LEXINGTON’S MOST READ MAGAZINE TOPSINLEX L e x i n g t o n ’s M o s t R e a d M a g a z i n e
Priceless | February 2012
Februar y 2012 vol. 6 no. 2
Readers’ Love Stories | Cabin in the Woods | Abundant Living Finalists
Volume 6, No. 2
LEXINGTON’S MOST READ MAGAZINE
TOP EVENTS 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 106
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Contributing Writers Hallie Bandy, Ed Bodkin, Kristin Espeland Gourlay, Blake Hannon, Amanda Harper, Marsha Koller, Michele Landers, Buffy Lawson, Austin McKinney, Michelle Rauch, Kathie Stamps, Katherine Van Hook
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Out & About Black History Month Abundant Living Contest Finalists Community Spotlight: Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates (KODA) 50 Giving and Receiving the Gift of Life 56 Love Stories 86 Cozy Cabin in the Woods 98 Meet the Media: Bill Meck 122 WOW Wedding: Brock & Luke Maitland 129 Wedding Announcements 130 TOP Shots
64 Date Fashion by Katherine Van Hook 104 Business News
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Cover Photo by Melanie Mauer Photography Contributing Photographers Paul Atkinson Darryl McLean Jordan Damron Greg Mobley David Desjardins Alex Orlov Dr. Michael Huang Shaun Ring Jaron Johns Karl Schroeder Judy & Brian Myers
114 116 118
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Lexington Charity Club Ball UK Opera Presents Romeo & Juliet Bluegrass Youth Ballet Presents The Nutcracker New Year’s Eve Around Lexington Horse Aid Live! Martin Luther King Day Commemorative March UK Basketball LAL & QX.net Preview Party for Body, Figure, Nude Lexington Yacht Club Installation of Officers African American Ball Lex. Philharmonic Presents “And the Award Goes To . . .” Kentucky Chamber Day Women Leading Kentucky Roundtable UK’s OLLI Donovan Fellowship Luncheon
14 62 65 66 75 78 81 83 84 97 121
Community Calendar The Melting Pot Date Etiquette Date Ideas Romantic Movie Suggestions Posh Pets Romantic Dinner(s) Relationships TOP Design Vertical Gardens The Proposal
CORRECTION TO PREVIOUS ISSUE: On page 129 Crystal Nicole (Mount) Newton’s first name was misspelled.
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TOP HAPPENINGS Our Topparazzi photographers are everywhere! Please check our website for updated event information and please be aware of the changing nature of events.
February 1 Black History Month Lecture 7:30PM-9PM Translyvania University transy.edu
February 2 UK Women’s Basketball v Ole Miss 7PM Memorial Collesium The Clean House 8PM Actors Guild of Lexington
February 3 Taffetas: A Musical Journey Through the 50’s 7PM June Morning Hall, Richmond rosebarntheatre.org Tails & Ales 2012 7PM-10PM Marriott Griffin Gate adoptlove.net Bluegrass Invitational Wheelchair Tournament 10AM-6PM UK Seaton Center lexingtonky.gov The Clean House 8PM Actors Guild of Lexington
February 4 Oh Deer! 11AM The Arboretum ca.uky.edu/arboretum
Lewis Black 8PM Taft Theatre, Cincinnati tafttheatre.org Mid-Knight Stakes 5:30PM Lexington Catholic High School Taffetas: A Musical Journey Through the 50’s 7PM June Morning Hall, Richmond rosebarntheatre.org Bluegrass Invitational Wheelchair Tournament 8:30AM-6:30PM UK Seaton Center lexingtonky.gov The Clean House 8PM Actors Guild of Lexington
February 5 Taffetas: A Musical Journey Through the 50’s 3PM June Morning Hall, Richmond rosebarntheatre.org Bluegrass Invitational Wheelchair Tournament 8:30AM-6:30PM UK Seaton Center lexingtonky.gov The Clean House 8PM Actors Guild of Lexington
February 7 UK Men’s Basketball v Florida 7PM Rupp Arena ukathletics.com
February 9 Creative Intelligence Lecture Series 12:15PM-1:30PM Transylvania University transy.edu 2012 Kentucky Sport Boat and Recreation Show 1PM-9PM Rupp Arena
February 10 The Rivalry 8PM Norton Center, Danville nortoncenter.com
February 11 Natasha Paremski piano with UK Symphony Orchestra 7:30PM Singletary Center uky.edu/scfa Lexington Ballet: Ion Dance 8PM Lyric Theatre lexingtonlyric.com Growing the Giants 10AM The Arboretum Hepcats Valentine Swing Dance 8PM-12AM Arthur Murray Dance Studio luv2swingdance.com 22nd Annual H’Artful of Fun 8PM-11PM Big Ass Fans lasclex.org
What To Do
The Kentucky Magic Dinner Theater 6PM deSha’s kentuckmagictheater.com Heart Sole & Glove 5K Run/Walk 10AM Embassy Suites uky.edu Woodford Humane Society’s Feline Valentine 11AM-3PM Artique Lexington Green woodfordhumane.org
February 12 Richard Bell: Uz vs Them UK Art Museum uky.edu/artmuseum
February 13 Glories of the Garden Art Exhibit 8:30AM-4PM The Arboretum The BeLoved Gala 7PM Trust Lounge be-loved.cc/gala
February 14 Love the Earth! 10AM The Arboretum Singing Valentines 10AM-8PM unbridledharmony.org
February 15 Creative Intelligence Lecture Series 4:30PM-5:30PM Transylvania University transy.edu
February 16 NAWBO Chocolate Affaire 5:30PM-7:30PM Don Jacobs BMW lexnawbo.org
February 17 LexArts Gallery Hop 5PM-8PM 161 N Mill St galleryhoplex.com
February 18 UK Men’s Basketball v Ole Miss 4PM Rupp Arena ukathletics.com
February 19 Disney LIVE! Three Classic Fairy Tales 1PM & 4PM Rupp Arena
February 24 Fifth Third Bank 4th Friday 6PM-9PM LAL @ Loudon House lexingtonartleague.org New Home & Remodeling Marketplace 4PM-8PM Alltech Arena, Kentucky Horse Park hbalexington.com Art in Bloom 12PM-5PM UK Art Museum
Falstaff Creative Intelligence Lecture 7:30PM-9:30PM Lexington Opera Series House February 25 7:30PM-9PM Transylvania University transy.edu 24th Annual Central Kentucky Heart and Stroke Ball Disney LIVE! Three Classic Fairy Lexington Center Tales heart.org/lexingtonkyheartball 11AM Rupp Arena Old Friends Along the Kentucky Presidents Day at Mary Todd Bourbon Trail Lincoln House 6PM Seelbach Hilton, Louisville oldfriendsequine.org 11AM-2PM Mary Todd Lincoln House UK Men’s Basketball v Vanderbilt mtlhouse.org 12PM Rupp Arena ukathletics.com UK Women’s Basketball v Vanderbilt New Home & Remodeling 9PM Memorial Colliseum Marketplace ukathletics.com 10AM-6PM Alltech Arena, Kentucky Horse Park February 21 hbalexington.com All About Roses 10AM The Arboretum Falstaff 2PM-4PM Lexington Opera House
UK Women’s Basketball v S Carolina 7PM Memorial Colliseum Big Blue Slam Blood Drive 10AM Singletary Center
February 26 New Home & Remodeling Marketplace 11AM-4PM Alltech Arena, Kentucky Horse Park hbalexington.com
Out & About Paul Atkinson and Andrea Coates
Amanda Harper and Danielle Pope at the LexScene Preview Party
Howie Rackmil and Brooke Pohl
Payton Trosclair, Mary Hartley, Linda Van Meter & Caroline Friesen at Boucle Open House
Ron Smith, Dan Bork, Luther Deaton, Steve Lochmueller, Elizabeth McCoy, Steve Grossman & Paula Hanson www.topsinlex.com
Allen McDaniel, Joe Conley, Carl Walter and Chris Benezet
Laura Hillard, Allison Wrenne and Amanda Milward
Chasity & Bryan Raisor
Chapman & Ashley Hopkins
Jed & Leah Kerkhoff
Tate Sherman, Kelly Russell and Catherine Edelen
Lexington Charity Club 9th Annual Christmas Benefit The Lexington Charity Club hosted its signature Christmas party Friday, Dec. 23 at ArtsPlace in downtown Lexington. This semiformal event, in itâ€™s ninth year of success, featured live music, dancing and fun. Proceeds from the event benefitted the Pinkstaff Clinic at the University of Kentucky Childrenâ€™s Hospital. lexingtoncharityclub.com Photos by Paul Atkinson
Ann Tucker, Charlie Clarke, Julie LaDouceur, Harrison Clarke and Pearce Clarke
Julie LaDouceur and Gregory Turay
Maestro John Nardolillo, Dr. McCorvey and Dr. Lance Brunner
Ann Tucker and Terry Keys
UK Opera Presents Romeo et Juliette UK Opera’s production of Romeo et Juliette was a beautifully put together operatic production of William Shakespeare’s classic. The stars, Gregory Turay and Julie LaDouceur, inspired so much emotion and passion into the production, that parting with them really was “sweet sorrow.” ukoperatheatre.org Photos by David Desjardins
Sophie and Christina Bell
Heather Feese, Emma Gearon, Antonia Fisher and Zoey Barrett
Beverly, Kate and Doug Cox
Gillian Perry, Jen Levine, Connor Perry, Adalhi Aranda Corn and Adalhi Elena Corn
Addi Flynn, Aya Nicholls, Sammi-Jo Sakamaki, Chloee Adams and Sophia Voskuhl
Linda Frank-Gearon, Amelia Caldwell, Emma Gearon and Ana Fisher
Bluegrass Youth Ballet Presents The Nutcracker Bluegrass Youth Ballet performed their signature â€œThe Nutcracker In One Actâ€? at the Lyric Theatre on December 9-11, 2011. Under the Direction of Adalhi Aranda Corn, Bluegrass Youth Ballet dancers performed two school performances and four public performances. The enchanting production is colorful, creative, fun, and showcases some wonderful talent from the Lexington community. bluegrassyouthballet.com Photos by David Desjardins
New Year’s Eve around Lexington Here in Lexington, we rang in the New Year in style! Celebrations spanned the city from Harvey’s and Hugo’s to Skybar and from The Castle Post to Double Tree Suites. It was a great year for Lexington, so here’s to an even better 2012! topsinlex.com Photos by Jordan Damron, David Desjardins and Alex Orlov
Bob Estes and Joy Breeding
Cyndi Greathouse, Matt Wills and Amy Wills
Kristin Posner and Susan Posner
Bill Griffin and Anni Hulbert
Tony Cissell and Lindy Robinson
Horse Aid Live! at Parlay Social Horse Aid Live teamed with Parlay Social on Thursday, December 29 to raise money for unwanted horses. Pure Blue Vodka and Devil John Moonshine provided signature drink specials. Banner Elk Winery & Villa and Jennifer and Patrick Madden sponsored a Sparkling Getaway Raffle. The crowd danced to the band Domino into the morning hours! Thousands were raised toward grants for equine shelters, retraining, and rehabilitation facilities. horseaidlive.org Photos by Paul Atkinson
Martin Luther King Day Commemorative March Lexington celebrated the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a march downtown beginning and ending at Lexington Center Heritage Hall on West Main Street. Students, professionals and activist groups gathered to commemorate the great strides Dr. King took for racial equality and the life he dedicated to the civil rights movement. uky.edu/MLK/index.html Photos by Alex Orlov
UK Basketball The Wildcats started the New Year right with a victory over Pitinoâ€™s Cardinals. Freshman Anthony Davis has already broken the season record for blocked shots, and we still have so many more exciting games to go! Keep it up Big Blue Nation! ukathletics.com Photos by Dr. Michael Huang
Celebrating Black History Month The Kentucky Connection
by Kathie Stamps
February has been designated as Black History Month by presidential proclamation since 1976. In Lexington and throughout Kentucky, African-Americans have made, are currently making and will continue to make — significant contributions that enrich the quality of life in the Bluegrass.
ventions were a gas mask and a traffic signal. William Ballard is believed to be the first minority business owner in Lexington. In 1893 he opened Ballard’s Pharmacy, not too far from his birthplace in Franklin County. He was also involved with a realty business and cemetery company.
“In Black and White” is an exhibit of photographs and prints at the Lexington History Museum downtown, funded by a grant from the Kentucky Humanities Council, in conjunction with the African American Studies and Research Program at the University of Kentucky, whose director is Gerald Smith, Ph.D.
Willa Brown Chappell was the first AfricanAmerican woman to get a private pilot’s license and the first to make a career of aviation. She also earned a master mechanic’s certificate. Born in Glasgow, Ky., in 1906, she was a cofounder of the National Airmen Association of America and the Coffey School of Aeronautics in Chicago. Many of the aviation students Willa Brown Chappell who trained at the Coffey School would become Tuskegee Airmen, who dramatically influenced integration in the armed forces in 1948. Chappell was inducted into the Kentucky Aviation Hall of Fame in 2003. The Hall of Fame is located at the Aviation Museum of Kentucky at Blue Grass Airport.
“Some of the photos are parts of other collections, but for the most part they came out of family albums,” said Jamie Millard, the museum’s president and CEO. “It is one of the original exhibits when the museum opened in October 2003.” There are also class photos from the original Dunbar High School, as well as photographs of choirs and sports teams. Millard and museum staff members came up with a low-tech way for visitors to interact with the exhibit. “We have Post-it notes and we invite people to react to a photo,” he said. The Lexington History Museum is open Friday through Monday noon to 4. April through October it is open seven days a week.
Garrett A. Morgan
Garrett A. Morgan (1877-1963) was an inventor from Bourbon County. Two of his patented in-
Sports If you’ve wondered about the Oliver Lewis Way sign on Main Street at Newtown, this portion of the Newtown Pike extension
Photos courtesy of: Aviation Museum of Kentucky, UK Athletics, Keeneland, Lexington History Muscum Collection, Tammy Lane of Fayette County Public Schools and Ricky Sizemore, Engineer, KYTC-District 7
Who’s Who is named after the jockey who won the first Kentucky Derby, which debuted on May 17, 1875, at Churchill Downs.
