St. James' News Update

Friday, October 19, 2012
I’ve been marveling at how well you all seem to parent your children and how fortunate we all are to have you in the Saint James’ community. As my own brood has aged and grown and turned into parents themselves, I find myself thinking back on the days when they (and we) were young. I thought I’d share this with you this week. You’ll feel like Supermoms and Superdads when you read this!
Reflections on the Joys of Parenthood…
I know that Jesus once declared, publicly enough for His words to be recorded in scripture and preserved for all eternity, this great if somewhat daunting dictum: “Suffer the little children to come unto Me.” I took it as a personal mandate to be accessible to and an advocate for children… just as Christ Himself was…and I started with my own.
On my best days as a parent, I fully subscribed to that spiritual injunction. I lived it, breathed it, embraced it, and reveled in its wisdom.  Why, New York City was a fabulous place to raise a toddler! We strolled to the Guggenheim after playing pat-a-cake in Sheep’s Meadow.  We climbed on the statue of Hans Christian Anderson and chased the pigeons around Central Park’s boat pond happily flapping our arms in shameless if spastic abandon. What could possibly be more fun than that? 
Yes, indeed, my child was the greatest gift that God and Life could ever have conspired to give me. I believed that deep down in my soul. But to be perfectly honest, every once in a while I just would have liked the tiniest little break from that gift. Just a wee little respite from motherhood was all I would have asked. I wanted a breather, or as we seem to call it today, a little “ME time.” And if the ME time could have been doled out in portions of, say, a month or two at a pop, I might have been eternally grateful for just such a well-earned mini-break. I mean…parenthood is hard. Isn’t it?
It’s not that I didn’t love rolling out the play dough (made from my neighbor’s original recipe, with only organic wheat flour and the purest dish soap, and militantly devoid of red dye #47.)  Who could possibly grow weary of fun like that?!  And I certainly never tired of plopping those colorful plastic rings on whatever it was you called that rocking Fisher-Price stacking toy. Boy, that was exciting…and stimulating.  I especially liked it when Devon stacked the same brightly colored rings on the cat’s tail one day and cranked him down the hall shrieking, “Go, cat, go!”  Now, that’s fun.
And it’s not even that I took umbrage at the intrusion of those ever-vigilant Eastside nannies who inevitably found my child to be too de classe to play with their nattily attired charges. Who knew that you had to buy your size 2 play clothes at Cerruti’s on Madison Avenue to find true acceptance?! And by the way, where were the actual mommies of the adorable babies who so excelled in sandbox shenanigans and rode in their $6,000 prams to and from those impeccably cultivated little playgrounds?  I never actually met the moms; but I began to think seriously about donning a white nylon dress and sensible tie shoes so I could better mesh with the nanny crowd on play dates at the park. 
So, tell me if my nasty little parenting secret has some resonance for you. Give me a power salute if you’ve ever wanted to just throw in your mommy or daddy towel for a couple days?  Honk if you need some ME time!  But then remember this:  my children are grown now.  The baby of the family is thirty-three.  The world of stuffed animals, ubiquitous blankies, wiggly front teeth, and first days of school is long, long gone.  I’d give my eyeteeth to have a child (other than the dog) following me into the bathroom or digging holes in the backyard, or best of all, sprawling on my lap to hear a bedtime story. Treasure them now. Suffer your own little children to come unto you…as often as you can get them to do it. Time is fast a-fleeting, and there will come a day when they won’t. Trust me when I tell you, you’ll miss them more than words can say.    


New Feature for Parents……Week-At-A-Glance
Every week we will provide you with the upcoming school week with our Week-At-A-Glance so that you are up to date on all the wonderful happenings here at the school. You can refer to this for the school schedule, or click here to download a copy and print for the front of the frig!

Week-At-A-Glance for Monday, October 22 through Friday, October 26, 2012


Larchmont Fair – Save the Date – Sunday, October 28, 2012
Please plan on joining us for delicious Korean BBQ, the best bake sale goodies at the fair, games for the kids and help support our wonderful school spirit. Last year, St. James’ hit it out of the park during the Larchmont Fair. We look forward to having as much fun again this year.

