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Contents features MARCH/APRIL 2021

48 BOHO BEAUTY: For our beauty spread, we explored the free spirit and natural vibe of a bohemian look.

57 CUE THE CURLS: From relaxed waves to tightly coiled pin curls, Brittany Gault at Island Day Spa shares the secret to creating different looks.

67 BABY LOVE: Local new moms share their perspectives on cultivating body acceptance after baby.

74 FABULOUS FINDS: Upscale resale store Mixed Nuts has countless gems just waiting to be discovered, and owner Charlene Stahl shares techniques on tapping these treasure troves.

85 THE BEAUTY PROJECT: Local photographer Candace Hires designed her 50 Over 50 project with the goal of celebrating women who have truly come into their own.



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Contributing Writers

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Tamara Gibson

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Golden Isles Magazine is published six times per year by Brunswick News Publishing Company To subscribe online to Golden Isles Magazine, go to goldenislesmagazine.com/subscribe About the Cover: Gina Patrick is pictured in front of a boat named Ms. Bonnie at Mary Ross Waterfront Park in downtown Brunswick. She was photographed by Tamara Gibson.

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Submissions Golden Isles Magazine is in need of talented contributors. Unsolicited queries and submissions of art and stories are welcome. Please include an email address and telephone number. Submit by email to the editor, Lindsey Adkison: ladkison@goldenislesmagazine.com or by mail to 3011 Altama Ave, Brunswick. Only work accompanied by a self-addressed stamped envelope will be returned.

Advertising Information regarding advertising and rates is available by contacting Jenn Agnew at 912-265-8320, ext. 356 or by email at jagnew@thebrunswicknews.com; or Bill Cranford at 912-2658320, ext. 329 or by email at bcranford@thebrunswicknews.com; or.

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All content is copyright of Golden Isles Magazine, a publication of Brunswick News Publishing Company. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without express written permission from the publisher. We have sought to ensure accuracy and completeness of the content herein, but neither Golden Isles Magazine nor the publisher assumes responsibility for any errors, inaccuracies, omissions, or other inconsistencies, including those related to quotations. We reserve the right to refuse advertising. All advertisements appearing herein are accepted and published on the representation that the advertiser is properly authorized to publish the entire contents and subject matter thereof. All ads are paid advertisements and/or gifts given as part of a contractual agreement regarding Brunswick News Publishing Company. Neither Golden Isles Magazine nor the publisher is responsible for any statements, claims, or representations made by contributing writers, columnists, or photographers. Golden Isles Magazine and the publisher are also not responsible for anyone’s reliance on the content included in the publication. All projects described in this publication are for private, noncommercial use only. No right for commercial use or exploitation is given or implied.

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Editor’s Note

Bringing back beauty For a lot of folks, dressing up, styling hair, and wearing fancy makeup has taken a backseat over the past year. But that may not be a bad thing. It offered a bit of a breather, a time to take a step back, and re-evaluate what really matters. Certainly, it reinforced the idea that beauty wasn’t an external concept. Instead, it was truly rooted internally — in a healthy body, mind, and soul. That’s where the heart of beauty lives. And that’s important to remember — always. But as we slowly return to normalcy, I think glamming it up can be a really healthy exercise. Take time to pamper yourself with an extralong skincare regimen. Enjoy a home pedicure. Spend a few extra minutes crafting the perfect smoky eye.

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Why? First of all, self-care is critical. And secondly, it’s a way to return to our former selves, to dress up, and celebrate daily life again. And this issue is certainly here to help you with that. We have our amazing Boho beauty spread, where makeup artist Crystal Miller shares the secrets of creating an earthy vibe. Those looks are combined with fresh fashions from the Gypsy Closet in Brunswick set against the backdrop of Wild Hare Wares in downtown Brunswick. From there, we venture over to Island Day Spa where stylist Brittany Gault breaks down variations of curls to take you from seaside shenanigans to a dramatic date night. We also sat down with some stunning new moms to discuss body image and how to move forward with a healthy viewpoint. We also spent time with our photographer friend, Candace Hires, to hear about her exciting new

project — 50 Over 50 — an initiative that highlights the beauty of women in the 49year and above range. Finally, we headed over to Mixed Nuts for some fabulous fashions among the racks of the high-end resale shop. So sit back and enjoy a little “you time” as we explore various ways to give yourself a taste of glam, whatever that means for you. Here’s to you, beauties —  Lindsey And to one of the most beautiful people I know, inside and out, Mrs. Becky Derrick, there aren’t enough words to thank you for what you’ve done for Golden Isles Magazine over these past seven years. You’ve helped to build this publication into what it is today and we are all incredibly grateful. We wish you the very best of all things in your future endeavors.

Word On The Street The Cover John Hartland Awesome cover shot.

Missy McDonald Morrison That really IS a gorgeous cover! Can’t wait to read it! Janice Moore Applegate Beautiful! Emily Burton Such a gorgeous cover! Laura Parker Wowza let’s bring it on and bring it out! Uh huh! Great job, Lindsey. Elaine Griffin

Your reactions sent to us by emails, posts, & tweets

TIME TO GET SOCIAL facebook.com/goldenislesmag instagram.com/goldenislesmag twitter.com/goldenislesmag

If you prefer to send us your comments by email, contact Editor Lindsey Adkison at ladkison@goldenislesmagazine.com. Anything posted to our social media accounts or emailed directly to the editor will be considered for publication. Comments may be edited

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for clarity or grammar.

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Local dog offers excitement, ‘luck’ for reluctant readers



Ron Binkney sat in the island sunshine surrounded by several small children. On the grass beside him, clad in his crisp green bandana, was Lucky. The faithful golden retriever was eagerly awaiting his time to shine. Binkney, book in hand, explained to the children that the pup was excited to “read” with them. Placing the book on the ground, Lucky was intently focused, as he gave a nod to the pup.

ing squeals of delight from the children surrounding him. Binkney beamed with dog dad pride. Lucky has been “reading” for quite some time and sharing it with children is what he does best.

“Page,” Binkney says to the dog.

It all started when Binkney, a St. Simons Island resident and English teacher at Troy University, was looking for ways to connect with his grandchildren during the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.

Lucky happily flipped to the next with his snout — generat-

“My son and his family live near Boston. So during the MARC H/A P RI L 2021


pandemic, instead of them going to the library, I told him I would read books to the kids online,” Binkney notes with a smile. “We don’t get to see one another that often so it’s a nice way to have time with them.” He also has several grandchildren in Georgia — two of whom live locally, Way, a 5-year-old boy, and his 7-yearold sister, Graeline. To stay connected to all of them, Binkney posted storytime videos to a private YouTube account. Before long, there were more than 270 posts for his beloved grands. While all the kids loved seeing the videos, there was one child in the mix who was less enthusiastic to read on his own. Little Way was what Binkney describes as a “reluctant reader.” But as a teacher, he wasn’t ready to throw in the towel. Instead, he enlisted Lucky’s help to spark the child’s interest. With the guidance of the pooch’s longtime trainer, Scott Hendley, owner of the K-9 Corner on St. Simons, the two started exploring ways to teach Lucky to turn the pages of a book. “That was a new one,” Hendley admits with a chuckle. But Hendley soon devised a plan. They positioned a treat in the back of the book, then, they placed Binkney’s hands so that Lucky could turn the page with his nose



when given the cue — “page.” It took a good deal of practice for both Binkney and Lucky, but Hendley says they were all committed. Once the duo had it down, they were ready to unveil the trick to Binkney’s grandson. “We told Way that Lucky was a silent reader. And you know, it really did work. Way is much more receptive to reading now,” Binkney said. “Of course, he wanted to know ‘How does Lucky do that!?”


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He wasn’t the only one. Whenever Lucky showcases this trick, audiences are spellbound. It was such a hit that Binkney started thinking of ways that Lucky’s “reading” could help other children. One day it came to him — a children’s book. Binkney got to work, typing up the story of Lucky reading with Way and his sister, Grae. Thus, “Reading Is a Trick for Lucky,” was born. Binkney started stocking local spots like Island Dog, Parker’s Gas Station, and Southern Specialities with the book. So far, it’s gotten a rousing reception. “People are really loving it,” Binkney says. “I met a special education teacher who thinks it will be great for her students. And her daughter is a deaf teacher and thinks her students will love it too.” Hendley is equally excited to be a part of the project. “I struggled with reading when I was a kid, so it really makes my heart happy to have been a part of this,” he says.

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A Sea

of Blessings: A Look at Darien’s Blessing of the Fleet WORDS BY LARRY HOBBS PHOTOS BY BOBBY HAVEN




“There is the sea, vast and spacious, teeming with creatures beyond number – living things both large and small.” — Psalm 104:25 The Old-World roots of Darien’s biggest annual shindig are as enduring as a fisherman’s faith in the sea to produce a bountiful harvest. The timeless, grooving musical refrains of The Tams came along a little bit later. But if you savor Georgia’s most delectable saltwater treat, this three-day festival on Darien’s waterfront is a fun and fitting way to say, “God bless our shrimpers!” From the two-day Art in the Park show, to The Tams soulful reminder to be “Young, Be Foolish, and Be Happy” all night Saturday, to the colorful and meaningful procession on the Darien River come

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Sunday, Darien’s Blessing of the Fleet has become a perennial crowd favorite in these parts. The tradition-soaked Blessing of the Fleet in this charming Coastal Georgia fishing village takes place April 16 to 18 this year. It will mark the 51st Blessing of the Fleet in Darien, but it is not the 51st annual. The consecutive years streak ended with the 50th annual Blessing of the Fleet in 2019. Of course, organizers had no choice but to cancel in 2020 as COVID-19’s most austere shelter-inplace and social distancing measures were clamping down on coastal Georgia and the entire state last year. But social distancing is almost the point of taking to the open waters that shrimpers call their workplace, thank God. So while the rest of us were providing content, punching numbers, and hitting send remotely from home, these hearty souls who ply our coastal waters for a living kept busy keeping our Wild Georgia Shrimp in plentiful supply in 2020. By the end of October, 2020, Georgia’s 213 licensed



commercial shrimpers had already harvested some 4.03 million pounds of shrimp, according state Department of Natural Resources figures. In all of 2019, Georgia shrimpers hauled in 4.26 million pounds of shrimp. Not only that, based on the health and size of Georgia’s shrimp population at year’s end, the DNR decided on Dec. 31 to extend last year’s shrimping season into the winter of 2021. So there will be plenty to celebrate and be thankful for when this year’s Blessing of the Fleet takes place in Darien. Not only for the shrimpers who thrive here, the event is a blessing for the town, as well. With a population just shy of 2,000, Darien’s waterfront, restaurants, shops, and motels swell to accommodate more than 20,000 visitors each year over the three days of the event. All total, the Blessing of the Fleet is an $800,000 to $1 million shot in the arm to the local economy, according to the Darien/McIntosh County Chamber of Commerce. Typically, festivities kick off in earnest with some rocking sets by popular regional acts that Friday

night on the riverfront. Then, there is the two-day Art in the Park festival on Saturday and Sunday. There is a landlocked parade through downtown on Saturday. And there are plenty of fun children’s activities throughout. Food vendors provide an array of popular eats, including shrimp, shrimp, and shrimp.


