With Valentine's Day on your mind—candles at dinner, red silk undies, chocolate-covered anything—now's a good time to think about your heart.
Thump, thump, thump. Don't be distracted by the obvious rhyme. Focus! When your heart gets sick, so do you. When it stops, you drop. There are many reasons to take care of your heart—oh, the thousands of dollars you'll save!—but preventing an early death is the biggie.
This Valentine's Day, open up to another truth about your heart that never gets enough attention, especially from our busy doctors: It needs loving. Giving and receiving.
Hilton Head Island and the Lowcountry
Trying to pinpoint the essence and feeling of what it was
like to be raised on a small island eludes me.
The nature of it dangles before me,
but I can’t quite catch it or wrap my words around it.
Is it a Lowcountry sunset over the Intracoastal Waterway?
Or is it the connection to nature and wildlife that makes
it such a unique place to live?
Maybe it’s the strong community of people?
I have tried for years to explain to friends all over the world what it was like to grow up in paradise—the Lowcountry of South Carolina—Hilton Head Island. Never could I find the right words to illuminate or describe the fullness of my childhood place. But this is the beauty of it, too. This well-kept, secret place gave me and my childhood friends refuge from the bigger, busier, more complicated world, which allowed us a moment in time to just be kids—where we felt invincible and untouchable on our 13-mile island.
I can recall vividly—and count on one hand—the migraine headaches I’ve had in my life, all of which were before age 10. Once I turned double digits, I outgrew them ... until a couple of months ago.
With no warning at all, there I was back to my 8-year-old self, flat on my back with a raging migraine. Why now, after all these years?
In reading up on the latest findings, I discovered how important magnesium is to our overall health. Turns out that 80% of the U.S. population suffers from magnesium deficiency causing all kinds of health issues, one of them being migraine headaches. And here’s the problem with that: Magnesium supplements are not necessarily the answer because it is not easily absorbed through the digestive tract.
With Local Author’s 4 Interview Pillars
There are moments in our lives where it is imperative to shine. The job interview is one of them. You have 7 seconds to make a good first impression, a mere flash to convey your best self. Are you prepared? Do you know your value? Have you researched the company or school you are applying to? Do you know the job description or school program inside and out?
Many go into interviews unprepared and shoot from the hip. Some can’t get control of their nerves and fail to communicate their best self because of it. There are many things that can go wrong in an interview, and you may never know what, you simply know you didn’t get the job. There is a method to the interviewing madness, and if you follow Author Donne Greco Paine’s 4 Interview Pillars you are more likely to get a job offer.
She is Louisiana French and Lowcountry Fine
The north end of Hilton Head Island has cause to celebrate. A new, local, fine dining establishment has planted itself firmly in the neighborhood and whisked open its welcoming doors. Owner and seasoned restauranteur Earl Nightingale purchased the old, boarded-up Outback Steakhouse building and renovated it into something extra special, with no remnants of blooming onions anywhere to be found. Meet Celeste; she is the beautiful, friendly and delicious new restaurant everyone is flocking to. North end residents are ecstatic to have such a quality restaurant that doesn’t require a trek down the Cross Island Expressway. But there is much more to be ecstatic about Celeste than that.
Let’s talk about what makes a restaurant a favorite—one that is tightly snuggled into your familiar restaurant rut—because these are the reasons you will adore Celeste and welcome her to your short list.
You don't need me to tell you that we're living in uncertain economic times.
One day, stocks are plummeting and home foreclosures are skyrocketing; the next day, things seem to be looking up.
But whether the economy is good or bad, expenses keep rising.
There's the mortgage and the car payments to deal with and all of your other necessary expenses.
But what about the big-ticket items? Something like a busted water heater often hits without warning and with the potential to blow a giant hole in your finances.
The secret for handling a big money decision isn't to grab the credit cards. Instead, you need to anticipate these expenses, divide them into manageable pieces and make them as routine as paying the phone bill.
