RWO'S January 2021 New Year New You Edition

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NEW IN THE ROC Hannah’s Fertility




DISHING WITH THE DIVA’S Scalp Micropigmentation
























A MOTHER’S WORDS Heather Zajkowski


IN HER OWN WORDS Stephanie Forrester






FOR A GOOD CAUSE The Esther Project



















SHE HUSTLES TALKS E’Tiana Larkin LS Jones Unapologetically Authentic Avenue Blackbox Theatre CE Eaton Roc Nurses Face Forward Bauers Boutique Boujee Boos Luxury Divine Whiffs Salted by MLB Hope in Art Studios Judy Natalie, LLC The Pace of Grace









jan. edition { TABLE OF CONTENTS }




























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“Nothing can dim the light that shines from within.”


his edition of Rochester Woman Online starts of 2021 with the truly fabulous, local radio personality,

and all around bad a*# girl with a dream, Racqui B as our latest coverwoman. After a truly unprecident 2020, we wanted to start off the New Year with one of the most incredible editions ever! Racqui B has an inspiring story. She is a girl following her dreams, and not taking no for an answer. She is so much biggesr then just Rochester, but is not holding back when it comes to living her best life. Read all about her story starting on page [20] and then make sure to share with all your friends and family.



On the latest cover of Rochester Woman Online launching our January 2021 edition, we are excited to have the truly fabulous “Queen” chasing her dreams, Racqui B photographed at Studio One Four Seven by local photographer Chris Johnson.



I think Maya Angelous said it perfectly when she stated, “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” If 2020 didn’t leave you feeling even the slightest bit defeated, I am not sure you were really paying attention. So many people lost, businesses that closed, riots, changes that had to be made personally and professionally. But, here we are in 2021 and we made it! And for me, like so many others, we have learned to pivot. Learned not to take things for granted. We have been forced to change in order to make things work and in some cases its truly made us realize what to get rid of and what to focus on. In this edition we have so many amazing women telling their stories of strength both personally and professionally during these crazy times. Our She Hustles Talks, women entrepreneurs special section has truly taken off! Read about 12 incredible lady bosses who are hustlin to build their businesses starting on page [111] with the empowering E’Tiana Larkin on our cover. Don’t miss following us on social media (because that is where it is all at now) as we are very excited to be launching Buffalo Woman Online in February, along with a global women’s quarterly publication called Influential Woman Online. We aren’t slowing down in 2021...This is just the beginning. Come join us for the ride!




Kelly Breuer Ayanna Jackson Kelly Breuer Christopher Johnson Jeff Gerew Michele Ashlee Kijana Crues Michal Lepore KL Storyography

Devin Mack Kameron Ashford Rob Daniels K. Victoria Photography

Dr Pam Denton Robin DeWind Bonnie Floyd Alana Cahoon Lisa Wagner Judi Swanson Savon Holt Denise Karma Clifford Tracy Simone Dr Shanelle Benson Reid Johnny Williams Catya Polland Tammy Vreeland Rumella Cameron Sharlamar Curry Beth Parry Cindy DeCarolis Crystal Banfield Gabriella Rose Fiederlein Angela McGhee Terry Daniele Tiffany Lewis Giovanna Walton Jarod Schoonmaker Kristin Bauer Gross Ebony Nicole Smith Latiffany Anderson

Amanda Ashley Cindy Scribani Kelli LaPage Talena Skye Dr Pebble Kranz Gabrielle Marie Heather Zajkowski Evelyn Spruill Thalia Pabon Katina Karl Myshon Bryant Cheryl Snead Stephanie Foresster Sharlyn CE Eaton Chastity Singletary Christine Grandin E’Tiana Larkin LS Jones Letitia Torres Caeresa Richardson Heidi LaDuca Ahlia Kitwana Pam Werts


Kelly Breuer


Toni Natalie


Network Rochester

Rochester Woman ONLINE is the premier professional woman’s online publication in the greater Rochester area. Our feature articles address major topics that interest local women. Each issue includes articles on health, fashion, fitness, finance, dining, lifestyle and personal perspectives, as well as a spotlight on local area women. The electronic magazines are distributed freely through your favorite app store and will be in your inbox electronically by the first week of every month. The publication is available free of charge. Please feel free to contact publisher Kelly Breuer at 585.727.9120 or you can email us at Download our current media kit at www. The magazine is published 12 times a year by Rochester Woman ONLINE. Copyright © 2020 Rochester Woman ONLINE. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or republished without the consent of the publisher. Rochester Woman ONLINE is not responsible for unsolicited submissions, manuscripts, photos or artwork. All such submissions become the property of Rochester Woman ONLINE and will not be returned.







In December of 2020, Rochester Woman Online had the chance to interview ROC Award Winning Host & Radio Personality for The Beat 105.5 FM, “the girl with big dreams”, Racquie B. for the cover of our January 2021 New Year New You edition.

the love and support I receive here is sometimes surreal. But I pride myself on being genuine, authentic, and self-made, and I guess that has won over the hearts and respect of

It all began with me just doing a friend a favor by cohosting her radio segment, and from there my love affair with being on-air developed. This really came naturally to me. It was fate. It was destined.

We have had so much fungoing back and forth, from promoting the 2021cover, to selecting photos from her amazing photoshoot with cover photographer Chris Johnson, to the crazy 2020 and more.

What made you pick the Newhouse School of Syracuse University for Broadcast Journalism?

We hope you enjoy what she had to tell us, and learn a little bit about this radio “queen” and why we know all her dreams will come true! Who is Racqui B? Tell us a little about yourself and where you are from. I’m just a girl from a small Caribbean island that had big dreams. I was born on the island of St. Lucia, and raised on the island of St. Croix. I came to Rochester in 2005 to attend the University of Rochester. I later graduated with a BA in English Lit, and made Rochester my second home. Most people are stunned when they learn that I’m not originally from Rochester, because 20


Entertainment and media have always been passions of mine. Naturally I have a huge personality, and I enjoy performing for crowds, so a career in this field made sense. However, radio was never in my plan; it basically fell into my lap.

this community. I worked hard to be respected for my talent, and I refuse to apologize for that. When did you know you wanted to be a radio personality and why?

The Newhouse reputation supersedes anything I can say about my decision. If you want to be the best, you go where the best go; not to mention it is literally right down the street. Applying to Newhouse was me testing my purpose and skill. I made a pact with my God. Something like, “If this is my purpose then get me in.” Not only did I get in, but I must have been like top five in my class. What is your favorite part of doing what you do?




{ { SHIFT+CONTROL COVER STORY } } “Most people are stunned when they learn that I’m not originally from Rochester, because the love and support I receive here is sometimes surreal.”

I get to be myself. This industry is now rewarding people for being themselves. Every time I turn on that mic there’s no façade there’s no fraudulence, it’s Racqui being Racqui. And when I hear that positive feedback from my listeners, it motivates me to be my BEST self every time.

What about your biggest success and why? My biggest success is that I never settled. I refuse to get complacent in my career. I’m always hungry for more. This mindset has earned

Do you have any advice for other females wanting to jump in to the world of broadcasting?

Did you have any ‘a-ha!’ moments that made you rethink your being a radio personality?

The one thing I’ve learned about this industry is: if it’s not innate it will translate. Some things can be taught, other things, like being a media personality, is best served with a side of purpose. So with that being said, just make sure this is your heart’s desire, because the road to notoriety in this industry is long and often unfair. Once you fall in love with it don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Networking, branding, practicing and creating your own opportunities are essential parts of this business.

I’ve never questioned my decision to be a radio personality. However, I have questioned my time in radio. Do I want to be in radio forever? Would I rather do TV? Am I ready to venture into a bigger market? These questions and decisions still haunt me till this day. What do you know now that you didn’t know three years ago?

What has been your biggest challenge in 2020? Balancing all aspects of my life continues to be a challenge for me, but I’m getting better. Starting a career, trying to be a great mother and girlfriend, finding time for friends and family, it’s a juggling act that sometimes ends with me dropping a ball or two, but I’m trying. 24


someone that uses their popularity and platform for the betterment of themselves and everyone else around them. For the most part, I try to use my platform to inspire and empower by my actions. If I can inspire just one person with my journey, then my job is done.

me multiple awards, some college degrees, and opportunities I couldn’t even fathom. Some consider you a social media influencer...why do you think that is? In my opinion, an influencer is

Having your city behind you is the first step to success. When your hometown believes in you and supports you, that will propel you forward faster than you could even imagine. Rochester’s support has given me opportunities in other cities, and continues to push me forward. What was the biggest obstacle you faced, and how did you overcome it? My biggest obstacle was probably proving to my mother that this was the right career choice for me. My






COVER STORY } } { { SHIFT+CONTROL “Entertainment and media have always been passions of mine. Naturally I have a huge personality, and I enjoy performing for crowds, so a career in this field made sense.”

mom’s opinion means so much to me, and her desire is for me to be stable in all areas of my life. She wanted me to be an engineer. I still laugh about that to this day. She couldn’t understand my love for broadcasting and reporting, because success doesn’t come overnight in this field. So I brought her to the radio station with me one day, and when she saw me in action it all began to make sense to her; and she has been supportive ever since.

that has been in my life thus far, or came into my life during this stage, were exactly who and what I needed. All the advice and resources I’ve acquired on my journey have always reassured me of one thing: that I am

What do you think your unique skill(s) is that has helped you become successful? My personality, my authenticity, and my integrity. You can’t buy any of those things, and they can’t be duplicated. Those three qualities have opened so many doors for me, and made me stand out in a city where everyone wants to shine.

OFCOURSE!! Rochester is a great foundation, but I envision myself being bigger and better. I also believe that everything happens when it is supposed to. My time will come when the higher powers see fit. Until then I will continue mastering what I can now, and trust the process.

You ever heard the saying God puts people in your life for a reason and/ or a season? It seems like everyone

What has been your biggest accomplishment in your career thus far? This one is easy; getting my masters degree. The sacrifices I made to accomplish that goal were unbearable at first, but in the end were all worth it.

You seem so much bigger then Rochester. NY...Do you have any plans of ever working in a bigger city?

Are there any resources or even advice that have really helped you on your journey?

and everything will begin to fall into place.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

who I say I am, and I am where I’m supposed to be. Everyone’s journey is customized. The worse thing you can do is compare your progress with others. Focus on your task,

The last time I answered a question like this it all came to fruition…so here I go again. In five years I see myself moving my family to a bigger city to further a successful TV and radio career in a larger market. Possibly another baby. I just want to go as far as I can in this industry. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ SHIFT+CONTROL } “It all began with me just doing a friend a favor by cohosting her radio segment, and from there my love affair with being on-air developed.”









{ { SHIFT+CONTROL COVER STORY } } “My biggest success is that I never settled. I refuse to get complacent in my career.”



{ { SHIFT+CONTROL COVER STORY } } “Rochester is a great foundation, but I envision myself being bigger and better. I also believe that everything happens when it is supposed to.”

like this it all came to fruition… so here I go again. In five years I see myself moving my family to a bigger city to further a successful TV and radio career in a larger market. Possibly another baby. I just want to go as far as I can in this industry. 32


What is one thing our readers may not know about you? I use to be the biggest tomboy growing up. I played basketball in High School so I was most comfortable in baggy clothes and sneakers. It still amazes me how much of a 360 I did as far as my

image. But, even though my style has changed, my tomboy spirit is still very much alive. I can sip martinis with the girls and turn around and chug beers with the guys. They also say former tomboys make the best girlfriends.



Last year at this time, the National Susan B. Anthony Museum & House was at the start of an historic year, with the celebration of three anniversaries: the centennial of the 19th Amendment; the bicentennial of Susan B. Anthony’s birth, and the Anthony Museum’s 75th year. The myriad events of the year were going to be the culmination of years of planning. 2020 started with great promise, with representatives from the Anthony Museum marching with the 19th Amendment Centennial float in the Rose Bowl Parade in Pasadena. February brought Susan B, Anthony’s 200th birthday celebration, with record-breaking attendance at a dinner at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center which featured author and activist Tena Clark. Weeks later, Anthony Museum president and CEO, Deborah L. Hughes, was invited by the group Faith In Politics to march with John Lewis and other luminaries over the Pettis Bridge in Selma, Alabama. But as Deborah Hughes recently reflected, “This wasn’t the 2020 we had planned for, but it certainly proved to be an historic year.” In March, the brakes were put on all events as New York State shut down 36


because of the COVID-19. From the end of March to July, only an as-needed crew kept an eye on the campus of historically significant homes, while the rest of the staff worked remotely, as did much of the state’s workforce. Online lectures and events took the place of in-person, and although everyone missed the face-to-face interactions,

online events were available to reach a wider audience. When the Anthony Museum was reopened to the public at the beginning of July, new protocols were put into practice for the safety of visitors and of staff. Much of the guided tour of the National Landmark home and Visitor Center takes place outside, regardless of

weather. Tour sizes are carefully regulated, and advance online registration has become the norm. As the months went on and there was no end to the COVID pandemic in sight, it became clear that the 2021 Susan B. Anthony Birthday was not going to be an in-person dinner. Reaching out to partners in the community, the Anthony Museum developed an innovative take on the event. T h e Bi r t h d a y Celebration would go from an eveninglong dinner with keynote, to a half hour show, broadcast on television. The volunteers working on the event showed their mental agility and fortitude by pivoting and adopting a completely new model for the event. This year’s Susan B. Anthony Birthday Gala will be broadcast on Wednesday, February 10 at 7:00 pm on WROC-TV. The half hour show features Susan Zirinsky, acclaimed journalist and groundbreaking producer, now president and senior executive producer of CBS News. Like Anthony, she is described as “legendary” and “trailblazing.” With Anthony and Zirinsky in mind, and knowing that Zirinsky’s nickname











“This wasn’t the 2020 we had planned for, but it certainly proved to be an historic year.”

in the newsroom is “Z,” the theme of the Birthday Gala became A2Z, saluting the intersection between Susan B. Anthony as a public relations maven, author, and newspaper editor, and Susan Zirinsky, broadcast media icon. These two women understand the power and influence of the press. They never let a glass ceiling limit their work, their ascendance, or their impact as they open the world for others. The Gala broadcast presenting sponsor

is Kitty Van Bortel and the Van Bortel group of car dealerships. As in the past, the Gala serves as the major fundraising event for the Anthony Museum. Financial support for the Anthony Museum is all the more important at this time of reduced tourism and limited public access to this National Historic Landmark. Deborah Hughes, Anthony Museum trustees, and staff all hope that you will tune in on February 10th for an inspiring program that will be both memorable and entertaining. We all

can use a healthy dose of inspiration these days! Sidebar: Deborah L. Hughes – Her Round-about Route to Madison Street Although Deborah Hughes spent part of her childhood in Rochester NY, her family moved to Oregon when she was still young. She graduated from the University of Oregon with an undergraduate degree in world religion. She briefly returned to Rochester where ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021




“Since Hughes began her tenure as president in 2007, the Anthony Museum has completed a major phase of restoration, secured its Absolute Charter as a Museum, and dramatically grown attendance while staying true to its mission and vision.”

she received a Masters of Divinity from Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, with a focus on the Bible and Ancient Languages. Hughes became an ordained minister, and went on to serve on the pastoral staff of three urban churches in Michigan and New York. But in 2007, Hughes felt a calling in a different direction. Her interest in urban neighborhoods and building viable businesses in those neighborhoods brought her to apply for the position of president and CEO of the Anthony 42


Museum. She reasoned that through strengthening the presence of the Museum in this urban neighborhood, it would make the neighborhood stronger and more stable. Since Hughes began her tenure as president in 2007, the Anthony Museum has completed a major phase of restoration, secured its Absolute Charter as a Museum, and dramatically grown attendance while staying true to its mission and vision. Hughes has spearheaded innovative programming and events such as the award-winning “VoteTilla,” a weeklong event featuring

scholars and re-enactors who traveled in packet boats on the canal from Seneca Falls to Rochester for New York State’s Suffrage Centennial. Through it all, Hughes has been a strong advocate for human rights and equal opportunities for all, especially those who suffer discrimination based on gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, or economic circumstances. This advocacy meshes with the mission of the Anthony Museum to use the life and work of Susan B. Anthony as an inspiration and as a challenge for positive change.





Hey Rochester Women! My name is Heather Zajkowski. I am a 33 year old mom (aka momcologist) of two amazing little girls and I would like to share a chapter of my life story with you. A few months shy of a year ago was when we heard the worst news of our life. News that no parents ever thinks they will hear. “Addison has Cancer.”

her father. In that moment I lacked the capability to comprehend and retain any information. In January 2020 Addison started to have some pretty severe wrist pain. Just as sudden as it came on, it left. A week later, it was her elbow causing her pain. Pediatrician then refers us to

Even while living our worst nightmare amid the prime of a Global Pandemic we have so much to reflect upon and be grateful for. The “worst year ever” has brought some pretty amazing silver linings our way. Lets hit the rewind button and start from the beginning. In early April of 2020 we received a phone call from our daughter’s pediatric rheumatologist that we were being referred to a specialist in hematology/oncology. “What exactly is that?” I asked as my knees shook and I slowly made my way to the floor of my laundry room, isolating myself from my two little girls who were happily playing in the living room. “We think Addison may have some sort of blood cancer.” The world actually stopped. Everything went black and it felt like someone sucked the air from my lungs. My knees hit the as I tried to hold it together. I asked the doctor to please send everything he was about to say to me, in an email, so I could share it with 48


same wrist that was causing her issues. At this point, Orthopedics then refers us to a specialist in juvenile idiopathic rheumatoid arthritis. Hours long worth of appointments week after week, time taken from work and several blood draws later, here I am on the floor of my laundry room sobbing. Praying. Is this real life? Does my baby have cancer? How is this possible? Then she stops walking. Completely stops walking. Our first initial meeting with an oncologist, we were told that “these blood labs don’t scream leukemia, I don’t think she has cancer. I suggest we push the biopsy out a week or so.” We immediately called her pediatrician to share the news. His demeanor was not of what I expected. He insisted that the biopsy not be pushed further out. That it needs to be done as soon as possible. To have data to back up his theory we were given an oximeter to monitor her heart rate as she slept for a few days.

Orthopedics, X-rays were taken, Possible ‘bone healing activity’ was found and she was placed in a little hard pink cast for a few weeks. Cast is removed and we were back at orthopedics a week later for that

Her heart rate was in the 190’s when sleeping. Her 4-year-old big sister’s heart rate was 80 when sleeping. Biopsy was scheduled for April 16th and that is the day our whole world was turned completely upside down. The procedure was scheduled for 7am. That morning started with Addison screaming in pain. “My legs hurt so bad, my legs, my legs, mama please make it stop!” We get to the hospital; the bone marrow biopsy is performed, and the sample was immediately sent to the lab for stat




“Ev pri reflec has

ven while living our worst nightmare amid the ime of a Global Pandemic we have so much to ct upon and be grateful for. The “worst year ever” brought some pretty amazing silver linings our way.”






“We think Addison may have some sort of blood cancer.” The world actually stopped. Everything went black and it felt like someone sucked the air from my lungs.”

results. Because of COVID-19, only one parent was allowed at the hospital for the procedure. When she woke up from anesthesia, a member of the oncology team came into the room and with sad eyes proceeds to tell me the news that our child does indeed have blood cancer. B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia to be exact. In addition to this news, I was told we were being admitted to Golisano children’s hospital for the next 28 days, effective i m m e d i a t e l y. Treatment would begin now and would be a total of 2 and 1/3 years long. To top it off, only one parent is allowed to be with the child the entire stay. No switching. This meant that my four-year-old at home, was about to go a month without seeing her mom & little sister. This meant that my sick baby was going to go a month without seeing her dad and sister. Dad took care of big sister and held down the home front while mom took care of little sister at the hospital. Two weeks before diagnosis, I was laid off from my executive committee position of HR Manager for the Hotel I was working at. Everything happens for a reason. Being laid off sucks. Pediatric

Cancer sucks! But, finding the silver linings has got me through and kept me tough. I did not have to worry about the pressures of a career while getting my child well. We found creative ways to keep in touch and see each other while we were inpatient. From daddy and Charlotte pulling up to the roof top to wave at us and Grandma making signs so big we could read them all the way up from our room window. We made

it work. We did what we had to do, and we got through those 28 days. This period of treatment is called Induction. She was on several chemotherapy drugs to kill the leukemia cells in her body and steroids. She gained a lot of weight on these steroids it affected her in many other ways. She was mad, emotional and hungry all the time. When we got home, this was hard for her older sister to comprehend. Why was Addison being

allowed to act this way without normal repercussions? Why did Addison look differently now? It was a lot on our family, and it took some time to settle into a new routine. It felt as if overnight I went from a HR Manager, working mom to a stay-athome mom, cancer caregiver and home schoolteacher. Human beings are amazing in the fact that they can adapt and overcome obstacles. I never signed up for this, but this is what my life is now. Nothing is ever permanent, and it won’t be this way forever, but for now this is the way it is, and I shall own it. Many people have reached out and said things like “You’re an inspiration! You’re so strong, I could never do what you do!” I can assure you this, yes you could. If you love your children, you will stop at nothing to keep them alive, well and thriving. Addison is now in the Maintenance portion of her treatment protocol. This means less hospital visits but more medication at home. She will ring the cancer bell in June of 2022. We were handpicked to be these little girl’s parents. We have the strength to ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ A MOTHER’S WORDS } “She will ring the cancer bell in June of 2022. We were handpicked to be these little girl’s parents. We have the strength to persevere and keep them thriving.”

persevere and keep them thriving. It is the most privileged duty that I have ever had the opportunity of. One thing being a parent of a child with cancer has taught me is to not sweat the small stuff. Seriously, just don’t. Save your energy for the things that really matter. Our 54


family has gone through some tough stuff this year but other families have it worse. Someone always has it worse. Be grateful for all of life’s big and small blessings and be present always with your loved ones. Life is a gift and ever

so often is taken for granted. I hope that this chapter in our story can shed some light on that. Thanks for reading along and thank you for lifting me up and giving me the courage to keep on keeping’ on!






Everyone right about now just wants to kick this year down to the ground, and I’m with you! With 2021 within our reach, that eagerness of starting fresh feels more real than ever. However, the hope that things will resume somewhat like how they used to be, in many ways feels like a dream.

are wiser. You are stronger. You are ready. You know what you want. You know what you need to get by. You know who you love, and who

Go ahead and get charged up! Hope and expectation are exactly the motivation we need to pull us up from the mud right now.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

We are all dirty, pissed and exhausted and ready to kick this next year’s ass. WHY? Because this last one was a difficult one on every level, and YOU Survived! No matter what, we’ve already proven ourselves in every possible way because:

loves you. You know who is there.

Not only did you survive, but you

And because of all this... you are


These are ALL incredible accomplishments and feats to overcome. SO, congratulations and cheers to US! Now it’s up to all of us to do this next year right. Now more than ever we need to support one another as we all try to keep innovative and pushing forward throughout such turbulent times. Every little bit helps, and we promise to to do our part in helping draw more attention to each business. We wish you continued success on your venture forward, and hope to see you in life again soon.

Realism will tell you that we still have a few more hurdles, and a long road ahead of us. Optimism will tell you that help is on the way, and that we are ready to strong hold and continue to push our way forward.


more in touch with you and your emotions.

Amanda Ashley Writer/Host/Producer w w w . amandaashleymusic@ 585.469.6436










In 2000 I was at a women’s event and a friend, Diane Jackson, shared God’s heart with me about doing ministry for women and it would be called The Esther Project. I noted it in the cover of my Bible and just tucked it away in my heart. It really began to take more shape in 2009 when my pastor, Steve Edlin preached a sermon challenging us to seek God for the strategies to see the dreams that He has given us come to life! I had a job at a school off of Joseph Avenue and every day when I would drive to work I would think about this scripture that talks about rebuilding the waste places. I would drive down Joseph Avenue looking at house after house, building after building and just dream about purchasing those houses and refurbishing them and providing affordable housing. That day I just wrote it all down in my journal and pretty soon things began to happen! My husband and I have always had a place in our hearts for women going through tough times. Many years ago we had a friend who was a single mom, and she was struggling without a car. She would get up extra early to take a bus in inclement weather to get her daughter to daycare and then get herself to work. At that time we had 2 vehicles so we just knew it

was the right thing to do and so we gave her one of those cars. For years we have taken people into our home who were in a housing transition. Some would stay a week, a month and even several months. We just wanted to be an answer to a problem. We did what the scriptures noted about blessing widows and orphans. Here we are now 20 years

later seeing this word be fulfilled. God literally dropped this 2 family abandoned house in our laps. It was an open door full of favor and blessing. I am honored to get to do this... it has been challenging....and definitely stretching. We literally had to strip the house down, cleaning out a ton of excess garbage. Once we did that we could see we were looking at a huge project. We decided not to let that

intimidate us. We made a decision that we would just take it one day at a time and get the work done. My husband hired several young men right in the neighborhood to help. Two of my husband’s previous students from UPrep decided to join him and committed to volunteering for several huge projects. Pretty soon we had a much needed new front door, front stairs, glass block basement windows, a new side door, new inserts in the chimney and the entire electric box in the basement was rewired! There is still a need for a new roof this coming spring and once that is completed we are projecting an opening mid summer! Poverty in the City of Rochester is no secret. Even though my house is not open we have been working in the trenches with men and women throughout the region. From Community Thanksgiving Dinners to providing furniture for women returning home from incarceration the opportunities to assist in the community are endless. Over the past several years we have been able to partner with over 20 different shelters and agencies who are supporting homeless women. The goal has been to create solid partnerships with these agencies to create a feed for ladies to enter The Esther House. Then along came the shut down, but that did not halt poverty. There was still a need in our community ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ FOR A GOOD CAUSE } “Poverty in the City of Rochester is no secret. Even though my house is not open we have been working in the trenches with men and women throughout the region.�

so we just got to work. We started out with gathering the community together for 3 Drive by Baby Showers. If you could have seen the faces of the pregnant moms as we rolled up to their surprise with our cars all decorated toting everything from diapers to formula! Then just as fall was coming to an end the weather held up for us to have the first ever Pandemic Purse Project. We served over 15 agencies and collected almost 62


700 purses filled with toiletries and necessities for women. We have been busy. Once The Esther House is open we will be working with agencies to provide transitional housing. Now we assist with furniture, clothing, job searches and resume writing. This last month has been filled with grassroots work raising funds keeping women from evictions and food on the table. Just as 2020

was winding down we became a nonprofit corporation. 2021 is gonna be an amazing year! We firmly believe that together we can do great things in our community. Stay tuned as we bring this amazing vision to life!


MISSION To provide transitional housing for women coming out of shelters who do not have the resources to secure safe, clean and affordable housing.

FIGHTING AGAINST POVERTY IN OUR CITY Coaching Google Training Resume Writing Workshops

CONNECT TO SUPPORT (585)851-8195 @TheEstherProject1

“Filling in the gap from the shelter to home”



If you live in Rochester and follow any news platform regarding community issues or local politics, you know the name Rachel Barnhart. RWO decided to reach out to Rachel and see if she would be willing sit down with us. Rachel was happy to chat. Born and raised in Rochester’s 10th ward into a loving family, her mother and father were city school teachers. She attended John Marshall High School where she was a good student and on the swim team. Barnhart worked at the Driving Park Wegman’s during her high school years and there she had her first real upclose and personal look at inequality in society. She came to know the people who shopped there and became aware of their struggles. Among other things Rachel talked about during her time at Wegmans, she mentioned noticing people having to use food stamps (now known as SNAP) and try to stretch the food until the next month. “That experience probably shaped who I am today”. Rachel told RWO her hoped-for career was to be a journalist. She 66


shared a story with us. During her junior year at Marshall, she was suspended twice. Rachel was writing an underground newspaper raising matters the administration did not want to talk about; teen pregnancy, the high number of suspensions and the dropout rate amongst other things. The superintendent suspended her

once, and later again, after it was discovered she had continued writing the small publication. This wouldn’t be the last time that she would find herself on the correct side of the issues and the wrong side of the fence. After college she did go on to become a journalist. She worked in that profession for 18 years. Her beat

included reporting on people across the board, including government officials and people who referred to themselves as community leaders. She noticed that “Everyone had their own version of the truth and facts did not seem to matter. I felt like I kept repeating these stories over and over again and the answers were always the same. Nothing ever changed and the problems still existed.” After years of this, she said, “I felt like I hit wall”. She decided she was going to be an agent for change herself. Rather than reporting the news, she wanted to be the positive news for change. She decided to become involved in politics. Her road to political office was not a smooth one. She did not win her first bid for office. Some people might say she is controversial. She has been criticized. She accepts all that as part of the job. She asks tough questions, questions that most others do not and will not. But now Rachel is a local elected official, a Monroe County Legislator. Appointed to the position initially and then elected to the office. A few years ago, she raised hackles with a question about the funding











SHIFT+CONTROL { {WOMEN IN POLITICS} } “If people aren’t engaged in government, it’s our fault, not theirs.”

for Rochester’s Jazz Fest. The Festival is privately run and profits go to private promoters. There is substantial government and business funding. She wanted to know why local government helped pay for the festival and how much money the promoters made from it. Questioning one of Rochester’s sacred cows did not win a lot of friends. The media was tough on her. But she felt it was not only a legitimate question, but one that needed to be asked. She never did get a straight answer, but the next year, the city did not fund the Festival with money. It announced publicly a donation of police presence, firemen and garbage collection as a gift in kind. At least we knew at some level where some of the city money was going. Rachel still ask’s those tough questions as an elected official. Recently she fought, unsuccessfully, the appointment of six new people to the Board of Elections, appointments that wound up costing our County more than $500,000. She has tried to control fees that food delivery services charge restaurants for take-out orders. Those fees can 70


be as high as 30% of the cost of the order, leaving restaurants with little to no profit. According to a press release, Rachel said “(R)estaurants are staring down the side of a cliff”.

When asked what else she is doing, she told us she works for a national nonprofit organization that fights against corruption in government, including against political gerrymandering and

campaign finance corruption. She also worked with others to provide updated Mi-Fi devices for Rochester city school children to access remote learning. Today, Rachel still lives in the city she loves so much. It is not uncommon to see Rachel and her furry beloved four-legged rescued companion Penny, walking through their neighborhood. She is known to her neighbors and she knows all of them. This past Halloween, she noticed she had no trick or treaters and decided to go to them. She and Penny went from home to home in her neighborhood making sure she was socially distant and masked delivering the candy herself. Rachel loves her work. She loves being involved in the moving parts of our local government. Asked to give us a final thought she said “If people aren’t engaged in government, it’s our fault, not theirs”.









Hello, I pray the new year brought good health and love to you! Welcome to the first edition of “Truth Tea.” Are you an entrepreneur trying to flourish in a dark and dis‐ mal environment? Does feelings of doubt and unbelief in your dreams seem to plague your every thought? Have you worked hard on your goals and businesses only to have your efforts trampled upon by the elephants of the unknown? Don’t despair because with God you can succeed! With the recent events plaguing our world today, businesses closing, and people losing jobs at enormous rates, you may wonder how can I survive and keep my faith through it all?

God’s word tells us to sow in famine. Sounds crazy? The Word of God explains in Luke 6:38 that when you give it will be given unto you by good measure. How much more significant when you don’t have much and still decide on being a giver? If you take what you have that’s little and help another in need, your sowing in famine which will in turn cause you spiritually to receive God’s blessing in return. God honors giving on any level.

A pandemic is a famine. Famine means being void of an essential or essentials to sustain life. Many people who built their businesses and companies on seeds of hope and faith are now searching for answers to what’s next? We must keep our faith no matter what the outcome. The enemy comes to kill, steal, and destroy. He uses situations to discourage us and weaken our faith in God when things happen that we can’t explain. The one thing I’ve learned from my own experiences is that the quickest way to change your current situation is by getting your mind off yourself and thinking about how you can be a blessing to someone else. God can bless you even during a time when it looks like there could be no possible way to be blessed!

However, giving doesn’t always mean money. It could be anything that you have that may help another especially in your “own” time of need. I emphasize own because when we operate in this way, we are operating in love instead of selfishness which sets the spiritual course of a harvest coming back to you. It’s the spiritual law of sowing and reaping. You never know how God will bless you when you operate selflessly. We live in a very selfish world today where people only

think of themselves and not others. They often make decisions based on how it will benefit them but not really giving with an attitude of a giver from the heart. God sees the hidden motives of the heart. Our harvest will be given by the conditions of our hearts whether pure or impure. Why not challenge yourself today, and reach within your heart to see how you can bless someone regardless of your own situ‐ ation and watch how God shows up and shows out for you! Many times we say to ourselves “I have a lot on my plate, don’t have time to worry about anyone else!” Listen, no one is saying to worry about anything. God is saying take me at my Word. In Mark 12:4144 talks about the widow’s mite. A story of a genuine heart of love and respect for your fellow man. A man of God came to visit the woman who was starving and was scarce of food. She had only a small portion to share with her child and she knew that after eating that last meal there would be nothing left. She was a kind woman who began to offer her last meal for her guest, because she had nothing else to offer. She knew that she and her child needed to eat and was tremendously hungry and could not afford to give away what little she had left. Instead, she gave it to her guest and because she chose to honor someone else in her time of gigantic need, God blessed her abundantly in return and she ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ TRUTH TEA WITH TALENA}SKYE } { SHIFT+CONTROL “The one thing I’ve learned from my own experiences is that the quickest way to change your current situation is by getting your mind off yourself and thinking about how you can be a blessing to someone else.”

and her child never starved again. I truly love that story; it blesses me every time I hear it. Which is why I am sharing with you to encourage yourself to always be a cheerful giver from the heart. What would have happened if she gave grudgingly? Just doing it because she felt obligated, hating the fact that she gave what she needed for herself? She wouldn’t have received the same harvest. Instead she humbly gave even though it was hard, and was blessed in return. God loves a cheerful giver-2 Corinthians 9:7. Sharing a bit of my testimony, I have had to apply the same principle in my life during the midst of the pandemic. When news hit that we would be on lockdown due to the Covid 19 situation, many concerns grew as I had to close my business and work from home. That was a very hard decision to accept. I just received a new partnership at a new location to help bring new children and families to a current business which was a wonderful opportunity for me as a early childhood teacher. Having to work from home providing kids classes online has been a challenge waiting for enrollment due to the uncertainty of the virtual class experience. I prayed and asked God to show me what to do during this time of drought happening and waited patiently for His reply. During that time, a situation presented itself that needed my financial assistance and 74


without knowing what was around the corner financially for me, I was prompted to make a difference in that situation. Now void of a significant amount of my savings I desperately needed, I remembered the widow’s mite. Well, I knew the story but how many times we hear a message and when it’s staring us in the face to act on it, you start to question your motives and whether you heard from God. That questioning comes from the uncertainty of your future. You will know when you hear from God because whatever he tells you to do will align with His Word. We should never allow ourselves to get in a place where we are giving place to anxiety, doubt or unbelief which are cousins of fear. I prayed and kept my mind on God’s Word and trusted Him in this situation because His Word says in Phillipians 4:19...”My God shall supply all my needs according to His riches and glory in Christ Jesus” which helped to remove the uncertainty I felt. He showed me His goodness in that situation by opening the door to a wonderful opportunity to continue teaching online among many others during my time of great need. When my mom died 4 years ago, I wrote a song as a tribute to her going home to be with the Lord. The song is titled “Mama” featuring my beautiful sister in Christ Bernadette “Be Cleare Allen ‘’ who lost her mom a year later and a day before mine.

Discussing the mission for the song with “Be”, I remember us sharing our personal stories of grief and how we were affected by losing our moms. Realizing how God kept us and strengthened us through our struggle we found it in our hearts to help others with our story. The grief of believing someone will be with you for a time and having that snatched away unexpectedly can really mess you up if you don’t trust God for strength! I remember her mentioning how she didn’t feel like singing as much when her mom passed and I had similar feelings of not going forward in my endeavors because I...we...were devastated by grief to say the least. I am so grateful for this project because it gave us new life and resurrected our fire to pursue the gifts God put in each of us. I received a call recently that my song “Mama” that I submitted a year ago to a music campaign was selected and from that call, opened the door to com‐ plete the video for the song as well as another video, and an upcoming interview and magazine feature for my project. Who’s shooting music videos in a pandemic? Lol!! I am so thankful for God’s goodness and mercy. God can do amazing things for you if you trust His Word to provide. Don’t be discouraged by the recent world events. God will keep you in His care if you just hold on to your faith in Him.

{ TRUTH TEA WITH TALENA }SKYE } { SHIFT+CONTROL “With the recent events plaguing our world today, businesses closing, and people losing jobs at enormous rates, you may wonder how can I survive and keep my faith through it all? ”


Be Cleare Allen is doing some amazing things and has a new podcast and music project. Please check out my feature on her recent podcast “Episode 9” as I discuss the making of “Mama”. Her new song titled “Her” is available now where music is sold. One of my favorite songs that will leave you teary eyed as well as encouraged, is “Midnight” many times I felt down that song lifted my spirit.

beautiful ministry and journey at also check her out on Instagram @beclearallen

You can learn more about her

Looking for virtual infant music classes?


To learn more about my music journey, visit: and follow me on Instagram @talenaskye Learn about my community literacy club and enrichment classes: www.

