Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, July 29, 2017

MVNews this week:  Page B:2

Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 29, 2017 
Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 29, 2017 
Jeff’s Book PicsBy Jeff Brown FAMILY MATTERS By Marc Garlett 

Henry David Thoreau: A Life by 

in the human heedlessness around 

Laura Dassow Walls 

him.“The Thoreau I sought was not in any“Walden. Yesterday I came here to live.”

book, so I wrote this one,” says Walls. TheThat entry from the journal of Henry

result is a Thoreau unlike any seen since heDavid Thoreau, and the intellectual 

walked the streets of Concord, a Thoreau 
journey it began, would by themselves

for our time and all time. 
be enough to place Thoreau in theAmerican pantheon. His attempt to “live

Boy’s Life Mass Market by Robert 

deliberately” in a small woods at the


edge of his hometown of Concord has

Don’t miss the thrilling novel from abeen a touchstone for individualists and 

award-winning author McCammon, 
seekers since the publication of Walden

in a book that Publishers Weekly callsin 1854.But there was much more to 

“both a mystery that will satisfy theThoreau than his brief experiment in

most finicky aficionado and a boisterousliving at Walden Pond. A member of the

travelogue.”Zephyr, Alabama, is an idyllicvibrant intellectual circle centered on 

hometown for eleven-year-old Cory 
his neighbor Ralph Waldo Emerson, he

Mackenson—a place where monsters 
was also an ardent naturalist, a manual 

swim the river deep and friends are forever.
laborer and inventor, a radical political

Then, one cold spring morning, Cory andactivist, and more. Two hundred years

his father witness a car plunge into a lake—
after his birth, and two generations

and a desperate rescue attempt brings hisafter the last full-scale biography, Walls

father face-to-face with a terrible vision of 
restores Henry David Thoreau to us in

death that will haunt him forever. As Coryall his profound, inspiring complexity.

struggles to understand his father’s pain,
Walls traces the full arc of Thoreau’s life, 

his eyes are slowly opened to the forcesfrom his early days in the intellectual

of good and evil that are manifested inhothouse of Concord, when the 

Zephyr. From an ancient, mystical womanAmerican experiment still felt fresh and

who can hear the dead and bewitch the 
precarious, and “America was a family

living, to a violent clan of moonshiners,
affair, earned by one generation and 

Cory must confront the secrets that hideabout to pass to the next.” By the time he

in the shadows of his hometown—for his 
died in 1862, at only forty-four , Thoreau

father’s sanity and his own life hang in thehad witnessed the transformation of his 

balance.A wonderful book! 
world from a community of farmers andartisans into a bustling, interconnected

There Is a River: The Story of Edgar

commercial nation. What did that 

Cayce by Thomas Sugrue 

portend for the contemplative individual

A new edition of the landmark, worldwide 
and abundant, wild nature that Thoreau 

bestseller on the life of the famed medical 
celebrated?Drawing on Thoreau’s copious

clairvoyant and founding father of thewritings, published and unpublished,

New Age: Edgar Cayce.Edgar Cayce (1877Walls 
presents a Thoreau vigorously alive

1945) is known to millions today as thein all his quirks and contradictions: the

grandfather of the New Age. A medical 
young man shattered by the sudden death

clairvoyant, psychic, and Christian mystic,
of his brother; the ambitious Harvard 

Cayce provided medical, psychological,
College student; the ecstatic visionary

and spiritual advice to thousands of peoplewho closed Walden with an account of 

who swore by the effectiveness of his 
the regenerative power of the Cosmos.

trance-based readings.But Cayce was notWe meet the man whose belief in human 

always a household name. When a young,

freedom and the value of labor made 
him an uncompromising abolitionist; the solitarywalker who found society in nature, but also foundhis own nature in the society of which he was a deeplyinterwoven part. And, running through it all, Thoreauthe passionate naturalist, who, long before the age ofenvironmentalism, saw tragedy for future generations 

skeptical journalist named Thomas Sugruefirst met Cayce in 1927 the world had not yet heard ofthe “sleeping prophet.” During years of unique access,
Sugrue completed his landmark biography, which onits publication in 1942 brought national attention toCayce and stands as the sole record written during theseer’s lifetime. 


Most Americans do not have a simple will as part of theirestate plan. You might believe that a will is only for therich and famous, and not the average person who has afar smaller net worth. Or, you may think that a will isentirely unnecessary if you have a trust, jointly ownedproperty, or have named beneficiaries on your insurance.

So, to the question of the day – do you really need awill? The short answer is “yes.” In fact, everyone who ownsanything - no matter how much or how little - shouldhave a will. This is because a will puts you in charge ofdirecting your wishes and the distribution of assets uponyour death. Without a will or other estate plan you forfeitcontrol and state law determine who gets what after yourdeath. Even if you have a trust, jointly owned property,
or have named beneficiaries on your insurance, a will iscritically important as a “backup” plan.

As a practical matter, the simpler your affairs are (andthe fewer assets you own) the less complicated your willand overall estate plan needs to be. But keep in mind,
it does not take much to complicate your estate, legallyspeaking. For example, if you have minor children youmust name a guardian for those children in the event ofyour death – and not only in your will as most traditionalestate plans do, that leaves holes which could cause yourminor children to be placed into temporary foster care,
something which no parent wants.

