The Relationships Issue July/Aug 2013

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Health Alert:



Bravo TV’s Married to Medicine Star Gets Real

EASY Sexy Hair The Coolest Tools Ever PAGE 13

The New Chic! July/August 2013 TASTEMAKERMAG.COM

Your favorite Instagrammers in celebrity inspired looks

Tastemaker Contents Dr. Ayden: Burberry Suit (The Men’s Store Bloomingdale’s Lenox); To Boot NY Adam Derrick Brown Oxford (Bloomingdale’s Lenox; call for pricing) Mariah: Mignon evening gown ( $500; owned by Mariah); Jewelry owned by Mariah. Kid garments their own.

37 08 Contributors Page 10 Editor’s Note 12 The A, B, C’s of Beauty Cremes

What you need to know about BB + CC Creme

13 Cool Tools

Get the sexy hair you want with these tools

14 Girls Inc.

I Am Bold Winner ‘Fusion Teen Talk Show’

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16 Health and Millennials

6 things every millennial should know

18 Resolving Conflict

How to strengthen your relationships

20 Loving Yourself

5 stories of personal triumph

23 How to Train Your Trainer Tips on managing your relationship with your personal trainer

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Contents | July/August

25 Mo’s Bows

11-year-old entrepreneur with a mission

27 Summer Stylin’

All the summer essentials you’ll need

29 The New Chic

Instagrammers you need to know

30 Tastemakers Around Town A round-up of the hottest events

34 Cover Story

Bravo TV’s Dr. Ayden and Mariah Huq talk relationships, business and Reality TV

41 Local Authors NFL Cornerback Kyle Arrington; a millennial with a great future ahead!


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Modern day Children books from Atlanta Authors

43 Traveling Solo

How to travel solo and still have fun

45 Asha Patel Designs Up close and personal with jewelry Asha Patel

Kristina Ross Makeup | 678-755-2501 |

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The Chef Rob Experience


Home Decorating Ideas:

How he maintains his Caribbean Imprint in Atlanta

Sprucing up your home for the Summer


11-year-old Moziah Bridges starts a business out of the love of fashion and hires his family.

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#OMG is Social Media Ruining Your Relationship? The Do’s and Don’ts of dating in a digital age


Get Social With Us!

Don’t forget: Comment, pin, tag and tweet us. We love hearing from our readers and followers!


LET ME EXPLAIN! is a great place to stay up to date on your favorite celebrities, lifestyle topics and happenings around Atlatna. We had the pleasure of interviewing Kevin Hart last month about his new stand-up comedy “Let Me Explain”, be sure to check out what he had to say here.

Re-Pin Refreshing Drink Recipes

Pin until your heart is content with over 80 recipes for you to try at home! Plus don’t miss our roundup of fashion, beauty, lifestyle and entertainment boards at

Limoncello & Prosecco cooler w/raspberry cubes photographed by Chanda Scott for Tastemaker Magazine



#TheMillennial We’re preparing to bring a cool new twitter chat series to you soon called #themillennial. Since our publication is for millennials by millennials we wanted to not only engage with you but with the brands that we frequent as consumers. It’s our chance to say things the way we want!

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INSTAGRAM We love to style stalk, break entertaainment news, and or give you a reason to take up crafting as a hobby using pictures! Follow for inspiration.




Tiffini Gatlin @theatlgo2girl


Andrea Janise @atlfoodwriter


Monica L. Ponder @freelollipops

Pitch Us: Contact Us: 404-844-8296 8 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

CONTRIBUTORS Ruksana Hussain

TaĂŠ Chivon

Carmen Blakely

Mecia Boone

Bernetta Knighten

Chanda Scott




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HR Director



Third Time Is The Charm!

The value of a relationship is in direct proportion to the time that you invest in the relationship. – Brian Tracy

Is the third time really the charm? I’m not sure but as you may know i’ve shared my excitement with welcoming my third child, a rambucuous baby boy, into the family and with only five weeks remaining, to say i’m ready would be an understatement. I’m like so many of you—trying to figure this thing called life out, while juggling various relationships. Marriage, motherhood, being a leader, friend... it all gets a bit overwhelming at times. I thought this would be a great time to explore relationships and the dynamics that play a part in how succussful or sometimes unsuccessful our relationships can turn out. Learning how others cope with their relationships sometimes can help to begin the journey of coping with your own relationship(s). Dr. Ayden Huq and Mariah Huq are the newest stars of Bravo TV’s newest reality show “Married to Medicine”, and they shed light on the cultural differences in their marriage (page 92). With warmer temperatures still amongst us, looking and feeling 10 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

good is a must, so learning how to have the best relationship with your trainer is important and we give you great tips to help you get started (page 52). We love to help you look and feel your best, and there is plenty in this issue that you’ll love. Be sure to check our editor picks for cool tools (page 13) and everything you’ll need to look your best for the remainder of the summer (page 16). Oh, I almost forgot...Tastemaker Magazine turned two at the end of June. I can’t believe how time has gone by so quickly! We’ve interviewd amazing people along our way and can hardly wait to see where the next two years take us. Here’s to helping us discover our best and to amazing growth. Enjoy!

Tiffini Gatlin

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[ Beauty Buys ]


Tinted Moisturizer eliminates the need to put on a foundation after skin care and almost always includes sun protection of at least 20.

BB Creams have their orgins in Asia. Blemish Balms or Beauty Balms were formulated to be your serum (treatment), foundation, primer, moisturizer, and sun protection.

Foundation is generally meant to cover and conceal to give an overall appearance of flawless skin.

The complexion category has become riddled with so many letters (read: BB and CC creams), formulations and other such things that it takes research and prayer to figure out which one may be right for you. We’ve decided to take the guess work out of it all. Let’s discuss some FAQs, shall we ? ( BY CARMEN BLAKELY)

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‘CC’ or color correcting creams often contain vitamin C, synonomous with brightening and tighening. Hydrates, primes, covers and protects.

[ Beauty Buys ]

Cool Tools Get the sexy hair you want with our pick of the best tools to tame your mane! BY TIFFINI GATLIN

Azure Edge Stick The perfect tool to keep those edges behaving is the Azure original edge stick. The edge stick’s ceramic and tourmaline coated barrel keeps you from burning your skin when attacking the root, nape or baby hair. 79.99;

Goody QUICKSTYLE Goody’s QUICKSTYLE super absorbent microfiber bristled brush takes you from wet to beautifully styled in minutes! It’s like a towel and brush in 1! How fun is that? Available at most drugstores, Target or Wal-mart.


