Holiday recipes worth sharing
Most great holiday gatherings start with great food and end with quality time spent with loved ones. This holiday season, rely on simple recipes that let you spend less time in the kitchen and more time celebrating special moments with family and friends.
As a holiday host, it may be tempting to explore complicated new recipes to lend a festive air to your seasonal celebrations. However, with the right ingredients, a simple recipe can be equally impressive. Delicious holiday dishes start with premium ingredients like Bertolli Olive Oils, which offer enough versatility to be a must-have kitchen accessory throughout the holiday season and onward. From soups to main dishes to desserts, the rich, quality flavor works for nearly every culinary occasion.
After a long day of checking items off your holiday shopping list, there’s almost nothing better than a warm bowl of quick and easy Rustic Minestrone. This vegetarian classic is the perfect mix of marinara blended with aged cheeses, kale, zucchini and beans. One of the best parts: It can be on the table in 10 minutes, meaning less time cooking and more time spent stringing up holiday lights with family.
If you’re looking for a simple way to put a new twist on your turkey, take it to the next level with a seasonal brine made with sweet Riesling, garlic cloves, thyme, fresh cranberries and olive oil. It’s a hands-off way to make a tried-and-true dish a little more special.
Finally, when it’s time to wind down the evening, delight guests by bringing back a classic dessert: chocolate chip banana bread. Served slightly warm with a side of fresh whipped cream or vanilla bean ice cream, it’s a sweet finish to any gathering that family and friends are sure to love.
Find more simple recipes to enjoy during the holidays at Bertolli.com.
3 tablespoons Bertolli Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
1 small zucchini, sliced in 1/2-inch half moons
2 cups tightly packed, thinly sliced Tuscan kale leaves
1 jar (23 ounces) Bertolli Rustic Cut Three Cheese with Aged Asiago, Romano and Parmesan Sauce
1 carton (32 ounces) vegetable broth
1 can (15 ounces) cannellini beans, rinsed
1/3 cup shaved Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
In 6-quart pot over medium-high heat, heat 2 teaspoons oil. Add zucchini and kale; cook, stirring frequently, about 1-2 minutes, or until kale begins to wilt. Reduce heat to medium; add sauce, broth and beans. Simmer 5-7 minutes, or until heated. Top with shaved cheese before serving.
Tips: Substitute garbanzo beans, kidney beans, pinto beans or tri-bean blend for cannellini beans. For heartier soup, add 3 cups (9 ounces) refrigerated tortellini pasta with broth and beans. Simmer soup 8-10 minutes more, or until pasta is cooked through.
Chocolate Chunk Banana Bread
Recipe courtesy of Justin Schuble on behalf of Bertolli Olive Oil
3/4 cup Bertolli Olive Oil, plus additional for coating pan
3 ripe medium bananas, divided
1/2 cup applesauce
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips
1/4 cup nut spread
Heat oven to 350 F.
Coat 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with olive oil.
In mixing bowl, mash 2 bananas. Add applesauce, egg, egg white and vanilla to bananas and whisk.
In separate bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Slowly add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix. Add olive oil slowly and mix until combined.
Fold in chocolate chunks. Pour batter into loaf pan.
Heat nut spread in microwave until it reaches pourable consistency. Swirl spread into top of batter. Thinly slice long, flat strips of banana. Add slices to top of batter for decoration.
Place loaf pan in oven and bake 1 hour. Remove bread and cool before slicing.
Cranberry Riesling Brined Turkey
1 quart water
6 bay leaves
2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
1 1/2 cups kosher salt
1 bottle (750 milliliters) Riesling wine
2 large shallots, thinly sliced, divided
8 cloves garlic, crushed but left in skins
1 bunch fresh thyme, divided
2 cups fresh cranberries, slightly crushed, divided
1 turkey (16 pounds), giblet package and neck removed
ice water, for covering turkey
1/2 cup Bertolli Mild Olive Oil
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
In pot, bring water, bay leaves, peppercorns, mustard seeds and kosher salt to boil. Stir until salt is dissolved. Cool to room temperature.
Pour brine into 5-gallon stock pot or container. Pour in wine then add one shallot, garlic, thyme (reserving some for stuffing turkey) and 1 cup cranberries. Slowly lower in turkey.
Pour ice water into pot to cover turkey. Place lid on pot and refrigerate at least 24 hours.
Heat oven to 500 F. Remove turkey from brine, pat dry and stuff with reserved shallot, thyme and cranberries.
Place turkey in roasting pan. Generously massage olive oil into skin of turkey. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste. Use kitchen twine to tie legs together so turkey will keep its shape. Place in roasting pan and roast 20 minutes. Lightly brush skin again with olive oil, reduce heat to 350 F and roast until internal temperature reaches 155-160 F on meat thermometer.
