March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 1
Home and Auto go together. Especially with a good neighbor.
Hal Girard Agency 359-5393 / www.halgirard.com 520 Columbia Ave. Lexington, SC 29072-2645
Thanks for voting us the BEST 10 years in a row! 2 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
For Life’s Little Urgencies Sometimes you need medical attention right away, but don’t need the level of care of an emergency room.
At times like these, Lexington Medical Center Saluda Pointe could be just what you need. Our new urgent care center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. We treat minor illnesses and injuries when you can’t get in to see your doctor or when you need medical care after hours. No appointment is needed. Simply use the MyChart app to let us know you’re on your way and reduce your waiting time. Our diagnostic imaging center offers MRI, CT scan, ultrasound and X-ray. So, when life hands you an urgency — not an emergency — drop by and see us at Lexington Medical Center Saluda Pointe. We’re here to care for you.
154 Saluda Pointe Court Intersection of Hwy. 378 and I-20 (Next to Chick-fil-A) Lexington, SC 29072 (803) 785-3590 URGENT CARE
Open 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Seven Days a Week — No Appointment Needed | LexMed.com
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 5
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It has been raining for two weeks straight and my front yard is a mud pit. We’re not supposed to get this much rain in South Carolina. After all, the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers.” I am not sure why February has had so much rainfall. Baseball coaches have been frustrated at their inability to practice as, night after night, the rains shower down on the Midlands. Obviously, the late, great Eddie Money was not a big baseball fan. His song, I Love a Rainy Night, has a catchy jingle although I am not sure how a rainy night makes me feel good. Most rainy nights just make me feel cold. In order to stay warm, I have been building fires in our fireplace. I enjoy gathering new firewood and keeping the fire toasty. As I step outside, the freezing rain soaks my hair and the cold pavement sends shivers up from my toes and through my spine. I hustle to get done as fast as possible and drop the new logs into the fireplace. The flames roar in excitement with the addition of the new wood and the sudden burst of heat feels amazing on my face. It won’t be long before the 99 degree summer swelter will be here. However, as I taste the rain drying on my lips and feel the fire’s heat warm my soul, I am appreciative of nature and God’s infinite wisdom.
Elinor Fatato Elinor.firstname.lastname@example.org 803-447-0873 GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Jane Carter, Kim Curlee WEBSITE DESIGNER Paul Tomlinson CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Kristi Antley, Candace Brown, Kristen Carter, Robin Howard, Brandon Johnson, Chelsie Kelly, Michael Landing, Kevin Oliver, Jackie Perrone, Marcy Roberts, Marilyn Thomas Cover photograph: Clark Berry Lexington Baseball: Larry James
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18 Epic Homes-Building Relationships One Home at a Time 21 2020 High School Baseball Preview 32 S.C. Riot Room-In Case of Frustration, Smash Here! 36 5 Ways to Prepare for Tax Time 38 20th Annual Lexington Kid’s Day 42 Choosing the Right Rescue Dog 46 Why Do We Spring Forward and Fall Back? Daylight Savings Time 52 Spring Fashion Trends for 2020 55 Give Your Child a Summer to Remember-Summer Camps
58 Affordable Date Night Ideas 62 Do I Need a Sleep Study?
13 Faith Matters 71 David Clark
Departments 9 From the Publisher 11 Events 15 Lexington Leaders 68 Spice of Life
THANK YOU FRIENDS FOR VOTING US THE BEST 8 YEARS IN A ROW!!
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Thursday, March 5 2020 Taste of Lake Murray Fundraiser Event Doubletree by Hilton Columbia, 2100 Bush River Rd., Columbia, 6:30 p.m. Come out for a night of great food and music while you support the July 4th celebration on Lake Murray! Live music and dishes from 15 area restaurants; tickets $75 per person, (803)781-5940 or online at tasteoflakemurray.com. Saturday, March 7 Shuckin’ on the Shoals Festival Saluda Shoals Park, 5605 Bush River Rd., Columbia, 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. Support the park and have a blast at this event! This year’s festival includes a 5k run, music by Cash Money Experience, craft beer and food trucks followed by a VIP Oyster Roast. Oyster Roast tickets only $75/Foundation Members; $90/ Non-Members; $25/Children ages 7-12; Children under 6 are free. For details, tickets, race and sponsor information visit icrc.net.
Thursday, March 19 La Vie Pregnancy Care Center Annual Spring to Life Gala Southern Oaks, 2401 Hwy 378, Gilbert, 6:30 p.m. Celebrate the ministry of La Vie Pregnancy Center of Lexington and uphold the sanctity of human life at this event. Dr. Marc Newman, President of Speaker for Life, will deliver the keynote address. To become a sponsor or register, call (803)996-4673 or email linda@laviesc. org; limited seating available.
Monday, March 23 Spring Gardening Symposium with Jenks Farmer Clemson Extension, 605 W. Main St., Suite F., Lexington, 7:00 p.m. Learn a few powerful tips and tricks to kick off your spring garden! Jenks Farmer is a renowned horticulturist, nursery owner,
garden curator and author. Tickets are available through March 16 at Eventbrite/ facebook/theherbbunch for $12.24 or can be purchased locally for $10, firstname.lastname@example.org or call(803)356-0677. Monday, March 30 Lexington Women’s Club Annual Charity Golf Tournament Country Club of Lexington, 1066 Barr Rd., Lexington, 12:00 p.m. The Lexington Women’s Club is excited to hold its 36th Annual Charity Golf Tournament complete with awards, silent auction and door prizes! Proceeds will benefit the Lexington County Sheriff’s Foundation, support scholarships for Lexington School District One, and provide funding for other community service projects. For registration information and a schedule of events, visit ccoflexington. com or call (803)359-8838.
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 11
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Thank you for voting us Best Domestic Auto Repair Shop! We appreciate your business!
North Lake Auto Repair Family Owned and Operated 511 N. Lake Drive, Lexington, South Carolina 29072 (803) 957-2345 | www.Northlakeautorepair.net
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Law Office of Andrew B Farley, LLC Thanks for voting me Best Family Law 137 E BUTLER STREET, LEXINGTON, SC • 803.359.0428
John Stirewalt Pastor of St. John’s Lutheran Church This April, I’ll take my youngest daughter to hike a portion of the Camino de Santiago. We’ll walk a 150-mile route from Porto, Portugal, to the Santiago de Compostela Cathedral in Santiago, Spain. Christian pilgrims have walked the Camino for nearly 2,000 years. We’ll join pilgrims from all over the world on a hike leading us through small towns, open meadows, and down urban avenues. But we will also experience a spiritual journey. I am using this pilgrimage to pray and reflect over my own life and ministry. Pilgrims say that the Camino pilgrimage can be divided into thirds. The first third is physical, the second third is mental, and the final third is spiritual. As spring approaches, my daughter and I have been checking a packing list. How are you packing your faith satchel for your own spiritual journey? Let me suggest a few questions, which may help to lead you into renewal this spring. How do you define spirituality? How do you discern the roadblocks in your faith? What is your purpose for life and faith as spring nears? If your life is a pilgrimage, what is the goal you seek at the horizon? What unnecessary clutter occupies space in your faith satchel? What are your unnecessary fears? Grudges? Doubts? Obsessions? What wounds can you mend through a simple, loving conversation? Who are the ones you can count on as mentors and truth-brokers? Do you have a community that can support you in your pilgrimage? I invite you to find a community to give you that support. Pack your faith satchel carefully. Include a faith community that will serve you on your journey. As spring approaches, let me wish you a “Buen Camino!”10:00 Coffee & Convo • 10:30 Worship Gathering
Pastor of St. John’s Lutheran Church www.stjohnslexington.com Facebook and Instagram @welcometostjohns Service Times Sunday Worship 9:30 a.m., Sunday School 10:30 a.m.
