“Youth is the gift of nature, but age is a work of art.”
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August 2021 - “ Perfect Age” Contents Volume 20, Issue 8
About the Cover Artist: Johnny Popkess is a figurative artist with a passion for the human form. He portrays the body as it should be seen, bold and proud, not hidden by layers of cliche. Painting exclusively with the finest hand blended pigments and oils on stretched linen canvas, his work is classically contemporary. 2017 was his debut year as a professional artist, one that saw his first solo exhibitions. His work is now hung in an ever growing group of fine art galleries and collections throughout the US, France, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Italy and the Middle East, with a notable recent commission on behalf of the Emirati royal family. Recent exhibitions include Antwerp, Los Angeles and Boston. Forthcoming exhibitions include London, Miami and Florence. www.johnnypopkessart.com
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Perfect at Every Age by Deirdre Garr Johns
Sasee Gets Personal with Daniel Walters: Laid Back Charters
Say Cheese by Rose Ann Sinay
Welcome to the Wellness of MD4Vitality: Tatyana Gluzberg, M.D., Ph.D. by Sarah Elaine Hawkinson
Steele Bremner: Always Growing Up, Never Growing Old by Sarah Elaine Hawkinson
A Grandpa for All Seasons by Jeffery Cohen
Guts and Glory by Diane DeVaughn Stokes
How Multi-Generational Friendships Transformed My Life by Rebecca Deurlein
from the Editor This summer I turned a quarter of a century and even at 25, I do not feel my age. I have always been “mature for my age” as they say, and I think that is because my inner soul feels as though it is three-quarters of a century. I believe the reason I feel this way is because I caught onto the “point of life” much earlier on than most by understanding a few wholesome concepts: life is meant to be truly lived every second of every day while surrounded by loved ones, our personal journey is not meant to be determined by societal norms, and that regardless of age, there is always time to learn, grow, and prosper. I celebrated my quarter of a century birthday surrounded by over a dozen of my closest friends. Our ages ranged from 19 to 30 and a decade difference in age could not possibly differentiate us at heart. I have friends of all ages that range much wider than a decade and I seek out friendships on a daily basis regardless of how many years someone has been on this earth. The most important aspects of kindling new friendships are feeling that genuine connection of comfort, sharing similar interests/mindsets, and finding someone whom you know you can learn from (and who is also able to learn from you). As for me and my group of friends, we share simple pleasures: music, nature, and laugh-until-you-cry laughter. We spent my birthday weekend camping in tents, walking trails, sunbathing on the beach, grilling out together, and simply enjoying each other’s company from sunup to sundown. When viewing life as a whole, my mentality is that mistakes are not really mistakes and that the only real “mistake” you can possibly make is not learning and growing from that experience you may refer to as a mistake. Life is not about age; it is about perspective. Read all about this mindset from the inspirational and wise women interviewed for Sasee’s August issue, “The Perfect Age.”
Publisher Delores Blount Sales & Marketing Director Susan Bryant Editor Sarah Elaine Hawkinson Account Executives Erica Schneider Gay Stackhouse Art Director Patrick Sullivan Contributing Photographer Chasing the Light Photography Web Developer Scott Konradt Accounting Gail Knowles Executive Publishers Jim Creel Bill Hennecy Suzette Rogers PO Box 1389, Murrells Inlet, SC 29576 fax 843-626-6452 • phone 843-626-8911 www.sasee.com • firstname.lastname@example.org Sasee is published monthly and distributed free along the Grand Strand. Submissions of articles and art are welcome. Visit our website for details on submission. Sasee is a Strand Media Group, Inc. publication. Copyright © 2021. All rights reserved. Reproduction of any material, in part or in whole, prepared by Strand Media Group, Inc. and appearing within this publication is strictly prohibited. Title “Sasee” is registered with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office.
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Perfect at Every Age by Deirdre Garr Johns
There are many cliches to take the edge off of aging. Aging is like fine wine. You get better with age. You’re only as old as you feel. These statements have aged in their own way, becoming nothing more than loose change to toss into a fountain and wish upon. And ones that I let fall on deaf ears.
live with a certain amount of freedom – without being responsible to another person or for another person. Had I been married at that point in time, or become a mother, I would be a much different wife and mother than I am now as someone who experienced those events later in life.
I also think of the phrases “over the hill” and “fifty is the new forty” and other variations that indicate mile markers in life. As society embraces these phrases to mark important events of life, I can’t help but wonder why these particular numbers have a timestamp. Milestones can – and should – happen at any age, so why wait for a number to designate the “right” time to try a new hobby, retire, travel, change careers. Maybe the perfect age is the one we are living.
In my thirties, I have made a lot of choices for the benefit of others, not myself. Sacrifice is essential in relationships, but too much sacrifice can take the joy out of life. Much of my time in my thirties has been an uphill climb as I have made choices to make others happy. And I have paid the price. But I have also gained in this, and these hurdles have allowed me to develop a better sense of what I want, and now it is mine for the taking.
I suppose I should be readying myself for an “over the hill” slump of some sort. But I am not so sure. Each year I feel my opportunities widen, rather than diminish, as I age. I can’t say that I have always felt this way. I chose not to celebrate my 35th birthday. For a moment – well, a year – the number 35 rounded me up to 40, and I was not quite ready to consider a new decade. I am now less than one year away from this milestone. Will I be “over the hill”? I don’t think so. I feel like I have lived many lives even though I am just now approaching 40. I’ve lived in four states and moved several times, even once moving from a one-bedroom apartment to a two-bedroom apartment in the same complex – after one week – because my best friend said she wanted to move to Maryland with me. I’ve taught in six different schools in only fifteen years of teaching. Each event along my journey has been some sort of “uphill climb” in trying to make the best of life at that moment. Some events were planned, some unplanned. More recently, as I have started to write, I never thought, “I will be too old to do this.” The perfect age is the age in which you feel limitless. If I look back at each of my decades, there was something perfect about each one. In my twenties, I was able to 10 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
What do I hope to learn in my forties and beyond? That I have lived my life long enough to know that mistakes are ok. That trying and failing is no big deal. That I have my own voice to make my own choices for myself. That change is healthy. And possibly, patience as a virtue. I am still working on this. That will be a life-long lesson for me, and if there is an age in which patience is granted, then that might be my perfect age! Maybe the perfect age is a collection of the ages. Maybe the perfect age is the age we are living as we gather lessons along the way, which is a good thing now that I am celebrating birthdays again, though sometimes I am a year off!
