Evolution in L.A.

    Evolution in L.A.

    Hello and salutations to all my blog followers out there who have been ignored for the past couple months! There’s this thing that has been getting in the way of my photo blog blogging… and for the past six months that’s been my new position at the Los Angeles Register as the Community Engagement Editor. […]

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    South Bay Photography Class

    South Bay Photography Class

    Let me introduce you to two of the most talented photographers in the South Bay! To sign up for classes visit the South Bay Art Department’s website.

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    Ready, Willing and Able

    Ready, Willing and Able

    Sometimes between the city council election and city government stories I get to spend an afternoon with somebody who really warms my heart with their attitude and story. Liz Cantine, a Palos Verdes woman who teaches children with special needs to dance, was just that kind of person. She was glowing, chipper, full of energy […]

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    Collector and inventor turns 100 - and blows my mind with his skills

    Collector and inventor turns 100 – and blows my mind with his skills

    I want you to meet an amazing man… This is Lowell- On August 25, Hermosa Beach resident Lowell Stirratt celebrated 100th his birthday and entered an elite group of people who have been alive a century. “I’ve lived to be 100 because I don’t sweat the small stuff,” Stirratt said. “Laugh and be happy. If […]

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    Wedding Week in Instagrams

    Wedding Week in Instagrams

    John and I tied the knot in mid October in a BEAUTIFUL Southern California wedding. The weather was perfect, the wedding went flawlessly (that I know of) and the groom was pretty cute! Here are a few photos from the amazing week and even some from our honeymoon in Big Sur.  

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    The First Inaugural Schreiber Family Kitty Calendar

    The First Inaugural Schreiber Family Kitty Calendar

    The 2014 Schreiber Family Kitty Calendar is here! Due to the amount of emails and messages I’ve received from people asking where they can buy it, I uploaded it to Lulu.com and you can buy it for $16.99. If you’re Christmas present getting friends or family… you’ll probably find one of these babies in your stocking.

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    BLOG

    Evolution in L.A.

    Hello and salutations to all my blog followers out there who have been ignored for the past couple months!

    There’s this thing that has been getting in the way of my photo blog blogging… and for the past six months that’s been my new position at the Los Angeles Register as the Community Engagement Editor. (*Backstory… After my paper, the Easy Reader News, was purchased by Freedom Communications, I was moved up from the Hermosa Beach beat and given an opportunity to try something new!)

    That is what I want to share with you today, at least partially.

    Additionally, for the past year I have been running a South Bay fashion “street style” blog and luckily the LA Register has allowed me to incorporate that into my weekly duties. During the past few months I’ve been in charge of a new feature, the LA ‘Street Style’ page. It’s been really fun getting to know areas of L.A. and I’ve also had the opportunity to meet so many amazing people as well! My fashion sense is a little dull… but I’ve definitely been learning more about fashion, colors and clothing as well as the attitude that is necessary to pull off an outfit, no matter how that person is dressed!

    As always, keep checking out my Instagram and to all those kitty calendar fans out there, we are dutifully working on the next one! This year’s theme – TV and Movies…. (Downton Tabby, Pawshank Redemption, Wizard of Paws.. etc.) Suggestions are appreciated!

    starstreetstylegriffith-park-observatory

     

    venicesmlarchmont-fashion

    South Bay Photography Class

    Let me introduce you to two of the most talented photographers in the South Bay! To sign up for classes visit the South Bay Art Department’s website.

    South Bay Art Department Photo Class

    South Bay Art Department Photo Class

    Ready, Willing and Able

    Sometimes between the city council election and city government stories I get to spend an afternoon with somebody who really warms my heart with their attitude and story. Liz Cantine, a Palos Verdes woman who teaches children with special needs to dance, was just that kind of person. She was glowing, chipper, full of energy and made me feel good just being near her. I’m happy there are such wonderful people in this world! Sometimes I forget.

    Liz Cantine helps kids with special needs learn to dance during her, 'Ready, Willing and Able' class. Photo by Chelsea Schreiber

    Liz Cantine helps kids with special needs learn to dance during her, ‘Ready, Willing and Able’ class. Photo by Chelsea Schreiber

    Collector and inventor turns 100 – and blows my mind with his skills

    I want you to meet an amazing man…

    This is Lowell-

    On August 25, Hermosa Beach resident Lowell Stirratt celebrated 100th his birthday and entered an elite group of people who have been alive a century.

    “I’ve lived to be 100 because I don’t sweat the small stuff,” Stirratt said. “Laugh and be happy. If you become unhappy, move. I’ve done that a number of times.”

