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011915FEATUREAnita Altman of the UJA-Federation of New York in Manhattan wanted to create a national ReelAbilities Film Festival to help raise awareness of the common humanity and value of each person, regardless of his or her disability. That’s when she founded the ReelAbilities Film Festival.

The idea for a film festival was developed when Altman saw a film called “Praying with Lior” about a young man who has Down syndrome and how he prepared for a bar mitzvah. From there, she wanted the film festival to highlight moves that impact change while helping to expand and transform programming for people with disabilities.

The ReelAbilities Film Festival was founded in 2007 in New York City. Since then, the film festival has spread to 12 U.S. cities, including Cincinnati. In fact, Cincinnati’s ReelAbilities Film Festival launched in 2013 as the first city outside of New York to host the event. Today, it hosts the second largest festival nationwide, behind only New York.

In 2014, the festival’s national headquarters moved to the Queen City. It’s managed by the nonprofit Living Arrangements for Developmentally Disabled (LADD), Inc. For those who have never attended the film festival, all of the films screened during the event share the stories, lives and art of people who have disabilities.

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According to Festival Co-Chair and Accommodation Committee Chair Kara Ayers, PhD., the Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival expects thousands of people to participate in the eight-day event that runs from February 27 to March 7. Presented by Macy’s, the region’s largest film festival includes a Premier Weekend Corporate Awards Luncheon, Red Carpet Gala and Gala Afterparty as well as more than 30 film screenings, speaking and other events for VIPs. “Each of our film screening events is hosted by and will benefit a local nonprofit organization whose work enriches the lives of people with disabilities,” says Ayers.

 

At this year’s Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival, Oscar and Golden Globe Award Winning Actress Marlee Matlin will be the keynote speaker at the Corporate Awards Luncheon. Also in attendance will be respected actors Danny Woodburn, Daryl Chill Mitchell and Kurt Yaeger in addition to Richard Bernstein, the country’s first state Supreme Court Justice who is blind. Project Runway’s Justin LeBlanc and internationally acclaimed photographer Rick Guidotti of Positive Exposure will also be at the film festival as well as many who are featured in or part of the films will attend the Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival.

Now that the Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival is entering its third year, the event has grown more than four times in size, according to Ayers. “We have accomplished this because of how our entire region has supported our cause,” Ayers adds. “We have succeeded at bringing together government, academia, the business and arts community as well as social service to celebrate our region’s diversity and our shared humanity.”

The mission and message is resonating within the business community, too, says Ayers. “The region’s top employers are recognizing the importance of diversity and inclusion in recruiting and retaining strong workforces,” she adds.

In addition to these accomplishments, the Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival is bringing nationally- and internationally-recognized Hollywood stars who want to come to Cincinnati and participate in the festivities. The national festival has grown so much this year that there were more than 500 films submitted from across the world to be juried for awards.

The Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival will be held in several locations throughout the Cincinnati area. “Our Premier Weekend Corporate Awards Luncheon and Red Carpet Gala will be held at the Hyatt Regency in downtown,” says Ayers. “We will be holding film screenings at the Cincinnati Art Museum, Kenwood and Esquire Theatres, Cincinnati Museum Center, Great American Ball Park, Taylor High School and the Contemporary Arts Center.”

VIP guests are also invited to participate in a variety of speaking and other engagements that will take place throughout the city.

To see a list of nonprofit agencies benefiting from the film festival, click here. To learn more about the ReelAbilties Film Festival, visit the website at www.cincyra.org. Here you can learn more about the events, watch Film Festival trailers, register to volunteer and purchase tickets. You can also follow along on Facebook Twitter and join in the conversation using the hashtag #DifferentLikeYou.

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010515CAREER2You don’t get a second chance for a first impression. That’s why Anne Schmidt is so passionate about her work.

As the founder and owner of Blu Design Shop, she helps start-ups and small businesses – locally and nationally – with their branding and graphic design needs. “We offer fully customized brand identities that accommodate a start-ups budget,” explains Schmidt, “and allows them to get up and running quickly.”

Schmidt’s love and enthusiasm for design is initially why she launched her business. “I started my career at a marketing firm in Washington D.C., where part of my responsibilities involved creative design for marketing and grassroots advocacy projects,” she explains, “From there, I dabbled in recruiting and HR, but I really wanted to get back into designing.”

