May/Jun
2018

My Personal Passions

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Written by Jorrie Johnson

I am passionate about taking care of myself by making time to exercise, eating healthy and getting enough sleep. I am also passionate about my financial security, so I work a full-time day job and manage RochesterWomen magazine. I am passionate about being a good mom, spending time with my 12-year-old son on a daily basis and my college-aged children as often as I can. I am also passionate about maintaining relationships with my extended family and friends. When I choose in favor of my passions, I choose with intention for less tension. However, there are days that my passions come in conflict with each other and in those instances, what rises to the top is, of course, my role as a mom. My son had the flu four times this winter, causing me stress. Fortunately, he is old enough to stay home alone while I worked, but what fell to the bottom of the list was taking care of myself. It’s the reality of motherhood, especially single motherhood.

If you can relate to my passions and struggles, you will enjoy many of the articles we have gathered for you for this May/June Mother’s Day issue. We featured my friend Allison Loftus in the May/June 2017 issue, and this year she shares her creative writing and counseling skills with RochesterWomen magazine readers (page 11). Following is our I Am a Beautiful Rochester Woman story about Acasia Wegner, a young heart attack survivor and mother (page 13). Continue on through this issue for Mother’s Day gift ideas and brunch recipes (pages 24-25).

On the cover of this issue is JoMarie Morris who, coincidentally, we featured in the first Spring issue of RochesterWomen magazine 18 years ago. “Climbing Up the Legal Ladder, law partner JoMarie Morris,” written by Amy Swain covered Morris’ single motherhood, law career and challenges she faced as a woman in a male-dominated field. Much has changed in the world since then and for Morris who is now heading the Jeremiah Program in Rochester, helping women and children in at-risk situations move ahead two generations at a time.  

All moms know there’s just not enough time in the day to take care of themselves some days, but I do encourage you to take some time for yourself this Mother’s Day and as often as you can. If you are a mom, thank you for putting so much of yourself into making someone else’s life better. You are appreciated.

Jorrie

 

May/Jun
2018

Counselor Wanted! Location: Africa

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Written by Allison Loftus

DEEP DOWN INSIDE ME IS A PASSION TO PLANT IN EVERY WOMAN’S HEART THE FUNDAMENTAL LIFE VALUE THAT SHE IS LOVABLE, WORTHY AND SIGNIFICANT. AS A CHILD I KNEW MY LOVE FOR PEOPLE TRANSCENDED THE BOUNDARIES OF MY BACKYARD. WHEN I WAS 5 YEARS OLD, I REMEMBER TELLING MY MOM THAT GOD HAD CALLED ME TO HELP PEOPLE. I DIDN'T QUITE UNDERSTAND WHAT THAT MEANT UNTIL FATHER’S DAY 2007 WHEN I MISCARRIED BABY LOFTUS AT 13 WEEKS GESTATION. ON THAT DAY, A PATH WAS LAID OUT FOR ME THAT WOULD LEAD ME TO GRADUATING WITH A MASTER’S DEGREE IN COUNSELING AND PSYCHOLOGICAL SERVICES.

MY HEART KNEW

When the opportunity presented itself earlier this year for me to spend 15 days in Uganda providing mental health care for women of Kyampisi, my heart said, “Go.” My mind said many other things, but my heart did not hesitate. It knew I needed to go to Africa.

 

May/Jun
2018

I am a Beautiful Rochester Woman

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Written by Gina Dewink

IN THE SOLA SALON STUDIOS SHOPPES ON MAINE LOCATION IS A REMARKABLE WOMAN NAMED ACASIA WEGNER. SHE IS KNOWN LOCALLY FOR HER ARTISTIC AND FRIENDLY NATURE AND FOR THRIVING AGAINST HEALTH ODDS. 

STYLIST GETS A MAKEOVER

Wegner’s clients are what make the salon so special. Wegner exclaims, “We talk about our families and lives…I look forward to seeing every single one of them!” One such client is Gayle Kall, who nominated Wegner for the I Am a Beautiful Rochester Woman makeover. Kall emphasizes Wegner is “a role model in so many ways.”

 

May/Jun
2018

Like Mothers, Like Daughters

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Written by Emily Watkins Photography by Dawn Sanborn Photography

ONE ROCHESTER FAMILY HAS BEEN GETTING TOGETHER WEEKLY ON FRIDAYS AS LONG AS AYVA AND MAYA FOGARTY AND EMMA AND ABBY HESS CAN REMEMBER. THESE FOUR GIRLS WHO RANGE IN AGE FROM 14 TO 22 HAVE THE PRIVILEGE OF SPENDING A LOT OF TIME WITH THEIR MOMS, TRACEY FOGARTY AND HOLLY HESS, THEIR GRANDMA, BONNIE STEVENSON, AND THEIR GREAT-GRANDMA, MARGE BLOCK, BECAUSE IT IS A FAMILY PRIORITY TO SPEND FREQUENT QUALITY TIME TOGETHER.

POSITIVELY FAMILY & FRIENDS

They all share that a positive attitude has been modeled by both Marge and Bonnie. “We’re all blessed with Grandma’s demeanor, which is accepting and loving,” says Holly. Tracey adds, “We always look forward to getting together.”

 

May/Jun
2018

Nada Bastami

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Written by Danielle Teal

THE AMERICAN DREAM ENTICES MANY TO TAKE A RISK AND MAKE THE TREK TO THE UNITED STATES. WITH THE ILLUSION OF PROSPERITY AND SUCCESS, THE ALLURE IS APPEALING. ACCORDING TO THE PEW RESEARCH CENTER, MORE THAN 40 MILLION PEOPLE1 WHO LIVE IN THE UNITED STATES ARE IMMIGRANTS. THIS ACCOUNTS FOR 13.4 PERCENT OF THE U.S. POPULATION. IMMIGRATING TO THE UNITED STATES IS NO EASY TASK, AND EACH PERSON’S JOURNEY TO THE UNITED STATES IS UNIQUE. 

