My Guest Slot on “Health & Wellness”

Published June 26, 2018 by Maryanne

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Above, left to right, Dennis Lords, Ryche Chlanda, Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta and Maryann Castello.

Last week I was honored to be a guest on Maryann Castello’s “Health & Wellness” show. Maryann was an awesome host. We spoke about my career, my three books (and upcoming book), music, health, and so much more! You might even hear your name mentioned!

The show was 1.5 hours long, but it went fast. Enjoy the You Tube video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VS3w8p-4nIk&feature=youtu.be

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist, author, and public speaker. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

The Four Types of Clients

Published June 22, 2018 by Maryanne
The Four Types of Clients You'll Encounter

By Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

This article originally appeared in the Verona Patch online on March 20, 2013. 

Bending over backward to keep each and every client is the biggest mistake small business owners make.

When you run your own business, having more clients doesn’t always mean more profit. In fact, some clients can be so detrimental to your business having them onboard can make you lose business.

The key to running a successful home based business is identifying which clients to keep and which to pass on. There is nothing wrong with having a “pecking order” when running your own business, putting the more desirable clients at the top.

  1. High Profit/Low Maintenance. These are obviously the clients you want to keep because they pay well and are easy to work with. In other words, a small business owner’s dream! They are organized. They are easy to communicate with. They pay on time. They utilize your talents to the best ability. There is a mutual trust and respect. They may even give you a Christmas present or bonus! If you can develop a great relationship with these clients and keep them, you are so ahead of the game as you’ll be making money almost effortlessly.
  2. High Profit/High Maintenance. Whether you choose to keep these clients or not is up to you. The high profit/high maintenance client may drive you up a wall. There may be drama, unexpected phone calls when you’re on the beach vacationing, a ton of stress, disorganization and so forth. But the pay will be well worth it. To me, high maintenance can be amusing if you keep your sense of humor. Unless high maintenance goes too far by crossing the line of respect, eating up all your spare time, making you cry or reach for a glass of vodka after working with such clients, I say “go for it.” After all, sometimes big money comes with a small price.
  3. Low Profit/Low Maintenance. Sometimes a client may come along who doesn’t have a large budget or is asking for a task that doesn’t require too much skill or effort so the pay is lower than usual. But I say to keep these clients on board because it’s easy income. And you never know when you’re going to hit a slow period. Also note that sometimes a low profit/low maintenance client can eventually become a high profit/low maintenance client. That happened to me a few times. I did such a great job at a low profit level, a client willingly increased my rate!
  4. Low Profit/High Maintenance. I’m not afraid to say these clients are the worst and should definitely not to be kept. They will expect you to jump through hoops while paying you peanuts. There will always be stress, tension, misunderstandings, frustration and possibly tears. The hours will add up and you’ll have nothing to show for it but aggravation. You may find yourself passing up work from other clients because you are so wrapped up in this nightmare of a project, which isn’t fair to you, your other clients or your business. Just say “no” and move on.

By immediately recognizing a low profit/high maintenance client you can let him or her down easily by saying that you are currently over-booked and can’t take on a new client at this time.

Or just be honest and tell them their rate is too low. But try to keep the working relationship positive, as you never know what can change in the future.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the proprietor of Pear Tree Enterprises (https://peartreeenterprises.wordpress.com/). She’s an award-winning journalist, book editor, ghost writer, blogger and more. She can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com or call 908-276-1514.

Anti-Bullying Talk at Montville High School

Published June 18, 2018 by Maryanne

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Left to right Anthony Sia, Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta, and Alus

Sunday, June 9, 2018, I was incredibly honored to speak on anti-bullying at Montville High School, Montville, New Jersey. I was invited by teacher Anthony Sia who started the Coalition for the Human Condition (https://www.facebook.com/Coalition-For-The-Human-Condition-209170233169424/) with Alus (https://www.alusofficial.com/).

I was up first, then followed by a powerful performance from Alus, and later, the incredible Montville School of Rock (https://www.facebook.com/msorrocks/).

Supported by my husband Dennis and some friends, I was happy to speak for the first time in front of a high school. Prior to that engagement, I’ve done mostly libraries and senior citizen groups. I didn’t have much time to get into how I was bullied as a child and teen (though I am writing a book about it!) but I did get to speak about teen spirit. And that the one most important thing we need in this world today is love.

I look forward to more speaking engagements with the Coalition for the Human Condition, spreading the good word of “love.”

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an author and award-winning journalist. She is available for speaking engagements. Will travel! For pricing and availability, email Maryanne at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Judging is Bullying

Published June 9, 2018 by Maryanne

Stop Judging

Tomorrow, June 10, 2018, 2 p.m. I’ll be speaking at Montville High School’s Amphitheater on the topic of ANTI-BULLYING for the Coalition for the Human Condition. I am officially a spokesperson and even off duty, I am on duty.

