3 Keys to Becoming an Elite Athlete
When it comes to becoming an elite athlete, there are differing opinions on what it takes to win gold.
Sports analysts and commentators often reference sprint times, body weight, height or age as differentiating factors, but Dr. Steven Stein, CEO of Multi-Health Systems and emotional intelligence expert, has a different idea.
Emotional intelligence is a set of emotional and social skills that influence the way people perceive and express themselves, develop and maintain social relationships, cope with challenges and use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way.
Using The Emotional Quotient Inventory 2.0 model to test emotional intelligence, Multi-Health Systems found athletes around the world often score high in self-regard: the ability to know their strengths and weaknesses; self-actualization: doing what they love and continually trying to improve; and flexibility: their ability to learn, change and take direction.
Self-regard is the ability of an athlete to know his or her strengths and weaknesses. For elite athletes, it can also translate into confidence.
“Confidence, as part of self-regard, can be a key differentiator among medal winners,” Stein said. “At the highest level of many sports you have a number of athletes with near-equal skills and talent. Often, having the right mental toughness can make that millisecond or single point difference among judges.”
Self-actualization reflects comfort with who you are and what you are doing. For example, competition at the international level takes years of preparation and practice, and may require personal, social and familial sacrifices.
“Self-actualization allows an athlete to continue to learn and improve, as many athletes start out with a vision that helps define their passion,” Stein said. “For example, you frequently hear stories of athletes who come from challenging childhoods – deaths of parents, early injuries or difficulties with school – who commit fully to their sports, find success and go on to become role models for others in both athletics and overcoming adversity.”
Flexibility is a person’s ability to change and take direction, and for an elite athlete, it means learning from a bad performance instead of getting frustrated. It is one of the better predictors of the ability to be coached and succeed, and Multi-Health Systems found that it is especially important in both professional and amateur athletes.
“Sometimes, high-level draft picks in various sports who have difficulty taking instruction don’t make it as professional players,” Stein said. “Great athletes are often great learners, and when athletes think they already know what’s best or don’t listen to coaching, it can derail their performance.”
Learn more about emotional intelligence and the role the mental side plays in becoming an elite athlete at mhs.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Doubling Up on Denim
BY: SHARON MOSLEY
If dreary weather has you singing the blues, then change your tune and double up on denim.
A basic in many wardrobes, denim promises to make a fashion comeback this spring and summer. Wearing denim from head to toe is just one of the ways to rock a new look this year. Express your inner “jean-ius” with these denim style trends:
–Do the Canadian Tuxedo. Quick translation: wearing a jean jacket with jeans. Levi Strauss is credited with coming up with the “Canadian Tuxedo,” when it designed a denim tuxedo jacket for Bing Crosby, who was barred from a Vancouver hotel in 1951 for donning head-to-toe denim. Through the years, the double denim has received mixed reviews, but this year, designers and celebrities alike are embracing the trend once again. So, get out those denim jackets, pull on your favorite jeans and head out the door. Check out the Universal Thread collection at Target for inspiration of casual trucker jackets and distressed jeans. Or do double denim for work with Tom Ford’s sleek inky denim tailored jacket and boyfriend jeans.
–Get down to business. Tailored denim is receiving rave reviews this year, too. And the darker indigo washes are working hard to give denim a professional edge that can easily be worn to the office in suit-like separates. Think tailored, fitted jackets paired with high-waisted, straight-leg jeans or structured skirts. The shirt-dress is another classic for dressier occasions.
–Do the mom and pop thing. Another trend coming on strong, believe it or not, is the return of the mom jean and the dad jean. Rumors have been floating around for a few seasons that these relaxed looks are resurfacing, but now it’s official. When these jeans start hitting the fashion street scene, then the trend goes mainstream. Just take a peek at Levi’s website. Inspired by vintage high-waist jeans with relaxed waists and straight legs, these classics are back once again. Ditto for high-waisted Bermuda shorts. Expect to see them at a music festival near you.
–Get grungy. Remember the ’90s? Denim was washed with acid, flared and cropped, ripped and distressed. This season, grunge grows up…but not too much. The vintage flavor still lingers with flannel shirts and Doc Martens adding even more authenticity. With summer approaching, the fringed cut-off Daisy Dukes will be kicking up some fun. Ditto for miniskirts. Watch super-washed faded denim to be a warm-weather fashion favorite. (paige.com)
–Do get colorful. White jeans aren’t the only go-to option for spring and summer days anymore. There’s a rainbow of colors in denim collections this year. From candy-colored pastels to bolder, sunset hues, there’s no excuse for sticking to the “usual” jeans you’ve worn for years. Blast out of the blue zone and double up on a juicy color like the dark lemon jean jacket and matching jeans. (cottoncitizen.com)
–Do pay attention to the details. Get out of a blue jean “rut” and have some fun with your denim wardrobe. It’s easy to buy the same jeans over and over, year after year. This year, look for trendy extras to add a special touch to denim: bedazzled with crystals and beads; lace-trimmed hems or patchworked pieces. Side slits and frayed seams are other ways to dress up jeans. Double up on the details and you’ll double your summer fun.
