Food for Body and Soul

November ushers in a bounty of celebrations with friends and family as well as sharing and enjoying food from each other’s tables.

winter squash

With a desire to create a new seasonal dish to share, I concocted a recipe using sweet dumpling squash. The orange-maple flavor compliments the mild taste of the sweet dumpling and makes this recipe a delicious side dish.

Maple-Orange Winter Squash (Vegan)


4 cups cooked and cubed sweet dumpling or other winter squash

1 cup (plus ¼ cup.) caned light coconut milk or coconut milk beverage

1/8 tsp. Nutmeg

1/8 tsp. Pumpkin pie spice

¼ tsp. Cinnamon

3 tbsp. Pure maple syrup

1 tbsp. Coconut oil

2 tsp. Fresh grated organic orange zest

pinch salt


1) Cut the sweet dumpling squash in half. Scoop out the seeds and stringy membrane. Place the sliced squash in an oiled pan. Add four tbsp. of water.


2) Bake squash for 45 minutes at 375. Squash should be soft and almost cooked through. Remove from oven.


3) After the squash cools, peel off the skin with a sharp knife and cut into ¾ in. cubes.

(Anytime after step 1 through 3, cooked squash can be refrigerated for 1 or 2 days until ready to use)

4) In a sauce pan, add all the ingredients except the orange zest and 1/4 cup of the coconut milk. Cover the pan and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5) Remove from heat and add the orange zest. (The orange flavor is predominate in this dish so you may want to reserve a 1/2 tsp. of the zest use to adjust to your taste).

6) You can stop here if you like and serve the squash chunky style or add all the ingredients to a blender along with the remaining ¼ cup coconut milk and puree until smooth.

Transfer to a serving dish. If desired add additional maple syrup to taste. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream or toasted pecans.



Winter Squash is a good source of vitamin A, Vitamin C, magnesium and potassium.

Food For My Soul

Celebrating 95 years!

I have a lovely lady in my life who never fails to say how much she loves me and how much I mean to her.

Mom-95th_My mother-in-law is a spunky woman with a sweet disposition and enthusiastic joy for life. She celebrated her 95th birthday this month!

Shirley is still as sharp as they come. She is taking classes at Saddleback College and she stays fit doing group fitness classes with her 100 year old friend! If you asked her what her secret is to her longevity and quality of life, she will tell you, “it’s LOVE.” My mother-in-law has a huge heart for people. With a fun loving spirit, she regularly walks up to strangers and engages them in conversation.


My daughter, Lindsay, shares a special bond with her Nana.

Mom frequently tells me how blessed she feels to have wonderful friends and family in her life.  I am equally blessed to have such a terrific mother-in-law.


I am very grateful for this amazing woman and the beautiful family and extended family she created!

From my heart to yours, happy Thanksgiving and blessings to you all.

~ Linda


“The Lord is good to everyone; he is merciful to all he has made. Lord, everything you have made will praise you; those who belong to you will bless you… All living things look to you for food, and you give it to them at the right time.” – Psalm 145: 9, 10 & 15 (NCV)


© All materials contained within this blog are copyrighted and may not be used without expressed written permission.

Hitting the Sweet Spot – 300 Minutes per Week

If you knew there was something you could do to stave off breast cancer, would you commit to doing it? An association between physical activity and breast cancer is supported by over “100 epidemiologic studies, with strong biologic rationale supporting fat loss as an important mediator of this association.” ¹

Women, particularly postmenopausal women, may derive special benefits from exercise because excess body fat has been associated with increased risk of postmenopausal breast cancer.

I teach group fitness classes at Total Woman Gym + Spa. I have the pleasure of seeing woman transform themselves and get healthy. You can too with consistency and commitment to an exercise program. Do it for yourself and your family. Health is wealth!

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so get up, get out and go!


Linda Eichberg Group Fitness Instructor with students: Riley, Kim and Sonia.

These are some of the ladies I have taught. Two of them are mother and daughter. It brings a smile to my heart when mothers and daughters exercise together.

Commit To Be  Fit – 60 Minutes 5 Days a Week

In a randomized trial of 400 postmenopausal women who were evenly split into two groups, either 150 minutes or 300 minutes of vigorous exercise per week, the women who exercised more averaged more total weight loss.

