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Season's Recipes

Childhood Trauma HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH tallahassee woman | 1 | october • november 2019

If you’re ever diagnosed with cancer, you’ll want access to cutting-edge treatments.

Like the international clinical trials we offer.

How do you fight cancer? You fight it right here at home. A clinical trials program is an essential part of a true cancer center. TMH offers an international network of clinical trials that provide the opportunity for patients to receive new and cutting edge treatments with the benefit of finding better ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer. Paving the way for progress, clinical trials are how we advance healthcare and ultimately, save more lives.

TMH.ORG/Cancer tallahassee woman | 2 | october • november 2019

tallahassee woman | 3 | october • november 2019




Contents 44

52. Wellness

10. Letter from Publisher

Women to Watch: Promotions, awards and other notable achievements of local women. By Life’s Ups and Downs First Jobs: Tallahassee Women Share

12. Trends

46. Style

56. Food

Fall Fashion: Kiss & Makeup She Say Social: Fall Season Favs Books: Inspiring Reads Home: Hurricane Preparedness Shopping: Faves and Raves

Home Sweet Home: FSU Presidents Home

48. Feature Travel Madame Xhales in Marion, North Carolina

Mental Health Matters: Dance To A New Song: The Power of Mental Messages Healthy Living: Self Care in 5 Minutes

The Dish: Season's Eatings

58. Family Life: Understanding Childhood Trauma

24. Living Local

WE Elevate: Painting From Her Heart Around Town: Let Your Dreams Run Wild Sweet Home Tallahassee: Perservering with Purpose Community: Hispanic Heritage Month Haute Happenings: Highlights of Local Events


34. On the Cover

Chef Shac (Shacafrica) Simmons: Culinary Queen Dishes up He(art) and Soul

38. Business

Money Talk: Is it Multi-Tasking or Is it a Distraction?

34. about the cover woman: Chef Shac (Shacafrica) Simmons: Culinary Queen By Heather Thomas photography: Kira Derryberry | makeup: Mikaya Warren-Mikaya Warren Enterprises | clothing and accessories: Fashion Consultant- Rosemarie Henderson Designer/Seamstress- Ethel Wooten- Ethel's Dress Making Jewelry- Robert's at Betton Place Shoes- Dina Burns- Divine Consign hair: Angelica Baker- AngeDoesHair

tallahassee woman | 4 | october • november 2019


(850)877-2126 TLHPLASTICSURGERY.COM tallahassee woman | 5 | october • november 2019




October/November 2019 • Volume 14 • Issue 5









INTERNS Jennifer Hopkins

DIRECTOR OF LUXURY TRAVEL Regina Lynch Hudson ADVERTISING For information on advertising, visit, call (850) 893-9624, or e-mail

TALLAHASSEE WOMAN is a publication of Mitcham Media Group LLC Post Office Box 16616 | Tallahassee, FL 32317-3401 Phone (850) 893-9624 | Fax (850) 254­-7038 | Tallahassee Woman is published six times per year and is distributed on a complimentary basis throughout Tallahassee and the surrounding communities.

TALWOMAN.COM The information in this publication is presented in good faith. The publisher does not guarantee accuracy or assume responsibility for errors or omissions. Copyright © 2019 Mitcham Media Group LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction, in part or in whole, without expressed written consent of the Publisher is prohibited.

tallahassee woman | 6 | october • november 2019




Best Rate. First Time.

(Left to right) Laura Jo Hewitt (NMLS # 775253); Adrienne Granger (NMLS # 451760); Christie Powis (NMLS # 658187); April Brueckheimer Dean (NMLS# 1303118); Sheila B. Rogers (NMLS # 499896) NMLS# 393620

Tallahassee | Crawfordville | Lakeland | | (850) 907-2300 tallahassee woman | 7 | october • november 2019



DR. ASHA BREWER WRITER Dr. Asha Fields Brewer RACHEL is a speaker, author, and radio personality. SCHARLEPP She combined her love WRITER of sports medicine and Rachel Scharlepp is her faith background to co-owner of PlayBig. launch the Temple Fit She has been working with children ages 0-18 Health organization. years old with various Through her weekly radio show, health issues for over ten years. She is licensed by empowerment the state of Florida as a programs, and inspirational speaking clinical social worker, engagements, she has has earned advanced equipped communities graduate training in across the nation to live infant mental health, well. and is a Registered Play Therapist. She has specialized training in assessing and treating trauma, adoption, autism, and mental health disorders. 

KIRA DERRYBERRY PHOTOGR APHER Kira Derryberry is a Tallahassee based portrait photographer specializing in families, headshots, boudoir, and commercial photography. She books locally in Tallahassee and is available for travel worldwide. View her portfolio at kiraderryberry. com.



Jennifer Powell is a wife, a mother of two precious children, and a professional photographer for over 12 years. As a Tallahassee native, she loves the opportunity to watch her friends and clients get married and raise their children, all through the eye of her camera lens. She believes that having a passion for photography is both challenging and motivating. She is continually challenging herself to exceed her clients’ expectations and grow in her ever-changing field.

JENNY CHERRY WRITER Jenny Cherry is a native Floridian, full-time professional and single mom. She is a writer and public speaker, and holds a Bachelors degree in English Literature with a minor in Communications. 


Peggy Smith is a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach with a focus on gut health. She teaches group coaching sessions to groups and associations about how developing healthier nutrition and lifestyle habits can transform lives. You can reach Peggy at

MERIDETH BOWEN HUNTER WRITER Meredith Bowen Hunter is a communications consultant specializing in strategy, messaging and branding. She's a wife, mother, and a Gen Xer admittedly enamored with the efficiency of texting and intrigued by the power of social media. 

Heather Thomas, Writer, Leadership Tallahassee Class 36. She enjoys her family, travel, camping, long-distance running, biking and reading. Heather advocates for ways to foster communication, education, funding, and the overall enhancement of the quality of life for women and families in the community.

tallahassee woman | 8 | october • november 2019

LISA DAVIS MAKEUP ARTIST Lisa Davis is a wife, mommy of four, beauty blogger, Freelance Makeup Artist, and Owner of Image by Lisa. God made her girly and she loves sharing her tips and tricks with other women so that they can look and feel their absolute best. For more information about Lisa visit


Veteran publicist and luxury lifestyle experience-aholic, Regina Lynch-Hudson, pens MadameXhales, slated towards the vintage of woman that according to studies: enjoys more time to travel, indulges in longer trips, and selects more extravagant travel accommodations. The exacting taste of MadameXhales finds her exploring destinations, cruises, resorts, spas, and extracurricular activities.
















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Letter from

with Passion and Purpose “I see your life as already artful, just waiting and ready for you to make it art.” Toni Morrison

Dr. Michelle A. Mitcham



his month, we take a closer look at the artful lives of Women Empowered in our community that take creativity to a new level. Dynamic and diverse Tallahassee women create opportunities, new paths, creative spaces, recipes, solutions and make their dreams a reality. I am absolutely amazed at the incessant creativity produced by the wonder women in Tallahassee from myriad backgrounds and professions. It seems as though I am meeting new people all the time that are full of excitement, creativity and dreams, wanting to share their unique stories with TWM. As Walt Disney said, “Laughter is timeless, imagination has no age, dreams are forever.” With this said, TWM is thrilled to celebrate an outstanding woman, a creative culinary artist, Chopped Champion, Chef Shac, who shares her spectacular story in the pages that follow. She also took time to share some of her award-winning recipes to help with the holiday dish ideas. I love to cook and create new dishes so I am looking forward to trying out Chef Shac’s recipes!

accomplished women are creating pathways for other women to follow and encouraging them to never stop dreaming. Women CAN do anything! To continue our jubilation of women, we will be recognizing and celebrating outstanding women at the inaugural RED Gala*, November 14, 2019 from 5:30 – 10:00 pm. This celebration of women recognizes women that are Resilient, Empowered and Determined. Please join us for a reception, awards, dinner and dancing. Join the TWM team and the Marvelous Marsha Doll, our very special celebrity guest! Tickets on sale now at so get your dancing shoes ready to enjoy Tallahassee Nights Live! Nominate a R.E.D. woman today! You won’t want to miss the first ever Tallahassee Woman Magazine RED Gala. Sponsorships available. See you at the RED Gala! Empowered women empower women,

TWM is dedicated to empowering and celebrating all of the diverse women of our great capital *A portion of the net proceeds will be donated to mental health city, so for Hispanic Heritage month several Hispanic/Latina movers and shakers are featured. intervention. Representing the American dream, these highly tallahassee woman | 10 | october • november 2019


SAVE THE DATE Nominate a RED woman today and get your tickets at:

tallahassee woman | 11 | october • november 2019





easonal trends in makeup are typically set by the runway and many are eager to replicate these new techniques and styles at home. Here are some easy fall makeup trends that even the busiest woman can achieve.

MONOCHROMATIC MAKEUP. Using the same colors and tones for our eyes, cheeks, and lips, is known as monochromatic makeup. This makeup style can bring harmony to your overall look. Creating a soft, warm eye? Use similar soft, warm tones for your blush and lips.

POP OF COLOR. This fall is all about rich textures and materials, so go a little brighter or deeper than what’s in your comfort zone. Establish depth with a simple, mascara-only eye and a merlot lip. Consider even indulging in RED! Our aversions to brighter and darker lip colors are typically based on our perceptions. Try one and the compliments will pour in.

BRONZY GLOW. Bronzy glow is a personal favorite— because it’s a style that can save us time. Keep skin glowy and minimalistic with a great coverage CC Crème. CC Crème stands for color correcting and is a mix of foundation, moisturizer, and SPF. Use your bronzer as an eyeshadow, contour, and blush. Apply mascara and brows to finish. tallahassee woman | 12 | october • november 2019

LASHES. It’s true: full lashes make you look younger are in vogue for fall. The lash extension trend is thriving! No time for it? Try applying a few clusters to just the outer edges of the eye. Clusters are easier to apply than strips and can take any look from basic to WOW in seconds. THE DEWY GLOW. Skin is always in! Spend more time perfecting the complexion through the use of moisturizers, sunscreens, and a light yet full coverage foundation. Finish with a setting spray, pressing it into the face with a wedge to soften powders and seal your dewy glow.


