Blog Posts by The_Stir

  • Violent video games make us better parents

    Did you hear that sound this morning? It was the sound of thousands of video game store clerks breathing a giant sigh of relief that they don't have to take on the role of parenting your kids because you're just too darn lazy. The Supreme Court has determined that states cannot ban the sales of violent video games to kids because they're protected under kids' right to free speech -- just like books.

    And as a parent, I couldn't be happier to see those games remain out there on the shelves. Blasphemy, I know! A mom of a 6-year-old just said she's happy the Supreme Court didn't yank those shoot 'em up, kill 'em, bang bang games away from those kiddos. But here's the thing.

    More from The Stir: Video Gaming Turns Good Kids Into Jerks

    I don't need the Supreme Court to take the violent video games away from my 6-year-old. I do it myself. We live in a gaming household, where my husband is dedicated to the likes of Fallout. But she's 6. I act like a parent, and I buy what is

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  • Learn to love your lady parts with this song (VIDEO)

    If you want better sex, one of the best ways to get there is to get to know your lady parts. For many women, the vagina is a gross place and they can't imagine why any man would dare put his hand down there, let alone his face or most intimate parts.

    This is why all we ladies need a little lesson in how to love our vaginas.

    More from The Stir: There's No Good Reason for Feeling 'Meh' in Marriage

    Lucky for us, there is just the song to help us on that path. Love your vaginawas created by Mooncup, a company that makes silicone menstrual cups. Last year they asked women to submit their favorite nicknames for their vaginas and now, they've released a song using them. The song is available via iTunes with the proceeds going to charity, but really, it's the message that matters.

    See below:

    Without getting to know your most intimate of parts, it is nearly impossible to really let loose and enjoy sex. There IS a reason your man is willing to go down there and put

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  • Walk a mile in these 5 super comfy high heeled sandals -- I did!

    Summertime is probably the most active of all seasons, but that doesn't mean you have to sacrifice comfort or style when it comes to your sandal choices -- not with so many "comfort" sandals on the market. While really comfortable, well-made shoes don't come at budget prices, your feet will seriously thank you for the investment in a pair of these.

    I road tested several pairs of sandals with a range of heel heights, and what follows are my picks of the best five pairs! My three requirements? Comfort, stylishness, and a heel of some sort (no flats!). Can't wait to show you what I found!

    More from The Stir: Longest Earrings Mankind Has Ever Seen

    I wrote to several shoemakers to see if they'd supply me with my choice of their stylish-looking sandals to road test -- because I would do that for YOU. I received several samples, walked them all about town and in my daily life, and I've narrowed down my favorites to share.

    5 Stylish & Comfortable High Heel Sandals -- Road

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  • Film director mom makes porn you'll want to see!

    After receiving a degree in psychology from Harvard University, filmmaker Jennifer Lyon Bell realized that what she really wanted to do was make erotic movies. Feeling shy about her desire to create pornography, she instead began working as a brand strategy consultant. That is, until she took a leap of faith, quit her job and went back to graduate school to study film theory.

    Since then she's been making erotic films for people who like film and started Blue Artichoke Films because she couldn't find movies that actually appealed to straight women. Her latest film, co-created with the artist and lingerie-designer Murielle Scherre, aka La Fille D'O, was shot in nearly real-time and shows the slow sex of a real-life couple. It's called Skin. Like. Sun.

    More from The Stir: 5 Household Items That Double as Sex Toys

    What Jennifer does is add a realness to her work -- it makes you feel like you can be the person in the film.

    She creates both fiction films and documentaries

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  • Nevermind burgers & soda -- here's what's really packing on pounds

    It may have been when I living in L.A. or from Gwyneth Paltrow that I first heard about the annoying diet in which you just completely give up "white foods." As in anything considered a simple carbohydrate, like white rice, white pasta, white flour, sugar, and of course, potatoes. Because I got to Weight Watchers Lifetime status in college by focusing on balanced, healthy eating overall, I believed that "no white foods" business was bunk, and I rolled my eyes at any mention of it. People who refuse to eat a whole category of foods were surely bound to rebel at some point and go hog wild on French fries and Funfetti cupcakes, right?