Any aerobic activity that raised the heart rate 65% to 75% of heart rate reserve was allowed. Most of the activities involved walking, the elliptical trainer, bicycling, and running. So it doesn’t necessarily mean spending a lot of money to get fit, just the price of some good running shoes.

The results of the study confirm, “our findings of a dose-response effect of exercise on total fat mass and several other adiposity measures including abdominal fat, especially in obese women, provide a basis for encouraging postmenopausal women to exercise at least 300 min/wk, longer than the minimum recommended for cancer prevention.” ²

Putting Fitness and Compassion Into Action

AIDS Walk Los Angeles-2015_

On October 11, I completed a cardio fait accompli at the 2015 AIDS Walk Los Angeles 10K. It was a hot 100 degrees that day. Talk about burning fat!!

Our team raised over $7,500.00 to help APLA with the wonderful work this organization does in educating the community, helping people living with HIV and AIDS research.


Ready set go!


The Eichberg family and friends, aka “Team Rob”

We all made it! Hot and tired but what an amazing feeling to know we were part of such a wonderful cause. Erin and Alison are wearing crowns because they were top fundraisers. Way to go ladies!


My grand nice, Riley at the finish line. I’m so proud of her!

Look who we ran into after the walk, Drew Carey! Drew is a big supporter of the AIDS Walk Los Angeles. He was charming and so sweet to pose for a photo with us after a long day!


With Drew Carey at 2015 Los Angeles AIDS Walk

My family and friends walked in memory of my brother-in-law, Rob Eichberg and step brother-in-law, David Greenes, both of whom died of AIDS. 

“Each of us is radiant energy and all we truly have to give & receive is love.” – Rob Eichberg Ph. D. ³

Much love, Linda

“Whoever loves his brother lives in the light and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.” – 1 John 1 :10

“You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.” – Luke 6:36 (NLT)


1 & 2.

3. Rob Eichberg was a  PhD in Psychology. He shared his knowledge, understanding and love with the gay community and their families. His teaching on unconditional love brought wholeness to the broken. He authored the book “Coming Out: An Act of Love” and co-founded, National Coming Out Day.

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Celebrating Yoga with the King of Hip Openers

In our fast-paced world, it’s imperative that we make time for ourselves to reboot and refocus. The practice of yoga can do wonders for our peace of mind and physical well-being.

“A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body…” Proverbs 14: 30 (NLT)

Pigeon is King

Pigeon pose is one of my very favorite yoga postures because of it’s therapeutic benefits. This asana has done wonders for me and my clients in healing hip and back pain. I’ll highlight this special yoga position for Yoga Appreciation Month!


Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (One-Legged King Pigeon Pose) also called Pigeon Pose

Benefits of One-Legged King Pigeon Pose

Doing Pigeon Pose is essential in our chair-bound society. It is an extremely effective hip opener with the front leg in position to externally rotate the hip and the back leg in position to stretch the iliopsoas.

It has been discovered that the iliopsoas muscle group affects our mood and health. Known as the “muscle of the soul,” it is closely linked to our fight or flight response. Problems in these dorsal hip muscles may show up in other parts of the body such as the knees, pelvis, hips, neck/shoulders, sciatic nerve, and low back. ¹

Pigeon Pose stretches the thighs, groins, and abdomen. It can often be felt deeply in specific upper-leg and hip muscles, including the psoas, piriformis, TFL (tensor fascia latae) and gluteus maximus.” ² You can adjust the level of intensity in Pigeon to open these muscles even further.


King Pigeon can be performed simply or developed into a more intricate posture. It is a complicated position in the respect that there are many nuances to it that can help you get the most out of the pose. For this reason, I am not going to go into a long and detailed explanation on how to do this asana. I highly recommend you enjoy the benefits of this important pose under the care of a professional yoga practitioner.

With a grateful heart, Linda

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” – 3 John 1: 2 



Disclaimer: consult your doctor before practicing yoga or starting any exercise program.

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“War Room” – Approaching the Throne of Grace

We have a Father in heaven who loves us, a Father we can go to for help when we need it most, a Father we can talk to any time of the day or night.


“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” – Hebrews 4:16

This bible verse came alive in a movie I saw last week with a group of friends. In the film “War Room”, the main characters walk through life as if God is some distant relative with whom they have lost contact because he lives too far away. Tony and Elizabeth Jordan seem to be living the dream but we soon find out they have a strained marriage. They have lost connection with God and each other. Then, their lives take an unexpected turn when Elizabeth meets Miss Clara and is challenged to make a battle plan of prayer for her marriage and her family.

