Kids are watching…

By Becky Andrews

 

I’ve done it. More than likely, you have too. It happens all the time. Now, thanks to social media, the damage is done before you can change your profile photo.
Moments after I’ve given myself judge and jury power concerning something someone else has done, I can feel the karmic shift commence.

The scenarios can be different but the retribution will be the same. Payback.

When you feel the need, avoid saying it in front of an audience. More important than that I beg of you, DO NOT post your feelings on social media as this will yield an even larger audience to witness those words when they inevitably come back to bite you. People will forget many things about you. They will forget your name. They will forget your birthday. They will even forget you have two kids. But they will NEVER, EVER forget what you post on Twitter, Facebook, Tumbler, Instagram, etc. Especially if it makes you look like a judgmental little twit.

Worse than being a judgmental little twit is feeding the beast. For instance, I know it’s better to ignore obnoxious, aggressive and embarrassing posts, but instead I soak it in. Reading over and over to anyone that will listen. Mostly just fascinated by how a human being could post something so aggressively unappealing.

In addition to starving the beast, here’s a couple social media behaviors that need attention.

Stop saying and/or posting:
“My kids would/will never… have potty training accidents, eat chocolate for breakfast, curse, talk back to me, cheat on a test, sneak out of the house, and lie about cheating on a test or sneaking out of the house.” The list can go on and on.

Our kids are amazing. They are smart, lovely creatures. They are also human. This means, they will make mistakes. Some small, like not finishing homework. Some big, like underage drinking.

Before tempting fate and discussing how your superior parenting ensures little Timmy or Tonya will never do anything short of perfection, stop and think about getting a phone call that contradicts everything you thought about little Timmy or Tonya. Instead of gossiping and sharing your opinion with 1,500 people you don’t really know, talk to your kids. Your opinion will count more at home.

Now let’s talk about another scenario that is pretty common in towns across the US. That’s the mindless and sometimes gleeful sharing of another’s misfortune. Before looking (then laughing) at photos on your mug shot app or playing the role of town crier to inform everyone about whose home is in foreclosure, who just filed for divorce, or who is having an affair, this is probably the best time to bone up on the laws of karma or reaping what you sow.

We share inspirational idioms, prayers and photos freely.  We want to raise strong daughters and respectful men. We want to be a part of making the world a better place to live. But until those “wants” become “needs,” in the eyes of our children, we are acting just like the mean girls and boys we tell our kids to stay away from.
Email becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com

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Champagne is for Winners and Beginners

No doubt you are winning at something if you are drinking Champagne, especially French Champagne. The stuff is golden nectar of the gods poured in a glass. Here’s to hoping that this New Year’s Eve you can stare at the sparkling section of your local wine purveyor with some basic understanding of the labels. It can be confusing especially when there is so much French involved. “It’s all French to me.” as someone recently said. But is it really with Prosecco and Cava involved? And of course there are the delicious domestics. Sparkling wine is made around the world but only called Champagne if it is made in the Champagne region in France using a specific method. Methode-Champenoise is a labor intensive and costly process by which the wine undergoes a secondary fermentation in the bottle, creating bubbles. Champagne can range in sweetness based on the dosage, or how much sugar is added. Sugar is often but not always added during the traditional Methode-Champenoise and what amount is added will dictate the label. Below is a list of designations starting from least amount of sugar added to most amount.

          Doux- 50+ g/L

          Demi-Sec- 33–50 g/L

Sec-17-35 g/L

Exta-Sec -12-20 g/L

Brut- 0–12-g/L

Extra- Brut – 0–6 g/L

Brut Nature – 0–3 g/L

*Extra Dry is found on domestic sparkling wine bottles and actually means less dry than brut but not sec or secco which would be deemed sweeter.

At the shop we have many options ranging in price from Louis Perdrier sparkling wine to vintage Dom Perignon. Vintage champagnes are made from grapes grown in a single exemplary growing season. These are supreme examples of what champagne can be and are therefore often costly. Perhaps a great way to celebrate an abundant year with friends and family is with a vintage champagne. We stock a couple that deliver Dom taste without the price such as L’Armandier-Bernier and the famed Bollinger, favored by James Bond. We also have a selection of the best value prosecco, cava and sparkling wines from Spain, Italy and the USofA. Here are some of our favorite NV (non-vintage) and vintage French bottles we stock for your convenience and pleasure.

Louis Perdrier NV Brut– High quality French sparkling wine. Notes of apples, some richness with a citrus finish. Great for a budget and any party!

Forget Brimont NV Brut– Sophisticated champagne in the $25.00 range from family run winery. Offering notes of ripe gala apples, ginger and biscuit. Shows fine balance and elegance.

