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UnCommon Cause sets sail American Girl Fashion Show The return of Skinny Jeans

Lisa Westenberger in charge at The Commons

September 2011

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UnCommon Cause

10

American Girl Fashion Show

22

4

september 2011 • she magazine

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editor’s note

Well you’ve gone and done it again — put that warm, fuzzy feeling right in my core. Toward the end of last month hundreds of applications for She Wants in Her Skinny Jeans kept landing on my desk, which means one thing. I’ll take a page out of Sally Field’s book and venture to say, “You like us, right now! You like us!” And more importantly many of you are ready to take a plunge — do something for yourselves that you’ve never done before and really challenge your body and mind. We’re excited to take that journey with our final 12 contestants, whom we introduce in this issue. Thank you all for your interest in this healthy lifestyle program and for taking the time to enter. If you weren’t picked, start your own program and please write in and tell us about your progress. Of course, there’s always another chance next year. I’m excited about this issue. It’s not for any particular reason (because I love all my Shes equally) other than it’s our first issue this autumn. As I’ve said before, I love fall. There’s just something about this time of year — schedules start filling up and the community pulse picks up, too. In addition to the Skinny Jeans contest, we introduce you to a few other exciting events going on this season, such as Columbus’ first American Girl Fashion Show and the return of the famous UnCommon Cause Gala to its birthplace, The Commons. Speaking of The Commons, we check in with manager Lisa Westenberger and find out about her first few months on the job. Well as always, that’s not all we have in store, so it’s time for me to quit my yappin’ and let you get reading. Enjoy!

EDITOR Kelsey DeClue COPY EDITOR Katharine Smith GRAPHIC DESIGNER Stephanie Otte WRITERS Crystal Henry Andrew Larson Ian McGriff Jennifer Willhite

photographerS Andrew Laker Alton Strupp Stock Images Provided by Thinkstock

September 21, 2011 She ©2011 All rights reserved. Published monthly by The Republic.

SEND COMMENTS TO: Kelsey DeClue, The Republic 333 Second St., Columbus, IN 47201 Call 812-379-5691 or e-mail kdeclue@therepublic.com

Do you have a comment about a She article or feature? E-mail Kelsey your remark or short personal story that pertains to a topic you read about and we may publish it. It’s all about keeping She your magazine.

ADVERTISING INFORMATION: Call Cathy Klaes at 812-379-5678 or e-mail cklaes@therepublic.com. All copy and advertising in She are copyrighted and cannot be reproduced.

Check out past issues of She magazine at

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she magazine • september 2011

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september 2011 • she magazine

page 

Ready

to face

the gy m

More women accept challenge of ‘Skinny Jeans’ contest

story AND PHOTOS By Kelsey DeClue Last year 12 local women embarked on a mission to adopt a healthier lifestyle. They hoped to lose weight, gain energy and fit into their “skinny jeans,” which in the case of this contest represents that one formerly unattainable outfit that makes them feel sensational. In the end, one young mom was crowned the winner, but all the women who finished the program felt as if they’d won in their own way. This month, a new batch starts. More than 300 She readers sent in applications for a chance to compete in She Wants in Her

Skinny Jeans. A committee read each application, and several difficult choices had to be made to get to our final 12. Women from all over our readership area poured their struggles and frustrations with weight into the 300 words we gave them on the application. We received poems, pleas and posters. Some extras that set a few of the final 12 apart were a paper doll crafted with pull strings that cinched one hopeful’s waist — emulating the before-and-after of the contest. Another applicant wrote a song about the contest to the tune of “Poker Face” by Lady GaGa.

september 2011 • she magazine

Those picked are primed and ready for the 2011 challenge. For the next three months, they’ll train with the staff at Tipton Lakes Athletic Club, led by fitness director Ian McGriff and manager Megan McGriff. They’ll learn a new lifestyle of healthy eating, exercise and positive thinking. The winner will receive $500. This year’s contest is sponsored by TLAC, Renner Motors, Lockett’s Ladies Shop, Fair Oaks Mall, Columbus Clinic of Chiropractic, Hilliard Lyons, Red Lips Boutique and Bob Poynter of Seymour.

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Now meet our 12

contestants

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she magazine • september 2011

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september 2011 • she magazine

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Scott and Kelly Benjamin, from left, and Lesli and Rich Gordon Page 10

she magazine • september 2011

Adventure ashore By Jennifer Willhite Photos by Andrew Laker When they were approached about chairing this year’s UnCommon Cause fundraiser, Lesli and Rich Gordon and Kelly and Scott Benjamin saw it as a unique opportunity to give back to the community. Actively involved in the Columbus area, both couples share a deep-rooted love for the arts. Whether it is music, theater or art, the leaders for this year’s event have an appreciation for how influential the arts can be for young people. When Lesli Gordon and Kelly Benjamin were asked by Rebekah Walsh, resource and development director for Columbus Area Arts Council, and Sarah Cannon, vice president of First Financial Wealth Management, if they and their husbands would chair this year’s fundraiser, the two were surprised. But having worked with both Walsh and Cannon on other community events, they didn’t hesitate to accept.

