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battle of the sexes


snap out of it!


everyday explorations WHAT’S NEW IN NIAGARA



F O R A L L T H E T H I N G S T H AT YO U A R E . . . R O C H E S T E R W O M A N




W W W. R O C H E S T E R W O M A N M A G . C O M




Experience a Divine Culture ALL-NEW 2016 SHOW WITH LIVE ORCHESTRA

A Perfect Gift

“THE TOP! ...Go back and see it six times! MIND BLOWING!” — Richard Connema, renowned Broadway critic

SHEN YUN’S one-of-a-kind performance revives stories and legends from thousands of years of Chinese culture. With the richly expressive art of classical Chinese dance, groundbreaking musical compositions, and cutting-edge, interactive stage effects, Shen Yun is leaving millions around the world in awe.

FEB 6-7, 2016

ROCHESTER AUDITORIUM THEATRE Sat 7:30pm, Sun 2:00pm | Tickets: $63 - $123 Phone: 800-745-3000 | Hotline: 877-519-0905 Online:








COVER STORY The Year in Review
















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Letter from the


ready”. Certified trainer, Mark Forrest Patrick, owner of Tuxedos K9 Training offers some tips on how to best acclimate your new puppy into your home so that it’s less stressful for you and for the new furry family member. Read his article on page [28].

“The thing about Christmas is that it almost doesn’t matter what mood you’re in or what kind of a year you’ve had - it’s a fresh start.” --Kelly Clarkson The holiday season is upon us,. and it’s time to celebrate the joy of the season with friends and family. As you may have noticed, we are trying something a little different with our December edition and it is only being distributed in digital format. This allows us to be a little more creative with our layout and provide more interactivity for our readers, including awesome videos! We would love to hear your feedback and see what you think. Please feel free to contact us on our website or Facebook page with the hash tag #rwmdigital, and voice your opinion. For our cover this month, we take a look back at 2015 and the cover women (and man) that we featured. It has been a great year for RWM and we enjoyed bringing you more factastic stories about the incredible women who make up our community. We also tried something a little different this year when we published our first-ever “man” issue. We received a lot of positive feedback on that issue, so it’s a pretty good bet we will do that again in the future! Read more about our year in review on page [38]. If you’re looking for a quick holiday getaway this year, but don’t feel like heading to the beach, look no farther than Mirbeau Inn and Spa in Skaneateles. Our travel writer, Katie De Tar took a trip there recently and gave us a guided tour of this magical retreat that is just a hop, skip and jump away. Read all about it in our Everyday Explorations column on page [76]. Thinking of bringing a puppy home for the holidays? There is a lot to do in order to make sure your home and family are “puppy

We’d like to thank everyone for coming out to our this years Ultimate Women’s Expo last month at the Burgudy Basin Inn. We had a record turnout, and from the feedback we’ve received, everyone had an amazing night filled with shopping, sampling, fashion shows and live performances and lots of furry friends. The cast members from Pit Bulls and Parolees were overwhelmed with the response from our readers, and because of your generosity we were able to generate donations of over $3,000 to the Villalobos Rescue Center. Check out just some of the photos from the event on page [66]. For the past five years we have had the pleasure of bringing you stories of the incredible women (and men) that make up our amazing Rochester community. It has truly been a labor of love for us and we’ve enjoyed every minute (ok, almost every minute!) of it. As the year comes to a close, we have decided it’s time to shake things up a little bit. We will not be publishing a January issue in order to allow us time to make some major changes to the magazine and launch a whole new product in February of 2016. We can’t give you any details now, but we can assure you that if you like Rochester Woman Magazine now, you’ll love what we have in store for the future. Stay tuned and follow us on Facebook for updates on the new look and special features! Have a wonderful holiday season and a very Happy New Year! See you in February!

Barb & Kelly


PUBLISHERS Kelly Breuer Barbara McSpadden EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Barbara McSpadden



Erin Gallagher Gilmore Hayle Blair Hornbuckle Paola Kubacki David Lalley Lisa Mancini Jeff Palm Photography Brandon Vick

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Jill Burress Marisa Zeppieri-Caruana Vanessa Cheeks Steve Comella, MD Katie De Tar Jessica Gaspar Alyssa Jackson Cassondra Kubit Angella Luyk Margaret Madigan Mark Forrest Patrick Jamie Scalise Kit Teresi Sofia Tokar Becky Vasilovski James Woods, MD


Unlike any other publication in the Rochester area, our feature articles address major topics that interest local women. Each issue includes articles on health, fashion, fitness, finance, home matters, dining, lifestyle and personal perspectives, as well as a spotlight on local Rochester women. The print magazines are distributed locally in over 350 locations and will be in your inbox electronically by the first week of every month. The publication is available free of charge.

CONTACT OUR HOME OFFICE 585.727.9120 PO Box 90798 I Rochester, NY 14609

EDITOR’S NOTE: Portions of the RW Inspire article on Miriam Steinberg, published in our October issue, first appeared in “Voices of the Ribbon”, the Newsletter of the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester, Volume 16, Number 2, Spring 2015.

DOWNLOAD OUR MEDIA KIT AT The magazine is published 12 times a year by Rochester Woman Magazine, llc. PO Box 90798, Rochester NY 14609. Copyright © 2014 Rochester Woman Magazine, llc. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or republished without the consent of the publishers. Rochester Woman Magazine is not responsible for unsolicited submissions, manuscripts, photos or artwork. All such submissions become the property of Rochester Woman Magazine, llc. and will not be returned.


::OUT &



Tickets for Disney On Ice presents Let’s Celebrate! Presented By Stonyfield Yokids Organic Yogurton sale now in Rochester Disney On Ice presents Let’s Celebrate! Presented by Stonyfield YoKids Organic Yogurt is bringing a colossal party on ice to Rochester! This all-new show visits Rochester from Dec. 30, 2015 to Jan. 3, 2016 for eight performances at Blue Cross Arena. Tickets are on sale now.


In The Heart of the Sea – 12/11 In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance. The real-life maritime disaster would inspire Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick.

Sisters – 11/18 Follows two disconnected sisters summoned home to clean out their childhood bedroom before their parents sell the family house. Looking to recapture their glory days, they throw one final high-school-style party for their classmates, which turns into the cathartic rager that a bunch of ground-down adults really need.

Audiences are invited to make an ordinary day extraordinary and enjoy some of the world’s most popular festivities, including a winter wonderland with Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse, a Halloween haunt with the Disney Villains, a Hawaiian luau with Lilo and Stitch, a Royal Ball with the Disney Princesses, a Very Merry Unbirthday Party and more in one action-packed and positively unforgettable celebration! Disney On Ice presents Let’s Celebrate! Presented by Stonyfield YoKids Organic Yogurt features more than 50 characters from 16 Disney stories live on ice, including Tiana from Walt Disney Pictures’ The Princess and the Frog. Tickets for Disney On Ice presents Let’s Celebrate! Presented by Stonyfield YoKids Organic Yogurt start at $15. All seats are reserved, and tickets are available by calling 585-758-5300 or online by visiting the Blue Cross Arena. For group rates and information, call 866-248-8740. Show Times: ·Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015: 7:00 p.m. ·Thursday, Dec. 31, 2015: 12:00 p.m. ·Friday, Jan. 1, 2016: 2:00 p.m. ·Saturday, Jan. 2, 2016: 11:00 a.m., 3:00 and 7:00 p.m. ·Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016: 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. To learn more about Disney On Ice presents Let’s Celebrate! Presented by Stonyfield YoKids Organic Yogurt, go, or visit us on Facebook and YouTube.

CRISS ANGEL STARRING LIVE IN THE SUPERNATURALISTS™ IN ROCHESTER ONE NIGHT ONLY January 12th at RBTL’s Auditorium Theatre Nine Mind-Blowing Magicians That Destroy Reality

Having sold 40,000 tickets in just one location-- in its premiere four-week engagement at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut-- The Supernaturalists™ starring Criss Angel LIVE (who is also Creator, Director and Executive Producer) is now headed to Rochester! The Star Wars: The Force Awakens – 12/18 Supernaturalists™ opening run at Foxwoods was the most successful, record-breaking launch of ANY ensemble magic show in history and a critically acclaimed smash which reached more The beginning of a new Star Wars trilogy than 251,250,640 people via global media over the course of its opening weekend. will take place 30 years after Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. The new films will feature “a trio of new young leads along with some very familiar faces” .

The Supernaturalists--described by the Las Vegas Sun as “The Most Mind Blowing Magic Spectacle Out There!”—will star Criss Angel LIVE for this limited run, and will kick offJanuary 12 at RBTL’s Auditorium Theatre in Rochester, NY and conclude January 16 in Easton, PA at the State Theatre. These will be the only 2016 shows starring Criss, following which the tour heads to Europe and Mexico. The SUPERNATURALISTS returns to the US in the summer and will continue domestically through the remainder of the year. In Rochester, The Supernaturalists starring Criss Angel will play January 12th at RBTL’sAuditorium Theatre. Tickets will go on sale at 10am December 5th and will be available online at Ticketmaster. com, by phone at (800) 745-3000, and in person at RBTL’s Auditorium Theatre Box Office.

Joy – 12/25 The wild story of a family across four generations centered on the girl who becomes the woman who founds a business dynasty and becomes a matriarch in her own right. Betrayal, treachery, the loss of innocence and the scars of love, pave the road in this intense emotional and human comedy about becoming a true boss of family and enterprise facing a world of unforgiving commerce.

Criss Angel’s The Supernaturalists™ features 9 mind-blowing magicians that destroy reality and revolutionize the live magic ensemble experience. Performers includetwo veterans of NBC’s America’s Got Talent, illusionist Landon Swank and escape artist Spencer Horsman; and members of Angel’s ensemble who have been featured in both his live shows and television projects including mentalist Banachek, up-and-coming female magician Krystyn Lambert, The Great Maestro, and his assistant FiFi. They will be joined by French card master Stefan; the street magician Adrian Vega; and dog conjuror Johnny Dominquez. Explaining his motivation for The Supernaturalists, Criss Angel says: “While there are other ensemble shows out there, performing many of the same illusions that have been around for years, my goal is to redefine magic touring like Cirque du Soleil did for the circus. I’ve scoured the globe for the very best performers, each in their respected disciplines, and our lineup is truly historic. Our illusions are not only original, but revolutionary.” For an exclusive behind-the-scenes peek from the cast of The Supernaturalists™ or to purchase tickets, please go to

