LisaFirst, I want to give a warm thank you to our readers and advertisers for welcoming us into your homes and giving us your business. You make the process of creating this magazine a joy and it’s a pleasure to serve you. I am humbled by your support.

“A life abounding in material comforts and luxuries . . .” That’s the dictionary definition of a good life. But life is so much more than material when it comes to what makes us fulfilled and happy.

Dream it: People who continue to dream, to improve themselves with self-discovery, and look beyond themselves to help others enrich their lives. I’ve run into many young and old people who have either stopped dreaming or never even began to dream. My mother has always told me, no matter how young or old you are, never stop dreaming and keep yourself open to new experiences and people. You never know where they may lead you.

Jim and Lisa - Zinger

Our pup Zinger’s new repurposed wine barrel doghouse.

Build it: Own your dream and act on it. In April 1996, my husband came to me with his dream. Would I stand by him, take a leap and buy a little newspaper called The Acorn. I was all in.

Now, our incredible employees have built five newspapers and a quarterly magazine, which enable us to inform, entertain and advocate for our readership. This growth is despite recessions and cries of “print is dead.” The lesson: Don’t let outsiders control the destiny you wish to build for yourself.

Live it: Take advantage of the opportunities and experiences around you. Be fully present for the joys you are experiencing, learn from the setbacks and immerse yourself in the now of your “good life.”

And thank you for letting Beyond be a small part of it.

Lisa Autograph




Lisa Rule, Publisher

Leslie headshot 2014In this issue of Beyond the Acorn magazine, we’ve taken a different view of “new.” We meet a man who incorporates salvaged materials into his home which is literally held up by old telephone poles. Mark and Lisa Wallace’s haven is truly an exercise in repurposing.

On a smaller scale, that’s just what our Readers Corner is about. We asked you for projects you have repurposed. We received a great selection of vintage and just plain old things that have new life and new purpose thanks to your creativity (and elbow grease). The results are delightful.

Now that I’ve got your attention, here’s what we have in mind for next time: We want to see your goofiest kid pix. That may be an old photo of you doing something utterly childish or an irresistibly goofy image of your child engaged in something so silly only a kid could have done it. I can’t wait to see what you send.

Beyond the Acorn is evolving into what we hoped it would be: a very personal, very local lifestyle magazine. That’s why in every magazine we include profiles of interesting neighbors. In this issue you’ll meet Mike Tanner, a blind radio host who stays on the air with the help of a device designed by a teenage whiz kid. You’ll also get to know Margaret Brownley, a prolific romance novelist.

My outdoor coffee table is a WWII Liberty Ship hatch cover. See our readers’ repurposed projects.

My outdoor coffee table is a
WWII Liberty Ship hatch cover.
See our readers’ repurposed

Another is Winnie Au, an instructor at Westlake Culinary Institute who approaches cake decorating as art. “Cake Walk” is a lovely piece on one of the hotter (and sweeter) trends around.

I consider Los Robles Hospital’s executive chef Brian Vandermause a neighbor as well. I think you’ll enjoy the menu he devised for Super Bowl Sunday. It’s tasty and terrific, and will certainly spice up your game-day buffet.

There is so much more in this issue of Beyond the Acorn magazine. Enjoy!
Until next time,

Leslie signiture copy



Leslie Gregory Haukoos