Sunday, April 22, 2012

New Jersey Great Dr. Joseph Miranda

New Jersey Great Dr. Joseph Miranda

Ever think you would say the words “I love going to the dentist”? Well I do; and it is not just because Dr. Miranda tells me how beautiful my teeth are. It is because he is great, caring man, who more than gives back to the community he was raised in. His roots run deep (no pun intended).

From as early as 8th grade Joe Miranda was intrigued with science and the biology of how things are created. His father’s medical practice was located in the lower level of the house he grew up in, in Whippany. After an intern opportunity and graduating from Delbarton, he knew that dentistry was his focus. When he completed dental school, he did a one year program at Morristown Memorial Hospital. It was here he decided to open his own practice. With great medical dentistry experience and a solid reputation he did just that, in the same office his father practiced medicine.

His approach to dentistry is a little different than what you see today. He is “The” dentist, it is not a large group practice. He knows each patient, their history,  and their set of needs.  He does not push or even promote trendy cosmetic procedures; he focuses on preventative care, educating his patients and building trust. “Natural beauty can not be created, but issues can be resolved” he says, and is overwhelmed at the demand for cosmetic procedures where pathology is not present. “The science of dentistry must always come first, then beauty” says Joe, founding his practice on this, as is all sound medical treatment.

A big fan of New Jersey, Dr. Miranda kept his practice in the town he grew up in. To this day he has patients in their 90s that in his youth, he shoveled their driveways. He always supports local activities and opens his doors to interns. I know Dr. Miranda because my father was his science teacher at Memorial Junior School many years ago. He knew Joe to be a stand out and has trusted him to take care of us for many years. My own children go to him as well. You will not read about him in a local or medical magazine that accepts payment to insure a “high rating” on his practice. You also will not see his face plastered on a billboard heading West on Route ten offering to make your teeth look 10 years younger. But if you are traveling on Whippany Rd, just past Whippany Park High School, look for his sign. Better yet, call him and make an appointment.  You will come out educated and even looking forward to your next visit.

Dr. Joseph Miranda
279 Whippany Road

Sunday, April 1, 2012


The great state of New Jersey was named such by Sir John Berkley and Sir George Carteret. Carteret was a native of the island of Jersey in the English Channel and served as Lieutenant Governor for several years. It was the third state to ratify the U.S. Constitution in 1787 and was the first to ratify the Bill of Rights in 1789. Among the first to join the great Union of this nation, New Jersey is rich in history, industry and greenery?

There is some confusion in the origin of the nick name “The Garden State”. It was first heard at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia by Abraham Browning of Camden. According Alfred Heston’s book, “Jersey Waggon Jaunts” Browning said “that our Garden State is an immense barrel, filled with good things to eat and open at both ends, with Pennsylvanians grabbing from one end and New Yorkers from the other’.  Strangely enough, the name stuck.

From as early 1791, New Jersey has been an industry heavy state, leading the country in industry and complete with major transportation connections across land, sea and air. In 1954, legislature voted to add the nick name “Garden State to New Jersey license plates. Governor Robert Meyner actually refused to sign the bill stating “"New Jersey is noted for its great strides in manufacturing, mining, commerce, construction, power, transportation, shipping, merchandising, fishing and recreation, as well as in agriculture. I do not believe that the average citizen of New Jersey regards his state as more peculiarly identifiable with gardening for farming than any of its other industries or occupations." He vetoed the bill, legislature overrode the veto and the rest is history.

Perhaps Governor Meyner was on to something. To this day, New Jersey boasts some of the richest history, resources and commerce in the country and it most definitely the gate way to the world. Maybe the Garden State refers to the rich “soil” this state has to offer to grow the most abundant, lush gardens. I would vote for that.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


As we round out Nation Eating Disorders Awareness week, I had to give some press to a truly wonderful place right here in NJ, that has helped thousands of women break free from the demons of not only eating disorders, but many mental health challenges. In 1985, Renfrew opened the nation’s first residential mental health facility for women in Philadelphia. Since then, centers have opened in Florida, New Jersey, Texas, Connecticut, North Carolina, Tennessee, New York and Maryland. They are part of a national network specializing in the treatment of anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorders.

Below is a brief overview of their individualized treatment programs. In a future post, we are honored to give an in depth look at this wonderful place and the amazing people who help change lives. There is contact information below, please share this as NEDA is something that touches all of our lives in some way.