Visit: *Official Video-Mama-Talena Skye feat Be Cleare Allen video available now on YouTube filmed by Stephen Council @stephencouncil -Instagram Talena Skye photos by Eugene Hardin @35mmsee-Instgram







I started Gypsy Freedom with a mission of creating a community of free spirited women whose style reflects their values. During my engineering career, I saw firsthand the damaging effects of traditional manufacturing processes. This sparked a personal effort to be a more conscious consumer. As a part of this effort, I started searching for more ethical apparel. Often, I found it difficult to find ethically produced clothing that was fashion forward. Gypsy Freedom was born in an effort to show that style and sustainability are not mutually exclusive. During my corporate career I always imagined a retirement that included opening a fashion boutique. As much as I dreamed of owning a fashion boutique I thought that doing what I loved was a thing of the future and the idea of starting a business seemed as if it was decades away. In 2019, during the fifteenth year of my corporate engineering career, I found myself lost in a cycle of stress and monotony. With the support of my husband, I decided that I grew as much as I could in my corporate career and was ready to step out into the large and unknown landscape of entrepreneurship. I built a plan that included starting small and testing the market as a pop-up

shop. Using skills that I’d implemented throughout all of my years working for global corporations I developed a strategy that I felt confident in launching. I initially operated Gypsy Freedom out of my home. I sought out opportunities to set up pop-up shops in other brick and mortar locations. These pop-up

shops helped me to adjust the parts of my business plan that required more marketing and financial input. As I made traction with my pop-up shops my momentum was eventually halted in 2020 as businesses started to close their doors; many of them for good. With locations closing and limiting their capacity, I was no longer able to get in front of customers to introduce and grow Gypsy Freedom.

Discouraged, I considered pausing my plans for Gypsy Freedom until the uncertainty of the pandemic was past us. However, the customer base that I obtained as an online boutique continued to grow, forcing me to realize that the need for Gypsy Freedom still existed. I brainstormed ideas to translate my pop up shop model into the new virtual reality that we were forced into as the global pandemic threatened the rest of 2020. I started with an experimental live shopping event which has become our month Sip & Shop. The concept was simple, over cocktails and guest speakers I would showcase and discuss new arrivals with a virtual audience. The sip and shops were meant to be an opportunity to continue the work that I started to introduce Gypsy Freedom and sustainable fashion concepts to women in upstate and central NY. What happened next both surprised and scared me. Women from all over the country were learning about Gypsy Freedom through the reach of our recorded sip and shops. Local women became loyal clients who were searching for opportunities to easily find brands that aligned with their values. With growing interest in my curated collections, I decided that it ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ FASHION FORWARD } “I started Gypsy Freedom with a mission of creating a community of free spirited women whose style reflects their values.”

was time to set my fear of the unknown aside and open a brick and mortar to further accommodate the growth of Gypsy Freedom. In August, 2020, the Gypsy Freedom showroom was open to the public. I decided to open in downtown Syracuse since the pop ups that I previously held there were the most successful. In addition, as a Syracuse University graduate and dedicated member of the Syracuse, NY community I have a special connection with Syracuse and feel a responsibility to contribute to the 82


economic growth of our city. The Covid-19 pandemic has caused Gypsy Freedom’s first year to be a little different than anticipated. In the midst of all of the change and pivoting throughout the pandemic, my goals have remained the same: To promote fashion as an artform, to spread awareness on the importance of sustainable clothing for people and the planet, and to cultivate a community of supportive women who feel free to express their truest selves.

I know that my future will always be a blank page for me to write. However, if 2020 has taught me anything, it was to learn how to roll with the punches even while afraid and to ultimately stay innovative. Playful and experimental innovation requires the humility and confidence in knowing that your ideas will not always work. Some of your ideas and “pivots” will flop and you will learn from them, iterate, and try again in a different way. The key is to remember why you started this cycle in the first place and to use that energy to fuel you into your next playful idea.



Scalp micropigmentation for women is a rapidly-growing service. Most of us will not look at a bald man twice if he passes us in the street unless he is “The Rock.” If it was a woman, then it becomes a damn near spectacle. Globally, and in the US, hair loss is widely accepted in men, even though women account for 40% of all hair loss victims in the latter. According to Harvard Medical School, about a third of hair loss in women experience hair loss (alopecia) at some point in their lives; for postmenopausal women, as many as two-thirds suffer from thinning hair or bald spots. Almost thirty million in the United States are going through some form of hair loss. Indubitably, hair loss in women has a more considerable impact than in men because it’s not a socially acceptable occurrence. Female hair loss can be detrimental to a woman’s emotional health and subsequent quality of life. So, I decided to contact Jerod Schoonmaker, owner of Scalp NY and Scalp International for some advice and recommedations on my thinning hair due to over the top stress levels, hormones and being in a pre menopausal time in my life. Jerod recommended doing a 3 step process called scalp micropigmentation density procedure. 84


Right from the very first procedure, the result was amazing, and made me feel so much more confident about myself. It took about 2.5 hours for the first round, and was actually not as bad as I thought it would be. A couple tender areas made me cringe a little bit, but overall it was alot less painful then getting a tattoo. Besides, Jerod made me feel completely comfortable answering all of my questions and concerns and telling me what was going on every step of the way. He may

have told a few jokes here and there to keep me entertained as well. Female hair loss, as in men, arises from androgenetic alopecia, or female (or male) pattern hair loss. In women, androgenetic alopecia initiates with slow thinning hair at the part line, pursued by widespread hair loss from the crown. That said, women rarely have receding

hairlines, and they hardly go bald. This density technique not only makes it look like my hair is thicker and darker, but covers the “grey” areas at my root so it fools the eye into thinking its not time for that root touch up so quickly. This is a huge deal for me as I have to go get my hair colored every 2.5 to 3 weeks because underneath the beautiful color from Salon Bella Vita, my hair is actually totally grey. Not a pretty salt and pepper like some, but a very see through grey that ages me 40years. Scientifically, clinicians d e p l oy t h e Lu d w i g Classification to lend a description to female pattern hair loss. Type I is minimal thinning hair that hairstyling techniques can disguise. Type II causes diminished volume and a noticeable expansion of the mid-line part. Type III causes diffused thinning hair, with a seethrough countenance of the crown. Hair loss in women can be because of medical conditions (alopecia areata and alopecia totalis), medications, and physical or emotional stress. Should you notice atypical hair loss of any kind, make sure to consult your primary caregiver or a dermatologist to determine the cause and hair loss treatment. While hair loss in women is frustrating, neoteric years have seen an increase in resources for dealing with the difficulties. One such resource is scalp micropigmentation (SMP) or




{ DISHING WITH THE DIVA } “It makes it look like you have a full head of hair, like microblading for womens eyebrows.”

Scalp micropigmentation is a procedure that deploys a stippling pattern tattoo that imitates hair follicles cut close to the scalp. As a relatively novel technique, scalp micropigmentation can substantially address the cosmetic issues that arise from the hair loss conditions mentioned at the outset. The tattoo industry has undergone a cultural augmentation since 2008, which made scalp micropigmentation (SMP) an increasingly socially acceptable hair loss solution for tackling apropos scalp and hair challenges.

Scalp micropigmentation treatment uses microneedles that add a layer of pigment dots on your scalp like getting a tattoo. The procedures customarily happen over three sessions. That said, there is some variation that is dependent on your hair loss severity, the style you desire, and other elements that come into play. You should know, a scalp micro pigment is a small inked orifice made by the electronic needles. The technicality of micropigmentation

Some of the benefits include: - It makes it look like you have a full head of hair, like microblading for womens eyebrows -Excellent natural-looking side photo profiles of your hairline -It camouflages alopecia symptoms in perpetuity, whether they are severe or recurrent -It covers scars from a hair transplant or FUE surgery -It helps in concealing birthmarks or burn or accident-related scars - It combines well with a hair transplant to offer additional density - Lifestyle change- increase in confidence and positive life choices



treatments means that it must be performed by specially and highly trained technicians. During the procedure, the skin gets a small wound when each ink dot forms. The formed scab eventually will fall away, which reduces some of the original pigment in your head. And no doubt, your immune system will attack the pigments, causing them to shrink and fade over time. Notably, this gradual disappearing of micropigmentation on scalp sections is different for each

person. Still, it does necessitate the need for more treatments to achieve the required shade of the head. Depending on your head, treatment sessions will involve different pigmentation shades while paying attention to hair color. Undoubtedly, distinct shades are necessary for your head to make some pigment shades to stand out from other groups. Usually, lighter pigments are the first to be applied, while the follow-up sessions deposit darker shades to create the impression of a full head of hair. I honestly couln’t recommend Jerod more highly. He is extremely professional, incredibly talented and an expert in his field. You are in good hands with him. The best part is not only do you feel amazing and more self confident after even the first treatment, but once you are done with your 3 part treatment series, you probably won’t have to come back for 5-7 years for a touch up! Feel free to contact his at www.scalpny. com to learn more about everything he offers for both men and women and set up your free consultation to see if this is the right fit for you. Plus, you can check out our LIVE feeds on facebook at Rochester Woman Online to see Jerod in action doing scalp micropigmentation on me.











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2021 It’s Time to Get Your Badass Self in Shape with a 10 Day Reset! No matter how much I tell you that your health matters you have to make the intrinsically motivated decision to change your life and do something new! Step outside of the behaviors and habits you are used to and begin to create a new path with a renewed body.

hardship? Has struggle changed your motivation? As we enter the New Year 2021, the same old pending thoughts sneaks up on most women, “How am I going to make time for myself ”? “How am I going to make

Decide to RESET! Consider yourself a badass getting ready to claim your space in the world.

Haven’t you had enough? Of the feelings of powerlessness over your health and body. Well, you deserve more!

State to yourself right now “I deserve!” “I am worthy!” Make it real and authentic. Can you feel deserving? Or are you numbed out by pain and 92


I felt as if I had a balloon in my belly. I was fatigued and exhausted. But I always have faith that the right product, system or program can appear! Funny thing is I was not sure where I would find the answers! Yet, they were right in front of me! It was my business collaborator, Abby, who had the answer. We had teamed up to build a conference together, but found ourselves on hold in the pandemic and teaching leadership online. Abby had tried to invite me prior to a Covid-19 to a Seacret team gathering and I declined. It was not until I suffered a serious burn on my hand that I woke up to the power of Seacret Direct products!

Knowledge is power and diving into this article you may feel inspired to get your badass self in shape, take this year to lock in your power!

I am here to tell you….YOU deserve more.

found myself lost in my own body, my hormones were out of control, my gym workouts had come to a screeching halt, and I found myself slipping into a body I didn’t want or desire. I needed a solution fast!

this my year for reclaiming my body”? Well, here it is! It’s time to RESET and say “I have neglected myself enough! Time for ME”!! I have been where you are. In fact, 2020 was increasingly hard! Hitting 50 in the midst of the pandemic I

Abby said, “I will send you the cuticle oil for your burn. The minerals from the Dead Sea will help you.” For weeks, still suffering with my weight and fatigue, I sat at the computer and used the cuticle oil on my burned hand. It was that small product that opened me up. I was hooked!




“Knowledge is power and diving into this article you may feel inspired to get your badass self in shape, take this year to lock in your power! �

{ NEW YEAR NEW YOU } “I am 8 months into the Life By Seacret system and I am so excited to share it with you! ”

And the solution to my weight was right there with it. AND it isn’t a traditional weight loss plan of restricted calories and strict meals. The program completely supports what we teach in our transformational SuperCORE Fit program. Remove toxins and support the foundational elements of the body and you will receive results. I have been on the Life by Seacret wellness product for 7 months and I feel like with our new program SuperCORE Fit Coaching we have quite a program. Easy to follow, classes done from a computer at home, and accessible for anyone at any level. Our foundational wellness system is a power packed way to recover your health, power up your energy, and burn through fat! So how does it work? If you want to reclaim your health let’s start with RESET! STEP 1: RECOVERY (Hint: You get a free bottle of Recovery -R with yoru Reset pack!) For most of us we have lost control of our health. Recovery does just as it says it recovers your health from the effects of stress, tension and toxins. The gentle formula of molecular hydrogen is amazing for reclaiming your health by eliminating the bad guys, a powerful antioxidant! STEP 2: OXYGEN Greens, the formula we all need! The greens are designed to give you the 96


dark green nutrients that are packed with oxygen and vitally important for energy and health. Pump up your power like Popeye! The greens are the vital life force you need to supercharge your health! STEP 3: ALKALIZE Alkalinity is key. Fat is more prominent in an acidic environment. The more acidic your body the harder it becomes to sleep, rest and maintain good health plus, lose weight. The Booster- B capsules help alkalize the body for optimum function.

you will begin to feel amazing!! Give your body what it needs and your body will respond with positive results! I am 8 months into the Life By Seacret system and I am so excited to share it with you! We have the 10 Day Reset Program designed for you PLUS online SuperCORE Fit classes Mon-Fri all from your home and strats in a chair. We meet you where you are, right now!

Build a more alkaline system!

Join us for Free Wellness Calls every Tuesday 5pm EST www.supercorefit. com/fitness-classes


Or contact Dr. Pam Denton for a Wellness Consultation www.

Grab a protein shake and make sure you are absorbing the right nutrients to support fat loss and detoxification. Plant protein is easy to absorb and low in calories. STEP 5: CURB THE CRAVINGS By supporting the body with superfoods and energy you will quickly eliminate craving low nutrient foods. Your body knows! Once the vital life force is on you will want to naturally reach for better foods. So here it is, simple products with a simple system to reset your health! Time, dedication, support and movement will get you supercharged. And with the 10 Day Reset Program

Join us as a business builder and become a SuperCORE Coach 2021!







{ I AM... }


If you would’ve told me sixteen years ago, I’d be married to my high school sweetheart, two degrees, two children, a dog, a Social Worker, Podcaster, Mentor, Radio Personality, and Brand Ambassador, I probably would’ve looked at you like you were crazy and completely ignored the words that parted your mouth. See, sixteen years ago is when my life ended and began with purpose. Sixteen years ago, I was a junior in high school and discovered I was pregnant. How can I be pregnant? I was just a young girl in love with this boy who swept me right off my feet. You know- like in the fairytales growing up, the girl who falls in love with her prince. I didn’t consider the risky behaviors I participated in because I was somewhere in the clouds exploring and having fun. Having parents who were Believers, just about everything other than eating Ramen noodles was considered forbidden in the eyes of an exploring teenager. I felt like I couldn’t do anything, which led my curiosity to explore risky behaviors. Culturally, I couldn’t have a boyfriend because they were a distraction. However, I wasn’t educated on how to prevent them from being a distraction. Typically, what is interesting to sixteen-year-olds? Despite how committed my parents were in Christ, I wasn’t. Yet some Believers cultural norms believed I wasn’t supposed to be a Black, 16-year-old pregnant in high school. Contrary, there I was, a sixteen-year-old, an Honor roll student, exploring colleges, and the “perfect child” according to

my daddy, pregnant. How could my boyfriend at the time (husband now) and I be so surprised when we knew what we were doing? Our next choices were, when are we going to tell our parents. Afraid to inform my parents, not only am I pregnant, but I was having sex. Oh my! My heart raced faster than a plane at taking off. We allowed months to bypass before telling them. There were times I would run the water so they couldn’t hear me vomiting in the bathroom. I was a tomboy, so the Lakers jersey was worn just about daily until we could no longer hide it. There we were, telling our parents their babies were expecting a baby. I watched their look of disappointment on their face as if I was watching the ping pong game. Left-right-left-right. Disappointment (left), hurt (right), responsibilities (left), accountability (right), guilt (left), shame (right), repeated again and again. As my belly grew, the shame grew. People would look at me with disgust. I recall being on an elevator a Black woman asked me how far along I was. I responded to her I am seven months. She replied, wow, you just threw your life away. Not only did I have anxiety about being a child bringing another child into this world, but it also wasn’t until then, I began to question how I can achieve goals. According to generational and cultural norms, I was a statistic. I threw my life away. I was going to be on the system. I was going to have multiple “baby dads” and be a “dropout.” I lost hope. It was my mother who

said; you are going to take care of this baby. You will finish high school, she added. I never knew how having fun and being in love can drastically change your life. It wasn’t until after we birthed our daughter on August 17th, 2005 I realized she was what I needed. I felt a love I never thought I could ever feel. As I birthed her, she birthed purpose in me. I spent the next years proving to society that I wasn’t going to be that girl. Unfortunately, I was taught not to become a statistic but not educated on overcoming the barriers as a statistic. I recall starting my senior year homeschooled. When I returned to high school, my senior year of life became real. I had to prepare bottles, pack clothes, drop off our infant before school, do homework, work part-time, say the least, and repeat daily. I didn’t have time for myself. I needed to accomplish a goal. At that time, my only goal was to receive my high school diploma. I recall telling my sister, all I want is my high school diploma. My senior year was extremely challenging. The support from my family allowed me to receive my high school diploma in 2006. I recall exiting the stage, clapping my hands while walking to our daughter. I hugged her tightly and told my family, that’s it, I’m done. I didn’t want to pursue anything else. I did what they didn’t think I was going to do. Life began. I recall bringing my daughter to appointments or the store with me. People would stop and say, Omg! She’s so beautiful, how old is she? I will tell them her age; their response, oh sweetie, ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ I AM... } “According to generational and cultural norms, I was a statistic. I threw my life away. I was going to be on the system. I was going to have multiple “baby dads” and be a “dropout.”

you look too young to be having a baby. Ashamed, I never knew how to respond; I would lie about my age. I was too young, but why did they have to continue reminding me. Therefore, I continued my lie. I continued lying about my age and the age I had her. For some reason, abusing my pride and dignity felt better than telling them the truth. It was a disgusting feeling I felt inside after admitting to strangers the obvious. Most of that feeling was the remembrance of the shame. Like why people refused to accept it and move on? It wasn’t as if I was seeking support from them. Why did they force the shame on me? Why did they have to ask the question? In 2009, my daughter’s father and I got married. Soon after, we were pregnant with our boy. The joy and support were overwhelming. I guess the major difference is that we were older and we were married. Somewhat close to the “right” way, I guess. Believers accepted pregnancy after marriage, so the love we felt was indescribable, at the same time for me, hurtful. Why couldn’t I have received this during my first experience? I understood the decisions we made, but why did it feel like a nine monthly punishment instead of celebrating life? I recall my sister telling me she was going to Monroe Community College. She attempted to encourage me to attend college with her. I told her she was crazy. We’re two years apart and do everything together, but this one, absolutely not. I reminded her, 104


“I did what they thought I wasn’t going to do. I have a high school diploma. I’m done.” A year passed. I worked as a Home Health Aide, CNA, & Direct Support Staff. I was missing something. I wasn’t fulfilled. My sister encouraged me to attend Monroe Community College with her again for the Spring. Of course, I was hesitant. Well, she convinced me well enough to start and finish. I received my Associates in Human Service and began working with Youth. I urged a passion to give back. I wanted to be the adult I wish I had as a teenager. As I expanded with the Youth I served, I told myself. I need to do more. What I want to do requires more education, and I will do it. I returned to school for my Bachelors in Social Work. I began to feel unstoppable. It was as if my life made sense. I felt a sense of belonging. I recall not wanting to go further than my high school diploma. On the other hand, I was pursuing my Bachelors in Social Work. I became confident with who I was. I began telling my story over and over again by being honest about my experiences. I repeated time and time I was a teenage parent. I was no longer ashamed and accepted my life experiences. I became accountable for my actions. My story inspired my Mentees and influenced them on their journey as well. I spent time working closely with them to own their experiences. I believe, when you allow the world to apply shame and pressure, you

force yourself into a box. You become limited. The perception of individuals in the world is limited. You have the power and control to become limitless. The whole time I thought I was captivated by my thoughts and curses, but it wasn’t until I received my first degree when the puzzles began to piece together. I was supposed to make every decision I made. If I didn’t make those decisions, how can I be where I am now? How can I influence others to be shameless? What purpose will I have? My husband, daughter, and son were supposed to be alongside me and witness everything. My family was supposed to witness their relative overcome the challenges of a Black girl, labeled as a statistic. My family was apart of my journey and served my purpose. I don’t blame anyone. The timing is impeccable. My experiences and my life is intentional. I am the first one in my family that was a teenage parent to receive their Bachelor’s degree. I was supposed to break the generational curse and live to share my story to inspire others who may have been captivated. I am Shameless Shawny. I am the one to tell you, release the shackles and FREE yourself. I am here to continue walking in my purpose shamelessly because I AM LIMITLESS.




{ I AM... } “I am here to continue walking in my purpose shamelessly because I AM LIMITLESS.”













Who is E’Tiana Larkin? Tell us a little about yourself, where you are from, and your background. Wow thats’ a loaded question. But E’Tiana Larkin is a mother of 2- daughter E’Lasia (19) and son Na’Sean (14). I was born and raised in Rochester, NY and I now reside in the Beechwood area. My undergraduate and graduate degrees are in Business Administration and I am finishing up a second Masters in Educational Leadership and Supervision. Professionally, I am the Director of Bethany House, a homeless shelter for women and children. I am also a co-host on the radio show called the 5eight5 Report on 100.9 WXIR FM, where we interview business owners and discuss what’s going on around Rochester through constructive conversations. It’s a fun show where I get to let my hair down a little bit. How did the idea for your business come about? For years I have been helping others with their businesses or projects, helping their dreams to come to fruition. People would call on me because of my strong work ethic and my reliability. I decided in 2020 that I was not going to take on any more projects unless they were my own. Then I decided if I was going to help someone with a project that I wanted to be compensated for my time.

Initially, Client-Centered Consulting was supposed to be a partnership, but my partner didn’t have the time to dedicate to the business which is totally understandable. Although I

and I expressed that I wanted to start a consulting business but I didn’t want to do it alone. My hairdresser convinced me at that moment to make it happen. Ranya told me that there was a huge need for my business in our community and it would be great to see a person of color at the helm. What was your key driving force to become an entrepreneur? I love helping people. All of the positions that I have held professionally have involved helping others. ClientCentered Consulting is no different. I want to help people start their business, present a professional credible image and help them to generate more revenue. How did you come up with the name for your company? I want my clients to know that when they enter a contract with me, the focus is centered on them. By modeling this, in turn they will learn to provide better customer service to their clients.

was discouraged, I didn’t completely give up on the idea. One day over the summer getting my hair done, my hairdresser, Ranya and I started talking about her journey to entrepreneurship

Do you have any advice for other females wanting to jump into being a female entrepreneur? Take your time. Don’t rush into a business venture just to be labeled an entrepreneur. Make sure all your business paperwork is complete, if not come see me (shameless plug). Also, make sure




SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS} } “I am also a co-host on the radio show called the 5eight5 Report on 100.9 WXIR FM, where we interview business owners and discuss what’s going on around Rochester through constructive conversations.”

the image you’re presenting to the world is something you’re proud of.

I don’t think I would have even cared about pursuing a higher education.

What has been your biggest challenge in 2020? Taking the leap into business on my own has been my biggest challenge of 2020. I really desired to go into business with a partner but life had very different plans for me. I went back and forth creating fears that I’ve never had when starting a new endeavor. I began talking myself out of pursuing it, instead of hyping myself up to start the business. Once I decided to move forward, I made January my launch date and I announced it on my radio show which made it even more real. Once I announced my launch date, all the challenges and fears went to the back burner and I began to move quickly in the process.

How do you generate new ideas? I generate new ideas by reading books, following people who are influential in the consulting field on social media

What motivates you? I’m very self-motivated. If I want to accomplish something and I feel passionate enough about it, I am going to do it. Also, my children have been a big source of motivation for me. As a teenage mother who had two children by 21, I knew I couldn’t make excuses for the poor decisions I was making. I then decided to go back to college to provide a better life for them and when I obtained my first degree, I then went on to get my masters. If it were not for my children,

There were things that my name was attached to that I knew moving forward, I couldn’t be a part of because of my business. When deciding to start a business, I also had to make sure my radio show content aligned with the image I want to portray to my potential clients. What do you know now that you didn’t know a year ago? The actual amount of money involved in starting a business. There are lots of fees that are involved in building a business and a substantial amount of money that you have to put into advertising and promotion but I believe everything that I have invested in is well worth it.

platforms, bouncing ideas off of my friends and family members and also listening to the needs of business owners. Did you have any ‘a-ha!’ moments that made you rethink your being a business owner?

What was the biggest obstacle you faced, and how did you overcome it? I was my biggest obstacle. My first thought was about the support of people that mean the most to me. But I quickly overcame it. My business is not for individuals that don’t have faith in me or support me. It’s for the individuals who have a great idea but aren’t sure of how to execute the process. What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur? - Confidence because there will be some people who may only know the old you, pre-entrepreneurship. They haven’t met ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021








{ { SHE HUSTLES TALKS} } SHIFT+CONTROL “I want my clients to know that when they enter a contract with me, the focus is centered on them.”

the person that felt brave and confident enough to pursue entrepreneurship and sometimes you have to respectfully flex on those individuals. - Professionalism because with some customers you have only one opportunity to make a great impression. - Impeccable customer service- News of good customer service travels fast, but news of bad customer service travels faster and often goes viral. That’s why it’s important to go above the call of duty and in turn you’ll receive good reviews and retain your customers. 122


Are there any resources or even advice that have really helped you on your journey?

The time I spent there has molded me into a very strong leader and added so much to my leadership toolbelt.

Social media specifically- instagram, youtube have been great tools that have helped to generate ideas. Also people close to me have been great sounding boards and have provided me with useful feedback during my journey.

Where do you see yourself in 1 year, 3 years and 5 years from now? 1 year- having the need to hire additional employees

What do you think your unique skill(s) is that has helped you become successful? I am new to having my own business but what I believe will help me to be successful and maintain longevity is my 15 years I spent working for Wegmans.

3 years- working with individuals in different states 5 years- being recognized for the work that is being done on behalf of small business owners and taking on clients in mid-size and large business.











Tell our audience a little bit about yourself. Who is La Shaun Jones and where are you from? Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY/ Long Island, I go by “LS”, LS is an accomplished Event planner/producer who has built a name for herself and her company LS JONES & Co. -The Event & Talent Specialist. LS has over twenty years’ experience, and has worked in all aspect of the Fashion/ Entertainment industry. LS is not only a business owner, she also the Chair/Festival Director of the Syracuse International Film Festival. She’s been on the board since 2015 bringing celebrities like Grace Jones, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, Daniel Baldwin, Giancarlo Esposito and so many more. She is also the Public Relations spokesperson for the Golden World Group-Miss & Ms. Golden World Pageant. What made you decide to start your own business and become a female entrepreneur? My passion for events, people, coordinating lead me to start my own company. Prior to devoting myself to my business full-time, I’ve worked, volunteered, planned other people events whose budget couldn’t afford one, so I would donate my time and talent to help others grow! I’ve noticed as there are many talented monitories in the communities and I wanted to be that avenue to get their talent in front of others. How did you get into promoting events and talent management?

I had some connection from my time as a teacher at Barbizon modeling school. When I retired from there, I was a solo woman coordinating Fashion shows for individuals store and churches fundraisers, State fairs. Whomever wants a fashion show, I would provide the models, location, designers or boutique got the show. I would go out and promote myself

and get the word out this is what I do and my services. Once that happened it grew from there and I started get more clients and bigger gigs to coordinate! Who have been some of your favorite people to work with? I love working with any talented

passionate about their craft type of people. Those are my favorite type of people to be around and work with. I love working with volunteers when I do my events without them some of the events I’ve done would of be harder to get through! How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful, especially during a pandemic? I’ve marketed my business by posting all over Social media. My logo and my services regularly. I would look out for people advertising looking for entrepreneur guest on their Podcast or Instagram LIVE. So, I’ve been on a few of those discussing my business. And word of mouth has fair well for me, people that I’ve work with have always referred me to other potential clients. What was your key driving force to become a female entrepreneur and starting this type of business? I went to college for Business Management. So, I always knew I wanted to have my own business just at that time I didn’t know what it would be. When I first moved to Syracuse, NY I knew pretty much anyone. So, I joined Barbizon modeling school as a student to meet people at first. But after a few weeks the instructor saw more in me and thought I would be good as a modeling instructor because I had the natural skills already in her eyes, I was very shocked. I grew ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


“If I had a chance to start my career ov I wouldn’t do anything differentl

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{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS } “My greatest inspiration is seeing other black successful women in business. It shows me, it is something I can accomplish.”

up as a tomboy and all about sports. But that gave me the motivation to start my own business based on that because I absolutely loved it. If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently? If I had a chance to start my career over again, I wouldn’t do anything differently. Everything that happened to me along my business journey was meant to happen in order for me to learn and grow even more. I am more aware of this because of pass mistakes

with things and people. But from those mistakes I’ve learned do more research before I take an event on or deal with a client. I want to know their background because I would like to be more aware of who I will be working with. What would you say are the top three skills needed to be successful in your business? The top three things to be successful in my business are: 1. Communication, I need to get all details from my client what is their vision for the event and budget. Those type of things have to be

up front and center. Talk about it first before you move on to start planning. What is their vision and budget? Then proceed on with coordinating. 2. Drive- You have to be a Go-Getter, no one is going to invest more in you than YOU! Step out and introduce yourself to people, go to networking events, pass out your business card and discuss your services. Don’t be afraid to talk about you to others and access if they may need your services. 3. Keep ten toes down- Stay grounded

SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS}} “I went to college for Business Management. So, I always knew I wanted to have my own business just at that time I didn’t know what it would be.”

on your talent, strength and principles. You will hit many barriers as you try and grow your business, you will be tested and challenged on certain things. As long as you know what your goals, mission and vision is for yourself and your company. Your clients will see your passion.

is making sure my clients and talents are happy at the end of the day. And want to do business with me again! Your home base is in Central NY, but where do you tend to work the most? I am home based in CNY, but I travel!

Who has been your greatest inspiration? I find inspiration in a variety of people and things. My greatest inspiration is seeing other black successful women in business. It shows me, it is something I can accomplish. I can build my empire brick by brick. Just stay focus! As I watch women that look like me reach their goals, that gives me the boost I need to KEEP GOING! Until my empire is complete. If you were to write a book about yourself, how would you name it? My book would be named: “LS is ME”- How I Built My Empire Brick by Brick How do you define success? I define success by the projects, I have to completed for a client. People go-to for success is to be rich and famous, which is what majority of us want! But my success is merely based on the outcome or turn out of an event that I’ve planned. My focus is always on the now, what am I doing now to be that successful person society has defined as having lots of money or property. My personal success, 132


I do a lot of work in NYC and L.A. are my two main cities. I’ve also done work in Fl. and ATL. I am looking to continue to work in those cities and many more! Anywhere client’s needs me, I am there!

Where do you see yourself in 2021? 2021 is the year to gain more clients, get my business name out there and my services! Help talent shine on a stage or a runway. I want the world to too know “I am the Plug that will Keep You Connected” to all the wonderful talents in the world, that perfect location for your event or cast that perfect model/actor for your project! I want to be that go to person, that people know “She’ll get the job done” Tell our audience what makes you a hustler and an incredible lady boss... What makes me a Hustler is my absolutely love for what I do! I will do anything that will help my business grow in a positive light. I started as a modeling student, to a modeling instructor, to starting my own business in the Modeling/Acting world! Now that is a hustler! I am an incredible lady boss because I have a big heart and passion for what I do! I’ve strived on showing others respect as I would want in return. I am a very kind, open arms type of person who will listen to your vision and it’s my job to make it come true. I am confident in myself that I know you will have a successful event or get the right talent you need for project!




{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHIFT+CONTROL SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS} }} “What makes me a Hustler is my absolutely love for what I do!”














My name is Christine Grandin and I am the founder, creator and owner of Creations by Cutting Corners and Unapologetically Authentic. Our mission is to empower others by providing a platform for self-expression through creativity. I absolutely love bringing our customers visions to life! We provide customization to a wide variety of products, including but not limited to, business branding, apparel, custom balloons and event décor.

power of positivity. My mother was not taught these things, and the cycle continued. She was a single mother of four children and she did the best she knew how for the place she was at in

There is no such thing as a perfect mother, perfection is merely an illusion. However, I do the best I know how and hope that my son will take the things I instill in him and become a better man in the future.

When I started this business, my goal was to empower as many people as possible and I created the Unapologetically Authentic clothing line to do just that. I want to inspire others to break toxic generational cycles, to heal from any trauma they may have endured, and to stand up for what they believe. Even if they are standing alone... they can be unapologetically authentic! I myself spent far too many years of my life living in the shadows of the opinion of others, not being true to myself. This caused me to be at war within myself, never being able to find inner peace. It is crucial that we are taught to practice self-love, the importance of good mental and emotional heath, the importance of inner peace, and the 140


For years I held on to anger toward my mother. It wasn’t until I realized that she too was not at peace within herself and was fighting her own demons that I gained a level of acceptance for things that took place. It wasn’t until I became pregnant with my now 10-year-old son, that I knew I needed to begin the healing process.

her life. I made a lot of poor choices in my life as an adult, which stemmed from my childhood trauma.

One thing I teach my son of great importance is to never maintain relationships out of obligation. Over the past couple years I have removed people from my life that meant the world to me, but the relationships were filled with toxicity. When it comes to unhealthy relationships, we cannot make excuses nor exceptions because someone is family, we have a history, or even because we love them. I stayed in a toxic relationship with my son’s father because I loved him and wanted to provide a family for my son. I completely lost myself in the process of loving him. I knew I was unhappy, but I felt that I owed it to my son to try and make it work, even through years of him being




{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS} }} SHIFT+CONTROL “When I started this business, my goal was to empower as many people as possible, I created an Unapologetically Authentic clothing line to do just that.”

incarcerated. One day I had enough of feeling alone in his presence, of settling for unhappiness, of being put in a position to love him or love myself because both were not an option. I chose myself and it was the best thing I could have done. I grew up without a father and I had a misconception that my son having his parents together was the most important thing. I was wrong, my son seeing his mother happy and loving herself is far more important. I made several mistakes maintaining unhealthy relationships 144


with my spouse, friends and family. I cannot be the best version of myself for my son and I if I am entertaining relationships that cost me my peace. I literally lost everything by investing myself into the wrong relationship. I was already recovering from a shoulder injury that cost me my job,. I crashed my truck because I was in such a dark place. I lost my home because I made poor financial decisions instead of investing my dream because this man didn’t believe in my vision nor to support me. I loved him when I ended the

relationship, but I no longer had any respect for him. I was heartbroken from spending years of my life in a position that deep down I knew I could never bring me happiness. I was even more heartbroken because my poor choices caused my son to suffer from pain. I realized during my healing process that our relationship was based on co-dependency. Two hurt people in desperate need of recovering from trauma and needing to learn how to truly love themselves. I do not hold anger toward anyone, we are all dealing with our own issues. I wish peace













{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS} }} SHIFT+CONTROL “I became an entrepreneur for two reasons, to empower others, and to provide a better life for my son. He is my motivation, my greatest accomplishment, my pride and joy! ”

and healing on everyone I removed from my life. Gaining inner peace and becoming Unapologetically Authentic has been a long, hard road for me. But, I am finally here living for myself, having true inner peace, fully loving myself and embracing each season as it comes. I became an entrepreneur for two reasons: to empower others, and to provide a better life for my son. He is my motivation, my greatest accomplishment, my pride and joy! Not only do I want to secure a better financial future for him, but he is coming on this journey with me. He has seen me care for my grandmother, work as a nursing assistant, provide home care, and now he sees me pursuing my dream of helping empower others. He is so very compassionate, has such a huge heart, and he tells me that it is because of me. Throughout all the pain and sacrifice I endured in my life, watching him grow into such an amazing young man makes everything worth it!

I have shared a piece of my story in hopes to encourage others to begin their journey of becoming Unapologetically Authentic. I restarted my life, I have a new place, new job, new connections with amazing people, except this time I fully love myself, know my worth, and I am pursing my dream of empowering

monthly Unapologetically Authentic column here in Rochester Woman Online. I will be discussing a wide range of topics all based on empowerment and evolution. This is just the beginning of the journey for Creations by Cutting Corners! You can also catch me with my Unapologetically Authentic fashions rocking the runway at the RWO’s Ultimate Women Entrepreneurs Expo & Fashion show being held on Saturday, April 24th 2021 at the Greece Ridge Mall in Rochester, NY. I am so excited to have my designs shown for the first time ever and be absolutely Unapologetically Authentic! Hope you will come check us out.

others! Regardless of what you have been through or what position you may currently be in, it is never too late to build a beautiful life and follow your dreams!

MAKE BOLD MOVES AND GET BOLDI have so much more to share with, and I hope you will follow my









REENAH OSHUN GOLDEN Who is Reenah Oshun...Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background. Well I was born right here in Rochester and was blessed to experience all of the types of Rochester living. I’ve lived on the Westside and Eastside, and currently live in the 19th ward but have a business on the Eastside. I’ve lived in the suburbs Churchville-Chili and Irondequoit. And, I’m also a country girl; I also grew up spending much of my school breaks and holidays at my grandparents in Wayne county where they owned a beautiful ranch home where my siblings, cousins and I explored nature and ran wild. Where did you begin your career in the arts? My career in the arts began with me as a poet writing privately as a refuge in my formative years. I always had a journal and always enjoyed writing poems and stories. I can remember reading them only to my stuffed animals. But I also remember planning out elaborate skits that I “cast” my siblings and cousins in and played director. Professionally, I would say it started when my child entered public school after the muslim school operated by friends in the small community closed down. I was used to volunteering and supporting teaching and learning there and so it was natural that I stepped in to do the same when we 152


found ourselves at Nathanial Rochester Community School No.3 (where I had also went to middle school as a girl). I knew immediately that supplemental literary enrichment would be necessary for my own and other children who

were already reading. So I started a little literary club outside in the hall where I would work with those kids and we would read, write and recite poetry and then perform for the class. We wrote

little plays and practiced performance skills, it was very sweet and necessary. Soon after I quit corporate all together to focus on being present in my child’s education and enrichment and dedicate more time to community organizing around arts & culture. What was your vision behind creating the Avenue Blackbox Theatre?? I created The Avenue as a space to support voices and art that are not always honored in our city and on the main stages of the world. I wanted an intimate space that could seamlessly become a part of the community and help meet the unmet needs of those who don’t find themselves engaged in other arts institutions in a meaningful way. And a blackbox can be very flexible and welcoming to all kinds of artistic expression. Because there are no arts spaces in the northeast quadrant and specifically in 14621 and surrounding zip codes, it also knew that we had to be multidisciplinary. That opened up so much room for imagination and for deep connections that are culturally relevant and innovative. I was also sure that I wanted to go beyond traditional “safe” space for LGBTQ+ creatives and patrons. That step further is toward bold creativity and radical inclusivity. And it has been a pleasure and joy to push the boundaries of placemaking




{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS} }} SHIFT+CONTROL “I define success as the ability to manifest your journey with intention and grace. Intention to contribute in a meaningful way and grace to honor the process of getting there. It is a journey not a destination for sure.”

