September//October 2023 Rochester HOME Magazine

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end power outages in your home with IPSI! -BACK COVERhey, girl! meet the faces behind roc’s women-run businesses new energy works leads the way with their Sustainable Custom Designs - page 9SEPT//OCT 2023 Autumn Bliss fall fashion and makeup tips -plus- the best places to visit this season including the finger lakes! Taking it up a Notch NXT LEVEL COLLECTIVE is on a mission to build a community where women support women!


283 CENTRAL AVENUE | DOWNTOWN ROCHESTER 585.225.4663 | OPEN TUES-FRI 10-5:30 SAT 10-4 WWW.DLHOMEGARDEN.COM INSPIRATION FOR YOUR HOME /DL Home & Garden dlhome_garden UP TO 20% OFF UPHOLSTERY until October 31, 2023

Fall in the Finger Lakes

Discover the Enchanting Wonders of Seneca and Cayuga Lakes pg. 40


on the cover

9 • New Energy Works

Leading the way with their sustainable custom designs features

7 • From the Artists’ Desk

38 • Embrace Your Sisters

A shining light for breast cancer warriors

women-run pg. 14

23 • Taking it up a Notch

NXT Level Collective is on a mission to build a community where women support women

27 • Empowering Women

Kelly McCarthy helps local women build confidence through fashion

36 • Glam It Up This Fall

Tips and tricks for the perfect fall look with Shelby Nairy for the home pg. 49

52 • Our Whimsical World Crafting, exploring, and making memories with Alex Militello and family

Cover Photography: Sarah Christ, Featured Media ™

Featured Media™ will make every effort to see that all advertising copy, which is neatly presented, is correctly printed. We will not be responsible for print quality of any advertising not created by Featured Media™ personnel. We take no responsibility for statements or claims made in any advertisement. We reserve the right to refuse any and/or all advertising.
1290 University Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607 Owner & Executive Chef, Jay Speranza | REAL. ITALIAN. TRADITION. R E A L . I T A L I A N . T R A D I T I O N . Follow us on Instagram @tonyds585 for events and spe cials! 440 ELMRIDGE CENTER DRIVE, ROCHESTER COTOLETTAROC.COM SANGWICHES • PASTAS • PIZZAS • BREWSKIS • SALADS A Little Slice of Nonna’s House! FUN. CASUAL. ITALIAN.

Fall in love with Roc

- from the artists’ desk -

Fall is a time of change in Western New York: from the leaves turning to pulling out the sweaters we’ve tucked away all summer, fall is a period of transition where we need a reset just before the dreaded you-know-what arrives. With Home, join us for everything warm, cozy, and crisp this bountiful season!

With that, it’s time to highlight some of the newest fall trends with makeup and fashion, ways to keep the family entertained, and celebrate women-owned businesses. As autumn takes hold in Rochester, explore all that the foliage has to offer with Alexandra (Alex) Militello as she delves into her local bucket list and a few fun crafts for preschoolers. Kick start your routine (if you haven’t already!) with skincare and fall makeup tips with Shelby Nairy of Glam Co. Beauty. And Kelly McCarthy from cabi is sharing tips to make the most out of your personal fashion.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so we shine a spotlight on Embrace Your Sisters, a Rochester-based organization working to ease the financial burdens of

breast cancer survivors. The NXT Level Collective brings women together to develop a personal and professional community invested in one another’s successes as they “level up!”

Fall in the Finger Lakes also means taking in the breathtaking scenery the region offers, and we’ve prepared a spread of regional wineries and breweries, stunning Seneca Lake views, and events and local attractions to wow you this season! If you’re in the Finger Lakes region, perhaps you’ve also seen the remarkable work of New Energy Works—a company dedicated to fine woodworking and custom-designed timber frame homes.

However you choose to spend your fall—cozied up on the couch with a big blanket and a good book, outdoors exploring the local trails with the crisp air and changing leaves, or revamping your wardrobe as the seasons change—we’re so glad to have you with us here at Home.

585.226.8111 |
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Discover Timeless Elegance in Timber Frame Homes: New Energy Works Leads the Way in Sustainable Custom Designs

Some of the most beautiful timber frame homes in the country are located right here in the Finger Lakes Region. Set against the backdrop of rolling green hills, picturesque lakes, and stunning seasonal foliage, a well-designed timber frame complements the environment in just the right way. Chances are, many of the timber frames that you have seen in our region have been custom designed, crafted, and built by the experts at New Energy Works.

For over thirty years, New Energy Works has been the leading timber frame company in the Finger Lakes Region. Located in nearby Farmington, NY, with additional studio-shops in Portland & McMinnville, Oregon, New Energy Works is an innovative force in the timber framing industry nationwide. With support from their sister company, Pioneer Millworks, who manufacture some of the finest reclaimed & sustainable

wood flooring, siding, and decking in the country, each of their projects focuses on utilizing natural materials and designing extremely high-performing homes and structures.

Founded by Jonathan Orpin in the 1980s, New Energy Works began as an insulation and solar retrofit company, but when an opportunity arose to put up a timber frame home, the business found its specialty. Today New Energy Works is 100% employee-owned and their expertise and service offerings have grown to include in-house architects, interior designers, and general contracting/ construction services, as well as a fine woodworking division known as NEWwoodworks.


Custom Crafted - Sustainably Designed

There is no doubt that New Energy Works is an expert in their field with a long-standing and highly respected reputation, but what makes them so successful is their dedication to each client and each project. With a particular focus on designing high-performing custom homes with sustainable materials, New Energy Works is committed to working closely with clients during every phase of the design + build process.

As Eric Fraser, Chief Operating Officer at New Energy Works, put it, “I think we are at our best when we are forming deep partnerships with people and listening to them in a collaborative environment. That cadence of trust and communication is invaluable to the work we do, and you can see it reflected in our projects.”

One of the most important steps in the design process is the initial site visit. New Energy Works Lead Architect and Design Manager, Kyle Barber, RA, CPHC, says this first visit is one of his favorite phases of a project, because it is when the magic begins. “We really believe that visiting the site in-person with the client is essential. The visit can last two or three hours, sometimes more. We work with the client to begin to understand their vision,” Barber shared. “Creating that foundation of conversation and collaboration allows us to really capture their dreams and turn them into a truly custom home.”

Unlike other design + build companies, New Energy Works does not keep a large library of plans from past projects to reference for future designs. Instead, they base each design

on the client’s wants, needs, and dreams. “Every project is unique,” Fraser said. “We really try to be active listeners and creative problem solvers for our clients so that they are getting exactly what they want – a custom home designed and built just for them.”

While focusing on a client’s vision is the priority for New Energy Works, they are equally dedicated to ensuring the design comes to life in a sustainable manner. Operating on a triple bottom line ethos of People, Planet, and Prosperity, the company’s mission is to use sustainably sourced materials as much as possible in every project they take on.

New Energy Works cares about where they are sourcing the raw materials needed to build a new home. Their goal with every design project is to craft heirloom quality highperforming custom homes for their clients with a low carbon footprint and minimal environmental impact.

In addition to ensuring that New Energy Works incorporates sustainably harvested timber and other materials in their projects, they also use natural sustainable materials for a building’s structure and insulation. “We use materials like wood fiber, ROCKWOOL, and hemp batt insulation for our wall and roof systems, which have fewer chemicals and tend to last longer and perform better than traditional chemicalbased insulation methods,” Barber explained. “This results in homes that are more energy efficient, have a lower carbon footprint, and are more cost-effective to heat and cool throughout their lifecycle.”

