Lexington Women Chefs "Women in World Cuisine" Dinner






I recently heard about a really cool event that's happening tomorrow night in Lexington, y'all.

The Lexington Women Chefs "Women in World Cuisine" Dinner consists of six courses, each prepared by a local female chef. The event promises an array of world cuisine, with a portion of each $50 ticket benefitting the

Children's Advocacy Center of the Bluegrass

, a nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing the trauma experienced by child victims of sexual abuse.

How fun is that? Good food, cooked by talented local female chefs, and raising funds for an incredibly important cause!

The dinner will be held tomorrow night, Tuesday July 22nd, at 6 p.m. at


, located at 841 Lane Allen Road. For reservations, call 859-797-8461.

Bluegrass Junior Woman's Club Poinsettias for a Purpose

Today, HerKentucky welcomes blogger Jessica K. Peace-Urgelles. Jessica is a runner, photographer, news journalist, blogger, and advocate.  She is  also the mother to a rambunctious little boy name Gabriel and his faithful sidekick, a French Bulldog named Escobar.  Jessica has written for several publications including her blog, Blog of a Bluegrass BelleAsk Miss A, and most recently The Mountain Advocate newspaper. Following a personal tragedy, Jessica became a passionate advocate for several causes including domestic violence and poverty.  She is now a board member for Bluegrass Junior Woman's Club,and a General Federation of Women's Clubs Champion for the United Nations Foundation Shot@Life campaign. When she isn't mothering, writing, or advocating, she can generally be found with a camera in her hand at her business, Jessica Urgelles Photography.  Today, Jessica will be sharing the BJWC's Poinsettias for a Purpose campaign with us. Thanks so much to Jessica for reaching out to HerKentucky! -- HCW

Every year many families "deck the halls," but what if your seasonal decorations could help support charitable projects in your community?  Bluegrass Junior Woman's Club in conjunction with Pemberton's Nursery are offering poinsettias, fresh wreathes, and garland.  A large portion of the proceeds will go to the Bluegrass Junior Woman's Club and the many projects we conduct in the community.  Bluegrass Children's Fund, Santa's Shoppers, along with partnership organizations such as Bluegrass Domestic Violence (now known as Greenhouse 17), Ronald McDonald House of the Bluegrass, Hope Center, Children's Advocacy Center, and many more local agencies benefit from the hard work of Bluegrass Junior Woman's Club.  We are unable to fulfill all of our commitments without the support of our community.  We ask that you consider purchasing your live and fresh holiday decorations from BJWC this year. Poinsettias are $13 each.

 In addition to the poinsettias, we have several greenery options:

  • 22” Mixed Noble Fir w/ Cones Wreath - $24
  • 20” Boxwood Wreath - $26
  • 75 Feet of White Pine Roping - $35

  • Orders will be placed on Wednesday, November 20 so any order will need to be received on the evening
    Tuesday, November 19. Please contact bjwc@twc.com or me directly.

    Your generosity allows us o contribute to and continue our partnerships with many other non-profit organizations in the Lexington, Kentucky community. Have you satisfied all your holiday decorating needs? You can still help us. We are asking for Santa's Shoppers sponsorships.
    Federated in 1970, Bluegrass Junior Woman’s Club (BJWC) is a non-profit organization made up of women who are committed to improving the quality of life for disadvantaged women, children, and families in central Kentucky through volunteerism and fundraising. During the 2011-12 club year, the BJWC donated over $16,800 and many volunteer hours to local charitable organizations such as the Children’s Advocacy Center, Ronald McDonald House, and the Bluegrass Domestic Violence Program.  Our hallmark project is Santa's Shoppers. The event aims to help selected children and their families have a happier holiday season. We generally have the privilege of shopping for approximately 25 students. BJWC purchases gifts for each participating child.  These are wrapped prior the event and handed out by Santa Claus. The children are allowed to shop for a new coat, shoes or boots, hats and gloves, pajamas, socks and underwear. The children are then allowed to purchase small gifts for each member of their household. The children are sent home with their new winter necessities, gifts, and a large box of grocery items. It is a very successul event due to a collaborative effort among the event chairs, membership, prospective members, volunteers, and school staff. We are each reminded of how truly blessed we are during the holiday season, and our club couldn't pull off the event without our fundraising efforts and generous donations from members of the community.

