December 2 0 1 1
FREE! Gifts Galore Seasonal Décor ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Michele Fife SEVA YOGA ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
PK Mason PAPERS PLUS/MASON JONES ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Wine 101 ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Mia Walker SMOOCH ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Rhonda Solomon CANARY HOME STUDIO ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Lisa Jabara HOT MAMA ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Michael Malcolm A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A GRFD FIREFIGHTER ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Saying Thank You E S S E N T I A L
E N T E R T A I N I N G
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Beauty Guru Marianne Bockheim Lifestyle Writer Janice Lynne Lundy Conquerer of Clutter Mary Dykstra MBA, CPO Book Reviewer Alexandra Fix Contributing Writers LeAnn Secord Ashley Cole Kim Monaghan Latesha Lipscomb Photography Daniel E. Johnson Ruth Parbel Two Eagles Marcus Web Master Two Eagles Marcus Sales Roxanne O’Neil email@example.com Carolyn K. Swash firstname.lastname@example.org Intern Bri Kilroy
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Holiday Magic Interior Ideas: Seasonal Décor ........................................4 Gifts Galore! ........................................................10, 31, 32 CharacterGIFTics ............................................................18 All in a Day’s Work GRFD’s Michael Malcolm ............................................24 Gifts of Legacy ................................................................38
Broaden Your Horizons It Just Takes Desire Michele Fife ....................................................................8 PK Mason ........................................................................8 Rhonda Solomon ............................................................9 Lisa Jabara ......................................................................9 Mia Walker ......................................................................9 Wine 101 ........................................................................ 22 December Events .......................................................... 26 Reader's Lounge ............................................................40
Career The Follow Up: Saying Thanks ........................................36 Do’s and Don’ts for Exchanging Gifts with Coworkers ................................42
WEBSITE: www.womenslifestyle.com MAIL: 820 Monroe, NW, Suite 320 Grand Rapids, MI 49503 FACEBOOK: facebook.com/WLMag
Coming in January
Looking & Feeling Good Holiday Glamour ..............................................................6 Fabulous ‘40s Fashion ....................................................12 Organizing Strategies to Maximize Your Joy .............. 34
Recipes Sweet Homemade Treats Cinnamon Spiced Café Latte ....................................16 Banana-Mango Bread Pudding with Coconut Caramel Sauce............................................16
w o m e n s l i f e s t y l e . c o m December 2011
i n t e r i o r
i d e a s
Ashley Cole is a professional interior designer based in Grand Rapids. Her work has been featured on HGTV as well as numerous publications, including Kitchen Trends and Home Magazine. Ashley’s passion is “creating environments that enliven the spirit.” Visit her website at www.ashleycoledesign.com.
by Ashley Cole
f you’re anything like me, decorating for the holidays is something to look forward to. I make it an event; bring out the snacks, turn on festive music and cherish each holiday treasure as it comes out of the storage boxes. This ritual really brings me into the season. Beyond the excitement of upcoming celebrations, decorating for the holidays is a reason to give your home a mini facelift, without a long term commitment. Seasonal décor has a way of adding sparkle to an otherwise neutral space. There are ways to incorporate decorations into your existing rooms while maintaining a feeling of cohesiveness with your existing design.
Theme Stay with one theme and style for your holiday decorating. It makes your space feel professionally finished. If you look through home magazines featuring seasonal décor, you’ll notice that throughout many of the spreads, there is a linear theme for each home. It helps pull things together and takes away the chaotic feel you encounter walking down overdone holiday aisles in craft stores. Chances are you already have a number of items within the same theme. Start with those and add to it each year.
Choose 2 to 3 colors for your holiday palette and keep it consistent. Multiple color palettes can become too distracting.
Color Choose 2 to 3 colors for your holiday palette and keep it consistent. Multiple color palettes can become too distracting. Try using combinations like gold, brown and red or silver, blue and white for something fresh. Let the colors that you lean toward for your overall home decorating lead the way to the seasonal palette. Why not make it an extension of your home?
Space Give your rooms a different look and feel for this special time of year. Re-arrange your furniture so the focal point is the tree, fireplace or wherever you may hang stockings. Create the best lay-out for cozy conversations and entertaining. Extend the dining table as part of your initial holiday decorating in preparation for gatherings. It will be one more item off your to-do list just before the guests arrive.
For overall lighting, I always suggest layering different types of light and dimmer switches wherever possible. For the holiday season, it is even more important to create the right mood with lighting. Don’t go overboard with multi-colored strand lighting. Small, white lights are the most versatile and pleasing. They go with any color scheme and will last for years to come. When entertaining, don’t underestimate the power of candlelight.
You wouldn’t choose an abundance of paper and plastic items for your long-term house décor, so why bring it into your home for the holidays? Keep these materials to a minimum. Invest in quality keepsakes that can be brought out year after year and passed down to the next generation. Wood carved holiday figures, colorful glassware, vintage metal platters, pinecone wreathes and luxurious swags of fabric are just some ideas to look for. Like anything else in your home, you should love it!
HOME ~ accessories GIFTS ~ handmade FURNITURE ~ urban GARDEN ~ elements FLOWERS ~ fresh
Ho Ho Ho… the holidays are here! It’s time to celebrate with merriment and gift giving – and, of course, delectable treats. As we cheer to family and friends, let’s not forget the traditions that brought us to today. Whether it be shopping with your sister or baking cookies with your mom or even trimming the tree with your closest friends and getting tangled in the twinkle lights, these are the special moments. They are certainly some of mine. Take the time to recognize the simple pleasures during this frenzied season. And, make some new heirloom memories too. Attend one of the upcoming events on our December calendar, pick up one of the books from the Reader’s Lounge, try one of the scrumptious recipes, or transform your home into a winter wonderland with the décor tips. There’s even a feature on some of the local, women-owned shops in Gaslight Village. Check out a store you haven’t been to before. Who knows what treasure you might find for that special someone. Time truly does fly. Another year wraps up for us at Women’s Lifestyle Magazine. All of us are looking forward to next year full of new surprises and continuing to bring you essential, entertaining and enlightening information. As always, thank you for your support and encouragement. From our family to yours… we wish you a magical holiday season and blessings throughout the new year.
Punky & MeiMei agree . . .
Snuggling never felt so good!
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So many parties… so little time. any of us find our busy selves dashing all December long from one party to the next – running from work to an evening soiree. So how do you stay looking fresh throughout the day and into the evening? How do you go from day time professional to merry and festive in a jiffy? Here are a few of my secrets and some of my favorite items I throw in my bag to help make the glamorous transition.
1. Refresh your fragrance at the end of the day. Perfume is not developed to last all day so feel free to freshen up with another spritz. 2. Use a makeup and lid primer after applying skincare, but before applying all over makeup. This will keep you looking fresh longer and keep makeup from disappearing. 3. Mid-day blahs? For dry skin, freshen-up your look by lightly “pressing” moisturizer over makeup. For oilier skin, freshen with blotting sheets then lightly dust face with translucent powder. 4. Bare legs? Lotion up and dust with a little shimmer bronzer for sexy, glowing skin. 5. Back-comb hair to add a little volume, shake, then lightly spray to add shine and protect. 6. Add lip gloss and then go and enjoy the festivities.
by Marianne Bockheim
6 1. Diane by DVF It all started in 1974 when the wrap dress was launched by Diane VonFurstenburg — making her mark in fashion. And now she does it again with her new fragrance, Diane; a sensual, sophisticated fragrance that is as recognizable as her famous wrap dress. Diane is infused with exotic base notes such as myrrh and musk, and laced with familiar essences of vanilla and violet, as well as floral and green accents. Very modern. Very special. Very holiday glamour. $90-$110.
2. It’s a 10 Miracle Shine Spray From anti-humidity to adding softness and taming frizzies, It’s a 10 Miracle Shine Spray will make your hair look like a million bucks. Throw it in your handbag for a little extra spritz of control and shine later in the day. A must have for holiday beauty. $19.96.
3. Fusion Beauty Plump and Re-Plump Liquid Lipstick in Starlet A shimmering blast of trendy color instantly lifts and hydrates lips simply by licking them. This is the perfect product when needing glamour on the go. Love the color and love the convenience. $41.
4. YBF Automatic Eyebrow Pencil Duo Eyebrows frame your eyes and balance your face, so the brows cannot be overlooked. These eyebrow pencils match any color and there’s no need for sharpening – just twist. Giving customizable color and a natural feathery look, this convenient pencil has a no-fail application, day or night. $20 for two brow pencils.
5. Skintimate Baby Soft Shave Cream Create extra shine and smoothness all year long with the Skintimate Baby Soft Shave Cream with vitamin E, baby oil, and anti-oxidants. Legs will feel smooth, moisturized, and look fabulous with that holiday cocktail dress. It’s definitely a personal favorite of mine.$2.95.
6. Beth Bender’s The Get in Line Eyeliner Stencil Kit So you have this really big night planned. You want to look special, but you have a little difficulty with applying certain products – eyeliner being one of them. Well help has arrived…and without an appointment. Using Beth Bender’s
Get in Line Kit you can get those sexy cat eyes easily. Even Kate Middleton is rumored to be a devoted fan of the product.$32.
7. Smashbox Softbox or Smokebox Eye Shadow Palettes Get a range of photo-ready day and night eye looks with these fail-safe palettes. Softbox includes six ethereal shades to create lovely, soft looks while Smokebox gives you six perfectly coordinated shadows in dramatic shades. Each allow you to simply scan the tag or peel back the shade label on the palette for application tips. Why choose one when you can have both. $42 each.
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Find your balance! Grand Rapids Tai Chi Center
Winter classes now forming Grand Rapids Tai Chi Center offers ongoing Yang and Chen style Tai Chi group classes. Teacher Gary Lee is a certified instructor with more than 15 years experience.
Steven J. Lown, D.O. • Peter Kaczkofsky, D.O. • Kelly Hansul, D.O. • Mary Beth Grey, D.O. • Judy A. Florido, D.O. • Brad Irving, D.O.
Grand Rapids 247-3800
4300 Cascade Road
2221 Health Drive SW • Suite 2100
Winter Beginners Special: 2 sessions, 4 weeks each Jan 9-30, and Feb 6-27, only $25/session! Private instruction also available in East Grand Rapids area; please contact Gary for more information
(Near Byron Center Ave. & 56th Street)
Offices also located in: Caledonia and Wayland: 532-5025 Belmont, Comstock Park and Cedar Springs: 247-3800
or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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It Just Takes
by LeAnn Secord
aslight Village has evolved into a shopping destination for all of Grand Rapids. From boutiques and restaurants to spa and make-up services (and so much more), you will not just find retail therapy in this growing part of East Grand Rapids. Many of the businesses here happened to be owned and operated by women. Stop in and talk to any one of them and you will learn that they are women who are following a passion and doing so successfully.