september 2011 • she magazine

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Gordon, planned and major gifts officer for Columbus Regional Hospital Foundation, considers herself fortunate to have been introduced to the arts as a young girl. “As a child, there were two big events that I remember going to and being amazed,” she said. “The first was going to the Mexico City Ballet, and the second was seeing ‘Phantom of the Opera.’” She and her husband, Rich, are involved with Columbus Youth Hockey and Bartholomew County Humane Society and have worked closely with the Benjamins on other community events. One such event is Not on Our Ice, a scrimmage between figure skaters and high school hockey players to raise awareness about teen dating violence.

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If you go What:

When:

UnCommon Cause 6:30 p.m. Oct. 14

Where:

The Commons

Reservations: Deadline: Cost:

uncommoncauseauction.org

Oct. 8

$125/person $1,000/group tables

Benjamin, a deputy prosecutor, says she was shy growing up. Her involvement in choir and band offered an outlet for self-expression that didn’t require her to speak with anyone. “I loved music and loved to express myself that way,” she said. “Involvement in the arts helped me find a voice and offered a way of expression.” She says her husband, Scott, a podiatrist, understands how the arts can change lives. Following the birth of their second child, attending theater productions became part of their planned dates. “We chose the arts to attend because it can make you think, laugh, cry, ponder and cheer,” Benjamin said. “And it is fun to watch in amazement the talent that others have.” The theme of this year’s event, “Pirates of the High C’s: Taking Back the Commons,” is anticipated to be an evening of delightful debauchery inspired by the characters and storyline of the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series. A pirate theme is not only fun but offers an opportunity to incorporate the

theme into attire. Although it is a blacktie event, guests are encouraged to add a pirate-inspired aspect to their dress. “We are the pirates of the high seas, taking back what is ours,” Benjamin said. “Like they were taking back the Black Pearl, we are taking back The Commons.” The first UnCommon Cause to be held in The Commons since 2007, “Pirates of the High C’s” will incorporate more performance art by collaborating with Janie Gordon, choir director at Columbus North High School. “By allowing us to bring the students in, they get to see the community does, in fact, support them and at what degree they do,” Benjamin said. “And hopefully that inspires them to continue on with the arts and know that people appreciate it and will continue to appreciate it.” A witch, inspired by the Pirates’ Tia Dalma character, will welcome everyone as they enter the ship and will wander around during the evening offering pearls of wisdom to guests. Dinner will be prepared by Chef Jeff Maiani of Bis-

tro 310, and the band Endless Summer, of Indianapolis, will perform. As with past events, there will also be silent and live auctions. Individuals who would like to make contributions are encouraged to contact the Columbus Area Arts Council. UnCommon Cause benefits the United Arts Fund and programming in The Commons and provides operating support for the arts council. Last year it netted an estimated $65,000. “It is our largest fundraiser for the year,” said Walsh. “And I think the fact that they’ve been doing this for 36 years speaks to that.” The Gordons and Benjamins hope this year’s UnCommon Cause will garner even more support for the arts council, which offers so many events for Columbus to enjoy. “Getting involved with something like this to help raise funds to keep the arts alive is very important,” Benjamin said. “You get inspired by performance art.”

A unique boutique coming downtown

New Jeans Just Arrived!

NOW OPEN in downtown Columbus | 643 Washington Street | Tuesday-Saturday 11am - 7pm | 372-0477 september 2011 • she magazine

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Un ommon ommitment Lisa Westenberger keeps many balls in the air as manager of downtown’s showplace By Crystal Henry Photos by Alton Strupp Lisa Westenberger got her feet wet at The Commons when she was fresh out of college. And now she’s plunged into a rewarding career as the manager of one of Columbus’ hottest spots. She said her passion for the downtown started at an early age. Her father had a business downtown for more than 25 years, so growing up, she spent a lot of time hanging out there. She remembers watching her father, John Friend, walk all over the downtown doing business and often went on his rounds with him. He owned Smart and Johnson Abstract and Title Co. from 1968 to 1991. According to Westenberger, her father’s first office was on the site where The Commons stands now.

