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DECEMBER 2019

HELLO HOUSTON! 6TH ANNUAL RED DRESS GALA

Review

ACCESS TAKEN: FOUR DYNAMIC HOUSTON CEOS!

7 TOP HOLIDAY TRADITIONS PLUS HOLIDAY RECIPES

HOW TO COMBAT THE BLUES DURING THE HOLIDAYS

STYLE: FROM OFFICE TO HOLIDAY PARTY FABULOUS


Founder’s Note It’s the most wonderful time of the year - the Holidays and...Giving Season! The best parts of the season bring out the kid in me! I love to take slow drives through the neighborhoods that feature the very best curb appeal during the holidays; you know, the ones that are well known for their holiday “WOW” factor each year. It really brings me joy to be among all of the beautiful holiday trees, to marvel at the colorful lights and ornaments and to hear holiday tunes just about everywhere. I also love to see the smiles on people’s faces because, just like I am, they are inspired by the spirit of the season. It is that same spirit that I speak of that makes the holiday season an amazing time to be a blessing to those in need. While giving back is required all year, to be of service to others is just so much more necessary and fulfilling at the holidays; after all, it is the season of giving. From volunteering to prepare meals, donning your Santa hat and delivering meals and greeting cards to seniors, working at the toy store of a nonprofit organization or adopting a family and providing clothes and food - there are just so many ways to give back during this time of year. So, while you snuggle up alone by a cozy fireplace with a cup of delicious cocoa in hand, spending time with loved ones or attending a festive holiday party, please remember those who may be having a difficult time during the holiday season. Someone you may be able to help is struggling financially or mentally, dealing with the loss of a loved one or not able to purchase gifts for their families/children. Consider spreading some holiday cheer by making a difference in your community. Even the smallest outreach can make a difference in someone else’s world because every bit counts. Experience the true joy of the season by giving back, I promise you will not regret doing so. The smiles on the faces of those who receive will truly warm your heart. In closing, I would like to thank you for all that you do to support Classy Living Society; we couldn’t do what we do without you! Wishing you Happy Holidays and a joyous prosperous New Year!

LaShanda Pitts


Editor’s Note The time just before Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day is my favorite time of the year. The week before Thanksgiving, the anticipation of the approaching holidays has me so excited! As a woman with strong family values, I look forward to spending time with family, but this year, I vow to do something different. I plan to reach out to relatives far away and chat...take the time to get caught up and express my love and appreciation. You see, I am blessed with an awesome family on both sides...and that, my dears, is priceless! I challenge you to spend some time as we go through this holiday season cherishing all that is good in your world. Let’s throw fear, negative energy and thoughts, and anything that doesn’t express or bring us joy out of the window - gone with the wind! As we spend these last few weeks before a shiny new decade arrives, celebrate all that’s joyful and live in perpetual gratefulness this entire season. That is my wish for you. We’ve got a great Holiday issue for you! Nyota Byfield of Frugal Chics Roc tells us how to take our outfits from the office to the holiday party. Enjoy some holiday recipes and while you’re doing that, exercise some of the awesome tips Dr. Glenda Demas gives us in her article on how to avoid stress during the holidays! Plus, we’ll tell you all about what Classy Living Society has been doing out there in the world as we Socialize, Give Back and Inspire! And much, much more... Seasons greetings from all of us here on the Classy Chronicles team; we wish you and your loved ones the very best. As the New Year (2020!) approaches, we pray that you enjoy an abundance of peace, health, happiness, and prosperity. Happy Holidays!

Janine Lattimore


C ONT E N T S

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Protecting our Most Cherished Traditions this Holiday Season:Top 7 Tried & True Holiday Traditions

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Women in Business Feature Entrepreneur Tracy Nicole of Tracy Nicole Clothing

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Love the Life You Live & Live the Life You Love!

Five Fashion Tips to Go from Office to Holiday Party

Holiday Recipes

Maintaining Your Mental Health During the Holidays

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Classy Living Society Atlanta & Houston Enjoy a Night Out - Fedoras & Friends!

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Hello Houston! Classy Living Society’s 6th Annual Red Dress Gala in Houston, Texas!

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“Access Taken” - Classy Living Society Honors Four Powerful Houston CEOs!

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Sock Out Poverty Recipient of the 2019 Classy Living Award!

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Red Dress Gala Weekend: The Houston Society Launch!

Contributors EDITOR IN CHIEF Janine Lattimore CREATIVE DIRECTOR LaShanda Pitts DESIGN Marija Cholkova PHOTOGRAPHY Jason Byrdsell - EnPhocus Photography

Contributing Writers Ellena Balkcom Renee Burwell Nyota Byfield Sheila Emerson Glenda Demas, LPC, CCTP Janine Lattimore


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PROT ECT ING OU R MOST CH E R IS HE D TRADITIONS T H I S HOLIDAY SEASON Top 7 Tried & True Holiday Traditions By Ellena Balkcom


W e all have our favorite holidays, and for many of us, Christmas remains the most wonderful time of the year. Some of my favorite childhood memories are steeped in the deep-rooted family traditions my parents chose to pass along during the holiday season. If we’re not careful, the frantic pace and technology-driven culture of American living stand to threaten some of our most cherished moments, and the holiday traditions that bring us closer are no exception. But I believe we ‘Classy’ ladies still hold these traditions near and dear to our hearts. If your family falls a little short in this area, it’s never too late to start a new tradition and create a lifelong memory. We know traditions like gift wrapping, trimming the tree and visiting relatives will always be popular, but here is a list of the Top 7 Tried & True Holiday Traditions.

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Holiday Movie Marathon Nothing beats cozying up together in holiday PJs to a Hallmark Channel movie marathon. Throw on some of the old classics, such as Christmas Story, How the Grinch Stole Christmas or A Charlie Brown Christmas. There are also plenty of new releases each year, so pop that popcorn and get out the warm blankets for the ultimate holiday- style ‘Netflix and chill’.

Holiday Dessert Bake Off What’s a holiday without a house filled with the aromas of baked goods? Each person in my family had a specialty. Mine was red velvet cupcakes with green frosting and sprinkles. For Mom, it was her famous rum cake. We took pride in attempting to top the previous year. Most importantly, it was all about doing it together. So, put on those aprons and create lasting memories in the kitchen.

Holiday Music Concert or Talent Show Nothing transports you to the heart of the season like your favorite holiday music. If you haven’t already, create a playlist of everyone’s favorite songs and blast it often during the season. Sing together loudly and make your own family concert, karaoke or talent show. Not only will your house be filled with tunes, but it is sure to also be filled with laughter.

Volunteering as a Family We all know that a family that volunteers together, stays together! So, do more of what you do all year long. Grab the family and dedicate some time to serving others and giving back. Some families choose to select a family or angel to adopt. However you choose to volunteer, it is guaranteed that no tradition will ever beat this one.


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Secret Santa or White Elephant Gift Exchange For larger families especially, picking a name anonymously and being able to focus on that one gift can be a fun surprise and economical way to gift family members and close friends. Adding a little humor with gag gifts can also go over well at gatherings.

Christmas Eve Gift Opening Families have all sorts of Christmas Eve traditions. One that my family adopted was that one gift could be opened at the stroke of midnight for adults and before bedtime for children. This would keep the kids’ anxiousness at bay and made for a magical time for parents.

Christmas Lights Stroll Everyone pile in the car, and let’s ride out to sightsee the beautiful displays of Christmas lights you can find in almost any city. Make a production of it. Crank up the Christmas tunes as you stroll or stop for hot chocolate. The family will never forget these special times in the car together.

Tell us some of your favorite holiday traditions! Write us at chronicles@cls-volunteer.org!

Ellena Balkcom is founding partner of Written on Purpose Communications, a boutique agency specializing in helping authors bring their book manuscripts to life and consulting with companies through major organizational change. www.writtenonpurpose.com @WrittenonPurpose

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L OVE THE L IFE YOU L IVE & L IVE THE L IFE YOU L OVE!

By Renee Burwell


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ave you ever wondered why so many of us get caught up in an endless chase of wishing and wanting more? We think that the day we finally have the perfect body or a million dollars or find the man or woman of our dreams is the day we will finally be lovable and acceptable. We set out on life’s course to accomplish things in the world, hoping that when we attain them, we’ll finally be at peace and feel proud of ourselves. Close your eyes and ask yourself, “What am I chasing?” Whatever we desire; whether it’s love, acknowledgment, adoration, intimacy, success or respect; we must first learn to “feed” ourselves differently. It is so easy to take our physical bodies for granted. Without even realizing it, we sometimes act as though we are immortal, ignoring our needs and driving ourselves too hard. It’s easy to forget that our bodies are a delicate “gift” of life. Self-love begins with gratitude. Gratitude is a choice and a state of being that is developed through practice. It grows and evolves when we choose to look at all that we have, rather than dwelling on what we don’t have. Gratitude is a self-generated gift that we can and should give ourselves every day. When we start counting the small blessings in our lives, we automatically open ourselves up to receive more. If we’re willing to love ourselves and be grateful in spite of what others are doing or saying, something miraculous begins to happen in and around us. Learn to love yourself, be grateful of the uniqueness that is solely embodied only by you, and others will follow suit. Self-love is a state of appreciation that flourishes from our actions and our practices. When we act in ways that expand self-love within ourselves, we can accept our weaknesses and our strengths and become more centered in our purpose. Bob Marley said, “Love the life you live. Live the life you love.” These few words embody the true meaning of being present in your own life in the name of self-love.

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Renee Burwell-Billie is the CEO and founder of RC Fitnez Studio, one of Atlanta’s premier dance, fitness and event studios. Renee is licensed in several fitness formats and is an AFAA certified Group Fitness instructor, a Personal Trainer, and creator of her own fitness formats. She resides in Georgia with her husband; with a blended energy of love, they have six children. www.rcfitnezstudio.com @rcfitnezstudio

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HOL IDAY R E CIPES By Janine Lattimore


T he holidays call for lots of festive entertaining! But that means you have to come up with recipes to prepare meats, vegetables, dips, snacks, drinks or desserts‌! You can decide to serve all the butter-laden side dishes in your recipe book, or put together an entire table of ooey gooey desserts...but what if you want to serve a few healthy dishes for your health-conscious guests? Well, we’ve taken some of the guesswork out of holiday dining by offering up a few recipes, with a few healthy ones sprinkled in, to prepare for holiday entertaining.

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Crudité Holiday Wreath Veggie Tray - Delightfully Festive INGREDIENTS:

Perfect Roasted Turkey

Let’s hope there’s enough leftovers for sandwiches the next day!

INGREDIENTS: 1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter 1 lemon, zested and juiced 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves 1 fresh turkey (10 to 12 pounds) Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 1 large bunch fresh thyme 1 whole lemon, halved 1 Spanish onion, quartered 1 head garlic, halved crosswise

DIRECTIONS: 1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Add the zest and juice of the lemon and 1 teaspoon of thyme leaves to the butter mixture. Set aside. 3. Take the giblets out of the turkey and wash the turkey inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pinfeathers and pat the outside dry. Place the turkey in a large roasting pan. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the turkey cavity. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, halved lemon, quartered onion, and the garlic. Brush the outside of the turkey with the butter mixture and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the turkey. 4. Roast the turkey about 2 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and the thigh. Remove the turkey to a cutting board and cover with aluminum foil; let rest for 20 minutes. 5. Slice the turkey and serve.

Crudité: 8 cups broccoli florets 3 cups Brussels sprouts, trimmed 2 cups green beans, trimmed 1 cup sugar snap peas, strings removed ½ bunch curly kale, washed 2 cups cauliflower florets 9 cherry tomatoes Dip: 1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt ½ cup mayonnaise 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried 4 teaspoons white-wine vinegar 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon sugar ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon ground white pepper

DIRECTIONS: 1. To prepare crudité: Put a large pot of water on to boil. Set a large bowl of ice water by the stove. Blanch broccoli for 1 to 2 minutes in the boiling water. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the broccoli to the ice bath to chill. Drain well. Blanch Brussels sprouts, green beans and snap peas in the same way. 2. To prepare dip: Whisk yogurt, mayonnaise, shallot, dill, vinegar, garlic powder, sugar, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Transfer to a serving bowl; set it in the center of a large circular platter or decorative serving board. 3. Arrange kale around the bowl, with the frilly edges on the outside. Top with the broccoli, Brussels sprouts, green beans, snap peas and cauliflower. Garnish with cherry tomatoes. To make ahead: Refrigerate for up to 1 day. http://www.eatingwell.com/recipe/261227/ eatingwell-crudite-vegetable-wreath-with-ranch-dip/

https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/inagarten/perfect-roast-turkey-recipe4-1943576 CLASSY CHRONICLES | The Holiday Edition

