E Edition - March 2021

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Spring by Design

Northeast Ohio’s First Social Network

VOLUME 36, ISSUE 8 | MARCH 18, 2021

Refugee Response launches new programs through pandemic to empower its clients By CYNTHIA SCHUSTER EAKIN We have all been affected by COVID-19 this year. For Cleveland’s refugee community, the road has been especially rocky. Refugee Response has helped find solutions to meet their needs. Last April, as many refugee breadwinners lost their jobs due to the pandemic, Refugee Response launched a program to empower Afghan craftswomen and generate income. The Refugee Response helps resettled families to grow roots and become self-sufficient, contributing members of their new communities through programs that include youth mentoring and education, adult tutoring, young adult employment and the Ohio City Farm. The pandemic led Refugee Response to partner with ButterPear, an online fair-trade company, to create a line of handmade face masks. “The sewing program grew out of our adult education program linking women in Cleveland with Afghan women hoping to study for and pass the citizenship test,” Sydney Kornegay, Refugee Response director of adult programming explained. “Ordinarily, the women would go to each other’s homes. When the pandemic hit, this could no longer happen. We helped some transition to online learning. But, a lot didn’t have the time or the technology. We were looking for other ways to engage them. Some had previous experience sewing. We thought we might be able to turn this into income.”

“A few women started sewing masks. There were 500 masks in the original order, which was for a local housing group. We sold 200 more with ButterPear. That gave us a platform to do other things like help them establish a bank account for the first time,” she said. A small grant enabled Refugee Response to give each of the sewers an updated sewing machine. “We expanded during our annual benefit. They sewed canvas bags in which to deliver meals. Restaurant partners designed gourmet meals-to-go for last summer’s, ‘REAP the Benefit’ event. Proceeds helped to expand programming and fund construction of new offices on the campus of Urban Community School,” according to Kornegay. “At Christmas time, we thought about what sort of products we could create. Each woman bought materials and did prototypes for scarves and aprons that they designed. We also started a fashion and photography program. This was a great way to tap into two different groups,” she noted. The Joor Collection, a line of beautiful hand-sewn gifts marketed through ButterPear was born. Joor means “create” in Pashto, an Afghan language spoken by many of the Refugee Response clients. To create marketing materials, clients from the youth employment program were asked to collaborate as models. The Refugee Response hired Daniella Bezil, a client who began modeling at the age of 16 in Uganda, to teach model-

Refugee Response clients learn sewing, crafting, marketing, modeling, photography and much more through its partnership with ButterPear, as well as its many programs. Noela Bulimwengu models a lovely blue scarf from The Joor Collection, photographed by Jason Shaffer. ing classes. The models in training learned about poses, body language and confidence in front of a camera. Kornegay said the craftswomen will be rolling out a new spring line of products. “This will be done in partnership with our farm team. So, these will be garden-focused products,” she noted. Patrick Kearns, Refugee Response executive director, added that the Ohio City Farm experienced a good year during the pandemic. “We had to change our pickup policies because of COVID, but other than that, it has been full steam ahead. This has been our best year in production and sales ever. And, that is something considering that for many of the restaurants we supply, the sales dropped through the floor. We ramped up our farm sales. We also partnered with the May Dugan Center to supply its produce pickup. We used our farm production from last year to introduce a product line of dried spices. That all sold out,” he said. “Most of the changes that we had to make during the

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pandemic were to our education program. Sessions normally take place in the client’s home. That was out of the door immediately,” Kearns noted. “We had to jump in and offer other support services. There was unemployment. There was food insecurity. A lot of our clients worked in restaurants. We had to find them new jobs. We offered housing assistance. Everything went online. That was not accessible to our clients, because they did not speak English. They could not stop in our office for help. We did three months of triage.” “Then, we pivoted to education. We made sure that our clients had wireless internet and at least one device in each home. We needed to get them online,” he explained. “We decided that this situation was not going to go away in a few weeks. We set up a model that we could use through next year. We hired on new staff from the communities that we serve who are fluent culturally and linguistically with our families. We set up a learning lab with safety measures in place for students who are struggling. We

To create marketing materials, clients from Refugee Response’s youth employment program were asked to collaborate as models. Refugee Response hired Daniella Bezil, a client who began modeling at the age of 16 in Uganda, to teach modeling classes. The models-intraining learned about poses, body language and confidence in front of a camera. Daniella Bezil is photographed modeling a white scarf, photographed by Sydney Kornegay have a strong partnership with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, so we know when students are falling behind. Even when students get back into school, they have fallen behind precipitously in education. They are regressing. We will have to work with them for the next couple of years to make up for what has been lost.” Kearns said that Refugee Response meets with students and their families weekly through their teen program at John Marshall High School. “Our students are completing their graduation requirements. Last year, we had five of our senior students graduate and they are now in college. Now in our second year, we have nine senior students and they have all been accepted into college. Even with a challenging environment, learning is still possible,” he added.

ON OUR COVER Northeast Ohio’s First Social Network The primary mission of Currents is to feature and spotlight the nonprofit, arts, educational and cultural organizations so vital to Northeast Ohio, as well as the volunteers and philanthropists who guide, support and sustain them.

Our annual Spring Style Guide offers the latest in fine design for creating fresh and stylish spaces both indoors and outside your home this season. Meet the Designers in Section B, whose unique talents, years of experience and expertise can help wisely and creatively guide you toward bringing to life your vision for improvement, enhancement and enjoyment of your home for the seasons ahead.






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THE ARTS Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s amazing life and influence serves as subject of new exhibit at Maltz Museum By Cynthia Schuster Eakin FOOD & DINING Try Mod Mex Cenas Televisiones options from Momocho and El Carnicero By Cynthia Schuster Eakin SENIOR LIVING Music & Art Therapy programs bring joy to area seniors By Lauri Gross AT HOME Fabulous Shaker Heights home for sale By Rita Kueber

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IN THE CLE Luxury apartments appeal to dwellers at The Lumen, operated by Playhouse Square By Barry Goodrich HOME DESIGN Spring Style Guide offers the latest in trends and traditions for today’s stylish homes MEET THE DESIGNERS Spotlighting NE Ohio’s experts in fine design for enhancing your home this season HOME IMPROVEMENT Realtors share which home improvement projects may bring best return at sale By Paris Wolfe REAL ESTATE Young Team notes this seller’s market means demand for listings, new construction By Maren James


P.O. Box 150 • Chagrin Falls, Ohio 44022 • 525 E. Washington Street • 440-247-5335 / Fax: 440-247-1606

www.currentsneo.com Published monthly by the Chagrin Valley Publishing Company H. KENNETH DOUTHIT III Publisher AMANDA PETKIEWICZ Creative Director and General Manager


MARCH EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS: Cynthia Schuster Eakin, Barry Goodrich, Lauri Gross, Sarah Jaquay, Rita Kueber, Paris Wolf PHOTOGRAPHERS: Peggy Turbett ADVERTISING ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES: Alana Clark, Tobe Schulman AD DESIGNERS: Connie Gabor, Ashley Gier

Please call 440.247.5335 for editorial, advertising and deadline information. Currents is distributed in: Auburn, Avon Lake, Bainbridge, Bath, Bay Village, Beachwood, Bentleyville, Bratenahl, Brecksville, Chagrin Falls, Chesterland, Cleveland Heights, Fairview Park, Gates Mills, Hudson, Hunting Valley, Kirtland Hills, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Moreland Hills, North Royalton, Orange Village, Pepper Pike, Rocky River, Russell, Shaker Heights, Solon, South Russell, Strongsville, University Heights, Waite Hill, Westlake, Akron, Copley, Cuyahoga Falls, Fairlawn, Hinckley, Montrose, Peninsula, Richfield and Silver Lake.

EDITOR’S NOTE The first signs of springtime in Northeast Ohio are cause for celebration in any year, but most especially this one, perhaps, given the global pandemic – a year like no other for most of us. Most everything we once knew as “normal” has been altered and none of us yet knows how long into the future the effects of COVID-19 will last. The vaccines offer promise for brighter tomorrows, as does the annual arrival of spring, with summer on the not-too-distant horizon. Undeterred by a pandemic, Mother Nature continues to offer us a sense of normalcy and continuity discovered in the subtle changes of the four distinct seasons we are blessed to experience here in Northeast Ohio, reminding us that life goes on despite the losses, challenges, hardships or difficulties we may face in living through them. Spring, a season of renewal, brings opportunity for changes and growth on many fronts, including the home front! We’ve spent more time cooped up together than perhaps ever anticipated when quarantine orders were first released last March. We’ve been at home working, schooling and studying, working out, meeting via Zoom, crafting, cooking or ordering food for “contactless” delivery to our front porches. With all that time spent at home this past year, you are bound to notice (with the gray skies and snow of winter mostly behind us, and the sun shining in) that everything is worse for the wear! So, Currents reporters have worked to assemble our annual Spring Style Guide, offering tips for cleaning, de-cluttering and organizing your home this season, and the latest in design trends for any home improvement projects you may be planning as the weather warms – flooring and rugs, windows and landscaping, kitchen and bath renovations, indoor and outdoor furnishings and more. As you read through this issue, we hope you will be inspired to pick a project that will bring lasting enjoyment to you and your family for the seasons ahead. Finally, it is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I type to inform Currents’ readers (and CFHS alums) that reporter Barry C. Goodrich, age 64, passed away unexpectedly on February 24. Barry, who graduated from Chagrin Falls High School in 1975, served as a feature and sportswriter for more than 30 years with the Chagrin Valley Times. In 2006, his passion and talent for writing continued as a freelance feature writer for Currents. Barry was proactive in reaching out monthly to suggest viable story ideas, always pitched to me with Currents’ readers in mind. He never missed a deadline and rarely was there a superfluous or misspelled word in the copy he submitted, a talent appreciated by any editor. For Currents, he most enjoyed writing about books and authors, music and musicians, film and filmmakers, chefs and restaurants, and special exhibits or events being offered throughout Northeast Ohio. But quite frankly, Barry could write well and concisely about most any and every subject, including fashion and home design, whenever I asked. Barry, and his writing and byline in Currents will surely be missed, and we offer and extend our deepest sympathy to his brother, five sisters, nieces, nephews, and friends who survive him. Rest in peace, Barry. ~ Kelli Cotesworth McLellan

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Explore the life of the ‘Notorious RBG’ at the Maltz Museum By CYNTHIA SCHUSTER EAKIN The highly anticipated Cleveland premiere of, “Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg,” is on exhibit at the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage through Aug. 29. Sponsored locally by PNC Bank, this is the first-ever exhibition about the trailblazing associate justice. Based on the New York Times best-selling book of the same name and created in partnership with its authors, Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik, the exhibit takes a deeply personal journey through historic change with an entertaining yet rigorous look at the life and work of Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG) and the Supreme Court. The exhibit was organized by the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. “Museums communicate. When we heard that the Skirball Cultural Center had this exhibit, we contacted them and asked them to send us information,“ said David Schafer, managing director of the Maltz Museum. “We have a special exhibits committee. They reviewed the information and it was unanimously approved. The exhibit opened in Los Angeles, then went to Philadelphia and Chicago. Now, it is in Northeast Ohio. Museums are vying for it.” In addition to her work, the exhibit examines Ginsburg’s varied roles as a student, life partner, mother, change-making lawyer, judge, women’s rights pioneer and pop culture icon. Through archival photographs and documents, historical artifacts, contemporary art, media stations and gallery interactives, the exhibition explores the American legal system and civil rights movements through the lens of RBG’s personal experiences and public service. Like the book, it tells the parallel stories of her remarkable life and the efforts she joined to expand “We the People” to include those long left out of the Constitution’s promises. “As a country, we are refocusing on reversing systemic injustices in our community and in our society. RBG was an example that should inspire everyone,” Schafer noted. “Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg embodied the Jewish value of respect for all humanity,” he said. “The Maltz Museum expresses the same value, as we work toward a more inclusive, just and civil society. We are honored to share the Justice’s story with visitors, in person and online.”

Painting by artist Everett Raymond Kinstler

Skirball Associate Curator Cate Thurston, who developed the exhibition with Carmon and Knizhnik, noted that the exhibition weaves briefs and other writings by RBG, including some of her most searing dissents, with a range of objects to, “give context to the Justice’s place in history.” Exhibit highlights include official portraits of RBG and Sandra Day O’Connor, the first two women to serve on the Supreme Court, on loan from the National Portrait Gallery. There is also correspondence with civil rights leader, poet and lawyer Pauli Murray, whose idea to use the Fourteenth Amendment to litigate civil rights and sex discrimination cases influenced Ginsburg’s winning strategy as an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union. Three-dimensional environments include recreations of Justice Ginsburg’s childhood Brooklyn apartment and the Supreme Court bench. The exhibit also covers RBG’s marriage to Martin Ginsburg, her partner of

more than 50 years. Reflecting RBG’s effect on pop culture, “Notorious RBG” features contemporary art and expression that she has inspired by such artists as Maira Kalman, Roxana Alger Geffen and Ari Richter. In keeping with Carmon and Knizhnik’s book, the exhibition touches on the playful connection between Justice Ginsburg and the Notorious B.I.G., both of whom were born and bred in Brooklyn, New York, as RBG herself pointed out. The title of each section of the exhibit riffs off of a lyric by the late hip-hop artist. Response to the exhibit has been great, according to Schafer. There are timed tickets, social distancing and masks are required in the museum. “We as a museum like to have exhibits that lead to conversations of consequence. We look to our historical figures to be more informed and to be inspired. This exhibit is an extraordinary experience and an opportunity to come here for an hour or an hour and a half and learn about one of the great icons in American history,” he said. Visitors can tour the “Notorious RBG” exhibition in person at the Maltz Museum on Wednesday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Timed tickets can be purchased by phone or online in advance. General admission is $12. Student and senior tickets are $10 and children ages five to 11 are admitted for $5. Admission for children under age five and Maltz Museum members is free. As part of an ongoing outreach effort to connect visitors to the museum during the pandemic, virtual visitors can explore the exhibit online on the first and third Tuesdays of the month at 2 p.m. The hour-long, webinarstyle narrated tour of key objects and artifacts is followed by a docent-led question and answer session. The cost is $10 per person and free for museum members. The museum also offers private virtual group tours with advance notice. The Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage is located at 2929 Richmond Rd. in Beachwood. Phone 216.593.0575 or visit www.maltzmuseum.org. “I Dissent,” a monthly program related to the RBG exhibit features an online discussion about election and voting rights on Mar. 24, a discussion about employment practices on Apr. 19, and an online session about reproductive rights on May 19. The cost to participate in these sessions is $10 for non-members and free for museum members.

Rock Hall’s Wolman exhibit spotlights iconic photographer By BARRY GOODRICH Whether it was B.B. King, Janis Joplin or Jim Morrison, photographer Baron Wolman was able to capture the essence of rock and roll’s most charismatic performers. Wolman, a Columbus native who passed away from ALS last November, is being honored by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with the new exhibit “Iconic: Baron Wolman Images of an Era” running now through the end of the year. Wolman’s work is the Rock Hall’s largest archival donation with over 100,00 images taken by the legendary rock photographer. “We are incredibly honored to preserve Baron’s legacy and extraordinary collection and are grateful for this generous gift,” said Rock Hall president and CEO Greg Harris. “His collection captures the passion and energy of rock and roll’s most influential performers and immortalizes them for generations.” The Wolman collection, acquired with the assistance of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation, features such rock icons as King, Jimi Hendrix, Joplin, Joni Mitchell, Tina Turner, the Rolling Stones, George Harrison, Grace Slick, Howlin’ Wolf, Miles Davis, Eric Clapton and many others. The collection includes all of Wolman’s negatives, transparencies, prints, correspondence and other documents, copies of his books and numerous magazines with his cover images. Many of the collection’s images have never or rarely been seen by the public. “I got connected with Baron personally and we talked about his legacy and his work,” said Harris. “We talked about finding a home for his collection and how this would bring his work full circle.” In a statement prior to his passing, Wolman said, “It gives me comfort and solace to know that my life’s

Photographs of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin, captured by the late Brian Wolman, a Columbus native who passed away from ALS in November of 2020, are part of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s new exhibit, “Iconic: Baron Wolman Images of an Era” running now through the end of this year. Photographs courtesy of Baron Wolman/Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

work will be protected and shared by for years to come. I could not have asked for a more perfect home. Perfect, too, because the archive returns to the Buckeye state, as I was born and grew up in Columbus.” The exhibit showcases Wolman’s ability to reveal the

spirit and character of the artists he photographed, both humanizing and celebrating them while defining the visual landscape of one of music’s most influential eras. “We connect these visuals with the music,” said Harris. “Many of his shots were cover shots for “Rolling Stone” magazine. Sometimes photographers hide behind the camera, but Baron used it to get closer to people.” The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is now open from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. daily with advance reservations required by visiting www.rockhall.com. All visitors will receive a timed entry but many stay as long as they want (masks are required).

The Lumen, operated by Playhouse Square, had its official opening last October at the corner of Euclid and East 17th Street. Photograph of The Lumen courtesy Playhouse Square.