    According to the U.S. Census, only 1.73 people out of 10,000 people live to be centenarians. Over his birthday weekend, his daughter Kathy Ochner, 63, hosted a party at her home in San Pedro and invited all of his remaining friends and relatives to celebrate the milestone. Ochner hired a limo to get him from his house to the party location, but he refused the chauffer service.

    “I drove myself,” Stirratt said, matter-of-factly.

    Over 84 people attended the party to celebrate Stirratt’s 100-year success.

    Nailed to a tree outside his Hermosa Beach home, Lowell reads a homemade poetry scroll that features many of his original work. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    Nailed to a tree outside his Hermosa Beach home, Lowell reads a homemade poetry scroll that features many of his original work. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    “I just enjoyed swapping stories and seeing everybody,” Stirratt said. “You know, some of them I wouldn’t have recognized if I saw them on the street because they’ve changed so much.”

    Stirratt has five grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild on the way.

    “My two brothers and sister have all passed on, and my two sons,” Stirratt said. “And so I’m pretty much up there at the top of the heap.”

    Stirratt was born in 1913 and grew up on a farm near Prescott, Wisconsin. Growing up he worked the farm, outlived the Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and survived polio. After moving to Minnesota with his wife Clara, he worked at the White Motor Company for three years and continued on to work at over 17 other mechanically-centered jobs throughout his lifetime. After his kids were born, most of his family had left the Midwest and moved to California. Following his family’s lead, Stirratt moved to Hermosa Beach in 1952 with their four children, Linda, Kathy, Roland and Vernon.

    “We got tired of July, August and winter in Minnesota, and so it just happened that we decided we were going to come here, not knowing how we were going to manage that,” Stirrat said. “A man came into [the White Motor Company] and bought two tractor-trailer rigs and he was looking for someone to drive one so the salesman hooked him up with me and I agreed to drive his truck out here if he would leave me room enough for my furniture. And that’s just what we did.”

    The family of five drove the almost 2,000-mile long trip, trading off the four kids between the tractor-trailer rig and a new 1950 Dodge Wayfarer.

    “We rented a house three blocks back from the beach,” said Stirrat. “The rent was reasonable, you wouldn’t believe the price – I think it was $90 a month. Then when I bought this house the payment was $68 a month.”

    Lowell laughs at the amount of stuff in his garage after showing off a tractor he made from scratch. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    Lowell laughs at the amount of stuff in his garage after showing off a tractor he made from scratch. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    He added that at the time, his job at an iron works shop in Redondo Beach paid him $1.25 an hour.

    “It wasn’t a heck of a lot of money, but like I said, everything was relative. It all worked out,” said Stirrat.

    He moved his family to a home near Prospect Avenue on Golden Avenue three years after moving to Hermosa Beach and hasn’t moved since.

    “You couldn’t roller skate on the road. It was just a plain ole dirt street,” Stirrat said, about the first few years in North Hermosa. “When we moved here there was a vacant lot on the corner and a small house where that big apartment is going up.”

    He also had a view that stretched all the way from Palos Verdes to Malibu. Now a large ‘mega-mansion’ blocks his view.

    “The biggest change in Hermosa Beach is probably the mansionization of the city,” Stirrat said, while looking at the neighbor’s homes. “When you drove along Prospect Avenue there were just little houses along the way. Now they’re all big apartments and huge houses. The same thing will happen here when we’re through with this house; two big buildings will go up. We’re getting squeezed out.”

    His wife Clara died of cancer in 1978. Shortly after he met his second wife, Gloria, now 90. They will be married for 35 years in October.

    After retiring at the age of 70, Stirrat has kept busy.

    “It’s impossible for me to sit still and just read or doing nothing,” said Stirrat. “I have a real nice little shop in the garage so I would make all kinds of stuff down there.”

    A favorite project of his is a small 1930s Allis Chalmers tractor that he built from scratch and used to ride in parades around the South Bay. Dotted around his yard are years of projects that sprouted from scrap in his garage.

    “I still have livestock,” he said while walking down the driveway to his workshop, pointing to two metal pigs made of gas tanks, a funnel, glass bottles and other unidentifiable parts.

    Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    On the porch in his backyard he also has a homemade treadmill, a small German-style house-turned fountain and a bench made to look like half of a covered wagon.

    “He stays busy, he’s always doing something,” Ochner said while pointing out more homemade inventions, like a drum.

    “I was sitting watching the symphony one day and thought, ‘I wonder why nobody has a metal violin, somebody’s gotta have that!’ So I made one,” Stirrat said. “I’m probably the only person with a metal violin.”

