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Contents June / July 2012 Volume 4 l Number 2


Southern Sister Designs: Small Town Charm Meets Big City Style After a twenty-year hiatus in the fashion world, Tracey Satterwhite sought out the perfect space to realize her dream – owning her own piece of the fashion industry outside of the corporate environment. With a recipe for success and a desire to provide affordable styles to the every day woman, Tracey opened Southern Sister Designs in 2010 and continues to watch her business grow.

Features 24 Houston’s Celebrity Stylist Cerón

The jet-setting stylist known as Cerón has landed in Houston! Find out why this style pioneer has some of the city’s most notable socialites and fashionistas flocking to him for the latest trends in fashion.

Partners Melanie Schwank and Tracey Satterwhite.

28 Q&A with Bully Director Lee Hirsch

Entertainment Editor Nick Nicholson delves into the alarming world of bullying with Director Lee Hirsch who found inspiration for the film from his own experiences with bullying. Learn what prompted Lee to develop the film which aims to bring attention to a problem that affects over 13 million children and their families.

30 Escape to Galveston

Pack your bag and head out to beautiful Galveston Island for some fun in the sun! Lara Bell, Editor of absolutely! Memorial magazine, explores the best that Galveston has to offer so you can ensure maximum fun on your next weekend getaway!


focus on women

l June / July 2012


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Treatment by Ivan A. Rosales-Berber, MD After photo – 60 days after

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Medical Expert Author & Speaker

Scan to buy Dr. Shel’s new book: I am Woman Photo by Alisa Murray Photography

(281) 313.SHEL (7435) 1437 Hwy 6, Suite 100, Sugar Land, Tx 77478

Contents financial savvy 20 Suddenly Alone

What happens when life takes a turn?

pearls of wisdom

22 Inspirational Words Advocate Mental Health Awareness Teresa Cox Reading, RN


23 Things We Love Check out these fabulous finds for fabulous women.

31 Beach Tote Tips Tips on toting – and selecting – the best beach tote.

34 Antique Picker’s Paradise: Downtown Rosenberg and Richmond Take a trip back in time and find a few treasures, too!

40 Style Tips for Young Ladies



FAQ’s from today’s moms.


26 Tangerine Tango: The Pantone 2012 Color of the Year

33 Margaret Mitchell: American Rebel

Implement this vivacious color into your home with these simple tips.

Educational and entertaining, this film brings to life the world of author Margaret Mitchell.

chick flicks

21 Lidia Celebrates America: Weddings Beloved chef and cookbook author Lidia Bastianiach explores the culinary tradition of American weddings.

32 Bully



Follow the real-life story of children across America who are victims of bullying.


focus on women

l June / July 2012

37 W.E. Madonna’s take on the compelling love story of King Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson.

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Contents fow feedback

41 Heard Through the Grapevine Who’s saying what about Focus on Women.


stepping out with focus on women 45 Sugar Land Plastic Surgery Dr. John Nguyen breaks ground on his new 6,000 square foot facility in Sugar Land.

fine arts


By Tanya Sterling A Woman and Her Friendships

47 July 2012

43 Understanding Thyroid Disorders

Are you treating your body right? Don’t put off starting your healthier lifestyle another day.

entertaining 38 Adult Popsicles

Enjoy these simple recipes that are perfect for lounging by the pool.

44 Flavors of the World

focus on women

l June / July 2012

By Alisa Murray Don’t know what to do anymore? Just ask!

48 The Last Word

36 This One Body …


42 Woman to Woman

• Next to Normal • ExxonMobil Summer Symphony Nights • 25th Annual Houston’s Funniest Person Contest Grand Finale

health & wellness

Experience European cuisine with Asian influences at BLU in Sugar Land Town Square.


46 June 2012

• Disney’s The Lion King • 2012 Summer Harvest Festival • Houston Symphony presents Wizard of Oz: Film with Live Orchestra





well woman Learn the symptoms of hyper and hypothyroidism.

sary r e v i n 5th An Meet the JEWELS of Fort Bend

Joyous, Extraordinary Women Enriching Lives

Mary Favre Jacqueline Chaumette

Melissa Hayslip

proudly announces the 2012 Sandra Billingsley

Kathy Huebner

Champagne Reception, Luncheon and Style Show BENEFITTING

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Alisa Murray Photography - Official Photographer J Loggins Jewelers - Official Jeweler Pamela Printing - Official Printer

MASTER OF CEREMONIES Michael Garfield The High-Tech Texan速

Safari Texas Ranch - Official Venue Salon Eben & Day Spa - Official Salon May W. Tape, D.D.S. - Official Entertainment Sponsor

Tickets & Sponsorship Opportunities u 281-690-4242 or

editor’s point of view I

Patti Parish-Kaminski, Editor in Chief



Southern sisters Lisa Fredrickson and Patti Parish-Kaminski.

s women, supporting, helping, lifting each other up is part of our nature. We bond with our girlfriends, our daughters, our female family members and colleagues. It’s an intrinsic part of who we are and what we stand for. It’s a sisterhood: an association or unification of women with a common cause. It’s unique to women, and it’s just one of the many reasons I feel blessed to not only be a woman but to teach my daughter the value – and importance of – sisterhood. Tracey Satterwhite believes in the importance of sisterhood, and she has built a successful business with a sisterly concept. Her small town boutique with big city charm – Southern Sister Designs – has been built on the principle of sisterhood and girlfriend marketing has been key to her success. With five partners and a unique business model, Tracey has created an eclectic boutique in an off the beaten path historic building where when you enter, they know your name. According to Tracey, “We all have commonalities even though we’re different ages, from different backgrounds – we are all the same women with the same challenges in life. We are all a southern sister.” I couldn’t have said it better myself. And, after visiting just one time, you’ll realize that yes, you’re a southern sister, too! In this issue, there are some great girlfriend getaways for you and your sisters. Messina Hof’s 2012 Harvest Festival starts in July where you can pick and stomp grapes as part of their annual harvest crew. And, of course, you can enjoy the fruits of your labor. Galveston is back since Hurricane Ike, and it’s better than ever with even more things to see and do. From the opening of Tilman Fertitta’s new Pleasure Pier to the historic hotels to the Tree Sculptures Tour, Galveston is a great getaway for you and your girls. There’s an antique mecca just a short drive from Houston perfect for an afternoon of picking with the girls. Rosenberg and Richmond offer some amazing vintage shops and antique malls, and even a few restaurants and a wine bar. Read about the finds these amazing towns have to offer and plan a day in a picker’s paradise. Of course, for the ultimate girls evening out, Tracey and I would like to invite all of our southern sisters out to a very special Stepping Out event. On August 2nd, Focus on Women and Southern Sister Designs is hosting an adult girls’ night out. Join us for Fifty Shades of Grey, and let’s have a cocktail and toast sisterhood. In January of 1997, Madeleine Albright was sworn in as the first woman Secretary of State in the history of the United States. A woman in a traditionally man’s world of high stakes politics, she was a trailblazer for women and had a unique perspective on sisterhood. Known for her no nonsense demeanor, during a speech at a luncheon celebrating the WNBA’s All-Decade Team, Albright told her fellow sisters playing – and succeeding – in a traditional men’s sport exactly how she felt: “There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.” Madame Secretary said it best. Stay focused!

Patti Parish-Kaminski


focus on women

l June / July 2012

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Nick Nicholson is the Entertainment Editor for Focus on Women and the Film and, Entertainment Critic for CNN Radio, the Fort Bend Star newspaper, Fort Bend Focus and Pearland Focus magazines. He is the co-founder of the Houston Film Critics Society and is currently the President of the organization. In Q & A with Bully Director Lee Hirsch on page 28, Nick talks to Hirsch about his chilling documentary that follows several children and their families across America who struggle with being bullied. Nick and his wife, Mikki, reside in Sugar Land, Texas.

Veteran journalist and television host Lara Bell serves as the Publisher for absolutely! Memorial magazine and is a familiar face in the greater Houston area, hosting a weekly magazine show, Wild about Houston, on KTBU-TV Channel 55 for fourteen years. In Houston’s Celebrity Stylist on page 24, Lara brings us Cerón, a jet-setting style pioneer. On page 30 in Escape to Galveston, Lara explores all that the island has to offer with highlights of the best stops to make when visiting. Lara and her family reside in Memorial.

The Food Editor and Publisher for absolutely! Katy magazine, Claudia Richter brings not only her journalism skills but her extensive culinary background with her reviews of Houston area restaurants. In this issue, Claudia visits BLU Restaurant + Lounge on page 44 and learns how Chef Junnajet Hurapan uses Eurpoean and Asian influences to create delectable cuisine at one of Sugar Land Town Square’s newest eateries. With a degree in culinary arts from Horst Mager Culinary Institute, Claudia and her family reside in Katy, Texas.

