Posted in A New Year, A Possibility, Body+Mind, Common Sense, Health Watch, Interesting Articles

Weight Loss Myths

Myth #1: Carbs are the Enemy

Maybe we can blame Dr. Atkins and other proponents of the low-carb diet craze for this one. Experts suggest that carbohydrates play a star role in keep you energized and your organs functioning properly. The carb bad rap should rest squarely on the shoulders of “white carbs” like white bread, white rice, and sugar. These refined carbs, dietitians suggest, are more likely to pack on the pounds. Stick with whole grains like whole wheat pasta and brown rice for a healthier diet.

Myth #2: Never Eat After 8PM

The habit of under-eating all day only to overdo it at dinner time is likely where this myth came from. Eating excess calories at any hour of the day will lead to weight gain. Just remember: It’s not when you eat, it’s what you eat.

Myth #3: It’s Not a Workout Unless You Sweat

A cardio workout that gets you huffing and puffing is vital for a healthy ticker, but that’s only half the picture. Low-impact workouts, like weight-lifting and yoga, might not leave you drenched in sweat, but they’re equally important to keeping your muscles strong and your body burning calories all day long. Work cardio and resistance training into your exercise regimen and you’ll be seeing the full picture of health.

Myth #4: Weight-Lifting Bulks You Up

Most women don’t have the necessary testosterone levels to transform them into the spitting image of Conan the Barbarian-era Arnold Schwarzenegger. But if you integrate weight-lifting into your workouts and find you’re getting a little too cut, switch to lighter weights and more reps.

Myth #5: Muscle Weighs More than Fat

Here’s the deal: a pound of muscle and a pound of fat weight exactly the same amount. A pound! The difference between muscle and fat is an issue of density and volume. Muscle is denser than fat and takes up less space in your body which can give you a leaner look overall.

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Some interesting myths of weight loss. So now I guess we can differentiate where all the weight gain comes from…

Posted in A whole lot, Budget Wisely, Common Sense, Decorating Ideas and Tips, Fun while learning, Interesting Articles, Organizing Your Life, Something New

Unexpected organizers

Organization Everywhere
There are so many items that can get overlooked as valuable organizers. Just remember, if it used to hold something, chances are it can be put to use again.

Pocket Shoe Organizers: Not just for shoes, these handy, over-the-door organizers are perfect for more than just the bedroom closet.

  • What can it hold? Try stashing plastic shopping bags, garbage bags, oven mitts or potholders—each in its own pocket! It also makes a convenient holder for toilet paper rolls, hand towels and washcloths.
  • Where can it go? The pantry door is a perfect spot to keep all kinds of useful items at your fingertips. You can also put it to use organizing items in a bathroom linen closet or over the bathroom door.

Cardboard six-pack holder: Once your six-pack holder is done keeping your soda safe, it can make another useful stop on the way to recycling. Start by covering it with decorative paper, shelf liner or wallpaper to add reinforcement and give it a new and improved look.

  • What can it hold? Use it to tote condiments, plastic utensils and napkins to a spring picnic, backyard dinner with the family or barbecue party. Or use it to keep light bulbs from rolling around, for carrying coffee cups, water bottles or any time you need an instant caddy.
  • Where can it go? If you’re having a get-together with multiple tables, put a cardboard caddy on each table so everyone has what they need to enjoy the meal. Keep a few caddies folded up in your pantry for use whenever you need one.

Paint or Coffee Can CubbiesPaint or Coffee Can Cubbies:Unused silver paint cans are easy to find at home improvement stores for a small cost or you can easily clean out used coffee cans with Dawn®dish liquid. Recover or paint your cans for a brand new look and add decorative labels or chalkboard paint so you always know what’s inside.

  • What can it hold? Turn your cans on their sides and use them as holders for mail, catalogs and paperwork. They also make great organizers for craft supplies.
  • Where can it go? Some desks have built in shelving that offer the perfect place for your cubbies or just install simple shelving over your workspace.

Bins & Baskets: Whether cute and colorful or big and roomy, waste bins and baskets make great organizers.

