Women’s Independent Press

Informing Women About Our World

Archive for July, 2011

Can you harness the power of Feng Shui to improve your sleep? by Yvonne Phillips

July 17, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

Along with proper nutrition, air and water, restorative sleep is essential to health and wellbeing. Without a good night’s sleep, we function below our capacity to handle the demands of life, with varying consequences.

The effects of prolonged sleep deprivation cannot be underestimated, and leads to premature aging, hormone imbalances, an increased risk of developing diabetes and high blood pressure. According to Mark Mahowald, a professor of neurology at the University of Minnesota Medical School, any amount of sleep deprivation reduces mental performance, and “one complete night of sleep deprivation is as impairing in simulated driving tests as a legally intoxicating blood-alcohol level.”

Can you harness the power of Feng Shui to improve your sleep? The answer is a resounding “yes”. If you’re tired of not getting your zzz’s, Feng Shui expert Yvonne Phillips can tell you how simple adjustments to your bedroom will make a major difference. With over 20 years of experience in the ancient art of Feng Shui and the author of “Feng Shui ABC: Project for a Weekend”, Yvonne understands how the energy or “chi” that flows around us impacts the quality of our wellbeing. If energy is blocked in our environment, this imbalance and disharmony will inevitably lead to discomfort, irritability, and prevent restful sleep.

This ancient Chinese practice is increasingly in demand here in the west for all areas of life, and Yvonne offers practical Feng Shui tips that anyone can immediately apply to their bedrooms to promote deep sleep that is so needed.

Q. How can “good” or “bad” Feng Shui affect my sleep?
A. The relationship between your environment and sleep quality is closely linked. Feng Shui is about working with energy, and the intentional clearing and arrangement of objects to allow the healthy flow of positive energy, and the dissipation of the negative. For better sleep, it focuses on purposefully working with the proper energy flow in your bedroom, which although invisible to the naked eye, directly impacts your own energy field, the quality of your sleep and overall health.

Q. What are the items in a bedroom that disrupt sleep the most?
A. Any electrical appliance or tech gadget that emits electromagnetic fields (EMFs), such as a plugged-in or wireless device. I recommend moving your alarm clock as far away from your bed as possible, if not out of the room entirely, along with removing your cell phone, computer, electric blanket, and TV. Studies show that EMFs impact the cells in your body, and deplete normal melatonin levels, with low melatonin being a major factor in poor sleep and other health problems. Excessive exposure to EMFs can disrupt normal circadian rhythms, and simply clearing out these devices from your bedroom may be the most important factor to achieve proper sleep.

Q. Once I remove EMFs, then what?
A. The next step would be to clear out any clutter and excess furniture and items which not only gather dust, but block the flow of positive chi. A bedroom filled with clutter causes energy to stagnant and creates a busy and distracting environment. Be sure to clear items from under the bed, the corners and the closet. Healthy energy flow does not follow the motto, “out of sight, out of mind”, and useless clutter piled up anywhere will throw off the energy of the entire room. Achieving a clear “Zen” space is ideal for peaceful sleep.

After the clutter and dust is cleared, consider the lighting in your bedroom. Are your window coverings keeping it dark enough at night? Melatonin production, which is essential to sleep, naturally rises in the dark and is affected by your exposure to light. To ensure proper melatonin levels which make you sleepy, block out any outside light and keep the room as dark as possible.

Q. Does the color of my bedroom matter for getting better sleep?
A. Absolutely; the proper use of color is a major factor in Feng Shui, and will dramatically impact the energy of your room and your ability to sleep. Avoid painting your bedroom red or bright orange, as it is too energizing a color to allow adequate rest. Instead, opt for soothing pastel colors such as green or blue which promotes healing and calmness, or soft cream or beige.

Q. Do you have any advice about my bedroom furniture?
A. Keep the space around your bed clear, with no objects or furniture with sharp corners jutting in. To best support your personal energy, position your bed so you can see the door while in bed, but far enough away so you’re not in alignment with it. Solid headboards made from wood are good Feng Shui, to support the chi around the head, and have a bed with a mattress raised off the floor to allow the flow of chi.

If possible, avoid sleeping under heavy ceiling beams or a slanted roof, which press down on the energy in the room. Remove any sad or depressing art or busy pictures with a lot of people, pulling on your attention. The aim is to keep the energy of the room as clear and relaxing as possible.

Q. Any final thoughts on how to sleep better?
A. Along with cool, fresh air, aromatherapy diffusers are a wonderful Feng Shui tool for improved air quality and clearer breathing, such as eucalyptus, pine or tea tree oil. Soft lighting such as salt lamps is also recommended. Keep all the doors closed at night, including the bedroom door, closet, and the en-suite bathroom door.

Your bedroom should be treated as your sanctuary where you are at your most vulnerable while recharging your energies. Feng Shui for better sleep is about balance, and creating a calm and peaceful bedroom without distraction, while also promoting a good circulation of chi.

Yvonne is certified with Feng Shui Institute International and has trained with world famous Feng Shui Master Lillian Too. As owner of Creative Color & Design, she incorporates Feng Shui principles into both residences and businesses, from small businesses to large corporations. Please visit http://www.fengshuiabc1.com

  or email yvonnephillips1@aol.com for more information.