“War Room” is much more than a movie about the power of prayer. It’s full of biblical themes that we can reflect and chew on for a long time.


Victories Don’t Come by Accident.

In the film, Elizabeth feels hopeless. Her inner warfare is so intense, she has to actually cry out to the Lord and verbally rebuke the devil. There most certainly was a spiritual battle and until Elizabeth applied the tools Miss Clara gave her, she was losing the battle.

You Have a Spiritual Inheritance. Pass it on.

Raised a Christian, I grew up knowing I was saved by grace and the precious blood of Jesus but it wasn’t until I was in my forties that I fully understood God had a spiritual inheritance for me and my family.

“You see, you can have the experience of salvation and receive a new heart, but still miss the experience of walking into your spiritual destiny—your spiritual inheritance—the portion that is to be implanted in your new heart.” – J. Bynum ¹

It was through the Holy Spirit’s revelation and walking with God that I received what He had for me. I had to learn to use spiritual weapons to fight for it as Elizabeth did in the movie.


Mercy and Grace

“War Room” also addresses the challenges men and women face after they confess their wrongs and make a move toward God in repentance. Tony has to decide if he will make amends to his family and his company. Through his journey to restitution and reconciliation, he finds the power of God and the destiny God has uniquely planned for him.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9

In response to prayer, faith and obedience, God poured out His mercy on the quagmire Tony created in his life. I left the movie with a fresh appreciation for God’s abundant mercy. If it wasn’t for God’s forgiveness and mercy, none of us would stand a chance. 

“Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.”  – Luke 6:36

“War Room”, written by brothers, Stephen and Alex Kendrick, is full of biblical truths nicely woven into a good, believable story. 

At the start of the film this scripture fills the big screen:

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” – 2 Chronicles 7:1  

By the end of the movie my friends and I understood this passage in a fresh new way. “War Room”, appropriately exhibits how we can apply this scripture to our lives and receive the grace we need to live His Word and to protect our families.

I highly recommend this movie from Sony Pictures!

With much love and gratitude, Linda


  1. “My Spiritual Inheritance” (a book about walking in your destiny) by Juanita Bynum

The Rock Eternal



I blend my body with the strength of the mountains.

I blend my mind with the expanse of the open skies.

I blend my spirit with the majesty of God’s creation.

– Linda Eichberg

“Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord himself, is the rock eternal.” – Isaiah 26:4

The Beach Body 24 Hour Fix

“I use a mirror to see myself, but the mirror reflects only the image I can see with all its imperfections. I’m sure that somewhere God is laughing at me. She laughs because she sees more than I do. She can see through me. As I turn away from the mirror, for the first time I see my self, my essence, and my beauty reflected in God’s eyes.” – 365 Prescriptions for the Soul ¹

I don’t know any woman who doesn’t have some part of her body she would like to improve, me included, but I no longer feel I have to ‘punish’ my body into a certain form. Instead, I try to attain a long loving relationship with it.


I am not going to tell you about a 24 hour crash diet or miracle fitness work out. What I will tell you about are my favorite products and treatments that will leave you feeling pampered. Plus, they will immediately improve the look and feel of your skin and get it ‘beach ready’.

Dry Brushing For Healthy Skin

Dry brushing is easy to do; it takes less than 5 minutes and it’s great for sloughing off dry flaky skin. You will see improvement in the look and texture of your skin right away.


Dry brushing aids in the elimination of toxins from the body.

How It’s Done

  • Use a brush with natural bristles like 100% wild boar or similar. The bristles should be stiff but not too hard. Look for one that has a handle long enough to reach your back.
  • You should only brush towards the heart, making long sweeps, scrubbing in a circular motion.
  • Start at your feet, moving up both sides of the legs. On your stomach, direct the brush counterclockwise.
  • Next, you’ll work from the arms toward your chest, moving your way down your back.
  • Brush several times in each area, but not too hard; this should be an enjoyable experience. Skin should be invigorated but not irritated or red.

Health Benefits

Dry brushing works most beneficially when it’s performed daily. It increases the circulation, opens the pores and stimulates the lymphatic system which will help the body release toxins. You will notice your skin is smoother with a rosy glow!


