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A pril 2012

• Royal Indulgence Grand Opening • 2012 Acura TSX Wagon • 2012 Nissan Quest • Galveston Bay Fishing • Tabella: Upscale Dining in Kemah • Buzz in the Bayou City • Community News & Events

April 2012



ON THE COVER 2012 LiveWell Women’s Conference presented by Christus St. John Hospital. Design by Brandon Rowan


Chairman/Publisher Rick Clapp President Rob Kumar Art Director Brandon Rowan Vice President of Sales Patty Kane Sales & Marketing Patty Bederka Natalie Epperly Colleen Martin Amber Sample


Use It or Lose It


Part One


Presented by Christus St. John Hospital


BAHM Hosts Fantastic St. Patrick Day’s Dinner


Awesomeville Open Homes Tour April 13-29


BAHEP’s Prestigious Presidential Award


The Real Deal


Presents Donation to Boys and Girls Harbor


Kat Sanford of Kat Sanford Productions


Achievers and Leaders Scholarship


Rehabilitating Barbours Cut Wharves One and Two


Even with Low Rates, You Can Invest for Income


With Envoy Mortgage and Casey Montgomery

Dental Health Living My Dream 2012 LiveWell Women’s Conference Tabella at Clear Creek Winery Tuscan Lakes Celebrates New Name BAHEP Honors Mary Alys Cherry Precinct 8 Constable Phil Sandlin Songwriter Kelly Mcguire CLACC Member Services Division Chair Ron Carter Clear Lake Port of Houston Authority Financial Focus The Mortgage Man

columns 16

Graphic Designer Victoria Ugalde

The Buzz in the Bayou City Best Foot Forward!

17 CLICK! Seabrook Association’s 3rd Annual Pelican Ball

Photography Brian Stewart Community Affairs Director Lillian Harmon


Comfort Cruisers

Intern Michelle Kaldenberg


Sailor’s Delight, Fisherman’s Plight


Looking for Patterns


Standing Up


Bay Area Houston Magazine is produced monthly. All rights reserved. Material may not be reproduced by any means whatsoever without written permission. Advertising rates are available upon request. Please address all correspondence to: Bay Area Houston Magazine P.O. Box 1032 Seabrook, TX 77586 281.474.5875



In Wheel Time The Admiral’s Log Texas Meditations Nourishing the Mind

in each issue


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012


Advertiser’s Index


Lakewood Yacht Club News and Events


Events Calendar

It’s Back! Bay Area Houston’s Economy Rocks!


ow, in less than 60 days we have seen our local economy go from being stagnant to beginning to rock. Our forecast and results have proved we are on target for a great year! The year 2012 started out slowly, worse than last year, but in the last two months the monetary waves of the economy are rolling into our area. Bay Area Houston Magazine’s financial figures are up this quarter and the summer, fall and winter months look solid. All of our popular covers have been sold out. Our sales are up and more marketing and advertising projects are on the books. The advertising and marketing industry is the first to see a downward slide, or conversely, an upward swing. We (the media) see things way into the future because advertising and marketing is planned and placed months in advance. Remember it still takes vision, planning, knowledge, action, review and the spending of money to make money. In the past corporations have made their forecasts and held to their figures and budgets. The budgets would be finalized in October or mid-November. Then the holidays would come and after the New Year everyone was excited to go back to work. Executives were refreshed with new budgets and were optimistic about the new year’s results. But today most executives do not have an idea about their budgets until after the holidays and most have been cut 10% - 20%. That leaves them and their people very little to look forward to. Then they wait through January and February, and then think about implementing and spending money in March or April. These companies create their own doom. Wait, wait, wait, cut, cut, and cut until you are out of business. Presently, the smart companies begin their advertising and marketing campaigns’ now and the rest shall follow but it may be too late for the smaller firms. It will cost them more to play to catch up and consequently they may not have the necessary funds to get back in the game. Without a doubt, the large corporations or largethinking entrepreneurs know it takes money to make money. As entrepreneurs, we are calculated risk takers. We know from experience when to take an important risk to grow our companies and keep up with the big guys. Our education, experience and instincts tell us that when times get tough, you work harder, smarter, network more, use direct mail, increase direct sales calls, increase budgets for advertising and special events and most importantly improve the quality of your product. Every time we have enhanced our quality and increased our advertising we have seen our sales increase. You constantly must tell customers you are improving your product and then show them. This costs money but the rewards are grand! In business we all love success and making money. It is simple. If you want to be successful, you must surround yourself with successful money-oriented colleagues, smart people, friends and family that have the same financial goals as you. These people must be optimistic and also take calculated risks. Surround yourself only with people that are for you and support you. That may only be one person

but, having one person for you is power in itself. Having a negative family member, friend, co-worker, significant other, wife, husband and or partner will always keep you from reaching the top. Many of these nay saying people try to destroy or undo your success or happiness either subconsciously or consciously. Once you observe them, give them three chances to change or eliminate them. You will see things will get better and improve immediately once these poor pitiful creatures are out of your life. Here are a few characteristics seen in these people: victims, very insecure, cannot get over a hurt or disappointment, envy others, always trying to one up you, trying to embarrass you at work or social settings, sabotaging your business and leaders by giving out inappropriate information or talking negatively about you to clients openly at social functions. These people feel that you are vulnerable and they attack behind your back. Unfortunately, these individuals have not learned the secrets of life and living. My motto is “words are seeds.” They are powerful when planted in your brain and they quickly grow. Negativity does not come from just the inside of your company. It comes from customers, people, vendors, clients, etc. You need to eliminate them as well. In the business community we all share and know who these people are. You may miss some of their funds but be confident that new and better business is coming your way. Finally, successful people in business and life always ask this important question. “Is the aggravation worth the compensation?” The answer is usually no! If the answer is no in your personal or business life, then say goodbye. The only thing that holds you back is fear and fear alone. Make your decision based on confidence and strength. I guarantee you will be better and your company will excel. Well, I am very excited about our future and all of the success that is yet to come. If you want to join an energized group and do business with a company that can get you beyond where you want to go please call me. May the Bay Area grow, and prosperity come to all. God Bless,

Writers Don Armstrong In Wheel Time

Rod Evans Boating/Fitness

Michael Gos Texas Meditations

Captain Joe Kent Fishing

Andrew Jeffries Bay Area Bandstand

Betha Merit Travel/Food/Wine

Pat Patton Click

Dr. Ed Reitman Nourishing the Mind

Roseann Rogers The Buzz

Zach Tate Music

Rick Clapp Publisher/Chairman

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


Advertiser’s Index Alan’s Swampshack Page 37 Amadeus Page 44 The Arms Room Page 46 BAHRMA Page 46 Baubles and Beads Page 47 Bayway Homes Page 27 Bella’s Carpet Page 20 Boudreaux’s on the Bayou Page 49 Buccaneer Page 15 Bungalow Dry Goods Page 49 City of Dickinson Page 44 Claudio & Mattia’s Piano Bar Page 26 Clear Creek Winery Page 32 Clothes Horse Page 47 Coastal Plastic Surgery Page 28 College of the Mainland Page 14 Cullen’s Upscale American Grill Page 39 Di Amici Upscale Events Page 24 Dickinson BBQ Page 45 Dr. J. Derek Tieken Page 54 Edward Jones Page 50 Elegant Nails Page 10 Encore Resale Shop Page 36 Envoy Mortgage Page 51 First Baptist Church Seabrook Page 53 Fischer Irrigation Page 20 Floyd’s Cajun Seafood Page 38 Fondren Orthopedic Page 2 Frog at Home Page 13 Ginger Snaps Page 47 Guidry News page 46 Gulf Coast Palapas Page 40 Hairway to Heaven Page 51 Harbour Plastic Surgery Page 55 Head to Footsies Page 49 House Calls Page 33 Houston Technology Center Page 6 Island Furniture Page 15 Jeter Memorial Funeral Home Page 14 JuJu’s Beachwear Page 51 Jeanette Williams Foundation Page 52 Kemah Boardwalk Page 29 Las Haciendas Page 51 Life Fellowship Church Page 53 Mamacita’s Mexican Restaurant Page 45 Martha Turner Properties Page 57 Mayfield Manor Page 15 MD Anderson Cancer Center Page 4 Mediterraneo Market & Cafe Page 14 Memorial Hermann Page 7 Miss Kemah Pageant Page 56 Oasis RV Park Page 41 Oasis Salon and Spa Page 21 Opus Bistro Page 15 Park Avenue Showplace Antiques Page 47 Pasadena Strawberry Fest Page 37 Perk and Puff Lounge Page 10 Pirate SC Page 36 Prestige Flooring Page 10 Ron Carter Clear Lake Page 35 Royal Indulgence Page 5 Salon La Rouge Page 50 Schlitterbahn Page 12 South Shore Grille Page 25 Space City Plumbing Page 36 Spine Center Page 59 Star Toyota Page 19 Stylin’ with Linda Page 50 Sylvan Beach Day Festival Page 42 The Terrace Page 14 Texas Equusearch Page 3 Texas First Bank Page 48 That’s Haute Boutique Page 10 Tuscan Lakes Page 34 Unicare Dental Page 60 Victory Marine Page 50