WOMEN OF WISDOM, By Julie Ann Monzi

July 17, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

Julie Ann Monzi lives in Gettysburg, PA, with her husband, 3 almost-grown children, and 5 cats. She enjoys reading, hiking the Gettysburg Battlefield, and watching British mysteries. Julie’s work has appeared in magazines that include “Harpstring Magazine”, “Liguorian”, and “Evangel”. Need a place to de-stress? Check out her blog at www.5minutereflections.blogspot.com

From an early age, I learned the value of women, specifically older women. Mom took me along on her weekly visits to Ruth’s, the hair dresser in our neighborhood. I practically grew up there—as a baby the grandmothers passed me around as my mom got a wash and set.
When I grew older, I loved to sit on the little foot stools and listen to the women talk. I couldn’t wait for the day when it would be my turn to stick my head under the dryer like they did. As I rode my bicycle around the neighborhood, it seemed strange to see these women sitting on their porches or working in their gardens. They looked so different without their curlers and plastic robes.
In elementary school, my relationship with these ladies changed. Not seeing them weekly with my mother, I got to spend time with them on my own.
Mrs. Snyder lived next door. I loved going to her house with the lace doilies on the armrests and the ticking grandfather clock. It smelled of Mrs. Snyder’s own sweet scent and fresh baked bread. We’d sit at her dining room table and look at old pictures while she’d tell me stories of her childhood. It fascinated me to see pictures of my hometown looking so old and different in black and white. I wish I could remember her stories now.
In the spring, a row of lovely hyacinths, purple and pink, grew in Mrs. Snyder’s back yard. One morning she pulled a pair of scissors from her apron pocket and carefully cut a bouquet for me to take home. I gripped the flowers tightly and presented them to my mom. Afterward while I was playing, I took a sniff of my hand. It smelled overwhelmingly of Mrs. Snyder’s personal fragrance from where she handled the flowers. I refused to wash my hand all day.
Another woman from our neighborhood was Mrs. Vrotney. She’d known me, like the others, since I was a baby, but I related to her better when I became an adult. Mrs. Vrotney attended a make-up demonstration I conducted at my mother’s house. As a wanna-be saleswoman of cleansers and eye shadow, I asked the group, “You wouldn’t wash your hair with soap, would you?”
Mrs. Vrotney laughed and said, “Yes, I do it all the time.”
Trying not to get flustered, I tried again. “Well, you wouldn’t brush your teeth with soap, would you?”
Everyone chuckled.
Later in private, as Mrs. Vrotney bought the cleanser and foundation, she said, “You know, when I was little, I did brush my teeth with soap, but I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to mess you up.”
I was grateful.
Several years later I married and eventually had children of my own. When I was pregnant a third time, tests showed my baby might have Downs Syndrome. Mrs. Vrotney became my prayer champion. She sent me prayer cards and even a hand written prayer that she prayed daily. Thank God, my son was born healthy.
Mrs. Vrotney told me in her later years that she didn’t know why God kept her around, but she figured it was because even though she couldn’t do much, she could still pray.
When my children grew older, I volunteered at the local nursing home. I met several lovely women, two who hold a special place in my heart.
I met Aunt Ethel, as she asked to be called, as I was leaving the building one afternoon. She was sitting in her wheelchair out in the sunshine. I sat down beside her, and we talked. She told me about her son with Downs Syndrome who passed away when he was almost 20 years old. She talked about grief and dealing with what life brings.
“You can’t fight life,” she told me. Those words rang true for me as I had been struggling against my own life and the changes time had wrought.
The second woman from the nursing home that I carry in my heart is Sylvia. She would scoot down the hall in her wheelchair, using her feet to propel herself. Whenever she’d see me, she’d smile and throw her arms open for a hug.
When I visited her room, she’d show me her angel collection—pillows, statues, and pictures—and give me Tootsie Rolls to take home to my children. Her positive outlook amazed me.
Once she handed me a piece of paper that she’d torn it out of the nursing home newsletter. “This made me think of you,” she said.
It contained a quote by an anonymous writer: “Some people come into our lives and go quickly. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts. And we are never ever the same.”
I was touched beyond words. Sylvia warmed my heart at every visit. I never imagined she felt the same.
These lovely ladies are gone now, but they have truly left their footprints on my heart. And the profound lessons they taught me have become a part of me: take time to really be with someone, pray through all life’s situations, know when to keep your opinions to yourself, flow with life instead of against it, and let others know how you feel about them.
These important messages we could all hear if we would just take time to listen to the wisdom of the women in our lives.

Habits For Health Rejuvenation

July 17, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education, Health and Wellness

Habits For Health Rejuvenation
Dr Kathleen Hartford Author Fit, Fun and Fabulous At Any Age

1. Be certain to adequately hydrate your body. Just as you cleanse the outside of your body you must also clean the inside. To ensure you are getting adequate amounts of water calculate 2/3rds of your body weight in ounces or .66 X your weight. Not everybody can reach this goal overnight however make it your target number and you will be rewarded with increased energy, vitality and health! Be certain to utilize filtered water, our tap water is filled with pollutants from industrial chemicals to pharmaceutical drugs which our purification facilities cannot remove.

2. Healthy eating in a restaurant can sometimes be a challenge, to ensure the healthiest meal follow these guidelines:
• Order a double order of vegetables or salad rather than the potatoes, pasta or bread that is offered.
• If having a soup stick to clear broth soups and avoid the hidden fats of cream based soups
• If having a large salad either bring a light dressing from home or have the dressing on the side. Simply dip each bite lightly into the dressing and you will be amazed how little you actually consume. Lemon squeezed onto a salad is often times enough flavoring to substitute as a dressing
• If out for Chinese opt for the vegetable stir-fries, when adding a protein turkey, chicken or seafood is your best choice.