Tell us a little about the business. The building itself was built to be a pharmacy back in 2011 and later turned to a dollar store when that business closed a couple years after. When the dollar store closed the building remained vacant for nearly 3 years when I was approached by the owner, Neil Scheier who had connected with me initially to connect the dots with arts programming I was doing nearby and citywide to the plans for a Joseph Avenue Arts & Cultural Alliance. That initial tour blossomed into talks of a collaborative space and The Avenue Blackbox Theatre was born! I named it The Avenue to hint to the vision of transformation beyond the walls of the building. That all the efforts would be neighborhood-centric and focused on being one with the community. It also is about the collective journey not a simple destination. The structure of the business is about creating space. Opening up doors. Paving the way. The Avenue serves youth, their families and emerging artists with a focus on BIPOC and LGBTQ+ individuals. The collaborators in the space range from partners in arts-education to mentorship, to art-making to social justice. We collaborate to create new work, produce the works of black playwrights, reimagine children’s theatre and more. We also host live music events with a focus on black music and often includes both gallery and immersive exhibitions of black visual arts to marry the sonic 156


with visual. Interested youth also learn all aspects of theatre production at The Avenue. We have a teen fellowship that allows them to earn stipends while participating in mentorship and apprenticeship activities that develop their skills in the arts both on and off stage. How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful, especially during a pandemic? Social media is the primary medium we use to market The Avenue’s programs and events. We can be found on facebook, Instagram and twitter. I am fortunate to have the support of some amazing black public relations and media gurus. Rashad J. Smith takes the lead on keeping The Avenue in the forefront of media consideration. Tamara Leigh and Tianna Mañon also volunteer when schedule permits. Since I have no staff, I rely heavily on committed volunteers and pro bono consultants, and I can’t thank them enough for what they have meant to the success of The Avenue thus far. Has being an entrepreneur and owning your own business affected your family/personal life? I’m an empty nester, so taking on this venture has been a lot like motherhood all over again. I have been self-employed most of my adult life so all I really know is entrepreneurship and balancing that with life. I also belief deeply in

service, it is my pleasure to serve. So that makes it less about one versus the other and more about both/and as a way of life. What was your key driving force to become a creative female entrepreneur? Definitely motherhood. What is more authentically creative than creating or cultivating life? That’s what drove me to quit doing the things that I did not find meaningful and creative. That’s what drove me to take such a huge risk without looking back. How do you define success? I define success as the ability to manifest your journey with intention and grace. Intention to contribute in a meaningful way and grace to honor the process of getting there. It is a journey not a destination for sure. What has been your most satisfying moment in business? My most satisfying moment is always seeing the people fully engaged in what we’ve co-created. There’s nothing like working all day and night for something that people ultimately appreciate and are fed by. What piece of advice would you give to other women who want to become entrepreneurs? I always say some version of the same thing; let your passion drive your pursuit. Don’t let money or education or credentials or be the driving factor. Let passion be that.


{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHIFT+CONTROL SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS} }} “I created The Avenue as a space to support voices and art that are not always honored in our city and on the main stages of the world.”


What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful in the arts/theatre world?

Tell our audience one thing they may not know about you.

- Clear Vision - Strong Communication skills - Flexibility and resilience which go hand in hand in my opinion.

I am a veteran. I served in the US Army which is where I learned that structure is only a vehicle, you can step outside of it at any point along the way.






CE EATON Who is CE Eaton... Tell us a little bit about yourself. Ce Eaton is a makeup artist, skincare specialist, entrepreneur with a makeup line who is committed to making sure anyone that is served is satisfied with what they receive. Chantel is the mother, daughter, aunt, and friend that wants to make the people around her proud. I never want to limit myself in what can be accomplished in my life. I just want to be able to show my children that dreams can come true when you put in the work for them. Yo u j u s t re c e n t l y graduated with your Esthetics license. What does this mean for you? Graduating was definitely the greatest accomplishment of 2020. It’s been something that I’ve been pursuing for a few years now. I just never pushed myself to actually commit to following the dream of obtaining my license and going into the career that I’m passionate about. I’m so excited that I get to do this for the rest of my life. I can dive deeper into the world of beauty with skincare. What is your favorite part of doing what you do? My favorite part of doing what I do is seeing the end result of my work.

Whether it’s through makeup or skin care, I love being able to see the outcome of the skills I have learned. Tell us a little about your business, Haus of Kula and how you came up with such a unique name? I’ve wanted to create a brand of my own ever since I started freelancing as a makeup artist. That idea really

heightened during the big scandal with influencers makeup lines, and I wanted my customers to know that I’ve done the research to make sure I know what ingredients are going into my products and how they enhance the product they are purchasing. Haus is defined on urban dictionary meaning the best of something and Kula is my last name Eaton in Swahili.

Can you describe/outline your typical day? Well, it kind of involves sleeping in for a bit lol.. But since I’m not in school anymore, I try to make up for that. Now that I can make my own hours, I try to focus on what goals I want to accomplish for the day or the month or the year. A lot of times I forget what my ideas were, so I may need an assistant very soon to help me with that. How has being an entrepreneur, student and artist affected your family life? I always try to find balance in my life with everything that is going on. When my boys aren’t with their dad and stepmom, I do my best to reserve time for them. We will play board games or watch a movie or something. Normally I would take them on a “mother/son” date, but since the world is closed down, it’s been kind of hard to do that nowadays. I am super grateful that they understand the career that I have and I do my best to provide everything they need in their lives. What was your key driving force to become a female entrepreneur? I’ve always wanted to have my own business. I think as I became older, I didn’t like working for other people anymore. The hardest part was trying to figure out what I was passionate about enough to work on. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021











SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS} } “Chantel is the mother, daughter, aunt, and friend that wants to make the people around her proud. I never want to limit myself in what can be accomplished in my life.”

What motivates you? My children are my biggest motivation. Being a teenage mother and a single mother, I never wanted my children to think they stopped me from achieving things because of them. I’m working to show them that even though life gives you uncertainties, it doesn’t mean that your life has to stop. How do you generate new ideas? My mind is a continuous roller coaster of ideas. I spend a lot of time in my head thinking of new makeup looks

to try, or editorial looks, or maybe a new sparkle or pigment that I want to create. Everything usually hits me at once and usually when I’m driving. I just have to do my best to remember to write my ideas down so I don’t forget them. What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear? I think my greatest fear is failing terribly as a parent, and as a business woman. I don’t want my children to feel/believe that I have given up on

an idea or a dream. The biggest way for me to manage fear is to speak to God. The more I pray and give God my issues, the better I feel. How do you build a successful customer base? Building a successful customer base is pretty difficult for me at this moment. It’s more of putting the work into getting myself out there to let potential clients know of my skills and services to bring them in. Most of all, I just do what I can to ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS}} “My children are my biggest motivation. Being a teenage mother and a single mother, I never wanted my children to think they stopped me from achieving things because of them.”

make sure my clients are satisfied with the service that has been provided to them. I consider it a privilege to work with every one that I have ever been in contact with. Where do you see yourself in 2021? What about your 3 year goal? In 2021, I see myself taking in more clients. I’m looking forward to gaining new experiences with my license, and working on my craft more. In 166


3 years, I’m planning to move to Georgia to pursue opportunities there. I would love to have my own studio down there. Tell our audience one thing they may not know about you. I come from a very musical family. My dad is a drummer and every one on my mom’s side of the family sings. I’ve been very blessed to have had that experience as a child. I also

wanted to be a figure skater when I was younger. Contact her at enchantedfaces17@ or Haus of Kula or Enchanted Faces on Facebook @enchanted_byce @hausofkula on Instagram and Twitter









NICOLE BAUERS Nicole Bauers, female entrepreneur and owner of Bauers Boutique and Gift Shop opened Bauers Boutique in the Village of Spencerport in 2018 with a simple purpose in mind: to use the storefront to display her custom apparel and gifts and allow customers to pick up their orders.

chocolates, home décor, and much more and rent “shelf ” space from Bauers. In return, she promotes and sells their products via the storefront and social media channels. For Bauers, there is nothing more rewarding than partnering with other small business owners to stock the shelves

What started as a part-time gig quickly evolved into a thriving and well-known small business. Bauers Boutique is now one of Rochester’s top gift shops and thousands depend on Bauers to create custom-made apparel. Hundreds of local vendors have displayed and sold their products at the Boutique.

In the event of another shutdown, she knew they’d never survive, so she immediately began brainstorming ways to make the storefront more sustainable. As such, Bauers Boutique and Gift Shop will look slightly different in 2021. For starters, the store is moving to a smaller location right down the street!

Bauers has always offered screen printing, but to keep up with the demand for custom products and smaller orders, she most recently added an industrial size direct to garment printer. Now she is only printing in ink to ensure the apparel is high quality and the prints are vibrant and long lasting. “I’ve loved watching the Boutique grow,” says Bauers. “One vendor started with me at the beginning in the smallest space possible, and she has added new machines to create bigger and better products and now she rents the largest space we have in the shop!” Vendors are small business owners who create products like candles,

homeschooling her three children, and finding a way to keep orders coming and going despite no longer having an open storefront. “I continued to run the store virtually with nocontact porch pick up, but rent was still due and we never saw a penny of relief,” says Bauers. “But I had to keep us alive. Not just for my family, but for our customers who count on us for their unique and local gift giving needs, and for the businesses that count on our store to help them sell their products to provide for their families.”

in the Boutique and offer customers a customized shopping experience featuring local, homemade gifts. “There is something for everyone,” says Bauers. Like many small business owners, things became stressful as Covid-19 measures forced closures. Bauers balanced working from home,

Bauers is committed to the Spencerport community and looks forward to continuing her storefront there. “Spencerport is where my heart is,” says Bauers. “During Covid, we received so many messages, posts, and customer reviews that mentioned how thankful the community is to have us. I need to let them know





SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS}} “When we work together, we will be that much stronger, and if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that.”

how thankful I am to have them.” A smaller store allows Bauers to work with 10-12 of the most popular vendors, the ones whose products sell the most. Each vendor will have more shelf space to display more products, and each will be exclusive to Bauers Boutique and Gift Shop.

“In addition, working with an exclusive group of vendors allows us to partner together more. We can create assorted gift baskets, cross promote each other’s products, bundle various vendors’

These local, homemade items will not be available in other shops, making the Boutique more special and unique. These vendors have committed to sell their products at the Boutique for at least a year so customers can look forward to consistently seeing their favorite products. In addition, Bauers w i l l h a ve m o re time to focus on her fast-growing custom-made apparel business. She takes individual and commercial orders and is well-known for her personalized service and topquality products. “I’m so excited for the new changes. Now we can really spotlight the products and vendors the customers really love, and I can also grow the custom-apparel business,” says Bauers.

when small businesses are closing, we want to say, ‘We’re Open.’” “Ready. Aim. Create.” What started as our small side hobby has now blossomed in to our amazing family business! Whether you need 1 shirt or 1000, Nicole would love to help you create the perfect apparel for your special event, family trip, business, school, etc.! Yo u c a n v i s i t Nicole and Bauers Boutique at https:// or in person at 131 South Union St. Spencerport, NY 14559.

products together, and more.” “When we work together, we will be that much stronger, and if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that,” says Bauers. “This decision allows us to keep our doors open, and at a time ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021




Support group/ Mentorship program Led by Nurses for nurses, nursing students, new graduates & healthcare workers Who is Ashley Washington: I am a product of my experience? I am a child of God serving God and his children. I am a mother to 7 amazing RPWC (Rochester Prep West Campus) scholars. I am adopted. I am an Emergency and Pediatrics Nurse. Last, but not least, I am Nursepreneur, owner and founder of Roc Nurses Rock. I was born and raised in the Rochester, NY community. I graduated form Edison Technical Occupational center and went on to study criminal justice at Monroe Community College. I just found that this career path just wasn’t for me. I later discovered nursing while working in the customer service industry. I graduated from Wayne Finger Lakes Boces and I’m currently a student at Finger Lakes Community College. Nursing is my 3 P’s : Purpose, Passion and Profession. Being a nurse in my community and taking care of individuals from all walks of life, especially during this pandemic when family can only be with there loved ones via phone, is an honor. I know this is a gift from God and I’m truly blessed to have received it. I started Roc Nurses Rock to make a 176


change in healthcare, and the nursing community. The saying “Nurses eat their young” has been and in use for over 30 years. It’s time for a change in our nursing community. No nurse should have to endure bullying to be a

their young” and started Roc Nurses Rock so nurses feel supported, have someone that knows the industry and can assist them with the challenges of being a nurse in a safe environment The Nurses Lounge. My favorite part of doing what I do is teaching new nurses the game before they step on the unit. I’m able to work with student nurses and new graduates and share, give advice, encourage and support them in one of the most challenging transitions especially during this pandemic. My biggest challenge in 2020 has been juggling being a mom, a nurse, girlfriend and nursepreneur. This pandemic has really taken a toll on my mental, physical and emotional state of mind at times. Networking with other nurses, nursing students, business owners my mentors and therapist has really helped me on the rainy days. I’m thankful to have the support of these individuals, family and friends.

successful nurse. Being a nurse is already hard enough especially when you’re new to the field so having another individual add on additional stress is not needed nor should it be tolerated. So I came up with my own saying “ Nurses support

a day.

On average I work at least 16 hours a day between the hospital and Roc Nurses Rock. If I’m only working at Roc Nurses Rock its approximately 8 hours

My typical day begins at 4:30am even if I’m scheduled at the hospital this is my mommy me time where I talk with God, pray, go over my affirmations review







SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS}} “In 2021 I see myself as a successful business owner helping nurses, nursing students, and new graduates all over the world especially in Rochester, NY. ”

my schedule for the day and journal. Depending on my assignment for the day I wake my children up between 5:30-6:00am and assist them with getting dressed and ready for breakfast, daycare. Once I drop my children off at daycare, I’m either headed to the hospital or The Nurses Lounge. If I’m scheduled to be at the hospital, I’m there from 7:00am7:00pm and I’m actively working with patient from the time I step on my unit until the time I leave for the evening. When I’m at the nurse’s lounge, I’m checking and responding to emails, DM’s, returning phone calls and text messages. I’m constantly working on my website, products and content for subscribers. On Tuesdays I do a weekly Zoom with Roc Nurses Rock members and monthly we meet in The Nurses Lounge on a Saturday to discuss the challenges of being a nurse, and our themed workshop for the month. Once I leave either of these assignments, I am MOM and I shut everything down and be MOM my hardest role. From there on its stories, cooking, cleaning, games, jokes, pranks toys, baths and bedtime.

Being a Nursepreneur has affected my family life in both the negative and positive. However, the pandemic made it a little bit more difficult. Being an Emergency Nurse on top of having my own business leaves me with such little time for my family. On my off days from the hospital I just want to sleep but I have a

business to run & a family to take care of, so I must put on my big girl panties and get the job done. The awesome part about having my own business is being able to share it with my children. Depending on my schedule for the day I bring my older children to the office to help me various tasks and then we have lunch together. Vacations, birthday parties and even our trips to local

kid activities had to be put on hold due to pandemic. So, it’s been a lot of movie nights, game nights & cookoffs. What my children know, and witness is there mom is a hard worker taking care of and helping individuals in our community. Providing generational wealth and breaking the cycle motivates me to follow my dreams. Going hard on everything I do so my children don’t have the same struggles I had. Everything I do is for my children who want to be entrepreneurs, doctors, nurses, police officers, firemen, teachers, engineers, architects etc. I teach my children anything is possible with prayer, faith and hard work. I generate new ideas by networking with other nurses locally and in other states online. I attend a lot of webinars and zoom meetings. I’m also a student and lifelong learner so reading books that don’t have to do with healthcare, nursing etc. also gets my creative juices flowing. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{{ SHE HUSTLES SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS { RECOVERX } }} “My biggest challenge in 2020 has been juggling being a mom, a nurse, girlfriend and nursepreneur. This pandemic has really taken a toll on my mental, physical and emotional state of mind at times.”

My biggest fear in life is failing my children. I am a child of God and a firm believer. So, I manage fear with prayer and faith. I know God got us and there’s nothing to be afraid of. In 2021 I see myself as a successful business owner helping nurses, nursing 180


students, and new graduates all over the world especially in Rochester, NY. I see my program in hospitals, clinics, schools, wherever nurses are needed. I’ve completed my vision board and I’m looking forward to marriage, new home, possible relocation to the south, a new edition to our family.

Big dreams, big goals for a woman with a big heart. Thank you so much for allowing me this opportunity I look forward to working with you in 2021.


your hair







BOUJEE BOOS LUXURY Who is “BlacDiva”...Tell us a little bit about yourself. My name is Majestic Dismute, I am a 28 year old black female entrepreneur, who loves fashion. I have four children two boys and two girls. I have been married to my best friend Nicholas Dismute for four years. I lived in Warren, Ar. Best known as “Lumberjack Town”. But, I, grew up in Johnsville, Ar. Many people call it the sticks. Im just a small time country girl who grew up on a farm, calling the cows back in the pasture with my mawmaw. My parents are Wayne and Hajime White. I have five sisters I am the oldest. It’s six of us in all. Many know us as The White Sisters or some may say there go Them Singing Girls. Lol But in all I’m just a fun, loving, four wheeler riding country girl. What made you decide to start BoujeeBoos Luxury? I have a friend her name is Shanae Ware, she actually gave me the name Boujee Boo. Whenever I would get my hair done and lashes did she would say look at you Boujee Boo. So she was actually my inspiration behind the name. Not only was she my inspiration, I also wanted to bring something different to the table. I have always been in love fashion and I finally found the opportunity to dive right in. My passion has been wanting to find clothing for plus size women. Especially luxury items. You will always see small and medium size women with nice clothes and never a plus size woman with luxury items. So my dream has always been wanting

to have a boutique were I can serve all types of women. What is your favorite part of doing what you do? I would say my favorite part is seeing a smile on someone’s face. Even though my items are inspired I still love to see someone smile just knowing that they

How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful, especially during a pandemic? So how I market my business, I go onto different social media. Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok and my website www. I would have to say with me marketing on Facebook it has actually worked for me. I actually got my first two sales from Facebook, which I was very excited about. As far as the pandemic it has actually blessed me to were I can sit down and think about my business and my plans for my business. Has being an entrepreneur and owning your own business affected your family/personal life? No it has actually improved me and my family life. My husband helped me to launch my business which I am forever grateful for. I can’t thank him enough for helping and investing in me. Because if it wasn’t for him I probably wouldn’t have been able to launch so early.

purchase something with great quality. Tell us a little about your business. My business consist of inspired handbags, clothing of all sorts of styles. I even have some beautiful shoes. Such as Louis Vuitton, Prada, Chanel, etc. We also have eyelashes, lipgloss, and soon to have lipsticks of all shades. I want my boutique to be a one stop shop.

What was your key driving force to become a female entrepreneur? My children I want them to have something when I leave this earth. I don’t want them to struggle for nothing. I don’t want them to have to ever ask for anything. I want to show them that they can have a business of their own without being told they can’t. Like my mom said “if you think you can’t then you can’t. But if you have that mindset of you can then you can.” How do you define success? Success is when you can tell your family ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


“My passion has been wanting to find clothing for plus size women. Especially luxury items. You will always see small and medium size women with nice clothes and never a plus size woman with luxury items.�

{{ SHE SHE HUSTLES HUSTLES TALKS TALKS }} “Whenever I would get my hair done and lashes did she would say look at you Boujee Boo. So she was actually my inspiration behind the name.”


we are going to be alright. Success is telling your husband you can quit your job we will be okay. Success is telling your mom and dad here is you a plane ticket you can go anywhere you desire it’s on me. That is success to me.

What has been your most satisfying moment in business? Getting my first order and talking to other women on how they became successful and just having motivating people in my life.

Do you believe there is some sort of pattern or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur? I believe if you are determined, motivated and driven you will be successful. You are the formula and the pattern.

How do you build a successful customer base? I talk with my customers I like to get their point of view of what type of fashion they are looking for, I love to listen. Once you tell me I will deliver.


I want you to have trust within me. Tell our audience one thing they may not know about you. You may not believe it but I use to work in an all male prison. So imagine this 5’2 person not afraid of anything. And you have these men that are 6’0 and over. Literally looking down at you. I would tell them all the time “ David wasn’t never scared of Goliath.” Shop her at






Tell our audience a little bit about yourself. Where are you from? My name is Tarri Meeks, pronounced Tarry. I am 30 years old. I was born and raised in Rochester N.Y in March of 1990. I am a true Pisces. I am Compassionate, Thoughtful and creative. I am an entrepreneur and soon to be nurse. Above all things I am a Mother to my beautiful girl Khimora. I am the youngest of 5 siblings. My favorite color is purple and my favorite things to do is spend time with my daughter, read and watch true crime television.

hang of things. I don’t recommend anyone to do that by the way because I ended up spending a lot of money on the wrong materials lol but it was all a learning process for me. Over the course of the next couple weeks, I started making candles for myself. Soon after I started gifting

When did you start your business and why? Divine Whiffs is a home based and online Candle Company which started in July of 2019. It was started off as a hobby to make my own candles to gift to family and friends, but then turned into a business. I decided to turn Divine Whiffs into a business to help make extra money while in nursing school. How did you come up with the idea and how did you start your business? It started one day when I was in Walmart walking in down the candle isle browsing the candles. I was getting ready to purchase some of the yankee candles and instantly the idea popped in my head that I could make my own. I wasted no time and soon as I got home, I watched a couple videos on YouTube and make a big order of supplies. It happened so fast because when I put my mind to something, I go all in even without full knowledge because I know ill eventually get the

that what the start of Divine Whiffs. What made you become a female entrepreneur? I wanted to become a female entrepreneur to be able to set my own rules. I wanted to be flexible and have the freedom to work on my own schedule while making money doing things I love. I later realized it was important to give my daughter something to look up so one day she could be her own boss if that is what she desires. What do you feel are 3 things that make you hustle? I hustle to have financial freedom to be able to afford things I want and need. I hustle so I can pay off debt and build generational wealth for my daughter and children to come and I hustle because I love not asking people for a handout.

candles to family and friends. Once I started getting good feedback, I decided to start posting about them on my social media. When that happened, I had people reaching out to me to purchases candles. I said to myself, if more people start inquiring about candles I’m going to turn this hobby into a business. That happened quite quickly so I decided to get my dba and candle insurance and

Who are your target customers? My target customers are women because they have a higher percentage for purchasing candles. These women would be over the age of 30, because they are normally in their own apartments or houses, who love buying candles to keep their homes smelling good. They are mother daughter, sister and friend because they like to gift other candles. How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful, especially during a pandemic? I have targeted my business utilizing paid ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


“I wanted to become a female entrepreneur to be able to set my own rules. I wanted to be flexible and have the freedom to work on my own schedule while making money doing things I love.�

SHIFT+CONTROL {{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS }} “Divine Whiffs is a home based and online Candle Company which started in July of 2019.”

ads on Facebook, Instagram, influencers and google. I found using social media especially, sharing my work was a great way to get attention to my business. When I post and others shares my helps gets my business name out there even more. It’s helpful to post constantly and ask others to share because everyone have different followings and are in different locations which is beneficial. These tactics worked great for me especially during the pandemic because more people are home and just browsing the internet. What do you love about what you do? I love that I can put a smile on my customers face just with the whiff of my candles. It is always a rewarding feeling when a customer tells me how much they love my products and repeat shop with me. Its heart warming to know that they can shop anywhere else but decide to support my business. I also love interactions I get with everyone. Iv met so many great people since I started and created great relations because of my products. If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently? Honestly feel like I am just getting started in my career. Iv had many jobs that I was unhappy at and becoming a nurse and entrepreneur is all I ever wanted to do. This will be a great question for me to respond to in about a year. Who has been your greatest inspiration? 194


My greatest inspiration comes from many different people, friends, brothers, uncles and cousins, but I would say the one who has inspired me the most is my older sister. I have watched her from a young age work hard and take on the responsibility to care for me even at her young age. I have watched her come out of some tuff situations with her head held high and remain positive and inspirational. It is her positive outlook on life that helps me to see the light at the end of the tunnel and I am forever grateful for her love and support in all things that I do. If you were to write a book about yourself, how would you name it? If I were to write a book I would title is “Her Moments of Silent Introspection” I think that title would explain perfectly how i had to look inside myself to gain the confidence I have today. Growing up shy and introverted I was always unsure of myself and my feelings. I never was sure what I wanted to do or how I would to do. I lacked confidence in myself and I was never able to reach my full potential in anything I did because of it. One day I decided I would allow myself some alone time to sit down and write in my journal. I start by reflecting on myself and my feelings. I would write questions or say to myself how or what can I do differently tomorrow? I also incorporated meditation because it is so relaxing and healthy for the soul. This self-reflection journey did not happen overnight it’s taken me

years and I’m still doing it, but it has helped me be a better me and to achieve my goals, which I couldn’t have done without doing it. What do you think others would say makes you a lady boss? I think others would say I am a boss lady because I get stuff done. I do not make excuses or complain. I am always looking and finding new ways to get to the bag. They would say she is independent, ambitious and works hard every day. Where do you see yourself in 2021? In 2021 I see myself continuing my grind and making major moves. I see myself growing in my nursing career and growing as a businesswoman. I hope to move up to the next level with my business and open a physical location. Overall, I see myself in better in position finically, mentally, emotionally and physically.


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JUDY NATALIE IS A LIFESTYLE COACH AND MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER I am of Puerto Rican decent born and raised in New York City. The popular term for people like me is Nuyorican. My parents have taught me to be proud of who I am and where I come from. I love being Hispanic American as it is truly the best of both worlds. I speak 3 languages English, Spanish, and Spanglish. LOL! My family and I have lived in the Rochester area for 18 years now. And, though Rochester has now become my home New York City always hold a special place in my heart. Growing up in New York City has instilled in me a love for people and all cultures. My classmates and neighbors were Indian, Asian, African American, Caucasian, Hispanic, and so much more. It was the best! I now more than ever cherish that experience. As a child I loved pretend playing and my favorite was “house” or “doctor” because I was able to care for others. And as soon as I could I worked professionally or voluntarily helping, supporting, and mentoring others in one form or another. I started out in my early 20s working in the Human Services and Medical Field as a Home Health Aide then a Certified Nurse Assistant. These gave me the experience needed to make a greater impact working as a Case Manager for 5 years. I then got married and became a mother of 3 beautiful children, which is a different level of CEO and Mentor. A few years

later I worked as a Supervisor to the Child Watch of one of the Local Ys. I have taught preschoolers, school age children, as well as Youth. Then back to Human Services for another 5 years as a Program Coordinator working one on one with the Abused Elderly. And an extraordinarily successful LASR program helping, supporting, and mentoring and teaching Self Reliance to those feeling stuck. I have also volunteered for my local church and created a support group for Women in the community. I discovered early in my life that Helping, Supporting, and Mentoring others is what my purpose and calling in life is. I have a passion for impacting the lives of others. For years I had the dream of starting my own Coaching business, but I kept it just that, a Dream. Throughout my life I have done many things that has frightened me but thinking about starting my own business would be the most frightening. Not because I didn’t think I could do the work but because I didn’t think “I” could ever be a business owner. It wasn’t until 2020 that I had the courage to begin this journey of turning my dream of into my reality. I faced my biggest fears and am proud to say that today I am the founder and owner of Judy Natalie LLC. I am a Lifestyle Coach and Motivational Speaker. Judy Natalie LLC exists to help Women feeling stuck discover and develop her potential so that she can become the best version of herself and live her best life. As a Motivational Speaker and Lifestyle Coach I impact, inspire, and transform the lives of others. I do this by

creating content, products, inspiration and community that challenges my audience to reach for a better version of themselves every day. I have spoken to groups of Women on topics such as Overcoming Fear and Setting Goals. I have created Free Challenges to assist with 1. Creating Healthy Habits 2. Practice Gratitude 3. The Importance of Journaling 4. Taking care of your Whole Self. I have also hosted Vision Board Parties. Currently happening at Judy Natalie LLC Vision 2021 Planning Workshop on January 23, 2021 at 2pm During this workshop you will: • Clarify your desires and dreams. • Give your desires and dreams a visual representation. • Have a plan to stay focused on your goals daily. • Have a fun time **Setting Goals, creating a visual representation, and visualizing them daily is a crucial part of making it your reality. Register for Vision 2021 Planning Workshop. Link below. Together We Soar A Free Community for Women that provides a safe and supportive place for Women to come together to support and empower one another. Book Discussion of Battlefield of the Mind. starts January 13, 2021. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS} }} SHIFT+CONTROL “Create a Vision for 2021 by setting Monthly Goals, Weekly Goals, achieving those goals, and practicing gratitude daily.”

Come join our community! Here is the link groups/155327195143528 Girl + Vision Planner Don’t have a Planner yet for 2021? Check out my Girl + Vision Planner. Create a Vision for 2021 by setting Monthly Goals, Weekly Goals, achieving those Goals, and practicing Gratitude daily. Gain more control and get more organized with your Weekly planning, Meal planning, and Family planning. There is also a weekly Self Care guide to keep you on track in taking care of YOU. Also, included is a blank Vision Board for you to create a visual representation of your goals for 2021. Visualizing your goals daily is a crucial part of making them your reality. You can purchase Planner on my website below. Gratitude Changes Everything Journal and Weekly Planner This Gratitude Journal gives you the opportunity to practice Gratitude daily. Over the past year I have practiced Gratitude daily and I have personally experienced that Gratitude Changes 198


Everything. Enjoy all that this Gratitude Journal has to offer you in its Bible verses, positive quotes, writing prompts, and an additional 30 Days of Gratitude. Also, a Weekly Planner that asks you to be intentional with your Weekly Goals and End of Week Reflection. Appreciating life more through Gratitude invites

and email. All contact info below. Facebook Page You can find me on my FB Business page Judy Natalie Lifestyle Coaching. Instagram Page You can find me on Instagram. h t t p s : / / w w w. judynatalie2020 Email judynatalie35@ Start your journey today in making positive lasting change and become a better version of you. Please know that I am here to support you and cheer you on. The Best Is Next! Yours truly, Judy Natalie Lifestyle Coach

more genuine happiness into our lives. Experience the change that Gratitude can make in your life. Gratitude Changes Everything! You can purchase the Gratitude Journal and Weekly Planner on my website below. You can find me on Facebook, Instagram,









FACE FORWARD WITH WELLNESS YOU CAN WEAR! Many of the usual aspirations of New Year resolutions were left unwritten; the significance of the tradition outweighed by feelings of uncertainty. As we move forward, change has never been more important, or felt more difficult. 2020 made all of us reevaluate what truly mattered, but this year we are more prepared than ever for what the future holds in store. “I was inspired by ways people came together while the World seemed to be falling apart.” Jodi Shaffer, owner of FaceForward LLC, passionately reflects on her decision to take action as she prepares to launch a unique line of wellness-enhancing apparel. She encourages others to remain hopeful by emphasizing: “Right now is the time to go big! We are already at home!” This local Entrepreneur openly shares her personal struggle to accept making the decision to quit her full-time job to care for her two year old daughter, Olivia during the first months of the Pandemic. As the year progressed; stress began piling up faster than the laundry, “Too many people were met with the dilemma of choosing between money, health, or family. I suddenly realized how consumed I had become with my daily responsibilities,” she comments. Jodi acknowledged that being raised by

parents in the Education system greatly contributed to her independent way of thinking. She always naturally excelled academically and musically, but admitted that she often felt misunderstood because of her inability to commit to a specific direction. However, with failure becoming an inevitable experience, the consequences of taking a risk were small compared to the dangers many people were willing to face in order to help others. After

years of putting pressure on herself to follow the correct steps to success, Jodi found herself starting her own business; motivated by the fact that perfection was no longer mandated. “I refuse to pay the cost of living with my life!” Finding new ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle can be overwhelming with many popular wellness products unavailable, fitness centers closing, and doctors visits being limited. Jodi mentions her surprise

upon finding that many people in her life were unaware of the natural remedies that she had been taught from childhood when she began sharing her knowledge of natural herbs that can be effective to prevent sickness and strengthen the Immune system. She also began to sew masks out of extra fabric as the mask supply became more limited. She described the discomfort of working in high temperatures as the face masks would collect debris from the air and mix with sweat causing her to repeatedly lose eyelashes and eyebrows. Referred to in their family as “itchy mermaid skin,” Jodi describes adjusting to living with Ichthyosis Vulgaris; the genetic skin condition her daughter was born with. This condition affects the skins’ ability to shed its outer layers; causing inflammation and discomfort by forming large patches of dry- flaking skin. Managing her daughter’s s y m p t o m s re q u i re s maintaining a dedicated skin care regimen that includes regular application of a prescription Corticosteroid cream. “I tried every product on the market searching for anything that would help, but nothing seemed to make a difference. It took a year of trial and error before she was even diagnosed by a Dermatologist.” Even with quick integration of extra safety precautions, she expressed growing frustration at the lack of attention being ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{{ { SHE HUSTLES SHE SHIFT+CONTROL HUSTLES TALKS TALKS}}} “A dream without a plan is just a wish! A lifestyle change takes time, consistency, and daily practice for lasting results.”

given to the long term effects that could result. “There were so many people around me losing everything, that care was becoming a luxury that nobody could afford.” Less than a year after making the decision to change her life, Jodi proudly introduces the concept of “wellness you can wear;” a creative line of sustainable clothing made from a natural fabric blend containing Active Seaweed and the mineral Zinc. By applying modern advances in Science, 206


Medicine, and Technology, she delivers a simple way to soothe skin, prevent odor, reduce Bacteria, block free radicals, and even provide Sun protection! She smiles, recalling her unusual methods for breaking into what she now realizes to be extremely competitive and involved industries. “I called manufacturing companies in different countries and asked questions until I managed to acquire a complete supply chain for production.”

When changing clothes becomes too much to manage, changing the world will have to wait. Are you are ready to empower yourself with a simple way to face forward? Increase health. Inspire care. Improve the Planet. Learn more about the upcoming launch of Wellness you can wear at www.









Tell us a little bit about yourself and where you are from? I am Myshon Bryant. I am the visionary and proprietor of Salted By MLB. I am originally from New Haven, Connecticut; however, I have lived in Rochester, NY, for over 25 years. I love crafting things, creating mixes, and making things look pretty. I am in love with gorgeous tablescapes and decor. I am single with no children of my own; therefore, I spoil my nieces and nephews. I enjoy spending time with my friends and family. Also, I love to laugh and to make others laugh. When did you start your business, and why? I have been curating Bath Salts for years for my mother, who has fibromyalgia, but I formulated and produced Salted by MLB this year. My mother often expressed to me how great she felt after soaking in them. Earlier this year, my mother depleted her supply and asked me to purchase her some more. I explained that I have been making the blends myself; she was impressed and requested that I make more. Therefore, I decided to make enough to last her for months. While on the phone with one of my sorority sisters {Zeta Phi Beta, Sorority, Incorporated, Theta Alpha Zeta Chapter} I was packing the bath salts into a gift basket. She inquired about the background noise, and I relayed to her the story of my mom and the bath salts. She asked me why haven’t made this into a business. I replied that I do this out of love and as a hobby; if I created a company, I would not have

the ability to walk away from it as I can now as this is a hobby. She then stated, don’t be selfish. Do you know how many other people you could be helping? That statement sat with me for a couple of days, and ultimately my compassion to help others overruled my selfishness to keep this as just a hobby, thus Salted By MLB was born!

What is most important to you being a female entrepreneur? I have a heart for women. I want to see all women succeed, reach for, and smash their goals. When you see someone actively pursuing their goals or dreams, it motivates you. The essential element of being a female entrepreneur is offering inspiration. I am inspired to create

space for more women entrepreneurs. I hope to do my part and inspire other women, as well. Who is the most influential person in your life? My mother is the most influential person in my life. My mother has always shown her children love and affection, but most importantly, she demonstrated that nothing was impossible. She never discouraged any dream I had, and I had a lot. If you ask her today, she will still tell you that I am “something else.” I tell her all the time, how much I admire her. My mother was always making new friends and exposed us to multiple cultures at very young ages. My mother encouraged responsibility and hard work. I have been working since the age of 15. I am still baffled; I don’t know how she did what she did, but I am grateful, and I love her for it! What is your background? I have worked in the non-clinical sector of healthcare for over 15 years. Before that, I was a cosmetologist for years, working in various salons. While in high school, under the program “good grades pay,” I worked at Bausch & Lomb, Kodak, and Xerox doing secretarial work. During my junior and senior years in high school, I worked full time at night for Chase bank as a check encoder. I started cosmetology school (with permission) a month before graduating high school. After “retiring” from being a hairstylist, I re-entered the banking industry as a teller before ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{{ SHE SHE HUSTLES TALKS SHEHUSTLES HUSTLESTALKS TALKS}}} “I am Myshon Bryant. I am the visionary and proprietor of Salted By MLB.”

graduating high school. After “retiring” from being a hairstylist, I re-entered the banking industry as a teller before shifting over to healthcare. I decided to further my education, and I have obtained an Associates, Bachelors, and now a Master’s degree. How do we expand women’s networks to accommodate all women entrepreneurs and support one another? I say be open to inviting someone to the table, even if it’s just to observe. We need more women that are willing to help each other. I believe there is room for more Mentor / Mentee programs that foster relationships among women networks. Women are powerful, and once we realize that no one else can duplicate us, we will be unstoppable. Many women are afraid to transfer knowledge; the fear of being replaced drives this lack of knowledge sharing. I learned a precious lesson while playing spades with some wise women; one opposing team member asked the person to their right to show them their hand; when the person obliged, I was shocked and asked why she would do that. She replied, “she may know what’s in my hand, but she can’t play my hand the way that I can.” No matter how much information you share, the lesson I learned is no one 214


else that can be you! Have you found it difficult being a minority woman-owned business during these unprecedented times? Being a business owner period is difficult during these precedented times. It does look daunting with so many small businesses folding under the pressure of this pandemic. However, I am hopeful that my product will be

the requirements needed to obtain an LLC, DBA, and so forth. I also would have solidified an actual business plan and acquired mentors. How do you plan on growing your business in the next year? I am super excited as Salted By MLB will incorporate Bath Bombs and Shower Melts into the product line. There are also new products that are in the works for men and specific holidays. I am working on increasing Salted By MLB’s social media presence. There will also be an official live business launch for Salted By MLB on Sunday, January 31st. Tell the readers one thing they may not know about you... This fun fact is random, but when I eat candy such as skittles, I separate them by color and eat them in a pattern that keeps them equal in number.

able to bring some joy to the people. What has been your biggest challenge? What has been your biggest success? My biggest challenge has been launching a business while working and attending school full time. My most significant success thus far has been obtaining an LLC. If you could do one thing over knowing what you do now, what would that be? I would have done more research on

Currently Salted By MLB offers Premium Customized Bath Salts, Salt Scrubs, and Sugar Scrubs. Very soon, Salted By MLB will also carry Bath Bombs and Shower Melts. All products are available in nine signature fragrances; Mango Tango, Fresh White, Caribbean Blue, Berry Lavender, Tasty Watermelon, Juicy Grapefruit, Midnight Vibez, Sunshiny Lemon & Minty Julep. Please visit SALTEDBYMLB.COM for more information and visuals.