Kyle Barber // Justin Jaycox // Bethany Zweigle // Kyle Zinteck New Energy Works Design Team

“If you look at this home from the lake, it almost blends in with the landscape. That is a testament to the home’s custom design and use of natural materials, colors, and finishes. The house feels like it belongs on the lake. It looks like it has always been there even though it is a modern design – it just fits. I am so thankful to the clients for putting their trust in us to deliver them a home that is so special.”

Case Study: The Long-Term Lake Front Project

If you visit New Energy Works’ website, there are dozens of residential and commercial case studies or completed projects to peruse. Each project exemplifies their mastery of the craft, but one case study in particular – the LongTerm Lake Front Project – is a recently completed showcase of their design creativity, construction expertise, and related service offerings here in the Finger Lakes Region.

Located on a narrow, wedge-shaped piece of land along one of the Finger Lakes, the timber frame home’s layout had to follow suit. Narrow in shape and crafted to fit the wedged plot of land, New Energy Works collaborated with the homeowners for a year to perfect the custom design. The second year was spent in construction, utilizing Pioneer Millworks for reclaimed and sustainable flooring, paneling, and siding, and NEWwoodworks for extensive custom doors, cabinets, and countertops.

The result is simply breathtaking. With a mix of both rustic and modern features, this timber frame masterpiece is architecturally elegant yet simple in its aesthetic choices. It invites guests to appreciate the heavy timbers and woodwork while simultaneously letting the lakefront view take center stage.

“The homeowners were on board with utilizing our services as a whole from the beginning. They wanted a New Energy Works house, which meant one-off custom design, timber frame, fine woodworking, Pioneer Millworks flooring & siding, general contracting, and sustainable construction methods,” Barber explained. “The home also features our high-performance enclosure system, which is a wall and roof system that maximizes thermal envelope and airtightness, resulting in a home that requires much less energy to heat and cool than a conventionally built home and will last for generations.”

Rochester | THEHOMEPUBLICATIONS.COM 11 View more projects at:
cont’d >>

Barber and the New Energy Works design team took advantage of the unique shape of the lakefront property to craft a home that draws you through its entryway and down its corridors toward the water by thoughtfully capturing as much daylight and expansive lake views as possible, while simultaneously keeping privacy in mind, thanks in large part to the strategic use of well-placed windows and an offset gable roof.

From materials selections to construction methods, the home’s modern-natural design seamlessly blends traditional craft with modern technology and gives the home an undeniable sense of connection to its surroundings.

Trending Through Time

Having been in the timber framing business for over thirty years, New Energy Works has witnessed waves of change and evolution in timber frame, architectural design, and sustainability trends. While each of their projects is unique and carries its own individual style, people lately trend toward simpler designs, an aesthetic choice New Energy Works is well versed in providing. “The simplest form is always the most beautiful and the most cost-effective,” Fraser said. “Those are the designs that span generations and become timeless.”

Ready to design the home of your dreams? Email us to start a conversation! JOINERY@NEWENERGYWORKS.COM 1180 COMMERCIAL DR, FARMINGTON | 585.924.3860 | NEWENERGYWORKS.COM ON THE COVER
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Kelly Metras salena’s mexican restaurant

Favorite local fall activity?

Hikes with the kids

Name two things you can’t live without. Mexican food and a good book

Who is a woman that inspires you?

Janis Reed

Janis Reed Interiors

What’s your guilty pleasure? Dark Chocolate

Favorite local fall activity?

Walks in our local parks as the trees display their fall colors.

Who is a woman that inspires you?

Ashley Alderson of the Boutique Hub - wife, busy mama of 3, cancer survivor, podcaster and provider of resources, training and community for small business entrepreneurs.

Kelly Bush: she is the most dedicated and driven person I know. Watching her work through tragedy and manage to still take care of everything is so inspiring.

Eileen & Jessie Wrona enchanted rose garden

Name two things you can’t live without. Caffeine (absolutely!) & each other. Being partners in business is a blessing.

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self?

Don’t be afraid of change! Your ability to pivot will be your greatest advantage. Stick to your core values and allow yourself to grow even if it is scary!

Rochester | THEHOMEPUBLICATIONS.COM 15 Come see what’s in store for you! The Piano Works, 349 W Commercial St. #1500, East R ochester 585.737.7672 | IG @janisreedinteriors | Open Tues-Fri 12-5pm, Saturday 10am-2pm DESIGN STUDIO, HOME & GIFT BOUTIQUE Enduring home furnishings, endearing gifts and all the design resources you need to live beautiful ly at home. - Woman-owned business since 1997Our 1st Birthday Celebration at The Piano Works! October 4-7 Follow us on IG for more details! Save the Date COMING IN OCTOBER! THE PANTRY Serving ware, charcuterie boards & tools, dinnerwar e, stemware, cookbooks, gourmet foods and more. OH BABY! Our permanent pop-up shop introducing nursery décor and baby essentials.

michelle maniace vivify hydration

Favorite local fall activity? Decorating for the season. I love the smell of Fall!

Name two things you can’t live without. My daughters & sunshine

Who is a woman that inspires you?

My late cousin Olivia, who passed a year ago from CF. Her strength and desire to live & give to others while she was so ill encourages me to do better.


What does your ideal weekend look like? I enjoy slow mornings on the weekend so ideally I’d grab coffee, check out the farmer’s market or just take some time for myself to relax.

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self?

Don’t underestimate the power of positive thinking and positive self-talk. Stop focusing only on your flaws and stop being too harsh on yourself. Be critical but realistic about your progress, that’s the way to stay motivated and on track with your goal.

ae gifts & clothing

What’s your guilty pleasure? The Below Deck series on Bravo. It’s so cheesy and dramatic but SO FUN!

Name two things you can’t live without. My family and Reese’s peanut butter eggs (I said what I said, they are the best!)

Favorite local fall activity?

Long Acres Farm corn maze, especially at night!

stacy k ercan stacy k floral inc.

What’s your guilty pleasure? A good Netflix binge

Favorite local fall activity? Driving home to the Finger Lakes and stopping at farm stands along the way.

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self?

“What if it all works out?” Use that tool to silence that voice that’s getting in the way of your true potential.

sierra zaremba

kitchens by countryside

Who is a woman that inspires you, and why? Rachel Zoe, who is a leader in her industry and works hard to prop up other female designers. She is also open about the challenges and rewards of being a working mom, which I really admire.

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self? Allow yourself some grace and be open to growth, which requires change. You can learn something from everyone you meet.

sharon m. grasta (russo)

grasta’s beauty & wig studio

What’s your guilty pleasure? Playing Casino games on my computer

Name two things you can’t live without. My husband and the ability to help others.

Who is a woman that inspires you and why? My Mother, she owned Lu Rue’s Beauty Shop. She taught me to care about my customers.



Favorite local fall activity? Country drive looking at foliage!

Name two things you can’t live without. Coffee and my dogs!

What does your ideal weekend look like? Visiting wineries and lunch with friends.

justina kowalski busy bee painting company

Favorite local fall activity? Definitely going to the local spots to fill up on fun and cider!

Who is a woman that inspires you? My Grandmother: she’s been the glue that’s kept it all together. She made a lot of sacrifices over the years for all of us and I know I’m the woman I am today because of how she raised us. Over all she’s an inspiration to me.

wendi loyet crisp rochester

Name two things you can’t live without. My wife & kids, and new experiences.

Favorite local fall activity? Sitting around the fire pit with friends and our flock of hens.

