• Thanks to a roomful of pianists, jazzists, a foot-stomping blue grass group, colorful folk dancers, violinists, a violist, a piccolo trumpet master, and some great guitarists, for your outstanding performances last month in the fourth annual Music Marathon for UNM-LA Scholarships.
    And thank you, the citizens of Los Alamos, for supporting this good cause.
    More than 100 of you came to listen and donated some $900 to the fund.
    And we’ll thank you in advance on behalf of that happy scholar who will receive the funds.
    Thanks, also, to the Los Alamos Music Teachers Association for paying to have the piano tuned by James Beinke; to Robin Gurule for her eight gallons of wonderful green chile stew; and to Drs. Tom Csanadi and Marvel Harrison for bringing the delicious chocolate mint brownies.
    Performers were:
    Robin Gurule, piano with Peter McLachlan, piccolo trumpet.
    Piano students Karin Ebey (NM composition representative), Sonja Ebey, Natalie Crawford, Megan Crawford, Lucas Yeager, William Dale and Joseph Dale.
    Claudia Hilko, piano duo with Juanita Madland. Claudia and Bob Hilko then danced a Mazurka (a Polish folk dance) to Juanita’s Madland’s accompaniment of a Chopin Mazurka.

  • Welcome to February and the Asset category of Social Competencies.
    This category includes Assets 32 through 36 and is defined as follows;
    32. Planning and decision making — Young person knows how to plan ahead and make choices.
    33. Interpersonal competence — Young person has empathy, sensitivity, and friendship skills.
    34. Cultural competence — Young person has knowledge of and comfort with people of different cultural/racial/ethnic backgrounds.
    35. Resistance skills — Young person can resist negative peer pressure and dangerous situations.
    36. Peaceful conflict resolution — Young person seeks to resolve conflict nonviolently.
    If you don’t mind, I’ll put No. 32 on hold for this week, lack of planning on my part, and jump to No. 33, Interpersonal competence.
    For our focus this week, I’d like to highlight having empathy and sensitivity.
    During the course of the last week, I learned that one of our Los Alamos High School custodians lost his home in a fire on Jan. 15.
    While Tony Romero and his son were asleep, their house caught on fire and they escaped with just the clothes on their backs.
    Hopefully you know my fondness for custodians, the keepers of the house. The hard workers that don’t get celebrated as often as they should.

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home!
    Be sure to check out the Petfinder website for pictures of all adorable adoptable animals:
    SHELTER HOURS: From noon to 6 p.m. Monday–Friday and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekends.
    Also, be sure to check out the website at lafos.org.
    All adoptable pets are microchipped, spayed, or neutered and up-to-date on vaccinations.
    Aleah — A 5-year-old, spayed, female with the most beautiful coat! She is a long-haired calico. Aleah also sticks out the very tip of her tongue when she’s happy — it’s very cute!
    Antwon Cloud — Antwon Cloud is a 9-year-old, all-white Oriental Shorthair surrendered due to his owner’s health issues.
    Bubbles — This 3-year-old, neutered, white and tabby, male tricked volunteers into thinking “he” was a “she” due to his long hair and cute pink nose.
    DQ — An 8-year-old, neutered, male Manx who lost his home due to a divorce.
    Ella — This very pretty, 4-year-old, spayed, female, Siamese mix is looking for a quiet home where she can be the only pet. To meet Ella in foster care, call 412-0700.


    Feb. 1 — Pajarito Masonic Lodge No. 66 invites the community to join them on from 7:30 a.m to 10:30 a.m. for a Waffle Breakfast to benefit Los Alamos Boy Scout Troop No. 222. The cost is $7 for adults and $3 for children (6 and under). To purchase tickets contact Travis Moulton at tkmoult@gmail.com.

    Feb. 1 — Bradbury Science Museum Cinema. 10 a.m. Short science films ranging in topics from microbes to aquifers to addiction. The education level of these videos can range from elementary age to adults, depending on the video chosen. Visit lanl.gov/museum/events/calendar.shtml for topics of interest.

    Feb. 1 — “Eclectic is Us: Assemblage Works by Dirk Wales.” Exhibit runs daily through Feb. 27 at the Mesa Public Library Art Gallery.

    Feb. 2 — Cowboy Pancake Breakfast. 7-11 a.m. at Los Alamos Sheriff’s Posse Lodge, 650 North Mesa Road. Menu includes plain, blueberry, banana, chocolate chip, plus a seasonal surprise pancake, plus sausage, bacon, eggs, juice and coffee
. $7/adults $4/children under 10 years. Proceeds to benefit the Los Alamos Pony Club.


    The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home! Dogs and cats are great at chasing away the blues on cold nights, so come adopt a new friend today! Be sure to check out the Petfinder website for pictures of our adorable adoptable animals:


    SHELTER HOURS: From noon to 6 p.m. Monday–Friday and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekends.

