Saturday, September 24, 2011

Temecula Pat & Oscars...Part Two

Okay, word is that the Pat & Oscars company filed Ch 7 bankruptcy. They are restructuring their entire operations which includes closing several stores. The Temecula Duck Pond location is closed for now (and 60 employees were laid off) but there are plans to re-open under new management at some time in the future.

Stay tuned....

Pat & Oscars at the Temecula Duck Pond....Closes?

Is it true? I heard today that amid a big corporate overhaul, our local Temecula Pat & Oscar's is (temporarily??) closed.

Without knowing the specifics, I would be so surprised if Pat & Oscar's as a company survives yet chooses to keep the Duck Pond store closed, since it always is packed and remains popular with families even during tough economic times.

Anyone have any info?

Monday, July 4, 2011

City of Temecula Fourth of July Parade

Our friend and neighbor Autumn Boden sang the national anthem to open the 2011 City of Temecula Fourth of July parade in Old Town this morning. She did a terrific job! It was thrilling hearing her beautiful voice amplified throughout the entire Old Town district. She got a great response from the crowd.

Then I opened my Californian newspaper this morning to find this article describing her singing like this:

In a performance that belied her youth, the 12-year-old delivered the national anthem in a clear, unwavering voice without affectation or apparent flaws, despite the legendary difficulty of the lyrics and melody.

Wow! Just, wow.

Hope you all had a fantastic Fourth!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Hair Feathers & Tinsel!

We are back from a vacation in Washington, D.C. You hope when traveling with kids that they appreciate cultural differences in different parts of the world. For instance, my nine year old noticed that nobody had "hair feathers" in Washington. She did see some at Dulles Airport (tinsel, too.) I pointed out to her that the airport isn't always a great gauge of local style because people from all over the world are just passing through.

"Maybe those people are from California," she said.

Sure enough, one of the hair feather gals was on our LAX-bound flight.

Where can you get feathered and tinseled here in Temecula? Element Salon was one of the earliest local pioneers of this trendy-trend. (Element does great blow-outs, too!)

Also, the Fantastic Sam's near Baron's offers hair feathers (basically fancier looking fishing lures attached with hair extension beads, in a variety of sizes and colors) for $10 each (price includes feather and installation) or three for $25.

Sources for hair feathers and hair tinsel in Temecula:

Element Salon (near Bruegger's, across Winchester from Chapparal High)
39584 Winchester Road
Temecula, CA 92591

Fantastic Sam's (in the Baron's shopping center)
31867 Rancho California Road
Temecula, CA 92592

Monday, May 16, 2011

Two Cool Venues -- Gershon Bachus Vintners and Monteleone Meadows

A winter day at Gershon Bachus

So I'm watching The Soup and who pops on the screen but the unflappably professional Joe Vizcaino ("Joey"), Director of beautiful local winery Gershon Bachus Vintners, deflecting the "advances" (?) of the Real Housewives of Orange County.

I had the reception for my adult bat mitzvah at Gershon Bachus, and I cannot recommend them highly enough for a supremely special, luxurious event.

Oh, and did I mention....their catering is by Sorrel? This is no rubber chicken dinner. Nope. My guests were talking about the "adult grilled cheese" (with Chef Adrian's special house-made fig chutney) for days.

You'll feel like you're hosting family and friends at your private Tuscan estate at Gershon Bachus, while at this other cool location I just discovered, you'll feel like you invited them to your own secluded, edenic meadow.

Tucked away off Winchester near Benton Road in French Valley is Monteleone Meadows. I was honored to attend a dear friend's daughter's First Communion in the Catholic faith. They attend Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, which doesn't have their own building yet.

Ever driven along that stretch of Winchester heading out toward French Valley where you pass Fausto's Bail Bonds, with all the Hummers and other cool cars with "Fausto's" signs in their parking lot, then the Catholic church that meets in the Moose Lodge? That's Blessed Teresa's temporary home. (By the way, that is the new Moose Lodge location, and it used to be French Valley Winery.)

The congregation held First Communion for a bunch of children, and the mass was delivered from a beautiful lakeside gazebo at Monteleone Meadows. What a lovely setting for a special day.