chatter ::PLATTER


From local farms to your fork




BY SOFIA TOKAR | PHOTO BY BRANDON VICK Lento open in 2007, one of the first farm-to-table restaurants in the Rochester area. “At the time, most people didn’t know what ‘farm to table’ meant,” recalls owner and executive chef Art Rogers. “People assumed we were a vegetarian, vegan, or health food restaurant. I still don’t know what a health food restaurant is.” Rogers himself experienced the farm-to-table movement while working at Primo Restaurant in Rockland, Maine. After studying hotel and restaurant management at the University of New Hampshire, he worked for Melissa Kelly, Primo’s proprietor, and executive chef. Kelly is the first two-time winner of the James Beard Foundation’s award for the American Express Best Chef (Northeast). “Primo has its own sustainable farm where the restaurant’s produce is grown and harvested, and the animals raised. I learned everything about farm-to-table, organic, and sustainable cooking from that experience,” Rogers says. After several years at Primo, the Pittsford-Mendon native returned to Rochester. He found almost no local food-centric restaurants, so he decided to open Lento in the Village Gate. “At first it was hard to find local farmers to work with,” he explains. “They didn’t want restaurants telling them what to deliver and when. I explained the concept behind Lento, how the menu would change daily. The goal was for us to be flexible and work with what the farmers have available.” Now farmers and other purveyors approach Rogers. He is quick to highlight his suppliers, both in person and on the menu, which include Hart’s Local Grocers, Gansz Farms, First Light Farm and Creamery, and more. Another initial challenge Lento faced was acclimating people to the prices of locally sourced meals. Rogers credits Rochester’s restaurant patrons—especially the younger ones—with a more sophisticated understanding of the value of freshness and seasonality, as well as of the economic impact of regional farming. To this writer, the portions appear in line with the prices. Take the Porcini Pappardelle at $25. The homemade wide noodle pasta is served with Youngman Farms beef (slow braised in red wine and tomato), lobster mushrooms, Lacinato kale, oil-cured olives, and Italian cheeses. The serving size is generous and the dish itself filling (I took half home). Likewise, the roasted heirloom beet salad—featuring Bolton Farms arugula, Lively Run feta, pistachios, and ginger sesame seed vinaigrette—was bountiful in portion and flavor. Rogers’ business ethos extends to Lento’s beverages too. He proudly selects and prominently features New York State wines: “Finger Lakes wines are awesome, and I include them on my menu as a testament to that fact.” Meanwhile, bar manager Alexxandra Loughlin handles the beer, spirits, and craft cocktails: “We like to source our beer and spirits locally, if possible. We work with Rohrbach Brewing Company, Black Button Distilling, Three Heads Brewing, among others.” Loughlin also stocks Soltado, a tequila brand founded by University of Rochester alumnus David Weissman. I sampled it in a cocktail called The Solitary, made with Chinaco and Soltado tequilas, grapefruit, cranberry, honey, and St. Germain. The drink starts sweet but ends with a delightfully spicy finish. Being a gin person, I had to try The Queen at Sea, made with tequila, Queen’s Courage Gin (made in New York State), lime, and Cointreau, topped with an apple brandy, plum, ginger, and honey foam. The resultant flavors are unexpectedly fortifying, especially as the foam blends with the salt-ringed martini glass. The drinks change nearly as frequently as the dinner options. “We update our cocktails weekly or so, especially with our $5 specialty cocktails on Thursdays. The bartenders and I experiment with seasonal ingredients and homemade mixers. Every drink is a collective effort,” says Loughlin. Speaking of specials, check out Tuesday’s Dollar Oyster Night—but make a reservation! “We get really packed on Tuesdays,” says Rogers. Any given night, the oyster bar usually has anywhere from six to twelve different varietals. If raw bivalves aren’t your jam, swing by with your favorite bottle of wine on Wednesday, when there’s no corkage fee. “We started as a high-end restaurant, but now blend casual and fine dining,” says Rogers. “It reflects the needs and wants of our customers while staying true to our model of local, seasonal, and sustainable offerings.” Village Gate Square, 274 Goodman Street North, Rochester, NY 14607. 585-271-3470.



forward :FASHION



Winter is coming, and that can only mean one thing: the ugly sweater makes its return. Once a year, those chunky, festive and often outlandish pieces of knit are pulled from tucked away hiding places to confirm that the holiday season has arrived, and with it, the coveted theme parties calling you to don your most outrageous and ugly sweater. The prospect of transforming these hilariously awful, statement-making knits into stylish outfits may seem daunting. But fret no more: your Ugly Sweater Party Style Guide is here. Coming in all flavors of loud patterns or primary colors, a never-fail and easy pairing for your ugly sweater is a simple pair of jeans. Keep it modern with a girlfriend jean, which falls just over the legs, allowing some wiggle room for dancing or egg-nogging. Opt for a light wash if you’re headed to a casual or daytime party, or a darker wash to make it a little dressier. This look is full of comfort and effortlessly stylish when topped with simple booties and a matching lip for extra pop. To bring some flirtation to the ugly holiday sweater, keep it feminine on the bottom. Silk shorts in navy or black over tights is elegant and ladylike, so long as your pullover falls just to the hips. For something a little more daring, try the sweater over a dark or neutral-colored slip dress. Keep the slip midi-length, and heighten with sling-back pumps or mules, optionally belting your waist to highlight curves. Cuff your sweater once or twice to the forearm, and add a few bangles on each arm as the finishing touch. 10


If you’re going bold with a patterned sweater, take it all the way with pattern on the bottom too. Do this by choosing a different design on your lower half, while making sure to use similar colors to connect the two pieces. If the focal color of the sweater is red, with navy accents, try focusing on that secondary color for the bottom. This look can be tamed with neutral shoes, whether boots or heels, and simple accessories. For an edgy look, try pairing the sweater with leather accents: a no-fail party “do.” Any version of your chunk of knit will work well with leather pants or thick leather leggings. On your feet, black boots – either moto boots or plain, simple ones – melt seamlessly into the pants, adding length to the body without distracting the eye. After all, the focus should always be on the sweater, right? With this gritty style, add some hardware – dangling earrings or a necklace – to make it party ready. Finish off the emsemble by creating a moody pout in dark red, maroon or a shady purple, with cat-eye liner over the lids. Last but not least, for those women aiming to look effortlessly stylish and party ready in an ugly sweater, combine the top with a full-length pleated skirt in a basic hue, and add tall boots to complete the look. If the full skirt is not quite for you, stick to pleats in an easy midi-skirt form — a sparkly one is prime holiday material — with a simple pair of pumps on your feet instead. With some added flair and a put-together style, your ghastly sweater isn’t so vile anymore. So whip out those knits and embrace the look; rock that party and own the holiday season, one ugly sweater at a time.

inspire :RW 12






Staff Sargent, Army National Guard BY ALYSSA JACKSON | PHOTO BY GILMORE HAYLE Amber Davis knew that she wanted to serve her country when she was only five years old. That passion continued to grow throughout her life, even when other options like college were thrown on the table. Davis did attend Nazareth College but did not complete her degree. It seemed like everywhere she looked she saw people in uniform. “I would start seeing more people in uniform and I realized that this was my calling,” Davis said. “I went to Nazareth college and while I was there I just started seeing more people” in uniform and I thought that this was a good time to join.” Davis joined the Army National Guard in January of 2007, citing it as the best decision she had ever made. While other branches of national service were appealing, Davis said that she was drawn to the Army National Guard because of the ability to have a family and stay at home during parts of her service. Although the ability to easily switch back and forth from being a soldier to a civilian was a positive aspect to Davis at first, she conceded that it has been perhaps the most difficult part about her time serving. “I didn’t realize it was going to be such a challenge, and by that I mean it’s very hard for a National Guard soldier to go from a civilian to a soldier at the snap of a finger,” she explained. “It’s able to be done, obviously because we do it every day, but it’s definitely a challenge.” On the flip side, the ability to be both a civilian and a soldier has allowed Davis the opportunity to watch her daughter, Jordan, grow. Jordan is six and hopes to one day have a future in a branch of the national service as well as a flight medic. Being a soldier often comes before being a civilian for Davis. She did complete a nine-month deployment in Afghanistan and has traveled frequently stateside for different large scale national and state events. She described her experiences in Afghanistan as varied, describing both positives and negatives of her deployment. Although she missed being away from her family and her daughter, Davis said that she met some of the most inspirational people in her life. “Where I was located I was able to meet some of the most amazing people that I’ve ever met, and we all went through the same hardships.

Like taking a shower and then getting out of the shower and a sandstorm hits. Like, God that shower wasn’t worth it,” she said with a laugh. She is thankful that none of her services has been as traumatic as it may have been in other areas of the world. “Where I was stationed I take it as a blessing,” she explained. “Many of my counterparts come back home and they’ve changed due to things that they’ve seen and experienced and I take my experience as a blessing because it taught me a lot about not taking anything for granted and that life can be cut short. You appreciate what you have.” Currently, Davis is a staff sergeant. She’s primarily focused as a training non-commissioned officer (NCO), which involves monitoring and tracking training for other members of the Army National Guard. She also works as a crew chief and helicopter mechanic. One thing that Davis has learned from her service is that sometimes the most underappreciated people are the people that serve as the soldiers support system. “In my case I have a child and there are other soldiers that are also a single parent with a child or even have a family. The civilian person in that soldier’s life didn’t really sign up for this,” she said. “It’s not necessarily your choice to go through the number of sacrifices that you go through. You’re sacrificing your time with that soldier and my daughter sacrifices her time with me. If I didn’t have such an amazing support system on the civilian side I wouldn’t be able to do this.” When she’s not working, Davis loves to spend time at the gym with her daughter, who has taken a liking to kung fu, and also likes to get manicures and pedicures with her as well. Between being a soldier and being a single mother, Davis is truly inspirational. “I hope to inspire people to have a good heart,” she said. “It’s not always what’s best for you but for what’s best for other people. When you see someone that needs help and say “someone should help that person,” be that someone.” She also hopes to encourage more women to serve their country. “It allows you to see what you’re really made of, it allows you to grow as a person,” Davis said. “Being in the military is awesome because it’s to serve a greater purpose than yourself. You are fighting for freedom for everyone else. It’s hard to put into words the kind of gratitude that you have for society for being appreciative of what you’re doing and being able to put this uniform on a regular basis.”









Teacher, Schroeder High School BY VANESSA J. CHEEKS | PHOTO BY GILMORE HAYLE Diane DiGravio is a woman on a mission to save the planet. Business owner, educator and environmental activist she has harnessed her passion for the outdoors and sciences into her dream to spread awareness of the effect people have on the world around them. A passion she has had since the age of three. “What we do in our hometown directly affects people across the globe,” said DiGravio who earned her Master’s in secondary science from the University of Rochester and holds a bachelor’s in science and zoology from the State University of Oswego. A teacher at Schroeder High School in Webster New York, DiGravio found herself intrigued by a mailing on Costa Rica and jumped at the opportunity to show her students what she had been talking about in the classroom. “To put what we learned in the classroom into perspective is a powerful tool.” Said DiGravio and after making arrangements she was able to coordinate a trip for herself and 16 individuals to experience firsthand the direct effects of deforestation, flooding, and pollution but still, something was missing. Working with major travel companies left a lot to be desired for DiGravio, who believed there should be more opportunity for involvement for her students. “ I was bringing kids over to make a difference… we saw so many impoverished towns and I had the manpower there so why not put them to work?” said DiGravio and she began to develop her own idea for an environmental outreach program. Working with her favorite tour guide and now business partner Mario Morazán, a Costa Rican native and graduate of the National University in Heredia with a degree in Tropical Biology, Eco- Outreach international was born. Designed to provide enriching, education and action-based tours for students, families and interested individuals, EOI combines teaching and doing to create a comprehensive travel experience which focuses on conservation. “We’ve done reforestation, we paint schools with eco-friendly paint, do beach cleanups. A variety of outreach projects,” said DiGravio who credits the combination of education, action, and enjoyment for EOI’s success. But, for this mother of two the satisfaction comes mostly from the impact. “We did a beach cleanup and even seeing the locals pitching in seeing us cleaning their beach encouraged them to do it too… it’s neat to be able to see,” said DiGravio who also uses her program to encourage participating students to bring what they’ve learned, back to the classroom.

“We call it leaders teaching leaders…not everyone can go on these trips and they’re modeling, even in their own homes encouraging their families to recycle, reduce reuse.” Said DiGravio. In addition to teaching and operating EOI, DiGravio has started a non-profit called Eco Impact which provides free lesson plans to educators around the world looking to promote critical thinking in their classroom about the ecosystem but, it is not just the environment that brings out the best in DiGravio. In 1999, she developed Habitat for Cats, Rochester’s fist spay nature clinic for area felines which originally created outdoor habitats and housing for the feral cat population, a neglected and often mistreated animal population not just in Rochester. The organization then began collect, spay/ neuter and re-release these cats to promote a non-lethal means of population control and education the community about them. “I love cats,” said DiGravio who says felines are by far her favorite animal even though she has an array of pets at home including a 1700 gallon goldfish pond to house the stray festival winnings of goldfish left in her care, but she is happy to help where she can and be a model for her family. “I am modeling it for my own kids, my husband and anyone around me.” Said DiGravio. “We can’t even go for a walk in the rain without scooping up the worms from the sidewalk and moving them to the grass,” said DiGravio who also works diligently to re-home exotic pets in New York State whose owners might not have the appropriate accommodations or necessary licensing needed to keep them. Even with the extra pets and often unexpected animal house guests, DiGravio couldn’t see herself doing anything else. “I love the fact that my passion is able to come out in what I do.” Said DiGravio who is focusing now on bringing more people to the rain forest and other communities in need. The future of Eco Outreach International is focused on conducting more tours including family only trips, adult only trips and journeys into other countries with the same needs. “We are in the process of perfecting our Ecuador trips. We like to pick locations that are biodiverse but, are negatively impacted.” Said DiGravio who also hopes to one day begin eco-tours of the United States, including Yellowstone National Park. “It’s what I wanted to do and my passion just drove me down that path,” said DiGravio who knows is no stranger to going to extra mile to teach her community about the world we live in.


