Monday, April 30, 2012

Jane Goodall is the 2013 Rose Parade Grand Marshal

Jane Goodall with the ubiquitous Mr. H
One of the neat things about covering the Tournament of Roses for is going to all the exciting events.  This announcement of Jane Goodall, Dame of the British Empire, primatologist, environmentalist, activitst, was especially enjoyable

Even seasoned photographers and reporters clamored to get their picture taken with her. President of the TOR Sally M. Bixby made the announcement earlier than usual. She told me, “We’ve known for about a year-and-a-half.  It seemed we ought to release it earlier in the year.”

She also said that it was important to her and her husband Harlan "to have someone who had really done something with her life.” 

I wrote three articles on the event, with the third one focusing on Roots & Shoots, the Jane Goodall Institute's conservation program for children, grades K-12.  Here are the links:

Roots & Shoots kids celebrate Jane Goodall as Rose Parade Grand Marshal

Monday, April 23, 2012

If anyone asks...

Elliott with his dad, April 21, 2012

I am not the kind of grandmother to whip out pictures whenever I bump into an acquaintance.  Modesty is an old-fashioned quality that suits someone of my age and experience.  That's why I have exercised restraint and not yet posted pictures of my first grandchild, born three weeks ago, until today.

Elliott Christopher Monteros was born on March 27, 2012 at 4:01 a.m.  He is just a little more than 100 years younger than my father, and he already has more hair.  He is the son of my youngest child.  He is beautiful.

I won't brag.  I'll let the photos speak for themselves.

Elliott on his first Easter

One hour old, March 27, 2012

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Who will the 2013 Rose Parade Grand Marshal be? Only 6 days to guess!

Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger, 2010
Oh, the Places You’ll Go—and at lightning speed this year.  Sally Bixby, president of the 2013 Tournament of Roses, is set to announce her choice for Grand Marshal on Wednesday, April 24, 2012 at Tournament House in Pasadena.  
Paula Deen, 2011

Since this announcement usually takes place in the fall, I was astonished to find a media release from TOR publicists Hill & Knowlton in my inbox.  With just six days between now and the announcement next Wednesday morning, there isn’t much time for readers to submit their guesses.

So get on the ball, and email or comment below with your ideas.  Here are some hints (though in the past, hints haven’t always helped): 
  • The theme is “Oh, the Places You’ll Go”
  •  President Sally Bixby is only the second woman to lead the Tournament
  •  Bixby is also a registered nurse, the  first to assume the TOR presidency
  •  The official poster has letters that are reminiscent of Dr. Seuss and depicts a child with a bindle walking a rainbow path to rainbow hills
J.R. Martinez, 2012
Here are some of my ideas:
  • With the pink slip to the space shuttle Endeavor handed over to the California Science Center in Los Angeles last October, and due to arrive later this year, the crew on its last flight would be inspired.  After all, they did go places few humans have been.
  • Another thought is that it might be a person or group in the line of nursing.  Bixby’s colleagues are entering the first float devoted to the nursing profession in honor of her service.  You can read about it in the article “Honoring Nurses” that appeared in this column.
  • With the Jet Propulsion Laboratory nestled in the northernmost corner of Pasadena, and the Mars Science Laboratory due to land in a few months, the team that brought it all together might not be too far-fetched. 
  • A reader last year thought a good choice for the 2012 Grand Marshal would be Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly.  Not a bad idea for this year, either.  The couple presents the idea of a journey both actually—going into space—and metaphorically—recovering from a life-threatening attack.
So who's it going to be?  Let me know what you think!

And don't forget to check out my Tournament of Roses column on!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Altadena outdoors: Horses, lumberjacks, and earthquakes

Up close & personal with the mountains on the Rubio trail

A writer should never ask to be excused for not writing. But I have been writing! Just not on Bluehouseviews. Below is the list of articles I've written for Altadena Patch and Altadenablog since the first of the year. Other than that, my Examiner columns, and the writing group at Monte Vista Grove, I've been enjoying my first grandson.

Patch got a three-parter out of the Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group, which met with a representative from L.A. County to share ideas of what needs to be done to ensure trail access for residents. The first part, "Concerns Over Altadena Crest Trail Conveyed to County Consultant" addresses the trail. Part 2, "Altadena's Equestrian Future", talks about equestrian concerns, and Part 3 about bicycling.

What does one do with all those downed trees after a windstorm? Read "Altadena Heritage hosts urban lumberjacks (and they're OK)" on Altadenablog to find out. And check back next week for a follow up, "Managing the Urban Forest".

I wrote about my experiences getting Community Emergency Response Team training in "What Is CERT and Why Is It Important" for Patch. CERT teaches regular folks to be prepared for emergencies from simple first aid to massive earthquakes.

Of course, my Examiner columns (listed at right) have lots of interesting goings-on with Altadena, the San Gabriel Foothills, and the Tournament of Roses.