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Local Car Dealerships: A Driving


Special Section:

2013 Home Show Gumbo Round-up

Mardi Gras Southwest Louisiana Style Pull-out Insert:

The Eye Clinic’s FYEye Magazine 2013 Calendar Inside January 2013

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



Rehabilitation Hospital

of Jennings


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• Hip Fractures

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Others who can benefit from inpatient rehabilitation are postoperative patients, accident victims and cancer patients. 24 Hour Nursing Care • Physical Therapy • Occupational Therapy Speech Therapy • Nutritional Counseling and Monitoring Case Management Call for a free assessment today. One Hospital Drive, Ste. 101 • Jennings, LA 70546 • Phone: (337) 821-5353 • Fax: (337) 821-5355 or 5366 jenningsrehab@yahoo.com • www.jenningsrehab.com 2 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

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January 2013

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Contents 28


Regular Features

In This Issue

Preview 6 - 11

Local Car Dealership Success 12 - 17

2013 Home Show 18 - 27


New Foldout!

44 Business Buzz 46 By the Numbers 52 First Person: with Shelley Johnson 56 Who’s News 75 Solutions for Life! 80 Ready to Wear 83 Best Impressions 84 Community Contributors 85 McNeese Corral

Home & Family 28 Extreme Health Risks from Pests 32 Winning the Homework Battle Money & Career


36 Financial Tips for Twenty Somethings 42 Be a Winning Team Member

Places & Faces 48 New Development has Historic Roots 54 Everyday Heroes

Gumbo Roundup 58 - 61

Mind & Body 62 Working In a Workout

67 Seal Out Tooth Decay 72 Catch Some ZZZs to Drop Some LBs

Style & Beauty 76 Fashionably Layered 78 Protect Your Pout This Winter

Editors and Publishers

Kristy Armand Christine Fisher

Creative Director/Layout

Barbara VanGossen

Assistant Editor

Katie Harrington

Business Manager

Katie McDaniel

Assistant Designers

Shonda Manuel Kris Roy

Advertising Sales Shanteé Gotte ads@thriveswla.com 337.310.2099 Submissions edit@thriveswla.com Submitted articles and photos are welcome. Thrive assumes no responsibility for unsolicited materials and does not guarantee any submissions.

Don’t just live, thrive!

Thrive is designed for people focused on living a happy, healthy life, one that is balanced, full of energy and contentment. Thrive readers want to make the most of every day and be successful in all areas of their lives – family, health, home and career. 4 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

Save the Date: Salvation Army Empty Bowl Fundraiser On Thursday, March 15, the Salvation Army will hold its fifth annual Empty Bowl Fundraiser. The dinner will be held at L’Auberge Casino Resort and will begin at 6 p.m. Guests will enjoy a variety of soups prepared by Lake Charles’ premier chefs and a handmade, one-of-a-kind ceramic soup bowl. The evening will conclude with a performance by the Victory Belles from the National World War II Museum in New Orleans. The proceeds from the evening’s event will benefit the programs of the Salvation Army, which provides much needed services to the area’s needy.

the Center Vein Center SinceSince 1992,1992, the Vein of of Louisiana has offered comprehensive Louisiana has offered comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of vein diagnosis and treatment of vein disorders as varicose disorders such such as varicose veins veins and and Dr. James Ingram, a spiderspider veins.veins. Dr. James Ingram, a vascular surgeon, and Acadiana’s vascular surgeon, and Acadiana’s only only Certified vein specialist, certified BoardBoard Certified vein specialist, certified the American of Phlebology, by thebyAmerican BoardBoard of Phlebology, wasinfirst the to state to perform was first theinstate perform the the newest treatments, including: newest treatments, including: • Endovenous • Endovenous LaserLaser • VNUS RF Closure • VNUS RF Closure • European Microsurgery • European Microsurgery • Foam Sclerotherapy • Foam Sclerotherapy

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procedures are covered by insurance. Most Most procedures are covered by insurance.

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2:40 PM

Louisiana’s Premier Center of Excellence Louisiana’s Premier Center of Excellence 155 Hospital • Lafayette, LA • 1-888-499-VEIN • www.DoctorIngram.com 155 Hospital DriveDrive • Lafayette, LA • 1-888-499-VEIN • www.DoctorIngram.com

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We Mean Business T

he mission of the Business First Banking team

is to make Business First the financial institution of choice for Louisiana enterprises and their owners and employees. Mortgage financing is a key part of that mission. Our lending team is experienced in securing low rates and favorable terms, along with personalized service and expert financial advice. When you are buying a home or refinancing an existing mortgage, contact Business First Bank’s Mortgage Division. We know the business of

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

Business First www.thriveswla.com


A Shared Love for

by Katie Harrington

It’s an overcast December day, just a week before Christmas, and Craig Guillory and his teenage son Creighton are busy finishing a costume that, once completed, will be delivered to its owner in Natchez, Mississippi. Craig will soon begin work on the five costumes needed by another local krewe and the seven needed for his own. He chuckles after being asked when he will start work on his own costume. “Last year I started on mine 10 days out from the ball, but that was a good year,” Guillory says. “Most years, I start about seven days out. I have to. If I get it done too early, I’ll keep adding stuff to it and it will be too heavy when it comes time to wear it.” Guillory is a familiar presence when it comes to the Southwest Louisiana Mardi Gras scene. He and his wife formed Krewe Chetu Jadi (Krewe of Our Ancestors) 26 years ago after watching the Krewe of Krewes Parade the year before. “We used to go to New Orleans every year for Mardi Gras, but one year, we made it back in town in time to catch the Krewe of Krewes Parade,” says Guillory. “We decided that the next year, we were going to ride in the big parade.” He has served as the chairman of the annual Royal Gala for nearly a decade and has been president of Mardi Gras of Southwest Louisiana four times in 23 years. But how did this full-time structure mechanic at Northop Grumman with a degree in drafting become a costume designer in his spare time? “Now, I do it for fun, because I enjoy Mardi Gras,” says Guillory. “But originally, we started making our 6 www.thriveswla.com

own because at the time we couldn’t afford to pay someone to make the big costumes we wanted.” He sought the advice of the late David O’Quain, local costume designer-extraordinaire, for many of the tips and tricks of the trade and went to work. His sister and another distant cousin work as his seamstresses, making the gowns and other clothing items to go with the large headpieces and collars crafted by Guillory. In recent years he’s had help with making the costumes from his son. Creighton, a junior at LaGrange High School, first paraded at the age of 18 months and by the age of 13, was ready to tackle making his own costume. That year, he told his dad what he wanted and after the initial construction was complete, he decorated it. At 14, Creighton sketched, built and decorated his God of Fire costume on his own. “I like to have fun and Mardi Gras is one time of the year that you get to do that,” Creighton says. “Making costumes is something different to do than what most kids do. I take pride in being different.” Today, the two work side by side, creating the Thrive Magazine for Better Living

large, feathered collars and headpieces for krewes near and far. The piece that will be delivered to Natchez was created from nothing more than a picture. “This lady e-mailed this picture of the costume she wanted and asked if we could make it,” Guillory says. “I met with her twice for different fittings and we will soon be able to deliver the costume to her.” The process is pretty standard for each costume. First, generic frames are built and then Guillory meets with the krewe to find out more about their general theme. “This is where I come in,” says Creighton. “I research their theme and come up with different ideas for us to present to them.” Once the sketches are approved, the two go to work. No material is off-limits. They hand-string beads, cut pieces from costume jewelry and hot glue each little individual rhinestone onto the costumes they make. It is truly a labor of love, but for a father who aspires to pass along his love of Mardi Gras to his children, it is well worth the effort.

January 2013

photos by Shonda Manuel

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Mardi Gras Parades

“Throw me somethin’ mista!” photography by monsoursphotography.com

Everyone loves a parade and Southwest Louisiana is no exception, with the state’s second largest Mardi Gras celebration taking place here each year. The excitement of being stationed along the parade route and catching beads and trinkets, or viewing the crowd from high atop a parade float as you disperse throws to the eager crowd below is hard to beat. Parades don’t just run themselves, though. Blocking off miles of one of the city’s main arteries for hours at a time, not once, but four times in one weekend, is a pretty big task. And someone has to organize all of the floats so they roll seamlessly out of the staging area. Rebecca Moss serves as the parade chairman for Mardi Gras of Southwest Louisiana, the nonprofit organization charged with putting on Southwest Louisiana’s Mardi Gras celebrations for the past 34 years. Going on her fourth year of organizing the parades, she has become quite a guru on the topic. 8 www.thriveswla.com

“There is so much that has to go on behind the scenes in order for a parade to roll in a safe and orderly fashion,” says Moss. “The planning for the coming year really starts as soon as the last parade is wrapped up on Mardi Gras day.” Moss spends the months leading up to Mardi Gras each year meeting with various city officials and agencies in order to prepare for any challenges or changes for the coming year. “For the last couple of years the biggest challenge we’ve faced has been the construction at the Civic Center and along Ryan Street in downtown Lake Charles,” adds Moss. “We’ve had to work through everything from changing the way we stage the floats at the Civic Center to changing the route because of road construction.” Moss says solid relationships with city officials makes this process a lot smoother. “We constantly speak with city officials to keep up with progress Thrive Magazine for Better Living

on construction projects that may affect the Mardi Gras parade route. It is important that we all work together since we all bring different talents and skills to the table.” Mister Edwards, director of public works for the city of Lake Charles, says his department begins preparations about four months out. “We start early by collecting and recounting all our metal barricades. We get them back in-house, build more wooden ones and each year we try to order another couple hundred.” Edwards says their hope is to eventually be able to barricade the entire parade route in the interest of public safety. “Once we have a good inventory on the barricades, we meet with the police department to determine where we will need barricades,” adds Edwards. “We also check on all of our street sweepers and make sure they are in good working January 2013

order, and we begin communicating with our employees to determine who will work when and where.” According to Edwards, they even drive the parade route back and forth to look for potential hazards. “This crew is checking for low-hanging limbs. If they are in the public right of way, we go ahead and trim them, but if they are on private property, we begin contacting the owners.” We make Traffic and crowd control, as well as post-parade clean-up, are some of the Homemade Cream Cheese! biggest challenges the public works department faces when it comes to the parades. “When it comes to clean-up, we try to get the bulk of it done as soon as each parade wraps up,” Edwards says. “On the Wednesday morning following Mardi Gras day, we have a minimum of 100 people out cleaning up the Civic Center grounds, Lock Park and Ryan Street.” Edwards adds that the public can help make the process a smooth one. “If they Shipping service available! are hosting a party on private property, we ask that they bag up all of their trash and place it in the right-of-way either Mardi Gras night or the next morning. We will come by and pick it up. This helps us keep it from blowing into the street or onto someone else’s property.” Moss and Edwards both agree that the most important thing for the public to know is that creating a safe environment is the main goal for a family friendly event Whiskey 2/9 Chris 2/9 everyone involved with putting on the Mardi Gras Myers Cagle parades. “We want everyone to come out and have a great time. That is what Mardi Gras is all about,” Easton 2/8 2/9 Pookie says Moss. “But, we’ve got to make sure that we Corbin Marceaux Band Chubby 2/9 focus on safety for everyone involved, from the Carrier and the float riders to the parade watchers.” Bayou Swamp Band CJ Chenier 2/10

Catch the

Feb. 7-10, 2013


For more information on the 2013 Mardi Gras parades, visit www.swlamardigras.com.

& the Red Hot Louisiana band

Sabine 2/7 River Band

Phillip 2/7 Glyn Band

2/8 Joel Martin Project

Gregg 2/10 Martinez and the Delta Kings

mardigras.portarthur.com Port Arthur Convention & Visitors Center


January 2013

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Mardi Gras Schedule of Events

Sunday, January 6 at 5 p.m.

*Twelfth Night An enchanting evening with the 2012 royal courts of more than 50 krewes making their last glittering promenade, ushering in the 2013 season. Luxurious door prizes, a parade, live music and dancing! Tickets are $5 in advance, or $6 at the door. Children 5 and under are admitted for free.

Vinton Mardi Gras Celebration 8 a.m. - until Downtown Vinton. Chicken run kicks off at 8 a.m., followed by a gumbo cook-off at 10 a.m., and a parade at 1 p.m., ending at Knights of Columbus Hall where the gumbo judging will begin at 1:30 p.m.

Tuesday, February 5, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

*Queens’ Pageant Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for children 12 and under.

*Krewe of the Golden Years Senior citizens who have passed down Mardi Gras traditions celebrate the season with food and a Mardi Gras ball. Free to seniors 60 and up.

Thursday, January 17, 6-8:30 p.m.

Friday, February 8, 7 p.m.

Community Dance Lake Charles Civic Center Exhibition Hall.

Merchant’s Parade Downtown-Midtown Lake Charles

Saturday, February 2

Saturday, February 9, 8 a.m.-2 p.m.

Saturday, January 12 Times Vary

Annual Mardi Gras Run Gueydan 7 a.m. - until Annual run sponsored by Le Krewe de la Originals et Les Enfants and the Duck Festival Association. Features an early morning chicken run, lunch, live music, an auction and a dance. Parade begins at 3 p.m. Dance starts at 5 p.m.

*World Famous Cajun Extravaganza and Gumbo Cook-off You will not want to miss this taste-from-every-pot event or the live, hot Southern and Cajun music that comes along with it. Admission is $5. Children 5 and under are admitted free. Carlyss Mardi Gras Trail Ride, 8:30 a.m. Begins and ends at West Cal Arena in Sulphur. Line up at 6 a.m. Admission fee for trail riders is $5.

Your King Cake

Krewe of Omega Parade, 2 p.m. Downtown Lake Charles

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*Krewe of Barkus Parade, 3 p.m. Fantastically disguised canines parade in full Mardi Gras attire, all vying for the title of “Mystical Dog.” Entry fee applies.

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*Zydeco Dance 3-5 p.m Live bands playing Mambo and Zydeco.

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Krewe of Cosmos Presentation 6:30 p.m. The Krewe of Cosmos presents their royal court in style at the Sulphur High School Auditorium with skits, songs and more.

*Krewe of Illusions, 7:30 p.m. Celebrate Mardi Gras with the 24th annual presentation of the Krewe of Illusions. Tickets are $30 orchestra, formal attire required. $18 balcony reserved seating and $15 standard balcony seating, casual attire.

Sunday, February 10

*Taste de la Louisiane, 11 a.m.—2 p.m. Pots and pots of all-you-can-eat traditional Louisiana cuisine for a $7 admission fee. *Children’s Day, Noon-3 p.m. Old-time Louisiana culture, arts and crafts, Mardi Gras music and magic. An education station complete with safety and health information. Children’s Parade, 3:30 p.m. Downtown-Midtown Lake Charles. A purple, green and gold parade for the young and young at heart. *Lighted Boat Parade, 7 p.m. Be dazzled by the glowing boat parade on shimmering Lake Charles.

Lundi Gras, February 11

*Royal Gala, 7 p.m. The Cinderella moment of the season features the 2013 courts of more than 50 krewes with kings, queens, royal dukes and duchesses, captains, courtesans and jesters. Tickets are $5 in advance, or $6 at the door. Children 5 and under are admitted for free.

FAT TUESDAY, February 12

Iowa Chicken Run The chicken run starts and ends at the Knights of Columbus Hall and runs west down Highway 90. Ride a float, catch a chicken and finish with some gumbo and live music for a toe-tapping good time. Motorcycles, Hot Rods and Classics Parade, Noon Downtown-Midtown Lake Charles. Krewe of Krewes’ Parade, 5:00 p.m. Downtown-Midtown Lake Charles. Hundreds of elaborate krewe floats, costumes, beads and more wind through the city in the culmination of the Fat Tuesday celebration. 5:00 p.m. *Denotes events taking place at the Lake Charles Civic Center. Events subject to change. Visit www.swlamardigras. com for the most up-to-date information.

Fax (337) 477-3352 • 4845 Lake Street, Lake Charles 10 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

Lake Charles/ na a i s i u o L t s e w h t Sou

Parades, dances, galas and more!

IT’S Party TIME! JAN 6 - FEB 12


Call 800-456-7952 or for a complete listing of events and details, visit www.swlamardigras.com.

January 2013

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What Drives the

Success Local Car of

Economists everywhere agree

that successful, locally-owned businesses are what sustain a local economy and make a community a great place to live. One sector of locally-owned businesses that seem to do well year in and year out are car dealerships, many of which have been owned and operated by the same families for generations. According to the National Automobile Dealers Association, there were 17,540 dealerships nationwide in 2012. When looking at local dealerships, there are several that have become household names, being passed down from generation to generation. Thrive recently spoke with several of these to find out more about what it takes to create a successful car dealer dynasty.

12 www.thriveswla.com

Dealerships? by Ann McMurry, Katie Harrington, and Haley Armand

Buddy Bolton Buddy Bolton founded Bolton Ford in Lake Charles in 1976. There are currently 85 employees, of which two are family members. King Bolton, son of Buddy Bolton, says his role in the business has changed many times over the past nine years. King Bolton became the face of Bolton Ford in 2007. “Having worked in every department, I King and Buddy Bolton gained a better understanding for the business and respect for the people I work with. My dad made it clear from the beginning that I would not replace anyone. Instead, it was our goal for me to replace my dad.” But, King added that his dad is still in the store every day. “He claims that because he enjoys the car business so much, he’s never worked a day in his life. I’m still trying to figure that one out!” King said advantages of being able to work with his dad are loyalty, trust and the overall family atmosphere. “Loyalty is relevant to everything we do. Our sense of loyalty toward each other makes us equally committed to the success of our business. There is also an innate trust that exists between us. One of the first lessons my dad taught me as a kid was the importance of trust.” King credits these values for allowing him and his dad to collaborate to make the best decisions for the continued success of their dealership. “My dad and I are very approachable and we love working with people,” King said.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

“Having a sense of family draws our company closer together and I think my coworkers and customers appreciate this. It fosters a sense of transparency.” King said he and his dad get along very well. He is thankful for the business because it has brought their relationship closer. Likewise, he is thankful to work in a town like Lake Charles. “Southwest Louisiana has been very supportive of a small business like Bolton Ford. Without our customers, we cannot thrive as a business. We have a responsibility to give back to this community just as it has given to us. We are one big family!”

Jack Hebert

Courtney Hebert, Khristine Hebert, Jack Hebert and Gabby Fisher.

It’s hard to determine what hat Jack Hebert wears the most – automobile dealer or family man. On one hand, he’s at his business, All-Star Buick GMC Truck, six days a week. He doesn’t like to take days off, he doesn’t want to take vacations, and when there was talk of putting his office upstairs when the new building was being constructed, he balked. He wanted to be downstairs, in the middle of everything. He’s probably been off only 10 days since he opened his business in 1987, and he is the first to admit that, “I love to work.”

On the other hand, he is surrounded by family, working side by side with him, and he credits much of the success of the business to them. His daughter Khristine has been with him since he opened the business. She is the general sales manager. His daughter Kelli is the finance manager, and while she is more reserved than Khristine, she is very good at her job, Hebert said. “They not only assist in management, but so many people come in and ask for these girls,” Hebert said. In addition to his daughters, his granddaughters Courtney and Gabby also work at the dealership. Courtney is the daughter of Hebert’s son, Kevin, who works at Turner Industries. Courtney works on the used car lot, assisting in management and working with inventory. Gabby, Khristine’s daughter, works the phones. She is widely recognized for the commercials she began doing for the dealership when she was 7 years old. “We would go out to eat, and people would say, ‘There’s Gabby.’ Children would repeat Gabby’s commercial,” Hebert said. Gabby is expected to move to the sales force. Hebert said he tries to greet people who come into the business, but Khristine and Kelli are very effective at what they do. “They are as good as I’ve ever seen in the business.” General Motors does a significant number of tier bonuses, and the corporation gives those bonuses quarterly. “One quarter I told Khristine that it didn’t look like we were going

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to make our bonus,” Hebert said. “We were 13 units away from goal. Khristine had to sell 13 GMCs in two days. She got on the phone and she started calling people. When the smoke cleared, she sold 17 trucks in two days.” Hebert said it’s beneficial to have younger family members in the business for a number of reasons. “We need the youthful energy,” he said. Young people are often more adept at the internet and other technology, which is becoming more and more important to business, Hebert said. “I’m seeing a big move toward internet sales,” he added. “Big dealerships will do 50 to 60 percent of their sales over the internet. That’s the coming thing. We’re doing more advertising through the internet.”

