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“The holiday season is the perfect time to reflect on our blessings and seek out ways to make life better for those around us.”




On our cover this month we have the the truly beautiful Jennifer Johnson Esposito photographed at the Golisano Children’s Hospital and “Grace’s Garden” by Charlene Mann Photography.



his is the time of year when we are giving thanks to everything we are grateful for. This year

Thank You Kitty VanBortel for your incredible donation to fallen Rochester Police Officer Manuel “Manny� Ortiz fundraiser.





Kelly Breuer Tammy Reese Kelly Breuer Charlene Mann Ford Christopher “Goodknews” Cardwell Marisa Nicodemus Michael Crisifulli Vine Photography Jim Hooper Tammy Reese Cheryl Kates-Benman Robin DeWind Olga Monacell Alana Cahoon Lucy Succhetti Glenna Colaprete-Hudson Lisa Wagner Judi Swanson Dr Larry Peshkin Christina McDonald Sherry Hale Sam Khalil Denise Karma Clifford Mona Ockenden Deb Genrich Christine Limuti Giovanna Walton Pam Denton Tracy Simone Becky Picone Katie Melia Kaitlyn Vittozzi kathleen elaine Kelly Wahl Ellen Feldman Nicole Bianchi d’Anna

Robin Hertz Daniel Baldwin Marisa Leigh Zeppieri-Caruana Karen Kirn Lay’Lah Tammy Vreeland Cortney Krueger Renee Soucy Amy Colombo Brenda Gilasso Bonnie Floyd Sandy Arena Nina Purhenn Kristin Bauer-Gross Erin Crowley Kait Lyn Caitlin Hummel Kelly Springer Thalia Pabon Emily Pangburn Rebecca & Danielle of Glow Fashion

Kelly Breuer Katie Lawler-Melia The Next Design Casey Marie

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 © 2017 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.



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Rochester Woman Online recently had the pleasure of sitting down for a question and answer session with the truly beautiful and inspiring Jennifer Johnson. Here is what she had to say, and boy was it amazing.

tools, the expertise and the dedication to try and pull off a miracle. It worked. Our daughter Grace was born here in September of 2011. There

Q1 What made you choose your current career? What are your accomplishments in the field? In 2011 I was pregnant with our second child when an ultrasound showed serious issues. Our baby had a birth defect called a Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH). We quickly learned that half of the babies who have CDH pass away soon after birth. The half that survives can expect major surgeries and months in the hospital. More testing revealed our baby’s CDH was severe. I went into mama bear mode by researching and reaching out to hospitals across the country, even visiting one that said we needed to move there for our baby’s care because she would need a long list of equipment and highly trained staff to operate that equipment. We brought that list of needs back to Golisano Children’s Hospital where we found out all we needed was right here. What a relief! No one anywhere truly expected that our baby would survive but at least I knew that we would be giving birth in a place that had all the 22


constant kindness and honesty about what was happening. Seventy –two days later Grace was able to come home! She needed a feeding tube, oxygen and medications around the clock but she was home, finally with her big sister Avery. Grace was followed closely by many specialists here at the hospital and would need more surgeries but she continued to defy the odds with a big smile and bright blue eyes. A problem that stemmed from her CDH was tracked and monitored closely and had not been an issue at all… until it became a big issue during surgery in February of 2013. Grace survived a day long surgery but passed away as the PICU team tried their very best to save her. I will forever be in awe of how each member of this hospital cared for Grace and us. It has been a pleasure to share her story and let everyone know what a special place this hospital is. So much went right with her care. But there was room for improvement and it has felt good to be able to raise these concerns with hospital leadership, be heard and see some changes happen as a result.

were quickly many ups and downs when we almost lost Grace and had to make decisions about whether to continue her care or let her pass. As the staff cared for Grace, they cared for us too with

The addition of Dr. Pat Brophy as Chair of the Department of Pediatrics and physician-in-chief of Golisano Children’s Hospital in 2018 has been an incredible. He has said he values the role and insight of parents in the care of children and has proved this to be true by not only listening to my thoughts but seeking them out. I enjoyed my nine years as anchor and reporter at 13WHAM News (eight years at News 10NBC before






{ COVER STORY } “I will forever be in awe of how each member of this hospital cared for Grace and us. It has been a pleasure to share her story and let everyone know what a special place this hospital is.”

that) tremendously and am so grateful for the platform it allowed me to tell patient stories, spotlight research and help with hospital fundraisers. However I was spending more and more of my free time on hospital-related issues. A year ago I wrote down all my ideas and goals and asked if it made more sense to work on these issues from a role within the hospital. Thus was born my role as the newly created position of Director of Family and Community Outreach at Golisano Children’s Hospital.

the clock care but we were also having to find and manage a team of roughly 30 of her caregivers. It was like running a small company comprised of doctors, home nurses, therapists, medical suppliers, etc., not to mention the mountains of paperwork that came with it. All of these entities impacted one another but they weren’t set up to communicate with each other. Each change each person made had to be communicated to the group and

I have been floored by the support from our community for Grace, my family, other patient families and the staff here! The ways in which people help are creative and so touching. I’m excited to be able to help and support more of these fundraisers and let the public know how appreciative we really are. I’ve also been amazed at how resource-rich our community is in terms of organizations that exist to help families in crisis – be it medical or otherwise. However, I think there is a growing acknowledgement in the community that we can do a better job of working together to help these individuals - that was my takeaway from being Grace’s mom. We were so thrilled when she came home from the hospital but it was a very stressful time. Not only were we as a family learning and managing her very delicate around

that was up to us as parents to do (and any and all of the follow-up questions – many of them very technical). This was my family’s experience and I have heard similar stories from other families. I’ll repeat, we have a very caring community and many resources ready to help families. I don’t think the above scenario has happened because people don’t care. I think you learn so much by

going through the process and many of the people who have gone through this process are busy taking care of kids with medical needs and might not have time to advocate for changes that might make the process easier. That is what I hope to do in this role: be an advocate for patients and their families. That includes both while in the hospital and once they are home. I hope to create closer ties with organizations that also support our patients and families. When families leave the hospital I want them to already feel connected to these organizations – both the resources they provide and the other families they serve as connecting with families in the same boat can be hugely beneficial. Q2. What obstacles have you overcome in your life? Certainly having a medically fragile child and losing her at almost 17 months old has been a challenge but one I have learned so much from. I am a better person because of Grace... but this took work. Grief takes a huge toll. Addressing the PTSD from almost losing her many times and then her actual death has been a concentrated effort. These emotions once felt like a heavy weight. Now, thanks to therapy, I concentrate on what Grace taught me and continues to teach me. It feels good to use these lessons to help others and I ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019






“My kids have taught me to be less selfish, to stop and enjoy the moment, to explore things I never would have explored before, to laugh because it feels good, to practice what I preach and to love without condition.”






{{ COVER COVER STORY STORY }} “I have been floored by the support from our community for Grace, my family, other patient families and the staff here! The ways in which people help are creative and so touching.”

I now wake up inspired and grateful rather than consumed by sadness. Q3 who is the most significant person in your life and why? My daughters and my husband. Avery is our oldest. Grace was our middle child. Luciana is our youngest. My kids have taught me to be less selfish, to stop and enjoy the moment, to explore things I never would have explored before, to laugh because it feels good, to practice what I preach and to love without condition.

My husband Vinnie Esposito is my rock. I’ve always been pretty independent but he centers me and this has become more and more important to me as we grow and change as individuals and as a couple. I appreciate his listening ear and honest feedback. He amazes me with the details and stress he handles daily, all the while showing respect and building relationships along the way. He demonstrates how to not be petty. He encourages me be tough when I need to be also allows me to fall apart when necessary - which has happened several times since Grace entered our life. He loves me for who I am which has evolved over our 11 years of marriage.

Q4. Where can we expect to see you in five years? Professionally I have just started this new job but I would not have left the one career (TV journalism) I have ever known if I did not believe in it. I have ideas of what I want to achieve in this job but I am also taking the time to learn what is already in motion here at the Children’s Hospital and URMC - it’s an incredible place. Personally I have loved helping to coach my daughters’ soccer teams. I grew up playing sports and still use a lot of what I learned through them: teamwork, pushing yourself, recognizing the strengths of ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019




“I am grateful to have lead the coverage of 13WHAM’s participation including raising money for Grace’s Garden at the hospital which is a healing garden in my daughter’s name.”

others as well as my own weaknesses and showing appreciation for those who support you. I love watching them enjoy these things but encourage their other interests too including theater, art and singing. My husband and I just completed the Four Season Challenge which is a half marathon in each season. That combined with 2 full marathons completed in the past, I might cool it on the distance running for a little while. I’ve really started to enjoy spin classes and other workout classes at M/Body. Q5. What are some of your most memorable experiences? From a professional stand point I am 30


proud of the reporting work we did covering Hurricane Katrina along the Gulf Coast for 3 weeks. We found out what people needed there and Rochester responded to our reports by giving, including Kodak that donated disposable cameras for people to document damage from the storm for insurance purposes.

helped take away some of the stigma. Seeing how information can lead to understanding and tolerance made me want to be a journalist. A story I did about a young man in the Rochester area who is struggling with CFS has been published internationally and is often used by CFS advocacy groups.

I became a journalist because I got sick as a teenager and could not pursue my passion of playing sports. At the time the illness I had, called Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), was not very understood. For years the public had little sympathy for CFS patients. A 1994 Boston Globe article about my battle

Finally, using the TV platform to raise money and awareness for Golisano Children’s Hospital has been both a personal and professional highlight. I am grateful to have lead the coverage of 13WHAM’s participation including raising money for Grace’s Garden at the hospital which is a healing garden in my








{ {SHIFT+CONTROL COVER STORY } } “Certainly having a medically fragile child and losing her at almost 17 months old has been a challenge - but one I have learned so much from.”

daughter’s name. I hear weekly from people about how much this space has meant to them. Q6 how have the changes in media (increased social media) affected your career? Social media has given us each a platform to share more of our lives. Reporters and anchors are able to share more with an audience than what people see on TV. And the audience can share more with the people they invite into their homes each day. That can allow us to see more of how we are alike - and that feels good to know we are not alone in whatever we have going on. This helped me as a journalist and a mom connect with others who may have had a sick child and/ or lost a child. It made me realize the need for the job I now have at the Children’s Hospital. But while social media has allowed us to relax the walls that separated us before, it has not meant journalists can relax their standards. We must still have at least two credible sources and we must still state fact and not opinion when it comes to the news. In this day and age of social media, almost anyone can represent herself or himself as a journalist and because of this the public might take as fact something that

does not meet the threshold of what a journalist would consider based in fact. I think this has led to confusion. I think it has allowed people to carve “their truth” out of the bigger picture. When everyone is eager to prove they are

right and to prove that a different view point is wrong are we really listening to each other? It’s sad that some really good and important reporting is being dismissed because some people don’t believe reporting without bias is still

possible. Q7 what are your hobbies? I do enjoy exercise but would say my favorite hobby is carving out family time. The work week is busy and we enjoy many charity fundraisers throughout the year but nothing beats a quiet night with a family movie or dinner with extended family and friends on our back porch. Q7 what social issues are you most passionate about? I am set up for success in life. I have a safe and warm home, a loving and supportive partner, an income and reliable transportation. Still, caring for and then losing our daughter was a challenge that tested all I had. I stay awake at night wondering how others who face more challenges in life might fare in a similar situation and it scares me. I’m not the doctor or nurse or researcher who is trying to cure or treat children but through this job I want to make a family’s journey easier by smoothing out some of the non-necessary bumps in the road. When our family was in crisis I had to not only connect the dots but find some of the dots in the first place. I want to take this stress away from an already stressed family. We thank Jennifer for sharing her amazing story with us, and wish her the very best on her new adverture. The best is truly yet to come. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


“I enjoyed my nine years as anchor and reporter at 13WHAM News (eight years at News 10NBC before that) tremendously and am so grateful for the platform it allowed me to tell patient stories, spotlight research and help with hospital fundraisers.”



MARIO’S hair salon Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.

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Across the U.S. each year, approximately 6.5 million companion animals enter an animal shelter. The majority of these animals are strays, rescues and surrenders. Unchecked stray populations tend to grow in areas without affordable spay/ neuter services. Animals rescued from cruelty can come from situations like hoarding cases, dog fighting rings and puppy mills. These animals often suffer from trauma and require extra care and rehabilitation.

cats by adopting healthy animals into loving homes, promoting the humananimal bond through outreach, education and advocacy, spaying and neutering to end the suffering of overpopulation and to improve public health and the humane and compassionate treatment of all animals. OUR THREE PILLARS INCLUDE: Animal Rescue: Mobile Transport Program: Used to rescue

The Animal Care Sanctuary’s Lifesaving Mission: Our lifesaving mission envisions a community that promotes turning compassion into action for dogs and 40


OWNER SURRENDER Community Collaboration: Community Clinic: Providing low cost spay/neuter and other services to the community including wellness visits Pet Food Pantry: We serve low income, elderly, veterans and those facing job loss who may otherwise be unable to care for their pets due to financial hardship. Public Dog Park: First and only dog park in Wellsboro, PA. Love on a Leash: Therapy dog training Education: Humane education programs: For preschool through college age students

Surrendered animals are animals whose owners can no longer care for them due to financial, behavioral or other unforeseen barriers. Many shelters struggle to adopt out all—or even most—of the animals who enter their facilities. Of the approximately 6.5 million companion animals who enter shelters, every year, approximately 1.5 million animals are euthanized. Of the dogs entering shelters, approximately 20% are euthanized. Of the cats entering shelters, over 25% are euthanized.

in exchange for food, water and shelter.

Pre-Veterinary Internship Program Behaviorist Consultations: For adopters to help adopters and animals transition to their forever home. dogs and cats from other shelters across the country and to transport community companion animals for low cost spay/ neuter/vaccination services. ADOPTIONS Foster Program Smokey’s Fund: Emergency Fund for senior/special needs animals Barn Cat Program: Adoption of spay/ neuter/vaccinated feral “working” cats

Advocacy: Engaging lawmakers on the importance of animal welfare legislation SUMMARY: Thanks to our supporters, the Animal Care Sanctuary has been rescuing animals for over 50 years. On any given day, hundreds of dogs and cats are in residence. They come from closing or overrun shelters, areas hit by disaster, owner surrenders, or are abandoned, mistreated or have

{ SPECIAL FEATURE } “The three main pillars that guide their work are animal rescue/adoption, community collaboration and education. ”



{ SPECIAL FEATURE } “In addition to being one of the few US shelters with licensed veterinarians, they offer the only known live-in college internship program in shelter medicine/shelter management of companion animals in the nation.”

Since we have our own veterinary and behavioral team, we are able to give these animals the TIME & CARE they need. Some of the animals we take in would not have a chance in most shelters. Some may have been badly mistreated, never received veterinary care, or never known human kindness.


our programs offer pet food pantries and our clinics offer thousands of affordable spay/neuter surgeries every year.

Being a no kill shelter, allows us the time to find the perfect family for each of our animals.

Our animals, adopters, donors, volunteers and staff are extremely proud of the national recognition earned for our innovative programs. One of which is our participation in Maddie’s Fund, which is the fulfillment of a promise to create a no-kill nation where every dog and cat is guaranteed a healthy home or habitat.

As part of our community engagement,



The Animal Care Sanctuary has always been absolutely committed to preservation of life. Euthanasia is used rarely and only as a final resort when it has been medically determined that an animal is suffering from a medical condition that is untreatable to allow the animal to maintain quality of life, or exhibits extreme behaviors that are beyond correction and that are deemed unsafe to other pets, people, and to the animal itself. These decisions are only made after careful deliberation by medical staff and other staff affected such as the cattery director, canine care







{{ SPECIAL FEATURE }} SHIFT+CONTROL “ACS is leading the way as an example of innovation in rural shelter and companion animal care and seeks to continue to not only serve the residents of their community but to reach out to over-crowded under resourced shelters and rescues across the country.”

director, behaviorist, executive director and, ultimately, the Board of Directors.

free behavioral counseling and advice for both cats and dogs.

intervention programs designed to create a culture of empathy and compassion.

The Animal Care Sanctuary is one of the few shelters in the nation that has it’s own veterinary staff. It has adopted the standards of the American Association of Shelter Veterinarians and participates in Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at Cornell’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

On any given day there are hundreds of animals in residence. The adoption program consistently adopts out approximately 90% of the animals that are taken in, on an annual basis. The sanctuary’s adoption process takes into consideration the needs and lifestyles of both the adopter and the pet. Animals that are not adopted, remain

The Animal Care Sanctuary believes that in order to be a better friend to animals, we must create a more respectful and compassionate community. Humane education teaches how to establish a human animal bond based on kindness, respect, and responsibility.

The Sanctuary achieved it’s founder’s (Lesley Sinclair’s) dream of also opening community clinics offering low-cost spay/ neuter, vaccinations and wellness services allowing pet owners to keep their animals in their homes. Prior to any adoptions, each animal receives a physical, and as needed, the veterinarian meets with the adopter to explain any outstanding medical conditions, how to care for the animal, and any required follow-up. Having resident veterinarians also ensures that all shelter animals are vaccinated, checked for parasites and disease, spayed or neutered, microchipped, and are healthy and ready for adoption. To assist pet owners, the Animal Care Sanctuary offers animal care workshops, dog training courses, pet food pantries, a canine behavior helpline and a special emergency fund for senior and special needs animals. The sanctuary also offers

at the sanctuary where quality of life takes precedence. While approximately half of the adoptions are in Pennsylvania, the other half are in NY, NJ and across the U.S. Public education is another important component of working toward a no kill nation. Humane education serves as a strategy for large-scale change in the quality of animals lives through prevention and

The Animal Care Sanctuary introduces preschoolers to pets at daycare centers and libraries and teaches the joys and responsibilities of pet ownership to elementary and junior high school students. From preschoolers learning how to safely interact with animals, to middle school students being exposed to the anti-cruelty movement, to high school students exploring careers with animals, we offer Humane Education Programs that are designed for specific groups. As an example, the sanctuary is one of 14 participating sites in a national pilot program, Veterinary Science Initiative taught by secondary school science teachers in collaboration with shelter directors. This program was developed by the education team at the Charleston Animal Society in South Carolina, as a model for cooperative education between shelters, veterinarians, and other private ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


SPECIAL FEATURE FEATURE }} {{ SPECIAL “ACS is solely funded by donations, sponsors and foundation grants.”

organizations to collaborate with local school districts. The Animal Care Sanctuary also offers a unique and exciting experience in a no-kill animal shelter gravitating towards the arts. This internship provides opportunities in art in a variety of areas involved in promoting and advertising shelter animals and is ideal for art students with majors in graphic design and photography who are looking to expand their skill set and gain invaluable experience in using their designs and passion for making a difference. 48


Interns are given the opportunity to experience a nonprofit, no kill shelter housing hundreds of animals. treatment of animals. The Animal Care Sanctuary also strongly embraces cooperation across animal shelters. Historically, most animal shelters operated as separate entities, and communication and collaboration was limited; due in part to disapproval of other shelters’ practices, protocols, and general operation, and also due to competition for donations and adopters. The sanctuary for many years, has

embraced the model of partnerships and relationships that encourage collaboration and teamwork. One of the many benefits to these relationships is the incredible effect that transports and transfers can have on our efforts to save the lives of more animals. Some recent examples include working with our cat partners in New England (who have a shortage of highly adoptable cats). In 2017, they were able to take 100 of our cats over a year’s time to place with adopters in their area. The best part

{{ SPECIAL SHIFT+CONTROL FEATURE }} “In addition to the record-breaking adoptions, as of October 2019, their vet team performed 2,200 spay/neuter surgeries and over 4,000 wellness visits and the year is not over yet!”

is that those 100 cats being transferred then made room for us to take 100 more cats, who otherwise may not have had as bright a future. On the dog side, we were able to accept over 70 dogs and puppies from local shelters and from a shelter partner in Alabama. In addition to the more traditional approach of trap/spay/neuter/release programs to address the problem of feral cat overpopulation, the sanctuary also provides an alternative option: barn cat placement. For cats that prefer minimal to no human contact, and are not suited to be indoor pets, they can however, thrive as working cats, policing against rodents and pests for the small price of food, water, and a dry place to sleep and shelter from the weather. The sanctuary will spay/ neuter, vaccinate these cats against rabies and distemper, and give a dose a flea preventative and dewormer before being placed. This means they are healthy and ready for the life of an outdoor cat, at no cost to the adopter, and will never populate the adopter’s property with kittens. Barn cats are suitable to be working cats in many environments, including warehouses, greenhouses, breweries, wineries, and residential homes. They do require access to shelter in a permanent building or 50


structure like a shed, barn, stable, or garage, which must be at least half a mile from busy roads. They also require daily food and water. Our Love On A Leash program trains adopted animals (from the Animal

Care Sanctuary as well as other shelters) to become therapy animals who are comfortable around walkers, wheelchairs, canes, crutches and beeping machines. After the formal training the pets go to assisted living and skilled nursing centers to

greet and meet the residents. The program graduates are then also ready for hospital visits. Within hospitals, the intent is to help address employee compassion fatigue (i.e. the physical and mental exhaustion and emotional withdrawal experienced by those that care for sick or traumatized people over an extended period of time). Pet therapy can ease the anxiety and bring welcome stress relief to the staff. This program also encompasses classrooms and library reading. Our pet therapy pets can attend classes while our volunteer or the teacher reads to the children OR the children read to the pet. The county libraries also request our therapy pets to come and interact with the pre-school children while they read a story. On a crisp fall September day, Animal Care Sanctuary, (ACS) received a call from a woman who was overwhelmed by the number of dogs in her home. She had 11 dogs living in the house and requested help. For more information, please visit www.

T hi

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He worked for a florist in Utica and after a while Giovanni decided to try it on his own. He moved his family to Rochester NY and opened Fioravanti Florist on North Street in 1920 and moved to Clifford Avenue in 1966.

Warren and John Perlo ran Fioravanti Florist from the late 1950’s to the early 1990’s. They followed their father’s formula giving quality arrangements at affordable prices and unbeatable service. Warren, John and Carmen made their father very proud of them. From the 1990’s to the present Fioravanti Florist is still making the finest floral arrangements. We may be old but we are still very fresh. Craig, Elaine, Farrah, Jill, Michele, Bonnie, and Nancy are the employees that keep Fioravanti’s fresh. We make all our arrangements as if they were for our own families.

May Be WeOld, May Be Old, ll Very But Still FRESH! Very FRESH!

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2279 Clifford Ave., Rochester, NY 14609 (585) 482-1001 | (800) 459-1004

Ave., 2279 Rochester, Clifford Ave., NYRochester, 14609 NY 14609






I love to learn the origin of things! It literally fascinates me and knowledge is power! As we inch closer to the end of the year and the beginning of a new decade, I began wondering, what does the word January actually mean? January means ‘Janus’s month’ and became the first month of the year in circa 700BC when Numa Pompilius, a Roman King, added it and February to the calendar. ... Janus is the Roman god of beginnings and endings, he is also the god of gateways, gates, doors and doorways. The word ‘janitor’ is derived from Janus.

Lets do this! First we should all decide what we want the new beginning to be. Defining it and writing it down makes it real. Declaring it speaks it into the universe! It’s how things start manifesting! STEP 1. Define what you want!

Now that I know what January means, how do I put this extraordinary new found knowledge into action? Well thats easy! For me it’s always about bettering my health. And Oddly enough, I found that the word Janitor is derived from Janus… is perfect! The clean up guru!

STEP 2. Write it down and put it where you can see it. Mine is a reminder that comes up on my phone every morning 8am! TOXINS OUT< HEALTHY IN! So turn that creative smart brain on and figure out where and how you can remind yourself best on a daily basis to call on the GOD of January! Gain strength from him! I’m also going to remind myself its a total game changer to focus on all things around me! TO change habits you have to be aware of them as they are happening and switch it up!

I absolutely LOVE this! It’s so appropriate for 2020 and a NEW YEAR! The Roman God of beginnings and endings….. and also the god of gateways, gates, doors and doorways!

extra effort to clean out the old toxins left behind. Every day being conscious of this decision!

Ill share mine. Since I explanted my toxic implants October 30 I want to clean up the toxins in my body! This is my ending of an unhealthy toxin time and my new beginning to clean it up! I took out the very toxic implants October 30 and opened the door to the possibility of a vibrant feeling great healthy life! Im going to consciously add in only healthy people, foods, environment and thoughts. I will also be making that

STEP 3. Now to Declare it! Choose wisely here. Choose people around you that want you to be the best you can be. People that support you and won’t sabatogue your goals. Intentionally or unintentionally. Choose your children or best friend, spouse, parents… Share your new formula with them. You may just inspire them to look at January and its significance and meaning of the month! I am telling everyone! You, Daniel, My Mom, Dad, kids, friends… Facebook… Im a blabbermouth! I also decided to solidify this and gain support from people that have been ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ TALKING WITH ROBIN } “CBD has been proven to help alleviate anxiety, insomnia, migraines, Tourette’s, epilepsy, neuralgia and arthritis pain just to name a few. ”

meaning of the month!

cinnamon for more flavor!

I am telling everyone! You, Daniel, My Mom, Dad, kids, friends… Facebook… Im a blabbermouth!

And, Im not taking the bait of using December as the last time to enjoy, party… eat whatever… to me this

I also decided to solidify this and gain support from people that have been successful detoxing from implants and heavy metals. The professionals! Planning on setting myself up to succeed!

Id love to hear what your new beginning will be!

Tell others and get support!

Bright Beams of Light, Robin

STEP 4. DOOOO it! Plan your route! I am gathering my supplies and making a schedule!



I am using December as the time to start becoming aware of my behaviors end old habits. December 16 is my birthday! I always reset on my birthday. Its a new year all the way around for me. Together lets call on the Roman God of January, Janus, to open the door to the vibrant new beginning of 2020 and close the door behind us!

This is an important step!

Made a list of my supplements, detox foods and binding powders. Ordering what I need and stocking up for a week at a time of the foods. Getting rid of the No No foods and drinks. Unfortunately this will include my favorite Italian coffee mate creamer and having oat milk creamer or coconut creamer with

take you out of the game before you begin! Dont set yourself up to fail!

Fo r B re a s t Im p l a n t Questions contact me Facebook AskRobinHertz Instagram Robin Hertz Wordpress AskRobinHertz.wordpress. com

is a bad technique I see it again and again and it just makes it harder on yourself. It’s actually a technique to








The holidays can be a complex time for all of us. Family, money, traveling, calories, shopping, the list goes on and on and can be intimidating to say the least. One of the things in my life I used to be terrible at in the past was my New Years resolutions. I have grown to realize that there are 4 basic rules to being successful at resolutions.

2) Set realistic goals. Let’s say it’s a diet and you are 60 pounds overweight. Make a resolution to lose 20 pounds. You can lose more later if you choose to. This way you have reached your goal and feel a sense of accomplishment. By using this technique you will put yourself in what i call “Success mode”. 3) Ask for help.

First? Let’s make sure you fully understand what a resolution is.

It’s a decision, an idea, it’s not an action yet.

1) Pick carefully something you need, not want. In picking something you need you will be far more motivated than with something you just want. Your heart will be in it more. Your desire to succeed will be greater.

Well there you have it. The DB tried and true recipe for New Years resolution success.

You can do it, I know you can. I believe in you and the power of numbers so don’t be afraid to ask for help right here.

Whether or not you are successful, well that will be determined by the action that follows.


If you choose the partner method don’t compete with each other, cheer each other on instead.

As we head towards the holidays and New Year start thinking now of what one thing that it’s time to change.

RES•O•LU•TION Noun A firm decision to do or not do something.

My intention in writing this is to share my experience, strength and hope in an effort to help you succeed in 2020.

there to push each other, remind each other and coddle each other through the tough days. When you are going through anything that’s difficult in life it’s always better to walk with someone else as opposed to alone.

Message me or anyone who comments. Let’s lift each other up. Tell your family, friends and colleagues what you are trying to do. Ask them to help you. Tell them it’s ok to remind you if you are slipping a little. Don’t be afraid to have an occasional bad day. It happens. Dust yourself off and get right back on that horse. Rome was not built in a day. 4) Pick a partner

I will write you back. We will praise you. I love being a member of a loving community. May GOD bless you and keep you. Happy New Year. DB.

Yes, find a friend or family member that needs to do the same resolution. In using the partner method you will be ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019



1823 Penfield Rd I Penfield, New York 14526



585) 586-7846 I



TIS THE SEASON TO BE CRAFTY!!!! Welcome, my name is Amy Colombo and I am a Rochesterian through and through. I grew up here, raised a family here and am now the owner of the sweetest, little DIY Crafting Studio in the heart of Rochester, The Workshop. One of our studio goals is to provide our guests with crafts that are affordable, not too complicated and make them feel proud that they have created that specific project. This is my goal for you too!! Giving you out-of-the-box ideas and easy to follow tips on how to create them! I am honored to be a part of the Rochester Woman Online Magazine. Hoping my column comes through as sweet & fun as my studio. Okay… let’s get started. I love home décor and DIYing. I have two very different styles that shift from Fall to the Holidays. During the fall, our home is very welcoming, cozy, and has that stay-a-while feeling. Neutral and warm tones throughout. It is also my favorite of all seasons and I spend the most time decorating with attention in every detail. The vibe definitely changes for the Holidays and is quite contrary to our fall decor. I would describe it as bright, traditional, tons of color with unassuming flair. Sprinkling in DIYs that my husband and kids have helped create truly have made our house a home. Here are some of my Fall & Holiday favorites!! Each inexpensive, easy-to-do and have a wow factor in their own way. Give one or all a try. HAND STAMPED TEA TOWELS First things first… this project is trending, 62


Pottery Barn inspired, and I am completely hooked! Grab some Flour Sack towels, also known as Tea Towels (I got mine on Amazon $14/pack of 12), fabric paint, letter and/or holiday stamps and cookie cutters. *Tip: Iron or steam away any creases prior to stamping. Once wrinkle free… lay flat. Pour paint onto paper plate, dip the stamp or cookie cutter into the paint & press onto the towel. Lift carefully. Continue until you have the effect you like. Allow time to dry.

Finish off with a bow using raffia, twine or ribbon. These make perfects gifts and not just during the holidays. Anytime!!! SNOW-LIKE LUMINARY JARS- Bring a warm elegance to any room in your home with this super simple project. You’ll never guess what the secret is to get the magical glow… Epson salts and Modge Podge! Ladies, the picture does not do this project justice. Grab a mason jar of any size… using a foam brush, generously brush on the Modge Podge wherever you want your glow. I brought the snowy effect right below the neck of the jar (as seen in the picture).

