Fri10242014

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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Through seasons of life, House of Grace helps women plant new seeds


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Breaking the cycle of addiction and domestic violence, Jennifer celebrates the role the House of Grace Recovery Program played in her transformation.

When Jennifer starts her new job as a dental assistant this week, it won’t be her first job, but it will be the first time the mother of three stands on her own.

Lost, addicted to drugs and nearing her breaking point, 39-year-old Jennifer needed a helping hand. She found that help at CityTeam Ministries’ House of Grace Recovery Program in San Jose, a faith-based, yearlong residential experience that supports women as they struggle to overcome drug addiction, domestic violence and homelessness.

As a young adult, Jennifer watched others in her family fall into a cycle of drug abuse and domestic violence. Without a support system at home, she moved out by the age of 14, mixed with the wrong crowd and headed down the path of addiction. When she became pregnant at 18, Jennifer vowed to be a responsible mom, but the seeds of her disease had already taken root.

“I wasn’t able to be the friend or mother I wanted to be,” said Jennifer, describing how she lost jobs, friends, partners and even her children during her 20-year drug-fueled descent. “(Drugs) took everything from me.”

Six months into her life at House of Grace, Jennifer is rediscovering who she is, renewing her relationship with God and building a community of sisters with other residents unlike any she had experienced.

“One of the most beautiful blessings of this program is that I get to look around and see the growth and restoration happening around me,” said Jennifer of the program’s 20 other participants. “It’s like being in a garden, and each time somebody new comes, it’s like a new plant that blossoms into these gorgeous new flowers.”

In addition to refreshing her technical skills in dental work through CityTeam’s Compass Academy, Jennifer noted that Bible study, life-skills classes and a network of counselors and peers are contributing to her recovery. For younger program residents, volunteer work in the office, at the onsite day-care center or at a food service center proves a valuable training opportunity that often leads to stronger prospects in the job market.

With residents of diverse backgrounds and ages – some as young as 18 – Jennifer said she feels like she is not only being helped, but is also able to help others find the love, support and encouragement that have been missing from her life.

“We come here broken, and moment by moment we’re restored,” she said. “We stay here long enough to not only see the change, but to have a hand in it.”

For more information, visit cityteam.org/san-jose/house-of-grace.

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