Defensive back Emmett “Buzz” Burnam, from Winchester, joined the Wildcats in 1969. “They recruited six student-athletes to UK that year,” he said, “the most ever in the history of UK at that time.” The other freshmen recruits for new head coach John Ray were Cecil Bowens, Darryl Bishop, Arvel Carroll, Bill Denny and Carey Eaves, all of whom joined Wilbur Hackett and Houston Hogg on Stoll Field at McLean Stadium.
The University of Kentucky was the first sports program in the SEC to integrate. In December 1965 Nat Northington, from Louisville, signed a national letter of intent to play football at UK under coach Charlie Bradshaw. Greg Page, a defensive end from Middlesboro, signed shortly thereafter. Both of these scholarship athletes were freshmen Nat Northington
in the fall of 1966, but were ineligible to play varsity. (The NCAA changed that rule in 1972). In 1967 they were sophomores, but Page never played in a game. He suffered a paralyzing neck injury in practice, during a routine drill, on Aug. 22 and died Sept. 29. Northington played in the first four games of the ’67 season
Burnam went on to be a graduate assistant coach under Fran Curci, whose first year, 1973, was at the brand-new Commonwealth Stadium. After getting a master’s degree in educational psychology and counseling in 1974, Burnam got a job with the Urban League and soon returned to UK. “I’ve been at UK for 33 years,” he said.
Emmett “Buzz” Burnam
As the director for diversity undergraduate student recruitment, Burnam leads a series of diversity programs for high school students. “We bring students to UK’s campus and give them the Big Blue carpet treatment,” he said. “They find out about the admissions process, scholarship opportunities, academic programs, retention services, summer programs, student organizations and study abroad opportunities that are available for UK students. They also meet currently enrolled diversity students and faculty, the UK “Divine Nine” Greek organizations and, of course, tour the UK campus.” Health Care Dr. John E. Hunter had a 63-year medical career at Saint Joseph Hospital, beginning in 1889. One of his first surgeries was also the first successful bowel operation, on a patient with a gunshot wound. When Saint Joseph opened a new cafeteria at the hospital (then located on Second Street) on Sept. 3, 1951, it was integrated from day one.
New York Public Library
It was the feature race, one of four scheduled at the track that day — a Monday, by the way. With a field of 15 horses, 13 of the jockeys aboard were black, including Lewis, who was born in Fayette County. He is buried in African Cemetery No. 2 on Seventh Street. The inaugural Kentucky Derby winner, a 3-yearold chestnut colt named Aristides, was trained Ansel Williamson.
but transferred mid-semester to Western Kentucky University. In honor of Page, the university named a student housing complex after him. The Greg Page Apartments were built in 1979; today the units are assigned for graduate students and family housing.
Who’s Who Hunter is mentioned on a historic marker in downtown Lexington, along with Obed Cooley, Nathaniel J. Ridley, J.C. Coleman and Joseph Laine. Hunter’s son, Dr. Bush A. Hunter, entered medicine in 1926 and had a 50-year medical practice in Lexington. In 1963 he was the first black physician to become a member of the Lexington Medical Society, then known as the Fayette County Medical Society. Music Rosa Deschamps Henderson was born in Henderson, Ky., in the late 1800s. She performed in musical comedies in the 1920s in New York and London and was one of the first female singers to perform with a big band. Lexingtonian Edgar J. Hayes (1904-1979), a piano player and Rosa Henderson bandleader, had a hit in 1938 with his version of “Stardust.” Also in the 1920s, Jessamine County’s Jim Booker was a fiddler and recording artist. Lionel Hampton was born in Louisville in 1908. A drummer, he is better known for playing the vibraphone and being one of the jazz greats of the 20th century. He was inducted, posthumously, in the 2006 class Lionel Hampton of the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame. The Kentucky Music Hall of Fame and Museum is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year at Renfro Valley.
Education Several Fayette County public schools are named after AfricanAmericans, including Booker T. Washington Academy, Martin Luther King Jr. Academy and Rosa Parks Elementary School. Edythe J. Hayes Middle School opened in the fall of 2004. Hayes was a Lexington elementary school teacher, principal and the first African-American deputy superintendent of the county’s school system. She died in 1999. In 2008 William Wells Brown Elementary School replaced the Johnson and Russell elementary schools. Brown was born in Lexington in 1818. An author and lecturer, his 1853 book Clotel is considered to be the first novel published by a black author. In the fall of 2012, Carter G. Woodson Academy will open at Crawford Middle School, a new program for boys in 6th through 9th grades. Woodson (1875-1950) earned an undergraduate degree in literature at Berea College and a Ph.D. in history at Harvard University in 1912. Woodson was the second African-American to receive a doctoral degree from Harvard; the first was W.E.B. Du Bois in 1895, who co-founded the NAACP. Woodson is known as the father of Black History Month. Paul Laurence Dunbar was a poet and novelist. He was born in 1872 in Dayton, Ohio, but his parents were from Kentucky. On North Upper Street, now the site of Dunbar Community Center, the original Paul Laurence Dunbar High School opened in 1923 and closed in 1967. When a new high school was built on Man O’ War in 1990, it was named Paul Laurence Dunbar High School. At the modern school there’s an archive room with memorabilia from the old school. “It’s on display for students and people in the community,” said Steve Duerson, the school’s social worker. Duerson is the faculty adviser of Leaders in the Making, an extracurricular club. Students are working on quite a few projects for Black History Month. A mascot mural is being painted on a wall in the Dunbar Room, featuring the bearcat from the original high school and the bulldog from the current school, with their arms around each other. The Dunbar Alumni Association will be honored at an event on Feb. 29. “The assembly will feature the talents and history of African-Americans,” Duerson said. Alumni members in the audience will be introduced and a documentary will be shown. Students are putting the video together, which features interviews with alumni from the original Dunbar.
TOPSinLex, ABC36, and Abundant Living Medical have joined forces with some of the TOP businesses in Lexington, including Skin Solutions, Fred Schroeder, D.M.D., Urban Active, Triple Crown Chiropractic and Mr. Sparkle to provide two grand prize winners with a once in a lifetime opportunity to be totally transformed! This giveaway is more than just a makeover — we’re going beyond physical appearance, changing our winners’ lives from the inside out! The following pages feature our twelve finalists. Log on to Topsinlex.com to vote for the person you feel should win the Abundant Transformation and see a list of prizes they will receive.
Voting Starts February 1, 2012
You decide the winners at topsinlex.com Profiles by Austin McKinney Photography by Karl Schroeder
Andrea Hunt Andrea’s story is truly moving. In 2009, she gave birth to her daughter. Like many women, Andrea gained weight rapidly as a result of her pregnancy, and struggled to lose the weight afterward. A year later, after years of struggling with diabetes, endstage renal failure had left her father on dialysis and it was discovered that Andrea was the best donor candidate in her family. To prepare her body for surgery, Andrea worked hard all year to shed her excess weight, but struggled all the while. Though she was unable to lose the weight the transplant counselors wanted, she did manage to avoid gaining weight and the surgery finally proceeded successfully in March 2011. Looking back on these events, Andrea remarks, “Though recovery was difficult, I was able to spend some quality time with my dad in those weeks. We now share something indescribably rare and precious because of what we’ve gone through together.” Today, Andrea is a 31-year-old devoted wife and mother. She counts many blessings in her life, “a satisfying career, a close-knit family, a supportive husband, and a sweet two year old daughter. I don’t take those for granted, but the constant fighting against my body haunts me…” Andrea says she is determined to make a big change in her life and set a good example for her young daughter; “I’m facing my last real chance to reach a healthy weight…I want my daughter to escape what has troubled me.”
Christie Volpenhein Christie is an incredible woman who overcame great odds to achieve amazing success. Christie became pregnant when she was just 16 years old. Despite the burden of being a teen mom, she was determined to press on and never give up. Christie remarks, “I decided early on that I would be a success and overcome the stigma associated with the “teen mom” title.” Christie went on to graduate from high school with honors, later attending college on an academic scholarship and achieving several degrees. Her hard work allowed her to fulfill her dream of becoming a teacher. Today, Christie teaches Computer Technology at the Mary Queen of the Holy Rosary School in Lexington, KY. She is a 35-year-old wife and mother of three sons, ages 18, 10, and 2. Christie says, “I have fought so hard to prove to others that I am an accomplished woman that I have lost sight of what I need for myself. I need to be energetic, healthy, and most of all, happy with who I am. I can picture myself active, thin and smiling again, but I need the support system to help me achieve this medically, emotionally and financially.”
Connie Cohenour Connie is a 30-year-old proud mother of 4 great children. She loves spending time with her kids, but wishes she could be more involved in their daily activities. Connie remarks, “I don’t want to sit on the sidelines of life anymore. I want to be up front and center. I don’t want to watch my children play outside. I want to have the energy to get up and play outside with them.” Connie loves her children and wants to play a more active role in their lives. She is afraid that if she doesn’t lose weight, she may not get the chance to see her children grow up. Connie expressed her frustration with being overweight, “I have tried diet after diet and nothing seems to get this weight off. I am hoping that with the services provided, I will be able to overcome obesity.” If selected as a finalist, Connie says she hopes to pay her prize forward, sharing her story with those in the community as a source of inspiration. Connie says, “I hope and pray that I am a finalist in this contest . . . Winning will help me get my life back by becoming healthier, happier, and being here to see my children grow up. I don’t just want this, I need this.”
Daniel Fleisher Sargeant Daniel Fleisher is one of Lexington’s finest boys in blue. Danny has served as a Lexington Police Officer for over 22 years. During that time, he and his wife have raised 3 children to young adulthood, ensuring his kids were always involved in various sports and activities. Despite working third shift (9:00pm-8:00am), Danny has always taken an active role in his family, career and community. He has participated in his children’s school and athletic activities, serving as a homeroom parent in elementary schools, marking soccer fields in high schools, selling concessions at games and eventsas well as transporting Girl Scout cookies! In 2011, Danny was recognized for his outstanding service, receiving a Medal of Merit after rescuing a suicidal woman and preventing her from jumping to her death. As a Field Training Officer, Danny has personally trained 40 of the department’s best and brightest officers. After his many years of service, the stress and toil of his job are finally catching up with Danny, leaving him struggling with several serious medical issues. Danny says the treatments included in this transformation will motivate others on the department to complete physical fitness tests, “if I can do it, anyone can.”
Dawn Carole McGee Dawn is a warm, loving mother and caregiver to her family of four. Though she once had a successful career in broadcasting, she was forced to leave her job to care for her special needs son, Cameron. Her husband Jim, who nominated Dawn for this contest, admires his wife’s strength and determination; “ We’ve all come together as a very close and understanding family over the years through hard work and sacrifice. The hard work and sacrifice mainly have come from my wife.” Despite the demands of caring for her family, Dawn has remained active in her community, working with the Lexington Theatre and cooking for a sorority house three days a week. Dawn is soon to turn 48 this year and she hopes this contest will improve her ability to provide care to her family, especially her disabled son, “I am sure the improvements to my appearance will put me in a better mood, but the improvements to my health will be the most important thing to me . . . my disabled son counts on me as his caregiver. He needs me healthy and strong — I can do this, but I need help!”
Jana Brown Jana has struggled with medical issues for many years. Jana suffers from Lupus, a systemic autoimmune disease, which can harm the heart, joints, skin, lungs, blood vessels, liver, kidneys and nervous system. In addition to her battle with Lupus, Jana also suffers from lymphedema, a condition marked by localized fluid retention and tissue swelling. Jana’s poor health has kept her from her work as a phlebotomist, a job she says she loves. Jana is turning 50 years old in April of this year and she says now is the best time to get her health back on track, “I’m almost 50 – everything is falling apart – from my mental state to my physical well-being. I can’t think of a better time to get help with these things than at a milestone birthday.” She remarks that her family is the most important reason for her to make this transformation in her life, “This would be such a blessing not only to me, but my family as well. They have seen me go from a vibrant, active person, to one who isn’t able to do so many things because of my weight and health issues…I need help in getting ‘myself’ back.”
Jani Lewis Jani is kind, generous person; who has dedicated most of her life to helping others in need. A Lexington native, Jani began her career in an advertising agency. Unsatisfied with the world of advertising, she moved to a non-profit organization and eventually began working with a local church. Jani says, “Many people didn’t understand when I moved from the corporate world to the non-profit world, and then from the non-profit world to working at a church. Obviously the paychecks decreased with each decision. But the ability to do the work I felt called to do – to serve and help others in a meaningful way – makes up for each dollar lost.” Jani is a 55-year-old with two grandsons, who know her as “Go-Go.” She continues to do foreign mission work, travelling to Haiti to work with orphans and women trapped in prostitution. Jani says winning this contest would be the perfect way to kick start her health transformation, “I need to lose weight and get control of all health-related issues; to be proactive in any age-related hormonal issues that might be lurking around the corner — it’s time for big changes and this could be the key to getting me moving in the right direction.”
La Kendra Horton After several years of living with obesity, La Kendra and her family recently experienced an alarming wake-up call. After her husband suffered a heart attack, La Kendra says, “The heart attack made me realize today is the day. We have to get healthier for our children. They need us both.” La Kendra says she wants to be here for her family as long as she can, “I am ready to lose this weight and start feeling better about myself and my life. I have three beautiful children and a husband who need me. I want to be here as long as I can for them.” La Kendra hopes that winning the Abundant Transformation will give her the help she needs to begin a new chapter in her life, “I want these services because I know I need help. I cannot do this alone — I know that with the right support I can get over the hump. This opportunity will help me to learn a better lifestyle. It will teach me to make better choices and how to exercise properly. The support is the greatest asset and I know it is definitely what I need. I am asking you to choose me and help me take my life back.”
Rebecca Workman Rebecca is a 26-year-old wife and proud mother of two wonderful kids. In addition to caring for her very young children, she is also a foster parent to rescued pets. Rebecca is very hard working; despite her many family responsibilities at home. She is also currently enrolled as a pre-nursing student at an online college. Rebecca says, “I feel now is the best time for treatment because I have so much that depends on me to be healthy. Now is the best time to take care of myself.” Ever since her daughter was born, Rebecca has noticed that she just hasn’t felt like herself, “My energy level is my main problem, I am tired most of the time. I can deal with my other symptoms, my achy joints, extra facial hair, poor sleep, anxiety and depression. It is my energy level that truly bothers me – and causes my family to suffer. I have been to several doctors, but feel like I am wasting time by just treating symptoms . . . perhaps Abundant Living Medical could help me identify the cause of my symptoms.” Rebecca hopes this transformation can revolutionize her life, “My hope is that this transformation will reach every corner of my life, more energy with my family, a clearer mind for my classes and better confidence in my relationships.”