Billecart-Salmon NV Brut Blanc de Blancs– Family owned and run Champagne House. Deep, wide aromas—cumin, buttery pie crust. Shows good length and presence on the palate; flavors are zesty citrus enveloped in a smooth minerality. A good apéritif.

Billecart-Salmon NV Brut Rosé Pale strawberry-pink color. Light raspberry and white pepper aromas, with a raspberry crème brûlée flavor profile. Clean and dry, with good length and heft.

Moet & Chandon NV Imperial Rosé This solid, muscular rosé might be the ticket to turning a red wine devotee on to Champagne. Flinty around the edges, with tight, tart red fruit.

Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin 2004 La Grand Dame– Intense, serious and persistent. Yellow stone fruit flavors are bright but kept in check with mineral, herb and citrus peel through the finish.

L’ Armandier- Bernier 2002 Premier Cru– Growers Sophia and Pierre L’Armandier focus on organic farming. They use low doasage or no dosage in their Blanc de Blanc which is 80% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Noir as traditional method dictates.This vintage is broad and rich, scoring over 95 pts with Robert Parker. It is clean, refreshing and fabulous to pair with a New Years Dinner.

Bollinger La Grand Annee 2004 Extra- Brut– exceptional vintage with 90 plus ratings from Parker and Tanzer! Notes of toasted bread and candied fruit, rhubarb, notes of exotic spices. Perfectly balanced and pleasing in any application. And this champagne is featured in James Bond films! So, you can drinky it and be classy and continental like that! 

Any way you choose to celebrate you will win with these selections! Remember whatever you choose, to drink responsibly. 

 

 

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It’s the small things…..

By Angel Kane

 

Just the other morning I jumped into my car as usual.

As usual, I was running a little late.

In one hand I had some files and in the other, I had my over-sized coffee mug. As I was trying to set my coffee mug into the cup holder, without spilling the contents all over myself, I spilled the contents all over myself! Grrrr!!! It was going to be one of those days for sure!

Finally when I got myself situated, I turned my car on and was surprised to see the gas gauge was all the way to full.

It was definitely one of those clouds parting, sun shining, angels singing moments!

And just like that, the whole tone for my day changed. It’s the little things that can make or break us really.

Apparently, my husband had taken my car that morning to the gym, noticed I was running low on gas and filled the tank. It wasn’t a dozen roses or a surprise trip to New York, it was even better! A full tank of gas I didn’t have to pump myself, in the rain. Oh thank you sweet Jesus!

Just like a thank you note out of the blue from a client or doughnuts on the office kitchen counter for no reason, in this fast, large and loud world,  small, thoughtful displays of affection can make all the difference.

I love seeing the FB posts where someone takes to social media to exclaim that a stranger in line bought their Starbucks for the morning. You would have thought they won the lottery they are so excited.

It happened to me once. I was so shocked I literally didn’t know what to say. But it made my day, and my White Chocolate Mocha never tasted so good.

With my head is spinning lately with politics, terrorists, Zika and GMO’s, nothing seems easy anymore.

And then, I see a young man and his family waiting for a table at Outback. An older couple walk in, there are no seats left for them in which to wait and he and his Dad immediately get up from their seats and insist the couple take them.

And just like that I feel good again.

We can’t save all the world. We won’t fix all the country’s problems. But we can choose to make our small little piece of this earth just a tad better for those we live in it with.

The payoff is greater than the gesture. If you don’t believe me, try it and see.

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A Parade Like No Other

Nothing says small town America like a good ole’ fashioned parade. And on the 4th of July many of the candidates gathered in Watertown for a parade on Main Street and through the town square. If you haven’t ventured out to Watertown for their parade, then I suggest next year you make plans to attend because theirs is like no other.

 

 

I’m not sure who came up with the idea but it seems right for the Watertown parade to consist of ….water and lots of it. The idea is to pretty much soak the participants as well as the attendees. It’s basically war as water is flying out of high powered water guns or straight from huge buckets. Those in the parade fight back with their own arsenal.

Some candidates like Team Andy Wright ventured into the wet zone, while others like Bud Brandon preferred to meet folks from the no splash zone.

Needless to say the weather was beautiful and everyone enjoyed the festivities. Some were just more wet than others!

After the parade, everyone gathered on the town square for speeches from the candidates as well as the auctioning of some delicious cakes made by many from Watertown.

Later that night as I looked at my photos of my kids and I in the parade, I thought to myself, ‘what an awesome memory’. As we had travelled down Main Street we saw people sitting on their front porches waving and smiling. Many of those same people later walked down to the town square (only minutes from their homes) to listen and learn about the candidates. And at the end of the day, many left with a freshly baked caked prepared by one of their neighbors.

The 4th of July is a day of celebrating America and it’s freedoms – I can think of no better way to have spent it than as we did.