HOPE IN ART STUDIO Inspired by the natural world around her Lesley will never run out of ideas for her paintings. She works in acrylics, oils, watercolor and colored pencil and has recently enjoyed creating some very organic fluid paintings. A self-taught artist and musician Lesley was born in England and settled here in the states in 1974. Her childhood was very busy with her parent’s cross-Atlantic moves so she didn’t even realize she had art talent until she was in her late twenties.

exercising regularly it often saves my sanity. I am inspired daily with ideas for painting. Creating is so satisfying for me. Not only do I feel a sense of accomplishment but I do feel that my talent is God given. When I paint I am doing what God gave me the talent and desire to do. How dare I not use it? Painting always offers me something to look forward to also. I would need another lifetime to realize everything I would like to achieve artistically.

Lesley considers herself a “natural born” teacher. “Whenever I experience something good I have this urge to share it”. This is why naturally evolved in to a teacher. Lesley was working in drug treatment as a Recreation Therapist at the time and she would teach what she was learning to paint with the clients. Lesley went on to teach at Monroe Community College for nearly 20 years in Health Education using her knowledge and expertise from working 11 years in drug treatment teaching about addiction, women’s health and stress management.

Being a part of the art community in

Lesley opened Hope In Art Studio in Fairport NY part time in 2009 and when she retired from MCC she moved the studio to Canandaigua to commit full time to painting and teaching art. When I first opened the studio in Fairport my aim was to introduce people to art so that they could experience the joy and “hope” that it has offered me through the years. Art completely enhances my quality of life and in addition to

Canandaigua has really been exciting. We have an incredibly talented community here. I enjoy the company of other artists so much and we really need each other in various ways. There is also so much variety amongst the artists here so there is little competition. I never feel like I am stepping on anyone’s toes. Our Wine Walks, Beer Walks and Food Walks alone bring a lot of people to the town. And there are numerous festivals and events throughout the year that allows for people traffic. Our Merchants Association headed by Denise

Chaapel is always hard at work cooking something exciting up for tourists and locals to enjoy. Lesley teaches a variety of art classes and paint nights at her studio. “Art is nourishing for the soul” she explains and I do believe anyone can learn to paint. Some have more innate talent than others yes but painting is not just about talent. It’s about passion and willingness to learn also. If you are inspired by the world around you then you owe it to yourself to take a few classes. Open Studio is a great place to start. Tuesdays at 1pm students of all levels meet at Hope In Art to work on projects of their own choosing. No experience necessary. “There is definitely a social element to this class too. We have lots to share about life and experiences and we have some good laughs too.” Email Lesley for more information at lsbrogan@ . If weekly classes are not for you Lesley teaches Paint n’ Sips once a month. These are designed for people that have never painted but want to try painting and have some fun too. It’s BYOB Go to for a list of upcoming Paint n’ Sips. Lesley also offers Private Paint Parties for groups of 6 or more. Traveling to you or at her studio Lesley brings all materials and instruction for Girls Nights, Birthdays, Bachelorettes or any special events. For ideas on what you’d like to paint at your private party go to ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{{{ SHE HUSTLES SHE HUSTLES TALKS TALKS}}} SHIFT+CONTROL “Art is nourishing for the soul, she explains and I do believe anyone can learn to paint.”

paint-night-ideas and choose from 150 paintings what you’d like to paint at your special event. Throughout the year Lesley also offers Date n’ Paints and Parent/Child Workshops. If you have a work-team that would benefit from an experience that fosters cohesiveness Social Artworking can unify as well as reward your staff. With 30 years of experience working with large groups Lesley can assess your teams unique needs with you and tailor ideas for art projects can foster cohesiveness, provide a level playing ground and improve listening skills in a setting that fosters a unique connection. Throw in some fun and laughter and you can’t beat the experience! Contact Lesley to discuss how she could meet your teams needs at lsbrogan@rochester.

Contact Lesley for more information 585 727 4574.

Kids Art Classes have gained popularity of late and Lesley offers after school art classes for kids via ZOOM. Ages 7-11 on Tuesdays at 4pm and ages 12-15 on Thursdays at 4pm. Contact Lesley for more information lsbrogan@rochester. or go to www.HopeInArtStudio. com.

workshops aim for providing a setting in which one quiets oneself, centers and everyone sets their own intentions for a healing experience throughout the workshop. Short meditations are utilized to aid in becoming “still” and Lesley guides you through how to create a mandala that is reflective of your energy and healing journey. These are offered several times throughout the year with the next one coming up this spring “Honoring the Women

Just because she has nothing else to do Lesley loves painting animals and will paint your beloved pet by commission. 220


Finally, Lesley considers herself a spiritual person. As a result, she became a certified Healing Mandala Facilitator in 9 years ago. Her mandala art workshops are not a “class” per se, they are more spiritual in nature. Even though participants do create a mandala in colored pencil these

in Your Life” that begins with 45 of minutes of relaxing yoga with Dianne Murphy of Grounded by Yoga Studios and then a 2 hour mandala workshop. No experience necessary. Learn more at . Last but not least Lesley is a vocalist with the band “Reflections, “classic rock at it’s best”, boasting 4 part harmonies, 2 keyboard players and sounds from the 60’s and 70;s. Lesley joined these talented guys this last June. In 2021 Reflections will be available for weddings, clubs, and other music venues . Their schedule will be posted on their facebook p a g e w w w. Reflectionsroc or email Lesley for information at lsbrogan@ ShakespeareBrogan, Artist & Teacher








FROM WEEPING TO WALKING Thus says the LORD: “Refrain your voice from weeping, And your eyes from tears; For your work shall be rewarded, says the LORD, And they shall come back from the land of the enemy.

Purpose takes us from lost to aligned with God’s purpose and vision for our lives. When we have no purpose, we tend to wander through life setting empty goals that produce very little fulfillment.



We must be ready to do the things that are required of us when it comes to hitting the bullseye of purpose. We must be willing to submit to God, serve others, and have an open heart to receive his promises. God has a plan and purpose for each of us the moment we are conceived. He created each of us to accomplish his ultimate mission. When we come to this revelation, He turns our sadness into laughter, our pain into joy, and our failure into victory. We go from weeping to walking.

In my early years of mentoring, I quickly learned that a lot of young women, and people in general, haven’t discovered their true purpose. I was most surprised by the number of women who were moving through life with intent, yet still unsure of their purpose. Not only that, I learned that some who knew their purpose had not yet uncovered the calling on their lives. A few knew both their purpose and calling, but were still trying to figure out what it all meant. I’ve come to understand that navigating life with intent leads to a discovery process which I call “the unfolding of purpose,” which then leads us to everything meaningful in life. Purpose is not something you find or stumble upon. It’s an unveiling of God’s truth, a revealing of the gifts that He has equipped you with from the time of conception. It’s a moment of clarity that makes sense of your life and more importantly, explains why you’re here. It’s God’s way of revealing your journey towards destiny.

the goal. The goal lacked substance.

Without purpose, we set superficial goals that produce a temporary high or state of happiness that in the end, leaves us feeling emptier than before. Why? Simply put: because there was absolutely no defined purpose behind

Essentially, your purpose is what you were created to do. It’s the reason you’re here. It’s an explanation as to why God created you. Jeremiah reminds us that God has a plan for our lives; His plans include giving us hope and a future, a plan to prosper, and to cause us no harm. Discovering purpose is like seeing yourself, the real you, for the first time. It’s a discovery process that takes us on a lifelong journey. Perhaps my friend Ashali summed it up best: “Purpose is knowing and understanding where my piece of the puzzle fits into the big picture. We each have our piece, and when we put all the pieces together, it creates a beautiful product. On the other hand, if a puzzle piece is placed upside down or in the wrong spot, it yields an incomplete work of art. The puzzle can end up with too










{ SHE HUSTLES TALKS } “I was most surprised by the number of women who were moving through life with intent, yet still unsure of their purpose.”

many pieces in some places or pieces that are scattered all over the place. But if we put each piece where it belongs and understand where and how our piece fits into the bigger picture--- when done correctly, we create a masterpiece.” That’s what purpose is. It’s your place in the world in terms of what you were created to do. One of a kind, and designed to shine. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are His masterpiece , a work of outstanding artistry and workmanship. Not only are we His masterpiece, but He also created us in His image, and we’re fearfully and wonderfully made. If you look up the word “fearfully,” one of the many definitions is “exceptional.” So, when we say we are fearfully made, it means we are an exceptional creation. Every detail – from your hair color, your complexion, the texture of your hair, and even the sound of your voice – was meticulously designed, which means you are exceptional and extraordinary in every area! Whatever insecurities may be holding you back from becoming all that you were designed to be, know this: you already have everything you need on the inside to reach your purpose. You are enough. “Wonderfully” is defined as “in a way that inspires delight or admiration; extremely well.” Perhaps this suggests that you were created to be the light of the world—created to inspire and designed to shine! You are the apple of your Father’s eye. A created being that makes Him admire His work and say to Himself, “It is well, this is good.” We must not forget that we serve a God 226


who is detailed in everything He does. Everything on earth was created with a purpose. He has meticulously designed your traits to reflect Him and His glory. He is the ultimate creator, and we are His creation. He knew us before the foundations of the earth, before we entered our mother’s womb. He is the potter and you are the clay— You are His masterpiece, Psalm 139:14 Me2U Coaching: Discovering Purpose The pandemic has caused many of us to get still and reflect on many aspects of our lives. Life as we knew it would

you answer it without using your name, gender, age, marital/parental status, or occupation? Answering this question allows us to get to the core of who we truly are and our true identity. What’s your story? Pay attention to the cycles in your life. Everyone’s life has a pattern and is found in your life’s story. Take some time and write your story. Reflect on the moments that changed you, caused you to tap into your inner strengths, and taught you some of your most valuable lessons. What are you passionate about? What is your “why” in life? What do you dream about? What ignites you? What inspires you? Your passions ignite your ‘why’; your purpose gives it meaning. Your passion is the spark that inspires you to get going; your purpose fans the fire and keeps it burning through the night.

pause, allowing some to rediscover passions and thrust some of us into our purpose. However, this would not happen for everyone- and I found myself having several conversations on purpose and how we discover it. So let’s have a brief coaching session. Over the next few days, ask yourself the following self-discovery questions and record them in a journal. Who are you? If I were to ask you this question, could

These are the questions we must ask ourselves if we want to discover our purpose in life. Finding our purpose is a life-long journey and a never-ending process. As we grow and evolve in life, so will our purpose. We each have our path in life, and if we allow God to lead us, He will never take us to a place where there is no grace. As we lean into our process, we find our stride in life. We understand our place in the world and how we contribute to life’s greater purpose. We come into a space of understanding and tap into authentic power as we walk at The Pace of Grace.

If you have the desire to live a life of intentionality I highly recommend you get this workbook. Life is too short to be a part of the walking dead. This guide assist you in finding your purpose so you can LIVE! ~Vonceial JesstinaDallas, TX

COMING SOON! The Pace of Grace Vision Planning & Goal Mapping is a self-discovery workbook that was created to inspire individuals to discover their purpose & higher self; to understand their calling & to walk into their destiny. This workbook is to serve as a self-discovery coaching tool and resource. To walk you through a journey of faith and discovery.



Phew...what a ride it has been for many of us especially our small business owners. We made it through the year and now we have a fresh start for new opportunities and possibilities to look forward to. Last year, many businesses had to move online to reach their customers due to social distancing guidelines and shutdowns. If you were able to make it this far congratulations to you. By now you have figured out a way to pivot and operate your business during these unprecedented times. Although we can’t predict what the future will look like, what we can do is bring in the new year making smart business decisions.

2. FRESHEN UP YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE Your online presence is essential to your business especially now more than ever. This could be your website or social media such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or Instagram to name a few. An online presence is the sum of all the identities you’ve created and the interactions they have established online. When built successfully it can spread

So, this year we’re going to provide you with some ideas for strong business New Year’s resolutions as a first step. Here are 12 New Year’s Resolutions to build stronger businesses and have a prosperous 2021. 1. SET 30, 60, 90 DAY GOALS A 30-60-90 day plan helps you articulate your goals for the first 90 days of the year. It lists your top priorities and helps you get clear on what you want to accomplish. Take a moment to think about what is most important to you and your business. Brainstorm your goals and write them down. This will help you focus on your high-level goals and put some actionable steps in place.



brand awareness. Take time to build a solid platform by setting a clear message, providing consistent, valuable content, and engage with your followers. 3. BUILD OR IMPROVE YOUR WEBSITE We are living in a digital age. Almost everything we do is online. Whether you’re scheduling an appointment, shopping, or doing some research, you

know how important it is to have a website. If you don’t have one it’s time that you get started right away. There are so many resources out there to help you either build a website yourself with drag and drop features or you can hire someone to help. With a website, you can reach people anytime and anywhere. Prioritize your web content, have a clever consistent message and a call to action. 4. O N L I N E NETWORKING Because of social distancing, many businesses have been forced to move their operations virtually. As a business owner, you understand the importance of networking. There aren’t many in-person events going on right now so the best way to network is online. Look for opportunities such as online events, networking groups, webinars, reach out to your sphere of influence through social media, and ask for referrals. Engage yourself in online communities. Write comments, give your opinion, and introduce yourself. 5. BUILD YOUR PIPELINE If you spent any time in sales you may have heard the term ‘Sales Pipeline’. A sales pipeline can help you measure and track your sales process. It’s an organized, visual way of tracking multiple potential clients as they progress through different



{ BUSINESS TALK } “We made it through the year and now we have a fresh start for new opportunities and possibilities to look forward to.“

stages of the sale. It’s a way of illustrating where prospects are in the journey from lead to customer. Because your pipeline is so important you will need to make sure you have specific information such as names, contact info, their company if you’re ideal client is a business owner, and how they can contact you. There are many programs out there that can help organize and manage this information. 6. IMPROVE YOUR EMAIL MARKETING Email is ranked as the single most effective tactic for increasing your brand awareness, client acquisition, sales conversion, and client retention. 72% of consumers say email is their favorite way to communicate with companies they do business with. Spend time building your email list and start connecting with more customers. There are programs out there such as MailChimp, ActiveCampaign, and Constant Contact that are free or low-cost for small businesses. You don’t have to start big. Send out promotional emails, newsletters, and content your customers will find valuable. 7. RESEARCH MARKET TRENDS & INNOVATION Marketing trends are always changing. What may have worked for you 6 months ago may not work for you today. Stay up-to-date with marketing innovations by doing research. The way you build traffic and promote 230


your business is likely to transform as industries and digital landscapes change. As your business grows there are new approaches to reaching customers like your social media presence, your email list, advertising, and running a blog. 8. POSITION YOURSELF AS A THOUGHT LEADER

a lot of time checking in with their numbers. Hey, I am guilty of it too. Financial goals for a small business may include achieving an attractive profit margin or a specific number you want to hit monthly, or quarterly. Your goals should be specific and measurable. Sit down each week to look over invoices, income, and expenses. 10. GET FEEDBACK FROM YOUR CUSTOMERS It’s pretty simple but we always find a reason not to reach out to our customers and ask them for their feedback. Reach out to your customers and ask them to leave a review on Facebook or Google.

It’s ok that you don’t know everything but I am sure you’re very familiar with your industry. Create content that speaks in your voice. Your experience and expertise are what people thrive for. Educate your customers by sharing tips and giving advice that brings value to them. Start a blog, write an article, and participate in online groups and events. Partner up with a publication that will help build your brand awareness and impact your company. 9. CHECK-IN WITH YOUR MONEY WEEKLY Many business owners don’t spend

11. GIVE BACK TO YOUR COMMUNITY 2020 was a hard year for many. Some have lost their jobs to covid or struggled significantly in their business. Give back to your community by making a donation to a non-profit organization, participate in a go-fund-me event, or offer your services for a discount. 12. TAKE A MOMENT FOR YOURSELF Breathe. Sit back and just breathe. You made it to a new year and hopefully, 2021 will be a great year for you. Don’t forget to take a moment for yourself. If you don’t take care of yourself how can you be a benefit to others?



Find Out What It Means to YOU! Many people believe respect is earned, not given. But what about in terms of respecting and loving ourselves? When you think of the word respect, what comes to mind? When I think of respect, I think of trust, safety, wellbeing, acceptance, attentiveness, consideration, esteem, love, and admiration. These components should be demonstrated in romantic relationships, friendships, family relationships and in some cases with coworkers and colleagues.

attacks over and over, which made me feel like I couldn’t accomplish anything or that others were better than me. Low self-esteem and no self-love, over the years, cost me hundreds of thousands of dollars but more importantly cost me my dreams. I struggled to get out of bed. I dreaded going to work so much that if I worked over three days, I would

For example, you love someone who does not love you back, don’t love you in the way you need to be loved or who mistreats you but instead of moving on you make excuses for them and convince yourself to stay. However, you know that the situation is toxic, but you stay, continuing to hurt yourself. Even in our careers, we can lack self-respect. Many people have a “successful” career that makes them unhappy, working for companies that doubt their abilities, overworking them, and underpaying them. Another prominent example is thinking the lives others lead is better than your own.

We focus too much on making others happy, so we forget about ourselves. That is right. We neglect our self-respect and self-love. There is even a saying that goes, love without respect is dangerous. I happen to believe that statement. I lost my self-respect at the lowest point of my life. I was so depressed that death seemed like the only healer. I allowed those vampires around me to suck the life out of me. There I was, at rock bottom, thinking the worst of myself. The ghost of my past, and those limiting beliefs had gotten the best of me. I lost respect and love for myself. I had low standards and lacked self-worth. I allowed people to treat me and talk to me disrespectfully and I accepted it. I made others a priority, but I was second to them. I had no pride, my feeling of weakness and desperation made me act out of character. I replayed the verbal 232


comes naturally. However, what about individuals who have been stripped of their self-love and respect? Life has a way of knocking you to your knees and picking you back up again. Many aspects of life, lure people away from love and respect. No matter how much they would like to treat themselves respectably, limiting beliefs from outside influences get in the way.

get sick because I would rather be in bed. I had pity and sorrow for myself but no love.

These are a few reasons someone might struggle with self-respect. This can happen to anyone. Some things are uncontrollable. You can’t control what others think, feel and say about you, but you can control your reactions and who you allow in your life. Your self-respect should be a priority.

Many may think self-respect is easy to come by, but it would be unfair for me to doubt that for some people, self-love

Remember, it is okay to have standards. Respecting yourself is never settling for less than you deserve. We all deserve the



“Your transformation to self-love and respect will be a process so don’t get discouraged along the journey. Letting go of the past can be difficult, but to respect who you are now, you must let go of who you were in the past.”

SAVON SPEAKS { {SHE HUSTLES TALKS} } “Self-respect is loving yourself first and foremost. Love who you are and fall in love with who you are becoming.”

whole meal. We deserve quality people in our lives, purposeful careers, pure and honest love, happiness, and success. Don’t settle.

those who respect themselves forgive themselves. Understand, yesterday is gone, we can never go back; we can move forward.

You must know what you want. Get in touch with yourself and what matters to you. Find out who you are. When you know who you are and what you will and won’t tolerate, you become a beautiful, surfaced gem. Your focus becomes different. The activities you indulge in change, and the people you surround yourself with are aligned with your new life. When you have a new mindset, every encounter with people becomes intentional. The people in your new circle encourage you to respect yourself. Your transformation to self-love and respect will be a process so don’t get discouraged along the journey. Letting go of the past can be difficult, but to respect who you are now, you must let go of who you were in the past. You can’t make new decisions operating from your old mindset. Allow your new values to direct you. Do whatever you can to forgive yourself for the mistakes you’ve made. No one is perfect. We’ve all made them. It’s part of life — but 236


love with who you are becoming. No one will have your back like you have your back, so learn to trust yourself. Feel safe and secure within your own space before you start allowing people into your world. Your wellbeing and selfcare are a must. Accept who you are and who you are destined to be. Don’t run from your purpose, be attentive to the resources right in front of you. As women, I think it is natural to consider everyone else’s feelings and forget about our own. We can lose ourselves and our self-esteem easily. For example, one negative thought about our bodies, and we think the world is coming to an end. But I want you to fall in love with yourself so hard that every day when you look in the mirror, you admire yourself internally and externally. We protect the things that we love, right? So, learn to love yourself unconditionally so you can protect your heart, your mind and your soul. In 2021, I want you to promise to love yourself FIRST!

Self-respect is loving yourself first and foremost. Love who you are and fall in






With a new year brings new episodes of Voices For Impact. I write this article as we approach the New Year, and as I reflect on 2020 I think we can all agree that we have learned a lot about ourselves, our community and how we handle situations when faced with adversity. I started the Voices For Impact podcast in April and as I reflect back, the months have seemingly flown by even though the days passed slowly. I have grown so much through this journey and it has only just begun. If I were to choose a 2020 theme that sums up all the episodes and conversations I had on Voices For Impact so far, the theme comes down to one word: Gratitude.

even the smallest things have helped me practice gratitude. 2020 helped many of us uncover grit we didn’t know we had and build resiliency where it was lacking. Businesses had to adapt quickly to this crisis in order to

Some have called 2020 a wash but I cannot look back on 2020 as just one awful year with nothing good coming out of it. If we learned something new, helped a stranger or a friend, achieved a goal, spend more time with family, live in the moment, and recognize that, we win. The pandemic has stolen months of our lives and ruined plans, but despite that, what has gone right for you? Many thought leaders I have had on the Voices For Impact podcast have mentioned how they implement gratitude into their everyday lives. Whether that be setting positive affirmations each day or taking the time to be present. Keeping a journal to write down the good things that happen each day, 240


2020 taught us how to rise like a phoenix from the ashes and make the most of a rough situation. Over the past year, many of us discovered strengths and dependencies we didn’t know we had. When you think about it, turning from one year to another is just moving from one day to the next. 2020 is the year we survived, 2021 will be the year we thrive. The thought leaders that have joined my podcast have taught me that applying a growth mindset can positively alter the way we navigate the ups and downs of life. 2021 will chart its own course, and there is no doubt that it will bring twists and turns but remaining grateful will help us thrive. I hope you feel motivated to take on the day after reading this article and for more daily inspiration listen to Voices For Impact on Apple, Spotify, and iHeart Radio podcast platforms. Subscribe and stay connected on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn @VoicesForImpact.

survive. Every entrepreneur or business owner I had on my podcast mentioned the ways they had to pivot their businesses —embracing innovation and creativity in order to keep their doors open. Individually and collectively, we had to meet new challenges and connect with others in a physically distanced world.

DID YOU KNOW? Podcasts are really effective at selling, spreading awareness, and building good reputations for companies. It’s an intimate medium where listeners develop real relationships with hosts, so when hosts recommend products in their own voices, audiences are more likely to try their product. Voices For Impact has attractive demographics for advertisers, with listeners that are more




{ VOICES FOR IMPACT } “When you think about it, turning from one year to another is just moving from one day to the next. 2020 is the year we survived, 2021 will be the year we thrive. “

\likely to try their product. Voices For Impact has attractive demographics for advertisers, with listeners that are more of an affluent, educated consumer than average, according to Edison Research. My current list of sponsors include JAB Online Services, Kefi Marketing, EmPowered Nutrition, among others. Email 242


if you would like to get your message out to a new audience by sponsoring an episode or sharing your story to help encourage people to find their passion and purpose. Danielle is a Nazareth College alum and is currently pursuing her MBA. Currently she works as the Senior Director of Development for a local nonprofit.

In addition, she volunteers for several organizations in the community and is a Board Member for Association for Fundraising Professionals and a Central New York Business Journal’s 40 Under Forty honoree.






EMBODY YOUR POWER IN 2021 Hey there unstoppable woman it’s 2021, we made it! The one obstacle that women who are unstoppable influencers face in life, especially right now?

For years women have had to put up and shut up to make it as women in this world. We have had to play by the rules of the patriarchy and do business the “He way” instead of the “She way.” This has to change, right now we have to say ENOUGH! The old systems of leadership are

Feeling drained and run down. How can you be a positive influence when you are facing challenges that no leaders have faced before in human history? When it feels like you have given and given until you have nothing left to give?

Women are the unstoppable power and shift we need right now to make this change a reality! The more women lead and own HER leadership and that show that SHE MEANS BUSINESS the more the world will change. To get there we have to make some immediate shifts and SuperCORE our power system from the inside out! In order for women to keep going and be the power and leaders of positive change: 1. We have to understand our power. Know your power, own your power and learn how to take it back from being a victim, stuck and polarized. With energy there is power and with power there is productivity and abundance! Take your power back!

You are putting up a positive front and you’re doing your best every day, but underneath it all you are burned out, exhausted, anxious, unable to sleep, and constantly worrying. You’re so used to pushing through fatigue and obstacles that you may not even realize how exhausted and burned out you really are. You try and try to figure out how to make things better so you can make the impact you want, but this leaves your mind spinning and saps your energy even further. This is why 2021 is about dedicating yourself to EMBODIED LEADERSHIP, the space of deep satisfaction. And to get there it’s an INSIDER job. To move forward and embody POW-er in your unstoppable leadership, it is essential to gain the inner strength, health, and energy you will need to drive the new era of leadership.

us a “fix” when we run out of steam instead of teaching us how to drive our own energy and heal ourselves.

crumbling and with 2020 you may have been feeling the change. All you need to do is look around at what is happening in the world and it is obvious – the “old guard” form of hierarchical leadership is no longer working. Old guard leadership has us living counter to what makes us healthy and powerful, instead of tuning in and connecting to ourselves first. Old guard leadership gives

2. Women must learn to take a seat at the decision making table and run with the big dogs. In order to do this you need badass energy and strength. This is the process of embodying your core power and the reason why I have created the Insider Leadership Program 2021. 3. Women must find time to reset our health and empower our cellular body with energy and lifeforce. The 10 Day Reset can help you build the essential health you need right now to motor forward in your life. With a burned out engine you have no power, but with a ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ UNSTOPPABLE WOMAN } “Female power is a good thing! The current leadership model tells us that our personal health and well-being come last, after the needs of our clients, our family, and our community.”

well lubed system you are roaring and ready to go! 4. Women must sleep well! I hear many women struggling with sleep. With breathwork and SuperCORE Fit workouts, all online and start from your chair, we help you find the deep relaxation you deserve! Add in the alkaline booster and you have a full system for getting the welldeserved sleep! In our deep sleep we are able to heal, lose weight (yes this is where we burn fat!) and repair our soul. It is imperative to sleep! 5. Women must make money! Stop the LACK! Money must flow through the businesses of women in order to influence change. Without prosperous business leadership women are not able to influence massive shifts in how we do business. Women must take a stand and break through lack and limitations. The Insider Leadership Program is a quarterly system that will address the lack of abundance women struggle with and help you make immediate change. Or join our FREE MONEY ONLY support group on Wednesdays at 12:30pm EST. 246


Change at a leadership level requires intention and commitment. And knowing and owning our power must be a priority.

time off when we are too sick to get out of bed. This has to change and we need you to help!

Female power is a good thing! The current leadership model tells us that our personal health and well-being come last, after the needs of our clients, our family, and our community. We

It’s time to change this model and make your mental and physical health your priority! This is not an option but a mandate. You cannot be an influential leader if you are overwhelmed, tired, weak, stressed, or sick! Unstoppable women practices are most effective when practiced d a i l y. T h e Su p e r C O R E Leadership techniques build in effectiveness over time. It is essential to commit yourself to this practice and make your health your priority!

are accustomed to working through fatigue, working when we are sick, and generally working ourselves ragged in service to others. Stress becomes our worst enemy, depleting our immune and emotional systems and causing a variety of ailments. We push ourselves to the limit over and over, only taking

Join Dr. Pam Denton with her global mission to change leadership and create a new model of embodied leadership driven by unstoppable supercharged women!






LIFE HAPPENS I was never the type of person who believed I could have it all. Growing up, I remember wanting to get a good job and I decided being a pediatrician would be good enough. However, I did not know any pediatrician personally. But life has a way of happening and I was thrown off-course. If I am being honest I can say, when I entered college, I was undecided. I was probably unsure of my future until entering my senior year. I decided to pursue a degree in sociology because it seemed general. Eventually, I realized I loved sociology and from that point decided to go to graduate school. But like I said, life has a way of happening and my son started having academic problems. That was when I decided to become a teacher. I love education and all of success is due to education. Earning a bachelor’s degree, a teaching credential, a master’s degree and a doctorate, convinced me that I could accomplish anything. So I decided to become a Consultant, Coach, Author and Professional Speaker with an expertise in areas of Education, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Cultural Competency, Social Awareness, Equity and Community / Individual Empowerment. I considered my wildest dreams and I brought them to fruition. ACCESS GLOBAL GROUP I created ACCESS Global Group to operate as the parent company of ACCESS Coaching and Consulting. ACCESS Coaching and Consulting 248


is a consulting group that focuses on cultural competency, social awareness and equity in education and employment. GLOBAL SAGE WELLNESS I formed Global SAGE Wellness to serve as the parent company of my Health and Wellness Enterprise. The Ethereal Yoga Parlour offers a wide array of yoga classes, guided mediations and reiki sessions, while Elaborate: The Body Shoppe features, adornments, candles, lotions and potions from local artisans and Euphoria: The Jazz and Java Bistro

THE BLYSS DEVELOPMENT GROUP In collaboration with four-successful entrepreneurs (LaTerese R. Matthew, President of Van Dyke Norris Cleaning Services, Youlanda Johnson, Owner of Cocoa’s Candles, and Shaneika M. Ford, President of S. Marie Photography), I formed the BLYSS Development Group. At BLYSS, we know through land acquisition and neighborhood development we cannot only transform communities, but we can also transform lives! We Are Four Like-Minded Women, Walking Together, Working Together, Building Together. GAME CHANGER Lastly, spending the last few years looking at politics from the sidelines, I recently made the decision to get into the game. I’m running for Onondaga County Legislature, District 14. I’ve spent a great deal of my life advocating for youth. Now I will be advocating for people, families, neighborhoods and towns.

serves plant-based cuisine options and offers plant-based nutritional programs and coaching. ACCESS DENTAL LABORATORIES With assistance from my husband, Mr. Todd R. Reid, I established ACCESS Global Enterprises to serve as the parent company of ACCESS Dental Laboratories. ACCESS Dental Laboratories is a full-service dental laboratory that specializes in the design of crowns, bridges, partials, dentures, night guards, implants and veneers.

WHAT I KNOW FOR SURE Contemplating my early years, I do not remember setting goals. I remember wanting to get good grades and working for them. Likewise, I remember wanting to be in the starting lineup for basketball and I practiced daily. I could never fathom the notion of having it all because I grew up experiencing lack. As an adult, I’ve come to learn, I may not have it all but what I know for sure is everything is possible and my next day is my best day.










As we finally close the book on 2020, a year full of uncertainty, fear, and grief, we turn our attention to the new year ahead. Even as the challenges of COVID-19 persist, we look with hope towards 2021.

feel more connected with ourselves and our partners. They provide a sense of confidence and empowerment. They allow us the space to be playful and bold. These are tools that can help us cope when life gets difficult.

The expectations surrounding the start of a new year can be overwhelming. We often view January 1st as an opportunity to change our narrative. It is when we start on our journey to become better, smarter, more fit- whatever we feel like we need to become. In a time when all of us are struggling with the impacts of a pandemic, I would like to invite you to release yourself from this expectation of personal reinvention. What if we took this opportunity to turn inwards- to uncover the parts of ourselves that have remained untouched and unexplored, to gain a better understanding of our most intimate inner workings?

In general, sexual satisfaction, whether experienced by yourself or with a partner, is an important aspect of our overall happiness and well-being. Thoughtful Exploration

Why is sexuality important? Our sexuality is often viewed and treated as a luxury rather than a priority. When I use the term “sexuality,” I am not just referring to your sexual orientation. I am talking about your desires, your fantasies, what turns you on, what feels good to you. You might be asking yourself- why is my sexuality important in a time of crisis when so many other aspects of life could take precedence? Understanding your sexuality can lead to more fulfilling sexual experiences. Fulfilling sexual experiences bring forth feelings of pleasure and relaxation. They help us

● What are some things I already know that I like?

So, how can you explore what is out there? There are many ways to go about this task, but here are a few suggestions. ● Let your mind run wild with new fantasies- perhaps things you are curious to explore ● Ask your partner to describe their fantasies to you- be mindful of your partner’s boundaries!

Many people go their whole lives without intentionally thinking about or exploring their sexuality. The topic of sexuality is uncomfortable for many people to approach. If you are feeling unsure of where to start in your exploration, you can begin by asking yourself these questions.

● Watch female pleasure centered erotic films- try or

● What are some of the messages I received around sex and sexuality growing up?

● Listen to a sex related podcast

● What I am curious about? ● What aspects of previous pleasurable experiences did I find most exciting or enjoyable? Sexuality is expansive and it is okay to feel uncertain of what you might like because you don’t know what is out there. Even if you do have an idea of what you like, you might be surprised by your reaction to new ideas or experiences.

● Read or listen to erotica ● Read a book written by experts in the field of sexology

● Talk to your friends about their interests and experiences During your exploration, variety is important. You may come across things that ignite a spark of passion and excitement in you. You may also come across things that may never be your cup of tea. Every person is different. AUTHENTIC EXPRESSION It is one thing to identify and recognize our desires, but it is something completely different to engage in real life. A good place to start is with yourself. Once you have pinpointed an area of interest, you may need to do additional research. For example, ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ SEXUALLY SPEAKING } “The expectations surrounding the start of a new year can be overwhelming. We often view January 1st as an opportunity to change our narrative”

if one is interested in exploring anal play, they might want to look up the best anal plugs for beginners, the recommended types of lubrication, and listen to a podcast that includes other’s experiences and tips for anal play. When you are ready to have your own experience, set aside all of the preconceived notions about what this experience will be like. Instead, focus on asking yourself “do I like this?” and “does this feel good?”. You might be pleasantly surprised!


aspects or topics, and you may feel discomfort or fear trying new things. Your partner may not share your same interests, or you may struggle to communicate your needs during sexual experiences. Many people experience sexual function concerns, for example, pain with penetration, difficulty with orgasm, or difficulty maintaining an erection. All of these concerns are very common!. If you are feeling like you need extra support

When including a partner in explorative play, make sure to communicate with them first. Make sure that they understand and consent to the experience you would like to create. Bring them into the planning process with you! It can make you feel more like a team who is taking on something new together. First times can be messy, and they often do not go as planned. Patience, compassion, and even a good laugh in these moments can be a major aspect of success.

and guidance, a sex therapist or sexual medicine doctor can become a part of your process. Please reach out to us, we are here to help!

Sexuality is unique and imperfect As you embark on this journey, you may encounter some bumps in the road. You may feel a sense of shame or guilt surrounding certain

Thoughtful sexual exploration and authentic sexual expression are lifelong processes that require intention and effort, but trust me, it is worth it! There is a profound sense of freedom


and fulfillment to be found when we give ourselves the permission to pursue pleasure in a way that is genuine to our being. On behalf of everyone at the Rochester Center for Sexual Wellness, Happy New Year! May this next year be filled with good health, joy, and pleasure! Janie Kleinberg is a Master of Social Work student at Syracuse University and the Office Administrator at Rochester Center for Sexual Wellness. She believes that sexual wellness deserves a place of importance and priority in all of our lives. The experience of sexual satisfaction is one we all deserve! If you would like to make an appointment with a provider at the Rochester Center for Sexual Wellness, give us a call at 585-8653584 or send us an email at info@





Announcing Western New York’s first comprehensive resource for sexual and relationship wellness and menopause medicine.

