Together We Stand

 This year is coming to a close…  By any measure 2017 has been a very uncertain and contentious year in our country. The communities that we serve, the Conejo Valley, Malibu and Pacific Palisades, are more fortunate and less impacted by many of the troubles swirling about the rest of our state, country and even the world. But what does…

Thousands Unite in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

The community showed up in full force to support the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk in Thousand Oaks. The citywide event raised more than $60,000 toward breast cancer research.

Stand Up for Kids Gala Supports Boys & Girls Clubs

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Conejo Valley's 15th Annual Stand Up for Kids gala dinner and auction raised vital funds to support its educational programs and outdoor activities for the 4,200+ children it serves in Conejo and Las Virgenes valleys.

December 2017 Around Town

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County is putting out a special call for BIGS—mentors who can benefit from the friendship of a Little Brother or Little Sister. Some 150 youth in Ventura County, known as "Littles," are eagerly waiting to meet their BBSVC program role model and friend.

PRO’Active Pilates: Unsurpassed Instructors, Results & Customer Service

When it comes to Pilates, “skilled professional instructors and the highest level of customer service are essential,” says Laurie Walker, owner of PRO’Active Pilates Studio in Westlake Village.

Unwrap Significant Savings with Year-End Tax Planning

The end of the year is busy for virtually every household. With families preparing for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and the New Year, finding time to complete everything before 2018’s new goals and resolutions are underway can be challenging.

Because It’s Better to Give… 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Stop in to Brow Radiance for a wide array of skin and body treatments, including microblading, facials, cellulite reduction, lymphatic drainage (post-op), tattoo removal, waxing, make up, ear candling and aromatherapy. Receive a complimentary eyebrow wax or tint with purchase of microblading service throughout December!

Holiday Home Tours Open Doors for Local Charities

With Christmas just around the corner, two nonprofit organizations are once again presenting holiday home tours showcasing elaborately decorated private residences and more with the overall goal to raise money for local efforts.

Local Celebs Shout Out for Favorite Charities

‘Tis the Yuletide season when visions of charitable giving dance in your head. Wondering where to volunteer or send donations? Find inspiration in these local celebrities’ favorite organizations:

Ben’s Non-Traditional But Traditional Hanukkah Brisket

A braised beef brisket in gravy is to a family Hanukkah dinner as turkey is to Thanksgiving or ham is to Easter dinner. Frankly, as someone who has sat through many years of braised to death brisket in watery gravy or a Heinz Chili sauce concoction (instant heartburn!), I will tell you that I am not very fond of it—even…

Drive in Style with Bumper2Bumper

What started as a hobby more than 20 years ago has become Westlake Village’s premier automotive appearance shop. Conejo Valley resident Debbie Soderberg grew up in Alpharetta, Georgia. Her passion for cars, boating and horses started at an early age. Her southern charm and hospitality combined with her passion and knowledge for cars led to the creation of Bumper2Bumper. Debbie’s…

“The Nutcracker” Heralds a Season of Giving

Tis’ the season of sugar and spice and everything nice. This includes visions of sugar plums for Pacific Festival Ballet as they prepare their 24th year of “The Nutcracker” at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.

10 Ways to Manage Stress During the Holidays

Welcome to the holiday season—a whirlwind of gift-giving, marketing blitzes, holiday parties, family, parking lots and many activities that begin right after Halloween, build to Thanksgiving and continue gaining momentum through the end of the year. While this season is meant to bring feelings of love and cheer, it also brings holiday stress for many. In fact, more than 80%…

Big Brothers Big Sisters Brighten Spirits with Holiday Angels Program

Many of the children served by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County live in economically challenging situations, making the holiday season an especially difficult time for these youngsters and their families.

Master Your Money Online: Financial Websites to Multiply Your Know-How

Let me share with you some financial websites and the type of information you can get from each.

Local Animal Lovers Lend a Hand

Local animal lovers, including Darlene 
 Geekie, RVT, and her Veterinary Angels' The Little Angels Project team showed their support at the recent Let the Animals Live charity event in Beverly Hills. Look for Darlene, Sarah Fitzgerald, The Little Angels Project and their rescue partners this month at the Winter’s Wish Brings A New Year’s Gift Gala on Dec. 2.

Giving the Gift of Life

We all have difficult times in our life, so we're not alone. If you are reading this right now, that means you have woken up to have another chance to what we all call life, and a chance to clean our slates. What are we going to do differently today to make it better?

Thanksgiving Is My 
Favorite Holiday

Those who know me well might think that the fact I like to eat and cook and enjoy a traditional roast turkey dinner (I’ll prepare it several times a year) is why I like Thanksgiving the best of all holidays. While this culinary preference might play a small role in my choice, the fact is I think it is very…

Lynne West Honored by Big Brothers Big Sisters

The Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County's 30th Anniversary Gala at Las Posas Country Club featured a tribute to Lynne West, whose personal and professional legacy changed many lives in Ventura County. The event raised almost $150,000, including a generous $100,000 gift from the Moore Family Trust.