While the Modge Podge is still wet, using a spoon, graciously sprinkle the salt all over the jar. Shake off and allow to dry. Once dry, add a sprig of evergreen, wool yarn or twine and a tea light. Place on a silver tray and set in any room in your home and enjoy the glowy ambiance. By far, my favorite of all the DIYs here. CHRISTMAS BULB CENTERPIECE - GIRLS…this DIY centerpiece is a space changer and is so much fun!! Call your kids into the room for this one. All you need are scissors, jute or heavy-duty ribbon and plastic bulbs from any home decor store. You can do this for Fall, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years or all the above. Decide how long you’d like your centerpiece to be plus one extra foot and cut the ribbon accordingly. String the bulbs onto the ribbon and tie a knot to the first bulb. The bulbs will naturally fall into place and create the effect as seen in the picture. Secure the bulbs by tightly knotting the ribbon to the last bulb. Trim excess ribbon and display. Have fun with the colors – all neutrals, reds and greens or as I did gold, silver and turquoise. This DIY can also be made into a festive wreath or garland for a mantle. Just be sure that you give yourself enough ribbon to attach to your mantle or tie into a knot for a wreath. This will be your added touch of glitz and glamor that every room needs. Have fun with it! SUCCULENT POTS - Adorable, whimsical and great hostess gifts to bring to a Holiday party. Santa’s Belt or his RedNosed Little helper either one as cute as the other. Everything you need (including a small pot, a little paint, a couple pipecleaners & pompoms, and black paper) you can find right at your local craft store or come

RWOâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S DIY TIPS }} { {SHIFT+CONTROL










make it at our studio. Add a succulent and print a “How to Care for Your Succulent” instructions on our website. Click here These are sure to be a talking piece! HOLIDAY BRANCH DÉCOR Everyone’s got branches… you can find them just about anywhere... and one of my very favorite and inexpensive DIYs that you can use year round. There are a couple of ways to get two totally different looks. One… keep them natural. I needed a space filler for a corner in my studio…I wrapped a stack of branches with shimmery ribbon, a festive bow & lightly brushed with chalk paint. You can also use branches in a big way, as seen here, by my fellow DIYer Kati Garner did. Love how she incorporated the branches with white lights and had them standing proud waiting to welcome family & friends. Have you seen a more inviting entry? Want to add a pop of color, grab a can 66


of spray paint, any color of your choosing… autumn yellow, classic Christmas Red… endless possibilities. Adding this colorful and textural element is guaranteed the fantastic flair I was talking about!! This is also another great way to get the little ones in your life involved in decorating. Find the sticks and branches together. Once you are enjoying your updated space remind them that they played a big part in creating the look. FREE PRINTABLE ART - Last but certainly not least… make a huge statement during Thanksgiving and throughout the holidays with these “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” FREE PRINTABLES I designed just for you at The Workshop’s website. Grab a few frames (these came from the Dollar store or use what you have) and some acrylic or watercolor paints. I printed the printables on watercolor paper and added just a touch of autumn brown

& gold watercolors to the corners of the paper. (If you do not have watercolors; you can water down acrylic paint). Paint is optional. Place in frames & display on a sofa table, kitchen counter or even your fireplace. During the chaos that sometimes comes with the holidays, let us be gently reminded that it truly is The Most Wonderful Time of the Year. Click here. Thank you for reading my very first column. I look forward to being your DIY girl here at Rochester Women’s Online Magazine. If you’ve made any of the DIYs shown in this month’s edition, please email me a picture so I can show them off. Or use the hashtag #RWOMDIY. If you have any questions or would like to see us DIY something specific email me at amy@theworkshopny. com. Come visit the studio at 3101 West Ridge Road in Greece or visit our website






REFINE THE WAY YOU DINE ! If you have never been to Greece, then Kainos owner, Jeffrey Scott will bring Greece to you. If you have been to Greece, then he is all about bringing back fantastic memories of a historical and flavorful country. Come join Rochester Woman Online as we take a tour of Kainos and some amazing authentic Greek cuisine! As Rochester’s Only Authentic Greek / Mediterranean Cuisine with some American Flare, Kainos transports you to a whole new world the minute your walk through their doors. From the marble pillars, to the statues and the incredible mural of the Greek God Zues that is a central focus of the restaurant, the entire experience was amazing. A casual dining restaurant with a fine dining ambience for one and all! PLUS, in the summer (or warmer weather) you can even enjoy waterfront dining, just like you’re in Greece! Located on the river’s edge of Corn Hill at they are at 284 Exchange Blvd. 68


Kainos is a hidden gem that offers an authentic Greek experience right here in Rochester. With its marble accents and open and airy design that overlooks the water, you’ll feel like you have been transported to a location far outside of the city. Jeff who is not just the the owner, but also the head chef, is friendly and offers up a wealth of information about Greek cuisine.

He cooks each dish and oversees everything that leaves his kitchen. Fans of Greek must-haves such as Spanakopita and Dolmathakia can’t go wrong in ordering these for starters. The warm cheese and delicate filo dough of the Spanakopita will melt in your mouth, and the flavorful grape leaves combined with fresh feta and lemon provide a medley of tastes. If you are

a dessert fan like me, you are going to have some hard choices to make as each option is truly a work of art. I couldn’t get enough of the Galatoboureko, a farina based dessert with hints of lemon and vanilla, and also Jeff’s Bougatsa, a flavorful custard option. To top off any meal, consider one of their mule options or classic ouzo shots, but if you are feeling adventurous, I would suggest the Apple Pie Martini, which is hands down one of the most delicious drinks I have ever had! Whether you are stopping in with friends for a quick afterwork appetizer or drink, or are searching for a place in Rochester to bring that special someone, you can’t go wrong with the ambiance and attention to detail and flavors found at Kainos. Their seafood is brought in straight from the waters of Greece 3x a week so it truly is fresh! When we came in on Friday, Jeff joked that the sea bass he prepared for us was just swimming on Tuesday...and let me tell you it was mouthwatering!

{ PLATTER CHATTER } “This October, and every October, we renew our commitment to our vision of a community free from violence, where healthy relationships thrive. We support survivors at every step of their journey to a safe and empowered life. ”








{ PLATTER CHATTER } “What, exactly, is abusive? Where do you draw the line? What marks the difference between an unhealthy relationship and a dangerous one? Which red flag or act of abuse is the moment you decide, “enough”?”

One of their specialities that is a must try is their flaming Saganaki “OPA!”. People come from all over for this incredible flaming cheese appetizer. I couldn’t stop eating it. It seemed like the food just kept coming (along with the drinks) for our dishing with the div’as report and the RWO team had an amazing time tasting, sipping and 78


talking. Plus, we got to even see an old friend, Kouzini’s authentic Greek oils which are used daily for cooking Kainos amazing dishes, plus decorate every table. I truly cannot wait to go back for more. They even have started a Club Kainos with local DJ’s to keep the party happening. It is an experience you won’t soon forget and Jeffrey Scott has paid attention to

every last detail to make sure each one of his customers not only feels like they are transported to Greece, but has a memorable experience each and every time they come in. Stay tuned for more to come from this fantastic restaurant including an RWO’s Diva’s Nite coming soon. OPA!











An all new American eatery located at the Water Street Music Hall, Jack’s on Water Street hosted a couple of the “diva’s” of Rochester Woman Online for an amazing evening that we are excited to dish all about! When you first walk in to Jack’s the ambiance is kind of a cool jazz club feel. Very relaxing, immediately puts you at ease, and a simple, yet stunning decor that makes you completely fall in love with the place.

their drinks including fresh mint and muddled cucumber. They also told me that they have certain liquor that you can’t find any place else including Uncle Nearest 1884 Whiskey and even a tequila in a steel reusable water bottle (which I got one to take home). So then came the delicious food! Seriously each was amazing, but my VERY favorite was the lollipop chicken wings special

Peter, the owner and creator of both Water Street Music Hall and now Jack’s was there to greet me and tell me all about his ideas and the history that surrounds this new, super cool bar and restaurant. PLUS, I got to meet some of the amazing staff that he brought here all the way from LasVegas! So Jack’s is named after Peter’s fur baby and honestly is the perfect addition to Water Street. Their unique take on American Cuisine and the incredible drink list were very impressive. We began with a specialty Mojito while we were waiting for the appetizers to come out. I have NEVER had one and boy was I missing out! Our amazing bartender or mixologist as we called him told me they use all fresh ingredients when making

from North Carolina with the homemade blue cheese and specialty sauce. They are out of this world and I would highly recommend! The homemade fries you just couldn’t stop eating, and then we had a dish that honestly when it came out looked like a meatball. It wasn’ was a tomato ball that truly was one of the best things I have ever tasted. Even their salad was presented with a twist. Tossed with salami, shrimp, homemade vinegrette, and

some many other goodies. Let’s not forget the temura veggies. Squash, carrots, green beans, all lightly battered and served with not one but two mouthwatering sauces; one creamy and one a sesame vinagrette. YUMMY! These are just a few items on their amazing and unique menu. Next time, I can’t wait to try even more, but of course I will still be ordering my favorite lollipop wings. I ended up staying for a few hours enjoying all of the great food and drinks, but even better was the talking with Peter and the staff at Jack’s about all of their hard work, their backgrounds, what they have coming, and more. It was an incredible evening and I really had so much fun. They are open daily from 4-close and you can come in and enjoy a cocktail, fine dining, great conversation and a relaxing atmosphere. I can’t wait to go again. Who wants to join me?

{ PLATTER CHATTER } “This October, and every October, we renew our commitment to our vision of a community free from violence, where healthy relationships thrive. We support survivors at every step of their journey to a safe and empowered life. ”

{ PLATTER CHATTER } “What, exactly, is abusive? Where do you draw the line? What marks the difference between an unhealthy relationship and a dangerous one? Which red flag or act of abuse is the moment you decide, “enough”?”

is happening to you. I care about you. This is not your fault. You have the right to be safe. I’m here for you.” If we are serious about ending DV, we all need to join together to ensure every survivor has access to the services and supports needed along their unique journey to safety and empowerment. We need to ensure that every person in our

community has the tools to recognize abuse for what it is, to respond in a safe and supportive way when someone discloses abuse, and to refer survivors to the right resources.

relationship, and they will need your non-judgmental support at every step. We all have a role to play in ensuring that our community is one where healthy relationships thrive.

Ask “What do you need to be safe right now? How can I support you?” And keep asking. It may take time for a survivor to find the resources to escape an abusive

More information and resources can be found online at





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Kyle Ruggeri founded Sober Dogs Recovery after his release from prison. He started the website to give voice to his experiences, so as to help others going through the process of recovery and sobriety by sharing his story. I connected with Kyle at Sandra Doorley’s press conference, and he graciously took the time to let me interview him, during which I inquired about his trials and what led up to his deciding to change his life. Kyle’s Background In middle school and high school, Kyle, along with a core group of friends, were involved in various sports (Kyle, football). As he stated, the thoughts that started substance use, “I had a wonderful family in Webster growing up—great parents—no alcoholism, no addiction, no trauma, nothing. But… there were these false expectations I put on myself all the time.” Part of those expectations he had for himself included keeping his grades up, playing well on the field, being respectful to adults, family, and friends, but also, the ails of adolescence. Kyle spoke of feeling awkward around girls and wanting to fit in with the popular crew like his older brother, his mind always racing “[be] the best, the best, the best.” Though his substance use began around this time, he noted his parents didn’t realize there was any problem until college. At parties, Kyle was always the first one to bring liquor and a bag of coke. Someone he worked with, who had been alienated by his group of friends, provided Kyle with coke; Kyle would often leave a party on Fridays, use, and would bring some back. However, his friends frequently inquired, “Why that much? You don’t need that

much.” Over time, Kyle’s tolerance built up against the effects of marijuana, and then marijuana combined with alcohol. On the other hand, as Kyle put it, “We all used excessively, and so it almost blinded my excess a little bit… ‘Okay, maybe I’m not that nuts for doing three grams of coke and a bottle of Captain tonight.’” Identity Loss: The Downward Spiral Once he began college, he initially achieved well academically, making it onto the Dean’s List. He would visit his brother, and they

would drink a lot, but he was still able to maintain his performance for classroom and field. But in his second year, after Kyle received his fifth concussion being knocked out in football, he began to turn toward opiate abuse. Already diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder and Major Depressive Disorder, he had good intentions—taking his medication as prescribed to recover and rejoin the team. At first, he went to a couple physical therapy sessions and was prescribed Percocet, which was unusual—concussions rarely receive painkiller prescriptions, but Kyle had severe pain in his neck from

the collision. He had used them before recreationally, but, “Now I actually had them.” Placed on injury reserve, Kyle was no longer required to show up for practice. “So my identity for the last twenty years was ‘football player’...” He lived in a house with five others, four of whom were on the team; once class finished at 2 p.m., he would be back home in pain instead of his usual place on the field. Having the Percocets on hand, he progressively began taking them irresponsibly, leading to his opiate addiction. RIPPLE EFFECT: THE VISE GRIP OF ADDICTION Kyle recounted the effect his addiction had on his family, specifically his parents. He knew his mom would start crying, and his dad would be in complete disarray, which was out of character for a person who was always prompt and organized. “The arguments would ensue from what I stole or what I did.” The only way Kyle knew to mitigate the pain he felt hurting others so deeply was doing more drugs, even though it would cause more pain. At one point, he broke into the safe in his father’s office, after which his father bought a shotgun safe only so that Kyle couldn’t break into that. “He [Kyle’s father] came into my room… ‘I have to put a deadbolt on my door in our house because of you breaking in—my son.’ He couldn’t comprehend why I was doing it… And that pain just destroyed me; I went right out and got as high as I could.” ROCK BOTTOM Four months after being released from prison, Kyle was sent to Monroe County Jail for the second time after committing ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ BEHIND THE SCENES } “I had a wonderful family in Webster growing up—great parents—no alcoholism, no addiction, no trauma, nothing. But… there were these false expectations I put on myself all the time.”

a violation. He was in utter disbelief that he had wound up back there. “It was a combination of walking back into Monroe County jail after saying I would never come back, the depression of being in there, and then I called my parents. And that phone call I had with them was the worst phone call I ever had in my life.” His mother told him that they were planning his death: “We never thought we’d have to figure out tree plots and burial plots, but it’s going to happen. You’re brother’s getting married— we put the wedding and everything off so you could be his best man—that’s out the window. We’re trying to figure out our lives with just him and his family because you will be dead soon.” Kyle also talked some about his parents’ experience while he was in prison. They didn’t want to talk about what was going on with other people, nor did they go out. His father had a minor heart attack while Kyle was in jail, which he attributed to himself, causally. Along with prison and jail, Kyle also spent time in solitary: a total of twelve months and twenty-five days, five different trips. “The longest trip was one hundred twenty-three days… there’s not been one other thing in my entire life that even comes close to the pain and misery of solitary… For me, with the exception of one fight, every time I went to solitary was because of drug use.” Once he left solitary, a place without sunlight or social contact, he was offered drugs. He accepted, which sent him right back. “First three to five days for me are ‘sleep twenty hours a day.’ Day five to eight, it’s like your body can’t sleep anymore—you go nuts. And then eight to fifteen is the mental breakdown… reality stops.” During one of his stays, someone had drugs on the block. Without any money, he was unable to afford any. As it happened, about six or seven other people on the block overdosed, “...and they shut the whole block down, and the state troopers came in. I don’t know 98


how many died.” THE TURNING POINT: CHOICE TO CHANGE During one of his stays, a fellow inmate asked Kyle what he was going to do when he got out. He replied, “I’m gonna be sober for my family, get a job…” The inmate stoutly told him he wouldn’t, to which Kyle was affronted. Over time though, he realized that if he continued what he was doing, he would get the same results—a lesson that began to sink in at Willard. “Willard was exactly what I needed at the time; it was structured—up at 5 a.m. it was humility—all these guards yelling, screaming, you have to do push-ups—it’s basically Army boot camp, but when the Army would do combat and arms training, Willard puts AA and rehab in. So it was the structure, working out, (which I enjoyed anyway), humility, and then all these seeds of rehab and AA and being clean… it was a great three months of completely sober thought. I was also able to look around, and I saw exactly what would happen if I did not stop and I did not die.” The reality of continuing the cycle of addiction was “three minutes of pleasure followed by five hours and fifty-seven minutes of absolute misery, desperation, and anxiety. And then you get more drugs and it’s three minutes of pleasure and the same cycle again. And even the three minutes towards the end—not even three minutes.” When his sentence was finished, Kyle had made the choice to pursue the path of sobriety. He decided to become a part of ROCovery Fitness, an organization with members who pursue sobriety and enjoy various kinds of fitness (which, Kyle loves working out). A big fan of twelve-step and AA, ROCovery kept interaction interesting since different outings could have different people, creating a sense of community for him, also encouraging him to continue

in his journey. However, Kyle still felt a hole—he enjoyed his work, but it didn’t bring him a sense of fulfillment or passion he desired. A dog-lover at heart, he noticed a sense of satisfaction when volunteering or working with animals. Along with this void, Kyle and his parents had difficulty interacting with friends they ran into in a public setting—to share or not to share, and if so, how much? Growing tired of silence, Kyle started his website, Sober Dogs Recovery at, where he talks about his narrative. Not only has it helped others struggling with sobriety, but it also helps Kyle in his own process. Through sharing, he feels empowered and passionate, the name reflecting two things dear to his heart: sobriety and dogs. In his own words, “For [the] future, my goal would be to somehow get paid a full salary to do this—speak, write, whatever it is, something to do with recovery.” COMING FULL CIRCLE Kyle closed with excellent advice: “One of my biggest fears: getting sober is the end of my life. One of my main missions with Sober Dogs is to let people know how much more fulfilling life is without the drugs and alcohol and how much more fun I could actually have. That’s a huge, huge goal, and that’s why I use my dogs and the animals, which brings me so much joy with a lot of that too. Because I always told myself, ‘I’ll get sober so I don’t hurt my friends and family anymore, but I’ll just be a miserable shell all day.’ I associated fun with drugs and alcohol my whole life—without it, that’s it. There’s nothing. And that couldn’t have been further from the truth. And when I look back at the majority of the times, I look at the fun memories and parties in college—the only thing that made many of them memorable and/or fun was somebody fell and broke the table or it’s always trouble. It was never like a wonderful evening with beers or wine



{ BEHIND THE SCENES } “It was a combination of walking back into Monroe County jail after saying I would never come back, the depression of being in there, and then I called my parents. And that phone call I had with them was the worst phone call I ever had in my life.”

or like a romantic evening with a girl. My idea of fun was warped, and I want people to know that’s not what sobriety is—it’s not miserable. It could be very fulfilling and fun, but it’s not automatic either. You have to work on yourself, and then work to help others, and then that fulfillment comes full circle.” And when asked about how to talk to someone going through addiction: Definitely don’t put them down or belittle them, especially about their addiction. Be supportive without enabling, and one thing I think is very important is planting the seeds of sobriety. The first two or three rehabs I went to didn’t get me sober, but there was little things I learned and listened to in there that I still know to this day. And those little seeds—you never know when they’re actually gonna pop up. People always say, ‘You went to that rehab—it didn’t work!’ It’s not that it didn’t work, but maybe the person wasn’t ready. There’s 100


a million circumstances, but I would learn little things each time that when it finally does kind of all come together, I can use stuff that I learned at this rehab, this AA meeting...Yeah, I never think it’s a bad idea to plant positive seeds, even though the person might have another ten years of using, you know? Who knows? Something could pop up and help them.”

something wrong, but sports helped me my whole life, and taking away that identity at that age would not have helped. And I think a lotta times now when someone gets in trouble they punish them by kicking them off this inclusive, good, positive program they’re involved in—no. You can punish them, but don’t take away something that’s benefitting their life.”

Looking back, Kyle notably mentioned that he believes his identity crash might have come sooner when he was sixteen, had he been kicked off the football team. He has a DWI, and the athletic director deemed the consequence be immediate removal. “...The coaches ended up coming in and talking to him, ‘He’s a very good player; you don’t want him off the team,’ so they made me go to AA meetings. If they would have kicked me off the team—yes it’s a punishment, but I think that would have started my addiction way earlier. Yes, someone needs to be punished if they did

Though we as a society have a ways to go for resolving the opioid crisis, having valuable perspective such as this helps to close the gap between those who struggle with addiction and those who have a loved one who struggles. Choosing sobriety is arduous, but with increasing awareness, supports, education, and outreach, hopefully the choice becomes less onerous. “To know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson







Beth will be speaking on understanding your business from a Spiritual perspective and how to apply these principles in creating abundance. Showing you the power and possibility you can love what you do everyday. 

Beth will be guiding you into a meditation aligning you to an intuitive and creative experience. Lynch will also take questions and share intuitive insights. Beth's own personal experiences opened her to understanding life, death and everything in between. Forniver two decades she has been inspired to guide others understand the power of their Spirit and how this influences conditions around them personally and professionally. For more information or to contact for private, group or corporate gatherings:




/bethlynch444 for meditation, podcasts & more.






Sherry Hale has been an innovator from the start. Her father, and his father before him, were both businessmen and entrepreneurs. Sherry found that she had that same, innate capability that would eventually drive her to excel and succeed in the business realm herself. From the onset of adolescence, she was motivated to learn how to use a computer, so she taught herself. She also felt a magnetic pull to the beauty industry, completing her cosmetology license after high school. These are the stepping stones that lead Sherry down the long and winding road that has led her to where she is today: the CEO and founder of The SHALE Group; a Master Artist in Custom Beaute; a distributor of her own patented PMU tool, Sherry Hale Define brushes, as well as her own organic skincare line Sherry Hale “Silk”; and finally, as a New York State educator in her Cosmetic Micropigmentation training institute, Custom Beaucademy. Sherry’s success has been due to a culmination of calculated decisions that started very early in her adult life and that she continues to make every day. Sherry started work at Dow Chemical Company as a computer training coordinator, with the additional responsibility of supporting a large team of engineers. She started a family and, after five years of dedicated service, she left Dow to raise them. During her time as a stay at home mom with a 1 and 3-year-old, she learned to master the computer, the internet, search engines and web design. With these new tools in her belt, she went on to start her first company, ViaTheWeb Designs, LLC. From there, in 1998, Sherry was able to realize her first invention – the Virtual Office which was the perfect marriage of her passion for computers and her love of the beauty industry. A very successful

venture called, allowed her to stay at home with her children while earning a substantial income. The tool quickly accelerated in the internet realm where major corporations began to copy and replicate her efforts. Her web-based, interactive software and website subscription

her aunt, grandfather, grandmother(s), and an uncle that continued to challenge her motivation and drive. She continued to work her home business on a much smaller scale while fighting deep depression and trying to figure out how to overcome these personal struggles. In 2008 an opportunity presented itself to work on a three-year global computer project at Pfizer called LIMS. Pfizer had purchased a large amount of small companies around the globe and they needed to upgrade all the legacy systems that were used to test samples. Sherry reported to the Program Manager as the Global Working Group Coordinator for the project lifecycle. After working with highly skilled professionals outside of the walls of her home, she quickly discovered that she wanted to complete her degree as she thrived in this intellectually stimulating environment. At that time in 2008, she started online courses and went on to complete her bachelor’s degree in Web Design and Multimedia with Magna Cum Laude honors graduating in 2010. Sherry did this while simultaneously working her full-time job and raising two teenagers.

service (Virtual Office) now earns millions in annual revenues for companies across the globe. In 1999, Sherry’s life was abruptly devastated by the death of her father at age 51 who she was very close with. Following that, over a few short years, were the deaths of

At the completion of the Pfizer project, Sherry was still feeling that pull to the beauty industry and had a strong urge to complete education in Cosmetic Micropigmentation. So she completed the courses necessary to start her next adventures, where she started her second company: Custom Beaute. After working in the beauty realm for a year, she was once again called on for another computer project, this time by Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Buffalo New York. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019




“A very successful venture called, allowed her to stay at home with her children while earning a substantial income.”

The Facets project at BCBS was a fast-moving target project dictated by government mandates put on insurance companies. Sherry was brought on as the Project Coordinator, reporting directly to the Program manager, as well as serving as assistant to the Project Manager. The project successfully concluded in less than a year’s time and was later awarded with the esteemed recognition as Project of the Year award by the Project Management Institute. She was then put on multiple projects, supporting a wide range of the business departments at BCBS, as well as the IT department. She saw first-hand that there was a strong need for a SharePoint system to be implemented and started her quest to find approval for this roll out. After the system was approved and a job position was created for the SharePoint Systems Analyst, Sherry spent the next 3 years rolling out what is now the legacy system at BCBS. During this time working at BCBS, her passion for the beauty industry was still omni-present, and the need for Cosmetic Micropigmentation in the area was there. Custom Beaute found its home in small space in the city of Tonawanda, where she would take clients in the evening and some weekends. As the need and customer base evolved, so did the business. In 2013, Sherry moved into her first 2400 square foot business as the first of many expansions, offering a wide range 112


of spa services. She stayed in that location for 3 years and learned the difficulties of owning a business with staff. Despite the challenges, the business continued to grow where she then relocated to Northwoods Medical Building in 2015.

Over the next 2 years, she continued to evolve the business by adding new services as well as she continued her training quest to perfect her skills. But she wasn’t done, she still had goals for additional companies to build as additions that would complement Custom Beaute. In 2018 and 2019, she proceed to form Custom Beautech and Custom Beaucademy, which now make

up the SHALE Group which combined with Custom Beaute, form over 4000 sq. feet in Northwood’s Medical Building. Sherry has always focused on helping people. She has worked with her team over the past several years to deliver an unprecedented, multi-faceted approach through the SHALE Group’s three factions—Custom Beaute, Custom Beaucademy, and Custom Beautech—to deliver to her clients, and the clients of those who partner with her, life-changing experiences. Together these divisions are dedicated to offering the best products, best technology, the best teachers, and the best possible environment for the magic to happen for her clients, while also setting standards for the beauty industry to follow. This has been Sherry Hale’s vision and every move she makes is meant to further enhance the positive outcomes that others achieve when they meet her. The most recent expansion was with Aesthetics Gynecology, now offers her clients even more services to help them on their transformational journeys. She is where she is today because of her commitment, her passion, and her drive. Continued growth is always in her personal line of sight, and it’s evidenced by her incredible journey from the farm country of Michigan to the beauty mecca of Western New York.







{ COVER STORY } “Sherry’s success has been due to a culmination of calculated decisions that started very early in her adult life, and that she continues to make every day.”





Custom Beaute’s growing brand provides a unique, all-encompassing mix of medi-spa services, products, and training for cosmetic enhancement. Sherry Hale, Founder and CEO of The SHALE Group, had a vision when developing Custom Beaute to help her clients feel and be their absolute best. “Let’s face it: Life is rough, and every decade brings more complications. Through our esthetics and wellness services, we help clients internalize their beauty, which is a very empowering thing. When you feel amazing, you can get through anything”, Hale said in an upcoming interview for Good Housekeeping, Woman’s Day, and Woman’s Health. The SHALE Group has recently expanded in two of their divisions, Custom Beaucademy and Custom Beaute, and we are very excited about sharing this news! Custom Beaucademy has continued to see exponential growth this past year, and we are now officially pending licensure with the New York State Department of Education. Beaucademy is now booking courses for December, January, and February; currently offering one class a month with the finest guest teachers the United States has to offer. Students benefit from a 2:1 ratio (two students to one teacher) per class, so as to optimize their learning experience by getting the attention that they deserve, and need, in order to thrive when they leave our classroom and start out on their own. There is, of course, room to 116


schedule two back to back classes a month to accommodate all of our interested students, who we welcome to go check out our website: custombeaucademy. com for more information on classes, and payment and financing options. The current course is a 6-day “All About Eyebrows” course, with more classes to be added very soon, including Lips, and Eyeliner! Custom Beaute, the services division of The SHALE Group, has seen growth and

diversification as well! With more than 30 years in the beauty industry, and 10 years in permanent cosmetics performing over 10,000 procedures; Sherry is also a licensed New York State educator and cosmetologist, with a bachelor’s degree in information technology and an evergrowing list of certifications. With her commitment to continued education and growth, she is always on the lookout for the latest and greatest in technology and services to offer her clients, so that she can

continue to help them on their individual journeys. Recent services that have been mentioned in previous articles are the Plasma Fibroblast treatment—which is a skin tightening solution—and Jet Fill, which a more natural, subtle-looking needless filler using hyaluronic acid, which your body produces naturally on its own. The newest expansion in our services division is incredible, as we have partnered with Aesthetics Gynecology, owned and operated by Dr. George Danakas and Dr. Armen Kirakosyan. Dr. Danakas is an obstetriciangynecologist in Amherst, New York and is affiliated with multiple hospitals in the area. He received his medical degree from Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara and has been in practice for more than 20 years. Dr. Kirakosyan is also an obstetriciangynecologist in Elma, New York and is affiliated with multiple hospitals in the area as well. He received his medical degree from Crimea State Medical University and has been in practice between 11-20 years. Both doctors are highly regarded in their field and have been eager to expand their business and grow together with the Custom Beaute team. Dr. Danakas and Dr. Kirakosyan partnered to create Aesthetics Gynecology several years ago, hoping that they could serve women needing cosmetic enhancements,







{{ CUSTOM BEAUTE } SHIFT+CONTROL “Through our esthetics and wellness services, we help clients internalize their beauty, which is a very empowering thing. When you feel amazing, you can get through anything.”

or reconstruction in the gynecological realm. Sherry, who also strives to make women look their best and to help them feel empowered, felt like the stars aligned with this prodigious team-up. Matching Sherry’s excitement for expansion, the doctors have recently moved Aesthetics Gynecology into Custom Beaute and are ready to start seeing their patients in this, their new location in the Northwoods Medical Building at 3950 East Robinson Road, Amherst. With this move, they brought with them an awe-inspiring amount of new services. Geared towards

helping women struggling with some of the most intimate and sensitive issues they could ever go through, these doctors have worked tirelessly to ensure that the women that come to them for help are heard, supported, and treated in such a manner that they are able to feel whole, complete, and restored. The services that they have brought to our office include: Vaginal Rejuvenation, Labiaplasty, ThermiVa, ThermiSmooth, Clitoral Hoodoplasty, Hymenoplasty, Urogynecological surgery consultations, the O-Shot, and CoolSculpting. We are

absolutely thrilled to be offering our ladies these new services so we can help be a one stop shop that is able to accommodate all of their personal needs. Spearheaded by Sherry, this unification is already off and running and thriving, so the Custom Beaute family is proud to introduce its newest members, Dr. D and Dr. K!



