267 Dedicated to the Women in My Life

Today I take a trip down memory lane to honor and recognize some of the women I’ve been close to in my life who have shaped me and my life in some way. During Women’s History Month we tend to focus on the famous or unrecognized female “pioneers,” but a big theme in this show is that “women’s work” is so often undervalued and not rewarded in the same way as most “achievements” are celebrated. This show is me thanking all of the women in my life regardless of “achievement.” Your existence is enough! I couldn’t name and appreciate all of them and could have shared even more than I did about those I did recognize, but it’s a start of a practice that I hope to engage with more regularly. Here are the ones I celebrated on today’s show. My Great-Grandmother Viola Dietrich, Grandmother Shirley Cirillo, Grandmother Dorothy Widmann, Mom Sandra Widmann, Aunt and God-Mother Dawn Scarce, Sister Angela Widmann, first friend Stefanie Mulby (Rice), close pals from elementary, middle and high school Jodi Roberts (Finzel), Pamela Toshner (Stubbe) and Ann Casamassa, college Stephanie Berry (Sweeney) and Mary Lindsley, law school Karen O’Keeffe, Sandy Steinman and Jane Sigda, the Squirrels Joyce Manalo, Tiziana Agnello, Emily Furr and Belinda Downey, first Hudson Valley friend Sara Schneller and then a few of the many amazing women in the Hudson Valley who I am so grateful to call friends, Shana Falana, Neslihan Ulus Lord and Tarah Gay. Special shout outs to Tara Sanders for inspiring this show (and being a most amazing friend), Melissa Morse for being on “my team” in elementary school, Rita Bolla Lapinel, Shawn Harrison, Sarah Carlson, Carla Rozman and Marielena Ferrer who’ve been especially present in the past few years. There are so many who I can think of writing this who I left out like Erin Widmann (Kujawa) duh!, Holly Egan Arnold, Tracy Bettenhausen Jennings, Wendy Wein White, Melissa Walkowiak, Brandie Tetzlaff (McPherson), Claudia Beck (Giesie), Angela Hamilton (Stubbe), Connie DeBie-Bailey, Kathy Obler (Ben’s Mom), and of course my nieces! There are others. I don’t know how to end it. I feel like making an art project to honor them all. I love each of you and thank you for being a part of my long and winding life.

Here’s the playlist I mentioned for those interested in hearing more of the songs that got me through college and beyond.

Today’s show was engineered by Ian Seda of Radio Kingston.

Our show music is from Shana Falana !!!

Feel free to email me, say hello: she@iwantwhatshehas.org

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#117 “Surviving COVID with Girlfriends” with Jen Donovan, Ilissa Viviani, Michelle Renar, Kristen Uhl and Nellie Hill

Today I catch up with 5 women whose work and lives have been affected by the global pause. They share where they are at both personally and professionally, what’s been a challenge, what’s changed for the better or the worse, how they envision going back to work, what they’re grateful for, what they miss, and how they’ve leaned on each other to get through it all. Thanks for joining ladies! I hope y’all get to hug each other soon too!

Jennifer Donovan is back for a COVID catch up. Founder of Le Shag a full service hair and beauty salon based out of Kingston, NY. Jen has continuously evolved and innovated her business model to expand into Glo Spa, the Le Shag Capsule soon to be opening into Stone Ridge, Le Shag Weddings, Le Shag Academy and the Hudson Valley Beauty Collective. Today, she’s gathered some of her gal pals to talk with me about life during quarantine and after juggling the business pivots, childcare and loan paperwork, Jen is looking forward to a real vacation once this is over.

Ilissa Viviani, Le Shag Salon Coordinator, is currently working from home and fielding the numerous calls by clients eagerly awaiting their hair appointments. Le Shag has been offering color kits and Zoom consults in order to temporarily support their clients patiently awaiting their re-opening. She is also excitingly going to be partnering on the new Le Shag Capsule in Stone Ridge. Seven months pregnant, Ilissa has enjoyed the slowing down and connecting with local Kelder Farms for her fresh local veggies each week.

Michelle Renar, Owner of Hudson Valley Body Works, opened her small private practice in the historic stockade district of uptown Kingston in 2004. Prior to that Michelle interned at the Caprini Pain Treatment Center and the Ronald McDonald House in Manhattan and helped facilitate the first massage therapy program for the Kingston Hospital, working for 4 years in the hospital setting providing massage therapy for OB patients. She is certified in cancer and terminal illness massage, she is also a Certified Educator of Infant Massage and a Registered Diagnostic Ultrasonographer. Michelle has been connecting with others in the massage community to build best practices and share thoughts and plans for moving forward once things re-open, but is also hoping to maintain the balance that she’s achieved with this forced slow down of her life.

Nellie Hill, is the Owner of Nellie Hill Events, a boutique wedding design and production company for creative couples planning a destination wedding in the Hudson Valley, Catskills and beyond. Nellie has been producing and designing events for the past 10 years in the Hudson Valley. She has had a passion for parties and events from the time she could walk and talk. Nellie graduated from Marist College with a bachelor’s degree in Communications and has a background in the service industry. Nellie just had her second child during COVID and shares how she’s most looking forward to celebrating her new baby and connecting with family when we’re out of quarantine.

Kristen Uhl, is the Director of the Very Little Red Schoolhouse, a NY licensed day care center that is located in Hurley, NY. They are an infant and toddler program that offers care for children six weeks to three years of age who strives to provide a fun and safe learning environment for the children to grow every single day. Kristen struggled with whether to stay opened or closed and eventually made the difficult decision to protect herself and her staff and close for the remainder of the NY PAUSE. Kristen is grateful to her girlfriends for their support during the challenges of the past few months, and looks forward to the return of big, messy family dinners with her many siblings.

Thank YOU Ladies!

Today’s show was engineered by Manuel Blas of Radio Kingston, www.radiokingston.org.

We heard music from our fave, Shana Falana, http://www.shanafalana.com/

Feel free to email me, say hello: she@iwantwhatshehas.org

Leave me a voicemail with your thoughts or a few words about who has what you want and why! (845)481-3429

** Please: SUBSCRIBE to the pod and leave a REVIEW wherever you are listening, it helps other users FIND IT 🙂

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