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

DENTAL HEALTH Use it or Lose it Only a generation ago, gradually losing teeth and replacing them with either a fixed bridge, a removable partial or full denture was a fact of life for most Americans. nfortunately each option led to either grinding healthy teeth down or exerting too much force on the remaining teeth. Ultimately both options led to early loss of remaining healthy teeth. As a result, a large segment of our population entered their golden age with false teeth, long span bridges, or no teeth at all. The most damaging effect of tooth loss was not even being discussed much those days. Few people knew about the localized osteoporosis that developed due to loss of the tooth. People noticed that their gums shrunk gradually once the tooth was lost, even when they replaced the gap with a conventional method. But they assumed that it was normal. That perception has changed substantially during the last two decades. The likelihood of our generation going through the same oral degradation is steadily decreasing. There are several reasons for this change: availability of more information, better access to dental care, and last but not least, the introduction of titanium dental implants. When teeth are lost, the underlying jaw bone shrinks due to lack of stimulation. Aside from the cosmetic effects on our smile and facial appearance, people with missing teeth develop other equally significant complications. Here are a few examples: 1. People with missing teeth are unable to chew their food as efficiently. One of the most important phases in digestion is called “The Cephalic phase”. This phase of gastric secretion occurs while the food is being eaten. It results from the pleasure associated with sight, smell, thought, or taste of food. Inability to chew the food with comfort and ease makes eating a chore as opposed to a

pleasant experience. People with missing teeth also have a tendency swallow their food prematurely. Nutritionists agree that the more we chew - the less we eat and the better we digest our food. People with lost back teeth are also more likely to avoid harder food. Soft foods are also usually high in carbohydrates and fat but often very low in protein, raw vegetable, vitamins, and minerals. Consequently, people who eat mainly soft foods may become undernourished and eat a larger volume of food. That often leads to weight gain and obesity which over time leads to numerous disorders, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. 2. The traditional replacement methods only address replacement of missing teeth not their roots. The most significant effect of tooth loss is the loss of localized jaw bone that is no longer needed to hold the root of the tooth in place. The science of biophysics has proven that the concept of “use it or lose it” applies to the human body as well. Through chewing we apply modest pressure on the jawbone. That pressure stimulates the bone (similar to exercise) and keeps it dense and strong. Many people who have lost one or more teeth believe the personal impact is strictly cosmetic. They don’t realize that missing teeth can lead to significant bone loss over time that can alter the jaw structure, cause other teeth to shift, and change the shape of your face while weakening your jaw bone. 3. Although partial or full dentures are a less expensive alternative to dental implants they require a lot of care. They must be kept clean with cleaning tablets. They should be removed

every night before going to sleep, cleaned carefully, and kept in a moist place (usually in a glass of water on the bed stand). As the jawbone shrinks over time due to bone loss, the dentures that fit fine not too long ago get loose. They have to be either, glued in with denture cream or remade every few years. Dentures can also cause discomfort and interfere with tasting and feeling our

food. Some people find dentures embarrassing. If dentures do not fit well, they can interfere with chewing and swallowing. They may also cause burning sensations and sores in the mouth. Fortunately, America’s tooth loss and jaw bone loss crisis can be eliminated with advent of dental implants, now considered the best option for replacing missing teeth. Dental implants have been highly successful, according to a recent research published in the Journal of Oral Implantology.  There is a growing body of compelling clinical evidence supporting dental implants as the most

successful method for replacing missing or compromised teeth. If you are suffering from or embarrassed by loss of one, several, or all of your teeth, dental implants may be the answer you are looking for. I have been placing dental implants (while patients are comfortably asleep under IV sedation) in our community for over a decade with a success ratio of over 99 percent. If you are considering getting a dental implant, feel free to contact my office at 281-332-4700 for a complimentary consultation.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine



Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012



APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


Grittiest Culinary Competition

Best Foot Forward! April showers bring May flowers but until then you can stay dry and put your best foot forward with a pair of Le Chameau boots. Made of 100 percent natural rubber, these French chic Wellies are available at Rebecca & Drew. Available in two styles, the Vierzon Lady ($170) available in variety of colors including green, yellow and turquoise or the Low Boot ($125), which also comes in vermilion red. or 713.522.7500

Rodeo’s Hot Summer Rodeo Houston may be over but, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is cooking up some sizzling summer fun. The new summer festival, benefiting the Rodeo, will be a great and entertaining way to beat the heat. Houston’s Hot Summer Break is July 4-8 at Reliant Center. The five-day music festival features food, shopping and Houston’s top chefs and mixologists stirring up spirits. Guests can also enjoy cooking demonstrations, a beer brewing competition, and a contest searching for Houston’s best cocktail, margarita and martini. For more information, go to

Feeling Better Everyone wants to feel good on the inside and out. After practicing medicine as an OB/GYN for over a decade Dr. Shelena Shel encountered patients who suffered everything from irritability to depression, sleep disturbances and weight gain. Dr. Shel has been fortunate enough to have her patients embrace an integrative approach to treating the whole person, not just the symptoms, to achieve a healthy balance and a happy life full of vitality. Treating the symptoms related to hormone imbalance is very complex but can be done with the use of Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy, (BHRT). BHRT utilizes naturally occurring plant sources that are an exact match to what our body produces on its own to correct hormone imbalance and the symptoms associated with it. According to Dr. Shel, patients begin to feel like themselves again as the hormones begin to work and their symptoms decrease, allowing them to regain their lives! or 281.698.7435

Sprucing Up for Spring Phoebe Howard, known affectionately as Mrs. Howard around the country for her popular decorating advice column in Southern Living, has put her talents into her new book The Joy of Decorating: Southern Style with Mrs. Howard. It’s hard to believe that this stayat-home mom never went to design school and has no formal training. She was born with design in her blood. In fact, when she finally turned to decorating homes, her very first project landed on the cover of House Beautiful! In addition to her design duties, Howard also owns several retail stores in Atlanta, Charlotte, N.C., and Jacksonville, Fla. The Joy of Decorating is available on You can also visit


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Houston is gearing up for the grittiest culinary competition! Kiss My Grits—A Gulf Coast Throw-down is a competition that pits 10 of Houston’s top chefs against one another in a grits showdown. This year’s competition is on Thursday, April 5 at the new hot spot, The Capital at St. Germain downtown. Guests will be able to try all the competing dishes, sip specialty cocktails and more. Chef lineup includes; Chef Randy Rucker of Restaurant Conat and Chef Jonathan Jones of Beaver’s. Proceeds will help raise funds for Young Texans against Cancer. Cost is $100. Price includes food, drinks and entertainment. For more information go to    

Time to Tee Off

The Women’s home presents the fifth annual LPGA Players Invitational with Carol Mann at Champions Gulf Club on Monday, April 9. Players will begin with a noon shotgun start following by an exciting scramble tournament. After, players will mix and mingle with guests and enjoy dinner.  For more information Jessica Jacobe, Janice Hall, Stacy Lewis, Toni Hudgins, Barbara Marshall regarding the tournament or The Women’s Home call Marcia Tapp at 713.328.1975 or

Naomi Judd in Town Award winning entertainer, hepatitis C survivor and former registered nurse Naomi Judd will be the keynote speaker for the PARTNERS 2012 Spring Luncheon on Thursday, April 26, at the River Oaks Country Club. Proceeds from the event benefit programs to support nursing education, research and student services for The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Nursing. During the luncheon, PARTNERS will recognize board members who are nurses or former nurses. To attend the luncheon contact Mandy Kaplon, 713-500-2003; Amanda.Kaplon@uth. or

Supermodel Luncheon The supermodels are heading to Houston! Meet the top supermodels of the 80s in person and learn about the power of image in our country at the I AM WATERS Luncheon on Wednesday, April 25 at River Oaks Country Club. I AM WATERS, founded by former top model and Houston resident Elena Davis, is a non-profit organization that provides spiritual and physical hydration of people in need. With the fundraising luncheon, Davis will expand her efforts and awareness and continue the work of I AM WATERS. A-list supermodels already confirmed include Cheryl Tiegs, Joan Severance, Tara Shannon, along with Tony Spinelli and Jack Scallia. For more information on the luncheon or the foundation, go to or call 281 221-5879.

Dara Rancifer, John Fields, Channel 2 Bill Balleza, Andrew Spicer and Katelyn Ehmry - Clear Lake High School ROTC Color Guard

Navy Gunners Mate 2nd Class Elton Porter - WWII and Korea and Army Major Joseph Ace –Vietnam

Coast Guard Boatswain mate 2nd Class Jeremy Shaffer, Marine Corps Major Rocky Martino - Vietnam, and Air Force Tech Sergeant Karl F. Finger - Iraq

Charlotte Gioannatti and 2012 Volunteer of the Year Marcy Fryday

Rick Clapp and Rebecca Collins - Bay Area Observer Newspaper- 2012 Business of the Year

“Parkie” the PelicanTiffany Kiro

Logan Geeslin and Emcee Nick Geeslin Tiffiny Kiro, Gwen Burwell, Rosebud Caradec and Carol Robinson

Seabrook Association’s Third Pelican Ball The Seabrook Association’s Third Pelican Ball on Saturday, February 4 at Lakewood Yacht Club, was so much fun. One thing I love about this event is that it is so different. After all, it is the only ball in the Bay Area where you can dance with a Pelican. A special highlight of the evening was the wonderful speech by guest speaker Channel Two News Anchor Bill Balleza. Bill, who served in the United States Marine Corp during the Viet Nam war, read a letter that his father, also a United States Marine Corp veteran, sent to him on his 21st birthday when he was in Viet Nam. The letter from Bill’s father and Bill’s speech was so touching and memorable, especially for all us who have had family members who have served in the military. Another highlight was recognizing and honoring the special Military Veterans in attendance: Army Major Joseph Ace –Vietnam, Army First Lieutenant Brian DeMary –Vietnam, Coast Guard Jeremy Shaffer - Galveston, Air Force Tech Sergeant Karl F. Finger – Iraq, Navy Gunners Mate 2nd Class Elton Porter - WWII and Korean War, and Marine Corps Major Rocky Martino Vietnam War. Dara Rancifer, John Fields, Andrew Spicer, and Katelyn Ehmry of the Clear Lake High School ROTC Color Guard presented the colors, and the Pee Wee Bowen Band did a beautiful and touching rendition of the American Trilogy. Rebecca Collins, editor and publisher of the Bay Area Observer Newspaper, received the 2012 Seabrook Association’s Business of the Year, Marcy Fryday received the Citizen of the Year, and Bruce Arunyon received the Volunteer of the Year. “Parkie” the Pelican (Tiffany Kiro) and the Parkettes had fun dancing to the Harlem Shuffle. There was also the unveiling of Seabrook’s new Pelican, “Phil” of Seabrook Island, by Marcy Fryday and Tom Diegelman. Emcee Nick Geeslin did a great job, and the Pee Wee Bowen Band was incredible. They always deliver their own special brand of Rock N Roll magic to the crowd. There was a wonderful silent auction, and the dinner was delicious. Pee Wee Bowen Band

Channel 2 News Anchor Bill Balleza

Chairmen of the Pelican Ball Jenny and Bruce Arunyon and Co-Chairman Patty Kane

Pat Patton and Mary Proudy

i n wheel t i m e By Don Arm strong

Whether toting groceries or kids in the Bay Area, there are other modes of transportation beside the garden variety SUV. Here are a couple of alternatives that may not have crossed your mind. Acura TSX Wagon

The conservative but elegant interior of the TSX.

