We Salute The Frontline Workers

This pandemic has been rough on all of us but we can’t imagine the toll it’s taken on our frontline workers! No matter if you work in the medical field, the food industry, or many of the other service industries (just to name a few) we salute you!

5 Ways To Say Thank You To A Front Line Essential Worker!

Here’s a few ways to say thank you.

  1. If you have a friend or a neighbor who is a front line essential worker then consider just walking up to them and say “Thank You” for your service.
  2. A lawn sign. It doesn’t have to be a fancy store bought lawn sign. It can be a home made sign on a bed sheet, some construction paper, or even some plywood. The important thing is you do your best and you make it the best you can with love.
  3. A gift card. You don’t have to spend any money but if you choose to you could buy a gift card from a gas station, a coffee shop or so many other places. We suggest a gas card because in these days where so many of us are saving money working from home, the essential workers are still driving to work. Unless they drive an electric card they are still putting gas in their cars. If your friends do drive an electric car (and good for them) then a coffee shop card will be very appropriate!
  4. A tasty beverage! We all have our favorite beverages. For some it’s a nice peaty bottle of scotch and for others it’s a diet coke. There’s nothing wrong with leaving something at the door with a small note that says Thank You!
  5. Baked Goods! Have you joined the ranks of the pandemic sourdough bakers? If so there’s nothing like dropping off a freshly baked loaf of your very own sourdough bread at a friend who is an essential front line worker’s home! Dropping off a loaf says “I care and I’m so glad that you care about others!”

No matter what you do, I believe it all starts with a thank you!



gusd app graphic

The GUSD App serves you Top Stories about what’s happening at all the schools in the Activity Stream, you can receive notifications (although at this point the notifications are almost nonexistent for most people. I’m sure that this will pick up over time as the App gains more ground.  You can see other items on the second page such as:
  • Calendar
  • News
  • Tip Line – Kinda cool. It’s a small form that the user can fill out and enter tips. I think it would be good to have some sort of explanation of what tips they hope to receive but it is a form of communication with the district so it’s a good thing. The  Tip Line has Categories that if you take the time to explore will help you to send out information about
    • Bullying
    • Drugs
    • Feedback (whatever that means)
    • Fighting
    • Kudos
    • Maintenance
    • Medical
    • Personal Crisis
    • Safety Risk
    • Suggestions
    • Technology
    • Threat
    • Vandalism
    • Weapons

I think it’s pretty cool that you can either provide your name and contact information or remain anonymous as well as provide the location.

Other Cool Things

Other cool things is the Parent Connect where you can see attendance and assignments. I just wish all the teachers would use the Parent Connect and not just a couple.


Another good feature is the directory for each school. That’s pretty obvious so I won’t go into detail.

The other features you’ll have to check out for yourself. There is the Center Track pay for EELP which looks like it just takes your to a regular webpage inside the app. The writing is tiny on a phone and so I think I would personally hate using it it but that’s just my opinion but check it out for yourself and try it out.

The Construction Update didn’t load so i don’t know what’s going on there and the Elementary Lunch Menu began another download of a PDF which I don’t think is a good idea. It’s going to need to download often, it’s going to be a resource memory hog that will use up your phone storage. I’m not sure why they don’t just port it into HTML 5 and be done with it. Oh and as much as I like the School Superintendent (I really do, he seems like a good guy) I don’t understand why he has is own section in the App. If it’s going to have some important information then at least tell us what sort of information it will have.

Anyway, decide for yourself if you think it’s a useful app. I think it is. I’m grateful that we have it.

Here are the directions from the GUSD website about how to get the Glendale Unified School District App on your phone.

Instructions on how to get the App on your phone!

  • Download the New GUSD App!

    • Stream school and district news
    • Receive instant notifications
    • Check student information
    • Submit online tips

    Downloading the app is easy!

    1. Visit the App Store or Google Play
    2. Search for “Glendale USD”
    3. Download the app
    4. Select the schools you want to follow

Urban Toot enjoys the summer!

Hey, Is it just me or have you also noticed that it’s summer? Yup thats right. Summer Rules, School is… well out and so the good folks at Urban Toot have decided to blog on a summer schedule. We know, we know, you will miss us. You want to hangout at the pool or at the beach. Sure we can do that. Just bring your favorite book, a bottle of something tasty to drink and some sun tan lotion and we’ll all be set.