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Renaissance Girl

Faith New pursues multiple passions with humility

By Ken Beck

Photos by Tilly Dillehay

 

She’s the girl most likely to succeed in . . . well, just fill in the blank.

When 16-year-old Faith New sets her sights on a new skill set, you’d best not block her path.

IMG_2559champThe home-schooled Mt. Juliet teenager proves a crucial member on her equestrian and competitive air-rifle teams, and, when it comes to individual pursuits, she shows her hand as a pretty fair guitarist, artist and deer hunter.

Besides the mentoring of her parents, Kevin and Christine New, Faith says she’s learned key life lessons while riding horses or sitting motionless up a tree in a deer stand.

“I think I get a lot more from horses than anything else. They’re the quiet friend, but I love the give and take,” said Faith. “They’re very peaceful animals, and my horse is very calm, and I can feed off of that. They’re a very good sounding partner.

“Every day I ride my horse, I train my horse. I want good things, positive things to come out, and you can see that through my horse.”

She specifically credits her mounts, Teddy and Bo, for teaching her patience and humility.

“If I’m angry or get overworked or overheated, I’ve learned to control it, so my horse can’t tell that he has anything over me… Horses have a mind of their own, and you sometimes can’t control them, and they’ll embarrass you in front of your trainer or other people, and you learn humility from that.”

IMG_2680champAs for the long hours spent in a deer stand, she describes that experience, saying, “Out in the middle of the woods, it’s so quiet, and we’re listening for deer coming up on you. We’re out there four or five hours. It teaches lot of patience. A lot of good outcomes come from listening.”

Born in Hermitage, Faith has lived in Mt. Juliet since she was 7. She attended Mt. Juliet Christian Academy from kindergarten through the seventh grade, but her mother decided to teach her at home in the eighth grade.

“I love homeschooling. I think it’s amazing. The first year of home school was pretty hard, but the last couple have been pretty easy,” said the junior, who recently knocked out a year’s worth of math in two weeks.

Says her mom, “I’m barely the teacher. She does everything on her own. ‘Did you do your homework?’ She knows what she needs to get done and does it.

“I always said I’d never homeschool, but one day at the end of her seventh grade, it hit me that she would be able to spread her wings and do more of what she’s interested in. The same week she came to me and said she’d been thinking about homeschooling, so she could be free to practice her sports more.

“We knew being on her own to study would free up a lot of time if she was diligent in getting the required work completed. She is doing that and more. She is free after her regular studies to study astronomy, psychology, history and do more church activities and has time to learn business by working in her father’s company, which is what she wants to do for her career. She’s a very normal average kid who does what she loves,” said Christine.

IMG_2556champFaith’s affinity for horses had her begging for her own as a tot. At 7 she started taking riding lesson once a week, then twice a week, then three times. So her parents leased a horse. When she was 9, they bought her a 9-year-old quarter horse, Teddy.

With Teddy as her saddle partner, Faith began competing in dressage and then vaulting. She described the latter as “gymnastics on the back of a horse.” Nowadays, she participates in three-day eventing which encompasses cross-country jumping, dressage and stadium jumping. She competes in hunter-jumper events as a member of CF Topflight, an all-girl, high school team based in Murfreesboro that ranks first in the state and finished ninth at the Interscholastic Equestrian Association Nationals last April.

Faith placed in the Top 10 in the Southern regionals against riders from 11 states.

“The judges judge you on how well you look and how well you control the horse from the second you get on till you get off,” she said of the event. “We ride for about 10 minutes on equitation on the flat and about four minutes on jumping the horse.

“My teammates and I like to compete against each other, but we compete as a team. We are very supportive of each other,” said Faith.

She cares for Teddy at their Youngblood Stables outside of Lebanon, while Bo, the horse she mainly rides in competition, is boarded in Murfreesboro. Faith feeds and waters Teddy twice a day.

Faith said she can read horses like humans and that Teddy “has a stoic personality. He’ll do anything, but he won’t fuss.”

Noted her mother, “She’s learned how to take care of other living beings and give them love. She’s learned how to wake up early and stay late until the job is finished… She’s learned how to be responsible for herself, a 1,300-pound animal, a trailer and truck rig. She drives herself to all of her lessons and makes sure she stays safe.

“She happens to have been blessed with owning two horses that have taken her to success over the last seven years. She’s put in blood, sweat and real tears.”

Faith also has put in long hours on the shooting range as a member of Mt. Juliet Christian Academy’s (MJCA) Shooting Saints, a competitive air-rifle team.

IMG_2699champ“I’ve put air rifle on hold going on my second month,” said Faith in early August. “Horse shows and air-rifle competition are held on weekends, so I had to choose. It’s hard to choose sometimes.”