Michele Fife – Seva Yoga After coming to terms with losing her job at age 41, Michele Fife embraced the situation as an opportunity to take a risk and follow her heart. Inspired to pursue her passion, Fife opened Seva Yoga in 2006 in Gaslight Village. To her, yoga is more than movement. It is a lifestyle. “Seva” itself means “selfless service” and Fife lives each day with that mantra in her heart. Fife explains. “We tend to limit ourselves in our lives and our perceptions,” she says. “Do those things that you want to do.” This way of thinking has proven fruitful. Seva Yoga is a viable business not only financially, but also in fulfilling Fife’s goal of living a “seva” life. Seva Yoga is expanding its space and will be moving to the lower level of its current building in December of this year. Fife is living her passion because she took a risk and refused to limit herself. Just speak to her and you will become inspired to do the same.
These wonderful ladies are the proprietors of successful shops and they are living out a dream while making their services and talents accessible to the community. The women that own these businesses are extremely supportive of one another and recognize the benefit of this camaraderie. They are active patrons of one another’s businesses and value the act of supporting and shopping local.
PK Mason – Papers Plus / Mason Jones Thirty-five years ago Papers Plus was started by PK Mason’s mother, Margy Jones, and a friend. Their vision was to create a business that hadn’t been done in the area yet and a paper store fit the bill. Papers Plus sells cards, invitations (custom, wedding, corporate, etc.), stationary, wrapping paper, and much more. Mason joined the family business in 1990 after a career in landscape architecture. Her talents and business savvy have assisted in the organization’s growth from 300 square feet to over 4,000 square feet. The “plus” in Papers Plus has proved a helpful catchall for the increasing amount of products and services you can find. Papers Plus has expanded to include Mason Jones, a store that offers furniture, tabletop settings and décor.
There is another similarity among this dynamic group. Each of them had to take a chance on an opportunity and risk failure to follow their goal of becoming their own boss. Driven by passion and a strong belief in what they have to offer, the women featured here are a few of the many living examples that proves hard work pays off, it just takes desire.
These sister stores offer high-end products at reasonable prices. They welcome and cater to customers that just stop in to buy a greeting card, to those seeking a thorough overhaul of their home décor. “We want everyone to have a relaxed feeling and not feel intimidated,” Mason explains. “Our focus is customer service.”
Canary Home Studio
Rhonda Solomon – Canary Home Studio After identifying a need to offer a personalized approach to design, Canary Home Studio was opened 2 years ago by Rhonda Solomon. Design has always been a passion of hers and owning her own business was always part of the plan. Persevering through the financial risks as well as the demands of time and energy, Solomon runs the only shop in Michigan that offers "to the trade" textiles eliminating the middle man and making the idea of interior design more accessible and less daunting.
photo by Daniel E. Johnson
photo by Daniel E. Johnson
Despite the challenges of juggling her business, a husband, and children, Jabara strives to be an example for all women. “I want to inspire them to follow their heart. You can be a wife, a mother, and still explore your own passions. Take a risk and challenge yourself.
Mia Walker – Smooch Beauty Boutique “It’s a big girl candy shop,” describes Mia Walker. Smooch Beauty Boutique offers cosmetics, manicures, pedicures, waxing, facials, air-brush tan, eyelash extensions, and soon, massage therapy. They even offer the popular Kiehl line of male skincare products. Smooch has something for everyone and every budget since “cosmetics are an accessory that everyone can afford.” Make-up and beauty should not be nerveracking. Smooch focuses on the quality of the relationships they have with their customers. They want guests to feel good about their visits and to see Smooch as a resource for skin care as well as cosmetics.
Canary Home Studio has a diverse range of clientele. Solomon’s intention is to break down design to make it something available to everyone. Pop in her shop and you cannot help but get caught up in the inspirationally participatory atmosphere. Her resource library is a prime example. The studio offers an extensive collection of design and textile books that can be borrowed and used as a source of inspiration for the seasoned or novice designer.
In addition to the challenge of balancing time and family, Walker sees her biggest and most continuous challenge as being able to stay ahead in the industry. From the latest in skin care and anti-aging products to the next big thing in make-up, Walker and her staff work to stay on top of what’s hot and what clients want. “It takes a lot of work and there is a lot of competition,” Walker adds, “but it is worth it. Have a vision for yourself and your business; stay challenged in the ways you want to be challenged.”
"As the face of East Grand Rapids is changing, so should interior design," says Solomon. And she is successfully accomplishing that. There is no project too big or too small. Solomon is thriving ahead of the curve, changing the interior design zeitgeist starting right here in Grand Rapids.
Each of these extraordinary women exudes enthusiasm about their respective businesses, but recognizes the integral role of making their business accessible to their clients and customers. Customer service is essential; being able to connect with a customer and assist them with a need makes all of the hard work and sacrifice worth it.
Women know the challenges of finding clothes that fit just right. We come in all shapes and sizes and Hot Mama offers fashion solutions for all of us. The Hot Mama name started in Minnesota and when Lisa Jabara moved to East Grand Rapids, she brought that name with her. With 22 locations throughout the Midwest, Hot Mama understands the needs of mothers and women. “Hot Mama has fashion for every woman no matter body type or lifestyle,” says Jabara.
photo by Daniel E. Johnson
Jabara owned a floral business back in Minnesota before embarking on the Hot Mama venture. Ready for new challenges, Jabara will be setting out on a new opportunity slated for 2012.
photo by Daniel E. Johnson
Lisa Jabara – Hot Mama
These women are balancing family. They are owners of successful (and growing) businesses. They are on the cutting edge of their industries. They value community. They support each other. They serve as inspirations to not only women, but anyone willing to take a risk. They are thriving examples that you can live your dreams. It takes hard work, energy, time and commitment. But most of all it takes desire. To learn more about the women entrepreneurs in Gaslight Village (yes, there are many more) visit http://www.egrgaslightvillage.com
Seva Yoga 9
Gifts Galore! Gifts that Give Hope Add color to your winter attire as well as provide a life of dignity and hope for the woman who makes them. These rose pins are knit by a trafficking survivor from the United States who now educates and counsels other young women. The WAR Chest Boutique carries a variety of products made or sold by women who have been rescued from slavery. $15 at WAR Chest Boutique. 119 Courtland Street, Rockford & 2790 44th Street SW, Wyoming. www.warinternational.com
Troll Beads With Troll Beads you can offer any woman the opportunity to celebrate the special moments in her life. Sure to warm the heart and bring a smile with personalized inspiration and exceptional style, Troll Beads offer a gift that can be added to for years to come. During December when you purchase a large clasp you’ll receive a free bracelet. Beads start at $28 at Right At Home/Urban Elements, 30 N. Main, Rockford. www.rightathomeinrockford.com
Vera Bradley Attaché Introducing Vera Bradley’s attaché laptop/briefcase bag in their newest pattern, Suzani. Shop Kimberly’s new Vera Bradley section for all of her favorite bags and accessories in bright, bold patterns that make a true fashion statement. Attaché. $88 at Kimberly’s Boutique 54 Courtland, Rockford.
ashion from the 30s and 40s has been flirted with for the past two years, and in 2012 the hollywood glamour of the 1940s will rule with a vengeance.
Emphasis is on the waste line and hourglass figures. Solid colors including blacks and vibrant reds are hot, along with bright Japanese inspired patterns. Shoes were made for dancing in the 40s. So, in 2012, you’ll again see dancing shoes with an adequate heel for swinging and swaying on the dance floor. Accessorize your ensemble with pearls, opera gloves, stockings with a seam up the back, a dainty clutch, and a scarf worn anywhere, including tied on the wrist or attached to your jacket with an oversized brooch. Bright red lipstick is a must. Hats are hip with styles including demure caps with a net veil, feminine fedoras, artsy berets and oversize brims. Top off your hat with a large flower, big brooch or flamboyant feather arrangement. Look for ‘40s inspired designs in Gucci, Prada, Mui Mui, Christian Dior and Valentino to dominate the runway. Red Ava Dress (shown to the left): As seen on reality star Kim Kardashian, “True Blood” actress Kristin Bauer. Julianne Barbari from “Good Day LA,” and in People Magazine, this Red Ava dress by Stop Staring! is made of an amazing red stretch nylon bengaline. The bodice is one armed with an asymmetrical neckline. Flattering pleats come down from the left shoulder continuing down to the right bodice side seam, very flattering on all figures. The pleats on the side bodice continue onto the skirt, perfectly camouflaging any tummy flaws, or undergarments. Very vintage and yet so modern. Availble in sizes small through 3X for $138. Red Ava Dress by Stop Staring!. Photo courtesy of www.20thcenturyfoxy.com
About Stop Staring! Established in 1997, Stop Staring! is the leader of original retro chic dresses and separates that flatter the figure and cater to a woman's independent spirit with timeless and classic styles at consistently affordable prices. Alicia Estrada, head designer and founder of the Stop Staring! collection, started sewing at the age of seventeen. With a house full of 3 brothers and 6 sisters, Estrada quickly forayed her hobby into a thriving business. In 2005, the Mayor of Los Angeles, Antonio Villaraigos, awarded Stop Staring! “Minority Manufacturing Firm of the Year.” Today, Estrada's love of all things vintage plays a key role in her design process. She continually incorporates the details of yesteryear into her beautiful and flattering retro-contemporary dresses and separates.
Pick up your FREE Grand Rapids Life Calendar
This beautiful calendar features photos taken by local photographers and reflects the beauty and style of faith in Grand Rapids. Calendars available at all Heritage Life Story Funeral Home locations. Stop by and get yours today!
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Katharine Hepburn “You have to be taught to be second class; you're not born that way.” – Lena Horne
“If you obey all the rules you miss all the fun.” – Katharine Hepburn
“I am just too much.” – Joan Crawford
“I’ve always loved a challenge.” – Lana Turner
simply stunning dresses Lana Turner
courtesy Very Fine dancing shoes
] taire d As at, e r F t re u [Abo he was g t e e r g u r S “ 't fo n o did d s ger but er Ro he did g in G g and ythin ever ards . . . w back heels!” h ig h es in Thav b -- Bo
dancing shoes 14
opera gloves December 2011
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The holiday season is a perfect time to share delicious and decadent family recipes with friends and relatives. This year, introduce them to new sweet homemade treats that are sure to quickly become holiday favorites.
Cinnamon Spiced Café Latte
Cinnamon Spiced Café Latte
Banana-Mango Bread Pudding with Coconut Caramel Sauce
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 5 minutes
Prep Time: 30 minutes Cook Time: 60 minutes
3/4 1 3 1
cup ground coffee teaspoon ground cinnamon cups cold water 14-ounce can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk Whipped cream, as desired Additional ground cinnamon
Stir together ground coffee and cinnamon. Brew coffee in coffee maker using 3 cups cold water. Pour sweetened condensed milk into large coffee pot or 1 1/2-quart pitcher. Add hot brewed coffee, stirring until thoroughly blended. Pour coffee mixture into café mugs. Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with additional cinnamon, if desired. Serve immediately.
