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LIFESTYLE

Teri Turner: Superb Summer Food Selections

Teri Turner: Superb Summer Food Selections

Everyday foods made with love, inspiration, and packed with health-enhancing goodness. A scoop of love, a dash of seasoning, and a whole lot of creativity — those are Terri Turner’s favorite ingredients. She adds this heartfelt concoction to every one of her thousands of recipes, like cheesy tomato chickpea pasta, Greek lemon chicken, and sizzling shrimp lettuce wraps. There is no doubt that Turner is a woman about her food. As a food and lifestyle blogger and creator of No Crumbs Left, a blog featuring healthy recipes and products, she is one of those few people who manages to make a living doing what they love the most. Turner is known for her healthy, everyday recipes. She believes good food brings people together. “I live for the moments when people realize all they need is food that’s good for them and actually tastes good,” she said. Turner cooks from the bottom of her heart and her more than 800,000 social media fans appreciate it. “I try to give people the best food options,” she said. Those options can be found
Celebrate With Some Unusual Thanksgiving Day Traditions

Celebrate With Some Unusual Thanksgiving Day Traditions

A national holiday is celebrated in as many ways as there are households in America. The quintessential Thanksgiving Day celebration is perhaps best portrayed as Norman Rockwell envisioned in his painting, Freedom from Want. Roasted turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and all the fixings are served as families gather around the dinner table, ready to give thanks and feast. Many American families celebrate this time-honored tradition, but some have added new twists in celebrating the big day. Sometimes, the wackier the tradition, the more memorable the holiday. Frozen Turkey Bowling While many people settle in to watch football on Thanksgiving Day, others flex their muscles in preparation for turkey bowling. A frozen turkey and unopened plastic bottles of soda serve as a bowling ball and bowling pins. Sometimes, actual bowling pins are used. The frozen bird is flung onto smooth supermarket aisles, slick ice, or slippery sheets of painter’s plastic. Derrick Johnson, a grocery clerk at a Newport Beach Lucky supermarket, laid claim to the idea in 1988. He saw a store manager slide a frozen turkey across the floor that accidentally
Cranberry Harvest: Ocean Spray’s Fruits of Labor

Cranberry Harvest: Ocean Spray’s Fruits of Labor

The world’s largest cranberry grower preserves generations of cranberry family farming. The air is crisp, fall is in full swing as trees turn their colors, and cranberry bogs have peaked for harvest. These edible little gems will be served up as sauce, jelly, juice, or fresh in just about every American household this holiday season. It takes a lot of berries to do that, about 80 million pounds worth, and there’s one brand up to the task to handle that. Ocean Spray is the world’s number one producer of cranberry products, selling two-thirds of the world’s supply. The small bright red wetland fruit was first harvested by Native Americans inhabiting the New England area for making medicines, dyes, and pemmican, a nutritious, concentrated blend of dried venison, tallow, and tart cranberries shaped into patties. Dutch and German settlers first called the fruit “crane berry” because the blossom resembled a crane’s head and bill. The humble cranberry most likely made an appearance at the first Thanksgiving feast in 1621. In colonial times, people enjoyed cranberries in sauces, tarts, and preserves. In
Pedego Electric Bikes

Pedego Electric Bikes

A love of cycling and dislike of hills prompted the co-founding of Pedego Electric Bikes. In 2008, Don DiCostanzo and Terry Sherry were at lunch talking about what they wanted to do with the rest of their lives. They were both 50-something serial entrepreneurs who were in between ventures. Best friends since college, they loved cycling but hated hills. They loved the concept of electric bikes but hadn’t found a really great electric bike. Despite having no bicycle industry experience, they decided to create their own. Over lunch, they designed their first bike on a napkin. The first Pedego electric cruiser bike was designed with a nostalgic look reminiscent of 1950s beach cruisers. Overcoming Challenge #1: Manufacturing in China Manufacturing challenges included persuading big-name bicycle components companies to allow Pedego to use their parts. Most were unfamiliar with electric bikes and were reluctant, but DiCostanzo was highly persuasive. Another challenge was finding the perfect factory in China to manufacture the bicycles, eventually they found one. Overcoming Challenge #2: Distributing Electric Bikes In 2009, the first Pedego Comfort Cruiser bikes rolled
Microbiome Health

