Lake Norman Woman Magazine September 2015

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d by

t n e fi fer g n i s e d featuring the journey of an alzheimer’s caretaker

ways to


your empty nest


fun things for the family

Debi Gallo & Associates

L a k e N or m a n L u x u r y Wat e r f r on t & G ol f S p e c i a l i s t s

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lake norman Woman magazine f o r t h e 3 rd a n n u a l

Awards & Luncheon

Thursday, December 10, 2015 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.

Charles Mack Citizen Center | 215 N. Main Street | Mooresville, NC 28115


Tickets on Sale Now $45/Individual Tickets $360/Reserved Tables of 8 Emcee Sheri Lynch

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For more information and to purchase tickets:

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sta f f



Dana Nieters

volume ix, number iv



September different by design


Amy Hallman

Operations support & contributing writer Leslie Ogle

Senior Account executive Stephanie Sullivan

advertising account executive Sandy Comer

distribution manager Juli Simmons

art director Chelsea Bren

S e pt e m b e r co n t r i bu to rs :

Judith M. Daly; Starr Miller; Ryan Michael; Karen Barry; Charlotte Radiology; Anne Buechler; Elizabeth Buehler

c o n tac t u s : PO Box 1000 Cornelius, NC | 28031


Ad Submissions: Lake Norman Woman reserves the right to deny any advertisement or listing that does not meet Lake Norman Woman standards. Submissions are welcome but unsolicited materials are not guaranteed to be returned. Lake Norman Woman assumes no responsibility for information, products, services or statements made by advertisers or editorial contributors. An advertised special printed in this publication is subject to change without notice. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited.


th e


There is a jewelry box on my dresser that isn’t particularly functional or pretty, and it certainly isn’t worth much in dollars and cents. But it once sat on the dresser of my grandmother, making it as precious as gold to me. I also treasure the pair of diamond earrings that I keep there. Like the box itself, they wouldn’t garner a hefty price on any jewelry store counter, but because they once adorned the ears of my Memom, to me, they are priceless. But as much as I cherish these keepsakes left to me by two of the women I have loved most in my life, the hand-me-down I treasure most is what I learned from them about family. Neither of my grandmothers had an ideal childhood. They both grew up extremely poor and had experiences as children and young adults that could harden a person’s heart—that could have caused them to be distrustful, cynical, detached, and aloof. But they were none of these things. Instead, my grandmothers passed along to their families the invaluable knowledge that life doesn’t have to be perfect, or even pretty, it just needs to be filled with moments you share with people you love. And by watching my grandmothers share their love with others—many of whom were not related to us by blood—I also came to realize that family is more than genetics. My Memom’s best friend wasn’t related to us by blood. But the love my Memom showed her and the love she showed in return for our whole clan was as family-like as any I’ve ever known. The ties that bound in the eyes of my maternal grandmother had nothing to do with genetics at all; for her, family was about unconditional love. And she

extended that love well beyond her own four walls, creating a place in her heart for anyone who was lonely or in need. So, how I became so lucky as to also have two men in my life who understand that blood isn’t the necessary ingredient to create a bond, I’m not sure—especially since their roles involve one of the most difficult jobs on the face of the planet: stepparenting. My stepfather, though now battling Alzheimer’s Disease (read more about his and my mother’s story on page 32), welcomed me into his life and family without hesitation. He has been a dad when I needed an extra one, a trusted advisor when I needed guidance, and a friend always. And now I find myself living in another household with a stepfather, only this time it’s my husband, Gerard, who’s in that role. My head spins at times when I think how Gerard’s world changed when he married a woman with three sons. One moment he was a content bachelor, enjoying his quiet evenings, full domain over of the remote control, a clean house, his sanity. The next he’s surrounded by chaos. The whirlwind did not stop him, though, from embracing his impromptu family. And what we learned in the process is that family isn’t just about DNA—it’s about the people in your life who want you in theirs; the ones who would do anything to see you smile and who love you no matter what. It’s love that matters. In this regard, all of our families are much more alike than they are different—no matter what they may look like on the outside, no matter how blended.


. publisher

C o n tac t Da n a v i a e- m a i l at da n a @ l a k e n o r m a n wo m a n. c o m

dana nieters


September 2015


families that work together






meredith fagan, carolina woman fitness for body & spirit

in every issue 34

wo m e n o n th e m ov e



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| september 2015


What Happens To A Business In A Divorce?

Family Stronger Marriage, Stronger Family 5 Fun Things For The Family

Features LKNW Staff’s: What Comfort Food Helps You After A Rough Day?


Here she is: Ann Taboada


leading the way: Stephanie Crisco


special feature: Families That Work Together


cover story: The Heart Remembers

5 thi n gs to d o i n S e p t e m b e r

s c e ne w i th l k n w



jennifer mars, forward realty



ann taboada, perfect form pilates


o n the c over:

nancy & bob carrier ph oto g r a ph y by:

chelsea bren


40 44


woman to watch: Jennifer Mars success story: We Are Family

Home Different By Design Fluffing The Nest After The Children Are Gone

Health Women’s Health 101: Know The Basics


Good Health Starts At Home


Seniors: Why Managing Your Medications Is Important

lo c at i o n & s p e c i a l thanks: rock barn golf & spa

Features (cont’d)


Self mind body spirit: Spiritual Rewards

september 2015 |




w what comfort food helps



you after a rough day?

S t e p h a n i e S u l l i va n

My comfort food is cookie dough. On a rough day, I will make a big batch of it, scoop it into a bowl, and eat it like ice cream—Yum! It puts a smile on my face every time. Now that they make edible cookie dough and cookie dough ice cream, it’s easier to “comfort” myself.

Leslie Ogle

My grandmother always put cheese on our veggies so we would eat them. Cheese peas became a family tradition after we kids fell in love with them. Grandmother would doctor up peas with American cheese, pimentos, boiled eggs, and a cracker crust before baking. Our running joke in the family is “Give Peas A Chance!”

Amy Hallman

Homemade wraps are my favorite, and I make enough for lunch the next day. I don’t care if it has chicken or beef in it—actually, I’d rather go straight up beans! Black beans, refried pintos, and corn is perfect, but the important part is the extra sharp cheddar cheese is not melted. Then add lettuce or spinach, tomatoes, salsa, and sour cream, and a bad day is history.

S a n dy C o m e r

I love Matzo ball soup! Our recipe comes from my grandmother, whom I adored. It’s made with homemade chicken broth, sliced carrots, fresh parsley, thin egg noodles and, of course, Matzo balls. It won’t cure an illness but it sure helps to take your mind off how bad you feel!

Da n a N i e t e r s

Pickles! My mother loves pickles, so I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. The first thing I do after kicking off my shoes and getting on my comfy clothes is open the fridge and dive into a jar. I munch on them while I’m cooking dinner and then again when I’m watching TV. They’re addictive!