Many people believe if they have made beneficiarydesignations on life insurance policies, property deedsor retirement accounts that a will is not necessary at all.
While it is true those particular designations ensure the 

people you intended receive benefits or inherit thoseassets, the distribution stops there. If there are otherassets you own - such as a car, a china set, or jewelry forexamples - or if you would like to give part of your estateto a charitable organization, a will becomes essential.

Furthermore, when a person dies without a will(referred to as intestate), the estate goes into probate.
Probate is a judicial process by which the court decidesthe rightful heirs and distribution of the assets of adeceased person. Going through probate without a willcan be both more time consuming and expensive than itis with a will. This is because your will can waive certainprobate requirements (like having the executor post abond or obtain judicial approval to have an estate sale).
And again, probate without a will follows the state’sintestacy laws which may likely result in a less-thanperfect 
split of assets that may not be in line with thedeceased’s wishes and often leaves many surviving lovedones unhappy.

Family dynamics also play a part in estate planning,
something state intestacy laws do not account for. Manypeople have blended families. There may have beensecond or third marriages. Older couples may choose tocohabitate after a death or divorce and never legally getmarried. You may have to treat your children differentlyon current accounts due to distance, and without a will, 
those assets will not be distributed equitably.

It is important to note that a will can also include a nocontest clause, reducing the likelihood of potential heirsarguing over its contents.

Creating a will as part of your estate plan is primarilyabout passing your wealth to your loved ones after youdie since a will only “works” after it’s gone throughthe probate court process. A will gives you bothindependence and control of what happens to your assetsafter your death. Instead of leaving the distribution ofyour property to California’s intestacy laws, a will canput your wishes down on paper and direct a selectedperson to carry out your desires exactly as expressed.
But before you decide a will is all you need, read myarticle next week to learn more about another, more 
comprehensive strategy -- the revocable living trust.

Dedicated to empowering your family, building yourwealth, and securing your legacy, 

A local attorney and father, Marc Garlett is on a missionto help parents protect what they love most. His office is 
located at 49 S. Baldwin Ave., Ste. G, Sierra Madre, CA 
91024. Schedule an appointment to sit down and talk aboutensuring a legacy of love and financial security for yourfamily by calling 626.587.3058 or visit www.GarlettLaw.
com for more information. 


The latest on Business News, Trends and Techniques 

By La Quetta M. Shamblee, MBA 

Now that you have had almost a full month to compileand review information from your first six months ofoperations, are you satisfied with what you have beenable to accomplish with your business this year? At 
the start of the year when you envisioned what wasahead, certainly you envisioned where you wouldlike to be at year’s end. Now is an ideal time to review 
your progress and update your gameplan to take youthrough the rest of the year.

Begin with a review of your current goals and plansfor this year, then determine if you have reached themilestones you noted for the first half of the year? If 
yes, pat yourself on the back. Congratulations are stillin order if you have taken steps to make progress thatwas meaningful and measurable. You may not havehit the mark yet, but if you have moved closer to yourgoals, you can feel confident that you are on the righttrack. Now it’s time to assess where you are now inrelation to those goals, then recommit to the ones thatremain relevant to your business success. It is equallyimportant to remove the goals from the list that are nolonger relevant to what you want or what you’re willingto do. 

Win or lose, after every professional sportscompetition, there is some type of review process andanalysis. Whether it is an individual or team sport, allathletes understand the importance of taking a look atwhat they did, and how they performed throughoutthe competition. This process always begins with thepost-competition reflection that happens immediatelyfollowing the game.

Coaches and player alike are bombarded withquestions as soon as the game has ended, and usuallybefore they can make it off of the field of play. It is a 

good idea to conduct the same type of “on the spot”
interview with yourself to reflect on your performanceas an entrepreneur, and be attentive to how you feelabout how you executed your plan? What was done 
well? What can be done better? Is the outcome 

How is the business doing financially? Anyimportant trends with sales so far this year? When arethey higher or lower, and are you able to identify whatis causing the fluctuation? Most importantly, what is 
the profit for the year? If you are unable to answer thefinancial questions easily, do you need to upgrade youraccounting system or update your records to answerthese fundamental questions? How are you doing inother areas like staffing, inventory, marketing, etc.

The next step in the process is typically a moreformal, structured review that includes everyonewith direct involvement in the business. In sports,
this usually entails a review of game footage to allowparticipants to isolate specific plays and moves,
rewinding and freezing frames. It also allows for 
meaningful discussion about ways to improve nexttime. All entrepreneurs should schedule time toconduct a thorough review of each major aspect oftheir respective businesses and ask more indepthquestions.

Start by answering three questions for each majorarea of business operations. In what areas has the 
business performed best so far this year? What can 
be improved? What do I need to do and what am I 
willing to do to make the necessary improvements?
This review process will give you the informationneeded to propel your business toward a strong finishduring the second half of the year. 

Read us online at: 
Members of Sierra Madre 
Woman Club were treated 
to an up-close-and-personalperformance by jazz recordingartist, Phyllis Battle at the EssickHouse for the Annual Ice Cream 
Social and Concert event on 
Tuesday, June 25, 2017. 
Hands were clapping and feetwere tapping as she performedclassic jazz songs like Route 66and Fever. She led the members 
in a lively sing-along duringa medley of several songs shesang many times during the 16years she was a member of thelegendary 5th Dimension. She 
closed with “You’re A Classic,” 
a song from her Grammy-
nominated CD, “Night Flight”
produced by the late, iconic jazzdrummer, Billy Higgins andpianist Cedar Walton. 
Her performance was like adelicious cherry to top off asweet afternoon. 
Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: