June 2015 | Northboro Local First

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  1. Get to Know Derenda Jeffrey of Intentional Living

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    intentionalliving Intentional Living is Located at 300 West Main Street Suite C1, in the back of the Fox Meadow plaza. Services designed  to help you restore your  health and well being.

    Tell us about your background and how Intentional Living came to be?

    Thirty years ago I was working in corporate America as vice president of operations for executive suites in Dallas. As a single mom, I found myself exhausted and fairly miserable from working 50-60 hours a week, with seemingly no time to take care of myself, or my family. I had always been drawn to holistic health and a healthy lifestyle, but found it hard to fit into my crazy schedule. One day I had an “Aha!” moment, and realized that my health and well-being were important to not only myself, but also to my children and loved ones. In searching for a way to create a healthy lifestyle for myself and my family, I discovered my passion!

    I saw that the Health and Wellness movement was an up and coming industry, and I was ready for a career change, so I jumped on board!  It is an incredibly fulfilling and fun career, that has allowed me to work around my family’s schedule.

    derenda veggies I grew up with grandparents who had farms, chickens, gardens, and a root cellar! We knew where our food came from, (sometimes we knew it’s name!), and we played outside, climbed trees and played a lot of “let’s pretend…”

    The  culture we live in today is so different than even 50 years ago. Those changes have brought a slew of new health problems. I heard once that 85% of the leading causes of death in our country are diet and lifestyle related , and it left me speechless! We can change that! By learning how to incorporate healthy choices into our everyday lives we make an incredible impact on our health and vitality. And that is what I help people do, and I absolutely love doing it!

    I have studied at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Holistic MBA, and the Transformational Coaching Method. I also studied and have maintained a private practice in Jin Shin Jyutsu, (a powerful, yet gentle Japanese healing art) since 1989. I  am  certified as a Neuro-Developmentalist, working with children and adults with learning issues, such as ADD/ADHD. I have always been driven to get to the root cause of a problem, rather than treating the symptoms, and I believe this helps me to be a good coach and practitioner.

    With the fast pace stresses of today’s world, being intentional about creating a balance that fosters health and well-being is more important than ever.  There is more information available online than ever before, but information alone does not create change. Having someone work with you to ask the right kinds of questions and offer the right kind of accountability, encouragement and systems, can make all the difference in living your life to the fullest. Honestly, who wants to just survive when you can thrive with just a little bit of help?!

    What inspires you?

    Courage and bravery. I have jumped out of an airplane, flown an airplane and other extreme sports, but most of that did not really take courage from me, because I enjoy that kind of stuff. (ok, the jump out of the airplane did require either courage or checking my brain at the door…) When I see someone take a leap of faith and make changes or do something for their own good that scares them, when they push thru the fear and do it anyway, that inspires me. When I see someone stand up for what they believe in, even when it isn’t popular, that inspires me, even if I don’t agree with them. Courage and bravery often seem to require pushing thru personal fears, and that inspires me.

    What do you love about owning a small business?NLF-089

    I love that it is mine, that I get to do what I love, and set it up how I believe it needs to be. I love the freedom that comes with it, although owning your own business demands attention and a lot of work. I love the sense of creating something that is of benefit to others.

    Why did you choose Northboro for your business location?

    I love Northboro! We have so many local owned businesses, and it is so convenient. I find it a great town, very friendly and hospitable. You can find just about anything here!

    Even though I work with clients all over the country, by phone or internet, I find my office in Northboro very convenient for local clients. I often encourage them to eat local at any of our fabulous local restaurants!

    Why do you feel that supporting local businesses is important?

    It supports the community in a way that big chains and big business can’t, and don’t do. There is a place for big stores, but when you go into a local business you are supporting your neighbors, and those people will take good care of you, because they are your neighbors! Also, for me, I love finding unique, one of a kind items and hand crafted items. You won’t find those in chain stores.

    From an economic standpoint every dollar we spend on local business supports local families and that is important to all of us.

