A Healthy Haunting in the San Gabriel Valley

Our Resident Ghost Was a Long-Lived Legend Who Gifted Us an Amazing Garden and a Sense of the Good Life

Ten Octobers ago, my family moved into our San Gabriel Valley home, and people started knocking on the door. Some knockers were neighbors. Some were trick-or-treaters.

And some were looking for Steve.

I had no idea who they were talking about. I certainly didn’t know that Steve was dead. I didn’t even know that Steve wasn’t his real name.

But I would learn, slowly, the story of the gentleman who used to live in my house. His family left no forwarding address for the mail that still arrives for him, and my attempts …

Where I Go: L.A.’s Arboretum, Where the Peafowl Hunt You in Packs | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Where I Go: L.A.’s Arboretum, Where the Peafowl Hunt You in Packs

Butt-Dancing Birds Have Become My Pandemic Icons

When the pandemic fell upon the earth, my husband Andrew and I went to the L.A. Arboretum. Few other Southern California locations remained open after Gov. Gavin Newsom issued our …

What San Gabriel’s Padres Taught William Mulholland

The Missionaries Figured Out How to Create an Oasis in an Arid Land and Brought that Knowledge to the City of L.A.

On a hot August day in 1816, waves of heat shimmered off of the dusty plazas and red tile roofs of the San Gabriel Mission community. The surrounding valley and …

My Uncle Dale’s California Dream

In the High Desert, He Lived Like a Cowboy, Hauled Sand and Milk, and Kept Our Family Together

I had to go to a family funeral up in Apple Valley, I explained to friends and colleagues, as I canceled a day’s worth of appointments recently. They offered …

Walking Alone After Dark

For a Mile and a Half Each Night, I Make To-Do Lists, Listen to Bruce Springsteen, and Occasionally Find Answers to Life’s Big Questions

After we moved two years ago to Montrose, a Glendale neighborhood tucked against the Verdugo Hills, some friends—all moms like me—found out I walked every night. They wanted to set …

How Fireworks Divide California

The State’s Regulations on a July Fourth Tradition Don’t Always Make Sense. But They’re Part of What Makes This Country Great.

If you venture out to Fourth of July weekend events around California, you’ll probably hear high talk about how Independence Day is a celebration of the things we Americans supposedly …