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December 2011 (104 posts)
Lipstick has had a cult following since...well...forever, but the same fundamental problems have existed since the very beginning. The bullet quickly transforms from a sharp, perfect slant to a dull, rounded nub in just a few uses—making application less precise. Gloss is always an option, but getting the last quarter out at the bottom of the tube with the wand is usually impossible. Exude's new line, however, is checking off those cosmetic quandaries one-by-one. The plastic applicator retains it's shape no matter how many times you reapply. Plus, you can release as much or as little of the moisturizing, mint-scented color as you want by clicking the bottom of the tube clockwise. If you've over-clicked, turning the base in the opposite direction sucks the product back inside so that you never waste a drop. For a more satiny look, opt for one of the nine crème shades. If you love shine, try the five gloss shades that range from red to clear.
6 ways to hide the signs of holiday stress
A lipstick that feels like a gloss
In an effort to diversify our holiday-related vegging-out, my
husband and I recently enjoyed that forgotten favorite, “A Holiday Affair.” In this curious film an unemployed Robert
Mitchum buys a widow's son a toy train, which turns out to be
more than just a generous gesture, but indeed a true show of character.
I was reminded of this when I read that anonymous donors have been paying off other peoples’ Kmart layaway balances all across the country. According to this AP article, a mysterious woman paid off a struggling father’s Christmas gifts at an Indianapolis Kmart recently, while Kmart customers across the Midwest have been getting calls telling them someone paid off their layaway balances, which means they’ll be able to take their purchases home before the holiday. "It was like an angel fell out of the sky and appeared in our store," said one 40-year Kmart employee. A nurse whose child’s Christmas present were anonymously paid for said, “It made me believe in Christmas again."
Best of all, one recipient said she planned to pay it forward by taking care of someone else’s layaway balance – keeping the cycle of giving. And that, as Robert Mitchum and Santa alike can attest, is the real spirit of the season.
Turkey Hill Grade A Eggnog
Pictured: Back row, left
$2.49 for 1 quart
1/2 cup: 190 calories, 9 grams fat
The consensus among tasters is that this pasteurized, homogenized nog--which has rum flavoring (though not actual rum) and spices--is the standard against which all others should be judged. Our resident eggnog lover declared Turkey Hill her favorite.
Pictured: Back row, right
$2.49 for 1 quart
1/2 cup: 170 calories, 9 grams of fat
This lactose-free drink tasted more like vanilla pudding (or "pudding mix before it's puddi-fied," according to one taster) than eggnog. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. Said another, "It doesn't taste like eggnog, but it's good."
Pictured: Front row, middle
This O mag recipe was one of the simplest I found. I made a thin custard from cooked eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla and nutmeg; then, once it cooled, I stirred in whipped heavy cream. Some tasters liked the resulting froth, and one even said, "This tastes like a milkshake!" Conclusion: This is the eggnog for people who don't like eggnog.
The best drinks for dieters
7 ways to beat the Champagne price hike
A recipe for a better-for-you eggnog
"You call that a tree?!" Sure, you could spend the holidays waging these all-too-familiar wars, or you could read this article and learn how to avoid common fights.
Must-see photographs: Santa sightings from all over.
A grandmother's hip-hop Hanukkah, and three other radio stories for the festival of lights.
How we should all spend our retirements: These senior citizens must be the most joyful flash mob ever.
The Life-Lifter: After losing two of her children in a car wreck, one Ohio woman pays it forward with an online charitable exchange that connects families in need of help.
According to this AP article, Hall was forced to live a wealthy family's garage, without electricity, washing her clothes in a bucket, while their five children lived a normal life steps away. She was not allowed to attend school and worked full-time for two years before a suspicious neighbor called the police and she was rescued. (Read the entire article to find out what happened after she was rescued, and the amazing way she pulled herself out of her troubles.)
“No one really can tell you you can’t do that or you can’t be that
person,” she said after her citizenship ceremony. “I can be who I want
to be." Hall says that she doesn’t dwell on the past
and is focused on starting her career -- becoming a police officer or
immigration agent to help other victims of human trafficking. “Now
I can move on with my career and start my life the way I want it,” the
22-year-old said. “It’s just something
I’ve waited for for a long time.”
That's one Cinderella story worth retelling.
Not so, says Tony Schwartz, writing for the 99 Percent. Apparently, the way to accomplish more is to “pulse and pause,” taking breaks throughout the day to rest or refuel (some of his suggestions include going to the gym, taking an actual lunch break, and, my personal favorite, taking a quick nap). Schwartz writes, “Maintaining a steady reservoir of energy – physically, mentally, emotionally and even spiritually – requires refueling it intermittently.” Read the article for a run-down of the “law of diminishing returns” and how it effects the desk-bound work day, and as you blast through your holiday preparations, cooking, and all the rest, remember to “pause” now and then.
In 2012, you deserve better daily inspiration than the lifeless landscape on your dry cleaner’s free calendar, so we’ve rounded up some of the most delightful ways to track your days.
Woodland Papercuts 2012 Calendar, $35 Displayed as three individual papercut pages or layered to create one textured image, this calendar doubles as a delicate work of art.
On This Day Perpetual Calendar, $25 Rub one brightly-colored box each morning and uncover a quirky fact about that date.
Biko Perpetual Calendar Necklace, $69 An offbeat alternative to wall art, this brass pendant helps you determine the date from now through 2050.
Bubble Calendar, $20.12 Why should we only pop bubble wrap when we receive a package? This interactive calendar will let you enjoy the satisfying sensation all year long.
My father is the one who schooled me in the Way of the List, a gift passed down through the generations, from one indecisive Libra to another. His teachings essentially boil down to this basic tenant: any knotty decision, any kind of life-slump, can be combated with side-by-side lists of pros and cons. My old-fashioned father creates these lists on something called “paper,” but if he had an iPad I’m sure he would convert to the Unstuck App.
I approached this app with some cynicism. I believe
an app can balance my checkbook, plan my vacations, and teach my child to read,
but something as important and complex as make a decision? Please. In the
end, Unstuck delivers an organized way to pinpoint your problem, visualize it, and discover a solution. It's essentially a very cute (without being cutesy),
well-designed, portable therapist.
What I found most revealing about my Unstuck
experience, as in any good therapy session, was the questions the app asked. As I tried
to define what what was making me feel stuck, sorted out my “feelings cards,” and wrote
myself memos about my goals, I started to realize that what I thought was bothering me – my family’s current soul-sucking problem with clutter
and mess – was really just a symptom of larger issues (feeling overwhelmed and anxious about an upcoming change).
What's more, I realized I didn't even actually have a decision to make. The app informed me that in fact I was stuck because I didn't know where to start, and that I (an inveterate planner) didn't have a plan. Revelatory! It became a question of breaking down what I needed to do to dig out of the clutter. Best of all, Unstuck offers several different “tools,” or ways to unstick yourself from whatever your problem may be. It works for all the big decisions – jobs, relationships, outfits for holiday parties. And it’s free.
If only my father could use it to figure out whether or not
he should buy an iPad.
If you're dreaming of a white Christmas, Google Chrome is here to help.
Friends, talk, and the "ruined table': Anna Wintour's moving tribute to Christopher Hitchens.
These amazing photos capture the hottest event in fashion. Rabbit fashion, that is.
A simple, hearty dinner to last all week, so that you can get on to planning the big holiday meal.
The Life-Lifter: It's just that time of year: A little boy's beloved teddy bear is lost and, as result of heroic efforts, found again.