Sherrie Hackworth Sherrie has been through a lot in the past few years. After her husband died, she fell into a deep depression. Reflecting on this painful chapter in her life, Sherrie remarks, “I was depressed over the loss of my husband; I felt disconnected from life. I was sad and tired all the time.” Sherrie began turning to food as a way of coping. She became increasingly anti-social and her self-esteem and confidence plummeted. Eventually, she completely gave up on her physical appearance, she says, “I didn’t wear make-up anymore, my hair didn’t get fixed most of the time, and I wore jeans and t-shirts. I just didn’t care.” To add to her mounting stress, she also lost her home. Today, Sherrie weighs the most she ever has, with a BMI of 38.1. Her current condition puts her at a much higher risk for issues like heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer. Sherrie recalls the moment she first saw the television advertisement for the $100,000 Abundant Transformation Giveaway, “Something inside just pulled at me and I said to myself, “This is my sign — I need to enter.” There would be no more excuses for me, no more putting off things that I could do now. So I immediately started working on this essay with a new mind that was set and determined to be a winner, to succeed no matter what.” Sherrie’s daughters have encouraged her to start dating again and she hopes that this transformation will give her the confidence to find love again.
Tamma Adkins Like so many devoted wives and mothers, Tamma spent so much of her life taking care of others that she forgot to take care of herself! Tamma has worked as an LPN for 26 years. During that time, she and her husband raised two daughters to adulthood and now she cares for her 2 grandchildren when her daughters are away at work. Tamma notes that she first struggled with weight issues when her daughters were in school, but managed to keep it under control, “Working full time and having 2 girls active in many school activities made it hard to exercise; but fortunately there was a walking track around their softball field and I started to walk, every practice, before games, before & after work. In about 2 months I was below 130lbs. I didn’t have any more weight issues until I hit my 40’s.” This all changed about three years ago, when Tamma began hemorrhaging nonstop, leading to various debilitating health issues. After having an endometrial eblastion, Tamma says her symptoms have improved, but her weight has ballooned to 198 lbs. Tamma says, “I want to win this contest more than anyone, I’m tired of being tired, overweight, no energy, no smile — I hope you consider me, no one would be more appreciative of all the prizes.”
Tammy Miller Tammy has had to battle through many struggles over the past several years. Following the death of her mother in 2006, Tammy sunk into a deep depression. During this time she gained 45 pounds. Tammy says that winning this transformation would help her get her life back on track, “I need these medical and physical services performed now because I am at a crossroads in my life. I desperately want a change; a jumpstart on a positive future.” Following the birth of her last son, Tammy had a hysterectomy, which has led to hormone issues. Tammy is a mother to two loving children. She says that winning this giveaway would help her become a better parent, “I believe I will be a better parent, the most important ‘job’ in the world to me. With assistance in working out and nutrition, I believe I can keep up better with my children now and in the years to come.” Tammy especially wants to win this contest for her 15-year-old daughter, who initially nominated her mother for the contest, “My 15-year-old daughter has prayed and prayed for me to win this contest — If only I were ever blessed to win a contest like this, I would take nothing for granted! I know it would be a blessing from God!”
GIVING THE GIFT OF LIFE
by Kristin Espeland Gourlay
In the time it takes you to read this article, another name will have been added to the nation’s waiting list for an organ transplant. The names on that list, already more than 112,000 long and growing by about one name every 11 minutes, belong to people of every age, every race, and every state who need a heart, liver, or other vital organ. And by the end of the day, about 20 of them will have died waiting for an organ.* More than 750 Kentuckians are currently waiting for a life-saving organ transplant. But there is good news, too—every day an average of 75 people across the nation receive an organ transplant, commuting a death sentence into years, often decades of full, healthy lives. That’s where the focus of this month’s Community Spotlight, Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates or KODA, comes in. And, as KODA staff would say, it’s where you come in, too. About KODA and the Kentucky Organ Donor Registry KODA, based in Lexington, is a statewide educational and procurement network for organ and tissue donation and transplantation. They work with more than 100 hospitals and serve a population of millions throughout Kentucky, parts of southern Indiana and western West Virginia. Crucial to donation and transplantation is the Kentucky Organ Donor Registry, a secure, confidential database of people who have made the decision to donate their organs. And KODA staff work tirelessly to make sure people are aware of it and encourage people to join it. Anyone can join. It’s simply a matter of visiting donatelifeky.org and filling in about 12 fields of information – your name, address, driver’s license number, age. It takes less than a minute, but the gift you’ve signed up to give could last someone a lifetime. Registering ensures your wish to save someone’s
life in the event of your death will be carried out, in compliance with Kentucky’s “First Person Consent Law.” Signing the back of your driver’s license or having the little round “Donor” sticker on the front isn’t quite the same. While it could help let medical professionals and your family know your wishes in a crisis, you might not have it with you. Also, it’s now a requirement by the Circuit Court Clerk’s Trust for Life that you be asked if you want to join the registry when you renew your driver’s license. Linking Precious Gifts with Patients in Need KODA is the vital link between organ donors and recipients, ensuring a potential donor’s organs are viable and recovered in time to save the life of someone in need—if there’s a match. Charlotte Wong, KODA’s public education and events coordinator, explains the process. “Every hospital has policies and procedures in place regarding organ donation. When a patient progresses to the declaration of brain death, an organ procurement organization must be called, so that the option of organ donation can be offered to the family,” says Wong, highlighting a fact most people aren’t aware of and probably don’t want to think about. Wong says an individual’s decision to put his or her name on the donor registry now “is one less decision your family will have to make at that terrible time. Instead, they will be honoring your wishes.” She says her mission is to get people to talk about organ donation now, before a tragedy.
* As of January 8, 2012. Data from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, a federally established nonprofit that helps ensure the efficient and equitable allocation of donor organs. The program also supports efforts to increase the supply of donor organs made available for transplantation. The OPTN, established by the U.S. Congress, operates under contract with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
“After the second confirmation” of brain death, says Wong, “then [KODA] would become involved.” KODA answers any questions the family may have, checks to see if the patient is on the donor registry and coordinates the process if the patient is to be-
come a donor. Characteristics of the donor, such as blood type, size, weight, and other criteria are entered into a computer system, which is overseen by the United Network of Organ Sharing (UNOS), to match the organs medically suitable for transplant with a patient in need. Then, transplant surgeons recover the donor’s organs and transplant them into the waiting patient. One donor can save eight lives with vital organs and help nearly 50 more with donations of other kinds of tissue, bone, and skin. It might be surprising that KODA is an independent nonprofit and does no fundraising. All of its costs are reimbursed by a recipient’s health insurance, or Medicaid or Medicare. The organization is part of the United Network of Organ Sharing, a government-chartered, nationwide network overseen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Its work and everything about transplants and donations are covered by stringent federal laws as well as sophisticated medical, ethical, and scientific protocols. KODA has been around since 1987, when it combined existing organ procurement programs at the Universities of Kentucky and Louisville. Getting the Word Out—and Dispelling Myths—About Organ Donation KODA staff also educate the public about organ donation and the importance of joining the registry.
Brain death, Wong clarifies, isn’t about “pulling the plug.” It is death. It means the brain has been starved of blood and oxygen and won’t recover. When first brought to the hospital, anyone with a severe brain injury is placed on a ventilator and doctors do everything possible to save his or her life. But if that injury leads to brain death, organ donation becomes an option. Brain death has to be confirmed by two neurologists. It’s not [like what you see on a] one hour TV show,” says Wong. Sometimes, brain death cannot be confirmed for several days, as all parts of the brain must have ceased working in order for brain death to be declared.
“Invite us to come and speak, help us share that educational opportunity,” says Charlotte Wong, KODA’s public education and event coordinator. “I speak in high school classes, college classes, civic organizations, to congregations of all faiths, quilters, book clubs, anyone I can; about organ donation,” Wong says. There’s no charge for her services, although Wong says she will gladly accept a speaker’s honorarium to help cover the cost of things like printed materials and public events. She travels all over the state, encouraging people to document their wishes to be organ donors as well as battling misconceptions about organ donation. “People are afraid that if they choose organ donation they can’t have an open casket funeral,” says Wong. “But that’s not true. The removal of organs is similar to other surgeries, where the incisions are small,” she says, and unnoticeable.
Seven-foot granite Donor Memorial on the grounds of the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort, honoring organ, eye, and tissue donors
Wong says she encounters people who believe their religion prohibits organ donation, but she tells them that most faiths approve. She finds people who worry that, if they’re registered organ donors, doctors won’t try to save their lives. That’s not true either, she reassures them.
Liver recipient Amelia Brown with donor mom Linda Clark in front o f the Donor Memorial Quilt
National Donor Day as well as Valentine’s Day
Take part in this most noble cause and help save the lives of many people. This February 14th, with the celebration of love, remember to give the best gift – saving the lives of others. National Donor Day was started by the US Department of Health and Human Services in 1998. Valentine’s Day has been designated as National Donor Day to increase the awareness of the lives that can be saved by donating organs and tissues. One donor can save up to 58 lives at the same time through organ, cornea, bone and tissue transplantation.
visit donatelifeky.com to register
Who’s Who Some think the rich and famous get transplants sooner by shirking the rules. None of that is true, either. According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, which maintains the national transplant waiting list, “the length of time it takes to receive a transplant is governed by many factors, including blood type, length of time on the waiting list, severity of illness and other medical criteria.” Wealth and status don’t figure into it. Dignity for Donor Families Wong says, “KODA’s commitment is two-fold: our mission is to save and preserve life through transplantation and maintain the ultimate respect and dignity for our donors and donor families who make that possible.” KODA expresses that respect throughout the year. An annual donor recognition ceremony takes place every spring and honors and recognizes those who gave the “Gift of Life.” It’s an occasion for donors’ families to share memories and find support. Families can visit the Donor Memorial, a seven-foot granite memorial on the grounds of the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort, honoring organ, eye, and tissue donors.
There’s Donor Sabbath weekend, held every November, when congregations and faith leaders of all types are called on to recognize organ donors and their families with prayer and to raise awareness of the importance of joining the donor registry. KODA has coordinated the creation of seven donor memorial quilts. Each quilt contains 35 squares that a donor’s family makes in his or her honor. Many are needlepointed, hand embroidered, or include material from a favorite item of clothing. KODA loans the quilts for display in hospitals, at church registry drives, and the memorials of donors. Through its Aftercare program, KODA works with families at the time of organ donation and then continues to follow up with them through correspondence, a newsletter, and an Aftercare coordinator who’s available to help with special requests. The names of donors and recipients are always confidential, but KODA lets donors’ families know how many lives their family member helped save. TOPS is proud to feature the stories of some of the families whose lives have been touched by organ donation in the following pages.
How to give the gift of life Learn more about donating organs, blood, tissue, and marrow. Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates: kyorgandonor.org Learn more about organ donation in Kentucky. Kentucky Donor Registry: donatelifeky.org Visit this secure web site where you can register to be an organ donor. Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ Trust for Life: trustforlife.org Visit this secure web site where you can register to be an organ donor and read inspiring gift of life stories U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Division of Transplantation: organdonor.gov Find more information about organ and tissue donation and transplantation. Kentucky Blood Center: kybloodcenter.org Based in Lexington, KBC is the largest U.S. Food and Drug Administration licensed blood bank in Kentucky. Be The Match, National Marrow Donation Program: marrow.org Join the registry to be a bone marrow donor or to donate umbilical cord blood. 10,000 people currently need a marrow transplant, but must find a genetic match. Cord blood can be used in patients with lifethreatening diseases like leukemia.
EVERY LIFE, A GIFT
Following are the stories of Kentuckians who have donated or received the gift of life. Some left us tragically too soon. But because of their and their families’ generosity, many more were given a second chance at life.
by Kristin Espeland Gourlay
Riley Speck AGE 7, Heart Transplant Recipient
Brandi Speck, 30, welcomed son Riley right on time, at eight pounds, seven ounces. He was a healthy, energetic baby boy. But at his 15-month check-up, a nurse heard something unusual while listening to his heart. She called in the doctor to listen, who called in three more doctors. A mother’s nightmare began to unfold. “Deep down,” recalls Speck, “I was really scared.” Riley had something called “restrictive cardiomyopathy,” which meant his heart muscle wasn’t relaxing properly and could burst at any moment. Doctors were shocked that Riley wasn’t sicker. A heart transplant, they said, was his only chance at survival. So Riley’s name went on the waiting list for a heart. A miraculous nine days later, the Specks got the call that there was a heart for Riley. They knew nothing about the donor, except that she was an 18-month-old girl. They drove to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital for the surgery. “It was the longest drive ever,” says Speck. “I kept wishing it was all a dream and that he would get better any second.”
Brandi & Riley Speck
By the next day, Riley was recovering. And today, you’d never know what he went through, looking at his smiling first grade photo. He does Taekwondo and gymnastics. And, according to his mom, he loves life and everybody in it. He may have a lifetime of doctors’ visits ahead of him, including frequent blood tests and biopsies to ensure the transplanted heart is healthy. But Speck
Who’s Who says Riley faces it as bravely as he does the knowledge of where his heart comes from.
tion present from birth but never apparent. The damage was so extensive there was nothing doctors could do.
Once, Speck took Riley to a support group meeting for organ donors and recipients, expecting him only to listen and wait. But after each participant had shared why they were attending, Speck says Riley asked, “Is it my turn yet?” And then, like a support group pro, he addressed the crowd. “My name is Riley and when I was born my heart didn’t work. So a little girl who died gave me hers.”
Henry knew right away what T’neil would have wanted. “I knew she would be an organ donor,” she says. “Nobody expects to be told your daughter is now brain dead,” Henry says. “But, in that moment, what are you going to do with that information? I think, for us, being able to donate was just one more way for us to pay tribute to T’neil.”