Okay, Okay, just kidding.


The truth is that Urban Toot loves Summer and we really want to enjoy it. We’ll be posting from time to time, but just not our normal 5 articles a week. So for the summer we’ll be posting here and there. We’ll be checking the comment box below. If you really want us to come back leave us a message below. Tell us what you like about Urban Toot and what type of articles you’d like to see more of. We’ll do our best to oblige.

Biking in Glendale

Who isn’t excited about all the energy that is going into biking in Glendale?

It was recently Bike To Work day in Glendale and from all my bike loving friends I heard that was pretty cool. But did you know that the City of Glendale has teamed up with Los Angeles County Biking Coalation to have a month of bike riding activities? I didn’t know until I visited their website. You should as well!

The City of Glendale Traffic & Transportation Division currently is trying to bring Glendale to present with a new revison of the city’s Bikeway Master Plan. The city is preparing the Honolulu Avenue Road Diet Test Case (“Project”). What this means is that in certain parts of the city, bike lanes will be installed and the current roads will be narrowed.  The website describes the actual prjoect in these terms:

No Helmet Bike Rider!

Key Project characteristics include:

  • The Project’s easterly limit will be Orangedale Avenue. The Project’s westerly limit will be based upon funding availability; Public Works anticipates the westerly limit will fall between La Crescenta Avenue and Whiting Woods Road.
  • The existing and proposed cross sections of Honolulu Avenue are described below:
  • Between Orangedale Avenue and La Crescenta Avenue, the existing four through travel lanes will be reduced to two through travel lanes (one per direction). In lieu of the two through travel lanes being eliminated, a two-way-left-turn lane and designated bicycle lanes (one per direction) will be created. Existing separate left-turn lanes and on-street parking will continue to be provided.
  • Between La Crescenta Avenue and (approximately) Whiting Woods Road, the existing four through travel lanes will be reduced to two through travel lanes (one per direction). In lieu of the two through travel lanes being eliminated, designated bicycle lanes (one per direction) will be created. The existing two-way-left-turn lane, separate left-turn lanes, and on-street parking will continue to be provided

You can read more about it here.

Glendale Bike Riders

We just hope that the City of Glendale and the County of Los Angles provides it’s citizen’s a fair amount of education about sharing the road between Cars and Bikes. I’m a little nervous because as Urban Toot has reported in the past (http://urbantoot.com/bad-driver-bad/) Glendale has the third worst driving record in the country.  I cringe to think what it will be like having more bicyclists on the road.

However it’s not just the job of the car drivers to be safe. It’s also the job of the bicyclists. Bicyclists need to remember to:

  1.  Wear a helmet.
  2. Follow all traffic laws (including stopping for all redlights)
  3. Use hand signals.
  4. Adults, stay off the sidewalk!
  5. Always be in control of your bike!

10 Questions to Ask When Looking for a Preschool

The things to look for in a preschool = the right fit. When looking for a preschool life the options of various programs can be overwhelming. Here are ten questions to ask when looking for a preschool:

1. Class size, as well as the size of the entire school. Small is better.

2. Student/teacher ratio. How many adults are with the children. More is better.

3. Food. What do they serve the children to eat and how often.

4. Quiet time. Are there areas where children can be quiet, such as a play dough, art or reading table.

5. Communication. Listen to how the children are spoken to.

6. Teachers education and work experience : more is better. AA degree preferred as aminimum in early childhood education.

7. Directors education and work experience. BA degree minimum, masters preferred.

8. Art. Are the children engaged in being artistically creative every

day, and how.

9. Music. Is there singing, dancing and music being played all through out the day.

10.Literature. Is there children’s literature in the classroomand being read consistently.

With these questions you can find the rightness of fit for your child based on learning what is the core philosophy of each school you visit. It is a big decision, based on a brief visit, recommendations, and trust. Listen to your feelings.  I know there are many wonderful preschools in Glendale and the surrounding communities to meet your needs.