Phone apps are available which can be used to determine what a vehicle is bringing at auction. Many times, younger people generally are more proficient at using those apps, Hebert said. “You need the young people around you,” he added. “It makes you work harder. They make you think more.” Hebert said he is optimistic about the future here in Calcasieu Parish. “I’m a homeboy,” he said. “I love Calcasieu Parish. I’d like to buy some property and expand. I’ve been offered bigger dealerships, but the future is here. I call this the Gold Coast; there is so much potential here. “Within six months, there will be so much business in this area,” Hebert continued. “They’re drilling wells in Rockefeller and in the Sulphur

mines again. There’s the Sasol project. There are rumors of a big project at (Northrop) Grumman. Citgo has big projects on board and so do the LNG plants. There is so much coming here. We have a lot to be thankful for.” Hebert enjoys his work and is excited about the possibilities that lie ahead for businesses in Calcasieu Parish. He is delighted that his family is a big part of his own business venture, although he admits it may not be for everyone. “You have to be a people person, especially if you are going to be in a successful business,” he said. “It’s fun, but it’s not always easy. The more you grow, the more cash flow you need. You constantly have to be watching everything. But I love what I’m doing.”

wonderful to us for 30 years and we are going to make sure they want to keep us around for another 30 with unbeatable service.” Navarre’s first job was in finance, while going to McNeese State University at night. Then, he went to work a Gannie Chevrolet, a small Chevy dealership in Crowley. How he went from managing the dealership at the age of 26 to owning six franchises today, is actually quite serendipitous, especially knowing that his father died when Navarre was only 5 years old and he was raised by a single mom who had to use Social Security to help feed their family. He came from nothing and worked extremely hard. “After setting sales records for four years straight at Gannie Chevrolet, Chevrolet approached me and asked me to have the dealer, Mr. Gannie, write a letter giving them permission to speak with me about becoming a dealer some day,” says Navarre. “He did and about two months later, they contacted me and asked me to take over ownership of a dealership in Mississippi and I turned them down. They offered me a dealership in Grammercy next and I turned that down too.” Navarre adds that he told them to find him something within a 60-mile radius of his home town of Welsh. “My mom has always been there for me so I wasn’t going to leave her. I wanted to stay close to home.” The opportunity arose for him to take over the Chevrolet dealership in Sulphur in 1982 and his success continued. Chevrolet called him again in 1988 and asked him to take over the Lake Charles dealership because two previous Lake Charles Chevy dealerships had closed over a six year period while competing with him in Sulphur. “I wanted to make sure that my employees had security, that’s why I bought Honda and Hyundai— two import franchises,” Navarre adds. “Now we are

diversified, selling cars from America, Japan, and Korea. If there is a strike in America we can sell cars from two other countries. If there’s a Tsunami in Japan we can sell cars from two other countries. Our employees will always be able to make a living and our customers will always have great transportation.” He credits his success to hard work and the best business partner anyone could ask for, God. “God has blessed me with all my success.” He also says that honesty and a customer-first mentality have been keys to his success. “People trust us. We won’t hire anyone who isn’t 100 percent honest and hard working. We invest in their training and bring them to their maximum potential.” His older sons have taken on active roles in the family business, but not before going to college and working their way up the ladder of the family business. “All four of my boys have more education than I do, tremendous work ethics and outstanding integrity,” Navarre says. “They don’t have to work for me, so I am honored that they have chosen to spend their lives with me.” Today, Jareth is general sales manager of Billy Navarre Chevrolet in Lake Charles; Barrett is sales manager of the Honda store; Ryan is general manager at the Sulphur location; and Grant is the top finance manager in the company after only one year. Navarre’s sons all say they’ve learned many lessons about not only business, but also life, by working with their dad. “He always teaches us to compete against our own best self instead of others,” his sons say. “Be accountable, do what’s right, and God will continually bless this company.”

Billy Navarre

The Navarre men

Nearly 30 years ago, Billy Navarre began his Sulphur Chevrolet dealership, with only 12 employees. Today, he employs a crew of nearly 300; many of which have worked for him for over 20 years. He owns dealerships in Lake Charles and Sulphur and just recently expanded from four franchises to six, with the addition of Cadillac and Hyundai Equus. In the beginning of 2013, Navarre will complete a nearly $9,000,000 expansion. This includes two new Chevrolet showroom floors in Lake Charles and Sulphur and two QuickLube and car wash centers. In Lake Charles they will have six bays, allowing them to do six oil changes and tire rotations every 15 minutes and following their service, customers will receive a free car wash through their million dollar $3 car wash system. After all these accomplishments, you would think Mr. Navarre would be satisfied, however, he believes his customers don’t just deserve good service, but “our very best effort” when it comes to preparing cars and quick service. “Our customers have been

14 www.thriveswla.com

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

Bubba Oustalet

Kenny Phipps

Bubba Oustalet founded Bubba Oustalet Automotive Group in Jennings in 1952. It is owned today by Rick Oustalet, Joel Oustalet, Jimmy Oustalet and Jimmy Lyons.

Kenny Phipps has been buying and selling cars for most of his life, but in recent years, his son Dylan is a key part of the business. Phipps owns Autoplex dealerships in Sulphur, Lake Charles, Lafayette, and Jennings. Only the Jenning’s location, Gulf Coast Autoplex, is a new car dealership.

While attending Prep School in New Orleans, Bubba knew he wanted to follow in the path of his father and grandfather. His grandfather immigrated to America in late 1898 and worked in the field of engineering. His father, at age 13, formed his own small business, building wagons and doing metallurgy. By age 21, his father became an expert in automobile mechanics, and subsequently opened one of the largest independent automotive operations in the South. It was during the summers while working with his father that Bubba’s interests drifted into the automotive field. But, Bubba also inherited his mother’s love for music. This talent helped fuel his automotive dreams. Due to the depression, Bubba’s father couldn’t afford to send him to school. Bubba dreamed of going to Louisiana State University and learned that the band was holding interviews for potential scholarship holders. He was offered a scholarship, making him the first member in his family to attend college. His education was put on hold prior to his senior year when he was suddenly called to serve in the Naval Air Force during World War II as a flight engineer. During this time he graduated form the Pan American Airline Flight Engineering School and the Navy School in Aircraft Engineering and Mechanical Structure. He was honorably discharged after four years and reentered LSU that same year to complete his Mechanical Engineering degree. He worked as a student instructor in the engine lab on campus before attaining his bachelor’s degree in 1947.

January 2013

Ford Motor Company recruited Bubba to attend the Dealer Training School, and after just four-and-a-half years following graduation, Bubba became a sales engineer, truck manager and general sales manager for the largest Ford dealership in the South. He bought his first dealership in Jennings at age 28, and now has nine dealerships. Bubba is married to the former Lena Mae Easley of Shreveport, Louisiana. They have ten children— seven boys and three girls; five of the boys are either owning or managing a dealership in Gulfport, Mississippi, or Jennings, Louisiana. Out of the 90 employees currently employed today at Bubba Oustalet Automotive Group in Jennings, six are family members. “Family adds a lot to our business. Everyone helps each other,” Rick Oustalet said. He added that at times owning a business with family members can be difficult, especially when dealing with major issues. It is a daunting task to get everyone on the same page. “But it’s definitely worth it and we feel it adds a lot to what we offer our customers. We’re all in it together.”

Dylan, a graduate of McNeese State University, buys used cars for the business, and Phipps said Dylan is very effective at what he does. From all indications, they tend to balance out each other. Phipps said he has the people skills, while Dylan brings some technology skills to the business. “I know how to get along with people,” Phipps said. “But I don’t know anything about computers. These days, you buy a lot of cars on the computer.” For Phipps, the automobile business has been a natural transition. His step-father had a used car lot in Sulphur, so he was familiar with the business. “I started messing around with cars when I was 17 years old,” he said. Phipps initially was in the auction business, and he had auctions in Lake Charles, Lafayette, Beaumont, and Baton Rouge. However, he ended up selling the Lake Charles auction to Mike Pedersen of Pedersen & Pedersen Auctions, and he sold the others to Manheim Auctions, which is the largest automobile auction company in the world by volume of trade. Perhaps the next logical step was to open dealerships, and the four locations keep Phipps and

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Dylan busy. When Dylan isn’t on the computer purchasing cars, he may be out on the road trying to buy them. Phipps described the business as “fast,” which appeals to his son, and it’s profitable. In addition to the dealerships, Phipps has his own finance company, which boasts over 2,700 accounts. The used car business is especially good these days, Phipps said, but the new car business is slower. The economy is certainly a factor, and some areas are struggling much more than Southwest Louisiana. “This area is better than a lot of areas, but new car prices are still high,” Phipps said. With higher automobile prices, more people are opting to buy used cars, he added. “We’re still buying and selling the used cars.” And that’s keeping Phipps, and his son Dylan, as busy as they would like to be.



John Stelly

John Stelly

John Stelly, CEO of Paramount Companies, is “makin’ deals…every day,” but he is not limiting those transactions to selling cars. He is buying dealerships, and at last count, he is up to 6: two in Lake Charles, two in DeRidder, one in Silsbee, Texas, and one in El Dorado, Arkansas. He has three Nissan dealerships, and one Ford, one Mazda, and one Honda dealership. For Stelly, it’s all in a day’s work. Perhaps he is relying on his father’s influence when it comes to business. His father wasn’t in the car business, but his work ethic has certainly rubbed off on Stelly.

The older Stelly held three jobs, and John Stelly is obviously a go-getter much like his dad. He is hoping his own children are developing those habits. “Hard work and dedication is priceless,” Stelly said. “That’s what I tell my kids. No matter how much money you make, you have to be productive. You can own one dealership or you can own 100, but you have to get up every day and you have to go to work every day. That’s what got you here and that’s what will keep you here.” Stelly has four children, ages 20, 18, 17, and 8. They aren’t part of his operation – yet. The oldest three are in college. Evan attends Texas Christian University, Mariah attends Rice University, and Adam attends Loyola University. Josiah is a student at T.S. Cooley Elementary School. When his children finish college, Stelly is optimistic that at least some of them will work with him. “This is a great business financially,” he said. “If you are a long-term thinker, and things are done right, you will never have to look for another job.” Once his children complete college, they can bring many things to the business, Stelly said. “They will have new ideas and a new way of thinking,” he said. “I want them to teach me something different.” Stelly said each generation does things differently. At one time there were no cell phones

and no texting. The younger age group can communicate more effectively in this age of computers and technology. They can play an important role in business today. In addition, a global mindset is imperative in today’s business world, and the collegiate experience that his children are gaining will be invaluable to the company, Stelly said. “They can see the world through an academic perspective,” he said. “And I can show them the hands-on perspective. It’s a lethal combination. It can take them to a whole new level. I’m very excited about that. “By going to college first, they see things differently,” he continued. “They are getting more than just a one-dimensional thought process. They are open-minded and open to new ideas. The college world gives them that opportunity.” Stelly wants his children to learn to think largescale – which is apparently something he has learned through the years. He entered the car business when he responded to a help-wanted ad 25 years ago. “I’m in the building-up stage right now. Once I get to about 10 dealerships, I will give (my children) some of the business,” he said, laughing.

executive assistant who wears many hats, and is basically an extension of Tarver. Their twin sons, Corey and Eric, hold key positions in the business. Both of DeWanna’s parents work with them parttime, as does the mother of Eric’s wife, Katie. Tarver’s sister-in-law and nephew also work with the business. The biggest difficulty that comes with so many family members working together is trying to schedule a family vacation, Tarver said, although, he added, all families with grown children encounter that same obstacle. It may be a little more difficult in their situation, because even if they plan a vacation with just the immediate family, they have to make sure all of the bases are covered with the dealerships. While scheduling conflicts may take place, there are some real advantages, particularly when it comes to bringing in younger people, Tarver said. “They bring new knowledge and new experiences,” Tarver said. “It’s beneficial…it’s fresh and rewarding.” Tarver has gained experience and wisdom during the twenty-plus years he has worked in the auto

industry, but now he has the opportunity to learn from his sons. “It’s the traditional old style modified by newer tools and resources,” he said. “It has come together smoothly. We have tried to mold and merge those perspectives. They realize the virtue in the wisdom. I realize the virtue in the new ideas.” Corey and Eric also have good business sense. “They are so smart,” he said. “When they were 16 or 17, we put them in a video business, and they had a real knack for dealing with circumstances. The way they handled their clients…they showed a lot of wisdom. But they grew up around business. We always had conversations around them; we always kept them in the circle of discussions. So the opportunity was there for them to learn.” But it was never a foregone conclusion that the boys would enter the auto business. “They didn’t work in the dealership until they got out of college,” Tarver said. “But they caught on quickly.” And both Corey and Eric bring different elements to the table. Corey is a people person, and he is now the sales manager at Lake Charles Toyota. Eric is more laid back and has enjoyed the business end of the company. He serves as chief financial officer of

Philip Tarver

The Tarvers

If some view working with family members or supervising family members as challenging, Philip Tarver isn’t one of those people. “It’s more fun than it is challenging,” he said. Tarver should know. His business is the ultimate family affair. He is the owner and manager of Lake Charles Toyota in Lake Charles and Tarver Ford in Sulphur. His wife, DeWanna, is essentially an

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

both dealerships. Both boys started at the bottom and worked their way up in the business. Initially, they weren’t sure if the job was simply a job or something that would unfold into a career. “You really have to enjoy this business for it to be successful,” Tarver said. “But it can get into your blood.” For Corey and Eric, it did. So with the business sense they had already acquired, coupled with the training and additional skills they received on the job, it was full steam ahead for both of them. Tarver is proud of the way in which his sons have grown in the business and have acquired key roles. “The most difficult thing for me has been turning things loose and allowing them to take over,” he said. When it was clear their sons were in the business to stay, the Tarvers opted to expand by buying their Ford dealership in Sulphur. The Ford dealership offered the opportunity for expansion and diversification, and Tarver welcomed the chance to bring the company’s ethical approach to doing business to another location. “It gave us the opportunity to spread our way of doing business to a broader base, to influence more lives,” he said. “The Ford dealership gave us the opportunity to expand that interaction to customers, vendors, and employees. The way we do business permeates through society.”

January 2013

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Special Section: Home Show 2013

Bring it Home with the

Home Show of Southwest Louisiana We all know the phrase “home is where the heart is,” and as cliché as this may sound—it’s true. Studies show that we spend most of our time at home, and our home’s decor is reflective of our personalities. It’s also our largest financial investment. So it only makes sense to start the year off with some new ideas—whether small or large—to revive and enhance your special place, your home.

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Buddy Kohnke of Sears Commercial Sales, the 2013 Home Show chairman. “The show will be filled with an array of expert vendors that span every area of home improvement. If you own a home or want to own a home, this event is for you.” The show will feature more than 140 exhibitor booths displaying products for every area of the home, including the necessary steps and elements needed to build or buy a new home. The event will also showcase the latest samples in flooring, appliances, countertops, plumbing fixtures and more. Each booth will be staffed by experts who will be ready to help you realize the pieces needed to put together the home of your dreams. “The Home Show is a great place to meet the local designers, craftsmen, builders and developers who can help you make your dreams become a reality,” says Vicki Broussard, Home Builders Association Executive Officer. Learn more about the 2013 Home Show of Southwest Louisiana by visiting the HBA of Southwest Louisiana’s website, www.hbaswla.org.

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Open this for great tips from local home experts.


Have a project in mind? Maybe you’re looking to buy a new home or are not sure what kind of home project you want to do, but are curious about your options. Whether you’re dreaming of a remodeling project, yearning to redecorate or just looking for ideas, a visit to the 2013 Home Show of Southwest Louisiana is the first step to realizing your dream home. Your plans and ideas will quickly start to take shape as you walk through the show percolating with ideas for new home improvement projects. Whether you are interested in interior or exterior improvements, this event will have what you need to get your ideas brewing. The Home Builders Association (HBA) of Southwest Louisiana will hold its 22nd Annual Home Show January 12–13, at the Lake Charles Civic Center. The show will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, January 12, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, January 13. Admission is $5 per person. Children 12 and under get in free when accompanied by an adult. “The Home Show is much more than an event for building a new home. It’s a must-attend event for anyone who is planning on redecorating, remodeling or are curious about the latest in interior and exterior improvements,” says

January 2013





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January 2013 www.thriveswla.com


When choosing window treatments for your home, there are some basic questions to ask so you select the right product. Each room may be different and have special needs. Consider how much light you want to allow into the room, privacy and security needed for each room, what type of view you want to maintain, the safety of the treatment if you small children or grandchildren and how much upkeep you are willing to deal with. Visit Budget Blinds, booths 57-58 and 75, at the 2013 Home Show for more tips like this one.

436-2323 www.budgetblinds.com/ lakecharles


2 fireplaces

Having a fireplace in your home provides many advantages, including valuable savings on heating your home. Whether you have a wood-burning fireplace or a fireplace with a gas log, it is important to have your fireplace and chimney inspected at least annually by a professional.

3 interior design

A living room serves different purposes for different people. In some homes they are the main gathering area for family, while in others they’re more of a show room, used only when company comes over. Either way, locate the focal point of the room and arrange your furniture around it. Also, use your furniture to create conversation areas.


725-4321 | www.emmonsfireplaces.com

garage doors/storm shutters


1 window treatments

If home is where the heart is, then your front door holds the key. More than just an entry way to your home, this door should show your home’s personality, whether it’s formal and dignified or simple and colorful. Adding a coordinated garage door and storm shutters can help create a polished look. Find out more about choosing the right doors for your home by visiting A Door Works, booths 59 and 74, at the 2013 Home Show.

5 Outdoor Living


625-2082 | www.adoorworks.com

Southwest Louisiana’s mild winters and moderate temperatures allow us to spend time enjoying the great outdoors quite frequently. Creating an outdoor space that is not only functional, but aesthetically pleasing is key. A nice, brick enclosure around your grill or a stone fire pit can add enjoyment to your outdoor adventures for years to come. Visit Fireside Stone, booths 145-146, at the 2013 Home Show for more tips like this one.

905-FIRE(3473) | www.firesidestonellc.com

6 home theater 7 exterminating

Pests and rodents can gain entry into your home from the smallest of cracks. Examine your home every few months and make any needed repairs including caulking around windows, doorways and pipes. Keep mulch away from the foundation of your home and keep trees and bushes trimmed so they do not touch your home. Learn more pest control tips at the J&J Exterminating booth 39.

474-7377 - Lake Charles | 463-4574 - DeRidder | www.jjext.com. January 2013

When considering your home audio and theater needs, a little planning goes a long way. Whether building a new home or remodeling an old one, planning out your system and placement ahead of time saves a lot of frustration. Planning for custom lighting and home automation which can conveniently help you control your thermostat, door locks, lighting and more can also make your life much easier and can help cut down on your energy costs. For more tips and information on home audio and theater systems, visit Bailey’s Audio, booth 120, at the 2013 Home Show.

433-4005 | www.baileysaudio.net

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Special Section: Home Show 2013

choosing the right contractor As your home ages, it may need to be updated or repaired. A handy homeowner is capable of performing minor jobs; however, when it comes to major repairs, it is best to hire a professional contractor who is licensed and insured.

Every year homeowners throughout the United States lose an estimated $25 million because of working with unlicensed contractors. Your home is your largest investment. You protect it from fires, inclement weather and wear and tear, but it’s also important to be protective of your home when choosing a contractor. A licensed contractor is required to be state-licensed and insured. Ask to see a contractors’ current license, general liability insurance, and workman’s comp certificates. Any professional contractor will be more than happy to show these to you. Unfortunately, gone are the days where an agreement can be reached with a handshake. Obtain all estimates in writing and ensure that both parties are in agreement with the work to be completed. This will also prevent any surprises on the final invoice. Another great way to save is to gather multiple estimates for your project. Make sure that all of the contractors are bidding on the same items of the project. Some contractors’ estimates include all work to be done, while others’ may be less expensive with materials and work left out. Read through each thoroughly, and remember the cheapest is not always the best. Here are a few final pieces of advice: Ask for a list of references. Ask about the employees and subcontractors that will be working in your home. Chances are that you will be unable to be home at all times while work is being done in your house, and you want to be assured that the people working in your home can be trusted with your personal valuables. Ask about the contractor’s payment schedule. Agree on how much will be paid up-front. Be very cautious when a contractor asks for a large down payment. Do not make the final payment until all work is completed or inspections have been made. Are you building a new home or remodeling? Stop by the 2013 Home Show and speak with local, expert licensed contractors about attaining the home of your dreams. Visit the Home Builders Association of SWLA’s website: www.hbaswla.org to learn more about the Home Show and how to find a local licensed contractor to work on your home.

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January 2013

w me Sho o H e h . t oth #12 ee us at o s B e t a m o 3 C nd 1 ary 12 a u n a J n o

Mortgage Maintenance For many Americans who have a mortgage, their house is their primary investment. And just as a home requires routine inspection and maintenance, so does a home mortgage. “The most obvious way to manage your mortgage is to keep up with payments,” says Trevor C. Cooley, Mortgage Loan Coordinator and Assistant Vice President of City Savings Bank. “Failing to keep current with your payments can be costly in terms of late fees and lower credit scores, which can translate into higher costs when you need to borrow money or purchase insurance. The easiest solution may be to set up an automatic payment plan, or you can use your bank’s online bill pay services to automatically forward routine payments to your mortgage lender.” Remember to save receipts for home renovation projects. You may qualify for tax deductions for certain home improvements, such as energy-efficient windows and appliances, or various costs associated with a home sale, a mortgage refinancing or converting a primary home into an investment property. At the first sign of financial trouble, ask for help from your lender. Your mortgage lender has as much interest as you do in finding an early solution because a troubled loan presents significant regulatory and financial concerns for the lender. “In addition to arranging for debt counseling to help get you back on course, your lender may offer one of several solutions to support a payment recovery plan. They include temporarily reducing your monthly payments to cover only interest; deferring payments altogether and adding the unpaid amounts to the loan balance; increasing the length of the loan to lower the amount of the monthly payment; reducing the loan’s interest rate; and perhaps even reducing the balance owed on the loan,” explains Cooley. If financially possible, build a rainy-day fund. Cooley recommends saving up to as many as six mortgage payments, plus your property tax payments. He also urges his customers to consider paying off their mortgages faster if they can. Voluntary options for gradually accelerating the payoff of your loan may include increasing your payment each month or sending an additional (13th) mortgage payment each year. Note the extra payment is to be applied toward principal. For others, the option of re-financing to a shorter term might be a viable option. City Savings Bank will be one of more than 140 vendors at the Home Show on Jan. 12, 13 at the Lake Charles Civic Center. Admission is $5 for adults. Visit www.hbaswla.org for more information or email Vicki Broussard at vickihba3@ bellsouth.net.

We Have the Keys You Need

Whether you are buying or selling your home, there are questions around every corner. CENTURY 21 Bessette Realty and our staff of experienced agents have the answers. We’ve won numerous awards for superior service, sales excellence and community involvement. That’s what we’ve built our reputation on for over 20 years.

Bessette Realty, Inc. 474-2185 • century21-bessette.com

live chat

Each office independently owned and operated. January 2013

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Home & Family


by Kristy Armand

Does your kitchen need a facelift? Bathroom out of date? Need a new roof? Want to add a pool before spring? If you’ve been waiting for the right time – and the money – to make needed improvements in and around your home, you may be overlooking one simple solution: your own home equity. According to Karen Quinilty, vice president with Lakeside Bank, a home equity line of credit can be a great way to get the money you need for home improvement projects. She explains that a home equity line of credit is a revolving line of credit based on the amount of equity you have in your home. “When you purchase a home, you are basically purchasing an investment. This tangible piece of property is something that has a high value, both now and in the future. As you pay off your mortgage, you will continue to ‘own’ more parts of the home, until you have paid off the principal and own the entire value of the home investment. This is equity - the value of the home you own.” Most people spread their home investment over 20 or 30 years. It is these payments that provide your accumulated equity, the difference between how

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much your home is worth and how much you owe on your current mortgage or mortgages. For example, if you financed your home purchase for $250,000 and you’ve paid off $50,000 (not including interest), you have access to $50,000 worth of equity. This means you can re-borrow that amount of money (or less) to pay for other things in your life. That amount will then get rolled back into your loan payment plan or into a separate payment plan. This money can then be accessed through a line of credit that works much like a credit card. “Once your home equity line of credit is approved, you can borrow what you need, pay it back, and access again later,” says Quinilty. “An added benefit of using home equity for financing is that the interest is tax deductible. In fact, this is the only type of interest consumers pay that is still tax-deductible.”

