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Celebrating, Empowering, Inspiring... the Women of Omaha.

YogatheRocks Park Habitat for Humanity’s Women Build June/July 2011 •

Cancer Survivor Stories Complimentary, Take and Share In support of:

Omaha Magazine • 5921 S. 118th Circle • Omaha, NE 68137



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June/July 2011, Volume 10 / Issue 3


June/July 2011 Feature .................... 8 Best Careers for 2011 Feature .................. 10 Habitat For Humanity’s Women Build

Celebrating, Empowering, Inspiring... the Women of Omaha. published by

omaha magazine, ltd

Photo Feature ....... 12 Summer Breezes


todd lemke m a n a g i n g e d i t o r, o m a h a p u b l i c a t i o n s

Cover Feature ....... 19 Bring Your Mat to Midtown, Yoga Rocks The Park

corey ross editor

linda persigehl art director

john gawley graphic designer

katie anderson principle photography by

minor white studios, inc s c o t t d r i c k e y, b i l l s i t z m a n n , colin conces guest photographer

christian behr contributors

sandy lemke • suzanne smith arney susan meyers • judy gilliard stephanie vondrak, d.d.s. darcie dingman • angelika stout wca • girl scouts • alicia smith hollins account executives

gwen lemke • vick i voet greg bruns • gil cohen alicia smith-hollins stacey penrod • paige edwards warehouse distribution manager

mike brewer

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Send $9.95 for a one-year subscription (six issues) to P.O. Box 461208, Papillion, NE 68046-1208. Comments? Story Ideas? Send your letter to the editor: letters@ Her Magazine is a community magazine. A special community of women. Please enjoy and share your issue of Her. Our advertisers make Her possible. So make sure to thank and support them as often as you can. Do you know a woman role model, mentor, activist, leader, artist, business owner, model, adventurer, survivor, or volunteer? Let us know and we may share her story with the Her community of women. Her is your magazine; for the women of Metropolitan Omaha.

Her Art ............................................ 6 Pamela Patton, A Message in Flowers Her Dental Health . ......................... 9 Is Your Glass Half Full, Or Half Empty? Auto Tips For Her........................... 11 Buying a Used Car DIY . ................................................ 17 Easy Frames, Meaningful Gifts Beauty Sheet ..................................18 Healthy Hair Highlights Health Extra . ................................. 21 Cold Sore Relief Health Focus ..................................23 Survivor Stories: Coping With Cancer and the Road After A Letter from Girl Scouts...............28 A Lifetime of Inspiration A Letter from WCA..........................29 WCA Grows from YWCA Food With Flair...............................30 Grill, Baby, Grill!

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Owned and managed by Omaha Magazine, LTD

Her Magazine is published bi-monthly by Omaha Magazine, LTD, P.O. Box 461208, Omaha, NE 68046. No whole or part of the contents herein may be reproduced without prior written permission of Omaha Magazine, LTD, excepting individually copyrighted articles and photographs. Unsolicited manuscripts are accepted, however no responsibility will be assumed for such solicitations.

Check us Out on Facebook and Find Out How to Subscribe and get a 50% discount. Search for Omaha Magazine. WWW.READONLINENOW.COM • June/July 2011 • HER 3


Editor Linda Persigehl

Dear Readers,


n a recent drive to work, I came upon a marvelous sun shower. First, there was just rain, but within a few minutes, rays of sunshine began to stream through the clouds, illuminating the gloomy sky even while raindrops continued to fall. I was struck by how this short run of events perfectly illustrates a life lesson: When tough times come, and your world looks like all rain, don’t give up hope. Sunshine might be lurking just behind the clouds, ready to pop out at any time. The women featured in “Survivor Stories: Coping with Cancer and the Road After” (pg. 23) are perfect examples of how a positive outlook makes a huge difference. Faced with the challenge of beating cancer, they decided to be strong and optimistic, and made it through the storm. These brave women know there may still be rain ahead, but they’re committed to fighting this disease with a smile on their faces. You’ll find more inspiration in our feature on Women Build (pg. 10), the Habitat for Humanity program that puts women to work constructing a home for a family in need. For the ladies who participate, this annual community effort has become not only a way to give back, but also a means of building some strong female friendships - not to mention what all that hammering can do to tone up those arms!

C o m p l e t e l aw n C a r e


If you’re looking for another way to stay in shape, read about Yoga Rocks the Park (pg. 19), the summer-long event planned for Midtown Crossing (for which HER is a sponsor!) Music, meditation and muscle-toning, all in the great outdoors! You’ll also find great gift-making ideas in our Do-it-yourself feature on page 17, and fun, flirty dresses to spend your summer days in in our fashion segment (pgs. 12-16). Lastly, a special thanks to DJ Tres and Lora Haase for being our cover models for this issue! Let’s hope we see many more warm, beautiful bluesky days, like the one we had for this photo shoot in May, all summer long!

Linda Persigehl Editor

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w w w. O m a h a F r i e n d l y S e r v i c e s . c o m 4 HER • June/July 2011 •

Original Artwork by Local and Regional Artists



What You Seek...

Dundee Gallery is where you’ll find just the right piece to express your personality – and your good taste!