BY: SHARON MOSLEY
When you wake up on March 20 and think “first day of spring,” then get up, put your tiara on and start celebrating…then think about what you’re going to wear! (Well, have your coffee first!) Here are a few ways to put some spring in your fashion step.
–Get organized. Spring cleaning is an annual rite in many homes, when the windows are thrown open and the fresh air blows away the winter blahs. And it’s a great time to think about cleaning out the closets, too. Even though you would rather be enjoying a cocktail on the beach, you can still put in a few minutes to rethink your wardrobe. If you haven’t worn that long wool coat in years, chances are you’re not going to wear it next fall. Give those oldies but goodies you rarely wear anymore away. If you do this every time the seasons change, you’ll stay ahead of the style game and you won’t find yourself totally overwhelmed.
–Then assess the situation. If you’re bored with your clothes and you find yourself in a fashion rut, then take a break and do a little reflection — meditate on what is missing from your closet. Do you need more dresses for special occasions? A comfortable outfit for work? Or a pair of killer heels? If you need help, peruse the blogosphere, scour retail sites on the internet or download a few style magazines. You’ll get plenty of inspiration right at the tips of your fingers.
–Make the transition. While the calendar may say spring has officially sprung, we all know that Mother Nature has a mind of her own. In other words, a blizzard may blow in at any minute after we’ve made the big closet switch from one season to another. That’s when layering comes in handy and we grab the boots again. The tank tops may not work on their own, but layered underneath sweaters and vests, they provide extra warmth. The latest anoraks, one of spring’s biggest outerwear trends, is another way to add a stylish layer to chase away the chills.
–Update with a surprise. After all, it’s a new season, and most of us are a little tired of the heavy coats and furry scarves we’ve been wrapped up in for the last few months. Concentrate on uncovering the tiara-wearing diva inside. Celebrate with eye-catching accessories, embellished sandals or a dress in a bold print. Bright colors are another way to update a drab winter wardrobe and take a spring break. Add a luscious lavender top, a turquoise blue bucket bag or a juicy orange trench coat.
–Go shopping. Think ahead to the spring and summer months. Do you plan on attending a wedding or graduation soon? Or do you need new beachwear for your summer travel wardrobe? Pick a trend that will fill in the missing blanks to the closet that you’ve just cleaned out, and see your attitude get a whole new lease on your fashion life. You may just need to replace those white jeans that aren’t so white anymore or that puffy coat that’s not so fluffy anymore…and you may find them on sale right now…now that’s a real spring fashion break.
Move More for a Healthy Heart
While heart health and how to prevent heart disease are important topics, many people in the United States – African Americans, in particular – remain at risk.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, African Americans ages 18-49 are almost twice as likely as Caucasians to die from heart disease. Additionally, about 33 percent of African Americans ages 35-49 and 61 percent ages 50-64 have high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for heart disease.
However, there are many ways for you to lower your risk for heart disease, and one of the most important is by becoming physically active. National guidelines recommend at least 2 hours, 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week for adults, like brisk walking where your blood gets pumping and you are a little breathless. If you find yourself short of time, you can incorporate physical activity in small chunks, such as three 10-minute intervals per day, and still achieve some heart health benefits.
How Moving More Helps
When done regularly, physical activity can give your entire body – not just your heart – a boost. Getting your heart rate up and breaking a sweat can:
* Strengthen heart muscles
* Improve blood flow
* Lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels
* Help control weight
Ways to Become More Active Every Day
In addition to working toward at least 150 minutes of physical activity each week, it’s important to avoid being sedentary, when possible. You can do that by making choices that build activity in your day. Some examples include:
* Taking the stairs
* Printing at the printer farthest from your desk at work.
* Getting off the bus one stop early
* Parking in the farthest space from the door
* Walking around while you are on the phone or having walking meetings
* Being active with your children, including playing outdoors
* Planning a vacation that includes physical activities
* Playing basketball or taking a yoga class with friends instead of meeting up for drinks or a meal
* Putting on some music and dancing
Check with Your Doctor
Certain physical activities are safe for most people. However, if you have a chronic health condition such as heart disease, arthritis or diabetes, talk with your doctor about the type and amount of physical activity that is right for your health.