Microbiome Health

If you are like me, the word “microbiome” was largely unknown 5-10 years ago. Fast forward to 2020 and people approach me at dinner parties with questions like “my trainer said I need to eat more krauts for my microbiome, what do you think?” (eat ’em). But what exactly is the microbiome and is a vegan diet healthy for it? The microbiome refers to the large mass of microbes, bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites, that live on us and in us. While there is a microbiome of the skin, the genitalia, and the mouth, most of the conversation on the bugs that live with us from birth to death is focused on the GI tract, affectionately known as the gut. We can carry up to 4-5 lbs (2 kg) of microbes in our gut that represent a mass about as large as our livers. Within the tens of trillions of micro-organisms that live there are at least 1,000 species of bacteria consisting of over 3 million genes. What’s more, two-thirds of the gut microbiome—the population of microbes in the intestine—is
Salad Days of Summer

Salad Days of Summer

Discover the origins of some of America’s most beloved salads. The long days of summer are here, and with it comes hot steamy weather and a yearning to cool off. Heavy meals give way to lighter ones and salads with all their fixings rule the day. Sink your teeth into a crisp Caesar Salad or taste the tang of cool coleslaw or chunky Cobb salad. Whatever your preference, salad makes the perfect main course or accompaniment to your favorite meals. Here, we’ll explore some of the classics with histories most people may not know. Caesar Salad Hail Caesar for what could be America’s top salad choice. The origin of Caeser salad began in of all places, Tijuana, Mexico. Credited with its creation was Caesar Cardini, an Italian chef who lived in San Diego, California, and worked at his restaurant in Tijuana to avoid U.S. prohibition restrictions. His daughter recounted that the salad was invented on July 4th, 1924, when there was a big rush for food and supplies ran low. Using what he had, Cardini wowed his guests by preparing
Wow the Home Chef  with Cool Kitchen Gadgets

Wow the Home Chef with Cool Kitchen Gadgets

Every great cook needs quality tools of the trade, here’s a list of genius kitchen gadgets for the home kitchen. Choosing what to get for the chef in your life who already has everything can be difficult. Using stylish, functional, innovative tools can make culinary craft even more enjoyable for the home chef. To help you out, we’ve put together a list of kitchen gadgets fit for a professional that will inspire creativity in the kitchen. Molecular Gastronomy Kit For the truly adventurous chef, here’s something that will tantalize their inspiration. Molecule-R’s Cuisine R-Evolution makes molecular gastronomy accessible, fun, and easy for anyone. The do-it-yourself kit is fully loaded with everything needed to experiment molecular techniques at home. Take culinary art to the next level and experiment with mixology, styling, and flavoring. Turn any occasion into an elevated event. The kit comes with 20 sachets of food additives, a silicon mold, and three pipettes. Playing with food has never been this fun! Check it out on the Molecule-R website or get it on Amazon. Breville Joule Sous Vide This little
Monthly Gift Clubs: Goodies that Keep Coming All Year Long

Monthly Gift Clubs: Goodies that Keep Coming All Year Long

With a gift club, there’s something for everyone, every taste, every personality, every month! Whew, you made it through the holidays. After all the holiday preparations, entertaining, gift-giving, festivities, and feasting, you or someone you know deserves a pat on the back for a job well done. And there’s no better way to accomplish that than being treated to a special surprise every month. Make it something really special like fine wines, wellness boosts, beauty samples, or grooming goodies, there’s so much to choose from. We’ve put together a list of some of the most popular and unique men’s and women’s monthly and quarterly gift clubs for your perusal. Go ahead, enjoy surprises all year long! The Wordy Traveler Perfect for the traveler who reads and loves tea. Every quarter a seasonal collection box of curated travel-related goodies is shipped. Receive a book, a limited-edition fine art print, ethically-sourced free trade organic tea, and a special gift —all relating to a specific region. This quarterly subscription has an added bonus: every box provides education for an underprivileged woman or girl
Coffee Lovers Gift Guide: In Pursuit of the Perfect Cup