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Arthritis is the leading cause for disability in the United States and affects over fifty million Americans. In fact, about one in five people have arthritis. Cannabidiol (CBD) has been studied and tested as a more natural, holistic alternative for managing arthritis symptoms. One of these studies done in 2011 showed that CBD helps to reduce inflammatory pain. A more recent study done in 2017 concluded that CBD can be used as a safe and useful treatment for osteoarthritis joint pain. The Arthritis Foundation pushes for FDA regulation and the continued clinical studies of CBD for arthritis on their website. They acknowledge that people with arthritis are some of the top purchasers of Cannabidiol, and that it is both a safe and effective treatment for arthritis pain and inflammation. The way CBD helps manage pain and inflammation is by affecting receptors in your brain and your immune system. Everyone has an Endocannabinoid system filled with neurotransmitters involved in regulating cognitive and physiological processes. Cannabidiol (CBD) naturally boosts Endocannididol levels in your body which influences things such as appetite and pain sensation. In other words, CBD changes the way your body feels pain and inflammation by targeting receptors in your brain. CBD has also been linked to helping sleep conditions such as insomnia. Insomnia is a sleep disorder where people have a hard time falling asleep

and staying asleep throughout the night, causing them to have daytime drowsiness. Research suggests that around 1 in 3 people have insomnia. CBD has been shown in studies to improve REM sleep, decrease daytime grogginess, and even reduce nightmares. CBD interacts with receptors in the brain that control your bodyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sleep and

awake cycles. It is a non-addictive, holistic approach to treating sleep disorder such as insomnia. Most prescription medications for sleep disorders are ineffective and have harsh side effects and ingredients. Some people that have tried CBD for insomnia were able to reduce taking such medications, and some cut them out altogether. Cannabidiol has also been shown to mimic serotonin in your

body, which is known to help people wean off harsh and strong medications. People who have low serotonin levels are also linked to talking anti-anxiety medications. Anxiety is currently the most common mental ailment in the United States. While experiencing anxiety, the neurotransmitters in certain regions of your brain become hyperactive. CBD works by targeting those neurotransmitters much like it does for pain. Brain scans have shown changes in the blood flow in your brain during periods of anxiety while taking CBD. The fear of public speaking is a common trigger for anxiety. One study showed that people with fear of public speaking had both improved performance and less anxiety while actively taking CBD. Social Anxiety is the fear of being in social situations and affects about 15 million Americans, myself included. Essentially social anxiety is the fear everyone is constantly judging you or analyzing your every move. Many people who suffer from social anxiety are prescribed anti-anxiety medications by their doctor. Long term side effects of such medications can be increased blood pressure, sleep problems, headaches, sexual problems or erectile disfunction, etc. CBD offers relief to those who struggle with social anxiety, without those harsh side effects. So now that you have heard off some of the benefits of Cannabidiol and how it provides relief to people suffering from many different ailments, the questions arises to why some people are hesitant to use it. Many associate CBD with ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ YOUR CBD BEST OIL } “The way CBD helps manage pain and inflammation is by affecting receptors in your brain and your immune system. Everyone has an Endocannabinoid system filled with neurotransmitters involved in regulating cognitive and physiological processes.”

hemp plant, which is a cousin plant to marijuana. Unlike it’s cousin plant marijuana, CBD does not produce a psychosomatic “high” feeling. CBD is legal in most of the United States, but some states still have some restrictions for buying and selling CBD. There are many clinical studies that have shown the effectiveness of CBD for reducing the number of seizures, and even stopping them altogether for some people who suffer from seizure disorders. The FDA has approved a CBD medicine, Epidiolex, for seizures but has not approved CBD for anything else yet. That is because more research and clinical studies are needed The CBD market is booming, and since CBD is not FDA regulated it is 128


important to do your research on the CBD product you are purchasing. It is important to select a company that does not import their CBD from overseas to avoid false labeling, pesticides, and even heavy metals. Try and choose a company that is third-party lab tested for quality. This also ensures you are getting what is on the label. Lastly choose a company that uses organic, natural ingredients. A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t pronounce and ingredient or if you don’t know what it is, stay away. Burgess, L. (2018, August 2). Can CBD oil relieve arthritis pain? https://www. Cherney, K. (2019, August 13). Using

CBD for Anxiety: Does It Work? https:// Grinspoon, P. (2019, August 27). Cannabidiol (CBD) – what we know and what we don’t. [Web blog.] Moore, G. R. (2019, August 15). Stress & Anxiety? How CBD Oil Can Help. Villines, Z. (2018, July 27). Can CBD oil help anxiety? https://www.medicalnewstoday. com



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WHY LOVE IT IF IT DOESN’T LOVE YOU BACK? Or how to have a good relationship with food I hear it all the time in the office: “This program has completely changed my relationship with food! I don’t see food the same way anymore!” Changing your relationship with food is one of the most important aspects of following a healthy weight loss and weight management program.

also vital importance put on education as well. No one can change their ways without understanding the process. Which vegetables promote weight loss versus weight gain? What is a lean protein? Is fat really that good for you as proclaimed all over the Internet with the Ketogenic diets trend? At Ideal Health and Weight Loss, we follow the ©IdealProtein protocol which is a low-fat low carb program providing

The first step is to realize that you do have a relationship with food and to accept that your current relationship is not ideal (pun intended). Start visualizing “Food” as a person and admit that whatever you love in “Food” doesn’t necessarily love you back! Take a good look at how “Food” has been treating you. If the answer is: “badly”, then it is time to seek help from an expert in relationships…with “Food”. Go to a nutritionist, a dietician or a Nutrition or Wellness coach that can help you change that relationship. At Ideal Health and Weight Loss, we start by giving our clients very concise and easy directions to follow so they don’t have to think about “Food” all the time. Whenever someone wants to change the dynamic in their lives, they want to be able to take some clear steps. At our clinic, it translates into a list of what you can eat with clear quantities, including partial meal replacements to help curb those cravings for carbs (chocolate bars, chips, even mashed potato or risotto!) There is 136


one-on-one weekly coaching. This protocol aims to provide clients with tools to reach their ideal weight but most importantly, to sustain that weight loss through education and practice of a healthy lifestyle. It is of utter importance that clients understand that the weight loss phase is not the end goal but only the necessary beginning of a journey that will teach them how to take back the control of their

relationship with “Food” and to reconnect with their bodies. Of course, there is the basic nutritional education of what is a carbohydrate, a protein, and a fat. But it goes further than that. Which food makes you feel good? Which makes you feel strong or happy? Which makes you feel bloated, depressed, guilty? Wouldn’t you use the same criteria for other relationships in your life? Would you stay in a relationship that makes you miserable? Or strive to find one that makes you peaceful and content? I am always amazed by how fast my clients start reconnecting with their bodies as they are recognizing the food that makes them feel good about themselves, physically, mentally and emotionally. For many years, their bodies didn’t “talk” to them. Or maybe it did and they weren’t listening. Their bodies then found other ways to make themselves heard: they created communication tools called “diseases”. There are several types of those “languages”, several types of “diseases”: diabetes type 2, high blood pressure, inflammationrelated diseases (anything ending in -itis), high cholesterol, etc. And most of the time, when clients come to me and say: “I want to lose weight”, they just trying to reconnect with their bodies, to understand them, to love them and to be loved by them. And they do. They start their journey towards changing that deep, rooted-in-childhood, nurtured by life experiences, relationships with food. A few examples of our clients’ struggles and victories include a client with high blood pressure and thyroid issues who was able

{ { HEALTHY WOMAN } } SHIFT+CONTROL “The first step is to realize that you do have a relationship with food and to accept that your current relationship is not ideal (pun intended).”



{ HEALTHY WOMAN } “At Ideal Health and Weight Loss, we start by giving our clients very concise and easy directions to follow so they don’t have to think about “Food” all the time.”

stop taking medications after two weeks on the diet. Another client had had type 2 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis for years and was taking 11 daily meds. After almost dying of an infection, she decided to try our diet and in a few weeks, she was down to 1 daily medication. Another client was “pre-diabetic” and started the diet because his doctor told him to lose weight. A few months later, his doctor had to take his cholesterol twice because he couldn’t believe that it had dropped 70 points. That particular client lost 65 lbs. and now runs 5 K races. Because the ©IdealProtein protocol puts the client into what is called “nutritional ketosis” (when less than 50g of carbs are consumed daily) clients do not feel hungry and lose their cravings pretty quickly. It makes it easier for them to reach their ideal goals. Ketosis should never be a lifestyle or permanent. It is a tool used only to make weight loss easier to achieve. Once they have reached their goal weight, clients are 138


encouraged to eat good complex carbs and good plant-based fats daily and exercise. But as they go through the process of being in “nutritional ketosis”, they suddenly have time and space to “hear” their bodies again. The noise occupied with cravings and hunger is gone. There is no more filter and suddenly heads and bodies make one again! It is so much easier to work with your body (and rely on it) than to fight it constantly. The relationship with our body gets better and our relationship with food gets easier. Our body tells us which food makes us feel happy and which makes us feel sad. We understand which food to love based on the simple principle of reciprocity: “I love this food because it loves me back!” Once you follow this principle for life, you won’t have to fight or worry anymore about your relationship with food. Just listen. Notes: 1-Ideal Health and Weight Loss is a

©IdealProtein independent authorized clinic. It provides its clients with one-on-one weekly coaching following the ©IdealProtein protocol. www.idealhealthandweightlossROC. com or (585) 444-9991. 2-No diet is a vaccine against gaining weight back. Education and change of lifestyle are paramount for weight maintenance. Ideal Health and Weight Loss provides a one-year minimum maintenance service to its clients. 3-These comments are solely based on observations of, and experience with, Ideal Health and Weight Loss clients and are in no way intended to replace treatment or cure diseases. Please consult your doctor before starting any diet or exercise plan. 4-Eating disorders -and especially bingeeating disorder-cannot be treated by diet only. Please seek professional’s help at National Eating Disorders Foundation (https://www.







Brenda is a channel for spirit with the purpose of sharing intuitive messages and healing energy to assist with balancing the mind, body and soul connection. Brenda is a certified Reiki Master and IET Master Practitioner. She is a certified Life-Coach, Assertiveness Coach, Master Trainer, Akashic Record Reader, and Intuitive Medium. Brenda’s compassionate, peaceful, and empowering style fosters a comfortable, open and safe setting where healing and enlightenment are fostered. Brenda Gilasso is the founder & owner of Hands From Above a dynamic business designed to meet the needs of individuals, groups, not-for-profits, and businesses alike. Brenda was called to merge her educational and experiential life with her innate intuitive skills and desire to bring light, love, and healing into the world. Brenda is launching a program designed for healers and intuitives called Message Academy. Message Academy is a program focusing on

teaching healers and intuitives how to harness the wisdom and fire within to grow and build their sense of self and their business. Brenda draws from her soul’s wisdom, experiences, and higher-self to guide, empower

 Powerful awareness & growth  Discover why your life is unfolding as it is  Let go of what no longer works  Explore positive options for today, tomorrow & your future. Spiritual counseling Life coaching Bi-weekly Development Groups “what is intuition?”, “What is energy and how do I recognize it within my body?”. Group events can be intuitive reading events, training events or other events designed just for your group. Brenda has worked with local not-forprofits and businesses to assist their clients and staff. Not-for-profit and business training would be meeting with your organization to discuss what the company wants and how we can achieve it together!

and assist healers and intuitives in building their practices. A few of the services offered at Hands From Above by Brenda are Energy Healing – a special mix of Reiki, Integrated Energy Therapy & Metatronic Healing, Intuitive Readings Akashic Record Readings  Support for personal

To schedule an appointment or to speak with Brenda go to www. or to register for the next Message Academy event go to Hands From Above is located at in the Crossbridge Office Park at 2000 Winton Road South Building 3 Suite 104 in Rochester, NY 14618.





HELLO MY NAME IS SANDY ARENA AND I AM A SURVIVOR OF CHILDHOOD SEXUAL ABUSE The Worth More Nation name came to me in the summer of 2017 as I was running on a treadmill at my local gym one day. Fellow visionaries may know inspiration can come in the strangest of places – even on a treadmill in the middle of a dungy gym. Nonetheless since that day, we have seen this name and the work behind it accomplish much in the lives of hundreds of people who have been impacted by traumatic childhoods. The biggest surprise to me, however, is how the Worth More Nation name and what we do has impacted my own journey of healing after childhood sexual abuse.

no matter how our stories have unfolded. Can someone please say amen and put a crown on our heads? This month for Rochester Woman Online, I wanted to share more of my “why” behind Worth More Nation and the work I am so passionate about. The time felt right, as did the medium - a beautifully-appointed online magazine devoted to sharing and exploring women and the issues that may affect us all, including yes, childhood sexual abuse.

Ugh. I wrote it. Childhood sexual abuse. It’s never easy to say or wrap my head around it happening to me. Not now. Not then. Not ever. And fifty some years later walking out my own past can still present a mental struggle as I try to understand my own worth, despite the many successes and blessings I have experienced for which I am so grateful, and to which I give God all the glory. If you are not careful to overcome, a wise friend once said, you will become. I share this in great vulnerability because perhaps I am not alone in my admission to personal weakness, and maybe, if we are honest, we all need to be reminded and encouraged that we are “Worth More”, no matter what we have been through; and 150


Ugh. I wrote it again, but perhaps writing about this horror isn’t so bad after all, or at least that is what the experts say. The American Psychological Association reports in an article adapted from the Encyclopedia of Psychology that one way survivors of childhood sexual abuse can recover is by opening up. “Writing about difficult, even traumatic, experiences appears to be good for health on several levels – raising immunity and other health measures and improving life functioning.” Well then, touché to me. Other statistics I found paint a picture somewhat bleak. One in seven women will

suffer from this kind of abuse and the affects (without healing) can be dismal: Higher rates of substance abuse, greater incidence of suicide, lower academic performance, elevated high school dropout rates, increased mental health and emotional issues, depression, physical aggression, higher teen pregnancy, and on and on and on and on…. I had to stop reading – lest I cry, and lest I forget all I could have become, and all that I have overcome because of my faith, reliance and trust in Jesus. That is where my faith and healing come from, believing and seeing the manifestation of God’s power being made perfect in my weaknesses. And for that I give Him all the praise. This is who I am. This is what I believe. And I can’t write about my “why” and Worth More Nation without expressing that truth. I have had many years behind me living my life in a way that was hard. But, I have labored endlessly since then to recover and rewrite my story and my mindsets, and now live a life that is far from perfect, but one that I love. I choose to celebrate the latter, and hope my story of coming to this place helps someone else achieve the life of their dreams; the life they thought was never within their reach. I have found that childhood abuse has a way of whispering the lie that you don’t matter and that you are less than those around you. Today, I do all I can to help dispel that myth and help others know and find their worth. But first, back to the day I came upon the Worth More Nation name on that treadmill and how this moment in time has meant so much to me. I used to run, but now that I am over 50, I have found that I shuffle. On that day, I was shuffling. And praying.




{ WORTH MORE NATION } “The Worth More Nation name came to me in the summer of 2017 as I was running on a treadmill at my local gym one day.”

so much to me. I used to run, but now that I am over 50, I have found that I shuffle. On that day, I was shuffling. And praying. And praying. And shuffling. I felt as if I had more to do to help children who had suffered abuse - something my family and I had already been doing for many years, having welcomed at least a dozen or more hurting kids of all ages and circumstances into our home temporarily, and also for the long term. One time even after a dance outreach trip to Nashville (I used to own and direct a nonprofit, faith based ballet school), for example, we brought a 19-yearold boy who had been living homeless on the streets back to live with us. This was all wonderful, and maybe even a little reckless at the time, because perhaps we weren’t best equipped to do what our hearts were telling us to do. But nonetheless, it was a way of life for so many years, and like the miles I was shuffling on that treadmill that day, I had no plans of stopping. “Let’s start with a name God,” I prayed. “Show me some words that could be our organizational name,” I continued my silent

plea while expectantly scanning the room for any old word or word combination that could perhaps divinely come to light to communicate the yearnings of my heart. I was looking at people’s t-shirts around me reading what they said and trying to “see” as I shuffled what I wanted to see. I noticed three words stick out on three, different exercisers, and just like that, in an instant, I saw the words bobbing up and down on the t-shirts of these people working out in front of me - WORTH. MORE. NATION. Of course - Worth More Nation, I thought in excitement, frantically trying to thumb type the words on my iPhone as I shuffled, so I wouldn’t forget. It seemed perfect because the name said it all, and it seemingly embodied what I was feeling on the inside - a never ending call and desire to protect and provide for children who suffered from trauma and abuse – kids like the young girl I once was and the child who I desperately never wanted to be.

When I was a little girl, and for as long as I can remember until I acquired the language to tell my family in a way they could understand what I was saying, my grandfather sexually molested me. And this is my “why” for my work of today, and the work of my yesterdays, and the “why” for my quest for an organizational name that day. He did it in terrible, unthinkable and sick ways including forcing me to look at pornography as a very young child, and also touching me anyway and anywhere when he would get me alone. And get me alone, he did. He was cunning and intentional. He groomed me with toys, gifts, and special outings with the purpose of isolation and extreme attention that I -- as the youngest child in a large, dysfunctional, chaotic, and substance abuse filled home – found hard to receive. During those days, I would get lost in the middle of it all.




{ WORTH { SHIFT+CONTROL MORE NATION } } “After he died, there was talk of what to do with their property. And I remember at the time thinking it should be turned into a home and safe haven to restore childhood sexual abuse survivors.”

“Child grooming is befriending and establishing an emotional connection with a child, and sometimes the family to lower the child’s inhibitions with the objective of sexual abuse,” says Wikipedia. And apparently, there are six noted stages of grooming which I chose not to read at the time of this writing because the thought of that level of manipulation makes me feel truly sick to my stomach. My grandfather saw me and doted on me like no one else did, except it wasn’t because he loved and cherished me as his granddaughter, but because he had an agenda. He violated me and took advantage of me in ways that no child or human should ever experience. I fell victim to his repeated schemes and trickeries that spanned years of my childhood as an attention-starved girl who was submissive, compliant, loving, and lost at home when things were going awry. My mother fell ill when I was born and couldn’t handle her life or her youngest children at the time. I grew up hearing how devastated she was when she found out she was pregnant with me – the youngest of five children. If abortion had been legal back then in 1965 maybe I would have been aborted. I almost died while she was in childbirth, and so did she. After the trauma of being born where she had a ruptured placenta and I was drowning in her uterus, I was sent away to live with relatives the first year of my life as a foster baby, including yes, I was sent to live with him. My abuser. My grandfather. The monster of my childhood. I shudder and sob and sometimes even vomit in deliverance to know how I lived out the first year of my life as a baby, and there are times including while writing this that I want to rip my skin off to rid myself of skin memories. There are some touches that never leave and are now scars that make up the fabric of my physical being.

When I first became a mother on June 4, 1992 when my beautiful daughter Alexis was born, I learned the power of motherhood and protection. We call it Mama Bear. Watch out for Mama Bear. I would battle for her and all my children like no other, and in realizing this fierce love and protection, I had to wonder why no one battled for me. Where were my protectors? Why didn’t they stop him? Why weren’t they watching me? It was more salt in these large, gaping wounds I already had. I spent years in disbelief – like did this really happen -- and more importantly, why? I had questions for which there were no answers, pain for which there were no pills during my early recovery, and emptiness that stemmed from a never ending quest to belong in a place where I felt like I would never fit in, never find peace and never feel safe. I went for counseling and my first counselor told me to take my power back and confront the perpetrator who should have been put in jail, and also to confront those around me who knew about the abuse. I was a young mother, age 27 at the time, and so in love with my daughter Alexis. I chose to leave my job as a lifestyle newspaper editor when she was first born and take up freelance writing because I could not think of anything else that I wanted to do in my life other than loving her, caring for her and protecting her. My love for her was so deep. I feared threats on her wellbeing, and trusted few, including those at day care. It was never an option in my mind because I cherished every moment I had with her, and couldn’t bear the thought of dropping her off each day, even for the career I had worked so hard to achieve. A few months into my counseling, I finally made those confrontation calls as directed by my therapist. I called everyone – except

him - which I was forbidden to do by my mother because, she yelled at me, if I did I would kill her mother – another lie I believed and took on as my own, as if my grandmother’s response to her husband’s crimes was my responsibility. My biggest offense at this time with those who knew about the abuse was how they used to make jokes about it and I let them know that I wasn’t okay with it anymore. It was as if making light of a terrible situation would make it go away. I grew up with stuff like this around the dinner table after it came out what was happening and the abuse finally stopped (I was around 12 years old when it stopped): “Remember that time out at Pop Pop’s when we did such and such.” And I would say, “No, I don’t remember that.” And then they would crack one liners like, “Oh yeah,” - yuck, yuck, yuck - “That is because you were in the shed with Pop Pop.” The shed. I could write a book about that place that was magically filled with antique tools and iron trinkets piled on his wooden workbench. There were oodles of interesting items and curiosities crammed in the shed to which a gullible child being groomed would be drawn. One day he made me a lead pencil carved out of a tree branch into which he drilled a hole and dropped a piece of lead. There was always fun to be had in their country cottage settled on a large piece of property tucked deep in the Pennsylvania forest on top of a hill in a suburb outside Philadelphia. There were grass covered hills we rolled down, icy creeks with moss covered rocks we inched our way through, fire furnaces with burning trash we watched smoke up from the distance, and a freezing cold swimming pool filled with soggy leaves and floating twigs where we lazed away on inflated tire tubes. There were picnics with fire crackers, afternoons playing Tiddly Winks, fat sticky ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ WORTH MORE NATION } “Forgiveness is a choice to make and a commandment to follow to live and love others, and to live and love well.”

hands searching for lollipops in the lollipop jars, and antique teddy bears we were not permitted to touch sitting on antique rocking chairs throughout the house. These are just some of the memories of mine that should have been the wonderment of childhood, but for me, they were always intertwined with nightmare memories of his isolation tactics, disgusting touches with his shaky hands and heavy breathing which still can be too much for me to carry, if I go there.

fighting back tears, and in shock – disgusted at myself for obediently following along with this charade once again. But then something beautiful happened that happens when personal worth flickers. Strength and dignity came upon me, and I realized I didn’t have to do this anymore.

Equally as devastating, but along a different stream of pain were the responses after confrontation attempts were made during this time period which left me far from feeling validated and definitely not yet empowered. Without going into full detail of this time in my life and all that transpired in my late 20s, I will share some the questions that haunted my mind: Why did my mother make a point of asking me if I had called him for his birthday or did I send him a birthday card? Why did she force me to continue to go to his home for holidays after I was old enough to finally have the language to tell in a way people understood me? Moreover, why did my uncle call me a liar? Why didn’t they tell him otherwise and defend me? Why? Why? Why? Soon after all of this, he died. They asked me to write his eulogy. And in an out of body experience as the perpetual good girl who never said no, predictably, I heard myself say yes. I wrote the last piece of positive prose about him under the guidance and direction of my mother. It was read at his funeral, after which my siblings and extended family stood before the crowd and somberly and proudly spoke of his greatness. I sat quietly, 158


I was a mother with a family of my own, a lovely child and a husband, who at the time, seemed to care. We had been through a lot with the counseling and my grief, and it was just all too much. Life was hard, but there seemed to be hope in this strength arising. I realized in that moment that I didn’t have to be there and that I could regain my power and leave. I was no longer

a victim. What a concept? Feeling self-empowered for probably the first time ever in this circumstance, I stood up in the middle of the funeral crowd and inched my way through the aisle not caring about “who” or “what” and what they might think. By the time we made it outside, I was shaking, my heart was pounding, and I crying. I was angry but relieved to be out of that space and in the late afternoon air. The parking lot attendants told us that we couldn’t leave actually until the funeral was over because the cars were all lined up for the procession. It would be impossible to retrieve the car, they said. My daughter’s father screamed at them and told them to figure it out, and that we had to go. At that, they got into the cars and started reorganizing the parking lot configurations like a real life game of “Parking Lot”. After standing there waiting and crying in the parking lot, our car was finally opened up and we were free to go. I cried the entire way home for all that had happened, and all that I knew was ahead for me to become the woman I knew God created me to be. After he died, there was talk of what to do with their property. And I remember at the time thinking it should be turned into a home and safe haven to restore childhood sexual abuse survivors. And while that never happened, I do realize now that what I have done in my own home as a family who provides safe haven for children who have been abused is an off shoot of this dream, and that Worth More Nation is a greater extension even of that. From time to time, I jot down my life vision. One entry says: My home would be beautiful. A safe haven for abused children. I would

If you are going to live and love – you will be hurt. It happens to all of us and maybe one could argue that some injustices are worse than other. The Bible says that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. We are imperfect humans in an imperfect world and my faith requires me to forgive. For me, this has been a huge part of my healing. Forgiveness is a choice to make and a commandment to follow to live and love others, and to live and love well. I have lived my life with love and the true love of Jesus Christ, and I have learned there is no better way to live and love than with Him. I clear out the darkness by forgiving – and forward giving my hurts to Jesus – in order to let His light in. The great Martin Luther King said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness. Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that” even the kind of hate that can be born out of childhood sexual abuse.

Today I say my grandfather and all he did to me does NOT belong in my heart. He doesn’t get to be there anymore and if I choose a path of unforgiveness, he is there to stay. Forgiveness drives him away. What he did to me, is not bigger than what Jesus did for me. I will not take my painful yesterdays with me and give the evil that was bestowed upon me a prime place in my heart. My heart was made for beauty, light, purity and goodness. My grandfather does not belong there and I forward give all of that junk to Jesus. This is my faith. This is what I believe and if you do not know Jesus, then maybe you could give Him a try. It’s not a religion, but a relationship and one that has turned my life to hope, beauty and all that is good. Reach out to me if you want to know more (, and if you don’t that’s okay, too. I’m still here for you to talk, share, unload, vent, encourage, whatever. It’s a lot and I realize my story could trigger others, although I truly hope it inspires. Reading other survivor stories has helped me to keep going and never let

go of the dream. I am proud to write that I am a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. Sandy Arena is the founder and director of Worth More Nation that empowers people impacted by foster care to know their worth through comfort, giving, pageantry and fashion initiatives. She is mom to five and one son in law, and wife to Sam. She likes coffee, shuffling, Jesus and practicing the art of photography, not necessarily in that order. She writes to help, heal and find hope. She spends most her days taking care of her home, her three dogs and her very active children who are involved in sports, dance, pageantry and modeling. For more information, visit

“The great Martin Luther King said, “Darkness ca cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that” ev sexua

annot drive out darkness. Only light can do that. Hate ven the kind of hate that can be born out of childhood al abuse. â&#x20AC;?

@casefacemarie FB: Casey Marie

Model. Model Coach. Creative Director. Coordinator. Stylist.


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Tammy: Tell our readers about Sharma?

and every day.

Sharma: I am a God-fearing woman whose mission in life is to encourage and motivate others in any way that I can. Ever since I was young, I’ve been involved in helping my community through various organizations. Furthermore, I am an Actress, Filmmaker and Multimedia Journalist from Toronto, Canada of Jamaican heritage. I take these roles seriously as I believe they allow me to educate and empower people through the art of Storytelling. I currently host a segment on YES TV, Canada’s most watched family values entertainment station and I always end my segment by telling the audience to Love, Live, and Give…This is my motto in life. There is a whole world out there so take a moment to get out of your bubble and walk in someone else’s shoes.

Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey…I hope to meet them one day…I will meet them one day, speaking it into existence! They both prove that when the odds are against them, they continue to soar to higher levels and never give up. Tammy: What social issues do you think is



Having a background in Film & Television I continue to support the MeToo Movement and the need not only for women to speak up about sexual harassment and assault but also for men in the Industry to speak up when they witness their female counterparts being mistreated. Furthermore, I think we as women should continue to speak up about the necessity of equal pay in the workplace, in all industries. Tammy: What are some obstacles you have overcome to inspire others?

Tammy: Who are some women role models in your life and why? Sharma : Ooooh…My role models to begin with are the women closest to me in my life. My mother Norma first and foremost. My mom exemplifies strength to me and what it means to sacrifice for her children no matter what. I lost my dad a few years ago to an illness, so my younger sister and I witnessed her really take on the role of both parents. My mother is amazing and not to mention she has an impeccable sense of style! I also admire my aunts and this trickles down to my female cousins. I feel so blessed to come from a family where the women support one another. My sister Sabrina is my biggest supporter and I continue to learn so much from her! I definitely cannot go without mentioning my Grandmother Megan MacDonald and my late Grandmother Alice - both taught me the importance of following God each

discussing the importance of tackling early school leaving among young girls; in order to increase the enrolment of retention rates of these girls in schools. I believe investing in the development of women is vital to the advancement of society.

vital for women to speak up about today? Sharma :The fact that there are still millions of girls worldwide without an education is an issue that I care deeply about. I have the privilege of being involved with an association called Women of Impact Organization. Part of what this organization does is go into communities across the globe

Sharma : As an Actress, you have to be prepared for a lot of rejection which can affect you physically, emotionally and mentally. I’ve learned that I can only do my best in an audition but I cannot control the outcome or who Casting Directors ultimately choose for the role. Moreover, what I have done to overcome this obstacle is create my own projects despite those in the industry trying to tell me it’s too difficult. Fortunately, thanks to trusting my intuition, I am now confident in developing and acting in my own productions. Most importantly, I give opportunities to minority youth to work on set and in acting roles as they may not have ever gotten the chance. Out of one of these projects my short film was birthed and was an Official Selection at the Women’s Director International Film Festival! Another obstacle I have overcome is staying true to myself and my beliefs, especially as




â&#x20AC;&#x153;The fact that there are still millions of girls worldwide without an education is an issue that I care deeply about. I have the privilege of being involved with an association called Women of Impact Organization. Part of what this organization does is go into communities across the globe discussing the importance of tackling early school leaving among young girls; in order to increase the enrolment of retention rates of these girls in schools. I believe investing in the development of women is vital to the advancement of society.â&#x20AC;?