Once the air-rifle season commences, the shooters practice pellet shooting twice a week at MJCA. During a match, each competitor will take 20 shots per position (standing, kneeling and prone) at a target 10 meters distance. A perfect score is 600. Faith’s best effort is 572.

“When we started three years ago, we were nothing. We practiced shooting in the attic of a bus barn in Mt. Juliet. We had to climb the ladder. We’re a very humble team,” she says of the squad that finished fourth in the state in last year’s Junior Olympics.

“I love being a member and seeing kids make the team. This is good for kids who may not fit in with other sports, and it makes them so happy. I enjoy seeing that,” said Faith, who sets the pace as team captain.

Shooting Saints coach Gibby Gibson said he selected her for that role “strictly because of the fact she exemplifies the attitude of a leader. If not from what she says, it’s from her actions.

“She’s a very gifted shooter, and she personifies the qualities it takes to excel in this sport. It’s just a matter of how far she wants to carry it. There are 416 colleges that offer scholarships in three-position, precision 10-meter Olympic air rifle shooting. Hopefully, that can come into play when she’s ready to go to college.”

IMG_2563Shooting an air rifle comes second nature for Faith as her father began taking her into the woods when she was 5, and she began deer hunting at the age of 7. Nine years later, she has a dozen to her credit; she shot half of them with a rifle and half with a bow.

Faith’s father finds their time in the forest provides an ideal opportunity to share his values with his daughter. Their conversations have become more mature in nature since she left childhood.

“We’ve talked about hard work, picking your friends, being a good judge of character—life lessons in general. When they’re young you have a chance to bond with them together in the same tent and have all that time together with no outside influences,” he said.

IMG_2765champHe also mentors her in the workplace as he runs his own business, Painter Ready, a national, commercial and industrial painting company, where he stresses the traits of honesty and hard work.

“I’m a big believer in that nothing comes from nothing. You’ve got to get out there and make it happen,” said Kevin, who had his daughter mopping floors at the time of the phone interview.

Asked to offer a few tips that might assist other dads in building stronger relationships with their youngsters, he shared, “It’s not always quality time but quantity time, but you need to be getting out and doing something with your children away from the TV and phone, building memories. And you need to give your child chores or jobs around the house, making them responsible.”
Faith is preparing herself to take the plunge one day and take the reins to her father’s company.

“I love business,” she said. “I think it would be amazing to carry on. Entrepreneurial is in my blood.”

Her mother added, “Honestly, she has such a big dream for herself to be an entrepreneur and a businesswoman. I cannot imagine anyone being able to tell her she can’t do it. She believes if you know how to run your life and run a business, then you have no limitations to your future unless you quit.”

As for Faith’s creative spirit, she proves to be a gifted artist and a fair guitar player. She began taking art lesson from Mt. Juliet’s Kathy Chester when she was 10.

IMG_2773“Painting was my first way of expressing myself, creating something with purpose,” said Faith, who won first place in her category that first time she entered the Wilson County Fair. “I paint pastels mostly. I like to paint landscapes, anything outside, buildings, flowers. For the past several years, I’ve kept pen and ink in my console. If I see something, I’ll jot it down.”

Purchasing her first electric guitar five years ago, she enjoys performing with a band at Heritage Christian Academy’s annual home school talent shows and also plays occasionally in the church band at First Baptist Mt. Juliet. “I enjoy playing rhythm and lead. I don’t sing but write,” she said.

Her mother, whose favorite time with her offspring is trail riding, describes her personality, saying, “She avoids drama, never gossips and is friendly, loyal and outgoing. She enjoys winning people over that may feel like they’re lost in the crowd and bringing them out of their shell. She is respectful and hardworking, and when asked to help a friend, she is loyal. No matter where she goes, she treats everybody the same way.”

Of her various pursuits, Faith shared, “Friendship is the most important. I love to see people happy. Everybody has a purpose. I really enjoy seeing other people create and find their purpose. It definitely has changed how I look at things.”

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Rock Star

Wayne Barnes has spent fifteen years growing his Lebanon rock garden into over 150 unique pieces

 

By Laurie Everett

Photos by Tilly Dillehay

 

Sometimes the “masterpiece” sticks just 6 to 12 inches out of the ground. A rock.

It’s what’s hidden underground the little rock iceberg that blows the mind.

Wayne Barnes spent hours with a pick and shovel to dig it out of the hard dirt, somewhere on a no-name farm (he won’t divulge his treasure rock-trove spot) in Smithville, Tenn.

But that little poke out of the ground turned out to be a huge limestone rock that had the exact shape of an elephant. Yes, an elephant. Even a toddler could specify the shape.