What does your ideal weekend look like around Rochester? Taking care of our guests at CRISP and hearing all of their glowing feedback about our little restaurant.

Proud to be celebrating 5 wonderful years. Thanks to you, our great customers, for shopping local and supporting a woman owned business! A

gift shop

boutique on three floors, awaits you!

Regardless of the time of year, Lala’s is the place to shop. 585.236.1604 38 E. Main St., Webster •
18 THEHOMEPUBLICATIONS.COM | Rochester 1855 Monroe Avenue, Rochester // 585.473.5343 PANACHECONSIGNBOUTIQUE.COM Follow us on IG: @panachevintage3 and @panachehome

through its doors, you’re not just entering a boutique, but a destination that reflects a unique vision. This vision was born in 2010 when the founder, Joan Lincoln, embarked on a mission to craft an unparalleled shopping environment—one that showcased sustainable luxury and vintage women’s clothing and accessories. Come December, Joan will be passing the torch to a great friend, transferring leadership to Natalie from Natalie Rae NY. Joan says, “Sustainable fashion & home furnishing is... Newly CHIC! I’m proud to leave this extraordinary product in the capable hands of Natalie Rae to carry on for the Rochester Community.”

Panache isn’t just a boutique; it’s a champion of sustainable fashion and home furnishings. In an era when climate change beckons for responsible consumerism, Panache stands tall as a beacon of conscious shopping. With the baton passed to Natalie Rae, the legacy lives on, embracing this responsibility with grace and style.

Natalie’s fresh concepts and boundless energy promise to invigorate “The Happy Corner” at Brighton Commons. Her passion lies in repurposing textiles into handbags and home décor. Her vision aligns with Panache’s evolution, introducing items like a new travel bag, bucket bag, and a slimmer version of their popular tote bag, all of which will be exclusively available at Panache Home in December. Visit her online store at: or follow her on IG & FB @NatalieRaeNY.

Natalie shares, “I love interacting with my customers, getting to know them, explaining the process behind my products, and finding the perfect piece for them. These being my favorite parts of the business will translate well at Panache!”

Joan herself couldn’t agree more: “Natalie’s energy and ideas are a true gift.” It’s a beautiful blend of their two worlds, where Joan’s legacy seamlessly merges with Natalie’s aspirations, spelling out a promising path for Panache’s continued success.

Their connection is more than just business. Joan has become a guiding light and friend to Natalie. “Joan’s advice has been priceless,” Natalie admitted, highlighting the special bond that has formed.

Natalie has embraced the chance to take the reins. “Becoming the new owner is a dream come true,” she exclaimed, her excitement palpable. She envisions infusing the store with her personal touch, leading to the decision to rename it “Panache Consignment by Natalie Rae.” Natalie will be at the clothing store every Tuesday and Thursday, meeting new and existing clients and customers and helping them find what they are looking for!

“I’m excited to transfer ownership of Panache Consignment to Natalie Rae. Along with her new concept and energ�, those changes will bring renewed vision to “The Happy Corner” at Brighton Commons.” � JOAN

“Joan has been a great mentor and friend to me over the years! I am very excited to become the new owner and to grow the business, expand the client base, and go digital by giving customers an opportunity to purchase online.” � NATALIE


What’s your guilty pleasure?

Ice cream when it’s soft and a little melted with rainbow sprinkles

Name two things you can’t live without. Coffee and Exercise

Who is a woman that inspires you?

Madeline Dickerson, or, as I call her, Grandma Lee. She lived 93 full healthy years. She led by example, everyone could count on her to take care of things. She was strong, independent, clever, witty, and confident.



country cottage crafts

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Poolside in the tropical sunshine!

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self? Do what you love, and most of all love what you do.

What does your ideal weekend look like?

Meeting new customers who are excited to have discovered our hidden treasure on the country roads of Genesee County.

amie freling re/max plus

Favorite local fall activity?

Apple cider and donuts from Kelly’s Apple Farm

Name two things you can’t live without. A good pillow and a barista latte!

Who is a woman that inspires you and why? My mom, Rita Freling. She is an amazing role model, and does it all with a great big heart!

Meagan Brien

Meagan brien designs

Favorite local fall activity? Wandering the public market with a cup of coffee and a warm Duke’s Donut.

Who is a woman that inspires you, and why? I’m inspired by all people who approach life with gratitude and positivity; it’s infectious.

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self?

Find the thing that is most important to YOU and integrate that into every interaction, every business deal, every project. No matter the result, you know you have stayed true to what matters most.



kitchens by countryside

What’s your guilty pleasure? Starbucks

Who is a woman that inspires you and why?

Shannon Ford (Social Media Influencer). She has built her empire and has because successful with being unapologetically herself. She empowers other women and doesn’t compromise her beliefs to get ahead in business.

panache consignment by natalie rae

Favorite local fall activity?

Riding shotgun in a Black Pickup Truck, music on, windows down and an occasional thirsty stop along the ever-changing Fall foliage throughout the Finger Lakes.

Name two things you can’t live without. My family, of course, but most importantly when any of my 4 grandsons ask if they can sleep over at Nonnie Joanie’s house! That is pure joy! Secondly, the serenity knowing that my most difficult choices in life were made with the best of intentions for all the right reasons... FOR ME!!

lainey schmidt the fleurish co.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Cringey reality TV & snacking like a kid

Favorite local fall activity?

Going to Powers Farm Market with my daughter & my friends. They have amazing gluten free cookies!

What is one tip you would give for women looking to become their best self?

If it’s meant to be, you can’t mess it up. If it’s not meant to be, you can’t make it work.

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On a mission to build a community where women support women, The NXT Level Collective shares tips for succeeding in business and life during the busy fall season.

As summer comes to a close and the crisp autumn air surrounds us, we crave a reset. Taking inventory of our goals and passions seems to come naturally with the change of seasons, especially as kids go back to school and schedules and routines shift to something more predictable. Structure and consistency are within reach and we settle into the new norm that this season has in store. This reset is a perfect time to take inventory of where we are and more importantly where we want to go in the months and year ahead.


Helping individuals with Chemotherapy, Radiation, Alopecia, Diabetes, Menopause, Childbirth, Lupus, Burn Victims, Trichotillomania and COVID-19 related hair loss.

Whether part of a large company or working on your own, many of the same challenges apply. Often, we as women feel like we are the only ones facing a particular career change or business challenge. However, we are not alone. There are many who have come before us or that walk alongside us who have faced similar challenges or have ideas on how to get to the next level. Surrounding yourself with positive, likeminded people year-round can positively impact you personally and professionally – no matter the season you are in.

Each member of The NXT Level Collective has an incredible story of their own. Their website and social media are full of these powerful women and inspiring stories. + IG @nxt_levelcollective. “One of the best things about community of creative

Rochester is that we are a people building our own futures.

Interior designer and entrepreneur Aubre Fox is no stranger to this type of support. As the founder of The NXT Level Collective, a personal and professional development community of women, she is on a mission to bring women together to support one another and succeed. The NXT Level Collective, formerly Roc Girl Bosses, rebranded and relaunched earlier this year and currently has over 30 members. Different from a typical networking group, this group of powerful women empower each other and provide resources so one another can succeed. Many of its members are entrepreneurs, sole proprietors, freelancers, makers, and moms looking to level up – regardless of the stage they’re in. The group strives to create authentic relationships to share solutions and ideas and help each other grow.

Instead of a competitive landscape, the women at The NXT Level Collective are genuinely invested in each other’s success. When it comes to advice Aubre offers women looking to support one another and succeed in business and life, she shares these tips:


Fall serves as a really nice time for a reset. Picture where you want to be by the end of the year. Think about what you could master or accomplish between October and December and how important that is to your overall success.