Tanya Sterling, wife and mother of three, is the founder and director of the JOY Ministry, a special needs ministry at First Methodist Houston, and a freelance writer. On page 48 in A Woman and Her Friends, Tanya explores the relationships that women build and why some are longer lasting than others. Tanya and her family reside in Sugar Land, Texas.


focus on women

l June / July 2012

Achieve the

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guest columnists Will Hardee

Hardee Investment Group Page 20

Sophia Vassillou 20



Sophia Designs Page 26

Joan Frances Freelance Writer Page 34

Heather Reichert, RD, LD, CDE Team Beachbody Page 36




Stephenie Cox

absolutely! Memorial Page 38

Beth Newman Newman Image Page 40

Alisa Murray

Alisa Murray Photography Page 42



Dr. Vidhya Subramanian Methodist Sugar Land Hospital Page 43

June/July 2012 Vol. 4 l No. 2 4655 Techniplex Dr. Suite 400 • Stafford, TX 77477 To advertise call 281-690-4242 • TOLL FREE 1-888-430-7469 Direct mailed to physicians in the area and to Focus on Women subscribers, and available at demand distribution locations. PUBLISHERS GENERAL MANAGER EDITOR IN CHIEF ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR SENIOR ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES OFFICE MANAGER ART DIRECTOR ART & PRODUCTION CONSULTANT GRAPHIC DESIGNERS WEB DESIGNER


Tracey Satterwhite Photo by Nesossi Studios


focus on women

l June / July 2012

Michael & Lisa Fredrickson L. Dean West Patti Parish-Kaminski Nick Nicholson Jessica Kij Susie Ainsworth Stephenie Cox Robyn Miller Norma Loredo Grace Belleza Joey Belleza Elizabeth Pace Debi Beauregard Joey Belleza /

The views and opinions expressed by our advertisers and columnists do not necessarily reflect those of the Publishers and their staff. 2012 Focus on Women Magazine. No material from this publication may be copied or in any way reproduced without written permission from the publishers. Published by

absolutely! focus media

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cover story By Patti Parish-Kaminski Photo by Nesossi Studios

Partners LeAnn Hill and Tracey Satterwhite.

Southern Sister Designs Small Town Charm Meets Big City Style


ake a hundred plus year old building in an historic, small town, add a former teacher, mix in five partners, and what do you get? A successful business model touting a unique perspective on retail with an eclectic boutique filled with small town charm – otherwise known as Southern Sister Designs. The chef for this recipe for success is former middle school teacher Tracey Satterwhite who began her career in the executive training program for the May Company. In the retail world, Tracey served as an assistant buyer for Foley’s in a “very corporate” environment and decided to pursue something more creative: she returned to school to get her teaching certificate. “So much of teaching is creative,” said Tracey. “You have to get all types of kids to learn, and there’s a lot of creativity involved in that.” Tracey taught middle school in HISD and elementary school in LCISD for fifteen years, and in her spare time, participated in a few shows at various festivals. “I always wanted to get back to my first career in fashion but on my own terms – not necessarily in the corporate world,” Tracey shared. “I was sort of thinking about opening my own place, and finding the right spot was what did it. When we found 817 Third Street in downtown Rosenberg, I knew that was it.”


focus on women

l June / July 2012

Location, Location, Location Tracey wasn’t thinking of locating in Rosenberg but fell in love with the small town charm. “It was the building, the history. I was a history teacher and major. I wanted something different – not a strip center. Location, location, location was key, and for me, location meant the feel of the building.” The building Tracey found on Third Street was preserved by local businessman Bill Butler who owns several buildings in Historic Downtown Rosenberg. “All of Bill’s buildings are historically sound,” said Tracey. “He maintains integrity of his buildings.” The Third Street location was by no means ready for Tracey and her concept. She and her husband Larry found the building in early 2010, and it took a great deal of work to make it into a boutique. “It was a leap of faith,” said Tracey. Larry was very supportive of Tracey’s dream. “Larry and I are from entrepreneur families. My dad owned a grocery store, and Larry’s dad owned a car business. We are both risk takers.”


and on

Fifty Shades of Grey Adult Girls’ Night Out Thursday, August 2 5:30 - 7 pm at

Southern Sister Designs 817 Third Street

Historic Downtown Rosenberg

Creating the Concept From the beginning, Tracey developed Southern Sister Designs with a unique concept in mind. “I learned at Foley’s that different buyers have a passion for different items. Their individual, unique perspectives bring a lot of creativity to the merchandise.” Tracey’s plan was to offer more items, larger selections and a wider price range by bringing partners to Southern Sister Designs. Tracey brought in five partners to help create the eclectic boutique experience that is now Southern Sister Designs, and each partner showcases their merchandise in their own section of the store. “All of the partners have a different talent to offer,” said Tracey. “We are very much a team. Individually, we’re not as good as a whole, but together, it all works.”

Grey Attire Grey Goose Martinis Lingerie Fashion Show


Partners Debbie Kahanak and Tracey Satterwhite.

For updates, visit June / July 2012 l


While an important aspect of the store’s mission is to support their community, the community, in turn, has supported them. “There’s no way we could have been successful by ourselves,” shared Tracey. “Our customers have helped with girlfriend marketing – telling their friends about us. We have great neighbors and as a business community, we all work together to promote one another. We’re a family here in the ‘Berg.’ We care about and support one another.” Close to the former teacher’s heart is Lunches of Love, an organization that provides free lunches for children who normally receive free lunch at school during school Southern Sisters Tracey Satterwhite, Melanie Schwank, Debbie Kahanak holidays and the summer. “We think food and LeAnn Hill. isn’t a big deal, but in our own county, there The partners behind Tracey’s concept of are hungry children,” Southern Sister Designs include Melanie said Tracey who served Schwank, Debbie Kahanak, LeAnn Hill, as the Title I CoordiJudy Sanders and Herb and Lori Conley. nator at HISD’s Jane Mandi Bronsell has recently joined the Long Middle School team with her Tiaras & Tutus birthday in charge of the grants party tea room. for the free lunch Tracey handles the day to day operations program. “There’s of the boutique that because of the partner always an opportunity concept, carries a vast and unique selection of – come pack a lunch!” merchandise at all price points. “When we While developing started the boutique, all of us didn’t want it the concept for the to be the kind of place where people couldn’t boutique was always Partners Mandi Bronsell and Tracey Satterwhite in afford anything,” said Tracey. “We have Old in the back of Tracey’s Tiaras & Tutus located in Southern Sister Designs. Gringo boots in the $500 range and earrings mind, finding the perfor $3. And, we provide the same gift wrap fect name took some for a $3 pair of earrings that we would for an ers. He knew what kind of soda they drank, thought. “The concept for the name of the Old Gringo boot. Customer service is very who had a baby – his social life was at the boutique was women as all being sisters or important to all of us.” store. We wanted Southern Sister Designs to friends,” said Tracey. “We all have commonThe small town charm of the building be able to build relationships with our cusalities even though we’re different ages, from transcends into how Tracey and her partners tomers.” different backgrounds – we are all the same treat their customers. “We tell people when Tracey recalled that her dad always women with the same challenges in life. they first come in to just make yourself at opened the door for every customer when We’re all a southern sister. We joke with peohome,” said Tracey. “We want Southern Sisthey walked out. “I do that now! Customer ple all of the time when they come in and tell ter Designs to feel like your home away from service is so underrated today. People have them, ‘Now you’re a southern sister, too!’” home. We want our customers to feel at ease limited time and money to spend, and they and know that we cared enough to ask quesare choosing to spend their time with you tions and got to know you a little bit.” whether they buy anything or not. It’s not always about the sell; it’s about relationships.” The relationship that Tracey has formed Steeped in Tradition with both customers and neighbors has Tracey’s small town roots are evident in made a significant impact on the success of how she interacts with both her customers Southern Sister Designs. “We wanted to be and her neighbors. Her father’s grocery store involved in the community and what was was in a remote location in Kirbyville, Texas, around us.” Southern Sister Designs has and he built his customer base on old-fashdonated to many community organizations ioned customer service. “I grew up watchincluding hosting fundraisers for neighbors ing my dad grow his business – very similar in need. “We want to use the store to help Southern Sisters in action: Jole to what I’m doing – in the middle of a cane and do what we can to come together to help Holchak, Meg Gonzales and Tracey field. He built relationships with his customeach other.” Satterwhite supporting Lunches of



focus on women

l June / July 2012

Women’s Apparel, Jewelry & Accessories Miss Me Jeans • Old Gringo Boots Johnny Was • Free People • Consuela Krista Lee • Big Star Jeans Havaianas • Corral Boots • Yellow Box Shoes Infant & Children’s Apparel Home Décor & Gifts Monogramming Available

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June / July 2012 l


financial savvy I

Prepared by the Hardee Investment Group and RBC Wealth Management

Girls just want to have fund$

Suddenly Alone


t was late afternoon on Friday, February 1, 1963. I was at a classmate’s house celebrating his 8th birthday. He was born on Christmas Day, and this was his very first birthday party. I usually spent my Friday afternoons with my Dad at his shop, but today was an exception. It was a birthday party for 8 yearolds. When the party was over, I went looking for my Mom, but I couldn’t find her. Instead, a friend of my mother’s said she was there to pick me up. She didn’t have a son, but I thought nothing of it. It was a fun party, and I couldn’t wait to get home to tell everyone about it. When I got to our house, it looked like we were having a party. There were cars and people everywhere. I couldn’t wait to get inside. It took me a little while to understand that it wasn’t what an 8 year-old thought it was. My Mom was crying and my brothers and sister were in the back room and everyone looked so sad. My Dad had been killed in an automobile accident that afternoon. I was too young to understand all the ramifications this event would have on my Mother and our family. Suddenly, my Mom was all alone and all on her own. It would permanently change our lives. Some of the changes were: • Mom would have to go from homemaker to “bread winner.” She had to prepare to find a job. Ultimately, she worked three jobs. • Who would care for four young children? How would they get to school, do their homework, live a kid’s life? • How do you balance a checkbook, pay bills, repair a car, roof

or lawnmower? All the things Dad had done. • How do you take a lump sum of life insurance proceeds and make it last a lifetime? • What do you do with the family business? • How do you cope with the loneliness and who can you talk to? These are but a few of the questions that didn’t exist 24 hours before. Unfortunately, I’ve seen this happen too many times in my life. Most spouses are ill-prepared to handle all the things they must face emotionally and financially. I have spent most of my career helping widows and divorcees with their financial fears and concerns. It’s never too late to start preparing. It’s only too late if you never ask. Are financial fears and concerns keeping you awake at night? We know what that feels like, and we want to help. Call the Hardee Investment Group today at 713-853-0879 or visit us online at to learn how together we can develop a personal plan and together we will calm those fears. This article is provided by H. H. Will Hardee, AWM, a Financial Advisor at RBC Wealth Management’s Houston Center office, and was prepared by or in cooperation with RBC Wealth Management. The information included in this article is not intended to be used as the primary basis for making investment decisions nor should it be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any specific security. RBC Wealth Management does not endorse this organization or publication. Consult your investment professional for additional information and guidance. RBC Wealth Management does not provide tax or legal advice. RBC Wealth Management, a division of RBC Capital Markets LLC, Member NYSE/FINRA/SIPC.