Refresh and shape your curls with a hydration tool that ‘s great for the girl or guy on the go! We love how the tool applies steam to dry hair without the sopping wet after effect! $69.95;

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‘I AM BOLD’ WINNER Fusion Teen Talk Show Host: Jasmine Akakpo and Somalia Ra-Min Website: Location: Atlanta, GA

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Why are you bold? Fusion Teen Talk Show is BOLD because we address the negative habits and misconceptions of the teenage life that the world tends to ignore. It is our mission to bridge the gap and open the lines of communication between teens and adults.

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[Health | Millennials & Health]

6 Ways Millennials Can Form Relationships With Their Doctor -By Monica Lindsey Ponder

The health care landscape in this country has made a tremendous shift in the last 2 years. Health care reform has brought with it many changes that will impact all of us: children under 19 can no longer be denied insurance coverage because of preexisting conditions, adult children may remain on their parent’s medical plan until they turn 26, insurance plans cannot cancel coverage if you become sick and, most importantly, Medicaid expansion in 2014 will provide everyone access to primary health care. While there is much focus on primary care, there hasn’t really been a good explanation about why health care matters – particularly when you are not sick or if you think that you don’t need it right now. The issue, particularly with Millennials, is that people aren’t as concerned with their health until something happens. The insurance industry 16 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

has termed 18- to 29-year-olds as the young invincibles. Although appearing youthful and robust, a third of 18- to 29-year-olds are cigarette smokers, a quarter are obese, as the rates among young adults have tripled in the past three decades, and nearly two-thirds of young adults reported not having regular leisure-time physical activity. While sexually transmitted diseases affect individuals of all ages, STDs take a particularly heavy toll on young people. CDC estimates that youth ages 15-24 make up just over one-quarter of the sexually active population, but account for half of the 20 million new sexually transmitted infections that occur in the U.S. each year. One solution to making health a priority is to build a proactive relationship with your health care provider (doctor, nurse, physician assistant, pharmacist, dentist etc.) that will help

• Take notes – As you talk with your doctor, feel free to take notes of the conversation so that you can review what was discussed when you leave the office. This information may help with follow-up questions or to even avoid any issues post-appointment.

“ a proactive relationship with your health care provider.” you stay accountable and conscious of your preventative health care needs. Here are some quick tips for managing this relationship:

• Ask about lifestyle changes you can make – Many health issues can be prevented or improved with lifestyle modifications (e.g. chronic issues like high blood pressure or obesity, and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)). Ask your doctor what you can do to stay healthy and to live a life of wellness. If you are managing a health issue, ask your doctor what lifestyle modifications are available to help you get better.

• Schedule annual exams and check-ups – Routine and prescheduled appointments are the best way to stay on top of any changes in your body from year to year. Make it a point to see members of your health care team regularly and to be proactive about your health. • Communicate between visits – Your doctor is • Make a list of your concerns and prepare an agenda – Begin to your doctor and it is ok to make a list of questions that you have for the doctor in advance reach out to him/her when of your scheduled appointment. Many doctors are pressed for you have a question or time with patient visits, so the more prepared you are for your update about your health interaction, the more likely you both are to have as productive an care. Many offices have appointment possible. patient navigators or nurses that are there to answer • Spare no details – The best thing about talking to your health questions from patients care provider is that full, no filter honesty only helps to make the via phone and emergency engagement experience better. Please be candid with your doctor appointments. Also, about any pain, ailments, oddities, feelings you’ve experienced, encourage your pharmacist, medications you have taken, or habits that may impact your doctor, nutritionist, etc. to current issues. There is no reason to feel ashamed when speaking work together as a team in with your health care provider. They are there to help you. supporting your care and 17 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013



s conflict a good or bad entity of life? Depending on how conflict is handled can determine the outcome but one thing that is certain is that conflict is a normal part of any healthy relationship. Conflict arises from both the smallest of disagreements to significant life-altering discussions. It occurs whenever people have a difference over their values, motivations, perceptions, ideas or desires. When conflict is mismanaged it can cause great harm to a relationship, but when handled in a respectful, positive way, conflict provides an opportunity to strengthen the bond between two or more people. This article shares effective strategies for resolving conflict in friendships, professional, and intimate relationships. –BY PATRICIA RUSSELL M.ED AND SHEVON D. COLES Conflict in our relationships with friends: It is important to practice assertive communication to resolve conflict. Assertive communication is clearly and respectfully communicating your needs and feelings. Most people have never learned to communicate effectively in relationships. Individuals may be passive and not advocate for themselves, aggressive and too demanding over others, or passive aggressive and use subtle sabotage to get even. Assertive communication helps to create a bond in any relationship, especially friendships. In the process, assertive individuals will create a respectful environment for others to grow and mature. Tips for practicing assertiveness are: • Show confidence, look the person in the eyes and relax. • When in a discussion, don’t forget to listen for understanding and ask questions, it’s important to understand the other person’s feelings. • Use “I” messages: For example, use the phrases like, “I feel (your feelings) when you (their behaviors)” • Try to think win-win: look for a compromise or a way for you both to get your needs met.

[Health| Relationships ]

Conflict in intimate relationships: In intimate relationships, a degree of conflict is inevitable. Because the heart is involved, conflict in this relationship type can be most damaging to the soul. It is easy for emotions to take precedence over thinking clearly. So in reaching a solution, keep this in mind: • Address the issue at hand and don’t rehash old conflict; stick to the point • Speak lovingly and use ‘feel’ statements instead of accusatory attacks • Listen to your loved one and don’t interrupt with kick-back statements • State what you need to move forward and be willing to give the same thing to your loved one

Conflict in our work environment: In the work environment, it’s important to keep things professional even if your colleagues do not. Document all pertinent issues in case the conflict escalates and you need to account for actual incidents. Remember to address the conflict head on and not sweep issues under the rug. In doing so, you can ensure that tension and resentment do not become part of your work environment. With these things in mind, handle the conflict in this manner: • Promptly state your concerns in a non-threatening, yet assertive tone • Make reference to how the conflict made you ‘feel’ instead of attacking the person’s character • Be willing to listen and compromise so that a ‘win-win’ agreement can be reached • Once a resolution is reached, let it go and move on

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Patricia Russell, M.Ed. is a School Counselor residing in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Shevon Coles is currently pursuing her masters degree in Family and Marriage Therapy.

[Health | Transformations ]

Getting Back To

By Monica L. Ponder and Bernetta Knighten

Loving You

Empowering stories of people who made the decision to love themselves and make a life change.

