Archive for February, 2009

The Joker and Me
February 27, 2009

The Joker just emailed me these photos from the Pgh Film Office’s Oscar party.  


Even though I look terrified …. notice how I keep holding on to my chocolate covered popcorn! LOL. That stuff is amazing. I don’t know which vendor supplied it for the event… but I hope to find out…. because it was YUMMY!

The Joker’s real name is Brian…. and he won “best dressed” at the event. 


  Thanks for the photos Brian!

Catching Up with My Obstetrician
February 26, 2009

Wow!  I ran into the doctor who was such a huge part of the birth of my two children. Talking to Dr Christina LaBella brought back so many wonderful memories of  expecting… all the excitement and all the nervousness and all the fears….   and the moments I held my children for the first time.


Dr LaBella and all the other doctors and nurses in the Western Pa OB/GYN Associates were so fantastic. I so clearly remember trying to choose a doctor back then…. I saw that Dr. LaBella completed her post-graduate training at Magee Women’s Hospital and earned her medical degree, cum laude, from State University of New York in Syracuse. She graduated from St. Lawrence University in Canton, N.Y., magna cum laude, with degrees in biology and physics. 

Chrstina M. LaBella, MD

All day I’ve been having flashbacks of  that time …. which doesn’t seem like that long ago!   I just wish I had had my children with me when I saw her. : )

National Acrobats of China
February 24, 2009

If you’re looking for something to do this weekend… this looks very interesting! 
Saturday, February 28, 2009 at 8:00 p.m., Byham Theater
PITTSBURGH, PA — The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust presents the National Acrobats of China, who will perform a mesmerizing, mystifying, and stunning display of the best in Chinese martial arts, illusion, and acrobatics at the Byham Theater on Saturday, February 28, 2009 at 8:00 p.m.  Cohen & Grigsby is the season sponsor of the Trust Presents series. 
The National Acrobats of China troupe was founded in June, 1956, and has since evolved into one of the most influential acrobatic troupes in the world. Lead by Deputy Directors Mr. Tian Zichun and Mr. Yao Jianguo, National Acrobats of China has dazzled audiences in more than 30 countries and has been described by The New York Times as “youthful, handsome and graceful,” and a “refreshing alternative to Western tradition.”
It was during the Han Dynasty, more than two thousand years ago, that the Chinese saw the first acrobats, magicians, and jugglers. Acrobatics developed out of the annual village harvest celebrations, during which performers demonstrated amazing strength and impossible balance. Highly skilled, rigorously trained, and superbly talented, the National Acrobats of China continue to build on these traditional performances and today’s artists have added new techniques and spectacular stunts thrilling audiences around the globe. The National Acrobats of China use objects of daily life in the performances—chairs, tables, poles, ladders, bowls, plates, bottles and jars—as props for contortionism, martial arts, drumming, and dance. Their precise movements and flexible showmanship combine for unforgettable displays of magic and wonder. After a performance, an audience member summed up what they saw: “Beautiful costumes- such precise synchronization of choreography- it was absolutely incredible.”
Tickets ($10, $20, $25)for the National Acrobats of China may be purchased at the Box Office at Theater Square (655 Penn Avenue), online at, or by calling (412) 456-6666.  To purchase 10 or more tickets at special discounted rates, please call (412) 471-6930.                        

Lights! Glamour! Action!
February 24, 2009

We had a great time at the Pittsburgh Film Office’s annual fundraising event: Lights! Glamour! Action! 2009. 


The Pgh Film Office is important to our region because when movies are made here….. jobs and cash come here, too. 

Zack & Miri, Smart People, Wonderboys, Striking Distance, Flashdance….. the list goes on…  

In 2008, 11 feature films were completed here. These films alone, brought in  more than $50 million into the regional economy.  

On a personal note: My thanks to Chairman of the Pittsburgh Film Office Board of Trustees Russ Streiner. (And by “thanks” I mean “did you really have to embarrass me???” ) LOL.   At an earlier party I recorded some famous movie lines along with my brother, Derek.  I couldn’t help but giggle the whole way through my lines from Braveheart and apparently Russ thought it was just too much fun to edit out… and showed all of my out-takes at the big party! 