Incorporating regular physical activity into your life can help your health in many ways, but it can be especially helpful for your heart. Find more heart-healthy facts and tips from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at nhlbi.nih.gov.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Source: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Fashion Trends For 2018
By: SHARON MOSLEY
Goodbye, millennial pink. Hello to a new passion for purple. It’s a new year and time to celebrate new fashion trends. Get ready to let a few feathers fly, belt on some fanny packs and see a rainbow or two.
Here’s a rundown on the newest ways to welcome in the new year in style:
Start with dark denim. Winter is the perfect time to transition into the darker side of the fashion moon with inky blue washes that dress up denim duds from head to toe. Do darker denim in tailored jackets, jeans, skirts and even accessories. Put a pair of dark denim pumps at the top of your “to-buy” list.
Let purple reign. After a year of red, lavender is letting loose…from pale lilacs to deep aubergines. And if you want to experience a little more glow, get your purples on with a metallic shine…another pair of purple pumps, please.
Make a rainbow connection. “Ultra violet” may be the “official” color of 2018, but purples are not the only colors beckoning … think of the colors of a rainbow and think of stripes. Rainbow stripes will be turning up in everything from dresses to tops to coats to handbags and shoes.
Invest in plastics. From rubber jackets to transparent boots and bags, plastic is squeaking onto the fashion scene in futuristic designs that give new meaning to high tech style. What to put on your spring shopping list? A giant plastic bangle or some space-age sneakers.
Sparkle all day. Think sequins are just for evening soirees? Not this year. Daytime embellishments are all the rage. Shiny metallics were the stars of this past holiday season. Watch for fringe and feathers to be stars of 2018, too. Luxurious extras are here to stay…day in and night out. And don’t be surprised if you see a satin track suit show up at a cocktail party near you!
Suit up. The pantsuit nation continues to unite women who are embracing matching suits in head-to-toe monochromatic color-blocking. Whether you prefer saturated brights or chic all white, skirt suit or pantsuit, a new suit needs to be on your shopping list in the coming year.
Stay in the trenches. When the winter freeze thaws, it’ll be time to bring on one of spring’s favorite coats…the trench coat. But this year, the trench coat is reimagined in beautiful fabrics like taffeta and dressed up with sheer sleeves and fringed hems. These new trench coats stand alone as style statements.
Prove it with prints. Just like denim, spring’s traditional florals get the darker treatment with an edgier vibe worthy of wallpaper botanicals. Plaids lighten up in checks and tartans. And whimsical graphic prints take fashion to a whole new level of fun. And after all, isn’t that the best way to dress in for a whole new year?
Simple Solutions to Combat Winter Skin Sensitivity
The winter season is here, and it’s important to get in the habit of taking care of your skin. Cold weather brings low humidity levels and dry air, which can suck the moisture from your skin, and without proper care, skin can become dry, cracked and irritated, causing discomfort.
This winter, focus on a regimen that helps protect and hydrate skin so you can spend time enjoying the benefits of winter like family game night, snow days and snuggling by the fire.
Prepare your family for cold weather with these simple tips that can be easily incorporated into your family’s daily routine, keeping skin feeling soft and healthy all winter long.
Hydrate Inside and Out. Staying hydrated during the hot, summer months is a given, but it is also important to remember that cold winter air can leave your skin parched. Use a humidifier to keep skin hydrated during the dry months and be sure to lather on moisturizer. Natural moisturizers like coconut oil and shea butter can act as protective barriers against harsh elements, sealing in moisture. In addition to hydrating on the outside, it is just as important to stay hydrated on the inside. By drinking water throughout the day, your skin can stay healthy and moisturized.
Switch to a Mild Laundry Detergent. Many common detergents can be abrasive to sensitive skin, especially when it is more vulnerable to irritation during the harsh winter months. Wash bed linens, towels and clothes with a mild detergent like all Free Clear year-round, especially during the winter months. As the No. 1 recommended detergent brand by dermatologists, allergists and pediatricians for sensitive skin, all Free Clear includes no dyes, fragrances or irritating residues. Using the power of stainlifters to fight tough stains, it is also safe for the whole family to use, keeping laundry clean while being gentle on skin.
Avoid Toxins, Specifically Allergens and Irritants. Products that contain toxins, allergens and irritants should be avoided during months when skin is most sensitive. Choose moisturizers and skin care products that don’t contain common irritants, and opt for mild cleansers and moisturizers that are specifically labeled for sensitive skin. Castor oil is another moisturizer alternative that is natural and can be used on both the face and body.