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Kale & Cheddar Flatbread INGREDIENTS:

Winter Fruit Salad Colorful, fresh and delicious

INGREDIENTS: 1/2 cup sugar 1 1-inch piece ginger, peeled and thinly sliced 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped out 1 lemon 5 large navel or blood oranges 2 mangoes, peeled and diced 2 firm bananas, peeled and diced 5 kiwis, peeled and diced 12 kumquats, very thinly sliced crosswise, seeds removed 1 cup pomegranate seeds (from 1 pomegranate)

DIRECTIONS: 1. Combine the sugar, 2 cups water, the ginger and vanilla seeds and pod in a saucepan. Use a vegetable peeler to remove wide strips of zest from the lemon and 1 orange, add to the saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes. Refrigerate until cold. 2. Meanwhile, peel the remaining oranges with a paring knife, cutting along the natural curve of the fruit. Hold an orange over a large bowl and cut along both sides of each membrane to free the segments, letting them fall into the bowl. Squeeze each empty membrane to release the juices. Repeat with the remaining oranges. Add the mangoes, bananas, kiwis, kumquats and pomegranate seeds and gently toss. Pour the syrup over the fruit and chill overnight. 3. Before serving, remove the citrus zest, ginger and vanilla pod. Spoon the fruit and syrup into bowls. 4. To remove pomegranate seeds, cut the fruit into quarters, then break apart in a bowl of water. Skim off the pith that floats to the top and drain the seeds

https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ food-network-kitchen/winter-fruit-saladrecipe-1973035 16

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3 tablespoons olive oil, divided, plus more for baking sheet 1 medium onion, thinly sliced 4 cloves garlic, chopped ½ teaspoon kosher salt ½ teaspoon black pepper 1 bunch kale, leaves torn into bite-size pieces 1 pound prepared pizza dough, at room temperature 2 cups grated Cheddar cheese, divided 1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes, drained

DIRECTIONS: 1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add onion, garlic, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add as much kale as will fit and cook, tossing often and adding more kale when there is room, until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl; let cool. 2. Stretch dough into a large oval. Transfer to a lightly oiled baking sheet. Brush dough with remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Top with 1 cup cheese, then tomatoes, kale mixture, and remaining 1 cup cheese. Bake until golden, 18 to 20 minutes, rotating halfway through. https://www.realsimple.com/foodrecipes/browse-all-recipes/kalecheddar-flatbread-recipe


INGREDIENTS: 2 quarts apple cider 2 cinnamon sticks 2 whole allspice berries 2 whole cloves 1 orange, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS:

Mulled Cider

Asimple warm and tasty spiced drink

Place all ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer on the grates of the grill or over a burner. Divide among individual mugs and serve hot. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/bobby-flay/ mulled-cider-recipe-1943275

For the icing: 12 ounces cream cheese room temperature 12 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature 24 ounces powdered sugar 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

DIRECTIONS:

Bake and decorate this beautiful

Red Velvet Cake INGREDIENTS:

For the cake: 12 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar 2 eggs 1 ounce red gel food coloring 2 tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup buttermilk 2 1/4 cups cake flour 1 tablespoon white vinegar 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 (8-inch) cake pans. Set aside. 2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing just until the yolk disappears. 3. In a small bowl whisk together the red food coloring, cocoa, salt and vanilla until blended. Add the cocoa mixture to the creamed butter and sugar mixture. Blend on medium-low until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. 4. Add 1/3 of the buttermilk and blend on low until incorporated. Next add 1/3 of the flour and mix on low. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Repeat by adding 1/2 of the remaining buttermilk and then 1/2 of the remaining cake flour taking care not to over-beat after each addition. Blend on low just until incorporated. Repeat until all the buttermilk and flour are incorporated. 5. In a small cup stir together the vinegar and baking soda. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the vinegar mixture into the cake batter. Do not beat! 6. Divide the batter equally into the three prepared 8-inch cake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. DO NOT OVER BAKE. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn the cakes out and cool completely on a wire rack. To prepare the icing: Combine the cream cheese and butter and beat until blended. Add the sugar and beat until fluffy. And the vanilla and mix on low until smooth and creamy. https://www.savingdessert.com/red-velvet-cake-recipe/

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Janine Lattimore is Editor in Chief for Classy Living Society. Her personal blog, New York Red, shares musings, thoughts, prose on love, life, new beginnings and a little bit of everything else! She’s also the mom of a teenage son who she affectionately calls Sonny. https://cls-volunteer.org/ChroniclesToo/new-york-red/ Instagram: @newyorkredtheblog

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WOM E N I N B US I N ES S FE AT UR E EN T R E PR ENEU R Tracy Nicole of Tracy Nicole Clothing By Sheila Emerson


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T racy Nicole is more than just a fashion designer she’s an author, a mother, an entrepreneur, an activist and a breast cancer survivor. With more than a decade of experience in the fashion industry, Tracy has realized national recognition while successfully maintaining a uniquely expressive brand. I caught up with Tracy to talk with her about her brand, to learn about her business concept and to gather tips to share on being a successful businesswoman.

A BOUT T R AC Y NIC OL E

Tracy has always had a great love for style and while working as an occupational therapist, she decided to take evening classes to study fashion design at night. After completing her studies, she decided it was time to make a career change; to do the very thing she loved. She walked away from her busy occupational therapy position and opened her own retail store. After several years, she decided to develop her own line of clothing and Tracy Nicole Clothing was born. Life was grand, until she received the bad news that she had developed breast cancer. Determined not to let her breast cancer diagnosis stop her upward mobility in business, Tracy decided that her status as a survivor held a glimmer of hope for the women who loved her clothing designs. Living through her survival journey became an inspiration for a new collection of Tracy Nicole Clothing that was created exclusively for breast cancer patients. This unique collection was featured at the 50 Shades of Pink Gala in Atlanta, which was hosted by Dr. Jackie Walters from the hit reality TV show “Married to Medicine Atlanta.”