Of the Elderly Living in Poverty, 75% are Women and 80% of Those Women Were Not Poor When their Husbands Were Alive Proper planning can help prevent unwanted results. Don’t become a casualty of procrastination. It is never too late to begin getting your finances in order. We can help. Give us a call.

Hardee Investment Group (713) 853-0869 • (800) 838-0757 Source: Rich Women, Kim Kiyosaki © 2011 RBC Wealth Management, a division of RBC Capital Markets, LLC, Member NYSE/FINRA/SIPC.


focus on women

l June / July 2012

Hardee Investment Group


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By Teresa Cox Reading, RN

Inspirational Words Advocate Mental Health Awareness


he 7th Annual Beacon of Hope Banquet benefitting the Mental Health America of Fort Bend County was great event with an awesome turn out. Thanks to everyone from the board members to the volunteers and guests. The Advisory Board did a wonderful job on the silent auction, the sponsors were generous and the entertainment fantastic! Our work for advocating mental health is not over, but with the annual banquet, it’s definitely a kick-off for advocacy! In that spirit, one of Mental Health America of Fort Bend County’s (MHAFBC) board members, Dr. Eugenia Bloomstrom, shared with us an inspiring message: “My passion as a mental health provider is to be an advocate for the mental health community. I have some major concerns that the mental health community is not being treated like the medical surgical patients and that disconnect of the body and mind really upsets me.

“Currently, it is estimated that roughly 67% of adults and 80% of children requiring mental health services do not receive help, often because of discriminatory insurance practices. In spite of the Parity Act, this discriminatory practice continues to exist. “The medical surgical providers do not always know to care for these patients. Where, when or how we disconnected the body and mind, I do not know, but an individual with major depression or hallucinations related to psychosis needs to be cared for the same as the diabetic or the individual needing a stint. “My involvement with MHAFBC is due to that passion, and specifically, in Fort Bend County where mental health care is limited. The need to educate the public and other healthcare providers about mental health is paramount to our society’s success in promoting a healthy community.” Inspired?! During the month of May, Mental Health Month, we attempted to spread



New patients now being accepted for TMS Therapy for Depression. To find out more call our office at 281-494-4471. William H. Reading, MD

the motivation to our readers and colleagues to pass this message on, not only for those thirtyone days in the month of May, but beyond, hoping that Dr. Bloomstrom’s energy is felt through her words and will inspire individuals for many months to come. Congratulations to MHAFBC’s Gay Williams Beacon of Hope Award Recipient Linda Shultz and Community Service Bell Ringer Award Recipient Gail Best. Your work inspires us all. For more information about Mental Health America of Fort Bend or for questions about our services, please call Teresa Reading at 281-630-6210. Teresa Cox Reading is a Registered Nurse, Clinician and Practice Administrator for Reading Recovery, Psychiatric and Psychological Services. She is on the board of Mental Health America of Fort Bend County and Committee for Suicide Prevention.

READING RECOVERY, PSYCHIATRIC AND PSYCHOLOGICAL SERVICES Improving the quality of life for families • ADD • Mood Problems • ADHD • Emotional Instability • Adult ADD • Bipolar Variants • Depression • Addictive Diseases • Anxiety Disorders • Impaired School/Work • OCD Performances • Eating Disorders • Temper/Anger Problems • Behavioral Problems Congratulations to Mental Health America on a Successful Banquet

Teresa Cox Reading, RN

Visit our website and video at

Call: 281-494-4471 12603 Southwest Freeway, Ste. 510 Stafford, Texas, 77477 Hours: Monday - Thursday: 12 noon - 10 pm


focus on women

l June / July 2012

Congratulations to Linda Shultz Beacon of Hope Recipient

Congratulations to Gail Best Community Bell Ringer Award Recipient

The List: Things We Love


Check out these fabulous finds for fabulous women!

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Transform your space in minutes and add that finishing touch to your space with this inexpensive and innovative product! Dali Decals are non-damaging, removable wall stickers that come in a plethora of designs, shapes and sizes. Installation is a breeze, too! Not sure if these gems will work on your walls? Order a decal sample pack for as little as $2 and give it a try!

Succulent, sweet and irresistible, Essence Prunes by Sunsweet put a whole new spin on this already delicious super fruit. Available in cherry, orange and lemon, the high fiber snack is low in calories and is a smart – and sweet – alternative to your typical afternoon snack.


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Distinctive Scentsy warmers melt specially formulated wax with the heat of a low-watt light bulb, releasing your favorite scent throughout your home or office safely with no flame, smoke or soot. A variety of designs, available in full-size, mid-size and plug-in warmers, allow you to add a beautiful accent piece in place of your old candles. June / July 2012 l



Houston’s Celebrity

By Lara Bell

Stylist M

ost people love their stylists, and for many Memorial residents, famed hair stylist Cerón is the man they turn to for streaks of blonde, brown and everything in between. But many Memorialites may not realize that Cerón did not start out styling the ladies. He began his career in Paris after earning a degree in International Business and working as a caterer. However, the desire to style ladies never left Cerón from the time he was twelve and styled his mom’s hair.


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Cerón styling a model for a fashion show.

“The women in Houston have impeccable style, and they amaze me daily how well they represent themselves,” said Cerón. In the late 80s, his partner was wellknown high fashion stylist Frederic Gebhardt. “When I was with Frederic, I can remember expressing my desire to fulfill my childhood ambitions of styling hair,” said Cerón. “Frederic told me I was ‘too fat, too old and Mexican’ therefore, I would never make it as a hair dresser. So to prove him wrong, I went to work for his competitor, Jean Saberny, and that changed my life.” “Saberny is known for his innovative looks shown on the runways of famed fashion power houses Yves Saint Laurent, Christian LaCroix, Emmanuel Ungaro and many more, so I was able to learn a lot as he mentored me,” shared Cerón. Katy Mayell, Karen Mayell, Cerón, Mary Beth Aspromonte, Kelli Blanton In 1992, Cerón came to Houston, and and Diane Lokey Farb. the minute he stepped foot on Texas soil, a star was born. He began his career as a Those wanting The summer months are especially busy stylist at Urban Reto work at Cerón’s for stylists with all of the summer brides. treat, and in 2005, salon are “thrown to “Brides are a huge part of any salon’s busihe branched out on the wolves” on their ness. This is the biggest day of their lives, his own and hasn’t first day. The minand they need to look perfect.” Cerón said, looked back. His ute they step foot in surprisingly, the younger brides are going salon, appropriately the salon, they are for the more formal looks this summer, and called Cerón at Upon the floor touchthe brides who are a little older tend to lean town Park, is home ing the ladies’ hair. towards the romantic side with loose curls. to some of Houston’s Cerón says he knows “Braids are also the most popular trend we savviest socialites inin the very first minare seeing this summer with brides as well as cluding Memorial’s utes if they have the ladies looking for a fun look for a summer Becca Cason Thrash “it” factor. “I have party,” said Cerón. and Diane Lokey taught 22 people in As the many charitable events unfold Farb. “The women my 18 years, but I throughout the year, there is one that is parin Houston have imcannot teach hair ticularly special to Cerón. “Legacy is very peccable style, and color. It is very spedear to me. I love a place in Houston where they amaze me daily cific. I can teach the men, woman and children can go if they Cerón with Diane Lokey Farb. how well they repreformulas, but the art need medical care.” Legacy Community Photo by Michelle Watson/ sent themselves,” said of coloring is someHealth Services is a full-service, community Cerón. thing you are born health center that provides comprehensive The number of well-heeled ladies who with,” said Cerón. Nonetheless, new stylists primary healthcare services to all Houstodepend on Cerón is shocking. Some days, flock to his salon to learn from the master in nians in a culturally sensitive, judgment-free he has as many as 30 ladies in his chair, so hopes of making the cut and working at such and confidential environment. one has to wonder if he has the best kept a prestigious institution. While this jet-setting stylist may hold secrets in Houston. “I don’t think there In 2010, Dallas came calling, and the keys to many Memorialite’s secrets, are secrets. I think I have gotten where I Cerón opened a second location on the his secret is that he is very grateful for the am because when women come to me, third floor of Neiman Marcus. He now life he has in Houston. “I am grateful they feel vulnerable in my chair, and they travels back and forth between the two that Frederic Gebhardt told me I was trust me in many cases more than their salons. “It does get exhausting, but I am ‘too fat, too old and Mexican’ to be taken best friends. I value that trust, plus I have very happy, and it’s a dream come true to seriously as a stylist because that actually a bad memory!” said Cerón. work in both cities,” shared Cerón. made my dreams come true.”