Layer Up. Lock in moisture and protect your skin from wind, rain and snow by wearing layers whenever you venture outside. The skin on your neck, face and hands is thinner than other areas of the body and therefore more sensitive to the effects of winter weather. Thermals, scarves and gloves can keep you warm and protect your skin from the cold, dry air. For those with sensitive skin, avoid synthetic fabrics and itchy materials like wool, and wash clothes with a dermatologist-recommended detergent like all Free Clear.
By implementing these best practices for skin sensitivity, you can minimize redness, dryness and discomfort to help skin stay healthy and glowing throughout the winter season. Visit all-laundry.com to learn more.
Sponsored by ‘all
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
DIY Holiday Home Decor
The holiday season can get expensive, especially when purchasing thoughtful gifts for loved ones. The last thing you want to spend money on is generic holiday decorations that don’t make your home stand out from the rest.
Creating unique, do-it-yourself decorations is an activity that can help you bond with family and friends, but also give your home decor a fun, seasonal twist.
The experts at Krazy Glue suggest these festive DIY crafts that can get your home prepped for the holiday season without breaking the bank.
Statement Centerpiece: A staple of holiday home decor is selecting the perfect centerpiece for your table. Most people defer to flowers or generic baubles that can be overlooked, but you can make your table stand out with a festive tree made of common utensils. Grab some silver spoons, metallic spray paint, a plastic foam cone and an adhesive to create a DIY centerpiece.
Festive Front Door: When guests arrive at your home for the holidays, one of the first things they see is the front door. While it’s easy to go out and buy a pre-made wreath at the store, creating a unique, holiday-themed option is simple, budget-friendly and fun.
If you have clothespins lying around the house, repurpose them into something creative and beautiful this year. Create this one of a kind Metallic Clothespin Wreath with metallic spray paint, mini clothespins, a flat wooden wreath form and a strong adhesive. Simply spray-paint the clothespins different metallic shades and glue them to the wooden wreath frame in different layers once dry.
To help make the wreath and other DIY projects shine, it’s important to have a strong adhesive that can withstand the test of time. Just a single drop of Krazy Glue can hold up to 2,000 pounds and only takes 30 seconds to dry. It’s a perfect tool to have in your home for any holiday DIY projects or quick fixes that may arise.
Deck the Walls: There’s no need to stop the holiday decorations at your table and front door. Keep your walls festive by hanging some holiday themed decorations such as homemade snowflakes. All you need is plywood molding and pieces of thin balsa wood, a circular medallion, spray paint in your colors of choice and a strong adhesive.
Find more holiday DIY projects at krazyglue.com.
Metallic Clothespin Wreath
Supplies and Tools:
350-375 mini clothespins
Gold spray paint
Silver spray paint
Flat wood wreath form
Krazy Glue Maximum Bond
Divide clothespins into two sections. Spray-paint one section gold and one section silver; let dry.
Turn clothespins over and spray-paint other sides. Spray-paint wood wreath form silver; let dry.
Beginning in center of wreath form, glue circle of gold clothespins to wood wreath form; let glue dry.
Add layer of silver clothespins to inside of wreath. Attach pins by clipping onto first row of gold clothespins. Glue in place and let glue dry.
Add another layer of silver clothespins to inside of wreath. Attach pins by clipping onto first row of silver clothespins. Glue in place and let glue dry.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Source: Krazy Glue
Get your glow on. The holidays are time to shine with sparkling fashion that lights up the party scene. So, get ready to put on the glitz. Here are the season’s top favorite ways to brighten up your festive wardrobe in a flash.
–Seek out the sequins. Of course, these little shiny decorative danglers have come a long way from their original Indian origins 3000 years ago. But today, metal sequins have morphed into all kinds of innovative plastic disks that swing and sway on everything from sweatshirts to evening gowns. The popularity of all this shimmer never seems to dim. At the recent American Music Awards show, stars rocked the shiny stuff…from Tracie Ellis Ross’s sequined jumpsuit and boots (borrowed from her Mom Diana Ross’s closet) to Heidi Klum’s floor-length rainbow striped sequined evening gown.
–Apply for your patents. Sequins may only be one way to shine this holiday season, but they are not the only way to get your glow on. Glossy patent leathers are finding their way into our party wardrobes in everything from trench coats to knee-high boots. These coated leathers turn up in fashionese as “liquid” leather, “lacquered” leather and the imitation plastic leather, “pleather.” The perfect holiday coverup? How about a red lacquered coated anorak from 3.1Phillip Lim?