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tallahassee woman | 13 | october • november 2019


Trends | she says social

ere in Tallahassee, we’ve finally kissed the summer season (and scorching hot sun rays) good-bye and welcomed fall with open arms. H There’s a sense of excitement that abounds as people trade their shorts and flipflops for boots, sweaters, and scarves. Even the Pumpkin Spice Latte has become the unofficial, official symbol for fall time, snagging a spot right next to pumpkins and fallen leaves.

We asked our Tallahassee Woman Magazine followers on Instagram what were their favorite or creative things to do for the fall season and here are their responses:

“Hike the Miccosukee Greenway and then grab sausage dogs and relax in the rocking chairs at Bradley’s Country Store” @kellykibbey

She Says Social “Bake pumpkin pie & prep for the hunting season ” @miss850:

“Learn new skills at the Lafayette Arts & Crafts Center and enjoy a trail hike” @cityoftlh

tallahassee woman | 14 | october • november 2019




Sharon Ewing Walker Breast Health Center Claude’s wife, Sharon, who died in 2005, inspired people throughout Tallahassee as an active volunteer and advocate for women with breast cancer. Along with friends, family members and supporters, Claude has raised $530,000 to support the Sharon Ewing Walker Breast Health Center at Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare (TMH).

How did the Sharon Ewing Walker Breast Health Center become a reality? We wanted to do something to honor Sharon, so we started a fund at the TMH Foundation. It gave me something to do. I was driven to raise money, and I would go out and talk to as many people as I could. It was part of my grieving process and healing. We’ve carried it on now all these years because we know the need is great.

How have you seen cancer treatment at TMH improve over the past 14 years? When Sharon was sick, TMH did not have a dedicated cancer treatment center. We had two young boys, and it was exhausting driving to Tampa for treatment. Now, people in

our region have a place to receive treatment in Tallahassee. We have a phenomenal radiology/oncology team and the best equipment available right here at the Tallahassee Memorial Cancer Center.

What has it been like to work through the TMH Foundation? They’ve really given me a voice in the process. I’ve met a lot of people who are of the same mind as I am and want to raise money to help move the hospital forward. Healthcare is one of our biggest issues right now, and I think it always will be, so how we deal with it as a community is important.

What advice do you have for others who want to make a difference? You’ve got to find out what motivates you. What has had an impact in your life? Is it heart disease? Is it diabetes? I think once people are impacted by something, they wake up and say, ‘This is very important, and I want to help other people.’ Figure out what your passion is and then find a way to help.

“ I think Sharon would be really proud.“ TA L L A H A S S E E M E M O R I A L H E A LT H C A R E F O U N DAT I O N

TMH-Honoring Donors-Claude Walker-Tallahassee Woman-PrintAd-2019.indd 1

8/26/19 2:52:11 PM

Inspiring Reads Trends | BOOKS


The Voice is With Them

Sometimes you open a book and are instantly hooked by the distinctive, quirky voice inside. For your fall reading list, check out these local authors who open the door to new stories, ideas, and voices that will stay with you longer after the last page is read.

Parade of Horribles By Rhett DeVane

Or, you open the door to a flower shop in Chattahoochee and the anxious tones of a gay florist crippled by hate crime. “A cell phone text alert chimed—to most people, a sound as ordinary as breathing.” Rhett DeVane’s Parade of Horribles is set in Chattahoochee, “a town with two stoplights. And a state mental hospital on the main drag that accounted for the majority of the population.”

Dalia in Bloom By Susan Koehler

Susan Koehler launched her novel, Dalia in Bloom, to a standing room only crowd at Midtown Reader, Tallahassee, on Saturday, August 17

The arresting opening of Susan Koehler’s Dalia in Bloom is like opening the door to a Depression-era Appalachian cabin and hearing the drawl of a girl in flour sack dress clutching a cornhusk doll. “Can a person just decide to give up feeling scared? For as long as I could remember, I’d had a fear of snakes and thunder and my sister Celia when she’s mad.” Dahlia is on a quest of fearlessness and sets out on a reckless path to find it, not realizing how close at hand it is.

It’s Not Like I Knew Her By Pat Spears

The next doorway opens up to Jodie Taylor returning home suitcase in hand, hesitating before cracking the door to memories “of the rank contrariness that had dwelt there…. The close room had retained its tight-fisted bearing and it was as she remembered.” That is Pat Spears gritty writing about discrimination in the 1950s and 60s in It’s Not Like I Knew Her. Crisis sets Jodie on a backward journey to reconcile her present with a childhood filled with loss, abuse, disappointment, and awareness that her desire for women will make her an outcast. tallahassee woman | 16 | october • november 2019

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tallahassee woman | 17 | october • november 2019

Trends | BOOKS

Overcoming the Underhanded: The True Story of a Life Reclaimed By Suzan E. Zan Or you stumble onto a dance floor where a young woman is about to give her heart away. “Question: What should you do if a foreign guy sweeps you out onto the dance floor, is very drunk, and says he wants to go out with you? Answer: Run, and do not give him your phone number.” That’s Suzan E. Zan’s intimate voice sweeping you along in Overcoming the Underhanded: The True Story of a Life Reclaimed. “It’s amazing what the heart can endure when in love,” she writes, “but it has breaking points.”

Acceptance of Seasons: Poems Embracing Mental Health By Katie M. Clark Perhaps the door opens to a confounding interplay of light and shadow. The voice says, “Stigma, a virus spreading across America. The antidote: Empathy, compassion. Your voice can spread the cure.” Katie M. Clark, Acceptance of Seasons: Poems Embracing Mental Health. Clark has been writing poetry and capturing light and shadows in photography since high school. In this book she reaches beyond the stigma of bipolar disorder to celebrate mental health through photography and poetry. Clark also produced the photo gracing the cover of Dahlia in Bloom. The voice in these works is strong and preserved like raw silk, not edited out by too much polish. It is that voice, secure in knowing what the speaker loves and wants, that grips readers and compels them to keep turning pages, opening doors. The quest for local authors whose writing exhibits the generous quality of genuine voice is answered in these works. The voice is strong with them. Book covers:

Susan Koehler, Dalia in Bloom, Turtle Cove Press, Tallahassee, 2019. ISBN:978-0-9859438-8-2. Cover photo by Katie M. Clark.

WE INSPIRE HOPE by positively impacting the way our community experiences serious illness or grief - one family at a time. 1723 MAHAN CENTER BOULEVARD, TALLAHASSEE, FL (850) 878-5310 | WWW.BIGBENDHOSPICE.ORG

Rhett DeVane, Parade of Horribles, Writers4Higher, Tallahassee, 2017. Silver President’s Book Awards Winner, Florida Authors and Publishers Association, Inc. ISBN: 9780692860403. Pat Spears, It’s Not Like I Knew Her, Twisted Road Publications LLC, Tallahassee. 2019ISBN 978-1-940189-12-3. Suzan E. Zan, Overcoming the Underhanded: The True Story of a Life Reclaimed, Tallahassee, 2017. ISBN-13: 9780997668421. Katie M. Clark, Acceptance of Seasons: Poems Embracing Mental Health, Tallahassee, 2019. ISBN: 9781093879292

tallahassee woman | 18 | october • november 2019

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Trends | HOME


Hurricane season is upon us. Hurricane season runs June 1st through November 30th.


uring this time it is important to know the difference between a few terms, such as the difference between a watch and a warning. A watch is issued when conditions for a hurricane are possible. A hurricane warning is when hurricane conditions are expected. A couple of other key terms to know are the difference between the eye and the eye wall. The eye which is the center of the storm provides for calm conditions. The eye wall which is the area around the eye contains some of the most severe weather of the storm.

If a hurricane is imminent it is important for residents to be prepared in advance. Here are five key hurricane preparedness tips to know and have ready in addition to your disaster supply kit.

projectiles in high winds.

Know where and how to find your evacuation zones/routes, shelter locations and determine if your property is in a flood zone if necessary know where to seek higher ground. Be sure to keep receipts of any expenses during these times for any possible reimbursements.

Know your home insurance  coverage, deductible amounts, and where to locate it when necessary. Be sure to have an inventory of your home’s content.

Be sure to bring in, anchor or  secure any loose lightweight objects inside that could become

 If you have a generator be sure to  test it before your first use, and be sure to use generators outdoors only. Clear low hanging or dead trees/ branches near your home.

tallahassee woman | 20 | october • november 2019

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tallahassee woman | 21 | october • november 2019

aF ves & Raves Trends | shopping

J.Lynn’s Consignment Boutique 2887 Kerry Forest Parkway, Unit 4 Tallahassee, FL 32312 850-765-0342 Lime N. Chili Kimono – $26 Wooden Arrow Necklace - $25

Hearth & Soul 1410 Market Street Tallahassee, FL 32312 850-894-7685 Haute Diggity Dog Toys - $14 ea.