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Please join us for a day to benefit The Bethany House on Sunday, December 13, 2015 from 11am -5 pm The Bethany House provides a safe haven for women in need in our community.

We are inviting guests to bring their hair products and styling tools that they no longer want or need to be gifted to The Bethany House with the hope of providing some comfort to women during their stay. Guests on this day are welcome to complimentary services, mimosas and hors d'oeuvres, savings on new, professional styling products & tools, and a portion of proceeds will be donated directly to The Bethany House. 7181 State Route 96 Victor, NY 14564 (585) 924-7120

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in the moment!


I bounced around a couple of different topics to write about for RWM’s final issue of the year. I thought about touching on how to eat healthy through the holidays along with a couple other “healthy living” articles. To be honest, I started three or four different pieces but stopped writing each time. If the words don’t spill out onto the page for me it usually means that I don’t have an interest writing on that particular topic. So having said that I thought that maybe I would just share with everyone what I am thankful for this holiday season in hopes that it will cause you all to stop and do the same. Besides being an anesthesiologist in the Rochester community for the past 15 years, my nurse Krystal and I started our own health and wellness center. It has been the very definition of a “labor of love” as anyone who owns a business can tell you. However, it has brought us into contact with some of the nicest people I have ever had the privilege of meeting and taking care of. And for me, that’s what it’s really all about as far as being a physician. Owning my owning practice and helping people..... No better feeling. Our skin wellness program allows Krystal to do what she loves most which is skin care. Her passion for helping those with skin issues is unmatched and it makes me happy to watch her work. We truly are carving out a niche in the Rochester community for skin care, body sculpting, and nutritional programming. All in all, I couldn’t be happier about the way our clinic has grown. The work we have put in just to open this practice has taken over five years. We spent much of that time worrying about the logistics, cost, and time commitment. We thought about waiting until our personal schedules were less busy. We worried about how our peers and

the community would accept us. In fact, I personally spent a majority of those five years trying to talk myself out of actually doing this just out of fear. All of this leads me to my final thought for the year which I wish to share. Instead of trying to come up with some very profound conclusion on my own, I think I’ll quote a very famous piece written by Robert Hasting called “The Station”. He likens the journey of our lives to being on a train which ultimately is headed towards the final station which represents the end of our life. Instead of waiting to reach the station before going after that which we deem important in our lives, he instead urges us to live in the moment, not get caught up in the details of daily life, and take advantage of today. The end of the poem goes something like this... “So stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles. Instead, climb more mountains, eat more ice cream, go barefoot more often, swim more rivers, watch more sunsets, laugh more, cry less. Life must be lived as we go along. The station will come soon enough.” So take a moment this holiday season to take inventory of all you have and be thankful. If you have a goal; something you wish to start or something you wish to finish, do what you have to in order to make it happen today.... Not tomorrow, but today. Because the truth is that we are all coming up on the station faster than we think. Enjoy the holiday season and see you all in 2016!

Steve Comella, MD

fab finds ::SHIFT+CONTROL ::SWM

Buy Local &

Find Great Holiday Gifts RED BIRD CAFE

Stop by and Enjoy a delicious fresh made-to-order lunch in the full service Cafe. Where they serve Finger Lakes Coffee, Harney & Sons Fine Teas, Beer and Wine.Shop in the Gift Shoppe for Crabtree & Evelyn Bath and Body, Michel Design,Gingersnaps Jewelry, Stonewall Kitchen, Stonybrook Farms Oils, Harney & Sons Teas, Finger Lakes Whole Bean Coffee, Nunda Mustard and much more. Women’s accessories, plush and Bunnies by the Bay Infant Clothing.


We feature organic, fair trade coffee freshly roasted on site. While you are enjoying your cup of coffee shop our selection of jewelry, sweaters, shoes and more, made by Peruvian artisans in a fair trade environment. Great gifts for the holidays available at all three locations:South Ave, East Main and Winton and Lake & Latta in Charlotte. All purchases support women in recovery from addiction.


Love to decorate for the holidays? Stacy K carries an extensive line of unique holiday decor, ornaments, and giftware. Custom centerpieces are also available. You will work with a Design Specialist to pick out all the perfect pieces for your fresh or everlasting arrangements to top off your holiday decor.



Honeoye Falls Distillery is a group of seasoned individuals whose passion is to create the highest quality spirits from locally sourced grains and malts from right here in Western NY. The distillery is comprised of a growing team of eight dedicated individuals who each have their own role in producing craft spirits for you to enjoy. Products include Devil’s Bathtub Dry Rye Gin, Frozen Falls Vodka and Lantern Light Rye Moonshine. DECEMBER 2015 :: ROCHESTERWOMANMAG.COM

fab finds




Making time for relaxation is a challenge for most of us. We steal moments as best we can. That is why Tealightful® parties and products bring the tea party to you, in the comfort of your own home. They are a wonderful way to relax and reconnect with friends and family.Products are based on the concepts of relaxation, tradition and friendship. Tealightful Treasures believe in life’s simple pleasures; like the comfort of a soothing cup of tea and the love-filled laughter of friends and family.


Take an ordinary shirt and add a design on it and you can wear it out on Saturday night. Their mission is to deliver the best quality product economically and safety to you door, and if cared for according to directions it will last you forever. Rhinestone Apparel uses only the very best Koren Rhinestones. Select a dazzling gift for that special person on your list this year!


Located in Webster, Hand and Stone Massage and Facial Spa provides professional spa experiences at affordable prices seven days a week. Guests entering the spa will be enveloped in soothing sounds and aromas while the journey to relaxation and restoration awaits. Radiant, healthy skin reflects how you look and feel. Hand and Stone’s facials are performed by certified Estheticians and are individually tailored for Women, Men and Teens.


Delightfully Delicious makes and markets all-natural oven-baked dog treats. Their philosophy is simple: the best and safest ingredients for our furry friends. Only all natural ingredients; never any by-products, artificial preservatives, or flavors. The treats are made with love and come in these amazing flavors: Peanut Butter, Sweet Potato and Pumpkin. SYRACUSEWOMANMAG.COM :: NOVEMBER 2015


Rochester’s Premier Event Center WEDDING RECEPTIONS SHOWERS



particulars ::RWM PET 28






The holidays are a popular time for families to get a new pet. Bringing a dog home can be an exciting time for you and your family member. Unfortunately, it can also be a stressful time for all concerned. Some pre-planning for the big event can reduce the stress and make the new dog experience a true pleasure. First, you should put some thought into your dog’s day-to-day routine, and for that we will start with feeding. You will want to look for a highquality food with healthy ingredients. You should discuss any special nutritional needs for your breed or breed mix with your veterinarian. When feeding your dog, you will want to establish feeding times and try to adhere as closely as possible to them; dogs are creatures of habit and will know when it is time to be fed. You may be tempted to leave food out for your canine friend so that they have access to it when you are not there. Avoid this temptation; some breeds have a habit of overeating if the food is available and run the risk of obesity and the health risks associated with it. Just as important, you want your dog to understand that you are the provider of their food. They will respect you as such and be more likely to obey. Play time will e an important part of your dog’s day and will give you the opportunity to establish yourself in a playful and social role as well as giving direction and enjoying a tired dog. Understand that the leader (you) will start and stop all games. If your dog brings you a toy as an invitation to play, take the toy and set it aside for a few minutes. Then initiate the playtime. Make sure you have possession of the toy when you are ready to end playtime. You never want to chase your dog to regain possession of the toy. Start early and train your dog to drop the toy and bring the toy to you before ending playtime. Avoid roughhousing and tug-of-war games with your dog. Roughhousing can establish rough and even aggressive behavior such as jumping on and mouthing you or other people in your home.

Exercise is also an important part of your daily routine. Initially, playtime may be enough, but as your dog gets older, you will want to initiate daily walks. A comfortable fitting harness, six-foot leash, and poop bags are all important to have when walking your dog. A harness is recommended instead of a collar; collars can slip off easily. A solid leash, as opposed to a retractable leash, is preferred. Retractable leashes tend to get tangled and don’t allow you as much control of your dog. If you are concerned about playtime and socialization invest in dog daycare for your new family member. The day care will assist with socialization and exercise. Both play time and walk time are opportunities to establish a bond between you and your new dog. Train with respect and reinforcement and not threatening and intimidation tactics. Good quality treats

are an important part of positive reinforcement training. When you observe your dog doing a desired behavior like sitting or eliminating outside, it is important to reward the behavior.

Sleep time for you and your new dog is just as important as the rest of the day. Your new dog’s sleep quarters should be a small crate. Big enough for him/her to stand up and turn around. Keep the crate in a draft-free area. For the first three weeks, be prepared to take your dog out on a leash to a predetermined relieving area when he/she cries during the night; it is their way of letting you know they “have to go.” When they are done, put them right back into their crate, no treats or playtime allowed. They should go back to sleep fairly quickly if you follow these guidelines. A comfortable blanket and an unstuffed toy to snuggle with may help them transition from sleeping with their litter mates to sleeping alone. Monitor the items in the crate, if you notice chewing or shredding remove the items from the crate immediately. If they wine during the night, resist the temptation to put them into your bed. Once established, this is a difficult habit to break. A puppy in your bed may be cute but think about sharing your bed with a full grown dog for ten-to-fifteen years. A lot of people do it. Just be aware of the long-term consequences of bringing a little Elmo or Lola to bed with you. Let’s review some of the basic steps you can take to prepare for your new dog’s arrival: • Consult with your veterinaria about proper nutritional needs. • Educate yourself about positive reinforcement training, either through literature or by contacting a certified trainer. • Avoid the use of shock collars, prong collars; there is no need to use pain to train a dog. • Start early and be consistent, you and your dog will be much happier with a well trained and obedient new family member. • Have the appropriate equipment ready: dog crate for sleeping and away time and a dog bed for napping while you are home. (this is good to have if you don’t want your dog on the furniture.) A harness and a nonretractable leash for walking. Durable play and chew toys, (dogs like to chew and can ingest fragments; unfortunately they can’t digest them.) Your dog will quickly become a part of your family and you will want to give them all the love and good quality of life that the human members of your family enjoy. May you have many happy years with the newest member of your family. Mark created the to help dog lovers in the Rochester NY area, learn how to care for and really enjoy living with their K9 companion. He uses a positive reinforcement approach to building a long lasting relationship between owner and dog.


Bringing a new dog HOME


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Training “ for you. . . Training for your dog ” TUXEDO’S K9 Training Camp and Day Care Ridge Hill Plaza 892 East Ridge Road Irondequoit NY 14621




Brighton MONROE CLOVER PLAZA 2947 Monroe Ave 585-242-0808

Respite care now available! Call 248-1135 for details.

care beyond compare. Glenmere provides the very best assistance for our residents’ daily needs, while also appealing to their cultivated sides. This is the Cloverwood life, with an added level of reliable attentiveness specific to each individual. Loved ones are safe, secure and enjoying each day. Glenmere is proud to be a certified provider of enhanced assisted living services. Respite care is now available at Glenmere, giving caregivers peace of mind when needed. • Personal care assistance and medication supervision • Licensed nursing staff on site at all times • Exceptional amenities, activities and dining in an uplifting community Call Robin Levitt at 585-248-1135 to arrange for a personal tour.