Playhouse Square moving forward despite challenges By BARRY GOODRICH To say it’s been a rough year for Playhouse Square would be an understatement of large proportions. But it’s not all gloom and doom on Euclid Avenue for the largest performing arts center in the country outside of New York City. “We’re adjusting in a number of ways,” said Gina Vernaci, Playhouse Square president and CEO of the COVID-19 restrictions which have crippled live performances across the country. “In terms of theater, we’ve had 1,100 performances cancelled or postponed. That was a very hard blow. There are times when you wonder when the floor is going to stop falling out from under you. But the opening of The Lumen was a great part of the year – to have it open in the midst of this is amazing.” The Lumen, operated by Playhouse Square, had its official opening last October at the corner of Euclid and East 17th Street. The luxury apartment tower is an example of the organization’s long-term real estate strategy to build a working endowment to help secure the future of its theaters and educational and entertainment programs. From outdoor terraces to a rooftop deck and lounge, The Lumen serves as an anchor for the Playhouse Square entertainment district. “Playhouse Square went beyond revitalizing historic theaters to developing a vision for a vibrant downtown community,” said Amy Brady, chair of the Playhouse Square Board of Trustees. “The Lumen is an example of how a non-profit organization can help a city change for the better.” While the stages of Playhouse Square remain dark for now, streaming virtual performances for the region’s schools have flourished. Features of the performances include a show, educational resources created by the performers, pre- and post-show workshops from Playhouse Square teaching artists and a teacher resource guide. “We’re able to offer these programs for free for Cleveland Metropolitan School District schools and for a nominal fee to other schools in Northeast Ohio,” said Vernaci. “If you can’t come to us, we’ll come to you. And we’re now reaching twice as many students as we were before.” As for Playhouse Square’s schedule for the remainder of the year, Vernaci is hopeful for a return to live performances. “Things are still somewhat fluid,” she said. “We’re anticipating that our Broadway shows will be back in the fall and our resident companies may be back as early as October. We’re also in the planning stages of what might be possible to do in the summer.” Last month, Playhouse Square held its Party Apart to Jump Back Together, a virtual cabaret to benefit the organization’s educational programs. The event was highlighted by a Broadway Sings performance with show tunes performed by actors with Cleveland connections who have performed on Broadway and with national touring companies. Vernaci is hoping for a pent-up demand for live performances once the COVID-19 pandemic abates. “People are meant to gather together,” she said. “I think there will be a big boom in the theater industry. We will get there.”

Project Hope for the Homeless announces key hire Project Hope for the Homeless is pleased to announce the recent hiring of Erica Shaw as Social Services Advocate. Shaw of Madison Township works closely with the organization’s Social Services Director and Aftercare Coordinator to serve guests and former guests. Her role includes direct service with shelter guests, hotel program guests, and assisting with the aftercare program as needed. She will help problem solve when needs arise. “I’m assisting the Social Services Director and Aftercare Coordinator during the day on their behalf and helping the guests get the services they need that can’t be done in the evening,” Shaw said. She will also be trained in entering data into the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) and on-call supervision of the shelter to relieve duties of current staff. Shaw began service with Project Hope for the Homeless as a volunteer in the fall of 2015 and then worked as a staff member for the Families Moving Forward program. She left the organization in 2017 to stay at home raising her two children but continued volunteering for the past three years. Now that her children are older, she wanted to resume working to serve those in need. “I am drawn to working with homeless people and those with mental health issues as well,” Shaw said. Judy Burr, Project Hope for the Homeless executive director, said Shaw is a great fit for the organization. “Erica has life experience that is invaluable to this role,” Burr said. “She is a very compassionate person who is willing to learn and reach out to advocate for the needs of others.” Project Hope for the Homeless is the only emergency shelter in Lake County and guests have an 86% positive transition rate to permanent housing or entering a behavioral health treatment facility. For more information about Project Hope for the Homeless, visit www.projecthopeforthehomeless.org or like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/projecthopeforthehomeless. A4  CURRENTS  March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

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New cookbook by Whittier College senior encourages Intuitive Cooking By SARAH JAQUAY “I wanted to write a cookbook that would get young people excited about cooking and [make them] not view it as a task or a job,” notes Whittier College Senior Mary Rose Primosch. The result of Ms. Primosch’s efforts is the gorgeous new cookbook, “The Art of Eyeballing: A Guide to Intuitive Cooking.” It’s a cookbook that eschews measuring and encourages adapting recipes according to one’s tastes and preferences. Like many college students whose campus experience ended abruptly last March, Ms. Primosch is currently Primosch living at her parents’ home in Philadelphia while finishing her bachelor’s degree in Digital Art & Design. She knew last summer “would be weird,” so she looked for internships that could be accomplished remotely. Fortunately for all cooks who don’t like to measure or prefer to use recipes more as a reference than as a formula, Ms. Primosch received one of Whittier’s Sherman Fairchild fellowships. These fellowships are part of a grant from the eponymous foundation that supports and enhances Whittier’s arts departments “by infusing digital technologies throughout the arts curriculum.” Ms. Primosch submitted a winning proposal for a project supporting at-home meal preparation for the newly emancipated. Even before the pandemic, Ms. Primosch noticed her friends who were moving off-campus preferred to grab take-out or keep a meal plan that included on-campus dining options. That didn’t sit well with her. Ms. Primosch began her own meal preparation in high school. She went through various stages of being a vegetarian and vegan but her family didn’t follow suit. “If I wanted to eat something I’d like, I’d have to make it.” But Ms. Primosch was never a fan of measuring and adhering to recipes as if they were gospel. So she developed her own riffing techniques for making meals without so much exactness. Indeed, “The Art of Eyeballing” provides readers with counts for vegetables, fruits and proteins, e.g. one box of pasta or 2 onions; but it also has terms like a glassful of milk and a spoonful of Italian herbs. (Reporter’s note: With each copy, there’s an author’s note explaining a glassful is approximately 14 oz. and a spoonful is somewhere between a teaspoon and a tablespoon. “When in doubt, start with less and add more,” she advises.) In keeping with the cooking adage one must first know the rules in order to break them (a cherished tenet of

These delicious banana bites require only three ingredients, including “a half glass of chocolate chips.” Photograph by Mary Rose Primosch

There’s a new book for cooks who want to be untethered from rigorous measuring by Whittier College Senior Mary Rose Primosch. Photograph by Sarah Jaquay See www.undefinedeats.com/shop/p/the-art-of-eyeballing-cookbook to order “The Art of Eyeballing: A Guide to Intuitive Cooking” or to check out the author’s website, “Undefined Eats.”

Recipe for Banana Bites French chefs) Ms. Primosch knows that “measuring is important.” Mary Rose concedes she probably couldn’t have written this cookbook unless she had lots of experience. “But I can provide shortcuts for beginner cooks turned off by measuring and formulas.” “The Art of Eyeballing” is for omnivores. It includes vegetarian options, but also offers entrees such as cheesy egg sandwiches, sushi rolls and spring rolls. The book’s approach to categorizing recipes is practical and appeals to grazers. “I included everything people might want to eat throughout the day.” So there are fun chapters on drinks and snacks. (This reporter can’t wait for warmer weather to inspire making the watermelon slushi and will try “everything popcorn” soon.)

The photography is stunning and each page induces mouth watering. “I took all the photos in my bedroom.” Mary Rose moved into the attic where the light is best in her family’s old home in Philly’s Chestnut Hill neighborhood. This is her first cookbook and it’s selling pretty well. She wants everyone to know that half the proceeds of each sale are donated to Face-to-Face Germantown, a nonprofit that provides a broad range of social services to low-income families and the homeless. Perhaps the author’s most important message is The Art of Eyeballing is for any creative cook “because the recipes are so adaptable.” The process of intuitive cooking “forces you to rely on all your senses.” And once you’re that engaged Ms. Primosch suspects you’ll be hooked.

From Art of Eyeballing Cookbook: A Guide to Intuitive Cooking by Mary Rose Primosch Ingredients: 2 bananas, 3 spoonfuls of nut butter (any kind will do, but author prefers almond butter) and 1/2 glass of semi-sweet chocolate chips Steps: 1)Slice the bananas and sandwich nut butter between the slices. Repeat for the rest of the banana slices. 2) Put the banana-nut butter slices into the freezer for a few hours or until solid. 3) Once they’re solid, take them out of the freezer. Melt the chocolate chips until they form a runny consistency. Dip the sandwiches in the chocolate and put them back into the freezer until the chocolate hardens.

Iconic Fight For Air Climb heads outdoors to Progressive Field The American Lung Association in Ohio announced that it will host the iconic Fight For Air Climb event outdoors for the first time at Progressive Field on May 2. This is the 11th year of the Fight For Air Climb in Cleveland. The event typically takes place in the stairwells of Key Tower but was reimagined as an outdoor climb challenge for the safety of participants, volunteers and staff. The organization is also offering a “Climb Your Way” option for those who can’t make it to the physical event. Registration is now open for the event, which invites individuals, families, groups of friends, corporate teams and first responders to tackle the stadium stairs. “Without missing a beat, we are headed outdoors,

onward and upward for our legacy Fight For Air Climb event,” said Kim Covey, executive director of the Lung Association. “During this time, it is more important than ever to support lung health, so on May 1, we are climbing to bring an end to COVID-19, lung cancer and lung disease, and ensure healthy air for all.” “Masks will be required at the event and social distancing will be practiced. The safety of participants, staff and volunteers is always our number one priority, so we are continually monitoring local conditions that might affect the Climb. Everyone is encouraged to check our Climb website for the most up-to-date information leading up to the event.”

Money raised at the Fight For Air Climb will fund the Lung Association’s efforts to end lung cancer and lung disease, as well as support the Lung Association’s COVID-19 Action Initiative. The COVID-19 Action Initiative is a $25 million investment to address COVID-19 and protect against future respiratory virus pandemics. The initiative works with public and private entities to increase research collaboration and develop new vaccines, detection tests and treatment therapies. Registration for the Fight For Air Climb is $35 and includes a $100 fundraising minimum. For more information, and to register, visit FightForAirClimb.org/Cleveland.

About the American Lung Association The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.




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across our campus, to fresh chef-prepared dinners being delivered to residents’ front doors, we’re doing everything we can to protect their health and safety, Ohio Living Breckenridge Village is offering creative solutions to help our while maintaining their freedom and independence.

residents feel safe at home right now. From pop-up grocery stores available across our campus, to fresh chef-prepared dinners being delivered to residents’ front doors, we’re doing everything we can to protect their health and safety, while maintaining their freedom and independence.

Call 440.954.8359 to find the home that fits you at Ohio Living Breckenridge Village!

Call 440.954.8359 to find the home that fits you at Ohio Living Breckenridge Village! 36500 Euclid Avenue | Willoughby, Ohio 44094 | 440.942.4342 | ohioliving.org 36500 Euclid Avenue | Willoughby, Ohio 44094 | 440.942.4342 | ohioliving.org

36500 Euclid Avenue | Willoughby, Ohio 44094 | 440.942.4342 | ohioliving.org

36500 Euclid Avenue | Willoughby, Ohio 44094 440.942.4342 | ohioliving.org 36500 Euclid Avenue | Willoughby, Ohio 44094 | 440.942.4342 | ohioliving.org 36500 Euclid Avenue A6  CURRENTS  March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

Eric Williams, owner of Momocho and El Carnicero, offers unique takeout food options By CYNTHIA SCHUSTER EAKIN There is a saying that necessity is the mother of invention. When faced with empty dining rooms this winter due to the pandemic, restaurant owner Eric Williams came up with a unique way to get his food to his customers. “When the pandemic began, I closed both restaurants to assess the situation,” said Eric Williams, owner of Momocho and El Carnicero. “Then, we opened for carry out only. We began offering carry out in June. We did one day of carry out on Cinco de Mayo first to see how we could make it work. We now make enough on carry out to pay the rent. El Carnicero has a front sliding window for take-out orders and we offer curbside pickup. The city of Lakewood reserved a parking spot with signage in front of the restaurant. At Momocho, we have 12 spots in the lot and we offer curbside pickup. You can also pick up carry out at the front counter.” “Next, we expanded carry out to outdoor dining only. That gave us 25 seats at El Carnicero and 50 seats at Momocho. All carry out food is packed to go. If you decide to stay and be seated outside, that is your option. We had to weigh how to increase our revenue and limit risk,” he said. “After that, we transitioned to full-scale dining. We reopened both restaurants the third week in September and continued for almost two months. We shut down for the winter right after Halloween.” “So, I started brainstorming what we could do to add extra income. We did take and bake nachos for the baseball home opener. Our holiday boxes were really popular. For Valentine’s Day, we offered a dessert and cocktail combo. Sales on all of the one-day items were good,”

Williams noted. “Then, I thought about TV dinners. At Momocho and El Carnicero, we have always liked to be different. I thought that, if everybody else is doing carryout, let’s do something different.” “We developed recipes to showcase our food when you can’t be here. With frozen TV dinners, you can heat them and eat them whenever and wherever you are. Some people work a third shift and appreciate a good meal when everything is closed,” he said. “Just about everyone has a microwave. We also decided that heating the meal had to be super simple. You microwave these dinners for five minutes on high and five minutes on 50 percent power.” “We had four weeks of trial and error. First, we wanted recyclable and reusable dinner containers. We wrapped the dinner container in recyclable paper with a sticker noting the weight, ingredients and reheating instructions,” Williams explained. “There are no preservatives in the food. Our chefs in the kitchen are cooking, packing and freezing each and every meal. We tried one of everything on our menu. We handed meals out to friends, neighbors, nurses and teachers. We told them that we needed them to be brutally honest in their feedback.” “They all loved our butternut squash rice bowl. It is vegan and gluten-free. But, everyone came back to us and said that the sauce was pooling in the four corners of the dish rather than enhancing the taste of the meal,” he said. “So, our chefs added a little agar-agar, a thickening agent, to the sauce. Then, they poured the sauce into a sheet tray, chilled it and cut the sauce into strips like a fruit roll up. Two strips of sauce top each bowl and it goes nowhere until the meal is heated.”

Six different Mod Mex Cenas Televisiones are offered. In addition to the butternut squash bowl, there is a Mexicola pork belly rice bowl, chile poblano relleno, and a pork carnitas, roasted chicken and machaca beef enchirito rojo. The frozen dinners include cilantro rice and black beans. Photographs provided by Momocho/El Carnicero “When we considered which dishes to feature, everyone said that chicken would be our best-selling item. Beef machaca brisket is actually our top-seller. That could be because it is one of the signature dishes on our regular menu,” he added. Six different Mod Mex Cenas Televisiones, or TV dinners, are offered. In addition to the butternut squash bowl, there is a Mexicola pork belly rice bowl, chile poblano

relleno, and a pork carnitas, roasted chicken and machaca beef enchirito rojo. The frozen dinners include cilantro rice and black beans. “We had to consider how much labor was involved in preparing each meal and how much the packaging costs when deciding the price of the TV dinners. What we had hoped for was that customers would go online and order carry out off the menu, then add a couple of the TV dinners to put in the freezer. It’s an impulse buy,” Williams explained. “A staff member can reach into the cooler for the frozen dinner while a chef prepares the hot food. We priced the frozen meals at $10 each or three for $25. We have not had a single order that is just for frozen dinners. Everybody gets three or six. It’s paid a big chunk of the rent. The cost of a hot entrée is more. But, you have a salaried chef making the meal to order and the portions are bigger. We are really doing this as a way to stay alive.” “With the TV dinners, you can enjoy a good product at your own convenience. We want to make everything accessible and safe. All of the good things that are happening are what we had hoped. Our staff has never felt that they were in jeopardy of losing their jobs. Every member of our staff has been COVID free throughout the pandemic. So, we know that we are doing something right,” he said. The Mod Mex Cenas Televisiones can be purchased at Momocho, 1835 Fulton Rd. in Cleveland, or at El Carnicero, 16918 Detroit Ave. in Lakewood. Phone Momocho at 216.694.2122 or El Carnicero at 216.226.3415. Visit www.momocho.com or www.elcarnicerolakewood. com to order online.

Your Perfect Summer Getaway at Geneva-on-the-Lake

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Just an hour outside of Cleveland and less than two hours from Buffalo and Pittsburgh, is the gorgeous resort town of Geneva-on-the-Lake, Ohio. While 2020 was the kind of year best left in the rearview mirror, 2021 seems to have plenty of blue skies ahead. Especially on the edge of Lake Erie at the charming resort called The Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake.

Lake Erie Canopy Tours If you’re the thrill-seeking type, you don’t want to miss Lake Erie Canopy Tours. This is one of the prettiest zipline tours anywhere in the state of Ohio. You’ll soar at speeds of up to 35 mph through lovely forests and over creeks. It’s an unforgettable experience. Plus, there are courses designed for both adults and kids.

Ohio’s summer resort The summer resort town of Geneva-on-the-Lake has long been a place for fun and laughs and memories. In fact, it’s Ohio’s summer resort community. The lakeside town celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2020, but the year proved less than cooperative. The Lodge is right off The Strip, the town’s popular hangout. Here, you’ll find a wide array of restaurants, shops, carnival games, coffee shops and more. It’s an awesome classic resort town that is a throwback to the summers of decades ago.

Winery tours Minutes from The Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake are more than 20 wineries just waiting for you to visit. The Lodge’s popular wine shuttles are the best way to explore each of the local wineries. Let us do the driving so you can enjoy the delicious wines, restaurants, gift shops, tours and activities in the perfect setting.

Picturesque accommodations It’s difficult to choose between the rooms and suites at The Lodge and the lakeside cottages. Both accommodations offer all the amenities you could ever need on your Lake Erie vacation. You can’t get any closer to the lake than The Lodge’s lakeside cottages, which have two bedrooms, a kitchenette and panoramic views. Both the cottages and The Lodge are just steps away from our pool, firepits and bike trails.

Watercraft rentals Geneva State Park is home to Cowles Creek, a tributary of Lake Erie. Lake. On top of The Lodge’s free bicycle rentals, guests have access to golf cart rentals, kayak rentals, and paddle boats to explore in and out of the water. Whatever your idea of the perfect getaway, you’ll find it at The Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake. Ohio’s Wine Country Resort has all the adventure, relaxation and activities you could dream of. If you weren’t able to vacation last year, you can make up for lost time now in picture-perfect Genevaon-the-Lake. For room reservations and more information, visit TheLodgeAtGeneva.com.