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January 2013

Special Section: Home Show 2013 A home equity line of credit can be used for any type of expense: home improvement, vehicle purchase, college expenses and more. “It’s also a good idea to have this type of credit available as an emergency back-up plan,” says Quinilty. “Having it approved and available will give you access to funds if an unexpected need arises.” The main difference between a home equity line of credit and a standard home equity loan is the flexibility to keep the line of credit open. A home equity loan allows a person to borrow money from a financial institution using their home’s equity as collateral. “In essence, you are taking out a second mortgage when you get a home equity loan. You will get a set amount of money, which is repaid in monthly payments over a specified time period,” explains Quinilty. “The amount of the loan is set and when it is paid off, the loan is closed. You’ll have to apply again in order to access your equity if you want more funds. In contrast, once you qualify for a home equity line of credit, you can access available funds whenever you need them.” Quinilty says although both a home equity loan and a home equity line of credit are convenient and affordable ways to get needed funds, they aren’t for everyone. “Any time you tap into your home’s equity, you have to carefully evaluate the financing structure. Your home is a valuable asset and shouldn’t be put at risk. Make sure you don’t use all your equity – even if a lender is willing to let you do so. I usually recommend that you try to leave at least 20 percent of your equity, over and above your debt, untouched. This will help protect your investment in your home and make sure you don’t get in over your head.” The most practical way to use a home equity line of credit is to reinvest it in your home in the form of home improvements. “The key is to make sure whatever you do adds to your home’s value, which will only increase your equity for the future,” says Quinilty. “Kitchens and bathrooms are the critical areas to focus on in order to add real value to your investment, and to ensure that you get the most benefit from using your existing equity.” She also stresses that when using a home equity line of credit, you also have to be disciplined about making payments, just as you would with any other type of credit. “You don’t want to risk your home, or your ability to access your line of credit, due to missed or late payments. As with any type of loan or credit, don’t borrow more than you can afford.” For more information about a home equity line of credit, call Lakeside Bank at (337) 474-3766. Be sure to stop by and see them at the Home Show, booth #131.


Good Life

Nestled into 60 acres of scenic, natural beauty in the historic heart of Lake Charles, Walnut Grove is a traditional neighborhood development uniquely designed to look and feel as if it naturally evolved over the course of the last century. A variety of home styles that seamlessly blend traditional Louisiana architecture with modern amenities are available in this community that was built for connectivity, with a picturesque town square, wide open walkways, tranquil parks and the convenience of shops and restaurants just a short walk away.

West Sallier Street, Lake Charles www.walnutgrovetnd.com Call (337) 497-0825 for information on residential or commercial property in Walnut Grove. January 2013

Visit our booth at the home show on January 12 and 13. Booth #103

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Home & Family

add value to your home with landscaping “Even if your home is perfect on the inside, a bad view from the outside can literally turn people away. Landscaping can improve the value of your home quickly and economically,” says Peggie Dando, agent with Century 21 Bessette Realty. “Wise landscaping does not require vast amounts of cash to add significant value to your property. A little will go a long way.” Landscaping can be comparable to a new kitchen or bathroom renovation. According to the U.S. Homeowner Landscaping, Lawn Care and Tree Care Survey, conducted by the Gallup Organization, landscaping can add a seven to15 percent increase to your home’s value. A Clemson University study confirmed these findings, comparing equivalent homes with

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When trying to market your home, good first impressions are often the difference between a quick offer and no offer. Good curb appeal is critical. Buyers need to exit to their cars thinking this is the one.

“excellent”,“good” and “average” landscaping. The homes with “excellent” landscaping expected a sale price six to seven percent higher than the lawns with a “good” rating. Similar results showed that homes with “good” landscaping improved sale value by four to five percent versus homes with an “average” rating. A mature tree can significantly add to your home’s value, as well as cut utility costs. Jay Wilkinson of Wilkinson Tree Farm says, “A healthy tree increases in value with age, purifying our air, and saving energy by providing shade and protection from strong winds.” Contact a licensed arborist to help you properly plan for trees amongst your landscape. An arborist will help you determine which trees grow well in

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the soil and moisture of your neighborhood and will take into consideration potential tree height, canopy spread, sun and moisture requirements so you can avoid collisions with power lines and buildings. Plan to attend the 2013 Home Show on Jan. 12, 13 to speak with local, expert licensed contractors. Visit the Home Builders Association of SWLA’s website: www.hbaswla.org to learn more about the Home Show.

January 2013

Special Section: Home Show 2013

HOME SHOW VENDORS • A Door- Works, Inc. • A&A Installations • AAAbsolute Gutters • Able Energy • Acadian Brick & Stone • Acme Brick Company • Allstate Shaw- Day Insurance Agency • Apex Alarms • Aquatic Pools • Bailey’s Audio • Better Business Bureau • BMC Sales • Budget Blinds • Builders Sav-Mor • C&C Audio Video & Appliance • C&R Preferred Concrete • Calcasieu Parish Police Jury • Calcasieu Stone • CenterPoint • Century 21 Bessette • Century 21 Mike D. Bono

• Chief Purification • City Savings Bank • Coburn’s of LC • Coldwell Banker Gallerie Realty, LLC • Concrete Homes Plus • Creative Concrete • Creative Concrete by Ron • Creative Door & Window • CSE Federal Credit Union • Custom Iron by Josh • Cutco Sales/Service Professional • Discount Bedding • Doors Windows & More • Dunham Price • Dupont Sewer • East Aluminum • Easy Street Web Design • Energy Shield Insulators • Exterior Portfolio • Fender Homes • Fireside Stone • First Federal Bank

• First Federal Insurance • Flavin Realty • Frank Thompson Studio • Garage Solutions • Genset • Goodyear Custom Audio • Gulf Coast Carpets • Habitat for Humanity • Heritage Builders • Hixon’s Pest Control • Holiday Travel • IBERIABANK • J&J Exterminating • Jeff Davis Bank • Joseph’s Electrical Center • K&K Water • Kaymon Construction • Kitchen Craft • LA Concrete • LA Propane Dealers • LA Solaray • Lake Arthur Butane • Lake Charles American Press

• Lakeside Bank • LaMaison • Legends Development • Lifeshare Blood Center • Louisiana Mortgage • Manuel Builders • Mitchell Buildings • Moss Bluff Floors • National Wastewater Systems • New Creations • Port Aggregates • Richey’s 3-D Insulation • Sears Commercial Sales • Sherwin-Williams • Sight & Sound • Silverleaf Resorts • Sister’s Gourmet Nuts • Southern Marble • Southwest Louisiana Credit Union • Star Concrete Pumpers • State Farm Insurance Shayne Laughlin

• State Farm Insurance Chris Gaudet • Stine Lumber • Storm Guard of LA • Superior Windows • Surfaces Design • SWLA Lawn • Sylvan Special Systems • Tailored Living • Tax Assessor’s Office • Terminex • Tony Houseman Homes • Tub Docteur • USS Orleck Naval Museum • Vac Central • Walnut Grove • Water Purification • Wilkinson Tree Farm • Williams Wood

Come see us at the Home Show: Booth # 145 & 146

Old world craftsmanship New world design Across from Tractor Supply

Show Room NOW OPEN @ 222 Hwy 171 Suite A in Moss Bluff.

Indoor/Outdoor Fireplaces • Firepits • Indoor/Outdoor Kitchens • Floors • Patios • Waterfalls

Let our design experts help bring your project to life. Stone is our passion.


337-905-FIRE (3473) • www.firesidestonellc.com January 2013

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Home & Family

Exterminate Health Risks from


by Kristy Armand

You may think of household pests as just an annoyance, but they can also pose a risk to your health and that of your family. “Most people are aware of specific health risks associated with certain pests, such as the West Nile virus with mosquitoes and lyme disease with ticks,” says Robert Soileau, Manager of J&J Exterminating in Lake Charles. “But there are many other potential health problems – both minor and more serious – associated with common pests.” Here’s a closer look at the more common health risks associated with common pests:

Cockroaches The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) reports that one-in-five children in the United States have severe sensitivities to cockroach allergens, which increase the severity of asthma symptoms. These allergens are most commonly introduced in homes through cockroach saliva, droppings and the decomposing bodies of these pests. Cockroaches can also carry bacteria such as E coli and salmonella on their bodies, which can contaminate food, cooking equipment and food surfaces.

Rodents Rodents can enter a home through almost any opening or crack, even those that you may consider too small. Rodents pose a significant health risk because they serve as vectors, carrying bacteria such as salmonella, on their bodies and contaminating food sources, kitchen surfaces and equipment. Rodent droppings, often the first clue that you have an unwanted resident, can cause allergic reactions in human beings, as well as disease, including the potentially deadly Hantavirus.

28 www.thriveswla.com

Mosquitos The increased reports of West Nile Virus this year, combined with a warmer than normal fall season, have helped people realize that mosquitoes are not only a nuisance, but potentially a major health threat. In addition, to the potential for West Nile Virus, mosquitoes can also cause itchy, unsightly marks as well as severe allergic reactions.

Spiders Most spider bites occur when humans unintentionally press up against spiders and receive a defensive bite. The venom of most spiders in Southwest Louisiana is not harmful to humans. Very often, the person receiving the bite may not even notice it, or it may resemble a mosquito bite with a little swelling and itching. However, you should be aware of three poisonous spiders in our region: the brown recluse, the black widow and the brown widow. The venom of these species is very harmful and potentially deadly to humans, so it’s important to be on the lookout for these spiders, and to seek medical attention immediately if you think you may have been bitten by one.

Ticks Lyme disease, which is transmitted by ticks, has emerged as a major health risk in recent years. It is critical to be vigilant of ticks, especially if you are in wooded areas. Symptoms of Lyme disease include a “bull’s eye” rash around the bite, flu-like symptoms and extreme fatigue.

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Ants Ants are social insects, meaning if you spot one, there are many more to follow. Some, such as fire ants, can be dangerous to humans and pets, causing a nasty sting and possible allergic reaction. This reaction can be severe for some people.

January 2013

Stinging Insects Stinging pests send more than 500,000 people to the emergency room each year. These pests often use stinging as a way to protect their colonies or larvae from human beings who attempt to remedy an infestation on their own. This aggressiveness, combined with being disturbed, often means that these pests tend to sting repeatedly, which adds to the potential for greater skin irritation or a serious allergic reaction.

Fleas Fleas aren’t just a problem for pets. These pests feed on the blood of any warm-blooded body – including humans. Their bites cause itchy, unsightly marks and may cause an allergic reaction. Fleas tend to travel with mammals on the move, which can include not only people and their pets, but also rodents.

“If you are experiencing problems with any of the pests above, or if you just want to be proactive to make sure your home is not a potential site for an infestation, a pest control professional can provide a level of expertise and extermination technology to provide the best protection for your home,” says Soileau. “Year-round preventive pest control can help you protect your family from the health risk of pests.” For more information about pest control, call J&J Exterminating at 474-7377 or visit www.jjext.com. Look for J&J Exterminating at booth #39 at the Home Show.

K i m tAs si n mAKes mortgAge LoAns As eAsy As A, B, C. Finding the right mortgage loan may seem like a complicated task, but not when you turn to a professional like Kim Tassin. Kim walks her customers through the process

Advising them on the most appropriate options with Benefits that stand the test of time, while taking them through the Closing with the care and attention every homebuyer deserves. With nearly 30 years of banking experience, Kim Tassin will make your home buying experience as pleasant and as simple as A, B, C. Merchants & Farmers Bank offers a variety of mortgage types, including FHA, VA, Rural

Development, 30-Year Conventional, and 15-Year Conventional. Call Kim at 477-3638 to begin your mortgage loan process today.

4091 nelson road Lake Charles, LA 70605 January 2013

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Kim tAssin 337.477.3638 www.thriveswla.com


Home & Family

Turn up the t a e H e h t p u when you Turn by Kristy Armand

Our winter weather may not involve the snow, ice and below freezing temperatues northern states experience, but it does get cold enough to have the fireplaces blazing, space heaters humming and electric blankets warming up the bed. And while this sounds nice and cozy, Mason Lindsay with the Safety Council of Southwest Louisiana, says staying warm in the cold weather requires a heightened degree of caution. “The primary cause of most home fires is the improper use of home-heating equipment.”

Lindsay says the majority of heating equipment fires start as a result of misuse or improper maintenance. “When purchasing new heating equipment, be sure to select products that have been tested and approved by an independent testing laboratory. Install and maintain heating equipment correctly, and be sure it complies with local fire building codes.” The Safety Council offers the additional fire prevention tips for the winter season: • Replace old electric blankets. Almost all fires caused by electric heating blankets are caused by those older than ten years. • Replace any blanket where the embedded heating wires have been displaced or damaged. Check by holding the blanket up to light. You shouldn’t see any of the wires touching each other. • Never use a range or an oven as a supplemental heating device. Not only is it a safety hazard, it can be a source of potentially toxic fumes. • Frozen water pipes? Never try to thaw them with a blow torch or other open flame. The pipe could conduct the heat and ignite the wall structure inside the wall space. Use hot water or a UL-labeled device such as a hand held dryer for thawing. • Space heaters must be placed at least 36 inches away from anything that can burn, such as wallpaper, bedding, clothing, pets and people. • Never leave space heaters operating when you are not in the room or while sleeping, and don’t leave children or pets unattended with space heaters. 30 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

Loan The

Will Be the Easy Part

of Your Home

Improvement Project

When you decide to tackle a home improvement project, you’ll be making lots of decisions. Ceramic or travertine tiles? Stucco or brick for the archway? Sporty, sleepy or aviary blue for the dining room? We’ll make one decision a simple one. Choose Lakeside Bank for your personal or home equity loan to finance your renovations. Our low, competitive rates, experienced lenders and our ability to make quick, local decisions will help you get the financing you need stop waiting and start improving. Give us a call today to learn more, and join the migration to Lakeside, the region’s fastest growing bank.

Visit the Lakeside Bank booth #131 at the Home Show January 12 and 13.

• When using an electric heater, be sure not to overload the circuit. Only use extension cords which have the necessary rating to carry the amp load. • Avoid using electrical space heaters in bathrooms, or other areas where they may come in contact with water. • If you have a liquid fueled space heater, use only the fuel recommended by the manufacturer. Never use gasoline or any other substitute fuel, because the wrong fuel could burn hotter than the equipment’s design limits and cause a fire. • Have your chimney inspected by a professional prior to the start of every heating season and cleaned if necessary. • Always protect your home and your family by using a sturdy screen when burning fires. • Never use flammable liquids in a fireplace or wood stove. • Never discard hot ashes inside or near the home. Place them in a metal container outside and well away from the house.

The way banking should be.

Lindsay adds that one of the simplest things people can do to practice fire safety in the winter – and throughout the year – is changing smoke detector batteries routinely. He said one big mistake people make is taking the batteries out of the detectors when they chirp in the middle of the night. More often than not, they never put new batteries back in. “Be sure every area and floor of your home has a working smoke alarm, and be sure to check and clean it on a monthly basis.” “Another important thing to do is to develop and practice regular fire drills in the home,” says Lindsay, “with a designated meeting place for the family away from the home once everyone is safely outside.” For more information about home safety issues, call the Safety Council at 436-3354 or visit www.safetycouncilswla.org.

January 2013

4735 Nelson Rd., Lake Charles 474-3766 • LakesideBanking.com

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Home & Family

Winning the Homework Battle by Katie Harrington

The start of a new year signals a time of new beginnings for many and for school-aged children, it marks the halfway point in the school year. By now the newness of school has completely worn off and trying to get motivated to finish the year strong is a challenge after all the excitement of the holiday season has passed. But with state-mandated testing on the horizon, it is more important than ever for kids to break out of their winter hibernation and attack their studies and homework with a new enthusiasm. According to Renee A. Reina, director of Sylvan Learning Center in Lake Charles, the first step to winning the homework battle involves getting organized and creating an atmosphere in your home that encourages learning. “Like most things involving children, a good routine is a must. Set aside a specific time and place for homework and studying. In addition to getting their homework completed on time, your child will also learn the value of time management.” Reina also suggests that while your child is working, you can take this time to sit and work on your own paperwork. This shows them that you value the importance of “work time.” It’s also key to make sure your child’s study space has the necessary supplies. “Make sure their supply of paper, pencils, erasers, etc., is completely stocked,” Reina says. “This will prevent delays and distractions caused by having to

locate needed materials.” If getting your child to complete their homework was a challenge during the first part of the year, then consider setting up a reward system for this half. “One way to do this is to deposit change into a small change jar every time homework is completed,” says Reina. “Once the jar is full, treat the entire family to something everyone will enjoy.” As your child gets older and the homework load increases, it is important to have a study plan in place. “Have them tackle their most challenging assignment first, while they are most focused,” Reina adds. “Once this assignment is complete, move on to the easier ones and then, as a reward, end the homework session with a fun activity like coloring or drawing.” Finally, take your child’s learning to the next level by helping them find real-world applications for what they are being taught in school. “You can help enhance your child’s math and reading skills by letting them help you cook dinner – they can read recipes or labels, and learn measurements and fractions,” says Reina. “Also, search the Internet with your child to learn more about topics they are covering in school.” For more information on how to help your child win the homework battle, visit www.sylvanlearning.com or call 474-9998.

One of the

C o ld es t O ld es t a n d in Festivals

! Louisiana

LOUPic!Sk y!oAurNPaAssion

32 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

Trim your Heating Bill this Winter

by Allie Mariano

When it gets cold outside, it is tempting to crank up the thermostat, but a toasty home can add a fortune to your monthly utility bill. There are a few simple ways to trim your winter heating bill and make your home more energy efficient. “Make sure your furnace is cleaned and serviced at least once a year by a qualified professional,” recommend Scott Davis and Mark Morrison of Air Conduit, LLC. An improperly installed furnace can also contribute to high energy costs. Davis and Morrison say they frequently encounter attics that are not insulated, which allows massive amounts of heat to escape the house. Here are few other tips for saving money this winter. • Invest in a programmable thermostat, so you can easily control when your home is heated. • Set the thermostat to 68 degrees while you’re home for the most energy savings. You can always put on a sweater and warm socks if you’re cold.

• Lower the thermostat 10 degrees while asleep or at work. At night, put an extra blanket on the bed. Do not set it below 55 degrees; otherwise the pipes can freeze. • If you already have attic insulation, make sure it is at least seven inches thick. If not, add another layer. Insulation can be as cheap as 50 cents a square foot. • Check for air leaks around windows and doors. Use weather-stripping to seal the moveable parts on windows and doors. Use caulk to seal cracks around doorframes or window panes, as well as other cracks in your home. • Open the blinds and curtains during the day so the sun can heat the room. Close them at night to prevent heat from escaping. • If you have a fireplace, make sure the damper is closed. The chimney can allow hot air to escape and cold air to enter your house easily. • Bundle up.


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LUNDY, LUNDY, SOILEAU & SOUTH, LLP (800) 259-1005 • (337) 439-0707 501 Broad Street, Lake Charles

Serving Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi and Arkansas

www.lundylawllp.com January 2013

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MATT LUNDY Attorney Member of Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee



Home & Family

Negotiating a Successful Real Estate Deal by Christine Fisher

Buying or selling a home boils down to reaching a compromise. In most cases, concessions are made in an effort to agree on terms such as price, time frame and condition of the house. “Whether you’re the buyer or the seller, everyone wants a good deal. There are things you can do to tip the scale in your favor and have a good position during negotiations,” said Larry Turner, REALTOR with Century 21 Bessette Realty. If the market is full of overpriced homes, buyers will have the upper hand. The amenities and location won’t matter as much if a buyer knows the house could be priced lower in order to sell. On the other hand, if there aren’t many homes for sale in desirable neighborhoods, buyers are usually willing to make more concessions. “The market can dictate who has the upper hand. The spring and fall are usually busy home buying seasons with plenty of homes on the market giving buyers the upper hand on getting a good deal,” said Turner. 34 www.thriveswla.com

As the saying goes, the devil is in the details and real estate is no exception. At face value, it may seem as though two homes are comparable, in good neighborhoods and priced the same, but the deals could be very far apart. One owner may have agreed to several requests from the buyer, such as including the refrigerator, painting the interior of the home, and providing a home warranty, while the owner of the other house made no concessions. “The buyer in the first example is in the driver’s seat during negotiations. They’ve found a motivated seller and are able to get a few upgrades included in the deal,” Turner explained.

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January 2013

Look for leverage. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell, do a little homework to see where you might be the most competitive. If you’re one of four people to make an offer on a home, the owner has no incentive to make any concessions so, unless you’re determined to get that particular piece of property, you may consider moving on to another home in order to have more leverage.

Sellers should look for buyers who are pre-qualified. This means they’ve been to a lender and have completed preliminary loan paperwork and have a realistic idea of how much they can afford to borrow. This doesn’t guarantee them the loan, but it shows they are serious about buying. “Transactions can still fail if the home doesn’t appraise high enough or if there is a problem with the title, but the process is moved ahead a few steps if the buyer is pre-qualified,” he said.

Doing a little homework will help during negotiation time. While the goal isn’t to gouge, knowing a few key details can help you get a good deal. Is the seller looking to move quickly due to a job transfer? Is the upcoming start of school an incentive for a buyer to want to move now in order to be settled before school begins?

Keeping your options open is key when it comes to negotiating. When emotions get in the way, you’ve lost the upper hand. “You may decide that you’ll spend more to get your dream home, and that’s fine if you can afford it; but if you’re looking to get a great deal, you can’t let emotions lead negotiations,” explained Turner.

