Art after Dark

Atkielski, Red Sky

Atkielski, Red Sky

Naples is a busy place with many residents and visitors getting acquainted with the various aspects of our area that we have come to love. Crayton Cove has been an important part of downtown Naples from its beginning. Much of the early commerce came in through the Naples City Docks, a connection with the outside world from the water. Crayton Cove has continued to transition with the times as the population has fluctuated to its present day growth.

Presently, it has come to house some of Naples’ best restaurants and is an established art destination, especially for those looking to experience some of Naples most enduring artists’ collections of work in the many galleries located here.

Random Acts of Art represents works by some wonderful Florida artisans. Byron M. Wood is one of the featured metal sculptors whose “Sail Away” sculpture can be seen gracing their 8th St. S. window. It is a spectacular piece. Stop by and see this one as well as other nice artwork she carries.

Award winning artist, Peter Garon, who recently was located on 13th Avenue South off of 3rd St. S., is now being represented by Guess-Fisher Gallery: Nestled In The Cove. He is known for his use of energetic brush strokes and a fresh use of color in his  contemporary fine art which is frequently inspired by nature. Their gallery is open daily to offer the opportunity to view and  purchase artwork by the six artists they carry, including Peter.

Garon, Altered Space

Garon, Altered Space

The Galleries of Crayton Cove offer a monthly event for the public to come and enjoy the festive Second Saturday of each month called “Art After Dark.” April 12, from 6 to 9 p.m., there is the opportunity to stroll the galleries and experience some of the newest works of art while listening to live music performed by local talent.

The participating galleries are Arsenault Gallery, Earth & Fire, Random Acts of Art, Nora Butler Designs, Phil Fisher Gallery, Art Gallery Old Naples 2 and Guess-Fisher Gallery: Nestled In The Cove. They are an Old Naples community of professional artists represented by galleries all located within a one-block walk, by the Bay. It’s where 8th St. S. & 12th Ave. S. meet, by the flagpole.

For more information visit our website at

State of the City – April 2014

State of the cityA ceremonial ribbon cutting celebrating the completion of the newly constructed City of Naples Solid Waste Recycle Transfer Facility was held on February 11th. This 12 acre site is located on the northern quadrant of the Naples Municipal Airport and once served as a landfill from the 1940s to the 1970s. In June 2011, the City signed a leasehold agreement with the Airport for the property.

For approximately 23 years, the Solid Waste Division has provided residents side yard solid waste pickup service and a residential recycle program. Over the years, the recycle program has been expanded and enhanced in order to promote participation in an effort to reduce the volume of recycle material that enters the Collier County landfill.

At the beginning of the program, recycle collection service was contracted through Waste Management which included the processing and disposal of the recycle material.

Naples Recycle Center2

Proposed City of Naples Recycle Transfer Facility

In 2007, the City assumed in-house responsibilities of the dual-stream recycle program as an alternative to the “contracted” recycle service in order to reduce operational cost. The dual-stream recycle program provided residential customers with 18-gallon containers that required the recycle material to be segregated at the curb. Upon the commencement of the City’s recycle collection operations; a temporary recycle transfer site was constructed behind the existing Solid Waste building. The segregated material was then managed and transferred to a recycle center.

In October 2010, the Solid Waste Department began a single-stream residential recycle collection program that replaced the 18-gallon recycle carry-out bins with 65-gallon recycle carts. This change in operations was intended to improve efficiencies at the curb and to promote and increase customer recycling participation with a subsequent reduction in solid waste hauled to the Collier County landfill. As anticipated, the increase in recycled material required an appropriate transfer facility for the size of the operation.

Since the start of the single-stream recycle program, the volume of recycled material has increased by approximately 17 percent from the previous amount collected using the 18-gallon carry-out bins and now exceeds 70 percent of the trash stream. The recycled material is placed in a temporary transfer facility behind the Solid Waste building, then loaded into 40 yard roll-off containers and hauled to the Lee County recycle processing facility. Due to the requirement that the recycle material be clear and dry, the temporary transfer facility was not suitable therefore; plans for a new transfer facility were designed and then constructed.