HOPES AND CHALLENGES

In 2013, Nada Bastami emigrated from Sudan after her husband was selected for the lottery. The “lottery” is the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. It releases up to 50,000 immigrant visas each year with a random selection process allowing entry to immigrants from various countries.2 Bastami, a mother of twins, had a dream to come to America because of better education opportunities for her children, gender equality, enhanced quality of living and the reputation for being the most immigrant-friendly society in the world. Once she arrived, she learned that while the United States had its perks, it wasn’t going to be easy.

 

May/Jun
2018

Rochester Area Moms

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Written by Gina Dewink

IMAGINE COMING HOME WITH YOUR NEWBORN BABY, WEARY AND ELATED, TO FIND SOMEONE HAD COOKED YOUR DINNER FOR YOU. NOW IMAGINE A TROOP OF PEOPLE BRINGING YOU MEALS WITHIN THOSE FIRST FEW DAYS. THIS IS WHAT THE ROCHESTER AREA MOMS GROUP CALLS THEIR MEAL TRAIN, AND IT’S JUST ONE OF THE MANY PERKS OF BEING A MEMBER OF THIS LOCAL GROUP.

Amanda Nigon-Crowley, head chair of Rochester Area Moms, says, “I always find it heartwarming to see busy families making time for one another, yet that’s just what Rochester Area Moms is all about—making time to connect.”

HANGING OUT IRL (IN REAL LIFE)

Rochester Area Moms is an activities and support group for mothers interested in connecting with other women and families who are at a similar stage in life. Originally called F.E.M.A.L.E., the group evolved into Mothers & More and eventually became Rochester Area Moms in 2016. The group has been active in Rochester for more than 18 years. “The majority of members join when their children are in the infant or early years of childhood,” Nigon-Crowley explains. “But many stay until the children become school-age.” The mission to empower and educate mothers while providing opportunities for connection is what drives the group.

 

May/Jun
2018

Jeremiah Program

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Written by Nicole L. Czarnomski Photography by Fagan Studios

THOUSANDS OF SINGLE MOTHERS IN SOUTH-EASTERN MINNESOTA RECEIVE SOME TYPE OF GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE AND STRUGGLE TO PROVIDE THE BASIC NEEDS FOR THEIR CHILDREN. JEREMIAH PROGRAM’S HOLISTIC APPROACH HELPS TRANSFORM TWO GENERATIONS AT A TIME BY PROVIDING EDUCATION, TOOLS AND RESOURCES FOR BOTH MOTHER AND CHILD.

JEREMIAH PROGRAM EXPANDS TO ROCHESTER

Jeremiah Program was founded in Minneapolis in 1993 by Michael J. O’Connell.  He gathered leaders in the area from the key sectors of business, education, faith, government and philanthropy to move the vision forward. The program has continued to expand into other cities across the nation.

 

May/Jun
2018

Have an Empowered Birth Experience

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Written by Brittany Baker

MANY PEOPLE PLAN FOR THEIR WEDDINGS, SPENDING TIME IN PREMARITAL COUNSELING, RESEARCHING VENUES AND HIRING VENDORS. SO WHY, WHEN IT COMES TO THE BIRTH OF OUR CHILDREN, DO WE NOT EQUIP OURSELVES IN THE SAME WAY? LET’S HEAR ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF PERINATAL EDUCATION FROM SOME LOCAL CHILDBIRTH EDUCATORS. 

HOW TO PREPARE FOR CHILDBIRTH 

Perinatal Education Coordinator Amy Fry at Olmsted Medical Center Women’s Health Pavilion has been coordinating and teaching perinatal education classes for 18 years. She works with expecting families through childbirth and breastfeeding classes and shares resources for additional support.  

 

May/Jun
2018

Mamma Mia!

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Written by Emily Watkins

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY! ON SUNDAY, MAY 13, WE TAKE TIME TO REMEMBER OUR MOMS AND OTHER WOMEN WHO HAVE CARED FOR US. OF COURSE WE LOVE OUR MOTHERS EVERY DAY, BUT THIS HOLIDAY GIVES US AN EXCUSE TO PAMPER THEM THE WAY THEY DESERVE. 

HONORING MOMS AND EMOTIONS

Although this day is a happy one for many, it’s important to remember that Mother’s Day can be a difficult time for those who have lost their mom. It can be a time to reflect and honor those women who have gone before us and whose memories we cherish. The woman who is credited with advocating for Mother’s Day did so to honor her own mother who had passed away.1 

 

May/Jun
2018

Handy Gal's Guide to Home Maintenance

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Written by Cindy Mennenga

THE BEGINNING OF SUMMER IS A TIME OF REBIRTH AND RENEWAL, A TIME TO ADORN THE EXTERIOR OF YOUR HOUSE WITH PLANTERS AND HANGING BASKETS, CREATING WATERFALLS OF COLOR. EARLY SUMMER IS ALSO A GREAT TIME TO CATCH UP ON LESS GLAMOROUS PROJECTS AND MAINTENANCE AROUND YOUR HOUSE.

TAKE A GOOD LOOK

Now is a great time to assess winter’s damage to your home. Notice the condition of your driveway; is it in need of upkeep or repairs? What about your yard? Do you need to sod or reseed some areas that suffered damage from our harsh winter? 

 

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