For those unwilling to join the ranks of SUV ownership, but are looking for all of the attributes that come with one, the Acura TSX Sport Wagon is certainly one to consider. The compact TSX wagon is being marketed as an entry into the luxury segment; a statement that seems to be spot on. The dichotomy, German versus Japanese, has never been more apparent. Although the exterior is somewhat conservative in form, the interior smacks of a European luxocruiser, in both layout and quality of materials. The TSX is powered by either a 201-horsepower 2.4-liter 4-cylinder or the 280-HP V-6, which we tested. Connected to the 5-speed automatic transmission, the later combination proved to be a winner, and the recommended set-up. EPA mileage shows 22 MPG-city and 30-highway. The real surprise is cargo room, which is comparable to many compact SUV’s. With 61-cubic feet of hauling capacity, the TSX Sport Wagon might be the perfect solution for new moms, who’ll appreciate the lower load floor and easy access to baby. The Acura TSX Sport Wagon pricing starts at $31,160.

Nissan Quest

Now wait. Before you turn your nose up, please read on. Yes there are stigmas associated with minivans, but you’ll never drive or ride in a more people-friendly mode of transportation – ever. The Nissan Quest tops the “best minivan made in Japan” category and here’s why: cutting edge design, both inside and out, a powerful 260-horsepower V-6 engine coupled with the only CVT transmission that feels right, handling that is on-par with other high end Nissan vehicles and all the latest, user-friendly electronics to keep driver and passengers entertained on cross-country, summer vacations; kids included. The Nissan Quest was completely redesigned last year, bringing the Bay Area family a sense of luxury like never before. Key features include one-touch power sliding doors, fold-flat 2nd and 3rd row seats with always-available rear storage and an Advanced Climate Control System. The 2012 Nissan Quest is offered in four well-equipped models: S, SV, SL and LE. Seven exterior colors are available, and there are two interior colors in a choice of cloth (S and SV) or leather-appointed (SL and LE) seating. Pricing on the entry-level S model starts at $25,990. Find archived podcasts and listen online to the In Wheel Time radio show at

Listen to In Wheel Time on Houston’s 1560 The Game/Yahoo Sports Radio! Tune in to 1560AM The Game every Saturday morning from 10am to 1pm for Houston’s best car radio show with experts Mike Herzing and Don Armstrong. 18

Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Living My Dream

“The sky looked glorious as the sun rose over the lush green hills and darted into the valley.”

By Emily Feinstein


ne sentence. That’s all it took to change my life. It was April 2007 and I was sitting in my childhood bedroom sorting through papers from my old desk. My mom had asked me to do some organizing while I was home nursing a broken heart. My relationship of three and a half years had just ended and I turned to the comfort of my parents’ arms. Before returning home, I was living with him in a suburb of Dallas and working as a reporter for a community newspaper. I thought I had everything; a career that kept me challenged and a man I planned to marry. Little did I know my world was about to turn upside down. One night I came home after covering a city council meeting to find him sitting on our bed with a look of shame in his eyes. He broke the news that he had cheated on me with an old girlfriend the week before and that he was no longer happy in our relationship. It was the classic it’s not you, it’s me spiel and in seconds, my happy life was shattered. After a few days of picking up the broken pieces, I decided to quit my job and move back to Houston where I had a strong support system and could take my time figuring out my next step. There I was, sitting on the floor of my childhood room when I came across a letter I had written to myself during my senior year in high school. It was an assignment my English teacher had given, instructing the class to write down where we hoped to be in 10 years.


Reading through it caused me to smile for the first time in several weeks. It was more of a sarcastic grin, really. How could I be so naïve? I thought. The content was probably identical to every other girl’s in my class. I hoped I would be married and have at least one child; I hoped to be successful in my career, etc. And here I was, so far from marriage it seemed it would never happen; no children; and I had voluntarily ended my career because I couldn’t face staying in a town where I felt so alone. But wait. There was another goal written in the letter that wasn’t so clichéd. It said, Live in Spain to become fluent in the Spanish language. “What?” I said out loud. “I don’t remember writing this.” I had always wanted to study abroad while I was in school, but I decided to double-major in two different colleges, which meant no idle time to go frolicking around another country. I minored in Spanish because I had been studying the language since the seventh grade and it made sense to continue. As I was contemplating this longforgotten sentence I had jotted down seven years prior to this moment, I had an

Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

epiphany that maybe I could make this dream a reality. Despite my current state of depression and fear that I would never figure out what I wanted to do with my life, I had one positive feeling: that I was free. I was a blank slate and I could paint my life however I wanted — an opportunity that is unheard of for most 24-year-olds who have been trying to prove themselves in the real world since graduating college. I went to my computer, where I proceeded to type Work-study programs in Spain in the Internet search engine. Several results popped up and my sarcastic grin from earlier grew into a genuine smile. One of the first results read: Instituto Hemingway. Since I was fan of the author, I decided to click on the link. The institute was established to help foreigners improve their Spanish speaking skills. It advertised a package complete with Spanish courses, housing, and employment opportunities. It sounded perfect. I immediately sent an email to the director of the institute. Several exchanges later, I was convinced I was supposed to go to Spain.

After running the idea by my parents, who both thought it was a great plan, I booked a one-way flight to Bilbao, Spain. The irony was not lost on me that the funds came from my “wedding account” my mom had been saving since I was a little girl. It’s funny how much we romanticize concepts such as living abroad. Despite the fact that a wonderful adventure awaits you, there are hardships usually hanging in the balance. I didn’t stop once (until I was on the plane jetting out of the United States) to think that going to Spain on my own might be a horrible idea. So many things could go wrong. My plane could crash and sink to the bottom of the ocean. The director of the institute could have been a con artist. There was also the fact that I didn’t know a soul in Spain and no one would be emotionally inclined to help me if I needed it. Sitting in my plane seat, a cold sweat broke out across my face and anxiety ensued. As the drink cart rolled through, the flight attendant offered me complimentary wine (gotta love Air France, where everyone on staff is a sommelier), which I drank to calm my nerves. I had another mini bottle with dinner and minutes later I was in the bathroom vomiting everything back up. You know you’re a mess when you can’t figure out if you got sick because of the altitude, the booze, or sheer anxiety. I like to think it was all of the above. Arriving in Bilbao was unforgettable. I gazed out my window as the plane prepared for landing. It was 9 a.m. and the sky looked glorious as the sun rose over the lush green hills and darted into the valley where the entire town was getting started for a new day. Wow, I thought with a sigh of relief. This is where I’m going to live.

By C apt. Joe Kent

Sailor’s Delight, Fisherman’s Plight Over the past two decades, there has been a shift in weather patterns, especially along the upper Texas Coast. March has long been considered the windiest month of the year; however, April now has that dubious honor. hile sailboat owners enjoy this windy month, fishermen curse the dastardly winds that keep them off the open bays and restricted to protected shorelines and other areas where the wind is not a problem. April is one of the transition months for saltwater fishing. It is a time when the water temperature hits the magic 70-degree mark and fish become active after a long winter of living in cold water and enduring frequent cold fronts. Old timers around the Galveston Bay Complex used to look at San Jacinto Day, April 21, as the beginning of the saltwater fishing season. Prior to the mid-1970s, the day was recognized as a state holiday and schools, along with many businesses in Houston and southern Harris County, would close in honor of the victory at San Jacinto. The result was a lot of people making that first fishing trip of the season.


There were many of those holidays that I would go fishing and cannot recall a single time when the wind kept us from casting a line in the water. For the last 20 years, there have been but a few times on this day that the wind was not gusting to the point that fishing was not a viable option. Stan Blazyk, the weather columnist for the Galveston Daily News, confirmed the changing wind patterns, as April now has supplanted March as the month with the highest average wind speed in Galveston County. March, which was the windiest month, fell to third place, while May jumped into the second spot. This all boils down to the fact that wind is an issue anglers have to deal with during early spring. Now, what this means is that we need to focus on finding protected waters when the wind is gusting. During strong northerly winds, the north shorelines of the bays, lakes, creeks and bayous are where the best

Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Look to creeks, bayous and the south shorelines of the bays for protected water during the strong South/Southeast winds of spring.

water likely will be found. The reverse is true for strong southerly winds that prevail a good portion of the time. From the Texas City Dike to Sylvan Beach, there exist numerous spots that offer excellent springtime fishing during strong southerly winds. One effect of winds from the south to southeast is that they push lots of water into the back bays and marshes. The more easterly the wind, the higher the water levels. When the so-called spring flood tides occur, fish will follow the rising waters into the marshes and up creeks and bayous. Redfish in particular tend to follow the rises for new feeding grounds. Flounder also are noted to follow.

Clear Lake is often a great spot to find fish during the early spring—that is, when the heavy weekend boating traffic is gone. Mud Lake, also known as Lake Pasadena, just to the north of the Harris County Park on NASA Road 1, produces lots of reds and is a well-kept secret among long time anglers who fish the lake. Areas around Taylor Lake and the canals leading up to the numerous marinas and yacht clubs often hold good quality fish. The Clear Creek Channel also referred to as the Kemah-Seabrook Channel has consistently offered a good refuge from the wind and excellent fishing as well. The best area is near the bend, south of the Highway 146 Bridge. During moderate south winds, the Seabrook and Kemah flats can be outstanding for trout. Other areas popular with springtime fishermen include Dickinson Bayou above and below the highway 146 bridge and the old canals that run to the recently demolished power plant at San Leon. Moses Lake and Dollar Reef also offer some excellent protected waters on windy days. The target of early season anglers normally is speckled trout and reds; however, this year, there has been a bumper crop of flounder returning to the bays and ahead of schedule. Seasoned fishermen who have been on the water for years say this is one of the best spring flounder runs on record. The fish arrived early and the action resembles the fall pre-migration when the flat fish begin to move following the first major cold front. While this April may reinforce its reputation as the windiest month, don’t let that stop you from going fishing. There are many good spots and the fish are there, waiting for you.