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Tracy has celebrated many other accolades as a businesswoman in fashion. She and Madison James from radio station 98.5 The Beat have partnered with Porsche Motors for the past three years, showcasing her fabulous designs. Through this partnership, Tracy and Madison James work together to bring awareness to breast cancer and help to provide education and treatment to African-American women affected by breast cancer through Komen Atlanta’s Sisters of Promise Program. As an entrepreneur, Tracy has been highlighted in various local and national publications including Essence, Best Self, Atlanta Voice, Lucky Magazine, Jezebel and Atlanta Style. She takes the time to serve various philanthropic causes including Perfect Peach Inc., a nonprofit she started to teach young girls about selfesteem through her Perfect Peach Workshops. As a writer, Tracy’s first novel, Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?, was the editor’s pick for Jet Magazine and Tracy was tagged as a hot new voice on the writing scene in July of 2010.

Tracy’s other honors include serving as a panelist on the first Young Women’s Leadership Conference for Essence Magazine in Atlanta on ‘‘How to Brand Yourself for Success” and keynote speaker at the 11th Annual Call To Womanhood Conference held in Atlanta. Tracy was listed in the Honor’s Edition of Cambridge Who’s Who for Empowering Executives, Professionals & Entrepreneurs Around the Globe. She served as a Model of Courage for Ford Motor Company and in 2015, was awarded an Emerging Artist Grant by the City of Atlanta. She also received the Creative Style award by the Atlanta Business League. Her unique and timeless pieces have caught the eye of numerous celebrities, and counts as part of her clientele, the likes of Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Terri J. Vaughn, Jasmine Guy and Mary Mary. Tracy Nicole Clothing launched a collection in Belk Stores in the spring of 2017 and that collection has expanded to include men’s and children’s apparel. Recently, Tracy launched a new collection called SIMPLE by Tracy. This new line clearly demonstrates how Tracy has evolved as a designer. SIMPLE lives up to its name; the wearer of these garments can keep it simple, while still making a huge fashion statement. Tracy currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia, with her daughters, Kennedy and Kristian.

T R ACY N I COLE’ S B U SI N E S S CONC EPTS Tracy Nicole Clothing Tracy Nicole Clothing is inspired by the woman juggling it all, work, life and play! It is meant to be classic and versatile while allowing the woman wearing it to be herself-- to let her true nature shine. The philosophy behind the company is to encourage women to embrace themselves by promoting positive self-awareness for all body types. Tracy wants women to see that sexy doesn’t have to mean revealing; sexy is embodied in self-worth and confidence. Tracy Nicole Clothing can be worn by women of various body types and meet various needs. Soft, flowing fabrics are chosen for the collection that compliment as well as appeal to the wearer’s senses. The line gives the consumer buildable ensemble pieces, that marry from season to season, one line to the next.

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SIMPLEbyTracy SIMPLE by Tracy is an extension of Tracy Nicole Clothing and was created to provide women with more than just something to wear. It’s to provide them with an experience! Tracy wanted to create a collection where everything is SIMPLE and comfortable yet sexy and interchangeable -- the very thing every woman wants. Keeping it SIMPLE and easy. Every style comes in three SIMPLE colors: Black (elegance, power and strength), Grey (timeless, cool and balanced) and Taupe (neutral, warm and relaxing). I believe if you feel good and look good it makes you happy and healthier! We focus so much on outer beauty that we sometimes forget about the inner beauty.

Advice for Women in Business Focus on what you want to do. Create a plan and follow it, tweaking when necessary as you go. Never lose your vision and remember that you can’t share it with everyone. You are the only one who was blessed with the vision; never let anyone cause you to question your vision. Each time you fall get up faster. There is no such thing as failure. Your progress is a reflection of what you believe is possible. If no one is telling you your idea is crazy … it’s not big enough. God’s plan is far greater than you can ever imagine.

Here’s how you can connect with Tracy Nicole: Address: 75 Bennett St NW Suite N-1 Atlanta GA 30309 Website: Tracynicoleclothing.com Phone: 678.660.8797 Email: tracy@tracy-nicole.com Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tracynicoleclothing Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tracynicoleclothing Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/tracynicoleatl Other: Beneaththepetals.blogspot.com

Sheila Emerson is the mother of two wonderful children. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Middle Grade Education, has completed her Master’s Degree in Education, with honors and is presently on her journey to earning her Doctorate Degree in Education and will become Dr. Sheila Emerson! She is entering her 19th year in the teaching profession and enjoys teaching and motivating students in math.

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FIVE FASHION TIPS TO GO FROM OF FIC E TO HOL IDAY PARTY By Nyota Byfield


O ne of the great things about this time of year is attending holiday gatherings with friends and co-workers. But when these events take place at the end of the workday, deciding what to wear can be a challenge, especially when there’s no time to go home to change. Here are five tips to help you in your quest to transition from your office look to the festive office holiday party attire:

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Know what type of event you’re going to...gathering at a restaurant/home, cocktail party, or gala? Each require event-appropriate dress.

Is it a themed event? For example, were you asked to wear an “ugly” holiday sweater? If so, that can make it super easy if you choose to go with the theme. If you don’t have the item in your closet, shop online and have it delivered!

4 Adding or changing your accessories works wonders. What do I mean? If you’re wearing a dress with tights and boots, add pearls (necklace, bracelet, earrings) and you’ve added sophistication; or go with funky jewelry for a bold look. Bold belts are amazing too!! Add a pashmina scarf with a pop of color to a simple turtleneck. If flat shoes accompanied your day outfit, but you want to be dressier for the evening, change into heels! You can always change back into your flats as the fun evening wears on!

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Add a blazer to your work day outfit to jazz it up a bit or wear a festive shimmery sweater or top to celebrate the season.

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Lose the blazer you’ve worn all day if you want a more casual look and opt for a sleeveless top instead.

Hopefully these tips will help make the transition from day to evening a snap! Who has time to spend combing through a closet full of clothes or wondering what to wear this holiday season? You’ve got celebrating to do!

Nyota Byfield is the owner of Frugal Chics Roc, a women’s online boutique. Nyota has 20+ years experience in corporate America and holds a B.A. in Political Science from New York University and an M.B.A in Organization Management from Georgia State University. She enjoys reading, working out, volunteering, traveling, all things fashion, and spending time with her loved ones both furry and human! IG: Instagram/frugalchicsrocc www.frugalchicsroc.com

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M A I NTA I N IN G YO U R M E N TA L H E ALT H D UR I NG T H E H OLIDAY S By Glenda Demas, LPC, CCTP


D

uring the holiday season unwelcomed guests, thoughts, feelings and emotions often begin to surface; most of which you have successfully managed to either suppress, or avoid all year by staying busy. But during the holidays, family conflict, financial burdens, increased work obligations, lack of positive relationships, and unresolved grief are a few contributors to holiday stress, which can lead to increased anxiety or depression during that time. Psychology Today reported in 2018 that 38% of individuals surveyed stated their stress level increased during the holiday season. Participants listed their top stressors as lack of time, lack of money, feelings of loneliness, commercialism, pressures of gift-giving, and family gatherings. Surprisingly, 56 percent of respondents reported they experienced the most amount of stress due to work obligations. With a few effective and practical tips, you can minimize the most common stressors, and enjoy the holiday season. Here are seven suggested tips to alleviate some of the stress that can lead to anxiety and depression during this time:

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Take a Breather.

