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Fall gardening is not the only productive thing gardeners can do as the season begin to change. I typically use the transition from summer to fall as a great opportunity to reflect and prepare. Depending on my harvest, seed stock, and circumstances, I tend to do all or some of my typical tasks. Here are 5 tasks you can consider to help you navigate gardening this year better.

Prep Herb Collection and/or Stock Up

As your spring/summer herbs are coming to an end, you should consider storing and stocking up on herbs you would like to use throughout the winter. I like to take my last large harvest and air dry them in a dark room (pantry for me) and store in an air tight container for summer use. Most herbs can last anywhere form months to a year in such containers. My family and I use such herbs to help boost our immune system during the cold and flu season, plus we love cooking with herbs.

Prepare For The Next Gardening Season

Honestly, I love gardening so much that I can’t help but plan the next season before I’ve finished the current one. This break is the prefect time to think about what and how you wish to grow the upcoming season. I like to purchase seeds, schedule seed starting dates, and check last frost dates. Being a season ahead, position you to get the most out of your growing season.

Start A Fall Garden

Gardening doesn’t end after your summer garden has reach its peak. You can totally stat a garden in cooler weather – actually some plant prefer it. Plants in the brassica family such as broccoli and cabbage love cooler weather and taste better after light frost. Also, root veggies do extremely well in the fall.

Prune Back For Over Wintering

I typically cut back herbs like oregano, thyme, and mint to overwinter and so they can emerge again in the spring time. This saves me a ton on repurchasing herbs or even attempting to grow them from seed. Try researching which plants you grow can be overwintered in your hardiness zone.

Review Your Previous Growing Season

One of my favorite thing to do is reflect over my garden journal! I enjoy knowing what I did wrong or what did I take note to change next season. I truly believe this is where I become a better gardener – taking note of what worked, what didn’t, what bugs I experienced, weather, and all of the above.

 

Read the full article by Black Girls with Gardens @ http://www.blackgirlswithgardens.com/5-things-every-gardener-should-do-this-fall/

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Classy Living Society brought community service to a whole new level recently as several volunteers joined forces across the U.S. to serve in their local communities!  Saturday, November 7 was all about making a difference as members partnered with seven nonprofit organizations around the country.

In Atlanta, members volunteered in various locations around town.  At the City of Johns Creek’s Household Hazardous Waste Event 2020, volunteers assisted by checking in customers, directing the flow of traffic, and distributing snacks and water to other volunteers.  Hazardous Waste Day is hosted by Keep North Fulton Beautiful, an environmental nonprofit that provides education and conservation programs to the Georgia communities of Johns Creek and Sandy Springs.  Their mission is to educate and activate their communities in the beautification and conservation of the environment.  

Across town, volunteers helped out with assembling boxes of groceries filled to the brim with meats, veggies, bread, snacks, juices and other goodies for distribution at the Reflections of Trinity Food Pantry in Powder Springs, Georgia.  Reflections of Trinity distributes grocery boxes to feed approximately 400 families on a weekly basis and provides essential needs and services to those in need.  

CLS also assisted at the food pantry at Salem Baptist Church in Lilburn, Georgia.  Volunteers were charged with the task of greeting clients and assisting them with paperwork, as well as sorting food, stocking shelves, preparing bags of food for distribution, helping clients carry food to vehicles, and general housekeeping and cleaning in the food preparation area.  

CLS worked in partnership with Hands on Atlanta to mobilize its volunteers for these three momentous Atlanta area events!  Hands on Atlanta helps individuals, families, and corporate and community groups connect with nonprofits and other organizations in need of volunteers.  It’s a partnership within a partnership!  Teamwork makes the dream work!

Tampa, Florida CLS members joined forces with Keep Pinellas Beautiful, a volunteer‐based, 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and a certified affiliate of Keep America Beautiful. From Tampa Bay to the Gulf of Mexico, from Tarpon Springs to Ft. DeSoto, Keep Pinellas Beautiful works with volunteers to foster unity and strengthen community bonds through improvement and beautification efforts across Pinellas County. Members picked up trash from designated locations along the beautiful coastline! 