A few years prior to her company launching, Schmidt created her very own wedding invitations, pregnancy announcements for her children and birthday cards. Requests for custom stationery from friends and family soon followed, and then referrals from that business.

010515CAREER
Anne Schmidt, founder and owner of Blu Design Shop

In 2009, a California based photographer discovered Schmidt’s website that she created for her line of custom stationery. “The photographer loved my work so much that she asked if I would be willing to create a logo and website for her, and the rest is history,” Schmidt says, “I fell in love and became obsessed with creating logos and web designs, and I began learning as much as I could about the design industry.”

Schmidt’s initial work transitioned from designing custom stationery for consumers, to creating custom stationery systems for businesses. Since the company’s official launch in 2009, 30 vastly different clients have been added to Blue Design Shop’s portfolio.

Some services offered include logo design, WordPress web and blog designs, business cards, flyers, car/truck decals, social media images and much more. Schmidt says Blu Design Shop has earned a respectable reputation because of its award-winning customer service in addition to its wide range of start-up services. In addition, Schmidt says, Blu Design Shop’s prices are geared to help startups and grow with their businesses.

Since she, herself was once a start-up, Schmidt understands where clients are coming from, and believes that a company’s branding and web needs shouldn’t be one of the obstacles holding them back from bringing a great service or product to consumers.

Schmidt says her passion for her clients’ ideas and and her team’s designs that bring client visions to life is what makes Blu Design Shop unique. “We are flexible with our service offerings, as we understand each client is different,” she adds, “We approach our clients’ businesses from more of a customer service standpoint versus a technical one, which allows for mutually beneficial partnerships.”

Starting this month, Blu Design Shop is offering a new service that focuses on social media support for clients, helping them grow their online presence, while giving them more time to focus on other aspects of their business. “Most of our clients are start-ups, which means they are insanely busy with every detail of their business, and it’s difficult for them to make time for social media; let alone afford it,” explains Schmidt.

Schmidt and her team also plan to give back to the Cincinnati area and its economy. One way in which they currently do that is through their content contribution to Bad Girl Ventures, a local company that helps entrepreneurial women achieve success.

To learn more, visit www.bellabludesignshoppe.com or “like” them on Facebook.

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010515BEAUTY1

The Brideface team in front of their new Over The Rhine storefront

 

Ask and you shall receive. At least that’s the way it works at Brideface.

 

Based in Over The Rhine, this multiple-award-winning posse of makeup artists specializes in bridal and makeup coaching throughout the Tri-State. Their coaching classes can be customized for tweens, mother-daughter, or a girls night out.

 

In addition, owner Nancy Dawson launched a “FACEing” cosmetics line in 2013. The line currently includes lipsticks, lip glosses, cheek color, brushes, brow mascara, brow kits and eye shadows. Dawson has plans to soon launch more offerings.

010515BEAUTY
Brideface “Blockbuster Box”

 

“I hear it over and over in my FACEing classes,” Dawson recently posted. “So many women hate foundation. They wish they could buy a lightweight product that is good for their skin, evens the tone, and makes it just look healthy, not covered up and flat. Well we have a new product coming that will blow you away!”

 

Client feedback is what fuels new ideas for her business, Dawson says. In fact, prior to the holidays, she began receiving requests for “beauty bundles,” or just a few of her favorite things all wrapped up with pretty packaging to give as a gift. She obliged, and says it’s been a big hit.

 

“A long-time client contacted me just a few days before Christmas and asked me to pull together six $200 beauty boxes for the women in her family,” Dawson explains. “I customized them each and added a note on how to use the products, gift wrapped them, and shipped them out!”

 

After posting an example on Facebook, orders began to flow. “I can do them in any price point,” she adds. “A husband called me because his wife had just taken a FACEing class with me, so I pulled together the things I had recommended for her in the lesson.”

 

According to Dawson, a “Brideface Blockbuster Box” typically includes an assortment of brushes, lip collection, cheeky cream blushes, and brow collection. “We also have brush rolls and canisters and lot of people have been loving those to keep their tools organized,” she explains.

 

Price points vary depending on the products included, but a $200 gift package includes seven makeup brushes, two lip colors, cheek color, liner, twissors, brow mascara and brow sketchstick.

 

Not only is the Blockbuster Box concept a big hit for Brideface, but their new location is too. “We did so well in our new location over Christmas,” Dawson says, “we just love it!”