    Bluegrass Juniors cordially invites anyone interested in learning about membership to contact the club or to attend one of our meetings.  The next scheduled meeting is Tuesday, November 19th at 7pm at the Beaumont Centre Clubhouse in Lexington, Kentucky. We really enjoy guests, so always feel welcome to attend! Feel free to visit us on the web, Twitter, or Facebook!


    When you're a blogger, you get some really interesting emails from time to time. There's outright spam, weird promotions and some genuinely odd press releases. A week or two ago, I received an email from  a PR firm suggesting that HerKentucky readers would be interested in learning more about Movember.

    I have to say, my gut reaction was "Isn't that when guys don't shave for a month? I mean, it works for a few men, but it mainly just seems like an excuse to pull out the Thanksgiving pants, Joey Tribbiani- style."

    Then, I thought that it could be a fun piece to hear whether y'all like clean-shaven or scruffy guys. 

    Solely for the purpose of research, of course, we'd have to include some photos of our favorite Kentucky-born actors, like Johnny Depp, Josh Hopkins, and George Clooney. Just, you know, for illustration's sake. 

    As I started to read a little more about Movember, I learned that I could not have been more wrong. The movement serves to draw awareness to and raise funds for men's health issues, including mental health and male reproductive cancers. It hit home. A few Novembers ago, a close relative began treatment for prostate cancer. It was a scary time, and we could not have been more blessed with the outcome. But, that was a combination of good fortune and good medical care. It doesn't always work that way. 

    Enjoy the photos of George, Josh, and Johnny for a moment, then make sure the men in your life are receiving the medical screenings they need. Trust me when I say that early detection and aggressive treatment are the keys to survival. Consider a donation to the Movember movement, even if you can't handle a mustachioed holiday season...

    Are the men in your life celebrating Movember this year?

    Urban Outfitters and the Anchal Project

    If I had to sit down and make a list of the things that we love here at HerKentucky, the very top of the list would include Kentucky, quilts, pretty clothes, woman-owned businesses, and helping others. I am so excited about a recent collaboration between Urban Outfitters and a Louisville-based non-profit organization that combines all of these things and so much more!

    The Anchal Project is an organization headed by Louisville native and landscape architect Colleen Clines. The 501(c)(3) -- or not-for-profit -- group was founded to empower women who have been forced into India's sex trade by providing them with safe employment in the production of textiles.What started out as a small group of students passionate about designing change for oppressed women now touches the lives of women in 3 cities and employs over 60 artisans on a full-time basis.

    Image via the Anchal Project.

    Here's how the Anchal Project describes its mission
     Anchal celebrates the creative, nurturing essence represented in the anchal and harnesses it for women’s social and financial empowerment. Through design, craft, community-building and education, we help provide new economic realities for commercial sex workers in India. Our goal is to create the infrastructure for creative, income-generating initiatives to run sustainably with local leadership. We believe that by providing a fair living wage and educational workshops to these women in need, opportunities can be pursued that build confidence, increase self worth and inspire entire communities.
    Urban Outfitters recently announced the Anchal X Urban collection, a limited edition collaboration with the Anchal Project, which includes gorgeous home accessories and clothing.

    I am so in love with this quilt!

    And this one, too!

    You can check out the entire collection online at Urban Oufitters' website, and in select stores, including the Bardstown Road location.

    (Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links to the Urban Outfitters website; HerKentucky does receive a small commission for purchases made through clicks from this post. Independent of any potential financial gain, however, we fully endorse the mission of the Anchal Project.)

    Kentucky Domestic Violence Awareness Month

    Did you know that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Kentucky?

