• The 2012-2013 school year found Los Alamos Middle School implementing the beginning stages of a program called Restorative Justice.
    The Juvenile Justice Advisory Board, with help from Los Alamos County. funded the work with training in 2005, led by the Los Alamos Community Health Council.
    The cases were criminal in nature and generally referred by the Juvenile Probation Officer.
    According to JJAB Coordinator Ellen Ben-Naim, “LAMS is implementing a Restorative Justice program to address conflicts before they escalate into situations involving criminal offenses,” she said. “We felt like the program would be more successful if several members of the LAMS staff were trained in Restorative Justice.”
    The program is designed to handle conflict by allowing everyone in the room to be heard, while allowing the offender to admit responsibility, accept group sanctions and end by regaining a place in the community.
    This month, training was designed not just for those interested in the handling issues locally, but to those interested in the CYFD offering from across the state.
    Approximately 45 attendees representing Silver City, Lordsburg, Raton, Luna, Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Rio Arriba and Taos attended the daylong event.

  • It all started with the Hill Diner’s banana cream pie.
    A year ago last month, you may have read my column about local teacher, Valerie Adams receiving a surprise proposal after the conspiracy of the Hill Diner, De Colores at the Gate and few devious pals.
    Adams and boyfriend Tim, went on their first date to the Hill Diner. Recently, a new chapter was opened as the couple exchanged nuptials in the backyard of Valerie’s dad’s home.
    The story gets better.
    When the couple met, my husband Chad introduced his former Navy pal to Valerie. That weekend visit included stops at the Bradbury Science Museum and a spin around The Next Big Idea at Ashley Pond — and of course a stop for banana cream pie.
    The weekend was over too soon and after a drop at the airport, Val went to breakfast with her dad at an Albuquerque eatery.
    Feeling like a giddy schoolgirl, Val prayed that if she wasn’t too old to feel this way, she needed a sign. She also asked that the sign be pretty blatant because sometimes even adults miss the signs.
    Her dad took her to a restaurant in Albuquerque called Tim’s place.
    Tim is a lovely young man with Down’s Syndrome and the owner of the restaurant where their motto is, “World’s friendliest restaurant, serving breakfast, lunch and hugs.”

  • Great Conversations is an afternoon of appetizers and desserts and an in-depth conversation with a subject area expert. This is the Fourth Annual Great Conversations hosted by the Los Alamos Public Schools Foundation. It will take place from 2-5 p.m. April 28 at Los Alamos High School in the new building. This is part of a series about the conversations that will take place.
    “Developing Strong, Resilient Children” featuring Sandy Beery.
    What is the power of assuming positive intent? Sandy Beery is an experienced teacher and school administrator. She will guide a discussion about how the composure of the many adults in a child’s life will have a lasting affect on a child’s ability to learn self-regulation.
    She will lead a discussion about moving children from the survival or emotional state of the brain to the executive state of the brain and how this will impact their learning both in and out of the school setting. Berry is currently the director of an elementary charter school.
    She has been an educator for 20 years and began her career as a high school math teacher and has been a school administrator for more than 16 years.  

  • Great Conversations is an afternoon of appetizers and desserts and an in-depth conversation with a subject area expert. This is the Fourth Annual Great Conversations hosted by the Los Alamos Public Schools Foundation. It will take place from 2-5 p.m. April 28 at Los Alamos High School, in the new building. This is the first in a series about the conversations that will take place.

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of onsite adoptable pets waiting for their forever home. Others are currently off-campus in loving foster homes.
    Be sure to visit the Friends of the Shelter website, lafos.org, where you can get more information about volunteering, adopting and donating.
    Also check out the Petfinder page for pictures and to learn more about all of the adoptable pets, petfinder.com/shelters/friendsoftheshelter.html.
    All adoptable pets are spayed or neutered, have their shots and are micro chipped.
    Fly —A very sweet female Border Collie-mix. She is very shy and living in a foster home, where she is gaining some confidence. To meet Fly in her foster home, call 412-3451.
    Mildred — Young Lab-mix with a bundle of energy. She has a wonderful time running her energy off at the dog park and despite her small size, she enjoys the company of large dogs more than small dogs.

  • The Weidlinger Navarro Northern New Mexico Joint Venture made a $1,500 donation to the Family Council’s Youth Activity Center in Los Alamos. The Weidlinger Navarro JV provides architectural and engineering design support to Los Alamos National Laboratory, under subcontract to Los Alamos National Security, LLC.  The donation was used to upgrade the youth activity center with equipment including a new flat screen LED TV and to resurface badly worn pool tables. The Family Council youth centers in Los Alamos and White Rock are used daily by more than 100 children from Northern New Mexico.
    Pictured are Paul Martinez, executive director of the Youth Activity Center, middle; Jim Weeks, program manager for the Weidlinger Navarro JV, right; and Scott Den Baars, vice president for Navarro Research and Engineering, left.  