Above all, remember the goal. “If you’re wanting to sell your home, carefully look at every reasonable offer, even if it is below what you had in mind. Deals fall through all the time because one party is not willing to compromise. Being flexible and reasonable will help smooth out your negotiations,” said Turner. “That’s where a licensed realtor can help. We know the market, what’s available, and how you can concede in one area but come out ahead in another. Our goal is to get the best deal for you.” Buying or selling a home is a big decision. In most situations, both parties give a little, allowing them to each get a fair deal and move forward with their dreams.

Heart Disease


At West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital, our Cardiology team doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to treating heart disease and heart attack. In the first three quarters of 2012, we averaged treating heart attack patients 25 minutes faster than that recommended by the American Heart Association. We’re proud to be leading the way in advanced heart care in Southwest Louisiana. The skill of our 13 cardiologists, the experience and compassion of our nurses, and a facility that houses the most modern equipment found locally, is why your heart is in the best of hands at West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital. For more information on our Cardiology services, please call (337) 527-4189.

701 Cypress Street, Sulphur


Visit Century 21 Bessette Realty at booth #12 at the Home Show.

January 2013

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Money & Career

Financial Tips for Twenty-Somethings

by Christine Fisher

A rite of passage for young adults is establishing their own financial independence. The moves made during this time can set the tone for future security. Twenty-somethings today are not as financially independent as previous generations. Studies show that many young adults continue to rely on their parents for housing and paying some of their bills. “This could be due to poor decisions right out of high school or college, or it can be something beyond the young person’s control. But, knowing how to properly manage money is a necessary skill toward financial independence,” said John W. Fusilier, CEO with First National Bank DeRidder. Taking smart steps during the early years of adulthood will lead to greater reward and independence later. “Many young adults stumble into a pattern when it comes to handling their finances,” said Fusilier. “They may not have been taught how to take care of their money and so they do what they can and figure it out as they go along. That can work for some people, but it can trap others who suddenly find themselves in significant debt and no clue on how to climb out.” Often, young adults don’t realize that they need to establish credit and a good payment history before they will be approved for major loans, such as cars or homes. “We talk so much about avoiding credit card debt that some young people think it is bad to have a credit card. Having the credit card isn’t the problem; it’s having the debt,” Fusilier explained. “You have to have a credit history in order for a bank or lending institution to lend you money. They need to see that you

36 www.thriveswla.com

have the means to repay the loan and the personal reputation to meet your obligations.” This doesn’t mean to overextend your credit, but it’s a good idea to charge some items and pay the credit card bill in full at the end of the month. This keeps credit history current. Once the credit card is obtained, use it wisely. Even though an item could be purchased on credit by paying the minimum credit card payment, “if you don’t have the cash to pay for it in full, don’t buy it,” said Fusilier. “It’s financially destructive to pay interest on credit card items. Pay the bill off every month. Paying interest on a sweater or toaster doesn’t do you any favors.” Tracking expenses is an exercise every young adult should do. It can be as simple as jotting down what you buy for a few months or as intricate as a spreadsheet with categories of spending. Choose whatever method makes sense to you so you can get a clear look at how your money is spent and ensure that your monthly income is more than your monthly expenses. Set up a savings account specifically for emergencies. “Ideally, if you could work up to having six to nine months of living expenses set aside, you’ll be much more comfortable and confident that you could survive should something happen to your job, your health, or that of your spouse’s, if you are married. Knowing you have that cushion can help you sleep at night,” Fusilier said. “It will probably take a few years, depending on your income and expenses, to reach this goal, but steadily, over time, it will happen. Trimming expenses can help you attain it faster.” Even though a twentysomething has the world by the tail, smart young adults will begin to save for retirement as soon as possible. Once college and any advanced degrees are earned and

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January 2013

the first real job is landed, begin saving. If your company matches your contributions to a 401(k) retirement plan, make sure you are putting in the maximum allowed to take full advantage. “Companies have scaled back their matching contributions and many employees do not have the option. Whatever your situation is, set aside a steady amount into an account earmarked for retirement,” said Fusilier. “You have the benefit of time. It’s surprising how even a small amount set aside each month can grow into a significant amount.” To trim everyday expenses, keep your goals in mind. Friends who continually beg you to spend more than you’re comfortable spending don’t have your best interest in mind. Stay within your allotment for entertainment dollars. A disciplined approach with clear goals in mind for the future will help put young adults on the path to a solid financial future. For more information, visit fnbderidder.com or call (337) 463-6231.

There’s never been a better time. There’s never been a better place.


Now leasing build to suit for restaurants, retail, medical facilities and professional offices.

5656 Nelson Rd., Lake Charles | 337.421.6200 | OakCrossing.net January 2013

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Money & Career

How to Build Your Nest Egg with Fewer Twigs by Kristy Armand

We all look forward to the retirement years, but when they finally arrive, many Americans find themselves with less money than they expected. The downturn of the national economy several years ago caused many people to lose significant value in their retirement savings. It’s also common to underestimate the costs of retirement, or to simply realize that not enough money was put away in the first place. “One big thing to do is to look at your retirement plans a few years before you plan to retire,” says Mark Eckard, LPL Financial Advisor with Rau Financial Group. “If you see that your nest egg is smaller than it needs to be, there are some things you can do to stretch your golden year dollars now, so that you can still achieve the retirement lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of. “ For example, if you’ve been setting aside money in individual retirement accounts, make sure you understand the tax implications for withdrawing the money. Each IRA works differently and tapping into the right pool of cash can sometimes make

your money stretch. Determining which pool is the right one can be complicated, however, and may require the insight of a qualified financial professional. “Accounts like Roth IRAs and traditional IRAs work differently and the rules are rarely simple. One investment vehicle taxes withdrawals, while another doesn’t. But the answer isn’t cut-and-dried. Finding out where and when to safely save and withdraw your money depends greatly on market conditions and tax rates, so it’s important to determine an answer with the help of someone you trust,” Eckard said. “You should also consider investments that guarantee income for life.

This removes the stress of worrying about market changes and running out of money.” Another way to make your money last is to put retirement on hold to bulk up investments, including Social Security benefits. Eckard says each additional year you work adds another year of earnings to your Social Security record, and higher lifetime earnings may result in higher benefits when you retire. According to the Social Security Administration, each year a person delays retiring and accessing their Social Security, their monthly benefit when they do retire increases in value by about eight percent.

Our agents stand ready to help you manage both your personal and business insurance needs. Let us be your first choice. Call today!

Personal • Commercial • Life • Health

Pam Thompson

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Insurance products are not insured by any federal government agency. Not FDIC insured; not guaranteed by the bank. Insurance is offered through First Federal Insurance Services, LLC, a registered agency in the state of Louisiana. First Federal Insurance Services, LLC is a service corporation of First Federal Bank of Louisiana. 38 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

“People are living longer and aging better, so for many people, putting off retirement for several years isn’t a tremendous sacrifice,” Eckard said. “It’s one of the simplest ways to allow your retirement savings to grow.” In addition to putting off retirement for a few years, you may also consider putting off small luxuries that cost you money. “This advice could work for anyone – not just those who are building up for retirement, but anyone who wants to save money,” Eckard said. “There are many habits we have that cost us a lot financially, and we’re often unaware of exactly how much. It may not seem so at the time because the initial cost is small, but all those dollars and cents add up. Eating out is a prime example. If you go out for lunch just three times a week, you are likely spending a hundred dollars or more each month. Buying name-brand groceries instead of generic brands can also cost unnecessary dollars, as can lavish vacations and other perks like coffee shop coffee.” According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average couple that earns more than $70,000 annually spends $3,000 on travel and more than $4,500 on restaurants every year. That’s about eight thousand dollars that could be going into your retirement nest, Eckard said. Cutting back can also apply to your big-

ticket items. Opt for a practical, low-cost vehicle instead of the fully-loaded luxury car. Or if you want those extra perks, consider buying a used luxury car instead. Downsize your home. Remember, retirement is about rest, relaxation, family, leisure and travel. You don’t need a huge home or $40,000 vehicle for that. “The best way to figure out how to make savings more substantial is to put everything on paper, preferably with the help of a trusted financial professional. You want to do more than map out a budget – you want to figure out where you’re spending your money, where you’re investing your money, how much those investments are worth, how much you have vested in Social Security, what your goals are for retirement, and how much money you’ll need to achieve those goals,” Eckard said. “Obviously, this kind of planning takes a considerable amount of time and effort, and it requires a realistic look at your financial situation. But at the end of the day, it’s worth it. When you’ve worked hard your adult life, you deserve to spend your retirement years the way you want.” For more information about retirement planning or to schedule a consultation, call Rau Financial Group at 480-3835 or visit www.raufinancialgroup.com.


MAKES MORTGAGE LOANS AS EASY AS A,B,C. Finding the right mortgage loan may seem like a complicated task, but not when you turn to a professional like Caleb Waldmeier. Caleb walks his customers through the process

Advising them on the most appropriate options with Benefits that stand the test of time, while taking them through the Closing with the care and attention every homebuyer deserves. With 7 years of banking experience, Caleb will make your home buying experience as pleasant and as simple as A, B, C. Merchants & Farmers Bank offers a variety of mortgage types, including FHA, VA, Rural Development,

30-Year Conventional, and 15-Year Conventional.

Call Caleb at 479-2086 to begin your mortgage loan process today.

4091 Nelson Road Lake Charles, LA 70605 January 2013

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CALEB WALDMEIER 337.479.2086 www.thriveswla.com


Money & Career

The Tax Man is Coming– Start Prepping Now Tax preparation is a year-round process so if you haven’t started organizing everything you will need to file your 2012 taxes by April 15, then it is time to get started. Unless you have a significant change, like getting married or divorced, having a baby or buying or selling a house, then your tax information is likely to stay relatively the same each year. Look back at last year’s return and see what documents you were required to have. Create a tabbed file with a list of those necessary documents. Begin filing away the ones you have and then when W-2’s, 1099’s and other important tax documents begin to arrive, you will already have a designated place to file them. If you have electronic files that you will need for your filing, create a designated place on your computer to store these and begin downloading them as soon as they become available. This handy checklist from www.turbotax. intuit.com will help you keep track of everything you will need.

Personal information:

Who’s filing and who is covered in your tax return? Make sure you have Social Security numbers and dates of birth for you, your spouse and your dependents:

Information about your income: • Income from jobs: forms W-2 for you and your spouse • Investment income - various forms 1099 (-INT, -DIV, -B, etc.), K-1s, stock option information • Income from state and local income tax refunds and/or unemployment: forms 1099-G • Alimony received • Business or farming income - profit/loss statement, capital equipment information • If you use your home for business - home size, office size, home expenses, office expenses. 40 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

• • • •

IRA/pension distributions - forms 1099-R, 8606 Rental property income/expense - profit/Loss statement, rental property suspended loss information Social Security benefits - forms SSA-1099 Income from sales of property - original cost and cost of improvements, escrow closing statement, cancelled debt information (form 1099-C) • Prior year installment sale information - forms 6252, principal and Interest collected during the year, SSN and address of payer • Other miscellaneous income - jury duty, gambling winnings, Medical Savings Account (MSA), scholarships, etc.

Adjustments to your income:

These items can reduce the amount of your income that is taxed, increasing your tax refund or lowering the amount you owe. • IRA contributions • Energy credits • Student loan interest • Medical Savings Account (MSA) contributions • Moving expenses • Self-employed health insurance payments • Keogh, SEP, SIMPLE and other self-employed pension plans • Alimony paid • Educator expenses

Itemized tax deductions and credits:

There are a number of deductions and credits to help lower your tax burden, which means more money in your pocket. You’ll need the following documentation to make sure you get all the deductions and credits you deserve. • Advance Child Tax Credit payment • Child care costs - provider’s name, address, tax id, and amount paid • Education costs - forms 1098-T, education expenses • Adoption costs - SSN of child, legal, medical, and transportation costs • Home mortgage interest and points you paid - Forms 1098 • Investment interest expense • Charitable donations - cash amounts and value of donated property, miles driven, and out-of-pocket expenses • Casualty and theft losses - amount of damage, insurance reimbursements • Other miscellaneous tax deductions - union dues, unreimbursed employee expenses (uniforms, supplies, seminars, continuing education, publications, travel, etc.) • Medical and dental expenses

Taxes you’ve paid:

Properly documenting the taxes you’ve already paid can keep you from overpaying. • State and local income taxes paid • Real estate taxes paid • Personal property taxes - vehicle license fee based on value

Other information:

• Estimated tax payment made during the year, prior year refund applied to current year, and any amount paid with an extension to file. • Direct deposit information - routing and account numbers • Foreign bank account information - location, name of bank, account number, peak value of account during the year January 2013

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Money & Career

Be a

Winning Team Member by Kristy Armand

When it comes to choosing a candidate for a new job or a promotion, employers consistently say they want a team player, but what does that really mean in a business setting? How can an employee prove they are valuable to the team? Most people have probably been asked to join a project team at some point in time – whether it was back in school or on the job. Working with a group of peers can be fun, as teams become infused with camaraderie and a shared sense of mission. But being a group participant can also be challenging, as individual strengths and weaknesses, personalities, work styles and goals come into conflict. Chauntelle LeJeune, MA, LMFT, LPC, therapist with Solutions Conseling & EAP says teams in the workplace are usually created to achieve a shared company goal or solve a specific problem. “By taking advantage of a group’s collective knowledge, energy and creativity, the team can accomplish much more in less time than a single person working alone. That’s what the cliche ‘There’s no I in team’ is referring to. Once you become part of a team, you have to shift your thinking from being self-focused to concentrating on what is best for the group.” Sports teams are perfect examples of how many players working together can achieve much more than one individual. Not everybody has the passing skill to be a quarterback, for example, but without the offensive line protecting him by blocking the defensive team, the quarterback would never have the time and space to throw an accurate pass. The players count on each other to use their individual skills, and then work together to give the team a better chance to win. LeJeune says this same principle applies to teams in the workplace. “You have to be able to contribute your individual skills, recognize the skills of others and put the team goals ahead of your own personal agenda. This is an essential skill in the business world. Demonstrating that you have the ability to work well with others can have a major impact on your career.”

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She offers the following strategies for developing your “team player” skills:

Know your strengths. Every team member has something valuable to contribute and it’s important that you find a role within your team that allows you to do what you do well. Check your ego at the door. No one wants to be on a team with someone who considers himself the smartest person in the room. Don’t join a group boasting about your past successes or unmatched skill in a specific area. Be humble, contribute when appropriate and let your teammates discover your strengths on their own.

Be flexible. You’ll also have to set aside – at least temporarily – your preferred work habits and adopt the work practices of the team. Learn to appreciate other’s work styles and how they may compliment your own. Adapt to change. Working with a group of people means that not everything will proceed smoothly. Setbacks will occur, goals will be altered, and the team may have to change directions. Don’t let these obstacles discourage you. Adapt quickly, make needed adjustments and get back on track.

Meet deadlines. When you are responsile for one part of a larger project, as is often the case when you’re on a work team, your delay means a delay for the entire team. Don’t be that person who holds up progress for everyone.

participating through listening. As a result, they’re usually the ones who are the most informed about the details of the group project.

Communicate and contribute. Be involved and active within the group. Share information and resources. Come to meetings prepared and ready to lend your skills and experience whenever possible.

Be able to accept constructive criticism. Accept critiques and contradictory input with an open mind and be willing to explore alternative solutions instead of being defensive. View this as an opportunity to learn and to improve the end result. When offering critique to others, do so in a positive and respectful manner.

Be positive. Don’t complain, delay or avoid the tough assignments. A positive attitude will help you and other team members stay focused and productive, and will establish your reputation for being an enjoyable person to work with. “Teams are usually created to solve difficult problems, and being a good team player is not always easy, but it can be your chance to shine,” says LeJeune. “Look at teamwork as not only a challenge, but a great opportunity for your career.” Solutions offers a wide variety of workshops dealing with workplace issues. For more information, call (337) 310-2822 or visit www. solutions-eap.org.

Listen. In a team environment, there are always going to be people who compete to be heard. Those who listen well are rarer and potentially much more valuable. The best team members don’t always need to be heard; they’re comfortable

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

JD gets me

Teeth Whitening Cosmetic Dentistry Crown & Bridge Extractions implant crowns Root Canals Dentures Fillings Dental Emergencies

Michelle E. Swift, DDS Charles S. Mackey, DDS

JD Gets Me


Whether starting a new business or buying equipment for your current one, we’re here for life’s big moments as well as your everyday needs. As a community bank committed to making loans to qualified applicants, our personalized service, expert advisors, and flexible terms make it easy to get you up and running.



January 2013 12JDB015_SmallBusiness_REV1_Thrive_5.25x9.875.indd 1

1333 Oak Park Blvd. Lake Charles, LA

1.800.789.5159 jdbank.com

Thrive Magazine for Better Living 7/12/12




Money & Career All you need to know to stay in the know! Jeff Davis Breaks Ground Jeff Davis Bank broke ground on two branches in Lake Charles. The new Big Lake branch will be located at the corner of Big Lake Road and Country Club Road and the new Morganfield branch will be located at 4989 East McNeese Street in Lake Charles. The Big Lake location will also serve as headquarters for the bank’s Wealth Management division, while Morganfield will be home to Jeff Davis’ Mortgage Department. For more information, visit www.jdbank.com or call (800) 789-5159.

City of Lake Charles Holds Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting for New Transit Customer Service Center The City of Lake Charles held a grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony at the newly completed City of Lake Charles Transit Customer Service Center located at 1155 Ryan Street. The Transit Customer Service Center provides daily service to five fixed routes and two para-transit routes. The Mayor Randy Roach cuts the ribbon at the grand opening event. hours of operation for buses are 5:45 am - 5:45 pm, Monday through Friday, and the administrative office hours are 8 am - 5 pm, Monday through Friday.

Imperial Calcasieu Surgical Center Receives Joint Commission Re-accreditation Imperial Calcasieu Surgical Center has been awarded The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for demonstrating compliance with national standards for health care quality and safety. This is the second accreditation award for the Center, which opened three years ago. Unlike hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers are not required to participate in the Joint Commission review process, but the physician owners voluntary sought this rigorous evaluation. Imperial Calcasieu Surgical Center is the only Joint Commission-accredited surgery center in the region and one of only a handful in Louisiana. The facility features six surgical suites, two minor procedure rooms, state-of-the-art surgical equipment, integrated technology, electronic medical records, and a wide variety of waiting area amenities. Surgical services are provided for patients of all ages, and surgical specialties available include ENT, cosmetic, ophthalmology, orthopaedic, pain management, podiatry, hand and spine.   The Center is located at 1757 Imperial Blvd. in Lake Charles. Additional information is available at www.icsurg.com or by calling 312-2832.

L to R: SWLA Economic Development Alliance President and CEO George Swift; bank board member Daryl Burckel; bank board Chairman Dan Donald; Lake Charles City Councilman Mark Eckard; Lake Charles Mayor Randy Roach; bank Chief Operating Officer Carly Leonards; bank President and CEO Boyd Boudreaux; architect Jeff Kudla; bank board members Terry Terrebonne, Andrew Cormier, Ray Crochet, Vic Stelly; former bank board Chairman Allen Medus.

Overuse Injuries will be Discussed at Upcoming Seminar

L to R: Roxanne and Troy Trahan of Trahan Construction; architect, Jeff Kudla; SWLA Economic Development Alliance President and CEO George Swift; bank board member, Ray Crochet; bank board Chairman, Dan Donald; bank Chief Operating Officer, Carly Leonards; bank President and CEO, Boyd Boudreaux; bank board members, Vic Stelly and Andrew Cormier; former bank Chairman, Allen Medus; bank board member, Terry Terrebonne.

New Location for Ultimate Performance Office Ultimate Performance Sports and Rehab has moved to 646 W. McNeese Street. The phone number is (337) 421-0010. Kyle Daigle, DC, and Jeremy Ward, DC, provide a unique combination of chiropractic, physiotherapy and clinical nutrition. They treat conditions such as pain in the knees, Jeremy Ward, DC and Kyle Daigle, DC back, shoulder and neck, as well as disc injuries, sciatica problems and more. They also work with athletes in all sports to improve performance, strength and stamina. A complete list of their services can be found at www.uperformance.com. 44 www.thriveswla.com

Steven Hale, MD, orthopaedic specialist, will be the speaker at “Overcome Overuse Injuries,” a free community seminar on Tuesday, January 29, at Center for Orthopaedics in Lake Charles. The event will begin at 5:30 pm. Overuse injuries are caused by repetitive tasks, forceful exertions, vibrations, and sustained or awkward positions. Examples of activities that Steven Hale, MD can lead to these types of injuries include using a computer at work, operating heavy equipment, lifting, running, jumping, woodwork, sewing or playing a musical instrument, just to name a few. Overuse injuries include carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis or golfer’s elbow, pitching elbow, runner’s knee, jumper’s knee, Achilles tendinitis, and shin splints. At the seminar, Dr. Hale will discuss the most common overuse injuries, along with prevention strategies and treatment options. Call 721-2903 or register online in the event section of www.centerfortho.com. Center for Orthopaedics in Lake Charles is located at 1747 Imperial Blvd.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

New Service Hopes to Curtail Drinking and Driving It’s an all too common situation, especially during this time of the year when holiday parties make way for Mardi Gras balls and celebrations. You’ve attended an event, had a few drinks and you know you really shouldn’t get behind the wheel, but you don’t have a designated driver. You could call a cab, but you need your car the next morning and won’t have time to come back for it. Louisiana Designated Drivers, a new nonprofit in the area, presents a solution to local party-goers that will get them and their cars home safely. “Our main objective is to save lives,” says Pat Hogan, founder. “We do this by safely driving intoxicated people home with their cars. Our goal is to expand our service statewide and then nationwide so that we can save thousands of lives.” It is a simple process; you simply give them a call and your insured driving team comes to meet you. One driver drives you home in your vehicle and the other driver follows in their vehicle. “For the cost of a cab, we can get you home safely,” Hogan says. “Since our organization is a registered 501 (c) 3 corporation, using our service is also 100 percent tax-deductible.” For more information on Louisiana Designated Drivers, a registered program of DrinkingandDriving.org, call 656-5351 or visit www.drinkinganddriving.org.