3. Be aware of subtle weight gain around your mid section for both yourself and your children. This could be an indicator that you and your children are experiencing accelerated aging due to metabolic syndrome.

People with metabolic syndrome are at increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, peripheral vascular disease and Type 2 diabetes. Metabolic syndrome has become increasingly common in the United States; an estimated 80 million Americans have it. This syndrome is characterized by a group of metabolic risk factors that occur in a person. They include:
• Abdominal obesity (fat tissue in and around the abdomen)
• High blood fats, high triglycerides and high LDL cholesterol
• Low HDL cholesterol
• Elevated blood pressure

To ensure that you and your loved ones do not fall prey to this health destroying syndrome be certain to avoid simple sugars and processed carbohydrates. Follow this guidelines for a healthy plate; have your protein portion be the size of the palm of your hand and allow the rest of your plate to be filled with vegetables and low glycemic complex carbohydrates.

Rather than having sugar laden sweets after dinner enjoy a warm cup of caffeine free tea or a small serving of fruit or nuts, in fact dates combined with pecans are wonderful and quickly filling. They taste just like pecan pie without the calories and excess sugar!

4. Regular Exercise is the true fountain of youth. It is the one activity that will positively affect ALL of the Biomarkers Of Aging. Biomarkers of aging are measurements that indicate how quickly your body is aging of the cellular level. As we age typically lose 6.2 pounds of muscle each decade this rate of loss accelerates after the age of 45. We also lose about 30 percent of our muscle cells between the ages of 20 and 70. The loss of both muscle cells and muscle mass adversely affects so many areas of our health, including:
• Decreased blood sugar tolerance
• Declining metabolism
• Increased body fat
• Reduced aerobic capacity
• Loss of bone mineral density
Sounds like a bit of a bummer, right? Well only if you are a committed
couch potato. Studies prove that with the right exercise, individuals in their sixth, seventh, eighth and even ninth decade of life can expect improvements in strength and muscle cell size comparable to younger people doing the same amount of exercise. For women, this is especially good news in the area of osteoporosis (Bone Health is assessed in Biomarker 10). This is why so much emphasis is given to physical activity and strength training when we are committed to reversing the accelerated aging process!

5. Consider utilizing a Medical Food and specific formulations of targeted nutrients:
Imagine new generations of Medical foods that are scientifically-based for the management of specific health conditions associated with type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), chronic fatigue syndrome, and more.

These medical foods along with an anti-inflammatory diet were shown in clinical studies to reduce Total Cholesterol by 16%, triglycerides by 45%, increase good cholesterol by 6%, improved fasting insulin by 25%. It lowered body fat by an average of 15 pounds and supported a 5 pound increase in lean muscle mass. And best of all there were NO side effects except, of course, a measurable increase in health!

Consider starting your day with one of these medical foods as your breakfast. It’s quick, it’s easy and it’s a great start toward rejuvenating your health! For more information on Medical foods visit www.drkathleenhartford.com


Women with Assets Demand Inclusive Company Boards, By Heather Arnet

July 17, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education



Women are scarce on the corporate boards of leading companies; just 15 percent. As shareholders and networkers we can apply financial and social pressure to change that.

Women may be only 15 percent of corporate boards on Fortune 500 companies, despite what we’ve known for a long time: Women make 85 percent of the purchasing decisions about the products and services offered by those companies.

Journalist Amaya Gorostiaga, in an article in Business for Social Responsibility, writes that women control $20 trillion globally in annual consumer spending, a number that could hit $28 trillion in five years.

Facts like that rumbled into the annual meeting of the Women’s Funding Network earlier this year and electrified the global alliance of 166 non-profits that invest in women and girls.

It led us to consider a key question: Why not apply a gender lens to for-profit investing? Why not leverage our shares of stock to advocate for more women on boards?

Hundreds of women who lead women’s organizations and foundations were in the room. Many have personal assets and own stocks, which means they have an ownership stake in the companies that can be used as a tool for advocacy.

They also have information: In 2004 the Securities and Exchange Commission began requiring publicly traded companies to disclose in their proxy statements details about the director recruitment process.

Jacki Zehner, a former partner at Goldman Sachs, and Joe Keefe, president and CEO of Pax World Funds, led the discussion, which focused on bottom-line reasons to invest in companies that include women on their boards.

By the end, Zehner and Keefe urged shareholders to vote no on all-male corporate board slates.

“We can withhold support for all-male director slates, or instruct whoever is voting our proxies to withhold such support,” Zehner said. “If enough investors ask this of their investment advisers–or their retirement plan administrators at work, or their mutual fund managers–then we can begin to make a difference. In fact, if we each wrote a letter to the companies, and enclosed it with our proxy ballot, letting them know why we are saying ‘no’ to their board slates, the companies we own would begin to get the picture.”

Headaches Are Not All In Your head

July 01, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

By Mary Jo Smiley CMTPT, LMT

Jane had been involved in a relatively minor motor vehicle accident causing a whiplash injury to her neck. She was hit from behind and suffered head and neck pain right away. Within days she was experiencing severe headaches or migraines and went to her doctor. Jane felt that she was not getting much relief with over the counter medications. She was reluctant to use prescription drugs, but accepted the prescription from her doctor for stronger pain meds, but still got very little relief from the headaches.

