Friday, October 9, 2009

It’s All about Hope

By Millicent K. Brody

The Center For Hope Hospice & Palliative Care, a non-profit organization, was founded in the late 1970's by the late Peggy Coloney, R.N., and the late Father Charles Hudson, M.A.

I first met Father Hudson when he was administering to a dear friend. A most patient, kind, gentleman, he was full of love and compassion as we all sat together chatting in the confines of my friend’s small living room, surrounded by his hospital bed, special lift, and all of his medical paraphernalia. In spite of how truly ill my friend was, Father Hudson brought sunshine, life, and hope into the room. His beloved presence and energy will never be forgotten.

The term hospice dates back to medieval times, when it referred to a place for weary or ill travelers. Today, hospice care is about increasing an individual’s quality of life by providing physical, emotional, and spiritual support to patients and their families as they face the challenges associated with a life-limiting illness.
Hospice is about an individual's right to choose how they wish to be cared for in the final phase of their life. Hospice believes that all persons have the right to live in dignity and free from pain until the natural event of death occurs.

“Since its inception, the growth of our organization has been remarkable,” says Diane Coloney, Director of Volunteer Services. “More than 500 women will be attending our Annual Fashion Show this Sunday, October 11 at 11 a.m. at L’Affaire, in Mountainside.”

The Center For Hope Hospice & Palliative Care attributes this growth to the commitment of its staff, the support of the community, and the faith of referring physicians.

“We've added ‘Palliative Care’ to our name as an expansion of the mission of hospice," Coloney adds. "We strive to address the needs of individuals outside of the six-month life expectancy parameter. This change represents the willingness of Center For Hope Hospice & Palliative Care to share its expertise in the area of palliative care for the terminally ill and offer consultative services. Ours is an interdisciplinary approach to symptom management for patients with a debilitating chronic disease.

The Center For Hope & Palliative Care Home Care program offers services to individuals who are homebound, seriously ill, or in need of the assistance of visiting health professionals.

Even though home care patients are usually in a recovery phase and have a good prognosis, they may be confronting very complex issues. These issues can include coping with the loss of independence due to physical limitations, the fear of creating stress for other family members, and even the inevitability of their own mortality. These are difficult concerns to express, yet part of healing involves recognizing and responding to the emotional as well as the physical effects of an illness.

For more information on the Center For Hope services or to volunteer your services, please contact Diane Coloney at the Center for Hope Hospice,1900 Raritan Road, Scotch Plains. Call: 908.889.7780.

Annual Fashion Show
Sunday, October 11, 2009
11:00 a.m.
1099 U,S . Highway 22
Mountainside, NJ
Cost: $60
Grand Raffle Prizes
1st: Vacation for 2 (valued at $3500)
2nd: Necklace (valued at $2200)
3rd: $500 Shop Rite Certificate
Raffle tickets: $1 each

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Don’t Let the Fit Hit the Fan…

Easy Ways to Enjoy a Weekend without Undoing Your Work-Week Workouts

By Molly McGrath

The work-week is crazy, at times leaving little room for fun. Then the weekend arrives and friends begin to call up to make plans… meet for coffee? Pastries included. Movie date? Popcorn and Milk Duds please. Want to check out that new restaurant? I hear the dessert menu’s great.

Why is it that sometimes all there is to do is eat? Not only that, but all there is to do is sit still and eat. I sit at a desk all week and squeeze exercise classes into the spare hours between work and sleep, then my beloved weekend comes along with its promises of fun and lures me into a haven of delicious bad decisions.

It can be very hard to find a balance between a healthy lifestyle and a fun one. But, once again, our beautiful state provides. Here are some great ideas to fill your free time with fitness… and not even notice it.

Dance Parties!

Friday nights try “Swinging with Simone’s Jersey Bounce!” in Montclair. Learn the dances and then swing the night away! For just $15 you get a complimentary lesson followed by an evening of fun from 8:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. For more information visit

Or, hit the Parkway and head for Cape May for Vintage Dance Weekend October 10 & 11. Learn the traditional dances of the 19th century and then put your newfound expertise to good use at a costumed Vintage Ball on Saturday night or a Tea Dance Sunday afternoon! For ticketing packages and additional information visit

Sight-Seeing Calorie Burn

Take on the New Jersey Lighthouse Challenge the weekend of October 17 & 18. Visit 13 historic lighthouses/sites throughout the state. Each participating site will have its own souvenir token to commemorate the visit. You don’t have to enter the lighthouse to meet the challenge… but you should! That’s a lot of steps! Your glutes will thank you. For more information visit

Walk It Out

The easiest exercise of all—just get moving. On Saturday, October 10, enjoy a 90 minute Historic Hike through from the Morris County Courthouse uphill to Fort Nonsense. The tour beings at 10 a.m.

Or, set your own pace by wandering through one of the many street fairs going on around the state. Stroll amongst the vendors… and maybe opt to walk briskly past the funnel cake stand. Visit for to find a fair near you.

When the weekend rolls around and you finally find yourself with some free time be sure to spend it wisely. Make memories, spend time with friends, learn something, see something new, spend your weekends feeling great in the Garden State.

For more great ideas to fill your free time visit the NJL event calendar.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Quest for the Best Bloody Mary

By Maureen C. Petrosky

This past Sunday morning, New Jersey residents anywhere near the banks of the Delaware were treated to an eerie awakening: a heavy white fog so thick you couldn’t see five feet in front of you. The cobwebs glistening in the morning dew and an undeniable chill in the air let us know Fall is surely setting in. It’s no surprise that Halloween celebrations have always been so big here in the northeast. Our October setting is ideal for all things spooky. It’s only appropriate we talk about spirits this week. It’s also apropos that a drink with the word bloody in it has emerged as this season’s must sip.

