Monday, December 22, 2008

Where's the Beef?

During the last few weeks of commuting to Mom's in Placentia, and running errands for her in Yorba Linda and Fullerton, I have become confused. Yes, more than usual. Anaheim brags about how much TOT we take in from the Resort District, and I have been among the most vocal of those braggin, I know. What confuses me is this: the streets, curbs and sidewalks of other north county communities are in substantially better condition than Anaheim. Why? Yes, Yorba Linda is a more affluent community, and Placentia and Fullerton have a more stable economic income base than Anaheim, but their property taxes do not come close to the TOT that Anaheim pulls in. So where does the money go? Why are Fullerton's streets in better shape when their General Fund is nowhere near ours?

Just wondering........

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Sorry I Haven't Been Posting Lately

Marianna Howland Ward, born March 5, 1930, slipped quietly into the arms of Jesus on Wednesday, December 17 at 9:45 pm. Her son Richard held her right hand, her daughter in law Cynthia held her left hand, and in her sleep she simply did not take her next breath. It was exactly what she had hoped for, and we are blessed that she did not suffer. Right up to the end, even as the cancer spread, Marianna was in no pain. None. The Lord had His hand on her thoughout this ordeal. I know that is hard to think of, when He took her against our wishes, but in the end she had no pain, no struggle, a dignified end for a remarkable woman. We were able to celebrate Christmas as a family before she dropped into sleep, all of her grandchildren gathered together, and she had written them letters that were put into their Christmas cards-with many tears. A dear friend, Kelsey Myers, came and played Christmas Carols on her harp, it was truly beautiful. Marianna left us with no regrets.

Services will be Saturday, December 27 at 11 am.
Memory Gardens Mortuary Chapel
455 W. Central Avenue Brea, CA

Marianna left provision for a lunch gathering after the service, location to be announced at the service, but please plan to join us after interment, as we recall Marianna in a more relaxed setting.

In lieu of flowers Marianna requested that donations be made to:
Ovarian Cancer National Alliance
919 7th Street N.W. Suite 1190
Washington, D.C. 20006
St. Joseph Hospice
1845 W. Orangewood Avenue
Orange, CA 92868-9500

We also invite you, in honor of Marianna, to go out and just make someone’s day today. Open a door for a stranger. Call an old friend and tell them you love them. Forgive a hurt. Answer your telephone with a hearty Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening that makes your caller feel special. Marianna made every day count. May we all be so blessed.

With all of our family’s love to you and your family.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Candlelight and Castles

Took a day off from the battle against ovarian cancer to goof with the kids at the House of Mouse. Richard and I have long talked about those Annual Passes, and then we cheap out and don't do it. But it is time, the restorative powers of the Happiest Place on Earth were beyond compare, and especially now that our brilliant leader Ahnold wants to tax Dland tix to the tune of nearly 10%, we figure we better grab those passes now. Yes, the new Sleeping Beauty visuals meet the Disney hype. But some areas bottle neck and we found ourselves essentially trapped in the castle, unable to move forward or back. Just avoid anyone who had the garlic shrimp last night and you're fine.

Candelight was, as always, unbelievably beautiful, it touches my soul like no church service. I had read on some blogs that you can buy dinner passes to the event, but they are pricey and sell out immediately. I'll let y'all in on the dirty little secret. I have attended Candlelight for several years now, and I have yet to buy a ticket. How? VOLUNTEER! Candlelight was intended by Walt to be a thank you to the community. While there may be a few people there who may have bought tickets, I would say the overwhelming number of people I see are the same people I run into at the community events. They are the people who volunteer as City Commissioners, or Board of Directors for local non-profits. Put in some time, make your world a better place, and let Walt's people say "thank you" at Christmastime. Not sure where to put in your time? Give me a holler, I have a huge list of ways you can help Anaheim.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Intl House of Blues Invitation to the Community

International House of Blues Foundation-Anaheim
2008 Foundation Series: Visual Arts Workshop

The International House of Blues Foundation-Anaheim (IHOBF-Anaheim) cordially invites Anaheim community members and their children to attend an IHOBF-Anaheim 2008 Foundation Series: Visual Arts Workshop.

About the Foundation Series: IHOBF's Foundation Series is an annual series presenting opportunities for donors and other community members to learn about IHOBF programming and to experience an IHOBF program or an arts/cultural activity related to IHOBF program content. the IHOBF-Anaheim 2008 Foundation Series: Visual Arts Workshop will offer participants and their children (up to 2 children per attending parent, recommended age is 5 and above) an opportunity to participate in a hands-on art workshop at the House of Blues-Anaheim. The workshop will include a guided tour of the House of Blues art collection, draw on content from the IHOBF Blues SchoolHouse Program, and feature a mixed media/symbols art activity based on the work of folk artist Roland Knox. All materials will be provided by IHOBF and no arts related experience is required.