The Tams take the riverfront stage Saturday evening, bringing their multigenerational blend of rhythm and blues and beach music to keep the crowds dancing right up till the night’s fireworks show. On Sunday, comes the actual Blessing of the Fleet. Local clergy stand on the bridge leading into town to bestow blessings on the fleet as it passes below. Brightly decorated shrimp boats parade upriver to receive those blessings for a plentiful harvest and safe travels at sea. The days leading up to the blessing will most certainly see a spike in paint sales, as shrimpers spruce up their vessels in anticipation of the event. Like dressing nice for church, each shrimp boat crew spiffs up their boat by brushing on a fresh coat. They also add multicolored bunting and other decorative touches. There is a prize for the trawler boat voted best of show in the blessing’s procession. The blessing coincides with low tide for reasons both practical and spiritual: one, so the boats do not hit the darn bridge; but, also, it is an observation in humility for those whose vocation places them perpetually at the mercy of the elements. This centuries-old ritual of the fishing fleet and the sea is as timeless as European and Mediterranean maritime traditions. It first reached local shores with Portuguese immigrants who settled in Brunswick beginning after World War I. A more low-key affair in recent years, Brunswick’s fleet blessing still begins on Mother’s Day with the procession of Our Lady of Fátima, a Brazilian wood statue that immigrants brought with them long ago from Portugal.

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And soon after the fleets are blessed and the shrimping season opens anew, the seas will call to them again. Why? “There ain’t nothing like a day on the water,” longtime Darien shrimp boat captain James Thomas once told The Brunswick News.



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Stepping in to help:


Emergency grant keeps nonprofits afloat in a pandemic

Sabra Slade stood amidst the morning bustle at Sparrow’s Nest Food Pantry in Brunswick. As manager of the FaithWorks charity, Slade helps guide volunteers as they stock the shelves while also meeting with those seeking assistance. And the latter duty has certainly grown in recent months. Since the coronavirus pandemic took hold, more families found themselves in need of aid. “The pantry has seen an uptick. We’ve seen a lot of new faces,” she says. While Sparrow’s Nest distributes food, it is also able to help provide funding for utility bills, an issue that Slade and the staff have seen grow exponentially. “We used to get two or three requests a day before, now it’s more like five to ten,” Slade says. The staff and volunteers can also help point families to additional resources that offer other assistance with furloughs, job loss, and housing. Of course, offering services has been




difficult during these unprecedented times, but Slade notes that two other community organizations stepped in to lend a hand. “Our community is blessed to have the Emergency Needs Fund, a disaster-relief fund established by the Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation and the United Way of Coastal Georgia,” she says. “It really made a huge impact on people who couldn’t make ends meet.” The fund has indeed changed the game for charities and nonprofits, the “helpers” who found that they themselves needed assistance due to the pandemic. According to the Foundation’s Marketing Director Jennifer Fussell, the initiative began as a way to provide relief in the days following Hurricane Irma in 2017, but has pivoted to handle other emergent needs, in this case, a crippling pandemic. The money is generated by the generosity of fundholders, and area residents, as well as private foundations across Georgia and the nation. In turn, the fund has distributed grants to 26 agencies across the three-county region (Glynn, McIntosh, and Camden). They range in services and objectives from food banks, like Sparrow’s Nest and America’s Second Harvest, to those meeting the needs of children, like the Boys and Girls Club, and job loss assistance or return to work programs, among others. Since last March, it has become a lifeline for so many groups experiencing desperate times. To date, the Foundation and the United Way have disbursed more than $685,000 over six grant cycles, with FaithWorks, Safe Harbor, and Community Action Authority receiving grants most recently. “As the pandemic has stretched into 2021, we have seen the community needs continue to grow especially in the areas of food insecurity, utilities, and rental assistance. We are working

“Our community is blessed to have the Emergency Needs Fund, a disaster-relief fund established by the Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation and the United Way of Coastal Georgia,” sabra slade MARC H/A P RI L 2021


closely with area organizations to assess how we can continue to help them help others,” Fussell says. Paul White, President and CEO of the Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation, feels the money has been an invaluable investment to help meet the needs of area residents. “It’s hard to say if anything else has reached as deeply into the community this past year as the Emergency Needs Fund and we remain poised to help the community address their unmet needs,” White says. “As the situation continues to unfold, our commitment to the residents of Glynn, Camden, and McIntosh is unwavering. We are all in this together.” BigGreenEgg.com © Copyright Big green egg inC.

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United Way of Coastal Georgia representatives agree, adding that from the onset, the partnership has been valuable in finding meaningful solutions to obstacles faced by area communities. “When a large-scale crisis emerges, it is critical that organizations are able to respond quickly to address the immediate needs,” says Janelle Harvey, United Way’s Community Impact Manager. “By supporting relief agencies who serve our community’s most vulnerable, residents have been able to access resources for basic needs such as food, clothing, shelter, prescriptions/healthcare, and transportation.” Justin Callaway, Executive Director of the United Way, has seen firsthand the way the Community Emergency Needs Fund has changed lives in the midst of crisis and disaster. “Due to job loss, many of our neighbors, who have never relied on social services in the past, found themselves in need of assistance with utility bills, rent, or buying groceries,” Callaway says. “Because of the fund, many have not had to choose between keeping the power on or providing meals for their families.”

“Everyday People” Displayed at A moveable feast March 1-April 30th



he past year has been a tough season for most people across the globe. But local Glynn county artist, Nancy Schlossbach (SSI Paints, LLC), saw an opportunity to bring some much-needed light to the darkness and honor those who kept our small part of the world turning during the pandemic. She was touched by the members of our community who made the sacrifice and took risks every day to continue working and volunteering in Glynn County, keeping us and our community strong. To honor them, Nancy painted twenty beautiful portraits of these “everyday heroes”. “As an artist, I want each of my paintings to tell a story and connect with others. The faces of the people in the portraits, tell something about their stories. They are all regular people who worked and/or volunteered throughout the Covid-19 pandemic,” says Mrs. Schlossbach. “Their efforts helped keep all of us and our local economy healthy and strong. In other words, they freely gave back to others, sometimes at the risk of their own health and well-being.”

Words by Caroline Franklin

But this idea didn’t stop here. Nancy felt called to use these paintings as a way to bless a local organization in Glynn County. “These “Everyday People” inspired me to give back to others by using the portraits to raise money. I chose Grace House of Brunswick for the fundraising effort because, like the people whose portraits I painted, it serves the local community by providing services to local women in need, helping them grow healthier and stronger in order to live happier and more productive lives.” Grace House is a Christ-centered sober living home that serves women seeking freedom from drug and alcohol addiction. Their mission is to help women find recovery through a relationship with Jesus. Executive director, Caroline Franklin, is excited to be a part of this creative project. “Grace House is honored to be involved in such a beautiful, creative, and timely display of the support and love found in this special community,” Mrs. Franklin explained. “Without our neighbors and heroes like the people in these portraits, safe places like Grace House would not exist.” This exhibit will be displayed at A Moveable Feast from March 1 to April 30. Please come and admire these paintings, enjoy

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a delicious lunch, and give to worthy cause. 100% of all donations will go directly to serving the eleven women currently enrolled and living at Grace House. Mrs. Franklin states, “All of the women under our care at this time came to us during the pandemic, which unfortunately for many has been a hard time to recovery and connection to find the help they need. Any donations given for this fundraiser will go to support their journey in our program which will equip them to live full and transformed lives free from their addictions.” Mrs. Schlossbach continues to say “the funds raised through the exhibit connect the donors with me, the people in the portraits, the women helped by Grace House, and the community. How can any story be better than that?” And we couldn’t agree more. To learn more about Grace House of Brunswick, please visit their website at www. gracehousebrunswick.org. Donations can be made on their website, through Venmo (@gracehousebrunswick), by check sent to P.O. Box 2121 Brunswick, GA 31521 or at the exhibit at A Moveable Feast.

Grace House is a Christ-centered sober living home that serves women seeking freedom from drug and alcohol addiction.


Pastor, author shares book of blessings Q WORDS BY LINDSEY ADKISON PHOTO BY ELIZA WARNER

Some of Kate Buckley’s earliest memories consist of hideand-seek under pews and church picnics filled with fried chicken and deviled eggs. As a pastor’s daughter, it was to be expected. Buckley’s father is the Rev. Bob Brearley, the former head of St. Simons Island Presbyterian Church. While not initially planning to follow in his footsteps, Buckley always had an abiding faith. It was something that solidified on a youth mission trip to Honduras. But with that deeper connection to the Gospel also came some difficult questions. “I started to grapple with the practical questions of the faith: Why does God allow people to go hungry? Why do bad things happen to good people … and most importantly, how could I follow Jesus in a real way?” she says. These thoughts continued to occupy her mind, even after completing a journalism degree at the University of Georgia. “I still could not escape the restlessness I was feeling. My mind continually wandered to the questions of my Christian upbringing,” she says. She finally decided to pursue out those answers — at seminary school. Buckley completed her program and worked to live out her faith in her life. She embraced being a full-time mom to three little ones, and a few years later, her husband’s job brought them back to her hometown. After her youngest child started school, Buckley took a parttime position in Pastoral Care and Ministry of Visitation at her former church home, St. Simons Presbyterian.  “This position is all of the best parts of ministry. Writing and leading liturgy and prayers … chatting through the hard and the beautiful and the ugly and the sacred parts of life with church members,” Buckley says. “ … what an honor and what a blessing. It is heavy sometimes, but it is holy always.” That, she feels, can also be said for life in general. It was this appreciation for the blessings amidst the brokenness of daily existence, that laid the foundation for Buckley’s book, Bless It. “The book came about on accident. In the middle of the summer of 2020, I read over some ‘blessing cards’ created by DOWNTOWN CHURCH in Columbia, South Carolina, where my friend is the head pastor,” she says.   “They were real life beatitudes, offering words of grace and comfort in stationery sets. Our own church was starting a



Her cousin agreed to continue drawing and the two ladies were off. Buckley hoped that readers would find that, while many questions in life remain unanswered, there is still an overwhelming amount of beauty that can often be found swirling with sorrow.

