Grounded in Greek

Grounded in Greek

Greeks share stories of the people and experiences that have grounded them in who they are today. Join Brigette on this journey to learn more about the Greek heritage and to find shared meaning in the stories told, whether you're Greek or not.

Episodes

January 29, 2023 36 min

Brianna Koucos Midgley is the author of Yiayia's Kitchen Children's Book Series. Her and Brigette talk about the process of writing a children’s book as well as the challenges of finishing projects that mean so much to us. They also discuss facing criticisms and Brianna shares how she’s grown through it all by remaining authentic to herself. 

Find her books, gift items, blog, and social media links at: yiayiaskitchenchildren...

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Libby Nicholaou is a certified yoga and meditation teacher. She and Brigette talk about the benefits of yoga and meditation, especially during stressful times and in recovering from traumatic brain injuries. Libby shares how yoga and meditation have helped her connect with her Greek ancestors and the steps she’s taken to learn more about her heritage. 

Resources referenced in this episode:

Website: https://www.libbynicholaou.com

Free ...

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November 27, 2022 33 min

Peter Scobas is a data scientist, writer, and most importantly the host’s younger brother! They chat about growing up Greek, the dynamics of their family, sibling memories, and the growth in their relationship as well as their personal growth through the years. November 27th is Peter’s birthday, so Brigette saved this episode slot just for him.

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November 13, 2022 31 min

Theodore Pitsios is an author of 3 fiction books about Greek immigrants including, Bellmaker’s House, Searching for Ithaka, and his newest novel, Walking in the Light. As an immigrant himself, he shares where his inspiration is from, what sparked his writing, what his process is and what’s next (memoirs). You can find out more at theodorepitsios.com.

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George Stroumboulis is the co-founder of a custom lighting company, Ideoli Group and the podcast host of “Invigorate Your Business with George Stroumboulis.” George and Brigette talk podcasting, starting a business, the lighting industry, and what embarrassed them growing up that they now think is beautiful.

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Social Media: www.instagram.com/...

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Konstantine “Dean” Karnazes is an ultramarathoner, speaker, best-selling author, and entrepreneur, as well the “Top 100 Most Influential People in the World” according to TIME magazine. He’s run 50 marathons, in all 50 US states, in 50 consecutive days and he’s run 350 continuous miles. The host and him discuss snippets from his book, The Road to Sparta: Reliving the Ancient Battle and Epic Run That Inspired the World's Greates...

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Presbytera Maria Koulianos, St. Raphael School's Principal and Scholé Academy's Lower School Academic Dean, is a delight, her laugh is infectious, and her stories are insightful. She discusses how her vocation as an educator was sparked from a young age and the host and her reminisce on impactful educators, both the positive and challenging ones in their lives. She also shares what the role of Presbytera means to her, inclu...

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Kosta Sakellariou is a radiological technologist at a major healthcare system in the East Bay. The host geeks out with him on anatomy and Kosta shares insights into the field he’s been in for the past 14 years, CT scans, and radiation safety. He discusses how his Greek upbringing impacts his approach to work and how the Greek language aided him in studying the medical terms in school.

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Elizabeth Chiarel and Maria Diamond are a mother-daughter duo who started and grew a Greek ceramics importing business, So Blue Greek Ceramics and Gifts. They discuss starting a business pre-mass-Internet usage, what’s involved in sourcing products, how they’ve split up their roles, and the joys of all the Greek connections they’ve formed. Their business has allowed those across the world to treasure Greek artists’ creations.

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Julie Karatzis founded Cartoules Press, a letterpress and design studio in 2010 after she couldn’t find the right bilingual wedding invitations that worked for her and her husband’s wedding. It morphed into her full-time business today. We talk about that process, including the joys and challenges she faced, what inspires her designs, and the steps she takes to deliver fresh ideas. 

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Father Konstantinos Koutroubas was ordained a priest a couple years ago and is the Presiding Priest at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. Father Konstantinos shares his path into the clergy, his experience in sharing the joys and hurdles of his parishioners, if chanting in front of people makes him nervous, and what inspires him to write sermons. Since this episode launches on Greek Orthodox Easter, he a...

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Amber Theoharis has been in sports broadcasting for over 20 years at places like the NFL Network and Fox Sports, winning herself an Emmy along the way. She talks about how lately she’s been focusing a lot more on storytelling and producing, with HBO’s “The Weight of Gold” documentary under her belt. Amber and Brigette also discuss growing up in households with mothers who are not Greek and what that dynamic was like, in addition to...

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Thanasi Papoulias is the founder of the popular Greek meme Instagram account, “Excuse Me, Are You Greek?” and the apparel line, “Definitely Greek.” He talks about growing up with a mom who instilled the importance of Hellenic culture into him, down to prioritizing Greek dance over soccer. He shares why he started the account, what meme riled up some of his 84K followers, and which posts have made him proud.

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Johnny Livanos is the founder of Stray Dog Wild Gin. As a half-Greek, half-Italian, he knows Americans are familiar with Italian food and wines but wants to help make the Greek culture and its food and drinks even more alive and well-known in America. He describes his Greek-sourced gin ingredients, the story behind the gin’s name, why gin, and the experience that guided him to this path. Learn where to find this San Francisco World...

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Three guests share their part in a journey that involves reuniting with family in Greece.

Gonda Van Steen is a researcher, author, and the Koraes Chair of Modern Greek and Byzantine History, Language, and Literature at King’s College in London. In this episode she explains a piece of Greece’s history that is not super well-known. For the past ten years she has been researching the adoptions of thousands of Greek-born children sent t...

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Maria Zira, the host’s cousin from Greece, shares the effort and emotions that went into starting her own accounting firm, Sigma Accounting, in Arta, Greece. She talks about what inspired her to go into accounting and her goals for the company. Brigette and her also reminisce on the first time they met in-person.

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Ancient Greek high school teacher, Elodie Kabarakis shares her passion for the culture and why she created a non-profit, Apostrophos (www.apostrophos.org), all about educating people around Ancient Greek history. She excitedly talks mythology, language, and important individuals and works in history, including how she likes to make those topics digestible for students and adults in classrooms, conferences, and Zoom sessions. Her lo...

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Opera singer (Soprano) and Doctor of Musical Arts, Michele Patzakis talks about how she discovered her musical soul at a young age and blended her experience and passion for music with research in Vocal Arts Medicine. She discusses where technology is today in understanding vocal folds and how opera differs from other genres of music. Her successful training and career led to her performing at places like the New York City Opera an...

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Executive chef, Christos Bisiotis is passionate about bringing Greeks back to their roots. He talks about what’s been lost over the years, the stress of the kitchen, key ingredients from Greece and his plans for opening a restaurant to honor his grandmother. His culinary background is full of noteworthy experiences including cooking at and launching high-end restaurants, receiving an invitation to be the first Greek American chef t...

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George Scobas and Georgia Kandris, the host's dad and aunt, are siblings with different upbringings but a shared love of family. And yes, they talk about their similar names and how important names are in the Greek culture. This brother and sister also discuss their strict and religious childhoods, with immigrant parents who prioritized a hard work ethic, an education, and a respect for others, all of which grounded them in who...

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