 

Located at 2009 Elm Street, Dawson says foot traffic has been steadily increasing with the rapid development in OTR, and foresees a major boost once the streetcar is up and running. “Because we are so off the beaten path from Vine and Main, we haven’t yet been able to piggyback off [OTR’s] shopping events. But when we did Fuchsia Friday, on black friday, we were listed in the OTR Chamber of Commerce marketing materials so we saw a huge surge from that,” she explains. “We rely heavily on Rheingeist traffic now, since we are the only businesses at that end of the street. That all [will] change rapidly though as the streetcar gets closer to opening!”

 

To learn more, visit www.brideface.com.

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010515FASHION

 

One lens, many frames. That’s the idea behind Frameri.

 

Essentially, with Frameri glasses, you have lenses that snap in and out of a variety of Frameri frames – allowing you to own a single pair of prescription lenses or sun lenses and move them between an array of boutique quality frames.

 

“The inspiration for the concept was from me not being able to treat glasses as an accessory,” says Konrad Billetz, CEO and Founder of Frameri. “I would put together an outfit with a bag, shoes, clothes, etc., but my glasses were the only thing I was never able to change. I only had one pair of glasses and they were expensive, so I though the Frameri system could be better – and that’s what we set out to do.”

 

Frameri offers handmade Italian frames for $100 and lenses for $100 a pair – designing and sourcing everything in-house without a middleman. “We love that we have changed something for the better,” says Billetz. “We made our glasses with the customer in mind and we are happy to bring to market a product that is fashion-forward, smart and design-oriented.”

 

Since launching last July, Frameri has already started working on expanding their capabilities on the prescription side. “We offer progressive lenses, higher prescriptions and some awesome sun lenses – all processed in-house in our OTR optical lab,” says Billetz. “We are also expanding the frame options. We introduced new colors in our Holiday Collection and are working on new styles, sizes and colors as we speak to release in 2015.”

 

Above all, Billetz wants to shake up what he refers to as a “rather boring industry” and challenge the way things have always been done in an effort to make glasses better for the people who actually wear them. “As we continue to grow and build our brand, you’ll see many new frames choices, new lens choices, and a whole lot more fun,” he says.

 

As for what sets Frameri apart, Billetz says their product improves the experience of wearing glasses. “Our team is dedicated to making the glasses system about the glasses-wearer,” he adds. “We wanted to make the highest quality frames available, and we did it.”

 

“We have created something new in an industry that’s been lacking in innovation for quite some time,” he continues. “Most notably though, we have no experience in the industry – we’ve learned everything on our own as we go, which is a further testament to our drive to make glasses better.”

 

Beyond providing new jobs, Billetz says the early success of Frameri and other notable Cincy startups shows how important the startup culture is becoming in Cincinnati.

 

“Fueled by The Brandery, CincyTech, and Cintrifuse, the startup community is becoming as vibrant in Cincinnati as it is just about anywhere,” says Billetz. “It’s really special to get to call Cincinnati home for us. One of our big goals for 2015 is finding ways to engage with our local community more as well as with other local startups.”

 

Watch the video below to see how they work. To learn more, visit www.frameri.com or email Frameri at hello@frameri.com. Plus, Billetz says, “Anyone local to Cincinnati can set up a time to drop by our office and check out the glasses in person.”

 

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Lots of clothes but nothing to wear? Marsha Ashley and Brock Maitland know the feeling. That’s why they launched Style Edit.

 

Style Edit is a Cincinnati based wardrobe styling business, helping women and men across the Tri-State to revamp, edit, cultivate and distinguish their style. Style Edit offers personalized wardrobe consultations and advice on fashion trends, clothing and cuts that work best for their clients.

010515FEATURE2

They also works with corporate clients – such as magazines, production companies, designers, department stores and boutiques – to style photo shoots, dress store windows, host events, act as creative directors, and speak on upcoming trends.

 

When this dynamic duo first launched Style Edit in Spring 2011, they were just two friends who were new to the Queen City. They met in a marketing class at the University of Kentucky in 2004 and their passion for fashion instantly brought them together.

 

Just before they launched Style Edit, Maitland says the two were working downtown and in search of style inspiration. “We created our blog and immediately immersed ourselves in the growing fashion scene in the city,” says Maitland. “A few months later, we launched our styling company, Style Edit.”