    Also, be sure to check out the website at lafos.org, to get more information about volunteering, adopting and donating, as well as read up on some of the favorite animals and learn more about special needs animals, or cats and dogs currently in foster care.

    All adoptable pets are microchipped, spayed, or neutered and up-to-date on vaccinations.


  • The Los Alamos High School Olions will kick off their 2014 Topper Revue 7 p.m.  tonight at Duane Smith Auditorium.
    This year's emcees are Daniel Ahrens, Ali Berl, Ethan Clements, Katie Downing, Haley Henson and Richard Jia.
    "As someone still relatively new to Los Alamos, it always amazes me how engrained Topper Revue is in the history of the town," said Olions sponsor and show producer Rachel Saxton. "From my husband talking to me about watching Topper Revue when he was a student, to the owner of a local eatery telling me about the time he and his guy friends all got up onstage in dresses, everyone seems to have a story, or wistful memory about the show".
    Saxton added that it feels wonderful to now be a part of that history. The show is written, directed, and performed by the students themselves.
    Tickets for the show are $12 for adults, $10 for students/seniors, and $8 for the Sunday matinee.

  • Felt coats and mittens are soft and warm. Many shaped hats are felt, and nowadays colorful hats that are more freeform are all the rage. Artist Jo Thompson is indroducing felt-making in a one-day workshop from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Fuller Lodge Art Center.
    Felt has been used for producing headwear for many centuries and is perhaps the oldest textile material. Archaeological evidence shows that from very early on, people had discovered the tendency for fibers to mat together when warm and damp, many years before they learned how to spin and weave yarn. Felt is made by a process called “wet felting” where natural wool fibers, stimulated by friction and lubricated by moisture (usually soapy water) build into cloth. Felting leads to a fabric with no set grains, so it can be molded into forms, or sewn without concern for edges raveling.
    Thompson’s enthusiasm for making felt “magic” essentially began when she learned that felt is believed to be the earliest form of textile making. She headed for Konya, Turkey to study the traditional wet felt method with Master Mehmet Girgic in 2008, and subsequently studied with American Master Horst who influenced the development of her free form.

  • Lauren TenCate, a senior at Los Alamos High School, was recently honored as Rotary Student of the Month. TenCate is the daughter of Deb Summa and Jim TenCate, and sister of Emily TenCate.
    The Rotary Club of Los Alamos selects one student each month of the school year to honor as a Student of the Month. This year’s recipients reflect a combination of both LAHS seniors and juniors; next year, only juniors will be recognized in hopes of inspiring their interest in Rotary programs that fall during the summer following junior year.
    Students are nominated by their teachers and chosen on the basis of their academic achievement, extra-curricular activities and, in particular, their service to the community.
    Community service has been an important part of TenCate’s high school years. With particular interests in science and technology, TenCate serves on the Youth Leadership Team for Café Scientifique, a program for high school students interested in current news related to science. She is also a member of the LAHS NJROTC Cadet Corps and has been awarded ribbons for service to her unit and to the community, as well as for academic success and physical fitness.

  • Santa Fe
    Cowgirl Hall of Fame BBQ, 319 S. Guadalupe St.
    Date inspected: Jan. 14
    Violations: One low-risk violation. The bar floor area is not sealed.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

    Cowgirl Hall of Fame BBQ-Catering, 319 S. Guadalupe St.
    Date inspected: Jan. 14
    Violations: None.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

    Flying Star, 500 Market St.
    Date inspected: Jan. 14
    Violations: One high-risk violation. Prep refrigerators not maintaining proper temperatures. One moderate-risk violation. Dust accumulation on fans in walk-in cooler. One low-risk violation. Dish rack stored on floor.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. Follow up required on Jan. 22.

    Santa Fe Community College cafeteria, 6401 Richards Ave.
    Date inspected: Jan. 14
    Violations: One moderate-risk violation. Bulk food containers lack labeling, which was corrected during time of inspection. One low-risk violation. Dish rack stored on floor.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

  • The Santa Fe Science Initiative and the Santa Fe Children’s Museum announces the opening of the exhibit “Cultivate the Scientist in Every Child: The Philosophy of David and Frances Hawkins.”
    The exhibit was designed at the Hawkins Centers of Learning in Colorado and features panels describing the Hawkins’ work in science education and observations of children and teachers, as well as hands-on activities for children ages 2-10. The exhibit will be at the museum through Feb. 9.
    Originally from New Mexico, David Hawkins, a philosopher and mathematician, was the official historian of the Manhattan Project. After World War II, he collaborated with other renowned scientists to create the first inquiry science curriculum in the United States: Elementary Science Study.
    Santa Fe Science Initiative (SFSI), a not-for-profit organization, has been providing professional development for teachers in Northern New Mexico schools since 2001. SFSI brought the exhibit to Santa Fe to educate the community and about science curriculum presently being used in Northern New Mexico schools and to enrich families’ experiences at the museum with Hawkins-inspired activities.

