By Barbara Reich
Author of Secrets of an Organized Mom
As summer draws to a close, busy moms have one thing on the brain: back to school. From doctor's appointments and buying new clothes to school supply shopping and trips to the grocery store, your schedule is jam-packed. This season, make prepping for your special student's first day a cinch by streamlining your schedule and getting rid of last year's mess with easy solutions.
Re-establish your children's bedtime and mealtime routines at least one week before school starts. Include any activities that were suspended during the summer such as pre-bedtime reading and household chores.
Sort through old clothes. Take some time to go through your children's closets to see what clothes still fit them from last year and which clothes they can share with their siblings as hand me downs. This way you can plan accordingly when going back to school shopping and not purchase things that you do not need.
Stock up on school supplies. Certain
- Tips on Healthy Living | Author Blog Posts – Tue, Sep 3, 2013 12:40 PM EDT
By Barbara ReichRead More »from 8 Essential Ways to Prepare a Back-to-School Routine
Yogurt.You've probably heard by now that the cultures and probiotics in yogurt are great for digestion. But did you know that there is an even better way to get those good bacteria? Kefir, yogurt's lesser-known cousin, is a milk culture made by fermenting milk. The fermentation process creates enzymes and chemicals that aid in digestion. Kefir "grains" - which are actually not grains but rather yeast and bacteria that cling to milk proteins and complex sugars. Kefir comes frozen, in drink form and in a yogurt-like consistency to be eaten with a spoon. It can be used in everything from cake recipes to pancake mix to Kefir smoothies!Read More »from Is Kefir the New Yogurt?
Where did Kefir come From?
Originally eaten by tribes in the northern Caucasus Mountains, Kefir used to be a well-kept secret. The grains were even considered part of a family's wealth and were passed on from generation to generation. They were believed to have divine healing powers. The health benefits of kefir were first studied scientifically at the end of
- Plated | Author Blog Posts – Fri, Aug 30, 2013 4:43 PM EDT
Manhattan Clam Chowder
With the weather cooling down we are starting to pull out our favorite recipes for soup. This chowder was one of our first Plated recipes and we are happy to bring it back. It's an easy recipe that pairs well with a melty grilled sandwich or a light salad. This is a great make ahead meal - you can even freeze it and have it ready to pull out when you don't feel like cooking from home.
Manhattan Clam Chowder Recipe
Cook Time: 35 minutes
- 2 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 rib celery, sliced
- ½ green bell pepper, chopped
- 6 ounce bottle of clam juice
- 1 large potato, such as Yukon Gold, chopped
- 15 ounce can stewed tomatoes, chopped with liquid reserved
- 2 6-ounce cans chopped clams
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Disney Spoonful | Author Blog Posts – Fri, Aug 30, 2013 12:53 PM EDT
These are perfect for back to school hairstyles!Everyone is wearing these hair ties! You can find them all over the place, but I want to show you how to make your own at a fraction of the cost!Read More »from Knot Your Average Hairstyle! DIY Trendy Elastic Hair Ties
Fold Over Elastic (Craft stores have it in all sorts of colors and patterns.)
Clear Nail Polish
Related: 15 easy-to-make hair accessories for your daughter's new 'do
1. Start with fold over elastic that is 5/8" wide. you can find black, white and tan at any sewing store, but if you want it with patterns on it like I have here, you should check your local craft store or purchase it online.
2. Measure out 9" of the elastic. When you are cutting, be sure to cut your edges at a diagonal.
3. Seal the ends of your elastic with clear fingernail polish.
4. Fold your elastic in half as shown here.
5. Tie a knot in the end of your elastic and you've made an adorable pony tail holder.
6.If you make a few of them, you can display them on cardstock and give them as gifts!
- By Holly Homer
For 10 Disney-inspired nail designs
Jealous of those women who are perfect without a drop of makeup? Here are three easy ways to get that flawless, natural look from Jennifer L. Scott, author of Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris.Read More »from How to Get the 'No-Makeup' Makeup Look
Le No-Makeup Look
The following are my three favorite variations that I observed while living in Paris.
This look is very subtle. It includes a light foundation to even out the skin (either powder or tinted moisturizer), blush, mascara, and a neutral lip color. It is just enough to give you a pretty, professional polish but also looks completely natural. This takes almost no time to apply and is a great look for every day-for when you just want to feel pulled together. The au naturel look is perfect for professional endeavors like job interviews as well as quotidian adventures like running errands.
This variation features a defined eye and neutral lip. It uses the same items as the au naturel look but adds my favorite makeup
- DietsInReview | Author Blog Posts – Thu, Aug 29, 2013 2:24 PM EDT
By Patrick Moore, DietsInReview.com
The dog days of summer may be over, but there's still plenty of time left to sip summery cocktails and soak up a patio before the leaves begin to fall. With Labor Day being the unofficial closing of the summer season, we want to help you celebrate with a frozen bang.