  • Charlene Cox-Clifton of Los Alamos, was recently honored by Music Teachers National Association as an MTNA Foundation Fellow at the 2013 MTNA National Conference, March 9-13, at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, Calif.
    Cox-Clifton, a nationally certified teacher of music, has previously served as the president of the Kansas Music Teachers Association, president of the New Mexico Music Teachers Association, president of the West Central Division of MTNA and a member of the MTNA National Board of Directors.
    She was named the Outstanding Teacher of the Year for Kansas Music Teachers Association in 1987. Cox-Clifton served as music director for the film series “Music Images” and was coordinator of piano classes and piano pedagogy at Kansas State University and Wichita State University.
    She presented “Teaching for Success,” at the MTNA National Conference in Kansas City in 1982. In 2007, the New Mexico Music Teachers Association presented her with the Outstanding Teacher award.
    The MTNA Foundation Fellow program offers a method of recognition for individuals who have made outstanding contributions to music teaching.
    The award is bestowed when a peer or group of peers donates $1,000 to the MTNA Foundation Fund in an individual’s name.


    Santa Fe artist Richard Tashjian has been a nature lover since his early childhood. 

    His initial artistic memories are of drawing on the back of his sister’s notebooks from school. Tashjian, a native of Massachusetts, and a second generation Armenian American, eventually settled in Santa Fe in 2001, after being drawn by New Mexico’s scenery, during his travels. 

    Now, at age 87, Tashjian has been painting for more than 75 years, and several of his paintings are of the red cliffs and skies of the Southwest.

    Tashjian’s experiences come from a rich and diverse background. He began his career in the Navy, during World War II, as an aerial photographer.


    The Reel Deal Theater and Pajarito Environmental Education Center will present two short films that teach sustainability through fly-fishing. For one night only,  “Jungle Fish” and “Currents of Belize” will take viewers on eye-opening journeys to South America and Belize at 7p.m. March 29.

    “Jungle Fish” follows three expert fishermen deep into the heart of Guyana’s rain forest.  They seek the largest freshwater fish in the world, the arapaima, in hopes of bringing a viable sport fishing industry to the native peoples.  


    Join the Pajarito Environmental Education Center on a journey to the land down under, as they view the birds of Eastern Australia and Tasmania through a visitor’s lens.  

    Bandelier’s Stephen Fettig will show highlights of his birding trip to these distant lands from 7-8 p.m. March 28 at PEEC.

    Australia is often best known as the land of pouched mammals such as kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, wombats and the Tasmanian devil. 

    But for those interested in songbirds, Australia can be an equally interesting place. Based on the most current DNA evidence, Gondwana was likely the birthplace of the earliest songbirds. 

  • The following restaurant inspection reports were provided by the New Mexico Environment Department. 


    Santa Fe


    Chaparral Elementary School, 2451 Avenida Chaparral

    Date inspected: March 19


    On Saturday, the Pajarito Environmental Education Center, Karen Wray Fine Art Gallery, Fuller Lodge Art Center, the Los Alamos Arts Council and Village Arts are teaming up to bring a new recycled art event to Los Alamos. 

    Re-Art will be from 10 a.m.-noon and will feature an art supplies swap, a recycled crafts fair and tons of hands-on recycled art activities for everyone to enjoy. Re-Art will be followed by the film, “Waste Land,” which will be shown at the Reel Deal Theater at 6 p.m. Sunday.

    There are several ways to get involved in this event. Those with art supplies can take them to PEEC and trade them to others. This part of the event is designed to give artists and creators a chance to mingle and a chance for materials and art treasures to be discovered. 


    Authors Bart Kaltenbach and Barbara Anschel, along with photographer Steve Fitch, have created a book chronicling the history of habitation and architecture in the desert Southwest with a personal slant. 

    They will be part of the Authors Speak Series, at 7 p.m. March 28, in the upstairs rotunda at Mesa Public Library.

     The area they chose is 1,000-miles x 1000-miles, from west Texas to the Pacific coast, Chihuahua, Mexico to Utah. The book comprises essays on architectural history, including details of all manner of materials and techniques right up to new, sustainable green buildings; a travel journal of the authors’ quest to document the many structural styles and variations across state and national boundaries; and photographs of unusual buildings: ancient structures to cutting edge contemporary residential and commercial architecture. 


    Los Alamos Family Council’s 8th Annual Fabulous Fifties Family Sock Hop will be from 6-10 p.m. Saturday at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church’s Parish Hall. 

    This alcohol-free, multi-generational yearly event is LAFC’s only fundraiser, said executive director Joyce Beery. “Families interested in a evening of fun will find it at the Hop,” Beery said, noting that in addition to music and dancing for all ages — including dance contests — activities will be provided for children.  