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March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 13
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Gale McCartha Gale McCartha’s roots go deep into Lexington earth, and she has the houses to prove it. Have you ever known anyone who lives now in her great-grandparents’ house, right across the street from the one where she was born? That’s devotion to home and community, a good description of Gale Roof McCartha and her family. “My great-grandparents were Hampton and Sally Keisler,” she reports. “They owned land along Calks Ferry Road and gave some of it for the establishment of St. Matthews Lutheran, which is where all of our family has worshipped for decades. “My parents, Lois and Luther Roof, live across Calks Ferry. She just celebrated her 90th birthday.” This dyed-in-the-wool Lexingtonian graduated from Lexington High School in 1976, began a career in banking at Lexington State Bank immediately after, and has been serving the Midlands as a banker ever since. Bank mergers over the years brought Lexington State Bank into BB&T. Gale later affiliated with Wachovia and First Citizens Bank and, three years ago, joined up with Security Federal Bank in Lexington. Today, she is the retail banking manager there, helping our local people and businesses get the financial backing to grow and expand. Such a close connection with local enterprise has naturally brought Gale into several volunteer service roles. She has been an active member of Rotary for decades and was president of the West Metro Chamber of Commerce. Along with everyone else in her family, she is active at St. Matthews Lutheran, teaching Sunday school and singing in the choir. She thinks about 90 percent of the St. Matthews congregation may be her relatives. “We like to stay involved,” she says. Gale has been married to Don McCartha for 42 years. Their son Paul is married to Ashley, with daughter Claire; daughter Allison is married to Allen Taylor, with a daughter Molly. n lexingtonlife.com
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16 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
APRIL 18, 2020 FINLAY PARK • COLUMBIA, SC • 8 AM 5-MILE RUN • 3- AND 5-MILE WALK
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Epic Homes: Building Relationships One Home at a Time
by Marilyn Thomas
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Epic Homes is a locally owned custom builder with the business motto to “Build Something Epic.” At its helm is female entrepreneur Jenny Gerben-Nettles partnering with her husband J.J.; together, they endeavor to accomplish this objective by setting their construction standards high and establishing positive relationships with their neighbors throughout the greater Columbia community. “I deal with bricks and sticks,” quips Jennifer L. Gerben-Nettles, the owner of Epic Homes, LLC, a custom-home, on-the-lot building company located at 703 North Lake Drive in Lexington, South Carolina. Originally from Michigan, “Jenny” began her career in the building industry more than 20 years ago, while she was still in high school, but, during the housing market crash in the mid-2000s, she decided to seek better opportunities in the South. Soon after her arrival, she began working with J.J.
Nettles, another builder in the Lexington community, and introduced him to “stick building,” which is the traditional process of constructing houses on-site. Eight years later, J.J. and Jenny became husband and wife; in 2015, after Jenny received her builders’ license, she and J.J. partnered in a new business venture by founding Epic Homes. “When we opened up Epic,” Jenny explains, “we decided to get involved in the BIA (Building Industry Association) of Central South Carolina for networking purposes and the education process that they offer.” Additionally, Jenny joined the Lexington County Board of Zoning and Appeals as well as the BIA’s High Performance Building Council Board. Because of her commitment, Jenny was appointed as chairwoman for each of these groups. “During my time of being the chairwoman on the High Performance Building Counlexingtonlife.com
cil,” Jenny recalls, “we were able to do some big things.” One of their greatest successes was establishing the Certified High Performance (CHiP) home program. “The CHiP home program is based off of the National Association of Homebuilders’ Green Program,” explains Jenny, and its purpose is to create homes that are both efficient and eco-friendly. Several key features of each CHiP home (e.g., building technology, indoor air quality, sustainability, land and material resources, etc.) are inspected by an independent and qualified third party. Also, an individual HERS (Home Energy Rating System) score, the industry standard for measuring a home’s efficiency, is calculated for the structure. To date, Jenny estimates that approximately 7,000 homes in the greater Columbia area have met the CHiP standards. As one of the few women builders in South Carolina who is a Certified Green Professional, Jenny says, “Every single home we build is certified high-performance.” This approach to construction equates to a significant gain for the average homeowner; as a result, “We’re able to take away about 40 to 45 percent of your power bill of a standard home, so the home becomes more efficient,” explains Jenny. Furthermore, she adds, “We want to change the market. Work smarter not harder! It’s all about educating – educating the community, educating the contractors.” Another unique characteristic of Epic’s approach is “When you build with
interior designer, so she’s hugely helpful.” “Our clientele is relatively diverse,” explains Jenny. “We get the first-time homebuyers whose parents have given them a piece of property,” but Epic also works with “baby boomers who are ready to downsize.” “We average between 20 and 30 homes a year,” says Jenny, but each customer is treated as an individual. “We’ve never built the same plan twice,” she says, “and we don’t plan to, and that’s one of the unique things about us.” J.J. agrees and says, “We strive for our homeowners to feel as if they are a part of something, and not just another build to us.” Jason Brabham is a local resident whose
their ideas and presented their concept to Epic Homes. Ultimately, “We built a 2,800-2,900-square-foot house – a very quality home – for under $100 a square foot.” Because entertaining is important to the couple, some of the features they appreciate the most include a front porch and enclosed back porch and a state-of-the-art kitchen with cabinet space, quality appliances, and an eat-in dining area. “We couldn’t be any happier with the house, the finished product that we have,” he says. “No doubt about it, I would rec-
“We want to change the market. Work smarter not harder! It’s all about educating – educating the community, educating the contractors.” us, you deal directly with us,” says Jenny. “We are a small staff and family-oriented. From the time you walk in the door, you’re greeted by either me or J.J. When you get your closing gift and the keys to your house, you deal with us both. We’re very involved.” “Our company has grown since the beginning,” adds Jenny and mentions that Shannon Hunter, as her “right arm,” has been with the company since its inception and is “running our remodel division right now, but really anything that I need her to do. She’s been a builder for 30 years herself, and she is an lexingtonlife.com
family has deep roots within the Lexington community. When he and his wife decided it was time to build their “forever home,” he asked a trusted mortgage broker for advice and was told, “I’ve heard a lot of good things about Epic – locally owned and operated, family-owned, kind of like your business. Go check them out.” As founder and owner of Critter-Ridder, LLC, “I go into hundreds of homes a year,” says Jason. “I personally see good ideas, and I knew what I wanted and what I like.” After years of making mental observations and researching the Internet, he and his wife compiled
ommend them to anybody, and I have, too.” Because of outcomes like this one, Epic intends “to stay in the local Lexington area and grow with the community,” says Jenny. “We want to stay as an on-your-lot, custom-home builder because it’s something we can take pride in. We have an open-door policy, and if they’re thinking about building a home, we want to be the first builder that they think of. Give us an opportunity!” n March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 19
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2020 High School Baseball Preview It’s commonly referred to as “America’s Pastime,” but, in Lexington County, baseball at the high school level is not just a pastime, it’s an extremely popular sport with multiple players heading to the college ranks every season. Fans recognize the high level of play and support their teams at home and away games, enjoying both the athleticism and the strategy that are required for the teams to perform at their best. The only constant in high school sports is the change that comes with a graduating class every year. Here, we touch base with the coaches at Lexington, River Bluff, White Knoll, Gilbert, and Northside Christian to find out what to expect this season.
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 21
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Lexington Wildcats Head Coach: Brian Hucks
he Wildcats have a strong winning tradition in baseball, but last season saw them finish just over the .500 mark at 14–13, bowing out early in the district playoffs. Head coach Brian Hucks is optimistic about the experience they’ll put on the field this season, and his goal for the 2020 squad is a simple one: “Our team goals are the same this year as every year, and that is to win the last game we play,” Hucks says, alluding to the “win or go home” aspect of the postseason playoffs. To get that far, they’ll have a host of returning starters from the 2019 season, many of whom are already committed to play at the college level next year. Seniors include right fielder David Cromer (University of South Carolina commit), pitcher and second baseman Braison Bourne (Clemson commit), pitcher and left fielder Tristan Allen (Davidson football commit), pitcher Elijah Ogden (Florence Darlington Tech commit), first baseman and designated hitter Owen Cofer, and second baseman and pitcher Josh Turner. They’ll be joined by juniors Landon McMahan, Cal Herndon, Ryan Toll, and Blake Knight to form a large, experienced group on the field and at the plate. Hucks also points to some new faces to watch this season that he expects to get good contributions from, including freshman pitcher Reese Marcum, who’s already committed to the University of South Carolina; Brantley Stroud, a junior outfielder; Bennett Robinson, a junior infielder; Palmer Kirven, a junior catcher; and Nathan Hall, sophomore first baseman. The Wildcats will take the season one game at a time, Hucks says. “We like to allow our hitters to be aggressive at the plate and swing the bat, but if we need to play the small game, we’ll do that as well. We will always be aggressive on the bases, too.” Defensively, Hucks says there is one
big key: pitching. “We want our pitchers to work fast, throw strikes, and let our defense do their job behind them,” he says. “We take a lot of pride in fundamentals, making those routine plays and limiting opportunities to score runs.” Hucks is excited about the season and
acknowledges how baseball-crazy Lexington can be. “Baseball in Lexington is insane,” he says. “There are so many good baseball players in the Lexington area. Our administration, faculty, and students all support our program, and we are incredibly thankful for it.”