Allow turkey to rest, loosely covered with foil, 30 minutes before carving.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Cranberry Riesling Brined Turkey)
Light Bites for Healthier Holidays
For those who are always on the go leading up to the holidays, the season can feel more like madness than merrymaking. From planning get-togethers to building out a perfect menu for the events, there can be difficulties for hosts and guests alike to ensure proper nutrition is still top of mind.
Instead of sacrificing taste or eating less, aim for simple changes that give you the energy to power through the busy season. For example, instead of opting for a carb-loaded breakfast in the morning, try a low-carb Milk Chocolate Protein Muffin, which takes just a few minutes of prep and microwave time. The quick cook time leaves you with ample opportunities to run errands or divvy up precious seconds toward other activities, while the protein can fuel you for the day ahead.
Almost nothing beats warm soup on a chilly day, and this Butternut Squash and Pear Soup provides feel-good flavor without weighing you down. Finally, when snacks are on the mind – as it tends to happen when constantly on the go – Coconut Muesli Clusters are simple to make and won’t undo the nutritious efforts you’ve made throughout the day.
This full menu of tasty recipes is part of the Atkins low-carb lifestyle, a long-term, healthy eating approach focused on high-fiber carbohydrates, optimal protein and healthy fats. The plan also aims to reduce levels of refined carbohydrates, added sugars and the “hidden sugar effect,” – when carbohydrates convert to sugar when digested. You don’t see the sugar, but your body does.
Find more ways to live healthier during the holidays and learn more about the benefits of a balanced, low-carb lifestyle at Atkins.com.
Milk Chocolate Protein Muffin
Recipe courtesy of Atkins
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 1 minute
2 tablespoons full-fat cream cheese
3 tablespoons Atkins Milk Chocolate Protein Powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 dash salt
In microwave-safe mug, heat cream cheese 10-15 seconds to soften. Add egg and blend briskly using fork. Add protein powder, baking powder, cinnamon and salt; blend until smooth.
Microwave on high 1 minute; muffin will puff up then deflate slightly once done. Remove from mug and enjoy warm.
Coconut Muesli Clusters
Recipe courtesy of “Atkins: Eat Right, Not Less”
Active time: 10 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
Olive oil spray
1 cup plain protein powder
1/2 cup unsalted sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1 cup whole raw pecans
1 cup unsweetened whole flake shredded coconut
1/2 cup chia seeds or ground flaxseeds
1 tablespoon stevia
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/4 cup water
Heat oven to 350 F. Line large baking sheet with parchment paper, coat with olive oil spray and set aside.
In large bowl, mix together protein powder, sunflower or pumpkin seeds, pecans, coconut, chia seeds or flaxseeds, stevia, cinnamon and turmeric.
In large skillet, combine coconut oil, peanut butter and vanilla extract; melt completely then stir in nut mixture. Turn heat off and add eggs and water, tossing well. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and spread mixture in layer about 1/2-inch thick.
Bake 10-15 minutes until mixture starts to brown and clumps together to make clusters. Cool completely on baking sheet then store in airtight container, refrigerated, up to 1 week.
An On-the-Go Energy Boost
As a hectic holiday season unfolds, it can be difficult to maintain energy while making dishes for get-togethers and keeping up with the festivities.
To stay fueled and energized throughout the season, try incorporating Atkins Plus Protein and Fiber Shakes. Sweet and creamy, they make for ideal snacks, containing 30 grams of high-quality dairy protein and 7 grams of fiber. To help ensure steady blood sugar levels, the shakes also have a low glycemic impact and are made with 20 vitamins and minerals.
Available in Creamy Milk Chocolate and Creamy Vanilla flavors, the ready-to-drink shakes provide hunger satisfaction for those who are on the go and seeking to maximize production with a busy schedule.
Butternut Squash and Pear Soup
Recipe courtesy of Atkins
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 medium (2 1/2-inch diameter) onion, chopped
2 pounds butternut winter squash, cubed
1 medium pear, sliced, plus additional, for garnish (optional)
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
5 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup heavy cream
In large pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add onions and saute until translucent, about 6 minutes. Add squash, pear, curry powder, salt and white pepper; saute 3 minutes.
Increase heat to high and add chicken broth. Bring to boil then reduce heat to low; simmer 20-25 minutes, uncovered, until cubed squash is very tender. Allow to cool about 10-15 minutes.
In blender or food processor, puree soup in batches until smooth. Return pureed soup to pot and add lemon juice and heavy cream. Stir soup over low heat until hot. Garnish with additional sliced pears and sprinkle of nutmeg, if desired.