 

Now that they’ve been in business for several years now, Maitland says that she and Ashley have had the pleasure of working with incredible partners, including Saks Cincinnati. They’ve also been able to grow their client base extensively and continue to expand their brand’s awareness. “We’ve also narrowed into how the majority of Cincinnatians approach fashion and style,” Maitland explains.

 

Whether your budget is unlimited or tighter than a pair of leather pants, Style Edit can help. While they can shop for and add new key pieces to clients’ wardrobe, Maitland says revamping your wardrobe isn’t always about buying something new.

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In fact, clients often hire Style Edit because they just want to see their wardrobe with new eyes. In that case, Maitland says, they look through the client’s wardrobe to offer advice on how to wear certain pieces, pair together outfits the client wouldn’t have coordinated otherwise, and even pull items to be altered to update the cut or better fit the client.

 

“There are different body types and varied goals people want to accomplish with their clothes,” says Maitland. “And we’re able to help both readers and clients alike navigate them.”

 

Maitland says they especially love to help clients re-think and expand their wardrobe options with seasonless dressing. “We always advocate repurposing summer favorites for the fall, and even winter,” she says. “Think of a maxi dress you loved in the summer and try pairing it with a chunky knit sweater and suede slouch boots.”

 

Maitland says that Style Edit has some exciting things on the horizon, and they’ll be making the big announcement soon on their new website, www.styleeditstudio.com.

 

To keep up to date on Style Edit, their announcements and styling tips, follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

 

First Photo by: Saeide Kmi & Siavash Yansori
Second Photo by: Claire Marie Photo

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010515HEALTH

Homemade meals are yummy and nutritious, but they rarely fit in your busy schedule. That’s where Meals from Scratch can help.

 

A father and son team, Matthew and Phillip Hayden launched Meals from Scratch, a division of Scratch Food, in November 2011. Then, in 2014, Jason Haught, owner of Bathfitter in Southwestern Ohio, recognized the potential of Meals from Scratch and also jumped on board.

 

Meals from Scratch focuses on creating convenient, nutrient dense prepared meals for those who have busy schedules. Additionally, Meals from Scratch also helps those who need assistance with lifestyle disease management because of diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

 

According to Matthew, the inspiration for Meals from Scratch came from a notice of the lack of nutrient dense alternatives in the foodservice industry. “We were just beginning to develop our product when we met The Pink Ribbon Girls,” explains Hayden. “We decided straight away that this local charity would demand our full effort, and would ultimately become our primary focus and our inspiration.”

 

Since nearly one in three Americans suffers from a lifestyle and/or dietary associated disease, Matthew and his father knew that they would be serving a significant need by starting Meals from Scratch.

 

Today, most people know someone who suffers from or has died from a lifestyle of poor nutrition, whether it is diabetes, heart disease or cancer. This includes Hayden. He says that he lost his mother to cancer and even he had to undergo multiple heart bypass surgeries to repair the damage a poor diet in his youth had caused, despite maintaining a fit appearance throughout his life.

 

What makes Meals from Scratch unique, according to Matthew, is that it’s a diet that makes sense. “The American Diet is based on a model that is extremely flawed,” he adds. “Meals from Scratch is not interested in following a traditional model, we simply combine the right foods for a perfect diet.”

 

It’s also the taste of the food that makes Meals from Scratch so different from its competitors, Matthew says. The food is created by executive chefs who focus on taste, because as Hayden laughs, “how sustainable is any diet if the food does not taste good?”

 

Meals from Scratch started with a single client knocking on the door and asking if they had any prepared meals to take home to her family. They’ve since grown to preparing more than 600 meals every week and shipping them all over Ohio.

 

There’s also the partnership with Pink Ribbon Girls of Dayton. “The Pink Ribbon Girls asked us to prepare meals for their clients that included late stage breast cancer patients in need of domestic services,” says Hayden. “In the beginning, we were preparing a few dozen meals a week and hand delivering them to these deserving women.”

 

Hayden says there are plenty of plans for the future. He adds that with the addition of Haught, they plan to take their product directly to customers. They’ll start working with their friends in the healthcare industry to expose clients to the convenient, nutrient dense products offered by Meals from Scratch.

 

“We’ll also be making our meals available to the general public on our website and at our headquarters in Centerville,” he says. “We are confidence that our strong, locally sourced, processed ingredient-free meals are a perfect fit for those in need of a healthy meal as well as those seeking lifestyle disease state management.”