Tuesday - Friday 11-9 Sat 10-9 • Sun 12-5

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Sundays, 4pm. May 29 through July 24 at Midtown Crossing’s Turner Park Dj/Live Music with Yoga for the Whole Family Presented by: Spiritual Gangster, Alegent Health, Health Source Chiropractic and Rehab of Omaha, Lotus House of Yoga, The Omaha Yoga School, Hyp Yoga, One Tree Yoga & Omaha Magazine. WWW.READONLINENOW.COM • June/July 2011 • HER



Pamela Patton

A Message in Flowers


hen her mother refused to rush out and buy her modeling clay, five-year-old Pamela made the first choice of her career as an artist—she ran away from home. Soon captured, she became a child who drew instead of shaping things. And learning to draw, training her hand and her eye for nuance, she learned to model the illusion of dimensionality on a flat surface. Her “classroom” for these lessons was the outdoors, the hills of Bellevue, and the wildflowers which covered those hills. “My mother taught me the common names and all the characteristics of the plants that she knew,” says Patton. “She would take me outside in the spring and show me the snowdrops and Dutchman’s britches.” Patton and her siblings enjoyed a childhood enriched by an extended and historic family, a home in which the arts were welcome, and freedom to roam outdoors. “The world was opened to me through my eyes more than any other of my senses,” she says, and she views her art as a natural extension of that response. In watercolor, combining the particularity of drawing and the depth of color, she finds her clearest artistic voice.

6 HER • June/July 2011 •

Meeting Patton in her Hot Shops studio, you see a woman who is not only an artist but artistic. Everything about her is consciously chosen, composed for overall harmony and effect; she is, in a way, her own canvas. Like her painstakingly colored roses, however, the surface serves the interior. It is lit with an inner radiance. Her manner is calm, direct. “I have a deep faith,” she says. “I am a created being, and flowers are also created. My work acknowledges—praises—that creation.” Each of the framed florals, nature studies, and landscapes in her studio seems perfect. Patton captures the ideal moment, but doesn’t idealize. Although Patton photographs flowers to precisely study their structure, she always draws from life. Indicating a filed sketch of a columbine, she says, “I have to wait until it blooms again.” Patton’s process is methodical and painstaking. Using her photographic references, measurements, and notes, she makes a detailed pencil sketch. Color charts are pinned to the wall and fill notebooks. One color for a blossom may have as many

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as eight tones, and these are subtly multiplied as Patton carefully layers, blends an edge, or neighbors a warmer or cooler shade. With all the variables determined, the sketch is transferred to watercolor paper and the painting begins. Watercolor is an unforgiving medium, requiring patience and surety. A sign of her success is “October Geraniums,” chosen for inclusion in the book Splash 11-New Directions: The Best of Watercolor (2010). Geraniums fill the canvas with their scarlet petals and dancing leaves. More typical of her current style is a single stem; roses are her favorites, and they’re shown in every color from delicate coral to crimson. Her desire to portray a single flower at its peak is not because Patton denies or fears pain and struggle. She knows well the cycles that life brings to all of its creatures. The decision came about after caring for her brother, Stephen, during his struggle with terminal cancer. “It’s a metaphor for the beauty and brevity of life,” she says. About 20 years ago, Patton combined her color knowledge and her need for fine framing into a business, Robinwood Custom Framing (, which has moved into the Hot Shops storefront. Patton’s original watercolors, giclée prints, and note cards are available at the Hot Shops. The cards are also available at Lauritzen Gardens gift shop. For more about Patton - On view now in two group shows: Resident Artists Show in Gallery 1301 at the Hot Shops, through June 26 ( Summer Exhibition, Glacial Till Winery, Ashland, through July 31 (

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feature story by Linda Persigehl photos by minorwhite studios

Best Careers for 2011 T

hese days, with college tuition climbing and unemployment remaining high, it pays to do some research when choosing a career. Spending years training for a job that won’t be there when you graduate just doesn’t make sense. Neither does quitting your current job to make a career change, only to learn companies in that field are laying off, not hiring. But with the economy making a slow comeback, job opportunities are growing in some fields. We asked Omaha staffing professionals which positions they were seeing the most demand for, and in particular, which jobs offered the best career opportunities for women.

Sales Manager Patty North, a regional manager with Celebrity Staffing, said she’s seen a surge in interest in the hiring of sales professionals, and in particular sales managers. “This is a sign of a good market economy…of core consumer 8 HER • June/July 2011 •

confidence. It means employers are optimistic, and they need additional salespeople to sell their products and support that demand.” While employers generally prefer those with a bachelor’s degree (a general degree is fine; business or finance degrees are not required) to fill sales manager positions, in many cases candidates without degrees but with experience and/or the right skill sets are being hired. And “experience” is not exclusive to job history, particularly with women. “Employers are recognizing that women get a lot of their skills and experience through volunteer work…organizing events, leading committees, fundraising…and more than ever, they’re open to seeing that experience as relevant in the workforce.” Sales positions that offer flexibility — allow you to set your own schedule, work from home, and work as little or as much as you want to — are especially appealing to working moms.

HER DENTAL HEALTH Story by Stephanie Vondrak, D.D.S.

Customer Relations Positions in client services, or customer relations as it’s often called, have grown by leaps and bounds both in numbers and in responsibilities, North said. “Fifteen years ago, Omaha was a call-center mecca, and inbound customer service reps worked with scripted material. Today, the relationships [service reps] have with customers is much more interactive and sometimes longterm. (Reps) help customers solve complicated problems, some of which require research and follow-up calls.” As with sales positions, employers are looking more to job experience and skill sets than for a degree when hiring to fill client relations positions. Problem-solving skills, the ability to communicate, and other skills necessary to the job can often be found in women, who hone these skills balancing work and family, raising kids, caring for senior parents, volunteering, etc. And in some cases, customer relations jobs can be worked from home, offering working mothers flexibility not found in other jobs. Medical Billing /Coding It’s no surprise that a growing demand for healthcare and changes in healthcare regulations, insurance and new legislation is driving up demand for medical billing professionals. “Billing has become so complex…understanding explanation of benefits statements and submitting insurance to companies….there are now schools that offer medical billing training and certification programs,” North said. Most programs take 12 to 18 months to complete, and certification is becoming more valued by medical practices, she added. Such jobs may serve as a stepping stone into healthcare administration, another career field seeing steady growth. Information Systems Professional According to Chris Carlson, regional manager with Aureus Group, demand for information systems professionals continues to grow as companies look more and more to technology to help improve their operations. “We’re very lucky here in Omaha because we’re home to a world-class lab center, the Peter Kiewit Institute,” Carlson said. “PKI gives students the opportunity to apply their training in the real world thanks to partnerships with the business community. A lot of great talent in this area is coming out of that school.” Carlson said even entry-level junior programmers can make $35-$40,000 a year, and