Sangria is a warm weather staple; the fruity wine-based libation looks gorgeous in a glass and is, relatively speaking, a "healthier" cocktail. Traditional sangria is a combination of wine, other liqueurs, and marinated with slices of fruit for an extended period of time. While that's a rewarding process to undertake if you've got some time on your hands, our Talenti Frozen Sangria Swirl is a fast and delicious recipe that will knock you and your guest's socks off. At around 225 calories per one-cup serving, well, just thank us later.
If you haven't tried Talenti's sorbetto, remove yourself from the rock you've been living under. Combining the elements of Italian gelato andRead More »from The Frozen Sangria Swirl Recipe You've Waited for All Summer
Fall fashion 2013 dos and don'ts.
Do: Wear a sleeveless top
This is great news for the sleeveless stunner you bought for the dog days. The key to shirts sans sleeves in autumn is all about the structured blazer. Find a school-boy blazer in black, gray or navy to slip over your top. Add jeans or work-appropriate pants and driving moccasins or loafers and your sleeveless top will sing. Sleeveless tops are an ideal work-to-evening transition piece for days you can't run home and change.
Don't: Wear sandals
This is a no-brainer, right? Although it still may be warm by October, sandals are not OK. Say goodbye to your espadrilles, wedges and flip-flops and slip your toes into more weather appropriate footwear.
Do: Wear shorts
Not so fast! By shorts, I'm not talking about your denim daisy-dukes. Instead gravitate toward shorts in heavier materials like wool or tweed and in darker colors like mulberry, gray or brown. Add chunky knit tights and ankle booties, plus a top and jacket and your shorts won't look out of place thisRead More »from 10 Fashion Dos and Don'ts for Fall 2013
- Tips on Healthy Living | Author Blog Posts – Tue, Aug 27, 2013 9:50 AM EDT
By Carolyn Dalgliesh
Author of The Sensory Child Gets Organized
One of the most common trouble times for all families is the morning rush. Many kids are overwhelmed and easily frustrated at the prospect of getting out the door on time, and parents can quickly get overwhelmed and exasperated. Not a great way to start the day! These triggers can be heightened when a child has special needs, such as with my family.
My son has sensory processing disorder, so when there is a time-pressure element (as there always is with the morning rush), he's on edge right off the bat. In addition, if your child is on any sort of daily medication that takes time to enter the system or that wears off over time, the early-morning period may be when a child is functioning without medicinal support and is more susceptible to frustration, distraction, hyperfocus, and rigidity. Whether your child has any special challenges or not, there are many ways to use structure and routing to streamline theRead More »from 3 Stress-free Ways to Get Your Kid Out the Door on Time, Every Morning
- Hello Giggles | Author Blog Posts – Mon, Aug 26, 2013 6:31 PM EDT
Classic literature can be difficult to understand.
Reading a book from the 18th or 19th century is kind of like reading a handwritten, entirely cursive note from your grandmother in that, unless you have experience with such material, you will only understand 60% of the language used. Considering that it's physically impossible for me to make it through any old book without an online dictionary open on my computer screen, I think it's safe to say that there are some words used in classic literature that are not entirely common or have fallen out of use completely. For your convenience, I've compiled a list of some of the more obscure classic lit terms (or ones that are used less frequently today) because I feel selfish enjoying them all by myself:
Mackintosh/Macintosh (n.): waterproof raincoat
Can you believe Mac computers were invented in 1824? I guess Steve Jobs was older than we all thought… I'm kidding, of course. (To the one person that laughed at that joke, thank you.) Mackintosh refers to a type of waterproof raincoatRead More »from 10 Classic Literature Terms that Are No Longer Used (For the Most Part)
- Disney Spoonful | Author Blog Posts – Mon, Aug 26, 2013 4:41 PM EDT
There is no better way to celebrate Macaulay Culkin's birthday than with an ice cream sundae like the one in Home Alone. Did you know you can make your own Marshmallow Fluff -- for the ultimate Marshmallow Treat Sundae? It's sooo good, too! Nothing store-bought even compares. Follow this easy recipe for your own Marshmallow Fluff, add crispy rice cereal, and other sundae toppings, and voila! The ultimate Marshmallow Treat Sundae!Read More »from It's Macaulay Culkin's Birthday! Celebrate with This "Home Alone" Treat!
3/4 cup granulated Sugar plus 1/8 cup granulated Sugar
4 Egg Whites (you can use pasteurized eggs)
1/4 tsp Salt
1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
Crispy rice cereal
Your favorite sundae toppings
Related: 12 homemade ice cream recipes that rival Baskin-Robbins
1. First make a simple syrup: Stir 3/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup water in a small pan over medium-high heat.
2. Cook until the syrup reaches 240 degrees (115 Celsius), then set aside to cool. If the syrup gets too cold and hardens, reheat it on low to liquefy it
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