 

Meals from Scratch is located at 767 Miamisburg-Centerville Road in Centerville. To learn more, visit www.scratchfood.com or “like” them on Facebook.

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shari How is 2015 going to be bigger, brighter and more successful than the previous year? If you haven’t given this much thought, let me make some suggestions. I have a few good ideas that might help you start developing a plan.

Give yourself the gift of Forgiveness
Have you been carrying around some extra luggage that you need to let go? Maybe, just maybe it’s time to move on. It could be that you are finding it hard to forgive yourself for something that has happened in your past. Even though you try to convince yourself that you have “moved on”, this incident has colored everything else in your present and future. So, in essence, you haven’t really moved on at all. Until you make a decision to finally let go of this albatross, life will continue to be less than you desire. Make a pact to forgive yourself and wipe the slate clean. Realize, once and for all, that life is not perfect, and you’re human. Make your amends and go forward.

 

Give yourself the gift of Acceptance
Do you struggle with being enough? Do you constantly compare yourself to others and come up short? Maybe it’s your friend’s salary, their great career, perfect kids, beautiful home or great spouse. Whatever it is, I’ve come across some folks that make a lifetime habit of feeling that they just don’t stack up. The thing is, while you’re wasting energy thinking about how you don’t have the perfect body, you could be actually changing your life. No one has a perfect life— period. People only allow you to see what they want you to see. Work on improving your own life and becoming a better person. Refrain from beating yourself up to get there. Accept you for you and appreciate your gifts.

 

Give yourself the gift of Reinvention
How do you feel about change? Hopefully, you’ve made peace with it and have incorporated this concept into your day-to-day life. You should always be looking for the ways that you can learn and grow. When you’re feeling unhappy, chances are, you have allowed yourself to get stuck. You’ve gotten comfortable with doing things the same way time after time. You are no longer challenging yourself. Think of reinvention and change as an ongoing process. It never stops. Push yourself to do at least one new thing everyday— no matter how small it appears to be. For example, try a different restaurant, take a different route to work, talk to someone that you have never talked to. When changing your job seems overwhelming, just take one little step at a time. One change leads to another and to another and eventually you’ve successfully reinvented yourself.

 

Give yourself the gift of Authenticity
On the surface, it doesn’t seem so difficult to just be yourself. However, for some individuals, this one goal can be extremely challenging. Being “you” means that you may have to disappoint other people and this can be intensely painful. Maybe you have incorporated a belief system where pleasing others is way more important than ever pleasing yourself. You may have a battle going on in your head that isn’t exactly the most rational discussion. That’s the thing— those battles rarely make sense. Having authenticity and being yourself means that you live true to your own values, beliefs and goals— not someone else’s set of expectations. When you live your life this way, you find the happiness and success that you’ve been searching for.

 

My hope is that you will do an honest self-assessment and are able to make 2015 a fantastic year.

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010515ADVERTORIAL

A picture, it is said, is worth a thousand words. But two years ago, when Mary Price first saw the picture of her with her newborn grandson, Ronan, the words that crossed her mind were relatively few, but decidedly urgent.

 

For as long as Price could remember she had struggled with her weight. And, the diminutive 5-foot-tall nursing manager had a lot of successes, losing 30 or more pounds each time she dieted.

 

But then, she always gained those pounds back and many more, until late 2011 when she received that telling photo when she weighed 210 pounds.

 

It was simply far too much weight for her tiny frame. And, as a nurse who trains other nurses, Price knew all too well what all that extra fat meant for her health. In fact, she could feel it in every fiber of her being.

 

Every joint in her body ached. She couldn’t stand for long and became easily winded. She was pre-diabetic, and even though she took medication, her cholesterol levels were too high. Even her asthma had worsened as her stressed and overweight body worked ever harder just to breathe.

 

The Florence mother and grandmother knew she had to do something radical about her weight or she probably wouldn’t be around – or at least wouldn’t be healthy enough – to really enjoy her three children and their five youngsters.

 

“So, I did my research and went to all the information sessions for the different programs at the Weight Management Center at St. Elizabeth Florence,” she recalls. “I went to the surgical weight loss program and learned about the sleeve gastrectomy. That’s when I just felt this huge – excuse the pun – ‘weight’ come off my shoulders because I remember thinking that this is my answer – that surgery. And the thing that really sold me on it was that it cuts off the part of the stomach that creates most of the hunger hormone. So I just thought, ‘Bingo! This is my answer.'”

