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  • Do firming "fitness shoes" really work?

    The ads are all over the place lately: Simply wear these uniquely-rounded shoes and bam! you magically develop a booty that would make J-Lo jealous. Fact or fiction? Here's what a research team who recently tested the shoes on 12 women have to say.
    Rounded Fitness Shoe

    There's been a lot of hype around shoes that help you tone as you walk - what could be easier than simply wearing shoes that lift and shape your trouble spots? But do these rounded-sole fitness shoes really work?

    Rounded-sole shoes - as opposed to your flat-soled regular running or training shoes - are engineered with a special sole to simulate natural walking. They're multi-layered and rounded so you aren't hitting the ground flat.

    Rounded-sole toning shoes: Hype or help?

    There are many popular toning shoe brands, as well as some specialty ones that have developed their own versions of this new sole design and marketed them as a better way to get around. But how much of this is hype, and how much is actually science? It depends

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  • Can your child catch something from your pet?

    Boy and KittenThe question:
    Is there anything my child can "catch" from family pets?

    The Pediatrician answers:
    Very little, actually. Most germs are fairly species-specific. Bites can get infected, but human bites are much more dangerous. Occasional parasites, such as larvae cutaneous migrans, can be transmitted. Also, dogs can get Strep throat, and give it back if kissed.

    >> How pets benefit child development

    The only significant diseases from mammals are:

    1) Rabies: If a raccoon or bat bites your pet, the pet can acquire rabies -- and they can, in turn, bite the master. Any animal bite must have the biting animal observed for behavioral changes for several weeks.

    >> How to introduce pets to your children

    2) Cat scratch disease (also known as cat scratch fever), which causes massive lymph node swelling and tiredness and fevers of unknown origin for months should really be called "kitten scratch fever" since it is mainly transmitted by cats less than 1 year old. It is

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  • Should there be child-free zones on airplanes?

    A recent poll by Skyscanner revealed that almost 60 percent of travelers would prefer that airlines make families with children sit in family-only sections on flights. In addition, almost 20 percent would prefer to fly on child-free flights altogether! We know that some kids are loud and obnoxious on airplanes, but so are some adult passengers. Although many parents wouldn't mind sitting in a families-only section, not all fliers agree. Here's how to make sure your child is on his best behavior when flying.

    Little girl on airplane

    Not surprisingly, the travelers who voted for a family-only section said they don't have young children and want to sit as far away from kids as possible. Of the parents of young children polled, only 7 percent said they wouldn't mind being limited to a families-only section.

    What does this mean for traveling families? If you do have a choice, try to seat your family next to other kids or a sympathetic-looking grandma instead of a traveling bachelor businessman. If you

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  • Are small boobs in style?

    by Betsy Bailey for

    Could it possibly be true that small boobs are the newest trend in fashion? Loving your body the way it is? Now that's a trend we're on board for. It's recession-friendly, too.
    a cup sexy braa cup sexy bra


    Is there a small boob trend going on? The Web is abuzz lately with news of women celebrating the small chest. It all started last week when The New York Times reported that contrary to what you might think,women who have small breasts like it that way.

    I say that it's about time we're hearing more about this! I'd like to see this news get even more attention in the media, particularly in Hollywood. (Naturally, I would feel that way - being an A cup myself...)


    Don't get me wrong: If large breasts were your genetic destiny, there's certainly plenty to love about your curves (like: having cleavage!), and there have been plenty of times (especially when trying on swimsuits) that I've longed for a

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  • How to create a homework nook

    Now that school is in full swing, the homework is coming home regularly and en masse. As your kids wind into the grind, here's how to create the perfect homework space to help them study hard.

    Child doing homework at desk

    Where do your kids do their homework? It can be tempting to let them just do it wherever they can find space, but creating a designated area can help them work harder and do better. It doesn't have to be a dedicated space in your house, as long as it's the same space daily.

    Here are some tips to help you create the right homework space for your kids.


    First thing first: the homework space isn't about you -- it's about them. So make it something that works for your child.

    "The most usable and desirable homework nook is one that's designed with the child in mind," says Kathy Koch, Ph.D., president and founder of Celebrate Kids, Inc. Koch says that the homework space should fit the specific needs of your child's learning style.

    That may even mean that the

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  • The "bye-bye" syndrome epidemic

    by Mary Fetzer for

    More than one child every week dies as a result of being struck by their own parents' car as they run outside to say goodbye. How can we prevent this tragedy from occurring? Find out some simple steps to take to prevent this from happening to you or your family.