Take time for yours elf with no distractions. Find something that reduces stress, and allows you to clear your mind, and restore your ability to remain calm. Doing so will allow you to regroup and accomplish your tasks.

A few options include: Getting a Massage Reading a Book Exercising Meditating

Plan Ahead.

Set aside days for shopping, baking, decorating, visiting, and any other activities that will require you to be fully present. Be sure to line up any help from others that you may need in advance. If faced with work-related tasks, develop a daily to-do list to keep your day-to-day obligations in order.

Stick to a budget.

Before heading to the grocery store for that elaborate holiday meal or Black Friday Christmas Shopping, decide how much money you can afford to spend. STICK TO YOUR BUDGET.

Learn to Say No.

Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and depressed. Family and friends will understand if you cannot participate in every activity - physically or financially. It’s ok to not join in on extra group projects at work, or working later than usual. Protect your sanity during this time by exercising assertiveness and creating boundaries. It’s ok to say NO!

Set Aside Differences.

We all have family members and relatives whose energy we can just do without. Work to accept them for who they are by removing expectations and your personal desire to prove to them that they were wrong. Co-workers should be held to the same account. Disagreements within the workplace can definitely make the environment much more stressful. Agree to disagree. Chances are they are experiencing the same amount of stress and anxiety that you are during this season.

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Acknowledge your feelings. It’s OK to NOT be OK. If you have re c e n t l y e x p e r i e n c e d f e e l i n g overwhelmed at work, the loss of a loved one or the loss of a relationship of any kind, you will feel a flood of unresolved thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Allow yourself to experience those emotions. Don’t attempt to mask what you feel during this time; it won’t help. Acknowledging and accepting the pain will promote long-term growth.

Seek professional help if you Need it. During this time, if you experience sadness, inability to sleep, decrease in productivity, irritability, hopelessness, and you are unable to focus on tasks for longer periods than usual, it would be a great idea to talk to your doctor or a mental health professional.

Don’t allow the holidays to become the time of year you dread. Instead, take preventative measures to ensure that you are able to manage your triggers, maintain control of personal and financial demands, eliminate meltdowns, and combat depression. A little planning and positive reinforcement can help you experience joy and peace during this Holiday Season. And Remember “ Together We Can.”

Glenda Demas, MA, LPC, CCTP is the Founder of Pearls of Change Wellness, LLC Graduated with a M.A. in Counseling with a focus in Clinical Trauma from Prairie View A&M. A Member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., American Counseling Association, American Mental Health Association, and currently presides as a Board of Director for the National Alliance on Mental Illness Greater Houston (NAMI). For more information or to Schedule Services: www.pearlsofchange.com

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CLA S S Y LI VING S O CI ET Y AT LANTA A ND H OUS TON E N JOY A N IG HT OU T Fedoras & Friends! By Janine Lattimore


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e couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate our Atlanta Oh So Classy! Classy Living Society members than to host a social hour right smack dab in the middle of the week! Fedoras & Friends, a midweek get together for CLS members who hold a special toptier level of membership, was held on the rooftop of the Ponce City Market in Atlanta, Georgia on Wednesday, November 6, 2019.

Once the Sears, Roebuck & Company building, Ponce City Market is a muchloved restored structure of one of the city’s vital landmarks located in the burgeoning Old Fourth Ward district. The host location was 9 Mile Station, a sleek indoor-outdoor space offering sweeping unobstructed views of the Atlanta’s Skyline. The outdoor space of 9 Mile Station was where the ladies convened to enjoy the view and each other; and since it was a chilly evening - the warm and inviting firepits. Ladies with hattitudes mixed and mingled, greeting new members and enjoying great food and cocktails, and of course, sporting their fly, fresh fedoras!


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The following week, CLS Houston Society members got in on the fun too, right there in their town. On Wednesday, November 13, 2019, sporting their flashy fedoras, they enjoyed each other’s company along with good food and wine! The host location was Hearsay Gastro Lounge, located in a turn-of-the-century building near Market Square in Houston, it is a gastro-lounge known for creating a dining experience that is simply chic antique. Walk through the doors of Hearsay and be transported to an undefined era in Houston’s history. As always, a giveback initiative was attached to the event. Members donated over 500 cans of veggies, which will be donated to the Veteran’s Administration to serve at their Thanksgiving dinner. Greens, yams, green beans, corn...you name it! 500 cans...how’s that for adding a feather in our cap (pun intended)! On another note...I’m sure you’re wondering... what is the Oh So Classy top tier membership of CLS? Well, we are glad you asked! Oh So Classy members enjoy endless rewards, including, among other things, access to all fabulous member events and sisterhood bonding outings, as well as exclusive Oh So Classy perks! CLS offers a variety of membership tiers besides Oh So Classy though -- the premise is: pay less membership fees--volunteer fewer hours--receive fewer benefits; pay more membership fees--volunteer more hours--receive more benefits! The choice is yours - depending on your desired level of involvement. Membership has its privileges; join us today! Visit our website and click on the “Become a Member” button and view our membership levels. Choose the one that is right for you and become a member today!

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H E LL O HOU STON! C LA S S Y LIVING SOC IETY’ S 6 T H ANNUAL R ED DRESS GAL A IN HOU STON, TEXAS!


A sea of 200 beautiful ladies in red dresses converged upon the Le Meridien Downtown Houston Hotel on Sunday, October 13, 2019 for Classy Living Society’s 6th Annual Red Dress Gala and CLS’s launch in Houston, Texas! What an affair! The energy in the Grand Ballroom on the hotel’s 22nd floor was electric and positive, festive and magical! VIP guests arrived early for a meet and greet reception in the gallery outside of the Ballroom, where the bubbly was flowing and a harpist played tranquil melodies. The VIPs had the opportunity to snap a few photos on the beautiful step & repeat which was covered with a bevy of red roses!

