The Artist’s Way Summer 2011 Teleclass Explores Creative Living

Kim Childs, Artist's Way instructorFor more than a decade, Kim Childs has facilitated spring and fall creative recovery workshops in New England based on the book, The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity, by Julia Cameron. This summer Childs is leading her first teleclass on the book, allowing people to do the course from home or while away on vacation. The 12-week intensive takes place over the telephone from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday nights from June 8 through August 24. A maximum of ten students will be enrolled.

“In the past, I never offered The Artist’s Way during the summer months because so many of us travel,” says Childs, “but I’m excited to give people this opportunity during a time of year ripe for creative pursuits and pleasures.” She adds that The Artist’s Way is for anyone who wants to revisit, expand, or explore their creativity. “People often think they have to be an artist to do this workshop,” Childs explains, “but it’s really about living as passionately and authentically as you can, and making your life your canvas.”

The course fee is $330, and participants must purchase a copy of the book. Childs is offering a free introductory call from 7:30-8:30 p.m. on June 1, for those who wish to know more about the course.

 For more information and to register for the free June 1 introductory call visit

Pilates Conference and Awaken Wellness Fair June 2-5, 2011

The advanced pilates class at the Art of Control Pilates Studio in Purchase.

Fitness enthusiasts of all experience levels—from personal trainers seeking continuing education to beginners who want to try a new technique without pressure—are invited to the Pilates Conference and Awaken Wellness Fair, to be held at Purchase College June 2-5. The event will feature workshops, workouts, performances, and an expo of local businesses devoted to opening the mind while strengthening the body.
Visitors can attend one or all days of the event, which begins with a pre-conference on June 2. Some of the best-known Pilates teachers and fitness experts in the country will be teaching at the conference, including Mari Winsor sharing her new Pilates techniques, and Jay Grimes, who worked with Joseph Pilates himself. The event concludes with the Awaken Wellness Fair from noon to 5 p.m. June 5. A body-mind-spirit expo that has been popular in Westchester for the past decade, the Awaken Wellness Fair offers interactive wellness activities, health screenings, products and services that promote a healthy lifestyle, and wellness providers demonstrating the latest in both technology and “rediscovered” ancient healing.
The Pilates Conference and Awaken Wellness Fair is a collaboration between Simona Cipriani, owner and director of Art of Control, and Paula Caracappa, promoter of Awaken Wellness Fairs. Art of Control, a private studio located at Purchase College, offers Pilates, massage therapy and Feldenkrais to both the community and Purchase students.

For more info about the Pilates Conference, visit or call 914.251.7842. Learn more about the Awaken Wellness Fair at

New Name, New Hours for the Earth Lore Store in Pawling

Earth L’ore Gems and Minerals in Pawling

Deciding that the term “eco boutique” no longer reflects the main focus of Earth Lore’s merchandise, Lisa Hickey has renamed her Pawling store Earth L’ore Gems and Minerals.

“Jewelry, geodes, crystals, fossils, and lapidary sculpture is really what this store is all about,” says Hickey. Shoppers will still find a sprinkling of beautiful, eco-friendly giftware, plush animals (endangered and extinct), and hand-blown crystal globes, as well as the area’s largest selection of Woodstock wind chimes.

Hickey is known in Pawling for her fabulous window displays. Her “Peace on Earth” window for the holidays took first prize in a contest among local merchants. A current exhibit of lapidary art at Earth L’ore Gems and Minerals features a snake sculpted from serpentine stone, with a matrix of two hatching eggs, which the store has whimsically dubbed “Oh, Momma Mia.”

Earth L’ore Gems and Minerals is located at 2 Fairway Drive in Pawling, NY. As of May, the store will be open Monday and Thursday from 11a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. For more information, call 845.855.8899 or visit

New Organic Face-Lifting and Cellulite Treatment at Le Petite Spa, Organic Vegan Day Spa

Mary Prenon, owner of Le Petite Spa

Le Petite Spa, an organic vegan day spa, is offering a new “face-lifting” and cellulite treatment featuring volcanic ash clay from the Aleutian Islands.  The ash contains microscopic particles that absorb into the skin and remove toxins, says Spa owner Mary Prenon. The skin’s underlying tissues respond by releasing fluids to dilute those toxins; when the fluids recede, the tissues become more compact and tighter, she says. “The organic clay facial mud masque gives your skin an immediate pulling-upwards feel, helping fight the effects of time in a natural, healthy way,” Prenon says. “As a result, your complexion appears firmer, smoother and more fit.”