Sweater Weather: Five Sweaters to Own This Fall
BY SHARON MOSLEY
Time to get cozy! Sweater weather is sending chills down our spines and right into our toes. This fall, the best knit hits are bold and beautiful, in colorful patterns and chic shapes. Here are five sweaters to collect now:
–The Sweater Jacket. This all-purpose knit bridges the gap between heavy coats and light cardigans … perfect for transitioning into winter wardrobes. This fall, sweater jackets are statement pieces in multipatterned florals, plaids and stripes. Don’t be afraid to experiment with the new oversized trend. A little extra room allows for more warmth and layering.
–The Embellished Cardigan. Whether it’s the subtle shine of sequins, puffy pompoms or whimsical folkloric embroidery, the classic cardigan is anything but classic this year. Party-ready sweaters are dancing their way into daytime dress and are versatile solutions to the dilemma of what to wear after work to holiday events. Ruffled fronts and bell sleeves add even more festive touches. For a trendy update, cinch a cardigan with a skinny belt.
–The Textured Turtleneck. The basic turtleneck has long been a staple for fall and winter. It’s a basic layering piece that you should stock up on in various weights and colors. Cashmere is always a good thing. And a black turtleneck has long been a go-to for the cool crowd. But the turtleneck can also transform a work wardrobe when teamed with skirts or menswear trousers in flattering textured ribbed knits. For weekends, choose a colorful striped turtleneck. And if you want to change up the traditional turtleneck, then look for a drapey cowl neck that can be worn pulled down off the shoulders. Cold-shoulder turtlenecks are another way to update this basic sweater.
–The Ski Sweater. Think retro vintage Fair Isle patterns from the 1960s, when this sporty sweater was an apres-ski favorite. These Nordic-inspired designs are once more taking on the slopes — as well as the fashion runways — in multicolored soft knits that are often paired with jeans and hiking boots to add more down-to-earth style. Ditto for varsity argyle sweaters with the same prepster vibe. Sit by a toasty fire and sip a hot toddy. You’ll instantly get that cozy hygge feeling.
–The Slouchy Knit. It’s all about fluff this year, and the fuzzy knit sweaters are like furry cocoons that envelope you in luxury on the coldest of days. Choose a fuzzy sweater in one of the season’s newest hues: burnt orange, teal blue or scarlet. Or you can opt for a red-hot animal print! Oversized crewnecks or chunky cable knits can easily layer over everything — from short skirts to long maxis to boot-cut jeans to slim leggings. Add boots and you’ve got one of fall’s best looks. Don’t be left out in the cold!
COPYRIGHT 2018 CREATORS.COM
PHOTO CAPTION: Color and pattern liven up sweaters this fall. This knit cardigan is by Swedish designer Gudrun Sjoden (www.gudrunsjoden.com).
DIY Halloween Box Costume for All Ages
Candy, pumpkins and costumes are some of the most popular traditions of the Halloween season. This year, rather than searching store aisles for the perfect getup, consider using boxes from your latest deliveries and other items you have on-hand to create a one-of-a-kind DIY costume, or “boxtume.”
Supplies like cardboard boxes, tape and felt are all you need to piece together this DIY Halloween Llama Boxtume and celebrate the season in style. Since it can be as simple or elaborate as you’d like, the customizable nature of the costume allows your personality to shine.
With many households across the country already taking advantage of Amazon Prime’s unlimited fast, free shipping and streaming, your next costume idea could be just one click away. Boxtumes can be made alone, with kids or even as group costumes, meaning the possibilities are nearly endless. If you’re feeling extra crafty, try your hand at upcycling boxes to craft other custom Halloween items, such as treat containers, spooky centerpieces and decorations.
Share your creativity online using #Boxtumes, and find more inspiration and step-by-step guides at amazon.com/boxtumes2018.
DIY Halloween Llama Boxtume
Project courtesy of CraftyChica.com
1 large Amazon smile box
1 medium Amazon smile box, divided
1 long box
Felt or fabric
Ping pong balls
Craft paint brushes
Faux fur (optional)
Using large box, medium box and long box, build foundation of llama. Use duct tape and masking tape to attach long box to side of large box and piece of rolled medium box to top of long box then use hot glue to secure.
Using scissors and fabric, cut out ears and leave long area to glue to back of head and inside neck of box to help make stronger.
Cover llama with fabric and hot glue in place.
Use ping pong balls or cardboard for eyes and using craft brush, paint on eyelids, lashes and pupils.
Cut small pieces from cardboard to make teeth. Use felt shapes to form nose and lips.
Use felt to decorate sides and neck.
Add personal touches as desired, such as faux fur on head, straps to wear your boxtume over shoulders or darker colored felt for accents.