News & Events

Heald Bank Race Scheduled For April 21-22 akewood Yacht Club Race Committee Chairman Gerhard Wittch has announced that this year’s Heald Bank Race has been scheduled for the weekend of April 21-22. This race, which is open to the public, is held offshore in the Gulf of Mexico starting at the Galveston jetties, marker 11. The race begins on Saturday afternoon and finishes early on Sunday morning. Spinnaker boats will sail a triangle course of approximately 90 nautical miles while the non-spinnaker boats will sail a two legs reaching course of approximately 60 nautical miles. “This should be one of the most fun nights of racing that one can experience offshore south of Galveston,” related Wittich. “It is also a good warm up for the longer distance races held later on in the Gulf such as the new Galveston to Gulfport Race planned for May 25 – 31 and our popular Harvest Moon Regatta coming up October 25 - 28 of this year,” he added. Race Sponsorship Chair Joan Medland-Steuwe reports that Bay Access is the sponsor of the Heald Bank. Bay Access is a not-for-profit organization created to foster amateur racing. Race Committee Co-Chairman Jack Seitzenger also added that racers should know that PHRF certificates are not required for the cruisers class. There is a mandatory Skippers Meeting on Friday, April 20, 7 p.m. in the Chart Room at Lakewood Yacht Club, 2425 NASA Parkway, Seabrook. Trophies for this race will be presented at the Sea Lake Yacht Sales Shoe Regatta Awards Ceremony which will be held the evening of Sunday May 20. To register for the Heald Bank Regatta, please go to Lakewood’s website at www. Or, for questions, call the club’s office at 281-474-2511.

Lakewood Racers Sweep J/105 Mid-Winters t the national J/105 Mid-Winter Championship Regatta held March 9 – 12 on Galveston Bay, Lakewood Yacht Club racers won the top four trophies. Dominating three days of challenging weather conditions in Galveston Bay, Bill Zartler’s J/105 Solaris led the pack in most every race. “Our racing philosophy is to keep the boat moving forward and fast,” explained Zartler. “That is the most important thing.” Zartler also said that his team had the advantage of crewing together for a long time in all kinds of weather, all over the country.

His crew on Friday was Chris Lewis, wife Angie Zartler, Gustavo Escobar, Cynthia Powell and Heidi Kennedy. Kennedy was injured and replaced with Melissa Denman for the rest of the races. Solaris placed first in five of the seven races held on Galveston Bay. Coming in second in the J/105 Championship Regatta was Bill Lakenmacher on Radiance; third was Uzi Ozeri on Infinity, and in fourth place was Alan Bates on Zippity. There were 12 J/105 boat teams from all over the country competing in the Mid-Winters from as far away as Bermuda, New York, and the Chesapeake Bay. “With winds up to 25 knots and rain during the first day of the regatta, it was a survival of the fittest situation,” admitted racer Ozeri. In the past, the J/105 Class Association held the MidWinter Regatta in Key West, but the local J/105 Fleet under the leadership of Lakewood member Bill Lakenmacher, convinced the association to give us a try. “The racers were very happy, in fact tickled pink, with the regatta,” explained Lakenmacher, “so they will be back next year.” For more complete regatta results, please check www.

“Solaris”, Bill Zartler, 1st place (crew pictured: Chris Lewis, Gustavo Escobar, Melissa Denman, Cynthia Powell, and Angie Zartler)

“Radiance”, Bill Lakenmacher, 2nd place.

“Infinity”, Uzi Ozeri, 3rd place.

“Zippity”, Alan Bates, 4th place.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


texas m e d i tat i o n s

By M i c ha el Gos

Looking for Patterns LBJ Grasslands, Texas have very few memories before the age of three. One of the earliest memories I do have, however, is the discovery that I hated cities and loved wild places. I never thought about why I felt that way. When you are four or five years old, that just is not a part of your thought process. As I got older, those feelings intensified. By and large I was an obedient child, but when I was in trouble, it was almost always because of wild places. By the time I was seven or eight, I would head out almost daily into the few acres of woods that remained near my childhood home. It was the only place I felt comfortable. My parents didn’t share that comfort. When I went away to college, weekends were often spent camping at a state park. Even in the Indiana winter, I would take my tent, along with lots of newspaper to place under my sleeping bag, and head out to the wilds. Still, I never questioned why. It was just the way the world was. I guess the first time I really thought about it was when I was in my forties. I had come to Texas to work at the University of Houston. It was my first time living in a large city and I was terribly uncomfortable, all the time. When I took the job, I expected to feel that way so I never gave it much thought. It was only after I had been there awhile that I began to see this as an issue.


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

At U of H I met several people who not only tolerated living in the city—they claimed to love it. That took me by surprise; it was an attitude that was totally foreign

to me. The discovery that there were people who saw things differently made me begin to question for the first time, why I felt the way I did.

Whenever I know I have to go to a city, I research a few potential road trip destinations, just in case the need should arise. I was at a conference in Dallas. After being there a full day, I had to escape. I got into the Jeep and drove to the LBJ Grasslands. I’m not sure why, but I have a driving need to see the entire array of what nature has to offer. I love beaches, hills, open plains, deserts and deep woods; my absolute favorite is the mountains. But this place was different than any of those. Bordering two zones, forest and prairie, the LBJ Grasslands feature rolling hills with lots of open grassy areas comingled with patches of forest. It is not one of the more beautiful places in Texas, but still it felt so much better than Dallas. And frankly, I was excited because this kind of environment was something new to me. It made for a pleasant morning. I had the opportunity to walk along the edge of a small lake, to drive down dirt and gravel roads, and most important, to hear nothing for several hours but birds and the wind. In the early afternoon, I walked a trail through a heavily wooded area and got to thinking once more about why I was so uncomfortable in Dallas yet loved it in this rather unremarkable wild spot. My first thought was that my situation had something to do with the archetype of the garden. In Western art, literature and mythology, the garden represents the Garden of Eden—the world as it was before it was spoiled by man. In our culture, this archetype shows up most powerfully as a trip to the wilderness. Early American literature is full of such references. When things get rough, man retreats to the wilderness where he can get in touch with his true

humanity and experience the world as the creator intended. Most of us are familiar with Thoreau’s Walden but there are countless other examples as well. But as man paves over more and more of the world, those wild places disappear and he is forced to create small, artificial garden spots to allow him a small idea—a remembrance if you will—of the real thing. Some are in city parks, some in backyards. Wherever they appear, gardens have come to symbolize the idea that life was better, more fit for humans in the past. Joseph Campbell claims that we humans all share the same archetypes, regardless of the culture we come from, because we all share the same concerns and insecurities. We know instinctively that we can’t be the kind of humans we were designed to be unless we are in an environment that was designed with us in mind. But those environments are rapidly disappearing. Their replacements, cities, are dehumanizing. We rely on the archetype of the garden in our art and our stories to remind us of what it was like to be human. While that made sense to me, and helped to explain how those who liked cities could deal with the tremendous loss in their lives of the places where we truly belong, it didn’t feel like the entire story. I sensed that, for me anyway, there was more. If all I needed was to be in the original garden, the wilderness, I could pick

just one spot, say the Big Bend region, and stay there. But I don’t. I need to be in all the various types of wild places. And not just to see them, but to study them, to try to learn their secrets. Sunset was closing in and it was time to head back to the Jeep. I came across a small herd of cattle grazing on land leased from the Park Service. A mother cow stood with her baby beneath her; he was stretching out to get at his dinner. I watched as he drank and then as he walked around the hillside, exploring his world, and trying to learn all there is to know about the place he lives. And finally I understood. Like that calf, I am trying to learn all there is to know about the world I was placed in. Not the world of cities—that is man’s creation—but rather, the world that was created for man, the world of the Garden. As I study these places, I am looking for patterns—things that repeat in the different spots I explore, even though those places appear to vary radically in nature. I am convinced those patterns are there. I just need to train myself to see them. I thought about those patterns and why I have such a need to find them—about what they might reveal. Assuming that the universe was created logically, rationally (and I believe it was), those patterns just might give me a tiny glimpse into the great plan behind the design—in other words, into the mind of God. It was dark by the time I got back to the Jeep and it was time to head out for dinner in Denton and then back to Dallas. I had made no progress this day on seeing patterns. But I did feel just a touch more human for having spent time in one of those wild places I’m sure was designed for me to occupy.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


nourishing t h e mind

By D r. Ed Reit man

Standing Up Standing up for yourself isn’t easy. Let me give you some examples:

Jonathan had it. He wasn’t going to take orders or feel taken for granted any more. Nor was he going to continue making his wife’s happiness his mission in life. As a result, he started staying later at work, planned fishing and hunting trips with his buddies and got involved with a young lady at his office. His thought: “I’ve finally gotten a backbone.” I, however, saw his actions as rebellion. In no way was it stand up behavior.


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Nancy waited up for her husband, who came home extraordinarily late. She knew he had been drinking, because he spoke to her in a far more kindly manner than usual and had a silly grin on his face. “I had a couple of drinks and smoked a joint.” “I know”, she responded and hurriedly retreated to a spare bedroom. She thought, “There isn’t going to be any intimacy tonight. It’s time he realizes he can’t treat me the way he does.” I doubt he got that message. Nor do I think that what she did constituted standing up for herself. She said nothing about what she felt, how she perceived his behavior, or why she was upset.