Debbie Bacino has been an early childhood educator for the past twenty years as a preschool teacher, director and parent educator. She is a member of the National Association of Early Childhood Educators, Pasadena City College’s Advisory Board and a local preschool directors networking group. Debbie is the owner and Director of La Canada Preschool. Her vision is to provide the best environment for children to experience discovery and their sense of wonder at this magical moment in human development.


Flickr Creative Commons images: Reading by Kaylhew, Crafts by Mrs. Flinger, Music by Cambodia4kidsorg

Earth Day in Glendale!

Earth Day

April 21 & 22

Looking for some good Glendale Earth Day Celebrations? You should check out whats happening at Descanso Gardens!

Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night
Saturday | 3:30 p.m. | Under the Oaks Theater

“If music be the food of love, play on!” Revel in the pleasures of the Bard’s luminous comedy presented by the California Shakespeare Ensemble in the shade of Descanso’s oak trees. Enjoy live harp music ahttp://urbantoot.com/wp-admin/edit.php?page=cal#nd purchase selections from an organic wine bar as part of the revels. Free with admission. Recommended for ages 12 and older.

Mobile Homeboys in concert
Sunday | Noon-2 p.m. | Under the Oaks Theater

This rocking ensemble is a Descanso musical favorite. Sit back and enjoy an afternoon of hard-charging country-flavored rock and roll. Free with admission.

Earth Day Activities & Barbecue
Sunday | 11 a.m.-3 p.m. | Main Lawn

Learn more about ecosystems at Descanso’s annual Earth Day celebration. Children can explore nature through hands-on activities. Discover the “locavore” culinary movement, celebrating locally raised food, at Patina’s eco-friendly barbecue where mouth-watering selections will be sold. Most activities free with admission.





Yet More Sparkletts!

A reader sent this photo of what appears to be Sparkletts Water containers outside a City of Glendale facility. Here is what the reader wrote:

…took this yesterday. It’s the building on Verdugo at Glorietta. It’s the water bldg where the metropolitan water blends and is treated along with Glendale water from the Glorietta wells.

After reporting that the Urban Toot staff personally witnessed and documented a Sparkletts water delivery to the city, it’s not a stretch of the imagination to believe that these are legitimate water bottles from a recent Sparkletts water delivery.

We have to ask. Why is the city buying bottled water instead of refilling from the tap?   Especially since a few years ago they promoted just that by supplying reusable “Fill & Chill” bottles to their customers with the motto of “Drink it right From the tap.”

Times are tough, lets start saving some of the tax payers money!





8 Things that make me wonder what’s going on in Glendale?


  1. The City of Glendale has begun the process to stop rental subsidies that are found in Section 8.
  2. Gangs from outside of Glendale are burgling our City.
  3. The City Council has approved an increase in water rates.
  4. Palate the uber fancy, restaurant in downtown Glendale has apparently shut down.
  5. Graffiti appears to be on the rise.
  6.  Glendale has an overabundance of office space that is vacant.
  7. $1 million in education dollars for the Early Education and Extended Learning Program has been slashed to the chagrin of 2600 students.
  8. Herion is being sold in Glendale and one of it’s users has even driven into a Police Officer.

What’s going on Glendale?

Graffiti in Glendale


These photos of graffiti were taken this past week of March 25th in North East Glendale. They were reported to the Neighborhood Services Program. Let’s see how long it takes to be rid of it? Glendale is an amazing community. Let’s not allow graffiti to set hold. Report it ASAP to the City via the Neighborhood Services Program.

City Council Graffiti Policy

Report Graffiti



Parkview Pet Clinic

As many of you may or may not know, Parkview Pet Clinic has been in existence for over 30 years.  Dr. Martin owned and ran the clinic for the past 28 years. If your pet is  not a patient, I am sure that you have driven by it hundreds of times.  Parkview is located in the heart of the “Woodlands,” off of Canada Blvd. and across from McDonalds.  Over a year ago, Dr. Martin retired as a veterinarian and sold his practice.  Since that time, there have been many exciting changes going on within the clinic.