For years, it’s been part of my lifework to discover all sorts of taste bud euphoria. While some experiences are easy to find, others continue to elude me, one in particular being my relentless pursuit of the perfect Tiramisu. When it’s made from scratch, achieving perfection can easily become reality. However, I have yet to savor one served in a restaurant that lives up to my expectations. Recently, I have abandoned this mission and set out on a new culinary adventure: the quest for the best Bloody Mary.

Like the Tiramisu, it is composed of very few ingredients yet there seem to be endless renditions--from spicy to salty, with an array of garnishes from the mere lemon wedge to those topped with what you might call a salad. I must admit, I like to eat mine as much as sip it. A skewer of sliced red pepper, a crisp cucumber, half a pickle, a huge green olive, a whole celery stalk, a salty rim - and that wedge of lemon--YUM! It’s got to be spicy, but not so much so that it ruins my mouth for brunch. As we always say, start with good ingredients and you’ll end up with good results. So Jersey, show us what you’ve got. We want to know where you go for the best Bloody. Until then, here’s to a bloody good day!

A Winner: Whiskey Willy’s Original Bloody Mary Mix- This is an excellent start to a great Bloody Mary. It’s tangy, got that horseradish bite, and works wonders when paired with a premium vodka.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Gifts from the Ancestors Offers a Rare Glimpse of Ancient Arctic Life

By Brianne Harrison

Princeton University has, among other things, an excellent art museum that is (rightly) celebrated for its extensive collection and illuminating exhibitions. With their most current exhibition, Gifts from the Ancestors: Ancient Ivories of Bering Strait, they may have outdone themselves. The massive collection of hundreds of ancient ivories carved from walrus tusks—mostly dating from 100 AD to about 1200 AD, are not only exquisite works of art; like most anthropological finds, they provide information about how ancient people of the Bering Strait region lived, hunted, amused themselves, and died, and what was important to them. In addition to showing the beautiful pieces, the exhibition examines their uses and the information they provide to give a more complete picture of life in an ancient subsistence society in the frozen north.

One might think that people who had to struggle day to day just to bring home enough food to feed their families wouldn’t be too concerned with making their everyday objects beautiful. This exhibition definitely proves that assumption wrong. The most commonplace objects—handles, harpoon heads and shafts, needle cases, combs, spoons, and gut scrapers—are intricately carved in such a way that you see something different depending on what angle you view the object from. One harpoon counterweight had the face of a predator carved into it when viewed one way, but if you turned it upside down, you could see a tiny human face carved in as well. Viewing many of these objects is like pulling out an ancient Magic Eye book.

And why should these ancient hunters have taken such care with commonplace items? The exhibition posits that including images of the prey in their weaponry may have been the hunters’ way of bringing luck to the hunt and honoring the animal that would provide sustenance for themselves and their families. But other objects’ meanings are more opaque than that—there are wonderful tiny gaming pieces in the shape of birds, as well as human figures, and small carvings of various animals that have no obvious use. Were these toys? Objects of worship? It’s difficult to say, but they’re still enjoyable to look at.

Gifts from the Ancestors was a long time coming—many of the pieces were gifted to the museum many years ago by Lloyd E. Cotsen, a member of the class of 1950. It took nearly a decade to bring the exhibition to light, but I think most visitors will agree it was well worth the wait.

Bonus: The Arts Council of Princeton, which is a short, pleasant walk from the University Art Museum, is presenting Dry Ice: Alaska Native Artists and the Landscape as a companion exhibition/counterpoint to Gifts from the Ancestors. Dry Ice will be on view through November 21.
102 Witherspoon St., Princeton,

Gifts from the Ancestors runs through January 10, 2010. For more information, visit

Monday, October 5, 2009

Autumn Culinaire

By Pat Tanner

I have tremendous respect for the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization, so was pleased when the Mercer County chapter instituted an annual food and wine fundraising gala a few years back. This year’s Autumn Culinaire, as it is called, takes place October 15 at Greenacres Country Club in Lawrenceville.

While this event constitutes a tasty way to give to a good cause, it’s also a way to scope out new and interesting eateries. Among the outstanding newcomers are New Brunswick’s Due Mari and Princeton’s elements. (You can read my reviews of both elements and Due Mari) Plus, there are some familiar names with new endeavors. Bobby Trigg of the respected Ferry House recently opened BT-Bistro on Route 1 in West Windsor, and while Lawrenceville’s Acacia restaurant has been around for decades, even dedicated diners may not be aware that it got new owners and a new persona two years ago. They, Kelly Edelstein and Joe Immordino, plan to serve a crabcake surf-and-turf appetizer and lemon curd tarts.

The evening’s additional pleasures include samplings of about 150 wines and beers, live music, and a silent auction that features everything from a Tiffany watch to a dozen new cookbooks from the shelves of yours truly. Host chef Daniel Daniluk of Greenacres will be dishing up braised pork agrodolce with white polenta and, for a sweet treat, wild berry mango parfait. Other participants include: Anton’s at the Swan, Archives, Blue Bottle CafĂ©, Blue Point Grill, Brothers Moon, Lindt Chocolate, the Nassau Club, On the Bone, Ota-Ya, Parallel 40, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Silver Decoy Winery, Starbucks, Triumph Brewing, and Witherspoon Grill. Deserving of a special shout-out is Salt Creek Grille in Princeton, which plans to serve duck at the gala, but which is also donating $1 from every order of its Herb Roasted Chicken dish to BBBS-Mercer County throughout 2009.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Autumn Culinaire will take place on Thursday, October 15 from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Greenacres Country Club, 2170 Lawrenceville Road, Lawrenceville. Tickets are $85 in advance, $95 at the door. For tickets and information visit or phone 609.656.1000.