Jonathan Taylor's Articles

11/21/2019 5:00 AM | 0 Comments

We call in Turkey Day but here's a secret you might not know: Here in Southern California some of us prefer… fish! Yes, that's right. According to the Food Network TV channel who did some research earlier this month, Californians have a Thanksgiving taste for an oven-baked salmon filet, ideally topped with roasted almonds. Salmon dishes are uniquely popular in California at this time of year, says the network, who dug into favorite Thanksgiving recipes in each state.  But whatever you eat, planning ahead for this special Holiday will make it easier -- whether you're the host, the guest, or you just want to get out and enjoy yourself. With that in mind, here are some tips on how to make this Thanksgiving as stress-free as possible, and memorable -- for the right reasons. When You're the Thanksgiving Cook Whether you're cooking for just yourself, your family, or a whole retinue of guests, planning the event as far ahead as possible will cut out some of the pressures of ... [...]


9/12/2019 5:00 AM | 0 Comments

When it comes to home maintenance, routine is a good thing. That's why we have spring cleaning and so on. If you schedule key tasks for particular times, you won't overlook jobs. And the better you maintain your home, the less money it will cost you in the long term and the more you're likely to enhance its value. For example, a heating system service will cost you around $200 to $300, while a furnace replacement will easy cost you 10 or 16 times that amount.  One good way of ensuring you get everything done is to divide the tasks across different times of the year by creating a seasonal home maintenance calendar. Spreading them out avoids the overall task becoming overwhelming, making it easier to manage, Even though our fall and winter here in Southern California are not usually as dramatic as in many other parts of the country, there are still chores that work well according to seasonal changes. Since we are now heading towards fall, let's take a close up look at the sorts o ... [...]


8/30/2019 9:00 AM | 0 Comments

"Kindness" is not a word that easily comes to mind in these troubled days. Yet it is all around us. Every day, beyond the glare of publicity and the antics of hungry attention seekers, ordinary folk are helping others in thousands of different acts of kindness. Their deeds may be small in stature but each one of them makes life better for someone else. Sometimes, though, we pass by an opportunity to help another, not out of  meanness or lack of concern. We're just too busy, in too much of a hurry, to notice or think about it. But this month, as in every August for the past 31 years, there's a chance to put that right and to focus our minds on helping others. Be Kind to Humankind Week, which runs from August 25 to 31, encourages us all to think about what we can do for someone else without thought of reward of recognition. It was founded in 1988 by New Jerseyan Lorraine Jara after a boating accident in which a young man lost his life when passersby refused to help. Since then, ... [...]


8/6/2019 10:10 AM | 0 Comments

Keep it off the table. Don’t shout. And be courteous at all times. Ninety-four percent of us have them. And, on average we spend 16 hours of every day with them. What are we talking about? Cell phones. They're our digital best friends and we count on them to keep us in touch with other friends, answer questions, pay for stuff, guide us, take photos and videos – oh and a thousand other things most probably. But while they may be our most dependable buddy, they're also a tool that, if used inappropriately, can spread anger and frustration like wildfire.  We're talking about users who intrude into our lives every day with their loud voices, infringement of our privacy, rule-breaking and impoliteness. Whatever happened to cell phone courtesy? It went out the window with our consideration of the needs and concerns of others in our boisterous, noisy world. Not only that, but cell phone usage is also a killer – when devices are used to text while driving. Distrac ... [...]


7/16/2019 8:00 AM | 0 Comments

Get Your Summer On in LA! What's the connection between mud bricks, crawfish and yoga? That's a tough one, isn't it? But the answer is simple: They all feature in outdoor events in the greater Los Angeles area this month. In fact, there are hundreds of events on now and throughout the summer, celebrating our fabulous climate, our multi-culture, and love of the outdoors. No matter what your tastes, there truly is something for everyone. Here's just a sample from online listings of July events in Los Angeles: Music & Dance July 12 – 26: Dance Downtown for three successive Fridays at Grand Park. No dancing experience required but look forward to learning how to hip-hop, tango and disco dance, with live bands. Let yourself go, from 7pm each Friday. Free. July 13 & 14 – Paul McCartney at Dodger Stadium, Echo Park. It's the music event of the month, featuring the 77-year-old ex-Beatle, whose tour has earned rave reviews.  Need we say more? ... [...]