“Adam” is a guy I’ve created to illustrate one big and fascinating idea from a book by British psychotherapist William Pullen: Movement Is Medicine.
Yes! Forget the word “exercise” for now. Just moving our bodies—walking, dancing, jogging, preferably in nature—can help free us from stress, emotional pain and whatever else we’re dealing with that makes our bodies feel stuck, unsettled and depressed.
This therapeutic connection between the mind and body isn’t a theory; it’s a fact of life. Your body is self-healing and wondrous, and when you move it, you automatically get the health benefits that come from the blood and lymph flowing, the molecules of emotion circulating, the tissues nourished, the joints juiced.
And when you add mindfulness to movement, therapist Pullen explains, you’re on a self-directed path to enhanced well-being, physical and mental.
The Art of Dining
Owner Robert Saxton of Chophouse 119 emphatically stated, “You’re not going to get a better cut of filet in America.” And after savoring every bite of the 12-ounce, center-cut, cooked to medium rare perfection filet, I agree. I am not a connoisseur of beef, but Robert and Executive Chef Daniel Williamson are, and they have brought their expertise and passion for high quality and excellence to Hilton Head Island.
“We are all about the steaks. We source them from New York City and Pat LaFrieda, America’s most celebrated butcher. The beef is cultivated from small specialty farms, which offers our dining patrons a higher experience overall,” Robert explained.
Spreading Cheer and Glad Tidings in Remembrance of Emmy Wilson
Christina Wilson is a successful young executive with diplomas on the wall, and her “to do” files neatly spread upon her desk. She is very pretty, polished and articulate, but the day I interviewed her, she was just a mom, a mom who had the unthinkable happen. Her 16-year-old daughter, Emmy, was killed in an automobile wreck on December 17, 2019, and in the last three years, Christina and her husband, Jason, have been through the depths of grief, searching for ways to celebrate their special girl.
According to Christina, Emmy would just love having this Pink article about her. She enjoyed being the one having “her name in lights” and was described as “larger than life,” and she “took all the oxygen out of a room when she entered it.”
‘Tis the Season to Curl Up With a Great Book!
The Christmas Spirits on Tradd Street
by Karen White
“Karen White is a favorite of mine and she hit the magical mark with this one!”
Whether you’ve been involved in Author Karen White’s Tradd Street series or not, this Christmas page-turner has it all—ghosts, history, intrigue, wit, romance and adventure. This is a fun read that will add joy, mystery and a few spine-tingling moments to your holidays, sending you to bed early to get in a few minutes—wink, wink—of reading prior to nodding off!
Synopsis: Two years after The Guests on South Battery became a New York Times hardcover bestseller, the quirky, doughnut-loving, schedule-obsessed heroine Melanie Trenholm returns. Finally married to true-crime bestselling author Jack Trenholm, they are living in Melanie’s historic Charleston home with their 18-month old twins and Jack’s 15-year-old daughter. But domestic bliss can’t last for long. A new passel of spirits have also taken up residence at 55 Tradd Street, and they need Melanie’s help to right old wrongs and solve a mystery.
If you're still struggling with your holiday gift list, help is on the way. I've got a lot of swell ideas for you this year, none of them digital or a novelty watch with a dancing Rudolph.
This year, follow the wisdom of the Shopping Bodhisattva and give yourself the gift of not overspending. Debt equals stress. If the gifts I'm suggesting are beyond your budget, give hugs. Or bake banana bread. Or do what I did when I was a kid: Make up your own coupon good for a foot rub, car wash, or three nights of kitchen cleanup.
(Action Alert: The personal service coupon—a gift I still love to give and receive—could involve finding scissors and cardboard. If you just want to take a piece of plain paper and scribble "This coupon is good for one jar of my homemade lentil-and-spinach soup," be my guest.)