Deirdre Garr Johns
resides in South Carolina. Her work is inspired by people, places, and nature. Her work has appeared in Sylvia magazine, South Carolina Bards Poetry Anthology 2021, and the Surfside Chapter of the South Carolina Writers Association.
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Gets Personal with Daniel Walters: Laid Back Charters “Better to fight for something than to live for nothing” by George S. Patton is Daniel’s favorite quote. Daniel’s parents have owned a home along the Grand Strand since the late 1990s and Daniel has owned his current home in Ocean Isle Beach since 2018. In 2020, Daniel’s biggest lesson learned was that life is fleeting and he decided to live life to the fullest and make his dreams a reality! Laid Back Charters opened for business in the spring of 2021 giving families and friends a chance to make wonderful memories together on a private fishing trip while safely bringing home their catch. Daniel’s most-loved decade is the late 80s and early 90s because of the great music and the simplistic lifestyle of not needing a smart phone. Ernest Hemingway’s Old Man and the Sea is Daniel’s most treasured book because it is the story of life and death which is something we all deal with. The Old Man sees the sea as both life and death; the sea is beautiful and during life, you enjoy it, but the sea can also take your life. Daniel’s “me time” is spent hunting and fishing. One of the biggest reasons why Laid Back Charters is so important to Daniel is because it is a way for him to spend “me time,” but with family and friends. It’s no surprise that fresh seafood is Daniel’s top choice for cuisine. He enjoys catching it, cleaning it, and finding new ways to cook it!
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910-754-3484 127 Village Drive, Suite B Shallotte, NC 28459 www.speechsolutionsinc.com Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 13
Say Cheese by Rose Ann Sinay
My family would be hard-pressed to find more than a few natural, un-posed pictures of me as a young woman. I was never comfortable in front of the lens and went out of my way to stay clear of people toting cameras on straps hanging around their necks. I always had an excuse for not wanting to be in a picture. My hair was too messy, or short, or long. I was too fat or bloated; my face – too pimply or in need of make-up. I was always … “too.” When I did get captured in a group snapshot, I was the one with one eye shut and mouth open wide.
event or moment, and there’s no wait to share it.
I decided there was only one way to control my less than perfect images – I became one of those people with a 35mm in hand, snapping pictures left and right. I wasn’t good at it; it was simply the answer to a problem. The photographer was never in the pictures.
Of course, we are still at the mercy of the picture taker. We don’t always have a say about the viability of an image. I have been in the candid group shot – the one that shows a great time being had by all – that is immediately posted on Facebook. The photo is great: everyone’s eyes are open, and grins are wide, and I am the one with a dark blotch of something stuck between my teeth. Some things never change.
*** All these years later, my grandchildren flip through albums, laughing with disbelief at their parents’ childhood pictures. My four-year-old granddaughter pauses and points to a man in a photo with a full head of dark brown hair, sporting a full mustache, and wearing white socks that stop two inches short of his knees. “Who’s that?” she asks. When I tell her it’s her Pappy (grandfather), she dubiously examines the figure holding her, then, six-year-old father’s hand and says, “What happened to him?” After I stop laughing, she asks, “Where are you, Grandma?” “Taking the picture,” I replied regretfully. *** Today, it’s easy to snap perfect images with cell phone cameras, and the quality of the photographs is just as good, if not better than those taken with the old boxes with multi screw-on lenses. My grown children have thousands of pictures saved for posterity somewhere in that infamous cloud. There’s no need to miss a single 14 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
And selfies, alone or with a group, can be deleted and retaken until there are no shut eyes or unwanted bat-winged arms stretched in the air. My children’s generation takes this incredible innovation for granted. Only those of us who have had to wait an entire week to get back disappointing photos from the mall Fotomat can say: “Cell phone photos are ‘the best thing since sliced bread’” and understand it.
Fortunately, there are videos and a multitude of advice on the internet that will let us in on the secrets of taking our best selfie. To score a winner every time, one must practice poses in the mirror, check out all angles, and find one’s best side. Try duck lips, funny faces, happy grins, and pensive pouts, they say. Look for optimum light, hold your head at an angle, slant the camera and hold it high, arm fully extended. Better yet, buy a cell phone stick. Be sure to take hundreds of pictures to figure all of this out. Unfortunately, this advice is not for me. *** I want to be one of those beautiful spur-of-the-moment people in the photo that my great-grandchild will ask about in awe, but I realize it is not my reality. Even though I’ve added pesky wrinkles and curly grey hairs that spike through my dyed hair to my “too” list, I refuse to be the “ghosted” grandmother. I’m coming to terms with being the quirky one in the bunch. I’ve accepted that my ever-expanding list of
“imperfections,” magnified in the sharp eye of the close-up lens is, actually, an interesting evolution of character. It’s a good thing. Some people are naturally photogenic; I am not. But, I have other attributes. I can make interesting things out of toilet tissue rolls, glue, and paint, I let my husband win at card games, and I make the best chocolate chip cookies. (You can tell the latter by the muffin tops sitting on my waistline, exposed in my pictures for all to see.) My progeny will have to settle for the funny-looking lady with her tongue sticking out and freckles that might match their own. Maybe, they will find my pictures endearing; maybe, my foibles are not as weird as wearing white socks pulled up within two inches of my knees. So, go ahead, say “cheese.” I’m in.