One Wheatley Terrace • Pittsford, NY 14534

FRIENDLY SENIOR LIVING COMMUNITIES Cloverwood | Glenmere | Linden Knoll | Lovejoy | Friendly Home Because friends care. 01288_GM_Ad_85x11_F.indd 1

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Liza Savage-Katz

The Embrace Every Angle Project BY JAMIE SCALISE

Liza Savage-Katz, a native of Rochester, lived in London for five years as a Senior Art Director in advertising and after traveling the globe for a year, ended up settling in Los Angeles. There she taught yoga and fitness, as well as incorporated her commercial modeling, art and design skills background in helping to launch the Kids Get Movin’ DVD for the Center for Movement Education and Research, plus the Kidtribe, Animal Yoga, and Phresh Kids projects. About three years ago, Liza moved back to Rochester with her son, Zuma. She has been teaching yoga and fitness, as well as coaching crew and being a wellness coach here. She recently started a productions company that creates fitness and educational programming. Liza has a burning sense of responsibility residing inside her soul. She wishes to be a part of a consciousness shift leading to improvement and betterment in the ways in which we relate to one another, as well as the way we treat Mother Earth. Re-purposing resources and sustainability are of paramount importance in her world construct so that our children and planet may see many more lifetimes moving into the future. It is a charter belief of Liza’s that we are interdependently connected, and as such, she cherishes relating and deeply empathizing with all people, regardless of the words others might use to describe the inherent differences among us. Her passion and purpose are to live boldly in the pursuit of inspiring others and finding enough for everyone, and the Embrace Every Angle project has become an offshoot of this goal. Marianne Williamson, a famous spiritual and personal growth author, eloquently sums up Liza’s feelings in her famous quote, paraphrased here for space concerns: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. Our playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” In Liza’s heart and mind, it is imperative that ‘survival of the fittest’ as our working mantra is both retired and rendered obsolete. Our new global consciousness, instead, becomes that of mindfully moving towards success, health, joy, love and prosperity for all. Collectively we are beginning to understand that in order for another to have this bounty no one must suffer as a result. We, too, may have these positive attributes with no negative cost to another. As stated quite simply, there is enough for everyone. Embrace Every Angle was initially inspired by Randi Lattimore and the Midtown Yoga Challenge along with NuMovement Curator and fine artist, Amy Vena. It was devised as a project to celebrate some of Liza’s favorite things: photography, art, fashion, fitness, and yoga. Along the way, it blossomed into a multi-dimensional movement encompassing the celebration of life through giving back to the global community at large. This came to life through a literal focus, that focus being photographs of Liza in various yoga poses ‘embracing every angle’. These artistic images are posted on social media via Instagram at LizaSmilesSunshine along with words of empowerment. In the process of completing this project, it also became a journey of self-acceptance and love.

On a local level, and even nationally, the energy of cooperation and interdependency that manifested itself within the project was spectacular. That same synergy of collaboration, along with generous support from local businesses, created a model of a community cooperative propelling forward the betterment of humankind that can serve as the model for the global initiative. This project, mind you, was not without personal trepidation and struggles for Liza, as they seem to accompany any effort that requires the pushing of comfort levels. There were days, for example, perhaps triggered by a lifetime of recovery from an eating disorder and Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD), where she simply felt unworthy of being the subject of the camera lens. This process brought up many old feelings of not being good enough, but like others with the heart of a lion, Liza powered through her fears and doubts, turning her challenges into opportunities for growth. It seemed that even when she was resisting, the Universe pulled her through, adding a form of validity to her efforts that she acknowledges with full-on gratitude. Additionally, Embrace Every Angle took on a personal perspective of reminding Liza of the joy and majesty present in the geographical treasures of her birthplace, Rochester, NY. The brilliant local photographers she worked with turned her on to places and spaces Liza had never witnessed in her own backyard. The words ‘embrace every angle’ took on the meaning of seeing the world around her through ‘new’ eyes, or with a childlike bewilderment, a vision she wishes for all to experience. Liza has been blessed with being able to travel a large portion of the world, but never in her life has her hometown looked so vibrant. Beyond the joys, she discovered on this glorious journey, the project now soars towards its intended culmination with the Embrace Every Angle Art Exhibit and Fundraiser. The location of this exhibit resonates as both harmonizing and apropos, as the host, Carlson Co-work, is an entrepreneurial ecosystem founded on self-sustainability, interdependency, re-purposing, and unified growth. Sound like a familiar theme? Liza and her co-contributors would be honored to welcome you on December 11th, from 6-10 pm in celebrating the Embrace Every Angle Art Exhibit and Fundraiser with them at Carlson Co-work, 60 Carlson Road, Rochester, NY, 14610. Photographic prints of over 40 ‘Embrace Every Angle’ poses, shot throughout a local treasure trove of regional locations will be for sale with a percentage of proceeds benefiting a melange of local and global charities. Liza and company thank you in advance for your support of their project. The artwork will be up for three months and appointments can be made for an exhibit viewing. In addition, a 6-foot canvas original self-portrait, 22 years in the creation by Liza and her dear friend and fine artist, Jen Facteau, will be on display and for sale. This canvas called “Filling the Void”, has traveled and lived in London, Malibu and is now in Rochester. Twenty-five percent of the proceeds of the sale of this one-of-a-kind piece will go towards a fundraiser for the Lost Boys of South Sudan.




Here is a list of the contributing artists, locations of photography and charities that Liza and each artist want to contribute 25% of the sales towards. Special contributions by Editions Printing, Museum Photographics, Frameworks of Rochester, Image City Photography Gallery, and Project Lean Nation.


Location: Rochester Wall Therapy & Canandaigua Lake
 Charity: Women’s Foundation of Genesee Valley Contributors: Bubululu Malibu, Canandaigua Sailboarding, Wall Therapy artists


Shot at Genesee Valley Park, Tall Guys Art, Studio of Carol Taylor, Home of the late artist, Jennifer Mathieson Charity: Moonshadows Spirit. Contributors:Tall Guys Art, CarolTaylor Quilt Artist, Moonshadows Spirit, Marcus Blackwood, Ruckhouse Athletics, MUA Lola Rivera




Location: Rochester Wall Therapy & SUNY Geneseo
 Charity: The Friends Project. Contributors: Ruckhouse Athletics, Kelly Schaffer


 Co-creative on a 6-foot tall painting called “Filling the Void”. It is a self-portrait Liza literally started 22 years ago & the canvas has traveled and lived in London, Malibu & in Rochester.
 Charity: 25% of the sale of this painting will go towards a fundraiser in Washington DC for the Lost Boys of South Sudan. Contributors: Rochester Picture Framing


Location: Genesee Rowing Club, Mendon, Canandaigua Lake, Chimney Bluffs.
 Charity: Verona Street Animal Shelter. Contributors: Liza Jane Handmade Lounge and Beachwear, Patricia Candido Adornments, Jamie at Sheer Ego, Lululemon Cloverview


Location at George Eastman House
 Charity: Rochester Community Inclusive Rowing. Contributors: M/Body Rochester, Midtown Athletic Club








Location: Mendon Ponds Charity: Living Water. Contributors: Alex & Ani, Peiris Clothing, Ruckhouse Athletics, M/ Body Rochester


Location: Brighton, Mendon, Rochester Wall Therapy
 Charity: Pachamama Alliance. Contributors: Fitsmo, M/Body Rochester, Shawn Dunwoody, Lululemon Cloverview


Location: Genesee Rowing Club, Ontario Beach Park Charity: Heal the Bay. http://www. Contributors: Genesee Rowing Club, Lululemon Cloverview, Fitness Edge Media



Location: Lamberton Conservatory and Highland Park Charity: ARC of Monroe, Contributors: Artist Alicia Kent and her Soul Manadalas, La Salon Bianca


Location: Letchworth State Park, Redmond House
 Charity: Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester. Contributors: Panache Vintage and Finer Consignment



Location: Amy Vena’s Studio at the Hungerford, Artisan Works, Rochester Wall Therapy, Writers, and Books
 Charity: Synthesis Collaborative, a tax-exempt public charity which endeavors to improve the health of communities in need. Contributors: Fitsmo, M/Body Rochester, Ruckhouse Athletics, Marcus Blackwood, Rochester Artist: Shawn Dunwoody, Wall Therapy Artists: Theivin’ Stephen, Queen Andrea, Sam Rodriguez, and Am Mut Hangt der Erfolg Contact: Mary Therese Friel, LLC A full service agency with a complete training program 1251 Pittsford Mendon Rd. • Mendon 585.624.5510 • 585.582.1268 Fax • Like Us on Facebook!



Experience the Strathallan Whether for business or leisure, Rochester’s premier boutique hotel will be an unforgettable experience. Stay in one of the luxury guest suites and enjoy an exquisite meal at Char Steak & Lounge or head Hattie’s on the roof for a handcrafted cocktail, fine Japanese-inspired cuisine and 360-degree views of the city skyline.

Located in the heart of the cultural and entertainment districts!

(585) 461-5010 | 550 East Ave. | Rochester, NY 14607

JANUARY Amy Pierson


story story story

At the beginning of the year we sat down with Amy Pierson wife of slain officer Daryl Pierson to find out how she was doing since the tragic loss of her husband in September of 2014. Amy was gracious and kind and welcomed us into her home for the interview and photo shoot. “I’ve become so aware of so many wonderful organizations in the community because of my own grieving,” Amy said. “I have a strong desire to get involved with volunteer work when the time is right.”


Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan

Our February issue featured Cynthia HerriottSullivan, CEO Rise Up Rochester. HerriottSullivan became a police officer with the Rochester Police Department in 1985. She moved up the ranks, being promoted eight times until her retirement in 2009. “A mentor of mine contacted me when RPD was hiring and encouraged me to apply. It seemed like a good fit. I’ve come to see that problem-solving is a strength that I possess though I didn’t realize this then. I’ve never been able to tolerate seeing the weak get picked on. I was the one that would challenge the bullies in grammar school.”

MARCH Gail Sheehy

For women’s history month we featured award-winning author with local ties to Rochester, Gail Sheehy. Sheehy had just published her latest book Daring: My Passages, A memoir. Sheehy was in Rochester in March to promote her book and to spread the word on her new online Daring Project, where she features essays written by women from all walks of life who have dared to push forward and go out of their comfort zone and accomplish personal goals big or small. Sheehy says, “So many women are interested in the Daring Project. I thought it would encourage young millennials to act, but I find older women more interested in the project. We start a second adulthood starting at 50. It’s longer than your first adulthood so make it count.”


Abby Riggs

Our entrepreneur’s issue featured young Abby Riggs. The daughter of Gail Riggs, founder of Purse with a Purpose, 13-year-old Abby has designed a line of her own creations called Scarves for Shelter. Abby along with her twin brother John are an integral part of the company their mother created. “I think it is really cool that my whole family is involved in the business. My mom and Aunt Catie run the day-today operations; however, we all have fun in helping it grow,” says Abby.


2015 in


Doug Emblidge

In May we decided to do something a little different and create an issue devoted to me, so for our first ever man issue we chose none other than 13WHAM’s Doug Emblidge. Doug was a good sport and allowed us to feature him on the cover in a Superman T-shirt. Word has it that his wife still hasn’t let him forget it. “You better love what you do and not get to the end and say God I wish I hadn’t spent 40 years doing that,” says Emblidge.


Andrea DeMeo

Our June cover featured recently appointed CEO of Trillium Health, Andrea DeMeo. “Trillium has been serving our community for over 30 years, the organization was founded on three very important values that I hold near and dear, and those are courage, hope, and innovation”, DeMeo says of the reason she was attracted to coming to work for the organization.


Nancy Lopez

Rochester’s favorite LPGA golfer, Nancy Lopez returned to town in July to be the honorary Co-Chair of the Toyota Danielle Downey Classic tournament at Brook-Lea Country Club. RWM hosted a meet & greet for Nancy at the Strathallan hotel rooftop and many of our readers were lucky enough to have her sign their copy of RWM during the event. “I have a lot of friends in Rochester,” says Lopez. “We miss Rochester. It was fun to be back there and be a part of LPGA golf– kind of.” “I am grateful to have had a wonderful woman like my mom to show me the true spirit of the holiday season. It’s not what you have on the outside, but what you feel and show on the inside. She was an inspiration. It’s all good when you have family!”




story story

Diane Hargrove


Our annual fashion issue featured former Mrs. America, Diane Hargrove. The pageant-winning beauty queen has Mrs. Arizona, Mrs. America, and Mrs. World listed on her résumé, something most women will never achieve. Now, executive director of the Mrs, New York pageant, Hargrove is responsible for finding Married New York women to compete in the statebased pageant. “All these contestants are beautiful,” she said, “but they’re beautiful on the inside as well,” says Hargrove.



