Blog Posts by Elise Solé, Shine Staff

  • Weddings in 2014: Crop-Top Dresses, Instagram Bans, and Parties That Never End

    The KnotFuture brides, take note! This year, weddings are getting a major upgrade and everything from dresses to dance floor playlists to photo booths is fair game.  According to a new survey published by the wedding planning website The Knot, 9 new trends are on the horizon for 2014. Check them out.

    The '90s are baaaack: No, weddings won't resemble a night at "The Peach Pit After Dark," but the 1990s are making a comeback — En Vogue songs on the dance floor, hired break dancing troupes, temporary grunge tattoos as party favors. And this fashion surprise: "Two-piece crop-top wedding gowns will be big," Anja Winikka, site director of, tells Yahoo Shine. "Showing a peek of skin can be chic, as long as you have a short torso." Or, opt for a gown with cutout or sheer panels.

    Woodland weddings: Never heard of a "Woodland wedding?" Google "Sean Parker" and you'll get the idea. When the Facebook former president got married in June, he threw a multi-million dollar "Lord of the Rings"

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  • Target Employee Follows Her Intuition and Busts Kidnapper

    Hearing the startling screech of an Amber Alert prompted a Target employee to help crack a kidnapping case. Roxanna Ramirez, 22, an employee at a store in Pittsburg, California was at work on Friday when she saw a male customer acting strangely. "When I first spotted him in the store, I thought he was going to shoplift," Ramirez told Oakland, California, news affiliate KTVU. "He had a backpack, and he was picking things up and putting them down in the men's department."

    As a loss-prevention specialist, Ramirez is trained to be on the lookout for suspicious behavior, so she began following the man throughout the store. She asked him if he needed assistance, and he declined. Undeterred, Ramirez went to her office and observed him on surveillance cameras. Yahoo Shine could not reach Ramirez for comment, but she told KTVU, "He was fidgeting around, acting really weird, abnormal. I don't know, it just didn't make me feel comfortable." When the man left the store, Ramirez continued watching

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  • 8 Awesome Things to Do During the Polar Vortex

    Understatement of the year: It's cold.

    Yup, for most of North America, it's downright frigid, with the record-breaking blast of arctic chill, dubbed the "Polar Vortex," plunging the continent into historically low temperatures. (On Monday, Chicago sunk to a record low of  -16, and in Kentucky, an escaped prisoner turned himself in just to avoid the cold). Since every day seems to be a snow day right now, you might as well make the best of it. Here are eight things to try besides that freezing-boiling-water experiment.

    Make snow graffiti.


    Show your neighbor who’s boss by building a massive snow shark.

    Photo: AP

    Freeze soap bubbles. Washington photographer Angela Kelly did, and the results are breathtaking.
    photo: Kelly Images and Photography

    Go jogging in a Spider-Man costume. Odds are, no one will see you.
    photo: Reuters

    Take up cross-country skiing. It’s faster than the bus and a lot more fun.
    Photo: Joshua Lott/Getty Images

    Evoke the ‘90s by busting out your old Super Soaker, filling it with boiling water, and raging warfare on no one in particular.

    Make maple snow taffy.

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  • Awesome Dad Styles Daughter's Hair, Breaks Internet

    Daddy Doin' WorkCall it the "Daddy Wars." One Los Angeles blogger sparked them when a photo he posted of himself and his two daughters on Twitter and Facebook quickly went viral. A father of two Doyin Richards (pronounced Doe-ween), 39, is currently taking a paternity leave of absence from his job in learning development to care for his daughters, ages 6 months and 2 years. He described the incident on his blog.

    "One morning, [my wife] was running late for work and was worried that she wouldn't be able to get [my daughter's] hair done before I had to take her to school. I told her that she could leave and I'd handle it. She countered by saying that doing her hair requires attention and the baby would get upset if I left her alone while I played the role of stylist. Again, I told her that I'd handle it. On the way out she said, 'I'll believe it when I see it.'" Still determined, Richards placed his infant into her carrier and "worked my hair magic." He also set up his camera, enabled its 10-second

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  • ELLE Crops Mindy Kaling's Cover Photo, World Freaks Out


    We were thrilled to see that the amazing Mindy Kaling graces ELLE's annual "Women in TV" issue, but that's where our excitement ends. The cover photo is a black-and-white headshot of our favorite funny lady — with her self-proclaimed size 8 curves nowhere in sight.