with experience, salaries jump into six digits, making this career choice a solid one for men and women alike. Accountant Changes in business regulation and tax law, along with the growing role of accountants in most businesses today, have contributed to a growing demand for CPAs and other finance professionals. No longer are they simply keeping the books and making payroll; today’s accountants are in charge of internal auditing, financial reporting, consulting management, and many other duties. Carlson said “Big Four” companies, including Deloitte &Touche, as well as smaller accounting firms are hiring women in record numbers. “They’re the fastest growing demographic in the industry. Companies are recognizing women are excelling in their positions, so they’re enhancing job flexibility to attract more women, and even promoting them to leadership positions. We saw the first female partner in a Big Four firm in 2011.” Registered Nurse Machael Durham, owner and president of Durham Staffing Solutions in Omaha, said the increase in demand for registered nurses is the most prevalent trend she’s seen in recent months. Driving this demand is our aging population, and growing demand for healthcare services. A Bachelor of Science degree in nursing is typically required of RNs, though some schools do offer associate degrees in the field. A strong starting salary and advancement opportunities make nursing a solid career choice. And while the work can be intense and physically demanding at times, it’s also very rewarding and well-suited to many women, to whom multi-tasking and caregiving comes naturally. Other Careers On The Rise Durham said other employment positions seeing strong job growth right now include pharmacists, human resource managers, attorneys, and in particular, real estate account executives. “The growth of corporate relocation of employees both nationally and internationally is driving demand for real estate account execs,” she said. “These positions are appealing to women as many of these firms offer a familyfriendly environment, strong career advancement and recognition.”

Is your glass half full, or half empty?


e all experience less-than-ideal events in our day. For example, last Monday morning I stopped for my routine skinny vanilla latte and much to my dismay, the store was dark and empty.  Clearly the delightful young barista that usually greets me had overslept and I would miss my muchanticipated morning treat.  Already 10 minutes behind schedule, I reached over to the passenger seat to discover my son’s forgotten permission slip as well as the absence of my cell phone. It was only 6:45 a.m. and this Monday was off to a challenging start. Events such as these are not tragic or horrible.  We can all relate.  The importance lies in how we as individuals cope with the annoyances of life. Medical research has linked attributes such as a good perspective and positive thinking to preventing disease and maintaining health.  In fact, those who choose to look at “the glass as half full” tend to be more productive and live healthier lifestyles!  Additionally, research has shown you can increase your life span, toughen your resistance to the common cold, and decrease your chance of a heart attack just by staying positive.  In dentistry, my experience has been that dental restorations (crowns and fillings) last longer in health-centered, positive people.  Why?  A person with a positive outlook experiences less distress in stressful situations.  Stressful situations often lead to clenching and grinding of teeth and inadequate brushing and flossing.  By controlling the stresses in our lives, our attitudes toward health and wellness improve.  So, the next time someone cuts you off in traffic or you lose your car keys, how will you respond?   What will your first reaction be?  My advice is think healthy, think happy, and remember… your glass is half full !

More information about Vondrak Dental can be found at



feature story by Angelika stout photos by John Gawley

Women Build

Habitat for Humanity Program Creates Homes and Friendships


tool belts and take up your hammers—Habitat for Humanity of Omaha’s Women Build 2011 is in full swing. adies , fasten your

The 14th annual Women Build season kicked off Mother’s Day weekend. Every year, thousands of women unite to help fight poverty housing around the world, and you can get involved right here in Omaha. Women Build is a summer-long homebuilding program that’s unique in that the construction crews are made up entirely of women. That’s right, every part of the construction process is accomplished by all-female crews. No construction experience is necessary 10 HER • June/July 2011 •

Auto tips for her Story by Darcie Dingman, Dingman’s Collision Center

Future homeowner Antoinette, in green, with daughter, Jihada, in the red and black-striped shirt, and grandson Jihlen

Buying A Used Car


going up, along with pretty much everything else. Used cars can be a great value, but they can also be lemons! Many people think to get used cars checked out by a mechanic, but what about a collision repair professional? An untrained eye may not see all that could affect you in the future. The following tips should help when looking for a used car: Look at the vehicle in good light. The vehicle should also be clean so that you’re able to clearly see the paint and any imperfections in the finish. The color on all of the panels should match, and there should not be ripples in the metal. Check the gaps in the panels to make sure that they are even, top to bottom and side to side. It’s time to get hands on. Inside the vehicle, feel around on the floor boards and in the trunk area. Random bulges or bumps may be signs of trouble. Having a professional look at it may be helpful, as this may be a bit confusing. Take a test drive. Does the car pull to one side? This could mean that it needs a simple wheel alignment. However, it could be something more serious such as suspension problems or structural issues. You don’t want to pay more than a vehicle is worth, or have to spend money unexpectedly for damage you were unaware of. Most importantly, you don’t want there to be safety issues that could truly affect you and your family. Not everything on every car can be caught, but it’s truly in your best interest to have a vehicle thoroughly checked out before purchasing. as prices are