    An appearance by “Elvis” is a distinct possibility, Beery added, saying he would love to see everyone dressed in  ’50s garb. 

  • Brendan DeRoma, 6, of Los Alamos, tries his best to hold onto a baby goat during a trip to the Montessori Camino De Paz School and Farm in Santa Cruz. Brendan was on a field trip with his brother Gavin, to see where their food comes from. Every week, staff from Camino De Paz come to the Los Alamos Food Co-op to sell produce and milk.

  • There will be a mandatory meeting at 3 p.m. Monday in the Los Alamos Middle School cafeteria for all eighth grade students going to Washington, D.C. over spring break.
    The meeting is mandatory for students and parent participation is encouraged. Call Roberta Cocking at 505-670-0679 with questions.  

  • Selecting and preparing foods that are low in sugar, fat and sodium can be a challenge for diabetics.
    The Los Alamos Cooperative Extension Service, in partnership with the New Mexico Department of Health Diabetes Prevention and Control Program will offer a series of free cooking classes for people with diabetes.
    Kitchen Creations will meet Wednesdays for four weeks beginning April 3, from 5-8 p.m. in the Training Room of the Los Alamos Community Building, 475 20th St.
    Mary Beugelsdijk, registered diabetes educator and Paula Roybal Sánchez, Extension Home economist, will teach participants how to plan healthy meals and prepare dishes that manage carbohydrates without adding extra sugar, sodium or fat.
    The class participants will prepare and taste recipes and will receive a participant workbook and two recipes books.
    Each class is different and builds on the previous session so participants will want to attend all four classes.
    This program is free to people with diabetes. Priority for participating will be given to people with diabetes.
    The deadline for registration is Friday. After that date, the class will be opened to others including people with pre-diabetes, caregivers and family members of people with diabetes. Call 662-2656 to register or for more information.

  • Job applications will be accepted until March 22 from youth ages 14-25, for hiring consideration with The Family YMCA’s Youth Conservation Corps. The program will employ up to 45 youth in part- or full-time positions for work in the Jemez Mountains and Canyons.
    The positions are based in the outdoors, improving public footpaths. The Y is hiring local area youth from Pojoaque, Rio Arriba County and Los Alamos in fulfillment of a grant goal to build friendships among neighboring community youth.
    Crew member wages pay $9.90 per hour. The Y is also hiring two experienced crew leaders, which pays $11.90 per hour. Applications are available at the Española and Los Alamos Teen Centers, at the Y, 1450 Iris St., and online at laymca.org/ycc.
    No previous experience is necessary, however a strong work ethic is required. Job descriptions and complete information is contained in the YCC employment packet, so interested participants should review the packet.
    For more information, contact Community Programs Director Sylvan Argo at 662-3100, or via email at sargo@laymca.org.

    From a press release 

  • Non-traditional students in New Mexico at risk of not being able to afford a college education will benefit from $76,000 in Boundless Opportunity Scholarships announced today by the Daniels Fund.
    Colleges and universities in New Mexico receiving Boundless Opportunity Scholarship awards include: Central New Mexico University; Eastern New Mexico University; and the University of New Mexico, Taos campus.
    Funding is awarded in two-year cycles, so Boundless Opportunity Scholarships are available at other colleges and universities that received awards last year. A complete list of schools offering the scholarship can be found on the Daniels Fund website, DanielsFund.org.
    The Boundless Opportunity Scholarship is available at select two- and four-year colleges and universities and is intended for highly-motivated students seeking the next level of achievement in their lives, regardless of their life path.
    Candidates for the scholarship must demonstrate financial need, and each college or university may focus on particular populations from a list of categories established for the program. The categories include: adult learners; GED recipients; foster care youth; juvenile justice youth; returning military; and individuals pursuing EMT/paramedic training.

  • The entries this year for the Dog Jog Logo contest were “inventive and creative,” according to the Dog Jog Committee.
    The winner of this year’s contest is Kristen Carrara, a fifth-grader from Piñon Elementary School. Second place went to Malea Joyce; third place went to Makenna Ellsworth; and fourth place went to Paige Power.
    The committee chose to award 12 honorable mentions this year to the following artists:
    Emily Carr (a second submission in addition to her winning entry)
    Amaya Coblentz (and special recognition for her inventive signature)
    Kaylee Ellsworth
    Alexis Garcia
    Mirabella Guerin
    Elise Olivas
    Lauren Poague
    Neha Sadasivan
    Lily Shevitz
    Marissa Smith
    Sofie Vandenkieboom
    Carrara, as the winning artist, can look forward to seeing her design on 300 or so Dog Jog 2013 T-shirts around town this spring. She will also receive a free 2013 Dog Jog T-shirt with her design on it.