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Sonoma County Gazette
Cotati Heart and Soul by Deborah Taylor- French

Holiday Season in Cotati

Nov 23, 2017
by Deborah Taylor-French


Big Shout Out to our Cotati Police and dispatchers.

Officers helped with the fire evacuations and safety patrols of evacuated areas. Our law enforcement dispatchers relieved exhausted dispatchers at the County Sheriff’s office during the fires.

“Gifts of time and love are surely the basic ingredients of a truly merry Christmas..”~Peg Bracken

Every year before the winter holidays, I find myself wanting less. Wanting fewer gifts, less stuff to buy – I wish to share more time with friends and family. Our family celebrates Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, and Christmas. The rituals of Hanukkah feel renewing. Love placing a menorah in our window. We look forward to reciting the prayer as we light each night’s candles at sundown. Our dear mother, Alice Leeds, introduced us to the sweetness of speaking the prayer in Hebrew then in English. When we were a new couple, we bought pillow stuffing plus yards of white muslin. Back then, we had more time than money. We designed, and painted each pillow, customizing designs for our loved ones. After many hours of ironing and sewing, we gift wrapped each one to present on Christmas Day. Funny, several of the pillows we made were cherished for some twenty years, on sofas and beds. 

Annual Ner Shalom Chanukah Party on Saturday, Dec. 16th.

The event happens from 5:30-7:30 PM and it is FREE but you MUST RSVP. Potluck Assignments: If your middle name begins with A-H, bring a dessert. I-Q: main course. R-Z: appetizer. Remember vegetarian or kosher fish (i.e., fins & scales). If you want to be in the inner circle – a real VIP! -- for this party, volunteer to help make latkes, receive the potluck offerings, or be part of the clean-up crew. Sign up by emailing

Want handmade gifts, but don’t have time? Shop local

Stone’s Throw Gifts has plenty. Want chemical-free body care lotions, scrubs, herbal bath skin soothers? Want a unique pair of earrings or necklace? They have intimate artwork, meditation crystals, handmade ceramics, and glass art objects. After shopping, are you too tired to cook? TryCotati Sal’s Pizza. Eat in or take out. Pizza, salads, sandwiches, calzones and more. Open 7 days a week, delivery available. 707-664-8460.

Want a new tradition or want to laugh? Try this Sonoma Arts Live play, Inspecting Carol

A hit about a small professional theater company striving to maintain a funding mistake an amateur actor for an NEA inspector and fawn all over him while still trying to mount their tired, yearly fundraiser production of A Christmas Carol. As more and more things go wrong, hilarity ensues. Although this play is in the City of Sonoma, not Cotati, this production is highly recommended by Mary-Kay Gamal. Gamal is a playwright, Classics scholar and retired Emeritus professor of literature and classical studies. She has guided a Classical Books Club meeting at the Sonoma Branch Library. Our family keeps a tradition of reading aloud to each other, usually adventurous novels, such as the legends of King Arthur. I love our Sonoma County libraries. Each branch stands full of books, movies on DVD, and books on tape all for your holiday fun. For local Cotati holiday events see the Gazette calendar for Breakfast with Santa, Tree Lighting and more.

Send me your favorite or humorous Cotati memory

I want to get to know our Cotati readers. Please share either a favorite Cotati memory or mention fire safety tips or a change you have made due to the fires. Thanks. Email:



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