Debra Garfinkle

I write all kinds of things. As an attorney, I researched and drafted legal decisions for a federal appellate judge. I have also published humorous books for children with Scholastic, five young adult novels with Penguin, an award-winning humor column for the Orange County Register, and many articles published in magazines and online.

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Ask the Experts Ask the Experts Compiled by Sascha Zuger Rating their Reading Q A I am thrilled with my tween wanting to read… but a little concerned about the maturity of some of her choices. As a parent, how much guidance or control should I have over her books — and Tween how would I even know what was what? I don’t have time to read all of the books she is, and certain graphic scenes aren’t always something that pops up in a skim. Congratulations on raising a reader! Reading can do wonders f

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HEALTH & WELLNESS GUIDE ADVERTISING SECTION A More Gentle Approach to IVF By Debra Garfinkle Recent medical advances in reproductive technology are, ironically, allowing doctors to interfere less to help women conceive. The movement toward “Natural Cycle IVF,” requiring fewer medical interventions for IVF, is slow but growing. One of the few U.S. fertility centers to primarily use Natural Cycle IVF is in Orange County. In 1978, Louise Brown became a household name and a subject of controversy as

After-School Activities for Children

At Chess Palace in Garden Grove, children can take classes, play for fun, and participate in tournaments. Chess Palace has been owned by the Ong family since 2003; some of its students have won national championships. Bionerds. Budding scientists from kindergarten through sixth grade can enroll in a four-week class in Irvine to learn about worms, bacteria, DNA, and fruit flies. Brain Builders offers Engineering with LEGO classes at dozens of public and private schools throughout Orange County

Getting Ready for Preschool

Some children may view preschool as the strange, scary site where Mommy abandons them. But most children consider preschool to be a fun place to learn exciting things and make new friends. What accounts for these differing attitudes? According to Dr. Mary Herzog, a psychologist with Laguna Family Therapy in Laguna Beach, the most important predictor of children’s happiness in preschool is the attitude of their parents. If parents are anxious about preschool, their children will pick up on their

Hero Dads: Five Fathers Making a Difference in Orange County and Beyond

Great fathers make a huge difference in their children’s lives. The five fathers profiled here not only affect their children’s lives, but benefit the community at large with their remarkable charitable efforts. Two of these men are famous athletes, familiar to many here and around the country. Three aren’t so well known. But all five have performed tremendous deeds for those in need that make them Orange County heroes. Sean-Paul Crawford believes his family epitomizes the American Dream. His p