  • What can it hold? Use a small and stylish plastic wastebasket to hold wet umbrellas and use a large plastic can for organizing sports equipment. They also make great recycling sorters or can be used to hold poster tubes and wrapping paper.
  • Where can it go? Place a small bin by the door for collecting umbrellas, and a large one in the garage, basement or on the patio for sports equipment. Use several medium-sized bins as recycling sorters in a mudroom or in a roomy kitchen pantry. Keep a tall basket in your craft area or closet to hold wrapping paper or poster tubes. If it’s going to be out in the open, dress it up by covering it in leftover wallpaper or use spray paint made for plastics to change the color.

Organize More
Here are few more quick tips for reusing useful containers to organize:

  • Trays: They’re not just for serving! Collect and contain items all over your home with trays of all shapes and sizes. Organize loose items on a coffee table such as remotes, magazines or catalogs and keep small items like keys and change together in an entryway or on a bedside table. You can even use a large four-sided tray for collecting wet shoes or rain boots by the door or in a mudroom.
  • Jars, Mugs and Glasses: Use these small containers as quick fixes for holding small items on your desk like pens, pencils, thumbtacks, rubber bands and paperclips. Or put them to use in the bathroom to hold cotton swabs, cotton balls, tweezers, make up brushes or toothbrushes.
  • Shoeboxes: They’re the perfect size for storing all kinds of items, from accessories and stationery, to photos and craft supplies. Stop and think before you pitch them and make them look as good as they work by covering the box and lid with wrapping paper or wallpaper to match your décor. Add labels to identify what’s inside.
  • Suitcases: If you don’t travel on a regular basis, don’t let all that empty space inside your suitcases go to waste! They’re perfect for storing out-of-season clothes, shoes and accessories and can often fit easily at the bottom of a closet or under the bed. If you have some nice, old leather cases you can use them as storage out in the open at the end of the bed or as a side table. They could even become a stylish way to store a collection of books or magazines.
  • Office Extras: Make organizing your recyclables easier by repurposing stackable trays often found in home offices. Visit the Home Made Simple TV Organized Life section of
    Bonus Clips to watch a helpful video featuring Home Maven Wanda.

Before you run out to the store to pick up boxes, bins or containers, look around your own home for ideas—you just may find the organization solution you need.

Posted in A New Year, A Possibility, Accomplishments, Body+Mind, Budget Wisely, Clean Up Time, Decorating Ideas and Tips, Fetish Addict, Interesting Articles

Better THAN Perfect

Perfectionism is tricky. It seems like a virtue and a point of honor, but taken to extremes, it’s a paralyzing trap. Perfectionists endlessly berate themselves, judging their work with one of two grades—Perfect or Complete Disaster. Here are a few strategies to help even the most perfect perfectionist find some middle ground.

Julie Morgenstern

  • Ask yourself who your inner critic is. Usually, it’s someone from your past: a harsh parent, teacher, coach, or sibling. Recognize that this voice is probably no longer relevant, and ignore it. Pay attention to people who understand the work you’re doing and have a hand in evaluating it.
  • Practice doing one thing less than perfectly. Start with something that your rational mind knows doesn’t need to be 100 percent—and allow yourself to do a so-so job. Your “good but not great” might be someone’s idea of excellent.
  • Take a break. When you work on something for too long, you reach the point of diminishing returns. You spend hours getting almost nothing done, fixing things that weren’t broken or second-guessing your first, best impulses. Notice when you’re reaching that point, and force yourself to back away. You’ll save yourself from futile effort and time spent redoing work done in a fog of poor judgment.
  • Get a second opinion. Hearing from one or two people you respect will give you the perspective you need.
  • Learn that a deadline is a beautiful thing. If one isn’t handed to you, impose it on yourself. Focus on completion. Something done imperfectly but on time is often better than something done exquisitely but late.
  • Delegate details you obsess over. If you’re struggling with a task that someone else can do faster, better, or well enough, let it go. Know your limits. Sane and productive beats impeccable and self-flagellating any day.
  • Limit the number of revisions you grant yourself. Computers make it far too easy to keep changing your work. Track yourself for a week to see how many times you tweak documents. If it’s normally seven, scale back to six, then five, or four. Once you hit your targeted number, stop.
  • Recognize degrees of excellence. We all strive for a Perfect 10—when everything goes smoothly and you feel great about your work. But it’s unrealistic to reach it with every project. As long as you hit at least a seven, you should feel good about your work.
    Info @ Oprah
Posted in A whole lot, Common Sense, Fun while learning, Interesting Articles, Marriage, Married Life, Mars and Venus, Mind+Body

Sex-planations

You know that sex makes you feel closer to your guy, that stilettos are totally hot, and that hitting the sheets together feels completely different from satisfying yourself solo — but have you ever wondered why?

high heel shoes

Lucky for you, author Jena Pincott sifted through hundreds of scientific studies in order to explain what’s behind these and other sexy truths in her new book, Do Gentlemen Really Prefer Blondes? Read on for the answers to three burning questions.