January 2013

Thrive Magazine for Better Living




1,626 Miles

17.79 Inches

size of the Mirai, the world’s smallest car

distance a couple traveled in their diesel-powered Volkswagen Passat before having to refuel, an 84.1 miles per gallon average

The Huffington Post

1 Billion

Christian Science Monitor

estimated number of cars traveling the roads today World-O-Meters

10 YEARS average age of a car on American roads before it is traded-in ABC News


number of cars produced in the world in a single year World-O-Meters

46 www.thriveswla.com

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

it’s 2013.

Get Healthy. Get Checked.

Start with your primary care physician. If you don’t have one, you need one. It’s essential that you find one you are comfortable with, who knows your medical history, and is connected to a top notch health care system.

Abhishek Agarwal, MD Family Medicine

Byran Barootes, MD Family Medicine

Louise Becnel, MD Internal Medicine

Craig Broussard, MD Internal Medicine

Brian Clements, MD Internal Medicine

Jarmon Comeaux, MD Internal Medicine

Brian Harrell, MD Family Medicine

Edward Hebert, MD Internal Medicine

W. Gerry Hebert, MD Internal Medicine

Susan Ieyoub, MD Internal Medicine

Susan Jones, MD Internal Medicine

Peter Karam, MD Internal Medicine

Ameer Khan, MD Family Medicine

Mir Khan, MD Internal Medicine

George Kohatsu, MD Family Medicine

Mark Lafuria, MD Internal Medicine

Alan LeBato, MD Family Medicine

Ronald Lewis, Jr., MD Internal Medicine

Gerald Mouton, MD Family Medicine

David Muguku, MD Family Medicine

Danielle Null, MD Family Medicine

Tuananh Pham, MD Family Medicine

Cristian Romero, MD Internal Medicine

E. J. Soileau, MD Family Medicine

Lynn Speight, MD Internal Medicine


call 1-800-494-LCMH (5264) • January 2013

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

www.lcmh.com/mmg www.thriveswla.com


Places & Faces

New Development Has Historic Roots by Kristy Armand

photos provided by McNeese Archives

Imagine a simpler time; a slower pace; a more connected way of life. Friends both young and old walk along a shaded lane toward the river. Courting couples take long, romantic buggy rides around the lake. Fishermen cast their lines in the slow-moving river. Families enjoy a Sunday afternoon picnic in the shade along the water.

That was the original Walnut Grove at the turn of the last century. From the Victorian era in the late 1800s, through the year 1926, Walnut Grove, located along the Calcasieu riverfront, was one of the most significant social gathering places for residents of Lake Charles. It was a serene oasis of natural beauty, perfumed by a wall of Cherokee roses, shaded by Cypress trees draped with Spanish

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Moss and bordered by an impressive grove of black walnut trees that gave the area its name. In the mid 1920s, the Port of Lake Charles took over the property and this scenic area took on a new and important role for the region’s growth and development.

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Fast forward 100 years and there is a new Walnut Grove being developed very near the site of the original location in Lake Charles. It all began with a storm called Rita. The Lawton offices in Sulphur were destroyed by the storm, and the company, which had already been planning a mixed-use neighborhood, began to look for a new corporate home as well. Their search led them in an unexpected direction, one that linked the past to the future in a very unique way. “As we researched and refined our ideas, we were intrigued by the authenticity and functionality of a different type of development, one that incorporated the principles of New Urbanism,” says Gus Schram III, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Walnut Grove Development, L.L.C. “New Urbanism has captured the attention of city planners, residents and neighborhoods across the country for decades. We wanted to bring that vision to Southwest Louisiana. At the same time, we narrowed our property search down to a tract of land on West Sallier Street. As we looked into it, we discovered the rich history associated with the original Walnut Grove which was just down the road, where the port is now. We knew we had found the site for

January 2013

Borealis Rex

our Traditional Neighborhood Development, a place where we could connect the best parts of our region’s history and sense of community in a modern way.” Schram explains that New Urbanism is an architectural approach that encapsulates a village within a neighborhood, and Traditional Neighborhood Developments, or TNDs, are a hallmark of this approach. “As society has evolved to include advanced amenities, sprawling populations and hectic, hurried lifestyles, small-town America seems to have gotten lost along the way. Today’s town center is more urban than quaint; we spend more time in our cars than on foot; and talk to our neighbors through texts, not on the front porch. We want to change that. Everything you need– groceries, parks, restaurants and shops – will be right around the corner in Walnut Grove. You can stop in a shop along the way, say hello to your neighbor, or bring your children to the park. It’s not a reversion to the past, but a unity between tradition and innovation. Walnut Grove will bring forth a revival of the spirit of community which our country was built around.” The 60 acres of Walnut Grove, located along Sallier Street in the same general area as its historic namesake, will feature the traditional elements of a TND: aesthetically paved streets, pedestrian

January 2013

Lake Charles Southern Depot

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Places & Faces

Lover’s Lane

sidewalks and walkways, offices, shops, homes, restaurants, a town square, parks, greens, playgrounds, a beautiful estuary and other fundamentals that comprise a self-contained village within a neighborhood—all without sacrificing the great traditions of south Louisiana that inspired it. Traditional architectural elements of the region are being painstakingly followed, from building plans to the smallest architectural and design details. Schram says the goal is to create a community that looks like it evolved naturally over time, with unique character and style. “We didn’t want to build a cookie-cutter development that could exist in ‘Anywhere, U.S.A.’ We wanted Walnut Grove to be essentially Southwest Louisiana,” says Schram. He noted that streets and parks were named in honor of the people and places that impacted the area in meaningful ways. Just a few examples include: Jabez Drive, a main street in Walnut Grove, was named after Jabez Bunting Watkins who launched a major campaign in 1883 to attract people of the “highest caliber” to Southwest Louisiana; Charleston Park, carrying the original name of the town that became Lake Charles, one of several parks in Walnut Grove; and Contraband Alley, named after Pirate’s Alley in New Orleans , is a beautifully planned retail streetscape. “We wanted to not only capture the flavor of this area, but to celebrate it, and pay tribute to its history,” says Schram. “In our opinion, that takes it a step further from being just another development, and makes it something everyone in our region can be proud of.”


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ESTATE HOMES PARKS The New Walnut PARKING Grove Master Plan


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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

Louisiana businesses are our biggest fans. That’s because for over 20 years we’ve provided competitive rates, great service and excellent workers’ comp coverage. So no matter what business you’re in, give us a call at (985) 612-1230 or visit www.lciwc.com today. More local companies are coming over to LCI, and yours is welcome to join the party. January 2013

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Places & Faces

first person with

Shelley Johnson by Katie Harrington photo by Shonda Manuel

First Person is a monthly Q&A that features compelling people who excel in their chosen endeavors. Ideas for future Q&As? Email edit@thriveswla.com.

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013


has been nearly 25 years since Shelley Johnson was named executive director of the Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau. When she took the helm in 1988 the area really wasn’t considered a destination for tourists. Expanded offerings and a new vision and brand have made the area more than just a place to stop between Houston and New Orleans. Now, thanks to the coordinated marketing and sales efforts of the bureau and its many area partners, Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana is a planned stop for travelers for a multitude of reasons. There is no doubt that tourism is big business and the economic impacts are felt by everyone who call Southwest Louisiana home. Thrive recently spoke with Johnson about the growth the area has experienced, what’s on tap for 2013 and how we, as local residents, can help bring visitors to the area.

Why is tourism so important to Southwest Louisiana’s economy? In the early 80’s we were totally dependent on oil and gas. Today, we have a diversified economy that includes a mix of the petrochemical industry as well as tourism and aviation as other top employers in the parish. There are now 5400 hotel rooms in the area and each time a visitor comes in and stays in one of those rooms, it’s new, clean money coming to the area. Not only do they stay in that hotel room, they go out and spend money on food, gas and other essentials before heading off to their next destination. What are some of the biggest changes, tourism-wise, you have seen over the years? In a broad sense, we are much more of a tourist destination now. Thanks to casino gaming and the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road, we can conservatively say that 200,000 to 300,000 visitors and locals are experiencing the area’s many attractions each weekend. Our offerings have also changed. Then, we basically had the Creole Nature Trail and Sam Houston Jones State Park. Now, in addition to these two, we have seven museums, including a world-class Mardi Gras museum. Tell me about some of the major accomplishments and developments brought on by the bureau’s efforts. We’ve looked at things that make us unique, maybe things that we, as locals, take for granted, and developed them into attractions for visitors. The Boudin Trail, one of the most recent developments, has really taken off. We’ve capitalized on the simple, natural offerings by creating userfriendly guides for visitors. Examples include our shelling brochure and birding guide. If we have groups coming to town we try to create a custom package of things for them to do. Motorcoach groups typically want to travel the Creole Nature Trail and for conventions, the spouses of the delegates are usually interested in touring the historic district. Throughout the year we host travel writers in order to spread the word to the masses about our offerings and the Boudin Trail has been a huge hit with them. Who would have thought that one of these media tours would have resulted in us being featured in USA Today right alongside Hawaii as a top winter getaway spot? In order to be a tourist destination, there must be something to attract visitors. What are some of the major bureau-sponsored programs that support local attractions and arts organizations? We are proud to be a leader in the state when it comes to arts/tourism partnerships. Twelve years ago we started a program to enhance the area’s arts options and we are proud that it is still going strong. The Arts and Humanities Council of Southwest Louisiana administers bureau-funded grants that help maintain and develop the arts and humanities in our area. The music, food and culture that our area is so well known for are very important. Without the ballet, arts, music and food, we would not be nearly as welcoming to our visitors or as enticing to someone looking to move here. These programs enhance the quality of life. This partnership is our way of giving back to the community.

January 2013

What can local residents do to help in the efforts of the bureau? How can we get involved? It’s simple—bring your friends and family to the area. If you are a member of a board or group, host your next meeting here. The bureau will take care of the legwork for you. Rufus Fruge recently retired after being the sales tax collector in the parish for 26 years. Over the course of all those years, he brought nine meetings to the area. That adds up. Whether it is small or large, bring your meeting here. Also, you can attend local festivals and events. With more than 75 annual fairs, festivals and events, there is literally something to do every weekend. Get out there and experience it! What are some of the major events on tap for 2013? This month we will host the Lieutenant Governor’s Tourism Summit. The last time we hosted this event was in 2006, right after Rita and Katrina hit. This is a new opportunity for us to showcase the growth our area has experienced since then. The Southeastern Outdoor Press Association will hold their annual conference here in September. This will bring more than 150 outdoor travel writers to the area and will help us promote the many nature-based tourism opportunities available. The last time both of these groups toured the area, there were blue roofs everywhere so these are great opportunities for us to show how our area has not only recovered, but grown as well. The economic boom predicted for the area will impact tourism in a positive way. In the way of sporting events, the Louisiana High School Athletic Association has entrusted the state softball championship, known locally as Fast Pitch 56, for more than a decade and after last year’s success with the high school rodeo finals, we have secured that event for another five years. We are now at a point where we have a great mix of leisure, business and youth sporting events happening all at the same time and we have the infrastructure in place to support them all. If you could pick one high-point from the past 25 years, what would it be? It’s hard to pick just one, there have been so many. There is one thing though that I feel like I’ve been fortunate enough to leave a thumbprint on. Working to make the Creole Nature Trail a National Scenic Byway and then an All-American Road has garnered millions of dollars in federal grants for the area. We are continuing to enhance the trail and this is one thing that I’m proud to have had a big impact with. I have also been lucky enough over the years to have a very, very good staff. None of them have come to the bureau with a tourism background. I am proud to have developed a talented, passionate staff to market, sell and promote Southwest Louisiana. For more information on what to see and do in Southwest Louisiana, visit visitlakecharles.org and be sure to follow the bureau on Twitter, twitter.com/ LakeCharlesCVB, and Facebook, facebook.com/LakeCharlesCVB.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



Places & Faces

Everyday by Katie Harrington


Last year Sulphur resident Alex Benton was in Oklahoma City with her mom when she saw something that made a tremendous impact on her. “I saw some people who needed shoes,” the 8-year-old says. “And then I saw people giving them some.” She returned from the trip and told her dad that instead of presents for her upcoming eighth birthday, she wanted to collect gently used shoes to give to needy children. “I said okay, and we set out to do some research,” Clark Benton, Alex’s dad, says. “We found national organizations like Soles for Souls, but she wanted to do something to help local people.” They approached their church, First Baptist of Sulphur, and were able to get some support through the church’s outreach ministry, Love Out Loud (LOL). “She made up her mind over the summer that she wanted to do this and the drive was held during the later part of October and beginning of November,” says Benton. “She collected the shoes for somewhere around a month and at the end, she had 200 pairs to give to Care Help of Sulphur.” Benton says they were so happy with the response. “She’s a giver, always has been, and this really solidified that for me.”



Discover the area’s best Wedding Professionals from photographers to wedding planners while experiencing the elegance and charm of Gray Plantation, during our annual Bridal Preview.



54 www.thriveswla.com

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

January 2013

united way volunteer profiles For nearly 70 years, the United Way of Southwest Louisiana has committed itself to building strong, successful families and strengthening the community. With the support of over a thousand volunteers and numerous partners, the agency works to deliver nearly 55 programs, targeting the key human services needs of Southwest Louisiana.

As the annual campaign is drawing to a close and the organization works towards meeting its final goal of $4 million, they are thankful for the many volunteers who give so freely of their time and talents. Many of their volunteers, like these below, have been involved for a number of years. To learn more about becoming a United Way volunteer, visit www.unitedwayswla.org.

vickie wicks gives to united way SWLA For Lake Charles native and McNeese State University graduate Vickie Wicks, involvement with United Way of SWLA came after hearing the late CEO Tom Morris speak at her Rotary Club in 2001. Wicks, a regional leader for Edward Jones Investments, says it was hard to tell Tom no once you heard him speak -- as anyone who knew him knows. She is currently serving on the cabinet as the Alexis de Touquville chair, the society of citizens in the community who give back in a big way by donating $10,000 or more to United Way each year. She has served as the chairman

of the board and was on the board of directors from 2003-2009. She says anyone considering becoming involved in United Way should know that the funds raised stay here to help local programs. She adds nothing is better than being able to make a difference in the lives of those in her community, and encourages everyone to see for themselves by visiting any of the United Way agencies. “Take a tour and see what they do each and every day to help those in our community. It would make you proud and touch your heart!”

dana keel advocates for united way SWLA As the government and public affairs manager for the CITGO Lake Charles Manufacturing Complex, Dana Keel has the opportunity to be involved in many aspects of community service. CITGO has been supporting United Way through employee contributions for more than 37 years and Keel says this is how she made her first contribution to the organization. She has served as a CITGO United Way solicitor, a loaned executive and has been the coordinator of the complex’s campaign for more than 10 years. She is a past member of United Way SWLA Allocations and Review

Process and is currently serving on the agency’s board of directors. “When a community is involved in United Way or an agency, they see the deep-rooted compassion for people and gain a real understanding of the needs of their neighbors,” says Keel. “I have been involved with Boys Village for about 10 years, on the board of directors for nearly eight years, and realized quickly they have a heart of service. There is no greater reward than giving of yourself to help your fellow man.”

jan arceneaux volunteers her time with united way SWLA Welsh resident Jan Arceneaux is a volunteer at heart. She began volunteering for Big Brothers Big Sisters back when she was a McNeese student. When she joined the staff at Westlake Chemical 21 years ago she got involved with the company’s service projects. She is a coordinator for the Partners in Education Program and works on the ChemExpo steering committee. She has always supported United Way through the company’s annual campaign and has served as the campaign chair several times. She has been volunteering with Junior Achievement since shortly after joining the company and teaches the 2nd grade program at JD Clifton and Vincent Settlement

January 2013

elementary schools. After volunteering for several years, she was asked to join their board. She was named the Volunteer of the Year at the first Junior Achievement of SWLA Hall of Fame event. She says she has learned something from every class she has taught in the Junior Achievement program over the years. “I wasn’t sure if I could teach a class when I first started, but with all the lesson plans and materials provided, it wasn’t as intimidating as I thought. If we can help students set educational goals so they can be work ready when they graduate or if we can help them learn a beneficial life skill then it is time well spent.”

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Places & Faces

Movers and Shakers in Southwest News? You tell us! Send press releases to Louisiana... Who’s edit@thriveswla.com with the subject line “Who’s News.”

Gerstner Memorial Marker Unveiled The Gerstner Memorial sign was unveiled at the northwest corner of Hwy 27 and Old Camp Road. The marker honors a military facility that was an important aspect of aviation history. The Southwest Louisiana Historical Society placed an original sign, but local partners came together and funded the creation of a new historic marker. For more information, please contact the Lake Charles/ Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau at (337) 436-9588 or visit www.visitlakecharles.org/ gerstner.

Angie Manning Recognized as a Top Travel Professional Under 40 Angie Manning, communications director for the Lake Charles/ Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau, was recently Angie Manning recognized as a top travel professional under 40 by the Southeast Tourism Society. Young professionals from Virginia to California have been chosen for the first class of “Forty for the Future: Travel’s Leading Talent.” The Southeast Tourism Society (STS), an Atlanta-based professional association in the tourism industry, organized the recognition. For more information, visit www.southeasttourism.org.

Family & Youth Honors Pinnacle Light of Hope Awardees Ted & Trudy Mayeux, the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office and George Swift were honored as recipients of the 2012 Pinnacle Light of Hope award their outstanding work in advocating for the welfare and well-being of children and youth in Southwest Louisiana. Presented by Pinnacle Entertainment Foundation, the Child Advocate Celebration honors all individuals who serve as advocates for children in our community through Family & Youth’s Children’s Advocacy Center, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) and Children & Families Action Network (CFAN). For more information call 337.436.9533, visit www.fyca.org, or like Family & Youth on Facebook.

City of Lake Charles Awarded Medals Recognizing Achievements in Addressing Childhood Obesity through Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties

L to R: Randy Robb, Chennault International Airport Authority; Adley Cormier, Calcasieu Preservation Society; Nancy Moss, Calcasieu Preservation Society; Shanna Landry, Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau; Buzzy Brunot, Tony Stelly, Calcasieu Parish Police Jury; Sammie Faulk, Creole Nature Trail All-American Road.

United Way Ranked As All-Star Charity United Way Worldwide announced its selection by Forbes magazine as the largest U.S charity. In addition, United Way has been named one of “Forbes Picks: All-Star Charities,” a newly created category that reflects the organization’s dedication to quality programs, community impact and organizational efficiency.

New Lake Area Charity Announced A new Lake Area charity aims to inspire. Originally formed in July 2012, and featured by KPLC’s Drew vs. You in November, Ainsley’s Angels of Southwest Louisiana is a certified, non-profit chapter of the myTEAM Triumph. With a mission to serve as an athletic ride-along program created for persons who would normally not be able to experience endurance events, such as 5Ks, 10Ks, half and full marathons, triathlons, to name but a few, Ainsley’s Angels is growing rapidly. For more information, visit www.ainsleysangels.org. 56 www.thriveswla.com

The National League of Cities (NLC) has recognized the City of Lake Charles for recent completion of key health and wellness goals for Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC). LMCTC is a major component of First Lady Michelle Obama’s comprehensive Let’s Move! initiative, which is dedicated to solving the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation. For more information about LMCTC and the City of Lake Charles’ accomplishments, visit www. healthycommunitieshealthyfuture.org.

Pinnacle Entertainment Names Regional Public Relations Specialist Pinnacle Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: PNK) recently announced that Julie Collins has joined the Pinnacle team as its Regional Public Relations Julie Collins Specialist. In her role as Regional PR Specialist, Collins will assist the Corporate Director of Media Relations and Public Affairs, Kerry Andersen, with enhancing Pinnacle corporate image and property identity programs.

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L to R: Keith W. Henson, senior vice president/general manager of L’Auberge Lake Charles; Kerry Andersen, corporate director of media relations & public affairs for Pinnacle Entertainment and Family & Youth board chair; George Swift, president & CEO of Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance; Trudy and Ted Mayeux; Detective William Wilcox, Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office; and Julio Galan, president & CEO of Family & Youth

Dr. Tyson Green Honored for Community Service The Southwest Louisiana Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals recognized Dr. Tyson Green, foot and ankle specialist at Center for Orthopaedics, Tyson Green, MD an affiliate of Imperial Health, for his contributions to the community at a banquet celebrating National Philanthropy Day. He was one of 23 individuals and organizations honored at the event.

January 2013

Kerry Andersen Awarded Louisiana Children’s Trust Fund Award

Local Artists Awarded Competitive State Grant

Kerry Andersen was awarded the Louisiana Children’s Trust Fund’s Judge Richard Ware Award at the organization’s annual statewide grantee meeting. The award was named in memory of the late, Judge Richard N. Ware. For more information call 337.436.9533, visit www.fyca.org, or like Family & Youth on Facebook.

Heather Ryan Kelley

L to R: Kerry Andersen, corporate director of media relations & public affairs for Pinnacle Entertainment and Family & Youth Board chair; Julio Galan, president and CEO of Family & Youth; and Judy Harrison, executive director of the Louisiana Children’s Trust Fund.

Recognizing Women In Business The 3rd Annual Women Business Leaders Awards Luncheon was held at L’Auberge Casino Resort, this year’s host & sponsor. The luncheon honored successful business women based on nominations from fellow business leaders.

2012 Award winners from L to R: Erica McCreedy, executive director of the Arts & Humanities Council of Southwest Louisiana; Debbie Boudreaux, administrator of Surgicare of Lake Charles, and Annette St. Romain of Bijoux Jewelers.

IBERIABANK Names Private Banker Brian Abshire IBERIABANK, the 125-year-old subsidiary of IBERIABANK Corporation, has announced the recent naming of Brian Abshire as Vice President of Private Brian Abshire Banking for Southwest Louisiana. Abshire joins the Company with 18 years of commercial lending and private banking experience. He most recently served as Executive and Professional Banker for First National Bank of Louisiana in Lake Charles.

January 2013

Ganey Arsement

Two Lake Area artists, visual artist Heather Ryan Kelley and Cajun musician Ganey Arsement, were awarded funds from the Artist Career Advancement grant with the Office of Cultural Development in Baton Rouge. The grant, which funds up to $3,000 per application, is designed to assist practicing Louisiana artists in a variety of disciplines by the Grammy-nominated Basin Brothers, and the world renowned Balfa Toujours. He teaches at Barbe High School and holds a Master of Education from McNeese State University. For more information, contact the Arts Council office at (337) 439-2787.