  • Taos has been named by USA Today as both its No.1 “Novel Retirement Destination” in the United States and the top location among a list of the 10 best “Guy Ski Resort Trips” in the world.
     One of the original art colonies in the U.S., Taos grabbed the top spot in an exclusive list of only four U.S. locations which Where to Retire Magazine, in partnership with USA Today, deemed a “literary locale to love”  — towns where Baby Boomers with interests in literature or the arts might want to consider for retirement.
    Aspiring writers come from all over the world to attend the annual Taos Summer Writer’s Conference in Taos, which will be from July 13–20.
    “The sky is really blue, the edges of things are really clear and delineated, and that’s one reason artists like it,” said Sharon Oard Warner, a professor at the University of New Mexico and founding director of the Taos Summer Writers’ Conference.

  • The Society of the Muse of the Southwest (SOMOS) in Taos will host the next leg of reading and book signing event with internationally known former CIA agent, Valerie Plame Wilson, 7 p.m. Feb. 7.
    Plame will read from her latest espionage thriller, “Blowback,” at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House.

    Following the reading, Managing Editor of the Taos News, Joan Livingston, will interview Plame about the book and her days as a CIA ops officer.

    “I have always been alarmed by how women in the CIA are treated in popular culture,” Plame said. “They are generally depicted as obtaining intelligence through sexual favors or accomplished gun-play. The female characters tend to be one-dimensional and, to my mind, almost always verging on cartoonish. I wanted to change that perception and create a female character that was intelligent, strong-willed, and much more realistic than what we have seen thus far.”  

  • Tens of thousands of people from all around the world are expected to participate in the 17th annual Great Backyard Bird Count this February.
    With that in mind, PEEC has planned a fun-filled February with many bird-themed activities for all ages. From children’s crafts and activities, to an adult bird identification class, to a family birding weekend at Bosque del Apache, PEEC wants the community to be ready to join the count.
    On Feb. 3 and 10, PEEC’s regular Nature Playtimes, sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Mexico, will be transformed to fit the birding theme. Toddlers, preschoolers and their caregivers will have the chance to participate in fun bird-themed activities, crafts and story times. As always, the Nature Playtimes are free, and are from 10-11 a.m. every Monday.
    For the school-aged set, PEEC has planned a Backyard Birding Workshop from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Feb. 5. Elementary children and their families will learn how to set up their own yard or outdoor space, no matter how small, to observe birds. Participants will build a birdhouse and bird feeder and learn about how to create a mini-bird habitat in their own backyard.

  • The Los Alamos Visiting Nurse Service Hospice Program is having their annual “Daffodils for Hospice” sale.
    Proceeds from the sale support the Los Alamos Visiting Nurse Service Hospice program for terminally ill individuals. Daffodil pre-orders are being taken now through March 3.
    Order a glass vase with two bunches (20 stems) of daffodils for $15, a glass vase with one bunch for $10, or a single bunch (10 stems) for $5. Delivery is free with any $10 minimum order to a single address.
    Flowers will be delivered Saturday, March 8, or can be picked up at Daffodil Central (location to be announced) from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. March 6-7. Watch for location sales at LANB and Smith’s grocery stores those days. The sale is sponsored in part by Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Mexico. To place an order call the Visiting Nurse Service at 662-2525 or order online at lavns.com.

  • Las Aranas Spinners and Weavers Guild from Albuquerque and Central New Mexico and Las Tejedoras Fiber Arts Guild from Los Alamos, Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico, Tapestry Show featuring the Alphabet Soup Exhibit begins 10 a.m. Friday at the Fuller Lodge Art Center Portal Gallery. The exhibit runs through March 15.
    The tapestry show features the Alphabet Soup Exhibit, that consists of 31 small tapestries representing letters of the alphabet and numbers zero through four.
    The display came out of a joint meeting of the two guild tapestry groups when they decided to collaborate on a project.
    Twenty-nine weavers decided to participate in this project. Each weaver was assigned a letter or number and created a representational, metaphorical or abstract design using a color scheme of the weaver’s choosing. The letter or number that is the theme of the piece can be obvious or hidden within the tapestry.
    Additional tapestries from the two tapestry groups will also be shown as part of the exhibit. These tapestries vary in size, feature a variety of techniques and diverse subject matter.
    Both Las Aranas and Las Tejedoras Guilds were founded in the early 1970s. These guilds provide educational experiences to their members and participate in projects that increase awareness of the fiber arts.