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home I

By Sophia Vassiliou



The Pantone 2012 Color of the Year


ach year, the Pantone Color Institute forecasts a new “Color of the Year.” This year’s pick is Tangerine Tango. The “Color of the Year” influences product development and purchasing decisions in multiple industries. This translates to an influx of this color in fashion, home and industrial design, as well as product packaging and graphic design. The process in choosing the color involves Pantone experts scouring the world to see what is happening in every possible industry. Pantone arrived at this particular orange because from a psychological point, it can be uplifting and sophisticated, but at the same time, dramatic and seductive. Tangerine Tango is an orange with a lot of depth to it. “It is hopeful and optimistic,” said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director to the Pantone Color Institute. “Reminiscent for the radiant shadings of a sunset, Tangerine Tango marries the vivaciousness and adrenaline rush of red with the friendliness and warmth of yellow, to

Sophia’s Tips:

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form a high-visibility, magnetic hue that emanates heat and energy.” How do you infuse some “Tango” into your home? Since orange is so vivid, use a little for a big impact. Tango can be highlighted against soft greens and blues to provide an interesting balance as they soften this spicy tone. For a more subtle look, use it with earth tones. Or, choose shades next to orange on the color wheel for a warmer affect. Don’t forget to add interest to exterior spaces as we Tango into the summer months! For more decorating tips, contact Sophia at

When to Use Tangerine – Tango Style!

Hang a piece of artwork or add a simple chair to pop against a cool background.


focus on women



Paint a focal wall or small room for a dramatic change. l June / July 2012

Use small end tables to showcase a punch of color.



Add drapery panels with a geometric pattern for a tint of Tango.

5 6

Pillows, as usual, are the easiest way to transform a space.

“The spirited reddish orange continues to provide the energy boost we need to recharge and move forward.”


4 6

Bring orange tones outdoors in gardens, an outdoor umbrella, pillows or cushions.

Have fun as you “Tango” with this vivacious and appealing reddish orange!



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By Nick Nicholson

with Director

Lee Hirsch


ullying in school is an epidemic of huge proportions. With over 13 million children bullied in American schools this year, it is without a doubt the most common form of violence experienced today. Lee Hirsch is the director of Bully and an award winning documentary filmmaker. I had the opportunity to sit down with Hirsch and obtain some of his thoughts regarding his most recent documentary that is, simply put, a must see for parents and children alike. What was the impetus behind Bully? Was there a particular incident that prompted you to make this film, and when did you begin work on it? Bully is a deeply personal film for me: I was bullied throughout middle school and much of my childhood. In many ways, those experiences and struggles helped shape my world view and my direction as a filmmaker. Bullying was a subject I wanted very much to explore in a film, and it was always on the list of projects I wanted to develop. But, it stayed an abstraction for a long time. I was too scared to start developing the idea in earnest because it would mean confronting my own demons and revisiting a painful period of my life.



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By the early spring of 2009, a documentary about bullying had moved to the forefront of my mind. Then, in April of 2009, came news about two 11-year-old boys – Carl Joseph Walker Hoover of Massachusetts and Jaheem Herrera of Georgia – who took their own lives. Both deaths were linked to trauma from chronic bullying. In the wake of those tragedies, I turned my full focus to making this film. I partnered with producer Cynthia Lowen, and we began research and fundraising. Can you discuss the research you did for the film? Were you surprised to learn that the Department of Education estimated the number of bullied kids at over 13 million? Not surprisingly, the internet was a major source of information and contacts. All over the internet – in chat rooms, on websites, on YouTube – kids and families were desperate to find a way to voice their experiences of bullying, harassment and loss. Most of these families shared several things in common: they had been coping with the bullying for years; they had received no support from their school administrators after numerous complaints; and they felt they had nowhere to turn. There were thousands of these post-


ings, filled with frustration and anger. People needed to tell their stories from the frontlines, and that defined our approach to Bully. We also did extensive academic research for this film which included working with a number of nationally recognized experts in the field of bullying prevention. We attempted to translate a number of daunting statistics and studies into real-life experiences and potential stories. Through each of the five different stories in the film, we were able to explore different facets of bullying and to show how universal a problem it is crossing boundaries of race, class and geography. From that perspective, the figure of 13 million represents youth from every single community in the United States. The film’s central character is Alex, a 12-year-old in his first year of middle school. How did Alex come to take part in the film? Our primary goal – which was also our primary challenge – was to actually capture bullying on camera. Cynthia and I knew the only way to do this was to embed ourselves at a school, preferably for the length of the academic year. In July of 2009, we presented our idea for the film to the Sioux City Community School Board requesting


Students on the school bus in Bully.

so it wasn’t apparent that ultimate loss. But, we filmed with four famiwe were focusing on Alex. lies. The youngest child lost was 9-year-old How did Montana Lance who hung himself in the you find the nurse’s office at his elementary school. other families that parWere you ever tempted to inticipated in Bully? tercede when you witnessed We started the kids being bullied? Documentary filmprocess by reachmakers always have to deal with issues of ing out to kids and families across the U.S. becoming personally involved with the We spoke at length on the phone and in story they’re telling, but it seems like it person about their experiences and struggles. would be especially sensitive when you’re Many of these families we met through postdealing with vulnerable kids. How diffiings on online message boards,, cult was it for you to hold back, and did The Ellen Show, Facebook and YouTube. We you have any sort of litmus test for when got early support from the producers of The you might step in? Ellen Show, who did a show about Carl WalkThis was enormously challenging, er Hoover, who was relentlessly bullied, called in part because there were legal reagay and told he acted like a girl. They agreed sons not to physically intercede. But what to pass along a message from our team to a we saw on that final bus ride with Alex was number of families who had written in lookso alarming that it became a breaking point ing for help. That led us to Kelby in Tuttle, for us. Though it was a difficult decision in Oklahoma. We met some families through the moment, we decided to bring evidence of reading about their struggles in the news. A what was happening to the school, the Sioux young man in Georgia made headlines when City Police Department and Alex’s parents. he tackled a 14-year-old girl who had taken This absolutely put us into the story and is out a handgun on a school bus. We were cuacknowledged in the film. Also, because we rious: what could have prompted this young were not monitoring audio as we shot, some woman to bring a gun on her bus in the first of the instances of violence that Alex endured place? We suspected it might have been bullyonly became apparent months later when were ing, and that turned out to be the case. That’s in the editing room. A significant part of this how Ja’Meya became a subject in the film. journey was and remains the relationships that Newspaper reporting also led us to the Longs developed between me and the film’s subjects. in Georgia, and the Smalleys in Oklahoma, The kids and their parents became our partboth of whom lost their children to suicide. ners. Alex wanted the world to know what he Did you know going into experienced, and that simple fact was always in the project that you wanted my mind as we filmed. to tell the stories of families whose bulAlex and I talked regularly about what was lied children had committed suicide? going on in school and what he felt comfortSuicide is the ultimate consequence able with, in terms of my filming. of bullying, so yes, we did know early on that we wanted to tell the stories of parents whose children had committed suicide due to bullying. We wanted people to be aware of how high the stakes are and to dispel the notion that bullying is just “kids being kids.” What we couldn’t have imagined was how many there would be. In the film, you meet two families, the Longs and the Alex Libby in Bully. Smalleys, who endured this


permission to film throughout the district for the 2009/2010 school year. The Board felt it was an important project, and they agreed to be partners in the process. This was a huge leap of faith and represented a brave commitment to their ongoing bullying prevention programs. The Board was willing to take a tough look at their own community through the camera’s lens. They wanted to see where efforts were succeeding and where there was still work to be done. We decided to spend a year as “flies on the wall” inside East Middle School in Sioux City. We met Alex before the first day of school. He was just beginning 7th grade and had been chronically bullied since grade school. In following Alex over the course of the year, during which he was severely bullied, we were able to see not only the huge toll bullying takes on the kids who are bullied, but also on their families. And, we witnessed how administrators and schools are profoundly challenged in successfully dealing with bullying. Bully documents Alex being bullied on the school bus. Were you surprised that kids would do this in full view of a movie camera? Kids had been bullying Alex for so long, with such impunity, that they had no fear of consequences. So while the bullying on camera was initially surprising, the reasons for it soon made sense. We were also shooting on the Canon 5d Mark II, which looked like a still photographic camera to the kids, so a lot of them were not necessarily aware that we were actually shooting video. Because we spent so much time in the school, we eventually became like the wallpaper and were able to witness what a very typical day looked like. That said, we believe that the bullying was also much worse when the camera was not present. One thing that we were very careful about, however, was to protect Alex from any negative attention or increased bullying by virtue of us following him over the year. We filmed with lots of kids, in lots of classes, and at lots of different kinds of school events,






June / July 2012 l


Escape t o GALVESTON feature

By Lara Bell


you haven’t been south on I-45 and crossed over the causeway onto to Galveston Island since Hurricane Ike, you are missing out because Galveston is back. This summer is the perfect time to pull out an overnight bag, load up the kids and escape for a long weekend to rediscover the new – and improved – fun that is literally at your back door. Here are some of my family favorites!

Tremont House Galveston’s historic Tremont House.

I know when you think of Galveston, you think of the beach; however, the Strand District is full of fabulous restaurants, live music and great boutiques. The Tremont House is smack dab in the middle of it all, and the rooms are oversized with tall ceilings and are simply charming. The Tremont House also unveiled a new, sophisticated, modern lounge atmosphere for The Rooftop Bar located four stories above street level. The Rooftop Bar is the only outdoor venue on the Island to offer a bird’s eye view of Galveston. Guests can see the historic harbor, downtown, ship channel, beachfront and other landmarks from this rooftop setting. The Tremont House is always a must stay on my trip.

