pick up a delicious Peppermint-bark Gourmet candy.  Great stocking stuffer!  
At Persimmon Tree, I love, love, the picture frames designed by local Artist ‘Paige Rayner’ who has designed a most unique collection featuring weathered wooden ‘pier-pilings’ adorned with seashell clusters.  Perfect for our BI Waterfront homes & fab gift!  48.00 only!  
Another ‘regular’ on my Holiday list each year - Idell’s Gift Box - bringing back her famous & charming Buyer’s Choice selection.  This year featuring a stunning Horse drawn White Carriage@ $253.00 a piece but that will remain in your family, for generations to come!  The usual ‘Carolers’ and others are featured as well, with a few of them in signed Limited-Editions by Joyce Buyer herself. I also liked the wooden Advent Calendar which harkens back to “days of yore”.  Back seal allows you to sign and ‘gift’ the Christmas year.  
Across the street at Magnolia Charlie’s, check out the most adorable Tea-Set in Pic-Nic basket, for the littler girls on your list.  Priced reasonably at $38.00   
Alex’s Fashion Center is THE place for trendy ‘UGG’ Boots - Owner ‘Rachel’ has all top styles and will save us BI gals a trip to Fashion Island!  Stop in soon, and please tell her I sent you!  Also check out the great Neck Scarves - ‘Burberry’ inspired plaids - in new Fabrication of ‘Cashmina’!   But the BEST part, is the price - only $24.00!  Fantastic look for so little!!  
Couldn’t pass by Too Sweet without a stop-in!  Fantastic Gourmet Balboa Bars - a newer ‘twist’ on the original.  Don’t pass by the other delectable candy-creations—throw all caution to the wind; “Tis the Season” to ENJOY - Yum!  
And finally, J.P. Maxwell’s for our Island guys -the much awaited annual Reyn Spooner ’Christmas Shirt’ is in!  In not one but (3) colors this year;  Navy, Tan and Red.  $84.00  Also, check out the ‘Kahala’ Hawaiian-Christmas Shirts, featuring neat Hawaiian scenes.   Nifty gift for that special fella on your Gift-list!  
imageLastly, we have lost a ‘handful’ of Island merchant old-timers as the year nears an end;  sad to see Martha’s Bookstore’s Kathy Wales and Stephanie Thomas are leaving - their little ‘nook’ was a longtime favorite of both mine and my family’s - and so many other Island readers to be sure.  
I wish you all, a Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday Season - see you all next year!!


ISLAND LIGHTS . . . Mike McCleur and Damon Burris

Soon we will all need our house covered with beautiful lights and decorations to make it a winning entry in the yearly Balboa Island Christmas Lights Contest.
Damon and Mike have been decorating for me for over 10 years here and in East Bluff!  They also work in other parts of Newport Beach!
Damon 949.307.8613 and Mike 949.903.9018