Christmas Memories

Argument was embarrassing for parents

by Carol Olsen

Mutual 2

I remember a Christmas when I was four years old. I was the only girl with three brothers.

Another family was living with us temporarily. They also had one girl and three boys.

It was fun, as we were all about the same ages. It was during the depression.

On Christmas morning, to let us know whose gifts were whose, our parents placed one of our everyday socks on the gift meant for us.

For the girls were two opened gifts, a beautiful doll buggy and a smaller more modest doll crib with wooden slats.

I saw what I thought was my sock in the beautiful doll buggy, and I turned away from the crib. My friend said the sock in the buggy was hers. An argument ensued. I was positive she was wrong. That was my sock!

My mother stepped in, and seriously scolded me, pulling me away from the buggy and showing me my sock in the wooded crib. She was angry, and said quietly under her breath how many hours my daddy had spent carefully and lovingly building the doll crib with the wood slats for me.

I saw that the sock in the doll crib was mine, and I didn’t care about the beautiful buggy anymore.

I loved the crib, because my daddy had built it for me.

My parents were very embarrassed that I had argued over their friends’ expensive store-bought buggy.

I’m sorry they were embarrassed.

I loved my daddy’s doll crib a hundred times more than anything bought in a store.


Simbang Gabi service is Dec. 22

The Filipino Association of Leisure World (FALW) finalized plans for Simbang Gabi, a Philippine Christmas custom of daily Mass, at its Dec. 9 meeting. Originally celebrated in the Philippines from Dec. 16-24, the FALW will hold its version of Simbang Gabi on Sunday, Dec. 22, at 3 p.m. in Clubhouse 1. The service will be presided over by Fr. Freddy Fajardo, a Filipino priest.

Everybody is welcome to the Catholic Mass with liturgical music by the Filipino choir. After the mass, a light dinner will be served for everyone to enjoy.

Experience how the Filipinos have fun during the Christmas holiday.

On another matter, FALW members agreed to divide the collected donations for the victims of the Philippine typhoon Haiyan into two categories, one for Sagip Kapamilya, emergency aid to the affected people; and the other half to Gawad Kalinga, which helps build Habitat for Humanity for a lasting benefit of the homeless victims. 

FALW thanks and appreciates the donors in and out of the community for their continued monetary aid to the Philippine typhoon victims. They extend their sincere “salamat po” or “thank you to all.”

The meeting ended with the partaking of favorite Filipino dishes and recognition of the December birthday celebrants, Mila Cruz, Winnie Diancin, Vilma Medina, Ana O’Brian, and Vicente Raagas. Vicente was the only one present.

Happy Birthday

LW celebrates with 100 family, friends

Ruth Passavant, Mutual 14, celebrated her 100th birthday with 100 family members and friends in Clubhouse 4 on Nov. 29. There was dinner, music, and dancing.

Ruth has one daughter, five grandchildren, 18 great-grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren.

Ruth has lived in Leisure World over 20 years and is an active centenarian. She plays bridge several days a month and is an active member of the Holy Family Church.

She enjoys going on the bus to the gambling casinos.

She danced at her birthday party with her great-grandsons as well as her favorite movie star, Channing Tatum.


No meeting Dec. 23 due to holiday

Chapter RT of the PEO Sisterhood enjoyed a lovely Christmas celebration luncheon meeting on Dec. 9 with 40 attending.

The PEO thanks Sally Fowler for her beautiful decorations, Taylor White, Carmen Walters and Carol Robbins for the delightful entertainment and Shirley Williams who catered the delicious luncheon.

There will be no meeting on Dec. 23.

The next meeting will be Monday, Jan. 13. The program will be “Knowledge from Nature.”

The PEO Card and Luncheon party will resume on the fourth Wednesday of the month. All card players are welcome back on Jan. 22.

— Eve Magnus

Spanish Classes

New session will start Jan. 7, CH6

A new session of free Spanish language classes, speaking, grammar and writing, will begin Tuesday, Jan. 7, in Clubhouse 6, Room B, upstairs. Classes taught by Dan Van Gelder will be held Tuesdays from noon-1 p.m. and Thursdays, 2-3 p.m.

