My Fitness Routine

I make fitness a priority in my life for a few reasons.

I make fitness a priority in my life for a few reasons.  Not only do I appreciate the health aspect of staying physically fit, but I feel rejuvenated and full of positive energy after a good workout.  Exercising clears my mind and helps me focus throughout the day.  If I don’t stick to my routine, I feel completely off kilter.  Working out preserves my sanity and, now that I have children, sets a good example for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

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Consistency is so important.
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My focus is on health and fitness.
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Whatever you do to stay fit, stick with it.

My own routine is consistent in timing even though each work out is unique.  Three days a week, I work out with an amazing personal trainer:  Bill Curcio of Curcio Training.  I worked out with Bill religiously for a year before I got married.  He once told me I’d stop coming to our regular sessions after my wedding, but I didn’t believe him.  He was right though; life and work simply got in the way and for years I didn’t work with a trainer at all.  However, a couple of years ago I committed to getting back into my previous routine and am again training with Bill.  Three days a week at 5:30 a.m. we focus on interval training and Cross Fit.  One morning each week, I’ll do a three mile run instead.  I try to never do the same thing two days in a row, but use interval training, Tabata, and Cross Fit to focus on my core.  The continuity I find in staying with this routine is a big part of my own personal wellness.

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Some interval training exercises.
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Cross Fit!
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Great leg workout.

In addition to having a consistent routine for working out, I also have preferences for fitness wear.  I love Lululemon‘s workout clothes.  They are comfortable, no fuss, and have a great fit.  As with anything else in life, it’s a matter of liking what I know is right for me.  One thing about Lululemon that you have to keep in mind is that once they sell out of a certain item, you can’t get it again.  When you find something you really like, it’s best to stock up while you can!  For shoes, I love New Balance.  They are great for training and light running.

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Lululemon In The Flow Crop II
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Free to Be Bra
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Clarity Tank from Lululemon
workout shoes
New Balance

What are your routines for staying healthy and fit?


Fall Gardening

This year it was a pleasant surprise to see my gardens showing color longer than usual.

This year it was a pleasant surprise to see my gardens showing color longer than usual. The warmer weather has kept the gardens alive. I am not a fall or winter person, but I love to see the trees turn and with the red, pink and orange hues, the gardens take on a whole other dimension.  When planting the garden you have to plan so there will be constant color throughout the season. There are quite a few plants that bloom late in the season, adding color to the gardens into the fall.

Hydrangea Trees
Hydrangea Trees

Hydrangea Trees are a wonderful addition to your garden if you have space for them.  I have a few different varieties, but one that I love is Hydrangea paniculata “Pink Diamond,” which starts out white and turns a deep pink and is so beautiful this time of year.  Other late blooming plants are Chelone “Hot Lips,” a dark green leaf with a pink flower; Chelone “Alba,” which has a white flower, and Anemones “September Charm,” which is a wonderful plant with a delicate light pink flower.  I also have Asters, a vibrant light blue plant variety called “Woods Light Blue” that is quite gorgeous.  Eupatorium Rugosum “Chocolate” is a variety that has white flowers with chocolate leaves and looks great mixed in a bouquet of roses.

Chelone “Hotlips," Pennisetum “Karley Rose," and Anemone
Chelone “Hotlips,” Pennisetum “Karley Rose,” and Anemone

Of course knock out roses and shrub roses will keep going for quite awhile.  “Lady Elsie May” is an ever-blooming shrub rose which is great.  Dahlias make great cut flowers this time of year.  Grasses they are the true beauty of a fall garden, especially when the sun glistens through them and they sway in the breeze.  There are so many different varieties to choose from.  A few of my favorites are Miscanthus Sinensis “ Morning Light,”  Penniseteum Orientle “Karly Rose,” and Panicum V. “Red Switch Grass.”   Of course, do not forget the sedums!  “Autumn Joy” is my favorite.


As I write this the gardens are fading and in a few weeks it will be time to get the gardens ready for the winter by cutting back the perennials and cleaning up the beds. If you have any delicate trees or fruit trees, you will want to cover them for the winter.  It is also the time to think about next year.  Fall is a great time to plant any new plants and shrubs, and to transplant any plants that you want to move or divide.   It is also the time to plant bulbs for spring flowers and place a thin layer of mulch down.  When this work is done, you’ll have all winter to look forward to new blooms in spring!

Now is the time to shop for bulbs!
Now is the time to shop for bulbs!

Top Designers Revamp Long Island Ronald McDonald House

Recently, a group of top designers participated in a special show house event called Project Design to revamp the Long Island Ronald McDonald House.

One of the most difficult challenges a family can face is the serious illness of a child.  Families often travel far from home to get the best possible care from specialists at state-of-the art hospitals.  Being far from home, family, and friends makes the situation more stressful.  Ronald McDonald House Charities seeks to support the families of sick children by giving them a home-like place to stay.  Every Ronald McDonald House provides meals, playrooms, and private bedrooms.  Being near their child and medical team without worrying about day-to-day tasks allows families to focus on the healing process and stay in touch with hospital staff.   With 59 local RMH Chapters around the world, this important charity is such a worthy cause.

Long Island Ronald McDonald House
Long Island Ronald McDonald House

Recently, a group of top designers participated in a special show house event called Project Design, sponsored by The Ronald McDonald House of Long Island, Kravet, Inc., and New York Cottages and Gardens Magazine.  These designers didn’t revamp just any home, but the Long Island Ronald McDonald House.  This particular RMH services over a thousand families a year, providing much needed stability and support for parents and siblings of sick children.  The many rooms of this RMH needed to be updated; turning the project into a show house served to bring additional funds to the charity.  Participating designers included Amanda Nisbet, Anthony Baratta, Bunny Williams, Danielle Colding, Kerry Delrose, Jamie Drake, Drew McGukin, Dwell Studio, Elaine Griffin, Eric Cohler, Kate Singer, Kim E. Courtney, Mabley Handler, Margreet Cevasco, Mathew Patrick Smyth, Meg Braff, Jennifer Mehditash, Michael Herold, Michael Tavano, Jon Call, Nick Olsen, Pappas Miron, Suzanne Costa, Vasi Ypsilantis, Tilton Fenwick, and Young Huh.  As the home’s original designer, Anthony Baratta served as Creative Director of Project Design.  Unlike most show houses where the designers’ rooms are dismantled after the event, the work done at the Long Island Ronald McDonald House will stay in place to provide a beautiful environment for families who need a special home away from home.

Eric Cohler's design plan.
Eric Cohler’s design plan.
Design scheme from Mr. Call Designs
Design scheme from Mr. Call Designs
Sketch and fabric samples by Jennifer Mehditash
Sketch and fabric samples by Jennifer Mehditash

The finished results of Project Design will be revealed at a Designer Showcase Gala on October 10.  The evening will include a tour of the newly designed rooms, silent auction, fine dining, cocktails, and entertainment.  From Friday, Oct 11 to Monday, Oct 14, visitors can tour the home for Open House Weekend.  If you’re in the area, support the Ronald McDonald House by visiting for a tour!