Mon09152014

News

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council last week approved the installation of two new directional signs on Foothill Expressway pointing motorists to the Woodland Plaza Shopping District.

The Los Altos City Council voted unanimou...

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Schools

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Edsel Clark, new Los Altos School District assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, above, facilitates a junior high mathematics curriculum meeting last week.

Edsel Clark, Ed.D., new assistant superintend...

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Community

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China


From IncredibleTravelPhotos.com
Jacque Kae’s “Mischievous” is one of the many photographs on display at Foothill College this month.

Photographs of the land and culture of Huangshan and Zhangjiajie, China, are on exhibit through Sept. 26 at t...

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Sports

Spartans shine in opener

Spartans shine in opener


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High’s Frank Kapp snares a touchdown pass from quarterback Owen Mountford in Friday’s win.

Leading by a point at halftime, the Mountain View High football team outscored visiting Del Mar 20-0 the rest of...

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Comment

A look ahead to the Nov. 4 election: Editorial

Election season is upon us. In Los Altos, we have three major local races ahead – two seats on the Los Altos City Council, and three seats each on the Los Altos School District and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District boards of tr...

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Special Sections

Renovation complete,  Villa Siena looks to future

Renovation complete, Villa Siena looks to future


Above and Below Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier; Left Photo Courtesy of Villa Siena
Villa Siena in Mountain View recently underwent a $35 million face-lift. The five-year project expanded their senior living community’s space and ability to serv...

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Business

Transitioning from postage to pets

Transitioning from postage to pets


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A new Pet Food Express store is scheduled to open at the Blossom Valley Shopping Center this month.

A site that previously existed to meet postal service needs will soon have an entirely different purpose – serving pe...

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Books

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights


A good story about aliens is always great fun to read – after all, it’s only by attempting to understand the human race from another perspective that we can see ourselves more objectively.

But readers who might be tempted to dismiss ye...

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People

JEANNE PACKARD

After suffering a stroke in May, Jeanne Packard died August 10, 2014 at age 83. She was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany, the only child of Emily Channel and Frank Howe Packard of Chicago, IL. Jeanne is survived by 5 great grandchildren. She was a lon...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos


Courtesy of Los
The cast of Los Altos Stage Company’s “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” includes, from left, Mylissa Malley as Lin, Vanessa Alvarez as Betty, and Christina Bolognini as Pickles. Altos Stage Company

Los Altos Stage Company...

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Spiritual Life

9/11 survivor Michael Hingson finds purpose

Imagine walking down 78 flights of stairs – 1,463 individual steps. You are in imminent danger as you walk, unsure whether you can make it out of the building before it collapses or explodes. Struggling for each breath, you smell the heavy sten...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Once upon a time: On the hunt for magic


The phrase “Once upon a time” is magical in more ways than we could ever imagine, and one that as adults we are far too eager to abandon. It takes us beyond our limited world of possibility and transports us into a grander spectacle of potential outcomes.

In storytelling, “Once upon a time” focuses on a past event (long ago and far away) that sends the message that something magical happened “before,” and to a child’s mind, it implies subconsciously that it could happen again. A child’s mind makes that leap naturally and effortlessly. But sadly, over time, our adult minds become programmed with walls, barriers and filters that trap us in a world of logic that relegates unlimited potential to the realm of nonsense.

Why is potential beyond our wildest dreams good enough (and indeed desirable!) for our children but not good enough for us? Magic happens all the time, all around us – but we make it small by calling it something else, like “good luck,” “fate” or, occasionally, a “miracle.”

We are all master storytellers, whether we realize it or not. We tell ourselves stories all the time. It is how we define and manage our universe, for better or for worse. When we are living in the “worst” scenario, it is not uncommon to retreat into someone else’s “better” story via movies, TV and, in days gone by more so than now, books.

We are always on the hunt for magic: sometimes in science fiction and other times perhaps in romance or mystery. There is even magic to be found in cookbooks and hobby books that create pictures in our heads of what “could be.”

There is a wonderful movie out now based on the best-seller “The Book Thief” (Knopf, 2006) by Markus Zusak. While it is set during the Holocaust, the focus is not political – it’s on how a young girl survived and thrived by reading books for her own enjoyment and out loud to others. The words on the pages magically transported them from their suffering to a better place and time for a while, and made their conditions bearable.

I would like to suggest a new trend in storytelling: Let’s change “Once upon a time” to “It happened once before and could happen again,” thereby embracing the magic of potential outcomes that defy logic and dance seamlessly between past and present. Why should children have all the fun? And why would we wish more for them than we wish for ourselves?

I am going to start right now searching for some fairy dust that can make me fly. I’m just saying, it may be an airplane ticket instead of gold residue, but I still get to fly – and how great is that?

Sharon Lennox-Infante is a Certified Life Coach who lives and works in Los Altos. For more information, visit sharonlennox.com.

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