Keep in mind that the ‘to do’ list will never go away. It just changes and more gets put on it. Using the word “intention” instead of “goal” reframes it into something you actually want to do. Setting an intention of what you want to accomplish and breaking a big goal into baby steps can be very beneficial. From there, you can see where you need support.

The biggest mistake we make is feeling like we need to do it all by ourselves. Write down what you need to do and see how you can lighten the load by pulling others in to help in areas that may not be your strengths. Leverage a group or friend to help hold you accountable and discuss challenges along the way.

One of the most common pitfalls of small business owners is having goals but not creating a strategy to achieve them. The NXT Level Collective in-house business coach and founder of CORE Leadership, Maria Kast, offers a quarterly workshop-style course in which she guides you through her 90-day Next Level Strategy to help gain traction toward your goals.


Look to see who you can make connections with. Rochester is full of people willing to help and lend a hand. We are a large city with a small-town feel. Many local women identify with the city and want to see it grow and flourish. Supporting each other and the local economy the best we can is one way we can positively impact the area.

Find ways to connect with others and be purposeful about it. Whether it’s finding people in your industry or just people you admire that you feel you could learn something from, connect with them and have a conversation. Be intentional about who you connect with and build authentic relationships.

One of the best things about Rochester is that we are a community of creative people building our own futures. So many people follow their passions, and that’s incredible to watch.


Get out of your head and get out there. I’ve met fabulous people from doing this. If you aren’t comfortable, surround yourself with people who are and have them help introduce you. Seek other women who are supportive and will recommend you as they hear of relevant opportunities.

So many positive things are happening. Seek out events to meet new people or experience new things. It will broaden your perspective and maybe even make a new connection for you and your business. It could be something related to your industry, your community, or even a non-profit you feel passionate about.

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EMPOWERING Women Through Fashion

Pittsford resident and personal stylist, Kelly McCarthy, helps local women build confidence by discovering their style, curating a closet they love, and embracing the season’s most desirable trends. She has always loved beautiful clothes; learning about quality garments and classic styling from her mother, she is a fashion enthusiast who loves how the right outfit can help someone build confidence in themselves.

In 2017, Kelly decided to re-enter the workforce after staying home to raise her three children. She began working as a personal stylist for cabi, a home-based designer fashion brand offering women’s clothing and personal styling. Just like Kelly, the cabi brand stands for much more than just clothing on a rack. It is dedicated to helping women find their own unique style, create curated closets, and give them confidence to feel their best.


“When you look good, you feel good and then you do good. It’s never been about the clothes, it is about the woman wearing the clothes… how she feels and what she does as a result,” McCarthy shares.

Kelly sat down with us to share tips on building a classic wardrobe while also embracing the season’s latest trends.

Building a Curated Closet

Building a designer, curated closet over time with collections that mix and match from one season to the next is the dream. Investing in quality pieces you will love for a long time and building upon those items each season creates a capsule wardrobe that is easy and fun to pull together. A capsule wardrobe is a collection of clothes that all work together and can be put together and styled in different ways.

To create this type of wardrobe, Kelly advises clients to first refine their style. Decide what type of look you want and how you want to show up for the world. From there, she works with women to help discover the fit and colors that work best with their body type and skin tone. Having a professional color analysis can be well worth the time so you understand which colors work best for you and those that don’t. When it comes to fit, finding something off the rack that fits perfectly is ideal, but not always possible. When you can, work with a local tailor (especially for staple pieces such as pants, dresses, or jackets) to get the perfect fit. It can be relatively inexpensive and make a world of difference.

Being thoughtful about how you build your wardrobe makes capsule dressing effortless and allows for easy daily outfits. With this approach, women love that they no longer go to their closets and see a closet full of clothes “with nothing to wear.” Having a multitude of choices that work together gives a woman the confidence to face the day.

“Finding your unique style is easy with a personal stylist that cares about you and can help translate how you want to show up in the world. We understand fit, styling and can even help push you out of your comfort zone to find what works for you,” shares Kelly.

What to Wear: Fall Wardrobe Essentials

Design experts spend hours observing and pulling together inspiration from the runways in the form of mood boards, which really drive the trends coming forward each season. Here are some of the top trends Kelly and the design team embrace this fall:

Brownie Points: Brown is everywhere and in every shade. From chocolate and caramel to camel and khaki, this is the new neutral for fall and will be a foundational color for your wardrobe.

Ivy Style: The resurgence of classic, tailored pieces has come. This look embraces iconic items such as V-neck sweaters and well-fitting pencil pants. Here, the trend isn’t about fashion, it’s about style. These pieces will live in your closet forever.

Refined Rebel: This look is femininity with an edge. Black and leather are part of this trend but not everything. Add flowy pants or cargos with ruffles and lace to soften the look. The perfect blend of soft and tough elements pull it together.

Follow Kelly on IG for more inspiration @cabibykelly


• The over-the-knee boots that made an appearance last season are all over the runways for Fall ’23. Lace up boots and loafers are also huge this season.

• It’s all about the handles for your handbags or carry a bag held close to the body, which is trending as well.

• Keep your makeup simple and effortless. A strong brow is back and so is a glossy lip. Better skincare is trending heavily in the makeup world along with creating a fresh and clean palette.

Styling Tips from Kelly

Accessorizing and remembering the rule of 3 can take any outfit to the next level and give you the look of being well-styled. “We can all put on a pair of pants and a top. It’s adding at least two more pieces above the waist that takes a look from drab to fabulous,” Kelly says.

• A belt and a topper make this standard outfit more styled and refined.

• Layers such as a scarf or a statement piece of jewelry elevate the look even more.

• A handbag, hat, or sunglasses add the finishing touch to pull the look together.

“Loving the way you feel is always in style. In today’s busy world, we don’t have time to worry about what we put on… but we know when we get it right, it matters. When we nail it, we step out the door with confidence, ready to conquer the day.”

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In the heart of the Neighborhood of the Arts, Stacy K has expanded her presence on Russell St., now occupying both 43 and 53 Russell St. This expansion wasn’t just about growing her own business; Stacy K sought to create a hub for fellow womenowned small businesses to flourish. Enter Lainey Schmidt, the creative force behind The Fleurish Co. Lainey’s passion for crafting small-batch, hand-poured soy candles found a new home at 53 Russell St., and the synergy between these ventures has been nothing short of remarkable.

At The Fleurish Co., Lainey specializes in retail and wholesale hand-poured soy candles, all lovingly crafted right in the store. Customers now have the privilege of engaging in the creative process, customizing orders, and experiencing the diverse array of scents in person. The candles are a testament to Lainey’s dedication to quality, as she utilizes natural wax and wicks alongside premium, phthalate-free ingredients like essential oils to fashion exquisite, aromatic candles that customers adore.

Stacy says the synergy between Stacy K Floral and The Fleurish Co has been incredible, as the two now collaborate for customers’ events and design plans. All custom creations by the Stacy K Floral team happen at the design lab, from weddings and events to silk and everlasting.

In the spirit of enriching the experience even further, Stacy K envisioned a coffee haven within Stacy K Floral. Rather than embarking on this endeavor herself, she eagerly sought another local businesswoman to inhabit the space. Quynh Bui, renowned for her mobile coffee cart, embraced the opportunity and introduced Winter Swan Coffee Bar to the world within Stacy K Floral at 43 Russell St. Winter Swan beckons with its Vietnamese coffee delights, fostering a sense of community and camaraderie around delicious flavors and aromas.