Dr. Craig Morton Nominated as “Top Doctor” by National Medical Website Craig Morton, MD, physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist with Center for Orthopaedics, an affiliate of Imperial Health, Craig Morton, MD has been nominated as a “Top Doctor” by HealthTap.com, the world’s leading interactive health network. Dr. Morton has been a part of the network since it was developed in 2010. The site has grown tremendously in popularity since then, with over 16,000 physicians in the United State now participating. HealthTap provides people with expert answers to medical questions in an open forum that incorporates peer review by allowing other doctors to comment on answers and post additional information. The site has been featured in numerous national media outlets, including NBC, CNN, FOX News, The Wall Street Journal, Business Week and Time Magazine, among others. Dr. Morton has built a reputation for credibility and responsiveness on the site, which has led to his nomination for the “Top Doctor” ranking. Visitors to the site can learn more about how HealthTap works, and vote for Dr. Morton by visiting www.HealthTap.com/vote.

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Area Football Referees work 2A State Championship Football Officials from the Southwest Louisiana Football Officials Association officiated the 2A State Championship Game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. game featured state and national powerhouse teams, John Curtis Christian and Evangel Christian Academy. Local Officials calling the game were: Referee: Brian Myers – Westlake - 24 years experience Umpire: Melvin Hardy – Lake Charles - 17 years experience Head Linesman: Eric Zartler – Lake Charles 13 years experience Line Judge: Rodney Bougeious – Lake Charles – 20 years experience Back Judge: Aubery Matthews – Iowa 30 years experience Side Judge: Sutton (Skip) Francis – Lake Charles 14 years experience Field Judge: William Aucoin – Hackberry 18 years experience Game Clock Operator: John Humphrey – Carlyss 11 years experience 25 Second Clock Operator: Ryan King – Iowa 9 years experience For more information on officiating High School Football contact Keith Powell at (337) 263-7821.

Kotara Joins Lakeside Management Team Bonnie Kotara has joined Lakeside Bank as a Vice President and Loan Operations Supervisor. Originally from Sulphur, Kotara has worked in the local banking industry for 20 years, at First National Bonnie Kotara Bank, Cameron State Bank and Iberiabank. Her past experience includes the positions of teller, new account associate and loan secretary. Her most recent position was Loan Operations Department Supervisor, Assistant Vice President at Iberiabank. Kotara lives in Lacassine and has served on the Lacassine Recreation League board for 12 years.



First, you Make a Roux If Mardi Gras reigns king over Louisiana’s festivals then gumbo is the king of Louisiana’s lauded cuisine. It is a dish that transcends all classes and no two bowls taste the same. It is a prime example of Louisiana’s melting pot of cultures, with ingredients coming from many different backgrounds. For example, okra is West African in origin and filé (dried and ground sassafras leaves) is believed to be a contribution of the Choctaws and possibly other native tribes.

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January 2013

The first documented serving of gumbo occurred at a gubernatorial reception held in New Orleans in 1803. In 1804 gumbo was served along the Acadian coast at a Cajun gathering. Today, the most well-known renditions include seafood and chicken and sausage, but this barely scratches the surface of what can be included in a pot of this Louisiana comfort food. Duck, oysters, eggs and much more can be found in today’s gumbos. Just as the landscape and accents change as you venture through different parts of the state, so does the gumbo. In New Orleans and other parts of southeastern Louisiana, tomatoes and okra are common ingredients. This is a tribute to the Creole heritage of this part of the state. In southwestern Louisiana, you won’t find tomatoes in the gumbo, but you will find a darker roux, an oil and flower concoction, and mixtures of everything from duck, quail and chicken to sausages made from many different types of meat. Cooking a good gumbo is a badge of honor in Louisiana and this is why gumbo cook-offs held in various parts of the state always offer up hot competition. The annual Cajun Extravaganza and Gumbo Cook-off held each year during

Mardi Gras weekend is no different as more than 40 teams vie for a chance to have bragging rights to the best pot of gumbo. Local Mardi Gras krewes, social groups and even professional chefs compete in amateur and professional divisions to make the best pot of chicken and sausage or wild game gumbo. The 2013 event is scheduled for Saturday, February 9, in the Exhibition Hall of the Civic Center. For a $5 admission, the public can taste from every pot while dancing to the sounds of live music. Entries are still being accepted and more details, including the entry form, can be found at www.swlamardigras.com.

Who’s the Best? Sh Ch rimp ick en & Cra &S b aus Gum bo age Gu mb o

We asked our Facebook fans where they head for the best bowl of gumbo in town. Their first answer, of course, was their own home or the home of a family member. Outside of that, here’s the local favorite restaurants they named: – Seafood Palace – Pat’s of Henderson – Southern Spice – Hollier’s – Nina P’s – Chastain’s – Ball’s Chicken

3901 Ryan Street , Lake Charles • (337) 474-6065 227 Highway 171 North, Lake Charles • (337) 855-0010 January 2013

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delicious gumbo recipes chicken & sausage

seafood gumbo

Ingredients • 1 cup oil • 1 cup flour • 2 large onions, chopped • 2 bell peppers, chopped • 4 ribs celery, chopped • 4 - 6 cloves garlic, minced • 4 quarts chicken stock • 2 bay leaves • 2 teaspoons Creole seasoning, or to taste • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste • 1 large chicken (young hen preferred), cut into pieces • 2 pounds andouille or smoked sausage, cut into 1/2” pieces • 1 bunch scallions (green onions), tops only, chopped • 2/3 cup fresh chopped parsley • Filé powder to taste

Ingredients 2 -1/2 cups medium dark roux 3 cups diced onion 3 cups chopped celery 3 cups diced bell peppers 1/2 cup tomato paste 1/2 cup fresh minced garlic 5 lbs seafood of your choice 5 lbs whole crawfish 1 tsp whole thyme leaves 1 tbsp sweet basil 1 tbsp black pepper 4 whole bay leaves 1 tsp ground cayenne pepper 1 tbsp kitchen Bouquet 2 cups crushed tomato fillets 1 ¼ gallon seafood stock 1 tbsp gumbo file

Directions Season the chicken with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning and brown quickly. Brown the sausage, pour off fat and reserve meats. In a large, heavy pot, heat the oil and cook the flour in the oil over medium to high heat (depending on your roux-making skill), stirring constantly, until the roux reaches a dark reddishbrown color, almost the color of coffee or milk chocolate for a Cajun-style roux. If you want to save time, or prefer a more New Orleans-style roux, cook it to a medium, peanut-butter color, over lower heat if you’re nervous about burning it. Add the vegetables and stir quickly. This cooks the vegetables and also stops the roux from cooking further. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes. Add the stock, seasonings, chicken and sausage. Bring to a boil, then cook for about one hour, skimming fat off the top as needed.

Directions Using a 20 quart stock pot heat and whisk the roux till it is light brown. Add the onions, celery, bell pepper, tomato paste and garlic to the roux and simmer over medium low heat until all vegetables are very limp. Add remaining ingredients (except gumbo filé and Seafood) to the gumbo; cook over low heat for 40 minutes. Add the seafood and crawfish and cook for 15 more minutes. Allow gumbo to cool for 30 minutes, cover and place overnight in the refrigerator. You can add your favorite seafood to this gumbo. The main thing is to add it in the last 15 minutes so that it stays firm and keeps its own flavor. Seafood gumbo gets it seafood flavor from the stock mostly and you don’t want to have seafood gumbo mush. Serves 12 people

Add the chopped scallion tops and parsley, and heat for 5 minutes. Serve over rice in large shallow bowls. Accompany with a good beer and lots of hot, crispy French bread. YIELD: About 12 entrée sized servings. Source: www.gumbocity.com

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January 2013

Gumbo Secrets

It is often said that no two pots of gumbo taste the same. This may be true, but there are some tricks that gumbo cooks pick up over the years.

Local resident Calvin Soileau Jr. says tomato sauce is a key ingredient in his seafood gumbo. “It thickens it up without having to use too much roux.” He also adds that he personally likes to stay away from okra in his gumbo. Celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse says it’s important that a roux simmer for two beers, meaning you should let your roux simmer so long that you are able to drink two beers. Consider these additional tips from www.gumbocooking. com.

It starts with the roux. Aim to make your roux the color of chocolate milk unless you are hoping for a New Orleans-style Creole gumbo. A dark roux is a necessity if you are going to achieve that rich, authentic taste for which Louisiana gumbo is known.

Take stock of your base. Instead of just plain water, mix your roux into a chicken stock if you are making a chicken and sausage gumbo or a seafood stock if you are making seafood gumbo.

Keep it fresh. When it comes to your vegetables, meats and/or seafood, fresh is best. This is especially important if you are cooking a seafood gumbo.

We Have


It takes time, cher. The best gumbos are cooked over a low heat for two to three hours. Also, the longer it sits, the better it is going to taste as the flavors will have ample time to blend together.

to lend!

For additional tips and gumbo recipes, visit www.gumbocooking.com.

Loans for all reasons & all seasons!

We offer the best in Louisiana seafood and steak. Come try our award winning gumbo and seafood platters! • Pat’s Signature Steak • Signature “Cajun” Fettuccine • Stuffed Red Snapper

3 Locations • Multiple ATMs Lake Charles, Sulphur & Westlake


1500 Siebarth Drive, Lake Charles • (337) 439-6618 January 2013

Membership is easier than you think!

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337-477-9190 www.swlacu.com www.thriveswla.com


Mind & Body Workout: Noon t: Workou Noon

n a c u o Y o it! d

Spin class 5:30


Tennis lesson 3:00

Working in a Workout Getting in shape and losing weight are the top two New Year’s resolutions year after year, but research shows that more than half of the people who begin exercising to achieve these goals drop their program before spring arrives. The most common reason? A lack of time. “We all know how important exercise is for overall health, but we are all very busy. Your intentions may be very sincere, but the demands on your time have probably not changed,” says Ellen Papania, CHRISTUS Louisiana Athletic Club-Lake Charles, a St. Patrick Hospital venture. “In today’s increasingly hectic lifestyles, many people feel like there is never enough time to do those things they have to do, much less add in one more task. They key is to think of exercise as one of those important things you have to do – put it right up there with work meetings, kids homework and volunteering. After all, what is more important than your health? If you do this, you’ll be much less likely to skip it when time is short.”

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It may be challenging, but Papania says it is not impossible to work fitness into your already busy schedule. She offers the following suggestions: • Schedule your workouts. Mark them on the calendar and consider them as important as other events on your schedule. This will help you start viewing this time as something that is optional. • On the days that you really lack motivation or really do not have time for your complete exercise routine, commit to do just 20 minutes of exercise. Chances are once you start, you’ll actually exercise longer, but even if you don’t, 20 minutes is still much better than zero, and it will help keep you in the habit of exercising regularly. January 2013

• Recognize that you’re probably going to miss some workouts from time-to-time. That’s no reason to “throw in the towel.” Have a back-up plan to use when this happens. Substitute another activity, even if it’s at home or work. For example, use commercial breaks during television programs. Make it a goal to do 10 jumping jacks during the commercials of every television program you watch. Then, bump it up to 15 or 20 the next day. At work, take the stairs, or commit to taking a short walk inside or outside the building at lunch. Any physical activity is better than none. • Do double duty when running errands. Make your goal to find the farthest parking space you can, instead of circling around for a close spot. When grocery shopping, park far away and use a shopping cart. Once you’ve unpacked the groceries in your car, take the cart back to the store. Every extra step burns extra calories. • Mix it up. If you’re in a fitness rut, you won’t be enthusiastic about getting to your workout, and it will be that much easier to make excuses and skip. The beginning of the year is a good time to change your routine. Take a group fitness class, schedule a personal training session or add strength training to your regular cardiovascular workout. And don’t forget that a scheduled “workout buddy” will support you in keeping your workout commitments.

Get UP and Feel Better The doctors with Ultimate Performance know that the body and mind function together. The health of your central nervous system affects the way you feel, think and function.

We offer a holistic approach to health. Our patients experience renewed mobility and the energy to accomplish more, whether it’s everyday life or in athletic competitions.

Papania stresses that it’s important to remember that balance, variety and moderation apply to the exercise as well as to most other things in life, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you slip up. “It takes at least three months of consistent, regular workout for it to become a habit. Stay focused and committed, and you’ll achieve your goal of being a healthier you in 2013.” For more information on fitness and wellness programs, contact Ellen Papania at CHRISTUS Louisiana Athletic Club-Lake Charles at 474-6601.

Learn more about our doctors, our approach and read patient stories at uperformance.com.

Jeremy Ward, DC

New Location! 646 W. McNeese Street Lake Charles 421-0010 January 2013

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Kyle Daigle, DC




Mind & Body

When Allergies Become

Extreme by Christine Fisher

It’s usually innocent things like pecans, shrimp or egg whites; or it could be a medication or a bee sting. These everyday things have the potential to send someone into a life-threatening emergency very quickly if they are severely allergic to them. The scary thing is, the allergen is usually unknown until an allergic reaction takes place. It could be a mild wake-up call or it could be a fullblown anaphylaxis reaction, which goes beyond a slight allergy. “Anaphylaxis is a serious, potentially lifethreatening allergic response that occurs throughout the whole body,” said Dang Nguyen, MD, family medicine physician with Maplewood Family Medicine in Sulphur, and medical staff member of West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital. “Mild allergies to pollen or grass might be noticed with itchy, watery eyes, or congestion, but anaphylaxis involves a severe immune system response that is evident quickly after exposure and requires immediate medical attention.” In Erica Fisher’s case, her reaction quickly became severe. “It took me a few minutes to realize I was having a reaction, but then I knew something was terribly wrong,” she said. A freshman at McNeese, Fisher had known she was allergic to peanuts after a mild reaction when she was young. “It was never a big problem. I just knew to avoid peanuts,” she said. During an office lunch meeting, she ate a chicken salad sandwich that unknowingly contained tiny bits of pecans. Within ten minutes, she began to feel flushed, her heartbeat accelerated and her eyes were watering. On her way to the campus infirmary, her throat began to tighten and it was difficult to 64 www.thriveswla.com

breathe. The nurses there said she needed to go to a hospital right away, she was having a severe allergic reaction. At the ER, nurses gave her medication to stop the allergic reaction, as well as fluids and oxygen; an EKG was done and, after monitoring her for a few hours, Fisher was prescribed an epinephrine injection kit, otherwise known as an EpiPen. “I hope I never feel that way again. It was really scary. At that time, I didn’t know what had caused it. It wasn’t until the next day that we found out the chicken salad had pecans in it,” Fisher explained. “I’ve never had a reaction that extreme.” Dr. Nguyen said that people with a history of mild allergic reactions may be at greater risk for developing a severe reaction in the future. “They may go for years after having a mild reaction and not have a problem and then be exposed to a similar allergen and experience anaphylaxis. Repeated exposures can lead to more serious reactions.” The only fast, effective treatment is epinephrine by injection. Epinephrine is adrenaline and it rapidly reverses anaphylactic symptoms. Fisher carries an EpiPen with her at all times, and is thankful to have a remedy nearby but hopes she never has to use it. “I know I need to be extra careful, especially Thrive Magazine for Better Living

with salad mixtures and casseroles where you can’t always see exactly what’s in them. I’m glad I received the medical care I needed before it was even more serious.” Dr. Nguyen said immediate medical attention is needed. Without it, anaphylaxis can get worse very quickly and lead to anaphylactic shock, which further affects the airway and heartbeat. “It is a frightening experience. The symptoms come on suddenly and are exponentially more severe than what they’ve experienced in the past,” he explained. People with this potential should do everything they can to prevent exposure, but at some point, they’ll likely come in contact with an allergen. Knowing the symptoms of anaphylaxis, having an automatic epinephrine injection system and following up with emergency care is the best remedy.

January 2013

NewYear, New Health

Preventative healthcare can add years to your life The New Year has rung and now it is back to work. Around this time of year most people have probably given some thought to what resolutions they will pursue this year and odds are they have something to do with health. What better time than New Years to take charge of your own health. Working out more, eating less or better are all good starts, but it is also important to know where you stand health wise. “Regular health exams and tests can help find problems before they start,” says Dr. Cristian Romero, an internal medicine doctor with the Memorial Medical Group. “They also can help find problems early, when your chances for treatment and cure are better. By getting the right health services, screenings, and treatments, you are taking steps that help your chances for living a longer, healthier life.” Remember the old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Getting age appropriate screenings can make the second

century of your life just as good as the first. Generally speaking, all men and women should have their weight, blood pressure and cholesterol checked regularly. “For women, it may be time to schedule that a Pap test for cervical cancer, a mammogram for breast cancer, and a colonoscopy for colorectal cancer,” Dr. Romero says. “Men, you might want to stop putting off that colonoscopy to check for colorectal cancer and/or a PSA test for prostate cancer. Both should be done at regular intervals.” Children need preventive services too, such as vaccines. Don’t forget the importance of having a primary care doctor. Studies in numerous medical journals have shown that states with more primary care physicians per capita have better health outcomes, including fewer deaths from cancer, heart disease, or stroke. This creates what is known in the medical community as “continuity of care.” Continuity

of care means that you establish a relationship with a health care provider and you enhance that relationship year after year. This provider gets to know you and your health goals, and helps you manage your overall progress. “Your age, health and family history, lifestyle choices; what you eat, how active you are, whether you smoke and other important factors impact what and how often you need healthcare,” Dr. Romero says. “Schedule an appointment with your doctor to discuss what screenings and exams you need and when you need them. This will help you have a healthy happy new year!” The Memorial Medical Group offers a range of primary care physicians and specialists. Call 337.494.5264 or click www.lcmh.com/mmg.

Overcome Overuse Injuries Work, sports and even hobbies can all contribute to aches and pains in ways you may not be aware of. Repetitive stress, or overuse injuries, can result from any repeated action such as using a computer at work, operating heavy equipment, lifting, running, jumping, woodwork, sewing or playing a musical instrument, just to name a few examples. These types of injuries are subtle and usually occur over time, making them challenging to diagnose and treat. Common examples include carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis or golfer’s elbow, swimmer’s shoulder, pitching elbow, runner’s knee, jumper’s knee, Achilles tendinitis, and shin splints. If you feel you may have an overuse injury, don’t miss this seminar with orthopaedic specialist Dr. Steven Hale. He will discuss the most common overuse injuries, along with prevention strategies and treatment options.

Overcome Overuse Injuries Tuesday, January 29, 5:30pm

Center for Orthopaedics • 1747 Imperial Blvd., Lake Charles Seating is limited and pre-registration is requested. Refreshments will be served.

Call 721-2903 or register online at www.centerforortho.com January 2013

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Steven Hale, MD Orthopaedic Specialist www.thriveswla.com


Mind & Body

Thyroid Cancer Remains One of the Most Beatable, but

Early Detection is Key When Dancing with the Stars host Brooke Burke-Charvet announced that she was battling thyroid cancer a few months ago, she, like so many others who have the diagnosis, said she had no clue she had cancer. A few years ago, actress Sofia Vergara revealed she’d been diagnosed also, had undergone surgery to remove her thyroid gland, and will take thyroid hormone medication for life. These ladies, along with the 48,000 other Americans who were diagnosed in 2001, have learned that the cancer is often undetected for a while. At this time, there is no valid screening to determine if thyroid cancer is present. “There aren’t any noticeable symptoms, especially at first,” explained Stephanie Richard, M.D. a pathologist with CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital. “A lump in the neck is the most common symptom and it is often felt during a routine physical exam.” Women are more likely than men to receive a thyroid cancer diagnosis. Out of the 48,000 diagnosed in 2011, 36,550 were women. The thyroid produces and releases hormones to help regulate the function of almost all other tissues in the body, including the rate at which food is broken down and converted into energy. This butterfly-shaped gland is located at the base of the throat and weighs less than one ounce. An imaging test such as a CT scan or ultrasound may be used to diagnose the condition and determine the stage of cancer; a fine-needle biopsy of the thyroid gland may also be done. After diagnosis, most people choose to remove the thyroid gland, then take a supplemental thyroid hormone medication for life to replace the hormones that the body no longer makes. “The surgery has a high success rate and the patient is in the hospital for a day or two,” explained Dr. Richard. “Most patients return to work in a week or two. There is usually some neck stiffness and a sore throat at first that gradually subsides in a few weeks.” The number of people being diagnosed with thyroid cancer is increasing, but most researchers and physicians attribute it to better diagnostic 66 www.thriveswla.com

capabilities. “We’re able to see it better thanks to improved imaging technology. This increases the number of people diagnosed but it gives them the information they need to successfully fight it,” Dr. Richard said. Ultrasound and fine-needle biopsies have helped diagnose many cases that would have not been found before. In the Journal of the American Medical Association, a study published in 2006 attributed the 140 percent increase in thyroid cancer from 1973 to 2002 to “increased diagnostic scrutiny”. There are several types of thyroid cancer: papillary, follicular, medullary and anaplatic. Papillary is the most common type. About 86 of every 100 people with thyroid cancer have the type, according to the National Cancer Institute. Papillary and follicular are slower growing giving most patients and their doctor’s time to formulate a treatment plan. In a video talking about her journey with thyroid cancer, Burke-Charvet said, “my doctor said this is a happily-ever-after kind of thing because if caught early, the survival rate is nearly 100 percent.” Varga told Health.com that the experience changed her life. “When you go through something like this, it’s hard but you learn a lot from it. Your priorities change. You don’t sweat the small stuff. And it had a good ending.” This is another reason why regular physical exams are important to your overall good health. “Many cases of thyroid cancer are detected during routine doctor visits.” Dr. Richard said.

