Monday, August 30, 2010

Loving the Emmy's and Twitter

I sent out 35 "tweets" last night during the Emmy's. That was a first. It was so fun, I just became addicted-I couldn't stop myself. Anyone else experience this? Welcome to the land of technology, home of twitter and all things "social." Although, now that I really think about it, I was being a little anti-social with my family. Oh well, at least I was being virtually social on-line. Right?

The Emmy's and after-party show was a lot of fun to watch. I thought Jimmy Fallon did a good job, Tina Fey was hilarious and Channel 12's Faye and Tram brought it all home beautifully. And, how gorgeous is Kim Kardashian and actress Sofia Vergara? I mean, WOW!

After enjoying the back and forth banter with twitter friends, I think I might have to watch TV like this from now on...with a laptop...on my lap.

Photo Courtesy: Seth Katz, Extra

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A "Pink" Pause -- For the Cure

We're gearing up to celebrate breast cancer awareness in October and partnering with the Phoenix affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Look for our Valley physicians guide in our upcoming Sept/Oct issue.

It's important to make your health a top priority, and we hope you take it as seriously as we do. In so doing, we’ve researched, interviewed and explored a number of health topics affecting women, and within the pages of the magazine, we’ve brought you what we’ve learned...also available online.

These topics include the latest in breast health screenings, why weight-loss surgery has become so prevalent, which hormone therapy is changing lives and how sporting vein-free legs is an office-visit away.

Also deserving of attention--our fashion spread featuring fresh, new faces and local talent as we kick off our first ever Phoenix Woman model search in partnership with Get Image Ready. Our winners look amazing and can be found on pages 16-23. This contest has been extremely rewarding as we feature aspiring models and photographers—making their dreams of magazine success come true.

And isn’t that what life is all about? Learning everything we can, helping others along the way and taking time to enjoy ourselves, our surroundings and our families—truly reveling in all of life’s pleasurable moments.

As a way to soak in every minute, I’ve paused—several times—as you’ll see in these snapshots. And, boy am I delighted I did—these pictures will forever remind me of the fun times, the friendships gained and my incredible journey, as I get to meet the coolest people (Olivia Newton-John was one of them) and do some pretty cool things—ride sky high on a ski lift, just for fun.

And for a brief moment, in my son’s eyes, I was “the coolest” for having met “Malcolm in the Middle” star, Frankie Muniz. So, I propose—especially during our “pink” month of October—we all take pause—in honor of our health, appreciating breast cancer heroes, as a way of savoring life and in solace of all the special experiences this world brings.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Another Boost for Women

Accounting & Finance Personnel, Inc. has promoted Pamela Zanzucchi to Vice President of the Phoenix office. Pamela has an MBA-Accountancy, and obtained her degree (Finance) from ASU. She has been with the company since 2007. Accounting & Finance Personnel, Inc. is a locally owned top executive search firm specializing in full time and temporary accounting & finance staffing, and has been in business for 20 years.

Monday, December 14, 2009

IKEA Holiday Gifts Support Global UNICEF and Save the Children Educational Programs

This holiday season, the softest, sweetest and cuddliest IKEA soft toys--amazingly priced--are available at IKEA Tempe. These soft toys range in price from $0.49 to only $19.99. With each purchase, between Nov. 1 and Dec. 24, approximately $1.47 ($1 Euro dollar) will go to IKEA’s partners UNICEF and Save the Children’s educational programs.

Proceeds from the IKEA Soft Toys campaign have or will benefit projects in more than 30 countries including India, Uganda, China and many others.

Since the start of the Soft Toy program in 2003, IKEA has raised over $22 million dollars ($16.7 Euros) to help improve the lives of millions of children in Asia, Africa and Central and Eastern Europe.

This year’s campaign will enable UNICEF and Save the Children to extend or start up new projects in nine countries, as well as finance ongoing projects. Donations focus on improving children’s educational needs which includes books and good school facilities.

One Euro dollar ($1.47 American dollars) is enough to provide five children with school books for one year. It’s a program with a big heart; one that makes it possible to join efforts to ensure all children have access to education. This program helps to build the knowledge necessary to combat disease and eradicate poverty and hunger for millions of children around the world.

Last year, the IKEA U.S. stores helped lead the IKEA global effort with the second highest soft toy sales. The result was almost $500,000. These funds will go a long way toward helping children reach their full potential.