Jennifer Dyson, 33 Civic/Community Service Worker, Albany, GA Caner Survivor and Advocate, Rediagnosed with Cancer in Spring 2013 Define what it means to love yourself. A freedom to express herself in all ways and not worrying about people’s judgement. It means to love yourself and your imperfections. Tell us about your journey. On February 6, 2008, I was diagnosed with Lymphoblastic lymphoma while serving as a Peace Corp volunteer in Zambia, South Africa. I was on preventative maintenance for 2 years, which included a tablet form of chemotherapy and routine monitoring and tests. I was in remission for 5 years before being rediagnosed on March 19, 2013. Advice to others: Have a light at the end of the tunnel that you are working towards so that you are not caught up in the darkness. Don’t get stuck in the moment and get down or depressed. Plan for the future so that you don’t get stuck. That just isn’t an option for me.

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Loving Yourself

< Aletha Hill, Age 31 Business Analyst/IT Professional, Atlanta, GA Lost 50 pounds through committed personal fitness Define what it means to love yourself. Know yourself and be willing to accept that you are not perfect. Embrace who you are and not allow anyone to dictate that. What were you unhappy about with yourself? I was fine with myself but my size was always an issue. I have always been pretty confident, but I also dreamed of being smaller. Tell us why you decided to make a change. Weight loss has always been a goal for me. I went about it through different ways over the years, but I never committed to a lifestyle. I did not want to go into my30th year at a certain size and I wanted to push myself. How has this change impacted those closest to you? My weight loss has motivated people in my life. I have friends that expressed that they were motivated to work out when they saw that I was losing weight. I did not realize how heavy I was until I looked at old photos. My mother compliments me all the time. My boyfriend and I push each other. The funny thing is the reaction from the friends who were always smaller than me. They have been inspired.

LaTosha Allen, Age 36 > Social Worker, Anniston, Alabama Motivated by family health history to lose weight Tell us why you decided to make a change. I literally decided one day to start eating right. I still have slipups, but I’m on the RIGHT TRACK. I also want to be a role model for my daughter so that she will make healthier decisions for her life as well. I also want to be around for her when she’s older. When was your turning point? I refused to go up a size in my clothes. I refused to buy a bigger size! I stopped eating out. That was the first step. I started eating more veggies and fruits. I started thinking about what I was putting in my mouth. I also stopped drinking my calories. Just those simple things made big differences to me. What is your proudest accomplishment as a result of this change? I’ve lost 20/25 pounds and kept it off. As the pounds came off, I was really mesmerized. I couldn’t believe it was happening with just changing my eating habits. I’m also happy that I’ve gotten my daughter to eat more vegetables and fruits. We no longer buy soda or juices, we only buywater and gatorade (for her sports). We are both on the right track to being more healthy. I have been cooking more than I’ve ever cooked before. Life is just good.

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[Health | Transformations ] Richard Quarterone, Age 37 > Public Relations expert residing in Atlanta, GA Lost 75 pounds through dietary modifications Define what it means to love yourself. It starts with knowing and accepting yourself and always trying to improve who you are without changing your core. Knowing that you are in control of that aspect of your life and understanding how to do that is empowering.

Loving Yourself

What were you unhappy about with yourself? I felt awkward. First, I felt physically awkward and then I began to feel mentally awkward. I started studying patterns of eating and physical behavior and the mental health benefits. I learned that I am a compulsive eater and had control over what I placed in to my body. Tell us why you decided to make a change. I have been overweight or obese for the majority of my life. Others judgment doesn’t affect me - I am not motivated by guilt. Although I know I have a family history of diabetes, heart disease, and prostate cancer, those were not direct motivators The change came more by a self-realization of how my clothes started fitting and my lack of ability to do physical activity with my two kids. Advice to others: Understand your relationship with food and food in general. < Janis Middleton, 33 Social Content Manager, Ellenwood, Georgia Lost 124 pounds through dietary modifications Define what it means to love yourself. Being comfortable with who you are, changing the things you can and accepting those things you can’t change. It’s ultimately being comfortable with who you are. We all have to get there somehow. What were you unhappy about with yourself? I was unhappy with my weight - how I carried it and the way the clothes fit. I didn’t feel good on the outside so I didn’t feel good on the inside. Tell us why you decided to make a change. In 2009 I got sick (age 29) and had a pulmonary embolism. The blot clot formed in my legs and went to my lungs. It really hit me when I had to give myself blood thinner shots! I knew I had to make change. I thought I was too young for that. It was depressing. I moved back to Atlanta from North Carolina in February 2010 and my journey began.

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When was your turning point? I started researching how to eat and clean eating was my goal. I started walking 3x a week and the first 8-9 months I had no cheat days for fear of relapsing. I lost 75-85 pounds then hit a plateau for 7-8 months. Gymnetics here in Atlanta helped me with the last 45-50 pounds.

Managing Your Relationship With Your Personal Trainer


By Monica Lindsey Ponder| Photos Courtesy of T. Morrison Agency

arlier this year, I finally gave in to the nagging, guilt-ridden burden I carried with me daily – I am a health writer that hates working out. Before you judge me, please know that I have taken a surprising turn in the right direction. I recently joined a gym and have fallen in unexpected love with group fitness, particularly Zumba. There is something about the combination of high-impact cardio, dance, and the camaraderie of other regulars that just forms the right combination for me. I have learned that I am a group fitness gal – or nothing else - I have little self-motivation to go hard on a treadmill alone. I am the type of person that needs the motivation and support of others, especially peers to get me through a workout. I am sure that many search for a similar combination when identifying he right workout combination – Should you join a gym? workout in your neighborhood? Do group fitness, work out alone or employ the expertise of a personal trainer? For those interested in working with personal trainers, success is often related to the quality of one’s relationship with their trainer. We recently sat down with an Atlantabased personal trainer, Maxim Nazaire, for his tips and advice.


Personal trainers can help you maximize your time in the gym, decrease the risk of doing an exercise wrong and hurting yourself, and shortening the amount of time it would take to reach your goals. 23 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013


[Health| Managing Relationships Monica: Thank you so much for sharing your time with Tastemaker Magazine! You have been a personal trainer for many years and even own your own company, so please tell us your perspectives on this. When should a person use a personal trainer? Why would someone choose that path versus managing their weight loss or exercise program themselves?

Maxim: A person should go to a personal trainer to learn how to perform exercises correctly to achieve their wellness goals, to receive encouragement and motivation while pursuing their wellness goals, to be a valuable resource of information that will lead you to healthier living, and when you are looking for someone to lead you on your wellness journey Monica: What should a person expect when they begin working with a trainer? Should they expect advice regarding their diet as well as physical exercise?

nutritional knowledge, however in some states, it is illegal for a trainer to provide you with an exact meal plan without the proper certification and qualifications.

has superior problem solving skills. You want your trainer to be inspiring and uplifting, and finally, you want a trainer who is courageous enough to hold you accountable to your goals. Monica: What should someone expect to Be sure to ask for references as well as pay for personal training services (6-week testimonials. period)? Please provide a price range and generally what that should include. Monica: What should a person do if the training session is too intense - If they are not motivated to finish the program or if they fall off track of their goals during the program?