Soon to open: The Pleasure Pier boasts 16 rides, a restau rant, gift shop and more! Photo courtesy of

The Pleasure Pier The most talked about property Landry’s CEO Tilman Fertitta has his hand in now is the anticipated Pleasure Pier. This amusement park on the site of the old Flagship Hotel on the Seawall is going to attract plenty of attention as the Ferris Wheel and other rides tower above the sea.

The Galveston Island Nature Tourism Council will lead you on a fascinating tour of Galveston’s top locations for birding, nature outings and other outdoor adventures! Galveston Bay – along with the Gulf of Mexico – is the center of the area’s nature tourism industry offering birding, dolphin watching, fishing, kayaking, camping, national wildlife refuges and nature parks. Located on the trans-Gulf migration route, Galveston offers more than 300 species of birds that reside and travel through the island during fall and spring migrations.

West End Nature Tour


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Hotel Galvez Last year, Hotel Galvez celebrated its centennial jubilee, and this majestic hotel is still the “grand dame” of the island. The Hotel Galvez Hall of History is a permanent exhibit housed in the lower level of the hotel. This exhibit features items that were donated by residents and former visitors as well as informational panels on the hotel, owners and famous guests. Hotel Galvez collaborated with the Galveston County Historical Museum and Museum Arts on this exhibit. While there, you must experience their Spa. It is one-of-a-kind and a truly amazing experience.

Olympia The Grill at Pier 21 Here you will enjoy authentic Greek cuisine rated by critics as some of the best in the area. The restaurant is owned by the Kriticos family and features a dockside patio and a fabulous view of Galveston’s harbor. The restaurant is known for its steamed clams, Texas oysters and whole flounder.

More to See and Do!


efore you hit the beach this summer, you’ll need the perfect beach tote. Here are a few tips to help you find the perfect accessory to those lazy summer beach days.

Lonestar Flight Museum Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark

Pockets vs. No Pockets

Moody Gardens San Luis Resort Pirates! Legends of the Gulf Coast Haunted Mayfield Manor Texas Seaport Museum & 1877 Tall Ship ELISSA Pier 21 Theater LaKing’s Confectionery Post Office Street Art Galleries

Tree Sculptures Tour

Ocean Star Offshore

Make It Last

Drilling Rig & Museum

Invest in a beach tote bag made from a durable material such as canvas, nylon or vinyl fabric to withstand the beach surf and turf. And, many bags are available in materials that are waterproof – even better!

Galveston Railroad Museum The Galveston Tree Sculptures Tour will take you through the island’s East End Historic District where former oak trees destroyed by Hurricane Ike have been transformed into magnificently carved sculptures. The tour is open to the public as a free, self-guided tour and also available via electric shuttle bus by Galveston Island Tours for $15 for adults and $10 for those 10 years and younger. The art is amazing and worth the guided tour.

Many beach totes are essentially huge cloth buckets with handles, and those are great for carrying bulky items with you such as towels and mats. However, smaller items like wallets, lip balms, sunscreen, books and cameras can get lost inside cavernous bags. If you have smaller items – and need them readily accessible – select a tote with smaller inside and outside pockets where you can keep track of your smaller items.

Harbor Tour & Dolphin Watch For more information, visit

Valuable Storage

So, as the gas prices are skyrocketing, and the pain at the pump is more apparent, do what we are doing. Grab an overnight bag, and experience Galveston in a new era!

If you will be bringing valuables to the beach, be sure and select a bag that closes or contains a zipper pouch – out of sight – on the inside. Many totes are open at the top leaving your items both visible and accessible so if you plan on taking your valuables – zip it up!

June / July 2012 l


chick flicks I

By Nick Nicholson

Alex Libby in Bully.


ver 13 million American kids will be bullied this year, making it the most common form of violence experienced by young people in the nation. The new documentary film, Bully, directed by Sundance and Emmy-award winning filmmaker Lee Hirsch, brings human scale to this startling statistic, offering an intimate, unflinching look at how bullying has touched five kids and their families. Bully is a beautifully cinematic, characterdriven documentary. At its heart are those with huge stakes in this issue whose stories each represent a different facet of America’s bullying crisis. Filmed over the course of the 2009/2010 school year, Bully opens a window into the pained and often endangered lives of bullied kids revealing a problem that transcends geographic, racial, ethnic and economic borders. It documents the responses of teachers and administrators to aggressive behaviors that defy “kids will be kids” clichés, and it captures a growing

movement among parents and youths to change how bullying is handled in schools, communities and society as a whole. THE STORIES Alex, 12 – For 12-year-old Alex of Sioux City, Iowa, the slurs, curses and threats begin before he even boards the school bus. A sweetnatured kid just starting middle school and wanting more than anything to fit in, Alex assures his worried parents that the kids who taunt and hit him are only “messing with him.” But bullying has trailed Alex thorough life like a shadow, and as his seventh grade year unfolds, the bullying only escalates. Kelby, 16 – Since 16-year-old Kelby came out as a lesbian, she and her family have been treated as pariahs in their small town of Tuttle, Oklahoma. The one time all-star athlete, Kelby has faced an outpouring of hatred from classmates as well as teachers and has been forced to leave her sports teams by attacks. Refusing her parents’ offers to leave Tuttle, the gutsy teenager is bolstered by her adoring girlfriend and a few staunch friends, resolving to stay in her town and change a few minds. Ja’Meya, 14 – In Yazoo County, Mississippi, 14-year-old Ja’Meya was picked on every morning and afternoon of the hourlong bus ride between home and school. On the morning of September 1st, the quiet, unassuming girl had had enough and brandished a loaded handgun she’d taken from her mother’s closet to scare off her tormentors.

Incarcerated in a juvenile detention facility and charged with multiple felony counts, Ja’Meya fearfully awaits the outcome of her case supported by her loving mother. David and Tina Long – In October 2009, 17-year-old Tyler Long of Murray County, Georgia, hanged himself after years of abuse at the hands of his classmates and indifference from school officials. As his parents, David and Tina Long, mourn the loss of the son, they tried to protect, and demand accountability from the school that failed him so miserably. His death has sparked a war in a community forced to face its bullying demons. Kirk and Laura Smalley – Following the bullying-related suicide of their 11 year-old son, Kirk and Laura Smalley are determined to prevent other children from suffering Ty’s fate. As schools around the country prepare for the start of a new academic year, Kirk launches an anti-bullying organization, Stand for the Silent, coordinating a series of vigils that underscore the high stakes of America’s bullying crisis. Bully comes at you from all angles and with a wide array of emotions. You will be angry, sad, disturbed and down right distressed over this film. I am typically not emotional when it comes to movies but this one left me in tears. Even though Bully does contain inappropriate language and violence, this is a film that needs to be seen – no, must be seen – by every student and parent alike. Bully

Town Hall meeting in Bully.

Starring: Ja’Meya Jackson, Londa Johnson & Alex Libby Director: Lee Hirsch Company: The Weinstein Company Now Showing: In Local Area Theatres MPAA Rating: PG-13 Grade: A+ All photos courtesy of The Weinstein Company.


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AFTER argaret Mitchell American Rebel tells the compelling

story of the author’s life. Through dramatic reenactments and interviews with top Mitchell

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fascinating woman who had

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style I

By Joan Frances

Antique P icker’s Paradise:

Downtown Rosenberg and Richmond


veryone has an activity they enjoy. Some find pleasure in the outdoors or sports, perhaps bird watching or travel. How about shopping?

Yes, it is a favorite past time for many people. Shopping can be for so many things – clothes, furniture, jewelry – all fun and satisfying. What about shopping for antiques? It is a wonderful past time, and if you know where to go, it can be very exciting.

Vogelsang Antique Emporium in Historic Downtown Rosenberg.


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For the antique hunter in the greater Houston area, there is an antique mecca a short drive south in the cities of Rosenberg and Richmond. For Houstonians, it is well worth the trip. The key to successful antiquing is a quality assortment of antiques from collectables to furniture and the convenience of several stores in one area. Rosenberg and Richmond satisfies both needs. Nestled in a two block radius, a picker can basically walk from store to store in Rosenberg. Seven stores are located along 2nd and 3rd Street. One of the largest

malls housed in a building that is over one hundred years old is Vogelsang Antique Emporium on Avenue G. The mall itself has two levels with a theatre on the top floor. BR Vino Wine Bar and Brazos River Provisions Company Jelly factory is to the right of the mall and Ol’ Railroad Café is on the left. The food and the wine are a wonderful combination to the mystique of this rumored haunted mall. Furniture and collectables fill every corner, and the prices are competitive. With so much history, a walk through this building is a must and everything is negotiable. A picker’s dream comes true! Another amazing mall is Red Queen’s Attic on 3rd Street. Two floors of wall to wall antiques, everything from military artifacts to clocks to glassware, organized to make shopping easy. Plan on at least an hour of strolling so nothing is missed. Prices are also affordable and the local resi-

Home and Ranch Antiques in Richmond.