"The IKEA Soft Toy promotion will provide valuable resources to help us reach the world’s most vulnerable children with life-changing opportunities,” said Charlie MacCormack, President and CEO of Save the Children. “This program can help us ensure that children in marginalized and remote communities have access to education and are able to learn.”

“Continuing a long tradition of leadership as a socially responsible company, IKEA, through its soft toy initiative is helping UNICEF to ensure that children can attend school in a safe and protective environment,” said Caryl M. Stern, President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. “A quality environment is a vital element in helping us in our goal of reducing the number of children dying from preventable causes from 24,000 a day to zero.”

This year also marks the 21st Anniversary for IKEA and the UNICEF holiday greeting card sales partnership. When you purchase UNICEF holiday cards at any IKEA U.S. store, 100 percent of the proceeds from the sales of the cards go directly to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, with IKEA donating an additional $1 per pack sold. The cards come in boxed choices, from 10 up to 20 cards per box and range in price from $10 to $20. IKEA customers have helped to generate over $3 million in support of UNICEF’s life-saving programs through greeting card purchases since the partnership began in 1988.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

‘Tis The Season
Weight Watchers Tips for Avoiding Holiday Overindulgences, Not the Scales

It's easy to be tempted to overindulge during the family dinners, parties and various celebrations that fill the holiday season. But consider that an extra 500 calories a day translates into one pound of body weight per week. With a little advance planning, some great advice and steely resolve, the season can be celebrated without any movement on the scale. Consider these tips from Weight Watchers®:

Don’t starve
Arriving at any party famished can lead to overdoing it, so eat a healthy meal or snack beforehand, leaving just enough room (and POINTS® values) for a few small treats.

But make it water or other low-calorie beverage—you’ll slow down your eating and help fill yourself up. And limit your alcohol intake—it’s not only a major source of calories and POINTS values, it can weaken your ability to stick to your eating plan.

Know what you eat
Just because it’s the holidays, don’t forget all the weight management skills you’ve already acquired. When you choose to indulge, keep journaling. By writing down what you’re eating, you’re less apt to eat mindlessly.

Don’t deprive yourself
But do limit your portions. By eating small portions of only things you really want you’ll enjoy the specialties while staying on track.

Set priorities
Rate each dish on the buffet from 1 to 10, with “10” being the best choices for you and “1” being foods you know you should limit or avoid. Fill your plate with the high numbers and only try a minimal amount (or none!) of the others.

Reduce sedentary behavior like surfing the net and gradually work up to 60 minutes of exercise on most days of the week. It will help in your weight-loss efforts or allow you to eat a bit more without guilt.

Be realistic
Perhaps losing weight during the holiday season might not be the most practical objective for you right now. Allow your weight goal during the holidays to be to stay right where you are, not necessarily to lose weight. Then, once the holidays are over you can get right back to losing.

“Lighten Up”
With a few smart, common-sense changes in food preparation and eating habits, you will save calories and POINTS values without sacrificing flavor. Here are some suggestions to keep your holiday recipes healthy:
•Replace dark meat turkey with white meat plus remove the skin.
•Make stuffing with a fat-free broth instead of turkey drippings.
•Skip the butter for broth and prepare mashed potatoes using fat-free or 1% milk.
•Modify the traditional green bean casserole by using low-fat soup and breadcrumbs.
•Try baked sweet potatoes with light butter instead of candied potatoes.
•Top fish dishes with a fresh fruit salsa instead of a hollandaise sauce.
•Get on the gravy train using fat-free broth or bouillon instead of turkey pan drippings.
•Serve a one-crust pumpkin pie instead of a double-crusted fruit pie.

Celebrating 42 years in Arizona and 48 years nationwide, Weight Watchers is America’s trusted name in weight loss and the global leader in weight-loss services, with approximately 50,000 weekly meetings held worldwide. For information about pricing, programs and services call 1-800-651-6000 or click

Arizona Wineries Produce Record Harvest

Wineries and vineyards in Arizona? Absolutely! The Verde Valley (Arizona wine country in the Sedona, Cottonwood red rock region) is not only one of the most beautiful regions of Arizona, it is an exceptional place to grow grapes and make delicious Arizona wine. This year the local vineyards produced a record harvest. Eric Gomski, Page Springs Cellars Owner & Winemaker says, "2009 is one of those rare vintages where everything was perfect: no rain, perfect temperatures and no late season frost. The harvest was not only bountiful, but the character of the young wines indicates this year's grapes will produce one of the finest vintages ever."