Introducing the Rochester Center for Sexual Wellness where sexual medicine specialists and certified sex therapists offer a holistic approach to sexual and relationship wellness. Offering confidential and open-minded care to people of all genders and sexualities that is specifically designed to help YOU meet YOUR GOALS. Also, featuring a nationally certified menopause medicine specialist to help make mid-life your BEST LIFE







FINAL AFFAIRS. A Simple Guide to Wills, Health Care Proxies, Power of Attorney and Living Wills. What do I need to do to put my affairs in order and why do I need to do it now? Do I really need an attorney to help me prepare these documents? As an attorney practicing law here in the Rochester area for 26 years, I am often approached with questions regarding what basic documents are needed to put someone’s “affairs in order”? I am providing this simple guide which will hopefully help you and/or your family members navigate through what I would consider the most basic documents necessary to plan for the future. Please keep in mind that everyone’s personal family situation is unique and that the information being provided is general in nature. There are additionally more complex estate situations that would require additional planning and additional documents to effectuate the appropriate estate planning. As a general rule, I would recommend that everyone, even young adults, should have at a minimum, both a Last Will and Testament and a Health Care Proxy. A basic Last Will and Testament or a “Will” for short, is a fairly simple document that states what a person’s wishes are with respect the distribution of

their property after death. People often share with me that they don’t feel they have much or ‘enough’ to leave behind in a Will. My recommendation and my experience has taught me that truly, everyone owns something, whether it be a vehicle, a bank account, stocks or bonds, or simply personal property. These are all items, that if you wish to leave to a certain person or organization, you can and should have a Will reflecting those wishes.

A basic Will, in addition to stating to whom you would leave money and/ or property, can additionally include language with respect to leaving money or property to a minor child/children/ young adult and at what age you would prefer a minor or young adult to inherit. In this case, a Will would normally also include language indicating that funds are to be held in trust until the child or young adult are of the age designated and appoint a Trustee to oversee how

those funds are handled or invested. I generally recommend both naming a Trustee and an alternate Trustee if possible. In the unlikely event that both you and your spouse or partner (or both of a minor child’s parents) pass away leaving minor children, your Will can and should designate who you would wish to act as Guardian over the minor child or children. Once again, it is prudent to appoint both a Guardian and an alternate Guardian if possible. I generally advise my clients to try to avoid appointing a “couple” as Guardians, but instead only one person, along with an alternate Guardian in the event that a couple should become divorced or one spouse predeceases the other. Finally, your Will should appoint an Executor (or Executrix). This is the person who you would choose to handle filing your Will with the Court in the County in which you reside and also to see that your wishes with respect to your property are carried out. Often when I am preparing Wills for married couples they will appoint each other as Executor/Executrix and then an alternate Executor as well. A Health Care Proxy, by definition, is a document in which you choose someone to make health care decisions on your ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


HEIDI’S LAW LAW }} {{ HEIDI’S “What do I need to do to put my affairs in order and why do I need to do it now? Do I really need an attorney to help me prepare these documents?”

behalf in the event that you are unable to make those decisions on your own. The difference between a Health Care Proxy and a Living Will (not to be confused with a Last Will and Testament) is that a Living Will is a document or “advance directive” that states your wishes with respect to end of life treatment and care. A Living Will can and should include language with respect to your wishes as to palliative care (to minimize pain and suffering) and additionally with respect to the withholding of “extraordinary measures” such as CPR and other life-sustaining treatments. I personally normally recommend a document to my clients that combines the living will language or directives in the health care proxy itself. I find that this simplifies the process a bit and my clients are able to appoint their proxy and give the advance directives to that person in one document. It does not have to be done this way but is perfectly acceptable to combine these two related documents into the same form. It is important to note that these documents will in fact be valid in the event that you should become incapacitated and in fact, this will likely be when they are the most necessary. The last and possibly the most complex 258


of these very basic planning documents, is the Power of Attorney. This is a document in which you appoint someone to act on your behalf, during your lifetime, in many cases having the same authority as if they were you. This document is an extremely powerful document and the person (or persons) who are appointed to act should in fact be persons who you would trust implicitly. There

are many potential and in some cases recommended modifications to this document most of which I choose to explain in person to my clients and address the questions that they may have. As a general rule, an Agent appointed to act under a Power of Attorney must act according to the instructions of the Principal and where there are no instructions, in their best interest. It is important to note that the Power of Attorney can be limited or unlimited and can contain gifting authority which can also be limited or unlimited. It is also important to note that an Agent

under the Power of Attorney (or POA for short) does not have authority to make health care decisions. This is something that only the Health Care Proxy has. Finally, this document will remain valid and enforceable after the principal becomes incapacitated and will ultimately end upon someone’s death. I have watched the laws regarding this particular document change drastically over the years and for good reason, that being ultimately to protect the principal from an agent having the ability to act fraudulently under the authority of the POA. Finally, it is important to note that Governor Cuomo has recently enacted a law which yet again, changes the Power of Attorney process beginning in June of 2021. I hope that this brief description of these very important planning documents is helpful and I’d like to invite anyone with questions to contact me at any time. My office telephone number is 585-217-9390 and my email address is I also respond to Facebook message via my Law Office page at HeidiELaDuca. I truly treasure the opportunity to assist and guide families through this very important planning process.



Children Awaiting Parents, Inc.’s (CAP) Executive Director, Lauri McKnight, caught up with CAP Board Chair Lorisa LaRocca to find out more about this talented and busy woman. Lorisa is a Partner in Woods Oviatt Gilman LLP’s Labor & Employment Department, where she is the Practice Leader of the firm’s Employment & Counseling group. In 2020, she succeeded Maryjane Link as Chair of CAP’s Board of Directors.

I knew I wanted to make the time to become involved with at some point. After completing my term as Immediate Past President of the Women’s Council, an affiliate of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, I was finally able to carve out that time. What is it about CAP’s work that resonates with you most?

What is your role as Chairperson of the Children Awaiting Parents (CAP) Board of Directors? I view my role as Chair of the CAP Board as one that balances support of the organization’s day- to-day activities by supporting you, as Executive Director, along with guiding CAP toward sustained growth as a longstanding community not-for-profit. Tell us how your personal and/or professional trajectory led you to this position? I have always had an inclination toward “giving back” and I consistently try to involve myself with organizations that I can use my professional talents as an attorney to support but also that call to me on a personal level. As an adoptive parent myself, CAP was one of those organizations that 260


For me, it’s really the idea that CAP focuses its efforts on working with children that have been in need of a forever family for the longest amount of time. Having seen first-hand the tremendous toll that being without a family takes on a child, we felt incredibly lucky to have adopted our oldest daughter, who we adopted internationally, after she barely turned one. It was a harrowing process but it cemented my desire to help ensure that as many children in our communities

that need forever families find them sooner rather than later. What should the community know about CAP? The community should know that CAP has been around for more than 40 years and that it is an organization with a strong foundation in the Greater Rochester community but that it is emerging into an even stronger community partner, focusing not just on adoption but also on foster care services and programs to help those young adults who age out of the foster care system without ever having been adopted. How has being on the board of CAP changed or expanded your view of adoption from foster care? Seeing how committed my fellow board members are to CAP’s goal to help children transition from foster care into a forever family has been truly eye opening. Foster care and adoption touch people from every walk of life, and the only way that we can build a sustainable system that provides the services these children need to ensure that every child finds a




{ CHILDREN AWAITING PARENTS } “For me, it’s really the idea that CAP focuses its efforts on working with children that have been in need of a forever family for the longest amount of time.”

forever family is through the support of our entire community. From your experience, what does the Rochester community have in its favor regarding community involvement and support? From my work with a number of local non-profits over the last two decades, I can absolutely say that the culture of giving in Rochester is unlike that of any other community. People here are so committed to the concept of giving back, of supporting our organizations that rely on community support, and that willingness to donate their time, talent and treasure is a blessing. Why is it important for women in your position to join a non-profit board? I don’t know about “women in my position” but I think it’s vital that everyone give back to the community in whatever ways they can, small and large. Getting involved, making a difference— those are traits that I have tried to instill in all 3 of my daughters from a very young age, and I hope that they will carry with them the knowledge that they can and should do what they can to make our world a better place. As people become more established and successful in their careers, I agree it is important for them to increase their level of commitment to non-profits by joining an organization’s Board. The visibility that professional women, in particular, have within the community 264


is critical to building a network of support for these organizations among other professional men and women. That support is necessary for the long-term sustainability of our non-profit sector. You are a Rochester businesswoman who has received top community honors (named a Top Woman in Law by The Daily Record; recognized by the Rochester Women’s Network as one of Rochester’s “Up and Coming Businesswomen” and as an “Up and Coming Attorney” in the Rochester area; named a “Forty Under 40” recipient by the Rochester Business Journal; received University of Buffalo Law School’s Robert J. Connelly Award for Excellence in Trial Technique). What is your advice for up-and-coming businesswomen in the community? While it’s always nice to have your professional achievements recognized with plaques and awards, I have found that the most important aspect of defining “success” comes from doing something that gives you a feeling of satisfaction. Of course, every day is not “living the dream” — there are days no matter how successful your career where you dream about winning the lottery and moving to a beach somewhere — but if there are more days that you go home feeling that sense of satisfaction and accomplishment, you will be “successful.” What is your key to balancing your busy work and family life?

If only there was a magic key! For me it’s always been focusing on the fact that “balance” does not mean a 50/50 split each and every day. There are days where my work commitments require most of my time and I used to feel incredibly guilty if I missed putting my girls to bed or a big game. But, I eventually realized that I am tremendously lucky that I have a career and that I work for an organization that also provide me the flexibility to be able to coach their teams and travel for riding competitions on all those other days. And, I try not to miss any “major” milestones if I can help it! If you weren’t a lawyer, what other career would you have pursued? I always thought about joining the FBI! Thank you Lorisa for your wonderful conversation and for the important work you do for CAP, the community, your firm and the children! I look forward to a successful year ahead with you as the chair of our Board of Directors. We are super glad you are here as an attorney and support to us all in Rochester not at the FBI!

Help Us Find Forever Families for Children Waiting the Longest in Foster Care. At Children Awaiting Parents we provide: Pre- and post-adoption services Support services for youth aging out of foster care MAPP training for prospective adoptive parents Support groups I 585-232-5110 or 888-835-8802



Perfection, what is it? Is it something that changes every five seconds? Is it something that someone wants to model themselves after, only to realize another perfect tears them apart? What I notice in teenage girls is that they become so depressed over what “perfection” is on Social Media that they don’t see the good inside them that makes them perfect the way they are. I notice that they dress and act a certain way because they want to be “perfect” just like their favorite Social Media celebrities. Again, they don’t see the good in themselves and become depressed over what they are not. Today, I will be talking about perfection that teens think is most important: their image based on Social Media. Me? I have no problem like that. Am I the one who worries about what perfect is on Social Media? Am I afraid that if I don’t look or act a certain way like everyone else does, I’m not perfect? My answer: no. I go solo on my own boat and I could care less about perfection. What I find is that imperfections are perfections. What do I mean? Let me give you an example. Say I have a gap in my teeth or I have a vivid birthmark. Because everyone else doesn’t have whatever it is that I have, should I be afraid or what they will think of me? Will I not meet the perfection lines they expect me to be? Then I remember how many 266


actors and models have some kind of imperfection. If you take a look in movies, fashion shows, basically whatever, some of the real famous actors and models have some kind of imperfection that makes them stand out of the crowd. Can you imagine how many times they were told that they were called ugly? Can you imagine all of the times they were told that they would never get an acting or a modeling job? But

they rose above the hate and look at them now. In my last article, I explained about being different. Imperfections are the same thing, they are a good difference we need in this world. You may act and look different than everyone else, but it doesn’t mean that

you aren’t perfect. But Social Media forces teens to look at themselves in a harmful way. I recently watched a documentary that Social Media has increased depression in teens (mostly girls) because they are not like the images they see. I’m not picking on girls when I say that, but that is what studies have shown. Here’s my theory: half of those pictures of sexy girls are photoshopped or they do things to themselves that harm them. I’m not saying stop using Social Media, but teens don’t need to worry about what they look like based on Social Media. I personally am not big into Social Media. I only use it for my job as an actress and all of the other stuff I do and that is pretty much it. I am just so sad to learn, and see in school that they try to be that “perfect” Social Media wants them to be. But there is the truth: we all have our strange perfections. It really doesn’t matter what you look like on the outside, it’s the inside that matters. Yes, we all heard that saying over and over again, but it is an important one too. I have come across many kinds of people in my life, and not one of them are the same. I met people who work for this article and they are all different. I believe they all see “perfection” in different ways. I see perfection not in looks, but how a person is on the inside. I believe if people are good, then it really doesn’t matter what they look like. That’s just me thinking out loud. Look, deep down we all




{ TEEN TALK } } { SHIFT+CONTROL “What I notice in teenage girls is that they become so depressed over what “perfection” is on Social Media that they don’t see the good inside them that makes them perfect the way they are.”

still believe in certain perfections, I get that. Maybe it’s in piano, your art, your...anything. You really don’t need to hurt yourself just to be what someone else is. I would rather just have my body in one piece rather than tear myself apart over perfection. So 268


hear me out when I say imperfections are perfections. You never know how many different people and diversities you come across in your lifetime. Please follow me on FaceBook (Link:

) and Instagram (Link https://www. ) for all of my writing, acting, and singing posts.









Happy 2021 Beautiful Queens!!! We are still celebrating this new year and all the amazing opportunities that will catapult your business for optimal revenue and success. Additionally, I believe it is always a great time to focus our energy towards exuding our beauty from the inside out.

steps to support your beauty from the inside out. The five steps include taking a daily probiotic, multivitamin, aloe, omega-3 and digestive enzymes. Probiotics* support a healthy urinary tract and

Many people believe our outer beauty is important and although it is significant as we are judged and even attended to by how polished we look - this is not at all what I am referring to. I have personally taken time to focus on my beauty from the inside out to always show up as my highest self for myself, my family, clients and friends. It has been absolutely phenomenal and I challenge you to do the same. What does this look like taking care of your beauty from the inside out? Let’s take a deeper dive into how you could begin implementing this concept into your daily lifestyle. It is really simple. Are you giving your body what it needs to stay healthy? If so, it will show on the outside and if not, it will still show on the outside in an unflattering way. And I am not referring to a colorful salad with a light dressing and your daily amount of water. Although feeding your body healthy, nutritious superfoods can boost your immune system, there are additional

support the body’s normal resistance to yeast. Multivitamins* supports a strong immune system, supplements dietary deficiencies and contains vitamins and minerals that support the body’s ability to metabolize fats and carbohydrates and support a healthy body weight.

Aloe* supports a healthy digestive tract, promotes normal healing, supports a strong immune system and promotes digestive comfort. Omega-3* fish oil promotes a healthy complexion and helps enhance mood. Digestive enzymes* provide good bacteria that promote the absorption of nutrients and support a healthy digestive tract and immune system. Market America Web. 1 January 2021 < com/shopbox/6270063>. These vitamins and supplements will give your body what it needs to stay healthy as you glow with energy from the inside and out. I have incorporated these vitamins and supplements consistently since the beginning of COVID-19 and very grateful to have avoided sickness during 2020. Many of my clients and relatives have gradually added a few of the five steps to their daily routine and quickly noticed a positive difference in their health. I cannot leave out their skin is also more radiant and smooth. I encourage you to invest in your health today. Clear out your cabinets, locate your vitamins and supplements and if they are not expired, begin taking them on a daily basis to support your overall health. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ DR J’S BEAUTY } “I have personally taken time to focus on my beauty from the inside out to always show up as my highest self for myself, my family, clients and friends. It has been absolutely phenomenal and I challenge you to do the same.”

If you need to purchase your vitamins and supplements, visit your local health food store or shop quality ingredient products https://www.drjbeauty. com/beautyfromtheinsideout. We want to hear from you so after you have incorporated these vitamins and supplements in your daily routine, 272


email us to let us know how you are looking and feeling via info@ Vibrate higher, All Things Dr. J. Beauty IG@dranikasimonejohnson

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product(s) is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.








• family planning

Unlimited Text or Email There are no dumb questions when it comes to knowing your options + when you feel deflated, you need to know you can do this + you don’t have to do it alone! Answers + reassurance are just a text or email away.

• trying to conceive (TTC) • face-to-face with fertility complications (i.e. endometriosis, fibroids, PCOS, etc.) • want to take charge of your fertility, but don’t know where to start

• in need of a sounding board to help sort out your feelings and fertility options • looking for emotional support and encouragement while trying to conceive through IVF or after a loss/ miscarriage

I will help you navigate through your journey to conception by:

• We will work together to uncover any mental blocks you may have that may effect fertility journey. I will incite thoughtprovoking questions that will help you figure out the best solution for you and help you create a self affirming mantra to help you recenter + refocus.

• are overwhelmed with choices and need assistance researching your fertility options


As your fertility doula, how will I assist you?

• I will perform a fertility assessment. We discuss your goals and explore your current self-care regimen. From this, I will provide you with information to better assist you in making informed decisions regarding your health and fertility to reach your overall goals.

• looking for a more holistic approach to fertility

Well Hannahs Heart Fertility LLC is here to assist you on your Journey What is a Holistic Fertility Doula ⁉️ Just as birth brings options for choices, so does the path to conception. For clients just beginning their conception journey, a fertility doula provides evidence-based information on tracking and charting fertility as well as holistic resources to support you along the way.

This is a virtual doula service and you DO NOT have to reside in my area to take advantage of it.

Plan of Action I’ll assist you in identifying + writing out your goals + desired outcomes. Together, we can create a plan of action toward fulfilling your journey to conception. Judgement Free Support Your journey is about you. I will give you space to make your own decisions + encourage you every step of the way, in any capacity I can!

• We will break down you + your partner’s lifestyle practices. I will support both of you as you implement necessary changes to encourage fertility. • Your womb houses so much creative power. We will work together to help you reconnect with your body’s innate wisdom + ability to heal. •I will act as your sounding board when you need it most + provide unwavering ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


“ yo enc

“Your journey is about you. I will give ou space to make your own decisions + courage you every step of the way, in any capacity I can!”

{ NEW IN THE ROC } “. For clients just beginning their conception journey, a fertility doula provides evidencebased information on tracking and charting fertility as well as holistic resources to support you along the way.”

support through it all, regardless of the outcome. FERTILITY DOULA COACHING + SUPPORT PACKAGE This support package includes: • Initial consultation and assessment to better understand your current situation and personal goals (90 mins)


contracted time If you’re searching for a way to take charge of your fertility with a more holistic approach (i.e. ditching hormonal birth control), I will coach you + teach you how to track your cycle using the Fertility Awareness Method (FAM). Includes:

answer any questions you may have about FAM • Unlimited email contact during contracted time One-on-one coaching A D D I T I O N A L S U P P O RT SERVICES

• Bi-weekly video chats on progress (60 mins)

• Initial consultation and assessment to better understand your current situation and personal goals (90 mins)

30 + 60 Minute Virtual Consultations Video Consultation CONTACT YOUR DOULA TODAY

• “What’s Next?” session to debrief, review options, and make decisions

• Bi-weekly video chat(s) on progress (60 mins)

• Unlimited email contact during

• Session to debrief, review charts, and

Service Request For: * • Holistic Fertility Doula • Birth Doula







“ W H AT ’ S Y O U R BUSINESS’S VOICE?” What does it sound like?” “Is the voice being heard, right?” This is an important question I ask my new client’s so that I can learn more about their voice and vision of their business. Why? Because ultimately your business’s voice and image represents the brand. Every business should have a voice and your marketing platforms should be expressing it properly. But you

may be asking how? If you were to take a look at your current marketing and social platforms, does it represent your business? Your content is an extension of your business giving it a “voice.” It’s important to make sure your marketing campaign aligns with your business’s voice, image and goals. If this is something you haven’t analyzed before, we’ll it’s the perfect time to do so! Maybe you need a refresh or it’s time to change marketing

direction. Take the time to plan out your content, the same way you plan your goals and make sure it represents you well. If you realize you don’t know how, you don’t have the time or you’re unsure or unhappy with your current “voice,” reach out to a professional like us at Kefi Marketing to help have your voice heard by the right customers! We specialize in helping create the right “voice” for our customers. Happy New Year! ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021




My son got married last month in Wisconsin, in the forest as it snowed. I have thought about this moment in life as I do for each of my kids. As December approached and I had realized he didn’t postpone the initial date if 12/12/20 to next year, i did what any mom would do. I found a way to get there. It wasn’t without the usual instances where I felt sanity flying out the window like Peter pan did in the movie.

written word how it makes my heart feel, to know that you have found love. I sang the words of a song to you in my head for days gone by, and wished for them to be your life. “Be a simple kind of man”, couldn’t be

Of course my son would get married in the midst of a pandemic, when I had Just uprooted my life, opened a new restaurant. My other son forgot his suit here in NY, my daughter hated the dress she had to wear, And even tho I spent an hour on my hair, the snow went ahead and ruined it, We froze, as my son and his beautiful partner in life exchanged words they wrote for each other. In the stillness of the snow that fell all around us, I watched as my son choked up speaking words of love and commitment. And I realized he truly was that simple man… I gave these words to my son that day. Enjoy. So, I’ve thought about these words now for 23 years. What it is I would say. I’m not sure I can sum up in the 284


other half of who you are. You are the exact meaning of what it is I always thought love would be. I am blessed to witness the power that love has when I see you both strive to make each other the better version of yourselves. You are there to raise each other up with every triumph and new beginning. As well as hold onto each other’s heart and carefully keep it from breaking through the tests and trials you face. You leave a wake of good impressions in your path, and everyone I see who comes across it, is left to admire and respect you. I once held the hand of a little boy, read stories to and wished only the best in life for. I once had a conversation about black t shirts and black athletic shorts not being the only thing you should posses in your wardrobe. I listened to the words come out of your mouth that marriage is stupid. Yet then you met a girl. I had said once that love will make you change your mind. And I knew the moment you told me about Elena, that this day would come.

any more closer to the truth of how I envisioned and hoped for you since the moment I laid my eyes on you. My heart is full knowing you have completed yourself and found the

The shorts and t-shirts then disappeared, and bow ties, haircuts and dress shoes showed up. Dances at school you once vowed to never attend, became a false claim. You let her dress you for spirit week and







KARMA SPEAKS }} {{ SHIFT+CONTROL “So, I’ve thought about these words now for 23 years. What it is I would say. I’m not sure I can sum up in the written word how it makes my heart feel, to know that you have found love.”

you even entered the school musical, because Elena was the lead. Love is wonderful, and what it can do to your perception on life when your heart is full, can change the world, your world. “You’ll find a woman, and you’ll find love” is your reality and not just a song I sing and hope to be your truth. As I sit and think about all the words I could or should say, all the years leading up to the day I always knew would come, it seems I can’t choose the perfect combination to

say exactly what I want. My mind races to the days when as a child you ran to me and needed me. To the days when I had to let you go, and become the wonderful man you have become. To find your other half in life, Elena. The one who makes you smile, and laugh and will now forever be the woman who holds your hand as well as your heart. On this day, you marry your partner, your friend, your wife, and I have gained the other half of what makes you whole. And for this, there are

not words one could say. “So be a simple kind of man, be something you love and understand” … Make all the memories, take all the pictures and love with all of your heart, every day as much as you do today. And if ever you need me, I’ll be right here, mazel Tov love mom. 12/12/2020 ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021







“We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.” J.K. Rowling, Doing work in Diversity, Inclusion and Equity affords me the opportunity to work with people from all walks of life. I love my work because I love connecting with people. Recently, I met with a group educators and stakeholders for a roundtable discussion on private schools, public schools (suburban and urban), and homeschooling. We talked about how urban school districts are failing our communities and our students. We talked about how families are leaving these areas because of limited opportunities. It was a lively discussion with no real solution other than government programs and increased involvement and oversight. It’s unfortunate how people seldom consider systems that are in place to keep schools underfunded and underperforming. Likewise, I am always amazed when people suggest government assistance for correcting school failure. Please understand, I am not saying the government has not contributed to many of the ills that plague urban communities, however, what I am saying is looking to government agency (local and / or national) to correct or solve these problems is preposterous. The government cannot transform school systems, communities transform school systems. We are the solution. We are the answer. We are the cure. We must uplift our communities

in order to transforms our schools. Let’s consider a different solution: Homeschooling, suburban schools and private schools are all viable options, but what about the students who will be left behind? What about the student who has to attend a traditional public school? As a community, what is our obligation to that student? Like many of you, I want to see urban schools thrive and flourish. That being said, I decided that one child, one community, one life abandoned is too many. It is time to be the revolution our communities need. “I know if you move further away, it will not impact you, if you choose better schools, it will not effect you and if you pretend that it is not happening, you can continue to live your life, but honestly, everything that occurs in our greater community, influences our well-being. As a community, we need to stand up. Change starts with us. The days of waiting for someone else are long gone. Collectively, let’s decide to work together. This is not about being more diverse or inclusive. This is about being compassionate and building relationships.

- Listen to the stories of others. - Volunteer with youth organizations. - Buy local when possible. - Support budding entrepreneurs. - Mentor students from underserved communities - Be open to having new cultural experiences. - Engage people with differences and learn from their experiences. Conclusion: We are responsible for our surroundings and the state of certain communities, confirms no one else will shoulder this responsibility. We can longer look to local, state, or federal entities to revitalize and / or develop our neighborhoods; this obligation is ours. It starts with us deciding change is possible and that we are fully capable of designing our unified destiny.

This is about lending a hand and not offering judgment. What can you do today to impact someone else’s tomorrow? Here are some suggestions: - Seek to understand. - Do not make assumptions. - Assume positive intent - Be friendly and make connections. - Tell your story. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021




The year 2020 revealed the power of sanctuary. Whether it was the sanctuaries in our minds to escape the craziness of the year or the sanctuaries of our homes to protect ourselves from the coronavirus, our idea of what a “sanctuary” is took on whole new meanings.

desperately needed as the kennel had been operating out of same outdated building since the 1980s, and the clinic was being run out of cramped trailer. Both of these new facilities improve how we can treat our canines and other animals to ensure they find their

At Animal Care Sanctuary, in both East Smithfield and Wellsboro, Pa., this power was experienced at a level that has never been before in our five-plus decades of existence. For example, not only did we find forever homes for over 1,000 cats and dogs from the first time ever, we shattered our previous annual adoption record by finding homes for well over 1,200 animals – despite being closed for six weeks due to COVID-19. Additionally, despite also being closed for six weeks, our low-cost community clinic performed over 3,100 spay and neuter surgeries in 2020 – another record that will reduce the homelessness of animals across our region. We also opened our brand-new community clinic and dog kennel after years of fundraising, planning and building. These facilities were 292


forever homes healthy and happy. Continuing our partnership with Humane Society International and Humane Society of the United States this year, we accepted 20 dogs that were rescued from dog meat farms in South Korea, as well as further developed our partnership with other transportation agencies

to rescue animals from high-kill shelters in the southern U.S. The aforementioned 20 dogs were all spayed, neutered and examined by our veterinary teams and just about all of them have been adopted or are in foster care. Our Wellsboro location saw its own growth this year with the opening of its own gift shop as well as the introduction of hiking trails on the dozens of acres of woods and fields thanks to a grant awarded by Dominion Energy. The year 2020 also saw the Wellsboro dog park expand its membership as residents looked to safely leave their homes with their furry friends during the pandemic. While 2020 has been an extremely difficult year for many, we’re so encouraged by the compassion that thousands of people and families have shown to animals as well as ACS and all the other shelters that rescue and support animals in need. We’re looking to keep this mission moving forward in 2021 and continue to find many more animals their forever homes and promote animal care and wellbeing across our communities.



{{ THE ACS CORNER }} SHIFT+CONTROL “Additionally, despite also being closed for six weeks, our low-cost community clinic performed over 3,100 spay and neuter surgeries in 2020 – another record that will reduce the homelessness of animals across our region.”






DOES SCALP MICROPIGMENTATION WORK? When you’ve got unseen little patches on your scalp as a result of hair loss, such a condition is described as Alopecia Areata. Often, people find it very difficult to notice or find these patches because they sprout so close to one another and become hard to spot, resulting in hair loss. Ever wondered why anyone should have to deal with this?

and ends up mistaking viable cells for foreign intruders to the body. Since it is the job of the immune system to stay active on guard against foreign substances, it sometimes can’t tell the good guys from the bad. When a person is diagnosed with Alopecia, it means the immune system had a ‘no mercy’ combat on their hair

Medical Treatments Applying medications into the fallout areas on your scalp is an easy-going treatment method suggested to many. We’d list out a few medications that help maintain your hair growth both OTC and from prescription by specialists:

What Is Alopecia Areata? Well, the condition becomes a great deal when a person’s immune system fights their hair follicles, which results in potential hair loss. In men and women, pattern baldness occurs on their scalp, sometimes eyelashes, eyebrows, and face. Interestingly, this condition has high tendencies of reoccurring after a few years down the line. An individual suffering from this condition is prone to having total hair loss. Another hair pigmentation is commonly known as Alopecia Universalis. When the condition progresses to this stage, it becomes almost impossible for grown hair to remain on the scalp. Even after the hair grows, they end up falling out again. The degree of hair loss or the extent of growth is different among all persons. Causes Of Alopecia Areata You should know that this hair loss condition is autoimmune; it is an involuntary action of the immune system against healthy cells. Sometimes, our immune system becomes hyperactive

Different Treatment Options For Alopecia Sadly, there is currently no known cure or perfect fix for Alopecia Areata. However, over the decades, medical researchers and traditional experts have figured out ways to help the hair regain its strength. When these remedies are applied, they help the head of hair recover quickly and stops potential hair loss by the individual. Let’s look through the various treatment options for Alopecia.

• Anthralin (Dritho-scalp) simply helps you boost your hair growth while irritating the skin cells.

follicles. Hair follicles are part of the human scalp structured for hair growth. A direct impact of the immune system on these tender follicles results in them shrinking, hence, stops producing hair. Further research has helped us believed that persons with a genetic history of Rheumatoid Arthritis or Type I diabetes often have this condition.

• Minoxidil is a popular over-thecounter medication to be applied directly to the scalp, beard, and eyebrows two times every day. Feedback shows that the medication is incredibly safe but could take up to a year to get the desired results. • Topical Immunotherapy is a lasting treatment method used in bringing back to life your hair growth. In this process, active chemicals like diphencyprone are rubbed directly to the skin to ignite an itchy rash. In the space of six months, you can expect regrowth with the condition that you always apply the treatment. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ SCALP NY } } { SHIFT+CONTROL “When a person is diagnosed with Alopecia, it means the immune system had a ‘no mercy’ combat on their hair follicles.”

Oral Treatments Nowadays, we have trusted oral treatments like Cortisone tablets used in treating chronic Alopecia. However, you might want to get a doctor’s appointment scheduled to be informed of its side effects and prescription. Other alternatives like Cyclosporine and methotrexate are options available to persons looking to maintain Alopecia. These medications help to suppress the response of the immune system against your hair follicles. However, they should not be ingested over a long period due to side effects like lymphoma, increased blood pressure, and kidney damage. Also, in men, male pattern baldness results in permanent hair loss in all ages.

• Probiotics Scalp Micropigmentation Treatment The above treatment options and method could cost you a fortune to achieve good results. However, unlike the others that aren’t so reliable, scalp micropigmentation offers men, women, and children suffering from areata alopecia a guaranteed, pocket-friendly, and safe treatment method. Just like tattooing your skin, the scalp micropigmentation for alopecia procedure involves the injection of pigmented dots to the scalp. Scalp micropigmentation helps cover

Conclusion Scalp micropigmentation has always been the perfect solution for people with alopecia symptoms and also self-esteem issues. With the scalp micropigmentation treatment option, they are guaranteed to keep on with their day-to-day activities without thinking about their hair loss.

Natural Treatments Before the discovery of the above medical and oral treatment methods, our forefathers had alternative therapies in battling Alopecia. Let’s take a quick run through them. Shall we? • Ingesting topical gels and aloe vera drinks • Microneedling • Engaging in Low-level laser therapy • Aromatherapy • Frequent use of vitamins like biotin and zinc • Acupuncture • Applying onion juice directly to the scalp • Rubbing oils like peppermint, tea tree, lavender, and rosemary on your scalp • Subscribing to an anti-inflammatory diet which allows you to feed majorly on vegetables and meats. 298


Benefits Of Scalp Micropigmentation For People With Alopecia We’d try looking at how scalp micropigmentation for Alopecia can help people suffering from all types of Alopecia. At this stage, it would be best to note that scalp micropigmentation isn’t a direct fix for alopecia areata. However, it only acts as an illusion to its symptoms. This is enough reasons to choose scalp micropigmentation when treating your alopecia symptoms. With scalp micropigmentation, your symptoms do not disappear at the very instant; they are only concealed.

the hair loss with the standard skin color caused by alopecia totalis and androgenic Alopecia, which mostly results in male pattern baldness. This scalp micropigmentation for alopecia procedure helps create a replica as though the hair had been recently shaved from your scalp. Alopecia scalp micropigmentation is one of the best options, if not the best, in treating all cases of Alopecia, including androgenic Alopecia.

Since the scalp micropigmentation method covers the entire scalp, the effect of alopecia areata isn’t as evident as it used to be anymore. All traces of hair loss as a result of the affected hair follicles are concealed with the scalp micropigmentation treatment. Frequently Asked Questions What do Dermatologists do For Alopecia? Dermatologists may recommend corticosteroids injections or scalp micropigmentation to promote natural hair growth for patients suffering from Alopecia.







2851 MILTON AVE SOLVAY, NY 13209 (800) 236-6792 WWW.SCALPNY.COM





Goodbye 2020 and hello 2021. Welcome to the year of good vibes and working on what we realized we needed to work on for this very year. What do you claim? What will you manifest? We claim this year not for “new year new me” (the classic), but for happiness. For chasing dreams-not waiting for them to happen. For change in this world for the better. Equality. Respect. Love. Health. Career. Beauty. Relationships. We manifest this for nobody but ourselves.

for trying new things. Screw them. Stop holding back because you’re afraid of what’s on the other side. It takes being uncomfortable to find true comfort. What happens if you fail or have a blue moment? You won’t be successful

2020 was a year of watching, learning, and preparing. The thirty second countdown to the ball dropping3..2..1-we reflected on the past and took a glimpse through our imagination into this year. Any fake Psychic or weak Therapist could tell you your future will be bright. Bright is not acceptable. Bright is not enough. Our future will be extraordinary. What you don’t like about you..change. Get out of your comfort zone. If you can not? Surround yourself with people who will push you. Stay away from people who ask the “what ifs” and make you feel concerned

if you don’t experience failure. Stop putting so much pressure on yourself. Unclench your jaw, relax your shoulders, inhale, exhale. They say the strongest people can cry, fall, scream, but when they’re done they always rise and move forward. Take back your power. Self development looks like you focus on productivity,

abundance, organization, and health so you can have emotional intelligence, self love, compassion, and peace. What self development actually is, is to focus on emotional intelligence, self love, compassion and peace so that you can have productivity, abundance, organization and health. You deserve the time and space to feel your feelings. I’m no Therapist...and I’m certainly not a Doctor... but have some self compassion. Keep a journal. Eat something delicious. Meditate. Talk to someone you love whether it’s a person or a furry friend. Blast music that you will shake your butt to. Keep your body moving. Try something new. Setting boundaries keeps you balanced, improves your relationships, promotes self compassion, and inspires others. Don’t spend another year doing the same thing. You matter. Your dreams matter. Extraordinary opportunities are coming. You are beautiful. Keep your conscious clear. Manifest it. You will get everything you want because you attract it, just like magic. So...what’s your motive? ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021




PERFORM A PERSONAL YEAR-END REVIEW Performing a year-end review is important to help you gain perspective as you stride into 2021. Reflection is still worth it, especially if very little went your way this year. In a year when nothing went as planned or expected, you can still reflect on what went well and what didn’t. I encourage you to do a personal year-end review. Yes, a boat-load of unexpected circumstances arose. A lot of what we experienced this year was disappointing, depressing and traumatic. AND there were also some really amazing moments and wins --- good things did happen in 2020, you just have to be open to that side of the coin too. Some of the good that occurred may have been the result of strategic, intentional and deliberate planning and pivoting. Some of it may be well timed serendipity. There were other moments that were a result of the universe reminding of its all-encompassing goodness and creative energy. We can still look back at our lives in 2020 objectively IF we are willing to take ownership of how we proceed. This is part perspective, part intention and part objective honesty. Assuming responsibility for the problems that exist in our lives and accepting reality as it is are choices. How we proceed once we’ve assumed responsibility is also a choice. I wholeheartedly agree, 304


that the options and choices we have right now are far from perfect or ideal. However, if you have time to read this post, you likely have the freedom and privilege of choice. YEAR END REVIEW It is quite likely that next year, 2021 will be similar to this year in that there will still be a pandemic that will impact the way we live. The biggest difference between 2020 and 2021 is that you will

REFLECT ON THE PAST YEAR To start your year-end review, look at each month and identify your Wins & Learning Opportunities for each month. Look through your planner, journal, photos, social media — wherever it may be that you captured snapshots and moments of the past year… Reflect, look back to see where you are going. This review is a little different than the 2019 year-end review, this year, we are adding in gratitude. Pull out a notebook or journal and get started. What are you grateful for? L e a r n i n g opportunities WHAT TO CONSIDER

have a better idea of what to expect. It is quite likely that the choices we will have will be far from ideal, but they will be our choices to make. For now, let’s just do a quick review of 2020 • What went well, or better than expected? • What didn’t go well or as planned? • What we can learn from our experiences? • How can we improve our outcomes moving forward?

• Did you notice any patterns that pop up? • Did you notice certain people around/ involved with good choices or bad decisions? • Any activities that showed up over and over again? Why? • Were there any changes in your relationships? • Big travel? If you traveled, how did it differ from previous years? • Were any plans thwarted? How did you adapt or pivot your plans? Or did you just let them go? • Did you learn new skills? • Where did you draw the most inspiration from? • What was your biggest challenge? • What was your biggest accomplishment? • What did you do to adapt to live through a pandemic? How will you




{ THE{ LITTLE BLACK BUDDHA } SHIFT+CONTROL } “How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.” -Wayne Dyer

Describe this past year in one word. YOUR 2020 GOALS & INTENTIONS For each goal you made this year, rank on a scale of 1-10 how well you did with “1” being a non-starter to “10” being a goal you crushed. Reflect on how the goal played out, what worked, what didn’t? What were your barriers? What can you do to remove those barriers in the future?