The masque can also be used on the arms and legs to stimulate the release of toxins, cellulite and trapped waste fluids, therefore diminishing the appearance of dimpling, Prenon says. “There are a lot of products out there that claim to treat cellulite, but it was important for me to find a natural, organic product that contains no harmful preservatives,” she explains. “Of course the only permanent way to get rid of cellulite is to engage in a regular routine of both cardiovascular and strength-building exercises. But in the meantime, I think this is a great solution for dealing with cellulite.”

Le Petite Spa is offering the Volcanic Ash Facial for $110 and Volcanic Ash Cellulite Treatment for $75. For an appointment or more information, call 914.552.0983 or email Info:

A Meditation to Honor Lost Loved Ones with Psychologist Dr. Debbie Lang

Dr. Debbie Lang

On Sunday, May 22, from 7 to 9:30 p.m., psychologist Dr. Debbie Lang will host the first annual meditation for those grieving the loss of a loved one. The event offers people an opportunity to honor their loved ones with a meditation, candle lighting, story, anecdote, or moment. The meditation takes place under the stars in Somers, and participants are asked to bring a blanket or chair.

Dr. Lang offers ongoing workshops in meditation and guided visualization for women, men, children and couples. Her new CD, A Moment Among the Stars, offers original guided meditations to begin the journey to mind/body wellness. Lang says that mindful meditation and guided visualization are two techniques that allow one to heal from the inside out. These techniques can boost the immune system and endorphin levels, reduce stress, and turn dis-ease into ease, she says.

To reserve a place at the meditation, order a CD, or learn more about ongoing workshops, call Dr. Debbie Lang at 914.248.6733.

Be a Natural Beauty, Inside and Out with Organic Hair & Skin Care, Massage & Acupuncture

Helen and Jonathan Thaler

Helen Thaler, who with her husband Jonathan owns Nature’s Organic Hair, Skin Care, Massage & Acupuncture Studio, says she sees many women do exactly the wrong thing in their quest for younger-looking hair: They turn to harsh, chemical-based commercial products and dyes. “These strip hair of its natural nutrients, leaving it dry, frizzy and lifeless,” Thaler says. “And the colors tend to be overly bright—obviously not natural.”

A stylist and colorist for more than 25 years in Toronto, Thaler has offered organic, all-natural colors, highlights, perms and straighteners since she began. These products deliver results, like 100-percent grey coverage, without damaging hair, she says. Because she believes in “proper nutrients and positive, loving energy” for the skin and body, as well, Thaler also offers healthy, natural skincare products and services, providing free consultations on hair, skin and body. Her organic treatments can correct pH imbalances caused by unhealthy chemicals.

Jonathan Thaler has been a licensed acupuncturist and massage therapist for 22 years. He incorporates shiatsu and craniofacial therapy, yoga, nutrition and lifestyle counseling, and acupuncture (including cosmetic acupuncture) to help clients de-stress and live healthier. He custom-tailors each session to his client’s individual needs. “Helen and I often share clients and help transform individuals inside and out,” he says.

Nature’s Organic Hair, Skin Care, Massage & Acupuncture Studio is located at 1220 North Ridge Rd., Shrub Oak, NY. To make an appointment, call 914.528.8770. Mention this news brief and receive 15 percent off any product.

Marking a Great Year for an Alternative Pharmacy in Mahopac

The family behind Lake Mahopac Pharmacy & Surgical

Lake Mahopac Pharmacy & Surgical is celebrating its one-year anniversary as Mahopac’s hometown pharmacy. Husband and wife co-owners Nagi Wissa, RPh, and Paula Chamoun say they are amazed at the amount of support and gratitude they’ve received from local residents. Customers from other parts of Putnam and Westchester counties are also traveling to the pharmacy, not only for the extra attention that the owners provide, but also to learn about and try alternative remedies.

Lake Mahopac Pharmacy offers specialized prescriptions, along with herbal and homeopathic remedies. Wissa and Chamoun pride themselves on continuously updating and expanding their line of natural remedies. They report that many people are turning to natural beauty and health products and without understanding all of their options and the ways in which alternative remedies interact with various medicines. Lake Mahopac Pharmacy & Surgical provides both education and advice as it continues to expand its line of products. They also offer a popular medicine recycling program and free delivery, in addition to accepting all insurances.

Lake Mahopac Pharmacy & Surgical is located at 559 Rt. 6, Mahopac, NY. For more information call 845.208.0424 or visit

Mamapalooza Celebrates Women, Mothers and Families this Saturday, May 14, 2011

Kids rock out on stage at Mamapalooza

Mamapalooza, a free music, arts and health festival for women and families, will be held Saturday, May 14 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Kensico Dam Plaza in Valhalla. This is the seventh year for this event featuring live entertainment as well as information, products and activities promoting women’s health and fitness, family life and green living.