{ { VISIONARY {SHIFT+CONTROL COVER STORY MINDS} } } “I am a God-fearing woman whose mission in life is to encourage and motivate others in any way that I can.”

a person of faith. It is a constant battle but I know that I am on the right path when I have people reach out to me wanting a fresh perspective on a project they are working on and still genuinely want to hear what I have to say. Tammy: What are some highlights of your life & career so far? Sharma: • Being named one of the Top 150 Black Canadians by the Black Canadian Network. This was in honor of the 150th anniversary of Canada (Canada 150). • Winner of a Black Canadian Award in the category of Actor/Filmmaker/ Community Role Model • Having the first short film that I ever wrote and directed be an Official Selection at the Women’s Director International Film Festival. It was entitled No Way Out and was centered around youth in at-risk community. • Becoming Host of Urban Report, a segment on the show Let’s Talk with Woodroe Thompson on YES TV. • Having main acting roles on shows on CTV,NBC and National Geographic/ Discovery Channel • Hosting the inaugural Women’s Leadership Conference for the Women of Impact Organization Ta m m y : W h a t d o e s w o m e n empowerment mean to you? Sharma: To me, women empowerment means surrounding myself with positive women that are doing their thing and following their own path in life while

uplifting each other at the same time. It means understanding that we need to know who we are first and have our own sense of identity in order to be the best partner that we can in our relationships. Moreover, an example that sticks out for me is whenever my beautiful grandmother Megan sends me off with Jamaican newspapers when I visit her, to keep me informed on Jamaican news and enrich my journey as a Journalist. This is women empowerment, supporting one another on the journey. Tammy: What is some advice you would give women who may not know which roads to take in their life or want to do anything in your fields? Sharma: Definitely try to find a good Life Coach. He or she will help guide you in the right direction while helping you realize your gifts and passions. Don’t be afraid to try new things – sign up for different courses, go to various networking events, meet new people, that’s when you’ll learn other things that you are good at and enjoy doing and who knows where that could lead! Adding on to this, don’t think you know it all, because we don’t and that’s okay. Be your authentic self and always be prepared to learn from others. Be very careful about burning bridges as you’ll never know when you’ll need that bridge to get to the other side on your journey. Also, you never know who’s watching so always try to do your best. For instance, I have gotten television hosting opportunities due to being seen delivering a speech at a totally unrelated event! No job is too small so whatever you do put in your 100%. When I go into an audition for an

acting role, even though I may not be the best person for that particular part, because I give it my all I sometimes get called back for an even better role! If the parts are just not coming your way, don’t get discouraged instead use that time to educate and prepare yourself so that you are ready for when role of a lifetime comes! And in an industry where not a lot of lead roles are written for black women and minorities, write your own script! If you are of an Entrepreneurial mindset like myself, it is extremely important to find that balance of working to achieve your goals without compromising your health. I have experienced burnout at a point in my life and all it does is set you back. Learn to do things in moderation, you’ll make clearer decisions that way; and do not be busy for the sake of being busy but be productive. This is way easier said than done but the key is to recognize and catch yourself before getting back to that state of burnout. Yoga is a great way to center yourself. Lastly, it is so easy to want to compare ourselves to one other, I am often guilty of this but for me I remember that my God has a predestined path for me so I often pray and ask for guidance. Don’t get hung up on missed opportunities because I truly believe that if something is for you it will come back to you no matter what. Also, take note that the more that you support others, the more that blessings will come your way. Tammy: Anything you would like to tell our readers about? Sharma:Absolutely! Catch my segment Urban Report every week on Let’s Talk with Woodroe Thompson. The show ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019




airs Sunday nights 11pm on YES TV. It’s a show that informs, entertains and uplifts the community. Also check out the show’s website for local listings and to watch episodes online.

com as we are in the crowdfunding stage and would appreciate any support! There are ways you can physically be in the film or even get a character named after you! The website gives info on how to get involved.

-I am Assistant Director on a Feature Film entitled Mary. It is a Dark Comedy that I promise will keep you on the edge of your seats! Please check out www.marythefilm.

-Women of Impact Organization continues to do great things, please follow the Facebook Page: Women of Impact Organization to keep connected to the latest campaigns.


- CHECK ME OUT ON THE FOLLOWING PLATFORMS: Website: Blog: Instagram/ Facebook / YouTube : @ sharmamacdonald






SHARON F. OWENS Sharon Owens has worked for more than 30 years in the fields of housing, community development, human services and government. In her current position of Deputy Mayor Owens oversees city programs and services that address quality of life in our community, including Neighborhood and Business Development and Parks, Recreation, and Youth Programs, as well as the Police and Fire Departments. Owens also serves as Chief of Staff to the Mayor.

the nonprofit sector. She served as Deputy Director of housing for Home HeadQuarters, Inc. and Jubilee Homes of Syracuse. In both positions she was responsible for program development, grant writing, and supervision of staff. She developed relationships with many families throughout Syracuse and was able to assist them in strengthening their community through affordable housing programs. Owens also worked at People’s Equal Action and Community Effort, Inc. (PEACE) as the Early Head Start Family

Owens also has extensive experience in

CNYWO: What inspired you to take public office? Deputy Mayor Owens: Public office and public service are synonymous to me. My journey as a public servant spans over 30 years. I’ve worked in several neighborhoods in just about every quadrant of the city of Syracuse with families, youth and seniors. In 2 0 1 0 , Ma yo r Stephanie Miner approached me with an opportunity to work in the Department of Neighborhood and Business Development as Deputy Commissioner.

Prior to this appointment, Owens served as the third CEO of Syracuse Model Neighborhood Facility, Inc., where she secured expanded services that infused human service provision with community revitalization initiatives to further serve an increasingly needing community. She previously worked for the City of Syracuse as Deputy Commissioner of Neighborhood and Business Development from 2010 to 2013 during the Miner Administration. In this role, Owens administered the city’s Community Development Block Grant funding to foster the revitalization of neighborhoods and the creation of job opportunities through housing, community development, and economic development efforts. She also managed Section 3 and Minority/ Women-Owned Business participation in funded projects.

The role she is most proud of is wife of 27 years to Shaun Owens and mother to Simone and Isaac.

and Community Coordinator and the Youth Services Component Director. Her involvement reaches to the boardroom as well. She currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Greater Syracuse HOPE Initiative, the Consensus Commission on Local Government Modernization, and the I-81 Community Stakeholder Committee, and the Blueprint 15 board as president. In 2015 Owens received “The Kathy” Award from the Gifford Foundation, which recognized her commitment to establishing sound community-impacting advocacy for community residents and their families. She is a graduate of Syracuse University.

In that role I was responsible for the allocation of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding received annually from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development. One of the main attractions to the position was that it provided the opportunity to evoke change in communities by working with agencies and community residents seeking to address housing, neighborhood revitalization efforts, services for youth and seniors, and more. I had been working within the neighborhoods for so long; helping people set goals for themselves and their families, particularly single mothers. I observed that as they were achieving great personal accomplishments they weren’t able to change their neighborhoods. I came on board to work ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019





{ CNY { {SHIFT+CONTROL INSPIRING COVER STORY WOMAN }} } “Surround yourself with people who will empower, encourage and support. Your team will help you identify your gifts and travel along your path.”

for city government because I saw it as a way in which I could affect change in a positive way to improve living environments. Working in city government, to me, has always been about providing services to our community, so it was a continuation of the work I had been doing for decades. Jesse Dowdell retired as Executive Director of Syracuse Model Neighborhood Facility, Inc. (Southwest Community Center) after 25 years in 2013. I had worked at the center before running a teen program. His retirement and the offer to become his successor felt like coming home. I was able to take what I had learned in city government to help revive the center and the programs it was providing to people within in the neighborhood. When Mayor Walsh won the election in 2017, he approached me to be a part of his team after sharing his vision for Syracuse. Through our talks, he concluded that he knew the job he wanted me to do and it turned out he wanted me to be Deputy may Mayor. In this capacity, I oversee Police, Fire, Neighborhood and Business Development, Diversity and Inclusion, and act as the Chief of Staff.

(third) and now into what is considered the fourth commonly referred to as the “Internet of Things,” interconnectivity is key. An example is our investment in the purchase and conversion of our street lights to LED which will result in significant annual savings. The nodes that will be affixed to the streetlights are an example of how, as a smart city, we will use technology to make informed decisions understanding everything from traffic patterns to the conditions of streets.

CNYWO: What change have you seen in the city of Syracuse since your term began?

The police Use of Force policy was recently updated to be more reflective of 21st century policing and we’ve engaged the community in a number of police-community meetings to help build community relations. There have been at least six forums where people in neighborhoods throughout the City have had a direct conversation around public safety with those who provide it.

Deputy Mayor Owens: Through Syracuse Surge which is our strategy for inclusive growth in the new economy, we’ve become the example of what other cities look to. I must stress that it is our inclusive strategy. We’ve gone through the stages of Syracuse’s development; established along the Erie Canal and thriving in the salt industry (1st industrial revolution); to the many jobs created in manufacturing (2nd Industrial revolution). What was once sustaining our communities has changed. Moving from the first and second industrial revolutions, to the computer industry

People will ultimately be able to feel the impact of the new technology in a way that is relevant to them. From determining where bike lanes should go to deciding which roads should be reconstructed, we are focusing on progress that will benefit people who live, work and play in the city. Other examples include: the STEAM school, which will be the first regional school of its kind in New York State; the Police Chief search in which the community and police officers were heavily involved; and the building permit process which has been to become an efficient and more interactive for everyone.

Quality of life and specifically the effects of lead continue to be a priority. The collaboration with Onondaga County and the Central New York Community Foundation to eradicate lead is a major initiative. Children and families have the right to live in an environment that is free from lead and other environmental toxins.

We also just entered into an agreement with Microsoft to have Syracuse be one of their handful of smart city technology hubs in the entire country - there’s a lot that we’ve been able to accomplish. CNYWO: What other changes you wish to see for the city in the near future? Deputy Mayor Owens: I want to see our poverty rates significantly decrease. If all people are not prospering from the innovations that are happening in this city, we have missed the mark. I want to see children grow up in housing that is safe, clean, affordable and free from toxins. I want to see young people graduate from high school at much higher rates and have the opportunity to attend college if that is their desire. I want our residents to be able to find viable and living wage employment in the City. I want the relationship between our community and city government to continue to grow stronger and be more productive. CNYWO: What issues seem to be the most needed to be addressed at this time to help the citizens of Syracuse? Deputy Mayor Owens: Poverty. People have to be able to feed their families and live safe, healthy and affordable lives. That starts with education and being able to receive viable job training skills that lead to sustainable employment. CNYWO: Why is it important for the community to be involved with the wellbeing of our city? Deputy Mayor Owens: It’s our city. It’s our home. We have to use our voices to help ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


It is important to me that the people who may not know the right cell phone number or e-mail address have their voices heard. It is important that there is equity in the way we are providing services to the community, proactively reaching out to hear from all city residents and stakeholders. CNYWO: What are some highlights of your career so far? Deputy Mayor Owens: Helping many who have set goals for themselves achieve those same goals and go on to see varying levels of success. From my time at Peace, Inc., I worked with parents and over time I would see them grow throughout my career. Whether it was their children graduating from high school or them purchasing a house, witnessing a positive impact in the lives of people is what it’s all about. CNYWO: How do you balance family and career? Deputy Mayor Owens: I’m still working on that. I have a great support system. I 180


thank God every day for my husband and children because this job is not just a job, it is a family experience. I’m learning each day how to maintain that balance. We love movies, we like to bowl - I am very protective of my Sundays. Faith is paramount in my life and Sunday’s help me recharge. CNYWO: What do you hope your legacy is once you leave the government arena? Deputy Mayor Owens: When I retire, I probably won’t really retire but I hope I’m remembered as someone who cared about the community. I want to be able to lay my head down and know that I affected someone’s life in a positive way. I will work hard to continually do all I can for this city because I love this place. CNYWO: What advice would you have for women who want to take public office? Deputy Mayor Owens: Whether you are in

government or not, the question for me is are you serving the greater good of the public? My advice would be to be true to yourself, be true to where your passions lie. Be a student, study, learn and engage. There are so many women in this community who are mentors. Grab us. We are always willing to have conversations, provide advice and assistance. CNYWO: What are some words of wisdom you would like to leave our Central NY Woman Online Magazine readers that can uplift them to be a part of making change for the betterment of our city? Deputy Mayor Owens: Never underestimate the power of who you are. The change that you are seeking to create lies within you. If you haven’t tapped into it yet, you will. Surround yourself with people who will empower, encourage and support. Your team will help you identify your gifts and travel along your path.





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Nina Purhenn also known as Nina P, primarily for performing and mostly due to the mispronunciation of my last name. I thought shortening my last name to the one letter made it way easier to remember and it stuck! I’m 36 years young, Raleigh born, Syracuse raised. I’m an Entrepreneur, Certified Group Fitness and Zumba Instructor, Spoken Word Poetry Artist, Licensed Practical Nurse, Model, Actress, Mother, and most importantly; I’m an Ambassador for GOD!

many reps, it’s more about our mentality and mindset. Our mind is the strongest tool we possess, you can do anything for a minute if you think you can first ! Graciously, the owners of Southside Fitness believed in my vision for this new class format and allowed me to introduce it to their current gym members every Tuesday night.

Whole heartedly I feel, if it wasn’t for faith and the relationship I have with the Lord; everything before this sentence would be non-existent! I’m blessed to wear many professional hats. For the past 3 years, I’ve worked full time as an admission and community outreach director for Brookdale Senior Living and I teach my fitness classes 3 times a week. Currently, I teach Zumba every Monday night at Southside Fitness and Saturday mornings at Revision Fitness. I have to say one of my career highlights is my newly branded Goal60 class! Goal60 is for all fitness levels with the mission of pushing our boundaries and breaking barriers, a total body toning class focused on 60 seconds of success. Basically, each exercise is only 1 minute long and follows somewhat of a circuit style. Goal60 is meant to be challenging but each person goes at their own pace because it’s not about how fast or how

Unfortunately I was young when I had her and the relationship with her father was less than healthy. Raising her as a single parent naturally caused many obstacles, not just financially but mentally and emotionally as well, but it forced me to make a choice. I wanted her to know better, to be better and I was all she had. I needed to change my mindset. I know Everyone comes from some type of brokenness, its not a perfect world but so often we learn to suppress our feelings, our misguided path becomes the norm, our hurt and unhealed childhoods allows us to passively or maybe unconsciously repeat the same cycles. However, I think we all hold some type of innate capacity or intuition. We know, we can feel in our spirit when something isn’t right. My advice for someone who may find their selves in similar situations or just struggles in general; we need to learn how to listen and act on that inner sense. I believe that’s where we find our worth.

Regardless of the role or position I embody on any given day, I aspire to inspire. I am passionate about helping people and being a positive role model, especially to my fourteen year old daughter, Amaree. Certainly, my daughter is one of my biggest inspirations.

Fast forward a few good years of soul searching, building a closer relationship with God and learning how to renew my mind, my GoalLine was birthed. The GoalLine mission is all about ‘pushing positivity with purpose and passion thru fashion’. Often you can spot me sporting one of my Goal Digger hats or tees. Many other artist, entrepreneurs, family, friends in and out of the Cuse can be caught rocking some GoalLine gear as well. Goal Digger, self defined as; one ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019




“Regardless of the role or position I embody on any given day, I aspire to inspire.”

one who utilizes ambition and persistence toward a particular achievement and wont stop until the desired outcome is attained.

so humbled that my story and poetry resonates with people the way it does. It’s like a surreal feeling and ironically hard to put into words.

Beyond the goal oriented apparel, the line is interconnected with my spoken word poetry and performances. I was told my spoken word performances are raw and energetic and fill the listeners with motivational wisdom and positivity. Recently I had the opportunity to perform at the annual Fearless Queens brunch in Syracuse and received a standing ovation. It actually brought me to tears. I feel

I actually think that’s what woman empowerment is all about. We have so many different variations of women from all over the world. We can all have different backgrounds and history , different colors, shapes, sizes, different professions and passions, special gifts and talents and what I might not have, she will, and what she might need the other one has. We can all come together and



share our stories, strengths and struggles without fear of judgment. We can be honest and transparent with each other because we all want to win and see each other win as well. We can’t make it in life alone, I don’t even think were supposed to try. We are all connected for a reason and we all have a purpose and empowered women, empower more women ! To contact Nina you can by email










Meet Crystal Snyder owner of Salon Crystallia. She has been in the beauty industry since 2004 after starting her career as a receptionist and assistant at Vibe Salon & Spa which was then located in Henrietta NY.

a curve ball and she decided it was finally time to take the plunge and making her childhood dreams come true. Crystal opened Salon Crystallia on Monroe Ave in Brighton NY on May 5, 2019!

After Crystal graduated, she was promoted to the floor providing skin, hair and nail services for clients. Ever since she can remember Crystal wanted to be a hairdresser. She would cut her friends hair in high school, she would do all her little sisters friends hair for prom, and basically you name it, she would do it.

If you ask Crystal what her goal was when opening a salon she would say “I wanted to create an environment that everyone felt welcome. A salon

O v e r t h e years, Crystal experimented in the field. Focusing on cutting only, Crystal became a barber working at a couple local establishments. After a couple years she decided to cut hair from home in Irondequoit NY, Cuts By Crystal she called it. Then, after relocated to Webster NY where she opened Salon Crystallia, that is when she decided to further her education and ended up finding her real care! Crystal operated in Webster for just over a year when life threw her

that was aesthetically pleasing yet homie.” “I wanted it to be clear that we are highly trained and provide high quality services, without anyone feeling intimidated to walk through the door.” In the end, her main goal was for everyone to feel beautiful and special from the inside out before walking

out the doo. Making sure everyone was looking forward to the next time they would come back. Salon Crystallia is located in the heart of Brighton NY. Providing skin, hair and lash services and hoping to add massage and body treatments by January. They have an amazing team that we had the pleasure of meeting including Lee Pumputis, their Master Stylist. He has been in the business 31 years, spending his last twentyfive at Scott Miller Salon. Crystal says “ I scored the jackpot with Lee. Not only i s h e b e yo n d talented, he is an amazing person and I am so lucky to have him as a co-worker and friend. Salon Crystallia wouldn’t be the same without him.” Taylor Corsetti is their “Lash Queen” and she is a “little breath of fresh air” as Crystal says. Talented beyond her years. Owner Crystal Snyder now specializes in anti- aging skincare. What sets Salon Crystallia apart! ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019



you ask? Well a few things. Not only do they offer the incredible BB Glow facial (which is amazing and being featured in this month’s edition as well in our dishing with the Diva’s report) but, Crystal brought the BB Glow to Rochester!

Also, we don’t want to forget, Salon Crystallia has two furry mascots, Baby Capone Crystals Rottie who has worked by her side since day one and Boris, Lee’s fur baby who is a perfect little frenchie. They both make cameos at the salon.

A one of a kind facial. Stay tuned for more info on this amazing service or check out Salon Crystallis social media, you won’t be sorry!

Salon Crystallia welcomes all fur babies with well trained owners too!


Please don’t hesitate to contact Crystal

to check out this amazing Salon and especially for her signature BB Glow Facial! 2340 Monroe Avenue (4.17 mi) Rochester, New York 14618 (585) 750-2090











What is a BB Glow Facial you ask, well it is where it “Tattoos” Semi-Permanent BB Cream Into Your Skin. ... To put it in simplest terms, the BB Glow Facial involves microneedling a pigmented vitamin serum into your skin to give it a sort of “lit-from-within” glow and right now this amazing treatment is only found here in Rochester at Salon Crystallis with the fabulous Crystal Ann.

device to tattoo BB Cream into the skin as a form of semi-permanent makeup to “hide blemishes and allow one to wake up looking radiant”. Who doesnt want to just wake up ready to go? I personally have permanent eyeliner and brows as well, so this is just one more step in making my

Of course you all know that I am always trying new and fabulous things with my clients and what woman doesn’t love to have not only a relaxing facial, but to also be infused with BB cream that after 3 treatments within 2 weeks leaves you with semi-permanent foundation coverage that lasts more then eight months! Some of hte benefits of the BB Glow is that it evens out skin tone, helps to minimize the appearance of hyperpigmentation and redness, and lessens the appearance of pore sizes. It was an amazing experience from start to finish...even though for part of it you do look like Jason from Halloween. But beauty is worth it, right? BB Glow entails using a Microneedling

BB Glow treatments can also help reduce freckles and lighten the skin. It also helps with discoloration of the skin caused by acne and age spots as well as helping to even out fine lines. It also has hyaluronic acid to plump the skin even more and give a radiant glow as well As vitamin C to treat hyperpigmentation and freckles. BB Glow Infusion gives not only coverage but also treats the skin from inside. Plus it not only covers up your facial skin flaws, it will also hydrate your skin, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, reduce the appearance of under-eye dark circles, and reduce blackheads and clogged pores

life easier in the morning. I mean who doesn’t want to wake up and look amazing without even having to do anything? The treatment takes approximately and hour and is not painful at all. It was actually rather relaxing to just lay there and enjoy the pampering.

Visit Crystal at Salon Crystallia and receive the HUGE special promotion for the BB Facial when you mention RWO! 2340 Monroe Ave Rochester, New York 14618 (585) 750-2090 SPECIAL PROMOTION: $50 OFF single session or $125 OFF package of 3 Package of 3 so ONLY $100 single session or $275 package of 3 (obtained by 1 person )









SPECIAL BB GLOW FACIAL PROMOTION: $50 OFF Single Session or $125 OFF Package of 3 ONLY $100 Single Session or $275 Package of 3 2340 MONROE AVE ROCHESTER, NEW YORK 14618 I (585) 750-2090

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Renee Soucy the label launched in September of 2018 in Rochester, New York. Owner and designer, Renee soucy, wanted to create a clothing line women would want to wear and would make them excited to get dressed each day. Renee soucy the label is a women’s brand with on trend styles, and contemporary, edgy items.

best. Fashion had always been a passion of hers since middle school, when she first decided she wanted to be a fashion designer, but the idea never truly took hold until she got that job. Renee would carry her sketchbook around with her everywhere she went, because she never wanted to miss an opportunity to jot down

Before Renee Soucy the label, Renee created Voulez, her first clothing business. Voulez, meaning “want” in French, was a little different than Renee soucy the label. All the clothing from voulez was silkscreened sweatshirts and tops made in Palmyra, New York. Voulez gave Renee the knowledge and stepping stones she needed to see and figure out what she truly wanted her brand to look like. She realized, even though she liked creating tops using the silkscreen and direct to garment printing (DTG) methods, she wanted to create customized items for her clients. Renee had been sketching and designing for years and she wanted to make her designs come to life, as well as create sayings for clothing. Renee used her experience from working in a printing shop to incorporate silkscreened items with those she designed. Renee’s idea was to create comfy, and casual clothing to offset the sexier, and extravagant looks she created. Renee began designing clothing back in high school when she worked at TJ Maxx. She loved working with clothing and loved helping give customers advice on what goes together, and what clothing looks

an idea. Renee got most of her inspiration working in the dressing room, seeing all the clothing women would try on, and she would envision her version of the piece. She liked to picture what she would do differently to the item, to make it so she would wear it. By this, she learned how to sketch different shapes, she learned

about patterns and all the wearable fabrics that make up the most popular clothing. While working, Renee would sketch and imagine her future business. Most of the designs she would draw were bridal gowns, bridesmaid’s dresses and prom dresses. Her idea for her business was to start with everyday clothing for women and eventually work her way up to bridal, and couture gowns. But for now, Renee has big plans for her clothing line. Not only is she able to be featured in Rochester area magazines, she is collaborating with some of Rochester’s biggest models to help bring her visions to life. In addition, Renee has taken it upon herself to take more advanced sewing classes to expand her knowledge of the art, in order to create more difficult pieces and work with more difficult fabric. She is also interested in pursuing a degree in fashion design, alongside her business administration degree, to learn more about the current trends. Currently, Renee is launching her 2019 winter line; the “Wonderland” Collection. This collection incorporates both casual and sophisticated styles in one look. Renee introduces four new pieces to her line for this winter season that everyone will love to give for gifts. Renee soucy the label has two new silkscreened tops; “Dreaming of a Wine Christmas” Tee in White, and “Okay, But First Presents” Henley Tee in Storm. Her remaining two pieces include the “Vannah Two Piece Sweater Suit” in Cranberry and “Queenie High Waist Sparkle Pants” in Coal. Renee’s “Wonderland” Collection launches on her website December 11. ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ FASHION FORWARD } “Renee had been sketching and designing for years and she wanted to make her designs come to life, as well as create sayings for clothing.”










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I took my daughter to the mall the other night to try to find something for her to wear to a sports banquet she had to attend. In the middle of the popular teenage store that displayed crop tops, micro-mini dresses and tube skirts that could challenge any pair of underwear I tried to steer her towards a black turtleneck dress. It was form-fitting but I saw it as a compromise. While that may be a go-to outfit choice for me tempers quickly flared, anxiety escalated and my facial expression clearly said more than anything my mouth could say. She blurted out, “you’re old.”

Where had she gone? I was faced with my own Linda Blair spewing pea soup in my face and for the first time in my life, I didn’t have a comeback.

l admit it; mid-drift shirts and jeans with too many holes don’t look good on young girls, I loathe the cell phone and all the secrecy it creates, she eats so healthy sometimes I want to scream “eat a sandwich”, I question why anyone under the age of 18 needs foundation and so many hair products and I’m completely lost when it comes to her music beyond her John Mayer playlist.

I was the grownup. I was the mother. When she was little, she made me feel young. At 40 years old I got back on the floor and saw the world from her perspective.



I smile now thinking about what we called fashion. The boys didn’t have a chance at ever seeing skin during a routine school day. We wore Lacoste polo shirts, under an oxford button down, topped with a Fair Isle sweater; three layers all neatly fastened together with a wide whale belt. It makes me hot just thinking about it. I stood in the store with my daughter, who had now turned away from me, wondering was she right? Had our age difference finally caught up to me?

She knew she hurt me, a single blow. This was no upper-cut jab. A punch right to me ego. I wanted to strike back and respond, “Well, those overly tight pants you just tried on should come with an arrow pointing right at your vagina.” I did not.

Saturday nights were spent in Blockbuster picking out movies we had both seen a hundred times. We would dance to the closing theme song. One of our favorites was “Night at the Museum” when Earth, Wind & Fire would play “September” and I would teach her my disco moves.

door. I was angry with my body because it was never where I wanted it to be and it was all my her fault.

Standing there I started to remember being my daughter’s age and what a nightmare it was trying on cloths. Dressing room, after dressing room, I would throw my mom’s discarded options for me over the top of

The only technology our phones had were push buttons and long cords. Privacy amounted to stretching the cord out as far as it could go, hopefully into the bathroom where no one could hear who I was talking to. If this phone had a camera on it, it would eventually have seen me wander into the living room where I would lay upside down on the couch, feet in the air with the cord wrapped around me while I rudely continue talking without regard for anyone else in the room.

“I smile now thinking about what we called fashion. The boys didn’t have a chance at ever seeing skin during a routine school day. We wore Lacoste polo shirts, under an oxford button down, topped with a Fair Isle sweater; three layers all neatly fastened together with a wide whale belt. It makes me hot just thinking about it.”




{ HER EDGE } } { SHIFT+CONTROL “I was faced with my own Linda Blair spewing pea soup in my face and for the first time in my life, I didn’t have a comeback.”

Nestles Quik, and Sugar Smacks were for breakfast, lunch was always packed with a bag of Fritos, and a HoHo. Only on fish sticks day was I allowed to buy lunch. Dinner was usually some sort of meat and potatoes and a glass of milk. There was no gluten free pizza, almond butter, or avocado toast on the menu at our house. ‘Breck’ and “Gee Your Hair Smells Terrific’ were the staple shampoos and in the summer would my mom allowed me to use lemon juice to lighten my hair naturally. Love’s Baby Soft perfume and Lip Smackers were extras that came in my stocking and had

to last until Easter. James Charles was not around to teach me a holiday makeup tutorial. I only had the drug store where I would sneak a little blue or green eye shadow, mascara and some blush for my locker to put on after I got to school. I can’t begin to don’t understand what mumble rappers are saying and I hate the profanity in so many of today’s lyrics. But did my mom know that to me, Boston wasn’t just the name of a city?

My daughter and I walked to the car that night in silence. We left the mall with heavy hearts and without any bags. Just when I thought she was about to say “Ok boomer take me home”, she said “I’m sorry.” Maybe we aren’t so far apart after all. I am old, old enough, to know it’s her turn.









3 STRATEGIES TO TAKE ACTION TOWARDS YOUR DREAMS NOW & HOW I CREATED THE ACTION PROGRAM As a model success coach and formerly a health coach one thing I notice similar among my clients is they have a dream or goal they are trying to reach. Their enthusiasm fuels my enthusiasm to help them reach their goals! But something I notice is many of us keep ruminating on dreams but don’t take the consistent action needed to reach them. Sometimes this is because of overwhelm, not knowing the right steps, or over analyzing the situation leaving us not taking any steps. Below are 3 strategies I’ve found help myself and my clients take the action needed to reach their goals. 1.) Progress over Perfection – otherwise known as Do It Badly – Procrastination has often kept me from taking action in my own life. Then I learned research shows procrastination is rooted in fear. Now, I try to live by Marie Forleo’s teachings to focus on progress over perfection and her mantra “everything is figueroutable.” If I waited until I felt like everything I was doing was perfect I’d probably never get much done. I challenge you to think of something that is a priority but you’ve been pushing off getting it done. Ask yourself why you aren’t taking action on it? Is it that you are unsure of the first step? Perhaps research needs to be done first? Maybe there is no time? What can you say no to or instead delegate, automate or outsource to your , kids, a Virtual Assistant, an expert so you

can make time for this priority to get done? 2.) Work Backwards and See Your End Goal – Dreaming is a muscle. A muscle most of us were never trained in strengthening. To get what you want you have to know what it is that your desired outcome is specifically. See it and feel it with all of your senses. Visualize the goal coming true in

your mind’s eye daily and feel the feelings of it coming true so that you can step into your future self and your desired outcome. Knowing your exact dream will help you come up with specific goals. These goals can then be broken into baby steps and these steps broken into actions and to-do’s.

