Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Tips for a Great Party

 There are lots of outdoor parties and picnics Prthrown in the summer. Graduation,bridal showers,birthdays,anniversaries,Fourth of July and just plain old let's invite the friends over.      Here are some tips for you to throw a great party no matter what the occasion is:

*No need to worry about food spoiling. Take a little kid's swimming pool and fill it with ice. Set your bowls of food on top to help them stay cold.

*We used to freeze empty milk cartons for blocks of ice but using frozen water balloons would be much more fun and colorful!

*Having a bottle of hand sanitizer for your guests handy near the food is a good idea. Or...how about filling a drink jug with a spout for washing. Put a soap dispenser, paper towels and a trash for the used towels nearby.

*Guests about to arrive and you forgot to chill the wine? Use these 3 quick steps if you are short on time! 
1. Place bottle in wine bucket and fill with ice. 
2. Add two handfuls of salt (that’s the secret ingredient). 
3. Wait 6 minutes, serve and enjoy!

*Have your guests label and use the same glasses throughout your party. 

*You can buy a few inexpensive disposable cameras and let kids serve as official event photographers.

*Weather people are forecasting a heat wave? Buy a pack of inexpensive washcloths from a dollar store, roll each up and secure with a rubber band, then toss into a cooler of ice water for guests to grab. (The best cooling points are the neck and wrists, where large arteries run close to the skin.)

*Purchase inexpensive cups and straws to help keep the  little ones from spilling their drinks and attracting insects to the party.

*Pre-cut fruit such as watermelon into small slices and insert a popsicle stick into the rind. This will make eating it a little less messy.

     There you have it. Now you need to get family and /or friends together and PARTY!!!
Pin It!

Friday, May 27, 2016

Memorial Weekend--it's Not Just For Picnics

post signature
Pin It!

Friends are Like Flowers in the Garden of Life

Gail and her husband Dave

 A while back I came across a lovely gift book at a garage sale all about friends. It has pages to record memories, important dates, and attach photos. I thought this would be the perfect gift for my best friend,Gail. 
     Gail and I became fast friends as college roommates. We had similar backgrounds and were pursuing the same major-- education. Gail was a year ahead of me so she was a great source of which classes to take and which instructors to avoid. We roomed together for three years until she graduated. 
      Gail is a little taller than I am, 6'0 or as she likes to say 5"12! I was dating a fellow (who I later married) who was tall and Gail always asked if he didn't have a brother for her. As it turns out, he had a tall, good-looking cousin. My husband didn't want to introduce them though because he didn't think they would be a good match. As luck would have it, the girls went to a dance and the guys just happened to be there too. One thing led to another and now Gail is married to my husband's cousin! We knew we never wanted to lose touch! 
     We have been friends for over 30 years. We've been through good times and not so good times. Gail has always been there for me. I consider her one of my greatest blessings. I hope we both live long healthy lives (Gail found out this year that she had breast cancer but after radiation treatments is doing well.) and end up being spunky old ladies together. 
     Thinking about Gail made me think about my mother. She has had just the opposite experience. She doesn't have any good friends, much less a best friend. My mom came from a very large family and for the most part they were her friends. I feel bad that she has never had anyone her age to confide in, laugh with or just be herself. She told me once how much she envied my friendship with Gail. 
      So think about your best friend(s). When was the last time you let them know that you truly appreciated them? Don’t lose touch, you’ll lose so much! post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Monday, May 23, 2016

Is Your Skin Ready for Summer?

These tips will help your skin get a healthy glow in time for those upcoming sunny days -- and with results designed to last through Labor Day and beyond. 

Exfoliate to Get Rid of Dry, Dull Skin 
Experts say the best way to get your skin ready for summer is with regular exfoliation. This gets rid of dead, dry skin cells Use a washcloth, loofah or buff puff, Wet your entire body in the bath or shower. Apply exfoliating cleanser to your loofah or washcloth, and scrub, using gentle, circular motions. You should exfoliate no more than once a day or a couple of times a week. Get started before Memorial Day and keep the regimen up throughout summer. Added incentive: exfoliated skin will help self-tanners go on more smoothly, making them less likely to streak and prevent your glow from fading prematurely. 

Moisturize to Hydrate Skin 
After you exfoliate, moisturizing your skin is key. Use it after you exfoliate, shave, and shower. 

Apply Sunscreen 
Use Enough!   The most important thing you can do for your skin is sun protection so you never get a burn. How high a number of sun protection factor (SPF) you need depends on how fair you are. People with fairer skin, lighter hair, and lighter eyes often need stronger sun block than their darker counterparts. Everyone should wear a sunscreen with SPF of 15 or higher with a broad-spectrum agent that protects against UVA and UVB rays. Apply it generously. Put on enough to cover your entire body, no matter how much it takes. Apply it before you reach the beach or outdoors. Sunscreen takes 15 to 20 minutes to kick into high gear, so apply it before you leave the house. Reapply it frequently. Remember that it only lasts for about two hours. 