Why do I like and trust him more after sex?

You can thank your hormones for this one. “When you cuddle, kiss, or have sex, your body’s oxytocin production kicks in,” says Pincott. “This so-called hug drug helps you feel closer and more connected by suppressing activity in the part of your brain that processes fear and dampening the production of stress hormones.” Orgasm leads to a particularly strong surge of oxytocin. “And because estrogen enhances the effects of oxytocin and we women have much higher estrogen levels than men, we’re more likely to experience this touching-leads-to-trusting phenomenon,” says Pincott.

Why are high heels sexy?
The stuff you strut is more sensual when you’re up on your toes, says Pincott: “Heels force your pelvis to tilt so that both your rear end and chest stick out.” One study showed that leg lengths 5 percent longer than average are the most attractive, so for most women, a 1.5- to 3-inch heel would create the ideal leg length. “This attraction might be evolutionary, because long legs are associated with better long-term health, which would appeal to a mate,” says Pincott. “Plus, much like a peacock flaunts his feathers, which are really quite heavy and a nuisance, a woman teetering in heels can show off her fitness and coordination.”

Why is intercourse more satisfying than masturbation?
Good sex engages your body and senses (not to mention your emotions) more deeply than masturbation, so it stimulates the production of higher levels of dopamine, the horniness hormone. Now, stay with us here: After orgasm, dopamine levels plummet and anotherhormone, prolactin, skyrockets to take dopamine’s place. “Prolactin is what gives you that feeling of satiety — and the more dopamine you had in your bloodstream during sex, the more prolactin rushes in to replace it afterward,” says Pincott. “In fact, prolactin levels are a full 400 percent higher in people when they’ve just had sex than when they’ve masturbated.” Another one of prolactin’s effects you might have noticed: Post-coitus, it puts your partner right to sleep!

Got this article @ Redbook.Sex

Posted in Clean Up Time, Common Sense, Interesting Articles

Natural Ingredients

Porcelain and Tile

Keep your bathrooms and kitchen tile spotless and hygienic without harsh commercial cleaners. Give these natural remedies a try:

Baking Soda and Water (with kosher salt): Dust surfaces with baking soda, then scrub with a moist sponge or cloth. If you have tougher grime, sprinkle on some kosher salt, and work up some elbow grease.

Lemon Juice or Vinegar: Got stains, mildew or grease streaks? Spray or douse with lemon juice or vinegar. Let sit a few minutes, then scrub with a stiff brush.

Disinfectant: Instead of bleach, make your own disinfectant by mixing 2 cups of water, 3 tablespoons of liquid soap and 20 to 30 drops of tea tree oil. It’s easy!

Clean Kitchens

The room where food is prepared, stored and often enjoyed requires constant vigilance. Splatters, spills and errant crumbs can build up and collect out of sight, possibly encouraging harmful bacteria. Give your kitchen a thorough going-over this spring.

Baking Soda and Water: Reclaim counters by sprinkling with baking soda, then scrubbing with a damp cloth or sponge. If you have stains, knead the baking soda and water into a paste and let set for a while before you remove. This method also works great for stainless steel sinks, cutting boards, containers, refrigerators, oven tops and more.

Kosher Salt and Water: If you need a tougher abrasive sprinkle on kosher salt, and scrub with a wet cloth or sponge.

Natural Disinfectant: To knock out germs without strong products, mix 2 cups of water, 3 tablespoons of liquid soap and 20 to 30 drops of tea tree oil. Spray or rub on countertops and other kitchen surfaces.

Windows and Mirrors

Nobody wants to clean windows when it’s cold out, so take advantage of balmy breezes to bring some clarity to your life. Instead of sprays you buy at the store, discover this highly effective, simple solution:

White Vinegar, Water and Newspaper: Mix 2 tablespoons of white vinegar with a gallon of water, and dispense into a used spray bottle. Squirt on, then scrub with newspaper, not paper towels, which cause streaking.

