Blog Posts by Sarah Beston, Shine Staff

  • Teaching your kids to give back

    With the holiday's right around the corner, it becomes increasingly difficult not to get caught up in the typical madness of shopping, cooking, baking, decorating, entertaining, and traveling. All stuff that taken in the right context can be great fun, but often times ends up as the antithesis of the true meaning of the holiday season: giving. I am completely guilty of getting stressed over the little things this time of year, but this season is a great time to stop and remind ourselves and our little ones how fortunate we really are and how just a little time, money, and effort can make an enormously positive impact in someone else's life. And what better time to teach your child an invaluable lesson in the process?

    Here are some easy ways that you and your family can make a difference this holiday season.



    Give Time


    While many of us are trying to cram various parties into our busy schedules and decide on the perfect menu for entertaining our holiday guests, some people go without a

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  • What are your favorite holiday traditions and memories?

    Whether it's baking snowman cookies, trimming an over-sized Christmas tree, hanging obscene amounts of red and green lights and plastic reindeer, or re-watching "It's a Wonderful Life" for the thousandth time, the holiday season brings with it warm traditions of years past. Handed down from generation to generation, traditions often form lasting ties with those who have gone before us and create new memories with the loved ones in our lives. They create a sense of togetherness and give you something to look forward to all year.

    When I was young, my mother would take me to New York City for a weekend during the holiday season. We would bundle up, jump on the Amtrak in Boston, and head to the city where we would do some shopping, go ice skating in Central Park, and see the big tree all lit up at Rockefeller Center. There was something so magical about the madness of the city during the holidays…the crowds of people rushing to get their last-minute shopping done; the Salvation

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  • Yahoo! talks with Laura Bush about life after the White House

    In this exclusive interview, Yahoo! News talks to former first lady Laura Bush about life after the White House, how the White House shaped her daughters' careers, and what's next for the Bush family.

    We've got the clips.

    Laura Bush says her the former president can be counted on help around the house.



    Laura Bush shares how the White House charter her daughters' career paths.


    The former first lady talks about her next project: The Bush Institute.


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  • Maria Shriver's Women's Conference inspires women to make a difference

    "You don't have to fill anyone's shoes but your own." -Maria Shriver

    In a day of overwhelming inspiration, more than 85 world opinion leaders, along with a sold-out crowd of more than 14,000 attendees from all over the world gathered this week in Long Beach, Calif., for the annual California Women's Conference. Hosted by California First Lady Maria Shriver and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, the nation's premiere forum for women featured some of the world's most influential individuals as they engaged in conversations and shared their personal stories in an effort to inspire women to transform themselves and their communities.

    "I firmly believe that you don't have to be a first lady or an elected official to change the world" said Shriver in an interview leading up to the event. "The goal of this conference is to make you feel strong, and empowered, and inspired to go out and be an architect of change."

    One of the most notable moments from the event came when First Lady

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  • Widow gives dead husband's sperm to girlfriend

    Earlier this week, The New York Post reported that a grieving Manhattan widow, who won a court order preserving her husband's sperm, named her husband's girlfriend to be the surrogate mother of his child. Read that again. This is what allegedly happened: George Kamau committed suicide by hanging himself in his girlfriend Etaghua Asefa's home. His wife, Victoria Chege submitted a sperm-preservation request immediately after his death. Chege explained in court papers that Kamau wanted a family, and would have approved of the surrogacy. Chege then named her husband's girlfriend Asefa as the "family friend and appointed surrogate" mother who would receive sperm harvested from her late husband's corpse. Huh?

    As it turns out Kamau was dead for at least 60 hours before the judge signed the order that allowed the sperm to be taken from Kamau's body. According to experts, sperm must be taken from a dead body within 36 hours to be viable. Thank god. We can't imagine that an off-spring

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  • Annika Sorenstam on "stepping away" from golf and into new life roles

    There comes a time in all elite athletes' lives when they have to "step away" from their respective sports. When they do, not only are they leaving a sport that they know and love, but often they are leaving behind the only life they have ever known.

    Swedish professional golfer Annika Sorenstam, 40, one of the world's most recognized golfers and the female golfer with the most wins to her name, knows all about this transition.