The festival kicks off with Heather Buyers’ “Walk Live Westchester” exercise program. Westchester County’s Office for Women, Raging Grannies and other nonprofits will be on hand to provide information on health, wellness and social services for women and families, including victims of domestic violence. There will be shopping, with a farmer’s market, natural cleaning products and soaps, and foods to sample and purchase; there will also be activities for children. Massachusetts Six brings folk, rock and blues to the stage. Visitors are encouraged to bring a chair or blanket and spend the day listening to local music and learning how to make their lives better. Free giveaways and raffles will continue throughout the day. Admission and parking are free, and the festival will be held rain or shine.

Mamapalooza 2011 is coordinated by Paula Caracappa of PPC Group LLC, creators of the Awaken Fairs, and presented by the Motherhood Foundation, an organization that creates and presents visual, literary and performing arts events for mothers.

Kensico Dam Plaza is at the north end of the Bronx River Parkway in Valhalla and can also be reached via Route 22. For more information, visit, call 877.711.MOMS (6667), or call Westchester County Parks at 914.864.PARK.

A Greener Yorktown Community Day Features Next Gen Arts Festival May 14, 2011

Lisa Fine, Organizer of Yorktown Community Day with McGruff the Crime Dog

Saturday, May 14 is the date for the 22nd Annual Yorktown Community Day, hosted by the Yorktown Parks and Recreation Department and Central School District. The event takes place from 12 to 5 p.m. on the campus of Mildred E. Strang Middle School. The day features music performed by local youth representing the 2011 Next Gen Arts Festival and a Green Energy Fair, highlighting environmental issues and sustainable living resources in the area.

Yorktown Community Day features many family-oriented activities including entertainment, music, Child ID services, a display of Yorktown’s emergency vehicles, and a business showcase and exhibition area. Kids of all ages can enjoy hula-hoop, jump rope, and balloon blowing contests, a water balloon toss, and inflatable bounce houses provided by Just for Fun Entertainment. For senior citizens, Fieldhome will again host a sitting area for playing cards, having coffee and enjoying the day.

Civic groups, schools, community organizations, and local businesses are invited to sign up and participate in this special day for Yorktown. All proceeds from the event benefit drug prevention programs for Yorktown youth. The 2011 Next Gen Arts Festival, spearheaded by the Yorktown Teen Center, is month-long community festival featuring the creativity of young people in the areas of film, music, photography, poetry and fine arts.

 For more information or to participate, contact Lisa Fine, LF Communications, Inc. at 914.243.9761. The Strang Middle School is located at 2701 Crompond Road in Yorktown Heights.

Bau-Biologie: The Holistic Approach to Natural Building

By Lou Levy

After World War II, Germany was left to rebuild countless structures leveled or ruined by the fighting. Unfortunately, many of the new homes and commercial structures were built out of cement block and other unnatural materials, without proper design, drainage and ventilation. Together, these building techniques created very unhealthy interior environments for the residents of these homes and buildings.

In the late 1960s, German professor Anton Schneider, PhD, began researching how a building’s environment affects the health of its residents. In 1983, Schneider founded the Institute of Building Biology & Ecology Neubeuern (IBN), devoted to extensive study and scientific research on the subject. The IBN formulated the concept of building biology, or Bau-Biologie—the treatment of the ecology of a home or structure.

Bau-Biologie incorporates specific techniques in the building of a house or addition, treating the structure as though it were another skin. These methods aim for a design that is in harmony with nature. They consider how the building site offers beneficial exposure to the sun as well as protection from the elements; they seek to ensure proper drainage and avoid harmful geomagnetic energies under common-use and sleeping areas.

In Bau-Biologie, building methods and materials are environmentally low-impact and sustainable. On the structure’s exterior, this translates to an all-natural wall and roof system that functions as both a filter and a shell. The exterior is air-tight, but it also has the ability to absorb and filter excess moisture and toxins, allowing them to pass through without any condensation points.

The structure’s interior offers a harmonic environment, with plenty of natural lighting, good ventilation, radiant heat for comfortable air and surface temperatures, and mitigation of noise and electromagnetic energies. Materials and finishes are eco-friendly; unlike many commonly used building products, they do not outgas toxins or radioactivity.

The techniques of Bau-Biologie can be applied as individual design elements or as a comprehensive design system. Whether these techniques are adapted to a remodel, a building addition or an entire house, the goal is the same: to create a living environment that will re-energize and sustain you.

Lou Levy Construction is a design/build firm specializing in custom alterations, renovations and architectural additions and building, maintaining a 95 percent dust-free environment during construction. It also specializes in green and nontoxic applications, passive and active solar installations and retrofits, and the techniques of Bau-Biologie. For more information about Bau-Biologie or other natural building techniques, contact Lou Levy Construction at 845.225.7377 or

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