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Juli Simmons

I can always find comfort in organic popcorn. I make it on the stove with my own special spices. It takes a while to eat, so it helps calm me down when I am stressed out. But even when I’m not stressed, it just brings me joy when I need a little boost.

c h e ls e a b r e n

Although coffee is not a food, it brings me comfort no matter how rough the day was. I can drink it at any hour, and at any temperature. It has become so comforting to me, that my fiance knows by how I look at him if I need a cup. Especially since having a baby, I don’t leave a cup unfinished!

september 2015 |




{ h e r e she i s } An LKN Woman who personifies what makes Lake Norman Women so great


ta b oa da H o m e to w n : Ro c k y M o u n t, NC LKN To w n : Mooresville

Household: H u s b a n d M a n n y, s o n M at t h e w ( 1 4 ) , da u g h t e r S a r a h ( 1 1 )


i am an LKN oman because… My family lived in Manteo, on the North Carolina coast, for many years, so I’ve always wanted to be near the water. When my husband and I were engaged, we purchased land in a lakefront community in Mooresville. I enjoy unwinding in the quiet morning hours, kayaking or paddleboarding.


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In need of a different design:

I attended UNC-Chapel Hill and was accepted into the business school. While I wanted to focus on operations management, they didn’t offer that concentration, so I transferred to UNC Charlotte. After graduation, I worked with Barclays American Mortgage as a project manager for systems integrations, business development, and acquisitions. I loved the idea of making processes efficient—be it systems, technology, or space layout. Ever since college, I’ve taught fitness classes, so I think my pull toward “efficiency” also drew me to Pilates. The Pilates Method teaches you to activate the correct muscles to create various movement patterns. Creating this alignment within your body makes you more efficient in your daily life and makes your body a more efficient machine overall.

All in a day’s work: My passion is helping people. As a trainer, I get to meet such a variety of clients, and I love hearing how Pilates has helped them achieve something more in their everyday life, whether it’s health related or just having more energy with their kids. Scared straight: Several years ago, we

were sitting at Thanksgiving dinner, and my father asked me about a lump he saw on my throat. It turned out to be a cyst on my thyroid, and I had it removed. My thyroid is fine; and while there really wasn’t any medical explanation for it, I believe it was my body’s way of telling me to look at my health. I can’t be more grateful for this event as it paved the way for me to continue to put my health first. By keeping my diet and fitness level in check, I’ve managed to keep life’s challenges in perspective.

Much love—and some luck:

I am incredibly thankful for my family. I truly believe they are my greatest gifts. My parents were outstanding role models for me growing up, and now I’m blessed to have my own family. My husband is my best friend; my daughter is my North Star, and my son is my inspiration. I’m pretty lucky to have all of this under one roof!

Ann Taboada is the owner of Perfect Form Pilates in Cornelius located at 20545 Torrence Chapel Rd., Suite B. Call them today at 704.560.0383 or visit for more information on hours and class schedules. | september 2015

By: leslie ogle | photography by: chelsea bren

september 2015 |




What Happens To A Business In A divorce? Every day, many women face the often complex issues of separation and divorce. Another layer of complexity comes when the woman is either a business owner or the spouse of a business owner. It is important to arm yourself with knowledge regarding these issues. By: Judith M. Daly

Is a business marital property?

In North Carolina, all property acquired during the marriage by either or both parties and owned by either or both parties on the date of separation is presumed to be marital property. While a business that was owned prior to the marriage is not considered marital property, any increase in value of that © Shao-chun Wang | prior-owned business that occurred during the marriage is considered a marital asset—and that value is subject to division. If said business is a corporation, it is the value of the shares of the corporation that is subject to division. How is a business valued?

A business is valued generally by one of three approaches: asset, income, or market. An asset approach focuses on the balance sheet, which reflects the value of the assets minus any liabilities. An income approach looks at the business’ ability to generate future cash flow. The market approach compares sales of similar businesses in the marketplace. While each party may employ his or her own business valuation expert to value the business, any evaluation can be costly. A financial advisor or CPA may be able to estimate the value of a smaller or less complex business. How is the business divided?

In dividing marital property the court must be equitable. However, equitable does not mean equal; the court can use financial factors in each party’s situation to make an unequal division. It is possible that a business cannot be divided. If so, the business will be awarded to one party while the other party will receive a comparable value of other assets, or a distributive award paid, possibly over time.


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What should I do?

If you are a business owner, prior to marriage it would be helpful to: enter into a prenuptial agreement; obtain a business appraisal; and insure that the shareholder or partnership agreement prohibits shares transfers without other partners’ or shareholders’ approval and their right to purchase your shares or interest. Once married, do not co-mingle personal funds © Kguzel | with business funds. If you are the spouse of a business owner at the time of divorce, gather as much business documentation as possible prior to separation. While discovery, subpoenas, deposition, forensic accountants, and business valuations are all useful, available options to determine a business’ value, it can become extremely costly to pursue this information. Should I go to trial?

Two of the most common reasons the division of a business goes to trial are to determine what portion of a business is marital or the value of the business. The clearer everything is to both parties about ownership and the valuation of a business at the time of separation, the more likely the parties will reach an out-of-court agreement on property division. Reaching an agreement versus going to trial can save each party tens of thousands of dollars. What to do?

Take time to meet with an attorney knowledgeable in family law and division of property issues who will take time to discuss your unique and particular circumstances. Judith M. Daly is a North Carolina State Bar Certified Family Law Specialist. For more information contact her at Daly Family Law Firm at 704.878.2365.

The above information is not intended to be legal advice, but is a general statement of the law in North Carolina. Please seek advice of legal counsel regarding your own particular circumstances.

september 2015 |




Stronger Marriage, Stronger Family

How to create this win-win situation: Make yourselves a priority Don’t feel guilty about getting sitters and having date night

By: Karen Barry

raise the most happy, healthy children possible then do your best to have a healthy, happy, and emotionally engaged relationship with your spouse. While it sounds simple, it often isn’t. You entered your relationship with love, dreams, and the desire for lifelong love and fidelity. Yet, approximately 50 percent of marriages end in divorce, and breaking up is even more likely for couples just living together.

