El Cajon, CA
Broken clouds
Broken clouds:
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Articles by Cynthia Robertson

As people take one more bite of spinach-artichoke dip at parties and festivities, they might be asking if all the extra calories were worth it during this holiday season. What’s more, if they are over 55 years, taking pounds off can be even more of a challenge. 

All the recent rain and cold nights give people a sweet tooth. While chocolate is a must-have, caramel is a close second for its creamy, rich tones bringing back childhood memories. Le Caramel in El Cajon satisfies that craving with their creation of candies, sauces and other products.

Vincent and Christen Kugener are at the helm of Le Caramel, which maintains the tradition of caramel making from the South of France.

Big billowy clouds surrounded the peaks at Mission Trails Regional Park when Robie Arnolds, a teacher of fine arts of Valhalla High School, breezed into the Visitors’ Center. She walked over to where her students’ artwork hung on the walls.

“Beautiful day, isn’t it?” she said to the front desk receptionist. “And the art looks lovely in the natural light here. My compliments to Vicki DeLong, who is a master at displaying the work.”

Three women in La Mesa have tapped into the power of playing music together. The three of them strum their ukuleles in retirement homes and sing-along concerts to bring joy to others. They call themselves the Ukulele Babes.

Lorraine Whaley and Sara Megling started their group in 2010, playing together at the Kroc Center just for fun. Anastasia Berkheimer joined them in 2012. For three years, the women have played and sung at a senior living facility and a nursing home and, sometimes, at the Joan Kroc Center.

A light blanket of clouds covered the sky over the Creation and Earth History Museum in Santee. The full moon, peeking through a hazy ring, perched high in the sky. The night was not a good one to peer through the telescope, but stars and planets were still the highlight of the Christmas under the Stars event.

In front of the museum under falling flakes of artificial snow, amateur astronomer Stephen Grill dazzled the minds of children and adults as he talked about moon dust.

Grill picked up a miniature model of a lunar module.

At 10:30 on a Friday morning, the song “Bailando” by Enrique Iglesias filled the community room in the Lemon Grove Library. Margarita Fregoso led a dozen people in a series of salsa steps across the room.

A regular Zumba instructor at Academy of Performing Arts in La Mesa, Fregoso turned what could have been a sleepy Friday morning at the library into a vigorous dance experience.

Wherever he goes, Santee resident Walt Thomas is looking around him, noting the subtleties of light and color in nature. The natural world enchants him so much that sometimes he creates his own worlds—in mixed media pieces.

Having grown up on a Nebraska farm gave Thomas a deep appreciation of nature and the wide-open spaces. His imagination colored the world around him. 

As a professional travel writer, La Mesa resident Maggie Espinosa has had the time of her life visiting all sorts of places on five different continents. She has also written a book called “The Privileged Pooch” which features hotels in Southern California that cater to people who want to travel with their dogs.            

The Walker family in Santee has played an integral role in the city since the 1920s, when they operated a dairy and farm alongside the San Diego River. Though the dairy and farm of Fred and Marie Walker are long gone, the family’s legacy reaches into today and well into the future, with the Walker Preserve Trail having just broken ground a month and a half ago. Sam Walker is the only grandchild living in the immediate area. He was at the groundbreaking along with Don Walker, a first cousin and Denis Walker, his second cousin with his wife Sherrie.

You know the holiday season is approaching when Marshall and Sheryl Lozier, owners of Summers Past Farms in Flinn Springs, have their annual Holiday Open House. It’s a time for wassailing and munching on cookies while shopping and strolling through the pretty twinkle-lit barns filled with crafts and all things Christmas.
Last Thursday evening, a hundred friends and neighbors gathered on the pavilion as Jim Earp played soft music on acoustic guitar. Children tugged at their parents’ hands asking for more Hershey Kiss Peanut Butter Cookies.