Thu05052016

News

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Gregory Helfrich

Santa Clara Sheriff’s detectives have arrested a Los Altos Hills man they suspect repeatedly molested a child decades ago.

Detectives arrested Gregory Helfrich, 54, on a warrant at his Old Page Mill Road home April 27 and...

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Schools

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students


Courtesy of Jessica Harell
Blach Intermediate School seventh-grader Paris Harrell, who loves science and animals, recently received a scholarship from the local branch of the AAUW to attend Tech Trek camp.

It’s not every day that a junior hig...

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Community

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner


Federici

Longtime Los Altos resident Mario Federici, who turned 98 Feb. 24, is a man of many languages. He shared his knowledge with thousands of students during his long career as a teacher.

Federici was born and raised in Italy, where he stud...

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Comment

Attend an event, get involved, have fun: Editorial

You don’t have to run for city council to get involved in the community. Sometimes it can be as simple as attending a Los Altos event. You’ll have plenty of opportunities, as the May and June calendars are bustling with activity.

The Dow...

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Special Sections

Racing around Monterey

Racing around Monterey


Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The easy handling of the VW Golf R, above, makes for an ideal ride along the Big Sur coast.

 

When automotive journalists are asked to list their favorite places in the world to drive, Monterey alway...

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Business

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations


Courtesy of Eureka
Eureka, a new restaurant in downtown Mountain View, highlights local craft beer and whiskeys on a menu of food spanning from sea to farm.

Craft beer and fancy whiskeys headline the menu at Eureka, the new restaurant that opene...

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People

Stepping Out

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'


Courtesy of Palo Alto Players
The Baker’s Wife, left, and Cinderella’s erstwhile Prince stand out in the Palo Alto Players production of “Into the Woods.”

Little Red Riding Hood sets forth at the outset of “Into the...

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Spiritual Life

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International


Courtesy of Los ALtos United Methodist Church
Hidden Villa will bring some of its farm animals to Los Altos United Methodist Church Sunday to support the nonprofit Heifer International.

Los Altos United Methodist Church is scheduled to salute th...

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Author touts joys, advantages of 'prime time' fatherhood


Bruce Barton/Town Crier
Len Filppu reads from his new book, “Prime Time Dads: 45 Reasons to Embrace Midlife Fatherhood,” at Linden Tree Books.

When Len Filppu became a first-time father at the age of 49, he was nervous about it.

“I worried about falling asleep at Little League games, drooling like Homer Simpson,” he told a Nov. 8 gathering at Linden Tree Books in Los Altos.

Filppu, author of the new book “Prime Time Dads: 45 Reasons to Embrace Midlife Fatherhood (Bright Lights Press, 2013),” appeared at Linden Tree to sign books, read excerpts and offer his off-the-cuff, humorous perspective on later-life parenting.

While he acknowledged that fatherhood at an older age isn’t for everyone, Filppu called having children later in life the “absolute best thing that ever happened to me.”

The retired corporate communications specialist, now 62, pointed to his daughter, 13, and son, 10, in the Linden Tree audience.

Prime-time fatherhood worked for him, Filppu said, because focusing on his career in his youth allowed him the financial security to raise a family later.

“I was able to travel around the country,” he said. “Had I had children in my 20s and 30s, I would have been inhibited from doing that.”

Filppu said the life experiences that come with maturity are a big plus for raising children.

“You know more about people,” he said. “You know more about your own shortcomings.”

Another advantage, he noted, is losing the pretense and not being afraid to “act like a clown.” He recalled playing Captain Hook on the playground.

“My son immediately joined in the game,” he said, adding that before long, another 30 kids were playing with them, raising the eyebrows of curious parents. “I worried they might think I was the local pervert, but I sensed a touch of private admiration.”

Other benefits involve a change in attitude and philosophy. Being older, Filppu said, made him say yes to his children’s requests rather than “maybe later,” because time was more precious – and later might never come.

“When they ask me, ‘Dad let’s shoot baskets,’ instead of putting it off, I get myself up to do it,” he said.

Later-in-life fatherhood also inspired him to stay in shape – hike, do yoga – because he wants to be around as long as possible for his kids. Or as he puts it, “It gets me out of the rocking chair and keeps me rocking.”

Former CNN broadcaster Larry King, who had two sons when he was in his 60s, can relate. He provided a testimonial for Filppu’s book.

“The best thing that ever happened to me in life is being able to be a later in life dad,” King wrote. “I’m 77 years old, I have three grown children, and the lights of my life are my 11- and 10-year-old boys. Later life fatherhood keeps me young, keeps me vital, and makes me feel relevant each and every day. I urge you to read ‘Prime Time Dads.’ Its point of view is young and vital and relevant each and every page.”

“Prime Time Dads” is available through major online retailers both as a print book for $14.95 and as an e-book for $9.99.

For more information, visit primetimedads.com.

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