September series on the Beatitudes from Matthew’s gospel, “Blessings in an Upside Down World.” To prepare for that, Buckley penned verses that reflected on ordinary, slice-of-life moments.   “Beatitudes for the 21st century, so to speak. I phoned my amazingly talented artist cousin, Teresa Lacks. She agreed to do some charcoal and pen sketches for 10 to 15 ‘blessings,’” she says.   Buckley’s poems were paired with the drawings and were then distributed to the congregates. “They were invited to prayerfully write to someone that card made them think of — a nurse, a neighbor, a friend, a relative, a first responder, a teacher,” she explains.  

“They co-exist, like the Christian faith proclaims: Ashes and new life. So yes, I wrote this book only when I decided to write down with honesty and unapologetic facing of life questions, not with answers, but with a lens of grace.”

The project prompted her to start looking for blessings in all moments of life. And, Buckley found many. Over time, they would become the pages that fill her book.

Bless It is available locally at G.J. Ford, The Vine, The Market at Sea Island, Righton Books, Wakeup Coffee, and via Amazon and Lulu online bookstore.

amongst us, s, and generally distracted “For the overwhelmed, anxiou of quick grounding, Kate’s words give a dose take each page as a tonic. that we can possibly most generous perspective planting us firmly in the each moment that our day. We’re reminded hold as we move throughout interaction, a chance ip, an opportunity. Each is a miracle. Each hardsh within and between us. sacred and simple both to connect to what is on the tiny and perceptive spotlight These Blessings shine a gentle nce— have the potential to experie pockets of grace that we all moments of our lives.” in even the most mundane CH, author of —ADR EANN A LIMBA A Buddhist Guide to Feeling Worthy Tea And Cake With Demons:

bless it

“The floodgates of my quarantine-induced creativity — and over-functioning nce as a mother, draws from her rich experie Kate Buckley, who —d bewere opened, the of des for “Blesse ve beatituriver poet to craft a series of evocati er minister, gardener, and de is a gift to ponder, a remind beatitu Each ion. time of great disrupt this world.” broken a in loved blessings came in a torrent,” and of what it means to be valued eters Professor William Marcellus McPhe —WILL IAM P. BROW N, ry lumbia Theological Semina Old Testament,Co ofsays she with a laugh.


803-8 ISBN 978-0-578-76 >


9 780578 768038


bless it

Kat e Buc kle y

“Everywhere I looked, something was broken and off-kilter. But that same something was not devoid we hit pause in a is a mixed bag. But not until “Most of us know that life our lives really how mixed and how fragile iate just apprec we did of beauty or purpose. It was ic, ed times pandem participation in these unsettl our invite poems y’s are. Kate Buckle ingled and unexpectedly interm ly strange are ges gs and challen joins where blessin es andlight struggl our knows this life truth that every who as one complementary. She writes l for her company.” our journey. We are thankfu RLEY, pastor & preacher ERT M. BREA has a—ROB dark and every human, a shadow and every beginning, an end. It was everywhere: Blessings in the brokenness.”  

“The world as we know it is a spinning, spiraling hot mess of huge potential for growth, floating on top of a wave of destruction and devastation. There is hope and there is joy and there is richness in the same soil of sorrow and of suffering,” she says.


Reflections from a Pandem

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Around the Town


march March 5 The Downtown Brunswick Development Authority will host the monthly First Friday block party from 5 to 8 p.m. along Newcastle and surrounding streets in downtown Brunswick. Restaurants will offer entertainment and shops will stay open later. For details, visit discoverbrunswick.com. March 7 The Island Players will host auditions for an upcoming production “Blithe Spirit” by Noel Coward at 7 p.m. March 7, 8, and 9 at the Casino on the St. Simons Island. There are roles for five women and two men. For more information, visit theislandplayers.com. 30


March 13 The Golden Isles Father Daughter Purity Ball will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Jekyll Island Convention Center on Jekyll Island. Girls ages 9 and up are welcome. Tickets are $75 per dad-daughter duo. For more information or to register, visit goldenislespurityball.com. March 14 The Coastal Symphony of Georgia will host a Seaside Serenade at 3 p.m. at the King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort tent, 201 Arnold Road, St. Simons Island. Tickets are $50 person. Masks and social distancing will be required. For more information, visit coastalsymphonyofgeorgia.org. March 27 Crafts Along Newcastle will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the squares along Newcastle Street in downtown Brunswick. Various artists will share their wares. For more information, email upthecreekmolnar@att.net.

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Around the Town april April 2 The Downtown Brunswick Development Authority will host the monthly First Friday block party from 5 to 8 p.m. along Newcastle and surrounding streets in downtown Brunswick. Restaurants will offer entertainment and shops will stay open later. For more information, visit discoverbrunswick.com. April 3 Crafts Along Newcastle will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the squares along Newcastle Street in downtown Brunswick. Various artists will share their wares. For more information, email upthecreekmolnar@att.net. April 10 and 11 Glynn Visual Arts will host Art in the Park from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Postell Park on St. Simons Island. More than 70 talented artists and crafts people from around the region will display an eclectic collection of handmade artwork. For more information, visit glynnvisualarts.org. 32


April 11 The Coastal Symphony of Georgia will host Vibes and Keys: Classical Meets Jazz at 3 p.m. at Mary Ross Waterfront Park in downtown Brunswick. Aaron Lehrain, keyboardist, and Steve Merrill, vibraphone, will perform. Tickets are $50 person. Masks and social distancing will be required. For details, visit coastalsymphonyofgeorgia.org. April 24 Golden Isles Arts and Humanities will host the band Steel Betty at 7:30 p.m. at the Ritz Theatre in downtown Brunswick. The group will offer a mix of bluegrass, folk, blues, Tex-Mex, Old Time music, and classic country. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit goldenislesarts.org. April 27 Cassina Garden Club will hold its 15th Annual Tabby and Tillandsia Garden Walk and Plant Sale from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The outdoor tour will feature nine gardens on St. Simons Island. COVID-19 guidelines will be observed. For more information, visit cassinagardenclub.org.

As a Pre-K through 12th Grade, college-preparatory school, Frederica Academy believes that a focus on now fuels the promise of later. For every age and grade, each student’s needs and strengths are nurtured and challenged through integrated curriculum, experiential learning, and an individualized approach that connects learning today to achievement tomorrow. In Lower School, educational foundations are laid, enriched by foreign language, music, drama, and visual arts. In Middle and Upper School, these fundamentals support students who are eager in their studies, involved in school activities, and engaged in the community and world around them. Our class sizes are small. Our child-centered teachers are gifted. And our students are well-rounded in their experiences and well-prepared for all that lies ahead. THE BENEFITS BEGIN NOW!


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Christ Church

of Homes



ach spring — since 1953 — locals and visitors alike have looked forward to one of the Golden Isles’ signature events — the Christ Church Episcopal Churchwomen’s Tour of Homes. In the decades since, dozens and dozens of families have graciously opened the doors of their picturesque homes, inviting the public to take a peek at some truly exquisite designs. But even more than sharing the love of architecture, the event has raised a staggering amount of money, all of which is re-invested back into the community through various charities and nonprofits. Unfortunately, the 2020 and 2021 tours had to be canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. That doesn’t mean the good work has halted, however. The tour’s committee members remain devoted to the cause. This year, they’ve devised a way to continue the effort, albeit without the annual event. As in 2020, the organizing committee has opted to collect donations online via its website at christchurchtourofhomes.org.

8 2022

the number of charities that benefit from the tour’s proceeds each year




number of countries tour-goers came from (2019)

funds raised for charity by the sale of the church’s cookbook between 2007 and 2019

average number of states (2019) participants yield from

the first tour of homes was held more than six decades ago


The church expects to return to the tour next year. But, in the meantime, enjoy these fun facts about the tour and its enormous impact on the Golden Isles.


number of homes on St. Simons and Sea Island commonly featured on the tour




the amount still raised in 2020, through outreach to patrons, sponsors, volunteers, and church members MARC H/A P RI L 2021


DUE SOUTH apist, asked me to stop by the nursing home where Mrs. Parks was residing temporarily while in therapy. “She is such a big fan of yours. It would make her day.” It did. But it made my month. She was excited to see me so, as I was preparing to leave, I promised to visit her in her sweet, two-story farmhouse with the picket fence and picturesque garden. One day, Tink and I were driving past the house and saw Mrs. Parks working her flowers.

Ships that Sail the Golden Isles



Not long after the Golden Ray cargo ship overturned in the sound between St. Simons and Jekyll, I visited the Golden Isles. Like everyone else, I was in complete wonder of the enormous ship laying on its side with 4,200 cars aboard. Over a year later, I returned to the island as they had begun, finally, to cut the ship apart. I was having breakfast with my sweet friend, Frankie Strother, in the Oak Room of Sea Island’s Lodge, looking over her shoulder as the water glimmered around the ship. It brought to mind two stories. Both dealing with ships in World War II.



Daddy was married, with a child, and would probably have never been called to fight. But Daddy was a patriot, a man grateful for a country that would give him an opportunity to make a better life for himself outside those impoverished mountains. So, he enlisted and, because he volunteered, he was allowed to pick his branch of service. He chose the Navy. He wanted to sail the sea and experience the feeling of being in the midst of an ocean with no land in sight. For well over two years, he served aboard a submarine chaser, one that arrived at the tail end of the Battle of Midway. At one point, due to a raging storm and violent sea, the ship — never, ever, call it a “boat” in front of my daddy — took on so much water that, for two weeks, they were wet, up to their ankles, until they could find land and dry out the vessel. Most of their food ruined so they lived on pineapples, a food Daddy refused to ever eat again. Then, I thought of my dear friend, Mrs. Wanda Parks, who is 96 years old. The story of our friendship began when my niece, Nicole, who is a physical ther-

“Pull in here,” I directed. She looked up from her flowers and grinned with joy when she saw it was us. “Come in,” she urged. What we found was a home typical of our country’s greatest generation: a spotless, cherished house with everything neatly in place and not cluttered with an abundance of unnecessary items (like our house). She did not know that I was coming or would ever keep my word to do so, yet she had a copy of every book I’ve written, stacked neatly on a shelf next to a couple of framed photos. I was touched and humbled. Starting that day, I stopped by to see Mrs. Parks every couple or so months. Her mind is sharp as a tack. She can beat anyone at Scrabble and, though her lower back bothers her a bit, she still lives independently and gets around well. I could write a book on the stories she has told me but here is the one that I was reminded of by the ship. The pretty Wanda had been courted by two Parks brothers but her heart went to Erwin. It was the late 1930s when he went to trade school in Clarksville, Georgia, and learned to weld. When the war started up, a shipyard in Brunswick — the port from where the Golden Ray had set sail — began building cargo ships for the war effort. Erwin gathered his bride and, along with a few other fellas, headed to South Georgia to use his welding skills to help build Liberty ships, the workhorses of the military effort that would carry supplies

Anti-Aging & Aesthetic Medicine

If you can Imagine ... where needed. It was the winter before the war ended and the Navy sent notice that six more ships needed to be built during December. Erwin Parks and the entire slate of shipyard employees stepped forward and promised to deliver seven ships. They worked around the clock, including Christmas Day, and refused any extra pay. I tear up, thinking of heart-strong patriots like my daddy and the Parkses. These were mountain people who had grown up amidst trees, rivers, and streams; who, as children, never dreamed they would see the ocean.