The Fall Wrap-Up: Coat Trends 2018
By Sharon Mosley
Coats are like handbags: We wear them every day, and they are the basics of a new fashion season. They are probably the biggest wardrobe investments you’ll make. With so many choices available, make your cover-ups into style statements that you’ll wear for years to come. Here are some of the best ways to wrap up this year:
–Double up on the fun. Many coats are larger than life and are perfect for layering on top of jackets, sweaters and even other coats. Just toss a slouchy oversize coat over a sleeker, fitted coat. Blanket coats are one of the best ways to top off an outfit.
–Belt it. Oversize coats are not all cozy cocoons. These coats’ waists still come into focus when belted with soft wrap ties. This new nonchalant ease is reminiscent of Old Hollywood “bathrobe” coats, which stars such as the Hepburn girls made famous. Long trench coats are easily transformed by this glamorous upgrade.
–Make it menswear. If soft and slouchy is not quite your style, there are plenty more-tailored coat options to wear this fall. A classic three-quarter-length coat in a menswear tweed, check or plaid is a sophisticated way to dress up suits for work. The tailored wool or cashmere coat in camel — in long or short versions — is a coat that will stand the test of time.
–Go with faux. The fur is flying this year, and you don’t need a million bucks to get the luxury feel of the fluffy stuff. From shaggy cropped chubby jackets to sweeping teddy overcoats, these faux furs layer effortlessly over jeans or dresses. They can also add a whimsical touch to your work or weekend wardrobe. If you don’t have any animal prints in your closet, consider adding a fuzzy leopard coat this year.
–Puff it up. You no longer have to worry about looking like a giant marshmallow when you want to wear a toasty-warm puffer jacket. The new down jackets are much more figure-friendly, tailored into lean fur-trimmed vests and waist-cinching bombers. In high-tech lightweight fabrics, the new puffer parkas are as at home on city streets as they are on the ski slopes. Experiment with one in a neon color to really stand out this fall and winter.
–Love leather. One of the most sophisticated ways to chase away the chills this year is with a leather coat. “Shine” is the word: Glossy patent slickers and trenches give a basic coat wardrobe a whole new way to sparkle. Black is always a leather lover’s favorite, but red stops traffic. These statement coats instantly elevate anything you wear with them. Oh, and they make great raincoats, too.
–Be a caped crusader. Capes, shawls, ponchos and wraps are all versatile ways to add an elegant surprise update to your coat closet. These extra accessories are flattering on women of all shapes and sizes. They can add an extra dash of playful color to a casual outfit, or a touch of elegance to a cocktail dress. In warmer climates, these chic pieces are a stylish alternative to heavier toppers. They also make great traveling companions — and perfect holiday gifts.
COPYRIGHT 2018 CREATORS.COM
Trick-or-Treat for a Cause
Orange pumpkins on doorsteps and orange candy corn in buckets are iconic staples of Halloween, but the season can be about more than fun and treats.
Since 1950, generations of children in the United States have gone door-to-door on Halloween with the iconic orange coin collection boxes calling out, “Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF!”
With nearly $177 million raised for health care, education, nutrition and more for children, Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF has evolved into a month-long celebration of the power of kids helping kids. Throughout October, kids, parents and teachers across the country can be “scary good” and add purpose to Halloween by supporting the organization’s work for children around the world. In fact, donations as small as 50 cents can contribute to lifesaving change.
When kids participate, they can learn about global issues and feel empowered to make a difference. For parents and teachers, it’s a time-tested tool to help teach kids about the value of helping others and shape the next generation of global citizens.
Sharing the caring
In addition, a series of partners and supporters are also making it easy to inspire change.
This year, Key Club International, as a national partner, will continue to participate by raising funds for The Eliminate Project, which seeks to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus, a deadly disease that claims the lives of thousands of babies and mothers each year. A student-led service leadership program of Kiwanis International, Key Club is the oldest and largest service program for high school students. For more information, visit TheEliminateProject.org or KeyClub.org.
Sony Pictures Entertainment will also support the campaign with “Goosebumps 2’s” very own Slappy hosting Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF’s daily treats calendar, available at TrickorTreatforUNICEF.org throughout the month of October.
Sharing the spirit
Start making big change and remind family and friends to pick up their own little orange boxes and share your Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF story on social media using the hashtags #BeScaryGood #TOT4UNICEF #KidsHelpingKids and tagging @UNICEFUSA.
Visit TrickorTreatforUNICEF.org all month long for daily surprises as well as downloadable DIY donation boxes and additional resources.