Write small action steps into your calendar so they get done. Then set reminder alerts on your phone so you don’t forget. 3.) Avoid Analysis Paralysis – Better to do it badly than not take any action at all. We can easily read extensively on our topic, dream about it, ruminate, deliberate, procrastinate, watch another podcast or training video on the topic but still not take action. Taking action can feel big and scary which is why tiny baby steps can be the solution. Consistent small steps. You don’t need to see the whole staircase to reach your goal but simply the first small step. Feeling paralysis? Ask yourself what is a tiny action step I can take this week towards this goal? Then ask yourself when will I do this step? Put a reminder in your phone and schedule it your calendar. Small consistent action can lead to big accomplishments over time! Working as a coach, I see those succeed who are persistent, work hard, focus on gratitude, love learning new skills and take consistent action towards their goals. In 2014, I went back to school to become a certified health coach. I planned to finish my master’s degree in Health Coaching. But everyday people asked me questions related to modeling or getting started modeling or acting. I had spent almost a decade of my life working full time as a model and talent plus I’ve also worked in the offices of two talent agencies. One a a major market fashion modeling agency in NYC and the other a successful small market commercial talent agency. This experience on both sides of the camera made my experience unique. When first getting started in the industry I’d always wished and hoped for someone to help me get my start; an industry veteran willing to take time away from the bright lights ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ SPECIAL FEATURE } “Working as a coach, I see those succeed who are persistent, work hard, focus on gratitude, love learning new skills and take consistent action towards their goals.”

to give me insider strategies and insights. And while I cannot go back in time to be that help for myself. A light went off in my brain and I realized I could be this help for others. My heart especially goes out to small town girls who have big dreams and are highly self-motivated as well as those in their 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and beyond who are ready for a new adventure. After a few years of helping my one-on-one coaching clients succeed I realized it is time and energy intensive and I can only help a handful of people working individually. My new dream was to create an online program. 244


Accessible to rural and small town people across the nation and another goal was for it to be affordable. After 2 years of development I’m so thrilled that ACTION launched successfully this fall! In this program accessible from a smartphone or computer I teach a monthly training, have a monthly expert and have a live group coaching call. The program gives you a focus and accountability each month to reach your model and talent goals and dreams. Best of all if you miss any of the live components you can watch

later in your membership portal. Many busy people even do it completely as a self study although research shows people have the most success in online programs when they show up live at least part of the time. Special for RWO readers get 50% off your 1st month of the ACTION program by using code: HALFOFF1STMONTH Learn more about ACTION and sign up here:



Erin Crowley Ellis, a Rochester “Boomeranger” is the Managing Director of Advanced Technology (AT) Venture Center in Rochester, NY (www. which partners with universities, researchers, manufacturing companies and startups to grow the economy of Upstate NY by promoting and creating advanced tech ventures. ATVentureCenter focuses on projects that increase GDP and economic redevelopment in a region the Center calls “STEM Valley™” which covers the area from Binghamton up Syracuse and over to Buffalo/Niagara Falls, where billions of federal R&D dollars are invested each and every year. The result of this massive governmental investment is that our research labs, centers and universities have created an estimated 8,000 patents that are available for commercialization. https://rochesterbeacon. com/2019/02/27/theway-to-regional-economicsuccess/ In an effort to increase the number of advanced tech ventures created in our STEM Valley region, ATVentureCenter has also created Chinese venture connections with Jiangsu and Shangdong providences. (www.uschinaventurecenter. com) These Chinese venture creation connections can be used to provide 246


needed early-stage capital for STEM Valley tech firms seeking access to the China marketplace. Erin grew up in Pittsford and her love of cars in high school drew her into the world of engineering. She signed up for auto shops class, interned for a vehicle drift racing company and joined a formula SAE race team. After

graduating from RIT with a BS in Mechanical Engineering with Honors, Erin spent nearly a decade living away from Rochester working at Toyota and consulting with over 300 regional and international manufacturing companies. Traveling the nation from large cities to rural towns, she soon saw the tremendous impact the manufacturing sector has on

the economy and job growth in nearly every other region in the US. It was a rare occurrence in these visits to see a new manufacturing facility in the North but she did see examples of major growth in Alabama, Tennessee and Texas where new manufacturing companies came into struggling towns bringing vast numbers of new jobs. With this influx of manufacturing jobs, Erin saw firsthand how major firms created newly flourishing communities. Erin says, “It’s about investing in companies that have the ability to generate the “butterfly effect”, which is the theory that a small or medium sized advanced manufacturing company has the ability to grow ten to twenty times its original size within just a few short years. This kind of rapid growth has significant effects across the business spectrum including the development of local supply chains and the community at large. For example, when Intel moved 15,000 jobs to Portland within roughly three years an additional 80,000 jobs were created in their region. ATVentureCenter’s goal is to help serve as a catalyst to rebuild the Upstate NY economy by tapping into STEM Valley’s incredible patented technology. It is high time to make an economic impact by bringing that vast amount

{ NEW IN THE ROC } “Erin Crowley Ellis, a Rochester “Boomeranger” is the Managing Director of Advanced Technology (AT)Venture Center in Rochester, NY ( which partners with universities, researchers, manufacturing companies and startups to grow the economy of Upstate NY by promoting and creating advanced tech ventures.”




“It’s about investing in companies that have the ability to generate the “butterfly effect”, which i grow ten to twenty times its origina

if governmentally financed R&D out of the labs and universities and to commercialize these treasures of science into the global marketplace and with it - create tremendous regional job opportunities. In fall of 2018 ATVenterCenter was approached by one of Rochester’s local research facilities to commercialize an advanced bio tech which has the potential to play a major role in accurate diagnosis of leukemia and other cancers allowing oncologist the ability to provide patients with individualized medicine. ATVentureCenter has done more than just talk about creating growth and new advanced technology jobs, ATVC recently launched its first bio tech company in an effort to work towards this economic development goal. ( In April 2019, after six months of vetting the technology, ATVentureCenter purchased a worldwide exclusive license for breakthrough IP invented by two prominent university researchers. ATVC formed a new biotech subsidiary called Sanatela AT Medical Solutions, Inc.(“Sanatela”) to commercialize this invention. Sanatela will be manufacturing a bio engineered tissue made exclusively from decellularized Wharton’s Jelly that is called the “Sanatela Matrix”. Currently Wharton’s Jelly, along with the umbilical cord and placenta, are thrown out as medical waste after a live birth. 248


The Sanatela Matrix will first be used as a research tool to test individualized types of leukemia stem cells and other cancer stem cells so the patient’s oncologist can develop precision cancer diagnosis and therapy with the goal of treating the patient with one single dose that is targeted expressly to kill the cancer stem cells that are the root of all cancers.

family feel the effects of multiple rounds of chemo and radiation. Knowing that a local technology exists within Sanatela right now that could potentially provide patients with a one-time dose and a potential cure - was something Erin and the ATVentureCenter team felt was a technology that needed to be brought to market so that patients could benefit.

Like many of the readers today, Erin has already seen far too many friends and


is the theory that a small or medium sized advanced manufacturing company has the ability to al size within just a few short years.”

In the US 61,000 patients are diagnosed with leukemia a year, Sanatela’s mission is to produce enough volume that any new diagnoses could be tested using Sanatelindividualized medicine. Currently the Sanatela Matrix is designed to mimic an environment of bone marrow which can be used to treat blood cancers. Phase two is to develop a second matrix design that mimics the environment of a tumor so that the matrix can then be used to identify Breast cancer stem cells and other forms of tumors.

Erin is the Chairman and Chief Innovation Officer and co-founder of Sanatela. She is currently working with the local OB-GYN community to educate patients and moms about the benefits of banking umbilical cords and placenta for their own storage, as well as learning about the benefits of donating the medical waste from live births for continue research. What Erin finds so remarkable about the miracle of birth is that the source of the stem cells that build our body – Wharton’s

jelly – is the source of the material that may also provide the world with the cure to cancer and also serve to heal wounds, burns, grow bone and even regenerate hair growth. If you are currently expecting please reach out to our Sanatela Team and we can provide you with information on how to avoid wasting valuable tissue from each birth – if you don’t save it for the future – please donate for research. Erin is currently working with the Sanatela start up team to open a local manufacturing facility for the production of the Sanatela Matrix. The company is projects that it will grow from its current 10 employees to as many as 100 employees in less than 18 months. Erin will be personally bringing her manufacturing and quality skills to the team and is already playing a vital role in setting up the manufacturing lab and training bio technicians. Erin is incredibly excited about the job opportunities that Sanatela will create for Rochester. In December Sanatela Medical will be launching a crowdfunding campaign with the goal of raising a million dollars which will be used to supports the launch of the company’s manufacturing facility and costs of clinical trials. new-drug-screening-tool-for-cancer-researchcomes-to-market



“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” - Alan W. Watts. So, here is my dance. I am a wife, a mom to four children, an attorney, small business owner and I serve the Lord daily. I also volunteer my time on a parent board and through a monthly Open Meal that I started around 8 years ago. My husband and I are small business owners whose mission is to serve others.

Are you afraid of change? Many are. Change can be difficult. John C. Maxwell stated that “You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” I feel that you can make a

Steve is a High School Sports Consultant. He offers multiple programs to help student athletes get to college. Presently, I am a business owner. My passion is to help people b e c o m e m o re confident, build relationships, empower and inspire others to start their own business and support them. Every day, I live intentionally in faith and show up for my family, friends, team, clients, prospects and my business. Having a passion for what you do in life is exciting. Change is exciting too.



change in your life if you set a plan, do the hard work consistently and believe in yourself. At times, I was afraid of change; however, I discovered that personal growth did not occur for me when I was comfortable and complacent. I may have been afraid of change at times, but it has always

turned out to be a beautiful experience in the end. Change #1 - After I got married, Steve and I moved to a different state. I had just turned 24 years old and was afraid to move away, leaving my parents behind, being a new wife, and star ting law school. Although I was scared, I did not let my fear hold me back. If I did, I would never have accomplished great things later. The Dalai Lama stated that “True change comes from within; leave the outside as it is.” When I reflect during that time of my life, I realized that the change happened inside of me and I gained personal growth confidence, selfworth, belief in myself and the want to help others. I enjoyed the entire experience as uncomfortable as it was. I loved attending law school, passing two bar exams, practicing in 2 states and publishing articles. The change was good.

{ WOMAN WHO INSPIRES } “Leaders become great not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others.” – John C. Maxwell.





“Today, I feel that I can do anything through Christ with hard work and perseverance consistently. I feel strong, worthy, empowered, confident, and inspired to help others make changes in their lives too.”






{ HER EDGE } } { SHIFT+CONTROL “John C. Maxwell stated, “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.” It has been an awesome journey so far and I am excited to see what the next year will bring.”

Change #2 - My husband and I decided to have a family. I knew before I held my son, that I sincerely wanted to be a stay at home mother. I had waited a long time to have children and it was not something that was going to be created overnight. Therefore, I put my career on hold to stay at home. So many people thought I was crazy to walk away from my career, and therefore, I started to doubt my decision. Practicing law was my comfort zone. Although I was nervous about the change from lawyer to mommy, I knew that it would stretch me again as a woman. We are where we are supposed to be, and the Lord knows our path. The Dalai Lama stated, “Happiness is not ready-made. It comes from your own actions.” I was deeply happy to be home with my children. The change was good. Change #3 - After being a stay at home mother for over a decade and all my children attended school full time, I wanted another change. I was alone every day, doing the same monotonous tasks around the house. It was a safe and comfortable time for me, but I wanted more out of life. I wanted to get back to helping and empowering others. The thought of jumping back into the workforce again, after being home for almost 15 years, was scary. I knew I just could not get any job because I had four children with four different schedules to manage. It had to be flexible. I wanted something that

I could do from home especially if one of my children were home sick or had the day off. The hours had to be part-time or less because that is all I could commit to. And I wanted to have an unlimited earning potential and the opportunity to make residual income. That is when I found an amazing opportunity to start my own business. It would allow me to help others and give me the opportunity to empower, inspire and support likeminded people in building their own businesses. Although I was afraid of change and trying something new, I knew that if I did not try it, I would regret it. I knew that nothing would change in my life, if I did not make a change first. So, I took a huge leap of faith and started.

in their lives too. John C. Maxwell stated, “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.” It has been an awesome journey so far and I am excited to see what the next year will bring. I have met beautiful people along the way who have touched my life, and the personal growth has been unimaginable. I love the fact that my children have witnessed, through my journey, my change from a caterpillar into a beautiful, confident butterfly. Change is good.

“Leaders become great not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others.” – John C. Maxwell. I have been in business for a little over a year and it has been amazing. It is a lot of fun and exciting to meet new people, attend events, build relationships, help others and businesses and be a part of a supportive tribe of similar people. Although I was comfortable and safe staying at home, I am extremely happy that I took a chance on myself again and made a CHANGE. Today, I feel that I can do anything through Christ with hard work and perseverance consistently. I feel strong, worthy, empowered, confident, and inspired to help others make changes ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019







Its the holiday season From now until New Year’s Day, your schedule will likely be filled with family obligations, traveling and festive outings with all sorts of tempting treats. It’s no surprise that many of us see our waistlines expand during the holiday season. Even the most disciplined people such as myself can find it difficult to stick to health and fitness routines. Here are some great fit tips that i would like to share with you in to helping you stay fit during the holiday season.

3. Get a work out buddy. Finding a workout buddy that has the same goals as you definitely is great motivation. Meet with a friend or even a family member a few days a week. Think of

You should be able to enjoy life and not be so strict. We can enjoy food, just dont over induldge. eating poor foods multiple times of the day and week is not good. Instead of five cookies how about two. Look for healthier alternatives with what your craving. 5. Avoid sugary drinks. Remember Water is your friend. I think of water as my medicine. I must make sure i don’t forget to drink it. I used to always find it difficult to drink water, especially with a busy schedule. I found it alot easier to drink water thru a straw. It goes down alot faster for me. If you don’t like the taste of water..Add some lemon or any fruit of your choice for added flavor.

1. Always Set goals for yourself. Try to have 5 days a week or 3 days a week to work out. The best workouts to do at this time of year is a hiit cardio workout, which would be a combination of brief, very-high intensity bursts of cardio exercise followed by equal or longer periods of rest. Think 30 seconds to a minute of sprinting, followed by a minute or two of walking or slow jogging. Then Repeating the cycle for just 10 minutes, and you’ll complete a HIIT workout.

Beware of alcohol. It’s empty calories. Remember just like with food you don’t want to overindulge. Limit your alcohol intake. I always find it a lot easier when I don’t bring much money with me to the bar. it helps limit me from buying multiple drinks. If you’re interested in having a great workout email me @

2. Plan your workouts in advance.

it as also good bonding time.

Make your work outs a priority and place them in your scedule.

4. Keep tempting foods out of reach. Always be selective with your treats. I’m a huge belivier in enjoying food.

Follow me on instagram Laylahbunnyfitness And Facebook Laylahbunnyfitnss




My goal is to inspire others and guide them into the right direction to a healthier lifestyle. Call me TODAY! (585) 201-2356



At SHE Salon we are witnessing a phenomenon. We are power playing females who have cracked the magical code. We think positively, we support one another, we truly believe we have it all- and so can you! There is something dynamic that happens when when women genuinely show up for each other. When we lose the facades, cut the b.s. and really have each other’s backs. When we show both the messy and the beautiful parts of ourselves and our work, that all look awfully similar. When we discuss our fears, our missteps, and our breakdowns. And most importantly, when we share our celebrations, our breakthroughs, and dish out on what works! We have to come together in the support, love and guidance needed to run our lives and businesses in a way that feels authentic, confident and inspiring. We ALL crave a network of other women who are chasing their dreams, building their lives and facing the world with our hater blockers on and our heels planted firmly into the ground. We could do it alone, but how much more fun and more 262


successful to do it as a team!! Sadly, it’s hard to find this ! It’s no secret that women get a bad rap for being jealous and catty. We have all partaken in it at some point in our lives. Wether we gossiped about another women, or we were the one gossiped about. And guess what? It’s miserable both ways. If there

is anything that has been learned through growing SHE.. it’s that LIFE ON THE OTHER SIDE IS BEAUTIFUL! This is exactly what we are trying to create together, a movement, if you would. Our salon, which we prefer to refer to as our home, is an outlet where we share our own personal life transformations. It’s a form of

therapy. We share our stories with our guests and each other and try to teach a lesson or learn something from every single experience. This connection is something that is truly remarkable. Especially when you share any pain you have experienced in your life you see there’s a whole other level to connect on. We need each other ! Within our team (technicians and guests) we hear each other. If someone has a question, we answer as best we can. If someone needs an ear, we listen. If someone wants to celebrate her success, we raise our champagne glass and toast her. Truth be told, what goes on in our salon feels like so much more than just a job. It feels like it’s our life’s mission and purpose. The goal behind SHE (Strength, Hope, Empowerment) is to help thousands of women shift their mindsets into a happier, more positive space and ultimately transform their lives and careers for the better. What we have become the most passionate about is working with entrepreneuHERs.

{ SHE ROCS } “Let’s eradicate jealousy, and ultimately learn the power of connection. Let’s start building each other up. Let’s start living up to our potential and ruling the world!”



{ SHE ROCS } “The goal behind SHE (Strength, Hope, Empowerment) is to help thousands of women shift their mindsets into a happier, more positive space and ultimately transform their lives and careers for the better.”

We know what it’s like to blaze our own trail and pursue our passions. We know what it’s like to be questioned about why you would take such a “risky” path. We know what it’s like to not have a road map to success. And we know what it’s like to find those people who DO get it. The people willing to share the secrets, open a door for you, or sometimes just have a glass of wine- or three - with you, and just listen. And BAM! That’s our team! Connecting on real, raw levels. Forming honest friendships and support systems. We s e e h o w magical it is to connect with one another and THAT is what brings the passion to the work that we do every single day. We are blessed. We are currently trying to brand ourselves through this mission of self growth and self development . We want to create an entire brand all about empowering other women! 266


As we grow we hope to only develop more leaders. To come together and find what’s possible when we face our fears, believe in ourselves, and make female empowerment a part of

our success story. There is no reason to hoard information, connections or insight.

Wisdom is meant to be shared, so let’s start sharing what we have learned and make each other better! Lets build confidence in ourselves and each other. Let’s connect with our “why”. Let’s eradicate jealousy, and ultimately learn the power of connection. Let’s start building each other up. Let’s start living up to our potential and ruling the world! TOGETHER we can crack the girl code. Because at the end of the day, that’s what life and business is all about. So sit back, pour yourself a glass of champagne, and join us. At SHE, you can sit with us. And to all of our other lashistas out there.. the secret is out! THERES ENOUGH FOR ALL OF US .

need a filter!

At SHE, we’re not chasing money. We’re chasing happiness. Reminding ourselves everyday that our hearts are our prettiest feature we have and they will never ever







This talk show made me think, “Have women arrived at a place where we are ready to claim our power?”

Women need to step up and claim SHE POWER in order for the world to change. For every woman this means something different, but we all can use similar words and concepts to get into our power.

We are the change-makers and women see how the world can be better. I see that women are rising up and claiming

To BE unstoppable as women we must overcome the desire to run, hide or quit. We have to redefine power and what it means to women as leaders.

Are you willing to change the pattern and contribute to She Power? And if you have already claimed your power are you willing to lead others?

To collectively rise to power and feel the feminine voice of change we have to start with this language and reprogram how we view She Power. VALUE: Women must see power as valuable. And see herself as a powerful contributor. Begin to value yourself as a powerful leader, one who collaborates and connects with other powerful leaders. Adding value to the feminine voice is key for change.

Together we are stronger.

I was listening to a political talk about women and public office the other day. The radio show was reviewing the chance of a female winning the vote for United States President. The radio host started talking about women and power. She mentioned how women tend to avoid power and refuse to step fully into power. Men, on the other hand, grab power, honor power, and welcome it in. Men are taught that power is good and beneficial. Women are still being raised with message to hide power and play small.

the top as decision makers and leaders. And every woman matters. This new power structure is not a 1% power it is a community power.

Ask yourself, “Do I see myself as a valuable asset?” WORTH: See yourself as worthy of health, wealth and happiness. You are worthy. Your self worth is a game-changer. Ask yourself, “Do I feel worthy?” DESERVE: Begin to deserve. Deserve the positive changes you seek. Receive what you want. Deserving is a feeling that is imperative for power. Ask yourself, “Do I deserve to receive happiness, wealth and health?” a bigger and stronger space in the world. We are demanding for our voice to be heard and our values to be trusted. Although this trend is changing, we are still in need of a mass empowerment project to ensure that women rise to

These words value, worth, and deserve will help you begin to gain power in new ways. As you shift your language and begin to use these words, you will shed light on where you feel weak and disempowered and then you can strengthen the weakness. The strengthening is monumental to ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


to your path to power. To strengthen your She Power use the words claim and own. CLAIM: Claim your space in the world. When you Claim your space you are willing to let go of negative relationships, painful habits, and hurtful ways of living in exchange for positive power. Look to where you feel strong and live only from this space. Make sure to only do things that strengthen you. Begin to live your life from bravery and courage. Be fearless in your actions. Like you will go and 272


buy a pair of shoes with conviction. Take your power back and own it with conviction. OWN: Own your space and your power just like you would buy a home. Your power lives inside of you and owning your power is one way to say to the world that you mean business. When you claim your power you may have to revamp how you view power. For many of the women I speak to, they have been abused by the masculine form of power. There are old guard patterns of abuse that have been lingering in her psyche. This abuse has to be realized,

healed and released. By shifting your language look at your own power structure you will begin a new empowered path for your life and great achievements will be made possible. Start the New Year with a fresh perspective on power, we need you! Dr. Pam Denton is a speaker and author of She Means Business: Activating the New Leader. She speaks to audiences and trains women and men in the superpowers that redefine power for modern day advancements. More on Dr. Pamâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Superpower Talks at www.





Photofacial or FotoFacial is a safe non invasive treatment to improve skin texture and appearance by reducing and in many cases eliminating age spots, sun damage, rosacea, broken capillaries, melasma, fine lines and all pigment issues. Intense Pulsed Light (IPL), Broad band light (BBL) are terms associated with Photofacial, and can be used on the face, neck, and other body parts. However, not all laser machines are the same nor do the offer the same results. Some lasers only treat some of the skin issues while others will treat all of the skin concerns. Sciton has trademarked BBL (broad band light.), and considered to be the most powerful IPL device on the market. This is the machine that is available at Vega MedSpa. It is important to do your research and go to a provider that is trained and expierenced in treating many different skin types. Darker skin tones can be at risk when getting laser treatments, and not always considered to be good Canadiate s for laser treatments. This procedure is often recommended to be done in the Fall or Winter. It is important to remain out of the sun immediately after treatment for up to several weeks. When addressing sun damage, it is recommended that your sun exposure be minimized to avoid post inflammatory hyperpigmentation or worsening of age spots and melasma. Also vascular lesions and spider veins can also be aggravated with sun exposure. 274


SPF of 30 or greater should be worn at all times, even during the winter months. Prior to treatments it is important to know that Photofacial can not be done when you are on photosensitizing medications such as accurate, and typically recommended that you wait for six months after cessation of the medication. Photofacial should be performed in a series, of 3-6 treatments usually, performed 3-4 weeks apart.

more blurry and fuzzy as it fades. Most patients report the treatment to feel like a “snap” like a rubber band. These treatments take approximately 30 minutes and cause little discomfort. Full results are seen about 5-6 months after a series, but immediate improvement can be seen as soon as 2 weeks after treatment. Photofacial are rejuvenating and this is the main reason these are requested. The heat emitted helps with collagen formation and helps to reduce redness with treatment of the vascular lesions and spider veins found below the epidermis. Fine lines are improved especially with consistent treatments. Skin cells are stimulated and help for regeneration. Skin will be clearer and smoother and thus appears more vibrant. These are the characteristics of youthful faces. Now newer machines and devices are coming out with combination IPL and radio frequency which adds new levels of improvement.

The amount of treatments are directly related the the specific skin concern that is being treated.

All women’s and men alike should be considering this treatment in effort to improve and rejuvenate their skin.

Immediately after treatment you can expect redness, swelling, and tenderness. Bruising, blistering, and changes in skin pigment is to be expected. Sun spots become darker and more noticeable like coffee grounds before sloughing or flaking off. With vascular lesions you will expect to see redness that becomes

Sorry for late entry, can you give me the date of the next entry. Christina Christina McDonald, NP-C Vega plastic Surgery and MedSpa (585) 383-4040 Voice (585) 383-4051 Fax




Live, love, play at The Circle Play Cafe! Join our Circle at The Circle Play Cafe! A space for community, play and fun for caregivers and children ages 0-6! Our 2,800 sq. foot indoor play area provides a safe and fun play space for kids six and under. In addition to our main play space, we have two separate play areas; one for children over three and one for infants, 0-18 months. We offer a relaxing and judgement-free zone where parents and other caregivers can build relationships and share experiences, all while being able to see their children play from any vantage point!

Hours of Operation: Monday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm Tuesday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm & 4:30 - 7:30 pm Wednesday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm Thursday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm & 4:30 - 7:30 pm Friday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm Saturday: 9:00 am - 12:00 pm Sunday: No Open Play







Founders, Caitlin Hummel, and Ashley Power are excited to invite you to live, love and play with The Circle Play Cafe! Ashley and Caitlin often joke about their excitement meeting each other after their first prenatal yoga class together, each running home to their spouses and families gushing, “I met a mommy friend!” As moms, Ashley and Caitlin both understand ver y well how wonderful, terrifying, exciting, rewarding, and of course, EXHAUSTING, that it can be to take care of young children. We want our patrons to “join our circle” and truly have a sense of community and support at The Circle Play Cafe. Ashley and Caitlin have very different educational and professional backgrounds that they are excited to bring together to offer the best possible experience for patrons. Caitlin Hummel grew up in Greece and now lives in Fairport with her Husband Spencer, son Colton, and daughter Claire. Caitlin went to the University of South Carolina, started her career as an accountant at PwC

and made her way into recruitment where she worked with mission-based institutions in higher education to help them fill important positions. Caitlin grew up with a sister with special needs and is a part of a local non-profit, Artists Unlimited, which provides individuals with physical and/or developmental disabilities the opportunity to participate

in the performing arts. She is excited to be able to bring her experiences working with this population to The Circle Play Cafe to find a way to support each and every one of our patrons! As a new mom, Caitlin struggled to find a way to meet other moms who could relate to what she was going through. She found her way to a prenatal yoga class which is

where she met Ashley! Ashley Power grew up and currently lives in West Irondequoit with her husband James, sons Oliver and Henry, and daughter Lucy. Ashley went to St. Bonaventure (Go Bonnies!) where she studied Marketing and played Division I lacrosse. After graduating, she moved to London where she taught Physical Education to kids ages 3-18 as well as coaching a variety of sports teams. She lived in London for four years and that is where she met her husband. Upon moving back to Rochester, Ashley worked as an Account Manager at CGI Communications where she helped small businesses grow their online presence, before becoming a stay-at-home mom. Ashley is thrilled to be able to share her experiences with the community we build at The Circle Play Cafe! Our 2,800 square foot space brings two things together: ONE, a safe and fun play space for kids six and under, and TWO, a relaxing and judgment-free zone where parents and other caregivers can build relationships and share experiences, all while being able to see their children play from any vantage point.





In addition to our main play space, we have two separate play areas; one for children over three and one for infants, 0-18 months. These separate areas will allow for: • Older siblings to explore and have more challenging activities and ageappropriate equipment. • Infants to safely enjoy tummy-time and sensory play. • All of the toddlers in between to explore, learn and play! Our separate event room is used for birthday parties, private events, support groups, speakers and classes. This extra space allows us to accommodate to your needs and offer a truly customized experience. When booking a birthday party, you 284


can choose to host a party during normal open-play hours with our event room reserved for you and your guests only OR you can choose to host a private event with the event room and entire play-space reserved just for you and your guests.

We are proud to partner with other local businesses to provide fresh and tasty options. Bay and Goodman pizza located right next door has created a kid’s menu just for us. You are welcome to order from them and enjoy your meal together in our cafe.

We understand that some children prefer to play independently, so during any time that there are no events being hosted, we offer our event room as an arts and crafts area for kids to use with adult supervision and have a different craft out each week for children to explore and enjoy.

Come play with us during our open play hours.

If you are hungry, our cafe provides a variety of beverage options, including coffee (freshly roasted beans from Fair Pour), juice boxes, and water. We also have an assortment of snacks available for kids and adults alike.

Monday: 9:00 am-2:00 pm Tuesday: 9:00 am-2:00 pm.Tuesday : 4:30 pm-7:30 pm Wednesday: 9:00 am-2:00 pm Thursday: 9:00 am-2:00 pm Thursday : 4:30 pm-7:30 pm Friday: 9:00 am-2:00 pm Saturday: 9:00 am-12:00 pm Sunday: No Open Play







274 N GOODMAN ST SUITE B116 (585) 473-2090 I WWW.TH







I was born in 1966 in Indiana. I grew up watching Alfred Hitchcock movies and a classic soap opera called Dark Shadows. In High School, I loved Mary Shelley, Stephen King and V. C. Andrews. I then advanced to Clyde Barker. I was fascinated with horror, reading horror gave me a chance to escape. I always felt that no matter how bad I thought I may have it, the poor people I read in those horror novels always had it so much worse! Which in turn, made me realize my life wasn’t that bad.

ago. This last year, due to a charity event, I tried my hand at writing a children’s book. Something, I had never planned on doing, but have thoroughly enjoyed! So much so, I do readings for the children in full costume, with my fairy helpers and props. Children love it! And honestly, being able to connect with the children, has been

Settling in New Jersey when both my boys were just starting school, also gave them the chance to get the same exposure. Which in turn, gave them the flexibility of acceptance that I did not have growing up. I started writing horror stories 16 years 290


Unfortunately, when I did marry (at 18) I traded one evil for another. Married 18 years to an emotional abusive man who loved to assure me, I would never be smart enough to accomplish anything. Let alone, entertain the idea of going to college. Ironically, we married in his senior year of college, where I worked two jobs while he doubled majored and concentrated on his studies. Don’t get me wrong, I was fortunate to stay home and raise my two sons. Being a wife and mother was my place. And honestly, I loved being a mom. However, when we moved to New Jersey, my husband was suddenly embarrassed that I was the only wife that did not work. Even though he wouldn’t allow me to work, once the children were born. However, his new job gave him the perfect excuse to travel a lot and play house with his secretary, creating a secret family.

In 1984, I married and we moved to Chicago. We lived there for five years, then back to Indiana for five years and then finally to where I am now, New Jersey. Moving to Chicago and New Jersey was a real eye opener for a small town girl like me. But one, I am so happy I was able to experience! Chicago introduced me to a whole new world and New Jersey simply added to my growth as a person. Unlike a small town, I was exposed to a melting pot of different religions, races and politics.

Other than that, I was to be a wife and mother only.

such a rewarding experience for myself! Just a quick explanation of who I am, how I was raised, and why this all has happened so late in my life. I came from a highly religious family, in the Mid-West, where I was not allowed to think about going to college. In fact, I had to beg my parents to let me finish High School. They wanted me to drop out at 16, to go door to door.

After my divorce, my entire family (and I mean entire family, along with some life time friends) disowned me, for divorce is not allowed. Somehow, my ex-husband’s abusiveness and lifestyle was my fault. Apparently, I wasn’t smart enough to be a good wife either. I had tried writing when I was married the first time, but when I finally got the nerve to show it to my ex, he laughed at me. Belittled me, and that was the end of it.



{ IN HER OWN WORDS } “Advice I would you give to anyone who wants to become a writer is I think the first step really is, simply believing in yourself!”