Maxim: The price range for a good trainer can start at $50 per hour and can escalate higher than $150 per hour. The price range is based on a number of factors including the part of the country that you live in, qualifications of the trainer, his/her experience, whether they are traveling to you or you are visiting them, and whether they are a gym employee or an independent business owner. Monica: What should a person look for in a personal trainer?

Maxim: You should look for a trainer that Maxim: One of the expectations that you has experience in helping people with should have for a Trainer is someone who your type of goals. For example, a person is certified in Personal Training as well who wants to lose weight should work as someone who is CPR and First Aid with a trainer who has a successful track certified. This is a minimum requirement record with working with individuals that all trainers should have. Any Trainer with weight loss goals. A professional that you decide to work with should be athlete needs to work with a trainer who someone who knows the lifestyle, speaks works with similar type clients in the the lifestyles and looks the part as well. athletic arena. You want to look for a You should expect a goal setting meeting trainer who is a good teacher, someone prior to working with them. You can who is a great listener, and someone who expect your trainer to have some

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Maxim: If you find that the workout program is too intense it is very important that you have a discussion with your trainer before the workout or after the workout. It can be a challenge for trainers sometime to determine a legitimate complaint from a whining participant. Once you communicate to your trainer that the workout is too hard, it is up to the trainer to put you in a position to succeed. The trainer’s job is to create a workout program and an environment where they challenge you to push past your comfort zone, but not too far where you feel discouraged, or to the point when the workouts are doing more bad than good.

Tips for relationship success with your personal trainer:

• Communication is key. • Honesty is the best policy. • Be responsible and accountable. • Be personal.

[Style | Young Entrepreneur]

Mo Know’s Bows! Tastemaker Moziah Bridges turns his love for style into a booming business. —Tiffini Gatlin It’s not often that you’ll find an 11-year-old who puts off riding his bike to take a business meeting, but Moziah Bridges was gracious enough to do that just for me. Birthed out of the love for fashion and his inability to find bow-ties that he liked, Bridges started learning how to sew at 9-years-old from his seamstress gradmother and began to take excess materials to design custom made bow-ties that are funky and cool, for other kids his age. Now the Memphis, TN native is commanding the attention of celebrities like Steve Harvey, who want to know how to get their hands on Mo’s Bows. Today Bridges designs are in high demand. “Oh my gosh it’s crazy! it’s like 10-20 orders per week.” Bridges keeps a level head and understands that his education comes first. “I have a schedule. I go to school, come home to do my homework, ride my bike and then design bow-ties.” Bridges says when he first started designing he would take 45 minutes to complete an order now he can finish in 30 minutes. Bridges runs his production out of his mother’s dining room and uses the assistance of his family to ensure his schedule remains flexible to enjoy his childhood. As far as the future. Mo plans on attending Parsons School of Design in New York City and adding blazers as well as vintage clothing for men to his Etsy store. So, when you see this young entrepreneur carrying around his vintage suitcase, you know he’s in business mode on his way to sell custom made bow-ties!

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Shop Mo’s Bo’s on Etsy by clicking here

B.FAB Be Fabulous. Be Unique. Be You. The 2nd Annual Awards Show for Bloggers in Fashion + Beauty

March 28-30, 20 Atlanta • GA

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Style| Hot Summer Essentials Artisan Cologne by John Varvatos, $62-82, or select Bloomingdales

Ray-Ban Matte folding Wayfarer Sunglasses, $160,

The Sunglasses

The Scent

TopShop Round Cat-Eye Sunglasses, $32,

Stella Summer Parfum by Stella McCartney, $62,

Vintage Cazal Inspired Frames, $50,

Summer Stylin’

By—Taé Chivon

Marilyn one-piece, $95,

H&M Swim, $31, Select H&M stores, call 855.4666.7467

Liese Brown NYLA Sandal, $84, soleatlanta. com call 404.523.1777

Aldo Men’s CEOL Bald Sandals, $100, Aldo Lenox Square Mall or call 404.814.1595

Steve Madden ‘Sparta’, $90, Zara Floral Swim Short, $26, 27 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

The Sandals

The Swimwear

Summer is the time for BBQ’s, trips to the beach, and creating lasting memories with family and friends! These buys are sure to keep you stylish during the hot summer months.

Kate Spade Saturday Vinyl Beach Tote, $85,

Style| Summer Buys

The Style Banago Green Pintados Tote, $88, swankatlanta. com or call 404.231.4114

TopShop Petite Crotchet paysuit, $50,

The Bag Fab’rik Lace Contrst Dress, $58, fabrikstyle. com or call 404.816-6221

Zara Men’s Combination Weekend Bag, $60,

Williamsburg Garment Men’s ‘Hope Street’ Denim, $125,

The Hat Ben Sherman Staw Trilby Hat, $68,

Jacks Wills Payton Straw Hat, $40,

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The Beats

Beats by Dre. Neon Collection, $250, Target stores &

Frends “Taylor” Headphones, $200,

On Instagram Straight Flexin’ You don’t have to be a model to strut your stuff. In a new feature called “On Instagram Straight Flexin’, we’re seeking the the most stylish Instagrammers showing off their version of some of our favorite celebrity looks. We consider them ‘The New Chic !” —By Taé Chivon

Polka Dots + White Shoes Solange Knowles was spotted visiting The David Letterman show wearing a cute polka dot 2013 Moschino dress with sexy ankle t-strap white pumps. Instaglammer @islandchic77 knew she had to re-create the look her way with a dress from eShakti, shoes from Forever21 and a lip that popped using MAC’s “So Chaud”. Can’t get enough of this island cutie? Be sure to add her to your list of fashion bloggers to follow and get the 411 on how she put her Solange inspired look together at 29 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Tastemakers Around Town


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Tastemakers Around Town


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Tastemakers Around Town


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Arrington gives credit to his parents for his ability to transition from College into professional sports and enter a loving relationship with his wife. He says watching his parents, helped him to develop the very principles that he lives by today. One thing Arrington jokingly admits to is not getting the athletic gene from his dad. “I don’t mean this in a disrespectful way but my dad isn’t very athletic. I do however fondly remember throwing the football around with my dad, but my mother and her side of the family is where I believe I obtained my athletic ability [lol]. When Arrignton is not on the field you can probably find him at home or giving back to the community. A self-described home body Arrington says he enjoys spending time with his family and watching movies and rarely does the club scene. “My wife always ask if I have someone I can go hang out with [lol]. I’m just an esay going,

NFL Cornerback Kyle Arrington Makes a Touchdown Off the Field By Tiffini Gatlin

26-year-old Kyle Arrington is a football cornerback for the New England Patriots, but what’s more impressive than his baller status is his love for his family. Arrington has been just as busy off the field as he generally is on the field. Last year, Arrington married his school-mate VaShonda Murphy and became a first-time dad when he and his wife welcomed their son Kyle Chandler Arrington Jr earlier this year. Ballers get a bad wrap, especially as millennials with deep pockets left to squander their money on expensive cars, overly sized mansions and wild outlandish parties in some of the countries hottest clubs. However Arrington sets the recond straight that although he and his wife enjoy nice things they are frugal and communicate about their finances. “This game is not forever so one thing I’ve always said is when I’m done playing this game, I don’t want to have nothing to show for it, so I save.”