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River Bluff Gators Head Coach: Mark Bonnette
he River Bluff Gators are succeeding in a competitive region, going 23–7 in 2019 with a playoff run that ended in the 5A Lower State Championship game. Head coach Mark Bonnette notes the toughness of their competition in assessing their chances this year. “Our region is the toughest in the state with four teams ranked in the top eight statewide in 5A,” he says. “Our goals this year are to make the playoffs and then try for a deep postseason run.” Helping the Gators meet those goals will be a host of returning players. Seniors include outfielder Alex Urban (Clemson commit), pitcher and outfielder Ricky Williams (Clemson commit), second baseman Cam Ferrell (Newberry College commit), outfielder and pitcher Jacob Lebron, and first baseman and pitcher William Chastain. Add to that list junior third baseman Ethan Plyler, pitcher Jack Benedict, and a couple of new faces to watch in sophomore shortstop and pitcher Zach Cowart and freshman outfielder and pitcher Thomas Powell. Bonnette likes the team’s chances this season on offense. “We’ve got some guys that can hit for power, and some guys that can run,” he says. “On defense, our philosophy is always for our pitcher to pound the strike zone and play solid defense behind them.” Taken as a whole, that makes the team as versatile as possible, he adds. Bonnette is also a big proponent of the impact baseball has at the high school level on the community. “I think the baseball in Lexington is as good as it’s ever been,” he says. “Our program receives awesome support from both our community and our school.”
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 25
Wishing Northside Christian Academy a great baseball season!
James D. Spangler 803-403-9069 James@FuzionBusiness.com
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26 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
Northside Crusaders Head Coach: Bob McMillan
Seniors Joey McRoberts and Andrew Walke
n his first season with the Northside Christian Crusaders, Bob McMillan presided over a team that won about as many games as it lost, for several reasons. “We had a tough schedule last year,” McMillan says. “There were a number of 3A and 4A public schools on our schedule.” This time around, McMillan has lined up a slate of more appropriate opponents, all of them SCISA teams, but he cautions that it still won’t be easy. “Our conference is one of the strongest in the state,” he notes of the still formidable competition they’ll be facing. The Crusaders will return two seniors, with the young team rounded out by a couple of juniors, a sophomore, and six freshmen, two of whom started last year as eighth graders. McMillan says the team will aim to compete in several areas and levels. “Our pitchers throw strikes and know how to locate the ball,” he says. “On offense we are going to be aggressive on the base path; we like to steal to advance runners.” The Crusaders’ strong point is the offense, he says. “We have good bats top to bottom in the order. We put an emphasis on hitting.” With its status as a private Christian school, McMillan acknowledges the environment is different than one might find at a public school. “The Christian focus of the school and its athletics program gives us an upper hand on discipline and commitment,” he concludes.
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White Knoll Timberwolves
imberwolves head coach Blake Roland is looking forward, not backward, this year, although he acknowledges 2019 was a year that left room for improvement, overall. “Last season didn’t turn out how we had hoped, but we began to see strong improvements toward the end and had some bright spots that give us some excitement leading in to 2020,” he says. “Our goals this year are to compete every day, win more than we lose, make the playoffs, and win the district championship.” The Timberwolves will look to a wide range of players and levels of experience to reach those goals. Senior Kameron Dunlap (University of South Carolina commit) will be a factor as a starting pitcher and at the plate, along with fellow senior Grayson Endrenyi. Look for junior Dylan Johnson behind the plate and in the batting lineup alongside juniors Reign Lybrand and Andon Dodds, with junior Caleb Shealy and senior Ethan Murray competing for time at third. The Timberwolves’ pitching rotation will include senior Dylan Isgett, junior Alex Lyon, Bryce Metts, and sophomore Levi Dunn, along with Carsen Brown and Will McMickens. New faces to watch include fielders Zane Anderson and Kennedy Ramsey, and Trey Gallegos, who is back from Tommy John surgery, should see some innings at
Head Coach: Blake Roland
catcher. Roland is looking to shake things up offensively but still stick to the basics. “We’re going to bunt the ball a little more this year in hopes of putting ourselves in a good position to score runs, but our primary focus will be on pitching and defense,” he says. “If we are able to score one run an inning, we feel good about our chances.” Roland is a big proponent of baseball in Lexington and across the state, noting our high stature among statewide peers. “Baseball in the Lexington area is the strongest in the state,” Roland says. “Here at White Knoll, we rely on the administration, staff, and support staff for their support of our baseball program.”
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John Barrier 173 Corley Mill Road, Suite B Lexington, SC 803-399-7588 firstname.lastname@example.org lexingtonlife.com
Gilbert Indians Head Coach: Ashley Burnett
he winning tradition is strong with Gilbert baseball, where they have notched several state championships over head coach Ashley Burnett’s long tenure with the school, which straddles both their 2A and now 3A status as the school has grown. In 2019, they posted a 19–9 record and lost to Strom Thurmond in the Lower State finals, the second year in a row they reached that point before falling short. “We are hoping to build on last year’s success and compete in Region 5,” Burnett says, staying true to the basics that have made the Indians a perennial contender. Look for Travis Elliott, a Citadel commit, to provide leadership on the field and in the lineup, but Burnett will have his core team mostly intact from 2019. “We return most of our lineup from last year’s team,” he says. “So they will all be impact players.” As for any strategy or tactics that the Indians will look to win games with, Burnett is likewise both flexible and matter-of-fact. “The game situation in each case will dictate our offensive and defensive philosophy,” Burnett says. He agrees that baseball is alive and doing very well in Lexington. “The quality of baseball in the Lexington area is tremendous,” he continues. “We receive excellent parental, student, and administrative support for baseball at Gilbert.”
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 31
n o i t a r t s u r F f o e s a In C
Smash Here! By Chelsie Kelly
Someone cut you off in traffic. Your boss made you stay late. You bit your tongue. Life is full of aggravations that you brush off every day. It’s important to find a safe, healthy way to release your frustrations, no matter how trivial they may seem. But maybe yoga, crafting, or breathing exercises aren’t for you. Perhaps you need something bolder such as smashing a TV with a sledgehammer. If that sounds appealing, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have anger issues, it simply indicates that it’s time for you check out the SC Riot Room.
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wned by Mark and Michele Kijula, the SC Riot Room has been in business for just over eight months. Mark had the desire to become his own boss, and Michele felt that a “riot room” would be perfect. Riot rooms, also known as rage rooms or smash rooms, were likely started in Japan in 2008 or earlier. The concept quickly spread to other countries, such as Serbia, England, and Argentina. Today, there are hundreds of rage rooms in cities in the United States such as Tucson, Dallas, Milwaukee, Rochester, Hampton, Charlotte, American Fork, and now, finally, Columbia. So, just what is a riot room? It is a place of business where a person can vent his or her rage and anger by smashing items in a controlled environment. “It’s just a fun and secure place for you to break things and enjoy the moment and not have to clean it all up. As a mom, wife, and woman, I don’t want to have to clean it up,” explains Michele. The next closest riot room is located in Greenville, but this new form of entertainment is quickly growing, and the riot room has received steady business since its doors opened. “To just mindlessly break things is great,” Michele remarks. “Escape rooms are fun, but you have to think logistically. You don’t have to think at all here.” Some people worry that riot rooms promote violent behavior, but it has proven just the opposite. While owners Mark and Michele clarify that they are not licensed therapists, they do believe that the riot room is entertaining and provides a healthy form of stress relief. “You’ve been taught your whole life not to break things. You’re conditioned, ‘don’t break it,’ but once you do it’s a flood gate,” says Michele. “It’s a primal instinct for people to want to knock things over.” The Riot Room provides guests with baseball bats, crowbars, golf clubs, frying pans, two big wrenches, one large, and one small sledgehammer. Guests are not permitted to bring their own weapons. “People always enjoy it more than they thought they would. They come out with the biggest grin.” A large part of what really excites guests is having their choice of music blasting in the background during the riot. There’s nothing like listening to Mötley Crüe and pretending that you’re a rock star from the ’80s trashing a hotel room with no consequences.