M&M Monogramming 2030 Thomasville Road Tallahassee, FL 32308 850-514-3148 Heavy Metal Door Hanger (Personalization included in price) $60

Tallahassee Nurseries 2911 Thomasville Road Tallahassee, FL 32308 850-385-2162 Kitras Art Glass Tree of Enchantment Glass Bulbs – Small - $27 Large - $29 Gold Basket - $15

Shop Local Narcissus 1408 Timberlane Road Tallahassee, FL 32312 850-668-4807 Lele Lily Pearl Minaudiere - $395 Lele French Cream Pearl Headband - $170

Walter Green 1817 Thomasville Road Tallahassee, FL 32303 850-999-6105 Carol & Frank Decorative Pillow - $54 Florida Cutting Board - $13 State of Florida Coaster - $20

Gypsy Rose 3421 Bannerman Road And 1410 Market Street Tallahassee, FL 850-321-3022 Gem Water Droplet - $69 Gem Water Diamonds Water Bottle – Diamantsplitter/ Bergkristall/Diamond Slivers/ Clear Quartz - $329 Gem Water Body & Soul Blue Apatite/Rose Quartz/Clear Quartz - $140 To Learn more about Gem Water Bottles –

Kanvas 823 Thomasville Road Tallahassee, FL 32303 850-224-7467 Bonblissity Bath Bombs $8 Body Truffle - $9 Assorted Scents Moisturizing Candy Scrubs - $20

tallahassee woman | 22 | october • november 2019

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tallahassee woman | 23 | october • november 2019

Walter Green Style



WE Elevat e



aren Veal was born an artist. The type of artist who likes to work with a variety of mediums. The type of artist who likes to help others discover their creative side and believes all art is beautiful if painted from the heart. “As long as I can remember, I’ve always been an artist,” said Karen. Raised in Newell, West Virginia, a small town with a one-stop light and a population under 1,500, she grew up exploring the banks of the Ohio River with her five older siblings. Newell is the home of the Homer Laughlin China Company, makers of the wellknown Fiestaware, and Karen’s mother, sisters and many other family members work or worked there as potters. “When I was a child, my mother would bring home lumps of clay from the pottery, and I would sculpt it,” Karen remembered, “I was always asking for clay.” Sculpting is something Karen would like to revisit. Not surprising given her sentimental connection as well as her fearlessness when it comes to trying new mediums. She works with watercolor, mixed media, oil, encaustic (a mixed media technique using heated beeswax and colored pigments) and photography. What’s her favorite medium? In a soft, unassuming voice, Karen shared her love of watercolor and credits her local, 85-year-old mentor for growing and encouraging her watercolor skills. “Nell Schulz has been my mentor for over 20 years. She

tallahassee woman | 24 | october • november 2019

treats me like a daughter and gives me art and personal advice.” A self-taught artist, Karen has no formal training. “I made good grades in school, yet art was always my favorite subject. I desperately wanted to study at the Pittsburgh Art Institute, but my family did not have the money,” Karen said. So, she joined the Air Force. It was a decision that brought Karen to Tyndall Air Force Base, introduced her to the Florida Panhandle and ultimately to her current home in Shell Point. She exudes happiness when describing the peace, she enjoys living by the water and the blessings of kind neighbors. All of which inspire her art and her desire to give back to the community she values and appreciates. Many of Karen’s paintings have nautical themes—a favorite subject is mermaids. Karen also gets requests to do pet portraits. Some of her cat creations are featured at Tallahassee’s Fat Cat Café. “Everyone loves their pets,” Karen said knowingly as she confided, “My boyfriend is a photographer, and we have the most photographed dog at Shell Point…Google the Goldendoodle.” She also has a cat named Heidi Klum. Karen excitedly described the many ways she shares the wonders of painting with others and the reward she feels when she sees the pride and pleasure it brings. “I hope to encourage life-long artists. Sometimes, I give some of my supplies away to someone who shows potential

and interest.” When teaching, a relaxed, positive atmosphere and approach is important to Karen. She has lead classes in her home, paint parties for groups or special occasions as well as an online class—something she would like to further explore. The cooler weather brings with it an idea Karen is hoping to make happen with a few of her artist friends—a plein air painting event at Shell Point or St. Marks. Plein air painting is painting and drawing outside in the landscape. The practice goes back centuries but was truly made into an art form by the French Impressionists. Their desire to paint light and its changing qualities encouraged artists to paint “en plein air,” which is French for “in the open air.”


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Karen also believes in supporting nonprofit organizations. “I’m often asked to donate paintings to charities, and I’m always open to that.” She has painted live at charitable events and pet portraits for local shelters and cat rescues. What does Karen enjoy doing when not painting? She paints. “I have a five-yearold granddaughter who loves to come over and paint with me. Always a nice surprise for her mom and dad…although I think they are running out of wall space.” When asked what’s next, Karen talks of possibly silversmithing or acquiring a kiln to fire clay pots and small sculptures. “I believe God has a new plan for my life. I may not know what it is, or it may not be what I think it is. I’m just going with the flow of love that emanates from my friends and family.” Karen's work is largely found online. She does have a Christmas show at Shell Point and LeMoyne. To see her work and learn more about classes and upcoming events, visit: Facebook: Karen Knight Veal, Artist Instagram: KarenVealArt Etsy: KarenVealArt

Bert Morales, M.D. Phone: 850.309.0356 Text: 850.629.0345 2003 Miccosukee Rd. tallahassee woman | 25 | october • november 2019

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Living Local | around town

Let Your Dreams Run Wild By Carelys Trujillo


magine walking into a massive structure—a two-peak tent—with playful music and all sorts of colors dancing in the air. Three rings decorated with people performing breathtaking acts that seem unimaginable—all happening right before your very eyes. The beautiful organized chaos mixed with the subtle scent of funnel cake, peanuts and big dreams is the Florida State University’s Flying High Circus.

I will never forget the day two smallstatured, particularly muscular people approached me and told me that I should join the circus. At first, I was in shock but somewhat intrigued. I thought to myself, “The circus must be filled with the strangest people at this university.” That same week I went to a gymnastics club meeting, but it didn’t feel like the right fit for me. Something told me to sign up for circus auditions, so I did.

For me, becoming a part of this circus was a dream come true. I came to Florida State feeling incomplete. Throughout my life I have always felt that there were two distinct parts to it—school and sports. First, it was gymnastics. I spent ten years participating in an athletically rigorous program that required more than 4 hours of practice every day. Once my gymnastics career was over so were my middle school years. In high school, I started to dance. Looking back, transitioning from a gymnast to a dancer was easy but at the time it required a lot of work, private lessons, and not to mention passion. Thankfully, this was not anything foreign to me. I found it easy to tackle. Coming into college I was scared; I didn’t think I was going to find a place where I can express myself like I have for the past fourteen years. But then, the circus found me.

In high school, I auditioned every year for the dance team, so this wasn’t new but for some reason, I was nervous. Then came audition day. The second I walked into the hut it felt like home. The warehouse ambiance, the vibrant people chatting away, the equipment mounted on the walls…suddenly, I felt at peace—this is exactly where I belonged. We spent the entire academic year practicing by finding time between our unusually busy young adult schedules, because we truly love what we do. The circus is our playground, a place where we can express our athleticism in the most creative way. It is also a home to all kinds of people who maybe would not have come together in their individual pasts. All of us, united by one common denominator—curiosity, and wondering how far we can push our bodies, pushing ourselves past

the fear, all to reach our next goal. That perseverance is contagious and is something I want to be around my whole life. Now, coming into my fourth year in the circus I have performed Teeterboard, Flying Trapeze, and Spanish Web—all acts that have required my fourteen years of practice. Between the costumes, the hours of practice, the makeup, the physical and mental demand, the rehearsals, most importantly the relationships, it’s what I like to call, “the perfect 70/30.” 70 percent artistic, 30 percent athletic, 100 percent unique. Every year we put on two series of shows, the first is in the fall for Halloween and the second is our epic home show series where we perform three shows every weekend in April. The Florida State University’s Flying High Circus is no doubt Tallahassee’s hidden gem. Under this big top, a special group of over one hundred Florida State students spend most—if not all—their time here. Throughout the year these performers not only practice and perform but also make friendships and build bonds what will last a life time. I am endlessly grateful that I was lured into the circus and that I was able to find such an artistic and athletic outlet, but most of all a home.

tallahassee woman | 26 | october • november 2019






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Living Local | sweet home tallahassee

greatness within ourselves and the power we possess, we could really make things better.

WHAT DRIVES YOU AND WHY ARE YOU SO PASSIONATE ABOUT YOUR WORK IN ADVOCATING FOR STUDENTS? I know so many students who are worried about loan debt, paying bills, working to help support their families, and just trying to stay afloat, that it’s hard to concentrate on school, which is the whole reason they are there. This is where my leadership roles come into play. I understand that I have been blessed. These blessings have allowed me access and opportunity. I use both to support and advocate for my fellow students; so that their concerns are addressed and their voices are heard. This is what drives me.

Zenani D. Johnson


enani D. Johnson made history in spring 2019 as the first elected African-American Student Government Association President at the University of West Florida. She was also elected to Chair the Florida Student Association (FSA), thereby earning a seat on the Florida Board of Governors, where she is responsible for representing over 300,000 students in the State University System. She is the founder of the Emergency Housing Program, created in her freshman year at UWF, which is being replicated on several campuses across Florida to assist homeless students or those at risk of homelessness. Her commitment to service and passion for improving the lives of young people has earned Ms. Johnson the United States Presidential Volunteer Service Award, two Congressional awards, the Governors Champion of Service Award, Bob Graham Youth Service Award, Florida Department of EducationVolunteer of the Year Award, the Girl Scouts of the Florida Panhandle-Visionary award in addition to many others. She is a mentor, public speaker, advocate and activist. WE are inspired by Governor, Trustee, and President Zenani D. Johnson. _________________________________

WHAT IGNITED YOUR PASSION FOR SERVING OTHERS? I have been volunteering and serving others since I was very young. My family has always volunteered in the community and in church. Till this day, my family still serves in the

community always helping others. It is ingrained in me to help others; it is part of who I am and as the need grows, so does my commitment to help.

WHAT 5 WORDS WOULD YOU USE TO DESCRIBE YOURSELF AND WHY? I am blessed, because I recognize that God truly guides, protects and favors me. I have work to do with the life HE has given me. I won’t waste it. I believe this is my calling. Oprah Winfrey says, “There is no greater gift you can give or receive than to honor your calling. It’s why you were born.” Because I work daily to make the world a better place, I believe I am also a Change-agent. I am a student, not just at the University of West Florida, but a student of life. I pay attention to lessons not only in my classes, but in the public spaces that I enter as well. You can learn something from anyone, if you’re open to it. I am a family-member. Now that I’m older I truly understand the quote, “It takes a village to raise a child.” My family is incredible and always there for me, but I also consider anyone who has mentored me, provided a listening ear, prayed for me or offered advice or help - a part of my extended village as well. I am also a proud African-American queen, who intends to inspire other young people to recognize the king or queen within themselves.

