Inside the Douglaston School of Music and Art, certified yoga instructor, Daniela Crocchiola, uses her years of experience and extensive training to guide students through hot vinyasa yoga and ballet bar classes. Brought to her mother's yoga classes as a young cobra, Crocchiola learned the benefits of regular stretch sessions at an early age and credits the practice for helping her grow physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. While working in Manhattan in fashion and cosmetic marketing, Crocchiola studied a variety of yoga styles, such as Bikram, ashtanga, and kundalini, and obtained 200 hour yoga teaching certifications recognized by the Yoga Alliance and by loyal downward facing dogs everywhere. In addition to being a certified yoga instructor, Crocchiola's skills equip her to lead Pilates and ballet bar workouts.
The staffers at Hard Candy Cases amass protective gear for iPhones, cell phones, iPods, tablets, and MacBooks, ensuring that each item meets high standards for engineering and style. MacWorld and the New York Times have both acknowledged the company’s sleek, functional iPad cases, with the latter recommending Hard Candy Cases’ bubble-sleeve products for their chic minimalism. Form-fitting iPad 2 street skins protect vulnerable screens with a magnetic, integrated enclosure, whereas chic, enameled styluses—compatible with pads, phones, and pods—flip to reveal a secondary ink pen for signing business documents or U.N. peace treaties. The original designs, constructed by top-notch engineers, spring from analytical research, and laser model scanners ensure the quality of all the fashion-savvy accessories.
At first it seemed like the only people who would ever hear about Patrick Caldwell's pies were his friends and family. Using a recipe born in North Carolina and passed down from his mother, he'd craft his specialty white-sweet-potato pie for every family gathering. But it was his mother-in-law who gave him the final push to turn his pie-making hobby into a full-time endeavor. Using the family recipe as a blueprint, Patrick began to tweak the formula to make it perfect, aging his white sweet potatoes in a wine cellar for nine months to enhance their natural sweetness and cure them of their fear of the dark. Before long, Patrick's Famous Pies were in high demand at area farmer's markets, where he still sells them today alongside other specialties like sweet-potato bread and peach cobbler.
With five branches and over 80 franchised learning centers in the United States and Canada, JEI Learning Center has found international success, including an educational TV station, thanks to its model of self-paced learning.
Prospective students begin with a diagnostic test to determine their ability level, at which point they'll be placed in groups with a maximum ratio of five students to one instructor. Sessions are held weekly, one hour per subject??there are Common Core State Standards aligned with curriculums in math, language arts, reading, writing, and problem solving??with provided workbooks and daily homework exercises.
Though Malika and Adeyinka Awobajo's baked goods are decorative and tasty, they are made with more than dessert in mind. The pair, who founded Mika?s Cupcakes in May of 2011, began constructing confections years prior in order to help feed and care for homeless families in the area. Today, they apply a portion of proceeds toward helping the homeless population in the Bay area, as well as set some money aside for a future youth transitional shelter.
Mika's ovens breathe life into a multitude of signature cupcakes, which come in both classic and inventive flavors. Nearly hedonic ingredients such as amaretto and mocha infuse Indulgent Treats cupcakes, whereas sundae cupcakes come with a cherry on top to render them as sweet as a kindergartner's plea to go see CSPAN on Ice. Fondant-coated gourmet cakes serve as personal-sized desserts for giants, and cake pops offer convenient sugar consumption during games of double dutch. Strawberries and pretzel rods doused in chocolate take a dip into chopped almonds or chocolate chips, whereas granny-smith apples submerged in caramel break the surface smothered in chocolate or nuts.
Cameron is a guy who was pretty clueless in the kitchen, and though having been a meat-eater his whole life, is becoming more sensitive to animal cruelty issues. Kathy is a woman who, because of religious practices, has to abstain from eating meat and dairy for nearly half the year. Though their impetuses for changing their diets were quite different, the solution to their problems was the same: The Vegan Garden—a meal delivery system that specializes in plant-based cuisine.
The Vegan Garden designs meal plans for a variety of clients, whether they're longtime vegans or people curious about transitioning to an animal-free diet. The Pioneer Meal deal, for instance, lets newbies sample staple vegan dishes by signing up for one week's worth of meals, desserts, and dinner bibs. Committed vegans can opt for more long-term plans, which include two months' worth of custom or preset menus. There are also specialty packages for weight loss and gluten-free diets.
The meals themselves are made using mostly organic ingredients local to The Vegan Garden's home base in San Francisco. For the sake of variety, menu options are inspired by many international and regional cuisines, such as Middle Eastern, Thai, Mexican, French, Caribbean, and Southern. Soy- and tofu-based dishes include everything from huevos con chorizo and veggie chow mein to jambalaya and verde pesto pasta. Meals come fully prepared and only need to be warmed to the diner's desired temperature before they're ready to eat.