7/8/2019 8:00 AM | 0 Comments

Five Top Tips For Newlyweds Movie goddess Audrey Hepburn once declared: "If I get married, I want to be very married." She did marry -- twice. But what did she mean by “very married”? This is the time of year many would-be brides and grooms go through the same thinking process -- wondering what the key is to being "very married", in other words, happy and committed to a long lasting relationship. June is one of the busiest months for weddings. (Each of Hepburn’s marriages, by the way, lasted 13 years. And there’s no record of whether she thought she succeeded in her aim -- though she opted to live with her next lover for another 13 years without marrying!) Anyway, everyone has different tips about marriage success and they also know that all long-term relationships have their ups and downs. Your job, if you're about to become a newlywed, is to find the ways to keep your relationship on an even keel. Unless you've been together for a number of ... [...]


6/6/2019 8:02 AM | 0 Comments

Why Wedding Insurance is Important for Your Big Day Every year, around a quarter of a million couples get married in California. The average cost of a wedding runs to more than $31,000. That's an awful lot of people and an awful lot of money. First, it's exciting, then planning and organizing the event becomes daunting. But when the great day arrives, it all seems worth it. Or does it?  That depends on the couple, the guests and, of course, all the activities that are part of the great day. What could go wrong? Well, the more complex and expensive the event, the more risk there is that things could go wrong. That's bad enough, but if you're also going to be tens of thousands of dollars worse off, it's a potential disaster. And that's why couples and their families increasingly opt to take out wedding insurance. It doesn’t cost a lot but it can buy you incredible peace of mind. So What Is Wedding Insurance? Wedding insurance can cover most of the fin ... [...]


5/16/2019 8:15 AM | 0 Comments

Planning Ahead for Memorial Day Closures & Traffic in Your City More than 3 million Southern Californians will hit the highway on the forthcoming Memorial Day weekend (May 27). And they're likely to start earlier and stay away longer, according to some travel experts. Those 3 million are the ones who'll be traveling more than 50 miles. Add to them, the millions who'll be taking a short road-trip to visit family or enjoy the celebrations and  you have the recipe for the usual traffic snarl-ups and delays. Journeys that are estimated to take up to three times longer than on a regular weekend mean frustrations, frayed tempers, road accidents and breakdowns. Nationwide, AAA expects to carry out around 340,000 road rescues over the weekend. In fact, Memorial Day weekend is the most dangerous holiday for road and highway accidents, according to the National Coalition for Safer Roads. It's also a record time for speeding tickets and other citations. For instance, police ... [...]


5/2/2019 8:10 AM | 0 Comments

Top Tips for Preparing for Pool Season Are you ready to make a splash in 2019? That is: have you prepped your outdoor swimming pool for the season? Whether you're a longtime or a new pool owner, getting your pool ready and safe for the season is the best way of getting the max enjoyment from one of the most popular outdoor activities here in Southern California. With that in mind, here's a quick rundown on how to prep for the pool season in 7 easy steps. First, get your gear together. That means the tools you'll need, like a skimmer net and spare parts, and protective clothing for handling chemicals. (You'd be surprised by how many people report to the ER with pool chemical injuries). And be sure to allow yourself enough time both to do the initial tasks and for subsequent filtration and checks. If you covered your pool during winter, you'll need to drain any surface water, remove any yard debris that's blown there and then remove the cov ... [...]


3/21/2019 8:48 AM | 0 Comments

Making Nutrition Number One in your Life How's your diet? Did you resolve to eat healthier and fitter this year? Have you managed to stick with it? Whatever your answers, there's a great reason right now to focus on what you eat: March is National Nutrition Month. Organized each year since 1973 by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the event emphasizes the importance of choosing the right foods and developing good eating and exercise habits. Among other messages, the Academy -- the world's largest organization of food and nutritional professionals -- wants us to learn which foods are good for health, control the amount we eat, make food safety part of our everyday routine, and reduce food waste. "You don't have to forgo your favorite dishes in your quest for more healthful meals," LA-based nutritionist Cordialis Msora-Kasago tells us. "Consider swapping less healthful ingredients with more nutritious options." Nutritious Shortcuts For example, she sugg ... [...]


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