T’neil Martin, 1992-2010, Donor
On the one-year anniversary of T’neil’s death, Henry met the recipient of her daughter’s heart. She packed a stethoscope. “And to hear it, just boom-boom in her chest…” recalls Henry. “I still don’t have words to describe that meeting. It was amazing, to see her and to have known her story.” A virus had attacked the recipient’s own heart, but the transplant saved her life. Henry has since met both of the recipients of T’neil’s kidneys. A branch of the family met the recipient of her lungs in St. Louis. She says she appreciates how thankful they are, but she didn’t do it for the thanks. “When you know that you have done the right thing, it’s like, OK, we did the right thing, and that’s it. Live your life,” Henry says. “I appreciate that they’re sorry that we had to lose our child so they continued to live, but that’s just part of it. I accept that that’s part of it. I don’t want them to have that guilt or that grief. You have that second chance. There’s no room for grief.” The Campbells, A Family of Donors and One Lucky Recipient
T’neil Martin was almost a senior in high school when she wrote her last Facebook post. “I might not have everything I want and everything may not go my way,” she posted in July, 2010, “but at least I’m happy & that’s gotta count for something :).”
One recent Sunday afternoon, the Campbells, a funny, lively bunch from Lexington, were swapping stories and exchanging bits of knowledge and trivia. How many units in one blood donation? How often can you “pherese,” or give blood plasma or platelets? Who’s the best phlebotomist? But this wasn’t a dinner party for doctors. It was shop talk for the Campbells, who donate blood more often than most people change their sheets.
That was a typical sentiment from T’neil, 17, a caring, sweet teenager, recalls mother Denisha Henry. “She was into poetry and spoken word. She was very tenderhearted. She was the one that made all the friends.” After graduation, T’neil planned to join the Navy. “I was OK with it because she had a plan,” says Henry. “She wanted to pay for college, see the world, then get married and have a bunch of kids I could babysit.” But it wasn’t to be. T’neil was at home with her twin sister, D’neil, when she started to complain of a headache. It was so severe that family rushed her to the hospital. By the time Henry arrived from work, the prognosis was grim. T’neil had suffered a brain hemorrhage because of an arterial vascular malformation, or AVM, a condi-
Kenneth, Christi, DJ & Kaye Campbell, photo by Katie Decker
Who’s Who “I’m up to 7 seven gallons,” says Kenneth. “DJ, you’re up to 11?” DJ, Kenneth’s brother, nods. “And that’s just at the KBC (Kentucky Blood Center).”
Jeff Maynard, 1962-2010, Donor Haley, Jeff & Karley Maynard
But they’re not bragging. “I don’t want you to be overly impressed,” says DJ. “There are people around here who’ve given a whole lot more than my 11 gallons.” Still, the Campbells must come pretty close to breaking some kind of record at the Kentucky Blood Center, where they were gathered to support Christi, 35, who had an appointment to donate platelets. Her mother, Kaye (who works with technology in grade schools) came along and seemed right at home. There, too were sons Kenneth, 32, an Iraq veteran and DJ, 37, who works in sales. Kenneth’s girlfriend Katie came, too. And each one of them knows the phlebotomists by name, as well as all the services the Center has to offer donors while they’re waiting (Wi-fi, DVDs). Their passion for giving blood has made it a kind of family past time. Kaye says her husband, Dwight, set the example. “The kids learned how to play chess at his left or his right hand,” keeping him company while he was donating blood. Things may have changed since then (you can’t really hang out in the blood donation area any more like you could when the Campbell kids were little). But the legacy of giving is alive and well in this family. It’s a testament to their father, who passed away from an aneurysm 16 years ago (and whose organs the family donated). “It’s definitely something we do because of him and in honor of him,” says Christi. DJ remembers the first time he gave blood. “I was underage, and I had my buddy forge [the consent form].” He says that, because of how his dad felt about giving blood, “when I went home, I knew there’d be no consequences.” But DJ didn’t know that one day he would benefit from the very same act of kindness from others. “On Christmas day, 2010, at 2 am in the morning,” says DJ, “I was at home, putting off wrapping gifts, when I felt the worst pain in my life in my chest.” He drove himself to the hospital, where doctors discovered that DJ’s aorta—the largest artery in the body—had widened from two to six centimeters. His heart was hours from bursting. DJ had emergency open-heart surgery, and needed a lot of blood. “Whatever it is,” jokes DJ, “I’m still in the positive. I’m not a taker, I’m a giver,” he says, referring to the amount of blood he’s donated versus the amount he needed in surgery. His siblings roll their eyes. But joking aside, DJ says he’s frustrated he can no longer give blood (because of his post-surgery medications). “There are so many problems in the world I can’t touch. [But] one of the issues is people are always going to need blood.” Sister Christi adds, “It’s the one thing they can’t manufacture.”
Jeff Maynard was 48 when he went on a fishing trip in a remote part of Canada. It was a trip he’d taken before with friends in the building industry, the kind you’d expect a guy like him to relish. “If you didn’t know him and you just saw him walking across the street, you’d think he was a really tough guy,” says daughter Haley, 24. “He had a beard and was really muscular. But deep down he was a softie at heart.” Her dad was a builder, owner of his own business, Jeff Maynard Builders. And he put his industry skills to work for the four children he loved. “We had the biggest play set you’ve ever seen,” Haley remembers. “He was also a really good cook. His signature was his dinner rolls. He loved to cook and entertain. He loved to have friends and family over all the time.” So it was with friends in a small fishing community that Maynard suffered a stroke. A helicopter rushed him to the nearest hospital, and then on to a bigger one, where doctors fought to save him. But it was too late. Haley and her family rushed to Canada to say goodbye to their dad. And in that tragic moment, there was no question about whether to donate his organs. “I started doing community service with KODA (Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates) in high school,” says Haley. “So our family was really familiar with KODA and organ donation. It wasn’t really a conversation. Everyone just already knew.” She says it was a relief that her dad was able to give his corneas, heart, a kidney, and his liver. “I just really feel like it’s the best decision you can make, not only because it saves other people, but it makes me feel better, because you know that person still lives on in other people and he’s still doing good for other people,” she says.
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Exciting and new – or tested and true. These are your love stories, submitted online. Enjoy! by Amanda Harper Photography by Shaun Ring Photography Location Courtesy of the Gratz Park Inn
David & Julia
A love that belongs on the silver screen
David and Julia met at EKU and became best friends. They’re self-described goofballs who love being silly together. “When my wife and I are in the same room, you know laughter will be coming your way,” David said. He said that their love is more than quirkiness and fun, though. “Love is something that is very serious and heartfelt. That is what my wife and I have,” David explained. “It’s not quite that same old sappy love story that is always portrayed in movies, but it is a true selfless caring for each other.” Their first date was truly magical. The couple flew a small plane over Cincinnati to Historic Lunken Airport. One of their friends dressed as a chauffeur and drove them to a surprise picnic at Ault Park, full of lush gardens and beautiful architecture that set a totally romantic scene. They flew back home as the sun set.
Topping a night like that would be tricky, David knew. David entered a contest to win an engagement ring from Rivard’s Fine Jewelers. When he won, he filmed a commercial in which he proposed to Julia. He took Julia out to the Movie Tavern. Julia was under the impression that she would just be seeing the finale of “The Bachelorette”, but she got so much more! David’s commercial aired on the big screen, and he surprised Julia with the ring. To make it even more magical, the local news was there to film the entire event and it became the night’s Top News Story, replaying their surprise proposal for everyone to see. “How many ‘Chick Flicks’ and love stories out there are actually true,” David asked. In the case of this couple, at least one!
Who’s Who Thomas and Teresa met on a warm October day in 2007. They were watching UK play Florida at Waterfront Restaurant and Lounge on the Kentucky River. They discovered that they had a lot in common, both having been divorced with adult children; they both loved to travel, they both loved Harley Davidson motorcycles and they both loved the ocean. They’ve been together since that day.
Thomas & Theresa
A love that has tested the waters and come out sailing
The couple’s shared love of the ocean led to many wonderful dates on the beach and cruises. In 2009, Thomas gave Teresa a beautiful ring and popped the BIG question. “Being older and engaged, we didn’t rush into marriage and planned a beach wedding for 9-10-11, a magical date,” Teresa explained. But their plans were interrupted. In August 2010, Teresa was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time in five years. For this bout of breast cancer, Teresa would have to undergo a double mastectomy followed by months of chemotherapy and 3 more surgeries. For Teresa, it felt unfair and unreal. “All I could think of is who would want me, scarred and bald?” Thomas, that’s who. He was there for her every day and night, helping her in and out of bed when she didn’t have the strength to move. He cooked, he cleaned and he helped take care of her. When her long beautiful hair began to fall out, Thomas took her to pick out wigs. He assured her--hair or not--she was still his “pretty princess”. For the past year, Thomas has stuck by “through sickness and in health.” What’s ahead for this lucky pair? “We are going to plan to get married this year, when we can get our family together at the beach. For now, we are just trying to regroup and recoup and thank God we have each other,” Theresa said.
Brian & Judy
Through their grief, this couple found new love
Brian likes to tell people, “Nobody goes to grief support groups to meet women.” But in looking back, that’s sort of what happened to him. Of course that was the furthest thing from his mind after his lovely wife Linda struggled with kidney cancer for two years and ultimately lost the battle. One of the Hospice counselors told Brian about a new group just starting up for young surviving spouses and encouraged him to attend. After her divorce, Judy had been single for 8 years. She had finally found love again when she met Jimmy in 2006. A year and half later, she found him dead of a massive heart attack. She was completely devastated. Judy and Brian were not alone in their experiences. The new group had ten members, all with similar stories. “The grief in the room was palpable” says Brian, “absolutely raw.” The counselor told them that as strange as it sounded, they would eventually look forward to these weekly meetings. Judy says, “That proved to be very true. The people in that group
understood. You could cry, express your anger, whatever you were feeling, and it was OK.” Most everyone in the group had children waiting at home for them after the meetings, but Brian and Judy’s children were grown. They had empty houses to return to. One night after the meeting, Brian asked Judy if she’d like to get a cup of coffee. Coffee turned into dinners where they spent hours sharing their stories. In getting to know each other better, the two learned that they shared a common interest in photography and soon they began going on photo shoots whenever they had free time. The pair wed in 2008 and a year later they started JB Myers Photography shooting weddings, portraits and events. Judy explains, “The support group helped us realize that life does go on, even sometimes, when you don’t want it to. Neither of us ever imagined ourselves happy again, let alone re-married! We are truly grateful every day.”
Bobby & Marian
A little family matchmaking brought this couple together
Bobby asked Marian out for the first time in the summer of 1965. “I politely declined several times,” Marian explained. “It was not until the Christmas holiday season that my grandmother insisted I accept such a wonderful young man’s invitation. I did.” They walked around downtown Lexington, bought a doll for Marian’s sister and went to Hillenmeyer’s to see their live nativity, unknowingly starting a 35-year tradition. Bobby proposed on Christmas Eve after two years of dating. Bobby’s father decided that Marian needed a place to live while Bobby was attending mortuary school, so he built her a home behind his own. On a Thanksgiving two years later, Bobby and Marian were married. The couple raised a daughter together and Marian cared for their aging parents through the ends of their lives. Married
now for 44 years, Bobby and Marian are still living in the house that Bobby’s father built. Marian takes care of the home while Bobby is away working with W. R. Milward Funeral Directors. She occasionally helps him with his work, joining him on long road trips across the country. They love to go antiquing together. They dine out often, enjoying their nights out together to catch up. They always have a date night each week. “Above all, I remember to say ‘I love you’ every day, several times a day,” Marian explained. “Those are the magic words.” “Our life has been pretty wonderful, but not without a few bumps along the way,” Marian explained. “Life just happens, you don’t always plan on it. However, you just hold each other and keep on loving each other.” Bobby says Marian is his “best buddy and friend.” He said, “I’m a very lucky man.”
What To Do
THE MELTING POT Fondue restaurantâ€™s food, style and intimacy provides a great backdrop for couples by Blake Hannon
What To Do
oing out for a nice dinner for Valentine’s Day is almost standard practice. But just like any other V-Day staple, whether it’s candy, flowers or stuffed animals, what becomes standard can also become predictable and uninspired year after year.
While I’m usually flying solo, for this particular meal, I was joined by my wife (looking particularly stunning in a green dress that yours truly got her for Christmas) to see what a couple’s experience was like at this dipping destination.
black walnut vinaigrette, we moved on to the main course. We settled on the featured feast with pieces of seasoned Angus sirloin, buffalo chicken, Memphis-style BBQ pork tenderloin, Old Bay shrimp and wild mushroom sacchetti and got to choose from one of four fondue cooking styles. Each had its own flavorful appeal, but my wife went with the Mojo with its Caribbean-style citrus and garlic flavors. Good choice. On top of that, we were given a barrage of sauces to accompany our protein, everything from curry and teriyaki to sweet and sour and Gorgonzola cream to add additional layers of flavor. And if you’re not sure how long to cook your raw meat or which sauce goes best with what, your server has no problem guiding you.
Of course, Lexington is one of several cities with its own version of The Melting Pot. The restaurant was started in Florida in 1975 and has since expanded to well over 100 locations.
That’s one of the things fondue has over your typical dinner: The food itself becomes a conversation piece. My wife and I are telling each other our favorite dippers, proteins and sauces – basically gushing over everything we put in our mouths.
Upon entry, the dark grey walls, soft lighting and jazz playing over the speakers set an inviting tone, not to mention a huge glass enclosure of wine bottles any grape ape would want to raid. The restaurant is laid out with a couple of main dining rooms and a bar area but there were a few more sequestered nooks with their own separate booths depending on the size of your party.
And here’s the other thing. While my wife and I just recently celebrated a two-year anniversary (which I think still makes us newlyweds) and are both affectionate people, we were definitely more so than usual. Everything from the interactive nature of the meal to the two-person booths with high walls separating you from other diners makes everything feel more intimate. There could have been a packed house with a twohour wait and the only person I would have noticed was my wife sitting next to me – at least until our attentive server came back to check on us.
So, how do you make a night out for dinner with your significant other a bit more spontaneous and special? Solution: Grab your partner and fondue it at The Melting Pot.