    Being a premiere athlete, with all of the time and commitment it requires, is a lifestyle. You "wake up, work out, practice, play, and the next day do the same thing" says Sorenstam in an interview with Graham Bensinger. So what happens when these roles change?

    Here, Sorenstam sits down with Bensinger and discusses this shift of stepping away from competitive golf and stepping into new roles in her life as a mother and businesswoman.

    The "determination and focus" that Annika utilized in becoming a successful golfer have now been applied to the

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  • Is there a cure for "athlete infidelity?"

    In the wake of recent scandals from Tiger Woods, Brett Favre, and about a zillion others, it's becoming increasingly difficult to stop associating athletes with infidelity. But a new organization, started by a couple of NFL wives, is out to change that perception.

    Tia Robbins, wife of NFL defensive tackle Fred Robbins, founded the company Off the Market, whose mission is to, well, keep athletes faithful.

    The ladies seek to "enrich the lives of couples by offering a unique environment, exclusive services, and access to valuable resources for the ultimate benefit and honoring of the relationship between woman and man."

    A recent story posted by CNBC's Darrel Rovell quoted Robbins: "This is a company's chance to reach a high-profile demographic in an intimate setting." Robbins also admits that it's getting harder and harder to fight the public perception that all athletes cheat. "I get it all the time," said Robbins. "Everyone's situation is different and there are a lot of

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  • Join the conversation: Does sex get better with age?

    Do you have any sex-related questions that you have been dying to ask, but are too embarrassed or aren't quite sure whom to consult? This Monday, October 18 at 8 pm EST, 5 pm PST, a panel of relationship doctors will provide their expert opinions and answer any questions you have ever had on life's most intimate subject: sex. Frequent Shine contributor, genConnect, is hosting a Sex for Life event that includes a live-streamed online panel discussion addressing the "every woman's" questions about love, sex and more.

    From your computer, you can watch the event live -- and ask any burning questions you've always wanted to ask to the doctors in real-time.We'll have the live-streaming video in this post to watch during the live panel discussion.

    The first Sex for Life Series - Sex After 35 will be hosted by Dr. Janet Taylor: A frequent "Today" show contributor, psychiatrist, public speaker and board chair of the National Black Women's Health Imperative.

    Other experts include:

    Dr.

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  • How to enjoy a perfect staycation

    I am not going to pretend that I would rather stay at home and vacation than hop on a plane to some exotic spa retreat in Bali for a week or three, but sometimes little things like time and money get in the way. That said, there is no reason you can't have an ultra-enjoyable and luxurious vacation in the comfort of your own hometown.

    Most people have heard of a "staycation" by now, but until you have actually tried it, you may not know how to do it just right. So pack up your imaginary suitcase, grab your planner, and follow these simple, yet important guidelines for enjoying a perfect vacation at home.

    Plan ahead

    If you want to get the very most out of your staycation, you need to treat it as you would any other vacation by planning ahead. Set the exact dates and amount of time you will be on your vacation, and plan your activity agenda in advance of your "trip." It is very easy to say that you are going to devote time to doing fun things only to fall right back into

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  • Fast food wedding: Hong Kong McDonald's offer wedding packages

    Photo courtesy of cnngo.comPhoto courtesy of cnngo.comI thought it was bad enough when my mom decided to rent out the local Burger King and invite all seven of my friends to celebrate my 8th birthday at the big, awkward, silver-castle thing. Turned out, the castle was double booked and my party moved to inside the restaurant to the smoking section of BK. That's right...complete with king hats, whoppers, and a pack of smokes. I really thought that it couldn't get any better than that, but it just did: a Hong Kong McDonald's is now offering wedding packages.

    I will have a husband with that Happy Meal, please.

    And we are having a hard time deciding whether this is awesome or awful.

    Here's why we're loving it:

    The package includes: a baked apple-pie wedding cake via microwave, a fantastic dress made of party balloons (we can only hope they have Ronald McDonald all over them), and catering courtesy of Mickey D's. (Have you seen what chicken nuggets are made out of lately?)Photo courtesy of cnngo.comPhoto courtesy of cnngo.com

    Who wouldn't want a guest list that

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