Yesterday, it broke my heart when I was shopping in a health food store that is located in a strip mall. The owner told me that 70 percent of his customers were livid that a dollar store is coming to the strip mall and that would bring (his words) “undesirables.”

I stood up to him and told him that people who look down on others and judge people are the REAL UNDESIRABLES! The only way we’re going to get anywhere on this planet is by LOVE and LOVE only!

One thing LOVE isn’t is turning your nose up on other people. It doesn’t make you look better, it makes you look worse. Everyone thinks it’s so cool to bash The Bible, but whether you believe or not, there are good stories — especially the ones about Jesus breaking bread with EVERYONE. The word “undesirable” should be in NO ONE’s vocabulary! JUDGING IS BULLYING!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist, author, and public motivational speaker. She is available for speaking events; will travel. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

The Raptor Trust’s Third Annual Community Day

Published June 4, 2018 by Maryanne

ZiziZizi, a female American Kestrel (photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta)

Note: The following article by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta originally appeared in New Jersey’s Long Hill Leader, June 1, 2018. 

The Raptor Trust’s Third Annual Community Day

By Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

The Raptor Trust, of Millington, New Jersey, recently held their Third Annual Community Day at Stirling Hotel, Stirling, New Jersey. The day was filled with fun and festivities, including live music from Ross Griswold and the Second Line, with special guests the Raccoon Ridge Ramblers. Booths from community partners and local environmental organizations were featured. There was also family games and activities, a tricky tray, a silent auction, and a 50/50 raffle. Food and drinks were provided by The Stirling Hotel. Proceeds from the event benefit The Raptor Trust.

Community partners included: Somerset County Parks Environmental Education Center; Friends of the Great Swamp, Woodlands Wildlife Refuge, Morris County Parks Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center, Delaware Valley Eagle Alliance, and Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ.

Christopher Soucy, executive director of The Raptor Trust, said, “People come from all over,” adding that The Raptor Trust is celebrating 35 years.

Educator Kate Matta was showing birds like Penny, a 9-year-old blind Eastern Screech Owl and Zizi, a female American Kestrel. Zizi was found in New York City as a baby. The people who found her fed her baby food, which was a mistake.

“They eat mice and insects,” said Matta. “So, she was not getting proper nutrition. Her growth is stunted.” However, since Zizi was raised around humans, she is totally unafraid of people according to Matta. She added, “Zizi doesn’t know how to hunt. She’s a ‘people bird.’ She’s done this event before. She had no problem with people looking at her and taking pictures.”

Melissa Anahory, a licensed wildlife rehabilitator at Woodlands Wildlife, was teaching children about Tan, an Eastern Box Turtle. “He likes people,” she said. “He doesn’t hide. He’s used to people.” She continued to explain to the kids that a turtle has the shell to hide in.

The Raptor Trust was named and established as a non-profit corporation in the state of New Jersey in 1982.

The next event presented by The Raptor Trust will be a Guided Tour of The Raptor Trust on Saturday, June 30, 2018, at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Registration is required. For more information, visit: theraptortrust.org, call 908-647-2353, or email: info@theraptortrust.org

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist and book editor/ghost writer. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Sunflower Painting

Published May 10, 2018 by Maryanne

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For a very long time I wanted to take a painting class. I had the opportunity to take a class tonight. This is what we made. I honestly felt mine was the worst one of the class, but I’m okay with that. It was relaxing and fun. I will try again in the near future!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an author and award-winning journalist. Her latest book, “The Gypsy Smiled” can be purchased on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9

West Orange Arts Council Event

Published May 5, 2018 by Maryanne

DSCF2086Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta and Carol Black-Lemon, artist

As a journalist, I’m usually covering stories on the weekend. Today was the first Saturday I had free in a long time. I looked up NJ Events and saw that the West Orange Arts Council was having a Mother’s Day Shopping Boutique event. For those in the area, it’s happening again tomorrow (Sunday, May 6, 2018) from 1 to 5 p.m. at 551 Valley Road, West Orange, New Jersey.

This event was so cool, I just had to blog about it! Check out all the links and maybe you can guess which artists I purchased from. It was a tough choice!

Carol Black-Lemon (www.blacklemonart.com) has original paintings, plus handmade jewelry.

Vivienne O’Neill (https://www.etsy.com/shop/vivienneoneill) has unique handmade fashion accessories, home furnishings, and all-natural beauty items, including natural soap made with goat’s milk.

JDenaro (https://shop.aboutfacejdenaro.com/) is a fashion designer who has unique t-shirts, pillows and much more.

Sheila N. Kibutu (http://www.shiiscollection.com/) has incredible jewelry.

DSCF2089Sheila N. Kibutu, jewelry artist

I hope you enjoyed checking out all the artist’s websites and remember to buy local whenever you can! ❤

For more information on the West Orange Arts Council, go here: http://www.woarts.org/

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an author and award-winning journalist. Her latest book, “The Gypsy Smiled” can be purchased on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9