The booths themselves were slightly unconventional. Instead of sitting across from one another, we were given a halfcrescent-shaped booth where we sat side-by-side adjacent to the fondue pot where all the magic happens. Aside from a fine list of wine, bottled beer and impressive cocktails, the main attraction is the restaurant’s Big Night Out, a four-course meal that includes salads along with cheese, entrée and chocolate dessert fondues. For anyone with little to no experience at a fondue restaurant, the servers at The Melting Pot are extremely knowledgeable, instructional and conversational, getting you acquainted with the process and providing plenty of personality while they do it. We started with a Boston Lager Cheddar Cheese Fondue with hints of bacon and onion and a kick of Tabasco. This is not my palette making an educated guess. Our server warmed up the fondue pot and mixed the ingredients right in front of us. This delicious cheesy goodness was given a trio of dippers, with two types of bread, Granny Smith apples and fresh veggies. Once we got a couple of nice salads out of the way that featured candied pecans, Gorgonzola cheese and raspberry
To finish off the meal, the indulgent chocolate fondue put us both on cloud nine. It wouldn’t be an insult to The Melting Pot to say that dessert tends to be the main event. We went a more classic route with a Yin & Yang with milk and white chocolate poured out to resemble its namesake served with dippers that included strawberries, bananas, Rice Krispies Treats, marshmallows dusted with Oreo and graham cracker crumbs, brownie pieces, red velvet pound cake and a slice of cheesecake. There also are more elaborate dessert fondues that feature cookies ‘n cream, bananas foster and chocolate s’mores. I’m pretty sure my wife and I made an unspoken agreement to come back and try them all, cavities and waistlines be damned. All I know is even though I was technically “on the job,” the meal I had at The Melting Pot with my wife felt like something special. The general manager said The Melting Pot’s mission is to provide the perfect night out. Take it from me, it could be February or the Fourth of July, but a meal with someone special at this place can make any day feel like Valentine’s Day.
859.254.6358 | 152 West Tiverton Way | themeltingpot.com
FASHION WATCH DATING STYLE
by Katherine Van Hook Fashionista
It is thought that Valentine’s Day became the celebration of lover’s during the Middle ages, and was celebrated in the spring because that is when birds pick their mates. In this millennium, I imagine cupid would look more like Justin Beiber, and choose Dolce & Gabbana over a Grecian toga and wings. Fashion has certainly taken a few corners since the Middle Ages, and as we approach Valentine’s Day, our focus has moved from raw and real to sweet and surreal. My mission on this frosty day - to find appropriate Valentine’s Day attire according to age, size, level of relationship and destination. That is a lot of data to factor, so I consult Isobel Chewning of Cotton Patch in the Lansdowne Shoppes for advice on what today’s women are wearing on their dates. Isobel is a long time veteran of such questions and gives logical, insightful answers to these age old questions. Her boutique is eclectic, from lace to jeans. Cotton Patch has earned its long-term status among the top boutiques of Central Kentucky and can make women of any age look great for her date. Embracing memories of the girl I once was, I begin my search for the teen fashionista. Amanda and her guy are young and vivacious. They are likely to choose the vigor of “Triangle Park” ice rink for their first date. Isobel suggests dressing cute and playful. Skinny jeans, mink ear muffs, and a cashmere pashmina scarf are sure to turn heads. Of course, the look is not complete without a pair of Echo texting gloves, as her BFF, Christina, is kept in the know at any moment. Up the street, Nikki is one of the University of Kentucky’s greatest assets. Twenty-one and in love, she is dressing for a special night with the guy she’s been dating for 6 months. Since they know each other well, a short cap sleeve dress that opens in the back to reveal the top of her shoulders is perfect for their night on the town. Isobel sug-
gests accessorizing with a coordinating set of chandelier earrings and necklace and a sexy pair of pumps. Across town, in an eclectic artsy side bar is Sally, in her mid forties, meeting a man she’s been out with only once before. She wants to be sexy, but is careful of looking too young, so she is encouraged to put on a comfortable and colorful Michael Stars top, giving her comfort and coverage, with a fit that shows she is in tune with today’s fashion trends. Her jeans are a mature straight-leg cut, making the most of her soft, feminine curves. She can finish the look with a flirty clutch and heeled leather boots. Samantha is meeting her possible Mr. Right for the first time on a blind date set up by her colleague. Isobel advises her to dress conservatively, admitting that many women want to demand respect on their first date. A black pencil poly spandex skirt that hits at the knee paired with a colorful sheer button front blouse over a form fitting camisole makes a statement that she is strong and sophisticated, yet feminine. For the Preppy Chic mom, wearing something comfortable and versatile is the main objective. She needs to be able to take a wrinkle free dress from a day at the office, change up the accessories and be the envy of all her friends on the group dinner later that night. Accessories can make all the difference, so while a set of pearl stud earrings work for a client meeting, replacing them with a fun and colorful pair of stones and stackable bangles is a sure way to update the look. As for me, your fashionista, I am hoping my guy reads this in time to shove aside any “surprise plans” he may have. My Valentine’s Day would be perfect in the Eva Varro, stunning and sophisticated, matte jersey Chanel print dress in red and black that I discovered at Cotton Patch. Add a sexy up-do, and all the French food my heart desires and he is in good graces for the future. I wish you all the most romantic Valentine’s Day with your special someone. And when questions arise, Cotton Patch is one great place to find the answers.
What To Do
DATING: OLD SCHOOL — NEW SCHOOL by Sue Ann Truitt Etiquette Consultant
As the February cupid shoots his red arrow, hearts become more romantically inclined. Thoughts emerge of those one might like to see again, someone to ask to dinner, or to agree to go on that blind date your friend has wanted to arrange. Dating as we know today has changed so dramatically in the last 100 years. To think of a gentleman and a lady meeting during that era led to Holt’s Encyclopedia of Etiquette,1923. The chapter “Bachelor Hospitalities” gave insight into the social life of a single person. To meet a young lady, a man might give a Bachelor’s Tea or Dinner. Having ladies among his guests, he would select a married woman to be the chaperone of the occasion. He must not invite this woman without her husband. When this lady stood at the end of the dinner, all of the lady guests were to follow her out of the room leaving the gentlemen behind. At a Tea Party, the lady guests would watch the chaperone. When she would leave the party, all the other single ladies would leave at the same time. Dating etiquette and social occasions have certainly come a long way in the last 100 years. In those occasions of today, the rules have greatly relaxed. Nevertheless, certain dating etiquette is important to help build a more successful experience. Dating is about two people coming together to get to know one another. Communication leads to compatibility which could eventually form a close bond or relationship. During this process, there are important guidelines to remember:
• Never try to impress your date by bragging or being extravagant. • In early stages, avoid possible controversial subjects such as religion or politics. • Never argue or act rudely to anyone during the date. • Be a good listener as well as a conversationalist. Do not talk about yourself constantly. • On a planned date, do not dress in a shabby or extravagant manner. The way you dress speaks volumes about you as a person. • Never lie to your date. The truth will eventually come out. • Be considerate and a polite, responsible person whether your date is the one of your dreams or someone with whom you have little in common. These dating guidelines are actually social “niceties” and should be followed whether you are having lunch with a friend or having dinner with your significant other. Those who can count the most number of friends are those who remember and practice the adage that “Good Manners never go out of Style”.
• Dating should be fun and is the responsibility of both parties to see that it is. • The time spent together should be enjoyable. • Give your date as much attention as possible. Make the other person feel important. • Be courteous and complimentary. • Always be on time for the date. If delayed, contact the person immediately with an explanation.
What To Do
Whether you’re taking your ﬁrst dip in the dating pool, have been together through thick and thin, or taking some time off to focus on You, there’s always room to freshen up your ‘Date’. TOPS has lots of fun ideas on how to spend time with your loved one, best friend, or even by yourself. by Amanda Harper
Enjoy a Couples Massage
Take Cooking Classes
Sample Local Flavor at a Winery
Learning to create fabulous cuisine is a wonderful way to bond with your sweetheart. Of course, you have a guaranteed next date: putting what you learned into practice and cooking a meal at home!
Central Kentucky’s growing wine industry offers a bevy of wonderful date ideas. Sample local wines and learn more about the wine-making process, then buy a bottle and take it home as a souvenir.
Relax side by side as your worries melt away in a soothing environment. The bliss of a massage is magnified when you get to enjoy it with someone you love.
Go Ice Skating Indulge in a Hotel Getaway Package You needn’t get out of town to get away. Many local hotels and bed and breakfast inns offer luxurious packages that make you feel like you’ve gone a thousand miles away.
Hold hands, head across the ice and grab some cocoa when you’re done. This is a great way to send off winter! If either of you can’t skate, sign up for lessons and learn together.
What To Do
Tour the Kentucky Bourbon Trail You can hardly claim to be a Kentuckian until you’ve sampled bourbon from the source. Head out to one of Kentucky’s bourbon distilleries and learn about Kentucky’s famous export together.
Create Pottery Since the movie Ghost came out, pottery has gotten a decidedly romantic wrap. Have fun molding pottery pieces together and learning about this age-old craft.
Heading outdoors with a loved one is a great way to stay fit and stay connected as a couple. Take advantage of a warm afternoon and explore the Kentucky coutryside whether it be biking, hiking or horseback riding.
Take in an Art Gallery
Grab Coffee or Ice Cream Head to the Hills for Skiing While skiing sounds out of reach for Kentuckians, it’s definitely not! There are several ski resorts within a day’s drive of Lexington. Make a cozy weekend of it. Go on, hit the slopes!
Take a Carriage Ride One of the most romantic dates Lexington has to offer is a carriage ride through Downtown. Learn a bit of Lexington’s history or just snuggle with your love as you take in the sights.
Central Kentucky streets are dotted with art galleries that are full of beauty and wonder. Stop in on an opening reception night to meet an artist or tour the gallery hand-in-hand.
Grab a cup, shake or cone and enjoy it in a beautiful location. It’s a simple idea that makes an otherwise dull afternoon or evening an adventure. Bring along a blanket!
Rent a Limousine Get glammed up and spend a night on the town in style. A limousine adds drama and glamour to any date. No idea where to go? Just riding around, sipping champagne is enough fun for anyone!
For Your Valentine
For Your Valentine
For Your Valentine
For Your Valentine
For Your Valentine
For Your Valentine
For Your Valentine
What To Do
Cuddle Up & Enjoy! by Amanda Harper
Casablanca (1943) Starring: Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid and Claude Rains Mood: Dark, Tragic Perfect For: History buffs, classic movie lovers Enjoy this movie with: A mini casino night, plenty of fedoras and room to dance Plot: Former freedom fighter Rick spends his nights in his club in Casablanca. An infamous rebel comes to Rick’s, along with his wife-Rick’s one great love. She left him when the Nazis invaded Paris, but their love carries on. Rick risks everything to make life safe once more for his long-lost amour. The plot is iconic, as are its stars, and Casablanca is a tragic love story for the ages. An Affair to Remember (1957) Starring: Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, Richard Denning and Neva Patterson Mood: Tragic, tear-jerker Perfect for: Hopeful
romantics Enjoy this movie with: A box of tissues and a blanket Plot: A playboy meets his match aboard
an ocean liner and they fall in love--but they’re both involved with other people. The pair agree to meet at the Empire State Building in six months’ time if they end their relationships and start new careers. On the day of their meeting, tragedy strikes. The couple goes forward, believing that love between them will never happen. When the reformed playboy barges into her apartment on Christmas Eve, the truth of the situation is finally revealed in a scene that is equal parts heart-breaking and hopeful. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961) Starring: Audrey Hepburn, George Peppard, Buddy Ebsen and Mickey Rooney Mood: Funny, light-hearted Perfect for: Hip couples Enjoy this movie with: A croissant, a cup of coffee and huge sunglasses Beautiful, vivacious Holly Golightly captivates her new neighbor in this charming, colorful and surprisingly romantic film adaptation of Truman Capote’s novel. Holly’s mysterious past reveals a surprising tenacity and a huge capacity for love in Holly’s heart. This absolutely iconic Hepburn film is funny, intriguing, whimsical, curious and quickwitted, much like the romance that blooms between Holly and her neighbor. Love Story (1970) Starring: Ali MacGraw, Ryan O’Neal and Ray Milland Mood: Sad, tragic, tear-jerker Perfect for: Lost loves
Enjoy this movie with: Someone to cry with “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” A pre-law student attending Harvard and a free-spirited music student at Radcliffe fall in love, in spite of their very different backgrounds. They marry against the wishes of their families, leaving them on their own in the world. Their doomed love story is heartbreaking, and requires a box of tissues to get through. Dirty Dancing (1987) Starring: Jennifer Gray, Patrick Swayze, Jerry Orbach and Kelly Bishop Mood: Coming of age romance Perfect for: Music lovers Enjoy this movie with: Plenty of room to dance Plot: A girl from a well-to-do family falls in love with an older man from the wrong side of the tracks during a summer vacation at a family-friendly resort. Mambo-dancing Johnny and goody two-shoes Baby fall in love, proving that love is more important than money or reputations. The soundtrack is rockin’, the dance moves are spicy and the story is an instant classic. Nobody puts this movie in a corner! When Harry Met Sally (1989) Starring: Meg Ryan, Billy Crystal, Carrie
All movie posters and artwork are copyright of their respective companies and creators.