Ultimate Dining Celebrates 32 Years

Senior Concerns' annual Ultimate Dining fundraiser at the Hyatt Westlake Plaza featured delicious food and wine, talented entertainers, decadent raffle items and a night of fun for all attendees. Event proceeds benefit Senior Concerns' programs, including Meals On Wheels and adult daycare.

November 2017 Around Town

The 4th Annual Bridging the Gaps of Hope Gala event on Saturday, November 4, from 5 to 11 p.m. features an evening of magical entertainment to benefit the Center4Special Needs parent-founded nonprofit organization. The masquerade-themed gala takes place at Camarillo’s Commemorative Air Force Museum, at 455 Aviation Drive, in Camarillo. A cocktail reception, silent auction, dessert wars and more help to…

5th Annual Ventura County Farm Day: Celebrating the Land & Hands That Feed Us

On Saturday, November 4, more than 20 Ventura County farms will open their doors for the public to experience a day of agricultural activities and tours during the Fifth Annual Ventura County Farm Day. Agriculture is Ventura County’s No. 1 industry, with some 100,000+ acres of crops harvested in the county in 2014, according to the Ventura County Agricultural Commissioner’s…

Surfing Sparks Sea Change for Special-Needs Kids

A Walk On Water provides children with special needs the chance to do exactly that—walk on water.

What to Consider When Facing Divorce or Separation

When considering divorce or separation, many clients become overwhelmed by the prospect of radical changes to their family and financial future. There are many issues that immediately come to mind when the time comes to dissolve your marriage. Some are very obvious, such as child custody, child support, spousal support and property division, however, other issues aren't quite so blatant.…

Farm & Flame Fires Up Fresh Flavorful Fare, Family-Style

Heather Worrell grew up on a ranch in Texas, where she learned to smoke meats with her father and enjoyed eating the best BBQ at the Diamond W. Longhorn Ranch Chuckwagon Dinner & Cowboy Show. With BBQ in her DNA, it’s no wonder this Texas-turned-Malibu resident founded Farm & Flame, a local catering service and eclectic fusion menu food truck…

Financial Fitness: A Guide to Retirement Readiness

The common thread among the quotes from 6th century BC philosopher Lao-Tzu and modern-day Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s reminds us that achieving what we set out to becomes possible when we first imagine and then approach it with small, manageable and attainable accomplishments. Loosely translated, the goals you have in mind are indeed quite possible.

Ladling Out the Love

The Conejo Valley and its environs are wonderful places to live, but finding affordable housing for our homeless and low-income residents is often an issue. In fact, the dearth of affordable housing in our area has been an ongoing topic of discussion for nearly 40 years.

For the Love of Wine: Santa Ynez Valley Vintners Score Points with World-Class Wines

Our area’s many benefits include its proximity to Santa Barbara County, some 90 minutes away. Those who enjoy excellent Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Syrah will find the Santa Ynez Valley to be a world-class wine aficionado destination. In fact, the Pinots from the Sta. Rita Hills AVA are so distinctive, you know where they come from the moment you taste…

La Reina Advantage Spurs Girls to Achieve & Excel

The advantages of a La Reina education are clear. As a girls’ school, La Reina‘s educational environment provides girls a chance to thrive in the classroom and beyond. An average class size of 20 guarantees individual attention, ensuring students develop their natural gifts and excel academically. Our teachers are experts in girls’ education, and the results speak for themselves.

How Much Stock Should Be in Your Portfolio?

Everyone talks about “asset allocation”—spreading around your assets into different buckets in order to reduce risk. At the highest level, it comes down to how much you put in stocks and how much you put in non-stocks (such as bonds, real estate and cash). But how much stock should be in your portfolio? In other words, given that stocks generally…

University Village Chef Serves Seniors in Style

As the Food and Beverage Director at University Village Thousand Oaks, I lead our culinary staff that cooks for 500 residents every day, serving more than 2,500 meals a week at the continuing care retirement community. How do we do it? Here are some of my tried-and-true tips for keeping food exciting, tasty and healthy for the seniors in your…

Hope & Harvest Benefit Yields Record-Setting Fundraising for Families

Sherwood Country Club hosted some 300 guests at Interface's 4th Annual Hope & Harvest presented by SAGE Publications, where local community theatre group, Panic! Productions, presented stories of hurt, healing and hope. The live dinner performance, brilliantly written and executed by artist Elijah Malcomb, was the biggest surprise among many highlights, including the return of Andrew Firestone, to surpass one…

Being Selfless

The first rule to being selfless is loving what you bring into this world, and as the saying goes, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger." I would like to express my gratitude for all the volunteers out there that donate countless hours to causes by voicing their opinions, lending a helping hand or even contributing monetary donations. As Mother…

Giving Breast Cancer the Boot

Last October we devoted a major portion of Conejo Valley Lifestyle to the fight against breast cancer. Here we are a year later and the fight goes on. At a recent event in preparation for October’s month-long recognition of that fight, a good friend expressed a bit of impatience, exasperation and maybe some overload on the subject. In her words,…

My Health Studio Marks a Decade of Getting Fit

Turning a vision into reality requires many hands. My Health Studio celebrated 10 years of successful community building, inspiring others to get healthy and live life to the fullest. Owners Esta and Scott McIntyre and staff thank everyone whose help and faith continue to drive its growth and success.

