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December C O N T E N T S

Letter from the Editor ............................................................. 6

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Past SWM Events ..................................................................... 7 Fashion Forward: Stress-free Festivities ............................... 8 Syracuse Eats: The Stoop Kitchen...................................... 10

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WBOC Leading Woman: Rosemary Mondo .................... 16 Healthy Woman: A Holly, Jolly, Wholly Holiday ............... 18 Syracuse Reads: Modern Spice .......................................... 22 Special Feature: How to Eat for the Holidays ...................25

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Cover Story: Linda Lopez ........................................................27 For a Good Cause: Give to Others ......................................32 Fitness: Shopping for Your Runner..................................... 34

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Inspire: Ashley Trahan ........................................................... 36 Inspire: Annie Taylor ..................................................................40 Inspire: Sheila Austin ............................................................ 44 Special Feature: A Year in Review.........................................47

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Upcoming Events ................................................................. 48 Movers and Shakers ............................................................. 50

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The Holiday Edition


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LETTER from the Editor S

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elcome to the holiday edition. This is both my favorite and last favorite time of the year, with traditions, memories, festivities and stress all wrapped up in a not-always-so-neat package. Don’t get me wrong — I wouldn’t trade the visits with family and friends, weekends of dessert making and cozy evenings for anything. But, sometimes, I wish we could spread the season over just a few extra weeks. One more month to squeeze everything in would make quite the difference. Maybe it would be easier if we had a couple more hours of sunshine each day. I’ve learned (or, maybe more aptly put, I’m learning) to be thankful for every wonderfully bright moment of this season, be that light from the sun or the tree lights. And for the moments and days when the schedule seems too impossibly packed, the oven just isn’t working with you and the sun seems to set far too early, I try to remember a few things. Of course, I’ll be the first to admit it’s not always easy to keep things in perspective when I feel buried under stress. So, this letter is as much a friendly reminder to myself as it is a letter to you, reader. My Holiday Season Survival List:

Publisher

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

David Tyler

Editor Lorna Oppedisano

Design Andrea Reeves

Photography Amy Davis Edges Photography Alexis Emm Christian Mae Jackson Mary Grace Johnson Steven J. Pallone Alice G. Patterson

Riley Bunch Amy Caputo Shauna Diliberto Jasmine Gomez Susie Ippolito Christine A. Krahling Emily Kulkus Samantha Leader Kate D. Mahoney Holly Lowery Lorna Oppedisano Gabrielle Reagan

Advertising sales Linda Jabbour 315.657.0849

Renée Moonan 315.657.7690

ADVERTISE WITH US 1) It’s very hard to function well without your health. For me, I’m not myself if I’m not active in some way each day, whether it’s a run at the gym, a walk in the woods or just some quick yoga. Especially since the lack of sunshine and green leaves tends to get me down, remembering to stick to some sort of workout schedule during the holiday and winter season is an important one for me. 2) Don’t get caught up in the season. With this one, I’m writing more about the commercial side of the holidays. A handmade ornament or even a heartfelt letter can mean a whole lot more than an expensive gift you picked ups from a busy, stressinducing store in the mall. 3) People will understand if you can’t visit them on the holiday you celebrate. There are only so many hours in the day, and so, so many people to see. It’s inevitable that you’ll see some the day or weekend before or after. Look on the bright side: this extends the holiday season! 4) Take a moment to reflect. Think about the year behind you, and the year ahead of you. Be thankful for both. Set goals for next year, and start to think about how you’ll achieve them.

Lorna On Our Cover: Linda Lopez was photographed by Alice G. Patterson of Alice G. Patterson Photography at The Salvation Army offices in Syracuse. Special thanks to Jillain Pastella Salomone, owner of J. Luxe Salon, for Linda’s makeup styling. SYRACUSEWOMANMAG.COM

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Happy holidays and happy new year!

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Unlike any other publication in the Syracuse 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 Syracuse women. Ads are due on the 15th of the month prior to publication. The print magazines will be distributed locally in over 350 locations and will be in your inbox electronically by the middle of every month. The publication is available free of charge.

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The Holiday Edition


PAST SWM Events

The American Heart Association held the 14th annual Go Red for Women Luncheon on Oct. 26 at the Oncenter Convention Center in Syracuse. More than 600 women and men attended. The year-round Go Red campaign raised more $370,000. Syracuse Woman Magazine supports the event each year as a media sponsor. Photography by Edges Photography. December 2017

Welch & Company Jewelers and Syracuse Woman Magazine hosted a Holiday Ladies Night on Thursday, Nov. 16. Zonta's Styles and Sweets for Scholars Fashion Show was held on Nov. 12 at Embassy Suites at Destiny USA. More than 150 guests helped Syracuse Zonta Foundation raise more than $7,500 for scholarships. SYRACUSEWOMANMAG.COM

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FASHION FORWARD Stress-free Festivities

Celebrate in Style By Shauna Diliberto

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he most magical time of year is here — the holidays! This is my favorite time to check in with the people I love and show gratitude for all we have. A great way to do this is to host a stress-free, budget-friendly gathering. Here’s how:

1. Holiday decorating: You don’t need to go

out and purchase all new decorations just because it’s the holidays. Instead, opt for more modern neutral designs and patterns that can be used all season long. Plaid cloth napkins, a striped linen tablecloth and fresh-picked greens work perfectly. Add some gold or rose gold candlesticks or vases for a metallic touch. Just because there’s not a Santa on it, doesn’t mean it’s not festive.

2. Have fun with glassware and serveware:

This is the place to be a little quirky and retro. Check out your local vintage stores and thrift stores for these things. A punchbowl is a super fun throwback way to serve your signature cocktail. Moscow mule mugs, highball glasses and old-fashioned coupes are also a great way to serve a drink. Mix and match some vintage holiday china and vintage rattan trays and baskets for a “boho” feel.

3. Go gift-free: Save everyone some time and money

by making it a no-present party. This will make the evening more about having a good time and being together, and less about gifts and the stress that comes with them.

Photography by Christian Mae Jackson

4. Give guests a heads up on dress code:

And please do not make it an ugly sweater party. If you plan on being dressed up, make sure your guests know, so they aren’t uncomfortable when they show up in everyday wear. With that being said, have fun. It’s the holidays; this is the perfect time to wear sparkles and velvets. I have a New Year’s Eve tradition at my house of sparkles and sweats. After a full season of being dressed up, I love being comfortable in my favorite leggings and topping it off with a cute sparkly blazer or sweater. It’s the best of both worlds. Not everyone plays along, but at least everyone knows what to expect, so they are prepared.

5. Celebrate: Whatever sort of holiday party you’re

throwing, remember to have fun. It can be such a stressful time, so keep it simple, use what you already have and enjoy the people in your life. Cheers! SWM

Shauna Diliberto owns Maeflowers Vintage. For more information, visit maeflowersvintage.com. Props provided by Driftwood + Glitter, Buttercup Lane Vintage and Mayflowers Vintage.

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SYRACUSE EATS The Stoop Kitchen

sarah hassler and abigail henson

“[The Stoop Kitchen is] about a space to share stories, a place where traditions are born and legacies are built.” — Abigail Henson, The Stoop Kitchen chief inspiration officer and collaborator

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Photography by Steven J. Pallone

THE STOOP KITCHEN’S EXECUTIVE CHEF AND CHIEF INSPIRATION OFFICER

The Holiday Edition


Revisiting The Stoop By Gabrielle Reagan

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open kitchen and locally-sourced menus (brunch, bakery, bar and dinner) that shift with the seasons. The first floor is chic with cozy booths, a full bar and a small café, complete with a bright, canary yellow espresso machine. The second floor pays homage to the past, with The Stoop’s original painted floors and murals, tequila bar — now with 160 tequila options — and those same soughtafter outdoor patio seats. A crucial player in the restaurant’s rebirth is Syracuse native Abigail Henson, The Stoop Kitchen’s chief inspiration officer. Owner of former downtown eatery LoFo, Abigail is a farm-to-table restaurateur and conscious food advocate. “I needed LoFo to sit on the back burner for a minute for this to live and breathe on its own,” Abigail said. “For me, LoFo is my daily message, but this is a different channel to engage the community in local food.” Wanting to step back from the kitchen, Abigail put an ad on Craigslist and eventually connected with Sarah Hassler. Sarah, whose vision of food and community aligned with Abigail’s, is now The Stoop Kitchen’s executive chef. She works closely with more than 40 farms and farmers to ensure that 80 percent of the menu comes from within 50 miles of the restaurant. Having grown up on a dairy farm, farm-to-table isn’t just a trend for Sarah. It’s in her blood.