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like to have fun type of guy. My wife would say I’m too silly and not serious enough, but I just like to be all jokes and giggles.” Arrington is also the push behind The One Fund Boston Campaign to help the families of the Boston Marathon bombing victims. Although Arrington is still getting acclimated in his career, he’s always prepared for the next move. “I will stick to what I know. I know movies, I know football, so broadcast or being an analyst would fit perfectly for me. Ultimately I would love to be on the silver screen.” Whether on the silver screen or the plasma screen he’s a millennial to watch. Follow Kyle on Twitter at @Arrington24_7

Dr. Ayden: Scott James Blazer ($295; The Men’s store Bloomingdale’s Lenox); Burberry White collared button down shirt ($225; Bloomingdale’s Lenox) Mariah: Vince Camuto Tangerine Suit ($229; Bloomingdale’s Lenox); Cayetano Legacy Collection Legacy Necklace (visit 34 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

The Incredible

[Cover Story ]


The moment Mariah Huq, the newest reality star on Bravo TV’s Married to Medicine, answered the door of her Georgia estate, I expected her vivacious on-tv personality to proceed her with a whole lot of finger snapping and overly animated “Yes Honey’s”, but instead her greeting was somewhat meek and her poised demeanor was reflective of what one’s opionon of a distinquished Doctor’s wife would be. As I was made comfortable on a chaise lounge surrounded by oversized pillows in an open great room overlooking a massive yet calming river that backed up to some of her other prominent neighbors like rapper T.I., Dr. Ayden Huq made his entrance. Although he looked as if he worked a double shift in the E.R. he was welcoming and even gave a few tips to get me through the next few months of my pregnancy. The couple seemed too distinguished to have been caught in the drama that seems to plauge relaity tv. So, how did a couple who seemingly had a great life prior to practiclly dishing about their entire lives, want to live out their success, failures and glamourous social- life for millions of people to judge? Their answers may surprise you.


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Tastemaker: Thank you for allowing us in your home to talk to you. I want to jump right into our discussion and I’m really intrigued on how the dynamics of your relationship work (Dr. Ayden with you being of Indian culture and Mariah you being of AfricanAmerican culture) how do you blend the two without compromising your beliefs? Dr. Ayden: You can’t really explain how cultural acceptance is going to be, because no matter what no one is 100%. It was hard. My parents are first generation immigrants, so culture is very important to them and changing their views is difficult, but at the same time we did grow up here. That being said, it was more important that they knew we loved each other and no matter how much [they] said or didn’t say that we were going to be bonded together because that’s what we wanted. Although, my dad doesn’t say much, I could sense from him that although he may not totally agree, he can see how much I love my wife and that we are happy. Tastemaker: That brings up a good point. Mariah, we see you on the show trying to conform to your husband’s culture wearing the Saree’s and everything...was that your idea? Mariah: You know honestly, I don’t feel as though I had to conform as much because the reason we were first attracted to one another was because we had

the same morals and values. We come from two different places. He grew up in Bangladesh (the worst country in the world) I grew up in Chattanooga Tennessee (in an indigent population) so we had the same struggles. We had families that worked really hard and believed in education, believed in God and wanted their children to do bigger and better things. So that alone was our foundation. No matter if I wear Indian clothes, I’m still going to be me. Ayden has never, ever asked me to wear a Saree...I love them. I like glamour and high fashion and it was beautiful to me. I want my husband to be happy and if he is used to eating Indian food, I wanted to be the one putting a smile on his face, so we had to learn to morph our cultures.

“You can’t really explain how cultural acceptance is going to be, because no matter what no one is 100%.”

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Dr. Ayden: That’s what I admire most about Mariah. I didn’t have to tell her or encourage her to embrace my culture. It goes the same way for me too. Mariah: You know our birthday’s are three days apart? We met at Justin’ P. Diddy’s restaurant here in Atlanta. Tastemakermaker: So when you met Dr. Huq, he was in residency? Mariah: No, no, we met long before he was in residency. We actually met when he was doing a externship at Duke University but he was visiting friends here in Atlanta.Then we went through six years of residency together. I held down the fort while he was in school. I did very well in medical sales. I made more [money] than most doctors made and I worked really hard. [He] did six consecutive years of residency... that’s hard. You don’t really get paid tons, so we’ve alwaays worked together as a team. Tastemaker: One thing I admire about you Dr. Ayden was how you stepped up to the plate and took Mariah’s daughter Lauren in as your own by adopting her. Why did you do that? Dr. Ayden: To tell you the truth I never really thought about it. For me, I loved her from the very beginning. It’s always been us. I’ve changed Lauren’s diapers, I was there for her first words, I taught her how to walk,

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Catherine Malandrino jumpsuit ($395; Mariah’s Own Wardrobe); Jewelry and Shoes owned by Mariah.

so I’ve never thought of Lauren as a step-child. Mariah: Lauren was probably 13-months when Ayden officially adopted her. We never really talked about it beyond the adoption because being a family was all we knew anyway. We tried to begin to introduce the conversation, but I guess we should have had the conversation sooner, based on what happened on the show, but we were going according to her speed not ours. Tastemaker: I’m sure Lauren doesn’t look at Dr. Ayden any differently, but knowing is always better than not knowing and someone else telling you a “secret” about your dad. So I really admire you Dr. Ayden for taking that initiative. Dr. Ayden: Thank You Tastemaker: What do you all think about the renewing of vows? You know Mariah and Nick Cannon do a renewal of vows every year. Are you all into that? Mariah: Yeah I heard that on the radio! You know I think it depends. We are planning on renewing our vows as well. I think sometimes you have to rejuvenate, revive and reassess. Ayden and I have always had a great relationship, it’s always been consistent. It’s a beautiful thing, but marriage is hard. When you hit a 5year, 7year or heck a 3year mark, you really have to honor it. I also think when you have children it’s really important so they understand your unity. Honestly, it’s two-fold for us. When we first got married our families were somewhat divided. It took really truly did. So, now that our families have morphed into one, I think it’s important for us to do something to bring everyone together. So I commend Mariah and Nick--I love it!