On another personal note: I think Derek had a great time at the event. I forced these women dressed up as movie characters to stand by him for this photo. I sent it to his twin brother, David, so we could make fun of him…. but it looks like he didn’t seem to mind.  (If you see this Mom… sorry!) 


Little Black Dress Way of Living
February 23, 2009

Click here for a website from two local women who are working to make our lives easier.  They’ve written a book called The Little Black Dress Way of Living


     I found this book at the Pittsburgh Film Office’s Oscar party (I’ll talk about that event next… FUN!)  

     Local authors, Jamie Belo and Kathy Burke, give us all tips on how to live a more relaxed more fulfilling life…. with less.  Great idea!

     (And it would make a great gift idea!) 

   Here’s information from the website: 

To a new and better way of living.
The Little Black Dress Way… of Living.

Living the Little Black Dress Way eliminates all of the unwanted extras that creep into your world. And it allows you to focus in on what really matters. You. The time has come to embrace Living Lean, Living with Less, Living in Love, and Living your best Life ever. Our secret is to conquer each of these elements of life with ease and simplicity so that all four are always in check . You see girlz, when one important area of your life goes askew, the other three tend to follow. The key is to learn how to appreciate the simplicity of The Little Black Dress! We wrote this book to show you how to do just that…

Yours truly,
The Little Black Dress Girlz

Jamie Belo Is the wife of Craig Patrick, the former General Manager of the NHL Pittsburgh Penguins of 17 years, and as the Assistant Manager of the 1980 “Miracle on Ice” Olympic Hockey Team. Jamie’s career has been involved in developing kids programming for FOX and, as a director/producer for NHL gamenight entertainment content for the JumboTron Sport screen.

Kathy Burke A former pediatric nurse at Boston Children’s Hospital and Shriners Burn Institute, Kathy is the wife of a leading orthopaedic surgeon and the team doctor for the NHL Pittsburgh Penguins Hockey Team. As a mom of four children, Kathy has been an active volunteer with school committees, comunity events and local sports teams.

Can You Read This?
February 22, 2009

My teenage neighbor emailed me this:

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by ist lef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig huh?

Andrew Dancing!
February 20, 2009

***update to previous post: click here to watch Andrew on the dance floor!

Race For the Cure Kickoff
February 20, 2009

It’s time to gear up for the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure!  We had a wonderful volunteer event at Bar Louie at Station Square. If you’d like to register for the Mother’s Day race click here.




I wanted to take more photos for you… but my camera battery died!  : (  It’s too bad because I couldn’t get a shot of Andrew Stockey dancing …. but I hear there is video… I’ll try to hunt for it and post it here. he he he

What’s Playing Now
February 18, 2009

Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at what’s playing now at the Carnegie Science Center’s  Omnimax Theater:  

It’s narrated by Jim Carrey and runs at the Omnimax Theater through this summer.

This is part of the press release from the Science Center:

Award-winning documentary filmmaker Howard Hall and the production team behind IMAX® film favorites Deep Sea and Into the Deep return for a dynamic new underwater adventure, Under the Sea.  Filmed entirely with IMAX® cameras for a vivid, immersive viewing experience unlike any other, this new film will transport audiences to some of the most exotic and isolated undersea locations on Earth, including Southern Australia and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as Papua New Guinea and Indonesia in the famed Coral Triangle, for face-to-face encounters with some of the most mysterious and stunning creatures of the sea. 

WTAE Winterfest Client Party
February 15, 2009

Here are a few photos I snapped at the WTAE Winterfest client party.  Lots of prizes and lots of fun.  Here is Erin drawing tickets for prizes. 


 Here is Leslie Wojdowski, Director of Marketing for Special Projects / Sales Promotion, at the mic… and you can see behind her on the left is Nancy Gormley,  our Sales Marketing Account Executive.  Helping out are two of our newest WTAE Interns… and my son Zach. : ) 


   And “We have a winner!” 