Crazy Rich Patterns: The A to Z List
By Sharon Mosley
From argyles to zebras, a crazy rich alphabet soup of prints and patterns all stir together this fall season in a mix of fanciful clothes that clash with originality. Fashion designers are breaking the rules and coming up with innovative creations that make getting dressed more fun than ever. From A to Z, here’s the list of crazy rich patterns for fall 2018.
–Argyle beguiled. This diamond-shaped design set on the diagonal was named after the tartan of Clan Campbell of Argyll in Scotland. The pattern has been popular with golfers since the 1930s and saw resurgence in the ’60s when it became a hit with the preppy crowd. This fall, the argyle-patterned sweater is once again a fashion favorite. Bold, neon colors give argyle an updated twist.
–Brocade brigade. One of the most decorative fabrics, brocade is a fabric featuring a jacquard or raised relief pattern, often woven with metallic thread. Brocade has long been associated with luxurious eveningwear, but it is also used in draperies and upholstery. Remember Scarlet O’Hara and the curtain dress? For fall and the holidays expect to see more brocade worn in the daytime.
–Check, please. Two of the most popular patterns of all time, check and plaid abound in an array of designs. From large blanket squares (popular on capes this year) to houndstooth (looks like a dog’s pointed tooth) to gingham (also known as apron checks) to tattersall (think horse blankets made famous by London racehorse auctioneer Richard Tattersall), these designs vary in size and color. And then there are tartan plaids, long known for identifying Scottish clans. But the newest way to wear these classic patterns is to combine mismatched checks and plaids in the same outfit … Yes, head to toe.
–Flower power. Florals have traditionally been reserved for warm-weather wardrobes, when pastels bloomed for spring flings. But this fall, the fauna has taken a moodier turn in dark hues that will never be considered shrinking violets. These standout floral patterns are meant to be seen, exploding on everything from ankle-grazing coats to thigh-high boots.
–Stripes are ripe. From pinstripes to sailor stripes, vertical or horizontal, stripes are trending this season on both a small and large scale. Multicolored rainbow stripes continue to make big fashion statements, like Tiffany Haddish at the 2018 Emmy Awards, where she wore a colorful gown honoring her father’s Eritrean heritage.
Watch for stripes to turn up more and more in the boardroom, too. The menswear pinstriped power suit is making a comeback.
–Zebras and other creatures. Animal prints have become a fashion classic, and leopard print usually leads the way. But this year, you can tame your inner wild child with all kinds of animal prints — tiger, cheetah, giraffe, zebra and even snakeskin. Mix them with florals, checks and stripes for a menagerie that will take you on a whirlwind style safari. At least, buy a pair of animal-print boots or a fuzzy faux fur coat. You don’t have to be crazy rich to look crazy rich.
COPYRIGHT 2018 CREATORS.COM
How Access to Health Care Coverage Can Improve Academic Outcomes
With each school year, parents dust off their annual checklists that help them organize their needs as their kids head back to the classroom. This school season, make sure one priority at the top of your to-do list is ensuring your children have health insurance.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, studies have shown that children who have health coverage miss fewer classes and perform better in school than those who are uninsured. With the proper health coverage, children can get the immunizations, check-ups, eye exams, dental visits and preventive care they may need to fully participate in school and remain engaged both in the classroom and extracurricular activities.
In fact, millions of children and teens already qualify for free or low-cost health and dental coverage through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). These programs can help those who qualify get the coverage they need to excel in the classroom.
To help ensure their kids make the grade, parents need to first do their homework when it comes to health coverage. To make sure you have assessed your coverage options, keep in mind these health care coverage questions and answers:
What do Medicaid and CHIP cover?
Medicaid and CHIP provide comprehensive coverage for children and teens nationwide who qualify. This includes routine check-ups, doctor visits, prescriptions and immunizations, dental and vision care, and emergency services, all at little or no cost to you or your family.
How do I know if my child is eligible?
In most states, children and teens up to age 19 are eligible to enroll. Depending on your income, many families qualify for free or low-cost health coverage.
Once enrolled, how long is my child eligible for coverage?
Children and teens can stay covered for as long as they qualify. You’ll need to renew their coverage once a year.
How do I apply?
You can apply in person with your state’s Medicaid or CHIP agency or visit the “Find Coverage for Your Family” section on InsureKidsNow.gov. For more information, call 1-877-KIDS-NOW (1-877-543-7669).
When can I apply for enrollment?
Since there is no special open enrollment period for Medicaid or CHIP, you can enroll at any time. While the window for academic enrollment only comes once a semester, the opportunity to apply for enrollment in Medicaid and CHIP is open to parents and their children year-round.
Many families like yours connect their children to vital health services through Medicaid and CHIP. For more information, and to learn about the coverage options available for you and your family, visit InsureKidsNow.gov or call 1-877-KIDS-NOW (1-877-543-7669).
