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News

Council seeks more options for community center

Council seeks more options for community center


Town Crier File Photo
The Los Altos City Council approved an appropriation to examine options for a new community center to replace the aging Hillview facility.

The Los Altos City Council last week voted narrowly in favor of examining further opti...

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Schools

Local schools participate in  national Hour of Code activities

Local schools participate in national Hour of Code activities


Ellie Van HOutte/Town Crier
Himan Shu Raj, a volunteer from Microsoft, advises Los Altos High ninth-graders, from left, Serhat Suzer, Jamie Bennett and Chris Yang as they participate in the school’s Hour of Code Showcase.

Local schools participa...

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Community

Take a dive into the holiday archive

Take a dive into the holiday archive

Town Crier staff made a quick cruise back through the newspaper's archives to find some late-December reading as inspiration for eating, drinking, decorating and more:

Beloved holiday books build the spirit of the season and staff at Los Altos’ Li...

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Sports

Pinewood poised for another title run

Pinewood poised for another title run


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Pinewood’s girls basketball team is receiving contributions from several new players, including freshman Stella Kailahi, above.

Complacency shouldn’t be a problem for the defending Division V state champion Pinewood S...

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Comment

Letters to the Editor

Ticket motorists for U-turns on Main Street

As I was walking downtown on Main Street recently, something came to me out of the blue. The town of Los Altos is missing out on a huge revenue stream. I realized that if all the cars – there were th...

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Special Sections

Looking Ahead

Looking Ahead


s in line to be mayor of Mountain View in 2015.

Mountain View anticipates the following changes in 2015:

• Beginning Jan. 1, Mountain View City Councilmembers will receive a raise to $1,000 per month as a result of the passage of Measure A in...

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Business

Your 2015 stock market game plan

It’s been a maddening month because of oil and gas, especially in stocks and bonds. Then, consumer spending pushed stocks higher Thursday, easing investors’ jitters about the global economy and prompting them to consider how to invest in ...

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Books

Gawande's

Gawande's "Being Mortal" proves an important book on aging


Books about death and dying are usually not on my list of “must reads.”

I couldn’t resist, however, the best-selling “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” (Metropolitan Books, 2014) by Atul Gawande.

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People

SANGEETA SACHDEVA

SANGEETA SACHDEVA

Sangeeta Sachdeva, 55, wife of Subhash Sachdeva and mother to Natasha and Tanya, died at 8:54pm, Sunday, December 7, 2014 from respiratory failure.

Sangeeta was born on October 18, 1959 in Delhi, India. She was born to Moti Sagar and Raj Kapoor an...

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Travel

South Tahoe renovations enhance off-mountain seasonal fun

As any enthusiast knows well, there is more to the enjoyment of winter sports than skiing or snowboarding.

While many winter resorts make minor upgrades each season, the off-mountain attractions and amenities can be as enticing as the activities on ...

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Stepping Out

Aurora Singers to emit 'Musical Glow' Friday

Aurora Singers to emit 'Musical Glow' Friday


courtesy of Aurora Singers
The Aurora Singers are scheduled to perform a seasonal concert Friday night in Palo Alto.

The Aurora Singers’ “Winter’s Musical Glow” holiday concert is set for 7 p.m. Friday at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Pal...

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Spiritual Life

Enter the superhero: Finding the God who loves you

In my life-coaching practice, I see a lot of pain. Much of it stems from fear and guilt, often expressed as low self-esteem, anxiety, a lack of forgiveness both for oneself and others, anger – and so on.

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Magazine

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years


Courtesy of Christopher Stark
Homes on the St. Francis High School Women’s Club’s Christmas at Our House Holiday Home Tour showcase a variety of architectural styles.

The days grow short on sunshine but long on nostalgia as the holidays approach...

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Foothill resource center nurtures returning vets


Photo By:
Eliza Ridgeway/Town Crier

Veterans from around the country enroll at Foothill College, drawn by its outstanding reputation. When they arrive at the Los Altos Hills campus, in addition to excellent academic programs they find the Veterans Resource Center waiting for them. Under the direction of Carmela Xuereb, the center assists vets in their transition to civilian life.

On a recent weekday, young men and women passed through the humble little office space, the size of a teenager’s bedroom, filling out paperwork and taking a break between classes. They have access to the center’s extensive list of counseling, workshops and training. And they also guide each other as peer mentors.

Beth Stolyarchuk, a former Russian linguist in the U.S. Marine Corps, had only a week to get organized for her new life as a student when she moved from Hawaii this autumn to study radiology at Foothill. The Resource Center simplified the process. Xuereb walked her through the details of enrolling using military education benefits and introduced her to other resources veterans can tap.

“Carmela hooked me up with everything I needed to get done,” Stolyarchuk said, including a high-tech Livescribe Smartpen, to help her bring her A-game as she hits the books. Smartpens loans are among the resources veterans find at the center.

The pens record and store lectures and notes for later review. Using the new tool takes practice and follow-through, but Stolyarchuk said those are the skills veterans are particularly suited to bring to the classroom.

“Radiology is super competitive. I have to get good grades to get into the course,” Stolyarchuk said, reviewing the classes she was taking this fall and the new study skills she’d picked up as she took on a challenging geology course.

Support from the Town Crier Holiday Fund helps equip the center, which also has a computer lab and plans to expand into a larger space.

Veterans at the center last week spoke with gravity about the importance they place on their new mission – learning to excel as students.

“I have the discipline to sit in the classroom and pay attention,” Stolyarchuk said. “In my history class, I was made a teacher’s assistant because I was military.”

Xuereb said the center keeps teachers and staff at Foothill informed about the veterans who enroll, including any injuries, visible or unseen, that an accommodating classroom could ameliorate.

Returning from military service brings challenges differing from those most of the students face, independent of whether a veteran may have been wounded. Most of the vets are self-supporting rather than relying on parents’ funds and have to juggle work and study, veteran Brennon Shepherd pointed out.

Although veterans bring social skills honed by years of working with people from a wide range of backgrounds, when they get to Foothill, often they don’t know many people in the area. The Veterans Resource Center serves as a clubhouse, where they can find like-minded company and resources.

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