    Each year, ELLE highlights the best and buzziest women in television. The issue (on stands Jan. 14) features four covers, each with a different female celeb. Kaling's fellow cover stars include Zooey Deschanel, Amy Poehler, and Allison Williams, who all flaunt their bodies in designer clothes. Williams strikes a pose in a strapless, clingy Anthony Vaccarello jersey dress; Poehler flashes her cleavage and legs in a black, fitted satin jacket and leggings; and Deschanel juts her hip in an embroidered net Valentino dress. Make no mistake: Kaling's photo is gorgeous — the comedian and actress wears a wool-blend jacket from Theory by Olivier Theyskens and drips with diamond accessories — but many of Kaling's fans aren't impressed

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  • The Surprising Effect of Praising Kids

    Photo: CorbisWhen your kid receives a gold star at school, parental instincts may compel you to shower him or her with praise ("You're amazing!"), but according to a forthcoming review of three studies published in the journal Psychological Science, some kids actually may not benefit from such accolades.

    The study included children with high self-esteem and those with low self-esteem and examined a phenomenon called "inflated praise" — exaggerated compliments that include adverbs such as, "incredibly" or "really." For example, "You did incredibly well on this test" or "This is really, really good." Surprisingly, the results showed that while kids with high self-esteem benefited from hearing lavish praise, those with low self-esteem were actually hurt by it.

    More on Yahoo Shine: School's Girl Power Ad Campaign Sends the Right Message

    "Parents tend to believe that kids with low self-confidence need to hear inflated praise, but they don't," Brad J. Bushman, Ph.D., a co-author of the study who is a

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  • Urban Outfitters Pulls "Depression" T-shirt. Here We Go Again

    Urban Outfitters

    Hipster retailer Urban Outfitters is stirring up trouble yet again. This time it's for selling a cropped T-shirt emblazoned with the word "Depression." The company apologized and pulled the item from its website after an outpouring of complaints that the shirt glamorized mental illness.

    The shirt, created by a Singaporean brand called "Depression," had been quietly selling for a while, but it caught public attention when it was marked down to $9.99 from $59. The shirt's tagline read, "Super depressing tee from Depression topped with an allover logo graphic." Twitter users swooped in, calling the brand "disgusting" and "inconsiderate."

    The news comes on the heels of the company's

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  • Grieving Father's Petition Could Change the Way People Dial 911

    Kari Hunt with two of her children. Photo: Courtesy of Hank HuntThe father of a Texas woman who was killed in a hotel room, police believe by her estranged husband, is preserving her memory by lobbying to change 911 laws. He launched a petition which has garnered 342,000 signatures, that could potentially save millions of lives.

    Last month, authorities said, 31-year-old Kari Rene Hunt Dunn was meeting her soon-to-be ex-husband, Brad Allen Dunn, at the Baymont Inn & Suites in Marshall, Texas. Kari had her kids — aged 9, 4, and 3 — when Brad attacked her with a knife, authorities said. During the struggle, Kari's 9-year-old daughter attempted to call 911 but had no idea she had to dial 9 in order to get an outside line. As a result, her call was blocked by the hotel's phone system. Kari was found dead at the hotel, and Brad has since been arrested and is being held on a $5 million bond.

    In response to his daughter's death, Hank Hunt, 54, has launched a petition urging U.S. lawmakers to enact "Kari's Law" which would require all hotels and

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  • 11 Cars Have Crashed Into Their House, but This Couple Won't Move

    Indianapolis couple Tim and Leigh McCall love their home of 30 years and wouldn't dream of moving. The problem: Speeding cars keep crashing into it.

    Over the past three decades, 11 cars have crashed into the McCall home, a two-story duplex that Tim, 51, and Leigh, 58, share with Leigh's mother. The latest crash occurred on Sunday afternoon while the McCalls were relaxing in their living room watching the Indianapolis Colts game. Suddenly, a Chevy Equinox came careening into their dining room, missing Leigh by about a foot. The 29-year-old driver, Katie Anderson Spears, had sped over a set of railroad tracks located 150 feet from the McCall home, broken through the family's chain link fence, and driven into their dining room. The crash propelled Spears body halfway through the car's windshield, but she was not seriously injured.

    More on Yahoo Shine:
    Rescued Pit Bull Saves 4-Year-Old's Life

    For now, the couple are staying at a nearby hotel (their insurance company is footing the bill)

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  • The Best (and Worst) Restaurant Tippers of 2013

    Instagram/Tips for JesusMost restaurant servers have good and bad tipping stories they never forget, like the quiet guy who ordered only coffee and left a really generous tip or the patron who vanished without leaving a gratuity. But this year there were plenty of tipping tales that got way wilder than those. Here's a look back at the ones that made headlines. Whether these servers were naughty or nice, they were the recipients of the most outrageous, heartwarming, and cringeworthy tips of the year.

    The too-good-to-be-true: In October, a St. Louis bartender was shocked to receive a $200,000-plus payout on a bill totaling just $111.54. Using the name "Randomdayzee" on Reddit, she shared her experience of waiting on two sisters, one of whom left the exorbitant tip. The shocked server alerted her manager, who called Visa and learned that tips deemed "excessive" would not be processed. The incident caused some redditors to speculate that the tipper was a scam artist who knew that her credit card would reject such

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