“Stacy K is becoming more of a lifestyle brand,” Stacy says. What started out as wedding-focused, Stacy loves that now she helps people celebrate different facets of their lives. With the expansion to include Lainey and Quynh’s businesses, Stacy creates a beautiful destination for people to come enjoy life and community while selecting and designing candles, gifts, and décor.

Stacy’s enthusiasm shines through as she proudly aids her fellow female entrepreneurs in navigating the transition from home-based businesses to brick-and-mortar establishments. Drawing from her own experience, Stacy understands the fears and uncertainties that accompany such shifts. Guided by a supportive network that believed in her vision, she is determined to pay it forward, guiding others towards their aspirations. For Lainey, Stacy’s mentorship has shifted the narrative from “What if it doesn’t work out?” to “What if it all works out?” This shift in perspective has proven invaluable, evident in the positive influence that Lainey has brought to the shared Stacy K collaboration.

Stacy K looks forward to collaborating with and lifting other women entrepreneurs, perhaps bringing back classes to let people share their talents within the space, for instance, but for now, she loves that Stacy K is able to lift the incredible talents of Lainey and Quynh while crafting an exceptional space for customers.

Together, Stacy K, The Fleurish Co., and Winter Swan Coffee Bar epitomize the power of collaboration, fostering a haven where innovation, creativity, and community intertwine.


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Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Fall Look with Skincare & Makeup

For Shelby Nairy, esthetics is more than styling a makeup look—it’s helping someone look and feel their best, inside and out.

Hailing from Webster, NY, Shelby has been running her own business, Glam & Co. Beauty, since July 2020, offering makeup, waxing, lash lifts, brow laminations, and facials. Her path started after creating an Instagram account in 2015 to share glam looks that spawned into her first client, and attending and graduating from the Continental School of Beauty for Esthetics in 2018, combining self-taught skills from high school with knowledge gained in college.

With fall here and weather and trends shifting, we asked Shelby for her take on makeup and skincare tips and trends for the season, as well as her experience in running her own business.

Do you have any advice for someone just starting out trying to find a makeup or skincare routine that works best for them?

Approaching skincare and makeup can feel super overwhelming, so start small and slowly add new steps/ products into your routine. You’ll notice right away if your skin does not like something!

For makeup I highly suggest watching videos, getting a makeup one-on-one lesson, and starting with a solid set of products. You don’t need it all, and you don’t always need to use what everyone else is! Try things and slowly find the brands that fit for you.

For every beginner’s bag, I suggest staple pieces: primer, foundation, concealer, setting powder, bronzer, blush, highlighter, maybe a brow gel/powder, eyeshadow palette, mascara, setting spray, and eyeliner, if you wear it. Practice, practice, practice! It took me years to perfect how I like to do my own makeup.

“Making people feel confident and beautiful never gets old. Enhancing someone’s natural beauty and giving an authentic experience fills my cup day to day.”


With skincare, less is more. For AM, I suggest a cleanser based on what your skin needs, and a Vitamin C serum, moisturizer, eye cream, and an SPF. For PM, I use a cleanser (you can use the same as AM!), hyaluronic acid, moisturizer, and eye cream.

If you are over 25, I highly suggest starting a retinol treatment in the evenings to combat signs of aging. Start with a small percentage, only use it a few days a week, and work your way up from there.

I also recommend a facial by a professional quarterly to keep up with your skin changes and have a second opinion on your skincare regime.

Any tips for makeup/skincare for work vs. casual settings?

My favorite is to use a tinted SPF in AM skincare, throw on a little blush and mascara, and you’re ready to head out the door! Simple but classy.


The “latte” eyeshadow look is all the rage. It’s essentially a tan/ brown eyeshadow all over the lid with a little darker depth on the outer corner, and most opt for a brown winged liner that can be done with a shadow or liner. I can also see this “latte” trend becoming more of a terracotta trend in the fall, adding in more reds/rusty/orangey tones. A half or 3/4 lash will also make your natural lashes pop without overdoing it.

Any ideal practices to follow with the changing of the seasons?

It’s important to be in tune with your skin and what it needs. When seasons start to change, we notice our skin change too. When it gets colder, our skin tends to get a little drier, and a thicker moisturizer and a bedroom humidifier will help with this. During warmer months we tend to get a little oilier/have combo skin, but it’s important not to stop using moisturizer. A lot of people think moisture equals oil, but that’s not the case! Using a lighter weight moisturizer (gel or aloe based) will give the hydration you need. If you strip your skin of natural oils/ hydration, your skin will actually start producing more oil. Also, drink your water!

How would you describe running your own business? Have there been hurdles to overcome?

Running your own business is tough yet rewarding. The hardest part by far is finding a work/life balance. For me, it’s hard to find that balance during the week because 99.9% of the time I work weddings on Saturdays and Sundays. (There were many, many weeks in the beginning that I never had a day off.)

Also, finding time to do book work, clean the studio, meet with a CPA, be involved in the community, run through Quickbooks, assess goals/income/overhead, and plan what comes next comes at a cost — our time. Burnout is so, so real and finding a balance to do things you enjoy and fill your cup back up is really important. Hustle culture took over for a brief moment, and I think we shifted to realize we need to take care of ourselves and that self care is essential.

Do you have a favorite work experience from the past year or an event that really stands out?

Wedding days are so special for so many reasons. Each bride is so uniquely different, and I love the women I get to work with! Some of my favorite experiences are going to new venues on wedding mornings; I love to see different ones and how they accommodate bridal parties. My favorite thing is bonding with a bride so well they become a friend, and I keep up with them after their wedding day.

Follow Shelby on Instagram for inspiration @glamitup_shelbs or visit her website at

Shining for Breast Cancer Warriors


Breast cancer, a formidable adversary that affects millions of lives each year, not only takes a toll on physical health but also brings about a myriad of emotional and financial challenges. In the heart of New York, a beacon of support shines brightly for those in need – Embrace Your Sisters (EYS). This remarkable organization, established in 2006, has become a lifeline for individuals battling breast cancer across 13 counties around Rochester.

What makes them truly unique is their dedication to filling a crucial niche in breast cancer services. The organization specializes in offering short-term emergency financial assistance to local residents. The impact of a breast cancer diagnosis is not limited to medical challenges alone; it often brings about an overwhelming financial burden. EYS steps in to alleviate these financial hardships, allowing patients and their families to focus on healing and recovery.


A grant from Embrace Your Sisters can be a lifeline for people grappling with mounting medical expenses. These emergency funds cover co-pays, medical bills, rent or mortgage payments, utilities, and other essential expenses. This holistic approach aims to improve the quality of life for individuals and maintain a stable environment during their arduous battle. EYS provides more than just financial support; it extends a helping hand towards practical needs, emotional well-being, and other vital services, creating a comprehensive safety net for those in need.

At the heart of Embrace Your Sisters lies an extraordinary story of compassion and determination. The organization was born out of the experience of one of its founders, who faced her own breast cancer diagnosis. Recognizing the financial strain caused by treatment options not covered by insurance, the idea of helping others in similar predicaments ignited. What started as a modest fundraiser, a chicken barbecue, has blossomed into a robust force for good, having raised and disbursed almost half a million dollars to hundreds of survivors.

The memory of the organization’s founder, Chrissann Philipson, who lost her battle with breast cancer in 2016, continues to inspire and drive the mission of Embrace Your Sisters. Her legacy lives on through the organization’s impactful work.

