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Designed to Flourish aims to inspire, encourage and uplift the women of Hampton Roads.
Write someone you love a heartfelt letter. Today. Make a fancy schmancy dinner for a retiree who doesn’t get out much. (Sans salt perhaps?) Invite that neighborhood child who is always hanging around to church with your family. Better yet, “adopt” him into your family and slowly change a life. Take the time to call forth the ‘gems’ out of those around you. Release others’ potential! Purpose to be a better listener than you are a talker. Seriously. Be quick to forgive. Be even quicker to bless others. It’s more blessed to be a giver than a taker, after all. Let your light shine! Share the gospel. Daily. Do a random act of kindness for a neighbor – mow a lawn, pet sit or keep someone company who can’t get out. Offer to baby-sit for an overwhelmed mom. Help a newlywed organize her cabinets. Visit a nursing home, bring cookies and children’s artwork. Be sure to put a genuine smile on your face—even in bad traffic—it’s always the best accessory. Support a missionary. Send a fun care package to a military member serving overseas. Oh, and include bubble gum. Be grateful for the big things and the little things. Be creative. Part of our purpose lies in our creativity. We are made in God’s image and just look at how creative He is. Write a book, take up painting, grow flowers, or join the church choir. Whatever you do—let your life sing so loud that others can “hear” it! It’ll bring you joy too!
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Editor’s Note I will never forget sitting in an audience several years ago completely enthralled to hear the most amazing worship music. I wasn’t the only one with tears in my eyes, captivated to hear such a tremendously lovely and anointed song. Her voice was truly transcendent and obviously a God-given talent to paint such magnificence upon people’s lives -- creating music that trickled from our ears down to our very hearts and souls. The beauty of that song brought color and light to our lives and infused our spirits with even more love for Christ. As I sat there I remember thinking, “Wow, what a tremendous ability you’ve given her, Lord.“ And before I could stop myself, “I wish you would give me a gift like that! How amazing to be able to bring such beauty to others’ lives!” Then, from inside my spirit came that small, still voice. “I have, and you do.“ As I considered this, I realized that while not every gift is about literally standing up and singing, (and if you’ve heard my “joyful noise” you know it certainly isn’t a gift I possess). But, each gift can be equally as beautiful. It may be gardening, writing, preaching or teaching, but each talent shared has the ability to bring light and beauty just the same. Since then, hearing someone sing in a beautiful, captivating way has become a representation to me of the gifts and abilities that each one of us possesses. No matter the lyrics, every time I am touched by a heartfelt, hair-raising song, I’m reminded how each person can touch the world with that same, life-giving beauty! You see, part of each of our purpose lies in our creativity. We are each an individual expression of God with a special contribution that we can bring to our world. So what makes your heart sing? What do you love to do? Well, often when one is doing that, they too are expressing the divine presence that lives within, as beautiful as the most magnificent opera. It’s joyful, it’s glorious! It’s like the words of Eric Liddell in Chariots of Fire, “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.“ What makes you feel His pleasure? Is it running, painting, writing, singing? Making children laugh? Perhaps it is making cakes or painting hopefulness in others’ lives through your words of encouragement. It could be teaching, being a mother, wife or friend, taking photos or running your own business - to name a few. Whatever it is for you, do it with passionate relish. Let it flow forth from your life to bless others, as it too has the same ability to surpass the limits of ordinary experience and point others towards our Creator. Every life can and should have a heart that sings. Doing so will make you feel alive, in harmony, and full of God’s pleasure. It will also bring sweet music to all those around you, and, ultimately bring glory to God. So come on ladies, open your heart (and in some cases even your mouth) and let your life sing! It’s time to dust off that “record“ that is stored in your heart and let it croon from the rooftops. May we always reach down to the bottom of our souls, take what the Lord has deposited there, then let it ring forth from within in its many different expressions - to bring salt and light to our world. What are we waiting for? In Him,
“But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God's unfailing love for ever and ever ” (Psalm 52:8).
Designed to Flourish Magazine is for Hampton Roads Christian singles, wives, moms, friends, daughters . . . women. It is for those aspiring to be all they were created to be—their most beautiful and fulfilled selves. It is for women who desire to sparkle with the light of Christ in their relationships, roles, finances, life goals, and all areas of life. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). This includes being a Proverbs 31 woman! 224 Springbrook Lane Chesapeake, VA 23320 757-348-5664 iflourishonline.com Publisher/Executive Editor Kelly Head Senior Editor Cresta Shawver Design Director Nicole Knight Graphic Design Assistant Chanelle Holloman Photographers Emma Addesa, Elizabeth Bergman, Arynne Keezer Flourish Ad Design Chanelle Holloman Victoria Moore Contributing Writers Andie Adams, Armeka Carter, Rebecca Brittingham, Theresa Ceniccola, Penny Crowell, Paige Crunk , David Edwards, Kelly Head, Nathalie Jeter, Phyllis Johnson, Dr. Linda Mintle, Lisa Marshall, Jennifer Miller, Vierna Naomi, Cresta Shawver and Amy Volk Special Thanks Harvest Assembly and New Life Providence churches along with all of the wonderful contributors. Thank you!
Designed to Flourish Magazine is published six times a year by Flourishing Media, LLC. No portion may be reproduced without the written consent of the publishers. The opinions of the contributing writers do not necessarily reflect those of the publishers. Flourishing Media LLC, assumes no liability for products, services or statements made by advertisers. The publishers reserve the right to refuse advertisements that do not meet the publications standards. Have your Designed to Flourish Magazine delivered for
“… But each one has his own gift from God, one in this manner and another in that”(1 Corinthians 7:7). “Do not neglect the gift that is in you” (1 Timothy 4:14).
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In This Issue 3
Editor's Note: Let Your Life Sing!
Christianity in High Heels: When is ‘The Wait’ Going to End? 5 6 Flourish Makeover: Our Big “Inside Out” Makeover! Flourish: The Song 8 The Mompreneur: How to balance business and 9 family sans the guilt! Yes, it can be done! 10 Simplified Living: Closet 101 11 Smart Cents: Is your financial future secure? 12 Do you know a caregiver? Ways you can provide support. “Natural” Beauty Products 14 ‘Unwrapped’ & Kitchen Cosmetics: Easy facials! 15 A Song in Her Heart & Flourish Cutie Pie Winner
16 Around Town: VB General Labor & Delivery to Relocate & more 17
Mintle Health: Letting your Life Sing (at any age) & Fitness: How to get fit even after baby!
18 Palette: The Threshing Floor, Olivia Morgan’s stunning new album 19 Singing Through All Seasons of Life 20 Fruity Summer Recipes: Fruit Salsa and Homemade Lemonade are Perfect Crowd Pleasers!
Joella Skilleter is predominately a self-taught artist. For many years she focused her attention on watercolors, as it suited her nomadic lifestyle. After settling in New Zealand for a number of years, she began to explore the acrylic medium. In recent years, she has developed an interest in painting during times of worship and prayer. Joella currently resides in the United States. You can explore her range of paintings at www.joellaskilleter.com
Help spread the ministry of Designed to Flourish! Please pick up extra copies and pass them along to the women in your life. Our goal is to steward the copies by getting them directly into the hands of the Christian women of Hampton Roads. Also, are we available at your church, Christian conference, Bible study or other event? We would love to be! Please contact us. Also, please show support for our sponsors by considering their services and letting them know you found them in Designed to Flourish. Our goal is to provide resources that you can trust. We are looking for people with a heart for the Christian women of our community. We currently are looking for volunteer help with media, administration, proofreading, events coordinator and distribution coordinator roles. Come be a part of our ambassador program or an officer in newly forming Flourish leadership committee. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for information. Please review the writing submission guidelines prior to sending submissions at www.iflourishonline.com.
How to throw a summer 21 backyard barbecue: From no frills to fancy schmancy!
22 AidNow: When the local nonprofit learned that something as simple as a fence could mean life or death for the people of Vietnam, they were compelled to help.
About the Cover Artist
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Christianity in High Heels blessedbabe
Multi-Award Winning Homearama Builder
R.L. B lount Custom Homes Inc. is an award winning family owned business with one goal - to see that each custom home is built with the highest level of quality,craftsmanship and attention to detail to ensure customer satisfaction and lasting value. We have many design plans to choose from, all of which are readily customized to meet your desires, and we also build to your architects plans and specifications. Blount Custom Homes uses only the finest local craftsmen who have been with us for many years to insure our superb quality. It is our pleasure to assist and lead you from site selection until the completion of your home. Our standard is excellence in building, with honesty, integrity and superior customer service. We have many available lots in several communities. Call for consultation appointment.