While most guests ask for simple rock and roll or a heavy-metal playlist, there is a Bluetooth soundbar and Apple Music, so if guests have the option of using their own music or a playlist they prefer. Riots can be done alone or in groups. “A lot of it is lighthearted recreational fun. It tends to be more of a group thing. People don’t want to do something alone for the first time. We only have one room, and it can accommodate four people at once,” says Michele. A single riot is for up to two people to release their pentup anger for 15 – 20 minutes. Each single riot session includes 15 small glass items to smash and trash as well as one medium-sized
"You’ve been taught your whole life not to break things. You’re conditioned, 'don’t break it,’ but once you do it’s a flood gate."
item such as a DVD player, VCR, alarm clock, keyboard, lamp, etc. Then, there is the full-on riot package, which includes up to four people for 20 – 30 minutes. Each full-on riot will get 60 small glass items to feel the wrath. The room will also include two medium-sized items and one large item such as a TV printer or a laptop. “A lot of stuff is from local thrift stores, and we try to find stuff that people wouldn’t want or that is already broken,” said Michele. There are several other packages to choose from, but the most interesting has to be the “Bring Your Own Riot.” The B.Y.O. Riot allows one person to bring their own items to break during the riot for 15 – 20 minutes. “One woman brought Christmas ornaments from her and her ex-husband” according to Michele, and another “brought in three flat-screen TVs and 10 printers.” It’s similar to the feeling people get when they tear up a photo they appear in with March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 33
an ex-boyfriend or girlfriend but magnified. This is the perfect way to take something that holds bad memories and completely annihilate it. While people are encouraged to bring their own items, there are a few limits. Guests are not allowed to bring any liquid or lithium batteries or old tube TVs. While they are fun to smash, they are not allowed for safety reasons. The SC Riot Room takes guest safety seriously. Tyvek safety suits are optional if the guests are wearing long sleeves and pants. They also have chest protectors, helmets with face shields, cut-resistant sleeves, and gloves. Guests must sign a waiver; basic ground rules include wearing closed-toed shoes, no swinging at other people, no rioting under the influence, and no participants under 16 without a parent or a legal guardian present. Since the riot takes place in a closed room, there is a camera for safety in case someone hurts themselves; this video also serves a more creative purpose. “We offer to put your riot on FB live,” Michele remarks. SC Riot Room riot videos can be found on their Facebook page @ scriotroom. “Most people are all about it and often share the video. We also have a screen in the lobby where the riots can be viewed as they happen.” Photographs are encouraged before and after the event for a lasting memory. This activity is perfect for so many occasions, be it a celebration or party, a small group of friends looking for something fun to do, or even just someone who had a rough week at work. If you are ready for a breaking-edge experience unlike any other, round up your friends or co-workers, set a date, and reserve it on the SC Riot Room webpage at scriotroom.com. n
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March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE ROAD (HWY. 1) • I-26 EXIT 111-A • 936-1447 • WWW.CAROLINAPOTTERY.COM
Ways to Prepare for Tax Time by Brandon Johnson It’s that time of year again - the dreaded tax time. Soon all your W-2s and 1099s will be rolling in and you’ll need to schedule an appointment with your tax consultant. It doesn’t have to be torture. Follow these five simple steps to make for a stress-free tax season. Pick a Preparer Finding a tax preparer can be difficult, so what’s the best option? Talking with family, friends and coworkers could work, they may have a tax preparer to recommend. It’s important to understand what the tax professional’s rates will be, along with their turnaround time. Knowing the answers to these questions ahead of time can save you a lot of headaches in the future. Organize, Organize, Organize It seems like common sense to have all your documents in order, but many people just put everything in a folder and give it to their tax professional. While that might be fine if you only have W-2s, anything more than that should be opened and organized. Try and imagine that you’re the tax preparer. How would you know which expenses belong to which rental? Handing over information that is neatly organized can only benefit you in the long run. There will be fewer questions from the tax preparer which in turn means less cost for you. So how do you organize all those documents? Simple! Follow the lines from the 1040 tax return. Line 1 is wages and salaries so you’ll want to organize all your W-2s. The next lines are interest and div-
Voted Best Ambulance 2019 & 2020 Photo by Megan Melton 36 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
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idends so any 1099-Int or 1099-Div. Following along the tax return will keep all your information organized and make it easier for the tax preparer. Document Changes You’d be surprised how often people forget to tell their tax professionals about a new baby or an address change. This information is essential in preparing an accurate return. Be sure to document any such changes along with a new job, buying a house, or starting up a new business. These changes can affect your return in ways you may not have thought about. That new baby may qualify for a child tax credit and that new house may mean you can itemize this year. The Past is Important If you’re going to a new preparer then you must bring a copy of your prior year’s return. While you may not think of this, your tax preparer can get loads of information from just one glance. It’ll also provide something to compare the current year’s number to when finished. This can allow your preparer to point out various increases and decreases and explain why they happened. Be Patient If you send your information to your tax preparer in January or February then you absolutely should expect it to be done in a timely matter. However, if you wait until late March you should almost expect that your return may not be finished and you’ll have to be put on extension. It’s important to remember that filing for an extension does not mean it’s an extension of time to pay the amount of tax due - it just gives you an additional 6 months to file your return. You still need to pay what you owe to the IRS by the April 15 deadline. Taxes? No Sweat While filing your taxes can be overwhelming and a bit intimidating, following these five simple steps will help you keep your cool and breeze right through. Here’s to a stress-free tax season for everyone! n
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March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 37
April 25th 2020 10:00 am2:00 pm 38 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
Kids Day of Lexington Celebrates It’s 20th Anniversary
Where can you take the kids for free food, games, entertainment and hands-on educational activities all in one place? At Kid’s Day of Lexington! What began as a labor of love in the Palmetto Chiropractic Center parking lot twenty years ago to benefit the Nancy K. Perry Children’s Shelter and the Dickerson Center for Children has developed into a community-wide event. “We had no idea what we were doing in the beginning,” Dr. Jason Yoder reminisces. “Dr. Jud Heldreth and I sent out faxes to area businesses to recruit sponsors and spent hours on the phones to get people involved each day. The first year we had Kid’s Day here in the parking lot during the month of May and it was blazing hot!” he says. “I knew we needed more space and shade, and the town was gracious in accommodating our needs in an effort to spread health and safety awareness to Lexington families,” he explains. The event has grown at an astonishing rate and was moved to the convenient, picturesque atmosphere of Virginia Hylton Park at 111 Maiden Lane. The mission of Kid’s Day of Lexington is to “create a better community by educating and caring for families with love, honesty and laughter.” The event has become an annual tradition that many families look forward attending and has always been free-no sales, solicitation or political influences are permitted. Based on sharing information regarding health, safety and environmental awareness, local health advocates, organzations and businesses get involved each year with monetary donations, booth rental, materials and food as well as participation and volunteering in the events of the day. Surprise guest visits throughout the day from national and local mascots such as USC’s Cocky, the Clemson Tiger, The Lexington County Blowfish, Foxy the Silver Fox, Olly the Otter, the River Bluff Gator and Smokey the Bear keep children actively engaged while they trot from bouncy houses to educational booths for goodie bags and informative discussions, to face painting, to live music and entertainment and food booths. As with any venture, rapid growth sometimes presents difficult issues, and local law enforcement plays a huge part in the event. Having the amphitheater nearby and being located on Main Street creates a wonderful environment for families to get out and explore, but safety is certainly an issue. “Partnering with the Town of Lexington and the Police Department has been phenomenal, especially with the new traffic patterns and large number of visitors,” Jason says. “It would be impossible for us to supervise crowd control, monitor security and insure the safety of our young people without their ongoing presence.” Not many events can say that one hundred percent of all proceeds will be donated; every cent generated by Kid’s Day of Lexington benefits two local charities for children. The Nancy K. Perry Children’s Shelter provides safe harbor, school, church, medical attention and counseling for local children who are victims of abuse, neglect or abandonment; The Dickerson Center for Children provides support and resources for children who have been physically or sexually abused by administering mental and physical healthcare along with legal assistance in a healing environment. Kid’s Day is a great way to contribute to these important causes and have fun at the same time. Learning, laughter, eating, entertainment, education and good old-fashioned fun awaits! Are you ready to get involved? Whether you are bringing your children for a treat or want to help, there is something for everyone at Kid’s Day of Lexington! Perhaps you have a teenager who needs to earn volunteer credits? Or maybe you are interested in being a sponsor? Details and registration forms can be found online at lexingtonkidsday.com; volunteers can call (803)356-8554 for more information. n
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 39
Kirk Morgan would like to thank the readers of Lexington Life Magazine for voting him the best "litigation attorney" for the past eight consecutive years. Walker Morgan, LLC, is a civil litigation law ﬁrm with a special emphasis on serious and catastrophic personal injury cases. Walker Morgan, LLC, has gained a national reputation for litigating burn injuries. If you or a member of your family has a legal matter that may require resolution in the civil court systems, Kirk Morgan and Walker Morgan, LLC, invite you to contact their ofﬁces Mo Thanks for Voting me Best Litigation Attorney
at 135 East Main Street, in downtown Lexington.