Coffee Lovers Gift Guide: In Pursuit of the Perfect Cup

Make gift-giving a smooth brewed experience for you and the impassioned coffee lover in your life. “Love is in the air, and it smells like coffee.” – Unknown Thinking of giving another coffee mug as a gift to a coffee connoisseur? How about surprising them with high quality must-haves that will wow the most experienced barista or novice. We’ve listed some unique finds for every taste – coffee on the go, cold brew, pour-over, French-press style, iced, and more. Take a look at these hot items that are highly rated by users. Wacaco Nanopresso If your coffee lover is always on the go, they can still quench their craving for an espresso anytime, anywhere with the Wacaco Nanopresso. This handy instant espresso machine delivers a powerful 261 psi of stable pressure to extract every bit of flavor and aroma from finely ground coffee beans. Using single-handed power, it takes less effort than other models to produce a fine 2.7 fluid ounce size brew with a dense crema layer. It’s an elegant personal pocket-size wonder to use anywhere you are. Get
Diane Latiker: Chicago South Side’s Founder Of “Kids Off The Block” (KOB)

Diane Latiker: Chicago South Side’s Founder Of “Kids Off The Block” (KOB)

Chicago South Side’s Ms. Diane opens her heart and home for at-risk youths to realize their potential. A Memorial Like No Other Another stone is placed on a memorial wall in Roseland, a neighborhood in Chicago. Bearing a name and date, the stone is carefully and lovingly displayed among the other 800 stones that have been collecting there since 2007. The wall is a sad testament of young lives cut short by the barrel of a gun. Worse yet, the wall has been rebuilt 15 times since 2007, and is over 400 stones behind! Diane Latiker, a community activist and founder of Kids Off the Block (KOB), set up the memorial wanting to shock “her community and the youth she served,”  KOB is a non-profit started in 2003 in Roseland, one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Chicago, where walking home from school could mean dodging a gauntlet of bullets. Even Latiker is not immune to her neighborhood’s violence. Her own van was found shot up by gangs. On another occasion, she says she found herself between two guns with
Haben Girma: A Champion of Disability Inclusion as Part of Diversity

Haben Girma: A Champion of Disability Inclusion as Part of Diversity

From refugee to Harvard grad: She champions inclusion and dignity for people with disabilities.  We Are All Able The word “disability” usually comes with a negative connotation. It seems to deny the fact that there are people of all shapes, sizes, and skills that require judgement-free social services. Today, sadly, it seems that the differences that make our world colorful, unique, and progressive can also be a cause for isolation for many people. But Haben Girma, a deaf-blind Harvard scholar, is living proof that we are all able to complete grand missions no matter our abilities if we have the courage in our hearts and the support of our communities.  Girma is a public speaker and disability rights advocate with international fame. She aims to have inclusive practices for people with disabilities in every aspect of our daily lives. And she believes that technology can level the playing field.  She’s a lawyer, activist, and author who has been named a White House Champion of Change by President Barack Obama, spoken at national conferences, and gave a lecture on accessible design
Estella Mims Pyfrom And Her Brilliant Bus For Underprivileged Kids

Estella Mims Pyfrom And Her Brilliant Bus For Underprivileged Kids

Underprivileged kids take charge of their destiny on a magical mobile learning lab. Magic School Bus  In today’s digital age, information is everywhere. This has made for a more informed general public, but some poor and rural locations have fallen behind due to a lack of resources. That’s why Estella Pyfrom, an 82-year-old activist and educator from Quincy, Florida, is giving those who need it an “education on wheels.” Her ‘magic school bus’ established a movement to make education accessible to all. The Brilliant Bus is a non-profit, designed to help both underprivileged children and adults access education, modern technology, and educational resources no matter where they live. The project is helping to eliminate the digital divide in communities and has been featured during a Microsoft Super Bowl commercial, in O, The Oprah Magazine, and was a recipient of Toyota’s Standing O-vation award. Pyfrom was also named a CNN Top 10 Hero. You can watch her hero story here… Retirement Redefined When most people retire, they usually spend their savings on traveling, moving to a different country, or satisfying their
Grand Hotels from Florida’s Gilded Age