The conversation in the publishing world these days is digital vs print. Now a group of students at RIT has created an app that combines the best of both worlds. The app called RocReadaR in being developed for commercial use. RWM will be one of the first magazines to implement the app in a real world application. Look for it in starting with our February 2016 issue.


Diane O’Connor

The cover of our Think Pink issue featured 16-year breast cancer survivor, Diane O’Connor. For 16 years, she has been involved with the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Walk. “You just need to have that feeling that what you’re doing is a positive influence in other people’s lives,” she said. “The walk is more than gaining money. It’s all those people. If that helps just one person, it’s all worth it,” says O’Connor.


Pit Bull’s & Parolees

We were proud to welcome some of the cast members of Pit Bulls and Parolees to town in November. The were the highlight of our annual Women’s Expo and also made quick visits to Lollypop Farm and Verona Street Animal Shelter. RWM was proud to donate a portion of the proceeds from our expo were donated to Villalobos, their rescue center down in New Orleans. 40


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A friend of mine recently asked me about my spirit animal. I had to think about it for a few seconds, as it is a subject I never spent much energy on before that moment. I quickly answered her, “Most likely a cat, as it seems I have nine lives. “ It’s a fact, I am a death cheater. While I know it will come to get me one day, I have escaped its eternal claws so far. From being hit by a drunk driver as a pedestrian to numerous small strokes and a Pulmonary Embolism from Lupus, life has certainly knocked me down at times. Through the grace of God, an incredible support system and a feisty personality (I’m Italian), I’ve been able to make a comeback, again and again and again. As I get older and meet more people, I am always intrigued by the situations and traumatic experiences people can get through, standing stronger once the storm has passed. For many of us, I have noticed that life seems to separate in that moment, from the time “before” the incident and life “after” the incident. Let’s explore this a bit. In my life, there is a clear and defining moment of my old life and my new life. This moment would be when I was 23 years old and was hit by a pickup truck while walking to my car. That experience not only left me with life-altering injuries, but it was also the trigger for Systemic Lupus to show itself in my body (Lupus symptoms are often exposed via a trigger). Dealing with injuries and a chronic and incurable illness was debilitating mentally, physically and spiritually. I can admit it, for many years, I would constantly compare my new life to the way things were in the past. My husband eventually dubbed this as me visiting the “Town of Used To.” Anytime I would begin a sentence with, “But I used to be able to…,” he would roll his eyes and say, “Oh crap, we are going back there again?” If you are a follower of my blog, you know all about this hellhole of a town. And, even if you are not a follower of mine, if you have had a traumatic or life changing experience, I bet you have traveled to this town on occasion. When we travel to the Town of Used To, we spend an awful lot of time comparing two completely different worlds. I realized over time, the more I spent in this “town,” the more discontentment and pain I felt for the things that were taken from me, the things in life that I lost. One dictionary describes discontentment as “a restless desire or craving for something one does not have.” I felt this craving for years. A craving for my old health, independence and freedom back. In the end, this way of thinking left me bitter, discouraged and hopeless.

Have you ever had this happen to you?

Let’s face it – life can be difficult. The last thing we need to do to ourselves is to add additional despair, resentment, and dismay into the mix. We can counteract these feelings by, well, giving ourselves a swift kick in the ass and making a commitment to ourselves to be grateful and thankful. It’s not easy and believe me, switching your way of thinking will take time and intentional, calculated effort. If you decide not to make this change, you could end up living in a state of constant confusion and dissatisfaction, one foot in the present and the other in a time that will never be again. It has taken me years, but I can see the fruits of my intentional efforts and a shift in my way of thinking. I see now, that even though my life today is completely different from what I had planned it to be, it is pretty incredible. I am alive. I am no longer in a wheelchair. I don’t need a nurse to feed and bathe me anymore. I have an amazing career as a journalist and family and friends who love me. I have a rescue dog who seriously thinks I am the most bad-ass and amazing person on the planet (if he only knew what a hot mess I was ten years ago!). And I will say it again… I am alive. With the holidays upon us, there is no better time to take an inventory of your attitude and gratefulness for everything you have in your life. Consider keeping a gratitude journal in the new year. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just a notepad will do. Jot down at least five things you are grateful for each day. It could be something as simple as “I had a little extra time today and decided to take a 20-minute nap,” or something more profound such as, “I woke up today – I was given another shot to make a difference in the lives of others.” My journal, prayer, and support from family helped me retrain my brain and put a permanent restriction on visits to the Town of Used To. If I have learned anything in my 37 years, it’s that there is always someone going through their “defining moment.” Let’s step out and lend a hand, taking the shift off of ourselves and what we “used” to have and help someone else. And, let’s commit to each other to not visit the Town of Used To anymore. There is a great big world out there, and I promise you, we have better destinations to explore! Marisa is a seasoned journalist, author and founder of the award-winning website,, a nonprofit dedicated to Lupus patients. Email her at





Pea Yo BE W

ace ou






“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men”. – Luke 2:14, King James Bible Peace. It’s a big theme this time of year for Christians celebrating Christmas. Well, I guess anybody who celebrates Christmas, because nowadays there are all kinds of crossover. But keeping true to form, Christmas celebrates the birth of Christ and the above quote is the message the angels delivered to the shepherds tending their flock on the night Christ was born. This little baby was supposed to bring peace on earth. A lovely notion isn’t it? Yet here we are, over 2,000 years later and there still seems to be a shortage of peace. Certainly the terrorist attacks in Paris on November 13th, where 130 people were killed shows that we are far from living in a peaceful world. But I’m not going to be a Debbie Downer and talk about all the death, destruction, violence, evil and hate in this world. No, that would not be very festive. Gotta’ keep it light, right? Keep the holiday spirit? Sure. So let’s discuss the positive… what is peace, anyway? online dictionary defines peace as:

1. A state of tranquility or quiet: as

a: freedom from civil disturbance b: a state of security or order within a community provided for by law or custom

2. Freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions 3. Harmony in personal relations

So… whattaya’ think that angel meant then when he/she said “and on earth peace”? Did it mean tranquility? Law and order? No civil disturbance? No upsetting thoughts or emotions? Or people being nice to each other? My guess is number 3 - Harmony in personal relations. You know, it could be open to interpretation. But all the other stuff in the context of that verse leads me to believe that God wanted dudes to be cool. Yes, he wondered why we all just can’t get along the way before Rodney King did. But I personally think that we can’t have peaceful relations with our fellow man until we have peace within ourselves. What is that, you say? Peace within ourselves means that there is no inner turmoil, there is no hate in your heart and mind. If you’re walking around feeling angry all the time, you have to ask yourself, “Exactly what is it that I’m so angry about?” And every time you answer that question, ask yourself why? Keep asking until you can’t answer anymore. Often what we think is bothering us, really isn’t the real culprit. Often our anger or hate goes back much further. It’s usually some stupid thing that happened as a kid. Trust me on this one. Also, work on connecting with something higher, bigger than ourselves. Spirituality is a good thing to get you centered. You don’t have to be religious, just spiritual. Even if it’s connecting with an energy. There are greater things at work in the universe than just you and your need for a latte. Of course, it’s probably pretty damn hard for all the truly disturbed people in the world to find peace within. Obviously those who are mentally ill or have mental health issues, without proper care it’s really hard to find peace. Some cases are too severe to ever be helped. Let’s face it, that’s why institutions were created. And I’ve always asked myself the question, are the people who are creating the most heinous acts in the world (terrorists, dictators, serial killers) are they evil or are they just mentally ill? Does evil in fact really exist? Woah, woah, woah, that’s getting a little deep Madge! Let’s reel her in. I can’t help it, it’s the stuff I think in the middle of the night that keeps me from sleeping. I have a habit of just wanting everybody to get along and thinking, “Well if we all just do this one thing, how hard can it be?” Sounds simple enough, right? Well, unfortunately, it’s not that easy. And quite frankly that makes me sad. I’m a big fan of peace. I like peace a lot. That doesn’t mean I sit in a quiet space meditating all day, it means I like to feel even-keeled inside and I don’t like to see others fight or be crappy to one another. I really believe that there are people in this world that thrive on anger and chaos. Have you ever watched daytime or reality TV with people (especially women, which bothers me) yelling at each other and over each other. And usually for no good damn reason. I don’t like that, it makes me cringe. In this holiday season, I’d love to think what the angel said would someday come true. But honestly, I just don’t ever see it happening. However, like that old church song says, “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me” I’m thinking that’s the best we can do. Start with finding peace in your own heart. Peace begins at home. Peacefulness can be contagious sometimes. After you get centered, spread your peace to others. It may not solve all their problems, but they will get a warm fuzzy feeling that hopefully they will spread to others. And so on, and so on. I think we get further in life when we’re feeling calm and centered rather than angry and chaotic. I just ask that you at least attempt to keep with the theme of the season – peace. As they say in my church, “Peace be with you”. Margaret “Madge” Madigan in the Associate Editor of Rochester Woman Magazine, and author of the best-selling book, “When Life Gives You Lemons…At Least, You Won’t Get Scurvy!” If you enjoy Margaret’s column, she just published a collection of her columns from the past year in her new book, “Snap Out of It” . It’s available on ROCHESTERWOMANMAG.COM :: DECEMBER 2015


writes ::RWM READS & 50







The following was an excerpt from the book In My Corner by local author Angella Luyk

Angella’s illness has negatively affected my life in the following ways……(just kidding but I like how every story on intervention on TV starts like that) I have known Angella now for over seven years. Angella has dealt with more than her fair share of health issues, but it’s always been this way and I have always realized that this is her “norm”. The host of different problems and the extent of them, I am pretty sure are only known by those in her closest circle and honestly I have never pried because I know that what she wants to share, she will and what she doesn’t care to share should be sacred. While I don’t know the true reality of what Ang has to face day in and day out I do remember one particular scare vividly.

I called Angella’s cell phone to catch up as I hadn’t talked with her for quite a while and I had a few minutes while driving back to my office from a meeting. A man answered her cell phone and I said, “oh I’m sorry I must have the wrong number” he quickly stopped me and said “no, this is Angella’s phone and I’m Kevin taking messages for her.” I thought that was odd so I said, “hmmm, may I ask why you are taking messages for her, is everything okay?” That’s when he told me that everything was far from okay and that Angella was in ICU. I hung up and made a b-line for the hospital. There I found out the story and saw my friend lying helpless in a hospital bed. She had almost died from a mistake that the hospital made doing a routine procedure. Angella herself is probably the best to fill in the details from a “what went wrong” perspective but from my view, I saw a glimpse into what must be fairly common for her and Harry. Ang was being poked and prodded, rolled and tucked while medical personnel did their duties. She was deathly afraid of having blood taken and was visibly sacred and shaken from the whole ordeal. I left the hospital knowing that my friend was going to make it but felt a profound sense of sorrow for what she has to pretty regularly endure and a renewed sense of gratitude for my own health.