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Rose Ann Sinay is a freelance writer newly relocated to Connecticut. She continues to write about moments worth remembering, graciously provided by family and friends.
bethearetirement.com Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 15
Aging Gracefully As Betty Friedan says, “Aging in not lost youth, but a new stage of opportunity and strength.” Life is not about age; life is about living every moment wholly and beautifully in every aspect. In order to genuinely enjoy the life we have so graciously been given, it is absolutely essential that we acquire the proper health and mindset we need. Aging is natural, but each individual is capable of choosing whether they want to “get old” or continue to grow through the process of aging with a positive perspective. The elegant ladies of our Aging Gracefully feature have some beneficial advice they would like to share for everyone maturing and evolving through their new stages of life.
Q: Regardless of age, how do you find someone a perfect gift? A: The perfect gift for someone, no matter what their age may be, is to find something truly as special as they are. Choose something that reflects their personality and the one thing you see that reminds you of them. Perhaps a vibrant scarf in geometric patterns or fantasy florals for your friend with a bubbly personality! For your friend with a passion for art, a one-of-a-kind handcrafted piece of jewelry, perfectly perfect for them! Monica Vogel 910-579-5628 720 Sunset Blvd N. • Sunset Beach, NC 28468 bleuboutique.blogspot.com
Q: How does one best age with attitude and grace? A: Aging with attitude and grace is quite easy for me. I keep my big girl panties on every day! Sure, there are people with a grim attitude, and it usually shows. I like to think I can make anyone smile, especially being in business. A true and nice compliment goes a long way, whether it’s a hair style, clothing, jewelry, or even skin! Some people are just born with great skin! We all age, so why not embrace what God gave you. Susan Lumpkin 843-520-5852 629 Front Street • Georgetown, SC 29440 www.RiceBirdsShop.com 16 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
Q: How do you dress trendy for your age? A: Being trendy as you age is about staying true to
your personal style and modifying the current fashion trends to fit your “new” body. Trendy at 65+ might mean cute flats instead of heels or capris instead of shorts. But it doesn’t mean you can no longer wear those bright colors you’ve always loved or those gorgeous prints you’re so fond of. Accessories such as a stylish hat or scarf add a finishing touch to any outfit. Donna DePazzo, Clothing & Accessories Manager 843-314-3316 11378 Ocean Hwy • Pawleys Island, SC 29585 RescuedTreasuresSC.org
Q: How do you find the perfect gift for any age? A: When it comes to finding the perfect gift for any age, our
number one tip is to avoid boxing people in because of their age. In other words, don’t let someone’s age be a limitation when selecting a gift. For example, just because someone is in their eighties, doesn’t mean they wouldn’t love a pair of bold and funky sunglasses. Just ask Mel’s Grandma. =) And like Melissa says, “you always feel 21 in your head.” Mel Healy & Melissa Lee 843-651-7979 3579 U.S. 17 Business • Murrells Inlet, SC 29576 www.GoodDeedGoods.com
Q: How do you second-hand shop for a mature age? A: First, go to BloominGail’s Consignment on Hwy 17 in Little River. The women who work there are all “of a certain age” and are the best dressed women in town for casual wear, church wear, party wear, and evening attire. If you are not sure what to wear for your age or your size, Gail will help you look your best for any occasion. You won’t have to spend a fortune as most clothing at BloominGail’s are priced under $10.00. Gail Roberson 843-780-1136 1468 Highway 17 • Little River, SC 29566 Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 17
Aging Gracefully Q:
What are the most rewarding things about maturing/ growing older?
A: Although I may not be able to rise and shine as quickly in the mornings as I could when I was in my twenties, aging has had its benefits. With age comes experience and those experiences have taught me quite a bit over the years. Most importantly, they have taught me not to sweat the small stuff. God always has a plan, and it is usually much bigger than anything my simple mind can imagine. I just have to step out of the way and let him work instead of trying to fix it all on my own as I did when I was younger. Ginger Gray 843-546-6858 800 Front Street • Georgetown, SC 29440 www.doodlebugschild.com
Q: What are the most important aspects of a healthy lifestyle? A: It’s so important to stay young-at-heart, to be kind, and to have a positive outlook because those will keep you feeling young. Feeling young leads to looking young because you’re going to be radiating a positive energy. You must move, even if it’s just walking or parking your car farther away in the parking lot. You must drink lots of water because, as you mature, your skin gets drier. It’s also important to re-evaluate what you eat and try to eliminate any food that might not be serving you well, meaning things that don’t support your energy, focus, and hormone balance. It’s not fun to do that but it’s really important for maintaining health. Remember, it’s a privilege to get older so we need to embrace each year as it comes and enjoy life, no matter what age we are. Brooke Taylor 843-281-9650 312 Main St. • N. Myrtle Beach, SC 29582 www.HopeTaylorCo.com
Q: How does one best age with attitude and grace? A: Aging gracefully is something to be celebrated. Look at
your amazing life and your accomplishments! As I look at my experiences, travels, children, and grandchildren, I can’t help but smile…every single day. I feel like “the good life” is happiness and contentment, pride in a job well done, eagerness for my future because who knows what amazing things lie ahead. Sure, I have a few more wrinkles, but as Jimmy Buffet said, “wrinkles only go where smiles have been” so I’m going to keep smiling and keep aging with grace and positivity. Leigh Simmons 910-579-1525 17 Causeway Drive • Ocean Isle Beach, NC 28469 www.surfunlimitedsurfshop.com
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843-281-9650 312 Main St. • N. Myrtle Beach, SC 29582 www.HopeTaylorCo.com Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 19
Welcome to the Wellness of MD4Vitality: Tatyana Gluzberg, M.D., Ph.D. by Sarah Elaine Hawkinson
Tatyana grew up in Siberia, Russia, and matured quickly as she earned her MD by the age of 24. Over the next 16 years, she specialized in dermatology, reaching Director of Residency at Tyumen Medical School and completing her Ph.D. She was also a pioneer: opening the first private dermatology clinic in her Siberian town, Tyumen. It wasn’t until the age of 40 that Tatyana experienced America for the first time. She came for a medical conference and to visit her brother in Detroit, Michigan. She fell in love with America over the summer and her vacation turned into a staycation. She also realized that America would be a great place to build a future for her family. After a 20 year medical career, Dr. Gluzberg had to retake the medical exams and board to reestablish her MD in America. After 40 years in Siberia and 9 years in Michigan, Tatyana was done with the cold climate and snow. She always wanted to live close to the beach, so 12 years ago, she found a job and moved to the Grand Strand. Tatyana did not know a single person in Murrells Inlet where she started her new career as a Family Physician.