  Lots of Channel 4 folks were there… including Ari, Scott and Jennifer. (Shannon Perrine joined us for a while before her little girl got sick and they headed back to their room) 



    Here’s Ally in the middle of all the action… Erin was kind enough to “protect” Ally from the giant Pirate Parrot which made an unexpected appearance.


   We’re all already looking forward to next year!

Seven Springs Snowtubing
February 14, 2009

Another wonderful weekend of Winterfest. Here are Zach and Ally along with Stephen Cropper’s little girl Chloe having fun tubing.  More pictures coming! 




Pittsburgh Inventions
February 13, 2009

My kids had an assembly in school presented by the Heinz History Center talking about all the things invented in Pittsburgh or by Pittsburgers.  They searched the video on youtube and they’ve sent it to all of our out of state relatives to brag about how great our city is. Enjoy! 

Senator John Heinz History Center president and CEO Andy Masich traces Pittsburgh’s tradition of innovation. (Courtesy: Legal Eye Productions, LCC)

Six Burgh Reasons Contest
February 12, 2009

Here’s a press release I just got from the Mayor’s office. 



  Mayor Luke Ravenstahl today announced his Valentine’s Day contest for City residents. 

  This year’s contest, titled “Six Burgh Reasons Why I ♥ My Neighborhood,” celebrates the love Pittsburghers have for their neighborhoods and the stories behind their sentiments.  Tell the Mayor your love story with your neighborhood – incorporating six reasons why you feel that way.  Write an essay, narrate your story through photos or create a video.  If your entry is one of the top six chosen, you will be notified and honored at a neighborhood celebration in May, and your entry will be posted on the City’s website and the City Cable Channel.

Participants must be residents of the City of Pittsburgh and have until April 13, 2009to submit their entries.  Essays must be 250 words or less, and videos must be no longer than 10 minutes. Only written essays can be submitted online.  All entries can be mailed in, dropped off at the Mayor’s office or at any of the City of Pittsburgh Senior Centers. Click here to get to the city’s website with all the information.

Organ Donation Match Program
February 11, 2009

I’m doing a wonderful story tonight at 6:15. It’s about four people from western Pennsylvania who’ve become life-long friends after a life-saving procedure. It’s the first paired kidney donation performed at Allegheny General Hospital. (The procedure has been around nationally for a few years and there have been about 200 of these paired transplants so far)

 Two patients were desperately looking for a kidney . While no one in their own families matched for a donation…. they found out about a program from CORE which helps match families. So a healthy woman from Findlay Towship donated her kidney to a woman in Cambria County who’d been waiting two years for a transplant…. and the Cambria County woman’s brother in law in donated his healthy kidney to the husband of the woman from Findlay who’d also been waiting a couple of years.  The match made in Heaven moved both patients up on the transplant list. You’ll meet these wonderful people and their doctors tonight at 6:15.

If you have a loved one on an organ transplant waiting list and you’re willing to donate… but aren’t a match. You may want to consider this pairing program. Click here to get more information. 

Results are In!
February 11, 2009

The war between Jake and me is far from settled on which is better: HoHos or Swiss Rolls. I thought the survey and blind taste test would help but I was wrong. The thing is…..  the internet survey ended up picking the one and the blind taste test picked the other. So we’re right back where we started. 

The internet results:
Hohos = 363 

Swiss Rolls = 272

Newsroom Taste Test:

Swiss Rolls = 17 

HoHos = 9 

If you haven’t figured it out…. I’m the Swiss Roll fan while Jake loves HoHos.  

Here is wonderful producer Maria. In protest that both snack choices are bad…. she brought in a Hostess Cupcake for me to try. Yummy!  


  So many of you wrote in that they’re both best straight from the freezer….. like a frozen ice cream treat. I’ll have to try that next. 

While Jake and I will continue to disagree… at least we had fun and the entire Action News Team was pretty hyped up on sugar for the news last night. : )  I’m sure it showed on tv.  Here are some photos from the test. (I caught one person voting once for each snack! And one person insisted that she knew Snack B was a HoHo because it was her favorite all-time treat…. but she was wrong and finally the news team had to ask her to stop eating so many because we had to have an even amount of each for the test to continue! ha ha ha) And…. I do apologize for this last photo…….