Special Preview

Documentary film is about LWer

A special world premier screening of the documentary short film, “Memories of Pearl Harbor — The Jeanne Smith Story,” will take place in Clubhouse 2, on Thursday, Dec. 26, at 5 p.m. All residents are invited to the free event. Hui O Hula will also perform.

Leisure Worlder Jeanne Smith was 13 years old on Dec. 7, 1941. She lived near Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Not only did she experience the attack on Pearl Harbor, but she was alone taking care of three young girls for three days. This is her harrowing story, an extraordinary civilian account of the Pearl Harbor attack.

Jeanne will be joined at the preview by award-winning filmmakers Allison Lane and Chris Ritter.

A question-and-answer session with the filmmakers and Jeanne will follow the showing.

Residents are invited to bring snacks and drinks.

Information about the film is available at

Sunshine Club Sunshine Club

New class offered for speech clarity

Kuniko Okamoto, Mutual 2, is starting a class for foreign language speakers and stroke recovery patients, to help improve grammar and the clarity of speech, including accent reduction.

The first class is Tuesday, Jan. 14, from 10-11:30 a.m. in Clubhouse 3, Room 7. 

The charge for the 1-1/2 hour class will be minimal for copies of lessons and $1 per student for teacher preparation each week.

Kuniko was born and raised in Kahului, Maui, Hawaii. Her first languages were Japanese and Hawaiian “Pidgeon” English. She taught herself correct English and proper accents. She understands the problems foreign language speakers faces and the frustrations of not being understood.

Kuniko has an BA in speech/language pathology from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and an MA from College of New Jersey. The American Speech/Language Association awarded her the Clinical Competence Certification after passing a very comprehensive exam. She is also state certified as resources specialist, teacher of learning disabled (LD) and English as a second language (ESL).

She was employed at Stanford University Hospital’s Speech and Language Clinic, De Anza College’s Rehab Unit, Queen of the Valley Hospital (Napa), and California Veterans Home (Yountville).

She also did therapy in various school districts in Pennsylvania and California. In addition, Japan Air Lines approached her to teach their pilots’ children English and accent reduction.

The Sunshine Club of LW is sponsoring this community service class. Anyone with questions or who needs more information, call Anna Derby, 598-6796.

—Anna Derby

Spanish Club

Meeting set for reorganization

Dan Van Gelder and Amy Walker will have a meeting today, Thursday, Dec. 19, at 1 p.m, in the Clubhouse 3, Room 5, for those interested in reorganizing the Spanish Club.

Everyone interested in offering improvements to the club are welcome to attend the meeting.

Friendship Club

Dec. 24 computer class postponed

Because of the Christmas holiday, the Friendship Club computer classes on Tuesday, Dec. 24, are cancelled.

The next classes will be Monday, Jan. 6, in Clubhouse 3, Room 4.

These classes are open to all Leisure World Seal Beach residents and their guests.

A Repeatable Intro to the personal computer, most versions, with Jeff Sacks begins at 9 a.m.

Open Computer Questions, PCs and/or Mac, follows at 10. Questions about how to use Windows 8 or how to find a Windows 7 PC can also be included.

New Windows 7 computers can still be purchased from Dell (online or by phone), and refurbished ones can be found by searching on the Internet. The warranty is better on the new computers.

The next eBay class with Maxine Smith is Monday, Jan. 13, at 11 a.m.

Wireless Internet is available in Clubhouse 3, so wireless laptops are welcome.

For further information, call Jeff Sacks (714) 642-0122.

Photo - Sunshine Club members gathered for lunch at the Crab Pot on Dec. 6. They enjoyed the view of the yachts on the water, the seafood and the opportunity to get to know each other better.

Photo - Mutual 2 DIRECTOR Edie Hugo (left) visits new shareholder Joyce Harrison who just moved into Mutual 2 from Pleasanton, Calif., as part of the “Meet our Mutual” hospitality program. The mutual directors personally welcome new residents. Over 20 new shareholders moved in during the last quarter.

Korean American Club members donated relief funds to the Haiyan Typhoon victims in Philippines. The check was close to $1,000 from KAC members, the Cornerstone Korean Church, and a few individual donors. Suzanne Ahn (third from right), president of Korean Club, and other club members presented a check to Ren Villanueva (third from left), president of the Filipino Association of Leisure World, to be sent to the Philippines.