  • Margaret Blewett grew up in northern New Mexico and developed a deep appreciation for this area. It is that love and the Pajarito Plateau that drives her to volunteer at the Pajarito Environmental Education Center.
    She first started volunteering as a preschool teacher, leading a class for young ones at the nature center, and more recently Blewett volunteers as a docent.
    Even at 81 years of age, she has plenty of energy to share with the community.
    Blewett grew up in Albuquerque. “I spent my summers at a Girl Scout camp in the Jemez mountains. It was during those summers that I fell in love with this area,” she said in a recent PEEC interview. “I went to the camp for many years, first as a camper and then as a counselor.
    She has taught in Australia for one year and then returned to Albuquerque, before moving to Los Alamos. She has resided on the Hill with her husband for the past 51 years. “We raised our six kids in Los Alamos, and naturally they grew up to be New Mexico lovers,” Blewett said. “I especially love northern New Mexico and southeastern Utah, where I have spent a lot of time camping and hiking.” Blewett boasts she is the proud grandmother of 14 grandchildren.

  • I’m compelled to spend at least one more week on the topic of lemonade.
    Stopping at “Every Lemonade Stand: How to Create a Culture that Cares for Kids,” by James Vollbracht is a community read, to begin some small conversations that can make a big impact.
    The books are available for $10 at the Family YMCA and it doesn’t matter if you can attend any of the book groups, or even the final chat, which is pending, via Skype with the author.
    Even though I hope at least one of those free events piques your interest, I’d really like one of two things to come out of the rally of the troops.
    Number one is I would really like the YMCA to sell all of their books, so they don’t get stuck with any extras.
    The second is that I would like the reader to see that it is the small interaction that I’m going for, not what new program we can do for kids or with kids. It is what you, the individual do, to make any interaction with kids better.
    I thought how great it would be if everyone that purchased the book went on a mission to keep the book going. A meaningful chain letter if you will — are you old enough to remember the chain letter?

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home! Dogs and cats are great at chasing away the blues on cold nights, so come adopt a new friend today! Be sure to check out the Petfinder website for pictures of all adorable adoptables:
    SHELTER HOURS: Noon to 6 p.m. Monday – Friday and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekends.
    JANUARY SPECIAL OFFER FOR LOS ALAMOS RESIDENTS ONLY! The Los Alamos Animal Shelter wants to thank you for shopping and adopting locally. The shelter is offering one chance on a raffle for a $50 gift certificate to Pet Pangaea and a $50 gift certificate to Smith’s for each animal adopted from the Los Alamos Shelter during the month of January. This offer is only valid on animals that arrived at the shelter during 2013.
    Also, be sure to check out the website at lafos.org, to can get more information about volunteering, adopting and donating, as well as read up on some favorite animals and learn more about special needs animals, or cats and dogs currently in foster care.
    All adoptable pets are microchipped, spayed or neutered, and up-to-date on vaccinations.

  • Karen Wray Fine Art Studios is offering art classes for those who want to learn how to paint, but are not sure where to start or what medium to use (oils, watercolors, acrylics, pastels?)
    An Art Class Test Drive will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at Wray’s new studio space at 166 East Gate Drive, near the Los Alamos Animal Clinic, next to Yeaman’s Machine Shop.
    New classes start the first week in February.
    The purpose of the test drive is to get an opportunity to try out different mediums before signing up for the classes in February and invest in art supplies.
    Karen Wray Fine Art has offered art classes since 2009. The classes have expanded from one oil painting class to several classes in oils, watercolors, pastels, drawing and creative color and design classes. In addition, this winter, there will be a Thursday evening oil painting class for the convenience of working individuals.
    Classes are designed to cover fundamental art principles and methods, while having fun. The instructors are all professional, local, working artists.
    The instructors include Karen E. Wray — oil painting, Janice Parker Muir — Oil Painting, Allen brown — Watercolor Painting and Melissa Bartlett — Dynamic Design/Creative Color.

  • The Los Alamos Co-op Market’s “Shop with the Chef” cooking classes is back for the season to give local chefs the opportunity to share their love of cuisine, picking out the ingredients and taking participants through the process to the final product.
    Three classes are available for $15 for members, $20 for nonmembers plus tax:
    • Healthy One-Dish Meals by Emily Schmidt on Jan. 28
    • Valentine’s Day Dinner Made Simply by Co-op General Manager Steve Watts on Feb. 11
    • The Key to French Cuisine by Edwin Theodore on March 11.
    The classes will be 6 p.m. at the Los Alamos Co-op, 95 Entrada Drive. Registration is now available at the
    Co-op. Class size is limited to accommodate the space, so registering early will ensure a chance to attend.
    The Healthy One-Dish Meals class focuses on making a delicious, healthy, balanced breakfast and dinner using nutritious whole foods. Participants will learn with a hands-on demonstration, in addition to sampling the meals. Schmidt practices family-friendly, nutritious cooking and believes that “food is the answer” to being on track with health and wellness. Schmidt’s recipes are gluten-free.