The Skin is the Largest Organ of the Body.

After brushing, your lotions will absorb more quickly, so treat your body to natural, chemical free skin care products. A particular favorite of mine is Raw Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, one of natures most amazing gifts. It contains beneficial vitamins and minerals like Iron for oxygen transportation and vitamin E, an antioxidant vitamin that protects cells from damaging free radicals.

Another natural oil I love on my body is Meyer Lemon infused Cold Pressed Olive Oil. Feels great, smells great and tastes great on food!

St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse

Self Tanner

Once your skin drinks in your oil or lotion, it’s ready for self tanner. My first choice for self tanner is St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse. It will give your skin rich, long lasting color that will deepen over a few hours time; and it has a pleasant fragrance. I recommend the applicator mitt, sold separately, to ensure an even streak-free application.

Best Natural Moisturizing Sunscreen

I have spent a lot of time trying to find a good moisturizing natural sunscreen for the face and the body. A lot of natural sunscreens are drying and leave a chalky film on the skin, but not DeVita brands.

Their natural skin care products are very hydrating, partly because they contain hyaluronic acid. For my face, I use DeVita Solar Protective Moisturizer. It blends well with serums and with make up. Their C Serum is great too, as well as their Rose Facial Toner. It smells heavenly! I also recommend DeVita’s Solar Body Moisturizer.

DeVita skin care


For getting sunscreen on to those hard-to-reach spots, Aquasentials has  an easy lotion applicator with a long curved handle. Bass products developed a nice folding applicator, convenient for traveling or carrying in your beach bag.

Water Resistant Lotion

If you are going to be swimming, you will need to use a sunscreen that is more water resistant than DeVita’s. CeraVe Sunscreen is my alternative for a chemical-free lotion when I am enjoying water sports. Most of the time I walk or practice yoga on the beach, so I use DeVita’s products more often.∗


Enjoying a good yoga stretch for the hips and thighs after a long walk on the beach.

To have beautiful, healthy skin for the long term, nothing beats a wholesome diet filled with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables along with daily exercise.

Your body is your vehicle. Love it. Take care of it.

Enjoy your beach day. I hope it’s delightful!  ~ Linda

Then my soul will rejoice in the Lord and delight in his salvation. – Psalm 35:9

∗ I have not been paid or compensated in any way to endorse the products mentioned in this blog.


1. 365 PRESCRIPTIONS FOR THE SOUL by Dr. Bernie S. Siegel

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Creating the Warrior Spirit


“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” – Ephesians 2:10

I am continually amazed at the gifts God gives us, the variety and the beauty! Some are subtle, almost unseen but still so necessary; while others are obvious, prominently displayed in the forefront. All receive equal honor because the Master’s hand created them.

God – The Giver of All Gifts

When I work in my job as a yoga and Pilates teacher, I remember my faith and that God can use me for healing and health-giving purposes. Since I am very flexible, I have to keep in mind that I can push my students too far. It’s a delicate balance between healing and harming.


Warrior 1 opens the heart with hands reaching towards heaven and feet grounded on a firm foundation.

Looking up to God, the giver of all gifts, I have hope and motivation because I know I am His craftsmanship he is not finished with me yet. He is still carving, shaping and polishing to create something special for His grand design and His plan for my life.

I am grateful for God’s patience and guidance. I know He will take me exactly where I need to be. Wherever I am, I have the opportunity at all times, to do good works and reflect God’s love.

“Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.” – Isaiah 64:8


Warrior 3 Pose uses balance, strength, grace and mental focus.

Warrior of the Lord

This week I had the chance to see a very unusual and remarkable creation, a God breathed sculpture carved from a 2,000-year-old redwood stump. warrior-of-the-lordThe “Warrior of the Lord” is a dramatic 7-foot-tall carving and has an impressive 9 foot wing-span. With his wings spread and his cloak is flowing. The majestic archangel stands ready to take on his fight against evil.

warrior-of-the-Lord-SafonovThis beautiful piece of art carved by Alexandre Safonov, stands in front of an antique store in mountains of Agoura Hills. The artist’s creation was inspired by the Holy Spirit. “I feel the Holy Spirit”, Safonov said. “I put the energy of God into this piece.” ¹ Alexandre prayed every time he started work on his masterpiece.