Mariah: I have so much respect for my mom. To me my mom is a superwoman. Eventhough we lived in a low income area, we didn’t know. She created an environment that was fabulous, we had the best of everything. She wanted us to be surrounded by nice things to remind us that if you work hard you can do this and she’s always worked hard. She always pushed education and pushed us to be our best. I have the upmost respect for her because her ethics have had a domino effect. I teach the same principles to my kids. She’s funny about her grandkids... and Ayden too! She can be a bit abrasive in her approach, but it’s almost like you have to expect that with mothers. Ayden’s mom is like that. She may speak a different language, but she likes things her way. She’s head strong and when she wants something done it’s going to be her way.

Tastemaker: Would it be fair to say Dr. Ayden that some of those same strong qualities your mom has are what Tastemaker: Mariah what is your relationship you loved about Mariah? like with your mother? Dr. Ayden: Yes! There is no doubt about it! Smart, intelligent, hard working. 38 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Mariah: Yes! He liked that I was smart, sexy, sophisticated, motherly and I can cook [laugh]! Tastemaker: So Dr. Ayden, do you cook? Dr. Ayden: Me cook? First of all me and the kitchen don’t get along. [laugh] Mariah: He can make the best peanut butter and jelly and the best blueberry pancakes [laugh] that’s his two dishes [laugh]. Dr. Ayden: Mariah loves to cook and entertain. She makes her Indian Soul food and she cooks great! Tastemaker: Mariah, I love how you merge words together to become one [laugh]. Mariah: You know what, that’s what our life has always been and that is a lot of the reason why I wanted to do the show. I felt like we have friends from all different walks of life and they all feel comfortable here. We promote love and unity and that’s one of the things I hated about the fight on the show. It looked as though I was being devious when in fact I wasn’t. I brought everyone together! They were all my friends on different levels, so I love bringing people together from all different backgrounds. Tastemaker: I do want to talk about the show and how you got started. I know it took you four years to get the show picked up and you were mentored by some powerful men like Stan Lathan and Russell Simmons, what advice did they give you? Mariah: I’m going to tell you the most important piece of advice that was given to me. Initially, I had a few different people on the show and I wasn’t on the show-- I really just wanted to produce. I did a little piece at the end of the initial sizzle reel, but they told me you are the show! They said you need to be in this show, this is your life so why wouldn’t you be in it. So that was the biggest piece initially. They also said my sizzle...needed more sizzle. They loved the fact that we were going into the personal lives of doctors, because most people don’t know anything about their doctor past the white lab coat. 39 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Scotch Orange Button Down Shirt ( $109; Bloomingdale’s Lenox); Seven For All Mankind White Denim Jeans ( $178; Bloomingdale’s Lenox)

Tastemaker: For those interested in making it in the reality world, what are five components you would say every sizzle reel needs--before pitching? Mariah: The first thing is strong characters. I think you need people with very colorful personalities that when you see them they have that “it” factor. You need strong content. You need people with busy fulfilling lives. Comedy. Everyone likes to laugh, so having people that are real and can share those moments in a comedic way. You need conflict. Conflict doesn’t mean fighting. It may just mean morphing all of your characters together to see how all get along..but in the end conflict makes for good television. Lastly, I’d say you have to have charisma about your own project. People believe when you believe. If you are passionate about your project then other people will be too. I knew I could sell this show, because I lived the life...if nothing else I knew how to sell. Tastemaker: Speaking of conflict, we’ve seen quite a bit of conflict on Married to Medicine. How would you describe your friendship with the other ladies on the show? Mariah: Jackie doesn’t drink wine so we were coffee friends. Toya and I we’re the type of friends that took our kids on play dates. Quad and I are fun friends. Simone and I were history friends--she delivered my babies. Kari and I did more charity events together so we were social friends. So you have those different levels of friendships. Tastemaker: I’m glad you broke that down, because I’m curious in knowing what your definition of friendship is, because it seems like you attach the word friend to people you meet easily. Mariah: For me friendship is about love, loyalty and honesty. Married to Medicine has taught me a really valuable lesson about using the word friend too loosely. I think experiences will show you who your friends are. When you go through something that can be disheartening or life changing you’ll see who is there by your side. 40 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Tastemaker: For you Dr. Ayden, how have you dealt with friends in business. How have those relationships changed professionally since the show? Dr. Ayden: Professionally it hasn’t. When you have to do your just do it. Outside of business, I have begun to see what people’s true colors are. I grew up in Patterson, New Jersey and one thing we learned on the street was loyalty--that’s all I know. So that’s what I learned from these so called friends...there was no loyalty. Mariah: That was really tough for me to deal with on camera, because I knew everything I had done behind camera by bringing this opportunity to everyone. Helping people to be prepared for something of this magnitude, so I was hurt beyond measure. So it may come across as being bitter on camera, but I’m tough and I have thick skin. Tastemaker: Why did you choose Bravo TV over, VH-1 and We tv? Mariah: Good question. To be honest we chose Bravo TV, because we felt Bravo had the most reach and the demographic. They tapped into a demographic that was parallel to the audience we were trying to reach. Let’s just be real...they have a proven track record. You want to be set up for success and we felt they would really get behind the success of the show. We broke their record for a freshman show, we are making history with Bravo. Married to Medicine helped Bravo become the most watched television network on Sunday. Tastemaker: How is it working with Andy Cohen? Mariah: I’ve met him a few times. I love him! He’s messy honey...he is messy boots, but I love his energy. He has a little catty side. You’ll think you all are friends and then he’ll throw you a curve ball. But I welcome the challenge. He loves my mom Lucy. Tastemaker: Well, that’s our time! Thank you both so much for letting me into your beautiful home and shedding some light on your relationship, your family and the continued success with Married to Medicine. Mariah: It was a pleasure, thank you for the opportunity.

Art + Entertainment|Local Authors The Adventures of Maddie is currently being sold on Amazon and theadventuresofmaddie. com, retailing for $11.95, and will be available on iTunes this summer.