The chance to support my fellow students as a leader and activist has been humbling and exciting for me.

WHO OR WHAT INSPIRES YOU? I am inspired by the women in my family. I come from a long line of black queens. They have taught me how to bend, but not break. They have modeled for me how to keep moving forward, even when the path is unclear. They have shown me the importance of giving back and helping others.

DO YOU BELIEVE THAT THERE IS A CALLING ON YOUR LIFE AND IF SO WHAT IT IS? God has placed a calling on everyone’s life. God has placed us on this earth to fulfill the purpose He has assigned to each of us. Some people may not fulfill their purpose for reasons like, oppression, hopelessness, being distracted, not seeing the full potential within themselves, competing with others instead of being your own competition- so many different reasons. I want to help remove barriers, improve systems and provide support in order to help others find their voice or their purpose. I want to help eliminate those things that keep them from reaching their fullest potential. I really believe this is why I have been placed on this earth.


I believe that if we REALLY understood the tallahassee woman | 28 | october • november 2019

I want people to remember me as a friend. The relationships I’ve built with people are really the best part of my work. The connections and bonds I make with others is what keeps me going and help me to achieve my goals. A friend is someone who listens to you, someone you can confide in, someone you believe in and look up to, someone you know has your back and truly has good intentions for you. A friend is trustworthy. I want people to know that if they have no one else in the world that cares about them or what they are going through, I do. I want everyone around me to feel heard and valued. This is exactly how I want people to remember me.

Research • Conservation • Education

WHAT IS NEXT FOR ZENANI D. JOHNSON? Next year I’ll be graduating and I’m looking forward to what I hope will be a lot of different opportunities. I know that wherever I end up, I will continue working to bring awareness to problems that affect marginalized communities, and dismantling systems that have left so many of our young people behind. I plan to continue my role as a public speaker and advocate; working to educate our youth about intentionality, setting goals and actually showing them how to achieve their goals. All of us should strive to make the world a much better place for those who come after us. Whatever I do, I will continue to prepare the way for the next young person to sit in the same spaces that I’ve vacated. Whatever their dream, I want to help them to fulfill it. ______________________ Photo credit: Jordan Negron

Tall Timbers’ mission is to foster exemplary land stewardship through research, conservation and education 13093 Henry Beadel Drive | Tallahassee, FL 32312 (850) 893-4153 |

Come explore the

Award - Winning

tallahassee woman | 29 | october • november 2019






Currently COO of RedEye Coffee, Barby Moro is a Miami transplant who is proud to have chosen Tallahassee as her home. She is a Lifetime Founding Member of The Oasis Center for Women and Girls, sister of Kappa Delta Chi Hispanic sorority, and a proud graduate of Leadership Tallahassee, Class 28. When she is not drinking café con leche, she is spending time with her familia. “I couldn't be prouder of my raices (roots) and all those that sacrificed and paved the way for me to be here today. I am my ancestors' wildest dreams and I strive to make them proud. Being Latinx for me means being a part of the most beautifully put together mosaic. Hispanic and Latinx people can be of any race and any ancestry. It's why we don't all look the same; we don't fit into any box. I feel an instant connection with any woman who is Hispanic or Latinx. In that moment I know; here is someone who gets it— who gets how we are more than just one thing and no stereotype ever gets it right because there is no stereotype for all of us (plus all stereotypes are silly, anyway). Pa'lante! ”

Lisa Garcia is currently the COO and partner at Sachs Media Group. She is a former communicator for the Teamsters in Washington, D.C., and winner of an Emmy JOSIE TAMAYO Award and multiple Florida Public Relations Association Image Awards as well as AdFed ADDY Awards. Josefina “Josie” Tamayo was born in Santiago de Cuba, “When I think about what it means to be Latina, I think Cuba, emigrated to the United States with her parents of family, pride, traditions, and how hard my parents and brother once Castro took control of the country, worked to provide me with the best opportunities. It’s and eventually grew up in Milledgeville, Georgia their hope and unconditional love that drives me with her sister and and want me to do the same for my family. Being a first-gen means I’m the keeper of my culture, I’m responsible for passing down traditions, all the while embracing my American culture. I will never apologize for being brown, and I also have the right to be proud of my American heritage without fear of judgment from others. Hispanics are proud people, we’ve got an incredible sense of family, work ethic, and self-reliance. We come in all shapes, sizes, and colors and we make up 18% of the population. Places like Texas, New Mexico, California, and Utah — that’s where we’re from. For this month, I challenge non-Latinos to RO demonstrate compassion for others and to pray ARBY MO B and show the way to those chasing the American dream. ” tallahassee woman | 30 | october • november 2019

two brothers. She received her bachelor’s degree from Emory University and her Law degree from Georgia State University. Josie calls herself a “CUBAN GRIT”— which is a Cuban girl raised in the South! She started Tamayo Mediation and Consulting, LLC in 2017 and most recently has been appointed as the Chief of Staff for the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. “I am truly proud of my Cuban heritage and the sacrifices that my parents have made that enabled our family to live in this wonderful country where freedom reigns supreme. We were taught to be respectful, take great pride in our heritage and others, and educate and learn other cultures and traditions. Being Cuban I celebrate my Hispanic heritage every day as I live the American dream and give thanks to those who sacrifice their lives so that we can enjoy ours. Today I challenge everyone to reach out to one another and learn from our traditions and cultures to protect our freedoms and liberties that make us the envy of the world. God bless you all.” LILIAN GARCIA ROIG Born in Havana, Cuba, Lilian Garcia Roig was raised and worked in Texas for 30 years and now lives and works in Tallahassee. Her latest works feature largescale on-site painting installations of dense landscapes that overwhelm the viewer’s perceptual senses. Each individual painting is created over the course of the day in an intense wet-on-wet cumulative manner that underscores the complex nature of trying to capture firsthand the multidimensional and ever-changing experience of being in that specific location. “Having now been on the FSU faculty of the Art Department for 18 years, I can say that what I do in


LILIAN GARCIA ROIG Tallahassee is work on, teach and share my interests in art and nature with the local as well as national communities I engage with. As a Cuban-born immigrant who was educated in America, I can say that I my CubanAmerican “hyphenated status” helps me serve as a type of bridge that can understand, empathize, represent and share my two distinct cultures with people traveling in either direction.” MARCIA WARFEL Marcia Warfel currently serves as a program manager for the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Serving the State of Florida, she has held numerous positions within the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) for 12 years, culminating as the Bureau Chief for Recovery and Mitigation. Marcia also has held the position of Florida Citizen Corps Program Manager, post 9-11. During this time, she conducted numerous training courses, presentations, and workshops nationally and internationally aimed at developing volunteer resources and volunteer management. Marcia also served as a delegate to the Florida Association for Volunteer Action in the Caribbean and the Americas, serving as a volunteer resource manager in Honduras post Hurricane Mitch. She is an active community advocate for women and girls, and humanitarian relief.


tallahassee woman | 31 | october • november 2019

Living Local

Hiplet Ballerinas October 3, 2019 Ruby Diamond Concert Hall

Experience the show stopping Hiplet Ballerinas from 7:30 pm to 10:30 pm at FSU’s Ruby Diamond Concert Hall. Recently featured on and by Good Morning America and Vogue, this style of dance is sure to delight as it combines “hip hop” and “ballet” as they pioneer the dance landscape with their unique style. For ticket information visit

Experience Asia Festival October 5, 2019 Lewis and Bloxham Parks

Presented by the Asian Coalition of Tallahassee, and the third biggest annual event in the city, Experience Asia is an event for all ages. Come and be immersed in Asian and Asian Pacific cultures through exhibitors, food, hands-on activities, performances and demonstrations. For more information visit

Alabama Concert October 10, 2019 Donald L. Tucker Civic Center

Watch Alabama perform with special guests The Charlie Daniels Band from 7pm-10pm at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center. Join them for their 50thanniversary tour that celebrates this rags-to-riches band and their summers playing together. For more information and tickets, visit,


October 11 - 27, 2019 Fallon Theater at FSU The Fallon Theater at FSU presents “Chicago” in the roaring era of 1920’s Jazz, bootleggers,


aute appenings

and celebrity criminals. Showtimes will vary. For tickets and more information visit


October 18, 2019 The Pavilion in The Centre of Tallahassee The 21st Annual Oktoberfest will celebrate authentic German cuisine, unlimited drinks, live games, and entertainment. Proceeds for the event go to fundraising efforts benefiting the Elder Care Services and Meals on Wheels. Admission prices vary based on the donation amount. For tickets and information visit eldercarebigbend.oktoberfest.

8th Annual Tallahassee Science Festival October 19, 2019 Tallahassee Community College, TCC @ Kleman Plaza

Tallahassee Community College presents the 8th Annual Tallahassee Science Festival from 10 am - 2 pm at Kleman Plaza to explore different career opportunities for #TCC2Work. Be sure to bring your kids, it will be a day full of STEM exploration and fun! Perfect for ages pre-K to adults. Admission is free.

Halloween Symphony Spooktacular October 27, 2019 Cascades Park

The Tallahassee Parks, Recreation, & Neighborhood Affairs Department & Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra present a Halloween fun event for all ages! Come dressed up from 6pm - 8:30 pm for trick-or-treating, connect,

food trucks, and drinks. Admission is free!

78th Annual North Florida Fair November 7 – 17, 2019 North Florida Fairgrounds

New changes have come around, as the 78th Annual North Florida Fair will be a thrill for all ages. Stop by for 17 days of fun beginning on November 7th and ending November 17th. For more information visit

Directors Tour: Native American Heritage Month November 9, 2019 The Grove Museum

Engage in Tallahassee's rich Native American history from 2:30 pm - 4 pm at The Grove Museum. This in-depth guided tour will focus on American history and preservation. Admission is free and open to the public for all ages. For contact information visit facebook/ TheGroveMuseum.

