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Contents august

On the Cover

62

A reason to rally

Patti Rogers’s unique online community site, Rallyhood, was born out of personal necessity—to pull people together with a passion and a purpose. By Jennifer Hill Robenalt

Features

70 Queens of vintage

Three Austin experts share their insight on vintage goods. By Rachel Merriman

Photo by Annie Ray.

77 The Doyennes of Austin’s Alternative Education

Barbara Garza of AESA Prep Academy and Lisa Schmitt of the Girls’ School of Austin offer independent options for unique educational opportunities. By Jeannie Ralston


Contents august

50 on the scene

style

opposite sex

26 spotlight event Sound & Cinema:

46 style In the news.

84 memo from JB Euro Trip.

Flash Gordon.

48 trends Casual chic.

28 5 things not to miss this month 30 philanthropy Big Brothers Big Sisters

gourmet

Austin Ice Ball.

50 dining Austin’s best patios.

32 Horoscopes Happy birthday, Leo.

52 cooking Cookbooks for easy, healthy and affordable meals.

must list

86 Relationships

Ten things guys love

about women.

88 simply irresistible Luke Padwick.

savvy woman 90 you should know Anna Bauereis of

Brain Balance of Austin.

36 gear Back-to-school essentials.

to your health

38 Gadgets Best cameras.

56 fitness Cold therapy.

40 travel Women’s Radical Wellness Retreat.

58 wellness Midlife eating disorders.

action for your child.

60 nutrition Healthy lunch box ideas

96 last word Lessons learned.

on the cover

for your kids.

Photo by Annie Ray, shot on location at the home of Patti Rogers.

14   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

parenting strategies for tweens and teens.

94 all the right questions Allergy

Photo by Elizabeth Shear.

44 adult education Courses for busy women.

92 expert opinion Dr. Laura Kastner shares


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Volume 11, issue 12 CoFounder and Publisher

Melinda Maine Garvey vice president and CoPublisher

Christopher Garvey associate publisher

Cynthia Guajardo CoFounder

Samantha Stevens Editor-in-chief

Deborah Hamilton-Lynne associate editor

Jane Kellogg Art Director

Victoria Millner ad designer

Jennifer Day art assistant

Katie Holmstrom marketing and operations manager

Rhonda Rushing marketing and operations assistant

Lauren Lara Account Executives

Monica Garza, Kelly Keelan, 512.328.2421 Contributors

Rudy Arocha, Courtney Bell, Malia Bradshaw, Jill Case, Andy East, Erin Gray, JB Hager, Ashley Hargrove, Chrissie Jarrell, Tia Marie Kemp, Caroline Khoury, Eric Leech, JoJo Marion, Deborah Mastelotto, Molly McManus, Rachel Merriman, Jennifer Morgan, Katie Paschall, Sarah Quatrano, Annie Ray, Jeannie Ralston, Allison Reyna, Jennifer Hill Robenalt, Elizabeth Shear, Kristi Willis, Natalie Yerkovich Interns

Courtney Bell, Marissa Forsyth, Erin Gray, Caroline Khoury, Jennifer Morgan, Katie Paschall, Maggie Rester, Briana Zimbelman Austin Woman is a free monthly publication of AW Media Inc. and is available at more than 1,150 locations throughout Austin and in Lakeway, Cedar Park, Round Rock and Pflugerville. All rights reserved. For submission requirements, visit awmediainc.com/contribute. No part of the magazine may be reprinted or duplicated without permission. Visit us online at austinwomanmagazine.com. Email us at info@awmediainc.com. 512.328.2421 • 3921 Steck Ave., Suite A111, Austin, TX 78759


From the Editor

the mother of invention” because I believe that when people are confronted with a difficult or seemingly impossible situation or challenge, they use their creativity to find a solution for the problem—and those solutions are often ingenious solutions. Such was the case with Patti Rogers, our intrepid cover woman. Diagnosed with cancer in her early 40s, Rogers was overwhelmed not by her disease but by the outpouring of support and kindness from family and friends. A born entrepreneur, she intuitively recognized the need to organize her supportive community, and from that need the seeds for Rallyhood were planted. Fastforward five years and Rallyhood is rapidly becoming the go-to platform for all types of events, groups and community organizations. I predict her story will not only inspire our readers, but also many of you will be thinking of ways to utilize Rallyhood before you finish reading this issue. Continuing the theme of filling an unfilled niche—single-gender education, Spanish immersion, and flexible, small classes, which allow students to set their own pace—is our story on alternative schools. From the Girls’ School of Austin to AESA Prep Academy to Jardin de Niños Interlingua, three female educators recognized the need for alternative education and founded schools geared to fill those needs. Individual style is celebrated as an Austin

august launch party august 6, 6 to 8 p.m. at fish gallery rsvp aw.ticketbud.com/august-launch

Join us in celebrating the launch of our August issue at Fish Gallery. We’ll be benefiting GenAustin and enjoying the evening with tasty drinks and treats. RSVP, bring their friends and we’ll see you there.

18   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

hallmark, and one of the things that contribute to that unique style is our love for everything vintage. Nothing is more inventive or chic than combining a one-of-a-kind find, be it a brooch, a dress or a midcentury sofa, with your existing wardrobe or décor. We went to the experts for the latest trends and to get tips on how to purchase and use vintage items confidently and with flair. In August it is time to head back to school, so we looked for ways to help readers solve the problems of packing healthy school lunches and creating quick, budget-friendly and healthy family meals for the family on the go. We look at ways to cope with children’s allergies and learning disorders. We’ve got the latest back-toschool gear and gadgets and recommendations for the best cameras designed to capture those unforgettable events and moments throughout the school year. Dedicated to lifelong learning, we also serve up opportunities for adults to expand their horizons through online classes and programs. Our fitness team takes a look at the latest exercises and programs created from the necessity for rehab following an injury. While eating disorders are most often associated with teenage girls, there is an alarming trend for these problems to show up in middle-age women and men. In this issue we look at the dangers associated with midlife eating disorders, the necessity of acknowledging the problems and the ways in which they can affect the

Is there something you want to tell us? Whether you have a great story idea that we should know about or you want to give us some feedback, we’d love to hear from you. Email us at submissions@awmediainc.com to tell us your thoughts.

entire family as well as the latest treatments. Just for fun, JB Hager takes us to Switzerland on a journey reminiscent of the Griswolds’ European vacation, and we also explore a bucket list vacation—a radical wellness retreat complete with surfing in Costa Rica. If you are accustomed to the August heat, we have recommendations for Austin’s best patios where you can dine and enjoy the final evenings of summer. Every issue I find that some necessity requires invention of varying degrees. Finding creative solutions is one of the things that makes my job the most fun. It is my goal that our readers will have something to take away—something to learn from each page and from those inventions. Life is meant to be lived to the fullest, and AW is here to help you do just that. Please share your stories of the ways in which necessity has made you the mother of invention. We look forward to hearing from you.

deborah hamilton-lynne Editor-in-Chief

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Contributors Annie R ay

allison r e yna

JoJo Mar ion

Jennifer hill Robenalt

cover photographer, “A Reason to Rally”

writer, “Let’s Do Lunch”

photographer, “queens of vintage”

cover story writer, “A Reason to Rally”

Annie Ray was born in

Lewisville. She grew up in an Italian-Jewish family and moved to Austin three years ago after graduating from the University of North Texas with a bachelor of fine arts in photography. Annie has always loved capturing people and their stories visually. One of her gifts as a photographer is her ability to capture a moment in someone’s life in the images she produces. Some of her favorite things besides her camera are Christmas, gummy bears, astrology and her 20-pound cats. What was your favorite part of the cover shoot? Patti was

fun to work with and has an amazing personality—she really brought a great energy to the photos.

page 60

As a mother of three young children, nutritionist Allison Reyna has become humbled by the experience of raising her children in a healthy environment while also trying to maintain her sanity. Her own struggle with cancer made her realize the impact of eating a clean, unprocessed diet. As cofounder of Cheer Up Buttercups, a local parent consulting service, she now helps families overcome challenges such as sleep, nutrition and potty training during children’s early years. What were your eating habits like as a kid? I was

a very picky eater, so I always tell my clients there is hope. Did your mom pack a lunch for you? My

lunches were usually packed unless it was pizza day in the cafeteria. I loved pizza.

page 70

JoJo Marion gained his

professional chops at the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara. JoJo has been working in the great city of Austin since 2008 and focuses on mobile, web, print design and photography. He is working hard on carving his own path in the creative world. do you own any vintage pieces? I own an Em-

eco 1006 Navy chair—I use it as my desk chair and found it on Craigslist. The design and history behind these chairs is fascinating, and handmade to last a lifetime can’t be beat! Did you Pick up any tidbits while working on this project? I learned that

with each vintage piece came a story, whether it was history on the piece or how they found it—it was always very personal and meaningful to each lady.

page 62

Jennifer Hill Robenalt is a freelance writer and communications consultant. A native Austinite, she left in the sleepy late ’80s and earned a degree in Writing, Literature and Publishing from Emerson College. When she returned to Austin, she worked with The Texas Book Festival, Texas Performing Arts and Austin’s high-tech community. She also writes fiction for children, young adults and the occasional grown-up. what did you take away from interviewing Rallyhood founder Patti Rogers? It con-

firmed my suspicions that technology really can help build communities and bring about positive change. What causes do you love to rally around?

Women’s rights, education and anything involving a food tree.

have the last word We love hearing your stories. Send in your submissions for our October Last Word column for a chance to be published. To be considered, email 500 words or less to submissions@awmediainc.com by September 1. October’s topic: “My Most Memorable Film”

20   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

Reyna photo by Twin Sisters Photography.

page 62


Connect with us! find us online at austinwomanmagazine.com

for the love of music AW takes a singa-long class with Heartsong, an internationally recognized early childhood music and movement program for children from birth to age 7.

Tweet to Win! We’re giving away a selection of the books featured on page 52, including The Yummy Mummy Kitchen and The Fresh 20. Tweet @austinwoman with #eatwell and your best healthy secret ingredient! The winner will be chosen August 25.

free for all

We dispatched our intrepid interns on a vintage scavenger hunt at the best shops around town, and you will not believe the fabulous finds they unearthed.

Fridayfaves We love exploring the city we call home, and every Friday on our Facebook page, we share five of our favorite things to eat, drink, do or see. This month, we picked our favorite ice cream spots around town. (It’s hot outside!)

1 Lick Unique, gourmet flavor combos. Dark chocolate with olive oil and sea salt, anyone?

Follow us

@austinwoman

22   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

2 Coolhaus Endless combinations of cookies and ice cream for the perfect sandwich.

3 Amy’s Mexican Vanilla or Shiner— that’s the real question.

4

5

Sweet Ritual Old-fashioned ice cream parlor with a vegan twist.

Ice Cream Social Chocolatecovered bacon on my ice cream? Yes, please.

Free from the Austin Public Library Foundation is an art and writing workshop for caregivers and care recipients, beginning August 11th. Written and visual work will be published—we’ve got the details. Can’t get enough of this issue? Check out austinwomanmagazine.com for bonus content, including:

Snap ‘n’ Go. We’ve rounded up the best photo apps to help you ramp up your photos on-the-go.

Time for Dinner. Try more of our familyfriendly, quick and healthy back-to school recipes.

Healthy Eating. Women aren’t the only ones affected by eating disorders. We have important information for the men in your life.

Grabbing dinner before? We picked our favorite patios around town on p. 50.

like us

facebook.com/austinwoman

find us

austinwomanmagazine.com

Uncommon Objects photo by Charlie Kinyon.

Vintage Shopping Treasure Hunt


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We support the Image Gently™ campaign to lower radiation dosage in children.

Two ACR Designated Breast Imaging Centers of Excellence

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reviewed every with continuing monthEach for quality ARA Visit www.ausrad.com to see a video of education. refresh Technologists Maribel discussing ARA quality. assurance. Maribel Escobar technologist’s work is their expertise Quality Assurance Coordinator reviewed every •••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• with continuing month for quality Visit www.ausrad.com to see a video of education. Maribel discussing ARA quality. assurance.

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11 YEARS OF

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on the scene /

sp o t ligh t ev ent

Sound & Cinema: Flash Gordon August 14, 7 p.m., Long Center City Terrace

B See the complete August calendar of events at austinwomanmagazine.com.

26   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

Long Center photo by Giesel Widmer/mycreativedrug.com.

This summer Austin is showing classic movies with a twist. Every Wednesday night until August 28, the Long Center’s city terrace lawn will host Sound & Cinema, featuring some of the greatest movies with local bands playing alongside live for you to enjoy with friends and family outside. Don’t miss ’80s science fiction classic Flash Gordon August 14, with music provided by Queen cover band Magnifico. The lawn officially opens up at 7 p.m., with the show starting at 8 p.m. The event is free to the public of all ages. Visitors are invited to bring folding chairs, blankets, food, coolers (no alcoholic drinks allowed) and pets on leashes. If you don’t want to pack your own picnic, Austin’s favorite food trailers including Frank and Blue Ox BBQ will be on hand. And for 20 lucky moviegoers, Aquasana will be providing VIP seating with free parking, water concierge service, light snacks and a Flash Gordon– themed goody bag (with water guns, what else?). Reserve a prime seat with them on the lawn at RSVP@aquasana.com.—Erin Gray


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on the scene /

5 things

3 2 1 4

5

1

2

3

Austin Pet Expo

Bubblepalooza

Pay it Forward

August 3, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.

August 10, 8 a.m.–4 p.m.

August 8, 6 p.m.

From pet costume and talent contests to giveaways, everyone and their dog is welcome to this free-of-charge petcentric event. Many local rescue groups will also be present at the expo with onsite pet adoptions featuring a wide range of rescued animals needing homes. A variety of booths will be available including live entertainment, obedience demonstrations and grooming centers, making the Austin Pet Expo the best pet-focused event of the summer. Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Road, 512.404.4500, austinpetexpo.com

If there is one way to begin a day in the right fashion, round up the troops, pack some bagels and chase the sun to downtown Austin because The Long Center is hosting Bubblepalooza. Help awaken the city with the sounds of your kiddos’ laughter and the sights of bubbles on the horizon. Spend the entire day drawing with chalk on the city terrace, having fun with friends at Toy Joy and rocking out to the music of some of Austin’s favorite kiddie-rock bands. The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Dr., 512.474.5664, thelongcenter.org

Shake your groove thing for a cause with the inspiring Daniel Curtis. After a nearly fatal driving accident in May 2011, Daniel was injured with severe spinal cord damage. In its first year, the benefit helped with his medical expenses, and now Daniel is paying it forward to help others. Queens of retro, rock and soul, Rotel and the Hot Tomatoes, will perform live, and 20 of Austin’s most celebrated chefs will also be on hand guaranteeing an unforgettable evening of handcrafted cocktails, energetic entertainment and the best food in Austin. 1900 University Ave., payitforwardwithdaniel.com

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Compiled by Katie Paschall

4

5

Under the Sun Tour

Sara Hickman at Cactus Cafe

August 16, 7:30 p.m.

August 10, 8:30 p.m.

As Austin music fans dive into the heat of summer, there isn’t a better way to soak up the golden days than to participate in the first-ever Under the Sun tour. The ultimate throwback to the ’90s, bands such as Sugar Ray, Smash Mouth and Gin Blossoms will join Vertical Horizon and Fastball to time-travel the city of Austin back to the birth of pop culture. As nostalgia for the decade reaches an apex, these bands are bound to put on one heck of a show for their loyal fans. ACL Live, 310 W. Second St., 512.225.7999, acl-live.com

With more than 15 albums, folk-rock singer-songwriter Sara Hickman was named the Official State Musician of Texas in 2010, joining luminaries such as Willie Nelson and Lyle Lovett. She has released more than 15 albums. As Rolling Stone puts it, “Tuneful, clever and carefully observed, Sara Hickman’s material has all the strengths expected of a contemporary Texas songwriter, plus one more— whimsy.” Tickets are $15 in advance or $18 at the door. Cactus Café, 2247 Guadalupe St., 512.475.6515, cactuscafe.org

Rotel photo by Mary Bruton.