When is the wait going to end? When will waiting for ‘The One’ be done? It seems as if it’s never going to be over—all the bad dates, unstable relationships and being led on. Add these to the fact that waiting isn’t one particular activity that anybody likes, and you can be pretty miserable. I continued to ask God “When?” I just wanted to get it over with—to stop waiting and move on to that chapter of my life that included wedding bells. Recently, I went to a great concert where I stood in line for two hours, then waited for another couple of hours for a sound check before the band played. When the band finally came out, I was so impatient, waiting for them to sing all my favorite songs. When they played the first of my favorites, I stopped myself and realized, “Man, I should have just enjoyed these moments.” They could be playing my next four or five songs and then it would be over in an hour. Now, it seemed that all the unnecessary things that I impatiently waited for had been moot. That whole night wasn’t about the waiting, but about the concert. It would’ve been more productive to enjoy the moments leading to it rather than being focused on the wait. This is the realization I already knew, but had reinforced more than ever – if singlehood is all just about waiting for “The One” (if “The One” meant your future husband and not some sort of mythical soul mate), then it would seriously just pass us by before we realized that we didn’t relish the time. Being single is really about being single. It’s not about waiting for “The One.” Too many romantic comedies from Hollywood have been etched into our brains with the notion that this is our life’s purpose, but this isn’t true! We are supposed to be “the light of the world” or “the salt of the earth.” We’re not supposed to live our lives afraid to be alone. We’re supposed to live our lives so that others know that they’re not alone. I’d much rather go with this kind of purpose than “searching for the better half so that I may be complete.” I mean . . . ugh . . . that just sounds too cheesy, don’t you think? After a wave of bad dates and the acceptance that there is just no perfect guy walking around, we all probably know by now that there’s no guy who can complete us (except for Jesus). It’s a better purpose because it’s something that’s beyond ourselves. Singlehood is not just a time to romp. It’s the time to reach out to others, which means you can’t be antisocial! So whatever it is you’re purposed to do, know this, “He who began a good work in you is faithful to complete it (Phil 1:6 paraphrased).” That just means that with all this waiting, don’t worry. You’ll get there. In the meantime, enjoy and relish the journey! “blessed babe” works as a marketing communications professional in the Philippines. She’s also actively involved in organizing events for her local church’s young adults and market workplace ministries. Aside from all this, she’s a professional maid of honor, aunt, shopper and blogger. Her single Christian girls adventures are chronicled at www.christianityinhighheels.com.
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Photo by Arynne Keezer
Designed to Flourish
Makeover Winner Melissa Shoemake “Melissa Shoemake is a beautiful, kind, giving person who is always taking care of everyone else,” said Ann Christie of Virginia Beach, who nominated Melissa as the Flourish makeover winner. “She has overcome a lot and would really deserve a makeover.” The team at Flourish was also touched by Melissa’s story and overcoming spirit. We believe that the Lord wanted her, and others of us like her, to know that He always knows exactly where we are in our lives. He loves all His daughters with an overwhelming, lavishing love.
Melissa’s story: I want to tell my story to touch the lives of others; I know that what God did in me, He can do in others.
times on my own, but had no success. I’d been to jails and institutions, but none of these methods worked. I was hopeless and ashamed.
Photo Courtesy of “Meliss
Then about seven years ago, after losing everything, including my two children, my I started drinking at 15 as a result of anger extremely patient husband said that he had and bitterness I’d held onto after years of finally had enough and that this life of chaos traumatic experiences and abandonment that took place in my childhood and teenage was over for him. I looked around me that night at a party, where I had fled in years. Physical and mental the night shadows, and wondered abuse had left me scarred, so to myself, ‘Could there be more for I walked this earth a miserable me? Could I change?’ The following person. By the 17, I had started day, after saying goodbye to my using cocaine, which eventually friends at the time, I checked myself led to using crack and a host of into a detox center. They sent me other self-destructive behaviors. to Cartersville, Virginia, where I I hated everyone, but most learned to forgive others and, most of all I hated myself. I had no importantly, to forgive myself. I spent self-esteem, self-worth or self28 days there, reflecting on who I respect; I only wanted to die Melissa before the makeover. The mom of two works in the medical wanted to be and how I could get and leave this horrid world. field and enjoys running when not or taking classes. Her there. I met a wonderful pastor and Somehow I still managed to meet volunteering typical routine is sans makeup and maintenance to fit her busy his wife who prayed with me, and I and marry a wonderful Christian low lifestyle. The team kept that in mind and focused on adding some accepted Jesus into my heart to help man, who had unconditional color, yet giving her and easy-tomanage, new and refreshed look. me change my life. When I returned love for me. Thankfully, my to Virginia Beach, I really had a new children were healthy and happy. perspective on life; something inside me had I tried to quit using drugs and alcohol many changed. Within two months I had my children 6
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Photo by Arynne Keezer
I was able to obtain my driver’s license and start Melissa gets her hair highlighted and an updated cut and style by Karen McGrath. Karen gave a small cleaning Melissa something she could easily manage, but stylish, fun and would brighten her up. business. My marriage “I love my new hair style!” said Melissa. was solid, because I now had Jesus as my rock. I now volunteer with the homeless and other alcoholics to tell them my story of regrets, and road to redemption; I feel that I can only keep what I have by giving it away. Back then, I had never even imagined that my life could be so abundant.
renewing of mind and spirit. God wanted to replenish and renew me with a fabulous day of pampering and to show me how much He loves me. He let me know that He knows what I’m going through. I first met with Marguerite Evans and through prayer and her ministry,(www. margueriteevans.com) the Lord released me from unrealized pains, past hurts and hangups that I had been holding onto for years. Marguerite Evens ministered to Melissa in a powerful way that brought some deep emotional freedom. “I had tried many different things over the years - from therapy to you name it, but nothing had ‘worked.’ While meeting with Marguerite, the Lord really moved and now I feel so free. I’m sleeping so peacefully - something I hadn’t done in years!” said Melissa. Marguerite is available for makeover and ministry events where many have received personal breakthroughs and a deeper revelation of the Father Heart of God.
I feel freer than ever I went back to school and graduated from before; my anxiety is college and have awesome friends. My completely gone. God is friend Patti Watkins helped so good! My me train to run the Rock & story ends Roll Half Marathon to raise where the money for People In Need, caterpillar PIN (www.pinministry.org). slowly changes as she wriggles Patti started out as a trainer, and squirms to be free of her but became my best friend cocoon. She then becomes and confidant. I also thank a beautiful butterfly with so Jacqueline Maples of The Well Watered Garden gives Recover For Life (a 12-step Melissa a professional facial. Jackie provided the Back many wonderfully brilliant the Garden anti-aging facial designed to help combat Biblical program in Hampton Todamage from sun and stress by lifting the muscles colors and then she flies! helping to smooth the skin. “I felt so pampered Roads www.r4ci.com/) and the and and my skin so hydrated and soft, it was an amazing Because you know – butterflies experience,” said Melissa about her first-ever facial. wonderful people who run it. are free! “He whom the Son I have to say the last couple months have sets free is free indeed!” (John 8:36). been hard; I’ve had trials and tests and was In honor of being changed from the inside out, we encourage you to grab a friend and treat yourselves to a lavishing day of pampering too - also from the inside out! growing weary. Being a Christian does not mean special thanks every day is perfect; Sponsors: you will have days that Abuelos Mexican Restaurant, Greenbrier. www.abuelos.com. Arynne Keezer, Photography. Arynne.email@example.com seem to deplete you, Angela Draper, Avon Spa/Beauty Gift Bag. YourAvon.com/angeladraper. Heart of a Women Consignment, Indian River, Virginia Beach. HerHeartShop.com but the Lord is with you Karen McGrath, Hair Stylist. 757-241-0036. through these times Marguerite Evans Ministries, Makeover & Personal Ministry. MargueriteEvans.com Nails by Jackie. (757) 382-4888. 500 S. Battlefield Blvd. St. 13, Chesapeake. and this is when He Shelia Roddy, Professional Makeup Artist. Bonnifaces@hotmail.com. Melissa gets fitted with another beautiful The Well Watered Garden Facial Clinic, Virginia Beach. TheWellWateredGarden.net makes you stronger. look by Tracy Wise, owner of Heart of a Joy Wansley. Fashion Consultant. Joywans@yahoo.com. Photo Elizabeth Bergman
Photo by Elizabeth Bergman
back, and I started to have a real life.
Photo by Arynne Keezer
Women Consignment Shop. The team there shows Melissa how to put together a beautiful, colorful, designer look at a great value. The shop has some wonderful items - from clothes to accessories and even gift items. The atmosphere in the store also deserves mention - Tracy has such a beautiful, loving heart that she makes shopping there such a joy, said Joy Wansley, Flourish Fashion Editor.
As I was at the end of my rope, I received a phone call that I had been chosen for this fabulous makeover, a
Thanks to: Terebinth: A Sweet Retreat, Towne Place at Greenbrier, Chesapeake JC Penny’s, Greenbrier Mall Elizabeth Bergman – Makeover Coordinator Rebecca Brittingham - Videography Find out more about our sponsors, see more photos and catch the video interviews at www.iflourishonline.com.