Members in Northern California collected and dropped off wishlist items to support families housed at the Ronald McDonald House there.  Wish list items such as powdered laundry detergent, individually wrapped snacks, paper towels, dryer sheets, disinfecting wipes, and the like are items the House needs on a regular basis to provide for families living at the Ronald McDonald House.  RMHC has houses across America – each is a safe haven that provides all the comforts of home, plus the compassion and hospitality of the staff, volunteers, and other families — all just steps away from the area hospitals.  It is their mission to keep families together with children who are being cared for at these hospitals.  

Volunteers also provided community outreach in Houston, Texas!  Working together with the Houston Furniture Bank, members helped make empty houses homes for families in transition.  As distribution center helpers, CLS assisted and guided clients during their appointments with the Center, organized furniture, and helped families select essential furniture for their homes.  In its 28 years of services, Furniture Bank has helped 30,000 families by providing essential furniture to families, thanks to the support of the community. In 28 years of service, we have helped 30,000 families.

Spreading holiday cheer to seniors through the Meals on Wheels program! 5,000 seniors in the Houston/Galveston area rely on Meals on Wheels programs each day. These seniors are homebound and many times do not have family or friends to visit on Thanksgiving Day.  Volunteers assembled and delivered Thanksgiving holiday gift bags to Meals on Wheels to be distributed to the seniors containing toiletries, blankets, scarves, socks, hand sanitizer, playing cards, activity books, and much more!  The Meals on Wheels program provides home-delivered meals to approximately 4,900 homebound seniors and disabled adults in five counties in the Houston area – Harris, Galveston, Montgomery, Liberty, and Chambers. The program also delivers weekend meals and a week’s worth of breakfast to about a quarter of the area’s most frail and isolated clients. This nutritional support helps people stay independent and in their own homes, which is especially important during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Whew!  That was a lot of work for one day, but Classy Living Society never grows weary of carrying out its mission.  On the contrary, CLS thrives on its wonderful work in communities across America!  Giving is the heart of Classy Living Society – it’s who we are; it’s what we do!  And it’s always Classy!

Important web links:

Hands on Atlanta

Keep North Fulton Beautiful

Reflections of Trinity Food Pantry

Salem Missionary Baptist Church

Keep Pinellas Beautiful

Ronald McDonald House Charities – Northern California

Houston Furniture Bank

Meals on Wheels of Greater Houston

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There’s something wonderful about watching a good movie on the big screen.  But with movie theatres closed during the pandemic, this favorite family activity was all but set aside.  Then, the drive-in movie theatres opened …  and resurrected the days long ago when families would pull up to a big open drive-in theatre lot, install a speaker on the window of the car, and the whole family (and maybe even the dog!) would sit in the car or pile out to sit in lawn chairs to enjoy a flick!  Welcome back to movies under the stars!

Yes, watching movies outdoors is a magical experience. On September 12, CLS hosted Screen on the Green!  The initial plan was to enjoy a night of classic comedy movies on the lawn of the Taylor-Brawner House in Smyrna, Georgia.  But alas…the weather would not cooperate. With on and off rain throughout the windy afternoon and evening, Screen on the Green became Screen on the Wood!  Instead of setting up on the grass, the ladies set up their lawn chairs and blankets in the great room of the Taylor-Brawner House … but it was still a night of big fun!

The evening began with shopping with fabulous Black women-owned businesses who are also members of CLS!  Accessories, African wear, skincare, wedding services, books, and so many other items were offered for sale to the ladies.  While shopping, the ladies noshed on a variety of hot pizzas and wings, mingling and networking and sparking that sisterhood magic that CLS is so famous for conjuring up at their events!  Then, on to several announcements from CLS Founder LaShanda Pitts and the CLS Leadership team regarding CLS business and upcoming events, including the Red Dress Gala which is forthcoming in April 2021!  