[ 5 things not to miss this month ]


phil a nth ropy

Have a Ball Support 1,500 Central Texas kids at the ninth annual Big Brothers Big Sisters Austin Ice Ball. By Courtney Bell When Austin temperatures reach triple digits in August, the coolest place to be is the Austin Ice Ball. Join Big Brothers Big Sisters at the Hilton Downtown August 24 for its ninth annual gala event, the nonprofit mentoring program’s biggest event, benefiting the 1,500 Central Texas kids the organization works with. Corporate Development Manager Kate Garrett has worked with the nonprofit for four years and says she enjoys interacting with local businesses and restaurants to make the Ice Ball a hit year after year. Garrett started her career with for-profit event planning, but in time she desired to make the transition to nonprofit work. Big Brothers Big Sisters was the perfect fit. “I really believe in the mission,” Garrett says. “I enjoy the fun and unique experiences of working with the kids while organizing the programming events in addition to planning fundraisers.” Austin businesses have donated more than 60 items for the silent auction including spa packages, gift cards and jewelry. Garrett and her team also put

together eight to 10 liveauction packages including trips to Bali and New Smyrna Beach, Florida, some with airfare. As in years past, the fast-talking Gale Stalling of Fun Auctions will be on stage as the master of ceremonies and auctioneer to get the party started. Radio Star will be pumping out crowd pleasers from the ’80s all night long, and cool cocktail attire is the order of the evening. Local Austin favorites such as Crú Wine Bar, Maudie’s Tex Mex, Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill, and Stubb’s Bar-B-Q will be serving up their signature dishes to tantalize your taste buds. Garrett has also arranged for an open bar of signature cocktails to be served up or on the rocks, but always ice cold, so as not to break apart from the theme of the night. There will be something for everyone at this don’t-miss summer event. Kennedy Creative is hosting this year’s VIP lounge for table sponsors. The fabulously cool and exclusive Ice Lounge will offer matchless food and cocktail offerings in addition to a special place to hang out away from the crowd. “But of course the great thing about the event— and the reason we’re all there—is to tell the stories of the children of Central Texas,” Garrett says. “We also get to raise money for a great cause.” It costs approximately $1,250 to support a single match for one

year, which includes the work of a professional social worker. These social workers conduct many interviews with “bigs,” or adult volunteers, to work with children (“littles”) and make sure the matches are just what the children need to thrive in their personal and educational lives. Event tickets are available online. If you aren’t able to make the event but would like to support Big Brothers Big Sisters, you can “Fund-A-Friendship” with a fiscal contribution that can help support a match for a week, month or even a full year. The Ice Ball is Saturday, August 24, beginning at 7 p.m., and the fun doesn’t end until midnight. So, ladies and gents: Put on your dancing shoes, and have a ball! Hilton Downtown, 500 E. Fourth St., 512.472.5437, austiniceball.org

Sponsored Events Suzy’s Soldiers Golf & Gala August 9, 7:30 a.m., Grey Rock Golf Club, 7401 Hwy. 45; Barton Creek Resort, 8212 Barton Club Dr. Dust off your golf clubs and start practicing your putting stroke for the fifth annual Suzy’s Soldiers Golf & Gala event supporting the Seton Breast Cancer Center. Hit the greens at Grey Rock Golf Club on Friday, August 9, and enjoy dinner and silent and live auctions afterwards at the Darrell Royal Ballroom at Barton Creek Resort. setonfund.org

30   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

NOCC Run/Walk to Break the Silence on Ovarian Cancer August 25, 8 a.m., 11410 Century Oaks Terrace Presented by Texas Oncology, the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition is hosting its sixth annual event at The Domain to raise awareness and support for ovarian cancer. Register a team online with new incentives this year including a team table or 10x10 tent the day of the race. The 5K begins at 8 a.m. August 25, with the Kids 1K starting at 9:30 a.m. ovarian.org/austin

Healthy Women Day Spa August 10, 9 a.m., 1401 Medical Pkwy. Relax with the folks at Cedar Park Regional Medical Center for a day of pampering and fun. Sign up for a day of free spa treatments, health screenings and door prizes. On Saturday, August 10, sessions run from 9 to 11 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Makeup consultants, dermatologists and fitness instructors are on site to give you all the advice you need to make you feel like a healthy woman. cedarparkregional.com/healthywoman

Photo by Helen Ralowicz/Kennedy Creative.

on the scene /


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on the scene /

horoscopes

Happy birthday, Leo! July 23–Aug. 23 Your month: I have this image of you in my mind, standing alone in your home office, dressed in the robes of a wizard (complete with pointy hat), refusing birthday e-mail invitations right and left while you burn the midnight oil researching chem trails, the lost Jesus years or how to grow your business. If there is a mystery this month, you’ll solve it with a smile on your face and a song in your heart. Lord help the poor soul who demands your full attention while you are deep in research mode, even on your birthday. The harmonious dialogue between the planets of practicality and ➺ hard work and the planets of intuition and imagination continues on another month, and with the added benefit of a mercury that isn’t retrograde. Dream big, plan, organize and implement. You can heal a lot of wounds in August with creative action. Virgo (Aug. 24–Sept. 22): It feels like your personality and Leo’s changed places in August. The way every social event revolves around you, the way you so charmingly blend beauty, love and gentleness with strength and selfassertion, and the way your friends all need to share their thoughts with you—very Leonine. Time and again you find yourself in a group and discover you all believe the same things, so your circle of influence and inspiration grows wider and wider. And everyone wants you. That’s Leo-ish, too.

Scorpio (Oct. 23–Nov. 21): You guys have been so serious lately, but it’s as if every decision has important consequences. Wouldn’t it be great to take a break and have some fun? Maybe plan a trip, go to a few parties and lie around a pool for a few days sipping cucumber margaritas. It sounds appealing, right? Well, you officially have permission to enjoy yourself in August. Put work on hold and relax. Call in a mental health month, or just lighten up your load some. Even you Scorpios can take a break occasionally without catastrophe.

Libra (Sept. 23–Oct. 22): While mankind agonizes over the meaning of life, you’ve found it: at the top of the heap in your work! As your profession expands, your reputation grows. You make it look easy, like you can’t make a wrong call in your career moves. Your intuition is spot-on, balanced with your rational side now. But what the fans of your ambition don’t see is how hard you’ve worked and how strongly you value your partners’ contributions. Your motto: Action speaks louder than words. Be willing to abandon yourself to the unknown.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22–Dec. 21): The meaning of life: Is it sex? Death? Family? The ability to form lasting bonds? August isn’t light-hearted, though some of these heavy topics may benefit from your legendary light treatment. This month you experience an epiphany that makes you value every minute. We buy life, health and car insurance to protect us and our families, but we seldom benefit from it. Expect the unexpected with insurances, wills and taxes, and you finally do benefit big. Joint enterprises and other people’s money are especially lucky.

32   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

capricorn (dec. 22-JAN. 20): Friendships, partnerships, communication, repeat: These are the main themes for August. Partnerships are lucky and fun, and benefit from communication. Communications are enhanced by friends, which in turn benefit from partnerships...you get the picture. All of your relationships are holistic and intertwined, especially those complicated ones with siblings or neighbors. This is probably a good time for a short road trip, especially for healing (mentally or physically), so go ahead and program your GPS. Quick trips are blessed this month. aquarius (Jan. 21-Feb. 19): Your challenge this month is to be powerful in the most positive sense. And you’re smart enough to realize that power can manifest from an organized work and health routine. You love to organize events and people. It makes you feel alive to be busy. You’re attractive, artistic, optimistic, insightful, creative, intuitive and a little larger than life. Though sometimes you feel the world fights what you want the most, just be careful not to respond to it by exploding (metaphorically). pisces (Feb. 20-march 20): This month our lucky planet moved to the most creative part of your horoscope, where it’s really happy for the next year. You suddenly feel overwhelmingly creative, playful and lucky. You must have creativity in your work, and if you cannot find it. Your work ethic outshines everyone, and you can always create a rich fantasy world, but this month and for the next year, your fantasies can become realities. So, be careful what you wish for. aries (march 21–april 20): I am sure if I asked you to recollect a time when you were happier than you are right now, you could not do it. You are stable, not in a boring way, but in a no-need-to-act-crazybecause-everything’s-going-great

way. You’re happy, not in a silly way, but in an I-love-what-I-do-and-whoI’m-with way. And home is great, not in a sit-around-watching-TV way, but in a let’s-remodel-the-laundryroom way. If you work with family (or it feels like family), you won’t have a dull moment this month. taurus (april 21–may 21): You guys usually manage an outgoing month, but this August you would rather celebrate at home with your family. In fact, your home and family is a powerful vehicle, a microcosm for the outside world. Stable partnership? Stable position in your group or organization. Expanded communication with siblings? Growing give-and-take with your brothers-in-arms. There is no escaping friends and family this month; they are all around you. Gemini (may 22–june 20): The most magical thing happens when the planet of hard work and long hours moves into a harmonious dialogue with the planets of good luck and expansion, and impulsive action (respectively). Suddenly, everything in your work world is working. You now have enough time to enjoy your home too. It isn’t an either/or proposition anymore— you can have it all. For the first time in who-knows-when, you can feel confident about your choices. You now know you were right. Cancer (June 21–July 22): A good-luck shift just occurred for you in the universe, and it lasts for a year. You have one year to be creative, implement your ideas and become a star, because this time next year will be your money year. You are planting the trees and spreading the mulch this year to harvest flamboyantly next year. This month a dream, inspiration or moneymaking idea strikes like a bolt of lightning. Follow it. You can’t lose. By Deborah Mastelotto deborah@pinkaustin.com


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Color option 2

Reversed on black background

VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH Black/White— MARIA NAVARRO EHLIS Reversed on black background

White logo if used on solid color background, like on a colored t-shirt

Occupation: Wellness Professional Volunteer since: June 2010

Photo by Jason Youngblood.

Maria is an animal lover, but besides that, you can find her in the gym very early each morning and enjoying cupcakes from local bakeries on the weekends!

How did you get involved with APA?

I saw an APA! ad recruiting volunteers, and being an animal lover, decided to sign-up and volunteer. I originally had plans of helping out with the bottle baby kittens, but that plan changed when I took in two fosters. My fosters ended up having ringworm, and that’s how I became involved with the ringworm kitties.

Do you own any pets?

We have three cats, Pepper, Alistair, and Baby. Pepper was the first cat we adopted when we moved to Texas. A couple of months after adopting Pepper we adopted our second cat Alistair so that Pepper could

have a buddy. We also have a beautiful pup named Can you give us a memorable Tilly. We adopted her when she was 12 weeks old experience from your time and she will be four this year. Tilly would love to play volunteering with APA? with her cat brothers, but they don’t want anything The most memorable experience at APA! has been to do with her. I love my four rescue fur babies and looking at how far we have come with the ringworm can’t imagine life without them! program. It has been a lot of work, but so worth it. So many ringworm cats that would never have had If you could do one thing to make a chance at life have gone to wonderful families things better for animals, what to live out their lives. It makes me so happy to be would it be? part of such a great team! It is such a rewarding I would want every animal to have a wonderful and experience. I’ve also met some amazing people! loving family!

To find out how you can volunteer, visit austinpetsalive.org/get-involved

AustinPetsAlive.org

1156 West Cesar Chavez Austin, TX 78703

adopt@austinpetsalive.org


must list /

what’s for lunch?

gea r

What’s in Your Backpack? Jonathan Adler 17-Month Agenda in Dunbar Road, $20, available at Jonathan Adler, 1011 W. Fifth St., Ste. 130, 512.296.2507, jonathanadler.com

As your kids and teens head back to school, stock their backpack with these fun essentials.

ORE Originals Good Lunch Sack, $18, available at Wanderland, 3419 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.371.9929, wanderlandshops.com; oreoriginals.com

Master Lock 1500eDBX DialSpeed, $16, available at masterlock.com Alba Botanica Good & Clean Exfoliating Towlettes, $6, available at Target, multiple locations, target.com Camelbak Eddy Glass water bottle in Aqua, $25, available at Central Market, multiple locations, centralmarket.com

The Honest Co. Organic Lip Balm, $10 for a pack of three, available at honest.com

Amazon Kindle Fire 7” HD, $199, available at Best Buy, multiple locations, bestbuy.com; amazon.com

36   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

Herschel Supply Co. Post backpack in Camp Orange, $60, available at Nordstrom, 2901 S. Capital of Texas Hwy., 512.691.3500, nordstrom.com

EO Organic Peppermint Hand Sanitizing Spray, $2, available at Central Market, multiple locations, centralmarket.com

BlueAvocado (Re)Zip Lunch reusable storage bags in Kiwi-Solid, $8 for pack of two, available at TreeHouse, 4477 S. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 600, 512.861.0712, treehouseonline.com


must list /

ga dgets

Camera Ready Precision Camera & Video’s Gregg Burger recommends the best cameras for capturing all of your memorable moments, events and adventures. As told to Malia Bradshaw

Best Point and Shoot The Nikon Coolpix L610 ($150). It has a 14X zoom lens yet will still fit in your purse or pocket. It shoots great photos in low light as well as HD video and runs on AA batteries.

Best DSLR The new Canon EOS Rebel SL1 ($750 with 18-55 lens kit) is the smallest digital SLR on the market. Don’t let this small camera fool you. It has the heart of much bigger models. Shoot fastaction sports then turn it into a video camera with the push of a button. The small, lightweight and easy-to-use SLR is a dream to use.

Best Video For a true video camera, the Canon Vixia HF R40 Camcorder ($400) has 53X zoom and optical stabilization for smooth recording. Just point, push a button and save to an SD memory card. Easy video.

Best for the Whole Family For the kids you should take a look at the Nikon Coolpix S31 ($110). This tough camera is waterproof, shockproof and dustproof. The whole family can enjoy this easy-to-use camera and not worry about it getting ruined. Cameras available at 2438 W. Anderson Lane, Ste. B-4, 512.467.7676, precision-camera.com

38   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

tips from a pro For vacation photos a good pointand-shoot camera is best for many people. This type of camera is typically small, compact and easy to use, so you can tuck it in your purse or pocket and always have it available. Waterproof models are also an option. For sports you need two things: a long telephoto lens to reach out there and have the ability to stop the action. You will need a camera that can take many photos quickly. Cameras that can take four to 10 frames per second are great for sports. Use a real camera. Camera phones are convenient but they do not have an optical zoom feature and the flash is not great. Point-and-shoot cameras start around $100 and are compact in size. They have zooms from five times up to 60 times zoom. Now is a great time to get a digital camera. The quality is so much better than just a couple of years ago, and the price is even lower. The SLR style of camera that lets you change lenses is the hot ticket and is affordable to boot. Now almost anyone can take professional-looking photos starting under $500. Every Austinite should have two styles of cameras: a small pointand-shoot to have on them at all times, and an SLR type with interchangeable lenses. They should also invest in a sturdy tripod and stylish gadget bag to protect their investment, protective glass filters for the camera’s lenses, a padded strap for comfort and, of course, memory cards to take the photos.


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t r av e l

your hosts

Pro surfer Ornella Pellizzari riding a wave in Playa Negra, Costa Rica

Real Women Play Hard Combine yin consciousness with yang activity at the Women’s Radical Wellness Retreat in Costa Rica. By Molly McManus Pura vida! Literally translated to “pure life,” this customary saying embodies all that is Costa Rica. It can be expressed in gratitude, in greeting and in farewell; a person can be described as being pura vida; or glasses will

40   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

Kjersti Buaas Buaas is a Norwegian Olympic bronze medalist, with 15 years of experience competing on the snowboard world tour. She is the cofounder of One Life, an organization that strives to demonstrate ecofriendly and playful values, making cultural connections, and exploring the natural world. She is currently working toward her fourth Olympics.

salute “Pura vida!” or, “Cheers to the good life!” Cast your fears, preconceived notions and apprehension aside and experience pura vida during a week to remember for a lifetime. From September 14–21, the Real Surf Trips Women’s Radical Wellness Retreat in Playa Negra, Costa Rica, provides a unique opportunity for the adventure-seeker wanting to connect with the natural world, a different country and culture, others, and, most importantly, themselves. Every aspect of the retreat has a specific purpose and intention. From surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, snorkeling and free diving, to yoga, meditation, healthy eating, educational enrichment programs and discussion forums, this all-inclusive retreat is designed to physically and mentally challenge, in order to have a transformative effect on its participants. Professional snowboarders Kjersti Buaas and Chanelle Sladics will host the retreat. If you don’t know who these two phenomenal athletes are, allow me to sum them up in two words: Bad.

Chanelle Sladics Sladics, an XGames bronze medalist and YogaWorks certified teacher, enjoys surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, free diving and yoga, and is passionate about wellness and environmental sustainability. Also a cofounder of One Life, Sladics loves providing transformative camps and retreats to women across the globe.

Ass. Buaas is an Olympic bronze medalist, Sladics an X-Games bronze medalist. Not only are these women successful on the slopes, they are also deeply passionate about building community with other women, the environment, and personal growth and understanding. “I’m looking for community building,” says Sladics about the Women’s Radical Wellness Retreat. “I’m really grateful for people who choose to let down their guard and be themselves.” She says she hopes the trip will allow women to open up and expose who they are more and more throughout the week. b

Photo by Tony Roberts. Kjersti Buaas photo by Aimee Fuller and Chanelle Sladics photo by Leah Dawson.

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austinwomanmagazine.com 41


must list /

t r av e l

Snorkel the crystal-clear waters of Playa Negra’s hidden coves for a chance to see puffer fish, parrot fish, eels, rays and more.

[continued] “Maybe [the participants] haven’t tried some of the activities before,” offers Buaas, who stresses that whether or not you have prior knowledge in surfing or the other water sports offered, it is important to come in with a playful attitude and an open mind. “The beginner’s mind is always something I’m speaking to,” Buaas explains. “It’s so fun, pure, curious. It’s also nonjudgmental, which is inspiring.” She says her goal is to go in with an open mind as well, soaking up the advice and information participants will share with one another. Both Buaas and Sladics are certified in permaculture design and want to bring their knowledge of sustainable architecture and self-maintained agricultural systems to the retreat so they can share what they’ve learned with their respective homes and communities upon leaving Costa Rica. Permaculture, profoundly tied to nutrition, plays a huge part in Sladics and Buaas’s lives. In line with this, three

Real Surf Trips Bob Witty and Tony Roberts wanted to offer a special surf destination they could share with friends and other surf enthusiasts, and thus Real Surf Trips was born. Living in Costa Rica for 20 years and surfing the world for almost three decades, they settled on the most consistent place for best surf conditions and

meals a day will be provided that are locally sourced, non-GMO and organic whole foods. Cuisine will include local eggs, vegetables, fruit and fish freshly caught from the ocean just minutes away. The retreat combines more extreme, adventurous sports with mellow, reflective body movement, to encourage yang activities inspired by yin energy from within. Guidance along the way will help in understanding how each

great, uncrowded waves: Playa Negra, Costa Rica.