• What relationships grew this year? • What relationships need more attention? • When was someone a true friend to you this year? • Did you show up for someone else when they needed your presence? How did this feel (fed your soul or burdensome)? • Are there any relationships that no longer serve you that you need to let go of?

For a more in-depth review of the past year, check out, How To Perform An In Depth Year End Review. “How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.” -Wayne Dyer Now more than ever, it is evident that the relationships and connections that are most important to you have to be nurtured. If it weren’t for my family, friends and the communities that I am a part of, I would have been truly lost during this pandemic. As human beings, I think our relationships and connections are bound in our ability to survive. Here are some prompts you can use to reflect on your relationships. • Who are you most grateful for right now? 306


COMPASSION & GRACE “Skip the religion and politics, head straight to the compassion. Everything else is a distraction.” -Talib Kweli This year, I have found over and over that granting generous amount of grace to everyone I encountered and interacted with, including myself. I think that we can all agree that we are all experiencing challenges in one way or another, everyone

is going through something right now. It seems disingenuous to continue and go on as if everything is “Ok” because it clearly is not. Keeping in mind that we are all living in this extraordinary moment that can allow for much more compassion and patience. • Did anything happen that you regret this year? • Write yourself a note (or letter) forgiving yourself. • Try to let go and move on. • What are you holding onto that you’d like to let go of in the upcoming year? • Are there people in your life that you need to forgive? How can you begin that process? REACH OUT, LEARN MORE For deeper insights on how to build a well lived life, change careers or figure out what your superpowers are, contact Little Black Buddha today. Learn more about our services. If you are really ready to level-up and are ready to commit to serious change in your life. We are opening a new cohort of Your Next Chapter, you will evolve to the next best version of you if you invest in yourself. Don’t do it alone.




{ WELLNESS 360 }


For some, the holidays are the “most wonderful time of the year.” For others, it is a time full of anxiety, overeating, and stress. Throw in a pandemic, and it intensifies the feelings of isolation, depression, and anxiety. Living a healthy lifestyle and keeping your immunity strong through the holidays can be tricky with high social contact levels, elevated stress levels, poor eating choices, and lack of time. Living healthy through the seasons can be achievable by taking a few tips from the Wellness professionals.

sickness, chronic fatigue, and anxiety. Your sleep cycle influences your daily hormone release, controlling your hunger and satiety throughout the day. Holiday stress can decrease your quality of sleep. Restless sleep can lead to a negative feedback loop creating more daily stress. It is essential to use good sleep hygiene, and adopt stress reduction techniques throughout your day to improve your sleep patterns, improve your immunity and mood during this holiday season.

TIP #1: EXERCISE I know that fitting exercise into your already overloaded schedule can seem impossible. If you choose to neglect your exercise regimen, you are doing yourself a huge miss service. Taking that time to destress and unwind can be the most productive time on your schedule. The benefits of exercise far surpass the benefits of last-minute shopping, latenight cocktails, or extra hours at work. Exercise can Decrease your stress - Promote healthy weight - Improve your energy - Aid in healthy sleep cycles All of which will improve your immunity, mood, and stress levels during the season. Busy schedule? You do not have to work out an hour a day to get these great benefits. Moderate intensity exercise in as little as 25 min a day will still get you the recommended minutes per week. Cardiovascular workouts are great to burn those extra calories, however strengthening exercise will build muscle, tone your body, improve posture, and build stronger, healthier bones. The stronger your muscles, the more calories your body will burn at rest. So, keep your workouts on your schedule; your body and mind will thank you.

TIP #3: ADOPT MINDFUL HABITS Adopting mindful habits will allow you to not only survive but thrive this holiday season. Mindful practices bring conscious awareness to your day, choosing to take time

TIP #2: GET YOUR REST Studies show that even one night of latenight hours can significantly decrease your immunity and encourage weight gain. Add on that extra glass of holiday cheer, and you have the perfect storm for 308


TIP #4 EAT ON PURPOSE The holidays are full of cookies, pies, and alcohol of plenty. We tend to eat more mindless when the cookies and candies are all around. Mindful eating comes down to honoring your hunger, not your urges. It is bringing awareness to why you are eating, hungry, bored, stressed, etc. Mindful eating is about eating on purpose, eating for fuel, and eating without stressful distractions. It is ok to eat the cookies, pies, and treats, just in moderation and on purpose. Permitting ourselves to splurge on the holidays can lead to overall discomfort and long-term health complications. Weight gain, even temporary, can lead to joint pain, digestive issues, and an overall feeling of malaise. Here are some great tips for eating over the holidays. TIP #1 Eat your carbs with some fiber and healthy fats. This keeps your blood sugar levels stable, making you less likely to binge on sugar. TIP #2: Put some club soda or seltzer in your cocktail. This decreases the amount of alcohol consumption, and you are less likely to fill your glass with sugary mixers.

for yourself, reflect on your surroundings, and be grateful for your blessings. Start with practicing gratitude and celebrate friends and family this year. Even with disappointments or setbacks, there are still plenty of things to be grateful for in life. Meditate, take a few minutes to breathe, on purpose. Take 5-10 minutes every day and sit, focus on your breath, and recharge that battery. Finally, practice acceptance. Trying to control the actions of others will lead to resentment and disappointment. Accepting people for who they are and not what the “should be” will allow you to enjoy all of your dynamic family personalities. These simple habits will allow you to enjoy the holiday storms with peace and rest.

TIP #3: Get adequate sleep. This will support your hormones that control your metabolism, hunger, and satiety. You can stay healthy and happy during the holiday season. Wellness is not about perfection; it’s about making conscious decisions to better your state of wellbeing. Wellness 360 works to educate you and support your individual health needs. We use our physical therapy background to provide you with evidence-based exercises and education for your optimum health. We aim to manage, prevent, or reverse your disease diagnosis through exercise and lifestyle modifications. You can learn more through www.wellness360fitness. com. Until then, have a safe and healthy holiday season!






It’s a new year and time to set priorities. Many of you have made your New Year’s Resolutions and have already thrown i n the towel and given up. You feel yourselves at the bottom of the ocean drowning. With very l ittle or no energy you don’t know how to begin to come afloat. You need a l ife saver, and to be guided i n the best direction so that you can again emerge from the water’s surface, fight the current and feel your best.

● Parasites ● Candida ● Lyme disease ● Parkinson’s ● Cancer ● Fibromyalgia ● Irritable bowel ● Obesity ● Hormonal Imbalance ● Depression, anxiety

Whether i t’s from the environment, food we eat, air we breathe or water we drink, we are exposed daily to many different toxins. We can reduce our exposure, but we can’t entirely stop toxins from entering our body because there are so many of them polluting our planet. Our i nfrared saunas, i onic foot spas and VibroAcoustic sound frequency chairs help balance the body’s natural energy system. Our spa equipment i s safe, gentle and effective i n naturally healing the body. Potential Health Benefits from the following l isted conditions with our detox program: ● Joint Pain, Arthritis ● Chronic Fatigue, l ow energy ● Foggy Brain, Poor Concentration ● Sleeplessness ● Poor Circulation ● Heavy Metal Toxicity ● Allergies ● Eczema, Psoriasis 310


● Weak Immune System ● Cellular Acidosis (Ph i s too high) ● And many more Why is it important to Detoxify? The Human body has a unique capability to heal i tself. When functioning properly, i t can kill i nvading viruses and bacteria, destroy cancer cells and prevent virtually all disease. The problem faced today i s more and more people are suffering from a wide range of i llnesses. Today’s modern society has created what many health care practitioners refer to as an

epidemic. We have created what we now call environmental i llness. Environmental i llness i s perpetuated by current western medicine attempting to treat the symptom and not the underlying cause. Natural health care practitioners and physicians, who specialize i n i ntegrative medicine, recognize the need for detoxification. Although the human body was designed to handle a relatively l arge amount of toxins, our modern environment i s contaminated to the point that most people need assistance to regain and maintain optimum health. Our bodies are consistently overloaded with toxins and need the extra help to rid the body of these extra burdens.This i s where our detox program comes i n. Whether you are i n good health and j ust want to feel extraordinary, or i f you are currently suffering from chronic problems or an undiagnosed i llness, our detox program can i mprove your overall health and wellbeing. We’ve created a new 6 week DETOX program that will make you feel great while removing toxins from your body. Each week will consist of 2 visits 3-4 days apart. Your visit will begin with some much needed alone time i n our i nfrared saunas which i nclude Chromotherapy. After sweating out some built up toxins you will relax i n our VibroAcoustic sound frequency chairs while using our i onic foot spas for 30 minutes. Every two weeks your i nfrared sauna visits will i ncrease by




{ NURTURING HANDS } “Whether i t’s from the environment, food we eat, air we breathe or water we drink, we are exposed daily to many different toxins.”

fifteen minutes ( week 1&2 30 minute sauna, week 3&4 45 minute sauna and week 5&6 60 minute sauna ) HOW INFRARED SAUNAS CAN HELP WITH DETOXIFICATION Infrared saunas are one of the few mediums that provide i nfrared heat i n a controlled environment. Infrared heat i s an i nvisible electromagnetic wave with a wavelength longer than that of visible light that helps improve blood flow. SAUNAS cause vigorous sweating and an i ncreased heart rate, similar to the effects triggered by moderate exercise. Through sweating we remove harmful toxins. There are scientific studies that support the theory that l ead, mercury, arsenic, among other toxins are released through the excretory pathway of sweat. If you cannot tolerate the heat of a conventional sauna, a more accessible way to achieve these effects would be through an i nfrared sauna because they produce the same results at l ower temperatures. Our saunas also i nclude chromotherapy l ights. CHROMOTHERAPY (OR COLOR THERAPY) In chromotherapy (also called color therapy), color and l ight are applied to the body to deliver specific benefits. Every cell i n our bodies has i ts own l evel of vibration, and when our bodies become out of balance, disease occurs. Chromotherapy uses the frequency and vibration of both l ight and color to bring physical and emotional systems back i nto balance. This method of healing, l argely forgotten i n our culture, has been used since the beginning of recorded human history! HOW IONIC FOOT SPAS WORK 312


The soles of our feet, which contain thousands of the l argest pores on the human body, provide an optimal detoxification opportunity. These foot spas emit a very mild electrical current to an electrode array i mmersed i n a neutral (not acidic or alkaline) solution. This process splits water molecules i nto H+ and OH- i ons, which travel through the body, neutralize oppositely charged particles, and pull those neutralized particles out of the body through whatever skin surface i s i n contact with the water. Sediment or residue remaining i n the foot spa upon completion can provide insight into what toxins are present and which areas of the body are affected. VIBROACOUSTIC SOUND FREQUENCY CHAIRS Vibroacoustic Therapy provides positive healing effects for a variety of physical and mental health i ssues. This energy-based, non-invasive treatment approach leverages the body’s composition of more than 70% water. Sound vibrations travel quickly through the body to achieve brain stimulation at a deep, cellular l evel. We currently offer 23 sound frequencies designed to meet different needs and i mpact specific parts of the body. Therapeutic Vibroacoustic stimulation i s gentle and comfortable, and the i ntensity of any frequency can be adjusted at any time during the treatment. NEGATIVE IONS CREATE POSITIVE VIBES For decades scientists have studied the positive benefits of i ncreasing the amount of negative i ons i n a l iving organism’s environment. Studies have shown that increasing negative i ons produces stronger growth i n plants, reduces negative symptoms i n humans and l eaves people with an overall i ncreased

sense of wellbeing. Our toxic modern environment i s generally deficient of beneficial negative i ons (An ion i s a charged particle that forms when an atom gains or l oses an electron). Chemical pollution as well as EMF (electromagnetic frequency) pollution have been stripping our environment of positive energy. This greatly contributes to our bodies being out of balance. We can restore balance by i ncreasing the amount of negative ions i n our environment. Negative i ons are odorless, tasteless, and i nvisible molecules that we i nhale i n abundance i n certain environments. Think mountains, waterfalls, forests, beaches and streams. Our i nfrared saunas and i onic foot spas create an abundance of negative i ons. Once they reach our bloodstream negative ions are believed to produce biochemical reactions that i ncrease l evels of the mood chemical serotonin, helping alleviate depression, relieve stress and boost energy. Trust what your body is telling you. A lot of our client’s feel like they have tried absolutely everything to feel better. Oftentimes, detoxification i s the missing piece to the health and wellness puzzle. A t Nurturing Hands Massage And Saunafied we care about you. We want to be your l ifesaver and cheer you on. We want you to succeed at l iving a healthier l ife by creating healthy habits i n 2021 and beyond. V i s i t o u r We b s i t e w j oin our detox program and let us help you start l iving a happier healthier and more energetic l ife.






FOUR OF THE HOTTEST 2021 SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS AND HOW YOU CAN GET YOUR BRAND ON BOARD! Let’s start the year by covering all of the marketing trends that researchers say will most likely flourish in 2021. As the number of social media users grows every day, it’s more important than ever for brands to stay ahead of trends to keep up with the increasing competition. Based on experts’ analysis of the ever-evolving social media advertising tactics last year, here are some trending marketing opportunities you and your business should take advantage of this year.

Content platform apps such as TikTok have seen such great success in short content that other popular apps like Instagram and Facebook have made updates to provide the means to create specifically short video content on their platforms as well. The average social media user does not have the attention span to watch an advertisement for over 5 minutes, in fact, studies have shown

1.) SHORT-FORM VIDEOS New research shows that when it comes to your video marketing, less is more. According to a recent study by the video creation platform, Animoto, over 76% of small businesses have measured a marked result from the video content they’ve created. Fast and easily consumable content is becoming increasingly popular because these types of advertisements provide high engagement. Due to continuing safety concerns from the global pandemic, stay-at-home orders have influenced more and more people to create and post short-form video content. 316


that audiences respond most to videos that are 90 seconds or less. When it comes to social media advertising, snackable content is the sweet spot for getting the message across to your audience. However, when the message cannot be summed up in such a short time span, businesses have found it helpful to upload a teaser video (typically around 30 seconds to one minute) on their social platforms and then include

a link to their Youtube channel for the actual long-form video. 2.) LIVE VIDEOS FOR BUSINESSTO-BUSINESS MARKETING LIVE video streaming is the act of broadcasting a video in real-time, usually via webcam or mobile device, allowing businesses to directly interact with their audience. Although the LIVE feature is not a new trend, companies have recently started utilizing it for business matters instead of just advertising to clients. By hosting an interactive interview with your company’s experts and opinion leaders, live video streaming helps businesses converse and strategize instantaneously. Even the PR world is utilizing live video feed for virtual press conferences because they can answer questions in real time and it’s an easy capture for news sources to snag the live video content for reference. In response to the demand, a variety of social media platforms have added this aspect, including LinkedIn which recently launched their live video feature that allows companies to answer frequently asked client questions, share company updates, and provide advice for their industry. They allow B2B




{ B.MOR } “Although the LIVE feature is not a new trend, companies have recently started utilizing it for business matters instead of just advertising to clients.”

companies the potential to reach over 600 million professionals with instant engagement. Live video streaming is an inexpensive means of educating and inspiring an existing audience and allows the opportunity to reach out to new people who may not know much about the brand. This approach works so well that according to Livestream for Marketing, 80% of audiences would rather watch live video from a brand than read their blog posts and 73% of B2B companies using live video have reported positive results to their ROI. Social media managers can also monitor audience reactions in real time with the live comments that correspond with the live video feed. Businesses have been using the B2B live stream marketing tactic to share project updates, grow their audience, and present product features. Researchers have found that the best practices for B2B livestreaming have been to stream regularly, promote video streams in advance to increase audience numbers, and encourage users to save the live videos to their business profile in order to catch up on what they missed. 3.) Socially Conscious Related Content Businesses have begun to include awareness about controversial social issues into their marketing strategy. Rather than staying silent (like in the past), brands are speaking up. Users like to form relationships with brands, and recent studies have shown they are more likely to stick with brands that take a stance on divisive issues. In this time of social unrest consumers want 320


to see authenticity and companies are putting this into practice by investing in perspectives from outside experts to maintain the thoughtfulness and sincerity of their messaging. Regardless of the approach, companies should proceed with care when commenting on current events, especially when they involve polarizing topics. In this digital age, consumers can easily comb through a company’s messaging to check which brands are being hypocritical and which ones genuinely care. The past year has proven that inauthenticity drives away audience members. For example, Amazon released a seemingly heartfelt commercial thanking its “heroic” employees and described the company’s dedication to health and safety but received immediate backlash when consumers found out about the employee strikes over workplace safety concerns. Authenticity can easily dissolve into just lip service that businesses hope will make them look like a positive influence without actually having to do anything. To prevent this, marketing teams should use outside sources and collect target audience data to learn what they want to hear when discussing topics like global health and social injustice. When a mistake is made, do not underestimate the power of a sincere apology no matter how long ago the wrongdoing occurred. 4.) E-Commerce will Thrive People are rethinking the way they shop, and due to broader market impacts, consumers are more likely than ever to make cost-effective purchases. As a result, they will rely more on peer reviews for products. Increasingly powerful

social media apps such as Facebook and Instagram have turned to more explicit styles of a “Shop Now” user-interface which will take the consumer social media experience to a whole new level this year. It will become easier for brands to form relationships with social users and allow consumers to share products on the same channel(s) they converse. It’s very important for businesses to enable their ratings and review settings on their Facebook Business Page(s) to allow customers to express their thoughts on a business’ product or service. A study by Absolunet has shown that 87% of e-commerce shoppers believe social media helps them make a shopping decision. As word-of-mouth is the most effective tool for advertisement, potential new audience reach is more likely to increase when they’re able to examine peer insights. Brands need to focus on optimizing their digital experiences across these various e-commerce channel options in order to keep up with strong competition that have already developed a strong foothold in social media e-commerce advertising. These are just a few of the 2021 social media trends to look out for— there’s plenty more but, we believe these take the cake! In summary, be sure to embrace and produce short form videos for you customers, go LIVE on your social feeds on a regular basis, take a genuine stance on a socially conscious related issue, and be sure your social platforms are setup for e-commerce success!





“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” Desmond Tutu When areas experience a disaster such as a flood, fire, tornado, hurricane, earthquake, car accident, or ice storm a plethora of people from everywhere will jump to action to help where they can, doing what they can. Right now during this COVID19 pandemic we are experiencing a mental health, emotional crisis of epic proportions. People are hurting and not doing well. Some of the people who are hurting and struggling emotionally are people who typically were in healthy emotional places. In physical disasters there are visual reminders of what occurred. Houses are destroyed by high winds, forests gone due to fires, cars twisted and crushed. Emotional hurts are invisible, sometimes hidden under a smile or dismissed for a variety of reasons. Yet just like all other disasters they are real, present, and causing pain. Here is a refresher about me and what I do. I head up Kindness Champions while working full time as a social worker and substance abuse counselor in a high school. In addition I have a part-time private therapy practice. When school resumed in the fall, students were coming to school on a hybrid model where they attend classes two days a week in person and the remainder online. We have about 1400 students in the high school I work at. A teenage boy that I have worked with for a few years came to see me one day. His

concern was for others. He told me students in the school were too quiet, including the students who are usually outgoing and positive. He told me they needed help. All of them. This teenage boy is dealing with significant challenges outside of school (and I mean significant), yet his concern was for others. He was seeking input into what he could do to help. A few days ago I met for the first time with a student who broke down crying in a class. This student was feeling overwhelmed and stressed. She had missed some school because her parents had COVID, she was helping with her siblings, and she was missing her friends as they came to school on the days she was learning from home. As we talked it became clear that she had been feeling depressed and anxious for a long time. When I asked her if she had shared it with anyone her answer was no. Why not I asked? She did not want to bother anyone. She did not want to upset anyone because she knew everyone is dealing with so much stress. I then asked her if she would want to know if someone she cares about was struggling emotionally. She said ‘yes’ because she would want to help them. It helped give her an aha moment that for starters we needed to talk to her parents because they would want to know. There are many stories like this for adults too as this is not just a kid issue. Some that I work with, some that I counsel in my private practice, and some that are friends, neighbors, hair dresser, random person at the grocery store. There are stories like

this everywhere for many of us. Sometimes people are unsure of what to do when someone is struggling emotionally. No one wants to say or do the “wrong” thing. I am here to tell you that showing you care in the ways you show you care is always the right thing. Saying you care makes a difference. I am a trained mental health professional. I do not have a perfect package of words to pick from. I don’t. What I do have is a lot of care and love in my heart. What I do have is the willingness, even in my personal life, when I see someone struggling, even though it might feel uncomfortable, to do something. So if you see something, say something. “Never underestimate the difference you can make in the lives of others. Step forward, reach out, and help. Reach out to someone that might need a lift.” Pablo An article in Time Magazine by Jenny Santi “The Secret to Happiness is Helping Others” says “And so we learn early: It is better to give than to receive. The venerable aphorism is drummed into our heads from our first slice of a shared birthday cake. But is there a deeper truth behind the truism? The resounding answer is yes. Scientific research provides compelling data to support the anecdotal evidence that giving is a powerful pathway to personal growth and lasting happiness. Through fMRI technology, we now know that giving activates the same parts of the brain that are stimulated by food and sex. Experiments show evidence that altruism is hardwired in the brain—and it’s pleasurable. Helping others may just be the secret ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


YOU MATTER } } { {SHIFT+CONTROL “Never underestimate the difference you can make in the lives of others. Step forward, reach out, and help. Reach out to someone that might need a lift.”

to living a life that is not only happier but also healthier, wealthier, more productive, and meaningful.” Here are some tips for your helper self: 1. Start with you. Yep you. If you are struggling emotionally and not telling anyone because you don’t want to “bother” them tell someone. It could be your partner, brother, sister, best friend, someone you are dating, your Doctor. People want to know when we are struggling, just like we want to know when they are struggling. Get help and support for you. 2. Take care of you. Eat healthy, get some exercise, make sure you get your zzzz’s and some down time. I can feel when I am not at my helping best and depleted. When that happens I make sure to do some things I love to do to. This fills up my energy so I am emotionally present in all areas of my life, professional and personal. 3. Reach out to people in your life. Check in on your peeps. If something does not seem right with a person near and dear to your heart trust your gut. Take an action that says I care about you for others. Send a card, a text, or call. If money allows make a care package just because. There does not need to be an event that happens to show you care and appreciate another human being. Be the event that shows care and brings joy. 4. When you are out and about look up and say hello. Give someone a 324


face mask smile (our eyes do light up when we smile). Be helpful. Hold the door for someone. If you physically can park farther away from the store so others can park closer. In traffic let other cars in ahead of you. If you can pay for the car behind you. Do something. 5. Help in your community. You can volunteer in many ways from writing letters or calling seniors, stocking food pantries, walking dogs in shelters and building houses, and delivering food to people. If you have the finances give money or food items. Help your neighbor. Do something. 6. Safety experts tells us to pay attention to our surroundings when we are out and about. I use that model in my daily living. I pay attention to the people I came in contact with in my surroundings. Even those times I am at the grocery store feeling rushed, and a stranger wants to tell me a story about their life I will take the time to listen. I have learned that when I don’t take the time to hear someone out I feel crappy after. I have time. You do too. Am I perfect at this. Nope. Yet I really try my best to do my best. When Ronald Reagan said “We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone” he was spot on. So amazing helpers our hurting world needs your helper. By doing more for others it will help you feel better in all areas of your life. Recently in Minnesota when a man at the drive thru paid for the meal of the car behind him it ended up that over 900 cars bought meals for others. One

person began a ripple of kindness that impacted many people who continued that ripple. Start your ripple in your surroundings. We all have helper ability within us. Your helper self can make a difference. I have committed to upping my helper self, to creating more joychains of good. To do my little bit of good where I am. Want to join me? May your helper be with you.








When it comes to showing love to the pen, there is only one woman that I can think of to do so. That woman, who loves to share a wise word from God, a woman who has pushed through what many others would have given up in, is Author Demina Stewart.

how it was God who had given her the entries to share in the Devotional. What Demina shared in her book are lessons she learned along her journey

Demina is the author of Daily Inspirations, which was released in the spring of 2020 in the midst of Covid-19. After mulling over her manuscript for two-years, she had finally put her fear to the side, faith to the forefront and pushed until her book was done! Before she was able to release her book, she first had to go through a hard, life changing, faith building trial. That trial was a trail that led to having to undergo open heart surgery. Not only was the heart surgery taxing on her physically, but she had to find a way to stay afloat in the mist of what her body had to go through. To stay in a positive place with her thoughts on a bright future despite what she was facing, she turned to her faith in God. By doing so, she found her strength in her devotion to God.

and inspirational insight into the word of God with two friends.

Speaking to her one evening she explained

It would be a long road to a healing she

was sure she would receive. However, it was met with other laps in the failure of her heart. It would require another surgery which set her back. Yet, through it all, she kept her daily devotions to God. Demina inspires me because she rocked the pen while battling for her health. She did so when odds were stacked against her. She did not allow her physical issues to be the reason why she could not release the knowledge that was given her. Unlike many others that would have given up and made excuse for why they could not proceed, Demina used her “down time” to create what she knew needed to be shared… her devotional. If you are in a place of uncertainty, a place where you need to find a reason NOT to give up, it will be found in your writing the certainty you need and the reason to keep going. As an author, myself, I learned that the times I did not want to write were the moments a great release. Release of frustration, hurt, pain, and the sharing of joy that I wanted to keep to myself. Writing, if for personal reasons will help clear your mind of those things that clog it. It is also a form of therapy. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ WOMEN WHO ROC THE}PEN } { SHIFT+CONTROL “.After mulling over her manuscript for two-years, she had finally put her fear to the side, faith to the forefront and pushed until her book was done! “

sharing of joy that I wanted to keep to myself. Writing, if for personal reasons will help clear your mind of those things that clog it. It is also a form of therapy. Here are a few tips to rocking your own pen: 1. Journaling. Setting side, a specific time or day to layout your most inner thoughts will allow you to express how you feel without the fear of judgment. Free Writing. Grab a piece of paper or use your laptop and just begin to write or type. Allow unfiltered, unstructured thoughts to come out. When you reread it, you will be surprised at what is on the paper or your Word/Google document. 3. Ask Questions. Discover the Answer. This is my favorite exercise with writing. Write down five questions that you wished someone would ask you and then discover the answer. To discover the answer will require you to be honest with yourself and to search your heart, soul, and spirit. One question I asked myself and then discovered the answer to was: Why do I fail at relationships?


inspire them, out of those text daily inspirations was birthed. Who or what motivated you? My grandmother has been a great motivator for me, she is a fighter full of wisdom and love. She told me I could do anything also my children I want them to be inspired by what I have done knowing they can do this plus more. What inspired you to write your first book? For over a year, I would send text message to two friends. The daily text messages were to inspire and encourage them with the world of God. I would often go back over the text messages and become encouraged myself. So, I thought if these texts blessed us, they could bless others.

Now, let us get into a conversation with Author Demina Stewart.

What does it mean to be an author? It means that I have checked off one of my goals. It shows me that I can do all things because Christ helped me make it. What message do you want your readers to take away when reading your books? That no matter what stage they are in life, be it good or bad, they can always depend on the Savior Jesus to guide them. Not all bad days come to destroy you.

How did your journey as an author began? I always dreamed of writing a book. The dream did not manifest until I found myself encouraging two friends that had hit a rough patch in life. I decided to send them daily text to

Demina Stewart is a Rochesterian that loves to empower everyone she meets. Her love for people can be stems from the love she saw her grandmother put into people. It was this passion that she pursued a career in nursing, which she absolutely


loves. In her spare time Demina loves being with her three children and her two grandsons and socializing with friends. Demina is a WOMAN WHO ROC the PEN! Who will be next? I am Ebony Nicole, the writing coach and publishing engineer. You can rock out with me and gain helpful, useful tips to becoming a published author by searching for me on IG @ coachebonynicole








Writing is a skill. Others call it a job. No matter what you call it, writing is important. Whether a person is writing to inform, entertain, to explain, or even persuade. No matter the reason, there’s always a reason and purpose when it comes to writing. The more you do it, the better you become at it and the easier it becomes for you to do. There are many timeless publications, and influential writers that are still referenced today. Their writing was so important, and so brilliant that they’re still revered.

feelings, tell their stories, and inspire others. Journaling and poetry are examples of writing as expression.

4.Entertain: The book you’re writing is going to be a means of entertainment (fingers crossed)! Writing a book is a huge ordeal, and your words will provoke various emotions. A book can be as entertaining as watching a TV show or playing sports. People love to read. So, give them something exciting to read about.

1.Educational writing is a means to teach and inform. Applied knowledge is power. Where would humanity be without the written word? Probably not as advanced as it is. It’s is a tool of education. Who doesn’t want to be smarter and more knowledgeable? 2. Expressive writing can be therapeutic as a tool of self-expression. Millions of people use written words to share their

upon said topics. Whether it’s a newspaper, magazine, blog, e-book, or even a book, explanation through writing has always been a popular, and valuable way to explain ideas, thoughts, or information.

3.Explanatory writing has always been a great way to expound

This list is not exhaustive, rather a snapshot of different types of writing. Choose what works best for you and start writing. There is no genre that is better or worse than another. Don’t limit yourself to one genre, try a few or try them all then narrow it down to your favorites.



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With the month of resolutions almost behind us, I am looking forward to a month full of love coming up! Is that not what February brings to mind? With a cute little cherub shooting his arrows of love? But what do we know of this mythical baby? Believe it or not, the cherub, or Cupid as we know him, started out as a man like God. A heartthrob, that was very powerful and... dangerous! We can trace him back to 700 BCE with the name Eros which is a Greek name for desire. He was the son of Aphrodite and Eros would use his power to play with mortal hearts. Eros was feared to make people fall in love only to cause tragedy! A far cry from the little boy represented as a cherub of true love we know today! So, what changed? The social status of women changed. They realized that Eros was linked to his mother, which in turn controlled his every move. This gave mortals less to fear, since Eros would only act on his mother’s wishes. By the time the Romans became involved, Eros began to be seen as a cute little kid. They are the ones that began calling him Cupid. Setting the stage for a cute little boy causing people to simply fall in love. Abandoning the idea of him using love as a tragedy... although some may still think it is. Lol. Centuries later, Cupid was depicted in Renaissance paintings. By 18th century and turn of 19th century

Valentine’s Day was becoming popular with Cupid linked to it, for his power of making people fall in love. But what caused Valentine’s Day? It is believed to be commemorating a Saint. However, there were 3 different Saint Valentine, and no one knows for sure which one it was intended for, for all 3 died as martyrs. In each case, a defender of love. One of the Saints, an imprisoned Valentine, sent his love a letter right before his death signing it “From your Valentine”. An expression we use to this day. Some think the date of Valentine’s Day falls on the anniversary of his death. While others theorize the Christian Church used this date to Christianize the Pagan fertility holiday, Lupercalia. A rather crude and bloody festival where they would sacrifice a goat for fertility and a dog for purification. Strip their hides, slapping women and crops with the bloody hides! Later in the day, women would put their names in urns and the village bachelors would choose a name. Pairing up with the woman for a year which eventually lead to marriage. Hmmm... puts a whole new meaning to “My Bloody Valentine” don’t you think? Valentine’s Day picked up over the years, starting with simple greetings, to elaborate poems expressing one’s love. Did you know that before 1840

it was expensive to send your Valentine a card or poem? However, after a reduction in postal rates, after the invention of the postage stamp, the number of Valentine’s cards increased. It was easier to send anonymously, but also less personal. With the need of Valentine’s cards, over 3,000 women were employed in manufacturing them. Charles Dickens termed it as “Cupid’s Manufactory”. Ester A. Howland began selling the first mass-produced Valentine’s cards. She is known as the “Mother of the Valentine”. Making elaborate creations known as “scrap” with colorful pictures, real lace and ribbons. Eventually, as time went by, we added trinkets, flowers and candy. What I like today is how we’ve embraced Valentines into a full month of love! Showing love not only to a significant other, but to others as well. You can see this in some of our National Holidays for the month of February as I list a couple examples for you below... February 5th - Shower With A Friend Day - Who of us do not LOVE the idea of saving water? Lol. What a perfect way to celebrate the day while “showering” a friend with some love by the love of - saving water! Makes perfect and logical sense to me! February 13th - Galentine Day - I have to admit, I had never heard of this one, but I do love the concept! A day designed to show our gal friends ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


TAMMY’S TIDBITS }} {{ SHIFT+CONTROL “Love is in the air and if it is not ... put it there! No one ever said love would be easy.”

a little extra love. While shopping for our significant other, why not pick up something for the ones who listen ...when things with our significant other is less than perfect! Do they not need to be shown love for dealing with you while in love? February 14th – Valentine’s Day - A special shout out to my husband, Paul. Cherub hit us with his arrow 17 years ago, and we’ve never looked back. Know that my candle is strong enough to help keep yours lit, keep fighting the fight - I love you too much for you not to. February 15th - Single Awareness Day - I would be remiss in not mentioning 336


this day. To some, this may feel as a cruel joke. While others - embrace the day, enjoying their independence! As long as there is a YOU, there is ALWAYS someone LOVING YOU. Love yourself! Be kind to yourself! Treat yourself to a special dinner, some flowers, even some chocolates! Point is ... the relationship you have with yourself is just as important (and tough) as a relationship with someone else! February 20th National Love Your Pet Day - When they give us so much unconditional love, why not find more days to celebrate their love? I’m all about having an excuse to give my babies extra lovings. They may not have a clue to

why there may be extra attention this day, but they’ll absolutely love it! Love is in the air and if it is not ... put it there! No one ever said love would be easy. No one ever said Cupid’s arrow wouldn’t hurt. But what we must remember is ... love makes you feel alive! Love for our significant other, love for our friends, love for our animals and more important love for ourselves! Not every day will love for just one be the reason, but love for all. Love is what gets us out of bed in the morning and the motivation to celebrate each day. The month of love may be coming upon us, but in reality, it is always with us. Continue to love the loving!



I was raised to apply myself and do my best to all that life requests from me. My family always encouraged me to look past the stigmas that women will not succeed in a man’s world. I worked hard and soon was climbing the corporate ladder, I quickly learned I faced additional hurdles as a woman and a lesbian in business. The challenge was often stressful which led to the uncertainty of what my future held. My drive was so intense to make it to the top that no matter the obstacles, stopping was not an option. Until my journey with severe anxiety started in 2005. My first major setback was losing my mom to a heart attack, she was 49 years old and I was only 25. This brought a lot of devastation in my heart. I took a week off from work to grieve and returned with a renewed vigor. Recommitting myself to my work not only helped put my mind at ease, but it also fulfilled a sense of purpose. Shortly after returning to work I was offered a General Manager position with my own restaurant. My life became beautifully stressful with the responsibilities of managing a restaurant with over 50 crew members. I decided it was time to be my authentic self by “coming out of the closet”. Not only did I crave to live my true life, but my son deserved a happy and honest life as well. I felt like the pieces were finally coming together and I was ready for what the future held. Until a new kind of stress happened in June of 2005. I was the passenger in a stopped vehicle 338


on the freeway when suddenly we were hit from behind by a semi-truck going over 65mph. The witnesses said he never hit the brakes. After striking my car, the truck proceeded another 100 yards hitting 7 other cars, coming to a stop on the side of the freeway and blowing up in front of us. I remember feeling like I was on the set of a movie being filmed, this experience was surreal. Everyone escaped with their life, but the physical and mental ramifications were yet to come. I started noticing a pattern of sweating, heavy breathing, heart racing, shaking, and multiple bathroom trips. What in the world is wrong with me?!? Every time I stepped out my front door, I had a sense of doom. I found myself calling in sick, showing up late, and or leaving early for work. Obviously, this “sickness” had begun to affect not only myself but the people who relied on me. It became so prevalent I physically could not leave my home because of these challenges. My body and mind were suffering, I had no idea how to cope with these new health issues. Multiple doctors’ appointments led to few answers of my physical illness. My coping mechanisms included a combination of sleeping pills, alcohol, and comfort food. My life had turned upside down. In January of 2007 I called my boss and quit my job. The day I was told I was suffering from severe anxiety was a bittersweet moment. I felt a sense of relief that my physical and mental symptoms had a name, but also sad. Having never struggled with anxiety before I thought my health

would be like this forever. I could not help but think of the stigmas about mental illness and how this will affect my future. For the next decade I was in a constant battle with myself. I continued with doctor and therapy appointments, working hard to overcome pain and the fear of leaving my home. It took every bit of energy I had to focus on my autistic son and learn how to lead him through his journey of life. I look back and often wonder how I was able to guide another human in life when I felt I had no control over mine. Although my battle continued, I had a strong support system. I was slowly able to regain a sense of control over this illness and my confidence started to rise. I had a new desire to be the one in charge of my body, and the knowledge of what I was experiencing gave me a sense of power. I decided to join an online schooling environment attempting to learn all I could about anxiety and mental illness. Through this phase, I was often tested. I was able to recognize when anxiety started to take over and was able to use the resources my support system had given me. Accomplishing these small tasks helped me to prepare for the next big event that happened in our life. In 2011 my wife was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer, she was 29. We now entered a battle for her life. Being a caregiver was difficult because my anxiety started to rear its ugly head again. I knew I could not allow this to




{ SHIFT+CONTROL { HIP HEMP } } “My journeys have helped me to be confident in sharing my experiences with others.�

happen. I reached out to local nonprofit organizations and utilized their support during the challenges that we were facing. One thing anxiety taught me is to take advantage of all resources available. I could be tired at the end of the day with the weight of all our stressors on my shoulders, or I could lean on others and have time to relax before getting up and battling life all over again. Once my wife was in remission, we knew we needed to give back to the community and help support others. In 2013 I joined a non-profit organization whose focus is to support cancer survivors, fund new research and educate the community about the importance of preventive screening. Joining this group of volunteers pushed me out of the comfort zone that anxiety had trapped me in. Helping people gave me a sense of purpose. Over the next few years of volunteering, I continued to grow and take on more responsibilities becoming the Portland event lead. My own personal journey was tested often. I continued to work on my self-esteem by pushing myself to be in uncomfortable situations for the greater good of fighting cancer. Little did I know this would lead me to new heights. Angela Duncan, 2019 Local News Interview It was about this time, Mary Jane Haake the president of Hip Hemp came into my life. I was so impressed with this talented powerful woman who chose her path of tattooing breast 342


cancer survivors over their scars to aid in their sense of normalcy. The day Mary Jane called me asking if I would become a part of the Hip Hemp team, which would be helping women, I jumped on that chance. The excitement quickly became scary and I found myself sliding into self-doubt. I worried that I would disappoint her and a community of women needing our help. I could not let these fears stop me.

successful for us. Our goal is to help others, but in fact we are also helping ourselves.

