Tag Archives: february

Woven for Mutts Helps Local Dogs

Ariel Lev has always loved dogs. She and her husband were able to rescue two, but they found that they were not in a place to have more than that at the same time. Still, like many animal lovers, she knew she wanted to do more.

Photo Jan 04, 12 33 53 PM“Donating money was one thing, but I couldn’t always do as much as I wanted to,” Ariel explains. “Volunteering and fostering are dangerous for me because I know that would mean a third dog for us, and we are unable to do that right now. Walking away from those dogs in need would be heartbreaking.”

With all of these things resting in the back of her mind, Ariel sat down last summer to watch a friend weave. Her friend let her try it out, and shortly thereafter, Ariel bought her first loom.

Ariel began posting pictures of her creations on social media and received an onslaught of support from her friends. The interest generated a new set of questions.

Photo Jan 04, 12 32 36 PM“I have a full-time job, and I didn’t want to commit myself to making a profit or selling my weavings to friends,” she says. “What would I charge them? What would I do with the money? At that point, I realized that I could sell them, but donate the money to senior dogs in shelters. Donating the money keeps the acting fun and fulfilling for me.”

As many of us already know, a lot of shelter dogs are seniors. People decide they can’t keep them, they move, or sometimes, unfortunately, owners die and the pets don’t have anywhere to go. Puppies are quickly adopted out of shelters because they are an easy sell. Potential adoptive families often avoid the dogs who already have someone else’s habits or illnesses. They forget that the dogs who are not always the most appealing also need and deserve a loving, safe, and warm environment.

“Senior dogs have lived their entire lives with a human and, all of a sudden, find themselves in a concrete cell wondering what happened,” Ariel adds. “As our dogs have gotten older, I’ve fallen more in love with their greying faces. When I see other little grey faces in shelters, it breaks my heart.”

Photo Jan 04, 12 31 46 PMLast month, Ariel hit her first thousand dollar mark and donated the money to Angels of Assisi. She has committed to donating every one thousand dollars she makes from her creations to a different shelter, and the next beneficiary will be Franklin County Humane Society Planned Pethood. Currently, she chooses shelters out of her interest in them. However, if the business continues to grow, she will be accepting nominations.

Ariel will also begin teaching weaving to the public this month in a series of classes at the Taubman Museum of Art on February 5, 12, and 19. Visit www.taubmanmuseum.org for more information on the class, and check out Ariel’s Etsy shop at www.etsy.com/woven4mutts.

Love Your Healthy Smile!

By now you have likely heard of charcoal toothbrushes and natural toothpaste. There are a lot of arguments out there on why natural toothpaste is better for you. We decided to give it a try for ourselves and signed up for Boka, a subscription service that sells products promoting better oral health including toothbrushes, toothpaste, and dental floss.
Their minty toothpaste is made from natural ingredients with essential oils like peppermint and mint. It contains no sodium laurel sulfate, fluoride, triclosan, artificial flavors or parabens. Full disclosure: talk to your dentist about any concerns you have regarding fluoride before eliminating it from your oral care products.
bokaThe bristles on their classic toothbrushes are made with Binchotan activated charcoal that naturally reduces odor-causing bacteria while providing a soft, gentle cleaning. They also offer toothbrushes for kids and electric heads that are compatible with most Sonicare electric brushes.
We LOVE their floss. It is wrapped in natural beeswax and glides smoothly, expanding between teeth to give you a super-clean mouth and gums. Like their other products, it is all natural—Teflon-free and petroleum-free.
Your subscription will be billed and delivered every three months (which is the time recommended for you to change toothbrushes anyway). You can choose to order the toothbrush on its own or with dental floss and toothpaste.
And the best part? Boka shares the love. For every Boka brush purchased, the company donates a toothbrush to their nonprofit partner, Surge. Surge helps bring life-sustaining clean water to those in need across the globe. They are also working together to provide oral health education to schools around the world.
Visit www.loveyourboka.com for more information on their products and to sign up for your subscription. You can cancel at anytime, but we are excited to keep ours going—our teeth have never felt and looked so amazing!

Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

Flowers and chocolate are nice, but let’s be honest–it isn’t that hard to go to the grocery store, grab those items, and make it look like you actually thought about Valentine’s Day for more than three seconds on the way home.
Surprise your Valentine with unique and creative gifts that appeal to their personality this year–it only takes a few extra seconds to find something beautiful, thoughtful, and perfect for the one you love. Here area  few of our favorite ideas:

VDay_Paramour2Paramour Valentine’s Day Archipelago candles: These candles are elegant, and they smell wonderful also. This is a gift that your Valentine can appreciate for quite some time, and the glass containers make wonderful keepsakes once the candle is gone!

Bubblecake Cupcakes: Again, candy is great… but we love cupcakes! This option is perfect for any sweet-loving male or female in your life. Plus, they are having a really great deal this weekend. Head over to their Facebook page for more information!

word-notebooks-declan-3pack-coverWord. Notebooks: We featured these in our February issue, but we have to mention them here as well! There are many different styles of these notebooks available, making them the perfect gift regardless of gender. Plan an adventure for your Valentine, but don’t forget to give them the notebook first–that way they can record it and remember it forever!

2016 Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure Registration: The Virginia Blue Ridge Affiliate of Susan G. Komen is hosting their Race for the Cure on April 9 this year. Surprise your sweetheart by registering them and yourself to participate! Take advantage of their sweetheart deal, which offers the lowest race registration prices available, before it ends on Monday, February 15. Click here for details!