–Make a foil of yourself. There’s a new denim game in town, and it’s “foiled” jeans. Shiny leather gold or silver gets transferred right onto denim to instantly update basic jeans or jeggings…perfect for glamming up a holiday outfit. Jean jackets that get the foil treatment are also a new way to give your casual party clothes a new lease on life. Check them out at your favorite retailers from Lane Bryant to Gap to Versace, where even the guys will find gold-foiled floral print T-shirts.
–Weave it in. Another way to shine for the holidays is to wear knits with metallic yarns woven in. The “Lurex,” the brand name of The Lurex Company, Ltd., has been known for over 60 years for its glittering fibers of glittering plasticized yarns that weave their way through all kinds of stylish clothes and accessories for the whole family. Designers regularly use Lurex in their collections, and it crops up especially at holiday time in sweaters, dresses and even blazers. This season, check it out in glittery boot socks from Hunter Boots — a great gift item.
–Sparkle with jewels. Of course, this one’s a no-brainer! But it may be one of the easiest ways to get your holiday glow on. Pearls are one of the season’s most subtle ways to add a little shimmer — in choker necklaces, long pendants or stitched right onto collars and cuffs. Crystals are always party poppers…this season in giant chandelier earrings or rock size rings. The celestial themes are playing starring roles this year. Check out all the fun constellation pieces at Bauble Bar.
–Sprinkle some glitter on your face. Gloss is boss, and not just in your clothes, but on your face, too. Put your best party face forward with shimmer and shine in swooshes of highlighter on your cheeks. Add some pink gloss to your lips and finish off your eyes with a surprise dash of glitter. It’s all at Topshop, even the “Disco Ball” eyeshadow. Now that’s a holiday party!
COPYRIGHT 2017 CREATORS.COM
Picking Perfect Holiday Presents
Gift-giving season is a time that’s special for many families and friends, and it’s the perfect opportunity to show the loved ones in your life just how much you appreciate them.
However, it isn’t always easy to pick out the perfect present, especially with so many options available. When you’re stuck in a gifting rut, turn to the professionals, like those at Macy’s, to help you choose just the right gifts for everyone on your list.
“The holidays are a celebratory time when loved ones can come together and show how much they appreciate having each other in their lives,” said Cassandra Jones, senior vice president of Macy’s Fashion. “I truly believe that the perfect gift can bring people together. To enhance that experience for our customers, we’ve created an unparalleled assortment of gift-giving items, from tech to beauty, so that each present is the perfect one.”
Find more gift ideas for the holiday season at macys.com/gifts.
If you’re struggling to find just the right idea for the lady on your list, don’t take a chance on any random beauty product. Instead, give the beauty lover in your life the gift of options with a Macy’s Beauty Box subscription. For $15 a month, she’ll receive five deluxe beauty samples selected by experts, plus a bonus sample and a $5 coupon to use in-store or online on her next beauty purchase.
Interactive technology helps get kids off the couch and provides them nearly endless entertainment. Give the children on your gift list the opportunity to dance their way to fun with a piano mat from FAO Schwarz. The 24 keys work just like a real piano, which allows for playing the included selections or creating your own works of musical art. Included with the mat are selections such as Beethoven’s “5th Symphony,” “Chopsticks,” “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” and more.
Help him revamp his style in one easy step with a Sprezza Box, which makes it simple to add something new and coordinated to his wardrobe. Available in four distinct boxes curated by experts, each contains five items, including accessories such as ties, pocket squares, socks, sunglasses, wallets and money clips. Each box evokes a specific look and feel. Just pick the right one to match your gift list so you can add something new to his style.
For the Home
The natural interior decorator on your list likely loves the unique touch of comforting pillows throughout living rooms and dens. Let him or her cuddle up to the cozy style of this decorative pillow from the Martha Stewart Collection, featuring a festive color palette and polar bear perfect for the holiday season. At 18 inches-by-18 inches, it’s the ideal size for curling up on the couch during a chilly day.
Searching for a gift for the natural entertainer in your life can be difficult if common items like wine glasses and electric bottle openers are already accounted for. An option like a bar cart from Hotel Collection can help make entertaining a breeze for that person on your list who enjoys hosting. With three shelves and wheels for easy transportation, it’s ideal for extravagant parties, small get-togethers or anything in-between.
For the Kitchen
Gourmet gift baskets from Di Bruno Bros. are sure to make an impression for home chefs who might need a little inspiration. Choose a curated basket filled with a wide variety of specialty foods and products hand-selected for top quality. Themes include options like this “Sriracha Foodie,” which comes packed with snacks, toppings and sauces infused with fiery Asian chili flavor in sweet jerky, pickles, gourmet salt, tortilla chips, horseradish sauce, mayonnaise, peachy jam and classic sriracha.
