Elise Johnson

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Awards to the Community

2013 Cary Community Foundation Grant Awards Breakfast

2013 Cary Community Foundation Grant Awards Breakfast

Last Friday I attended the Cary Community Foundation 2013 Grants Awards Breakfast at the lovely Matthews House in downtown Cary.  The Matthews House is a client of Smith & Smith, CPA, and a very beautiful place for events of all kinds!   I joined the Cary Community Foundation Board earlier this year and it has been a fun opportunity and I’ve met some wonderful community leaders.  I helped serve on the Grants Committee this year and we had over 25 grant applications to read through and compare.  It was so hard…I wanted to give them ALL grant money!  I had tears in my eyes as I read through the grant applications.  We had $7,000 to give out to all of these worthy organizations.  

Susan, Elise and Becca

Susan, Elise and Becca

The grant awards were divided into different categories, which made it much easier to judge.  The Cary Community Foundation President, Carla Liberatore, hosted the Grants Awards Breakfast and opened the morning with a welcome.  Sheila Ogle of the Matthews House offered the invocation and then breakfast was served buffet style (and it was sooo yummy and healthy!)  Vice President, Laird Hepburn, gave out all of the grant checks and asked each recipient to speak briefly about their organization and how the money would be used to benefit the good of those in the Cary Community.  Once again, some of the stories that the grant recipients shared really brought tears to your eyes.  It is so rewarding to know that the money is being put to good use for those who really need an extra hand in life.  One of my favorite non-profits, The Corral, was the recipient of grant money that will be used towards after school educational supplies for the girls at The Corral. 

Join the Cary Community Foundation!

Join the Cary Community Foundation!

Another one of my favorite grant awards was given to Hospice of Wake County for a signature piece of art that will be put in the bereavement garden and will be focused on children and their healing needs.  The morning event was very special and I think everyone left the breakfast feeling blessed and uplifted.   Congrats to all of the grant award recipients!   I enjoyed seeing lots of friends and also would like to thank, Liz Cantino from VantageSouth Bank for joining me as my guest. 

Leading Ladies from the NC Community Foundation

Leading Ladies from the NC Community Foundation

I loved seeing my friend Elise Johnson and here is a cute picture of us with Cary Community Foundation Board member, Susan Balke (of DHW CPA).  Thanks to Lois Cozart, owner of My Girlfriend’s Closet in downtown Apex and downtown Cary for selecting this lovely dress by eci New York for me to wear to the grants awards breakfast.  I had several compliments on it!  Shop at My Girlfriend’s Closet and tell them you read about them in Beccablog.com and get 10% off your purchase!          

Our CPA firm in Cary is growing and we are currently welcoming new clients.  Please check out our website for more information  http://www.smithandsmithcpa.com  We are never too busy to help a small business owner with their accounting/tax needs.  We welcome referrals!

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Director of Marketing

Smith & Smith, CPA, P.C.

1150 Executive Circle, Suite 5

Cary, NC 27511

(919) 380-0600 phone

(919) 380-0919 fax

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Cooking with Elise and Supporting the Community!

Friends with Chef Elise

Last week got away from me (BIG TIME), so I am a few days behind with blogs, but hey, I’ll make it up this week!  Great stories and events coming your way, STAY TUNED!  So let’s start with the first with last Tuesday at the VERY FIRSTCooking Live with Chef Elise”.  This event was held at the lovely Matthew’s House in downtown Cary and featured Chef Elise cooking three different holiday appetizers and benefited Dorcas Ministries.

 

Matthew’s House

 

Now this concept is ‘new’ and really neat…you pay $15 and you get to attend a very nice event where Chef Elise is being taped while cooking up some delicious items, network and socialize with local citizens, all while supporting a local nonprofit agency!  What a great idea!  I attended with Alicia Angell (our newest member at Smith & Smith, CPA) and we had a great time!  I’m a big fan of Dorcas Ministries, I’ve been friends with Howard Manning (Executive Director) and Deidre Jersey (Capital Campaign Coordinator) for many years and I love supporting/shopping at Dorcas!

Alicia showing off the food

I’m also a HUGE fan of the Matthew’s House (client for Smith & Smith, CPA) and always being able to go their property for events.  Everyone who attended was asked to bring a non-perishable food item to help stock the pantry for clients in need of Dorcas Ministries.  It was so cool to see how much food was being donated!  Chef Elise was a huge delight to watch!  She laughed, made jokes, told stories, introduced her family and friends and of course…COOKED!  You could tell she was having a blast up there!  The event was completely SOLD OUT and they even had to turn people away!  This will become a monthly event and will only continue to get better and better! Do you want to know what Chef Elise cooked live for us?? (We got to sample the food and had a nice glass of wine too!)  The first item she cooked was a carrot-marbleized appetizer!

 

Cooking with Chef Elise

The Food Network had asked her to prepare an appetizer using carrots and that is what she came up with! It was served on a nice slice of Brie cheese and was soooooo good!  Her second item was quiche with asparagus (YUM) and the final menu item she whipped up was roasted red pepper hummus with a falafel!  There was a live band that added a lot of entertainment to whole night.  My favorite thing that Chef Elise said was “Most women want diamonds…but not me.  I tell my husband I want small kitchen appliances instead of diamonds!”

There was a short video clip that played and told about Dorcas Ministries and their mission.  I can see this event growing bigger and bigger and will be a monthly regular for my calendar!  Hope to see you there in January 2013!  And many thanks to My Girlfriend’s Closet boutique for the lovely deep purple Rebecca Taylor embellished silk top that I wore!  Lois Cozart, owner of My Gilfriend’s Closet in Apex and Cary, really knows how to pick the best clothing for women!