“He seemed to know everyone, and I remember thinking how I wanted a job just like that when I was older,” she said. Her father passed away in 2005. Her mother, Lois Friend, still lives in Columbus. Westenberger’s assistant, Jill King, said her boss has taken a page from her father’s book by getting to know the many patrons of The Commons. She makes time for anyone who comes through the doors, and she has an ability to listen, learn and take action in order to meet the needs of the community. And Westenberger is very invested in the community. Her mother was a volunteer architectural tour guide, so she spent many hours on the bus listening to her talk about the unique architecture of the city. Westenberger said at the time she didn’t really appreciate it, but subconsciously it helped her realize that CoPage 18

lumbus had something special to offer. While she was studying at Butler University, she got an internship at the Columbus Visitors Center. When she graduated, she took her first job with the Columbus Area Arts Council at the old Commons. She was looking for a way to enhance her home community. “It’s my passion,” she said. She left the arts council to spread her enthusiasm for revitalization to other cities through community and economic development. But when the job opened in the heart of her hometown, she had to take it. Westenberger became manager of The Commons in March before the building was officially open to the public. The Commons is a place where she can do the two things she loves most, work with people and be downtown. And although no job is without its chalshe magazine • september 2011

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lenges, she said this one has been particularly rewarding because the building has been received so well by the people in the community. “It’s just great to see people use it,” she said. “They love it.” She said even those who had their doubts when The Commons was under construction can surely see the positive response from the community and realize that this building was wanted and needed by the people here. Westenberger said one of the greatest accomplishments is the success of the playground, which is packed with children all day. She’s met people from out of state who have brought their children and grandchildren, and they are amazed at what a great space the city has for kids and families.

september 2011 • she magazine

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“It’s just great to see people use [The Commons] . They love it.”

Page 20

— Lisa Westenberger

With two new restaurants, Scotty’s Burger Joint and Puccini’s, opening in the retail space this fall, Westenberger expects to see even more people walk through the doors. Since she and her husband, David, have five children in their blended family, she knows the importance of having a place to come together. David is the executive director at Foundation for Youth, so a lot of their spare time is devoted to children’s activities. King said Westenberger’s role as a mother of five has made her an excellent multitasker and that her laid-back personality and encouragement help those around her excel at what they do. “Lisa is great to work with,” King said. When she does take a break, Westenberger likes to mountain bike, golf, ski and travel. She and her family are avid sailors, and they recently took a family trip to the British Virgin Islands where they chartered a sailboat for a week. David is a pilot, and she loves to fly with him. They flew their plane to the Bahamas a few years ago. But her working hours are dedicated to The Commons, which has already seen plenty of action in the short time it’s been open. Westenberger said the facility has exceeded its target rental revenue, and the staff is booking some events a year out. She said the building has hosted everything from wedding receptions to entertainment shows and business meetings. She attributes the success to the versatile design of the space. Westenberger praises her team and said they’re able to come up with solutions to any challenges they’ve faced. One challenge was the vandalism that occurred shortly after The Commons reopened, but she didn’t see that as a setback because of all the community support that came out of it. She was flooded with calls from concerned citizens who wanted to help. The reaction to the vandalism demonstrated the ownership the community felt for the building, she said. One of Westenberger’s goals is to make The Commons the heart of Columbus. She wants the space to be where people gather to have fun. She said seeing the parties and events come to life has been the best part of her job so far. To see florists, musicians, and lighting and sound technicians all come together to transform the space into something different each time has been exciting, she said. she magazine • september 2011

SUMMER IS OVER A major part of her job is to generate enough revenue to maintain the building, and Westenberger said if events continue at the same pace, it won’t be a problem. She hopes to accommodate all the organizations who want to use the space. One option is the free meeting room available to any notfor-profit. It has been filling up as more people discover it. Westenberger said the downtown area in general has been busier since The Commons opened. “If you let [the downtown] die, the core of your city is dead,” she said. “It’s where the energy is.” She said she will continue to promote The Commons as a beacon in Columbus. “I just feel lucky every day that I get to work at such an awesome place.”

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september 2011 • she magazine

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What a doll will raise money to fight childhood cancers

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she magazine • september 2011

By Kelsey DeClue She has garnered millions of followers across the U.S. She has movies, books and magazines devoted to portraying her likeness. She is both a historical figure and contemporary icon. There are nearly countless versions of her, and more arriving each season. She is the American Girl doll. American Girl dolls are a line of 18-inch collector dolls that portray young girls in a variety of ethnicities and historical settings. The mere mention of them is enough to make many 8to 13-year-old girls swoon. Fans of the dolls will surely be swooning next month when a fundraiser brings an American Girl extravaganza to Columbus. The Columbus chapter of the American Cancer Society is hosting the 2011 American Girl Fashion Show on Oct. 2. The event will raise money and awareness for the fight against childhood cancers. The last event of its kind was held in 2009 in Indianapolis. “It’s a big honor and opportunity for Columbus to be able to host an event like this,” said Beth Hardesty, local show organizer and ACS volunteer. “(American Girl) allows only one show per year, per state region, and we secured this year for the central Indiana region.” Half of the proceeds from the one-day event go toward childhood cancer research and half will support Camp Catch-aRainbow, a Michigan-based camp that serves children in Indiana, Ohio and Michigan suffering from or in remission from cancer. Each show is about two and a half hours and features models portraying American Girl characters, a high tea that emulates the food served in American Girl store restaurants, silent auction and doll salon. september 2011 • she magazine

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The American Girl

Fashion Show 2 performances 1 and 4:30 p.m. Oct. 2 Factory 12 Event Loft Tickets are $30. Information: www.agfscentralin.com or Beth Hardesty, 342-0446.