Bread Pudding Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray 8 cups lightly packed 3/4-inch challah bread cubes 2 1/2 cups diced fresh mango (2 to 3 mangos) 2 medium bananas, halved lengthwise and sliced 4 large eggs, at room temperature 1 14-ounce can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk 1 9.6-ounce can mango nectar (about 1 1/4 cups) 1/2 cup milk 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Spiced Sour Cream 1 cup sour cream 1 tablespoon sugar 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger Coconut Caramel Sauce 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes, toasted Heat oven to 325°F. Coat 13 x 9-inch baking dish with no-stick cooking spray. To make bread pudding: Combine bread cubes, mango and bananas in large bowl. Whisk together eggs, sweetened condensed milk, mango nectar, milk, butter, vanilla, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg in medium bowl. Pour over bread mixture, stirring until thoroughly moistened. Let stand 30 minutes. (continued next page)
(continued from previous page) Pour into prepared baking dish. Bake 55 to 60 minutes or until set in center. Cool slightly in pan on wire rack. To make spiced sour cream: Stir sour cream, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and ginger until blended. To make coconut caramel sauce: Cook butter and sugar in small saucepan over medium-low heat 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Whisk in coconut milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 15 to 20 minutes or until slightly thickened. Remove from heat. Cover and keep warm. To toast coconut: Spread coconut on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave on high 2 to 4 minutes or until lightly toasted, tossing the coconut with a fork after each minute. To avoid overbrowning, remove from plate immediately. To serve: Spoon bread pudding into shallow serving bowls. Drizzle with coconut caramel sauce. Top with a dollop of spiced sour cream. Sprinkle with coconut. Serve immediately.
Banana-Mango Bread Pudding with Coconut Caramel Sauce
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Compiled by Bri Kilroy and Latesha Lipscomb illulstrations by Bri Kilroy
Gifts mean so much more when the gift fits the recipient to a tee, whether you’re Christmas shopping or looking for a present for a special day. Find her description here and you’ll discover a plethora of gift giving ideas to be found at LOCAL stores, that’ll warm her heart.
Here’s a woman who sees the world with an artistic eye. There are no limits to what can or can’t be a canvas. She’s inspired by nature, uniqueness, and culture, enjoys independent films that contain drama and romance, and listens to indie, tribal, and worldly music that isn’t found on standard radio stations. • A work done by her favorite local artist • A large frame that she can fill with her own creation • Tickets to Cirque de Noel • Scarves, earrings, and unique accessories that complement her artsy, bohemian style SHOP AT: Fruitbasket Flowerland, Frames Unlimited, Lafontsee Gallery, Schuler Books and Music
She may not own a vineyard, but she knows everything there is to know about good wines. Admiring and affectionate, she loves tasting the delicate flavors in each sip. She takes frequent trips to vineyards with her friends to stock up on her favorites and is never afraid to try the new tastes of the season. • Got Wine? T-shirt • Wine • Stemless Wine Glasses • Bar Divani “WIne Passport”
Join us on facebook and watch for giveaways on some of the items listed here.
When she’s not on Facebook or Twitter, downtown is her scene. She loves going out with friends and meeting new people. Her charismatic personality makes her a master at networking. She believes that fun is where the people are. • Gift card to favorite nightclub and/or restaurant • “Diane Warner’s Big Book of Parties” by Diane Warner • Artistry 3-D Shimmer powder • Leopard print iphone case SHOP AT: Kimberly’s Boutique, Uniquely Stranded, Bella Furs, Upscale Consignment Shops, L.Marie & Co.
SHOP AT: Art of the Table, John Russo’s WIne Warehouse & Deli, Martha’s Vineyard, D&W
Food is there to be enjoyed! Her kitchen is filled with cookbooks and handwritten notes that illustrate her past cooking adventures. She loves the Food Network and Travel Channel that expand her food loving horizons with their unique and delicious dishes. Her cupboards are stuffed with a variety of food that makes every aisle at the supermarket look scarce. She prefers local restaurants insisting that you can count on the food being better quality. • “How to be a Better Foodie” by Sudi Pigott or “The Official Foodie Handbook” by Ann Barr and Paul Levy • A Magic Bullet/Ninja (multi-purpose blender) • “Bake Pop” baking pan and accessory kit • “Chocolate Lovers” earrings by Hershey • Monica’s Gourmet cookies at D&W
This woman associates her car with status and keeps it clean, polished, and puts a lot of care into its preservation.
Her weekends are filled with volunteering and getting involved in organizations that tackle important issues. She’s passionate, strong, loyal, outgoing, and a believer in helping those in need. Nothing makes her tick more than injustice. She’s interested in emotional documentaries that raise awareness about social struggles going on in the world. • Donation in her name to one of her favorite local causes • “Behind the Mask: the story of people who risk everything to save animals” by Keith Mann, John Feldman, and Shannon Keith • Basket of organic, eco-friendly lotions • “The American Dream” (1989) or “Battle in Seattle” (2007) strong activist oriented films
SHOP AT: Star Collision CARSTAR (auto detailing packages). Southland Auto Wash
SHOP AT: UICA, Spirit Dreams, Literary Life, Global Gifts GR, The WAR Chest, Clothing Matters
SHOP AT: Bistro Bella Vita, Forest Hills Foods, Nourish Organic Market, San Chez, Green Well, Pietro’s, Grove, Olives. Twisted Rooster.
She’s the friend you call when your printer isn’t working. Blessed with a techeye, this woman is always sporting the latest gadgets of the technological trend. She’s a logical thinker with outstanding knowledge on how to operate the latest tech releases. Her iPod is full of techno and she watches shows like “The Big Bang Theory.” • Computer case/bag • Dual purpose flash drive • Universal Magic Charger
She believes the day hasn’t started until she’s broken a sweat. Selfmotivated, active, and healthy, she fills her week with various activities that let her push herself physically. Her playlist consists of upbeat, motivational jams that keep her moving through her various workouts and she barely has time to sit down before her energy leads her on another athletic journey. • Nalgene water bottle with flip-top making it easy to open with one hand and carry on the go. • Deo-geo deodorant and sweat stain remover • Reflector vest for her workouts in the dark • Pull-over hoodie • Sports sunglasses • Armpocket Sport arm band for your smart phone • EOS Holiday Lipbalm Collection
DIY Girl: Why pay for it when you can do it yourself? The DIY Girl is driven by her own capability. When her sink breaks, she needs nothing more than her wrench and the Internet to figure out how to fix it. She loves tinkering, taking things apart, putting them back together, and takes on a lot of DIY projects. Much of her inspiration comes from the DIY network, fabric and home improvement stores that allow her to creatively construct her passions. • Travel tool kit • DIY books and CDs • Work gloves • Carhardt for women SHOP AT: Rylee’s Ace Hardware; for when she can’t do it herself: Community Auto Repair, Nawara Bros. Appliance
SHOP AT: Gazelle Sports, Bill & Pauls
SHOP AT: CompuCraft, Norman’s Camera
Fun Lover: She loves going to
She clocks-in as soon as she wakes up. Suit ready and phone at her side, she’s a workaholic who thrives on challenges and overcoming obstacles. She’s smart, a quick-thinker, and a problem solver. She adores rewarding herself at the end of a successful workweek by putting her feet up and catching up on all the shows she has saved on her DVR. • Travel coffee thermos • Artistry Creme Luxury eye cream • Ergonomic chair • Fabulous business jacket • Gift card to local eateries • Small desk lamp for working into the wee hours
parties, events, shopping, enjoying the world around her, and has her inner-child in a constant embrace. Her favorite films are slapstick comedies that leave her in stitches with witty dialogue and outrageous adventures. Her music is always full of fresh upbeat tunes that instantly put her in the fun loving mood. She’s quirky, outgoing, loves to laugh and enjoy life. • Sock Monkey hat and mittens • Coola Natural Body Bars • Photo album so she can document all her favorite memories • Homemade goodie bag packed with fun things like Play Doh, box of crayons, travel toothbrush, fruit snacks, jump rope, quirky hair clips, and a gift card to a local ice cream parlor.
SHOP AT: Kimberly’s, L. Marie & Co., Groskopfs, StonesThrow/EQ3, D2 Design Quest
SHOP AT: The Mud Room, River City Improv, Circle Theatre, Witte Travel & Tours, Celebration Cinema, Michigan Rag
Book Worm: This woman reads...a lot. Her literacy hobby has made her insightful with a good vocabulary. She always provides in-depth conversation on topics and is a critical thinker. She enjoys nothing more than curling up into a cozy chair with a good book at the end of the day and is happy to let you look through her library for reading material with suggestions on what books are the best. She’s involved in book clubs, discussions, and frequently visits the library. • “Ask me about my book” T-shirt • Cozy throw from Wealthy at Charles • Reading light • Bookends SHOP AT: Literary Life Bookstore, Schuler Books, Papers Plus
Romantic: Not just for Valentines Day, this
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woman is compassionate, has a closeness to nature, and loves lovely songs and stories. She follows her heart and encourages others to do the same. Her confidence and caring attitude emits a loving atmosphere toward all things. She likes to travel and dine at fancy restaurants where she gets a chance to wear her favorite red dress. Bed and breakfast package Lakeshore soy-wax candles, fragrant room sprays and bath salts Custom jewelry Flowers
SHOP AT: Mary Ann’s Chocolates, Gina’s Boutique, Celebration Cinema, Brattains, Burgett, Eastern or Crescent Floral
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This woman is not restricted by anything and practices living life to the fullest everyday. Her “never give up” attitude keeps her motivated to chase her life’s desires. She loves to travel, challenge herself, and is always partaking in spontaneous adventures that lead her all over the map. empowering and inspirational attitude is contagious and motivates others to go after their own dreams. • Travel accessories from Penninsula Travel Gear • “1,000 Places to See Before you Die” by Patricia Schultz • Explosions in the Sky CD • Birds in Flight wall art • Therapedic International heated “mink” blanket SHOP AT: Literary Life Bookstore, Spirit Dreams, Penninsula Trading Company
Hobbyist: She finds fulfillment in little projects that result in a tangible sense of accomplishment. She enjoys shows like “Pawn Stars” and “Ancient Discoveries” on the History Channel because they reveal the hobby obsessions of other individuals. She gives unique homemade gifts and gets inspired by visiting craft fairs, hobby and art supply shops. • Sprinkles, sparkles, glitter and glue • Set of art brushes • Tweezerman winter wonderland nail rescue kit.