Barnes (we’ll call him his nickname, ‘Barney’, from now on) couldn’t exactly plop it onto his Lebanon front yard. It took a lot of subsequent grunts and groans, pulleys, shear fortitude, and even a sled at one point to transport this “beauty” to centerpiece his now famous “rock garden,” that has dozens of people daily do a double, and triple take, and many backups to just gaze upon the limestone wonder he’s “cultivated” for the past 12 years.

As far as “Barney,” he got that name in high school. And for anyone who knows the lovable character Barney on retro fav show Andy Griffith, this retired TRW welder has that frenetic energy.

“Well, I guess you could say I’m a little high strung and hyper,” he divulged with a laugh.

You’d have to be high strung to be a rock hunter by day.

It all started when he went to a rock show (yes, there are such).

“All the rocks were so beautiful,” he recalled. “They are limestone.”

He went to a place in Carthage and spent about twelve hours digging up a rock, and was awed at “how pretty it looked after I cleaned it up.”

He put it in his yard. Some time later a man came by his house and introduced himself after he saw what appeared to be an emerging, (admittedly, at that time a rather crude) rock garden on Barney’s well-kept Lebanon subdivision lot.

“I went out to his farm in Smith County and really went crazy,” he said. “There was a lot of rock, and a lot of them looked like animals.”

He said a friend got him into limestone rocks that take on the resemblance of animals, if you cock your head to one side and use a little imagination. With an artist’s hand and paint, they are replicas of animals.

Barney for a few seconds tried to explain that years ago Smith County was an ocean, and limestone was made with holes through them from the water… then he gave up, and just said he’s fascinated. For many years he’s searched far and wide for rock for his popular garden. His wife, Judy, helped revive it; she repainted the rocks and renewed the garden by making even more of the rocks into animals.

“I have always loved working in the yard and I love flowers and there’s nothing more pretty than a neat yard,” she said.

 

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Judy noted when they first starting dating, “I didn’t care for all the rocks he had outside, but I starting looking more at the rocks and they sort of grow on you. If you start to look at them with a little imagination you see all kinds of things.”

Like… a seal, a cow, a horse and dinosaur head, a dog and baby bear. There’s even a Woodstock (as in, Snoopy’s Woodstock).

“They just needed a new coat of paint and I loved it so much I kept painting more of the animals. It’s fun to have people stop and ask to take pictures.”

One day, a woman visiting the area from Arizona told Barney and Judy there are a lot of rock gardens in her hometown.

“She said the rocks were different here in Lebanon and she just loved it,” Judy said.

However, the showstopper on the Barnes’ property is their magnificent geode mailbox. Geodes, are, in layman’s terms, a hollow rock with sparkling crystals inside. Many a southern kids find the somewhat unspectacular mud-colored, bumpy rocks near creeks and burst them open to reveal a hidden treasure of sparklieness.

“I found a farm in Woodberry, Tenn. full of geodes,” said Barney. “Most were in the ground and it took me seven months to collect them for the mailbox stand.”

“I busted them in half, and pressured washed them with oxalic acid,” he said. “It’s a spectacular sight to see them all piled up together. People stop by all the time and gawk.”

His largest ornamental rock weighs 800 pounds. He hauled it from another undisclosed place just 15 miles from his house.

Six of his more than 150 rocks are painted. Now 67 years old, Barney has slowed down a bit. He’s got pretty flowers planted next to his rock flowers and he’s spread black lava rock around.

“Mulch just would not cut it,” he laughed.

He maintains the showstopper rock garden and dabbles in a little golf. (The clubs he traded for rock are long gone.) He’s also into scrap metal. He’s a bit upset some “kids” are stealing his sparkly geodes from his mailbox stand. It hurts a bit because he spent months down in the Woodberry, Tenn. ravine retrieving those marvels of nature.

“The largest one we found was 181 pounds,” he remembered. “It was giant, oversized, we pulled it up slowly on a dolly.”

Growing his rock garden through the years has been fun, said this quirky rock artist.

“It’s put a smile on many faces,” he said.

If you want to witness Barney’s rock garden, it’s at 1013 Shirley Drive in Lebanon.

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Pass the Salt, Please

Third Coast Salt takes a halotherapeutic approach to the spa healing experience

 

By Laurie Everett

Photos by Shari Hart

 

You might detect a bit of a Louisiana twang in her accent. Though born in that grooving hot-melt state, Shari Arnold spent her growing years in “Hotlanta” and ended up in Tennessee 11 years ago.

No, she’s not a rebel, but an intensely independent woman who has brought a unique, European respite, healing aspect to the heart of Mt. Juliet. It’s not like anything found anywhere around.

It’s Third Coast Salt.

“Well, we know there’s an East Coast and a West Coast, and now Nashville is dubbed the ‘Third Coast,’” said Shari Arnold, who is a single businesswoman, and mom to Maggie, 10, and Jack Ryman (yes, after the auditorium), age 9.