This is a beautiful setting for a variety of events, especially weddings. I can't vouch for venue-catered food. I was at Catholic mass so I had....doughnuts and coffee, of course:-)

Gershon Bachus Vintners
37750 De Portola Drive (on the De Portola Wine Trail)
Temecula, CA 92592
(877)I LUV GBV

Monteleone Meadows
35245 Briggs Road
Murrieta, CA 92563

Saturday, May 14, 2011

My Ongoing Love Affair with Old Town Temecula

I will be so sad when this school year ends and our younger daughter won't be going to school in Old Town Temecula anymore.

It has been so much fun having her enrolled at Kid's World. We live closer to their second location (near Van Avery Prep and Hillcrest on Santiago) but I opted for the Old Town location instead because....well, it's Old Town!

Some of the highlights of being in Old Town several times a week with a preschooler have been:

* strolling down 2nd to MsChevious Boutique to check out what the mannequins are wearing (outfits changed daily)

* sampling old timey candy at the Sweet Shop

* picking her up early from school to have lunch on the patio at Palumbo's or Soro's

* shopping for fun girly home decor and crafty items at Farmer's Wife

I also happen to have a wonderful mechanic at Valley Auto Werkes, which is in...Old Town. He's right near CM School Supply and Campini's, and I just discovered that there is a gun store in the commercial space being Valley Auto Werkes.

No more boring waiting in the "customer lounge" while they are working on my car.

For instance, the other day, my car was making a weird noise (which the mechanic later identified as "metal on metal" in the rear brakes; uh oh! Glad I didn't decide to "fix it" by just turning the radio up louder.)

He needed it for a few hours so I ambled down Old Town Front Street, window shopping along my way to Cafe Bravo, which was hopping! I thought I'd stumbled in during a rush but it never slowed down. I sat there for almost three hours, just people watching. Many Old Town folks consider Cafe Bravo like a second office, and people were having business meetings, signing leases, working with their graphic artists, discussing school fundraisers, having post-yoga lattes, or simply hanging out listening to music (there was a violin/accordion jam session on the outside patio.)

Oh, and a quick Old Town tip: the newfangled, beautiful, brand new City Hall has restrooms. Just in case.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Get Feathered at Sweet Cheeks

Want one of those cute little feather hair extensions we keep seeing all over town? Sweet Cheeks in Temecula (on Overland at Margarita, near Costco, in the same shopping center with Wahoo's and San Diego County's Credit Union) is having a special "feather" event this Saturday (also known as "tomorrow"), May 14, beginning at noon. Call (951) 695-0826 for info and to reserve a spot.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Old Town Temecula Civic Center Fountain

Our new civic center is really something to see. They did a great job. I love the fountains, especially this big, interesting one. The other day, my five year old and I had a "girls' lunch out" at Palumbo's Ristorante in Old Town (4th Street between Mercedes and Front.)

Half the fun of exploring Old Town is wandering somewhat at random....though when my kids are with me, our "random" path always seems to end up at either the Root Beer store or the old fashioned candy shop!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Daily Temecula in Inland Empire Family Magazine

It's on newsstands throughout the IE now. Pick up the May, 2011, issue of Inland Empire Family to read Debbie Lavdas' ("Debbie in the OC") cover article, "Digital Moms,"!

(I'm on page 42.)

You can also read online (click on the picture of the magazine in the upper right hand corner to read the entire current issue), or click the "Archives" tab to access all past issues.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Yelpin' in Temecula

Are you on Yelp yet?

If not, I highly suggest it. Yelp began as a community-generated site to share reviews of restaurants, but nowadays there are businesses of every stripe available so you can do your homework before you pull out your wallet.

I enjoy both reading and writing Yelp reviews. Feel free to follow me on Yelp and you'll get updates when I post new reviews.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Glen Ivy

It's been decades (literally) since I "took the waters" at Glen Ivy, and I can't believe all that I've been missing.

If you have never been, now's the time, since spring is perfect weather (warm, but not too hot) and their grounds look incredibly lush and colorful.

Did you know Glen Ivy has been around since 1860? Wow! They also have spa locations in Brea and Valencia, but since you're reading DAILY TEMECULA, we'll stay local.