She asked about massage because she had heard a friend rave about how well having trigger point therapy helped! Her Doctor was skeptical, but agreed. Medical massage is covered by most auto insurance companies.

Lets look at why treating the trigger points is so effective, non-invasive, empowering and should be considered for the first line treatment and not “last resort”.

An in-depth evaluation including an extensive review of medical history, details of the accident and Range of Motion tests should be part of the first session. We look for specific tender areas and restriction in muscles indicating the presence of trigger points. Trigger points are a hypersensitive “knots” of pain in a muscle that restricts range of motion, referring pain in a predictable pattern (usually) away from the site of the trigger point.

Consistent with a whiplash injury, many upper back and neck muscles were involved, two most prominently. One, the trapezius (illustration A) refers a very familiar pain pattern up the back of the neck and into the temples. The sternocleidomastoid (SCM for short) was the other. (Illustration B) These muscles check-reins excessive forward and backward motion of the head, which often happens in a whiplash injury.

The Upper Trapezius muscle usually has trigger points in it. The common pain pattern is the classic tension headache, up the back of the neck and into the temples. Almost ALL tension headaches are the pain pattern of this muscle.

The SCM can produce pain but in addition, this muscle often mimics; the symptoms of a migraine headache including tearing of the eyes, runny nose, nausea, dizziness, loss of balance and blurring vision.

After appropriate treatment with Myofascial Trigger Point Therapy, Jane no longer had head and neck pain. All of the symptoms of the migraine headaches were resolved. In addition, she is no longer getting frequent “tension headaches” and knows what to do when she feel on coming on!

Trigger points are not always caused by trauma, most of the time they are caused by every day improper posture, repetitive motion, head forward postures while working or driving, old injuries (even 20 years ago or more), and a multitude other factors.

Have chronic headaches or migraines?
Tired of hearing it’s all in your head?
Call our office and set up a free consultation.
Mary Jo Smiley CMTPT, LMT at Advanced Bodywork, Massage and Yoga might be able to help!

July Events

July 01, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

June 24 – July 3 - Into the Woods, a Tony Award-winning musical by Stephen Sondheim, interweaves the stories of our favorite storybook characters, but with a painfully poignant twist.

This charming musical tale touches on themes of growing up, accepting responsibility and the consequences of having your wishes come true. When Cinderella, Jack, Little Red Riding Hood and friends get what they wish for, “Happily Ever After” isn’t exactly what they expected it to be – tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for children and students with ID

6 Allegheny Square East
Pittsburgh Pa 15212

July 4 - Jane Neely Run for Your Life Relay 5K Race - 8:30am Kiwanis Park – for more information visit http://www.shaler.org/site/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=97&Itemid=253

July 8 - Butler-Women’s Power Lunch – Join us for our kick-off networking luncheon for the ladies in the Butler area! Enjoy a great lunch and some warm networking with local women business professionals. Contact: suzanne@womenspowerlunch.com  or 724-452-5152 for more details
on prepayment – 1 pm – 3pm – Butler Country Club, 310 Country Club, Butler

July 8 - WOMEN’S NETWORKING LUNCHEON – Noon - South Hills Country Club - Lunch for Chamber Members - $15 - Bring a friend! - Lunch for Non-Members - $18 - Display Table $10 - Please make a reservation by contacting our secretary: Mary Dilla at: 412-884-1233 / secretary@bbwchamber.com  - Next Women’s Network Meeting Friday, August 12th

- July 9 - South Sudan is slated to become the world’s newest nation. But escalating violence in the border regions of Sudan and continuing instability in Darfur threaten the peaceful march towards independence – tearing apart families and displacing thousands of innocent civilians. We’ve asked you to take action to stop the violence – now we need your help to raise awareness and show solidarity with the people of Sudan on July 9th – visit https://secure3.convio.net/sdc/site/Donation2?idb=0&df_id=2300&2300.donation=form1&autologin=true&JServSessionIdr004=c5kab7g5×9.app332b  to donate today.

- July 8 and 9 – Jude Pohl Presents two special events featuring two of Pittsburgh’s finest entertainers – Laura Paterra in Broadway Then and Now - Krista Kaley in Krista Exposed – July 22 and 23 – Cabaret Dinner Theater (across from South Hills Village) – call 724-746-1178 for reservations

July 11 - PYGF “Take Your Daughter to the Course” Day - 5:30pm - 9:00pm
For registration forms or more information, call 412-363-3112 - reneabrams@aol.com

July 12 - 2011 Leadership Luncheon Series -11:30am - Rivers Club - http://www.facebook.com/n/?event.php&eid=210349332337412&mid=45ae1c4G3d5b9223G24b1565G7&bcode=aGOsj1UI&n_m=wip%40fastmail.fm  for additional info

July 12 - CWE Open House – 5 pm – 7 pm - Come meet our staff, facilitators, and past participants- register for any program on the day of the open house to receive 10% off! - http://www.chatham.edu/cwe/events/openhouse/  to register.

July 13 - Brown Bag Lunch - 12:00 – 1:00pm - Speaker: Jane Sarra, JBS Business Advisors, specializes in executive coaching and business consulting - Topic: Creating Your Personal Brand - It is time to launch “YOU” as the new product brand. Join this discussion about how to introduce who you are, what you offer and how exceptional you are in an upbeat, enthusiastic 10-second handshake pitch or a 30-second elevator pitch. Know that you are leaving your audience with enough to spark their interest. This workshop will help you perfect your branding pitch - Volunteers of America of Pennsylvania - 1650 Main Street Pittsburgh – FREE - RSVP: 412.782.5344 x 209 or volunteersofamerica@voapa.org.