Accommodations & Amenities The Women’s Radical Wellness Retreat takes place at Real Surf Trip’s luxurious Wave House on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica at Playa Negra. The Wave House, located a short walk to the

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water in a warm and beautiful laid-back surf and beach community that boasts beautiful secluded beaches and consistent waves, is an extravagant lodging facility including Wi-Fi, large-screen TVs and a pool. Three meals per day will be provided, along with airport pick up/ drop off and transportation to surfing and diving.

moment has intention and purpose, providing foundation for personal growth, mental clarity and body awareness. “I’m excited to be a guide, with an effort to basically balance the yin and the yang,” says Sladics. “The Western world tends to live in a more yang side of things, constantly moving, accomplishing, succeeding and progressing. Then there’s the Eastern yin side of things, which is very peaceful and about reflection, analyzing and slowing down, breathing…to really help find a more healthy balance.” Buaas points to another important part of the retreat. “I want to have fun and inspire a playful environment. You can learn and you can grow and have fun at the same time. It doesn’t all need to be serious.” Spots are limited, so take the opportunity to escape into pura vida and explore how Costa Rica and the Women’s Radical Wellness Retreat can benefit you. It will be impossible to not take away a newfound sense of self, mental and physical strength, purpose, and knowledge to carry with you as you return to your normal life. realsurftrips.com/womens-radical-wellness-retreat

Top left photo by Tony Roberts. Top right photo by Chanelle Sladics.

Fresh, local food is served three times a day.


must list /

e duc at ion

Live and Learn These quick courses for adults redefine “going back to school” for busy women. By Courtney Bell While it’s true that with age your brain tends to slow and your memory occasionally shorts out, it’s never too late to teach an old dog new tricks. Scientists once believed the brain stopped growing at a certain age, but new studies have shown throughout a person’s lifetime the brain is constantly reshaping itself to accommodate the new knowledge it obtains. The 21st century has reshaped adult education to adapt to your busy lifestyle. With infinite resources on the web such as downloadable audio and visual classes, you can brush up on an old skill or learn something new from the comfort of your home office, or in your car during the commute to and from work. It’s never too late to learn a new language, teach yourself to draw, or learn the ins and outs of finance and business ethics.

Open Culture

The Great Courses

Coursera

TED Talks

Open Culture offers more than 725 courses from top universities that you can download to your computer or iPod. This website is a collection of resources that span subjects such as business, history, foreign language, art and many more. The site is divided into seven main sections: movies, audio books, online courses, e-books, K-12 resources and certificate courses, which makes navigating your way to your next class easy. With the mission of creating open and free access to learning, the website has created a centralized location for high-quality content whenever and wherever you want it. Open Culture also focuses on enriching the cultural side of learning by offering 535 free films, from Western genres to film noir and documentaries. If you’ve ever wanted to learn about ancient Greek mythology, how to read Mandarin, brush up on the basics of digital photography or you just want to enjoy an old classic John Wayne flick, Open Culture might be your new favorite website. openculture.com

The Great Courses offers paid-for courses to extend your learning journey. Often offering specials of up to 70 percent off courses, there’s no reason not to take advantage of these great deals. Their mission is to offer great courses taught by great professors—from the University of Texas at Austin and several Ivy League schools—in the form of audio CDs, DVDs and web downloads. Since 1990 these courses, both fun and educational, have been providing the adventure of learning without the hassle of homework or tests. The site is organized by topics for userfriendly browsing. With more than 450 classes (spanning more than 10,000 hours) on managing stress, the fundamentals of wine, culinary history and modern economic issues, as well as new courses continually being created by the top one percent of educators in the nation, there is something for everyone at The Great Courses. thegreatcourses.com

Have you ever wanted to attend an Ivy League school? Coursera, an online education company, offers 406 free courses from 83 prestigious partners such as Princeton, Brown and Columbia, just to name a few. When you take one of their classes, you watch lectures taught by world-class professors, learn at your own pace, test your knowledge and reinforce concepts through interactive exercises. Coursea offers a wide variety of course subjects ranging from traditional classes in foreign language, mathematics and the sciences to more unconventional classes such as the History of Rock, Jazz Improvisation, the Global Business of Sports and Climate Change. If you are looking for a new job or are simply retraining with your current one, Coursera classes such as Stanford courses in building databases or computer programming might just help you land your next job or promotion. Also check out classes from edX, a similar consortium offering classes from Harvard, MIT, Berkeley and the UT system. coursera.org

If you’re too busy to fit a multilecture course into your schedule, TED Talks might strike your interest. These televised lectures found online, through your local cable provider and on Netflix cover more than 1,500 curious topics and can replace your usual television program. TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas worth spreading. They believe in the power of changing the world through knowledge and inspired thinking. This clearinghouse of more than 1,400 videos is constantly growing to offer free performances and talks from the greatest minds of our time to stimulate dialogue and promote an open attitude to new topics. TED covers topics on a global level in attempts to create a community of people from all disciplines and cultures. By developing a better understanding of the world through talking, TED Talks is a great way to continue learning new things throughout your adult life. ted.com

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Walk-ins welcome!

• • •

Bringing South Austin style up North! Sip a mimosa as you indulge on everything from a Brazilian blowout to a precision cut at our certified salon.

Call for appointment (512) 258-4244

7318 McNeil Drive, Suite 110 Austin, TX 78729

pinupsalonaustin.com


style /

in the news

beauty buzz

Jamie Pope The founder of Liz James Designs on her style icon and how to achieve effortless style. What’s the story behind Liz James?

Who’s your style icon?

I started making jewelry 20 years ago while visiting my mother in Santa Fe. She and I found several pieces of jewelry that I liked but thought could be better. My mother told me I should just make my own. I went to college to become a dental hygienist, but one day I was cleaning a friend’s teeth, and he asked me if I was going to clean teeth the rest of my life or follow my dreams. Shortly after that conversation, I retired from hygiene and started Liz James.

My grandmother—she taught me to be true to myself and not follow trends.

Do you have a fall collection in the works? Yes I do. Frequently I hear the question, “Can I wear my silver and gold together?” So I created a mixed-metal collection for fall that I am very excited about.

How can women accessorize with Give us three words jewelry? I always tell women to make that describe your it easy—find pieces that can be style. dressed up or down. I love the Versatile, effortless, classic.

fact that I have designs you can

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wear from the carpool line to the red carpet. I love pieces that are classics that I can wear with a T-shirt and jeans.

How does it feel to see stars such as Carrie Underwood and Emmy Rossum wearing your designs? It is an honor that they bring attention to Liz James. However, it is just as exciting to be in another city or state and see someone wearing Liz James.

Favorite piece? It is hard for me to choose. Currently my Carol earrings are my favorite— I can’t seem to take them off! Liz James jewelry can be found at Adelante (1206 W. 38th St., 512.452.5322, adelanteaustin.com) and Bay Hill Design (3663 Bee Caves Road, Suite 4C, 512.374.0210, bayhilldesign.com).

hair raiser It’s safe to say Austin’s own Allen Ruiz is having a good hair month. The co-owner of Jackson Ruiz Salon snagged the North American Hairdresser Awards’ top honor, Hairstylist of the Year, at the Professional Beauty Association’s annual award show in Las Vegas July 14. Known for his voluminous creations and artistic approach, Ruiz previously won the same award in 2007, making him the first Latin-American stylist to be honored twice in the award show’s 24-year history. The Austin native credits his hometown as the stalwart for his creative edge. “I live in a city where the slogan is ‘Keep Austin Weird,’” he says. “I have a very diverse clientele who are willing to let me try new things in the salon, and for that I feel fortunate.” Ruiz represents Aveda as its North American styling director, and if he’s not working at his salon on Lamar Boulevard, Ruiz is likely behind-the-scenes at a photoshoot or primping tresses for the fashion runway. So if you’re lucky enough to book an appointment in Ruiz’s salon chair, don’t be afraid to let your hair down—clearly whatever mane magic he’s doing is working.—Jane Kellogg


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style /

tr ends

Easy Breezy D&Y hat, $25, available at Blue Elephant, 4001 N. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 510, 512.371.3259

Dress casually for the dog days of summer. Photos by Rudy Arocha

AJ Morgan sunglasses, $15, available at Adelante, 1206 W. 38th St., 512.452.5322, adelanteaustin.com

Roxy beach bag, $48, available at Blue Elephant, 4001 N. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 510, 512.371.3259

Bamboo sandals, $25, available at Atown, 5502 Burnet Road, 512.323.2533, shopatown.tumblr.com

Karen by Karen Kane dress, $118, available at Adelante, 1206 W. 38th St., 512.452.5322, adelanteaustin.com

dress it up Heading straight from the pool to a nice restaurant? Pack a few key accessories in your tote for a simple wardrobe upgrade.

48   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

Gold cuff, $15, available at Langford Market, 249 W. Second St., 512.482.8500, langfordmarket.com

Elizabeth and James wedges, $275, available at Co-Star, 1708 S. Congress Ave., 512.912.7970, costarstyle.com

Aztec earrings, $39, available at Y&I, 1113 S. Congress Ave., 512.462.0775, shopyandi.com


Straighten Out Two must-have products for a healthy, sleek ’do. Photos by Rudy Arocha With humidity in full force, a quality straightener can be your summer lifesaver. We like the quick-heating Rowenta Straight Express One-Inch Flat Iron ($180, available at Ulta, various locations, ulta.com), which hit beauty store shelves earlier this summer. It features built-in teeth to pre-comb your hair before it straightens it. Ever get your arms tangled with a comb in one hand, straightener in the other and the cord caught up somewhere in the middle? This is the solution. You might even have a spare hand to hold a cup of joe. The heat control is also handy, allowing you to lock in your preferred temperature from 260–450 degrees.

No Other School Teaches Them To

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Fried, frizzy ends not quite the look you were going for? When using the Rowenta iron or any other thermal styling tool, always be sure to douse your hair with some protection first. Aveda’s Brilliant Damage Control ($17, available at Avant Salon, various locations, avantsalon.com) keeps your head safe from the combing and heated styling you’re about to put it through. It contains chamomile to soothe hair and scalp and wheat proteins to keep your tresses from being overworked and stretched.

Specializing in Quality of Life & Healthcare for women

Elementary/Middle Schools Elementary Schools (PK-8) in your area: SchoolSchool of Saint Mary St. Cathedral Austin Catholic Holy Family Catholic School Cathedral School of Saint Mary St. Austin Catholic School St. Gabriel’s Catholic School Gabriel’s Catholic School St. St. Helen Catholic School, Georgetown St.Family Helen Catholic Catholic School, Holy School Georgetown IgnatiusMartyr MartyrCatholic CatholicSchool School St. St. Ignatius, Louis Catholic SchoolAustin St. St. Louis Catholic School, Theresa’s Catholic School St. St. Theresa’s Catholic School Santa Cruz Catholic School, Buda Santa Cruz Catholic School, Buda

High Schools in your area: SanHigh JuanSchools Diego Catholic High School St. Dominic Savio Catholic High School St. Dominic Savio Catholic High School St. Michael’s Catholic Academy St. Michael’s Catholic Academy San Juan Diego Catholic High School

Learn about Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Austin

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We are located in the Westlake Medical Center 5656 Bee Cave Road, Suite B-101 Austin, TX 78746 (512) 301-6767

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gourmet /

din ing

Patio Perfect Outdoor dining to match every occasion and mood. By Kristi Willis Dining outdoors is as much a part of the Austin lifestyle as live music, and the choice of alfresco venues is as diverse as this fine city itself. Whether you are looking for a relaxed evening with the family or a more grown-up evening sipping wine with friends under the stars, there is a restaurant patio to match your mood.

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Grove Wine Bar & Kitchen Just past the bustling intersection at Bee Cave Road and Loop 360, the Grove Wine Bar and Kitchen is an oasis where you can sip wine with your friends or flirt with a date over the latest vintage while sitting under a sprawling oak. You can try adventurous wine flights such as the “Pinot 911!” or “Sign of the Argentimes,” or choose from a lengthy list of wines for sale by the bottle or glass. And while the focus is on wine, there is plenty for a beer-lover to enjoy, including several local brews. The menu offers wine-friendly fare and is particularly easy to navigate for people with special diets, displaying a legend for gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian and vegan options. Dine on a selection of bruschetta or a specialty pizza, or share one of the seafood small plates like the Grove crispy oysters with a tangy mango-poblano pico sauce, a fresh ceviche made with Texas redfish and Gulf shrimp, or a blue crab cake with a spicy remoulade.

Don’t despair if you need to bring the kids along for date night. The Grove is surprisingly easy with children, providing a menu with a number of offerings that will make them happy while you have a nice dinner. A neighborhood joint with some style and panache, the Grove is a great choice the next time you need to relax and be pampered a bit. 6317 Bee Caves Road, 512.327.8822, grovewinebar.com

Jack Allen’s Kitchen The expansive covered patio at Jack Allen’s Kitchen in Oak Hill practically begs you to skip work, school or other commitments and relax with friends and family. The Texas-style menu and extensive drink list features almost a dozen inventive margarita recipes and a bevy of local brews, which makes it easy to sink back into the chair and let your worries go. Chef Jack Gilmore has been delighting Austin diners

Josephine photo by Elizabeth Shear; Contigo photo by Knox Photographics.

Josephine House


for decades and has upped his game at his namesake restaurant, where he works with farmers around the region to put Texas on the plate. Whether you start off with the down-home pimento cheese on flatbread crackers or the juicy bacon-wrapped quail served with jalapeno and peach jams on a green fig salad, each tasty bite signals that you are in for a true Texas experience. Chef Gilmore’s signature dishes involve green chile, whether it’s the pork tacos, a chunky queso or the cheeseburger, and he also has a deft hand grilling fish in the light-grilled ruby trout and outstanding fish tacos served with a spicy pico de gallo. If you really want to splurge, the five-cheese macaroni with achiote chicken is a decadent indulgence. It’s recommended to make reservations for weekend evenings, but it’s an easy dining solution for larger groups. Jack Allen’s also features a long happy hour with halfpriced appetizers and drink specials from 3 to 7 p.m. on weekdays and from 3 to 5 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. When you want to kick back and relax in true Texas form, the patio at Jack Allen’s Kitchen is the place to be. 7720 Hwy. 71 West, 512.852.8558, jackallenskitchen.com

Josephine House Josephine House, previously used only as the special event space for the celebrated Jeffrey’s in the Clarksville neighborhood, has found a following of its own serving lunch, afternoon snacks and drinks. The charming converted house has an even more enchanting covered patio that invites you to indulge in a leisurely lunch. If the patio is full, you can host an impromptu garden party at one of the tables on the lovely front lawn. The lunch menu changes regularly and includes three sections: cold dishes from the marble counter, hot dishes from the kitchen and a tempting array of daily sweets. On the lighter side, a marinated beet and grapefruit salad is the perfect balance of sweet and tart, while the earthy quinoa and carrot salad finishes with just the right brightness from the mint. The tender hand-cut noodles served with seasonal vegetables is a don’t-miss treat, as is the fried Gulf oyster sandwich with its crunchy-carrot and radish slaw, an interesting twist on the traditional po’boy. At 3 o’clock, the menu shifts to afternoon snacks featuring charcuterie and cheese boards as well as a selection of sweets and dishes from the marble counter. Happy hour kicks off at 5 p.m., and guests are welcome to stay late unless the space is booked for a private event, in which case service ends at 6 p.m. Josephine House has a classic white-apron style without feeling stuffy and is a welcome respite in a dizzyingly busy world. Reserve a spot on the patio and slow down for a bit. 1601 Waterston Ave., 512.477.5584, josephineofaustin.com

Phil’s Icehouse There is no way around it: Some days call for the chaos of a playground. Phil’s Icehouse provides a venue where the kids can run wild and wear themselves out on the playscape while the adults still get to feast on quality food and drinks. The menu features burgers that play off the character of local neighborhoods, such as the spicy 78704 with Monterey Jack cheese, jalapeños, avocado and chipotle mayo on a jalapeño cheese bun, or the all-American Allandale cheeseburger on a sourdough bun. All the burgers are served with a mix of traditional and sweet potato fries and the meat can easily be substituted out for a veggie patty or chicken breast. If burgers aren’t your style, the crispy fish sandwich and Frito pie are tasty alternatives. Wash down your food with a shake, one of the local beers on tap or a glass of wine from Becker Vineyards. The kids’ menu, for children 12 and younger, has a fairly standard selection of burgers, hot dogs and chicken tenders as well as a veggie burger option, and comes with fries and a drink for the bargain price of $3.99. With locations north and south, Phil’s is the perfect answer for a family outing that everyone in the crew can appreciate. 5620 Burnet Road, 512.524.1212; 2901 S. Lamar Blvd., 512.707.8704, philsicehouse.com