to participate and many skills are taught on site. (However, Habitat does offer a series of workshops on construction basics, including drywalling, framing, painting, siding and roofing every April for those looking to hone their skills.) Habitat Director Amanda Brewer says Women Build “gives women an opportunity to do all facets of the construction process . . . and it’s really empowering.” And the result of all of your hard work, time and effort? A brick-and-mortar house for a family in need! Women Build’s efforts have helped to provide over 1,800 homes to poverty-stricken families around the world. On the crew sites, you’ll find the homeowners building right alongside the women crews, as every homeowner is required to complete 350 sweat equity hours before taking ownership of the house. A ceremony is held after the final details are finished to dedicate the home to the family. “I am moved to the core every time I attend a Habitat Home Dedication. The ceremony is beautiful, plus there is nothing but smiles on everyone’s faces,” says Lisa Lackovic, 2011 Habitat Board Chairman. This special ceremony celebrates the sense of pride and accomplishment Habitat families feel in their new home. In addition to the required sweat equity hours, all partner families continue their partnership with Habitat by maintaining a 30-year, zerointerest mortgage. And some continue their relationships with Habitat by continuing to give back to the community. Lackovic recalls the inspirational story of a Habitat homeowner; “She now serves on our board and has built

her career at a local bank and raised a loving family. . . I was moved to tears when she told her story. She is truly a living example of how Habitat for Humanity can offer a ‘hand-up’ with zero-interest loans and help turn people’s lives around.” Thousands of people, volunteers and partner families alike, have had their lives positively impacted by Women Build and Habitat for Humanity. Brewer says the most rewarding part is “you get to see lives change, the volunteers’ and the families’.” Often, new friendships are built and old ones are renewed on the construction site. Norma Fletcher, a long-time Women Build volunteer who has helped to complete 12 homes since 1999, recalls past builds: “There are many memories of times working with other ladies, enjoying conversations while we work at our tasks. . . I have made some great friendships through Habitat that get renewed every building season.” Women Build is about empowering and including women to fight the poverty-housing crisis. A great way to get involved is to volunteer with a group you are already a part of, such as your book club, knitting circle or even a corporate team. Although the Women Build 2011 season has officially started, it’s not too late to get involved this year. Construction work continues every weekend through Sept. 30. To learn more about Women Build or to sign up for a shift, go to

If you have any questions about your vehicle or need advice, please visit our website at



photos by christian behr | story by linda persigehl 12 HER • June/July 2011 •

summer breezes

from souq, ltd

When the heat and humidity hit, there’s nothing better than a flirty, flowy summer dress to keep you cool and comfortable. We love them all, from modern halter dresses to strappy sundresses to maxi dresses. Mix in some floral prints and colorful patterns and add metallic accents and chunky jewelry and you have a modern look that can’t fail.

Jamie, a student from Elkhorn, and Jenae, an Iowa transplant with her own Omaha marketing firm, were our models for this fashion shoot in Omaha’s Old Market. All the fashions were provided courtesy of downtown’s Souq. Visiting the downtown district is a favorite pastime, said Jenae. “I love to shop here, and it’s great to people-watch.”

Jamie wears a flowing green halter dress with tiered ruffles and

Jenae models a heather

a floral print. A wide

pink ruffle-sleeve dress

brown belt, a leather

with a cowl neck and

cord necklace, an Anne

ballooning skirt, $49.

Koplik rhinestone neck-

Cinched at the waist

lace and a Rodrigo Otazu

is a black elasticized

necklace accessorize this sexy summer look.

belt, with golden blackbirds at the clasp, $19.



Jamie wears a colorful

sleeveless dress with a

draping neckline and

modern print, $59, layered

with a woven and beaded

biker vest, $85, and a

balled-wire necklace.

14 HER • June/July 2011 •

Jenae models a pink and

black floral sundress,

$45, paired with a silver-

studded belt and funky

chunky bead necklace.



Jenae wears a multi-

striped wrap dress

trimmed in black, $45,

metallic wedge san-

dals and a rhinestone

pendant necklace.

16 HER • June/July 2011 •


story by Alicia smith hollins photo by John Gawley

I shot and custom-framed two photos of two of her best wedding memories: her first dance with her new husband, and her dance with our dad, and “bookended” them around the invite. (See supporting picture.) Recently, my cousin was married in Hawaii. Because I was unable to attend, I asked her for a photo of her bouquet. I was able to find silk flowers that perfectly matched those in her bouquet, then hot-glued the flowers as a border around her “save the date” card and wedding invitation in a shadowbox frame. It turned out beautifully. I’ve even put my custom-framing skills to use making gifts for other occasions. For Father’s Day, I framed a newspaper article about my grandfather from the 1950s along with an old photograph of him. (This one got tricky, as the article was very delicate. Tip: an acid-free glue stick (Elmer’s) on acid-free paper works better than tape, as tape will rip the article.) When I had my son, Logan, people would often ask me who the baby looks like, me or my husband. So I came up with the perfect nursery frame project: Place the baby’s picture in the middle of a frame with three holes cut in the matting, then tape a baby picture of the mother on one side, and one of the father on the other. You will be able to see how the baby’s and parents’ features match up. My all-time favorite frame project, however, was for my grandparents’ 50th anniversary. It shows their wedding picture and 50th anniversary picture. Things Remembered engraved their last name on a placard at the bottom, and the years of each picture on top. It’s still a great reminder of a wonderful couple. What started out as a means to save some money has become a huge creative outlet for me. Everyone in my family now expects one of my trademark framing projects for their wedding gift. They love them because they’re so personal, and they help preserve memories with items they didn’t even know were worth saving.