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The Song Andie Adams
Clay and I had checked off all the tourist-type places—the beach, the botanical garden and the straw market. Our days had been full of adventure and fun. Today, however, was Sunday and I wanted to go to church. That was something we had not done yet in the Bahamas, and I was anxious to go. “Let’s just get a taxi to drop us off at this one,” I said to my husband while I pointed to the address of a church in the Bahamas’ phone directory. “You can’t just take a taxi to some random church!” my husband protested. “Why not?” I questioned. “If some family visited our church and needed a ride back to the Virginia Beach oceanfront, we’d take them. You know we would.” I said. He rolled his eyes and shook his head as if to shake some sense into the situation.
I’ll tell you what, that was already the makings of a beautiful service. Can you imagine the busy, bustling, almost-timed-to-the-second churches in America allowing wisdom to just take her sweet time? Wow! I couldn’t wait to hear what they had to say. An elderly man stood up, took the microphone and shared about how the Lord had blessed him with a beautiful long life. He sat down and another man stood. He encouraged the congregation to remember to thank the Lord for all they had. But it was a little old lady, who must have been 90 years old, who slowly stood and stole the show. She needed no microphone; everyone could hear her. There was no background . ) 3 2 : 1 7 music; it wasn’t needed. The (Psalm pianist did not gradually accompany her, because it was obvious she was already being accompanied. With wisdom, poise, grace and the strength of a life wrapped in Christ, she just opened her mouth and sang. “Amazing Grace. How sweet the sound. That saved a wretch like me. I once was lost, but now I’m found. ‘Twas blind but now I see…”
r o f t u o h s l l i w s p i “My l I sing praise n e e h v a w h y u jo o y e s u a c e b , to you ed me” redeem
The taxi rolled to a stop and dropped us off. Taxis are easy. They come. They go. This one, however, was our only way back to the hotel. No other taxis would be coming out this way. We were out in the middle of nowhere and at least five miles from our hotel. I was starting to have second thoughts. What if they don’t want us here? What if they don’t like tourists? My heart was pounding. “Hello! Welcome to our church!” “Come in! Come in!” “Please, sit where you like.” The voices were all so kind and warm. They showed us to the sanctuary where the other people were seated. We didn’t want to cause a scene. We just came to worship. So we quickly slid into the back row. Clay leaned over and said, “You better start making some new friends or we’re walking home tonight, honey.” I shushed him. “The pastor is getting ready to speak.”
“Tonight,” the pastor began, “I would like to welcome our senior citizens. Tonight our seniors are invited to share their life wisdom with the church.” With that invitation, deacons began preparing the microphone.
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My throat hurt. My face was wet. That was beauty. That was wisdom. That was amazing. The lady sitting beside me handed me a Kleenex and whispered, “That lady is blind, you know. Her whole life she’s been blind. Amazing what a woman who’s never seen a thing has seen.” Then she paused and said, “Where are you from?” “Virginia Beach, Virginia.” I answered. “Do you need a ride home?” she winked. “We do. We were hoping someone would ask.” It is amazing grace that saves us all. Remember who you were before you could see. Andrea Adams is a Baylor University graduate with a heart for the lost. She is the wife of Clay, the kindest man on the planet, and the mother of Blake and Abby. She is an accomplished writer and producer who currently serves on the Board of Directors for Bethany Christian Services, but says the most important aspect of her life is Christ.
God Wants You to be a Guilt-Free Mom: How to balance business and family without feeling guilty Theresa Ceniccola When my first child was born, I had no idea what would accompany him into this world and forever embed itself in my mind and in my heart. No, I’m not talking about maternal instinct and the incredible bond of motherhood, although I am supremely grateful for the gift of experiencing those joys. I’m talking about something not quite as welcome. I’m talking about the “G” word: Guilt. Don’t get me wrong—I possessed my fair share of the “G” word long before my transition into motherhood. In fact, the guilt that was planted in my heart as a child was so well-nurtured that it became a part of me, like an appendage . . . something I carried with me without even realizing it. But just as pregnancy causes your ankles to swell, motherhood gave that Guilt Appendage a steroid injection that made it grow so quickly, it soon became my most prominent feature. I had a business. I had a baby. So now, all of a sudden, I had a whole new reason to exercise my Guilt Appendage. You know the dilemma: You’re at work, but you can’t stop thinking about how you should probably be spending more time with your children, savoring these precious years before they are gone forever. Then, you’re at Toddler Time at the children’s library, but your mind is racing with thoughts about all the work you should be doing and the fact that colleagues don’t view you as the professional you once were because you now carry diapers in your purse. You can’t seem to get comfortable; you don’t feel great about either one of your jobs. You don’t feel like a good mother, but you don’t feel like you are giving your best at work either. Do you let the “G” word get in the way of your happiness and success? If so, then I invite you to join me in a special club. Before you roll your eyes, I promise you that membership in this club will not require any additional time. There are no meetings.
There are no dues. There are no by-laws. And you will never be asked to bring an appetizer to share. This privileged organization is The Guilt-Free Mom Club, and I hope you will accept my invitation to become a member. The only requirement is that you make decisions that are in alignment with your Christian values and then release yourself from any guilt associated with those decisions. As a certified member of the Guilt-Free Mom Club, you have permission to: Say “No” with clarity and grace to any people or activities that do not serve you and your family; Be fully present in your role as a mother and be fully present in your role as a professional; Accept responsibility without undo burden; Let go of the misguided belief that YOU are the ONLY one who can possibly do it (whatever it is); Know that it’s OK let someone else take a turn being of service; Value your own time, skills and talents; Surround yourself with uplifting and encouraging support systems; Care for yourself by filling your own cup first, and serving others from the overflow. My sisters, God wants you to be a Guilt-Free Mom! Lighten your load and join me. “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28). Theresa Ceniccola is The Christian Mompreneur—a Mentor to Moms Running a Business that Supports Faith and Family. Read her inspiring ezine: www.theresaceniccola.com.
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Love running your business, but dread the
Finally, to keep your closet gorgeous and tidy, purge a thing or two every time you buy something new. Evaluate at least once a year what you have and haven’t worn and ask yourself “why?” When you can see all your clothes, easily get to them and put them away, and you look great in everything you put on, you will be happy I got a little in-your-business! Simplified Living LLC founder Amy Volk has a passion for creating beautiful, clutter-free homes and corporate environments. She helps people learn to live more simply. Visit her at www.simplifiedliving.org.
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IM PT U
Now the fun part. Go buy supplies. Listen up girls, don’t go buy supplies until you get to this stage! The biggest mistake clients make is that they go buy supplies before the purging. You will never get the right things in the right amount beforehand. Have fun. Be creative. Your closet should make you smile. Mount hooks on the wall for purses, scarves, belts, jewelry, and hats. Hang a new light fixture. Paint the walls. Get colorful hangers. Buy baskets, patterned containers, and whatever else makes you excited to see it everyday. Get all the clothes on hangers or shelves. Shoes can go on shelves, in baskets or hanging shoe holder. The bottom line is that everything should have a place to go. I know, you’ve heard that before, but I just wanted to remind you.
Once your hardware situation is settled, it’s time for the part you hate: purging. Ask a true friend (one that isn’t afraid to say “Girl, that looks horrible on you!” or “WHAT were you thinking when you bought that??!”), to help you decide what to keep and what to donate. The rule that I use with myself and with clients is that if you don’t feel confident, sharp, beautiful or polished, then it needs to go. Seriously. Even your casual clothes can make you look this way, and dare I say, they should! When you do lose those last 10 pounds, you aren’t going to want those old clothes anyway–you will want to go buy new! The purging part will take the longest, because you must look at everything you own and decide if it stays or goes.
Well, now that you have let me in the most personal room of the house and I have all but insulted you, let’s take a close look at what’s in there. For starters, your closet has limited space. To say it better, you can only keep as much as fits nicely on the hanging rods and shelf space. Clothes don’t belong on the floor and when you can’t move them a little to view each piece, consider that your first warning sign of too much stuff! Sometimes your closet needs an overhaul in the configuration department. For less than $100, Rubbermaid has made some fantastic complete closet redo package that can be found in a big box hardware store.
Can I get personal? You don’t look good in everything you have in your closet. There. I said it. So then, I have to ask, why do you keep all those clothes? Why do you tell yourself that you will wear them when you lose 10 more pounds? For a special occasion? And this is my favorite: that they will come back in style!
• Budgeting • Operating efficiency evaluation • Policies & procedures documentation • Monthly financial reports analysis • Internal controls evaluation • Lease vs. buy decisions • Evaluation of financing options
Enjoy peace of mind and time to focus on the parts you do love: Contact Cherie today!