Shady Grove

crusted queso catfish are other Shady Grove classics on the menu. If you can find the room, finish off dinner with a bowl of cobbler or slice of pie while you soak up the Austin ambience—easy, casual and a little quirky, just like Shady Grove. 1624 Barton Springs Road, 512.474.9991, theshadygrove.com

Contigo Austin Modeled after the family ranch in south Texas, Contigo Austin has an expansive patio edging up to an open barn of a building, with limited seats for those who prefer to dine inside. The atmosphere at this retreat, in the shadow of the old airport at Mueller, is slow and effortless—inviting guests to linger with their friends or take up a game of washers while enjoying specialty cocktails and refined bar food. The drink menu includes refreshing beverages such as the El Pepino—a tequila, cucumber, lime and mint concoction—as well as stronger drinks such as the bourbonbased Old Fashioned, in addition to a wine and beer list that beckons to be explored. While you sip your drink, you can nibble on snacks such as crispy green beans—a refreshing change to the standard fries—pigs in a blanket that will redefine how you feel about this humble snack, or one of their house-made patés or terrines. The small plates are easy to share, or you can dive into one of chef Andrew Wiseheart’s entrées which change daily—the juicy burger on a soft challah bun, the satisfying rabbit with sage dumplings, or a perfectly roasted chicken and vegetables. Brunch offers up traditional dishes like eggs Benedict or more adventurous fare like the spicy pozole soup or the rich and tender beef-tongue hash topped with an egg. Regardless of when you visit, Contigo welcomes you to be part of the family and gives you plenty of reason to stay for awhile. 2027 Anchor Lane, 512.614.2260, contigotexas.com

Possibly the most iconic patio in Austin can be found at Shady Grove. For more than two decades, the casual eatery has invited Austinites and visitors to relax under the shade of their pecan trees and laze away the afternoon. Shady Grove is the perfect stop after an afternoon at Zilker Park, and you can unwind on the lawn with live music on Thursday nights thanks to its popular Unplugged at the Grove series. The patio is so popular that it’s not uncommon to find people who have never been inside the venue’s ranchContigo Austin style stone dining room. The menu is equal parts backyard barbecue and Texas diner with satisfying burgers and sandwiches and a handful of dishes featuring Hatch green chiles that are guaranteed to spice up your day. The hand-cut French fries smothered in green chile sauce and cheese are perfect for sharing as an appetizer while you cool down with a treat from the bar, such as a frozen margarita, sangria or Shady Thang, the house specialty drink made with pisco brandy, vodka, triple sec and lime juice. The Hippie Chick sandwich (piled high with grilled vegetables and chicken), the spicy green chile cheeseburger and the crunchy tortilla-

austinwomanmagazine.com 51


gourmet /

cook ing

The Family Dinner by Laurie David

For those families that struggle to maintain a communal dining experience, David’s approach to a family dinner is a must-read. The Family Dinner (Grand Central Life & Style, $30) offers conversation starters and fun games to play at the table along with healthy recipes kids will enjoy.

The Family Table

Freeze & Easy by Sara Lewis

Eight new cookbooks with easy, healthy and affordable everyday recipes for the whole family.

Offering an opportunity to save both time and money, Freeze & Easy (Pavilion, $25) includes 100 recipes that can be made in bulk and frozen for an extended period of time. Instead of cooking a new meal every night, Lewis has created a cookbook that offers delicious and easy recipes from a leg of lamb to citrus cupcakes, all of which can be frozen once prepared and enjoyed later without the loss of fresh flavor.

It’s All Good

By Caroline Khoury, Photo by Rudy Arocha

by Gwyneth Paltrow and Julia Turshen It’s All Good (Grand Central Life & Style, $32) includes recipes from chicken burgers to delicious smoothies. The busy actress and mother of Moses and Apple had a specific goal in mind: to create healthy, energizing recipes that will leave you feeling full and satisfied. These recipes will keep you and your family healthy and feeling great.

Fresh Happy Tasty

What’s For Dinner?

The Fresh 20

Recipes from My Home Kitchen

by Curtis Stone

by Melissa Lanz

by Christine Ha

If your family appreciates tasty, flavorful foods, Fresh Happy Tasty (William Morrow, $35) should be your go-to cookbook. Coxwell, Diane von Furstenburg’s personal chef, has had the privilege of traveling aboard Furstenburg’s yacht and visiting countries all over the world. Discovering new ingredients during her travels, Coxwell has combined world flavors into quick recipes everyone can enjoy at home.

For all of you busy families out there, celebrity chef Curtis Stone is ready to help with What’s For Dinner? (Ballantine Books, $35). Stone shares up to 25 simple recipes for each day of the week. In categorizing weekdays (Time-Saving Tuesdays and Five-Ingredient Fridays, for example) each day has a specific focus. Bonus: Prep and cook times are included.

Cooking according to the season, Lanz has compiled a list of easy, natural recipes in her new cookbook, The Fresh 20 (William Morrow, $25). Ever wish someone would just tell you exactly what to buy? Each week’s shopping list contains 20 ingredients designed to make your weeknight meals easier and healthier for the modern family’s lifestyle.

Master Chef winner Christine Ha impressed the nation with her immense cooking talents—a skill she mastered as a blind person. Now she’s sharing her Asian comfort-food meals in Recipes from My Home (Rodale, $24). If any of you doubt your ability to successfully create a quick, delicious meal, it’s time to try your hand in the kitchen again: Christine’s mission is to prove that anything is possible. b

by Jane Coxwell

52   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3


gourmet /

cook ing

Paloma Margarita

[continued]

The Yummy Mummy Kitchen by Marina Delio

In The Yummy Mummy Kitchen (Harper One, $28), Marina Delio has compiled a list of mostly meatless, produce-rich recipes and has included her own life tips as well as those from her grandmother—the original Yummy Mummy—on how to raise a family and stay chic at the same time. Emphasizing the importance of including your children in the cooking process, simplicity in your recipes and maintaining a sense of style, Delio’s Yummy Mummy cookbook is a guide on how to create delicious, wholesome recipes for a busy family while staying stress-free and glamorous. A delicious example of that mantra is Delio’s Summer Squash Rainbow Pizza. “Pizza night doesn’t have to mean a greasy unhealthy dinner,” she writes. “We have pizza night every couple of weeks, and the kids love decorating the pizza with toppings before I pop it into the oven. This rainbow pizza makes it especially fun for the kids to eat their veggies.”

Summer Squash Rainbow Pizza Serves: four to six

Ingredients: 1 (16-ounce) prepared pizza dough 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 large clove garlic, minced ¼ cup shredded Italian cheese, such as mozzarella, Asiago, Parmesan, Fontina or a blend 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese 1 zucchini, thinly sliced 1 yellow squash, thinly sliced ½ red onion, halved and thinly sliced 1 or 2 fresh Roma tomatoes, sliced Coarse sea salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste ½ cup fresh basil leaves Directions:

Preheat the oven with a pizza stone to 550˚F for one hour. Alternately, the pizza can be baked on a piece of parchment paper placed directly on the rack or on a cookie sheet. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil and garlic. Roll out the pizza dough on a lightly floured piece of parchment paper until it’s 54   Austin Woman a u g u s t 2 0 1 3

about ¼ inch thick. Brush the pizza dough with garlic olive oil. Sprinkle with the cheeses. Place the vegetables on pizza starting one inch from the outer edge and working inward in circles. Lightly brush veggies with garlic oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Transfer the pizza (with parchment, if using) to the pizza stone, oven rack or cookie sheet. Bake for eight to 10 minutes, until the crust has browned and the cheese has melted. Garnish with basil.


Recipe and image excerpted from The Yummy Mummy Kitchen by Marina Delio. Š2013 by Marina Delio. Used with permission of HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers.

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to your health /

fitness

Skip the Ice Bath

Just place it in the freezer for two hours and you’re ready to recover. $100, available at tptherapy.com

New technology provides the benefits of cold therapy to aid in recovery plans for athletes. By Chrissie Jarrell and Natalie Yerkovich With high temps and hard efforts, recovery is an important part of your fitness routine. Luckily some of the most effective ways to recover will also bring a welcome cooling effect. Cold therapy has long been used by runners and endurance athletes with the notorious ice bath. Now there are many high-tech ways to get the benefits of cold therapy without the misery of sitting in an ice-filled tub. Why is cold therapy helpful for recovery? After a hard workout, your body works to repair itself by bringing oxygen to your muscles and removing lactic acid buildup. Cold therapy can speed up the removal process, reducing inflammation and soreness. By chilling your muscles, you cause your blood vessels to constrict, flushing the lactic acid from your muscles. Then the body sends fresh, oxygenated blood to the chilled muscles to warm the body back up. Here are a few high-tech (and one very low-tech) ways to add cold therapy to your recovery plan: Cold Roller by Trigger Point Most people are familiar with foam rolling, which mechanically breaks up fascia and muscle knots like a massage. Combining the power of myofascial release with cold compression is the Cold Roller, which chills the muscle like an ice bath while performing myofascial release. You’re able to provide targeted cooling to specific areas without the discomfort of chilling the entire lower half of your body. The roller itself is made of a stainless steel body filled with gel.

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CryoStudio Cryotherapy Chamber Whole-body cryotherapy involves stepping into a chamber that is chilled to -238 to -274 degrees Fahrenheit for up to three minutes. Since just the dry air is chilled and not water like in an ice bath, cryotherapy is much more comfortable than you might imagine. Even so, the cold temperature activates blood flow, adrenaline and endorphins, which decreases inflammation, improves immune response, relieves pain and more. Treatment sessions are quick and leave you feeling cool for the rest of the day. CryoStudio, 6806 Bee Caves Road, Ste. 1A, 512.900.3838, austincryo.com Cool Vest by HyperWear The Cool Vest is a fitted vest Barton filled with frozen packets Springs that serve to cool your core Pool temperature before, during and after workouts. Research shows that up to 75 percent of your energy can be used to regulate body temperature during exercise, while the remaining 25 percent is going to the muscles. The higher your core temperature rises during a workout, the shorter the duration and intensity of your workout, so it makes sense to begin with as low a core temperature as possible in order to work out longer and harder. The Cool Vest provides the benefit of precooling your core so that your body can conserve the energy it would have taken to equalize your body temperature once you warm up. Hyper Vest Cool Gel, $140, and Hyper Vest Cool PCM, $200; available at hyperwear.com Barton Springs Pool Austin’s favorite swimming hole is also a great place to recover from a long, hot workout. The fresh-flowing water stays at 68 degrees year-

round, which is cool enough to chill the muscles and encourage blood flow to flush lactic acid as your body heats back up. As an added bonus, it is beautiful and peaceful, making for a great place to cool off post-workout. 2201 Barton Springs Road, 512.476.9044, austintexas.gov

Chrissie Jarrell and Natalie Yerkovich, the gals who created  myfitlist.com, do the grunt work for you. Well, the organizational grunt work, anyway. They work hard to connect people with the fitness groups, information and resources they need so they can grunt, sweat and tone to achieve their personal goals.


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to your health /

wellness

Eating Disorders at Any Age

Midlife Dangers In many ways, the psychological and health impacts of eating disorders are the same no matter what the person’s age, but there are some important differences. For example, people in midlife are much more likely to have their disorder complicated by alcohol and drug abuse, simply because they have easier, legal access to alcohol and prescription medications. AW: Why are midlife eating disorders different than when they occur at other stages in life? Why are they so dangerous? CB: It is mostly the type of collateral damage. When an adolescent gets an eating disorder, it affects the parents and siblings, and often school work. When an adult gets an eating disorder, it affects the partner, the children, the aging parents if the patient had been in a caretaking role, work, finances and on and on. The ripple effect goes down to the younger generation and up to the older generation, and marriages and partnerships really suffer. Many partners will say things like, “There are three people in this relationship: you, me and the eating disorder.” And many feel as though the eating disorder often wins.

Understanding the issues for adults. By Jill Case When we hear “eating disorder,” most of us automatically think of a teenage girl with anorexia nervosa or bulimia. Cynthia M. Bulik, Ph. D., has set out to dispel this myth and to help people (as well as physicians and clinicians) understand the differences and challenges that midlife eating disorders present in her book, Midlife Eating Disorders: Your Journey to Recovery. Environmental Stressors Dr. Bulik says that while many stressors might trigger a predisposition toward an eating disorder, there seem to be certain stressors that are unique to adult women. These stressors “may trigger an eating disorder for the first time, or retrigger a dormant eating disorder in a new way,” Bulik says. Austin Woman: What environmental stressors trigger midlife eating disorders? Cynthia Bulik: For anorexia, we are seeing a few common pathways into the disorder in midlife. One is after a stressor such as a breakup or a divorce, going on a “divorce diet” or some other extreme weight control approach in preparation for “being back on the market.” Same thing with exercise. It might start out as healthy then cross the line into an obsession—to the point when one continues to exercise even when injured, keeps setting higher and higher goals (or lower and lower when it comes to weight or body fat), and it basically becomes the most important thing in your life. Another one we have seen is women who have lost weight due to illness and then that becomes the launchpad for further weight loss and an eating disorder. One we have been seeing is eating disorders post bariatric surgery. Some of these women may have had eating disorders before the surgery and not told their physicians for fear they would be denied the treatment, but others are developing eating disorders after the surgery, and it can have deadly consequences. Finally, a common stressor can be menopause. We know puberty is a risk factor and menopause is like

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hormonal bookends in a woman’s life, so it makes sense that the weight, shape and appetite changes that occur in menopause could also be triggers. Having a newly empty nest or financial stressors can also be triggers. “A Culture of Discontent” Dr. Bulik contends that the “Bigs” (Big Diet, Big Cosmetics and Big Fashion) or “mega-multi-billiondollar companies and industries,” are the cause of our discontented culture. She argues that marketing strategies target us in a personal way, focusing on our looks and who we are as people. AW: I am particularly interested in the “Bigs” and the “culture of discontent.” Could you talk about these two things? CB: A day doesn’t go past when an advertiser doesn’t try to make you feel badly about some aspect of who you are or what you look like. It is a brilliant scam. They plant mind worms in your head to make you discontent with something you might never have even thought about before…then, after that discontent is firmly planted, they offer to sell you a product to fix it. The biggest market now is the unrealistic pressures not to age and ridiculous sayings such as “50 is the new 40” or “40 is the new 30.” It isn’t! Your body is still 50, or 40, or 30. These pressures themselves do not cause eating disorders, but they lead women—and men frankly—to engage in behaviors that increase their risk of developing an eating disorder, such as extreme exercise or radical dieting.

Seeking Treatment There are many options out there for people seeking treatment. In her book, Dr. Bulik states, “The type and level of care you may be seeking will vary considerably based on what type of eating disorder you have, how severe your disorder is and the availability of treatment in your area.” AW: What are your tips for women looking for compassionate and competent care? CB: Do your homework in finding a practitioner who has experience in eating disorders. Ask around, use the internet and make use of the various advocacy organizations such as the National Eating Disorders Association, the Eating Disorders Coalition and the Academy for Eating Disorders. The first step is to get a thorough evaluation so that a professional can gauge what kind of treatment you may need—that could range anywhere from a self-help book to inpatient treatment and everything in between. Important advice is not to delay, as these disorders can and do have serious effects on your mental and physical health—especially in middle age when our bodies are less resilient to the damage that eating disorders can do to just about every bodily system. The author of Midlife Eating Disorders, Cynthia M. Bulik, Ph.D., is the Distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, as well as the director of the UNC Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders. For more information, visit cynthiabulik.com.


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to your health /

Let’s Do Lunch Healthy lunch box ideas for kids of all ages and taste buds. By Allison Reyna

n u t r ition

As the summer begins to wind down, earlier wake-up times and school lunch packing becomes the norm once again. It is easy to get stuck in a rut when it comes to packing your child’s lunch, and it is even easier to send your child with convenient, processed foods that don’t always promote health. But food is fuel for your child, so it is important to pack the healthiest foods possible. Not only do we want our children to behave well when they are out of our sight, but we also want them to be at their peak performance. There is no denying that what they put in their body effects both behavior and performance.

“My daughter’s first-grade teacher noticed kids were replacing lunch with cafeteria line ‘snacks,’” says Austin health coach Amy McAbeer. “They limited snack permissions to Fridays, and immediately the kids’ after-lunch attention span dramatically improved, enriching the learning environment.” However, it is easy to understand the challenges families face and why so many of us turn to these convenient foods. Here are some suggestions for healthy, easy-to-prepare foods for this year’s school lunch box. No matter the age, use these fresh ideas for inspiration this school year.

Fresh Ideas

Pre-School

Try to think outside the sandwich box as much as possible. With a little imagination you can pack items that keep easily and are more nutrient-dense. Roasted vegetables such as sweet potato or broccoli are sometimes more palatable than raw vegetables. Little ones love to dip! Try a dip such as humus, black bean dip or mustard. If you have a pasta-lover, multi-grain pasta can be jazzed up with your child’s favorite steamed or puréed veggies. Also, whole-grain salads made out of quinoa or barley are great bases to add ingredients your child can pick, such as diced veggies, nuts, beans, roast chicken, turkey or tempeh, with a drizzle of olive oil and red wine or ume plum vinegar. Try to include one vegetable or fruit with each lunch.