Photography by Steven J. Pallone

he year is 1995. Clinton is president. Gillian Anderson, perpetually skeptical Agent Scully, is a sex symbol. And Alanis Morissette’s “Ironic” is playing on loop in our collective consciousness. You pass through the front door at 311 W. Fayette St. and climb the narrow staircase to the painted floor of a littleknown dive dubbed The Stoop, feeling both curious and expectant. Then, as if by magic, you feel far from Syracuse, a part of some cool secret. For owner Eric Alderman and guests alike, that was the allure of The Stoop. It was beyond an ordinary bar or restaurant. It was an experience, a concept. It was as much a getaway as it was a gathering spot, an offering to the community. And, yes, there was a lot of tequila. Predominately a margarita bar featuring a small galley kitchen and enchanting outdoor patio, The Stoop was a Syracuse staple before it closed in 2006. After that, the familiar Stoop sign hung, unlit, alongside the vacant building for more than a decade. “I couldn’t sell it, or the building,” Eric said. “Deep down, I always knew I’d reopen someday.” And, in October 2017, he did. The beloved eatery has returned as a reimagined and expanded version of itself: The Stoop Kitchen. Playing at novelty and nostalgia, this hip and homey three-story restaurant boasts two unique bars, a bakery café, an expanded

The Stoop Kitchen’s chicken entree features rotisserie chicken, freekeh mac & cheese, cinnamon lemon mushrooms and a cider reduction. December 2017

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SYRACUSE EATS The Stoop Kitchen Revisiting The Stoop continued from page 11 “To me, it’s just the way you cook,” she explained. “I don’t think there’s any other way.” Offering plenty of options for people with dietary restrictions, the menu strives for inclusiveness and showcases the seasons, as well as the talents of French baker Yemen Tounsi. Salads, small plates and entrees are all available, as well as cheese plates and charcuterie, including vegan cheese. Keep an eye out for the pumpkin lasagna and, Sarah’s personal favorite, traditional British pork pie. Visit the café for bread, pastries and coffee products by Ithaca’s Forty Weight Coffee Roasters. The team is also planning a program called The Stoop Kitchen Give-It-Back Initiative. Each year, The Stoop Kitchen plans to donate a portion of profits to local socially-motivated not-for-profits. They also plan to offer gathering space to groups and organizations that aim to further awareness of issues like conscious food and sourcing, ethical eating and nutrition, including LoFo. “No other restaurant created a memory for me like The Stoop did,” Abigail said. She described a message she remembered that was on the wall of the original restaurant. It was a story about family, friends and neighbors congregating, she said. “It’s about a space to share stories, a place where traditions are born and legacies are built,” Abigail said. “I didn’t realize then, but the writing was literally on the wall.”

Deep down, I always knew I’d reopen someday.” — Eric Alderman, The Stoop original owner and The Stoop Kitchen owner

The Stoop Kitchen is located at 311 W. Fayette St. in Syracuse. The Stoop Bakery Café is open 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekends. The restaurant serves dinner from 6 to 10 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays, and 5 to 9 p.m. Sundays, with a Sunday brunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The bar menu is available 4 p.m. to close Wednesdays through Saturdays. Reservations are accepted. For more information, contact info@thestoopkitchen.com or call 315-257-7000.

SWM

The Stoop Kitchen’s salmon entree features pan-seared salmon, pickle roasted oyster mushrooms, jeweled rice and roasted grapes.

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The Holiday Edition


Cheers! Celebrate the Season with Friends! Greenwood Winery & Bistro

HARVEST HOUR in the Bistro Bar Monday - Thursday 4 to 6 p.m. Build Your Own 10" Flatbreads! 1 Topping $7; add'l $1.50 2 for 1 Drink Specials Domestic Beer and Wines WINE WEDNESDAY MUSIC at 1060 Restaurant

Tailwater Grille

Tasting & Tunes Sundays 1:30 to 4:30 p.m.

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WBOC leading woman Rosemary Mondo

Healthy Travels By Riley Bunch

You can’t create something that you aren’t passionate about.” — Rosemary Mondo, Via Mondo Lifestyle Tours owner and founder

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Photography by Alice G. Patterson

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rom an early age, Rosemary Mondo had strong ties to her Italian heritage. First generation Americans, Rosemary and her brother grew up with the strong influence of their parents’ Sicilian roots. Traveling frequently from their home in Syracuse to Italy, Rosemary didn’t consider herself Italian-American, but an Italian growing up in America. Now, Rosemary shares her cultural experiences with others through Via Mondo, a full-service travel agency and tour company. Her company focuses on visiting Italy and select other countries through tailor-made health and wellness trips. “I’ve always had this international flare,” Rosemary said. “It was just in my blood.” After earning a master’s degree in Italian through Middlebury College in Florence, she decided to share her love for Italy with others. With the support of her parents and brother, business owners themselves, Rosemary left her position as sales director and operations manager for a bicycle tour company in Boston to launch Via Mondo, her own service for guided and independent tours. “I always knew I had it in me, the spirit of doing something myself,” Rosemary said.“The best way to learn how to run a company is to run a company.” In 2014, Rosemary launched her business, an independent travel agency offering both guided group trips as well as independently-planned itineraries. A certified yoga instructor and trainer, Rosemary accompanied group tours and offered Kripalu yoga classes throughout the day. Being a business owner didn’t come without challenges. Shortly after her website’s debut, it was hacked. After that, Rosemary started thinking about focusing more heavily on the market niche of health tourism. “[Health is] what I am passionate about. You can’t create something that you aren’t passionate about,” she said. The revamping of Via Mondo included more wellness-focused accommodation and amenities. Rosemary sought out health-conscious hotels. Not only does she want her guests to experience the height of Italian culture, she wants them to eat and sleep well and exercise. Organizing itineraries based on her travel experiences, past guided trips and the traveler’s budget and needs, Rosemary incorporates a variety of activities, including volunteerism. It not only helps those who benefit from it, she explained, but is good for the spirit of the volunteer. She aims for her travelers to become disconnected from phones and social media and get back to the basics of their health. In addition to her yoga certification and travel agency experience, Rosemary is a certified wellness specialist, and is working toward certification as a wellness practitioner. Via Mondo currently offers trips throughout Italy to Tuscany, Sicily and Sardinia. The company also showcases trips to the Caribbean, North America and other regions of Europe. In the future, Rosemary would like to add trips to Australia and New Zealand, and isn’t opposed to taking travelers to other countries. She’s gone with groups to Thailand, Africa and China, as well. Wherever Via Mondo takes Rosemary and her clients, health will be at the core of each experience. “The definition of a wellness trip is maintaining or jumpstarting your healthy lifestyle,” Rosemary explained. “People are looking to get out and away and help themselves become more centered and balanced.” SWM

Special thanks to lululemon for Rosemary’s outfit. For more information on Via Mondo, visit viamondo.net. Women Business Opportunities Connections (WBOC) is a non-profit organization that has been supporting the Syracuse and CNY area for more than 20 years. To become a member, visit wboconnection.org or follow the organization on Twitter at @WBOConnection. Syracuse Woman Magazine is a signature sponsor of the WBOC. The Holiday Edition


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healthy woman A Holly, Jolly, Wholly Holiday

Mindful Holidays By Susie Ippolito

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oliday fatigue — we’re all guilty of it. We start each holiday season with the best of intentions. We promise ourselves to ease up on expectations, to relax and to enjoy family and friends. We’ll eat well, exercise and participate in holiday fun. But somehow, someway, we end up overwhelmed and exhausted, wondering how the holiday season blew past us so quickly. Staying mindful of our intentions throughout the holiday season isn’t an easy task, so we asked the experts.

The good news: in mindfulness, small gestures have huge rewards and all it takes is a bit of practice. As with anything new, the first step is usually the one we resist the most. Our minds flood with excuses as we successfully talk ourselves out of good choices. A good first step toward mindfulness is to give yourself permission to explore what makes you feel happy, satisfied and content during the holidays. What traditions do you most value? Which ones do not bring you joy?

Pick a pattern “Mindfulness is a transformation of the mind, one that is intentional,”said Upstate Yoga Institute instructor, David Jacobs. “It is a commitment to a new pattern.” It’s a gentle process that takes practice, he explained. Whether you choose to deck the halls to the hilt or just keep things simple, start each day by choosing to live in that intention. This can be an empowering experience, David said; mindful intention creates the awareness that there may be a better way of doing things. “This leads us to make mindful choices about what is appropriate,” he said. Staying centered in our intentions can be challenging during the holidays, when the distractions are endless. To stay aligned with our intentions, David suggested asking ourselves: “Am I following my best intention?” If you are, keep moving toward it. If not, simply take a moment to connect with your breath and make the appropriate adjustments.

A COUPLE MORE MINDFUL TIPS O Yoga founder Tiffany Cagwin offered some advice to address the physical aspect of holiday stress. “Our minds get tangled up with the expectations of the season,” Tiffany said, “and we find our bodies in a much greater state of motion and physical stress during these months.”