Movies and games were next!  The first movie shown was Coming to America (such a classic comedy!), followed by Girl’s Trip (what better movie for a sisterhood to watch?!).  Many of the ladies headed out to the Taylor-Brawner House’s huge front porch to participate in a few fun games!  From Stack the Cups to Sort the Jelly Beans, it was all about the competition as the ladies broke off into Team Blue and Team Red!  The grand prize game was next – the Ping Pong Ball Tissue Box Challenge!  Each participant had an empty tissue box strapped to her waist, with the box facing backwards and each box was filled with ping pong balls.  The first person to twerk, wiggle, and shake all of the ping pong balls out of their tissue box was the winner!  These ladies worked hard to get those ping pong balls out of those boxes because the grand prize was a $250 Sephora Gift card!  Congrats to the grand prize winner, CLS member Abena Hutchins!  Then it was back inside for music and dancing – it’s just what we do!  

Of final note, but most importantly, you already know that CLS doesn’t do anything without a special giveback campaign.  CLS members collected a variety of baby items for donation to Helping Mamas!  As the baby supply bank of Georgia, Helping Mamas is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to come to the aid of mothers in need of assistance.  

Due to the pandemic, CLS had to cancel previous plans for a Helping Mamas giving event, so we showed up and showed out in true CLS giving fashion by donating a stockpile of items for Georgia babies! Helping Mamas accepts diapers, pull-ups, wipes, clothing, pacifiers, bibs, and all other things baby and toddler. 

If you are interested in donating items to Helping Mamas, take a look at their website at https://helpingmamas.org/ to see a full list of items they accept and how you can drop your donations off directly! 

Such an amazing event!  Movies, snacks, games, shopping, music and dancing, and sisterhood bonding … a great time was had by all!  

 

 

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The power of technology gathered 40 Classy Living Society members from Atlanta, Dallas, Tennessee, California, and Houston for a fun Saturday evening of laughter, wine sipping, sisterhood and art expression!  Hosted by CLS and facilitated by BE Creative Arts Center, the ladies painted for a cause via Zoom video on August 29.  “Release, Relax, Rejuvenate” was the painting of choice.  Wearing their artist hats, the ladies each painted their own rendering of RR&R – a sister girlfriend enjoying a leisurely soak, wine glass in hand, in a clawfoot bathtub overflowing with bubbles.  BE Creative Arts Center made it possible for each lady to create her own vision at home.  Upon advance registration, each artist received a “Paint Party to Go” packet containing a pre-drawn canvas, paints, brushes, and all of the supplies needed to create, create, create!

BE! Creative Arts Center is a Black woman-owned business in the Atlanta area that provides a creative way to have a party.  They provide mobile and virtual dance and paint parties for adults and children looking to have fun, express themselves creatively, socialize, and build relationships on location or via Zoom video.

The evening’s activities were for a worthy cause – a CLS fundraiser to raise money for the Homeless Population.  For each registration, CLS donated dollars to this worthy cause and collected a total of $1,100 to donate!  

A night of sisterhood bonding, socializing, wine, laughter, and a beautiful painting for each lady to hang on her wall – and all in the name of community service! 

 

Website link:

BE! Creative Arts Center

 

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The spotlight’s on our Oh So Classy member Jeanette Whipple!

She’s part of a core group of ladies who’ve decided to engage with Classy Living Society on the highest membership level…the Oh So Classy level.

Jeanette is originally from Paterson, New Jersey. She’s lived in Georgia for the past 20 years, so she definitely calls the Peach State her home. Jeanette’s been happily married to the love of her life for 12 beautiful years, and even though she has no children, she does have a lovely pet Shih Tzu named Jada. Jeanette served in the Armed Forces for seven years and is now a U.S. Armed Forces veteran who served in the Gulf War. We thank Jeanette for her service to this country. She is the youngest of a fantastic family of six.

Jeanette has had a remarkable career in the Information Technology (IT) industry for over 30 years, and she recently achieved a dream of hers by becoming an entrepreneur. She established a Real Estate Investing LLC.

Jeanette has an extreme love for travel. Her adventures have taken her to Spain, London, Aruba, Barbados, Rome, Cabo San Lucas, Grand Cayman Islands, Dominican Republic, Saudi Arabia, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Puerta Vallarta, Acapulco, Cozumel, Cancun, Bahamas, Hawaii, St. Thomas and many other exciting destinations.