Add art, pillows, other accents to brighten your home style for spring By LAURI GROSS While Northeast Ohioans are always eager for signs of spring, this year spring is likely to be welcomed with more enthusiasm than ever. In addition to enjoying the sights and sounds of the season, this year spring represents another glorious step closer to returning to a pre-pandemic world. While shedding winter coats, rubber car mats, and perhaps some cabin fever, why not also shed some of what made your home warm and cozy last winter, and refresh it with some light, bright, spring-inspired touches? First, do some de-cluttering and organizing. Start simple by getting rid of old papers, takeout menus, and mail from your kitchen or other high-traffic areas. Then, check your pantry for things you can get rid of, organize better or consolidate. (Maybe you have three nearly empty bottles of turmeric that can be condensed into one.) Then, wash and stash your big blankets, quilts and chunky sweaters. Now, rearrange your coffee table books and items on your mantel and shelves. Often, you can achieve a fresh new look with items you already have. Introducing fresh greenery always brightens up a space and don’t forget your bathrooms: small plants in bright containers work great in even small baths. A new shower curtain is another simple trick for a quick bathroom pick-me-up. Add a citrus-scented candle or choose unscented options in pretty pastels. Also, make sure your light bulbs are nice and bright. For other ways to incorporate plants, consider centerpiece bouquets, tiny bud vases tucked onto shelves, a few simple blooms on a nightstand or a pretty spring wreath on a door or wall. Look around your home with an eye toward areas that could use fresh paint. Of course, painting a whole room is always impactful but maybe introduce a new hue on just one wall or the ceiling. Or paint a door, door frames,

a bookshelf or other small areas that will make a big impact. Today’s popular paint shades include jewel tones, seafoam green and other nature-inspired hues. A new piece of art – especially today’s popular oversized pieces - can really bring new perspective to a space. Or rearrange the furniture and art you have. For instance, if seating was arranged around the fireplace in winter, maybe you can arrange it around a window with a view instead. Don’t forget the power of a mirror to throw light and brighten up a space. Try replacing the large art over your sofa with a large statement mirror. New throw pillows are a fun and affordable way to introduce spring colors. Also, have your wool area rug cleaned and stored while you bring in a spring replacement in natural fibers for a more relaxed vibe. Consider swapping heavy winter curtains with some that are lighter and more vibrant. A new coffee table, end table, TV stand or nightstands can freshen up a whole room, without the expense of a new sofa or other large pieces of furniture. Look for new styles with textural interest and in light finishes. Or change up the fabric on your dining room chairs and you’ll have a dining area that makes a bold new statement. In bedrooms, replace heavy blankets with lighter choices. Crisp neutrals always make a room feel bigger and brighter. Layer whites with light pinks or other pastels for a pop of color while still staying neutral. Spring is also a nice time to add some bright new dishes in the kitchen, especially on open shelving or in glassfront cabinets. A mix of whites and pastels can achieve a designer look. Your newly refreshed home just might generate a reinvigorated outlook and new hope for a future as bright as your décor. Sources: GoodHousekeeping.com, Balsam Hill Blog, TheSpruce.com, Modsy Blog

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Freelance feature writer needed Currents is searching for a freelance feature story reporter knowledgeable about Northeast Ohio. The ideal candidate will have experience in interviewing, researching and writing and will proactively submit viable story ideas on a monthly basis to the editor to be considered for publication. Currents covers the good news of our region, with topics ranging from nonprofits and benefit

charity events to the arts, culture, home design, luxury real estate, fashion, food, dining out, education, travel, senior living, special events and exhibits and much more. Interested candidates should submit a resume and writing samples (no more than 3) to editor@currentsnews.com. We will answer by email or phone only those candidates we wish to interview for possible consideration.

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Window suppliers install more than glass with high-performance windows for every home By LAURI GROSS It’s easy to see what poor-quality windows do to a home but it may not be so easy to know why good windows are important. Windows do a lot more than provide a view. Proper windows add architectural interest to a home, let in light and warmth while protecting your interior from harmful rays, plus they provide security, and with the right hardware and features, will be easy to operate for many years. Patrick McEntee, senior project manager with Crooked River Building Supply in Warrensville Heights said, “We try to exceed expectations. It’s very gratifying because you can have new “Everyone windows in a day and it’s wants the something you see and feel and it makes a difference in Cadillac but your quality of life.” Patrick they might not went on to explain that new have Cadillac windows can make a cold room warmer by eliminatbudgets. It ing cold air leakage and, begins with a he added, “People always conversation. say it’s quieter,” referring to You gotta find clients who live on a busy street and appreciate the out what their ability of quality windows wants and to deaden outside noise. needs are and “The argon gas between glass panes does help block their budget.” the transmission of sound,” — Mike Zembower, he said. Progressive Building Supply Patrick said Crooked River features Marvin window products. “Marvin is a good fit for larger, more expensive homes. And a lot of times we are doing replacements in century homes and Marvin windows are historically accurate. Cities have guidelines and there are organizations like the Cleveland Restoration Society that also offer guidelines. We are a member of the Cleveland Restoration Society. We are also a member of the American Institute of Architects. It’s a nice network of resources. Basically, we are advocating for homeowners.” Mike Zembower, sales manager with Progressive Building Supply in Chagrin Falls, agreed that Marvin wood windows are the “Cadillac.” He said, “Marvin wood windows are the ultimate product. They have all the bells and whistles and their fit and finish is by far better than anyone else’s. Everyone wants the Cadillac but they might not have Cadillac budgets. It begins with a conversation. You gotta find out what their wants and needs are and their budget.” He added that lead times are also a deciding factor, since supply chains are still fighting to get back to pre-pandemic normalcy. Mike added, “The next step down is an aluminum-clad Windsor product. It doesn’t have the fit and finish Marvin does and it has traditional hardware and exposed tilt lashes. Marvin’s double hung extruded aluminum windows have self-contained tilt latches.” Mike added that the exterior finish on Marvin windows won’t fade, crack or split for decades. While Patrick said many customers who come to

Beautiful, efficient windows, like these installed by Crooked River Building Supply, make a statement all their own, especially in black frames which are very popular. Photograph courtesy of Crooked River Building Supply tion and the ability to see the product up close and ask questions. For instance, windows with black frames instead of white, are becoming very popular and customers might want to see these and options in person. “It’s very wide open,” Patrick said of the space in the showroom. “It’s very easy to have multiple buying groups in the age of Covid and still be safe. We have different areas where people can social distance.” Patrick went on to explain that with the exception of buying a window off the shelf in a big-box store, “The entire window industry is madeto-order.” Mike said the Progressive Building Supply showroom is open by appointment. “Our showroom is built out of an old farmhouse with additions,” he said. “So, you get a unique perspective. We are very customer-centric. When they are done with us, we want them to feel like they got more than they paid for. “

Windows that block harmful rays

Many houses in Northeast Ohio are historic and need historically accurate windows, like these from Progressive Building Supply. Photograph courtesy of Progressive Building Supply Crooked River Building Supply are “very self-educated and have done a lot of research,” the showroom is open during Covid for anyone seeking a face-to-face interac-

A8  CURRENTS  March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

Patrick McEntee, senior project manager with Crooked River Building Supply in Warrensville Heights said highperformance glass with a coating can help reduce - but not eliminate – fading from UV of things like carpet upholstery and artwork. Mike Zembower, sales manager with Progressive Building Supply in Chagrin Falls agreed and added, “There are single coatings plus double and triple coatings. These allow the warming rays to come in, but not the damaging rays.” According to SunRayFilms.com (the website of Sun Ray Window Films in Willoughby), this company is a certified installer of clean, clear, invisible 3M window films that provide energy savings, safety, security, privacy and protection for furnishings, carpet and artwork from damaging UV Rays.

Holden Forests & Gardens Launches ‘People for Trees’ One of the most significant things we can do to combat the effects of a changing climate right here in Northeast Ohio is to plant a tree. Holden Forests & Gardens (HF&G) launched a new initiative called People for Trees™ to make it easier for each of us to get involved with this solution. “We are inviting every member of our community to take notice of the trees around us, grow in our appreciation and love of trees, and make a pledge to plant a tree in your yard, at your business, or in your neighborhood,” said Jill Koski, president and CEO of Holden Forests & Gardens. Make your pledge at holdenfg.org/people-fortrees and you will become a part of the regional movement to reverse the trend of tree loss in Northeast Ohio. After you pledge, you will receive information about: • Which trees are best to plant in Northeast Ohio • Where to purchase your tree • When and how to plant your tree • Tips for caring for your tree as it’s growing For those who want to donate to have trees planted, you can make a contribution that will support planting a tree in a Cleveland neighborhood. HF&G has nearly a century of expertise in plants and trees in Northeast Ohio and beyond. Dr. David Burke, vice president of science and conservation, and his team of scientists are making acclaimed discoveries about soil health and invasive pests – most recently discovering the nematode that is killing the American Beech tree. Their work has been cited in The Journal of Forestry, Science Magazine and The Washington Post to name a few. Courtney Blashka, director of community forestry, has launched the Working Woods and Tree Corps initiatives to demonstrate healthy tree and forest management practices. People for Trees will provide a platform for the science and conservation teams to share more of their learning and cutting-edge discoveries with the local community. According to the Cleveland Tree Plan 2020 Tree Canopy Progress Report produced by the Cleveland Tree Coalition (CTC), of which HF&G is an active member, the tree canopy continues to decline, and climate change will have the greatest effect on communities that already have the greatest need. Forested land and tree canopy are declining in both rural and urban areas: In rural areas of Ohio from 2013-2018, the area of forest land decreased by 300,000 acres and live trees decreased by three million. In Cleveland, tree canopy declined by five percent from 2011 to 2017. For more information, and to make your tree planting pledge today, visit holdenfg.org. About Holden Forests & Gardens Holden Forests & Gardens is made up of two of Northeast Ohio’s most important environmental and cultural institutions — the Holden Arboretum and Cleveland Botanical Garden — whose mission is to connect people with the wonder, beauty, and value of trees and plants, to inspire action for healthy communities. The 14th largest public garden in the country, Holden Forests & Gardens has nearly 17,000 member households and an annual attendance of 380,000 for whom we strive to provide inspirational and educational visitor experiences. For more information, visit holdenarb.org. and cbgarden.org.

SENIORS Music and art programs at senior centers offer opportunities to engage and remember By LAURI GROSS Some things never get old, such as the impact and appeal of music and art. Krystal Martin, senior memory care director at Maplewood at Chardon said of the therapeutic art and music programs at her facility, “We use different techniques to allow residents to be expressive and creative and to be connected to the world around them and the outside.” Andrea Bailey, life enrichment coordinator at The Weils in Bainbridge said that, while Covid restrictions have necessitated changes to The Weils’ music and art programs, the Weils team continues to offer both to residents. “Prior to Covid, we had volunteers come in from the National Council of Jewish Women,” Andrea explained. “They were wonderful. They did sing-alongs.” A retired art teacher from the Orange school district also volunteered at The Weils, leading art programs for residents. “We were very fortunate at The Weils to have those volunteers,” Andrea said. Kim Pidala is the lead life enrichment coordinator at The Weils. She said, “The creativity of music and art is a therapy for residents, to engage in something and get their mind off something else. People love to sing and to listen to entertainment. They love to look at the art they produce. It is a conversation piece. They might say, ‘This reminds me of such-and-such’ or maybe when they were younger and they used to paint and they see certain colors they’d use and they think about their childhood.” During Covid, Andrea said, “We did room-to-room visits with a music cart.” She explained that some residents would get up and move and dance. “We like to keep everybody’s brain and body moving,” she added. Art programs at Maplewood include sessions where residents create greeting cards to send to family members. Krystal said there is “amazement on their faces at the end when they say ‘wow I just created that.’” Even residents living with cognitive impairment, Krystal explained, can create what she called magnificent artwork. “One of our favorites is pour painting,” she said as she explained the technique of pouring paint onto a canvas and rotating and tilting it as the colors swirl into beautiful abstract designs. “Residents sell these to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Association,” she said. These and other art programs continue during Covid, but with social distancing and masks.

When not singing or writing songs, R.H. Myers resident Jane Friedman enjoys her artistic side, seen here working with clay. The R.H. Myers apartments in Beachwood are one of eight facilities encompassed by The Residences of Menorah Park, which also includes The Weils (assisted living, memory care, rehabilitation, and more) in Bainbridge. Photograph courtesy of The Residences of Menorah Park

Before Covid, Andrea said, there was often live music in The Weils’ community room, and happy hour with live music. This past summer, The Weils had live music and watercolor painting programs - on their outdoor patio with socially distanced residents One couple was especially popular at The Weils’ live music events. Andrea said, “They fell in love dancing and danced up till the end. The other residents loved to watch them dance.” The husband recently passed away from Covid. His wife still lives at The Weils. Another resident, aged 90, plays on the Weils’ baby grand piano and regularly draws an audience of other residents. Music programs at Maplewood take on many forms. One is a guided therapeutic music program started as a study with the Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging. Maplewood continues the program which features songs grouped by theme. “Seniors get to talk about stories from their past and it lights up their eyes when they have memories from a certain song,” Krystal said. Another program is called Music and Memory where residents use an iPod preloaded with music important to them. “Maybe it’s their wedding song or a song from their first date or their favorite song,” Krystal said as she explained they do this at 4 p.m. each day. “Music helps calm any anxious or sundowning behaviors,” she explained. “We also found music increases appetite so they eat better for dinner. We use this mostly in our memory-care program.” Residents also enjoy painting ceramics as part of the Wiels’ art program, or making beaded jewelry, making mosaics, or painting birdhouses. When they painted bird houses, Andrea explained, “We talked about colors and what kind of bird might be attracted to them and we talked about putting the birdhouses out when the weather is warm.” To replace the frequent live music programs held at Maplewood before Covid, now live entertainers perform by Zoom. “We put them on our big screen TVs,” said Krystal. “It’s neat to make the residents feel that the person is still there in front of them.” Another Maplewood program is called SingFit. During these guided programs, residents are encouraged to follow along with gentle movements. “At the end,” Krystal said, “some residents are full of sunshine. They say ‘this is amazing that we can do journeys through music.’”

Art Imitates Life and Sometimes, Art Unlocks a Life Just ask Menna Asrat and Erin McCall, two young artists studying the benefits of art therapy. Although their paths to this point have differed—Erin McCall, 23, comes from Pennsylvania, for one, and Menna Asrat, 25, is from Ethiopia—the women share much in common. Both are graduate students in counseling and art therapy at Ursuline College; both studied psychology as undergrads; and both share the title of “artist-inresidence” at Judson, where they assist with creative arts and art therapy programming under the direction of program coordinator and art therapist Cathy Bryan. In exchange for their residency, the women receive housing and access to Judson’s art studios. Art therapy has long been recognized as a valuable tool for reaching and engaging people who, for whatever reasons, are unable to communicate through words. “Art doesn’t lie,” says Cathy. “It’s a projection, a mirror of what’s going on inside.” Dr. George Streeter, a psychoanalyst and artist, recognized the value of this approach to connect with people and co-founded the first art therapy studio in the United States in 1967. After moving to Judson in 1999, Dr. Streeter worked with both administration and residents to establish Judson’s Creative Arts Therapy program. Menna and Erin also share the same conviction that art can break through barriers that traditional talk therapy often cannot. Erin has been interested in making art, but it wasn’t until her junior year of college, when she decided to check out an art therapy class, that she saw a bridge between her vocational and avocational objectives. “It was a way I could do my art and also help people,” she says. “That had always been my goal.” Menna, in contrast, came to her practice as a fortuitous side effect of undergrad stress. “Even though I was studying psychology, I started taking one art class each semester to help me de-stress,” she says. It didn’t take long for her to appreciate the therapeutic powers of art making, and she soon launched a personal practice. With the onset of Covid, there have been many challenges to overcome on Judson’s campuses, including how Erin and Menna are able to engage with residents. Collaborating with Cathy, they now create virtual art therapy sessions, organize small open studio sessions and host Judson resident artist gallery talks via GoToMeetings. Both women continue their thesis work, sharing their efforts virtually with residents. “Art breaks down barriers and can lead to conversations that people might not engage in otherwise,” she says. “It can trigger memories, provide release from pain and stress, and help maintain relationships with family and friends,” says Menna. Spoken like a true art therapist.