TIFFANY’S TIPS: Start and end your day with meditation.

Allow yourself a few moments every day to stop and breathe. • Turn your attention inward and let your mind rest. • Don’t fight your thoughts; let them happen. • Bring attention to each thought and then let the thought slide by. • After three to five minutes of quiet pause, take in the calming effect you’ve allowed for your mind and body. 18

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Prepare your body. If you’re looking forward to a day of hauling bags and moving

merchandise, take a few minutes to do some forward folds, both seated and standing, to help awaken the back side of your body. • Slowly rise to stand, with your arms extended overhead, reaching as far to the ceiling as you can. • Feel your feet ground into the floor and your side body expand. • Stay here for a few rounds of breath. • Slowly fold back to the floor and release the tension in your back-side body.

The Holiday Edition


UPCOMING EVENTS

Dr. Cathy J. Berry, MD, and Associates’ Centering Pregnancy pre-natal care program provides mindful education and support for moms-to-be. For more information, visit CathyJBerryMD.com. Upstate Yoga Institute offers donation-based classes throughout the month of December to benefit the Center for New Americans. Suggested donation range is $5 to $20. For more information, visit UpstateYogaInstitute.com.

Stay healthy Stress doesn’t limit itself to one part of the body, like a cold, explained Dr. Cathy Berry of Dr. Cathy J. Berry, MD, and Associates. “Instead, it attacks our whole body,” she said. Stress can take the form of “headaches, hot flashes, mood swings” and various other physical ailments we often ignore, Cathy said. “We create a great deal of our own stress during the holidays by expecting too much from ourselves,” she said. Cathy recommended staying as healthy as possible, which means “sticking to a healthy diet, getting enough sleep and continuing to exercise.” She also advised against overextending ourselves. Staying tied to your intention will be helpful when social obligations start to overtake personal time or when the budget begins to bend.

Treat yourself Winter break should be mandatory for everyone. “It’s a natural time to pause, to reflect and to gently ready yourself for the year ahead,” said Melissa O’Mara, founder of The Leader’s Co-Lab. Melissa is an expert on mindful leadership and healthy, conscious work practices. She advised us to make the most of the year’s final week. “Schedule as much time off as you can afford — even if it’s a half-day,” she said. Plan a date with yourself and use that time to connect with yourself. Melissa suggested asking: “What is the gift

O Yoga plans to hold its Beginner I Workshop series in January. Those new to the practice can also take advantage of New Student Special pricing. Or, kick off the new year with intent at O Yoga’s special New Year’s Day class, Awaken: A Special New Year’s Day Yoga Practice. Check out The Leader’s Co-Lab website, TheLeadersCoLab.com, to learn more about how mindful awareness can build successful teams and create healthy work environments. Sign up for Melissa’s monthly newsletter, and get a free paper about how leaders can tap into their head, heart and gut intelligence at work.

you want to give yourself?” Perhaps it’s a spa day. Maybe it’s a day of blissful binge watching. Maybe it’s a good book and a glass of wine. Whatever it is, take time for yourself and do things that make your heart happy for one day. You may enjoy it so much that you remember to do it more often. The mind-body connection is a powerful tool we can all use to connect with calm and allow in more happiness. Try any or all of these suggestions to help you experience the holiday season in the way that will bring you the most joy. SWM

To read more from writer Susie Ippolito, visit susieippolito.com. Upstate Yoga Institute is located at 6843 E. Genesee St. in Fayetteville. For more information, visit upstateyogainstitute.com or call 315-445-4894. Cathy J Berry MD and Associates’ Syracuse office is located at 101 Pine St. The Baldwinsville office is located at 8280 Willett Parkway Suite 201. For more information, visit cathyjberrymd.com or call 315-422-8105 (Syracuse office) or 315-638-0263 (Baldwinsville office). O Yoga’s new Syracuse studio is located at 225 Wilkinson St. The Fayetteville DeWitt studio is located at 4465 E. Genesee St. For more information, visit theoyogastudio.com or call 315-314-7754 (Syracuse studio) or 315-314-7915 (DeWitt office). For more information on The Leaders Co-Lab, visit theleaderscolab.com, email info@theleaderscolab.com or call 315-427-0263. December 2017

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Syracuse Reads Modern Spice

Spicing Up the Kitchen By Christine A. Krahling

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his month, we had a chance to talk with Monica Bhide, author of “Modern Spice: Inspired Indian Flavors for the Contemporary Kitchen.” Find out what Monica thinks about our evolving food culture, the role Pinterest plays in cooking and if it’s OK to use packaged spices in Indian cooking.

SWM: You mention in your book that traditional Indian cooking has been perceived as “difficult” and “fussy.” However, you also write “the foundation of modern Indian cooking is perfection in simplicity.” How has traditional Indian cooking evolved into something simpler?

Monica: Modern Indian cooking — as I have presented it — stays true to the flavors of India and doesn’t compromise on taste. For instance, none of my recipes have page-long lists of spices (a common occurrence with age-old books on the cuisine). My thought here was that leaving out an ingredient that is required as a pinch really will not change the dish that much. A shorter ingredient list also encourages novices to try a dish. They can always create lovely and complex dishes later, once they understand how the basic spices layer, how flavors mix and how basic Indian dishes are prepared. SWM: You learned to cook from both of your parents in what you call a “food-obsessed” household. How did their teachings shape the way you cook today?

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Monica: My father taught me the importance of experimenting. He would add oregano to traditional Indian-spiced okra! I learned at a young age not to be afraid of doing things differently. From my mom, I learned the classic way of making curries, just the right way to roast spices and how to be a patient cook. Also, in the traditional North Indian home I grew up in, we weren’t allowed to taste as we cooked, so I learned the art of cooking using my other senses more — the sound of sizzling spices, smell of sautéing garlic and visual clue of oil separating from a hot mixture indicating it was cooked. SWM: Let’s talk about the myth of using packaged spices in Indian cooking! Is it possible to cook Indian food without, as you say, “spending hours in the kitchen grinding and mixing?”

Monica: I am a huge proponent of buying packaged spices — individual and spice mixes. When you buy the individual spices, roasting them and grinding them doesn’t take but a few seconds. The mixed spice blends, though, can save you time and money. These didn’t exist a few years ago, and the ones that did were not very good. Now, there are multiple brands selling mixes for your favorite Indian dish, be it butter chicken, vindaloo, channa masala or tandoori chicken. I would recommend trying a few different brands and seeing which one your tastebuds respond to! SWM: You moved to the United States more than 20 years ago. As a foodie, I’m sure you’ve noticed a tremendous amount of change in the way Americans cook and eat today, compared to 20 years ago. What are some of the biggest changes you’ve noticed?

Monica: I think people have really taken to making more deliberate decisions around food. I find that more and more people are questioning what they are eating, reading labels more carefully and making proactive choices. I also think that with the advent of food blogging and accessibility to spices, people are less afraid of taking a risk with a dish. Typically, even just a few years ago, when a cook inexperienced with Indian cuisine wanted to make a dish, the spices were hard to find. Today, that is no longer the case. The cook can find the spices needed and not even worry about what to do with leftover spices after making the dish.

The Holiday Edition


This same access to information and terrific recipes (online and off) provides a level of comfort that did not exist before. An example: People cook from my book, post the images of the food on Pinterest and then send me a link, telling me how much they enjoyed it and what a fun dish it was to prepare. Word spreads and other people, who think a particular Indian dish was hard to prepare, may find that photo and try to cook the dish. I guess, in a way, it is food-networking! SWM: You say you are an “authentic” Indian and strongly believe authenticity is a state of mind. What do you mean by that?

Monica: Ah, my favorite question. I get into trouble for this so often that I use the term “traditional” now instead of authentic when I describe a dish, so as not to hurt sensibilities. Many books claim authenticity in their recipes, but who is to say, really? For instance, India is famous for its tomato-based curries, yet tomatoes were not even introduced into Indian cuisine until the 16th century. Chiles weren’t in Indian cuisine until sometime during the 15th century — how amazing is this fact, considering authentic Indian food is said to be hot and spicy! Now, does this fact make a curry prepared before that time, without tomatoes or chiles, any less authentic?

LET'S COOK!

with Monica Bhide

SWM: Good point! What advice do you have for novices who want to branch out and try their hand at cooking Indian food?

Monica: Just have fun! Pick your favorite dish and look online or through a cookbook for a recipe. My only serious advice is to use good-quality spices. Buy small quantities of good-quality spices and then let your imagination take over. SWM

Interview has been edited for length and clarity. For more information on Monica Bhide, visit monicabhide.com. For more by Christine A. Krahling, visit keepcalmandwrite.com. Food photography provided by Monia Bhide.

