• Featured

    Kindness Matters: House of Bread

    To break bread is probably one of the oldest human traditions that continues to ignite the spirit of sharing. In the Christian faith, it is symbolic of the Eucharist, or Holy Communion. To make bread is the activity that unites women who are participating in job training sessions offered by the House of Bread, a new non-profit in Roanoke. The House of Bread was created in January 2017 to help formerly incarcerated women gain skills to strengthen their confidence and hope. Over the course of a six-week session, women learn new skills through hands on training in the Local Environmental Agricultural Project Kitchen (LEAP kitchen located in the West End)…

  • Featured

    Young Female Writers Club

    The Lyrical Side of Writing Written by K.L. Kranes The first time I read the name “Odessa Hott” I think it sounds like the name of a feisty, no nonsense protagonist in a YA detective novel. When I tell the real Odessa Hott this she laughs. You can tell a lot about a person by a laugh. Odessa’s is quick and soft, but sonorous. It’s my first clue Odessa’s much more than a 16-year-old girl from Mechanicsville, VA. As Odessa and I continue to talk, I quickly realize I’m right. Odessa plays the Taiko (Japanese drums) and reels off opinions on Emily Dickinson with ease. When she discusses the writing…

  • Bella Outdoors,  Eats+Sips

    Warm Up to Veggie-Packed Soup

    When the weather outside is frightful, we could all use a cozy soup for supper. A steaming bowl of Rustic Vegetable-Beet Soup provides instant comfort. The ease and convenience of Aunt Nellie’s pickled beets can’t be “beet”- no need to spend time peeling or pickling. This colorful mix of antioxidant-rich beets, sweet potato, and carrots joins tender zucchini to create a soup that tastes like it simmered all afternoon; but in fact, comes together in under an hour. The sweet-tangy beets add an unexpected but welcome layer of flavor to this hearty soup. For the finishing touch, a garnish of vibrant green, lemony gremolata brightens the soup’s flavor. Garlic, lemon…

  • Mind•Body•Soul

    Managing Your Blood Pressure

    Managing blood pressure can be difficult, especially during the holidays and winter months. A change in routine, family visits, traveling, illness, holiday menus and financial concerns can all conspire to derail your best efforts at keeping chronic conditions, like high blood pressure, under control. If you are one of the millions of American adults with high blood pressure, it is vital to keep your blood pressure stable. Drastic changes can put you at risk for heart attack or stroke. Here are three ways to control your blood pressure throughout the holiday season from the American Heart Association: Be wary of decongestants Decongestants are in many over-the-counter cold and flu medications,…