Easy Frames, Meaningful Gifts


few summers ago, upon being invited to the nuptials of five couples, I decided to start hand-making my own wedding gifts. The invites themselves were my inspiration. Brides spend hours finding the best invite to suit their style and set the tone for their wedding, then mail them out with such loving care. And then what happens to them a few weeks later? Guests typically throw them away, and the bride, caught up in the ensuing chaos, usually forgets to save an invite as a keepsake. Voilá! I had my idea: custom-frame their invitation for their wedding gift! Plus, by making the gifts myself, I’d save money. The surprised bride would never even know I’d only spent $25-40. The first step in the process is to choose a frame. Good deals on frames can be found at craft stores such as Michael’s or Hobby Lobby, and at department stores like Kohl’s. If you’re familiar with the wedding couple’s home, choose a frame that goes well with their furniture and décor. Another option is to pick a frame that

matches the style of the invitation. Some frames will come with matting cut to fit a standardsize invite. This will help you save more money. However, since invitations have evolved and now come in all shapes and sizes, standard matting may not work. In that case, Hobby Lobby will cut matting affordably and (usually) while you wait. (My attempts at cutting my own matting with an Exacto knife have always ended in a costly disaster – don’t try this!) In some cases, I have chosen colored matting to match the script color on the invite or the bride’s wedding colors. Most matting is acid-free so it will protect the invite. When putting together the frame, center the writing and simply tape the invite onto the matting. Then, take acid-free paper and put it in between the frame back and the invite. This will protect the invite for years to come. Finally, secure the back on the frame. Through the years and invites, my creative spark has flourished and I now hand-make all sorts of framing gifts. For my sister’s wedding,



beautysheet story by Linda persigehl

At bangs you can become whatever you want to be: hot mess, rock star, fairy princess, glamorous or sophisticated.

Healthy Hair Highlights


summer’s arrival prompts a quick trip to the salon for much-needed hair highlights. Highlights are a great way to add dimension and shine to flat, dull hair color and give you that sun-kissed look even before you’ve had a chance to take in some rays.

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Here’s some highlighting advice from the pros : Everything goes. Like bold highlights? Go for it! Prefer subtle highlights, mixed with lowlights? Also popular. Professionals say there are no hard, fast rules for highlights these days. Skip the spray-in highlighters and home kits. Over-the-counter products never produce the same quality results that salon products can. And a professional stylist will apply highlights with more precision for a more polished look. Get a free consult. Many stylists offer complementary color consultations, and will custom-blend highlight color to work well with your hair type and complement your natural hair color and skin tone for a customized look. Opt for a few. If you’re looking to cut your hair budget, ask your stylist for just a few highlights to frame your face. You will be amazed at how just a few foils will brighten up your look! Get touch-ups regularly. Schedule a visit every four to six weeks to retouch those highlights, and wait no more than eight weeks. This will ensure you don’t have tell-all dark roots and keep your look fresh all season. Go for color-safe products. Use only color-safe shampoos and conditioners (Pureology products get high ratings) that help your hair retain hair color longer, as well as toning shampoos and conditioners (i.e. AG Sterling Silver) that will keep your tresses from turning orange with time. K eep the moisture in. A monthly leave-in deep conditioner will help keep highlighted hair from drying out, splitting, and even prevent flyaways. Thanks to Amy Smith and Jodi Packett at Beauty First, 78th & Dodge, for contributing to this article.

18 HER • June/July 2011 •

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Bring Your Mat to Midtown

Yoga Rocks The Park


idtown Crossing Turner Park’s expansive green space will be the site of Omaha’s inaugural Yoga Rocks the Park, a weekly yoga and live music festival Sundays May 29 through July 24. Like its sister event in Denver, Omaha’s Yoga Rocks the Park will feature top-notch yoga instruction from local and nationally recognized instructors, such as R.R. Shakti. Omahan Lora Haase, director of Yoga Rocks the Park-Omaha, inspired by the success of Denver’s event, hopes the festival will draw up to 4,000 participants. Said Haase, “We are so excited to bring Yoga Rocks the Park

to Omaha. It’s a festival of live music, community and nature and it unites all yoga traditions across the city. The local yoga and music community have so much to offer Omaha. It’s a great way to come together collectively and give back to our community. We’re happy to see it at Midtown Crossing because it provides an ideal infrastructure for the festival. This is about bringing people together. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never done yoga. It’s about kicking off your shoes with your friends and family.” Yoga Rocks the Park will include family friendly activities as well with its Kids Rock Yoga Camp just steps away from their parents. Kids 3-10 WWW.READONLINENOW.COM • June/July 2011 • HER



will enjoy hula-hooping, face painting and kid-friendly asana instruction from Omaha’s top children’s yoga teachers. Music highlights include loom founder DJ Brent Crampton and Kianna Alarid from Tilly and the Wall. (See sidebar for lineup.) Yoga World Reach Yoga Rocks the Park is a benefit for Yoga World Reach, a nonprofit organization based in Colorado, whose mission is to “educate and empower yoga teachers as together we broaden the possibilities of yoga as service in our local and global communities.” The heart of its mission is its Seva School, a yoga teacher-training program that offers classes nationwide. One class offers training on how to adaptively share yoga with cancer survivors, individuals with disabilities, trauma survivors, expectant mothers and children. The classes consider yoga as a therapy and social service. Sponsors Yoga Rocks the Park hopes to draw upon the well-established yoga community in and

around Omaha, with its independent studios and fitness clubs with yoga classes. Presenting sponsor is Spiritual Gangster, a range of yoga gear. Local sponsors are Alegent Health, HealthSource Chiropractic and Progressive Rehab, Lotus House of Yoga, Hyp Yoga, OneTree Yoga, Sanctuary Day Spa, Omaha Magazine and Midtown Crossing. Schedule DATE Yoga Teacher Musician K ids Camp Yoga Rocks May 29