Know the signs of stress in seniors, and what you can do to help By LAURI GROSS Sometimes, if a resident at the Laurel Lake Retirement Community shows signs that they are feeling stressed, the Rev. Lynn Anderson might encourage that person to find a way to help take care of someone else. It might seem counterintuitive but the Reverend knows what she’s talking about. For instance, she’ll suggest to the resident, “reach out to a peer or a lonely friend. Instead of identifying it as a negative feeling of being depressed, you move that senior to take initiative with a friend,” even if it’s just a simple act like writing someone an encouraging note, she explained. In fact, there are many signs and symptoms that a senior might be feeling stressed, and Reverend Anderson developed a booklet for residents that includes information about the topic, and how they can get help. The booklet describes categories, including a category for people who are doing fine. “Then we have cautious concern, elevated concern and high risk,” Reverend Anderson said. For someone in the category of cautious concern, you might “notice your senior person might be more nervous than usual or irritable or more cranky than usual,” she said. She continued, “They might be getting more headaches or having trouble sleeping. They might be using swear words more often or they might be withdrawing.” For these folks, Reverend Anderson said, they encourage residents to make sure they are getting enough exercise and that they “have outlets for creative energy, so maybe they read a book or take up a hobby,” or reach out to others, as previously mentioned. A December 2, 2020 blog post at JudsonSmartLiving. org cites that exercise is key and adds that it helps to be able to quiet a busy mind and enjoy the present moment. “Meditation is an essential means to achieving mindfulness and reducing stress,” said Sara Peckham, former long-time director of wellness at Judson and member of Judson’s board of directors. The blog post says some people turn to anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medication but these will only mask the symptoms. Mindfulness, rather, helps get to the root. “Meditate, don’t medicate,” said Sara. “Where we’d be a lot more concerned,” Reverend Anderson said, is if the person has a “pervasive sense of sadness and hopelessness. Sleep disturbance is a big in-

dicator something isn’t going well. Then we see impaired decision making. Some people think it’s the beginning of Alzheimer’s but it could be just more stress,” she explained. When a senior exhibits heightened irritability, they might lose emotional control. Reverend Anderson said, “We might also see not only more anger but more crying and a lot more frustration.” At this point, she said, “We encourage our seniors to talk to someone to give them perspective: your pastor, or if they are in a support group, use that group to deal with this. If they are not part of one, maybe they find one, or maybe a family member helps them find one online.” Pre-pandemic, Laurel Lake offered residents many support groups. Now, instead they offer one-on-one support, which often means meeting with Reverend Anderson. People might be entering the high-risk category when they are easily enraged or have excess anxiety, severe memory lapses or a sense of disconnection with reality, the reverend explained. “They might be neglecting personal hygiene,” she added. “At that point, there is definitely a need for an intervention with a professional psychologist, social worker or other resources in the community, and definitely a phone call to a physician who has taken care of this person regularly, who can make a referral to other agencies,” she said, as she added that much of those services are available in-house at Laurel Lake. The Judson blog added that a sense of community and warm relationships are critical to physical and mental health. “As we age, oftentimes we lose acuity, vision, hearing, and sometimes memory,” said Sara. “We also have more to deal with physically; and as these things happen, we tend to isolate ourselves because we don’t want to be ‘found out.’” But, she explained, this is the exact opposite of what we should be doing. There are plenty of steps family members can take at home. Reverend Anderson said having regular contact with your senior person, and having a routine they can count on, helps. For instance, maybe one family member can call each day at a certain time, and another can visit regularly. Also, if there is an activity that a family member used to share with the senior person before the pandemic that they can’t now, Reverend Anderson suggests

trying to find a way to replace that togetherness. For instance, if the senior person enjoyed watching sports with grandkids, try using technology to allow them to watch virtually together. The Judson blog concluded that stress is one of the

many invisible effects of the pandemic and while the effect of this stress is cumulative, so are the efforts to reduce stress. Engaging in stress-relieving activities for the long term increases the overall positive impact, so there’s no better time to start than today.

Chagrin Valley Little Theatre presents streaming musical double-feature March 19-21 Chagrin Valley Little Theatre, which continues to suspend in-person programming for the time being, will offer an online double-feature in March 19, 20 and 21 with video encores of “Right Down Broadway” and “The Pirates of Penzance”. A pay-as-you-can admission provides password access to both videos throughout the weekend via the theatre’s website at CVLT.org. CVLT has paired these two particular productions in memory of Don Edelman and Rollin DeVere II, two past Board Presidents and monumental volunteers who provided decades of service to the Little Theatre both on stage and off. Mr. Edelman passed away at age 91 in September 2020, and Mr. DeVere at age 89 in January, both due to complications from COVID-19. These two men were instrumental in building and maintaining CVLT over much of its 90-year history, and between directing, performing, fundraising, writing, organizing, and handling day-to-day operations large and small, they shaped the organization’s success. “Right Down Broadway”, filmed in 2016, was the last of Edelman’s many directorial turns and one of several collaborations between CVLT and conductor Stephen A. Eva’s Chagrin Falls Studio Orchestra. This 90-minute cabaret features a troupe of talented vocalists (Ben Merold, Ron Davis, Gene Karlen, Greta Rothman, Colleen O’Leary, Libby Merriman, Amy Hesslein-Grant, and Sharon Lloyd) fronting the 40-piece orchestra through a variety of Broadway’s greatest hits from all eras.

“The Pirates of Penzance”, Gilbert and Sullivan’s 1879 comic opera about an apprentice pirate who falls in love with a Major General’s daughter, was staged in the summer of 1984. Mr. DeVere appeared as MajorGeneral Stanley, delivering a memorable rendition of the show’s iconic patter song “I am the very model of a modern Major-General”. He noted the role as a favorite among the over sixty in his acting career. The video has been restored from the theatre’s VHS archives for this online presentation and features a full orchestra under the direction of Edward Battaglia II, who also founded the Cleveland Choral Arts Society. This double-feature is one in a series of online presentations that CVLT has offered throughout the pandemic. Upcoming events include weekly online youth theatre classes for ages 5+ beginning March 13, a filmed-for-the-web version of “War of the Worlds” from the original 1938 radio script in April, and Arthur Miller’s “The Price” in May. Details and admission are online at CVLT.org. Chagrin Valley Little Theatre is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit funded through individual and corporate contributions. Our programming is made possible in part by the citizens of Cuyahoga Country through Cuyahoga County Arts and Culture and by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council (OAC). The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. www.currentsneo.com  March 18, 2021 CURRENTS A9

Designers discuss the latest in flooring trends to enhance beauty, functionality By PARIS WOLFE When it comes to décor trends, Ingrid Porter, of Ingrid Porter Interiors says it’s about more than the latest and greatest. “After being home all year people really dug into HOW they live in their homes and what makes them happy. They are not just getting the latest “thing” or “style” because it’s here,” she says. “Homeowners are really taking time to discover what they truly like and how changes can make a big difference to them in their own homes.” Translated to household flooring, performance is key. Is it comfortable? Is it beautiful? Is it low-maintenence? Is it durable? “The flooring in your home needs to perform for your family,” says Porter. “We are seeing a lot of hardwood flooring in the main areas and a lot of tile in the back-hall laundry rooms. Bathrooms are seeing fun colors, patterns, and new approaches to tile. “ Flooring matters for how a room is being used, says Brittany Chapple, interior designer, Payne & Payne Builders, Chardon. “In high-traffic areas durability is key. Especially when it comes to pets and kids. Waterproof material and a flooring that will stand the test of time and traffic are desired. People want a flooring that they don’t have to worry about a constant clean up.” Engineered wood, vinyl and laminate all offer a wide range of waterproof options that increase the lifespan of flooring. Many are being made to look like stone and wood. “They look extremely realistic and provide tons of durability,” she notes.

Once materials are chosen, she says colors tend to be lighter and brighter. “People have moved away from dark, heavy-looking floors. We are seeing floors that are blanched and bleached, blonde and whitewashed. The top colors in wood, laminate, vinyl, and tile are grays, cool colors, black and white.” Flooring with texture is in. Wood that is distressed, wire brushed, and hand scraped. The texture gives character to a space while extending the life of the floor. Imperfections are also less noticeable. In tile, large format and geometric designs are making a comeback. “We have seen geometric designs before but now they are being used at an even larger scale to create a

more dramatic effect in a space,” Chapple explains. “Uniquely shaped tiles add a decorative element into any space,” she says. “We are seeing tons of picket, fan, arabesque, and hexagon looks. Tile that is made to look like marble and highly detailed patterns also continue to be popular. In rooms requiring comfort and warmth carpets and rugs are still the go-to. But that carpet may be a little different. “Carpet with twists and patterns bring in texture,” says Chapple. For even more warmth, some Northeast Ohio homebuilders are adding radiant heat floors to bathrooms, kitchens, basements, and rooms located over a garage. Radiant heat will uniformly heat a room and floor,

eliminating any cold spots. Danielle Dostall, interior architectural designer at W Design in Chagrin Falls, says, “Flooring is such a huge part of the home and one that should be invested in and not overlooked. As far as flooring trends go you can’t go wrong choosing quality materials and classic design options.” Room function determines flooring form when Dostall is in charge. “A kitchen will get more daily usage then a guest bathroom. Taking in to account the space and how it will be used then allows us to choose the correct and most durable material.” Real wood flooring ranks high here. “A beautiful hardwood floor never goes out of style,” she says. “We typically do the same wood option throughout the home, but of course it is always based on the client preferences and overall aesthetic of the home. If using hardwood throughout we love to layer in stunning area rugs to add color and softness.” Wider planks and mixing plank widths achieves a unique overall look. For those who want a visual, W Design’s new showroom, W Home in Chagrin Falls, features planks in numerous sizes ranging from 10 to 18 inches. Dostall suggests that a foyer gets “wow” factor. “We like to use a stunning feature tile with a pattern or inlay,” she says. “We also love to use a fun tile in both powder room baths and guest baths. A cement tile that has more pattern or colors is something we love to select. For the main floor and master-wing we aim to select something more classic.” When it comes to wall-to-wall carpet, it warms up bedrooms and playrooms. “We work some incredible local companies like Marshall Carpet and Watson Carpet,” she says. “They offer a beautiful selection of quality and luxury options.”

Dispose, donate or keep? Organize your home It’s well documented that Millennials are less sentimental and acquisitive than their parents They don’t want your matching china for 24. They may not even want your room-size oriental rug. So, what do you with the unneeded items when you’re rightsizing? You organize into categories. Then, find alternate outlets for treasured items and donate the rest. One organizing and moving company suggests allocating at least 100 hours … about two and a half work weeks … to the task of sorting through the items you’ve amassed over decades. Then evaluate its future status as keep, pass to heirs, sell, consign, donate, recycle, or toss. Chris Axelrod of Bratenahl, who is known in some circles as Cleveland’s GoToGuy (clevelandgotoguy.com), says, “I tell people who are facing right-sizing, a simple way to do it is to get a pack of red, yellow and green postit notes. Then, go through the house and make decisions about each item’s next residence.” He explains that red means stop, it stays with the owner. Yellow means undecided. Green leaves the household. “It sounds elementary, but this forces you to make decisions. You see the colors and you get a sense of the volume,” he notes. Sometimes the process can be repeated until yellows are all gone. “The hardest thing in this process is pulling the trigger. It’s emotional,” he says. But, waxing poetic, he says, “It was gifted to you by the universe, now you’re giving it back for another life.” Giving it back to the universe can start with Axelrod if you have fine antiques, vintage automobiles, or rare collections among other unusual items. “I like competitive hard-to-place items. I like using my mind and resources to think through and consider a market for items most people would walk away from,” he says, noting the rehoming of a pair of 8,000-pound granite eagle monuments carved by a 19th century sculptor. “It’s not the kind of thing you put on Craig’s list. They took a year to market.” He dispels the notion that collections are out. “Certain items are out. Shelf-sitters are out,” he says. “Younger homeowners and designers don’t want shelves cluttered with things.” “A collection that’s well curated, like a beautiful fountain pens or wristwatches, has a market with other collectors. You have to know where to find them.” And that’s Axelrod’s expertise, finding the most interested buyers

from around the country. If you find yourself overwhelmed or with too many yellow and green post-it notes tagging objects, you might want to hire a professional move manager like Transitional Design in Broadview Heights. “It can be emotionally overwhelming,” echoes owner Nancy Sheeler. Her team does everything from planning a move and packing to physically moving and selling items at a 15,000-square-foot retail outlet or at online auctions. They’ll even truck donations and trash to its final destinations. Household liquidator Andrew Hohenfeld and others like him help value and sell the items through estate sales on location. In addition to estate sales, Hohenfeld offers consignment on better quality items, again matching sellers with interested buyers around the country. “My specialty is fine estate jewelry and designer costume jewelry and designer handbags,” he notes. Building materials and large items that seem hopeless may be destined for Rebuilder’s Xchange in Cleveland. Owner Jessica Davis runs a 50,000-square-foot warehouse containing everything from furniture and fixtures to vintage bars and shop materials. Meanwhile antique retailer Ron Greenwald of Greenwald Antiques on Chagrin Boulevard is buying luxury goods as well as 18th, 19th and 20th century decorative objects of art and jewelry. “I’m actively looking for quality items – paintings, sculpture, silver and fine crystal,” he says. The store is also considering meaningful midcentury modern art. For desirable, but more ordinary items consider approaching a consignment store that deals in household goods. Some, like It’s So You Resale in Willoughby deal in current clothing, jewelry, and home décor items. “Good linens, lamps, current wall art, casual dishes and mirrors are big sellers for us,” says owner Laurel Howes. “I can sell the occasional chair, side table, nightstand, farm table and chairs, but not formal furniture.” She specifies that furniture size must be manageable by two women and an SUV. With so many people working from home desks are in demand. Seasonal décor like door wreaths is hot in season. Figurines and collectibles are a firm “no.” Consigners make 45 to 50 percent of the final selling price. “People must have realistic expectations of selling prices. They can be as little as 10 percent of the original cost or 60

percent. It depends on supply and demand,” says Howes. For items that are hard to place donating them to a charity will extend their useful life, and merit a tax deduction. Consider Hospice of the Western Reserve, National Council of Jewish Women/Cleveland or Cleveland Furniture Bank. Volunteers from Hospice of the Western Reserve prefer to review pictures for appropriate, gently used furniture, home décor, lamps, dish sets and more. They will arrange professional moving companies to pickup appropriate items. “Bedrooms sets are in high demand, but no mattresses, TVs or electronics,” says Lisa Scotese Gallagher director of staff experience. The items are sold at reasonable prices in quarterly, weekend sales. Funds are used to benefit Hospice clients. For example, the agency purchased a lift chair to improve for one client and a laptop for a pediatric patient who didn’t have the financial means or insurance coverage. NCJW/CLE raises money through a retail thrift store – Thriftique Showroom, 5055 Richmond Road in Bedford Heights, and a four-day, annual Designer Dress Days event in October. They accept donations for both. Thriftique takes furniture, artwork, clothing, housewares, home goods and more. Designer Dress Days works with donated designer clothing and accessories. Proceeds from both these retail operations support NCJW/CLE community projects and programming to improve the lives of women, children, and families.

The ideal situation. That’s how Peggy and Lloyd describe living at Judson Manor.

“We love it here, and our kids love that we do.” Originally from nearby University Heights, the Culps love their two-bedroom


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apartment overlooking downtown and University Circle. They especially enjoy the fitness center at Judson, in-house live musical performances, and being within walking distance of The Cleveland Museum of Art and The Cleveland Orchestra. “We’ve met a great group of people who share our interests. We also feel good about a place that’s safe, and so near to two major medical centers, which gives our children peace-of-mind as well,” says Peggy. Read the full story at judsonsmartliving.org/blog

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March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

Bringing Community to Life Judson Park Cleveland Heights | Judson Manor University Circle | South Franklin Circle Chagrin Falls

judsonsmartliving.org | 216.930.1688

Barrie Spang Associate ASID

Sapphire Pear Tons of kitchen storage can be beautiful, as in this design by Somrak Kitchens, Inc., which also incorporates popular trends including natural wood, and a lovely shade of blue. Photograph courtesy of Somrak Kitchens, Inc.

Form and function is the name of the game in kitchens, bath By LAURI GROSS Homeowners looking to remodel their kitchen or bath have their sights set on maximum beauty but also demand major functionality for these much-used spaces. Local designers are up to the job. Linda Hilbig, president at Somrak Kitchens, Inc. in Bedford Heights said, “While kitchens have always had to accommodate a place for kids to do their homework, now they are accommodating folks working from home as well. Larger kitchens that can accommodate family gatherings are becoming popular. People want to cook in them, work in them, entertain in them and gather around the table to play cards in them.” Sometimes, achieving a high level of functionality begins with the shape of a kitchen. Linda said, “L-shaped kitchens with large islands are the most popular options and most people are open to removing walls to open the kitchen into other areas of the home.” Since many people are making fewer trips to the grocery store, they need more storage than ever. “Floor-toceiling cabinets, and pantries that are easily organized with extra storage are becoming popular,” Linda added. As for colors in these high-style, high-function kitchens and baths, Emeil Soryal, owner and designer at Kitchen & Bath, Etc. in Bainbridge, said, “We see a lot less grey. White is still very strong and we are seeing alot of new accent colors.” Emeil explained that many people are choosing cabinets for their island in shades of blue or green, and that it’s popular to tile a kitchen or bath backsplash in bright colors. Linda agreed and added, “While painted cabinetry is still the most popular trend right now (white, grey and blue,) designers are predicting a trend toward stained cabinetry leaning toward a more natural look. With people being indoors more than usual this year, they are being drawn to colors from the great outdoors. They are using bright colors, particularly those seen in nature, as accents.

Backsplashes are a great spot for introducing color to a kitchen, as in this design by Kitchen & Bath, Etc. Photograph courtesy of Kitchen & Bath, Etc. Think forest green, eggplant, rich plums, turmeric, sage and honey, with blue and green being the most popular accents in 2021.” The back wall or floor of a shower is another great place to make a colorful design statement. Emeil said that, in addition to choosing tiles for their color, clients are now drawn to tiles with interesting shapes, or that are installed in patterns including herringbone, chevron, hexagon and penny (round) tiles. Floating shelves (which get their name from the fact that they do not include any visible brackets or hanging hardware) look great on walls flanking a kitchen sink or vent hood, and add needed space to bathrooms. Emeil explained that many clients like the look of raw wood for cabinets, floors or floating shelves. “The wood is of course finished but it has a raw look,” he said. To keep things visually interesting, Emeil said, “designers recommend not

to make the floating shelf match the cabinets but maybe it will match the floor.” Linda added that barstools and pendant lighting are other common ways for homeowners to inject some color and personality to a space. Since open floorplans are still very popular, many homeowners choose a single flooring material for the whole main floor of their home. Emeil said he is seeing a lot of engineered wood (a thin layer of real wood backed by layers of plywood), and a lot of luxury vinyl tile (LVT) that resembles real wood but is a lot more scratch resistant and water resistant. “It can be used anywhere in the house,” Emeil said. As for countertops, quartz is still king, especially in light colors. In the bathroom, Emeil said, quartz holds up better than granite to makeup, nail-polish removers and other personal hygiene products. For those who still prefer granite, Emeil said, “Manufacturers of granite are coming up with more colors in honed finishes and leathered finishes to provide something not very easily created in quartz.” Linda added, “Thick wood countertops in rich wood grains like walnut and mahogany that are water resistant and even waterproof are also becoming very popular choices.” Wifi-enabled smart appliances are also popular. Some of the benefits, Emeil said, include better service when something goes wrong. “Technicians can log into the unit from the factory and diagnose problems remotely and then if they do need to come, they arrive with the necessary parts already in hand.” Also, smart appliances can work together if they’re from the same manufacturer. For instance, a cooktop and a vent hood can communicate so the hood knows when to turn on, and smart faucets can dispense the right amount of water at the right temperature via voice commands. In the wake of the pandemic, there is much pent-up demand keeping local designers busy creating spaces like these, that can do it all.