Happy Valentine’s Day from your Bella girls! We hope you have a great weekend!

 

Giving Back: Love Your Melon

Love Your Melon was founded in October 2012, with the simple idea of putting a hat on every child battling cancer in America. Two college sophomores, Zach and Brian, set out to fulfill their mission of improving the lives of these children, traveling from coast to coast with hats in hand.
Not only does Love Your Melon provide hats for patients, they also sell them (along with other items) to the public. Through funding from product sales, they can continue to give hats to children newly diagnosed each year in addition to the 45,000 to which they have already committed.
Also, fifty percent of the net proceeds from their sales go to the Pinky Swear Foundation (providing immediate support for children battling cancer) and CureSearch for Children’s Cancer (to fund research initiatives to beat childhood cancer completely).
In order to reach their goals, Love Your Melon has expanded significantly in the last few years. They now include a network of college students across the nation called Love Your Melon Ambassadors. To date, more than 2,500 college students at over 225 different schools have signed on to sell and donate hats. Locally, Kinzie Trompak began a chapter at Virginia Tech in the spring of 2015.
IMG_8888For Kinzie, the desire to help children battle this disease went beyond sending a check to an organization. It was about getting involved personally and creating a bond when people needed it the most.
“It is really rewarding to be able to go and do donation events at hospitals,” she explains. “It gives you the opportunity to put a face to the cause.”
Kinzie’s initiative to establish a chapter at Virginia Tech was the first big step to help children in our area battling cancer. However, it is important that we get behind her and show that we, as a community, are part of their team.
“Readers can help by purchasing anything on the Love Your Melon website and crediting the Virginia Tech campus,” she says. “We are currently the only campus in Central and Southwest Virginia that participates in the Love Your Melon Ambassadors program.”
Visit www.loveyourmelon.com to check out their selection of beanies, caps, shirts, and accessories. Their beanies are perfect for the remainder of winter, and their shirts will make a great addition to your summer wardrobe so you can love your melon throughout the year!

Bella Loves You!

Did you miss our Valentine’s Day recommendations? That’s ok, because these products are still a great way to spoil yourself during these harsh winter days. Check out some of our favorite new things, and pick up the February issue of Bella while you still can!

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 A Fitting Kit from Commodity Goods: First, you order a kit. From that kit you choose your favorite scent and order a bottle. Warning: Choosing one favorite is hard!

 

 

 

 

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Zuny Classic Series Elephant Pink Animal Bookend:
Ok, so we are just a little obsessed with how cute this is–and there are tons of animals to choose from!

 

 

 

 

 

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Broccoli, Love & Dark Chocolate by Liz Pearson:
The title says it all. Get healthy and ENJOY it! This book is full of advice and great recipes that will change your life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

bellamarchprodAnd, a special sneak peek to our favorite March things:
Subversive Cross Stitch: 50 F*cking Clever Designs for your Sassy Side by Julie Jackson– released February 17! Copies available now!

P.S. Stay tuned to our Facebook page during the next two weeks for chances to win some of these awesome finds!

14 Days of Love: WIN Skincare Services from Allura!

14 Days of Love: Day FOURTEEN!!!

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The winter weather isn’t good for our delicate skin. So to help with that the fabulous team at Allura in Salem is giving away a Microdermabrasion service AND an UltraSonic Facial to one lucky reader (a $160 value!).  Who couldn’t use this?!?!

Visit our Facebook page for details on how to win!

14 Days of Love: $85 Gift Card from Salon Del Sol!

14 Days of Love: DAY Thirteen!!

1292876787_CCSOne lucky winner will get to pamper themselves or a loved one with this $85 gift card from Salon Del Sol! You can use this card towards their Elemental Massage– a personalized experience based upon the Aveda Elemental Nature philosophy and your favorite Aveda aromas. This full-body therapeutic massage will increase circulation, help eliminate toxins, and reduce stress.

Visit our Facebook page for details on how to enter!

1 Billion Rising: Domestic Violence Awareness

1 Billion Rising Picture 1On this Saturday, February 14, there will be an exciting spectacle at Valley View Mall. The non-profit 1 Billion Rising, the Family Violence Coordinating Council, and the Rescue Mission will be holding a flash mob to raise awareness for and help bring an end to violence against women. Local groups have been practicing throughout this month to prepare for the flash mob. They will all be wearing purple, red, and pink. They encourage others to show up for the event and wear the colors in support of victims and survivors of domestic violence and abuse.

1 Billion Rising is an international organization that began in 2012. On their website, onebillionrising.org, they say, “1 in 3 women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. With the world population at 7 billion, this adds up to more than ONE BILLION WOMEN AND GIRLS.”

While the event will be taking place here in Roanoke, it will also be happening all over the globe as the “biggest mass action to end violence against women in human history.” They choose to use dance as a way of healing and expressing the need to end gender violence. “Dance is one of the most powerful forces on the earth and we have only just begun to tap into where it can take us. The struggle of humanity is the struggle to return to our bodies. Through trauma, cruelty, shame, oppression, violence, rape, exclusion, the body of the human species has been hurt, wounded, and we have been forced to flee our bodies.”

So if you don’t have any plans for Valentine’s Day, or would like to spend time with your partner making a difference, come out to Valley View Mall this Saturday at 12:00 PM to join in the fun.

 

Written by Krista Knauer