Tallahassee Veteran’s Day Parade November 12, 2019 Brevard Street and Tennessee St

Bring your family and loved ones to support our veterans! The parade will begin at the intersection of Monroe St. and Tennessee St. at 10:45 am and move down Monroe St. More information can be found

tallahassee woman | 32 | october • november 2019

Artisans in the Garden

Science Night at the Library

November 16, 2019 2911 Thomasville Road

It's Artisans in the Garden time again at Tallahassee Nurseries! We're Really looking forward to hosting over 50 exciting, local artists in many types of media. The music for this year will be Ric Edmiston from 9:30 until 1:00, and the HOT TAMALE, an acoustic duo made up of Adrian Fogelin and Craig Reeder from 1:30 until 5:00. The Food Trucks are Mann’s Doghouse, the Cake Shop, and Doughnut Kingdom will be here for breakfast. Please join us as we celebrate our 23rd year of Artisans with wonderful food, lively music, and creative people sharing their talents with us. Great Christmas shopping opportunities too!

November 21, 2019 - Electricity Leroy Collins Leon County Public Library Electricity is fundamental in our daily lives! Discover what really happens as Science Night explores through this educational demonstration and experiments for kids and families. Admission is free and the events take place between 6:30pm - 7:30 pm.

Call 850-385-2162 for information.

Tom Brown Park

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ithin all art forms there is something magical—an exchange between the creator and the consumer, where both delight in the experience of having shared an elemental transcendence of the human spirit. It’s a multidimensional relationship that connects us at a deeper level and to what really matters in the recipe of life. Chef Shac (Shacafrica) Simmons, owner of Chef Shac LLC is passionate about this process, and its power to shape a person and a community, such as it did for her own. The language of food was spoken into Chef Shac’s life from the beginning, but she didn’t know it would speak into the being of her destiny as the successful owner of a catering business and a winner of Food Network’s “Chopped.” Where she’s at now is a far cry from her childhood and most of her adulthood, when poverty, food insecurity, and even homelessness would

tallahassee woman | 35 | october • november 2019


relentlessly batter her formidable will to succeed and make a difference. She says, “If I stop to think about the trials and the struggles I’d quit and give up. I’ve got a legacy to leave and I don’t want to let anyone down. It keeps me motivated and moving forward.” Originally from Delray Beach, Florida, her family moved to Tallahassee in the 1980s so her mom, Sharon, could attend Florida A & M University (FAMU). In Delray, her memories of food involve family relationships, particularly the one with her grandfather, Henry Lee, who taught her how to cook with onhand, Southern-style ingredients mixed with Bahamian flair. “He was the first one to put me in the kitchen to cook. He made concoctions of weird things thrown together—smoked oyster dip with onions, ketchup, and hot sauce, mango cobblers or turtle stew. He used whatever was in season or could be acquired in nature. We’d shell peas all day on the porch, and harvest oranges, lemons, grapefruit and mangos from our backyard. Everyone wanted to come by and eat when he cooked. My family is of Caribbean descent, so there’s a lot of onions, peppers, garlic and seafood mixed into my Southern farm-to-table recipes.” In Tallahassee, cooking for survival became the norm as they often faced a threadbare food supply, and as the oldest, she would sometimes go without eating so her younger siblings could have food. “There was one time that my mom was outside crying on the porch and she shared with a neighbor that her children were hungry. Later, neighbors brought us food and it really touched us since we lived in an impoverished area and no one had very much.” Though illustrated in different ways, both in Delray, and in Tallahassee, food served as the bridge of a community coming together in order to nourish the body and the soul. As young as 11, with her mother gone all day attending classes at FAMU and working nights, Chef Shac would make sure her brothers were ready for daycare, walk them there, and then walk to school. After school, she would care for them until her mother came home. “A lot of my push, drive and strength comes from my mom. She was really strong, resourceful, and we were a team—I had to do my part for all of us to be successful since she was doing her

best to give us a better life.” After finishing at FAMU, the family moved back to South Florida where Sharon took a teaching job, but economics were still a struggle. After graduating high school, Chef Shac moved to Tallahassee to attend FAMU, got married and had her first child, Jennishua (Kiki), but soon after left school in order to be a mother full-time. After the birth of her second child, Jada, and having had a traumatic experience from her first two births, she became interested in pregnancy and birthing techniques, she was a doula and worked in midwifery and childbirth education at the Birth Cottage, formerly known as the Birth Center, and attended over 50 births. “I want women to be empowered—that’s been a constant theme in my life.” After the birth of her third child, Jeffrey Jr., her husband had a job opportunity in Birmingham, Alabama. Chef Shac intended to become a nurse midwife and Birmingham had a program there, so they moved in 1998. However, the nurse midwifery program went inactive soon after their move, and Chef Shac turned her sights to culinary school. “At the time, cooking was just a job I did at home, but I never thought being a chef was a possibility for me and I was intimidated by it—I was afraid to jump in and fail.” Once she started classes at the Culinary Institute of Virginia College in Birmingham, she soon learned that what she already knew, had names. “I didn’t know that putting fat and flour together and browning it to make a sauce was a thing that chefs did. Or, making sure to let flour and fat brown is called making a blond or a dark roux; and onions, bell peppers and garlic is called the Trinity —that’s just how I always cooked. It was all about layering flavor.” What left a deep impact on Chef Shac was having an African American female Chef (Dennie) as one of her main instructors and who became a mentor. “There is a lack of diversity in the culinary field, particularly when it comes to women of color. To see a woman in a leadership position that looked like me was empowering and it gave me the confidence to know that I could do this.” She would eventually graduate with two degrees—Culinary Arts and Pastry and Confectionary, while embracing a passion for cooking.

Her first jobs as a chef sharpened her skillsets, and her professional trajectory seemed to be bright. It was the divorce from her husband when life took an unexpected turn. Then, things got worse when she was let go from her job due to a medical issue, which led to a lack of permanent housing. “I found myself in this place of despair, and even lived in my car at one point, but I would take any cooking or catering job that would come my way so I could stay close to my children. There was one instance that I was cooking in a hotel room, my ‘home’ at the time, while looking out the window at the venue that I would be serving the food that day. It was a low moment for me.” It was a hard day when Chef Shac knew she needed to leave Alabama, which brought her back to Tallahassee. “It was tough for me and my children, but I did it so I could find a better life for me and for them.” Eventually, she landed a job as Executive Chef at FAMU, and in the years she worked there she became close with her coworker, friend and now fellow business partner, Kirtrecia Washington, or as most people know her, Chef K. Echoing Chef Shac’s earlier sentiments, Chef K said, “Chef Shac was the first African American female, executive chef that I had ever seen or worked with. It was life-changing.” When the company they worked for transitioned from FAMU, the two Chefs took that as an opportunity to build something greater—it was the burgeoning aroma of an idea that had been simmering in the mind of Chef Shac for a long time, ever since she was a young girl struggling to make sense of the disparity in the world around her. First, she began researching locally sourced food, and meeting with Southside and Frenchtown community stakeholders such as Miaisha Mitchell, Executive Director of Greater Frenchtown Revitalization Council, Nathan Ballantine (The Man in Overalls) and Co-Founder (with Miaisha) of Tallahassee Food Network, and Courtney Atkins, Executive Director of Whole Child Leon. She was written into several grants which provided seed money, but also planted herself as a part of the culture of a community working together to meet the needs of its residents. “There’s

tallahassee woman | 36 | october • november 2019

what inspired it, and where it came from. Along with that were performances by poets, singers, dancers, musicians, and live paintings or sculptures by visual artists who captured the mood and scenes in the room. “The reason we created this event was because people weren’t thinking about food when they thought about art. Showing the connection between cuisine and other artforms incorporates it all together, and we wanted them to have a ‘sensory experience’, which is when we give and share something and ask that attendees share as well. That is what art is.”

tremendous potential in empowering people through their food. Food was grown in community gardens and I taught them how to cook it. This also helped to show everyone where their food comes from since a lot of people didn’t know what fresh produce looked like.” She used this time to build her brand and positioning herself as a leader in sourcing local, soulful food. “This is how we created the Southern Fusion— take what’s growing beautifully in the south and fuse it into other cultural recipes and show how amazing it can be. It’s not fried, it’s what’s grown in the South, such as okra, pecans, collard greens…I must have 10 collard recipes alone.” Additionally, she wanted to bridge the culinary arts with the rest of the art community, and advocate for more minority representation in arts and culture, particularly in the chef arena. To help do this, Chef Shac LLC debuted “The Sensory Experience” in 2014 at various venues. Interspersed with the serving of a four-coursemeal paired with wine, Chef Shac narrated the preparation of the food,

