Wed10222014

News

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council continues to explore options to address parking constraints in the downtown triangle.

The Los Altos City Council last week held the first of two study sessions to discuss the potential construct...

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Schools

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A Los Altos High School student learns how to use robotic surgical equipment at the school’s Science and Technology Week event last year. Students can also attend hands-on presentations at this year’s event, w...

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Community

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display


Town Crier File Photo
Pirate Manor is once again scheduled to arrive in the front yard of Dane and Jill Glasgow’s home on Manor Way in Los Altos, just in time for Halloween.

Although not the Walking Dead, pirate skeletons have been brought to li...

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Sports

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Eric Reitmeir launches the ball over Mountain View High driver David Niehaus (2) and goalie Kenny Tang. The host Lancers won Friday’s non-league game 9-3.

There wasn’t a lot on the line Friday when ...

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Comment

Reeder, Fung for El Camino HCD: Editorial

The good news for the El Camino Healthcare District (formerly the El Camino Hospital District, for those still getting used to the new name) is that there is a contested election Nov. 4 for the district’s board of directors. Three candidates are runn...

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Special Sections

Plant-based diet offers benefits

Plant-based diet offers benefits


Photo by Ramya Krishna
Los Altos resident Nandini Krishna prepares a meat-free dish According to author Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D., a plant-based diet can help prevent cancer.

Shirley Okita of Los Altos has found that adhering to a mostly plant...

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Business

New shop offers haute couture for girls

New shop offers haute couture for girls


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Girls @ Los Altos at 239 State St. offers clothing lines such as Nellystella as well as toys and other items for girls.

Cecilia Chen opened The Girls @ Los Altos as a tribute to the party dress. Whether it’s for...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

BARBARA DARLING MERIDETH

1946-2014

Born in Palo Alto, raised in Los Altos, retired in southern Oregon. Survived by Peter James Merideth, sons Matthew, Jacob and John Merideth, the loves of her life.

She was a housewife who took great pride in her home, her surroundings and...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn



Los Altos Youth Theatre’s production of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a musical based on Washington Irving’s classic story, is set to run through Nov. 2 at Bus Barn Theater. The cast comprises 27 young actors, directed by Cindy Powell. Courtesy o...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Mother-daughter duos flourish through National Charity League community service


Courtesy of Jean Ikeda
The National Charity League’s Stanford Hills Chapter, above, has grown from 22 girls and their mothers in 1987 to more than 150 mother-daughter pairs from Los Altos and surrounding areas.

Some consider volunteering a sporadic weekend activity, but for local mothers and daughters involved in the National Charity League’s Stanford Hills Chapter, service is a long-term commitment with a clear intention.

“I would hate to see what my children’s lives would be like if they weren’t in situations where they had to dig deep inside themselves and give back and miss something every now and again,” said Los Altos resident Lisa Carmel, reflecting on the organization’s impact on her two daughters.

When Carmel heard about the National Charity League – an invitation-only nonprofit group that fosters mother-daughter relationships via philanthropy, community service, leadership training and cultural engagement – she was immediately drawn by the opportunity to spend more time with her daughters. The time spent together during activities was a finite resource that she came to appreciate as her girls gained independence in high school and left home for college.

One of 154 chapters nationwide, the Stanford Hills Chapter has grown from 22 local mother-daughter pairs in 1987 to more than 150 pairs today.

Once sponsored by a member and selected by lottery for induction in the organization as sixth-graders, the girls, known as Ticktockers, and their mothers make a commitment to serve in rotating leadership roles and fulfill at least 15 hours of community service annually over the course of the six-year program, which ends when the girls graduate from high school.

Chapter president Jean Ikeda, a Los Altos resident, has two daughters involved in the National Charity League. She noted that the organization’s three pillars – leadership, culture and philanthropy – seamlessly build on one another. Whether supporting the work of national nonprofits or community organizations including The Terraces at Los Altos, the Community Service Agency, Hidden Villa and the Ecumenical Hunger Program, according to Ikeda, mothers and daughters learn that service intrinsically develops character and values.

“NCL has opened my eyes to the poverty and need in my own community,” said Ikeda’s youngest daughter, Krissy, who is in her third year of the program. “I have had experiences that have enabled me to realize how much I can help other people.”

Kristin Link is another Los Altos mother who saw the National Charity League as a tool for instilling a lifelong habit of giving.

“When you live a privileged life, you give back, period,” Link said.

Link added that reading about the underserved in the newspaper is different from coming “eyeball to eyeball” with someone who needs a meal. Participation in the National Charity League offers her and her daughter face-to-face opportunities at shelters and seniors centers.

Despite the normal teenage resistance to waking up early on a Saturday or missing movies with friends because of the service projects, Carmel, Ikeda and Link agreed that the National Charity League experience encouraged their daughters to be more thoughtful and socially responsible.

“It’s fun to see the kids become teenagers and begin driving, to see them embrace it on their own and commit to giving back without you,” Carmel said.

Carmel added that older daughter, now a freshman in college, is evaluating sororities based on how much service they incorporate in their identities – a clear reflection of the mark the organization leaves on participants.

For more information, visit stanfordhillsncl.org.

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