It was the holiday season and Richard and Amy were engaged in the same argument they had last year. Her mother, as usual, was up to her old tricks. They were going to alternate where and when they went to whom. “But her mother got sick on Thanksgiving, so we ‘had to be there’. Then, she had the gall to say that this was also her year for Christmas. My parents? They just claim to understand and go along with everything. But, all year, I hear how ‘Amy’s parents are more important than we are.’ I’m so sick of it that I’m tempted for us to go away during the holidays and say the hell with all of them. I can hear Amy now, ‘Richard, your family doesn’t celebrate the way our family does. They don’t appreciate family the way we do.’ About then, I begin to think I should go away alone and let her deal with her parents. If she won’t let me stand up to them, I can at least stand up for me.”

“All you have to do is be honest, demonstrate a rational self-interest and still show concern for others. Then, let the chips fall where they may because, no matter how others react, you will be standing up for you.” None of these individuals have mastered standing up for themselves. Standing up isn’t determined by what you do to others. It’s not a case of standing up to someone. It’s standing up for yourself. It requires that you, first, know where you stand and what you want. Until you’re clear about those issues, you can’t begin to effectively deal with others, because it’s impossible to support any person, position or decision if you’re not on firm ground. But, once you’re on solid footing, you can begin to stand up for you without necessarily damaging relations you value, or acting in ways that will prove destructive in the future. That means you’ll be able to stand firm, but also have permission to bend; to speak honestly, but without hostility; to have the courage to say what you think and feel, but also the insight to recognize when you’re wrong. It also means that you can have expectations of others without having to control them. Most of all, you’ll be able to demonstrate a rational concern for self, while still recognizing the rights of others. It takes a healthy person to be able to do those things. But, once you can, your feelings of selfsatisfaction and admiration for who you are will grow significantly.

You may think, “It sounds wonderful, but it’s only pie in the sky. How can you ever get there?” My answer: One step at a time. Making mistakes, standing up at the wrong time for the wrong issue, and then learning, “Even though I was wrong, I had the courage to act, or speak up and the world didn’t come to an end. The sun will still rise tomorrow and I’m okay.” It’s then that you’ll be able to go after what you want without imagining, “What will happen if I do this? What will he/she think? How will they react? Will they be mad? Will they leave me?” It will also help you to recognize that you can’t always control or please others. And that, if your behavior is controlled on the basis of how others will react, you’re not standing up for yourself. Let me give you a specific example. For over a month, Josh was irritable, fault-finding and argumentative. He criticized almost everything Andrea did. It was obvious that all was not right in Josh’s life. He needed her care, concern and nurturance, but he felt so insufficient that, on the one hand, he could ill afford to ask for it, lest she not respond. He knew that wouldn’t occur, but his fear persisted. On the other hand, he couldn’t admit, even to himself, how

needy he felt. Meanwhile, Andrea was preoccupied with protecting herself by becoming increasingly more distant, which made Josh feel worse and intensified the conflict. The healthy alternative would have been for her to say, “Josh, I love you and want to be here for you, but your behavior is hurtful and only pushes me away. Please, tell me what’s really bothering you and I’ll try to help. But, know I won’t tolerate your recent actions on a permanent basis.” There is no guarantee his response would be positive. In fact, it’s likely he would become even more angry, because she was right on target and he couldn’t afford for her to see him so clearly. Short-term, she planted the seed that she cared. Long-term, she stood up for both of them. Lastly, you need to accept that, if you didn’t learn to stand up early in life, attempting to do so at a later stage is a difficult task. You’ll be frightened that, if you stand up, others will abandon or reject you and, if you don’t, you’ll hate yourself. Either way, you lose. Thus, despite your fears, you need, once again ask yourself, “What do I want and how can I achieve it without deliberately hurting someone else?” Then resolve to follow your dreams, no matter the reaction of others, while accepting the fact that they may cry, be upset, argue or get angry. That’s their prerogative. You needn’t, in any way, feel guilty or take the blame for their actions. Nor do you have to “fix” them. Their problem is theirs. All you have to do is be honest, demonstrate a rational selfinterest and still show concern for others. Then, let the chips fall where they may because, no matter how others react, you will be standing up for you. To learn more about Dr. Reitman, read more of his articles, or to obtain copies for family or friends, please visit his website,

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


2012 LiveWell Women’s Conference

CHRISTUS St. John Hospital’s LiveWell Women’s Network Offers 2012 LiveWell Women’s Conference and More By Betha Merit Kathryn Stockett, author of “The Help” and Tate Taylor, director/ screenwriter of “The Help.” Registration is available online at or call 281-333-8837 for more information. Inspiration: The LiveWell Women’s Conference is a place for you to enjoy yourself, get educated, and move further down the road towards overall health and wellness. The day includes over 15 fun and factual breakout sessions from which to chose, with topics such as skincare, self-esteem, public speaking, and specific medical related topics. Last year’s conference had the highest attendance for “Below the Belt,” which featured open questions to doctors of gynecology, urology, obstetrics, and proctology. New this year is the Professional Development Track which offers attendance credit hours for select sessions, and may assist fulltime working women in attending with registration costs covered by their employer. riorities: As women, we constantly juggle multiple responsibilities and care for others. Work, family, friends, volunteer jobs, all compete for our attention. But we are smart enough to know that caring for our own well being is the springboard to giving us the energy and health to continue to keep the balls in the air. The LiveWell Women’s Network at CHRISTUS St. John Hospital is a vehicle for providing lifestyle and health support. Encouragement: By providing conferences, health services, and programs that benefit the whole family,


The LiveWell Women’s Network is calling on women “to make your health a priority,” says Nancy Pittman, chief nursing executive and operating officer at CHRISTUS St. John Hospital. Many women put their loved ones ahead of themselves, and the message from CHRISTUS is that it’s okay to take time for yourself, and the LiveWell Women’s Network will help you get there. The 2nd Annual LiveWell Women’s Conference, “It’s All About Women. It’s All About You.” will be held Thursday, May 10 at South Shore Harbour Resort from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Keynote speakers include

Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

“Keynote speakers include Kathryn Stockett, author of ‘The Help’ and Tate Taylor, director/ screenwriter of ‘The Help.’”

(Right) Last year’s luncheon featured keynote speaker, Joan Lunden with Fox 39’s Natalie Bomke.

“The day includes over 15 fun and factual breakout sessions from which to chose, with topics such as skincare, self-esteem, public speaking, and specific medical related topics.”

Market Square is offered between breakout sessions, and features exciting wellness exhibits with free health screenings and a shopping boutique with everything from herbs to handbags. A midday lunch is included, as well as a continental breakfast and afternoon tea. You can help inspire by bringing a friend, or simply enjoy the support of being with like-minded women. However, the

energy to care for ourselves is contagious. Case in point, after interviewing for this article I immediately booked an overdue eye exam and cleared my schedule to be able to attend this conference. Facilitation: Because they know that women often care for their families first and themselves second, CHRISTUS St. John Hospital offers ways to facilitate scheduling for wellness. Screening mammograms are available with extended office hours (early morning and evening) and do not require a physician order. These screenings are conducted by the breast care specialists at St. John’s Breast Imaging Center of Excellence who guide you through the entire process. The Direct Access Testing Program is also available to put “Your Health, In Your Hands, On Your Schedule®.” A large variety of individual wellness tests, wellness testing packages, and get well tests are currently offered at the CHRISTUS St. John Laboratory,

18300 St. John Drive, Nassau Bay. If you suspect you or your child might have strep, mono, or the flu, you can go in for testing and bypass the hours of waiting in a physician’s office or emergency room. You can share the test results with your physician or whomever you choose. Wellness testing packages are offered for men’s or women’s health profile, heart healthy screening, and individual tests such as complete blood count (CBC), comprehensive metabolic screening, diabetes assessment, and liver, kidney, iron, lipid, or thyroid panel, and more. No physician’s orders are needed. Direct access testing is ideal for people wishing to monitor their health status and make more informed decisions about their own health care. CHRISTUS St. John has shown its support and care for women by providing the Bay Area its first of a kind Center for New Life LDRP Units (Labor, Delivery, Recovery, Postpartum), for over 25 years. LDRP units offer a place where every effort is made to keep Mom, Dad and baby together throughout the birthing process to promote bonding and provide a more cohesive experience. Another way that St. John has reached out to women and their families is through the CHRISTUS St. John

Sports Medicine Program. “Participation in youth sports has grown exponentially since we first began our program over 20 years ago, and there are more ‘weekend warriors and warrior women’ than ever before,” says Monica Martinez, director of St. John Sports Medicine. To answer the increasing community need, the program has grown to six locations in the Bay Area, and includes aquatic therapy, children’s physical therapy, speech, occupational, and physical therapy. Additionally, CHRISTUS St. John places athletic trainers in 12 Bay Area high schools and brought the first concussion center to the Greater Houston Area in response to growing awareness of the effects of concussion injury. Founded in 1981 by four Irish nuns, Sisters Mary Bernice O’Keefe, Clare Marie Mulholland, Frances Therese Whooley, and Edwin Berry, CHRISTUS St. John continues to extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ, which is their mission. Through CHRISTUS LiveWell Women’s Network, that mission is spotlighting women’s overall health and well being, recognizing women’s priorities, and providing encouragement, inspiration, and facilitation towards that end.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine




ay Area Houston Magazine’s “Rick O’Clapp” hosted a fun evening at Tabella, Clear Creek Winery’s new restaurant. Guests dined on fantastic food, fine wine and celebrated St. Paddy’s Day in style. Tabella is located in front of the winery at 709 Harris Avenue in Kemah and has all the “ingredients” needed for great dining. The atmosphere is intimate and elegant. Chef Link Livingston’s menu is farm-to-table fresh and can be enjoyed, with or without a holiday celebration. Chef Link comes to Tabella with years of experience and takes great pride in making each dish the best it can be. He is committed to quality, freshness and using the best seasonal ingredients available with a goal to make your meal a culinary delight and keep you coming back for more. His personal touch with preparation and personal service is beyond compare. The menu varies with the season but will always feature standards like steaks, pork chops, lamb, pasta dishes and the catch of the day. There is a unique selection of appetizers, soups, salads and delicious desserts. Of course every meal requires the right wine and Tablella’s wine list features limited edition and hard to find wines augmenting Clear Creek Winery’s locally produced wines. The list is extensive and offers something to complement every appetizer, soup, salad, entrée, and dessert. Make dinner reservations by calling 281-957-9090. Chef Link will be glad to consult with you for private parties and special occasions. The restaurant opens at 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. As you can see from the smiling faces of those pictured, Tabella is a great place to dine with friends or have a romantic dinner for two.