Color Tricks for A Fashion Treat
How about treating yourself to a few tricks of the fashion trade just by coloring your wardrobe world in a whole new way? You may be stuck in a black hole or blazing into red hot territory, but if you really want to make the most out of what you wear any time of the year, then use these tips to turn those scary old clothes into “bootiful” new treats.
–Orange is not the new black. Yes, there are some colors that may make you look bigger, and one of them is that Halloween favorite… orange. Just remember that before you and Charlie Brown get too excited about the Great Pumpkin costume. And forget about pink and all its bubblegum smacking friends. Ditto for lime green, yellow and, well…you get my drift…all those wonderful, spooky colors that seem to pop up this time of year. If you want to lose a few pounds, stick to your broomstick and insist on wearing black. It’s always figure flattering, no matter where you fly.
–Put it in neutral. Let’s face it: black, brown, navy and gray are the basics in most of our wardrobes, and these dark colors can be instantly slimming and sophisticated when worn from head to toe. But they can also get a little boring. To liven things up, consider mixing neutral colors in different textures to update separates – lacquered leathers and liquid velvets are two of this season’s biggest treats.
–Get dramatic with color. While wearing all black can be dramatic (especially at this bewitching time of year), consider stepping out of your comfort zone and going even bolder. Red, of course, is this fall’s favorite, and can be stunning in a long, flowing maxi dress (seen at Ralph Lauren). But so can a cobalt blue suit (a la Michael Kors). The darker jewel tones like burgundy, emerald and sapphire are always more figure friendly than acid brights.
–Layer up. Another way to use color to “trick” the eye is to layer lighter, brighter colors on top of darker separates. Wearing darker trousers, tees or sweaters under more colorful jackets and coats creates a slimming illusion that also translates into a versatile “uniform” kind of dressing. Choose a neutral palette of wardrobe basics and add pops of color with statement outerwear.
–Highlight your best assets. Color can obviously be used to your best advantage to flatter your body, no matter what shape it’s in. If you want to downplay the top half, wear darker colors in blouses or sweaters and lighten up on the bottom half; and vice versa to minimize large hips or thighs. And if you’re wearing a belt, make sure it’s in the same color family as your outfit, or you may find yourself cut right in two…a look only reserved for Halloween.
–Print it. Loud prints come by their name naturally. You can see those huge, tropical flowers coming two blocks away. And this year, there are lots of floral and animal prints, sizzling stripes and plaid patterns vying for our attention. For most of us, it’s best to pick a print that’s small in scale on a dark background for the most flattering results. Leave the huge orange and yellow tiger prints for Halloween.
–Channel Mother Nature. When in doubt about what colors “go” with other colors in your closet, just look outside. There is plenty of inspiration wherever you are…the undulating blues and greens of the ocean, the reds, golds and greens of autumn leaves and the pinks, reds and purples of early sunsets. There’s not a better teacher than Mother Nature herself when it comes to creating color combinations outdoors that you can treat yourself to everyday.
COPYRIGHT 2017 CREATORS.COM
The Soft Side of Fall Fashion
With the arrival of fall, our homes are brimming over with scented candles and fuzzy blankets, and now our closets are ready for a dose of friendly comfort, too. Think “Hygge.” It’s the trendy Scandinavian word that’s perfect for describing the way we all want to dress when leaves start to fall and fires start crackling.
The Oxford Dictionary defines hygge (pronounced HUE gah) as “a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).” And what better way to snuggle into a new season than to embrace the relaxed spirit of hygge?
Take a cue from Lands’ End, the Wisconsin-based retailer who recently launched “The Art of Cozy,” a new leisure collection that celebrates the hygge movement and features easy-to-wear clothes in the softest of fabrics.
“As lifestyles continue to evolve, so does fashion,” says Chieh Tsai, senior vice president of design for Lands’ End. “Today, women want to look stylish while being comfortable and have truly embraced a cozy, carefree approach to getting dressed each day,” she adds.
Here’s how you can get comfy and put some hygge into your own wardrobe this fall:
–Start at the top. The plush life begins with soft sweaters. The hottest fashion statements are the chunky turtlenecks, but cowl neck pull-overs, tunics and long cable-knit cardigans are all vying for attention. These knit tops can be the most versatile pieces in your wardrobe easily mixing with casual jeans, leggings and even tailored trousers for the office. Swap out a traditional blazer for a boucle drape front “waterfall” cardigan to bring a little hygge to your workplace.