She targeted ‘Third Coast Nashville’, and went a little east to Mt. Juliet to open a happening, emerging business that beckons those who want to be in the loop with an emerging therapy that is hot in Europe and on the cusp here in the states.

2016sharihartphotographer 42Just say she’s one of the first to offer this service here.  It’s the “best, hippest coast out here! Discover the benefits of salt therapy,” Arnold enthused.

The health-conscious embrace this latest trend in pampering; it’s a ‘salt spa,’ right here in Mt. Juliet.

The technique has been used thousands of years in Europe and the Middle East. Rather than ingesting salt, spa patrons relax in rooms made of it and breathe in misty, salty vapors to clear their lungs and purify their skin.

All come out of a sessions espousing the virtues of the treatment and how much better they feel; mentally and physically.

“It’s known as halotherapy, after the Greek word halo, meaning salt,” Arnold said

“Breathing in salt can help cure a lot of modern ailments that come from pollution and stress,” said Matt Walsh, co-owner of Salt Sanctuary in Johnson City, New York. “It is especially good for helping chronic respiratory illnesses like asthma, allergies and bronchitis.”

And for people not suffering from allergies, it’s simply relaxing and meditative, said Arnold.

She said visitors can experience the ultimate in mind, body, and soul cleansing, while relaxing in comfy leather lounge chairs.

“Escape the pervasive lure of everyday technology in our relaxing salt therapy room,” she said.  “Micro particles of salt are dispersed throughout the room, creating a rejuvenating negative-ion environment. Following the 40-minute session, you’ll breathe easier and leave feeling wonderfully relaxed.”

 

Arnold’s history; southern girl in California and back

 

The journey to a holistic salt therapy business in Mt. Juliet began when Shari spent almost a decade in Los Angeles in the film and television industry.

arnold3 11-2015“I would say I was trained in my craft, a member of the Screen Actor’s Guild,” she said. “I love comedy and was cast in anything I could get a role. I survived the major strike and then was told if I didn’t get into the Reality TV aspect I had no work. That true actors didn’t have a chance. That was predicted to last ten years.”

She eventually made her way to Nashville and got a job at Gaylord Entertainment (Opryland). Her job was in their training and development department. This was 11 years ago.  She’s since had her children.

“They are my everything, my whole focal point, they are incredible people,” she said.

Soon she got a job as Lifestyles Director at Del Webb in Mt. Juliet. She loved it. She left last summer. She started with 200 residents and ended with 2,000. She created programs, built relationships, and secured the brand.

“I knew I did what I was supposed to do,” she said. “I knew my work was done, I had perfected everything. It was my time to move on.”

Because health and nutrition were her calling, Arnold went back to school with a “hunger for knowledge.”

She joined a prestigious institute and attained a degree in Integrated Nutrition. She graduated in March 2016.

“I learned a lot,” she said. “It really was for selfish reasons, I wanted to learn about better health and nutrition from a very credible school.”

She resigned her job at Del Webb to pursue further education in the health field and ended up a certified health coach from a prestigious program, besides becoming a state board aesthetician.

It was the springboard to Third Coast Salt.

 

Mid life crises?

 

“No way,” said Arnold. “Many people could say that. I simply wanted to do what I wanted to do. I wanted to heal and care for people. And be on the cusp of the health industry.”

For years, Arnold wanted to have a day spa. But she didn’t think Mt. Juliet was ready for it. So she segued to a place where residents “could heal, relax and heal themselves.”

She rented several suites in the Smoothie King (former bank building on N. Mt. Juliet Road) to offer salt therapy for young and adults. She shares the suites with like-minded businesses, such as two aestheticians, a chiropractor and professional hair stylists.

 

She explains her Salt Therapy
2016sharihartphotographer 15“We are all familiar with salt therapy, whether it’s exfoliation scrubs, smelling salts and more,” she said. “They are good for our veins, we use saline salt in our eyes, we gargle salt, spoon it in our bath, we use Epsom salt. Salt is restorative. Rejuvenating.”

At Third Coast Salt, Arnold has two halogenerators that heat pharmaceutical grade salt, then grind it and disperse into the air. She has both youth and adult rooms for therapy.

The therapy helps the lungs and people with respiratory problems such as allergies, asthma, bronchitis, COPD and other illnesses. But, she stresses it’s meditative and helpful for healthy people eager to renew and restore and meditate.

“You know how you feel when you go to the beach,” she said. “You think it’s the sand and wind, but really it’s the salt from the sea in the air.”

Her “adult” room is 400 square feet with a huge “wow” wall of salt blocks in their natural shape. They set the mood and she can change the color when asked. There are ten leather recliners and plush blankets and reflective music for meditation. All electronics are off, people can read or meditate. It’s a 40-minute session.