When I met my current husband, Paul, I came across my story while moving in with him. Taking a big leap of faith, I read him the story. He loved it! Was curious how I was going to end it. Encouraged me to end it! For the first time in my life, I had someone who believed in me. Which in turn, allowed me to believe in myself.

other charity events with the Legion Club. (Although we are no members of any clubs at this time, they like to fight over us but we prefer to be able to do multiple charities.) I also was able to donate my books to Kenya. Which I am very excited about, a friend of mine traveled to Kenya and

Paul and I have been married 15 years. A year and a half ago, he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Colon Cancer. He was given 2 years to live. I was devastated, he is literally my heart and soul. It was and is a dark time we have dealt with and are winning. He is clear! They call him their miracle. Although, it could come back at any time it all looks clear and very promising, so we are only thinking positively! I have to admit it was an eye opener. Paul and I have always deeply loved one another, two halves making a whole, but since we have had to face this we appreciate life even more. We live, love and laugh as much as we can. Making as many memories, as we can. Because the community, friends and his family were so supportive during that dark time, I have been trying to give back as much as I can. The children’s book has helped me accomplish what I want to contribute. My son is in the Coast Guard, so I have donated books to the families of active duty personnel. My husband and I participate in motorcycle runs (yes, I ride my own Harley which I named Bling) for the POW and 292


there in person and read to them. I also love contributing to libraries. In the small town I grew up, there was no library. We had to wait on the Book Mobile to visit once a month. In which, we were very limited to what we could read, due to religious beliefs. But I am proud to say all of my books are in the new library back home in Indiana, library here in New Jersey, Alaska, Oklahoma, Dominica Republic, Nicaragua, and Paris and believe it or not they have signed copies of my books in a Russian Library. Who would have ever thought a country girl from Indiana would have her books in a Russian Library? (Full credit to friends I have met over the years!) I am an open book, my past will inspire other women to believe in themselves. The only reason I list my age (53) is to show the different era I was raised in and that it is never too late to start believing in yourself. I’m not ashamed of my age.

took my children’s book there for a new community building that was opening. They not only loved the story but they listen to my reading of the story I had posted on Facebook, from the Renaissance Fair, so they can follow along and learn English. My friend is returning for Christmas, so I donated a big box of my books, crayons and some toys. Hopefully, one day I can go

I am currently working on my ninth horror book, the next in my series White Noise – Volume 3. I plan on there being a total of four in the series, I already have the outline ready for the fourth one. They are my first collection of short stories. Each containing 13 short stories along with a main story tying them all together. As for the children’s books I list five. As we speak, three are available and the other two are in production. They should be available by the time this article is published.

{ {INSHIFT+CONTROL HER OWN WORDS } } “As a writer, we need to allow readers to think for themselves and be able to relate to characters we have created. Readers have wonderful imaginations, let them use it! ”

Messages I try to convey through storytelling is in my horror genre, I try to make my story one that allows the reader to identify with the story but more importantly, escape from everyday living. I put a lot of research into my horror novels. Not only to make the story more credible but if a reader comes across something they may question, they can look it up themselves and feel satisfied. How many of you, after seeing a movie or reading a book, wonder if that really happened? Then you look it up, out of curiosity, which in the end prolongs the story in your mind. I also am always looking for a fear factor. That being, something that can scare all readers. My goal is to take the reader and place them in a situation they may be able to identify with, in their own lives. For my children’s book, I try to have a moral that doesn’t look like a moral. A subtle way for a child to learn something without them realizing they are learning. Fun easy stories, with a catch to get them to want to pick up the book more than once. I created my children’s books as a “gender less” story. I do not use “he or she” throughout the book. My main character is named “Ani” which can be a boy or girl’s name but also if you spell it “An1” can be “Anyone” allowing the reader to be anyone. I also use a “Ruler” verses a “King or Queen”. I did this so that as a child, they can easily put their selves into the story and be able to relate to the characters. Growing up in a society where there was a definite stigma gender based agenda, I wanted to create stories where there are no gender agendas. Where while reading the story, a child can feel like this story relates to them or even the person reading the story to them. Allowing the child to feel that the story is unique for them.



One of my favorite writers is Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein, not only was it amazing that she wrote a horror story in her day and age but also her political views were way ahead of her time. Unfortunately, in the past there are very few examples of where women were allowed to express their selves, political or otherwise. And yet for a woman today, those women can become an important role model, even though they are from the past. In this day and age, there may not be just one woman’s name that will come to mind in the future. Not one woman’s political idea or belief but instead, a generation of women with different beliefs and ideas all coming together. And that is a wonderful thing, for we all have different beliefs and ideas but acceptance of all, is where we will gain our greatest strength. Some obstacles I had to overcome during my career is I find cyberbullying to be a concern. It is a very fine line to walk. On one hand, you want the freedom of expressing yourself, whether it be for good or bad. On the other hand, there has to be a responsibility attached to that expression. You have to ask yourself, are you using your comments on line for a personal vendetta or a legitimate complaint. I find it frustrating when so many jump to criticism verses complimenting. Someone’s life long hard work can be diminished in a paragraph from someone who has no idea what it took for that person to even put their selves out there. Perhaps as a society being kinder to one another, while still expressing ourselves, would help us all grow. Types of feedback I get from my books

for the most part, people enjoy my stories. One of the more common compliments I hear, is how easily the reader can relate to my characters in a story. For example, in one of my books I have had several people say how well they can identify with this one character. They go on to say “…he reminds me of my boyfriend, husband or even a neighbor”. Curious, I always ask them what the person looks like that they are identifying the character from the story with, surprisingly enough it looks nothing like the character I had in mind! Why is that? Well, we all might know an asshole but they may not be fat and balding. My point is, I think sometimes writers do not give readers enough credit. Readers have placed their precious time, in our hands. As a writer, we need to allow readers to think for themselves and be able to relate to characters we have created. Readers have wonderful imaginations, let them use it! Don’t get caught up in the details, sometimes letting the readers fill in the details will make the story more individualized to them. Advice I would you give to anyone who wants to become a writer is I think the first step really is, simply believing in yourself! Today there are so many tools you can use to your advantage. The internet alone, will help you find a wealth of information to help you enhance your story. Personally though, I do think sometimes we overload ourselves with rules and techniques on how to write. So much so, that you are almost terrified to write that first sentence! Writing can come easy to some, no different than painting for an artist. My suggestion is to simply write, when and where ever you want. You don’t have to be structured, you don’t have to have a quota





of words like steps we want to get in for the day. I find if you force yourself to write, it can become harder to write. Also, write the way you like to read. Meaning, if you like dialogue write dialogue or if you like first, second or third person, write it that way. Next suggestion is a classic, the old saying ‘write what you know’ is great advice! Writing about something you know or are passionate about, is always easier to write. However, do not pigeonhole yourself into thinking it has to be something you have experienced personally. It can be an experience from another that was relayed to you or even a dream. A dream may not be real but it still is something we have 298


experienced, you can draw from it.

It’s not their creation.

Besides that, the most important thing that I cannot stress enough is, do not write for the idea of making money. Writing is a priceless gift that you give to yourself. If others enjoy your story, that is great! If you make money from your stories, even better! But believe me that first time you read or hold a story you created in your hands, is the most satisfying gift you can give yourself!

Create and own your story. A story has a beginning, a middle and an ending. Just like life. Although, this life you are creating, you have control over and that gives you power! Power to help others, power to help yourself, power to scare or comfort, power to express yourself, and power to even question yourself. Writing is the power to take others to a different place, if even for a short time, use that time to tell your story.

Each and every one of us has a story to tell. Will you be able to tell it the way you see it or feel it? Only you, will know if you did! It doesn’t matter if others may not see it or feel it the way you did, it’s not their story.

To contact Author Tammy Vreeland Email :



Artist Karen Kirn lives in downtown Rochester and moved here from Long Island in 1973. We were lucky enough to sit down for a few moments and lear a little bit more about this months “Queen of Arts”.

computer and the Salesforce program, I didn’t have the time so I just did it for charity events and raffles. When the company I worked for decided that sales reps were no longer necessary I received 9 months of severance.

About 30 years ago my father-in-law, Nicholas Penna was making jewelry with pieces of turquoise and fetish. He always told me he would teach me but never got around to it. When he died the family gave me a couple of boxes of beads and his tools. I still use one of those tools in every piece I make .

With the help of a generous soul from FB, Sarah Meurs Edenstrom, I started My Etsy shop. Not Like Other Girls Art. As the old Deadhead that I am I picked the name from a line in one of my favorite Grateful Dead tunes, Scarlet Begonias. I am fascinated with how light goes through glass and enjoy sitting in my workshop near the sunlit window to design jewelry. Most recently I have been inspired by a necklace I saw on an actress in Peaky Blinders. The middle white drip was made by Lindsey Peck from the U.K. And the blue drips and spacers were made by Nolly Gelsinger from Westminster Maryland.

My granddaughter started “helping” me make ornaments at age 3. By the time she was 5 years old it was clear she had quite a knack for design and made earrings and ornaments for family and teachers. Now at age 13 she has her own display at craft shows and has taught others how to do it as well. We also have a FB page Karen and Lily’s Jewlery Twenty years ago I became an auto glass sales rep and started making earrings for giveaways instead of the usual type of promotional items. It was well received so I continued for many years. When my sales job became more complex with the addition of a 300


I began looking for FB groups and found amazing jewelry components for sale from lampwork artists all over the country and the U.K. Each item I make has a handmade lampwork component in it.

That is when I looked into Etsy and found lampwork bead artists. The first artist I found was Astrid Boyce from Arlington Texas. She made the most beautiful rainbow beads.

I am just starting to bring my jewelry to events and craft shows. Wish me luck! W w w. Et s y. c o m / s h o p / NotLikeOtherGirlsArt Currently working part time at Mr.Glass and Viaggio Shoes















NUTRITION FOR YOUR MIND Have you set your New Year Resolutions yet? If you are like 71 percent of people (according to a survey of 2,000 people last year), your Resolution is to diet or eat healthier and for most of you the reason is to lose weight. This is a great goal because being overweight can increase your risk of diabetes, heart disease and a lot of other health ailments.

- Research now shows that major stress can reduce the amount of brain tissue in areas that regulate emotions and self-control. - Stress may amplify the immune response to asthma triggers such as pollen, animal dander, or dust. And if you are still thinking about you

- Stress can raise blood sugar, and if you have type-2 diabetes, you may notice that your blood sugar levels are higher if you are stressed.

We all want to be happy and as stressfree as possible. Being happy and being healthy are interlinked. In addition to yoga, meditation, and exercise, nutrition can have a huge impact on reducing your stress levels. Here are my top 10 food recommendations to combat stress: 1.) Salmon: Salmon is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of poly-unsaturated fat, which have been shown to decrease inflammation in the brain and body. Oftentimes, deficiencies in this nutrient can result in depression. Omega-3s help serotonin cross through cell membranes in the brain. Serotonin is a chemical in the brain that sends signals between cells, and serotonin balance is extremely important for mental well-being.

I want to challenge you to eat healthier for another reason—your mind! If you are like many Americans (55 percent according to a recent Gallop Poll), you experience a high level of stress daily. And almost everybody experiences situational stress. Did you know that stress is the basic cause of 60 percent of all diseases and 75 percent of doctor visits are stress-related? Stress is not just a mood state—it damages your organs. Here are just a few ways stress can affect your health: - If you suffer from chronic stress, it could be affecting your heart health. While an exact link between chronic stress and heart attacks isn’t clear, studies have shown that individuals who suffer from jobrelated stress have a 23% more likely to have a first heart attack vs. people with no job-related stress.

to cravings for sugar and fat. So yes, a fringe benefit of being less stressed is weight loss!

desire to reduce your waistline, stress can increase the amount of fat that your body stores and enlarges the size of fat cells. This can lead to weight gain and increase your risk for obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Also, stress has a terrible impact on your food cravings! Do you find yourself reaching for that pint of ice cream when you’re stressed? There’s a scientific reason for that! Cortisol, a hormone released by your body when it’s stressed, is linked

2.) Avocados: We need B vitamins for healthy nerves and brain cells, and feelings of anxiety may be rooted in a B vitamin deficiency. Avocados are rich in stress-relieving B vitamins. Bonus: They’re also high in monounsaturated fat and potassium, which help lower blood pressure. 3.) Berries: Whether it’s blueberries, raspberries or strawberries, these little fruits are big on antioxidants that have stress-relieving properties. Berries are also an excellent source of vitamin C, which can keep our cortisol levels in check 4.) Nuts: Pistachios, Almonds, and Walnuts – The B and E vitamins in almonds are great for relieving stress. They ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


KELLY’S CHOICE }} {{ SHIFT+CONTROL “As you are in the midst of the holiday season, keep your stress levels in check. Hang out with people who make you laugh and smile and limit your time with those who make your stress levels surge! “

also contain stress-reducing magnesium and zinc. Walnuts and pistachios also help fight stress thanks to B vitamins. 5.) Leafy Green Veggies: Green leafy vegetables like spinach contain folate, which produces dopamine, a pleasure-inducing brain chemical, helping you keep calm.

potassium in milk can help relieve muscle spasms triggered by feeling tense. 9.) Seeds: Flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds are all great sources of magnesium (as are leafy

6.) Turkey: That sleepy feeling you get after eating Thanksgiving dinner is due to the amino acid tryptophan found in turkey. Tryptophan signals the brain to release the feelgood chemical serotonin, which promotes calmness and even tiredness. Just make sure that you ditch the skin and choose the white meat!

As you are in the midst of the holiday season, keep your stress levels in check. Hang out with people who make you laugh and smile and limit your time with those who make your stress levels surge! Take some time for yourself and choose to eat healthfully BEFORE the New Year. Work the above foods into your regimen and you will notice your stress levels decline. And enjoy the weight loss that will naturally come with these stress-reducing food choices. Here’s to a happy and healthy New Year to you and yours!

7.) Oatmeal: Oatmeal is another food that helps get the calm-inducing hormone serotonin flowing. Go with thick-cut, old fashioned oats that require cooking instead of instant oatmeal. Why? Coarse oats are higher in fiber and so they take longer to digest (meaning their calming effect lasts longer). 8.) Skim Milk: A glass of warm skim milk before bed is a time-tested remedy for insomnia and fidgetiness. That’s because milk is high in antioxidants, vitamins B2 and B12, as well as protein, potassium, and calcium. The protein lactium has a calming effect by lowering blood pressure, while the 308


10.) Dark Chocolate: I saved the best for last. Who doesn’t love chocolate? Chocolate has an undeniable link to mood; we eat more chocolate if we are depressed to make ourselves feel better. And it works. Just be sure to stick with dark chocolate, which not only has healthy antioxidants, but can also lower blood pressure, making us feel calmer and more relaxed.

Kelly Springer is the founder of Kelly’s Choice nutritional company. She’s appeared on many television shows, including Good Morning America! To hire a dietitian for yourself or your worksite, visit www. greens, yogurt, nuts, and fish). Loading up on the mineral may help regulate emotions. Magnesium has been shown to help alleviate depression, fatigue, and irritability.

Also, visit our website for more nutrition tips and recipes!

KELLY’S CHOICE }} {{ SHIFT+CONTROL “We all want to be happy and as stress-free as possible. Being happy and being healthy are interlinked. In addition to yoga, meditation, and exercise, nutrition can have a huge impact on reducing your stress levels.“





There are people who teach us that Christopher Columbus discovered America. Then, they give us tests as children and reward us when we repeat that, and other ‘facts’ that we have been taught. We all know that you cannot ‘discover’ a new place if people already live there. We just go along with it and let the next generation learn the same false information. Similarly, we are told that if we brush with fluoride toothpaste and/ or use fluoridated water, we will protect our teeth from cavities. Fluoride is actually a dangerous chemical and most toothpaste packages will instruct you to contact a Poison Control Center right away if too much of it is swallowed. The reality is that we use these products regularly and then take turns going to the dentist to get our teeth filled because of the cavities that were not actually prevented. What gives? Possibly the most dangerous thing that we are told or taught is that we are not beautiful unless we use all of the products that are marketed to us. We NEED to have makeup, killer fingernails (that can only be achieved at the nail salon), perms for our hair, weaves, wigs, eyelash extensions, perfectly manicured eyebrows, etc. The list goes on and on. Most of these products can be dangerous to our systems, our wallets, and also psychologically. Studies have shown that there are higher instances 312


of cancer in women who color and/or perm their hair than in those that do not. While I would much rather see women buy stocks and bonds than things to embellish themselves, I fully understand that it is always nice to feel good and feel like we are attractive.

The most important thing is to make sure that if we use any of these products, we are doing it for the right reasons. Just like we have been programmed to think that the things that we see in

the media, in school, in church and in our homes as children are all true, we have been led to believe that we should spend our hard earned money to match or somehow imitate the images that are projected to us about beauty. My thought is that beauty comes from within. When someone is truly beautiful, there is something about them that starts from the inside and shows up on the outside. We all know people who are physically attractive, but have a bad attitude or big ego. Then, in our minds, they no longer look as good to us as we had originally thought. On the flip side, there are people who physically look ‘average’ or ‘plain’ to us but have such a big heart and vibrant personality that we perceive them to be beautiful or handsome. We are told that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I want to always encourage everyone to take a good hard look inside of themselves and explore what is in there. Then, we should all ask ourselves about the products that are promoted to us. Do we use them? If so, are we careful about which ones we choose? Do they contain harmful chemicals or can we find options that have more natural ingredients? Are we using them because WE think that we look better with them, or because we saw someone on TV or a magazine or somewhere who is



â&#x20AC;&#x153;We are told that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I want to always encourage everyone to take a good hard look inside of themselves and explore what is in there.â&#x20AC;?

{ TRACY TALKS } â&#x20AC;&#x153;We should strive to be our authentic selves, and not worry about the images. We should set our own standards for beauty and understand why unattainable images are being shown to us.â&#x20AC;?

to imitate those people, or should we create our own individual styles? Do we do it to attract partners or maybe because our friends told us that we look good? In reality, are they actually telling us that we have successfully imitated the images in the media? Should we really worry about what 316


Beyonce and the gang are rocking? Or, should we recognize that a handful of people like her are paid a whole lot of money to create images of things that are part of a monster marketing campaign? Many of us know that the images that we see are not achievable by most humans. Those pictures are manufactured. There are all kinds of

lighting tricks, digital editing, and special effects at work to create those images. We should strive to be our authentic selves, and not worry about the images. We should set our own standards for beauty and understand why unattainable images are being shown to us. Understand the game and just do YOU.






What an amazing year and progression of seasons it has been here in Upstate NY! And with barely a blink of an eye, the holidays are upon us. The time frame between Thanksgiving and Christmas is really compressed this year, and it seems the frenetic holiday pace started early in November. Perhaps 2019 will be the year to take a deep breath, and truly engage in the beauty of the season and embrace the spirit of giving combining old and new traditions.

decorated wreaths to grace your front door or fireplace mantel. We can embellish a beautiful traditional Fraser wreath with fresh magnolia leaves, juniper berries, seeded eucalyptus, holly berries, creating a magnificent statement to greet your guests. Our ribbon collection includes everything from traditional plaids and checks

My in laws founded Genrich’s Garden Center, Florist & Greenhouses in 1960 and the Christmas holiday was always an integral part of the business. Over the last 50+ years, the product mix has transitioned with the times and the scope of live green goods offered has expanded. I treasure the memories we share with our customers: young families carefully choosing a fresh cut Christmas tree for their babies’ first Christmas; neighborhood families who walk to our garden center with a wagon, loading their tree on as special cargo; families taking photos of their children in the garden center to share on their Christmas cards – it is heartwarming to experience this very real definition of “community”.

to lush velvets adorned with sparkly embroidered accents. In addition, our designers always welcome the opportunity to collaborate with you and design a custom wreath just for you.

This month when you visit our garden center in West Irondequoit, you’ll see a selection of stunning hand

We specialize in transforming your porch pots and patio planters from your fall annuals by filling them with

evergreen boughs – Fraser, white pine, cedar, adding large sugar pine cones, natural or sparkle twigs, even white twinkle lights. Voila ! You’ll be the envy of the neighborhood with this elegant, sophisticated look by your entrance. Add a swag on your carriage light or mixed fresh garland on your porch railings and your front porch will look like it belongs in Better Homes & Gardens. We can show you how to achieve this look without the stress of figuring it out on your own. As you enter the gift shop, be prepared to take a moment to explore, discover and appreciate the nuances of each décor theme you encounter. Your senses may be overwhelmed with the expanse of themed Christmas trees and coordinated displays, be prepared to linger at every magical display you encounter. Our designers excel at creating vignettes that can easily translate into your home as a whole or in parts. We put new spins on classic designs by blending timeless florals with vintage themed gifts and adding some modern aesthetic accents. The end result being an updated look in your home that has that “wow” factor. Gifting is a theme that resonates through the holidays. Our gift shop is overflowing with unique finds to delight everyone on your list. We pride ourselves on sourcing affordable yet adorable stocking stuffers, in addition to extraordinary pieces ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


for the most discriminating person. You’ll see handcrafted ornaments and signed and numbered dolls from Katherine’s Collection that will become treasured family heirlooms. Need a quick hostess gift ? Everyone loves body care products from Caren, or contemporary jar candles from Root. Pair that with a bouquet of fresh cut flowers and sprigs of fragrant evergreen branches – perfect presentation for the party ! Of course, we have an affinity for anything floral or garden related, so as you browse through the gift shop into the greenhouse, you’ll feel like you’ve entered a botanical garden. 320


All our poinsettias are grown on the premises and are of unparalleled quality. If you prefer a more organic look, we’ve got potted amaryllis bulbs in an array of colors, frosty ferns that boast texture galore, Norfolk island pines reminiscent of a Charlie Brown tree, and don’t forget Christmas cactus in astonishing bright hues. We’re open year-round, so even when the weather isn’t conducive to outdoor gardening, we still stock a great selection of Woodstock wind chimes, European gardening tools, gloves and watering cans, garden art including waterproof canvas prints and decorative kinetic spinners. If

our selection becomes overwhelming, remember Gift Cards are one size that fits all! We are open seven days a week with extended holiday hours, call us at 585/342-9830 for details. Our personnel are always happy to assist with requests for custom wreaths, garlands and floral, in addition to offering friendly, professional opinions in selecting the just perfect gift. Let Genrich’s become part of YOUR holiday traditions !









7 I 585.342.9830 I WWW.GENRICHS.COM



Most people don’t realize they are born rich, with infinite potential already present within themselves. They allow their shortage of money or their current results or past events to keep them thinking thoughts from a place of lack and limitation: “I’m stuck in a dead end job.” “I can’t lose weight. After all, I’ve failed so many times, so what makes me think I can do it this time?”

never receive what you want. You’ll only receive more of a lack. Your lack created your mindset, and life will be a struggle. Why? Because your thoughts may go like this: You don’t have enough money in your checking account. You’re miserable in your relationship, and you can’t seem to stop the cycle of attracting volatile, codependent partners from appearing in your life.

“I’m not pretty enough, handsome enough, smart enough or make enough money to do what I REALLY want. I’ll probably be stuck like this forever.”

Even if there are things in your life you want (but you’re thinking of those things in a doubtful, negative, fearful manner) and coming from a place of lack, you’ll 324


Opportunities will open up. Experiences you never had before will present themselves to you. Life, and everything you have always wanted, will appear for you to absorb, enjoy and receive with ease. The rule about the law of attraction is this  send good thoughts out and receive good things back. Raise your vibrational state (by clear, focused, positive thinking), and you’ll meet your soul mate. You’ll rake in multiple streams of income. You’ll witness your health improve, and every area will work for you, instead of against you.

If you have had similar thoughts, then keep reading. Or share it with someone you know who is stuck, spinning their wheels and frustrated they are not moving forward in life and business. These fearful thoughts aren’t just a flittering, negative way of daydreaming your life away. It’s much more than a mere thought or attitude. Whether you realize it or not, these “thoughts” are creating the reality you exist in today. Negative thoughts about money, love, health, your goals, dreams and ambitions are sending out a vibration to the universe what you want more of.

perceptions of yourself and thoughts you send out, you get back (either immediately or with time). On the other hand, if you begin transforming negative thoughts into positive ones, your reality will begin to shift, and almost as if by magic, change for you and for the taking.

You want to stop smoking but just don’t think you can. More than anything, you want to start your own business but can’t seem to muster up the courage to really “go for it.” But isn’t life meant to be easy, joyful and full of abundance? Yes, it sure is. In other words, what feelings, attitudes,

How differently would your life be if it was no longer a struggle? Put the practice of attraction into your daily life as mentioned in this book, and you’ll no longer read about other people’s stories of success. You’ll know for yourself just how prosperous your life could truly be. One of the simplest ways to start to execute this in a very practical way is spelled out in the book called The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles. At the turn of the twentieth

{ DR P’S POSITIVITY } “Opportunities will open up. Experiences you never had before will present themselves to you. Life, and everything you have always wanted, will appear for you to absorb, enjoy and receive with ease.”



{ {DR P’S POSITIVITY ELITEMIND PRO }} “Being grateful for what you already have brings more good things to you, and being grateful for what you desire as if it already exists will bring it to you with greater speed and reliability than merely hoping or praying.”

century there was a plethora of so-called “success” literature that helped guide the American psyche into an age of incredible invention and economic explosion. The lessons taught in this book are profound yet simple. And the riches we speak of here are not just money, but the numerous other reaches that come from our inner potential and spirit.

with greater speed and reliability than merely hoping or praying. There is a specific way to construct a gratitude exercise to move you forward toward your goals. Express five things you are grateful for in your current life. It could be as simple as hot running water.

What are the steps of the science of getting rich and how dos gratitude come into place with this?

Know that there is a formless substance that pervades the entire universe and it is intelligent. Relate yourself to this formless substance by making your mind one with it. How do you make yourself one with the intelligence of the Universe? Gratitude.

Being grateful for what you already have brings more good things to you, and being grateful for what you desire as if it already exists will bring it to you 326


Now, go about your day in the firm conviction that you are receiving that which you desire and starts to notice when things start to show up in your life! Working with a coach will accelerate your results and give you clarity that just self-help will not provide. But you really now have the keys of how to grow rich through gratitude. I look forward to hearing your stories!

Create a clear picture of what you want.

You relate to it through gratitude – gratitude for what is and gratitude for what you desire as if it is already a reality in your life.

Write down guidance you receive. Next, send love to three people that bother you. Yes! Three people that bother you.

Next, list out five things you are grateful for that you desire, but expressed in the present tense. Next, spend five minutes in silence. Suspend your thoughts and just open up your mind to your inner wisdom.

Dr. Sraddha Prativadi is a Transformational Coach and Business and Personal Development Consultant and founder of She combines her expertise in coaching, holistic integrative health, energy healing, spirituality, medicine, and hypnotherapy to accelerate you to your big goals in a custom approach. Receive your Life by Design Accelerator Plan and coaching call at today. If you would like more guidance on your specific situation or guidance on how to implement the ideas in this article, then the Elite Mind PRO 13 Point Life by Design Accelerator plan is something great for you to receive with a free coaching call.










3 3 Go to to receive your 13-point Life by Design Accelerator Plan and be invited into this cohort!






The CBD industry is in the midst of a boom, stores are popping up everywhere in the Rochester area, and we wanted to do something a little different. Thalia Pabon owner of Your CBD Store in Irondequoit, NY opened her store along with her brother Julio Pabon in late March of this year located in the Great Win Plaza located at 1971 E. Ridge Road.

store in Bradenton in 2018 and just one year later the company now has more than 500 retail outlets. By 2020, they expect there to be more than 1,000 Your CBD Stores that will help provide relief and comfort to others. Your CBD Store team has worked very hard to ensure we deliver the highest quality products to our stores. We are

There are currently 19 Your CBD Store locations in New York State alone and over 500 plus stores nationwide, we are the largest retailer focusing on quality products while being transparent to our customers and focusing on education. All stores offer a tailored, consultative approach when it comes to sales. Your CBD Store founder, Rachael Quinn desired to help others find pain relief through the use of natural, hemp-derived products. Rachael who suffered from Crohnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s disease was looking for a way to feel better. She was willing to try anything and one of her friends recommended she try CBD oil, Rachel Quinn after taking CBD for 45 days noticed significant improvements to her health and she felt that she had to pass that on to others that she knew were suffering. She launched her first

not just an online store or someone who slaps our label on another product. We formulate using our own material, and we are always pushing quality over bottom line pricing. CBD, or cannabidiol, is a compound found in the cannabis plant which has many medical benefits. Your CBD Stores products are made using only the highest quality, organically grown hemp from Colorado which has been certified by that stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Department of Agriculture. This phytocannabinoid

rich (PCR) hemp has a naturally high CBD level, and an abundance of other beneficial cannabinoids (CBG, CBN, CBC), as well as flavonoids, terpenes, and essential amino acids. We use a CO2 extraction process, which eliminates the need for chemical solvents and produces a high-quality, full-spectrum CBD. For our non detectable -THC products, the CBD is processed again to remove all traces of THC. Every product goes through independent labs where it is tested, and the lab test results are available to the public. Each product label has a QR code to easily access the full lab report which also includes total content of cannabinoids. Your CBD Store only carries SunMed products, which won Best Tincture and Topical Relief Cream at the USA CBD Expo. We also carry Sunflora products which is our beauty line which also won an award for best CBD cosmetic skin care. We carry products such as watersolubles, topical roll on with lidocaine, edibles, capsules, vape products, bath bombs, lotions, lip balms and even products for pets. There are different ways that CBD can be used to help you, you might use a product such as ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ LOCAL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT } “Your CBD Store is designed to create a warm and inviting environment where consumers can feel comfortable speaking with trained sales associates about their needs.”

a water soluble that’s quicker acting, use a tincture if you need something that’s longer acting or use the beauty products such as our Collagen Cream which has CBD and Vitamin E in which both carry the anti- inflammatory properties. Your CBD Store is designed to create a warm and inviting environment where consumers can feel comfortable speaking with trained sales associates about their needs. Staff will sit with each customer and discuss an individualized wellness solution. Our goal is not to be just one more CBD store. We really strive to make a difference and improve lives. We are 330


passionate about the power of CBD and believe most people can benefit from using it if they understand exactly what it is and how it can help their body heal. Using high-quality, organic ingredients and providing easy access to the lab reports differentiates Your CBD Store’s products from other stores like gas stations, grocery stores, and vape shops selling CBD.

For complete information, visit To learn more about how CBD can assist you or please call the store at (585) 978-7441. Your CBD Store is located at 1971 E. Ridge Rd, Irondequoit, NY 14622 in the Great Win Plaza.

We’re the industry-leading and most reputable brand in the CBD industry. Not only are we committed to providing safe, quality products, but we are trained to answer questions and provide expert guidance for our clients and always recommending they have a conservation with their medical provider.

These products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Consult your physician before use. Must be 18 or older or accompanied by an adult.

Your CBD Stores have one primary mission — to educate.





Hand Painted Treasures The value in artwork is its uniqueness. I, like many others, got tired of seeing the same factory-made pieces to decorate my home. I decided to create decorations myself and in doing so, discovered the beauty in handmade items.


Are you looking for something new this holiday season? There is something for every occasion!