Date & Time: Saturday, December 6th, 2008, 9:00am - 11:00am

Location: House of Blues-Anaheim, 1530 S. Disneyland Drive, Anaheim, CA 92802

Cost: this workshop is offered free of charge. Registration is required.

Registration: Space is limited and registration is handled on a first-come first-serve basis. To register please contact IHOBF Program Manager Amber Portz by telephone at 714.520.2388 or via email at

About the IHOBF: IHOBF is dedicated to bringing the arts to schools and communities through programs that promote cultural understanding and encourage creative expression. For more information about IHOBF programs. please contact the IHOBF-Anaheim office by telephone at 714.520.2388 or visit the IHOBF website at

The International House of Blues Foundation is supported by the House of Blues, House of Blues Foundation Room Members, Live Nation and other public and private donors.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Voter Literacy

Today's image is our own Lorri Galloway, not only attending, but clearly leading, a Union protest at Disneyland that disrupted the vacations of our beloved TOT paying visitors, whose vacations help pay for the salaries of the firefighters who helped Re-Elect Lorri (talk about turning yourself into butter). The image is posted in "celebration" of today's swearing in ceremony, which Ms. Galloway insisted on moving to the Heritage Forum so her friends could all attend. Look carefully at the faces of these union leaders, they are certain to be at the party tonight! Sour grapes? Oh yeah, as sour as they get. But not for the reasons you are thinking. If I believed for a second that the people of Anaheim had a grasp of the very real issues that our City faces, if I believed for a second that the people of Anaheim truly understood who Lorri Galloway is and what she stands for, and that 22.6% of my neighbors wanted her to represent them, I would bow to that decision. But the reality is, many of the people who pride themselves on voting in every election do not bother to examine the issues, or the candidates, before casting that vote. Example: Jennifer Rivera, an unknown candidate who never filed a candidate's statement and ran no campaign, did not attend any candidate's forums, and never even posted a website, picked up 8,208 votes! How? She was the first name listed on the ballot-and voters were overheard at the polls admitting they simply picked her because she was first and they wanted to get home. So today I share this photo in one last scream of election futility. When voters were presented with this photo, Lorri lost votes. Sadly, the mainstream press, even the ones who bothered to cover the Union protest, never mentioned the presence of Lorri Galloway, so the exposure of this info was limited to a few political blogs. Thanks guys!

While I am the first to admit my viewpoints may be those of a bitter old (Forty-something) woman, a recent study shows that more people know that Paula Abdul is a judge on American Idol than understand the origins of the Gettysburg Address.

So what is the answer to increasing, oh lets be nice and call it "voter awareness'? One friend suggests sending voter instructions as a type of scavenger hunt. If you are smart enough to unravel the clues and find your polling place, you are smart enough to vote. I like it. At the very least, I think each and every one of us should be required to pass the same Citizenship test required of immigrants. Just for fun, see if you can pass it. Then tell me, what are your theories for keeping the "eenie-meenie-minie-moe" voters from spoiling it for the rest of us? Discuss among yourselves.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Ovarian Cancer Sucks

Today my beloved Mother In Law came home in an ambulance. She is now in Hospice care, and we will knock ourselves silly making her comfortable for the few weeks she has. I hate this. We are talking about the most vibrant human being I have ever met. I have never heard her utter an ugly word about another person. Ever. Never seen her depressed or even really angry. Maybe frustrated a time or two. When the doctors came in on Friday to tell her the cancer had spread, she sat there for a little bit, absorbed the news, and just muttered, "Damn". Saturday she was down. Nobody can blame her. She wants to see her grandchildren finish college, dance at their weddings, and become a great-grandmother-in that exact order, please (and tease her son at becoming a grandfather). By Sunday, she decided she was done with that pity party. Life is short, and getting shorter fast, and she wants to spent her remaining days smelling the roses. So home she went. She has been a volunteer with the same Hospice group that is now caring for her (talk about awkward, every time I need something I have to tell yet another worker that she is sick) and Marianna has made it her goal to encourage her Hospice team through her passing! What do you do with a woman like that? Well first off you marry her son. Then you love her until you can hand her into the arms of Jesus. Hopefully much longer from now than the doctors figured. I think (and hope) they underestimate the feisty little firecracker they just diagnosed. We will start with getting her to hang on through Christmas, and then we will work on New Year's, and before you know it Valentine Day will be here.....thanks for the prayers. Please keep them up.