dents who run the mall are very accommodating. A third store to explore is Olde CarThe vintage clothing brings back memoriage Shoppe located on 2nd Street. This ries of the 50’s and 60’s. The second one story mall is packed full of antique Saturday of every month is the Artisan treasures in every booth. The variety Antique Market from 2 to 7 pm located of vintage displays invites the buyer to along the street in the historic downtown move through each section and to study area. Dealers set up tables and buyers everything carefully. Another Time Soda stroll through looking for the best barFountain and Restaurant is on the corner gains, what fun! This market will continue of 3rd Street for shoppers to take a break through July. and enjoy delicious food and soda founKim’s Korner Antique Auctions held at tain ice cream. It feels like stepping back 1646 Blaisdale Rd. off of FM 359 near the into time and experience the happy days railroad tracks boasts the best antique aucof the past. tion in the area. Information is online for But that’s not all. Antiques Around the upcoming auctions and can be found at Corner, Good Things, Once Again tiques & Fine Gifts, and By Faith Resale, a If you have not traveled the short drive door to door walk, are filled with reminissouth, and you love to shop for antiques, cent treasures to thrill the die hard picker. make Rosenberg and Richmond your next Opening in July, Rocking Horse Antiques road trip. The ambiance of these cities is features fine art and incredible antique furworth the drive. Step back in time to when niture from every period. This downtown life was simpler, people talked to one anarea is charming, and the city managers other, and texting was not in the dictionare continuing to entice visitors with the ary. Happy picking! Historic Railroad Museum and the Ebell House, built in 1902, now a visitor information and event center. Coming soon, the historic downtown area will be designated as a Cultural District with Imperial Performing Arts as the lead organization. A short drive north on Highway 90 is the city of Richmond. The historic downtown area on Morton Street features Home & Ranch Antiques. This small store has a wonderful assortment of religious icons, cosOl’ Railroad Café in Historic Downtown Rosenberg. tume jewelry and glassware.

. . h h h S Girls Have I Got


With so much history, a walk through this building is a must and everything is negotiable.

A Deal For You!







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June / July 2012 l



health & wellness I

By Heather Reichert, RD, CDE

This One Body…


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his past month, one of my worst fears was realized. My mom suffered a massive heart attack. Fortunately, she lives in a relatively small town and very close to the hospital. The cardiologist was able to restore blood flow with several stents, though she will still require bypass surgery next month. Those moments sitting in the hospital waiting for visiting hours, I couldn’t help but think of all of the ways that this incident could have been prevented. But, the reality was that it happened and all of the “should-a,” “could-a,” “would-a” talk was not going to change that. So, you start thinking of how you can make the most of the situation. The event has certainly been a lifealtering experience for my mom, and I suspect there will be some major lifestyle changes as a result.  Of course, you can imagine who will be “master sergeant” in the nutrition arena. And it all really got me to start thinking about the fact that we only have this one body. It is probably safe to assume that most people take their health for granted. We always think that we can just start exercising or eating better “tomorrow” or “next week” or the infamous “Monday.” But, oftentimes, those days come and go without anything changing.  Sometimes those days never even come. Through poor dietary habits, inactivity, smoking, alcohol and stress, we torment our bodies (often on a daily basis).  We seem to live as though we have nine lives. That we can just have some type of surgery, take some type of shot, swallow some type of pill, or drink some type of magical concoction and all will be well.  If only that were true. I remember, back in my early days as a clinical dietitian in the hospitals, a doctor asked me why I had his patient’s chart (the patient was a male in his 60s).  I told him that I was going to go in and speak to him about his diet since he had heart disease and diabetes.  His response to me was, “That’s the problem with you dietitians.  You think food is medicine.  Just let him take his medication and enjoy the remainder of his life.”  Those words hit me like a ton of bricks.  Was this the industry that I just

jumped into? Is this the battle that I would be fighting for the rest of my career?  The fact is that food IS medicine.  Dietary changes, in fact, DO impact disease states.  Fortunately, many of the doctors today are aware of the effect of foods on health, both the positive and the negative.  Over the years, I have seen medicinal intervention work alongside lifestyle intervention.  In fact, many individuals have been able to make significant changes to their cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels (just to name a few) with diet and exercise alone.  When we treat our bodies like the high quality and intricate machines that they are, then they will operate as such.  The unfortunate thing is that most people don’t do that.  Most people feed their bodies sub-par foods, doused with a ton of salt, preservatives and fake colors – foods robbed of nutrients by over-processing and refining.  When this is done over and over, the body doesn’t function like a high quality machine anymore.  It’s like putting low grade gasoline into a Maserati!  I’ve seen some people take better care of their cars than they do their own bodies.  Is that you? There comes a point in life when we must realize that we have a responsibility to take care of this one body that we were given.  We have a responsibility, not only to ourselves, but also to those who depend upon us – spouses, children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, etc.  I frequently have patients who will come to me and say, “Ok, I realize I need to eat healthier, but what about my kids?  I don’t want them to suffer because of me.”  Once I rephrase their question and repeat it back to them, they begin to realize how ridiculous it sounds.  We all want better for our kids than what we had.  Instead of more money, better jobs and better opportunities, let’s start with their health.  Don’t put your health and the health of your family on the back-burner.  After all, we only get one body. If you are ready to get your health on the right track, become a part of a challenge group today!  Go to www.heatherreichert. com for more information.


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entertaining I

By Stephenie Cox


Popsicles The Piscorita


ummer is here, and for Houston, it means time to plan those summer nights. Pool parties, back yard BBQ’s, getting together with friends and family to enjoy those last moments of cool breezes before mid-summer’s hot and humid days arrive. I don’t know about you, but I have awesome memories of back yard get togethers with macaroni salad with heavy mayo, grilled burgers with cheese, ice cold beer and cocktails and for dessert, ice cream galore. Today, a little more “waist” conscious fare has made its way to the party. Grilled salmon and a light orzo salad is the choice du jour – a wonderful compliment to all those hard hours on the Pilates mat and cardio sessions – is now my summer menu. I am all about rocking the resort wear and bringing on the swim suits, but what about my ice cream? What about my cocktail? It’s just not a complete summer night without them. Leave it to the fit and fabulous Fergie, six-time Grammy award-winning artist, to partner with Voli Light Vodkas to promote a delicious, low calorie alternative for the fitness minded cocktail consumer who does not want to compromise taste and quality. “A fit and active lifestyle can now happily co-exist with a sexy night on the town with your girlfriends or your man. The Orange Vanilla Fusion tastes just like a creamsicle... mmm. Voli’s innovative and delicious low-calorie vodkas mean I can have my workouts not be ruined by a night out. J ‘adore Voli!” says Fergie. I am seriously all over this idea! Let’s take the idea a bit further to create divine adult popsicles! Yes, I said it! We can have our drinks and ice cream, too! All the fun of a popsicle, all the pizzazz of a cocktail … all wrapped up in a tasty treat your guests will love. Pick your favorite summer flavors. Pick your poison – vodka, tequila or rum – whatever your heart desires. There are so many wonderful combinations to explore. Here are some great ideas from some of Houston’s finest drink spots for adult popsicles.


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l June / July 2012

Latin Bites Beverage Manager Carlos Ramos 5709 Woodway Dr., Houston Here is a popsicle recipe that is perfect for summer. From Pisco Sours to purple corn juice, Peru offers a diverse drink culture. And, at Latin Bites, Texas’ only Pisco bar, Pisco goes into every cocktail they create. Perfect for hot summer days, Latin Bites is putting a twist on the typical margarita with a Piscorita. 1 1/2 oz of pisco 1/2 oz of triple sec 1/2 oz lime juice 1/2 oz simple syrup 1 oz of orange juice Combine all ingredients and freeze overnight. Garnish with salt and a lime.

Frozen Lime Rickey Bistro Bar 800 Sorella Ct., Houston

3 cups freshly squeezed lime juice 2 oz bitters 2 oz simple syrup Combine ingredients in a bowl with a spout. Pour mixture into molds, filling three-fourths of the way. Freeze at least 3 hours or until frozen. Makes 6 servings.

Frozen Tangerine Screwdriver Monnalisa Bar 800 Sorella Ct., Houston

3 cups freshly squeezed orange juice 2 oz tangerine flavored vodka 1/4 orange, diced into small pieces Combine orange juice and vodka in a bowl with a spout. Place one piece of orange chunk in the bottom of each popsicle mold. Pour juice mixture into molds, filling three-fourths of the way. Place lids on molds and freeze at least 3 hours or until frozen. Makes 6 servings.

Voli Slim Berry Pop 1 1/2 oz Voli Lyte 12 blueberries 5 raspberries 4 strawberries 2.5 oz Master of Mixers Sweet & Sour Lite 1 oz water Muddle blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries in a tin. Add in Voli, Sweet and Sour, water and shake. Pour into 2 popsicle containers, and freeze overnight.


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style I

By Beth Newman

Style Tips for Young Ladies


By Today’s Moms


aising girls today is a tough job. It seems as if this generation has much more to deal with than we did while growing up. Because I work with a great number of pre-teen and teen-aged girls, I wanted to take an opportunity to share with you some questions that moms frequently ask when it comes to fashion and grooming choices for their daughters. My intention is to assist moms as they begin diving into all that preteen girl stuff! So, here we go – frequently asked questions by moms.

Q: A:

Summer is fast approaching. What is your opinion on swimsuits?

