renaissance

Harmony in Hell

By Arnold Silverman   As we head into the Christmas season, I am reminded of an event that occurred in December of 1952, one of the “buried” stories that the old memory seems to be churning up recently (is the old bod telling me something?). It confirmed for me, in spite of...

An Englishman Recalls Holly Hunting in Hampshire

By Malcolm Warner   Christmas in my wife’s family in Chicago really looks like Christmas. Everyone’s happy to see the snow. There are big Christmas trees with an abundance of presents underneath, stockings hanging from the mantelpiece, feasts, carols, candlelight church...

A Red Christmas

By Susan Jacob, Ph.D.   Forest Park is still beautiful, 30 years after the St. Louis World’s Fair, especially when covered in snow. The air was fresh with the scent of pines, clear, cold and exhilarating. Red and his twin cousins were as playful as three large puppies,...

Riding Back in Time and Finding Hope

By Marni Magda   We moved to California after my father was killed in action in Korea in 1951. From then until 1963 Christmas vacation was a 2,200-mile drive across the United States to Louisville, Ky., to share the holidays with my grandparents. I could almost sme...

Musings on the Coast: The Christmas Present

When I was a kid, my family lived in old Corona del Mar and opened presents on Christmas Eve instead of Christmas morning.  It was a tradition from Kansas, where my folks came of age in the Great Depression.  We never got elaborate presents. They were small and inexpensive. ...
Posted On 29 Dec 2012

Summoning the Season’s Magic

By Justin Swanson | LB INDY   Families of 25 disadvantaged pre-school children gathered at the Boys and Girls Club last Friday, Dec. 21, to participate in the joy of opening presents presented by the Laguna Beach Police Department . A part of the 15-year tradition shared by...

Investors Selling Aliso Creek Inn

Local resident and sports retailer Mark Christy is believed to lead in investor group buying Laguna Beach’s Aliso Creek Inn and Golf Course from its current owner, private investors that deep-sixed an ambitious plan to remake the flood-prone property into a high-end conference...

Carrying the Flag for Obama in Florida

By Justin Swanson | LB Indy   Candidate Barack Obama’s exhortations worked a compact crowd into a frenzy at New York City’s Washington Square Park in September 2007. He smiled and acknowledged his newfound supporters and stood most presidentially, offering those within...

Offering Up a Special Literary Menu

Bite-sized chunks of writing to whet your brain’s appetite.   Edited by Christine Fugate & Sally Eastwood   On the Menu: Appetizers: “Canaries for Christmas” by Adele Kopecky “Lost In Translation: Christmas” by Sally Eastwood...

Finding Faith

By Susan Dodge Kuiper   There is another life, one of utter happiness and joy, of valuing the simple, yet meaningful.  After many seasons of semi-elaborate Christmases, much planning, a bit of stress and big relief afterwards, I had a turning point. It all started at Norm’s....

A Little Naughty Can Be Nice

By Jonathan Yanez   “Where did you say she was?” “Taking a day off from the workshop.  She’s shopping in Laguna.” “Hmmm, her naughty-to-nice ratio is surprising; are you sure this is accurate?” “Yes, sir.” I studied the reports and spreadsheets in my hands again but I knew I...

Taking Stock

It Was a Good Year Heading toward 2013, stocks can look back to a decent performance in 2012. Despite still unresolved issues on how to rein in scheduled tax increases and spending cuts, the stock market is ahead 13% this year on the S&P 500 index. The market was flat for...

Mrs. Schlobaum’s Christmas Cookies

By Liz Zuercher   It starts with my husband, Gary, asking me to make Springerles, the German anise cookies his childhood neighbor, Mrs. Schlobaum, used to make.  Innocently, I agree. Year One Two days before Christmas I realize the cookies must mellow in an airtight...

Canaries for Christmas

By Adele Kopecky The hot water gushing into the dishpan prevented Marie from hearing Gino enter the apartment.  She started when he kissed her on the back of the neck, but recovered to turn and throw her arms around him. “I didn’t expect you home so soon—no waiting at the...

Lost in Translation – Christmas

By Sally Eastwood   It’s December and the holiday season is upon us.  Ah, the holidays: time of year that the U.S. and my home country, Britain, share common themes with different traditions.  Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July obviously have no counterparts across the...