In 2017, Chef Shac was a judge in Food Network’s “Chopped Jr.”, which was a fundraiser for Whole Child Leon. It gave her the opportunity to meet the Executive Producer, Linda Lea, who was intrigued by her story. She was asked to participate in the interview process which would allow her to be considered for a spot on an upcoming episode of “Chopped.” It was significant that a film crew came to Tallahassee to interview Chef Shac. “They told me, ‘We never come to a city for one person. The only time we do this is for a major star.’ They interviewed me and everybody was in tears and said, ‘Now we know why it was important for us to come here.’” One month after the interview, Chef Shac flew to New York City to become a participant, and Champion of “Chopped,” Season 35, Episode 13--“Greater Tater,” and was the first Tallahassee chef to do so. Since that experience, Chef Shac has reflected on the many gifts it has given, and it all started with one mantra: “Don’t go in defeated. Go in thinking about dessert.” If she could make it to the dessert round, she knew she’d have a fighting chance at taking the crown. Juxtaposed to her desire to win was her calling to be an encourager, to herself and to others, including the young, African American man in the final round who she spoke to as if he were her own son. “The process was life-changing since at first I didn’t feel worthy to be there. As time passed, I felt God’s presence all around me, and the will of my family, friends, and Tallahassee for me to win—the strength and energy from my community gave

tallahassee woman | 37 | october • november 2019

me the push to do it.” The icing on the cake, or in this case, the sweet potato pie wonton, was her resilient, giving spirit. Of course, winning came with money and more exposure, and even an honorary key to the City, but it gifted her with confidence and legitimized her dream in a way that proved she could do this at a high level. And, “I know it encouraged other women of color to pursue the culinary arts.” Soon after winning the “Chopped” title, Chef Shac began to market and direct sale the, Get Shac’d beverage and seasoning blend lines. Most recently, Chef Shac LLC was awarded the 2019 Out of the Box Business of the Year from the Small Business Development Center. This is one of many accolades after years of sacrificing and a determination to keep going no matter how hard it gets, and she has built a brand known for culinary excellence and uniting everyone around the he(art) of food, something that only a master artist can do. As she works towards opening a restaurant by 2020, Chef Shac (who has had other opportunities in bigger cities), stays rooted in the foundation in which she was first planted, but she needs the community’s help to really bloom. “We are looking for investors and supporters who believe in the vision of bringing locally sourced, Southern Fusion cuisine to the community. We would welcome any help in that regard. It’s taken a lot to get to this point, and I have faith that we will see a restaurant in our future.” Ultimately, that’s Chef Shac’s main message—that despite the hardships and the struggles, she wants people to see her as an overcomer, to envision their dreams becoming a reality, and that they can be a champion too. “Inspiring and empowering is my focus. Even in trials and struggles you can still be strong. You may not feel it, but you are, and you can draw from that divine strength. That’s the only reason why I’m here—with faith, hope and perseverance, anything is possible. Keep it Flavorful!” For more information about Chef Shac, her products and her soon-to-be restaurant, visit, and follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.





Hidden Time Stealers



t’s nearly 5 o'clock and you've been busy all day, but you just realized you have not started on the tasks you intended to complete for the day! What happened? If this has ever happened to you, you are not alone. The modern working woman has a lot going on. She is often doing more than one job, learning new skills, juggling deadlines, running to meetings, skipping lunch, and putting in overtime. This can leave her feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, and lead to burn out.

Turn the volume down or off, and decide if the email is important and urgent, if not, respond later.

personal texts, emails and calls until lunch or after work.

2. Phone calls – use caller ID to determine if the call may be important and urgent. If you have to answer the phone, ask if you can call them back at a scheduled time that works best for you. Use your cell phone for all personal calls.

“I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent. ” - U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower When faced with time sensitive projects, you can refer to the Eisenhower box which can help evaluate urgency and importance. Try this technique for prioritizing activities into four categories. 1- Tasks that are urgent and important are done immediately and personally. 2Tasks that are important, but not urgent are given a deadline and are done personally. 3- Tasks that are unimportant, but urgent are delegated. 4- Tasks that are not important and not urgent are dropped.  

MYTH—PRODUCTIVITY = WORKING HARDER AND LONGER, OFTEN DISGUISED AS MULTITASKING. TRUTH—PRODUCTIVITY = ACCOMPLISHING MORE IN LESS TIME, BY STRATEGIC PLANNING. Three things you can do today to increase your productivity include managing distractions, prioritizing your tasks, and seeking out timeless resources.

MANAGING DISTRACTIONS Forbes identifies many common distractions that disrupt productivity. Here are suggestions for minimizing the effects of the top five workplace distractions when working on time sensitive deadlines:

1. Audible email alerts – when you have

an audible email alert that “bings” loudly, you may feel compelled to respond at once.

3. Pop-ins by co-workers – request a

scheduled time to meet later or plan a lunch to continue the conversation. The reverse is true for popping-in on managers, schedule a time to bring your list and discuss items all at one time.

4. Surrounding noises – other people’s

conversations, noisy printers and copy machines, nearby ringing phones, bathroom and elevator doors. If you are working in a cubicle floor plan and near community areas, it is difficult to focus with the myriad of these constant noises. If you do not get used to these distractions, try earplugs, or request a transfer to a quieter setting.

5. Personal cellphone – Our private lives are also running at full speed. Between personal commitments and social media alerts, your cellphone can derail your momentum. Reserve responding to


TIMELESS RESOURCES Discover a new perspective or revisit a classic – download an audio book and let the experts weigh-in on your workload. Here is a short list to get you started: The One-Minute Manger by Kenneth H. Blanchard clarifies if the task or interruption requires immediate attention, can be done at a later time, or can be delegated to another person altogether.  First Things First by Steven Covey, is a time management approach encouraging effective habits by aligning oneself with first things. Eat That Frog by Brian Tracy, an answer to conquering procrastination and accomplishing more.   Work smarter, save time, and increase your productivity by keeping distractions to a minimum, organizing your urgent tasks, and seeking timeless resources with proven results. 

tallahassee woman | 38 | october • november 2019



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Business | women to watch

WOMENto watch N E W S | A W A R D S | M I L E S T O N E S

Dr. Aixa Guzmán recently joined Periodontal Associates of North Florida

as the first female periodontist in Tallahassee. With over 18 years of experience, her diverse background and training enables her to help the community pursue their long-term dental care. Dr. Guzmán brings her expertise to each patient through the comprehensive and individualized diagnosis treatment plans that include the patients’ goals, needs, and risk tolerance. Her experience and passion make Dr. Guzmán a great addition not only to Periodontal Associates of North Florida, but Tallahassee as well.

Andra Cornelius

CareerSource Florida Senior Vice President of Business & Workforce Development Andra Cornelius, CEcD, has been selected to receive a Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Education at Florida State University. From among more than 40,000 alumni of the College of Education, only a handful have received this recognition. Andra’s background and experience have been instrumental in CareerSource Florida’s efforts to advance many key workforce and economic development initiatives that positively impact Florida’s economy. During her nearly 20-year tenure within Florida’s workforce system, Andra has led the provision of more than $324 million in awarded grants used to train more than 365,000 Floridians for jobs in key state industries.

Olivia Heyward, owner of

OH Creative Boutique, recently partnered with Tallahassee Woman Magazine as Creative Director. With nearly 12 years experience as a Brand Designer, Olivia’s background in graphic design and brand development provides a fresh perspective for not only from a design aspect, but for brand strategy as well. She is passionate about helping women entrepreneurs to create authentic brands and to develop strategies to launch or expand their business.

Shelly Joines is an up-and-coming

meetings and management professional with Partners in Association Management. She has become the “go to” professional for large conferences and event planning, set up and execution, as well as governance board management. Among her responsibilities is serving as program manager for the Society of Insurance Trainers and Educators. Shelly is also an active volunteer with many philanthropic organizations in the community, including serving as Vice President of the Greater Tallahassee Chi Omega Alumnae Board.

Women to Watch includes announcements of promotions, awards, business openings and milestones of business and professional women in the Tallahassee community. Submit your announcements for Women to Watch to

tallahassee woman | 40 | october • november 2019


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Business | first job

First Job Stories

KHADIJA HARRIS Application Developer, Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles “One of my first jobs, while developing into an IT professional, was to serve as a help desk technician. I didn't think very much of the job at the time because it was just a means to make money until I graduated. However, when it became time for me to leave, one of the contractors working with the state agency offered me a job with their company. Although I did not accept the position, I was elated, honored, and surprised to be presented with the offer. I did not have an interview or an onsite visit, but I was presented with an offer letter and opportunity. Thankfully, my thoughts of the job did not reflect in my work ethic. It was at that moment that I realized people are watching, and people are observing. I realized that you can be auditioning, interviewing, or trying out for a position, role, or opportunity and not know it. I realized to always put forth my greatest effort in every job and task that I am given, for I never know who's silently watching. ”

JEANNA OLSON Florida Department of Children and Families, Community Development Administrator

“My first job was at a home visitor program. We had to make home visits weekly to new mothers, who accepted the voluntary service, for up to 18 months. These moms were so willing to learn about parenting and economic stability and were incredibly welcoming and loving. My take-aways were that we may not all live the same, parent the same, react the same to situations, but that we all love our children and will do the best we can for them no matter what! It started to form my "why" that I have in my current profession and it has helped me to have a greater understanding of the home visits our staff is required to complete. I have discovered how our mission is important to our families in the community. ” CARLA LAROCHE Clinical Professor/ Director, Gender and Family Justice Clinic “I got paid $2 per week for my first job; I was in the first grade, and I thought I was rich. I worked from home, as my "job" was to wash the dishes twice a week and vacuum the house every Saturday. Some would call my job "house chores" and question why my parents were paying me at all; I, however, saw my job as a necessity—my parents did not really give me a choice—and as a source of power, I was free to buy what I wanted. I was an independent woman! I remember gleefully buying snacks at the school cafeteria with my earnings. I calculated exactly how long I had to work to get my favorite ice cream and saved until I could buy it. Over time, I contemplated asking for a raise, with the understanding that my parents would probably expect me to take on extra chores, however. Even back then, I enjoyed completing my tasks and took

pride in getting paid for doing good work. That sense of joy and pride has not diminished one iota as I undertake my duties as a clinical law professor. CATHERINE KEEN National Service Program Director, Volunteer Florida

“My first “full time, wear grown-up clothes" job after college was as a counselor at ECHO, a Tallahassee non-profit organization. I remember getting my first paycheck and crying on the curb because I didn't understand withholdings and wasn't sure how I could pay my rent. Almost twenty years later, I know exactly which box in my closet holds my very first name badge and business card. ” At ECHO, I learned how much it costs for a family of five to purchase monthly supplies at the Dollar Store, what a heroine high looks like on a young girl and that it is important to always include peanut butter in the bag of groceries because it lasts. I also learned about the power of equity. I learned that while equality may be about leveling the playing field, equity was essential for my clients because they needed more. The people I grew to care deeply about had massive obstacles to overcome to attain stable housing and self-sufficiency. They needed more. I think about equity regularly as we work to address some of our state's most pressing challenges. I have the incredible honor to engage in the work of leveraging more, much more, to people that need more, through long term and sustainable direct service. ”

tallahassee woman | 42 | october • november 2019

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Dr. Kerry McCord has practiced “the best of natural medicine” since 1973. He is a renowned clinician, author and educator, internationally known for his contributions to the practice of applied kinesiology. He uniquely serves those whose life has been disrupted by persistent and seemingly unresolvable health challenges. What Women Are Saying: “After years of pain in my right arm, legs and back, I was resigned to the fact that I would have to live like this for the rest of my life. Every morning I awakened with varying degrees of discomfort, especially aggravated when I tried to walk.