Environmentalist: Earthly and passionate, she’s a good caring person who loves nature and preserving the environment. Her transportation of choice is her bicycle and buys organic foods and environmentally friendly products. Her free and down-to-earth spirit is admired along with the volunteer hours she puts in to cleaning up parks and outdoor areas. • Gift basket full of organic soaps and lotions • Hempwear • “The Vegetarian Cookbook” by Nicola Graimes • Fair-trade organic chocolate or coffee • Membership to Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park
SHOP AT: Design Quest, (Focused Lighting), Flowerland, Rainbow Resources, T-Square
SHOP AT: Clothing Matters, Minty Keen, Global Infusion
The Juggler: School, work, volunteering, kids, friends, and a personal life? How does she handle it all? This woman has mastered multi-tasking and leads a constantly busy life. • Bubble bath, scented candle, wooden back massager, sleeping mask, and a Women’s Lifestyle magazine. • Spa gift card for a massage • Portable Make-Up-Matte • Guided imagery relaxation CD • Studio Z Go-Pocket • Baggalini organizing bag • Neck heat wrap • Personalized canvas tote bag • Yoga classes
Music Freak: From the Walkman to the portable CD player and now the iPod, this woman was born with headphones in her ears. She’s a walking music library and loves all kinds of tunes ranging from the top hits on the radio to local underground concerts. Her album collection includes vinyl and CDs and is stuffed with a variety of songs that fit any occasion and she begins her mornings with VH1’s “Jump Start Hour” where she will is introduced to new songs and videos by artists that she will add to her music library. • Recycled record bookends • Record coasters • Music on vinyl and CD • Authentic favorite band T-shirt SHOP AT: Beat Goes On, Schuler Books and Music, Dodds Records, Vertigo
SHOP AT: Right at Home, Spirit Dreams, Bottega Salon, Expressions of Grace, Holistic Care Approach
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by Rimple Nayyar
Q: What is Wine? A: Simply stated, wine is a natural process that turns sugars in juice into alcohol by yeasts. This process is called fermentation. Wine can be made from any fruit, although over 99% is made from grapes.
Q: Why is wine mostly made by fermenting grape juice? A: Almost all the grapes from the vine taste the same. Grapes, unlike other fruits, contain so many different flavor compounds that when fermented the juice is amazingly complex, offering a wide variety of flavors and textures. A cherry wine will for the most part taste like cherries. However, the chemical compounds in grapes can mimic various fruit flavors. Lucky for us!
Q: What are different categories of wine? A: Wine can essentially be divided into three broad categories – sparkling, still, and fortified. Sparkling wines have bubbles such as Champagne. Still wines have no bubbles such as Chardonnay, Cabernet, Merlot, etc. Fortified wines are made by addition of liquor, such as Ports.
Q: What are the different types of still wine? A: Wine can be white, red or rosé. The juice of the grape is white in color, except for a few varieties of grapes. White wine is made by pressing the grapes to allow the juice to run free. The juice is than fermented to produce wine. Red wine is made by allowing the skin of the grapes to stay in contact with the juice during fermentation. This allows the wine to absorb the skin color, hence giving wine the red color. In fact, white wine can be made from red grapes by removing the skin from the juice. Rosé wine is made by allowing the skin to stay in
contact with the juice for a shorter time – hours instead of days. This process gives the wine just a hint of color.
Q: What are tannins? A: Tannins are found mostly in red wines. Tannin is a compound present in grape skins, seeds and stems and is detected in the mouth as causing a drying sensation. This is the same feeling when drinking a very strong tea. Since most white wines are not fermented on their skins, they do not contain tannin. To understand the sensation of tannins, take a few grapes, peel the skin and eat it without the pulp. The dryness caused on your palate is from the tannins.
Q: What is dry and sweet wine? A: Fermentation converts sugar into alcohol. If fermentation is stopped before yeasts have consumed all the sugar, the sugar left behind is termed as residual sugar. Depending upon the sugar level, the wine can be classified as sweet or semi-sweet. Wines without residual sugar are said to be dry.
Q: Why is acidity so important in a wine? A: Acids make wine taste refreshing. They are most noticeable in crisp tasting whites, but are present in all wines to a varying degree. Low acid wines taste soft and smooth and can be pleasant to drink, but can also taste flabby with no backbone – akin to a pop that has gone flat. High acidity is perceived as a tanginess that makes your mouth water.
Q: What is the proper temperature to serve wine? A: The right temperature can mean a world of difference in how wines taste. We tend to drink our red wines too warm and our white wines too cold. White wines too cold
may be refreshing on a hot day but lose their nuances and can sometimes be nearly tasteless. Red wines served too warm will taste overly alcoholic and light. So as a rule of thumb, white wines should be served between 50 to 55 degrees and red wines between 60 to 65 degrees. To get the wines at the right temperature, follow the 20 minute rule – red wines in the refrigerator 20 minutes before serving, and white wines out of the refrigerator 20 minutes before serving.
Q: How long does a wine keep after it is opened? A: Air is a wines best friend and enemy. A little amount of air softens the wine and makes it pleasant to drink. However, the oxygen in the air also oxidizes the wine and turns it into vinegar. A wine bottle, if properly stored, can last 3 to 5 days, maybe even longer. Cork the bottle and lay it on its side in the refrigerator – don’t worry if it is a red wine. The lower temperature slows down the oxidation. You can take the red wine out of the refrigerator about half an hour before you want to drink it.
Q: To breathe or not to breathe? A: Many people will open a bottle of wine by pulling the cork and leaving it on the table to breathe for hours. The fact is you are wasting your time if you do not decant the wine. The thought behind removing the cork is to allow air in the wine to soften it up. However, it has been shown scientifically that the narrow opening of the bottle does nothing even in a 24 hour period. So if you want to let the wine breathe, open it and decant into a carafe or a decanter a few hours before drinking.
Q: Should I decant my wine? A: A wine is decanted for two reasons. First, allow air into the wine to soften it. Then second, to remove sediments. People usually decant older wines to remove the sediments. However, I lean against decanting old
wines. The window for an older wine is very small. As I mentioned, the air can be an enemy to the wine, especially in an older wine. If you decant an older wine to remove the sediments, make sure your friends are around so you can drink the wine before it falls apart. Most younger wines will benefit from a few hours of decanting, although not necessary since the wine should open up in your glass.
Q: Does wine get better the older it is? A: This is a big myth that wine gets better as it ages. Wine is the middle step of sugar conversion to vinegar. If left long enough, it will eventually turn into vinegar. In fact, there are only a very few wines that age well. The majority of the wines are meant to be drunk within 3 to 5 years of the vintage. However, wine does change as it ages. It may be fruity and tannic when it is young, but may take on some more austere characteristics as it ages and loses the fruitiness and the big tannic structure. Many people are disappointed when they taste older wines. By all means, have a small cellar to age the big California Cabernets and Bordeaux wines. But if you like the wines fresh and fruity, buy a few bottles, drink them up. After all, as one my friend said ‘so many wines and so little time.’
Q: Do legs indicate the quality of wine? A: This is another myth that needs to be put to bed. Legs, or as the French call them ‘tears’ do not indicate the quality of wine. It’s merely physics. As you swirl the wine, there is surface tension between the wine and glass that holds the liquid. However, as alcohol evaporates from the top, the gravity takes over, the surface tension is broken and water runs down the glass. Depending upon the impurities in the glass, the water can streak down that causes the legs or tears. This has no indication as to the quality of the wine. The legs will be more pronounced in higher alcohol wines or wines that have higher sugar content. So next time you are at a party and someone talks about legs, just smile and enjoy your wine.
Q: What is Champagne? A: Champagne is a sparkling wine that can only come from the region of Champagne, France. Any other sparkling wine cannot be called Champagne. Champagne is made from any combination of three grapes – Chardonnay (white grape), Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier (red grapes). The term Blanc de Blancs means white from white. A Blanc de Blancs is made from Chardonnay grape. The term Blanc de Noirs means white from red. A Blanc de Noirs is a white wine made from the red grapes.
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Visit www.womenslifestyle.com to see the video of Stormy’s rescue.
All in a day’s work: A promise beyond a local fireman’s duty
by Jennifer Wilson
he phone rings at Fire Station #5 located at Leonard Street and Monroe Avenue. A caller inquires, “Do you guys rescue cats from trees?” The firemen chuckle as the cliché resounds. The Grand Rapids Fire Department (GRFD) may or may not save felines falling from the heights of a maple tree, but they do indeed rescue kittens from storm drains. A passerby makes a distress call after hearing the frightened mewling of a trapped cat coming from the underground sewer system. “It could have been someone’s pet,” explains Women’s Lifestyle Magazine Publisher Victoria Upton. “Some little kid could have been home crying for their kitty.” Yes, our very own, Victoria Upton, was on the scene and called the authorities this past May. The GRFD rushed to the rescue. After assessing the situation firefighter Mike Malcolm pulled the sewer grate and was lowered down the drain head first, using a flashlight to locate the source of the cries. The kitten, being terrified by the bright lights and strange person, was hesitant to be set free from the 8-inch drainpipe. The lure of cat food was not incentive enough for the alarmed animal to budge. “Not for a second did we ever consider giving up,” boasts Malcolm. “There was no doubt we would free the kitten.” Firefighters were finally able to push the kitten out using a hose, where Malcolm, still head-first down a storm drain, was waiting to rescue the demure kitten.
photo by Two Eagles Marcus
“As soon as I had her in my hands, I knew it,” confesses Malcolm, “It was love at first sight.” Malcolm, who had recently found himself single and with a large home on the market, made the decision to keep the kitten. Entering the single life, Stormy was a surprising new chapter for the bachelor; a friendship fashioned.
Stormy and Michael at Home • Photos by Ruth Parbel
“The ins and outs of a 20-year commitment happened in 20 seconds in my mind,” admits the firefighter. Stormy fit right in at her new place, often cuddling with her hero. Although Malcolm found trying to sell the house with a very affectionate kitten roaming its space garnered more comments about the house-kitten rather than the house. Cats are known to be loners and somewhat aloof, however Stormy was quite a unique breed. Her craving for affection had her running to greet her new owner as soon as she heard the opening of the garage door. “She’s always happy to see me,” explains Malcolm. “It’s a nice welcome home.” The home finally sold and Malcolm and Stormy needed to find new digs. Labor Day weekend was one filled with anxiousness as Stormy found a new residence separate from her new-found friend; temporary, but still separate. Visitation rights were instituted until Malcolm could find a new permanent home for himself and his “rescue”. Stormy was in great care, of course, residing with several other cats at a friend’s home in Hudsonville. It wasn’t until the first week of November a reunion was had. Malcolm purchased a home sight unseen while out of town and move-in day was quite a celebration. He and Stormy reunited and the new house is well on its way to becoming a home – just in time for the holiday season. Scooped up and in the warm embrace of the firefighter, the plight of this unfortunate creature began to unfold. The filthy, sewer-damp kitten didn’t appear to have a home, not to mention being quite young to be prowling the streets and sewers of Grand Rapids. Now what? The tiny feline nuzzled Malcolm as the emergency scene began to settle down and media crews were packing up. What was going to happen to this little calico?
“I kept running scenarios in my head,” says Malcolm as he remembers back to the day of the emergency call. “I instantly thought of my kids. My daughter would love the kitten, but my son (who is away at college) is allergic to cats.” Malcolm stayed with the kitten, even naming her “Stormy.” Before it was time to return to Station #5, the smitten firefighter had decided to have his new acquaintance examined by a veterinarian and was seriously considering adoption.