I f yo u wa n t to

Additionally, research tells us that adding children to your family actually decreases happiness and increases divorce rates. With children, priorities shift, and the emphasis on romance and friendship fades into the background. Children need us for their very survival, and we fall in love with them in ways that are unimaginable. And while this is wonderful,


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the shift away from tending to your romantic love can spell trouble and pain down the road. I say to clients, “The squeaky wheel gets the grease, and children are very squeaky.” Other than fulltime employment, children consume most of our time. However, loving on your children instead of your mate is really counter to what children need. Secure children need a secure base. This means your adult romantic relationship needs to be secure. The new science of adult love tells us that adults need attention and a secure bond as much as children. Twenty-five years of research and clinical experience by Dr. Sue Johnson, the foremost authority on couples therapy, explains that understanding what makes love work is based on something called attachment theory. Dr. Johnson is the

developer of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), which is based on the attachment theory. It’s not selfish to keep your relationship in the forefront of your life. “Romantic love is not the least bit illogical or random,” Dr. Johnson asserts. “It is the continuation of an ordered and wise recipe for survival.” We need love as much as we need shelter. When couples are happy and secure in a relationship, they provide one another a safe harbor in times of trouble and despair. They repair arguments more easily and are even healthier physically. Research shows that adults with a loving partner experience less depression, anxiety, heart disease, and they heal more quickly from injury. Simply stated, your children will thrive when they see their parents in love and so will you.

Try to get your children to bed early enough to have time together Occasionally go away together Play together Make love Be accessible, responsive, and engaged

Karen Barry, MFT, LMFT, is a licensed marriage and family therapist working with adults, children, couples, and families at Davidson Counseling Associates. She also conducts the highly effective relationship-enhancement program Hold Me Tight (HMT) based on Dr. Sue Johnson’s book. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Karen at 704.237.3847 or visit

© Designpicssub |


september 2015 |




lknw feat u re

Leading The Way As we rise into leadership roles, it’s not always easy to navigate the leadership path. After all, there are as many leadership traits as there are leaders. LKN Woman talks to area leaders in the hope that we can learn from one another’s successes and failures in confronting leadership challenges. stephanie crisco, Charles Mack Citizen Center

“This job has given me such an understanding of what leadership is. Looking back (I came here at 23 years old), I know now that I knew nothing then!” Stephanie Crisco is the supervisor of The Charles Mack Citizen Center in Mooresville, where she is responsible for venue management and operations, which hosts thousands of events each year. There are 20 staff members on site. Leadership, Stephanie says, starts with setting a standard. “When you’re knee deep in a conflict or crisis, those are the moments that people are really watching to see if you can walk the walk or if you’re just talking the talk,” she explains. And compassion, notes Stephanie, is important, too. That compassion came in handy for her during a recent interview that should have been over before it even started: The candidate showed up in pajama pants and animal slippers. “I actually went through the entire interview just in case they ended up being amazing—but alas, they had really underdeveloped interview skills as well. It was painful.”

mama is artistic and has a knack for beautifully putting things together. And my MeeMaw was a force to be reckoned with. Once, in a checkout line, the cashier was on the phone with a customer, and MeeMaw told her that the person on the phone would just have to wait. Of course she said it with that grandmotherly ‘bless your heart’ tone. I think we all learned something that day.”

It’s easy to see how Stephanie’s life mantra—“Break the mold”—led to her career highlight of more than doubling the center’s revenue stream. It all goes back to that high standard you set in the beginning. “Make sure you live up to it so that you can, with a straight face, expect others to meet it, too,” Stephanie says. “I do my best to model and share it.”

leadership is?

Leadership is striving to make the right choices and decisions even if they aren’t popular.”

| september 2015

Leader First job:



Work smarter, not harder.

Career advice:

Best time-saver:

Google, for literally everything

Don’t sweat the small stuff. In the end, it’s all small stuff. Comfort snack at

Diet Sundrop. With Skittles, if necessary.


I wish I had more time to


do absolutely

it’s family time! I love chasing after my kids, Carter and Natalie.

When I punch out,

If you could make over anything, what would it be?

Women’s dressing rooms. How about some soft lighting and air circulation? How would your high school teachers describe your younger self?

Stephanie was inspired very young to be creative and assertive, both strong traits for a leader—and both strong traits in her family. “My


as a

Work mantra:

Stephanie admits that she sometimes lets her voicemail notifications get the best of her. “I realize I could just check the voicemail and make it go away; but something about that notification on my phone drives me into a panic.” And she recognizes she’s not alone. “I get a kick when I get an email from someone and within 60 seconds, a voicemail, too, asking if I saw their email.”

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By: Amy Hallman | photography by: Elizabeth Buehler

september 2015 |




A Different Kind of Design:

work families that



r e

By: Dana Nieters


or better or worse, we all love our families. After all, blood is thicker than water, right? So, why wouldn’t you want to work with family? You know them, and you trust them, so it should be a no-brainer. But the ties that bind aren’t always easy—working with members of your family has the potential to be a very trying, sticky, and challenging situation. It can bring out the best in you and your relatives— and also the worst in your working relationships. But read about some LKN families who have it all figured out!

lake norman chrysler dodge jeep ram Who Works Together:

Husband & Wife: Jack & Robin Salzman LKN Business Location:


The Student:

I love working with my husband. I have a great respect for his business sense, and I learn something new every day from him!

Working Together:

Automotive was Jack’s background and mine was marketing, so it was easy to


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lembo & montgomery cosmetic & family dentistry Who Works Together:

Sisters Kara Lembo, Lindsay Montgomery, & Ashleigh Nussman LKN Business Location: Mooresville

Ups & Downs:

We depend upon and support one another through ups and downs. Trust and respect is an unconditional bond between sisters, so it isn’t just an average working relationship; it is so much more than that. It’s sharing dreams and achieving lifetime goals together. It’s knowing someone will always be there to lift you up and make you smile. It’s encouraging one another and believing in success together.

Never Give Up: decide on a chain of command. Without the dealership, you have no advertising—he is first!

Letting It Go:

The only think I don’t like about working with my husband is that I cannot always be right (LOL)!

All Work and No Play:

We carry our responsibility of 180 employees with us 24/7. We love it and embrace

the opportunity. However, as husband and wife, we need quality time that doesn’t involve the business. So we make a pact—no business talk on certain days or in specific situations.

Treating Everyone Like Family:

We have other family members working at the dealerships and overall, we try and treat all of our employees like family!

We don’t give up on one another! If we have a miscommunication, we talk it out to make sure each family member understands. Communication is the key to having a great sister-work relationship.


We have a lot of family traditions, such as watching National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation on Christmas Eve, celebrating The Ohio State vs Michigan game no matter who wins, and baking our grandmother’s favorite cookies.

Positive Traits:

We have quite a few family traits that are positive for our business such as encouragement and unity.

september 2015 |




“We’ve created a business with our own vibe and personality.”

lineberger orthodontics Who Works Together:

Husband & Wife Drs. Matthew & Megan Lineberger LKN Business Location:


Differences In Work Styles:

We are very different people! Matt is very much an “Everything is amazing, the glass is 3/4 full, ‘I live in happy land’” kind of a guy. That can be a bit much in the mornings! But we actually mesh very well. We’ve created a business with our own vibe and personality.

Chain of Command:

We don’t work the same days! It’s either Dr. Matt or Dr. Meg day.