135 E. Main Street • PO Box 949 • Lexington, SC 29072 email@example.com | www.walkermorgan.com Phone: 800-922-8411/ 803-359-6194
2020 Shamrock Festival Schedule of Events:
3/12–Thursday: 7–10 pm The Bograts
Same Neighborhood New Home
The New Johns RV Sales and Service and Airstream South Carolina Dealership located on Interstate 20, Exit #51 in Lexington, SC.
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3/14–Saturday: 12–8 pm $10 Irish classic food items under tent 2 pm Shamrock Parade on Main Street with “The Sesh” 12–5 pm Kid’s Activities: Bouncy Castle, Face Painting, Rock Climbing Wall and Games 5 pm - Jameson rep here 2–5 pm Brandon Mullis 7–10 pm If Birds Could Fly
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
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11:30 am–1:30 pm Jim Graddick 12 pm–4 pm $10 Irish classic food items under the tent 12 pm–4 pm Kid’s Activites: Bouncy Castle, Face Painting and Games
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Choosing the Right
Rescue Dog I
by Robin Howard
had the overwhelming urge to adopt a dog after a particularly rough patch in my life. I needed happiness and fun. I needed a wiggling ball of fluff. My plan to find the perfect dog was to go to the shelter and let fate bring us together. I imagined that I’d just lock eyes with my ideal buddy, cartoon bluebirds would swirl around, and we’d live happily ever after. My husband looked at me like I was a lunatic. While he was up for saving a life, he was concerned that randomly choosing a pet could end up making everyone, including the dog, miserable. Negotiations followed, and we agreed that I could adopt a pup, but only after I educated myself on canine training and behavior. Due to my reluctance to go outside in hot or cold weather or when there was something particularly binge-worthy on Netflix, I also had to prove my dedication by taking care of an imaginary dog for two weeks. I sulked through my part of the bargain, but, four weeks later, when I was driving home with the perfect dog (for me), cartoon bluebirds trailing us all the way, I had to admit my husband was right about choosing with my head and not just my heart. That month, I dutifully walked my pretend dog twice a day, read stacks of training books, and countless behavior blogs. Somewhere between the pages, I ended up creating a realistic list of what I could offer a dog – and what I couldn’t. During my research, it occurred to me that, while humans have nearly endless choices for the pets they adopt, rescue animals have no control over where they end up. Therefore, it’s the pet parent’s responsibility to choose well for both parties. Here’s what I learned about how to do it right. Choose a dog with your energy level Taking care of an imaginary dog for two weeks meant I had to get in the habit of walking twice a day, whether I felt like it or not. Though in my head I’m an active person, in truth, I’m more tortoise than hare. I learned I needed a fur buddy that would be happy with a spin around the neighborhood, then snoozing while I read, worked, or watched movies. That eliminated high-energy breeds, some of which were at the top of my list. Match your quirks All dogs have quirks, not just rescues. Thinking through my quirks helped me understand which eccentricities and issues I am equipped to handle – and which I am not. While trolling rescue sites, I fell in love with a forlorn dog with a history of biting when she was scared. Fearful dogs can be helped, but, since I was new to dog ownership, I had to admit what she needed was out of my league. However, I still felt like I could handle a dog with idiosyncra-
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 43
sies – as long as the dog matched my own. For example, I’m an introvert: I don’t have children, and I like things quiet, although I don’t mind when dogs bark at noises or the doorbell. I figured not many people would want a dog that was a curmudgeon, but a low-key, cranky canine would fit right in at my home. Evaluate the expense Dogs need yearly exams, vaccinations, and monthly heartworm prevention. Some also need extra medical care or regular grooming. Professional grooming was not in my budget, so I eliminated dogs that needed a glam squad. I’m not squeamish, and I can absorb the cost and effort of inexpensive daily medicines or injections, so I didn’t eliminate all dogs with special needs.
Who wants to play catch?
Think about training I have minimal interest in training and no interest in dog tricks, so puppies were out. All dogs will need some training, however. I did commit to ensuring my new buddy was housetrained, could walk nicely on a leash, sit, stay, and not jump on people. Locating your new best friend Once you have your list of dog parameters, you’re ready to head to the shelter. I found that shelter and rescue social media pages were the best way to keep up with who was available for adoption or coming up for adoption. It was also the fastest way to get answers about a dog’s history and personality. When I found a dog that might be a good match, I filled out an application with the rescue or shelter so they could get my background check and approval process started while I corresponded with its foster parents or shelter staff. This proved to be crucial; by the time I found my perfect match, he had a waiting list. But I was first in line because I was already approved. When I met Ted, a six-year-old American Eskimo who had been abandoned when his owners moved, I knew in my head and my heart that we were right for each other. Ted is a fuzzy little curmudgeon who doesn’t like exercise, other dogs, or the doorbell. He also needs medication three times a day. But he loves people, long naps, and visiting restaurant patios for long lunches. We are just right for each other – had I not done my homework, I would have overlooked him. Epilogue: Be open to magic Two years later, I learned one more important lesson about choosing a shelter pet: Sometimes, it’s okay to throw the list out the window. We adopted a second dog – a tiny, abused rescue who needed several surgeries and years of patience and training. Surprisingly, Ted took her under his wing right away. Today, she is a happy, well-behaved explosion of joy. Elderly and special needs animals are often overlooked at shelters, but these pets can provide some of the most fulfilling friendships you’ll ever have. Dogs have a way of changing people for the better, so do your homework and stay open. You just might need the change or challenge a rescue dog presents.n
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March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 45
Why Do We “Spring Forward” and “ A History of
Dayl Savings It is generally assumed that Benjamin Franklin – along with inventing lightning rods, bifocal lenses, and medical catheters – was responsible for proposing the idea of “adjusting the time” to allow for more daylight. Franklin actually suggested in a letter to the Journal of Paris written in 1784 that people go to bed earlier and wake up earlier, thus being more productive, although the article was not meant to be taken seriously. The idea was actually contrived in 1907 by William Willet, an English house builder. Willett was riding his horse through the almost deserted streets of London in the early hours of the morning when he wondered why so many people were still asleep while the sun was already shining. Willett thought people would be healthier – and happier – if exposed to another hour of sunlight every day. He also worked out the economic implications; according to him, the United States alone could save $25 million in energy costs every year. In spite of extensive lobbying and the support of prominent Britons, including Winston Churchill, Willet’s idea was never taken seriously until after his death. In 1917, the decision was made under the “Defense of the Realm Act” to advance the clocks in the UK by an hour every year, partly because of the need to save coal during the First World War. In the UK, the new “time” became known – perhaps optimistically – as British Summer Time. Britain’s enemy, Germany, had already successfully adopted the concept of adjusting the clocks in order to save energy. Within a few years, most countries in Europe had adopted some version of Daylight Savings Time. In 1917, parts of Canada and Australia also initiated it. Today, Willett, whose far reaching contribution to history is often overlooked, is buried in the picturesque London cemetery of Petts Wood, with a memorial in the form of a
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sundial set permanently to Daylight Savings Time. A nearby pub, the aptly named The Daylight Inn, also commemorates Willet’s achievement. In 1918, the US House of Representatives voted by an overwhelming majority to pass a “daylight savings” bill in the United States, adjusting the clocks twice a year, as much of Europe was already doing. After the war ended, the practice became optional; most states discontinued the practice, although some states – even individual cities – still observed Daylight Savings. This led to regular confusion over bus and train times, opening hours, and other scheduled events. During World War II, President Roosevelt established year-round Daylight Savings, which became known as “War Time.” After the war, states and localities were again free to choose whether or not they observed the practice, leading to more and more confusion over the time. It was discovered that on one 35-mile stretch of highway between Ohio and West Virginia, buses and their passengers went through seven official time changes on their journey. In some parts of Texas, people discovered they were two hours ahead of or behind their neighbors. In 1966, Congress decided to end the confusion, thus creating the Uniform Time Act, which was in place until recently, with the time being changed on the last Sunday of April and the last Sunday of October. The law does not actually require that anyone observe Daylight Savings – it just states that it must be done uniformly, making it somewhat difficult not to comply with the law. Three states still refuse to observe the new system by passing their own state laws, i.e., Indiana, Hawaii, and Arizona. If you are traveling in Arizona, it can become even