Facebook: Modernly Ann-tique Instagram: @modernlyann E-mail:



We often hear the term “in sickness and in health” at weddings, but are so caught up in the excitement and joy of the day that we don’t give much thought to illness entering into the equation. But with almost half of the American population dealing with some type of chronic condition, consideration of illness and its affect on every part of the relationship is crucial. All relationships, as wonderful as they can be, can have their share of ups and downs; it’s only natural when you unite two people together who have different life experiences, backgrounds, lifestyles, personalities, and behaviors. Then, if you add a chronic illness into the mix, your relationship may begin to feel a little crowded. Luckily, with some discussion, planning, and most importantly, communication, chronic illness just may become the thing that brings you two even closer together. So how can couples build a solid foundation and work together to make the most out of life despite an illness? I don’t have all the answers, but as someone who has lived with lupus, a brain aneurysm, and other chronic illnesses for almost two decades, I have learned some things along the way that I’d love to share with you. When I first began dating my now husband over 14 years ago, he was well aware of my health conditions. And while I was transparent with him, I still wasn’t completely 334


comfortable telling everyone else. I didn’t want to be treated differently or known as just “the girl with lupus.” And even though he saw me as so much more than just someone with an illness, sadly, some people didn’t agree with him. In fact, they warned him not to marry a “sick girl.” It seems they were worried that he would have to take care of me for the rest of his life and that I couldn’t give him children. His response was along the lines of: “Marrying the healthiest person in the world doesn’t remove the possibility that she could become

sick or be in a horrible accident and need someone to care for her — people are in accidents or diagnosed with illnesses every day.” It warmed my heart that he stuck up for our relationship in the face of those who felt I would be a burden. While I’m grateful he didn’t listen to these people, when he shared some of the comments with me years later, it made me realize that chronic illness can easily unravel certain aspects of life if you don’t have safeguards in place.

And while people’s shocking comments or ill-intentioned advice is just one area you have to be prepared to battle when you are ill, the opposition won’t just stop there. If you are like me — you have a chronic illness and are in a relationship — there will undoubtedly be other challenging times. To help you face these challenges and keep your partnership strong, here are a few pieces of advice that have made a positive difference: • Therapy can be your most valuable incredible tool: Healthy communication in a relationship can be a challenge for anyone, whether you have an illness or not. Working with a neutral party (your therapist) can help you and your partner learn how to work together to communicate well. Therapy in the face of relationships and chronic illness can help you to strengthen your bond to one another, and make you realize you are on the same team and need to face life’s challenges together when life throws a “doozie.” Individual therapy can also be a great option; for instance, if your partner is having a difficult time adjusting to your chronic illness diagnosis, it can be very helpful for him or her to have a neutral person to whom they can express their feelings and concerns. And don’t give up if you don’t find a therapist who is a great fit on the first try. It may take a few times to locate the ideal counselor who works well with both you and your partner. • Accept help from those who offer it: One

{ THE LUPUS CHICK } “Marrying the healthiest person in the world doesn’t remove the possibility that she could become sick or be in a horrible accident and need someone to care for her.”



{ THE LUPUS CHICK } “So how can couples build a solid foundation and work together to make the most out of life despite an illness? ”

a water soluble that’s quicker acting, use a tincture if you need something that’s longer acting or use the beauty products such as our Collagen Cream which has CBD and Vitamin E in which both carry the anti- inflammatory properties. Your CBD Store is designed to create a warm and inviting environment where consumers can feel comfortable speaking with trained sales associates about their needs. Staff will sit with each customer and discuss an individualized wellness solution. Our goal is not to be just one more CBD store. We really strive to make a difference and improve lives. We are 336


passionate about the power of CBD and believe most people can benefit from using it if they understand exactly what it is and how it can help their body heal. Using high-quality, organic ingredients and providing easy access to the lab reports differentiates Your CBD Store’s products from other stores like gas stations, grocery stores, and vape shops selling CBD.

For complete information, visit To learn more about how CBD can assist you or please call the store at (585) 978-7441. Your CBD Store is located at 1971 E. Ridge Rd, Irondequoit, NY 14622 in the Great Win Plaza.

We’re the industry-leading and most reputable brand in the CBD industry. Not only are we committed to providing safe, quality products, but we are trained to answer questions and provide expert guidance for our clients and always recommending they have a conservation with their medical provider.

These products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Consult your physician before use. Must be 18 or older or accompanied by an adult.

Your CBD Stores have one primary mission — to educate.






I considered writing a column about the holiday blues because, let’s face it, we all have them. Gift buying or no gift buying, romance or no romance, tree or no tree, there are a lot of choices that can add to the overwhelm in our already busy lives.

supports a cause. You may have everyone bring in their favorite photos and show them how to transform them into holiday cards. Then send them to prisoners or hospitals. Offer inspirational sayings of health and bright futures.

Instead, let’s talk about possibilities! Let’s get inspired.

INSPIRATION #5 Share the wealth. There’s nothing more satisfying than knowing that you can help someone less fortunate than you by offering a financial gift. Remember the saying ‘As

INSPIRATION #1 Dream. Dare to dream about the places you never thought you’d see. Whether it’s a quick getaway to an island, a trip around the world, or a month in a foreign land, dream BIG about the places you’d like to go. INSPIRATION #2 Make a difference. Everyone knows that there is plenty of room in the world to make a contribution. Make yours unique. Let it have meaning to you. Let it not only touch the heart of others but awaken your own. Need an idea? Host a meal for a group who may not have family. Volunteer at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen. Make handmade gifts for nonprofit organizations serving those in need. Sing at a benefit concert! Allow your unique gifts to be shared. INSPIRATION #3 Bake cookies - but don’t eat them all. Baking can be a healing gesture in the home as long as it’s shared. Children love baking! The aroma wafting through the kitchen into all the rooms of the house brings a nurtured vibe. It is sometimes what makes a house a home. Decorate them using themes. Then pass them out to neighbors, friends, and colleagues. You can even make them healthy! INSPIRATION #4 Host a holiday party. Offer an activity that 338


WHERE TO START All of these make you feel better. And they definitely make those whom you are serving feel better. Why wait? Here are some connections to set your ideas into action: TRAVEL Google ‘Travel’ or ‘Cheap Travel’. You’ll receive options that will likely have something that both resonates with your soul and your pocketbook. Try one of these. HELP THE HOMELESS Contact one of these agencies and ask how you can assist. Rochester Area Interfaith Hospitality Network 585-506-9050 Open Door Mission Samaritan House 585-423-1825

you give, so shall you receive.’ It’s true. It doesn’t matter the size of the gift. It could be dropping coins into the Salvation Army bucket, giving $2 - $5 at the checkout of your grocery shopping, or mailing in a contribution to a charity. INSPIRATION #6 Meet a friend for a cup of tea, coffee or cocoa at a local cafe. Dine with friends and family at a family owned restaurant. Go window shopping at boutique stores. Get your nails done with friends. All these will bring you and your friends joy while supporting your local business owners.

House of Mercy 585-546-2580 Volunteers of America 585-454-1151 YWCA 585-546-5820 SING! Share your voice at a benefit concert or chorale your own group and bring music to your neighborhood. Contact your local church to inquire about singing opportunities or try one of these:

Rochester Women’s Community Chorus 585-234-4441 Taiwanese Choral Society of Rochester 585-326-1047 Concentus Women’s Chorus 585-586-5677 BAKE COOKIES Maybe you’ve collected a book of recipes from your favorite aunt. If not, it’s never too late. Here are a few places to find fun & tasty recipes, as well. SEND CARDS Offer Inspiration to someone being hospitalized. Get a listing of those serving time at a local jail or prison. Then send them holiday greetings filled with inspiration! Monroe County Jail 130 Plymouth Ave. South Rochester, NY 14614 Monroe County Correctional Facility 750 East Henrietta Road Rochester, New York 14623 Strong Memorial Hospital 340


- or Golisano Children’s Hospital 601 Elmwood Ave Rochester, NY 14642 Highland Hospital 1000 South Ave Rochester, NY 14620 Rochester General Hospital 1425 Portland Ave Rochester, NY 14621 GIVE DONATIONS Entrances to grocery stores and shopping malls usually have someone dressed as Santa ringing a bell, carrying a bucket, hoping you will drop a few coins into. Here are a few charities that you can send bigger sums to. Providing services and beds to women and their children surviving domestic abuse Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester offering free programs and events to cancer patients, survivors, and their families Helping people in recovery from drugs and alcohol to get fit using exercise, yoga & meditation Providing clean water to places where there is lack of sanitation Offering food and food shelters to the hungry A place to connect parents with children in need of a family Teaching children how to play music Providing sexual healthcare services to all Supporting those who have served us in national security Creating a supportive community for homosexual orientation Rochester Children’s Scholarship Fund providing financial support to qualified RCSD high school students EAT, DRINK & WINDOW SHOP! Here are a few places you can explore in the city. • Enjoy Park Ave’s winter shopping & dining festivities • Stop by Coffee Connections in the South Wedge • Pick up unique gifts on Monroe Ave • Have fun in the winding halls of Village Gate

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I remember reading what to expect when you’re expecting, learning about the newborn. Then there were all the toddlers how to books, and how to be ready to send them off to school. Being engulfed by that big yellow monster, waving as they seek your face before they are gone around the corner. All set with new fast sneakers, a name tag with their address so they don’t get lost, and a fresh haircut. Ready to meet a new best friend. I’ve never come across the rules or expectations or what to expect when you have teenagers book. I mean maybe it’s out there, but I haven’t seen it. I’m consumed in the needs of rides here, can you bring this item I left home to schools there, and the last minute trips on a drop of a dime’s notice to save a teenager from a disaster. Life with teenagers is like living in the eye of a storm. It’s much like clapping with one hand sometimes, because even though your excited and celebrating, the teenager has already left the building. Mood swings are the norm. A teenage girl can go from laughing to crying in .05 seconds, and be in full on rage. Rage that we have no clue where it emerged from, maybe the dog chewed her favorite shorts, or the ice tea is empty. It doesn’t matter how insignificant the actual situation is, watch out because if you laugh and shrug it off you are now the mortal enemy of life. A day jam packed at school warrants a discussion with you at home that may last all of six seconds. Letting you know that nothing happened and they have no homework. From this description it’s like your teenager goes to school and is in the vast wastelands of 346


nothingness. Even if you know a three ring circus showed up at school, your still going to hear that nothing happened. There will be dinners you make for no one, because they already ate or don’t have time. They will ask you what’s for dinner at 10PM when they make it home safe from work, or dance, or a friends house. The dishes will be cleaned, dinner all tucked away safe in Tupperware containers, yet you get up to make sure your child doesn’t go to bed hungry. You try your best to create a dialogue to squeeze in some quality time.

All the while they ask you if that’s all you have for them to eat, hours after dinner was served. Then saunter upstairs, away from you and you attempt to feel needed. There will be enough recycable empties collected in their bedroom as if they have created a one man donation center for the less fortunate. Only they have no intent of ever picking them up to return them. Not even admitting they exist. Or they aren’t theirs, yet the friends who spent the night days ago. You will wait, a lot. You may find you have the patience of a saint or you may pass the point of insanity because

of the amount of time you spend waiting. Waiting for an answer, waiting in a car for the emergence of the face that belongs to the teenager who needs you to take them home. Waiting as they take a test, and pass. You will wait for your child and you can learn to meditate, you may educate yourself with literature, or you might even talk to the voices inside your head, but you will wait. This isn’t something that’s appreciated, it’s an expectation of the years you spent keeping them from dangers. You kept them alive all these years, and so now it is your duty to wait. And so we do, and we sit and wait and greet our teenager with a smile and how was your day? The response is the usual grunts and mutterings of the starved overworked exhausted teenager. Who did nothing all day. There will be missing items, that you know you left in specific places. They are gone now to the Abyss of a teenager who’s needs outweigh yours for the item, and so it is now somewhere in the place the teenager dwells. Hidden beneath clean clothes, dirty clothes, a best friends clothes who spent the night weeks ago. It’s there somewhere, yet now you must go purchase a new one for the teenager can’t recall even taking it. Not until you arrive home. New item in hand, do they all of a sudden remember where the original one is. And so they may as well keep it, as mom doesn’t need two of them. Items of necessity are no longer sacred yet up for grabs in the ever stressful needs of the teenager. Also, understand that any plans you make can and will be destroyed. Plan on your plans taking a backseat because teenagers need to be at the opening showtime of the newest movie, or mom you knew we planned this trip to the mall weeks ago. But they really didn’t, they sat up way past the time they




{{ SHIFT+CONTROL KARMA SPEAKS }} “ They are gone now to the Abyss of a teenager who’s needs outweigh yours for the item, and so it is now somewhere in the place the teenager dwells.”

good, to smile at a stranger, and look up and let the sun kiss your face. He told me it wasn’t per chance, we are both kindred souls. I was meant to be on his path. I couldn’t agree more, as he left and said the words I spoke came straight from his heart. And I felt this to be true. I watched the other trucks get ready for service, they didn’t meet Lee or hear the woman go by on her phone tell the recipient “I love you” as she hurried off to work. Or even see the city worker who I smiled at, nor did they know that at that moment I 348


received a text that said thank you Karma, for being you, please don’t ever stop. I didn’t respond all day, as lunch service started and the heat wave brings out the hunger. It wasn’t until later that we spoke again. This time it wasn’t in the group, yet one on one. You see my friend just had his legs removed, and is rehabilitating at the hospital, inside looking out. He wanted me to know that his lack of response doesn’t want to provoke me from not texting, or visiting or sharing. We spoke about words and the gift

of script and if I can reach someone with words “when they need it the most” potentially I may not even be there to see that. That’s the thing, I don’t need to be .. as long as they have reached you, when you need them the most. If my time away from the sun, means that one day you remember my words, and you find a reason to smile, I don’t need to see it, as I too, will be smiling at the sun.



Decide on what type of holiday look you want to go for. Make a stronger lip or an eye the focal point of your makeup, and go easy on the rest. If you wear a bold, dark deep or bright lip, then you don’t need much eye makeup. Go for a red, berry or rosy pink lipstick with low-key neutral eyes or switch things around and do smoky lined lids with a soft neutral lip. Doing a full face with both strong eyes and lips looks overdone. You can always go back and forth do and play up eyes one day and lips the next.

and then start your makeup. If you are going out for the evening and want to redo one step from your morning makeup application, make it the foundation. You can retouch the eyes and lips easily. setting with a translucent powder or loose powder will help to achieve a luminous look!



LIPS: If you’re going for a bold Smokey eye then keep the lips light and neutral. If you’re keeping your eyes light then go for a bold lip! Add a little extra festive touch with a sparkly lip topper! BLUSH: Always add blush! If you’re going for a bold lip, use a light subtle pinkish shade. If you’re looking to add a little extra glow use a coral shade, it’s very flattering on any skin type!

EYESHADOW: warmer shades for cool eyes, such as blue, gray or green, and cooler shades for warm brown or hazel eyes. The contrast works to bring out your eye color, and no matter how much you smoke up the lids or frame the eyes, they never look overdone. Choose palettes with a mix of light to dark shades and a variety of textures, including matte, satin and shimmery mix. FOUNDATION: Keep face makeup glowy and radiant. Choose a foundation, color-correcting cream or tinted moisturizer that gives you fresher, healthier looking skin. Going a little more sheer and luminous looks more appealing than a full coverage foundation and powder. For the dewiest look, wash your face and prep skin with a facial mask for 10 minutes prior to applying makeup. Gently massage on the moisturizer, let it sink in a few minutes

to really make your eyes look bigger and stronger. And start at the very roots so there are no gaps between mascara and the upper inner rims. Roll the brush up in a wiggling back-and-forth movement to saturate lashes.

C O N T O U R & HIGHLIGHT: Contour and highlighter are the perfect finishing touch for any holiday party and event! For contouring use a contour brush and sweep along the outer areas of the face. For highlight take a small detail brush and sweep along cheek bones, nose and cupid’s bow.

LASHES: Curl your lashes to open your eyes and to counteract sag. Use a curler with good spring-cushioned pads and a wide shape to prevent crimping, and curl before you add mascara. To apply, front-load your mascara — depositing more at the roots of the lashes, not the tips, in a black shade

With these tips you’ll be rocking this holiday season! There’s so many different combinations to choose from! Last but not least, always be sure to color coordinate with your outfit and accessories! Emily Marie Pangburn Owner of Makeup Artistry & Beauty








During my 16 years with the Alzheimer’s Association, I have found that one of the most exciting times of the year for our caregiving families is the holiday season. As families gather to celebrate their faith and family traditions, enjoy a meal together, or exchange presents, their time together can be filled with laughter, joy, and meaningful moments. But, this time of year can also be one of the most challenging as well, bringing with it stress, disappointment, and even sadness. The person living with Alzheimer’s or dementia may feel a special sense of loss because of the changes he or she has experienced. At the same time, caregivers may feel overwhelmed maintaining their family traditions while providing care to their loved ones. In the early stages, a person with Alzheimer’s or another dementia may experience minor changes. Some may withdraw and become uncomfortable in social settings, while others may relish seeing family and friends. The key for family members is to check in with each other and discuss possible options. Asking how the primary caregiver is coping may be appreciated. Plan the holidays together, focusing on the things that bring happiness and letting go of activities that may seem overwhelming or stressful. As the person living with Alzheimer’s or another dementia progresses into the moderate stages of the disease, we recommend that families consider rethinking their holiday plans. Every family is unique and finding a plan that works for your loved 352


one may involve trial and error. Here are some tips for reducing holiday stress for those living with Alzheimer’s and dementia and those who care about them: ● Make sure others know. The holidays are full of emotions, so let guests know what to expect before they arrive and tell them how they can help. For example, recommend activities that they can do with the person living with dementia and share tips on how best to communicate

● Involve the person with Alzheimer’s dementia. Involve the person in safe, manageable holiday preparation activities that he or she enjoys. Ask them to help prepare food, wrap packages, help decorate or set the table. Avoid using candies, artificial fruits and vegetables as decorations because a person with dementia might confuse them with real food. Blinking lights may also cause confusion. ● Plan ahead. When attending a holiday party, prepare the host for special needs, such as a quiet room for the person to rest when they get tired, away from the noise and distractions. ● Adjust expectations. Call a faceto-face meeting or arrange for a group discussion via telephone, video chat or email for family and friends to discuss holiday celebrations. Make sure that everyone understands the situation and has realistic expectations about what the individual can and cannot do.

with them. Simultaneous conversations can be challenging for people living with Alzheimer’s or another dementia – try engaging them one-on-one, in a quiet part of the house. ● Build on traditions and memories. Take time to experiment with new traditions that might be less stressful or a better fit with caregiver responsibilities, such as watching seasonal movies. For example, if evening confusion and agitation are a problem, turn a holiday dinner into a holiday lunch.

● Let others contribute. Host a potluck dinner or ask others to host one in their home. Consider breaking large gatherings up into smaller visits of two or three people at a time to keep the person with Alzheimer’s dementia from getting overtired. ● Adapt gift giving. Provide people with suggestions for useful, safe and enjoyable gifts for the person such as an identification bracelet available through the Alzheimer’s Association; comfortable, easy-to-remove clothing; CDs of favorite music; or favorite foods and photo albums of family and friends. If friends or family members ask, suggest a gift certificate or something that will help make things easier, like house cleaning, lawn or handyman services,




{ PARTNERS IN A JOURNEY } “A holiday is still a holiday whether it is celebrated at home or within a residential community.“

aundry services, restaurant gift cards or even volunteer to visit with the person for an afternoon so that the caregiver can have some time off. ● Do a variation on a theme. If evening confusion and agitation are a problem, consider changing a holiday dinner into a holiday lunch or brunch. If you do keep the celebration at night, keep the room well-lit and try to avoid any known triggers. ● Maintain a normal routine. Sticking to the person’s normal routine will help keep the holidays from becoming disruptive or confusing. Plan time for breaks and rest.



When your loved one lives in a residential community A holiday is still a holiday whether it is celebrated at home or within a residential community. Here are some ways to celebrate together: ● Consider joining your loved one in any facility-planned holiday activities ● Bring a favorite holiday food to share ● Sing holiday songs and ask if other residents can join in ● Read a favorite holiday story or poem out loud Looking ahead to the holiday season,

my hope is that families will keep our phone number handy. Our team of social workers is available around the clock to answer questions, provide support, and offer suggestions to make this season as joy-filled as possible. Please know that you are not alone. The Alzheimer’s Association is walking the journey with you and we want you to know that we care. Please call us at 1.800.272.3900 or visit us on the at No matter when you call, you will hear a friendly voice on the other end who can help you. My best wishes for a joyful holiday season.

If you care for someone with memory loss or dementia, you are not alone. We are here to offer support and education. Set up a free care consultation today. Finger Lakes Alzheimerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Caregiver Institute

For office locations and hours in your county, call 800.272.3900 This program is funded, in part, by a grant from the New York State Department of Health.


HELPING YOU ACHIEVE YOUR BEST SELF Mental health care is healthcare. Seeing a therapist is part of an overall healthy lifestyle. • Jennifer utilizes her training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), and EMDR to meet each client’s individual needs.

• Problems caused by your loved one’s substance use disorder: sleep disturbance, worry, anger, fear, physical ailments from stress, strained relationships, lost work productivity, and on and on.

Thriving Therapy, PLLC is accepting new clients; appointments available within two weeks. Jennifer is seeing clients age 7 and older, couples, and families.

• Part of managing mental health symptoms is taking care of your whole body. Jennifer is a Certified Mental Health Integrated Medicine Provider. In the scope of her practice that means that she can work with you to make nutritional and supplemental changes that support mental health. If alcohol or drug use is causing difficulty in your life, or if you love someone who’s use is worrying you, let Jennifer help! • Problems caused by substance use disorder: guilt, shame, strained relationships, lost jobs, criminal justice involvement, eviction, depression, anxiety, and on and on.

can be uncomfortable, scary, and sometimes a windy journey. However, change can also be growth, empowerment, and healing. Participating in therapy is one way of seeking the necessary changes to feel at peace with your life. No matter your age, change is possible and you deserve it.

Schedule directly f r o m w w w. or contact Jennifer at (585) 371-8355

Family and couples therapy often means looking at issues around boundaries, patterns of communication, the ‘roles’ people have and family rules. Families and couples often find the work to be challenging - but also rewarding and even, at times, fun! Are you ready to change? Change

Follow Thriving Therapy, PLLC on facebook @ thrivingtherapy, and on Instagram @ thrivingtherapypllc. Or email her at or



We’re currently in the month of November, during which we always celebrate Thanksgiving. Consequently, I’ve decided to devote this month’s column to the topic of gratitude. The dictionary defines gratitude as the quality of being thankful, as well as a readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. However, I wonder how many of us, on a regular basis, really exhibit these characteristics of gratitude in our daily lives? All too easily, we may find ourselves living in the past, as opposed to being grateful for what we have in our lives currently. Just as easily, we may find ourselves postponing our gratitude for the things that we hope will take place in our lives in the future. I’m continuing to deal with multiple chronic illnesses in my life. I have learned, firsthand, the difference that cultivating an attitude of gratitude truly makes. At various times during the past several decades, I have experienced devastating effects of my chronic medical diagnoses, including blindness, paralysis, incontinence, and severe airway obstruction. Experiencing such significant types of symptoms really helped me to cut to the chase of what truly matters in life. Simply put, I powerfully learned to 358


no longer sweat the small stuff. I was forced to look at my life from a very different perspective; I began to cultivate deep gratitude for those abilities which remained, as opposed to continuing to mourn those abilities that had been lost. Unquestionably, this entire process was made a lot easier by having abilities that were temporarily, as opposed to permanently lost. Nevertheless, having lost such valued abilities to see, hear,

for my many blessings. As painful as my experiences of being seriously ill have been, on multiple occasions, I would never wish them to have never taken place. I have been forced to learn how to live more fully in the present, as opposed to either the past or the future. I’ve learned to pay closer attention to small, daily blessings, as opposed to always thinking that a major transition or accomplishment in my life would guarantee true happiness. I strongly believe that one of the major reasons why I have been allowed to experience such intense suffering is so that I could assist others who are also struggling. Working as a clinical health psychologist has afforded me the opportunity to witness, up close and personal, a great deal of suffering. I see clients who are struggling with both physical and emotional disorders.

walk, and simply breathe powerfully changed who I am. If I was ever going to cope more adequately with the card of hands I’d been dealt, I needed to radically alter my perspective. Prior to experiencing such dramatic health disturbances, I had been guilty of thinking of those very things that I thought were still missing from my daily life, as opposed to being truly grateful

Because I have personally struggled with both types of issues myself, I am much more compassionate in responding empathetically to my clients. Responding to their suffering has ceased to be a dry, academic exercise. When such clients appear to not be fully convinced that I truly understand the struggles they are facing, I retain the option to gently disclose my own personal struggles. This has profoundly impacted the therapeutic connection that I’m able

{ MENTALLY THINKING } “I strongly believe that one of the major reasons why I have been allowed to experience such intense suffering is so that I could assist others who are also struggling.”



{ {RWO’S MENTALLY MENTAL THINKING HEALTH} } “ I’d like to think that expressing gratitude on a regular basis has positively impacted how I interact with others each day.”

This season of thanksgiving, I challenge you to also develop an attitude of gratitude. Begin to slowly stop to appreciate your many blessings each day. Initially, this very exercise might feel foreign, since many of us are deeply accustomed to thinking about what is wrong with our everyday lives. Believe me, developing a more grateful attitude is possible over time. Like any other skill, it needs to be practiced on a regular basis in order to become second nature. Each day throughout November, I intentionally list one thing for which I am grateful, via Facebook. I have 360


found that engaging in this exercise helps me to increasingly count my many blessings, no matter how trivial they might appear to others. I find that I’ve also begun to feel much happier as a result of expressing gratitude. Everyday irritations no longer seem to both me as much, too. I’d like to think that expressing gratitude on a regular basis has positively impacted how I interact with others each day. I think that learning to cultivate gratitude has allowed me to become less irritated by the insensitivity of others. I’m much more likely to interpret their responses as

a reflection of distressing events in their lives, as opposed to somehow being a personal reflection of who I happen to be. This November, I challenge you to also develop increased gratitude. Promise me, it will powerfully impact multiple aspects of your daily life. You’ll have greater peace of mind, too.



Recently I was taking some down time scrolling around Netflix, Hulu and such. In my drowsy state I looking for a repeat movie experience and I came across the Green Lantern movie. This movie was not too intense, I could watch it with minimal attention, and was not too long. It was just right. In my sleepy state of watching the movie it focused on will. Will was what overcame fear. The desire to overcome something, to want something, to choose something. Let’s talk about will.

According to McGonigal in an article in Scope “psychologists have found that willpower is a lot like stress: It’s not just a psychological experience, but a fullblown mind-body response. The stress response is a reaction to an external threat, for example a fire alarm going off. In contrast, the willpower response is a reaction to an internal conflict. You want to do one thing, such as smoke a cigarette or supersize your lunch, but know you shouldn’t. Or you know you

Willpower is all the about the determination and strength of will to pursue ones dreams, goals, desires. It’s about when the going gets tough, the tough keep going. Will is that steady voice that says keep it at, don’t give up, you’ve got it. Our will believes in our capabilities even when we are uncertain. WILL IS TOUGH STUFF A 2011 Stress in America sur vey reported the GREATEST obstacle to change was willpower. Yep willpower. “The Willpower Instinct” authored by Kelly McGonigal a Stanford University Psychologist based upon her course “The Science of Willpower”. Willpower according to McGonigal is comprised of three things: • I won’t power • I will power; • I want power (remembering what you really want)



should do something, like file your taxes or go to the gym, but you’d rather do nothing. The need for self-control sets into motion a coordinated set of changes in the brain and body that help you resist temptation and override self-destructive urges. It’s called the pause-and-plan response and it puts your body into a calmer state, unlike the adrenaline rush of stress. It also sends extra energy to the brain’s

prefrontal cortex, which keeps track of your goals and helps you override impulses and cravings. The result is you have the mindset and motivation to do what matters most”. So how do we tap into our will plus power to get our willpower? What steps and actions can we take? Think of it this way. In order to have your will about something become your super willpower begin with looking at your goals. Begin with picking one or two things about your life you want to accomplish. Plan (yes plan) on how you will achieve your goals. Be thoughtful and realistic about how to go about making a change. Think about the steps you will take. Plan for when your self-control/will is feeling weak as this will happen for what you will do. Plan for the expectation that will you NOT 100% of the time work towards your goal. You will slip, you will waiver. Expect that to occur. This does not mean you give up on what you are working towards. It means what that does happen you get back up, dust yourself off, and keep working towards your goal. When the Green Lantern was battling Parallax, who was all about consuming people because Parallax smelled their fear, the Green Lantern kept repeating his pledge. Was the Green Lantern afraid? Yes! What he used to overcome his fear was his will, his oath, his pledge

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Willpower is all the about the determination and strength of will to pursue ones dreams, goals, desires.â&#x20AC;?

{ YOU MATTER } “Will was what overcame fear. The desire to overcome something, to want something, to choose something.”

In brightest day, in blackest night, No evil shall escape my sight Let those who worship evil’s might, Beware my power… Green Lantern’s light! What is your oath, pledge, vow to yourself? What are the things you want to accomplish to achieve your goals, dreams, desires? Will it require changes in how you live your life, how you do things? Of course. Will you have to improve on your self-control, discipline, 364


when fear, temptations arise? Yes. Take actions to make you proud of yourself. Work towards your goals that you believe you can accomplish no matter what anyone else says. Along my life on quite a few goals I have had a number of people who cared about me questioning my decisions, my quests, my goals. I knew I could achieve them. I needed to distance myself from their fears, doubts and continue to take steps towards what I knew I wanted to do and could do. This anonymous quote says it all:

“Willpower is like a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it gets” Amazing person you can do this. Everyone is born with willpower. Everyone. Even if you think you do not have it you do! You can tap into your will plus power to work towards your goals, dreams, desires. Make a plan, take an action, when you backslide get up and keep on going. You are so deserving and so capable of whatever it is you want to achieve. May your will be with you!



Permanent Makeup/Microblading, Lash/Laser Provider Samantha has over 15 years’ experience in Cosmetology. She is a Permanent Makeup/Microblading Artist with training by World Microblading and Advanced Training Certified with PMU by Anna. She is also certified in lasers & eyelash extensions. 366


Her expertise is in Microblading, Lash Extensions and VelaShape lll (body contouring). Clients love her kind compassionate heart and amazing spirit. We think she is pretty special too!

Favorite Procedure- Microblading

Helping people brings her joy and taking care of her three girls’ ages, thirteen, ten and seven, her dog, Gucci and bird, Sunny. Sam loves to cook and entertain.