    His musical invention, a true-to-size violin made of aluminum that he has dubbed an ‘Alumiviol,’ sounds almost identical to a violin, only a little more metallic and sharp. Only two parts of his invention are made from actual violin parts – the strings and the chin rest. The bridge, which holds up the strings, features a drilled letter A and instead of being on the top of the violin, the decorative but functional F holes are drilled circles along the edge of the instrument for better stability, Stirrat said. The bow, with “hair” made from screen door wire, pulls across the strings almost exactly like a traditional horse hair bow.

    Stirrat’s hobbies don’t focus strictly on mechanical feats. Outside his home nailed to a tree he’s secured a glass-fronted box with a scroll of original poetry for the neighbor kids to read.

    “It’s been up there for maybe five years or so,” Stirrat said. “You see, that’s just it. I’m an outgoing person so that’s probably one of the reasons I put it out there because I have all these poems in this book and nobody sees ‘em.”

    Lowell Stirratt at his 100th birthday party with his daughters Kathy and Linda. Photo submitted by Kathy

    Lowell Stirratt at his 100th birthday party with his daughters Kathy and Linda. Photo submitted by Kathy

    The skill for writing poetry, he said, runs in the family.

    “My Aunt Maude Doolittle wrote poems and my mother also wrote a few so it musta been passed down to me,” said Stirrat. “I started writing them maybe 12 years ago. I just got to thinking about stuff, about the farm and different things like where I’d been and the thoughts would just sorta run through my head, so I wrote them down.”

    Stirrat and Gloria added that they have lived in Hermosa Beach for so long because it’s a small community.

    “You get to know your neighbors and the weather never gets too hot and we always have a nice sea breeze,” said Stirrat. “It’s a pretty much a pleasant place to live. So that’s about it, I guess.” ER

    Wedding Week in Instagrams

    John and I tied the knot in mid October in a BEAUTIFUL Southern California wedding. The weather was perfect, the wedding went flawlessly (that I know of) and the groom was pretty cute! Here are a few photos from the amazing week and even some from our honeymoon in Big Sur.

    Wedding-Week

     

    The First Inaugural Schreiber Family Kitty Calendar

    The very first ‘Schreiber Family Kitty Calendar’ is finally finished! Due to the amount of emails and messages I’ve received from people asking where they can buy it, I uploaded it to Lulu.com and you can buy it for $18.99. If you’re Christmas present getting friends or family… you’ll probably find one of these babies in your stocking.

    All proceeds (The $5.60 I get per calendar after printing) will go towards vet bills to cure Presley’s irritable kitty bowel syndrome, and of course… more costumes.

    (Yes- AP Style guide buffs, I understand it’s not annual until something’s done three times and this is the first calendar… But it is going to happen every year from here on out so I might as well start with a cohesive title.)

    January

    January

    February

    February

    March

    March

    April

    April
    May

    May

    June

    June

    July

    July

    August

    August

    September

    September

    October

    October
    November

    November

    December

    December

    *No animals were harmed in the making of this calendar. Actually, they were very forgiving and even cuddled with us afterwards.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Redbull Flugtag Dragon Takes Flight

    Long Beach Red Bull Flugtag

    Saturday’s National Red Bull Flugtag human-powered flying competition in Long Beach saw the brave efforts of local Hermosa Beach team ‘Game of Throwns,’ as they pushed local pilot Kirsti Davis off a three-story pier in an effort to clinch a national title and Redbull prestige. The team’s Styrofoam dragon flew 44 feet, just short of the day’s 254 feet record. However, Davis was able to stay atop the dragon until impact, 28 feet below the pier – a feat many of the 27 flying machines were unable to achieve. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    Five “Game of Thrones” fans walked into a bar on Cinco de Mayo and walked out with an unexpected idea drawn on a napkin. They would design a dragon-shaped aircraft to fly at the 2013 Red Bull Flugtag. Kristi Davis, a Hermosa Beach resident and pilot for Sky West Airlines, would pilot the homemade craft.

    An ad for Flugtag on the barroom TV spawned the idea.

    “We were sitting around having a good time and we started talking and it came to us that we could do that too,” said Davis. “Anybody can submit an application, and if they think that you can pull off what you say you’re going to do and they like your idea, then they select you. It took them awhile to decide about us.”

    The friends had been to the event in Long Beach in 2010 and understood what was involved in the sky-high competition.

    “We were watching the crafts go off, and while a few of them actually flew, so many of them went off and fluttered down without really going forward, and a lot of them just fell apart as soon as they hit the air,” said Ryan O’Shea, a team member and bio medical engineer. “We looked at the crafts and thought we could do better than that.”