more confusing; the Navajo Indian Reservation, which covers a large part of the state, does observe Daylight Savings. However, the Hopi Indian Reservation, which is contained entirely within the Navajo reservation, does not observe time changes. Today, over 70 countries throughout the world practice Daylight Savings. Japan is the only major industrialized nation not to do so. Even research stations in Antarctica observe the practice, where the concept is virtually meaningless, as there is no daylight in the winter, and there are months of constant daylight during the summer. There is the question of what to do with the extra hour. Some people maintain that it takes almost an hour to actually change the time on all the watches, clocks, and electronic devices in their home – and not forgetting the timer on the VCR or the clock in your car, and the “time-stamp” message that’s recorded on your telephone answering machine. Fortunately, the time displayed on your home computer is usually programmed to change automatically twice a year. What about the hour you lose when the clocks go forward? As the English writer Richard Whately put it, “Lose an hour in the morning and you will spend all day looking for it.” Officially, the time changes at 2 a.m. on the day in question, the time being chosen as the one that would cause the least disruption. Most people adjust their clocks sometime the day before, in order not to forget to do it, and most of us are, of course, asleep at 2 a.m. anyway. It has been suggested many times that, when we change the clocks, we should also change the batteries in our smoke detectors – an estimated 30% of homes in the United States have missing or worn-out batteries. Regardless of whether or not we agree with it, we have learned to accept the change in our routine and to adjust our schedule and our life around the concept of having another hour of daylight. Further, there is no doubt that the tiny act of adjusting the clock hands forward or backward means improvements in health, the economy, and productivity. Some studies have also demonstrated a decrease in crime and traffic accidents due to the changing of the time, i.e., it is statistically safer to travel home from work or school in the daylight. The Department of Transportation estimated that around $30 million is saved annually in traffic accident costs. In 2007, Congress voted to extend the period of Daylight Savings Time for an extra
four weeks. Since then, the time has been changed in March and November, rather than April and October, with a resulting significant reduction in energy usage. If you want to learn more about Daylight Savings Time – and time in general – a great place to visit is the National Watch and Clock Museum in Columbia, Pennsylvania. In addition to displaying over 12,000 timepieces of every conceivable kind, on the two days each year when the time changes, the museum has a full program of events celebrating Daylight Savings. n March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 47
48 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
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March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 49
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March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 51
Spring Fashion Trends for 2020 by Robin Howard If you’re wondering what to wear as the temperatures rise, you’ll be glad to know that this year’s fashion staples are a smart mixture of basics and fun accessories. You’ll also be happy to hear that this spring’s trends give a nod to sustainability. If you love these new looks, you get even more fashion points for upcycling vintage pieces, repurposing what you’ve got in your closet, or buying just a few new pieces to spice up your capsule wardrobe.
52 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
ith an eye on mindfulness, this year’s trends are less like fashion rules and more like guidelines for creating your own style. On the spring runways, designers such as Chanel, Saint Laurent, and Louis Vuitton set the pace with a clear message: Keep things simple, fun, and relaxed – but express your unique personality. This year, fashion houses borrowed liberally from the trends of past eras, so don’t be afraid to raid closets and vintage shops to build your own style. For inspiration, here are some of this spring’s hottest new trends. Bold Color Energize your spring wardrobe with your choice of bold colors. Make this style your own with the primary colors of the 1950s or the neon brights of the 1990s. For a modern spin, go for a global color palette. Think marigold orange, spicy saffron yellow, indigo blue, and deep emerald green. For added interest, grab your color wheel and choose accessories that are in the opposite color family from the focal point of your outfit. Pair vivid blues with tangerine, buttery yellows with violet, or tomato red with spring green. Feminine Denim At last! Low-rise skinnies are giving way to looser low-slung (but not low rise) denim. For women, straight leg, wide leg, and relaxed boyfriend-style jeans are what’s happening this year. The great news is that these cuts are much more flattering and comfortable to wear than the skin-tight versions of past trends. With any of the new styles, embroidered details add a feminine twist, especially to relaxed jeans with tomboy flair. Go for small details on the front pockets or legs or go all out with fully embellished denim. Jeans with a distressed hem are also fashionable this year. Frayed-edged jeans contrast nicely with a tailored blouse and are easy to pair with your favorite t-shirts. The best part of the new denim trends? You can comb vintage stores for looser-fitting, naturally worn-in jeans (just go one size up), embroider your own, and snip off your own hems. Polka Dots What started as a whisper last year has become a roar. This year, the runways are full of 1950s-style polka dots, including spotty garments by Tory Burch, Carolina Herrera, and Zara. If you don’t feel like going totally retro with your dots, you’ll be on-trend if you liberally mix them with geometric or animal prints and bold colors. Polka dot pieces have never really gone out of style, so if you’re shopping mindfully, check the back of your relatives’ closets first. Pair a vintage polka dot dress or skirt with modern sneakers and a denim jacket, or a flowy 1950s blouse with boyfriend jeans for updated takes on a classic. Menswear-inspired Menswear-inspired outfits have been gaining traction in women’s fashion trends since actor Diane Keaton made it her siglexingtonlife.com
nature style. Menswear is fun to style because it’s infinitely versatile and open to interpretation. If you’re not sure where to start, try pairing a plaid blazer with jeans or a tailored suit with platform sneakers. One trend that isn’t going anywhere soon is masculine brogues. Wear a low, classic brogue with feminine skirts and dresses or a chunky platform brogue with straight or wideleg jeans. Pick a bright color for spring, and you can wear the jeans with everything. Men and Women: Suits Speaking of menswear, this year, women’s suits are essential for a well-rounded spring wardrobe. To keep a suit from looking too nine-to-five, or too dated, look for cropped or wide-legged pants and a matching jacket tailored to your form. Dress it up with flats or square heels or make it casual with brogues or sneakers. If you already have a nicely cut suit in your wardrobe, have your tailor update it by shortening and sliming the ankles and tailoring the jacket. In a nod to the 1920s, 2020 men’s suit fashions are more relaxed. A more comfortable cut makes modern suits the perfect answer for a casual night out. In fact, just one good suit can streamline your entire spring wardrobe. Don’t wear a button-up shirt and tie with these ensembles, though; to get the look right, you’ll want to pair them with t-shirts and sneakers. For Men: High-Low High-low style means mixing more expensive tailored pieces with less-expensive casual ones. For men, mixing jeans with a t-shirt and a fitted blazer is a perfect blend of dressy and laid back. Another way to create the high-low look this spring is pairing dress pants with sneakers and a sweatshirt or wearing a lightweight sweatshirt under a blazer. If you like the highlow look, be aware that not anything goes. The key is to straddle the line between dressy and casual. Distressed jeans are too casual to mix with a tailored shirt, and a tuxedo jacket with jeans will make you look like a poorly dressed James Bond. Monochromatic While women’s fashion is all about vivid colors this spring, men’s style is more understated. If you’re a guy who hates to shop, this can be an excellent thing. Monochromatic outfits are about choosing one color and wearing shades of it from head to toe. To avoid looking like a cartoon character, though, choose a neutral shoe and dress shirt or t-shirt for a subtle contrast. Pick a color you look good in, then build your spring (and summer) wardrobe around it. This spring’s fashion trends may be the most fun and flexible we’ve seen in decades. Choose new accessories to add to your staples, then stay on-trend by challenging yourself to upcycle or update a few pieces that express your personality. n lexingtonlife.com
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 53
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Give Your Child a Summer to Remember by Marcy Roberts
Kids today are much busier than we were as kids. With additional homework in the evenings and more emphasis on extracurriculars ranging from sports to music lessons, there is little time today for a kid to simply be a kid and explore his or her own interests. The last thing you may want to do during the lazy days of summer is to put your child in a summer camp. Summer is, after all, a time for kids to let loose, hang out with friends, and splash around at the swimming pool. Yet the summer is also a great time for kids to explore interests they don’t have time for during the busy school year. While most kids can happily entertain themselves just fine for a few days, inevitably, the long days of summer will cause boredom to set in. Summer camps are a great way to enrich a child’s interests as well as ease that boredom. Perhaps your child has been dreaming about gymnastics lessons or being an actor, but there just hasn’t been time for it, the summer is a great time to let your child explore his/her interests. It may be that your child simply wants to try another sport out, such as swim lessons or soccer, while he/she normally plays basketball during the school year. Or perhaps your lexingtonlife.com
child wants to try out his/her skills at computer programming or sculpting with a camp offered by the local college. There is a wide variety of summer camps available today to suit almost any interest. Some camps are designed to give children a variety of experiences, such as combining culinary arts with kayaking and dramatic performance with karate. With camps ranging from a few days to a month or longer and from half-day camps to overnight camps, there is surely a camp close by that provides the opportunity for your child to explore his/her interests. Camps are equally as available for kids of working parents as for kids with one stay-at-home parent. While some camps offer only half-day programs, which is an inconvenience for working parents, many of these camps provide the option to extend the camp for an additional fee. Also, with most camps scheduled in one-week blocks, you can schedule a karate class one week, followed by an art class the following week, and so on, which gives working parents the peace of mind to know their children’s days are being occupied by safe and supervised activities. You and your kids will all be happy that you made the decision to try a new experience this summer with a summer camp or two. n March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 55