Local Music Fraternity Is Collecting iPods for Nursing Home Residents The McNeese chapter of the men’s music fraternity, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, is collecting iPods to donate to nursing homes. The fraternity is partnering with a national organization called Music and Memory. According to Andrew Fisher, chapter president and a senior at McNeese majoring in music education, the iPods can be in any condition. If broken, they will be repaired, then given to the nursing home residents as a way to help them recall fond memories. “The connection of music and memories is powerful. Music engages the brain in ways that normally don’t get used which allows access to memories that may otherwise be lost,” Fisher said. “Many older adults lose touch with the music they remember from years back. Listening to music from the 30s or 40s can help them relive good memories, communicate more and reconnect.” Studies show that music can engage the brain and help older adults recall events from years ago. The donated iPods will be loaded with favorite music from an era and given to residents. The fraternity is collecting iPods, chargers and cables. For hygienic purposes, only new headphones can be collected. Anything that is not donated to Music and Memory will be donated to a local Goodwill. Donations may be dropped off at McNeese’s Department of Performing Arts Office, located in the Shearman Fine Arts building, room 204 or at Thrive Magazine, 836 University Drive in Lake Charles. For more information, call Fisher at (337) 496-9278 or visit www.musicandmemory.org.

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January 2013

Seal Out Tooth Decay

by Christine Fisher

Think of them as a fairy godmother for teeth: dental sealants help provide that extra layer of protection for children. Instilling good dental hygiene is an ongoing practice. Some parents try to infuse the toothbrushing experience with fun by introducing character toothbrushes, others are more strict with a simple order of “brush your teeth before bed”. Even if you can get your kids in the habit of regular tooth brushing, let’s face it; it’s hard to reach those back teeth through brushing and flossing, especially with small hands that are still learning how to do things. “The grooves and pits in the back teeth are difficult to clean,” said Eric Sanders, DDS with Sanders Pediatric Dentistry. “Germs and plaque can hang out there, settling in and creating the perfect breeding ground for cavities. Sealants protect the chewing surfaces from tooth decay by keeping germs and food particles out of these grooves.” Dental sealants are a clear plastic gel that is brushed on to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. There is no drilling or scraping needed; the process is painless and quick. Sealants are virtually invisible and undetectable. If the back teeth are inspected closely, you may see the sealant, but it is not visible during regular activity when

the child is talking or smiling. It’s usually recommended for children to have dental sealants applied near the age of six or seven or whenever the permanent molars are present. “By applying the sealant soon after the molars come in, we’re able to protect them from the beginning, before they have a chance to decay,” Dr. Sanders explained. They usually last five or ten years, long enough for the child to grow into the responsibility of caring for their teeth, and to get them through the years when they may eat more sugary foods. Sealants can be reapplied if they are no longer present, so even adults can benefit from the added protection, if they and their dentist feel it would be beneficial. “Being proactive is always better than reactive. Sealing a tooth now is better than filling a cavity later. Sealants save time, money, and the potential for discomfort that is sometimes associated with dental fillings,” Dr. Sanders said. “In addition, each time a tooth is filled, more drilling is done and the tooth becomes a little weaker. We want to keep the teeth intact, healthy and strong.” For more information about children’s dental sealants, call Dr. Sanders at (337) 433-5437.

More of the Doctors you Know and Trust Have Joined Imperial Health We are pleased to announce that Cardiovascular Specialists is now affiliated with Imperial Health, the region’s largest physician-owned multispecialty medical group, made up of over 45 area physicians. The cardiologists of Cardiovascular Specialists,

Dr. Michael Turner, Dr. Miguel DePuy and Dr. Thomas Mulhearn, join the other cardiologists of Imperial Health, Dr. Richard Gilmore and Dr. Carl Fastabend, to expand the scope of our cardiovascular care.

The cardiologists of Cardiovascular Specialists have provided experienced, comprehensive cardiac care for decades. They offer a complete range of diagnostic and treatment services for cardiovascular disease, with a focus on early detection and intervention.

www.csswla.com (337) 436-3813 Lake Charles – 600 Dr. Michael DeBakey Drive Sulphur – 250 S. Beglis Parkway, Suite 2 Jennings – 1636 Elton Highway, Suite 202

Miguel DePuy, M.D. January 2013


Michael Turner, M.D.


Thomas Mulhearn, M.D.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



Mind & Body

Break the Cycle of Repetitive Stress Injuries by Kristy Armand

We’re all taught that practice makes perfect, and that repetition leads to success. While that may be true, it’s also true that repetition can lead to overuse injuries when it comes to certain types of activities. Orthopaedic specialist Dr. Steven Hale explains that overuse injuries, also called repetitive stress injuries, are more subtle than an acute, traumatic injury and usually occur over time. He says the human body has a tremendous capacity to adapt to the physical stress we place on it. “With exercise and activity, bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments typically get stronger and more functional. This happens because of an internal process called remodeling, which involves both the breakdown and build-up of tissue. However, there is a fine balance between the two, and if breakdown occurs more rapidly than buildup, injury occurs. These injuries are the result of repetitive microtrauma to the tendons, bones and joints.” Those most at risk for overuse injuries engage in activities that include: • Repetition • High force • Awkward joint positions • Direct pressure • Vibration • Prolonged, constrained posture

Dr. Hale says if your sport, occupation or hobby involves two or more of these risk factors, you’re at greater risk of developing an overuse injury. “Basically, every tissue has its breaking point, and if enough of these factors are combined, then pain and injury may result.” Overuse injuries are most often seen in athletes, and have led to several commonly used terms: tennis elbow, shin splints, swimmer’s shoulder, little league elbow, tennis elbow, Achilles tendonitis and jumper’s knee.

Better Vision has Moved up the Road The Eye Clinic in Jennings is moving – but you won’t have to look very far to find us. We’re relocating in January from 1219 Elton Road to our new office just down the road at 1322 Elton Road, Suite J, in the Jennings Medical Center. We offer comprehensive eye care for the entire family, and our new, expanded office features more exam rooms, a larger waiting area and Optics Unlimited eyewear store, additional parking and a full-service contact lens department.

New Jennings Office

(337) 824-0040 • www.theeyeclinic.net • 1322 Elton Rd., Suite J. • Jennings Medical Center 68 www.thriveswla.com

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All the services in sight January 2013

Dr. Hale says in athletes, training errors are the most common cause of overuse injuries. “These errors involve a too rapid acceleration of the intensity, duration or frequency of activity. This can occur when you first begin an activity and try to do too much too soon, not allowing your body adequate time to recover. It can also develop when people return to a sport or activity after injury and try to make up for lost time.”

Work-related overuse injuries are also common. These, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, are usually associated with repetitive hand movements, but Dr. Hale says any part of the body can be affected. “Any manual task that requires fast and repetitive movements or working in fixed or awkward postures for long periods of time can cause an overuse injury on the job.” Occupations at highest risk are those that involve office work, manual labor or process work. Dr. Hale says even activities that seem harmless can lead to overuse injuries if done improperly or too frequently – and this includes hobbies. “We most frequently see these types of injuries in the hand or wrist of people who regularly paint, play a musical instrument, sew, do woodwork, work in their garden or play video games.” Overuse injuries do not always require medical attention. Dr. Hale says most symptoms can be managed with self-care measures such as rest, ice or heat packs, and over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications. You should see your doctor if you experience pain associated with the activity for two consecutive days or January 2013

longer, or if the problem is occurring with increasing frequency. The diagnosis of overuse injuries can usually be made after a thorough history and physical examination. In some instances, x-rays or additional tests may be needed. Treatment depends on the specific diagnosis. “In general, cutting back the intensity, duration or frequency of the offending activity brings relief. In more advanced cases, additional treatment recommendations may be needed, ” says Dr. Hale. Prevention is always preferable to treatment, and Dr. Hale recommends these common-sense rules to prevent overuse injuries if you are involved in highrisk activities: • Take frequent breaks. • Stretch the muscles you use before and after the specific activity or job you are performing. • Listen to your body. Pain is your body’s way of telling you that something isn’t right. If something hurts, stop. • Use good posture and proper technique.

Relief. You could be dressing for a walk instead of dressing your wound. A wound that hasn’t healed after 30 days is one you shouldn’t ignore. It can keep you from enjoying life the way you used to. So don’t wait any longer to get the help you need. The specially trained staff at Lake Area Wound Care provides convenient and advanced techniques to help heal chronic wounds of any type. To learn more or schedule an appointment, call 337-562-3709 today.

4150 Nelson Road, Bldg. G, Suite 2 Lake Charles • 337-562-3709 LakeAreaPhysicians.com/WoundCare

Learn more about overuse injuries from Dr. Hale at a free community seminar at Center for Orthopaedics on Tuesday, January 29, at 5:30 pm. Call 721-2903 for more information or register online at www.centerforortho.com.

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12/17/12 4:27 PM

Mind & Body

A New Lease on Life by Katie Harrington

Local business owner Estella Mudd has tried everything since 2008 to get her health back.Toward the end of last year she was ready to give up. She found herself so weak that even getting out of bed in the morning was painful and taxing.

“I have two minor children and a disabled mother that live with me,” says Mudd, 47. “I wasn’t sure how I was going to take care of them moving forward and I just knew I didn’t want to be a burden to them since I just seemed to be growing weaker.” Overweight and suffering from a host of symptoms, Mudd wasn’t sure where else to turn, so she decided to take an alternative approach. “A friend told me about a new medical practiced located near her office and the great things that were happening there,” Mudd says. “The first time I met with Dr. Daigle, I gave him the list of medicines I was taking and he was able to tell me the exact symptoms I was suffering from.” Kyle Daigle, DC with Ultimate Performance Sports and Rehab educated Estella on exactly how the human body works and offered her a different approach to help get her feeling healthy again. “We take a three-step approach to help our patients feel better again,” says Dr. Daigle. “Our program is designed to steer people towards eating the right foods that are beneficial for their body.”

“I didn’t notice it right away, but after I would do certain things, like get out of bed in the morning, I began to notice that I wasn’t hurting as much,” says Mudd. “I could get in and out of my truck easier and I am now off of three major medications that I had been taking.” Dr. Daigle agrees that Estella has made great progress in a short amount of time. “She has seen profound changes, her muscle strength and endurance is improving, we have her blood sugar stable and her memory is coming back as well. We were able to give her hope again.” Mudd says for her, this is the answer she has been looking for since 2008. “I really believe this is an answer to my prayers. It has turned my life around in a way that I cannot even begin to tell you.” According to Dr. Daigle, the reason why Estella and many others have seen success with the program is simple. “My goal is to teach people how important diet is and preventing chronic diseases. The one thing we can control in life is our health. Problems like being overweight, high blood pressure or fatigue can be greatly improved with a natural approach. We help our clients understand what their bodies need, put it into practice and they begin to feel better.”

Dr. Daigle describes their program like this:

For more information on Ultimate Performance, call or visit www.uperformance.com. To learn more about the Ultimate 3 Challenge, you’re invited to a free seminar on Thursday, January 17 at 6:30 p.m. at Ultimate Performance, 646 W. McNeese Street in Lake Charles. Dr. Daigle and Dr. Jeremy Ward will explain the program and its benefits. Seating is limited. To reserve a place, call (337) 421-0010.

1. Stop inflammation. This is our body’s natural response to stress, whether from chemicals, foods, muscle imbalances. 2. Improve diet and liver detoxification systems. Our diet is the primary source of fuel for the body and the liver’s main purpose is to flush out daily toxins that can suppress the immune system and brain function. 3. Improve the health of the nervous system. The nervous system is the master system of the body, controlling everything from the immune system to our organ function. “A liver detoxification program tries to flush all the toxins that are circulating in the body, as well as those stored in fat cells,” adds Dr. Daigle. “All of our toxins are stored in fat cells, so this is why people who use a detoxification program are able to lose weight.” In the first three weeks that Estella was on the program, she lost 20 pounds, but more importantly, she has started to feel better.

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January 2013

ThriftyWay Pharmacy #2 Alice Babst-Prestia, MD FACOG Obstetrics & Gynecology

Friendly service from your home town pharmacy.

• Currently Accepting New Patients • In-network with most insurance providers

• Citywide Delivery Service • Drive-Thru Pick-Up Window • E-Mail and Call in RX Service

601 S. Pine Street • DeRidder, LA 70634 • (337) 463-7442 www.thriftyway.com • tw2@thriftyway.com

Sleep Well. Live Better.

4150 Nelson Road, Building E, Suite 2 Lake Charles, LA 70605 Phone: (337) 475-8949 • Fax: (337) 475-8946

Sleep is so much more than the thing you do after work and play. The Sleep Disorder Center of Louisiana has been helping Southwest Louisiana residents get their best rest for over a decade. Trust our board-certified sleep specialists and qualified staff to help you achieve peaceful nights and productive days.

SLEEP SPECIALISTS Jana P. Kaimal, MD • Michelle Zimmerman, NP

(337) 310-REST (7378) January 2013


4820 Lake Street, Lake Charles Thrive Magazine for Better Living


sleepdisordercenterofla.com www.thriveswla.com


Mind & Body

Catch Some

s Z Z Z to Drop Some

The new year is here and your resolve to finally get serious and drop that extra weight is strong.


by Katie Harrington

As you embark on your journey to a slimmer waistline in 2013, recent studies show that getting enough quality sleep should be a major part of your plan.

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Results of a Columbia University study released late last year show that people who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to eat fatty foods—and take in an extra 300 calories a day. “Another study from the Mayo Clinic showed that losing as little as 90 minutes of sleep can result in the consumption of an extra 550 calories,” says Dr. Jana Kaimal, a board-certified sleep specialist and medical director of the Sleep Disorder Center of Louisiana. “When you don’t get enough sleep your brain views unhealthy foods as more pleasurable.” According to Dr. Kaimal, the one-word answer to the link between sleep and your weight is hormones. “The hormones ghrelin and leptin work in a checks-and-balances manner within your body. Ghrelin, produced in the gastrointestinal tract, stimulates appetite, and leptin, produced in fat cells, sends a signal to the brain when you are full.” When you don’t get enough sleep, leptin levels decrease and you don’t feel as satisfied after you eat. A lack of sleep also causes ghrelin levels to increase, stimulating your appetite.

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January 2013

It’s not just as simple as getting the recommended amount of sleep each night, according to Dr. Kaimal. “Some people get seven to nine hours of sleep each night, but it is not the deep, uninterrupted sleep that is needed for the body to repair itself. They wake up feeling like they only had four hours of sleep and spend the rest of the day in a tired haze.” Researchers still have a lot of questions on this subject and new studies are in the works to learn even more about the link between sleep and weight, but sleep specialists agree that there is no downside to getting a good night’s sleep. Dr. Kaimal offers these tips for sleeping well: Power down. This means leave your tablet, cell phone, television and computer in another room. The light emitted by these devices can stimulate your brain, making it harder to drift off to sleep.

Plan for the worst. Stock your kitchen with health foods so that no matter how little sleep you get, you only have good options to select from. Likewise, keep smart snacks like a protein bar or whole-grain crackers with packets of natural peanut butter in your desk so when a workday craving strikes, you will be ready. Take Care of Business. Address any other underlying sleep issues such as insomnia, restless legs syndrome or obstructive sleep apnea by discussing your symptoms with your family practitioner or sleep specialist. There are a number of treatment options available for these sleep disorders including behavioral therapy, pharmacotherapy, and CPAP therapy if indicated. For more information on sleep disorders or sleep-related issues, call the Sleep Disorder Center of Louisiana at (337) 310-7378 or visit www.sleepdisordercenterofla.com.

Get on your side. Sleeping on your side is particularly helpful if snoring or sleep apnea tend to disrupt your rest because it can keep your airway open for better breathing.

St. Margaret Catholic School 2510 Enterprise Blvd. • Lake Charles, LA 70601 337-436-7959 • www.stmcs.com

SACS accredited since 1990

Open House Tuesday, January 29th

8-11am School tours • 6pm in the Cafeteria

• Faith-filled Pre-Kindergarten through 8th Grade environment • Excellent teacher/student ratio with small class sizes • Extended Day Care and Summer Program • Standardized test scores consistently above national average • Qualified and Certified faculty and staff

Achieving Academic Success! January 2013

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Mind & Body

Vein Disorders Cross Gender Lines

by Katie Harrington

Varicose and spider veins aren’t just your grandma’s problem.The twisted, rope-like veins that commonly plague women are just as common in men. In fact, it is estimated that as many as 60 percent of Americans suffer from some form of vein disorder.

In a normal circulatory system, the heart circulates oxygen-rich blood from the lungs to all parts of the body through a network of blood vessels known as arteries. The heart does nearly all of the work required to pump blood in this process. “After oxygen is delivered to the cells, the blood returns to your heart via another network of blood vessels known as veins,” says Dr. Carl Fastabend, cardiolvascular specialist and medical director of the Vein Center of Southwest Louisiana. “There is no active ‘pumping’ mechanism to bring blood back to the heart so blood coming from the legs, for example, has to work against the pull of gravity.” According to Dr. Fastabend, each vein has a special set of one-way valves that allow this process to occur and by moving or walking, as the muscles contract, blood in the veins is squeezed through these valves, bringing blood progressively closer to the heart. “As your blood passes through each valve, it automatically closes shut, equalizing the blood pressure along the veins and preventing your blood from flowing backwards and pooling in your feet,” adds Dr. Fastabend. “Most vein conditions can be linked to failures in these valves.” Varicose veins, spider veins and venous insufficiency are three common vein disorders seen in men.

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Varicose Veins

Spider Veins

“When a vein valve fails, more blood will collect or pool in the portion of the vein below it and press against the vein wall, causing them to stretch out,” Dr. Fastabend explains. “A chain reaction of more valves failing then takes place and as multiple veins are stretched out of shape, they appear enlarged and discolored.” Symptoms of varicose veins include swollen, enlarged and twisted leg veins, aching and burning sensation and night cramps, charley horses, swollen ankles and pain after long periods of sitting or standing. Dr. Fastabend says more than 40 percent of men are affected by varicose veins by the time they reach their 70s.

Spider veins are small and thin, and unlike varicose veins, do not rise above the surface of the skin. “When blood is not being properly pumped back to the heart from the legs, spider veins begin to occur,” Dr. Fastabend says.

Venous Insufficiency Venous insufficiency is another common vein disorder in men, but Dr. Fastabend says many don’t know what to call it. “Many males suffering from venous insufficiency will blame the feeling of heaviness or itching in their legs, cramping at night and the irresistible urge to move or shake their legs periodically on poor circulation.” In this condition, blood pools into the veins of the legs, causing dull aching or pain. It is particularly common after long periods of sitting or standing. In severe forms, venous insufficiency can lead to blood leaking into the surrounding tissues, causing discoloration, sores and ulcers.

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Treating Vein Disorders The first step to treating vein disorders is to get plenty of exercise and avoid long periods of standing, sitting or general inactivity. “Treatment of vein disorders can range from simple home therapy techniques such as wearing compression stockings, elevating the feet and legs, adequate exercise and avoiding prolonged periods of sitting or standing. “On an outpatient basis, we perform radiofrequency ablation for the insufficient superficial veins, and sclerotherapy for spider veins, clusters, and reticular veins. The recovery time is minimal and our patients quickly return to normal activity,” says Dr. Fastabend. For more information, or to schedule a consultation, call The Vein Center of SWLA at (337) 312-8346 or visit www.veincenterswla.com.

January 2013


Solutions Solutions Counseling and EAP for Life 2013 – The Year of Letting Go from

by Keri Forbess-McCorquodale, MS, LPC, LMFT, CEAP

Happy New Year, everyone! I love “new” anything. As a child, I was always so excited to start school every year. All that clean paper, all those brand new supplies, everything organized and neat. So much possibility! I really am a “start over” kind of person. I believe in wiping the slate clean whenever possible. Out with the old and in with the new! In the last few months, I bought my business and bought everything for the business brand spanking new. You can imagine my giddiness! It is the same with each new year to me. A chance to start over. If 2012 wasn’t your best year, not to worry. You can make 2013 your best year! I propose that this year, you focus on letting go of some things. Trust me, there is a lot to let go of. Here are some examples: Resentment – it’s time. It’s time to stop letting bitterness and resentment control your life. I know your life didn’t turn out the way you thought it would. I know that person disappointed and hurt you. I know you think it is unfair that others have and you do not. I know all of that. And it still doesn’t change the situation. But what you don’t realize is that it’s no longer what happened to you that is holding you hostage. Now, it is the choice you have made to be so angry and resentful about it that is keeping you stuck. I hear myself regularly saying to my clients, “Life is short. Are you sure you want to spend whatever is left of your life like this?” While what happened to you is important, it is not nearly as important as how you choose to handle it. Stop choosing to be a victim. Let it go.

alright with you. You need to be OK being alone, even enjoy it at times. In order to want to spend time with yourself, you need to like yourself. 2013 needs to be your year to get comfortable in your own skin, really like who you are, and feel like you deserve to be treated right by others. Remember, if you frantically have to be with someone, you’ll end up being with anyone. And being with anyone over being alone guarantees unhealthiness is to follow.

The preacher, TD Jakes, has a wonderful sermon that has developed into a book on this very topic. You can check him and his “Let It Go” sermon out on You Tube. My favorite part is, “People leave you because they are not joined to you. And if they are not joined to you, you can’t make them stay. Let them go. And it doesn’t mean that they are a bad person. It just means that their part in the story is over.” What are you holding on to that is no longer helpful for your story? Let it go.

TriCia Guidry, MD, F.A.C.O.G. Obsterics and Gynecology • Board Certified Still accepting new OB/GYN patients • ThermaChoice Ablation (for heavy periods) & Essure Tubal can be performed in the office • We take most insurances

Unhealthy People. Maybe 2013 is the year you evaluate the people you have in your life. Are they healthy? Do they want you to be your best? Is the relationship a twoway street? If you continue to find yourself in situations where you feel like you are making all the effort, it’s time to let that go. If you feel worse at the end of your visits with her, let her go. If you feel like you are working so hard to keep him from leaving you, let him go. You are a wonderful person, and you deserve to be appreciated in your relationships. And don’t think I’m talking only about friendships. Plenty of people have had to disengage or distance themselves from family members when it was determined the family member was unhealthy and not willing to fix that. Loneliness. OK, let’s face it. In order for you to get brave enough to let all those unhealthy people go, you are first going to have to let go of your fear of being alone. If you get rid of all the unhealthy people in your life, you will find yourself alone more often. And that needs to become

January 2013

4150 Nelson Rd • Bldg C-10 Lake Charles, LA 70605 Phone: (337)474-0653 • Fax (337)474-0639

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Style & Beauty


The cold winter months have arrived, which means it is time to pile on the clothes. “Layering your garments can be tricky,” Catina Coats, owner of Catina Couture, said. “It can easily go from bundling up in style to lumpy and frumpy.” Here are some tips on fashionable layering, to keep you looking chic yet warm.