I recently caught up with Dr. Lauren Tang, VMD, MS, who was hired by Parkview a year ago.  Dr. Tang grew up in Southern California but completed her education in Pennsylvania.  She received a degree in biochemistry, a Masters in Chemistry and then her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine.  After completing her education she returned to California and completed additional training in intensive Small Animal Medicine and a Surgery Internship at VCA West Los Angeles Animal Hospital.  Dr. Tang is a part of a team of veterinarians at Parkview, including Dr. Kristi Nichlaus, Dr. Paul Schneider and Dr. Paul Jansak

“Dr. Tang is known for compassion for her patients and clients, and her thoroughness in providing excellent patient care. She treats a wide variety of emergency and non-emergency cases with a keen interest in soft tissue surgery,”  www.parkviewpetclinic.com.

I asked Dr. Tang what brought her to Parkview and she reported, “I joined this practice because I could practice affordable, high quality medicine.  The modern equipment is just one of the tools that I can use to best serve my clients and patients.  The prices are low but this doesn’t mean that the quality is bad.  When an owner comes to me with a problem, and I make a recommendation, if they can afford those recommendations and I can diagnose and treat the problem, everyone wins”. She was impressed with the modern equipment of the clinic and the dedicated staff.  She explained the importance of having state-of-the-art clinic equipment in order to make accurate and timely diagnoses for the animals.  Despite the quaint exterior appearance of the clinic, it has a variety of very modern diagnostic equipment.  Dr. Tang also spoke about the high level of staff dedication at Parkview.  One of the technicians, Rene, has been at the clinic for over 20 years.

Dr. Martin ran a thriving clinic and now the new team of veterinarians are excited to make some modern changes.  They have revamped the clinic website, www.parkviewpetclinic.com, which I recently reviewed and was impressed.  You can make appointments on the website, e-mail your vet, review your pet’s vaccination history, request refills of prescriptions, create a “pet portal”, and there is a “care guide” section which lists 50 pages of canine care articles that have been screened and approved by the vet. staff.  The articles cover everything from dangerous household plants to ways to help your arthritic dog. They also include the contact information for the local emergency clinic for after-hours care. Dr. Tang reported that the website is still “under construction” with more improvements coming.  In the future they will create a way for pet owners to purchase specialty products (foods) online, to be delivered to the owners home.

The clinic offers many, many services for pet owners.  They offer dental care, puppy and kitten care, radiology, senior care, surgery, vaccinations and wellness exams.  Parkview also continues to offer kennel services for when owners go on vacation.  They have a team of dedicated staff that care for your pet while you are out of town.  They walk your pet three times a day. This is a great option for pets with health conditions that require medication (just a $5 fee to administer medications during their stay). The costs is $20 for dogs under 20 lbs., $27 for dogs 21-44 lbs. and $30 for dogs over 45 lbs. You can board your cat for $22 a day.  I did not know that they also have day boarding as an option.  The cost is $15 for the day and the staff will walk your dog a minimum of 2 times but often 3 times during the day.  The day boarding hours are from 8 a.m. with 5:30 p.m. pickup time.  You do not have to be a client of Parkview to reserve a spot within the kennel.  The clinic also offers specialty pet foods, treats and flea treatments for sale.

I was excited to learn that this week Parkview will launch a new program to reward their clients. They will be starting a referral program.  How it works is that if a client refers a friend to the clinic, that friend will receive a free consultation and examination.  Then the client who referred the friend will receive a $20 credit.  Dr. Tang explained that they receive most of their new clients through personal referrals and word of mouth.  I know that I learned about Parkview over 5 years ago through friends in our neighborhood.  Dr. Tang said that they have been talking about starting this program for a while and they feel strongly about thanking their loyal clients and rewarding them for referring others to the practice.

One of the very positive changes that I noticed was the change in office hours.  The clinic is now open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m.  This is a huge bonus for working pet owners and also for illnesses and emergencies that occur on the weekends.  Dr. Tang reported that she works on Sunday and that this is one of the busiest days of the week. After-hours emergencies are still referred to the local Eagle Rock Emergency Clinic (323-254-7382).

Personally I feel most at home at a pet clinic where I feel that the doctors and staff care about me and my pet.  I got this overwhelming sense of caring when speaking to Dr. Tang about her work and Parkview. Our family switched from a clinic in Pasadena due to their lack of caring and sensitivity.  I look forward to continuing to bring my dogs to Parkview in the future as I know they will be well taken care of.

Maggie Mason, M.S.W.

Mother of two humans and two canines.  Author and therapist in “pre-mom life”.

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