Krista Jackson, second vice president of EYS, shares her personal connection to the cause as a breast cancer survivor of ten years. She emphasizes that the organization is her way to pay it forward, offering support and strength to those navigating the challenges of breast cancer. As a 100% volunteer-driven organization, Jackson emphasizes that every donation directly translates into assistance for those who need it most, making each contribution a tangible step towards easing the burdens of survivors.

Embrace Your Sisters organizes two major fundraising events each year. September 24th marks the 12th annual Positively

Pink in Pittsford Walk along the scenic Erie Canal offers an opportunity to raise awareness, come together as a community, and support the cause. Register for this event online, spread the word and gather a team of friends and family. Registration begins at 9:00 am and the walk begins at 10:00 am. There is no fee to participate; however, donors of at least $30 receive an event t-shirt at the registration table that day.

The organization’s Tea at Two fashion show fundraiser, held at Casa Larga Vineyard on the first Sunday of May, features survivors as models accompanied by their heartwarming stories, raising funds while celebrating the strength and resilience of those affected by breast cancer. DJs and guest personalities, a silent auction, raffles, sweet and savory snacks, cash bar, and Casa Larga wine make this an incredible event. Capped at 300 guests, get your tickets early as it often sells out!

Embrace Your Sisters stands as a testament to the power of community, compassion, and collective action. In a world where breast cancer affects 1 in 8 women, the organization’s unwavering commitment to providing practical support and essential resources shines as a beacon of hope. Whether through financial aid, emotional assistance, or community events, EYS continues to extend its embrace to those fighting the battle against breast cancer, reminding them they are not alone in their journey.

To become part of this powerful movement, volunteer your time, lend support through donations, or participate in the organization’s events. For more information about their impactful work and upcoming events, visit their website at, find them on social media, or contact them at or call/text 585-624-9690. Be a part of their mission, turning compassion into action and standing shoulder to shoulder with survivors in their fight against breast cancer.


Fall in the Finger Lakes


As autumn winds blow and foliage changes colors, head to the heart of the Finger Lakes region to Seneca and Cayuga Lakes for the perfect oasis. Delve into women’s rights history, savor Finger Lakes wines, and explore lakeside beauty. Experience outdoor adventures, from boating to fishing. Choose from charming rentals, cozy B&Bs, or resorts for a perfect stay. With Cayuga and Seneca Lakes as your playground, embrace recreational opportunities and gorgeous vistas especially in the fall. Home to abundant wineries, Seneca County crowns the Finger Lakes as New York’s premier wine region.

Cayuga Lake

Welcome to Cayuga Lake, the heart of the picturesque Finger Lakes region! If you’re seeking an unforgettable escape into nature’s embrace, look no further. Nestled amidst rolling hills, vineyards, and charming towns, Cayuga Lake offers a cornucopia of delights for all types of travelers. Whether you’re a nature lover, a wine connoisseur, an adventure seeker, or someone who simply craves relaxation, Cayuga Lake has something special for you.


The excitement around Cayuga Lake doesn’t stop at its shores. The area offers a vibrant array of activities to complement your lakeside retreat. Summer concerts, Thirsty Thursdays, and happy hours provide opportunities to enjoy music and local beverages. Car shows, farmers markets, and the annual Wheat Harvest Festival provide a little bit of everything for residents and visitors of all ages. Special events at the wineries and breweries around town offer a taste of the region’s rich culture and flavors. Live music resonates throughout the week and year, infusing the atmosphere with melodies that lift the spirit.


Adventure seekers will find ample opportunities to get their adrenaline pumping in the Finger Lakes region. Hiking enthusiasts can explore a variety of scenic trails, offering stunning vistas of waterfalls, gorges, and panoramic lake views. The region’s state parks and nature reserves provide a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, where you can partake in activities like biking, fishing, birdwatching, and more.


Escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life by venturing into the charming towns that dot the shoreline of Cayuga Lake. Each town has its unique character, offering a delightful array of local shops, art studios, and farm-to-table dining experiences. Embrace the warmth and hospitality of the locals as you stroll through the streets, creating cherished memories along the way.


There’s a wide variety of choices of accommodations around Cayuga Lake, from full-service hotels, luxurious, quaint B&Bs, historic inns, or campgrounds, Cayuga County’s central location makes it an ideal hub for meetings and events.

Or combine all the above at Interlaken’s Good Life Farm, home of Finger Lakes Cider House. Sample delicious ciders and farm-totable food, relax and unwind with friends and family surrounded by the beautiful orchard/farm and Cayuga Lake, and then stay in The Yurt, a studio style Creekside “hobbit hole” or the private three bedroom loft above the Cider House tasting room.


Cayuga Lake is surrounded by a flourishing wine region, boasting a plethora of vineyards and wineries. As one of the largest Finger Lakes, it offers prime conditions for grape cultivation, resulting in exceptional wines. Wine enthusiasts can embark on a delightful tasting journey, savoring exquisite wines and meeting passionate vintners who are eager to share their stories and expertise. Sip and savor the flavors of the Finger Lakes, and you’ll gain a deeper appreciation for the art of winemaking.

Cayuga Lake Wine Trail was America’s first wine trail and they tout “from the first sip to your last look at the lake, the [trail] will impress and inspire you.” Visit for the complete list and more information on these incredible wineries.


Create unforgettable moments and let Cayuga Lake become your cherished escape from the everyday hustle. Plan your trip today, and let your heart be drawn to the captivating charm of this enchanting destination. Check out for travel / tourism information.


Seneca Lake

Nestled among the captivating Finger Lakes, Seneca Lake stands as a testament to time’s embrace, cradling secrets and stories that span centuries. Just as steamboats and barges once gracefully sailed its waters in the 1800s, relics of that era now rest at its southern depths, preserved for modern adventurers to explore through scuba diving.

Seneca Lake’s rich history doesn’t stop there. During WWII, it played a vital role as a training ground for Navy and Air Force soldiers at the Sampson Training Station, now reborn as the picturesque Sampson State Park. The lake has also served as a testing site for submarines, bearing witness to silent tales of naval exploration beneath its shimmering surface.

Legends dance around Seneca Lake like ripples on its surface. Whispers of hidden passages linking lakes, tales of sea serpents, and the enigmatic “Lake Drums” that resonate across its expanse, echo the mysteries of centuries gone by.

The lake’s generous size, embracing vines in a gentle climate, has nurtured 40 wineries and vineyards, inviting over 600,000 visitors annually to savor their fruits. Seneca Lake, crowned the lake trout capital of the world, hosts the renowned National Lake Trout Derby, while its mysterious depths extend 200 feet below sea level, an uncharted realm beneath its serene facade. Unlock the door to Seneca Lake’s treasures - a haven where history, legend, and natural marvels unite in a symphony of wonder.


According to, “Route 14 runs the entire length of Seneca Lake, connecting Geneva and Watkins Glen. In between these two communities is more than 30 miles of colorful fall landscapes and scenic views. Route 14 is also a great way to experience Finger Lakes wines, as much of the Seneca Lake Wine Trail traverses this road.” Christine and Joel (of WildPreciousNow) highly recommend checking out Hector Falls on Rte 14, with its “expanse of water tumbling and dancing over limestone and shale cliffs and into Seneca Lake.”


Located in the “heart of it all” and situated on 44 tree lined acres for over 35 years, The Windmill Farm & Craft Market is nestled in the rolling hills of Upstate New York. Just south of Penn Yan on State Route 14A and bordered by Keuka and Seneca Lakes, the scenic surroundings are almost unimaginable.