Barrie Spang started Sapphire Pear in 2015 after a working as an interior designer at another Westside design firm for 20+ years. As a child her family moved often within Rocky River and she learned at a young age how improvements to a home and good design can transform how you feel in a space. She remembers wanting to be an Interior Designer at a young age and telling an Aunt at the age of 10 that “she wanted to make people’s houses prettier”. Sapphire Pear came out of a dream that Barrie had to own her own company. Sapphire Pear is a full-service Residential Interior Design Firm and Home Décor Store located in Rocky River. The Sapphire Pear Team is inspired by color and classic design with a twist. When you visit Sapphire Pear it feels like you are visiting a friend. They have even had a client fall asleep on one of their sofas. The Team is made up by interior designers, Barrie Spang Associate ASID and Sean Carter, Allied ASID, Cristina Bowery who is the Project Manager, Design Assistant Kaitlyn McKnight, and Karen Cashbaugh who handles accounts receivables and invoicing. Based in Rocky River, Sapphire Pear works throughout Northeast Ohio and has completed projects all over the country including homes they are currently designing in Charleston, SC, Naples, FL, and Boca Grande FL. They also offer virtual design and their home décor store is online through their website. Design is so personal, which is why Sapphire Pear prides itself on truly listening to their clients in the design phase of the project. They ask detailed questions like, what the client’s interests are, what colors they are drawn to, how they use their home, and who resides there (furry or human), before creating unique, individualized designs for their customers. Barrie has always believed that you do not have to sacrifice quality design to really live in your home. When meeting with clients, Sapphire Pear often hears that clients plan to put off re-decorating a space in their home until the kids are grown-up or their new dog grows out of the puppy phase. By selecting the correct products, like performance fabrics, indoor/outdoor rugs, or durable surfaces, any space can be beautiful and livable for anyone. Good design for your lifestyle. Visit sapphire pear.com.


“Texture and dimension are becoming more prominent in design. I love to see that extra layer of detail, whether it be with a dimensional tile, millwork wall treatment, or even wallpaper.” - Darlene Justice, Architectural Justice

Calling Architectural Justice an interior design firm would be just scratching the surface of all the capabilities the company has to offer. From full-service kitchen and bath remodeling to stone fabrication, metal, and woodwork, the possibilities are endless. Architectural Justice is a collection of designers, artisans, sculptors, and woodworkers. The Medina Design Center consists of a one-of-a-kind showroom, an expansive stone slab yard, a granite fabrication facility, a woodshop, a finishing shop, and a metal studio. The company sits on a 25-acre campus in Medina, located just two miles south of Route 303 on Pearl Road. James Justice started the business 35 years ago. He spent nearly 20 years working out of his home studio, building cabinetry, and working on remodeling projects. In the early 2000s, as granite was just taking off, James started to pursue the stone industry, acquiring granite slabs and offering fabrication services. After quickly outgrowing space, James acquired the property on Pearl Rd. that was originally Longview Farms. After many years and several expansions and renovations later, James has grown Architectural Justice into the ultimate destination for all things design. The showroom

was nationally recognized in 2019 by Kitchen & Bath Design News, winning a bronze award for Best Showroom Design. One of Architectural Justice’s most valuable resources is their team of talented designers and artisans. The design team typically works on residential interiors, especially kitchens and bathrooms. They have also completed several commercial projects including restaurants, churches, and other showrooms. Most recently, the Justice team worked on the remodel at Olesia’s Taverne of Richfield. At Architectural Justice all of the products are in one place, making it convenient for clients to make selections and work through the remodeling process. The designers collaborate with homeowners to create unique spaces that tailor to their individual needs. Clients are provided with 3D renderings to help homeowners envision what their new space will look like prior to making the investment in their home. When you’re ready to talk about your project or just want to look for ideas, visit Architectural Justice Design Center at 2462 Pearl Rd. in Medina. To learn more, visit architecturaljustice.com or call 330.225.6000.

www.currentsneo.com  March 18, 2021 CURRENTS B1

A lovely pair of Polished Bronze Benches Upholstered in Kelly Wearstler Fabric c. 1980’s. Her style combine’s mid-century design with an ode to the 1940’s. GREENWALD ANTIQUES, greenwaldantiques.com.

Incorporate retro, vintage and antique elements in your home to create ‘Grandmillennial’ style By LAURI GROSS A current popular home-design style is named for the greatest generation. Known as Grandmillennialism, granny chic, or neo-Victorian, this is a style that defies one of the other popular looks in home design: the grey-and-white palette featuring clean, minimalist lines. While Grandmillennialism does indulge modern sensibilities of practicality and sophistication, it’s also a celebration of cherished memories of grandparents’ homes full of lacy, floral, ornate décor. It’s possible – and fun – to combine both in this movement that introduces retro, vintage, and antique elements in a modern setting to create a totally new aesthetic. At its roots, Grandmillennialsm is about rekindling old favorites while modernizing and injecting your personality. For instance, if you love the look of floral-print fabric, but can’t quite see yourself with a whole sofa bursting with cabbage roses, maybe introduce the look on a side chair, or curtains instead. Also, update it by choosing easy-care fabrics, rather than old-fashioned materials that require dry cleaning. While grandma’s family room might feature maximalist wallpaper depicting peacocks, pineapples or intricate jungle scenes, capture the essence without the overdose by framing a panel of wallpaper to hang as art. Or incorporate some of the same bold patterns in a tile floor or backsplash. Embroidery is another key element of granny chic design. But instead of a sofa buried under a collection of embroidered pillows, choose a few embroidered with modern slang as a bridge between old and new. A few well-chosen accessories will enhance the look. Think modern lamps with granny-style pleated shades, or a

few pieces of sea glass, figurines or crystal culled from your grandparents’ collection, or from your own newly collected pieces. Add an ornate mirror, skirted side chair or elaborate chandelier. Your aunt’s antique wooden sewing box will look right at home, as would a canopy bed or other piece of heirloom furniture in walnut or cherry. Keep an eye out for vintage details like spooled legs and spindles. Try incorporating items that show your appreciation for patina and age. Clay, terra cotta and decorative ceramic pieces work well, as do stone and wooden antiques or even a Grecian-style bust. It’s ok to mix patterns. In fact, it’s great. Tastefully done, a home with mixed patterns achieves a sophisticated elegance that is perfect in a home with a Grandmillennial style. To pull it off, find patterns in the same color family or with a common design element. For every flouncy and detailed pattern, choose another that’s more modern and simple. Layering in the right well-loved pieces will showcase your personality without appearing cluttered. Old-school topiaries and other houseplants will also enhance the granny chic look. Also, try introducing blankets, rugs, tablecloths or furniture coverings with fringed edges or scalloped borders. It’s kind of a “more is more” mindset that creates a lived-in level of comfort featuring traditional touches combined with a bright look that is more often associated with modern design. The idea is embraced by those seeking to step away from the ubiquitous neutral transitional style who want more color and personality. The result is fresh, not stuffy; nostalgic, not kitschy. Grandma would approve. Sources: SimpleMost.com, HouseBeautiful.com, HadleyCourt.com, BairdWarner.com

Kim Davis, Sedlak Interiors

Meet the Designer As a child, Kim Davis was fascinated and inspired by her mother’s love of sewing and, particularly, her ability to keenly coordinate fabrics, textures, trims, and even buttons to make clothing for she and her sister. That interest as a young child was a catalyst that ignited the journey for Kim to pursue interior design as a career. Originally from the west Texas town of Odessa, Kim attended and graduated from the University of North Texas, in Denton, TX, with a BFA degree in Interior Design and a minor in Industrial Arts. Shortly after moving to Ohio in 1989, Kim responded to a newspaper ad telling of an opening for an interior designer. John Sedlak, the founder of Sedlak Interiors, offered Kim a position to work at the original Sedlak’s store on Woodland Avenue (now Larchmere Blvd.) Kim spent one year at the original store and recalls the days of learning her way around the many buildings along Woodland Avenue that housed Sedlak Interiors offices and showrooms. Her entire interior design career has been associated with just three employers, all with furniture stores. Her first two jobs were with small furniture stores in Texas, but for the last 31 years Kim has called Sedlak’s home. Today you can find Kim applying her interior design skills at Sedlak’s store in Solon, OH. In fact, some of the displays and merchandising in the 27 galleries of the 140,000 sq. ft. showroom are designed or inspired by Kim. She has a true gift and keen sense of seeing in-

INVITATION TO CONSIGN Our Cleveland office is welcoming consignments in all collecting categories for our upcoming

dividual ‘pieces and parts’ of a project and envisioning a well-designed, coordinated and exciting space. Kim’s true talent is going into people’s homes and helping them reimagine their space. Almost always scaled floor plans are incorporated, to make sure the new furniture proportionally fits the room, and allows for proper traffic flow. Kim’s real enthusiasm begins with choosing the furniture, lamps, wall art, accessories, wall surfaces, flooring, area rugs and carpeting. “I look at the entire space from top to bottom and imagine what it can be. True satisfaction comes from seeing the entire design project all come together. I am comfortable working with just about any design style my customers have, or want to create,” says Kim. Kim’s satisfaction comes from helping customers remove the fear of making a bad or wrong choice (the number one reason why furniture shoppers put off making furniture purchase decisions) then, seeing those same people become repeat customers. According to Kim, “When I hear the excitement in my customers’ voices saying that they can’t wait to get the furniture setup at home, that’s when I know I’ve had a good day. I guess you can say that I provide peace of mind for my customers. I often tell them, don’t buy it unless you love it! It’s a two-way process, and I want my clients happy.” You can usually find Kim Davis ready to help at Sedlak Interiors, 34300 Solon Road, Solon, OH, 440.248.2424 www.sedlakinteriors.com.

CATEGORIES Fine Art Jewelry & Timepieces Furniture & Decorative Arts Arms, Armor & Militaria Books & Manuscripts Sports Memorabilia Asian Art

auctions. Please contact us to discuss the single piece or entire


collection that you are considering


selling and to schedule an appointment to receive complimentar y auction estimates.

CURR1118 CURR1118

B2 CURRENTS March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

cleveland@ hindmanauctions.com

Pat Perrino, Perrino Custom Builders, Remodeling and Furniture We are a one-stop shop for all your building and remodeling needs. When you hire us, we do not funnel you to second party retailers. We are direct dealers for flooring, cabinetry, hardware, lighting, closets, furniture, and accessories. You can stop in, view our displays, and see where it all comes together at our Design Center located at 7976 Mayfield Road in Chesterland. We employ the best ASID Certified designers in the industry. They will take ideas from your Pinterest and Houzz boards and create 3D images of your finished space to give you the look you desire. You can view our New Construction and Remodeling portfolios by visiting our website at www. perrinobuilders.com. Be sure to view the before and after photos of our happy remodeling customers! I love my hometown and have been building in the Cleveland area for over 30 years. We work vigilantly to stay as a leader in our industry by continuously adding new floor plan designs and modernizing them with open floor concepts that are conducive to today’s active lifestyle. We think of it as giving our plans a facelift, like General Motors did with the Chevrolet Camaro or Ford with the Mustang. They have a modern feel, but you can still see the traditional aspects and beauty as they move into the future for today’s buyers. We are taking that same concept by modernizing our Farmhouse, Tuscan, Contemporary, French Provincial and Classical designs. Come see for yourself and visit our Modern Farmhouse model home in the Acacia Estates located at 200 Eagle Point Drive in Lyndhurst and our Modern Tuscan model home in Sterling Lakes located at 4535 Monet Place in Pepper Pike on Saturday and Sunday from 1pm-4pm. If COVID-19 has you homebound you can visit our website at www.perrinobuilders.com and view our 3D Virtual Tours of our models.

Remote courses and lectures offered through CWRU’s Siegal Lifelong Learning Case Western Reserve University’s Siegal Lifelong Learning is pleased to offer the following remote courses and lectures to name a few: Cultural and Political Sources of Cleveland’s Great Cultural and Civic Institutions Lecturer: David Hammack, Hiram C. Haydn Professor of History Emeritus, CWRU Date Tuesday March 23 Time 7 p.m. ET Sibling Rivalry in the Book of Genesis Lecturer: Anthony Wexler, SAGES Teaching Fellow, Lecturer, Department of English, CWRU Date Wednesday March 24 Time 7 p.m. ET More information can be found at case.edu/lifelonglearning.

Lot 259, Carved Walnut Bed, Italy, Late 19th cen. Estimated for auction $2,500-$4,500, sold for $6,500 in the 2/20/21 auction. NEUE AUCTIONS, neueauctions.com.

Shaker Arts Council Seeks Artists for Art Competition for Utility Box Designs Building on the success of the Painting the Town and Building Blocks utility box projects, the Shaker Arts Council (SHAC) is pleased to announce this year’s project: SHAC on TRAC. SHAC, in collaboration with the Reginal Transit Authority (RTA), is sponsoring a juried art competition for the design of utility boxes located along Shaker Heights rapid tracks. SHAC is looking for artists 21 years or older that live or work in Shaker Heights or reside in the Shaker Heights School District. Designs and applications must be submitted no later than Friday 30 April at 5 p.m. For more information and to download the call, application, and template visit www.shakerartscouncil.org. Shaker Arts Council’s SHAC on TRAC Art Competition for Utility Box Designs is supported in part by the residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. Shaker Arts Council (SHAC) is a volunteer nonprofit organization whose mission is to enrich the cultural fabric of Shaker Heights by establishing the arts as a vibrant and integral part of the community. www.currentsneo.com  March 18, 2021 CURRENTS B3

Reflections Interior Design Whether working on new builds or full home renovations, Reflections Interior Design is known for finding the potential of beauty wherever it may be. For several decades, Reflections has been expressing that beauty through their Modern Traditional design style. It’s a fresh twist on a classic that brings their clients’ homes interior into the present day. “We take our clients tastes, preferences and how they live and from there we create a design that reflects them. All the while complementing the architecture of their home,” says Marissa Matiyasic, principal & owner of Reflections. The team at Reflections provides a “concept to completion” design process, seeing their projects through from the initial vision until the last accessory is placed. “Our clients are busy people leading hectic lives; we make their home design process easier by handling the many details that come with extensive design projects,” says Marissa. But they don’t do it alone, over the decades they’ve developed trusted relationships with trade partners, and working together they bring the vision to life. Ensuring that clients always know they are in the design process is critical to Reflections. Through weekly updates, a designated client portal, and clear communications, they achieve that and something else, too: their clients’ trust. It also allows them to activate the guiding principle that a great vision shows you where you’re headed and a great process gets you there. Reflections believes that design matters because it connects us to beauty, and beauty inspires us, uplifts us and creates harmony in our lives. That’s why they feel that good design doesn’t just reshape homes it also reshapes our lives, and it’s why they’re entirely dedicated to designing surroundings that invoke harmony. Operating out of their sundrenched studio in the Cedar Fairmount District, Marissa leads a team of talented women

Rug options are plentiful this season, for use indoors and outside your home By PARIS WOLFE who are passionate about creating timeless designs. “We live and breathe interior design and love that our job lets us tell our clients’ story through their home,” Marissa says. Believing that a great home has the capacity to convey who we are and what we value most, Reflections expresses that through their designs. Each beautiful room and every perfect nook brings them closer to their goal of “it all coming together to tell a piece of our clients singular story.” To work with Marissa and her team please visit their website and reach out! www.reflectionsinteriordesign.net

We are Crooked River Building Supply Crooked River Building Supply was formed by Floyd Maxwell and Mike Kovach out of a shared passion and longevity in the building materials industry. After individual careers spanning decades spent growing relationships with builders, contractors, and homeowners in Northeast Ohio, they decided to build a team of the most qualified professionals in the industry. That collaboration of experts turned into Crooked River Building Supply, headquartered in Warrensville Heights, Ohio. The Crooked River team, led by Floyd and Mike, brings a collective of over 200 years of experience to the table. We believe every home is a sanctuary. Each detail should be executed with care and precision. That is why we have built a collaborative team of the most knowledgeable product experts and experienced carpenters in the industry. Together with you, we provide customized window, door, and millwork options and solutions, including the installation of Marvin windows and doors for replacement, to our partner clients across Northeast Ohio. Whether you are an architect, builder, or homeowner, we will work closely with you to determine the right products for your budget and your application. We are committed to educating you at every step of the process, from the initial product selection through the installation and beyond, making your vision for your home a reality. We understand that it can be overwhelming selecting the right products for your home whether you are building new, adding on, or renovating existing. Our team will help

Hardwood floors are trending, making rugs a natural flooring accessory. In fact, rugs have become so popular that they’re being used in outdoor spaces as well. Both areas benefit because rugs add a design element and soften a space. “Overall, rugs are big right now,” says Taylor Anderson, project manager at W Design in Chagrin Falls. “Clients want comfort, durability and beautiful design and with all that is currently available they truly can have it all.” Choosing a rug depends on the overall design of a home. “For traditional design we love to select beautiful wool rugs with complementary tones to the space,” Anderson notes. “Wool rugs have a long history of durability and longevity. Selecting a piece that has vintage or heirloom qualities can add to the home’s richness and maturity.” “If the space is more modern or transitional there are some beautiful geometric designs that can add interest

and ground the space,” says Anderson. “For these spaces we may choose a more muted palette and possibly the addition of silk to add luster and luxury.” Sarah Matters of Larchmere Oriental Rugs in Cleveland, adds, “In general, people prefer stronger colors in Northeast Ohio and softer colors in warmer climates.” When it comes to outdoor spaces durability is key. “We are seeing beautiful and incredibly durable options available for exteriors,” notes Anderson. “The biggest factor for any client including our NEO clients is what sort of environment are we working with. Lush vegetation, waterfront, beachfront, full sun or shade as well as seasonal changes which will affect the materials we select.” “Rugs needs to be beautiful, stand up to the elements and, of course, be comfortable,” she adds. “Polypropylene is often used for outdoor rugs and these rugs not only look stunning but can be hosed off or power washed.” Power washing may work outdoors, but indoor rugs should be professionally cleaned at least every three years to rid them of the build up of dust and spills, notes Matters.

