Shop Local Gift Guide

Looking for that special something for the holidays? The Messenger has ferreted out many one-of-a-kind items that can be found close to home.


  • The Living Harmony Project (nonprofit): Custom made, decorative EMF/RF-shielding cell phone cases and bags and lap protectors (choose one) for laptops and gaming devices with your 100% tax-deductible donation or purchase to support education and mitigation services. Donate $135-$155: receive one hand-made RF Shielding cell phone case, bag or Lap Protector; Donate $225 or more: for a custom-made RF Shielding phone Case or Bag with hand-painted or leather transfer of art. Donate $3,300 to receive an EMF evaluation and mitigation in your home or office. Contact Monica Sheehan:; (310) 383-9781;; or for EMF evaluation, William Holland:;; (818) 292-1271.
  • Native Roots Indigenous Soap & Skin Care—Theresa Richau, owner. “We do not nurture what we do not love.” Soaps, lotions & balms, steam-distilled Hydrosol sprays and beard butters.,; (626) 665-5485.
  • Performance Equine Bodywork—Will Friday provides Masterson Method bodywork for horses, relieving tension and soreness in the horse, using acupressure, cranio-sacral and myofascial release techniques and guiding the horse through a range of motion in a relaxed state to release tension. For more information and to schedule an appointment:;  (310) 804-6783.
  • Topanga Living Café—From the moment you open the door, this is a feel-good place with a patio for you and your pup and an array of goodies, edible and non-edible for gift giving such as Sahaja essential oils, jewelry, children’s clothes, antiques and other gift items looking for a box with a bow as a Christmas or hostess gift. The best cappuccino in town. 1704 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga, CA 90290.; (310) 455-9888.
  • Topanga Mercantile—An extension of candle-maker Tom Vogel’s Topanga Candle Co., that has grown into an extraordinary “mercantile” with handmade candles (of course), local and antique art and artifacts, essential oil and its latest collection of crystals that seem to fly out the door. Look for their “Holiday Frolic,” December 2, 2-7 p.m. at the Canyon Courtyard. For more information:; (310) 455-2876;
  • Wild Gold Cold Pressed Camelina Oil—Source of healthy Omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin E for horses, dogs and people. Omega 3 fatty acids support natural anti-inflammatory processes in the body and vitamin E is a strong antioxidant. Wild Gold is GMO free and sustainably farmed. Available from Will Friday at; Facebook. (310) 804-6783. Free delivery in the 90290 area.






Does anyone read books anymore? You bet they do, whether the old-fashioned way or with Kindle, Nook or Audio. Give the gift of reading and imagination for yourself and book-loving friends and family.

Tree, by Melina Sempill Watts—” A debut novel tells the story of life in a California valley through the eyes of a tree. The hero of this book is, as the title suggests, a tree. Specifically, a live oak that germinates in Topanga in the 18th century,” writes Kirkus Reviews. An ingenious and satisfying tale about a single live oak.” Available in bookstores and at

Color and Light in Nature, by David K. Lynch and William Livingston (Second Edition)—You will never look at nature the same way again after reading this beautiful, hardbound book all about rainbows, halos, mirages, colors in the sky, water reflections, shadows, aurorae, colors of the sun, moon and stars, and all aspects of visual (naked eye) phenomena in Nature with tips on how to see and photograph them. Hundreds of glorious sights are described, explained and shown, most in color. Also available as a CD containing each chapter as a PDF file. $40, available only from the author at

Lynch is also author of the Field Guide to the San Andreas Fault, where he invites you “to see and touch the World’s Most Famous Fault.” $40, available only from the author at

A Rain of Nightbirds, by Deena Metzger—In this time of planetary crisis, Metzger brings together western science and indigenous wisdom meet in authentically defined characters. A riveting novel whose main character is nature in transition. Available at and in Kindle format ($9.99).

Baby Beat Generation, The 2nd San Francisco Renaissance (An Anthology)—Local poet and novelist Philip Daughtry is included in this anthology that not only looks back but speaks for the present and possibly predicts the future of what has been called the “Second San Francisco Renaissance, due largely to the emergence of a generation of “Baby Beats” following in the footsteps of Burroughs, Kerouac, Ginsberg, Corso, Ferlinghetti and Pélieu. Daughtry’s poems appear on pages 172-180. Available at

Children’s Book Author Sue Ganz-Schmitt—“Planet Kindergarten,” a genius way to ease kids into kindergarten. “Planet Kindergarten: 100 Days in Orbit”; “The Princess and the Peanut: A Royally Allergic Fairytale”; Even Superheroes Get Diabetes.” To buy:; or

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