That is a decision that you, Mom, must make. Personally, I believe two-piece swimsuits are fine for girls, provided they cover what must be covered. With that being said, let me share a little story with you. Several years ago, I was blessed to escort a group of middle school students on a trip to Greece. Knowing we would visit several of the beautiful beaches while there, we instructed the girls to pack accordingly. Before departure, one mom approached me and asked me to keep an eye on her daughter. “We don’t allow her to wear bikinis, but I know most of her friends do, so will you make sure she wears what she’s supposed to wear?” Knowing this family’s background and cultural beliefs, I promised her that I would. When we made our first beach stop, I noticed her daughter wearing a friend’s two-piece. I pulled her aside, and asked what was going on. I got the typical, “But they’re all wearing bikinis, so why can’t I?” routine. I explained that I’d made a promise to her mother, and instructed the girl to change. She did, and then it hit me: her parents never explained why they did not want her wearing a twopiece swimsuit. She didn’t understand that her culture did not approve of it. No matter your decision regarding swimsuits, explain to your daughter why


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l June / July 2012

you feel the way you do. Had this girl known why she was forbidden to wear a two-piece, she would have been less likely to rebel against her parents’ wishes.


When should I allow my daughter to start shaving her legs?


When she needs to shave them! Age should not be a factor here. Unattended body hair can cause a girl to feel self-conscious and uncomfortable. She may experience teasing from her classmates – I’ve seen this happen on more than one occasion. Explain why she’s suddenly growing hair in certain places, and share with her safe tips for getting rid of it. I’ve seen girls rebel on this one, too, and end up with serious cuts due to improper shaving and allergic reactions to hair removal creams. Talk to her about it as soon as it becomes an issue for her, whether it is her legs, eyebrows, or upper lip.

Q: A:

Should my 6th grade daughter wear high heels?

No. Pre-teens have no business wearing high heels. In addition to the message high heels may send, she could also suffer back and foot problems as a result. She’s still growing, after all. By 7th grade, a small heel is acceptable for special occasions. The older she gets, the higher the heel, I believe.

Heard Through the Grapevine

Q: A:

What about nail polish?

Your daughter’s nails should always be clean and trimmed. Long nails are never appropriate, nor is a deep red nail polish. I think the fun neon colors geared toward girls are fine, as long as you approve of it. Keep it nice and neat when it comes to nails – I think that’s a good lesson for all of us, no matter our age! Remember moms, our clothing choices and grooming habits tell the world how we expect to be treated. Our girls need to understand appropriateness and the importance of presenting our best selves to the world. Keep the line of communication open with your daughter and model good habits for her. Take pride in yourself, take care of yourself, and she will follow your example.

Q: A:

When should I allow my daughter to wear make-up?

Q: A:

What about skin care?

Hi Patti, It was so nice to finally meet you in person at Alisa’s birthday party. Leave it to Alisa to make her birthday all about everyone else!  When Focus on Women shows up in my mailbox, I read her column first.  She is funny, thoughtful, insightful and never dull!  FOW has something for women of all ages and stages in life.  It is wonderful to have a magazine that focuses on the strength of good role models for our young women - a magazine that empowers rather than exploits women.  Thank you for gifting our community with a prime example of professional journalism!                        Blessings,                                                   Rosemary Herron

A little powder and lip gloss are fine beginning in 7th grade. The older she gets, the more she may apply. The popular ultra-smoky eye is not appropriate for teens unless it’s a special occasion, such as prom. The trick to makeup – for any age – is to keep it simple.

I’ve shared the importance of taking care of one’s skin with girls as young as eight. It’s never too early to start discussing good skin strategies. Should she develop a skin problem, such as acne, get her on an effective program immediately.

Rosemary Herron with Alisa Murray.

Find us on Facebook and give us your thoughts! For questions and comments, please e-mail: June / July 2012 l




By Alisa Murray

Woman Woman Don’t know what to do anymore? Just ask!


ow many of you if asked can tell me where the salad fork should be placed on the table? What hand should be lying gracefully in your lap during most of your meal? Which foot is the lead foot when doing a basic two step? Better still, what is the appropriate way to thank someone for a baby gift? Are you supposed to bring a hostess gift to every party? I am sure your head is spinning just about now, and you might actually be thinking what my very own daughter said to me, “Who cares?” !#$** What? “How could you not care?” That would be my reply. However, I am quite afraid that as this next generation succumbs to the social media frenzies something will be left missing from their lives. Somehow the idea of throwing a party has become a mere social announcement one hour before hand via Facebook. YIKES!! Shortly, and without much ado, our long social history of what to do and when to do it is passing into, well, the past. This makes me a little weary. My point is exactly this: society used to be chock full of rules, and as time has gone by, they have fallen to the wayside more and more. The “Rules of Aristocracy” from our history, richly steeped in traditions that effected the way of life for all in society, were good for some, and as is in most cases, while not so good for others. Certain people could not eat together, and certain things were just not done. I am not saying there is a need for these things ... no siree. In fact, thank God that’s over. What I am saying is that it is fairly plain to see that we are becoming a society of fast-paced and rather careless participants in social manners. It’s plainly a case of going too far with what is acceptable. Need I explain some more? The simple courtesy of opening a door, taking the time to set a table, and of course, the


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l June / July 2012

art of writing a thank you note are disappearing. These things should be necessities and not options. All of this digging into social graces made me go to my own library quite stocked with books both old and new. The best book of all that I found belonged to my mother. With its tattered, red paper book cover, the title of my find is A Guide to Gracious Living: Amy Vanderbilt’s Complete Book Of Etiquette. It is a treasure trove of “knowledge” from many a year gone by. I was amused to read of such things as “The Single Woman....How to make friends in a big city.” (Chuckle) or “Keeping your Dignity” or best of all, “How to conduct a dinner without a maid!” LOL Oh my! I feel sure there was some eye rolling, and this time, it was from me! Many of you have read the influences of my sweet grandmother. Over the years, my readers have come to know how southern and positively proper Nana was on most subjects. There were certain things I was taught to do, and one requirement was to attend a set of classes to learn the very things I am writing to you now about. I learned how to dance, set a table and the proper forms of address. “Normal life” for me as a 7th grader would be met with a few rolled eyes from Victoria Ann and her friends – which is precisely the urgency I am feeling right about now. I do not want these courtesies to be lost. I feel responsible, as it were, to protect their sanctity, and I hope you do too. So, the next time you have a learning opportunity to share social graces with our youth, please do so. They may not ask you, but you can always ask them. You – and Nana – will be glad you did. Take care of you!

By Dr. Vidhya Subramanian

I well woman

Understanding Thyroid Disorders


he thyroid influences every organ, tissue and cell in the body. By regulating your metabolism — the rate at which the body turns food into energy — the thyroid sets the pace for pivotal functions. Hormones produced and released into the bloodstream by the thyroid determine your body temperature, your appetite and your heart rate. The smoothness of your skin, the strength of your muscles and the thickness of your hair also depend in part on the thyroid. The thyroid lies just under the skin beneath the Adam’s apple. The gland releases two hormones — triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) — into the bloodstream. The more T3 and T4 in the bloodstream, the faster the speed at which chemical reactions occur. The thyroid takes orders from the pituitary gland, which keeps tabs on blood levels of the hormones. When they dip below a certain level, the pituitary gland sends higher amounts of thyroid-stimulating hormones (TSH) to the thyroid, to increase T3 and T4 production. “Problems arise when blood levels of T3 and T4 aren’t adequately maintained. When the thyroid releases too many thyroid hormones — a condition called hyperthyroidism — your metabolism goes into overdrive, burning calories almost as quickly as you consume them,” says Vidhya Subramanian, M.D., board certified endocrinologist on staff at Methodist Sugar Land Hospital. “That means you may be losing weight despite eating more. Your heart may race and you might feel warm all the time. The seri-

ous consequences are irregular heart rhythm, congestive heart failure and bone loss.” Symptoms of hyperthyroidism: • High blood pressure • Shakiness and tremor • Nervousness and increased sweat • Sleep difficulties • Frequent bowel movements and diarrhea • Weakness • Raised, thickened skin over the shins • Swollen, reddened, bulging eyes • Sensitivity of eyes to light • Constant stare • Confusion “Problems also ensue when the thyroid doesn’t make enough T3 and T4, a condition known as hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid,” says Dr. Subramanian. “It may take a long time to notice the symptoms because they can take months or even years to develop.” Symptoms of hypothyroidism: • Slow pulse • Hoarse voice • Slowed speech • Loss of eyebrows • Drooping eyelids • Constipation • Weight gain • Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet • Depression • Confusion • Decreased sexual interest A simple blood test that measures T4 and TSH levels is the best way to diagnose a thyroid disorder. Hyperthyroidism can be treated by taking a daily antithyroid

pill for nine to twelve months. Although symptoms usually disappear after six to eight weeks of treatment with the pills, symptoms may return after the yearlong treatment. If that happens, the treatment may be repeated or liquid radioactive is given to force the thyroid to slow hormone production. In cases when treatment for hyperthyroidism renders the thyroid underactive, treatment for hypothyroidism, which involves taking a daily pill containing synthetic thyroxine, is the next step. This treatment is lifelong and must be closely monitored by a physician. It’s important to recognize and treat thyroid disease to enjoy a normal life. Women should keep a careful eye out for the subtle changes as they are much more likely than men to experience thyroid disorders. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Subramanian or another endocrinologist in your area, call our physician referral line at 281-274-7500 or visit