a glass of wine or dinner; you truly build a friendship and learn how to evolve with it. I now know how to be a best friend.”
When I asked Tatyana about her opinion on making friends after the age of 50, she laughed and said, “Coming from another country and moving from state to state, I had no choice but to make new friends at the age of 50.” Once she joined the Army at 49 years old, it redefined her view on friendship: “I was connecting with others from other countries, spoke different languages, and had different mentalities and emotions. I am fortunate for the military for showing me what friendship means and now in civilian life, it’s helped me make real friends. We are really responsible for our friends. It’s not just about going to a party or having
Tatyana spent 8 years in the Army Reserve (now she is a Major) and worked in Murrells Inlet at a primary care clinic but she wanted to expand her own new kind of practice. To be ready for her new career, she went through years of training in anti-aging medicine, nutrition, aesthetics, skin cancer, lipidology, telemedicine, and earned her board certification in Lifestyle Medicine. She loved the fun atmosphere of the Market Common and due to all of the healthy/wellness stores in that area, she thought her Vitality Center would fit in great. Last fall, she purchased her location, and MD4Vitality opened on May 5th, 2021.
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Another reason Tatyana wanted to begin this new career was because she wanted more time to devote to family (her son and two grandkids) and to making real friends. Her family explained to her: “If you continue to spend all of your time working, yes, you will be making money for your family and retirement, but you won’t have your health or any friends to retire with.” Basically, she now understands that if you spend your whole life working and doing what society has led you to believe is most important, you do not even know yourselves outside of work. By the time Tatyana sees people in her practice, they have spent 60 years damaging their bodies and brain: they cannot travel because of their joint pain, cannot eat good food because of their damaged digestive system, cannot sleep because their brain was so overloaded for so long, and cannot even feel true enjoyment because although they have reached the point of their life that they are supposed to enjoy the most, their tools do not function as they should. Tatyana believes that “age is not the diagnosis; it is only how you are feeling because you are just not adjusted to your age.” She clarified that many who come to her for help with depression are not actually clinically depressed, they are simply not adjusting to their new situation. Many of these people are retired and all craving the same thing: something to do that they enjoy and friends to do those things with. She is amazed by how many of them do not even know what their interests, passions, or talents are. She tells them that “making friends is a medical prescription – It is absolutely necessary for anxiety, depression, adjustment disorder, and loneliness.” Every single person that Tatyana encounters with this struggle, she encourages to get active in their social life by finding new hobbies or joining groups by volunteering at places like Brookgreen Gardens and Huntington Beach State Park. She believes that surrounding yourself with nature and bonding with others who enjoy it too is a positive remedy. As far as a healthy lifestyle, Tatyana encourages everyone to be a coach for themselves as well as have a good support system. She promotes how significant is it to first be properly evaluated and educated by
a physician, or a specialist. She explained, “In order to find your perfect ‘healthy lifestyle,’ you must first understand why it’s unhealthy now, whether it has to do with physical, emotional, or social factors, or your sleep, food, and beverage intake. A good evaluation like this is necessary because a ‘healthy lifestyle’ varies depending on a person’s biology because this is a case where one size most certainly does not fit all. Once you gain a personal evaluation, only then can you find your version of healthy.” For example, Tatyana has never eaten “poorly,” but when she decided to start eating “healthier,” her body was not liking it. She decided to have a food sensitivity test done and found out that “healthy” foods such as almonds and spinach that she had incorporated into a “healthy diet” were not healthy for her. They were damaging her stomach, but once she found this information out, she easily switched her almonds for cashews, her almond milk for coconut milk, and her spinach for kale. All it takes is the proper evaluation and the solution becomes easy. That is what vitality is all about. Tatyana contemplated the name of her clinic for a long time, but when she discovered that the word Vitality meant the stage of being strong and healthy, she knew it was perfect. Tatyana does not believe in getting “old,” but she does believe that being mature is the perfect age to rediscover yourself. The most important lesson Tatyana has learned in her life so far and the advice she would like to pass along to younger generations is: “You can always get a new car, house, or upgrade your Apple device, but you only have one body, and that is absolutely the most important thing to work on and improve. Your body is a tool to enjoy your life to the fullest and if you don’t have a good tool, you can’t truly enjoy your life. You can neglect anything and everything but these things in your life: Your body, mind, and soul.” “You can plant roses in the ground, but if you don’t properly fertilize the soil, they are unlikely to bloom. Treat your body much the same – ‘fertilize’ it with friendships, love, and a healthy lifestyle, so you too can bloom.” -Tatyana Gluzberg, M.D., Ph.D.
Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 21
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Always Growing Up, Never Growing Old by Sarah Elaine Hawkinson
Regardless of our Sasee monthly themes, I start all of my interviews with simple questions that help me get to know the interviewee such as their upbringing and where they grew up. Steele answered this question quite fittingly for this month’s theme when she said, “Where did I grow up? Well, I’m still growing up!” Steele spent her first couple of years growing up in Libya, so when her family moved to California, she spoke Italian. She was immediately enrolled in dance to help her get more acclimated to English and Americans, and once she joined the Royal School of Ballet, she truly felt at home and safe. Steele spent her days dancing, surfing, and hunting abalone (a delicious mollusc with a beautiful outer shell). During this time, Steele met her first mentor of meditation, vegan eating, and all-around wholesome healthiness. The greatest life lesson Steele has learned is to keep on learning and she has most definitely spent her life learning and growing (up) in all aspects. She acquired undergrad degrees in classical ballet and psychology as well as physical education and recreation/curriculum building. She has master’s degrees in modern dance and physical therapy. Steele is certified in nutrition as well as transcendental, instinctive, and mantra meditation. She also has international certifications such as yoga (which she has maintained since she was 14 years old), meditation, pilates, private training, health services, health physiologist, sports medicine, Ti Chi, Qui Qong, and is licensed in energy healing, crystal healing, group aerobics, Zumba, Chinese medicine, and as a deep tissue masseuse. Steele stated, “my journey has been long, but when you start working with bodywork, it just continually evolves, so I have grown with the art and have enjoyed the education of it. Many of my credits go to the dancers and masters that lead me to take on these opportunities. I have been blessed by my education and experiences that have allowed me to connect with so many other living souls.”
Steele decided she wanted to be a ballerina at age 4, and at age 14, she made her dreams a reality. She applied overseas and was accepted at Royal in London. The learning curve was immense, but she kept moving forward due to her devoted passion and encouraging support system. She traveled all over the world where she developed a high appreciation for all of the diverse cultures, extraordinary theatres, and interesting dance and art that she was able to experience. After her remarkable time as a ballerina, she was transferred to the states by Royal where she worked for several years as the American ambassador for the southeast region. Forty years ago, Steele moved to Pawleys Island. She worked at Litchfield by the Sea (when it was called Waccamaw House) where she helped set up wellness and safety programs. Ironically, the wellness center (a gym) is where she first met her husband, Alan, while he was working out. At the time, Alan lived in London, but his parents had a place in Pawleys Island that the family visited frequently. Alan and Steele ran into each other again at the Surfside bowling alley while listening to a live band play, became real friends, and through the years of visiting each other, their friendship morphed into a romantic one. When Steele first moved to the Grand Strand, she helped several other dance studios open. In 1996, she purchased her very own on Georgetown’s Front Street and expanded it with a gym next door, The Studio of Dance and Winyah Fitness: the beginning of Steele and Alan’s dream for Georgetown County. Steele vowed to herself that if one day she could not give 100%, she would entrust the company to someone ready. After 15 years of owning The Studio of Dance and a lifetime surrounded by all things dance, Steele passed down her studio to the most caring and gifted successor, Wendy Carroll Carraway. Although being without dance broke Steele’s heart, she still feels so blessed to have Wendy who was more than capable of giving the kind of time and commitment the children needed to still have their safe place at The Studio. Steele explained, “In life, we are all weaving tapestries, and I am so grateful for her intertwining with mine. I would not be where I am today without immense support and love from others who have helped open doors for me. I want to open doors for others by passing along that same love and support that I have been so fortunate to receive throughout my journey. Life is a revolving door!”
In 2013, Steele and Alan moved Winyah Fitness to Pawleys Island. The dynamic duo realized they finally had the time to focus on their beliefs of true wellness and the best way to use their talents and years of professional experience was to put all of their energy into one-on-one training. Steele thought back to her days of training in ballet and how much private lessons helped her excel and they also thought the idea of personal training would be beneficial for working with all ages. Steele views their new location and thriving business as a genuine gift from Georgetown County’s community. She explained, “Although Alan and I both put in a lot of hard work to get here, the overflowing love and support from the community was a blessing, but that is just how our community is. The community is our family.”
Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 27
Winyah Fitness is a successful family affair including the Bremner’s passionate son, Alistair. Steele adores her son’s big heart and feels the utmost gratification while watching him grow into his truest self. Having adult children makes Steele feel extremely proud because she loves to see them living happily. She also likes the concept that she has many adult children who are not biological to her and that she herself has been an adult child to many who have helped her along her journey. She stated, “I honestly could not imagine only living in one generation. I love having friends of all ages and learning from their diverse perspectives.” When I asked Steele about her favorite decade, her eyes widened with astonishment that she was supposed to only pick one and responded with, “I have loved every decade because they have all given me eye-opening discoveries: times of love and growth, and times of heartache and loss. Life is like music the way it portrays a history of epiphanies the artist has experienced based on what is happening during a specific decade. Music and art are my way of living through the decades daily which is also why I love history, museums, and libraries. Every decade I have lived has been one worth living and I love that we can create playlists, so now I can live in whatever decade I want to in a particular moment depending on my mood for the day and time. Music fixes you like a deep breath and keeps you feeling young.” It’s no surprise that Steele is more concerned with feeling young than looking young. She just wants to feel comfortable in her own skin and she made it clear that while being healthy is very important to her, so is the quality of life. I asked Steele what she considers the most important ingredients for a healthy lifestyle are and she replied with, “first off, love and support, for yourself, and from others. Then the brilliant aspects of drinking enough water, intaking proper nutrition, exercising, laughing, spending time outside, having a sacred safe space, embracing your instincts, and owning who you are as a person. If something isn’t working, be okay with transitioning through that process and do the work towards your peace and harmony. It is all about balance. Consistency feeds the mind, so continue to show up for yourself: get up, get dressed, and do your best, and on those days when life is too overwhelming, call somebody you trust.” Steele stays healthy, happy, and humble by committing (and forgiving) herself and others. Professionally, she 28 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
strives to always listen, teach, and guide. Personally, she aspires to always stay true to her heart, create memories with loved ones, and be a steward of the community. Steele is the type of person who always tries to see the cup half full but also understands that in those moments when the cup does seem half empty, you must challenge yourself to change your angle and gain a new perception to be able to see it full. She has a life motto that keeps her mindset on track and keeps her trusting her gut which is, “you are where you’re supposed to be AT this time.” As far as aging goes, Steele has done so with grace. She encourages everyone to not grow “old” until you have to and states that “growing older is a philosophy, some of us may grow older and some of us just continue to live, and I make the choice every day to continue living. I’ll let you know when I grow up!” There is a concept in meditation of “There is, I am” that Steele explained to me and for her, the most rewarding part of maturing is understanding her personal “I am” (yourself) and feeling more at home with the “there is” (the world). Staying in harmony with those two elements creates a bridge that allows her to feel acceptance that change is simply a part of the journey. Steele chooses to embrace the grace of change and age every single day. “Time is precious, health and wellness is a mantra, and life is a mystery…so as this hippie artistic soul would say, ‘Enjoy your juju so your mojo can breathe deeply.’” -Steelz
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A Grandpa for All Seasons by Jeffery Cohen
I learned early on, that being a terrific grandparent actually requires a great many skills and expertise in all kinds of varied areas. In the summer, I was called upon to be, not just a swimming instructor, but the chief architect of dozens of sandcastles constructed on sandy beaches as my granddaughter assisted with pail and shovel. In the Fall, I was a naturalist pointing out varieties of trees by the shape of the colored leaves that fell around us on hikes through the woods. Snowflakes of winter piled high, challenging the sculptor in me to fashion a host of icy snowmen or taking on the role of general, crafting strategies that would vanquish an oncoming army of snowball throwers. Spring was always my favorite. As the frozen ground began to thaw, temperatures rose, breezes lofted in the air, carrying visions of fragile kites drifting among the clouds. One April afternoon, after watching a Mary Poppins video, my granddaughter Bria decided that we should go outside and fly a kite. The only kite on hand was one grandma bought last spring which was so battered from a useless attempt to get it airborne, it was retired. Despite its beat-up state, my granddaughter pleaded, and so a quick repair with a roll of tape and a plastic rod, and we were on our way to the park. Bria attacked the playground equipment with the energy of a four-year-old and I happily assumed that she’d forgotten about the kite. No such luck. After twenty minutes of running, jumping, sliding, and swinging, she leaned on me, exhausted, and said, “Grandpa, I think I’m ready for my kite now.” I reluctantly retrieved the spent plastic glider from the car, unwound a length of twine, and began to run, the kite bobbling behind me. Twenty, thirty, forty feet, and the kite barely moved. My granddaughter looked at me with total disappointment. I took a deep breath and raced across the thick, green grass, the kite in tow. The thing twisted and turned and swayed in every direction but up. I squinted at the treetops. Not one single leaf was moving. Zero wind. With renewed determination, I flashed back and forth, back and forth, the kite bouncing on the ground behind me. For fifteen minutes I ran to every corner of the park. By now, so much sweat was dripping into my eyes, I nearly ran head-on into a spruce tree. My shirt was drenched, my calf muscles about to explode. My arms were aching, my head was starting to feel as high as...a kite...just not this one. Light-headed enough to faint, I turned back just in time to 30 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
see the kite catch a freak burst of wind and...up it went. Gasping for a breath, I screamed, “Look. It’s up!” Bria stared skyward, caught sight of the kite, and a grin spread from ear to ear. She laid on the ground, folded her hands behind her head, casually crossing her legs. I stood there puffing, feeling vindicated, triumphant. Then she said, “Now sing the kite song, Grandpa.” “Kite song?’ I choked. “What kite song?” “The one from Mary Poppins. Sing it, Grandpa,” she said matter-a-factly. I drew a blank. She was certain that I knew every kid song ever written and was truly disappointed as I fumbled to fake it with a handful of kite-rhyming words. “It’s so right to fly a kite...into the night...that...that... the clouds of white...will...will cause a fright that...” “Not that one, grandpa. The other one. The one from Mary Poppins,” she called out. She stared at me...waiting, and I had nothing. Things couldn’t get worse. That’s when I lost concentration for just a split second. The kite dipped and wound up hanging on the telephone wires. “My kite! You tangled it up,” she cried. Now I’m in for it, I thought. I’ll never hear the end of this one. As I shamefully lowered the kite down from the wires to try and untangle it, my granddaughter scampered by me with a giggle. “Let’s play hide-and-seek, grandpa. I’ll be the seeker.” I breathed a great sigh of relief. Thank goodness, I thought. Thank goodness for the truly forgiving nature... and the very short attention span of a four-year-old.
Freelance writer and newspaper columnist, Jeffery Cohen, has written for Sasee, Lifetime and Read, Learn, Write. He’s won awards in Women-On-Writing Contest, Vocabula’s Well Written Contest, National League of American Pen Women’s’ Keats Competition, Southern California Genealogy Competition, and Writer’s Weekly writing contest.