Information provided by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
Fall Fashion’s Super Bowl for Men
BY SHARON MOSLEY
There are lots of reasons to stash the shorts and trade in the tank tops now that football season has started. And, oh yeah, a new fashion season has kicked off, too. Move your wardrobe game forward and score some winning points with these top favorites for fall 2018:
–Big coats. Watch for urban style to take to the fashion field in utilitarian outerwear that’s pumped up in volume and loaded with lots of technical gear. This fall’s playbook includes colorful fireman’s coats, quilted puffer vests and rugged trucker jackets. Pockets are the standout detail to all these oversized trendsetters. Logos, cartoons and graphic images are other ways to amp up the fashion power of statement outerwear this year. And if you love leather, you’re in luck. The leather bomber is a classic, but the leather trench is a winner, too.
–Tailored suits. When your hikes call for maneuvering around the potholes of Wall Street, pinstripes are the best way to go. Trade in the mountain parkas for tailored suits with jackets that still live large with double-breasted jackets, peaked lapels and padded shoulders. How’s that for bringing back the ’80s and Gordon Gekko? Add a dark, shiny, skinnyRat Pack tie and a tie bar and voila! You’ll win the super bowl of style this year.
–The Western Front. The retro cowboy (think Roy Rogers) is inspiring high fashion this fall with fringed shirts, embroidered yokes and flap pockets. Fast forward to a rhinestone cowboy who rides high in blinding bling… put them together and you get a blend of the old and the new Wests for today’s urban cowboys. Throw on a pair of vintage boots and a cozy shearling coat and you’ve got a country look that will score big points during those fall weekends on the ranch or in the city.
–Bold patterns. If the girls can do it, so can the guys. Checks, stripes and plaids in all their myriad incarnations are popping up in bright colors — and all in the same outfit. The newest way to wear all these bold patterns is to wear them head to toe, mixing them arbitrarily with wild abandon… at least that’s how fashion designers showed them on the fall-winter 2018-19 runways. If you’re a little more down-to-earth in your sartorial choices, then one vibrant jacket, flannel shirt or pair of track pants may be all it takes to jazz up your jeans this year.
–Orange is the new black. There’s always one color that signals a new change of season in the fashion palette, and this year for menswear it is tangy orange in all its juicy shades. From sunbaked desert hues to super chic bright neons, orange is the fashion crowd’s new black. But fall’s traditional earth tones are still menswear basics. Pair them with orange and kick off your style game as a trendsetting champion.
PHOTO CAPTION: Kick off fall fashion with the high-impact of bronzed orange in a trucker jacket from Urban Outfitters (www.urbanoutfitters.com).
COPYRIGHT 2018 CREATORS.COM
Fall Into a Fitness Routine
Fall is notorious for comfort foods like pumpkin spice lattes and game day nachos. Combine these tempting seasonal staples with darker, shorter days and it can be hard to maintain an active mindset. Despite the enticement to indulge, you can keep your active lifestyle going or even kick off a new fitness regime.
This year, take advantage of the winds of change when the seasons switch and commit to smart habits for a healthy fall.
Dress for success. As the temperatures drop, you may be tempted to bundle up before heading outdoors to exercise, and for your warm-up and cool-down period, that’s not a bad idea. However, while you’re in the midst of your workout, it’s easy to get overheated. Wear layers that you can shed as you begin to sweat and consider moisture-wicking materials that can prevent sweaty clothes from getting cold in the breeze.
Stay hydrated. You may not feel as thirsty when you exercise in cooler weather, but it’s just as important to keep your body well hydrated. When you sweat, you lose more than just water. An option like Propel Electrolyte Water helps you replace what’s lost in sweat through its key electrolyte – sodium – and supports hydration by stimulating thirst and aiding in fluid balance. With the same level of electrolytes as Gatorade, zero calories and no sugar, it can be a perfect choice to support your active lifestyle. Learn more at propelwater.com.
Opt for early workouts. When dark comes early, it can trick your mind into thinking it’s time to wind down for the night. Avoid that motivation pitfall by planning your workout earlier in the day, such as first thing in the morning or during your lunch break. If early mornings are daunting, remember that it won’t take long to shift your sleep schedule and early exercise is a caffeine-free way to put some energy into your day.
Find exercises you enjoy. Forcing yourself through exercises you despise will only backfire in the long run. If you’re not a runner, look for other ways to get your cardio pumping. Interval walking with varied paces and elevation can be an effective alternative or look at ideas like kickboxing or aerobics that you can have fun with while working up a sweat.