July 15 - Pittsburgh-Women’s Power Lunch - 1pm – 3pm - Grand Concourse–Station Square - Come and enjoy lunch and business networking in grand style at this beautiful historic restaurant located right on the river. Summer is a great time to visit the shops and attractions in Station Square. Please RSVP me at suzanne@womenspowerlunch.com or prepay online at www.womenspowerlunch.com.

July 19 – Pittsburgh Job Fair – 11 am – 2 pm – Pittsburgh Marriott – 112 Washington Place Pittsburgh - http://www.coasttocoastcareerfairs.com/career_fairs/details/PA/Pittsburgh/Pittsburgh_register_0711.html  to register

July 21 - Disability Resource Breakfast - 8:30 – 9:30 AM - Speaker: Lindsey Smith, Health Coach at The Real You - Topic: The Real You, Your Relationship with Food - Learn how you can create a happy, healthy life time relationship with food and nutrition that is flexible, fun and free of denial. Find the food and lifestyle choices that best support your desire to make gradual, sustainable changes and best enable you to reach your current and future health goals - Volunteers of America of Pennsylvania, 1650 Main Street Pittsburgh – FREE - RSVP: 412.782.5344 x 209 or volunteersofamerica@voapa.org.

Women’s Power Lunch—Westmoreland County (NEW!!)
July 22, 2011
1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Solstice Restaurant
911 Green St. Greensburg, PA15601
Cost: $30.00 (Prepayment Required)
RSVP: Melanieansell@comcast.net
Online Payment: www.womenspoweerlunch.com

July 22- Clever Connections Networking Lunch - 1-3pm - Peter’s Place in Bridgeville - Register Online: www.PittsburghProfessionalWomen.com

July 22-24 - Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank has completed the 2011 musical line-up for the Pittsburgh Blues Festival, presented by First Commonwealth. The 17th Annual Festival is once again at Hartwood Acres - Tedeschi Trucks Band, Blues Caravan “Girls With Guitars” Lionel Young, John Nemeth, Tommy Castro, Johnny Winter - Visit the Blues website at www.pghblues.com  for ticket information; tickets are on sale now.

July 28 - North Shore - Join Pittsburgh Party for a Purpose……”hosting fun, creative and affordable parties for diverse young-minded individuals, while raising funds and generating support for nonprofit organizations in Southwestern Pennsylvania. July 28th’s PGH Party for a Purpose benefits Girls on the Run at Magee-Womens Hospital and Venture Outdoors. More details to come in our July e-newsletter, or check back at www.gotrmagee.org/events.

July 28 - Twelfth Night on July 28th. As you know, Quantum is known for bringing theatre to unusual places all over Pittsburgh, and Twelfth Night will be no exception. Full of music and staged outdoors in Bloomfield, under the Millvale Street Bridge - Each show has a Ladies Night scheduled for the First Wednesday of each production: Wed, Aug 3; Wed, Oct 12; Wed Dec 7 – Call Showclix 1-888-71.TICKETS if you have any questions or to reserve your tickets - http://www.quantumtheatre.com/twelfthnight  - To save over 20% of the single ticket price per show Subscribe now to the above dates.

July 31 - South Park Theatre Gala at Nevillewood - $45/person. Complete details on the first page of the website http://www.southparktheatre.com/.

We are holding our annual “evening with the stars” fundraiser this summer and if you can make a donation (a gift card, a product, etc.) for our silent auction, it would be greatly apprecited. The proceeds of the auction go toward offsetting our production costs.

Our annual budget is $125,000 so as a grant committee member once told me “you do so much on so little!” Your donation would have a huge impact on maintaining the vitality of our theatre and continuing our mission of providing quality, affordable theatre to children and adults in the region. (We charge only $2 admission for our children’s theatre shows and only $12 for our Main Stage shows so our theatre is very accessible to all.) Please mail your donation (it’s tax deductible!) to Pat Kaley, Scott Towne Center, Suite A-113, 2101 Greentree Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15220, and note that it is for the South Park Theatre Gala.

August 1 - Clever Connections Networking Dinner - How to Create a Video Media Kit For Your Website with Special Guest Speaker Gina Catanzarite, Emmy Award Winning TV Producer - 6-8pm - BRAVO! Robinson Township 211 Summit Park Drive, Pittsburgh, Register Online at www.PittsburghProfessionalWomen.com.

August 13 - Small Business Basics Workshop – 8:30 am – 12 - This half-day workshop is designed for women interested in starting or expanding a business and covers small business legal, marketing, and financial issues.

August 17 - FOR WOMEN WHO WINE - Please Join The Musuneggi Financial Group & Single Steps Strategies for an Evening Of Wine, Conversation, Networking & Education While we are “Wine-ing” down the summer - 6:00 PM -Crowne Plaza Hotel South, 164 Fort Couch Road Bethel Park – No Cost But Donations To “Dress for Success” Are Always Welcome - Guest Speaker: Mike Gonze, Dreadnought Wines - To register for you and your guest log onto www.singlestepsstrategies.com , e-mail info@singlestepsstrategies.com  or call 412-341-2888. Registration deadline is August 8th - Seating is limited so register early.