Shave Away Unwanted Hair 
A good shaving strategy also helps. Shave in the opposite direction from which hair grows. In places where hair grows in different directions and in hard-to-reach areas such as underarms and the bikini area, try pulling the skin slightly, making it more taut and easier to shave. You could also try waxing, Waxing lasts longer than shaving. But remember that when you go to rewax, you have to let hair grow to a minimal length first. 

Treat the Skin on Your Feet 
Don't forget your feet this summer. People often complain of dermatitis, peeling, or callous on their heels. Using a /pumice stone will help to get rid of some of that. Use after a bath or shower when feet are softened up. Make sure that your toenails are cut straight across.

If you follow these tips you should be ready to head into summer looking and feeling your best!
post signature
Pin It!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Five Minutes Away From Happiness

Is there such a thing as a happiness fix? I think so and I think you can get your "fix" in just a few minutes. Here are some things to try when you need to boost your spirits. 

 1. Blog. It can give you a place to journal about life, your family, whatever is important to you. You can also get a boost from positive comments that other people leave you. 

 2. Get outside and soak up the sun. (I know that I get very crabby when it is rainy or cloudy for too long.) Even standing in the sunlight coming in through a window can brighten your spirits. Sunlight also gives us Vitamin D which keeps serotonin levels high. (This is a feel-good hormone.)

 3.Exercise. Just being able to move your body and work up a sweat can make you feel better. Running is hard work but finishing a run puts me in a good mood. I know I've accomplished something good for my body.

 4.Listen to music. Your favorite tunes can make you feel happier right away! Music activates the part of our brain that's hardwired for pleasure. 

 5. Garden. It's hard to have your fingers in the dirt nurturing something and stay feeling blue. Studies have been done that show being around flowers can relieve stress and increase calmness. It works for me!

 6. Be generous. Once in awhile leave a bigger tip or pay for coffee for the person in line behind you. I tried the 29 Days of Giving Challenge where you had to give something away every day for 29 days. It made me feel good every time I gave something away. 

 7. Volunteer. There are nursing homes, shelters and other charitable organizations always looking for help. Knowing that you're helping others will make you feel good too. 

 8. Spend time with your kids, grandkids or the neighbor's kids. Experiencing little joys through the eyes of a child will cheer you instantly. 

 9. Pamper yourself. A new shade of nail polish, a good haircut, a new pair of earrings...little treats for yourself will definitely improve your mood. 

 10. Look at photos displayed in your home or in your photo albums. You can't help but smile when you look at your favorite people and remember the good times spent with them. I have photos in every room of my house!

 These are just a few ideas to bring about happiness. Which of these would work for you? (Can you tell I love taking photos of flowers and spending time with my grandchildren? These bring me so much happiness!) 

What's your favorite thing to do when you're feeling down? post signature
Pin It!

Treat Yourself to a Spa Experience at Home

   How often do you relax? Really relax? Relaxation is something you do, not something that just happens when you aren’t busy. It’s a gift you give yourself and it’s also a necessity of life. Here’s how to get spa-like pampering at home.

1. Choose just one room in your house where you can be alone and quiet. The bathroom is the usual choice, but it can be anywhere. Prepare your space ahead of time so you can relax during your spa time. Clean, declutter, and dust the space. It doesn’t have to be perfect; but your mind needs to be at peace, not looking around at reminders.  

2. Set yourself up with a pile of big, fluffy towels and a couple of washcloths. You'll want at least one extra large towel for your body and another towel for your hair. If your towels are looking a bit shabby, invest in a few new ones. There is nothing like a good, luxurious towel for your home spa experience. 

3. If you don't already have one, invest in a plush bathrobe and nice slippers. This is a one-time expense that will make you feel pampered each time you treat yourself to your at-home spa. 

4. Decide on a theme (relaxing or energizing, for example), then set the mood with music and lighting. Choose a tranquil or energizing CD, depending on the mood you wish to create. Light several aromatherapy candles in a scent such as lavender (for relaxation) or citrus (for rejuvenation.) When you set the right mood, you will intensify the effects of your other spa treatments. 

5. Put aside at least 20 or 30 minutes to fully enjoy your luxurious home spa. Fill the bath with hot water and turn on the shower for additional steam Add bubble bath, bath confetti, or aromatherapy bath salts for a softening effect. The bath salts help to cleanse and detoxify your body.

6. Turn off the overhead lights, light the candles and turn on the music. Wash your face with a warm face cloth and apply your facial mask. Then take off your robe and slip into your hot bath. While your facial mask is working, start with your exfoliating scrub or pumice and let yourself relax. The entire body should be scrubbed at least weekly. Exfoliation should be done in a circular motion, beginning with the feet and up the legs, then hands up the arms, down the back finally up the front to the heart. It is usually best to rinse with tepid or cool water after the scrub to further activate circulation.