 

That was October 2011. By the following February, Price was signed up and beginning preparation for the surgery – like all Weight Management Center patients – by undergoing several months of medically supervised dieting, nutritional and psychological counseling, physical evaluation and pre-operative education.

 

Both Price and the weight management experts at the center say that pre-operative preparation period — which typically lasts three to six months — is critical to long-term success with bariatric surgery.

 

“I think that this is a major strength of our program that is not offered at other surgical programs in the area,” says Weight Management Center Clinical Psychologist and Behavioral Therapist, Dr. Laurie Little.

 

“Effective weight management should address biological, nutritional and behavioral issues, and St. Elizabeth is the only center that addresses all of these areas,” Little explains. “Healthy weight management is not just about what you eat, but a great deal about how and why you eat. Although the surgery is an incredibly powerful tool that helps restrict the amount of food one can eat in one sitting, if a patient does not address any underlying maladaptive eating patterns, they will not lose the amount of weight they want to lose, or they run the risk of regaining it back over time.”


 

A surgery that removes the source of hunger-triggering hormone
By the day of Mary Price’s Aug. 15 surgery, she said she was very well prepared and ready to dive right in to a new lifestyle. And that she did, immediately dropping 15 pounds the first month and about 10 pounds monthly after that until, by this past August, she had shed almost half of her body weight.

 

Part of her success can be attributed to one of the key benefits of this popular form of bariatric surgery. As her surgeon, Dr. Magued Khouzam explains, sleeve gastrectomy takes both the stomach’s capacity and source of hunger triggers away.

 

“We remove the portion of the stomach that allows it to stretch,” says Dr. Khouzam. “So, instead of having a big stretch of stomach, this sleeve gastrectomy procedure gives you a very limited volume stomach that doesn’t stretch. When we remove this [stretchable] part, we’re also removing the part where it’s believed the hormones are secreted that create your appetite in your brain. So patients are no longer hungry.”

 

The procedure – the most popular bariatric surgery at St. Elizabeth – worked so well for Price that today she is not only a svelte 122 pounds, but she’s much healthier and energetic. For instance, she walks everywhere she can because the pain that plagued her joints is completely gone.

 

She’s no longer looking to a future with diabetes because her blood sugar levels are normal. And even though cardiovascular disease runs in her family, she has been able to cut her cholesterol medicines in half. Even her asthma has greatly improved.

 

In short, Price is on track to live a long and active life. And that’s something that many people in her extended family are very thankful for this New Year.

 

“I can get down on the floor now and play with my grandchildren and I don’t have to look for the nearest piece of furniture to grab to get back up. I can take a walk with them and be on my feet enjoying life,” she says. “I just feel more confident and better about myself. In fact, I can even jump. I couldn’t do that before, but recently I was somewhere with my grandsons and I jumped. It’s funny, but I just remember thinking, ‘Oh, my gosh, I can jump now! I can jump!'”

 

To learn more about the St. Elizabeth Weight Management Center, a Bariatric Center of Excellence certified by the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, call (859) 212-4625.

 

This is a special advertising supplement, paid for by St. Elizabeth Healthcare

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010615SPOTLIGHT

Cincy Chic: What is English Traditions?
Casey Cordill, Co-Owner of English Traditions: We’re a unique, timeless, quality European antiques, replica furniture, upholstery, lighting and accessories store. English Traditions is a family-owned and operated business in O’Bryonville.

 

Cincy Chic: Who’s behind the business?
Cordill: My mother Mary started the business in O’Bryonville in 1992. We’re now co-owners together.

 

Cincy Chic: What’s the inspiration behind the business?
Cordill: My mother was inspired by antiques while she lived in Connecticut, specially by an antique store that’s nice was English and Irish Pine furniture. When her family moved to Cincinnati, she was compelled to bring Cincinnati what she missed and grew to love in Connecticut.

 

Cincy Chic: What types of products do you offer customers?
Cordill: We sell unique and custom home furnishings you won’t find anywhere else. At English Traditions we offer our customers one-of-a-kind hand-selected European antiques and accessories. In addition to our European antiques, we also work directly with replica furniture workshops in both the United Kingdom and France that can customize the perfect pieces for our customers’ homes.