August 26 -Celebrate & Share Bonnie DiCarlo and JoAnn R. Forrester Invite you to the
3rd Annual Breakfast at the Rivers Club - Celebrate the passage of the 19th Amendment! - Oxford Centre Downtown, Pittsburgh -7:45 am - 9:30 am
Donation - $35 Birthday August 26? FREE! Honorary Sponsors- $91.00
Table of 10: $350 - Bonnie DiCarlo: bonnie255@aol.com  412-480-5247, JoAnn Forrester: selfimagebz@aol.com  412.440.6969

August 26 - Do you enjoy golfing? Maybe you enjoy relaxing by the pool or pampering yourself at a spa. Are you adventurous? Is rock climbing or off-road driving more your style? Join us and all that the Five Star Resort, Nemacolin Woodlands, has to offer! Registration is now open for Womansplace 18th Annual Golf Event to End Domestic Violence! Sponsorships, Golf & Special Packages are available now! Advertising opportunities are also available for those who would like to donate items for the live auction! http://womansplace.org -All proceeds benefit crisis intervention programs for victims of domestic violence and teen dating violence prevention programs!

September 1-4 - Pittsburgh Delegation to the 2011 One Young World Summit - Zurich, Switzerland
Bringing together and connecting the best and brightest young leaders from around the globe to address major global challenges
Launched in 2010 in London, One Young World is the premier global forum for young leaders from around the world. One hundred highly recognized global corporations sponsored or sent young leaders to the conference, which has been referred to by CNN as the “Young Davos.”
To apply, candidates must:
• Complete the registration form
• Submit a personal statement (of no more than one page in length) which outlines what the candidate can contribute at the Summit and how the candidate hopes to benefit personally and professionally from attending the Summit.
• Provide a current resume and/or narrative biography.
• Submit two letters of reference from people who can assess the candidate’s personal and professional qualities. (Ideally, one letter should be from an employer and one from the leader of an area non-profit.)
• Agree to use Social Media to share experiences during and after the Summit.
Candidates should email their application to oyw@worldpittsburgh.org  by Thursday, June 30, 2011.
Candidates will be notified if they have been selected by Friday, July 15, 2011.
For more information about One Young World, please see www.oneyoungworld.com.
For more information about being a part of Pittsburgh’s delegation to the One Young World Summit in Zurich, please contact oyw@worldpittsburgh.org.

Pre-registrations for this even must be received by August 15th, 2011 to
ensure receipt of free event T-Shirt

The Westmoreland Yough Trail Chapter of the Regional Trail Corporation will hold its Seventeenth Annual Poker Run on Labor Day. The walking/biking non-competitive event will start at the Arthur H. King Access Area of the Youghiogheny River Trail in West Newton. Proceeds from this fundraiser will be used by trail volunteers to maintain, preserve and enhance the Youghiogheny River Trail section of the Great Allegheny Passage.

The Poker Run consists of three events: 1). A walking, jogging, wheelchair optional, four mile flat course. 2). A level 12 mile bike ride that runs south along the Youghiogheny River to Smithton Beach and back. 3). An endurance 20 mile bike ride that runs south along the Youghiogheny River Trail to Whitsett and back. All cyclists are required to wear an ANSI or SNELL approved helmet.

The Poker Run is not a race. Participants walk or ride at their own pace taking as little time, or up to two hours, to finish their course. At checkpoints throughout the course participants will pick a playing card to develop a poker hand. At the end of the course each poker hand is tallied and the person with the best hand in each of the three events receives a cash prize award. Afterwards a raffle is conducted and all participants are eligible to win more than 75 door prizes of various kinds and values that have been donated by regional businesses and merchants who support the trail and what the trail brings to our area. A mountain bike is the grand prize give away. There will also be a half-the-take drawing.

October 8 - Teal Ribbon Comedy, An Ovarian Cancer Research Benefit - Stage AE, 400 North Shore Dr., Pittsburgh - 6:30 p.m. - Pittsburgh’s own Billy Gardell, star of the CBS hit show “Mike & Molly,” headlines “Teal Ribbon Comedy”, an Ovarian Cancer Research Benefit.- Proceeds will benefit ovarian cancer research being conducted at Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC and Magee-Womens Research Institute - Contact: Denise Wickline, 412-641-8950 - Tickets: $30-$50 Website url: http://www.mwrif.org/384/teal-ribbon-comedy.


Congratulations to the SoleMate runners who participated in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon, UPMC Health Plan Half Marathon, and FedEx Ground Relay. These dedicated runners have raised over $8,000 for Girls on the Run at Magee-Womens Hospital. With 2 weeks left in their campaign, visit http://www.active.com/donate/SoleMates2011/magee  today to help support our mission to “educate and prepare girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living.”

The entire staff behind the 2011 Pennsylvania Conference for Women are grateful for your involvement as a supporting organization and your commitment to helping us build awareness and enthusiasm for the event! Please visit www.paconferenceforwomen.org  or call 512-432-1943 for more information

The Place for Reiki, 139 Steuben Street, Ste. 100 Pittsburgh, 412-920-2911 - the-place-for-reiki@earthlink.net - Visit http://www.the-place-for-reiki.com/  for the complete schedule of classes for July to September

New International Treaty Will Protect Domestic Workers

July 01, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

Women’s Law Project Western Pennsylvania, 401 Wood Street, Suite 1020, Pittsburgh, PA 15222 (412-281-2892) infopitt@womenslawproject.org.