Merry Christmas from Pink
Away With Divisiveness, Anger & Fear
Let It All Go & Replace It With Cheer
by Elizabeth Skenes Millen
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house,
Everyone was angry, even the mouse.
The tempers had flared, it seemed nobody cared
The TV shows told us there’s no hope, no prayer.
The children were alone all glued to their phones,
Which stole Christmas spirit, the cheer and the tone.
Plants make me happy. An unexpected bloom, a plant that recently perked up, or a clipping that’s finally taken root is all it takes to bring a smile to my face. Throughout the summer my garden thrives with summer-loving hibiscus plants and a plethora of succulents—my green thumb shines. But, as the temperatures begin to plummet, so does my garden inspiration. This year I decided to head to The Greenery, for a fall and winter planter crash course with the one-and-only Carol Guedalia, one of the two resident horticulturists at The Greenery’s Garden Center.
As I explained my conundrum, my first lesson was apparent. While all those Pinterest-worthy fall containers grace many porches as soon as October rolls around, here in the Lowcountry it’s just too hot. Deemed “Indian Summer,” fall plants will simply “melt” in our early fall heat. So, it’s important to to think more “fall/winter” when it comes to choosing your plants while sipping your Pumpkin Spice Latte in 85-degree heat.
Human beings are social creatures,
which is why screens are not enough to meet our social needs.
All it took was a prolonged pandemic for our kids to replace interpersonal
social skills with social media and screen skills.
If you’ve noticed a decline in the younger generation’s appetite
to socialize in person, you’re not alone.
On the outside, kids are clowning around on Snapchat or TikTok, laughing at memes, and entertaining friends with filters and altered photos. In reality, and in too many cases, their mental health has taken a dive while they were trying to cope with being put on hold. They’re worried about how they’ll catch up. According to research, 82 percent of Generation Z members believe they’ve been traumatized. While it sounds extreme, many of them feel postponed, pushed aside, or penalized. Analysis from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tells us that 37 percent of high school students said they were experiencing poor mental health due to anxiety. That’s one in every three students.
Are You One of the 1005 Members?
What is WAHHI?
It is the Womens Association of Hilton Head Island, and it is 1005 members strong. Now in its 61st year, WAHHI started in 1961 as a small garden club with the goal of keeping the plants in Coligny Circle looking neat and beautiful. The organization’s mission no longer involves Coligny Circle, but its most recent kickoff to the 2022/23 year was a major event held at Celebration Park, which is just a stone’s throw from it.
This large, powerful group of women still strive to do good things for the women of the Lowcountry. The goals of the organization are to promote the natural and cultural beauty of the Island, encourage projects which benefit the community, and facilitate communication among the women of the Lowcountry.
More Than the Food
Thanksgiving is a holiday most people connect to food—turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing (or stuffing), cranberry sauce, yams, green bean casserole, pumpkin or apple pie—ideally shared with a lot of family members around a big table, followed by dessert in a cozy den while watching football games on a big-screen TV.
I think about Thanksgiving along those lines, too, but my favorite memory has little to do with the food. As a kid growing up in the suburbs of Long Island, New York, I ran downstairs on Thanksgiving morning to turn the TV on at precisely 9 o’clock for the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. I didn’t want to miss any float, marching band, or giant balloon—cartoon characters like Popeye, Underdog, the Cat in the Hat, as well as a giant turkey—floating high above the streets. I wanted to see what the Rockettes were wearing, and which celebrities on the floats stopped to sing and wave to the crowd in front of Macy’s Herald Square. It could be raining, snowing, windy and cold, or as pleasant as a spring day, and families still lined up on the sidewalks in droves, while some were lucky enough to be standing in the windows of buildings along the parade route on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.
Sickness happens. It’s part of life, the not-fun part. Even though you’re a ferocious warrior for your own well-being, doing all you can do to exercise with joy, keep your immune system strong, get enough sleep, eat real food and help love, or at least like, your neighbor, still, health setbacks are unavoidable.