Mary Jane never gave up on me and continued to push me beyond my comfort level. She saw a passion in me that I had lost years before. I started with Hip Hemp during the infant stages of the business and I have grown right along with this company.

My story may be like others suffering from anxiety disorders. I decided it was time to share managing my challenges, often still threatened with anxiety. My hope is that others with similar mental/emotional disorders will see that you really can forge ahead in your journeys.

Hip Hemp is designed for those in need of moisturizing, calming and soothing. These products are made from organic materials with antiinflammatory detoxifying analgesic properties. After several years of research, we have found a natural product that helps those of all ages in need of relief. Hip Hemp also offers several blogs with helpful information at

I am now the Area Training Leader for the Oregon and Southwest Washington chapter of The American Cancer Society, I am the Director of Operations for Hip Hemp, I am a wife, I am a mom, and I will continue to beat my anxiety.

My journeys have helped me to be confident in sharing my experiences with others. My business partner, Dante Haruna and I have started a show on YouTube called Armchair Chats. We take this time to discuss different challenges we have faced or continue to face and the type of coping mechanisms that have been

Looking back and embracing my growth I am learning why I landed where I did. It took failures tied to my deep anxiety to lead me into healthier and more successful relationships. I am very thankful that along the way specific people taught me the value of a positive attitude - and yes, to laugh.

How are you doing?




Do any of these apply to you? Check all that apply. o I sit most of the day o I exercise at least three days per week o I love practicing yoga o My hips feel tight o I have knee pain If none of these do, please email me. I want to know what your day looks like! For the rest of us, if you’re working from home there is a good chance you’re doing more sitting which can make your thigh muscles tight and weak. If you are active – running, cycling, doing yoga (like warrior or chair poses) or doing squats and lunges – those muscles can end up tight and strong. The muscles on the fronts of your thighs are a group of four, called the quadriceps or quads. Tight quadriceps can lead to knee pain. The muscles on the backs of your thighs – the hamstrings – can do the same, but it seems like nine times out of then when I see people stretch after a workout, the first thing I see them do is reach for their toes. That is great, keep stretching. But reaching for your toes only stretches the hamstrings and not the quads. Hence our focus for this article. Opening the muscles on the front (anterior side) of your body has an 344


effect not just physically but potentially emotionally, mentally, and energetically; in part because we rarely do it. Many of us, while sitting, have our front body covered up, likely by a desk, table, or screen right now. Dare I even say hunched over. If you are on the more active side, many of us gym rats spend a whole lot of time strengthening the front side of our body. Remember “ready

picture Broadway. A performer on stage standing up tall with feet wide apart, arms outstretched, jazz hands. Total confidence. Now while the overly hunched or tense postures may be extremes, if you are somewhere in the middle it could be that your quads just need a little wake up. It can be a difference experience to feel what it feels like to have those muscles be soft enough to be accessible to you. Here are some yoga postures to try that could benefit you physically and energetically, and help you move and feel better. If you have had tight quads for a while, these could help. Honestly, I love this sequence, it almost always makes me feel better.

position” from Phys Ed class? Think quads engaged, ready to run or jump. Our thigh muscles also get a lot of blood flow when we are stressed – preparing for our fight or flight response. That serves its purpose at times, but do we always want to be that tight and ready to go? When I picture the opposite of both of those positions – hunched or tense – I

As always, check with your doctor before beginning any exercise program. Cleveland Clinic’s definition of chronic pain is pain that lasts longer than six months – but if you are in pain for that long (or I may argue even less) do not hesitate to go to see a specialist to make sure there is nothing else going on beyond your musculoskeletal. Your body might be trying to tell you something. Are you cleared? Then try these.




{ LIFE IN BALANCE } SHIFT+CONTROL “Now while the overly hunched or tense postures may be extremes, if you are somewhere in the middle it could be that your quads just need a little wake up.“

I also like that these postures contain elements of balance. When anything in our body is overly tight or weak – including our mental state – it is hard to balance. Needing to balance can also make your muscles come online faster, instead of letting you fall over, they wake up quickly. You can hold each of these poses for a few breaths, working your way up to ten long breaths. Anytime we are doing static holds with our quads, it can be incredibly uncomfortable – but nothing here should be painful. On a scale of one to ten, sensation somewhere between a five and a seen will do; no need to be at the overstretched 10. If you are experiencing knee pain back off. Also notice if your foot is moving too far to the side of your leg.

as you bend the right knee and keep the left leg straight. Hold for five to ten breaths. Keep both hips in line with one another. Switch sides. 3. Low Lunge. If I’m on a hard floor

5. BONUS. King Arthur’s Pose. This one can be quite intense. If you’re struggling in three and four, work there for a while, because this one can definitely lead to that charley horse sensation. Come back to your low lunge with your right foot forward with some padding under your left knee, kick your left heel to your leg glute, and hold it with your hands if you can. If you cannot catch the foot, it will be more active hamstring strengthening which can also be a wakeup call for the low body. Still, remember to breathe. Switch sides.

Remember to breathe. 1. Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose Variation. This will probably feel more like strengthening than stretching. You can absolutely do this standing with one hand on a wall or chair for balance. Stand on your right leg, lift your left knee up. If you feel proficient here, extend the left leg straight. Switch sides. 2. Speedskater. Step your feet out wide. (If you extend your arms out wide, your ankles can line up about underneath your wrists.) Bring your hands to the ground or a chair. Keep the right knee and toes pointing in the same direction 346


4. Half frog. Lying on your stomach, bring your left arm across the top of your yoga mat. Kick your right heel to your right glute. Hold your ankle with your right hand if you can. Advanced option for those of you with more flexibly shoulders: Bring your right hand to the big toe side of your right foot, bend your right elbow, and lift your right shoulder and elbow up and to spin your right palm forward over the top of your right foot. Switch sides.

or a thin yoga mat, I like to cushion my knee here. From kneeling, step the right foot forward (get your heel on the floor). Keep roughly a right angle in both knees. Press your left thigh forward. If this comes easily, think about tucking your tailbone under slightly. Switch sides.

There is no perfect sequence out there! Check in with yourself and see if you feel good, better or worse after this. To schedule a yoga therapy session with Kaitlyn visit, or call (585) 200-7209 for a no-risk phone consultation.









I think we can all agree to the fact that this past year has been very unusual. Yet many of these things have happened with a deeper purpose. This column was created to bring a sense of community, health, empowerment, family and wisdom about our bodies. After experiencing 2020, I will like to share 5 things that helped me survive physically, emotionally, spiritually and in business world. First of all, Fear….It is an unpleasant feeling triggered by the perception of danger real or imagined. If it becomes something chronic, it can lead to anxiety and other mental health problems. During these past 9 months, many have constantly lived in a state of fear. Fear to get sick, fear to lose loved ones, fear to lose their jobs or means to survive financially, fear to lose their freedom, fear to be secluded or discriminated, etc. These are all very valid reasons to be worried, but we have to understand that fear is a feeling, should not be a state. If you decide to stay in that state of fear, you will become paralyzed and unable to move forward to live your live with the passion and purpose that you were created for. It is very important to be very cautious, but many people found themselves watching the news and social media that bombarded us with constant statistics related to the virus. Every hour, day by day we knew exactly how many positive cases there were, yet, very little investigation was done and worse yet, very little information was given about what science already

knew as tools or recommendations on how to improve our own health and minimize the negative effect in case you came sick with the virus. I feel we were trapped in this doom cloud, divided by our political and social believes like never before. Our communities and country were left in the wilderness of despair. Only those that dared to think a bit different, that wanted to look for more answers, those that wanted to move forward, were the ones asking questions and daring to get out of fear and look toward to the hope, that things will get better at some point. We don’t always have to win, it’s ok to “loose” and/or have set back to a situation, but we should never let the fear be the winner. We should never give up, stop hoping, stop working for our dreams or simply stop living because of fear. As a Christian, I had to anchor myself to the higher hope that God offers everyone that believe, I had to depend even more on my faith in Jesus. I found myself many times reading bible scriptures that will give me the hope, faith, preparation, wisdom and courage to continue to move forward. Secondly, I understood that community and collaboration in times like this, gives you meaning and strengthens people. Instead of retracting and constricting, I looked for ways to meet new people. Now more than ever before, people had the time and availability to sit and talk through a phone call or zoom conversations. I found many other small business owners and mothers like

me that were seeking that connection. It has been a wonderful experience, despite the sadness that we may have experienced knowing that many people were sick and others passed away. Thirdly, I researched information and continued with my supplementation to support my body. I am not giving any medical advice, nor am I trying to treat any infection with these supplements but there is scientific evidence that these substances may help our bodies and immune system to do what they are supposed to do. These are: Vitamin C, Vitamin B complex, Zinc, Vitamin D, Selenium, and the use of Elderberry, garlic, echinacea, curcumin, gluthathione, N-Acetyl-L-cysteine and others. I urge you to consult with a health provider before using these. In addition, the past 10 months have solidified my believe that our health is our most important asset and we must care for it. The time has come when we have to place our health as a priority. We simply cannot and should not depend only on external sources to keep us healthy or to restore our health. Our creator has made a wonderful, amazing body and we all should care for it diligently and consistently. Lastly, this term has been resonating with me for a long time and it has shown to be very important during this past year. Adaptability. This term describes the capacity or ability to adjust, modify or change ourselves to new conditions. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ LADIOLOGY } “Regardless of what this new year of 2021 bring us, I invite you to be courageous and ditch the fear. Anchor your hope and faith, solidify your roots with your community, care for your health and adapt to evolve in order to thrive.�

It is a key quality we have as humans. It has allowed our specie live through so many different times in the history of earth and has allowed us to thrive. In order to be adaptable, we have to learn how to use our skills, relationships and environment to survive and succeed. We have to be curious, creative, tenacious and unstoppable. Adaptability requires a desire to thrive with the same intensity that we want to live. When we are 350


adaptable, we can work in and with the new environment. During the adaptability phase, often we see that adversity brings new opportunities. The year 2020, brought to us many new conditions, many challenges, many stones in the road. Yet, many learned how to use those to adapt, evolve, develop and thrive. Regardless of what this new year of 2021 bring us, I invite you to be

courageous and ditch the fear. Anchor your hope and faith, solidify your roots with your community, care for your health and adapt to evolve in order to thrive. I am looking forward to experience a healthier, prosperous and strongbonded community. Until the next time. Happy New Year!






2020 was very unexpected for not just me but for all of us. So many struggles and challenges we faced as a nation.

happy, but if there is one thing I’ve learned especially this past year, is that family is everything and most important.

I opened my salon on June 1st, 2020 when the governor gave the okay for salons to reopen again. I;m not going to lie, I was terrified. Not knowing the uncertainty of our new normal Covid-19, I was scared of how I was going to make this all work and how! Despite all of that, I have still been managing to push through, and here we are now in 2021.

Being a first time business owner I’ve struggled with keeping balance and prioritizing what is important. Everyone wants to be successful, but at what cost. What to sacrifice?

Keeping faith in God and doing the best I can to maintain not just my business, but my family as well. Being a black woman business owner, a mother, a wife, and trying to maintain friendships whether past or present has been extremely difficult. I often feel like I’m falling short in certain areas of my life and I try to give attention to all those areas as they are super important to me. Frankly, I don’t often realize that I am only one person. When you chase more than one rabbit, eventually one or all get away! If I put all of me into building my brand to grow my business, then my social life suffers, and my family life suffers. You can’t make everyone 352


What do you put first? Where do you start? I recently made myself a vision board and I put all my thoughts and ideas first. When it was completed, I asked myself what needs my immediate attention and what can be done next week, next month, and so on. My family life always came first, making time for

my children. Different activities they’ve asked me to help them with I made sure I completed. I made time for my husband just to listen to him and understand his point of view and came to solutions together instead of apart. My business, having so many ideas, but choosing to focus on what made me want to become an owner and make a difference in the community. Making sure my next move will be my best and understanding there is very little room for error. Nothing is perfect, but at the same time, perfection is key. I’m going to focus on building my brand in 2021! If one door closes there is a hallway of doors I can walk through and keep trying. I am never giving up or worrying about the imperfections along the way. God gave me purpose, and I plan on using the gifts and talents he has bestowed on me to make a powerful difference. My motto is “You’re a better version of you when you look your best”! Join me on the ride in my monthly column called Crystal’s corners or come visit Crystal’s Beauty Salon & Spa in East Rochester.





KHOLAA LEWIN Kholaa is a Rochester, New York Native. Breaking into the music scene as a singer/songwriter (of many Genre’s). She credits some of her influences such Beyoncé,Rihanna, Ciara, Alicia Keys MARY J Blige and others for some of her more recent works.

out and 83 videos of content available on her channel. Her most popularly noted video is one of her singing Mariah carey’s hit song “My all”.

She currently volunteers as a Radio DJ/ Radio show host on104.3 WAYO, where she operates her own show “The Cool Cut” which plays upcoming artist, poets and fashion designers both locally and abroad.

In her hometown, Kholaa often competes in many log the local music competitions and would frequently obtain the titles for first and second place.

Pre and post Quarantine, Kholaa performs frequently in Rochester and around the country.

To propel her growing fan bass and to present herself as a much more well rounded artist, Kholaa began modeling as well as launching a youtube channel where her fans could subscribe, view her live performances/ home videos; as well as interact with her. She has modeled in numerous fashion shows as a teen including modeling for Fashion Bug, Hair Salon Brochures and many other platforms. She works in collaboration with many of Rochester’s local photographers on projects and is building her portfolio. Kholaa currently has 5 music videos 354


an awards ceremony locally, Kholaa would go on to become a mentor for artist, instructing them on the art of competing in music competitions; since competing became one of her specializes.

This artist is currently unsigned. Check her out on YouTube... Watch Kholaa’s “You Say” music video here

In August of 2019, World Star Hip Hop and YouTube debuted her music video helping her gain 15,000 views and counting. In 2014, after winning best female r&b artist in The Roc Awards: A city wide 5 month competition leading to

HIGHLIGHTS 1) Singer, songwriter, Radio personality and Model. 2) WINNER OF THE 2007 PEACE FESTIVAL AWARD ( R&B CATEGORY) 3) NOMINEE AND WINNER OF THE “ARTIST OF THE YEAR AWARD”-2009-2016 4 ) S T U D I E D M U S I C AT HOSCHSTIENS SCHOOL OF MUSIC-in Rochester new York HAS PERFORMED IN THESE LISTED FESTIVALS, PLACES, VENUES, AND CLUBS (including ones not mentioned in her bio.




“To propel her growing fan bass and to present herself as a much more well rounded artist, Kholaa began modeling as well as launching a youtube channel where her fans could subscribe, view her live performances/ home videos; as well as interact with her.�






If you read in my most recent column, you already know my Thanksgiving crept out of the room without anyone noticing. How to share what my first Christmas was like without being ridiculously sad? To be brutaly honest.. exposing my raw feelings regarding this first Christmas and many of you have lost someone incredibly significant in your life already, my prayer is this.. These words express and bless your soul with comfort. Because someone we love is in Heaven, we have a little bit of Heaven in our home.

the smile on her soft, porcelain-like face as she spoke of the amazing odor of our so soft, living pine tree. Christmas togetherness. I found the need to find my own alone time, sobbing for my mom.. wanting her back. To feel the warmth of her hug. to breathe in her scent. to hear her voice reassuring me of her love. and feeling very, very small in a world that suddenly feels like it was going to swallow me up. Remembering my panic of needing her as she was vanishing before my eyes on

Despite being surrounded with my own little family, i’m still conjuring up memories so devastating I would begin to wonder how i was still breathing. you see, to understand what my first Christmas was like without my mom, I must lead your understanding to what my Christmas was like while she was here. My Mom. she carried the heart of our 6-children –family of 8– legacy. we all circled around the light she so lovingly eluded. You see, Mom loved Christmas. it was a season of warmth by the fireplace, breathtakingly beautiful nativity garnishing it’s mantle, and cool elegance adorning our living room dazzling with vintage blue lights and unique blue-glass teardrop ornaments from our tree she so intricately decorated. I often wondered of her heart-felt thoughts as she carefully and perfectly placed each ornament one-by-one recalling her own Christmas traditions in her heart filled with sweet memories of Christmases past. In all my days I will never see anything more beautiful than

that Thanksgiving day. My mind still races to all the thoughts .. my grandchildren who will never know what this season feels like with my mom in it; they don’t know how our house used to smell with my mom cooking all her own unique recipe’s and holiday homemade baking. They’ve never had her holiday punch with rainbow sherbet. They’ll never know her mom’s recipe for the most delicious, mouthwatering cinnamon bread. or witness just how she could host an enormous number of guests in a way that made it so easy and joyful. They’ll never know how amazing she was at creating a sense

of “home”. it was pure magic for me. It was entirely representative of my mom and her unique ability to make everyone feel so welcome and at home. things that were once bright and exciting .. I can’t quite enjoy them the way I’d like to. the pain of missing my mom feels so intense, I can’t look straight at it. like the sun, I can look around it but if I stared straight at it, I couldn’t bear the pain.. So I try not to look. when someone I love so deeply isn’t here anymore to fill her place at our holiday table. my traditions have been linked to my mom for the past 31+ years. how can I ever feel right again? for me, my holidays were my mom. From all the fancy trimmings, cooking, baking and her elegant holiday place settings, she created the magic when she made all our holidays feel like we came back home. My mom loved Christmas and my kids are still creating their own special memories and traditions for their children. And I remind myself that my mom and I both have enjoyed an integral portion of creating that. so I try to enjoy it all. for them. for her. And when i’m ready to look up again at the sun; when that tiny little girl within me is crying for her mom, the warmth of that sunshine will remind me of all my Christmases past with her. she’s in my heart as close to me as she can be. forever. And one day, perhaps I will be okay with it. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021




Health and wellness. These have never been more threatened than in the past year, and on a global scale, causing anxiety, stress, and depression. Facing the unexpected pandemic has had its positive side, too. It’s realigned our values and opened our hearts. It’s helped us to put our lives into perspective. As we reflect on our blessings, we realize how fortunate we truly are. The challenges dim in light of them.

Classic business owner scenario, myself included. Be careful entrepreneurs! This could be you if it hasn’t already been. Many if not all entrepreneurs believe that if they follow their dream and run their own business, they’ll be happy and in charge of their calendar. They visualize all this free time. And then, reality kicks in. 8-hour days become 12 and 5-day weeks become 7. Here’s a safe way to manage and avoid

BEING A BUSINESS OWNER Meet Andrea Parros, owner, Red Fern restaurant Andrea beautifully describes her experience! “My greatest blessing in 2020 was the pandemic.”

“When the virus caused the shutdown, I finally got to slowwww dowwwwn.” Oh, I see now. You got off the hamster wheel most Americans have been riding the past decade. “I opened the restaurant seven years ago, and have been running at full speed, virtually non-stop ever since.” 362


Another classic example of entrepreneurship is getting pulled away from your passion. You end up running the day-to-day admin and business affairs vs. what you actually love to do. “I hadn’t cooked or baked for the restaurant since we opened, yet that was one of the main reasons I opened the business - because I LOVE to cook! To be able to experience the joy of creating food again was just such a blessing.”

Take a moment now to draft a list of your blessings and your challenges of 2020. For inspiration, read on!

What? Did she say the pandemic was her greatest blessing? OK. Let’s hear her out.

Listen. First to everything around you. Then to the sound of your breath. Say to yourself, “Breathing in I breathe in. Breathing out, I breathe out.” Doing this even for 1 minute will bring you back to yourself and the present moment.

Her biggest challenge? “Navigating business operations and … being mindful of how my decisions would affect over 40 staff!”

this rollercoaster. Mindfulness. According to Andrea, it took the pandemic to bring her to the beauty and stillness of the present moment. “I got to experience the most quiet & solitude I had in ages. It was so calming to hear my own voice, my own spirit again.” Meditation. Try that now. Close your eyes. Take a few long breaths in and out.

Remember to support your local restaurant. Order take out. You are not only treating yourself to a delicious meal, but are keeping business owners in business and their staff safely employed. JOB TRANSITIONS Losing a job that she really enjoyed was difficult for Shoshana Cherney. You may know her via her infamous Hula Hooping videos! She enjoyed working in restaurants, and

{ MIND, BODY & SPIRIT } “Following the election and the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement, I often felt overwhelmed and riveted by the history unfolding in front of our own eyes.”

developed a goal to become the next great chef. In March, she was about to start a new position at a Michelin star restaurant when everything changed. Eventually she found a job as a cashier. With true spirit she shares, “My greatest blessings this year honestly have to be my greatest challenges. These challenges changed me for the better and pushed me to adapt. They’ve shown me how strong of a person I truly am.” The pandemic effected our economy worldwide, and hit home for many. Ellen Fleche had to enter early retirement, and has experienced a feeling of loss not only for her work but for her co-workers. None-the-less, she is grateful for the health of her loved ones.

having her kids back from college by going on family adventures. Her greatest challenge? “Tearing myself away from the news and staying centered and focused. Following the election and the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement, I often felt overwhelmed and riveted by the history unfolding in front of our own eyes. It’s been an amazing year!” It certainly has. Surround yourself with music and family to bring balance into

You may be familiar with Brenda Bolton Tremblay, and wake up to her music programs on WXXI. Her greatest blessing in 2020 was to make music herself. I love that! She also took advantage of 364


Yvonne Ventura misses the freedom to socialize with her friends but appreciates the generations of loving family surrounding her with laughter and joy. PETS! PETS! PETS! On a recent zoom call, everyone was accompanied by their pet! It seems that during a time where socialization is on the freeze, adopting a pet makes it to the top of the list. I got to meet Cookie, the lovable companion of Kimberly Patrick Russell. Whether snuggling or taking walks together, this furry friend helps Kim to adapt to the strange new world.

While her business has stayed afloat, Artist Andrea LiquidArt has found the closing of local resources to be a challenge, but the national connections with art lovers a tremendous blessing! FAMILY, HEALTH & MUSIC We’ve been advised to keep our pods near and dear, and for most of us that means spending more time if not all of it with family. It may be a blessing of a challenge. By bringing creativity and balance into the mix, the blessings rise to the top.

Geri Billotti-Van Auker shares this experience but balances it with the joyous birth of her first grandchild.

the mix. For Andy Willoughby learning how to play Mustang Sally counts as a blessing. Awesome! Some of us have had to face our own health scares like Ken Columbo who survived a heart attack. Thank God & Goddess! While others have managed the well-being of their loved ones like Marty Magoon whose father has been isolated in a nursing home. Knowing that he’s OK is a comfort, but not being able to see him has been tough.

DATING DURING A PANDEMIC Do you even dare to kiss? This has been the challenge hurled at Beth Eustis. We used to be roomies back in NYC, both with a love for theatre. It looks like we’ve maintained similar paths. Her greatest blessing last year was being approved to be ordained in the United Church of Christ. Thank you to everyone who shared! May 2021 be filled with wishes answered. Creative Coach & Author, Alana Cahoon leads individuals to grow their businesses, expand their minds & heal their souls.

“Mindfulness, Mantras & Meditations gives the reader a complete set of tools to align mind and body, and Þll you with a strong sense of inner peace. The underlying theme is a deep knowledge of what it means to work toward goals, and learn to accept ourselves for the beautiful, perfect, unique beings we are.” -Velvet Spicer, journalist

“This book will change your life. Alana is a life saver, literally, the most trustworthy, reliable, compassionate person I know who provides guidance and comfort like no one else. She is the one person I can trust and rely on in a crazy, unreliable, and ever-changing world.” Vaneeta Baronas, MD


Creative Coach & Author, Alana Cahoon guides individuals on their path to personal & professional transformation. Grow your business. Expand your mind. Heal your soul.






So, it’s 2021. Ugh. I feel entering this new year, like I am going on my first date after being in a longterm abusive relationship. I am shell-shocked. I am guarded. I am skeptical about being hopeful. Screw that. I am afraid to be hopeful, but here we go. 2020 can kiss my posterior but there are some things I have learned and a few silver linings. Unlike how I have been all my life, I have found I am really okay with being a recluse. Don’t get me wrong, I love my friends, but I have found some peace in just being. Something I’ve not only feared, but I never thought I would enjoy just “being”, ya know, with myself, but I actually did. I’m an acquired taste, so that wasn’t easy. I annoy me. Come on, we all can admit that the pressure to “look good” being lifted didn’t suck. I have never gotten ready so fast in all my life. Ponytail, baseball hat, and mask, sans make up can make for a “get ready” time of five minutes or less. No one expects anything from you and I am more than happy to disappear into the nothingness and anonymity of “Mask World”. My hat hides my ever-increasing roots and the frequency I wax my moustache has become as regular as a Blue Moon. I mean, no one sees me without a mask and with winter coming, the mustache provides some extra face heat and some new styling options so that’s a win, right?

Who knows? Perhaps we will save MILLIONS in perfume dollars once the scent of sanitizer becomes the new aphrodisiac. Jump on the bandwagon early, kids. I learned to cook many new things. I don’t cook. That is how bored I have been. I am cooking. But there is something sort of cool in exploring different and foreign areas. I always thought I hated cooking, so I never tried. Obviously, it took a global pandemic to force me into cooking. And although I would choose for the pandemic to have NEVER happened, I am grateful that I found this new thing I actually enjoy. My husband keeps looking at me and saying, “It’s nice, but it’s weird. Really weird”. I caught him looking under the beds. I am certain he is looking for pods. He may not be wrong. I developed a deep and almost codependent relationship with nature. I had NO idea trees could be such amazing and loyal friends. They are ALWAYS where I found them and they listen to me. Trees help one another out. Even across species. If one is hurting or in need, they rush in to help. Sending food and nourishment to the tree in need. In fact, they will “feed” a stump for years. There is something so beautiful being in their presence. Especially now. There is so much anger nowadays, I relish being in a community of love and support. They help me have hope for us

humans. If we could adopt their ways, maybe the world would be a tad safer for all of us. I mean, we are all just riding a rock, hurdling through space, right? We need to figure this crap out. Nothing can make you appreciate living more than your mortality being challenged. It’s been stressful, depressing and heartbreaking, but we’re still here, right? So, let’s make a bucket list for 2021. What’s going to be on yours? I am going to try to be in the moment. Every moment. I want to have friends over and laugh into the wee hours. I am going to drink tequila now and again. I am going to make more blanket forts and watch cheesy movies. I am going to be open to hearing “the other side”. We were just schooled on what truly matters to each of us. I don’t plan on wasting that knowledge. I am stacked with toilet paper. Most importantly, I am going to finally shave my legs and put the hair under the bed in a pod form and wait for the reaction.





Happy New Year! A new year brings hope, introspect and an escalated level of motivation. While people are reflecting and setting personal goals and resolutions, businesses too are busy reevaluating sales, expenses, vendors and such. It is a time to encourage change for achieving bigger results. A big component of a businesses operations is their rent and operating costs. If you are a business owner and your lease is expiring in the next 6-18 months, you are in luck! 2021 is the year of change and incredible opportunity. The only question remains, what do you desire?


L a s t y e a r, e v e r y single business owner was forced to stop, reposition and adapt operations throughout the pandemic. 100% of businesses, regardless of industry type, location, seasonal, client-based vs consumer based-everyone had challenges. The end result was businesses operated differently, which affected their space needs. Many businesses have learned to operate more efficiently, some even ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE : JANUARY EDITION 2021 rotating employees coming into the office. Others have expanded in order to have space between desks, add additional equipment/space for increased production, or even add space to store overflow inventory

as overseas shipping became more complex. The shift in operations has resulted in an overall shift in available spaces. To help fill vacancies and entice new tenants, many local landlords are offering tenant incentives. I believe each business owner owes it to themselves to evaluate leasing options

as a cost saving measure. A new space can boost productivity, bring better exposure, more convenient parking and so much more. There is a process to analyzing leases which include any free rent, tenant allowance, buildout costs and operating expense breakdowns. The

details of each opportunity are so unique, that having a side-by-side chart with a graph distinguish the true costs per location. A tenant’s current location can be included as well, to compare how a renewal holds up against a new location. Evaluating locations and comparisons take time. My advice is to always start the process 6-18 months prior to the lease expiring. This provides ample time to identify, negotiate and perform build-outs. There is tremendous oppor tunity this year for businesses to expand, improve location and save money. The beauty of commercial leasing is the fluidity and flexibility that can be negotiated for tenants. If there is a chance that a business will need to expand at some point during their lease, it is crucial to have expansion options. In our region, we are fortunate to have some wonderful landlords, who are motivated to have their tenants succeed and will be flexible with lease terms. A negative experience with a current landlord, may be one that became more tense during the pandemic, is another reason to explore options and improve your surroundings.




{ THE “QUEEN” OF COMMERCIAL } { SHIFT+CONTROL } “The shift in operations has resulted in an overall shift in available spaces. To help fill vacancies and entice new tenants, many local landlords are offering tenant incentives.”

As a tenant’s agent, I am typically paid by the landlord and my commission has already been factored into the lease rate. Such, there is only an advantage to working with a licensed professional. I first work to perform a needs analysis, whereby we work as a team to separate needs against wants and prioritize key factors. After identifying multiple options that are suitable, we schedule tours to view spaces, in order to learn about the property itself, and the respective landlord. Understanding that each space is unique, an offer is prepared 372


for the landlord’s consideration that present the terms that are being offered. A big responsibility of mine is to position that tenant in a way that the landlord will desire the tenant; how does the tenant add value to the other tenants and to the landlord’s portfolio. We are all familiar with that adage “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” This could not be more true than in commercial real estate. Many options do not hit the market and are not marketed publicly. At

times, tenants are relocated within a portfolio, others because there may be a waiting list for that size space, or even the agent may have a replacement tenant for the space that they moved out another tenant. The reasons vary why many spaces are not listed, yet the importance of the agent’s connections are most impactful for tenants. Regularly speaking with landlords about their upcoming vacancies, ongoing networking, working with other industry professionals give me an ongoing pulse on the market.








By now you have likely realized that 12:01am on January 1, 2021 did not include a magical reset button. The world did not return to normalcy against the backdrop of fireworks ringing in the New Year. And we did not awake on January 1st on a pillow of fairy dust and glitter to a world with no worries where all of our dreams had come true. Alas, we all awoke to find January 1st, 2021 was… well… the start of another day. That’s what makes it so special. It is another day to start fresh. Another day to realize the beauty around us and be grateful for all that we have. But for many of us, that one moment on this one day, when the clock strikes midnight and the ball drops represents the proverbial reset button, our one chance to start fresh. “Out with the old and in with the new”. We set up that moment this year, as we have for each year before, as a chance to rethink, reform, regroup and reprioritize how we will shape our lives for the better in the year to come. We hyped ourselves up to enter this new year as a “new you”. We set resolutions and made vision boards, we ordered that Peloton or signed up for the gym membership. We unpacked the new kitchen gadgets, cleaned out the pantry and stocked it full of fresh food. And we declared “This year will be better. This year I will ________ ( fill in the blank)”. We were enthusiastic. We were prepared. And this year was going to be different. Is it? By the time you are reading this some time has passed since that MOMENT. Whether you are still on track with the resolutions you made, or

have already found yourself reverting to old patterns of thought or behavior? Research shows that over 90% of New Year’s “resolutions” have been broken by the end of January. So how can we do better? Its time to upgrade your mindset to Resolutions 2.1: Solutions vs. Resolutions This is a concept I remind my clients of every year. The old belief of sweeping change and overnight transformation is not realistic or sustainable. We must remember that in order for a new way of being to occur, and ultimately for our new goals and intentions to become sustained reality, we must consistently and mindfully push that proverbial reset button each and every day – sometimes even multiple times each day. Because change occurs with small, meaningful, deliberately made choices. And you can make a choice now… and now… and in 2 hours… and tomorrow… and next week. And when we realize that is all that is needed for change, we can focus on the moment, and what we can do NOW, without feeling overwhelmed by a year ( or even months) worth of planning and commitments. Our circumstances are changing daily. Trusting yourself to make choices that move you closer to your goals – that is the solution. In order to find a solution you must clearly understand the problem A resolution is arbitrary, and not grounded in the root of our problems. It is often a band aid, a cover up, for the true issues that lay deeper, below the surface. In order to find a solution, you must look at the root cause of the behavior. That

is the harder course of action. We don’t want to address why we are overweight, why we are tired all the time, or why we are unhappy. We just want a quick fix. It is easier to state “I WILL LOSE weight this year” than to say, “I will stop putting myself last on my list of priorities, thereby giving myself permission to take care of myself by taking time to work out every day and make the appropriate eating choices.” It is easier to say, “I will stop drinking this year” or “I will quit smoking this year” than to say, “I will address the issues that make me unhappy and unsatisfied in my life, and find positive coping mechanisms that will make me feel good about myself.” And on and on. Resolutions allow us to ignore the root cause of our “issues”. Solutions FORCE us to look them smack in the face… stare them down… and overcome them. By facing our goals head on, with a plan, not just a whim, we set ourselves up for success. We must always answer these three questions honestly: What SHOULD I do? What CAN I DO? And What AM I WILLING TO DO? Do not set your goals because someone else wants you to. Don’t set a goal out of guilt or embarrassment. Set a goal because you are ready to change, and because it is important to you, and YOU are important enough to invest in. My wish for each and every one of us this New Year: The strength to look with an honest mind and an open heart at WHY we are where we are? Why do we struggle with our weight? Why we are always tired? Why do we drink? Why do we smoke? Why do ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ WELL TRAIL } “A resolution is arbitrary, and not grounded in the root of our problems. It is often a band aid, a cover up, for the true issues that lay deeper, below the surface.”

we yell at our loved ones? And then, find solutions that will reduce or resolve those behaviors. We cannot control everything in our lives. We can’t control our bosses, our families, our friends. We can’t control the economy, politics or the weather. But we CAN control our reactions, our behaviors and our state of mind. That is what New Year’s Solutions are all about. And you do not need a special day, or moment to start this process of self improvement. Because every moment is another opportunity to begin anew. So take that first step now, and another one in a moment. And before you know it you will be 378


walking into a whole new you!! Happy New Year—and may this be the year you make your own solutions. WellTrail is accepting enrollment for our 10th Anniversary of WHOLE U – an educational and motivational on demand program that supports your effort to identify meaningful goals for your health and well-being with medically, nutritionally and “wholistically” based support. YOU set your goal and WE support your solutions. WHOLE U includes: Habit Change, Identifying and Controlling Your Triggers, Nutrition Science for All with comprehensive strategies to apply that knowledge based

on your goals and medical conditions or restrictions, and weaves the importance of movement, spirit and positive mental health strategies throughout. The program can be followed by a guided and supported 30 day WHOLE U RESET – a self designed challenge to help you reach the goals that are important to you. Your unique, customized challenge is supported through access to on demand training, a customized health portal and one on one consulting. Contact us at today to learn more and sign up. Access to classes begins 1-21-21.



The year that was. So many could not wait until those particular 52 weeks were over. It was a year of total change, of realizations, of challenge, patience, disbelief, and fear. There were medical, professional, social, economic, political, and life changing components to it. It was truly a year of revelation. A year to remember and hopefully, a time to rethink what must change in our lives. It was certainly one for the history books, one we will never forget, and whether we realize it or not, one that will shape our collective future. We are spiritual beings having a human experience and each of our souls is at a different level of development. As a result, we have different motivations, different needs, and vastly different perspectives. We are here together in this classroom called Earth to learn as much as we can, to expand our consciousness, experience all that is possible, and to advance our soul journeys. Depending on your perspective and prior knowledge, you may have seen 2020 as the end of one age and the beginning of another. For those in some circles, it was actually the year 2012 and as such, Dec. 21st was the day that the new eon began, just as predicted in the Mayan calendar. There were astrological, biblical, and numerological aspects to 2020 but again, only if you had the eyes to 380


see. The experience was fascinating for some and maddening for others. Two people can look at the same thing and have completely different perspectives. Some people cannot see the things you do because they simply may not be ready to see. Some people will never see things that you do or in the way that you do. That is fine. What is not fine is the violent

response and harsh reaction that so easily follows for some. We all have unique beliefs. What is the gospel to one person is a joke to the next. If you believe something to be true, then it is. Either way, we must learn to work together and respectfully disagree. 2020 was a year of great patriotism and also great disrespect to our nation and in some cases, each other. It was everything and yet nothing all at

once. It was a time of lost freedom accompanied by everchanging rules and government overreach. Depending on where you lived, it was a vastly different experience. It was a time to go deep within as individuals and hopefully find ways to reinvent ourselves. It was a time of renewed faith or heightened fear. As we spent this altered time, we experienced things that we had not seen in our lifetime. Some of us will forever be obedient and blindly do whatever we are told. No questions asked. We saw something on TV, so then it must be true, right? Uh no, but for some, yes, yes, yes. Others of us endlessly continued to dig and uncover information to hopefully answer that big question, “Why?” If we could step outside of our physical bodies, we would remember that each of us is a beam of light… one is brighter than or dimmer than any other. Each of our lights is equally important. When we see our inner selves, our light beings, we forget about gender, race, age, class, and other potentially divisive categories. Instead, we tend to mentally stay inside of our vessels and then stop speaking or fight to the death over things that really are perhaps not even important and, in some cases, not even true. There was and still is plenty of cognitive dissonance and even willful blindness



{ TRACY TALKS } “The world we knew before 2020 is no more. We all have adjustments to make and some healing to do.”

to go around. Depending on who and what we were plugged in to, we experienced and thought very different things. We saw people take to the streets. We fiercely argued our own points or remained silent in fear of retribution from others who did not share our views. What exactly was it that we were seeing and hearing? Will 2020 be ‘the year that was’ or will it be the gift that keeps on giving? Will we soften our approaches with each other as we disagree in the future or did we let the high energy of the year damage 382


some of our relationships? It is perfectly fine to have your own opinion. It is never fine, though, to attack other people who have differing views. The trick to living in peace is to know things for yourself and to pick your battles. Instead of digging in your heels and standing your ground, do some research and try to see the other person’s point of view. The world we knew before 2020 is no more. We all have adjustments to make

and some healing to do. When we deal with one another, we need to not be low vibrational. We will always have differences, but we must learn to have tolerance and to agree to disagree. Your views may be controversial to others in your circle, but you still have the right to be able to voice your opinion and not have to fear a backlash or later play chicken with an apology. Hindsight is 2020.