RICE PUDDING AND MANGO Serves four

This recipe uses cardamom seeds. To obtain them, open a green cardamom pod and use your fingers to coax the tiny seeds out. Pound them gently using a mortar and pestle or put them in a heavy-duty plastic bag and pound them with a hammer.

INGREDIENTS

3 cups whole milk 2 to 4 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk (4 tablespoons makes pudding very sweet; with 2 tablespoons, it’s sweet, but not overwhelmingly so) ¼ cup white basmati rice, rinsed and drained 1 teaspoon cardamom seeds, crushed 1 ripe mango, peeled and diced

DIRECTIONS

1. In a deep saucepan, bring whole milk and condensed milk to a boil over medium heat. Stir constantly to prevent scorching. 2. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add the rice and cardamom and mix well. Continue to cook for about 50 minutes, until milk has reduced by half and you obtain a creamy consistency. Stir frequently while cooking. 3. Remove from heat and allow to come to room temperature. 4. Refrigerate, covered, for at least an hour. 5. When ready to serve, spoon some pudding into a wine glass, layer with some mango and add another layer of rice pudding. Serve immediately. Did you know? Green cardamom is used in various forms around the world. People brew it in coffee, add it to liquors and perfumes and sauté it with rice and meats. In India, it’s eaten raw, whole (pod, seeds and all) as a digestive after a meal. It’s also sold covered in vark, an edible silver foil, that makes it appear as a small shiny stone. December 2017

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Syracuse Reads Modern Spice Spicing Up the Kitchen continued from page 23

LET'S COOK!

with Monica Bhide

PANEER AND FIG PIZZA Serves four Prep/cook time: 20 minutes

INGREDIENTS

One 12-inch pizza crust (use packaged crust or homemade dough) Nonstick cooking spray 1 cup crumbled or grated paneer 1 cup ricotta cheese 8 to 10 very ripe figs, trimmed and thinly sliced Table salt ¹/8 teaspoon ground white pepper 8 to 10 basil leaves

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray the crust with a mist of nonstick cooking spay. 2. In a bowl, combine paneer and ricotta, and mix well. Spread cheese mixture evenly over crust. Top with figs, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 3. Bake according to the directions given with the crust, usually about 10 to 12 minutes. The cheese will brown a little, but it is not a melting cheese, so don’t expect it to bubble. 4. Serve topped with fresh basil leaves. If your figs are really ripe, this will taste like a dessert!

BRUSSELS SPROUTS, LEEKS, AND CURRY LEAVES Serves four Prep/cook time: 25 minutes

Before using the sprouts, remove a few of the outer leaves if they are hard and damaged. Also, be sure the leeks are clean: after you have chopped them, place them in a bowl of cold water and then strain through a sieve. Place them on a paper towel and pat dry.

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds 10 to 15 fresh curry leaves 2 whole dried red chiles, broken 15 Brussels sprouts, trimmed and chopped (about 1 pound) 2 medium leeks, white and green parts only, chopped 3 tablespoons chopped dry-roasted peanuts 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric 1/2 teaspoon red chile powder or red chile flakes 1 teaspoon ground coriander 1/4 teaspoon table salt

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DIRECTIONS

1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large lidded skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the mustard seeds. When the seeds begin to sizzle, add the curry leaves, dried chiles, Brussels sprouts and leeks. 2. Sauté for five to six minutes on medium heat, until the vegetables begin to brown. 3. Add the peanuts, turmeric, red chile powder, coriander and salt. Mix well. Cook for another two minutes. 4. Add about a tablespoon of water, cover, and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until the vegetables are tender and completely cooked through. Serve immediately.

The Holiday Edition


SPECIAL FEATURE How to Eat for the Holidays

Staying Happy, Healthy and Sane Amidst the Chaos By Holly Lowery

December 2017

Photography by Mary Grace Johnson

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ou’re likely reading this article during some form of holiday madness. There’s always something to be doing — shopping, wrapping, planning, socializing with out-of-towners, baking, decorating — on top of your normal responsibilities. It would be easier if you knew exactly what to eat to keep your sanity intact. What I’m prescribing today isn’t the typical holiday nutrition advice. I’m not going to tell you to limit your dessert or wine intake or take one less helping of your favorite casserole. That may give you a sense of control when things seem like they’re spiraling, but how often has the “eat this, not that” method really made you feel satisfied? If you were left thinking about how badly you wanted to eat whatever dessert Grandma brought to Thanksgiving, you weren’t satisfied. The trouble with the “eat this, not that” method — or any diet, quite frankly — is it works against our biological instincts. We’re wired to feel hunger, find food and feed ourselves. We’re also wired to stop when we’ve satisfied that hunger. However, the multi-billion dollar dieting industry has convinced us we do not have the ability to trust those biological instincts. We’ve been made to believe that to be healthy, we have to work at maintaining or losing weight. The problem is there’s no research to date that’s proven dieting prolongs life or increases health in the long term. In fact, most of the long-term studies show just the opposite; dieting and weight cycling cause greater health problems, such as cardiovascular disease, muscle deterioration, metabolic damage, digestion issues and more. So, how will you make it through the holidays without feeling weighed down by too much ham, casserole and pie? How will you make your health a priority in the new year if dieting won’t actually help? Here’s the answer: Get back to your intuitive, instinctual relationship with food. Give yourself permission to eat the pie, to eat whatever Grandma is bringing, to eat exactly what you want. When you give yourself full permission to eat whatever it is you truly desire, the question becomes, “What is it that you really want?” You’ll probably find the answer isn’t that you want the whole pie. You just want a slice. The key is to remove the scarcity factor. Biologically speaking, when we think food is scarce — for example, during famine,

or back in our primal days when food was hunted and gathered to sustain a population — we’re wired to stock up when we do have access to it. Your body wants you to hoard food, so you can survive when the scarcity next sets in. Even though we’ve since evolved and no longer need to spend all our time finding food, the biological mechanisms that drive us to “stock up” during times of scarcity are still intact. So, when we grant ourselves permission, we’re letting our bodies know food is not scarce; it doesn’t have to hold onto every last calorie. With practice, our hunger hormones readjust. The desire to overeat melts away, allowing us to take on the holidays without fear of eating too much. Once our bodies know there’s going to be an adequate amount of food coming, they can turn their focus to things like improving digestive function, assimilating vitamins and minerals, regulating our hormones and metabolism, building and repairing tissues — the things that do bring us more health! So this holiday season, I suggest you let go of your diet. Let go of the urge to control, count and measure. Grant yourself permission to eat what you want and notice how your cravings shift. SWM Holly Lowery is a Syracuse-based health and wellness coach. For more information, visit hollylowery.com. Special thanks to Café at 407 in Liverpool for the photo shoot location. SYRACUSEWOMANMAG.COM

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The Holiday Edition


COVER STORY Linda Lopez

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR FOR COMMUNITY SERVICES AT THE SALVATION ARMY, SYRACUSE AREA SERVICES

Photography by Alice G. Patterson

We don’t shy away from populations or problems that might feel daunting in many ways. We run toward those.” — Linda Lopez, executive director for community services at The Salvation Army, Syracuse Area Services

linda lopez

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COVER STORY Linda Lopez

Leading the Army of Good By Lorna Oppedisano

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inda Lopez was going to run The Washington Post. After moving around the country with her family — her father was in the military — she landed at Syracuse University’s S. I. Newhouse School of Public Communications to study journalism, and make a positive impact on the world. Her first story for the college newspaper, The Daily Orange, made the cover page, a tale about the newly built Carrier Dome. Sophomore year, she was made managing editor. Also during her time at the university, the fall of her first semester in Syracuse, she was introduced to the area’s nonprofit community through a part-time weekend job at the Rescue Mission’s alcohol crisis center. It was a major turning point in her life. Despite dreams of journalism she’d carried through junior high and high school, she’d found a new path she loved, Linda remembered. “I just fell in love with that kind of work,” she said. “I fell in love with being able to be there for people — being able to do simple things like know everybody’s name, say ‘Good morning’ and talk to people.” Linda switched gears, and began her nonprofit and human services career with 14 years at the Rescue Mission. She did “a variety of things,” she recalled, including opening an education center for the homeless. She then served as director of program services at The Salvation Army, where she remained for about 12 years, before working for the county until late 2016. Last year in November, Linda returned to The Salvation Army, this time as executive director for community services. She wasn’t looking for a job change, but found the perfect fit. “I love nonprofit, but I love The Salvation Army,” Linda said. “I love what The Salvation Army does. I love what The Salvation Army stands for, how The Salvation Army does its work. So, it felt like coming back home again.”

Collecting bits and pieces Linda returned “home” armed with the knowledge she’d gleaned from her previous experience at The Salvation Army, along with the Rescue Mission and Onondaga County. Being a part of the nonprofit sector for decades, she’s seen colleagues transition to executive director positions themselves, and had the opportunity to work for influential leaders, like Clarence Jordan, Bobbie Schofield and Ann Rooney, she said. “You sort of take bits and pieces,” she said, explaining that as you find yourself as a leader, you discover what’s important to you.