Leaving It At Work:

Our kiddos (Mason, 4; Mia, 2; and #3 due in February 2016!) don’t really allow us to talk about business all the time, so that helps. But we do have many dinner convos over an iPad.

When You Need a Break:

We usually just take a step back from the business. We golf together, get some sushi, or go out on the lake and act like we’re two crazy kids in dental school again!


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ballas chiropractic Who Works Together:

Husband & Wife Dr. John & Donna Ballas LKN Business Location:


Points of View:

We are both passionate and strong individuals. We don’t always see eye to eye, but we have tremendous respect for one another. We have different skill sets and points of view and that serves us well. However, every now and then it can cause us to lock horns!

Making the Call:

We usually figure out big decisions together. John is a great doctor. My background is business. But everything we do in our office is a team approach.

Down Time:

We aren’t always good at taking time off. We try to keep it in check by doing activities that we enjoy such as hanging out at the lake or going to the beach. We just took up cycling. But most important, every day, we laugh! That is huge!

Giving Back:

We feel it is our duty to give back to our community. That joins us in a purpose that gets us up in the morning!

raymer-kepner funeral home Who Works Together: Husband & Wife: John &

Claudia Kepner, and son Jonathan Kepner

LKN Business Location: Huntersville

Together From Way Back When:

We purchased Raymer Funeral Home in 2011, but The Kepner Funeral Home was established in 1845 in Wheeling, West Virginia (we’re celebrating 170 years this year!).

Family Qualities:

The number-one quality for both John and Jonathan is compassion. Sometimes I wonder if the calling to be a funeral director has been handed down for five generations! They are both compassionate, level headed, easy

to talk to, and very good listeners.

The Down Side:

There really isn’t much I don’t like about working with my family, but if I had to name something, it would be that since we are a 24/7 business, one of us is always on call. Although, after being married for 35 years, I’ve become used to it.

Proud Mama:

The pride I feel watching John and Jonathan work together is what I like best about having a family business.

september 2015 |




it works, independent distributor Who Works Together: Husband and Wife: Aaron

& Alicia Waters; Daughter Kayla Demeny; and Alicia’s father, Ken Jones

LKN Business Location: Everywhere!

The Great Escape:

Traveling is our best escape from work. We love taking trips out of the country and having limited connections with the outside world. We travel several times annually to serve in foreign missions, plus we love cruises and allinclusive resorts.

Giving Her Wings:

Kayla is just turning 19 and finding the balance between being a team leader and

being a teenager can be difficult. On business trips, I step aside and ask her to step up and lead her team.

The Connector:

Aaron’s best professional quality is his willingness to connect with people. He can walk into any room and make people feel comfortable.

Dreaming Big:

Every New Year’s Day, we have a family dream board update. Kayla participates and implements her new business goals and dreams. I love watching both my girls set goals, get a plan, then go after them!

Duel Dreamers:

The Goddard School was my dream, and Gordon supported me in making that a reality. When Gordon wanted to follow his dream of being a professional potter, I supported his dream; and he left corporate life to a life with his hands in clay.

Time Out:

the goddard school Who Works Together: Husband & Wife:

Gordon & Barbra Bryan

LKN Business Location: Mooresville


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We respect each other’s space and allow each other time to recharge. Gordon’s time in the studio allows him to connect with himself and his craft. For me, being with my horse gives me a

great sense of purpose.

The Office:

We share a very small office. Gordon can be very disorganized, has a cryptic filing system, and sometimes stores broken things there. I like to have everything in its place. Our two ideas of work space frequently are at odds with each other!

Key to Success:

We have a great relationship, truly love one another, and respect each other’s space. Plus we both have a good sense of humor.

september 2015 |




get back to nature

outdoor fun indoors


| september 2015

Contact Latta Plantation Nature Center in Huntersville for more information on all three centers: 704.875.1391 or

Build a tent with blankets and have a “campout”—complete with S’mores, hotdogs, hot chocolate, and other camping treats. Have the kids make a “campfire” with construction paper, and take turns making up ghost stories. The scariest story wins a prize! Check out for other great game ideas.

hit the rink

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Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation operates three nature centers in the county, and each offers hiking trails, picnic shelters, and other outdoor activities.

How long has it been since you’ve been ice skating? It’s more fun than you think and great exercise for the entire family. It’s a short drive to Pineville Ice House, and you can get more information at or by calling 704.889.9000.

© Athenar |

for the Family

Go to for some tips and fun ideas.

© Notebook |


This is great for the kids on a rainy day! Develop the theme for a game, then draw, print from the computer, or cut from magazines everything you need to create your own game. Kids will love coming up with the rules, the game pieces, and the prizes; and you can make it educational as well.

© Artushfoto |

5 Fun

make your own board game

Contact them at 704.895.5686 or

© Stephanieberg88 |


The Lake Norman Wildlife Conservationists has lots of options for volunteering and fun family events. From building butterfly gardens to cleaning up riverbanks, they are sure to have something for everyone.

© Darkroijoy |

Volunteer in the community

heart remembers: the

T h e J o u r n e y o f a n A l z h e i m e r ’ s Ca r e tak e r by: dana nieters | photography by: chelsea bren


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Tw e n t y- f i v e y e a r s a g o , my mother, Nancy Carrier, would have scoffed to think that one day she would be Bob’s caregiver. After all, Bob Carrier was not a man who needed anyone to take care of anything. Though not exactly the strong, silent type (strong, yes; silent, not so much), he was always in control and in charge. He handled insubordination— from his staff at the Hickory Recreation Department where he worked as the assistant director for 25 years or from family—with a combination of might and humor. He commanded respect, that is certain, but he also was able to laugh at himself, and at us.

her own mental and emotional well-being, and the isolation from friends and “normal” activities, and you’ll understand why Alzheimer’s caretakers face serious physical and emotional challenges of their own. Finding help is of the utmost importance for caretakers. The problem is that help is not easily found. Mom has taken Bob to see several physicians. He has been on several different medications. But nothing has slowed the advancement. A veteran of the Korean War, Bob is entitled to benefits that could help. And while my mother has contacted the Veteran’s Administration, the process has been neither easy nor fruitful. Just last month, they were turned down for the VA’s Aid and Attendance program, which would have provided much-needed funds for his daily care as well as respite care for her. Without this support, my mother is unable to afford assistance. So for now, she just keeps going.

Mom first noticed that “something wasn’t quite right” about 12 years ago when Bob was in his late 60s. Always a capable handyman, he began having difficulty fixing even simple things. And then he began losing his way around Hickory, a town he had lived in his entire life. Always prideful, Bob did his best to camouflage his confusion. “Bob is so good at covering up,” explains Mom, And it is in “I think early on he knew something stealing those was really wrong, but he would never let me know he knew!” But by 2011, small pleasures the symptoms were piling up. At my that Alzheimer’s is wedding, Bob came up to my husband no fewer than a dozen times and welat its most vicious, comed him to the family. Though he liked Gerard, it was not his enthusiasm depriving her of that brought about these multiple welher husband, even comes—he simply couldn’t remember from one time to the next.

though he stands right in front of her.