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Date N ID
If you’re on a budget, planning date nights can be a stressful event. If you’re looking to get out of the house and do something besides watch Netflix with your significant other without breaking the bank, check out the budget friends date ideas below for inspiration. PACK A PICNIC It’s a simple date, but one that can be extremely romantic. If the weather is nice, go to a local park, sit beneath a tree, and share a glass of wine and cheese. Talk about your life, your dreams, how much you love each other, etc. Picnics provide the perfect opportunity to be a little extra romantic without spending a fortune on a fancy dinner. If it’s too cold or rainy for a picnic, move the date inside. A living room picnic beside a fireplace with smores and hot cocoa can be just as romantic and extremely cozy. TAKE A WALK IN NATURE If you and your significant other love the great outdoors, go for a hike. Hiking is a great form of exercise. It also gives you two a chance to talk, and you’re sure to see some spectacular views. Take a few selfies to capture your favorite moments, and congratulate yourself on planning a date that’s good for both your body and your relationship. TAKE A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE If you and your significant other have been together a long time, flip through old photo albums and talk about your favorite moments together. Revisit your favorite vacations, birthdays, and anniversaries. Looking at how much the two of you have grown as individuals and as a couple can strengthen your bond and make you fall in love all over again. VISIT OPEN HOUSES If the two of you live together or have been discussing moving in together, spend an afternoon visiting various open houses. Even if you can’t afford to buy a new home now, it’s fun to dream. Talk about what you want your life to look like in five or 10 years’ time, your likes and dislikes about the different houses, and which neighborhoods you like best. Imagining your dream 58 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
by Candace Brown
home, and what your life might look like in the future, is a great bonding experience and a fun way to spend an afternoon. INDULGE YOUR SWEET TOOTH Dining out can be expensive. Cooking meals at home is a great way to save money, but it’s okay to indulge from time to time. The next time the two of you enjoy dinner in the comfort of your home, follow it up by going to your favorite restaurant and splitting dessert. Not only is it a nice treat, but sharing food is always romantic. HAVE A GAME NIGHT Create a fun at-home competition by playing a series of tabletop or video games. Keep a scoreboard of who wins; at the end of the night, declare one of you the ultimate gaming champion. You can even play for prizes, e.g., the loser takes out the trash for a week or winner gets to pick the next five movies. Make it fun, flirty, and a little competitive, and this date might become one of your new favorites. MINI GOLF Mini golf is a cheap date filled with lots of cute kissing and selfie opportunities along the course. This is another date where the two of you can get a little competitive and play for a grand prize. Don’t forget to laugh and enjoy yourself along the way. GO CAMPING If you want to create the perfect weekend getaway on a budget, consider camping. The two of you can take walks hand in hand, roast marshmallows over the fire, and lay on your back looking at the stars. It’s a great way to add romance to your weekend while you unplug from social media and appreciate the simpler things in life. A fun and romantic date doesn’t have to cost a fortune. It’s the thought and the company that counts. Choose one (or several) dates from this list if you’re looking for a way to shake things up without breaking the bank. n lexingtonlife.com
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 59
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Just three miles west of Lexington High School 3334 Augusta Hwy. Gilbert, SC 29054 (803) 356-9770 Hours: 9am - 5pm
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Do I Need a SLEEP STUDY? by Michael Landing
Sleep is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle. If you aren’t sleeping well, it is possible you have a disorder that is preventing you from doing so. Many areas of your life are negatively affected by poor sleep habits, including your health, energy levels, brain functioning, productivity, mood levels, and interpersonal relationships. How well you are sleeping determines your ability to enjoy life completely. Sleep problems are not easily diagnosed during a routine doctor’s visit, primarily because patients are typically awake and alert during the appointment. Even if you do mention feeling tired, a clear diagnosis cannot be made at the time. A wide variety of other issues can cause sleepiness, including stress, medication, aging, and not getting enough sleep due to a busy schedule. If you aren’t sleeping well, notice that your behavior and/or mood have changed considerably, and you have questions about your sleeping habits, it may be a good idea to begin a sleep jour62 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
nal and to follow up with a sleep specialist about the possibility that you have a disorder. General Symptoms of Sleep Disorders The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has identified several symptoms that indicate you may benefit from a sleep study to determine whether or not a sleep-related problem exists. They include: • Nightly snoring • Never feeling refreshed upon waking up • Feeling sleepy throughout the day • Difficulty remaining alert during the daytime • Inability to adapt sleeping patterns and daily functioning to changes in work shifts For patients experiencing sleep-related breathing disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea or central sleep apnea, the most lexingtonlife.com
• Having difficulty getting your body to move when you initially wake up • Experiencing a tingling sensation as though something is crawling inside of your legs when you are trying to fall asleep • Feeling weakness in your muscles when you experience intense emotions such as fear or anger • Experiencing jerking movement of your legs or arms while sleeping Children and Sleep Disorders It is possible for infants and children of all ages to have a sleep disorder. If you notice any of the common symptoms in your child, call a specialist for a consultation to evaluate the situation and come up with an effective plan that will help your child sleep more peacefully. Some of the symptoms you may notice in your child include: • Excessive daytime sleepiness • Witnessed apneas during sleep • Nighttime gasping • Nighttime choking • Intermittent snoring • Changes in mood, including irritability and depression
obvious symptoms include loud snoring, chocking sounds, or gasping for breath. It is also possible for the individual to stop breathing temporarily during an apneic episode. Commonly Seen Side Effects of Having a Sleep Disorder The type of sleep disorder you have determines your symptoms as well. The most common symptoms or signs that you have a sleep disorder include: • Difficulty falling asleep that lasts 30 or more minutes • Experiencing vivid dreams before you fall asleep, particularly right before you fall asleep • Waking up during sleep and having difficulty falling back asleep • Being unable to go back to sleep after being awakened during sleep • Feeling the need to drink caffeinated beverages during the day to remain awake • Falling asleep in five minutes or less, particularly during the day • Feeling the need to take a nap on a regular basis • Feeling sleepy throughout the majority of your waking hours, even if you have napped lexingtonlife.com
Types of Sleep Disorders According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, more than 80 sleep disorders have been discovered to date. Most of these disorders fall into one of the following categories: • Insomnia • Sleep-related breathing disorders • Central disorders of hypersomnolence • Circadian rhythm sleep-wake disorders • Insufficient sleep disorders Dangers of Undiagnosed Sleep Problems In addition to feeling tired, people who have undiagnosed sleep disorders often experience other issues. In particular, several studies have linked sleep disorders to certain medical conditions. While more research needs to be completed to reach conclusive results, lack of sleep has also been associated with the following medical issues: • Heart failure • Stroke • High blood pressure • Kidney disease • Diabetes • Obesity • Depression It’s important to get an accurate diagnosis not only so you can improve your sleeping habits but also to improve the quality of your life. Now is a good time to schedule a sleep consultation with a specialist. Doing so may help you avoid unnecessary medical complications. March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 63
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Why You May Need a Sleep Study Even if you’ve provided a list of your symptoms and a medical review, more information is needed to identify which of the more than 80 sleep disorders you have. The best way to obtain this data is to conduct a sleep study. With the details you provide and the results of your sleep study, a proper diagnosis is made. Once a definitive diagnosis is made, a treatment plan targeting the specific needs of your condition is created. Once your treatment begins, you are on your way to a healthier life, resulting in an enhanced quality of living. What Is a Sleep Study? A sleep study is often recommended to assist in diagnosing a sleep-related disorder. The nocturnal polysomnogram, the traditional in-lab study, is often recommended to help in diagnosing an existing sleep disorder. The test requires an overnight stay and the use of multiple body sensors to collect detailed data that assists your physician in diagnosing the specific sleep disorder you have. Once the diagnosis has been made, your sleep specialist can devise a treatment plan to help manage your disorder and its symptoms. The sleep study collects pertinent information on your snoring habits, eye movements, brain waves, body positioning, and muscle activity in your arms, legs, and jaw. This data provide all of the necessary information to create a successful treatment plan. If you decide a sleep study sounds like a good idea, call a specialist for more details. This simple test may be all that is between you and a good night’s rest. Your primary role during this experience is to sleep. Once it’s over, your specialist can provide options for successful treatment of your sleep-related problems.n
Morningside Keeps the Spring in My Step and a Smile on My Face!