“This is a warrior; he represents God and the word of God.” – Alexandre Safonov

His eyes seem to be looking up in adoration to God.

The Armor of God

When I saw the statue, I immediately thought of several scriptures, particularly Ephesians 6:10-18, about spiritual warfare and putting on the ‘Armor of God’. ²

alexandre-safonov-warrior-of-the-lordThe archangel’s “Sword of the Spirit” carries a ‘B’ to represent the Bible, the word of God. His “Belt of Truth” bares the cross of Jesus and his massive “Shield of Faith” is emblazoned with the initials of Jesus Christ, ‘JC’.

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms”. – Ephesians 6: 10-12


Warrior Fathers – Men of Honor

Happy Fathers Day to all the men who are warriors for their families and especially to my husband, Steven, who is an amazing and supportive dad to our daughter and devoted to his family. He is a warrior for our family each and every day. We are blessed and I continually thank God.

Many blessings,


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~



2. Ephesians 6:10-18

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A Mother’s Blessing

i-have-no-greater-joy-3-john-1-4What a day! On May 21st, my youngest sister, Alisa, delivered the 21st of my nieces and nephews. I can say I am a very blessed Aunt! That’s a lot of hugs and kisses and yes, that is a lot of birthday checks!

Alisa-JulianAlisa amazes me, two days after a cesarean section, with staples still in her stomach and not getting sleep for days, she manages to look so good for this photo.

Behind the smile, Alisa lives with the fact that baby Julian was born with a hole in his heart and with a leaky heart valve. She has to navigate several medical options for him. Not knowing what lies ahead for her son, Alisa has stayed calm and joyful. She and her husband are standing strong in faith, taking it one day at a time.

A Rough Start

The arrival of my newest nephew reminded me of my daughter Lindsay’s early years. I started out as an awkward mother. After having a C-Section and being in pain, I didn’t have a lot of desire to bond with my daughter right away.

Lindsay was a beautiful baby with pink rose bud lips but she was a colicky baby, an inconsolable crying ‘thing’ that left me sleep deprived, cranky and depressed. I remember my father trying to cheer me up; he told me, “Lindsay is going to be your best friend some day.” I heard the words but at the time, I had a hard time conceiving of such a thing.

Lindsay moved on from her colicky phase. and into her ‘wild child’ era. She was only about 2½ or 3 when she dragged a chair to the 2nd story opening over the recreation room, stood on its ledge and waved good-bye to me, announcing that she was, “going to fly like Dumbo.” I never moved so fast in my life!

Motherhood was a wild ride. Lindsay was challenging, but today, Lindsay is one of my best friends and our love continues to grow. She’s a joyful, compassionate and giving woman, a devoted daughter who makes herself available for her friends and family. I wish I could take credit for how she turned out but the truth is, I had to surrender the whole motherhood thing to God early on. delight-yourself-in-the-lord-and-he-will-give-you-the-desires-of-your-heartI knew from the start I was in way over my head.

“Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4

We all have supreme hopes and desires for our children. I pray and put my hope  in God, but learning to “Delight in the Lord”, what is that exactly? How do I best do that? Am I walking with Him in love, joy and strength? I still ask myself these questions every day. My life line is this, I am grateful because my God is with me and for me. He will never leave me or forsake me. 

Persevere through the hard times; good times are coming! 

Joy For This Journey

On Mother’s Day, Lindsay gave me a special personalized gift and a sentimental note. Her words were so beautiful and heartfelt. I wish I could see myself the way she sees me.

Lindz also took her dad and I out for a cruise on her boyfriend’s family boat. His family’s generosity was amazing: flowers, food, great scenery and witty conversation. Everyone made it a lovely day.


Mother’s Day was followed by a very romantic get away with my honey, Steve. I am thankful; at this moment life is sweet.