Ribbon CuttingThe Solid Waste Department will relocate operations from the old (50 Riversides Circle, Naples) Solid Waste Recycle Transfer Facility to the new facility in March, 2014. Relocation of the Solid Waste Division to the Airport provided 8.5 acres for the City’s future legacy park on the Gordon River and the new park will connect to the Gordon River Greenway which is adjacent to the Airport along the eastern edge of the River. The Greenway is anticipated to be constructed in the near future. The facility consists of a 15,000 square foot steel metal building, which includes a recycle material sorting/transfer space, administrative offices and a storage warehouse; heavy truck scales for tracking recycle materials, and a collection/staging area for hurricane debris or other projects that require offsite storage.

It was designed by Stantec Consulting Services, Inc. and constructed by Brooks & Freund, LL C. Construction began in January, 2013 and the total cost of design, permitting and construction was $3.4 million.

A special thanks to Bob Middleton, Utilities Director, City of Naples, for his contributions to this article.


Progress continues on the new legacy park on the Gordon River. The Park gala was held on March 15th and the Family Day at the Park was held on March 16th. Both events were well attended and enjoyed by all. Please visit the Naples Gordon River Park’s website at to stay updated or to get involved. If you are interested in learning how you can help with the Park, give me a call at 239.248.1550239.248.1550 or email me at

I am very excited about this opportunity to reach so many people in the community and encourage each of you to become involved with your local government as you deem appropriate. All ideas, suggestions or comments are welcome; please contact me.

Senior Center opens in Naples

Judith and Edward Anchel cutting ribbon with Commissioner Georgia Hiller and JFCS Board Chair, Richard A. Goldblatt

Judith and Edward Anchel cutting ribbon with Commissioner Georgia Hiller and JFCS Board Chair, Richard A. Goldblatt

To get 184 people to attend anything in Naples is no mean feat: but that’s how many people showed up to support and attend the grand opening and ribbon cutting of the JFCS Senior Center on March 4 at 5025 Castello Drive. Speakers included Commissioner Georgia Hiller, Jeff Lytle and Dr. Jaclynn Faffer.

The event’s purpose was to welcome the community, showcase tours and thank everyone in attendance for their support of the center. Faffer says research shows that older adults who participate in senior center programs can learn to manage and delay the onset of chronic disease and experience measurable improvements in their physical, social, emotional and mental well-being.

“Compared to their peers, participants in senior centers have higher levels of health, social interaction and life satisfaction,” said Dr. Jaclynn Faffer, president of JFCS Senior Center. She cited the recent FGCU study commissioned by the Collier County Leadership Coalition on Aging which found that of the 57,600 seniors living in the greater Naples area, 52 percent are female and more than ten thousand live alone. “We have known for quite some time that loneliness and isolation are so detrimental to a person’s well-being that those two factors can shorten one’s life.”

David Rutstein, JFCS Board member, Dr. Jaclynn Faffer, JFCS President/ CEO, Georgia Hiller, Commissioner and Marvin Lader, JFCS Board member

David Rutstein, JFCS Board member, Dr. Jaclynn Faffer, JFCS President/ CEO, Georgia Hiller, Commissioner and Marvin Lader, JFCS Board member

She hopes people will support the center so seniors countywide can benefit from the myriad of services provided there through the non-sectarian human service agency serving Collier and southern Lee Counties. The JFCS Senior Center, which officially opened on January 22, 2014 is where seniors can meet and socialize as well as share intellectual pursuits. The Center offers a weekly hot lunch, computer classes and will soon be offering card games, mah-jong and art classes. A café is available for members to enjoy that most social of activities – a shared laugh or story over coffee or tea and a light snack. Faffer says the venue is for seniors to participate in activities which will keep them engaged.

The JFCS Senior Center has two Community Partnership offices where representatives from other non-profits serving seniors will use space at no charge to provide their services under one roof. Anyone 60 years of age or older can become a member of the JFCS Senior Center. For more information, visit

Enjoying our “native” musical artists in April

Claudia Pozin Director of Development - Southwest Florida Classical South Florida - 88.7

Claudia Pozin
Director of Development – Southwest Florida
Classical South Florida – 88.7

When we think of spring – and for most of us April was the Springtime – we remember planting tulip bulbs; watching the rose bushes come to life and the trees budding. But these are all images from another climate – and here we don’t have to wait for flowers to come to life after a long winter’s nap – we enjoy them year long.