We can Improve ... You will Impress ...

That overturned ship reminded me powerfully of the debt owed to those shipbuilders and sailors. Thank you, Golden Ray.

912-268-2103 imbermedical.com 1620 Frederica Road St. Simons Island

Dr. Laura Slack

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LIVING WELL area — the arms, belly, or even the bra strap. “I love this laser. The research supports an average of four inches in two weeks! And it’s completely pain free … not hot ... not cold,” Dr. Slack says. “You do 20 minutes on one side, then turn over for another 20. That’s it.” • Combination of painless radio frequency and ultrasound with Accent prime removes fat and tightens skin simultaneously in any area on the body … this is something that no other non-invasive contouring modality can offer.

Wedding days should be picture-perfect



“After all these years, I still look at my wedding photos daily. They are on so many walls in our home. It’s an important day and everyone wants to be the best version of themselves and feel their most confident,” Dr. Laura Slack says, smiling as she pulls up amazing before-and-after pictures of recent brides.

Non-surgical lifting for the face is now possible with radio-frequency accent prime treatments.

Dr. Slack is board-certified by ABFM (Family Medicine), ABIM (Geriatrics), and ABPM (American Board of Procedural Medicine) for Aesthetic and Anti-Aging. She speaks as a panelist for Alma Lasers where she educates on liposuction and facial fat transfer. She has completed advanced aesthetics training in London, New York, and Miami. Together with her St. Simon’s native husband, Dr. Slack serves the Golden Isles at Imber Medical at 1620 Frederica Road, St. Simons Island.

One of Imber’s most popular face treatment is the Accent Prime’s Ultrasound for fat removal in the lower face, jowls, and under the chin. Unlike other modalities, this can be accomplished without any incisions, pain, freezing, or swelling.

“We are a procedural clinic for those who are ready to see real results. We are constantly introducing new techniques and devices to remain at the forefront of all cutting-edge aesthetics technology. I love this field, and nothing beats that smile on a happy client’s face, especially our brides,” Dr. Slack says.

Even the staples of aesthetics, like Botox and filler treatments, are taken to a whole new level at Imber. Injectables are used for a Nefertiti lift, brow lift, facial sliming, gummy smile treatments, turning up the corners of a downturned mouth, and even softening of neck (platysmal) bands. Dr. Slack also specializes in lip filler and utilizes an advanced canula technique instead of needles for maximal comfort. Cheeks, chin, and jaw fillers are very popular. Skin resurfacing is dramatic with the use of a CO2 laser, accent prime’s pixelated plasma, or PRP to wipe away fine lines, sun damage, acne scarring, and wrinkles.

“It uses thermal energy to painlessly tighten the skin and feels like a warm stone massage with zero downtime,” says Dr. Slack.

• In-office laser liposuction with “beautifill” is every bride’s dream. “You can take fat from an area you don’t want it and put it in an area you do,” she notes. “People are always shocked to see me chatting with my clients during their lipo on our IG videos. Everyone is wide awake because I use localized numbing. The laser in the lipo wand allows for me to gently remove fat without damaging it so it maintains 90 percent bioavailability for transfer into the face, breast, or buttocks. Even skin tightening is possible with the laser. The recovery, bruising, and downtime is decreased when compared to standard lipo plus you do not have the risk or cost associated with anesthesia.” •One of Dr. Slack’s personal favorites is EMSCULPT. “This is a machine that painlessly and effortlessly contracts your muscles 20,000 times in 30 minutes while you lay down and relax. Brides love the flat stomach and toned abs,” she says. Dr. Slack’s face lights up as she explains how much these treatments have helped people. Imber offers a complementary consultation and $100 off towards any treatment for every bride and free toxin treatments for a bridal Botox or Newtox party with 10 or more guests. “We look forward to helping you get ready for your big day,” she says.

“Brides love to have a contoured jawline. It looks amazing in pictures. It is pain-free, requires no recovery or downtime, and gives dramatic results,” Dr. Slack says. Weight loss and body contouring is another area where Imber brides shine. “We have three tiers of fat loss options to fit every bride,” she says. Those include the following: • Verju is a state-of-the art device used to remove stubborn fat cells from any MARC H/A P RI L 2021


BY DESIGN you, you will be spending a significant amount of time there. Embrace color. Be bold. Create a truly unique, special space. So, how do we design a nursery? We always start with the same question. “Do you have a sentimental item from your childhood we can incorporate into the room?” Often times parents share the love for a particular book or character, memories of a favorite place or time. Sometimes we’re lucky enough to be given keepsakes passed down through the generations. A piece of artwork, pillow, or blanket. From those memories and mementos, our design plans take flight. Great design takes into account both the beauty and function of a space, the blending of the personal and the practical. Practically speaking, every

Creating precious moments in a nursery


beginnings often mean working with clients who are expanding their families. Our creative minds fill with excitement from the promise of precious moments spent in nurseries. Designing a nursery comes with a sense of honor and responsibility. The rooms we are creating will be where so many “firsts” happen — smiling, laughing, crawling, walking.

As days become longer and tempera-

Because of these unique qualities, nurs-

tures rise — we know spring is upon us.

eries are our favorite spaces to create.

Brighter days ahead make us think of

When it comes to these special areas,

new beginnings. This year, more than

we encourage our clients to personalize

others, it’s a feeling we could all use.

and live out their “design daydreams.” Make it a space you love being in



diaper pail. Those staples ground the space. From this base, there are a few other tried and true design components we almost always use in our nursery design plans to bring the room to life.


Here at Residents Understood, new

nursery will need a crib, rocker, and

because, as any new parent will tell

• Changing table. We rarely use a traditional changing table. Instead, we opt for a dresser with a separate changing topper. Our favorites dressers to incorporate are often vintage pieces customized to compliment the overall room style. The dresser will also grow with the child once a changing topper isn’t needed. • Baskets. An absolute must for us! At the end of a long day, the last thing a parent wants to do is spend an hour picking up toys. Throwing toys into a large basket or two makes organization easy. Our favorite baskets are large, hamper-sized with lids to hide the mess. • Side table. Often overlooked but key to nighttime feedings. When you’re on

the 5 a.m. shift a side table really comes in handy for the large cup of coffee you’re

Its time to

going to need. If you can find one with a


small drawer, it’s the ideal place to store items you need like burp cloths, wipes, or pacifiers.

into action

• Book storage. With the exception of adorable baby clothes, books are the most collected and gifted items. We’ve found the best way to store children’s books are wall mounted book ledges. This allows for parents and children to easily see book covers — it also adds a great


Beauty Inside & Out

visual to the walls. Plus, we recommend parents rotate featured books as interests change and grow. • Secondary lighting. A floor or table lamp within easy reach of a rocking chair

Introducing BodyTite & Morpheus8

or glider gives parents the ability to adjust lighting quickly. If baby falls asleep on you, the last thing you want to do is get up to turn off a light switch. Find a lamp with a traditional fabric shade to diffuse and soften light. Whether you’re expanding your family or just looking for a renewal or new beginning in your space, we at Residents Understood look forward to helping bring together beauty and function, personal and practical for your family and all families here in the Golden Isles.

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Our 5thThe Anniversary Exhibition Gift of Art “Spirit of Trees” Through August 15th

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celebrating bluebirds’ beauty WORDS BY LYDIA THOMPSON

and sings its sweet song. These bluebirds are real comeback kids. In the 1960s, people became alarmed. We were losing bluebirds. Would we just let these birds fade away? Bluebird clubs formed and created rows of wooden bluebird boxes. They were monitoring the bluebird boxes during the nesting season to ensure nesting success. And the bluebirds came back. Jekyll Island has a unique bluebird trail. To receive the label of Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Certification for the golf courses, Jekyll residents built and put up red bluebird houses as a marker on each tee. Every year, hardworking volunteers go out to each tee and check the boxes. They record blue-


birds’ successes or failures and send the data to the director of conservation. I am happy to report the bluebirds are doing great! Farmers had started replacing old

The standard bluebird house is five

fence posts with metal ones. It made

and a half inches wide and at least

sense to them. However, bluebirds are

11 inches deep. It must open on one

cavity nesters. Where were these sweet

side so it can be cleaned out between

birds to nest and raise a family?

nesting seasons. The entrance hole is to be an inch and a half wide. The house

Three species of bluebirds nest in the

is to be white or natural wood. These

United States. There are two that live

are placed on poles about six feet off

in the west. There is a Western Bluebird

the ground with a baffle to keep out

that lives from California up to Wash-

snakes. These are standards, but blue-

ington state. It is a bit darker blue. This

birds don’t care. I had a friend who did

blue is a hood over the head spilling

everything according to the standards,

Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah, Zip-A-Dee-Ay,

down its back. It does have a beautiful

but her bluebirds chose a tiny, brightly

My oh my, what a wonderful day,

peachy-rose breast with a lovely white

colored box to nest. They did fine. So,

Plenty of sunshine headed my way

belly. The true bluebird of the west is

when the idea of a trail of red bluebird

Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah, Zip-A-Dee-Ay,

the Mountain Bluebird. This bluebird

houses on Jekyll’s three golf courses

Mr. Bluebird’s on my shoulder.

lacks a peachy breast. It is a uniformly

came up, I thought, “Zip-A-Dee-Doo-

powdered bluebird.

Dah, Zip-A-Dee-Ay, My oh my, what a wonderful day, Plenty of sunshine

When this song was penned in 1946,

headed my way.”

bluebirds were in danger. Insecticides

But in the song, “Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah,”

and housing were the main reasons.

it is our Eastern bluebird. It is sky blue on

The ban on DDT was a big help. But

its head, neck, and back. The throat,

Why? Because we have bluebirds in

for now, let’s stay on bluebirds and

breast, and belly are the peachy-rose.

the Golden Isles.