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The Holiday Edition


For Linda, one of those “bits and pieces” is making a conscious effort to bring those you’re trying to help into the conversation and process, by listening to their perspectives and experiences. Working as the project director of ON CARE helped instill this lesson. After her time at the Rescue Mission and The Salvation Army, Linda transitioned to working for Onondaga County, first with ON CARE, and then eventually as deputy commissioner for the department of children and family services. ON CARE, a grant-funded program, aimed to bring together children’s services in Onondaga County. As project director, Linda had the opportunity to help “shape the system of how things could be delivered better to kids and families,” she explained. “[In receiving that grant,] part of what you commit to is giving families and youth a voice at the table — a voice in governance, a voice in assessing how the system works and how it doesn’t,” Linda said. Listening to those voices of people who were actually living the reality of those experiences and navigating the system gave Linda an appreciation of their perspectives. “At the end of the day, their lived experience probably trumps anything that we know from a book or otherwise,” she said.

Linda’s hiatus from The Salvation Army had been eight years long. She was excited for a homecoming, but knew it was important to remember that people change and evolve, she told the team. For the first few months, Linda reacquainted herself with the organization, spending days meeting with staff, board members and community supporters to get feedback on The Salvation Army’s functions. She was happy to find that while the organization had grown — a number of new programs aimed at helping everyone from children to seniors had been created — the core of The Salvation Army hadn’t changed. “The Army is always about hope. The Army is always about compassionate service to people. It’s always about doing whatever it takes,” she said. “And so, that didn’t change. And that’s part of what pulled me back.” Linda was welcomed back to a familiar team that valued those core components as well. Two department heads have been with the organization for 20 years. Another two have been with The Salvation Army for 10 years. There are a number of long-time board members who have consistently dedicated their time to the cause, too, Linda said.

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Photography by Alice G. Patterson

Diving back in

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COVER STORY Linda Lopez Leading the Army of Good continued from page 29 Returning to the organization was like going to a new school and already having some friends, she said. “And I went to a lot of new schools, so I know how that feels,” Linda added with a laugh. This first year back was a busy one, she reflected. Starting on Nov. 1, 2016, meant jumping right into the Christmas season. And that meant everything from the red kettle fundraising campaign to the Christmas Bureau to managing holiday volunteers, on top of the 44 programs The Salvation Army runs. “It was a wild start,” Linda said. Working with a staff equally committed to The Salvation Army’s role in the community made stepping into the leadership position an easy transition, she said. “We’re willing to tackle really hard stuff,” Linda said. “We don’t shy away from populations or problems that might feel daunting in many ways. We run toward those.”

Fighting poverty A top priority of The Salvation Army, shared by many other organizations in Central New York, is the effort to reduce poverty in our region. According to a recent Census Bureau report, Syracuse’s 2016 poverty rate was the 13th worst in the country, having dropped from 29th worst a year prior. “That’s something we’re serious about tackling,” Linda said. “So, some of that is figuring out, what are the barriers? What are the systemic barriers? It’s not just an individual problem. There are systemic barriers that keep people in poverty.” Along with being part of Greater Syracuse H.O.P.E., an initiative that aims to bring together the community in hopes of making a plan for positive change, The Salvation Army’s existing programs fight those systemic barriers every day. While the organization is there to meet crisis needs, like lack of food, clothing and shelter, a main goal is to help people “build capacity and be able to move forward and really be able to thrive,” Linda said. That’s addressed on every level, from childcare to programs aimed at keeping seniors healthy and independent, she added. Each year, The Salvation Army helps more than 40,000 people. “There’s lots of touch points that can make a difference,” Linda said.

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On the individual level, Linda and The Salvation Army staff participate in those initiatives, too, from subcommittees to advisory groups to steering committees, she said. But it really doesn’t come down to which individuals or organizations receive the credit, Linda stressed. “It’s, ‘Can we come together and make these things happen and make them change?’” she said.

Keeping it all in perspective As grateful as Linda is for her role in The Salvation Army, she’s equally grateful to be a mother of four, she said. Like any woman attempting the work/life balancing act, she knows that keeping everything in healthy perspective is crucial. “Work is work and life is life. Life trumps work,” Linda tells her staff. “As important as the work that we do here is, I don’t ever want to sacrifice my family to do this work. And I don’t think I have to.” For many of The Salvation Army staff — Linda included — life and work overlap. Over the years, her children, now ages 29, 21, 10 and 9, have joined her as volunteers at the organization’s events. She has piles and piles of photos of her family in their Salvation Army shirts and sweatshirts, happily ringing bells for the cause. “I don’t think kids are ever too young to start to learn that it’s important to share what we have with people who might not quite have as much,” Linda said. SWM

The Holiday Edition


Photography by Alice G. Patterson

I love what The Salvation Army does. I love what The Salvation Army stands for, how The Salvation Army does its work.” —Linda Lopez, executive director for community services at The Salvation Army, Syracuse Area Services

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For a good cause Give to Others

One Business’ Trash, A Nonprofit Organization’s Treasure By Amy Caputo

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Photography by Amy Davis

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ave you ever had an idea you never imagined would turn into a reality? For myself and my family, one simple idea of giving snowballed into a positive experience and has had a strong impact on our community. The concept of the Give To Others website began in 2001 on a morning walk. My husband and I noticed a gently-used child’s bicycle at the curb. We agreed this bike could make another child happy, and it would be a shame to see it thrown away. We had an idea that evolved into the Give To Others concept: utilize the Internet to connect individuals and businesses who wish to give with organizations in need. Businesses often donate surplus inventory. Items are then posted on the website’s “Donated Items List,” an inventory available to all registered charities, where they can accept needed items for their clients or organization. Then, an accepting organization can contact the donor directly to make arrangements for a convenient pick-up time and provide the donor with a tax receipt. I know firsthand that life gets busy and we often have little free time in our day. I tried to make the giving process fast, efficient and hassle-free. The website also offers local organizations the chance to post their “Charities Needs List” to be shared with the community. If you haven’t seen this list before, I encourage you to check it out. It’s always available to review and fulfill at any time on our homepage, GiveToOthers.com. Just recently, I witnessed a heartwarming situation in which a local family had donated an outdoor play set worth more than $2,000. While their children had outgrown it, the set still had many years of use left. The item was posted and accepted the very next day by the Hamilton Street Boys and Girls Club of Syracuse. The children who received the play set were overjoyed to have the new addition in the yard. Before the play set was installed, the children had to walk more than a mile to the nearest park. Having the new set on the premises made the children not only safe, but happy! It’s stories like this that bring me pride and joy in the Give To Others website. Today, Give To Others has more than 250 nonprofit organizations enrolled in Central New York and is expanding to Chicago, Ill., and Rochester in the near future. A wide variety of nonprofit sectors are represented, including: those that help

the elderly, disabled and veterans; food pantries; clothing closets; animal shelters; foster care organizations; after-school programs; social services programs; early intervention programs; substance abuse centers; group homes; various health centers; refugee assistance programs; child advocacy programs and more. The complete list of registered charities can be found on the website. I welcome any local 501c3 nonprofit organization to enroll, free of charge, on the Give To Others home page, GiveToOthers.com. Sometimes people ask me why my husband and I continue to operate the Give To Others site when we don’t benefit from it financially. That’s an easy question to answer. I’d like to think if I were in need, my community would be there for me. This website has given so many people and businesses the opportunity to help others and experience the joy of giving. It goes back to what my parents taught me: Treat others the way you yourself would like to be treated. I feel I’ve been blessed with time, talent and resources to make this community service a possibility, and believe it’s my moral responsibility to give back. Through this journey, I’ve learned there is truly nothing more rewarding than knowing you’ve helped another person in some small way. SWM To get involved and donate, visit GiveToOthers.com.

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fitness Shopping for Your Runner

Gearing Up for the New Year By Emily Kulkus

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ave a runner in your life? Want to make their holiday? If you could fit down-hill routes and sunny days into a stocking, you would, but that’s a tall order. This holiday season, impress the runner, walker or athlete in your life with some fantastic gear. High-quality shoes, apparel and accessories can make all the difference between an OK run and a great one. Here are some fun ideas for what the athlete in your life would love to receive this holiday season.

and fast on her run. She’s also wearing a Fleet Feet Sports exclusive shoe, the Karhu Synchron ($160). And don’t forget the accessories! She’s prepared for the elements with Saucony run mittens ($40); a Sauce insulator headband ($25); and purple Goodr sunglasses ($25), which are lightweight, polarized and won’t slide off during the run.