You may want to check out my Yelp review, and also, here are a few of my tips for a day of Glen Ivy fun and relaxation:

* Bring a friend or three. This is definitely a social spa experience
* Bring flip flops. I made the mistake of wearing Ugg boots, so I didn't have anything easy to slip on for lunch and walking from area to area within the grounds
* Bring a hat or visor.
* Bring sunscreen!
* Towels are provided, but if you like a cushier beach size towel, bring your own.
* Definitely eat at the restaurant. They have a very large menu and everything is made fresh to order.
* Wear an old bathing suit because the red mud does stain. Leave jewelry at home because the sulfur will tarnish some metals. (Or you can be like me and LOSE your jewelry for several frantic moments! Though luckily my favorite heart-shaped pendant, which I wear 24/7/365, was saved by a wonderful honest soul and turned in to Lost and Found.)
* Don't feel the need to book a bunch of treatments, especially if you're on a budget. They do offer a full menu of services (massages, facials etc) but there is easily a day's worth of relaxation to be had from the myriad pools and Club Mud included with your entry admission.
* Check out regularly-updated specials, sign up for their email list and Facebook page for additional deals, and plan your visit for weekdays if you want to pay a lower entry cost. They also offer discounts for seniors and Corona residents. Oh, and it's FREE on your birthday:-)

Glen Ivy Hot Springs
25000 Glen Ivy Road
Corona, CA 92883

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

City Parks & Recreation Registration Fair

"Don't do what Donny Don't does."
-Bart Simpson

Don't be like me and FORGET to register your kids for super-competitive enrollment activities offered through the City of Temecula. You will be stuck in wait-list limbo.

The new summer/fall catalogue of activities should be coming out any day now (seriously! When? I keep checking my mailbox for it), and it will have online registration dates and times, but you can beat the crowds and up your odds of getting into the most popular programs by visiting the city's registration fair this SATURDAY, APRIL 30, at Temeku Park from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This is a fun event for the whole family, with prizes, deejay, and giveaways, but the best part is beating the rush and hustling everyone into six months worth of rec classes.


* yoga -- if you do the Saturday morning classes, they are held outdoors. What an exhilarating way to start the day

* Little Learners preschool -- a WONDERFUL preschool program for your three or four year old. This was so popular they added a bunch of sessions but it still fills up every time.

* cooking classes with Celine Coussou -- she specializes in fresh, simple, and local. If she offers her farmer's market tour with cooking class (you cook what you bought that morning), do it! It is a not-miss.

* etiquette classes with Angela Sturdivant -- so much fun! They drink tea and learn how to keep their elbows off the table.

SWIMMING: the city's aquatics program has a separate enrollment process. A tip: on the last day of each session, the kids have fun at the end either with fountains (Chaparral High) or water slides (CRC.) If your kids are dead set on going down the slide, enroll them at CRC. But if you want CRC and don't get it, console them by knowing the fountains at Chaparral are probably the aquatic program's best kept secret. They seriously never turn these things on except for the last day of rec class session, so nobody even knows they're there.

Spring Dos in Temecula

All across the Temecula Valley there is so much to do now! Spring is THE hot time for galas, silent auctions, golf tournaments, and every type of fundraiser you could imagine.

If you have time, here are a few great events for worthy causes coming up in the next few weeks:


Check out Taste of Temecula Valley this Saturday, April 30, beginning at 11:00 a.m. The party continues with local faves Aunt Kizzy's Boys into the night. This is the inaugural year for this event, which will be held at the new Old Town Temecula Civic Center (if you haven't seen it yet, you must!) in Old Town.


Spring is an ideal time to check out the Santa Rosa Plateau, and the garden tour (also on Saturday, April 30) is a wonderful opportunity to be a welcome "looky-loo" into some beautiful gardens adjacent to the open space. Go to the Santa Rosa Plateau Foundation's site for more information and to buy advance tickets.


Mark your calendars: this very popular event for the entire family will be May 21! Go to Slow Food's site to buy presale tickets. Proceeds benefit the school gardens program in our Temecula Unified School District schools.

Sunday, April 24, 2011


Mwah! That is me, giving YOU, my Temecula Valley peeps, a huge hug and kiss. I missed you guys.

Daily Temecula is back. Honestly I can't say it's "better, stronger, faster," since all I did was a few behind-the-scenes technical things so readers can actually find us, but hey, here we are...