Inside the ballroom, Houston R&B artists Prodigy and Jazz sang a few songs, providing a soulful backdrop to the early beginnings of the event. Excitement and anticipation was in the air! And oh, the decor! Simple, classy, beautiful, perfect. Laik Experiences does it again - designer of luxurious decor. Marble plates, hot pink napkins with festive customized napkin rings adorned with the words “RDG 2019”, drinking glasses were clipped with affirmation cards (“You Go Girl”, “She Ready”, “You Rock”...) and a vase of red, pink, and purple roses as a centerpiece. VIP tables were resplendent in shades of off white with rose gold accessories and utensils. Then the Gala began...

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Spoken Word by Kathleen. Powerful is the best way to describe the message celebrating who and what phenomenal women are. Via video on the big screen, Kathleen flowed through “#WeLEADPhenomenally”, a spoken word video that is dedicated to empowering phenomenal women of color “who have accomplished with or without resources, overcoming stigma, breaking through glass ceilings, cultural disparities and at times overwhelmed, battling depression or anxiety.” The video was befitting in its content, as the theme of the 6th Annual Red Dress Gala was Access Taken… With the theme Access Taken, CLS honored and celebrated women who are pioneers in their fields, who have succeeded in the face of adversity and who have defied the odds and used past failures to propel them to amazing successes! The women saluted are bold, fierce, passionate, and strong… #WeLEADPhenomenally The Gala was hosted by hilarious Atlanta Comedian Lady Q who introduced Singer/ Songwriter Jessica Forrest, who sang a rousing rendition of “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” Then, CLS Founder LaShanda Pitts welcomed everyone and shared the honor of receiving a letter from the Mayor of Houston, the Honorable Sylvester Turner. In short, through this correspondence, the Mayor and City Council celebrated Classy Living Society and its Red Dress Gala, welcomed all attendees of the Gala, recognized those honored and expressed gratitude for the commitment of CLS and its impact on the Houston community and the community at large. At the end of LaShanda’s speech, she introduced a Second Line Band! They played “When The Saints Go Marching In” and walked throughout the crowd playing, and it was one of many times the ladies were on their feet dancing, including during the music segments featuring Prodigy and Jazz! Speaking of music, CLS paid homage to hometown star, Beyonce by playing many of her hits as theme songs! Music was provided by Houston DJ Tay Powers on the one’s and two’s! Ladies, now let’s get in formation, ‘cause I slay… The Selfie Challenge was also a big hit! It was a fun and exciting icebreaker. Each attendee was challenged to get out of their seats and take selfies with as many other women in the room as they could! It was amazing! 36

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The honors were many! Crystal Danzey, a member of CLS’s Events Team received the Founder’s Award for her dedication and excellence as a valued member of the team! Much deserved! CLS Founding Sister Tarrah Gales Smith introduced each honored Access Taken guest/keynote speaker. These four amazing Houston area women CEOs received the Access Taken award, which celebrates the Woman CEO who has literally taken her own access in the business arena. She is inspiring the future Women CEOs - the young girls and women who look up to her as a model of self-confidence, creativity and innovation. Access Taken Award recipients included: Khaliah Guillory, Founder and CEO of the Nap Bar Dr. Bridgette Jenkins, President and CEO of Houston Chapter of Black Nurses Rock Kim Roxie, CEO and Founder of Lamik Beauty Tyla-Simone Crayton, 16-year-old CEO of Sienna Sauce Each took the stage and spoke about the struggles, triumphs, lessons, roadblocks and successes involved in their entrepreneurial journeys. Tyla-Simone Crayton, a 16-yearold entrepreneur spoke about “Access Given” - that she feels honored to have been given access to become who she is today. The voice of our future! Khaliah Guillory, a spirited motivational speaker, truly electrified the energy in the room; sharing 10 nuggets of knowledge that she learned along her journey as an entrepreneur. Dr. Bridgette Jenkins, a/k/a Dr. B, and Kim Roxie each shared a story of overcoming adversities that would have caused most to lose their way and give up... yet here they are - phenomenal women who cannot be stopped! Read about these remarkable women and girls in their features in this edition of the Classy Chronicles!


Additional honors included the presentation of the Keep Going Award to three Houston area women who are shining their light in a big way! The Keep Going Award is designed to recognize and give accolades to those who represent excellence in their tireless efforts in giving back to the community and otherwise providing inspiration to succeed. Recipients of this award are chosen from those highlighted in the Chronicles Too! CLS believes in providing support to these individuals - to let them know we are behind them all the way and to encourage them to #keepgoing. Keep Going Award honorees include: Dr. Glenda Demas, Pearls of Change, LLC Carissa Stephens, She’s ChaRISSmatic.com Bri Braggs, Fertile Alchemy Last but not least, Classy Living Society’s coveted Classy Living Award was presented to Sock Out Poverty, a nonprofit organization which is the brainchild of 15-year-old Princess Jackson with her mother, Phyllis Burton at the helm! There was not a dry eye in the place as Princess Jackson spoke; she was overcome with gratitude and her energy filled the room! Attendees of the 6th Annual Red Dress Gala donated pairs of socks that were given to Sock Out Poverty to further their efforts in the community. Additional donations were given, and are still open for giving; follow the link to donate: https://www.sockoutpoverty.org/donate Congratulations are also in order for Volunteer of the Year! The Founding Sisters of CLS presented this honor to Sabrena Thomas and for her dedication to the organization and service to the community, Sabrena was gifted with a travel gift card toward travel sponsored by CLS Travels. Read more about Sabrena in her spotlight article in our next edition! It was a beautiful day of smiles and laughter, love, hugs, sisterhood bonding, magic, music, dancing, luxurious decor, great food and red dresses! Like-minded women networked and mingled and new friendships and alliances were forged. Thank you, Houston for your gracious hospitality and a Red Dress Gala we all will never forget!

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“ACCESS TAKEN” Classy Living Society Honors Four Powerful Houston CEOs!


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hese four fabulous CEOs were our special guests and were honored with the Access Taken Award! The Access Taken award, which celebrates the Woman CEO who has literally taken her own access in the business arena. She is inspiring the future Women CEOs - the young girls and women who look up to her as a model of self-confidence, creativity and innovation. Read on as we serve up the facts on each one!