 

Our CPA firm in Cary is growing and we are currently welcoming new clients.  Please check out our website for more information  http://www.smithandsmithcpa.com  We are never too busy to help a small business owner with their accounting/tax needs.  We welcome referrals!

 

Follow my blog via email by clicking HERE  

“LIKE” us on Facebook HERE

Connect with me on LinkedIn HERE 

 

 

Director of Marketing

Smith & Smith, CPA, P.C.

1150 Executive Circle, Suite 5

Cary, NC 27511

(919) 380-0600 p

(919) 380-0919 f

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Laugh, Cry and COOK with Elise Johnson!

Shelli with Elise Johnson

 There are so many things that I love about October!  Cooler weather, leaves changing, fall festivals, opening the windows at home, Halloween candy (opps, yeah, not afraid to admit it!)…and now I’m going to add the Triangle Ladies Power Lunch from October 17th to that list!  This monthly luncheon is just so much fun!  I love getting to see many of my professional working women friends there, I love the location, I love the speakers, I love the networking and on and on…. The speaker yesterday was the totally adorable and oh-so-loveable, Chef Elise Johnson! (Carrie Peele was away at a business meeting, but Shelli Dallacqua did a great job running the show for her and introduced Elise Johnson!)  I met Chef Elise Johnson about a year ago and she’s just a doll…someone you never forget!  Elise is originally from Massachusetts and her background is 100% Portuguese.  The majority of her presentation yesterday was about her grandmother and the lessons of life she learned from her in the kitchen as a child.  Her topic was so heartwarming and truly touched many of the ladies in the audience.  Elise had a speech impediment as a child and thus spent a lot of time with her grandmother cooking in the kitchen, while the other kids were outside playing or at a friend’s house.  She shared the story of her grandmother arriving in the United States by boat, how she raised 10 kids and was a factory worker for 66 years!  She passed away when Elise was only 19 years old.  Elise talked about success and she held up a cooking apron that was her grandmothers, one she found in her house hanging on an old nail in the kitchen.  To anybody else, it was just an apron.  But to Elise, it represents a legacy.  Chef Elise Johnson is a Chief Spokesperson for BJ’s Wholesale Club, has a national TV cooking segments called “Cooking with Elise” and released her first cookbook in April 2012, “You Never Cook Alone”.  I love that she said she’s known as the “Portuguese Paula Dean”! 

 

Elise Johnson and Bill Cooper

 

Crazy enough as this world is, I ran into an ole’ friend from my college years at East Carolina University (GO PIRATES!)  His name is Bill Cooper and he happens to be the webguy for Elise Johnson!  He was at the luncheon yesterday and we recognized each other!  Bill was good friends with my sister, Karen.  Bill now lives in Raleigh has a company called CreativeWebJuice.com.  He provides clients with web development, graphic design, online platforms and print media solutions. He’s got some good talent!  It was fun seeing Bill and I enjoyed catching up on life with him!  Here is a picture of him working the cookbook sale table with Elise Johnson

 

Winner Winner!

 

 I had wonderful ladies at my Smith & Smith, CPA sponsor table: Sarah Thacker, Heather Swanner, Renee Groom, Judy Fourie, Karen Albright, Erin Cohen and Sharon Moe.  Sarah, Heather, and Erin were all lucky door prize winners!  Love the big CLINIQUE silver bag that Sarah won, best of all it was full of all kinds of CLINIQUE goodies (thanks to the wonderful ladies from Belk at Crabtree Valley Mall, that is you Jennifer Elkin!!!). 

Heather and Kendra

 

 

 Heather Swanner was kind enough to introduce me to one of her friends, Kendra Leonard, who is the owner of The Art of Style.  She has two stores, one in Brier Creek and the other in Cameron Village.  Here is a picture of Heather and Kendra.  Kendra is wearing a dress from her store! She is having a fashion show/fundraiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on Sunday, November 11th from 7-10pm at Embassy Suites in Brier Creek.  That will be a fun girl night!  I know that Heather was particularly moved by what Elise Johnson had to say with her talk about success and passion.  Both of these ladies enjoyed the luncheon!    

MGC in Cary & Apex dresses!!!!

 

 

I’d also like to mention another upcoming event that is next week, October 23rd.  It is the WomenNC & InterAct Jazzy Evening.  My good friend, Beth Dehghan of Village Cleaners is helping to promote and organize this evening event.  Tickets are still on sale and you can purchase them here.  I’ll be there along with Sarah Thacker.  I also had to get a picture with my amazing partner-in-crime…Rita Sellers of Outside Raleigh!  We were both wearing amazing dresses from My Girlfriend’s Closet!  My dress was an Eva Franco, navy blue with red embroidered stripes and Rita was wearing a beautiful Ann Taylor belted suit dress.  Have you been to My Girlfriend’s Closet lately? I’m heading that way tomorrow to see what new FALL stuff she has in!    Here’s to Cooking with Elise Johnson and a wonderful October Day!

 

Our CPA firm in Cary is growing and we are currently welcoming new clients.  Please check out our website for more information  http://www.smithandsmithcpa.com  We are never too busy to help a small business owner with their accounting/tax needs.  We welcome referrals! 

 

Follow my blog via email by clicking HERE  

“LIKE” us on Facebook HERE

Connect with me on LinkedIn HERE 

 

 

Director of Marketing

Smith & Smith, CPA, P.C.
1150 Executive Circle, Suite 5
Cary, NC 27511
(919) 380-0600 p
(919) 380-0919 f