Grand Hotels from Florida’s Gilded Age

Industrial tycoons and visionaries transformed Florida’s frontier into luxurious playgrounds for the rich. If you build it, they will come. That’s precisely what happened with a handful of visionaries during the Gilded Age of the late 19th century and Florida’s land boom from 1920 to 1925. Men who contributed to the building of modern America, embarked on their own missions to draw the leisurely wealthy of the frozen north to exotic sub-tropical playgrounds in Florida. During the late 19th century, while the wheels of industry turned and economic prosperity grew in northern states, Florida was still a backwater with some populated areas carved out of its mangroves and swampland. These visionaries saw Florida’s pristine beaches and balmy breezes as a golden opportunity to build tourist destinations for the rich and famous. Build it they did, and the tourists came. Today, snowbirds continue their seasonal migration to Florida’s sunny shores. Some enjoy stays at grand hotels, iconic symbols of Florida’s past. They remind us of a more genteel time when railroads and tourism began to flourish. The groundwork laid, Florida transformed
Ker & Downey: Return to Kenya’s Wild

Ker & Downey: Return to Kenya’s Wild

So you’re ready to travel again but don’t know where to start? Start here, with three of Ker & Downey’s favorite private Kenyan safari homes. Do you find yourself watching tv and thinking to yourself, “They are standing too close together.” Or, “What are they doing in such a crowded space?” After months spent social distancing, we are going to have to learn how to be in genuine community again. As we start to travel again, the last thing you probably want to do is surround yourself with a group of strangers. Luckily that has never been Ker & Downey’s modus operandi. Our philosophy on travel has always been private, fully customized travel that reflects who you are from start to finish. We aren’t going to book you onto a bus tour that hits the well-worn tourist highlights with a bunch of people you’ve never met. Instead, we seek out authentic experiences you won’t find on Trip Advisor. We prefer small, boutique-style properties that specialize in attention to detail and specialized service. Private Kenyan Safari Homes That’s where these three
Ancient Wonders of California

Ancient Wonders of California

Connect with the distant past by exploring early civilizations and ancient natural wonders in the Golden State. California has a lot to offer tourists. Many make their way to see glitzy Hollywood, scenic Pacific Coastal Highway, surfer waves in Santa Cruz, San Francisco cable cars, or picturesque Napa Valley. But California also offers tourists a chance to see some of the most ancient wonders in the Americas. The Cerutti Mastodon Discovery Researchers have made a stunning discovery that could rewrite human history. They found signs of human activity dating around 130,000 years ago at the Cerutti mastodon site in San Diego, making it the oldest archeological site in the Americas. The discovery predates previously known human activity by 100,000 years. Although no human bones were found, a mastodon skeleton, molars, tusks, bone flakes, and large stones were found, indicating the site was used as a bone quarry. Mastodon bones were smashed to extract marrow or were used as raw materials for making tools. Learn more about this exciting discovery and museum hours at the San Diego Natural History Museum. Petrified

Mental Health

Microbiome Health

Microbiome Health

If you are like me, the word “microbiome” was largely unknown 5-10 years ago. Fast forward to 2020 and people approach me at dinner parties with questions like “my trainer said I need to eat more krauts for my microbiome, what do you think?” (eat ’em). But what exactly is the microbiome and is a vegan diet healthy for it? The microbiome refers to the large mass of microbes, bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites, that live on us and in us. While there is a microbiome of the skin, the genitalia, and the mouth, most of the conversation on the bugs that live with us from birth to death is focused on the GI tract, affectionately known as the gut. We can carry up to 4-5 lbs (2 kg) of microbes in our gut that represent a mass about as large as our livers. Within the tens of trillions of micro-organisms that live there are at least 1,000 species of bacteria consisting of over 3 million genes. What’s more, two-thirds of the gut microbiome—the population of microbes in the intestine—is
The Importance Of Sleep

The Importance Of Sleep

Modern life has disconnected us from our sleep — here are some ways to fix it. After studying sleep for 10 years as a PhD in Cognitive Psychology, I’ve seen this disconnect first hand. People should understand and talk about their sleep like we talk about our diet and exercise. But we live in a society that admires the sleep-deprived workaholic and disregards the fully rested and more thoughtful among us. It can be hard to focus on our sleep health, so I’ve compiled 10 main takeaways from my decade in the sleep world. Hopefully these tips will help you improve the quality of your sleep, your health, and your overall well-being. 1) Don’t underestimate the Circadian Component. People generally have an idea about how much sleep they need (called the homeostatic component of sleep). For example, I know I need about 8 hours. But people often know little about their individual internal 24-hour clock, aka the circadian rhythm. Here’s what you need to know. Everyone has a 24-hour cycle that is impacted by this weird German word called zeitgebers.
Social Interaction Extends Your Life