“While Stormy and I were apart, I had forgotten how nice it was for her to run to the door to see me,” divulges Malcolm. “Some people say that dogs love unconditionally. Well, I think that’s true for cats too.” Whether it was fate that forged their friendship or it was circumstances that bonded them together, one may never know. However, Stormy found not only a hero but a friend as well that day in May. And Malcolm, well, it was all in a day’s work for this GRFD firefighter.
ONGOING Through December 3 Artists Wendy Gretzinger and John Knight will share their exquisite colored pencil works in an exhibit at the Wyoming Public Library Gallery. Free. For more info call 647-3980.
Through December 4 Broadway Grand Rapids presents Les Misérables at DeVos Performance Hall. Tickets start at $34.50 and may be purchased at the DeVos Place and Van Andel Arena box offices, Ticketmaster ticket centers, charge by phone at (800)745-3000.
Through December 10 Master Arts Theatre presents Rogers and Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music. $17. Call 455-1001 for reservations.
Wedekind. GRCC Spectrum Theatre. $24-$26 depending on section. Call 234-3946 for more info.
Through December 18 Civic Theatre Presents ‘The Wizard of Oz’ - This musical family favorite for all ages returns to the stage this holiday season reminding us that there truly is no place like home. Call 222-6650 for more info.
Annual FHPS Staff and Community Services Exhibit – Exhibit Runs December 1 – 15, Exhibit Hours: Monday - Friday from 9am - 5pm and is open and free to the public.
Through December 17 Actors’ Theatre Grand Rapids is proud to present the Grand Rapids premiere of Spring Awakening, a musical based on the controversial 1892 play by Frank
LaFontsee Galleries’ annual “Small Works by Enormously Talented Artists” is an exhibition of original works suitable for gift-giving. Everyone is welcome. Dress is Casual. Call 451-9820 for details.
Through December 23 Sleigh Bells & Holly: A gallery of fine art & gifts with almost 40 artists. 10am-6pm at LowellArts! Call 897-8545 for info.
Through December 30 Innovative photographer Sara Pearson will be exhibiting her work at the Grand Rapids Association of Realtors building.
Through December 31 Through December 15
Renaissance traditions that are seen in the Harry Potter books. The exhibition was developed and produced by the Exhibition Program at the National Library of Medicine. Call 988-5402, ext. 5438 for more info.
MyGR6 Creation Station display at the Grand Rapids Public Library. www.grpl.org.
Through January 6, 2012 Michigan landscape artist Mary E. Andersen will show her oil paintings of our state scenery at 4293 Rememberance Road. Call 647-3970 for more info.
Through January 8, 2012 Learn more about the many sides of Ben Franklin and discover his impact on your world in this electrifying new exhibit at the Gerald R. Ford presidential Museum. www.fordlibrarymuseum.gov.
Through January 15, 2012 BIG STUFF from the permanent collection at the Grand Rapids Public Museum: Guests will see an inspired selection of fan favorites on display for a limited time including unique vehicles, great beasts and significant inventions. Call 456-3977 for more info. Harry Potter’s World Exhibit at the Grand Rapids Public Library explores the
Warrington Colescott: Cabaret, Comedy & Satire exhibition at the Grand Rapids Art Museum. www.artmuseumgr.org.
Through January 31, 2012 The Grand Rapids Public Museum is looking for volunteers for the Streets of Old Grand Rapids exhibit. Complete
training and become a 1900s shop employee interpreter. Call 929-1753 for more info.
Through February 29, 2012 All Dressed Up-1950’s Style exhibit at the Grand Rapids Public Museum. www.grmuseum.org.
December 1 Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park: Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World Gala from 7-10pm. This special event features entertainment, cuisine from throughout the world and carriage rides through the illuminated sculpture park. Contact Margie Kindel at 975-3168 or email@example.com. Holiday Shop Hop:Special sales, treats, trolleys and fun! Get your holiday shopping finished, have fun doing it, and support your locally-owned businesses! 4pm – 9pm. Qi Gong Class - This free class teaches light breathing and stretching exercises to promote health and relaxation. Presented by Dr. Flynn. Natural Health Improvement Center. 6pm – 7pm. Successful Keys to Personal Well Being as a Business Owner - Dave Barrett will discuss 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and Jennifer Zumbrink will help participants understand health from a holistic perspective. $35 general public, $25 GROW Businesses. 6pm – 8:30pm.
Specializing in unique gifts, jewelry, natural aromatherapy and body products, meditation tools, candles, books, music, cards, incense and art with something for everyone.
Body | Mind | Soul Introducing Readers at Spirit Dreams
Karen Hays Psychic Reader
Marcia Camp Tarot Reader
Eugenia Marve Margaret Newman Vivan Love Kyle Psychic Reader Nickelsen Intuitive Angel Reader Psychic Reader
Available by appointment for half-hour ($40) or full-hour ($80) readings.
Call (616) 456-9889 to Schedule Spirit Dreams â€˘ 1430 Lake Drive SE â€˘ Grand Rapids, MI 49506 Mon-Fri 11 am to 6 pm | Wed till 7 pm | Sat 10 am to 5 pm | Sun noon to 3 pm
Discover new products, upcoming events and specials at www.spiritdreamsgr.com
Pre-registration is requested at www.GROWbusiness.org or 458-3404. Would you like to become a trained volunteer tutor? To learn more, please plan to attend this session at the Literacy Center. Call Nancy at 459-5151 ext. 10 to attend. 6:30pm – 7:30pm.
Interested in being green? We are working to promote easy and innvoative solutions to help your office or home be more earth friendly. All our products are made from plants and are free of toxins. When you’re finished, toss our products in your compost pile with your food waste. They will turn into plant nutrients for your soil! Contact us today: ThadCummings@ALSGreenSolutions.com Call: (248) 982.7024 • Visit: www.ALSGreenSolutions.com
December 1-2 HollyJolly shopping event and window competition. www.hollyjollygr.com
December 2 Yoga Nidra: Relax & De-stress Intentionally at Expressions of Grace Yoga. 6:30pm – 8:30pm. $20. Salsa Night - Come and dance and don’t worry if you can’t dance, this is the place to learn! Pietro’s Restaurant. 9pm – 2am. $8.
December 2 – 3 UICA 23rd Annual Holiday Artist’s Market. This event offers handmade art, jewelry and gifts created by 46 regional artists and artisans. Free admission.
December 3 D.A. Blodgett – St. John’s: The St. John’s Guild 47th Annual Holiday Party. Dinner, dancing and more at the B.O.B. Proceeds benefit the children in residential treatment on the St. John’s campus. Contact Meghan Bechtel at firstname.lastname@example.org or 361-4138. Grand Rapids Toy and Comic Expo. HSB Building. 9am - 3pm. $3, children 12 and under free. Call 281-5930 for more info.
December 4 The 15th (and final) A Winter’s Tune Concert at Weatlhy Theatre to benefit community radio station WYCE. Traditional and new songs for the winter holiday season performed by local artists. 2pm - 5:30pm at Wealthy Theatre. www.awinterstune.com GreyHeart Greyhound Rescue and Adoption Meet N Greet - An opportunity to meet and learn more about adopting a former racing greyhound. Petco. Noon – 4pm. Free for more information, please visit greyheart.org. Holiday Open House at the GRF Presidential Museum featuring a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, holiday music, and storytelling for children. Admission is free from 1pm to 5pm. Carol’s Ferals Adoption Hours. 2pm – 4pm. $75 for one or $100 for two cats. Email email@example.com for more info.
December 5 Rodan + Fields Product Launch/Business Presentation. Pearl Street Holiday Inn. 5:30pm – 7pm. katieschwarze.myrandf.com.
Intro to GROW - required first step for anyone eager to learn how start or expand their small business. GROW offices. Noon – 1pm. Free. Register at www.GROWbusiness.org. Jeff Dwarshuis to play at First Park Congregational Church. 12:15pm – 12:45pm. Free. AWE Sparkle Celebration - Join Alliance of Women Entrepreneurs as we celebrate a year of success for women entrepreneurs. Cascade Hills Country Club. 5pm – 7:30pm. $25-$30. For info call 949-0810x150. Sunshine MOPS meeting. Enjoy a yummy brunch and fellowship with other moms in the same season of motherhood. Sunshine Church. Contact Sally Bolthouse at 364-4242 x103 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
December 7 Lunch with Punch Networking - Pure networking where participants have the opportunity to present their business pitch and enjoy fun and interactive networking. Pearl Street Holiday Inn. 11:30am – 1pm. $5-$15. www.GROWbusiness.org. Carol’s Ferals Adoption Hours 6pm – 8pm.$75 for one or $100 for two cats. email@example.com. Would you like to become a trained volunteer tutor? To learn more, please plan to attend this session at the Literacy Center. Call Nancy at 459-5151 ext. 10 to attend. 6:30pm – 7:30pm. Taizé Sung Prayer Service. First UMC. 7pm – 8pm. Free and open to the public.
December 8 Grand Rapids Young Professionals Holiday Unwind. The Establishment. 5:30pm – 8:30 pm. Free and open to the public. Intro to GROW - required first step for anyone eager to learn how start or expand their small business. GROW offices. Noon – 1pm. Free. Register at www.GROWbusiness.org.
December 9 Salsa Night - Come and dance and don’t worry if you can’t dance, this is the place to learn! Pietro’s Restaurant. 9pm – 2am. $8. Fire of Transformation Yoga Practice at Expressions of Grace Yoga. 6:30pm – 8:30pm. $18. Call 361-8580 for more info. Gaither Christmas Homecoming - MultiGrammy Award winning recording artist, Bill Gaither, will present the Gaither Christmas Homecoming music spectacular at Van Andel Arena at 7pm. $29, $39. Call 742-6600 for more info.
December 6 Meanwhile Film Series: Pee Wee’s Big Adventure. Wealthy Theatre. 8pm - $5.
December 9 – 10
Forest Hills Central High presents ‘DISNEY’S CAMP ROCK!’ $5 per person. Call 493-8700 for more info.
Salsa Night - Come and dance and don’t worry if you can’t dance, this is the place to learn! Pietro’s Restaurant. 9pm – 2am. $8.
December 9-11 Grand Rapids Ballet presents The Nutcracker. Kickoff the holiday season with the most beloved ballet of all time. Order tickets by phone at 454-4771 ext 10.
December 10 Arthritis Foundation Jingle Bell Run at the MAC. 9am. Contact Samantha Mertis 248-649-2891, ext. 232 for more info.
December 11 Carol’s Ferals Adoption Hours. 2pm – 4pm. $75 for one or $100 for two cats. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
Trans-Siberian Orchestra at the Van Andel Arena. $62, $52, $42, & $32. 4pm & 8:30pm. Call (800) 745.3000 or online at ticketmaster.com. Dunking Down Cancer - Zeeland East vs. West Community for a Cure Basketball Game at Zeeland East High School. 6pm – 9pm. Hula Hoop Workshop at Expressions of Grace Yoga Studio. 6:30pm – 7:30pm. $15 includes hoop rental.