Larchmere Oriental Rugs

you select products that complement one another while also honoring your unique style and material preferences. It is our priority to be a partner to our customers through every step of the construction process. Visit crookedriverbuildingsupply.com

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Spring is on the way – even if it comes slowly in Northeast Ohio. Oriental rugs are a wonderful way to bring color, design and texture into one’s interiors. No room is complete without a rug to bring it to life. At Larchmere Oriental Rugs we are happy to show clients examples of the many varied styles and designs we stock – be they new, vintage or antique rugs – pile or flat weaves, ornate and formal or geometric and tribal. The choices are many and the experience is an education. We have an inventory unrivaled in the region and you won’t regret making a visit to our store. Our rugs are made in Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, the Caucasus as well as Tibetan rugs made in Nepal. We carry traditional designs as well as more transitional, contemporary, abstract styles with some rugs having no design at all and maybe using one or two colors with the emphasis being on the ingredients of wool, weave and dyes creating the rugs’ appeal. We are happy to offer a unique hand washing service as well as the option to have repairs made to your own rugs, whether it is simple edges and ends unraveling or more extensive restoration work. We are able to do most every-

thing in house, although we can also send rugs overseas to our workshop in Turkey for major restoration work. We have a large inventory, but if a client is looking for a special size there is also the possibility of having a rug made to order. The wait time is anywhere between 4-6 months. Once you have determined which space in your home is in need of a rug, the most important information clients must bring with them on visiting the store are the dimensions of the piece you are looking for - without that crucial information it is very difficult to show rugs. These are all hand made pieces of textile art and each one is unique. We encourage people to take pieces home with them, if they like them in our store the chances are they will love them in their home. You can live with the rug for a couple days and see how they change from morning to night depending on the weather and the lighting. We are open from Tuesday through Saturday from 11am-6pm, Sundays from 12-5pm and closed on Mondays. We look forward to welcoming you to our store. Visity larchmererugs.com.

You can always tell a “Somrak” Kitchen

Painting has changed my life When I began painting again in early 2002, I didn’t know it would grow into such a wonderful life-changing experience for me. My pursuit of mastering my craft quickly became an obsession. I’ve traveled the south of France 11 times now to experience the landscapes and villages I wanted to paint. Provence is the perfect source of inspiration. My work is about reacting to color and shapes more than following a procedure. I want to feel something from what I do. Art should move us. Otherwise, what’s the point? My work is displayed locally in the Paris Room, Gravity Salon, Studio2, Tomato Grill, Birch Tree Photography and a soon-to-be-announced gallery in Chagrin. Interested buyers can call to arrange viewings in their home as well as my studio (Studio2, 151 Bell St., Chagrin Falls). My website includes all available paintings and drawings, display and show information. Facebook (Robert Crombie, Fine Artist) hosts many pieces as well. Commissions are welcome! You might like a painting of a favorite vacation memory or your home. My contact info is on my website, rhcrombie.com. Otherwise feel free to call 330.696.0815 for more information.

A kitchen remodel can pose some very difficult decisions. What finishes will be able to stand the test of time? Is the kitchen going to be able to age with you? Are you investing the appropriate amount in your home? How do you design an efficient space on a budget that also has that “wow” factor? This is only the tip of the iceberg of decisions you will most certainly encounter. So how do you do it? Well, you could read the hundreds of books on kitchen design, visit dozens of showrooms to learn about products, spend countless hours aside from your already hectic life. Or… you could enlist a professional kitchen designer to do the leg work for and ultimately make the process enjoyable from start to finish. With the expertise of our team, we can create innovative designs that are functional and aesthetically beautiful. We have been told by our customers and friends that you can always tell a “Somrak” kitchen, and that trait holds true because of the talented team of designers on our staff. At Somrak Kitchens, Inc., we make it possible to turn your dreams of having a custom kitchen into reality. Our team of sales designers at Somrak Kitchens are equipped with the tools, knowledge and talent to create exactly the kitchen you envision. With almost two centuries of combined experience, our award-winning team takes pride in its ability to develop innovative ideas and to create unique custom kitchens. The team at Somrak Kitchens stands out from the competition by keeping informed about the latest trends in kitchen design using only top-quality products, and then sharing that knowledge as a team on every project. The sales designers at Somrak Kitchens all have accredited degrees in their field and are then also trained by

the National Kitchen & Bath Association. Your remodel should be a fun and exciting adventure ending with a stunning kitchen that your family will enjoy for many years. Call us at 216.464.6500 or visit

the Somrak Kitchens showroom at 26201 Richmond Road or on our website at www.somrakkitchens.com or on our Houzz page to find out how we can help you on your next project!


SIGNATURE ULTIMATE DOUBLE-HUNG DOUBLE-HUNG Please contact Progressive Building Supply Progressive to explore all Please contact the window and door solutions Building Supply to explore all that Marvin has to offer for the window and door solutions replacement, remodel or new thatconstruction Marvin hasprojects. to offer for

replacement, remodel or new construction projects.

9911 Washington St Chagrin Falls, OH 440.543.1060 9911 Washington St

Chagrin Falls, OH 440.543.1060

www.currentsneo.com  March 18, 2021 CURRENTS B5

’Tis the season for spring cleaning, organizing inside and outside your home By PARIS WOLFE Spring cleaning is rooted in both ancient pagan and modern religious traditions. And most of these are “celebrated” between March 1 and April 30. The Persian New Year, for example, starts with the vernal equinox or first day of spring … around March 20. In preparation, Iranians traditionally cleaned the entire house. Chinese New Year requires similar preparation including discarding all trash and broken items. An ancient Jewish custom requires cleaning the house in preparation for Passover. Some Catholic traditions require cleaning the church on Thursday before Easter. Similar spring-cleaning traditions go back 3,000 years and have been observed in Scotland and Ireland as well. The symbolism of cleaning to prepare for the earth’s seasonal rebirth is rich and powerful. But then again it makes sense too. Before modern utilities, homeowners had to scrub away soot from fires and candles used during dark months.

Whatever the origin, it makes sense to thoroughly clean a home after months of winter lockdown. With the return of longer days, the Northeast Ohio sunshine makes visible all dust and dirt. Before you start cleaning, rid the house of clutter. Overwhelmed? Read (or reread) something by Marie Kondo for inspiration and motivation. Be sure to trash and donate as quickly as possible so you don’t change your mind. Also, repair and put away items for later use. Experts suggest taking a room-by-room approach. Take some time to create checklists for each room, focusing on areas that aren’t part of the regular cleaning cycle. That might include brushing the ceiling with a broom and washing walls and woodwork. If you are hiring someone, it’s helpful for them to have this list of your expectations. As you go room-by-room, store your winter clothes, bedding and décor. Replace it with warmer weather items for a fresh look. Include outdoor spaces and associated chores, like

cleaning the grill and patio furniture. If this extends to yardwork, be sure your landscapers know your expectations. A cleaning company and window washers can make short work of some tasks. In some cases, specialty vendors are good options. Fiber-Seal of Northern Ohio, for example, specializes in cleaning and protecting carpet, area rugs and fabrics like upholstery, curtains, patio cushions and more. They use hot-water extraction to remove soil and then treat items to resist stains and soiling. “We approach things in a preventative way to extend the life of the fabric and carpeting,” says owner Gavin Green. He urges a regular program of cleaning and maintenance. “By the time you see the soil it’s already done damage to the fabric and carpeting.” He says it makes sense to stay ahead of the dirt. “Every home is different. In some homes we visit three or four times a year to clean heavy-use areas,” he says. “We cus-

Spring into Action! … Home organization action, that is. With many of us spending more time than ever at home over the last year, Spring cleaning in 2021 takes on a whole new meaning! Maybe you have been very productive these last months, cleaning out your cupboards and closets, washing windows and floors, and maybe even taking on a renovation project or two. But there’s something about Spring that makes us want to spring into action and get ready for the warmer weather. It’s coming, I promise! Spring is a great time to scrutinize your wardrobe. Have you spent more time in sweatpants than you’d like to admit? Do your clothes still fit? Have you been a “workout wonder” who is now ready to be rewarded with a new, slimmer wardrobe? It’s time to set aside those cozy sweaters and boots to make way for summer dresses and sandals. But how do you put together the perfect outfit if you can’t find everything? Is your closet a mish-mash of boxes and bins? Can you even see the floor? Just as you spend valuable time and money on the right clothing and accessories, you should also consider how those items will be stored and displayed. Whether you have a small reach-in closet or a large walk-in, Closet Factory’s highly trained team of designers can help transform your space into your personal boutique where you will love “shopping” your wardrobe every day! Closets are not the only areas that may need a makeover. Spring is also a great time to purge, organize and evaluate your home office, pantry or garage. Closet Factory designers are trained to help in all of these areas and many others. Our designers work with you to determine how your space needs to function for You. Then we collaborate to create the look you want within the budget you need. Whatever your style – from Contemporary to Traditional, Rustic to Eclectic – let us bring the Art of Organiza-

tomize for the needs of the household.” Chandelier conservationist Chris Axelrod of Bratenahl is a fan of spring cleaning to improve the home and the spirit. “When your home is closed up for the winter you have heat, dust and cooking smoke from kitchens contributing to the condition of the house. Especially during COVID times with people cooking more and stirring up more dust.” “A chandelier is the obvious recipient of these elements,” he notes. His business preserves these delicate and lovely fixtures when they are assaulted by daily life. Axelrod spends hours using custom solutions to detail the prisms and infrastructure of elaborate crystal fixtures. He locates replacement crystals for those that are missing. “When the chandelier is glistening it gives a feeling of restoration,” he says. “When the chandelier glistens so does the client.” Spring cleaning is like that. Organization and cleanliness can be restorative to the soul.

Gilmour Academy Senior named candidate for United States Presidential Scholars Program

tion® to your home. No one offers more options or accessories than Closet Factory Cleveland. And no other local closet company has more experience than our design team. This means you receive expert advice and outstanding customer service from a designer who knows what they’re doing.

Let us help you tackle your custom closet and storage challenges. You will be ready to spring into action when Mother Nature gives the signal. Call Closet Factory at 216.362.4660 to schedule a complimentary in-home design consultation. ~Cindy Coulter, Closet Factory Cleveland

Joe Rottinghaus ’21, of Willoughby Hills, was recently notified that he has been named a candidate for the United States Presidential Scholars Program. Of the nearly 3.6 million students expected to graduate from U.S. high schools in 2021, only 4,500 were selected for this honor. The program was established in 1964 as a way to recognize some of the nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors. Scholars are selected on the basis of superior academic and/or artistic achievements, leadership qualities, strong character and involvement in community and school activities. Application to the program is by invitation only. Candidates then complete and submit candidacy materials for review, including essays, self-assessments, secondary school reports and transcripts. A distinguished panel of educators will review these submissions and select approximately 600 semifinalists in early April. The Commission on Presidential Scholars, a group of up to 32 eminent citizens appointed by the President, will select the finalists, and the U.S. Department of Education will announce the Scholars in May. Rottinghaus is currently undecided on his college but plans to pursue a STEM-related degree. About Gilmour Academy Gilmour Academy is a Catholic, independent, coeducational, college-preparatory school. It is sponsored by the Congregation of Holy Cross, Notre Dame, Ind., and offers a Montessori program beginning at 18-monthsold and a Lower School, Middle School and Upper School. A boarding program is offered to students in Grades 7 through 12. It is located at 34001 Cedar Road in Gates Mills, Ohio. For more information about Gilmour Academy, visit www.gilmour.org and follow Gilmour on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


At Reflections, different is good and different is what we seek in our interiors - no two homes ever look alike because no two clients ever do.



TO REALITY KATHLEEN BLISS GOLDFARB , ASID SUZANNE HOWE , PMP 440.668.2650 WOW@decoratingden.com www.WOW.decoratingden.com

B6 CURRENTS March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

Meet The Valley Design Team!

Tyler Wien is now the fourth brother to join Marshall Carpet One & Rug Gallery’s third generation. With the help of Tyler’s flooring expertise, you’re sure to find the perfect option for you’re home. (Shown L. to R. – Tyler, Matt, Marc, Ryan and Nate Wien.)

Kathleen Bliss Goldfarb, ASID, NCIDQ is the veteran Owner and Director of Design of The Valley Design Team | Decorating Den Interiors. Kathleen and team are the area’s only award-winning, experienced residential and commercial design professionals offering concierge level service, proud of their top credentials and a stellar record for over four decades. The team has recently expanded with the addition of designer, Suzanne Howe, PMP and Marketing & Resource Specialist, Kylie Emig. Together, this conscientious, passionate and innovative team will transform your ideas from inspiration to reality! The team provides comprehensive service as your one-stop shop and always saves you time and mistakes, focusing on your priorities and value every step of the way. Consultations are available in-person and virtually as unique design solutions are developed, truly reflecting your personality, aesthetic and functional requirements. Check-out our clients’ words… “It’s been a rewarding experience working together! Kathleen’s diligence and countless hours of research for fabrics, colors, shades, lighting to achieve our desired look was the key to our total satisfaction. Her years of experience protected us from making errors selecting durable fabrics for our furniture. She makes it fun to see it all materialize as we had envisioned! She’s made our house a home.” Tom S “If you are seeking fun, knowledgeable interior designers, with an extraordinary eye for detail, customer satisfaction focused and a team who listens and collaborates with you to create the vision of your dreams, The

Valley Design Team is your perfect partner.” Tony P “They respected my budget, stayed within my means and are truly talented with so many fine lines. They do it all! I am so happy, as are my guests!” Paula Y You are the best! Thanks for making my home look like a resort destination. I am so in love with every detail. My husband adores the globe floor lamp...LOL PS: You guys are so much fun! Bonnie R “The Valley Design Team listened to my goals, accommodating me into their busy schedule. Overall, you can’t miss when working with them. I am very satisfied with their professionalism, personal interest and all of their furnishings offerings. When Kathleen arrived at our home, she had everything needed to help me make decisions and our process moved seamlessly.” Nicki H No project is too big or too small! We do it all! Connect with us! Texts and calls are welcome! www.WOW. decoratingden.com, 440.668.2650