Social Interaction Extends Your Life

Surprising science-based evidence shows face-to-face contact matters more to your health, happiness, and longevity than you might think. Developmental psychologist and awarding-winning journalist and columnist, Susan Pinker, suggests our social interactions directly impact our survival. She has poured over stacks of studies involving large populations, and her findings reveal social integration cultivates immunity and resilience within us. She illuminates us with her observations in her latest internationally acclaimed book, The Village Effect detailing how face-to-face contact makes us healthier, happier, and smarter. She explores how in-the-flesh encounters and forming tight bonds with families, friends, and communities harbor a unique effect on our mental and physical health. “Neglecting to keep in close contact with people who are important to you is at least as dangerous to your health as a pack-¬a-¬day cigarette habit, hypertension, or obesity,” she writes. Keen Observer of Modern Life Pinker has spent over two decades in clinical practice and teaching psychology after earning a BA degree from McGill University and a MASc degree from the University of Waterloo. Her weekly column, “Mind and Matter,” focuses on advances
4ocean is “Changing the Tide on Ocean Pollution”

4ocean is “Changing the Tide on Ocean Pollution”

Two entrepreneurs are effectively eradicating plastic pollution by creating the first economy for ocean plastic. Facing a Tidal Wave of Plastic For Andrew Cooper and Alex Schulze, it was the surfing trip of a lifetime when the two recent college grads went to Bali to enjoy big waves and exotic beaches. Once there, they were taken aback at all the trash piled up along the shore, spoiling their dream vacation. A local lifeguard told them the beach had been cleaned earlier in the day and what they saw washed ashore within the past few hours. Their trip of a lifetime turned into a long-term commitment to clean the oceans of plastic waste. “When you spend that much time on the water you really have an affinity for the ocean and an appreciation for it,” Schulze says to CNBC Make It. Cooper and Schulze both grew up with a love of surfing, boating, fishing, and sandy beaches. The two met at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida, and became friends. As they looked into the problem of plastic waste, they
Randy Hetrick: The Man Behind TRX Empowerment

Randy Hetrick: The Man Behind TRX Empowerment

Not long ago, in celebration of “the most inspiring, insightful, inventive risk-takers of 2017,” Entrepreneur Magazine featured a piece titled “50 Most Daring Entrepreneurs.” By my perusal, the list was a provocative mix of exceedingly influential business leaders, all hyper-busy changing their worlds for the better from whatever is their chosen vocation. Some were early stage in their project’s development, others well along, and several others were global (and beyond) titans of industry. Their various pursuits were across the map and included: social media startups, media entertainment giants, various software applications, marketers, restaurateurs, coffee shop moguls, national and international retailers, alternative energy applications, rocket ships to outer space, etc.. And then there was a fitness guy on the list named Randy Hetrick, being acknowledged for the exercise equipment and training systems he’s developed called ‘TRX.’ Interesting. I wondered why this young man and his exercise gear should be considered amongst so illustrious a group of world shakers? We were wise enough to ask and Hetrick was generous enough to carve out some time to answer. In truth, he gave us
Leading The Agritech Revolution

Leading The Agritech Revolution

Mother Nature and high-tech combine forces to urbanize sustainable food for the masses. When a former investment banker and IT geek does a career 180 uprooting himself from a comfortable lifestyle in Tokyo to live in squalor among China’s hutongs, one might cock their head and ask why. But only if you don’t know the back story of visionary Stuart Oda would you question his motives. This second-generation Japanese-American has dedicated his life and career to a cause quite far from his training. He’s helping to solve world hunger both now and in the future. An International Childhood Oda was born in Colorado, surrounded by the majestic Rocky Mountains. Growing up bilingual didn’t hurt his future one bit and came in handy while attending high school in Singapore. He returned to the U.S. to attend UCLA, where he studied political science, nurturing his initial intentions to become a lawyer and eventually work at the State Department. Upon graduation, he needed a job, and Merrill Lynch Tokyo was the only one to give him a call back in his job search.
Folds of Honor: Giving Back to America’s Fallen Heroes