On June 16th The International Labor Organization (ILO) adopted the Convention on Domestic Workers, a treaty which will guarantee the labor rights of domestic workers around the globe. “Domestic workers” includes any workers who work in or for a household or households such as nannies, chauffeurs, and housekeepers. Human Rights Watch states that of the estimated 50 to 100 million domestic workers worldwide, “the vast majority are women and girls.” 7.5% of female employees worldwide work in the domestic sphere.

Many countries do not provide the protections to domestic workers that they afford those employed in other fields. For this reason, domestic workers face “a wide range of grave abuses and labor exploitation.” It is believed that in many countries these human rights violations are allowed to continue due to a lack of legal protections exacerbated by discrimination against women and girls.

“Discrimination against women and poor legal protections have allowed abuses against domestic workers to flourish in every corner of the world,” said Nisha Varia, senior women’s rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. “This new convention is a long overdue recognition of housekeepers, nannies, and caregivers as workers who deserve respect and equal treatment under the law.”

The new treaty demands that domestic workers have some of the basic labor rights that those who work in other spheres already enjoy. These rights include: “reasonable hours of work, weekly rest of at least 24 consecutive hours, a limit on in-kind payment, clear information on terms and conditions of employment, as well as respect for fundamental principles and rights at work including freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining.”

The treaty applies to all domestic workers, including migrant workers and child laborers who are especially vulnerable to labor rights abuses. Migrant workers, who compose a large proportion of those employed in the domestic sphere, “are often at heightened risk of exploitation due to national policies that link workers’ immigration status to individual employers as well as excessive recruitment fees, language barriers, and employers’ confiscation of passports.” The Convention on Domestic Workers demands that migrant workers receive a contract that is enforceable in the country in which they are employed and calls for national governments to strengthen international cooperation.

The Treaty also helps children, who make up nearly 30% of all domestic workers worldwide. Prior to the convention, many national governments excluded domestic work from child labor laws, meaning that some children worked long hours at young ages. The treaty sets a minimum age for domestic work and ensures that work does not interfere with the education of children above that age.

The United States played a leading role in advocating for strong protections of domestic workers in the treaty and was one of the 396 out of 475 delegates who voted for the convention. However, it is unlikely that the U.S. will ratify the convention as labor laws are primarily regulated by states and this convention would require numerous federal regulations. This is unfortunate as currently New York is the only state which has enacted a domestic workers’ bill of rights.

But despite the fact that the convention is unlikely to change federal law in the U.S., the increased awareness that the treaty will bring could prove beneficial.

The importance of this convention is to bring the plight of domestic workers into the national spotlight, not necessarily changing U.S. laws, said Ana Avendano, the assistant to the president at the AFL-CIO, who also participated in the ILO conference. In many parts of the world, domestic workers are explicitly excluded from labor laws and standards, she said.

“What happens to many workers in most cases is already illegal,” Avendano said. “When these workers complain about their conditions, now people are going to listen”

The International Labor Organization’s Convention on Domestic Workers has the potential to give labor protections to millions of domestic workers around the world, the majority of which are women and girls. While the convention will not necessarily change U.S. law, it will likely increase awareness about the issue of labor exploitation and encourage people to respect and utilize existing laws which protect domestic workers. While the convention will not eradicate human rights violations of domestic workers, the international recognition of the need for domestic workers to be afforded the same rights as other workers is a step in the right direction.

The Works of Anne Bradstreet, Review by Kathryn Atwood

July 01, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

Led by Jeannine Hensley, Foreword by Adrienne Rich
Publisher: John Harvard Library
Review by Kathryn Atwood

Anne Bradstreet is generally considered to be the first serious poet of the American colonies and one of its first female writers. Born in England in 1612, Bradstreet was raised and educated in a comfortable English home before traveling to the New World when she was 16 to seek religious freedom: she and her family were Puritans. Her poems, written in New England and distributed among family members, were taken to England in 1650 for publication without Bradstreet’s knowledge. A second edition, with additional poems (and Bradstreet’s blessing) was published during her lifetime and then a third, with still additional poems, was published posthumously.

Finally, a fourth edition was published in 1867 which included previously unpublished Bradstreet writings known as the Andover Collection. The current John Harvard Library edition, a reprint of its definitive 1967 collection, includes all previously published material as well as an updated bibliography and a Bradstreet chronology.

Understanding the initial poems in this collection is greatly enhanced by the foreword and introduction (by Adrienne Rich and Jeanine Hensley, respectively) which explain that Bradstreet was trying to keep her English education alive in the colonial wilderness by writing extremely long, erudite poems having little to do with her surroundings: “The Four Elements,” “Of the Four Humours,” “Of the Four Ages,” “Of the Four Seasons,” and “The Four Monarchies.”

The first edition also included a fairly lengthy poem praising, in great detail, the reign of Queen Elizabeth while it simultaneously questions the unfairness of gender issues:

. . . Now say, have women worth? Or have they none?
Or had they some, but with our Queen is gone?
Nay masculines, you have thus taxed us long,
But she, though dead, will vindicate our wrong.
Let such as say our sex if void of reason,
Know ‘tis a slander now but once was treason.

Apart from several fascinating poems such as this one, many of Bradstreet’s early works, appreciated at the time of their publication, suffer a bit of a disconnect from 21st century readers, especially the lengthy ones previously mentioned. But these writings were apparently essential preparations for the more strikingly personal poems that followed, those that are most often anthologized and known in this century by students of early American literature, such as “To My Dear and Loving Husband,” a poem originally published in the third collection:

If ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever man were loved by wife, then thee;
If ever wife was happy in a man,
Compare with me, ye women, if you can.
I prize thy love more than whole mines of gold
Or all the riches that the East doth hold . . .

