We Have Much To Be Thankful For

November is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month. It’s good timing, during the beginning of the holiday season, because it helps us all be aware of our aging loved ones and how much we should cherish every minute with them. Alzheimer’s is such an insidious disease because it robs people of their memories, control over their body and sometimes even changes their personalities. I talked to the Alzheimer’s Association of Middle Tennessee’s Tiffany Mann, a terrific young woman on a mission to help educate and support people who’s lives have been touched by Alzheimer’s. She helps to disspell some myths and give us all some much-needed facts about living with the disease. If you or someone you love is facing the challenges of caring for someone with Alzheimer’s, you’re going to want to take advantage of all the Alzheimer’s Association has to offer. Listen to what Tiffany has to say, and if you need more help, check out their website. Tiffany Mann

There are so many amazing organizations doing good work and this year Middle Tennesseans have been challenged. Western Union is holding "contest" of sorts to encourage giving. Simply long onto their website to learn about some terrific charities and then vote for your favorite. It's that easy! I talked to Frank Sanchez with the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, to learn about their programs and ways they've been helping kids in Nashville. Listen to Frank, then check out the Western Union website! Frank Sanchez

And, on a personal note, my family will be gathering together in Connecticut to enjoy the holiday weekend. It will be great to have all my kids under one roof for awhile and to catch up with my brother’s family. It’s a little nerve wracking to anticipate the TSA’s new security measures, but we’ll try to stay zen about it and just relax! If you are traveling for the holiday stay safe, and if you’re staying put at home, enjoy the warmth of your own nest. I am thankful for my health and that of my loved ones, for having a job, a nice place to live and many loving and supportive people in my life. I am also grateful to my extended Nashville community for making our family feel at home here. It’s definitely growing on me! Happy Turkey Day everyone!

How To Win Friends and Influence…Anyone!

Happy Monday everyone! This past week we had some minor tech difficulties, so I’m just now able to post a segment from the November 7th show. It’s definitely worth hearing, though, because it’s with one of the most talented and entertaining artists I’ve talked to in a long time. Robert Post, creator of Post Comedy Theater, kicked off the latest TPAC Family Field Trip series. This impossible-to-define performer combines vaudeville, mime, music, classical theater and just about everything else to create some unique family-oriented fun. Take a listen, then check out tpac.org to find more great family field trips. Robert Post/Post Family Theater

This week, I talked to a guy who knows how to persuade just about anyone! And for those of us with teenagers, this is a handy talent to have in your back pocket. Chris St. Hilaire’s techniques work in any situation from your home life, personal relations to your interactions with that cranky boss and deadbeat co-workers. You can learn these communication skills from reading his new book “27 Powers of Persuasion: Simple Strategies to Seduce Audiences and Win Allies.”
Chris St. Hilaire
To learn more about Chris and his special powers, check out www.juryimpact.net

And finally, have you hugged your child’s teacher lately? Have you thanked the bus driver for getting your student to and from school safely? How about those hearty folks in the school’s front office? This is American Education Week, so it’s a good time to let the dedicated people on the front lines of education know your appreciate them. I talked to Gera Summerford, President of the Tennessee Education, about what’s going on in our local schools. The TEA represents teachers throughout the state and you can learn more about it from www.teateachers.org. Here’s Gera’s interview. Gera Summerford

Coming up soon, some great holiday gift ideas, holiday happenings around Middle Tennessee and some updates on Alzheimer’s and Cancer you won’t want to miss. Feel free to contact me with story ideas, comments and feedback on our show.

Have a great week and keep warm!

He Just Keeps on Going and Going and Going and Going and…

A couple of months ago, I interviewed a terrific young local man, Barrett Hedges, who is a nature photographer. Barrett had a photo entered in an Energizer contest and was chosen as a finalist for his picture of a bear. Well…..drumroll please…..his photo was chosen as the Grand Prize winner! Here are the deets about this amazing guy and his amazing picture. Read about him in this press release excerpt, then go see the winning photo for yourself!