Folds of Honor: Giving Back to America’s Fallen Heroes

By heeding to a higher call, one man’s mission is helping to ensure no family is left behind on the field of battle. Honoring our fallen military heroes is the least we can do for their ultimate sacrifice. But so often, their valor has been overlooked as we fully engage in the very freedom they fought to protect. Defenders of our liberties, many leave behind families who not only suffer the loss of their loved one but have an uncertain future ahead of them. In 2007, Major Dan Rooney sought to change this indifferent attitude and help military families when he founded the Folds of Honor Foundation. The non-profit provides scholarships to spouses and children of severely disabled veterans or those killed in action. The organization creates a legacy for the fallen, helping to ensure the continuing education of the loved ones they left behind. A Light in the Darkness To know the impact the organization is having is to hear the stories of Folds of Honor families. At a time of devastation, Folds of Honor helps bring closure for
Nikon Small World: The Tiny World of Microphotography

Nikon Small World: The Tiny World of Microphotography

Super-resolution microscopic photography brings never-before-seen images to public view. Discovering magnificence in photographs so detailed, we are swayed to think the subjects are otherworldly. Microscopic wonders abound all around us, dazzling us with their surreal beauty when captured on film. They appear as extraterrestrial landscapes, fantastical creatures, intricate patterns, and strange structures. What the public cannot see with the naked eye, individuals using super-resolution microphotography are bringing to light. Recently, Nikon Instruments announced the winners of the forty-sixth annual Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. Since 1974, the annual competition has been open to anyone interested in photography, including scientists, artists, and hobbyists. This year’s judging panel consisted of scientists, journalists, and photographers who selected twenty winning images based on the best combination of originality, informational content, technical proficiency, and visual impact. First Place Winner The top prize was awarded to Daniel Castranova, assisted by Bakary Samasa, as they worked in Dr. Brant Weinstein’s laboratory at the National Institutes of Health. The winning entry of a full-bodied juvenile zebrafish was artfully rendered and a technically immaculate photograph. The zebrafish, suspended in
The Exquisite and Exotic Wood Carvings of Bali

The Exquisite and Exotic Wood Carvings of Bali

Artisans are preserving their cultural tradition of wood carving on the Island of the Gods. Turning blocks of wood into intricate sculptures is a classic art form in Bali. Known as the Island of the Gods because of the preponderance of Balinese Hinduism in daily day life and architecture, Bali became the center of traditional Hindu-Javanese wood carving. Early wood carvings always portrayed religious themes, and later were intertwined with everyday life, turning a cultural heritage into a distinctive art form. Crafting a Tradition Prior to the 20th century, Balinese wood carvings were not intended for decorative home use as they are today. These hand-carved creations were mainly used in ceremonies, temples, and palaces. Ceremonial figurines depicting deities and masks were made to ward off evil spirits. Balinese wood carving started about the 11th century with Buddhist and Hindu influences. It wasn’t until the 14th century that it flourished along with painting, gold and silversmithing, and stone carving by artisans of the Majapahit Kingdom, of which Bali was a colony. During this period, Hindu influence prevailed and continued the tradition

ENCORE

Jake Hanrahan: Irregular Warfare

As audiences turn from mainstream news reporting, independent journalism is gaining in popularity and trust. Riveting stories of conflicts and crime on the world stage are brought to us by journalists who accept the risk of putting themselves in harms way. They do it to get the story behind today’s headlines so the rest of us can know what’s actually happening in the world. One such independent journalist is Jake Hanrahan of the UK, who brings us stories from some of the world’s most dangerous hotspots. His firsthand reporting also covers the underworld of organized crime, exposes extremist political views, and dives into conspiracy theories. Take a look at his showreel to see what takes to get the story… Journalistic Integrity at Stake In an interview with Defiance, Hanrahan shares his view on why audiences are becoming distrustful of mainstream news, “Because a lot of people are getting sick of what they’re seeing every day. It’s not just kooky people. Normal people now, everybody is just going like, ‘Hang on, I’m sick of this. I’m sick of being told what