That’s why I want to share this recent email from Theresa G.:
Dear Marilynn: I try hard as I can to stay healthy, eat right and exercise. I was on a good roll recently. I would go to the gym in the morning, do a 30-minute workout and then head out to a trail close to my home and ride my bike for an hour. Then I hit a brick wall. What I thought was a cold turned out to be pneumonia. I have been down for almost a month. The medicine helped to reduce the symptoms, but the side effects took a (different) toll on my body. I had insomnia, jitters, weight gain because of the prednisone and a horrible taste in my mouth because of the antibiotic. What is your advice about getting back to a healthy routine while still recovering from such a blow? Thanks. —Theresa G.
Websites and apps to make helping friends and family a breeze!
One of the strongest things a woman can do is to ask for help when she needs it. No one should have to go through struggles or fight battles alone. For those who want to help, it can be difficult to know how. Luckily, there’s a website for that. Whether what’s needed is financial, emotional or nutritional, helpers and those in need can get connected via some terrific bits of tech.
If you want or need to raise money for personal reasons or your favorite charity, the go-to website is GoFundMe®. The best news is that it’s practically free! There’s no fee to start a fundraiser. Since donations are made through credit or debit cards, GoFundMe® automatically deducts 2.9% and 30 cents from each donation to cover processing charges.
Local Musicians Come Together to “Close the Door” on Parkinson’s Disease
“When I received my own diagnosis, I evaluated a half-dozen organizations for where to put my work and support,” said local art photographer Jeff Keefer. “I chose the Michael J. Fox Foundation, because they combine the efforts of everybody to find the cure and close the door based on science.”
Jeff has been a supporter of the organization’s work since he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2005. He has chaired the national Michael J. Fox Foundation and is its current vice chair. In addition, he donates the proceeds from his VIVID Gallery in Sea Pines to the Foundation.
But he wanted to do more—both to raise funds and create awareness.
Everything about walking is good for your well-being—unless you're doing it with a bag of Oreos. It builds strength, reduces your risk of heart disease, juices up your joints, calms your mind and helps you and your cocker spaniel live longer, happier lives.
Some scoff at walking, dismissing it as exercise-lite, not cool, maybe even a waste of your recreational time. These people should be taken with a grain of pink Himalayan salt.
Walking works wonders. Even a little bit of walking goes a long way toward shifting you from a sedentary lifestyle to a more active one, with more energy and looser jeans. It's that shift from sedentary to active that leapfrogs you down the path to a healthier lifestyle. Not long ago, two scientists sifted through 4,295 published articles on walking written between 1970 and 2007. Their conclusion: Yes, even a modest walking program offers significant protection against many medical problems associated with old age. Death, for instance.
Are You Attending the Gala? Celebrating 50 Years of Art Magic!
Have you ever wondered what the Art League of Hilton Head is all about? Well look no further because I’m excited to fill you in on the past five decades—that’s right, 50 years!—of this amazing little gem that sits on our island. In fact, it actually sits in two places on our island.
The Arts Center at Shelter Cove houses the Art League’s incredible gallery space, where member’s art is exhibited six times a year with a featured artist, as well as the popular Gullah Art wall. There is also a “small art” wall and a selection of one-of-a-kind custom jewelry. The next time you attend an Arts Center show, be sure to stop in the gallery; you’ll be amazed at the talent on our island.
One of the Lowcountry’s Most Accomplished Women in Higher Education to Share Insights About “The Power of Forgiveness” at Upcoming TEDxHiltonHead
As both the Vice Chancellor for Advancement at the University of South Carolina Beaufort (USCB) and Executive Director of the USCB Education Foundation, Dr. Anna Ponder knows what it takes to help a university and its students succeed. She also knows a great deal about the power of forgiveness—a topic close to her heart, which she will share when TEDx Hilton Head makes its much-anticipated return to the stage this fall.
