Who I Met Today

Everyone has a story – Collecting & sharing interesting info, life lessons, & fun things to see & do from the wonderful people in our world

Category People to Meet

Introducing Patty Russell and Her Groom’s Cakes

As we chatted with the baker at an upscale Italian bakery in a trendy section of Brooklyn, my son and I explained what we wanted. The gentleman, who had been baking panettone and cannoli and biscotti in this neighborhood long before it turned hip and cool, looked at us with a slight amount of distaste— and a whole lot of surprise. “You want two cakes at this wedding?” he said.

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Jim Laurent and His Brahman Cattle

Jim Laurent relaxes with a book in the straw-filled “home” he and his wife share in the cavernous exhibit hall. Their area is tidy and swept, and a crockpot of chili simmers on a cloth-covered portable table. The background noise is a constant and comfortable lull –  the bellow of goats, pigs, and cows. One of the largest and richest rodeos in the world, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo

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Brian Castillo – Adaptive Snow Sports at Park City’s National Ability Center

For those of you who don’t know the quiet thrill of sliding down a mountain – carving out turns and leaving tracks in the snow, relishing the scenery and the solitude – it is exhilarating.  And always a little bit out of my comfort zone.  When I try to imagine doing this with one leg, no sight, or without the ability to use my body to lean into a turn

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Chris Pence – What Does a Sound Engineer Do?

Since moving to Nashville, I spend more time listening to live music in a variety of venues around town. After all, this is Music City.  Aside from raw talent and lots of practice, I never think about what else makes for an outstanding show.  According to Chris Pence, a sound engineer with country and pop bands, “When everything at a show sounds great, the artist is wonderful!  But when things

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Barbara Heilman and UnbuckleMe

Eager to care for her brand new granddaughter, Barbara Heilman’s first order of business was to shop for a car seat.  She couldn’t operate the model her daughter, Becca Davison, owned, and she wanted something easy to use.  However, when Barb and Becca returned from their shopping trip, Barb was frustrated and slightly panicked.  She didn’t have the strength to unbuckle any of the car seats in the stores.  When

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Brian O’Connor – Good Dye Young and a Farm with a Purpose

Thirteen years ago, Hayley William’s hair stylist was out on leave, and Brian O’Connor was her next available option. Making small talk as she sat in his chair, Brian asked Hayley the basic questions about what she was doing and where she was working. Laughing now, as he recalls their initial conversation, Brian said he secretly rolled his eyes when Hayley told him she wrote and sang songs.  Of course

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Xima Lee Hulings and Walking Papers Studio

Showing me around her meticulously organized and overflowing art studio, I have a hard time keeping up with Xima Lee Hulings.  Amidst pens and paints and textiles and even a blow torch, she talks about her life and paintings and projects in her rapid-fire, exuberant way.  Inspiring and educational, she motivates me to make a mess and create something.  Because, as Xima laughs out loud and says, “Life is an

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Bruce Tyler – Give Without Expectations

I recently accompanied a friend to the hospital for a routine, albeit still unsettling, outpatient procedure.  Sitting in the waiting area, I noticed a gentleman staff member, dressed in scrubs, who escorted patients to their assigned medical spaces.  As he greeted and directed a constant flow of patients, I continued to watch and listen to him.  He captured my attention by being an exception.  In this world of instant gratification

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Meet Mary Hance – The Tennessean’s Ms. Cheap

I have talked about my mid-life move to Nashville – no friends or family here,  kids grown and gone.  Arriving in town, I read everything I could get my hands on about happenings in our new city.  I was searching for ways to meet people and create a sense of belonging.  Now it is two years later –  Mary Hance willingly agrees to meet with me, and I feel like

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Jade Roser – Cheekwood’s Holiday Lights

On a gloomy Monday in October, this Nashville treasure swarms with activity.  Despite the misty morning, a crew works to put finishing touches on transforming the 55-acre botanical garden into a magical, holiday wonderland.  As we stroll around the Cheekwood estate and grounds, built with the Maxwell House coffee fortune, Jade Roser gives me a behind-the-scenes look into how Holiday Lights comes together.  With his easy going, infectious enthusiasm, Jade

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