It sits proudly upright on the powerlines MARC H/A P RI L 2021


GAME CHANGERS ments, here I am, a full-time female sports reporter for The Brunswick News. I’m not like the average sports reporter — I’ve got spunk, sass, and passion. You need those to be a female in this industry. Like one of the most popular phrases of the last year — “it’s essential.” Since arriving in the Golden Isles almost two years ago, this community has embraced me and grown to enjoy my golf and football columns along with local high school coverage. I’ve gained some memories that will be carried with me forever because this is where it all started for me.

Women and sports: They just belong



Spoiler alert: Women are taking over the sports media industry, one milestone at a time. Women in sports are a rare breed, we love makeup, and know what a middle linebacker is — it’s a unique balance, I know. So when I was asked to write this



column about what it meant to be “a woman in sports,” I jumped at the chance — I mean who wouldn’t. My immediate reaction was, “oh, this will be easy, because I love what I do,” then I thought about how important my role is as a female sports reporter, and I had to reflect on what this role means. Not just to me, but to the future females who want to be in this industry.

Granted, I’ve covered sports since I started college in 2013 and haven’t looked back, but The Brunswick News was my first “big girl” job. It’s challenged me in many ways, but it’s rewarded me far more. From Brunswick High’s football coach Sean Pender teaching me about the Xs and Os in the film room to Harris English and other local PGA Tour players taking time to talk with me throughout the last two years, they welcomed and embraced who I am as a writer. I could go on and on, but we’d be here for days. This community has worked through my golf column’s growing pains and listened to me be “a homer” about Georgia football. And without the RSM Classic, I wouldn’t know how incredible golf is. There are so many inspirational athletes and people in this community, and I honestly hit the jackpot.

There have been countless times I’ve been told I wasn’t good enough, didn’t belong, how I, a woman, would never understand football like a man ... and still, I wouldn’t trade being in this industry for anything.

So I go back to the question of what it means to be a female in this world, I think the best way to describe it is, and this may sound cliche, but priceless.

At the same time, I’ve received just as many positive comments and support — especially here in the Golden Isles.

It also means a lot of hard work and sacrifices. It means breaking the mold of old stereotypes and proving yourself every single day.

Through all those good and bad com-

I won’t lie. It’s tough to be a female in this industry. Adversity hits almost every single day, and we have to fight twice as hard to get our voices heard.


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If I’m even more honest, while women are widely accepted in the sports world, there is still a fair share of bigotry out there. This industry isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s for a person who is willing to sacrifice it all for their passion. Who does that remind you of? Athletes. Of course, it does, because that is what athletes do. They make sacrifices to achieve their goals. I’m doing the same, just with a laptop and a camera. It’s why I chose ... well, sports chose me. I love telling people’s stories, and by now, we should all know athletes and coaches have some of the best. Being a female in a male-dominant industry is a privilege because, hopefully, I get to be an inspiration to other women.

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Dave’s food is well-known on St. Simons. In 2000, he opened Halyards. In 2006, he launched an Italian kitchen — Tramici. And most recently, he introduced Latin street fare at La Plancha, celebrating his own Colombian heritage. Along with Halyards Catering and Hook & Knife Charters, Dave’s three restaurants comprise Halyard Restaurant Group — a thriving set of diverse menus for locals and island guests. The breakfast venture began in a year when life has been exceptionally challenging. “Our biscuits were hot and ready to go just as COVID hit,” Dave says. “But even though things didn’t kick off exactly as we had imagined, we’re thrilled to see how it’s caught on. It’s been the right decision. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But a proper southern breakfast at Halyards — it’s special.”




Waking up on St. Simons Island got a lot nicer in 2020, thanks to Chef Dave Snyder and his new Halyards breakfast menu. We’re talkin’ pasture-raised eggs with Freeman’s Mill stone-ground grits. Avocado toast, topped with tomatoes, house-made Boursin, and sprouts. Fluffy pancakes with toasted Georgia pecan butter and 100 percent



maple syrup. Or a hot honey-fried chicken breast biscuit with pimento cheese and bacon. All these and more have debuted at Halyards — one of the island’s best-loved restaurants — and the flavors have islanders falling in love all over again. “We’ve been working for years to make sure residents and tourists all have great eat-out options here with legendary hospitality,” Dave explains. “Adding breakfast to our successful lineup at Halyards, Tramici, and La Plancha just made sense.” All the breakfast faves are served daily — omelets, waffles, home fries, bacon, and toast. But clean, healthy selections are very important at Halyards. Dave includes protein-rich and gluten-free options to balance out the sweets on the menu and makes sure that fresh veggies and nutritious greens are available daily.

Let’s just zoom in for a minute on that one particular menu item: the forkand-knife cathead biscuits. They’re becoming an island favorite: too big to hold, buttery flavor, a great add-on side to any other entrée, and delicious with sausage gravy, jam, or alone. Halyards is serving a proper Georgia breakfast. Farm-to-table is a national initiative, and Dave and his staff have crafted their breakfast menu to be intentionally local. “We’re very proud to source ingredients from a growing list of Georgia farmers and fishermen. Serving the best food means giving our guests items that can be traced straight to their sources. So, we buy from neighborhood artisans every chance we get. Supporting our community and the hard-working growers right around us — this is important for mutual business. And it means a lot in a crazy economy like we’ve had in 2020 to know we’ve got each other’s backs.” The food tastes like it did just come straight off the farm, the ocean, the mill. Savory McIntosh shrimp omelets. O.J. and grapefruit juice — squeezed fresh in-house every morning. Swaggerty’s sausage and a quiche-of-theday. Microgreens, cheeses, herbs, veggies. It’s all from coastal Georgia. Got your people with you? Halyards is the perfect place to reserve a table for a weekend brunch with family

and friends. Kids’ meals are just as tasty as adult entrees. The atmosphere says “home” and “hospitality” — the kind of place where you can grab a newspaper and start the day with a hot cup of Colombian coffee at the bar. Speaking of the bar … “Our bottomless beverages are a Halyards-only special,” Dave says. “Buy yourself an entrée and enjoy a one-price bottomless mimosa, Bellini, or bloody Mary.” So, try Halyards for breakfast soon. The food is delicious, and it’s gen-u-ine Southern hospitality at a place you know and love.

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Excellence in Elder Law Because We Care

What is Elder Law?

Helping clients find ways to pay for long-term care while protecting as many of their assets as possible is often the cornerstone of our Elder Law client representation. We work with each client to help them preserve to the greatest

Preserving government benefits for disabled individuals is often accomplished by the creation of special (or supplemental) needs trusts. These can be first or third party and can be presently formed or contingent on someone’s passing (testamentary). Guardianships and/or Conservatorships (established in probate court), are also commonly needed for disabled individuals and seniors, especially those with no health care directives or powers of attorney in place. Special Needs Trusts and probate court proceedings are important parts of my Elder Law practice. At Law Office of Deborah L. Britt, our services help people anticipate and protect their quality of life and outline where their assets go upon death. What we are really providing to our clients is peace of mind that comes from knowing they have made plans to care for themselves and their loved ones at the right time, by the right people, and in the right way. To begin an Elder Law conversation, we can be reached at 912-268-2655 or debbie@debbiebrittlaw.com. We are open by appointment at our office on St. Simons Island, located at 302 Plantation Chase.

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Elder Law consultations typically begin with conversations regarding incapacity and long-term care concerns. Cognitive decline, memory issues, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other mental concerns are important to address early on. While clients have mental capacity to read, understand, and sign legal documents, wishes and instructions may be expressed that will survive the occurrence of mental decline. Their voices will be heard even after they are unable to communicate. It is so important to appoint agents for health care and financial decisions and to provide clear authority and guidance for those appointed agents. Because unique challenges are faced by seniors, we offer enhanced versions of traditional advanced healthcare directives and powers of attorney. Documents are fully customized to address the anticipated Elder Law needs of each client. For example, a client concerned with future long-term nursing home needs may address these specific concerns in their legal documents to provide direct authority to agents to interact with nursing home representatives, government agencies, and/ or long-term care insurance representatives.

extent possible the money and property for which they have worked their whole lives. By doing so, we can assist them in maintaining the best possible care for themselves and their loved ones. Navigating the complex and constantly changing Federal and State specific Medicaid rules is key. Addressing countable versus non-countable assets and income limits are integral parts of our Medicaid planning process. Irrevocable Trusts (sometimes call Medicaid or Five-year trusts) and Qualified Income Trusts (sometimes called Miller trusts) are common tools. Every situation is unique; therefore, every plan is specific.



he practice of Elder Law is best defined by who we serve rather than what we do. As an Elder Law attorney, I provide experienced and personalized legal counsel and services to seniors and to disabled individuals of all ages. As we age, our needs change and so should our legal counsel. In my Elder Law practice, I help clients plan not only for assets distribution after death, but also for quality of life right now and for the foreseeable future.





Real Mothers Find Ways of Embracing Every Step of the Journey

Like most women, Marianne Stonefield hasn’t always loved her body. Societal judgements and pressures take a toll no matter one’s age or circumstance. But when she discovered she was pregnant, Stonefield resolved that she wouldn’t allow outside opinions to color the most joyous time of her life. “I decided early on that I wasn’t even going to play that game. I have struggled with body image in the past, but prior to getting pregnant with Evie, I was the healthiest I’ve ever been … both physically and mentally,” she says. “I had the mindset that I was not going to focus on how much weight I gained or how my body looked. I was just going to focus on being the healthiest I could for me and for her. So I talked to my doctor to make sure we were healthy — and I didn’t worry about anything else.”




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Stonefield shelved expectations and tucked her scale away. Opting instead to have oneon-one conversations with her OB to make sure she was progressing well. It proved to be an incredibly gratifying and freeing approach for her. “Don’t pay attention to the scale … there are so many ‘weight recommendations’ floating around for women during pregnancy. And yes, to some extent, you should be mindful of that. But that’s something to discuss with your doctor,” she says. “Every woman and every pregnancy is different. What is right for one person may not be right for you. You have to do what’s best for you and your baby.” That’s precisely what she did. She and her partner, Scott Hümmel, enjoyed her pregnancy, focusing on cherishing the time rather than fixating on arbitrary measurements. And six months ago, their healthy and beautiful daughter arrived. As Stonefield’s heart swelled with love, she also doubled down on her dedication to cultivating a positive self image post-partum.