God’s Promises to Never Leave Us

1. Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; “He will never leave you nor forsake you.” – Deuteronomy 31:6

2. The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” – Deuteronomy 31:8

3. No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.” – Joshua 1:5

4. “May the LORD our God be with us as he was with our fathers; may He never leave us nor forsake us.” – 1 Kings 8:57

5. David also said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the LORD is finished.” – 1 Chronicles 28:20

6. For the LORD loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones. “They will be protected forever, but the offspring of the wicked will be cut off.” – Psalms 37:28

7. “For the LORD will not reject his people; he will never forsake his inheritance.” – Psalms 94:14

8. “The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the LORD will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.” – Isaiah 41:17

9. “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.” – Isaiah 42:16

10. Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” – Hebrews 13:5

 ≈  ≈  ≈  ≈  ≈  ≈


God promises are true. “His word is above all! We can move forward because, He goes before us. And if God is for us, who can be against us”?¹

With a grateful heart, Linda

“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” – Jesus in Matthew 28:20 ²



2. Matthew Chapter 28 –

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Woman In Gold – The Untold Story

I cried more than once. The movie, “Woman In Gold” is powerful and emotional. It’s a true story about holocaust survivor, Maria Altmann, played by Helen Mirren. The story follows her journey to recover a world-famous painting of her Aunt, Adele Bloch-Bauer. This film draws much of its strength from Mirren’s spirited performance. Ryan Reynolds effectively plays the attorney, Randy Schoenberg, who helps Ms. Altmann recover the works of art looted from her family by the Nazis. Reynolds’ lively rapport with Mirren gives momentum and life to the movie.


Adele Bloch-Bauer I (1907) by Gustav Klimpt, sold for a record $135 million in 2006.

In part, this movie is about loss and the atrocities of the holocaust but it is also about an exceptional family who loved music and art. Maria had a close bond with her Aunt Adele. Their affection and love for one another was well depicted in the movie.

Remember The Good

My family was invited to see the movie with Jim Altmann, one of Maria Altmann’s sons. I could tell it meant a lot to Jim to be able to share the moment with a big group of his family and friends. I asked him, “what was the predominate impression you took away from the movie?” Jim answered, “Good question; Every time I see it, something different stands out. Seeing it this time I’d say, remember the good memories.” Like Jim, I also felt that message resonated in the movie. The movie also carried the message of courage and the importance of remembering your ancestors.

One of the Great Battles in Art History


Steven Eichberg at the theater with a reproduction of Klimpt’s portrait of Adele, the original resides in Neue Galerie, New York.

At the reception following the movie, I inquired if Jim felt the film told the story factually. He said, “yes, it did do a good job of revealing most of the facts.” He loved the movie overall and felt the description of some of the events surrounding Maria’s  journey to reclaim her family’s property were well done. But exactly how hard and for how long Maria fought, all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, was not quite accurately described. Jim Altmann continues, “my mother was in her 90’s and Helen is in her 70’s. The process was very long, drawn out and exhausting, much more so than what was shown in the movie.” I can imagine how much more difficult the burden would have been on a woman in her 90’s. The trips to Vienna and the constant rejection and deception would have been a lot for anyone.


Memories of Maria Altmann lovingly displayed at the reception

A Quest For Truth and Justice

“Woman in Gold” was supremely entertaining, masterfully directed and brilliantly acted! One the most touching parts of the film was when Ms. Altmann shared a story about a woman, her friend, shown in another portrait. This woman was flesh and blood to her, part of her life. She was not a ghost from the past on a lifeless piece of art. So many families of good people were decimated during the Nazi reign. So much beauty was lost. This was the truth she wanted the world to know. Legal battles to win the return of art confiscated by the Nazi’s continues, with an estimated 100,000 works of art still at issue.


Ms. Altmann in her 90’s

This Generation of Altmann’s

The movie did not go very deeply into Maria Altmann’s family life during the time of the trials. Ms. Altmann’s son, Jim, lives in our area. He own’s a successful Southern California construction firm. His daughter, Alana, grew up with my daughter, Lindsay, and is one of her best friends.

My husband Steven and I spent a lot of time with Alana and love her like a daughter. Alana and her mom have taken my Yoga/Pilates classes. Lindsay has also shared quite a few special moments with the Altmann family. Lindsay enjoyed playing Scrabble with Maria and hearing her stories.  She gives accolades to Helen Mirren for the way she captured the spirit and essence of Maria Altmann in her portrayal.

Lindsay and Alana have helped each other grow into well-rounded, intelligent, hard-working woman who are comfortable in their own skin. They have nurtured close friendships and each of them is successful in their respective careers. I am so grateful to God for that.


Seeing these two grow to become the wonderful woman they are now has been my joy!

The Importance of Family

During the court battle for the art, Alana would come to our home and tell us bits and pieces about her grandmother and the long arduous legal proceedings. The movie reignited the emotion and anguish of that process. In contrast to that, I remember so well our happiness the day Alana told us, “We won!”