Dr. Ponder is one of 12 dynamic speakers who will present their “Ideas Worth Spreading” at TEDxHiltonHead, which will take place on November 4 at the Seahawk Cultural Center on Hilton Head Island from 6:30 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. This year’s TEDxHiltonHead, “Making Waves”, will feature speakers who not only represent the movers and shakers in their communities, but also those who are committed to “making waves” by creating real change to make a positive impact in the world—a perfect description of Dr. Ponder’s work throughout her career.
Sun City Resident Chris Altieri Enjoys Quick Recovery After Hip Replacement
For Chris Altieri, the sudden onset of hip pain threatened to disrupt the comfortable retirement that she and her husband Mike had long looked forward to.
When the cold winters in her native Massachusetts began to wreak havoc on her arthritis, the couple looked for warmer climes to spend their retirement. That brought them to Sun City three years ago, and they’ve been enjoying warm, snow-free South Carolina ever since.
“We’ve done our tour of duty with kids, work and all that,” Chris said. “Now it’s just time to relax and have fun.”
Americans are known around the world for eating too much, but when it comes to time, we are starving ourselves. It's called "time famine"—an unpleasant, uncomfortable feeling that we have too much to do in too little time. Social scientists have been studying it for more than 20 years.
"I'm behind before I get up!" my mother-in-law used to say. Sound familiar? It's that existentially endless to-do list that keeps us feeling rushed, hassled, busy-busy-busy, the opposite of All Is Well.
Sadly, I don't have the time necessary to explain all the reasons why "time famine" is over-whelming so many of us and why "time affluence," the blissful sense of having plenty of time, is so elusive. But you can bet your favorite digital device that it has everything to do with the crush of modern technology and what sociologist Simon Gottschalk calls "the oppression of speed."
Middle and High Schoolers Plan and Attend the Upcoming 30th Annual Beaufort County Youth Conference
Excitement is in the air as plans are in place for the impactful 30th Annual Beaufort County Youth Conference! This year’s theme is “Through Our Eyes…R.O.A.R. (Redefining Our Actions & Responsibilities). This conference, which is designed by teens for teens, strives to enhance the abilities of middle and high school youth to make healthy choices and positive decisions when confronted with difficult and life-altering situations.
Regina Bolden, now Petty Officer 3rd Class, participated in this conference for three years and acknowledges it made a huge difference in her mindset as she approached adulthood. “My attendance and participation with the various workshops, such as drug awareness and dealing with peer pressure, helped build my self-esteem and enabled me to focus on my future endeavors. Many thanks to the Beaufort County Youth Conference for preparing me for college and my military career.”
Readers’ Precious Pet Pics
Check it Out!
Do you want to join a knitting club? Learn to play chess? Find an anime club for your teen? Join a book club? Write a better journal? Make a craft? Enjoy an art exhibit? Use a computer? Learn to deal with legal matters? Listen to music? Play chess? All of this and so much more is possible at your public library!
I’ll bet you thought libraries were just for books. Well, think again! Books are the main event, but the learning doesn’t stop there. Public libraries offer a variety of programs, from classes to clubs to storytelling to book talks for both children and adults. Some even show movies! Even if you just need a place to get out of the heat for a while, your public library is there for you, no purchase necessary!
The run-up to Labor Day is always a bit of a letdown. I feel like summer is kaput, vacation is over and Instagrammed, and it's time to sharpen my pencils, buy new notebooks and head back to school.
Who uses pencils? Or notebooks? And what school? I haven't returned to the classroom since computers were the size of a Starbucks, but that's how many of us are hardwired to feel when Labor Day comes and goes.
So lesson up. Back to school isn't just for kids, and that's a good thing. If you're keen on boosting your well-being—and who isn't?—then please welcome this seasonal shift into back-to-school mode. Use it to study and learn new stuff that informs and improves your own vision of living a healthier, happier life.