So let me throw a little musical tidbit into the images of tulip plants – I am sure that some of you remember Tiny Tim’s version of “Tiptoe through the Tulips” – well did you know that Daniel Gawthrop wrote a “Floral Prelude No. 2 – Zehspitzen durch die Tulpen” or translated – “Tiptoe Through the Tulips. “But be prepared if you chose to “Google” it – the Floral Prelude sounds nothing like Tiny Tim’s version of tiptoeing through the tulips.

Some instruments that conjure up sounds of spring will be featured in Bayshore CAPA ’s concert on April 4, 2014. The concert will be held at 7 p.m. in the Holland Salley Auditorium on the campus of Edison College in Naples. This concert will be an interesting mixture – featuring the Flute Cocktail – a group of 7 professional and amateur flutists that provide musical adventures from Baroque to more contemporary music. They will be coupled with Chrysalis Players – a group that aims to provide new programs to South Florida and educate young artists of all levels of expertise. Chrysalis has a varied group of artists and this concert will feature Mary Bowden, trumpet; Meghan Brache, flute; Alexandra Carlson, piano and Shannon Thomas, violin. Personally, I have heard both of these groups and I would not hesitate to recommend this concert, with this blending of two wonderful groups that are “native” to Naples. To learn more about this concert visit:

Another “native” group is the Naples Jazz Orchestra – during April you will be able to hear the music of Harry James on April 7. The Naples Jazz Orchestra is in its fifth season – the group was formed in the tradition of the legendary big bands to bring that music and the nostalgia that accompanies the memories of the big bands to Naples. The professional musicians of this group also organized and manage the Naples Youth Jazz Orchestra. This group of young musicians is comprised of musicians from the area high schools and performs with the professional musicians of the Naples Jazz Orchestra. Their concerts are also held in the beautiful band shell of Cambier Park at 7 p.m.

The final concert of the season for the Naples Jazz Orchestra will be held on April 14 – and for this concert you have a rare opportunity – you can help design the play list. If you have a favorite the NJO wants you to go to their website and register your request for this concert. Where else in Naples do you have the opportunity to help put together the program that you can then enjoy with your friends.

Our wonderful community not only provides you with local groups that are professionals but you have your personal concert hall  to accompany you on your way to the concert – so don’t forget to enjoy your favorite classical music station while you drive to the concert or event of your choice – 88.7 FM.

Closing out the month of April – you can hear some incredible artists that call Naples home – the Heath Recital Series will present Dickie Fleisher, harpist in concert at 3 p.m. on April 20. The Heath Recital Series is held in the Violin Shop of Naples – a very intimate setting where you get to enjoy the artists in an up close setting. At the end of the month – April 27 – head to Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church to hear two local artists that are truly extraordinary – Kristin Sonneborn, bassoon and Jodie DeSalvo, piano. This concert will be held at 4 p.m. and is free and open to the public – bring your friends and introduce them to the wonderful world of music that is ours in Naples, FL.

Until next month – enjoy all of the music in our community and on your classical station – 88.7FM.

Legacy Options for Meaning Making

Lois Bolin, Old Naples Historian

Lois Bolin, Old Naples Historian

A legacy is defined as a gift left to someone or anything handed down from the past. While many may see legacy as related to wills and trusts, let’s see legacy as what gives our life, and those connected to us, meaning. Make no mistake, a nice financial inheritance appropriately planned to ensure the intended recipients benefit more than a spend happy Congress, make life oh so nice; but what if that gift of blood, sweat and tears was accompanied by lesson of ‘conscious caring‘ and the wisdom found therein. Perhaps then this would be our greatest legacy: to help our loved ones live life on purpose filled with meaning. This is one of those times where do as I say – not as I do – is acceptable.

Often the idea of legacy conjures up thoughts of the final stage of life where we transition from life to whence we came. Even here I find it hard to write the word ‘death’; yet being reminded of death is actually a good thing, because it gives us a perspective on what’s important.

Stephen Covey, author of the 1990  best selling book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, said, “There are certain things that are fundamental to human fulfillment. The essence of these needs is captured in the phrase ‘to live, to love, to learn, to leave a legacy’.”

