By Lauren Sherman
For style-minded undergrads, dorm room decor doesn't have to be a drag.
For many, heading off to college means freedom. But dorm rooms are often compared to jail cells, at least when it comes to design. Stiff single beds, clunky, oversized desks and too-tiny closets are common at many universities.
But with a little ingenuity, these small spaces can be transformed into stylish sanctuaries.
In Depth: Sophisticated Dorm Room Design
Of course, it takes some cash. College students and their parents are expected to spend $30.08 billion on dorm purchases in 2009, according to The National Retail Federation, a Washington, D.C.-based trade group. While that number is down by 3.7% from $31.26 billion in 2008, students will spend an average $618.12 on back-to-college goods, up almost $20 from last year's $599.38. (NRF says that there will be fewer college students this year than last, which explains why the average amount of money spent is higher than last year
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By Lauren ShermanRead More »from Sophisticated Dorm Room Design
By Krystle M. DavisRead More »from Celebrity Scholarships
So you think you can dance? Katie Holmes might pay for your college.
It started with a chance encounter. Francine Wunder, director of corporate and public affairs at Detroit-based Wayne State University, was dining at a local restaurant when she spotted pop star Kid Rock. They talked about the Made in Detroit clothing company he bought in 2005. Then an idea dawned on her. What if his business designed a T-shirt for Wayne State?
In Pictures: Celebrity-Sponsored Scholarships
"We were just kind of joking about it at first," she says. But the rocker liked the idea and agreed to donate the proceeds of a limited-edition T-shirt to a new scholarship fund for music students. The T-shirt went on sale in October 2008, and the school has already secured the $25,000 needed to start the fund. Applications should be available in the fall.
But what if you don't live in Detroit or aspire to work in the music industry? Luckily, thousands of other scholarships
Learning about being a working mom.Read More »from Here Comes My Baby
I've seen an ad in the pregnancy magazines that shows a smiling female executive behind a desk talking hands-free on the phone. Her breasts are hooked up to a high-tech pumping device.
Will that be me in a few months?
Probably not. I work in the middle of a crowded newsroom.
In Pictures: Prepare To Be A Working Mom
And let's face it, buying the right brand of breast pump will not allay all the anxieties I have about becoming a working mother. I don't know what to expect when our first child arrives any day now, or when I eventually go back to the job I love. My worries range from the practical--who will watch our baby, and how will I work through the sleep deprivation--to the silly--what will it be like asking my husband for money when my measly eight weeks of disability pay runs out? (For the record, he says I'm being ridiculous. His money is family money, earned to take care of all of us. But I know I'll find it strange not to earn
Gadgets and other technologies for our furry friends abound.
When billionaire Leona Helmsley passed away in 2007, she shocked many by willing $12 million to her Maltese dog, Trouble.
While it seems none have surpassed Helmsley in the amount bestowed on a pet, the average pet owner in the U.S. is not afraid to splurge on their Mr. Fluffles. According to the American Pet Products Association, total pet spending has nearly doubled in the past 10 years. In 2008, sales topped $43 billion, up from $41 billion in 2007; sales for 2009 are expected to reach $45 billion.
The association says every pet sales category is growing, including gadgets and other technologies. While sales figures aren't widely available for pet tech products, Amazon.com says this category has become quite popular on its site. "Amazon customers are showing considerable interest in pet-based technology. We are seeing strong sales in 2009," says Chris Nielsen, Amazon'sRead More »from Tech for your pet
Surprise! The world's most well-known white wine comes in a wide range of styles.Read More »from Chardonnays You Won't Hate
It's easy to swear off chardonnay. There are countless weak versions--each one as disappointing as the next--that giving it up for good is akin to forgoing rice cakes, tofu or egg whites.The grape is one of the most heavily planted varieties in the world (400,000 acres under vine), and Americans guzzled about 60 million 9-liter cases of chardonnay in 2008. But two-thirds of wine sales are at the wallet-friendly end of the spectrum (about $10), so it's reasonable to assume that the likes of mass-produced brands, such as Charles Shaw and Little Penguin, make up most of those 60 million cases--all brands that tend to taste alike and lack overt flavor.
In Depth: Chardonnays You Won't Hate
Spend a little more money and a lot more time experimenting, however, and you'll find that when it's made with some TLC, chardonnay comes in several different styles and flavors--and there's joy to be found in
Freelancers are their own bosses. But they are business-owners, too, and that means dealing with taxes.