Page 24

Viewpoint will also have a booth selling American Girl books. However, this isn’t just any fashion show. The models portraying the famous American Girls have been plucked right from the Bartholomew County community and surrounding areas. More than 105 girls will be split to model in either the early- or late-afternoon show. The requirements to become an official American Girl model for the day? A passion for the dolls and the ability to fit either into a size 6x or youth size 10, the two sizes provided for the official costumes by the American Girl company. “This is not a beauty pageant. It’s about empowering little girls,” Hardesty said. “We didn’t care what age or body type as long as the girl could fit into one of the two sizes.” Each model will carry the doll she is portraying, and commentators will provide a story on her character. Hardesty said she realized many of the models are involved for reasons deeper than just a love of the dolls, even though a personal connection to the show’s nonprofit cause wasn’t a requirement. “Many of these girls have really touching stories that are just further facilitating what this event is really all about,” Hardesty said. One such model is 8-year-old Zoe Munger, who is modeling in honor of her mother, Stephanie, who is battling stage three breast cancer. “I want to help others with cancer, like kids with cancer,” Zoe said. “I want other kids to know it is hard. It is sad.” According to Stephanie, Zoe has been telling her friends about cancer, “like why I’ve lost my hair and why I have to wear scarves or wigs,” Stephanie said. “My favorite part is when someone asks her why I have cancer, she says, ‘Your body has cells that split in two. My mom had a bad cell that split and kept splitting and grew into cancer.’ “I think it’s amazing for an 8-year-old to be able to comprehend that,” Stephanie said. She said her fight has brought her closer to her daughters, Maddie, 12, and Zoe. “We actually shaved my head this year as a family on Mother’s Day, as that is right around when it all started falling out,” she said. “Since I’ve been in chemotherapy, I have been home more and have been able to spend more time with them over the summer.” she magazine • september 2011

“Many of these girls have really touching stories that are just further facilitating what this event is really all about.” — Beth Hardesty Ten-year-old Elizabeth Dwyer originally wanted to model because of her love for American Girl dolls; however when she and her mother, Kathy Dayhoff-Dwyer, learned the event was a fundraiser for the cancer society, the chance took on a new meaning. Elizabeth’s great-grandmother and paternal grandmother both lost battles to cancer. Her maternal grandmother is a breast cancer survivor, and the family knows many extended family members and friends affected by cancer.

“Our family has been touched by so many that are battling this disease,” Kathy said. “The message that we have learned, and we live, is that life is so very precious and fragile.” Elizabeth will be portraying American Girl “Josephina.” The American Girl Fashion Show will have two performance times — 1 and 4:30 p.m. at Factory 12 Event Loft. Tickets are $30. Information: www.agfscentralin. com or Beth Hardesty, 342-0446.

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september 2011 • she magazine

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g n i h t y r e v E

is pink

on purpose By Kelsey DeClue Next month, Columbus is going pink. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and last year The Republic participated in this national endeavor with Pink Purpose — days of breast cancer awareness observance with local stories about survivors, photos of community members decked out in pink and even an entirely pink newspaper. This year, we’re doing it again, and we’re going even bigger. Each Friday, starting Oct. 7, will be a Pink Friday, with special stories and promotions highlighted in the daily paper. Each Sunday, The Republic will recap the week’s events pertaining to breast cancer awareness. Some of the month’s events will include a special tribute section in the newspaper to honor loved ones who have lost the battle with this horrible disease, local high school students showing their support by wearing pink, community pho-

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tos and stories, and, of course, a day of news coverage on pink paper. The awareness month wraps up with the highly anticipated, annual She Pamper Party Oct. 28. It’s an evening devoted to fun with the girls. As always, we’ll have vendor booths with a range of products, such as jewelry, home décor and children’s items, as well as salons and spas offering pampering “samples,” such as mini massages and makeovers. This year the event will be held at The Commons. The Dancing DJs will entertain, and desserts from local caterers will be available. Guests are encouraged to dine downtown after the event, as many downtown restaurants will be featuring pink drinks. As the day for She’s Pamper Party draws near, we’ll update you on specific details. However, in the meantime, get ready for a “pink-stravagant” October and start deciding how you and yours will join in the fight against breast cancer.

she magazine • september 2011

september 2011 • she magazine

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Fit

tied

Page 28

she magazine • september 2011

Scarf makes quick wardrobe pick-me-up

By Samantha Critchell AP Fashion Writer NEW YORK — A scarf can be a wardrobe’s workhorse. It adds color, style, and, especially as the weather turns cooler, warmth. Now, if you only knew how to tie the thing. Don’t go for a complicated knot, says Talbots’ fashion director Tammy Vipperman. Flair largely comes from confidence, so any hesitation about tying the scarf will show, she adds, but there are plenty of easy knots that still kick up your outfit. “If you can fold laundry and tie a basic knot, you can wear a scarf,” she says. Her tips:

CASHMERE The classic winter scarf with fringe at the edges is nice because it’s practically flat when worn under a coat, Vipperman says. She prefers the “gentleman’s fold,” which really isn’t a fold: The scarf goes around the neck and the sides are flat against the body and positioned like lapels of a jacket. An alternate is to fold the scarf in half — so its length is two layers — make a loop at the fold, wrap the scarf around the neck, pulling the loose end through the loop. Vipperman likes to see this look in a bright, cheerful color against a neutral-colored coat.

september 2011 • she magazine

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Associated Press photos

THE NOODLE Vipperman’s word for the knit scarf with built-in ruffles is the “noodle,” because it stretches, bends and bounces. “You can sort of do whatever you want with it. It’s a terrific base,” she says. You get an Elizabethan-collar effect if you keep looping it around to the bustline level, tying it loosely at the back of the neck. Go a little tighter and you have a turtleneck. You also can wear it long and loose, not really tying it at all.

THE WRAP This is the scarf you want with you all the time. It goes under a coat, over a coat, with a low neckline or a high one, and it’s the perfect thing to keep at the office where the temperature can go up and down, Vipperman says. She doesn’t like it to be worn perfectly, though. She prefers to fold it corner to corner to make a triangle, put it over the shoulders on a slightly uneven bent, tie it with the outside piece now coming out from under the knot and then create a one-sided bow. That gives it “flourish,” she explains. Other than the delicate silk scarves, most are tied underhanded with the end coming out the top to create volume. Scarves are a sign of personal style, and, for the most part, you want to draw attention to them, she says.

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she magazine • september 2011

If you can fold laundry and tie a basic knot, you can wear a scarf. — Tammy Vipperman

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september 2011 • she magazine

Inside, In Style. page 31

SILK SQUARE Lay the scarf flat on a table, taking two oppositeend corners and folding them into the center, giving you two straight edges. Keep folding those outer straight edges into the center until you have, essentially, a scarf sash. Wrap it around your neck, setting up the knot slightly toward one side. Pull the two ends into an X to tie. The key to the flattest, most flattering knot will be to cross the ends so the outside piece is on the bottom, closest to the body, and then pulling that over the top and then down through the knot so it will stay in place and not flap around, Vipperman says. “Most people think this is the most intimidating scarf,” she says. “But you can wear it with a cardigan, denim, a little heel — with a necklace. Let’s bust the myth right now that you can’t wear a scarf and a necklace.”

THE BOHO This scarf is longer, thinner and usually with fringe on the end. Because of its length, it’s really the only shape you can successfully toss oh-so-casually over the shoulders. Start with the end that’s going to hang in front, positioning it about mid-thigh. Wrap the rest of the scarf around the neck, crossing in the front and then to the back, letting the other side hang down. It’ll be hanging down the same side as the piece in the front. Vipperman, though, wants people to experiment on their own and do whatever is comfortable with their scarves — as long as they’re wearing them. “A scarf can be ‘runway,’ a head-to-toe basic, whatever you want. Play with them and have fun.”

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she magazine • september 2011

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september 2011 • she magazine

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cuisine

Earn brownie points with these homemade gems

By Kim Ode | Minneapolis Star Tribune There is no day that isn’t improved by eating a brownie. Maybe it’s because they travel well to picnics. Or because they’re a perfect blank canvas for swirling in a whim of caramel, peanut butter, marshmallows and more. Purists, though, may be happy to know that the basic brownie recipe actually has changed little since Fannie Farmer first came up with the bar cookie in 1906. Basically, it’s a chocolate cake with a greatly reduced amount of flour. Still, two brownie camps have emerged: cakey or fudgy, with the difference being the amount of flour in the recipe. Cookbook author Shirley Corriher, the foodie biochemist and author of “BakeWise” and “CookWise” cookbooks, says there’s yet another division, between those who like a shiny

crust and those who don’t. The delicate, crisp crust results from not only blending beaten eggs into melted chocolate, but vigorously beating them, creating a meringue effect when baked. If you want more of a matte finish — and a less-brittle brownie — don’t beat, just blend, according to Corriher. As far as adapting a recipe to be cakier or fudgier, the simplest fix may be increasing the number of eggs in the recipe, thereby reducing the proportion of flour in the batter. The accompanying recipe offers the best of both worlds, the brownies veering toward a cake texture on the day they’re baked, but settling into fudginess if left overnight, especially if refrigerated. To make them even lighter, increase the number of eggs from four to five. For gooier brownies, use only three eggs.

Recipe

HOMEWOOD BROWNIES ½ cup (1 stick) butter ½ cup shortening, such as Crisco 3 squares (1 ounce each) unsweetened chocolate 1½ cups flour ½ teaspoon baking powder ¼ teaspoon salt 4 eggs 2 cups sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 cup chopped walnuts, if desired

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter, shortening and chocolate in a pan over low heat. Remove from heat and cool slightly. While chocolate is cooling, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, beat together the four eggs. Beating steadily and briskly, ideally with a whisk, add the eggs ¼ cup at a time (or in four steps), beating each time until well combined. With a spoon or spatula, stir in sugar and vanilla, then add dry ingredients, mixing until well combined. Add walnuts, if desired. Scrape batter into ungreased 9-by-13-inch pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Do not overbake. Cool completely on wire rack before slicing.

