Spring Show NYC Raises Funds for ASPCA

Jayne-ThompsonMay 1 marks the opening night for the 2013 Spring Show NYC (by invitation only) at the Park Avenue Armory.  This particular event will be used to benefit the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. A room – designed by Brett Beldock of Brett Design – will showcase artworks with animal motifs.  From the sales of these, $25 will be donated to the ASPCA.

The actual Spring Show NYC is open to the public the following day until the 5th May, at the same address. It is being orchestrated by the Art and Antique Dealers League of America (AADLA) and sponsored by 1stdibs.com.

Exhibition perusers can select a variety of items brought to the show from over 50 galleries and dealers.  These include: Kendall Fine Art (Stand 120), Phoenix Ancient Art (Stand 323), European Decorative Arts Company (Stand 310), Schillary Fine Art, Inc. (Stand 111), Jayne Thompson Antiques (424), etc.  Fifteen of these will be bringing their exhibit to the show for the first time.

Contained in Beldock’s room on opening night will also be her personally-designed wallpapers.  She explained that these really make “the glorious antiques sing,” which in turn have a significant impact on the strength of the items.


A Guide to Keep Your Schools Safe

In the face of tragedies like those that occurred recently at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, many schools around the country are scrambling to improve their safety policies. Some schools simply talk about changes, while others are actually taking action. There are many resources available for schools and community groups that want to improve upon their security measures, and one of these was just produced by Frank Storch, a Security Consultant and Coordinator for CERT in Baltimore.

An expert in the field of security for over 35 years, Frank Storch has specifically focused his attention on Jewish school throughout North American and has recently completed an essential guide called Keep Your School Safe. This new guide provides schools with a thorough review of their existing security measures and with a comprehensive way to evaluate new measures they should undertake.

As Frank Storch of Baltimore explains at the beginning of his guide, “Based on over 35 years of hands-on safety and security consulting experience, and my role as Coordinator of the Northern Park Heights CERT (Community Emergency Response Team), I believe that every school can benefit from re-evaluating and updating its safety and security measures. This is due to the constantly changing nature of outside threats, the increasing availability of new equipment and methods, and the need for staff and students to be up to date on their safety and security training.

In this light, I present this “Keep Your School Safe” guide. The purpose of this guide is to help your school ask the right questions, the answers to which will help you create a safety and security program customized to your own particular needs. After completing an assessment of your security needs and outlining a plan to address them (including the anticipated budget), consider applying for a Homeland Security grant, as well as to private foundations, charitable organizations, non-profit and for-profit companies, and local sponsors for funding.”

Bulldogs Compete in Local Beauty Pageant

Yesterday, Drake University celebrated its bulldog mascot in the 34th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest. Held in Des Moines, Iowa, the contest participants include bulldogs of all ages. Creatively dressed as pirates, ballerinas, bikers and more, the bulldogs kicked off the Drake Relays event which will continue throughout the week. This year’s contest winner was Huckleberry, a four-year-old bulldog who belongs to Steven and Stephanie Hein of Norwalk, Iowa.

Here are some photos from the event:

Huckleberry Wins!
Huckleberry Wins!


Jazmine Josephine
Jazmine Josephine

Combining Busy Business Lives with Marathon Running

Many high powered executives use exercise as an outlet for their energy and as a way to stay fit and energized. While working incredibly long days at the office, it makes sense that running would be an ideal outlet for the busy executive, as it doesn’t box the runner into time or space constraints. Running can be done early in the morning or at the last hours of the day, from any city where the business person might find him or herself.

As Suellen Hughes, a marathon runner and creator Transforme for executive coaching explains on a blog post, running marathons and businesses are very similar. She wrote that there are some obvious similarities between marathon running and running a business, “like the need to have a vision, long and short term goals, a plan, and the metrics to tell you whether or not you’re on track.” Furthermore, she explains that training for a marathon takes a lot of time and that planning and scheduled activities are vital for both running and running businesses.

Similarly, Seth Fischer of Oasis Management is a business executive in Hong Kong. He finds the time to juggle his incredibly busy work schedule with marathon running. The list of his marathon wins and participations is long and full. He was a first race winner in the Lantau Mountain Marathon half marathon race on January 9, 2011; In the Hysan Healthy Hike & Run in Hong Kong, he placed third overall on March 18, 2012. After that race, he said, “Just happy I finished. Very hot conditions.” During one race, on January 31 of 2010, he actually confused the starting times and was last to start the half marathon. Nonetheless, he managed to come in 6th overall.

Another avid runner, Griselda K. Togobo, is the founder of AWOVI Consulting Ltd. This is a company that is devoted to increasing the success rate and profits of small business in America. After she was accepted to run across the north of England on September 16th with 54,000 runners, Togobo started to notice how running and running businesses are similar. As she wrote, “As I found out, training for a marathon (just like growing a successful business) needs more than the average prescribed routines. You need to work on your stamina. To make real progress towards your goals, you need to run the real course, train with the right people, eat right and stay on course with the right training and mindset. You need to push yourself outside of your comfort competencies stretching yourself to develop stamina. Stamina is something most small business owners don’t have, the least sign of trouble and most people shut down and give up.”

Certainly, these marathon runners and the many other business executives like them who combine their passions can learn important skills from both their running and their business lives.


Breast Milk Jewelry: Cute or Creepy?

Mommy Milk CreationsLots of young mothers are backing a new trend: jewelry made from breast milk. Though many have deemed the idea adorable and meaningful, others have called the creations “gross” or “creepy.”

The keepsakes, with include pendants and bracelets, were first offered on craft site Etsy.com by Mommy Milk Creations. Run by Allicia Mogavero, the online shop transforms breast milk into precious mementos by preserving it in resin and shaping it into figures like tiny hands or feet. All the buyer needs to do is provide two tablespoons of their milk in a zip-lock bag.

Mogavero was surprised by the enthusiastic response. She can “barely keep up” with orders, she said. Customers have called the jewelry a “gorgeous reminder of such a special time,” and a wonderful way to commemorate “the bonding experience you had with your child.”

Ms. Mogavero explained how she came up with the idea.

“You only make breast milk for such a short period and it was amazing to me that this milk that I made was able to make my child thrive as well as he was. This was simply amazing to me but the thought of him no longer nursing and be not making milk was sad in a way.

I thought long and hard about a way for me to preserve the short time that I made the milk. Through lots of trials and experiments I came up with a system to preserve my breast milk.

I made myself a bracelet and started making them for family members with their breast milk, word of mouth requests started coming in and the rest is history!”

What do you think of breast milk jewelry?

“50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus” to Debut on Holocaust Remembrance Day

Journalist Steven Pressman will debut his first film on HBO on April 8th, Holocaust Remembrance Day, in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. The Shapell Manuscript Foundation has hundreds of Holocaust-related documents, including manuscripts, letters and journals from countries across Europe. Pressman’s documentary, called “50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus”, is based on a hidden, unpublished manuscript of a woman who fought for the lives of children during the Holocaust.

Pressman first learned of the unsung Philadelphian heroes Gilbert and Eleanor Kraus when his wife, their granddaughter, discovered Eleanor’s manuscript. The text explained the Kraus’s mission: to rescue Jewish children before the outbreak of World War II. Pressman traveled through Europe, and later to archives in Jerusalem and Washington D.C., to learn more about the Kraus’s efforts. He began collecting footage in 2010, and has finally gathered enough information to reveal the full story.

The film was written, directed and produced by Steven Pressman. Mamie Gummer is the voice of Eleanor Kraus, and Alan Alda narrates. The work includes archival footage and photographs, while nine of the rescued children share their experiences with the audience first hand.