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Cotati Heart & Soul - Deborah Taylor-French - December 2015


Cotati Heart & Soul - December 2015

by Deborah Taylor-French

“Imagine all the people, living life in peace.” —John Lennon

The Olive Branch offers peace lamps & GMO free foods 

What a pleasure to meet Costa Nasser, the Marketing Manager for the Olive Branch Company. Mr. Nasser showed me his shelves of inexpensive GMO free herbs, grains, olive oil and concentrated juices from the Holy Land. His family began their business in Palestine by making peace lamps. They still make them, selling them in gift sets, which include a jar of olive oil, floating wicks and glass liner. Both the peace dove and larger white ceramic lamp with a handle come hand painted. When Mr. Nasser showed me how this oil lamp worked, I wished I had met him years ago. His families lamp would have saved me $$$ if I had purchased and used their peace lamp, instead of candles for our dining table and winter cheer.

Now that the Olive Branch has opened in Cotati, their family company has sixteen shops worldwide, including a shop in Paris, France. Mr. Nasser sold out all 300 jars of olives on grand opening day. Olive Branch. We tasted Zatar herbs, thyme, sesame seeds and olive oil on fresh bread with black olives. Costa Nasser continues to add value to his family’s products and shops. He mentioned working on a cookbook to help people use the teas, herbs, olive oil and grains he sells. I though I knew something about grains, but I know I’m going back to buy and cook Frekeh and Borgoi. Mr. Nasser said, “You can cook these instead of rice. They have more nutrition and are organically farmed.”

Dates, honey and chocolates are available in gift-wrapped packages. Spa scrubs, lotions and olive oil soaps from the Dead Sea all can be made into lovely gift baskets. Go see the Olive Branch for their unique foods and low priced gifts.

Passanisi Home & Garden reopens after Penngrove fire 

We felt glad to find their store open just in time for holiday gift giving. Go find Vince Passanisi and enjoy the lively home and garden gifts at 131 Kentucky St. #B Petaluma, CA. Call 707-766-1771 for store hours.

Sonoma County Kids  

I met lovely parents from both these organizations at Cotati Kids’ Day in July. Sonoma County Kids (.com) keeps an event calendar of FYI and DIY for parents with young children. Their Web site hosts a list of classes and crafts directory. I found events listed like these: a free car seat fitting session in Petaluma, free Cuentos y CantosBilingual Story and Play Time at Sebastopol Library, a Hands-On Hanukkah – At Fundemonium in Rohnert Park and Cirque de Boheme: A Winter Circus at Cornerstone in Sonoma, with three shows a day from November 27 to December 27th. I’m curious about the last event. According to Sonoma County Kids’ Web site this is “…an old style circus based on the French tradition of the 1920’s, Le Cirque de Bohème plus even a year-round birthday party guide.” Tickets go for $18 to $55.

Jolly Cotati winter traditions 

Wednesday, December 2nd I hope you will join our Cotati Christmas Tree Lighting. We will sing carols then count down to our town tree lighting. This evening is free, held in La Plaza Park and sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce. After the tree lighting, we join our firemen and peace officers strolling over to enjoy cookies, hot beverages and live music. Kids line up inside the firehouse to talk to Santa Claus. People keep the spirit of giving by bringing new, unwrapped toy donations for the Rancho Adobe Fire District annual toy drive. See our Gazette community calendar for more winter holiday events.



Email Cotati news, events & community action by the 5th of next month.



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