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Elementary

Try to keep their lunches as clean and unprocessed as possible, keeping sugars to a minimum. Look for little ways to promote health such as thinly sliced fruit instead of jelly. A nutrient-dense choice such as an almond butter and banana sandwich on whole wheat bread will give your child long-lasting energy. Or skip the bread and make roll-ups with an organic, nitrate-free turkey or ham; guacamole or hummus; or avocado slices. Spring rolls with a zesty dipping sauce make for a fun, easy meal to prepare with your child (we all know having your child pitch in makes them more likely to eat!). Simply roll shredded chicken, rice, noodles, and grated carrots or zucchini in rice paper and voilà—tasty and healthy.

Middle and High School

When your kids grow to the age that they are old enough to pack their own lunches, it’s important to stock up on healthy choices. Improve the typical sandwich and look for bread without high fructose corn syrup and at least three grams of fiber per slice. Even better, use Ezekiel bread or a whole-grain tortilla. Add double avocado, tomato slices or roast chicken instead of deli meat, which is loaded with nitrates and dyes. It is easy for older kids to fall into a diet full of sugar and chemicals, especially if they are eating at school. Limit sodas and sugary, caffeinated beverages, and suggest replacing them with coconut water, flavored sparkling water and sport drink alternatives at health food stores that are made without high fructose corn syrup and food coloring.


moms need a healthy lunch too

Label Lessons: Unjunk Your Kid’s Lunch Box The new e-book from Naturally Savvy’s Andrea Donsky helps parents think outside the (lunch) box. By Jennifer Morgan Take control of your kid’s bad eating habits this school year with Andrea Donsky’s new e-book, Label Lessons: Unjunk Your Kid’s Lunch Box. As the founder of naturallysavvy.com and author of Unjunk Your Junk Food: Healthy Alternatives to Conventional Snacks, Donsky’s new guide provides resources to identify and eliminate bad foods from their midday meal. Bonus: The book includes coupons, so you can shop smart to eat smart. Share Label Lessons with your friends online and naturallysaavy.com will donate a dollar (up to $10,000) to Healthy Child Healthy World, a program that for 20 years has influenced policy that protects the health of our world’s youth while empowering parents with credible healthy advice. To download Label Lessons for free, visit naturallysavvy.com/labellessons.

Austin health coach Amy McAbeer, owner of Package to Peel, shares her tips for how moms can be healthy throughout the day. Heading back to work this fall? Moms sometimes need a healthy reminder too! Whether you have a demanding office job or you’re shuttling kids to and from school and activities, here are some tips for packing a healthy lunch:

Make it the night before. Don’t lose your lunch to a hectic morning. Pack your lunch as you clean up after dinner or while prepping lunch for the kids. Think green. Include tons of leafy greens in your sandwich, salad or smoothie. The nutrients in greens boost your energy, while the fiber fills you up. Stock up on whole foods that travel well. Think fruits, pre-sliced

veggies, avocado, organic cheese, nuts and seeds, hard boiled eggs, plain Greek yogurt, or individual servings of nut butter. Having these nutrient-dense foods on hand prevents a midday vending machine sugar run. Bring water. Yes, we have all heard this suggestion (over and over) but it rings true. Not a fan? Add lemon and keep it cold in a thermos. Hydration is the most important thing you can do for yourself. packagetopeel.com

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Rally A reason to

Patti Rogers’s unique online community site, Rallyhood, was born out of personal necessity—to pull people together with a passion and a purpose.

By jennifer hill robenalt Photos by annie ray

63


E

Every superhero has an origin story. On October 31, 2008, Patti Rogers was Batgirl, the powerfully autonomous defender of justice known as one of the most brilliant heroes of the DC Comics pantheon of characters. Fearless and known for her particularly stellar computer skills, Batgirl seemed an obvious choice for Rogers. Her husband Michael, a tech entrepreneur in the software space, was going to be Batman. And as Austin’s unofficial mascots and protectors, bat culture would be well-represented by the power couple known to have contributed handily to Austin’s burgeoning entrepreneurial landscape. But as Rogers took an exit off Mopac to pick up her kids, Ethan and Zoe, for the massive Halloween party at their home that night, she couldn’t have imagined that her own origin story would change forever. Before arriving at the school, Rogers got a phone call from her doctor. It was cancer. They would need to do a battery of tests and create a treatment plan. Immediately. “I was actually sure they had the wrong person and spelled my name to be sure they had the right name. I just kept the information in a pocket. I didn’t tell my husband until I kicked the last neighbor out of the house and unplugged the margarita machine. He was, by that time, sleeping on the couch and I woke him up and said to him ‘I have something to tell you.’ I will never forget how he met me in this place of positivity and faith and he just looked me dead in the eyes and said, ‘We got this.’”

THE GATHERING On her 46th birthday, in her modern, elegant and well-appointed house in an established gated

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community in Barton Creek, Rogers described the evolution of a life derailed and rerouted. Her home was calm and filled with light pouring over ethereal and naturalistic abstracts against clean lines of furniture. Bright and fit with sunny blonde hair, Rogers has created an oasis which relays a design-forward aesthetic of someone who deeply enjoys simplicity, nature, wide-open spaces and experiences above affectation. Patti Rogers was born in Chicago but moved to Texas when she was 4 years old. Her mother and father, both successful entrepreneurs, instilled a powerful work ethic into each of their four daughters. By example, Rogers learned that conceiving, planning and executing an idea was not only possible but also a birthright. Goals could be made and met, and futures could be envisioned and achieved. But for Rogers, the cancer diagnosis suddenly presented a dark unknown that would not only challenge her physically, but present a deeper set of questions about life, love, community and purpose. In college, Rogers earned a swimming scholarship to the University of Hawaii. She later finished her English degree at the University of Texas at Austin. After graduation, she headed to parts unknown—two years in Washington, D.C., and another two in Los Angeles—where she honed her marketing, branding and design skills. But reconnecting with her Anderson High School sweetheart brought her back to Austin, and here she stayed. In 1992, she started her first business. “I had a company called The Olsen Group—a marketing and advertising company,” she tells me. “We focused on doing print and corporate branding collateral for mostly high-tech companies during that time. And then we moved into interactive. I sold that business in 2002 and really took the opportunity to dive into the world of volunteering and helping my kids’ school.” And, like many mothers who transition back home after working long hours, the monumental


Patti and Michael Rogers, with children Ethan and Zoe

austinwomanmagazine.com 65


[clockwise from top left] “We absolutely love Halloween at our house; it’s one of our favorite holidays. This picture was taken about two hours after I received my diagnosis call. I had yet to tell anyone (even my husband) about the news.” “My friends refer to this as my “choose joy” pose. I was breathing in the beauty of the moment, during our end-of-chemo celebration trip in Hawaii.” “My daughter took this picture of me about five months into my treatment.”

task of organizing a household, a family, personal goals and community commitments proved to be just as demanding on her time and energy, if not more. “That was really an eye-opening time for me because I realized for the first time that volunteers actually make the world go round. There is so much work outside of ‘work’ that happens. I could see really clearly…this absence of tools to organize activities within non-enterprise projects. And every busy parent knows what I’m talking about. The 37 emails surround the Valentine’s Day party. The inefficiency of communicating dates for a committee or a board. There was a lack of tools.” Rogers was inspired by people within her community at her children’s school, St. Gabriel’s

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Catholic School, including Dr. Judith Knotts and Jeff Serra. There were also Tessa Lewis, Aileen Avilles, Lynn Sargent and Lynn Meredith, among many others. “They were real leaders and selfless givers in that community,” Rogers says. “I’ve been so inspired by that and taking that forward in my heart. I witnessed how hard these people work. They weren’t doing it for a name on the wall or to get credit. They were doing it because they believed in the impact that their work would have on a small community and then ultimately a broader community. I just observed that hard, hard work and selfless giving of their professional skills.” After the cancer diagnosis, Rogers’s view of the power of community deepened. A conversation

with her sister made it clear that now was the time to ask for help. And it wasn’t easy. “While cancer is all the things that it is—it’s inconvenient, and it’s scary and it’s totally unglamorous—it really truly was such a blessing in the deepest sense of the word in my life for so many reasons,” Rogers recalls. “It wasn’t cancer that changed my life; it was kindness. And it was community that changed my life. No matter who you are—how brilliant, strong or successful— real-life community connections matter. We all need help, and asking for it is difficult. But the gift of letting love in is one of the most profound gifts you can ever give to yourself and the people around you.” When Rogers was sick, her community brought the love. Neighbors, friends, church members


and even people she barely knew came forward to help make things a little easier for her and her family. “You want to conserve your energy for getting well,” Rogers explains. “The last thing you want to do is make something or wash something, or even just having to think about going to the grocery store was sort of a daunting task because you just don’t feel good. I had some friends who went to Mass every Friday and said the rosary for me. I have other friends who missed vacations and workouts. That changes you because you feel forever blessed by that kindness. And I truly feel it is my honor to take that kindness forward and spread it all around. And it is at the heart of the inspiration for Rallyhood.” During her treatment, Rogers made the decision to clear the clutter and focus on the present. No more galas. No more committees. No more obligatory dinners. The cancer, it seemed, forced a tide change in how she viewed the world and

what to do with the life she had. Rallyhood was taking root, and now she had the time to consider its full potential. “Because of the white space in my life, because I had cleared my life, I had the benefit of being able to hear the inspiration, and I know that’s a gift too,” Rogers says. “I know that if I had been obligated or overly committed by other activities, I might have just missed the inspiration or thought of all the reasons why not. But instead I could see clearly the vision of building a platform for communities.”

TIME TO RALLY About two months after Rogers’s last surgery in early 2010, the culmination of her instincts and experiences finally came together. Rogers considered the challenges of running an organized life after the sale of her company. She contemplated the powerful impact of volunteer

contributions at her children’s school and in her professional network. She sat in deep gratitude for the outpouring of love and support that she and her family received during her treatment. The common thread was the limitless need for human beings to connect, organize and help one another. But the challenge was to develop a comprehensive platform to empower people to work more efficiently and easily in order for the human touch to emerge organically. “I heard clearly the words ‘Rallyhood’—‘rally’ being about pulling people together with purpose, and ‘hood’ being the community piece,” Rogers explains. “We waste so much time when things are disorganized. That time is precious and everyday counts. When things are disorganized it creates stress in our life. It creates unnecessary chaos in our life. And those two things—chaos and stress—equal disease. If we could help organize group communication inside communities and how we work and play in groups…the trickle down

Planning Practically: How You Can Use Rallyhood to prep for a baby Remember back in the day when your friend would have a baby and a dozen people would bring casseroles, a couple of pies and a practical, less personal but no less beloved, gift of a pack of Pampers? After four days, Mom and Dad are out of food, diapers, sleep, sanity and probably some selfrespect. You want to help, so maybe you’ll send out an e-mail and try to organize a food tree. But you’re not quite sure if everyone got the message, and you’re even less sure that people will remember when to bring the pasta. Rallyhood is designed to help bring people together around a person, group, cause or organization. According to Rally-

hood CEO Patti Rogers, turning chaos into calm during those first months can be easier than everyone thinks. “My hope is that by clearing out communication clutter, we make way for emotional white space that allows us to witness the inspiration that’s all around us—people, experiences, ideas, laughter. Tiny human moments… love,” Rogers explains. Here are a few practical applications Rallyhood offers. Create a food tree. Users can sign up, list what they’ll bring to Mom and Dad, and when it will arrive. Users can also see what everyone else is bringing and where there are gaps. And Mom and Dad can make a list of preferences includ-

ing dietary restrictions, favorite restaurants and what nights they don’t need help. You’ll even get a reminder so the new parents don’t go hungry. Manage a wish list. New moms, dads and babies need more baby wipes. Right. Now. Mom and Dad can make requests and people in their rally can see where the deficiencies are, and what they still need. Make a visitation schedule. Yes, new parents love company who comes over to coo over baby. But do you know what they love more? Sleep and uninterrupted eating. Parents want and need help desperately. But they almost never ask for it. Rallyhood offers dynamic calendar features

so parents or an organizer can ask for help and visits from friends and family easily—and without worrying about being a burden. Share the love. People in the Rally Site can sign up before the birth, and when the time comes, the couple can send out a group message like, “Water broke! Headed to the hospital!” Users can be

notified immediately when baby arrives. Parents can post pictures right from their phone too, making it easy to spread the word (and adorableness) of the newborn right from the hospital. Later, anyone in the Rally Site can safely post pictures, good wishes and even blog posts to share the progress and joys of life with a new baby.

austinwomanmagazine.com 67


would have a positive impact on life.” Rogers realized that women, like her, are always seeking resources and tools to help them be better friends, moms, neighbors and community leaders. In doing research, it became clear that silo solutions like Evite, Sign Up Genius and PayPal could only provide pieces to the bigger, more complicated puzzle of helping someone in need, organizing a group or changing the flow of communications and organization in a company or nonprofit. In Rogers’s view, the marketplace desperately needed aggregated tools in one place. “We don’t live a siloed life,” Rogers explains. “We don’t live a life with our kids’ activities, a life with our nonprofit causes, a life with work, a life with our personal fitness groups. We have one life, and we have one calendar. We need help with that.” Soon after Rogers conceived the idea of Rallyhood, and with consulting support from her husband, the company announced a $1.3 million round of funding with financing led by Tom Meredith, cofounder and managing partner of Meritage Capital and former SVP and CFO at Dell. The capital was used to get new customers and develop products. She hired a small staff and got to work. Rogers was determined to solve the problem of having to log in to multiple accounts across many different social tools and networks in order to share information and coordinate efforts in real-world scenarios. She wanted users to be able to share photos, files, event information, make payments and communicate with one another all around a specific person, cause, event, committee or organization. For individuals, every aspect of life including home, community involvement, personal time and work should be integrated into one application. Users could receive a personalized calendar notice every day filled with reminders, information and opportunities to engage without leaving the application featuring integrated tools such as maps and pay services. She conceived a free site offering a “freemium” model, where users can get an account for free but upgrade to more powerful features within the platform. Rallyhood is currently the only social app that incorporates all the group communication, coordination and sharing tools in one place. In 2012, Rallyhood’s beta testing generated 7,500 active users across 2,000 Rally-Sites. Now officially out of beta, the company’s mission is to gain more users and continue to build relationships with major organizations across the country, while also

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Komen Austin’s Fab 15: Rallying for the Cure Every year Komen Austin names one or two local breast cancer survivors as honorary chairs for the annual Susan G. Komen Austin Race for the Cure. But to honor their 15th year serving the greater Austin area, they wanted to take things up a notch. The official announcement of the fifteen Honorary Chairs—the Fab 15—will take place at a press conference the first week of September. In the following weeks, the Fab 15 will be featured in the Komen Austin blog, website and eventually at the beginning of the Komen Austin Race for the Cure on Sunday, November 10. The Fab 15 is a group of 15 local breast cancer survivors and co-survivors who will share their stories to help Komen Austin and its community partners save lives in the five counties they serve: Bastrop, Williamson, Caldwell, Hays and Travis. Komen Austin also supports national research in the fight against breast cancer. According to Komen Austin Executive Director Christy Casey-Moore, Patti Rogers was a natural choice as one of the 15 honored breast cancer survivors chosen to be honorary chairs this year. “Patti Rogers used her personal experience with breast cancer to help others affected by this disease by creating Rallyhood,” Casey-Moore says. “The online tool makes it easy for the friends, family and peers of breast cancer survivors (aka co-survivors) to be there and support their loved ones through their journey. Rallyhood is now a multi-functioning tool that is used by not only co-survivors and patients of a wide range of diagnoses, but also widely used as a form of communication for business.” Komen Austin uses Rallyhood to help volunteer committees work more efficiently and effectively with one another. Everyone from their board of directors to the volunteer race committee utilizes Rallyhood for scheduling, communication with one another and document sharing. For Rogers, her cancer experience filled her with purpose and hope. “I don’t believe I got cancer for a reason. I believe that cancer gave me a reason to love and live differently.”

providing a simple, yet powerful tool for small groups and individuals. “We’re really excited about a couple of really important partnerships that we have—Livestrong patient support and we have just begun a partnership with Dell Children’s to create patient and family support sites for their community,” Rogers says. “And we have a strong and growing relationship with Girl Scouts around the country, both on the troop level and on the council level.” And for everyday users, Rallyhood can be used for anything involving a variety of people, activities, purchases, events, destinations and goals. It’s popular among soccer teams, triathlete communities and schools. Even friends and families who are looking for ways to help new parents can organize a safe online space for photos, food trees, visits, gifts, email communications and even a blog around the arrival of a baby. It takes rallying to a whole new level.

A NEW BAT SIGNAL In Native American mythology, bats are powerful and complex creatures. The bat totem can

represent an impetus [opposite page] Flowers courtesy of The Flower for transformation. And Studio, 1406 W. Sixth the presence of a bat Street, 512.236.0916 can signal profound cobyneal.com change is afoot. Bats are nocturnal creatures which thrive in communities and awaken in the dark. Some say they are messengers that provide a chance to face one’s darkest fears, and to consider the possibility of a new life—a rebirth. According to lore, bats beg those who come across them not to be afraid, and to face the darkness with a sense of hope, togetherness and opportunity. Almost five years after that scary Halloween in 2008 as Batgirl, and three years after her final surgery, Rogers has survived cancer. In the process, she found that communities can illuminate the darkness, strengthen communities and create the connections that can transform lives. “I tell my kids all the time: It’s not about what happens to you. It’s about what you do with it. Choose up or choose down. Which one is it? I was determined that this was not going to bury me. It was going to plant me, and then from here I would grow.”