Chef Link Livingston and the Tabella staff.

Kira Blackwell with Houston Technology Center and Rick Clapp.

Annie and Brian Stephens of Reward Realty.

Rick Clapp, realtor Michelle Jacobs and Kathy Scalf.

Casey Montgomery of Envoy Mortgage and wife Erica.

Automotive maven Peter Wink and wife Lisa.


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Technology specialist Kent Kaase, Dr. Judy Richarson and Rick Clapp.

Tuscan Lakes Celebrates New Name, Awesomeville, with Open Homes Tour


t’s not often a community is re-named, but that is precisely what has taken place in Tuscan Lakes, the Bay Area’s premier master-planned community, fittingly re-named Awesomeville based largely on the one word residents use to describe their community. “Tuscan Lakes is awesome,” says resident Rebecca Kimbrell. “I love getting off work and coming home to a community where families are outside spending quality time together.” While it’s not an official name change, signs of Awesomeville can be found in local businesses, on ornamental light poles and other prominent spots in the area. Tuscan Lakes residents also received free Awesomeville stickers for their cars. Tuscan Lakes will celebrate its new name with an Awesomeville Open Homes Tour, April 13-29, with six model homes including a new model from D.R. Horton. Families also can tour model homes from Castlerock Builders, D.R. Horton, Harwood Homes, KB Home, Newmark Homes priced from the $140s to the $400s. A gated community for adults 55+, The Village at Tuscan Lakes, also is open for tour including a model from Pulte Homes. Tuscan Lakes’ gated, custom-home community, Siena, offers homes starting in the $600’s from Harbour Classic Builders, Masterpiece Custom Classics and several other custom builders. Later this summer, Westin Homes will open a model


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

in Tuscan Lakes with homes from the $230s. Besides its collection of outstanding homes and community amenities, Tuscan Lakes is the Bay Area’s only master-planned community with a Lifestyle Director who coordinates a full calendar of fitness programs, family festivals and day excursions. “We love the constant involvement of having a lifestyle director,” notes resident Annette Snow Falks. “We have activities we can participate in everyday or whenever we want.” Kimbrell recalls the community appeal of the area during her first visits to Tuscan Lakes with her husband Raymond. “Every time we visited, we saw families walking around the lake, parents running with a child in a jogging stroller and families riding their bikes together,” she says. “We felt like this was the place for us, a young couple ready to start a family.” Tuscan Lakes residents also enjoy community events, hike-and-bike trails, several lakes and the Cypress Point recreation center with a resort-style swimming complex, splash pad water park and a large play area. 
 Tiffany Pearce, a Tuscan Lakes resident since 2010, adds, “we enjoy family walks around the lake and our daughter loves to feed the ducks that have made the lake their home.” Children in Tuscan Lakes attend outstanding public and private schools, just minutes from the community. Both the Clear Creek and Dickinson Independent

School Districts have earned Recognized status from the Texas Education Agency. Tuscan Lakes also offers a Kiddie Academy onsite childcare learning center with another educational daycare center to open in the coming months. Besides visiting Tuscan Lakes during the Awesomeville Open Homes tour, families can share with others what makes the community “awesome” for the chance to win a $200 gift card. Take a picture of a community event, a fitness class, kids playing ball, fun with neighbors, anything awesome about Tuscan Lakes. E-mail your photos and contact information to photos@ by the entry deadline of April 30. Entries will be posted to a photo gallery on the Tuscan Lakes Facebook page, tuscanlakes, where fans can “like” their favorite photo. The photo with the most “likes” by May 15 will win the $200 gift card. Tuscan Lakes, a Johnson Development Corporation community, is conveniently located in League City, halfway between downtown Houston and Galveston Island, on League City Parkway (SH 96), just two miles east of I-45. Stop by the Tuscan Lakes Information Center, open daily, for community information, maps to the model homes and more. Located at 1531 Louisiana Avenue in League City, the Information Center is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from noon – 5 p.m. For more information, call 281-332-5450 or go to Families also can follow the community on Facebook, www.facebook.coom/ tuscanlakes.

Mary Alys Cherry Receives BAHEP Presidential Award


or only the third time in the 35-year history of the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership, two prestigious awards were presented at the annual Quasar Banquet. The Presidential Award, was presented by BAHEP President Bob Mitchell to Bay Area Citizen Editor Emeritus Mary Alys Cherry “for her passion to the community” as the crowd of 650 cheered.

“The Presidential Award has only been given twice before in BAHEP’s history.” Mitchell told the audience, “After a lengthy career with newspapers all over the country, including the Houston Post, this individual arrived at The Bay Area Citizen in the early 80s and decided to stay. The Presidential Award of the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership is selectively presented to those individuals who serve the community tirelessly and unselfishly, giving so much of themselves on behalf of their fellow citizens. Due to her incomparable work as editor of The Bay Area Citizen, and now as its editor emeritus, and to her support of the many initiatives of BAHEP and service on its Board of Directors, the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership proudly presents to Mary Alys Cherry, this Presidential Award, for her exceptional dedication to the people and businesses of Bay Area Houston.” Cherry received a standing ovation from the crowd while making her way to the stage. As she accepted the award, she said she was “speechless.” Later, she


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added, “What an awesome honor! I am so surprised. I am at a complete loss for words to express my gratitude. It is even more special to me because it came in front of so many friends I’ve worked with over the past 30 years.” Ms. Cherry is a University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill journalism graduate and joined The Citizen in 1981 after holding several executive editing positions on Florida and North Carolina newspapers. Soon after arriving at The Citizen she started her long-running column called Clear Lake Chatter, which focused on Bay Area people, local volunteers and their efforts to make a better community. She serves on the Board of Directors of BAHEP and the Bay Area Houston Transportation Partnership, the Assistance League Advisory Board and is on the Clear Lake Area Chamber’s 50th Anniversary Committee. Over the years Ms. Cherry has been a member of Bay Area Museum Guild, Houston Symphony League Bay Area, the Bay Area Red Cross Advisory Board, the Cancer League, Recherche, Bay Oaks Country Club, South Shore Harbour Country Club, Lakewood Yacht Club, Clear Lake Metropolitan Ballet Guild and Sigma Delta Chi professional journalism society. The Presidential Award has only been given twice before in BAHEP’s history. Previous winners were Frans Gillebaard and the late Dr. Ned Dudney. On the same evening, The Quasar Award was presented by Chairman Robert Ellis to U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, who also received a standing ovation and was recognized for his leadership in economic development by Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


PHIL SANDLIN Precinct 8 Constable

The Real Deal By Betha Merit

Constable Phil Sandlin is already doing the job for which he will be running in the May 29 election for Harris County Precinct 8 Constable. This year marks his 20th year with Precinct 8 where he has served in ever-increasing responsibilities within the department.


andlin was appointed to Constable last June, at the recommendation of Precinct 8 Constable Bill Bailey, after Bailey’s retirement announcement. Jack Morman, Precinct 2 Commissioner, presented that recommendation to the Harris County Commissioner’s Court and Sandlin was approved by a unanimous vote. Sandlin is a people person. He combines the rare quality of running a large organization effectively while seeing the individual person. As Constable, Sandlin is the chief


administrator for a department of 60 people; 46 are law enforcement officers. Sandlin knows every employee at Precinct 8 by name, and also most of their spouses. “If you treat employees well, and provide an atmosphere of fairness in the workplace, then people want to be there,” says Sandlin. Additionally as Constable for Precinct 8, Sandlin is in charge of a civil division, a criminal warrants division, a patrol division, and a toll road division. He oversees an annual budget of $5.7 million. Prior to his job as Constable, Sandlin was chief

Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

“I like serving, and I have a servant’s heart. My career is built upon respecting and protecting people,” deputy for six years, where he was second in command. Before that, he worked his way up from patrol deputy, to patrol sergeant, to lieutenant, and captain. “I have served 15 years in a supervisory position, 10 of which have been in upper management and I know what it takes to run this department and do so effectively,” says Sandlin. Serving in law enforcement was a seed planted early in his life. Sandlin remembers his babysitter’s husband in uniform as a police officer. “I always looked up to him, and respected his job,” says Sandlin. “I like serving, and I have a servant’s heart. My career is built upon respecting and

protecting people,” says Sandlin. Sandlin grew up in southeast Houston and went to Dobie High School (Pasadena I.S.D.). He majored in criminal justice at San Jacinto College, and went on to serve his first two years with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. Sandlin is a family man, active in the Bay Area community. His wife, Nerissa, a flight attendant with Southwest Airlines, also went to Dobie High School. Their 13-year old son, Blake, attends Deer Park Junior High School, and they are expecting a baby son in late May, named Clayton. “I like to travel to new destinations, and with Nerissa’s job as flight attendant we have the opportunity,” says Sandlin. Nashville, Tenn. Is a favorite location for Sandlin, who enjoys country music. He also travels to rodeos in other cities across the U.S. Sandlin’s community involvement activities form a very long list. He volunteers for the calf scramble committees at both the Houston

and Pasadena Livestock Show and Rodeo, and for the rabbit show at the Pasadena Livestock Show and Rodeo. Sandlin and his family are members at South Main Baptist Church in Pasadena, where Sandlin is a parking lot greeter. He serves on the board of directors for the Space Center Rotary Club and chairs the Excellence in Public Service committee. “This committee honors and recognizes local law enforcement officers, firefighters, and EMT/ paramedics for their service to the community throughout the Clear Creek I.S.D. area,” says Sandlin. The Bay Area Alliance for Youth and Families is another organization that Sandlin supports with his time and energy. He serves on the senior advisory counsel for the Alliance, whose mission is to educate the community on substance abuse awareness, causes, and cures. “I like

to work with the community to make it more safe,” says Sandlin. He also speaks at homeowners’ association (HOA) meetings, giving crime prevention tips to the public and answering their questions. For a complete list of Sandlin’s memberships and other information, go to