The Renfrew Center has a comprehensive approach to mental health issues, and our experienced staff members specialize in the psychology of women. We recognize the many biological, social, and cultural contexts of women's lives and their impact on a woman's well-being. Our treatment programs respect each woman's individuality and encourage women to participate actively in their own growth and recovery. Treatment is designed to be collaborative rather than imposed, interactive rather than passive, and personal rather than distant or neutral. Our innovative programs emphasize the value and healing potential of healthy interpersonal relationships.
The Renfrew Center offers a comprehensive range of services so that treatment can be tailored to meet individual needs. After an assessment, treatment goals and plans are developed in collaboration with the client and her referring therapist if applicable. Our goal is to provide the appropriate level of treatment based on each woman's situation and to facilitate timely transitions to less intensive levels of care. We will be happy to verify your insurance benefits to determine how your coverage applies to Renfrew services.
For more information on The Renfrew Center, please call 1-800-RENFREW (736-3739).                                              

Wednesday, February 15, 2012



It’s not everyday, you enter an airplane full of military special forces, and in the midst is a retired Navy spitfire turned soap maker from Maryland making beaded bracelets. It is also not every day you enter your neighbor’s house and the smell of basil fills the entire place, but she’s not cooking. Enter the fabulous Lori Abercrombie, and her amazing company Lather and Lace. Her company motto, Mae West Meets Martha Stewart, implies a bit of saucy meets practicality. I found this little gem, where else, but Twitter, and she is NJGreats second Across The Border feature. She was too good NOT to write about.

Lather and Lace is not the “petal tossing” stuffy upscale spa kind of company. It is about real skin care & relaxation; inspired by the old west and how the natural seasons affect every day life. On top of using the finest ingredients Lori offers many scent choices from  highly aromatic fragrance oils to healing essential oils. One use of Whipped Into A Lather (whipped soap) and your shower, bathroom and surrounding areas smell wonderful for hours. 

These are not just “lookin pretty” products either. Shea’mon Me is hardworking moisture for working skin, delivering super moisture from natural shea butter and wildly scented with too many choices to mention including newly added I Found My Thrill - Blueberry. The list of scents is endless and some of the combinations are irresistible. While my daughters are currently in “Almond Joy” mode, my entire upper floor has boasted the scents of both Fresh & Spirit Horse. One time I left the house just after a shower, and the car smelled great too, not an easy task for a momma taxiing 3 teens, like me.

As if all this wasn’t enough to get you to Lori’s website, she has an amazing heart and loves to give back. She says she does what she loves, after a long military career and spending 16 years selling among the competitive skin care lines. The first time I shopped at her site I was drawn to “Jars for Joy”, a campaign to sell 1000 jars of her product donating proceeds to a wellness farm for horses. I bought a bunch and shared them with the horse lovers in my life.

Birthed in 2009 Lather and Lace is such a unique line, offering wonderful ingredients, amazing scents, and something a little special in Miss Lori. I recommend tweeting with her right away, just tell her I sent you. Stop by her website of the same name ( for some handcrafted soaps, one of kind jewelry and gifts. Her newly launched skin care line is getting rave reviews. This line is years of experience and NO filler. I can't wait to try it, and will write about it all it's own, I have to, Lori double-dog dares anyone who tries and doesn't love!  Oh, the opening line is a true story, our Miss Lori is a Navy hero, serving in both Iraq and Afghanistan. One flight over, to lighten things up, she sat in the middle of an entire plane of Special Forces flying over Afghanistan and began making pearl bracelets. She had them all talking and leaning over asking questions about what kind of pearls they were and maybe enjoying just a moment of normal life. Now that’s my kind of girl. Please visit Lather and Lace  for a unique experience for the senses and some of the best skin care out there.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


What is it that gets your mind focused, that place, referred to as “the zone” where your focus is locked and your performance is optimal? For Elliot Hagburg, it was the lack of excellent mentoring, that led him to find his own way into the Zone. He not only “got it” but created a manual to train young athletes how to get there as well. I was so impressed with GettingIntoThe Zone, I could not wait to interview co-author Kathy Hagburg, and could not wait to share it at NJGreats.

I recently met with Kathy and she shared her and her son  Elliot’s journey to writing Getting Into The Zone. Kathy had a career in both sales and personal training; Elliot, a recruited, catcher and stand out athlete. As a four year starter, Division 1 catcher he, played for three different Head Coaches.  Despite a less than wonderful experience with college athletics, Elliot decided to help arm young athletes with a guide to strengthening the mind to prepare for any situation both on and off the field. Kathy brought both her sales and training expertise to the table to create the ultimate manual for success.

I read the book in less than an hour, it is not just pages of theory, but an interactive manual. After each principle is presented, the reader is then asked to respond, list or create a response that puts that principle to work. My favorite part of the book is a great example of this. The Hagburgs breakdown of the negative self talk that becomes lodged in the subconscious mind; things that have been spoken over us or about us that we now believe about ourselves. Put simply:

      “Our subconscious minds will act out the story/script we unknowingly provide with     
        our thoughts. A person can study 24/7 and not succeed until he extracts “I’m a
        lousy test taker and plants “I am a terrific test taker”.