8. When the time for your home spa has come to an end, rinse off the facial mask and dry off with your luxurious towels. Then take time to moisturize from head to toe. 

 9. Conclude your experience by wrapping yourself in your soft robe and enjoying a cup of your favorite relaxing or invigorating herbal tea, selected to compliment your homemade spa experience. Choose peppermint or citrus tea, for example, to end a relaxing home spa or select jasmine or chamomile tea for a relaxing home spa. 

Creating a home spa is so simple and affordable that you will have no excuse not to indulge at least once a week.  post signature
Pin It!

Friday, May 13, 2016

Get Rejuvenated for Summer

Here in Minnesota the weather has seem summer-like (a bit early for us!)  So I wanted to share top ways to rejuvenate, renew and refresh yourself just in time for summer. 

1)     Tub time - drink a cup of tea while soaking in a hot bath with your favorite fragrant bath soak. 

2)     Take a mini vacation in your head - visualize yourself on a warm, sandy beach soaking up the sun as you hear the waves crashing. 

3)     Make Some Daily Personal Time - take some time each day just for yourself, even if it's just 15-20 minutes. Meditate, sit quietly or say affirmations. Just 20 minutes will energize you and help you maintain a better frame of mind. 

 4)     Express gratitude - remind yourself of all the things you're thankful for: your family, friends, your home, sunshine and your work. Remember to say "thank you" to those who help you. 

5)     Perform small acts of kindness - Performing acts of kindness will help you to feel better about yourself too!

 6)     Remember to laugh - laughter can be great medicine. Watch a funny movie, make plans with your funniest friends, or just laugh out loud at nothing! (Look up the joke of the day on the internet.)

7)     Breathe deeply - after an especially stressful situation, take a few minutes to breathe deeply. Inhale and count to five and then exhale slowly. As you exhale imagine all your tension leaving your body. 

 8)     Permission to be you - Take a break from the image that you have of yourself and the image that you project. Just let yourself be whoever you feel like being in the moment. Give yourself permission to be you! 

9)     Eat a healthy lunch - instead of making do with eating fast food, eat something simple, healthy, colorful, fun, and exotic or with wild flavors and textures. Enjoy! 

10)  Host a gathering with girl friends - we saved the best way to renew yourself for last. How about getting together and doing facials or pedicures? post signature

I'm sure if you try some of these you will be ready for summer!
Pin It!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

It Must Be Spring!

      I have an acquaintance that doesn't shave her legs all winter. We know it must be spring when she announces that she's shaving again!  (Many women dread the return of summer, when their leg-shaving skills are put on display.) Here are some helpful shaving tips. 

 Step 1:
  Gently exfoliate your legs in a circular motion to get rid of any dead skin. Then rinse off. 

 Step 2:  
Create a lather of hair conditioner (or shower gel or shave cream) and smooth over a leg. Start at your ankle and work your way up to the top of your thigh so your leg is covered in conditioner or cream. 

 Step 3:
Prop your foot on ledge of tub or against the wall of the shower, so leg is bent and you can reach more easily . Begin shaving. Start at your ankle and slide the razor up to your knee with medium pressure (you don't need to press very hard). Rinse the razor off in between strokes. Shave against the hair growth to achieve the closest shave possible. 

Step 4:
  Repeat using long upward strokes until you have gone all the way around the lower part of your leg. 

Step 5:
  Now Shave the top of your thigh, making upward strokes. On the back of your thigh, glide your hand in various directions to feel which way the hair is going. Shave against the grain (in the opposite direction that the hair is growing). 

Step 6:  
Now carefully shave your knee area. This is the hardest part to get. Shave in various directions with knee bent, then straighten knee and carefully go over again. 

Step 7:
  Repeat with other leg.  

Step 8:
  After getting out of the shower, pat excess water from your legs but don't dry off completely. 
While legs are still somewhat moist, generously apply a lotion.  

Tips &Warnings:  Rinse your razor thoroughly to keep build up of residue which dulls the blade. Go slow and carefully to avoid nicks and cuts. If you wait until the end of a long shower, your skin will be a little more swollen, so you won't get as close a shave. If you shave when you first get in the shower, you won’t get as close a shave because the hair will be more coarse and more susceptible to razor burn. Never use a dull razor!post signature
Pin It!

Monday, May 9, 2016

Running on Red Dog Book Review

   Running on Red Dog Road and Other Perils of An Appalachian Childhood is an interesting read. The story is set in the 1940’s.The author, Drema Hall Berkheimer’s memoir of her childhood in West Virginia won first place in nonfiction in the 2010 West Virginia Writers competition. 