Indulge in moderation. Virtually every expert agrees that an occasional indulgence is perfectly acceptable, but use caution when the fall goodies start tempting. Those warm, rich desserts and drinks are filled with empty calories that can make all your hard work go to waste.
Set realistic goals. Having a long-term goal is a good idea, but be sure to set attainable expectations for yourself, including some milestones you can celebrate along the way to keep your motivation strong. Be realistic about how much time you can dedicate to fitness with your other life demands so you can set your goals accordingly.
Don’t skimp on skin care. The sun may not be as hot, but if you’re exercising outdoors, you’re still at risk for sunburn. Protect any exposed skin with sunscreen before working out.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
How to Find the Right Preschool
Things to consider when researching child care providers
Finding the right preschool or care provider for your child doesn’t have to be a daunting process. Because your child’s early years are crucial in his or her development, choosing the right child care facility is one of the most important decisions you can make to prepare him or her for both school and adult life.
While most parents start the process by asking friends and family for recommendations, keep these tips from the child care experts at KinderCare in mind when searching for a child care center:
Find Locations Along Your Existing Commute. The rhythm of drop-off and pick-up will soon become a reality of your days, so take into account how a new routine will impact traffic and drive times during your commute. Looking into child care facilities near your home or office, or along your route, can be a sanity saver, especially on those mornings when you’re rushing out of the house behind schedule.
Do Your Research. Child care has come a long way in the past couple decades, and nationally accredited centers like KinderCare can provide everything your child needs to reach his or her potential. Awarded by an independent organization, the National Association for the Education of Young Children, accredited centers meet rigorous standards in everything from teacher qualifications to curriculum to safety. A simple search online can provide a list of accredited centers near your location of choice.
Make a List of Requirements. Before you tour a facility, it can help to find your focus. Make a list about what you need from a program, what you want for your child and any concerns you may have, no matter how large or small. For example, consider potential concerns like kindergarten preparation, teachers’ management of conflict between children and more. Use your preferences to guide conversations when you’re ready to take tours.
Take Tours. Once you’ve narrowed down your list to a few preferred facilities or programs, schedule tours to check out the spaces, meet the directors and watch how the teachers interact with the children. Keep your requirements in mind and look for clean, safe facilities that focus on nutrition and encourage exploration and reading while building a sense of belonging. If you’re still on the fence or need more information about one or more centers, don’t be afraid to go back for a second visit and ask more questions to ensure you’re picking the right place for your family.
Trust Your Instincts. After taking tours, you may have a lot of information to process. Narrowing down what’s right for your family can seem overwhelming at first, but asking yourself questions such as these can help you in the long run: Did you feel listened to, heard and understood? Was the center warm and welcoming? When in doubt, trust your gut. This is your child, after all, and you know him or her best.
Find more tips and information to help pick the perfect child care center at kindercare.com.
In the Limelight
By Sharon Mosley
Lime green. Sky blue. Luscious lavender. Sound like the colors of a new autumn fashion season? Well, get ready to think outside the fall fashion crayon box.
According to the international color trend authority, Pantone, Inc., we’re in store for a few surprises for the upcoming year.
“There is a continued transition away from cyclical trends, and instead a strong focus on self-expressive colors that evade antiquated seasonal structure,” says Lea Eiseman, the executive director of Pantone. “As a result, we are seeing some very notable non-traditional choices showing up in the Fall/Winter palette. These unexpected shades reinvent the seasonal color story and allows for the artistry and originality that moves fashion forward.”
So, if you’ve still got that lavender denim jacket from last spring, don’t stash it away just yet. Just mix in in with those autumnal favorites like deep crimson red for a fresh new color pairing that will give your wardrobe a whole new vibe. In other words, feel free to wear any color you want, any time of year! What a concept!
Here are Pantone’s top 10 color picks for fall 2018:
–Red Pear. This is a deep crimson shade of red with just a hint of brown. Think Southwest desert tones. And if you really want to make a statement, wear this rich red color from head to toe…complete with matching red suede boots.
–Valiant Poppy. Pump up the volume on that burnished “red pear” shade and you’ve got the brighter cousin of red in this vibrant hue. Mix both reds together and you’ve got the power color couple of the year. Actually, this red has long been a winner on the fashion scene.
–Nebulas Blue. Had to look this one up…a nebula is an interstellar cloud of dust, hydrogen, helium and other ionized gases. Originally nebula was a name for any diffuse astronomical object, including galaxies beyond the Milky Way. So this new blue for fall is a little darker than spring’s baby blues, and a little brighter. Pantone describes it as “reminiscent of twilight, a thoughtful-starry-eyed blue.