Technology

Runners love technology! It keeps them focused on the finish line and can track their training, progress and PRs. The Garmin Vivoactive 3 ($300) is a watch for men and women that easily transitions from the track to the bike to the office. It has built-in GPS, 15 pre-loaded sports apps and a contactless payment feature.

Dress for success

Many Central New York runners and walkers brave the elements to enjoy the fresh air year-round. The best way to be prepared is to layer up and be ready for anything! Laura is wearing a a plum Adidas Climacool shirt ($55); a white Brooks vest ($110) with zippered pockets to hold her keys, phone or nutrition; and Nike Epic Run tights ($80) to keep her warm 34

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Stocking stuffers

Fill your athlete’s stocking with goodies that are sure to make them smile and feel good well into the new year. Everybody needs a great water bottle – kids included (featured: $13 to $33). Stock up your athlete’s emergency kit with RockTape ($20) and Rock Sauce ($15) for those post-workout aches and pains; give shoelaces an upgrade with Lock Laces ($8); and everyone will love a pair of Goodr Sunglasses ($25), which come in a huge range of colors and a cute gift box for easy wrapping!

These socks aren’t the tube socks you found under the tree as a kid. Try all non-cotton socks ($10 to $17 per pair) that wick away moisture and won’t slide, slip or cause blisters in running or walking shoes, cleats, boots or casual shoes.

Keep your athlete’s muscles long, limber and feeling good year-round with the Roll Recovery ($120) massage tool. It’s like having your own personal masseuse wherever you need it. Or pick up a massage product that focuses on the feet, back, arms or other parts of the body ($10 to $120).

Headphones

Safety

Socks

Massage

Help keep your runner safe with a light or a reflective product. There’s a huge range of safety products for runners, walkers, children and pets available. Featured items include the Nathan Runner’s Headlamp ($120); the Amphipod reflective vest ($32); or the Nathan Runner’s Flashlight ($45), which features a strap for easy carrying.

Know a runner or walker who loves to listen to music during their workout? Consider a pair of AfterShokz ($99), wireless bone conduction headphones that sit outside of the ear, allowing you to hear the music and your environment at the same time. They’re safe and fun! Emily Kulkus is the marketing coordinator for Fleet Feet Sports, Syracuse. You can find all these products at local Fleet Feet stores, located at 5800 Bridge St. in East Syracuse and 4136 State Route 31 in Clay. For more information, visit fleetfeetsyracuse.com. The Holiday Edition


Alice Patterson Full Page ad

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Inspire Ashley Trahan

ashley trahan

Photography by Alexis Emm

PAST JOSEPH'S HOUSE FOR WOMEN RESIDENT

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The Holiday Edition


Creating a Healthy Exodus By Samantha Leader

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hen meeting Ashley Trahan for the first time, you would with other residents, a life skills class at 7 p.m. and then an 8 p.m. bedtime. likely not realize she’s a survivor of multiple abusive “There are many pros and cons to the rules,” Ashley said. relationships and had long experienced anxiety and “And for the first two weeks, I was secluded from everyone. I was depression. She now has a full- time job and custody of her sister’s very shy and didn’t want to talk to people.” child, along with her own three children. That eventually faded, as she began the process aimed at helping She has some simple advice for anyone struggling through a mothers overcome difficult emotions and learn to do things like situation similar to what she overcame. “Just keep trucking. It is only temporary,” Ashley said. “Keep your cook, make bottles and budget money. head up and make sure people who love you are close. Don’t give “The biggest thing to remember in this program is to let your up or it will be your biggest mistake.” pride go,” Ashley said. When Ashley was 10 years old, her stepfather — a man with When she first joined the program at Joseph’s House for Women, alcohol and drug addiction problems — Ashley never saw herself enjoying life in left the family. Ashley was left with a place with so many people and rules. a blurred perception of a healthy After a year, though, she couldn’t see relationship. At 17, she moved out herself leaving. Keep your head up and of her family’s home to live on her “You form bonds and lifelong make sure people who love own, starting on a journey marked friendships,” she said. by unhealthy relationships. Ashley moved out of the house you are close. Don’t give “I was attracted to the same kind of men in March 2017, after three months up or it will be your biggest with alcohol, heroin and drug addictions,” of searching for an apartment. Joseph’s House for Women’s Exodus Ashley said. mistake.” — Ashley Trahan, Program was a great help. The program Eventually, a woman who worked past Joseph’s House for with Ashley at JGB Enterprises told her aims to help mothers through the about Joseph’s House for Women, transition of being a part of the program Women resident an organization that provides a safe home to moving back out on their own. and family environment for homeless “They give you a counselor who works mothers and children. with you to make sure you’re OK after The man she was dating at the time was aggressive toward moving, and helps you find the apartment,”Ashley explained. her son. With the help of the Exodus Program, Ashley found her “I called [Joseph’s House for Women founder] Kitty Spinelli, own apartment. She now works full time as a customer service who called me back a minute later, and talked to me about the representative, making enough money to support herself and her next step to get into the program,” she said. children, with benefits and paid time off. If she ever finds herself The process for entering the program starts with an interview. in a bind, Ashley knows she can count on the Exodus Program for Ashley met with the trained staff to discuss options upon backup in the form of diapers, clothing, childcare and more. admission. The staff’s goal is to match each mother with her Finding her footing independently hasn’t been easy, but she’s interests, abilities and need for employment. confident she’s on the right path. She credits the program for When she entered the program, Ashley was pregnant with help in that direction. her third child. To keep space between her family and the past “Support from Joseph’s House has helped the transition be unhealthy relationships, she didn’t tell anyone about her plans to smooth,” Ashley said. SWM move and changed her phone number. Joseph’s House for Women was a completely new world for Do you want to help Joseph’s House for Women? Find a list of needed items Ashley, who’d been on her own since age 17. On weekdays, and more information at jhfw.org. there was a 6 p.m. curfew, followed by a communal dinner

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INspire Annie Taylor

ANNiE TAYLOR

Photography by Alice G. Patterson

FOUNDER OF ANNIE TAYLOR DESIGN

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The Holiday Edition


Designing Your Passion By Lorna Oppedisano

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hen Annie Taylor planned her wedding, Pinterest-inspired, do-it-yourself festivities were not the norm. But Annie wanted her own creative, unique wedding invitations. So, returning home every evening from her job at Stonewall Kitchen’s in-house design department, she’d set up shop and get to work. “I stayed up late every night doing them on my dining room table,” Annie said. “And I just loved it.” Many of her friends were getting engaged around the same time. They loved Annie’s handiwork and asked her to make stationery for their weddings, too. Before long, she and her husband agreed it was time for her to take the leap, leave her job and make a go as a small business owner. And with that, Annie Taylor Design was born. Annie began by primarily creating wedding stationery, at “the dawning of the Pintestet era, when you wanted to make your wedding a lot more personal, and put your own touch on it,” she remembered. Annie and her husband were starting their family, and the new business was the perfect fit that enabled her to work from home and be with her children. She worked diligently for a few years after founding the business in 2005, but eventually had to put it on hold as her children got older. After living in Maine for about 10 years, the couple moved back to Syracuse. They had the youngest of their three children, and Annie began to feel “the itch” to create again. When her sisterin-law asked Annie to design wedding invitations, Annie jumped at the opportunity. A friend helped Annie redesign her website, and Annie Taylor Design was back. In her hometown, surrounded by support of family and friends, she’d found the perfect place to reinvigorate her business. “Moving back here, I had a whole new appreciation for Syracuse,” she said. “For me, I just needed to leave for a little while, to come back and appreciate what a great little city this is, and [that it is] such a great place to raise a family.” Being a mother has inspired Annie and helped her expand the business, too. In 2015, she decided to take her design concepts in a new direction, shifting away from weddings and toward helping mothers and busy women make the most of their days. Now, she designs everything from specialized to-do lists for on-the-go women to daily checklists for their children.

Annie’s business decisions have been guided by changes in her own life. Like any small business owner, she makes mistakes, but that’s OK, she said. Annie Taylor Design’s growth has been steady, a sustainable fit for the busy mother of three. Annie most enjoys the creative side of her business, she said. She’s not a salesperson or businessperson at heart, so the support of other local female entrepreneurs has been crucial to her success. “[They] keep me accountable, and can totally relate to the craziness,” she said, adding that her business coach, Jen Liddy of Jen Liddy Coaching & Development, has been “a life and business saver.” Being a small business owner has forced Annie, a self-proclaimed introvert, to venture out of her comfort zone. Since she doesn’t have a brick-and-mortar shop of her own, she connects with other local business owners, suggesting they carry Annie Taylor Design products in their shops. She’s seen success so far, selling her stationery at a number of local stores, and plans to add to the list next year. “I love the trend that these locally-owned businesses are supporting other locally-owned businesses,” she said. For any small business owners struggling with growth, Annie stressed the importance of continually finding your own niche. For her, it began with weddings. Now, it’s creating for busy women and mothers. “Keep carving out what you’re passionate about,” she explained, “because you won’t have any longevity if you’re doing something that doesn’t give you passion.” SWM Find Annie Taylor Design products online at annietaylordesign.com, and at the following local shops: • Natur-Tyme, DeWitt • Skaneateles 300, Skaneateles • Paola Kay, Fayetteville • Adagio, Syracuse • Hair Habitat, Syracuse • Indie Kids, Syracuse Connect with Annie at her pop-up show on December 2 at Pottery Barn in Destiny USA. Check online for details about Annie Taylor Design’s upcoming open house. Thanks to Adagio for Annie’s hairstyling, and A-list Artistry for Annie’s makeup.

