Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, June 23, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page B:2




Mountain Views-News Saturday, June 23, 2018 

Jeff’s Book Pics By Jeff Brown


Tip of the Iceberg: My 3,000-Mile 
Journey Around Wild Alaska, the Last 
Great American Frontier by Mark 

From the acclaimed, bestselling author of 
Turn Right at Machu Picchu, a fascinating 
and funny journey into Alaska, America’s 
last frontier, retracing the historic 1899 
Harriman Expedition.In 1899, railroad 
magnate Edward H. Harriman organized a 
most unusual summer voyage to the wilds 
of Alaska: He converted a steamship into a 
luxury “floating university,” populated by 
some of America’s best and brightest scientists 
and writers, including John Muir. Those 
aboard encountered a land of immeasurable 
beauty and impending environmental 
calamity. A hundred years later, Alaska is still 
America’s most sublime wilderness. As ever, it 
remains a magnet for weirdos and dreamers.
Armed with Dramamine and an industrial-
strength mosquito net, Mark Adams sets 
out to retrace the 1899 expedition. Using the 
state’s intricate public ferry system, the Alaska 
Marine Highway , Adams travels 3000 miles, 
following the George W. Elder’s itinerary 
north through Wrangell, Juneau, and Glacier 
Bay, then continuing west into the colder and 
stranger regions of the Aleutians and the Arctic 
Circle. Along the way, he encounters dozens 
of unusual characters and investigates how 
lessons learned in 1899 might relate to Alaska’s 
current struggles in adapting to climate change. 

What the Eyes Don’t See: A Story 
of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope 
in an American City by Mona 

The dramatic story of the Flint water crisis, 
told “with the gripping intrigue of a Grisham 
thriller” (O: The Oprah Magazine)—an 
inspiring tale of scientific resistance by a 
relentless physician who stood up to power.
Flint was already a troubled city in 2014 
when the state of Michigan—in the name 
of austerity—shifted the source of its water 
supply from Lake Huron to the Flint River. 
Soon after, citizens began complaining about 
the water that flowed from their taps—but 
officials rebuffed them, insisting that the 
water was fine. Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, a 
pediatrician at the city’s public hospital, took 
state officials at their word and encouraged 
the parents and children in her care to 
continue drinking the water—after all, it 
was American tap water, blessed with the 
state’s seal of approval.But a conversation at a 
cookout with an old friend, leaked documents 
from a rogue environmental inspector, and 
the activism of a concerned mother raised 
red flags about lead—a neurotoxin whose 
irreversible effects fall most heavily on children. Even as 
evidence mounted and protests grew, Dr. Mona knew 
that the only thing that could stop the lead poisoning was 
undeniable proof—and to get it, she’d have to enter the 
fight of her life. The book is the inspiring 
story of how Dr. Mona—accompanied by 
a team of researchers, parents, friends, and 
community leaders—proved that Flint’s 
kids were exposed to lead and then fought 
her own government and a brutal backlash 
to expose that truth to the world. Paced like 
a scientific thriller, this book shows how 
misguided austerity policies, and callous 
bureaucratic indifference placed an entire 
city at risk. And at the center of the story is 
Dr. Mona herself—an immigrant, doctor, 
scientist, and mother whose family’s activist 
roots inspired her pursuit of justice. The book 
is a riveting, beautifully rendered account of a 
disaster that became a tale of hope, the story 
of a city on the ropes that came together to 
fight for justice, self-determination, and the 
right to build a better world for their children. 

Maneki Neko: The Tale of the 
Beckoning Cat by Susan Lendroth 
(Author), Kathryn Otoshi (Illustrator) 
kindergarten to 2nd grade. 

In a small Japanese village, a poor monk and 
his cat Tama live a simple life at the Kotoku 
Monastery. One day, a great storm passes 
through the village, and Tama is caught in 
the rain outside the temple. She waits under 
the eaves of a small shrine, cleaning her face 
and whiskers as best she can with her paw. A 
noble samurai is also passing through, and 
stops his horse under the cover of a large 
tree. But through the rain, what does he 
see? A cat with a raised paw, beckoning him 
forward?Curious, the samurai urges his horse 
forward. Just then, a bolt of lightning flashes 
and strikes the tree behind him, splitting it 
in two. The beckoning cat has saved his life. 
In his gratitude, the samurai brings riches 
to the small temple and the monk, who 
shares his wealth with the village.So goes 
the Japanese legend of Maneki Neko, the 
beckoning cat. And to this day, the cat with 
raised paw beckoning guests is a symbol of 
good luck and good fortune in many Asian 
countries. Susan Lendroth s retelling of this 
well-known legend brings warmth to the 
two monastery companions, while award-
winning illustrator Kathryn Otoshi brings 
them to life in the beautiful landscape of old 
Japan.Susan is a local Author. 