Mary Clare Sweet

Rhythm Collective

Super Hero Yoga

June 5

Alex Austin


A is for Art Preschool

June 12

Lora Haase

DJ Brent Crampton

Joslyn Art Museum

June 19

Melanie McLeod

Heather & Calla


June 26

Jen Chiarelli

DJ Tres

A is for Art Preschool

July 3

r.r. Shakti


No YRP Kids Camp

July 10

Carly Cummings

Lyndsey Donovan


July 17

Carole Westerman

Omaha Drummers

A is for Art Preschool

July 24

Libba Harmon

Kianna Alarid

Super Hero Yoga

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re your lips tingling, burning or itching? Many of us recognize these as the telltale signs of another embarrassing cold sore. Cold sores are small, liquid-filled blisters usually around the mouth, on the lips, or on the chin. Approximately 20 to 30 percent of adults are affected by these painful sores, so you’re not alone. Cold sores, also called fever blisters, are caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus, usually type 1, and can even be accompanied by a fever or sore throat. Fever blisters are contagious and are spread through contact with the infected area. The painful symptoms of cold sores can last from seven to 10 days, but that time can be shortened with over-the-counter treatments. After the sore breaks and oozes, a scab or crust will form and fall away within a few days, leaving behind nothing but fresh skin. Although cold sores can be treated, they can never be “cured.” After an initial infection, the virus lies dormant in your system and an outbreak can be triggered at any time. Aggravating factors, such as rising stress levels, sun exposure, fatigue, and even low immunity defenses can trigger a cold sore outbreak. If you find yourself suffering from one of these embarrassing sores, here are some helpful tips from Dr. Melissa Thebarge, a family practice physician with Methodist Health System: • Once you identify a cold sore, start an over-the-counter treatment, or set up an appointment with your doctor. • Avoid sharing silverware or glasses and kissing others until the sore completely heals. Try not to touch the infected area. • Use Tylenol, Motrin or even saltwater gargles for general discomfort and pain relief. Over-the-counter medications may help to lessen the length of the outbreak. • If your symptoms last for seven days without improvement, you should see your family physician. • To prevent future outbreaks, work on controlling stress levels and boosting your immune system. Try increasing your vitamin C intake, and take a daily multivitamin.



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story By Susan Meyers photos by

Survivor Stories: Coping with Cancer and the Road After


11 million Americans are living with cancer. Being a cancer survivor and living with the fear that it could return is never easy. How people cope with the emotional and physical challenges of cancer survivorship is as individual as each person. These women share their stories of how they find strength and courage to face each new day. ore than

Joan Robinson, Cancer Survivor

Joan Robinson Seventy-two-year-old Joan Robinson is a two-time cancer survivor. She was diagnosed and treated for ovarian cancer 16 years ago and was cancer-free until two years ago, when her annual mammogram found a lump in her left breast. The shock and fear that came with her first diagnosis all came racing back. “Even though so much time had passed, it was still devastating news,” says Robinson. Memories of her first treatment for ovarian cancer f lashed through her mind. Could she do it again? Did she want to do it again? She began to have second thoughts. But Robinson’s family rallied around her and helped her summon the strength and courage to wage a second battle against cancer. Her son, an Omaha attorney, accompanied her to every appointment. “He was my source of strength,” says Robinson. “I’m older now and needed a little more help. I don’t think I could have done it without him and the support of the rest of my family.” As it turned out, the second time around was much easier than the first. Surgery, which involved a lumpectomy, wasn’t nearly as debilitating as a hysterectomy. The chemotherapy and radiation treatments were also easier to tolerate. “The treatment “I’m older now and needed a wasn’t nearly as painful and neither were the side effects,” she says. The desire to see her 10-year-old granddaughter grow up also kept her going. little more help. I don’t think I “She gave me a reason to keep fighting,” says Robinson. could have done it without him Gamini S. Soori, MD, oncologist at Nebraska Cancer Specialists, says Robinson’s family support, as well as her optimistic attitude, were key in help(her son) and the support of the ing her achieve a positive outcome. “When someone is confronted with cancer, rest of my family.” it is natural to feel depressed and overwhelmed,” says Soori. “Having a spirit of optimism and working hard to confront the disease is very important in getting — Joan Robinson continued on next page




well. You need to be just as motivated and vigorous in fighting cancer the second time around. I’ve had many patients who have been cured not just once or twice but are on their third or fourth cancers. Those who put all of their effort into fighting the disease, continue to work or stay active and approach cancer optimistically, have the best outcomes.”

DeDra Robb, Breast Cancer Survivor

DeDra Robb DeDra Robb was just 37 when she felt the lump in her breast that wouldn’t go away. A mammogram and ultrasound, followed by a biopsy, confirmed that she did indeed have breast cancer. The news was difficult to swallow. With a five-month-old baby and five- and seven-year-old children, this young mother had a lot to live for. She wasn’t going to let breast cancer steal anything away from her. Robb also had two very close role models. Both her aunt and grandmother were 20- and 40-year survivors of breast cancer. Robb was determined to follow in their footsteps. “When Dr. Lemon asked me if I wanted breast preservation, I told him “When Dr. Lemon asked me that I wanted life preserif I wanted breast preservation, I vation,” says Robb, who decided at the beginning told him that I wanted that she wanted to have life preservation.” a double mastectomy. “I wasn’t taking any chances,” — DeDra Robb

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24 HER • June/July 2011 •

healthfocus “DeDra is a great role model to other women showing that you can beat this disease...She was a fabulous patient who stayed positive and was as aggressive as she could be in beating this.” — Stephen Lemon, MD

she says. “I need to be here for my children.” In January 2010, Robb underwent a double mastectomy. This was followed by four months of chemotherapy and two months of radiation therapy. She was also prescribed a one-year regimen of the drug Herceptin, a monoclonal antibody that works by slowing or halting the growth

of cancer cells that contain large amounts of HER-2. “I was lucky because I didn’t get that sick,” says Robb. “I just plowed through it. I had to. I have three children and the world doesn’t stop for me. My goal was to keep their lives as normal as possible.” Not only did her children give her the strength to fight, but they were also her inspiration. “I had to stay positive for them,” she says. “They were my motivation everyday.” Today Robb continues to take the drug Tamoxifen, an anti-estrogen drug that works by reducing estrogen’s ability to fuel cancer growth. By choosing a double mastectomy, followed by chemotherapy, radiation therapy, Herceptin and Tamoxifen, Robb’s chances of recurrence are less than 10 percent. “I needed to know that I did everything in my power to beat this,” says Robb.