What To Do Fisher and Bruno Kirby Mood: Witty Perfect for: Friends in love Enjoy this movie with: “What she’s having.” Harry and Sally meet in a long car-trip together. The talkative pair discuss many things, but focus on the belief that men and women can’t ever just be friends. The two meet up again every few years, forming a solid friendship-that is, of course, complicated. When their mutual friends fall in love, Harry and Sally have to examine their own feelings. This wonderful story is peppered with real life love stories from couples around New York, a lovely touch to a witty film. Pretty Woman (1990) Starring: Julia Roberts, Richard Gere, Jason Alexander and Laura San Giacomo Mood: Lighthearted Perfect for: Hopeless romantics, Girls night in Enjoy this movie with: Your best party dress and a meal with too many forks Plot: When top-tier businessman Edward decides to purchase the services of a prostitute with a heart of gold, their two worlds collide in a modern-day Cinderella story. Their intimate moments have far more to do with chemistry than cash. Someone in the firm discovers Vivian’s real occupation, and it causes a rift that seems impossible to mend for emotionally unavailable Edward. Many say that this is the role that made Julia Roberts a household name. Ghost (1990) Starring: Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Whoopi Goldberg and Tony Goldwyn Mood: Tragic, humorous Perfect for: Girls night in
Enjoy this movie with: A pottery wheel Plot: Trapped on earth as a ghost, Sam realizes that his death was no accident. He uses the voice of a psychic medium to communicate the looming danger of the situation to his love, Molly. Funny, sad and romantic, this movie proves that love goes on, even after death. Hunky Swayze, Gorgeous Demi and Hilarious Whoopi make a terrific team in this film. Sleepless in Seattle (1993) Starring: Meg Ryan, Tom Hanks, Bill Pullman and Rosie O-Donnell Mood: Sweet, Funny Perfect for: Girls night in, Longdistance couples Enjoy this movie with: Your best friend Plot: When Sam’s son calls into a late night radio talk show in hopes of finding love for his father, millions of women respond through letters and calls. Sam’s tragic story captures the heart of Annie, who lives across the country. Annie writes a letter to Sam, which is intercepted by his son, who decides that Annie has to be his new mother. Funny and sweet, this movie proves that love knows no distance and that fate will always step in. Titanic (1997) Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Billy Zane and Kathy Bates Mood: Tragic, historic, tear-jerker Perfect for: History buffs Enjoy this movie with: a glass of brandy Plot: Aboard the ill-fated cruise liner, poor Jack saves the life and love of Rich girl Rose. Racing against the ship’s inevitable doom and the looming threat of a future Rose wants no part of, the pair’s powerful connection spurs a fascinating and unforgettable love story. The costumes, sets and story are all absolutely enchanting. Something’s Gotta Give (2003) Starring: Diane Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Amanda Pete and Keanu Reeves
Mood: Funny Perfect for: Older couples Enjoy this movie with: Pancakes Plot: Womanizer Harry is in his 60s, but that doesn’t stop him from wooing girls many years his junior. During a weekend getaway, Harry meets his latest girlfriend’s mother, Erica--and suffers a heart attack. As he heals under Erica’s care, he begins to develop feelings for her. Falling for a woman his own age scares him, sending him on a soul-searching journey that leads to Paris. The Notebook (2004) Starring: Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, Gena Rowlands and James Garner Mood: Sad, hopeful Perfect for: Older couples, couples
facing difficulty Enjoy this movie with: A box of tissues Plot: Star-crossed lovers who can’t seem to make things happen. Meddling families and complicated relationships keep this deeply in-love couple apart. With a love story for the ages written down in the eponymous notebook, this movie seeks to prove that love conquers all--even age. 50 First Dates (2004) Starring: Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Sean Astin and Rob Schneider Mood: Funny Perfect for: A first date Enjoy this movie with: Spam and Reese cups Imagine having to win over the girl of your dreams every single day. That’s the problem freewheeling Henry runs into when he falls for Lucy, who has a rare form of amnesia that causes her to have no short term memory and makes her forget him every night when she falls asleep. This story is unforgettably fun and sweet.
What To Do
SHOW YOUR PET SOME LOVE by Amanda Harper, Pet Aficionado
They’ve been constant companions throughout the year, offering you love and devotion through thick and thin. They’ve been by your side while you were down and out with a cold. They’ve stood by you when it felt like the world was falling apart. They’ve watched all of those movies with you, gone for all those walks and listened to all your worries. So this Valentine’s Day, take a little time to show your pets you appreciate them! For a very special treat, I propose a perfect pet day. While calling it a “date” would be more than a little awkward, the idea is to spend the day with your pet, doing what he loves and having fun together. Since pets have no real concept of human holidays, you could spend a Saturday or Sunday showing your pet that he’s appreciated without intruding on your own Valentine’s Day plans. To prepare, identify three things that would just send your pet over the moon. Maybe he loves taking long runs in the country or enjoys sitting by your side while you browse the web. Maybe he enjoys heading to the pet store or just
loves gnawing on her favorite toy, Mr. Squeakles. Perhaps there’s a person in your life that they just love to see, a place they love to be or a snack that they just go nutty for. Whatever it is that your pet loves, today is the day to indulge (a little) in fun for you both! Set the plan in action. Start your morning by sleeping in. If your pet is an early riser, help encourage him to relax and unwind. Take a very leisurely walk and get “into” the day as slowly as you dare. Spend the day doing the things you and your pet love. Offer lots of petting, kind words and praise throughout the day. Don’t overindulge your pet with treats or snuggles, and don’t feel letdown if your pet wants some alone time! Remember – one of your pet’s favorite things is probably taking a long nap or staring out the window at passersby. Let your pet have his fun in his own way, as well. If you don’t get to everything on the list... who cares? It’s all about having fun, so just go with it. Perhaps you’d like to give your pet a present. A new “jeweled” collar or a cute rain jacket will be a nice addition to your pet’s wardrobe. If you don’t accessorize your pet, a new bed or toy will always be welcome. If you’ve never given your pet a gift, it’s best to offer them the item, place it somewhere they’re used to playing or relaxing and letting them explore it at their own pace. After dinner, cozy up with your pet, grab a blanket and watch a romantic comedy on Netflix. And make no apologies if you both doze off.
What To Do
ROMANTIC DINNER(S) by Hallie Bandy
Romance, I have learned, is in the heart of the beloved. I was married at a relatively young age, long before I had a chance to become cynical. Not that I have, but I definitely have readjusted some perceptions about romance over the years. I’ve heard my share of marriage experts talk about keeping the romance alive, and I’ve watched couples celebrate Valentine’s day and special anniversaries with over-the-top gifts or trips to amazing destinations. Turns out, that’s not our style. And it’s not because we don’t have anything to celebrate. That we have survived 25 years and four kids is definitely cause for some sort of commemoration. But I just know that when it comes to how we mark the occasion, Nicholas Sparks (author of The Notebook) won’t be taking notes. Early on, I did my best to follow some by-the-book romantic standards. Somewhere I read the first anniversary was a “paper” anniversary, so I bought my husband a book. For the second year, a new cotton shirt. Year three: a leather jacket. By the “fruit and flowers” anniversary, I realized my husband had entirely missed the memo on anniversary gifts. And I don’t just mean the memo about year five being the “wood” anniversary. In truth, I think he was a little surprised that anniversary gifts were expected. I mean, after all, I had him, right? He has come around, and regularly shows up with chocolate and flowers at the right time.
Still, it has slowly became clear: sappy romance is not our forte. It’s okay. There were other reasons I married this guy. Reasons that matter. No one can be good at everything, and I’ll trade mushy sentiments for a good sense of humor any day. By our 10th anniversary, I was immersed in the day-to-day care of our two small children and hadn’t given a celebration much thought. So I was surprised that he did. A night out! No kids, nice clothes, good food. It sounded wonderful. And it was. As we headed home, I was looking forward to enjoying the rest of a quiet evening together, when we came upon a police car with its lights on. My husband rolled down the window to ask what was going on. The officer told him someone had hit a deer. “You want the tag?” the officer asked. And before I could even process what had taken place, my husband had said, “Yes,” and was loading Bambi’s cousin on the hood of our car. And that is why we arrived home from our 10th anniversary celebration with a deer on the hood of our Volkswagon. Thank goodness the kids were in bed. While my husband spent the rest of the evening with our neighbor, who helped him dress the deer in exchange for half the meat — they hung the carcass from a basketball goalpost — I took a hot bath and drank tea. We enjoyed venison dishes all winter. And say what you will about romantic celebrations — my husband may not have the edge on romance, but you can’t say he doesn’t put food on the table!
What To Do
IN THE ‘BUF’
SHOOT THE STUPID CUPID by Buffy Lawson Relationship Veteran
Society has always placed an unfair pressure on individuals indicating that we must be deeply involved in romantic relationships or something must be very, very, VERY wrong. We are hounded by our own mothers, grandmothers, aunts, friends and co-workers. “Sweetie; are you ever going to get – married?” or “You just can’t seem to find a man; bless your heart,” or the ever dreaded — “Well, you are no longer a spring chicken, my dear!” Ouch. Having surrounded with myself with fabulous, intelligent, liberated girlfriends over the years (many in relationships and many single), I have learned that one way or another, without question, being involved with the wrong man is far worse that living an independent testosterone-free lifestyle. Two of my best girlfriends, both absolutely fabulous, land on opposite sides of the spectrum with regard to this issue. Bonnie is a hopeful romantic and will go to any and all measures to find her soulmate. She watches The Notebook on a regular basis and is determined to have the large screen version of love in her life. Kat, on the other hand, genuinely enjoys her life, privacy and freedom, so much so that she is allergic to anything other than a casual date with a boy toy every now and then. She is repulsed by the thought of being tied down to one man. Each year she sends flowers to herself and all of her single friends on Valentine’s Day, signed: SHOOT THE STUPID CUPID, LOVE YOU ALWAYS: KAT These opposing dispositions make for most excellent Girl’s Night Out debates and conversations and I respect both sides of the argument, landing somewhere in the middle.
“ZERO!” She said the following week. “Huh?” We replied. “You heard me,” she spat back while sucking down her strawberry margarita. “ZERO — ZERO — ZERO!!!!! Not ONE damn match for me in the whole city of Lexington, Kentucky, apparently! Seriously? According to E-LUV, that has never happened in the history of the company.” Two days later we all got a text from Bonnie stating . . . “E-LUV FOUND A MATCH. DATE FRIDAY NIGHT. HIS PIC LOOKS AWESOME AND HE SEEMS REALLY NICE!!!! WE’VE BEEN CHATTING!” I was hopeful that Saturday, Bonnie would report that the date was nothing less than wonderful. “So, how did it go?” we asked excitedly. “Well!” she replied sharply. “He was as defiantly handsome as his picture. But before our salads were even delivered he stated that he had a confession; she went on to report, “He looked me fairly and squarely in my eyes and said: ‘You need to know something about me . . . umm, well . . . I have very serious anger management issues — yeah; I could pretty much snap at any given time.’” He went on to tell her that he still lived with his folks (42 years old) and that his alcoholism seemed to be working itself out. Needless to say, she paid the tab, went home, and ate a tub of turtle chunk ice cream. Kat was having a field day reminding poor Bonnie that this was a prime example of why she doesn’t mess with this nonsense. “SHOOT THE STUPID CUPID” my dear, Kat said. “And don’t dread Valentine’s Day. Loving yourself is the best thing you will ever do. And you are no longer a spring chicken, my dear.” Ouch.
Bonnie would love nothing more than to have the identical relationship to her parents; who recently celebrated their fiftieth year anniversary. Her father still calls her mother “Pookie Bear” and she affectionately refers to him as “Suggie Boogie”. However, for whatever reasons, Bonnie is struggling in her efforts to find her “Suggie Boogie”; though not for lack of trying. Last year, Bonnie signed up for E-LUV. As she broke the news to us during our weekly Girl’s Night Out, she was beaming with excitement about the hundreds of possible “perfect matches” that the online dating service would provide. She explained that based upon the questionnaire she filled out, an almost scientific approach would help her find multiple options. They would supply her with photos and contact information on all of the men that fit her soulmate requirements.
What To Do
SETTING THE SCENE FOR ROMANCE — IT’S ALL IN THE DETAILS by Ed Bodkin Decorating Dude
With the calendar already turning to February, chances are you are thinking about how to impress, entertain, and even entice your significant other. Or, this may be the month you begin a new relationship. Either way,one of the best aphrodisiacs is your home when handled properly. Whether it’s a million dollar mansion, penthouse apartment, mobile home, or college dorm room, your home should be a reflection of your personality. . . It should reflect your lifestyle, personality, and priorities. Your home should speak volumes about who you are. A home with lots of family photos demonstrates that family is a top priority. The art that you choose to hang on your walls should reflect your individual taste and interests. It’s easy to recognize a gourmet cook on a first visit to any home. Basically, fifteen minutes in anyone’s home will tell you a great deal more about a person than hours on a blind date or in a singles bar. This works both ways, however. Blank walls speak volumes about you, too. Are you afraid to put down roots? Fourteen empty coffee cans on your kitchen counter may indicate you are a hoarder. Piles of dirty laundry sitting around? You’re probably a slob. I’ll take bets that romance will never flourish in a house with a nasty toilet seat! Too often, we think it takes a lot of money to have a beautifully decorated home. We are intimidated by TV home makeovers and sharp magazine slicks. This creates fear that causes us to push our homes to the background. We hide this important element of our lives. Instead, we choose to meet the loves of our lives in impersonal coffee bars, restaurants, or gyms. Make a change! Let’s get our homes ready for a little romance. As most decorators will tell you, the design is in the details. Simply following your five senses can help prepare your home for your valentine! Sight I have been in some fabulously decorated homes, with top dollar furnishings, that have no appeal. The reasons? First, they are cluttered and dirty. Can you see out the windows? Is there toothpaste on the bathroom mirror? I’m certain that you take a shower before you go on a date. Do the same for your home. Second, they do not reflect the individual taste of the homeowner. Display items that are important to you. These should be the things
that make you happy. Be ready to share stories and memories about them. But proceed with caution. Gifts from exes are bound to get you on trouble. Get rid of them and move on! Smell A pleasing fragrance in a home can add a lot of appeal. Remember-be subtle. Do not mix fresh flowers, potpourri, candles, and air freshener all together. Choose one. A little goes along way. Try to tailor this to your guest. If your girlfriend likes the fragrance of a white gardenia, then by all means have one on your table. She will be impressed that you remembered. Touch Add some soft pillows to your sofa. Try a fuzzy throw on your fireplace hearth. Definitely use cloth napkins. And, with all the discount home stores, 400 tread count sheets are an affordable luxury. I’ll let you use your imagination from here. Sound Unless it’s a movie date night, turn off the television. Encourage conversation. Get to know your guest. You may spend the rest of your life with them. Feel free to add some background music, just cater it to your guest’s taste. Guys, if she likes Michael Buble, get over yourself and listen to Michael Buble. Taste If you enjoy cooking, then by all means cook your date a great meal. If you can’t cook, don’t put a lot of pressure on yourself. Remember, your home should be a reflection of you. Have some strawberries with powdered sugar. Put out a bowl of chocolate kisses. How about ice cream with chocolate syrup--or just chocolate syrup! Did I mention the importance of imagination in this article? In short, don’t be afraid to share your home. It does not have to be a designer showcase. Let it tell a story about you; and hopefully the love of your life. Let romance rock!
ozy CABIN IN THE WOODS
by Amanda Harper Photography by Shaun Ring Photography
The owners of this stunning vacation home chose to make virtually every detail feel authentic to the cabin aesthetic. They built the cabin to suit their entertaining and relaxation needs, ensuring that everyone who spent a weekend there would feel at home. The barstools feature woodland cutouts. The seats are covered in animal hide, adding a rustic touch to the modern kitchen area.