TENNESSEE man NAMED GRAND PRIZE WINNER
IN ENERGIZER ULTIMATE PHOTO CONTEST

Young Photographer to receive “Ultimate” Prize from National Geographic and Energizer

ST. LOUIS (Nov. 4, 2010) – At age 24, Barrett Hedges from Tullahoma, Tenn., can now count himself among the ranks of internationally-acclaimed photographers. In December, Hedges will see his photo appear in the pages of National Geographic magazine in an ad for Energizer® Ultimate Lithium batteries. Hedges’ photo beat out more than 14,000 other entries to take the top spot in the 2010 Energizer Ultimate Photo Contest with National Geographic. In addition to seeing his photo published, Hedges’ “ultimate” prize also includes a 9-day National Geographic Expeditions sailing trip for two to the Greek Isles.

“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” said Hedges. “Being selected as the winner of the Energizer Ultimate Photo Contest is a huge step forward in pursuing my passion for photography.”

In April, Energizer and National Geographic launched the third annual Energizer Ultimate Photo Contest, which brings together the world’s premier resource for photojournalism with the company that makes the world’s longest-lasting AA and AAA batteries for digital cameras and other high-tech devices. Aspiring photographers were asked to submit an entry in one of six thematic categories: animals/wildlife, nature, travel, people/cultures, weather and – a brand new category for 2010 – action/energy.

National Geographic photographer Jim Richardson returned for the third year to serve as the contest judge. Richardson reviewed the 14,000 entries, and in August he named two Category Finalists in each of the six categories. Then, he went back and re-examined the 12 finalist photos and selected Hedges photo of a charging brown bear, submitted in the action/energy category, as the Grand Prize Winner.

“What a tough decision! Every one of the 12 finalists is worthy of honor, and every one could have been the winner,” said Richardson. “But after hours of pondering and weighing the decision, I kept coming back to that great Brown bear, charging straight at us with all the energy of a freight train. Face to face with a force of nature, the image carries us into another world, at once frightening and magnificent.”

Hedges has a history with wildlife photography. After graduating from college in 2008, he went to work with national parks in Alaska, where he enjoyed getting the chance to photograph bears in their natural environment.

“When photographing wildlife, you never know what each day will bring,” said Hedges. “That unknown drives me to go out and take pictures day after day.”

For additional information on the Energizer Ultimate Photo Contest and to see Hedges’ photo along with the finalist photos, www.nationalgeographic.com/lithium .

Congrats Barrett!

A High-Tech Horror Story

This past week, in honor of Halloween, I did an interview about a very modern-day horror story: internet identity theft. I talked to Adam Levin, founder of Identity Theft 9-1-1 about how these new-age cyber-criminals can nab your identity and how you can protect yourself and your kids. It was such an important and informative interview, we devoted the entire show to it. Here are part 1 and part 2. Adam Levin Part 1 Adam Levin Part 2

And, while you were all getting prepped for Halloween, my hubby and I were snuggled up for the weekend at an amazing local inn. The Inn at Evins Mill is that perfect combination of romance, fine dining and rustic Southern comfort. And the best part: it’s only an hour and a half from Nashville! My loving husband didn’t even turn on his cell phone to catch his precious SF Giants! It was a little slice of heaven right in our own backyard. Here’s a link to this magical place: Evins Mill .

P.S. We even won their annual Pumpkin Carving Contest! Check out the photo of the winning entry, our first ever minus the kids.

I also wanted to add a promo for a what looks to be a terrific event. The “Conscious Nashville Healing & Arts Community Fair”. It’s on Saturday, November 6th at the Sanctuary at the First Church Unity. There will be healing practitioner sessions, artists, musicians and all types of vendors. For more information, check it out at Conscious Nashville . Do something good for yourself!

Coming up this week, don’t miss some tasty tips for making your Thanksgiving turkey out-of-this-world delicious! and get ready for some fabulous, fun family-oriented entertainment coming up at TPAC. Have a great week and keep listening Nashville.