    The group, the “Game of Throwns”, spent countless hours designing and implementing the project in preparation for liftoff at this year’s Red Bull Flugtag in Long Beach on Saturday. They’ll be competing against 32 teams from around the West Coast in an attempt to test their craft by pushing it off the 28-foot high 3-story tall Long Beach pier, or flight deck, with the hopes of gliding safely onto, not into, the water.

    “This wacky team will dress up, perform a skit and push their craft, inspired by the dragon in the hit TV show Game of Thrones, off the flight deck in an attempt to fly as far as possible,” a press release for the event said.

    Their group happened to have the perfect mix of people to pull off such a feat. Davis hopes that their expertise will keep their “Dragoncraftglider,” the name O’Shea came up for the craft, from just plunging into the ocean without any lift. Davis and her husband Justin, a business consultant, along with O’Shea, graphic designer Evan Squire and aerospace engineer Mike Perrin began working on the plans immediately after getting approved to compete.

    “I’m going to sit in the aircraft and the boys are going to push it for 100 feet or so and launch me into the water,” said Davis. “You have to be a little crazy for this; it’s one of the things that qualifies you.”

    Squire started making mock-ups of the flying dragon’s design while O’Shea secured a space in his office to build the flying apparatus.

    “It’s interesting because I work with a lot of physicists and mechanical engineers and people who have a good understanding of engineering,” said O’Shea. “Most of the aerospace people look at it and don’t really know what we want to accomplish with it – which isn’t to fly really far, but get off the flight deck and catch a little bit of lift so we can glide into the water.”

    He added that many of his coworkers have asked him how he expects the dragon is going to fly on Saturday, and that he feels confident in the structural stability of the craft, and hopeful that the specially designed tail will help direct where the craft lands.

    “It’s pretty detailed,” Davis said. “The head is made of Styrofoam, and it was carved by hand. It’s pretty amazing. I just saw a block of Styrofoam and Evan somehow saw a dragon head and made it happen.”

    The engineers researched previous year’s aircrafts and looked at what worked for the ones that were able to glide safely to the water.

    “The thing I noticed that we needed to work on was having a controllable tail,” said O’Shea. “We’re not going to get enough speed – even if we were Olympic sprinters – to get enough lift for what will end up being a 300-lb craft. What you can do is hope for the first few feet of falling that gravity will get enough speed so we don’t nose dive into the water. Whether there’s enough time to build up enough speed is yet to be seen.”

    However, O’Shea is confident in Davis’ piloting abilities, and is hopeful that she will be able to stay mounted on top of the 24-foot wingspan of the dragon, like the character of Daenerys Targaryen, known in the show as the “Mother of Dragons.

    “I’ve also tried to ensure that she feels comfortable bailing out of the craft if things get hairy,” O’Shea said. “You never can tell until it’s actually out there, but we’re going forward as if it’s going to fly.”

    The competition begins at 10 a.m. in Long Beach’s Rainbow Harbor. The local team asks that their supporters wear green.

    “It started as a design on a napkin, and I look at our aircraft now and it’s crazy to see how far we’ve come,” said Davis.

     

    Weezer | Weekend Adventure | San Diego

    I met the members of my favorite band a couple weeks ago at Comic Con… I had to share!

    IMG_4495 IMG_4437IMG_4595

    This story makes me smile… | On assignment | Easy Reader News

    Ken sneaks a kiss. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    From Old Hollywood to New Hermosa,

    couple spends nearly 70 years together

     

    Ken Green, 92, and Ann Green, 90, have been married for 67 years.

    “No,” said their daughter Carrie. “68.”

    Ann still thinks it’s 67, despite her daughter’s calculations.

    The couple have three children, Dona, Carrie and Kenneth, and live in a duplex with they share with their daughter Dona overlooking Hermosa Beach and the ocean. The couple has a way of talking that can only be understood after many years of marriage. They banter back and forth, interrupting and finishing each other’s sentences while stopping for long moments to wade through memories of their first years together. After almost 70 years, communication and life alongside each other has become well-worn habit.

    Ann said they wouldn’t trade it for the world. For the past couple years, Ken has been battling the early stages of dementia, struggling at times with memory. Ann has remained right at his side, helping him through his day-to-day life. Some days are better than others, they say, but what gets them through each day is their devotion to one another and their shared past.

    “We got married in 1945 after the war and started our own,” said Ken, with a smirk.

    Ken proposed while they were having a drink at a club in Hollywood.