    More from The Stir: BSB Nick Carter Loses Weight, Looks Good For an Old Guy

    Now, though, I'm not so sure. New research says potatoes beat sugary drinks, unprocessed red meat, and processed meats (like hot dogs and bacon) in a list of foods associated with the biggest weight gain over time. Measly potatoes are worse than pop (or, if you're not from

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  • A refreshing frozen drink in every color of the rainbow

    There's something kind of silly about summer. Everyone wears brighter colors and flip-flops, we whoop and holler down water slides. And we drink frozen blended drinks -- blue Hawaiians, Mai Tais, Margaritas. Slurpees for grown-ups. Oh yeah, time to channel Isaac Washington, "your bartender" on the Love Boat.

    More from The Stir: 10 Yummiest Summer Drinks

    You're thinking, "Excellent idea, I'll pick up one of those mixes next time I'm at the liquor store." But that's not how Isaac would play it. Have you ever tried making one of these from scratch? It's ridiculously easy because the blender does all the work -- and you can really taste the difference.

    Some of these drinks call for simple sugar, which couldn't be easier to make. I'm serious, it's two ingredients and takes less than five minutes.

    1. Combine one cup of water with one cup of sugar in a small pot.

    2. Stir over medium-low heat until the sugar is fully dissolved. Done!

    And now, a round-up of classic

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  • Search for the best dill pickle turns up surprise winner

    Admittedly, meat sizzling on the grill is the main event of most backyard barbecues. But the menu just wouldn't be complete without salty, garlicky, crunchy dill pickles -- either piled high on top of a cheeseburger or alongside, say, a pulled pork sandwich with potato salad and chips.

    More from The Stir: How to Cook a Wiener & Eat It

    Contrary to popular belief, pickles shouldn't be an afterthought. Rather, careful consideration should go into determining which brand your guests will enjoy most. But with so many lining the supermarket shelves, it's easy to get in a pickle over which one to choose.

    That's why here at The Stir we blindly sampled 7 dill pickle brands and chose the best based on two criteria: flavor and crunchiness. See if you're shocked by the ones that topped our list. (Hint: The winners weren't the ones with the most brand recognition.)

    First, a little background on our in-office taste test. Are we seasoned (heh) pickle experts who spend all of

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  • 20 patriotic baby names inspired by the 4th of July

    When it comes to preparing for a baby, one of the most important items on the to-do list is choosing a name. Some parents have had names picked out for life, and others are bound to family names, but there are plenty of others who have no clue what name they want to bestow upon their child for life and are looking for inspiration anywhere they can get it.

    More from The Stir: 20 Names I Would Never Give my Baby

    With the July 4th holiday upon us, there's no better place to look than this great nation of ours and all of its history. What better gift to give your future little patriot than a name that honors the land of the free and the home of the brave. Here are 20 patriotic baby names inspired by the Fourth of July to consider:

    I've divided them into boy and girl names, but some could be used for either.

    Girls:

    America (think the lovely America Ferrera)

    Glory

    July (there are plenty of Aprils and Junes, but where are the Julys of the world?)

    Madison

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  • The one spot in the house men aren't slobs (PHOTOS)

    What do your socks say about you? Apparently a lot according to a new survey from Chemistry.com that not only ranks the cities with the messiest sock drawers (Charleston, W.V.), but also reveals what your sock drawer says about you. As far as my house goes, the results are dead on.

    More from The Stir: A Room That Will Make You Think Pink (PHOTOS)

    It claims that people who are the most Type-A and appear the most organized to the outside world have the messiest sock drawers. Yep, that would be me. I'm about as anal about organization as you can get when it comes to most things -- just try leaving something on my kitchen counter and watch me physically squirm with a need to find a place for it. When it comes to my sock drawer, however ... well, here take a look:

    I don't even have much of a sock drawer really because I never take time to put them there. I just put them all in the "lost sock" basket, and when I need socks, I dump them out and try to find a match. It would

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  • A room that'll make you think pink


    Nicole Balch has impeccable taste evident by her blog, Making It Lovely, and stationery line, Pink Loves Brown. The name of her stationery line could also be used to describe the room makeover she put together for her little girl, Eleanor. It features lots of pink -- but doesn't come off as princess-y or prissy. I'm guessing any little girl would love to call this space her own.

    More from The Stir: 'Safest Place to Live' Has Me Quaking in My Flip Flops

    See more of the room makeover below.

    The dresser is vintage and painted a soft shade of pink to blend in. I love the ribbon-hung mirror.

    The middle print is a sweet quote about rainbows that Nicole designed herself. It's available for free download here.

    More from The Stir: DIY Chandeliers Will Make Your Room Shine With Glamor!

    Every room feels more comfortable and cozy with piles of books, don't you think? These are stacked on a sweet side table (painted pink of course).

    Here's cute little

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