Our physical need for food, clothing, and shelter is followed by our social need to love, belong, and be loved. Our mental need to develop and grow, once satisfied, shifts to the need for a legacy, which fulfills our spiritual need for a sense of meaning, purpose, congruence and contribution. Personal congruence and contribution are the values we ‘seasoned’ citizens think of often even if we don’t espouse them at our favorite outing; but make no mistake, the thoughts are there because ‘legacy’ is fundamental to what it is to be human.

Legacies can be cultural or genetic. Abraham Lincoln is an example. His gene pool died off sometime ago but his legacy lives on.  While it may be hard to acknowledge our parent’s legacy, we can draw upon the following examples to help us as we think about our legacy.

Lois Bolin, Mike and Kathy Peppe

Lois Bolin, Mike and Kathy Peppe

On February 18, Mike and Kathy Peppe helped Mayor John Sorey unveil ‘The Naples Canal’ Florida Heritage Landmark at Crayton Cove, which was sponsored in the name of Dorothy S. Peppe. Mike’s love of history came from his mother  and with this marker, he passed along that love as the marker paid homage to a forgotten engineering feat some 2000 years ago and kindled the legacy of Ed Crayton, who established the ambiance of the City of Naples.

This April 9th, the Marine Corp League  of Naples and Naples Press Club will host its 10th Annual Honor the Free Press event. This notion to honor the First Amendment and the Press is the first of its kind across the nation. This event pays tribute to the legacy of those Marines, who have given their all defending American’s First Amendment rights for without a free press we have no free society and no United States of America.

Peter Thomas, whose legacy in broadcast journalism spans 50 years, is the 10th honored recipient at the Honor the Free Press event. Peter was unanimously chosen, for his exceptional character and unparalleled experiences, which landed him the distinction of being first recipient of The Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Television and Radio Association. His legacy to champion the Greatest Generation’s contribution can be found in his narration of Hallowed Grounds, the first major documentary made about American overseas military cemeteries. His legacy to connect the latest generation to the Greatest  Generation is established with the Peter Thomas History Fund held at the Holocaust Museum of SWFL.

Peter Thomas

Peter Thomas

Another legacy in the making is a right-sized company formed in 2013, Legacy Options, LL C, a new paradigm life remembrance organization. Michael Whyte and Glenn Witzneburg, who broke the mold of traditional funeral cremation companies, set forth a vision to offer all the same services as traditional funeral companies, except a chapel because they believe the place that held special meaning in someone’s life while living is the best place to hold their life remembrance services. Since it is privately owned, the cost differential is quite significant.

One thing to remember with your Legacy Options, we have no control over the length of our lives – but we do have control over its depth and breadth.

The Naples Players Presented “Distracted”

Top: Mama (Ellice McCoy) and Dr. Zavala (Aricka Shuck) in a tender moment comforting one another. Bottom: Mama (Ellice McCoy) and Dad (Byron Wigfall) argue over use of drugs for their son Jesse (Ethan Brendel).

Top: Mama (Ellice McCoy) and Dr. Zavala (Aricka Shuck) in a tender
moment comforting one another.
Bottom: Mama (Ellice McCoy) and Dad (Byron Wigfall) argue over
use of drugs for their son Jesse (Ethan Brendel).

The Naples Players will present Distracted by Lisa Loomer March 26 through April 19 in the Tobye Studio at Sugden Community Theatre.

When it is recommended that nine year-old Jesse be moved to a special education classroom, his Mama is on a mission to find out what is going on with her son. After scouring the internet for answers and consulting numerous doctors and psychiatrists the probable diagnosis is Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).

Mama doesn’t want to medicate her  son and Jesse’s Dad just thinks that boys will be boys. Distracted begs the question of how we expect today’s children to not be hyperactive in this hectic, computerized and distracting world where multi-tasking is considered a prerequisite for success.

Ethan Brendel, a Naples Players’ KidzAct veteran, will star as nine-year old Jesse with Ellice McCoy as Mama, and Byron Wigfall as Dad. Carol Clarke takes on the role of Vera, the hyper, well-meaning friend of Mama’s and Kathleen Peace performs as Sherry, one of Mama’s friendly neighbors whose troubled daughters run the gamut of pharmaceutical abuses.