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Guts and Glory by Diane DeVaughn Stokes
I come from a long line of gorgeous women who aged beautifully into their eighties with pride and gusto. From grandmothers to aunts and cousins, they all realized that they were truly blessed to have lived such a grand full life, but they weren’t giving up on their looks… EVER! They creamed their faces nightly and went to bed smelling like Noxzema. (God bless their husbands). They moisturized every morning and never left home without make-up, rouge, and eye-make-up galore! They wore snazzy clothes. Next to skincare, haircare was a priority hitting the beauty parlor weekly. My Aunt Jean even wore false eyelashes into her eighties even though sadly the older she got, the more lop-sided the lashes got! And she never missed her manicures and nail over-lay application. Most impressive was that she was born a brunette but in her mid-thirties, she got a wild hair, if you will excuse the pun, and became totally blonde truly believing that blondes have more fun! It wasn’t until she was in her eighties that she let her tresses gray-out! Now as for my maternal grandmother, she used to say she hated hanging out with old people and bitterly fought moving to a senior facility because she felt that she was too young at eighty-two to be there. And it wasn’t until she was eighty that she stopped dying her blue-ish black hair and finally surrendered to the gray. The family all thought she looked softer and younger as a result of the natural transition, but she hated hearing it. Nana, whose favorite color was hot pink and wore it religiously, had a stubborn streak, and would have never admitted that the family was right! Just yesterday, my own mom who is eighty-eight asked to borrow my lipstick. She lives at an assisted living facility but refuses to leave her room without it. Before the move, she had thirty-seven tubes of the stuff but because she is now somewhat confused, I only set up five tubes on her new bathroom counter. You see, Mom’s generation was the lipstick-wearing crew, never going anywhere without it. She used to 34 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
tell me to never go to a store to try on clothes without make-up and lipstick in place or nothing will look good and you will come out empty-handed. She was right as usual! And mom, who has never dyed her hair and accepted the salt and pepper look with grace, still sets her hair with bobby pins and wire curlers of yesteryear every single night before going to bed. I have never known her to miss the regime knowing she would not leave her room if her hair were not combed out properly with lipstick in place. I get it. I really do. And I hope I will take care of myself that well if I am lucky to make it to eighty-eight. So, as you can see, all of my female role models aged with quite a bit of attitude. None of them had any kind of cosmetic surgery, but then again it wasn’t as popular as it is now. All of them have said they were just grateful to be alive with decent health. They often said age was in the mind of the beholder. Age is just a number. Wrinkles only appear where smiles have once been. Age only matters if you are a cheese! And the saying I heard the most when I was growing up was that growing old is not for sissies, but it beats the alternative! Yet, as you have read, they may have talked the talk but didn’t always walk the walk. They surely never gave up on their gumption and desire to look younger. Who knows? Vanity may be a negative thing when we are younger, but perhaps it keeps us young mentally and physically the older we get! I started to believe that more so after I read the book “When I Am Old I Will Wear Purple.” It’s a marvelously encouraging rendition of narratives from many writers about their aging experience. It’s crazy to think about, but I certainly work in a job that thrives on vanity. I used to say that I was going to retire from TV before HD cameras entered the studio because of their clarity to expose every flaw. But I’m still at it! I simply hold on to the fact that most of my viewers have been with me for forty-eight years and are probably having the same insecurities as I am.
Just last month, I noticed the dreaded sag under my upper arms. It’s one thing on my upper leg because no one sees that unless I am in a bathing suit. But you can’t wear sleeveless tops and not feel selfconscious when the Jell-O-like Bat Wings as they call it are flapping in the breeze! I actually prefer the term Angel Wings! My eyelids too seem to be drooping. But you know what? I am alive and so far, not facing any chemo or radiation. And I get up every morning feeling so blessed. Let me salute and thank the beloved women in my life. I would NEVER say that they aged “gracefully” accepting the changes that come with getting older. Their aging dance was never a ballet, but more like a jitterbug on speed!!! They loved life and faced it head-on with vigor and a lot of hard work to look beautiful and younger at all times. And they all wore purple right to the end. God willing, I am trying to have the guts and glory to be just like them!
Diane DeVaughn Stokes is the co-owner of Stages Video Productions in Myrtle Beach and the Host and Producer of “Inside Out” on HTC channel 4. She and her husband Chuck share passions for their three four-legged kids, theater, travel, and scuba diving. Diane is the author of “Floating on Air- A Broadcasting Love Affair” about her many years in Radio and Television.
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How Multi-Generational Friendships Transformed My Life by Rebecca Deurlein
My relationships through numbers: I am 54 years old. My youngest friend is 21. My oldest friend is in her 80’s (she won’t tell me her exact age, but she spilled that much over one too many glasses of wine one night). My 30-year-old daughter thinks these friendships are cool and my 28-yearold son finds them bizarre. Maybe it’s a female thing, the fact that we women value our relationships so deeply that at some point we stop noticing mundane details - the youthful luster of one friend’s hair and the graying spikes of another’s - and just appreciate them for the way they make us feel, act, think, and believe. Multi-generational friendships are not something I sought out; they just sort of happened to me as a matter of course. But if I were to tell you that one of my youngest friends helped me find my dream job and one of my oldest changed my life’s priorities, it might make you ask yourself why you’re still hanging out with your same-age crowd. I was fortunate to spend 24 years as a high school teacher. One could say that being around teenagers kept me youthful, or at least young-minded, as I laughed with them every day and spent enough time with them to know how special they were, teenage angst and all. As they graduated, some kept in touch, and when Facebook became a thing, they sent me friend requests. This made staying on each other’s radar so much easier, but it did another thing - it gave me a window into their adult lives and allowed me to see how they evolved. One of my former journalism students is now in her thirties and works, as I do, as a freelance writer. When she scored her first byline in Southern Living, I sent a congratulations message and asked how she had done it. This led to a phone conversation that opened my eyes to how things have changed in the publishing world. I had been sending emails when all along I should have been following people on Instagram and Twitter. Who knew? She did because she is young and hip and technologically savvy. When you’re my age, you suffer in at least one of those categories. In a true “student becomes the teacher” scenario, she schooled me in the way things are done now, and without her, I would never have known. My eighty-something-year-old friend is equally wise but benefits from a lifetime of experiences bolstered by the 38 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
benefits of hindsight. She regales me with stories of the joys of grand and great-grandchildren and reminds me that what’s going on in my career is woefully less important than what’s going on with my family. She has shown me - with her own body and mind - how important it is to take care of myself, to stay healthy and strong, and to be active. She reminds me that giving back to the community in which I live is my way of building a better community for those who come after me. She shares her mistakes so that I might avoid making them myself. And she tells me I should seek and try and explore anything I want to because looking back, life went by in a flash. The beauty of multi-generational friendships is that they provide a wide-angle-lens-view of life. My young friends electrify me with their enthusiasm and their “world is my oyster” view of life. When I’m feeling tired and bored, they invigorate me. My older friends keep me focused on the here and now and remind me to slow down and savor life. The irony is really quite astonishing - both generations are 100 percent right. I’m grateful for my young and old friends. Where one teaches me how to maneuver in an ever-changing world and reawakens my enthusiasm for sidelined dreams, the other reminds me to stop running, to relax, and to enjoy the fruits of my labor. They are bookends to a life well-lived, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything.