On New Year Eve the ball dropped, I kissed my daughter, and like many of us was sadden by the sight of an empty Times Square. Although I have seen the images of Midtown so many times on the news, I sat in disbelief at the year that had finally passed.

I smiled and laughed to myself thinking of the other ladies who were just like me; home, bored and rather than reflecting, were trying to stay up long enough to make sure they got into the class too. We are a competitive group of women who prioritize this hour each week.

It was now January, a time for new beginnings.

Taking this coveted class, a year ago was easy. All you had to do was show up. Now it requires planning, persistence, and an alarm clock. The class availability is limited and technically opens for registration the day before the actual class is offered. I learned the hard way, that means 12:00 a.m.

In the past I would reshuffle my selfimprovement deck of cards and deal out my straight flush of my usual resolutions; eat better, exercise more, spend less at the mall and try to get some sleep. Every year I make these bold promises to myself only to break them by Super Bowl weekend. They all seem so unimportant and a little embarrassing right now. Last year I should have resolved to drink more wine, live in sweatpants, and walk my dog three miles a day. At least I could have kept those resolutions. Who knew? I am left wondering if 2020 will be the year we leave this exhausting idea of major resolve behind us. It is so much pressure. I headed to bed and instead of scrolling through Facebook and Instagram to see what my 500 plus “friends” were doing, I logged on to my gym app, trying to secure one of only twelve spots for my favorite Saturday morning exercise class. It was 12:22 and I was the last one to get in.

We wear a mask, stand on a large circle inside a rectangle made of arrows, ensuring we stay six feet apart from the person next to us. This class is popular due to the teacher’s enthusiasm and skill and a year ago she could easily lead fifty for more of us; all jammed into a studio jumping, punching, and kicking. The sheer amount of sweat and bodies used to drive me crazy. I remember complaining to myself that I needed more space. Well, I got my wish. For me, exercise was one of the activities that helped me endure 2020. With nothing to do and nowhere to go, being active became the focus of my day early on. It was no longer a chore, or something I “had” to do, or a way to lose weight. My daily walks with the dog and my

daughter did not stop even after the gym opened for classes. The first “class” that was allowed was held outside in a parking lot. Despite being on pavement, I remember feeling alive and grateful that my body was healthy enough to be there. Maybe we do not need resolutions to motivate us and move us forward. If this past year has taught me anything it is that appreciating where you are leads to more meaningful results. Learning to embrace my steady routine was empowering. I am learning that consistency is the only thing in life that influences outcomes. When 2020 began, I was stressed out, worried and I could not sleep for more than a few hours at a time. I was constantly under self-imposed pressure to perform. I worried about how I looked, what I had to do, and where I was going next. I have discovered more about myself in ten months than I have in ten years. So, I have given up my resolutions in exchange for daily intensions. I treasure my morning cup of coffee. I watch the sun come up and thank God for my home and my family. At the end of the day, it is what matters most. Seeing my dog Ted stretch and roll on his back in anticipation of a belly rub is pure perfection. The early morning hours of my day are productive and not squandered away ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ HER EDGE } “2020 was a terrible year but it taught me to value small things and true selfimprovement. It has changed my life in big ways.�

with negative thoughts and defeat. Naps are a gift I give to myself each day. Evenings are for reading, finishing work, staying quiet and occasionally losing two hours watching an old rom com on cable tv. I have embraced healthier eating by simply saying yes. Home cooked meals each night with my daughter taught

me that cauliflower pizza, almond milk creamer, and chickpea pasta are delicious. Trying something new is more fun than always saying no. My guilty pleasures include wine, ordering makeup on Amazon and watching clothing hauls on YouTube. I spend less money and enjoy more of what I have. And now when I stand in the back of my exercise class, I never wish for it to

be over. I look forward to seeing the women on my app who I have gotten to know these past months. 2020 was a terrible year but it taught me to value small things and true selfimprovement. It has changed my life in big ways. I never could have imagined.




Living in recovery from substance use disorder was not what you would expect from a girl adopted by a loving family at the age of 14 months living in the small, suburban, middle-class neighborhood of Fairport, NY and with every possible opportunity imaginable, but- I still never felt like I fit in. That loneliness led me to experiment with drugs and alcohol at the young age of 15. Of course we learned in health class that drugs are bad and not to do them, but peer pressure and fitting in is a huge part of being a teen. We never think that trying something one time will lead to anything that bad, I mean it’s just one time, or just on the weekends. We didn’t learn about the WHY though. We didn’t learn the reality of where drugs and alcohol could lead us. We weren’t taught that that one time changes someone’s brain chemistry that has a genetic predisposition for substance use disorder. My substance use didn’t really get out of hand until 2009 when my mother passed away from ovarian cancer. She was my best friend. Although I was no stranger to grief, losing my daughter only 8 hours after she was born, getting divorced, but losing my mom was when my world started to spin out of control. My mom was prescribed an array of opiates which I found and started taking regularly, 388


and before I knew it, I was addicted. I kept numbing my pain but continued to live. It was during this time that I reconnected and remarried my husband and father to our son. My husband Justin, who also struggled with substance use disorder. My use led me to things I never thought I would do. Everything from stealing,

robbing, prostituting, being homeless in and out of shelters and neglecting my children. What should have been what people like to call “my rock bottom” happened In April 2015, it was then that my husband and I were arrested on multiple charges and cps removed our children from our custody and placed them with my father. I continued using with many attempts at detoxes, inpatients and outpatients until I finally hit what I have found

was my point of motivation to make different choices. On October 9, 2016 I went into detox after leaving my husband and fought for myself and my recovery. After successfully completing detox and inpatient that is when the real work began. Dealing with the traumas that lead me to abusing drugs and the ones I incurred well in active addiction. As I began learning how to live life in recovery, to start facing my past, my world came crashing down again. On January 12,2017 I got a phone call saying that my husband of 14 years passed away from an overdose. My “normal” response to this would be to pick up a substance to numb the pain, the grief, the emptiness, however I knew that wasn’t an option for me, I wouldn’t survive another recurrence. This time I decided to find purpose with my pain, I let it motivate me and I started an organization called Hope Dealers BTC. I didn’t want my husband to become just another statistic, I didn’t want him to be forgotten. Hope Dealers primary purpose was to offer support to those affected with substance use disorder. We did clean up which involved picking up needles and drug paraphernalia, sweeping abandoned housing being used as shooting galleries, we did outreach in the most impacted areas of our community offering personal




{ HER SHIFT+CONTROL { IN OWN WORDS} } “My hopes in sharing this with you is that if you are struggling or know someone who is struggling that there is hope on the other side of that fear you may be feeling. There is life outside of addiction and it’s beautiful.”

care items, food, clothing, and Narcan (overdose reversal drug) which in turn gave people in active addiction hope. We ran a 24 hour hope line and provided people with assistance for treatment and support to them and their family members and in turn helped over 100 people find recovery. In 2019 Hope Dealers BTC was nominated and won nonprofit of the year and this past May I won the 2020 Thomas Jefferson award.

they are at. We will be providing clothing, personal care items and a full scale harm reduction program. Recovery All Ways will be training a team to answer our 24 hour all ways recovery and support line. It’s going to take a lot of hard work, sweat equity and team-work to make this happen. But we have a large group of driven individuals, committed

In December 2020, due to circumstances beyond my control, I felt it was necessary to resign my position as CEO and President of Hope Dealers BTC. Even though I had resigned my position from this organization, I had not resigned myself from the mission I have always been dedicated to. I am excited to share that immediately following this I and a team of my dedicated volunteers decided to create a new organization Recovery All Ways so we can uphold the mission we were determined to honor. Recovery All Ways is in the beginning phases of becoming a 501(c)3 in New York. We are so excited to start doing clean up and outreach operations focused on support and meeting people where 390


and passionate to bring change to our community! A lot of people have already helped us so much, and we appreciate it from the bottom of our hearts. Others have been asking what else they can do to help us in our mission. Attached is a list of items that we

will need to get started and our email address to contact for more info is printed on the bottom of the image. You can locate our wishlist here; You can locate our GoFundMe here; You can locate our website here; We truly couldn’t do this without the love and support from our amazing community! My hopes in sharing this with you is t h a t i f yo u are struggling or know someone who is struggling that there is hope on the other side of that fear you may be feeling. There is life outside of addiction and it’s beautiful. If you or someone you know is in need of support please reach out to us!





I wanted this January column to have an inspirational message about coming through difficult times, basically 2020, and moving forward into 2021. However, I was really struggling with crafting that message. On the morning of December 30th, two days before my deadline, I was out walking and deep in thought trying to come up with the big message, when I slipped on the ice and fell. Actually, fell down on the ground, on my hands and knees.

with you like a cell phone. There was time and space to analyze problems and craft a well thought out response before writing a reply or returning a phone call. Now, people text and expect an immediate response. Or they send

So now, I fell, people saw me, my knee hurt, my palm hurt, my run tracker blared out the message that I had walked only one-half mile at a slow 18-minute mile pace, and I still had not come up with a good idea for this column. I was very disgruntled and not feeling at all inspirational. As I continued to walk, watching out for ice, I started thinking about the ‘90’s. Sometimes I really miss the 1990’s. Life was just so much simpler. I think that a big part of that is due to technology. Back in the ‘90’s we were not expected to be available 24/7. People corresponded by letters, that had to be mailed and delivered by the post office, or by telephone and voice mail. The telephone plugged into a phone jack and did not travel

an email and immediately call or text to ask if you received the message. Responses tend to be quick and perhaps reactive. There was also privacy. People used to believe that you did not air your dirty laundry in public – now everyone airs everything on social media. In

addition, the digital technology that we use today allows our every movement to be tracked – where we are, what we eat, where we shop, what we buy, with whom we associate. It really is true that privacy is a luxury. I have never been an “early adopter” when it comes to technology. More like I am dragged to it kicking and screaming. So, it is not surprising that I feel nostalgia for a time when our lives were less dependent on technology. As I was walking and thinking about the ‘90’s, I also started thinking about the Woody Allen film Midnight in Paris. In this film Owen Wilson plays a writer on vacation in Paris who at midnight every night finds himself in the 1920’s with F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. In his real life (2011) he is nostalgic for the ‘20’s, believing that it was a better time. In his alternate 1920’s universe, he meets Marion Cotillard. A woman from the 1920’s who is anxious to return to the Belle Époque era, the years 1871 to 1914, which she believes was the best time. The two characters argue about which era was better. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ BLISSFUL BALANCE } “2020 has certainly been a challenging year in many ways and with that there has been both good and bad. I feel very lucky and blessed that I have come through the year whole.”

I think that it is probably completely normal as you age to look back with nostalgia and fondness for earlier times in your life. But the truth is, you can look at any era in history, including the current period, and find good and bad. I know that we are never going back to 1990, I will never be 30 again, and technology will continue to evolve. 2020 has certainly been a challenging 394


year in many ways and with that there has been both good and bad. I feel very lucky and blessed that I have come through the year whole. As we move into 2021, I hope to continue to see the good things that happen in the world, to be present in my life, (so I do not fall on the ice) and to continue to learn, grow, and move forward. I hope for the same for you.

Wishing you a 2021 filled with peace, bliss, and balance… At Blissful Balance LLC our mission is to help you to live life healthier. You can follow us on Facebook @ blissfullbalanceroc and Instagram blissfull_balance.

“Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.� - Buddha At Blissful Balance our mission is to help you to live life healthier. Let us help you to author your own health. Offering wellness workshops, individual health coaching and essential oils.

Please contact us for a complimentary consultation 585-532-6060 or Facebook @blissfullbalanceroc Instagram blissfull_balance



Who is Sharlamar Curry? A) A loyal down to earth human. that has a passion for faith, family and music. Who is inspired by new talent, deferent generes of music and by great moments and energy that music can magically create Where did you go to school? What’s your background?

What are the 3 things that make you hustle? A) Family music and my life’s purpose are my main motivation! What makes you an artist and get you excited about creating? A) My passion and will to create,

A) I went to school Edison Career & Technology High School were i took photography. I have a passion for images that are beautiful and also the way photos and video can capture precious moments in time. Which would later be used for my music video and photo shoots. My background, for as long as I can remember has been a love for music. I remember as a kid my grandmother taking me to church and being with my mom as she played for various local bands.I started playing drums at a young age. It has brought me opportunities such as playing for for numerous bands which in turn has allowed me to local and internationally.I have also opened for various famous artist. Having those great opportunities has also shown me that as much as I love the drums, I love being a artist more. The creativity and knowing that I’m touching ppl in a way that only music can is amazing. 396


playing on the radio for one moment many people are all together listening to me and in one way or another I am part of there lives for those 2min and 55 seconds How have you been marking your business and what tactics have been the most successful? A) Using all social media p l a t f o r m s d r i s t ro k i d / Instagram/Facebook/ITunes/ Spotify/SoundCloud/Twitter I have noticed that Facebook has definitely been one of the better tactics. Being able to directly connect with people and host Live events has really helped get my music out. If you had the chance to start your career over again what would you do more differently?

I am able to adjust according to the time.I feel my music should be heard by the whole world .my drive alone helped me release 2 albums and 4 music videos . I believe this and being able to create in and era where there’s nothing but pandemic shows my dedication. What makes me excited about creating that one day everyone will hear my music! Know that when my music is

A) I would be more fearless, wouldn’t depend on the opinions of others. I would travel more so I calor make better connections and networkings. Lastly, Believe in myself dispite despite negative energy. Who has been your biggest inspiration? A) It would take all day because I am inspired by some many ,but there a a few that I do pay homage to:Micheal Jackson is definitely one of them. I could remember as a








{{ARTISTS IN THE ROC} } SHIFT+CONTROL “If I was to write a book the titile would be “live now “because tomorrow is not promised. Life is very impulsive you have to take the bull by the horns without hesitation.”

young kid seeing him preform and being amazed. Jazmine Sullivan she is an extraordinary vocalist. Brandy is definitely one of my favorites .to see her be able to adapt through the years and continue to still be an amazing artist and true to herself is definitely something I aspire to be .

you have to take the bull by the horns without hesitation. Always making sure you see clearly. With all the adversity we face it’s important to have a sense of tunnel vision so you can achieve the level of happiness and success that you desire.

If you wrote a book what would the title be?

What do you think makes you a successful as a music artist in Rochester NY?

A) If I was to write a book the titile would be “live now “because tomorrow is not promised. Life is very impulsive

A) My ability to network outside my hometown my music is currently streaming on all musical platforms

as well as playing on the the radio station 97.5 HIPHOPDAILY ran by Moolahmoe Where do you see yourself in 2021 and beyond? A) In 2021 I see myself shooting more music videos such as “F It” which is the second single on my new album, Dreams Never Die: ColdWave. releasing more music, collaborating with other artist and making more great music.





It’s that time of year again. We’re finally nearing the end of 2020, a year that has been marked by a global pandemic, a contested presidential election, and racial protests. Many of us are eagerly anticipating the start of 2021. It offers a fresh start, a clean slate. We often are tempted to make resolutions at the beginning of a new year. After the pandemic fatigue that almost everyone is experiencing, it probably seems more overwhelming than usual to make new year’s resolutions that stick.

slow, steady progress that eventually leads to successfully reaching a large goal. Suppose you want to lose forty pounds. It’s unrealistic to think that you’ll accomplish this in eight weeks. It’s realistic to have a weight loss goal of one pound per week. Another reason why new year’s resolutions fail is that we doubt

May I ask what happened to the resolutions that you made for 2020? There’s a high probability that you didn’t adhere to them, long-term. Successfully changing our behavior is difficult to do. If it were easy, we wouldn’t need to keep making the same resolutions, such as losing weight, year after year. I’ve recently been thinking about the most important reasons for why our new year’s resolutions fail. Perhaps you can relate to some, or many, of the following reasons. One of the most common reasons why resolutions fail is that we expect too much too soon. It takes time to see the results of changing our behavior. Many of us quickly become impatient with slow progress toward our goals. However, it’s the consistency of having 400


ourselves. Maybe you’ve had the same resolution, year after year. You might find yourself doubting if next year will be any different. This mindset only sets you up for failure, however. A new year offers the chance to begin anew. Don’t let doubt get in the way of reaching your goals. Yet another reason why new year’s resolutions fail is that we think too

much, and do too little, to reach our goals. What good is it to have countless books on the benefits of exercise if we only read about exercise, rather than doing it? Knowledge has to be accompanied with action. Sometimes, we need to get out of our heads, so to speak, and simply take action. Sometimes, we fail to achieve our new year’s resolutions because we’re trying to change our behavior on our own. Having an accountability partner goes a long way in achieving our goals. It keeps us honest with ourselves. Facebook is full of groups that offer support for a wide range of goals. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that you can exhibit lasting behavioral changes all by yourself. We all benefit from having adequate social support. Given the restrictions imposed by COVID-19, this support may need to be virtual. New year’s resolutions can fail if we excessively deprive ourselves of pleasure. For example, it’s unrealistic to completely eliminate sweets from your entire diet. Doing so is likely to set you up for binging on sweets. Instead of having an all or nothing mentality, allow yourself to occasionally have a treat. A long as you continue to make healthy food choices the majority of the time, an occasional indulgence need not be sacrificed.



{ {RWO’S MENTALLY MENTAL THINKING HEALTH} } “Sometimes, we fail to achieve our new year’s resolutions because we’re trying to change our behavior on our own.”

If we fail to track our progress toward our goals, we’re more unlikely to reach them. Improving your performance on a regular basis will provide positive feedback. In turn, this will provide additional motivation to keep working toward your goals. Always remember that slow, steady progress toward your goals is far preferable to initial, but short-lived success. Keeping a food diary is an excellent way to be honest with yourself about the types of things that you’re consuming, as well as their amounts. You might want to list the emotions that you’re experiencing 402


when you overeat, so as to establish a relationship between your moods and your excessive consumption. When we’re impatient about reaching our goals, new year’s resolutions will fail. Maybe your resolution is to lose weight. It’s so important to remember that it took time to gain the weight, so it’s going to take time to lose it. This is a difficult mindset to adopt in our age of instant gratification. If our goals were quick and easy to reach, more people would successfully meet them.

Feeling overwhelmed about a new year’s resolution leads to less success in achieving it. Changing your diet for an entire year is a daunting objective, whereas changing your diet for the next week is much more manageable. Try to set small, manageable goals. You’ll have a much more realistic chance of meeting them. A string of successfully meeting small goals eventually becomes the satisfaction of reaching a large goal. You can do it!

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Healing post 2020 after a flood of unprecedented emotions and high level stress will be the key to moving forward. There’s been no easy navigation through the aftermath of Covid, political divisiveness and the emotional overwhelm we have experienced. Hibernation sounds pretty comforting right about now. So, where do we begin to heal from this traumatic mark left behind on our hearts, minds and souls? Navigating this new way of being while reflecting on the lessons we have been served may be the key. Do you recall how we all wanted to bid a resounding Sayonara to 2019? We were happy to get a new start and the year 2020 sounded infinitely better. Silly us. On New Year’s Eve, I wrote out in my journal before the ball dropped about exactly how I was going to make 2020 “My Year!” You can feel free to guess how well that worked out for me. Fairly similar yours? Nothing close to what I had imagined for myself and those around me. I had set goals for my art, my teaching, bodies of work I wanted and needed to create; how I was going to be better as a human being. Little did I know how deeply we all would be tested. Most of those goals became irrelevant and quickly set aside. Our family, like so many others, had several trials that left us frail and frayed. I was sure I wouldn’t make it through in a dignified or graceful way. I have been a “fixer” since I was 7 years old. My mom became ill and I was the oldest child. My dad relied on me to keep a watch out 406


for my sister and brother. To make sure I helped my mom throughout the day or after school. Much was expected of me at too young an age. My childhood set me up for a lifelong struggle with healthy boundaries and perfectionism. I had forgotten how to be mindful. Once I lost my awareness and connection to God (or love-whatever term you choose

to use), my ability to work on creative solutions fell away. It temporarily closed off my ability to just “be” and hear the quiet voices leading me towards my given path. To be left with no real ways to fix Covid’s effects, we were thrown into a true wake up call. It was a glaring light on how disconnected we had all become from the light inside us and one

another. We also found that it’s okay to have vulnerabilities that point us toward the fragility of life and how important it is to take stock of what truly matters. Have you begun to look back at pre 2020 and now realize how much time you wasted making things “just right” for far too long? That maybe it was pretty great “as is?” I think I’ve spent the entirety of this year doing just that and now wanting to make up for lost time. Seeing how quickly life can be here and gone; how precious every second is has been one you no longer can take lightly or turn your back on. It sits like an elephant in the living room. She’s your call to action towards something higher and more meaningful than the old “perfect.” 2020 showed each of us our depth of strength and courage to be perfectly imperfect. Since our recent move this past summer to simplify our lives, I have begun to live more intentionally. I have slowed down so that I can speed up. I am much more effective at quieting my mind and seeing myself, those I love and my work in a whole new light. Instead of trying to do and be everything and not seeing what really mattered, I am learning to be okay with just being me while tending to my own backyard. Releasing that judgement and allowing has been incredibly calming for my heart. Now I can have days that I am falling flat on my face and be okay with it. If all I can do is cry that day? Well, that’s okay too. Ebbing and flowing with life without fear or reservation is my goal. My creativity has been slowly returning




{ SHIFT+CONTROL } { MANIFESTING YOUR TRUE PURPOSE } “Since our recent move this past summer to simplify our lives, I have begun to live more intentionally. I have slowed down so that I can speed up.”

in a more serene and intentional way. It is now one in which I am able to begin my own healing journey. I know we are supported by something bigger and more beautiful than anything we can ever dream of. That gives me solace and a release of what I had set up as expectations on what “should have been.” Once we begin our own healing, we can then help lift others up to do the same. That healing within us can be humbling and fill our hearts with deep gratitude. I have found that there’s a safety for people within our circle when they see our vulnerability and the willingness to not only be comfortable in it, but to withstand taking professional or qualified guidance. It can strengthen us to take the baby steps necessary to begin our healing process. As they say, when we know better, we must do better. During my art classes this last year, they have become a safe place to rest and recharge for my students. It just felt like something we all needed. It has been a beautiful, communal energy that feels calming and nurturing. Releasing judgement of ourselves, our work and others becomes our comforting place to fall. We can fashion beautiful lives by not placing parameters on what we think is right or by placing self-imposed limits on our perceived abilites. Once we are free from our those cages, we get to soar. You may fall down at initially but you are allowed to keep on trying. Just don’t give up. Your reason for being here is greater than you even know. The only to way to discover that nugget is to keep moving forward. Dust yourself off and do it again and again. Eventually, you will 408


either fly or move on to a better mode of transportation for your dreams. You always have options that not even 2020 can take away from you. Think about it. You survived this last year. That, in and of itself is noteworthy. In “The War of Art; Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles,” by Steven Pressfield, he tell us, “Our job in this life is not to shape

tell, whether it is through story telling, art, writing, journaling, song or dance... any creative means, it opens up the possibility for all of us to do the same. Will your work be judged? Who cares?! Their opinion is of no matter to you, nor is it any of your business. Who needs that, anyway? You were the one brave enough to declare it. Not allowing fear to overtake you and hold you back is a gift you give yourself to continue to fly and a permission slip for the world to join in. Be brave today. Make 2021 a year that you take stock in your growth of living in a state of grace and being fully aligned with love. Too afraid to start? Reach out and receive the help unapologetically. It’s always available to you. We all need it and it is really okay to not be okay right now. Just don’t stay there. Once you are through the pain, feeling healed and new, share that creative journey of finding your way again with others you love and trust. That story of yours is a new and wonderful addition to the world’s tapestry.

ourselves into some ideal we imagine we ought to be, but to find out who we already are and become it.” He also goes on to tell the reader that doing this work should not be for fame, fortune or applause. Doing our work should be for the sake of it. It is meant to be shared and seen. This is what helps to not only heal us but all those it touches. When we tell our story through creativity, you are now able to own it. It is yours to

My Plan for 2021: To see the east coast from our RV beginning this month until the end of March. I hope to do things that are beautifully uncomfortable. Please follow me on IG (@lisawagnerart) to see my journey and share in it. Why not try your hand at some of my daily prompts I’ll be giving. Let’s share in the joy of creating a life that is free flowing and colorful. There is self-love and healing to be found and nurtured there.









A white Christmas is defined as 1” of snow on the ground in the morning of December 25th. It doesn’t have to be snowing on Christmas. The best chance of a white Christmas is in the New England due to the recent Northeast that blanketed the region. I’ve never been to New England for Christmas even when I lived in Long Island it was always a trip back to Upstate New York hopscotching between Utica and Rochester. The venture to Connecticut isn’t longer or shorter than the run to Destination Thanksgiving, but the chance of winter weather is a higher risk. head of the trip, I have been watching a number of Christmas movies including Christmas in Connecticut filmed in 1945 about a columnist who was supposedly an famous expert on marriage, who is aked by her publisher to host a national hero for Christmas Dinner at her Connecticut home, but must scramble to keep the secret she is single and can’t cook along with not own a home. She falls in Love with her guest – a romantic comedy. , yet the Like with most people preparation and planning is part of the holiday season with first thing first. The selection of Christmas card and gathering of the address list for those I intend to

mail out with a reserve for unexpected arrivals. My sequence next includes the making of Christmas cookies and over the years I ’ve paired the ten different varieties to just a few, but always frosted cut-outs is a must using my mom’s recipe handed down. Trying to find the perfect presents for me begins over the summer. This year was more difficult due to the cancellation of the festivals

and other annual events gain strides early. I have to rely on the previous options which means food – I like to buy local and craft items to personalize the gift. Again, I try to avoid the latest trendy purchase as they go from high attention to on the shelf gathering dust from neglect. My family knows they what to expect as a baseline of Finger Lakes

Riesling and home-made apple sauce plus some specific presents targeted to what I think they might like (that’s the tricky ones taking deeper thought and investigation). As a winemaker and wine writer, the gift of wine is a great idea. We had announced 50% savings on the shipping cost of our wine to all the states where allowed by New York State and twenty-four countries around the world. The Direct to Consumer wine market has increased dramatically to a significant not previous anticipated as you can shocooking, and p at home and delivered without issue. So again, like Thanksgiving, families will be distanced due to travel restrictions. Christmas Eve is the time of celebration and we’ll be visiting friends and her adult children that I have previously met. My friend moved back to Rochester last year so she does miss West Hartford and hadn’t returned as yet. Her kids are great living independently with a good job and career in the military as well continuing their education in college and graduate school respectively. We’re staying at a Hilton Garden Inn where I maintain an Honor program made a reservation before Halloween to not have worry about ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: JANUARY EDITION 2021


{ TRAVEL WITH AGNESS WINE }CELLARS } { SHIFT+CONTROL “So I’m exploring a Connecticut antique store where I’m certainly going to find a hidden gem or two. On the Connecticut Antique Trail where there’s 60 antique shops, add to the trip some time to discover treasures.”

a place to sleep without concern. Over Christmas week, holiday travelers will try to make last minute arrangements when many people are doing the same thing. When my friend’s son came to Rochester last Christmas, he did had difficulty trying to securing a Hotel or Bed and Breakfast, yet lucked out with a cancellation from December 23rd to the 26th period. Are her kids excited? I definitely think they are anticipating the visit as much as she is as not being able to see them with a Covid 19 travel restrictions. Christmas Eve has always begin a festive time of celebration for me being with family and preparing a variety of tasty options to delight everyone’s palate 412


and more than pleaty for seconds and leftovers. Something that I really enjoy attending midnight mass since my kids were old enough to come along as well. Being out of town, trying to get to mass isn’t possible with the distancing and number of those who due to the capacity, but applied for Christmas Day mass and received confirmation ahead of time. My meal plans will include serving modified version of seven fishes so currently steamed lobster and clam chowder along with other delicious seaford like scallop and shrimp – yes all great food pairings with Riesling. I remember a Christmas Eve in the ‘70’s which was looking like a green

Christmas. I stayed up late wishing for snow and awoke to lake effect snow of more than 2 feet. While in Connecticut, I’ll be staying at the Hilton Garden Inn in Windsor, CT and visiting the town of Granby outside Hartford to the Maple View Farm & Brewery, the Cambridge House Brew Pub and the Salmon Brook Antique shop. I’m told that the craft beers in Connecticut are quite delicious. So I’m exploring a Connecticut antique store where I’m certainly going to find a hidden gem or two. On the Connecticut Antique Trail where there’s 60 antique shops, add to the trip some time to discover treasures.


“Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.” - Buddha At Blissful Balance our mission is to help you to live life healthier. Let us help you to author your own health. Offering wellness workshops, individual health coaching and essential oils.


Please contact us for a complimentary consultation 585-532-6060 or Facebook @blissfullbalanceroc Instagram blissfull_balance





By now we all expected Covid-19 to have disappeared. We thought it’ll be a quick flu like virus that popped up suddenly but would disappear in the same way. As we approach almost a year that our worlds were flipped upside down, I think its important for us to acknowledge that the coronavirus maybe around for a while. Life as we knew it seems like a distant memory, even though it was less than 365 days ago. It is important to accept these changes, and adapt our previous ways of living into a new reality.

A great way to reconnect and relieve stress is having a paint night in. One activity I’d strongly suggest for those who are 21 and up is an inhouse wine tasting. Its as simple as buying a few bottles of wine, cheese, and fruit. Invite a few friends over and sample wine and cheese or fruit pairings in your home. This simple and fun activity can also be done via zoom. My next stress reliever is exercise. The

We’ve all have come to terms with wearing a mask, social distancing, and ensuring that we keep ourselves and our families safe. Over the year, masks have gone from a nuisance to a fashion statement. We match them with our outfits, have some designated for work, school, and social gatherings. Some creatives have started businesses sewing, and designing masks. Larger companies have added them to their product lists, and even offer customized options. If you haven’t created a fashion collection, order a few you love and dress them up. This is one way we as a society have accepted, and adapted to COVID-19living. With depression, anxiety, and health issues on a consistent rise as the reality sets in that COVID-19 is here to stay. I’d like to share a few safe, cost effective, stress relievers. Normally I’d suggest time alone to breathe as a stress reliever. The separation covid-19 has stricken us all with I’d suggest social distance meetups, zoom calls, and if you feel comfortable small dinner gatherings. Socially distant meet ups could include exercising together in a park, and taking small a class together with an instructor. 414


covid-19 15 has impacted almost everyone. Gyms are at lower capacities and many of us have lost the drive to get fit. Exercising is not only great for your body but is amazing for your mental health. The trick is to find the best exercise regimen that works for you. I prefer yoga and Pilates as well as walking. YouTube work outs are on the rise as many of us are working out in the comfort of our homes. Finding the workout for you is simple as typing it in the search bar.

Zoom parties were an activity we never thought would the norm. A great stress reliever I’d suggest would be a zoom theme party. Gather your friends and family and select a theme. Some fun ideas could be movie fashion, a color, costumes, a food themed night and game night. Movies like “Grease”, “Coming to America”, “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”, and “Black Panther” all have many outfit and room décor ideas to pull from. If you host a zoom party, you can pick a card game or trivia and ask the questions. Family feud is a great game to play via zoom. You can keep score and whoever wins will be the next host of the game night. Zoom parties are a safe way to interact with your loved ones and relieve stress. My last and certainly not least stress reliever is finding a hobby. Covid-19 has provided a lot of alone time which provides time for deep thinking. Selfreflection and inner work have been a major change in my life. I’ve learned about the things I liked as well as things that no longer serve a purpose in my life. I’ve learned about myself, and the activities I want to continue to pursue. I’ve dived deeper into understanding plants and became a plant mom of 4. Other hobbies I’d suggest are painting, opening a business, reading, writing, coding, and one of my favorites is journaling. Covid-19 has changed the way we think, interact, and live. Although we expected it to have ended by 2021, reality is that it will continue to impact us. Activities like zoom parties, social distance meetups and finding activities we enjoy will all assist in coping with our new reality. Although we maybe physically apart I hope you find comfort in knowing that we are all in this fight together.






Here is Psychic Astrology for January 2021. ARIES JANUARY 2021 The focus is on finance this month. You may reach your potential in an earned income and a steady cash flow throughout. It’s also a lucrative time with professional opportunities, if your thinking of starting a business now is the time. Big news awaits you when Venus and Pluto are in conjunction on January 28th. The full moon on this day may also see you going in a different direction where love is concerned. TAURUS JANUARY 2021 You go charging into 2021 on overdrive holding so much strength and verve, ready to take on the world and anything that stands in your way. If you’re involved in anything to do with the media there is every chance for success. This month involves a lot of mind expansion with education which will give you a spiritual and intellectual lift. Your extra efforts in a work situation rewards you financially. With mercury turning retrograde on January 30th be cautious when making decisions in the workplace. If you act on an impulse in your love life there can be a passionate reward. GEMINI JANUARY 2021 You may feel like hibernating but it is the result of a very busy 2020. Taking care of your physical and 416


emotional wellbeing is essential this month. Fortunately, your finances will not suffer during this relaxed time as you may get an unexpected monetary boost from a bonus or a surprise gift which is an uplifting amount. January 28th may signal news about a past love which can change your future and it can bring an emotional reflective time which has a healing effect. CANCER JANUARY 2021 Your love life is under the spotlight this month as 2021 starts with underlying passion which all looks promising. If you’re already in a relationship your bond becomes deeper. You will have to watch your finances and check every detail of your bank balance and ensure you sort out debts you owe to others. The full moon on January 28th is in your income sector and you will need to be more thrifty with your money and make a future plan for the rest of the year. LEO JANUARY 2021 Your career is highlighted as 2021 begins. Mars moves to the top of your chart which will make you more successful than any other sign. A great month for promotion, a new career path or a new business. You simply cannot fail. It’s a month for letting people know how much you love them but also letting people know how much they have hurt you. It will be quite a dramatic rollercoaster where emotions are

concerned and you may rethink close relationships and start a fresh elsewhere. VIRGO JANUARY 2021 Mars enters your 9th house of morality and intellectual expansion. It’s time to let your skeletons out of the closet and speak your truth regardless of the consequences. You have been holding back for too long, it’s time to speak up and speak out. In love - it’s time to link up with someone special you have been waiting for. If you’re in a couple there could be news of a baby. In a work situation you must take time to check details on a project. LIBRA JANUARY 2021 January 8th brings an abundance of positive energy to your home life. On January 13th the moon is in your family sector and there is a celebration on course or a new beginning for you and your family. You may be looking at relocating. If you are romantically involved with someone you may re-evaluate the situation as it may not reach your expectations. You may question if they are right for you. Your work life will have a revamp as somebody new enters with good reflective energy. SCORPIO JANUARY 2021 Your career has glittering prospects near the full moon on January 28th. You’re in the spotlight for an award or reward. Harmony is within your love life as you’ve rekindled it by

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putting a lot of effort in. Domestic life is not without its mishaps, check your security around your home there could be a dispute with a neighbour but your smooth talking puts it all right. If you’re thinking of going into business with someone now is the time to find that right partner. SAGITTARIUS JANUARY 2021 You will start 2021 feeling in charge, it is a promising time for attracting money through your own efforts. Big opportunities create even more of a cash flow. You have the Midas touch this month. If you work for a boss now is the time to ask for a raise. Stamina and assertiveness helps you meet and beat all the deadlines, and you are in demand. Someone important is noticing your talent. Your love life is smooth sailing and not much drama of late as you both seem to be steering in the same direction. CAPRICORN JANUARY 2021 The love planet venus moves into your sign on January 8th placing you in a magnificent position. You will radiate gorgeous vibes. There are plenty of romantic opportunities with that 418


someone special. If your single there will be an abundance of offers. A full moon on January 28th is bringing in financial changes and you need to put your accounts in order and review your budgeting plans especially after buying a highly priced item. AQUARIUS JANUARY 2021 It’s time to take stock of the past and

the choices you made and realise how they have shaped your current reality. You will move forward with confidence so that you can have growth in your personal development. It will be quite a philosophical month but you will feel the power of re-awakening within you and this will put you on a personal path that is more nurturing. The full

moon falls in your partnership sector on January 28th where you will have to evaluate where you stand with that special someone. It may be a time to move out and move on. PISCES JANUARY 2021 Mars finally leaves your money sector on January 6th and you’re no longer feeling the drain of 2020. Signing papers and declarations may be a part of improving your finances. You now have the confidence to speak out for what you need. Your social life will improve and take a much more positive turn as friends show their true worth. A new friendship may see a romance blossom between you. It’s certainly a month to create the financial stability you have needed for some time. 2021 will be so much more positive. HAPPY NEW YEAR! A time of Renewal,Progress & New Hope Blessings Angela McGhee e.mail- +44(0)778 956 3169




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