    The book starts with Drema’s account of how her father lost his life in the coal mine when she was just five months old. To make ends meet her mother travels to New York to find work. The author’s grandparents come to stay with her and her older sister. She has a brother that is deaf and lives at the West Virginia School for the Deaf and Blind. 

     Her Grandfather is a devout Pentecostal Minister. This colors her life with church revivals, “The Rules”, Grandmother’s belief that you shouldn’t ever draw attention to yourself and lots of prayer. However, once in awhile she has a chance to do some things like playing cards with her Methodist best friend-hoping her grandparents won’t find out. 

      There are stories about her encounters with gypsies, snake handlers, hobos and moonshiners. The stories are charming and keep you wanting to read more. She draws you in and you almost feel like you are right there with the family. I enjoyed reading it also for the historical background of the time around World War II. post signature
Pin It!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Skin Care for Kids

Our last post was for teens but we can't forget the little ones! A skin care regimen for kids is important to protect them from the sun and bugs, as well as to ensure they are properly cleaning and moisturizing their skin. (Some of this is just using common sense.)

Following are tips on skin care for kids: 

Sun Care 
Apply sunscreen daily to all children 6 months of age or older. Keep infants out of the sun. Use a sunscreen designed for kids - one that contains a sun blocker such as titanium oxide or zinc oxide. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen for older kids - one that protects against both UVA and UVB rays - with an SPF of 15 or higher. Apply sunscreen 30 minutes prior to exposure, then re-apply every 2 hours. Lead by example and be a role model for your kids by applying sunscreen to yourself to teach healthy habits.

Bug Protection 
Apply insect repellent to all children 12 months of age or older. (For babies it is recommended to spray a blanket.) If you are in an area with a high concentration of mosquitoes dress or pack appropriately. The best protection is from clothes, like long sleeves, pants, a hat and sunglasses. Extra clothing can also help protect against poison ivy and poison oak. 

Bath Time 
Use a fragrance-free, hypo-allergenic, cleanser. Limit your usage of bubble baths and bath products with fragrances and colors as these tend to dry out children's skin. Avoid scrubs and cleansers with exfoliants. These tend to dry and irritate children's skin. Apply a thick moisturizer just after bathing, to seal the remaining moisture into the skin for better hydration. 

Hand Washing 
Washing hands correctly will help protect against many bacteria and viruses. Start by washing hands in warm water for at least 15 seconds. Using soap, rub hands together vigorously, paying particular attention to the areas between your fingers and under your fingernails. Dry hands with a clean dry towel. If you're in a public restroom, use a paper towel to turn off the taps and open the door. 

Act quickly to reduce the severity of a bruise. Bruising is caused by broken blood vessels under the skin. Applying ice as soon as your child is injured can help reduce the bleeding and swelling. 

Don't put anything on a burn except cold water. Ointments and other lotions may increase your risk of infection. Also, leave the burn uncovered. This will help it to heal faster. 

Cuts and Scrapes
Most minor cuts and scrapes will quickly heal with proper care. But for those that won't stop bleeding, that have debris in the wound that you can't remove, or that are on the face, you should seek medical advice. (A little Witch Hazel poured on small bleeding wounds will make the bleeding stop.) 

Excerpts taken from an article by Hilary Basile.( she is a writer for) http://www.myguidesusa.com and from an article at skincareguide.com post signature
Pin It!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Skin Care Tips for Teens

Now that I have two granddaughters who are almost teenagers I thought I would put together some teen skin care tips. It's never too early to start thinking about the importance of a good skin care routine. 
     One of the most important things to remember about teen skin care is that what you put into your body is more important than anything you put on your face. The appearance and condition of your skin is also influenced by genetics, hormones, your lifestyle and your skin care routine. It's a good idea to start with the basics and experiment until you find the skin care products that suit you and your skin best. 

It's rare for teens to have dry skin, so usually the best cleansers are the oil-free cleansers.  Choose one that doesn't dry your skin out. Lather up, concentrating on the oily T-zone area, then rinse away with warm water. 

If you have normal or oily skin, use a toner.  Facial wipes are an easy and quick way to clean your skin in a pinch. 

Even oily skins need moisture, but in hot, humid weather you may wish to skip moisturizing in the morning and use an oil-free sunscreen instead. In the evening, choose a light moisturizing lotion, particularly in areas that tend to dry out, like your cheeks. If your skin is dry, use a moisturizer with a higher oil content at night— Products used on the face should generally be unscented. 

Pore-cleansing, exfoliating masks are a great skin care product for teens as they clean and purify open pores and rid the skin of dead skin cells.   

Taken from an article at Savvy-women-magazine.com post signature

I'm thinking that starting a good skin care regimen now for my granddaughters will keep their skin looking good for a very long time!
Pin It!


Related Posts with Thumbnails
Contact Me

Name *
Email *
Subject *
Message *