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Vintage Queens of

Three Austin experts share their insights on vintage home goods, jewelry and clothing. By Rachel Merriman

photos by jojo marion


Alchemy Design moon phase tunic, $54; 1950s Aztec print playsuit, $98

Mania Mania quartz necklace, $408

“Pay no attention to the size on the tag! Try things on; if you like it, just check it out. Because it is an older garment, keep in mind that the fit could be different.”

Justifying the price tag: “The No. 1 reason for buying vintage is having something that no one else is going to have. Also, the quality—if you were to find this level of quality in a new garment, it would cost significantly more. Things just aren’t made quite the way they used to be, with construction and care [and] really nice silks and cottons.”

Emily

c

Owner, Feathers Boutique, 1700. B S. Congress Ave., 512.912.9779, feathersboutiquevintage.com

A costume design major from the University of Texas, Emily Hoover worked in the New York fashion industry before opening Feathers Boutique in October 2005. Since then, Feathers has quickly transcended local favorite status, claiming a spot on Elle’s list of best vintage shops in America and features in Lucky, Teen Vogue and Texas Monthly. Though you can’t throw a rock without hitting a place to buy vintage clothing in Austin, Hoover’s wealth of experience and keen eye makes Feathers a local gem.

the better (body) part of a decade Vintage styles that work well for each body type. Pear-shaped: Long, flowing skirts from the ’70s paired with a fitted top lend comfort and style. Hourglass: The silhouettes of ’50s

1970s Indian cotton maxi dress, $198

clothing flatter any body type, but look especially great on curvy women. Rectangular: Flaunt your inner Twiggy with a ’60s mod miniskirt or dress, or perhaps a ’20s flapper getup. Plus-size: Try on anything from the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, especially A-line dresses made with a lighter fabric.

Trending: Cowboy boots paired with a sweet sundress is a quintessentially Austin look. Global textiles featuring bold prints from different cultures carry a story with them. Mixing old and new, such as pairing modern designer shoes with vintage clothing, creates an eclectic layered look.

Jeffrey Campbell Minx booties, $330

Where to find vintage: “Estate sales more so than garage sales, flea markets and swap meets.” austinwomanmagazine.com 71


Vintage-Inspired Child’s Room A three-drawer chest or credenza can be used as a changing table that can easily be painted to match the decor of the room. A 1950s-era low bookshelf is great for letting little ones access toys and books themselves. Place it next to a rocking chair for easy access during story time. Vintage Fisher Price toys are fun to play with and make great decorative items. 1970s-era macramé hanging shelves are handy next to the changing table or when you want to keep items out of reach.  Mexican or Indian blankets used as wall décor make a room cozy and add a graphic element. Vintage metal file cabinets provide sturdy storage for toys or clothes.

Peacock feather wall hanging, $40

Mixing vintage with modern: “Make sure there aren’t too many woods and metals. If you have one metal fixture and a couple of colors going on, you can easily tie in modern and vintage items.”

Chrome and glass bar cart, $89

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Laura Thomas

1977 Fisher Price pocket radio, $9; West German metal top, $17

Dealer, Room

Service Vintage, 107 E. North Loop Blvd., roomservicevintage.com Owner, DIG Vintage Clothing, digvintageclothing.com

On most weekends during her childhood, Laura Thomas got up at five in the morning to hunt for vintage items at rummage sales with her mother, but it wasn’t until she was 25 that her longtime hobby became a career. After earning her degree in art history, she began working for a travel company and selling vintage clothing on eBay as a side project. She soon returned to Texas, where her skillfullypicked pile of items at an estate sale caught Room Service Vintage owner LuCretia Sisk’s eye. Thomas has been a dealer at the popular shop ever since, traveling all over Texas and even cross-country to bring unique, high-quality pieces to Austin.

Sofas and chairs: “If it has a broken leg that’s been repaired, definitely take a look to see if it’s been repaired correctly; if not, it could definitely cause problems. Make sure it’s structurally sound, and never pass on anything you really love because it has stains or bad upholstery, because you can always have it reupholstered.”

Mod vinyl rocker, $139

Personal style: Homespun, nostalgic, Americana


Shopping Recommendations Dolly Python: A Dallas-sized 3,800-square-foot vintage emporium, with clothing and boots sections that will blow your mind. 1914-1916 N. Haskell Ave., Dallas, 214.887.3434, dollypythonvintage.com Uptown Modern: Beautiful, quality vintage furniture. Many pieces are reupholstered in new fabric consistent with the decade of the piece. 5111 Burnet Road, 512.452.1200, uptownmodernaustin.com Blue Velvet: Laura’s go-to place for vintage clothing at a great price, right down the street from Room Service. 217 W. North Loop Blvd., 512.452.2583, bluevelvetaustin.com Next to New: A consignment shop with a large inventory and scheduled mark-downs on items, so if it’s too much at the present price, you can count on it being marked down in a couple weeks. 5435 Burnet Road, 512.459.1288, next2new.org Etsy: SweetShopVintage (etsy.com/ shop/sweetshopvintage) and RogueRetro (etsy.com/shop/ rogueretro) offer great selections of vintage baby and kids’ clothing, toys, and decorative items.

What’s Trending ’60s-style furniture remains a big seller for its quality and classic clean lines. Bar carts enjoy popularity for their utilitarian and decorative qualities. Use it to show off your collection of vintage decanters and barware. Swag lamps are a perfect lighting solution— simply plug them in and hang wherever you need extra light.

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Shopping Recommendations Citywide Garage Sale: Held at the Palmer Events Center each month, you’ll find a vast amount of vintage and antique items available from an ever-changing list of vendors. Aug. 17-18, 900 Barton Springs Road, 512.441.2828, cwgs.com Ruby Lane: One of the largest online antique malls, with a diverse inventory of jewelry, art and popular collectibles. rubylane.com Austin Antique Mall: 30,000 square feet of space with more than 100 dealers, open seven days a week for all your vintage needs. 8822 McCann Dr., 512.459.5900, austinantiquemall.com The Lush Life Antiques: A wide selection of costume jewelry, including some beautiful Mexican silver and Native American pieces. thelushlifeantiques.com TIAS: The largest online antique and collectibles mall on the web, with more than half a million items for sale. Have a collection to complete? This is the place for you. tias.com

What’s Trending Eighties and ’90s jewelry, especially pieces with gold and pearls. Fifties and ’60s-era rhinestone jewelry remains popular for collectors and buyers alike. Collectible brands such as Miriam Haskill, Coro, Trifari and Chanel.

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Assessing value: “Look at each piece individually, even if it has a name on it, and determine whether it’s a high- or lowend piece by looking at the components, construction and style.”

1950s faux turquoise cabochon and rhinestone necklace attributed to Hattie Carnegie, $295

Chanel 2.55 handbag brooch, circa 1994, $395; 1940s Joseff of Hollywood jeweled elephant brooch, $365

Buying jewelry: “First, buy what you like, especially if you’re a novice and don’t have knowledge of what’s most collectable and what might be of value. Second, buy the best you can afford. Typically, the better jewelry is, the better it will hold its value.”

1960s Miriam Haskell amber crystal bead bracelet, $295

Pamela Wiggins

Owner, Chic Antiques, rubylane.com/shop/ chicantiques

If there ever was a queen of costume jewelry, Pamela Wiggins would wear the sparkling crown. Her 25 years of experience collecting, selling and appraising costume jewelry has led her to pen several articles and books on the subject; her next book, Warman’s Costume Jewelry, is slated for release in 2014. Wiggins is also the cofounder of Costume Jewelry Collectors International, a valuable resource for costume jewelry collectors, and the antiques expert guide for About.com.

“When costume jewelry was first introduced a century or more ago, it was to imitate fine jewelry—using pieces of base metal and paste stones to imitate the crown jewels. When Coco Chanel came around in the 1920s, it became more of a fashion statement. Styles changed drastically during the war because they couldn’t get the components to make the jewelry; fewer rhinestones and sterling silver were used because all the base metal was going toward the war effort. There are all kinds of historical associations with the jewelry that go beyond what we see when we look at it aesthetically. There are stories behind almost every piece.”

Personal style: Bold, colorful, unique Assessing condition: “Unless you can have someone replace them, I would stay away from pieces with missing stones. Worn plating is almost impossible to get refinished. Look for anything that would be not original, [such as] replacement stones that look like they don’t really fit in with the setting and clasps that don’t look like they’re original to the piece.”

1930s pastel rhinestone and filigree oval brooch, $95

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The Doyennes of Austin’s Alternative

educattion Barbara Garza of AESA Prep Academy and Lisa Schmitt of the Girls’ School of Austin offer independent options for unique educational opportunities. By Jeannie Ralston

photos by rudy arocHa

77


Austin is known for its “alternatives.” Alternative music. Alternative films. Alternative lifestyles. Among the most exciting alternatives here are in education. Outside the mainstream offerings are a plethora of options that cater to various learning styles, creative interests, academic talents and parental priorities, and all with their own spin on how to build an independent, inquisitive and productive adult. Two of the most interesting alt-ed choices are led by dynamic women with a combined total of more than 50 years in education. Lisa Schmitt, with Girls’ School of Austin, and Barbara Garza at AESA Prep Academy, each have long credentials at established public and private institutions and now are putting their knowledge (and hearts) into schools that reflect their passions, values and spirits.

AESA PREP ACADEMY The valedictorian of AESA Prep Academy’s Class of 2013 has seen it all. “I’ve been to every type of school—public, private, homeschool, charter,” Caleb Barlow said in his valedictorian address in May to an audience of roughly 130 parents, siblings and friends. “In no other school have I felt more accepted and more supported. The small classes mean we’ve really been able to bond with one another and get what we need from our teachers.” He’s not kidding when he says small. Caleb stood at the podium in the central hall of AESA with the four other members of his graduating class behind him. In total AESA (which stands, loosely, for Academic

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Excellence for Scholars, Athletes and Artists) includes 50 students, grades four through 12. But unlike some new schools—AESA was founded in 2009—AESA isn’t small because it’s just starting to build attendance. At AESA, small size is the school’s hallmark. Smallness allows it do to big things. “We want to stay small to remain light on our feet so that we can keep up with the rapidly changing world Barbara Garza of education,” says Head of School Barbara Garza, who founded AESA Prep Academy and won’t let it grow beyond 100 students. “In the next seven years, education is expected to change more than it has in the previous 40 years. We want to be ready for what’s coming.” AESA Prep Academy, accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the NCAA, is located in southwest Austin, close to Dripping Springs—it sits on 25 rolling acres, which it shares with the Polo Tennis and Fitness Club. The school building was once the tennis clubhouse, and though it’s been modified several times to add classrooms, it still retains a homey feeling. In between classes or on independent study time, students lounge on sofas or study in an aquarium room or gather at a chessboard in the corner. Garza’s office is behind glass doors looking out on the central hall. “I can see everything that goes on,” she says. “There’s no way someone is going to fall through the cracks here.” Garza left her position as a dean at esteemed St. Stephens School in Austin to start AESA. Her twin

sons were attending St. Stephens at the time and were burning out from up to four hours of homework every night plus a tennis training regimen. She figured there had to be a way for kids to get a quality education and have more balance in their lives. She then set about creating it. “A lot of private prep schools create a ‘sink or swim’ environment, putting tremendous pressure on kids,” says Garza. “We feel really strongly that kids do best when they have time with family and time for other interests beyond books.” Because of the four-to-one student-teacher ratio, teachers can cover more in class, meaning less is assigned as homework. Teachers are better able to work around changing schedules, allowing kids to miss school for travel, sports tournaments, fine art activities or internships. “Traditional public and private schools can’t be this accommodating. Kids are stuck at school from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. with only so many allowed missed days a year. A lot of people sour on that.” The flexible environment also allows students to advance to their own levels. “For example, we have an


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eighth grader taking geometry because he’s ready for it,” she says, “however in English he’s at grade level. That’s not a problem for us. Making sure all students are challenged and progressing is what we do.” But just as important to Garza is the school’s nimbleness as a whole, allowing it to take advantage of innovative developments, such as replacing the devalued AP courses with more rigorous dualcredit classes. Many high schools offer students dual-credit classes with a community college, but AESA is one of only a few that have a partnership with the University of Texas, offering a variety of classes—from microeconomics to American literature and Spanish. “College admission officers like to see that students can actually handle college course workload and demands,” she says. “Community colleges are great, but we think that UT credits on students’ transcripts mean more and are much more likely to be accepted.” Another way Garza is responding agilely to the changing world of education is by developing an eschool. Starting this year, AESA will begin offering courses online, targeted initially to students outside the Austin area who need high-quality classes but also want the flexibility to pursue other interests. The online courses will be a combination of videos of AESA teachers explaining certain lessons and live classes via Skype. “Most online courses are terrible—canned presentations and questions,” she says. “We’ll be online with an accredited curriculum that meets national standards and we know works and with a host of ways for teachers and students to communicate.” Garza says she’s launching the online school for the same reasons she originally started AESA. “In my mind schools should be set up to meet the needs of families—to take care of kids in all kinds of situations. That’s what we’re committed to doing.” Barbara Garza, AESA Prep Academy founder, has a bachelor’s in education from UT. Her experience as an educator and administrator includes teaching honors biology, supervising a variety of community service and student leadership projects at McNeil High School and serving as dean of ninth and 10th grade at St. Stephens School for five years. She is a recipient of the Governor of Texas Teaching Excellence Award. Austin Woman: Why did you choose to get into the education field? Barbara Garza: I realized when I was a student at UT, changing my major for the sixth time, that I basically loved the learning process. All my friends kept telling me not to become a teacher, that I would never make any money, and they were so right, but from the beginning I didn’t care about the money. Like most

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educators, I’ve been most passionate about making a positive difference for students. My dad, Frank Bronson, was a professor at UT for 44 years, and I am sure his love for teaching rubbed off on me as well. AW: What’s your favorite part of the day at AESA? BG: I love everything about what we do. I never wake up in the morning and think, oh there is something else I would rather be doing.   AW: What experiences have you had as a teacher or administrator that have shaped your current philosophy on education? BG: Educators have been shouting from the rooftops that student-teacher ratios need to be smaller, but that requires a different mentality by those in charge. Most suburban high school teachers carry a load close to 200 students. They can barely remember all of their students’ names, let alone have the time to actually give substantial commenting on essays, give one-on-one tutoring or adapt teaching styles to fit the needs of the individual student. In large private high schools, it’s becoming close to the same scenario. And during my five years at St. Stephens, I couldn’t stand it when a family would have some great travel opportunity to a place like India, for example, but I would have to say no because of the attendance policy. I always thought, wow, how great it would be, and what a better way to learn, if teachers really had a small number of students and schools had true flexibility. AW: What do you find most challenging about being an educator today?  BG: I admire any woman that is in an administrative position in the world of education. As an administrator, I have been called “sunshine,” had a coach shoot the finger at me in front of his basketball team and simply had to tough it out to gain and keep any administrative position until I created my own school. Now my challenges revolve around keeping AESA at the forefront of education. Larger, more traditional schools are simply too big to be able to change directions quickly enough. AW: Where do you see yourself and/or AESA in 10 years? BG: We have two more AESA campuses on the drawing board: AESA of Australia and AESA of the Atlantic. AESA of Australia will provide a global experience for our students and AESA of the Atlantic is going to be a research-based school for high school students. This will be located in Maine near Acadia National Park where I was raised and will be connected with the local research centers and colleges. aesaprepacademy.com

GIRLS’ SCHOOL OF AUSTIN Standing beside a desk in her fourth-grade classroom, Morgan strikes a gymnastics pose—gracefully reaching up and back and grabbing one leg kicked up behind her head—and contemplates boys. “Boys are kind of like, ‘Eww!’” says Morgan, wearing a school uniform of a purple polo and black shorts. “It’s more comfortable here with just girls.” “You can talk about anything you like,” her friend Eleanor, in a yellow polo and a skirt, chimes in. “I mean, boys can be annoying; they tease you,” Morgan continues, slowly bringing her leg down behind her. “And really, they’re not as smart as girls.” Welcome to the corner of Austin where girls can say this kind of thing without getting their hair pulled or a “wanna bet” challenge or a reprimand for provoking half the class. At the Girls’ School of Austin (GSA) girls grades kindergarten through eighth can stretch themselves in a supportive environment without the shadow boys can sometimes cast. “In an all-girl culture, students have to try on all the roles,” says Head of School Lisa Schmitt. “The smartest kid in class, the funniest kid—they are all girls.” The goal here is for students to become confident as leaders, collaborators and critical thinkers. By subtracting boys, the thinking goes, the girls gain opportunities and role models. “Students don’t think of limits, they think of opportunity. It’s very freeing that way.” The Girls’ School was founded in 2002 with five fifth- and sixth-graders attending classes in a house on Patterson Street—part of a wave of girlsonly schools opening across the country following research about how girls can be inhibited intellectually around boys. Today, the school has 130 students, 19 teachers and a shady campus in Tarrytown on the grounds of what used to be the Dill Elementary School. Studies cited by the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools show that girls who attend single-sex schools (versus those in coed classes) spend more time studying; are more confident in their academic performance, public speaking and writing skills; and are more likely to choose a career in engineering. Indeed, Schmitt says students of hers have gone on to perform high on the math section of the SAT, and two of the three National Merit Scholars at McCallum High School last year were Girls’ School graduates. More than 50 percent of the seventh graders invited to take the SAT have scored high enough to be asked to join the exclusive Duke Talent Identification Program. The curriculum is well-balanced with an emphasis on creativity and fine arts, Schmitt says. But math and science are stressed also, with all students taking algebra or beyond by eighth grade. “From the early grades, girls work under the assumption that