Keep carving out what you're passionate about, because you won't have any longevity if you’re doing something that doesn't give you passion.” — Annie Taylor, founder of Annie Taylor Design December 2017

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INSPIRE Sheila Austin

Sheila austin

Photography by Mary Grace Johnson

ROAD TO EMMAUS MINISTRY OF SYRACUSE DIRECTOR

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The Holiday Edition


Finding Her Road to Ministry By Jasmine Gomez

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“There was something very special about the spirit that was in n Syracuse’s South Side stands an outreach center where there that helped me and our volunteers to recognize that this was those in need can find a hot meal, toiletries or a pair of boots a ministry,” Sheila said. “Not just making some food and bringing during the winter. It’s more than simply a soup kitchen. it to somebody, [but] that it had more of a spiritual component to The St. Marianne Cope Center for Outreach opened in May 2017 it, and that’s where we started to grow from.” on South Salina Street after being housed at St. James Church for Now, years later, those fears Sheila first had are gone. She spends several years. It not only houses a commercial kitchen and dining many hours at the center, sometimes alone, welcoming homeless space, but also a washer, dryer and shower for those who need it. men and women who need to shower, eat or wash clothes. For those looking for somebody to just talk to, they’ll also find Her faith and the selflessness of the volunteers who serve with a friendly face: Sheila Austin, the director of the Road to Emmaus her keep her going, she said. Ministry of Syracuse. Like everyone who helps with outreach “I don’t have the fear that I had growing up as a younger person,” there, Sheila’s position is volunteer-based, but that doesn’t limit she said. “I think it’s because I’ve allowed myself to be familiar with the number of hours she spends at the center helping some of the people in general, and not just people that I’m comfortable [with].” South Side’s most vulnerable residents, even if it’s the last thing Sheila’s formed relationships with the many faces that frequent she ever saw herself doing. the center. The center is open for “I was fearful of the South Side, service at least four times a week, of people who were different, and I whether it’s for breakfast on Tuesday tended to avoid all those situations,” There was something very and Thursday mornings, or laundry Sheila said, “but this ministry forced special about the spirit that and showers on Wednesdays. me into that environment and, as a People who come in are like children result of it, what I was most fearful of, was in [the St. Marianne Cope to her, Sheila said. Before dedicating it changed.” Center] that helped me and most of her time to the ministry, Sheila’s involvement with the Road Sheila was a nurse at St. Joseph’s to Emmaus Ministry started about nine our volunteers to recognize Hospital, working in the intensive years ago, when she was a parishioner at that this was a ministry.” — care unit and operating room. St. James. She was starting to reconnect There, she met a her future husband, with her faith and Father John Manno Sheila Austin, Road to Emmaus a doctor. The two never had children, was newly assigned to the church. Ministry of Syracuse Director but now she said she has more than He had a vision of engaging the parish 100 kids. in active outreach, Sheila said, which “I feel that maternal and nurturing meant meeting those in need where sort of thing and, honestly, I think they were. they look at me that way, as well,” she said. “I feel comforted by Before Father Manno’s arrival, the church’s outreach involved them. My heart is just full of love and compassion for all of them making sandwiches for a men’s shelter, a place the volunteers as if they were my own.” never actually visited. Sheila didn’t even know where the shelter In the process of helping those who are most vulnerable, was located, she said. Father Manno suggested she start there. Sheila aims to be an example for those who have the same fears “He presented this challenge to us as people of faith and she once had. To an extent, she feels the responsibility to help I remember saying, ‘No,’” Sheila said. “I was in a cold sweat. people open themselves up to “people who have addictions, I was scared to death, but I also knew that I was being stirred people who have psychiatric issues, the homeless people [and] inside, too.” people who just look different,” she said. After initially resisting, Sheila decided to take on the challenge. “If I could do it, anybody can,” Sheila said. “It’s just a matter She researched the location of the men’s shelter, only to find it of leading them by the hand and giving them opportunities to was in the area of town she typically avoided — the South Side. come here, witness, volunteer and help break the ice for that For about a month, she would drive her car closer and closer experience for them, because it can be life-changing.” SWM to the shelter and never actually make it there, until one day, with pans of baked ziti and other volunteers, she finally did. For more information on Road to Emmaus Ministry of Syracuse, For Sheila, that first experience was illuminating, she said. visit emmausministry.org. She remembered a man thanking her for the food, and asking her if the place was too distasteful for her to want to come back. She immediately responded she would return.

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The Holiday Edition


Special Feature A Year in Review

A Year in Review from my Rearview Mirror By Kate D. Mahoney

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am old-school, often one with my car stereo, a blend of trepidation and optimism when I hit the road to share my story and hear the stories of others. Whether it’s cranking up Queen in the middle of a rock block or harnessing my inner Whitney Houston during an evening call-in show, music has motivated, comforted and inspired me — and kept me awake — this first year of my book tour and business. My social media hashtags are like the labels I used to write on my old mix tapes. #nosleeptillbooktour, for example, is my nod to the Beastie Boys. #gotmiracle, not song specific,is my branding, meant to be every bit empowering as it is irreverent. Eleven months into my new chapter as author/patient/caregiver/ ambassador/storyteller/actorvist/performer/ speaker, I added #Ivebeeneverywhere. Thank you, Johnny Cash. Road trip 2017 brought me around Central New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, Pennsylvania, Maryland,

December 2017

D.C., Virginia, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Hawaii. All across the country, unique individuals welcomed me into their communities: Barnes & Noble staff and other booksellers; wellness coaches; faith leaders; book club members; bakers and chocolate makers; hospital CEOs and school nurses; former classmates and teachers; media and marketing specialists; journalists, radio and television hosts; publishers and editors (thank you, Lorna!). It’s true what the Girl Scouts sang; there is value is making new friends and keeping the old. Thanks to each of you who have been a song on the soundtrack of my life. As this issue goes to press, another tune begins to play. Happy Holidays! SWM Kate D. Mahoney is the author of “The Misfit Miracle Girl: Candid Reflections.” Join her from 1 to 4 p.m. on Dec. 17 at Barnes & Noble DeWitt. “The Misfit Miracle Girl: Candid Reflections” is available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Connect with Kate at MahoneyKateD@gmail.com.

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UPCOMING SWM Events Friday, Dec. 1, through Sunday, Dec. 10 Festival of Trees When: Various events throughout festival. What: Includes First Friday on Dec. 1; Teddy Bear Tea on Dec. 3; Holiday Luncheon Fashion Show on Dec. 5; Engaging Neighbors on Dec. 7; Santa Saturday on Dec. 9. Check online for more details. Cost: Members, $5; nonmembers, $8. Where: Everson Museum of Art, 401 Harrison St., Syracuse. Info: everson.org/connect/events/festival-trees.

Wednesday, Dec. 6 2017 Real Heroes Breakfast When: 7:30 to 9 a.m. What: Honors Central New Yorkers who have performed heroic acts. Proceeds benefit American Red Cross of CNY. Cost: Check online for details. Where: Oncenter, 800 S. State St., Syracuse. Info: Development Specialist Amy North, 315-234-2225 or amy.north2@redcross.org; cnybj.com/bizeventz.

Saturday, Dec. 2 Craft Brewers Festival When: VIP admission, 4 p.m.; general admission, 5 p.m. What: Includes souvenir tasting glass, unlimited 3-ounce beer samples, food samples and more. Cost: Advanced general admission, $45; general admission, $55; advanced VIP ticket, $65; VIP ticket, $75; designated driver, $20. Where: Landmark Theatre, 362 S. Salina St., Syracuse. Info: landmarktheatre.org/events/calendar.

Thursday, Dec. 7 WBOC Holiday Auction & Party When: 5:30 p.m. What: Presented by gold sponsor, Cathy J. Berry MD and Associates. Evening includes music by Jess Novak and Mark Nanni, raffle items donated by local businesses, photo booth by Alice G. Patterson Photography, dinner, drinks and more. Open to the public. Cost: $45. Where: Genesee Grande Hotel, 1060 E. Genesee St., Syracuse. Info: wboconnection.org/events.