The Windmill is host to over 175 indoor and outdoor shops filled with handcrafted items too numerous to count. You will discover great food, fresh produce, flowers, custom cabinetry, furniture, fashion, local wineries, artistry, gifts, micro brews, entertainment, and so much more.


Considered a cool climate region, the Finger Lakes region is a popular grape-growing, wine-making area, specializing in sparking wines, Rieslings, Pinot Noirs, and Ice Wines, but also known for its Chardonnays, Cabernet Francs, and several French-American and Native American varieties. Check out the dozens of world-renowned Seneca Lake Wineries to sample the wide varieties of wine highlighting the grown here, made here mantra. Visit for more information about the wineries around this lake.

2023 marks the 30th Anniversary of Deck the Halls! During this event, you’ll enjoy a self-guided tour of participating Seneca Lake Wine Trail wineries decked out for the holiday season, sampling delicious wine and food pairings and collecting ornaments at each stop from Nov. 17-19, Dec 1-3, 2023. For more information, check out



One of the most popular accommodations in the region are Bed & Breakfasts. In fact, Seneca County also offers a Bed & Brunch if you prefer a more relaxed morning. These impressive and historic houses not only afford the comforts of home, but their innkeepers will astound you with their culinary creations and hospitable service. If you’re not familiar with local cuisine or attractions, just ask your B&B manager; chances are you’ll get insider suggestions unavailable in travel guides.

Seneca Lake Resorts offer a unique lakeside tourist destination located just 15-minutes south of Geneva, NY on the eastern shore of Seneca Lake. Day trip throughout the Finger Lakes region on wine, cheese, and craft beverage trails, and dine at eclectic local restaurants from Geneva to Watkins Glen. Enjoy on-site biking, fishing, playgrounds, playing fields, a beach, a visitor’s center, and 10 miles of hiking trails, plus all that the Finger Lakes region has to offer.

Christine Halliday of WildPreciousNow says, “After spending a day exploring Seneca Lake and its many wineries, cap off your trip with dinner at one of the area’s fine restaurants before turning in for the night at one of its cozy bed & breakfasts or boutique hotels. There’s nothing quite like waking up in idyllic upstate New York surrounded by nature.”


...and so much more!

The Windmill is a pet-friendly, family fun, relaxing place to spend your Saturday. Located on 40 beautiful acres just South of Penn Yan and North of Watkins Glen on SR 14-A, with ample free parking and free admission.

“Located in the heart of it all and home to something special.”

The Windmill is host to multiple events and activities to enhance your experience with live entertainment most Saturdays. Check out our Facebook page for all the details.

over 175 businesses including: Crafters • Local Wineries • Craft Beers and Spirits Farm Fresh Produce • Gift Shops Restaurants • Tasty Treats • Handmade Items Amish & Mennonite Baked Goods Custom Furniture & Cabinetry
3900 State Route 14-A, Penn Yan, New York 14527 • 315-536-3032 Local Food, Local Shops, Local Crafts, from our market to you.

Rebecca Bardwell


The Finger Lakes is one of my favorite places in the US, so even with twin toddlers we were so excited to take the boys up for their second trip last month! I’ve been to the Finger Lakes almost a dozen times now, but going with mobile toddlers sure is a different experience.


Visiting wineries with large outdoor areas for the kids to roam! We lucked out and had BEAUTIFUL weather on our trip so pretty much only visited wineries that had open outdoor space we could let the kiddos roam around at including @standingstoneny, @anthonyroadwine, @j.r.dill, @kuekaspringsvineyard, @lucasvineyards, @boundarybreaks (super dog friendly too!) & @weisvines!

We stayed in Watkins Glen right on the lake in a VRBO walkable to downtown which was perfect for kiddos who get up extremely early. Every morning we would get out and walk around town after breakfast and grab coffee in town. There is a playground right on the lake at Clute Park but our FAVORITE spot to visit is at the top of the lake at the @fingerlakeswelcomecenter in

Geneva. We love the welcome center because they serve food, coffee, local wine & beer, and have seating right on the lake with an amazing playground! There are great walking paths there as well: Go left from the center for a long path that leads to a state park or go right past the hotels for a second playground!

Our favorite “hike” we did on this trip was to Taughnnock Falls on Cayuga Lake! This is a great one mile out, one mile back trek that ends in an INSANE waterfall. The trail is actually FLAT, so if you want to bring a stroller to keep the kids contained you can!

Best tips for traveling to wine country with toddlers: Bring help. (Just kidding...somewhat.) It was nice to have extra sets of hands with my parents on this trip, but even on outings without them we planned our trip off season, and fed the boys lunch/snacks if we did an actual wine tasting to keep them entertained during that. I actually had a lot of anxiety about bringing our kids on this trip which really wasn’t needed. I think any toddler mom worries about bringing their kids anywhere public, but we really had the best time. The Finger Lakes is predominately frequented by couples so I was anxious about my kids interrupting other people’s relaxation. I think we need to be cognizant of respecting other’s time and atmosphere, but literally every person we met on this trip with our kids was so kind, engaging, and insanely friendly, which is exactly why this area holds a special place in my heart. Life is so different with twin toddlers these days, but I’m still so glad we can continue traveling back to one of our favorite places with them.


Katherine Chase


Come prepared to fall in love! Our wineries are owned by families who have been growing grapes for generations or who have just started and plan to be growing grapes for generations to come. The passion that was passed down to them can be seen and tasted in every aspect of their business, from their tasting rooms to their staff, their labels, and the thought that goes into how they present and serve their wines.


Our wine trail has 12 member wineries and amongst those wineries you’ll be offered a very diverse experience. Some cater to the original tasting room experience where you stand at the bar and taste one wine at a time in front of a server, others offer an independent flight and let you taste at your leisure, and some offer a more personalized sit-down experience. If every winery offered the same thing, you’d forget who you visited, so in this case, diversity is a good thing!


The area is the busiest in the summer, but wineries and accommodations are both open year-round. Less demand in the cooler months might bring a lower lodging rate and a more intimate winery experience which elevates your overall visit. Oftentimes, if you visit in those cooler months, you might be served from a winemaker or owner directly.


Each winery is unique and has their own flare. I definitely suggest going and seeing (or tasting) for yourself to see what they each specialize. Regionally, we’re known for our Rieslings – you won’t find a bad one anywhere! That being said, since everyone carries one or more Rieslings, many of the wineries are starting to get creative with how they make theirs to add their own twist to make them stand out from the bunch more.

Rochester | THEHOMEPUBLICATIONS.COM 45 O p e n D a i l y C i d e r - W i n e - B e e r F a r m - t o - T a b l e E a t e r y O r g a n i c U - P i c k w w w . f i n g e r l a k e s c i d e r h o u s e . c o m 4 0 1 7 h i c k o k r o a d i n t e r l a k e n , N e w Y o r k Sheldrake Point Winery Sheldrake Point HS E LDRAK E POINT W I NERY ENJOY AT HOME

Best friends and travel partners, Christine and Joel of WildPreciousNow, celebrate “making the most of your one wild and precious life.” They share their favorites from the Seneca Lake area.

“The Finger Lakes region is renowned for its natural beauty. With lush rolling hills, sparkling lakes, and charming villages, it’s no wonder that this area has become such a popular destination for couples who want to escape from their everyday lives. With more than 1000 waterfalls and gorges in the Finger Lakes region, the area is a treasure trove of beautiful views, trails and scenic walks, drives, and overlooks.”

Christine and Joel





WINERY: One of the oldest and most recognized wineries in the Finger Lakes, it also boasts an exceptional brewery with a dozen tap lines and a selection of rotating beers.