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine




ward-winning singer/ songwriter, performer, and national recording artist Kelly McGuire is a long-time resident of the Clear Lake area, and has supported the Boys and Girls Harbor for many years. By performing at local events, Kelly has also helped raise money to benefit other charities and organizations such as the Galveston Bay Foundation, Jeanette Williams Foundation, Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo’s CCISD and Friendswood ISD scholarships, American Cancer Society, Texas EquuSearch, and the Marine Mammal Stranding Network, in addition to many other charitable organizations over the years. As part of his Annual New Year’s Eve Bash at the Hilton NASA Clear Lake, Kelly always supports a local charity. Giving back to the community is something Kelly feels very strongly about, and he has been donating to charitable organizations since 1999. The New Year’s Eve Bash silent auction funds were donated to the Boys and Girls Harbor whose mission is “to provide charitable, comprehensive, longterm residential care in a home setting with a family environment for children 5 to 18 years of age who are victims of abuse, neglect, abandonment, or family hardship.” The Harbor touches the lives of over 100 children each year and has cared for over 3,000 children since it first opened. The Harbor was established in 1947 by the Optimist Club of Downtown Houston. This year, Kelly presented a check for $1,000.00 to Richard Gruen, the Boys and Girls Harbor Director of Development, during Kelly McGuire’s


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Songwriter Showcase on February 22 at Butlers Courtyard. When Kelly presented the check, Gruen said, “It means a great deal to all of us at the Harbor to have friends like you who realize how important it is to help children who, through no fault of their own, have become victims of abuse, neglect, or abandonment.” The Harbor is a private nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable organization licensed by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services and receives support only from the private sector, including grants and gifts from foundations, corporations, organizations, and individuals. For more information about the Boys and Girls Harbor, please call 713-688-6262 or email rgruen@ Their website is Kelly, who won the 2008 Texas Music Awards’ Album of the Year for “Boat In Belize,” was also nominated for Producer of the Year for “Boat In Belize” and Entertainer of the Year. He was nominated as Entertainer of the Year in the 2009 Texas Music Awards and most recently has had his fifth CD, “King of the Island,” nominated for Album of the Year in the 2012 Texas Music Awards. He has also won many songwriting awards over the years, including being voted “Songwriter of the Year” by several organizations. Kelly writes all of his own songs and performs throughout the United States, Mexico, Belize, Canada and, most recently, Costa Rica. Kelly’s websites are,, and Kelly can be reached at 281-332-8595 or by email at

*Not pictured: John Thomas

Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce Member Services Division Chair Kat Sanford of Kat Sanford Productions Kat Sanford is the owner and Chief Creative Officer of Kat Sanford Productions, a Clear Lake-based corporate meetings and event management company. If you would like to find out more about Kat’s services or get advice on how to survive as a small business owner, contact Kat at


was first introduced to the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce in 2004. Six months prior to joining the Chamber I launched a home-based business and quickly became a cave dweller, spending most of time in front of a computer calling my friends and family, hoping they would become clients and then introduce me to their friends and family and so on. I quickly realized in order to stay in business, I had to get out of my cave and find a new, productive way to meet other professionals. I hated the idea of “cold calling” and realized the importance of finding a business organization that offered me a way to make meaningful connections with other professionals. Now, eight years later I have the honor of serving in a leadership position as the Member Services Division Chair for 2011-2012 of the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. As a corporate event planner I have seen first-hand how valuable building face-to-face relationships is in today’s fast-paced, technology-driven society. There is a positive trend towards shopping local and volunteering in the community and more and more people are seeking out experiences that fulfill the basic human need to be part of something that matters. The good news is that these are all great ways to foster your business and support the business community as a whole.

Part of the mission of the Clear Lake Area Chamber is to promote business growth and community connections. Through educational workshops, networking events and legislative advocacy the Chamber provides a way for companies to create brand awareness and trust in the business community, plus resources they need to succeed. After Hurricane Ike, the downturn of the US economy and the end of the Space Shuttle program; many professionals, like me, found themselves in transition making career changes and starting new businesses. With much confidence in my experiences and relationships through the Chamber, I launched a new company in 2011. This year we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce with a variety of events planned to celebrate the accomplishments of the Chamber while supporting local business development and our community, such as the Business Expo on May 10. I invite you to visit the Chamber website at for more information about the benefits of Chamber membership, the business of the Chamber, the membership directory and a full list of upcoming events. Or stop by the Chamber office and visit with one of the staff. I look forward to seeing you at a Chamber event soon!

Victoria Ugalde is the newest employee of Bay Area Houston Magazine. She’s a graduate of the University of Houston - Clear Lake where she received her B.A. in Communications and is our new Graphic Design artist. She lives in Crosby and enjoys spending time with her family, nephews, niece, and her two dogs, Valentino and Cassanova. Victoria loves to fish and has spent every Spring Break since she was 11 bass fishing at Lake Sam Rayburn with her dad. Her outgoing personality, love of life, and ability to put a smile on your face makes her a perfect fit here at BAHM.


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Ron Carter Clear Lake - Cadillac Hyundai is pleased to announce the Ron Carter Clear Lake Achievers & Leaders Scholarship on Carter Clear Lake wishes to recognize the hard work and dedication of college-bound area high school seniors. Recipients will be chosen based on academic achievement, character, leadership, service, recommendations and financial need. That’s why Ron Carter Clear Lake is proud to announce the Ron Carter Clear Lake Community Achievers & Leaders Scholarship. Ron Carter Clear Lake will be awarding four college scholarships in the amount of $1000 to deserving applicants. This scholarship is open to high school seniors that reside in Greater Clear Lake and surrounding areas. One outstanding recipient will be selected each month starting in May and ending in August of this year. Ron Carter Clear Lake – Cadillac Hyundai, an automotive retailer in Friendswood, is a leading operator in the Houston automotive retail industry. Ron Carter Clear Lake is a family-owned

and operated business that has grown to be the highest volume Hyundai dealer in the Houston Area and is on track to vastly increase Cadillac sales from the previous year. The company has achieved this success through a strategy that leverages management experience and emphasizes community involvement, high customer satisfaction, and high team member retention. Through its single location, the company sells new and used cars and light trucks; arranges related financing, vehicle service and insurance contracts; provides maintenance and repair services; and sells replacement parts. Visit for more information.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine




he Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority has approved a professional services contract with Jacobs Engineering Group for the rehabilitation of wharves 1 and 2 at Barbours Cut Container Terminal, among a host of matters decided during the Port Commission’s February 28 regular meeting. In his first monthly report, Interim Executive Director Leonard D. Waterworth said January was a strong month. Total tonnage for January 2012 was up 27 percent year-over-year at Port Authority facilities, he said. This was driven by an increase in steel of 235,000 tons, or 97 percent, and growth in container tonnage of 111,000 tons, or eight percent.  “Our core business is running very well,” Waterworth said. Operating revenue for January was $17 million, a $1.6 million or 10 percent increase from prior year, he noted. Cash generated by operations increased by 15 percent over the prior year to $6.1 million for January 2012. This offset January’s capital expenditures and commitments, leaving net funds available for capital projects of $220.4 million, equal to that available on December 31, 2011, according to Waterworth. Growth in operating revenues led to net operating income of $1.6 million, an increase of 165 percent over the prior year, he said. Non-operating receipts of $0.5 million, primarily from federal grant funds and state road projects, added to the $1.6 million net operating income, resulting in net income of $2.1 million to the Port Authority for January, a 200 percent increase over prior year. On behalf of the Port SupPORTers, volunteers who donate their time to Port Authority activities, Dana Blume, Manager, Environmental Affairs, presented the President’s Volunteer Service Award to the Port Commission. Ten Port Authority volunteers, who gave more than 4,000 hours of service last year, received the award, including Nena Armstrong, who was named 2011 Volunteer of the Year by dedicating more than 70 hours of service to Port Authority activities alone. The national award is issued by the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation. Established in 2003, the award is available annually to those who have demonstrated exemplary citizenship through volunteering.  As one of thousands of Certifying Organizations participating in the award program, the


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Port Authority confers it to recognize the outstanding achievements of its volunteers. ENGINEERING & REAL ESTATE The Port Commission approved a professional services contract with Jacobs Engineering Group for the rehabilitation of wharves 1 and 2 at Barbours Cut Container Terminal. The contract involves upgrading the existing wharves to support larger wharf cranes to meet future needs for larger ships serving the region. Jacobs Engineering will assist in the planning and permitting, complete the design and prepare plans and specifications for construction. Additional geotechnical, surveying and environmental tasks may be included in the scope of work. EXECUTIVE  The Port Commission approved adopting the proposed Bylaws of the Port of Houston Authority of Harris County, Texas, following a recommendation by the Governance Task Force. In order to aid the efficient and transparent conduct of Port Authority affairs, on May 24, 2011, the Port Commission formally designated five standing Port Commission task forces, including the Governance Task Force. Its charter calls for the task force to develop and recommend to the Port Commission policies or procedures relating to the governance of the Port Authority. This includes the mandate to develop and recommend to the Port Commission bylaws setting forth rules and procedures for conducting the business of the Port Commission. The bylaws include provisions regarding Port Commission powers, duties and meetings, Port Commission officers, Port Authority contracts, indebtedness, banking, investments, audits and budgets, Port Commissioner indemnification and other matters. OPERATIONS  (Agenda K-6) The Port Commission approved amending Tariff Nos. 8, 14 and 15 to provide for a gate security charge when security is required at certain gates not regularly staffed, effective March 1, 2012. Certain gates at the Turning Basin, Barbours Cut and Bayport terminals are not regularly staffed under the Port Authority’s gate security contract. When these gates require staffing, the Port Authority must order security at the overtime rate set forth in its gate security contract.