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MINTY BROWNIES

GINGER BROWNIES Stir 1/3 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger into the batter and bake as directed.

CHERRY BROWNIES

Add 1 cup of dried cherries to the batter before baking. For a more grown-up taste, soak the cherries in a little brandy or kirsch for about an hour before draining and adding to the batter. P a g e 36

Add ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract to the batter, then stir in ¾ cup chopped mint-flavored chocolate pieces. Bake as directed.

PEANUT-BUTTER BROWNIES she magazine • september 2011

TURTLE BROWNIES

In a microwaveable bowl, combine 36 unwrapped caramels and 3 tablespoons of milk or heavy cream. Heat uncovered on high for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Drizzle over batter and sprinkle with chopped pecans, then bake as directed.

ROCKY-ROAD BROWNIES

Drop spoonfuls of marshmallow creme over the batter and swirl with a knife. Scatter some chopped walnuts over the batter and bake as directed. Or, bake brownies as directed, then remove from the oven and sprinkle with chocolate chips, miniature marshmallows and chopped nuts. Return brownies to the oven just until the marshmallows start to melt.

A few more tips for the best brownies ever:

Slightly warm ½ cup peanut butter, smooth or crunchy, then drop spoonfuls over the batter. With the tip of a knife or chopstick, lightly swirl the peanut butter through the batter and bake as directed.

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• Alice Medrich, known for her recipes for all things chocolate, says that refrigerating the brownie batter overnight, in the pan and covered tightly, improves the flavor. She also often opts for bittersweet chocolate instead of the unsweetened chocolate called for in many recipes. • For an even fudgier flavor, substitute brown sugar for white sugar, or go half-and-half. • It’s often difficult to tell when brownies are done, but it’s always better to underbake than overbake them. Amy Scherber of Amy’s Bread in New York City says that once the edges feel slightly firm, even though the center seems soft, the brownies are finished. • Brownies are easier to cut when chilled, or at least cooled completely. • Brownies are best eaten on a warm afternoon while on a blanket spread under a shade tree on a lakeshore. OK, that’s not really a tip, because you already know that.

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Reporting

l i v e f ro m ... Š Chris Stanford

Weather Channel’s

Stephanie Abrams loves the action By Rick Bentley McClatchy Newspapers

LOS ANGELES — The first thing Stephanie Abrams does when she visits a new city is find a place to stay. That’s not so unusual except her lodging of choice is a parking garage, concrete bunker or any other structure that can take the brunt of a hurricane. When others are running from nature’s wrath, Abrams and a film crew from the Weather Channel are heading to the heart of the storm. The Florida native started at the cable channel in 2003 and has become one of its top meteorologists, whether filling in for Al Roker at “Today” or standing in the path of a hurricane to provide live coverage. Field reports always start the same way. “We hit up Walmart and get all our food and water and load up all of our cars, not knowing how long we’re going to be there,” Abrams says. “Then we just go find a sturdy building.” Supplies always include Strawberry Pop-Tarts and Garden Salsa SunChips, or anything that can be eaten cold. In this age of fancy technology, having a reporter stand in the path of a storm doesn’t seem necessary. Footage of buildings flying through the air or trees bent to the ground are sufficient to show nature’s force.

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Abrams on the Outer Banks of North Carolina during Hurricane Earl.

Abrams wants to be on the storm front because she believes it makes her a better meteorologist. For her, being on location isn’t just about understanding the weather better — it gives her a better handle on how those who live in the area deal with the weather. “I can empathize and sympathize and tell them how to prepare better because I’ve lived it,” Abrams says. “I had someone come up to me after Katrina. I think I was in Rita. He came up to me and had his little girl. He’s like, ‘Steph, I have my ax. We’re going to ride this out. In case we have to cut ourselves out of the roof.’ “I can’t tell this person what to do, obviously. But I highly advise against it, and that’s all I can do is say, ‘Listen. We’re forecasting the surge to be this. If your house is here, there’s a potential. I would say evacuate,’ and you just do the best you can like that. You can’t force people to leave. Nobody can.”

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Courtesy of The Weather Channel.

© Stephen Clark Abrams and Al Roker host “Wake Up with Al” on The Weather Channel.

she magazine • september 2011

As for her own evacuation plan, Abrams and her crew make that call. If the weather conditions get to the point where they think it is too dangerous to stay, they can leave.

“We hit up Walmart and get all our food and water and load up all of our cars, not knowing how long we’re going to be there. Then we just go find a sturdy building.”