50th anniversary brings big plans and changes for Valley Art Center Now in its 50th year, Valley Art Center (VAC) announces that big things are in the works! MARY ANN BREISCH TO RETIRE-SEARCH FOR NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR TO BEGIN Executive Director Mary Ann Breisch will retire from her position as the leader of the organization this year. Ms. Breisch has led the organization since 2013 in addition to serving as Program Facilitator in the 90’s. Mary Ann Breisch is a seasoned arts educator and nonprofit executive who has provided leadership and instruction for nonprofit education and arts organizations for more than 20 years. Ms. Breisch’s extensive experience in the development of multidisciplinary arts programming, visual arts education and community partnerships informed her work at VAC. Ms. Breisch heightened the awareness of the organization in the regional landscape on a number of fronts. Her work included overseeing the completion of the first sanctioned outdoor mural in the Village of Chagrin Falls, increasing community partnerships, broadening and expanding visual arts programming, strengthening the organizational structure, and enhancing the facility. The pandemic brought challenges that inspired Ms. Breisch to lead the organization to design virtual educational programming; distance learning; online gallery and gift shop stores; new community collaborations; and a reimagined Art by the Falls, VAC’s flagship outdoor art festival. Says Ms. Breisch of her decision to retire from her current role, “I have so enjoyed leading VAC at this moment in time---here we are at 50 years! The opportunity to connect the community to the essential process of making art, learning about art and sharing art has been so meaningful to me. VAC is thriving because of the interest and support of a multitude of champions-our staff, board, instructors, artists, volunteers, local and regional partners, and friends of the arts. I am eager to see what vision and skills the next leader can bring to this vital organization.” Moving

forward, Ms. Breisch plans to concentrate on creative community projects that focus on art and equity. Board of Trustees President Laurie Dean had this to say. “The Valley Art Center has been fortunate to have Mary Ann’s incredible talents and skills that helped lead us into the 21st century and create a stronger, focused and thriving art center that future generations will be proud of.” In Mary Ann’s honor, the board will be establishing a fund to benefit Valley Art Center. A search for a new director will begin in March. The search committee will be headed by VAC Board Vice President Kim Zarney, Artist/Owner, Zarney Originals, LLC. VALLEY ART CENTER MOURNS THE PASSING OF LOIS SALMON TOOLE Lois Salmon Toole was a visionary Valley Art Center (VAC) artist, patron and volunteer who began as a VAC student and went on to become internationally known for her transparent watercolors. Lois and a handful of other VAC artists launched the first Art by the Falls in Chagrin Falls’ Triangle Park 40 years ago, setting the stage for what was to become a premiere outdoor art festival. Lois’s work was featured in VAC’s gallery many times including several Annual Juried Exhibitions and most recently in 2020 in VAC’s 50th Anniversary “Visionaries” exhibit honoring the founding artists of the organization. Lois served on the VAC’s Board of Trustees as well as the Advisory Board. She and Dave were honorary co-chairs of a 2017 fundraiser for VAC at which they were honored for their many years of service. Lois will be greatly missed. With gratitude for the generosity of the Toole Family and friends, VAC has established a “Lois Salmon Toole Memorial Fund” to honor her legacy. COMMUNITY ART PROJECT Originally set to launch at Art by the Falls, 2020, Valley Art Center has engaged internationally known fiber artist Carol Hummel to include the community in a temporary outdoor art installation that involves creating individually

crocheted pieces to come together as a whole. The pieces will be used to wrap the trees in front of the Valley Art Center to make a colorful and inspiring Spring display to share with the public at 155 Bell Street. VAC GALLERY DOUBLE FEATURE: ILLUSTRIOUS ALUM AND WHISKY PAINTERS OF AMERICA EXHIBITS ON VIEW APRIL 2-May 12 “Illustrious Alum” will feature the work of artists who got their start at VAC and went on to national and international acclaim. Artists include Judith Brandon, mixed media landscape artist; H. Craig Hanna, landscape and figurative painter; Jeremey Galante, animation artist; Kate Kaman, sculptor; Judy Takacs, figurative painter; and Sam Waterson, creator of Calvin and Hobbes. “Whisky Painters of America” explores the foundations of Valley Art Center, with the association of VAC founding member, Florian K. Lawton and early members and VAC artists Lois Salmon Toole and Darlene Jackson. A genuine Whiskey Painting consists of painting a miniature piece of art no larger than 4” X 5” with watercolor pigment, dipping your brush in some form of alcoholic spirits, then possibly sipping the alcohol, thereby enhancing the painting experience. REIMAGINED ART BY THE FALLS GALLERY EXHIBIT AND POP-UP EVENTS VAC is finding new ways to bring art to the region despite the challenges the pandemic has brought us. In light of necessary COVID-19 precautions, VAC is staging Art by the Falls in a series of gallery exhibitions at 155 Bell St. in Chagrin Falls this summer. Every artist who was accepted to the festival for June of 2020 is invited to exhibit and sell their work in the gallery this summer. There will be 2 separate 5-week exhibits: June 4-July 7 and July 23- September 1. All artwork will be for sale onsite as well as in VAC’s online gallery store. The shows will include a virtual gallery walk through. In addition, VAC will offer pop-up events onsite and at local farmers

markets throughout the summer. PLENTY OF ONSITE AND VIRTUAL EDUCATIONAL OFFERINGS AVAILBLE VAC opened to the public on July 1, 2020, though it was not business as usual. Like many organizations, our teachers pivoted to tailor learning experiences in response to the pandemic. There is rich selection of onsite and virtual options to choose from for children and adults. Summer camps for children will include a variety of fun and engaging options. Especially exciting are our new adult pottery offerings in our refurbished, COVID-modified studio. Jerod Gabriel is an accomplished ceramic artist who comes to us from Montana and his classes in wheel throwing are sure to get you inspired. Carla Guseilo is a local award-winning artist whose offerings focus on hand building and glazing techniques. Contact the Valley Art Center at 440.247.7507 or valleyartcenter.org. VAC is located at 155 Bell Street in Chagrin Falls. Valley Art Center (VAC) enriches and inspires the community through meaningful visual art education, exhibitions, events, and partnerships. VAC, a 501c3 nonprofit organization with 50 years of history, continues to thrive as the hub of the visual arts in the Chagrin Valley. Each year, VAC offers over 400 classes, workshops, and summer camps for students, from children to seniors who range from beginner to seasoned professional. VAC offers year-round onsite, offsite, and virtual classes in drawing, painting, ceramics, printmaking, sculpture, photography, jewelry, metalwork, textiles, and more. VAC’s gallery hosts over 5 exhibits annually with curated, invitational, and juried shows. VAC’s calls-to-entry draw local, regional, and national artists from the Cleveland area and beyond. The Valley Art Center Gift Shop and gallery host hundreds of unique original pieces of art for sale. VAC is engaged in numerous local and regional community partnerships.

FINE INTERIORS Auction 4.10.21 featuring the property of a Gentleman Robert Crombie, Fine Artist www.rhcrombie.com 330-696-0815 Robert Crombie, Fine Artist

Neue Auctions, located in the Ohio Design Centre, 23533 Mercantile Rd. #100 www.neueauctions.com, 216-245-6707, open weekdays 9 to 5 Estimators & appraisers specializing in fine art, antiques & jewelry

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We Make the Details Matter!

An old tradition becomes a new trend WOLFS is a large, rambling gallery on the east side of Cleveland dealing with exceptional fine and decorative arts from the 17th Century to the present. The gallery features collections and estates from numerous exceptionally talented artists including many of the fine painters from the rich world of the Cleveland School. This last year, however, has brought challenges and changes to our gallery as it has to so many other businesses everywhere. The global pandemic cloud has been long and dark. The silver lining, though, appears to be bright. With so many people now working from home and hunkering down to make the best of home-based family and social life, some very beneficial changes to our society are developing. For example, gridlocked freeways, bulging city centers and near impossible public transportation have dramatically become more manageable. As businesses around the world continue to embrace a home-based business model,

much of what’s changing for the better like the new focus on beautiful surroundings, will certainly remain. Our contemporary home environment, much like the 19th Century home, has taken on new prominence, and for many is again becoming the center of the universe. Interior design, home offices, proper furnishings, art on the walls – everything that makes one’s home unique becomes a compelling priority. Monies once spent on commuting, lunches and dressing for work are now being reinvested in the quality and comfort of our living space. Stopping to smell the roses and properly feathering our nests has brought many new collectors to our world. For WOLFS, this re- focus on home is good for business, of course. But what is even more gratifying is the endorsement of our mission, the search for and placement of truly wonderful artwork for our clients. WOLFS, www.wolfsgallery.com.

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At Timan Custom Window Treatments, we are family owned and locally operated and we take our longterm commitment to the community seriously. We are experienced window covering professionals that are expertly trained to answer all your questions, from measurements and right product selection to financing and installation. When you visit the Timan Custom Window Treatments showroom you will enjoy a personal experience. Let us be your guide! When you visit our new and improved Chagrin Falls showroom, you’ll browse products, fabrics and features. You’ll try out the latest in smart shades and smart home integration. But, the experience doesn’t end there! We have window covering specialists on-site to talk with you about your needs. We can answer questions and help direct you to collections and features that make the most sense for you and your family. We’ll be happy to guide you through the smart home features, showing you just how simple Hunter Douglas is making it to improve the experience of motorized shades. What’s New in the world of Window Treatments? Everything power, of course! With the rise of smart home technology being such a sought-after feature, we knew it was important to improve the smart shades experience for each and every customer. Hunter Douglas PowerView Automation is simple to operate, and yet it performs with layers of lifestyle convenience, efficiency and safety. What’s Next? After visiting the showroom, set up your FREE inhome design consultation. This is where the styling and measurements take place. And, the best place to make final decisions about your home is always within the walls of your home! At Timan Custom Window Treatments, we don’t just want you to enjoy the window treatments once they’re in your home. We strive to make the entire experience one to remember, from beginning to end. Design Trend: Our favorite trend is texture! We offer

Glare on your computer screen? Never noticed how much midday sun your office gets until now? Let us help you make working from home a pleasure. it all from traditional grasscloths to grounded natural textures. Whether in bold color, pattern or neutrals, we are loving the results of adding texture to our clients’ window treatments. As many homeowners jump into their spring refresh, we encourage you to consider adding texture which - along with layering- adds so much depth to not just the windows but the design of the space. Visit timanwindowtreatments.com.

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Fabulous Shaker Heights home full of original architectural details for sale

A timeless beauty, this Shaker colonial has style to spare inside and out.

By RITA KUEBER This traditional Shaker Heights colonial is full of treasures, from the original plaster relief work, wainscoting and crown molding, to the gleaming hardwood floors, a marble and glass solarium, and amenities and conveniences throughout. But more, this classic beauty is architecturally graceful, the rooms flowing one into the other effortlessly. Every part of the home is awash in natural light, enhanced by tasteful, understated hues on walls and ceilings. For all its size and grandeur, this structure has a transcendent sense of serenity and light. Every room seems to have a kind of warm, cordial radiance. The circular drive, pillared façade and twin staircase to the front entrance are just hints of the splendors inside. A two-story rotunda entryway and its elegant, curved wood staircase are topped by a luminous stained-glass oval ceiling, all golds and whites. The formal living room has an arched entry, fireplace, tall windows, and ends in a curved wall at the far end. This room adjoins a half-circle marble-floored solarium that overlooks the landscaped back yard. Curves and circles are featured prominently throughout the house. The sunroom leads to a wood-paneled library/den that has built-in shelves and a fireplace. Through this welcoming room is the formal dining room, also accessible from the foyer, with a marble-framed fire place, and ornate plaster medallion set in the ceiling, anchoring the crystal chandelier. The back of the dining room opens into a stunning, open family room that has arched entry points and walls of windows. Once a summer porch, this room is now part of the kitchen suite that includes an eat-in area, plus a huge bar/butler’s pantry that has the original leaded-glass fronted cupboards. The working part of the kitchen is a charming mix of old and new, gleaming white cupboards and stainless steel surfaces. The granite-topped island has its own sink as well as a breakfast bar, storage and shelves. The kitchen has a large farmer’s sink, Wolf eight-burner range, and built-in appliances. One wall holds a low counter with home office space. Behind the kitchen are laundry and mud rooms, and access to the garage and back staircase.

A spacious butler’s pantry features marble backsplash,sink and wine cooler, as well as leaded glass cabinets.

The two-story foyer has a graceful curved staircase and is crowned with a unique, stained-glass oval ceiling.

The working kitchen blends old fashioned working spaces with up-to-the-minute finishes and appliances.

Buffering the transition from formal dining room to kitchen at the back of the house is a wood paneled den with fireplace.

The master suite includes a spacious bedroom with its own marble-fronted fireplace.

Upstairs, the master suite includes a spacious bedroom with fireplace, two dressing rooms, sitting room, a private office, and a triangular master bath with pink marble accents. All six bedrooms are on the second story, a level that includes an additional laundry room and bonus room, as well as a cozy nook at the top of the front stairs, and a common loft/TV room at the top of the back stairs. The lower level includes a large game or rec room paneled in knotty pine and its own fireplace trimmed in brick.

And off this main room is a surprise – a “speakeasy,” with red-leather upholstered walls, curved wood bar and open shelves. Unexpected? Possibly, but most likely historically accurate, as the house was designed during Prohibition, and built in 1937. 18200 South Park has 8,894 square feet of space including six bedrooms, eleven baths (six full, five half), and five fireplaces over two stories. The house also has a four-car attached garage, central air, and zoned heating.

The private lot, just over an acre, has an in-ground pool and a separate pool house that includes a great room, bedroom, full bath and kitchenette. Situated between Shaker and Fairmount Boulevards, the house is minutes from University Circle, shopping and dining. Represented by Adam Kaufman of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services, 18200 South Park is listed at $2,850,000 at press time. Annual taxes are $48,105. Contact Adam Kaufman at 216.831.7370, or adamkaufman@howardhanna.com.

James and Angela Hambrick Foundation donates $2 Million to fund Care Solutions Center for Hospice of the Western Reserve Hospice of the Western Reserve has announced plans to launch a $3.25 million technologically advanced Care Solutions Center, which will dramatically expand access to hospice and palliative care within the nonprofit agency’s 10-county Northern Ohio service area. The new center is funded through a leadership gift of $2 million from the James and Angela Hambrick Foundation along with matching grants from the Elisabeth Severance Prentiss Foundation and The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation. “We are so grateful to James and Angela Hambrick for their vision and their support,” said Laura Rayburn, president of the Hospice of the Western Reserve Foundation. “Their gift not only allowed us to immediately begin the construction and implementation of this transformational project; it also made it possible for us to raise the full amount required to bring the Care Solutions Center into operation. We are deeply appreciative to all three foundations for their ongoing generous support of our mission in the community.” James Hambrick, a long-time supporter and previous member of the board of directors said: “Angela and I have

seen first-hand the life-changing impact of Hospice of the Western Reserve’s care for patients and families. We are honored that our gift will play a key role in helping more families quickly and easily access the quality care everyone deserves through the advanced capabilities of this innovative Care Solutions Center.” The 4,000-square-foot facility will be located at Hospice of the Western Reserve’s headquarters at 17876 St. Clair Ave. in Cleveland and employ 48 people, including current employees who join the Care Service Center Team. Construction and buildout have begun. Hiring, training and system testing will be occurring throughout the year. The Care Solutions Center is expected to be fully operational by the first quarter of 2022. The demand for hospice care in Northeast Ohio has increased dramatically in the last 15 years. At the same time, the daily reimbursement rate for hospice care is decreasing. The new technology will play an essential role in allowing HWR to expand access to all of the services it offers, including hospice care, the Western Reserve Navigator palliative care program, pediatric hospice and pal-

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liative care and community-wide bereavement support. The new center will eliminate administrative tasks and improve response time. Agents will have everything at their fingertips to handle questions and care requests. In-

creased connectivity will mean HWR providers can coordinate, dispatch clinicians and problem-solve faster than ever. Physicians and community referral sources will be able to offer their patients faster enrollments.

Realtors suggest best home improvement projects for return on investment By PARIS WOLFE With low interest rates and lifestyle changes spurred by the pandemic, this is one of the hottest residential real estate markets in recent memory. Despite an ample supply of buyers, homes still need attention to aesthetics. Naturally, they need decluttering and, probably, some staging. Actual construction or remodeling is situational. “Homes all need a little attention here and there. Just what depends on the house, the age of the house and the decorating,” says Susan Delaney, realtor with Howard Hanna who works from Shaker Heights to cover the “river to the valley.” “Every once in a while, the market gets a gift and the house needs nothing, but not often,” she says. She points to kitchens, bathrooms, and bedrooms as most important to buyers. Any improvements there will improve salability, though there’s no guarantee of full financial return.

In fact, it’s difficult to determine what construction projects may pay returns. “In this market, our usual advice has gone out the window because inventory is low,” she says. “Houses are being sold that I didn’t think would get sold.” Ryan Young, of The Young Team at Keller Williams covers the Chagrin Valley area. He says he’s never seen a market like this in 11 years as a realtor. “Right now, interest rates are lower than historical lows and buyers are comfortable overpaying for move-in ready or a house that requires less work,” he says. He sees a strong return on investment when it comes to improvements. “The biggest things with the largest return are the kitchen and master suite,” he says. “It’s easier for a buyer to redo a powder room or a kid’s bedroom. It’s more intimidating for that buyer to tackle a kitchen or master bath.” For the kitchen, depending on the age of the space and

the size of the house, Young says, “You have to do the entire thing. It can be detrimental to just do the countertops. Buyers will still want to redo the cabinets. If you’re doing to do it, open up the space and you’ll get a good return on the investment.” If redoing space, he says remember how the pandemic has changed lifestyles and consider creating a space for kids to do schoolwork. And, finally, one of the least expensive improvements is painting, something he recommends, noting “People want light and bright.” Veena Bhupali, realtor with RE/MAX Traditions in Beachwood, says buyer expectations vary by price range and personal financial situation. “For different price ranges there are different expectations,” she says. “In the luxury market, for example, buyers expect current colors, countertops and appliances. Bathrooms need bells and whistles.” “Buyers are happy when the kitchen is already done,”

she says. “Spending money there is probably the biggest return on investment. The seller probably will not get 100 percent back, but they will get a faster sale and a better price. Those are the benefits you get by doing some things that are newer.” “I tell the seller to focus on their demographic, the person coming to buy,” she explains. “They don’t want to pay for 20-year-old finishes.” As examples, she says wallpaper border and swag drapes are out. Updates could be as simple as replacing mirrors or lights to give a bathroom a lift. Or maybe updating faucets and knobs to the latest finishes. “If you’re in the market for changing anything, concentrate there,” she says. “Also, consider comfort- height toilets. It’s the little things that people are noticing that make a difference.”