December 17 Fred Knapp Trio at First UMC. 6pm – 7pm. All are welcome. Free.
December 18 Carol’s Ferals Adoption Hours. 2pm – 4pm. $75 for one or $100 for two cats. Email email@example.com for more info.
December 12 Rodan + Fields Product Launch/Business Presentation. Pearl Street Holiday Inn. 5:30pm. Free. firstname.lastname@example.org.
December 13 Meanwhile Film Series: Pulp Fiction. Wealthy Theatre. 8pm - $5. Design 1 Fashion Event benefitting Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. JW Marriott Hotel. 7pm – 10pm. Hors d’ouevres and cash bar provided. Ticket info: email@example.com. Jeff Dwarshuis to play at First Park Congregational Church. 12:15pm – 12:45pm. Free.
Sunshine MOPS Meeting. Enjoy a yummy brunch and fellowship with other moms in the same season of motherhood. Sunshine Church. Contact Sally Bolthouse at 364-4242 x103 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Jeff Dwarshuis to play at First Park Congregational Church. 12:15pm – 12:45pm. Free. Start Smart 2 - Part 2 of a two-part course that focuses on business readiness. GROW offices. 6pm – 8:30 pm. $50 for two part course. Call 4583404 for more info.
December 14 Carol’s Ferals Adoption Hours 6pm – 8pm.$75 for one or $100 for two cats. email@example.com.
December 15 Meet Wendy Halperin at Literary Life Bookstore for a reading and signing of her beautifully illustrated children’s book PLANTING THE WILD GARDEN. 11am – noon. Free. Start Smart 1 - Part 1 of a two-part course that focuses on business readiness. GROW offices. 5pm – 8:30pm. $50 for two part course. Register at www.GROWbusiness.org or 458-3404.
Kids Storytime - Reading of at least two books for kids (recommended ages 1-9) and will host authors who will read from their work. Literary Life Bookstore. 11am – noon. Free. Lunch with Punch Networking - Pure networking where participants have the opportunity to present their business pitch and enjoy fun and interactive networking. Pearl Street Holiday Inn. 11:30am – 1pm. $5-$15. www.GROWbusiness.org.
21 – 23 GR Symphony Symphonic Boom: Cirque de Noël with Cirque de la Symphonie. Experience the magic of Christmas and the wonder of Cirque with this hit holiday production, back by popular demand! Visit www.grsymphony.org for ticketing info.
15 – 17 The ‘Don’t We Boys’ sketch comedy group at Dog Story Theatre. 8pm. $10/$8 online. Call 894-1252 for more info.
December 15 – 18 Grand Rapids Symphony Pops: Nestlè Gerber Holiday Pops. Relive the child-like joy of the holidays! This annual collage concert features traditional and popular favorites. www.grsymphony.org.
12th Annual WYCE Bubble Bash - a holiday celebration featuring sparkling wines from around the world. Crush at the BOB. 6:30pm – 9pm. $25.
Night at Your Museum - Become part of the unfolding drama as characters from the exhibits come to life! Grand Rapids Public Museum. 6pm – 9pm. $20. Call 456-3977 for more info.
Executive Series UpClose Workshop 3 expert panelists present on topic with roundtable discussion and Q & A to follow. $25 - $35. GROW office. Register at www.GROWbusiness.org or call 458-3404.
December 23 Salsa Night - Come and dance and don’t worry if you can’t dance, this is the place to learn! Pietro’s Restaurant. 9pm – 2am. $8.
Merry Christmas! December 27
December 30 Creating a Life of Contentment with Janice Lynne Lundy - A new “contentment principle and practices” are explored each month. Live monthly mentoring call with secure and private online community. 9am. $99. firstname.lastname@example.org. Salsa Night - Come and dance and don’t worry if you can’t dance, this is the place to learn! Pietro’s Restaurant. 9pm – 2am. $8.
December 31 Grand Rapids Symphony presents Motown’s Greatest Hits: I Hear a Symphony - Enjoy this night of music made famous by The Jackson 5, Smokey Robinson, The Temptations and still have plenty of time to enjoy the ball drop after the concert. DeVos Performance Hall. 7:30pm. Start at $18. Call 742-6500 for more info.
Meanwhile Film Series: Big Lebowski. Wealthy Theatre. 8pm - $5.
First Monday Mothers & More Chapter 137 meets at St. Thomas Catholic Church. 648-6988 or www.grmothersandmore.com. Mondays Breastfeeding Support Group at the Spartan Stores Family Childbirth Center. 252-7985. Women’s Co-Dependant Support Group meets at Kentwood Community Church. 455-1740. Tuesdays Domestic abuse survivors support group meets at 25 Sheldon Blvd SE. 451-2744. Second Tuesdays The National Organization for Women (NOW) meets at 629 Michigan St NE. 855-1526. Diabetes Support Group at the Metro Health Professional Building Conference room. 252-7985 or email@example.com. Second and Fourth Tuesdays MomsBloom Postpartum Depression Support group meets at Spartan Stores Family Childbirth Center. 252-7985 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Wednesdays The Mother-to-Mother Support Group meets at 10 am at 555 Midtowne St. NE, Suite 100. 977-5683 or www.babybelovedinc.com.
Russo & Amante Brand exclusively at John Russo’s Wine Warehouse & Deli
Third Wednesdays Progressive Women’s Alliance of West Michigan meets at the Women’s City Club. progressivewomensalliance.org. Thursdays Metro Moms Pregnancy Yoga at Metro Health Hospital, Level 2, Childbirth Conference Room. $5. www.metrogr.org.
Incredible prices, personal service, Italian groceries, desserts, deli meats & cheeses, beer & wine
4301 Kalamazoo SE at 44th Street SE Towne & Country Plaza
Group Meetings & Support Groups
Mon- Sat 10 am to 8 pm
First Thursdays The Zonta Club of Grand Rapids meets at Pietro’s Italian Restaurant. email@example.com. Third Thursdays Mothers & More hosts “Mum time: crafts, projects, crumpets, and tea.” 648-6988 or firstname.lastname@example.org. First Thursdays Free Caregiver Support Group for adult cancer caregivers, 7-8:30 pm, at the Bluebird Cancer Retreats office, 917 W. Savidge, Suite 36, in Spring Lake. (616) 847-0839. Third Thursdays Sexual assault/abuse survivors support group meets at 25 Sheldon Blvd SE. 459-7062 ext. 106. Daily Al-Anon/Alateen Family Groups. 774-1079 or grafg.org.
Submit events online at www.womenslifestyle.com
Gifts Galore! Guided Imagery CD If you can imagine it, you can do it. Designed to promote feelings of peace, calm, safety and support; reduce anxiety and stress; encourage hope, confidence, balance and optimism; the Healthy Journeys guided imagery series is designed to promote positive feelings and reduce negative thoughts. Available in a wide variety of topics for $17.98 each at Spirit Dreams • 1430 Lake Drive SE • Grand Rapids • www.spiritdreamsgr.com
Dazzling Candleholders (or vases) These dazzling candleholders or vases are available in two sizes and a variety of holiday designs that will add sparkle to any table or mantle. The perfect hostess or teacher gift. Large $14.95, small $7.95 at Wealthy at Charles • 738 Wealthy SE • Grand Rapids • www.wealthyatcharles.com
For Lovers of Coffee & Design Enjoy rich single-serve coffee and espresso at the push of a button – perfectly fresh every time. Created to please both Nespresso coffee drinkers and lovers of modern design, CITIZ represents the union of functionality and “retro-modern” design. Catering for all coffee preferences, the range of intuitive and user-friendly CITIZ machines epitomizes the expertise of Nespresso. Also available in red. $279 at D2 Design Quest • 4181 28th Street SE • Grand Rapids • www. DesignQuest.biz.
Lolë Katie Limited Edition Fur Hoodie Give cold weather a one-two punch with this Lolë Katie Limited Edition Fur Hoodie. The quilted three-quarter length jacket with center-front zip, stand-up collar and removable hood trimmed has detachable REAL fur. A durable, water-repellent coating seals out wind and moisture. Downglow 600 insulation envelopes you in luxurious warmth. Choose from black or gray, $320 at Gazelle Sports • www.gazellesports.com
Gifts Galore! Glass Hummingbird Hand-blown in Egypt, this glass hummingbird is as unique and precious as the women who flow through Women At Risk, International’s programs. When you purchase this ornament or others like it you are reaching into the lives of at-risk women and children, lifting them to dignity. $20 at the WAR Chest Boutique • 119 Courtland St • Rockford • www,warchestinternational.org
Cozy PJ Pants Girl Junk cozy pants may be the softest most comfortable pajama bottom ever! Moms love them because they are easy care machine wash and dry. Girls love their assorted bold and colorful prints. Sizes 5 to 16. $24.99 at Sassy Pants Boutique 51 E. Bridge St. • Rockford • www.sassypantsgirlsboutique.com
Cottage Treat for the Birds They’ll fly home for the holidays when they see this charming cottage in your yard. The pine birdhouse is covered with millet, safflower, canola, sunflower and gelatin - a tasty tidbit for your favorite backyard birds. $11.99 at Rylee’s Ace Hardware • 1234 Michigan SE • Grand Rapids • www.ryleeseace.com
One-of-a-kind Jewelry Creations Jewelry designer Daren Brattain certainly knows how to add sparkle to the holidays! Visit his studio for one-of-a-kind jewelry in gold, silver or platinum. Daren sets the standard for quality and workmanship on every piece he creates. Brattiain’s Jewelry Design Studio is located at 425 Standale Plaza NW • Walker • www.brattains.com
Tribal Brighton Kameleon Chamilia Curio not your daughter’s Jeans Viva Beads Keren Hart Natural Life
M-F 10-8 • Sat 10-6 • Sun 12-5
54 Courtland • Downtown Rockford • 866-6970
Everything Christmas One-of-a-kind Floral Designs Unique Gifts Vibrant Home Accessories Fun Jewelry Fine Furniture
North Main in Rockford (across from the Corner Bar)
(616) 866-7716 Holiday Hours: MWF : 10-5:30 • Tue-Thurs: 10-8 • Sat: 10-5 • Sun: 1-4
Be of Good Cheer, the Holiday is Here
Organizing Strategies to Maximize Your Joy
his time of year I am always busy helping a number of my clients prepare for the Holidays and year-end. It should be a time of joy for all; yet for many, it’s a time of panic. The following tips and insights may be helpful as you prepare for the final countdown to festivities and the New Year.
