Blog Posts by The_Stir

  • Valentino Gap Line Too Stylish for Us Uncouth Americans

    Valentino Gap collection cropped jacketValentino Gap collection cropped jacketWhat up, Valentino? You think your fancy designs are too good, too stylish for us Americans? You think we're a bunch of shabby dressers not worthy of your new collection at Gap?

    Well, why else would you only offer his new collection at European Gap stores? What are you trying to say?

    The seven-piece Valentino collection was on site for the opening of Gap's first Italian store last week in Milan. Cause apparently Italians and all their Milan fashion-forward hoopla is good enough for the Big V. The collection also showed up in London and Paris.

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    Seen any Valentino in American Gap stores? I didn't think so.

    Cause we're not worthy.

    Valentino Gap collection jacket

    This ruffled military jacket is pretty great looking, Valentino. I think we Americans could handle it.

    ruffled jacket Valentino Gap

    I really love the look of this longer and belted ruffled military jacket. Of course, on an average-bodied American person like myself, I'm pretty sure it would add about

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  • 3 Simple Holiday Cookies Kids Can Make

    snowball cookies
    Merry Cookies, I mean, Christmas! It's hard to imagine Christmas without all the cookie baking, isn't it? Well, believe me, kids think so, too.

    Many of you parents will be baking a lot on your own, but if you're looking for a few cookie baking recipes that are easy for kids to make, look no more. We've compiled three easy recipes that combine three of the most important aspects of the season: powdered sugar, peppermint, and chocolate.

    More from The Stir:The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies, Ever

    Of course, when it comes to baking and hot ovens, we can't leave kids on their own completely, but these three recipes each have seven or less ingredients and minimal, simple instructions, so the kids can take a big part in the making that comes before the baking.

    3 Simple Holiday Cookies Kids Can Make

    Snowball Cookies (pictured above)

    Recipe by Sharon Mehl for Kaboose


    • 1 cup butter or margarine
    • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
    • 1 teaspoon
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  • 30 Reasons the 30s Are the Best Decade for Sex

    When we hit 30, certain things get worse -- our boobs, ability to pull all-nighters, and energy levels -- but our sex life is not one of them. That, my friends, is about to get so much better.

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    Reese Withspoon told US Weekly this week that her sex life has improved by leaps and bounds in her 30s and you don't have to be a super hot celebrity to agree. Gone is the insecurity and worry of your 20s, but you're still young enough to feel hot (not saying older women aren't hot, just pointing out how women feel about themselves).

    It's the decade-long sweet spot between frantic, stressed out youth and feeling old. It's called the "dirty 30s" for a reason, actually, for 30 of them:

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    1. Energy: Not as much as in your 20s, but still some to spare.
    2. Self-esteem: You finally know yourself.
    3. Commitment: You're likely in more committed, calmer
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  • 5 Bizarre Sex Drive Boosters -- No Whips, Drugs, or Videos

    Even though we look forward to the holidays as a well-deserved break from the daily grind, it can still be difficult to get "in the mood" when you're fighting mall traffic and dealing with relatives.

    In fact, feeling tired and stressed is probably the number one libido-killer.

    More from The Stir: Do Men Care If I'm Not Fresh Down There?

    That's why it couldn't hurt to lean on some wacky, possibly even bizarre tricks to light the spark. After all, who knows? They could get your sex drive motor revving right on through what could be the naughtiest time of the year ...

    1. Tell your guy to pump gas

    No, this has nothing to do with the fact that men acting helpful around the house makes us happy and, therefore, randy. It's a little stranger than that. A new British survey found that women get hot when their guys smell of paint, gasoline, leather, or-get this-a printer ink cartridge?! Apparently these are the scents that "transport" many women back to a happy, romantic

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  • Last Minute Holiday Treats That Barely Count as Baking


    With the bustle of the season, it's easy to lose track of all your holiday obligations. So what happens when your child forgets he's got a holiday party the next day and you're bringing treats? Need something quick to take to the office potluck? Forgot a hostess gift for an imminent holiday party? No time to run to the store? Try these simple, delicious holiday treats that require little else but common ingredients you probably have in your pantry or refrigerator.

    More from The Stir:
    The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies, Ever

    When my sister-in-law and I wanted a late-night cookie fix, I knew immediately that I had everything on hand for snickerdoodles. This soft, cinnamon-covered sugar cookie is a snap to make without any special ingredients, and the cinnamon spice is perfect for the holiday season.

    Try this snickerdoodle recipe from Smitten Kitchen.