Cleveland Play House announces new interim Managing Director and CFO Cleveland Play House is pleased to announce the leadership plan to support the 105-year-old institution’s executive management for the remainder of the 20202021 operating season. This plan brings to the CPH team an Interim Managing Director and a Chief Financial Officer. After a thoughtful process involving both Cleveland Play House Board of Directors and Staff, CPH today announces the appointments of Collette Appolito Laisure as Interim Managing Director and Anita H. Cook as Chief Financial Officer. Laisure and Cook will lend their leadership and executive expertise to the 2015 Regional Theatre Tony Award recipient for the next several months to address organizational needs and pave the way for a smooth transition to a permanent Managing Director. Both women will also participate in CPH’s ongoing equity, diversity, inclusion and antiracism efforts. The CPH Board of Directors plan to begin a national search for a permanent Managing Director in the spring of 2021. Interim Managing Director Collette A. Laisure will partner with Board Chair Anne Marie Warren and Artistic Director Laura Kepley to support the Board and Staff with overall business operations. Laisure and Kepley will co-lead the organization during the transitional period. Previously, Laisure served as Vice President and Executive Director of the PNC Fairfax Connection from 2012 to 2017, spearheading the strategic and operational direction of the thriving community resource center located in Cleveland’s Fairfax neighborhood. Collette served as the President and Executive Director of The Presidents’ Council and has held board leadership roles at UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Foundation, Cleveland Public Theatre, Fairfax Renaissance Development Corporation and Karamu House. Laisure also served as Director of The City of Cleveland’s Office of Equal Opportunity, where she managed a budget of $1 million and was responsible for administering and monitoring compliance with the Female- and Minorityowned Business Enterprise program. She is a member of Leadership Cleveland’s Class of 2008, and a 2008 Crain’s Cleveland Business Woman of Note. Board Chair, Anne Marie Warren says, “Collette brings an extensive resume of non-profit executive leadership, a decade of board and committee service to Cleveland theatres, and deep connections to the Fairfax neighborhood and The Presidents’ Council.” Artistic Director Laura Kepley says, “I am grateful to CPH Board Chair Anne Marie Warren and the Executive Committee for creating this thoughtful interim plan to support the staff and the organization during this time of transition. The pandemic still has us navigating a good deal of uncertainty, but Collette’s calm, open, collaborative nature and her years of leadership experience will help steer the ship though these choppy waters. I look forward to partnering with her on our exciting plans for CPH’s return to in-person programming.” Chief Financial Officer Anita H. Cook steps into the new leadership position at CPH to assist the Interim Managing Director and Board Executive Committee with CPH’s financial operations. CPH’s new CFO position will report to the Interim Managing Director. Cook has had diverse experiences leading the strategic planning and financial stability of prominent service agencies in Greater Cleveland. A retired CPA, Cook served as Executive Director of West Side Catholic Center from 2011 to 2017, where she successfully led a historic $2 million capital campaign for the Ohio City institution. A resident of Cleveland, she serves on the boards of Better Health Partnership, Neighborhood Family Practice and Community of Hope, as well as the finance committee of the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless. Cook is also a member of Leadership Cleveland’s Class of 2014. With the sudden and unexpected loss of former Managing Director Kevin Moore on October 24, 2020, the CPH Board Executive Committee began the process of creating an interim plan to support the company in December 2020. The Committee reviewed over 50 candidates. An interview team comprised of CPH Board and Staff were deeply impressed with Laisure and Cook. Warren says, “Both of these talented women are well-known and trusted in the community, have notfor-profit executive leadership experience, a love of

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theatre, and will bring open, steady, and collaborative approaches to the work ahead.” Warren continues, “both women will be a tremendous asset to CPH over the next 6 months while the company searches for a permanent Managing Director.” Both Laisure and Cook assumed their new roles at CPH on February 15, 2021. ABOUT CLEVELAND PLAY HOUSE CLEVELAND PLAY HOUSE, founded in 1915 and recipient of the 2015 Regional Theatre Tony Award, is America’s first professional regional theatre. Throughout its rich history, CPH has remained dedicated to its mission to inspire, stimulate, and entertain diverse audiences across Northeast Ohio by producing plays and theatre education programs of the highest professional standards. CPH has produced more than 100 world and/or American premieres, and over its long history more than 12 million people have attended over 1,600 productions. Today, Cleveland Play House celebrates the beginning of its second century of service while performing in three state-of-the art venues at Playhouse Square in downtown Cleveland. Cleveland Play House is made possible in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council (OAC). The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. Cleveland Play House is supported in part by the residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. To learn more, visit: www. clevelandplayhouse.com.

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SHAKER HEIGHTS … Architectural details, craftsmanship, and quality materials are hallmarks of this home. One of the best locations! Susan Delaney, Howard Hanna Real Estate, 216.577.8700 or susandelaney@howardhanna.com.

!! D L SO Shaker Heights

Fine Homes & Luxury Properties


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Lifestyle changes brought about by pandemic create increase in demand for homes, new construction By MAREN JAMES First, perspective: In years past, the 20-person crew at the Young Team had something like 75 active listings. This year they have 15. “Anything listed goes under contract, typically in one day,” says principal Ryan Young. “This is the craziest market I’ve seen,” Young states. “From March to May 2020 we missed months of inventory. People simply weren’t selling, yet buyers never stopped. In fact, there were more buyers entering the market, creating a major shortage of homes. We’ve been playing catch-up for the last year. “Look how the typical lifestyle has changed,” he remarks. “People work from home. Kids go to school from home. There’s no summer camp, pool or movie theater open. When you spend a lot of time at home you need extra spaces like a bigger back yard, a pool, a finished basement, a home office. Then consider all the people not taking vacations or eating out. People are ready for a change, and if they haven’t been impacted by a layoff or downsizing, there are a lot of people who are financially very stable.” Young describes how there are many willing sellers, but no place for them to go. “I have clients who would sell their home tomorrow if they could find something to move into. It’s a big domino effect. Plus, there are a lot of out-of-state buyers coming in from the West Coast, New York City and other big cities. I mean, why live in a onebedroom condo in a shut-down city when for the same amount of money you could have a 4,000-square-foot house on an acre of land?” While the shortage continues, the solution for some buyers, many now exhausted by their search for a new home, is to make the decision to build. “Building adds more inventory to the market and takes a little bit of pressure off the sellers’ market,” Young says. “It’s an ‘I’ll just do it myself’ response.” There’s an expense that comes with building,” Young acknowledges. “But people who are just tired – they’re choosing a custom home.” Young points to upscale design/construction firms like Kingdom Home Builders LLC, owned by Jeff Halpern. Besides recent upscale cluster-home projects like Bridgeport, Halpern focuses on custom design/build single family homes, most often in the Chagrin Valley, but in Brecksville, the west side and further south, Media, as well. “In this market, houses 40 to 50 years old are either gutted and transformed, or torn down to make way for new construction,” Halpern says. ”I get that phone call several times a week. Do I know of either an empty lot in a good location or something that needs to go?” These days new construction is just as prevalent as major refurbishment.”I have clients that buy something and just replace it,” Halpern says. “I also have clients who buy something at maybe $500 to $750K who put that amount and even more into a new first floor master suite, an updated kitchen, outdoor tiered patios, and even custom rooms like indoor basketball courts. And there are all levels of construction – literally every kind of home at different price points – full custom,

In a sellers’ market buyers often become builders. Bridgeport, an upscale new construction cluster community is a current example of Kingdom Home Builders high quality design/build homes. semi-custom, full maintenance, some maintenance – we are seeing everything,” he says. He acknowledges not every family can move in 60 days. “Some people can land at their parents’ and stay for awhile; they’re not in a hurry. But others, with small kids and dogs, even with a big check for selling your house, where can you go? In short, Young says: “Anyone thinking about selling should sell. Anyone who owns a second home should sell it now. It really is the ‘Roaring 20’s” he says. At Bridgeport, Kingdom Home Builders offers a wide array of design elements and finishes, creating a custom-built home.

Crafted architectural details and deluxe finishes set Bridgeport construction apart.










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C4  CURRENTS  March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com





www.currentsneo.com  March 18, 2021 CURRENTS C5

Shop now for your outdoor furniture, especially if you plan to custom order If you’re preparing a new look for 2021’s outdoor living spaces, start shopping now. A variety of worldwide circumstances caused by the pandemic have made the experience a different one in 2021. For starters, more people are turning to their backyards as living and entertaining space because travel and dining out are limited. And that increases demand for home goods. Meanwhile, issues of staffing, spacing and safety measures are complicating production capacity. With more demand and less supply, plans and expectations may need some adjustment. Patty Horner, marketing director at Wayside Furniture in Akron, says “Reserve in-stock merchandise early. If you are going to custom order something, prepare to wait three to six months for items that normally take 30 to 60 days.” In addition to custom, Wayside and Sedlak Interiors in Solon offers an array of in-stock furniture with more style and scale than most big-box chain stores. That variety is a bonus. Rules don’t exist for picking a style. “As with most fashion over the last several years, everything goes,” says Horner. “If you like it for you and your personality, then that’s the trend. However, some of the more popular items include grey and blue colors as well as wood or woodlook materials.” “All seating arrangements are popular. but sectionals

Shop now to find durable, functional pieces for tesy of Wayside Furniture) seem to be stronger every year,’ she says. “Likewise, larger dining tables and high, easy-to-eat from cocktail tables are in demand.” Lisa Liccardi, senior designer with W Design in Chagrin Falls, recommends starting on your outdoor space as soon as you can for the same reason Horner mentions …

outdoor living this season. (Photograph courlonger lead times on custom orders. “Our clients have been spending more time in their homes because of COVID and are excited to find ways to be outdoors,” she says. “Transforming their outdoor spaces into places for the perfect patio night, small dinner party, or intimate night in has been our focus.”

Make the most of your outdoor spaces this season with attractive landscaping When you think about getting outdoors this spring, think about making the most of your outdoor spaces. “COVID has caused people to spend more time at home. They aren’t traveling. They aren’t going out like they once were. They are looking to us to create a ‘staycation’ in their own backyards with outdoor kitchens and bars,” Tony Nasrallah, president and founder of Ground Works Land Design said. “Our business was up 20 percent last year and we are projecting a 23 percent increase this year. In spring of 2020, we were getting 100 calls a week from potential customers asking us to help them utilize their outdoor space.” “We come to you to create an extension of your home. Our outdoor living spaces are an addition to your home. We help you to utilize your patio more. We can create a veranda with a fireplace, install heaters, build outdoor kitchens and sit-down lounges that can be used eight or nine months out of the year. We install sinks, grills, smokers, refrigerators, bar stools, firepits, outside TVs and surround sound,” he said. Other Ground Works services that complement outdoor living spaces are seating walls, pergolas, fire and water features and pool decking. To help you visualize what your new landscape design project will actually look like on your property, Nasrallah said his designers create a realistic mockup. “Our designers meet with the clients to talk about their vision. Their two-dimensional and three-dimensional designs show the client exactly what they will be getting, right down to the fire in the firepit,” he explained. “What is great is that everything is unique and different, based on the wants, needs and styles of the client.” Nasrallah said he has three landscape designers on staff and two of them are land-

scape architects. He added that half of his business is creating outdoor living spaces and the other half is maintaining these beautiful spaces once they are built. “If you have a project in mind for summer, you should call to schedule right away. “This is a very hot market for landscaping right now. We can also help you enhance your existing landscaping with LED lighting, to make your home appear cozier and more relaxing,” he said. ”A lot of people are modernizing their home and landscaping, to give it a clean look and make it lower maintenance.” Lighting adds an extra element to your outdoor space, while beautifying and securing your property, Nasrallah said. Whether it is to increase the focus on a particular landscape feature, or to provide additional safety on pathways, lighting can be installed as part of an overall landscape design or simply added to an existing landscape. Ground Works is an authorized installer for Kichler lighting products. Kichler systems use LED bulbs. They utilize 10 watts, instead of 60 to 100 watts. “An entire Kichler Pro system can run on the same wattage of a single, outdated bulb. They also run on timers, or photocells, to most effectively operate your system during different times of the year,” he said. Ground Works offers the option of coming to your home to demonstrate the lights, placing them around the yard in areas that you are considering having illuminated. Nasrallah said that Ground Works started as a side job to make extra money when he was in college. “I did a little landscaping and side work for friends and neighbors, using tools from my parents’ garage. But, I saw the bigger picture in it, “ he said. He established Ground Works Land Design as a business in 2009. The business has grown over 11 years to employ 45 craftsmen. The company is


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Lighting adds an extra element to your outdoor space, while beautifying and securing your property. (Photograph provided by Ground Works Land Design) in the process of moving to a larger facility in Avon, OH. Phone 440.930.8400 or visit www.groundworkslanddesign.com.


2 Bed, 2.1 Bath. Resort Living in “THE VILLAGE!” 2 story end unit with 1st floor master, vaulted great room with wood deck. Kitchen and dining area with ceramic tile and skylights. Oversize Master with glamour bath with Jacuzzi tub and stall shower. Media room in upper loft, plus office. Spacious guest suite with full bath also on upper level. All of the amenities of The Village including lakes, trails, gated 24 hour security, fitness center, tennis and pool. $349,900 | Sharon Friedman | 216-338-3233

4 bed, 2.0 bath. Welcome to this split-level home in Beachwood! First floor master bedroom. Many updates! Seller has put over 100K of improvements in the last 2 years including new roof, siding, A/C, H2O tank, sewer line, refrigerator, stove and landscaping. Great location. Close to freeway, hospital and shopping. Home sits on nearly a half acre park like lot. Move right in! $307,000 | Jeff Kraig | 440-567-1267


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The Cleveland Kosher Food Pantry opened two temporary trailers for use on its property at 2004 South Green Road, South Euclid. Mezuzahs were hung on the trailers on Sunday, January 17. “We want to thank Harley Cohen and all of the contractors who helped us get this important project done. Without them and our generous donors, we would not be able to continue to serve our clients during the typical Cleveland winter,” said Director Devorah Alevsky. Harley Cohen is principal of Harlan & Associates of Beachwood who managed the project. The Cleveland Kosher Food Pantry is one of the largest food relief agencies in Northeastern Ohio and is a partner agency of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. COVID-19 has dramatically increased the number of clients served to over 6,000 per month. The Pantry’s client base includes many from the suburbs who now find themselves needing community support for the very first time. Its weekly drive-through distribution serves 150 area families, many of whom are recently unemployed. The Pantry continues bimonthly food deliveries to 1,300 people in 10 senior housing apartment buildings. Most are in lockdown due to COVID-19, and unable to shop for themselves. The Cleveland Kosher Food Pantry was established over 40 years ago by Mrs. Alevsky’s parents, Rabbi and Rebbitzin Zalman and Shulamit Kazen, as part of their efforts to help Russian Jews settle in Cleveland through the Semach Sedek Russian Immigrant Aid Society (RIAS). Its Advisory Board is co-chaired by Muriel Weber and Chuck Whitehill.



4 bed 2.1 bath. Classic Split-level on Prime Beachwood street! Living and dining room in L shape for ease of entertaining. Newer eat-in kitchen offers Maple cabinets, granite counters, stone tiled backsplash, ceramic tile floor. Sizable family room with marble trimmed fireplace and sliding door to patio and backyard. 4 large bedrooms upstairs, 3 with wood floors and 1 with wood floor under carpet. Master suite has updated en-suite full bath. Finished lower level. Spacious, park-like backyard. $449,900 | Sharon Friedman | 216-338-3233










Cleveland Kosher Food Pantry adds trailers to serve clients through winter



“As with any project before we start making selection like furniture or layout, we get to know how our clients want to use the space,” she says. “This in turn allows us to make the right selections, as in the amount of seating, seating arrangement, comfort and durability of materials.” Natural materials are trending. “We lean towards natural material for outdoor use…stone, teak, and wrought iron. We like to incorporate rustic beams which are both structural and aesthetically pleasing.” Among the outdoor “rooms’ they create are cooking areas, dining areas and sitting/relaxing areas. “W Design loves to bring the indoor elements to the outside. The request list from our clients have included cooking areas featuring grills, cooktops, pizza ovens, mini refrigerators, ice machines and dishwashers. For the lounging areas, built-in heaters, retractable screens, televisions, and cozy spaces to relax are popular additions. Fireplaces and moveable fire bowls are popular in creating some livable luxury. “The style you choose should compliment your homes architectural lines and pair well with the other outdoor pieces selected,” says Liccardi. Durability is always important whether designers are working in northern or southern climates. “It’s important to take into account the client’s environment, the amount of sun they get, exposure to the elements, and the wear and tear the pieces will receive,” says Liccardi.

3 bed, 2.1 bath. Recently updated free standing Cluster home in Villas of Pepper Pike! New (2020) Bellawood Maple floor and new carpet throughout! Freshly painted interior (2020). Formal Dining Room with detailed trim. Updated Kitchen offers Granite, glass tile backsplash, and appliances. Great Room has built in cabinetry, Fireplace, and soaring Palladium window! Master on first with an updated granite counter, Jacuzzi brand soaking tub, Marble shower with glass door. Two spacious bedrooms on second floor are connected by a Jack and Jill bath. Lovely outdoor living space with paver patio!

$439,900 | Sharon Friedman | 216-338-3233


CURRENTS March 18, 2021 www.currentsneo.com

3 bed, 2.2 bath. One of a kind, exceptionally appointed home on picturesque 1.5 acre setting! Eat-in Kitchen w/Wolf four burner gas range, commercial grade range hood, Limestone counters, backsplash, hardwood flooring! Marble & slate foyer leads to formal Living & Dining Rooms w/gleaming hardwood floors! Family Rm w/hdwd floors, fireplace, built ins, vaulted ceiling, panoramic views! Master suite w/Marble bath, oversized walk in shower! Two more bedrooms up, renovated main bath. Garage entry opens into spacious Util/ mud room w/Custom cabinetry and counters. LL Family Rm & office! Landscaped yard w/stone terrace w/Finelli iron rails!

$695,000 | Sharon Friedman | 216-338-3233

4 bed, 3.5 bath. Majestic Tudor classic in Fernway. Spacious rooms with hardwood and architectural detail. Third floor bedroom and bath. Finished lower level. Lovely landscaped yard with paver patio. $354,900 | Sharon Friedman | 216-338-3233

4 bed, 5.1 bath. Stunning presentation on almost 13 acres in Solon! Custom built all brick Colonial w/incredible detail! 2 story foyer w/Italian marble tile, Austrian crystal chandelier leads to formal living & dining rooms w/hardwood floors. Great room w/fireplace, skylights, wetbar, spiral staircase. Expansive island Kitchen w/granite, walk-in pantry, newer SS appliances. Morning room leads to wrap around patio. Office w/built-ins on first. 2nd floor Master Suite w/Master Bath w/jetted tub, dressing room. Finished lower level complete w/workout area, theatre/media room, bar, full bath. Room to build outbuildings or keep as your own nature preserve.

$950,000 | Sharon Friedman | 216-338-3233

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