2016sharihartphotographer 1There’s also a youth room where children can get therapy with a parent to supervise (free of charge).

“It’s a totally different atmosphere with upbeat music and a salt box for them to play,” Arnold said.

Whitney Simpson is an advocate for the therapy.  Her son Drew was struggling with allergies. He had a long undiagnosed nut allergy.

“This therapy helped with the pressure and pain,” Simpson said.

The grand opening was Aug. 7, when Arnold had an open house and tour, plus gave attendees free smoothies.

Arnold’s dream is for salt therapy to catch on and she hopes to open multiple salt facilities. She’ll soon have a retail element with salt lamps, scrubs and more.

“I’m excited to touch the lives of people,” she said. “I want to touch the heart and soul and make people feel better. This excites me. I’m so grateful and thankful to tell the community about salt therapy.”

Cost is $30 per session, or you can purchase a monthly membership. For the youth room it’s $30 per child and a parent escorts free. Mention Wilson Living during the month of September and purchase one session at full price to get 50% savings on your second visit!

For more information, go to www.thirdcoastsalt.com

1283 North Mt. Juliet Road 615.200.6365

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there and back again

Ministry uprooted Maleah Bell’s family to Texas… then, finally, ministry brought them home

 

By Maleah Winfree Bell

During the past few weeks, I have engaged in a time of reflection. In early July, our daughter, the youngest of our three children, married the love of her life. This event left our nest officially empty. For the record, I have a long way to go before I am old—I got an early start—but healthy reflection can be a good thing at any age, right?

I was born in Lebanon at the old McFarland Hospital as my husband, Greg, had been almost two years prior. He grew up in Mount Juliet; I was raised in Lebanon. In God’s timing, this Blue Devil met and married the Golden Bear, and the journey began.

Greg and Maleah earlyAfter we married, we rented an apartment in Hermitage because few apartments existed in Wilson County. Two years later we were able to purchase our first house in Mount Juliet. Our son was born during the five years we lived there, and we eventually bought a larger house. When our son was seven years old, we were blessed with a daughter. I had worked for a publishing company for ten years, but Greg and I decided the children needed me at home. Not long after that the Lord surprised us with our youngest daughter. Greg was preparing for the future time when he would run the family business, and I was a stay-at-home mom. Life was good.

Then one day Greg announced to me he felt called to ministry, and we would need to move to Fort Worth, Texas so he could attend seminary. Neither of us had ever lived anywhere else, and all our family and friends were here. But a year later we sold most of our belongings, packed up our children—ages thirteen, five, and two—and headed west into the unknown. We became the out-of-town relatives.

Bell kids smallThe first thing we noticed about Fort Worth was the lack of tall trees. They looked more like bushes to me. I also recall the first time I saw the Trinity River. I remember commenting, “that’s not a river, that’s a stream.”  We were definitely not in Tennessee anymore.

It’s not that Fort Worth was a bad place to live. I found a job to help support us while Greg attended school, and I enjoyed working there. North Texas was a good cultural experience for our kids. They made friends from other races, and they learned to accept people who were different from them. The Mexican food and BBQ were phenomenal, but there wasn’t a country ham to be found anywhere.

I didn’t transplant well. During the time we lived in Texas, three of my family members passed away, and there was no money for me to travel home. We came home to visit the family for vacation week and Christmas, and I cried every time we left to go back to Texas.

Bell family in TexasIt is amazing how things you take for granted become important when you are away from home: U.T. football, the leaves changing, and songs such as “Rocky Top” and “Tennessee Christmas.” Not to mention I missed pulled pork and Krispy Kreme donuts. During our time in Fort Worth the first Cracker Barrel in the area opened. Of course we went to eat there during its first week. What else would good Wilson Countians do? When Greg ordered—you guessed it—country ham—his meal came with a verbal disclaimer about the salt content.

After graduation Greg accepted a pastorate in northern Alabama. It wasn’t Wilson County, but it was a lot closer than Texas! When I resigned from my job, the owner of the company asked me if there was anything he could say to convince me to stay. When I told him we were moving much closer to home and family, he said, “Well, there is no way I can compete with that.” And he was right.

Our son was a freshman in college and had a military service commitment, so he stayed in Texas. The rest of the family headed east. We enjoyed a three-year pastorate in Alabama, and I sold Pampered Chef cooking tools to supplement our income.

Proverbs 37:4 says if we delight in the Lord, he will give us the desires of our hearts. In 2003, God gave me the desire of my heart and moved us back home. Greg was pastoring in Nashville, and we wanted our girls to attend Wilson County Schools, so we resettled in our home county.