The Adventures of Maddie Author Monyetta Shaw

Monyetta Shaw is the perfect combination of business woman, entrepreneur and dedicated mother. A supporter of The Compound Foundation, The League of Women Voters, Beyond the Game Foundation and National Black Arts Festival, Monyetta has been recognized with honors such as the Philanthropist of the Year Award and acknowledged as one of the Top 25 Influential Women in Atlanta. Beyond her achievements as an entrepreneur, philanthropist and now author, Shaw believes her most important accomplishment is being a mother. Her dedication to family, business and service to others proves that it is possible to not only have it all, but to do it all well. Now in a fun new book for kids, Shaw takes kids through an adventure with Maddie. Inspired by Shaw’s daughter Madilyn, The Adventures of Maddie: Meet Maddie is a relatable story with elments that ring true to any young child. The colorful and cheery narrative shows Maddie playing sports with friends, tackling school work and spending time with her parents. Kids will learn valuable lessons important to the growth and education of a child. “My family is my strength, they guide and nurture me; everything I am is for them. I now know the meaning of unconditional love. This book is my way of scrapbooking their experiences, leaving a documented legacy for my children to cherish for a lifetime.” says Shaw.–Tiffini Gatlin 41 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Art + Entertainment|Local Authors

Author Rashan Ali

Piper Sky’s Pink Popsicle Shoes Multi-media personality Rashan Ali has had success with radio, tv and film and now has added author to her impressive resumé with the release of her first children’s book, Piper Sky’s Pink Popsicle Shoes. After noticing the limited number of diverse characters in today’s literature, Ali, a mom of two young daughters, was motivated to develop the Piper Sky Book series after noticing a limited number of diverse characters in today’s literature for children. Piper is the new character on the “block” and her adventures will take kids through a playful journey, learning lesson of kindness and sharing, values in which Ali says are important in teaching her own children. “I wanted my daughters and other children with diverse backgrounds to feel celebrated and to have fictional characters who look like them and that they can relate to,” said Ali. “Piper embodies the characteristics I am teaching my daughters and my goal is for her to inspire children to be confident and to maintain strong values.”–Tiffini Gatlin For more information on the Piper Sky series visit 42 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

[Lifestyle| Travel




Photography by Chanda Scott

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Always keep proof of identity on your person, one or two credit cards and contact information for where you are staying. Cash is good but don’t carry a lot.


Carry a small handbag rather than a large shopping bag, that is a sure giveaway of you being a tourist. Much as you might feel at home, there is somebody watching your shopping spree.


Scope out local attire and don’t wear anything that makes you stand out (in a weird way). Showing that you are a tourist is bad enough. Don’t come off being that “ignorant” tourist!


TAKE LOTS OF PICTURES Selfie’s are cool but ask passers-by to help take your picture. It’s a great conversation starter and gets you tips from locals on where to go and what to see.


Check out nice restaurants by yourself, all you need is a book and some headphones and nobody will bother you, unless, of course, you would like to be bothered by an admirer seated at the bar!


Be aware of your surroundings. Ending up alone in a dark corridor in unknown quarters with threat of personal danger is not the ideal situation to be in while on vacation.


THE TRUTH MAY HURT You don’t always have to be truthful to the next stranger you speak to. Unless you are completely trusting of a new contact. Keep conversation minimal and personal details restricted.

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8 LEARN YOUR DESTINATION As a solo traveler, chances are you might be ‘taken for a ride’. Learn how much a cab ride, train ticket, etc. should cost so you don’t have a bad experience with money.


YOUR GUT AIN’T LYING Most importantly, follow your gut. If something does not feel right, go with your intuition. Follow through on your instincts and you’ll do fine!

TASTEMAKER: What do you think draws people to your jewelry line and what are the most popular pieces that you sell from the line? A.P.: The symbolism behind the pieces is the main reason most people are drawn to my line, with the more popular items being the Sanskrit collection and the gemstone wrap bracelets. TASTEMAKER: What pieces from your collection do you wear most and why? AP: I wear my Number 8 necklace and Arjuna Arrow bracelet every day; the Number 8 because it is my numerology digit and the personality traits were spoton; the Arjuna bracelet because Arjuna is considered the hero of Hindu epic Mahabharata. His strength lies in his extraordinary levels of concentration.

Local Tastemaker: Asha Patel of Asha Patel Designs We are all grateful for the day that Asha Patel jumped into the driver’s seat of her entrepreneurial career by leaving her corporate job to become her own boss. With a passion for simple elegance, she began creating a line of jewelry that brings unique designs to the masses. Born in London to a traditional Indian family, Asha’s rich culture inspires her highly sought jewelry. From delicate necklaces to beautiful gemstone wrap bracelets, each distinctive piece has a deep meaning behind them. Lifestyle Editor Andrea Janise caught up with Asha to learn more about her trendsetting pieces.–By Andrea Janise TASTEMAKER: We love how delicate your pieces are, but they still make a bold statement. Can you tell us your inspiration for the designs and the meaning behind your collection? Asha Patel: My inspiration comes from my background, upbringing, and through travel. I wanted to create a symbolic line which blended both the East and West. Personally, I am more apt to wear a piece if it means something to me. For example, the line has several shanti styles, which means ‘peace.’

TASTEMAKER: What drew you to this business? What are the successes and challenges of being a business owner in Atlanta? A.P.: Jewelry making began as a hobby as it does for many, but it was a form of therapy for me during a difficult time in my life. The success for me lies in how the line has grown, while the challenge is the art of balancing many hats as I am a one woman show. TASTEMAKER: Well, we are certainly rooting for you and wish you the best with everything! What do you have in mind for the future for Asha Patel Designs? A.P.: My future goals are to increase my online presence and continue to design pieces that people connect with.


I Love My City Designer Asha Patel shares her favorite spots in Atlanta • What is your favorite Atlanta area restaurant? Taqueria Del Sol is our family favorite. I have a penchant for tacos, chips and salsa! • What Atlanta artist is playing on your iPod or radio these days? Hmmm, my Atlanta-based artist would be Ne-Yo. • Where do you go to relax in Atlanta? I’m a homebody, so home is my primary relaxation spot, but as a treat, I love the hammam spa at Exhale Atlanta.

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Tastemaker Magazine: From relocating to Atlanta to open Justin’s Restaurant with Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs, and opening your own restaurant, Chef Rob’s Caribbean Cafe, you have been in the Atlanta dining scene for quite a while. When did you first develop a passion for cooking? Chef Rob: When I was about 13 years old, I was working as a dishwasher at an Italian restaurant and when I watched the chef, it looked easy. It turned out that cooking came easy and natural to me, so I eventually pursued it. TM: You are no stranger to working with celebrities and cooking for Atlanta’s elite. Who were the most interesting celebrities to work with and why?