Sherry’s daughter Natalie will be played by Kaitlyn Caplette. Aricka Shuck performs multiple roles as Dr. Zavala, Carolyn and the Waitress. Denise Villarreal likewise plays the multiple roles of Dr. Waller, Mrs. Holly and the Nurse, as does Stan Zawatsky as Dr. Broder, Dr. Jinks and Dr. Karnes.

Distracted will be directed by Charles Kolmann and performed Wednesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. This show contains strong, adult language and may not be suitable for children. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for students, 21 and under, and can be purchased at the box office, by calling 239.263.7990239.263.7990 with credit card information, or by visiting

Sugden Community Theatre is located at 701 5th Avenue South in downtown Naples.

Mentally Strong People

by Allen Weiss, MD, MBA, FACP, FACR President and CEO, NCH Healthcare System

by Allen Weiss, MD, MBA, FACP, FACR
President and CEO, NCH Healthcare System

Our mental health—how we consider the world and our role in it—is every bit as important as our physical health. And just as we must work to stay physically fit, so, too, must we work to keep our minds “in shape.”

Positive thinking. An optimistic outlook. These are great attributes for our well-being.

How we respond to an opportunity or a challenge is as important or even more important than the opportunity or challenge itself.

Much has been written about attitude, mental strength, things to avoid, self-pity, the benefits of optimism, and the problems with pessimism. A quote from Anthony J. D’Angelo in The College Blue Book sums up the outlook I want to share: “Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.”

Leaving the bad weather behind is what mentally strong people do to avoid pessimism. In a recent Forbes Magazine essay, psychotherapist Amy Morin takes note of 13 characteristics of mentally strong people.

1. Strong folks don’t waste time feeling sorry for themselves. We all have been dealt a “bad hand” at some point in our lives. Those who do well take responsibility for actions and outcomes, move on, and start the next chapter. They also learn not to do the same thing again.

2. People in control of themselves don’t allow others to demean or talk down to them. Folks in control are comfortable working with others, but don’t allow themselves or others around them to be abused. Life is not a single sum gain where one person’s loss is another’s gain. Adding to the total is what happens when folks help each other thrive.

Mentally Strong People3. Change is here to stay, so don’t resist. Resisting just adds friction and cost. Having a healthy fear of the unknown if okay,  as long as the fear is not paralyzing but rather helps create an “edge” to improve performance.

4. There is much in modern society we can’t control, so don’t waste time and energy trying to change these situations. Getting a flat tire due to a nail in the road, having an airline delay, bad weather—all these things happen. Concentrate on important things that are controllable and you will be far better off.

5. Being fair and kind as a baseline to everyone is so much better for mental peace of mind, versus creating enemies or trying to please everyone. It’s true that being effective personally and professionally will mean some colleagues are not “on board” and therefore upset. No one can please everyone and still make significant progress.

6. Don’t be afraid to take risks. You don’t have to be a professional or an expert to start a project. After all, professionals built the Titanic; amateurs built the ark. Risk taking is part of life. “Nothing ventured, nothing gained,” goes the old saying goes. That remains true and relevant today.

7. Avoid dwelling on the past. Rather, anticipate, plan, and enjoy the future. The past, whether glorious or not, is still the past. Of course having a successful background is an asset but you can’t rest on your laurels. Today and tomorrow trump the past.

8. Learn from mistakes so you don’t repeat them over and over. Being self-reflective in an accurate and productive way is one of the greatest strengths of successful executives and entrepreneurs. Having colleagues who provide timely, accurate, insightful feedback avoids the “Emperor’s New Clothes” syndrome. Being surrounded by adoring “yes” people might feel good for a while, but it will ultimately lead to disaster.

9. Jealousy is not a flattering trait. Sincerely appreciating other people’s success is both a positive characteristic and good for everyone. Positive feedback is rare in today’s society; taking genuine pleasure from other’s success will lead to a virtuous cycle of improvement. I have written before in these pages about taking pleasure from other’s pain. The term for this in German is “Schadenfreude,” which means being destructive for all concerned.

10. Life is not always easy, so perseverance matters. Everyone experiences failures, both large and small. Picking oneself up and moving forward is a core characteristic of successful people. Diligence in the face of adversity separates the winners from the losers.

