Health & Beauty

How to Play the Game of Life

photos and blog by Robyn Wyman-Dill

What fascinates me most about my job as a journalist is the personal journeys people take to fulfill their life’s expression. It’s like a fingerprint the way a person plays the game of life. No two are identical. Read the rest of this entry »

South Coast Metro

The Tale of the Twin Towers that turned the suburbs into south coast metro living.

photos and blog by Robyn Wyman-Dill

Under the moonlight, a gentle breeze ripples the crystal blue waters of an Olympic-sized pool. While an international crowd of beautiful people, dressed in cocktail attire, mingle on deck. When the DJ heats up the party tunes, the residents come out to watch the show – just below their balconies. Being the County’s tallest residential twin towers and all, the luxury condos have some primo south coast metro views too. Meanwhile a fun vibe is inducing a festive mood in every direction. Since they opened their doors to occupancy in 2010, the management team at Essex Skyline keeps on doing it right.

Still a residential building in Santa Ana, built by Architects KTGY Group, not tall enough to make the 40 tallest residential buildings of the world list seems an unlikely candidate to be blossoming into the hot spot for hosting cultural and philanthropic venues in town, but think again. This little tall residential building that ‘could’ is beginning to outshine the biggest and reigning best with a full demonstration kitchen for large gatherings and small events, wine bar and private wine storage, fireside seating, outdoor club space and gourmet barbecue areas, junior Olympic-sized pool, 24 hour valet service and community park great for walking – with a lake outside its back door. The rental-only luxury apartment buildings also integrate other amenity services, providing internet access connectivity without wifi or internet hiccups.

The post-moderne architecture is constructed with the understanding that environmental responsibility is an integral part of residential design. The interiors are bathed in natural light with a floor plan that is open. The decor – like the air – is California coastal. Each building is 25 stories high with one and two-bedroom homes and a limited number of penthouses. There are floor-to-ceiling windows, gourmet kitchens, luxurious bathrooms and steam washer and dryer. Because healthier and more nature living spaces feel more in harmony with the natural world.

In real estate it is all about location and Essex Skyline has found one overlooking what is becoming a very happening metropolis. Santa Ana with the influx of trendy eateries and clubs over the last five years, has turned the corner into a fashionable address (The City Council is even considering rebranding downtown Santa Ana as a “wellness corridor,” focused on healthy foods, activities, and personal care products for nearby residents.) which compliments the Essex Property’s best quality of life mission nicely. The Orange County Performing Arts Center, South Coast Plaza and Fashion Island are nearby for entertainment and good food. A short drive west, the sandy beaches of the California riviera and Newport Beach welcome you. While LAX and John Wayne Airport make international travel as painless as possible with access to bus lines and convenient road travel on highways 55 and I-405.

Essex Skyline is also home to a dynamic mix of people from different cultures, age groups and backgrounds. Meanwhile the spirit to create positive change is alive and well here. Director of Activities, Anne Vallone, who understood that one of the key players in the quality of life game is making measurable differences in the world, especially in one’s own community; was the first to see the property’s goodwill potential. What’s more she knew how to funnel that goodwill spirit effectively and began hosting fund-raising events that met with the residents’ approval. Nowadays, wherever Vallone goes on the property, residents are excited and ask about upcoming events, offering themselves and their services to Vallone in support of a cause.

The Essex Property Trust now hosts more than 50 events a year in their Orange County flagship in Santa Ana, California.

Vallone has also partnered with events producers to launch larger events like the Fourth Annual Gala & Fashion Show Benefit for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society working with Expo 4 Life Events & Marketing Company. (www.expo4life.com), The American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life working with Fun Nights Out(www.funnightsout.com) and Fashion to the Rescue Benefit for Recycled Love Dog Rescue working with (www.ocfashionshowcase.com) and featuring the latest in canine fashions for the Spring.

On June 25, Essex Skyline will host its largest fundraiser of the year, Design 4Life for the American Cancer Society working with Fun Night Out again. Thanks to these efforts more kids and cancer patients are in remission.

The cooking demo program is another brainchild of Activities Director Anne Vallone, and has been a popular niche for residents that enjoy the art of cooking. The likes of Chefs Deb Schneider (Sol Cocina), Angela (Inka Mama’s), Lindsay Smith (Nirvana Grill), Adam Starchman (Seasons 52), Jenny Ross (118 Degrees), Chris Tzorin (Savannah Chophouse and Tortilla Republic), and Doug Stratton (Spiced Bamboo) have made meals in the demonstration kitchen.The room can accommodate a group of 20-25, and has a monitor-camera set-up for easy viewing of what’s cooking.

The Activities calendar year-round stays busy with wine tastings, health expos, sporting events, pool parties, spa events, fashion shows, benefits, fireside chats with authors and cooking demonstrations. Averaging one event a week.(Some are small intimate gatherings for the residents. Others are larger events that are open to the public.)

Between the fine fashions evenings, cooking demos and goodwill events, the residents can unwind in the men’s and women’s spa areas with steam rooms, saunas, jacuzzi and relaxation lounges or swim, do yoga and workout in the gym. Essex Skyline also maintains a private putting green.

The fourth tallest buildings in Orange County are owned by Essex Property Trust, a Palo Alto-based apartment investment trust with more than 27,000 units.

Essex Skyline
15 MacArthur Place
Santa Ana, CA . 92707
www.SkylineAptHomes.com
Phone: 714.557.5483

Stay Tuned.