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Thank God, I was referred to Dr. McCord. He has a warm and comforting manner, is brilliant and engaging. None of his treatment involved medication or shots. Best of all, after my first visit, my once chronic pain was gone and has not returned.” Mrs. Patricia Proctor, Tallahassee, FL Whatever your problem may be… there is hope!

tallahassee woman | 43 | october • november 2019

tallahassee woman | 44 | october • november 2019

DR. JEANNE O’KON Professor/Teacher Education, Flagler College Tallahassee “I earned my Master's degree at age 22 and started teaching college Psychology classes. I was hired into a Social Sciences department that housed nearly all-male professors. My part-time faculty position quickly became full-time, and I was fortunate to fall into a job that I loved— working with college students. My early mentors were all male, including the Dean. Most were encouraging and helpful.  But working with nearly all men had its challenges, and some of them had interesting ways of expressing dominance.  There were a few clashes and I had to “stand my ground.” Over time, one of the few female faculty members took me under her wing, and true, long-lasting mentoring began. She modeled quiet strength, but also a “take no prisoners” attitude. We team-taught the “Psychology of Women” course for many years until her retirement. My Dean (a male) encouraged me to complete my Ph.D. degree and literally made it possible by altering my teaching schedule. My co-teacher (a female) provided guidance for the daily challenges of college teaching as well as for some personal issues. From this experience, I learned that support and mentoring for young women can be found where you least expect it.  And it is extremely valuable to have that kind of support early in one’s career! ”

tallahassee woman | 45 | october • november 2019




S tyle


tallahassee woman | 46 | october • november 2019


radition, love, and faith are the keystones of the belief that keep the FSU President's mansion so vibrant, welcoming, and lovely. It has a rich history of housing FSU Presidents— as it is part museum and home to Jean "Gigi" and John Thrasher, the current President and First Lady of the university. The home's four floors are decorated with rich garnets and vibrant hues to accentuate a rustic and clean aesthetic that the home takes on, in the inspiration of it's a connection to FSU and it's history.

Every few years or so, the FSU President's house becomes a new home and essentially a new space for the next president and family. This is an honorable tradition tied to the university's history, for the Thrashers since they made it their home in 2014. It's striking how a mansion filled with imposing tradition can so inexplicitly feel like a home sweet home. It is how we welcome our guests, and how we decorate our space that give off the warm and welcome invitation that creates an atmosphere. It is an honor for a Florida State student to be invited to the house for various celebratory activities. They believe it is important to play a part in the lives of the students, faculty and staff, as well as alumni members at FSU and this, is, of course, enveloped into it’s charming atmosphere that covers their home where they host over 130 events per year. "I want students to feel like FSU is their home away from home, and it's one reason why I love to share the beauty of the President's House. This is your home, we're just the tenants!" Jean says.


AT HISTORIC CARSON HOUSE MUSEUM by regina lynch-hudson photography by courtland bivens iii

Long an American tradition, families typically travel during Thanksgiving to grandmother’s house for the usual gathering of kinfolks— to fellowship and give thanks for the year’s blessings. Consider abandoning your usual travel destination for an ancestral journey to discover your roots! There’s no more memorable way to spend Thanksgiving than touring your ancestral hometown or uncovering plantations and cultural landscapes where loved ones once dwelled. Imagine my nomadic inspiration when I discovered that the home of my foremother, Princess Kadella, still stands—revived as a museum in Marion, North Carolina. The Historic Carson House granted me a glimpse into the life of my great-great-great grandmother, as well as a viewing of her glass-encased vintage quilt (c. 1810-1820)—one of the most renowned quilts in the country. “Kadella’s quilt is among the finest examples of quilt-making of the 18th and 19th century in North America,” states Historic Carson House Historian Dr. Jim Haney, citing information derived from conservators of textile who restored the acclaimed quilt. When Kadella, an African princess from Barbados, constructed the intricately handappliqued quilt using blossoms cut from French chintz, she could have never imagined that

the primitive quilt would become a focal point exhibit in the Historic Carson House. Nor could Kadella have fathomed that a representation of her quilt pattern would be imprinted onto a silk scarf worn by me, her prideful descendant, as I toured the Historic Carson House some two hundred year later.

Historic Carson House is a vast three-story plantation home, built in 1793, by Colonel John Carson. The house museum showcases restored rooms, period furnishings, and memorabilia that echo the stories of former inhabitants’ daily existence. I scribbled furiously in my notepad as I was led beyond haughty antiques and heirloom wall portraits to the most celebrated contents of the house—the quilt collection, a rich testament to the handiwork of African slaves.

Colonel John Carson and allowed to pursue needlework in her own private cabin.

Need a dose of motivation to get you into the spirit of a heritage-bound hunt for heirlooms? Pull out your family tree and a map! There’s no telling what treasures lurk throughout museums, attics, or local county records. Kadella’s lauded quilt helped Carson descendants begin to unravel the fabric of Kadella’s paradoxical existence—of both vulnerability and tenacity. The quilt-symbolizes the profound irony of my foremother’s plight—where former royalty found herself an ocean away from her native land and previously enjoyed high status as a noble, now in a position of submission and servitude. The elaborately stitched bouquet was Kadella’s enduring gift to her forebears.

Another lasting gift to forebears is the gift of family DNA testing, according to professional genetic genealogist Connie Bradshaw. “Historic Carson House has wholeheartedly Legend suggests that Princess Kadella’s feisty supported participation in the ongoing John pride remained fiercely intact, despite her dire Carson of Western North Carolina DNA circumstances—a slave and presumed mistress to Project at, used to master Colonel John Carson. identify descendants of Kadella and the original families living on Carson Plantation in A revolutionary woman, Kadella was reportedly the early 1800’s.” carted around by fellow slaves in an elevated sedan chair, an uncommon and grandiose mode of transport for a person of bondage. The prolific quiltmaker refused to do ordinary work assigned to slaves. She was exempted from manual labor by tallahassee woman | 48 | october • november 2019

Marion, North Carolina

Historic Carson House is open for the season April – November; Wednesday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. (last tour leaves at 3:00 p.m.); and Sunday, 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. (last tour leaves at 4 p.m.). Tickets: $7 per adult. No charge for Children 12 and under.

The Jubilee Arbor at the Historic Carson House, completed in 2015, is a premier community event space. The classic motif makes for a charming quant locale for girl’s getaways, luncheons, meetings and weddings alike. To rent the Jubilee Arbor, call the Historic Carson House at (828) 724-4948.

tallahassee woman | 49 | october • november 2019


e r u t l C u Veteran publicist and luxury lifestyle experienceaholic Regina Lynch-Hudson pens MadameXhales, slated towards the vintage of women, that according to studies, enjoys more time to travel, indulges in longer trips and selects more extravagant travel accommodations. The exacting taste of MadameXhales finds her exploring destinations, cruises, resorts, spas and extracurricular activities where like-minded Xhalers have experienced innerexhilaration! © Contact MadameXhales: thewritepublicist@

tallahassee woman | 50 | october • november 2019

Yoga (Hot + Not!) At Hot Yoga Tallahassee we are committed to providing safe, high quality yoga classes allowing you the space to cultivate health, wellness & balance.

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tallahassee woman | 51 | october • november 2019


mental health matters

Dance to a New Song


ave you ever spent time reflecting on the personal stories you have on repeat in your mind? You know, those things you believe about yourself and repeat to yourself and others without even thinking about them? These are storylines, often negative in nature, that we are programmed to believe. Likely, someone said something to us as a child or at an impressionable time in our lives, and we started to self-identify with the message.

Examples are things like— “You aren’t good at math.” “You are too fragile to play contact sports.” “Women in our family have weight problems.” “You are too emotional to lead a company.” When internal programming happens from messaging like this, we usually build other messages on top of them and then we make decisions about our lives based on this complex web of beliefs that might not even be a true representation of who we are or what we are capable of. Unfortunately, these beliefs become so engrained they might as well be as true as the name we were given at birth and the city we grew up in.

The Power of Mental Messages By Peggy Smith

What if the messages we have on repeat aren’t true? What if we have been held back from adventure and experience because we don’t believe we are capable of something we are in fact, fully capable of? A perfect example for me was when I was talked into trying Crossfit. I had a lot of personal messaging going on with beliefs about what I could and couldn’t do—which translated into potential self-sabotage about what this experience was going to be like. I had to fight against the voices in my head that told me I wasn’t strong enough, wasn’t built like an athlete, and wasn’t qualified. However, I did fight those voices and now when I look back at the two years I’ve spent doing Crossfit, my main takeaway is how it caused me to believe I can do anything! It changed me from the inside out more than it changed my muscles and body fat percentages. The change was so profound because it allowed me to look at all the stories I had on repeat in my head and challenge each of them. I like inviting my clients to take some time to be still with that child inside who had something careless or mean said to them, who wanted very badly to be good at something but was told by an authority figure, or others, that they weren’t good enough, and so they never tried again. When we can connect with that sweet little one and tell them to try again, to believe

a different ending is attainable, to challenge the status quo, anything is possible. When it comes to our overall health, too often we are told of our options, or our future based on a current health diagnosis or issue. We internalize the messaging that we are sick and that being sick limits us. However, what current science reveals is that we have more control than we ever dreamed possible as it relates to our health. We can help prevent the onset of disease and even help reverse it once it has presented itself. We can claim ownership of our bodies and how they perform on the inside in much the same way we control how they perform on the outside. With better nutrition, better sleep, better breathing, less stress and less toxins anything is possible, but we must start by believing it is possible. We need to challenge the stories on repeat in our heads. We need to have a heart-to-heart with the child, or adult within us who believes the messaging given to them and set ourselves free to try anything we desire. We need to claim ownership of our health and believe that food and lifestyle choices might be the very best medicine in the world for us. Think about how different your future might look from your past if you are willing to skip past the track you have on repeat in your head and move forward to dance to a brandnew song.

tallahassee woman | 52 | october • november 2019

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tallahassee woman | 53 | october • november 2019


Self-Care in 5 Minutes

best self-care can be simple and even free. One of the most invigorating and often overlooked activities of self-care is child’s play. Reflect on your younger self. What games did you enjoy? What adventures did you create in your imagination? Give yourself permission to shed the layers of posturing and “adulting.” Trust your inner child to lead the way to invigorating self-care.