Another poem from this collection called “Before the Birth of One of Her Children” reveals Bradstreet’s fear of death only because it means parting from her loved ones:

. . . If any worth of virtue were in me,
Let that live freshly in they memory
And when thou feel’st no grief, as I no harms,
Yet love thy dead, who long lay in thine arms.
And when thy loss shall be repaid with gains
Look to my little babes, my dear remains.
And if thou love thyself, or loved’st me,
These O protect from step-dame’s injury . . .

“In Memory of My Dear Grandchild Anne Bradstreet” shows the tension Bradstreet often felt between her love for life and her Christian beliefs:

. . . More fool then I to look on that was lent
As if mine own, when thus impermanent.
Farewell dear child, thou ne’er shall come to me,
But yet a while, and I shall go to thee;
Mean time my throbbling heart’s cheered up with this:
Thou with thy Saviour art in endless bliss.

Bradstreet’s theological beliefs are further documented in the Andover Collection (the last section of the current edition) and contains various poems and prose, the first of which, “To My Dear Children,” documents Bradstreet’s spiritual odyssey meant to be read after she had died: “The method I will observe shall be this: I will begin with God’s dealing with me from my childhood to this day.”

“The Words of Anne Bradstreet” places all of Bradstreet’s writings clearly within her biographical framework and as such is the definitive tool for understanding this important colonial poet.

Call For Social Justice Films

July 01, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

The mission of the Building Change Film Festival is to open the viewer’s eyes to the injustices that we see in the world by screening films that will celebrate struggle, shed light on these injustices, and show us possibilities for a better future.

We are looking for feature length, mid, and short films (25 minutes or less) themed around social justice issues, preferably those that have relevance to Southwestern Pennsylvania. This is open to a full range of issues including; the environment, poverty, LGBTQ issues, racial and gender equality, prison/police reform, food justice, peace and human rights issues. Ideal films will demonstrate the power and value of filmmaking as a vehicle for exploration of social justice issues and will motivate viewers to seek solutions and promote change. There is no age limit and all genres will be considered. We are requesting recently made films from 2009 to present.

Selection will be based on technical quality, relevance to local social justice issues, and the Festival objective of including a diverse range of issues.
Films will be screened at several venues across Pittsburgh during this 5-day film festival. The Building Change Film Festival is one of the major components of Building Change: a Convergence for Social Justice that will be held October 13-15, 2011 at the Sen. John Heinz Regional History Center. The Convergence is a grassroots, movement building conference with participatory workshops at which participants will learn about current issues and share their skills to make real impact. For more information about Building Change, visit www.buildingchangewpa.org.

The early submission deadline is July 15th, 2011.
The late deadline is August 10th, 2011.
Regional Short Film Submissions:
Building Change is also interested in seeing short films of local or regional relevance created strictly for the Convergence. We are seeking films 25 minutes or less that are created by people living in Southwestern Pennsylvania, and focusing on relevant social justice issues in this region. Please tell us about your idea for a short film below, along with any information (title, run time, etc.) you have and then plan on submitting your short film for review by August 31, 2011
For information on how to submit, please visit http://trcfwpa.org/building-change-film-festival
Aurora Matthews
100 N. Braddock Ave Ste. 302
Pittsburgh PA. 15208
(412) 243-9250

9 Money Saving Tips at the Pump

July 01, 2011 By: admin Category: Consumer Education

By Anne fleming

Road trip season has begun. With many of us watching our spending, we will inevitably feel the “pump pain” of filling the tank as the price is approaching almost $4 per gallon, with some service stations already topping $4.

With the price of gas reaching all time highs, the traditional American road trip will be more costly than ever. For those who choose to drive, you can cut down on gas consumption by taking a shorter route, or simply plan a getaway that’s a shorter distance away. Online sources such as AAA’s regional fuel cost calculator will provide you the estimated fuel cost of your journey.

Here are some further tips from www.Women-Drivers.com for saving money particularly on road trips, and being savvy about making the most of your gas:

1. Give yourself plenty of time so you can ease up on the pedal.
Speeding and quick acceleration can lower your gas mileage by
33% at highway speeds.
2. Avoid heavy traffic (which leads to idling), by researching and planning your route ahead of time. Be aware of construction zones by going online first, or utilizing Google Maps on your smart phone for road conditions in major cities.
3. Make use of the dozens of gas apps on smart phones, which guide you to find cheap gas while on the road.
4. Keep luggage and items packed inside the car instead of strapped on top of the roof, to decrease aerodynamic drag. According to fueleconomy.gov, a loaded roof rack can decrease your fuel economy by 5%.
5. Fill with regular fuel rather than premium. Also, find a gas station that uses little or no ethanol, which is reported to get you only half as far as a tank of gasoline alone.
6. Use the manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil for your vehicle, which improves your gas mileage.
7. Use “overdrive” when travelling at a high enough speed, so the engine operates at fewer RPMs which in turn, uses less gas.
8. Charge up your electronic, mobile phone or other tech gadgets at home first instead of using your car battery, which drains the gas. While on the road, try to use other outlets for charging.
9. If you’re able, wait until your gas tank is down to a quarter full before you refuel. Driving on an emptier tank equals a lighter weight car, which increases your fuel economy.
Every little bit helps. Changing your driving habits can let you keep money in your wallet to spend on other activities.