11. Being alone, having time to contemplate, innovate, read, study, learn—are all critical activities which should be nurtured and cherished. Too often we are interrupted by “urgent but unimportant” activities which interfere with “important nonurgent” productive behaviors, according to author Stephen Covey. Staying focused is an attribute of productive people.

12. If you feel the world owes you a living, you are in big trouble. We all need to produce and be viewed as contributors. In our increasingly global competitive market, everyone will be increasingly responsible for his or her own welfare. Understanding this concept about individual productivity is key for success at any level.

13. Life is a long-term process not a short-term plan. We all need to get past the “nanosecond culture” of immediate gratification. Delaying gratification and compounding positive results are the hallmarks of people and institutions who are successful over decades and centuries.

This catalog provides as good a roadmap as any to ensure positive mental strength.

Let me close by going back to a famous 1910 speech, “Citizenship in a Republic,” by President Teddy Roosevelt. The speech emphasized his belief that the success of a republic rested not on the brilliance of its citizens, but on disciplined work and character, and the quality of its people.

One notable passage in his speech is referred to as “The Man in the Arena.” Roosevelt says:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who  comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Diligence, perseverance, compassion, and participation— that’s how mentally strong people become successful.

How are your discs?

by Paula Allia PT, DHSc, MTC, OCS

by Paula Allia

In the United States, 80 percent of the population will experience low back pain sometime in their lifetime. One of the most common areas of repetitive trauma that leads to pain and dysfunction is the intervertebral disc.

There are 33 vertebral bones in the total spine with a total of 25 moving segments. Situated between each vertebra is the intervertebral disc. The integral effort of the joints and discs with the support of muscles, joint capsules and ligaments work together to allow for mobility but to limit with stability. This effort allows each of us to functionally use our spines throughout the day.

The vertebrae provide a structural framework and depending upon the angle, are afflicted with compressive loads. Body weight is transmitted across this framework. It is now thought that a healthy disc can withstand more pressure than the vertebra. When healthy, the bone actually acts as a shock absorber, the disc acts more like a ball bearing as it tries to equally distribute the stresses that are applied to it over the whole segment.

The intervertebral disc has two components. First is the annulus. It is comprised of layers of collagen tissue that is very resilient. The healthy annulus can deform somewhat to permit movements yet check excessive motions by attaching firmly to the vertebrae above and below. It acts to stabilize the spine and check excessive motions. This annulus is a stabilizer and contains the nucleus, the inner portion of the disc. The healthy nucleus can deform as does not change its amount of fluid volume. It is contained by the annulus and its ball bearing properties help to disperse any loads applied to the spine.

The annular fibers are challenged with rotational motions. If excessive strains are applied to this portion of the disc, small annular tears can occur. Cumulatively, these tears become weakness and now the job of the annulus containing the nucleus can become compromised. Naturally, the body innately moves from a high-pressure zone lower pressure (the path of least resistance). If the spine continues to be challenged, the ball bearing capacity of the nucleus deforming within the contained annulus is limiting and the nucleus can move towards the weaker annular tissue. The load bearing and stability of the segment is thus limiting. The nucleus can actually bulge out and herniate. Spine

Approximately 52 percent of asymptomatic people already have at least one bulging disc. Over time repetitive poor body mechanics, poor form in sports, excessive twisting at a specific spinal may eventually lead to localized pain, muscle guarding, or neurological symptoms such as leg pain, numbness and tingling and in the worse case scenario, weakness occurs.

When a person gets back pain there are a lot of assumptions made of what may be causing the pain yet the actual initial injury could have been years prior. Now many people start telling you that they have back trouble and they tell you what they do to help themselves (if they do anything). The problem is no two back injuries are identical and you most certainly do not want to do things that can hurt you further and cause progression of a disc injury.