First and foremost, I learned early on from my family, friends and clients: “What you emotionally buy into, you mentally buy into (rationalize) and then you financially buy into.” Be conscious about your perceptions, choices and pocketbook. They have long term ramifications and they are the building blocks of how you organize your life, time, environment and finances. This is especially true regarding the “stuff” that fills our homes and closets. I believe it all comes down to clarity and balance. Typically we know this, but during the holidays (especially Christmas) we can lose our balance and get caught up in “buy”. Have you ever stood in line on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) at 5:00 in the morning to get the season’s latest got-to-have gifts? If you have clarity about what is really important to you and those you love, you can avoid over-committing, over-spending, and over-doing. Pre-planning, balance and being financially savvy are the major keys to success and emotional sanity throughout the holidays and all year long. I always start with lists. They make it easy to follow a process and ensure nothing is forgotten. They also cut down on impulse purchases. My working lists:
❑ Who is coming for meals and what they are bringing (or what you are taking). ❑ Gift recipients – family, friends, clients, service providers & unexpected drop-in’s. ❑ Actual gift items for those recipients - have a ❑ ❑
closet or stash place with extra gifts? Shop there first! Don’t over-do. Menus and ingredients you will need (don’t forget the beverages – punch, non-alcoholic, bubbly etc.). Plan your timing – when and where are you shopping. Even if you are shopping online, you need to have time for the free or standard shipping vs. paying extra for rush delivery or finding something out of stock and backordered.
Think about simplifying and reducing the cost of gift giving. It truly is about the relationships not the amount of stuff we give. Most of us need no more
new stuff. I see closets and drawers filled with unused gifts. I LOVE gift certificates and experiences because there is zero waste. Swim lessons, spa treatment, a house cleaning, golf, dinner, a movie out, babysitting etc. are great gifts that produce no clutter and help the local community. If members are financially struggling, consider doing a family name drawing so only one gift needs to be purchased. Also, if there are unemployed family members or friends tell them a gift of their time in helping set up or clean up or wrapping gifts would be the greatest gift of all. If you often overcommit to do things and disappoint people, stop over-promising. It leads to hurt feelings and reduced trust. Realistically assess what you can do and be upfront about it. Finally, take time to find your personal meaning to the season. You might also consider volunteering at
a local charity or church/synagogue in serving a meal or donating a gift to those in need. Volunteering and donating to the less fortunate can be a richly rewarding and humbling experience. It also teaches children a valuable lesson in caring for others. I always feel a richer impact of the season when I share and make a difference in another’s life.
Mary Dykstra MBA, CPO is a Certified Professional Organizer, speaker and time management coach. She is immediate past Director of Examination Development for the Board of Certified Professional Organizers and a current Industry Member Board Director of National Association of Professional Organizers. Her website is www.withinreach.biz.
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The Follow Up:
Saying Thanks and Keeping the Communication Lines Open by Kim Monaghan
ollowing up may make the biggest impact on career success. “Follow up” can mean many things, but in career language it’s defined as the effort you put forth by touching base after a meeting, keeping promises, saying “thanks,” and extending an offer to help.
Touching Base When the face-to-face meeting ends, communication must continue. An interview, conference, networking event, and lunch with a colleague all have mutually beneficial, action-focused momentum that only continues if you put forth the effort. By reaching out after an event, it will send a message to others that they matter and you are sincerely interested in fostering a long-term mutually beneficial relationship. Profitable results will stem from this ongoing communication via telephone conversations, emails, and further meetings. But, the ball is in your court to ensure “follow up” takes place. This includes post interview when you call to reinforce your sincere interest and inquire upon the decision making process, or touching base with a colleague or friend who is facing a challenge. Inquiring about their needs speaks volumes.
Offer to Help
Career-minded professionals not only talk the talk, but they walk the walk. In other words, they always follow up on promises made. This involves reaching out to those you were referred to and following through on all your meeting commitments. If you promised to arrange a personal introduction, then make the connection that very week. If your plans included project collaboration, then send over your ideas to get the creative process rolling. If you closed a meeting with “let’s get together again soon,” then fire off that meeting request right away. Keeping your promises is the only way to ensure others will grant you the same courtesy.
Asking how you might be of service to others not only paves the way for reconnecting, but provides the opportunity to demonstrate your talents and strengths. Through action-infused partnerships and contributions, professionals prove their worthiness for promotions and recommendations. Anyone can claim a strength or skill, but backing it up with follow up helps you stand apart from the competition. Moreover, doing for others is intrinsically rewarding and a meaningful way to demonstrate a strong work ethic and great interpersonal skills.
Saying Thank You Tomes are written on the importance of these two little words. Couple that with the simple fact that they speak volumes only drives home the point that sincere gratitude takes you far. Be certain to follow up every meeting with a “thank you” within 24 hours of the appointment. A spoken “thank you” means a lot, emails are great, handwritten notes are even better, and a unique thank you – a token or action of appreciation – is unforgettable. If someone paused from their busy schedule to give you their valuable time and attention, a “thank you” is warranted.
Kim Monaghan is a career coach, consultant and owner of Career Connections (www.cc-career.com). She is a member of the Professional Coaching Association of Michigan.
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Good As New Consignment Boutique
Rock Paper Scissors Consignment Boutique
5280 Northland Drive NE Mon-Fri 10-6, Sat 10-4 • (616) 363-6622
145 Diamond Ave. SE Mon 10-6 Tue -Thurs 10-7 Fri 10-6 Sat 10-4 (616) 805-6848
Featuring an emphasis on contemporary fashion. High-quality, affordable clothing for women, young men and girls. Beautiful new items arrive daily and consignors always welcome.
Lowell Flat River Cottage 317 East Main Street Mon 11-5, Tues-Sat 10-6 • (616) 897-8601 Eclectic mix of vintage and antique treasures. Beautiful one-of-a-kind custom painted furniture and accessories. Pieces to make a house a home. www.flatrivercottage.com.
Night Forest Jewelry Located inside Flat River Cottage 317 East Main Mon 11-5, Tues-Sat 10-6 • (616) 897-8601
omen direct over 83% of the health care for their families. In our January edition you can connect with our readers on a personal level by letting them know who you are and how you can enhance or improve their lives.
Your promotional piece includes a photo and your biography in an attractive eye catching layout. Space is limited. Call today or email us to reserve your space or for more information.
Phone: (616) 458-2121 Email: email@example.com
Treasure hunting has never been so rewarding as it is when you shop Night Forest and their delightful mix of vintage and new jewelry pieces. In addition to beautiful jewelry you’ll find new tops, scarves and handbags to complete your look.
Holland Priscilla's Boutique 12719 Riley Street, Suite 80 Mon-Fri 10-6 Sat 10-4 • (616) 738-0083 Look like you spent a million bucks without spending a million bucks at Priscilla's. Our women's upscale consignment store features new designer clothing. Junior, Missy and Plus sizes available. We also carry new purses, fabulous jewelry, sunglasses and sunglass readers.
Priscilla's Boutique 444 Washington Ave Tues-Fri 10-5 Sat 10-4 • (616) 796-1220
450 E. Division Rockford, MI (616) 863 8491
Look like you spent a million bucks without spending a million bucks at Priscilla’s. Our women's upscale consignment store features new designer clothing. Junior, Missy and Plus sizes available. We also carry new purses, fabulous jewelry, sunglasses and sunglass readers.
It's all fun, fresh and trendy at this women's resale boutique. A fantastic selection of clothing, shoes and accessories from all the best labels at a fraction of retail prices. New arrivals daily. Earn up to 50% of the selling price for your excellent in-season pieces. Check out www.rpsgr.com to learn how.
Lost & Found Treasures of Old & New 455 Century Ave SW Mon-Sat 10-6 Sun 12-5 • (616) 732-3401 Visit this fabulous store filled with incredible treasures to experience how much fun shopping here is. Expanded to 5000 sq. feet and brimming with furniture, accessories and décor and more. Also, estate sales, auctions, buyers of gold/silver. Enjoy our Old Town Flea Market Thursday evenings this summer. Dealer space available.
Rockford Gild the Lily 450 East Division Mon-Fri 10-7, Sat 10-4 • (616) 863-8491 Two floors of fresh fashion for your home & body at “get it now” prices. Formal wear, plus, petite and designer departments. Nominated 2010 Rockford Retail Store of the Year. www.shopgildthelily.com
Wyoming Priscilla's Boutique 5751 Byron Center Ave SW Mon-Fri 10-6 Sat 10-4 • (616) 301-0062 Look like you spent a million bucks without spending a million bucks at Priscilla's. Our women's upscale consignment store features new designer clothing. Junior, Missy and Plus sizes available. We also carry new purses, fabulous jewelry, sunglasses and sunglass readers.
Kent CIty The Crow Palace 52 S. Main, Ste. C Tues & Thurs 10-4:30 & Sat 10-1 (616) 799-1976
Fresh fashion for your home and body... Eco Chic Consigment Boutique
High-quality, affordable mix of new, vintage and antique finds. We feature fine antique furniture as well as local art and collect unusual bits of everything from vintage jewelry to African art; all for your browsing enjoyment.
by Janice Lynne Lundy A legacy is a gift and one that is thoughtfully offered. A legacy holds our intentions of wanting to be remembered, as well as for remembering others who have played an important role in our lives. This holiday season, I invite you to partake in “Gifts of Legacy,” ways that you can get in touch with the true meaning of the holidays – generosity, togetherness, joy – and create more of it for generations to come.
Photographs Take plenty of them, make copies, and share them with those you love. Purchase inexpensive picture frames and gift them right along with the picture. This makes it easier for the recipient to enjoy them immediately. To see portraits of our loved ones as we pass by a desk or bookcase can warm the heart all year long.
Food Everyone loves holiday treats and none better than those created by beloved relatives. In our house, it was Grandma M’s special peanut butter cookies, complete with criss-crossed fork prints. Last Christmas, I made tins of cookies for my own children. They said this was their favorite gift. Food conveys love and care, creating delicious memories for us all. Consider sharing family favorites on recipe cards attached to your gifts too.
Decorations Upcycle or hand-down holiday decorations. As children, we hold onto holiday memories through things – a mechanical reindeer, a special basket filled with treats, a precious tablecloth. When my maternal grandmother passed away, I hoped I’d get to keep some of her Christmas tree ornaments. I did, and each year as I place them upon our tree, I think of her legacy of love.
like singing carols or going to church or temple. Family favorites I’m hoping to revive this year? Taking a family walk after the Thanksgiving meal and playing board games.
New Memories Do something novel. Take a family poll and see what new ideas your loved ones might have for a happy holiday. Create index cards that say: “Something I’ve always wanted to do on Thanksgiving (or Hanukkah or Christmas).” Gather your results and have fun doing something different. Perhaps a new legacy will be created!
Personalized Gifts As time becomes a premium, everyone appreciates a homemade gift. A visit to your local craft store can dish up dozens of ideas of quick, easy, and inexpensive things to make: tree ornaments, beaded jewelry, decorated picture frames. A person’s name thoughtfully placed on the gift itself speaks volumes of love and can become a treasured keepsake.
Togetherness In the busyness of our days, it’s easy to fly solo and get things done in a hurry. Linger awhile and do something special with your loved ones: a festive lunch, an outdoor light display drive, a holiday concert. Being together is all it’s made out to be and it’s what memories are made of.