    Being local and small, tell us what you feel is the most important element to customer service?

    Knowing your client, valuing your client, and serving your client. After working in the holistic health field for more than 28 years, I consider it a privilege to work with my clients. Coaching is a personal relationship, and I never take that relationship lightly. I truly love people, and love being able to work with them to effect changes in their lives, which in turn creates a ripple effect in their family, friends, and work place relationships. The coaching models I use cover not only the food we eat, which I call Secondary food, but also address what I refer to as Primary food, the food that feeds your soul, which is relationships, activity, life calling and a spiritual walk, however that manifests itself for you. Only by working with the whole person can you help them to make lifelong changes. And that is worth the work!

    Do you have a favorite customer story you want to share?

    Recently I was working with a woman, who was doing a program I offer for weight loss. She was losing weight, had lots more energy and lost her sugar addiction. Then, one day I received an email from her saying, “OMG! my husband has lost 25 pounds while I have been working with you!” He wasn’t even doing my program! That is an example of a ripple effect that I love to hear about! She made positive, healthy changes that trickled throughout her family.  Gotta love that ripple effect!

    IMG_1399Quick-fire Round

    • My first job was: Dairy Queen!
    • My favorite movie is: An Ideal Husband, The Importance of Being Ernest, Second Hand Lions, I tend to enjoy movies that are uplifting and that make me laugh, preferably out loud!
    • I cannot live without: Laughter, Jasmine Green tea in the mornings, my children and grand-children, (not necessarily in that order!)
    • Beach or mountains: Definitely a beach at the bottom of the mountains.
    • The best advice I ever received is: When there is a decision to make, ask yourself  “what will I wish I had done in five years, ten years or thirty years?” Think long term.
    • A cause I care deeply about is: Helping women heal from trauma


    Photo’s by: Maranto Studios

  2. Get to Know Erin and Richard Romaine, Owners of Romaine’s Wood Grill & Bar

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    Romaines logoRomaine’s Wood Grill and Bar is located at 299 West Main St in the Times Square Plaza. Sophisticated American bistro cuisine meets five-star service in an upscale casual atmosphere.

    Tell us about your background and how Romaine’s came to be?

    Erin:  I grew up in Worcester and Richard grew up in Kaplan, LA., which is a small town in Lafayette Parish. I have a master’s degree in Education and Rich got his Associate’s degree from New England Culinary Institute in Vermont. We met while we were both working in the summer of 1991 at the Inn at Essex in Essex, VT. I was waiting tables and he was cooking.

    Romaines tipsWhat inspires you?

    Food!  Plain and simple.

    Why did you choose Northboro for your business location?

    We owned a very small 12 table bistro up in Gloucester and it was so difficult to make ends meet as it was seasonal.  Northborough seemed like an ideal spot- great location, close to Worcester, upscale community, good school system, year round business and most importantly close to my parents.

    Why do you feel that supporting local businesses is important?

    Romaines Bar with watermarkWe feel that supporting local business is an integral piece of being part of your community.  You develop an identity and a relationship with your patrons unlike in a big box store.

    You’re celebrating 16 years. Congratulations!! What do you attribute this success to?

    Great food, great staff, great support from our fabulous customers and our Chef de Cuisine, Andrew Hurd. He has been with us since the beginning and we wouldn’t be where we are without him.


    Romaine's Food 1Quick-fire Round with Erin:

    • My first job was: Folding clothes in the stock room of Maurice the Pants Man in Worcester.  Rich was a lifeguard.
    • My favorite movie is:  Mine is Unforgiven. Rich’s is Braveheart.
    • I cannot live without:  Chocolate.  Rich can’t live without me.
    • Beach or mountains: Both of us prefer the beach.
    • The best advice I ever received is:  “Take pride in anything you do.  It doesn’t matter if you’re the janitor or the CEO, just do your job and do it well.”  That was from my dad, Ray Clifford. Rich’s was “Don’t be afraid of working before and after the time clock.”


