Living in Southern California

san clemente pier, aileen brazeau san clemente, ca, life in san clemente

Some parts of the country have the desert and warm weather all year round. Other parts of the country have the four seasons, summer, winter, spring and fall. If it’s winter, you are stuck with cold, damp, freezing temperatures until the change of season. In Southern California, you can have all of those seasons, practically when you choose,  in one geographical area.

If you have never been to southern California, you may think it’s all surf and sand, and for parts of our area, that is true. But what you might not know is this. Within an hour or two, one can go from surf and sand, to skiing and sledding. Or, from cold, rainy , coastal weather, to the warmth and sunny weather of the desert. All of this with our beautiful mountains as a backdrop.

From San Clemente, you can take a quick trip to the Mountains and be in the sweet, mountain town of Idyllwild. It looks like an idyllic ski resort from somewhere in the mountains of Europe, yet its only a couple of hours away from San Clemente.Aileen Brazeau, San Clemente, Place to see in California

Love mid-century architecture? Then in a couple of hours the other way, you can be in Palm Springs. Travel down the streets where the old Hollywood stars bought vacation homes. The Rat Pack, Bob Hope, all had homes there at one time or another. It’s a great place to warm up from the gloom of mid March in San Clemente.

Should you really want an adventure, you could venture out of Southern California and head north toward San Francisco and on up to Lake Tahoe. The mountains are magnificent in Tahoe. You can gamble, ski and on the way back , stop in the wine country for some special vino and pampering.

I know, I am sounding like a travel agent. Really, I just want to share with you why I love it here so very much.

Happy February

Aileen Brazeau

Aileen Brazeau, social, charity, community,

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Getting Ready for the Holidays

I can’t believe that another year has flown by so quickly. Halloween decorations are up at the Villas and we are starting to plan our annual Holiday celebrations. There will be community events to attend, company parties, family get togethers. I love this time of year!

I was just checking out some holiday fashion ideas on the Elle Magazine site, and while some of their picks for holiday dresses are not something I would probably wear, a few of their choices look promising:

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I like both of these dresses, paired with the right jewelry and some pretty black shoes, they could be just the ones to get me through the holiday season. I will probably also need something with a deep rich color as well…It may be time to go shopping!!

Aileen Brazeau

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Merry Christmas From Aileen & Paul

We already held our big Christmas Party, our year is winding down and we are looking forward to a short rest before we get the New Year Started. 2014 is going to be a great year for us and hopefully for our beautiful, seaside community of San Clemente California!!

From us to you, MERRY  CHRISTMAS

Christmas Celebration at san Clemente Villas

Aileen  Brazeau, www.sanclementevillas.com

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The True Reason for the Season

an Clemente Villas Aileen Brazeau

By Karen Everett Watson

Gerontologist

 

If you’re like me, every year you fret and worry about finding the right gifts for those you love. There’s food to cook, presents to wrap and oh that shopping! I’m so glad I can find most gifts with my good old computer. But when I recall the best Christmases I’ve had, it’s not the material things I remember. It’s not the food. It’s not the decorations. It’s the love that was shared, the sacrifices that were made and the true blessing of spending time with those I love.

I know it is altogether fitting that the world should set aside a day to remember the ultimate love that was shared by our Creator. When I look around at the beauty of nature, the smiles of my Grandkids and the wild birds that serenade me each night, I wonder just why He gave the ultimate sacrifice of His Son. With that love in mind, I try to focus on the giving of myself to those around me. My aim this year to remember that focus each and every day of the year.

I think about my parents and how meager the gifts were that they received on their own childhood Christmases, yet they remember them with fond memories. Like Grandpa Walton who tells of finding an orange in his stocking and feeling like the riches child on earth, it’s simple things that really bring us joy, not the expensive items touted on television, but the gift of love and caring.

My fondest memories from my own childhood are remembering how Daddy would always read to me about the birth of Christ and “Twas the Night Before Christmas.”  Momma would make sure to have baked cookies for me to set out for Santa. I’d hang my stocking and dream of Christmas morning. Some years were tough, especially when I was in my “tweens.” But my parents always made it special. When I was 11, my Daddy bought me a second-hand bike. He worked it over putting new tires on it. He painted it and it looked almost brand new. The year I turned 12, again, I got a bike. Yep, it was the same one, only painted a different color with an added basket on the handle bars. I wouldn’t have traded that bike for any in the whole world.

So, I won’t be spending a lot of money this year. I will share the things I love, especially with my grandchildren. I did buy them some books that I loved when I was young. All of them are classics that brought me such joy. I will encourage them to always trust God, to appreciate the world He created and to have a giving nature to all people who come their way. Giving is the secret to happiness – along with being grateful for everything we have.

So, my wish for you and everyone in this world is to appreciate each other, the gifts God has given – it is the true reason for the season. Just imagine, it started with one small baby born thousands of years ago.

 

 

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Including All of Our Family and Friends During the Holiday Season

Caregivers for boomersDuring the holidays, we want to remember all of our family members, neighbors and friends who may be living in assisted living facilities or nursing homes.  Everyone wants to enjoy the holiday season no matter where they are and see their loved ones.  We have some  ideas on how to make this the best season ever for you and your loved ones!

Bring holiday decorations and put them up for them.  A special tree with tiny decorations or a beautiful ornament hung from a window will sparkle and make their room brighter.  Bring photos or albums to share with them to relive the past or the past year of “happenings”.  This is something that will bring new conversation and delight.

Find their address book, bring some special Christmas cards with you and help them with writing cards to their friends or family members.   For older family members, especially those in a nursing home, this can be a daunting task for anyone. Most of us forget that older family members don’t use social media they value a good old fashioned card or letter. In this age of technology, it does not seem many people do this anymore and it means so much.

Old movies and music can bring back treasured memories. We know that trying to spend a few hours talking to someone whose memory is fading can be a less than exhilarating experience. So how do you fill the time and still make a nice day for you and your loved one?  Find recordings of “old-time” radio shows or DVD’s of old movies that you know they like.  These can be found in specialty catalogs or online.  These will be cherished and listened to over and over.  If they do not have a CD or DVD player, consider giving them a portable one as a gift.   In this way, they can listen to things or watch movies as they lay in bed at night.

If your loved one is no longer mobile, would like to do shopping but cannot get out, offer to bring catalogs and help them choose items and place orders.  If there is WIFI at their place of residence, bring your laptop. Sometimes there are computers in the facility that residents have access to, go online with them, help them choose a little something as gifts for other family members.  This is a wonderful, caring gift that you may not even realize.  Navigating through catalogs or online may be impossible to them and giving your time will be so appreciated.  Offer to read to them.  This is another invaluable gift of time.

We have said this before, in fact it seems to have become our theme this month. Just please, take time to spend and  most importantly, listen to them.  There is nothing more appreciated than the gift of someone who will sit and listen.  A smile or a hug is priceless.  And, don’t forget, this is so important at the holiday season but is also something that you should remember the entire year.  Sharing your love, time and efforts are the most precious gifts of all!

Aileen Brazeau

 

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