Today Bob is in the mid to late stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Most days he does not recognize the people who love him. He needs help with the simplest of tasks. Mom, as his primary caregiver, struggles the most. She sits with Bob and watches westerns, she picks up the leaves in the yard that he compulsively gathers, she answers the same questions again and again. She watches as he struggles to hold his fork, to turn on the shower, and to put on his shoes. She constantly treads a thin line, as offers of help often make this proud man angry.

“The hardest part is getting him ready in the mornings,” she notes. “I have to constantly give directives such as ‘toothpaste goes on your toothbrush, not deodorant’ and ‘that electric razor is to shave with, not to dry your hair.’ I lay his clothes out for him, but he hasn’t forgotten that he likes to look stylish. If he doesn’t like what I have laid out, we have to start all over!” Mom tries to stay positive and in the moment but she battles daily with the stress of caring for a man who isn’t even sure who she is. Add to the mix the anxiety created by her desperate struggles to get help,

I try to help when I can. When the weather doesn’t cooperate, I’ll sit with Bob and watch the westerns. When it does, he and my son, Nathan, and I go golfing. It is on the course that he is most like the Bob of old. He teases us; he goads us; he even tries to bet us $10 a hole. Despite the fact that when we get to the green he has already forgotten the bet, there’s a twinkle in his eye that we don’t see very much anymore.

It is the small things, like that twinkle, that Mom misses the most. And it is in stealing those small pleasures that Alzheimer’s is at its most vicious, depriving her of her husband, even though he stands right in front of her. When she looks backward, she grieves for the man Bob was; and when she looks forward, she grieves for what lies ahead. Coping can be tough: “I feel like I don’t cope very well,” she explains. “I feel so totally alone and depressed. I know God is with us, but at times I lose sight of that. I miss Bob so much. My heart breaks every day to see him slip further and further away from me.” I know more heartache comes for my family. And while we may not be able to get back what we have already lost, we cherish the gifts, even the smallest of them, that each day brings.We received a special gift when we saw that twinkle in Bob’s eyes during the photo shoot for this article. When asked to put his forehead against Mom’s and gaze into her eyes, Bob’s eyes lit right up. “Hey, good looking!” he said. “Want to come home with me tonight?” His ravaged brain may not have known who the woman holding his hand was, but it seems that the heart may always remember. september 2015 |




women o n

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Owner Stacey Hinman and Primrose School

of Lake Norman presented the Iredell County Partnership for Young Children (ICPYC) with a check for $3,139.29, which the school raised at its annual Spring Fling. Primrose School also donated the same amount to the Primose Children’s Foundation, which support programs such as Save the Children and Reach Out and Read.

Pictured L to R: Kenda Leavine, Director; Amber Sparks, Assistant Director; Stacey Hinman, Franchise Owner along with Judy Morgan, Marta Koesling & Christen Fries with ICPYC

The Rotary Club of Davidson recently installed attorney Amy Holthouser of The McIntosh Law Firm as its president. Amy has been a member of the Rotary Club since Goethals, Newborn iNK 2011,Photo: and Bonnie has served as membership committee chair, service committee chair, president-elect, and in public relations.

Studio and co-artistic directors Abby Finger and Shannon Phillips

Abby Finger Shannon Phillips have opened Southern Pointe Dance Academy & Jazzercise Lake Norman in the Huntersville Square Shopping Center. The dance academy will offer dance and acrobatics instruction for recreational and competitive dancers for ages 2 1/2 through adult.


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w o m e n

o n

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Denise Albright is a

“momtrepreneur,” illustrator, designer, and owner of Denise Albright Studio in Denver. Denise owns the entire production process for the 20152016 “Reminder Binder” planner. She sells the planner directly from Denise Albright Studio on Etsy and at any Green Jean Consignment sale in the Lake Norman area. Sperry Van Ness Commercial Real Estate Advisors recently announced the firm’s newly paula quickel established division, The McMahon Net Lease Team. Paula Quickel, Lisa Schaefer, and Kristina Smith are the Cornelius office’s SVN advisors.The group specializes in leasing, sales, purchases; portfolio management; investments; development; and brokerage representation for both tenant and owner.

lisa schaefer

kristina smith

september 2015 |




calendar 5 Things An LKN


o m a n S h o ul d D o I n S e p t e m b e r

19 25

Saturday, Sept. 19:

‘Tawba Walk X: Arts &

The ‘Tawba Walk Music & Arts Festival is back! This biannual, all-local entertainment street festival features 80+ artists and craftmen, bands, performance groups, food trucks, microbreweries, and more.

Saturday, Sept. 26: (rain date: Oct. 3)

The Great Chili Cook-off

4-9 p.m. Mooresville Town Square, 227 Williamson Rd., Mooresville $10 admission (children 9 & under are free, but sorry: no chili with a free ticket)

30 w

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Saturday, Sept. 26:

2015 Cornelius Fashion Show 6-10 p.m. Oak Street Mill, 19725 Oak St., Cornelius $10 admission


Bella Love, Inc. hosts the inaugural fashion show for locally owned boutiques and their one-of-a-kind wears! Enjoy local food trucks and craft beer and wine specials; and also be able to purchase your favorite looks right there at the show!

© Evaletova |

At this family-friendly event hosted by multiple Rotary Clubs in Iredell County, enjoy live music, local vendors, inflatables, beer and wine and, of course, chili! This competition is no joke; with a $2,500 first place prize in the hometown cooker category ($1,000 for 2nd and $500 for 3rd aren’t shabby!). There are also the people’s choice award, spirit award, and best restaurant award.

Fall Food Truck Rally 5:30-9:30 p.m. Rural Hill, 4431 Neck Rd., Huntersville More than 15 food trucks will tempt your palates as you hang out with family and friends. Live music will be provided by the Moonshine Racers. The event is free, though bring cash for vendors and parking ($5).

Music Festival 2-8 p.m. Catawba Ave. & Main St., Cornelius


Friday, Sept. 25:

Wednesday-Saturday, Sept. 30-Oct. 3:

Denver Days Festival 3635 N Hwy. 16, Denver

Sponsored by the Denver-Lake Norman Rotary Club, this family-friendly event—with something for everyone—includes amusement rides and entertainment, food, and many vendors. Visit for the varied times and information on student fun nights and special needs day. Note: no pets, no alcohol, no firearms, or concealed weapons.

| september 2015

© Denver Days |

september 2015 |




“ Scene”



w i t h

Be Scene La k e Norma n Woma n is getting out and about each month, looking for great events and the fabulous and exciting Lake Norman people who are making them happen! So next time you’re at a chamber event, a new business in the area, or just out having fun, look for Lake Norman Woman and our camera. Who knows, you just might find yourself in next month’s

LKNW’s Dana & Leslie enjoy lunch at the Rock Barn Spa retreat.

