Patricia Falvey, author of The Yellow House, The Linen Queen and the upcoming The Girls of Ennismore, writes historical novels from the perspective of a native of Ireland who immigrated to the United States when she was 20. The Dallas resident will be in Ohio at the end of the month for the Dublin Irish Festival, which takes place July 31 and Aug. 1 and 2 outside of Columbus. Patricia will speak on "The Emigrant's Search for Home" and sign copies of her books. Her soon-to-be-published novel has been called the "Irish Downton Abbey." Visit her website.
Leslie McCafferty and Saule Narbutaitis are partners in Eclectique Interior Accessories Inc. Leslie is an artist who used to be a civil engineer for ODOT and Saule is an interior designer who used to be an occupational therapist. They have merged their talents to help homeowners improve their surroundings with beautiful and functional accessories. Visit Saule at the Bello Design showroom at the Ohio Design Centre in Beachwood. You can reach Leslie through her art site or reach them both through the Eclectique site.
Marina Schaum is the president of and creative force behind Ohio Valley Herbal Products, a natural skin-care line featuring wild herbs that grow in Ohio. The company, based in East Liverpool, offers an array of excellent products, from deoderant and shampoo to beauty bars and face and body cream. They're available online and at home and art shows throughout the region. Marina will be in Westlake next weekend at the St. John Medical Center Festival of the Arts, the premier fine art and boutique crafts show in the Cleveland area. It starts Friday, July 10, from 6 to 9 p.m. and continues next Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Marina also is beginning to sell her herbal products through direct marketing. For more information, call 330.382.1229.
Jeffrey Paul is the co-founder with his wife Zina of Wigs for Kids, the Westlake, Ohio-based nonprofit that provides customized hair replacement systems to children who have lost their hair due to disease and other problems. The organization has been in existence for about 35 years and has helped countless individuals. One of the ways to support Wigs for Kids is to attend the 10th Annual Wigs for Kids Day at the Zoo, which takes place July 25 at the Cleveland MetroParks Zoo, 3900 Wildlife Way. To learn more about the event or how to donate your hair -- and get a free style by top Cleveland hairdressers -- visit the Wigs for Kids website. You also can find out how to support the organization by buying a T-shirt designed by a Kent State University fashion student in honor of her mother who died of cancer.
Margie and Ray Toombs are the owners of the local Maid Brigade, the green-clean certified cleaning company. Margie says that during the hot summer months, homeowners often notice mold in their bathrooms. Maid Brigade doesn't use bleach because it's a toxic product, but Margie says that homeowners may want to use it to kill the mold. You can sign up for an e-newsletter of tips and other information by going to the Maid Brigade site.
Dena McCall Crow is a consultant for Vivesan, a company that makes plant-based cleaning products. A couple of the products -- the global cleaner and the degreaser -- actually can kill mold without the use of toxic products, she says. For more information about Vivesan and its sister company, Vivebloom, visit the Vivesan website.
Dena also is one of three partners in Vintage Rose and Lace, a shop on Etsy, an online store for handmade and vintage items. The other partners are Mary Anne Cole and Barb Shilling. All three sell cool vintage items, including china, glassware, home decor, jewelry, kitchenware, linens, pottery, silver and toys. To see what's available, visit VintageRoseandLace on Etsy.
Michael Gurian is a marriage and family counselor and the New York Times best-selling author of 28 books. His latest is the terrific Lessons of Lifelong Intimacy: Building a Stronger Marriage without Losing Yourself -- The Nine Principles of a Balanced and Happy Relationship. Included are five practical strategies that can end your power struggles with your mate. The book is available on Michael's website and wherever books are sold, including on Amazon.
John Sharp of River Valley Paper Company says that his company has 1,300 recycling bins throughout Northeast Ohio, many located in the parking lots of schools, churches and even fire stations. A portion of the recycling proceeds are given to those who host the bins -- to the tune of $911,000 in the past four and a half years. You can recycle junk mail, magazines, newspapers, clean pizza and cereal boxes and anything else that can be torn. Look for the distinctive green bins with the flowers painted on them. There are tips and a bin finder on the website along a list of the charities that River Valley supports with this program. Also, River Valley will shred documents for free on Saturdays -- while you watch -- from 8 a.m. to noon at 131 N. Summit St. in Akron.
Helen Dauka is the communications and volunteer projects manager for Keep Akron Beautiful. She talked about Beautification Watch, which is a summer program that has been in existence for 34 years. Basically, volunteers canvas Akron streets looking for residences and businesses that keep their properties well-maintained and looking great. The lots can be any size. Last year, more than 3,000 people received certificates lauding them for their beautification efforts. For more information about this and other Keep Akron Beautiful projects, visit the website or call 330.375.2116.
Janet Harrington of J.R. Shoup Locksmith says to be wary of scams perpetrated by those pretending to be legitimate locksmiths. Get to know a locksmith before you need one, she says. Make sure the person gives you a written estimate on company letterhead and shows up in a vehicle with the company name on it. She has other tips that will help you avoid being squeezed by someone who lowballs an estimate and then overcharges after taking your lock apart. J.R. Shoup has been in business for 108 years. It's located at 572 W. Market. You can visit the website or call 330.434.4026.