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Call today to schedule your Free 30-minute consultation 757-599-1FIT Lisa Marshall Certified Personal Trainer 757-559-1FIT Lisa@optimumlifefitness.com
Recently I had the privilege of working with a young family to do some financial planning. They indicated that they had never worked with an advisor before and were accustomed to making financial decisions on their own. But a few weeks before our meeting, one of their friends tragically died in an auto accident. This really shook up the young couple. Not only the loss of their friend and the sadness they felt for his wife and children, but also the lingering question – what if that happened to us? Many of us feel invincible. But when reality hits, that an unexpected, unplanned event can completely change the course of a person’s life, it does create an environment to ask a lot of questions. This couple wanted to be more prepared, so they decided to talk with me about their concerns and desires in order to get a perspective from someone outside the immediate family. They wanted to make sure they were covering their blind spots. As I asked questions and got to know this couple better, I saw that they loved each other very much and wanted to provide for each other and their children. We designed a comprehensive plan to cover both planned and unplanned events. We
obtained life insurance policies for both of them. We also started the children with small whole life policies, so they will have coverage that they can take with them into adulthood and can expand the coverage when they have their own families. We designed a retirement plan to supplement the contributions they are making through his work. This retirement plan builds flexibility and diversification into their existing plan so they do not have to rely solely on the very inflexible retirement plan that his company offers. We also put together a college savings plan for their two children. The final thing we worked on was protecting his income with disability income insurance. This coverage may provide a benefit should he become too sick or injured to work.
The process to design and implement this plan involved meeting a couple of times and spending a few hours talking through their questions, goals, visions and dreams that they have for their family’s future. The end result was a very confident couple. They now feel secure knowing that they can look forward to life’s milestone events like college, weddings, vacations, grandchildren and retirement while also knowing that life’s unexpected events won’t derail their vision for the future. Penny Crowell is a Registered Principal of and offers securities and investment advisory services through MML Investors Services, LLC., Member SIPC. Supervisory Office: 222 Central Park Avenue Suite 1100 Virginia Beach VA 23462 (757) 490-9041.
What is the sign of a good decision? ®
It’s having a financial professional you can depend on. Now more than ever. At Commonwealth Financial Partners, LC, we know how important it is to have confidence in your financial professional. That’s why we work to earn your trust by delivering custom insurance solutions that can be adapted to fit your changing needs. And with access to MassMutual’s range of quality insurance products, services and tools structured around their long term business philosophy, you can be sure the decision you make is a good one. MassMutual. We’ll help you get there®.
To learn more, contact:
Commonwealth Financial Partners, LC
Penny P. Crowell, MBA, CLTC, Financial Services Professional Commonwealth Financial Partners, LC 222 Central Park Avenue, Suite 1100, Virginia Beach, VA 23462 757-490-9041, ext. 319 • firstname.lastname@example.org
Life insurance + retirement/401(k) PLan services + DisabiLity income insurance + Long term care insurance + annuities
MassMutual Financial Group refers to Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), its affiliated companies and sales representatives. Insurance products are issued by MassMutual, Springfield, MA 01111 and its subsidiaries, C.M. Life Insurance Company and MML Bay State Life Insurance Company, Enfield, CT 06082. CRN201212-141966
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Do You Know a Caregiver? 6 Practical Ways to Help
Resources for Caregivers Strength for the Journey: Daily Encouragement for Caregivers by Elsie J. Larson, Deborah Hedstrom, Marcia A. Mitchell, and Lucibel Van Atta (Shaw Books, paperback, 224 pages)
Annie’s Story Every nerve in Annie’s body tensed as she heard her 85-year-old uncle calling from the next room. Blurry-eyed, she glanced at the clock: 2:30 am. “It’s like having a newborn,” she mused, “except he never grows up.” She’d cared for Uncle Ned for eleven years, but things were getting tougher: lately he’d been spitting up blood, but the doctor, who seemed to have given up on Ned, wouldn’t return Annie’s calls. And she hadn’t gotten a full night’s sleep in over a year. Uncle Ned’s only other relative, Tom, refused to help in any way and had been badgering Annie about putting Ned into a nursing home. But she’d promised Ned years ago that she would never do that to him. Many people had told her, “If there’s anything we can do to help, please call!” But Annie always hesitated to take them up on their offer. She was unsure exactly how much her friends were willing to give, and she didn’t want to impose. So she merely thanked them and asked them to keep her in prayer.
Six Ways to Help a Helper Do you know someone who looks after a mentally or physically challenged child? A disabled husband? An elderly parent? Whether by choice or circumstance, caregivers give themselves daily for the sake of others. One of the ironies of long-term caregiving, however, is that caregivers often feel guilty asking for help or taking care of their own needs.
Here are six ways you can lend practical and emotional support to the caregiver in your life. 1. Provide Encouragement. Thoughtful gestures mean the world to caregivers who feel at the end of their rope. Send an e-card, a real card, or a gift card to cheer up their day. Leave a voice mail saying that you were thinking of them today.
2. Lend a Listening Ear. Not many people want to hear the insand-outs of daily caregiving, but sometimes venting is exactly what the caregiver needs most. Listen. Really listen, and try to understand.
3. Give Food. Having to prepare meals several times a day can be draining, especially to an already overworked caregiver. Groceries, home cooked or store bought meals, restaurant take-out . . . you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to please a caregiver when it comes to food he or she doesn’t have to make!
4. Lend a Hand. When it comes to giving the caregiver a break from regular duties, it’s best to communicate clearly what exactly you are willing to do and what days and times you are available. What you do to help will depend on the situation and the individual. Some examples include watching the dependent for a couple of hours, sitting with the caregiver, taking the dependent to a hair appointment or a routine doctor’s appointment, going grocery shopping or running errands.
5. Give Time. Chatting over a cup of tea at the caregiver’s home can be the best gift you could give. It could also be the worst, if it adds stress to the caregiver. She may feel that now she needs to entertain you and take care of her dependent. Be sensitive to the caregiver’s temperament and make sure that this is a treat to you both.
6. Be a “Judgment-Free” Friend. Guilt is a constant factor in a caregiver’s life. Don’t give caregivers suggestions on how they could use their time more wisely, run their home more efficiently, get more exercise or eat more healthfully. Simply love them and be their friend. Finally, remember that everyone is different. Before you volunteer to help, evaluate the time and resources you have available and take stock of what you are capable of giving. The best kind of friend is someone that the caregiver can count on for the long haul. Don’t get burned out by doing too much too soon, then disappearing from the caregiver’s life and causing additional pain. Be specific in your offers of help. In Annie’s case, a long-time friend said to her one day, “My husband and I are available this Saturday night from 6-9 p.m. We’d like to come over and sit with your Uncle Ned so you can leave the house and do something fun. We know you love Mexican food: here’s a gift certificate to Don Jose’s.” Annie sat down and cried—and eagerly took her friend up on the offer. Nathalie Jeter recently moved from Virginia Beach to Ozark, Missouri to be a full-time caregiver to her mother, who is recovering from a stroke. She is the author of the guidebook Prayer Walk Beijing and blogs about travel, food, and prayer at www.prayerwalkguides.com.
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This devotional is packed with practical advice and inspiring stories for struggling caregivers. Written by four ladies experienced in long-term caregiving, it takes an honest look at the emotions often experienced by caregivers – fear, anger, guilt, loneliness, grief and temptation to sin – but also explores the joys. The message is simple: Tough times are real and sometimes feel unbearable, but there is hope! The authors’ life stories, which they share with shocking transparency, are proof positive that God is faithful and can be depended on no matter what the trial. The book includes two helpful appendices, “Caring for Yourself” and “Resources for Caregivers.” Each devotional is brief and Scripture-based, perfect for the busy caregiver.