    Upon assigning this mission to the month, Governor Steve Beshear recently announced some sobering statistics:
    Domestic violence crosses all spectrums – no matter your race, religion, economic or social standing. Anyone can be affected, One-third of Kentucky women report being abused at least once during their lifetime, and it is our duty as public officials, citizens, friends and neighbors to reduce this outspread of violence. Please join us in bringing awareness to the scope of domestic abuse and support victims in your communities.
    One-third of Kentucky women report being abused at least once. That is a staggering, heart-breaking statistic.

    Governor and Mrs. Beshear have worked hard to bring awareness and change to this situation. For the past five years, Mrs. Beshear has helped KDVA and anti-domestic violence advocates sponsor Shop and Share Day, a one-day drive to gather goods and necessities for domestic violence shelters across Kentucky. Since 2008, the drive has raised more than $2 million in goods and monetary donations. 

    In addition to commemorating October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, state legislators also announced that they will support a new dating domestic violence bill during the upcoming 2014 General Assembly. “Once a national leader in domestic violence protection, Kentucky has fallen behind,” said Rep. John Tilley, chair of the House Judiciary Committee.  “The next step is to include dating couples under this umbrella of protection, something more than 40 other states already provide.  I am committed to doing all I can to make sure the Commonwealth is on that list.” 

    Kentucky is one of only four states that do not provide protection for dating violence victims. Research shows that young women between the ages of 20 to 24 are at greatest risk of intimate partner violence, and the state’s current protective order law does not protect victims of dating violence.

    The organization formerly known as the Bluegrass Domestic Violence Program recently re-branded itself as Greenhouse17. This organization brings social, legal, and housing services to help with crisis situations. Executive Director Darlene Thomas, 
    We’ve been aware for a long time of the disconnect between our name and our mission.We take a holistic approach to helping people not simply to survive a crisis, but to grow as human beings and move on to lead full and fulfilling lives.Our new name, GreenHouse17, gets to the heart of what we do – nurture lives damaged by intimate partner violence – in 17 Kentucky counties
    Greenhouse17 recently launched their 17 days/17 ways initiative, a way of bringing awareness of domestic violence to every Kentuckian with simple steps that we can all undertake. These aren't just an October mission; they're something we should all be doing every day. 

    TUESDAY 10/1: Dial 911 if you see or hear about intimate partner abuse.

    WEDNESDAY 10/2:Speak out. If you see or hear someone using abusive or controlling language, say “I don’t appreciate that,” and explain why it's unacceptable.

    THURSDAY 10/3: Reach out to someone you think might be experiencing intimate partner abuse. Listen, believe in and support this person. Give them our toll free crisis hotline number: 800-544-2022.

    FRIDAY 10/4:Add domestic violence to the list of crimes on your neighborhood watch list. 

    SATURDAY 10/5: Volunteer your time at GreenHouse17. There’s always a long list of things to be done.

    SUNDAY 10/6: Help your workplace or church develop a written policy regarding domestic violence if they don’t have one. Greenhouse17 can help. 

    MONDAY 10/ 7: Purchase the fresh flowers and produce grown on the Greenhouse17 farm.Call 859-233-0657 to order.

    TUESDAY 10/8:Invite educators to speak on domestic violence prevention at your school, church, civic group, or business. 

    WEDNESDAY 10/9: Like GreenHouse17 on Facebook and share the page with your friends.

    THURSDAY 10/10: Throw a GreenHouse party and ask guests to bring items to donate to our shelter.

    FRIDAY 10/11: Talk to the young adults in your life about healthy relationships. Help them recognize the signs of dating violence. 

    SATURDAY 10/12 Donate to GreenHouse17. Money, goods and supplies are always welcome. Donate gently used clothing and furniture in the name of Greenhouse17 to Goodwill or Habitat for Humanity. They’ll exchange these for vouchers so Greenhouse17 families can shop for what they need. 

    SUNDAY 10/13: Tell your state representatives you support protections for survivors of domestic violence. 

    MONDAY 10/14: Ask yourself honestly if your own behavior is truly violence-free. 