Hunting themes are common with cabins and the owners carried that over in the houseâ€™s decor. Spaces are punctuated by items like this mounted moose trophy from Alaska and vintage hunting rifle. The beautiful stonework brought in from Tennessee adds to the rustic feel while creating textural interest inside the house, contrasting against the homeâ€™s wooden interior. This incredible mule deer antler chandelier hangs above the dining table. Oarback chairs flank the sides while a pair of coordinating captains chairs sit on either end of the table.
The master bedroom has a gas fireplace and a television inset into the stonework. A bear skin rug is a quintessential cabin decor item, and offers a plush footing on the hardwood flooring. The windows offer guests a breathtaking outlook, providing a view of the lake. The king size bed features a wrought iron design, picking up on the black touches in the room. A ceiling fan allows the owners to open up the windows in summer and enjoy the cool lake breezes. The master bathroom features a vintage-style clawfoot tub. The towel racks, made from cedar from the property to look like natural wood limbs, add a rustic touch. Two windows look out onto the lake, offering guests a lovely backdrop while they unwind. Inset lighting casts a soft, relaxing glow on the space. The cabin features three bedrooms and three full baths, but can comfortably sleep nine guests — though its owners have had even larger groups! This was a big goal for the cabin’s owners, allowing them to entertain and gather their family together for holidays and special occasions. Tucked along the edge of a private lake, the cabin is a true getaway. Guests travel along a gravel road to reach the cabin which helps them slow down and enjoy the natural beauty of the area while offering a preview of the rustic charm to come!
The owners transported sand themselves to create a “beach” area by the lake. Stairs lead down to the water and a mini dock, allowing guests to take full advantage of the cabin’s amazing location. The owners have a pontoon and a fishing boat they use in the summer. Even in the winter, this area is beautiful to see and enjoy. The owners made a conscious decision to preseve the natural growth surrounding the cabin. The native weeds, grasses, shrubs and fullsize trees all still surround the property, allowing it to feel like a natural part of the area’s landscape. From the lake, the cabin almost looks like a treehouse rising out of the natural growth. The walkout basement serves as a game room. Guests can enjoy a game of darts, pingpong or foosball in this cozy space. The basement has a bathroom and sleeper couch, allowing it to be converted into a guest room when needed. The open layout could allow the space to easily serve a number of purposes.
The home’s great room serves as an entertaining space. The kitchen looks out into the living area, which has a wood burning fireplace. The natural wood railings, made from cedar taken from the property, provide a lovely natural touch leading up to the loft. The walkout basement leads to the home’s hot tub and down the stairs to the dock. The great room’s porch features a more expansive view of the lake. Rocking chairs provide guests with a wonderful place to sip coffee and take in the splendor of nature. In the warmer months, the cabin is a great spot for fishing and cookouts. In the winter, it’s ideal for gatherings with family or quiet weekends for two. Just under an hour away from Lexington, the cabin is a great romantic getaway, far from the hustle and bustle of daily life.
What To Do
HOME GARDENING VERTICAL GARDENING
by Michelle Rauch, Gardening Enthusiast
They are known as vertical gardens or living walls. Whatever you choose to call them, they make an eye-catching statement that will have people talking. If you think you just don’t have enough space to garden you may be overlooking the ideal spot that is staring you in the face. Vertical gardening is an alternative for those of you who don’t have the space to grow out, but you do have a spot to grow up. Do you have a small patio balcony that has a bare wall? Perfect. Tiny yard with an unattractive fence you would like to beautify? There you go! Space is not an issue with vertical gardening. Large city dwellers have already discovered the beauty of vertical gardening in their compact living quarters, but it’s popularity is spreading to the suburban sprawl. Vertical gardening adds a whole new dimension to your landscape. Think of it as container gardening, but instead of leaving potted plants displayed on the ground or a tabletop, you’re hanging them up like a piece of artwork. The popularity has prompted manufacturers to create planting pockets. They can be filled with potting soil and plants and are ready made to hang on a wall or fence. They are fantastic for a simple, clean look and are perfect for plants that spill over and ultimately hide the pockets for the ultimate living
Hanging Gutter Outdoor Garden
Wallflower Vertical Garden System Designed by Haldane Martin
wall. I am always looking outside the box, or in this case the pocket. Anything can be your foundation for a vertical garden planter as long as you provide adequate drainage. Before you throw out your old rain gutters think about recycling them for a vertical garden. What about paint cans? For a sleek, modern look you can peel the labels off to expose the metal can. If you are like me and prefer whimsy in your garden, paint the cans with a splash of color. Looking for a rustic feel? Try an old wood pallet. You can take your vertical gardening indoors. If you have a wall in your kitchen near a window, think about planting an herb garden. Talk about fresh herbs at your fingertips year round! Like container gardening, you will need to pay more attention to watering. That’s a small price to pay when you consider you’ve turned a drab wall into a “wow” wall! Don’t ever let space be an issue. I consider myself older and wiser now and regret all those years of apartment dwelling when I simply imagined the day I would have a yard so I could begin to garden. If only I knew then what I know now.
MEET THE MEDIA BILL MECK: “WEATHER GEEK” AND PROUD OF IT
by Michelle Rauch Photos courtesy of David Lloyd and Bill Meck 98
ill Meck started forecasting the weather when he was in first grade. His career path started with weather books his parents gave him. The interest was cultivated even more after his 5th grade teacher interceded. “She made me a weather map out of felt. Every day I would put the stuff on the map and every day I would give a weather report to the class,” Bill chuckles, “Oh, how big of a geek was I.” Bill says Mrs. Wormley is arguably the best teacher he ever had. They have reconnected on Facebook and today she is implementing Bill’s weather wisdom in her classroom. Growing up outside of Chicago gave Bill plenty to forecast during those impressionable young years. “If you watch me enough you know I love snow,” he says. That’s now. Back then Bill grew up watching WGN’s Tom Skilling who still forecasts there today. Bill was one of his weather watchers when he was in high school. He admits he used the veteran meteorologist’s name to get his first job! “I did some name dropping out at Ames, Iowa.” Bill was attending college at Iowa State University. In a unique arrangement, the local ABC television affiliate, WOI, was owned by the university. That relationship allowed for a lot of student involvement at the TV station for aspiring journalists and weathercasters. Bill jumped right in his freshman year. He admits he was horrible, but hooked. “I kept hanging around a couple more years. I think they got tired of seeing me. They finally let me on the air. May 17th, 1984 was my first day on TV. At 20 years old, I may have been the youngest kid in the country on-air doing weather,” Bill says. He has been on the air ever since.
the week. He also came in on Saturdays for a noon newscast. Normally it was a position given to a senior for one semester, but they gave it to Bill after his sophomore year and he held on to it for the next two years. Good timing was on his side to move up. “Senior year the number one and number two guys left within two weeks of each other, which left me as the only person in the building who knew how to do weather,” Bill reflects, “So here I am a senior in college, the main guy at the ABC affiliate in Des Moines. I would finish the 10 o’clock news and go back to my dorm.” CULTURE SHOCK
“This is what I’ve wanted to do since becoming capable of cognizant thought.”
It was the summer before his junior year. He started with weather cut-ins during Good Morning America. “That’s all we had. Morning news did not exist back then.” That was during
Did you know: The meteorologist stands in front of green screen backdrops, pointing to maps and radar. Backgrounds change as information moves forward from city, state, national weather forecast to radar etc.
“I had never heard of Spartanburg, SC until I was offered a job there.” To say it was a culture shock for the guy who grew up in the Midwest with shall we say “generous” winters is an understatement. Remember, this is a man who loves snow. Bill describes living in the South where they don’t have winter as an “experience”. After six years in South Carolina he moved to Roanoke, VA and worked at a TV station there for another three years. His nine years in the South gave him time to learn how the business works. Next stop, Indianapolis for three years and then Lexington. CHOICES BROUGHT HIM TO LEXINGTON “People ask where you’re from. I tell them Lexington now. Because this is home. I can’t help where I was born. But I can help where I live. This is where I wanted my daughter to grow up and she is—very quickly,” he says. Bill’s daughter Olivia was a year and a half old when he and his wife Connie moved to Lexington in 1999. Their decision to move to Lexington had everything to do with family. Bill was working double shifts on the weekends in Indy and admits the schedule was getting to be unbearable. “It was hard to pull off and
Broadcasting from the Bluegrass Stakes
Who’s Who be a good parent,” he says. That’s when he decided to get off the career path. He was offered the main weather forecasting job in Har tford, Connecticut and passed on it after he went to the city for an interview. It was not a place I could raise my daughter. When Bill arrived in Lexington for his interview he loved it and they have never looked back. “It has been the most wonderful thing to come here and raise Olivia and be from here. I take great pride in that,” he says. BILL’S WEATHER 101 More than seventy-thousand school kids in Kentucky have had the benefit of Bill’s Weather 101 in the classroom during the last thirteen years. He takes his weather know-how into schools. Bill teaches weather in a way that engages the kids. Balloons and spinning chairs are among the props to show the students how weather works. These lessons aren’t limited to weather. “I also tell the kids it’s okay to be a geek. What happens to geeks when we grow up is we get to do what we want to do,” he says. He encourages the kids to pick up books as a means to explore their own potential. “Find what you think is interesting and read it. Who knows, you may find what
you want to do later in life just by reading these books.” He remembers one 4th grader in Liberty who looked at him like the light went off and said “Oh, you have choices!” Bill says, “When they get it, it’s the coolest thing in the whole world”. He was also flattered when a first-year teacher in Woodford county invited him into her classroom because she wanted her students to have the same experience she did. This teacher, it turns out, was a former student in one of Bill’s Weather 101 presentations. LIFE OUTSIDE WORK “Most of our life revolves around our daughter.” Olivia Meck plays soccer for Lexington Catholic. Dad smiles with pride since she made varsity as a freshman. She is also the goalie on Lexington’s Premier soccer team. When they are not traveling on the weekends to watch her soccer games, the Mecks are home. “I am pretty much a homebody,” he says. You may see Bill out on occasion following one of the local bands. He has followed the eighties cover band, Radio 80 and its different incarnations, for nearly nine years. “They are good! For me, it’s fun to hang out with them because its like hanging out with the cool kids. I’m a geek,” he says with pure pride. He is also proud of his wife, Connie. She is a sign language instructor at BCTC and a freelance ASL interpreter. Bill is also a collector. “I don’t throw anything away,” he admits. He has a beer can collection that started back in the 70s when it was a passing fad. “At one point it swelled into a couple thousand cans. That got to be too much to move so I got rid of everything that was aluminum. So now all I have are cans from the mid-70s and earlier. They are essentially antiques.” Among them, steel cans that date back to the 40s. A couple years ago his wife finally let him bring a few of the cans into the house. He is an avid sports fan and watches the Bears. He is the commissioner of his neighborhood fantasy football league and has also been given the title of ‘Liaison of Fun’ within his homeowners association board for his ability to plan neighborhood events.
Who’s Who There is one thing that is surprising about this self-described “weather-geek”. He does not have a weather station or even a weather thermometer at home. “I have gotten to the point I leave it at work,” Bill says. WEATHER MATTERS When he is at work Bill is all about weather. He takes it seriously. “I know people are making decisions based on what I’m saying. It’s a difficult thing.” He says the hardest thing to forecast happens to be his favorite – snow. “I wish we had more snow. The last two winters have been good. I hate ice.” Bill says forecasting snow here is a nightmare because the rain-snow line is cutting through somewhere in Kentucky. “We are the transition zone which makes it hard. Fifteen miles makes all the difference in the world.” He says when it comes to pinpointing that, you’re on the edge of the science which takes a lot of precision. “Snow you lose sleep over because its coming a couple days in advance and people want to know three days in advance ‘Will it snow in my backyard?’” Severe weather days are very hectic. The threat of high winds and tornadoes is dangerous. “There are times I am trying to scare you. It’s dangerous and your life can literally change in a matter of minutes,” he says. Bill is still troubled by the tornado that ripped through Madison county a couple years ago. “Those were the first people who died under my watch. That
hurt—obviously nothing like the family felt. I carried that one for a long time,” Bill says. The Madison county tornado was a low point. Among his high points–being right ahead of the F-3 tornado that ripped through the Masterson Station neighborhood. “We were the only ones on the air alerting people before the storm hit, before official warnings were issued,” he says. Another memorable moment dates back to his college days when he had the ability to cancel his own school. “It was my senior year over Thanksgiving. The weather service said two to four inches. I’m on the air saying there is a blizzard. Six to ten inches. It’s getting barbaricly cold and the president of the university called the station. He cancelled the Monday classes. It’s pretty cool to cancel your own school,” he says. By the way, Bill’s forecast was right! FORECASTING THE FUTURE “I’m here as long as they want me.” Bill’s award winning forecasts at LEX18 have prompted out-of-state offers he has declined. Even one offer that would have put him back near his hometown. “We went to Chicago for a Cubs game several years ago and I just looked around and realized I could not raise my daughter there,” he says. Bill’s forecast for his future: 15 more years at LEX18 before retring. “They treat me very well here. The community is wonderful,” he says.
Watch Bill weekdays on WLEX-18 at 5pm, 5:30pm, 6pm, 7pm, & 11pm Listen weekdays to NewsTalk 590 WVLK at 2:50pm with Kruser Log on to Bill’s blog at lex18.com and and his Facebook fan page
What’s New The finalists in the $100,000 Abundant Transformation have been named. Now, it’s up to the public to choose who will win! The twelve finalists each show great potential to complete the transformation, shared inspiring stories that showed them deserving of this amazing opportunity and had a unique need for assistance. Many incredible submissions were received and tears were shed in the selection process, but in the end, these twelve finalists showed great promise and worthiness. Two grand prize winners will each receive an incredible prize package, including: amazing health and cosmetic services from Abundant Living Medical, Urban Active, Schroeder Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, Skin Solutions and Triple Crown Chiropractic, as well as services from Mr. Sparkle and a trip to NYC and 2 VIP tickets to meet Dr. Oz at the Dr. Oz Show
provided by ABC 36 and Abundant Living Medical. All of the runners-up will receive an Abundant Health Transformation Package worth $2,500. Voters will be able to review a full bio and video interview of each contestant. Voting will begin February 1st. The winner will be determined in early March. Visit www.TOPSinLex.com to vote or to review the complete contest rules, voting rules and all other details.