    Photos by Sue Ogar of Just So Designs


  3. Meet Brigitte Hartmann from Artemesia Center for Acupuncture and Natural Medicine

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    artemesiaLogoArtemesia Center for Acupuncture and Natural Medicine  offers the benefits of Traditional Chinese Medicine right in the heart of Northboro. Located at 10 Southwest Cutoff.


    Tell us about your background and how Artemesia, Center for Acupuncture & Natural Medicine came to be?

    I started out as a Nutritionist over 40 years ago, designing diets for handicapped children, and was living in Munich, Germany. During that time I befriended a group of Naturopathic MD’s and became deeply impressed with their ways of healing and helping people.

    At that time I was suffering from chronic bronchitis. An acupuncturist treated me for about 2 months, which eliminated the problem completely! I was fascinated and wanted to learn everything about it.  It took a few years, and a big turn in my life, before I decided to study Acupuncture myself. I graduated from New England Acupuncture School in 1991, and started my
    practice in Northboro a year later. It has been a wonderful community for me, and I love living and practicing here!

    Bri4AHWhat inspires you?

    I never stop learning.  Ancient Chinese Medicine is such an inspiring medical system – even after 24 years of practice, I keep expanding my knowledge, and am still amazed about the depth of this approach to healing – the most ancient and true body-mind system.


    What do you love about owning a small business?

    The independence! Making my own schedule, creating a healing space, and developing meaningful relationships with local business owners. 

    Why did you choose Northboro for your business location?

    Northboro chose me, I guess. In 1992, my Northboro-based acupuncture buddy moved to VT, asking me to finish treatments with her patients. I thought it was for a month, but found a community full of friendly and caring people, and decided to stay.



    Why do you feel that supporting local businesses is important?

    Supporting each other helps us grow, which in turn benefits the whole community, makes business sustainable, and attracts new businesses to the town.

    Being local and small, tell us what you feel is the most important element to customer service?

    Treat every client with respect, honesty and utmost care.


    Do you have a favorite client story you want to share?

    A 89-year old lady came to see me for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. I asked her how she had developed the problem. She said, she had recently learned to use CAD CAM on a computer, and had been using the mouse for hours every day.  I was stunned.  All I could reply was “ I hope I only have your problem when I’m 89”.


    px w face acupuncture 72dpiQuick-fire Round

    • My first job was: Nutritionist in Munich, Germany
    • My favorite movie is: The English Patient
    • I cannot live without:  My sweetheart Karl, my garden, and yoga
    • Beach or mountains: Love both
    • The best advice I ever received is: from my dad: ”Don’t get a credit card, unless you can pay it off every month”. It has kept me out of debt.
    • A cause I care deeply about is: Children’s and teenager’s nutrition. So much of the brain’s and body’s development depends on the right nourishment


    Photos by Sue Ogar of Just So Designs and Lisa Maselli

  4. Meet Marile Borden from Metal Creative

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    metal creative logo

    Metal Creative is a little marketing agency with big ideas. Based in Northborough, but operating “virtually”, they service clients across town—and across the country.


    Tell us about your background and how Metal Creative came to be?

    In 2001, I had just left the “big agency” world and was working as a freelance Art Director. I was pretty busy working for a number of clients, big and small, and the work was great—but I kept facing one small problem. The clients kept asking for more: “Do you know any great copywriters? Can you do media buying? Have you ever developed a Flash Demo?” So I kept reaching out to friends and former colleagues and, before I knew it, I was “employing” a whole network of ex-agency pros—Creatives, Account Managers, Media Buyers and more—without having to put them on payroll or give them window offices. I decided it was a great model. I could offer top agency talent, with a whole lot less overhead. It was the birth of a “virtual” agency. Today, almost 15 years later, the model still works!

    What inspires you?