Tim, a 28-year-old New Yorker, began his post-college career working as a freelance Web designer. Soon he was making good money and didn't see the need for a salaried job.Read More »from Money tips for freelancers
"I thought, 'What's the benefit? I'm my own boss, and I'm not hurting for jobs,'" he said. Moreover, he was still covered by his parents' health insurance.
That happy existence took a blow after Tim (who prefers not to use his full name due to embarrassment) visited H&R Block to file his income taxes. He brought the 1099 income statements from every job he worked. The tax preparer asked if he had paid quarterly estimated taxes. Tim didn't know what those were. Then he learned the hard way: He owed $8,000 in unpaid taxes from all those freelance jobs to the IRS.
In Pictures: Eight Money Tips For Freelancers
Welcome to the world of freelancing. It's a type of work well known to decades of
How to find the insurance policy that's right for you.Read More »from Cut your health-care costs
Whether they like it or not, a growing number of Americans will be taking into their own hands the task of insuring their health. That's the gist of a survey showing that nearly one in five employers plan to stop offering health benefits over the next three to five years, according Hewitt Associates, a global human resources consulting firm. Among employers who continue to offer benefits, doing so will mean grappling with a 9% increase in medical costs next year alone, as forecast by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
In Pictures: Eight Ways To Cut Your Health Care Costs
Whether it's now or some time in the future, there's a good chance that at some point you will face the need to insure yourself. Yet one-fourth of adults between the ages of 25 and 34 go without health insurance, because of costs or the sense that they don't need it.
No matter how young and healthy you are, consider health insurance a must. A single visit to a
Experts weigh in on eight benchmarks that are critical to conquer for healthy living.Read More »from Fitness Goals That Matter Most
When 58-year-old Larry Durstine was younger, he could run four miles in 20 minutes--an impressive pace given that only elite runners tend to average sub-four-minute miles. But these days Durstine, who knows a thing or two about fitness since he's chair of the department of exercise science at the University of South Carolina, has different goals.
"I used to get five to 10 miles in an hour each day, but my benchmarks have changed," Durstine says. Nowadays, however, he's satisfied to squeeze in whatever exercise, whenever he can.
In Depth: Fitness Goals That Matter Most
It's practical, and might even sound boring, but Durstine enjoys the challenge of finding ways to be active, whether that means waking up at 5:30 a.m. to run 2 miles, parking his car a mile from his campus office for the long walks or planning a 20-minute session of 300 sit-ups and 120 push-ups.
Regular activities like
Good help for the children is hard to find. The best costs a fortune.Read More »from Six-Figure Nannies
Don't call Autumn Backman a nanny. A lean, high-energy brunette, she speaks French, a bit of German, graduated magna cum laude from a respectable East Coast university and has lived in Vienna and Monte Carlo. "I'm more of a governess," she says.
With 15 years in the business, Backman's primary goal is to bring "a whole new level of adventure to the children's lives." That might mean heading to Central Park to find the "forest" where there are wild brambles, or hitting up the Museum of Natural History for a bit of imaginary time travel. "For them it's very exciting," she says. "My joy is to bring joy and play to the child." But there's also scheduling doctor's appointments and inculcating good manners, "It's about raising a good citizen," she says.
In Pictures: Platinum Nanny Jobs
Backman belongs to a special breed of domestic servants. An elite nanny today can't just be a passive grandma figure who keeps
These tendencies are derailing your best efforts at living better and longer.Read More »from Unhealthy Habits You Need To Ditch
We all have them: Those less-than-healthy or downright dangerous habits that can subtract years from our lives. Most of these harmful tendencies--like smoking and eating poorly--are well-known thanks to the constant finger-wagging of physicians and public-health officials. Others, like taking chances with safety and skipping immunizations, are less obvious.
While circumstance, low motivation or even lack of support can derail our best attempts at being healthy, there is hope: According to a recent study published in the American Journal of Medicine, a sizable percentage of people can successfully adopt a range of healthy activities or habits in middle age.
In Depth: Unhealthy Habits You Need To Ditch
The study looked at 15,708 adults between the ages of 45 and 64. More than 8% of the participants began eating at least five fruits and vegetables daily, exercised a minimum of 2.5 hours per week,