Stephen Lemon, MD, of Oncology Associates, P.C., at Methodist Estabrook Cancer Center and West Dodge Medical Plaza

continued on next page



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says. “I needed something to help me deal with my stress.” Upon the suggestion of a social worker, she found meditation to be just what she needed. “It really helps me relax and clear my mind and you can do it just about anywhere,” she says. Two years after Hauter’s initial diagnosis, her cancer came back. Hauter had her gallbladder removed, followed by more chemotherapy to treat tiny traces of cancer that were found in her abdominal area. Hauter has been receiving intermittent doses of chemotherapy to control the cancer ever since. “It’s not uncommon for patients with ovarian cancer to have long-term chemotherapy,” says Peter Silberstein, MD, Chief of Hematology/Oncology at Creighton University Medical Center. “But despite this, she has had good quality of life. She travels, spends time with family and friends and enjoys life.” Dr. Silberstein says he has been using Lisa Hauter, Gallbladder and Ovarian Cancer Survivor chemotherapy very judiciously. “I call it smart chemo. We only give it if it is actually helping the patient and when it stops helping, we stop it or change chemotherapy drugs. This gives the “I’ve learned to live in the patient the best balance of moment,” she says. “I’m enjoying control of the cancer and optimum quality of life, the little things in life that I never without the side effects of did before.” treatment.” In addition to medita— Lisa Hauter tion, Hauter also finds strength in journaling, “DeDra is a great role model to other yoga, Qi Gong, Healing Touch and by taking greater control of her own health. women showing that you can beat this disease,” says her oncologist, Stephen Lemon, MD, “I have changed my diet to improve my nutriof Oncology Associates, P.C., at Methodist tion, I exercise and I get acupuncture, which Estabrook Cancer Center and West Dodge is supposed to boost your immune system. I Medical Plaza. “She went through all of feel that it’s important to do all that I can to the emotions that breast cancer patients go keep the rest of my body healthy.” through, but as a young mom, they were even Hauter says fatigue from her regular chemore intense. She was a fabulous patient who motherapy treatments has forced her to live life stayed positive and was as aggressive as she at a slower pace, but it has also allowed her to could be in beating this. She should be very enjoy life and appreciate family and friends to proud of herself.” a deeper level than ever before. “I’ve learned to live in the moment,” she says. “I’m enjoying the little things in life that I never did before.” Lisa H auter When Lisa Hauter feels stressed or blue, It hasn’t been an easy road, but Hauter stays she finds a quiet place and meditates. It’s a positive and relies on a good support network of family and friends who have always been stress-reduction technique she took up shortly after her diagnosis and subsequent treatment there when she needs them. “I feel so fortunate for ovarian cancer in 2003 and continues to to have such good friends and family who use today. support me. It really makes a difference,” she “After treatment, I kept thinking that every says. pain I had was the cancer coming back,” she

26 HER • June/July 2011 •

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message from

Theresa Cassaday, Chief Communication Officer

Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska

Big Mama shared her time and pearls of wisdom with the Girl Scouts from Salem Baptist Church.

A Girl Scout Story


Lifetime of Inspiration

photos of and interviewed a Girl Scout troop for our Spirit of Nebraska magazine, The JG. When we invited the 30 girls of Salem Baptist Church, Troop 45013, to pose for the cover, we needed a meeting place for a group that size. We didn’t have to look far. Big Mama’s Kitchen was the perfect setting for an afternoon retreat. What we didn’t count on was the discovery we made…a Girl Scout alumna gem—the head chef herself—Big Mama. Big Mama (nee Patricia Barron), was a Girl Scout in the 1940s and 1950s, and had many memories of her scouting days, but what she most vividly recalled was a troop leader, Florence Nicki Welch. As Big Mama told us, while preparing to serve her famous fried okra to our table of young guests, “Miss Welch was SUCH an inspiration. She taught us every day to ‘stand up to the challenge.’’’ As the stories and the okra rolled out of the kitchen, Big Mama remembered Miss Welch as a woman of poise and strength, who didn’t just talk about rising up to the challenge, but put those words into action. She did everything she could to keep her troop’s Girl Scout experience free from discrimination. Although all girls, regardless of race, have always been welcome in Girl Scouting, this was prior to the Civil Rights Movement, and Big Mama and her fellow ast winter, we took

members discovered that being a Girl Scout didn’t always mean you were welcome in society. “I remember that we ran into difficulties trying to earn our skating badge because our meeting night was on a night when no blacks were allowed at the Crosstown Skating Rink,” Big Mama reminisced. “Ms. Welch personally sat down with the owner and made arrangements, and although we drew stares [from the other kids], we were prepared for that, and we earned those skating badges just like every Girl Scout.” Ms. Welch, taught her many things about “never giving up” and always “pushing forward to achieve your dreams.” Lessons, Big Mama acknowledges, have not only stayed with her, but push her onward every day. “Girl Scouts taught me to use my God given talents,” Big Mama told us. “It is the reason that at 65 years-of-age, I was able to start my own restaurant.” As she prepared to serve hogs head cheese (yes, hogs head!) and share facts about soul food (“food that must be good for the soul,” Big Mama chuckled), she told the young Salem Baptist girls about her experiences in Girl Scouts, peppered with the inspiration Miss Welch had instilled in her, “every door that closes opens another.” Are you a Girl Scout Alumna? Do you have a Girl Scout story to share? Visit

In Every issue, Her Magazine brings you an important message from the girl scouts spirit of nebraska. You can help, get involved!