A Good Man, a Great Dad and a 
Loving Husband: Every Man’s Guide 
to a Brilliant Life by Bradley Brown 

In this book you will find common-sense 
approaches to help you to be a good man, 
a great dad and a loving husband. I have 
invested fifty-five years into researching this 
book. Like any good scientist, trial and error 
have played a major part in my findings. Wisdom is about 
learning from what we have done or what others before us 
have experienced, and evolving as a result.The 4 reviews are 
from Amazon .com.


In the 1980s, the late actor Alan Thicke played 
the wise-but-hip father figure and psychiatrist 
Dr. Jason Seaver in the sitcom Growing Pains. 
Following Alan’s sudden death in December 
2016, with his children and widow battling over 
his estate, one can only wonder what sage advice 
Dr. Seaver would have had for Thicke’s heirs. 
Alan collapsed and died from a heart attack at 
age 69, while playing ice hockey with his youngest 
son, Carter. Unlike some celebrities, he had a 
fairly comprehensive estate plan. But with three 
marriages, three sons from two of those unions, 
and an estate worth an estimated $40 million, the 
planning is proving insufficient to stave off family 

Stepmom vs. Stepchildren

 Specifically, Alan’s two oldest sons—Robin 
and Brennan—have been fighting his third wife, 
Tanya Callau Thicke, for almost two years. At issue 
was the division of Alan’s $3.5 million ranch in 
Carpinteria, where he and Tanya lived. The prenup 
states that Tanya would get 25% of his net estate, 
including a five-acre parcel of the ranch property. 
However, the trust—last updated in 2016—doesn’t 
grant her any ownership of the ranch, only the right 
to live there provided she pays all the expenses. 
Robin and Brennan’s petition alleged that Tanya 
demanded a larger portion of Alan’s estate than 
she was allocated in the trust and that she planned 
to contest the validity of the prenuptial agreement. 
Tanya claimed her stepsons’ legal claim was merely 
aimed at smearing her in the media, and she never 
had any intention of challenging the prenup. 
Other reports allege the petition was retaliation 
for Tanya’s refusal to allow the brothers to 
convert the ranch into a medical marijuana farm.

Breach of Duty?

 Tanya recently filed papers accusing Robin and 
Brennan of violating their fiduciary duties as co-
trustees. She claims they’re spending the estate 
assets recklessly, failing to pay her share of the 
inheritance, unfairly saddling her with taxes and 
other expenses that are not her responsibility, and 
failing to keep her clearly informed about estate 

 Tanya plans to file a lawsuit against the siblings 
if they don’t meet her demands. And her suit may 
have merit, as trustees owe a fiduciary duty to act 
in the best interests of beneficiaries and account 
for all financial transactions related to the trust.
Lessons Learned

 Though most of us don’t have $40 million in 
assets to worry about, this case highlights several 
important estate planning issues. 

 First, multiple marriages – especially with 
children from a prior marriage – are always at risk 
of going down the road of conflict. If you are in 
such a marriage, it’s critical to plan in advance to 
ensure the people you love have the best chance of 
continuing to love each other after your incapacity 
or death. 

 Second, even with a trust in place, it’s vital 
the document is regularly updated to ensure 
it stays current and doesn’t conflict with other 
legal agreements, like the prenup in this case. 
Please contact us now if your plan has not been 
reviewed or updated within the past few years. 
Finally, this case demonstrates that a trust 
won’t stay private if the heirs have a conflict that 
results in court proceedings. One of a trust’s key 
benefits is that it keeps the contents of the estate 
confidential. But if a dispute ends up in court, the 
estate documents can be made public, exposing 
not only your assets, but all your family’s “dirty 
laundry” as well.

 Proper estate planning can keep your family out 
of conflict, out of court, and out of the public eye. 
If you’re ready to create a comprehensive estate 
plan, contact us today. If you already have a plan 
in place, we can review it to help you avoid similar 

 Dedicated to empowering your family, building 
your wealth and defining your legacy, 

A local attorney and father, Marc Garlett is on a 
mission to help parents protect what they love most. 
His office is located at 55 Auburn Avenue, Sierra 
Madre, CA 91024. Schedule an appointment to 
sit down and talk about ensuring a legacy of love 
and financial security for your family by calling 
626.587.3058 or visit for 
more information.