Consider the meaningful things you did with your grandparents or parents and recreate them for your own children. Resurrect a lost tradition
Offer your services (and those of your family) to folks who need it most: young mothers, the elderly, the poor or homeless. It’s difficult for
Terri’s Window Treatments
Be fully present, not distracted, when you are with others during the holidays. Listen, support, encourage. Your full attention may be the greatest gift you can give anyone. Did you know that a national survey recently revealed that 25% of people feel that they have no one they can talk to? Your presence is a unique present in a world that moves too quickly and rarely offers personal attention.
Kindness No matter which holidays you celebrate – or who you celebrate them with – I hope you will create plenty of new memories laced with patience, generosity, and kindness. Mother Teresa once said, “We can do no great things, only small things with great love.” Your personal legacy of love is well worth leaving, one kind gesture at a time.
Join Jan Lundy’s monthly teleclass series, “Spiritual Invitations.” Learn more at her website, www.awakenedliving.com.
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others to ask for assistance so volunteer yours. Pick one new recipient of your time and attention. Make holiday cards for residents of nursing homes or soldiers away from home. Donate your time at a local food bank or soup kitchen. Babysit for an overwhelmed mom. Clean house or run errands for an elderly neighbor. Gestures of care are never out of fashion.
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Girls: Sizes Preemie to 12 Boys: Sizes Preemie to 7 Baby & Children’s Accessories Gift Registry Free Gift Wrapping
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Gift Cards & Certificates Wondering what to give the gift recipient on your list that seemingly has everything? Many of our wonderful advertisers feature gift cards for your convenience. Gift cards don’t take up much space, are easy to wrap and offer the benefit of allowing the lucky recipient the chance to enjoy a product or service that fits their needs and schedule. You could also leave this list as a hint for something special for yourself . . .
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Looking for a special much appreciated gift for your coworkers? Give them “The Works” with a holiday gift certificate from CarStar. The Works package includes a complete hand car wash, windows cleaned inside and out, carpet vacuumed, dash and console cleaned and protected, and wheels power washed for $25 per certificate. While you’re there, check out the Complete Star Shine Superior Package which includes interior detail, buff and wax exterior detail and 12 hand car washes (all for $195). –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Featuring the finest in skincare products and procedures, Elite Plastic Surgery will personalize any gift certificate to the needs of your grateful recipient. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Pietro’s 2780 Birchcrest Drive Southeast Grand Rapids, MI 49506-5477 (616) 452-7488 The popular “Dinner and a Movie” packages are available at Pietros’ again this year. For $38.95 you can purchase a $25 gift card and 2 movie passes. Gift cards for dinner only are also available. As a bonus, with every $25 gift card you purchase, you’ll receive a $5 gift giver card for yourself. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Jupiter Medical Aesthetics 6290 Jupiter Ave. Suite D Belmont, MI 49306 616-301-2503 www.jupitermedicalaesthetics.com Give a gift that will nourish, treat and refresh winter skin. Our pumpkin microdermabrasion spa facial features enzymatic pumpkin, combined with the power of medical microdermabrasion, to give skin an instant wow. With Jupiter Medical Aesthetics you’ll be giving the finest in skincare, with a personalized touch.
Gentle Touch Professional Electrolysis, LLC 3427 Salerno Dr NE Grand Rapids, MI 49525 616-447-9393 www.AGentleTouch.net The gift of beauty is available through gift certificates from Gentle Touch. Permanent makeup for eyeliner, eyebrows and full lips makes a wonderful gift for busy moms and women with sight issues. We also feature facial peels for healthy happy skin and smiles from your gift recipients. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Bengtson Center for Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery 555 MidTowne St, NE Suite 110 Grand Rapids, MI 49503 616-588-8880 www.bengtsoncenter.com Spread a little holiday magic with a gift card from The Bengtson Center. Now through the end of December take advantage of our “Give a Gift, Get a Gift” gift card promotion. Purchase any denomination gift card and receive an additional 10% in Bengtson Bucks to be used on one of the many services offered at the Bengtson Center. Everyone deserves something special under the tree this year! Some exclusions apply.
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the concept is fun. Little listeners will begin to anticipate what will come next and will be in for some delightful surprises as the fabric gets smaller and smaller.
It’s Time To Play Outside, 101 ways for your young child to enjoy independent fun under the sun
by Alexandra Fix
The Wilder Life, My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House on the Prairie By Wendy McClure Riverhead Books, 2011, $25.95 If there is a grown-up Laura Ingalls Wilder fan on your holiday shopping list, run don’t walk to get this book. It’s worth every penny to a fan. Wendy McClure digs into the fact and fiction of the Little House on the Prairie book series and its author. Visiting the cabins, churning butter, standing in a sod house, dipping her toes in Plum Creek, checking out the Nellie Oleson look-alikes and gazing at Pa’s fiddle are all part of “the Laura experience,” as McClure calls it. This author separates her infatuation with the experience from the reality of the pioneer life. With spirited enthusiasm, sincere honesty and an eager spirit, McClure travels back to the Laura time and brings us right along with her. This is truly my favorite book this year!
In Stitches, A Memoir By Anthony Youn M.D. With Alan Eisenstock Gallery Books, 2011, $25.00 Growing up in Greenville, Michigan, Anthony Youn is about the only KoreanAmerican kid in town and a selfproclaimed “nerd” on top of that. His goal in life, urged on by his parents, is to become a doctor like his dad. It’s the thing to do and he ultimately does it well. Currently a practicing plastic surgeon in the metro-Detroit area, Youn shares the story of his journey through medical school at Michigan State University and into the world of professional healthcare with wit, compassion and sincerity. Readers will laugh long and hard over some of the episodes and shed a tear or two along the way. A favorite guest on the Rachel Ray Show, Youn may already be familiar to readers.
Hanukkah Stories By Nancy Rips Frederick Fell, 2011, $16.95 The celebration of Hanukkah is a time of family and friends, faith and tradition. The Jewish holiday commemorates a surprising military victory over an enemy and the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem thousands of years ago. With only enough oil left for one night, a miracle happened and the eternal lamp in the Temple sanctuary remained lit for eight days. Hanukkah Stories is filled with anecdotes, passages, simple quotes and thoughtful sentiments about the holiday. Many of the writers recount their own personal Hanukkah miracles in reminiscences that have been passed from person to person, home to home and generation to generation. Some are delightfully humorous; others are serious and emotional. Last but not least, there are some absolutely wonderful latke recipes, for that very traditional potato pancake served during this season.
For & About Young Readers on Your Holiday List: I Had a Favorite Dress By Boni Ashburn Pictures by Julia Denos Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2011, $16.95 Have any crafter moms with little girls on your shopping list? This is a very cute story about a little girl who outgrows her favorite dress. Mom pulls out the fabric shears, the sewing machine and her creativity and makes something else of it. Days move on and once again a new item is outgrown and another sweet little clothes miracle happens, over and over again. The illustrations are absolutely darling and
By Miska L. Rysnburger AuthorHouse, 2011, $13.99 This refreshing parent aid is NOT about playing outside every minute with your child, but rather about encouraging your son’s or daughter’s wonderful big imagination to grow through independent outdoor play. “Anything and everything a child needs for play can be found in both nature and by what is inspired in the young child’s mind.” Miska Rysnburger has delightful ideas for any season to get kids going. Give a five minute start, to plant the seed of an idea, then let them go. When those famous words, “I’m bored,” pop out of a child’s mouth over the holiday break, your gift recipient will be prepared. Did you know that you can make bubbles that will freeze outside? Ever thought about little snow people? Are you ready for some snow painting? Also included in the winter outdoor play are activities like snow princesses and soldiers, snowflake catchers and outdoor restaurant. If snow’s not in your forecast, there are tons of year-round ideas to stimulate a child’s natural creativity. Rynsburger, mother of three, has a background in elementary education and makes her home in Holland, Michigan.
Symphony City Written and Illustrated by Amy Martin McSweeney’s McMullens, 2011, $17.95 While taking the subway downtown to a concert, the little girl in this story gets separated from her parent, but continues her path toward the music spot. Along the way, she discovers the magic of music and movement everywhere in her world—on street corners and in the rain, across rooftops and down from windows, under the stars and safely back in her own home again. The illustrations are crisp, bold and intriguing. Little listeners can look for the nineteen cats (each with a name), identify the musical instruments and dance with the ballerinas. The book’s not finished until you take off the cleverly folded book jacket and truly enjoy Amy Martin’s graphic design skills. Marketed as a children’s book, grown-ups who find joy in design will appreciate the look of this sophisticated picture book. Martin grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, attended the University of Michigan School of Art and Design and now makes her home in Portland, Oregon.
Alexandra Fix is the author of ten nonfiction children’s books, including the series Reduce, Reuse, Recycle (Heinemann Library). Over the years, she has truly enjoyed being a children’s librarian, registered nurse, freelance writer, mother and grandmother.
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Dos and Don’ts for Exchanging Gifts with Coworkers
hen among the masses shopping for holiday gifts, consumers might want to take a close look at the expressions on their fellow shoppers’ faces. Note the ones whose eyes are glazed over, who are anxiously biting their bottom lips or seem to be exhibiting recurring facial twitches. These are not individuals on the verge of a nervous breakdown. In fact, many are otherwise well adjusted people in the throes of choosing holiday gifts for their coworkers or bosses.
While there is nothing inherently complicated about choosing tokens of appreciation for one’s associates or superiors, the challenge is not just choosing the right token, but in choosing something without the potential to offend or confuse the recipient. To help make the process go smoothly from purchase to presentation, here are some of the chief do’s and don’ts for office gift-giving.
Do: ❑ Make sure that you know your company’s policy on gift-giving. For example, are there specified or unstated spending limits? ❑ Be clear about who should be on your gift list. Do you get gifts for everyone ❑ ❑ ❑
in your department or just those individuals with whom you interact most frequently? Choose thoughtful and tasteful gifts, whether buying a different item for each person or the same item for all. Consider gifts that can be used in the office, such as distinctive office supplies, a photo frame, gadget, calendar, or pen. Go for gifts that can be shared either at home or work, such as gourmet food items, books or plants. Take the time to package and wrap gifts with care.
Don’t: ❑ Overspend, especially when purchasing a gift for your boss. ❑ Give presents to colleagues outside of your “gift circle” in order to make a good impression or curry favor. ❑ Choose “joke” or “gag” gifts, even for coworkers you think you know well. ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑
While the recipient might appreciate the gesture, it could be misinterpreted by others. Re-gift or give items that are used or in anything but pristine condition. Give gifts that can be misconstrued as having a hidden meaning or agenda, such as flowers (especially roses), cash, lingerie, or personal hygiene products. Stray outside the limits of “good taste.” In other words, don’t even think about gifts that could be considered too personal (including clothing, perfume or jewelry) or are in any way political, religious, racial, or sexual. Unless you are absolutely certain of the recipient’s tastes and habits, steer clear of alcoholic beverages of any kind. Leave anyone out. Hurt feelings are hard to overcome and can strain otherwise productive working relationships.
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