Lisa Schmitt, photographed in front of the interim administration building during reconstruction of the campus

they can do math and science,” says Schmitt. “That’s very powerful.” Schmitt says that the education is so strong across the board that many families come to the school for the quality of the curriculum rather than the single-gender environment. One of Schmitt’s tasks is to occasionally reassure parents who worry that their daughters will be missing out on something at an all-girls school. “Sometimes dads are hesitant, worried that their girls won’t know what to do with boys once they get into a coed situation,” says Schmitt. “Our feeling is that when they are in an environment with boys, we want them to be self-confident and know how they want to be treated by boys. By the time they leave here they are such poised girls that they make a good transition.” Girls will get plenty of exposure to boys at home, in their neighborhoods and churches and in extracurricular activities, girls’ school advocates contend. Plus, the school encourages them to enter academic competitions to test their mettle against boys. Students have won many regional and national awards in art and writing, and recently two students earned honors scores in the American Mathematics Com-

petition for eighth graders. Plus more than 40 percent of middle-schoolers placed at the bronze or higher level in the National Spanish Exam. A special, vibrant spirit is evident on the school grounds. Hopscotch squares and a mash-up of flowers and girls’ names are drawn in chalk on playground pavement. Middle-schoolers bustle around with what looks like jiffy pop pans, part of a solar experiment. Second graders dance joyfully in art class and other girls have gathered outside for some freeform painting on a plank of wood. “We’ve got a nice community here,” says Schmitt. And it’s about to get even better. The campus is in the process of being transformed—the old elementary school will be torn down, replaced by an eco-friendly design that the girls helped devise. “The girls wanted tree houses and a zipline,” says Schmitt, as she puts an architectural drawing on the table in her office. Instead, the girls will get a building in which every classroom is connected to the outdoors. There are butterfly gardens, riparian streams, wildflower areas, a roof garden and rainwater collection. Plus, two areas will be set up as outdoor classrooms—with boulders for sitting areas. “We spend a lot of time outside,” Schmitt says. “There will be lots of opportunities to use where we are as part of the classroom.” And during the construction process itself, you can be sure that the school will take advantage of that learning opportunity. “We’ll be sure to have hard-hat tours of the construction site,” says Schmitt. “And I’m sure the seventh grade physics students will be studying how the buildings go up.” Who knows? The Girls’ School of Austin may be in the process of breeding a whole contingent of female architects. Lisa Schmitt, GSA’s head of school since 2007, has a bachelor’s in physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic

Institute and a master’s in science education from Boston University. She began her career as a research scientist and has worked in education for more than 20 years. Committed to advancing girls in the fields of science and math, she currently teaches middle school math at GSA. Austin Woman: Why did you choose to get into the education field? Lisa Schmitt: I taught a lab course when I was a graduate student in space physics at Boston University and found that I really enjoyed teaching. At its best, teaching is a highly creative endeavor that requires excellent problem-solving skills. AW: What experiences have you had as a teacher or administrator that has shaped your current philosophy on education? LS: Thinking back on my own educational experiences, what I learned in classrooms was important, but real experiences (building a house from the ground up, backpacking solo in the White Mountains) probably taught me more about physics and the way the world works than anything I learned in class. So from the very beginning of my career as a teacher, it has been important to incorporate authentic, hands-on experiences, especially for girls, who can often be very successful in the classroom, but are often less likely to have applied that knowledge to the real world. Being able to do that in the company of other girls makes it easier for them to take a risk. Our students expect for adventure and science to go hand-in-hand. Outside of the classroom, they may go spelunking, rock climbing, horse packing or kayaking to learn how to apply what they’ve learned. They see that designing and creating is for both arts and science. They imagine, design and build things both in and out of the classroom. AW: What’s your favorite part of the day at Girls’ School of Austin? LS: I enjoy greeting each student every morning! AW: What do you find most challenging about being an educator today?  LS: One can argue over whether schools should include more STEM or more arts or more language, but one thing is certain: Providing opportunities for students to immerse themselves in the study of something—whether it is the violin, painting, Spanish or physics—disciplining themselves to dig deep and focus will be the most important skill we can give them. AW: Where do you see yourself and the Girls’ School of Austin in 10 years? LS: Without a crystal ball I can’t say for sure, but based upon our growth so far, I expect that the Girls’ School will continue to grow [enrollment has doubled in the past six years], which means more opportunities for girls in Austin! thegirlsschool.org

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Spanish Immersion Adriana Rodriguez creates citizens of the world at Jardin de Ninos Interlingua. By Andy East As world communication and economies become increasingly integrated, never has learning a foreign language been more important. While relocating to a foreign country might not be an option, immersing your child in another language at an Austin-area language immersion school is a viable alternative. “Being a world citizen means speaking more languages and being in touch with the world,” says Adriana Rodríguez, founder and director of Austin’s Jardín de Niños Interlingua Spanish Immersion International School. “[We get students] ready for a dynamic world and teach them to be more international-minded.” Founded in 2007 with 12 students, Jardín de Niños Interlingua allows infants through preschoolers to be fully immersed in the Spanish language, putting children on the fast track to fluency in Spanish. After preschool more languages are added to their multi-lingual repertoire. And in just six years, the school’s popularity has soared, expanding to 250 students and adding a second campus in Austin. “We don’t introduce English until kindergarten because we feel that students need a strong foreign language foundation,” says Rodríguez. By learning foreign languages at an early age, students are able to take advantage of what are known as “sensitive periods” of neuroplasticity when the brain is hyper-receptive to developing certain skills. From birth until puberty, children are in the language-learning sensitive period, allowing them to soak up languages like a sponge and develop native-like pronunciation. But after the onset of puberty, it becomes increasingly difficult to learn foreign languages and any new languages acquired would be more likely to be accompanied by stronger accents. “[The students] have so much plasticity that they can learn so fast,” says Rodríguez. “They are so eager to learn.” In addition to the heightened language learning potential during the sensitive period, other benefits of learning a foreign language at a young age include developing larger vocabularies, creative and critical thinking skills, myriad transdisciplinary skills such as research and social skills, and indepth cultural knowledge.

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“It’s not just that ‘red’ means ‘rojo,’” says Rodríguez. “[Students] not only get to learn the language, but also culture, traditions and different perceptions. Diversity is something that really enhances our classrooms. We have teachers from Mexico, Colombia, Spain and Peru.” At Jardín de Niños Interlingua, students learn about world conflicts, issues and cultures by taking part in collaborative activities designed to allow children to learn by experience and apply classroom lessons to their personal lives, often combining elements from several classes. Rodríguez cites one activity in which the teacher distributes a gallon of water to each student to teach students about water shortage. “The teacher would say, ‘You will take this gallon of water home and try to survive with it for a week,’ and then the students were to report how they washed their hands,” says Rodríguez. “[It allows] them to connect something they know with something new. By doing that you are fostering their natural curiosity and developing their skills.” Given that Spanish is the third most-spoken language in the world with nearly 400 million native speakers living in more than 20 Spanish-speaking countries across four different continents, learning to hablar Español at a young age will surely allow children to develop a highly-coveted, marketable skill that with which many of their peers will not be able to compete, and with the US-Mexico border a few hours drive south, Spanish is not only an important language internationally but also domestically.

According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2009 more than 35 million US residents ages five and older spoke Spanish at home, up from 17 million in 1990, giving the US the second largest population of Spanish speakers in the world behind Mexico. In addition to becoming bilingual and biliterate in Spanish and English, starting at age four, students at Jardín de Niños Interlingua begin developing proficiency in Mandarin Chinese and French, allowing students to be able to communicate with nearly 40 percent of the world’s population by the time they enroll in middle school. “You understand the different cultures and conflicts in the world by studying languages and culture,” says Rodríguez. “[It gives students a chance] to see and appreciate the world differently compared to someone who hasn’t been exposed to languages and foreign countries.” 2700 W. Anderson Lane, Ste. 601, 512.299.5732; 8707 Mountain Crest Dr., 512.299.5731; 107 Ranch Road 620, Ste. 300, Lakeway, 512.466.2409, austinbilingualschool.com


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Euro Trip “Mein plattenspieler ist kaput!” By JB Hager Perhaps the Hagers were not meant to travel Europe. In fact I have only been once before: My father and I went to Oktoberfest in Munich, which consisted of seven days of drunkenness standing on picnic tables singing “Sweet Caroline,” so that doesn’t really count. We could have done that at home. My wife and daughter had never been, until last month—we took our first “real” vacation. This just might not be our thing. Here is my recollection of last month’s European vacation in Switzerland. We started off arriving at the airport with two bags weighing more than the 50 pound limit. One guess as to who the bags in question belonged to? Women can justify everything they bring on a

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trip, whether they are 43 or 11 years old. A hundred dollars extra later, we were off. As soon as we landed in Zurich the following morning, my daughter declared she was a vegetarian. “Can’t your love of animals wait another week?” we pleaded. To no avail, there would be no Schnitzel being ordered up without tears. Since we were in a meat and potatoes kind of city, our diet consisted of stopping for pretzels or chocolate approximately every 10 to 15 feet for seven days straight. When we weren’t eating pretzels and chocolate, I was searching for beer. Beer, chocolate and pretzels are easy to find in Switzerland—you can pretty much stop any local stranger on the street and they will pull all three out of their pockets. In between snacking, my girls were always looking for a drugstore to purchase a necessity they overlooked while packing. It’s one thing to run in and out of the store, grabbing what you need, but it’s quite another when they peruse each aisle taking their sweet time. “Come on girls! There are pretzels and chocolate waiting for us!” Much of our days consisted of walking around the city until we all declared the need for more comfortable shoes, which we would again have to

stop and purchase. We would walk for miles and miles until my girls recognized a store from back home, such as Zara, H&M or Vans. We could have saved thousands of dollars and hours going to The Domain instead. A large portion of my time was spent being the steward of everyone’s devices. “Dad, I need my iPad charged” and “Honey, I can’t get online” were constant topics of conversation. When we weren’t online, we were talking about getting online or looking for somewhere to get online. Apparently we enjoy being online whether anything is happening or not. And apparently a Wi-Fi router costs millions of dollars in Zurich because no one seemed to have one. Transportation would have been a breeze if we weren’t all terrified of trains and gondolas, the two most popular means of transportation. The train stations gave me a heart attack because we felt like the only people who couldn’t figure it out. Gondolas need no explanation as to why they are awful, but you need one to get in or out of any village. We did rent a car, but we didn’t know until we got into it that it was a stick shift. I was too embarrassed to go back to the counter and ask for an automatic so my wife can drive when I’ve


had too much to drink. So, I lost my DD on our daytrips and had to sit there and sip coffee while they had chocolate and pretzels. One thing my wife and I became very good at was navigating roundabouts. The “in car” navigation would announce the upcoming roundabout entrance and which exit we wanted—one, two, three or four, or sometimes there were more. The only way we could succeed was for my wife and I both to announce aloud, “One, two, OK take the next one!” It was a team effort. The gondolas are popular for going up the mountain, but for going down, Europeans have devised many scary and expensive methods. You can toboggan, bobsled, zip-line or slide on your behind. They don’t really care how you go down as long as you give them 50 francs. Speaking of money, I now understand why so many European men carry a man purse. With denomination equivalent to our $1 or $5 bill in coin form over there, everyone is constantly handing you coins. In turn, you are constantly handing everyone else coins, often not even sure why. “Hello local person, would you like one of my coins? I’m from America.” After a day or two, the man purse starts to make sense since most of their money doesn’t fold. The last few items that really threw us for a loop were: They think nothing of a hotel key being one or two feet long and resembling a medieval dungeon key. There is a dire need for locksmiths to update some hotel doors. If you ask for a glass of water, they act like you are from outer space. The looks on their faces if you wanted water without bubbles…well, let’s just say they looked at us like we were the poorest people on earth if we can’t afford to have bubbles. We were on the German-speaking side of Switzerland. I know just enough German to get me into trouble. I think when everyone travels they fantasize about rattling off whatever foreign tongue they learned in high school and college, but regardless of what I had thought out in my head, all that would come out of my mouth was, “Mein plattenspieler ist kaput.” That translates, my friends, to “my record player is broken.” I eventually became so frustrated that I bought a vintage record player, smashed it in the streets and shouted “Mein plattenspieler ist kaput!” I felt much better and really connected with the locals. That, my friends, is my recollection of my European summer vacation with the family. Pretzel? JB Hager can be heard as part of the JB and Sandy Morning Show on Mix 94.7 Austin, weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m.

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3. We’re Amazed at How Many of You Want to Sleep With Us Studies suggest that most men you know have at one time or another imagined having sex with you. What you may not know, however, is most of them secretly believe that you probably want to have sex with them too. 4. You Have a Lot to Say You might be wondering why it is that your guy likes to hear you talking, but yet he rarely listens. Women have many wonderful things to say, but sometimes when our brains are full, we begin to compartmentalize this information into a beautiful song. Your voice soothes us like a familiar television rerun, and we can laugh at the funny parts while tuning out the commercial interruptions (aka “Can you unplug the sink,” etc.). 5. You Put Others Before You Men can be heroic and compassionate, but women are the masters of putting others before them.

6. You Remember Everything My wife remembers everything. Me, I remember things the way I want to remember them, regardless of the truth. Unsurprisingly, there is research that suggests men and women use different parts of their brain when keeping track of events. To keep this short—so I don’t forget what I was about to write—women use their emotions to drive their memory to achieve greater detail. Men use a simpler, more tactical form of memory, which means we might remember where a street is, or the best hotdog stand in town, but when it comes to keeping track of dates, names and faces, our memory falls short. So, forgetting anniversaries is not entirely our fault. 7. You Can Solve Problems We Didn’t Know Existed Every guy has had the experience of going along thinking everything is fine, when suddenly he’s approached by his better half and told there is a problem. She will raise her voice in concern, perhaps a little rage, and then onto compassion. On most occasions, she has already put a lot of thought into it. She has looked at every possible angle and come up with the one solution she thinks will make things better. As long as it does not involve too much work, us guys will smile appreciatively, nod our heads and say, “OK.” 8. You’re Always Smiling Testosterone may be what makes a man macho, and some scientists theorize it might also be responsible for those brooding brows women seem to love so much (like Edward Cullen of Twilight). Men are at a disadvantage when it comes to being happy. The responsibility may rest on a single gene associated with processing dopamine and serotonin, the stuff that makes people smile. Unfortunately, the testosterone in men’s bodies may hinder the success factor of this gene, limiting our happiness. 9. You Care How You Look Around Other Women Men understand the importance of a first impression, but we are fascinated that women seem so concerned about their appearance—especially when they are going out with a group of other women. 10. The Clerk Gives You an Extra Can of Tomato Sauce, and You Drive 20 Miles to Bring It Back It’s not that guys aren’t moral, but we usually have different standards. Studies suggest that when men are in competition mode, they are more apt to bend the rules in order to be the victor. According to research, this has nothing to do with testosterone and everything to do with our sociocultural expectations to be the dominant, macho man. Just remember ladies...everything we do, we do it for you (insert song by Bryan Adams).