“ Sc ene W i t h La k e Norman Woma n ! ”

LKNW’s Sandy with Gulben Asku of Alino Pizza in Mooresville

LKNW’s Amy enjoys the mineral pool and chocolate covered strawberries at the Rock Barn Spa retreat. LKNW’s Amy with Andrea Stinson, former WNBA star, All-American, and Amy’s class- and teammate at North Mecklenburg High School. Andrea, a Cornelius native, is the women’s basketball coach at Newton-Conover High School.

LKNW’s Stephanie, Sandy, Chelsea, Amy, Leslie, & Dana had a hard time leaving the mineral spa.

LKNW’s Dana, Sandy, Amy, Leslie, & Stephanie finish the day with a big Mexican dinner!

Administrator assistant Lindsey Fore and client coordinator Shelia Starr from Urban Skin Solutions MedSpa and Laser Center at the Arbors

The staff checks out the newest issue of LKNW at The Lodge at Rock Barn.


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View more Scene photos & more at our Facebook page: LakeNormanWoman

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september 2015 |




so many visual memories: Scarlett O’Hara running down the red-carpeted steps in her red velvet dressing gown; the perfect bridal shot of a bride with her back to you, train tumbling down the stairs; or the young ingénue coming down the steps in her pretty dress, ready to meet her first date.

S ta i r c a s e s b r i n g u p

So often stairs are in the front entrance or the foyer of the home, and they set the mood for your home. Shouldn’t they tell guests who you are and what to expect? Shouldn’t you have a perfect place to pose and make your entrance?

different by

design By: Starr Miller

These ideas can help you update your staircase:

Add a Runner

Add a runner up the stairs to insure that you have traction when running in your stocking feet. It’s even better if you add a border to the design for interest. This is also a great place in your home to add a wonderful pattern without having to commit to it on a grand scale. Remember to look for a dense, durable high quality rug or carpet with a short pile so it will endure high-traffic wear and tear. before


Paint the Risers One easy way to add some zing is to paint the risers. It could be bold and colorful. It could be wild and zany. Still, It has more to do with who you are and how you express who you are. Try these:

Ombre´ paint: deep, darkest color on the lowest step, tinted with a bit more white as you move up each step. 1

Each step is painted with a stencil design two levels darker that the main color of the riser. It gives a bit of depth and interest without a distracting “look at me” effect. 2

Never look backwards or you’ll fall down the stairs. –Rudyard Kipling


Rainbow or pastel colors


Google “painted riser” for countless options.

Change your Balusters


| If you have wooden balusters you may change them to iron, but be advised you will most likely need a shoe placed on the bottom where the baluster meets your step. This will cover the larger round hole left by the wooden picket.


| A great, crisp look is to paint the rails and newel posts black. I like to do this with a white picket for its


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strong contrasting effect. This look does not work as well with iron balusters as the contrast is lost.


| If you’re building and thinking of iron or wooden balusters, think beyond the ordinary. This is a great place to make a design choice. Keep to the lines of your home and design aesthetic, and make a choice that enhances the overall effect.

Starr Miller is the president and principal designer at StarrMiller Interior Design, Inc. Contact her at 704.896.3321 or visit

september 2015 |




jennifer mars LKNW recognizes a woman doing exceptional work in the Lake Norman community, a leader who is paving the way to changing our attitudes and inspire confidence in the future.

on Breaking into the Business: After graduating Miami University in Ohio, with a degree in social work, I decided to pursue real estate. In 2002, after six weeks in school I was in the field. Within three years I started my own company. I enjoy real estate because I’m not just helping someone buy a house, I’m helping someone to find a community and build a dream. Loving people and learning their stories helps me as a realtor—since realtors are usually the first point of contact for those relocating—and I always want to learn what is most important to moving families. on Having a Strategy: It is important to treat others the way you want to be treated because in real estate reputation is everything. My family taught me to give 100 percent at all times. When my business was affected by the 2008 economic crash, I started doing more foreclosure and short-sale business. This change, along with the support of my husband, Mark, helped keep me positive. Also, it’s necessary to follow through with commitments. Life throws challenges at you, and giving up is not an option!

Jennifer Mars forward realty cornelius, nc

on Bringing Joy to Life: I have a passion for lighthouse history. My family and I have seen more than 50 lighthouses all over the country. It has fueled my love of travel; and Mark and I like to stay at bed and breakfasts along the way. We also own a 125-gallon saltwater fish tank filled with coral, fish, and live rocks. When I am not traveling, I like to blow off steam by swimming, biking, and cooking. I have even been an extra on the film set of Captive, which stars David Oyelowo, Kate Mara, and Michael K. Williams. It’s something I recommend everyone put on their bucket list! Jennifer is a broker and realtor at Forward Realty, located at 18059 W. Catawba Ave., Unit 4, in Cornelius. For more information about buying or selling your home, contact Jennifer at 704.775.8442 or visit


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by: Elizabeth Buehler | photography by: chelsea bren

september 2015 |





fluffing the after the children are gone this stage of life, don’t be sad—be excited! Your child is moving on, and you should, too. It doesn’t mean it will be easy; you just have to parent from a distance and in a different way. Dr. Phil recommends putting a different frame around your thoughts—say to yourself, “I’m not going to stop being their mom, I’m just moving to the next phase. I’m going to start being their resource … their mentor.” Be proud of the young adult you have raised, and start planning this new and exciting time in your life!

I f yo u ’ r e fa c i n g

reconnect with your spouse

passions and hobbies

You will have the luxury of extra time now that the kids are out of the house. Rediscover your hobbies and passions that you enjoyed prekids. Maybe competitive tennis is no longer reasonable, but you may find out that you’re interested in learning an entirely new hobby.

remodel or move

time to travel

Paris in the spring, anyone? Whether you want to dine in Tuscany or take an RV camping out West, the time has arrived.

© Noahgolan |

What kind of changes might you make to your home? From a small remodel to a new home altogether, this is a great time to perk up your feng shui. Goodbye, Batman wallpaper; hello, new art studio!

For more information on empty nest syndrome and other parenting issues, visit Parents Magazine at or the Dr. Phil website at


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© Nilswey |

You’ve been raising kids for at least 18 years so we know where your priorities have been, but what are they now? Sit down with your spouse, and have an open discussion about future expectations, goals, and © Monkey Business Images | common plans.

september 2015 |





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september 2015 |





women’s health 101:

Know the basics contributed by: Charlotte Radiology

that women have unique health care needs. In addition, no two women are the same (Perhaps that’s the reason men can’t seem to figure us out!). It’s a lot to keep up with, and let’s face it—our plates are so full already with the needs of everyone else under our care. It’s also why it’s so important for us to understand our individual health care needs—and to advocate for them. Read on for a crash course in women’s health care, from screenings to procedures, and everything in between.

