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Join the Conversation


Starting the Conversation: Planning Vacation Memories?

By Marianne Reid Anderson  Spring has sprung, so are you starting to plan your summer vacation? Are you going anywhere for spring break? Or is “Back Yard, USA” your destination this year? My husband and I are getting a new roof for our home so it looks like Back Yard, USA for us this summer. […]

Clean Green without Chemicals

Spring Cleaning

Spring Cleaning Tips: The “Green Way”

  Spring Cleaning Tips: The “Green Way” By: Paula Green              Spring has finally sprung, after the brutal winter so many of us are breathing a collective sigh of relief.  Now that winter is out of the way, it is time to tackle our “spring cleaning.”  Being that my last […]

Alexis Werner: Inspiring Teen Supports Troops


High School Senior Sprouts Support for the Military with “Seeds of Hope”

By: Paula Green             Eighteen year old, Alexis Werner of Etna is passionate about her support for the military.  The Shaler Area High School senior was recently named one of Pennsylvania’s top youth volunteers of 2014 by The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards.           Werner received this prestigious honor because she […]

Joy of Gardening

Sowing Spring

Sowing, Tending and Savoring Spring

By Ryan C. Meyer  Each season has its own appeal, its own possibilities. As winter draws to a close, the time for cold noses warming in the steam of hot chocolate gives way to a more inviting outdoors. A winter landscape is beautiful but the biting cold that accompanies it, is much less appealing. Spring […]


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By Marianne Reid Anderson Innovative learning is part of everyday life at Robert Morris University’s School of Education and Social Sciences. Throughout the school, future educators have access to all the latest technology, applications and methodologies in instructional technology. Complete with a state-of-the-art Assistive Devices Lab, students can learn, practice and integrate technology into the […]

Students from Vincentian Academy

By Marianne Reid Anderson Our feature on innovations in the classroom continues this month as we provide examples of the cool, fun and innovative technologies and summer programs that will be going on this summer. Get Fit Families offers a Get Fit Summer Camp Program. These summer camps provide excellent and innovative ways to keep your […]

By Marianne Reid Anderson In our January issue, we began highlighting the fascinating and innovative ways that the schools in our area are educating students.  Here, we continue to give examples of the ways new methodologies, inspirational programs and the use of technology are being incorporated into the classroom.  Agile Instruction and Management Solutions- offers […]

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By Stacie Sikora As a soon to be graduate of Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, PA, I can’t help but reminisce on my choices as a high school senior. Jarod Kintz once wrote, “College has given me the confidence I need to fail.” College is a time for students to learn to fall and pick […]

Image & Style

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5 common style mistakes- and how to fix them

By Kelly Smith     No one likes to admit that they’ve made a mistake, a fashion faux pas if you will, but sometimes, conceding is the best way to avoid a style snafu.   Take a look around the next time that you are in a crowded mall, event or other gathering place and chances are, […]


Dazzle on your big day: 5 tips for accessorizing your dress

  By Kelly Smith      So, you have finally found the dress of your dreams- it’s love at first sight.  Suddenly, your ever-so-helpful salesperson makes a beeline for their treasure trove of shiny baubles, wrist candy and statement pieces that I would only wear to a costume party.  The eager staff begins to overwhelm you […]

5 HOT Styling Tips for the Cold

By Kelly Smith      The weather outside is more than just frightful.  It’s downright freezing, subzero at times but there’s no need to sacrifice fashion for warmth.  There’s a trick to looking both cute and cozy that doesn’t involve overly puffy coats, bulky boots, or faux fur-lined, floppy ear hats that make you look like […]

By Kelly A. Smith

5 quick-fix beauty tips to start your day

By: Kelly A. Smith        Rise and shine fellow sleepy heads!  It’s time to jump start your day so, to make sure you start it on a high note, follow these beauty boosting habits that will be sure to keep you looking and feeling radiant  around the clock!  Get movin’!– A pre-dawn workout has its’ […]

Movers & Shakers


Saint Alphonsus Students Reach Out to Charitable Organizations During Catholic Schools Week

By: Paula Green              Every year, Catholic school students celebrate Catholic Schools Week during the last week of January.  This annual event dates back to 1974, when it was created as a joint project of the National Catholic Educational Association and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.            This year’s observance was held, Jan. […]

Local College Students Reach Out and Help Those Less Fortunate

  By: Paula Green- “Love is not patronizing and charity isn’t about pity, it is about love. Charity and love are the same — with charity you give love, so don’t just give money but reach out your hand instead.”                                                              -Mother Teresa         Recently, some local college students heeded […]

Oddo playing for Avonworth High School's Soccer Team

Thanna Oddo

By: Paula Green             Seventeen year old, Avonworth High School senior Thanna Oddo has taken advantage of her skillful athletic abilities.   At the young age of four, she was enrolled in a YMCA soccer program where she quickly found her niche.   Over the past 14 years, she has continued to achieve and has taken […]

Fit Families


The Worst Holiday Foods to Eat

 By:  Joella Baker For most of us, food is one of the center points of the holiday season.  It’s so tough to have the willpower to say no.  Worst of all, we always think that we will just have a small piece and it won’t be too bad.  Unfortunately, the holiday favorites are by far […]

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Summer, Time for Fun, Sun and Food

 by:  Joella Baker I love summer.  It’s easily my favorite time of the year.  Probably because it’s warm and I simply don’t enjoy being cold.  However, there are so many other reasons why I love this time of year.  I love being outside and I find it so much easier to be outside in the […]

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Forever in our Hearts…

By: Joella Baker I intended to write an article about women’s health for our May edition, but the recent tragedy in Boston encouraged me to change my article. As a long-time runner, coach and two-time Boston Marathon finisher, I’m heartbroken over this tragedy.  For those of us who run, running is our “happy place.”  It’s […]

See you at our upcoming events!