–Quetzal Green. Another word search. The quetzal is a bird in the trogon family found from Mexico to Panama known for its colorful blue-green plumage. The color is similar to a peacock blue-green and is a stunner when combined with the starry aforementioned Nebulas Blue. In velvet, it’s old-world sumptuous. Watch for this color to be a favorite of interior designers, too.
— Ceylon Yellow. OK, the only way to describe this color is to think mustard yellow. Not one of my personal favorites, but in the right shade it can be quite exotic. Brunettes and dark skin tones seem to pull this spicy color off the best.
–Limelight. A more pungent yellow-green, with almost a neon glow, this color is also for the brave fashion hearts. Wear it and expect to be the center of attention.
–Martini Olive. Another traditional fall favorite, the utilitarian military shade of olive has gotten a sophisticated upgrade from fashion designers who paraded it down the runways in everything from chic trench coats to camouflage suits.
–Russet Orange. Think a little shade of orange deeper than pumpkin, and you’ve got the flavor of this earthy shade. As long as you don’t look like you’re celebrating Halloween in any kind of scary costume, then this orange can really reinvigorate your wardrobe. Hint: choose in small doses like accessories unless the thought of being compared to the Great Pumpkin gives you a particular thrill.
–Ultra Violet. Yes, this is THE color of the year, according to Pantone, who first declared it a top contender for the spring 2018 fashion season. The deeper violet now eases into fall and continues to inspire designers. Watch for the royal purple hue to be a big coat-seller for winter.
–Crocus Petal. A lavender color, this also seems to belong more in the spring season. But remember, we’re starting to mix it all up now. That’s a more modern way to dress. And while it may take some of us a little more time to get used to wearing Easter egg colors in the fall, expect to get used to seeing a more seasonless fashion palette in the coming years.
And who wants to pack away all those clothes every season anyway?
COPYRIGHT 2018 CREATORS.COM
School Bus Safety 101
For millions of school-age children in the United States, each day begins – and ends – with a bus ride. While the school bus is the safest way to travel to and from school, according to the National Association of Pupil Transportation (NAPT), it’s important for parents to teach their children how to stay safe in and around the school bus as obstructed views, distracted drivers and more can put kids at risk.
These tips from the experts at NAPT and the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) provide parents with some additional measures to take and lessons to teach to increase safety going to and from the bus, and even during the ride.
Before the Bus Arrives
• Ensure backpacks are packed securely so papers and other items don’t scatter as the bus approaches.
• Create a morning routine that puts kids at the bus stop five minutes before the scheduled pickup time. This helps avoid a last-minute rush, when safety lessons are easily forgotten, and ensures kids are safely in place for boarding.
• Encourage children to wear bright, contrasting colors so they can be seen easier by drivers.
• Walk young children to the bus stop or encourage kids to walk in groups. There is safety in numbers; groups are easier for drivers to see.
• If kids must cross a street, driveway or alley, remind them to stop and look both ways before crossing.
• Verify the bus stop location offers good visibility for the bus driver; if changes are needed, talk with nearby homeowners or school district officials to implement changes. Never let kids wait in a house or car, where the driver may miss seeing them approach the bus.
• Remind children that the bus stop is not a playground. Balls or other toys could roll into the street and horseplay can result in someone falling into the path of oncoming traffic.
• Instruct children to stay at least three steps away from the road and allow the bus to come to a complete stop before approaching it.
On the Bus Ride
• When boarding the bus, items can get bumped and dropped. Caution children that before picking anything up, they should talk to the driver and follow instructions to safely retrieve their possessions.
• Teach safe riding habits: stay seated with head, hands and feet inside at all times; keep bags and books out of the aisle and remain seated until the bus stops moving.
• Instruct children to never throw things on the bus or out the windows and to never play with or block emergency exits.
• Remind kids that just like when riding in a car, loud noises are off limits so they don’t distract the driver. That includes cellphones and other electronic devices; instruct children to put them on mute or use headphones.
Leaving the Bus
• Remind children to look before stepping off the bus. If they must cross the street, teach them to do so in front of the bus by taking five big steps (approximately 10 feet) away from the front of the bus, looking up and waiting for the driver to signal that it is safe.
• For parents who meet their kids at the bus, remember that in their excitement kids may dart across the street. Eliminate the risk by waiting on the side of the street where kids exit the bus.
• Make the bus ride part of your daily “how was school?” discussion. Encourage kids to talk about the things they see and hear on the bus so you can discuss appropriate behaviors and, if necessary, report any concerns to school administrators. As bullying is prevalent and buses are no exception, ask your child to tell you about any bullying they observe, whether against another child or themselves, and talk about how to shut down bully behaviors.
For more information and additional school bus safety tips, visit BetterOurBuses.com.