Web Resources AARP Webplace http://www.aarp.org/ This site has a caregiving section that discusses caregiving options and includes information on caregiver support, long-term care financing, help with home care, housing options, assisted devices, and caregiving for adult children. Click on “Life Answers” on the main page to access caregiving information. Caregiving.com http://www.caregiving.com This site is useful for family members and professional health care providers. It offers a monthly “Caregiver Newsletter” that is full of information about how to handle the new lifestyle caregivers have to cope with. Caregiving.com runs a program called “The School of You” that offers six different classes that focus on the emotional stress on caregivers. This site also offers a weekly tips segment and a support center full of stories written and sent in by caregivers. Family Caregiver Alliance http://www.caregiver.org/caregiver/jsp/home.jsp This California organization’s website has an excellent series of caregiver fact sheets, a statistics and research section with several research articles of interest to caregivers, and the links to other useful resources. National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA) http://www.thefamilycaregiver.org/ The NFCA site provides caregivers with tips, advocacy updates, as well as information on communicating effectively with healthcare professionals. The site also offers a section on sharing your caregiving story, where family caregivers can write in to share their personal caregiving experience. Additionally, the site provides information on becoming a NFCA member and ordering publications. National Alliance for Caregiving http://www.caregiving.org The National Alliance for Caregiving provides information on caregiving that includes educational materials for caregivers, national statistics on caregiving, and, through the Family Care Resource Connection, reviews and ratings of over 1,000 books, videos, websites, and training materials on caregiving. Today’s Caregiver http://www.caregiver.com This site, operated by Caregiver Media Group, offers a weekly newsletter, discussion forums and extensive links to specific information resources. The Caregiver Media Group also produces “Today’s Caregiver Magazine,” which is the first national magazine dedicated to caregivers. The magazine supports the conferences that Caregiver Media Group holds. The next conference is called the Fearless Caregiver Conference and will be held on October 27, 2011, in Phoenix, Arizona. The Well Spouse Foundation http://www.wellspouse.org/ This site gives support to husbands, wives and partners of the chronically ill and/or disabled. They provide a bimonthly newsletter, “Mainstay,” mutual aid support groups in many areas, letter writing support groups, an annual conference, and other regional and weekend meetings around the country. The organization also works to make health care professionals and the general public aware of the difficulties caregivers face every day. The information above was referenced from: http://www.familycaregiving101.org/help/caregiving.cfm
SometimeS you juSt need a helping hand. thankfully, angel Care iS there. There In Your Times Of Need
When sisters Susan and Dottie Unger* first met their “Angel” from Angel Care Private Duty Nursing Services, they were badly in need of some relief. The ladies were ragged after months of caring for mom and dad, whose declining health had them both bedbound and in need of constant care. The daughters were loving and very helpful, but just needed a break for their own mental health. That’s when someone told them about Angel Care. Susan and Dottie were amazed that they could just call the day before for services and didn’t even have to be committed to a contract or set number of hours! They were also very grateful and relieved to find someone they could trust. Angel Care gave them the break they desperatly needed. Then, a few months later, mom passed away. It was hard on the sisters, but they also were very stressed about who would stay with their father the day of the funeral. Again the sisters rang for an Angel. Later they expressed how they couldn’t have asked for better service. “The caregivers are just so caring and professional. We will definitely refer others to Angel Care” -- Dottie and Susan Unger. *names changed to protect privacy
ring for your angel today 757-480-2929 angelCare-llC.Com Bathing/Dressing/Grooming, Meal Preparation Medication Monitoring, Light Housekeeping, Errands/Doctor or Other Appointments Post Surgical Care, Post Childbirth Care
Joyce Elliot, LPN ● Serving Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth & Suffolk● Office: 757-480-2929 ● Cell: 757-621-0072 ●
What Exactly Does It Mean to “Be Natural?” Jennifer Miller I’ve always loved make-up and beauty products. While most girls were filling their closets with shoes, I was mesmerized by the array of lotions and potions available at cosmetic counters. My collection eventually became so big that I had to buy a tackle box, normally used for fishing, to keep it all organized. As I’ve grown up, I’ve realized that there’s some truth to the idea that less is more, especially when it comes to beauty products. So, over the past several years, I’ve made a decision to buy less and to try to buy products that are as natural as possible – not always an easy task.
Kitchen Cosmetics Armeka Carter
If there’s one thing that’s certain when it comes to shopping for natural beauty products, it’s that very few things are certain. As of now, there are no specific criteria that must be met in order for a company to market a product as “natural” or even “organic.” This can make shopping for natural products confusing and frustrating. Here are some resources I’ve found helpful in my quest to go natural: The Natural Products Association (NPA) has a certification process that companies can go through in order to have their products “certified natural” by the NPA. According to its website, in order “to protect and equip consumers to maximize their well being, the association has developed the Natural Products Association Standard and Certification for Personal Care Products, a set of guidelines that dictate whether a product can be deemed truly ‘natural.’” While this provides a great starting point, be aware that each product a company sells must be individually certified. Therefore, just because a product you buy from a specific company is certified by the NPA, it does not mean that all the products that company sells are certified by the NPA. Go to www.npainfo.org to find a list of certified natural products. Another great resource is Environmental Working Group (EWG) Skin Deep Cosmetic Database (www. ewg.org/skindeep). This website provides a “safety score” for various personal care products. What makes it great is that you can search for items by a specific company, product or even ingredient to see what score it received. You can also use the site to find alternative products by typing in a product category (i.e., shampoo) and then searching for those products that receive a good Where to buy Natural Beauty Products: score. This search method exposes Major drugstore chains you to different companies that you Target/Wal-mart may not have tried. The site also Online: drugstore.com, sephora.com, and beauty.com provides links to retailers so that you can purchase hard-to-find products Ingredients to avoid and brands. Avobenzone/Oxybenzone (Chemical Sunscreens) BHA Additionally, the USDA has certified DMDM hydantoin certain beauty products as USDA DEA, MEA, TEA compounds Certified Organic. A USDA certified EDTA organic beauty product will display Formaldehyde the same label that you find on Parabens (propyl, isopropyl, butyl, and isobutyl) organic foods (and meet the same PEG (Polyethylene glycol)/Ceteareth/Polyethylene criteria). There aren’t many beauty Petrolatum/Mineral Oil/Paraffin products that qualify as organic. Phthalates Sulfates (sodium lauryl/sodium laureth/ammonium lauryl) Another consideration when it comes Triclosan to buying natural products is cost. Depending on where you currently purchase your personal care items, the cost of some natural beauty products could be high. There are some great options, like Burt’s Bees, that can be purchased at drugstores and are much more economical than department store brands. When it comes to beauty products, I use the same approach I use when shopping for organic food – I buy what I can afford and scour stores and websites for sales and special deals. With a little investigative work, you can usually find a good deal and not pay more than you would for other drugstore brands. Although there’s still a lot of debate as to which ingredients are okay and which ones are not, it’s still worthwhile to strive for a healthy, natural lifestyle. In the end, it’s up to each of us to know what’s inside the products we use and to decide which products are best for us.
Decision Making • Organization • Time Management • Self-Control
Homemade Facial Mask This face mask is suitable for all skin types and is super simple to prepare. It will cleanse and rejuvenate your skin. INGREDIENTS: 1 1
Tbsp. oatmeal, finely ground Tbsp. live, organic, plain yogurt (skip the flavored stuff)
A few drops of honey PREPARATION: • Add the yogurt to the oatmeal in a small bowl and mix together. • Warm a few drop of honey. To do this, warm a spoon under hot water for a minute, and then add a few drops of honey to the spoon. • Stir the honey into the yogurt and oatmeal mixture. • Apply the mask to the face. Leave it on for 10 minutes, and then rinse off with several splashes of warm water. Follow with a warm washcloth. • Apply moisturizer.
Christian Oriented • Bilingual (Spanish) Performing Arts • Co-Ed Ages 2-10 Offering children a learning environment that is nurturing, consistent, safe and peaceful. We serve the total developmental needs of children, building academic, emotional, moral and social skills.
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Gail Fuhrmann With a Song in Her Heart Phyllis Johnson
Flourish Cutie Pie
Cecilia Afanador 1 year old
Do you have a Cutie Pie? Send us an adorable picture of the child in your life. Send your submission to email@example.com by August 15th. Limit one photo submission per family, per issue.
Just as Jesus created wine from water, we humans are capable of transmuting emotion into music.” -Carlos Santana That quote certainly holds true for song writer Gail Fuhrmann. Ever since she was a preteen, Fuhrmann has expressed her emotions by writing lyrics. For the wife and mother of two grown sons, her teaching job at Portsmouth Christian School keeps her busy. But when she isn’t grading papers, you’ll likely find her thinking about new song lyrics. “Writing songs has always helped me see things more clearly,” she said. Her faith in God is her main inspiration for songs. “My pastor gives me a nudge; so often it is his sermons that jump-start an idea for a song,” she said. Love for her family also inspires lyrics. When her father-in-law passed away, Gail wrote her song, “Kisses from Heaven.” “That song was based on what he would say to his wife from heaven. Then, I wrote a lot last year when my dad was ill,” she said. “At that time, I wrote ‘I Can Do Anything.’ Composing the song helped lift my spirits during a very difficult time,” she said. When writing music, a chorus often comes to her mind, so she writes it down and returns to work on it later. She says it’s like a story set to music. Encouraged by friends at an idea party to actually put her lyrics to music, she found the courage to do so. Her most recent performance was at the Freedom from Fear women’s conference in March, held to raise awareness about human trafficking and victims of domestic violence, something Gail felt honored to be involved with because she is very moved by the tragedy of violence against women, she said. “Years ago, I wrote a song ‘I am Redeemed,’ which was about slavery. Later, when I heard of the global human trafficking, the song ‘Bigger than Me’ kept reverberating in my head.” She went to a friend, Candace Rardon, to get the notes down and then to Donna Thomas, pianist at First Baptist in Norfolk, to record the song. “One night at my church, we nailed it down. I mostly wanted to do this for the Freedom from Fear event,” she said. “But first I had to get over my own fear of performing it. There’s part of you that wants others to know you wrote it, but it’s also putting yourself out on a limb.” But she pressed through and was encouraged by the response from women around her. Some were so touched that they wanted copies of the lyrics, while others told how they felt compelled to help fight the issue of trafficking upon being inspired by her song. One woman, Eilene, felt so moved that she and her family actually then went to Nicaragua to the House of Hope to see girls who had been taken out of brothels. “When you push past your fears and use your God-given gifts,” she said, “it ends up being so worth it for the awe of being used by Him. Truly, in the end you stand back and give Him glory seeing how things are so much bigger than the little we feel we gave. I think sometimes we just need to realize that (our gifts) aren’t ours to hold on to. Like a song – we just give voice to it, and then let it go where it will … ultimately bringing beauty and conveying His hope.” Phyllis Johnson has been published in Woman’s World, Working Mother, Home life and The Sun. Currently, she also writes for The Virginian-Pilot and Tidewater Teacher. The author of four poetry books, she co-wrote a suspense novel, titled inkBLOT, to be published soon. www. phyllisjohnson.net.