JR DILL WINERY: Where the philosophy to let the grapes be what they want to be and show up in their full flavor with as little tampering as possible results in award-winning wines that can be sipped and savored with a bird’s eye view of Seneca Lake.

LAKEWOOD VINEYARD: Tradition and technology come together to produce fruitful vineyards and delicious wines.


AND ESTATES: A destination in and of itself, with three completely different wineries, a microbrewery, vineyard, and café all on one exquisite estate. Bonus at Three Brothers is the cottage for rent on the estate, “making vineyard destination dreams come true with sprawling views of the vineyards and the lake, stunning sunsets and sunrises. You’ll feel like you’re worlds away but still be just steps from all the action.”


“The Finger Lakes region is home to some amazing restaurants that are sure to please all kinds of diners. Whether you’re looking for fresh seafood or classic pub grub with a twist, there is something here for everyone!”


ELF IN THE OAK: We love the beautiful views and the selection of teas and coffee, but what really blew us away was the food. The menu changes, but if you get the chance, don’t miss the homemade pastrami biscuit and perfectly flaky cinnamon roll... There are no words, only swoons.

3812 BISTRO : A pup-friendly, farm-to-table eatery located at the beautiful and scenic Lakeside Resort. It’s another fantastic place to enjoy coffee and a meal while gazing out at the majesty of Seneca Lake.

THAI ELEPHANTS: Modern takes on classic Thai dishes and incredible, friendly service. We especially loved the jasmine tea, the fresh summer roll with its sweet and salty crunch, and the Pad Thai was fork-twirling perfection! For a little show at the end of dinner, go for the fried ice cream!

THE RUSTY PIG: We loved their extensive craft beer selection and slow smoked hickory and applewood meats. The Fun Guys and brisket appetizer is sweet and smoky perfection, with tangy Boursin on a meaty mushroom cap. The brisket and sides were delicious and perfectly flavored, so we decided to take home some Rusty Pig barbecue sauce to savor the deliciousness a little bit longer.


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Crafting, Exploring, & Making Memories with Alex Militello

As foliage begins to turn this autumn, you may be looking for new activities to keep your family entertained or perhaps new places to visit. Alexandra Militello is a Victor-based blogger, mom, and preschool teacher who has made a name for herself by sharing creative crafts, favorite places to visit for family-friendly activities, and snapshots of authentic family life.

Social media has steadily become a trusted source of information, advice, and community in recent years. Alex understands the powerful tool her platform has and acknowledges that she has gained beneficial knowledge from online bloggers. Alex acknowledges the challenges of social media and the pressures of being a mom, but says, “the community out there has totally outweighed the negative side… there are real people out there sharing real experiences.”

Alex understands the frustrations and hardships that come with trying to conceptualize new family activities and local destinations worth the effort to visit with busy schedules. She shares, “I think it’s just getting over that hurdle of 'Where do we even start?'”

As a teacher and a mother, Alex has developed a wealth of knowledge of accessible, practical tips for entertaining little ones. After her mother urged her to take her information online, Militello has stepped into the role of social media influencer and blogger and shares her tips and must-see places for fall 2023.

My mother once told me, “Nothing worthwhile comes easy.”


one. Duvall Farms/“The Pumpkin Palace” (Bloomfield), family-owned farm since 2019.

two. Ride a train from the Genesee Valley Railroad Museum to a pumpkin patch. In Rush, NY, this is the only operating railroad museum in New York State.

three. Pick apples at Wickham Farms (Penfield) or The Apple Shed (Newark). Each venue offers delectable treats, farm animals, and family-friendly attractions.

four. Haunted Walk at Lincoln Hill Farms – This event is not too scary for the kids and is fun for adults too, with great views and live music on Saturday nights.

five. Explore fall foliage at Highland Park (Rochester) or Cumming Nature Center Trail (Naples).

six. Powers Farm Market (Pittsford) for tractor rides, teepees, cider, donuts, and more.

local spo t s

Alex especially loves Tinkergarten (Penfield) and Bristol Adventures / Aerial Adventure Park where youth and adults have creative opportunities to experience the outdoors. She emphasizes that getting outside is the point, but the more creative, the better!

If you’d rather not leave the comfort of home, creativity is essential. As a teacher, Alex relies upon recycling and reusing household supplies as well as previously used crafts. She says, “During my years of preschool, a lot of my crafting came from using nature and other resources. My daughter was talking about saving paper towels so we could use them for crafts. It’s really rewarding when that happens (recycling and reusing). We tend to pull from recycled items a lot.”

She describes the kids collecting leaves and painting them to make ghosts. She says, “You can collect things not just inside your home, but outside as well. We tend to complicate crafting a little less than we need to. It has always been important to reuse and recycle.”

If you are frugal and on a budget, or just prefer to use old art supplies, Alex’s ideas help children become more resourceful by using regular household items to actualize crafting ideas. By using their own resources and the world around them, children build upon skills and use creativity to make valuable memories.

Alex expertly captures these moments within her family and believes that if nothing else, her social media is a valuable tool to share and organize family photos. In the past, Alex has felt conflicted about her social media presence as she understands the negative effects and unrealistic expectations many viewers derive from well-known platforms. However, she focuses on its central purpose: “We can really appreciate resources that are right at our fingertips. I can whole-heartedly say that utilizing those accounts throughout my journey in motherhood has helped give me so many ideas on how to navigate it all and make things fun and educational for the kids while I have been home with them.”

My favorite part of fall is seeing the foliage with family."

With both whimsy and ingenuity, Alexandra Militello has created a social media following that is rapidly drawing attention from the local Rochester community and beyond. Always resourceful, creative, and down to earth, her page reminds many in her shoes of the joys and struggles of motherhood and family life.

Crafts for Preschoolers

Ghost Leaves: Collect leaves. Paint white then use black marker or paint when dry to add a face.

Halloween Baking soda beaker activity: You will need baking soda, white vinegar, beakers (I got mine from the $1 spot at Target), balloons, a permanent marker to draw on faces of a ghost, pumpkin, etc. Add approx. 1 tbsp baking soda into deflated balloon. Add vinegar into a container with a narrow opening (beaker or empty water bottle). Place balloon over the opening of the container. Slowly lift balloon so the baking soda falls into the vinegar to watch the balloon inflate!

Coffee Filter Painted Leaves: Cut filters to desired leaf shape. Use a hot glue gun to outline/line the leaves (this helps section off parts of the leaf to make it easy for the kids to paint). Paint designs with watercolors. Enjoy and display your art (great accent for a playroom or mantle!).

Candle Out of Wax Paper: The kids helped collect different fall-colored leaves and pressed them between two sheets of wax paper. Iron on low until they stick together and add a tea light for an affordable way to spruce up an area.

to other moms & readers

Sometimes the idea of getting out and exploring or crafting with kids can seem impossible. I am here to say that it is worth every ounce of scrambling the kids together and getting out the door. Motherhood has taught me ways to step outside more, quite literally, and out of my comfort zone to create what I hope to be some pretty special memories for our girls. I think it helps wash away expectations and the pressures of the world when you begin to make these memories of your own and they start to become traditions. I admire the virtual community I have been able to lean into in that respect; it has helped pave the way for so many moments that we cherish together as a family, as you can see in what I like to call our virtual photo book (Instagram). My mother once told me, “Nothing worthwhile comes easy.” I understand that now and appreciate that message in every single aspect of my day.

For more craft ideas and local fun, follow @alexmmilitello on Instagram

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