–Invest in a fleece vest. The down “puffer” vest is still a fall favorite that warms up the coldest of days without the bulk of a coat. But this fall, the softer side to take is the soft quilted fleece vest. A little lighter, but much more comfortable, especially on those autumn days when chilly mornings turn into warmer afternoons. Fleece pullovers are other cozy options that can be layered under down vests when extra warmth is needed.
–Add a lightweight jacket. Yes, even outerwear has gone soft this fall. French terry hoodies and bomber jackets are cozy favorites for men; and for women, the latest pea coats feature brushed wool fabrics that have a velvety feel to them. In mint green, they’re a delicious treat for the lighter side of fall.
Sweater “coats” are other third-layer alternatives to heavy jackets – the longer the better this fall. In luxurious cashmere, these kimono-inspired knits will provide plenty of those special hygge moments from the minute you put them on.
–Pull on your pajama pants. But not just any pajama pants. This fall, the comfort factor extends to all kinds of easy-to-wear pants that are anything but sloppy. Meant-to-be-seen joggers, sweatpants, jeggings and of course, leggings, are all basic must-haves in the cozy hygge wardrobe.
–Dress to impress. You don’t have to worry about leaving the plush life behind at home, either. Slip into a merino wool cable knit sweater dress that you can rock day and night. Then wrap up in an oversized plaid blanket scarf for even more style out on the street. When you get to the office, light a pumpkin spice candle, relax and breathe in all the comfort of a new fall day.
(SET IMAGE) smo100317adAP.jpg (END IMAGE) (SET CAPTION) Embrace comfort clothes this fall in the spirit of hygge with the “Art of Cozy” collection from Lands’ End. www.landsend.com. (END CAPTION)
To find out more about Sharon Mosley, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT CREATORS 2017
7 Ways to Help Hurricane Victims
Photos courtesy of Getty Images
Natural disasters come in multiple forms and can quickly devastate many lives in a matter of moments. While they all can cause nightmares for those affected, few are as powerful and destructive as hurricanes.
That’s why, when hurricanes make landfall and wreak havoc, help is immediately needed and accepted by the people and communities impacted the most. Here are a few ways you can make a positive impact for those affected by natural disasters, specifically hurricanes:
Start a Fundraiser
One of the most potentially impactful ways to lend a hand after a natural disaster is to start a community fundraiser. This can be as simple as an online account accepting donations for a group of people and sending a large sum to a relief organization, or as thought-out as a large-scale event, like a raffle or dinner, accepting donations for entry.
Money is typically the resource relief organizations can use the most during natural disasters, and it can also be the easiest way for people to lend aid. There are typically many trustworthy organizations available to donate to during times of need.
Promote Fundraising Efforts
After you’ve made a donation yourself, spread the word to others whether it’s via word of mouth, social media or other forms of communication. Let friends and family know how they can join the cause.
While it isn’t viable for everyone, some people closer to the affected region can directly help those in need with physical help at the place it’s most needed. Whether it’s passing out supplies, serving food to those displaced or other means of lending a hand, volunteers are a valuable resource following natural disasters.
Another option for people looking to help who are closer to the devastation is to offer shelter, especially if they have family members or friends who have been affected. Assisting at places sheltering the displaced is another way to provide help, if offering space in your home is not an option.
Injuries can be unavoidable when hurricanes and other disasters strike. One way to help those hospitalized or otherwise injured is to donate blood, possibly saving lives in the process.
In the immediate aftermath of storms and natural disasters, the news cycle is dominated by stories of triumph and despair, and by ways people can help. However, the storm is eventually overshadowed by other, more recent news. One major way people can help after a hurricane is by continuing their support long after the storm has passed, as those affected will need assistance, supplies and donations for much longer than just a couple of weeks after the incident. As time passes, it can be helpful to continue donating money and supplies, committing to helping physically rebuild structures and promoting fundraising efforts.
Find more ways to help those in need at eLivingToday.com.
Staying Safe Through a Hurricane
While the immense power of hurricanes and tropical storms can greatly affect the lives of many in an instant, there are ways to increase your safety before, during and after the storm. These tips from the American Red Cross can help protect yourself and your family.
* Put together an emergency kit, including basic but crucial items such as: water, food, a first aid kit, cell phones with chargers, contact information for family and friends, flashlights, extra batteries, medications, radios, copies of key personal documents, extra cash and maps.
* Working with your family, create an evacuation plan for your home. This includes discussing how to prepare and respond to emergencies, identifying the responsibilities of each person in the home and practicing the plan.
* As a storm is approaching, stay tuned to local radio or TV stations for the latest updates.
* Be prepared to evacuate quickly, and ensure that your emergency kit and other necessities are ready.