North Ranch Country Club Members 
Tee Up with SCGA Juniors

North Ranch Country Club had the incredible opportunity to host 10 kids from the SCGA Junior program and enjoy an afternoon of golf with our members. Each child was partnered up with a member and played nine holes on the Oaks course, which was followed by pizza and networking.

Locals Unite in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and since 1993, millions of passionate participants have joined forces to take steps against breast cancer in the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer annual 3- to 5-mile walks each year.

October 2017 Around Town

Oct. 7-31: The Reign of Terror Haunted House at Janss Marketplace starts off the scary season on Oct. 7, from 7 to 11 p.m., at the Janss Marketplace, 275 N Moorpark Road in Thousand Oaks. In its 18th season, the Reign of Terror Haunted House opens for 13 nights, featuring more than 100 rooms, making it one of the top-ranked…

Enchanted Evening of Hope Supports American Cancer Society

More than 100 guests came together at Eden Gardens in Moorpark to spend an Enchanted Evening of Hope raising money to support the important work of the American Cancer Society. For the past 10 years, the Enchanted Evening of Hope event has raised more than a million dollars to fund cancer research and ensure the organization's ability to provide free…

Journeys of Hope: Breast Cancer Survivors Share their Stories

Cancer-free for 24 years, Harriet Sheinberg’s breast cancer journey began in 1986, when her younger sister was told that her tiny little bump was “nothing” because she was too young to have breast cancer. “The needle biopsy proved she was not too young,” Sheinberg recalls. Beverly had surgery to remove the tumor and radioactive seeds implanted in her breast—and at…

Beautiful Brows & More at Brow Radiance: A Q&A with Lauren Schroeder

Brow Radiance, a division of Natural and Pure, offers a wide array of skin and body treatments, including microblading, facials, cellulite reduction, lymphatic drainage (post-op), tattoo removal, waxing, make up, ear candling and aromatherapy.

The Byrds’ Roger McGuinn Flys Solo at Smothers Theatre

The indisputable music icon Roger McGuinn returns to Pepperdine University's Smothers Theatre in Malibu on Thursday, October 5 at 8 p.m. As a founding member of The Byrds, Roger McGuinn delivers a mesmerizing evening of story and song. From his signature 12-string Rickenbacker sound, to his instantly recognizable vocals on hits like "Turn, Turn, Turn," "Eight Miles High" and "Mr.…

New West Symphony Stars Shine in 23rd Season

New West Symphony, with performances in Thousand Oaks, Oxnard and Santa Monica, opens its 2017/2018 Masterpiece Series season this month. Kicking off its 23rd season with a tribute to Hispanic Heritage Month, New West Symphony’s “Grand Season Opening” Oct. 6-8 features favorites from Argentinian and Spanish composers, Piazzolla and Falla, as well as symphonic classics by Mozart and Beethoven. Renowned…

History Repeats Itself: What Will You Do?

Sir John Templeton, one of the world’s greatest investors, was known to have said: “Bull markets are born on pessimism, grown on skepticism, mature on optimism and die on euphoria.” The quote is dramatic, but helpful in illustrating market cycles. A heightened awareness of market cycles raises questions like: “Where are we in this cycle?” and “What am I doing…

The Sleep Shoppe Family: Spreading Smiles for 30 Years

Thirty years ago, a young man surprised his wife with a pickup truck, as she stood on the stoop of their home with their two young sons. Naturally, she asked, "What is this honey?" Smiling his signature grin, he replied, "Our delivery truck for the new mattress store I'm opening." A testament to their love and level of trust, she…

Oaks Christian Students Boast 100% College Acceptance Rate

Oaks Christian School is a nondenominational, co-ed, college-preparatory school serving Grades 5 through 12. The high school was founded in 2000. In 2009, the middle school moved into a new building, allowing growth for both the middle school and the high school. The school is committed to the promotion of academic excellence, artistic expression and athletic distinction within the context…


In real estate, it’s: “Location, location, location!” In stock investing, it’s: “The market, the market, the market!” We know that even the best of stock portfolios will likely perform poorly when the stock market performs poorly. We all remember the devastation on portfolios from the crashes of 2000-2002 and 2007-2009.

Pirates, Exotic Animals Steal the Show at University Village Family Day

University Village Thousand Oaks residents, their adult children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren kept a weather eye open for pirates, exotic animals and other unusual visitors at the retirement community’s recent Family Day. More than 2,000 residents and their family members attended the community’s annual event, set to a pirate theme this year.

Sharing Stories Sparks Hope & Inspiration

Each of us lives our own story. In one way or another, we are surviving or thriving. Last year while in Ecuador, I met a new friend, Karen Marie Dion, who shared about her journey with breast cancer. As we kick off this year’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event, so many individuals and families touched by the big C…

Cancer Support Community Paints the Town Pink

Serving about 3,000 individuals affected by cancer each year, the Cancer Support Community thrives on the belief that no one has to face cancer alone. “There is no other organization like us in this area,” says Kayo Matsumoto, program director of the Cancer Support Community Valley/Ventura/Santa Barbara.