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“There’s so much pressure to ‘bounce back’ after you have a baby. And I just think that’s really atrocious. Women’s bodies are so amazing … we just grew a human being. We continued to support it through labor and breast feeding. It’s really hard work to grow that tiny human,” she says with a laugh. “I don’t care how cute and cuddly they are … it’s a really hard job. It’s the best job ever, but it’s also the hardest.” Of course, motherhood, for all mamas, is incredibly rewarding. And every moment spent with their children is meaningful. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t need time for themselves — in fact, Stonefield says that is one of the most important things to do to keep one’s family healthy. “There’s a lot of talk about ‘self-care’ these days. I definitely agree with it. Whether it’s reading or yoga or going for a walk or just having coffee by yourself, I think it’s really important,” she says. “I think all mothers, really all women, should do something for themselves every day. Even if it’s just for five minutes.”

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Stacy Patrick could not agree more. The local attorney and yoga instructor is mother to Zelda, 2 ½ and Wyatt, who is a little over five months. She knows how important it is to take a moment to breathe, and it was critical during her pregnancy.


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Though, she concedes that outside influences didn’t always support her inner peace. “The only passive messages or pressure I would get during pregnancy was from other women who would say I looked great or comment on how I ‘was all baby and no extra weight gain,’” Patrick says. “Sure, it felt nice to hear these things, but it also made me feel like gaining weight all over or not staying ‘thin,’ during pregnancy, of all things, was frowned upon amongst society as a whole.” Of course, once she had baby Wyatt that pressure seemed to amplify. Many seemingly well-meaning family members, friends, as well as acquaintances and total strangers, were all too willing to offer their opinions on her progress.

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“I had so many people say to me after giving birth ‘nine months on, nine months off,’ or ‘breastfeeding will burn it all off in no time.’” Patrick says. “It is such a lie, and every woman’s body and experience is so different. Whether you’re breastfeeding or not, how your body reacts to pregnancy and postpartum hormones, any mental health or physical issues you may deal with, any physical or developmental issues the baby may deal with and consequently you — there are so many factors to the whole experience and your weight should be the last of your worries during such a precious and unique life experience.”

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Instead, Patrick has chosen to let go of any preconceived notions and embrace the journey. And something her doctor — a mother herself with four sisters — shared really helped to put everything into perspective. “She said they have a saying in their family that ‘you give yourself two years.’ Give yourself two years after birth to not worry about it. You will have your whole life to work out, diet, and exercise. You will never get back those precious first years of your baby’s life, so just enjoy them,” she says. “Soak them all up. Don’t worry about the weight, and just give yourself grace and acceptance those first two years. Then, when the baby turns two get back to the work outs and the diet and you will return to your physical self soon enough. I took that advice to heart and it really allowed me to let go of what I expected, wanted, and subconsciously had put pressure on myself to be — in no small part because of society’s expectations.”


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Allie and Leo



Like Stonefield and Patrick, Allie McDonald has long resolved to let expectations go. Also a yoga teacher and mother of three, she welcomed her most recent blessing on November 14. But since it had been 10 years since her last pregnancy, this time was quite different — and in a good way. “I’m 40 now. I was much more laid back this time around. During my first pregnancy, I worried about every little thing. I didn’t exercise and was always swollen. I gained a lot of weight, too. I was hormonal and much more emotional,” she recalls.

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“With my second pregnancy, I did things differently — I eliminated sugar and exercised regularly. I was also chasing a toddler around, but making those few changes contributed to a much healthier pregnancy. I felt much better all around.” This time, she was more active than in her first or second pregnancies. “It helped that I am a yoga instructor now and taught six days a week until the day I went into labor. I also tried to stay consistent in my own yoga practice and went to classes myself every day that I could. This allowed me to find peace of mind, alleviate worries, and find stillness,” she says. “In this stillness, I really tuned in to how I felt as a pregnant woman and took time to really feel and treasure all of my Leo’s movements and kicks. I used this time to connect with my growing baby.” Taking time to drop into stillness also allowed her to focus on what really mattered. And she feels it’s important for all women to dig deep and find a way to simply live in the moment. “I personally think pregnancy is beautiful in itself. It’s amazing what our bodies are made to do. It’s important to slow down and turn your awareness inward, and appreciate our bodies for doing all that they do,” she says.



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50 50:


Photographer celebrates beauty of mature women



andace Hires has been a professional photographer for years, capturing some of the most precious points in the lives of her clients from behind her lens.

She can frequently be found snapping away at her studio, located off Community Road in Brunswick. There, she’s stocked an enormous collection of gowns, costumes, and props — most of which often outfit newborns, young children, and expectant mothers.

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“When I was in my younger years, I thought 50 was the end of life and of course, now I don’t think that at all.”



But ever the student, Hires is always looking to learn and further develop her craft. And during a photography workshop in 2019, her creativity was sparked in a new way — she would create an initiative titled “50 Over 50,” photographing women who are 49 and older. “I came up with this idea while at the Portrait Masters Convention. We were challenged by one of the speakers to do at least 50 personal projects or shoots per year that were just for us. Projects that not only furthered our skills and challenged us, but projects that were on the personal side,” Hires says. “I wasn’t sure I was up to doing 50 separate projects, but then Sue Bryce came on stage and talked to us about being ‘older’ women in today’s society and how she strives to showcase that women over 50 can be beautiful, can be sexy, can be powerful in their portraits.”

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Hires blended the ideas for 50 Over 50. Participants would be glammed in her studio and photographed, then later they would be gifted with a print of their choice with the option to purchase others. Their selection would also go into a magazine-style book that showcased all of the women in the project. It ticked all of the boxes for Hires and while she is not quite 50 — she’s 47 — she has already started to sense the shift that comes with marking that milestone.  “Today’s woman over 50 is in transition. It really hit home with me. I already am feeling and experiencing a difference in the way I view myself and others around

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me,” Hires says. “My youngest child just turned 18 and graduates this year. I’ve raised my children and am sending them out into the world. Now, what do I do?”


The project, she hoped, would give women a moment to reflect on what they’ve done in life as well as what lies ahead for them. It would also allow them to see and embrace all that they’ve become — their wisdom, their maturity, and their enduring beauty.


Hires put out the call to her friends, neighbors, and clients through her social channels. Kim Strickland, who attended nursing school with Hires, was one of the first to hop onboard.

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“I had just turned 50 and I saw Candace’s post. I thought it would be a great way to highlight being 50. When I was in my younger years, I thought 50 was the end of life and of course, now I don’t think that at all,” Strickland says with a laugh. She set up a time to meet with

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“(It was) something I would never wear out, but thought I would go out on a limb and be photographed in the dress. It was like playing dress up. I hadn’t done that in many years. It made me feel playful and young again.”

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“My daughter was visiting at the time we had scheduled for the photo shoot and I asked for her to be included. We put a ruffle dress on her too and I love the photograph. Who knows when we will have the opportunity to do that again. I will treasure that picture forever.”



Hires and discuss the process and her vision. They pored over outfits while discussing hair and makeup options, all of which would be provided by Hires. That was at the beginning of 2020 and Strickland was excited about the shoot. Then, Covid hit. “We put it on the back burner for a while, but we were finally able to do it. It was just so nice ... you really feel pampered and it was a lot of fun. Rachel (Raines) did my hair and makeup. You have all of these pretty outfits to wear,” Strickland says. “I was even able to bring my dog, Bliss, in for a few at the end. I think they were the best ones. She is a rescue and came to us when we really needed some bliss in our lives, so that’s where the name comes from.”

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For Strickland, it proved to be a way to celebrate herself, her life, and her accomplishments. And that, as a mom and a nurse, is certainly something that doesn’t come easily. “As moms and also as career women, we don’t spend enough time on ourselves. You put others first,” she says. “We’ve been focused on others for so long that it’s hard to focus on yourself. But I walked away from that shoot thinking, ‘maybe I should start spending some more time on myself and making myself feel beautiful.’”

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As a photographer herself, Donna MacPherson has spent more time behind the lens than in front of it. But when she saw Hires’ post, she was intrigued. “I have followed Candace for many years and admire her work. She is very friendly and quite knowledgeable when it comes to working with people. Her experience, eye for lighting, backgrounds, and posing make for beautiful compositions,” she says.  MacPherson put down her own camera and slipped away from her busy business — Golden Isles Olive Oil on St. Simons Island — for a couple of hours to step into a stunning dress by Katharina Hakaj Couture. “(It was) something I would never wear out but thought I would go out on a limb and be photographed in the dress. It was like playing dress up, I hadn’t done that in many years. It made me feel playful and young again,” she says.

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“My daughter was visiting at the time we had scheduled for the photo shoot and I asked for her to be included. We put a ruffle dress on her, too, and I love the photograph. Who knows when we will have the opportunity to do that again. I will treasure that picture forever.” It’s special on multiple levels for MacPherson. Not only is she with her daughter, but at 62, it was also a way for her to start loving all the pieces of herself. “There is no doubt youth is a beautiful thing. Our bodies physically change as we get older. It’s sometimes a harsh reality when I look into the mirror or at a photograph, but it is what it is. It doesn’t change the way I take on the day,” she says. “Along with those wrinkles come years of experience and a collection of stories. Life’s a journey and aging is part of that journey. Mentally, I don’t feel any older, just wiser. As Oprah Winfrey says, ‘by owning who and what you are, you can start to

“Women are beautiful in their 50s. We have come a long way to get here. Be proud of those wrinkles and the lessons learned along the way.”

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step into the fullness of life.’” Chandra Kendall agrees. The local Realtor and animal activist discovered Hires’ work on Instagram and decided that she, too, wanted to be a part of the project. Like Strickland and MacPherson, Kendall, 52, was also looking for a way to embrace and celebrate her age rather than scrutinizing the perceived flaws. “We tend to be hard on ourselves, focusing on the wrinkles and our aging bodies when we should be focused on the positive,” she says. “Women are beautiful in their 50s. We have come a long way to get here. Be proud of those wrinkles and the lessons learned along the way. There is much reflection involved turning 50, looking at the things you have accomplished and realizing how fast time goes by.” That, Kendall adds, is important when it comes to life in general. She urges women to take advantage of the time they have in all areas of their lives.  “My advice to the younger women: Don’t say ‘one day’ I will do this or that. Do it now. Looking back, I see how much time I wasted on things that were not important. You can’t get the time back. Go for it,” she says.  74



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P i e r c e a n d Pa r k e r I n t e r i o r s

Bohemian Beauty



Gina Patrick is just one of those people — she doesn’t need makeup to sparkle. She glows from the inside. One of the reasons seems to be her commitment to a wellness regime that includes Zumba, yoga, and meditation. She’s most at home when she’s sweating it out on the dance floor or on her mat. And it’s gone a long way in shaping her general sense of self and positive mindset. “I’ve always joked saying that I feel more attractive in my Zumba class than when any man has ever complimented me. There is something about the energy of a room filled with women (and some men) from all walks of life moving and grooving together,” she says with a grin.