    Child Chasing Car

    In May 2008, the five-year-old daughter of Christian singer Steven Curtis Chapman was playing in the family driveway when her brother accidentally struck her with his SUV. Maria Sue later died at the hospital. (See Steven Curtis Chapman with Maria Sue Chapman below.)

    In Germantown, Wisconsin, Diane Anthony repeatedly ran over her two-year-old son -- thinking he was the landscape timber in her front yard that she had run over before. After being struck four times by the 4,600-pound van, the boy amazingly survived.

    On Easter Sunday 2003, Steve Campbell was backing his truck out of the driveway when he struck his two-year-old son, Drew. Drew died on the way to the hospital.

    A NEW Read More »from The "bye-bye" syndrome epidemic
  • I don't want my family in the delivery room!

    By etiquette expert Melissa Leonard for Pregnancy & Baby

    Your question:
    How do I tell my mother-in-law that I don't want her at my birth? We get along well -- I just consider this a private event.

    The expert answers:
    I second that! Some people don't mind if family and friends gather round to see the big event. Personally, I wouldn't want others to see me in that position... literally.

    First, find out the hospital policy. Many hospitals do not allow more than one person in the birthing room at a time. If this is the case, you would naturally want your husband to be in the room with you.

    Dads in the delivery room

    If the hospital does not have a policy, have a conversation with your spouse, and then sit down with your mother-in-law. Let her know that although you understand her desire to be in the room during the birth of her grandchild, you have both decided that you would feel more comfortable if no family was in the room. She may accept this answer or she may not.

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  • Burn 500 calories! Top 10 calorie-burning activities

    Looking for the best exercise to shred calories and help you reach your weight-loss goal? Running and rollerblading top the charts -- but there are at least a half-dozen other physical activities that can burn over 500 calories per hour.
    Burn calories fast!
    One pound equals 3500 calories. That means to lose weight, you have to reduce the number of calories in your regular diet or burn calories through exercise. But bothis the best of all! A commitment to a combination of eating fewer calories and burning calories through physical activity is the most effective weight loss plan.

    >> 15 Ways to curb your cravings with 50 calories or less

    If you reduce your caloric intake by 500 per day, and if your daily workout burns 500 calories, you will theoretically lose two pounds per week - a safe amount of weight to lose in a week.

    Knowing the calories burned by your favorite exercise as well as others can help you design the most effective workout regimen for your fitness and weight-loss goals. The top 10

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  • Surprise! A free beauty basic you never knew existed

    Says SheKnows blogger Minsun Park, "It's not every day that I come across a beauty product that is extremely effective, easily obtainable and free." How easily obtainable? Here's a hint: Just head to your nearest public restroom.


    For years, I've been wasting my money on tiny squares of oil blotting rice paper in elegant little packets. Since my complexion is the Exxon Valdez of oil slicks, I easily go through six of these itsy bitsy squares per blotting session.

    The upside of such oily skin is having the complexion of a 16-year-old, although I'm now 36. The downside, is, well... having the complexion of a 16-year-old and all its acne-ridden glory.

    Rejuvenate your skin with homemade facial cleansers >>

    I was bemoaning my oily fate to my dermatologist one day when she suggested I try using the toilet seat covers in restrooms. They're made out of the same rice paper, she said, and they're big - so one seat cover should do the trick.

    Budget alternatives to

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  • Be a Bake Sale diva: Bake Sale recipes and tips

    Back to school means back to bake sales! Fund raising will be a breeze with these delicious gourmet treats. Wrap each treat in a cellophane bag, tie with a colorful ribbon and attach with a printed label. Just be sure to make extras -- these baked goods are going to sell out fast!



    Makes 24 servings


    • 1 refrigerated Pillsbury pie crust (2 crusts per package)
    • 6 tablespoons sugar
    • 4 tablespoons cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
    • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature


    1. Unroll the pie crusts according to the package directions.
    2. Combine the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg until well mixed.
    3. Spread 1/4 cup butter on each pie crust, all the way to the edges.
    4. Divide and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture on top of the butter.
    5. Gently roll up each pie crust into the shape of a log, jelly roll style.
    6. Slice the cinnamon pinwheels 1/4" thick and place on a greased cookie sheet.
    7. Bake at 350°F
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