$100,000 Abundant Transformation To VOTE visit TOPSinLex.com To Meet the Contestants, go to page 38!
Those who need non-medical in-home care in Central Kentucky know it can be difficult to find a professional who specializes in an individual’s unique needs. Assisting Hands Home Care aims to fulfill that need and exceed expectations with an unmatched quality of care.
Assisting Hands Home Care offers free in-home consultations, provided by Boggs. They employ only the best caregivers, who each are extensively trained and have passed a 7-year national background check, drug test, TB skin test and are CPR certified.
Assisting Hands is locally owned and operated by Melissa Boggs, RN, who is experienced in caring for geriatric and pediatric patients. Boggs also has a background in mental health related diseases.
The professional staff of Assisting Hands is able to provide a wide range of services, including; personal care, grooming, toileting, feeding, catheter care, medication reminders, transportation, light housekeeping, respite care, companion care and 24-hour in-home care. They also offer other services, customizing each care plan to the individual’s needs. Assisting Hands Home Care offers a superior quality of service. Their highly-trained staff provides each inidividual with comfort and care.
Assisting Hands Home Care 1795 Alysheba Way Ste 7105 859.264.0646 www.assistinghands.com/lexington
Jamba® offers a wide variety of delicious menu items made from quality ingredients that contain 0g trans fat, no high fructose corn syrup, no artificial flavors and no artificial preservatives. Offerings include blended-to-order smoothies made with real, whole fruit and all-natural fruit juice including: all-fruit and fruit and vegetable smoothies; fresh-squeezed juices; slow-cooked, artisan oatmeal made with organic steel cut oats; wraps; salads; sandwiches; tasty
California Flatbreads™; hot beverages; Whirl’ns™ frozen yogurt as well as a variety of baked goods and snacks. Designed to support a variety of customers’ health needs, the Lexington Jamba Juice store is pleased to offer Jamba’s latest smoothie offering--the Fit’n Fruitful™ smoothie with Weight Burner Boost™ in three delicious flavors. Jamba Juice has more than 750 locations nationwide. Franchisees Emmy & Don Marquess and Mary & John Speaker are excited to bring this leading health and wellness brand to Lexington. They plan to open their second store in Fayette Mall in the spring and additional locations in Kentucky, Southern Indiana, and Southern Ohio. Jamba Juice encourages everyone to Live Fruitfully™ by embracing each day, each moment and each opportunity to be healthy, active and have fun! (This location will accept the UK Plan Accounts.)
ounded in 1990 out of a vision to inspire and simplify healthy living, Jamba Juice®, known for its specialty beverage and food offerings, opened a new location in Lexington this January.
Jamba Juice Center Court 535 S Upper St 859.523.1205 jambajuice.com
he owners of the much-loved Pure Barre Lexington have created a new, niche fitness concept called Sweat. Conveniently located in the heart of Chevy Chase, just above Pure Barre, Sweat offers a challenging and exciting cardiovascular group fitness workout. This new fitness location is the first and only of its kind. Sweat offers unique, professional and effective cardiovascular workouts led by some of the best-trained instructors in Lexington. The workouts are specially designed to provide the ideal balance to a strength training fitness regimen, for an athlete’s cross-training needs or as a great option for people who want to introduce themselves into Cardio workouts.
blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels; reduce the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis; and burn calories, assisting participants in their weight management goals. The BarreCardio classes feature a low-impact, heart-pumping workout that hustles muscles to their limits, utilizing the Ballet Barre for balance and resistance. Crew classes incorporate elements of real team rowing in an indoor setting. Ideal for women and men, Sweat offers an exhilarating new take on fitness for Central Kentucky.
Cardio workouts are shown to strengthen and improve heart and lung functions. They are shown to improve
Sweat Lex Fitness 867 E High St Ste 250 859.368.7922 www.sweatlex.com
Nancy Barron and Kim Harris
Tom and Marty Myers
Mary Beth Magyar and Todd Milbrant
Kara Hobbs, Neil Sulier, Andrea Coates and Erik Carlson
Paula Anderson, Stephanie Spires, Elizabeth Deener and Tanzi Merrit
LAL and QX.net Preview Party for Body/Figure/Nude Guests were the first to see LALâ€™s most anticipated exhibition of the year, in its new form Body/ Figure/Nude. This exhibition highlights contemporary art that does not merely present the human form. Rather, the works use the body, figure or nude as a metaphor or allegorical vehicle for aesthetic experimentation as well as exploration of modern life, modern identity, and social and sexual politics. lexingtonartleague.org Photos by Paul Atkinson
Buddy Amato and Linda Gilker
Dennis Boyd and Phyllis Roberts
Gwen Hart, Mary Gail Engle, Christine Parsons, Mary Jennes, Frankie Amato and Robin Gornto
Tim Parsons and Barb & Ben Falmen
Susan English and Lisa Acree
Mike & Linda Foley
Tish & Walter Moffett and Bill & Patsy Melton
Lexington Yacht Club Installation of Officers
The Lexington Yacht Club installed its 2012 officers at the Marriott Griffin Gate Resort on January 14. Commodore Mike Hart will serve with Jackie Carter, Mary Gail Engle, Mike Foley, Ray and Linda Gilker, and Cathy Parks. The group looks forward to a fun year of safe boating and events such as the Commodoreâ€™s Reception, Blessing of the Boats and gatherings on Cumberland and Herrington lakes. lexyacht.com Photos by David Desjardins
Olivia Soul, Debbie A. Cole and Tangela Dabney
Mr. & Ms. Rashad Majeed
Montrell Hawkins, Samantha Hawkins, Chandra Howard and Rikia Hawkins
Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Epsilon Chi Undergraduate Chapter
John E Cole III, Daniel Pierre and Laura Boison 2011 AAF Lifetime Achievement Award Presentation
Loreal Russell and Desiree Rice
African American Ballâ€™s Men of Standard
19th Annual African American Ball The African American Ball (AAB) is a regional arts & cultural gala held annually that celebrates the African American Experience. Attendees are treated to an incomparable presentation of art, culture, entertainment, music, dancing, fashion and fellowship â€“ all in an elegant, formal atmosphere that makes the AAB truly unique and memorable. aafinc.com Photos by Darryl McLean & Greg Mobley
Nicole Pence and Brad Kerrick
Lisa & Jon Schaeffer
John & Sherry Carpenter and George Zack
Faye Porter and Ellen Karpf
Allison Kaiser and Dr. Ron Saykaly
Martha & Larry Deener and Roger Duvall
Scott Terrell and Allison Kaiser
Brittney Edwards and Rafaela DeNegri
Lexington Philharmonic’s “And the Award Goes To...” On Saturday, January 14, LexPhil celebrated its 50th Anniversary season with the “And the Award Goes To…” concert event recognizing the individuals and institutions that have made the first 50 years possible. Award-winning film scores and red-carpet glamour set the tone for the evening, with patrons walking the red-carpet on their way in to the Lexington Opera House, where the concert took place. lexphil.org Photos by Judy and Brian Myers
David Dean, Ralph Coldiron and Steve Renshaw
Wayne Hancock and David Maynard
Time for a group photo!
Stepphone Mack and Scott Casey
Donald Smothers and Cathryn Gibson
17th Annual Kentucky Chamber Day At the opening of the 2012 General Assembly, hundreds of business leaders from across Kentucky joined together as the governor and the stateâ€™s top four legislative leaders shared their visions for Kentuckyâ€™s economy, government and politics in the year ahead. kychamber.com Photos by Paul Atkinson
Jennifer Bricking and Amber Philpot
Kathryn Hansen and Nancy Atkins
Cara Perry and Katie Hunt
Allie Darling and Judy Jackson
Cindy Rosales, Adeline Franco, Jessica Merriman and Sonia Boniface
Susan Rayer, Kate Savage and Janet Holloway
Dr. Augusta Julian, Deirdre Lyons and Isabel Yates
Women Leading Kentucky Roundtable Luncheon Women Leading Kentucky roundtables offer tremendous networking opportunities. Featuring prominent Kentuckians as keynotes, these roundtables support Women Leading Kentuckyâ€™s goal of providing scholarships to women throughout the commonwealth. womenleadingky.com Photos by Jaron Johns
Sue and Neal Mize
President Eli Capilouto and Dr. Mary Lynne Capilouto
Ann and Dean Cook
Joyce Orrahood and Sarah Hall
Mimi Ilgaz and the OLLI Line Dancercize Class
Carol Leinenbach and Bernadette Salone
UKâ€™s OLLI Donovan Fellowship Luncheon The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UK and Donovan Fellows came together to celebrate lifelong learning at the annual luncheon in December. Special guest, UK President Eli Capilouto, announced a second endowment gift of $1 million from the Bernard Osher Foundation. Over 1,000 participants age 50-90+ participate in OLLI courses, forums, events and special interest groups. Donovan Fellows, age 65+, take traditional academic courses. mc.uky.edu/aging/ Photos by David Desjardins
What To Do
THE PROPOSAL by Marsha Koller Wedding Consultant
While your love is the foundation, your marriage proposal sets the stage for your new life together. So begin as you wish to continue – thoughtfully, lovingly and with respect. The tradition of getting down on one knee originated from a gentleman’s pose showing his ultimate respect for his bride. Proposal traditions like this are not necessarily required in this not so genteel day, but most women will tell you they want those traditions so their special moment to be is really special. Here are things we propose to keep in mind when proposing… Think First Before You Jump Above all make sure this is the person you want to spend the rest of your life with – forever is a long time. If you have to do a list of Pro’s and Con’s, either she’s not the one or you aren’t close to being ready to tie the knot. Ask for Her Hand Nothing is sweeter than asking her father - or mother - for her hand in marriage. It’s an old tradition, but it sends a message of respect to her family which is important because a lifetime of holidays and family dinners together stretch before you. You do marry a family as well as your bride, after all, and everyone, especially your bride, will sincerely appreciate this old-fashioned gesture. A modern day twist on this is to ask for her hand after you propose. Note of caution: If you think your significant other would find this offensive or sexist…skip this option entirely! Come with the Bling If you want to surprise her and pop the question without the ring, don’t. An official proposal without the ring means, well, not much. It just makes the real moment much less special. On the other hand many couples just naturally get to the point of shopping for their ring together, which is great and a natural evolution of a solid relationship. If you want to surprise her with a ring but are unsure of the style she would like, enlist the help of her best friend, mother or jeweler who knows her tastes. Or propose with the diamond in a plain Tiffany setting, and enjoy the process of shopping together for the mounting that suits her tastes. It’s the best of both worlds!
Decide Where to Propose In this era of YouTube, every bride to be has seen multitudes of romantic and creative proposals. If she is the romantic type, don’t just casually pop the question because she could be disappointed. Not putting any thought into the proposal could send a message to her that you don’t care enough. When deciding where to propose, think about places that are important to both of you, when you will be in a romantic locale, or a fun setting that will be memorable for years to come. Be Creative but Don’t Overdo It Your proposal can make her feel that she is the only girl in the world if you tailor it to her. It absolutely doesn’t need to be in front of thousands – a personal evening between the two of you is even more endearing. Think about what her favorite things are, like is she a movie buff (the old ring in the popcorn box trick), does she love to ice skate (her new piece of ‘ice’ frozen in a piece of ice), or hide the ring in her favorite box of chocolates. You get the picture. Deciding When to Propose Any time of day is appropriate, but the date is something to consider. Think about getting engaged on the anniversary of your first date or a significant date between the two of you. Getting engaged on a holiday has its pros and cons – you may have family around when you pop the question, but you will always remember your engagement date and make that holiday more meaningful. Keep it to Yourself Don’t tell too many people about your plans – secrets have a way of making themselves known and can spoil your surprise. She will appreciate not being the last to know! Seal It With a Kiss Make your engagement all about her, but remember sometimes just having the ring in your pocket, waiting for a special moment will be the most special proposal of all. When she says yes, seal the deal with a kiss!
September 25, 2011
Brock & Luke Maitland
by Michele Landers
ong distance relationships are nothing new, but they usually don’t start out that way. Only in this day and age could a first date take place between a girl in Kentucky and boy in England using Skype. Of course, it would have been much easier if it had happened two years earlier when they were introduced by friends while attending UK, instead of after Luke had graduated and moved back to England. Their journey from that night to now has been about beating the odds; and their determination to make it work, admirable. They bridged the distance using Skype and their website. Their dreams, hopes, fears and wedding plans played out in their blog, the modern equivalent to love letters. Luke asked Brock’s father for her hand via Skype, the proposal was documented on video for their family and friends to see and trips back and forth from the states to England allowed them to stay close and overcome the odds of a long distance relationship. The date was set and The Fountain Head in New Rochelle, New York was chosen as the wedding venue. The black tie wedding featured bridesmaids in signature black evening gowns, and the groomsmen decked out in black tuxedos with black bow ties. The purple accent color was brought out in the bouquets, the groomsmen’s handkerchiefs and the bride’s Manolo Blahnik shoes. The groom wore a black satin three piece suit with Swarovski crystal buttons.
To personalize their chapel ceremony, Brock and Luke composed their own wedding vows; had a friend sing songs that were close to their hearts and had another friend read scripture in Italian. After the ceremony guests mingled and enjoyed passed hors d’oeuvres and drinks in the Atrium. A sumptuous dinner including Thai, Spanish, and fine Italian cuisine followed in the Fountain Head Grand Ballroom. For dessert, an elegant white wedding cake with French Patisserie detailing and topped with lavender roses was accompanied by a selection of flavored cupcakes. After dinner guests were entertained by celebrity DJ Jasmine Solano along with a live performance by singer, Shyvonne. At the end of the night guests held hands and circled around the couple for their last dance. An after party followed at the hotel. Looking back, Brock remembers the special moments of the day including an exchange of sentimental notes to each other just before the ceremony; their entrance into the ballroom after the cocktail hour, which reminded Brock of a Cinderella storybook moment; and the choreographed dance performed by the groom and his groomsmen for the bride and their guests. Brock and Luke wouldn’t change a thing about their wedding day, and Brock’s advice to other couples getting married is to not stress, everything works out in the end.
Photography by Jensen Photography: Jeff Calenberg & Jeff Jensen 122
Details: Wedding Planner: Heidi Shackelford Photographer: Jensen Photography DJ: Jasmine Solano Singer: Shyvonne Venue: The Fountain Head in New Rochelle, NY
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