The CheF Rob ExperiencE Executive chef and restaurateur diversifies his Caribbean imprint in Atlanta Chef Robert Gayle has been in the Atlanta dining scene since 1997 when he came to the city to help open Sean “Diddy” Combs’ popular restaurant venture, Justin’s. Raised in Brooklyn, New York with Jamaican roots, Chef Rob quickly found his niche in the culinary scene after attending the Culinary Institute of America. Now with his flagship Sandy Springs restaurant called Chef Rob’s Caribbean Café, and the recent opening of Chef Rob’s Upscale Lounge, we find out more about the man behind the chef jacket, what it’s like working with celebrity clientele, and where he likes to dine at when he’s not in the kitchen. 46 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Chef Rob: Diddy was one of the most interesting that I’ve worked with. I worked with him for four years. He had an internal drive that I admired and developed over the years myself. It’s not only to see a nonstop drive, but the passion about his art. TM: Many Atlantans flock to your restaurant for its delicious, authentic Caribbean flavors. What motivated you to open Chef Rob’s Upscale Lounge, and will customers find this experience different from Chef Rob’s Caribbean Cafe? Chef Rob: My sole motivation is to give back to Caribbean people a sense that they can go to an upscale Caribbean restaurant. We are rich in culture and I want to provide that opportunity and experience through Chef Rob’s. The lounge is something special for me, giving something different that no one is doing on this side of town

A Healthier Approach to Cooking Melissa Lanz is practically like every other mother in America; trying to figure out this thing called work and family balance. A former internet marketing executive, Lanz ditched her day job to promote good eating habits in the midst of a national health crisis. Embracing her love for food, cooking and family, Lanz created The Fresh”

and being able to keep it International at the same time. Guests of the lounge will enjoy live entertainment, music, and hookah in a relaxed environment with good food to eat.

about how we can take advantage of these opportunities. Chef Rob: I would urge everyone to come down to the restaurant and lounge to enjoy the overall experience. Chef Rob’s is a destination spot with a lot to offer as you mentioned including catering, cooking classes, themed nights and more.

TM: We know that being an executive chef and restaurateur requires a lot of time. When you’re not busy at your own restaurants, what Atlanta restaurants do you enjoy dining at, and what do you We invite everyone to experience order off the menu? the ambiance first hand and Chef Rob: To be honest, I like consider us when booking their Houston’s because of their attention next birthday party, group dinner to detail and consistency. The last or special event!— By Andrea time I was there I ordered the Ahi tuna Janise salad…I love Asian food! STK is another place I enjoy and usually For more information on Chef order the lobster or trout. I’m a foodie Rob, visit and ChefRobsUpscaleLounge. and enjoy cuisine of all facets. com. TM: We love that you are broadening the Chef Rob brand with intimate cooking classes, catering options and retail ventures with your signature sauces. Tell us more 47 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

20 in April of 2010, the answer to every families question of “what’s for dinner? Striving to bring fresh food back to the table and reduce the amount of processed ingredients used by American households, Lanz created The Fresh 20 as an online meal planning tool that gives you a 20-ingredient meal plan for five nights a week. Lanz, also released her first cookbook, out now, filled with more than 125 recipes, prep guides and fun family pictures; so you’ll always have a food plan for the family within arms reach! Read more about The Fresh 20 at

Home Decorating Ideas for the Summer Season

The entertaining season is right around the corner, but just because more parties are being hosted in the backyard doesn’t mean your interior design should slack off. Stay trendy with these easy tips that will create conversation and have your guests saying “How creative is that?”— By Alexa Lampasona | Photos + Alexa Lampasona

Glass cabinets in the kitchen showcase a cook’s best dishes before the food is even served. Stack colorful ceramic plates and patterned bowls together. Group keepsake mugs and souvenir glasses for an organized and more open display for your housewares.

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More Ideas, More Fun, More DIY


2. A patterned headboard adds a pop of color to your wall without having to paint. An extra perk- the cushioned back is cozy enough to lean against during nighttime reading. 3. Find that the drinks are poured too quickly and the recycle bin gets too full? Up-cycle wine bottles and use them as centerpieces. Create a collage of pictures for a different way to share memories. Artificial flowers turn bottles into a vase. 4. The best way to remember the last beach trip or mountain vacation? Turn vacation finds into design. Shells or refurbished wood become the room’s focal point. 5. Lighted tree branches bring the outdoors to the living room and add some “natural lighting.” Balance with an elaborate candle stand on the other side of a mantle. Soft lighting replaces a winter fire but still proves to be a great place to unwind.

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Is Social Media Ruining Your Relationship? The Do’s and Don’ts of dating in a digital age By Nicole Schultz

It’s no surprise that meeting your future significant other online is a definite possibility, especially when we live in a society that depends so highly on constant communication through social media. A 2011 survey by the Wedding Report has shown that one in six relationships are now being formed online, via savvy platforms like Twitter and Facebook that make creating connections with someone just a click away. Whether you’re in a relationship with someone now or you are looking to start a new relationship with someone, interacting with that person through social media can be a delicate subject. We all have that friend that is comfortable enough to broadcast the ins and outs of their newfound relationship, regardless of how intimate the details may be. In a world filled with hundreds of ways to express yourself online, there are some boundaries that must be set in the social media circle, especially when it pertains to forming and keeping a healthy relationship. 50 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

Don’t: As mentioned, there is an appropriate time to contact your ex and then there are times when it’s just a bad idea. If it’s 3:30 in the morning and you are tweeting at your ex boyfriend or girlfriend, that is not appropriate. Think of how you would feel if your partner was doing that with an old flame.

^ Do: Maintain a transparent social media lifestyle. Leave your Facebook up on your computer, don’t feel the need to log out every time you exit the room. If you’re dating someone, they should respect you enough to not go snooping through your account.

Do: Post a comment here or there to an ex’s profile in appropriate circumstances. There is nothing wrong with maintaining a healthy relationship with your ex! However, if you are going to be privately messaging them all hours of the day or liking every picture on their newsfeed, that’s going to raise some red flags for your significant other.




Don’t: Overload your Facebook profile or Twitter feed with every glitch in your relationship. If you are the type that likes to break up with your significant other over every minor dispute, do not immediately take to your social media platforms to inform your friends that you are newly single (and then change it back to in a relationship the next hour).


Do: Feel free to let your followers or friends know that you are in a relationship! One of the greatest things about social media is that you can stay connected with old college buddies or extended family without ever needing to pick up the phone. Simply update your relationship status and everyone is on the same page that you are committed to someone special.

Don’t: Give your significant other the password to your accounts. Relationships are all about trust, and there is an element of privacy that every relationship needs to maintain. If your significant other is perusing through private inboxes from before you were dating, they may find things they do not like. Just keep your past in your past and focus on the present.

Overall, there is a lot to consider when it comes to social media and relationships. Just keep in mind that every aspect of your relationship does not need to be public knowledge. Update your profiles often to keep friends and family informed with your life, but not to the point that you are overloading their newsfeed with post after post about your significant other. Keep a nice balance, your followers will appreciate it! 51 TASTEMAKER | July/August 2013

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