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

Bodies Revealed Exhibit

Sunday, April 1 - September 9 (Discovery Pyramid, 1 Hope Blvd., Galveston, TX) - All Day

Easter in the Gardens

Sunday, April 8 (Moody Gardens, 1 Hope Blvd., Galveston, TX) - 12 – 3:30pm

JA-GA Reggae Festival

Friday, April 13 - 15 (Pier 21, 2100 Harborside Dr., Galveston, TX)

Galveston Island Food & Wine Festival Thursday, April 19 - 22 (Downtown, Galveston, TX)

Cabela’s Redfish Series Tournament Saturday, April 21 - 22 (TBD, Galveston, TX)

Conversation and Cocktails With Dan Rather

Friday, April 27 (Davidson Ballroom, 2300 Mechanic, Galveston, TX) - 6 – 7:30pm

Visit for more information on a complete list of events.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


FINANCIAL FOCUS Brought to you by Even with Low Rates, You Can Invest for Income Not long ago, the Federal Reserve (Fed) announced that it plans to keep short-term interest rates near zero until late 2014. The Fed initially pushed rates to that level in 2008, in an effort to stimulate economic growth. Clearly, low interest rates have a wide-ranging impact — but what effect will they have on you, as an individual investor? If you need income from your investments, then the continuation of ultra-low interest rates may be a matter of some concern, particularly if you own certain types of fixed-income investments, such as certificates of deposit. While CDs are insured, offer return of principal at maturity and provide regular interest payments, they are not riskfree. With low interest rates, you risk losing purchasing power. Still, fixed-rate vehicles may well have a place in your portfolio. If you’re even somewhat dependent on your investments for income, you may need to broaden your search. Here are a few ideas to consider: Build a bond ladder. Long-term bonds, by their nature, are more subject to interest rate risk than shorter-term vehicles. In other words, interest rates are more likely to rise during the life span of a longer-term bond — and when rates go up, the prices of existing bonds will fall. To help lower this risk, you may want to build a “ladder” of bonds of varying maturities. Then, if market interest rates are low, you’ll still have your long-term bonds earning higher rates, but if rates rise, you can take advantage of them by reinvesting the proceeds of your maturing short-term bonds. But remember to work with your financial advisor to evaluate whether a bond ladder and the securities held within it are consistent with your investment objectives, risk tolerance and financial circumstances. Dividend-paying stocks. You can find companies that have paid dividends for many consecutive years — and in some cases, increased their dividend payout each year. In 2012, companies listed in the S&P 500 are on track to pay out more than $252 billion in dividends, a record amount, according to data compiled from Standard & Poor’s. (Keep in mind that the S&P 500 is an unmanaged index and is not available for direct investment.) Of course, stock prices will fluctuate in value, and you may receive more or less than your original investment when you sell. Historically, dividend-paying stocks have been less volatile than non-dividend-paying stocks. Be aware, though, that companies can lower or discontinue dividend payments at any time without notice. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Refinance your mortgage. Today’s low rates are good news for borrowers. With tougher standards in place, it may not be as easy to refinance a mortgage as it once was, but if you qualify, you may want to think about refinancing. You may be able to save quite a bit of money on your monthly payments — and lower payments can translate into a greater cash flow. Plus, if you don’t need all the savings, you can put some of the money into an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or another retirement savings vehicles. Ultimately, an extended period of low interest rates is just one more factor to consider in creating and adjusting your investment strategy. Work with your financial advisor to help ensure low rates won’t affect your income needs.


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012



he real estate active season is approaching. Although there have been many changes in the market, our local market is in a good place, and that, combined with low interest rates make now a good time to buy a home. Thanks for the calls and emails I received from readers after my first article. I have posted a couple of questions from Bay Area Houston readers below. Q: Casey, my son recently got married, and he and my daughter-in-law are looking to buy their first home. Is real estate still the “safe” investment it used to be? Do you see more home value depreciation in the future, or is now a good time to buy? -Richard in Clear Lake A: Since you did not say, I will assume they are looking in the 80-250k value price range; this is comfortable for most first-time home buyers. Fortunately, Houston enjoys a relatively strong labor market which helps keep our economy chugging along during these tough economic times. We are seeing promising trends for Bay Area job markets and have seen exciting projections from the Port of Houston, Ellington Field and the oil and gas industries. Because of our

relatively strong economy, middle class housing has seen little depreciation, and has not been subjected to the extreme ups and downs that have been reported nationally. I would also suggest seriously considering a 15 year note with their first mortgage and keeping overall debtto-income ratios below 33%. This is a very effective way to use your mortgage as a shrewd financial tool that quickly builds wealth and ensures they will enjoy their home without unnecessary stress. If they find the right property and make the right mortgage decision their first purchase will not only be a “safe” investment but it could be a move that pays dividends for the rest of their lives. Q: Casey, I am beginning the home buying process and would like to choose you and Envoy as my lender, what is my next step? A: You can apply online at www., or call my office, 281-245-3347 and set up an appointment to meet with me. I like to sit down with all new clients and discuss the process, as well as answer any questions. If you are just beginning, I can also refer you to an excellent real estate agent to help you along the way.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine





hester is a 26 pound, 1 ?-year-old Basenji/Vizsla mix. He won’t last long because he has no faults!  And he has the most beautiful tan eyes and cute ears.  He is housebroken, only chews his toys, and doesn’t try to dig out or jump over fences. He is very trainable, knows “sit” and is working on “stay” and “shake hands”. His breed does not shed, so he’s low maintenance and good with a person who has allergies. He will be okay in an apartment, but would prefer a backyard. Either way he needs daily walks and regular exercise. He is gentle,

playful and likes to sit with his head on your lap. He gets along great with other dogs and children, and probably cats. His current owner is moving and can’t take him. SCP adoptions are held on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Petco on Bay Area Blvd. near Space Center Blvd.  All dogs are heartworm tested, on heartguard, fixed, vaccinated, de-wormed and de-fleaed. All pets are micro chipped. For more information email or visit

Happy Trails to You! After 55 combined years of service to the NASA/Clear Creek/Friendswood Go Texan Subcommittee, we are retiring from this committee to pursue other rodeo endeavors. Thanks to our supporters for the 2011-2012 rodeo year (and all previous Trail Bosses and Ranch Hands), and thanks for the memories. -Emmeline Dodd & Gene Hollier TRAIL BOSSES - $5,000 EACH Barrios Technology *

Service Steel Warehouse Co.

RANCH HANDS - $2,500 EACH ATA Associates City of League City City of Nassau Bay Clear Creek Winery Mark E. Hesse, CPA Kemah Boardwalk Kelly McGuire Entertainment McRee Ford Metro Linen Service Nezat Specialty Services Oceaneering Space Systems One Stop Party Shop PetroTech Consultants, LLC Space Center Automotive Texas Wealth Management, Inc. Top Gun Security & Investigations

(* Denotes Charter Trail Boss since 1999)

Boeing * FastSigns Clear Lake * Norman Frede Chevrolet * Bay Area Houston Magazine Carrabba’s Italian Grill Chemical Process and Production, Inc. Endeavour Marina/Admiral Banquet Room Grand Finale Catering Jacobs Satellite Logistics Group


Bay Area Houston Magazine | APRIL 2012

BATP Names New Directors


ay Area Turning Point, a United Way Affiliate, has named four new directors to its 20122014 board to replace retiring directors Monica Millican and Sally Rankin. The new directors are Sherrie Matula, Mike Beck, Jyric Sims and Rita Armstrong. “Each of these individuals brings talent and experience that will be valuable assets in helping BATP continue to deliver and improve services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault,” said Robert Heselmeyer, Chairman of the Board. Educational consultant Sherrie Matula will serve as the chairperson of the agency’s Fund Development Committee, as well as serve on the Marketing Committee. Jyric Sims, Associate Operating Officer, Ethics and Compliance Officer for Clear Lake Regional Medical Center, will serve on the Board Development and Fund Development Committees. Mike Beck, a Risk Consultant with Brady, Chapman, Holland & Associates, will chair the Human Resources Committee, as well as serve on the Executive and Finance Committees. Rita Armstrong, named by Texas Monthly as a 2011 “Five Star Real Estate Agent,” is a Realtor with Prudential/ Gary Greene. She will serve on the Fund Development and Marketing Committees. The new directors join BATP Board Chairman Robert “Bob” H. Heselmyer, Myrna J. Baker, chairperson of the Board Development Committee, Patricia J. Ingram, chairperson of the Partners

Committee, Marc Havican, Kiley J. Wren, Vice Chair, Treasurer and chairperson of the Finance Committee, Winnifred L. “Susie” Hebert, Eugenia “Genie” A. Bopp, Secretary and Program Committee chair, Russell A. Herring, Facilities Committee chair, Gloria A. Salinas, Marketing Committee chair and Diane Savage, BATP President/CEO. “Each year at BATP is an opportunity to provide pathways to peace for victims of violence and abuse, as well as look ahead and determine strategies to ensure we are a solid resource for years to come,” said Diane Savage, BATP’s President/CEO. “Our 2012 Board of directors brings many skills that will help the organization continue its history of excellence,” she added. If you or someone you know needs a safe place to talk, shelter, or do safety planning to curtail the escalation of violence and abuse, call BATP’s 24hour hotline at 281.286.2525.  All services are confidential and provided without charge.  To explore volunteer opportunities and ways to be a part of solutions to violence, call 281.338.7600.

Lakewood Yacht Club’s “Mosquito Ladies” admire their newly painted mosquito mascot on the club’s grounds. The custom paint job was generously donated by Frank Tamborello, owner of Frank’s Custom Paint & Body Repair in Clear Lake Shores. For more information on custom paint please call their shop at 281.334.4414.

Rebecca Collins, left, received the Seabrook Association’s Business of the Year Award for her newspaper, The Bay Area Observer, at this years Pelican Ball. Bay Area Houston Magazine owner Rick Clapp received the award last year and was the presenter of this years award.

APRIL 2012 | Bay Area Houston Magazine


Bay Area Houston Magazine April 2012  

Bay Area Houston Magazine's April 2012 issue features the 2012 LiveWell Women's Conference presented by Christus St. John Hospital. The conf...

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