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AROUNDTOWN >>> Labor & Delivery, NICU services in Va. Beach to relocate Paige Crunk, RN S ince 1998, there has been only one place in Virginia Beach to have a baby: Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital. After August 4, 2011, there will still be only one place in Virginia Beach to have a baby, but it will be the new Sentara Princess Anne Hospital, in partnership with Bon Secours Virginia. “This is my favorite part of the Women having babies in Virginia premature twin boy in the NICU at Sentara Virginia Beach Beach need to know of this relocation General, which relocates in so they can plan August.” accordingly with their - Paige Crunk, RN physicians. day. I’m holding a 45-day-old
At 5:00AM on Thursday, August 4, Labor and Delivery services and the current neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital will cease operations and relocate to Sentara Princess Anne Hospital. All women in Sentara Virginia Beach General waiting to deliver babies will be relocated by ambulance to Sentara Princess Anne Hospital to continue preparations.
As a career neonatal intensive care nurse, I can hardly describe how excited my team and I are about inaugurating our beautiful new Family Maternity Center at Sentara Princess Anne Hospital. It is designed for families with a focus on infant safety and security. Also, the new NICU is state-of-the-art. Designed around current best practices, the NICU will feature private patient rooms with overnight accommodations for family members to encourage early bonding. The private room setting will also reduce equipment noise and everyday hospital bustle around fragile newborns. In addition, many patient rooms will have a window to let in natural light and help develop normal sleep/ awake cycles. We are also pleased to have a strong ongoing partnership with neonatal physicians from Children’s Specialty Group.
New hospital grounds at Sentara Princess Anne Hospital feature a healing garden with a fountain.
Sentara Princess Anne Hospital will also create a more centralized location for women giving birth in Virginia Beach—near the amphitheater and Landstown High School, travel times for women throughout the city will be more equalized. The consolidated Labor and Delivery program will also be stronger and maximize the effectiveness of the NICU team. The opening of Sentara Princess Anne Hospital will also bring other service changes in Virginia Beach. On the morning of August 4, all remaining inpatients at Sentara Bayside Hospital will also transfer by ambulance to Sentara Princess Anne Hospital. After the last patient departs, Sentara Bayside will cease to be a hospital and will immediately transition to an
outpatient campus called Sentara Independence, which will include a 24-hour free-standing emergency department, imaging and lab services, a consolidated infusion center for all of Virginia Beach and a host of other outpatient services. Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital continues to play a pivotal role as the city’s trauma center and complex care hospital, featuring open heart surgery, neurosurgery, orthopaedic surgery, urology, inpatient rehabilitation and other specialized services worthy of Virginia’s most populous city. I hope you’re as excited as I am about Sentara Princess Anne Hospital and all the positive changes it will bring for healthcare in Virginia Beach. To learn more visit: http://www.sentara.com.
Local Author Spotlight Dr. Joy Frances, author of You Are Beautiful The heart of You are Beautiful by local emerging author and Chesapeake resident Dr. Joy Francis, professor at Regent University and Old Dominion University, is to help women in the body of Christ discover that they are loved and lovely. Her passion is to see broken people restored through Christ. Through her personal stories in her book, she shows how God heals the brokenhearted and that He wants to be our faithful comforter, redeemer, healer and best friend. You are Beautiful is available through Wine Press Publishing and Lybrary.com. All proceeds from the sale of this book go to organizations that help women and work to abolish human trafficking. “Poppy” by artist Lisa Wright
Christian Artist to Display Work Locally Lisa Wright will display more than 100 pieces of her God-inspired art as part of “Reflections from a Journey Partly Traveled” at the at the Oak Grove United Methodist Church art gallery in Chesapeake at 472 Battlefield Blvd North from 9 am to 12:30 pm Mondays through Fridays July 15-Oct. 15. The show will be a retrospective look at Lisa’s work from her days as an art student in school and Paris, through her years as an art educator, up through current projects she is working on. This body of work includes her Creation series, realistic wildlife studies and portraits, and her recent series of large flower studies and skies called “the heavens declare the glory of God” (Ps 19:1), as well as many others. You can see Lisa’s website at: http://lisawrightsart.com.
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Linda Mintle, PhD
Letting Your Life Sing I once heard an older person say that aging is a state of mind. I believe that’s true, but Americans are obsessed with pushing back the aging clock no matter the cost. I loved it when actress Jamie Lee Curtis bared her real and natural body for More magazine back in 2002. If you missed it, she allowed herself to be photographed with no make-up, no hair styling, wearing a sports bra and biker shorts, and standing under bright lights. At the time, this was a daring and unthinkable move for any Hollywood actress. The point was that our bodies change as we age. We may not like all the changes; I mean, who looks forward to an extra two to ten pounds with menopause? Who enjoys the thickening of her waist? But it happens! It’s not the end of life as we know it unless we overvalue youth and undervalue maturity. What bothers me is the implication that if we don’t pursue anti-aging treatments, we are lesser beings or in need of serious help. The thinking goes that an aging woman is broken and needs to be fixed. We might feel broken, but are we? Aging is a natural process in which the body does break down. It brings aches and pains and a change in beauty, but it doesn’t mean there is no beauty. We can mask the signs of aging, but they still exist. So it’s better to adapt to the changes and concentrate on being healthy and fit instead of trying to look twentyfive again. In reality, the minute we are born, we begin the process of dying. The sooner we realize this, the sooner we can get on with living our lives with zeal. Blessings come with age—maturity, wisdom, perspective—all of which bring peace and purpose. Look, if you and I are going to make peace with our thighs or any other body part, we’ve got to change our attitudes towards aging. How we approach aging impacts how we feel about our bodies. The more negative our attitudes, the worse we feel about our bodies. The more we fight the inevitable, the more exhausted we become. Two things must happen. First, we have to change our ideas about aging and not feel compelled to cover up external changes. Second, we have to resist the anti-aging messages in our culture and fight back. We can be vital and attractive at any age. So the next time you see an older woman, take time to look at her body. Study her and notice the changes that naturally occur. Then notice other things—her grace of movement, the brightness in her eyes, the spring in her step, the passion of her work. There is far more to our value than just our bodies, our shape, our skin, and our hair color. A quieted mind, the capacity to love deeply, spiritual maturity, passion, and wisdom are just a few benefits of aging. In fact, an old proverb tells us to seek wisdom above all else. Wisdom will make your life glorious, garland your life with grace, and festoon your days with beauty. Begin each day with a healthy respect for what your body has been through and accomplished. Thank God for what works and still functions. And remember that there is great purpose in your life as long as you live and breathe. For one day, focus on things of value rather than looking younger and see if you don’t feel better. Maybe that day of refocused priorities and a happier you will turn into a week, and then a month, and then a year. If it does, you will have successfully conquered the Mount Everest of the woman’s world- anti-aging. And if you do reach the summit, write me so we can celebrate together! Dr. Linda Mintle is a licensed therapist and bestselling author with 16 book titles to her name. Her newest book, I Love My Mother But…is now in bookstores and available online (Harvest House 2011). For more information, www.drlindamintle.com.