June / July 2012 l


entertaining I

By Claudia Richter


World of the


bove all, the concept behind Sugar Land Town Square’s new BLU restaurant is to celebrate a love of cuisine with European and Asian origins and create a really fun dining experience. Chef Junnajet Hurapan, or Chef “Jett,” originally from Bangkok, Thailand, brings 30 years of experience in top restaurants in New York City and believes the “sky’s the limit” in producing a menu that knows no boundaries in culinary creativity. Joining him at BLU is his wife and Pastry Chef Jett is a congenial host Chef Jiraporn who makes a fun dining Hurapan. She experience a top priority. also adheres to a made-from-scratch with only the freshest ingredients philosophy. I recently visited BLU to sample some favorite menu items and came away with an appreciation for the fresh and healthy ingredients, unique and flavorful sauces and the satisfaction of feeling that none of the dishes made me feel overly full or stuffed. From the tapas and dumpling offerings, I tried the sweet potato samosa with a chili tamarind sauce. A samosa is a pastry dough filled with a savory ingredient. The samosa is really a tasty little bite, and this one is especially good with the phenomenal dipping sauce. Included in my sample was another samosa with a lamb filling and a crispy Saigon roll with chicken and shrimp and a plum sauce for dipping. There are several other varieties of tapas and dumplings on the menu, but I would order the ones I tried a second time. Living up to the promise of European specialties, you can find calamari, steamed mussels, polenta and black bean soup, in addition


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to gourmet sandwiches such as a falafel sandwich with tzatziki sauce, veggies and a roasted chili sauce served with crispy fries. For my next course, I tried the BLU Asian Salad. I loved the gentle miso flavor that complimented the mix of grilled chicken, frisee and napa cabbage and crispy wontons. You can also order it with crispy calamari. For my center-of-the-plate course, I was presented with a dish so beautifully prepared that I had to admire it for a few minutes before I began to eat. The crispy fish is a gorgeous dish composed of three crispy fillets, with tamarind, chili and basil. It was crispy but light, and the flavors were perfectly balanced and like many of the dishes, had a little kick to them. I noticed that the oven roasted sea bass also sounded good as it is served with red bell pepper, pineapple, shitake mushrooms, scallions, ginger and sake soy. For business or a nice shopper’s lunch, there is a 3-course lunch special served Tuesday through Friday from 11 am to 3 pm for $12 and includes a soup or salad, tapas or dumpling and a third choice that includes Kobe Beef Sliders, Massaman Beef Short Ribs, Tamarind Cashew Chicken or pork, Mexicanstyle Tacos and some additional entrees. There is also a selection of rice and noodles including a wonderful Pad-Thai and Hong Kong Fried

Hand-made truffles are the perfect dessert to share.

Rice. The menu is far too extensive to include here. I had a quartet of four chocolate truffles for my dessert, and they were a great little treat that was just the right size.

The crispy fish is presented in a vastly flavorful tamarind sauce.

The Massaman beef short ribs have spice, potato, peanut and coconut tamarind accompaniments.

If you want to visit BLU for brunch, the menu is amazing. The brioche used in many of the dishes is made in-house and the fluffy omelets, classic Eggs Benedict, quiches and so on include a complimentary cocktail such as a Bloody Mary, Mimosa, “479” Iced Tea or Cucumber Lemonade. BLU has a selection of signature cocktails that can be enjoyed in the wonderful lounge, and you can also enjoy a large selection of beer, wine, cordials and fine liquors. Private parties are always welcome, and BLU can accommodate large groups. Whatever you do, don’t miss out on exploring a whole world of flavors right here in a friendly neighborhood-feel, soon to be favorite hot spot! BLU Restaurant + Lounge 2248 Texas Drive at Sugar Land Town Square Sugar Land, TX 77479 281.903.7324



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fine arts

june 2012


Through June 24: Next To Normal. Winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the 2009 Tony Award for Best Music and Lyrics, this explosive rock musical has taken the country by storm! In what is called “a brave, breathtaking musical” by The New York Times and “Grade A: agonizingly beautiful” by Entertainment Weekly, this daring show celebrates the modern family, shatters the myths of mental illness, and redefines what it means to be “normal” in an ever-changing, unknowable world. Wednesday & Thursday, 7:30 pm Friday & Saturday, 8 pm Sunday, 3 pm Stages Repertory Theatre


June 20: 25th Annual Houston’s Funniest Person Contest Grand Finale. Hear fifteen of Houston’s funniest people as the Houston Comedy Union searches for a victor in their 25th Annual Houston’s Funniest Person at the House of Blues Houston. Leave the kiddos at home – this show is for adults 17 years and up only. 9 pm House of Blues Houston Cross Roads Stage


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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30


June 16, 22 & 23: ExxonMobil Summer Symphony Nights. Join the Houston Symphony as they perform musical masterpieces for audiences of all ages at the Miller Outdoor Theatre. The event is ticketed for covered seats but are free at the Miller Outdoor Theatre box office the day of the performance between the hours of 10:30 am –1 pm. If tickets remain at 1 pm, the box office will re-open one hour before show time to distribute the remaining tickets. As always, guests may enjoy open seating on the hill. 8:30 – 10:30 pm Miller Outdoor Theatre

Courtesy of

fine arts

july 2012


July 20 – August 19: 2012 Summer Harvest Festival. Messina Hof’s Harvest Festival spans 5 weekends and is filled with wine-related activities. Festival activities include grape picking and stomping, vineyard cuisine luncheons, tours and tastings, wine and food pairing parties and special dinners featuring unique menus. After a brief orientation, you will be sent off to the 42-acre estate vineyard to pick the grapes that will be placed into service. While in the field, look for the most interesting and unique cluster to enter the Big Kahuna contest. The person with the best looking grape cluster and talent will be the Kahuna for the day! Once picking is done, enjoy a little grape stomping – complete with your very own souvenir t-shirt, “signed” with your purple feet. When the Messina Hof Ports hit the shelves in your favorite store or wine shop, you get to say that you were a part of something special. 8 am Messina Hof Winery, Bryan, Texas

Participants show off their personalized harvest shirts available with each ticket purchase. Photo courtesy of

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July 10 – July 26: Disney’s The Lion King. Experience the phenomenon of Disney’s The Lion King. Marvel at the breathtaking spectacle of animals brought to life by award-winning director Julie Taymor, whose visual images for this show you’ll remember forever. Thrill to the pulsating rhythms of the African Pridelands and an unforgettable score including Elton John and Tim Rice’s Oscar® winning song Can You Feel The Love Tonight and Circle of Life. Tuesday – Thursday, 7:30 pm Friday, 8 pm Saturday, 2 pm & 8 pm Sunday, 1 pm & 6:30 pm The Hobby Center


July 21: Houston Symphony presents Wizard of Oz: Film with Live Orchestra. Travel down the yellow brick road with the Houston Symphony in The Wizard of Oz. See one of the most beloved films of all time on a giant screen above the orchestra, re-mastered by Warner Bros. The vibrant restored images are accompanied by full symphony orchestra playing Harold Arlen’s brilliant score. 7:30 pm Jones Hall

June / July 2012 l


the last word I

By Tanya Sterling

A Woman and Her Friendships


No matter the nature of your various friendships, accept them and celebrate them for what they are.


focus on women

l June / July 2012

or women, friendships are a constant in our lives. We value our girlfriends and center our social circles and activities around the woman we respect and their families. We are present for the crying sessions and always there for the various life celebrations. We carve out long lunches with the bestie and are as cute as can be for the girlfriend happy hours and “girls’ night out.” Merriam-Webster defines friendship as a “favored companion connected by affection and esteem.” Initially, I wondered why friendships are connected by esteem and then determined that it’s all about how your girlfriend makes you feel. It’s all about how your spouses connect, your kids connect, how your life (successfully) intersects and overall, how that individual enhances and uplifts you and well ... how she makes you feel. As someone who is constantly out and about, I tend to make new friends fairly easy. The struggle then somewhat arises as I attempt to cultivate these new friendships as well as maintain my current, stable friendships. Of course, there are only so many substantive and real friendships busy women, such as ourselves, can have. Then, there are your friends who you maintain via text and email and of course, your infamous Facebook friends. Here are a few statements that I have come to realize may, indeed, be empty statements even if the person uttering them has the best of intentions. h “Let’s get together soon!” h “We gotta get the families together!” h “Let’s connect this week.” h “You must come see my new kitchen soon.” h “You know what? Our families need to go on vacation together. It’ll be a blast!” h “We only see each other at other people’s parties; we must change that.”

I honestly believe that when we exchange these phrases with girlfriends, we sincerely mean what we are saying at that moment in time. However, if there is not a tangible rapport between the two ladies, it ain’t gonna happen. The friendship will not take off unless there is a mutual, concerted effort to spend the time required to establish that amazing friendship that digs deeper than superficial niceties. Now, of course, you must remember that friendships which do not require a lot of time, but are women you see out a lot of the time, are okay. It really is alright to have those “arm candy” kind of acquaintances as long as you recognize that these are not the females you will be calling when your hubby, fiancé or significant other irks you or when that same individual makes you so happy you may as well be floating on the moon. The women, those friends, new and old, who show a genuine interest in your day-today life and actually care about your response when she asks, “How are you?” are the women who will be mentally and physically present during the times of laughter and/or tears. These are the women who want to meet for lunch, just because. These are the women who will show up at the hospital when your aging mom is admitted and asks how they can help out during your child’s birthday party. By the way, I have observed that these resilient friendships can be closer than sisterhood while, on the other hand, there are sisters out there who have amazing friendships. No matter the nature of your various friendships, accept them and celebrate them for what they are. Know that some relationships exist for a season and for a reason relevant only to that particular juncture in your life. Others will always be there, no matter what – they aren’t going anywhere and even your extended family members now recognize them – lol! Take a look at your friendships, and no matter how big or small a role that individual plays in your life, be thankful for her presence. Cheers!

June-July-2012 - Focus on Women Magazine-Fort Bend County, Texas- Inspire, Educate, and Empower!  
June-July-2012 - Focus on Women Magazine-Fort Bend County, Texas- Inspire, Educate, and Empower!  

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