This story leads me to one of the things that I admire most about Angella and that is that no matter what life throws her way, she greets the world with a smile and befriends all who enter her path. Inspirational and dedicated, she pushes on to make the most of each new day, never feeling sorry for herself, and never seeking anything from those around her, but always giving to others what she can. (Heather Smith, Director, Medicare Sales, Excellus BCBS) Heather and I had a very nice visit. I was so grateful to her for being my friend and racing up to see me. They put me on oxygen for the rest of the day. Towards the late afternoon, I needed to use the bathroom. Because I was still on oxygen, I was not allowed to get up. The nurse tried to give me a bed pan. This is just not natural, and I had a difficult time. I just couldn’t go. We tried every trick you can think of. I was begging her to please let me use the regular bathroom. At this point, I had two bags of IV fluids. After a few minutes of begging and pleading she let me go with the condition that she would go into the bathroom with me in case I fell. I didn’t care, deal, let’s go. I would be in the hospital for a few more days. Emily came to the rescue again and brought me another bulldog. You see, I had left the original one home. I wasn’t planning on staying in the hospital. Remember, this whole trip started with me being dehydrated. The hospital can be a lonely place. People come to visit but often don’t stay long. You have a lot of time to think about things and miss your family. Harry could tell I was getting depressed, so he drove my bulldog, Abigail, to the hospital to see me. He arranged to have the nurse bring me down in a wheelchair and outside to see my baby. The joy I felt to see her. I had missed her so much. Hospitals make me emotional. This was just how Harry was, always looking for a way to see me smile. Angella Luyk is a local entrepreneur and author. Her first book is titled Wisdom in a Traffic Jam. She is also the owner of Midnight Janitorial and One Stop Janitorial Services. Her books are available on her website

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Don’t Let the




Dash Away




Jingling bells! Take a second to pause and listen. I hear the music playing, “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas...soon the bells will start!” How in the winter wonderland does our ideal vision of the holidays with sparkling lights, glistening snow and children caroling turn into last-minute frenzies, frantically wrapping gifts, and running from place to place with kids missing their naps and mom and dad wanting to take the bridge? That’s my saying in my house, “don’t make mom want to take the bridge!” But wait…”Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays.” Oh, don’t we wish we could snuggle in and enjoy the beautifully decorated tree while singing Christmas carols without the overwhelming feeling of holiday busyness. Okay, so we can slow it down a bit as we sing, “Chestnuts roasting over an open fire.” Doesn’t that sound so peaceful? The sound of a crackling fire while it’s freezing cold and snowing outside. I’m picturing it right now…well, actually I have no idea how to roast chestnuts because I don’t have the time to give it a try nor do I have a beautiful fireplace to roast them. The holiday season can “dash away” from us, and feel like a rushed, busy time of year, but it doesn’t have to be this way. It can be truly peaceful and joyful if we just slow things down with a few pre-planning tips while emanating an elf-like spirit of giving. As with all aspects of life, planning ahead relieves stress; consequently, we can plan ahead for gift giving too. This may not apply to you until next year being that Christmas is almost here, but shop early. I mean, really early. Don’t feel badly for shopping in August for that perfect Christmas gift. This means if you are at the Grape Festival in September and happen to find that perfect gift, buy it. It will keep…unless it’s a fresh baked pie, then you will want to just eat it that day. But there are so many people to buy gifts for. I’m overwhelmed and I’m going to go broke. How do I keep track of all of them and still have some cash in my pocket? I was feeling this way for years, and last year, I scrapped the scribbled paper list and downloaded an app on my phone with a list of every person I needed to buy for including family, friends, co-workers and my husband’s staff. Yes, I include my husband’s gift giving on my list too because if I don’t, it becomes my last minute frenzy and I prefer to avoid that all together. So, however you choose to keep the list, consider creating it in the spring and then sometime before summer, start looking at it and keep your eyes open for gifts all year round. Some Christmas gift lists have ways to set budgetsoverall and for the individual person. This year, I’m experimenting with this Xmas Organizer Pro App and finding that it is helping me stay on task and on the budget. A girl must share with her friends what keeps her sane, right. Speaking of staying on task, my family considers it a necessity to add one more task to our Christmas list- purchasing gifts for those in need. This is the “elf-like” spirit we need at this time of the year to keep our joy meters overflowing. Have you ever seen an elf giving with an expectation to receive? They want to see others experience the joy of receiving. This concept is so important to us as we have to think outside of our overindulged-American mentality to recognize there are many people out there who don’t eat three meals a day let alone even consider wanting anything more than the bare minimum to survive.


Does anyone else sympathize with me, as our children want items that we would never have dared asking for when we were young? Well, okay cell phones weren’t even in the production stage when I was 12, but to have the only item on the list be the newest iPhone seems outrageous to me. Yeah, ladies, that is my 12-yearold daughter’s request this year in which I responded that I don’t even have an iPhone so you certainly aren’t next in line. Remember back to the days when we would ask for things like stirrup pants, a Walkman, blank tapes, an Easy Bake Oven, a diary, a Swatch Watch or Battleship? Ah, reminiscing is so much fun. I think I’ll add that to my list when thinking of ways to make the holidays enjoyable spending time with family and friends recalling moments from the past year. Those times spent together are much more precious than any tangible gift. Never have I realized this more than I have in the past couple of years since my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease. Sharing stories about the past is not a reciprocal conversation anymore and the memories are slowly fading. It doesn’t seem that long ago that we were laughing about the silly things we did on our trip to Baltimore when I was 16. Just another reminder to avoid getting caught up in the busyness of life and the desire for more while life passes you by. This holiday season, I’m vowing to store up my treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. I’m going to give to something that outlasts me…I’m donating to an organization that will provide clothing, food, education and job skills to women and children in Haiti. Proverbs reads, “Whoever is generous will be blessed because you have shared with others.” Do you want to be blessed? Blessed doesn’t necessarily mean financially; although, it could be and being that you live in America and are reading this magazine, you are already financially blessed. Blessings come in many large packages: peace, joy, love, friends, family, etc. To quote the wise ole’ Grinch, “Maybe Christmas, he thought... doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps... means a little bit more!” We have so many expectations that revolve around what we want or what the people around us want. Like Clark Griswald, we trudge through the holidays trying to live out all these unrealistic notions of what we think Christmas should be, but maybe we need to take a step back and consider these questions: What is Christmas all about? How can I keep myself well-balanced and organized so that I can be a blessing to others this holiday season? Please consider giving to something that will make an eternal impact in a person’s life. If you would like more information regarding our Christmas catalog with Heart of God-Haiti, please check out the website: Trust me, I’ve been to Haiti, held the children and worked with this organization for the past five years, they are an amazing blessing to the country of Haiti and your donation would be a precious gift that outlasts you! Jill Burress has recently participated in the Mrs. New York America Pageant under the title of Mrs. Flower City. She is a full-time SpeechLanguage Pathologist at NTID/RIT along with another full-time schedule of “randomness”. She is passionate about inspiring women to be the best they can be! Find her on Facebook and check out the free fitness classes available at Victory Church at

women :::TIPS FOR

Electonic devices: The Cause of Many Aches & Pains




Alright this is the time of year everyone loves to hate or hates to love. You have a list of people you need to get gifts for and you have no idea what you are going to get them. So what do people usually ask for for Christmas? Most people right now are leaning towards some type of electronic device, a new cellphone, a tablet, a laptop, an Ipod. Now I am not here to tell you what to buy people for Christmas I am going to talk about the muscular problems that these types cause your loved ones. Everyone complains about aches and pains in the neck, the back, the shoulders, the hands. Let’s take a brief look at what kind of overuse injuries that electronics can cause our friends, family and ourselves. Let’s talk about our small hand held devices. These devices can create a lot of issues. We are talking about our phones, tablets, and Ipods. There are 10 really common injuries that most people associate with our everyday best friends. Most of these injuries go along with computer work as well. Using the phone or tablet as a computer causes us to look down all the time. This can cause cervical extensor strains and tension headaches.When the spine is hyperkyphotic, the neck will project forward. What this causes is the upper portion of the cervical spine to become hyperlordotic as a compensation to bring the eyes and ears back to level. This will cause the occiput muscles and all cervical exterior muscles to fatigue, tighten, and creates trigger points which will end up referring pain and creating tension headaches. While in this forward head position this cause a rounded upper back. As the shoulder girdles and arms around and collapse forward and down, the thoracic spine also rounds and collapses into flexion. The upper back becomes kyphotic. This creates trigger points to develop in the rhomboids and traps. Along with the rounded back we come across the rounded shoulders. Can’t have a rounded back without the shoulders playing a role. Rounded shoulders is a postural distortion pattern in which the scapulae are protracted and humeri are medially rotated. This causes the rhomboids, mid and lower traps to be in a constant stretched position and the pectorals, subscapularis, and teres major to be in a constant contracted position. Now that we have the rounded shoulders we can guess that the rotator cuff is going to becoming into play. Holding a phone or tablet in front of the body with humeral flexion can also stress and injure the rotator cuff musculature. Whenever the arm is lifted upward, no matter if it is in flexion, extension, abduction, or adduction the rotator cuff musculature will have to contract and stabilize the head of the humerus down into the glenoid fossa as the distal portion raises. Over us of this position can cause fatigue, tightening, strain, and tendinitis of the rotator cuff. Holding the phone or tablet out in front of you causes an isometric contraction of the musculature of humeral flexion at the glenohumeral joint to hold the arm out in the air. This can cause and anterior deltoid strain. Holding the arm out in flexion also requires the stabilization of the scapula which can cause stress in the upper trapezius. While in this

position some people end up elevating the shoulder as well which causes more stress in the upper trapezius and will also involve the levator scapulae. Now that we have gotten to where people tend to elevate their shoulder people tend to develop “uptight shoulders”. This tends to happen a lot when someone is holding the phone in between their shoulder and their ear. This position causes a contraction of the scapular elevation musculature to bring the shoulder up to hold the phone. The muscles of the scapular elevation that are used/overused and likely become fatigued tight and injured are the trapezius and the levator scapulae. Bring the phone up to the ear also creates a contraction of same side lateral flexion musculature of the neck to help press the ear downward against the phone and shoulder. This physically stresses the upper trapezius, levator scapulae, as well as other lateral flexion musculature. Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty of the problems that smart phones and text messaging can cause. Using a smart phone can cause tennis elbow, also known as lateral epicondylitis or lateral epicondylosis. This is a condition where inflammation and/or degeneration of the common extensor tendon occurs usually accompanied by hypertonicity of the bellies of the associated muscles. This condition is caused by overuse of the muscles of the common extensor tendon that attaches to the lateral epicondyle of the humerus. These muscles are the extensor carpi radialis breivs, extensor digitorum, extensor digiti minimi, and the extensor carpi ulnaris. The muscles extend the wrist joint and the fingers. You would think that these muscles wouldn’t contract while gripping the smart phone, but they are needed to contract isometrically to stabilize the wrist joint and preventing it from flexing. Now using a smart phone can also create golfer’s elbow which is the counterpart to tennis elbow. Golfer’s elbow is also known as medial epicondylitis or medial epicondylosis. It is a condition in which inflammation and/or degeneration of the common flexor tendon occurs which is usually accompanied by hypertonicity if the bellies of the associated muscles. This condition is caused by the overuse of the flexor carpi radialis, palmaris longus, and flexor carpi ulnaris, the pronator teres, and the flexor digitorum superficialis. These muscles flex the wrist joint and fingers. These are the muscles that allow us to grip our smart phones. It is okay to hold our smart phones for a few minutes but when we hold our phones excessively like while we are text messaging, facebooking, surfing the web this is when we can start to develop Golfer’s elbow. I finally brought up the accursed text messaging. Text messaging can cause what is called Texting Thumb. Yes this is a true diagnosis like the Wii elbow a few years back. Texting thumb is the irritation/inflammation/injury to the tendons of the thumb due to repetitive over use when texting otherwise using a smart phone or playing on a tablet or Ipod. So as we can see buying electronics may not be your best bet for this holiday season, but if you do remember that all of the above issues can be prevented or helped with a great massage. Cassondra Kubit, LMT Owner of Healing Massage Retreat.


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Take the Holiday Challenge!