All Things By Jeff Brown


My Friend’s Place assists and inspires homeless youth to build 
self-sufficient lives.In 1988, Steve LePore and Craig Scholz 
initiated a volunteer-led, mobile meal program to distribute 
sack lunches to the homeless youth in the Hollywood 
community. Soon the volunteers built trust with the young 
people and realized that youth are driven to the streets by 
abuse, abandonment and neglect by families and caregivers. 
The needs and challenges of homeless youth go well beyond 
the critical condition of hunger.Two years later, the volunteer 
group first opened the doors of a facility they called My 
Friend’s Place where they began to offer social services and 
creative opportunities in addition to basic needs . Today, My 
Friend’s Place is a thriving, professionally staffed drop-in 
Resource Center serving over 1,400 homeless youth ages 12 
to 25 and their children each year. Each year, they welcomes 
nearly 1,500 homeless youth between the ages of 12 and 
25 and their children. Many are escaping abusive homes, 
emancipating from foster care with insufficient skills and 
resources, or were raised on the street caught in the cycle of 
homelessness.Once on the streets, the necessities of survival 
and need to cope force youth to compromise their health and 
well being through high-risk behaviors including survival sex, 
substance abuse, illegal activity and violence. In turn, they are 
at great risk of contracting life-threatening diseases, developing 
drug and alcohol addictions, and engaging in disruptive 
behavior that increases the likelihood of juvenile detention 
and incarceration. Our primary goal is to lower barriers to 
service and provide homeless youth with the opportunity to 
improve their psychological, intellectual and physical capacity 
to reach their potential.In collaboration with the leading social 
services providers and educational institutions in the region as 
well as over 500 volunteers, we offer a free and comprehensive 
continuum of care that combines emergency necessities with 
therapeutic, health, employment and education assistance, 
and creative arts services through three programmatic 
areas:Safe Haven Program,Transformative Education 
Program,Health & Well Being Program.This is a wonderful 
non profit agency in Hollywood.If you would like to help or 
contribute go to or call (323) 908-0011 or 




Real Life Tips from LIfe's Instruction Manual


Who has time 
for all this self-
care? When we 
are busy living 
life, it feels like 
there’s no time. 
Only when we 
become sick or 
face a health 
condition do 
we evaluate 
self-care more 
closely. Disease is the body’s way of placing a 
limitation. If we don’t create limitations or a 
framework for wellness, the body will do it for 
us. The path to healthy living becomes the only 
one that makes sense. Still, there are barriers to 

 Does your schedule feel too busy to cook food 
or do a yoga practice? Often I’ll hear: “I don’t 
have a free moment to meditate.” Is it really not 
having the free moment or is the opposition to 
the quietude and stillness? It is possible that 
life may need to be simplified. To incorporate 
meditation or exercise as a regular habit, we first 
need the motivation and, second, the time! If 
the plan is to eat healthier to get nutrients from 
our food, then we need time to cook. Ultimately, 
creating simplicity and spending more time in 
acts of self-care will make us more efficient 
and more effective in our lives. It gives the vital 
energy that we crave. 

 It’s important to take a look at one’s priorities. 
If we are care-taking for others, how helpful 
will we be if we neglect ourselves? How is stress 
relieved without considered actions that move 
us toward relaxation and nourishment? It is 
often the case that we add more caffeine to get 
by or take a pill to relieve pain. Of course, that’s 
real life, but what would we do less often if we 
placed our own health above all else? 

 Yoga is there to help us build awareness. This 
awareness can provide stillness inside, help us 
evaluate priorities, encourage simplicity, and 
get us on the path to healthy living. Make time 
for yourself, it can make all the difference! 

 Consider bringing yoga into your life to gain 
perspective about what you want. Please check 
out what yoga opportunities I offer via my 

Lori A. Harris


I created the Gratitude Train App to help 
people who are on the go and want to establish 
a gratitude practice. The app is available for free 
in the App Store and Google Play. The practice of 
noticing to experience gratitude, remembering 
to express, and learning to dwell in gratitude is 
the most effective way to reduce your suffering. 

 A gratitude practice does not require an app. 
Simply record your gratitude in a small notebook, 
or an index card, or a slip of paper in your wallet 
or purse will work. The physical act of putting pen 
to paper is the very best way to practice because 
writing activates different neural pathways and 
stimulates the brain, further grounding your 
gratitude practice. 

 Let me share what I do, and you can decide 
how you want to approach it. 

 When I wake up, before doing anything, I 
think about the fact that I’m grateful to be alive. 
I do that before placing my feet on the floor. 

 I meditate for a few minutes each day during 
the week and longer with a meditation group on 

 Then sometime in the morning, I write about 
why I’m grateful. I give myself a bit of time to 
feel the gratitude so that my practice does not 
become rote. I allow myself to reflect and feel my 
thankfulness deeply. 

 Throughout the day, I have trained myself to 
notice places to be grateful. I practice by saying 
thank you aloud. If I find a 
parking space quickly, I will 
say thank you out loud. When 
I have a momentary fright, 
like being cut off in traffic, I 
will say thanks because I am 
very grateful that I didn’t get 
in an accident. 

 I remind myself that no 
matter what I am okay and 
it helps me get through the day. I give a genuine 
thank you to the bus driver, my secretary, 
the clerk and I allow myself to get excited that 
someone helped me. I find that it lifts my mood 
and the mood of people around me. When you 
concentrate on what’s going well, it enhances 
problem-solving abilities. 

 Finally at night, as I get in bed, I reflect on 
the day and note my gratitude. I encourage my 
readers to look for and acknowledge growth. 
When you do something well, it’s important to 
notice your progress; it will enhance continued 
growth. Gratitude is for everyone and can help 

 Did you like this article? Download the app 
and share it with a friend it is in Google Play and 
the App Store. 


Lori A. Harris is a lawyer and coach. Learn more 
about her at www.G 

Check out 

Peter Dills on our 

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