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Like us on Facebook Hours: Mon-Fri: 7:30am – 6pm Sat: 9am – 12pm, Sun: Closed 811 East Main Street, Lexington, SC 29072 • 803.359.1933
March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 65
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FRIED IRISH CABBAGE WITH BACON
Luck of the
1 -12 oz. pkg bacon 1/4 c. bacon drippings 1 small head cabbage, cored and finely chopped ground black pepper to taste Cook bacon in a deep skillet over medium heat until crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove bacon from skillet and drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Reserve 1/4 cup drippings in skillet. Cook and stir cabbage in hot bacon drippings over medium heat until cabbage wilts, 5 to 7 minutes. Crumble bacon over cabbage. Stir and simmer until bacon is warmed, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with black pepper.
SLOW COOKER CORNED BEEF AND CABBAGE 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into matchstick pieces 10 baby red potatoes, quartered 1 onion, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces 4 c. water 1- 4 lb. corned beef brisket with spice packet 6 oz. beer 1/2 head cabbage, coarsely chopped Place the carrots, potatoes, and onion into the bottom of a slow cooker, pour in the water, and place the brisket on top of the vegetables. Pour the beer over the brisket. Sprinkle on the spices from the packet, cover, and set the cooker on High. Cook the brisket for about 8 hours. An hour before serving, stir in the cabbage and cook for 1 more hour.
and transfer kale and leeks to a blender. Add white parts of the green onions and 2 more tablespoons butter; blend until smooth, scraping down sides as needed, 1 to 3 minutes. Stir pureed kale mixture into the bowl of potatoes and continue to mash. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Add cream and stir until desired texture. Top with 2 tablespoons butter and green parts of the green onions.
IRISH PEANUT BUTTER POTATO CANDY 1 potato, peeled and chopped 1-32 oz. pkg confectionersâ€™ sugar 1/4 c. creamy peanut butter, or as needed Place potato into a saucepan with enough water to cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook potato until very tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and allow to steam dry for a minute or two. Transfer potato to a large bowl and mash with a fork until smooth. Gradually stir confectionersâ€™ sugar into mashed potato a little at a time until the mixture forms a stiff dough. The dough will be runny until all the powdered sugar is used. Place a large square of waxed paper onto a work surface. Roll or press dough into a 12-inch square rectangle on the waxed paper. Spread peanut butter over top of dough, covering it entirely. Pick up one edge of waxed paper and start rolling the dough to make a 12-inch-long log. Wrap log tightly with waxed paper. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Unwrap log and slice candy into cross-sectional pieces about 3/4-inch thick to serve.
COLCANNON 3 large russet potatoes, peeled and quartered 2 tbsp. butter at room temperature 4 oz. kale, trimmed and chopped 1 leek, light parts only, rinsed and chopped 1 bunch green onions, chopped, white and green parts separated 2 tbsp. butter at room temperature salt and ground black pepper to taste 1/4 c. heavy whipping cream 2 tbsp. butter, for serving 1/4 c. green onions to garnish Boil potatoes in a large pot of salted water until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and transfer potatoes to a large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons butter and lightly mash the potatoes. Boil kale and leeks in a large pot of water until tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Drain 68 | LEXINGTON LIFE | March 2020
Put Your Heart in Good Hands
Joining together to provide world-class care you can trust. For nearly 10 years, our skilled cardiologists and surgeons have renewed the lives of people in South Carolina. Today, we’re caring for you as Lexington Medical Heart and Vascular Center. Lexington Cardiology, Lexington Cardiovascular Surgery and vascular surgeons William Moore, MD, and Terry Norton, MD, have formed a specialized team and now share one convenient location. We’re here to provide you with collaborative and comprehensive medical care. • The region’s only Duke Health-affiliated heart program
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We offer compassionate, life-saving care close to home, so put your heart in our experienced hands.
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It’s YOUR story.
Each of us has a story. Decide how yours will be told. Planning your final arrangements allows you to be the author of the closing chapter of your life. Through the use of innovative technology, you can create a multi-sensory experience that will enhance your storytelling. Our licensed funeral directors and cremation specialists will help you design a personalized and meaningful service so you can share the unfolding of your life’s journey.
Don’t let someone else write it. Our doors and our hearts are open everyday — as well as in your time of need. We invite you to call or stop by to pick up your own free personal planning guide. West Columbia 200 State Street (803) 791-0650
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The Beginning of Wisdom Khaki the Second is just shy of a year and a half old. Those of you who remember your own childhood -- and those who’ve watched dogs grow up -- know that a year and a half in dog-years is the beginning of what we will call “A Young Dog’s Glory Days.” These Glory Days are when young dogs of all descriptions still loll around on the ground and play, but are also just beginning to wake up to other ideas. The Young Dog learns to really run about this period of time. The real run begins as a comedy of long legs not quite working together and ending in a furry, tumbling heap. But then one day, he spots a good-size buck deer loping across the back field. Last Saturday I was rubbing Khaki’s ears when two deer loped across the field in front of us. Khaki didn’t wait to consider the impossibility of covering the hundred-yard distance in time to catch the deer. He didn’t consider what he might conceivably do with a rack full of antlers if he did manage to catch the deer. He simply whirred through the clover with his legs stretched out as far as they could go. It was beautiful to watch him run flat out. I knew at that moment that his puppy days were just about over. All young dogs are instilled with a firm conviction enabling them to completely ignore things like distance and consequences. Later they discover it wasn’t conviction, exactly, but rather ignorance of their existence. My Daddy and I had a conversation when I was about 1.5 Dog Years about jumping my bike over a ditch at the bottom of an embankment. Daddy addressed my planned Ditch-Conquering with a simple question: “You sure you want to do that, son?” I was a Proud Young Dog and insisted that yes, indeed, I did want to “do that.” Daddy quietly squatted down: “Okay, son. Go ahead, I want to see this.” Daddy took his time walking down the embankment after he determined I was still alive. He looked at me. “You alright, son?” I pulled myself out of the dirt and sat up. Daddy checked over the bike, and chuckled: “Well, looks like the bike made it.” I was about Two Dog Years old when Daddy asked his simple question for the fourth time. I have no idea what I was proposing, but there was that simple question: “You sure you want to do that, son?” I sat back in silence, and thought to myself: “Maybe not. Maybe I need to think about this a little longer.”
David Clark writes and works in Cochran, GA. Connect with him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Daddy never told me not to do it, whatever it was. He knew telling me not to was the surest way to have me do the thing I was proposing. After four times of crashing into a heap, his question finally achieved its goal: Daddy’s son was starting to actually think, just a little bit. It was a beginning, anyway. n March 2020 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 71
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