Well, it’s December and the family gatherings and get togethers are once again in the works! Have you found something to wear? Are you looking and feeling your best to bring in the New Year, or do you plan on making it your New Year’s Resolution (AGAIN) to get fit for NEXT summer? What would you say if I challenged you to a get your fitness on now, today, this month? I can hear some of you already…. “Oh my god…. I have too much to do during the holidays, I don’t have time. I’ll start right after New Years!” Sound familiar? I’ve heard it from friends year after year, after year, after year. So here is the story….. January comes, and you hear of a great deal at one of your local gyms. You lock into your contract with the intent of really doing it this time, this year. Yes, you are motivated. A few weeks pass, and you are doing great but not seeing results. You are working hard, and you feel you should see a difference. What you haven’t thought about was your diet. As a wise man once said….. “You can’t outrun a bad diet!” A few more weeks pass (if you haven’t quit already) and you start making excuses on why you can’t make it to the gym. Eventually, you forget about the gym. Soon the summer is here, and December rolls around again. Guess what you New Year’s Resolution will be again!?! Well, December IS here, and guess what? This year is going to be different. You are not waiting for January. No, you are making gains before the New Year hits and you are going to do something different, you are going to start ASAP. No more waiting. This time, when you start your fitness program, you will do the following: Take before pictures, take your body measurements, and, take your weight. I’ve learned with Advocare, my #1 nutritional program, that we need something to look at, to compare ourselves to as we try and reach any fitness goal. So, here we go!

Pre 14 or 21 Day Fitness Challenge Documentation:

(give yourself a reachable goal for these few weeks, challenge a friend along the way.)

PICTURES: front view, side view, back view (wear something

that will reveal your figure)


Neck Shoulders (about an inch down shoulder, and completely around body) Chest Arms (bicep area of both arms) Waist (around your belly button because that is where our belly fat settles) Hips Thighs Calves

WEIGHT: document your weight on your measurement sheet



( a small notebook to takes notes…. document your workout and how you felt. Ex. Was it too easy, too hard? Increase/decrease as necessary)

NUTRITION: Cut out these few bad foods: Soda/Juices, Candy/ Chocolate, Fast Food/Processed Foods (Christmas is your cheat day!)


1. Push-ups (on knees if you are a beginner) 2. Crunches 3. Air Squats 4. Chair Triceps Dips 5. Russian twist (more advanced raise legs) 6. Alternating Lunges 7. Burpees

There are 2 ways you can do this….. OPTION #1– do each exercise in 20-second intervals with 10-second rest in between (your 20 seconds of work will be at an explosive rate… do as many as you can) Note: each round is 3 min & 30 sec. Week #1 complete 2 rounds Week #2 complete 4 rounds Week #3 complete 6 rounds

OPTION #2 – each day increases the number of your exercises. Week #1 – 5 reps and increase to 12 reps by the end of the week – Start off with 5 reps and increase 1 more rep each day finishing off the week with 12 reps of each exercise. (If you find this is easy, try doing 2 or more rounds of the exercises each day) Week #2 - 12 reps and increase to 18 reps by the end of the week – Start off with 12 reps and increase 1 more rep each day finishing off the week with 18 reps of each exercise. (If you find this is easy, try doing 2 or more rounds of the exercises each day) Week #3 - 20 reps and increase to 30 reps by the end of the week – Start off with 20 reps and increase 1 more rep each day. On you final day, increase by 5 reps and finish off 2015 with 30 reps of each exercise. (If you find this is easy, try doing 2 or more rounds of the exercises each day)

Post Fitness Challenge Documentation: PICTURES: front view, side view, back view (wear something that will reveal your figure)


Neck , Shoulders (about an inch down shoulder, and completely around body), Chest , Arms (bicep area of both arms), Waist (around your belly button because that is where our belly fat settles), Hips, Thighs, Calves

WEIGHT: document your weight on your measurement sheet If you followed the simple nutritional suggestions and did your exercise regimen, you should see some results. Place your before and after pictures next to each other, calculate your inches lost, and check your weight loss. Please contact me if you need additional guidance! You are now ready to bring in the New Year, continuing your fitness regimen with an even more focused goal! This year will be a HAPPY NEW YEAR! Kitty Teresi is a personal trainer at BEDROC MMA. For more information send her a message on Facebook @ kitfit5pt0

woman ::LEADING

Leading by Example

BY JESSICA GASPAR | PHOTO BY LISA MANCINI Michele Nichols can be described quite a few ways. She’s a mom, a skier, president of her own successful business, and was recently named the president of the local Entrepreneurs’ Organization. Nichols sits at the helm of Launch Team Inc., a Rochester-based marketing firm specializing in promoting businesses in the optics, photonics, and imaging fields. At the core of Nichols’s business model is offering her employees and clients flexibility and options that will be for their greater good. She is most flexible with her employees, whom she encourages to delve into their personal interests and to allow time for the important things in life. “It’s a very mom-friendly place. One of our employees races sailboats, another is a skier. We should all have real lives,” she said. Being the mom of three kids, Nichols knows how unplanned emergencies can knock at any time. Last year, an employee’s best friend needed an emergency heart transplant in New York City. Nichols allowed that employee to be by her friend’s side while working remotely. “She needed to be down there. There’s no good reason we can’t work like that,” she said. Nichols leads a team of 10 people, two of whom live out of town. One employee works remotely from Olean but travels to Rochester a few times a month. Another employee works from Colorado. Sarah Campagna, an account manager at Launch Team, is also a mother of three. She is thankful to work for a boss who is understanding of her family’s needs. “Michele is a wonderful example for women in our community and especially for other entrepreneurs. She is proof that you can design a company culture that is both highly effective and flexible enough to accommodate employees’ lifestyle choices, including mothers,” Sarah wrote in an email. Nichols and her partners purchased PLS Launch Solutions in 2007 from

its original owners, though the company’s roots date back to 1986. Earlier this year, Launch Solutions re-branded its name to Launch Team Inc. Nichols, a Michigan native, has 17 years of marketing experience. She has a bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Fredonia as well as a master’s degree in business administration from St. John Fisher College. She resides with her family in Victor. Looking ahead, Nichols is excited about the opportunity to work with her clients in the photonics field who may see a surge in business with the planned photonics center slated to move into downtown Rochester’s Legacy Tower. Though based in Rochester, Launch Team has projects and clients in many major cities, including Chicago, Boston, Dubai, and Denmark to name a few. Nichols has kept Launch Team’s growth steady, but intentionally slow. “I’m perhaps even too cautious about growing and building this … I want it to be good for our employees and for our clients and for my family, so I’m a little cautious in the design of that,” she said. Earlier this year, Nichols was named the first female president of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization’s Western New York chapter. The one-year term expires in July 2016. Although, Nichols didn’t put much thought into being the first female president of the group. “The women’s issue is not one that often occurs to me. I work in a maledominated field,” she said. “I am often the only woman at the table. I don’t think they see me or treat me any differently.” The Western New York chapter of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization has 54 members, nine percent of whom are women. In her free time, Nichols enjoys spending time with her children. The family enjoys being outdoors, skiing, kayaking, hiking, and running. She loves to travel and ranks San Diego, Copenhagen, and Greece as some of her favorite places. Nichols also serves on the alumni board at St. John Fisher College.


6 & 13









Organization: Rochester Public Market Where: 280 N. Union St When: 9:00am-10pm Website: Organization: Embrace Every Angle Art Exhibit Where: Carlson Co-Works When: 6PM to 10PM Website: Organization: Seneca Park Zoo Where: 2222 St. Paul St When: Times vary(check website) Website:

Organization: Tango Cafe at The Jonathan House Where: S35 S. Washington St, Rochester When: 9:00pm Website: Organization: Strong Museum of Play Where: Strong Museum of Play When: 7:30am Website:

flavorful ::FIT & BY TRACIE LONG

With all of the tempting, traditional holiday food and beverages, this classic is rich enough that it can be lightened up, while keeping the flavor and cutting some of the calories and fat!

HEALTHIER EGG NOG (yields approximately 1½ cups)

1 large egg 1 large egg white or 3 tablespoons egg substitute (such as egg beaters) 3 cups low-fat milk ¼ cup evaporated cane juice or turbinado sugar 1¼ tablespoon cornstarch 1¼ tablespoon pure vanilla extract ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional) 3 tablespoons rum (optional) In a medium bowl, whisk the egg and egg whites until blended; set aside. In a heavy saucepan, mix 2¼ cups milk with the evaporated cane juice and cornstarch. Cook on medium-



high heat, stirring constantly, until it comes to a boil and begins to thicken. Allow to boil for one minute. Remove the pan from heat. Gradually whisk 1/3 cup of the milk mixture into the eggs to temper them. (Trick of the trade: Tempering is a process by which hot liquid is slowly added to eggs or other foods, without curdling or cooking them.) Pour the egg mixture back into the milk in the saucepan, whisking constantly. Pour into a large bowl. Stir in vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon, rum and remaining milk. Cover and refrigerate until chilled. You can sprinkle on some nutmeg prior to serving if you want to spice things up a bit more. Tracie Long is the founder of Avocadough, a bakery that creates all of its confections using avocados and other all-natural ingredients with no preservatives. For more information on Tracie or her business, visit

events Rochester Woman Magazine


RWM’S ULTIMATE WOMEN’S EXPO NOVEMBER 19, 2015 AT THE BURGUNDY BASIN INN The highlight of this year’s Ultimate Women’s Expo was the appearance of members of the cast of Pit Bulls and Parolees. The line of attendees started forming early and by the time we opened the doors, it stretched out to the street. Once inside, attendees enjoyed over 175 vendors, live performances by Amanda Ashlee and SHERO, two incredible fashion shows and of course an opportunity to meet Lizzy, Moe and the other cast members of Pit Bulls and Parolees that came to the event. A special thank you to Sponsor, Greg Polisseni and Artistix for helping to bring the cast to Rochester. PHOTO CREDITS: Brandon Vick, Gilmore Hayle, Erin Gallagher and Blair Hornbuckle.


moment ::MENOPAUSE

HAIR TODAY, GONE TOMORROW. What’s Testosterone Got To Do With It?

BY JAMES WOODS, MD AND ELIZABETH WARNER, MD For women in menopause, hair loss threatens one’s self-image and social confidence. Termed androgenic alopecia (AGA), or “female pattern hair loss,” it is misinterpreted as “going bald.” Even if a woman is reassured that this is not the case, or that it affects men as well, the phenomenon evokes fear and even depression. Under the influence of our androgens, the formation of a hair begins in a follicle consisting of epidermal cells that grow down into the dermis. At the base of the follicle is the papilla, a living organ surrounded by capillaries, where the hair is created and which responds to circulating hormones. As the hair forms, it grows toward the surface in a shaft of two layers, the inner layer ending below a sebaceous gland and an outer layer that attaches to the gland. The sebrum, produced by the gland, offers conditioning to the hair, which is composed of dead proteinacious material. The growth phase of normal hair (anagen phase) lasts up to three years, followed by the catagen phase (a brief intermediate period), and then a short (100 days) resting (telogen) period before the hair is discarded. The androgen, testosterone, when converted to its active form, 5-alpha dihydrotestosterone by the enzyme 5-alpha reductase, is essential for hair on our face and body, and less for our axilla and pubic area. But age, gender, and genetics also influence this process. In early puberty, androgens initially elicit the development of tiny vellus hairs that later become pigmented, followed by larger hairs that appear differently in different parts of the body. The formation of 5-alpha dihydrotestosterone is key to normal hair growth. Yet excessive activity by the enzyme 5-alpha reductase produces the thinning or miniaturization of hair characteristic of AGA. In this process, over several hair cycles, there is a shortened growth or anagen phase, (a reduction from three years to 1.5 to 3 months) leading to thin, 72


colorless hairs instead of long, firm-colored hairs. No change in number of follicles, however, occurs. If the normal growth cycle of anagen to telogen ratio is 9:1, miniaturization reduces this ratio to 2:1. That the process is selective to certain areas of the scalp reflects the differences in embryologic origin of these scalp areas. In men and women, there is more 5-alpha reductase in frontal follicles than in occipital follicles. Additionally, women have more of the enzyme, aromatase, in the frontal and occipital scalp, which metabolizes testosterone to estrogen. Most women with AGA have normal menses. Measuring blood levels of hormones, therefore, offers little value in the evaluation. Moreover, there is no relationship of AGA to other testosterone effects on muscle, bone, or sebrum secretion. Treatment of AGA addresses the unique aspects of this biologic event. Biotin, a water soluble B7 vitamin, improves keratin, a structural protein in hair and nails. Oral finasteride, a 5-alpha reductase type 2 inhibitor, may slow the AGA process in premenopausal but not menopausal women. Spironolactone, an aldosterone antagonist, offers mild anti-androgenic effects. Minoxidil, initially used as an antihypertensive agent, stimulates the vellus follicles. Finally, nonandrogenic hair follicles transplanted from the occipital scalp to the androgen-dependent frontal areas provide a permanent solution. Hair loss is a major insult to our sense of self-worth. Understanding the biology provides opportunities for new and innovative therapies. James Woods, M.D. is a practicing gynecologist certified in menopausal medicine and a regular contributor to Rochester Woman Magazine. Elizabeth Warner, M.D., is a retired gynecologist living in Rochester, NY. For questions regarding this menoPAUSE or other menopausal issues you would like to see addressed in future editions, please call him at (585) 271-7800.