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Kim Roxie

LAMIK Beauty Founder and CEO

Kim Roxie has been at the forefront of celebrating the beauty of multicultural women since she founded LAMIK in 2004, while still a college student in Atlanta. She didn’t set out to become an entrepreneur at 21 but was inspired to create her own line when she researched the ingredients in the brands available to her customers while working at a cosmetics counter part-time while in school. Dismayed by the unhealthy ingredients she uncovered, Kim decided to become the change she was looking for and founded LAMIK, an environmentally conscious cosmetics line that would not only look good on women of color but also be good for them. By naming her brand LAMIK, which means Love And Makeup in Kindness, Kim signaled that her brand was about more than makeup. She believes in promoting a deeper meaning of beauty, that it emanates from the inside out.

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The creative mind behind Nap Bar is Khaliah O. Guillory. As a previous C-level executive, she knows a thing or two about handling stress.

Khaliah Guillory

FOUNDER AND CEO, NAP BAR

Nap Bar, the first hospital-grade napping experience in Texas, offers communities and companies onsite and in-suite rest services to help reduce sleep deprivation and increase productivity. Nap Bar’s mission is to turn sustainable rest into sustainable productivity for the health-conscious professionals, entrepreneurs, stay-at-home parents and travelers. Based on Khaliah’s philanthropy work in the community, Mayor Sylvester Turner declared October 29 as Khaliah Guillory Day.

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Dr. Bridgette Jenkins

PRESIDENT AND CEO, HOUSTON CHAPTER OF BLACK NURSES ROCK

Dr. Bridgette has over 20 years of nursing and healthcare experience and has worked in many different areas of nursing throughout her career. She is currently a Professor at Houston Baptist University. She is the author of three books and will be releasing her fourth book this fall. She is also a radio show host; her show, Bounce Back Monday’s with Dr. B can be heard on gospelradionation.com & on Facebook Live each Monday from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. She is the CEO & President of the Houston Chapter of Black Nurses Rock and is committed to changing the lives of the citizens in the Houston area and surrounding communities through service and education. She has been an Ambassador and Instructor with the American Heart Association since 2006. She is a trained speaker and certified instructor with the capabilities of teaching life saving courses to healthcare professionals and to the community.

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Tyla-Simone Crayton CEO, SIENNA SAUCE

Tyla-Simone Crayton is the fifteen-year-old CEO of a Houston, Texas based company called Sienna Sauce in Houston, Texas. The young foodie relocated from the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, New York to the Sienna Plantation area of Texas, hence the brand name Sienna Sauce. In an effort to recreate a flavor of sauce she missed from back home, she experimented and stirred up some flavors that she enjoyed far superior! Tyla-Simone has always had a creative spirit and decided that selling sauce would be a great idea; and in the spring of 2017, she launched Sienna Sauce from her home kitchen. The company currently has grown in flavors. Since launching, Sienna Sauce has already been recognized for its taste and quality. The brand participated, and won, “Best Sauce” in the 2018 and 2019 Sauce-A-Holic Fest, competing against 15 competitive brands! The young CEO says the sauce is multi-purpose, and can be used on anything! It’s great on meat, fish and vegetables. Tyla-Simone is an honor student at Ridge Point High School receiving awards in academic excellence and critical thinking. Outside of the classroom she plays basketball, is a member of student council, serves as a board member of the Black History Club, a member of the American Sign Language club (ASL), and she is a community volunteer.

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10

S OC K OUT POVERTY Recipient of the 2019 Classy Living Award


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ach year, the Red Dress Gala serves to honor and applaud the extraordinary work of organizations we are passionate about. This year we honored Sock Out Poverty with the 2019 Classy Living Award!

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Sock Out Poverty

RECIPIENT OF THE 2019 CLASSY LIVING AWARD

Sock Out Poverty is a nonprofit organization that was birthed by fifteen-year-old actress and model, Princess Jackson. Because of her passion to give back to the community and her fondness for socks, Sock Out Poverty was created. Princess gives the most needed, yet overlooked, item to the less fortunate, and that’s a new pair of socks. Her goal is to reduce poverty and provide socks for the less fortunate, therefore Socking Out Poverty One Step At A Time! To date, Sock Out Poverty, Inc. has given out more than 10,000 pairs of new socks in the Houston, Beaumont, San Antonio, Dallas, Atlanta and California areas. Our goal is to go global and “Sock Out Poverty” all over the world. Sock Out Poverty, Inc. has received donations from national businesses including Walmart, Sam’s Club, The Floyd Mayweather Jr Foundation, and comedian and TV host Steve Harvey. Congratulations, Sock Out Poverty! We applaud and celebrate you for your tremendous contribution to society! For more information on Sock Out Poverty, including donation information, visit their website: https://www.sockoutpoverty.org/

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R ED DR E S S GAL A W EE K EN D The Houston Society Launch!


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ou’ve read about it and you’ve seen the beautiful photos of the 6th Annual Red Dress Gala in Houston, Texas on Sunday, October 13, 2019. But did you know there was an entire weekend of fun and philanthropic events surrounding this grand occasion? Access Taken was the theme of the weekend, as CLS celebrated Houston area women and girl rockstar CEOs who are breaking down barriers as pioneers in their respective fields and in building their businesses, brands and nonprofit organizations. In its quest to strengthen its ties to the City of Houston, CLS debuted its annual fundraiser with a special weekender package. Attendees who indulged in this package participated in a number of planned activities leading up to the Sunday afternoon Gala. The adventures of the weekend opened on Friday afternoon, when the ladies picked up a special gift; an Access Taken keepsake bag, adorably personalized with each attendee’s name and containing a hot pink Access Taken tank top and printed weekend itinerary. And with that... the weekend began! Friday night Houston lights! It was an unseasonably chilly evening, but the ladies were warmed by the electric energy of a party! The Tank Tops, Jeans & Sandals Rooftop Party was in full effect at Lawless Spirits & Kitchen. Located in the historic Rice Hotel, Lawless is Houston’s most en vogue establishment, boasting a rooftop bar that provides the best show of the Houston sunset in the evening. The ladies munched on delectable bites, sipped cocktails, greeted each other with smiles all around and mixed and mingled. It was the perfect groundbreaker for the remaining weekend activities to come

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Up early on Saturday morning, CLS members and guests joined together in a giveback mission to benefit Meals on Wheels of Greater Houston. The ladies created handcrafted greeting cards for homebound seniors who receive the organization’s delivery services. This Texas Meals on Wheels program provides homedelivered meals to over 4,400 homebound seniors and disabled adults in five counties – Harris, Galveston, Montgomery, Liberty and Chambers. The program also delivers weekend meals and a week’s worth of breakfast to over 1,100 of the area’s most frail and isolated clients. This nutritional support helps people stay independent and in their own homes. Since the 1970’s, Meals on Wheels has enlisted the help of volunteers to create greeting cards to deliver to their clients. For some recipients, the card given to them by Meals on Wheels may be the only birthday or holiday greeting they receive. CLS volunteers created cards depicting autumn scenes, Thanksgiving blessings and December holiday cheer with construction paper, metallic and colored markers and scrapbooking materials. There was a stunning array of cards on display at the conclusion of the morning’s duties. Those ladies are creative! It was a nice thought to know that each of these cards will put a smile on the face of a senior upon delivery of their Meals on Wheels service. Seasons greetings!