— Stephanie Abrams

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september 2011 • she magazine

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© Michael Wong

Abrams has such a passion for reporting the weather you’ll probably never see her run from a storm. The self-described science geek has been fascinated with the forces of nature ever since she was 13 and saw the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in 1992. “I saw all the destruction and remember thinking to myself, ‘How did rain and wind do all of that?’” she says. A few years later, at the University of Florida, Abrams still was uncertain what she wanted to do as a career so she took a variety of science classes. It was a meteorology class that proved the most fascinating and that became the basis for her weather-forecasting career, which started with the ABC affiliate in Tallahassee.

Courtesy of The Weather Channel. Reporting on Hurricane Earl in 2010. Page 42

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“I saw all the destruction and remember thinking to myself, ‘How did rain and wind do all of that?’” — Stephanie Abrams

Her work at the Weather Channel keeps her indoors most of the time, but Abrams prefers to get outside to enjoy a beautiful summer day or stare into the building clouds of an approaching storm. At home or in the field, Abrams just can’t get enough weather information. “I remember when the snow was going to come into Atlanta this past year, I got about an hour of

september 2011 • she magazine

sleep. I was up just looking at the radar,” Abrams. “The last big hurricane I covered (before Irene) was Ike, and you couldn’t sleep because it was raging all night. We were stuck in an elevator shaft that was the most secure spot we could find.” At least she had plenty of Pop-Tarts and SunChips.

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shape-up

Be obsessed with being better every day By Ian McGriff When you lie down at the end of a long day knowing you gave everything you could to make yourself 1 percent better, you know it was a great day, filled with achievement toward your objectives. That’s a great feeling. It makes it easier to fall asleep, easier to recover from the long day, and it encourages you to keep working to become better every day. My parents drilled into me that no one should work harder than you because only you can control how hard you work. I’ve taken that notion and flipped it a little. No one can control your success because no one can create it but you. Success, like it or not, is a choice. You always have the opportunity to choose to succeed at a given task each day because success is self-determined and relative to your circumstance. You have to pre-measure success before you can say you were or were not successful. How do you measure success? I’ll give you some advice: Don’t set your bar in comparison to someone else’s. Run your own race. Who cares what others are doing? Only question is, “Am I progressing?” It’s about getting better every day. I have a wristband with the saying “Better Every Day” on it, and I work toward that each day — a better husband, friend, son, leader and man. I work to meet that goal by following what I call the Top Five Obsessions of Successful People, a road map that can lead you to success if you are brave enough to follow it. Inspired by professional leadership speaker Robin Sharma, I added my own twist and came up with the following list. Remember a fear is nothing more than a doubt that you have fed. • Be inspired by change, not resistant to it. Change is life-giving, so we should treat it as such. When we experience a change, we must look at the benefits of the change rather than the negatives. The negatives can consume you. They can force you to dwell only on those things that upset you about that change.

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she magazine • september 2011

Be inspired by the opportunity that the change presents you. If you approach change with excitement and opportunity, you will be able to maximize it into another success, rather than a hurdle to cross. • The bigger the dream, the more important the team. Your team is those people you surround yourself with who build you up, empower you, encourage you, challenge you and make you better. If you have a big dream, you need a great support base. They are essential to your success. Whether it’s a spouse, a friend or a co-worker, you need various people in your life to help you become better every day. • Your energy, not your skill, is your greatest asset. Your energy is what is special and unique about you. Skills can be learned. Now, skill and talent are different. Talent is something you have innately; skill is something that is learned. To unleash your talent you need to focus your energy on the right things, the things that will empower you. Your energy is precious, and you need to protect it. Stay away from “energy vampires,” those people who walk into a room and suck all the fun out. Get rid of them; don’t associate with them. Use your energy to fuel your success. • Leave a trail of successful people around you.

If you aren’t sharing your Top Five Obsessions with others, if you aren’t building up others and becoming part of another’s support system, you aren’t going to be successful. We are made to help one another, to be servant leaders and share our gifts with others. Not only are we doing ourselves a disservice by not sharing our gifts, we are not serving others who need our talents to inspire, grow and lead. Help others to become successful around you and your successes will grow in kind. • Outperform who you were 24 hours ago. If you aren’t in constant pursuit of becoming better than you were 24 hours ago, you won’t be successful. The current of life is constantly changing and moving in a new direction. If we don’t work to outperform who we were 24 hours ago, we’ll move backward. There is no standing still in life; we either move forward or back. If we aren’t becoming better every day, then what are we doing? We procrastinate and play scared in life because we are afraid of being awesome. Every moment carries the possibilities to make a change, to outperform who you were 24 hours ago. Don’t let that moment slip by untouched by your genius. Ian McGriff is the fitness director at Tipton Lakes Athletic Club.