 

For our customers who want comfortable and well-crafted custom upholstery, English Traditions has a wide selection of options. Our upholstery and fabric lines have hundreds of styles and thousands of fabrics to choose from. Our customers are sure to find the perfect sofa, chair, ottoman or fabric by the yard, all of which is proudly produced and build in the U.S.

 

If our customers already have those staple pieces that make a house a home and they are just looking to freshen things up, we have a vast selection of lighting and other accessories that will do just that. From the little treasures found abroad, to our pewter collection, hand-embroidered pillows, artwork, both antique and locally-made, our customers are sure to find something unique that speaks to them.

 

English Traditions also offers design services to our customers. With so many options, we understand that things can be overwhelming, but we can help. If our customer just needs assistance with getting pointed in the right direction or if they want a scaled room plan developed, our goal is to make designing as easy as we can.

 

You can also find our products on our website, www.englishtraditions.com.

 

Cincy Chic: Is there anything new on the horizon for English Traditions?
Cordill: Our French shipment just arrived! We’re expected our latest shipment from the U.K. this month with more one-of-a-kind English antiques as well as a beautiful representation for our Replica Furniture Collection.

 

Cincy Chic: Where are you located?
Cordill: We established our roots back in 1992 at 2041 Madisonville Road in Cincinnati. We also have a second location at 340 Fifth Avenue South in Naples, Florida.

 

Cincy Chic: Where can readers go to learn more?
Cordill: Readers can visit one of our stores, call 513-321-4730 or visit our website www.englishtraditions.com. You can also subscribe to our blog and follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Houzz.

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010515SOCIAL

 

Make a resolution to watch your calories, but not ready to give up your social life? Check out the world’s first calorie-free cocktail offered exclusively at Obscura Cincinnati.

 

According to Shawn McCabe, Media Relations Director of Obscura and President of McCabe Media, this exclusive concept means you can have cocktails without the calories. “No calories, no carbs, no impurities and the effects of consuming alcohol are immediately felt, making it easier to responsibly imbibe,” he adds.

 

According to Obscura mixologists, five minutes after the vessel containing the spirits is placed on the base, it is ready to consume. One inhales through the straw and holds their breath for a moment, then exhales. It’s as simple as that. “As for the effects of the Vaportini, they don’t last as long as traditional consumption – but this can certainly be a positive aspect,” says McCabe.

 

“The New Year’s resolution, health-conscious, true liquor/bourbon connoisseur, share-with-friends, the most social drink, the unique experience, the classy/slick/modern feel of the method are all elements we are proud of,” says McCabe. “The ability of our mixologists to customize the experience with your favorites and guide you on a journey of flavorful, luxurious and breathtaking experiences is second-to-none.”

 

Sound a little sci-fi? Give it a try, says McCabe, because it’s the future of cocktails. “Considering the nature of the Vaportini approach to the consumption of alcohol, it can be intimidating,” he adds. “However, it is simple, natural and enjoyable.” Another benefit of the Vaportini is that it gives patrons more control. According to McCabe, shortly after exhaling all of the effects of the alcohol consumed are felt, as opposed to the 20 to 30 minutes it takes to feel the full effects of traditionally consumed spirits.

 

Obscura, located at the corner of Seventh and Walnut Streets downtown, aims to fill a niche for business people, art lovers and those interested in networking using a forgotten classic, “the cocktail lounge,” says McCabe.

 

Inside, you’ll find a grand space, modeled after a French Chateau that would make even Napoleon proud, with deep wing back armchairs, marble top bistro tables, a grand player piano, floor-to-ceiling window treatments, French Empire crystal chandeliers and white Italian Table lamps.

 

“The Obscura brand is synonymous with our very high quality expectations and we protect it with the same passion we mix into our drinks,” says McCabe.

 

Their drink menu is focused on mixology with fresh fruits, spices and unique ingredients. The Vaportini, however, is providing guests with a revolutionary way of consuming alcohol. Inhaled rather than swallowed, the smooth and flavorful vapors are absorbed directly into the bloodstream.

 

“There is a great tie-in to feature our exclusive bourbon barrel memberships coinciding with delicious Vaportini experiences,” continues McCabe. “This experience happens only in the most luxurious, subtly sexy and refined venue in Downtown Cincinnati amongst the power-brokers of our region and the most fashionable entertainment seekers.”

 

To learn more, call (513) 421-3800 or visit www.obscuracincinnati.com.

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