    “I said, ‘Hey lets get married tomorrow,’” said Ken. “I told her, ‘Get a dress, we’re gonna get married.’”

    “We knew each other three months,” said Ann. “We went to the courthouse in Burbank, but I don’t know what we did after that.”

    “We paid 10 to 15 bucks and that was it,” Ken said about the wedding and marriage license.

    Ken’s still not sure how he knew they were right for each other. “We probably drank too much,” he said.

    “He always says he was drunk when he asked me to marry him,” Ann said. “I guess it worked.”

    After they got married, Ken said, smiling, that the two “sobered up.”

    Ken remembers that they went to dinner with their good friend racecar driver Johnnie Parsons and other friends to celebrate.

    Gas was difficult to get at the time because of the war, so they didn’t go far for their honeymoon and stayed at the Coconut Grove in Hollywood. They went back to work a few days after the wedding.

    They still have a photograph that was shot on their very first date.

    Ken and Ann Green have been married for at least 67 years. On their first date at a club in Hollywood a photographer snapped a photo of the couple spending an evening together. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    Ken and Ann Green have been married for at least 67 years. On their first date at a club in Hollywood a photographer snapped a photo of the couple spending an evening together. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    Ken said he thinks they stayed together for more than 65 years because “if you really love somebody, you’ll never leave ‘em.”

    Ann thinks that you only get lucky once, and you have to trust each other.

    “Make sure you love them,” added Ken.

    The couple worked at Bendix in North Hollywood making Mae West radios. If something was broken, Ken fixed it. Ann worked at the same place and did the wiring and soldering for the radios. Ken was also a tool maker and helped make airplanes and submarines. Eventually he made his own 38-foot boat in their living room in Granada Hills and was planning on sailing around the world, a plan that never quite came to fruition.

    Ann went to school in her hometown, Dallas, to be a welder. She moved to California with a girlfriend and lived with her cousin because she “outgrew Dallas.” Ken came by train from Detroit for the weather.

    In the evenings, when she was 21, Ann would get dolled up and join her girlfriends at the Hollywood Palladium or the Brown Derby.

    “It was very exciting,” said Ann. “I rode the trolley car all the way from North Hollywood to Hollywood, 10 miles maybe, and we’d dance and have lots of fun. [Hollywood] was very, very nice at that time. The trolley stopped at 2 a.m. and if we didn’t get out in time we’d have to get a taxi or get a ride from a soldier. Five of us would jump in the car and they would take us all the way to the Valley where we were living.”

    She loved to kick up her heels and dance the night away. Strangely, she didn’t dance with Ken until after they were married.

    “I’d dance with sailors and soldiers,” Ann said. “I even saw Marilyn Monroe at the premiere of ‘Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.’”

    “And they do,” Ken said, noting his preference for blondes while making a quickly refuted claim that he once kissed Marilyn Monroe.

    They were friends with Frank Sinatra’s bodyguard and often saw Sinatra while he was out on the town. They also saw Gene Autry and John Wayne, among other Hollywood royalty.

    Before retiring they owned a motel in Lake Tahoe near Frank Sinatra’s club in Cal Neva. Movie stars and famous bands would stay in their motel during that time.

    Ken didn’t like spending time at their motel in the winter, because he didn’t want to shovel snow.

    “Why did I leave Detroit then? I coulda stayed there and froze in the snow,” said Ken.

    They moved to Palos Verdes in 1980 and ended up in Hermosa Beach in 1986, 27 years ago.

    “The way I look it, I ain’t gonna find any place better than what I’ve got here,” said Ken about his home in Hermosa Beach.

    They’re both happy with their lives together, and are especially proud of their children and grandchildren.

    “We have our ups and downs still, oh but it’s been lovely,” said Ann.

    “Oh yeah…” said Ken. His tip to staying married is, “don’t do it.”

    “We get along most of the time, but you get old and cranky,” said Ken.

    While sitting together on the couch in their Hermosa Beach home with their two daughters watching, Ken snuck a kiss.

    “I don’t know what kept us together,” Ken said. “I often wonder.”

    “I guess it was love,” Ann said. “I don’t know what else it coulda been.”

    SEA lab photo students

    I wanted to share this cute photo of two of my photo students taking pictures at the Redondo Beach SEA lab. Thank you for showing us around Tyler!

    Nicole and Mia take macro photos of starfish at the Redondo Beach SEA lab. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    Nicole and Mia take macro photos of starfish at the Redondo Beach SEA lab. Photo by Chelsea Sektnan

    If you live in the South Bay area, be sure to check out the South Bay Art Department! Photography classes are every Saturday at 4:30 p.m.