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Luke Padwick Saving lives, one emergency center at a time. By Molly McManus, Photo by Rudy Arocha It’s a good thing he knows CPR, because he’s going to take your breath away. Once you’ve regulated your heart rate, say aloha to the six-foot-three, heroically handsome Luke Padwick, MD. Hailing from Pahala, Hawaii, Padwick is an emergency medicine physician and entrepreneur, and lately he has been taking emergency room care to a new level. Padwick’s brainchild, the Austin Emergency Center, opened its doors this March as the first locally owned freestanding emergency room. The second location opens this month, making these the only freestanding ERs in Central and South Austin. With little to no wait time, AEC is unlike your typical emergency room. The patient-doctor relationship is developed and nourished through quality care and followup. The beautiful décor is designed to comfort with local artwork displayed—Padwick’s touch. He defines what AEC provides as “concierge-level service,” making it an enjoyable experience for the patient. Talk about putting the hospital in hospitality! “In emergency medicine, you work hard and you play hard,” says Padwick. His makes room in his schedule between long ER shifts for some quality time off. From surfing in Hawaii, where one of his five siblings still lives, to visiting his dad’s family in England and his mom’s family in Jamaica, Padwick maintains close ties with his very large clan while traversing the world. The diagnosis? Padwick is sophisticatedly cultured but down-to-earth, sweet, and charmingly nerdy all wrapped into one package. When in Austin, Padwick enjoys biking and running, and he recently began sailing lessons. He’s a major foodie, especially loving Rainey Street, his backyard playground. The perfect complement to his active lifestyle? “I’m looking for a woman who wants kids, who’s smart, but who isn’t afraid to ‘let her hair down,’” he says. “Someone who can be stunning at a restaurant but who also doesn’t mind getting dirty while on a hike.” Do you fit the doctor’s orders? I suggest feigning a fever and confessing your feelings bedside at AEC to our simply irresistible physician. You’ll be channeling Robert Palmer as you serenade, “Doctor, doctor, give me the news; I got a bad case of lovin’ you!” Austin Emergency Center, 3563 Far West Blvd., Ste. 110, 512.481.2321; 4015 S. Lamar Blvd. (opening late August), austiner.com

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Brain-Balancing Act Anna Bauereis and Brain Balance of Austin offer nonmedical solutions to help children with ADD/ADHD, Tourette’s, dyslexia, Asperger’s and autism. By Molly McManus, Photo by Elizabeth Shear Survival mode. This is a circumstance many families find themselves in when their child is battling an imbalance of the brain. These imbalances manifest in a variety of ways, oftentimes labeled as ADD/ ADHD, Tourette’s, dyslexia, Asperger’s and autism. The day-to-day can be difficult: A jacket drops to the floor and your daughter breaks into an emotional episode; your son takes 20 minutes to tie his shoe, making everyone late; you receive a phone call from your child’s school reporting him or her as not meeting classroom requirements. These scenarios are all too common, placing strain on the entire family. Although there are theories as to why brain imbalances happen, ultimately the cause is unimportant. It doesn’t matter how a child came to have learning or social disabilities; what matters is how to help overcome these imbalances. The Brain Balance Achievement Center of Austin offers a solution. The center is part of an educational franchise, with 54 locations nationwide. The highly trained staff of teachers, sensory motor coaches and nutritionists follow the research and teachings of Dr. Robert Melillo, founder of the national Brain Balance program, providing a nonmedical, comprehensive and individual treatment plan to help kids age four to 21 overcome brain disorders. Spanning more than a year, the scientificallybased curriculum includes an extensive assessment to show any imbalances in the brain, 12-weeks of intensive training, nutritional counseling, follow-up evaluations to ensure treatment continues to work and invaluable support along the way. “I sit down with parents and educate them on what’s going on with their child,” explains Anna Bauereis, center director and owner of the Brain Balance Center of Austin. “I don’t sell this or push this on parents. It is a commitment, and it’s hard.” “One of my goals as an owner of Brain Balance is to support parents in the uniqueness of their child,” Bauereis continues. “We walk alongside parents and the schools to get rid of these imbalances and prove the child can do it.” During the 12-week intensive program, a child comes to the center three times a week, working on the weakest parts of their brain. Parents do brain exercises at home with their child and report back to Brain Balance about breakthroughs. Bau-

Resources Brain Balance recommends two books to help you better understand what’s going on in your child’s brain and aid you on your journey.

Disconnected Kids: The Groundbreaking Brain Balance Program for Children with Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, and Other Neurological Disorders, by Dr. Robert Melillo Creator of the Brain Balance Achievement Centers, Dr. Robert

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Melillo breaks down the science behind the Brain Balance program in this informative book. Melillo is an internationally known lecturer, author, educator, researcher and clinician in the areas of neurology, rehabilitation, neuropsychology and neurobehavioral

disorders in children. Disconnected Kids is given in your initial visit, providing you with the same assessment offered at Brain Balance, but according to Bauereis, almost every parent comes back to the program, as trying to do it all at home can be extremely difficult.

Reconnected Kids: Help Your Child Achieve Physical, Mental, and Emotional Balance, by Dr. Robert Melillo Reconnected Kids is given to families when they are ready to move forward with the Brain Balance program. The

book discusses desirable and undesirable behaviors happening for a child. According to a child’s age, the book outlines what the child should be able to do in terms of social, emotional, physical and academic behavior.


ereis works with schools to offer an analysis of the student, to assist with any problems in the classroom and to try to get teachers to focus on weaknesses as well as strengths. “Teachers promote the positives that somebody can do and what they are good at—I’m tapping into what they are weak at,” explains Bauereis, who knows that the only way to see improvement is to focus on these weaknesses. Bauereis offers guidance to parents, so when a child finishes the program, new expectations are set in place. If a mother has been tying her child’s shoe to save time and continues to exhibit this tendency, the child will continue to not tie the shoe, knowing that his or her mom will. Brain Balance retrains parents to stop these practices. “Parents are just surviving,” she says with a knowing smile. “They are just trying to get through the day-to-day. They have habits.” Bauereis is all too familiar with survival mode and relates to these parents. A mother of five and grandmother to seven, Bauereis went through Brain Balance with her son prior to owning the center. He was 10 years old, had processing issues and couldn’t read. Bauereis witnessed and celebrated her son and other children’s successes. “I sat on the couch for six months, watching kids come and go. Kids with dyslexia, Tourette’s…no lon-

ger,” she asserts. “I mean this stuff was gone.” But it’s no walk in the park. Parents must put their ego aside and be okay knowing that although they might have done everything right as a parent, it wasn’t right for the unique needs of their child. Bauereis invites parents to partake in the program if they are open-minded and willing to work with others to help make change. The in-depth approach provides parents, children and schools the tools they need to be successful individuals, without the help of medication. Brain Balance offers a natural approach, fixing the issues once and for all. Amazingly, 86 percent of children that are on medication and go through Brain Balance are off the medication in three or four weeks. Instead of suppressing undesirable behaviors, Brain Balance works specifically in the area of the brain that is causing these behaviors, addressing all underlying problems. One of the most difficult aspects for parents at Brain Balance is the nutritional component. In addition to vision therapy, dichotic listening and occupational therapy, nutritional assessment and advice is presented. Nutrition is an important factor in regulating the brain, as food can drastically react with our processing capabilities. For many children with imbalances, major dietary changes must be made.

Bauereis recounts one of her student’s who had a speech impediment. Within just a few sessions, the child no longer battled this impediment. “For 12 weeks [the student] had to eliminate dairy from his diet,” Bauereis says. “In the 13th week, he could have milk. And he loved milk. Within 24 hours, he needed speech therapy again.” “For my son, it was peanuts. He would have a PB&J and two days later he was an emotional basket case,” she says, explaining that behaviors effected by food usually surface 24 to 48 hours later, and parents should monitor how children respond with food. Brain Balance takes treatment extremely seriously and wants families to do the same. If you don’t follow the diet or show up for your appointments, you are not welcomed back. It’s the only way a child will fully conquer the imbalances within their brain. Bauereis and Brain Balance are there to help any family who is willing to take the next step, providing everything under one roof. The survival mode mentality will melt away, the bigger picture taking hold: a happy, motivated and well-rounded child, who no longer has to struggle. Brain Balance Center of Austin, 3267 Bee Caves Road, Ste. 118, 512.328.7771, brainbalancecenters.com

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Wise Mind Parenting and family expert Dr. Laura Kastner shares strategies for raising tweens and teens. By Rachel Merriman If you are a parent to a tween or teen, you’ve probably recently engaged in a conversation similar to this one: “Mom, can I go to Emma’s house tonight?” “Absolutely not. Her parents are out of town, and I don’t want you to be there without supervision.” “Ugh, you never trust me to take care of myself! You’re such a control freak!” “Don’t talk back to me like that, young lady. I am your mother!” “I wish you weren’t! I hate you!” “I’ve had it—you’re grounded!” If this teen-versus-parent power struggle sounds at all familiar, you’re not alone. The teenage years are hard on virtually all parents, and even so-called “normal families” need strategies to deal with the tumultuous period of adolescence. “In that situation, the parent needs to step back and understand that yes, they were right to say no to the party, but it’s unrealistic for a kid to accept it and like that decision,” Dr. Kastner says. “It’s best to say, ‘I bet you’re disappointed. I’m really sorry, but I’m going to stick with my decision.’ Let them have the last word and call it a day.” Dr. Kastner’s empathetic yet logical response to this scenario is the basis of her newest book, Wise-Minded Parenting, which focuses on using the “wise mind” as a tool to help parents deal with conflict. When you become angry during a heated confrontation, breathing deeply will allow you to access your “reason mind.” Once you return to a calmer state, you’ll be able to deal with the situation in an authoritative yet loving manner. “Wise mind helps you take a step back, look at the wide-angle lens of the situation and ask, ‘What are my goals?’ Make your goal to say no to the party, not control their negative emotions or get them to see that you’re right in your decision,” Dr. Kastner says. Remaining “wise-minded” in the middle of an

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intense argument can help you build a better parent-child relationship, which is the first of WiseMinded Parenting’s seven essentials for raising successful tweens and teens. The essentials—secure attachment, self-control, academic success, social thriving, emotional flourishing, strong character and physical health—are drawn from wellrespected research and Dr. Kastner’s 30 years of experience working with children, teens and their families. “All parents want those things, but there’s still a lot of talk about how to get there,” Dr. Kastner observes. “Fifty years of research shows there’s no mystery about how you get those things. There might be a mystery about how you get your life organized enough to nail all those priorities, but how you make a successful teen is not much in question anymore.” It is often helpful for parents to understand why their teenager is acting like a brat, to put it mildly. Research indicates that significant physical changes occur in the brain around age 13, in which about half of the neutral circuits in the prefrontal cortex are “pruned” so new connections can form. The prefrontal cortex is in charge of essential skills such as planning ahead, decisionmaking and impulse control. During this remodeling phase, a teen’s behavior is governed by the emotional parts of the brain, known as the limbic system, rather than the rational part of the brain. “That research has huge ramifications for how any of us look at a teenager’s behavior,” Dr. Kastner explains. “Many parents say [to their child], ‘You made a bad choice.’ The bad news is, in situations where kids say, ‘Let’s go jump off that cliff’ or, ‘let’s spray paint that dumpster at school,’ they didn’t make a choice.” Brain growth continues from age 13 for the next decade or so, making what teens do during this highopportunity time a factor in how their brain develops. Whether they’re learning a new language or sitting in front of the television, their activities become “wired in.” Once you’ve developed your wise-mind skills and have formed a loving bond with your teen, you can encourage them to engage in healthy after-school activities, which

Wise-Minded Mantras

Straight from the pages of Wise-Minded Parenting, try repeating these mantras to yourself the next time you’re seeing red. “My teen is doing the best she can, given her age and stage.” “Good character does not guarantee good behavior full-time.” “My love messages really matter, even if my teen can’t resist expressing disgust or irritation.” “My goal is to demonstrate emotional intelligence, not to control my teen’s reactions.” “I will not cave when faced with high emotions.”

will give them skills they can use for the rest of their life—and keep them out of trouble. “A lot of what I try to do [in therapy] is help parents figure out protective factors that would help their kids get on a road that leads them out of risk-taking, rather than just punishment about everything they do wrong,” Dr. Kastner says. August can be an especially stressful time as kids return to school, and when they struggle academically, parents wonder what to do. It’s natural to want to lecture them about their future to kick them into gear, but instead try a tactic Dr. Kastner calls “leveraging responsibility with reward.” Offering your teen use of the car for getting good grades sounds like a bribe, but think of it as their “paycheck” for showing up to work. “Starting at day one, establish homework time,” Dr. Kastner advises. “If getting that iPhone is contingent upon doing their homework for 90 minutes, it’s more likely they’re going to comply with that expectation.” Don’t despair if you try these strategies and they don’t work at first. It takes practice. Dr. Kastner advises doing what you can, whether it’s working on your wise mind, encouraging your teen to pick up activities or just trying to be more empathetic about their state of mind. “Being a parent is a huge responsibility,” Dr. Kastner acknowledges. “Think like a CEO and consider where to put your resources. Every family is different in what they need to work on.”


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a l l t h e r igh t qu e stions

Allergy Action for Your Child AllerMates founder Iris Shamus’s essential questions to ask about your child’s food allergies. By Malia Bradshaw When Iris Shamus’s son was 13 months old, he turned purple after biting into a cashew. Over the next few years, they discovered other allergic reactions to eggs, salmon and sesame products. Though protecting him from his allergens was manageable during his early years, things got complicated when he went off to school. If your child has allergies, leaving him in the care of others can be unnerving. Teachers and peers might not be aware of his allergen history, and accidents can ensue. Attempting to take control of her son’s health, Shamus created AllerMates, products that help alert others of a child’s allergies. Fun and colorful wristbands, dog tags and snack bags can assist in protecting your child. Based on her own experience, Shamus recommends asking these essential questions about your child’s allergies. My child has a food allergy. What should I do? First of all, know that you are not alone. Food allergies have become all too common and there are many families nowadays dealing with similar situations such as yours. There are many resources available to you and with a little guidance and the right tools, you can take control and manage your child’s allergies. The most crucial step you can take toward keeping your child safe and healthy is helping them avoid their allergens. Reading every food label and taking notice of every morsel your child eats may seem overwhelming at first, but it will eventually become second nature. How do I manage my child’s allergies when they are not under my care? Leaving your child with severe allergies in the care of others can be scary, but there are many things

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you can do to help AllerMates ensure the safety founder Iris Shamus of your child. Start off by developing a communicative relationship with your child’s school, camp, babysitters and anyone else who will be watching over them in your absence. Take the necessary steps to ensure that everyone is well aware of your child’s allergies, and that they will assist in avoidance of the wrong foods. Also, make sure they are well-informed about how to handle an emergency situation properly. Passing out copies of your child’s Allergy Action Plan is a great way to ensure their safety. If your child has been prescribed an epinephrine auto injector by their doctor, an EpiPen or Auvi-Q, make sure their life-saving medication is clearly labeled and accessible to your child at all times. What exactly is an Allergy Action Plan? An Allergy Action Plan is a form that has an easy-tofollow format for handling any allergy exposure or reaction. Your child’s school may provide a standard form, or you can download a form for free at allermates.com/faap. What about medicines? My child was prescribed epinephrine by their physician. Epinephrine is a medication that can help treat anaphylaxis, the most extreme type of allergic reaction. If your child has been prescribed an epinephrine auto-injector by their doctor in case of accidental exposure to their allergen, make sure that their potentially life-saving medication is always on hand. This includes play-dates, sleepovers, traveling and eating out at restaurants. As far as school or camp, make sure their medicine is clearly labeled and dropped off with the correct party before your child

starts their first day. There should always be two doses available to your child. Don’t forget to pay attention to the expiration date of the medicine. Epinephrine does expire and you’ll want to make sure that when it does, you will be ready to get a refill for a fresh set. What do I tell or teach my child about their allergies? Again, helping your child avoid their allergens is the most crucial step you can take in keeping them safe and sound. Having them wear some sort of identifying jewelry or accessory that clearly displays their allergy is very helpful. In addition, make sure you teach your child the allergy safety rules. This includes always washing hands before and after meals to prevent cross contamination, and never eating anything unless they are certain that it is safe (that means avoiding any unlabeled or unpackaged foods). Also, accepting foods or snacks from friends is a nono! Lastly, you should make sure they are well aware of the early signs of an allergic reaction so they can alert an adult as soon as possible. allermates.com

Photo by Krista Brown Photography.

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t h e l a st wor d

Lessons Learned There’s a little paper ornament that hangs on my Christmas tree every year. It’s shaped like a bell and has a picture of a little girl with a ponytail sticking out to the side, wearing a necklace of pink hearts. On the other side of the ornament is a lovely note telling her how terrific she was as a poltergeist in the student musical, embellished with warm words about how she makes Room Seven such a special place to be. It is simply signed, “Love, Beth.” It’s a small name for someone with a heart as big as hers. Beth was my third grade teacher; she had an impact on my life, and I’m certain on every child’s life she touched, that is difficult to put into words. As Helen Keller once said, “The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched—they must be felt with the heart.” Her influence on us will last a lifetime. As a tiny, shy first grader, I looked on in wonder as her class marched down the hallways of Lincoln Elementary, always enthusiastic and cheerful. Whenever they entered the cafeteria or visited another classroom they sang fun, silly songs with their jolly leader. A little intimidated yet a whole lot curious, I hoped that I, too, would one day have the honor of walking the halls with Mrs. Vogt’s third grade class. Mrs. Vogt was Beth to those of us in her class. She was kind of like a grown up version of Pollyanna—a whole lot of enthusiasm with a splash of sunshine. Beth infused each day with excitement. A team of parents by her side, we explored the rain forests and beaches of Washington State, mastered long

division and learned to write calligraphy. She brought Willy Wonka and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang to life as if we had been sucked into the stories themselves. We were constantly learning catchy songs, and soon I was singing wherever I could find an audience, having found more confidence under her wing than I ever had as a shy first grader. She taught us to generate as many “warm fuzzies” as we possibly could. You know, that feeling you get when someone does something nice, says a kind word or gives you a helping hand? Those are “warm fuzzies”—she loved them! When someone asks whom my favorite teacher is, I fondly think of Beth. She is a blessing. Not only did she have a vibrant way of teaching and engaging students, she had a way of making each and every one of her students feel special. She taught us about love. Not in so many words, but forever by her example. I haven’t seen Beth in many years, but I will be forever grateful for her teaching me one of my best and most beautiful lessons. Beth taught us to love as well as to enjoy learning, and that is a priceless gift. 

—Tia Marie Kemp

October’s Last Word topic will be “My Most Memorable Film.” To be considered, email a 500-word submission by September 1 to submissions@awmediainc.com. Illustration by Sarah Quatrano.

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