Back to the Beach after Baby Lisa Marshall The female body endures significant changes during pregnancy, the results of which can be discouraging, especially with the summer beach season upon us. One particular area of concern is the tummy. But don’t despair. Just as the body transforms to accommodate the baby, it can transform back to its pre-baby shape. God created our bodies with a built-in girdle comprised of several muscle groups that extend to the ‘glutes’ (your tush) and the ‘lats’ (your biggest back muscle), commonly known as the core. Several of these muscles, in the front and on the sides of the torso are stretched during pregnancy, so the key is to tighten and draw them back in. Below are several excellent exercises to get your core tight and toned again. Hold the first 3 exercises up to a minute. Do this series of exercises 2-3 times a week. Bridge Lay face up on the floor with knees bent and feet together. Lift hips as high as possible so that your body forms a straight line from your torso to your knees. Push through the heels in order to engage the ‘glutes’ and the abdominals. Next, extend one leg. Plank Lay on your stomach. Lift and support your torso with hands and forearms. Pull shoulder blades down and back. Keep legs together and flex your feet. Draw abdominals in toward your spine and lift your body. You should be positioned parallel to the floor with your body in a straight line. Side plank Lay on your side with your body straight. Support yourself on your elbows positioned directly under your shoulders. Place top leg forward so the heel of that leg touches the toe of the bottom leg. Lift hips as high as possible so that your body forms a straight line. Be sure shoulders don’t rotate forward. Quadruped Position yourself on your hands and knees with back straight. Extend the right arm and the left leg; hold a few seconds and switch sides. Pull the abdominals in tightly to keep the body as still as possible through the movement. Hip lifts Lay face up on the floor. Place arms along sides with palms down. Lift legs so they are perpendicular to the floor, and lift hips while keeping torso and head still. Do 12 reps. Lisa is a certified personal trainer who approaches fitness from the fact that we are spirit, soul and body. Her passion is to cultivate fitness inside and out so that her clients reach their fitness goals and live their best lives. Find her at: www.optimumlifefitness.com.
Olivia Morgan Launches Debut Worship Album that brings hope and freedom Julie Woodruff
Olivia Morgan often totes her acoustic guitar and silky-smooth voice between two Hampton Roads churches to lead worship on Sundays. The morning may begin with worship at her father, Pastor Steve Morgan’s The Bridge Christian Fellowship, and will normally end with worship alongside Adam Cates at Big House Church. Whether it’s in the house of God, a shadowy coffee shop or even a local bar, Morgan’s feminine voice and deep, spiritual lyrics give the audience shivers. The 20-year-old artist released her first album titled “The Threshing Floor” at Big House Church in Chesapeake on June 19. The album includes local church favorites like “Praise God” and “Belly of the Grave.” Inspired by the sounds of Leigh Nash, Sarah Groves and Eisley, Morgan is a classic, somewhat jazzy musician. Her music takes on a contemplative demeanor with lyrics speaking of Morgan’s deep, artistic ponderings. The CD bypasses the computer-generated sound of pop, and instead weaves Morgan’s feminine voice and acoustic guitar to make an underground, indie music sound. “We really wanted to keep that honest feel, that live feel as if you are with shoes off sitting by the fireplace kind of sound just meeting with the Lord,” said Morgan of her debut album.
people in dark places with the message of hope. Often times at performances, audience members told the band they “felt” something during the band’s performances.
Wynter Poe, Morgan’s fellow songwriter/ worship leader and friend. “Olivia is really sensitive to the Spirit and that makes all the difference in the world in a worship leader.”
Morgan’s own musical style combines poetic lyrics with spiritual depth to promote the virtue of honesty. The deep messages found in certain songs such as “Belly of the Grave” were composed during a dark time in Morgan’s life when she felt the Lord calling her to focus on Him above the distractions. All songs on Morgan’s debut CD were self-authored.
Poe treasures her times playing with Morgan because she does not focus on
“I would describe her language as very honest. She is not afraid to go into the darker, lonelier places that artists are afraid to go into, but in that she really taps into hope,” said Adam Cates, Senior Pastor of Big House Church. Morgan plays and writes with a prophetic intent in her music and believes that drawing people into the intimacy of a relationship with God is her calling as a musician and a Christian. “If anything in my life, I will be totally satisfied if I can share with people the intimacy of God as a father, as a friend, as a comforter, and as a listener,” said Morgan. Morgan sees her music as uninhibited and honest, with a uniquely “organic” sound. Her friend Daniel Brew, who assisted Morgan with recording the CD last summer at SDG Studios, agrees. While recording the album, there were intimate moments where Brew would leave the room for Morgan to focus on God, sprawled out on her knees, strumming the guitar and singing into the mic. The result was a very intimate recording. “We would pray before every session that God would come with her before she played, and God really showed up in every song. I have listened to it thousands of times and there are still moments that it shakes me to the bone when I hear them,” said Brew.
Morgan has been refining her music and songwriting talent for a few years now. She began writing and performing music over With Morgan, the message of honesty found two years ago with Tonelove, a high-school on her CD, is very much the essence of her life. band started with brother Josh Morgan and “Her heart is so pure for the Lord, more some friends. Tonelove performed in bars and other secular venues with a heart to reach so than anyone I have ever met,” said 18 iflourishonline.com | facebook.com/designedtoflourish
e the Grav Belly of n a Morg by Olivia
her own expectations. With Morgan, there is no pressure to be or act a certain way; there is only honesty. “I think her music is almost a portal for people to go from places of doubt to a place of hope and freedom,” Cates reflected on the meaning and depth Morgan brings to her songs. “She totally has the leadership and the ability to lead her own thing. I see big things for her in her future and ministry.” Purchase Olivia’s CD at http://www.purevolume. com/OliviaMorgan/albums/The+Threshing+Floor Julie Woodruff has been a writer since she was old enough to form letters with lead. Originally from the Midwest, Julie came to Regent University to finish her English degree East Coast style, where she enjoys drinking sweet tea and the advantages of warm Virginia Beach.
Singing Through the Seasons of Life David M. Edwards As a pianist, I have often marveled at the ability of those who play brass or woodwind instruments to force wind through a tiny space in an instrument in order to create a big sound. Our own physicality to make sound through our vocal cords requires wind. Wind is the voice’s power source, the fuel required to cause vibration and oscillation in the vocal cords producing sound for speech, singing, humming, etc. When I think of this concept in spiritual terms, I am reminded of the words of Jesus to Nicodemus when he was trying to wrap his mind around the concept of how an individual could be born again. Jesus assured him of the reality of such a miracle and used the wind as an example to further His point: “Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit” (John 3:7-8). Throughout Scripture wind is often used to represent the Person and work of the Holy Spirit. Like the wind that passes through our vocal cords in order to produce sound, we also need the wind to pass over our hearts and through our lives in order to create a new song for His glory and honor. Mary, the mother of our Lord, sang a new song on the heels of a fresh wind from heaven that blew over her life one day as a teenager to let her know that she had been chosen. Her song turned to concern when Jesus was 12, as she and Joseph searched frantically for Him, until at last they found Him in the Temple teaching others about God. When Jesus was a young man, Mary was right there beside Him as He performed His first miracle at a wedding. What must her song have been on that day? A few years later on a lonely hillside outside the walls of Jerusalem the wind blew again and, from her grieving heart, she offered up a sacrifice of praise, knowing that this is how it must be. Three days later, the wind shifted yet again amidst the sun’s soft glow that reached into an empty tomb. Now this eternal song of love became an anthem of worship that has changed the world. Looking at Mary’s presence in Jesus’ life, I can’t help but think that she must have been there when Jesus ascended into heaven. She was there before He ascended, and we know she was amongst the 120 in Jerusalem, praying on the Day of Pentecost as her Son had instructed them to do. That day, the rushing wind blew into the house where they gathered and ignited a song like no one had ever heard before, and yet we sing it still. Through the ups and downs, sunshine and rain, Mary allowed her life to give voice to the Wind that fueled it. Though the verses changed, the Subject was always the same. God is still God, whether we’re jumping on the mountain tops of life or walking through the fertile soil of the valleys. He is the One Constant in our lives; He does not change. The ability to sing in and through the changes is not always easy, but Scripture tells us that this obedience is what He requires. And somehow, when the wind shifts and blows through us, His chosen vessels, we must at all times render praise unto Him for He sees what we can’t, knows what we don’t, and transcends whatever reality we may face. Mary knew these things; we can too. Feeling follows behavior. We may not always feel like giving vent to a song of praise, yet as we do it anyway, somewhere between “Halle” and “lujah,” we find the strength to sing more boldly as the Wind picks us up and out of our self and ushers us into the Presence of God–the Maker of all our days! David M. Edwards (davidmedwards.com) is a songwriter, author and Creative Director of Regent University’s International Center for Worship. His new project, Here With You, is available through Maranatha! Music.