    I am inspired by creative people—both in my own field, and beyond. I love to see exceptional design, great writing and clever marketing strategies. But I also love to see a beautifully designed and decorated house. Or a brilliant entrepreneurial idea (I’m addicted to Shark Tank). Or an ingenious new way of solving a problem.

    What do you love about owning a small business?metal

    I love the flexibility it affords me. I love the people I get to meet. And I especially love the challenges it brings. I used to be just an Art Director. Now I’m an Art Director, a Creative Director, an Accountant, and Office Manager, a Trash Collector. (Well, maybe not a Trash Collector, but sometimes I feel like one!)

    Why did you choose Northboro for your business location?

    My husband and I chose Northborough as our home in 2004 because we knew it would be a wonderful place to raise our family. The business just came along for the ride!

    Why do you feel that supporting local businesses is important?

    I want to live in a town with a strong sense of community. I want my kids to reap the benefits of that—in school, on the playing field, at social events. I want my family to be proud of the town we live in, and to continually strive to make it a better place. I can’t think of a better way to do this than by supporting the people who keep our community alive.

    Being local and small, tell us what you feel is the most important element to customer service?

    Delivering (and I don’t mean Chinese food). Tell your clients what to expect and when to expect it. Then make it happen.

    2015 NLF Metal Creative-6Quick-fire Round

    • My first job was: Sold Produce at a Farm Stand
    • My favorite movie is: The Holiday
    • I cannot live without: TV (embarrassing as that is)
    • Beach or mountains: Beach!!!!



    Photos by Photos by Sue Ogar of Just So Designs

  5. Get to Know Lola Boyers from Lalajava

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    Lalajava is located at 290 West Main St at the intersection where Rt 20 and Main St split.  “A hot spot to chill”

    Tell us about your background and how Lalajava came to be?  

    Lalajava came to be because of Sonny Bono.  Our relationship with Sonny in Palm Springs California was a catalyst in the launch of Lalajava.  He was instrumental in changing the tourism industry in P.S.  Knowing the changing demographics we also had to make the change.  We catered to tourism and the Spring Break crowd to a more family-oriented industry because of Sonny. Club Palm Springs dissolved.  At the time we modeled ourselves after the then not-so-giant Starbucks!  We heard about this coffee craze and jumped on board.


    What inspires you?  

    I am inspired by a good challenge!  Just tell me something can’t be done and I will do it bigger and better than one can imagine.

    What do you love about owning a small business?  

    Owning a small business gives me the opportunity to mentor my young workers.  Many of them come to me as their first job experience.  Several times in the past I have received random text messages or letters from former employees thanking me for all they have learned working at Lalajava.

    Why did you choose Northborough for your business location?  

    Our Rt. 9 Shrewsbury location was purchased by a grocery store and we were forced to leave. Initially we were looking in Shrewsbury.  When the Northborough location opened up it seemed
    like it would be a nice neighborhood spot!  We knew we would enjoy the community feel Northborough brings.  And we do!

    NLF-221LWhy do you feel that supporting local businesses is important?  

    America was born on small local business.  We are the spirit of the nation.  We must keep this alive.

    Being local and small, tell us what you feel is the most important element to customer service?  

    The most important element to customer service is keeping it personal.  We have many regulars coming in daily and for years.  We know most of them by name.  We get to know them and their stories.  The best thing:  all the customers get to know one another and become friends…just like Cheers!

    Do you have a favorite customer story you want to share?  

    Absolutely!  One day while we were extremely busy there was a line out the door.  While in line this young man started talking to the young woman in front of him.  Once they received their drinks they decided to have their coffee together.  Two hours later they left and went to the movies.  Two years later they came into Lalajava wearing their bridal gown and tux and had a cup of coffee, after their wedding!


    Quick-fire Round

    •  My first job was: Mail sorter
    •  My passion is: holistic health
    •  I cannot live without: my family
    •  Beach or mountains: I’ll take both
    •  The best advice I ever received is: ‘tomorrow will come’
    •  A cause I care deeply about is: the health of children



    Photo’s by: Maranto Studios