April Braswell: Breaking the Ice with People

Getting into a Conversation Comfortably, Confidently, and Casually When the Holiday season is in full swing, this is a particularly easy time of year to break the ice with people every day of the week. Whatever the time of year or season, there is often a seasonal event or occasion upon which you can lean to assist you in how you break the ice with people who are complete strangers. This can assist you whether you’re a single looking to date and get more comfortable and socially skilled or a new sales person needing to sell items, services, or just yourself as a professional. Developing your ease and agility for breaking the ice with people stands you in good stead in all social and business professional interpersonal situations. Whether you’re a single hoping to get the cute guy to ask for your number or a get the beautiful woman to talk to you and give you her phone number when you ask for it, or possibly a sales man or woman looking to make more selling connections, many people want

Stanford Thompson: Creating Social Harmony

By his example, he’s helping the under-served through the power of music. Change the Tune For Stanford Thompson, music is more than notes and pitches. He believes, like many others, that music can heal broken communities, uplift downtrodden children, and make Philadelphia a better place. Unlike others, Thompson is a world-renowned trumpet player who uses his musical talent for social justice initiatives. His art is undeniable, he’s performed solos with Ocean City Pops Orchestra, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and the North Springs Philharmonic, and traveled as far China, Czech Republic, Germany, Kenya, and Austria playing his tunes. But to Thompson, the sweetest sound doesn’t come from his trumpet, it comes from helping those in need. His organization, Play On Philly, pairs world-class musicians with students who are struggling academically due to life circumstances. He shares his results about the life-changing effects of music and remains committed to the arts through his many leadership positions on the board of the Marian Anderson Award, American Composers Forum, and the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance. Due to his commitment to social justice through music,

Anastassia Elias: Heart for Art

A thing of beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Artists like Anastassia Elias make our world come to life. Their ingenuity, resourcefulness and clever outlook allow us to see beyond the norm. Elias pushes artistic boundaries by using often overlooked materials and turning them into masterful artistry. “I often take what others don’t see and turn it into something that everyone can connect to,” she says. Elias is a Paris-based digital artist, illustrator, and innovative do-it-yourself (DIY) designer, residing in Landerneau, a small town in the western part of France (Brittany) near Brest, who uses precise techniques to inspire free thinking and bring attention to important global issues. Her mediums include painting, paper collages, ink, photos, fiber, drawings, and recycled materials. Thanks to her unique outlook, her artwork has been featured in exhibits all over the world, including the National Museum of Singapore, the Portuguese Film Festival, and in Milan, Italy. She’s on a Roll We’ve all heard the phrase, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” but Elias knows this all too well. As an artist, illustrator,

Jonna Mendez: Veil of Spies

Risking it all to turn the odds to America’s favor. If I told you the Soviet Union fell with the help of glued-on facial hair and commuter dummies would you believe me? Well, probably not. But if a former CIA master of disguise told you it was true, you would. Seemingly innocuous things like wigs and ink pens were essential parts of the CIA’s ingenious toolkit for protecting assets who gave us vital information, consequently protecting millions of American lives. Tools like this were invented out of necessity during the Cold War, and Jonna Mendez, former Master of Disguise at the CIA, was the Mother of Invention. All-American Girl Mendez was born in Campbellsville, Kentucky to a family whose roots in the county were six generations deep. The plucky blonde no doubt learned the ways of the hills as all Kentucky children do; how to make something from nothing and fashion what you need with what’s on hand. Skills like these would come in very handy in her career. She graduated high school in Wichita, Kansas, attended nearby Wichita State,

Jim Ziolkowski: Building the Human Spirit

One brick at a time, his labor of love empowers lives and communities through education. A man with a wonderful soul wrote a book about walking in the shoes of the less fortunate. If you took a walk in Jim Ziolkowski’s shoes not only would they be covered in dust from foreign lands, they’d make your heart swell with love for your fellow man. In his book, Walk in Their Shoes, he poses the question: can one person change the world? In his life he’s already proven it. Heartland Upbringing Ziolkowski grew up like millions of other kind souls in the heartland of America. Raised in Jackson, Michigan, he enjoyed the peaceful life of small town U.S.A. and all the charming trappings associated with it. Attending Church with his parents was a big part of that wonderful childhood. His faith, deeply embedded in his consciousness, would affect not only his life but the fates of thousands. College Grad with a Conscience After graduating from college, Ziolkowski traveled the world, but not like your typical Eurorail backpacker. After hitchhiking around Europe