If you’re out of vinegar or don’t like its smell, you can substitute undiluted lemon juice or club soda.

Carpet and Rugs

Keeping carpets clean is less daunting than you might think, even after a season of tracked-in dirt and salt.

Beat Those Rugs: Take any removable rugs outside and beat the dust and hair out with a broom.

Club Soda: You’ve probably heard the old adage that club soda works well on carpet stains. But you have to attack the mess right away. Lift off any solids, then liberally pour on club soda. Blot with an old rag. The soda’s carbonation brings the spill to the surface, and the salts in the soda thwart staining.

Cornmeal: For big spills, dump cornmeal on the mess, wait 5 to 15 minutes, and vacuum up the gunk.

Spot Cleaner: Make your own by mixing: 1/4 cup liquid soap or detergent in a blender, with 1/3 cup water. Mix until foamy. Spray on, then rinse with vinegar.

To Deodorize: Sprinkle baking soda or cornstarch on the carpet or rug, using about 1 cup per medium-sized room. Vacuum after 30 minutes.

Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are beautiful, hygienic, long lasting and add value to your home. They are easy to vacuum, but don’t do well with wet mopping. So how do you restore their natural glow without roughing them up?

Vinegar: Whip up a solution of 1/4 cup white vinegar and 30 ounces of warm water. Put in a recycled spray bottle, then spray on a cotton rag or towel until lightly damp. Then mop your floors, scrubbing away any grime.

Safer Oven Cleaning

Conventional oven cleaning chemicals are loaded with toxic ingredients, including ethers, ethylene glycol, lye (sodium and potassium hydroxide), methylene chloride and petroleum distillates. The products are harmful to skin and eyes, and the fumes are unhealthy. Instead, go natural!

Baking Soda and Water: Coat the inside of your dirty appliance with a paste made from water and baking soda. Let stand overnight. Then, don gloves and scour off that grime. Make spotless with a moist cloth.

Clogged Drains

A stopped up sink or tub is a real hassle, but pouring toxic chemicals like Drano on them isn’t so wise. Not only will that pollute our waterways, but the products can cause chemical burns and are highly dangerous if ingested. Do you really want that in your home?

Baking Soda and Boiling Water (vinegar if needed): Feeling plugged up? Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda into the problem drain, followed by 2 cups of boiling water. If that isn’t doing it for you, chase the baking soda with a 1/2 cup of vinegar and cover tightly, allowing the vigorous fizzing of the chemical reaction to break up the gunk. Then flush that with one gallon of boiling water.

Antique Linens

Whether you have fine family heirloom pieces or something with character you picked up at an estate sale for a song, you’re eventually going to have to wash your antique linens. Even with advanced settings on today’s washing machines, you still may want to address fragile fabrics by hand.

Sunlight: What could be easier than sanitizing and removing stains…with sunlight! (Just don’t do it too often with fragile pieces, because they can start to breakdown). Simply lay your old lace, curtains and other fine linens on the grass in the sun for a few hours. Dirtier pieces can be dampened first.

Boiling: If that doesn’t do the trick, fill a pot with water and bring to a boil on your stove top. Drop in linens and let steep until stains lift.

Detergent and Borax: Mix dishwasher detergent and borax together until you get a thick rubbing paste. Rub into soiled linens, then rinse clean.

Peroxide: If you have stubborn stains, try spraying them with peroxide, then rinsing with water.

Keep your metals magnificent

Commercial silver polish contains toxins, and manufacturers recommend you don’t leave on skin too long. Do you really want something like that spread over your flatware?

Silver

Aluminum Foil, Boiling Water, Baking Soda and Salt: Keep your sterling shined with this seemingly magic method. Line your sink or a bucket with aluminum foil, and drop in tarnished silver. Pour in boiling water, a cup of baking soda and a dash of salt. Let sit for a few minutes. The tarnish will transfer from the silver to the foil.

Toothpaste: If you can’t immerse your items or are otherwise inclined to polish by hand, rub tarnished silver with toothpaste and a soft cloth. Rinse with warm water and dry. Instead of toothpaste you can substitute a concoction made of 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water.

Copper

Ketchup: To keep your copper pots, pans and accents looking bright and shiny, try rubbing with ketchup.

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Interesting, isn’t it?