28 HER • June/July 2011 •

message from

Natalia J. Peart, PhD President and Chief Executive Officer

Women’s Center for Advancement

Thank You Omaha! for voting us your #1 home accessories store.

Women’s Center for Advancement Grows


from Former YWCA Omaha

ith spring and now summer’s arrival, thoughts of growth and new life come to mind. Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote, “The great thing in the world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving.” In April, the Board of Directors of the YWCA Omaha announced that it had transitioned from an affiliate of the national YWCA to a fully independent, local agency with a new name—Women’s Center for Advancement (WCA). With the full support of all community stakeholders, including the United Way, corporate supporters, private donors and longtime patrons, it was determined that the local organization would be more effective operating as an independent agency, focused on local needs and solutions. New name, same trusted programs. We remain a United Way agency and serve more than 20,000 community residents each year through our agency-based programs, crisis hotline, workshops, as well as school-based, shelter-based and outreach services. We have adopted a new, vibrant and more inclusive identity, which is exemplified by our website at The Women’s Center for Advancement name reflects the broad spectrum of programs and services offered, with the

goal of helping our clients — from all walks of life and in various stages of transition and growth — advance toward personal, social and economic success. Currently, the agency is best known for its crisis and safety net services, included in our Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault (DVSA) program, providing a full range of services for victims, including a 24-hour hotline, advocacy, counseling, legal services and more. We’ve also placed a greater emphasis on our Education and Prevention Services for youth, as well as adult men and women. Our revitalized and expanded Transitions economic and career advancement program provides tools and resources for clients to shape their future following a separation, divorce, death of a loved one, or as they enter or return to the workforce. Bridges to Opportunity takes a multi-agency, individualized approach to assist our clients in their efforts to remove the barriers to self-sufficiency, and our upcoming Connections program will provide avenues for women from all walks of life to connect with other women through enrichment classes, special events and mentoring. As the agency evolves, the Women’s Center for Advancement will continue to develop and expand programs that help women and their families live safely, and grow in confidence.

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Every issue, Her Magazine brings you an important message from WCA Omaha. you can help, get involved!



FOODwith flair

Column by Judy Gilliard

Grill, baby, grill!


n the summer,

be beat!

I grill my meat every chance I get—a perfectly grilled steak or chop just can’t

The secret to grilling meats is to sear them on all sides, then turn the heat to low, cover, and slow-cook until done. Keep in mind the meat is going to continue cooking after you take if off the grill, so remove it when the meat thermometer reads 5 to 10 degrees lower than the desired temperature, then “tent” with foil for 10 min. One of my favorites to grill is pork tenderloin, as you can prepare it so many ways. This Apricot Mustard Sauce goes perfectly with pork. Baked beans are also a favorite, and prepared as directed below, make a healthy side dish. Add a coleslaw and you have a simple, healthy and tasty meal. A big pitcher of iced tea or lemonade with lots of ice is the beverage of choice.

Pork Tenderloin with Apricot Mustard Sauce By Chef Judy Gillard Servings: 6

Sauce: 3 tbsp. grape seed oil 1/4 cup diced onions 2 cloves garlic, minced 3 tbsp. cider vinegar 1/2 cup whole grain mustard 1/4 cup Dijon mustard 3/4 cup apricot fruit-sweetened preserve ½ cup Bourbon Pork: 2 lbs. pork tenderloin, cut 1” thick olive oil spray 2 tsp. Chef Judy’s house seasoning* Sauce: Heat grape seed oil in skillet, add onion and garlic, and cook until soft. Add cider vinegar and simmer 3 min., stirring in onion and garlic (be careful do not burn). Add mustards, apricot preserves and Bourbon and stir until all is melted together.

Pork: Spray each side of pork steaks with olive oil and sprinkle with Chef Judy’s house seasoning. On a very hot grill, sear each side of pork for 2 min. Reduce heat to medium and brush pork with sauce. Cook on low heat until temperature reaches 145 degrees. Remove from oven and brush with sauce. Let rest and serve with the sauce on the side.

*Chef Judy’s House Seasoning 1 part tellicherry black pepper 1 part sea salt ¼ part dried minced garlic ¼ part red chili flakes

Place in a coffee grinder and grind until fine. Per Serving: 252 Calories; 12g Fat (45.0% calories from fat); 32g Protein; 2g Carbohydrate; trace Dietary Fiber; 98mg Cholesterol; 201mg Sodium. Exchanges: 4 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 1 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

30 HER • June/July 2011 •

Ask her to explain it again. And she will. Even 24 more times. After hearing the words “you have cancer,” it’s hard to think about anything else. And when it comes to medical language, what you think you hear might only be part of the story. That’s why we offer the Nurse Navigator program to all oncology patients in the Alegent Health system. As your single point of contact, these nurses are with you as often as you need throughout your cancer experience. From helping you understand your diagnosis to coordinating and attending your appointments, these nurses will help you and your family with whatever you may need during this difficult time.


Alegent Health is a faith-based health ministry sponsored by Catholic Health Initiatives and Immanuel.

June/July Her Omaha Magazine  
June/July Her Omaha Magazine  

June/July Her Omaha Magazine