Along with amazing travel comes amazing cuisine! Some of the most memorable dishes she’s savored abroad include Keri-Keri (a main dish in Aruba), Stoba (a fantastic stew), Conch Stew, Paella, Kabsa (a mixed rice dish originally from Saudi Arabia), Chicken Tikka Masala (a dish of chunks of roasted marinated chicken in a spiced curry that’s popular in the United Kingdom), and Flying Fish with Cou Cou (the national dish of Barbados).

Jeanette also enjoys exercising and doing some serious shopping.

Jeanette was asked why she joined Classy Living Society?
She said she joined CLS because she wanted to be part of an organization whose focus is to support and generously give back to the community in various ways. Jeanette also wanted to meet and connect with other women from diverse backgrounds. She wanted to engage with women with varying goals and expansive aspirations, along with being involved with a group that knew how to have fun always with a purpose in mind. Jeanette says that CLS checked all of the boxes for her, and she hasn’t been disappointed. She is delighted to be a member and looks forward to many more years of membership and service.

Become an Oh So Classy member today.
https://cls-volunteer.org/become-a-member/

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POLKA DOTS & TENNIS SHOES FOR A CAUSE – GET ON THE BUS TO SAVANNAH, GEORGIA!

On August 1, Classy Living Society members and their guests boarded a luxury chartered motorcoach and traveled to Savannah, Georgia for the day!  What better way to bring in the month of August than a summer day trip to a beautiful place!

The attire of the day was polka dots, polka dots, and more polka dots!  The ladies were asked to rock their polka dots in whichever way they chose – sunglasses, tops, dresses, skirts, pants, hats and so on!  Each lady kept it casual in their favorite pair of sneakers/tennis shoes as well.

The ladies arrived bright and early to board the bus.  When they arrived at their seats, they each found a surprise gift awaiting them, a bag of goodies which included a CLS branded polka dot mask – to ensure the ladies were equipped to follow mask mandates and prevent the spread of COVID-19.  The masks were custom made by 14-year-old Mia, owner and operator of Mia’s Masks in Moreno Valley, California.  Mia volunteers her time to create and donate masks for senior citizens.  Be sure to click the link below to read the May 14, 2020 Classy Chronicles article about Mia and other young people making a difference in their communities during the pandemic: Young Community Heroes of COVID-19

The bus rolled away from their meeting spot promptly at 6:30 a.m.  CLS was on the move!  As they headed to their destination, Founder LaShanda Pitts opened the day with an introduction to the most important part of the trip – the giveback mission.  Each day tripper brought swimsuits to be donated to underserved children ages 2-10 who are attending the Salvation Army’s summer day camp programs.  

Statistics show that children adorned with new swimsuits are more likely to feel included among peers, are more eager to acquire swimming skills, and attend pools and beaches with their friends and families with pride and confidence.  CLS came to the rescue by collecting and donating over 100 swimsuits for boys and girls!  Hooray!

The Salvation Army Summer Day Camp provides youth with a safe, structured, and enjoyable environment during the summer months. While running, jumping, and playing, kids will meet new friends, have fun, and learn about God through Bible studies and Vacation Bible School programs. Click on the link at the end of this article for more information about this worthwhile program for the children.

Let the games begin!  The ladies broke off into teams, and using their own personal items, each team was charged with the task of dressing a doll for the annual CLS Red Dress Gala. Comedian Lady Q hosted the game and, as usual, she had the ladies rolling in the aisle with laughter.  Speaking of the aisle…the ladies had the bus rocking and rolling on the road as they danced and sang up and down the aisle.  The best way to let your hair down!

The fan down game – led by member Agnes Jamison – was also loads of fun and congratulations goes out to the winner, member Sylvia Webb!  Finally, a pit stop game!  As the bus stopped at a gas station for a break, a lively scavenger hunt ensued.  Each gamer was given a list of things to find during the stop and the one with the most finds was crowned the winner – congratulations to Cherret Callam.  The scavenger hunt game is always a popular get on the bus game for CLS as it involves interacting with people at the stop.  This time was no different – the people at the stop were quite intrigued by the crazy bunch of ladies who were all wearing polka dots!  “Who are you?” Hilarious!