It’s no secret

Mammography & breast health

It’s a no-brainer: We all need annual mammograms, and we need them starting at age 40 (unless family history or other personal risk factors dictate an earlier start). These are the types of mammograms: Digital screening mammography is the gold standard, and can detect cancers up to two years before a lump can be felt. 3D Mammography, the latest-andgreatest, offers better visualization and detects 41 percent more invasive cancers (Hint: This one is particularly beneficial for women with dense breasts or no prior mammogram).



Today we’re fortunate to have access to advanced noninvasive screenings that are pain -fre understandin e. The key here is g your famil yh as well as an y risk factors istory, that may make you vu lner conditions. Th able to certain ese screenin gs include:

Many conditions that once required surgery can now be treated without surgery, which translates to less trauma to the body and quicker recovery time (Can I get an Amen?). Uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) has a 95 percent success rate at knocking out uterine fibroids, which historically could only be cured with a hysterectomy.

Lung cancer screenings d etec lung cancer before it bec t omes symptomatic .

Endovenous laser treatment (EVLT) has a 95 percent success rate treating varicose veins (which, for the record, can be as painful as they are embarrassing).

Dexa bone de nsity screenin gs are important fo r women, st ar ting at 65, earlier if they have risk fact o than 20 mill ion American rs. More s suffer from osteop orosis, and 8 0% of these are women.

Pelvic embolization ends the pain of enlarged varicose veins in the pelvis. Sclerotherapy, the most common treatment for spider veins, is boosting the confidence of women everywhere.

© Elenamiv | Dreamstime.c om


| september 2015

Breast MRI is another helpful tool for high-risk patients to determine a tumor’s characteristics, such as size and extent.

Minimally invasive procedures

Calcium scor ing quantifie s, or calculates, th e amount o f calcified plaque in th e coronar y ar teries, predicting yo ur risk of a fu ture heart attack.

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Diagnostic mammography, a more comprehensive exam, is encouraged for patients with a history of breast cancer or someone with worrisome symptoms, such as a lump, pain, or changes in the breast skin.

There you have it, ladies: the “quick and dirty.” Consider partnering with a group of experts who can help you stay on track. Charlotte Radiology’s subspecialized physicians are imaging experts in specific areas of the body. They are trained and experienced to pick up subtle irregularities that others may miss—and Charlotte Radiology provides a comprehensive list of women’s services that far exceeds what’s listed here. So advocate for your health, and don’t compromise. Learn more at

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i n

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how children naturally enjoy jumping on a bed? That’s because it’s FUN and very much like astronauts in space—their body is in a state of weightlessness at the top of the bounce.

Have you ever noticed

So why doesn’t everyone do it? Studies even show that jumping has a dramatic impact on the lymph system which has a one-way path to travel up to the neck, but doesn’t have a pump like the heart. The lymph is totally dependent on physical exercise to move. Without adequate movement, our cells are left stewing in their own waste products and starving for nutrients, a situation that contributes to arthritis, cancer and other degenerative diseases, as well as aging. Rebounding is reported to increase lymph flow by 15-30 times. Here are some There have been many trends with jumping from the mini-trampoline to box jumps to jump rope intervals. Unfortunately, if you have a weakness in an ankle or knee, you are setting yourself up for injury. But have you ever thought about jumping horizontally? For years, dancers have used the jump board on the Pilates Reformer to practice their jump sequences. In addition, the rebounding motion stimulates all internal organs, moves the cerebral-spinal fluid, and is beneficial for the intestines.

additional benefits to jumping on the Reformer:

. The jumping movement increases bone mass.

. The jump board incorporates cardiorespiratory benefits into a typical Pilates workout regimen. . The jump board awakens the core while the surface challenges the stability of the body, helping individuals build a strong mind-body connection.

Comparing the same exercises done on the floor, the Reformer jump board is preferred because the board counters the gravitational pull and also helps connect to one’s powerhouse. Perfect Form Pilates in Cornelius offers a variety of reformer, jump, tower, and barre classes, along with private and semi-private sessions. Contact us today for your free preview.

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For more information on childhood obesity, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics at or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at


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© Alenkasm |

With a staggering one in three children in the United States overweight or obese, it’s high time for a cultural shift. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years.” Affecting more than 12 million children and adolescents nationwide, obesity is costing our youth health issues that were once only seen in adults, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 Diabetes. The good news is that childhood obesity is preventable. Use the following tips to create a different design and get a handle on this growing health concern.

Nuggets and Fries and Soda, Oh My!: Children learn at a very early age to mimic their parents’ health-related behaviors. In fact, the CDC reports, “In a family with one overweight parent, the child has a 40 percent chance of becoming overweight. If both parents are overweight, the risk increases to 80 percent, compared with 7 percent in a family in which neither parent is overweight.” Easier Said Than Done: Parents know they need to incorporate more

fruits and veggies, but children are not always so willing. However, children do enjoy experiences—different colors, tastes, and textures—so explore creative ways to engage your children in food preparation. For example, have a cooking contest so kids can prepare and present their dishes, explaining health benefits and nutrients in doing so. Also, teach children how to read food labels and how to decipher the appropriate information.

Move It or Lose It: The CDC suggests that children and teens should have

at least one hour of moderate exercise daily, and this is good news for the entire family. Plan walks around the neighborhood after dinner; toss the ball around the backyard; take family hikes on the weekend; or take up a group sport like tennis or golf.

Techno-Time: With all the technological distractions these days, it’s a

wonder kids get any exercise at all. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests parents limit leisure time in front of electronic devices (including television) to two hours per day. Let the eye-rolling begin!

Body Mass Index (BMI): BMI is determined by dividing a person’s weight in kilograms by the square of her height in meters. It’s a good measure of whether your child is overweight for his or her age or height. You can find the BMI calculator on Come Together: Because obesity is a nationwide epidemic, communities must come together to encourage healthy living. Does the design of your neighborhood encourage physical activity? Are there affordable and safe recreation facilities in the area? Are healthy and affordable food choices available in our schools, day care centers, local stores, and community events?

september 2015 |





seniors: Why Managing Your Medications Is Important By: Ryan Michael

heart failure or other chronic conditions, you likely take several medications. It’s no wonder how we may become puzzled over which medicines to take and when, how much to take, or what symptoms the drugs treat. We are at the mercy of our doctors to keep a watchful eye for us; but when we have more than one doctor caring for our health, we need to be extra cautious about drug interactions. When we don’t take our medications correctly, it becomes more difficult to improve our health—and we risk harming ourselves further. If we skip a dose, stop taking a particular medication, or never fill a prescription in the first place, we cannot fully benefit from the intended therapy. Also, complications—some serious—can occur. By better understanding your medication and taking it correctly, you can help improve your health and remain safe at home, where you want to be.