The Larchmont Fair is just over one week away (October 28) and we desperately need your help at the SJS games booth. Last year, our games were played over 700 times, with most of that activity occurring between 1 and 4 p.m. To manage that volume, we need at least four people staffing the booth at all times. It’s not hard, but it’s not something that one person can do alone. So please, please consider volunteering one or two hours of your time to help out at the games booth. Right now, our most pressing need is for people who can staff the booth from 2 to 5 p.m. To volunteer, please call John Schlotterbeck at 818-319-3196 or via email at Thanks!
Calling All Volunteers – please click on this link to view the other volunteer opportunities. You can return a completed form to PSF via Backpack Express, or email Richard Park ( or Hyacinth Leus ( with your volunteer questions and commitment.  Thank you. 
Calling All Bakers – please click on this link to print and return your bake sale sheet. 
Calling All Pre-Orders for Korean BBQ – please click on this link to print and complete your Korean BBQ Pre-Order Form.  Pre-order forms are due by Tuesday, October 23rd.  

Annual Hispanic Heritage Assembly

St. James’ Episcopal School proudly invites you to attend the
4th Annual Hispanic Heritage Assembly on Thursday, October 25, 2012
From 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall.
You won’t want to miss the wonderful performances from our Preschool students all the way through to our Sixth Graders. All parents are welcome to attend.  


Service Learning
October and November have been decreed “snack cracker” time! Our friends at the St. James’ food pantry have asked us to continue to help feed the homeless in our neighborhood by bringing in small, individually wrapped packages of crackers and cookies. At our community gathering last Friday, I used the Ritz Cheese and Cracker and Oreo packages as examples. There are other brands that would work as well. The main thing the pantry needs is that they are packaged so that each package can be distributed to individual bags. This collection will continue until Monday, December 3. We will then share our gifts at All School Chapel on Wednesday, December 5.
This week’s service opportunity can be found in my neighborhood. The Christmas Tree Lane Association in Altadena is looking for volunteers to help hang Christmas Lights along Santa Rosa Avenue. For those of you that are not familiar with this, a stretch of Santa Rosa Avenue (in Altadena, running north/south between Woodbury and Altadena Drive) is lined with huge, beautiful Italian Deodar trees. Each year those trees are strung with long strands of the big, old fashioned Christmas lights, a tradition that dates back to 1920. The Association began hanging lights on Saturday, October 13, and will continue to work on Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., until all of the trees are finished. All of this work creates a very pretty spectacle for everyone to enjoy after the switch is thrown on December 8. For more information you can check out their website at
Rob Krueger
Director of Service Learning

Peter Pan is about to take flight!
Rehearsals are underway, the cast has been set, the kids are having a ball. Now it is time for parents to join the fun.  
We need help from as parents with interest, talent and/or some time for the following areas:
Stage Construction and Design
Costume Design 
Make-Up for the day of the event
Audio/Visual - helping us with a PA system and sound and taping for the show 
Please contact Joe Davidson ( or Beth Kawaja ( for more details and to volunteer. Thanks.




Friday News Update…..Needs a New Name!
Naming Contest for weekly E-Newsletter
We have launched a contest to rename the weekly St. James’ News Update. It is time to put your creative thinking caps on and help us rename the Friday e-newsletter. 
Starting Monday, October 22 through Friday, October 26, there will be a display outside the Media Center for you to nominate your favorite name for the newsletter. The top five names will be chosen, and every family will get an opportunity to vote for their favorite new name. Thanks for your wonderful ideas.


Library/Media Center News

Author Visit
On Wednesday, October 24, children's book author and illustrator Diane deGroat will visit St. James' students in Grades K-2. She will introduce her latest books, Homer and Gilbert and the Lost Tooth. Ms. deGroat will present at 10:30am. Parents are welcome to attend. Books will be available for purchase at the event. Please click here to print the form for purchasing one of Diane deGroat’s books. 
Click here to read the most recent Library Media Center Newsletter, the St. James’ LMC Times.

Saturday Mornings at the Opera

We have a wonderful opportunity from the LA Opera and their Saturday Mornings at the Opera program. Nine lucky SJ students, will join Mr.Casey on a Saturday field trip to see the Opera

The first nine families to contact Debbi David ( will be entitled to one complimentary ticket for their child to attend the Saturday performance.  





Join us after school for a simple supper provided by our parish chef Julia Rhoton at St. James’ Café, located in the Parish Hall on Wednesdays from 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. All school families are invited. We look forward to seeing you there! Suggested donation $5.
Please note that the St. James’ Café will be closed on Halloween, 31 October 2012 so that everyone can make it home in time to share treats with all the ghosts and goblins.   ....



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