Soon, the bus arrived in Savannah and the first stop was Sorry Charlie’s Oyster Bar & Cocktails, famous for their Frosé cocktail – a delicious frozen rosé drink that is always popular for CLS members on trips to Savannah.  Oh, and yes, there was food!  Sorry Charlie’s laid out a socially distanced, delectable brunch of fried green tomatoes, crab cakes, mac n’ cheese, collard greens, roasted chicken, blue crab pasta and shrimp and grits.  Yum!  During the brunch, the ladies continued to laugh, take photos, dance and have a great time!  

Stuffed and happy after indulging in brunch foods and Frosé drinks, the ladies were off to paint the town with polka dots!  The remainder of the afternoon was dedicated to exploring Savannah; taking in Savannah’s delicious custom fare (pralines from River Street Sweets anyone?), plus shopping, sightseeing, people watching, visits to rooftop bars and soaking up the sun.  It was a hot, hot day! 

Back on the bus for the ride back to Atlanta, the uproarious fun continued!  More dancing, more singing, more laughter!  Who says you can’t have a good time while wearing masks and socially distancing!  Everyone gets in on the fun – even the bus driver had a great time; he declared that he is going to be CLS’s “forever” bus driver!  CLS’s women in business members who were present were also provided an opportunity to speak to the ladies about their offerings.

Arriving safely back to the Atlanta area, the bus trip to Savannah owed the ladies nothing!  CLS bus trips are always moving caravans of festivities, sisterhood and giving back and this time was no different…it was another successful occasion of celebrating the cause!

Important Links:

Mia’s Masks

Salvation Army Summer Day Camp

Sorry Charlie’s Oyster Bar & Cocktails

Photography:  EnPhocus Photography

 

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On the evening of August 11, Classy Living Society hosted a CLS Talks with special guest International Beauty Expert and Brow Esthetician Kim Roxie. Ms. Roxie, who is also the Founder and CEO of LAMIK Beauty, took over Facebook Live and delivered a vivacious presentation titled, “Your Eyes are Front and Center; Learn to Smize Them!”

Smize: to assume a playful or alluring expression of the eyes.

These days during the pandemic, our eyes are more front and center than ever before.  With Zoom video conferences peppered throughout our remote work days and wearing masks in public, our eyes are the focal point.  So why not make sure they’re visually appealing!   Ms. Roxie demonstrated how to do just that – with LAMIK Beauty’s Celebrity Brow kit.  In the session, CLS members learned a few great tips about how to DIY their brows and eye makeup.  They also learned how the brow kit can be used four different ways: concealer, eyeshadow primer, eyeliner, and eyeshadow!  

The session was truly amazing, as Ms. Roxie is as lively, spirited and engaging as they come!  It is nearly impossible to interact with her and not get caught up in her dynamic energy!  The ladies learned, laughed and came away armed with new techniques to get those eyebrows popping!  There were a few giveaways as well!  

Kim Roxie has been at the forefront of celebrating the beauty of multicultural women since she founded LAMIK in 2004, while still a college student in Atlanta. She didn’t set out to become an entrepreneur at 21, but was inspired to create her own line when she researched the ingredients in the brands available to her customers while working at a cosmetics counter part-time while in school. Dismayed by the unhealthy ingredients she uncovered, Kim decided to become the change she was looking for and founded LAMIK, an environmentally conscious cosmetics line that would not only look good on women of color but also be good for them. By naming her brand LAMIK, which means Love and Makeup in Kindness, Kim signaled that her brand was about more than makeup. She believes in promoting a deeper meaning of beauty, that it emanates from the inside out.

Want more info about Kim Roxie, LAMIK and her Celebrity Brow Kit?  Click here:  LAMIK Beauty.  

Follow her on social media:

Facebook:  LAMIK Cosmetics / Facebook

Twitter: LAMIK Beauty / Twitter

Instagram: LAMIK Beauty / Instagram

CLS Talks is an exciting virtual platform by which CLS will bring informative insights to support, among other things, women’s physical, relational and financial health.  The goal of CLS Talks is to educate the participants of these unique video sessions on important topics related to women’s health.