Page Springs Cellars is one of four wineries with tasting rooms looking out on vineyards that are on the Verde Valley Wine Trail. The wine trail connects the dots between the communities of Cottonwood, Sedona, Camp Verde, and Jerome. The surroundings are rich red rock formations, desert foliage, lush canyon greenery and the flowing water of the Verde River, Oak Creek and Page Springs. Nestled here are four wineries: Alcantara Vineyards, Page Springs Cellars, Oak Creek Vineyards and Javelina Leap Vineyards and two tasting rooms: Caduceus Cellars and the Jerome Winery. The wineries and area activities can be found at

"We have visitors who love to come to the winery at this time of year to enjoy the fall weather, have a picnic on our lawn overlooking the vineyards, and sample the wine tastings" says Barbara Predmore, Owner of Alcantara Vineyards. "Alcantara, like the other Verde Valley wineries, are family farms in the best tradition of American agriculture. Our wineries connect consumers directly with winemakers and their staff who share a very personal passion for their unique jobs of hand-crafting wine...what could be more fun?"

The Wine Trail vineyards and wineries have matured over the past 9 years. Rod Snapp, Javelina Leap Winemaker, says "Surprisingly, Arizona's sunshine, heat and the unique rocky soils of the Verde Valley are an excellent environment for growing grapes. The soils and stressful growing conditions force the vines to struggle to survive which causes the vines to put their energy into developing less abundant but higher quality, more intensely flavored fruit--just the characteristics the winemaker wants to craft great wine."

The Verde Valley, Arizona's wine country, is under-discovered but the people who have been to the region and tasted the wine it produces attest to its excellence--quite a few wines have won national awards for their quality. The wineries' offerings include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Viognier, Rousanne, Zinfandel, Merlot, Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, just to name a few. Every winery has its own unique personality and distinct wines for visitors to discover at each stop along the Wine Trail. Every Tasting Room has a sampling menu that changes throughout the year as wines reach the proper age after maturing in barrels in the wineries' aging rooms. All of the Tasting Room menus can be viewed on the Wine Trail website.

For details on Arizona's Verde Valley Wine Trail visit

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Give Your Pet a Reason to Be Thankful
Friends of Animal Care & Control Urges Pet Owners to Take Thanksgiving Precautions

While the holiday signals a time to give thanks, neither you nor your pet will be grateful if you have to spend Thanksgiving Day at your local Emergency Animal Clinic. Friends of Animal Care & Control urges pet owners to keep these simple safety tips in mind.

Don’t feed your dog or cat poultry bones! Cooked turkey, duck, geese and other bird bones are brittle and can easily snap or splinter and become lodged in your pet’s throat. Additionally, sharp bone fragments can tear or block your pet’s intestines.

Vegetarian households beware! There are many non-meat items that can be harmful to pets. Sage and many other herbs contain essential oils, which are especially hazardous for cats. Onions, raw bread dough and chocolate are a few other popular holiday items that can be dangerous for pets.

Watch the table! Unsupervised food is tempting to curious cats and dogs. Not only can animals find food on the dinner table, they are also adept at seeking it out on kitchen counters. Ask your guests to keep dishes and alcoholic beverages off of low-lying tables and away from pets.

Keep leftovers and trash out of paws reach! The smell of table scraps could prove too much of a temptation for pets, so it’s best to remove garbage as soon as you are finished. Make sure all trash cans are secure and difficult to open.

Give pets a quiet retreat during busy festivities. The constant hustle and bustle of a Thanksgiving dinner may be too much stress for your pet to handle. Give your companion animal a retreat where he can escape the noise--a spare bedroom with a radio tuned to soft music and a comfy bed is a perfect spot for your dog or cat.

If you and your family are looking for a meaningful way to enjoy the holiday season, consider making a donation to Animal Care & Control’s Spay/Neuter Assistance Program. The program provides no-cost spay and neuter services to companion animals of Maricopa County residents in need of financial assistance. Last year the program received more than $1 million in funding from Friends of Animal Care & Control; however the demand for assistance remains high and more funding is needed to keep the program alive. Tax deductible donations can be made online at