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september 2011 • she magazine

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Celebrating family — with small additions Page 46

she magazine • september 2011

By Andrew Larson This past summer was a celebration of family. Between beach trips to South Carolina and Michigan, along with a visit back to Indiana by our Coloradoan relatives, our kids saw all seven of their cousins for extended stretches of time. On both sides of our family, we took three-generation photos with every member of our immediate families present. The memories we all built together will far outlast the sand that lingers in the car … I think. What I didn’t know would happen this summer was that new family members would be added. But they were. Making the trek home with us, all the way from the Myrtle Beach strip, were Richard and Gumball — our newest family members — two perfect little hermit crabs. They have holed up in our home and family, and they are loved as if they were mammals who shed … but the only shedding they’ll do is of their shell, when that big day comes (and, of course, their exoskeleton). The healthiest doses of doting upon Richard and Gumball come from my wife, Megan. I dare say that she might love them the most of all. Last Friday afternoon when I got home from school, I got the news that Gumball was acting a little bit “sad,” “depressed” or possibly could be dying. I wrote these diagnoses off and headed to the couch for Friday down time. My wife headed to the pet store. She returned a couple of hours later with some new “habitat gear” and a third hermit crab! His (its) name is Soldier. It seems that having a small “cohort” of hermit crabs may have an effect on their activity level (according to the pet store guy), and so far, so good. Gumball’s perking up a bit. You wouldn’t believe the cuisine that these guys get. Each morning they have fresh bits of fruits and vegetables added to their dish, and the old remnants discarded, and every once in

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a while (well, let’s be honest, pretty often) they get a hermit cookie. We tried giving them a bit of canned tuna, since we figured that hermit crabs must eat remnants of dead fish and other animals. Not as well-received as the kiwi and broccoli. Even foragers know fresh from canned, perhaps. These are the luckiest hermit crabs in history to make it out of Myrtle Beach. They went on our vacation to Michigan with us, too. All of those cousins our boys saw this summer — from three different states spread over thousands of miles — all met the hermit crabs. All seven cousins held them, two or maybe more stepped on them, and we have all marveled over their busy little claws and mouthparts and how it feels when they crawl around in your hand. How hard is it to love an arthropod? Surprisingly easy, it turns out. For Gumball, Richard and Soldier may have come from a souvenir store, but they are souvenirs in price only. Good fortune willing, they will live to see the day that they leave their shells (and into the new ones my wife has provided for them when they are ready). When that day comes, you can bet that we’ll be watching, and the entire rest of the family will know about this little milestone for our family. Should they not make it that long, they will leave a little empty space in our family … and in their shells, too. Andrew Larson lives in Columbus with his wife and three boys. He is a teacher at Columbus Signature Academy New Tech High School.

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Landscape logic Fall is a good time for planting most trees and shrubs in the home landscape. If you’ve bought plants in containers or balled and burlapped, you’re less time-bound because the soil stays with the roots. You can plant them any time the soil can be worked. Transplanting of trees can be done in the fall as well. The smaller the tree and

the larger the root system at the time of transplanting, the more successful you will be. There are some tips for preparing to transplant a tree if you have the time to plan ahead. For information on planting trees, call Purdue Extension at 379-1665. — Extension educator Mike Ferree

Recommended reading “Mike Tyson Slept Here,” by Chris Huntington. $14.95 Every May, college graduates across the country ask themselves one very important question: Now what? For Brant Gilmour, the answer is prison. With little thought to a long-term career, and in spite of his parents reservations, Gilmour takes a job teaching GED classes to inmates at the Indiana correctional facility made famous because Mike Tyson was incarcerated there. “Mike Tyson Slept Here” is an eccentric

and funny novel based on the real-life experiences of author Chris Huntington, who spent 10 years working in the American prison system. He is a Columbus native and the son of Marie and Larry Huntington. As Gilmour observes, we are all like Mike Tyson: gruesome inside, but with voices like little birds, and we hurt people for no good reason, except that it’s a living and that it seems some of us, like Tyson, are powerful and lucky and invincible until suddenly we aren’t. — Viewpoint Books

Beauty bits Fall is approaching, and with the season come some exciting trends for our fingers and toes. Here are some of this year’s top nail trends: • Nail tattoos and decals — like the temporary tattoos you loved as a kid, only for your toes.

• Shellac polish — high shine is back. • Rhinestones — bedazzle yourself. • The “moon” manicure — basically the French manicure flipped so the focus is on your moon-shaped cuticles. — about.beauty.com

Healthy habits We’ve all heard that consuming acidic foods contributes to tooth enamel loss, leading to sensitive chompers and making us more prone to cavities and tooth decay. So what can be done if we’re unwilling to give up our morning OJ? • Rinse your mouth with water right after having acidic foods or drinks. • Drink sodas and fruit juices with a straw, which helps acids to bypass the teeth. Page 48

• Try finishing a meal with a glass of milk or piece of cheese to neutralize acids. • Use a soft toothbrush, avoid brushing too aggressively and use a fluoride toothpaste or mouthwash; however wait to brush for at least one hour after teeth have been exposed to acids. — webmd.com

she magazine • september 2011


September 2011 - She Magazine