Obstetrics and Gynecology

Henry Hess, MD, PhD

Jim Woods, MD

We specialize in perimenopausal and menopausal care and welcome new patients. To make an appointment, please call 585.271.7800. Hess/Woods/Warshof Obstetrics and Gynecology 2255 South Clinton Avenue Rochester, NY14618 Kalin Warshof, MS, RN, FNP-BC





So let me be the one to stroke your ego a bit and let you know that your mind, body, and spirit are unique and the only one of it’s kind. Now if you ask me, that is an awesome aspect of life to celebrate on a daily basis. I honestly love being me, but I haven’t always felt that way and was always looking to others for my value. Maybe you can relate? I am going to tell you a story of a young woman who was so intriguing on the outside, likeable, always wanting to please others men and woman thought she was pretty, funny, always wearing a smile that would light up a room and make you feel joy just by the way she looked at you and others. Not to mention she always dressed nice, her skin, complexion and makeup were always perfect. She’s the girl who had the nice home in the suburbs, the handsome husband that cherished her and their three daughters. In a neighborhood where she made close friendships where their children played with her children. Everything she always wanted since she was a little girl. Life was perfect! Or was it? As I got to know her on a personal level I learned that she was so focused on maintaining the life she was accustomed to and how others saw her that she got really good at wearing many masks and really didn’t know herself at all. She felt alone and on a mission for discovery. Discovery of self. She said she had spent so long living a life for others and trying to make others happy that she got lost in the process. I was like what? What do you mean you got lost? This to me was profound and even more intriguing to look at the girl who seemed to have all she could want in life to come to such a conclusion. She said she had, for most of her life, conformed to the world and people around her. To her that was just the surface of who she was that had been touched upon. She wanted to go deeper and get to really know herself, something I believe can benefit all of us today. Wherever you are in your life journey whether it be family, career, health, financial freedom, time management, spiritual, friends, fun, leisure and fitness I invite you to see it as an adventure you get to go on and experience to know yourself personally within all aspects of your mind, your body, and your spirit as one unique person designed for greatness. I believe currently the greatest gift you can give yourself is knowing who you are, who you want to be and then to transform yourself into the person you can love and respect while letting go of past regrets and things we cannot change. Within life we all have a story to tell, to share and at times what we perceive of someone is not always what is. Life is not a bed of roses for anyone and we all struggle but for most of us if we have the gift of free will, then we have the choice for taking care of ourselves, investing into knowing ourselves and taking inventory of what we really want out of life and then taking the time to make “you” a priority and take action. In our society of “Not One Size Fits All” we will never have all the answers and it is a beautiful thing to be content with that and enjoy the journey as a life we get to live and experience rather than a destination where we have arrived because we have it all figured out. I don’t know about you, but boring! So what is mind, body, spirit wellness? Well, let me tell you it’s “Not One Size Fits All” and the journey is taking the time to invest in knowing yourself and then transforming into what you know in the moment works


for you. YOU are mind, body, and spirit. In my own journey it has been trial and error, good and bad, tears and joy, but I have learned to love myself and appreciate the many masks I have worn and got to experience along the way all while discovering more of myself, loving the woman I am because I have been part of the design and creation of self. We can benefit from seeing ourselves as our own masterpiece a work in progress. A work that continually needs to be shaped, formed, evaluated and reevaluated on a daily basis to be the best version of “you” inside and out that you can live with first. I believe you are your greatest investment and it is a beautiful thing to know yourself enough to be able to invest in your life by your design. You write your own story with the greatest wisdom you have been gifted with is within. Listen to that voice. As a woman, it has been my desire to draw people to me and be desirable. This can be a blessing and a curse. Nothing to be ashamed of wanting to be desirable, but as a woman especially, we need to be careful of what or who are drawn to us because of how we are desired. The characteristics of the people you want to be drawn to you should be the same characteristics that you put on each day within your mind, body and spirit. Think of it as the Law of attraction. If you want to be healthy in all aspects of life then maybe think about surrounding yourself with anything that you see as healthy and transform yourself to that lifestyle. Actively seek, look, search, research and live what works best for you. This could be what you eat, music you listen to, the clothes you wear, what you read or watch as well as the people you keep company with, do they have or want the same things you do? This is all about life and learning and enjoying the process of the journey, your personal adventure, never meant to be perfect or one size fits all. Live life and discover or rediscover your life’s journey of mind, body, spirit as one unique you. We can’t just wish it to happen although that would be nice for most of us. I have discovered in knowing myself that I enjoy helping others. This has brought me to life coaching within helping others find their best self and enjoy creating the journey they see for themselves and enjoying the adventure along the way of life. We will have many doors open and close along the way as we go through life and I have found it best to embrace whatever comes your way that is good although it may not havenot been planned or seen. This is the adventure, not the destination. I believe all good things are always coming, even in the storms of life. It is all perspective and looking for potential in all situations good or bad. What we believe of ourselves and our futures is what is lived out in reality. What is your reality? Think it, speak it, live it. I am living my reality at La Vie Salon Spa Wellness here in Rochester NY which is a vision I have seen, want, live and continue to speak into my life of mind, body, spirit that lines up with what I desire today and see as part of my tomorrow and those that are in my life. It is a place that magnifies the characteristics of the woman I want to be and want others to be drawn to as well as what I am drawn to as my personal self and the life I desire. Love your mind, body, and spirit as a whole without judgment or comparison of someone else. Not conforming to what you think others want of you, but transforming to tell your story by living it and being part of the bigger picture that is bigger than you or I. What life story will you leave behind? Excited for the adventure ahead? I am! Becky Vasilovski is a Life Coach at La Vie Salon Spa Wellness ROCHESTERWOMANMAG.COM :: DECEMBER 2015







Mirbeau Inn and Spa A Magical Getaway in Any Season


Once the holiday cheer comes to an end, it’s tempting to just want to hybernate for the duration of the winter, but allow me to offer an alternative. There’s a magical village and spa retreat just a short distance from home, perfectly poised to offer a relaxing mid-winter getaway.

Skaneateles is the gateway to the Finger Lakes, as is a great base – even in winter – to explore this region. Dozens of area wineries and craft cider makers offer tastings and tours. And the village, with its expansive lake views and rolling hills, is charming to explore. Walking distance to the village is Mirbeau Inn and Spa, a beautiful small hideaway that feels more like a French chateau than an upstate resort. Situated on 12 idyllic acres of tall pines and gardens, the Inn’s 34 guest rooms spread between a main building and four cottages provide a luxurious overnight rest. Aside from the occasional street noise, you’ll feel transported – away from New York State and the stress of daily life – to a magical retreat. In the wintertime, fireplaces warm the main buildings and guest rooms, and plush furnishings offer a comfortable spot to watch the snow fall. For the ultimate in relaxation, book a treatment at the resort’s 14,000-square foot spa. The relaxation room is a cozy haven, complete with heated foot pool, fireplace, and ergonomic teak recliners. Outside, a year-round hot soak soothes sore muscles next to a roaring fire. It’s easy to spend the day in the spa, soaking away your cares or enjoying a massage or facial in one of their lush treatment rooms. A resort policy of wearing your robes to breakfast and lunch in the dining room allows for complete comfort. Post spa, warm up in the wine bar, where you can sample a variety of wines from around the world next to the fire. The unique wine station dispenser offers three pours; taste, half, and full glass, including local wines from the Finger Lakes. Next, move into the elegant dining room. Here, you’ll enjoy French inspired cuisine with world influences, like scallop nicoise salad, fresh seasonal fish, and roasted breast of duck with garlic potatoes. Dessert brings another level of excitement, as in-house pastry chefs create seasonal delights ranging from house made beignets to apple turnovers. Each guest room offers a cozy place to rest and relax, with fireplaces and large claw-foot soaking tubs. Watching the snow gently fall from the window of your balcony, you’ll ease off to sleep in the large king bed. If indeed you do plan to cocoon until spring, then allow your upcoming getaway plans to get you through. When the flowers begin to burst and the trees again green, Mirbeau offers another layer of beauty in their expansive gardens. Inspired by Monet’s Water Lilies, the layers of ponds, willow trees, cattails, and lily pads create an oasis in the center of the resort buildings. Here, you’re sure to spot the resident heron. Understandably considered a menace by the garden staff, the giant local bird swoops in regularly to pluck koi fish from the ponds. While unlucky for the fish, the prehistoric-looking bird is a real treat to observe. Not often can you enjoy a world-class breakfast

of house-made granola and croissants while wildlife feeds just a few feet from your table.

Strolling through the gardens, brick pathways lead over an elegant arched bridge and to the cottage buildings. The experience is reminiscent of a small European town, as soft music and the smell of fresh baked bread wafts through the air. Visiting the village of Skaneateles in the warm months presents a new season of beauty. The village’s namesake lake is one of the cleanest in New York State, and the clear blue waters offer swimming and boating fun. There’s daily scenic cruises, and two waterfront parks are great spots for a picnic. In either season, be sure to visit the Skaneateles Bakery for an amazing cinnamon roll. They sell out daily – so get there early! And the shops in town – everything from upscale women’s clothing to chocolates to housewares – are a treat to visit. There’s even an old-fashioned toy store and entire galleries featuring works by local artists. A stay at Mirbeau is a world-class experience with small town charm, in any season.


Mirbeau Inn and Spa Skaneatele I 851 W Genesee Street Rd Skaneateles, NY 13152 I (877) 647-2328 I Every guest room at Mirbeau features the following amenities: • Fireplace • Large claw-footed soaking tub • Spacious tiled walk-in shower • Flat-screen television with DVD player • DVD library and In-Room Movie Packages • Bose® stereo system with CD player • Exclusive “Essentials” line of body and hair care products • Plush bathrobes • Daily newspapers and magazines • Turndown service • Complimentary high-speed internet access • Use of the Spa Mirbeau’s relaxation, health, and wellness facilities A small number of “Club Rooms” feature three guest rooms opening onto a joint living room area. The Club Rooms include the following amenities: • Continental breakfast in Mirbeau’s Dining Room from 7:30 – 10:30 a.m. • Afternoon wine and cheese service • Milk and cookies each evening at 8:00 p.m. • Complimentary coffee, tea, bottled water and fruit available all day • Guaranteed early check in at 2:00 p.m. Note: Keep an eye on the Mirbeau website for special spa deals monthly. The resort also offers special packages for bridal groups, parents-to-be, and couples. Katie DeTar is the host and producer of “Fringe Benefits,” a new PBS television travel series that highlights destinations in and around featured American cities. Learn more about Katie and “Fringe Benefits” at Follow her on Twitter @katiedetar or find her on Facebook at fringebenefitstv.

Happy Holidays From Our Good HandsÂŽ To Yours.

Enjoy all the good moments that come with the season. Your friends at Allstate wish you the best this holiday season and look forward to serving you in 2016.

VINCENZO SCOLLO 585-381-3530

Insurance subject to availability and qualifications. Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Co., Allstate Indemnity Co. Northbrook, Illinois Š 2013 Allstate Insurance Co.


835 Fairport Road East Rochester

December 2015  

Our December issue takes a look back at the cover women (and man) that we featured in 2015. Also, look for all your favorite columns and fe...

December 2015  

Our December issue takes a look back at the cover women (and man) that we featured in 2015. Also, look for all your favorite columns and fe...