I f yo u h av e

Help with medications is available

If you forget to take your medication or don’t understand how to properly take it, you should immediately talk to your doctor. Don’t assume that it’s safe or effective to take two dosages to make up for the one missed, nor to guess or assume that you are taking the medication the way it was intended. The safest thing to do is to let your doctor know all the medications you are taking, including the dosage, so he or she can help you manage your health. If you do not tell your doctor everything, you are risking your health unnecessarily. Also, a home health care company could help you by sending a nurse to your home to help you better understand each of your medications, explain why it’s important to take the correct dosage, and let you know of any possible side effects.

Are you taking your medication correctly? If you agree with any one of the following statements, you need to be more careful about taking your medications properly. Sometimes I forget to take my medication. Sometimes I stop or miss doses of my medications because I forgot to refill my prescription. If I start to feel better, I may stop taking my medication.

I have cut back or stopped taking my medication without telling my doctor. Sometimes I don’t understand what my medication is for or how to properly take it.


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© Sherryyates |

If my medication causes me to feel worse, I stop taking it.

Ryan Michael is the associate director of BAYADA Home Health Care in Mooresville. For more information about selecting a home-health care service, contact Ryan at 704.696.9000, or visit the BAYADA website at

september 2015 |




We Are Family By: Leslie Ogle | photography by: chelsea bren

“The Body Achieves What the Mind Believes” is the encouraging quote that pulls its weight at Carolina Woman Fitness for Body & Spirit in Cornelius. Evident in its name, as well as its mission, the connection between mind and body is something owner Meredith Fagan understands on a profound level. “I have seen these simple words work miracles,” Meredith says. “Many women have walked through these doors with enormous obstacles to overcome—from common injuries to cancer. We teach them not only to engage in appropriate exercise, but to incorporate the mind, as well.”

Meredith Fagan carolina woman fitness for body & spirit cornelius, nc

Meredith grew up in Columbia, Maryland, and was active from a very early age. She started gymnastics when she was 3 and began competing at age 7; she also excelled in competitive cheerleading. Graduating with a degree in commercial fitness from Radford University, Meredith says her studies, including kinesiology, customer service, business management, and physical therapy, ultimately allowed her to encompass everything she would need to be a gym owner. Also, Meredith had support and guidance from her parents. “My parents managed rental properties when I was growing up, so I learned many of my entrepreneurial skills from them,” she says. “My mom was an inspiration for me: She was never very keen on exercise; she just wanted a place to work out and not feel self-conscious. At first, I wasn’t too sure about a gym just for women; it took some time for me to wrap my head around the idea.” Meredith finally saw the proof was in the fat-free pudding. Her mother found the women-only environment supportive and motivating; and other women agreed. Encouraging words and gratitude began to grow, as did membership and Meredith’s confidence in what she was doing. “It’s simply amazing to see how supportive and caring our members are,” Meredith explains. “You see women confiding in one another and making a difference in each other’s lives. They talk about, and solve, real-life issues they’re facing. In addition to seeing their health and fitness levels improve, the camaraderie here is exemplary and inspiring—it’s the cherry on top!” Having been in business for more than 10 years now, Carolina Woman offers an array of classes including barre, Pilates, yoga, stretch, and meditation. While staff members tailor workouts to an individual’s specific exercise and fitness levels, the locker rooms include special, personal details, such as complimentary Bath & Body Works products, mints, scented candles, hair dryers, and curling irons.


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“I always tell clients to start small and increase incrementally,” Meredith advises. “You can set yourself up for failure if you begin with extraordinary goals. Take baby steps and reward yourself as you accomplish more. We have women here from their 20s all the way up to our oldest member who is in her 80s. It’s gratifying to see every one succeed in her individual goals—watching the body achieve what the mind believes!”

september 2015 |




better me

better you

better world

Mind Body Spirit The mind, body, and spirit are intimately connected. Because unhealthy thoughts and emotions can create a vicious cycle that leads to unhealthy physical patterns, we can choose a victorious path that includes a positive, healing, uplifting spiral. By mixing the ingredients of attitude and action, we can change the flavor of our own lives. Learn to nurture your body and soul to lead a more balanced life.

Spiritual Rewards By: Anne Buechler

And without faith it is impossible to please God because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6 (NIV) L a s t s c h o o l y e a r , I faced parents

with little faith in me as a teacher and, maybe more importantly, with little faith in their children’s abilities. Parents wanted their children to have good grades, through the “work or effort”—and maybe some good will—on my part. Over time, they whittled away at my administration, whose mantra evolved into “Perception is reality.” I’ve never felt so defeated. And so unnecessarily. What they misunderstood is that perception is belief, and belief is faith. If faith is something that does not exist for you, it cannot exist in you. As the teacher, I fought the perception that I was too difficult and that my student expectations were too high. Still, I continued to challenge, support, and believe in them—despite all the turmoil their parents were causing—until my students could believe in themselves. These children learned to develop faith in themselves—and in me. And they grew while their parents doubted.


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This year was the most difficult year in teaching I’ve ever had. I had not stopped urging my students to grow. I continued to nurture, love, and keep them safe and happy. But also, I had to battle the unyielding belief that these kids shouldn’t have to stretch to grow or to strengthen. Surprisingly, by the end of the year, the outpouring of gratitude from students and parents alike was overwhelming. What I had been missing all year (and ironically, what I had given lovingly to my students the entire year) finally came to me in a flood of appreciation and tears from parents in a single, 45-minute dismissal on the last day of the school year. Despite the many times I’d hurt inside and felt all alone, on the very last day, they filled my heart simply by recognizing their faith in me. However, just because the parents hadn’t believed this scenario existed didn’t make it not exist; it just didn’t exist within themselves. With or without their faith, the

reward was there for their children—and even for themselves. Whether or not you believe in God doesn’t determine whether or not His rewards for us exist. God works for the best for us and always gives to us. Our disbelief is just the door that closes us off to Him. Our faith pleases God because He wants us to take His rewards. How much God must hurt when we don’t give Him the faith He deserves. The isolation I felt this year is a fraction of what God feels when we turn our backs on Him, and He is devastated. And if I, as a flawed person, can keep my integrity and continue to be the best teacher for these students despite their parents’ lack of faith, then God, who is perfect in His love for us, will never deny us His reward. We may deny ourselves, but His love for us is always there. This is not simply our perception; that is His reality.

Anne Buechler is an experienced teacher and founder of Competitive Edge Academics, a personalized educational training organization to build academic athletes. For more information about services such as goal setting, learning style development, and portfolio creation, contact Anne at | september 2015

©Andybor |


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| september 2015

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