    TUESDAY 10/15:Write a letter to your local paper describing the problem of domestic violence in your community and suggest solutions like these. 

    WEDNESDAY 10/16: Adopt GreenHouse17 where you work so your co-workers are encouraged to donate money and allowed time off to volunteer. 

    THURSDAY 10/17: Believe that your voice and actions can make a difference. 

    Please, this month, educate yourself about domestic violence, and lend a hand in some small way. Contact your local legislator and let him or her know your concerns. There are a lot of Kentuckians who are truly suffering.

    Home of the Innocents Big Ol' Backyard BBQ

    This Saturday, Louisville's Home of the Innocents will host their 8th annual Big Ol’ Backyard BBQ. Proceeds from the event benefit the children and families served by Home of the Innocents.

    Home of the Innocents has been helping kids in crisis since 1880. The Home offers 84 distinct residential and community-based services to 3,900 vulnerable children and their families from throughout Kentucky and Southern Indiana. Home of the Innocents provides care to children who have been abused, abandoned, or neglected, medically fragile children, and children with autism and other behavioral disorders. The Home also  operates Open Arms Children’s Health – a one-stop full service pediatric medical practice offering integrated care, including medical, dental, hearing, vision, radiology, pharmacy, and behavioral health services. Home of the Innocents is a private, nonprofit agency licensed in Kentucky and Indiana, accredited by the Council on Accreditation, and has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. 

    If you ever have a chance to visit Home of the Innocents, you'll be simply amazed by the commitment this organize has to its residents. It is truly an amazing place, and this fundraising event sounds like an awesome way to lend support!

    The menu will include barbecued ribs grilled by John Cliff and JBS/Swift, barbecued chicken and sides prepared by Chef Laurent Geroli (Brown Hotel) and other local chefs, ice cream from Comfy Cow, gelato by Proof and other desserts from Kern’s Kitchen.

    Activities include a Bounce Town with inflatables and a Wild Wild Activity Zone which features arts and crafts, activities provided by the Kentucky Science Center, petting zoo and face painting. There's also a Family Face-Off with corn hole, ladder golf, basketball and other games for the whole family as well as live music by The Remedy, a BBQ Cook-off for professional and amateur teams.( Please contact 502-596-1025 for more information, and a Western wear costume contest for all ages.

    Admission cost is:
    Adults: $50
    Seniors, first responders, military, college students: $30
    Students (11-18): $20
    Youngins’ 10 & under: Free
    Reserved table of 8: $500

    You can purchase tickets online at www.homeoftheinnocents.org/bbq or by calling 502.596.1025.

    Sumptuous Southern Supper for Franklin County Women's Shelter

    If you find yourself in the Commonwealth's capital city next Monday evening, please consider stopping by the First United Methodist Church at 211 Washington Street for the Sumptuous Southern Supper, benefiting the Franklin County Women's Shelter. 
    Hosted by a group called the Brainy Bodacious Women, the dinner will feature pulled pork and chicken from Staxx's BBQ, rolls from O'Charley's, green beans from Melanie's Cafe, and dessert from Red Head Custom Cakes.  Each meal includes tea, lemonade or water. The $20 meal is sit-down or carry-out, and benefits the programs and services provided by the Shelter.

    In 2012, the Franklin County Women's Shelter completed 503 Intakes, representing 967 adults and children. 59 women and children lived at the Shelter in the TLC program, while 50 women and children lived at the Shelter  in the Emergency Shelter Program. That's a lot of assistance for an area as small as Franklin.County, y'all. Warmth and safety are basic rights we often take for granted, but there are so many women right here in the Commonwealth who desperately seek them for themselves and their kids. 
    If you'll be in Frankfort next week, please have some great barbecue for a great cause. If not, please consider donating your time and resources to your local women's shelter. Your morning latte budget or the shampoos you took home from your last hotel stay could help someone have a far better day. 
    To make reservations or to learn more about the Sumptuous Southern Supper, call 502-352-2843 or email fcwsvolunteer@gmail.com.