All That Glimmers Bridal Event

  You and members of your family, friends and wedding partyare cordially invited toPittsburgh’s Premier Wedding Show: All That Glimmers Bridal Event Saturday, March 15th11-3pmVIP starts at 10am Conveniently held at The Grand Room of the new Holy Trinity Center985 Providence Boulevard, Pittsburgh, Pa 15237(at the intersection of Babcock Boulevard and Cumberland Road) VIP Event […]


All That Glimmers Bridal Event

  You and members of your family, friends and wedding partyare cordially invited toPittsburgh’s Premier Wedding Show: All That Glimmers Bridal Event Saturday, March 15thConveniently held at The Grand Room of the new Holy Trinity Center985 Providence Boulevard, Pittsburgh, Pa 15237(at the intersection of Babcock Boulevard and Cumberland Road) VIP Event begins at 10:00 a.m. […]

Spotlight on Business

Weirton doctors

Business Spotlight: Weirton Medical Center is New Home To Top General Surgeons

Weirton Medical Center is pleased to welcome three of the region’s top general surgeons home!  James Valuska Jr, MD, Thomas Lheureau, MD and M. Lance Weaver, MD make up the all new Innovative Surgical Group at WMC.    The doctors have practiced in the Wexford and Cranberry areas for the past several years and for […]


Business Spotlight: Kids Plus Pediatrics and the Holidays

By: Marianne Reid Anderson  Kids Plus Pediatrics has been around for 30 years, with locations in Pleasant Hills and Squirrel Hill/Greenfield and now office in Cranberry/Seven Fields Located at 671 Castle Creek Drive, just off Route 228.The practice, is physician-owned, family-focused and almost all of the physicians have children. In a recent conversation with Dr. […]

Art of it All

“The Art of it All”

By: Paula Green            Reliable, skillful and detail-oriented are just a few of the qualities to look for when searching for a good seamstress.   They must also be able to visualize a finished product, which requires a solid imagination and plenty of creativity. Bessie Gillespie, owner of “The Art of it All”, knows that it is […]

Health & Wellness

Brain Health Across the Lifespan

By Dr. Paul Nussbaum- The human brain is the single most magnificent miracle ever designed in the history of the universe. Weighing two-to-four pounds, composed of nearly 60% fat, and demanding 25% of the blood from each heartbeat, the brain is the origin of our every thought, emotion, and movement.  It reflects our very identity! […]

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Family Fitness with NFL’s PLAY60 Program

By Marianne Reid Anderson If your New Year’s Resolution is to achieve fitness for the whole family, you may want to get involved with the NFL Play 60 program. NFL PLAY 60 is the National Football League’s campaign to encourage kids to be active for 60 minutes a day in order to help reverse the […]

Kettlebell Workout

Benefits of Functional Exercise – By Defined Fitness

So you’re ready to begin an exercise routine. But where do you start? This can be very confusing for many people due to the abundance of choices and conflicting information. In truth, anything is better than nothing, but with that being said, not all exercise is created equal. Most people who are thinking about starting […]

Just A Thought


Just a Thought—Viva la Difference

    By Janice Lane Palko During the Christmas holidays, my husband, 25 and 20-year-old sons and I went to see Les Misérable at the movie theater.  It was the only movie that all four of us had not seen so that’s why we chose it.  While I enjoyed it, I could tell after 10 […]

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Just a Thought: A Christmas Collage By Janice Lane Palko

This year I will celebrate my 53rd Christmas, and I guess I have enough years under my belt to wax a little nostalgic on Christmases past.  It has happened gradually, but Christmas has changed a lot over the decades.  When I was growing up in the 60s and 70s, the month of December was a […]



All Shook Up with Elvis Presley Trivia: Celebrating 60 years of “the King’s” music

By: Paula Green           He shook the hearts of many and was “the King of Rock and Roll.”   Elvis Aron Presley was a music legend.  He was born on Jan. 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Miss., to Gladys and Vernon Presley.  His twin brother Jessie Garon was stillborn, which left him to […]

Check out our Upcoming Special Issues

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Northern Connection’s 15th Annual Wedding Issue

Feature your business in Northern Connection Magazine’s upcoming WEDDING ISSUE! Email: northcon@consolidated.net for ad rates and more information! Space is limited! This issue will also be delivered at the All That Glimmers Bridal Event on March 15th, 2014. At The Grand Room at the Holy Trinity Center in the North Hillshosted byArista Catering and Event Planning!