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Do you know the Salvation & Freedom Christ freely gives? “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Cor. 3:17). Christ sets us free by the power of His Spirit; then He maintains our freedom as we learn to live day-today in the power of His Spirit. Isaiah and Luke both talk about how Christ was appointed to offer this kind of freedom, in what is a ministry of the heart. He came to “bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness the prisoners...to comfort Photo by Emma Adessa all who mourn...to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes...a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair” (Is. 61:1-3). If you feel a pulling on your heart to know more about the Lord, or desire to renew or deepen your relationship with Him, we would be happy to point you towards solid resources, ministries or churches in our area. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Would you like to be profiled in Flourish to let others know about your business, products, services or latest creative pursuit? Be a part of our special advertising section in our upcoming issue to highlight Christian Women in Business. Let the Christian community get to know you better! Includes an advetorial article and photo. Call today. 348-5664 or email email@example.com. facebook.com/designedtoflourish | iflourishonline.com
Fruity Summer Recipes Perfect Homemade Lemonade ◦ ◦ ◦ Courtesy Simply Recipes
Makes 6 servings Total time: 40 minutes HEAT: ¾ - 1 cup sugar* 1 cup water COMBINE: 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (roughly 4 - 6 whole lemons) ADD: 3 - 4 cups cold water lemon slices * Alter for sweeter or more tart lemonade
Heat sugar and water in a small saucepan until sugar is dissolved completely to make a simple syrup. While sugar dissolves, extract juice from 4 - 6 lemons using a lemon juicer. If you don’t have a juicer, soak lemons in hot water and roll on counter to soften, cut in half and squeeze cut side up to remove juice. Combine juice and sugar water in a pitcher. Add 3 - 4 cups cold water, altering to your desired strength. Refrigerate 30 - 40 minutes. Add lemon juice if needed. Serve with ice and sliced lemons.
You don’t have to be at the fair to enjoy freshly-squeezed lemonade! Lemons are good for you. Play with the recipe to get just the right sweetness for your taste, then make great memories sitting outside sipping lemonade!
◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ Summer Fruit Salsa By Ann Page | Courtesy Allrecipes.com
Photo by Zsuzsanna Kilian
Makes 10 servings Total time: 45 minutes
This is an easy-to-make, five-star fruit salsa that goes great with crispy cinnamon wedge chips. Great to bring to summer get-togethers where your friends will heart you for this tasty, healthy appetizer. Fru-tastic!
FOR SALSA, COMBINE: 2 kiwis: peeled, diced 2 Golden Delicious apples: peeled, diced 8 oz. raspberries 1 lb. strawberries 2 Tbsp. sugar 1 Tbsp. brown sugar 3 Tbsp. any flavor fruit preserves FOR WEDGES, COAT: 10 flour tortillas (10-in.) cooking spray 2 Tbsp. cinnamon sugar
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In a large bowl, mix first seven ingredients. (Or have fun experimenting with your own favorite fruit combinations.) Cover and chill at least 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat one side of each tortilla with cooking spray. Cut into wedges and arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Sprinkle wedges with cinnamon sugar. Coat with cooking spray again. Bake wedges 8-10 minutes in batches. Allow to cool 15 minutes. Serve with chilled fruit salsa.
Backyard Barbecues The “gift of hospitality” is not required to create lasting memories and deepen the bonds of friendship! And summer is the perfect time to step out and throw a backyard BBQ – heck, being outside, you don’t even have to clean your house if you don’t want to. With that in mind, Flourish Senior Editor Cresta Shawver shows us how to throw a backyard BBQ without breaking a sweat! Choose from “No Frills” to “Fancy Schmancy” – depending on your time and budget. Enjoy!
No Frills Backyard BBQ ◦ Don’t let time or money stop you! Look what you can put together in just an hour or two. MINIMUM PLANNING TIME - One hour BUDGET NEEDED - $ • Invite some friends or neighbors for an impromptu get together by phone, e-mail or even via Facebook • Grab up pre-made hamburger patties, cold salads from the deli, canned drinks • Use disposable plates and cups— makes planning AND clean-up easier! • Ask your guests to bring dessert, a bag of chips or a beverage. • Set up the sprinklers for the kids to run wild. Then, just sit back and chit chat with your best friends!
Remember, entertaining isn’t about being impressive, having the best food or the fanciest house. It’s about having fun and deepening friendships. So relax, call some friends and family, and fire up the grill!
More Fancy Schmancy ◦ MINIMUM PLANNING TIME - One week BUDGET NEEDED - $$-$$$ • Use Evite to send colorful e-cards with the date and time of your barbecue • Pull out the recipe for Grandma’s Potato Salad, your mom’s baked beans, a fancy dessert etc. • Instead of the usual burgers and dogs, try kabobs. Marinate chicken for several hours before the party starts, then alternate chunks of meat with your favorite veggies on kabobs. Try zucchini, squash and grape tomatoes, yum! • Serve your guests on pretty party wear! Many discount stores offer melamine plates and cups for as little as a dollar each. Pick up something bright and festive to grace your table, or just pull some flowers from your garden. • Order a themed piñata, set up a ‘bobbing for fruit’ station or make some water balloons to keep the kids amused. You can also plan a few other easy party games. One of our favorites is Guess the Movie. List some of your favorite movies on index cards. Each guest draws a card, and on their turn acts out the movie. The rest of the party
tries to guess what the movie is.
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AidNow: Helping Those in Need Rebecca Brittingham
keep more of their food, have better sanitation and serve the students of their middle school and village more efficiently. Helping the people of Vietnam is just the type of project that caused AidNow president and founder Ann Christie to start the organization in 2010, with a goal of bringing education, health, sanitation and physical resources together to Imagine if your health and basic survival needs assist people both locally and globally. "Basically, we are here to help. Everyone. Love depended upon something as simple as a fence. That baffling thought was what compelled a group is a universal language and it's something that is in great demand in our current society," said Ann. of volunteers from Forefront Church in Virginia "Through our projects and connections, our goal Beach and AidNow, a Virginia Beach non-profit is to see all mankind raised to a better standard organization, to take time out from their daily of living." responsibilities to travel to hot, impoverished This year, in addition to their Jewel's Closet Vietnam to build a brick fence for the people in (see sidebar) AidNow became partners with the Ta Phin Village of Northern Vietnam. Forefront Ministry on the Vietnam project. "To the Western world, considering basic Forefront had safety and sanitation needs can be a foreign adopted the Ta Phin concept, but was a reality for the small middle village and for four school in the Ta Phin village," Vice President of years now has been AidNow, the organization that raised the money sending teams to for the fence, Monica Laurendeau explained. work in the area "Not only do buffalo sometimes trample the to provide teacher school's vegetable garden, which is the source conferences, clean of food for the students and teachers yearwater, infrastructure round, but the buffalo's waste also pollutes the support, computer labs and now the building of water, creating an atmosphere for infection the fence around the school in Ta Phin Village. and inflammatory disease. The stomach bug has "Having this fence is going to make a huge become especially threatening for the Ta Phin difference to the people of that school and Village," said Monica, who was also part of the village," said Monica. "It was such an honor to team that went to build the fence. "That is why be a part of it--meeting not only their physical something as simple as a fence may actually needs, but also building relationships that allow mean life or death for these lovely us to continue to show the love of people. For them it is also the Christ. It just goes to show that just difference between keeping or a few people coming together can losing the small amount of food make a difference!" they are able to grow." If you would like to help the village people This past year the middle of Vietnam or the homeless teens in our school, located in what is a own city by supporting AidNow, you may beautiful, rural, mountain village want to consider being a part of their in Ta Phin, was unable to provide upcoming worship event fundraiser. They are looking for musicians, silent auction lunch for close to 100 of their items and volunteers. Contact Ann Christie 250 students. This meant long, at firstname.lastname@example.org or by treacherous and even dangerous phone at (757) 650-4395 for information. walks for their students--a 45-minute walk home Rebecca Brittingham is a journalism student at Regent University. for lunch and then again to return. Now that the She has a passion and desire to use her writing to share what God is doing locally, nationally, and internationally. fence has been built, the hope is that they can iflourishonline.com | facebook.com/designedtoflourish
Jewel's Closet Currently, in the Hampton Roads area, it is amazing to consider that there are more than 500 homeless students. Being homeless is a travesty at any age, but brings unique problems for the teenager who may dread going to school when she may only have one, old, outdated outfit to wear. Although the public school system formed a clothing closet, they lacked supplies, and then had severe water damage that destroyed all the clothing. When AidNow learned of this catastrophe last year, they offered to take on this mission, giving birth to Jewel's Closet, which has become the primary storage unit for the clothing closet now helping homeless teens in Virginia Beach. "Our goal is to help provide nice, fashionable clothing and school supplies for each of these students," said Ann Christie, founder and president of AidNow, the non-profit to which Jewel's Closet is a part. Since many of the students are dealing with depression, separation anxiety and low self-esteem, AidNow strives to clothe the students in trendy, fashionable clothing to help build their self-esteem. In addition, Jewel's Closet will partner with a local hairdresser who has agreed to provide every student with a fresh haircut. According to Monica Laurendeau, AidNow vice president, "We can't control their environment; the least we can do is make them feel comfortable with what they are wearing and let them know that they are loved." Jewel's Closet is preparing for their first Back-toSchool Drive on August 19th in which they envision providing clothes and school supplies for each of the 500 homeless high school students in Hampton Roads. "These kids are going to get the clothes that they need," said Ann.
If you would like to get involved, visit www.aidnow.org for more information.
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