To Maria Altmann, it wasn’t about the money. The portrait of her aunt, displayed as Austria’s ‘Mona Lisa,’ was so much more than an expensive piece of art; it was the essence of her family’s memories and legacy. When their art was stolen by the Nazi’s, so were pieces of their history, the love and beauty they once shared together. It is essential to keep your family memories and legacy alive.



Alana and Lindsay during the wedding reception of Alana and Blaine Bisquera

I can say, because I know, Maria Altmann’s granddaughter, Alana, is shining her light and love in this world in marvelous ways.

Alana, and Maria’s other grandchildren are living legacies to her growing family and the story continues…

With hope and gratitude,

Linda Eichberg

“I know that You can do all things; no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.” – Job 42:2

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Wonders Wait Just Around the Corner – March Miracles


Going With the Flow

As I stepped outside my Westlake Village home, planning to rush off to the gym. The hills caught my eye. They were rich with spring color and they seemed to be inviting me to come and play.


March is usually the greenest month in Southern California and with the abundance of local trails available to explore, it would be a shame not to sample one or two. I decided to skip the gym and headed to the Westlake Vista Trail in the hope of seeing some seasonal wild flowers.

The trail starts at Triunfo Canyon, just off Lindero Canyon Road at the Pentachaeta Trail. You will stay to the right for Westlake Vista. Just around the bend of the trail head is a grove of natural Oak trees, a meadow and then a fork in the path. Both paths lead to the reservoir but I took the left trail which quickly rises to view rocky cliffs.


I was drawn toward the rocks to get a better look. There was a small trail off to the left but when I saw how narrow and steep it was, I quickly return to the main trail and soon arrived at the reservoir.

It’s a fairly easy hike for a healthy person but there are some loose rocks that make the steep sections of the trail very slippery. It took about 25 – 30 minutes to get up there. I probably could have made it in faster time but I was accompanied by my two Maltese.


To the right I could see what looked like a vast open flood plain. To the left was the crystal clear reservoir framed by rolling hills and mountains.

We met a couple of other hikers up there and one of them offered to take a photo of me and my cute furry boys.

It seemed that I was already at the top of the trail. It was lovely; but exploring further, I discovered another small trail to my left. I hadn’t seen it the first time I ventured to the reservoir. The path brought me up to a view of the water that exposed a grander aspect of it’s liquid expanse.


Higher and higher we climbed to another stunning vantage point as the captivating sounds of water birds echoed in the distance.


It was at this point that I felt like I was in another world, instead of the city of Westlake Village. It was as if I was at a destination vacation in the mountains but I only went around the corner to experience this magnificent view.


At the top, viewing the wide stretch of the regal hills, my ambitions were abandoned. There was only that moment, the clean air and the warm sun. The plans from this morning now belonged to the past. The present is filled with God’s love for me and the gift of His glorious creation.

“The flowers are springing up, the season of singing birds has come, and the cooing of turtledoves fills the air.” – Song of Solomon 2:12 (NLT)


The Westlake Reservoir is an oasis hidden high in the hills. Taking it all in was like water for my soul. It remains natural and untainted.  It’s not accessible by car and can only be enjoyed after climbing the mountain. But it’s here, so close to my home, waiting for it’s majesty and beauty to be discovered and enjoyed.


The view on the way down was also out of this world. And there they were, the wildflowers I was hoping for, my reward.


Their colors graced the gentle slopes calling me to dance and sing before their Maker. So beautiful, but only here for such a short time.


“Where flowers bloom so does hope!”

– Lady Bird Johnson

Our Time On Earth

My message is simple. There is always gratitude and beauty in every season of life, even in the trials and tribulations. My husband Steven and I are focused on caring for his dad and his wife, who are quickly declining from dementia. It’s difficult to experience this with them.

When we come to these hard moments in life, we find hidden strength in ourselves. We nourish our souls and receive refreshment in friends and in nature. We will all have to give an account of our lives, what we have been, and done. To give our parents companionship and joy in their advance senior years, is an enormous thing to them right now. Every lucid moment they have is a small miracle for which we are very grateful.

“The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever.” – Isaiah 40:8 (NLT)

Everything is a miracle. Have a blessed day! ~ Linda

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