Through various written exercises, Getting Into The Zone helps the young athlete succeed no matter what script has been written for them, no matter what circumstances exist in his or her life. I applaud Elliot for having the courage to not only over-come his negative experiences, but to see the need to put this book out there and help others as well. Not to mention Kathy’s support and terrific marketing skills. The real bonus of this book, is not  just the lesson learned. Elliot holds live seminars to deliver this message in a dynamic way. On top of that, he offers the seminar and the book as a fundraising opportunity to youth programs all over New Jersey.

Please take the time to read this book, recommend it to every coach and parent you know.
It was a pleasure meeting Kathy and learning about this tremendous resource. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the wonderful Dave Hagburg, Kathy’s husband. I have not had
the pleasure of meeting him yet, but he blogs at Man in an Apron and his love for food and local fare knocks me out. We must write about him in the future. The great state of New Jersey, my home, is a better place with the Hagburg family in it.

Saturday, February 4, 2012


We asked. You delivered. As the Boys in Blue hit the field this weekend, here’s what
you tweeted about all week. Had a blast chatting with you all and tomorrow night, we
all in for some great football.  Check out all the links and the cool pics! Thanks to all who participated #GOGIANTS

Love the pumps! Popular aviatar all over Facebook and Twitter
Thanks for sharing Gia!

How is everyone today? GO GIANTS!! @NJgreats @kathleenhagburg @dhagburg @Giaskincare

Michelle of Baskets and Beyond rocking the Big Blue Support!

dhagburg Dave Hagburg

@basketcase1993 @NJgreats @KathleenHagburg @Giaskincare Ready 4 the Big Blue Train to roll!

basketcase1993 Baskets-n-Beyond

Only 2 more day until Big Blue destroys NE @NJgreats @dhagburg @KathleenHagburg @Giaskincare

KathleenHagburg Kathleen Hagburg

The entire Hagburg family long time Jersey residents and authors of Getting IntoThe Zone
read all about them here this week! 

@jjauthor Janie Johnson

Thank you! You guys are the best! Go Giants! Make my husband a happy man! Janie @NJgreats @seanhannity

Yep, you read it here author Janie Johnson of  Please Dont take My Lemonade Stand & Obama 2012 Slogans Rewritten, avenger of all things captialism tweeting the awesome Sean Hannity.

ya mean this big hair  @chickenfoup @lorisica say what u want about big hair IT made it to 86 GIANTS super celebration

 Gotta love this picture. All I need to say here.

EVERY HALF TIME SHOW EVER! @njdotcom Fans, fill in the blank: The Giants are better than ________________. #nyg #BetterThanPats
TY NJDOTCOM  we are fans!

ChadLombardi chad lombardi
Defense wins championships #GOGIANTS

We couldn't agree more Chad! Thanks 
Life time Giants fan right here.

 neen0512 Jeannine Cavalier

Neen0512 Jeannine Cavalier

Janeen YOU my friend are a super fan!

Sunday, January 29, 2012



The first time I saw “Ficklets” on twitter, I had to find out what they were. I found out, they are not only fun to say, but fun to wear.Ficklets are charms for eyeglasses, invented by Ros Guerrero.  Inspired by her daughter Gem, one morning Ros looked across the breakfast bar counter at her, and the only part of her face she could see were her eyeglasses. She thought, those frames need some jazzing up. The idea for Ficklets was born.

Ros describes herself as a “serial entrenpreneur”. After spending 10 years in both retail and wholesale in the European luxury business, she and husband Roy became parents to Gem. They learned early on that she was born with a disability and starting their own business would be the best option for the family. For almost 7 years, Ros experienced commercial and residential investing, window treatment design and even was partners in a nail salon. Ficklets was the “a-ha” moment she was searching for.  After extensive market research, and a final prototype, they concluded that there was no concept like Ficklets in the market place. Her confirmation came when Gem wore them to school and came home with a note from the teacher saying her eyeglass charms got tons of attention from students and staff. 

Now almost 5 years later, some creative brand building and social media networking, Ficklets has been featured in several top publications and have two major distributors in the optical industry. Ros is gifted in her social media talents and connects regularly with like minded entrepreneurs who like her, are passionate about what they do. She knows the value of social media to growing her business faster, easier and much more affordable. I am moved by her passion for her family. She and Roy have watched Gem grow to be a thriving teen, balance precious family time along with the demands of the business and still find time to engage and encourage many in the twitter stream.

 Ficklets is NJGreats first ever “Across the Border” greats post, I was honored that Ros would take some time to share her story with me. Please visit and like her facebook page. My favorite are the flip flops. And look for more Across the Border Greats in the future. I always say, Twitter brings the world closer. This is a great example as I don’t look at Ros as just a fellow entrepreneur, she is a friend.
"A fun, fashionable, fresh twist to eyeglasses"

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This is the first installment of our Across The Border Greats series. Ros is so special and Ficklets caught my eye immediately. We here at NJGreats recognize the importance of reaching across the borders to entrepreneurs everywhere and always share greatness where it blooms. Not to mention, Arizona is a pretty cool place to be.