Through a sequence of events I found myself back at work at the publishing company where I had worked previously, only this time it was in an editorial job instead of sales support. I did not have an English degree, but God knows how he has gifted us, and my strengths were a match for this position. My boss was a veteran in the publishing industry, and I received a publishing education no English degree could match. A year later I was thrust into the middle of a project that would occupy the next seven years of my life—The Voice Bible translation. How many people are given an opportunity to help birth a new translation of the Bible? After The Voice Bible was published, I became an editor for Bible studies and reference books.
family-current-wedding-photosmallIn May 2015 the company restructured, and I was thrown into the world of unemployment. I needed to maintain a flexible schedule for family reasons, so I decided to become a freelance editor and writer. Challenges come with being independent. I have to step outside my comfort zone and market myself continually, and the work can be inconsistent. But I can take my parents to their doctor appointments or pick up my granddaughter from daycare if I need to. This year has been particularly difficult with the death of a beloved pet, the deaths of several relatives, and the stresses of wedding planning. Working for myself has allowed me to be available for those times.

There is no way I could write this article without acknowledging God’s hand on the journey. I recognize only He could have orchestrated the events that have brought me to this point. He knew when I would need a different balance between family and work. It was His plan for me to spend many years in the publishing major leagues so I could learn the skills that would prepare me for this season.

Maleah current headshotMy feelings about our empty nest are similar to those I felt when seven years of producing the new Bible were completed—a little empty but a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction knowing I have done my job. Our three children are now fine, young adults with their own families.

Will Greg and I always reside in Wilson County? Only God knows that. We joked with our children that we are going to retire in the Caribbean, to which one of them responded, “Who would we go to if we needed something?” But wherever God takes us, I can honestly say that my heart will always be in Wilson County because here is where I find my piece of the good life.

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The Sept-Oct 2016 Edition is out now!

Check it out in the Mt. Juliet Chronicle and Carthage Courier, as well as in racks across Lebanon and Mt. Juliet!

 

…in this issuecover 2c

 

IN EVERY ISSUE

4 NOTES FROM THE EDITOR

8 SABRINA OUT ON THE TOWN

46 ONE LAST THING

 

FEATURES

16 ROCK STAR

18 PICKETT CHAPEL

30 RENNAISSANCE GIRL

38 IN STITCHES

 

GOOD LIFE

12 PASS THE SALT, PLEASE

22 BLOWN AWAY

42 COMING HOME

44 MALEAH BELL’S GOOD LIFE

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Ch-ch-changes…

By Becky Andrews

I don’t like change. Wait. Let me rephrase that. Some change is necessary. Dirty diapers, blown lightbulbs, oil, underwear and so on. I’m talking about big change. Like the transition from high school to college, single to married, or how you felt after Glenn from The Walking Dead died but in a later episode it turns out he didn’t die (still totally blown away by this!). It’s the kind that shifts the trajectory of how you live your life.

Change, no matter how necessary, is mysterious, uncertain and uncomfortable. Who wants to be uncomfortable?

I changed my tune in 2012-the year my dad was diagnosed with mixed dementia. One week, he would be fine and have us wondering if maybe the physicians got it wrong. The next week, he would tell a room full of strangers that the night before he had to beat up Ross Perot because he caught him trying to rob a woman in the Kroger parking lot. “She offered me money because I helped, but I said, ‘that won’t be necessary.’”

Change for someone in the throes of this disease is monumental. Routine is key. For nearly four years, we managed to keep his routine, his life predictable. Then one day last fall we had to prepare him for something HUGE.

After in-depth cognitive tests ­­at an area specialty center revealed dad lacked skills to operate a car safely, the state took away his driver’s license. Three months later, my brothers, sisters and I made the tough decision to sell his car.

On Christmas Eve, I had to drive his car to the new owners. That morning, while everyone slept and the coffee brewed, I cried. I wasn’t crying because my kids didn’t want to leave cookies for Santa or because I miss my brother and sister who live on the west coast. I wasn’t crying because I can’t lose weight as easily as I could in my 20’s. I was crying because Alzheimer’s had once again managed to steal something else from my dad.

More than anything, dad doesn’t want to burden his kids. In his mind, losing his license and selling his car signaled the end of “independent Ralphie” and the beginning of “dependent Ralphie.”

We sold the car and everyone survived. Of course, our routines were shaken up a bit and it wasn’t easy. But changes are getting easier for him. Most days he can’t recall what he’s confused about or why he doesn’t drive anymore. That’s a silver lining for him.

Last week, while dad was working a crossword puzzle, I couldn’t help but to stare at him. I thought about how lucky we were that dementia had softened him. He’s always been kind but now his kindness is childlike. As much as I loved his more tender demeanor, I missed his bluntness and brutal honesty. At that moment, he looked up from his crossword and said, “You should take off that lipstick. People will think you’re a prostitute.” And that, my friends, is a silver lining for me.

Comments about this column? Email becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com

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