September

blog by Robyn Wyman-Dill

September is my favorite month of the year in the western hemisphere. This season, the changing tides seem to be headed for the better with California on the verge of becoming the first state in the nation to enact the one-use plastic bag ban!  The California Senate has voted 22-15 in favor of just such a bill which is expected to be approved by Democratic Governor Jerry Brown this September. Coming to supermarkets soon, the measure – – will ban grocery stores from handing out single-use grocery bags with purchases and provide money to local plastic bag companies to help them retool their wares to make heavier, multiple-use bags that customers can buy.

Now considering more than 10 billion plastic bags are used in California each year(According to an estimate by Californians Against Waste, an advocacy group supporting the bill.), this is exciting news. For more in-depth chatter about plastic see http://rjwdcreative.com/blog/2014/08/15/the-plastic-wrap/.  Meanwhile some 3,000 miles – that’s about 1350 kilometers – away, two albino lobsters made a rare appearance off the coast of Maine.

Little did I know lobsters come in colors. Like calico, blue, yellow, red, albino and split-colored. Read the rest of this entry »

The Plastic Wrap

by Robyn Wyman-Dill

It’s been brought to my attention we have far too much plastic in our lives. Producing an estimated 32 million tons of plastic waste annually.  According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, only 9 per cent(or less than 3 million tons) actually gets recycled. Making all that conscientious sorting of my weekly garbage equate to 81 per cent pointless. Or, is it?  I decided now is the time to educate ourselves on plastic matter.

The marriage of man to plastics can be traced as far back as 150 BC.  To Mexico.  Read the rest of this entry »

Religion in the Kitchen

blog by Robyn Wyman-dill

Some people are in the habit of going to church on Sundays. Where they pray before an altar.  My altar is my refrigerator.  God’s house of all things delicious. Amen. Read the rest of this entry »

I Turn to Page One and Read…

blog by Robyn Wyman-Dill

 

June slides into view, bringing a suitcase of troubles – like crazy tornadoes, 800 baby skeletons found in a septic tank and a rise in student shootings. I hit a nail with my head, requiring six stitches.  While the moon in June beams brightly. Just like it’s done so many times before.

Like a domino effect, the pain spreads.  From the top of my head on down. Headaches, tooth aches and a sore shoulder muscle don’t make good bedfellows. So my muses beeline it. Bound for Antonio Banderas.  Right in the middle of our great creative stretch. Days are getting longer.

I sleep a lot. Waking, more rested.

But, I am entirely void of curious thought. Suspended in a state of lackluster.  I crack open the cover of Carrie White’s autobiography, Upper Cut.                                                                                                                                    

 

It’s been sitting on my shelf for almost a year.   Read the rest of this entry »

Awesome Ayres of Manhattan Beach

                                                                                                                                                                         

 

photos and blog by Robyn Wyman-dill

 

It’s a holiday weekend in Southern California.  Which means beach barbecues and backyard grills will be in full swing, cooking the cuisine I like to call ‘pure Americana’.  (Hamburgers, hot dogs, corn-on-the-cob, cole slaw and potato salads.)   While the ‘barbies’ are being prepped, we head for the sands of Manhattan Beach, a well-heeled coastal community south of  Los Angeles International Airport.  My hometown for 15 years – which I am visiting 14 years later.

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Be Bragg Healthy

blog by Robyn Wyman-dill

Every living thing is ducking for cover as temperatures soar in southern California.

The Santa Ana winds are blasting us with a force so strong, it knocks birds right out of the trees. Three hummingbirds seek refuge in the upstairs bedrooms as the Sun beats down on the ground, wilting the foliage. Meanwhile pollen and dust and the smoke from the fires make eyes weep.

Under the tyranny of hot weather, you can expect a lack of energy, a need for napping(I have completed several siestas this week)blog delays and two teary eyes that itch.

While Californians are getting a deeper meaning of weather….I pour a glass of artesian water, adding a tablespoon of raw, unfiltered Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar.  It is my morning ritual.  The very first drink of my day – taken with allergy tablets.  As you’d expect, it’s thirst-quenching.  And it cured a boatload of ailments. Read the rest of this entry »

A Dip in a Desert Oasis

blog by Robyn Wyman-dill

Since our blog began we’ve explored the benefits of bottled at the source, Mountain Valley Mineral Spring Water http://rjwdcreative.com/blog/2013/08/11/mount-olympus-delicious-mountain-valley-spring-water/ and the masterful coupling of thirst-quenching San Pellegrino Mineral Water with the intense taste of rich blood orange juice http://rjwdcreative.com/blog/2014/03/27/o-is-for-orange-drink/.  We took you on a road trip, stopping for a dip in stressbuster waters. http://rjwdcreative.com/blog/2013/03/21/stress-buster/.     

Thanks to the powerful energy of a positive vortex, we decided to return for a dip in those very pools of stressbuster water…aka mineral water – at the source in Desert Hot Springs, California.

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Fun Ways to Save the Universe

 

We are making the turn into April.  This week began with April showers and lots of flower power and April Fool’s Day.   It’s the time of year when light rays from a gentler sun break through the clouds. Illuminating color.  Which signals the pollinators of life – the birds and the bees – to get busy sounding Earth’s wake-up call.  And love is in the air. Which you can download on iTunes and follow on Facebook, Instagram, and Tweeter. Which puts me right in the mood…

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