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“Not to mention the support from my instructors and the other people in class is simply amazing. Dance is such a therapeutic and spiritual thing for me and something that I’ve done my entire life. Getting lost in the music is a truly beautiful experience. Not to mention the endorphin rush is an added bonus.” While she doesn’t need base or blush to be fabulous, Patrick’s free-spirited nature made her the perfect model for some brilliant bohemian looks. She was a key member of a dream team that came together for this particular spread. The others included Crystal Miller on makeup; The Gypsy Closet, which provided the chic clothing; Merci Bouquet Flower Truck for fabulous florals; and Wild Hare Wares in downtown Brunswick who offered their hip interiors for prepping and shooting.

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From help with daily living activities to sharing memories and conversation this is FirstLight® Home Care. We are proud to advocate for the family caregiver by offering empathy, advice and support for those who provide countless hours of care to their loved ones. At FirstLight we want to provide a helping hand, relieve some of the stress that comes with caregiving and give you back a few hours in your busy day. We safely care for seniors, adults with disabilities, those recovering from injury, illness or surgery, veterans and any adult who needs a little extra help.

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The result was pure magic. Let’s start with the setting — Wild Hare Wares. With its rich, earthy hues plus patterns that pop, it was a space professional interior designer, Tina Dyer, created to share her vision. Dyer, who has worked in interior design for more than 20 years, opened the storefront to have a place to showcase some of her ideas, while also promoting artists and creators. “All of our photographs and artwork are from local artists. We have pottery by Debbie Craig, Mike Brinson photography, Mandy Thompson paintings, and others. Gracefull Goods also let us exclusively carry their home line,” Dyer says. In addition to providing a spotlight for artisans, she also enjoys reaching out to the community to share the availability of design services. It’s open to the public Tuesday to Saturday and by appointment Monday to Wednesday. “A lot of people don’t think that they can afford a designer, but they really can. We work with everyone and can do projects of any size,” Dyer says. Like Dyer, Crystal Miller also brings color and textures

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together to create masterpieces — makeup masterpieces, that is. Miller has been professionally working in the field for nearly two decades, getting her start at Victoria’s Secret. “When they first launched their beauty line, my region manager sent me for training and put me in charge of the beauty/makeup station,” she says, rolling out her brushes. “From there, I worked for Lancôme as their counter manager. I got into freelance work about 10 years ago when my close friend and hair stylist asked me to join her for weddings. I’ve not looked back.” Today, Miller is primarily booked for weddings though she also still does looks for prom or homecoming, pageants, senior portraits, and dance recitals. But on this particular Sunday, Miller was all in on the boho look. Creating that at home, she says, is about embracing ease and flow. “The ‘boho’ look is all about keeping it natural and earthy. Think of colors you see in nature and build on that — think golds, greens, browns,” Miller says. “Keep it blown out, nothing harsh. You want that effortless look with glowing skin.”

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That’s precisely what she did for Patrick’s looks. The first was a breezy dress paired with boots and a floral crown. She selected natural tones while adding a bronzer, blush and highlighter to bring even more shine.

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“I made sure to play up the colors in her eyes and gave it a blown out effect. I added a pop of color with a dark green shadow for liner. For the lips, I wanted to keep the neutral tone but have them really juiced up with gloss,” she says. Patrick’s second look — bold bell bottom jeans, a longsleeved bodysuit, hat, and gold jewelry — featured the same makeup. But, Miller notes, it could always be vamped-up with a more dramatic lipstick, as long as it’s not overpowering. As Miller stresses, the natural shades and hues define the boho look and the same is true when selecting the clothing, says Whiney Bluestein, who co-owns the Gypsy Closet in Brunswick with Alyson Kowalchuk-Rahn. “This look is so fabulous because there is never a wrong way to do it,” Bluestein says. “Pop on some flares and a bodysuit, paired with bold statement jewelry, and you’re set.” But this style can also be revved-up for a date night.

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Something for every one for every day

Miller notes that darkening the makeup, while sticking to natural colors, is a great way to do it. For example, for Patrick’s third style, she donned skinny jeans with a billowy body suit, gold jewelry, and a hat for a casual-yet-striking glam. Her final outfit combined bold patterns and textures in slacks with a snake print blazer over a black bodysuit. For the makeup, Miller added a smoky eye and some shimmer. “I kept the same thing for the skin but really smoked out the eyes. I deepened her crease to really give depth and added a shimmery green as well as a shimmery bronze to the lid,” she says. “For a dramatic effect, I added false lashes and went with a matte lip.” While it’s fairly simple to do, Miller does have a couple of tips for bringing this look to life on your own. “A great tip with any eyeshadow look is to blend any harsh lines. You should not be able to see a definite line where the colors change, rather they should be fluid,” she says. “Also if you ever feel your skin looks too powdery or ‘cakey,’ spray a hydrating setting spray to marry the look together.” 1510 Newcastle Street | Historic Downtown Brunswick For Patrick, it was a major departure from her daily makeup free face but one she definitely embraced.

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“Seek laughter daily and take pride in the things that you like to do. There really is no need or space for self doubt or judgement …”



“I’ve never worn fake eyelashes,” she says with a laugh. “I just can’t believe it. I keep texting my sister pictures.” Regardless of whether one prefers a full face of glam or an au naturel approach — Patrick feels that there’s one element no beauty seekers should leave home without — joy. “Seek laughter daily and take pride in the things that you like to do. There really is no need or space for self doubt or judgement. Feel what your body needs and provide for it. Need a healthy meal? Make one! Need a burger and fries? I hope you fully enjoy it,” she says with a smile. “We have to stop being so hard on ourselves. Take time for yourself and take inventory of where you are at. Rest when you need to rest, dance when you need to dance, breathe deeply when things get tough. Trust yourself and trust the process.”

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Curls the



Brittany Gault stood behind her salon chair, combing her fingers through Brittney Kidd’s blond locks. Beside her station at Island Day Spa, Gault had assembled an arsenal of tools — brushes and combs, curling irons and new-age crimpers — all for one goal, creating some killer curls. “You know, before they had curling irons, they would use actual irons and put them in the fire,” Gault says, raising her eyebrows. “Imagine how badly those burns hurt.” Thankfully, beauty techniques have come a long way since those days.

And a slew of innovative gadgets have allowed for a cascade of curls for all occasions. “You have your beach waves, which are still very much in right now. Then, you have pin curls which is an old Hollywood style,” Gault says. “And of course, you have the new version of the crimp from the 80s and 90s, but it’s a looser wave now.” Kidd agreed to let Gault create the various styles with her hair, showcasing the versatility of the beloved curl.

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Beach Wave A style that’s always welcome in the Golden Isles, the wave works for just about any length of hair, from bobs to long, layered locks. To begin, Gault grabs her go-to Moroccan Oil Heat Protector and a one-inch curling iron (Gault likes the Bablestic brand), set to 450 degrees. “You want to start with clean hair. Use shampoo and conditioner that are sulfate-free and your curls will last longer,” she offers. Step One: Part the hair in your preferred way. Clip hair into three or four sections. Beginning at the front, take a two-inch piece of hair. Step Two: Clamp the section about an inch from the scalp and roll away from the face. Stop about two inches from the end. Hold for five seconds and release.

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Step Three: To create versatility, move the curls in alternating directions. Do the same throughout the hair. Step Four: Allow the curls to set and cool for a minute or two. Tousle the curls with your fingers and finish with a texturizing product.

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MARC H/A P RI L 2021




Pin Curl


This technique is one that Rita Hayworth or Marilyn Monroe would recognize. For this glammed-up do, you’ll need a three-inch curling iron, clips to section hair, bobby pins, and hairspray. You might also need to pack a little patience, because this one takes a tad more effort. But Gault says it can be easily tackled with a little bit of practice. Step One: Clip hair into sections, drawing the front two sides away so that the back is accessible. Holding the iron horizontally, curl a two-inch piece of hair, moving the iron all the way to the bottom of the strand and curling upward. Hold for five seconds and remove the iron. Wrap the hair around two fingers, keeping it in a loop. Pin the curl to the head from both sides.

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Step Two: Continue with that method, moving around the back of the head and then to the sides. The result is a bit of a bubble-head look — but don’t sweat it, it’s temporary. Step Three: Once the entire head is filled with pinned loops, allow the curls to set. It should take about five minutes or longer. In fact, Gault suggests doing your makeup while waiting for the curls to take shape and cool completely. Step Four: Gently starting with the first pinned curls, begin removing the pins from the hair. This will create bouncy ringlets all around the head. Step Five: Use the fingers to loosen up the curls and spray with a strong hairspray — Gault favors the Big Sexy product line for this.

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912.638.9946 When children of the 80s hear the word “crimp,” it often conjures up memories of burnt, frazzled tresses that never quite returned to their pre-crimp state. Never fear though, the latest tools offer a twist on the old idea, producing a much softer — less crispy — modern style. Gault says the Beach Waver tool offers a fool-proof way to create this look. The contraption features three metal irons encased in plastic, which is reminiscent of the traditional “crimper.” “This is really great to do if you have second-day curls. You’ll already have some texture there and you can just run the Waver through the hair to give it a different look,” Gault says. “It looks very natural, but also polished.”

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Step One: Heat the Beach Waver to about 350 degrees. Part the hair as preferred — middle or side.


Modern Crimp

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Step Two: Holding the Waver horizontally, take twoinch sections from around the front of the face. Clamp the hair closest to the scalp and hold for five seconds. Move midway down the strand and clamp for five seconds. It should produce three distinct waves along each section. Step Three: Continue with this movement until the entire head is completely crinkled. The more hair used, the larger the wave. For smaller waves, stick to smaller sections. Step Four: When finished, allow to cool, then use a texture spray or oil to smooth.



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A NEW EXHIBIT AT MOSAIC, JEKYLL ISLAND MUSEUM Celebrate Black History Month on Jekyll Island. Discover the African American community’s role in the development of the Jekyll Island Club with a new exhibit and tour. Learn about the life and lineage of Charlie Hill and his family’s contribution to Jekyll Island. jekyllisland.com/mosaic






Charlene Stahl was sharing a cab in Italy when she struck up a conversation with the young woman who sat alongside her. Asked what she does for a living, Stahl explained that she owns and runs a consignment store called Mixed Nuts on St. Simons Island, off the coast of Georgia.