Favorite Pet- Dog

Favorite Product- Glenna’s CBD Best Oil, Best Triple Healing Salve Favorite food- Lebanese food

Favorite saying- “ To be, or not to be”







People with gum disease (periodontitis) have a greater likelihood of high blood pressure (hypertension), according to a study published today in Cardiovascular Research, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC). Senior author Professor Francesco D’Aiuto of UCL Eastman Dental Institute, UK, said: “We observed a linear association -- the more severe periodontitis is, the higher the probability of hypertension. The findings suggest that patients with gum disease should be informed of their risk and given advice on lifestyle changes to prevent high blood pressure such as exercise and a healthy diet.”

from 26 countries were included in the meta-analysis. Moderate-to-severe periodontitis was associated with a 22% raised risk for hypertension, while severe periodontitis was linked with 49% higher odds of hypertension. Lead author Dr Eva Munoz Aguilera of UCL Eastman Dental Institute said: “We observed a positive linear relationship, with the hazard of high blood pressure rising as gum disease became more severe.”

This study compiled the best available evidence to examine the odds of high blood pressure in patients with moderate and severe gum disease. A total of 81 studies 368


Professor D’Aiuto said: “There seems to be a continuum between oral health and blood pressure which exists in healthy and diseased states. The evidence suggesting periodontal therapy could reduce blood pressure remains inconclusive. In nearly all intervention studies, blood pressure was not the primary outcome. Randomised trials are needed to determine the impact of periodontal therapy on blood pressure.” Regarding potential reasons for the connection between the conditions, gum disease and the associated oral bacteria lead to inflammation throughout the body, which affects blood vessel function. Common genetic susceptibility could also play a role, along with shared risk factors such as smoking and obesity.

High blood pressure affects 30-45% of adults and is the leading global cause of premature death, while periodontitis affects more than 50% of the world’s population. Hypertension is the main preventable cause of cardiovascular disease, and periodontitis has been linked with increased risk of heart attack and stroke. “Hypertension could be the driver of heart attack and stroke in patients with periodontitis,” said Professor D’Aiuto. “Previous research suggests a connection between periodontitis and hypertension and that dental treatment might improve blood pressure, but to date the findings are inconclusive.”

in blood pressure following gum treatment. The changes occurred even in people with healthy blood pressure levels.

Average arterial blood pressure was higher in patients with periodontitis compared to those without. This amounted to 4.5 mmHg higher systolic and 2 mmHg higher diastolic blood pressures. “The differences are not negligible,” said Dr Munoz Aguilera. “An average 5 mmHg blood pressure rise would be linked to a 25% increased risk of death from heart attack or stroke.” Just 5 out of 12 interventional studies included in the review showed a reduction

Professor D’Aiuto said: “In many countries throughout the world, oral health is not checked regularly, and gum disease remains untreated for many years. The hypothesis is that this situation of oral and systemic inflammation and response to bacteria accumulates on top of existing risk factors.” He noted that the study investigated gum disease as a potential risk factor for hypertension, but the reverse could also be true. “Further research is needed to examine whether patients with high blood pressure have a raised likelihood of gum disease. It seems prudent to provide oral health advice to those with hypertension,” he said.



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The Merriam-Webster’s definition of a Narcissist says this: “a personality disorder characterized especially by an exaggerated sense of self-importance, persistent need for admiration , lack of empathy for others, excessive pride in achievements, and snobbish, disdainful, or patronizing attitudes.’ Sounds great right!? If you run into someone like that, you’ll know what to look for, right? WRONG!!!!!

they’re so slick at hiding it and telling you that you’re delusional, that you just keep it to yourself. There was a time you could make even the hardest decisions or choices without any hesitation and now you can’t even make decisions or choices for even the simplest things. When you do actually make that decision or choice, you’re struggling, wondering if you’ve made the right choice or decision.

We can observe them when we are on the outside looking in like, when we hear about a family suicide where the husband/wife kills the other and their kids, or the woman/man who was beaten by their significant other. Or the killings going on in our schools. All you have to do is turn on the news!

Once confident and secure, you find yourself looking in the mirror and having no idea

The issue is when you’re IN the situation, up close and personal. It’s not gonna happen to me, you think, because you’re smarter than that! You would NEVER be in a relationship with someone like that you tell yourself!!!! Yet so many of us do end up in a relationship just like that. Some to that extreme of physical violence and for some, they may end up with someone who strips you of your worth. Think about this, have you ever had a relationship with someone who made you feel bad? Less worthy? Guilty? Put you down for being a better you? You did everything they wanted you to do but it was never enough? Always criticizing you or even others? Do you or have you found yourself questioning yourself all the time? Are you wondering if they’re cheating? The majority of the time you’re gut is right but 374


who the person is, looking back. You feel like a failure and wonder if you’ll ever get back to that person you were and how could you let yourself get to that point? I’m here to help you. There is hope! You will not only rediscover yourself BUT you’ll come back even stronger and MORE confident than ever before. It’s ALL up to you and how badly you want it! How are YOU going to help, you ask? What do you know about it? I can only give you wisdom in what helped me because I’ve been through it a few times. What saved me and how did I do it? GOD and DETERMINATION! I was not EVER

going to put myself in that position again no matter how much I loved that person. Who am I talking about? I’m talking about TOXIC people also called narcissists. They come in all shapes, sizes, races, from young to old. They can be parents, relatives, boyfriends, girlfriends, friends, kids, husbands and wives, people at your job or people in the church. The list is limitless. It doesn’t matter. The ONLY thing that you MUST take into account is HOW THEY MAKE YOU FEEL!!!!! If it’s ANY of the above that I mentioned then there’s no question. You NEED to get out! Escape as fast as you can! LIMIT your dealings with them especially if it’s someone close. UNDERSTAND that, narcissists are drawn to kindhearted people AND that they have a need to CONTROL. This is a game to them. Every move they make is calculated. You don’t think so because everything flows so smoothly that it’s undetected. They are funny, social and very charming. You’re a piece in the game of chess, to them. They are really good at it too! To them, they mistake kindness for weakness so they play on that. In relationships, whether friendship or romantic, they start out being nice, bombarding you with compliments and making you feel good about yourself! They say ALL the right things. They study your words, your moves and they ‘work’ off of that so you end up thinking that they’re likeminded like you! You’re on cloud nine now with the new friendship or relationship. Until more time passes. Then they find

{ A WOMAN’S PERSPECTIVE } “A personality disorder characterized especially by an exaggerated sense of selfimportance, persistent need for admiration , lack of empathy for others, excessive pride in achievements, and snobbish, disdainful, or patronizing attitudes.”



stupid little things to pick on. The laugh they once loved, for example, they now find annoying. It gets increasingly worse but they will throw in a compliment or two just to throw you off. Some may find the need to control who you spend time with eventually making you be without any one while they go wherever they want. They may even ‘force’ you to have a baby to keep you confined and limited to activities. Nothing you do is right. They go out while you’re stuck home. Your gut tells you they’re cheating even when the evidence is there! Yet they will tell you that you’re insecure. Or they may get lovey dovey with you to distract you, even behaving for a while until you forget about it. Telling you you’re insecure is their famous line for anything when you question them. BIG MISTAKES: So, so far, I have a few 376


signs for you to look for. Let’s go over them: 1. They bombard you with compliments, especially in the beginning of the relationship whether friendship or romantic. 2. After a while, they start to criticize or get annoyed very easily with you. Things they thought were cute are the very things they hate. 3. They start to put you down. 4. They act like they’re the victim. 5. They don’t celebrate any accomplishments you may have. 6. Nothing you do is right. They ALWAYS have something negative to say. 7. Boundaries are crossed. They’re talking to girls/guys on messenger and complimenting them in inappropriate ways. I could go on but the BIGGEST thing is, HOW they make you feel. PLEASE don’t say in your head, ‘There’s no way they’re like that’. Or, ‘It’s ok, they just weren’t feeling well or they were in a bad mood - after they just smacked the daylights

out of you - it won’t happen again or they just don’t like when I hang out with my mom because he/she is afraid they will take me away from him/her. The minute you see any of these signs, KEEP YOUR EYES WIDE OPEN!!!! Don’t make excuses! Don’t compromise either. Stand up for yourself. Get the hell out while you still love yourself! When someone continually disrespects you, in ANY WAY and even tells jokes at your expense AND there’s NO change in their behavior, it’s time to walk away, or in some cases, you may have to distance yourself! If you ever want to contact me, go to








Whether you are a seasoned shopper, complete newbie or somewhere in between, building a real, functional wardrobe can be a challenging task for anyone. We have put together some tips for the seasoned and some guidance for the uncertain to help you build a timeless wardrobe that will last for years. First, let’s talk about style. Your style is what makes you unique because it’s the way YOU like to dress and it’s a reflection of you. It’s what makes you feel beautiful and as a result, confident. Style in regards to your wardrobe should be a reflection of you. They should be pieces that you are 100% in love with. If you are unsure of your style, that’s ok. Take a few moments to think about what works best for your body type and styles, cuts, colors, fabrics that you tend to be drawn to. If you need inspiration, think about your favorite Influencer or Celebrity’s style. Now that you have a good idea of what your style is, let’s discuss wardrobe essentials. Wardrobe essentials are those core items you should have in your closet because

from these core pieces, you can create many different looks and outfits. The main reason you should invest in these pieces is because they are classics which mean they are timeless

limited amount each season to add for newness and fun. We have curated a classic capsule as a guide to help you build the perfect wardrobe: *Classic Bodysuit *White Blouse *Black Cardigan *Grey Sweater *Moto Jacket *Black Skirt *Camel Coat *Leggings *White Tee *Classic Jeans Note that these colors can be interchanged with black, grey, white & navy depending on your personal palette preference and style. Starting with these classic pieces, you can create endless outfit options especially when you add in your shoes. These are investment pieces so be sure to invest in quality, as they will last you years, even decades.

and will never go out of style. If you only buy trendy items, they soon go out of style, leaving you with dated clothing & a hole in your wallet. You do not have to completely give them up but instead just select a

Shop our Classic Glow collection on to build the perfect wardrobe that will have you glowing year after year.

{ GLOW FASHION } “ Starting with these classic pieces, you can create endless outfit options especially when you add in your shoes.”













5 WAY S Y O U ’ R E UNINTENTIONALLY SABOTAGING YOUR BUSINESS ON SOCIAL MEDIA Love it or hate it, social media is here and the masses are using it to make purchases and discover new brands. This indispensable tool can make or break your brand. Here are 5 ways you’re unintentionally are sabotaging your business on social media.

that you are a professional business you need to look polished & branded. It takes me a total of 60 seconds to peruse a person’s page to tell if they have a plan in action or if they simply post in a reactive and scattered way. They put in the multiple fonts, they steal other people’s posts, the posts are random and don’t have a cohesive look or feel.

1. You don’t keep up on the guidelines and rules. 2. You don’t plan out the entire month ahead of time. 3. You allow multiple people to post to your account. 4. You’re inconsistent with your branding. 5. You don’t engage enough with your audience 1. Every month Instagram, Facebook, and the like changes the rules. Most people do not keep up on this. Doing so can cause huge problems to your account. Did you know Instagram no longer allows third party apps that use your sign in info? Do you know that continuing to be signed into these accounts, even if it was months ago,may cause a shadowban to occur? This makes it near impossible to be seen by new viewers. It can also cause your account to be suspended and banned. So, keep your password safe and changing at least every few months, and find a person that will keep up on the changing rules. 2. In order to convey to your audience

They have a pattern, clear branding, a theme, a color palette, and it doesn’t change month to month. I look forward to their new posts, and I am intrigued and want to know more. 3. I get the desire to save money when you own your own business. I run 3 businesses- I know first hand about this. I also recognize the reality that you need to delegate in order to be successful. All successful entrepreneurs delegate in order to focus on their business and where their strengths are. Most people do not have the time or energy to do what is needed to shine and succeed on social media. I spend roughly 2 hours per client per day, this is why I delegate and hire people to do this work with me. When you allow those who aren’t trained in social media to run your accounts and post, it looks unprofessional. It looks like a teenager is running it. It looks like you aren’t a real company. If you want to use in house people on your staff to do this job, and do it well- pay for them to get proper training in it.

This is especially true of accounts that change up their theme constantly. You are conveying to the masses that you’re business is very disorganized and unprofessional. Let’s be honest, I don’t trust businesses that look this way. It feels like a fly by night operation, and it doesn’t build trust. It is also easy to find the accounts that are on their game, with a clear look, and message.

Then there are those that hire a social media manager for a short time and give up before there is a chance for consistency and momentum, hence disrupting the theme & brand. You need a good 6-12 months to create this, and to do this you need a consistent voice. 4. This goes hand in hand with reason 3! Your page should have a pattern. Your page should have a color palette. Your page should have a message. Your page when you look at it should be your lookbook. People may look at followers, ROCHESTER WOMAN ONLINE :: HOLIDAY EDITION 2019


{ SOCIALLY SPEAKING } “Love it or hate it, social media is here and the masses are using it to make purchases and discover new brands.“

people may look at engagement, but they definitely know in the course of a 30 second if they like the look of your page. That is the length of time you have to convince someone to follow you. To convince someone to engage with you. To convince someone to want to take the next step and make an appointment or purchase. You have only 30 seconds, so what do your potential customers see? Can you change the pattern? Sure but it needs to be in line with what you already have going. Again, this is where hiring a professional is key. 5. Why should people continue to follow 384


you? Does the person in charge of your social media respond to comments? Do they engage with your folllower’s account beyond the occasional like? Letting your followers know that you see them is important. It also reminds them that you’re there. It may be that extra nudge to take the next step with you. Social media is not a one way street, and with all things in life, you get what you give. Katie is a social media manager, graphic designing,soap making, herbalist, EFT practitioner who is passionate about helping others, permaculture, wellness, and her three children. She is currently

accepting 5 new social media clients. When you mention to her that you read this article in the new edition of Rochester Woman Online, and receive 2 months free when purchasing a social media management package. You can check out her website at: www.dreamcatchersocial. com or on Instagram @moonandstars_ wellness + @moonandstarsapothecary



Finding Peace for Ourselves & the World

or new way of being, tend to have long, sweeping motions that seem to show their happy anticipation.

In today’s fast-paced and demanding world, everyone wants and needs your attention. Have you ever wondered when you get to just pay attention to yourself and your own needs? I think I used to wonder that pretty much on the daily. I had no idea how creating space for myself would feel, let alone how to cultivate it. Luckily, I already had a connection to my creative side and tapped into that right brain Zen to carve out what only I could give myself; a mindfulness practice.

Each different circumstance or emotion has distinct ways of being conveyed. Observing the brush strokes, (and there are so many more types!), helps me to move that student through what their subconscious is trying to convey to them. I know that when I am

I have been so fortunate to not only be a creator for a living but also to teach this in my studio and through the Rochester Brainery. Intuitive creating and learning is a lifesaver for my students and my psyche. It is such a thrill to see students walk in stressed and fraught with anxious stories, so much so that they can, at times, be on the verge of tears before they even begin class. Allowing them a few moments to sit quietly, meditate or even breathe before beginning sets the tone for the class. That moment that you take for yourself to recall a moment of calm can be called up whenever you are feeling overwhelmed or anxious. It brings us back to the breath and our true north. How magical is that? Once in that space, I ask the students and you, the reader, to now picture the shapes and movement that each color brings up for you. Students then work to get that image on the canvas. I’m always fascinated by how different that is for each person. For those who are grieving or sad; the movement tends to feel like a staccato note; short and repetitive, in one direction. Those who are on the verge of giving birth to an idea 386


painting in this way, it really helps me to work through the simplest of thoughts, (i.e. What is my breath like in this moment? How can I be more positive about a current life circumstance?). It enables me to witness the observer, the thinker and the thought. Who is thinking this loop that’s about to drive me over the edge? It feels like there’s this noisy devil on your shoulder like in the Tom and Jerry cartoons and man, is he

persuasive! I can get caught in those for weeks at a time if I don’t create distance from it. Once I become the silent witness, (which has been much faster than a few years ago due to an ardent practice), I can see that they are just random thoughts created by our caveman fight or flight response that evolution hasn’t really caught up to yet. When creating, I will ask myself or my student what it is about their thought or fear that needs resolution so that they can move out of that looping? Feeling like you can have power in the choices you are making and creating for yourself can help move us forward in a way that heals our heart. Writing on the canvas or making shapes about the thoughts and new direction they’d like to take is really a moving experience. At times, it can take several classes to work through this portion of the creative process. Many emotions and feelings that we have been pushing down for decades can come to the surface in surprising and beautifully releasing ways. These emotions are valid and here for us to glean the lessons they are here to teach us. Once we do the work of resolving them, we get to move on to a new one with more wisdom, patience and compassion. Trust is also a huge part of intuitive/ mindfulness practices. Frequently, we can wish for certain outcomes but feel as though no one can hear us or that we are not capable enough to bring them to fruition. Recently, I knew I needed to pay for several student supplies and frames. As an artist, funds can be difficult to come by more often than we’d like. These were actual necessities, but I wasn’t sure I’d be able to afford them. So, I said a prayer that I somehow made just enough to pay for the amount I needed and let it go. This practice, for me, has




{ MANIFESTING YOUR TRUE PURPOSE } “Colors become more vibrant and hopeful. Brushstrokes become looser and more haphazard! There’s such a delight in that.”

been difficult at times. Well this, I thought would be a good way to get some muchneeded practice! That day, I was fortunate enough to gain two new students, sell a print and have another student sign up for more classes. Then, the next day while I was at Michael’s with a commission client to pick out frames, she handed me the exact amount I needed for those supplies because she and her husband felt as though my work garnered more money. I was brought to tears once we parted ways. I sat in my car saying thank you prayers of gratitude for my work being supported and for feeling fully loved; that something larger than me had my back and helped me manifest what it is I needed to continue being of service. I’m still floored and deeply honored by the Universe’s generosity! You too, have this kind of manifesting power. Music, creative writing or journaling about these insights and feelings can also help to move us into the observer space. It can show us blocks to our growth that only using the right brain can do. Words, movement and sounds are so infinitely powerful, especially when tied to positive action. When a student chooses to put those words or movements on the canvas and carve around them with their paints, it brings forth more thought-provoking dialogue. Many times, they can be tied to repetitive dreams they have been having recently. I’ve watched them take that and then articulate its full meaning and solutions right in front of me. It never gets old! Holding onto trauma and pain, our bodies and our minds are always pushing us to listen. You are here to grow and without adversity, 388


there is stagnation. Celebrating what we have or what we’re surviving can move us through the suffering into that space we create for tenderness and compassion. How would you speak to yourself as that sweet three-year-old? Probably not the way you do when you mess up. This is something I ask myself and my students regularly and it’s a universal theme. We are our harshest critics. So, let’s turn that on its head. How can you be kind in this moment? Can

you take a deep breath and try again? You absolutely can! This is where the magic really gets cooking! Once you’ve moved from the space of judgement, you can then begin to flow creatively. Finding a new narrative for that negative story you have been carrying around with you like a sack of rocks can be set down

as you move on down the path, free and clear of that weight. Colors become more vibrant and hopeful. Brushstrokes become looser and more haphazard! There’s such a delight in that. When you are free of that albatross, you can just be and that’s good enough. Having a student or even myself be reminded that they were created perfectly imperfect just like everyone else alleviates the shame they’ve been carrying around because of that past trauma. The freedom now allows not only for their growth but for the growth of those they are surrounded by. When we live on the right side of our brain more frequently, we can grow in a way that has been destined to us. Becoming all you’re meant to be then allows those you are connected to a permission slip to do the same. That happy ripple is sent out for an eternity into the Universe. Positive change affects every living soul in ways that can change the world and how we move through it. It pushes others in the direction of a healthy change. If we each fully knew that we were amazing just the way were created and that it’s really okay when we mess up, wouldn’t we all be more willing to try new and seemingly scary things; use your voice as a means of change; be less critical of yourself and others; be more compassionate, kind and caring? Absolutely and I bet you can be all of these and more!






Your “diaphragm” is the dome shaped muscle beneath your lungs. When it contracts and flattens, you breathe in. When it relaxes, you breathe out. But do you know your diaphragm plays an important secondary role in protecting your trunk and spine by controlling abdominal pressure? The muscles that support your trunk form a “canister.” The front and sides of the canister are created by your abdominal and rib muscles. The back of the canister includes those muscles attached to your spine. The bottom of the canister is formed by the muscles of your pelvic floor, while your diaphragm serves as the roof. Together, these muscles control your abdominal pressure and core stability. A well-braced core provides a stable foundation for moving your arms, legs, and head – in much the same way that when firing a canon, a large ship serves as a better platform than a rowboat. During normal breathing, your upper chest should remain relatively still. Patients with “dysfunctional” patterns frequently overuse their upper chest muscles instead of their abdomen and lower rib cage. This depressurizes and destabilizes your core, leading to other problems like back pain. You should not need to always think about proper breathing – this should happen subconsciously. Unfortunately, many of us have “learned” poor mechanics and need to re-learn proper breathing. One of the easiest ways to re-train proper breathing is to sit or lie still with one head on your breastbone and the other hand on your abdomen. When you breathe in, only the hand on your abdomen should move, while

the hand on your chest remains still. Your normal breathing rhythm should be about three seconds of inhalation followed by six seconds of exhalation. If you find that you are exhaling too quickly, you may try “pursing” your lips to gradually increase the length of your exhalation. The exercises that follow are essential for your recovery. Once you have restored normal breathing mechanics, you will enjoy increased core stability and your treatment will be much more successful. It is important to perform your breathing exercises consistently, as repetitive exercise will allow your body

only the hand over your abdomen should rise, and the hand over your chest should remain still. Once you are able to breathe by moving only your abdomen, you may use your lower hand to lightly compress your abdomen as you breathe in, then relax the pressure as you breathe out. Alternately, you may apply light pressure to the sides of your lower ribs as you inhale. The ideal breathing cycle (while resting) is three seconds of inhalation followed by six seconds of exhalation. If you find that you are breathing out too quickly, you may try exhaling through pursed lips in order to gradually increase the length of exhalation. You should practice proper breathing in multiple positions; first, lying flat on your back, then sitting, then standing, and finally, while performing more challenging movements, like squatting with your hands overhead. Perform as directed. Abdominal Brace Perform:

“re-learn” to subconsciously move in a safe and a coordinated fashion- thereby reducing your risk of injury. Diaphragm Breathing: Perform 1 set of 2 breaths, 1 time per hour. Note: 10-20 upon awakening and retiring Begin lying flat on your back with your knees elevated and feet on the floor. Place one hand on your abdomen, and the other over your breastbone. Breathe in slowly and deeply through your nose. If you are breathing properly from your diaphragm,

3 sets of 10 reps, 2 times per day. The basic goal of “abdominal bracing” is to tighten your abdominal wall in order to protect your spine. This exercise may be performed by imagining that someone is about to punch you in your stomach. Your stomach muscles should contract to brace for the punch. Your abdominal wall should not be “sucked in” nor “pushed out”. Do not move your spine or pelvis. This contraction should be performed during all movements throughout the day to assist in spine stability.




Achieve the healthy, active life that you have been missing




Yoga classes can be glorified stretching classes. To me, Yoga is attunement to mind and body. Should it not be an opportunity for us to be in union and attuned to ourselves? Asana practice alone is not enough. As a yoga teacher, I want to offer more than a flowing choreography and a good stretch. Why are we doing what we do in a yoga posture? How does it relate to our life away from the mat? Yoga can change life for the better right? When I tell my class what to do, how to be and what to think, they are right there with me – in union. And they are listening to me! Rarely are they listening to themselves. As a yoga student, you may like that I tell you to relax; that I tell you to love your body; that I tell you to be grateful; that I tell you to let go into the moment. But how long do you follow my telling once you leave my class? What I want, as a yoga teacher, is to support my students finding union with themselves – not with me. I want them to feel empowered to be with themselves and their bodies from an inner source of knowing. This means 394


I can no longer just go through the motions of asana practice. I’d been going through the motions for almost 10 years. And in order to gain experience in hands-on assists for these moves, I found myself at a Phoenix Rising Level 1 Training. The pictures in the advertisements were promising and showed examples of what it was

take rather simple positions and then, coached verbally how to pay attention to my body’s experience and its wisdom. As I held my arms overhead, I was asked to notice what my body was feeling at that moment. EXHAUSTION! WHAT?! Holding arms up was something I did everyday and for much longer than what I was experiencing in that moment. I was devastated to experience complete ov e r w h e l m i n g exhaustion in my arms and shoulders. I felt disappointed in myself. How could I be so out of shape, weak and tired? I was a yoga teacher with ten years of experience and now I felt humiliated. How could I have missed this exhaustion in my body?

I wanted to learn. However, what I discovered about Phoenix Rising Yoga (and myself) were surprisingly different from my expectations and more rewarding than I could have hoped. Fit and strong, I attended my first Phoenix Rising Therapeutic Yoga Class as part of training. Instead of just being told where to put and how to hold every detail of my body, I was asked to

The experience was so significant that it was to change my life. With further coaching, I saw how this experience was a metaphor in how I was living my life. I saw my body overworked and under cared for in my daily schedule. Chores, physical career, working out, and adventure recreation, demanded constant performance from my body. Yet, in return, my body typically received disappointing returns or feedback. It could never live up to my expectations or the demands I made of it: Olympic





Alpine Ski Champion, 6-pack abs, and cover-model beauty model.

truth: My body and I needed to form a much better relationship.

Regardless of going through the motions of asana practice for ten years, I had failed to be truly present with my body or myself. My ego and expectations created a denial of my body’s experience, intelligence and wisdom. It was the scapegoat for every fault and weakness. And now here in one moment of great awareness coaching, I saw the truth – how my mental conditioning convinced me that my body was the enemy and prone to dysfunction. That I needed to ignore its signals and messages for glorified ideas in my head. I saw the

Now I have become a yoga educator. I am very aware that by offering the Phoenix Rising approach to the student’s experience of yoga, I’m offering them opportunities to be attuned to themselves, tapping into their body’s wisdom, and eventually becoming more authentically empowered in their lives. Yoga with awareness is embodied presence – a way of being with the body where we can consciously receive much more from yoga than a good stretch. I want to help those I serve to focus at that level of awareness so that it provides the opening


for a potential life changing experience like mine. Now, in my yoga classes, students experience what, in Phoenix Rising Yoga, is known as Dual Process – movement and awareness coaching for self-inquiry – so they too can learn to listen to their bodies, gaining greater opportunities to enhance their lives away from the mat when they leave my class. Sarah Kaczor Greco is a member of the Phoenix Rising Faculty and will be leading Therapeutic Yoga Teacher Trainings in Webster and New Hartford in 2019 and 2020. For more information, email


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“You do this and you don’t get paid for it?!” Kay Drechsler was asked by one of the patients in the Pediatric Emergency Department (PED). She warmly replied “I get paid with smiles and good feelings.” No one who encounters Kay at Rochester General Hospital would be surprised by this exchange. She works hard as a PED volunteer, checking in with patients and their families to ensure that they are as comfortable as they can be in what is likely a very stressful situation. She restocks supplies, offers refreshments to people waiting, and offers directions to someone who needs to leave the area. Most importantly, Kay lends an ear and words of comfort to people who need to talk, or just sits with those who don’t want to be alone.

a young age so that she would have many years to spend her time as she wanted. “I just didn’t realize that being blind would be a part of that wish”. Kay knew that she wanted to keep herself busy doing things that made her feel good and fulfilled. She was volunteering at the Hospice Home when the directors there mentioned that they were going to start

One thing that makes Kay unique in her role as a volunteer at RGH is that she is legally blind. A TIME FOR CHANGE Kay worked at the United States Post office for over twenty years. At the age of 46, her vision started to decline. She required numerous doctors’ visits, requiring her to fill out Family Medical Leave paperwork so that she would not be penalized for her absences. It was a Human Resources Employee that informed her that she was at an age that she could retire with her pension and medical benefits, which meant financial security for her and her son. Kay used to dream about retiring at 400


volunteering at Rochester General Hospital. Kay was intrigued. She thought it might also be a good opportunity for her since she could ride with them, as she could not drive herself. After looking at all of the volunteer areas, Kay was drawn to the PED. “I love kids and would have had dozens of my own if I could!” She filled out an application and started working

as a PED volunteer in 2012. With help from ABVI (Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired), family, and friends, Kay now arranges her own transportation to and from the hospital. ACCESSIBILITY AND ACCEPTANCE Being legally blind has not had a negative impact on Kay’s ability to volunteer. “I use my cane to get myself to the PED, but it is now like my home, I know where everything is. I know where the rooms are, the fridge, the snacks… Once I was oriented to the area, I was good to go, I don’t even need my cane once I’m there.” She sometimes considers adding a shift in another area, but hasn’t yet taken that step. “I’m just so comfortable and happy in the PED, everyone accepts me and the staff makes me feel like family! When Kay talks about the volunteer program at Rochester General Hospital, her sincere love and respect for it is apparent. She is sure to mention how accommodating and appreciative the volunteer office staff is and how they have an open door policy. Volunteers are encouraged to come in with any questions and concerns, and suggestions are always welcomed. INSPIRING OTHERS Being helpful and compassionate is in Kay’s DNA. “I remember my grandmother and great grandmother always giving of themselves and helping others. I started volunteering with my grandmother when I was nine years old. My sisters and I would go with her to Hill Haven Nursing Home




to sit and talk with the patients and assist them with meals.” Many people have told Kay that they are moved by her positive outlook and her generosity of spirit. A woman who is blind overheard Kay talking about her volunteer activities and made sure to tell her that she inspired her to do more. Kay is walking proof that while a visual impairment may offer more challenges, it does not have to be a barrier to being active and helpful in the community. Additionally, having struggled with depression herself, Kay has firsthand experience with how giving back can be healing. She is very aware of the current increasing trend of mental illnesses, and hopes that sharing 402


her story can help inspire others to get out and volunteer. “Volunteering has really helped me, so maybe it can help someone else. It gives you purpose in life, and really makes you feel good. I can’t imagine being without it.” So yes, Kay doesn’t get paid a salary for the great work she does as a volunteer at Rochester General Hospital, but for Kay that is not the focus or point. “It makes me feel good to know that I am helping people and that someone may decide to volunteer because of my story. Money can’t buy the feelings that you get from doing this”. If you are interested in becoming a part of the Rochester General Hospital volunteer community, or would like more

information, please visit RochesterRegional. org/makeadifference, or call the volunteer office at 585-922-4328. *Volunteers enjoy free parking, access to the Riedman Wellness Center, and a small food discount during each shift.

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Rochester Woman Online's Holiday Edition 2019  

Rochester Woman Online hopes you enjoy this amazing Holiday 2019 edition feature the beautiful Jennifer Johnson Esposito on our cover, along...

Rochester Woman Online's Holiday Edition 2019  

Rochester Woman Online hopes you enjoy this amazing Holiday 2019 edition feature the beautiful Jennifer Johnson Esposito on our cover, along...