Layered Scarves, gloves and hats are essential items to achieve a layered look. These pieces don’t add much bulk to an outfit, but they do a good job of keeping you warm while enhancing your winter style. These items are super-stylish and come in a variety of patterns and colors to accessorize any outfit. Over the knee socks are a popular trend this year that do a great job of preventing icy toes! These tall socks are one of the easiest ways to lock in heat and they look adorable scrunched with boots. Leggings and tights may be thin, but worn under jeans or pants they provide an extra layer of cozy insulation. The same can be said for fitted, long sleeved tops. If you’re going for a polished and professional look, a fitted top under a cardigan and jacket is the warm way to go. “These base garments should fit like skin, the tighter the better,” Coats said. “Stick to a minimum of three layers to avoid looking too bulky.”

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by Haley Armand

Belts are an easy, fashionable way to instantly define your waist and give a chunky sweater some shape. Wearing a belt with lots of layers will help you to show off your feminine shape. Coats added that the point of layering clothing, besides warmth, is to display contrasting pieces. This is why layering with different colors and cuts looks amazing. Layering in a single color creates a frumpy effect, therefore to create a slimming effect pair a light colored, solid shirt and a bold colored vest or patterned scarf over to make you look like a work of art. Usually, lighter colors look best when worn under dark colors.

January 2013

Green with Envy Move over Tangerine Tango, Emerald green is the new ‘it’ color for 2013. Recently announced by Pantone LLC, as the color of the year, Emerald is described as lively, radiant and lush. The global authority on color says pantone 175641 is one of elegance and beauty, one that enhances our sense of well-being, balance and harmony. “Green is the most abundant hue in nature—the human eye sees more green than any other color in the spectrum,” said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, in a recent press release. “It’s also the color of growth, renewal, and prosperity—no other color conveys regeneration more than green. For centuries, many countries have chosen green to represent healing and unity.”

Emerald is a more lively green than Hunter green and is more muted than Kelly. As far as greens go, it’s a perfect medium and style experts say it can function as a neutral in the same way that a deep blue does. If you tend to be more comfortable with neutrals and are hoping to give your wardrobe a little bit push this year, Emerald is an effective and relatively safe way to do it. There are several ways to incorporate this year’s new black into your wardrobe including colored jeans, tops, purses, shoes and accessories. If you are wondering what colors to pair with it, consider light pinks, beige, gold or white.

Don’t Mask Your Imperfections.

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Dr. Mark Crawford, Medical Director

(337)310-1070 facehealth.net Cannot be combined with any other discount. Offer expires 2/28/2013

January 2013

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Style & Beauty

Protect Your Pout this Winter by Kristy Armand

Cozy fireplaces, warm sweaters, and chapped lips. All sure signs that winter has arrived. DO use protective products.

Winter takes a toll on your skin, and this includes your lips, according to Tana Garcia, skin care consultant with the Aesthetic Center in The Eye Clinic. “You can bundle up in layers to protect the rest of your body, but your lips are still exposed to the cold, wind, sun and dry air. Heated indoor air also contributes to the problem, robbing the skin and lips of moisture.” The lips are actually more vulnerable to seasonal elements than other parts of the body. The skin on the lips is thinner than facial skin and does not have the natural barrier function to protect them from environmental challenges.” You lose up to 10 times more moisture through your lips than you do elsewhere on your face or body,” says Garcia. “Colder weather can quickly lead to dehydrated, cracked, chapped lips.” She says chapped lips in winter are not inevitable, even for people who have battled the problem their entire lives. “You just have to know what to do and what not to do to protect your lips and keep them healthy.”

Your lip needs protection from the elements throughout the year, but especially during winter. Ideally, it’s best to protect before chapping occurs, but even if your lips are already chapped, they’ll heal faster if they are kept moist. Balms can be very effective but it’s important to use an emollient balm or ointment rather than a waxy stick treatment. Some common ingredients, such eucalyptus, menthol, and camphor, can actually increase dryness and irritation. Look for soothing ingredients such as castor oil, sunflower and safflower seed oil, shea butter and aloe. The sun can still damage lips in winter so be sure to use a product that provide SPF protection as well.

DO pamper your lips daily. Even though our lips are the most delicate part of the face, they are often the most neglected when it comes to daily cleansing and care. When you cleanse your face, be sure to cleanse your lips as well. The same applies to exfoliating, anti-aging treatments, nighttime treatments and moisturizing. “Remember, your lips actually need more attention, not less, to keep them healthy and attractive, so it’s important to work in a few steps of your morning and evening skin care routine just for them. Be sure to choose gentle products, recommended as safe for use on the lips.”

DON’T lick your lips. The instinct to lick your lips makes the chapping worse. Saliva contains digestive enzymes that help break down food. These can irritate the skin. In addition, as saliva evaporates, it dehydrates skin further.

Specific treatments just for lips, such as PCA’s peptide lip therapy, are also recommended. Garcia says this product, which won Prevention magazine’s “Defy Your Age” beauty award, provides several beneficial functions that improve overall lip health and appearance.

DON’T pick and peel. Scrubbing, picking, peeling or biting off skin flakes from the lips slows the healing process and can add to the irritation in this area. It can also cause bleeding, discomfort, and even infection.

DO drink plenty of water. This will help prevent dehydration, a major contributor to dry, chapped lips.

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For more information about lip care and treatments at the Aesthetic Center, call 310-1070 or visit www.facehealth.net.

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January 2013

There’s a in the

Cottage Shop District

There’s a new girl in town, and she’s bringing a classic, trendy shopping experience right to your fingertips! We understand that not everyone is a size 2, so we have a large and affordable selection for any woman looking to turn heads. We offer clothing and accessories for every season, including formals, jewelry, shoes and handbags. Our vision for the shop is similar to the vision of White House Black Market. We provide your classics in black and white with a little color in the center to add some fun. Come visit us in the Cottage District at Catina Couture!

(337) 433-5220 • Catina@CatinaCouture.com www.CatinaCouture.com 2706 Hodges Street • Lake Charles January 2013

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Mon - Sat: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm



Style & Beauty

to Ready Wear

Thrivin’ Up Your Outfit!! Sometimes fabulous finds in the stores aren’t so fabulous when they get introduced to other items in your closet. What do you do when you have a dynamic piece that doesn’t mix well with your current clothes? Let Thrive help! Whitney Manns, Thrive’s fashion guru, can help your lonely only’s find a welcoming place with other fashion pieces.


“The brown in this jacket is really dark. It’s hard to match it exactly with other brown shades. Should I keep trying brown or is there a better color that would go with it?”

Remember, if you have a fashion question for me, just email it to edit@thriveswla. com or post it on the Thrive Facebook page. It could be answered it an upcoming column. If yours is chosen, you’ll receive a Thrive t-shirt.


Mixing it with a solid outfit makes the jacket the statement piece. Using gray instead of brown is thinking outside the box but we could use chocolate brown under or even mix it up and do a chocolate brown skirt and a gray top. By adding the brown boots with brown tights we are bringing back in the jacket colors to work with the outfit underneath. The same explanation works for the chocolate pearls; it’s rich like the yellow in the jacket and yet blends with the brown. I added the brown purse instead of gray because accessories should reinforce the statement jacket. I selected a pencil skirt because of the style of the jacket. In order to balance out the non-fitted structure to the jacket, we needed to add a more slenderizing item to the bottom, whether it’s trouser pant with pointed-toe shoes, skinny jeans and brown boots or the skirt look.

Whitney Manns is the owner of WM Wardrobe Consulting. For more information, visit WMwardrobeconsulting.com

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January 2013


“What do I wear with a denim jacket? Since blue denim jeans are too much with a blue denim jacket, what are some other ideas?”


Denim jackets go with anything casual: black or navy pants or a fun dress. Brightly colored pants are also a great option. When pairing a denim jacket with fun, colored pants, try to keep the same color intensity by using a strong blue in the denim jacket, not a light chambray. These pants could be bright yellow, pea green or even a warm orange. Using a nude or metallic shoe is an easy solution to eliminate the harshness of wearing black or brown shoe when the outfit has neither color. An animal print shoe is also a great idea and adds a print to an otherwise solid outfit. If you opt for this shoe, keep the jewelry to a minimum with a simple gold necklace to avoid it getting too busy. If you choose to wear a bright pant, try to bring the color in elsewhere in a necklace or bracelet.


“I love this necklace, but now I’m not sure what to wear with it! Anything I try seems to compete with the necklace.”


Bib-type statement necklaces are extremely versatile! I put together three looks: dressy, funky fun, and office appropriate. For the dressy look, I chose somewhat simple-cut dresses one in navy and one in wine with a crew neckline so the necklace will lay properly and become the focal point of the outfit. Diamond or faux diamond studs work well with this look, and so do small pearl and diamond drops. In the more casual, funky outfit of a dress with boots, keep the neckline simple and add pearl studs to allow the necklace to take center stage. For the office look with the top and pants, I chose a v-neck shirt to allow the necklace to fill in the bare skin. Silver stud earrings complete the look.

January 2013

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



Host a SUPER Superbowl Party! Regardless of which two teams are facing off in the big game, the Super Bowl is undoubtedly one of the biggest sporting events of the year. In addition to the game, there is always a great deal of excitement surrounding the entertaining commercials that make their debut during the big game and, of course, no party is complete without great food. This year’s match-up is scheduled for Sunday, February 3, in New Orleans. Check out these tips and recipes that will have your guests raving about your party around the water cooler at work come Monday morning.


• Serve foods that take less than 15 minutes to prepare or heat up. Foods that are barbecued and grilled are most popular and require little clean-up when you are done. • Know what your guests are bringing if it is a pot-luck style party so there are a variety of options for guests to select from. • Be aware of any food allergies or dietary preferences your guests may have. It’s always good to have a few vegetarian options; a vegetable tray is always easy, just for variety too. • Have a variety of drinks (not just alcohol for the over21 crowd) such as water, juice and carbonated sodas just in case there are any kids or non-drinkers present.

Recipes Spicy-Sweet Deviled Eggs Ingredients • 1 dozen hard-cooked eggs, peeled • 1/2 cup mayonnaise • 3 tablespoons mango chutney • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper • Kosher salt to taste • Garnish: sliced fresh chives

Directions Cut eggs in half lengthwise; carefully remove yolks. Mash yolks; stir in mayonnaise, chutney, and red pepper until blended. Spoon yolk mixture evenly into egg white halves. Sprinkle evenly with desired amount of salt. Garnish, if desired. Chill until ready to serve. Source: Southern Living

Slow Cooker Wings • • • •

3 lbs chicken wings (approx. 16-18 wings) salt and black pepper 2 cups honey 1 cup soy sauce (can use reduced sodium) • 1/2 cup your favorite bottled barbecue sauce • 1/4 cup oil • 2 cloves garlic, minced Directions 1. Cut off and discard wing tips. 2. Cut each wing at joint to make two sections. 3. Rinse wings, drain and pat dry with paper towels. 4. Season wings with salt and pepper, to taste. 5. Place wings on broiler pan and broil about 6 inches from heat for 10 minutes on each side OR until brown. 6. Transfer wings to slow cooker. 7. Combine remaining ingredients in a bowl; pour over chicken wings. 8. Cover and place slow cooker on high for 2 hours or low for 4 hours. Source: www.food.com

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January 2013

Celebrate Louisiana Heritage at One Best Impressions of the ‘Oldest and Coldest’ Festivals

Modern Day Manners & Everyday Etiquette by Rose Klein

A Southwest Louisiana favorite since 1955, the 55th Annual Louisiana Fur and Wildlife Festival highlights all the local, natural resource industries in the area. The festival caters to all ages and interests featuring parades, pageants, dances, Cajun music, exhibits and a carnival. Not to mention some unique contests like trap setting, nutria and muskrat skinning, oyster shucking and skeet shooting.

Located across from the Cameron Parish School Board grounds in downtown Cameron, gates will open at noon on Friday and at 9 a.m. on Saturday. The admission fee is $5 per person, and children 12 years old and under will be admitted free.

2013 Schedule of Events Friday, January 11 10:00am 12:00pm 6:30pm

Dog Trials Gates open Trap Shooting Begins Carnival will open Nik-L-Beer takes the stage

Saturday, January 12 7:00am Gumbo Cook-Off begins 9:00am Gates open Fairgrounds Open Carnival Opens Trap Shooting Begins 10:00am Muskrat and Nutria Skinning Trap Setting Oyster Shucking Dog Trial 11:30am Gumbo Cookoff Judging on the Fairgrounds 1:00pm Parade Begins (will line up at Cameron Construction Yard east of Cameron) 3:00pm Duck and Goose Calling Competition 3:00pm Steel Shot takes the stage. 7:00 pm Don Rich takes the stage.

Q: I’m sure you’ve addressed this before, but can you review what RSVP means because, clearly, some people have no clue. A: Might I guess that you’ve recently thrown a party and you didn’t get a very good headcount? RSVP actually is an abbreviation for the French words “respondez s’il vous plait.” When printed on an invitation, it means that the invited guest needs to tell the host whether or not they plan to attend the function. It does not mean to respond only if the invitee is not planning to attend nor does it mean to respond only if the invitee is planning to attend. If the host only wants to hear from people who are not able to attend, then RSVP-Regrets Only is printed on the invitation. RSVP loosely translated means the host needs a headcount by the date noted so appropriate plans can be made including amount of food, seating, etc. It is rude not to respond as requested. Q: My husband recently lost his job and we have received invitations to several weddings, birthday parties and anniversary celebrations taking place in the next few months. As much as we would like to, giving gifts for these occasions (which is something we would normally happily do) would truly be a financial hardship for us at this time. How should we handle this? A: I am sure that your friends and family understand your circumstances and would not want to be the source of any additional stress or financial burden during this time. Perhaps a card or personal note expressing your thoughts about what these individuals mean to you, how they impact your lives and what you wish for them as they mark their particular milestone would be just as meaningful as a wrapped gift, if not more so.

Submit your etiquette questions to: edit@thriveswla.com.

For complete details, visit www lafurandwildlifefestival.com.

January 2013

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Community Contributor$ Pinnacle Entertainment Foundation and L’Auberge Sponsor Lake Charles Civic Ballet

McDonald’s of SWLA and Billy Navarre Chevrolet Cadillac Support Mid-City Little League Baseball

The Pinnacle Entertainment Foundation, operated by the parent company of L’Auberge Casino Resort, donated $5,000 to the Lake Charles Civic Ballet.

McDonald’s of Southwest Louisiana and Billy Navarre Chevrolet Cadillac donated $14,000 to Mid-City Little League Baseball.

L to R: Kerry Andersen, corporate director of media relations & public affairs for Pinnacle Entertainment; Julie Ragusa, L’Auberge vice president of marketing & LCCB board member; Lady Holly Hathaway Kaough, LCCB artistic director; and Donita Helms, LCCB president.

CenterPoint Energy Donate to United Way Employees of CenterPoint Energy presented United Way of Southwest Louisiana with a check for $11,498.

L to R: Scott Faulk, district director; Blaine Spell, district operations manager; Brittney Welch, assistant; Brittany Chandler, marketing consultant for CenterPoint Energy and Becky Ainsworth, resource development associate for United Way of SWLA.

New location next door to Tony’s Pizza!

L to R: Ryan Navarre of Billy Navarre Chevrolet Cadillac; Reggie Lewis, Mid-City Little League president; Doug Gehrig, owner and operator of McDonald’s of Southwest Louisiana; and Mack Dellafosse, Mid-City Little League treasurer.

United Way Supports Sandy Hook Following Recent Tragedy United Way of Southwest Louisiana has made a donation to the Sandy Hook School Support fund to help provide support services to the community and families of Newton, Connecticut, following the December 14 tragedy that took the lives of six adults and 20 children.The United Way of Western Connecticut established the fund in partnership with Newtown Savings Bank. The $1,000 donation made by United Way of Southwest Louisiana is a show of support for a community that has been embraced by a nation.To donate to the Sandy Hook School Support fund, individuals and organizations can send checks to: Sandy Hook School Support Fund c/o Newtown Savings bank 39 Main Street, Newtown CT 06470 For questions about the fund, call 800-461-0672.

For every event…

Make it sweet! Cupcakes, Cakes & Specialty Desserts

New Expanded Menu and Drive-thru for your convenience! 341 East Prien Lake Road • Monday-Saturday: 10-6PM • 337-496-7471 • www.sweetchicbakeryboutique.com 84 www.thriveswla.com

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January 2013

McNeese Corral

McNeese Chemistry Professor Honored

Dr. Kalil P. Ieyoub, retired chemistry professor, chemistry department head, dean of the college of science and vice president for administration and student affairs at McNeese State University, was honored by the university with Professor Emeritus status. A native of Lake Charles, Ieyoub received his Bachelor of Science degree from McNeese and both his Master of Science and doctorate degrees in organic chemistry from Louisiana State University. Only a select few receive this recognition for their service to the university.

Citgo Donates to McNeese College of Business

CITGO Petroleum Corp. presented a $5,000 donation to the McNeese State University Foundation for accounting/finance scholarships in the McNeese College of Business.

L to R: Rhonda Reed, Citgo senior auditor; Mickey Mancuso, Citgo human resources consultant; and Dr. Musa Essayyad, college dean.

Annual Holiday Card Winner Announced McNeese State University College of Science Dean George Mead, from left, and Dr. B.E. Hankins, retired provost and vice president for academic affairs and himself an emeritus honoree, present Dr. Kalil P. Ieyoub, retired chemistry professor, chemistry department head, dean of the college of science and vice president for administration and student affairs at McNeese, with a certificate honoring him as Professor Emeritus. McNeese Photo

Citgo Donates to McNeese Engineering Department CITGO Petroleum Corp. presented a $10,000 donation to the McNeese State University Foundation for chemical and mechanical engineering scholarships in the McNeese College of Engineering and Engineering Technology.

L to R: Dr. John Griffith Jr., professor and head of the engineering department; Mickey Mancuso, Citgo human resources consultant; and Tomeu Vadell, vice president and general manager for the Lake Charles Manufacturing Complex.

Phillip Partin, a Lake Charles sophomore management major at McNeese State University, won the annual McNeese President’s Holiday Card Contest. Partin’s winning design Phillip Partin receives a gift card from McNeese President, appears on the Dr. Philip Williams as the front of McNeese’s winner of this year’s President’s official holiday card. Holiday Card Contest He received a $100 McNeese bookstore gift card for his winning card design.

LeJeune Receives Philo Brasher Emerging Leadership Award Erica LeJeune, stafford loan manager in the financial aid office at McNeese, received the Philo Brasher Emerging Leadership Award at Erica LeJeune the recent SWASFAA conference. This award is named after former McNeese Assistant Director of Financial Aid Philo Brasher who served as treasurer of SWASFAA for several years and provided extraordinary leadership to the organization.

Savoit Honored with Regional Leadership Award

Taina Savoit, director of financial aid at McNeese State University, was one of six individuals honored with a Regional Leadership Award by the National Association Taina Savoit of Student Financial Aid Administrators at the 2012 Southwest Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators conference in San Antonio, Texas.

Chemistry and Physics Department Recognized Students The McNeese Department of Chemistry and Physics recently recognized chemistry students at its annual awards ceremony. This year’s recipients of the Chemistry Excellence Awards for undergraduates are: Ngan Nguyen, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Chelsie Morein, Lake Charles, and Hailey Veillion, Thibodaux, sophomores; Tatiana Estrada-Mendoza, Ibarra, Ecuador, Manish Singh, Kathmandu, Nepal, Logan Metz, Shreveport, and Lauren Snider, Lake Charles, juniors; Elizabeth Sullivan, Lake Charles, Anjela Manandhar, Kathmandu, Nepal, Shreedu Pradhan, Kathmandu, Nepal, and Sonia Adtani, Lake Charles, seniors. Outstanding Research Student Awards went to: Pradhan, Manandhar and Erik Sneddon, Lake Charles. Pradhan was also awarded the James David Tauber Chemistry Scholarship while Morein was awarded the Eugene Cox Scholarship. Faith Redwine-Hawkins, San Antonio, Texas, was named the Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant.

First Federal Bank of Louisiana Donates First Federal Bank of Louisiana donated $5,000 to McNeese State University through the McNeese Foundation for the C. Marshall Abadie Memorial Scholarship fund it established several years ago.

L to R: Charles V. Timpa, president and CEO of First Federal Bank and a Foundation board member; ıvice president and marketing director of First Federal Bank;and Dr. Musa Essayyad, dean of the McNeese College of Business. January 2013

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Habitat Earth: Inspiring Action After a recent visit to Southwest Louisiana’s Naturelab, a local child and her parents rescued a turtle that was found in danger near the road. The young student was inspired to protect the turtle after learning how her actions impact the planet. This lesson is a key component of earth systems education and one of the main objectives of Naturelab, a PPG facility operated by McNeese State University. Naturelab offers a new approach to outdoor learning in Southwest Louisiana. Located just west of the PPG complex, Naturelab features more than 10,000 feet of trails and provides a multitude of learning opportunities about natural wildlife and plants, ecology, conservation, species diversity and much more for area students.

Book a class field trip to Naturelab today. Contact Gary Kratzer at 337-475-5817 or by email at gkratzer@mcneese.edu.


Lake Charles Complex

“ It is important for students to understand the role that they play individually in the human relationship with Earth,”said Gary Kratzer, Naturelab Coordinator. “Whether intentional or unintentional, we all impact the Earth and there’s a lot we can teach our children about how to recognize their role in protecting the environment.” Gary Kratzer is Naturelab’s Project Coordinator for McNeese State University. He retired in 2011 after teaching science in the public school system for over 36 years. Gary brings his love for science and the classroom into the field of outdoor environmental education. His experience as a teacher allows him to relate to the educational goals and objectives of teachers as well as understand the world through the eyes of the young student. 86 www.thriveswla.com

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Gary Kratzer, Naturelab Project Coordinator January 2013

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