is a Houston-based freelance writer and the author of the non-fiction parenting book Teenagers 101 (Harper Collins). She has been featured in numerous and varied publications, including Huffington Post.
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Celebra ting 75 years! On the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk one block south of the SkyWheel® 916 N. Ocean Blvd., Myrtle Beach, SC • Open daily from 9:30 a.m.
Dog Days of Summer
Oil Changes • Maintenance • Diagnostic AC & Heating • Brakes • Cooling System Check Engine Lights
Foreign • Domestic • Cars • Trucks • SUVs “Your Hometown Auto Repair”
Carolina Car Care Locally Owned & Operated for 26 years
843-357-0862 860 Inlet Square Drive • Murrells Inlet 40 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
Curtains -N- Things “Curtains, Home Decor & Gift Store”
843.248.5665 1014 Third Ave, Downtown Conway www.curtainsnthings.net Mon-Fri 10-5:30 Sat 10-5 Sasee.com :: August 2021 :: 41
SHOP THE UNUSUAL
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John S. Gore, Owner, Designer, Allied ASID 843-692-7844 • email@example.com SHOWROOM LOCATION: 1307 ENTERPRISE AVE. MYRTLE BEACH BETWEEN GRISSOM PKWY. & SEABOARD STREET • BGRAHAMINTERIORS.COM MON - FRI 9am - 5pm • SAT BY APPOINTMENT
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Cleaning & Linen Rentals 843-299-0247
671 Jamestown Dr., Unit R2 • Garden City, SC 29576 firstname.lastname@example.org
SUN, SEPT. 26, 2021 | 4:00 PM
Opposite Ends of the Spectrum: Strings, Percussion and Beyond Featuring oboist James Austin Smith
SUN., NOV. 7, 2021 | 4:00 PM
Featuring ECU Piano Competition Winner Anna Bray
SUN, JAN. 30, 2022 | 4:00 PM
The Romantic Legacy: from Rossini to Ravel
SUN., APR. 24, 2022 | 4:00 PM
A Melancholy Beauty:
Special Presentation in Conjunction with Violins of Hope & Varna International’s Songs of Life
Featuring the Carolina Master Chorale, soloists from the National folklore Ensemble “Philip Kutev” of Bulgaria, and vocal soloists
SAT., MAR. 26, 2022 | 7:00 PM
One Vision: The Music of Queen
Featuring violinist Benjamin Baker
FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL 843.448.8379 OR VISIT US ONLINE AT www.LongBaySymphony.com
42 :: Sasee.com :: August 2021
B. Graham Interiors Collection.......42 Bethea Baptist Retirement Community..................15 Bleu ..............................................29 Bloomingails...................................25 Brightwater ....................................43 Brookgreen Gardens ........................5 Carolina Car Care...........................40 Champion Autism Network...........24 The Clean Up Club........................42 Coastal Luxe Interiors.....................33 Curtains n Things...........................41 Custom Outdoor Furniture............44 Design on a Dime...........................25 Doodlebugs......................................8 Dr. Grabeman.................................37 Dr. Sattele’s Rapid Weight Loss & Esthetics Centers........................23 Eleanor Pitts Gifts & Jewelry............8 Flooring Plus..................................24 Gay Dolphin..................................40 Good Deed Goods..........................33 Grady’s Jewelers..............................22 The Hammock Shops Village............9 Hope Taylor....................................19 Inspire Coastal Grand.......................8 The Joggling Board.........................24 The Lakes at Litchfield .....................7 LampLighter...................................19 Laid Back Charters.........................13 Long Bay Symphony.......................42 Moore, Johnson & Saraniti.............31 Palmetto Ace...................................40 Papa John’s Pizza ............................32 Pawleys Island Festival of Music & Art...................36 Prodigy Kitchens & Baths...............29 PruittHealth ..................................11 Renewal by Andersen .......................2 Rescued Treasures...........................39 Rice Birds.......................................31 Rose Arbor Fabrics and Interiors.....37 Rover Boat Tours............................36 Shades & Draperies........................15 Shine Café......................................39 Speech Solutions ...........................13 St. Gabriel Assisted Living & Memory Care.............................35 Sunset River Marketplace................35 Sunspace of Myrtle Beach...............22 Surf Unlimited Mercantile................3 Tidelands Community Hospice......37 Wilson Senior Care.........................41
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