* Stay inside.
* If power is lost, use flashlights in the dark rather than candles.
* If possible, keep radio or TV stations tuned in for any new or developing information.
* Because waters could be contaminated with sewage or contain other dangerous substances, avoid contact with floodwater.
* If instructed to do so by local authorities, shut off the power and water mains.
* If you must be outdoors, don’t walk, swim or drive through floodwater. Don’t walk on beaches or riverbanks, and don’t allow children to play in or near floodwater.
* Stay out of areas subject to flooding, such as underpasses, dips and low spots.
* If you must drive and are caught on a flooded road with rising waters, get out of the car and move to higher ground.
* Communicate with family and friends to let them know you’re safe.
* If you are evacuated, don’t return until authorities confirm it is safe to do so.
* Continue listening to radio or TV stations for new or developing information.
* Be prepared for continued rainfall and additional flooding.
* Don’t use water that could be contaminated.
* If possible, help friends, family and neighbors who require assistance, especially the elderly, people without transportation, large families and people with disabilities.
* When returning home, stay away from buildings that have water around them.
* Stay away from dangling power lines and report them to power companies.
* For insurance purposes, take pictures of home and item damage.
* When cleaning your home, wear protective clothing like rubber gloves and boots, and be cautious.
* Inquire with professionals to check for roof damage and other more technical tasks.
Best Bets for Back to School
Every family needs the right items on hand to ensure students are geared up to succeed in the classroom and on the playing field. These supplies and handy tools are designed to make back-to-school season easy as 1-2-3 for kids and parents alike.
A sticky solution
Art projects abound when a new school year begins and the perfect paper crafts require a secure bond that withstands transportation from school to home. An Elmer’s Re-Stick Glue Stick lets little hands fine-tune placement of different pieces for up to five minutes before a permanent bond forms. The sticks apply smoothly and dry clear for a mess-free appearance that is ideal for younger learners, as well as making poster presentations, crafts and more. See what ideas will stick for you at elmers.com.
Good hydration is important for overall health and keeping a water bottle by your side is one way to help ensure you’re keeping your intake steady throughout the day. The Contigo AUTOSPOUT Chug Water Bottle enables simple sipping on the go with its patented technology and high flow for quick, one-handed drinking. The vacuum-insulated stainless steel keeps beverages refreshingly cold for up to 24 hours, and a protective spout prevents leaks and helps keep out dirt and germs. Find more information at gocontigo.com.
From creating spaces at home that help organize school paperwork to identifying personal items like laptops or calculators, an electric labeler makes short work of the job. The DYMO MobileLabeler offers Bluetooth connectivity for fast and easy setup, along with a voice-to-text feature and spellcheck to help save time. A free app lets you create the label via a smartphone using a wide variety of colors and font libraries then print the size you need from 1/4 inch-1 inch wide. Learn more at dymo.com.
Organize with color
Keeping track of schedules, homework and other activities can be an exhausting chore, but a color-coded dry-erase board is one way to keep everything straight. A highly visible, low-odor ink like the one used in the EXPO Dry Erase Markers with Ink Indicator makes getting organized fun, plus the easy-to-see ink levels ensures you’ll never unknowingly run dry. The versatile chisel tip marks broad, medium and fine lines, and six bold and bright colors let you add a little creative flair to your efforts to bring order to the chaos. Check out these and other dry-erase tools at expomarkers.com.
A cool way to refuel
A rigorous morning of academics calls for an energizing and nutritious lunch to power through the end of the school day. Rubbermaid BRILLIANCE Lunch containers are leak-proof with airtight latches and adjustable insert trays and dividers to create custom compartments inside. The ultra-durable material keeps the container stain-free and odor-free. They’re also BPA-free and safe for the dishwasher, microwave and freezer. Find this and other lunch solutions at rubbermaid.com.
Artwork for the senses
Nothing sparks creativity like engaging all the senses, and an array of bold scents and vivid colors is the perfect combination for some inspired artwork. Mr. Sketch Scented Crayons come in a package of 12 and feature a twist design that means they never need sharpening. A hard plastic body reduces crayon breakage, making these instruments ideal for children as young as 3 years of age. Explore more crayons and tools to encourage creativity this school year at mrsketch.com.
A bright idea
Defining important text or keeping track of key calendar dates is easier with Sharpie Clear View Highlighters that feature a see-through tip that allows for precise highlighting. The versatile blade-style tip draws thick lines for highlighting or thin, defined lines for underlining, while specially formulated ink technology resists smudging of many pen and marker inks. Choose among four bright colors to make your mark and find additional answers to your highlighting needs at sharpie.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (children at school)