Festive! Beautiful! Charming! Enchanting! The Pink and Purple Wellness Brunch on Saturday afternoon was a wonderful experience at The Grove restaurant, the definitive see-and-be-seen culinary hotspot in Houston’s urban core. The brunch was held in a sunny room with wall-to-wall/ ceiling-to-floor windows! As the ladies entered, they were met with huge pink, purple, confetti and gold balloons with “Classy Living Society” and “Hello Houston” emblazoned on them. The table decor was stunning! Pink tablecloths and rose gold utensils. Purple leather handcrafted “vases” containing begonia plants. “Grass” placemats, a topiary ball of greenery and roses as a centerpiece and a pink napkin folded into a rosette. Each attendee was gifted with a keepsake bookmark titled “How to Grow” and a card with a “Wellness Pledge” printed on it. The ladies wore pink or purple dresses pink to symbolize harmony and purple to symbolize royalty. CLS Atlanta member Tara Lambert said it was a “beautiful surprise!” She enjoyed “everything from the restaurant location, the decor and food. Not to mention how flawless our sisters looked in their pink or purple. Harmony and royalty!” An informative panel discussion related to women’s health ensued - featuring Atlanta Comedian Lady Q, entrepreneur and CEO of Frugal Chics Roc, Nyota Byfield, and Dr. Glenda Demas, Licensed Professional Counselor and owner of Pearls of Change Wellness, LLC. There was plenty of informative dialogue about health and wellness related to mind, body and spirit. In the true tradition of fabulous CLS events, the Wellness Brunch was definitely among the most beautiful and elegant events of them all!

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CLS Atlanta member Knitra Norwood had this to say about the brunch: “The Pink and Purple Wellness Brunch was a remarkable event. It was amazingly beautiful to see all of the CLS sisters in their pink and purple dresses commanding their presence, having fun, taking pictures and networking. The venue was perfect for the occasion, the tables were magnificently decorated with unique treasures for each guest and the food was delish. The overarching purpose of the wellness brunch was to educate, inform and improve the lives of our CLS sisters and community which was apparent. The topics discussed were extremely relevant to women’s emotional and physical health. The guest panelists did a phenomenal job with sharing and advising in a very open fashion. Access taken! Needless to say, I absolutely enjoyed myself as I always do with my CLS sisters!” Enthusiasm, excitement that just doesn’t wear off and the love expressed by CLS Houston member, Sabrina General about her experience during Red Dress Gala Weekend is exactly the reason CLS put the Red Dress Gala on the road. “The Red Dress Gala hosted by the Classy Living Society was nothing short of spectacular!” said Ms. General. “As a fairly new member of CLS Houston, I really didn’t know what to expect, but I can truly say that from Friday through Sunday, I was flabbergasted! I was overwhelmed at the beautiful sight of exquisite melanin women, from all over the country, loving, praising with accolades and celebrating each other all in the name of one cause: service.” She went on to say that she is still in awe, and enjoyed everything from the volunteer effort to the brunch to the Red Dress Gala, which she deemed to be “one of the most sophisticated events ever!”

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In addition to all of these terrific activities, CLS opened its arms to new members in the Houston area. An overwhelming number of ladies joined during and after the Gala weekend! Membership remains open; please join us! Visit our website for more information on our organization and for membership information: www.cls-volunteer.org. To join, click on the “Become a Member” button in the top left corner of the website homepage. We welcome you! LaShanda Pitts, Founder of CLS, intimated that “Access Taken” weekend was an exciting opportunity to expand CLS’s reach in the best possible way. “We are excited to expand our reach by literally giving our mission and vision mobility! In other words, by traveling to fellowship with sisters during our Red Dress Gala weekends in other cities, such as we did in Houston, we are putting our mission and vision statements into action. We are introducing ourselves by inviting and joining together like-minded women from different locales for a weekend of giving back and social events.” “It’s a delight and an honor to do this and end on a high note - our biggest event of the year, the Red Dress Gala,” she continued. “It is an event which truly conveys the genuine mantra of CLS - giving, sisterhood bonding, awareness, recognizing those who are doing great things in the community, having a great time, celebrating health and wellness, meeting new people and leaving different than you came.” She went on to say that Red Dress Gala weekend events in other cities are on the horizon. “We look forward to upcoming Red Dress Gala weekends! Stay tuned - we could be coming to a city near you!”

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Coming Up IN OUR NEXT ISSU E


O ur Atlanta and Houston Societies will kick off the holiday season the Classy Way - at our annual Mingle Jingle holiday event! We will be getting decked out in our festive Christmas Pajamas - as we toast to Holiday Season 2019! These events will benefit The Pajama Program - a reading center that is a mini wonderland where children can nestle to read a book, or hear a story and where once upon a time is tonight! Jingle, jingle, jingle! It’s time to mix & mingle! Stay tuned for our Full Feature on Volunteer of the Year & our Founding Sisters! Announcing‌. (drumroll) Coming at the top of 2020, Classy Chronicles will be a subscription magazine. The magazine that gives back 100% of proceeds from our subscriptions will fund our Adopt-A-School program. Stay tuned for these exciting articles, and more...coming to you on full color pages of our first subscription edition!

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T HE GIF T THAT KE EPS ON GIVING! Become a Classy Living Society Member!

Join Us Today! www.cls-volunteer.org

Profile for Classy Living Society

Classy Chronicles, Holiday, December 2019  

It's the Holiday Season! In this issue, we tell you how to go from office attire to holiday party fabulous, how to beat the holiday blues, a...

Classy Chronicles, Holiday, December 2019  

It's the Holiday Season! In this issue, we tell you how to go from office attire to holiday party fabulous, how to beat the holiday blues, a...

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