The young woman’s delight was evident, as she, like many, understood the numerous benefits of consignment shopping. “I happen to be sharing a cab in Rome with a college-aged girl, and she asked me what I did. And I said, ‘Well I have a ladies consignment shop,” Stahl remembers. “She’s like, ‘Oh my gosh, me and my friends love consignment. It’s so cost- effective, and it’s good for the planet because it recycles.’ I’m finding a lot of the younger people are really on board with the concept.” Mixed Nuts Boutique & Consignment, located at 3415 Frederica Road, will celebrate the store’s seventh anniversary on the island in April.

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We specialize in Men’s and Women’s apparel. We carry popular clothing brands such as Southern Tide, Fish Hippie, Old Row, Kings Creek, Onward Reserve, Marsh Wear, and Aftco. We also have a full Women’s Boutique section carrying the most trending apparel, shoes and jewelry. Quay Australia and Costa Del Mar sunglasses, Brumate can koozies, Toad Fish lifestyle items, formal wear, tuxedos and suits.

Stahl opened Mixed Nuts soon after she and her husband moved to the island. She drew on prior experience owning a furniture store in Augusta, but consignment was a new adventure.

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The store provides a boutique shopping experience and features some of the best in women’s fashions, accessories, shoes, and jewelry. Shoppers can find high-end brand names like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Burberry, Salvatore Ferragamo, David Yurman, John Hardy, Gucci, and more. “You just have to stand behind what you sell, so we do. We take everything from Gucci to Gap,” Stahl says. “We absolutely guarantee authenticity.” Stahl opened Mixed Nuts hoping that the worst outcome would be losing the cost of a year’s rent and renovations. Instead, she soon saw success. “It has been very well-received, and we try to do a really good job for our consigners,” Stahl says. “We do pick up some new things at market because we have consigners that like to just pick up some new stuff.” To increase one’s chance of discovering that perfect piece, Stahl encourages shoppers to visit the store often because inventory changes frequently. “We put in about 700-800 items a week,” she says. “So you have to come often, that’s for sure.”



And the quality of items in the store, she says, is impressive. “I don’t think people should be put off by the fact that it is consignment … because the quality of clothes is not like it used to be,” she says. “We have a lot of great quality items, and it’s such a cost-saving factor to shop consignment.” Before she opened her own store, Stahl says she did not have a lot of experience with that kind of shopping. Prior to opening, she made sure to do her research. “I traveled to consignment stores from Charlotte all the way down to Miami and all the way up the other side of Florida,” she says. “… I tried to get a vision for the way to do the store.” Her goal was to create a shopping experience similar to one in an upscale boutique.



“That’s why I have the coffered ceiling and the chandelier,” Stahl says. “We’ve tried to make it a good shopping experience, and we have the friendliest staff … people tell us all the time it’s the most fun place to shop on the island. There’s no pretentiousness here.” The store serves customers of all ages and guarantees quality assurance through careful checks of each item brought in. Staff search for imperfections like stains, broken zippers, or lost buttons, and do not sell defective items. Most items for sale are fairly new, except for some of the fabulous finds that are especially classic. “We try to stay three years or more, unless it’s something that’s really classic like Valentino or Chanel,” Stahl says. “We’ve got a Chanel suit in here somewhere that would probably be $5,000 or more, but it’s $995 in here because we can’t demand those kind of prices.” Stahl says a rule of thumb when setting prices is to price an item at one-third of its original retail cost.


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“If somebody brings us something brand new with tags, we’ll try to up it a little bit to try to get closer to 50 percent,” she says. “But everything drops in price every 20 days.” If an item isn’t sold after 60 days, Mixed Nuts adds it to a donation for Safe Harbor Children’s Center, which runs a thrift shop where donated clothes are sold and proceeds go to the nonprofit. “They have a great little thrift shop, and they come every Tuesday and pick up the stuff,” Stahl says. Many of the pieces in Stahl’s store carry their own unique story, and she has heard some intriguing and inspiring tales. Once, a woman brought in a group of young girls who could not afford dresses for prom that year. “She outfitted all of them,” Stahl says.

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She’s also met an array of interesting people who come through her store, both as shoppers and sellers.

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“We did have one consigner who consigned an evening gown. Her husband was an ambassador, and she worked at the White House,” Stahl recalls.

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Later, a Sea Island homeowner from Houston, Texas, bought the dress, which Stahl gauged was a 25-yearold classic piece of attire.

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“She always shops here when she’s here at her house on Sea Island, and she bought it for a ball in Houston,” Stahl says. The store’s staff will pick items up from sellers’ homes and accept pieces Monday through Thursday. No appointment is needed, and items are accepted seasonally.

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“We have things all the way from the $3 rack to $2,500 Chanels,” Stahl says. “Like I said, Gap to Gucci.”

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In the Golden Isles, Rhonda Hambright truly needs no introduction. The songstress has been a pillar of the choral community for decades, inspiring countless students and spearheading dozens of musical projects — including the annual performance of Handel’s “Messiah” each December. But Hambright’s path to becoming a local star and singing sensation began when she was just a shy little girl, growing up in Atlanta. “I had studied piano since the age of five, but was too shy to sing. During a youth choir rehearsal at Tucker Methodist, I kept singing a high G when the group stopped and everyone turned around with wide eyes and said, ‘wow.’” The director invited her to learn a solo to further develop her talent. Her parents, too, wanted to nurture her gift. At first, Hambright studied with a soprano in the choir and was coached by the director. “I was scared to sing in front of anyone, but they helped me to overcome most of my fear. It’s so important to be a teacher in church music. Where else are we going to get our organists, choir members, and directors?,” she says.  She continued to hone her craft throughout high school. And, as she prepared for college, Hambright hoped that her vocal and piano skills might help financially support her journey.  She started taking formal classes and studied with a professor from Mercer University to prepare for auditions. The extra effort paid off and she was awarded a dual scholarship — voice and piano — as she applied in both areas. It was in college that Hambright laid the foundation for her vocal career.  “I was accepted at Wesleyan College in Macon, where I studied voice with Carol ‘Casey’ Thurman and Norman


McLean,” she says. “I keep in touch with my teacher, Casey. Her teacher was Florence Kopleff, Robert Shaw’s beloved contralto.” Hambright lived and worked in Macon after graduation, and later started reaching out to Golden Isles churches in search of a position. And once word got around, she was in high demand. “People from the Island Players reached out and asked me to audition. From there, I worked with the symphony conductor at the time, Roger Born, and joined the Messiah Chorus under the direction of Barbara Meadows. I was also recruited for the Christmas Chorus at Brunswick Junior College — now College of Coastal Georgia — with Donna Nilsson as the director,” she says.  “The Baroque Ensemble (New Renaissance), an early music group was formed. The community of musicians blossomed in the early 80s in this area and were looking for playing opportunities and work, so many groups were formed out of that necessity. I feel really grateful to this community for giving me the opportunity to sing at many events and concerts.” But one of Hambright’s greatest passions has always been teaching. She crafted a thriving hub for music education, with as many as 45 private voice students visiting her home each week. That, of course, was dialed down when she signed on as the director of music at St. Simons Presbyterian Church in 2008. “I only teach about 10 people a week now, due to my church responsibilities. Some are piano students and some are voice students. I’ve taught some sessions in theory as well,” Hambright says. “This is my 40th year of teaching,

considering I had students while in college for a vocal pedagogy class. I’m so very proud of those that have gone on to earn their master’s degree in voice and are teaching and performing in their communities and on professional tours.” Some of those students have also gotten involved with the Messiah performance that Hambright leads each year. The event, hailed as more of a local institution than simple show, had to be canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic but is set to be revamped for this year’s presentation. As in the past, it will feature singers from at least 25 regional choirs, as well as professional musicians and soloists. But it will be presented by the Mozart Society, the organization that arranged it many years back. “The Mozart Society of Glynn County’s executive board has agreed that the Community Messiah Chorus can be a part of their organization once more and operate under their nonprofit status. This is all currently in process and members of both organizations are being notified,” she says.  It will be a project that Hambright will continue to mold throughout the year. She will also continue to teach and focus on her craft, as well as sharing it with the community.    “I will continue to sing as needed for as long as I can. Music and the promotion of it will always be a huge part of my life,” she says. “I am grateful to those who support me while practicing this art, especially my husband, Harlan, who is also a musician in his own right. Thank you to this community for all of the opportunities that you’ve given me to share the God-given gifts I was born with.” MARC H/AP RI L 2021



Jennifer and Mike Hatcher

KEEP GOLDEN ISLES BEAUTIFUL Keep Golden Isles Beautiful hosted its fourth annual New Year’s Day Beach Sweep on January 1. The event was lead by volunteers Jennifer and Mike Hatcher. The group cleaned up debris left by revelers welcoming the new year.

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Eddie Rogers, left, and Nancy Bradley

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THE ISLAND PLAYERS The Island Players recently opened its 2021 year with An Unnecessary Farce by Paul Slade Smith. The Island Players has promoted the arts through community theatre since 1956. The next production will be Blithe Spirit by Noel Coward. Auditions will be held March 7 to 9.

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Patty Owens, left, and Verna Carlisle

Theresa Brown, left, and Kathy Currier MARC H/AP RI L 2021



Pictured are Vicky Jefferis, from left, Sheila Ledford, Pat Porto, Kathleen Dawson, Peggy Tuten, Hilda Hagarty, Jan Oglesby, Penny Smith, Kay Taylor, Jeanette Pewitt, and Lillie Smith.

THE GFWC BRUNSWICK WOMAN’S CLUB The GFWC Brunswick Woman’s Club recently held a meeting to welcome new members and induct officers. They installed Pat Porto as president; Vicky Jefferis as recording secretary; Kathleen Dawson as treasurer; and Penny Smith as parliamentarian. A number of ladies assumed other posts. The new members included Kay Taylor, Jan Oglesby, and Jeanette Pewitt.

Kay Taylor, from left, Jan Oglesby, and Jeanette Pewitt

Peggy Tuten, left, and Sheila Ledford



Lillie Smith, left, and Vicky Jefferis

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Penny Smith, left, and Hilda Hagarty

Vicky Jefferis, from left, Kathleen Dawson, Patricia Porto, and Penny Smith




Trish Rugaber, left, and Suzanne Clements

FINE ART AND FASHION Several artistic neighbors along Frederica Road on St. Simons Island joined together to host an evening of art and fashion. ArtTrends Gallery, The Stitchery, and Evelyne Talman welcomed visitors during an evening showcasing a variety of creative endeavors, from painting to jewelry to fiber arts.


Joyce Ledingham, left, and Ella Cart

Bo Anderson

Lydia Thompson

Joyce White, left, and Ginny MacDonald


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Profile for Golden Isles Magazine

GIM March/April 2021