Self-care is not… A hair appointment. A nail appointment. A massage appointment. Or a facial.


Daily self-care brings what’s important into focus. Imagine the one-inch white margin around a typed document. This margin provides a clean, vacant border on every page. The stark contrast of black type on a white field directs our eyes towards what is most important: the words on the document. Self-care is the white margin that brings the details of our lives into focus. When we intentionally create space for self-care, we create room to breathe and be inspired. We can reflect on areas where we have improved, savor moments with loved ones, or even seal off a productive day with a smile. When practiced intentionally, self-care gives us space to transition from doing to being.


just five minutes... Emotional and mental self-care: create a forgiveness list (even including yourself), journal, take your imagination on a vacation. Occupational self-care: affirm your strengths and say them out loud, make a list of potential business/career mentors to check in with, review your five- or ten-year plan. Physical self-care: practice office yoga, engage in mindful eating, get up and dance to a throwback tune! Social self-care: learn about and explore your “Love Language,” write a note of gratitude to someone and send it. Intellectual self-care: get lost in your favorite novel, paint in an adult or children's coloring book, listen to instrumental music, make progress on a puzzle or craft. Spirtual self-care: take a walk outside (nature therapy), practice deep breathing, meditate, listen to inspiring messages or Scriptures.

Dr. Asha Fields Brewer is a “Creator of Healthy Conversations.” She is the author of Eat, Drink, Do and the

ould you wait until evening to drink all eight glasses of water for the day? Or until Saturday to get in the recommended 150 minutes of moderate physical activity for the week?1 Then why do we limit self-care to the 30and 60-minute pockets of time we manage to find once per month? As ambitious, driven, and compassionate women, we have become masters of “other care.” If we can search for ways to fit everyone and everything into our already saturated schedules, then we can be just as creative and strategic in placing self-care into our daily routines as well.

Most importantly, to enjoy the daily benefits of self-care, we must shift our perspective. We must see self-care as a comma, not a period. Because we’re so accustomed to executing, self-care can be misinterpreted as a halt in productivity. On the contrary, caring for self makes us more productive. It’s the necessary pause to refill the tank before continuing the journey. As such, there is no need in pressuring yourself to make self-care a long, drawn out affair. Genuine self-care can be accomplished in as little as five minutes, or as much as a full day! Length of time is not the determining factor. It’s what you do with the time that makes the difference.

To make self-care part of our daily experience, we must first acknowledge that self-care is not a luxury, it is a requirement. While a relaxing pedicure is a favored activity after a stressful week, it is not feasible to head to the salon every day. The

As we enter the latter part of the year, it can be challenging to avoid weariness and fatigue. Let self-care be a daily guide to a more inspired and rejuvenated you. Try these simple ideas for practicing self-care in

much anticipated Winter release Overflow. As owner of The

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Most importantly, to enjoy the daily benefits of self-care, we must shift our perspective. We must see self-care as a comma, not a period.


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tallahassee woman | 55 | october • november 2019

Food Food FOD FOOD

The Dish

tallahassee woman | 56 | october • november 2019



Recipes contributed by Chef Shac


t’s hard not to hear that the holidays are upon us and conjure up images of all the tasty sweets, dishes, and appetizers that mark the ending of the year. With that in mind, if you were looking for permission or a sign that it’s okay to let loose and go big for the festivities, look no further. And if you’re in search of the perfect recipe to bring to your Thanksgiving table or holiday gathering, Chef Shac has got you covered with yummy recipes that not only will garner you admirers and catapult you into the Foodie Hall of Fame, but just might make the holidays that much sweeter as you spend time with those you love surrounding by good food and good people.

2 heads cauliflower, cut into florets 3 T butter 4 cloves garlic, minced 3 T all-purpose flour 2 c. milk 2t Dijon mustard 4 oz cream cheese, softened 1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar, divided Salt and pepper to taste 1/4 t garlic powder 1/4 t onion powder 1/4 t smoked paprika Pinch of nutmeg 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled 1/3 c. sliced green onions


1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large pot of boiling, salty water place cauliflower, blanch cauliflower, 3 minutes. Drain cauliflower and place in ice water to stop cooking. 2. In a large sauté pan melt butter.

Add garlic, then flour and stir until golden, add warm milk and bring to a simmer, add cream cheese, Dijon mustard, and mix. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup cheese until melted, then mix in spices and add the cauliflower.

3. In a large baking dish 13×9 Pour in all the cauliflower mix about 1T each cooked bacon and green onions until combined, then top with remaining cheddar, bacon, and green onions. Bacon is optional and this recipe can be vegan. 4. Bake until cauliflower is tender and cheese is melted, about  30 minutes.

Savory Bread Pudding Serves 8

1 loaf crusty french bread 1/4 c melted butter 2 t chopped fresh thyme 2 t chopped fresh rosemary 2 garlic clove, minced 1 can cream of Chicken soup 1/2 c melted butter 1 chopped onion 2 stalks chopped celery 1 chopped green bell pepper 1 chopped red pepper 1/3 c fresh parsley 2c heavy whipping cream 6 large eggs 2 t salt 1 t ground black pepper 1/4 t ground poultry seasoning 1/3 c finely grated Parmesan cheese


1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Butter 13x9 baking dish. Cut bread with crust into 1-inch cubes, place in large bowl. Add butter poultry seasoning and garlic, salt, pepper and coat. Spread bread on baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake until about 15-20 minutes. Place toasted bread in large bowl. 2. Heat butter in large saute pan. Saute onion, garlic, celery, and bell pepper. sauté until soft. Add sautéed vegetables, Parmesan, and fresh herbs to bowl with bread. 3. Mix heavy cream, soup, eggs, salt, pepper and spices in large bowl. Pour mix over bread and vegetables. Pour mix to baking dish. Cover and refrigerate at least a day 4. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake pudding uncovered until set and top is golden brown, 45 mins to 1 hour. Let stand 15 minutes.

tallahassee woman | 57 | october • november 2019


Understanding Childhood Trauma


By Rachel Scharlepp

here is a lot of talk about trauma within the mental health field. Out of curiosity, I googled childhood trauma to understand if the recent focus on trauma extends beyond clinicians. In 0.89 seconds 180 million links were found with these two words! With SAMSHA reporting more than 2/3s of children reporting experiencing a traumatic event prior to age 16, I wonder why so few of these children receive professional help.

Before going into how to spot trauma in children, I want to first be convincing in the importance of identifying trauma and identifying it early. You might be familiar with the ACES Study. Among many other things, the study directly linked childhood trauma to negative physical and emotional issues later in adulthood. Research using brain scans has found significant differences in brain structures, volume, and functioning directly resulting from trauma.

child changed as a result of the experience? and Does your child continue to bring up the experience? Changes can be changes in sleeping and eating patterns; changes in relationships with you, other close adults, and peers; changes in mood and energy level; changes in outlook and hopefulness; changes in anything else that, as a parent, feels different from how your child was prior to the experience. Change means impacted!

The other major question: Does your child continue to bring up the experience? This can also look many different ways. Maybe it shows up in stories, play, artwork, conversation, dreams/nightmares, relational patterns. All of these are attempts to process (make sense) of the experience. These attempts are ways to cope. However, in the wake of trauma children need supportive big people to join in the attempts for real relief. If in doubt, get help!

How do you get help for your child? Child therapists explicitly trained in treating children exposed to trauma Consider for a moment your current functioning can uniquely and effectively support you and your (physical, cognitive, emotional, relational, spiritual). Are child as you heal and grow from experiencing trauma. you struggling in any of these domains? Is it possible, Some credentials to look for in addition to licensure are that childhood adversity impeded you from optimal Registered Play Therapist/Supervisor, Infant Mental functioning? If so, professional help might help you go Health Specialist, Registered Art Therapist, and/or back in time and correct and repair remnants from your certification in a specific trauma intervention. childhood. In working with adults who have experienced childhood trauma find relief and engage in post-traumatic growth, often the comment gets made— I wish I had gotten help as a child. Why aren’t we getting our children help? Were they too young to remember? Will bringing it up make things worse? Do they seem okay? Is it the belief in moving forward without looking back? My experience in working with parents of children exposed to trauma is that it is a mixture of all of these things compounded by a heavy heart about what their child experienced. My hope in writing this piece is to include in the list of why nots above a dominating argument for the why to’s: with the proper therapeutic intervention, your child does not have to live with injury (neurological, emotional, psychosocial, physical) of trauma. With effective treatment, your child can grow from the otherwise devastating trauma they experienced and become stronger in all domains. How will you know if your child has experienced trauma? I advise parents to consider two major questions: Has your tallahassee woman | 58 | october • november 2019

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Profile for Tallahassee Woman Magazine

Tallahassee Woman Magazine October/November 2019  

The October-November issue of Tallahassee Woman Magazine celebrates creative women! TWM takes a closer look at the artful lives of Women Emp...

Tallahassee Woman Magazine October/November 2019  

The October-November issue of Tallahassee Woman Magazine celebrates creative women! TWM takes a closer look at the artful lives of Women Emp...