Saturday, Dec. 2, & Sunday, Dec. 3 The Nutcracker When: 1 and 6 p.m. Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. What: Presented by Syracuse City Ballet. Cost: $20 to $75. Where: Crouse Hinds Theater, 411 Montgomery St., Syracuse. Info: syracusecityballet.com. Saturdays & Sundays, Dec. 2, 3, 9, 10, 16 & 17 Breakfast with Santa When: 9 and 11 a.m. What: Includes photo opportunities, holiday crafts and letter writing. Cost: Members, $14; nonmembers, $18. Where: Rosamond Gifford Zoo, 1 Conservation Place, Syracuse. Info: rosamondgiffordzoo.org/upcoming-events. Tuesday, Dec. 5 Rudolph the Red-Hosed Reindeer: The Musical When: 6:30 p.m. What: Adaptation of traditional holiday film. Cost: $20 to $55. Where: Landmark Theatre, 362 S. Salina St., Syracuse. Info: landmarktheatre.org. Wednesday, Dec. 6 1 Million Cups When: 9 to 10 a.m. What: Presentations by local early-stage startup companies aim to draw feedback from peers, mentors, educators and advisors. Open to the public. Cost: Free admission. Where: Syracuse CoWorks, 201 E. Jefferson St., Syracuse. Info: 1millioncups.com/syracuse. Wednesday, Dec. 6 Justice For All When: 7:45 to 8:45 a.m. What: Third annual Hiscock Legal Aid Society fundraiser event. Cost: Free admission. Where: Drumlins, 800 Nottingham Road, Syracuse. Info: RSVP online, whoozin.com/TT4-67A-QVUH; email RSVP, jtorreano@hlawlaw.org; hlalaw.org. 48

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Saturday, Dec. 9 Holidays with the Animals When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. What: Zoo-goers watch animals open presents. Cost: Free for members and with admission. Where: Rosamond Gifford Zoo, 1 Conservation Place, Syracuse. Info: rosamondgiffordzoo.org. Saturday, Dec. 9 Christmas Cookie Café When: 9:30 a.m. to noon. What: Create custom cookie trays from the dozens of homemade varieties. Bring your own tray, or purchase one. Cost: Cookies are $10 per pound. Where: Columbian Presbyterian Church, corner of Route 11 and Route 20, LaFayette. Info: 315-677-3293; cpresbyt@twcny.rr.com. Saturday, Dec. 9 Dasher’s Magical Gift When: 11 a.m. What: 38-year tradition presented by CNY Arts. Cost: $10. Where: Crouse Hinds Theater, 411 Montgomery St., Syracuse. Info: dashersmagicalgift.org; 315-435-2155. Saturday, Dec. 9 Jingle Paws 5K Run, Walk and Donation Drive When: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. What: Portion of proceeds from run/walk benefit animal advocacy initiatives in CNY. Sponsored by Barket’s Pet Supply Co. Cost: $40, includes t-shirt. Where: Old Historic Erie Canal, 5657 Butternut Drive, E. Syracuse. Info: barkerspetsupplyco.net. Tuesday, Dec. 12 2017 Family Business Awards When: 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. What: Recognizes family businesses in Central New York. Cost: $45. Where: Genesee Grande Hotel, 1060 E. Genesee St., Syracuse. Info: mnesher@cnybj.com, 315-579-3925 or cnybj.com/2017-family-business-awards.

The Holiday Edition


Tuesday, Dec. 12

What: Theatre Du Jour production directed by Sherri Metz. Cost: $60. Where: Barnes Hiscock Mansion, 930 James St., Syracuse. Info: dujourcny.com. Friday, Dec. 15, & Saturday, Dec. 16 Symphoria Pops: Holiday Wonder What: Performance includes dancers, chorus members and vocalist Julia Goodwin. Cost: $38 to $81. Where: Crouse Hinds Theater, 411 Montgomery St., Syracuse. Info: experiencesymphoria.org. Saturday, Dec. 16, & Sunday, Dec. 17 Holidays in the City When: Activities throughout weekend.

Saturday, Dec. 16, Sunday, Dec. 17, Thursday, Dec. 21, & Friday, Dec. 22 7:15 p.m. Thursday and Friday. What: Presented by Breadcrumbs Productions. Written by Marisa Valent with excerpts from Charles Dickens and Christina Rosetti. Cost: $25. Where: Barnes Hiscock Mansion, 930 James St., Syracuse. Info: breadcrumbsproductions.com. Sunday, Dec. 17 Great Russian Nutcracker When: 2 and 6 p.m. What: Presented by Moscow Ballet. Cost: $28 to $132. Where: Crouse Hinds Theater, 411 Montgomery St., Syracuse. Info: nutcracker.com.

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carolers, Holiday Window Walk, free movie at the Landmark Theatre, ice skating, Erie Canal Museum Gingerbread Exhibit, Onondaga Historical Association’s Holiday Exhibit and more. Cost: Free admission. Where: Downtown Syracuse. Info: holidaysinsyr.com.

Sunday, Dec. 31 Noon Year’s Eve When: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. What: Includes entertainment, dance party, countdown at noon and more. Cost: Free for members and with admission. Where: Rosamond Gifford Zoo, 1 Conservation Place, Syracuse. Info: rosamondgiffordzoo.org. Sunday, Dec. 31 New Year’s Eve at the Marriott When: 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. open bar, buffet dinner, late night snack and champagne toast. Includes live music, games, photo booth, horse and carriage rides and more. Cost: $189. Where: Marriott Syracuse Downtown, 100 E. Onondaga St., Syracuse. Info: marriott.com. December 2017

SHOW YOU HAVE GREAT TASTE

EDIBLE GIFTS

Syracuse Parent Magazine is your local resource for information, tips, recipes, parenting trends and more when it comes to families in Central New York! Find our more at syracuseparent.net or call (315) 434-8889. SYRACUSEWOMANMAG.COM

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movers AND Shakers

LDACNY rebrands As LAUNCH LAUNCH, formerly known as the Learning Disabilities Association of Central New York (LDACNY), recently announced the launch of its new brand identity, with the introduction of a new logo, website and mission statement. LAUNCH’s mission statement is: “LAUNCH partners with children and adults to provide individualized services that foster learning, independence and growth.” The rebrand came as part of a two-year capacity-building program funded by the Gifford Foundation. During this process, LDACNY identified that its name and mission statement did not fully encompass the work it does for the Central New York community. LAUNCH aims to communicate with the community that it focuses on individual’s abilities, rather than disabilities. LAUNCH invites you to visit its beautiful new website at www.launchcny.org. If you have any questions, contact Executive Director, Paulette Purdy, at 315-870-9441 or ppurdy@launchcny.org.

New program prepares children for kindergarten As a result of Too Small to Fail’s “Talking is Teaching: Talk, Read, Sing” campaign, families in Onondaga County now have access to more resources aimed to help children with language acquisition, reading and school readiness through free in-home educational visits. The new Talking is Teaching Home Visiting Strategy is a part of the Early Childhood Alliance (ECA) of Onondaga’s larger “Talking is Teaching: Talk, Read, Sing” campaign. To develop strategy and train home visitors, the ECA collaborated with existing home-visiting programs in Onondaga County, including the Onondaga County Health Department’s “Healthy Families” program, Catholic Charities of Onondaga County, MANOS, PEACE Inc.’s Early Head Start program and the Salvation Army’s Early Head Start program. Thirty home visitors are trained in the “Talking is Teaching: Talk, Read, Sing” campaign messaging and materials, and additional home visitor trainings are planned for January. All funding to support the Home Visiting Strategy has been provided by the ECA Business Council, which agreed to sponsor the strategy at its first meeting in April 2017. To learn more about the initiative, all parents in Onondaga County are encouraged to visit, like and share the “Talk, Read, Sing Onondaga” Facebook page. For more information on the national campaign, including parent-friendly resources, tips and activities, parents can visit talkingisteaching.org.

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St. Joseph's awarded for neonatal intensive care patient experience

St. Joseph’s Health Hospital has been named a 2017 Guardian of Excellence Award winner for neonatal intensive care patient experience by Press Ganey. The award recognizes top-performing health care organizations that have consistently achieved the 95th percentile or above in their performance. Nationally, six hospitals received the award (including St. Joseph’s), out of 187 hospitals surveyed across the country. St. Joseph’s is the only hospital in the state to receive the award, and only hospital in Central New York to receive any Guardian of Excellence award from Press Ganey this year. Representatives from St. Joseph’s Health attended the Press Ganey Guardian of Excellence Award ceremony in November. For more information about St. Joseph’s NICU, visit sjhsyr.org/neonatalintensive-care-unit. Submitted information has been edited for length and clarity.

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The Holiday Edition

Syracuse Woman Magazine December 2017  
Syracuse Woman Magazine December 2017  

The Holiday Edition

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