    Salted caramels:
    Don't be intimidated by tales of woeful caramel making. It's not that difficult; the trick is to

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  • 6 Pairs of Sparkly Shoes to Get You in the Holiday Spirit

    NordstromNordstromI've given you some ideas on how to affordably dress for your upcoming holiday parties, whether they're casual or dressy.

    But you can always make a little black dress more festive simply by wearing a pair of sparkly shoes.

    These heels from Nordstrom's holiday catalog got me thinking about the attention-getting power of a pair of shiny shoes.

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    The good news is that you don't have to spend a fortune to get the look.

    Read on for my top affordable picks that will turn heads (in a good way!) this holiday season ...


    I LOVE these INC "Beauty Pumps" (Macy's, $59.98). They are fab and not a bad price, either.

    TargetBut if you're really looking to save money, you can't beat the price on these sequin ballet flats (Target, $12.99).

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    GuessThese glitter platform peeptoe pumps (Bloomingdales, $90) are to die for.

    Forever 21These embellished flats (Forever 21, $22.80) look

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  • Organize a Cookie Swap in 5 Easy Steps!

    holiday cookiesholiday cookiesYou may still be picking at what's left of the Thanksgiving pumpkin pie (unless your hubby already ate all of it), but let's face it, the holiday season marches on, meaning pie is out and cookies are in.

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    Right around the beginning of December, my grandmother would always stock her kitchen with all of the necessities for cookie-making: pounds of sugar and flour, chocolate chips, oatmeal, raisins, etc. For the next month, her kitchen would constantly smell of fresh baked cookies that she would then box up and gift to neighbors, teachers, church members, and everyone in between.

    While I really love the idea of baking cookies for others, I'm just not that ambitious (sorry, Grandma). That's why I am a huge huge fan of the cookie swap.

    Instead of making 12 different kinds of cookies, you only have to make several batches of one kind, and then invite guests to bring over batches of their favorite, you swap, and voila

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  • The First 'I Love You!' -- 4 Times It Might Be Risky

    I love youI love youPlanning on saying I love you to your boyfriend for the first time this holiday? What's your hurry?

    Because once the words are out there, there's no taking them back. It's not like you can say, "Hey, I meant to say please pass the butter."

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    The whole situation could turn into a huge big uncomfortable experience if the delivery is not executed properly. Especially if you are the one saying it first.

    So here are 4 tips to think about it before you say those 3 fateful words:

    1. Timing is everything. This is not the thing to say when you are in an intimate moment. Because if the feelings aren't reciprocal, not only are you nakedly mortified, the moment is most likely ruined.

    2. Don't rush in. I love you isn't the thing to say after a second or even third date unless you are my grandparents. They got lucky because it worked out for them. Definitely the exception, not the rule.

    3. Don't be in a mood-altered

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  • Save Your Nasty PDA for the Bedroom

    There is not much grosser than seeing a 70-year-old man groping his similarly aged wife on a bridge in Florence, Italy. Tongues down throats, hands down shirt. The image is seared into my mind even 12 years after I saw it while I was living in Italy.

    More from The Stir: Do Men Care If I'm Not Fresh Down There?

    Public Displays of Affection (PDA) are banned in many high schools so severely that even hugging your boyfriend can earn a suspension. It makes sense, of course. Nobody wants to see teenagers doing things at school that they would not be allowed at home, but high fiving? Holding hands? Are these really that bad?

    I must admit, PDA generally grosses me out. Even when it's done by hot people. I just don't need to see tongues down throat and grabbed booty. Save it for the bedroom.

    If I need to grab my husband's (delicious) rear, I usually try to sneak a peek around and make sure no one is looking before I get a fistful. It's just common courtesy. OK, so we have

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  • A Man Confesses: How Often I Think About Sex

    Here's hoping that as you gave thanks this weekend, you paid tribute in your wishes and prayers to the constant insight into men's psyches you get from Ask Dad. We're like a WikiLeaks for man minds. And we're ready for another document dump. So tell us what to spill:

    How many times a day do guys really think about sex? Do they think about what sex would be like with every random woman they meet?

    I don't normally hesitate to over-share here, but in this case it's crucial that we define our terms. What exactly do we mean by "think"? What do we mean by "sex"? And most important, what do we mean by "about"?

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    Because while a man may only truly think about sex a few times a day, he spends most every moment of every day either thinking over sex, thinking under sex, thinking through sex, thinking around sex, thinking aside sex, thinking in spite of sex, and thinking in lieu of sex.

    The truth is if we let

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