So what should you do to protect your back if you do have disc issues? First, never force motion in the spine. If there is pain, STOP . If there is a tear in the annulus, it is usually posterior or posterior lateral so use caution. Initially, stretching is not good for this problem and can cause further problems. First, think of this sick disc like a cut: You do not stretch a cut; allow the cut to stabilize to allow for healing. Discs do not heal well so they depend on some scarring to help to stabilize the area. If there are leg symptoms the goal is to get rid of the leg pain by gentle movements and positioning. Sometimes small backward bending motions  that do NOT cause any pain can be done but not forced. If there are minimal disc issues, this may help the disc and help to neutralize it in attempts to calm the symptoms. If this motion causes increased symptoms of any kind, stop. Some experts say that an acute disc injury should not be opened or stretched for at least two weeks. This is a good rule to follow for precaution but most people once feeling better do not have the patience to wait.Spinal Disk

Repetitive motions, rotations on a sick disc, and poor mechanics will certainly lead to further injury of the disc. The rule of thumb is to control motions, avoid overstretching a disc, learn about body mechanics and adapt your physical activities as needed to avoid excessive stresses to the discs and learn about the basics of proper postures (sitting, lying, lifting).

Core strengthening with proper stabilization and positioning is key. Remember that no two backs are alike so you need specific strengthening and stretching designed specifically for you! Sweat the small stuff when it comes to your back. You will find that you can ontinue to participate in most activities if you make your back last. EVERYBODY can improve. Start now to give your bones and discs the proper care to live a more productive life everyday. There is always something that you can do to help yourself. Don’t let yourself be a victim.

For further information please call Paula at Fitness Together in downtown Naples 239.263.9348239.263.9348.

Get It Straight

by Erick Carter

by Erick Carter

Of course we love it when you come into the salon to have your hair blown straight. With the right tools, effort, and a few tips maybe you can GET IT STRAIGHT yourself.

1) Before you get in the shower give yourself an oil treatment. Put a blob of oil in your hair and comb through roots to ends. Allow about 10 mins or so to let the oil soak in, just use on ends if your hair is fine. Then shampoo and condition as normal.

2) Prep your damp hair from roots to ends with your styling product. Then spray your hair with a heat protected silicone spray.

3) Use a vented paddle brush and PULL your hair as straight as you can.Straight hair

4) Once your hair is about 80-90% dry, now grab a round brush, a mix of nylon and boar bristles will help to achieve a smoother look. The goal here is not to get a round look but to smooth the hair. The more you smooth it here the less work with a flat iron.

5) Flat iron to give a finish and polished look. I like to use a heat resident glove to protect my working hand. Always adjust the iron to the fabric of your hair. A flat iron spray is always a good idea to help with results and for protection.

6) Finish with an aerosol shine spray, spraying in the direction of the hair. My favorite products for above use: Oil: DeepShine Oil by Rusk aerosol shine spray: Thermal shine spray by Rusk Flat iron spray: Thermal flat iron spray by Rusk.


White Kitchens are All the Rage

Clay Cox

Clay Cox

The predominant color choice for kitchens this year by far  is white. Just take a look at the kitchen magazine covers. White kitchens are typically matched with white and grey countertops that are almost always Carrera marble. Why is white cabinetry taking the country by storm? I believe it has to do with our new outlook on kitchens. We want our kitchens to be light and fresh, functional and streamlined with clean lines. White cabinetry allows a sophisticated look or casual style that can be blended easily with a splash of color.

In addition the door style of choice today is our old favorite the “Shaker” door. However not the Shaker you are used to. The style has been rejuvenated with many variations that most definitely bring it into the second decade of the 21st century. The frame work on the door can be wider which lends itself to the larger kitchens that we all seem to want.

The door itself can have small touches of applied moldings to give it a warmer feel. Remember the word “transitional”? This has been used to describe the latest over-all look that folks are buying into these days. And white kitchens with a variation of the shaker door fits into this perfectly.Kitchen

Now let’s discuss those Carrera marble tops I spoke of earlier. Most folks want to know how marble holds up in a kitchen. The truth is it takes conscientious care. Keep this work space tidy, use trivets and chopping blocks, which should be used on all countertop surfaces, than you will not have a problem. However it will stain and scratch easily if abused.

Stop by one of our Kitchens by Clay showrooms in town and see what I am talking about. We have the displays for today’s consumer. We keep them up to date, fresh and clean. Call and make an appointment if you want to spend some time with one of our designers and you will not be disappointed.

Please E-mail Clay with your questions or comments at Be sure to sign up for our e-newsletter at!