 

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When it comes to reaching out…

Classy Living Society’s new REACH membership level is designed to connect and unite  members who live outside of the state of Georgia. Our focus has been, and will continue to be, providing a unique sisterhood bonding experience for our members by offering exclusive, one-of-a-kind perks and opportunities that will empower women to produce positive change.  As a successful volunteer organization, CLS is committed to impacting communities around the world and transforming lives through dedicated service to those in need. CLS’s REACH level membership is currently being offered in lieu of our “stand-alone” societies, in order to promote a more comprehensive and first-rate experience for our out-of-state members. 

If you’d like to join CLS on the volunteer journey and you live outside of Georgia, choosing the REACH membership level is easy!  Simply select REACH and read the amazing details about your level. If you want to make a difference…make a lasting impact…give back to those who need a hand up and be part of a unique sisterhood…the REACH membership tier provides the perfect opportunity for you to do so … from wherever you live!

$14 (monthly) – REACH (outside of Georgia)

*$50 admin fee – one time processing fee to cover the cost of the online on-boarding process, branded CLS t-shirt for volunteering.  A portion of the admin fee will go towards supporting young women on their collegiate journey. We are aware and understand that formal education is only one stepping stone towards establishing professional success and meeting career goals, and is certainly not the only manner in which one may be successful in business. However, we also understand that sisterhood cultivated in a collegiate environment is equally pivotal to shaping future leaders. Helping young, aspiring women of color reach beyond themselves and grow into successful, and philanthropic women is a cause we are passionate about. With your support, an education-focused nonprofit will receive a donation in your name. Your giving begins today!

Learn more at: https://cls-volunteer.org/become-a-member/

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Oh So Classy Member Spotlight

Classy Living Society is proud to highlight our Oh So Classy member Lady Q!  Lady Q is a member of one of our highest membership tiers and shares an elite status with other members on this Oh So Classy level.  

Her  motto “Laughter is Healing, My Purpose, My Passion” truly comes through as she dazzles audiences around the country with her special form of comedy.  She was awarded the PrazyeFactor People’s Choice Awards in 2014 and 2018, for Best Christian Comedian. She was also an Honoree for the Community Service Award, given by the Gospel Choice Awards in July, 2019.  Lady Q has also served as Classy Living Society’s Mistress of Ceremony at numerous Red Dress Galas, CLS’s annual fundraiser.  As a native of Charleston, SC, and now living in Atlanta, Georgia, Lady Q has been making people laugh for many years.  As a stand-up comedian, she brings her own brand of humor to events, from weddings to birthday parties and everything in between.  Lady Q doesn’t hesitate to share her own take on everyday life events and makes it her mission to bring joy to her audience. She definitely sees the humor in life and her glass is always full of what makes us smile.  

She’s the mother of two amazing young adults who’ve supported her journey without fail. They understand her mission and have never left her side. Starting out as a youth pastor and former preschool teacher, Lady Q was led to her destiny after speaking at her church. She was so well received that she knew she had found her true calling.  After her “One Woman Show” in 2008, she was well on her way to becoming the well known and sought after comedian she is today.  She is currently busy with bookings and clings to her heart of service to others. Lady Q has been noted to say, “There is so much joy in making people laugh and being relatable.  I always tell people that comedians have the privilege of saying what other people think.”  Lady Q is living life to the fullest, as she enjoys traveling the world and bringing individuals together through laughter. We look forward to hearing more from this fabulously spirited Oh So Classy lady and know that she’ll continue to combine her love of God with her love of laughter!!

You can find Lady Q on these platforms:

comedianladyqlaughter.com

Twitter: Lady Q Laughter (@LaughterQ)

Email: ladyqlaughter@gmail.com

Phone: (1) 678 516 6889

Facebook: Comedian Lady Q

 

 

 

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Welcome to the NEW Classy Chronicles!

Formerly, the Classy Chronicles was the official online digital magazine of Classy Living Society. The newly revamped Classy Chronicles is now a platform housed on the Classy Living Society website! Through easy-to-navigate dropdown menus, the Classy Chronicles provides an outlet to many subjects of interest at the click of a mouse – articles and features that highlight people who are doing amazing things in the community, health and wellness, work-life balance, beauty and fashion and more!

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